Book 1 Chapter 51: Secret exposed! Greater danger!!
On the same day as Bai Yunfei reached Baifeng City.
There were only three people sitting in a spacious hall in the Glacial School at the moment. Obviously the master of this place had already dismissed all of his subordinates and they were discussing important matters.
Sitting in the head position was a middle-aged man with a slightly pale complexion. Even though he was just sitting there expressionlessly, there was a chilling aura about him. Even the temperature of in the entire hall seemed to have dropped somewhat - this man was none other than the headmaster of the Glacial School, Yu Fei.
The man sitting on the left was about forty years old with a calm expression. He was none other than one of the Glacial School's elders, Liu Cheng. And the man sitting on the right, who was slowly telling something to the other two, was surprisingly none other than the head of the Zhang family Zhang Zhenshan!
"... Then that Bai Yunfei fella turned around and ran away without hesitation..."
Seeming to have been talking for quite some time, he heaved a sigh of relief, raised the cup of tea beside him and took a sip. After that he cast a glance at the other two men, who appeared to be somewhat entranced by what he had told them, waiting for their reaction.
After keeping silent for a while, Yu Fei said: "A lowly Soul Warrior was unexpectedly able to escape while being hunted down by you, and was even able to injure you. This... According to what you said, those several soul items on his body are indeed strange. Right, that Glacial Piercer..."
Hearing these words, Zhang Zhenshan turned his right hand over and the Glacial Piercer appeared in his hand. His voice became somewhat solemn, saying: "It was only because of this Glacial Pierce that I gave up continuing to track his whereabouts and immediately returned to out school as quickly as possible to report to you, headmaster."
"Oh? Did you discover something?" Yu Fei asked with raised eyebrows.
"Yes, just take a look, headmaster." Zhang Zhenshan slightly nodded then glanced at a pillar that could only be hugged by two people holding hands in front of him. With a gently flick of his right hand, a streak of blue light shot out and came into contact with that pillar in the blink of an eye. A soft sound was heard and the Glacial Piercer penetrated through the stone pillar at a stroke under the astonished looks in Yu Fei's and Liu Cheng's eyes. Then it whizzed through the air and pierced into the wall behind!
The other two men were dumbfounded for ten something seconds. Yu Fei was the first to react. No longer having that previous apathetic expression, he suddenly stood up with an excited look on his face. In an instant, he had already appeared right in front of that wall. After reaching out his hand and removing the Glacial Piercer, which had almost gone all the way into the wall, he observed it carefully, his eyes filled with disbelief.
"How is this possible?... It's indeed the one I rewarded the Blackwood Stronghold's Han Xiao with two months ago. But how can it be so powerful?"
Seeing that Yu Fei's expression was full of disbelief, Zhang Zhenshan understood what was going on. When he himself had first known that this Glacial Piercer had been changed, he had been like this too. He said: "Headmaster, I already tested it carefully. The Glacial Piercer's damage has been improved by at least 50% compared to before. Besides, this doesn't even really matter. The most inconceivable thing is that when you shoot it out, both its speed and power are at least twice as large as they should be in a normal situation!"
After Yu Fei heard Zhang Zhenshan's words, there was even more disbelief on his face. He looked at the Glacial Piercer in his hand in stupefaction for a long time, seemingly not daring to believe that this was true. Only after he himself tested it several times, piercing through the several stone pillars of the hall, did he finally sit back down in his chair in a somewhat entranced manner.
"Headmaster, the daggers Bai Yunfei used as projectiles are also kind of strange.." Zhang Zhenshan said and at the same time took out two daggers and gave them to a silent Yu Fei. He then sat down to one side, waiting for Yu Fei's reaction.
Only now did Liu Cheng regain his composure. He pondered with a solemn expression for a while and said: "Do you think this is the Crafting School...?"
"Impossible." Seeming to have also considered this question, Zhang Zhenshan shook his head, saying, "Though the Crafting School can reforge soul items and improve their power, I've never heard that it can change soul items to such an extent. Besides, if Bai Yunfei had some strong backing, he wouldn't have been hunted by me like that."
Right at this moment, Yu Fei, who was pondering with his head lowered, suddenly lifted his head and gave orders in a very serious manner: "Look for him!! Mobilize all the forces to look for him!!
"Whatever the means, you must obtain the method for improving the Glacial Piercer!!"
... ... ... ...
In Baifeng City, Bai Yunfei said goodbye to the people of that trade caravan right after entering the city and began to go shopping in the city alone. To avoid attention, he wore that straw hat with torn selvage that he had asked for from the trade caravan all the time. He did not even take it off when buying things lest the shopkeepers saw his appearance clearly.
When he finished shopping, it was already in the evening. He ate some food in a small restaurant then found a relatively ordinary tavern to stay.
"For the moment I haven't noticed anyone suspicious yet. I've also observed this tavern's waiters and owner. They shouldn't be like the people from last time..." Bai Yunfei thought to himself while lying on the bed, "I've prepared all the things I need. For safety, I'll leave this place for Cuiliu City on the border of Qingyun Province tomorrow early in the morning then go into Beiyan Province. At that time I'll be much safer!
