Wang Shu blinked several times in succession, rubbed his eyes and looked up again. Nothing of his surroundings changed back to his much familiar courtyard in Wudang Sect. He dazedly took in the beautiful cloister garden he's seated in; a soft-looking blanket of grass that's been surprisingly cut very short, meticulously maintained flowering trees with various exotic colors and a gorgeous central pond with shimmering waters, lightly reflecting the warm rays of the afternoon sun, dotted with the occasional fall out of flower petals. It looked breathtaking.
Wang Shu was so transfixed that for a while he forgot about his predicament. After his momentary daze, he finally regained his senses. Where was he?
The last thing he remembers is preparing to face the heavenly tribulations and breakthrough to the nascent soul stage at the young age of thirty. The commotion alerted the sect disciples and elders, for they came running to witness his miraculous progression. He was the Wudang sect's most outstanding disciple. He even outranked some of the elders who are hundreds of years older than he. Sitting with his legs crossed, back straight and eyes closed he remained focused and unperturbed in the face of the jealousy infused gazes of his spectators. He was an existence envied by the heavens.
Everything was going well until the first streak of lightning hit. It hurt so much he almost fainted. His body felt numb and unresponsive to his futile attempts to move. It was as if he was frozen over. Then it dawned on him that this was only the first streak of lightning. How was he to deal with the eighty ones to come?
Then they hit one after another and the immense pain that racked his body left him wishing for death. He could literally feel his muscles tearing, his bones shattering and his skin lacerating. Wang Shu was never one to fear pain, he'd take on the challenge anytime if it meant he gets to advance, but this felt different. It was different. No one ever told him that tribulations were this bad. If he knew he would've stopped cultivating altogether. To hell with the martial way, he'd rather be a mortal.
He tried to will his spiritual power to heal the damage caused by the lightning, but the more he tried the weaker he got. That was when he noticed he was being drained of his cultivation. As if someone was actively sucking on his spiritual power. What is going on?
This was akin to torture. What was he to do to make his suffering cease? He clearly has the artifact that his master gave him to lessen the tribulations impact, why isn't it working? Wait, his master… maybe his master could help!
His bloody eyes shot open, struggling to pinpoint his master's astute figure amidst the onlookers' indistinct shadows. Then he spotted him, that man's presence was too strong to miss. He carried himself with such poise that one could only lower their head in reverence and utter submission.
Wang Shu was clearly in no state to speak. He could only relay as much desperation as he was feeling in a heartbreakingly pleading gaze to the only person he could depend on. Only, said person remained unmoved, looking on expressionlessly with such a confusing indifference. Why wasn't he anxious? Why wasn't he helping? He clearly cared deeply for this special disciple of his, so why…
Wang Shu knew that even if he was able to speak he wouldn't dare utter a simple 'help me' in the face of his master's blank expression.
Everything was so shocking and sudden that before he could conjure a tale of an unbearable betrayal or a perfect conspiracy his world has gone black. It was such a sweet relief and a surprisingly reassuring weightlessness that he welcomed with open arms. Death wasn't so bad after all.
But now he's here. Where is 'here', Wang Shu wasn't really sure, but it was so beautiful and peaceful that he couldn't bring himself to panic.
Wang Shu jerked his head to the side at the sudden call. It was only now that he noticed he wasn't all alone in the garden. A couple of feet away from him stood a relatively tall boyish-looking young man with short cut flaxen hair, dark brown eyes, and healthy tanned skin. He was wearing a weird black and white attire that Wang Shu has never seen before.
"Young master Oliver, your tea will get cold if you don't drink it soon"
Wang Shu looked back at the lavish tea set and the mouthwatering assortment of pastry in front of him in a daze. Well, he did feel quite hungry which was a novel experience for Wang Shu. He used to get by without needing food or water and only relying on spiritual energy to sustain himself. Although other cultivators would indulge in such worldly pleasures, his only focus was the way of the dao so he devotionally avoided any distractions, especially ones that could bring about impurities to his body or taint his soul. Now though… he shamefully couldn't withstand the temptation.
Wang Shu looked again at the man with subtle pleading and after getting an encouraging nod he lifted his cup of tea and tentatively had a taste. Citrusy with a honeyed after taste; it was especially delicious. He then proceeded to the pastries and couldn't bring himself to stop. Although he was curious about this strange-looking man and gorgeous garden, he can't think clearly on an empty belly. Bodily needs are so troublesome!
Butler Walter watched his young master munching at his food happily and heaved a sigh. His charge hadn't uttered a single word all afternoon, and he was getting apprehensive. He was used to Oliver's raging temper and constant scowling expression that got him suspecting his quiet mood being only the calm before the storm. He could only light a candle for himself as the first one to suffer this unruly kid's anger later on this evening. The young butler was sure it won't be as peaceful when the young master learns of his father's decision.
Hey, thanks for checking my novel out! I appreciate comments and pointers, come back tomorrow for a new update ^_^
More Privileged Chapters
Download the app and become a privileged reader today! Come take a sneak peek at our author's stockpiled chapters!Download
This's an experimental test for reading assistance in case.
We highly recommend you to enjoy the beauty of the original words.