HSSB56: The Red Flower Withers
Lin Yushao lay on her back, gazing dazedly at the clear blue sky.
The blue sky was the same as it always was, with leisurely white clouds floating dreamily about.
However, her clothes which had been as white as snow were currently covered with dust, their colour having dimmed as they lay scattered on the ground.
There was a huge wound located between her chest and abdomen, from which no fresh blood was actually flowing.
Rather, it was actually jet black all over as it resembled burnt charcoal that had been charred after use.
The young girl no longer exhibited any signs of life whatsoever.
As she lay dying, the scene of what had happened just now once again surfaced before her eyes, as that furious voice from before could still faintly be heard resounding within her ears.
“They said that you heavily injured junior apprentice-brother Lan.
Just why did you do that; what happened”
“That bastard Yan Zhaoge harmed me time and time again.
Lan Wenyan is one of his dogs; in leaving him alive, I was already being merciful!”
“There should be a misunderstanding somewhere; let’s return to the clan together to explain things clearly to the Elders…”
“If I returned to the clan now, it would be like walking right into a trap; do you wish for me to die in the hands of that dog Zhao father-and-son combo”
“I’ll ask one last time.
Will you leave with me, or will you go to look for Yan Zhaoge”
“Ye Jing, calm yourself down a little.
I’ve talked with senior apprentice-brother Yan a few times before, and he has no intention of specifically targeting you; there must be a misunderstanding somewhere.”
“…If you’re not on my side, then you’re someone on Yan Zhaoge’s side.
And someone on Yan Zhaoge’s side, is someone who is my enemy!”
Up till now, the shock and bewilderment within Lin Yushao’s eyes had still yet to completely fade.
Never would she have thought that her unexpected reunion with Ye Jing after such a long time would actually turn out to have such an ending.
Lin Yushao’s gaze gradually slackened, as her face was instead filled with an expression of release.
“Maybe from that moment I left for Broad Creed Mountain along with senior apprentice-brother Yan, all this had already been destined to happen”
“This is just my fate…I guess”
This day, the red flower that had yet to truly reach full bloom, withered.
Outside the Eastern Tang Kingdom’s Overlooking Abyss City, in the wilderness close to the Sealing Dragon Abyss and the Luliao Mountains, there stood an old man, his hands behind his back.
“Lin Yushao” The old man turned his head to look at the person behind him, “This old man remembers; it was that female disciple who was entangled with both Yan Zhaoge and Ye Jing, right”
The old man was none other than Broad Creed Mountain’s Principal Elder in the Eastern Tang, Yan Xu.
The martial practitioner behind him nodded his head, “That’s right, and she was also a somewhat promising young disciple.
Sadly, when she was discovered, she had already passed away, and there was no longer any way to save her.”
“Could you tell who did it”
“We were unable to concretely determine who the killer was; we were only able to deduce that the person in question must be cultivating in a martial art that holds an extraordinarily strong power of fire.”
Yan Xu asked, “In coming to the Eastern Tang, was it to search for Yan Zhaoge, or for Ye Jing”
That martial practitioner shook his head, saying, “This subordinate was unable to confirm this, but it was most likely for Yan Zhaoge.”
“From what this subordinate knows, when on the road to the Eastern Tang, Lin Yushao had already learnt of the news of Ye Jing having made it out alive from the Sealing Dragon Abyss.”
“Moreover, she had followed Yan Zhaoge previously after all; if she knew what was good for her, she would have kept a distance from that Ye Jing.”
“Before, when it was unknown whether Ye Jing was alive or dead, being concerned about him would still be fine, only being natural.
Now that she had known that Ye Jing was still alive, however, in still coming to the Eastern Tang, it should probably be because she had come for Yan Zhaoge all along.”
Here, the martial practitioner hesitated slightly.
Yan Xu asked mildly, “What”
That martial practitioner answered, “It’s some rumours that have yet to be confirmed.
According to these rumours, after Yan Zhaoge arrived in the Eastern Tang, he began walking rather close with another female disciple of our clan, Sikong Qing.”
“Could it be that Lin Yushao felt that her own position had been threatened After all, she and Yan Zhaoge were not actually engaged.
You know, young people; for their thoughts to change a little is also normal.”
Hearing his words, Yan Xu fell into a deep silence as he did not speak.
