Chapter 249: This old fellow would sure like to die
Would he die?
He slowly shut his eyes, his silence frightening. If not for the minute crease of his eyebrows, one might really think he was dead.
"Qi gege, you...hurry and take the antidote!" Mu Linger was crying. Her tears fell as she stuffed mouthful after mouthful of antivenom past Gu Qishao's lips. She just knew that Qi gege wouldn't be able to hold on after being bitten by so many snakes. The fact that he hadn't died down there was a testament to how he'd wrested back his own life. Why did Qi gege have to make enemies with the Duke of Qin? What a stupid thing to do!
Was it for Han Yunxi's sake?
A flash of hatred flitted past Mu Linger's eyes. She'd definitely give Han Yunxi a lesson if they happened to meet!
While Mu Linger was busy feeding medicine, she didn't notice that Gu Qishao's hands weren't idle at all. He silently pressed down on his stomach as if gathering his strength. Before long, he secretly dug out two Pear Blossom Rain Needles from his abdomen. Tang Li had used four needles, of which two had hit their mark. This could be considered very lucky already. His entire body was wracked with pain, blood flowing from his cobra bites and the places where the Pear Blossom Rain Needles had struck. Heaven knows what kind of pain this felt like?
He could only endure.
He gulped down mouthful after mouthful of the antidote, but all of it was stuck in his throat. When Mu Linger wasn't looking, Gu Qishao took the chance to turn around and spit them all out. Mu Linger didn't dare to touch Gu Qishao, much less talk to him, afraid that she'd waste his strength. She carefully kept guard but grew worried when Gu Qishao remained turned away for her for too long. Worried, she looked over, only to see Gu Qishao as he quickly turned back. Finally, Mu Linger stopped her tears long enough to say, "Qi gege, you scared me to death....sobsob..."
"Crybaby!" Gu Qishao's face looked even more wan when he smiled.
Mu Linger was filled with distress as she suddenly threw herself at him with a hug. "Qi gege, don't act like this in future, all right? No matter who it's for, don't be like this! How can you set your life against another's?" Of course she could tell that he was risking it all to kill Long Feiye.
Gu Qishao's lips curved up to laugh at himself as he murmured, "This old fellow would sure like to die...it'd save myself all this trouble."
"Qi gege, what did you say?" Mu Linger didn't hear clearly.
Gu Qishao pushed Mu Linger, but didn't have the strength to move her aside. He helplessly raised his head to look up. "Linger, you're hurting me, let go."
Immediately, Mu Linger released him from her arms. Gu Qishao stared faintly at the entrance to the king cobra then. If it wasn't for Tang Li, and for his fear of revealing too much, then Long Feiye would definitely be doomed to die! Soon he had Mu Linger take out all the poisons hidden in his sleeve and laid them as a trap by the exit to the den. Right now, Long Feiye and Tang Li were still slaughtering the poison cobras. Even if they killed every single one, they shouldn't have any ideas of coming out!
After Mu Linger set up the poisons, Gu Qishao had just about rested enough. Though his body was riddled with injuries and snake bites, he soon recovered his stamina and stood up with his own strength.
"Qi gege, you snatched back your own life. Don't hold out if you can't take it, all right?!" Mu Linger was very worried. She was a pharmacist and knew of medicine, so she was very clear as to Gu Qishao's current condition. Of course, she didn't suspect anything, but thanked Heaven for preserving his life.
"It's fine. Your Qi gege won't collapse so easily," Gu Qishao had regained his old playful smile again.
"You're still holding out! Let's go back, we'll retrace the route from the map!" This was the first time the fearless Mu Linger had felt afraid. Without a map, Heaven knows how many more poison traps were lying in wait for them. A single poison den had left them in this state, but there were a hundred total traps in here. After following the map, they'd only met with this one trap along the way, which meant the same way back should be safe. But Gu Qishao merely picked up the map and tossed it back to her.
"You go back first, just leave the medicine with me."
Though Mu Linger's medicine couldn't completely subdue the poison beast, it could calm him down. Once the Gu Shu calmed down, Gu Qishao was a hundred percent sure that he could take him away.
How could Mu Linger leave first?
She had no interest whatsoever in the Gu Shu, but she'd turned her back on her clan responsibilities to secretly help Gu Qishao just because it was for his sake!
"We'll go together. If you keep on like this, you won't live!" Mu Linger said seriously.
Gu Qishao stuffed the map into her arms before turning to leave, but Mu Linger grabbed onto him. "For better or worse, you should send me back up!"
"Be good, don't fuss. You can get up by yourself," Gu Qishao pushed aside Mu Linger without a trace.
"Hmph! If you want to die here, then I'll keep you company!" An angry Mu Linger tore the map to shreds and scattered them on the ground. She hooked her arm in Gu Qishao's and said boldly, "Let's go!"
But it was right at this moment that a secret door opened from the wall beside them, revealing two figures who walked out one after the other. The arrivals were a man and a woman. The man was tall and dressed in mysterious black robes, his arm wrapped in bandages as if heavily injured. The woman was dressed in white like a fairy elevated from worldly affairs. Their appearance was so sudden that Gu Qishao and Mu Linger had no time to hide, but met them face-on.
"Jun Yixie!" Gu Qishao's pupils narrowed as he immediately recognized the other. Meanwhile, Mu Linger's attention was wholly focused on the white-robed female and the sword in her hand. She looked remarkably ethereal, making it hard to anyone to ignore her.
