Chapter 25: The Spirit King
As soon as Yun Hai entered the Immortal Capital that day, there was a Lingtai Immortal envoy with a long piece of jade in his hand waiting for him.
The immortal envoy looked at him and greeted him with a smile, “Novice Official.”
Immortals liked to speak the last syllable lightly, with an upwards tone.
These two words sounded very pleasant to the ear and even gave a feeling of intimacy.
He asked, “Novice Official”
The Lingtai immortal envoy replied, “Any immortal who has not been given an immortal title yet is called this way.”
Yun Hai: “Does everyone have to call me that”
The Lingtai immortal envoy nodded, “Everyone.”
Yun Hai: “Even the Immortal Leader”
The envoy didn’t know how to reply for a second: “”
Yun He waved his hand, “Never mind, it was just a random thought.”
The Lingtai immortal envoy led him up a very long staircase and pointed to the distance, “Novice Official, all the new members of the Immortal Capital must go to the Lingtai1 to worship the heavens and receive a Heavenly Decree, then go see the Lingtai Twelve Immortals.
After all, almost all the immortals at the Immortal Capital honor and respect the Lingtai Twelve Immortals, especially Immortal Leader Mingwu.2
Yun Hai was naturally extremely happy.
After all, Hua Xin didn’t visit the mortal realm often, and he could only meet him a few times a year at most.
“Wait, you said almost” Yun Hai asked.
“Yes,” explained the immortal envoy, “there are two exceptions.”
He should have explained this to many newly ascended immortals.
Seeing Yun Hai’s curiosity, he explained, “Those two didn’t ascend through cultivation, but rather, were ordained directly by Heavens.”
He first explained to Yun Hai what it meant to be ordained, then continued, “All the decrees of the Heavens are directly passed into those two’s hands, not the Lingtai.
No one else can read them, and naturally, the Lingtai Twelve Immortals have no say over them either.”
“They accept Heavenly decrees directly” Yun Hai was shocked.
Due to the influence of Heavenly Inquiring Palace, Yun Hai has always thought that the Lingtai Twelve Immortals were the top of all immortals, and Mingwu Hua Xin was the leader of the twelve.
Now, hearing that there were two people whose position was even higher than that, he really couldn’t comprehend.
“Then doesn’t that mean they’re even ranked higher than the Immortal Leader…” said Yun Hai.
The Lingtai immortal envoy couldn’t find a proper way to reply either.
After all, he was an immortal of the Lingtai.
After a pause, he said while trying to avoid the question, “Those two do not have to care about anything.
They don’t depend on offerings, they are not under the command of the Lingtai, and they do not interfere with the affairs with other Immortals.
They simply have a mediocre relationship with everyone.”
“What do those two look like What are their immortal titles Are they easy to recognize Do I have to avoid them if I see them” After all those questions, Yun Hai gave a smile, “I like to joke around.
If I accidentally offended them because I didn’t know who they were, that wouldn’t be too good.
Can you please tell me more”
The immortal envoy replied, “One of them has the Immortal Title of ‘Tiansu’3 When ordained, he was given the word ‘Mian’4 by the Heavens.
He is in charge of punishment and forgiveness, and he has three mourning nails on his ear bone.
He’s rather easy to recognize.”
Yun Hai: “Mourning nails Why are they called ‘mourning’”
The Lingtai immortal envoy replied, “Dunno, everyone calls them that.
Tiansu was ordained a very long time ago, before the Lingtai Twelve Immortals was even a thing.
All immortals respected and feared him.
In addition, he doesn’t have a very good temper, so no one dares to ask too much about him.”
Yun Hai said in his head: Uhh, then I guess I’ll try to avoid him if I can.
“Then who’s the other one”
“The other one… the other one was ordained even earlier,” replied the immortal envoy, “His Immortal Title is Spirit King, and when ordained, he was given the word ‘Zhao’ by the heavens.”5
Yun Hai was still waiting for further information when he suddenly saw the immortal envoy in front of him stop.
He seemed to have seen someone behind him, as he quickly turned his full body towards him, held his jade in front, and gave a very formal bow.
Yun Hai was just about to see who it was for the immortal envoy to bow so respectfully to, when he heard him say, “Master6 Tiansu, it’s good to have you here at Lingtai.”
Yun Hai was stunned for a moment.
He quickly turned his head around and saw Tiansu Immortal coming up the stairs from behind them.
He looked extremely young, and had a cold yet handsome face.
Among the numerous immortals, he was indeed very easy to recognize, because even though they were still several stair-steps away, one could clearly sense the strong sinister energy from his mourning nails.
They looked as cold as an icy jade, and he gave off a conflicting sense of both arrogance and coldness.
But it was just that Tiansu wasn’t very good at relationships, not that he was trying to be arrogant or rude.
He gave a nod toward the immortal envoy and then said, “I’m here for something.”
The Lingtai immortal envoy replied, “We have a new Novice Official ascend today.
The Immortal Leader and the others are yet to meet him.
Can I bring this Novice Official to them first”
Hearing “new Novice Official,” Yun Hai smiled and also gave him a respectful bow, “If you guys need to go to the Lingtai, please go on ahead.
I can wait.”
Tiansu glanced over and nodded at him.
Then he still said in a low and indifferent voice, “Go on with your worship, I am not looking for Hua Xin.”
While speaking, the cold mist at the entrance of Immortal Capital moved, and the greetings of the gatekeepers and other envoys also came from afar.
They all sounded very respectful.
What a lovely day.
Yun Hai thought as he was about to lift his feet and continue to walk up.
But he saw that Tiansu Immortal paused for a second, looking over the steps to the entrance.
Then, the Lingtai immortal envoy also quickly bowed again, paying his respects to what was over there.
