Although Han Yunxi had no idea that Gu Beiyue had long learned of her pregnancy, she was certain Fourth Young Miss Ren’s prescription would allow Long Feiye to guess as much after reading it! Bai Yanqing only had Duanmu Yao by his side, but she wasn’t necessarily with him. Nor did he ever acknowledge her near-miscarriage. The rest of his hostages were unlikely to have children either except her, who’d been planning for it all this time!
Long Feiye should be happy to hear the news, but these circumstances would only make him miserable. And how much more would he fret after learning of the near miscarriage? She had been preparing to surprise him all this time, but it turned into a fright. After taking her pulse, Fourth Young Miss Ren gave her a clear timeline of her pregnancy that made her realize a few other frightening facts.
Although people called it a ten-month pregnancy, most took only nine months. Her expected delivery day more or less coincided with her dual cultivation deadline. If she couldn’t finish dual cultivating before then, she wasn’t certain whether she’d be able to handle the Moye sword in her last couple months.
So much to worry about!
Long Feiye would definitely think of the same thing and was probably panicking more than her. Who knew if they’d even finished crafting the Moye sword yet?
Just when can we meet again?
Han Yunxi could be said to be patient and enduring, but she was having trouble with her temper ever since Fourth Young Miss Ren arrived and allowed her to sort things out. Though she looked calm on the outside, she was quick to explode. How much she hoped that Long Feiye’s group could guess everything from “Drilling Earth Breeze” and hurry to their rescue.
“Fourth Young Miss, do you remember the path you took to first get here?” Han Yunxi asked earnestly.
“They blindfolded me, but I remember we jumped down from the heights twice into somewhere very steep,” Fourth Young Miss Ren replied. “The entrance must be on the ground.”
“An entrance in the ground? Judging from the passageway outside our stone cell, it could connect to a cliffside opening too,” Han Yunxi murmured, then asked, “Did anything make a deep impression on you when you came?”
Fourth Young Miss Ren thought it over before adding, “I think there was some sort of twisting path after we landed. We curved around for ages, but I don’t remember anything else.”
Han Yunxi nodded. “Looks like there are plenty of underground palaces here with lots of passageways.”
While Han Yunxi and Fourth Young Miss Ren were trying to pinpoint their location, Long Feiye’s group had spent yet another sleepless night to organize all the location names in Medical City. Anything containing the characters from Drilling Earth Breeze, nightdrew, skyleaf, atractylode rhizome, and black spirit skin were fair game. The thirteen characters were divided into 13 sheets and made for a total of 178 seperate locations.
Long Feiye personally picked out 53 possible hiding spots from these locations and then sub-divided that into three areas between the Posion Sect, medical academy, and Medical City. However, the specifics of those locations could be furthered broken down. Medical City had the main headquarters, various shops and temples, gardens, and parks. The medical acdaemy included the storehouses and forbidden grounds, while the Poison Sect only contained Clearbreeze Peak and the Skypit with the “wind” and “sky” characters.
To go any more detailed than that made everyone sweat. 53 possible hiding places obtained from a clue of 13 words was a difficult place to start a search!
“Shall we discuss them one by one?” Gu Qishao suggested.
Long Feiye rolled his eyes at him, then told Gu Beiyue, “Gu Beiyue, you have one night to thoroughly search all the locations in Medical City and the medical academy.”
“Alright!” Gu Beiyue accepted.
At this point, Long Feiye more or less had a good idea of where to go. Although the dangerous place could be the safest one, Bai Yanqing would never risk hiding his hostages within Medical City or its academy. It was more likely he had hidden himself in the Poison Sect instead. If his victims were anyone else, he might choose a different spot, but this was Han Yunxi. She would definitely find a way to get help if they were within city borders.
Thus, Bai Yanqing’s only choice was the Poison Sect. Long Feiye had ordered Gu Beiyue to do a search anyways because he was the prudent type. In the end, he was just making conjectures, after all.
Once Gu Beiyue left, he sat back down on the tea table and drank three cups of strong tea in succession. Only then did he feel calm and refreshed. Those who loved tea shied away from concentrated brews because it was a waste of good tea leaves. Not only was it uncivilized, it was also unhealthy to drink tea like that. This was probably Long Feiye’s first time drinking such strong tea, but he needed to stay alert and rational.
Although he had spent two sleepless nights in Medical City, he’d passed plenty more suffering insomnia in other places. Sometimes, lack of sleep was just reluctance to see someone leave.
After the tea break, Long Feiye’s eyes rested on the Skypit and Clearbreeze Peak locations again. He had already guessed that Bai Yanqing might be hiding in the Poison Sect after arriving at Medical City; moreover, “Drilling Earth Breeze” made him immediately think of Clearbreeze Peak. Everything he’d done up to now was to verify his own thoughts and to maintain security. Although only two names were before him now, he was loath to treat lightly the location of Han Yunxi’s imprsonment. Unless he was 100 percent certain of convincing himself, he wouldn’t make any casual moves. After all, this was their only clue. If they found the wrong place and alerted Bai Yanqng into escaping, Heaven knows when they’d get another chance.
