When Chu Li returned to Glory Will's Courtyard, he laid on his bed and closed his eyes to relax his brain, thinking about nothing. After his meditation, he had no more worries and he lost his sense of self.
He only opened his eyes again when Xue Ling called him for his meal. By then, the bedroom was already dark, and the window was painted red by the evening sky.
He went out of the bedroom and came to the main hall where Xue Ling was done setting the table.
Chu Li swept his eyes across the square table two soup dishes among a total of eight. It was much more extensive compared to the usual.
"What day is it today?" Chu Li asked as he sat down.
Xue Ling sat across him. First, she held the pot with both her hands and filled the white-jade cup to the brim. While she was pouring it, she asked, "Master, I heard that you guys have destroyed the Phoenix Tree Faction today?"
Chu Li looked at her with a frown.
Her clear eyes shone brightly. "Is it real?"
"You're very well-informed," Chu Li answered.
Xue Ling smiled. "It's been spread all over the Martial Arts Hall!"
Chu Li nodded. "Hmm, we destroyed Phoenix Tree Faction but it's just a small faction. It's not such a big deal."
"Phoenix Tree Faction!" Xue Ling exclaimed. "I hear that this faction is just rising up and it's quite impressive. Then why is it suddenly destroyed? Unless Master still hold on to that grudge of them causing trouble at Leisure Cloud Pub?"
"You don't know the reason?" Chu Li asked.
Xue Ling answered, "They say that Phoenix Tree Faction has committed a crime in town and they've killed someone."
Chu Li held up the white-jade cup and took a sip.
"How bold, killing someone in town!" Xue Ling snorted. "That's crazy!"
"It's not surprising that the accomplishment of their ambition was even more reckless."
"But who doesn't know since they've got the guts to murder people in town? The High Duke's Public House must hunt them down to the end and never let it go," Xue Ling said, "unless they're not afraid?"
"They dare to kill people in town. Of course, they're not afraid."
"They must be overconfident, probably thinking that they won't be caught!"
"Hmm" Chu Li carelessly picked up a piece of rib and chewed slowly.
Xue Ling's bright eyes stared at him. "Master, you've destroyed a faction. Don't you feel anything?"
"What feeling?" Chu Li drank a mouthful of wine.
"Don't you feel that you're amazing? Aren't you excited at all?" Xue Ling hopelessly looked at him. "Master, you're a killjoy!"
Chu Li did not have the energy to glare at her. "What's so exciting about killing people? You're now an Innate Master too you can be a Protector!"
"It's still better if I'm a Scribe." Xue Ling snorted.
Once she was a Protector, she would need to accept missions and won't be able to stay by his side to serve him. He had many problems and was difficult to serve but without his help, she would not have become an Innate Master. However, becoming a Protector right after she became an Innate Master and not serving him anymore was not genuine of her.
"If you want it, then do it. You don't have to accommodate me."
"It's not accommodating." Xue Ling shook her head and said, "Master, rumor said that you guys have injured ten Innate Masters. Is Phoenix Tree Faction really that powerful?"
"They've quite a few martial art masters," Chu Li answered.
"They were destroyed by you!" Xue Ling asked excitedly.
Chu Li looked at her and sighed. "Alright, I'll tell you the truth."
Xue Ling looked cold and detached without a hint of purity. After all, living her whole life in Jade Guardian Island made her less intrigued. Knowing people's evil intentions was just a concept understood in theory as there was no deeper understanding. Once she went out, she would be at a disadvantage.
Chu Li reminded her. "You can't tell anyone about this."
"I know, I know, I'll not spread it!" Xue Ling quickly nodded. "Hurry up and say it!"
Chu Li said, "This incident was Ren Public House's trap. I have to start from Jiang Kuai's town patrol"
He finished explaining the incident in one breath.
Xue Ling widened her eyes and looked at him in shock. "It's really a trap?"
Chu Li nodded and finished his drink.
Xue Ling subconsciously poured him another cup and asked surprisingly, "What type of brain does Lu Yurong has for her to come up with ideas like this?"
"That's why don't claim that you're the smartest." Chu Li sighed. "There are a lot of smart people out there!"
Xue Ling sighed too. "Our High Duke's Public House really have no luck, becoming enemies with Lu Yurong."
