This was the first time Gu Yan asked Qin Yao for something, and the first time he expressed his wishes to him directly.
Or perhaps……It was better to say that it was just an extravagant hope of his.
Even though this was a very difficult request to fulfil.
There are countless people in this world who had fallen, and turned into demons, but not once has a demon ever reverted back into a human. Demons were not complete objects, they were just a mixture of evil thoughts and impurities, not at all the same as a human. How could a demon turn into a human……
As soon as Gu Yan finished speaking, even he himself felt that what he said was laughable……But he had actually said it out in the spur of the moment.
If you excluded the option of death, perhaps this was the only other choice. But compared to this, dying was many times easier.
Gu Yan closed his mouth abruptly, and his eyes were filled with a faint gloom.
To turn into a human……
When has this thought began to take root within his heart? It had once gone by his mind in a flash, he did not dare to even think about it.
He thought he would never have the chance to say it.
Qin Yao turned back. A violent light had suddenly emerged within his eyes as if someone had hurled a rock into a lake, its surface stirring. But after a moment, he regained his calm.
His face tightened and his jaw was stiff as he stared at Gu Yan with his sharp eyes.
Gu Yan could feel his scalp going numb from being stared at by Qin Yao, and a look of unease flashed past his eyes. He coughed:”It’s fine if it’s not possible, you don’t have to take it too seriously.”
His request was indeed too abrupt, he had only been thinking of himself and did not think about whether it would trouble Qin Yao or not.
He didn’t want to trouble him, and besides, this thought was just one of his fleeting expectations. As he told himself, this was just an extravagant hope, it was not something he intended to bring to life.
To have it fulfilled would be a surprise, but he would not be disappointed if it could not be achieved.
Gu Yan smiled,”isn’t it time to go back?”
Qin Yao slowly nodded.
When they returned to the villa, it was already early in the morning. The sky was so dark tonight that not even the stars or the moon could be seen.
Gu Yan stood in that familiar room and felt slightly nervous. The big bed in front of him reminded him of the absurd affairs the two participated in every night, as well as the feeling of that touch that was carved deeply into his bones.
At first, he just wanted to shift Qin Yao’s attention away, and appease their relationship.
But evading him like that did not have any use, he still had to return here sooner or later.
After a while, Gu Yan suddenly laughed. It really was getting harder and harder for him to let go.
He should be dead anyway, whether he lived another day or not was the same, if this body could please Qin Yao, then so what if he allowed him to do as he pleased…..? There was nothing he could do to return the favour to him anyway.
Him like he was now was destined to fail in returning Qin Yao’s feelings.
Thinking about that, Gu Yan’s face softened.
Moreover, it’s not like he got no enjoyment out of it at all, right? If he could get past what he felt in his heart, it did not actually feel half bad.
“Do you want to rest here?”Gu Yan smiled to Qin Yao. Even so, there was no need to ask at all, Qin Yao had been staying here every night, but Gu Yan still decided to ask. This was the first time he did.
Thinking back on all the things Qin Yao has done for him, Gu Yan could not help but feel warm in his heart. It’s better to just enjoy life while you can, he did not want to trouble this man anymore anyway.
Qin Yao was silent for a moment, but he suddenly spoke:”Do you really want to turn back into a human?”
His eyes were observing him so sharply it almost seemed as if he wanted to look into Gu Yan’s heart.
Gu Yan paused for a moment, but he chuckled at a loss. Seems like Qin Yao did not believe him too much. But that was understandable, he was not very trustworthy to begin with. But this thought was genuine.
Yes.”Gu Yan acknowledged.
Qin Yao’s eyes rippled as if he made a decision, and he said:”Come with me.”
Gu Yan did not understand, but he followed behind him and went out.
There was a lake in the very centre of the manor. Gu Yan had been there several times during his walks, but he did not know why Qin Yao had brought him here in the middle of the night.
He did not ask either, he just watched him.
But later, he was surprised to find that there was actually still an underground palace under the lake! Since it was being concealed by a high-level spell, he had never once realized the existence of it.
The underground palace was extremely cold, and very empty. Within it contained a single ice coffin.
Gu Yan looked at it from afar, but almost absent-mindedly, his heart started to beat very fast as if he realized something……
Qin Yao’s steps progressed with no delay. He went over there slowly, but firmly. Putting his hands on the ice coffin, he pushed the lid gently open.
Gu Yan could barely feel his footsteps, and he could not stop himself from looking over……
Then, he saw a very familiar yet unfamiliar face. He was familiar with it because this was the him from before; unfamiliar, because so many years have passed. It felt like he had already turned into a completely different person, he could almost not remember what he used to look like anymore.
There was nothing that could describe the shock he felt in his heart at this moment.
His body was actually still here!
Gu Yan held the edges of the coffin with his two hands with so much force his knuckles were starting to turn white. With shivering lips, he stared straight in front of him.
But how could this be possible……
Gu Yan seems to have suddenly thought of something, and when he reached towards the clothes of the body, pulling the collar down a little, he could see bruised trails on its neck, and even the marks of patchwork……Gu Yan looked at that scar, and his eyes felt as if they were stinging. As if he had been zapped by electricity, he let go.
