Sending the Divine

Sending the Divine

Chapter 45 - Birthmark on the Heart

The master and disciple sat on the rooftop of an abandoned house. 

Zheng Fengdao's body had been kicked off the roof by Yin Ci, who claimed it was "obstructing the view." The only thing left on the rooftop were patches of blood. The dark red liquid flowed over the blue tiles, reflecting the moonlight and turning the area pitch black.

Yin Ci urgently tended to Shi Jingzhi's wounds on his arms and legs. After stopping the bleeding, he bit down on his sleeve and ripped off a large piece of cloth. 

"Take off your shirt, let me see your injuries," he said.

Shi Jingzhi blinked his eyes. 

His shirt had been torn to shreds and soaked in blood, making it difficult to remove. In the darkness of the night, his disciple patiently waited with a slight frown on his eyebrows.

The way Yin Ci had looked at him earlier, saying "I prefer you like this," lingered in Shi Jingzhi's mind. 

When saying this, Yin Ci was not like the others before him - those who were deceived by his disguise, even if their gaze was serious, they were still staring at a non-existent person. His disciple, however, looked straight into his eyes, pinning his three souls and seven spirits in place. 

A strange and wonderful sense of satisfaction arose within him.

The only downside was that he couldn't see through Yin Ci. Shi Jingzhi observed him very carefully, but only found a few flaws. 

Yin Ci had hidden his identity as a descendant of the Su family and deliberately joined a small sect, which in itself was not strange. However, he was highly skilled in martial arts and had taken on a young master, which should have been enough to get by, but he had developed some unnecessary closeness. 

In Qizhou, it was not uncommon for them to stay in a dilapidated house and squeeze onto one bed. But now, living in a proper inn, Yin Ci still naturally squeezed into the bed with him, while Yan Qing and Su Si drew lots and took turns sleeping on the floor. 

However, once Yin Ci fell asleep, he became unusually still and never moved around. At most, he would reach out his hand when he was half awake to make sure there was a living person breathing next to him, without any hint of intimacy. 

It was only at that moment that his disciple would reveal a hint of true emotion. 

What was hidden in this man's heart? 

"After we burn the body later, there won't be any traces left of your sword technique," Shi Jingzhi carefully spoke. "But there are many eyes in the city, and news of me killing Zheng Fengdao will eventually spread. The Ku Mountain Sect will surely attract attention, are you not worried?" 

"It doesn't matter," Yin Ci said, keeping his head down as he continued to clean Shi Jingzhi's wound, not even bothering to look up. 

Shi Jingzhi held his breath, waiting for Yin Ci to say more, but he was met with the same deadpan expression. 

...It was infuriating. 

Just then, Yin Ci placed a hand on Shi Jingzhi's bare chest, causing him to instinctively flinch at the warmth of his fingertips. 

"Shizun, what's this?" 

Yin Ci pointed to a strange mole on Shi Jingzhi's chest. 

The mole was the size of a copper coin, with a dark greenish-black color and veins that spread out like blood vessels. Against his fair skin, it looked particularly eerie, like a malevolent spider. 

"Hmm? Oh... I had a high fever once when I was a child, and this thing appeared afterwards. Maybe it's related to my strange illness, but I haven't found any relevant clues." Shi Jingzhi was used to this painless and itchy mole, speaking in a light tone.

Yin Ci wiped away the bloodstains on Shi Jingzhi's chest and examined it closely, his brows furrowing tighter and tighter.

After a while, he sighed, "...I haven't seen it before, but it seems familiar."

"Well, people with liver disease can also have spider veins, but they're red. Maybe Ah Ci remembered it wrong." 

"Hmm." Yin Ci looked away and wrapped up another wound.

After wrapping up his master, Yin Ci dragged the corpses into the abandoned courtyard, hacked at the wounds randomly, and then skillfully set them on fire.

Finally, he carried Shi Jingzhi on his back and left the night watchmen who had come to investigate behind. 

The master and disciple plunged into a dark alley. Despite the darkness, the alley was clean, and the narrow starry sky above them helped to ease the pain of their wounds. 

"Speaking of which, since Ling Sect has discovered us, will Yan Qing and Su Si over there also...?" Shi Jingzhi lay on his disciple's back, playing with the white jade hairpin while casually asking. 

"Most likely," Yin Ci replied. 

Shi Jingzhi froze, "Then what should we do?" 

"Nothing," Yin Ci's tone was flat, "I only take care of you. Yan Qing has Su Si and Lord Bai with him. If nothing happens, they will come back on their own. If something does happen, they're already dead." 

Shi Jingzhi: "..."

"Ah Ci, as members of the Ku Mountain Sect, we still have to uphold some sense of righteousness," he said. 