"Cuiliu City... I wonder if it's related to that Green Willow School?" (*) At this point, he could not help thinking of the Green Willow School's Qiu Luliu and Chu Yuhe. Then a beautiful figure in light blue clothes appeared in his mind. For the moment, he unexpectedly felt into a trance.
After a long time, Bai Yunfei sat up with a surprised expression. He shook his head with some self-derision and murmured: "What am I thinking about? Inexplicable... Now I'm running for my life! Seizing the time to improve my power and getting out of this Qingyun Province safely are the most important things to do."
In the early morning of the next day, Bai Yunfei woke up from his cultivation. He breathed out gently then got off the bed, did some exercise and sighed discontentedly: "Alas! Without using the Upgrade Technique to speed up my cultivation, my soulforce improves really slow! Too bad now I don't dare to casually use that unconscious state to improve my soulforce..."
He left the tavern, bought several steamed buns for breakfast then headed for the south gate of the city.
After Bai Yunfei had been walking several kilometers in a normal way along main roads and large streets, his expression became more and more unsightly.
"I'm being followed... Damn it! What's going on? How can they always detect me no matter how careful I am?!" Bai Yunfei cursed in his mind. After getting out of the city, he had noticed that there was something unusual. Although the man who was following him had been careful, the perception of a Soul Warrior like Bai Yunfei still allowed him to detect this person very quickly.
"He's following me but I haven't been obstructed by a large number of men. Could it be I'm wrong and he's not a man of the Zhang family? Or they don't have enough men and they know they can't stop me, so they're following me for the time being while waiting for reinforcements before getting into action? No matter who he is, I'd better be careful and lose him as quickly as possible!"
Upon reaching a fork, Bai Yunfei suddenly accelerated and dashed into an alleyway on the right. Moreover, his speed got faster and faster. In almost a few breaths' time, he disappeared at a corner not far up ahead.
The moment Bai Yunfei turned into the alleyway, on the main street, a little man dressed up as an ordinary-looking passerby was slightly dumbfounded. He then frowned and thought in surprise: "He detected me already? No wonder he was able to escape from elder Zhang's hands... Then should I go after him now or not?"
After considering for a while, he shook his head slightly, turned around and went in the other directions: "I followed him waiting for the elders to arrive only because I couldn't take him down. Now that he already noticed me, if I went after him again, I would simply throw away my life. Anyway, I already know his direction to a certain extent so I'll just wait for the elders from the school to come and chase after him themselves!"
After going around that corner, Bai Yunfei hid behind a hillside for a long time, but he did not see anyone go after him. He waited for another while then finally shook his head, turned around and took a trail to continue his journey.
"It's possible that I was oversuspicious... Perhaps he was just an ordinary petty thief..."
Knowing nothing about the situation, Bai Yunfei went for a stroll in front of the Glacial School's entrance just like that. Then he left without incident...
... ... ... ...
The next day, when Zhang Zhenshan and Liu Cheng returned to the latter's house in this Baifeng City together, they received a report from their subordinates - the man they want to find, Bai Yunfei, had arrived in the city in the evening of the day before yesterday then left yesterday early in the morning!
The moment Zhang Zhenshan and Liu Cheng received this news, both of them were somewhat stupefied. A good while later, Zhang Zhenshan gave a cold snort, saying: "That Bai Yunfei fella is too arrogant! He unexpectedly took a stroll right under the nose of our Glacial School!! I'll leave immediately. This time I definitely won't let him get away. I'll make him pay for my son's death with his life!!"
"Wait, brother Zhang!" Liu Cheng pressed on Zhang Zhenshan's shoulder, "Could it be you've forgotten headmaster's order?! This matter is already no longer your own business. It's now related to the future development of the entire school!"
Seeing that almost distorted expression on Zhang Zhenshan's face, Liu Cheng sighed and continued to advise: "Your current state isn't suitable for you to chase after him. If you kill him in a fury, headmaster will hold you responsible and not even I will be able to plead for leniency for you...
"I suggest that you let me handle this matter!" Seeing that Zhang Zhenshan seemed to be gradually calming down, Liu Cheng continued: "You don't have to worry. After obtaining the secret we want, you can do whatever you wish to him!"
Zhang Zhenshan's expression changed repeatedly. In the end he heaved a sigh gently and said: "Alright, I'll listen to you. I won't get into action before we obtain that secret. But what method do you plan to use to deal with him? That man's mental ability is quite exceptional. If you want to capture and force him to reveal it, I'm afraid this won't do..."
"Yeah, the method of capturing and questioning via torture shouldn't be used until the last minute. So, we'll have to trick him... making him reveal the secret of his own accord!" At this point, Liu Cheng felt silent for a while, seemingly pondering over the information about Bai Yunfei.
"When he was in the city, he bought not only the general map of the empire, but also the detailed maps of Qingyun Province, Beiyan Province and Pingchuan Province. So, it's highly probable that his current goal is to go to Beiyan Province first.
"In that case, he's most probably going to... Cuiliu City!"
(*) Cuiliu and Green Willow are the same in Chinese.