The news of Ye Futian being defeated by Zhou Mu spread throughout Donghai Academy. Many students of the Finance Star school were not happy about this. Now that Ye Futian and Yu Sheng were cultivating under the headmaster, and Zhou Mu had entered the School of the Emperor Star, it seemed like the Finance Star school was lacking in comparison to the Emperor Star school. However, Ye Futian and Yu Sheng had no knowledge of any of this. For the past few days, they had been cultivating in the courtyard.
At this time, a loud noise sounded. Ye Futian was thrown out of the training room. The wings on his back fluttered, and even though it looked awkward, it allowed him to land safely on his feet rather than on his butt.
"You're able to withstand it for a longer period of time now," said someone from behind. Ye Futian turned his head and saw Yu Sheng and Yi Qingxuan chatting under the ancient tree.
"Do you guys even care about how I feel?" asked Ye Futian.
Yu Sheng took one look at him and shook his head. "No."
"This is payback, isn't it?" Ye Futian glared at Yu Sheng. He walked towards the ancient tree and asked, "Yi Qingxuan, who created that matrix in the room? My movements have improved a lot over the past couple of days, but the attack from the matrix is still too fast and too strong for me."
"I'm not sure either," Yi Qingxuan shook her head. "The purpose of the matrix is to refine your martial arts abilities. The stronger you are, the more Spiritual Qi you can utilize and the stronger the matrix gets. As long as you are able to withstand being in the matrix for a longer period of time every time, it means you're improving."
"I'm faster than Yu Sheng, so how come he can withstand it longer than I can?" Ye Futian asked, a little upset.
"Because he is physically stronger. You rely on the movement of your body more, so the gravity within the matrix has a stronger effect on you," explained Yi Qingxuan. Ye Futian nodded, and said, "After Yu Sheng cultivates in the matrix for a while, he'll be able to swiftly avoid attacks while overcoming the gravity problem. Then, he'll be ever more fearsome than he is now."
These past days, Ye Futian had been working on refining his movements. In actuality,
Ye Futian was not lacking in strength at all. The body refinement methods that Emperor
Ye Qing passed on to him enabled Ye Futian to refine his body to a monster's level, and
this place was very suitable for him to do so. Furthermore, there was a library containing
many books on battle tactics. He could take a look at those and cultivate accordingly.
According to Emperor Ye Qing's body refinement methods, the dragon refined the body,
the ape refined strength, and the roc refined speed. These were his personal findings from when he trained demons and monsters. His attack tactics were also learned from the demons and monsters he controlled. Based on Emperor Ye Qing's abilities, he must have been able to exert combat powers on par with a real dragon or a real golden roc. However, Ye Futian had not reached that level yet, and there was a limit to what he could comprehend. All he could do was to speed up the process by cultivating more powerful combat tactics.
"That reminds me! There are some rumors spreading about you at the academy," Yi Qingxuan said to Ye Futian.
"What kind of rumors?" he asked.
"Zhou Mu has been accepted into the School of the Emperor Star. After that, rumors started spreading at Donghai Academy that said we were really arrogant at the Luo Palace, but were eventually defeated by Zhou Mu." Yi Qingxuan spoke carefully. She seemed worried for Ye Futian. If the rumors were true, would they hurt his pride?
Ye Futian was shocked. "Did Zhou Mu say this personally?"
"I think the rumors came from a couple of students at Donghai Academy," Yi Qingxuan said gently.
Ye Futian shrugged and smiled. "Looks like someone doesn't really like me."
"So, the rumors aren't true?" Her eyes lit up. Zhou Mu was a five-starred Glory Plane cultivator. Even though Ye Futian was really good, he was still at a lower level than Zhou Mu. Therefore, when Yi Qingxuan heard the rumors, she was not completely sure they were false.
"It couldn't have been Zhou Mu," said Ye Futian. It did not seem like he had heard a single word Yi Qingxuan said. "Are people using this as an opening to bring up the battle between the Art Saint and my master?" Ye Futian asked her. He already seemed to know the answer to that question.
