Chapter 27: A Cunning, Idiot Young Miss (3)

“So?” Wei Xuan raised an inquiring eyebrow. “To call me out to such a place, what do you have in mind?”

“Nothing of such regard,” the opposite party replied as he sat down across from the disgruntled minister. A handsome man wrapped in a black tunic greeted the minister’s eyes, the features perfect and worthy of obsession.

“Sorry for calling you out to such a place,” the man said, pouring himself a cup of wine.

“But if this were to be heard in anyone’s residence, there would be a nightmare descending on both of our heads.”

Wei Xuan opened his mouth to issue a snappy retort, but paused after giving it some thought. His gaze flickering around, the minister carefully scrutinized the room they were in, even going to the extent of infusing his vision with spiritual essence.

The tables, the various ornaments, brushes, stacks of white paper, even the bed near the recesses of the room was unable to escape from his surveillance.

Only when he had determined that the room was free of any spies, did the minister sigh once and glare at the other party.

“What exactly makes you discard that disguise?” he finally spoke.

“And what’s this discussion you wanted to have that carries so much danger?”

“My disguise?” the man chuckled.

“Senior Brother, ah, you actually liked me running around as an old, dying man, calling you ‘Lord Minister’, ‘Lord Minister?’”

“Enough!” The minister scowled.

Gao Yun Zhi instantly smiled, raising both hands to placate Wei Xuan’s anger. Raising his head as he waited for the minister’s temper to simmer, the physician admired the room’s decoration and appearance.

“Red silk for drooping curtains, with the beams made of freshly cut willow,” he sighed.

“That’s truly lavish for such a scholar’s association. It’s a pity that such materials and the style of construction typically belongs to a flowerhouse or even a high-class brothel.”

“That’s because this place is indeed a flowerhouse,” Wei Xuan snorted.

“Bringing me to this place, are you trying to get my head bitten off by the dogs at the Imperial Court tomorrow?”

“Why not? Even His Imperial Majesty attended this Blooming Life Association several times in the past. What of a minister?”

“What of a minister?” Wei Xuan repeated, before wailing in mock despair.

“Yun Zhi, you’re truly trying to kill your Senior Brother, ah! The emperor is the emperor, a minister is a minister, how could it be the same, ah!?”

“An emperor and a minister, they’re still human!” Gao Yun Zhi quickly remarked.

“Since they’re both human, they will naturally have a conclusive end, what difference is there to – Alright, alright, I’ll stop talking now!”

Noticing the fluctuations of spiritual essence near Wei Xuan grow increasingly unstable, the physician clasped his hands in surrender.

Taking a deep breath, the jovial expression on Gao Yun Zhi’s countenance vanished to reveal a solemn look. Looking around, he directed a glance at the door, before withdrawing a dagger from his robes.

Thunk!

A dagger of black ice stabbed deeply into the center of the wooden table, the an unusual pulse of spiritual essence emanating from the hilt. Pointing towards the embedded object with his index finger, a thin stream of blue light burst from Gao Yun Zhi’s fingertip to strike the pommel, the reflected rays dying the scarlet hue of the room an odd violet.

After a few moments, the entire dagger released a pale, azure radiance, a fresh hint of vitality exuding from the blade. Seeing this, Gao Yun Zhi gave a pale smile as he looked around the room bathed with a blue light.

“Always taking so long to establish a cloaking array, and taking so much pride in it afterwards, you really haven’t changed.”

Wei Xuan remarked, several memories attempting to surface in his mind. Shaking his head and chasing those reminiscent thought away, the minister gazed towards the physician, his expression bland as he spoke in a flat tone.

“Spill it out now,” he said as he rested his right arm on the table.

“You wouldn’t disperse your disguise if it was some trivial manner.”

Gao Yun Zhi paused, his teal irises staring at the pommel radiating a warm light. Drumming his fingers, the handsome man seemed unsure how to reply.

“Senior Brother…” he began, his voice trepid and filled with uncertainty.

“This…the <Heaven’s Eye> has displayed its might once again. My cultivation was nearly exposed to Lu Jing Yi, and…”

“Lu Jing Yi used the <Heaven’s Eye>!?” Wei Xuan exclaimed.

“Just why and where did he use such a conflicting technique?”

Gao Yun Zhi froze, his fingers curling into tight fists on the table. A few moments later, he inhaled deeply through clenched teeth.

