Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
There were often mighty ones getting in and out of Emperor Xia’s Palace, especially the princess’ residence.
The princess’ residence, which was usually extremely quiet, became apparently very lively for the past several days with people coming and going.
All of those from the Barren State of the Lower Worlds were allowed to come and go as they pleased, and it was something everyone in the royal palace knew. Princess Xia Qingyuan was being very kind to those from the Holy Zhi Palace of the Barren State, and it all had to do with Ye Futian.
The incident with just two cultivators from the Lower Worlds getting attacked would not have caused that much commotion otherwise.
They were even able to get help from Emperor Xia himself, and it was an enormous favor rarely seen.
Most of the people from the Holy Zhi Palace waited for news in the princess’ residence. Several people flashed on that day, appearing before the group.
“Phoenix, Ling’er.” The group noticed two within those who just showed up and walked up to them. The Black Wind Condor went up as well, feeling relieved as the crisis was finally averted.
“How are they doing?” Zhuge Mingyue asked.
“They’re fine now. Consider them actually came back from the gates of hell itself.” A figure wearing a cloak behind them said. His voice sounded rather croaked and his skin extremely pale.
“Thank you, senior,” the people from the Holy Zhi Palace expressed their gratitude. The Black Wind Condor’s eyes turned to one of the cultivators behind Long Ling’er and called, “Senior Long.”
That man’s eyes turned to look at the bird and said, “You are?”
“I’m Ye Futian. The beast could relay my thoughts directly,” the Black Wind Condor explained.
The middle-aged man caught on and said with a smile, “So we’ve met.”
“Yes, and it’s been many years indeed. Thank you for your help,” the Black Wind Condor said. The man was none other than Long Yitian, Long Ling’er’s uncle.
“What happened to you?”
“This is something that happened in the Battle of Proving Holiness all those years ago. I was surrounded when I was on my journey back then. My physical body perished and my soul rested within the dragon’s soul, merging with it. I then hid within a piece of saint level spirit jade that I came to possess by chance, enabling me to stay alive. His majesty Emperor Xia was gracious enough to forge a new physical body for me,” Long Yitian said.
“Brother, if it hadn’t been for uncle, I’d have been dead by now.” Long Ling’er’s eyes were somewhat reddened. It was a blessing in disguise.
If it had not been for Ling’er being in a critical condition, Xia Qingyuan would not have came to bother Emperor Xia.
“You’ll be fine,” the Black Wind Condor said.
“But Mu Yan is dead. Brother, Mu Yan isn’t someone of that sort. I felt that he was being controlled by someone else back then,” Long Ling’er said.
“I feel the same way about things. There are so many things that feel wrong with this.” Phoenix and Long Ling’er shared the same thoughts. She had a unique constitution and she had a phoenix as her Life Spirit, which was capable of the Nirvana Arts. All of that enabled her to keep her life hanging by a thread and eventually allowed her to survive. Ling’er, on the other hand, was protected by Long Yitian. However, Long Yitian had almost completely dissipated from the ordeal nonetheless.
Both of them were considered miraculously lucky to have survived the assassination attempt.
Mu Yan had apparent not been as lucky. He died from the poisoning on the spot, a testament of the poison’s powers.
“Yeah.” The Black Wind Condor nodded. He did not believe all of that to be just a coincidence.
“I have looked into Xiao Sheng’s actions after what happened. There was nothing suspicious about it. The Xiao clan had placed him in house arrest and forbade him from contacting anyone on the outside. I’d send men to keep a close eye on him as well.” Xia Qingyuan said, “Of course, the possibility of someone helping Xiao Sheng out cannot be ruled out. As such, I would look into anyone whom Xiao Sheng was able to mobilize after what happened all the way back then. More people would have been involved and the investigation would have taken quite some time.”
There did not seem to be any leads anyone could have exploited regarding the incident. Mu Yan might have been the only one who had been in contact with the person who poisoned him, but Mu Yan was already dead. There was no way to look into the people that he came into contact with before.
