When Qin Mieqin finished his sentence, Chengfeng immediately clenched his fists as he stared at Mieqin and Xue Man on guard.
A delighted Xue Man quickly responded, “Good! Good! Good! Kill him! Kill him!”
However, Mieqin’s tone of voice suddenly changed in an instance. “But… you’re just a servant, you don’t count as an official disciple of our sect. So how could you be referred to as a senior?”
Xue Man’s facial expression changed gravely. His mood suddenly dropped from joyous to despair.
Mieqin walked in front of Xue Man and looked at the cultivator robes he was wearing, “Or, could it be that you think because you’re wearing the robes from Hidden Brocade Court, you’ve become one of them as well?” he sneered.
“Let me tell you, Xue Man!” Mieqin exclaimed as he circled slowly around him, “Even if you’re wearing the robes of Hidden Brocade Court, you should never forget your identity. You are Qian Xueshan’s servant— you are his dog! And as a dog… Do you possibly think you’re worthy of being referred to as a ‘senior’? Hmm?”
“Hmph!” grunted Mieqin in annoyance. Xue Man’s face, however, was now scarlet red, his entire body trembled as he felt both extremely angry yet embarrassed at the same time.
Mieqin glanced at the crowd, wedged among them were two defectors who once belonged in Hidden Sword Court. To see Mieqin in such an occasion, both of them hung their heads low in shame.
Xue Man who was still filled with rage and embarrassment threatened Mieqin, “Qin Mieqin! Are you trying to pick a fight with my master?!”
Mieqin flatly glanced at Xue Man, “Just because of you? Or perhaps… What you’re saying is ‘to beat the dog you must first look at the owner’?”
Mieqin’s tone of voice and expression held the same flatness as he did before, but this only made Xue Man even more frustrated. He was just like an unremarkable bug crawling before him.
In Xue Man’s eyes, Hidden Sword Court was nothing but a declining tattered house that was trying its last effort to keep its roof on. Only a few ‘nails’ were left standing to keep the house from falling apart. It was a court that could be easily turned to ashes by Qian Shanxue with just a wave of his hand.
But at this moment, Mieqin had vividly shown him what *‘ a broken ship is still a ship with three nails standing’ meant.
[T/L : *This is a Chinese Idiom that means “Even if something is broken, it still has its own value.”]
Even if Hidden Sword Court was on the verge of extinction, Mieqin still proved that his status was not one to be surpassed nor disrespected. This was something that could not be seen but felt by the people around them, and this was… the difference in social class!
When such an event was to happen in a public setting and showcased under such strict legal framework, Xue Man finally felt its intimidating presence!
Xin Mieqin continued, “Go and repeat what I said to your master Qian Shanxue, and if you can’t remember it, I’ll tell it to him myself. Let’s see if he would… pick a fight with me for a mere dog?”
Xue Man’s whole body was trembling, his face was drained of all colour. Mieqin side-eyed him and demanded, “What are you standing there for? Hurry up and get out of here!”
Xue Man hesitated before he stuttered, “B-but… I still need to attend to my duties!”
“Listen carefully, Shiwu Mountain is Hidden Sword Court’s turf. The fact that we Hidden Sword Court allowed you to work here doesn’t mean that you own the entire place. If I were to let you stay, you could stay; If I were to tell you to scram, you get out of here immediately! Do you understand?”
Xue Man gritted his teeth as he replied in a whisper, “Understood.” As he turned around to leave, Chengfeng quickly shouted, “Wait!”
Xue Man turned his head around as he glared at Chengfeng, “What more do you want?”
“Give our money back!” cried Chengfeng in anger.
Xue Man held in his anger. He turned around to look at his subordinates who were already shaking in fear. With one glance, his subordinates quickly poured out all the money they had extorted from the others onto the ground.
He stared deeply into Chengfeng’s eyes as he suppressed the pain and rage from the embarrassment.
He then spoke to Mieqin with his head hung low, “Senior Brother Qin, c-can I leave now?”
The crowd looked at Xue Man as he limped away from the mountain. When he finally left, the once eerie silence broke into a wave of cheers and celebration.
Qin Mieqin turned around to glare at the crowd, and the cheers immediately stopped.
He then glanced towards Chengfeng and warned him, “Li Chengfeng, despite the circumstances, you still beat up someone from the same sect! We will decide on your punishment once you return from mining!”
Seeing how Mieqin was able to tear down Xue Man’s defences with just his words, Chengfeng thought to himself, ‘It seems like duelling doesn’t just involve the use of one’s fists and power nor magic skills and magical weapons nor magical arrays and fulu seals. This kind of psychological damage is just as important. As long as I can find and attack the opponent’s psychological weakness, it would weaken my opponent’s psyche and make their minds stray.’
When in a duel, if one’s mind was to falter, the results of it would be unimaginable. This situation could even lead to the victim to lose entirely.
As he thought of this, Chengfeng nodded to himself. He felt as if he had secretly learned a new technique. But what no one expected was that in the period where Chengfeng would defeat the strong for the weak, the level of his verbal attacks had already reached the same skills as his magic duelling skills.
Mieqin glanced at the mine’s elevator as he spoke to Su You, “Why are you all going mining today?”
Su You who was visibly afraid of Mieqin, hung his head low as he smiled wryly, “Senior Brother Qin, we’re going down to mine some materials to forge a quality weapon for Junior Brother Chengfeng.”
“Do any of you know how to forge weapons?” sneered Mieqin.
He Zhu stepped forward as he replied, “Senior Brother Qin, I know how.”
Mieqin stared at the gang for a while and opened his mouth as if he was about to say something, but ultimately chose to keep quiet. He then waved his hand, gesturing them to do as they please.
Su You and the rest sighed in relief and proceeded to give Chengfeng a death glare. The posse then quickly went into the elevator, fearing that Senior Brother Qin would suddenly change his mind. The other servants were also terrified as they all quickly bypassed Mieqin, scurrying and squeezing into the elevator that could hold more than a hundred people.
While in the elevator, Chengfeng felt a mixture of nervousness and excitement as he looked around. But, what he did not notice was that there was a small and slender figure who wore a cultivator robe that was too big for their size, hiding by the corner among the crowd with their head hung low.
Chengfeng looked upwards, only to find the man-made hole above him had slowly turned smaller and smaller. The once vast blue sky had also turned into a small blue square within the hole. Chengfeng quietly thought to himself, ‘If someone were to slice the ropes that were holding this elevator, wouldn’t that mean I would die inside this mine?’
But Chengfeng immediately stopped himself as he slapped his mouth. Ptui ptui ptui! Don’t jinx it! This elevator is carrying more than forty people. Not to mention, there are many Senior and Junior Brothers here. They can’t possibly die here with us, could they?
But what Chengfeng would never expect, was that his little thought would turn into a bad omen. And what he did not realise, when Mieqin was watching as their elevator descended into the mines, his eyes that were watching them slowly disappear from his sight… was full of pity.
Mieqin lightly sighed, “If only they came a day earlier or later… Why did they have to choose today of all days?!”