Yin Ci didn't even turn his head, "Since Shizun has said so, I will go look for them later." 

When they arrived at the inn, he casually tossed the Fox Shi, wrapped in bandages, onto the bed and brewed a pot of hot sugar water. 

"Shizun, finish up tending to your wounds yourself. I'll be back soon." 

"Be careful." 

"I will." 

After Yin Ci left, Shi Jingzhi leisurely drank the sugar water, and his cold hands and feet gained some strength. Instead of immediately applying medicine, he lit some medicinal powder and summoned sparrows. 

Perhaps he had been out of touch for too long, as three sparrows flew to him at once. 

Shi Jingzhi looked at his bloody right arm and sighed, "Even writing is troublesome... Just pass on the message, saying I'm I'm fine." 

The three plump birds stood in a row at the window, tilting their heads in unison. 

"I--Am--Fine... Ah, forget it." Shi Jingzhi trembled as he peeled off the thin silk. After reading the letter, he didn't use cinnabar ink but dipped the quill in his own blood to write a reply. 

A few streets away, Yin Ci was also watching birds, but not the sparrows - he was watching top-notch carrier pigeons used for delivering messages. 

Having lived for so many years and accumulated wealth in various cities, Yin Ci never had to worry about affording carrier pigeons. With his accumulated status, even if his Ghost Skin Suit were damaged, it was easy for him to inquire about the latest news in the martial arts world.

Shi Jingzhi was definitely not just a simple medicine merchant's son. 

Sun Huaijin had never feared authority and now that he was in his twilight years, he had even less to fear. The only reason Sun Huaijin would lie to his face was because Shi Jingzhi had countless ties to him.

When Sun Huaijin was young, his only flaw was his lustful nature, having fathered forty to fifty children. Now that he was of the age of a great-great-grandfather, he had enough descendants to fill a small village. 

Having experienced too many farewells, Yin Ci rarely invested too much emotion in the people around him, let alone caring about such a huge family. But now, he had to care even if he didn't want to. 

After delivering the letter, Yin Ci dusted off his clothes and went to find Yan Qing and Su Si. 

At the same time, Yan Qing said in a low voice, "Ah Si, shall we take action?" 

If it weren't for the fact that the two of them were carrying large baskets of vegetables and squeezed together in the ditch, the atmosphere could have been even more serious. 

As an expert in escaping, Su Si had already noticed the Ling Sect followers who were following them. Taking advantage of their familiarity with each other since childhood, Su Si and Yan Qing didn't need to speak and cooperated seamlessly, never losing each other. 

They hugged Lord Bai and twisted and turned, shaking off seven or eight out of ten followers. But two of them were as sticky as chewing gum and couldn't be shaken off no matter what. 

"Those Corpse-Raising teams, I swear..." Su Si plucked the vegetable leaves off his head and tried to swallow down his curses. "I can't believe it, first it was the Red Hook Sect's Red Scorpion Feet, now it's the Corpse-Raising team from the Ling Clan. Am I cursed to be involved with these demon cults my whole life?"

"The Corpse-Raising team?" 

"They're similar to the Red Scorpion Feet, both are incredibly strong killers. But the Corpse-Raising team only takes orders from the Ling Clan's leader, they don't take contracts to kill people."

Yan Qing said, "...Okay, then let's not get involved. They're probably after the sect leader, they won't fight us."

Lord Bai nodded in agreement.

Su Si sneered, "San-zi, do you still think you're in the Taiheng Sect? The demon cults don't have a 'letting people go' policy. They're like a mangy dog, scaring them or running away won't work. You have to make them see their own blood before they'll consider backing off." 

The implication was clear - they were in for a fierce battle. 

Yan Qing pondered for a moment before speaking, "I'll go out and lead them away, you escape. You're faster than me and better at hiding. It's better for one person to die than two." 

Even in the darkness of the vegetable basket, Su Si's eyes burned with a fierce determination. "You really have been raised as a useless waste by Taiheng Sect. I worked so hard to find you, how could I just leave you behind?" 

"Do you have any other ideas?" 

"We bite them to death, even if we can't kill them, we'll tear off a piece of flesh. We'll risk our lives, and maybe we can still find a way out." 

Yan Qing furrowed his brow, clearly not impressed with this plan. 

But Su Si was determined not to run, and Yan Qing wasn't foolish enough to charge forward alone. After some discussion, they decided on a surprise attack from the vegetable basket. 

Finally, the two Corpse-Raising killers arrived at the ditch. 

A big white goose flew up and landed on one of the men's faces. The other man was about to draw his sword, but Su Si kicked him away with ease. Yan Qing, not very skilled in sword fighting, swung his sword at the killer with the goose on his head, trying to distract him.

