Dongmei strolled along the edge of the road. She took note of what flowers and herbs that grew at the side. She soon stood in front of the entrance gate of the Divine Feathers Sect. In front of her stood a Dao of Dragon realm guard. He looked at her party of one surprise. When he resettled his expression he said, “Halt. The Divine Feathers Sect is closed to all non-sect people.” Dongmei smiled at the guard. A part of her pitied him. He would never be the useful pawn. “Please inform Sect Master Nie Li that I am here to chat.” The guard’s face lit up with even more confusion. Since the sect had been closed very few outsiders knew of Sect Master Nie Li’s existence. Whispers amongst the sect said that he had allies in all other major Human sects. They were his brothers and sisters from the Tiny World. She maybe be one of his sisters. She certainly seemed beautiful enough to fit the rumors. “Are you from the Tiny World?” He asked her skeptically. Dongmei’s pity grew. Why allow a naive boy guard the Sect entrance. “I am.” She watched him straighten up as if to regain his seniority. She laughed. The poor guard could try. “Wait here.” She watched him disappear into the Sect. She simply sat down and cultivated until his return. When he reappeared, she followed him silently to greet Nie Li. She was lead to a room of thirteen people. Nie Li sat in a large throne. Dongmei knelt down. “Zhao Dongmei of the Heavenly Plum League greets Sect Master Nie Li.” Nie Li waved his hand and the guard quickly disappeared. He stood up and walked towards her. A few of the people around him surprised. As he walked Li Xingyun began to speak. “Nie Li, the Heavenly Plum League is the Second ranked League of the Hidden Cloud Sect. Zhao Dongmei is the leader. She is also from the Tiny World.” Nie Li stopped a few feat away from her. Second strongest league from the Hidden Cloud Sect. Duan Jian had never mentioned her. Ever. Lu Piao narrowed his eyes. He seemed agitated. ” Nie Li and I were born in the Tiny World! We have never known a Zhao Dongmei!” She stood up from her kneeling position and smiled at the collection behind Nie Li. “Unless you were a God it would be impossible to have known. I was born in Glory city, as you and Sect Master Nie Li. However, at the age of five, my parents were murdered by the Sacred Family. I was raised by the Demon Lord outside of its walls.” Everyone in the room, except Nie Li and Lu Piao looked at each other in confusion. There expression turning to worry as Nie Li and Lu Piao’s expression grew dark. Li Xingyun, Long Yuyin, Gu Bei and the others grew even more worried. Nie Li did not react in an emotional manner. “Why have come to our Divine Feathers Sect!” Dongmei looked past Nie Li at the collection of people behind him. She turned back to look at him frowning. “With respect to Sect Master Nie Li, I believe it is better if we speak in private.” Lu Piao walked towards them in extreme rage. “We are Nie Li’s sworn brothers and sisters!” Nie Li’s aura calmed down. Throwing everyone else in the room to deeper realms of confusion. “You can deliver your message now.” Dongmei sighed, but she reached into her top to pull out the two pages of the Temporal Demon Spirit book she possessed. Nie Li first reacted with shock. Secondly with a large murderous intent that scared everyone else in the room. They had no idea how two torn pages could have him reacting in such an extreme manor. “Everyone out. Alert the Sect we may have to move sooner then expected.” They all turned to Lu Piao. He wore an uncharacteristically deep expression. In the end his faith in Nie Li won out. He lead the others out of the room. Long Yuyin remaining in place. She had an idea of what this was about. “Nie Li. Allow one of us to stay and guard you. She’s a Martial Ancestor.” He turned to look at Long Yuyin. She backed up a few steps in fear. He simply nodded his head and commanded she remain silent. Dongmei smiled at her once again. “Relax, Xiao Long, I have no desire for Sect Master Nie Li as a man. Only come to talk to him about a common enemy.” When her gaze returned to him Nie Li had resettled into a calm demeanor. He had realized this was about the Sage Emperor. An existence she should not be aware of. “What enemy do you speak of?” Dongmei walked over to Nie Li. Untill she was only a few steps apart. She looked at Nie Li grim. “The Sage Emperor. I have seen us reach the point we must interact.” He looked at her shocked. How far could she have predicted. “Explain.” Dongmei’s grim look changed to a smile. “Many years in the future I served as a servant to the Sage Emperor. I was there as a witness to your fight. When you died the Temporal Demon Spirit book split apart. Two pages