TGL Volume 3, Chapter 18 (2)

Once I stepped inside the cave, the previously dark interior was lit up by glowing rocks on the walls. I smelled blood, but there wasn’t any blood in sight. Something brushed against my tail, and I turned around. The entrance was gone! Well, not really, it was just covered by a layer of mist. Is this a formation? Mm, it probably is. That’s okay though, as long as Mrs. Feathers is here, I’m not afraid of anything! “Mrs. Feathers, lead the way!”

Mrs. Feathers sighed and grew to the size of a turkey. Then she waddled ahead of me and Softie. The cave was a lot deeper than expected. It didn’t slant downwards, but there were lots of twists and turns. I’m pretty sure the mountain it was in wasn’t wide enough to accommodate all this space…. Maybe the formation brought us into a separate dimension like all those tombs. That must be it. Anyways, there were lots of paths and different ways to go, but Mrs. Feathers knew the way. But how? Is it another secret phoenix technique she can teach me? “Hey, Mrs. Feathers, how do you know which way is the right one?”

“I’m using my divine sense. Isn’t that why you wanted me to lead the way in the first place?”

“Uh…, yeah, let’s go with that.” Mhm. Getting the right answer for the wrong reason is still getting the right answer. That’s what I learned from doing all these good deeds; the lesson it taught me is applicable to all parts of life! “Divine sense….” I wonder when I’ll learn that.

“Boss, there’s someone right up ahead,” Mrs. Feathers said and stopped. “Do you want me to go in and catch him?”

“No, I’ll do it.” After all, good deeds must be done by myself for them to matter. I’ll charge in and…. “Flaming Fist!” Ah? There’s no one here to punch. “Mrs. Feathers, didn’t you say someone was in here?”

“He’s above you, Boss.”

Above me? Oh! There’s a person clinging onto a ledge near the ceiling. What’s he doing up there? “Hey, are you okay?”

The person stared at me. “You came in here wanting to kill me, so why are you asking if I’m okay?”

“I didn’t come here to kill you, I was just going—”

“Grudge Swamp!”

This guy didn’t let me finish talking and directly attacked me! How despicable! Only I’m allowed to do that to people! But what is this Grudge Swamp? There’s … black water springing out of the ground! How do I stop it!? I’ll burn it away! If there’s enough fire, water will no longer exist! “Flaming Hammer Strike! Flaming Hammer Strike! Flaming Hammer Strike!”

Something screamed, and the ground stopped bubbling. Phew. I think I stopped it. That was a close one! I almost drowned. Now all that’s left is this evil cultivator who summoned the water! No wonder why the Karma Association labeled defeating him as a good deed. I’ll step up towards him with my Footsteps of the Giant, and … he teleported! Hmm. I guess that’s the downside of Footsteps of the Giant. It lets me use all my strength in the air, but it’s not as fast as flying or teleporting.

“I caught him, Boss.”

Mrs. Feathers caught him? “I said I was going to do it! Hurry up and let go of him, but beat him up first so he can’t run from me.”

“You! Who are you two!? Ack! Stop! I yield, I yield!”

Mrs. Feathers battered the man with her wings a few times. Then she released him, and before he could stand up, I caught him! “Gotcha! I’m here to catch you to do a good deed.”

“Good deed…?” The man went limp and stared at me.  “The Karma Association sent out a request for me?”

“Mhm.” Great, he knows about karma and all that. That saves me a lot of explaining—not that I was planning on doing that anyway. I don’t need to explain myself to evil cultivators! Wait a minute…, evil cultivator? “Hey, by any chance, do you know that technique that lets me read people’s memories? Soul…, uh, something.”

“Soul Scour?”

“Yeah! That’s the one.”

The man trembled. “If I do…, what will you do to me?”

“I’ll beat you up until you teach me how to do it!” He definitely knows it. His reaction gave it away. I never thought I’d earn so much from doing good deeds. “Hurry up and teach me.”

The man took a jade slip out of his interspacial ring and held it out towards me. “The details for Soul Scour are in here, but aren’t you from a phoenix sect? Why would you want to learn an evil technique?”

Mrs. Feathers snorted. “There’s no such thing as an evil technique. It’s only the person who uses the technique that’s good or evil. Using Soul Scour on criminals is righteous.”

The man turned his head towards Mrs. Feathers. I was still holding him by the sash on his waist. “If techniques are neither good nor evil, then what about a technique that improves your strength upon killing innocent people? That’s my cultivation path. Don’t you think there might be a misunderstanding between us? There’s a possibility I’m still a good person.”

Mrs. Feathers rubbed her head with her wing before puffing her chest out. “Only an evil person would cultivate such a technique.”

Evil or not, if a technique works, it works! “Can I get that technique too? The one that lets me get stronger by killing people?” Ooh, it reminds me of Claw’s technique. Didn’t he grow stronger for beheading people? When I asked him for it, he gave me an excuse…. What was it again?

“Sorry, but this technique can only be cultivated by men. If a woman tries it, she’ll explode.”

Yeah! It sounded exactly like … that…. “Seriously!?” What is this technique sexism!? “Why is it only unfair in the men’s favor? Where are the techniques that only women are allowed to use!?”

Softie cleared her throat. “The higher-tiered techniques involving ice tend to be female only. If a man tries to use them, he’ll freeze.”

Mm? “Are these techniques strong?”

This time, Mrs. Feathers responded. “Yep. In the center of the Immortal Continent, the fourth-strongest sect is the Frozen Lily Sect. Only women are allowed inside.”

“I want to learn those techniques!”

“Boss…, you can’t. Since you’ve already cultivated the Secret Phoenix Rebirth Technique, the flames inside of you won’t tolerate any techniques involving ice or water. You’ll explode if you learn them.”

What the hell! That’s not fair! You know what? Who needs stupid male-only-growing-stronger-by-killing techniques and female-only-but-excluding-me-ice techniques anyway!? I bet learning them would make my head hurt a lot! It’s a good thing I can’t. Mhm. Only perverted masochists would learn these techniques, hmph, hmph.

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