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The invitation from the General’s Mansion was both with manner and indifference. Chen Chang Sheng told Luo Luo to stay where she was. He walked towards the carriage parking place on the street. Only when he walked there did he notice that nothing but silence surrounded the carriage. Not a single person was around and the previous guard who invited him was no where to be seen.
The battle horse in front of the carriage was tall and muscular. Its mane showed hints of crimson in the darkness of night. Surely it was no regular species and was a certain unique beast’s descendent. Although the horse was intimidating, Chen Chang Sheng didn’t glance at it for even a moment because the person he needed to see was the guest sitting inside the carriage.
The guest was still sitting in the carriage. There were bright lamps hanging around the carriage and the light shone through the windows and projected the guest’s shadow onto the curtain. His image was so clear that it seemed to be carved by knives and swords.
Chen Chang Sheng bowed towards the shadow on the curtain of the carriage. Its shadow was clear and so was the person inside. The terrifying and serious aura of him was also clear. It wasn’t until now did Chen Chang Sheng realize where the two pressures he felt previously in the Ivy Festival came from – one of the reasons he attended the Ivy Festival was to see the guest with his own eyes. Although during the entire festival the guest never seemed to lay his eyes on Chen Chang Sheng, he actually was observing Chen Chang Sheng.
“It has been a long time since you left Xi Ning and arrived at the capital. Up until now, I haven’t heard any rumors that I don’t want to hear. This proves that you are a smart person and your choices are steady. I like it.”
Xu Shi Ji’s calm and cold voice was heard behind the curtains, “After you joined the Tradition Academy, you learned how to use your background. Now I noticed that you are smarter than I imagined. It’s hard to say, but I’m starting to like you more and more.”
Chen Chang Sheng knew he was speaking the truth instead of scoffing or been sarcastic. He was not enough for the Yu Dong General to scoff at, or even be lied to. But he didn’t grow happy from his liking because he noticed that he still didn’t like Xu Shi Dong’s taste.
The taste was not bitter, spicy, sour, or sweet. It was an indescribable feeling. The tone that Xu Shi Ji used when talking to him was also a taste.
Calm, yet indifferent. It wasn’t intentional but Xu Shi Dong looked down on Chen Chang Sheng as an elder.
Chen Chang Sheng didn’t like this. If it weren’t for the troubles that grew out of the marriage vow and the abuse he endured from the General’s Mansion, if Xu Shi Ji actually was treating him with an attitude of an elder, then he wouldn’t mind. But the problem was that the previous statements were true.
Xu Shi Jie was silent for a while. Perhaps he was surprised with Chen Chang Sheng’s silence, or maybe he needed some time to think about some stuff. The night breeze blew around the lamps. He asked, “Who is she?”
Yes, this was the thing he actually cared about. Of course, this concern didn’t originated from the marriage vow that Chen Chang Sheng made. He didn’t care about any female contact with Chen Chang Sheng because he never treated Chen Chang Sheng as his future son-in-law.
Started from the moment that Luo Luo stepped up to the battle stone of the Ivy Festival, his subordinates in the general’s mansion started to research her background. Yet when the Ivy Festival ended and Xu Shi Ji rode the carriage and left the Heavenly Academy, there was still no information found about her background whatsoever.
Xu Shi Ji knew the great ability of his subordinates. He was surprised.
The young girl was with Chen Chang Sheng and therefore, he was also alerted.
Chen Chang Sheng didn’t answer his question because he felt that he didn’t need to answer Xu Shi Ji’s questions.
The shadow on the curtain grew clearer and its outline became sharper. This was perhaps because Xu Shi Ji got closer to the window.
The aura also grew more terrifying and the pressure seemed to become a real existence.
Chen Chang Sheng felt an uneasiness in his chest, as if a mountain was landing on him.
“Speaking the truth, I regret a little.” Xu Shi Ji’s emotionless voice was heard from the carriage.
“When you just came to capital, and no one knew you, I should’ve just killed you. There is a rule among generals and that is to be merciless. I obviously know, but after all you are connected with Xu mansion, someone wants you to stay alive, so I let you stay alive.”
Chen Chang Sheng looked down but didn’t say a word.
“The capital in the summer, was a place where people can easily die….The flood period is very hard to be certain, but what can be certain is, the rivers in the capital will definitely rise in level. When the river level rises, it will wash away both floating corpses and ashes.”
Xu Shi Ji spoke through the carriage window coldly.
“For example, Professor Cao from Heavenly Academy. After tonight, perhaps he will become a floating corpse thousands miles away from the capital, or perhaps he will become food for the kois in the River Luo. All in all, no one will see him again.”
After hearing this, Chen Chang Sheng shockingly raised his head and looked towards the window. He didn’t understand why the professor from the Heavenly Academy was going to die.
