Xiao Fuxuan’s coffin?
Wu Xingxue softly repeated again.
The subordinates had caught up, but they wouldn’t stand too close to the coffin.
Ning Huaishan stretched his neck out way long, saying dumbfoundedly: “That’s so weird, why would the Tianxiu Immortal’s coffin be here?”
Good kid, he sure knows how to talk.
Wu Xingxue was originally still pondering who Xiao Fuxuan was exactly, deathly afraid that he would get it wrong and blow his cover.
Much thanks to Ning Huaishan’s quick mouth for helping him avoid this calamity.
But it was truly very strange.
Wu Xingxue didn’t understand the rules here, but he’d read storybooks.
The immortals in storybooks always regarded demons as filth; like water and fire, the two parties were irreconcilable.
Who would place their own coffin in a prison specifically for detaining demons, were they really that afraid of dying contently?
Or… was there another explanation?
Wu Xingxue pondered this, reaching out to brush the side of the white jade coffin filled with coffin nails.
Ever since he was little, he had a bad habit—most of the nobles of Que Capital all loved unique and abnormal objects, like shark pearls, prajñā, and earthly lanterns, their flowery names each more ostentatious than the next.
But he was different.
He was very traditional; he only liked white jade.
He couldn’t help but to touch it whenever he saw it, testing its quality.
“Personally, I think it’s definitely not a real coffin.
It’s probably just a sartorial tomb.”
“Is a sartorial tomb not weird? How is that different from actually lying there?”
“True! Even the ugly stone statues in shabby mountain temples can get a smidge of the actual immortal’s spirit, not to mention the clothes they really wore? That’s not called a smidge of spirit, that’s basically the actual person. Chengzhu, you—”
After Ning Huaishan finished relaying his suspicions, he turned around and saw his chengzhu touching that coffin.
Ning Huaishan: “…”
Ning Huaishan: “???”
This scene was really too unusual, and the subordinates were instantly bewildered.
It was truly difficult to determine this demon’s emotions, and some of his actions were truly beyond the realm of expectation.
When he laughed, that didn’t always mean he was happy, and when he spoke warmly and softly, that didn’t always mean he was praising you.
He was really hard to serve and really hard to see through.
But that was Xiao Fuxuan, the Xiao Fuxuan who sealed him inside the Canglang Northern Territory.
He… why was he touching that?
Ning Huaishan licked his lips: “Chengzhu, what are you doing?”
They all looked at each other, and then towards Wu Xingxue.
The subordinate closest to Ning Huaishan suddenly touched his neck shiftily.
He reached out a finger and wrote on Ning Huaishan’s palm:
[Don’t you think…]
He hadn’t finished writing when he heard a “ping—” sound.
Where Wu Xingxue’s fingers had brushed, black coffin nails abruptly popped out, sticking up almost an inch.
Scraps of jade still clung onto the nails, and a layer of soft golden light swirled around them, like they had been unscrupulously pulled out by a violent force.
The hand that was writing froze, fingers curling back.
Immediately, there was a second sound.
Another black coffin needle popped out.
And then a third.
With the loss of each coffin nail, the entire white jade coffin would shake.
And not just the coffin, but the sword cemetery, the huge tree, and even the entire wilderness would shake with it.
Ning Huaishan and the others acted as if facing a great enemy; in a second, they had retreated many meters away, calling in alarm: “Chengzhu, we thought… you actually wanted to open the coffin?!”
No, I didn’t.
Wu Xingxue thought ‘if I knew how to work a bit of spiritual power, I’d be running faster than all of you guys.’
But unfortunately, he didn’t know.
Not only could he not run, but his two feet couldn’t even move.
He didn’t know what kind of spirit force that coffin had, but as it shook, it seemed that numerous invisible hands had reached out from the ground and grasped him solidly in place.
So as the subordinates had all retreated, he still stood next to the coffin, watching with his own eyes as all the coffin nails fell.
As the last “ping” sounded, the huge white jade coffin lid emitted a sound like “clay and rock scraping together,” falling to the ground with a boom.
Wu Xingxue closed his eyes.
He didn’t smell any odor of decay; only the scent of cold snow and floating dust fell in his nose.
It seemed a bit like deep winter in Que Capital.
“It really opened…” Ning Huaishan and the others mumbled, “Chengzhu, what’s inside?”
Wu Xingxue opened his eyes.
That white jade coffin was much taller than a regular coffin; he couldn’t see inside from where he was standing.
