The first sword was sharp, the second sword was soft and malleable and the third sword was heavy. What advantage does this fourth sword, a wooden sword have?
Could a wooden sword be used to cut people down? Could it be used in battle?!
If it could, wouldn’t everyone be wielding wooden swords while fighting their enemies during battle?
Outside the mansion, the street was crowded with people who were spectating the parade of the best imperial scholar who was riding a horse. However, Little Stone did not even dart a glance at him.
People laughed at him for his obsession with swords whereas he laughed at them for wasting their energy and effort in pursuing fame and reputation which were as transient as clouds and being childish but acting arrogantly on account of their seniority.
“So what if one becomes the best imperial scholar? Neither imperial examinations nor merit is more exhilarating than settling vengeance and debt of gratitude with a single slash of a sword!”
In Gusu City, Philanthropist Zhao whose age was over eighty years old, had married a beautiful concubine who was only thirteen years old. Many villagers had gone to spectate the groom’s procession to the bride’s house, but Little Stone did not even pay the slightest attention to it.
People teased him for being obsessed with swords while he laughed at them for being addicted to wine and women.
“Wine, women, wealth and pride are deceptive. Only the sword in one’s hand is true!”
Little Stone was still a mortal, but under Ning Fan’s influence, his heart had almost been filled with swords.
As long as he gains enough experience in the future, he could become a peerless swordsman in the mortal world. When he wields a sword, he will be undefeatable.
In the world of immortals, he would be capable of breaking through the Void Realm and stir up a storm!
He had this latent potential!
Gradually, Ning Fan no longer stayed still while holding the wooden sword in his hand. Now, even if he was wielding a sword made of wood, he could cause smoke and ashes to fly.
That was a realm where being formless wins against any forms. However, it was still not enough…
In the fifth month, Ning Fan held nothing in his hand. A sword would be formed with just a snap of his fingers.
An intangible aura condensed on him. He would only need to complete the final step and he could then wield it at will.
Seeing Ning Fan release sword qi which pulverized a massive rock weighing approximately fifteen thousand kilograms with just a snap of his fingers, Little Stone’s eyes burned with excitement. At that very moment, a burning passion rose within his heart…
He wanted to be a swordsman!
“Uncle Zhou, I want to be a swordsman. Can you be my master?!”
Little Stone fell to his knees on the ground in front of Ning Fan, but the latter just shook his head with a kind smile.
“Your potential in the Dao of Sword may not necessarily be weaker than mine. It will only limit you if you acknowledge me as your master. You just need to remember the process that I went through for the past five months in comprehending swords. Carry this insight with you and go challenge all swordsmen beneath the heavens along your path in seeking the art of sword. One day, you will find your own Dao of Sword.”
“You’re too young right now and your eyes only see the sword but not life. This isn’t enough... Gusu is a good place. Get along well with your mother and be a filial son. There are two pills here, one is for you and the other one is for your mother. Consume it and your lifespan will extend for one hundred years. As for this book, it has a set of cultivation methods regarding the Dao of Sword which can lead you to the path of cultivation. However, do not open this book before you become a peerless and unrivalled swordsman in the mortal world!”
“When you become so strong that you wish to be defeated but no one can do it in this world, only then can you open this book and step into the world of cultivation. It will be a brand new world with even more challenges to satisfy you!”
Ning Fan’s gaze swept across Gusu City. He had stayed here for five months and it was about time to leave. Both his silver and mansion were all given to Little Stone including the sharp sword, the soft sword, the heavy broadsword and the wooden sword which he randomly chose to comprehend his sword intent.
Pulling Xu Qiuling into his arms, Ning Fan made a step forward and vanished completely into a ray of sword light.
Little Stone was stunned by the scene before his eyes while Bai Su felt an inexplicable feeling of sadness.
“Young Master Zhou has disappeared… So it turns out that he is not a mortal. Immortals really exist in this world…”
A tremendous sense of loss flooded her heart. It was hard to explain and it was even more difficult for others to understand.
Bai Su was unclear of the feeling she had and she just let out a gentle sigh.
“It’s good for it to end like this…”
With a flash of sword light, Ning Fan travelled away from the island to the sea in a single step with Xu Qiuling in his embrace. They dived ninety thousand zhang* (3.33 m per zhang) deep into the sea. Then, he waved his hand, summoning a sword light and split the sea apart, creating a space without water.
After five months of recuperation, the gold qi in Xu Qiuling’s life force had recovered up to 90%.