fell into my hand. I awoke as my five year old self.” Nie Li’s shocked expression reappeared. She was on her second lifetime! However, she had said she served as an aid to the Sage Emperor. Was he already aware of Nie Li’s existence. “Nie Li, you should know that I am here for both Duan Jian and the Demon Lord. Both see as a faithful sister. My League is the strongest and most secure foundation in the Hidden Cloud Sect.” Nie Li’s eyes narrowed. “You are playing my sworn follower and both of my sworn enemy. Not a wise introduction, Zhao Dongmei. You have yet to convince me not to kill you.” Dongmei smiled even wider. For a tactful wordsmith her conversation with Nie Li was extremely straightforward at the moment. “It was only the start of my introduction. The latter half will be much more appealing. Although, I was a servant of the Sage Emperor in my first life it was not by choice. I had been taken from the Demon Lord’s side. My power reached a realm that was noticed before yours had. I was in no position to fight him. In his twisted humor I ended up as a servant. Feeding and taking care of him and his closest followers. When I was reborn, I came to realize of the existence of five inheritors that could defeat the Sage Emperor. However, each could be tempted by greed of promise of strength increase by the death of another. I have no desire to kill the other five. Although, you should know one is already dead. By the hands of an inheritor who I suspect has joined hands with the Sage Emperor himself. In any case, I have been working towards the goal of joining the remaining inheritors in an alliance. As you have realized by now, not one of us can stop him.” Dongmei had been right. The latter half of her introduction had lessened the urge to kill her. Although, not by much. “I would rather kill the Demon Lord.” Dongmei shook her head. “I cannot allow you to do that. At this point, it would completely ruin our chance of defeating the Sage Emperor. The Demon Lord is not yet aware of his role. Your confrontation must be an act that both crushes him in defeat and provides an opportunity for him to commit to your side. Ensuring Glory City’s future and all of our own. Nie Li took a step back from her and turned around. He began to pace the room. She seemed to have information he did not. However, she was not trustworthy at all. He turned around to face her. “What proof do I have to trust you.” Dongmei had expected this. She took a deep breath. “You do not have a reason to trust me, but I shall start by becoming transparent. Although, I am ranked number two in the Hidden Cloud Sect my sect is the strongest. Number one remains openly the strongest as it is run by the current Sect Master’s Son Liu Jinhai. Duan Jian’s Heavenly Wings and The Demon Lord’s Demonic Path rank third and fourth respectively. As it stands, I am set to become the next Sect Master of the Hidden Cloud Sect. As both the Heavenly Wings and Demonic Path have openly thrown in their support. Outside of the the sect I have sworn brothers and sisters in not only the remaining human sects, but the Demon Sect as well. My goal is too ensure the Demon Sect is taken over in a method that does not alert the Sage Emperor. After all, None of us are yet prepared to face him. Lastly, I come to ask you to strike a deal with me. One that I do intend to let everyone I work with know about.” Nie Li’s eyes narrowed. “What deal do you seek.” Dongmei stuck her hand out. “In one month’s time all sects will gather for a display of strength. Each sect will be lead by their respective new sect masters. When the time comes I wish you to defeat the Hidden Cloud sect. By the end of the tournament, all major human sects and the newly reorganized Demon Sect shall declare an alliance. As you will have Yu Yan come forth to explain about the Demon Beast crisis. At that point a portion of us shall secure the Tiny world and Draconic Ruins Realm defenses and practitioners. The rest shall explore other realms to gather allies and strength. It is imperative that we stop our selves from reaching Deity rank until we can all breakthrough at the exact time. When that occurs the Sage Emperor will notice our existence and our real fight will begin. Sect Master, Nie Li, can you agree to my terms of crushing the Demon Sect through the tournament, defeating my Hidden Cloud Sect and bringing the remaining Four inheritors together. Or must I resign my second life to death again.” Nie Li took a breath and shook her hand. Although he still planned to deal with the Demon Lord later, what Dongmei was proposing was a clever course of action for them to proceed in. Especially, if it lessoned the risk of the inheritors killing each other