He arrived at the backyard of the Ren Public House.
The sound of the zither rang brightly, hanging in the air refreshingly. The person playing the zither must be a bold and generous person.
Looking at the Omniscient Mirror, Chu Li saw that there was only Lu Yurong in the backyard. The nine beautiful maids were nowhere to be seen. They must be inside the building, cultivating.
Lu Yurong sat alone at the Pagoda, head lowered to focus on the zither. Underneath the veil was a graceful face of absolute beauty, solemn and dignified, luring people to unravel the secrets it held.
Her temperament fluctuated at times dignified, at times languid, and none who laid eyes on her would not be moved.
Currently, her expression was dignified as she played the zither and had a certain air of a peerless talent.
The sound of the zither came to an abrupt stop. She felt a peculiar gaze and turned around and saw Chu Li.
She quirked her slanted brow and said slowly, "It's you again!"
Chu Li closed fist saluted with a smile, "Lady Lu, I have come to ask for help!"
"What is it?" Lu Yurong said, "I did not cause any trouble for the Yi Public House this time."
Chu Li said, "I would like to borrow some Grandmasters."
"Six, at most," Lu Yurong said lightly, "The Public House should have more than enough Grandmasters. Are you afraid that it is not enough?"
Chu Li nodded his head.
Lu Yurong hummed, "Are you worried about me?"
If he borrowed the people, he could weaken her strength too; it was killing two birds with one stone.
Chu Li smiled, "That's also something to consider, so borrow us Xi Wu and Elder Xi too!"
"Don't you even think about it, Elder Xi?!" Lu Yurong's lips pulled into a thin sneer, "He is one of the pillars of the Ren Public House. Do you think it is that easy for him to leave?"
Chu Li said, "The grand wedding is approaching, you will not able to use them anyway."
"Borrowing Elder Xi is not an impossible task. It depends on what you are willing to offer," Lu Yurong looked at him slyly.
Chu Li muttered, "And what would Lady Lu possibly want?"
"I want Prince An's head. Can you take it for me?" Lu Yurong said lightly.
Chu Li laughed, "If I were to take Prince An's head, the Emperor would take mine. Lady Lu, are you trying to kill me?"
Lu Yurong said slyly, "All right then, I shall not make things difficult for you. You only need to help me do one thing."
"What is it?" Chu Li asked.
Lu Yurong said, "There is a treasure in the Imperial Residence of Prince An. I want you to retrieve it for me."
"Treasure?" Chu Li laughed and said, "What treasure does the Ren Public House not possess?"
Lu Yurong frowned in dissatisfaction, "What I seek is an unusual item. Will you help me or not?"
Chu Li said, "What exactly is Lady Lu talking about?"
"A jade statue," Lu Yurong said, "A jade statue of the Elusive Ninth Heaven Maiden."
Chu Li said in realization, "Could it be that Prince An stole it?"
"Hmph, that despicable fellow!" Lu Yurong grit her teeth, laughing coldly, "If it weren't for the Emperor, I would have killed him a long time ago!"
Chu Li muttered, "What secret does this jade statue hold?"
"You do not need to know about that!" Lu Yurong said coldly.
Chu Li laughed, "If I do not know the secret, I will not know the value. How could I agree then?"
Lu Yurong stared at him resolutely, "The House of High Duke is already at wit's end when it comes to manpower. Will you still be able to procure a professional?!"
Her eyes glittered, sparkling like brilliant jewels, enrapturing people.
Chu Li let out a sigh. The threat was sure to work and smiled, "Let me guess, it has something to do with your martial arts inheritance, doesn't it?"
Lu Yurong's graceful face sank, her eyes turned icy.
Chu Li pretended that he did not notice and shook his head, "Prince An is a man. Why would he want an inheritance from the Elusive Ninth Heaven Maiden?"
"Chu Li, you are quite well-informed!" Lu Yurong said coldly, "However, knowing too much may not be a good thing!"
Chu Li could not help but laugh, "Does Lady Lu wish to kill me? Then again, Lady Lu has always wanted to kill me!"