It was only after quite some time had passed that he answered, “Take this old man to look at that female disciple’s corpse.”
As he saw the wound on Lin Yushao, Yan Xu pondered deeply for a long time, before suddenly extending his own palm.
As his aura-qi began to surge, his palm turned purplish red, as though a clump of real, purple flames had agglomerated within.
This was exactly Broad Creed Mountain’s direct lineage martial art, one of the Eight Extreme Arts, the Tu**a Palm.
His face expressionless, Yan Xu pressed his palm on Lin Yushao’s wound.
The girl’s corpse shuddered slightly, as the purple glow on the surface of her body vanished in a flash.
Yan Xu retracted his palm, before turning his head to look at that martial practitioner.
“Yan Zhaoge has also cultivated in the Tu**a Palm…” that martial practitioner’s heart skipped a bit, before he lowered his head, saying, “When this subordinate discovered Lin Yushao, she had already passed away, the identity of her killer a total mystery.
However, when considering the fact that she died under our clan’s Tu**a Palm, the scope of the investigation can be narrowed greatly.
This subordinate will go investigate immediately.”
Yan Xu nodded mildly, “Carry out a thorough investigation; although this Lin Yushao was but a white-clothed disciple, she was still a member of our clan.
How can we let her die while not knowing what happened to her”
“Other than that, carefully search around the area where this little girl’s corpse was discovered; perhaps there will be traces of Ye Jing’s whereabouts there.”
“It’s fine if you don’t find him; but if you do, bring him directly to see me, and do not let word of it spread.
If there are any incriminating traces left behind, clean them up on the spot; do not leave clues behind for anyone else.”
The martial practitioner’s heart stirred slightly as he bowed and replied, “Yes.”
Within the Luliao Mountains, Yan Zhaoge’s group was currently in the midst of returning.
Yan Zhaoge pondered as he walked, on the news that he had obtained from Zhao Yuan, Zhao Hao and the others.
“They do not merely have a gathering point in the East Heaven Region; they have one in the North Heaven Region as well,” Yan Zhaoge calculated within his heart, “Doesn’t that also mean than other than the Ghost Hatchet Elder Han Sheng, this power also possesses other Martial Grandmaster experts”
“If this power has a Martial Grandmaster like Han Sheng as its leading figure in the North Heaven Region, is it that Han Sheng and the others join hands in leading their respective squads, or is there still someone else even higher up in their organisation than them”
Yan Zhaoge made a noise with his mouth, “They have people in the East Heaven Region and the North Heaven Region; what about other places then”
“What about outside the Heaven Domain itself”
Yan Zhaoge’s eyes narrowed into slits, “The East Heaven Region has the Sealing Dragon Abyss, while the North Heaven Region has the Infinite Shadowy River; both of these extend out from Hell…”
“The Ghost Hatchet Elder causing trouble in the Sealing Dragon Abyss for his own purposes; if others from this organisation really do make a move, it’s probable that their movements will also be related to Hell…”
Yan Zhaoge’s instincts told him that this was a little bad.
In the Eight Extremities World of after the Great Calamity, the first and foremost of the few significant things that could affect the balance of the world itself was the Earth Domain now turned Hell, as well as the invasion of the Fire Devil race.
It was no wonder that whenever things were related to Hell, everyone’s nerves would also be frazzled.
“Still, it’s good that they were exposed whilst moving in secret.
This way, finding clues and leads on them will also be much easier.” Thinking thus, Yan Zhaoge’s gaze turned to fall on Zhao Hao, walking within the crowd.
“How should I deal with him En, no matter what, I should also let Uncle Zhao know beforehand.” Yan Zhaoge curled his lips.
Regardless of whether it was his father or his second apprentice-uncle, neither would be happy to see a prince hostile to Broad Creed Mountain becoming the Eastern Tang Crown Prince, and by extension its next king as well.
As he pondered, a black-clothed martial practitioner suddenly drew over to report, “Young Master, urgent news.”
Yan Zhaoge raised his brows, “What, you’ve found Ye Jing”
That martial practitioner shook his head, saying softly, “There’s been news from Overlooking Abyss City.
Miss Lin Yushao, has been killed.”
“Eh” On hearing the news, Yan Zhaoge could only find it absurd beyond compare.
 A sound of agreement somewhat common to the Chinese; a nice addition to your vocabulary if you don’t already know it