Chapter 355: Off Guard
Translator: Irene Editor: X/TYZ
Chapter 355 - Off Guard
Ling Xiao's guards had not expected Ai Hui to initiate an attack. They were distracted by his question, and before they could even react, the sword rays suddenly came toward them like balls of splendid fireworks that exploded right beneath their eyelids.
Caught off guard, they were bedazzled.
Alarmed cries mixed in with curses as the guards hurried to display their strongest defensive moves. A light screen appeared in front of some, while others used weapons and stood before Ling Xiao.
No one withdrew. Behind them was their young master.
The Ling residence's rules were strict. Severe punishments awaited those who failed to protect their young master.
Amid the dazzling sword rays, a pair of eyes remained still, and the hands holding the Silverfold Plum were steady and accurate. Following the sword momentum, Ai Hui hunched over like a stealthily-moving black cat under the night sky, not making the slightest sound.
Moves with flourishing and blinding brilliance were mostly illusory and empty, whereas the simple, subtle, and inconspicuous moves were mostly the real deal.
Ai Hui's sword rays belonged to the latter group.
Ai Hui, who rushed forward, was like a tiger invading a flock of sheep. It extended its sharp claws and bared its fangs. Not only could the Star Reaper Gloves increase his agility 10 fold, it also significantly increased his ability to mobilize elemental energy.
His speed of attack was twice as fast as usual, and taking his realm into consideration, such an increase was a qualitative leap.
With a tremble of the Silverfold Plum and like the meandering of lightning, [Six Moons] was unleashed!
Six palm-sized, arched sword rays sprayed out swiftly from the tip of the sword.
With a turn of his wrist, the sword hilt rotated.
The Silverfold Plum rotated like a clock hand as the six arched sword rays seemed to be pulled in circles by an invisible thread.
Ai Hui's new understanding of the [Big Dipper]!
The guards felt a cooling sensation behind their necks as the sharp sword consciousness penetrated their skin, causing their bodies to turn rigid.
There was a palm-sized sword ray sticking behind every guard's neck.
Their faces were ashen as they stood motionless. The piercing sword consciousness made their hair stand on end. They had no doubt that with any slight movement on their part, the sword rays would slice and separate their necks from their heads.
No one had clearly seen what just happened.
Circumstances were reversed in the blink of an eye.
Ling Xiao was dumbstruck and had not regained his senses.
Fu Sisi, too, was still in a daze. Her mouth was slightly open, and she had on a look of disbelief.
She knew that Chu Zhaoyang's abilities were decent, otherwise he would not have gotten into Madam Ye's good books. It was not surprising for him to defeat Gui Hu and Su Huaijun as well. How could he become a teacher if he could not even beat his students?
Those without outstanding abilities would never have the right to teach in aristocratic families.
Yet, she never would have thought that the conflict would come to an end this quickly. The guards by Ling Xiao's side were not nobodies. Since young, Ling Xiao had been arrogant and despotic, often causing trouble. Afraid for his safety, Madam Ling assigned guards to protect him. While they were not Masters, they were extremely capable.
Ling Xiao, who finally regained his senses, turned pale. The Chu Zhaoyang in front of him was like a completely different person.
There was even a faint smile hanging by his lips, but there was no warmth in that smile. What gave him palpitations was the fact that Chu Zhaoyang emitted a dangerous aura.
This was an extremely dangerous fellow.
Composing himself, Ling Xiao spoke up, "Who exactly are you?"
"Chu Zhaoyang," Ai Hui answered with his usual expression.
What Ling Xiao saw, however, was sarcasm and mockery. Being rather shrewd, he calmed down, saying, "Such good skills. Unlike a teacher."
Ai Hui removed his sword and the arched rays behind the guards' necks dissipated into the air. He said with all smiles, "I teach swordsmanship in the Ye residence."
Ling Xiao's pupils shrank and many things started to add up. He gave Fu Sisi a look before saying, "No wonder she's always going to the Ye residence. It's because of you. But even the Ye residence won't be able to defend you for starting a fight with me."
Ai Hui was not mad. He replied without thinking, "Perhaps I will become a master swordsman someday? Hey, you got to think about it. I must have something in me or why would Sisi follow me around so loyally?"
Ling Xiao's facial expression turned slightly sour. What Chu Zhaoyang had just said hit him right where it counted.
According to his understanding of Fu Sisi, she definitely would not fall for an incapable person. If Chu Zhaoyang really was gifted, things would be different.
A young, talented, and loyal man marrying into the Fu family would give the weakening family a new lease on hope.
Plus, he was a teacher in the Ye residence and had Madam Ye and the Great Elder's support. While Ling Xiao had always been proud of his own family, he had nothing to boast about in front of the Great Elder.
Similarly, even a Master would not count for anything in front of the Ling residence.
The most important thing was to figure out if this was the Great Elder's intention!
