The moment the last of the parents left with their kid, satisfied by the show that they were graced with and Nik's encouraging words, Xiu snapped her eyes wide, tilted her body and swung her arm towards Nik's face. Her arms morphed into flaming fox claws while Nik tilted his chair backward with a calm expression. Murder was on Xiu's mind from the moment Shen Hong left, the target, on the other hand, was only confirmed now!
"If you are willing to die by my brother's hands," Xiu began, her voice cracking as brutal flames clad her figure. It was her real guard!
"Then," Her tears dried up as they streaked through her cheeks, unable to resist the heat from Xiu's flames. Her eyes reddened and cracked as she stood up and turned towards Nik, "you might as well die through my hands. Less painful and a quicker option, don't you think so?"
Violent rage seethed within her pupils, corrupting her sadness and worry into feelings of destruction!
"Enough of this self-pity!"
Nik began as he closed in and caught her flaming arms. The real guard of the Scarlet Flame Fox was in the shape of a dress made of flames that even affected her crimson hair and ears. Her canines grew, and there was a crimson tattoo over her eyelids. While his hand felt the sting from the heat, it was far from enough to become threatening as Xiu stretched her neck with her maws wide open!
"Self-pity? You mock the third strongest man that has no moral compassion and is now more than willing to hurt you and anything around you!
Your peaceful death is the only option you have!"
She barked, her spit flying out of her mouth but evaporating in a moment's notice.
"What's that gotta have to do with you?"
Nik sneered and tightened his grip around Xiu's furry wrists coated in flame, pulling a painful expression from her face, "Everything, dammit! It has got everything to do with me!
I can't live with myself if Shen Hong killed someone I..."
A desperate expression touched her face as her form receded. The crackling sound of the flames turned into silence as the only source of sound turned out to be Xiu's snivels.
"I can't let him hurt you!"
She screamed, her fists clenched as she tried to struggle out of Nik's grip. She instantly started to kick on Nik's foot only for him to remain standing still and tall.
Turning her face up, her featured marred with tear and snot. She whispered once again, "Please... don't let him hurt you! Please *sniff* I beg of you!"
"He really did a number on you..."
Nik whispered as he kept gazing into Xiu's eyes. What sort of torturous treatment she went through, Nik did not know, and honestly, wouldn't give a shit about. He is a man with a questionable past, and if he has learned one thing, then it is the fact that every single person in the multiverse will have their own sob stories.
The past does not define the future.
Anyone who thinks that it does is full of shit!
Throwing his concerns to the wind, Nik leaned down and took Xiu's lips. Vulnerable, she was, and taking advantage, he did. But, leaving her without any support was not something Nik had learned.
He let go of her wrists and coiled his arms around her waist and back. One hand stroking her hair, and the other one stroking her h.i.p.s as Xiu's hands naturally fell on his broad shoulders.
Xiu's stupor soon receded, and she instantly reeled back. Her body unable to move back made her torso retreat as Xiu breathed deeply with a face full of rage and immediately pinched both of Nik's shoulders!
"What are you doing! YOU DUMBO!!"
Nik winced, not from the pinch, but the nickname.
Xiu took a series of deep breaths, not in the slightest bit affected by the fact that she was in the arms of a man! Her indignant gaze remained on Nik's casual expression, and she huffed out, "What's the big idea?"
"Like you turning into a flame incarnate was a superb decision?"
Nik mocked with a snort as Xiu inquired with a higher volume, "Who was the one who aggravated my brother?"
Nik sneered and took an even higher tone. A just one at that, "Then who is the one still hiding shit from me? Want me to force the truth out of you, huh?"
"I'd like to see you try"
Xiu's snort was instantly sealed as Nik leaned down and took her lips with a raging passion. He pushed her body against his as he continued to ravage her rough little tongue that destroyed countless men in spirit and ego.
Nik huffed as he pulled back while leaving an enthralled Xiu with a crimson flush on her face.
"If you aren't going to say it, then let me do the heavy work," Nik smiled, "I like you, Xiu. Everything about you. From your arrogance to your bunny-like expression. Everything!"
His words rung like a gigantic bell in Xiu's head as he continued, "I am going to fight that snobbish old man who dares to pressurize my students with his spiritual pressure.
Now, are you willing to share your past with me?"
Xiu's expression finally grew hesitant before she nodded. If Nik had already decided to die, he should at least know her story.
"Oh... I understand."
Nik nodded and then stood up. It was already evening, and he was slightly reluctant to miss his class with Xiu Yin. After a moment's thought, he decided to bed down and pick up a grey strand of hair. While Nik blew on Shen Hong's hair, he controlled the wind to manipulate the landing of the strand near his table.
"Ah... and here I thought I shouldn't feel pity for someone's past," Nik sighed softly. While Xiu felt relieved after unloading her past, she simply couldn't relax after knowing what would happen to Nik.
A Dark Guild Activist. That was Shen Hong's hidden identity. Dark Guild is already known for its terrorist actions and the information that the family head of one of the three high nobles being a friend of such an organization made Nik realize that even after such smooth policies, corruption would still ensnare the loathsome's heart.
Under Xiu's widened eyes, Nik summoned a slightly eerie dollhouse and placed the strand of hair within the opening of the house. Out of the four dolls made of the white sac, one of them morphed into Shen Hong's figure with a shrill cry. But, the doll seemed to be bent with a painful expression!
"What is this?"
Xiu asked with a strange expression as Nik pocketed the Curse House once again and smiled grimly, "The first of many pain I will inflict on Shen Hong."
He turned on his heels and walked out as Xiu followed instantly.
"What did you say?"
Ye Zong's butt had barely snuggled on its seat when a messenger barged in and relayed a piece of startling news.
Nik went ahead and knocked on Shen Hong's gates!
The action did not only reach the city lord, but everyone Nik had issued a challenge to. Virtually, the entire nobility of the city! The Messengers of the various families instantly flanked the Sacred Family's Estate with recording inscriptions to not leave out a single detail. While most of Shen Hong's abilities are public knowledge, in his previous battle, Nik barely showed his full capacity.
Meanwhile, within the deepest recesses of the Sacred Family's Estate, Shen Hong coughed blood and quickly chugged on his medicine before wiping his lips clean. His expression grew dark as he thought of Nik's actions in the morning, and recalling Xiu's act of not even defending the family honor, his gaze grew darker.
"I'll have to whip her once again... she is going out of control."
"Try to lure Nik into the estate. We can easily finish him off."
From the shadows, a calm voice advised as Shen Hong sneered, "I don't need you punks to assist me with a bastard. I'll tear him apart. Meanwhile, find me an elixir to cure myself."
Shen Hong commanded as the voice fell silent.
Amongst a rather large crowd far away from the gates of the Sacred Family's estate, Nik walked out and moved towards the estate. His steps casual, as if he did not insult the Patriarch of the family and came here to engage in a friendly chat about the paradox that has eluded humanity since the beginning of time B.r.e.a.s.ts or Ass? Which one of them is the pair chosen by the heavens?