I’ve Led the Villain Astray, How Do I Fix It? - Chapter 398
I’ve Led the Villain Astray, How Do I Fix It?
Xu Ziyan felt surge of excitement in his heart, but his expression remained unchanged. What the innkeeper said had just addressed the very puzzle that he could not figure out and he had not expected to stumble upon the secret information so unexpectedly.
With a faint smile, he raised a hand to motion for the inn’s attendant to bring the finest spiritual tea, which would be charged to his tab.
The little skeleton who had just been threatened by Xu Zirong brought up the spiritual tea tremblingly, and then quickly scurried away, as if there was some cannibalistic monster guarding the place.
(The monster in question, Xu Zirong: …)
The innkeeper was in a great mood seeing Xu Ziyan’s approach, so he took advantage of the fact that there were not many customers around and sat on a chair, beginning to chatter away and dispelling Xu Ziyan and Xu Zirong’s doubts.
It must be said that Ziyan was quite fortunate. The biggest chatterbox in Ghost Jiangnan happened to be the owner of the inn. If it were not for Xu Ziyan’s choice to approach the talkative individual, who liked spreading secrets everywhere, wanting to find out secrets about the small town would take a long time.
The innkeeper drank the spiritual tea and began sharing. It turned out that everyone in the town of Ghost Jiangnan, everyone lived under the protection of the Great Ghost Deity. The annual Ghost Deity Festival was also held to express gratitude for the deity’s protection.
With the protection of the Great Ghost Deity, all the people in the town would not die. Even if someone was killed, the person who had killed them would take their place and continue to live instead.
Hearing that, Xu Ziyan could not help thinking of the cultivators, who were forced to act as laborers, and he immediately felt a chill down his spine. Fortunately, he had not been quick to resort to violence upon arriving in the town. Otherwise, if he had accidentally killed someone, he would never be able to get out of there.
After those people took over the life of laborers, they could still retain their own consciousness, but after the Ghost Deity Festival was over, their bodies would be reclaimed by the Great Ghost Deity and given back to the deceased townspeople.
In other words, once the Ghost Deity Festival concluded, those four individuals would transform back into the townspeople’s original appearances as laborers. Undoubtedly, the four cultivators would naturally cease to exist.
That was a relatively unfavorable way to become a town resident, but to a certain extent, those four cultivators would be achieving absolute immortality. Of course, whether they enjoyed that kind of “immortality” was a different matter. →.→
Another way to become a town resident was to go through some kind of “ritual” during the Ghost Deity Festival to become a resident and enjoy immortality.
People like Xu Ziyan, who actively sought to join the town, was relatively rare. After all, the location of the Ghost Jiangnan town kept shifting, which made it occasional for people to enter. The innkeeper was not surprised by Xu Ziyan’s choice, after all, few people could resist the allure of immortality.
It was just that… the flames in the innkeeper’s eyes were slightly flickering. He felt inexplicably in a trance. In his recollection, the town used to be bustling with activity, and merchants often visited to do business. Yet, on the other hand, he vaguely felt that it seemed to be a long time since strangers appeared in town.
Those two contradictory thoughts flashed through his mind for just a second and then vanished. He opened his mouth and laughed happily. Life in the small town was quite monotonous. Even the complaints from the guests were always the same. It seemed like it had been a very, very long time since new people had joined.
Xu Ziyan successfully obtained information from the innkeeper, and had a thorough discussion with Tianle, who was in invisible mode.
In the daytime during the next day, Tianle took advantage of the information obtained from Xu Ziyan, and took the initiative to express his fondness of living in the town to the townspeople. As expected, he succeeded in getting more information from them.
The things heard from the townspeople seemed to be different from what the skeleton innkeeper got. In other words, the townspeople in the daytime were absolutely ordinary people. It seemed that in their eyes, aside from the Great Ghost Deity, there was no one with special powers.
However, during the black-and-white state, the various kinds of ghostly creatures never denied the existence of cultivators. They even exchange their own cultivation experience with each other, but they never seemed to use those powers, as if their only purpose of cultivation was to become human.
That was actually a very strange thing, but in Xu Ziyan’s view, there were already too many strange things in the small town, so he was not concerned about encountering more of them.
Inside the room at the inn, Xu Ziyan wrote on the table with his fingers that were dipped in tea, “So, what exactly are the sacrifices for the Ghost Deity Festival? Zirong said that the blood on the altar was human blood. Could they be intending to use the townspeople for the sacrifice?”
Tianle shook his head, “No, they said that they used livestock, like pigs and goats, for the sacrifice, not humans.”
Xu Ziyan’s fingers paused slightly, and continued writing, “Could it be that… they want to use you as a sacrifice?”
Tianle’s hair stood on end instantly, but he had to admit that Xu Ziyan’s deduction made sense. Xu Zirong’s ability to discern blood was definitely accurate. If he said it was human blood, then it most likely was.
However, the news Tianle inquired about was that pigs and goats were sacrificed, which proved that the townspeople were not telling them the truth at all.