He did not look anywhere else, because there was no need, this was his body.
This was not someone else that just looked like him.
This broken body that had been suppressed and turned back upon……Bit by bit, someone had found every piece of it, and put it back together carefully, kept here for hundreds of thousands of years.
Gu Yan bit down on his lips hard.
He was not someone who gets moved easily, but at this moment, the impact of all this made it hard for him to remain calm.
This was him……This was the real him.
Gu Yan slowly turned his head towards Qin Yao, but he could not see any expression on his face. With his eyes half lowered, a faint shadow could be seen casted beneath his eyelashes, blocking his eyes like a layer of fog.
So, has he been waiting for him like this all these years?
Just like this, did he believe he was going to come back?
Gu Yan opened his mouth, and made an abrupt voice,”You……”But after saying a word, he suddenly found that he could not continue.
Even he himself had given up, but even after his downfall, someone was still waiting silently for him.
At every moment, he was waiting, so he could extend a hand out to him.
“Thank you.”Gu Yan closed his eyes, and opened again. A smile was playing by his lips, he should be happy about this.
There really was nothing worth getting happy about more than this.
Right now, he was really very happy.
Qin Yao was still standing there, and he hesitated for a moment, but he finally spoke:”Do you still remember the jade that shattered last time? And that light that entered your body?”
Gu Yan nodded,”I remember.”
“I made that pendant out of an ancient piece of agate, and it has always been carried on your body. With its help, I tried to nurture your soul, and when that fragment sensed your attraction, it took the initiative to return itself to you. So, strictly speaking, your soul right now should be complete.”Qin Yao’s tone was serious.
“This is very important, because only by completing your soul can you return to your body. But it’s still just a possibility because your body has already been corrupted by demonic energy for a thousand years, it has already formed a single entity with it. If you want to return to becoming a human, you can’t have even a hint of demonic energy in you. This process of separation is very painful……Even, even if you could complete that step, your body may still not be able to successfully accommodate your current soul. So……I’m not fully confident.”
Qin Yao finally turned over to look deeply at Gu Yan,”If we succeed, you can become yourself again. But if we fail, your soul will disperse. You can think over it longer.”His voice was very calm, but a hint of a tremble seemed to be hidden beneath.
This was a choice for Gu Yan, but for Qin Yao, it might not be.
“No need.”Gu Yan answered him without any hesitation.
As long as there was hope, he did not want to give up. There was nothing that would be worse than the current situation now either.
Qin Yao was silent for a few seconds,”Actually, there’s nothing bad about you being how you are now……”
Qin Yao laughed when he heard this, and the humour was practically flowing out from the depths of his eyes.
“Ah Yao……”In Gu Yan’s memories, this was how he called Qin Yao. He felt that this way of calling out to him felt very intimate, and it was easier for him to express his current feelings with it. Gu Yan laughed,”If I can turn back into a human, then I’ll be able to accompany you better.”
He could be together with Qin Yao, and look after this world seriously. He would not have that many burdens, so many responsibilities, he would be able to live for himself.
Just like that, he wanted to live a good life, just once.
And this time, someone will be standing by his side.
The surprise and astonishment solidified in Qin Yao’s eyes for a moment, but then, it shattered apart abruptly. A hurricane swept by, sucking up the debris and swept everything away, forming a deep, bottomless vortex. His throat bobbed and his voice was hoarse,”Master……”
Qin Yao could not conceal the changes on his face. Gu Yan looked at him, and could vaguely see that boy from the past.
He missed him very much.
Gu Yan smiled:”When can we start?”
Qin Yao’s chest heaved, but he calmed himself down:”We can start now.”
“Alright.”Gu Yan was eager.
His heart was beating very fast, that feeling called hope seems to have been gone from his heart a long time ago……But at this moment, it felt like he had found a new meaning to life.
As a demon without any hope, he had almost forgotten his ability to have such emotions.
He thought that there was nowhere he could go, but who knew that he would still have the chance to become human again?
Even if he had to pay everything he had as the price, he was still willing.
Gu Yan tried his best to control the corners of his mouth so as not to make his smile seem too obvious. Even though he had some hope, he still should not be feeling happy too soon. He had not forgotten that he was still a ticking time bomb at this moment. The demon lord could seize control of his body at any moment.
For Qin Yao to help him recover his body was not an easy matter, so Gu Yan did not think that the demon lord would let go of such a good opportunity.
“What should I do?”Gu Yan looked at Qin Yao and asked.
Qin Yao paused for a moment, but slowly, he spoke word by word:”You have to face death, fight, and be reborn again.”
Gu Yan revealed a thoughtful look.
Qin Yao put the body up from the ice coffin carefully into a sitting position and turned his palms over towards the sky. He pressed lightly on the crystal floor and the ice coffin slowly sunk into the ground. Then, he turned to speak:”I know you can leave the body of this human you possessed at any time, but this is not enough. If you possess the body with your demonic soul, it would just turn your body into a demon. So, if you want to come back completely, you must endure the separation of your soul. My sword was created to restrain negative demonic energy, and it can stamp out all the demonic power present inside your soul. Therefore, I have to kill you before you can have the chance to destroy all the demonic energy within your soul.”
