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Chapter 894 – Give Up or Surrender?
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
The Qiushan clan head was somewhat astonished, saying, "I don't know who the designer of this trap is, but I do know that this matter has nothing to do with you."
Qiushan Jun put his roast fish on the rock and very seriously explained, "Father, it's like this. If this plan succeeds, doesn't that mean that Chen Changsheng is very stupid?"
The Qiushan clan head replied, "Perhaps Chen Changsheng might be somewhat talented in the art of the sword and cultivation, but in terms of resourcefulness, he's not even fit to carry your shoes."
Qiushan Jun somewhat helplessly said, "I'm not intending to go up the mountain, so there's no need for Father to use these methods to waste time."
The Qiushan clan head smiled from ear to ear and said, "Stupid."
This was an answer to the earlier question.
Qiushan Jun said, "It's common knowledge that Yourong loves Chen Changsheng. If Chen Changsheng is really a coarse and stupid fellow, doesn't that mean that Yourong is also very stupid?"
The Qiushan clan head pondered this question, then replied, "This sort of conjecture doesn't have much basis, but it must be said that some people really might think this way."
Qiushan Jun continued, "That settles it. If Yourong is very stupid, then aren't I, who loves her, even more stupid?"
The Qiushan clan head found himself somewhat powerless to refute this. He said, "Even if you want to help Chen Changsheng break out of this trap, you don't have any evidence. Could you possibly be planning to do like you did in Wenshui City and use up your reputation? It's not easy to raise a reputation! You can't just waste it on trifling matters like these, and that fellow is also your rival."
Qiushan Jun laughed and said no more, putting all his focus on eating his roasted fish.
At the summit of Holy Maiden Peak, clear light shone over all, and a gentle breeze blew against the ivy on the stone walls, causing it to rustle. Soon after, the lush forest began to rustle as well, as countless spirit beasts emerged from the shrubs and pine needles, opening their glossy black eyes and looking towards the stone wall, apparently sensing that something significant was about to occur. Even more rare birds began to fly from the lush peaks of the Luomei Mountains and continuously circle the summit, forming a gorgeous ribbon.
In the cave in the depths of the wall, the crystals spread out like sand over the ground still twinkled with a dazzling luster, and the flat bed carved completely from jade was even more striking. However, most striking of all was still that peerless beauty seated cross-legged on the jade bed.
Xu Yourong's eyes were closed in meditation. Her skin was as white as the purest snow, looking tender enough to break with a pinch. In the reflected light of the crystals, it practically seemed transparent. Her delicate eyelashes calmly rested over her eyes, as beautiful as the first green leaves sprouting from the camphor trees on the cliffs.
At some point, perhaps when the gentle breeze blew against the ivy on the stone wall, her delicate lashes fluttered, and then she woke up. At first, those two moving eyes were still tinged with a little confusion, appearing as innocent and honest as a child's.
As time passed like water over her mind and body, the confusion in her eyes gradually dulled, returning to indifference and serenity. Just like the drizzle of rain that fell over the mountains and forests in the Qingming season, bursting with a refreshing aura. A single glance would make one unwilling to leave. (TN: The Chinese calendar divides the year into 24 solar terms, of which the Qingming Festival marks the beginning of the fifth solar term, the Qingming season, and also the third month of the Chinese year. The Qingming season is fifteen days from the Spring Equinox.)
Her gaze fell on the Fated Star Plate before her. The complicated star orbits on the Fated Star Plate began to cycle, silently gathering together and dispersing. In a very short amount of time, it produced thirty-some star atlases, and the final region of the sea of stars it pointed at was the most vast, mysterious, and dangerous.
She became solemn and shifted her gaze to the potted flower to her right.
This was a garishly bright flower, a large red blossom magnificently flourishing amidst extremely tender green leaves. Green leaves contrasting with a red blossom should have made for the most common of beautiful sights, yet because both were brought to an extremely high level, their beauty was refined to a higher level, a moving sight that was seemingly even suffused with the principles of the world.
Commonness brought to great heights was not guaranteed to become great elegance. On many occasions, it was impossible to do so. If one accomplished this feat, that could only mean one thing: the Great Dao was not far.
As she gazed at these green leaves and red flower, Xu Yourong had a rather mixed expression.
After a while, she dispelled all other emotions, leaving only indifference and serenity.
This was what it truly meant to be firm and unwavering.
But she couldn't help but feel somewhat regretful.
She faintly smiled. "Alas, it is truly a pity to not be able to fully bloom."
The ceremony for closing the temple was not held at Holy Maiden Peak, but on a plateau ten-some li away.
When Qiushan Jun was eating roast fish, when Xu Yourong was appreciating the flower and comprehending the Dao, Chen Changsheng was confronting a most perilous trial.
Everyone now believed that Zhizhi had killed Bie Tianxin. He naturally knew that this wasn't the case, but he had no evidence, and couldn't even have Zhizhi appear to give evidence. Thus, many people thought that he was showing a guilty conscience, practically proof that he was the true instigator of that assassination on the river.
The disciples of South Stream Temple had formed the sword array and stood guard in front of him. There were presumably still some people willing to support him, like Gou Hanshi and the disciples of the Mount Li Sword Sect or Scholartree Manor, but compared to the Imperial Court represented by the Prince of Xiang and those sects that followed the Imperial Court's orders, they were far too few in number. Crucially, his opponents this time were Bie Yanghong and Wuqiong Bi, two experts of the Divine Domain. Moreover, this pair were so stricken with sorrow by the death of their son that they simply didn't care about his status.
Just how could Chen Changsheng resolve this situation? Did he really have to depend on South Stream Temple's sword array to guard him while he availed himself of the chaos to escape? It had to be said that no matter how powerful the sword array was, it could not resist the simultaneous strikes of experts like these for too long, especially given the number of opponents today.
Everyone wanted to know what he would choose, their minds continuously guessing.
But his choice still caught everyone by surprise.
Chen Changsheng looked at Bie Yanghong and said, "I understand that all evidence points to me and Zhusha, but I myself naturally know that this matter was not her doing, much less on my order. However, I am willing to depart with Sir, and until this matter is investigated fully, I will remain with you."
This choice was so shocking that many people couldn't speak.
Following was not some simple action but meant that he was giving up and putting his life completely in Bie Yanghong's hands.
To the Pope, this was naturally an enormous humiliation. And more importantly, what if Bie Yanghong simply killed him?
The archbishop from the southern church, his expression instantly changing, said in a trembling voice, "Your Holiness, this cannot be allowed."
Ping Xuan and the other South Stream Temple disciples were also shocked, wondering, just how is this okay? Hu Thirty-Two also showed his displeasure. As an archbishop, he could not possibly allow the safety of the Pope to be put in the hands of another. Tang Thirty-Six and Gou Hanshi, however, remained silent and pensive.
Of the people present, Tang Thirty-Six and Gou Hanshi were the ones that understood Chen Changsheng the most.
They knew that Chen Changsheng would never have Holy Maiden Peak run with rivers of blood today and cause countless deaths just for his own safety. Thus, if he wanted to resolve this matter, this was the only way. It was just that nobody knew if choosing to entrust himself to Bie Yanghong was a successfully taken risk or a foolish gamble.
Bie Yanghong had a very composed personality and a noble character, but he was still a father. Might not the grief from the death of his son cause him to do something crazy?
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Way of Choices ebook 3 (covering chapters 129-179) out now!