Chapter 114: Vigil, waiting for what? Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
Han Yunxi was the type of person who stayed unyieldingly calm and confident even when she was being crushed underfoot. This was because she knew that the people stepping on her would only jeer if she was pathetic instead of pitying her and showing mercy if she begged.
She didn't know why her young kidnapper disdained her so strongly, but she wouldn't be looked down upon.
"Who told you I'm a Poison Human?" the young assassin hurriedly asked. Her face was calm, but not her heart. After all, the study of poison arts wasn't a legitimate path within Cloud Realm Continent. Very few people took the pains to learn, and knowledge about poison nurturers amongst them was even rarer. Even if Han Yunxi wasn't the useless trash of the Han Family, she still shouldn't have any idea. The Han Clan wasn't proficient in poisons.
Did she really underestimate this woman's skills?
Han Yunxi's lips curled up in ridicule as she measured up the female kidnapper, then her fellow assassin companion. "It's not as if it's a big deal. Anyone with eyes could tell that you're both Poison Humans." As she spoke, Han Yunxi pointed to the other woman, who should be the real high-level master here.
"So what? You think a trifling poison can harm me? What a wild idea!" the female kidnapper said while shooting another glance at her palm. This action had long betrayed her.
If she really didn't care, why did she keep looking at her hand?
But Han Yunxi disregarded her to smile at the other assassin. "In an hour she'll die from the poison. How's that, want to make a bet?"
"You!" the female kidnapper gave up all pretense of civility and raised her foot for a kick. Han Yunxi wanted to dodge but couldn't make it in time, and felt the blow connect with her shoulder, sending her sprawling on the ground.
This girl was a seasoned pro with a strong kick. She was only a weak woman who lacked even the strength to truss a chicken beyond her poison skills. Yet even as she lay on the ground, her eyes remained icily arrogant and dignified. Even though she was turning up her face to see them, she left the impression that she was gazing down at them from a distance. This made the female kidnapper very uncomfortable and even a little afraid. She raised her foot again, stopping just above Han Yunxi's face.
"What did you poison me with?" she said threateningly. "Speak, or else I'll ruin your face!"
"You don't have the right to threaten me. Set your foot aside or else I won't give you the antidote. What I say, I'll definitely do!" Han Yunxi looked askance at her, voice cold. An impressive seriousness emanated from her entire being.
The female kidnapper was both a poisons master and a Poison Human, but she couldn't perceive any poison from the spot on her palm. Still, looking at the imperious Han Yunxi, she couldn't help but feel timid. An hour wasn't a long time, but she didn't know all the poisons that existed in the world.
Her foot stayed in the air. She couldn't stomp on Han Yunxi's face, but neither could she set it down. Already, the kidnapper regretted getting poisoned so easily. She was the one who kidnapped this person, but that person had actually poisoned her. If master found out, wouldn't he dislike her even more?
At this, the other woman strode over and kicked her foot aside, finally giving her an excuse to back off. Compared to the kidnapper, this black-robed woman was much more steady and staid. She lifted the younger girl's hand for a closer look. Han Yunxi watched them both as she rubbed her shoulder and sat back up. She'd gotten such a good chance to poison her that of course she'd taken it. It was also a seldom-seen poison that none but the highest of experts would recognize. If the other woman couldn't tell what it was either, then she'd have a counter against them.
Yet not too long later, the older woman looked over with a mild tone. "Han Yunxi, this is a hypertoxic poison made from the Black Widow and Seven-Pace Vipers, called Black Seventh."
Han Yunxi's gaze darkened in surprise. This woman's poison skills were better than she expected. Was she the one who prepared the Ten-Thousand Snake Poison? What was her relationship to Han Ruoxue and Third Madame Li? Master and subordinate? Or was she actually...
If that was the case, a frightening thought rose in Han Yunxi's head, causing her to break out into a cold sweat.
"I'm not wrong, aren't I? The victim won't show any signs of poisoning until they're dead," the woman continued.
Only then did Han Yunxi recover her wits. Though she didn't want to admit it, she still had to give her a thumbs up. "Formidable!"
Both Han Yunxi and the woman were very calm, but the young kidnapper wasn't. She suddenly wrestled her hand free from the older woman and reached towards Han Yunxi in rage. "Give me the antidote!"
Though she didn't recognize Black Seventh, she heard of it before. This was a very particular poison whose antidote came from the poison itself. For every batch of Black Seventh, there was only one batch of antidote, so one would typically carry along the poison and antidote together. In other words, aside from the poison master who created that batch of Black Seventh, no one else would have the antidote.
Han Yunxi looked harmless as she smiled. "You can have the antidote. But bring me back the same way you brought me here. An hour should be enough for that."
"You wish! Even if I die, I'll bury you alive with me!" the female kidnapper's gaze turned venomous. She hated being threatened like this. But Han Yunxi intended to make her angry and just laughed.
"If you want to die, I won't stop you. Your master must have had you kidnap me for a reason. Why would they let me die?"
She knew there had to be someone else above these two people, someone terrifying enough to raise poison nurturers.
"You!" the female kidnapper grew irascible and raised her hand again. But this time, the other woman immediately grabbed her by the hand.
"Enough. Go back and report first, master will definitely have antidote for Black Seventh," she said unhappily.