Qin Yao slowly pulled out his sword from the air. It was the very silvery-white sword he had wielded the first time they met in the human world, and just the aura exuded by the blade alone was enough to make Gu Yan feel very uncomfortable.
He was very much aware on how much of a threat this sword was to a demon.
“During this process, I will need to watch over your soul carefully, and send it back to your body in a timely manner. Otherwise, you will die. But even though I’m watching over you, if you can’t……get rid of it in time, your soul will still disappear. You will have to go through this alone, nobody will be able to help you.”Qin Yao looked deeply at Gu Yan, and held his sword with much force. A look of struggle flashed past his eyes.
“I understand.”Gu Yan said.
He had actually thought about this when Qin Yao mentioned that he had to die and be reborn. His soul had already been demonized for a very long time, so if he was going to get rid of the demonic energy, he could only use such extreme methods. That was why he could understand why Qin Yao hesitated, because the rate of success was too low.
But Gu Yan felt at ease instead. He was not afraid of failure, but in this situation, it would be useless even if the demon lord tried to control him.
He was not even afraid at all whether this process would hurt Qin Yao, but as for whether he could get out of this or not, that was his own business.
Qin Yao pursed his lips tightly, and held his sword firmly.
“Are you ready?”He asked.
Gu Yan smiled, but just as he was about to open his mouth, his body suddenly shook. In an instant, he lost control of his body. It felt as if his soul had been crammed into a small corner, and he could hear himself say:”In case……I failed……you……”
Gu Yan looked on coldly as he ‘himself’ put on an act, as he had expected, the demon lord really could not sit still.
He lowered his eyes down to the tip of Qin Yao’s sword, and his mood felt complicated.
“If I die, forget me.”Gu Yan said. Slowly, he walked forward, and reached out to touch Qin Yao’s face.
He looked at the wavering of Qin Yao’s eyes, and scoffed in his heart. These were not his words; these were not his actions.
He knew what the demon lord was trying to do, he wanted to drive him to hurt Qin Yao, to get him away from here, and get him to do his bidding.
But just the same, Gu Yan was also reluctant to sit still.
He had been controlled for so long, and tried so many times to resist, but each time, he was easily suppressed. Still, this did not mean he could only accept his fate. He was not willing to continue on with this, he was always trying to regain control of his body, and finally, he found a way. If he can find a hole in the demon lord’s control, he could break through in that instant, and regain control of his body. But he only had one opportunity! After trying once, he would be suppressed without mercy.
Gu Yan felt that this was the only chance he would have right now.
The power he had been saving up for a long time finally erupted! A creak could be heard from the bones of Gu Yan’s right hand, and he suddenly held the sword with one hand, thrusting it directly through his chest! His whole body fell towards Qin Yao! He gave up all of his resistance and his body’s instinct to protect itself, without encountering any obstacles the spiritual energy dove straight into him! His whole body was oozing blood in an instant and it was like his body was collapsing in on itself from inside.
At that time, even under his full resistance, that sword had still created an irreversible scar on him. This time, he opened up his soul and allowed the spiritual energy to wash over him. It felt like a thousand knives was carving into his body, and it was being set on fire.
The overwhelming golden thread of spiritual energy was wandering all throughout his body as if it was going to crush his soul!
Gu Yan opened his mouth and made a strange sorrowful moan.
The pure, ink-black consciousness contained within his demonic energy was emanating with a strong sense of anger, but under this situation, it could not protect itself. There was no way it could continue controlling Gu Yan.
Gu Yan could only taste the sweetness of victory in his mouth, he had made the right bet.
He held Qin Yao tightly, allowing him to sink his sword deep inside his body, and keep it in. He raised his head and smiled to him,”Don’t worry……I’m fine.”
He could barely stand, and his body was practically held up by the sword skewering him by the chest. Qin Yao held his sword with so much force that his hand had turned white, and was trembling. Gu Yan held his hand softly, and shook his head, he could not muster any words anymore.
The pain and burning of his soul being split apart caused Gu Yan’s expression to distort, and the pain was causing him to lose his sanity.
But he could not lose consciousness, he could not give up. To give up would mean his death.
With the soul of a powerful high-tier demon, the demonic energy contained within his soul was so rich that it was unwilling to disappear so easily. It was making its large struggle for survival.
Gu Yan tried his best to maintain his last shred of consciousness, but burst after burst of pain was almost drowning him. Just when he thought he could no longer persist, his mind suddenly became clear, he had regained his sanity.
The faint power within his heart was almost undetectable, this was that unsoiled portion of his soul that had entered his body at that time. When the majority of the demonic energy had already been destroyed, it finally revealed itself.
Gu Yan focused his mind and penetrated his soul into that intense golden thread of spiritual energy. The demonic energy was being forced out, and started to sizzle.
His mind made a move, and with all his force, he rushed out!
A trail of white light shot out from his forehead! And it rushed directly towards his original body on the ground!