After Chu Li went back to the small courtyard, he began to test the power of the second level of Scripture of Life and Death.
Using the energy of the Scripture of Life and Death, he nurtured a small pine tree in the woods and after two hours, this pine tree grew an annual ring and increased in girth.
Chu Li was very surprised. He did not expect the energy of the Scripture of Life and Death to have such power.
So to say, two hours were equivalent to a year, twenty hours were equivalent to ten years and two hundred hours were equivalent to one hundred years. If such a powerful energy was used to nurture precious Spirit Herbs, imagine how great the harvest would be! It really deserved to be the Scripture of Life and Death!
Spirit Herb's efficacy was often related to the age of the herb. An older herb will have a more powerful efficacy. The difference between the same type of Spirit Herbs of ten years of age and a hundred years of age was equivalent to the difference between heaven and earth.
He decided to keep this a secret, keeping it absolutely confidential and not letting others know.
After all, this involved too many gains and interests. It will inevitably lead to trouble so the top priority was to learn medical skills and alchemy. Once he had his own Spirit Herbs with powerful efficacy, he can make precious spirit pills and use them secretly, unbeknownst to all. Just thinking about it made him feel that this was a wonderful idea and he was so excited that he could barely contain it.
At noon, Xue Ling made a dozen dishes and the stone table in the pagoda was full of food. Even if they were all delicious, it was impossible for the two to finish eating all of them.
Chu Li knew that she was happy so he did not say anything to dampen her spirit, instead, he praised her and proposed to have a few drinks together to help her get over her shock.
Just after dinner, Siao Qi who was dressed in a white clothing pushed open the door and came in, followed by Su Ru who was wearing an apricot gown, looking beautiful and pleasant.
When they came into the pagoda, Su Ru chuckled, "Chu Li, congratulations! You are now a rank two Scribe!"
Chu Li looked at Siao Qi.
Siao Qi, in a flawless white clothing and her face as fair as jade, gracefully sat across from him. She nodded and said, "This time you did a meritorious deed by saving second eldest sister, so you are promoted to rank two."
Chu Li smiled, "This ranking advancement is too easy, right?"
To rise from rank three to rank two, one must achieve an outstanding contribution. Even though he saved Siao Shi's life, he was still not qualified to be promoted to rank two.
Siao Qi said, "In this matter, you took the initiative to sacrifice yourself to save second eldest sister so this can be an exception...Su Ru, go and make some desserts with Xue Ling."
"Yes," Su Ru pulled Xue Ling and they left the pagoda.
Chu Li looked at Siao Qi in puzzlement.
Siao Qi took out a paper from her the sleeve and handed it to Chu Li, "These are our informants in Ren Public House. Take a look."
Chu Li frowned, "My Lady wants to enter the faction immediately?"
Siao Qi said, "Within a month."
"That early?" Chu Li took the paper, glanced at the content and imprinted it into his mind.
Siao Qi shook her head, "It's a rare opportunity."
Chu Li nodded with understanding.
She wanted to enter Snow Lunar Pavilion without arousing suspicions so she needed a unique opportunity and could not enter like normal. To start as a new disciple would be too time-consuming.
Chu Li flicked gently and the paper turned into powder which was then blown away by a gust of wind.
Siao Qi said, "All the espionage will be under your responsibility in the future. You can just report to Big Brother directly and act as you see fit."
"I will do my best," Chu Li said.
Siao Qi sighed, "You know that second eldest sister has an engagement with Prince An, right?"
She was somewhat worried about the reaction of Chu Li. If he really loved her second eldest sister deeply, he might become angry and full of hatred after hearing this news. It was too easy to generate hatred from love.
Chu Li lifted a brow and nodded lightly.
He had Omniscient Mirror, so when he and Siao Tie Ying met with them earlier, he had seen the thoughts of Siao Shi.
Siao Shi wanted to marry into the Imperial Residence of Prince An and become the princess consort of Prince An, giving the public house a chance to breathe easily, no longer being pressured by the Imperial Household and Ren Public House will not dare to attack them unscrupulously.
Chu Li made no comment on her thoughts.
Siao Shi's and Siao Qi's character were totally different. It might have been due to her sickness that she was more indifferent to life and indifferent to herself.
She knew that if she was not born in the public house, it was most likely that she would not live for more than ten years. Her big brother, third younger sister and fourth younger brother did all that they can to lengthen her life. The Longevity Grass was not easy to find and the public house had wasted a huge amount of human and material resources to find it.
