The Tales of Three Realms [BL] Chapter 3: The Jade Pearl of The Eastern Sea (1)


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That night, Yuan Ji finally told him a story. A small piece of the recent incident.

The streets were bustling with people. It was unusually crowded that day, thousands after thousands of Spiritual Beings flowed into the Celestial Palace. All of them chattered as they waited for their turn to get inside. The crowd majorly consisted of Fairies, Goddesses, Gods, Mystical Creatures, Immortals, and more. Their voices buzzed with excitement and restlessness.

When they heard a shout, the crowd quickly moved to the side to make way for another incoming trouble.

True to their act, a light colored robe fluttered in the wind, followed with a gleeful laughter and a desperate-sounded yelling.

The youth being chased bent his knees slightly and leaped lightly up to the dark blue roof. The one chasing him didn't cease his yelling, instead intensified it with curses.

Nearly half of the crowd raised their head to see what commotion that happened just now and who did it, while the other half didn't bother to take a look at the youth grinning madly above them. They knew without being told that the youth was none other than their local troublemaker, the Junior Head Official water deity. Instead, they focused their gazes to the poor deity who became his new victim.

Under the sharp eyes of various people and beasts, the other deity became fidgety. Since his rank was too low for proper cultivation, leaping up without falling down miserably would be much doubted.

The water deity seemed to pity him. He stood on the edge of the roof, not having the slightest intention to run away, as if he patiently waited for the other to come up and chase him again. But, then again, everything he did could be said as a mocking.

Feeling desperate yet angry, the dark grey robed deity turned to find a stairway to the roof. The tower itself was about thirty metres of height, with the stairs spiralling up to the roof. Rushing upstairs would only make a person dizzy and throw up.

Apparently, taking the stairs was much easier than leaping up for a Scribe Deity. Since the Temple of Knowledge—The Great Den of Nerds, as most deities subbed—had over fifty of stairs and the scribes there had to run to gather scrolls and the sorts, it had been a must for the deities working there to have a quick feet, agile and thorough. In less than five minutes, hundreds of steps were rounded. If any normal being actually tried to run up those stairs in the span of time, no guarantee that the person wouldn't sprain their ankles or trip over a step.

The scribe fixed his appearance, straightened his clothing as he glared unimpressed at the water deity. He looked as though he wanted to grab a sword from random passerby and hacked the deity before him into pieces.

"Wu Yue Shui..." He gritted his teeth, balling his fists in a threatening manner.

Yuan Ji raised an eyebrow. Referring him by his courtesy name, which he almost never used was a rare thing.

Most people call him Yuan Ji, or Ji. Even in formal meeting, that name was more than often used than his courtesy name. If not Yuan Ji, then it's Dong Shi Shui Shen. Wu Yue Shui was too much of a joke to be used—even worse than the three names that stuck with the water deity since long ago; Yuan Ji, Dong Shi Shui Shen, and Zhen Ding Lang Jian.

But whether people want to admit it or not, his jokes and incapability to act properly was already his mask. One look at him, you would only have the feeling of belittling the deity and ignored the full image, not seeing any hope in him.

He pulled himself out from the trance, flipping the scroll in his hand. With a nonchalant, yet exaggerated tone, he derided the other male. "Why, Wu Yue Shui was but an old name. Rarely used, forgotten by most. Referring this deity with that name, does that mean Your Excellency is familiar with me?"

Right, if this scribe hadn't been employed thousand years ago, how would he know that name? Wu Yue Shui had disappeared from most of scrolls and documents, leaving no trace of the name.

Yet, a thousand years was more than enough to ascend into at least seven ranks, for a literature division. Unless it was Yuan Ji, who took nearly six hundred and fifty years to ascend into Junior Head Official and stuck at said rank for three hundred years now, it seemed impossible.

The scribe lunged forward, attempted to snatch back the scroll. Yuan Ji sidestepped, narrowly missed the attack. He had seen through the moves minutes ago, but not the other's real identity.

"Give it back!" The scribe demanded, voice laced with despair. His hand hastily grabbed his name plate that came off from his robes and stored it into his inner pocket, near the chest. The plate flashed for a short moment, before vanished into the other's robes. A quick glance at the jade plate, on the surface two characters were engraved on it.

Mo Quan.

Junior Inner Circle Literature Deity.

A Junior like him, carrying important scrolls? Certainly Xi Lan wasn't the type to randomly trusted his subordinates with valuable information.

Yuan Ji wouldn't hand the scroll without an answer, he iterated his question. "Tell me first, do you know me personally?" His tone was stubborn, not giving up the slightest bit, coldness lightly enveloped each words.

The way Yuan Ji uttered it, he sounded as though he would pounce on the scribe and rip him into pieces if he still wouldn't answer. The scribe couldn't help but to shudder involuntarily.

"Let me rephrase my words, since it seemed as if you don't understand any of them." Yuan Ji let out a laugh, neither warm nor cold, nor having the slightest hint of friendliness or hostility. Instead, it sounded more to strangers conversing in a passing minute. "Have we ever met before?"

Tension grew as time passed. Yuan Ji before Mo Quan was no longer a playful bird fleeting in the wind, but a hungry tiger circling a prey that had fallen into his trap. Layers of frost coated the two, the same coldness sealed the scribe's mouth shut.