That lead was totally cut off, and they were only able to look into Xiao Sheng, who appeared to be the most suspicious at the moment.
However, from the current looks of things, there did not seem to be any openings to be had with Xiao Sheng.
“If that happened to truly be something that he pulled, he naturally would not have been able to do anything with the princess keeping a close eye on him. As the princess put it, someone might have been helping him. Although the possibility of the Xiao clan being involved being rather low, I’d like you to keep an eye on them as well,” the Black Wind Condor said.
“I would. I shall keep a close eye on things with Saint Xihua as well. While we can’t be sure if those two incidents were actually connected, but I’d look into it as well, to see if they had been coming into contact with someone suspicious.” Xia Qingyuan said, “I would look after the people of the Holy Zhi Palace in your stead.”
“Thank you, princess.” The Black Wind Condor said, “Please send my regards to his majesty as well.”
“You really have no intentions of returning then? All of these may have been directed at you?” Xia Qingyuan said.
“I’m not Ye Futian over there. Furthermore, you do have someone at Dali Imperial City, right?” Ye Futian asked.
“I do. I’d tell you how to contact them.” Xia Qingyuan added, “If anything else were to happen, return immediately.”
Ye Futian opened his eyes at a training ground in Dali Academy. The sword will circling around him gradually dissipated. His eyes looked cold.
Queen Xiao had gotten personally involved to mediate what happened back then, and he was unable to do anything about it. It’s not like I can go against Queen Xiao after all.
However, if he were to find out that it was Xiao Sheng who did all of that, there should not have been anyone to protect Xiao Sheng again.
It was hardly surprising why he kept suspecting that Xiao Sheng was the one involved. No one in Emperor Xia’s Realm had so much beef with him than Xiao Sheng after all.
“Seventh Swordsman.” A voice was heard. Ye Futian looked up and saw someone coming in his direction. It was none other than Li Yao.
He had been in contact with Li Yao a lot as of late, making them familiar with each other.
Technically-speaking, Li Yao was a student of the imperial advisor in name, which made the prince his senior.
“What brings you here, your highness?” Ye Futian called while remaining seated instead of getting up. He looked nonchalant, and that nonchalance was what would have appeared normal.
“The end of the year is near, and Dali Academy holds a forum at the end of the year of every year. The royal members of Dali Imperial City would hold a grand hunting event—the Royal Hunt—among the royal members instead. I’d like to invite you to join the event, if you’re willing,” Li Yao said.
“Royal Hunt?” Ye Futian asked in puzzlement.
“Indeed. A hunting event. There are tens of thousands of beasts at the west mountains of Dali Dynasty, which serve as the hunting ground of the royal members of Dali Dynasty. It is a training that is quite hard to come by,” Li Yao said.
“Any sacred beasts there?” Ye Futian asked.
“Of course.” Li Yao nodded. Ye Futian was unable to help but feel impressed. The royalty of Dali Imperial City was actually wealthy enough to keep tens of thousands of beasts just for training by hunting, and they even had sacred beasts.
“If this is meant for royalty, wouldn’t having me join in be breaking the rules?” Ye Futian asked.
“Not at all. Royal members have the right to bring others to hunt.” Li Yao smiled, “There would be quite a number of attendants and servants by then. Seventh Swordsman, you’re now invincible under Saint Plane. No one else below Saint Plane in all of Dali Dynasty would be able to fight you, and you wouldn’t be able to further your sword training. Even the saints found in Dali Imperial City wouldn’t have actually fought you in earnest. Hunting then becomes a great training opportunity to have you feel the true power of saints among demonic beasts. You daring enough to try it out?”
Ye Futian’s expression became pointed and said, “How could I refuse an invitation from you, your highness? I shall stay by your side during the hunt.”
“Very well. You indeed are number below Saint Plane in all of Dali.” Li Yao smiled and nodded, “Well then, I’d keep you posted when the time comes.”