Yi Qingxuan saw how confident he was and smiled. "Yeah, there were some people talking about that. I'm thinking it's the people from the Flirting Star school who are spreading the topic around, just to piss you off. There are also people who were questioning my father's choice of choosing Yu Sheng as his disciple. Should we try to clear up these misunderstandings? We should let the people of Donghai Academy know that those are all rumors so they will stop misunderstanding you."
"If the people are willing to believe that the rumors are true, do you really think they'll change your mind just because you say otherwise?" Ye Futian laughed and continued, "You can never stop the mouths of others. Just let them be. One day, they'll know to shut their own mouths."
"You seem so nonchalant about this, but if you're so confident, then we'll wait to see all these people eat their words when you defeat Zhou Mu," said Yi Qingxuan with a smile.
"Rather than paying attention to these things, I'm more interested in the progress of your relationship with Yu Sheng," said Ye Futian. He gave Yin Qingxuan a look and watched as her face grew red. She glared at him and said, "I don't know what nonsense you're spouting. I'm leaving!" Afterwards, she took a peek at Yu Sheng before jogging off.
"Oh, Yu Sheng. You have to take initiative!" laughed Ye Futian.
"I'm going to cultivate now." Yu Sheng walked away, headed for the training room.
Ye Futian and Yu Sheng immersed themselves in cultivation. Yi Qingxuan would come to visit them often. Once in a while, Yi Qiang would stop by to give Yu Sheng pointers. As for Ye Futian, he was ignored. There was an obvious difference in the way the two were being treated, just like how Hua Fengliu treated Ye Futian and Yu Sheng differently back then. Ye Futian was hurt.
One day, Yi Qingxuan came to visit again. "Ye Futian, Yu Sheng. My father wants me to bring you guys to him," she said.
"Okay. Is something wrong?" asked Ye Futian.
"There are people visiting from the schools of the Emperor Star and the Treasury Star. They said they wanted to congratulate my father on taking on a new disciple." Yi Qingxue continued, "It's proper etiquette to have you guys go greet them."
The two young men nodded and followed wherever Yi Qingxuan led them to. The trio arrived at the guest hall of the School of the Finance Star. Seated in front of Yi Xiang were two people. They exuded such grace. These two people were from the schools of the Emperor Star and the Treasury Star. Behind each person stood two more people, presumably their students. Ye Futian had met the person from the School of the Emperor Star before. It was the elder he met at the Luo Palace.
"Greetings from Student Ye Futian." Ye Futian paid his respects to the two elders with a bow.
"We meet again," the elder said. "I never expected for you to come cultivate under Headmaster Yi Xiang after the events at the Luo Palace. Indeed, you are young and promising."
"Thank you, Senior," said Ye Futian.
"All those years ago, your master cultivated at the Emperor Star school, how could you go to the Finance Star school? Should I try to demand Headmaster Yi Xiang to pass you on to me?" the elder laughed.
"You're too funny, Senior." Ye Futian smiled weakly.
The elder laughed aloud and said, "Hua Jieyu cultivates at our school. Since you two know each other, you should come visit her when you get a chance."
Ye Futian was shocked. Since the elder already knew that Ye Futian was the Guqin Devil's disciple, then there was no hiding the fact that he knew Hua Jieyu. If things had come to this, then all he could do was admit it. "I've been wanting to go visit her, but since she studies up at the main building of the Emperor Star school, I did not want to intrude. But since Senior has extended the offer, I will gladly visit her when I get the chance. I hope it will not be of an inconvenience to you, Senior."
"Very good." The elder gave Ye Futian a meaningful look.
"Alright now, you youngsters go talk amongst yourselves. I have some things to discuss with Headmaster Yi Xiang." The elder smiled. The students standing left the hall along with Ye Futian's little trio.