If so, he would have to reevaluate everything. Otherwise, he would just have to get rid of Chu Zhaoyang and the problem would easily be solved. He had to find out who the Ling residence was really facing in order to take decisive action. Dragging this matter any longer might lead to more unpredictable changes.
"If that's the case, we have to fight fair." Ling Xiao smiled generously. "My love for Fu Sisi is genuine, so how can I give up halfway? I believe she will make the right decision."
Finishing his words with a smile on his face, he gave them a slight bow before leading his guards away.
About 20 meters away from the shop, Ling Xiao's smile vanished as he ordered his guards coldly, "Go find out everything about Chu Zhaoyang."
On the way back to the Ye residence, Ai Hui counted his heaven merit points joyfully. "Goods delivered, bill settled!"
He had a huge sum of 2,600 Heaven Merit Points on him in total. Putting things into perspective, the blueprint for an elemental energy pool cost 1,000 Heaven Merit Points, and Ai Hui could now afford that Blood Ink Sword.
But Ai Hui could not bear to do so.
He was going to the Wilderness soon, and there were many other things which required Heaven Merit Points.
Relishing his riches, Ai Hui's footsteps were significantly lighter. Fu Sisi, who was walking beside him, held her head down silently as she was deep in thought.
As the Ye residence's gates came into sight, Fu Sisi asked suddenly, "Are you interested in becoming the Fu family's son-in-law?"
Ai Hui was stunned. He turned around and looked at her as if he was looking at a fool. "Do you think I'm stupid?"
Fu Sisi continued, "10,000 Heaven Merit Points."
Ai Hui looked at her in disdain. "Who are you trying to scare? I can't even sell you for 10,000 Heaven Merit Points."
Fu Sisi responded calmly, "Although the Fu family is not as capable as the Ling residence, it is still not an ordinary family without any foundation. If not Heaven Merit Points, there will always be treasures suitable for you. If you don't like me, you can still seek outside pleasures after marriage. All I need is a status."
Chu Zhaoyang's earlier display had shocked her. She realized that everyone had been underestimating his abilities. The Fu family lacked a pillar of support right now.
And she saw huge potential in Chu Zhaoyang.
Chu Zhaoyang had innate sword skills that exceeded her imagination. Coupled with the Fu family's financial resources, he could become a Master within a short period of time.
Most importantly, she could use this reason to convince her family.
"This ends now. It's been purely business between us. I have no interest in a flat figure girl like you. Plus, am I so free as to provoke the Ling residence? Are you taking advantage of the fact that I'm new to Silver City? I've already helped you once for the sake of Heaven Merit Points. We will announce our breakup when we get back. I do not want to be assassinated in the middle of the night."
He felt pleased that his words had Fu Sisi speechless. He shot a glance back out of the corner of his eyes. He'd long noticed that there were people following them from afar.
Ai Hui inhaled deeply before putting a grieved look on his face. He pointed at Fu Sisi with a trembling hand and turned his pitch up a notch, saying, "Marry into your family? I've said it before. Do not mention such things to me. I, Chu Zhaoyang, am a capable man. How can I marry into your family? Blame it on my ignorance for misjudging you! From today onward, let us not cross paths. All ties shall be broken. Go on your way, while I go on mine."
Fu Sisi fell into a daze, but reacted shortly after. She looked at him with a bitter smile.
He noticed those following them had become restless, excited, and evidently relieved. He could tell that Ling Xiao was absolutely not going to let the matter rest. The Ling residence was practically a tyrant in this city. Offending them meant the end of peaceful nights.
Money making was important, but he had no plans to get into trouble over it.
He had limited time. Other than practicing, he had been searching for that notebook in the Grass Hall, so where would he find the time to play house with these young aristocrats?
His acting had improved though!
Ai Hui winked at Fu Sisi, glad that he had gained the upper hand once again. This woman was very scheming, and he had almost been made a fool. If he had not put an end to this affair, he would most definitely be expecting a visit from an assassin tonight.
Fu Sisi looked gloomy as she stared coldly at Ai Hui.
Just then, a gentle voiced sounded from close by, "You guys..."
At a cross street not far away, a person could be seen on her way back to the residence. Madam Ye looked at the both of them with suspicion.
Ai Hui's heart jumped. Not good.
A grim smile appeared at the corner of Fu Sisi's lips. Her eyes turned red quickly and tears started spilling out generously. Crying loudly, she dashed toward Madam Ye and threw herself into her arms, bawling nonstop.
"What happened? What happened exactly? Don't cry, tell me what's going on. I'll help you!"
Madam Ye comforted Fu Sisi gently.
"Huuu... I've known him for many years and we had something good going on. Huu..."
"He's not made a name for himself, but not once did I abandon him. I bought sword manuals for him and trained with him. Finally he made progress, so I asked him to come over to Silver City in order to be with him. Huuu..."
"He... he wants to end all ties with me. Wants... wants me to go my own way... Huuu..."
A murderous glint flashed across her face as she threw piercing glances at Ai Hui.
Ai Hui was speechless this time. His body stiffened up like a statue.