Chu Li made his way back to the Yi Public House in the evening glow.
On the way back, he was studying the Seven Forms of Godly Knife. He wanted to morph the Seven Forms of Godly Knife, turning it into a form of swordplay.
The Seven Forms of Godly Knife was extremely powerful but it was a waste that it could only be used when he was Du Feng.
The swordsmanship that he learned was quite strong too but none of them can surpass the Seven Forms of Godly Knife.
After more than ten days of research, there were visible results. However, it was too rushed, resulting in its power a notch below the Seven Forms of Godly Knife. He would have to further refine it in the future.
Upon seeing the great gates of the Public House and the bold and impressive guardian lions, he felt a sense of welcome familiarity as if he had finally returned home.
He entered the Public House and proceeded to the Glory's Will Courtyard on a boat.
The Glory Will's Courtyard was covered in the color of roses. Xue Ling was cultivating, dressed in a neat white outfit. She quickly turned her head when she heard a noise and overcame with joy when she saw it was Chu Li. "Master!"
Chu Li smiled as he briefly sized her up.
She looked even more brilliant and beautiful. Her cultivation skill had considerably deepened and it seemed like she did not slack off in cultivating.
Xue Ling approached him and wrapped her hand around his arm. A pleasant aroma wafted to Chu Li's nose. "Why did you come back so late?"
Chu Li smiled as he sat down in the main hall.
Xue Ling quickly prepared some tea from young tea leaves, serving it to Chu Li with both hands. She stared at him with bright, round eyes. "Where did you go, Master?"
"I simply wandered around the Green Hill Road," Chu Li sipped his tea.
"The Green Hill Road… If so, did you meet the White-robed Chief?" Xue Ling smiled.
She took a glance at Chu Li's white robe as she said that.
"Oh--? Even you've heard about the White-robed Chief?" asked Chu Li.
"I heard about it from the New Moon Brothel," Xue Ling said, "It was said that this White-robed Chief is really great. He kills as if he was just mowing the grass."
She took a second glance at Chu Li.
When she first heard the news, she had already felt that it was her own Master.
Now that she saw Chu Li's white robe, she was even more suspicious.
"Hmm, I've heard about it," said Chu Li.
"Master, it's you, isn't it?" asked Xue Ling quickly.
Chu Li remained silent, raising his teacup.
Xue Ling raised her hand hastily and vowed, "I will never tell anyone about it!"
"... Alright, it's me," Chu Li nodded as he placed the teacup down.
"No wonder!" Xue Ling pursed her lips and smiled, "Did Master get to meet Lu Yurong? It's said that she fell for the White-robed Chief at first sight!"
"Hmm, I met her."
"Is she really pretty?"
Chu Li smiled, "You do not care about how well-trained she is in martial arts but enquired about her beauty instead?"
"Everyone says that she is pretty, not inferior to Lady Siao Shi's beauty," said Xue Ling. "But not many people have actually seen her, so there's a heated argument over it."
"What a leisurely bunch," said Chu Li in an unpleasant tone.
"Master, you haven't told me if she's pretty," said Xue Ling.
"I guess she is."
"In comparison to Lady Siao Shi?"
"Not too far off."
"Who looks better?"
"They both have their own merits, I can't make a conclusion," said Chu Li, waving his hands. "Alright, alright, let's get into serious business."
"Serious business…" Xue Ling bit her tongue.
Chu Li said in an angry tone, "Go on!"
Xue Ling said carefully, "Promise me that you won't be angry if I tell you, Master!"
"If that's the case, I'm definitely going to get angry, tell me now!" huffed Chu Li.
Xue Ling sighed, "Brother Jiang Kuai is hurt."
"He definitely knows how to run if he can't win. Did he meet someone powerful?" asked Chu Li.
Jiang Kuai had the Spirit Blessing Pill with him. He could run if he could not win a fight. Now that he learned a secret skill that triggered one's potential, he could have just consumed a Spirit Blessing Pill after slipping away.
Chu Li was reassured because it was nearly impossible for him to be in a life-threatening situation.
Since Xue Ling only said that he was hurt, Chu Li wasn't too worried about it.
"A new High Official arrived at the Public House when you were gone, Master."
"A Grandmaster?" said Chu Li.
Xue Ling nodded slowly, "His name is Jing Zhixue. He seems bright and friendly, everyone seems to like him."
"He injured Brother Jiang?"
"I think this Jing person is a total sham!" Xue Ling's mouth twitched, "In front of a huge audience, he said that you didn't deserve such a high position at such a young age and that is because Lady Siao Qi trusts you too much."
