A Passing Disciple
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Daiyu's body collapsed on to a pile of freshly fallen petals, and the girl was instantly covered in pink. Dark eyelashes were hiding her brown eyes, and her hair covered her soft pale face. Even the passing breeze seemed to stay still to look at the unconscious girl.

"Senior... senior sister?" Huizhong stood in shock; his eyes widened at the sight of the fallen girl on the ground.

What happened?

Wasn't she fine before?

"Senior sister!" Running over to her fallen body, Huizhong rolled Daiyu on to her back and felt her forehead. His fingers were met with a scorching fever. What to do? What happened to her? Huizhong turned his head frantically. He needed to find help. With his thoughts progressing in chaos, he hurried out of the courtyard, hollering for help.

Hearing the desperate shouts, many of the nearby disciples frowned and abandoned their tasks. A small crowd was already beginning to assemble due to the commotion. Nearby, Guiren set down a basket of dried herbs, and his eyes adjusted to the person yelling.

What was happening?

However, soon his pupils contracted.

Wasn't that the boy chosen as Daiyu's junior brother?

Guiren felt his heart being squeezed at the sight of the boy.

That day when he attempted to confront the boy, he discovered he couldn't lift a finger against him. Freezing in place and seeing the other person so weak and covered in injuries, Guiren found himself thinking of his younger self. In his past life, wasn't he the same? Covered in wounds and targeted by hate, he was also selected by Daiyu.

Guiren nearly missed a heartbeat as the feeling of ice-cold water seemed to wash over his mind.

Was there no difference between him and others?

Then, that year... did she choose him out of pity?

Hiding the anguish in his heart, Guiren merely tried to smile and let the other go.

He already knew he didn't deserve a place next to Daiyu. Nevertheless, it didn't stop his aching heart. Holding his chest, Guiren departed from the scene, his eyes downcasted.

Why did it hurt so much?

Seeing the boy yell about so blatantly, Guiren turned to leave. However, Huizhong suddenly caught the sight of Guiren. Recognizing the other, he rushed over and hooked his hands onto Guiren's sleeves.

"Older brother, wait. Older brother, do you remember me?"

Guiren turned his head to meet Huizhong 's bright eyes.

Yes.

How can I not?

You're the one Daiyu chose.

However, Huizhong 's next words sent Guiren alarmed, "Senior sister is injured. I need help."

What?

Guiren's heart plunged, his breath quickened as he tried to calm himself down. After Huizhong's loud statement, whispers started to build around the crowd, and they seemed to burrow into Guiren's ears. He quickly arranged a laughing expression on his face.

Playfully patting Huizhong on the head, Guiren laughed, "Looks like you really are easy to fool. Didn't you know what I said was a joke?"

Hearing Guiren's words, the crowd became disinterested. Looks like it was just a prank, why be bothered? Huizhong looked distressed at the departing crowd and looked at Gurien, confused only to be met with cold eyes.

"Take me there," Guiren's voice was strangely calm, hiding his genuine emotions.

Once the pair arrived at the courtyard, Guiren's fingers shook. His mind quickly became distorted. A scene where a body in white covered in blood on a silent night flashed across his mind.

No!

I can't lose you this time. Guiren's heart felt trapped within his throat. He did wish to see her again... but never like this. He walked over to the fallen Daiyu and checked her pulse. Seems like she had spiritual power deficiency, why?

Huizhong ran over, his eyes frantic once again, "Why did you dismiss the crowd? We need hel-"

His next words were stopped by a sharp slap to his face, and Huizhong stumbled back in shock. The slap was stinging, and Huizhong looked at Guiren, stunned.

"O-older broth-brother?"

Guiren stared at him with blank eyes, carefully explaining, "Daiyu is the esteemed senior of the sect; she is the pillar of the sect and its future. Many, if not, all the disciples will look up to her. Running around and screaming that Daiyu is injured will throw the sect into disorder."

Daiyu was a great sect leader. Guiren had always overlooked her efforts.

"But she needs help," Huizhong numbly stated.

Guiren's eyes suddenly drifted to outside the courtyard, and his eyes darkened. Carefully gathering Daiyu in his arms, he passed her to Huizhong.

"With your method, you'll cause all the hiding enemies to strike," Guiren's words were so wistful they faded into the air.

Huizhong looked up in surprise, his face reddened in shame. He never thought of it like that. He had been too rash, too young.

"What do I do now?" Huizhong asked, uncertain.

Guiren paused. He wasn't sure himself, "Bring her to sect master."

Guiren turned away, but Huizhong 's next words stopped him, "Older brother, where are you going? Are you not coming with me?"

Guiren looked away, hiding his eyes, "I still need to take care of something. You're her junior brother now, and you need to take care of her. I'm just a passing disciple."

Sorry, my dear readers, I was studying for my AP exam and I just drifted off into the world of tests and anxiety.

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