At some point, the pressure at his feet had vanished, and he hesitantly walked a step closer: “Inside is…”
Wu Xingxue’s lips moved a bit, and then unconsciously pressed together.
It was too unexpected.
The person lying inside the white jade coffin was actually the Tianxiu Immortal.
He looked just like the vague image inside the golden water lily from before, but still not completely alike.
A thick layer of frigid air was enshrouded inside the coffin, within which lay Xiao Fuxuan, frost dusting his closed eyes and the black mourning pins in his ear bone.
He looked colder than a jade bi, without a hint of life.
Wu Xingxue rested against the coffin, his gaze cast downward for a long period.
“Chengzhu, is it a sartorial tomb? Or are there some personal objects suppressed inside?” Ning Huaishan’s voice sounded closer and closer; after a while with no answer, the subordinates dragged their feet over around him.
Just as they reached their heads over, they saw Xiao Fuxuan’s face.
Ning Huaishan scrambled back to where he was.
The others also wanted to run, but they heard one of them say: “Ay? That’s not right, wait!”
Ning Huaishan: “Wait? Do I look crazy?”
“Chengzhu is still here, why are you panicking? Look closely, the coffin doesn’t contain the actual person.”
Hn? Not the actual person?
Wu Xingxue looked up, but he was afraid of appearing too surprised, so he dropped his gaze once again.
Thankfully, Ning Huaishan opened his mouth again: “Not the actual person?”
“Yeah, have you forgotten? Those immortals really like doing things like splitting themselves into um, um, corporeal bodies, leaving one here and another there.”
Oh, the storybooks also talked about this, deities roaming around the human realm.
Wu Xingxue thought.
“How can you tell?” Ning Huaishan replied apprehensively.
“I’m old, after all, I’ve seen stuff like this.
Look at his wrist.”
Wu Xingxue looked over.
He saw that on the side of the person in the coffin’s left hand, there was a small black mark, just like the water lily from before.
Putting it like this, this really isn’t the actual person, but just an empty shell of a body?
The subordinates were still talking, but Wu Xingxue wasn’t listening very carefully.
Because he was thinking of a problem—
Since the one in the jade coffin wasn’t the actual person, and didn’t have any sign of suddenly coming to life.
Then… who opened the coffin just now?
He immediately looked down at his own hands.
He almost suspected that this so-called demon’s original owner hadn’t completely disappeared.
Maybe he had even left some remaining strength in his hands.
But that also wasn’t right.
When he touched the coffin, there wasn’t any force in his fingers; he really just touched it.
If that original owner was still here, then according to that person’s abilities, wouldn’t it be extremely easy for him to snatch this body back? Why would he still be allowing him to usurp this body?
As Wu Xingxue pondered this vacantly, he suddenly noticed an object underneath “Xiao Fuxuan”’s hand, covered by the Tianxiu Immortal’s slightly curved fingers, with only a corner peeking out.
Is that a jade statue?
Wu Xingxue hesitated for a moment, mumbling in his head: “Although you are only a shell, I should still say in advance, excuse me.”
He pried open the ice-cold fingers of the person inside the coffin, taking out the thing under his palm.
It was a figurine sculpted from white jade; the carving was extremely life-like, but the figurine didn’t have a face, so he couldn’t tell who it was.
The person did hold a long sword in their hand, though, and a square platform carved with flowers rested beneath their feet.
In Que Capital, stone and jade statues with platforms only consisted of one type—divine icons used for worship.
He didn’t know if it was the same here.
But if this was a divine figure, and they were holding a sword, then this should be the Tianxiu Immortal himself.
As Wu Xingxue speculated, his thumb unconsciously brushed past the flowers on the square platform.
He didn’t know where he had touched, but his heart suddenly jumped—he heard a voice.
[Have you gone to Chunfan City west of Dream Capital? There’s an exceptional person there named Yi Wusheng.]
Wu Xingxue: “…”
He almost tossed the divine statue.
But thankfully, he had witnessed countless situations in Que Capital, so he was very adept at not changing his expression.
Who is speaking? Why can I hear this voice?
Wu Xingxue gazed downwards, but his heart was secretly thundering.
Is it because I’m holding this divine statue?
Wu Xingxue was silent for a moment, and he again used his thumb to touch the flower carving from before.
This time, there was absolutely no noise.
What happened? Don’t tell me that being possessed has led to hysteria?
Wu Xingxue turned the divine statue around again, mumbling in his head.