“Alright.” Ye Futian nodded and Li Yao left with his people.
Ye Futian watched Li Yao leave and thought that the prince was as nice as a prince could have been to him.
He was peerless below the Saints and they both studied under the same teacher. As such, it was not difficult to come to the conclusion that Li Yao was buying Ye Futian over to be of help to him in the future.
It was quite a pity that the feud between them both meant that one of them must die.
“So his highness has invited you to join the Royal Hunt eh?” A voice was heard and several people were seen walking towards him. Ye Futian lifted his head and saw Nan Zhai, Mu Chunyang and Lu Chuan.
“Yeah.” Ye Futian nodded and said, “What brings you here today, brothers?”
“We’re heading to the Imperial Advisor’s Residence. There is a lunch event held today,” Lu Chuan answered.
Ye Futian was puzzled. Lunch event at the Imperial Advisor’s Residence.
“Sure.” Ye Futian got up and said.
“So, have you found yourself a girl whom you can talk about life with?” Nan Zhai narrowed his eyes and asked with a smile.
Ye Futian was rather speechless. He then said, “Find yourself one then, second brother.”
Nan Zhai stared at his face and said, “If your brother here is as young and handsome as you’re, boyyyy…”
Ye Futian was exasperated. If it had not been for the conversation they last had, he would have thought Nan Zhai to be a good-for-nothing lecherous old man instead.
“Brother, the Seventh Swordsman here is a swordsman and has a pure mind of the sword. Don’t go about tainting him, will you?” Mu Chunyang interjected, finding the second brother’s antics intolerable.
“He needs to relax precisely because he’s so damn tense. Let that stick, will you?” Nan Zhai said with a condescending tone.
“You’re the older brother. Have it your way.” Mu Chunyang did not continue to argue with Nan Zhai and Lu Chuan at the side then smiled at Ye Futian, saying, “That’s our second brother for you. You could learn about divine path from him. As for other matters, you’ll be the judge yourself.”
Ye Futian nodded. The imperial advisor had few students, but the atmosphere among them was an amicable one. It truly made him feel like he was back in the Cottage from all those years ago.
One could have told something about a teacher by looking at the student. It seemed that the imperial advisor was indeed someone worthy of respect.
But then again, their stance seemed to have been decided right from the start.
However, what Ye Futian saw at the moment was not probably all there was to it.
Yan Yuan and Wang Zhong were already waiting for them. All of them gathered before going to the Imperial Advisor’s Residence.
Lunch was prepared when they came to a quiet compound within the Imperial Advisor’s Residence.
Ye Futian found that other than the imperial advisor, there was also a woman present.
Ye Futian was rather surprised and turned to look at her. The woman looked very pretty, sporting a pure, natural look that was pleasant to the eye, as if she was favored by the heavens.
She turned to look at Ye Futian as well and asked, “Father, is this the Seventh Swordsman?”
“Indeed.” The imperial advisor nodded with a smile and looked at Ye Futian, saying, “Seventh Swordsman, this is Feixue.”
Ye Futian was surprised to find that the imperial advisor actually had a daughter. He had never met her before.
A beaming smile was seen on Feixue’s lips, yet her eyes looked to be devoid of life. One could not have seen a smile in them, which startled Ye Futian.
“Sister.” Ye Futian called.
“Sister? I’m not father’s student. Just call me by name.” Feixue smiled warmly and continued, “As for my eyes, don’t mind them. I can’t see after all.”
She’s blind? Ye Futian was somewhat shaken. For some reasons, he felt a tinge of sorrow hearing that she was unable to see.
While Feixue did not have looks that would have had men killing each other for, but he found her appearance to be really pleasant on the eye. It was some mystical feeling that he was unable to quite place.
“Not even your proficiency with the arts is able to do anything about it, teacher?” Ye Futian asked the imperial advisor.
The imperial advisor shook his head in reply.