"You do not need to know our identities. And you certainly don't need to know the reason behind our actions. You anyway have no chance of living!" Lei Jian Hong had no idea why he had divulged their intention to this woman.
"I won't let you off for this! I will kill you and your family! I will kill you!" Tears suddenly filled Princess Ling Meng's eyes. However, she forcefully opened them and stared without blinking, "I won't even spare your ghosts!"
It seemed that her shrill and mournful scream had split-open the blue dome of heaven. The autumn wind rustled. Her hair started to drift about like dead leaves as the whistling sound of the blowing wind got louder and louder. Even then, she somehow exuded a sense of beauty.
The pupils of Lei Jian Hong's eyes suddenly shrank behind his mask. He felt a chill run through him. He trembled a little as his intuition warned him about her. He felt somewhat ashamed at getting frightened. [I am a great Sky Xuan expert. Yet, just a few words from this young woman made me nervous? That's unreasonable!]
"Bang!" Lei Jian Hong flew into a rage because of his shame, and gave a tight slap to Princess Ming Leng. He then rebuked, "Smelly whore! Your death is at hand, and yet you talk like this?! Don't trust too much in your confidence; else I'll kill you right now!"
Princess Ling Meng's face swell with the man's palm-print and her hair scattered down from the wind. However, she stubbornly kept-on staring him. And her gaze was full of bitter hatred.
Lei Jian Hong looked at the venomous expression on Princess Ling Meng's face again. An obscure anger rose inside of him when he realized that the Princess still hadn't given-up. Moreover, this Princess had an important connection with those throwing knives which had killed four of his fellow disciples. And tonight, this woman's bodyguard had seriously injured two more of his brother-disciples. Anger rose unabated in his heat for a moment, and extreme hatred was soon stemmed from his guts as he thought of killing her there and then.
The Third female disciple saw her brother-disciple filling with the desire to kill. She hurriedly advised, "Senior brother, this woman is related to that person. So it would be better if we don't kill her till that man arrives to save her."
Lei Jian Hong clenched his teeth. He then suddenly chopped down on the nap of the princess' neck; she fainted. He then picked her up and tossed her to the Third Disciple. Then, he ordered everyone to move out.
"Put the Princess down!" Dugu Xiao Yi and Sun Xiao Mei rushed to stop the opposite party. They were aware that they would be no match for them. However, they just couldn't allow the enemy to capture Princess Ling Meng and get away.
Lei Jian Hong snorted coldly. The female disciple rose to meet them, and then, "Bang! Bang!" the two young women were struck by a palm each. They flew backwards with wisps of blood flowing from the corners of their mouths. The three black-clothed individuals then flew up and disappeared.
It's not that Lei Jian Hong didn't wish to kill the two women — he just couldn't.
His hatred dictated no other option in the Princess's matter. However, in the case of the other two women — one had the support of the Sun and the Tang Family, while the other had the backing of the Dugus. The three great families would come together if something were to happen to those two. They would become a problem-big-enough to put his younger brother Li's family in a disadvantageous position.
A little while later…
A little white shadow flashed past. It was followed by hoof beats; their sound resembled that of a rain-shower. The hoof beats had sounded only a moment ago, and a strong horse was already turning the street to arrive at the scene of the battle. Silhouettes flashed as two men descended from the horseback.
There was a pool of blood on the ground. Ye Gu Han's lone body lay in the midst of it.
"Little Ye! Ye Gu Han!" Jun Wu Yi exclaimed in alarm. He dropped down besides Ye Gu Han's body. He was supposed to hide the truth about his healed legs, but he had abandoned that appearance now. He kneeled beside Ye Gu Han, and took his left wrist in his hand. Then, pure Xuan Qi started to flow from Jun Wu Yi, and into the seriously injured man. Ye Gu Han didn't have much life-force left in him.
Ye Gu Han had suffered major blood loss. His body had also been inflicted with serious injuries. His energy reserves had all but dried up. His chances of survival looked very slim. Had it not been for the concerns and anxiety of his heart — perhaps he wouldn't have survived till now. However, his expression had already started to slacken. It seemed as if his spirit had started to leave his body. He had incomparable willpower, but it's hard to resist elapse of life-force when the angel of death descends.
Then, Ye Gu Han's consciousness cleared because of the pure Xuan Qi that flowed into his body from Jun Wu Yi's. He forced his eyes open, and saw Jun Wu Yi's thin face. His eyes lit-up as an expression of urgency overtook his face.
Anxious… plea… Ye Gu Han was full of such emotions.
"What happened here?" Jun Wu Yi asked with a sense of urgency, but Ye Gu Han was unable to speak. Jun Wu Yi then looked around. [This street is supposed to be bustling with people. But there is no one else here; it's so quite!]
[Isn't this very strange? Where has everyone gone off to?]
"Does anybody know what happened here?!" Jun Wu Yi roared in anger. The entire street reverberated with his shout.