After she was cured, she did not think of enjoying her life or her youth but rather the public house's fate. She wanted to help the public house with her own hands.
Siao Qi furrowed her brows and shook her head, "Second eldest sister wants to marry into the Imperial Residence of Prince An."
She knew her second eldest sister's personality: she kept her words. Even Big Brother could not make her change her mind. She will eventually get to do as she wished.
Chu Li said, "Second Lady will eventually need to marry someone. Marrying Prince An is also not bad."
He felt somewhat uncomfortable in his heart.
He knew a little about the few princes of the current Imperial Household. Prince An's reputation had always been good and he was highly praised. His literary talent was extraordinary. He had the potential to be a scholar and he presided at the revision of several ancient books and records before. It was said that he had a gentle character and a very good temper too.
Although he was already 40 years old, he was not considered old. He was considered in the prime of life. Moreover, being older made him more caring so he was a good marriage partner, so to speak.
Chu Li liked the beauty of Siao Shi but he only admired her beauty. He just cared about anything that was related to the one he loved. Also, he had the Scripture of Life and Death to rely on and he was driven by the need to distinguish himself, so he acted as if he was sacrificing himself to save Siao Shi's life in the eyes of others. If he did not have the Scripture of Life and Death, he would not do so.
Although Siao Shi was more beautiful, the one he liked was Siao Qi.
However, when a beauty like Siao Shi, the most beautiful woman of Great Ji, had to marry another man, he still felt somewhat regrettable and uncomfortable. This was a man's nature.
Siao Qi looked at his face quietly, trying to read his mind through his subtle expression, "Towards second eldest sister, are you..."
Chu Li said, "I have no feelings towards Second Lady!"
"Really?" Siao Qi stared into his eyes.
Chu Li laughed, "Second Lady has high standards. Even if I like her, it's useless!"
Siao Qi said plainly, "It seems like you do like her."
Chu Li shrugged and smiled, "Second lady marrying Prince An is not bad too."
"The grudge between the public house and the Imperial Household is hard to explain in words," Siao Qi shook her head and said, "Other houses will not be as peaceful as our public house. It is inevitable that there will be competitions and infighting. Moreover, there are other concubines. She will not be happy."
Chu Li said, "The most important thing is Second Lady's opinion."
"Second eldest sister is stubborn, so she will eventually marry into the Imperial Residence," Siao Qi frowned and sighed, "I'm still worried."
Chu Li smiled and looked at her cool face quietly.
Siao Qi's bright eyes glinted, "Chu Li, if second eldest sister really entered the Imperial Residence of Prince An, you follow her."
Chu Li was stunned momentarily and then laughed despite himself, "My Lady, I'm a man!"
"It does not matter," Siao Qi said, "Imperial Residence is not the Palace. Personal Scribe can follow into the residence...only with you around second eldest sister, I can rest assured."
"My Lady, you" Chu Li frowned.
Siao Qi said, "I will stay in Snow Lunar Pavilion for a few years or even ten years. Even if you are in the public house, it will still be very difficult for us to meet each other."
Chu Li stayed silent.
Siao Qi said, "If not, you follow second eldest sister into the Imperial Residence first and come back when she has gained a firm foothold... she is all alone and she is neither calculating nor crafty. She will be bullied right after she enters the Imperial Residence. I am really worried!"
Chu Li frowned, feeling somewhat reluctant.
Siao Qi said plainly, "Do you want me to beg you?"
"Hai...," Chu Li shook his head and sighed, "Okay, since my Lady commanded, I can only do it."
Siao Qi smiled. It was as if the snow had stopped and the sky cleared up. The whole pagoda brightened up instantly.
Chu Li turned his gaze away with effort, not letting himself make a gaffe, "When will Second Lady be married into the Imperial Residence of Prince An?"
"She had made up her mind. Big brother could not stop her. Presumably, the Imperial Residence of Prince An will receive the news of her recovery," Siao Qi said, "It will not take long before they come and receive her."
"I'm not sure if Second Lady will not agree to my involvement."
"I will persuade second eldest sister."
"My Lady, you don't need help on your side?" Chu Li said, "Being a newcomer in Snow Lunar Pavilion is not easy too."
"Snow Lunar Pavilion's official disciples are all women," Siao Qi said, "You can't help... Young Su Ru will go along with me, just in case there is something, I'll let her find you."
"If the both of you are together ..."
"It does not matter. No one recognized."
Chu Li nodded and did not speak anymore.