"It looks like your lordship has arrived right on time." Anyone who saw Gu Qishao would assume he was severely injured. Jun Yixie's lips curved up into a cold smile as he crossed his arms and walked towards Gu Qishao. The white-robed female by his side showed no interest whatsoever, but leaned against a nearby wall to wait. Jun Yixie's aggression made Mu Linger want to speak out, but Gu Qishao only gave her a look and shielded her behind him. Though Mu Linger was worried, she docilely followed his lead as they backed into a corner.
Jun Yixie stopped and said in amusement "Gu Qishao, if your lordship remembers correctly, your poison skills aren't half-bad."
"So what?" Gu Qishao's wound-riddled body, when paired with his stubborn expression, really made for an ingenious sight. If anything, he looked like a helpless yet unyielding hero.
Jun Yixie laughed out loud. "Your lordship can use you to test the hundred different traps. It'll be perfect."
"You wish! Even if I die, I won't let you have the Gu Shu," Gu Qishao was filled with righteousness even as his gaze turned mocking.
"That'll depend on whether or not you have the skills." So speaking, Jun Yixie made to move when Gu Qishao viciously kicked out with his foot. Heaven knows how much internal energy he used, but the force was enough to send Jun Yixie flying until he crashed into a wall with a heavy thump. Immediately after that, he fell to the ground with another loud whump. He stayed crouched with one knee against the ground, a hand supporting himself while the other pressed against his chest. As soon as he lifted his head, it was to spew a mouthful of black blood.
"Aiya, since the Duke of Kang actually underestimated this gentleman's poison skills, it's only natural to give him a taste, right?" Gu Qishao turned back to flash Mu Linger a brilliant smile. Mu Linger was completely at a loss to how Gu Qishao could deliver such a hefty kick. It seemed like he was neither injured nor poisoned at all.
Jun Yixie had suffered a great loss, but he'd never admit it. Instead, he stood up, spat out a few more mouthfuls of black blood, and said coldly, "Indeed, it's extraordinary! You're perfect for clearing the path!" So speaking, he unsheathed the sword on his back, whose chilly edge felt colder than a winter moon.
"Poison Frost Moon Blade!" Mu Linger blurted out. This was a precious sword from ancient times whose fame came from how the blade shone like a cold moon. Its sword awn was sharp enough to kill humans and beasts alike before they ever met its edge. It looked like Jun Yixie had made ample preparations before coming to steal the Gu Shu by bringing such a strong weapon with him.
Only now did Jun Yixie notice Mu Linger. "You're somewhat knowledgeable."
Despite his praise, his movements didn't stop. The Frost Moon blade was raised in the air before it hacked towards Gu Qishao. The sword awn completely shifted the air currents around itself. Gu Qishao pushed aside Mu Linger but didn't dodge himself. The sword awn cut into a large chunk of his shoulder.
Gu Qishao was a man who feared pain, but nobody knew this fact. He drew back the corners of his mouth into a grin and narrowed his eyes, before taking out a weapon of his own. That was none other than a black folding fan. It looked ordinary, but as soon as he opened it, the folds of the fan revealed countless blades. This was a sword fan! He had been planning to use this against the poison beast, but now it was Jun Yixie's turn to have a taste of its strength.
Meanwhile, Jun Yixie had struck with his second blow. Gu Qishao opened up the fan and lifted it above his head to block the blade. Once the sword fan and Frost Moon blade met, there was a melodious clang. Those who were ignorant might assume the two weapons would break, but both sides were unharmed. It was Jun Yixie and Gu Qishao themselves who ended up sporting cuts on their hands from which fresh blood poured.
At first, the two continued to increase the weight behind their weapon. But as time passed, the cuts on their hands grew bigger as a result of the strain. If they kept on, they might die from blood loss instead. It was here that the white-robed female wearing a face veil suddenly rushed forward with her sword.
"Taking advantage of the situation, how despicable!" Mu Linger cursed as she unsheathed her own sword. But before she could even see the woman move, her own weapon had been chopped in half. The masked woman ignored Mu Linger completely before turning to help Jun Yixie.
Jun Yixie and Gu Qishao were both stuck in a deadlock. At this point in time, anyone who helped one side even a tiny bit would be able to claim victory. Without a word, the masked female raised her sword and ruthlessly sliced at Gu Qishao's fan. How could he block the blow? The fan was crushed towards his head, its sword edges almost touching his scalp. The consequences if such a thing happened were too ghastly to contemplate.
"Let go of my Qi gege!"
"Ganging up on someone, you guys are shameless!"
"Let him go!"
Mu Linger waved her broken sword, wanting to duke it out with the masked female. Unfortunately, the white-robed woman was able to ward her off with a single push that sent her far away, keeping her away from Gu Qishao. Despite that, Gu Qishao simply relinquished the sword fan and allowed Jun Yixie and the masked woman's swords to come at him.
"Don't!" Mu Linger cried out as she covered her eyes. She had no time to block them.
Gu Qishao's eyes flickered with icy intent. He could only feel pain, but he wouldn't die. Since things had progressed to this state, he could only reveal his secret to these two before killing them off. Light gleamed off the swords as their edges drew closer. But suddenly, swift and vicious needles flew out from the darkness to aim at Jun Yixie and the masked woman's hands. The two of them hastily evaded the attack, only to hear a familiar voice.
"Jun Yixie, Duanmu Yao, stop right there!"