Still… no one replied.
Ye Gu Han and Jun Wu Yi were contemporaries of their generation. In fact, the Third Master of the Jun Family was a little older than Ye Gu Han. The Ye and the Jun Family used to have a somewhat friendly relationship. Therefore, Jun Wu Yi and Ye Gu Han used to be friends. Then, the Ye Family's power declined. And so, Jun Wu Yi and Ye Gu Han hadn't seen each other since. That happened around ten years ago. Jun Wu Yi hadn't expected to see his dear friend after ten years… and that too when the man was on the brink of death.
Ye Gu Han felt Jun Wu Yi's pure Xuan Chi enter his system. He was surprised to realize that Jun Wu Yi had surpassed his cultivation. Jun Wu Yi had reached the upper reaches of the mid-Sky-Xuan level. It was very astonishing. However, Ye Gu Han also felt his chances at living fade away at the same time. Therefore, his eyes become more and more urgent as the pure Xuan Qi entered his body… but it was soon replaced by a look of pure wrath.
Jun Wu Yi looked-on as Ye Gu Han's aura became weaker and weaker. He then looked up "Mo Xie… can you… save him?"
Jun Mo Xie sighed, [Third Uncle is asking me to do this… even he can't do it himself.] Truth to be told, the Young Master Jun had full faith in the Hongjun Pagoda's abilities. He was sure that he could revive a person regardless of the extent of their injuries. He had been able to eliminate the poison that had plagued his Uncle's body for a decade. In fact, it had even worked when Hai Chen Feng had smashed his own Dantian and Xuan Qi circulation to pieces.
Ye Gu Han's condition was very precarious; in fact, he was almost done for. However, Jun Mo Xie never considered himself a savior. Moreover, he didn't have any favorable opinions of Ye Gu Han and Princess Ling Meng. In fact, assisting them was likely to result in more trouble for him. Hence, there wouldn't be the slightest advantage in helping him — this transaction would result only in a loss.
However, it was his Third Uncle who was asking for help; it was difficult for him to refuse his uncle in such a situation. Therefore, Jun Mo Xie unhurriedly and unwillingly crouched alongside his uncle. He reached with his arm and took Ye Gu Han's hand from Jun Wu Yi. He then slowly closed his own eyes. Next, he initiated the Art of Unlocking Heaven's Fortune. The pure Xuan Qi started to pour out steadily. However, his eyebrows couldn't help but twitch a little.
The Young Master Jun was startled by the extent of Ye Gu Han's injuries. [They can't be taken lightly. His injuries are similar to the ones Hai Chen Feng had suffered. It's almost certain that he will die from these injuries. In fact, it's a miracle that he has held-on, and hasn't died from his wounds! It seems that he doesn't have even half-of-his-breath left. It seems that his conviction is the only thing that remains in his body!]
Jun Mo Xie's aura covered the injured man's body. He had been injured in many places. There must be at least thirty places where he suffered injuries… perhaps more. His lower abdomen was pierced, his shoulder was damaged seriously by sword energy; the sides of his body had been opened, the palm attacks on his chest had completely shattered his rib cage… and his five vital points had been displaced. He was in a very bad state. [Damn!]
Jun Mo Xie had the utmost confidence in his Art of Unlocking Heaven's Fortune when confronted with such a condition. However, he didn't see the slightest of chance of curing Ye Gu Han… Jun Mo Xie could only extend the man's life by preventing his injuries from getting worse — by ensuring that he didn't die from them. However, he couldn't provide surety of healing the man…
Dugu Xiao Yi and Sun Xiao Mei staggered towards them from the distance. They called-out in a loud voice, "Brother Mo Xie, the Princess has been captured! We must quickly save her!"
Jun Mo Xie could tell that the two women had been injured badly as well. He was about to welcome them. However, he remained seated after he heard their words. He thought, [how is the Princess's fate any of my business? Why on earth are you demanding 'me' to do my utmost for her? I've got nothing to do with her. And can't you see Ye Gu Han's condition? And now you want my Third Uncle to do his utmost? Why? And for what reason?]
However, Ye Gu Han's entire body started to tremble when he heard this. His face, which was deathly pale, suddenly flushed with a bit of color. His eyes became a little brighter and warm with hope. He looked at Jun Mo Xie and Jun Wu Yi — entreating them to save the Princess.
Ye Gu Han was grasping at straws. He had noticed that Jun Wu Yi's level had exceeded his own, and that he was at the border of the Sky Xuan realm's mid-mark. Therefore, there would still be a chance of saving the Princess if were to undertake the task.
Jun Wu Yi thought for a moment and asked softly, "You want us to save the Princess?"
Ye Gu Han's eyes showed a shred of happiness in response.