Yun Hai turned around curiously and saw a figure passing through the cold fog.
That figure was wearing a plain robe with a color of white jade.
His sleeve cuffs were very loose, with silver dark lines printed on them.
He looked tall and his legs looked long, giving off a noble and dignified look.
After passing through the cold fog, he did not continue walking, but turned sideways and seemed to be waiting for someone.
A moment later, two servant boys followed behind.
One of them was holding a longsword in his arms, muttering and complaining, “Master, it’s really heavy.”
The sword was very beautiful, and the scabbard was carved with fine silver wire.
But looking at the way the servant boy was struggling to step forward, it looked like it was certainly very heavy.
“Not as heavy as you~ I’ll take it.” The man replied.
Hearing this, the servant boy immediately “came back to life”.
He quickly tossed the sword forward, and the man caught it.
The sword twirled lightly in a few circles between his long fingers and was firmly grasped again.
He turned around and walked up the steps with his sword in hand. 7
Only then did Yun Hai realize that the man was wearing a mask.
That mask, like the sword sheath, was decorated with very beautiful and complex filament patterns, also revealing extravagance.
Among the immortals, they were as easy to recognize as the mourning nails on Tiansu’s ear bone.
Yun Hai whispered to the Lingtai immortal envoy: “He is…”
The Lingtai immortal envoy replied quietly, “He is the other person I was talking about.”
When he was walking up the steps unhurriedly, the sunlight shone through the cold mist of Immortal Capital, giving his slender outline a bright edge.
Yun Hai suddenly remembered the word given to him by the Heavens, Zhao.
“Why does the Spirit King wear a mask Is there some sort of taboo” He asked again.
The Lingtai immortal envoy continued in his quiet voice, “Not really a taboo, it’s just that every time he receives a Heavenly decree, he would go complete the task with a mask on.”
“What kind of tasks”
“Only the Heavens know.” The envoy spoke nothing more.
Yun Hai originally thought that the Spirit King would be as cold and unapproachable as Tiansu, but he soon found out that he was wrong.
The Spirit King walked up a few steps, then suddenly stopped.
He was wearing a mask, but he seemed to be able to see clearly, as he tilted his head slightly in the direction of Tiansu.
He didn’t speak, but his two servants gave Tiansu a bow and shouted across the steps, “Master, our Master said the prank earlier is just a misunderstanding, we’ll apologize!”
Tiansu showed no expression.
Hearing them shout, he moved him slightly, then said, “Forget it.”
“Master, he said forget it!” The servant boy showed a smile.
The Spirit King gave a soft “oh”, and lifted the lower edge of his mask, revealing some of his white chin and nose.
He smiled as well, then let go of his hand, and the mask covered back onto his face.
He pushed his servant boy with his sword and then walked in the other direction.
Perhaps it was because Yun Hai had already met those two on the first day he arrived at Immortal Capital.
He had an early impression of them before he met the other immortals, and hence he was not deeply affected by others’ rumors.
So in the next hundred years, he became one of the few people in Immortal Capital who had somewhat of a friendship with both of those two people.
His relationship with Tiansu Immortal was a bit lighter, after all, Tiansu had his unusual temperament there.
Also because he was in charge of punishment and forgiveness, there was almost no personal affection for him.
His relationship with the Spirit King was a little better, it was also because of his temperament.
Although he had a friendship with them, Yun Hai was still curious for a while: it was obvious that the Spirit King was not a cold and unsocial person.
In fact, he was the exact opposite; he was a person who loved lively fun.
Yet, for some reason, he chose to live in a rather remote area.
In the huge Immortal Capital, there were tens of thousands of Yao Palaces.
But he lived farthest from the rest of the immortals.
Not only was that a lonely place, it was also next to the immortal-abolishing platform which everyone avoided.
He asked the Spirit King before: “Is this the kind of place you like”
The Spirit King replied, “It works.”
He also mentioned it to Hua Xin once, who replied, “I don’t know, he probably has his own reasons.”
Lingtai and those two have nothing to do with each other, and Hua Xin was the kind of person who wasn’t curious about others.
So when they were together, they rarely talked about those things.
More often, Yun Hai was trying to make the Master happy.
… or unhappy.
Perhaps when Hua Xin went to pick him up, the look of “no sorrow and no joy” was stuck in his heart for too long, so that he had an obsession for a while.
He wanted some expression on his Master’s face.
Unlike the divine statues and the portraits’ gentle smiles, what he wanted was real happiness or anger…
Anything was better than nothing.
Sometimes, while he rejoiced because he made the Master laugh, he also himself in his heart—
He found this strange too.
In the mortal world, he worked hard to cultivate, in hopes that he could one day step into the Immortal Capital.
But now that he was really here, he was doing everything in his capabilities just to try and make the most immortal-like Immortal Leader laugh.
He has failed many times, but succeeded many times too.
Even the immortal envoys began to say that the Immortal Leader seemed to be different from before.
Once, he looked at the way Hua Xin was laughing and thought to himself: Living like this with his master for a few decades is pretty nice.
At least much better than the beggar he was back when he was a mortal.
But later, he found that wouldn’t work.
Yun Hai was in charge of mortals’ joy and sorrow, basically the single immortal that has to deal with the most with mortals.
Inevitably, he had to meet those who he once swore to kill.
He avoided them three times, but on the fourth time, he couldn’t hold back anymore.
Those people originally were supposed to live a long life, which angered him even more.
He killed them all.
A total of thirty-one people, still less than the number of his family members that were killed along with his father.
After killing them, he knelt in front of the Lingtai, waiting for Heavenly punishment.
That was the first time he saw Hua Xin being infuriated.