TGL Volume 4, Chapter 3 (3)

The seven great sects have sent scouts over. I saw them with my own eyes. I didn’t see them for very long. An alarm blared, and then the people in the sky were eliminated by the traps surrounding the door, turning them into ashes. Anyone without the strength of a quasi-immortal would be destroyed by those formations in an instant. Even Bloodmoon and I could barely hold on with our combined strengths. It was a lot sooner than expected, considering how far the door was located from civilization. The seven great sects likely released news and coaxed volunteers to enter first. There’s a standard method of exploring lower realms, starting from the weakest to see if there’s any restrictions in place.

Perhaps there’ll be an invasion of this realm within a month. I’m already feeling a little regret for accepting this choker so easily. If Bloodmoon hadn’t been there to goad me on, I could’ve escaped during the invasion, but now, I’m in the same boat as this vice-sect leader. If she dies, my head will evaporate once this choker explodes. Does that mean I’ll have to help the lower realm defend itself? At the very least, I have to keep the vice-sect leader alive.

As for the sect leader…, I don’t like her. She’s an evil temptress. I’ve never smelled nor tasted food this good in my whole life. However, I found out she wasn’t cooking with spiritual fruits! Since when did quasi-immortals eat potatoes!? Phew. I have to calm down. Without cultivating, my will is wavering. I’ve spent the past thousand years or so cultivating in a secluded cave. Mortal temptations mean nothing to me. …But those potatoes tasted so good…. And there’s still more. I can’t eat them. I already lost my spiritual energy upon leaving the immortal realm. I can’t ingest impurities too.

“This is really good,” a hoarse voice said. It was Bloodmoon. His face was stuffed, his cheeks bulging. Sauce was smeared all over his lips, nose, and cheeks. It was as if he had shoved his face directly into the bowl of stew to eat it. “You made this yourself?”

“That’s right!” The sect leader’s tail was twitching. I never had a pet, but even then, I can feel the happiness radiating out of the humanoid beast’s body. “How good is it? The best you’ve ever had? You won’t believe how long it took to cook the mushroom. They’re practically as soft as potatoes now!”

It wasn’t potato stew?

“Yes, it was the best I’ve ever had,” Bloodmoon said and grinned. What was he doing? He was acting completely out of character. He’s a cunning villain, one capable of slaughtering whole families without blinking an eye. “Are you accepting apprentices? I’d like to learn under you.”

That’s his goal! If he becomes the sect leader’s apprentice, he’ll be given special treatment and likely regain his power. As the apprentice of a chef, he can steal a few bites of rare spiritual foods here and there. Also, knowing how airheaded this sect leader seems, she might really accept him as an apprentice!

“Hell no!” The sect leader’s eyes widened, and she threw her spoon at Bloodmoon. It struck his head, and there was a snapping sound as his neck shifted to the side. With a thump, his body collapsed to the ground. “Ah. Crap. Did that kill him? I didn’t mean to kill him….” The sect leader disappeared and reappeared by Bloodmoon’s side. “Wait! He’s still breathing. Phew. I almost became a murderer today.”

Phweeet! Phweeet! Phweeet!

Ashes fell from the sky.

“Anyway,” the sect leader said, reappearing by her giant wok filled with stew. “As I was saying, you can’t be my apprentice! Your face is too scary to look at.”

…For a reason like that? Bloodmoon is abnormally hideous for an immortal. Most immortals prefer perfect, unblemished skin that practically glow in the moonlight, and it’s not hard to achieve that at all. Bloodmoon prefers his face covered in scars and tattoos. Perhaps I’ll steal his idea. “Excuse me, Sect Leader Lucia? I’m very interested in your cooking as well. Could you possibly take me as an apprentice?”

The humanoid beast turned towards me. Her eyes narrowed. I’m not sure why. It’s not like this is the first time she’s ever seen me. “Nope.”

Rejected as well? Understandable. Well, as long as Bloodmoon doesn’t obtain an advantage over me, this doesn’t really count as a loss. I’m still curious, however. “Is there any specific reason why?”

“Monks can’t eat meat! How are you going to become a cook if you can’t eat meat, huh?”

Monk? “I think there’s a misunderstanding? I’m not a monk.”

“If you talk like a monk, dress like a monk, and act like a monk, then you’re a monk.”

I thought monks had to shave their heads? “I still have hair, you see?” I pointed at my head. I’m not very vain, but I am a little proud of my hair. My parents used to compliment it all the time … before they were killed by Bloodmoon.

“You’re a cheating monk?” The sect leader’s eyes widened. “Having hair is against the rules!”

Why does she keep insisting on her incorrect train of thought? “I’m not a monk.”

“Softie!” The sect leader glared at the vice-sect leader. “Off with her head!”

I’m not sure what’s even happening anymore, but am I about to die?

“Err, hair! Not her head. I meant to say hair. Off with her hair!”

“But why?” I can grow my hair back quite easily, but I don’t want to be punished for no reason! “I just wanted to be your apprentice. How come we’re talking about shaving my head!?” Why am I yelling? I think I lost control of my emotions just now. It felt like a devil was about to worm its way into my heart.

“Ahem.” The vice-sect leader stared at me with eyes filled with pity. “This is how our sect leader usually behaves. If you wish to thrive in the sect, you’ll have to get used to it.”

I think I understand why the vice-sect leader wants to overthrow the humanoid beast. …I’ll do my best to help her.

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