TGL Volume 3, Chapter 5 (5)

The competition that the sects ran was disappointing. There were only two saint-realm experts who participated, everyone else wasn’t worth mentioning. And none of the saint-realm experts used swords. I thought I’d be able to learn something despite that: new techniques, new ideas, anything. But no, the people that participated in the competition were like greenhouse flowers, coddled as they grew up, never exposed to any hardship. They didn’t understand anything about fighting for their lives, opting for flashy moves that exposed openings instead. I should’ve just let Lucia find Softie; maybe there would’ve been someone to fight.

Where is Lucia, anyway? After finding out there wasn’t any food served at the competition, she wandered off somewhere. Since I became a sky-realm expert, I wasn’t limited by distance from my weapon body, able to go further and further away. I wonder, if I become an immortal, will I be able to leave my weapon body behind completely? Well, that’s something to consider in the future. Lucia, who’s been faster than me at cultivating, still hasn’t become an immortal. Why am I worried about becoming one before her?

Though I’m far away from my weapon body, I can still sense its general location, which is why Lucia had no problems with me wandering off. Maybe it’s more appropriate to say Lucia was the one that wandered off. It doesn’t matter. It seems like she’s at that tavern over there where a group of people are entering. Isn’t that the woman who won the sect competition? And those people behind her must be from the sect that she joined. What was its name again? The representative that the sect sent was ancient-looking but barely a sky-realm expert, so I didn’t bother learning his or his sect’s name.

Anyways, why would they be going to such a rundown tavern? No, in the first place, why was Lucia here? I can’t smell the faintest hint of chocolate or acorns, the top two of Lucia’s largest vices. Is there something special about this tavern? I released a bit of my qi and swept it over the building, but I couldn’t find anything special except for Lucia and the phoenix. I’m not sure why Lucia took the phoenix with her but refused to bring the gangsters that she saved as well. Maybe she was trying to save money on the teleportation fee, but it’s a shame she can’t think ahead. She could’ve deployed those gangsters to rob people, easily making back the money spent to transport them here. Perhaps Ilya is a little necessary, if only to make up for Lucia’s lack of brains. Even though I’m quite intelligent myself, Lucia doesn’t trust my words for some reason. She always thinks I’m trying to trick her. I wonder why.

Bang!

Hmm? That came from the tavern. Did Lucia hit someone? No, it seems like someone from the sect has a problem with the tavern itself. Perhaps the layout offended them. One can never tell what’ll set off an expert. Like Ilya said once long ago, many of them aren’t mentally stable due to isolating themselves from other people for extremely long periods of time. …How come it feels like she was taking a jab at me too when she said that? I’ll have to interrogate her when I see her again. Anyway, what’s going on in the tavern?

“A trash that hasn’t even reached the saint realm yet wants to marry a peerless genius? In your dreams!” The sect member threw a punch at the barkeep, and the man tried to block, but he was sent flying, both his arms bending at angles they shouldn’t.

That’s odd. Usually Lucia’s the only person who resorts to violence right away. Then again, the Immortal Continent is extremely large: Cultures may vary from place to place. Problems were solved diplomatically with words in Kong County; however, violence seems to be the main form of communication here. No wonder why the voices in Lucia’s head told her to come here. This environment was practically made for her.

“Long Chen!” The winner of the sect competition stepped forward, standing side by side with the aggressive sect member. The representative stood behind the two with his hands clasped behind his back. And three other sect members stood behind him. The girl took an unfurled scroll out of her interspacial ring. She flicked her wrist, and it sprawled out, revealing characters that I couldn’t read. Lucia can’t read them either, I’m sure. The loss of Ilya had a greater impact than I thought. Perhaps the phoenix can read? It knows how to speak, reading should be the next logical step.

The barkeep sat up, a grim smile on his pale face despite his broken arms. “Mo Yan, are you here to annul our engagement? You only had to ask, and I would’ve agreed. There was no need to hire thugs from the Slaughter Seeking Sect to break my arms.”

“Long Chen, you—”

“Wait!” Lucia stood up. And wobbled. Was she drunk? “Are you the barkeep’s fiancée!? He said you were an unparalleled beauty”—she paused and let out a small burp—“but why can’t I see that? Mm, you look nice, but there’s no way you’re as pretty as Softie. I bet you’re a man in disguise!”

Ah, Snow, even a decade after your death, Lucia’s still traumatized by your crossdressing abilities.

The winner of the sect competition coughed and coughed some more. Her face was red, and she seemed so angry that she couldn’t speak. Did Lucia hit a nerve? Was she actually a he?

“Nonsense! What horseshit are you spewing!?” The aggressive man beside Mo Yan stepped forward, throwing a punch at Lucia.

“Watch out!” the barkeep shouted, but I wasn’t sure who he was trying to warn.

Lucia slapped her hand forward like she was shooing a fly. Her palm hit the man’s fist, and his arm exploded as he flew backwards, destroying the tavern’s wall as he passed through it. “Ah?” Lucia’s head turned from side to side. “He disappeared!? Is he above me!?” She looked up and frowned when she didn’t see anyone. “Mm. Guess not.” She lowered her head and looked around again. “Well, if he shows up in front of me again, I’ll hit him with a hammer!” Then, Lucia’s eyes met mine. “Durandal! You’re back! Come and listen to this barkeep’s story! You’ll love it since you’re a sadist. This barkeep’s such a miserable bastard who undergoes a lot of suffering.”

…Since when did I become a sadist? It must be the alcohol speaking for her. It looks like she’s been drinking since the morning until now.

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