Why would the decent townspeople lie to him? Unless they were indeed planning to use Tianle as a sacrifice, other reasons were really hard to justify.
Tianle was frightened by Xu Ziyan, but he did not know what to do. At present, both he and Xu Ziyan were both ordinary people. If he had to fight, with his current skill, it was not a problem to handle three to five. The difficult thing was that the unity of the entire town. No matter how good he was, two fist were no match for four hands, and he would inevitably be captured.
“Don’t worry first. I was just having a guess earlier. Perhaps the other party really had alternative methods for the sacrifice.” Xu Ziyan saw that Tianle was breaking out in cold sweat, so he quickly comforted him.
After all, there were many mysteries in the small town. Maybe they really used pigs and goats as sacrificial offerings.
Judging from Tianle’s expression, it was obvious that he had not been comforted. However, he also understood that he and Xu Ziyan were in different planes of existence, and there was no way to physically interact with each other, so he could only rely on himself for everything.
In the afternoon of that day, the townspeople began to leave their homes, carrying their offerings to the square. The once empty square was now packed with people. Many acquaintances chatted and waited for the Ghost Deity Festival to begin.
Tianle also attended the Ghost Deity Festival accompanied by a woman in yellow clothes. At first, he was very vigilant, but once he noticed that other townspeople were carrying fruits in their hands, or bringing livestock, like cow or goat, with them, he was completely relieved.
Indeed, the townspeople did not intend to offer him as a sacrifice to the Ghost Deity, but the smile on his face did not last long when he saw a group of young people from the town chasing four individuals, who were tied up like rice dumplings, to the center of the square.
The four of them were the ones entering the town one step ahead of them and were cultivators forced to act as laborers. Tianle noticed that the four of them seemed to be struggling and shouting in defiance, as if they were trying to break free from the power that was forcing them to play the roles of laborers.
However, due to the restrictions of the small town, the cultivators who used to be aloof were now complete mortals. Let alone struggling, they were pushed and shoved by those young people that they almost fell to the ground.
“How… dare you all treat me like this! Do you even know who I am? You bunch of damned mortals!” The eyes of the young man in front were burning with rage, but Xu Ziyan could clearly see the disgust and fear beneath the anger in his eyes.
Among cultivators, there were always those self-important and arrogant second-generation young people. They had extreme discrimination against ordinary people, and they did not even regard ordinary people as human beings at all. Just like when his master of his previous life was fighting a demon cultivator, despite having the ability to prevent the devastation of a mortal village below, he did not care at all. He cast his spells recklessly, leading to complete destruction of the village with the aftermath of his spell alone.
Xu Ziyan could easily discern that the young man must also be that type of person. In their minds, mortals were synonymous with lowliness and depravity, as if their existence would offend the young master’s eyes.
Unfortunately, he, who once possessed great power, had now become the mortal he once despised, being treated in such a manner by some ordinary townspeople. He was probably thinking that once he escaped from the trouble, he would slaughter everyone there.
Xu Ziyan never had sympathy for such individuals. Besides, the reason why those people had fallen into their current situation was mainly because they killed four actual townspeople, so no matter what the townspeople did to them, their actions were justified retaliation. Even if they had not killed anyone, that matter had nothing to do with Xu Ziyan in the end. Of course, he would not waste his energy offending the townspeople.
Apart from the young man, the other three were equally enraged, constantly trying to break the ropes binding them. However, being used to solving everything with their magical abilities, how could they possibly undo the thick hemp ropes after losing their spiritual powers?
Tianle took out a handful of dried sunflower seeds from nowhere, and kindly shared them with the woman in yellow. While nibbling the seeds, the two discussed the fate of the four.
The woman in yellow looked very pure and lovely, with two small dimples appearing when she smiled, which made her looked very sweet. However, the content of their conversation was chilling and unsettling, probably only someone as crazy as Tianle could have an enthusiastic chat with her.
“Do you think they will bleed later?” Tianle asked, pointing at the four individuals.
The woman in yellow pursed her lips, “Of course they will! If they don’t bleed, how can the Great Ghost Deity return their bodies to the original owners?”
“Ah?” Tianle was puzzled for a moment, “Does it matter?”
“It certainly does.” The woman in yellow nodded, “These people’s bodies are impure and filthy. How can they be compared to the immortal body bestowed on us by the Great Ghost Deity? Only by smashing their bodies into pieces and kneading them into lumps can the Great Ghost Deity reshape new bodies for them, then bring back the original four individuals.”
“Is that so?” Tianle rubbed his chin, “Draining the blood, then kneading the body into lumps… This Great Ghost Deity really has a peculiar taste.”
The woman in yellow shot him an annoyed look, “What nonsense are you spouting? Back then, Nüwa(creator of humans in Chinese mythology) create humans by kneading them too! The Great Ghost Deity used the same method, which explained the might of the Great Ghost Deity. If you don’t understand, don’t make random remarks.”