chapter 13 You protected me in the past, I will protect you in the future

by Arthur 16:30,Sep 28,2023
The night was as dark as ink, with countless twinkling stars scattered across the sky, creating a dazzling and beautiful celestial painting.
Under the starry sky, Nick Jiang and Mia Su sat close together, feeling Mia Su's warmth and even catching a whiff of her enticing fragrance.
When Mia Su turned her head to ask Nick Jiang something, their lips were less than ten centimeters apart, and her warm breath blew gently on Nick Jiang's face, causing a ticklish sensation.
"That day, when you and Mom went to find Levi Liu, I secretly followed you and overheard Mom's conversation with Levi Liu. I found out that I wasn't Mom's biological child," Nick Jiang gazed into the distant horizon and said softly, "At that moment, I was completely stunned, and I couldn't even believe what I had heard. Later, I couldn't make out what you both were saying. I left the hall in a daze, walked out of Liu's mansion, and then ran along the streets."
"You must have been very upset at that time," Mia Su looked at him with sympathy.
Nick Jiang was only twelve years old back then and couldn't handle such a revelation.
"I was so upset that I cried. I ran and cried all the way until my tears ran dry and I had no strength left," Nick Jiang said with a bitter smile.
"Because you were so upset, you left without saying a word?" Mia Su asked.
"No, it's not that. When I ran, I ended up sitting next to one of the bridge piers under a big bridge. I sat there for the whole afternoon, and after my emotions stabilized, I was planning to go home and ask Mom what was going on. But then I met an old man," Nick Jiang shook his head lightly.
"An old man? Who was he?" Mia Su was curious.
"He was my master, known as Master Tianlong," Nick Jiang recalled the image of the old man in his mind and said with a wry smile, "I once asked him for his real name, but he didn't tell me."
"But how could you just go with a stranger?" Mia Su couldn't understand.
"It wasn't the first time I had met him. We had met before when we were still at the Su family. I was six years old at the time, and I happened to encounter him in the yard. He claimed to be Grandpa's friend and played a game with me, teaching me a breathing method to follow his rhythm. I found it interesting at the time and did as he said. When he left, he made a deal with me that if I remembered the breathing method after a month, he would buy me ice cream. I agreed," Nick Jiang explained.
Mia Su had a realization.
Nick Jiang had suffered from severe coldness in his body as a child, and even though he took medicine every day, there was no improvement.
Harper Liu didn't allow him to eat cold foods. Therefore, Nick Jiang had yearned to eat ice cream.
"A month later, I met him again, and he saw that I had kept my promise. He bought me ice cream and told me to continue using that special breathing method for an hour every day, preferably right after waking up."
Nick Jiang was completely immersed in his memories and continued, "I agreed to that too, and I followed that special breathing method every day."
"Was that breathing method a martial arts technique? I remember that your health started improving after you turned six," Mia Su said, realizing that Nick Jiang's improved health might be related to the special breathing method taught by Master Tianlong.
"Yes, it was an extremely profound internal martial art technique, but it was just the basic level, mainly focusing on breath control. I didn't practice the later parts of that technique until I left with my master from Guishan," Nick Jiang nodded, then added, "Later, when I followed my master to practice martial arts, he told me that on the night we first met, he had secretly entered my room and helped me open my meridians, guiding me to follow that internal martial art technique for breathing and forming the memory. After that night, not only did I learn the breathing method of that internal martial art technique, but I also naturally entered that state of breathing every night after falling asleep, and my health gradually improved."
"No wonder. But, Nick, even if you had met him before, you shouldn't have left without saying goodbye to Mom and me. You have no idea how worried Mom was when she couldn't find you. She was almost driven to madness," Mia Su recalled the tearful days when Harper Liu was searching for Nick Jiang.
"I'm sorry, sis," Nick Jiang heard Mia Su's words and felt guilty once again. He could imagine how devastated Harper Liu and Mia Su must have been when he left without a word. In addition to his guilt, without waiting for Mia Su to speak again, he explained, "The reason I didn't say goodbye to you both was because my master told me that I wasn't Mom's biological child and had no blood ties with the Liu family. He said that the Liu family wouldn't go to great lengths for me, and if I returned to them, it would be a dead end."
"No wonder you looked so surprised today when you found out that the Liu family wanted to protect you back then," Mia Su said with a bitter smile.
"At that time, I thought what my master said made sense, so I left with him. I followed him to Longhu Mountain, became his disciple, trained in martial arts for four years, and then went out into the world, where I met brothers and sisters like Wenzler Xing."
Nick Jiang thought for a moment but didn't tell Mia Su that in order to avenge his biological mother Lambert Ye, he sneaked into the underground world, establishing the Zhanlong Palace and eliminating underground forces like the Crimson Hell.
The underground world was too dark and bloody, completely different from the ordinary world, and Mia Su knew that those things were not good.
"You went out into the world, but you didn't come back to see Mom and me," Mia Su complained, "You have no idea how much I missed you."
"I actually wanted to come back to see you both a long time ago, but I got delayed by some things."
Nick Jiang touched his nose awkwardly and then asked, "Sis, what about you? How have these eight years been for you?"
"After you left, I was heartbroken and took a year off from school to recover. Then I continued my education. After graduation, I originally wanted to work in Donghai, but Grandpa didn't agree and asked me to come back and participate in the family business. I thought coming back would allow me to be with Mom, so I returned..."
Mia Su leaned on Nick Jiang's shoulder and recounted everything she had experienced in the past eight years.
Although Nick Jiang knew every detail of Mia Su's past eight years, he didn't interrupt and listened with great interest.
"Nick, what is the world of warriors like?"
After a long while, Mia Su finished her story and murmured the question.
Nick Jiang hesitated for a moment, pondering whether to tell Mia Su some things that ordinary people didn't know.
However—
Before Nick Jiang could figure out how to respond, he heard Mia Su's steady breathing.
Mia Su had fallen asleep, leaning on Nick Jiang's shoulder.
Since the Zhen family had started retaliating against the Liu family, Mia Su hadn't had a good night's sleep.
From the initial business revenge to the later forced marriage, Mia Su had been enduring it all with gritted teeth, but she was already mentally and physically exhausted.
Now, with the crisis resolved, she was completely relaxed, leaning on Nick Jiang's shoulder, her mood more relaxed than ever before, and fatigue washing over her like a tide.
"Sis, the world is not as peaceful as people imagine. The Long Country and even the world are facing significant crises. Martial arts are flourishing globally, and that has its consequences," Nick Jiang whispered as he gently lifted Mia Su and looked at her tear-stained face.
"In the past, no matter what happened, you would protect me. In the future, no matter what changes come our way, I will protect you from behind."
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