Translator:Nyoi-Bo StudioEditor:Nyoi-Bo Studio
The elite forces departed from Emperor Xias Realm several days later. They headed towards the battlefield and prepared to rendezvous with the Eight Legions.
Ye Futian sent four Holiness of Nirvanas out as well. He sent Yaya out with them too, but she was following the ones from the Sword Clan of Lihen.
The Swordmaster of Lihen and Yaya had both fought to be the top swordsman in Emperor Xias Realm. Presently, both renowned swordsmen joined hands as they made for the inner parts of enemy territory. None was able to stand in their way.
They could have let Emperor Xia take them to Dali Imperial City right away just as they had done previously, yet they did not. They went on to wage a war across Emperor Lis Realm instead, charging towards the palace. That was the only way they would have been able to truly lean on the emperor.
What they were really doing was waging a realm war, not staging a rescue operation.
Every single group that departed had several demonic beasts with them, all of which had been enthralled by Ye Futian. By doing so, each group could communicate with the others. Ye Futian served as the hub, knowing at all times what others were doing.
Ye Futian kept only one Holiness of Nirvana by his side, and that was Wu Yong.
The leaders from the Nanli Tribe, the Beili Tribe, and the Vermilion Bird Clan, as well as Shen Tianzhan, had all departed.
Ye Futian remained back at the royal palace, not because he wouldnt participate in the fight, but because he had a mission of his own.
Emperor Xia arranged for Ye Futian and his people to have their own palace within the royal palace. No one other than royal relatives had ever enjoyed such a privilege.
Even people like the Great Shaman had only been granted access to training grounds and their quarters, instead of being given their own palace.
However, none found that arrangement peculiar. Emperor Xia had long treated Ye Futian as a member of his family. Ye Futians actual status with the emperor was an open secret.
That palace had pavilions, towers and even a waterfall, making the place look like a paradise.
Ye Futian and the fifth prince, Xia Lun, were engaged in a game of chess. Xia Qingyuan was present as well.
I just recalled that I have something to attend to. Please excuse me. Qingyuan, take my place, Xia Lun said to his sister. He rose and patted himself. Without even turning his head around, he began to leave, looking dashing and carefree.
Three losses straight, Xia Qingyuan said in a low voice, What a formidable player indeed.
Xia Luns mouth twitched, but he still did not turn around. He walked away with his head held high.
He was feeling rather frustrated. It was not only that Ye Futian was very talented in cultivation, which made the princes look bad, but many outside the royal palace were talking. They had been saying that Ye Futian looked more like the emperors son than the princes.
Xia Lun was very proficient at the art of chess, and he had actually intended to kill some of Ye Futians brimming might, saving some face for the princes.
The outcome was horrendous. The games only made the prince feel that Ye Futians ability at calculation was horrifying.
Youre up for a game, princess? Ye Futian asked Xia Qingyuan.
Xia Qingyuan shook her head. Im not a player.
Allow me instead, interjected Yan Yuan as he approached the pair.
All right, older brother. Lets do this. Ye Futian set the board up. Nan Zhai and Feixue were there at the side as well.
Both of them started playing and Ye Futian found that Yan Yuan was also a very skilled player. An intense game emerged between the two masters.
Ye Futian learned how to play chess at Chess Saint Villa many years ago, but that did not mean he was invincible. The Chess Saint was but a common saint. Yan Yuan, on the other hand, had become a Holiness of Nirvana. He wondered just how capable his older brother was at calculation.
Furthermore, Yan Yuan did not let up at all, surrounding Ye Futian on all sides. It seemed to reflect his current state of mind.
Yan Yuan must have been worried about the Imperial Advisor.
They wanted to help but they were unable to. It would have incurred Emperor Lis wrath otherwise, and their teacher was still a prisoner of Emperor Li.
No need to get too worried. Emperor Li isnt dumb. He wouldnt have acted against our teacher before things became more apparent. They would have been at an absolute disadvantage otherwise.
Theyre scared of pissing us off, Ye Futian said. After all, the invasion was done in the name of waging a realm war.
Right. Yan Yuan nodded. As a Holiness of Nirvana, his state of mind had long transformed, becoming indomitable.
However, the matter at hand still had to do with their teacher, so it was unavoidable that they still felt frustrated. Even though they were practically able to see the outcome, they still worried nonetheless.
Yan Yuan was not the only one who felt that way. Nan Zhai, Feixue and the others were quiet as well. It was apparent that a load rested on their collective shoulders.
But then again, they were all very supportive of Ye Futians operation. If they were to simply leave their teacher locked up in a cell, no one could tell what would happen to him.
Their teacher was no longer what he had once been. His training had been wiped clean and his life might be in an extremely frail state.
It was quite a pity. Despite all of them having trained in the Deed of Thorough Comprehension, none of them were able to immerse themselves as deeply in the method as their teacher. They were unable to see fates and luck in the great path.
You guys are really taking your time. The new voice belonged to the fourth prince, the incredibly dashing Xia Kun. He approached the game.
Your highness. Ye Futian rose and bowed, showing his respect.