off. Yuyin couldn’t contain herself anymore. She walked over to the two of them. “Nie Li. You can’t seriously trust her. You don’t even know her true intentions! She played your sworn brother.” Nie Li smiled at her. He had come to the point with his relationship with her that she seemed endearing. As well as a sense of comfort, being that only Yuyin could converse with him about the future battle. Her dedication to him rivaling that of Duan Jian. Dongmei smiled sweetly at Yuyin. “Xiao Long, can you not really figure out why I grew close to Duan Jian? I have interest in him” Nie Li covered his mouth and laughed. He had suspected as much. He shouted at the door. “Alright, you guys come back in already.” The eleven other people from previously shyly walked back into the room. They had been caught spying and they hadn’t even heard anything. All of them slightly bitter about Long Yuyin being able to stay in the room. He pointed at Dongmei. “From now on Dongmei is our sister. She will soon be the new Sect Master of the Hidden Cloud. As well as the potential wife of our little Duan Jian.” Dongmei’s face was colored in a blush of red. Gu Bei clutching his chest. “I did not expect a beautiful woman to become our new sister.” Lu Piao made a loud huuuuh sound. “Nie Lie, she was raised by the Demon Lord.” She smiled at Lu Piao. “One cannot tell the uses of weed from the uses of grass until he plays around with them both.” Gu Lan cracked up laughing. “Nie Li, Sister Dongmei is interesting indeed.” Gu Bei allowed himself to be taken in by her intoxicating looks. Her appearance on par with the visiting Xiao Ning’er. She was a small, well curved girl. Skin the smoothest shade of pale moonlight. A small round face with perfectly shaped lavender eyes. All framed by wavy pale lavender hair that bordered on white pulled in a half up style. Even the clothes she wore were tactful yet revealing. It was if he was looking at a goddess of youthful love. Yet, this new sister of his may be married off to a brother he has never met. “Nie Li, what if I was to throw my hat in the ring of marriage. Surely, it would not affect our situation.” Nie Li cracked up laughing. “Pervert Gu Bei, you are welcome to try. However, Dongmei has her heart set on Duan Jian. You are welcome to try and suede it.” Lu Piao made another huuuuuh expression. “How can a woman’s heart be set on a man made of stone. Gu Bei, do not give up.” Li Xingyun stepped forward. “Xiao Mei, would you be bothered if I threw a stone into the pond.” Beiyan silently nodding his head in agreement. Yuyin could not understand the turn of events. Dongmei simply laughed. “You are all welcome to try. However, Duan Jian may have a body carved from stone, but I have a heart of stone. You may not suede me.” Gu Bei smiled. A challenge. His favorite woman. “Allow me to have the chance to crumble the stone away to bright jade.” Dongmei smiled on the outside, but frowned on the inside. Gu Bei would never have a chance with her. Dongmei lifted her two hands and a plum appeared. She handed it over to Gu Bei. “This is a heavens plum. Accept it as my gift to brother Gu Bei.” He greedily accepted the plum. Saddened when he saw Dongmei hand one to the others in the room. Afterwards, she waved goodbye to Nie Li. “Sect Master Nie Li, I believe it is time I return to the Hidden Cloud Sect.” Nie Li pointed at Gu Lan. “Dongmei, allow Li Xingyun and Gu Lan to go with. They, along with fifty Sky Origin Clan members and one hundred divine elixirs, should ease your transition to becoming Sect Master.” Li Xingyun shook his hands at Nie Li. He was giving him a chance. Gu Lan, however, understood the situation differently. Nie Li does not trust Dongmei. They were there to both raise her power and watch her course of actions. Lu Piao throwing his arm around a depressed Gu Bei. Dongmei narrowed her eyes at him for a moment, but quickly returned to smiling. “Many thanks, Sect Master Nie Li.” She turned to Gu Lan and Li Xingyun. “Shall we depart?” Li Xingyun immediately nodded. Gu Bei plucking some of his pride back with a last minute chirp. “Xingyun, I promise to explain to your men how you are aiming to not only conqueror the world, but the woman of your dreams.” Nie Li laughed. Dongmei simply winked at Gu Bei and took Xingyun’s hand. She pulled him towards the door. “Good Sect Master Nie Li, we shall part.” Gu Lan following the two out. Lu Piao turning to Nie Li. “Nie Li, are we really trusting someone raised by the Demon Lord?” He shook his head no. “No. We are using her.” Everyone in the room nodded their heads. This seemed more like the Nie Li they knew.
The Moon Represents My Heart – Teresa Teng
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