Chapter 292: Impending tempest
Long Feiye wore a frigid expression as he took vigorous strides forward, forcing Wang Ruochen and Wang Shuchen to jog into order to keep up. The two brothers both knew that their father was good friends with Long Feiye, but even highly regarded sons like themselves had never had a chance to meet with this ice-cold duke. This could count as their first meeting.
If they could gain Long Feiye's support, they'd definitely win the struggle to be next clan head. Wang Ruochen ran along as he tried to flatter their guest. "Your Highness Duke of Qin, that squirrel must have formidable origins, right?"
Long Feiye didn't reply.
"Your Highness, does that squirrel usually feed on medicine?" Wang Shuchen asked next.
Long Feiye still kept silent.
Wang Ruochen felt a bit embarrassed before he gave an awkward laugh. "Heheh, it's probably only Your Highness Duke of Qin who can afford to raise such a plaything."
All right. Truthfully speaking, Long Feiye wasn't even listening to them. Wang Ruochen hesitated before he said, "Your Highness, Western Zhou's Chu Clan's Chu Qingge is waiting for you in the guest rooms."
Long Feiye didn't even look at him, much less answer. Wang Ruochen felt unsatisfied, so he simply brought up Wang Gong instead. "Your Highness Duke of Qin, my father's rather interested in this creature as well. He specifically told us brothers to treat it well."
Unfortunately, Long Feiye only treated him as air. Finally, Wang Ruochen could only shut his mouth in the face of Long Feiye's callous profile. When this reticent man wanted to ignore people, he wouldn't give anyone face. Very soon, the two Wang brothers brought Long Feiye to a counter that specifically sold Snow Domain's famous and precious medicinal ingredients. Long Feiye saw Lil Thing sitting in the pile of medicinal ingredients at first glance. Currently, Lil Thing had eaten itself into a round ball. It couldn't even lift its stomach, which drooped down heavily. The white fur that stuck up all over its body made it resembled a living furball. It was probably stuffed by now, because it simply sat there huffing for breath without noticing the people who'd came inside.
When it was like this, it really did look cute. The two Wang brothers even chuckled at the sight. However, Long Feiye and his ten thousand years of paralyzed facial muscles didn't laugh. His eyes looked coldly at Lil Thing, for he'd never been interested in cute animals. Even if it was Han Yunxi here now, acting cute in place of Lil Thing, he still wouldn't smile. With an icy look, he inspected Lil Thing before demanding, "Where's the gold card?"
Lil Thing was sitting on the gold card beneath its butt!
"This one will get it right away!" Wang Shuchen hurried forward. One hand plucked up Lil Thing, while the other grabbed the gold card. Because his body was blocking the view, Lil Thing had the bad luck to miss spotting Long Feiye. Actually, Lil Thing was usually very alert. Usually, it would've noticed the different atmosphere in the room, but it had already determined that this place was safe, since it was only Wang Shuchen that dared to approach it. Lil Thing allowed Wang Shuchen to pick it up as its fur settled down. It drew back the corners of its mouth into a grin, drunken with food to the point that its heart was full of satisfaction. Wang Shuchen was planning to put Lil Thing back after getting the gold card. But after some hesitation, he held onto the squirrel and handed both it and the gold card to Long Feiye.
Before Wang Shuchen could finish, Lil Thing suddenly let out a chee of alarm. Its fur stuck on end once again into sharper spikes than before! Heavens! Who did it just see?!
It was stunned! Wang Ruochen and Wang Shuchen were both astonished by Lil Thing's cry. All the sounds that Lil Thing made before were one of happiness and pride, but now it sounded like a pig being sent to the slaughter. Long Feiye took the gold card as soon as he saw it. After making sure it was the one he gave Han Yunxi, he looked coldly at Lil Thing. Still, he didn't move to take it because he thought it was dirty. Lil Thing, however, was certain that Long Feiye was going to grab it. It struggled free from Wang Shuchen's grasp and scurried far away before running without a second look back.
If this little creature was here, then Han Yunxi had to be nearby as well. Long Feiye was going to order his guards to conduct a secret search until he saw Lil Thing running away. Without another word, he chased after it out the doors. Wang Ruochen and Wang Shuchen exchanged glances, neither of them knowing what to say.
"Regarding Chu Qingge..." Wang Ruochen felt vexed. Chu Qingge wasn't someone easy to deal with.
Wang Shuchen thought it over before he sighed. "Let her wait for now."
Chu Qingge would definitely wait for Long Feiye, but it wasn't certain whether he would return.
When Lil Thing saw Long Feiye chasing after it, it was scared out of its wits. Could it be that the gold card didn't belong to master, but to this man? Had this man discovered how much it spent in the Association? It didn't understand why it dreaded this man, but right now all it wanted to do was to run back to its master and seek refuge in her arms. As soon as Lil Thing left the Medical Materials Association, it headed for the inn with his pursuer hot on his heels. Long Feiye followed Lil Thing as it darted this way and that, his large cloak fluttering in the wind as it revealed flashes of his nimble, agile body. Swift and fierce, domineering and quick, his running posture was already a sight to behold.
Lil Thing could usually run very fast, but it'd eaten too much this time. It was really, really scared. What would happen if Long Feiye caught up? The aura behind it was so fierce!
