Walking out of the undergrowth and into the meadow, Pei Qianhao swept his gaze over the corpses of the men in black. These people have undergone stringent training. Once they have failed their mission, they will commit suicide. To be able to raise this many sacrificial soldiers[1], I am very curious as to who the mastermind is, and what kind of deep-seated enmity they bear against Nanzhao.


Su Xi-er was also secretly examining the sacrificial soldiers when she discovered that their collars looked very different. Just when she wanted to move closer to inspect them more carefully, the sound of horse hooves could be heard.


The imperial guards from the Prince Hao Residence had all returned. The person in the lead dismounted his horse and knelt down on one knee. His fists were cupped in salute, while his head was bowed in respect. “Reporting to Prince Hao, the men in black had poison pills hidden in their mouths that they would use to end their lives as soon as they are caught. Dead men tell no tales, so we have no way of investigating. Furthermore…” 


Pei Qianhao had a placid countenance. “Continue.”


“While this subordinate was in the midst of hunting them down, another man with extraordinary skills suddenly appeared. Before this subordinate could even see how he moved, my vision became obscured. By the time I opened my eyes again, all the men in black had disappeared.”


It looks like this skilled man could be the mastermind controlling the sacrificial soldiers.


Pei Qianhao’s eyes revealed his interest. “Nanzhao having so much trouble with someone who can disappear with everyone in the blink of an eye. This prince has made the right decision in coming to the state banquet this year.”


Pei Qianhao pulled out the sabre at the imperial guard’s waist and slashed it at the clothes of one of the men in black, causing them to instantly split apart.


There was a very small circular greenish-blue drawing at the bottom of his chest. It would have been impossible to detect it if one hadn’t inspected closely. Su Xi-er had noticed it before while looking at the collars of the soldiers. The drawing at the bottom of the chest and the drawing on the collar are exactly the same. This mark may allow us to find the mastermind.


Pei Qianhao passed the sabre to an imperial guard standing at the side. “This prince won’t interfere with the matters of other nations. I’ll just appreciate the show from the side.”


That said, they could no longer ride on the arrow-ridden carriage. Not to mention, the reins had been snapped in the chaos of the battle.


With a clap of his hands, a fine brown steed galloped over and obediently stopped beside him. He grasped the reins and pushed off from the ground, climbing onto the horse in an instant.


He smiled as he looked at Su Xi-er. “Pick a horse for yourself.”


He didn’t believe what she had said at all. To Pei Qianhao, Su Xi-er was a mystery. She knew a lot of things, but none of them were what a person from an impoverished background should know.


Just as she was about to reply, a sudden noise came from the shrubs. Su Xi-er turned around, only to see Wei Mohai supporting Yun Ruofeng as they walked over. The two of them had managed to come out safely.


Yun Ruofeng’s lips were ashen, and the back of his ear was slightly green, likely because he had been bitten by the banded krait[2]and was suffering the effects of the venom.


Putting himself in danger to lure out the men in black even when a critical event like Nanzhao’s state banquet is just around the corner; he can even be ruthless to himself.


Su Xi-er calmly watched as Wei Mohai supported Yun Ruofeng onto a horse before leading it forward.


Once they enter the capital, they can immediately look for a physician and force the snake venom out.


Su Xi-er deliberately spoke at this moment. “It looks like Prince Yun has been poisoned. Why don’t you force the poison out now? What if it’s too late by the time we reach the capital?”

1. They are either soldiers who put their lives on the line to complete the missions and are prepared to commit suicide if the mission fails or guards who risk their lives to protect someone, ready to sacrifice themselves if need be.

2. A type of snake with black and yellow stripes.

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Rakumon's Thoughts

Hoho Yun Ruofeng got bitten