"Hmph, at least you know!" Lu Yurong scoffed.
Chu Li said, "Once I acquire the jade statue, is Lady Lu not be afraid that I will just take the inheritance?"
"It is just a statue!" Lu Yurong said coldly.
Chu Li said slowly, "I see, in that case, all right, I shall help you retrieve it!"
Lu Yurong let out a small smile, "Good!"
Chu Li said, "About Xi Wu?"
"Elder Xi will help," Lu Yurong said lightly, "But if you try to sabotage us deliberately, do not blame me for acting impolitely!"
Chu Li said, "I want them to help in handling the assassins but I only worry that they do not take the job seriously and deliberately allow the assassins to escape!"
Lu Yurong said coldly, "Then why did you request their help in the first place?!"
Chu Li smiled, "Let us make a gentlemen's agreement then, if those seven are able to capture three assassins, I will present you the jade statue personally!"
"And if you go back on your word?" Lu Ruyong scoffed.
Chu Li said, "What about this, I shall present you the jade statue first and only then you honor your agreement, agreed?"
"You will be able to retrieve it now itself?" Lu Yurong asked.
Chu Li smiled, "Does Lady Lu agree?"
"All right," Lu Yurong said, "If you retrieve it, Elder Xi will be able to accomplish their task too!"
Chu Li nodded, "Then I request that Lady Lu allow them depart first. Before they reach the House of High Duke, I will personally present the jade statue to you!"
"All right!" Lu Yurong said slowly.
"Then I shall take my leave now!" Chu Li close fist saluted.
His figure disappeared immediately after that.
Lu Yurong stared at the place where he stood, deep in thought.
After a long while, she rose lightly and left the backyard to go to the Main Hall of the Ren Public House.
Sitting in the Main Hall, she gave the order in two sentences. Xi Wu and five others appeared quickly.
"My lady," Xi Wu closed fist saluted.
"Elder Xi, the six of you shall depart today for the Yi Public House," Lu Yurong said, "When you arrive, go look for Chu Li."
"To kill Chu Li?" Xi Wu asked hurriedly.
Lu Yurong shook her head, "This time we are helping him."
Xi Wu stared distractedly, looking at Lu Yurong in disbelief.
Lu Yurong said, "Elder Xi, this grand wedding will not be peaceful."
"From what I know, currently all the other Public Houses are very quiet," Xi Wu shook his head, "If we do not act, they will have no reason to act in return. It does concern Prince An after all."
"The other martial art factions will not let this opportunity slip by," Lu Yurong laughed coldly, "At times like this, let us set aside the grudges we have with the Yi Public House and help them for once!"
Xi Wu nodded his head slowly, understanding what Lu Yurong meant.
The Public Houses fought amongst each other but when it came to the martial arts factions, they stood together unified, like coming together to catch a wily thief.
If the reputation of the Yi Public House were to be marred by martial arts factions and lost their prestige and power, the Ren Public House would also suffer damages and the martial arts world will begin to stir.
Lu Yurong said, "When the six of you go there and come across assassins, just capture three of them!"
"Three" Xi Wu laughed, "That is not a problem!"
Lu Yurong said, "I have already struck a deal with Chu Li. He is a careful man by nature and is worried that you will deliberately let the assassins escape so he intentionally set it. We must not go back on our word!"
Xi Wu said firmly, "Rest assured, my Lady, we will not let our guard down! For six people to capture three Grandmasters, there will be no problem at all!"
"Good, then depart now!" Lu Yurong said, "However, you must keep an eye out for that Chu Li's dirty tricks!"
"My Lady, even though Chu Li is full of craft and cunning, he does not seem like a despicable man," Xi Wu said.
Lu Yurong waved her hand, "Leave."
Xi Wu and the other five close fists saluted and left the main hall.
As Lu Yurong sat on the armchair, she pondered when exactly would Chu Li be able to present to her the Elusive Ninth Heaven Maiden jade statue and how he would be able to retrieve it from the Imperial Residence of Prince An.
The security of the Imperial Residence was extremely rigid. She had tried before but could do nothing against it.