 He just needed to buy time until Su Si finished off the other person, and then they could team up to kill this one. 

 Unfortunately, Yan Qing's martial arts were learned through theft and his foundation was unstable. How could he possibly defeat the skilled members of the zombie squad? 

 The opponent threw the goose against the wall, causing it to cry out in pain and play dead. Yan Qing gritted his teeth and used several Taiheng sword moves, but his opponent saw right through them. 

 The killer easily countered his moves, clearly seeing through Yan Qing's lack of skill. Seeing his colleague in a tough battle, the killer was about to dispose of Yan Qing first before taking on the bigger threat, Su Si. 

 Yan Qing couldn't hold back his opponent any longer, so he angrily shouted and opened his eyes. 

 The sky was dim, but not so dark as to cover up his ghost eyes. A pair of crimson pupils faintly reflected in the night, especially striking. 

 The killer was stunned in place, and Yan Qing had only just relaxed a bit when he was hit by the soaring killing intent. 

 "Where did this little bastard come from, daring to impersonate the bloodline of the Holy Leader?!" 

 Yan Qing: "..." It was indeed the demon cult, even their reaction was unreasonable. 

 He thought of his father's crippled leg from being beaten, and was not surprised - in the Ling Sect where lunatics gathered, weakness was the most serious sin. 

 The killer's attention did shift away from Su Si, but under that immense killing intent, Yan Qing couldn't even stand straight, let alone defend himself with his sword. He instinctively took a step back, stepped on the wet mud stained with blood, and fell into the ditch in a sorry state. 

 He had no chance to escape. 

 "Well, that's okay," Yan Qing thought. If he died, Su Si could still escape alone. 

 After all, the enemy was right in front of him. No matter how angry or scared he was, he couldn't conjure up strength out of thin air, let alone turn beans into soldiers and summon reinforcements. 

 It was just the way things were. He, like a weed, had been struggling to survive on his own for so many years, without any great ambitions. If he died now at the hands of a strong enemy, it would at least relieve his friend of a burden. 

 The killer's sword came at him, and Yan Qing couldn't help but close his eyes. 

 In an instant, warm blood splattered onto his eyelids. 

 "What the hell are you doing, you bastard?!" Su Si roared in anger. 

 He appeared out of nowhere, and the killer's short sword pierced through his palm. But Su Si didn't let go, instead he grabbed onto the hilt and restrained the killer's movements.

"Get up!" Su Si's voice was hoarse.

Yan Qing hesitated for a moment. "I..."

"Get the fuck up, even if you die, you die standing!" 

Su Si snatched the short sword from the killer, pulled it out of his palm, and blood splattered everywhere. He shielded Yan Qing behind him, staring fiercely at the two assassins in front of him.

The blood-stained short sword was thrown to Yan Qing's side, grazing his palm and sinking diagonally into the soil.

The two assassins regrouped and formed their formation again, and their childish ambush was in vain. Yan Qing slowly grasped the short sword, feeling a mix of emotions.

"Ah Si, I'm sorry."

"...It's okay now that you're awake." Su Si smiled briefly. 

"What do we do next?" 

"We have to separate them, you... San-zi?!" 

Yan Qing charged forward once again. 

He wasn't blindly rushing in, his crimson eyes seemed to be burning. The two assassins had just gained the upper hand and had relaxed for a moment. Yan Qing chose the one who had already been injured by Su Si, and with all his strength, he directly pushed the man back several yards. 

He guessed right, the other killer also became stunned when he saw Yan Qing's ghost eyes. 

This was the moment he was waiting for - whether it was anger or killing intent, it didn't matter. 

Yan Qing opened his arms and hugged the killer. His hands were covered in blood and wounds, slippery and weak, so he forcefully pinned the short sword into his left arm, wedging it between two bones in his forearm. His right hand tightly gripped the rough sword handle, locking it in place. 

As soon as the killer realized it, he was already trapped between Yan Qing's two arms, unable to exert any force. Yan Qing saw the killer struggling and bit down on his neck, blood spraying all over his face.

Despite not having much martial arts skill, Yan Qing had a strong grip and a heart full of bitterness and surprise. 

He had realised that now, he couldn't just die easily.

Ignoring the pain in his jaw, he held on tight to the killer, not letting go even as the blood filled his mouth with a disgusting smell. Although he had successfully restrained the killer, his back was completely exposed, leaving him vulnerable to a fatal blow.

But the other person was unable to do so.

Watching Yan Qing and the enemy fall away, Su Si let out a long breath, his eyes filled with self-mockery. 

"At this point, I was still keeping it from him," he gritted his teeth. "But I had to make sure none of you could escape..." 