Xia Kun smiled. Save the formalities, Im just here to look around.
All right. Ye Futian sat and continued to play.
Xia Kun was only there to watch. He then said, Bravo. I didnt know that Sir Yan Yuan and Ye Futian were so good at chess. Im sure my brother was having a hard time earlier.
The fifth prince is very skilled as well, Ye Futian replied.
Hed like to think so. Xia Kun smiled and then followed up with, Qingyuan, since when have you been interested in chess?
Im just watching, Xia Qingyuan said.
Well, we never saw you watch a game before. Xia Kun chuckled.
Xia Qingyuan eyed him with a speechless look.
All right, Im done bothering you guys. Come to my place if you could spare the time, Brother Ye, Xia Kun said.
Ye Futian smiled and nodded. He received a telepathic message from Feixue.
His hand hung in midair, the chess piece still in hand. Ye Futian then lifted his head and asked with a smile, How is the Xiao clan doing now that Xiao Sheng is gone?
Xia Kun stopped and turned around, freezing in place. He then turned his head to look at Ye Futian. He saw that Ye Futian was talking to his sister.
Ye Futian turned to look at Xia Kun and asked, What happened your highness?
Nothing. Xia Kun shook his head, before turning around and leaving.
Xia Qingyuan shot a puzzled look at Ye Futian. That question sounded like it came out of nowhere. Neither she nor Xia Kun knew how to react.
Ive never left the royal palace since I returned, so I have little idea. But after what happened, grandfather felt he should keep a tight leash on the clan, Xia Qingyuan answered.
Whats done is done, and Xiao Sheng paid for it. Dont let this get between you and Old Man Xiao, princess, Ye Futian said and looked at Feixue, who was at his side.
Feixues expression changed slightly. I sense a murderous intent, she said to him telepathically.
Ye Futians hand froze again, then he moved his piece on the board.
Feixues abilities were only known to those from the Imperial Advisors Residence. He hadnt told anyone in Emperor Xias Realm, not even Xia Qingyuan.
If that ability of hers became known, people would have been on-guard against her at all times.
After Feixues telepathic message, he deliberately asked Xia Qingyuan about the Xiao clan, specifically bringing up Xiao Shengs name.
He was doing that just to see how Xiao Kun would react. The prince covered himself pretty well, but hints were there nonetheless. Then again, that hardly proved anything, as turning around would have been normal. But that emotion could not be fake, and that was not something he was able to cover.
Murderous intent welled up in Xia Kuns mind as soon as Xiao Shengs name was brought up. He wondered what exactly that meant.
They couldnt find the culprit back then. All the evidence had been destroyed as well.
However, as the investigation went on, Ye Futian speculated that the likeliest suspects could have only come from the royal palace. Only someone in the royal palace would have been able to learn everything he was doing, as well as determine that he had headed to Emperor Lis Realm back then.
However, that was all just speculation. His status didnt allow him to look into those from the royal palace. It was impossible without hard evidence.
Xia Qingyuan frowned after Xia Kun left. She looked at Ye Futian and asked, What was that about? She was not dumb and had naturally known something was amiss. She believed Ye Futian might have been probing. But then again, she was unable to understand why he wanted to probe her fourth brother all of a sudden.
Furthermore, he had only probed her Xia Kun and no one else.
Ye Futian looked up at Xia Qingyuan, feeling rather complicated. This was not the outcome he wanted. The matter had to do with the princes. He was at a loss about what to do.
A question lingered on his mind. He and Xia Kun had not been acquainted before. If there were concerns about the succession of the throne, Ye Futian would serve an important role by Xia Qingyuans side. But it was not Xia Kun who would be concerned.
Princess, which prince was Xia Kun closest to? Ye Futian asked.
Xia Qingyuans expression kept changing in response to the question. It was apparent that she recalled something extremely bad. So bad that she couldnt bring herself to say it.
Princess, Ye Futian called.
Xia Qingyuan turned her head around, looking somewhere else. It was apparent that she had managed to figure something out herself.
Is it him? Xia Qingyuan turned her eyes back at Ye Futian.
Ye Futian looked at her the same way and said, There is no mistake about it. Even if he isnt the one, he knows something, or may have been directly involved.
Why else would Feixue detect a murderous intent in Xia Kuns mind at the mention of Xiao Shengs name?
His current status and power were such that even if he had wanted to kill Ye Futian all those years ago, he would have been able to easily conceal his thoughts.
However, the incident with Xiao Sheng had been an unresolved threat, and it had something to do with what happened back then.
As such, it became apparent that Xia Kun was involved.
How did you come to that conclusion? Xia Qingyuan asked.
Lets just leave it at that. It has to do with some other people and I dont want to see them involved. Do you believe me, princess?
Xia Qingyuan did not say anything else. She actually had an answer deep down. Her instinct was to believe him. The results of the investigations back then strongly suggested someone from the royal palace was involved. It could only have been someone important.
Couple all that with the way her brother had reacted to Ye Futians question and she realized what was going on.
She felt pained at the complications. It was the last thing she wanted to see.