In contrast, Long Feiye wasn't really chasing him at full strength. He purposely kept a distance between them. If he caught this creature early, who would lead him to find that woman, then? Very quickly, the chaser and the chased reached the inn where Han Yunxi and Gu Qishao were staying. Lil Thing darted into the room before it realized something was wrong. Master had left! Meanwhile, Long Feiye followed it to the window before coldly surveying his surroundings. Immediately, he left orders for the guards who had followed him in secret.
"Go ask if she's traveling with someone else."
If Han Yunxi had a companion, they'd definitely rent the room next to hers as well. She'd definitely need help to avoid him and silently hide in Medicine City.
Lil Thing didn't dawdle for long in the room. When it saw Long Feiye blocking the window, it burst through the door of the room and started running for its life. Its nose struggled to sniff the air until it caught its master's scent, then chased after it in a different location. As before, Long Feiye maintained his distance while chasing after Lil Thing, his expression turning colder and colder.
Han Yunxi, Medicine City's full of bounty posters. You saw them, yet you still dare to hide away!
How could Han Yunxi know that an impending tempest was heading her way? Currently, she and Gu Qishao were still in the bamboo house behind the Mu Clan's courtyards. Han Yunxi did a standard examination of Mute Granny before her face lost all its smiles. Mute Granny's ears and throat were fine to begin with. She was a normal person who had lost her hearing and ability to speak because someone had poisoned her. Her vocal chords had developed cysts because of the toxin, affecting her ability to make sounds. Right now, they were still swollen. Meanwhile, the insides of her ears was suffering from poison inflammation so severe that they'd developed ulcers, thus affecting her ability to hear. If this continued, in a few years Mute Granny wouldn't just be deaf and mute, but tormented daily with pain from her throat and ears.
Who did such a venomous deed?!
Gu Qishao felt a little unwell at Han Yunxi's unpleasant expression. "How is it, have you figured it out?"
"It's Broomcorn Millet Poison. She's been poisoned for too long, so it's very hard to treat," Han Yunxi said thinly. The detox system had records of its antidote, but not its ingredients. Moreover, the three ingredients needed for the antidote were seldom available. Even Han Yunxi had never seen them despite living for so many years. Assuming they could make the antidote and cure the poison, Han Yunxi still couldn't guarantee that Mute Granny would make a full recovery. After all, she'd been poisoned for a long time.
"Broomcorn Millet Poison..." Gu Qishao stroked his chin in thought. This was his first time hearing of such a poison.
"Let's take her away first. It'll take some time to cure this poison," Han Yunxi said seriously. Once again, she wanted to take down the painting on the wall, but Mute Granny kept shaking her head. She didn't want to leave this place. She did her best to push Han Yunxi and Gu Qishao out the door, especially Han Yunxi. Her agitation showed that she wanted her to leave quickly.
Mu Xin had an adulterous affair with the remnants of the Poison Sect, something that the Mu Clan couldn't accept. The Mu Clan should have destroyed all evidence of the deed, but why did they keep Mute Granny around to guard Mu Xin's old things? Han Yunxi wasn't an idiot. She could tell that Mute Granny had reasons for insisting that they leave. Still, she had to cure Mute Granny before she could understand anything, so Mute Granny needed to leave with them.
This wasn't a place where one could dawdle, after all. Han Yunxi signaled Gu Qishao with her eyes, and he immediately understood her meaning. He walked to Mute Granny's side and struck her unconscious, before lifting her onto his shoulders. Although this bewitching man had looks to rival a woman's, he was definitely the type to conceal his strength. Han Yunxi gave him a thumbs up when she saw his strong arms. Soon after that, she rolled up the painting from the wall and packed it up in her bag.
Gu Qishao grinned. "Poison lass, I can carry you too."
Han Yunxi's smile turned false. "Are we leaving or not?"
"Where to?" Gu Qishao wanted to know.
"Let's talk it over in the inn first. I need a quiet place to expel her poisons," Han Yunxi said seriously. Since there was no way to make the antidote at the moment, she could get rid of as much poison as she could through expelling them first. That would reduce some of its harmful effects. Gu Qishao nodded as he grabbed Han Yunxi by the shoulder. But they'd hardly left the doors when a group of black-robed assassins flew out from four directions to surround the house! Their leader floated to land in front of Han Yunxi and the rest, a short man with an ape-like chin and thin lips. At one glance, one could tell he was a meticulous, detail-oriented type. Han Yunxi had seen this man in the Medicine Forest before as Jun Yixie's companion. He was the head of the Mu Clan, Mu Yingdong!1 She never expected this old man had such hidden depths. He even knew martial arts.
"After waiting for so long, I never thought it'd be Qin Wangfei! Truly, it's unexpected!" Mu Yingdong said with a queer tone of voice. Mu Yingdong hadn't recognized Han Yunxi in the Medicine Forest last time because she'd been concealing her face. However, Long Feiye's bounty posters had imprinted Han Yunxi's face into the memories of everyone across the continent. Gu Qishao's narrowed eyes revealed traces of killing intent at Mu Yingdong's words. Without a doubt, the man had been lying in ambush for a long time.
"Gu Qishao, you've fallen into their trap," Han Yunxi said coldly.
1. Mu Yingdong () - Yingdong can mean "hero of the east."