Shu Yuyan was watching Ye Futian the whole time. When the elder told them to leave, she quickly ran to catch up with Ye Futian. "Wait up!" she shouted.
"Is there something I can help you with?" Ye Futian smiled at Shu Yuyan.
"My name is Shu Yuyan. I am Hua Jieyu's best friend," she told him. She felt as if she had just uncovered a secret. In the past, Hua Jieyu mentioned that she had someone she liked, but that was before Ye Futian came to Donghai Academy. Hua Jieyu probably had no idea that Ye Futian was going to show up a few days after what she had told Shu Yuyan.
After that, Hua Jieyu showed special interest in all things regarding Ye Futian. Shu Yuyan had never cared about the details. It was only when Zhou Mu entered the School of the Emperor Star that she found Hua Jieyu was the daughter of the Guqin Devil, Hua Fengliu. Then, she found out that Ye Futian was the Guqin Devil's disciple. It was obvious that Ye Futian and Hua Jieyu were previously acquainted. When all these findings were added up, Shu Yuyan was able to easily take a guess as to what was going on between the two.
She eyed the handsome young man in front of her. This guy who stirred up trouble right after being admitted should be the guy in Hua Jieyu's heart.
"My name is Ye Futian." He smiled and continued, "Is Hua Jieyu doing well?"
"Yeah," Shu Yuyan nodded. She was very curious about Ye Futian. What type of person was this guy who Hua Jieyu was so crazy about? There were so many things she wanted to say right now, but there were others around. Shu Yuyan could tell that Ye Futian and Hua Jieyu wanted to keep their relationship under wraps. So, this was not a good setting to talk about it.
"Are Junior Brother Ye Futian and Hua Jieyu close?" asked a smiling young man behind Shu Yuyan.
"Hua Jieyu is the beloved daughter of my master, of course we're close." Ye Futian took a look at the young man. He was maybe about 18. His sharp eyes made him look extremely menacing.
"Is that so?" laughed the young man. "I cultivate with Hua Jieyu at school and talk to her often, but I've never heard her speak about you. In the future, when you get a chance to visit our school, be sure to come look for me," the young man said to Ye Futian.
"From Senior Brother Mu Yunxuan's tone, it sounds like he's about to get the girl," chuckled another student from the Treasury Star school.
"A girl like Hua Jieyu won't be so easy to get. I still need time, but" Mu Yunxuan laughed. "Forget it, forget it."
Ye Futian frowned, and Yu Sheng gave Mu Yunxuan a once over.
"Oh! Junior Brother Ye Futian, I heard that you had some conflict with Junior Brother Zhou Mu at the Luo Palace, and now the whole academy knows. You shouldn't care too much though, it just a silly fight. It's not that big of a deal. You'll be able to get over it if you guys get a chance to talk it out," continued Mu Yunxuan.
"Alright. I'll definitely 'talk it out' with Zhou Mu when I get a chance." Ye Futian smiled.
"Now then, we don't want to keep you for too long. Junior Brother, you guys should head out first, we'll wait here for our teachers," said Mu Yunxuan.
"Alright." Ye Futian felt no need to be courteous and walked right out with Yu Sheng and Yi Qingxuan. Mu Yunxuan watched as Ye Futian and his friends walked away. The smile gradually disappeared from his face.
"Senior Brother Mu Yunxuan, what was your purpose for saying all that?" Shu Yuyan asked him. Naturally, she knew he was lying about his relationship with Hua Jieyu. It would not have mattered if Ye Futian and Hua Jieyu did not have any special relationship, but if they did, then Mu Yunxuan's words were meant to drive a wedge between them.
"Shu Yuyan, what was your purpose of catching up with Ye Futian. Has Hua Jieyu mentioned him to you?" Mu Yunxuan asked.
"I just wanted to say hello since he is an acquaintance of Hua Jieyu. I had no other intentions," she said.
"Really now?" Mu Yunxuan smiled and picked up his feet to walk away.