"I won't! If she doesn't give me the antidote today, I definitely won't let her off!" the female kidnapper raged, breaking free from the other woman's grasp. Master had told them to kidnap Han Yunxi for two reasons. One was because Han Yunxi was investigating Mu Qingwu's poisoning, two was because master was interested in Han Yunxi's poison skills and wanted to take her in and use her. All these years, her own poison skills hadn't improved. Instead, her technique had dropped further and further away from the older woman until her master disliked her intensely. It was very possible that he'd eventually replace her position with someone else. Once that happened, she'd be used for experiments instead. Truthfully speaking, master had been trying to make a Poison Corpse over the past years. If she went to asked master empty-handed for the antidote to Black Seventh, then master would be even more disappointed in her. That wouldn't be any different from digging her own grave.
No, she couldn't let that happen!
"Heisha, the entire mountain has been surrounded. Now isn't the time for you to cause trouble," the black-robed woman lowered her voice in reminder, sounding very displeased.
"I don't care! I want the antidote!" Heisha spoke, ignoring all the ominous warnings to draw her sword.
Not expecting this, Han Yunxi hastily backed away. She never thought that Heisha would really make a move. From what she understood, Northern Li's spies were a tightly organized group that were strictly disciplined. It wasn't very possible for them to violate a superior's orders. Why did this girl hate her so much?
The older woman immediately caught up and hit the girl's sword with a clang, but the girl only brushed her aside as easy as turning over her hand. The woman tried again, but the girl easily deflected her sword and knocked it to the ground. The black-robed woman might have better poison skills, but the female kidnapper had far better martial arts. She took two to three steps and stopped before Han Yunxi, resting the blade against her throat.
"Antidote!" she snarled.
Han Yunxi didn't want to give it up. This was her one chance and only counter, considering she had no idea why they'd kidnapped her.
"Are you handing it over or not?" Heisha said sternly. She pressed down harder until the blade pierced Han Yunxi's skin.
Han Yunxi was originally open to persuasion and wanted to hesitate, but now her eyebrows furrowed as she retort, "I won't!"
Heisha's eyes narrowed into slits as she emanated a dangerous aura. Because her hand was holding the sword too tightly, the entire blade began to tremble. Han Yunxi narrowed her eyes as well to stare back. The two of them engaged in a battle of wills as the atmosphere turned tense.
"Heisha, think it over clearly. Are you going to the master with your head bowed, or will you die here?! You only have an hour's worth of time!" the black-robed Qingyi reminded her, her calm stirred into agitation.
Heisha's hands turned numb as she wavered. But right at this moment, Han Yunxi unexpectedly moved forward so that the blade sank in even deeper, leaving a stream of blood in her wake. The irresolute Heisha immediately withdrew her sword, breaking out into a cold sweat from fear. "Han Yunxi, you're insane!"
"If you have the guts, then kill me! Otherwise, beat it!" Han Yunxi said coldly.
"You!" Heisha was speechless. She admitted that she had completely lost even before her master could subdue Han Yunxi. "Han Yunxi, you got me!"
Sheathing her sword, Heisha bore her unresigned face as she turned to leave, disappearing from the cave opening. Han Yunxi took out some gauze to press against her neck. Though she managed to buy back a breath, it was a shame that her counter was useless now. She never expected their master to be so close.
If they could meet him within an hour, it meant that he was nearby. Since that was the case, why didn't they meet up now? What was the point of kidnapping her? And how far were they from the Celestial Fragrance tea plantation anyways? Long Feiye should've found out that she'd been kidnapped, right? Would her save her? Or...
Fine, she knew herself that this was Long Feiye's chance to get rid of his arranged marriage Qin Wangfei.
Seeing Han Yunxi calmly treating her wound, Qingyi's eyes flashed with admiration. No wonder master would kidnap this Qin Wangfei without regard to the consequences. Compared to Heisha, this girl was far more outstanding.
Han Yunxi slowly finished taking care of her injury before looking towards the woman with a cold question. "Speak, what honorable business did you invite me here for?"
Hearing her words, Qingyi couldn't help but laugh. "Han Yunxi, where did you learn your poisons from?"
"If you want to talk about this with me, why don't we go back to the Celestial Fragrance Teashop? We can speak at our leisure there," Han Yunxi said simply.
"You're very intelligent," Qingyi wasn't sneering at her, but affirming her skills.
"Did you administer the Ten-Thousand Snake Poison?" Han Yunxi took the chance to ask.
Qingyi didn't reply, but walked towards the exit of the cave. Han Yunxi immediately followed, still asking, "How many more people have you guys hidden in Tianning?"
But Qingyi was extremely tight-lipped and didn't reply. Han Yunxi was going to say more when two black-robed figures walked in from the exit to block her.
"You're waiting for someone? Your master?" Han Yunxi asked.
Qingyi not only refused to answer, but commanded, "Tie her up and toss her inside."
Compared to Qingyi, Han Yunxi would've preferred that Heisha had stayed behind instead. This woman was completely airtight. She couldn't get any information from her questioning, much less find a chance to escape. Quickly, her hands were tied behind her back by a rope looped around her neck. Then she was tossed deep inside the cave.
What was Qingyi waiting for?
 Heisha () - possibly a code name. Hei means black, Sha meants to 'stop, halt, tighten' It's also another form of Sha (), or to kill.
 Qingyi () - literally "black clothing," a possible (literal) codename for the black-robed woman.