Baili Chao didn’t say it out loud but his mind inevitably flashed back to the way the red priest had interacted with Yun Bei Fen and how interested the four guardians had been in Luo Lin. No matter what, even if he himself didn’t make it, these four could probably survive under the protection of the guardians. At that time, he could just send them over there and then hope for the best.
Even though he had a responsibility toward the Teng Yong Sect as one of their Elders, as a Master, he still believed that he was even more responsible for these four. If everything was hopeless anyway, then forget about the sect, it would be good to just save a few people. And of course, he hoped that his disciples would be among those.
Elder Baili took a deep breath and then slowly exhaled. He was worried about the near future, especially since it seemed like Yun Bei Fen would soon turn into a bargaining chip. Naturally, he didn’t want any of that to happen but he also knew that the demonic sect wouldn’t just sit back and twiddle their thumbs. They had prepared for so long. There had likely been a trap in place since long ago. And with his little disciple being that kind of naive, little bunny … he had no hope that Yun Bei Fen would spot it and evade it in time.
Looking at his first disciple, Elder Baili sighed again. “The upcoming days won’t be easy. Not for you and not for your juniors either. You promise me that you’ll take care of yourself and also keep an eye on them.”
Zhi Guan nodded. This matter, it didn’t even need to be said. He had originally picked up the sword to protect his family and he would continue to use it for that purpose until the day he couldn’t hold it any longer.
Back then, when he promised this to himself he had been thinking of his mother. He had never thought that that would change but the war had ended and she had been left with a son she didn’t know what to do with. In the end, it had been best for him to leave. Without him around, she might have had it easier anyway.
Still, he had been at a loss when his Master took him to the Teng Yong Sect. Even though he could learn more and perfect his sword arts, what did it matter if there was no use for them? This was what he had thought for the longest time.
When Yan Hong Min became his Master’s second disciple and he saw him causing mischief everywhere in the sect, he had at least had some kind of purpose: to keep this troublemaker from further harm if he pissed off the wrong person one day. It might not be right but he had never cared much about that. His family was his family, after all. Unless a certain line was crossed, he would always stand in front of them.
This feeling had only grown when Luo Lin joined them. He hadn’t known how to interact with him at first but he had never doubted that he should protect him. Whatever happened, he’d try and keep him safe. For the longest time, he had just done that. After all, Luo Lin did tend to attract some unsavory figures. Without somebody cleaning up behind him, who knew what would happen?
Of course, nothing needed to be said about Yun Bei Fen’s role. If he had thought that Luo Lin was fragile when they first met, then one glance at the little bunny was enough to know that he was naive and much too small to be left to his own devices. By now, even though Yun Bei Fen had stayed with them for a good fifteen years, he still felt that he was just as small and naive as back then. Well, maybe he had grown a bit but he was still pretty short. It just couldn’t be helped.
Zhi Guan sighed just like his Master when he thought of his juniors. These three … no matter how he looked at it, they had always needed his protection. Right now, it was just more of the same.
Unfortunately, the threat was getting bigger so it would be more difficult to keep them safe. But at the same time, he also wasn’t alone any longer. There was Shen Lei who would give his life for Luo Lin in a heartbeat and Mei Chao Bing who clearly felt as well that Yun Bei Fen needed to be protected. With these two supporting him, even this renewed threat could be kept at bay.
Elder Baili saw his disciple deep in thought and knew that he realized just how bad the situation was. Well, it probably didn’t need to be said after what Mei Chao Bing had insinuated before.
He cleared his throat and glanced at the door, making sure that the others weren’t back yet. “If … — and I’m only saying if — matters get worse later and you see that there is no way to win, then you take your juniors and flee. I don’t care where although the guardians might be of help. Either way, just take them somewhere safe and make sure they’ll be alright.
“The four of you …” He furrowed his brows, not sure how to put this into words. “You’re my only disciples. I want you to survive and I want you to live well no matter what it takes.”
Zhi Guan nodded. He and his Master had never talked about feelings but he was vaguely aware that he saw them probably in the same way that he saw his three juniors: as family members. Naturally, he wouldn’t want them to suffer. “I’ll do whatever I can. Don’t worry, Master. Even if I don’t make it myself, I won’t allow anything to happen to my juniors.” Yes, no matter what, he would find a way to keep them safe.