"So Brother Jiang wasn't happy to hear that and decided to pick a fight?" Chu Li furrowed his eyebrows and asked, "Was it inside or outside the Public House?"
"It was in the New Moon Brothel," said Xue Ling.
Chu Li scoffed, "That's quite interesting. He hurt Brother Jiang?"
"He gave Brother Jiang a big slap in the face and sent two of his teeth flying," Her face held a pitied expression, "The injury was not serious but it was vexing to be slapped in the face by someone so much younger. Even I felt mad for Brother Jiang!"
Chu Li did not say a word. He was trying to work out the entire scenario in his mind and figured out the motive behind the actions.
He had a wide reputation. But to make such huge leaps in his position, it was indeed easy to earn the jealousy of others.
Those who were poorly trained in martial art skills or with lowly positions could only keep their jealousy in check, or mutter under their breaths at most. He would not even bother those people.
It was difficult for Grandmasters not to be jealous but they had eyes to see his contributions. Furthermore, a High Official's position is supreme from the others. They were not involved in any beneficial trades and had no conflicts with him. With his bright future, it would be beneficial for them to befriend him.
For this new High Official to voice such an opinion, he must be young and impetuous, unconvinced of Chu Li's reputation.
But none of those who became a Grandmaster was dumb. He should not be so reckless or be in a hurry to reap the glory.
"How did the Public House settle this?"
"Jing Zhixue had his salary cut for a month as punishment," Xue Ling's mouth twitched, "It's barely even a punishment!"
"Over six thousand taels of silvers, it is not a small amount."
"A High Official is not desperate for money!" said Xue Ling bitterly, "Master Siao Tieying is clearly being unfair!"
"Brother Jiang was compensated with the six thousand taels, right?"
"Brother Jiang is not in need of money too!" Xue Ling scoffed.
"Let me pay a visit to Brother Jiang then," said Chu Li.
"Are you sure you want to go?" Xue Ling was hesitant, "The incident was quite embarrassing. If Master visits him, Brother Jiang will feel even more ashamed."
"Being beaten up because of his lacking skill? What is there to be embarrassed about?" Chu Li stood up.
He had his fair share of being beaten up and injured. He did not think much of it.
"Alright then," Xue Ling followed along feebly.
At Jiang Kuai's courtyard, two people sat under the pagoda.
Xue Ling served tea to the two and entered the house to chat with Su Yuting.
A leisure wind blew, the bamboo in front of the pagoda whistled to the wind. They were green and fresh, overflowing with vigor.
Chu Li placed down his teacup and sighed, "I am sorry to have you involved."
The injury on Jiang Kuai's face had recovered.
"It was my fault that I paled in skill. I did not think that he would dare to make a move as well," Jiang Kuai waved his hand, flashing a bitter smile, "I failed miserably at such an easy task!"
"He's not here to make peace…" said Chu Li as he shook his head.
Jiang Kuai was startled and said hesitantly, "Brother Chu, are you saying that he is aiming for you?"
"Most likely," Chu Li took his cup and took a sip. He smiled, "Even if he isn't, I'll assume he is!"
Jiang Kuai broke into a smile, "It was just a small grudge, is there really a need for such a big reaction? What do you think Master Siao Tieying will take of this? He does not forgive easily!"
"There is no need to worry about that," said Chu Li, "Brother Jiang, I'm going to enter the Imperial Residence of Prince An with Lady Siao Shi. I need someone that I can trust to help me over there."
Jiang Kuai muttered to himself for a while and glanced into the house.
Chu Li chuckled, "Right, you should discuss this with Mrs Jiang and listen to what she has to say."
"If I'm alone, I would follow you without hesitation," Jiang Kuai felt sorry.
"If Brother Jiang comes, Mrs Jiang should not follow immediately."
Jiang Kuai's expression turned serious, "Is it that dangerous?"
"It's never wrong to assume the worst," answered Chu Li.
"Then I will go with you," said Jiang Kuai, "I am just worried that Su Yuting will not be used to it there. If she stays here, then there is no trouble."
Chu Li clasped his hands and smiled, "With Brother Jiang's help, things cannot get any better!"
The two then bantered for a while.
A sound of a door knock came from the outside. Lin Quan was standing outside. He said that Master Siao Tieying had caught wind of Chu Li's return and had prepared a feast to welcome him back.
Chu Li bid farewell to Jiang Kuai and returned for a change of clothes. He then joined Lin Quan and proceeded to the Iron Eagle Island.
The moment he stepped into the main hall, he saw a husky young man sitting at the side of the round table.