[Do you want to go back? Go find him.]
At some point, that voice sounded again with absolutely no warning.
Wu Xingxue’s fingers tightened.
This information still had no context, but that phrase “do you want to go back” struck his heart’s desires dead center.
Do I want to go back?
Of course I do.
He really wanted to go back to Que Capital.
There, there weren’t any evil creatures, Canglang Northern Territory didn’t exist, and there were no clanging heavenly locks.
There, the world wasn’t divided into the Immortal Capital and demon lairs; there was only the human realm with its lively commotion, horses and carriages, free to come and go as you please.
He repeated these two words subconsciously, then snorted at himself in his head.
You really are insane, he thought to himself.
You don’t know who this voice is, and you also don’t know who that sentence is for.
It’s extremely likely that it’s only some remnant spiritual consciousness on this divine statue, yet just because it matches your own wishes, you actually took note.
He shook his head, and was just about to replace this divine statue that drove people insane, but that hazy voice sounded again.
[This type of shell is the easiest to use.
Grasp the wrist, send in spiritual energy, and a puppet will form.
If it’s some powerful person, then you’ve profited.
When you take it out, it will be obedient and imposing… are you listening?]
Wu Xingxue directly dropped the divine statue back into the coffin.
Out of respect for this Tianxiu Immortal, he actually avoided his person.
The divine statue fell onto the jade bottom with a clunk, startling Ning Huaishan and the others into a shudder.
“Chengzhu, the divine statue can’t be… Chengzhu? Ning Huaishan had only said half a sentence when he saw his chengzhu prop himself against the side of the coffin, bend down, and reach out a hand to the person inside the coffin.
He saw Wu Xingxue grasp Xiao Fuxuan’s wrist, his slender thumb rubbing that black mark.
Isn’t this, isn’t this how you make a puppet?!
The subordinates were all shocked still: “Chengzhu! You, are you trying to turn the Tianxiu Immortal’s empty human body into your own puppet?!”
Wu Xingxue thought, Of course not, would I dare? And besides, do I have the ability?
Actually, he didn’t even know why he went to touch him.
To prove that the voice in his head wasn’t his imagination? But he actually couldn’t prove anything; after all, the voice said that he needed to send spiritual energy.
He didn’t have anything to send, he could only simply press, how could this lead to a result—
This thought hadn’t yet finished when he suddenly felt a jump beneath his thumb.
It was very light, like a heartbeat.
Wu Xingxue: “?”
Abruptly alarmed, he lifted his head to look, only to see the person in the coffin who had perished who knows how many years ago suddenly open his eyes.
Ning Huaishan and the others’ possessed yells were deafening: “It worked! It really worked! Chengzhu, look, the puppet formed, he opened his eyes!”
Even their chengzhu’s heart was cold.
He did open his eyes.
What’s scary is that I didn’t even do anything, but he really opened his eyes.
Wu Xingxue didn’t even have time to explain himself before he felt the scene in front of his eyes blur.
A huge gust of force fell on his body, and the world then started to spin.
He subconsciously closed his eyes.
No one saw clearly how the new “puppet” in the coffin got up, they only felt a great gale of wind from the wilderness, carrying the vast billowing snow, swirl into a vortex around the coffin.
All of the long swords in the sword cemetery started to shake, and the sound of clanging metal mixed in with the wind, almost indiscernible from the chains on Wu Xingxue’s body.
When the blizzard lifted, the “puppet” had pressed Wu Xingxue to the ground, his left hand catching a long sword that had flew in from the sword cemetery.
The sword spun, coldly aiming downwards.
Wu Xingxue heard the whish of the sword and abruptly closed his eyes.
But the tip of the sword wedged into the ground only a hair’s breadth away; the cold sword qi swept over with the wind and stopped agonizingly close to next to his neck.
Not a hair was harmed, but the sword was still acutely sharp beside him.
He saw Xiao Fuxuan blink away the frost on his lashes and bend down to look at him.
After a long moment, he called his name: “Wu Xingxue.”
 衣冠冢, where only the deceased’s clothing and other items are buried
 Some of the characters for this last bit are missing in the raw, so I’m guessing this is what Mu Su Li meant.
 法术, literally magic, but it refers more to what cultivators do with their qi, including arrays, talismans, etc.
 璧, a bi is a disk with a hole in the middle.
In ancient Chinese art, jade bis often symbolize copulation.
 Yi here actually means doctor in Chinese; Yi Wusheng works in medicine.
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