"Stop with the fuss. How do you think we will save her with our strengths? Just speak frankly; you want us to throw away our lives!" Jun Mo Xie continued to use the Art of Unlocking Heaven's Fortune. He didn't even raise his eyebrows, "Third Uncle's Xuan Qi has reached a high level. But his body is still weak. His health is infirm, and he is unable to walk. And they had the strength to leave you like this; not only are you asking my uncle… but you're even asking someone as weak as me? Moreover, I don't have any intention of saving her; nor do I have the strength. There is an ancient saying — Life and death, the fates are decided by the heavens. This must an act of fate."
[Do you think that I'm foolish? Work hard to no avail… What good would it bring us if save that stupid Princess? My third uncle's recovery will be exposed along with his strength. Not only that, my strength will be exposed in that process too. Is it not enough that I've stopped you from dying? Can't you be content with that? Even if there were others in my place… even the Eight Great Masters wouldn't have been able to use this method; not even Yun Bei Chen!]
Ye Gu Han's breathing was already weak, but now it became urgent and frantic since he had started to pant heavily due to his anger. Jun Mo Xie could feel a rapid increase in his pulse. His chest shook as he gasped for air. And because of that a bone in that area got fractured; it made a distinct sound…
Ye Gu Han stubbornly looked at Jun Mo Xie. His expression was one of inexhaustible anger at first… then, one of sadness before it eventually turned into one of a 'pleading' man. Jun Mo Xie's heart shook as he witnessed such a mournful expression. He was sure that Ye Gu Han would've undoubtedly abandoned his self-respect and pride if he could speak, and would've then beseeched the Young Master Jun to save the Princess.
Suddenly, Ye Gu han's face flushed, and a gurgling noise emanated from his throat. It seemed that he was using the entirety of his remaining strength for one last effort. His mouth opened, but he was barely able to spit out two weak words, "Request… save…"
Then, his head crooked and he fainted without a whimper.
Ye Gu Han had chosen to burn the last of his life-force to say these words.
He hadn't been able to finish his sentence. However, Jun Mo Xie and Jun Wu Yi clearly understood what he meant to ask of them, "I request you; save Ling Meng!" He had spent the last moments of his life and his life-force to make this request…
"Is he… dead?" Jun Wu Yi seemed sad and anxious as he asked.
"He hasn't died yet… though he's nearly dead. He is in a somewhat 'suspended' condition near death." Jun Mo Xie's hand was still pouring pure aura into Ye Gu Han. "However, things could take a turn for the worst if his condition remains the same."
"To save people is like putting out a fire; you still haven't saved everyone!" Dugu Xiao Yi rushed over. She cried-out as she grabbed the front of Jun Mo Xie's jacket. "Hurry up and save Princess Ling Meng; what are you waiting for?!"
"How is this my concern?" Jun Mo Xie looked at inexplicably, "Why do you want me to save the Princess? A Prince or something should be dealing with this matter. You want me to go and throw away my life? Ye Gu Han is Sky Xuan expert. Can't you see how they've turned him into a mere sack of blood? I've no strength in comparison; yet you want me to go and save her? How can those words even come out from your mouth?"
Jun Mo Xie rebuked in his heart, [Princess Ling Meng is not you; so why on earth should I exert myself for such a stupid matter? I had rushed over for your sake; who thought it would turn into such a big problem…]
"You… uhh… then what do we do?" Dugu Xiao Yi recalled that Jun Mo Xie was that powerful. In fact, he couldn't even match her. So how would he deal with multiple Sky Xuan experts? What had she just said? She suddenly regretted her words, and was now at a loss, "Why… haven't those guards from the Imperial Palace arrived yet?"
Those words were of no interest to the listeners. Jun Wu Yi and Jun Mo Xie looked at each other in tacit understanding.
"Mo Xie, as an act of kindness to Ye Gu Han… we should help. And after all… she is the Princess." Jun Wu Yi said in a tactful manner. He knew that his nephew wasn't interested in Princess Ling Meng. He was well aware that his nephew would actually sit and watch idly.
Hence, he decided to use Ye Gu Han's name instead of the Princess. He had said this since he had already figured that his nephew would make no attempts to rescue her otherwise.
He knew his nephew well. He knew his nephew was more than capable of doing just that. In fact, that would be the youngster's natural instinct — and he'd bear a clear conscious in the regard as well.
"I won't do it! I have no interest!" Jun Mo Xie refused his Third Uncle as well. He had a faint feeling that, [This doesn't seem like a minor matter… the cost of my identity's exposure would be… would be far from inconsequential…]
[I wouldn't do anything since it has nothing to do with me — even if she were the daughter of a deity; let alone she's a princess; I would rather use this free time to tease Little White…]
[Then again… the Great Assassin Jun won't work when I have no advantage from the transaction…]
"I will go; even if you don't!" Jun Wu Yi angrily propped-up from the ground and jumped onto the horse. "I do not go for the Princess; but I go for Ye Gu Han! Ye Gu Han would commit a bloody purge of the city for the Princess — just as your grandfather did for you! How can we sit back and ignore such affections?!"