Cang Qiuzi’s words disgusted Han Yunxi to the point of wanting to hurl. This old thing not only absolved himself of all blame but pushed it all on me instead. He makes it sound as if it’s my fault that Long Feiye crippled Duanmu Yao.
Even if that’s the case, it’s perfectly justified what he did!
Noticing the stares of the other three elders, Han Yunxi stopped bearing things silently. There were words that had to be said!
“Elder Cang, aren’t your words mistaken?” she said coldly. “What do you mean His Highness kicked up a row with Duanmu Yao as soon as he got a proper consort? It was this wangfei who met His Highness Duke of Qin first. We got along perfectly fine before. Why did he run into so much trouble after gaining a junior sister at Celestial Mountain?”
Cang Qiuzi looked at her in disbelief, while the other elders seemed befuddled. They had no idea what Han Yunxi was talking about. But Cang Qiuzi maintained his manners as a “kindly old elder” and smiled guilelessly as he explained, “You probably don’t know, do you? Feiye went to study in Celestial Mountain when he was four. Yao Yao was still a toddler then, so they met when they were still very young. Everyone in Cloud Realm Continent knows of this.”
Han Yunxi didn’t want to be polite with Cang Qiuzi, even if it was playing pretend! Since Long Feiye had already exposed the news of Grand Concubine Yi’s kidnapping, then she didn’t mind causing a ruckus so everyone else knew too! Let all of Celestial Mountain see just what kind of people Cang Qiuzi and Duanmu Yao were.
She gave a snort of contempt. “I never expected a man of your years, Elder Cang, to be so little versed in the ways of the world. This wangfei and His Highness’s marriage is common news across Cloud Realm Continent as well. Why doesn’t Elder Cang know of this?”
She looked at Long Feiye, then added, “When this wangfei was still in the womb, I was already decreed to marry His Highness. Before I was even born, this wangfei was His Highness Duke of Qin’s. If we’re talking about who came first, then who was earlier than this wangfei?”
Everyone grew stunned by her words except for Long Feiye, who was smiling. A faint curve graced his lips, showing his good mood. He had almost forgotten about that fact until she brought it up. Actually, this woman had been his from the womb!
Cang Qiuzi’s mouth twitched as his beard trembled with suppressed rage. This damned lass is calling me inexperienced in public? And now she’s saying such absurd fallacies! He was a prim and proper Head Elder of Celestial Mountain, leader of all but one in the peaks. Nobody dared to disrespect him. Even people as proud as Long Feiye showed him surface courtesy. Now Han Yunxi was ridiculing him--where was he to put his face?
“Preposterous. Han Yunxi, did you forget how you married into the Duke of Qin’s estate? You kicked your own sedan chair door and stepped over the threshold,” Cang Qiuzi huffed, but he quickly regretted his words. A man of his status shouldn’t know about such details, especially in the face of the other three elders! Han Yunxi had angered him befuddled!
See now, she was smiling disdainfully at him. “Elder Cang, what does His Highness’s marriage with me have to do with you? I showed understanding for the Duke of Qin’s busy schedule and entered the estate myself, so what? Did it get in the way of your affairs at all? You’re an old grandfather arguing with a woman like me over details like this. Do you have any pride?”
“You!” Elder Cang roared. “Showing no respect for one’s elders or betters!”
Since he can’t beat me, he’s using his age to threaten me instead? Han Yunxi hated old men who flaunted their seniority. She arched a brow and laughed coldly. “Elder Cang, who are you to me? Always considering yourself infallible!”
They were neither kith nor kin and simply differed in ages. Did he want to be her elder by merit of that fact? He wasn’t worthy! Choked with anger, Cang Qiuzi raised a hand to strike, but Long Feiye immediately blocked his wrist. Matters requiring a venomous tongue were left to Han Yunxi, while events involving action were left to him. He detested people who spoke about their wedding--more so in the present than the past.
He remembered every single thing he owed Han Yunxi!
Cang Qiuzi was surprised. He immediately shifted, but Long Feiye simply moved to match him without batting an eye. As the two of them drew their swords, the atmosphere grew tense!
“Long Feiye, you dare to raise your hand against this old man?” Cang Qiuzi asked coldly. He didn’t really want to fight the young, because it’d only lead to an unstoppable row. Han Yunxi wasn’t a disciple of the Celestial Mountain Sword Sect, so he couldn’t do anything to her. But as Long Feiye’s martial uncle, he had status to keep him under control. The two of them had fought outside Celestial Mountain grounds for personal reasons, but now they were standing in the peak before the other elders!
“Feiye, you mustn’t be impolite. If there’s words to say, just speak!” Granny You scolded. Respecting one’s elders was the most important rule in the sect.
“Your lordship is doing this for Martial Uncle Cang’s sake. If he really slapped her, it’d be too late to regret,” Long Feiye said icily. “Just because he lost a verbal spar, he raises his hand to hit a woman. If news of this spread, what face would be left for Martial Uncle Cang or Celestial Mountain Sword Sect? Moreover, she’s the female mistress of South Ning’s commander-in-chief’s estate. If Martial Uncle Cang dares to harm a hair on her head, your lordship might not fuss, but South Ning might think differently! Is Lockheart Courtyard intentionally provoking trouble for Celestial Mountain Sword Sect?”