Yuan Ji was all smiles, but one could tell that his patience was reaching its limit. Even if Zhen Ding Lang Jian was left at the Reflected Clarity, there's no guarantee that Mo Quan could survive this one question.

"No. No..." The scribe managed, taking a few steps backwards, trying to distance himself.

"But, if we have never met before, how would you know the name Wu Yue Shui?" A step forward with each word, slowly but steadily cornering the grey robed deity.

Perhaps Mo Quan was desperate, or perhaps he didn't want the other to know. The former took the initiative to launch other strings of attacks. The latter didn't block the attacks nor he returned the act. Yuan Ji only sidestepped a few times as he avoided the kicks and punches.

The scribe gained an upper hand in this one-sided battle, slowly turning the table around. However it didn't last for a long time.

After about five minutes, he grew tired, movements sloppy and reckless. Not long after, an intruder came into their fight.

A sword was held in front of the scribe's neck, the smooth surface of the scabbard pressed onto his throat.

It all happened in a blink of an eye, swiftly and soundlessly done.

The grey-robed young man was of course startled. He turned his head to the side, expression full of questions.

"Don't worry. Jianshu is still in the scabbard."

Hearing that, Yuan Ji bursted into laughter. He bent over, holding his stomach while his shoulders trembled in silent laughter.

The scribe deity's face was one of incredulity. He stared at the sword owner, as though the person mistook him for the true culprit—which was true.

On addition to that, the swordsman's straight face didn't help any of that. Seeing the calm, composed look on the handsome, finely sculpted face only added the laughter. As usual, the Third Young Master was stiff and expressionless.

Mo Quan clenched his fist, gazing up to the sky in a scandalized manner. Everything was tolerable until Yuan Ji called the swordsman intimately.

"Hu Nan! What a great timing!"

The first sentence added vinegar to teeth, smoke to eye. The scribe stared at the water deity speechless, mouth agape in disbelief.

The person before them was no other than Nan Bai Qi Shen! The Great Martial Deity of the South! The Third Young Master of Feng Ye Zhan Ting (Maple Leaf Warring Hall)! The General of Heavens! And Wu Yue Shui acted all intimate and familiar, referring him by his birth name! What a great disgrace!

"You...You—" Mo Quan's body was shaking. One could imagine foam emerged from his mouth.

Yuan Ji smirked, a mischievous one on his lips. However his eyes were sharp and taunting. Those little details went past the martial deity present at the time.

"Yuan Ji." Hu Nan reprimanded, pitying the scribe. "Return what belonged to this deity."

Hearing the last line, Yuan Ji only raised an eyebrow. He shouldn't refuse, for the sake of being not suspicious, though if he really wanted an answer he could just say he didn't wish to give the scroll back. Yuan Ji quickly went against the thought, his hand extended to the scribe's direction.

"This Shui Shen of Eastern Palace apologize deeply for this humble me's childish deed. Pray Literature Deity forgive my attitude before. Should no act be considered as wrongful." He cupped his hand and bowed lightly, keeping a smile plastered on his face.

Now that the affairs had been solved, Mo Quan took no time rounding all the stairsteps down. Yuan Ji stayed behind with Hu Nan, lightly waved to the leaving deity.

"Which deity did you annoy again?" The answer was obvious, yet the latter still asked.

"The Junior Inner Circle Literature Deity of Xi Lan's Temple. Ranked seventh in seniority."

Well, rather than a temple, Xi Lan's place of authority was an enormous library—The Temple of Knowledge, The Archive of Three Realms.

"How many deities this decade?" Hu Nan sat on the edge of the roof, and Yuan Ji mirrored his act.

"Fifty three recruited, thirty seven lost." Yuan Ji answered without difficulties, remembering all the names and ranks written in the scroll. "Want me to name it one by one?"

Hu Nan shook his head, "No need. Don't bother with it."

Yuan Ji only grinned, he raised his head to gaze up to the sky. "How's work at the Southern Gate?"

Perhaps it was Yuan Ji, but from the corner of his eyes he saw the general's lips curved upwards almost unnoticeably. "We caught four demons, only three injured. It's not a great deal."

"Still, congratulations on being a general in less than two hundred years. I'm truly impressed."

Hu Nan turned his head to Yuan Ji, saying, "You too, try to lessen your pranks. If you tried a little harder, you might been an Inner Circle Official or a Head Official now."

The water deity half-sighed half-pouted, "Too bad, I'm stuck in this rank forever."

Compared to people, Yuan Ji was a prodigy on the same level as Hu Nan and others. But he didn't intend to ascend into higher ranks. To think that such an unparalleled talent ended up in vain surely broke people's heart.

Yuan Ji was the disappointment of the Nine Heavens.

A deity lacking motivation and ambition, not pursuing the higher position, what a joke. Yet he was highly favored by the Emperor.

The troublemaker pulled out a pearl woven into his robes. The little fight earlier caused the ornament almost fell off.

On the fair snow-colored palm, the blue pearl appeared to be ethereal-looking.

If someone took a closer look, they'll realize that the pearl was a little different from normal ones. One could pinpoint the similarities, but often the small hints were ignored.

The pearl had a resemblance of a jade carving's.

Yuan Ji held the pearl up and gazed at it, his expression soft and unfathomable.

Upon spotting the pearl, Hu Nan hesitantly started, "You still kept it?"

Yuan Ji didn't turn his head, replied indifferently, "It wasn't as if I could just throw it away, no?"
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