"We'll solve the problem when we come to it, we can't just lower our heads and beg for mercy." Chu Li took a sip of wine. "This woman is indeed cruel. It's impossible to protect ourselves from her."
"We don't even know how many times we have lost to her." Chu Li snorted while Xue Ling formed a smile. "But you're amazing, Master. You've solved a few mysteries and made her lose her soldiers. She must be hating you!"
Chu Li smiled.
Ren Public House can't wait to kill him quickly but he had cultivated the Imminent Skyline which could threaten the Grandmasters. Lu Yurong must have been holding back from taking action as it might involve her men.
It was a pity that they had not seen Lu Yurong before. He had to be familiar with Lu Yurong's thought process to avoid falling into her trap.
Chu Li knew that no matter intelligence or tricks, he could not compare himself to Lu Yurong. If he did not have his Omniscient Mirror, he would have fallen prey to them in the early days. He considered it not a noble win but it was still a win and it was better than losing.
If he abandoned the Omniscient mirror and battled with Lu Yurong, he would have been dead by now.
"If you want to become a Protector, bumping into these people is inevitable." Chu Li shook his head and said, "Based on your martial arts, I'm afraid you won't be able to escape."
Xue Ling frowned. "Such tough cases are hard to come by, right?"
Chu Li snorted. "Lu Yurong wants to go against our residence's Protectors. Won't it be your turn?"
Xue Ling's frown tightened. "Master, don't scare me!"
Chu Li shot a glance at her. "You think I'm scaring you?"
Xue Ling groaned. "Anyway, I won't be a Protector so you can relax!"
Chu Li smiled. "It's still the safest being in this residence."
Xue Ling rolled her eyes at him and snorted. "I understand. I know you want me to focus on serving you anyway."
Just as two of them were bickering, a door knock came from the outside.
Xue Ling glided to the courtyard door, pulled it open, and was greeted by a person holding the lower corners of her robe. "Lady Xiao!"
Xiao Qi, who was in a snow-white gown, slowly walked in and swept her eyes at Chu Li, who was in the main hall.
Chu Li got up and did a fist salute.
"Let's go visit Second Eldest Sister," Xiao Qi said.
Chu Li quickly said, "Coming!"
Xue Ling swiftly took out the silk handkerchief from her sleeve and handed it to Chu Li. He clumsily wiped his mouth twice before giving it back to Xue Ling as he followed Xiao Qi out of the courtyard.
The two of them walked slowly into the lush forest.
The night sky was like water where the moonlight shone everywhere, and insects chirped in a low sound, one after the other endlessly.
"Second Eldest Sister doesn't look well," Xiao Qi said.
Chu Li sighed. "Second Lady doesn't have a lot of vitality left in her. The Longevity Grass is blocked by the Vitality Sealing Finger so the effects cannot take place. The only way is to unblock the Vitality Sealing Finger."
"We still can't confirm whether it's the Vitality Sealing Finger."
"No effects after consuming the Longevity Grass is enough to indicate that it's the Vitality Sealing Finger." Chu Li furrowed his brows. "Second Lady doesn't have much time and it cannot be delayed."
At that moment, Xiao Qi turned silent and said faintly, "Let's go visit Second Eldest Sister first."
The reflection of the moon in the lake was swaying gently. However, the small boat ripped the calmness of the river.
When both of them stepped on the Symphony Island, the surrounding Protectors made no movements.
The island was lit with lamplights. Suddenly, the sound of guzheng drifted from afar as the night sky reflected on the lake's surface.
Chu Li could feel calmness and detachment in the sound of the guzheng.
"The sound of Second Eldest Sister's guzheng," Xiao Qi said.
Chu Li nodded. From the sound of the guzheng, they knew Xiao Shi had already seen through life and death. Hence, she had accepted reality and was not bothered by death.
Meditating in this mood would allow them to advance at a tremendous speed. Unfortunately, with this mood, they did not even try to cultivate Buddhism.
The two of them passed through a flower sea lit with lamplights, then reached the pagoda in the middle of the sea of flowers.
Xiao Shi sat in the pagoda stroking the guzheng in a snow-white robe with her pale face. Her gaze was dismal yet calm.