“It was your fourth daughter,” the handsome physician murmured.

“It seems that her appearance can easily unsettle anyone under the realm of Mortal’s Tribulation. When I briefly scanned Lu Jing Yi whilst he was trapped in that perplexing state, I noticed that his affection for the empress had significantly dwindled after taking a look at your daughter. The rate at how his emotions fluctuated and exploded forth…was truly horrifying.”

“Dwindling attachment for the empress…” Wei Xuan repeated. Suddenly, he raised his right hand, a pearl of silvery spiritual essence coalescing at the center of the palm. With a suppressed yell, the palm slammed onto the pommel of the dagger, the pearl shattering into countless fragments.

“Disperse, the Overseer has no place in this land!”

As the pearl disintegrated, a horizontal disk of silver light appeared above the dagger, slowly rotating counterclockwise as it rested on top of the protruding pommel. On the surface of the disk, threads of silver light seemed to intersect and form arcs at various areas, and the disk gradually coalesced into a complex diagram.

When the diagram had fully emerged, profound, ancient symbols and inscriptions could be perceived circumventing the regions of the array.

“What’s the matter?” Gao Yun Zhi was the first to react.

“Someone attempting to spy on us?”

Wei Xuan frowned as he carefully inspected the ever-changing fluctuations of spiritual essence emanating from the disk. His mouth moved as he mouthed several intelligible words, before returning to a mask of calm.

“No, something different.”

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“Yun Zhi,” the minister spoke in a solemn voice.

“Return to the Blackwind Hills. I’m afraid that the use of the <Heaven’s Eye> has caused your tribulation to arrive sooner than usual.”

“Understood.” Gao Yun Zhi replied after some thought.

“I’ll continue searching for hints regarding the Eight Petaled Violet Yin Herb whilst I’m not in the mainland. However,” he cautioned.

“You must be careful regarding your daughter. Though my presence managed to divert Lu Jing Yi’s attention for some while, he’s still a rather smart man. After some time, he’ll begin delving into why his mind fell into such disarray, and might even take Fei away from you if he goes too far. You’ll have to find a reasonable explanation, perhaps an illusion array as a recently installed defense mechanism.”

Wei Xuan nodded, a grave expression crawling onto his countenance. Clapping the minister on the back, Gao Yun Zhi extracted the dagger from the table, causing the radiant blue light to rapidly disperse to reveal the scarlet hue of the pleasure room.

Agitating his spiritual essence to encase his entire body, the physician gradually merged with the atmosphere, vanishing from sight.

“Lu Jing Yi…” Wei Xuan mused. Flicking his finger, the minister observed the array fragment and disappear, the storm of silver light masking the emotions flickering in his eyes.

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Soon after, the minister had similarly disappeared from the pleasure room, the interior untouched as if not a single person had ever entered in the first place.

Her left hand pinning the sheet of paper in place, the right grasping a brush, An Fei involuntarily froze as she heard Xiao Wen’s startled yell.

“I…”

Just as she was about to speak on reflex and explain herself to the maidservant, the girl stiffened as she recalled that the Fourth Young Miss of Wei was supposed to posses the intellect of no more than an infant.

Hence, she slapped her mouth shut, blinking twice with widened eyes as she gave Xiao Wen a blank stare.

“…Fourth Young Miss?”

The maidservant quickly strode over to the seated An Fei, nearly rubbing her eyes when she saw the girl’s grip of the brush.

Holding the brush with such a low grip, with the base resting on the second finger, then held in place by a combination of the thumb and index finger, what was she doing?

No. This couldn’t do.

Grabbing a firestarter and lighting several of the lamps hanging on the beams, Xiao Wen hoisted An Fei out of the half moon chair, carrying and placing her onto the bed without permitting any refusal from the latter.

Ignoring the look of protest in the girl’s eyes, the maidservant carefully shut the curtains, immersing the poor girl into darkness once again.

“That scared me…” Xiao Wen murmured, patting and massaging her chest as she heaved a sigh of relief.

“If Master saw this, he would probably overturn the entire residence…”

Turning to blow out the lamps before returning to what she assumed would be another fitful night, the maidservant let out an enormous yawn. Rubbing her eyes as she walked towards the extended chair that substituted for a bed, the maidservant couldn’t help but pause, the image of An Fei leaning over the desk flashing in her mind.

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