“After all, that little monster is one of the Family of Tian Hai…… no matter how the situation turns out, the professor still acted out on his own accord, and the queen will be unhappy. If the queen gets angry, then Sir Zhou Tong will be very mad. If Sir Zhou Tong is furious….then he will face something worse than death.”
“Therefore, the professor will commit suicide tonight.”
“Sure, I regretted not killing you from the beginning and now it’s difficult for me to react. I must remind you though, that there are many ways of surviving that are more terrifying than death in this world. The professor understood this, and I hope you will too.”
The lamps waved back and forth lightly and the light dimmed a little. Dozens of guards appeared from the darkness and circled around the carriage as it traveled slowly past the street and towards the Dong Yu General’s Mansion. The tall battle horse peeked indifferently at Chen Chang Sheng right before it left.
Xu Shi Ji was silent in the carriage and gloomy fire was burning in the depths of his pupils. It was not violent but rather cold. He noticed that some stuff was getting out of his control. Because of the letter sent from Mountain Virgin, he never really got to control the situation, but now it got even more strange.
He knew clearly why Chen Chang Sheng entered the Tradition Academy. He first thought that there was nothing much about this event, but now even if this was true, some people are trying to use this fact to start trouble. The people who were still loyal to the Royal Chen Family in the Tradition seemed to finally obtain a chance to overturn after all these years. How would this situation affect the Dong Yu General’s Mansion?
This thing was way too big, even if he was the most trusted General of the Divine Queen, he dared not step his foot into this pool. The only thing he knew was that if Chen Chang Sheng actually got pulled into that pool of dirty water, then no one could know about this marriage vow. At least it should be hidden for a few more days.
After these few more days, the southern powers would sent a representative group to the capital. The few dozens of students entering the Great Trial from the south are also in this group. Because of this, the next two nights of this year’s Ivy Festival would be delayed.
There was still a while for the Great Trial to come. The southerners broke the usual tradition and arrived at the capital few months early. This action started some suspicion and debate, but Xu Shi Ji knew clearly that the Divine Queen welcomed the arrival of this representative group.
Only a few people in the entire continent knew that the reason for the early arrival of the southern representative group was that they were preparing to propose on the Valentine’s Day.
Xu Shi Ji knew this because the southern representative was about to propose to his daughter.
He wouldn’t allow anyone or anything to interrupt this marriage.
Not Chen Chang Sheng, not that mysterious young girl, not anyone.
He didn’t care about the Tradition Academy, Heavenly Academy, or the old royal family and the darkness in the capital. He didn’t care about twists and plots. If anyone tried to interrupt this marriage, then he was not afraid to kill, even if they were people who shouldn’t be killed.
Since he had a good daughter, then nothing he did would harm him as long as he didn’t betray the Divine Queen.
Of course, if there were better ways to solve those unpredictable variables, such as Chen Chang Sheng and that young girl, then it would be nice. But first, he had to determine some things and ask some people to prepare.
“To the Orange Garden.” He said.
The carriage of the Dong Yu General’s Mansion moved slowly on the street and disregarded the strict curfew of the capital and rode towards the royal palace.
The Orange Garden is a garden not too far away from the royal palace. Although its acres of land wasn’t huge, many orange trees were planted there.
To be able to have a garden around the royal palace and plant the expensive orange trees, the owner couldn’t be an ordinary person.
That is the home of Lady Mo Yu.
After returning to the Tradition Academy and standing beneath a tree around the lake, thinking back to the shadow on that carriage window, Chen Chang Sheng wasn’t in a good mood. He wanted to scream at the river but he was afraid to disturb the people living in the Herb Garden on the other side of the wall. He wanted to curse but noticed that his master or senior never taught him how to.
He turned around sadly and walked towards the library. On his way through the forest, he saw a orange tree and there were many new-born small fruits hanging on the branches. Instinctively, he plunked one down and ate it. His eyes and eyebrows then proceed to wrinkle due to the sourness of the fruit.
“Even you are going to bully me?” He kicked the orange tree and his breath got heavier.
Small oranges fell down like rain drops and a moaning was heard from the back of the tree.
Luo Luo rubbed her head and walked out. In her right hand was a lunch box and her left hand covered her mouth. Her face was filled with surprise as if she saw something strange.
Chen Chang Sheng was a little surprised as well. He asked, “didn’t you go back to sleep?”
Luo Luo answered, “Auntie Li prepared some late night snack and I was going to share with master.”
Chen Chang Sheng saw her expression and was confused, “Then why are you surprised?”
Luo Luo opened her wide eyes and answered sincerely, “I never knew that a character like master would have such a childish side as well.”
Chen Chang Sheng was a little embarrassed and walked towards the library.
A quiet voice was heard from the forest and it was affected by the sourness of the green orange.
“I only turn fifteen in a few months, so what if I have a childish side…..”