Next, he would only need to insert an extra powerful trace of gold qi into her and she would then be fully cured!
Ning Fan patted his storage pouch and took out the crimson-red metal piece - the remnant piece of the Immortal Entrapping Sword. His eyes sparkled with determination and he swallowed it down in one gulp.
The remnant piece was forced into his Sea of Consciousness and was engulfed by his sword sense. All of a sudden, his sword sense increased rapidly and the barrier of the sword intent that he had been comprehending for the past five months broke at this moment!
Sword intent, condense!
One would never be considered as a true sword cultivator without sword intent. When one successfully condenses sword intent, they would be able to unleash twice the power when using sword techniques compared to before.
“Congratulations to Big Brother for successfully condensing your sword intent! But is it really good that we leave Gusu City just like this…? Aren’t you going to keep Little Stone as your apprentice? And that Bai Su, aren’t you going…”
“My bonds with this mortal world have come to an end!” Ning Fan answered in a decisive manner.
Mortals should have a mortal life. Even though he gave Little Stone a book which recorded a set of sword cultivation methods in the end, if Little Stone fails to reach a level where he is completely unrivalled in the mortal world, he would not allow Little Stone to take the path of cultivation.
Cultivation is a path with no return. It may not necessarily be suitable for mortals as it involves too much bloodshed. If he can enjoy the peace of Gusu City, why should he involve himself with endless killings and battles like Ning Fan?
The things that happened in Gusu City were cast aside by Ning Fan in his mind.
In the past, the most beautiful memories he had in his life were those he had in Seven Apricot City. Along his path of cultivation, the collection of beautiful memories he had included those in the Luo Yun Tribe and now it was added with those in Gusu.
If possible, he would like to live in Gusu for the rest of his life. However, he had a reason not to stop moving forward.
“Next, I will expel a trace of sword power from the Immortal Entrapping Sword and insert it into your immortal veins. Then, I will help you refine this power. If everything is successful, not only will your gold qi be completely replenished, your cultivation base will also be improved greatly. At the very least, you will attain Half-Step Divine Transformation Realm!”
“I don’t care about my cultivation base. I am already content if I can stay alive and continue to stay by your side to relieve your exhaustion in killings…”
Xu Qiuling looked affectionately at Ning Fan and they grasped each other’s palms. A trace of sword power exuded from Ning Fan’s palms and entered Xu Qiuling’s body.
At this moment, Xu Qiuling revealed a pained expression but she clenched her teeth and endured it.
If I don’t endure this pain, I will then have no qualifications to be with him till the end of my life…
This pain is nothing. Despite knowing it was withering day after day, wasn’t it still able to wait for the butterfly to return? Though it was just the remnant ashes of the butterfly…
Xu Qiuling clenched her teeth even more tightly and nearly lost her consciousness due to the excruciating pain. But she still struggled to open her eyes and looked directly at Ning Fan.
She felt that as long as she could look at Ning Fan, the pain and bitterness of the process would be less intolerable.
An aura which was getting stronger and stronger started forming within Xu Qiuling’s body.
Everyone claimed that she would not live long, but she was determined to live on in a proud manner!
As the gold qi of her life force was fully replenished, the level of her cultivation base which had been suppressed by her sickness began to rise sharply.
In the past, the reason why Xu Qiuling did not break through to the Nascent Soul Realm was not because she was unable to do it, but because she did not have the courage. If one breaks through to the Nascent Soul Realm, one would need to combine the five elements into one. Since she was born with an inadequate amount of the gold element, she could not achieve Nascent Formation…
However, her magic power had been accumulating in her body through years of cultivation. All of them were now unleashed on this very day!
Her magic power rose to 5500 units and her cultivation base broke into Half Step Divine Transformation Realm!
“Big Brother! I-I…” Tears welled up within her eyes out of joy.
She finally won against her fate and survived!
All of a sudden, countless Heavenly Lightning Tribulations befell her, penetrating into the deep sea. Ning Fan intended to help her parry those lightning rays but she shook her head with a confident smile.
“Don’t worry… I can do it! I don’t want to be a woman that will only burden you!”
Translated by Tommy, edited by Roel
“Grasping Evil” is being translated on Veratales (Click here) but Liberspark (Click here) is hosting the chapters as well. You are encouraged to read on veratales.com for project updates. :)
Some phrases or expressions of the original are changed for ease of reading.
If a mistake or mistakes were found in this chapter, feel free to comment below.
Some terms are subject to change when better suggestions are selected.
All the internal monologues will be in italic form.