As Long Feiye sat there without a word, Gu Qishao and Tang Li exchanged looks in silence. They too, found seats to sit by his side, both to rest and wait for Gu Beiyue’s news. Xu Donglin and the rest had already withdrawn.
At this moment, another letter came for Gu Beiyue, delivered by a shadow guard. Seeing the good doctor gone and His Highness deep in thought, the guard didn’t dare disturb him and approached Tang Li. “Tang Clan Head, this is a letter from Master Ning in Tianan to Sir Beiyue.”
“What’s going on in Northern Li that he’s telling Gu Beiyue instead of my big bro?” Tang Li muttered back.
“This one is only in charge of delivering messages, so I’m not sure either,” the shadow guard looked awkward before he slipped away.
Gu Qishao glanced over and said, “Stupid! You don’t even need to think, he’s probably asking after Poison lass’s whereabouts.”
Gu Qishao didn’t lower his voice, so his “Poison lass” instantly caught Long Feiye’s attention. As soon as he looked over, he saw the letter in Tang Li’s hand. Tang Li was stuck. On one side was his big brother, on the other his brother-in-law. He couldn’t offend either side! Although he knew about the incident with the violet gauze robes, he had no idea about Ning Cheng’s true feelings for his sister-in-law. In his eyes, Ning Cheng was simply worrying about the princess as a subordinate, which was perfectly justifiable!
While he was debating over what to do, Long Feiye had already retracted his gaze. He summoned another shadow guard with one had and gave him orders in a low breath. “Go ask after Ning Cheng’s battle records. If there’s any losses among them, have Baili Yuanlong transfer troops to assist him right away.”
As soon as Ning Cheng suffered a loss on the battlefield, their deal was thorough. He wouldn’t need Ning Cheng to take all the glory for subjugating Northern Li either.
This ended up being their third sleepless night in Medical City, though it wasn’t clear how many such nights they’d already experienced in the past three months. Humans had physiological limits, so Tang Li and Gu Qishao were soon nodding off. In the end, Gu Qishao even ended up sprawled across the table fast asleep. That was no mean feat for a man who suffered from chronic insomnia. How tired must he be?
Meanwhile, Long Feiye kept downing cup after cup of tea as he stared at a map of the Poison Sect while writing down markers. For the entire night, his face was completely stiff aside from the times he yawned. Like an unsmiling, taciturn god, he sat in his seat with an air that kept everyone at arm’s pace.
When dawn broke, Gu Beiyue finally returned. Seeing Tang Li and Gu Qishao sleeping, he didn’t disturb them but quietly went to Long Feiye’s side. “Your Highness, your health is important,” he murmured softly.
“How is it?” Long Feiye asked coldly. At his words, Tang Li and Gu Qishao startled awake.
“Any news? How did it go?”
Both men’s faces looked sleepy up to the moment they spotted Gu Beiyue.
“I’ve searched them all, there’s no one there!” Gu Beiyue replied.
“Then it has to be Clearbreeze Peak!” Long Feiye said immediately.
“Clearbreeze Peak? I’ve gone there twice, but there’s no place to hide anyone there! As I see it, Skypit is more likely! Who knows if there’s more unknown levels underneath?” Gu Qishao retorted.
Without a word, Long Feiye brought out the list of names and showed them Drilling Earth Breeze, nightdew, skyleaf, atractylode rhizome, and black spirit skin. Of the thirteen characters, four had been circled: night, sky, white, and black.
“White day, black night?” Gu Beiyue blurted out.
Long Feiye nodded. “Sun (日) and moon (月). Together they form ‘clear!’(明)”
The sun could be seen in the daytime, the moon at night. The characters for “sun” and “moon” together formed “clear.”
Now everyone fell silent and traded looks. Soon enough, Tang Li was slapping his thigh. “So it’s like that! With “wind” and “clear,” you get Clearbreeze Peak!”
Long Feiye took out his map full of scrawls before summoning Xu Donglin. Coldly he ordered, “You have five days to transfer all possible men here and arrange them according to this map.”
Gu Qishao glanced at the map and saw that Long Feiye had set up a triple guard. The first surrounded Medical City, the second all of Poison Sect, and the third was hidden all over Phoenix Song Peak. He narrowed his eyes as they filled with killing intent! If we don’t have a big showdown this time, then my name’s not Gu Qishao!
“Big bro, give an extra day. I’ll have the Tang Clan send over their latest weapons for the shadow guards to use!” Tang Li said urgently. Although he’d just woken up, he was already raring to go when it meant seeing Ning Jing and taking revenge.
“Permitted,” Long Feiye said icily.
Even the gentle Gu Beiyue had a terrifying, murderous look in his eyes. Long Feiye clenched his fists as his irises blackened into bottomless pits…
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At last, we move forward with the releases...and the rescue plan!