The remaining killer was fuming, paying no attention to the muttering boy in front of him. He drew his knife and charged forward.

Su Si remained standing in place, but his aura suddenly disappeared. 

The evil glint in his eyes vanished, leaving only a vacant expression. Faced with the deadly attack, Su Si instead put away his and stood with empty hands, dodging each strike with ease. The killer's attacks were lethal, but they felt like hitting cotton, unable to harm Su Si in the slightest.

In the moment when the killer grew confused and slowed down, Su Si lunged forward and clawed at the enemy's throat. 

This move was twisted and cunning, incredibly difficult to defend against. The killer twisted his joints and used a dagger for defense. In an instant, the metallic dagger made a soft sound as the fingers were sliced off on the spot. 

Blood and flesh flew everywhere as the body hit the ground. 

With delicate fingers, he actually dug out the killer's throat completely. 

"It's all your fault. If you hadn't come to kill me, I wouldn't have had to hide it from him... This is even more uncomfortable than I thought." Su Si shook the blood off his hand, his tone chilling. 

"Just now... you..." The killer groaned silently, the light in his eyes quickly fading away. 

Su Si mercilessly lifted his foot and stomped on the killer's neck, crushing the wound into a pile of minced meat. Then he picked up a meat cleaver, grabbed the killer held by Yan Qing, and stabbed him in the back of the head. 

Blood mixed with the mud at the bottom of the ditch, and the stench became even more pungent. Yan Qing had lost a lot of blood, and Su Si carefully loosened his arm, but he was already delirious, his red eyes devoid of focus.

Su Si's lips were pale as he threw the short sword far away. "San-zi, you've worked hard."


"Let's go home."

Dawn was approaching, and the two of them were covered in blood and mud, carrying a seemingly dead goose. If they hadn't met Yin Ci halfway, they might not have made it back to the inn before daybreak.

Shi Jingzhi had just finished bandaging himself up when he had to tend to his two servants. The medicine box he had just filled was now half empty, and with bitterness, blood slowly dripped from the corner of his mouth.

Fortunately, everyone was young and strong, and there were no serious injuries. 

Three injured patients lay in the room all day, but the next day they were all able to get up. Ling Sect suffered losses and did not send anyone else to pursue them, so this chase could be considered over for now.

However, when Yan Qing woke up, he seemed distracted, as if he was contemplating some major life decision. Su Si still acted like his usual self, talking just as much as Lord Bai.

"Are we leaving tomorrow? Sect Leader, are we really going to charge ahead like this? Won't there be any problems? San-zi's arm won't heal anytime soon, and I'm in pain all over... Can't we rest for another two or three days?"

"Time waits for no one." Shi Jingzhi hugged the medicine box tightly, his expression cold. "The Buddha's Heart Formation was created by the Jianchen Temple and is not a dangerous formation. These minor injuries are nothing... Don't whine, my injuries are much worse than yours." 

Yin Ci said cooperatively, "Yes, the Buddha's Heart Formation has been there since the completion of the Jianchen Temple for nearly a thousand years without much stories of death. While it may be difficult to break through, it's not all a dead end."

Upon hearing this, even Yan Qing, who had been staring blankly, couldn't help but glance over - "Is this even human language? What does 'it's not all a dead end' mean?"

Su Si, on the other hand, lay flat on the floor like a dead fish, determined to avoid the crazy disciple. "Great Sect Leader, at least wait until our martial arts recover..."

Shi Jingzhi shook his head, "Resting any longer would be meaningless. I have investigated the Buddha's Heart Formation - no matter how strong your internal strength is, once you step into this formation, it will be sealed off completely. Once you enter the mountain, everyone is no different from an ordinary person and can only rely on their martial arts. It's better to rest inside the formation than to stay here and have more nightmares."

Su Si interrupted, "Wait a minute, is the Buddha's Heart Formation really that simple? I don't believe it." 

After a moment of hesitation, Shi Jingzhi spoke up, "...There is indeed another theory. However, the Buddha's Heart Formation only opens once every hundred years, and there are very few clues related to it. I am also unclear about the details."

"What theory?" asked the other person.

"The Buddha's Heart Formation focuses on questioning one's own heart. Once you enter the formation, you will inevitably face your Heart Demons."

Author's Note:

The "night watchmen" mentioned here are the ancient people who would shout out warnings about the dry weather and the danger of fire. They patrolled the city at night and would appear if there was a fire (?).


Happy readers make me float like a cloud in the sky. If you enjoy my translations and want to read them more quickly, I'll translate bonus chapters as a thank you for coffee!

Give me feedback at moc.ebircssutol@eyks.

Buy Me a Coffee at