Long Feiye’s extreme words finished as he harshly swung Cang Qiuzi’s arm aside. Silence greeted his speech. Despite Long Feiye’s polite tone, he was far more wicked than Han Yunxi. At most, Han Yunxi’s venomous tongues would only attract a few curious disciples here to listen and humiliate Cang Qiuzi personally. But Long Feiye’s words were an undisguised threat! He couldn’t defy sect rules, but allowed Han Yunxi to prattle. He wouldn’t pick a private grudge with Lockheart Courtyard, but borrow Han Yunxi for battle! As the clear mastermind behind the curtains, he did nothing but “helpfully remind” Cang Qiuzi of the situation.
As the various elders exchanged looks, they realized that Long Feiye had come prepared. Cang Qiuzi had nothing else to say---neither further argument nor dropping the subject would do, leaving him in an awkward pinch. He had always possessed excellent patience to stay calm in the face of disasters, but how did this slip of a woman called Han Yunxi tick him off with a few sentences? Now that he saw the numerous disciples gathering around them, he truly felt regret.
Still, he managed to calm himself down. Instead of dragging this commotion on any longer and ruining his plans with Duanmu Yao while the sword sect master was still in closed door cultivation, he had to stop now because it’d give them no gains.
“Forget it, forget it. This old man can’t be bothered with you young people and your eating vinegar. I don’t want to, either. Once your master comes out of cultivation, have him take care of things!” Cang Qiuzi said and prepared to leave.
Long Feiye took a step forward and blocked his way with his body without lifting a hand against the man. Han Yunxi only said coldly, “This has nothing to do with vying for affections or eating vinegar! It’s something that involves human life! Elder Cang, you colluded with Duanmu Yao to kidnap Grand Concubine Yi. We might as well make things clear in the presence of the two Depositories and Courtyard disciples so there’s no second-guessing and negative influences in the future.”
“Han Yunxi, people can eat whatever they want, but not speak however they please! This old man just said that Grand Concubine Yi’s kidnapping was purely Duanmu Yao’s idea. This old man couldn’t stop her. Yao Yao simply suffered a moment of stubbornness. She didn’t really do anything to Grand Concubine Yi. This old man never thought you husband and wife pair could be so vicious as to cripple her martial arts and even take her life. If this old man hadn’t come in time, perhaps the sword sect master would never see his beloved disciple again!”
Cang Qiuzi’s words were filled with indignation and justice on his side. The other three elders had no idea of the true situation, so they were hesitant to intervene. They had long heard of Lady Leng Yue’s death, and how Long Feiye had gifted the City of Daughters to Han Yunxi. But they never thought that incident was connected to Duanmu Yao and Cang Qiuzi as well. It looked like the couple were here to seek revenge. Granny You had long grown sick of the sight of Cang Qiuzi but had never found his weak point--going against sect regulations and accepting bribes. If Long Feiye could present adequate proof, she wouldn’t be biased in her judgment from the Abstinence Courtyard, but she’d find Cang Qiuzi a suitable punishment for certain.
The Sword and Scripture Depository elders had attached themselves to Cang Qiuzi over the years, but were oppressed as a result. If Long Feiye could topple the man, they would all hasten to help. However, without ample proof, they wouldn’t get involved at all. If Long Feiye couldn’t defeat Cang Qiuzi, they’d only suffer grief. The sword sect master was still behind closed doors, while Duanmu Yao hadn’t shown herself at all since her return. Only patience would show how things would develop.
“Then may I ask how Elder Cang learned that Duanmu Yao was going to kidnap Grand Concubine Yi? And when?” Han Yunxi asked patiently.
The surrounding disciples were growing in the numbers as they gathered to watch. Cang Qiuzi knew that he couldn’t avoid a confrontation today. Since Duanmu Yao was already going to admit her guilt, all he had to do was wash himself clean of suspicion. He had already prepared an excuse to win over the sword sect master, so now he used it ahead of time on Han Yunxi.
“This old man was completely ignorant up until the day I ran into Duanmu Yao’s servant girl. Only then did I find out Yao Yao had kidnapped Grand Concubine Yi to threaten Feiye into handing over the Profound Frost Sword. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to stop her. As soon as this old man was careless, that lass slipped away. This old man even brutally tortured that servant girl before I discovered she was headed for Lost Void Lake.”
As Cang Qiuzi spoke, he shook his head helplessly. “It’s a pity, ah. Feiye had already crippled Yao Yao by the time this old man made it to Lost Void Lake. If I was just one step later, Yao Yao might have even lost her life! Feiye, she’s still your junior sister, ah. How could you be so callous?”
Han Yunxi knitted her brows at the shameless man. A proper head elder of the sword sect could spin a tale full of nothing but lies and nonsense. The more power and influence they have, the better they act! He’s probably made ample preparations for that “servant girl” as well to act as his authenticator.
At the time, there was no one present at the scene besides the three of them and the people from the City of Daughters. Many of those witnesses had already died, while the rest had been thoroughly interrogated by Long Feiye’s men while refusing to admit a thing.
So are the events supposed to go according to Cang Qiuzi’s lies? Is he going to pin a crime on us just by his words alone?
Noticing Han Yunxi’s expression made a flash of disdain flick past Cang Qiuzi’s gaze. He said, “If you two don’t believe this old man, I can’t do anything about it. Yao Yao and that servant girl are both kneeling on the mountain peak to wait for the sword sect elder to emerge. Yao Yao was greatly in the wrong for this, but Feiye has quite the crimes as well. Once your master comes out, this old man won’t favor either side.”
Cang Qiuzi was simply too shameless! Han Yunxi couldn’t accept this. She creased her brows and thought back to the events at Lost Void Lake. She refused to believe that perfect lies existed in this world. There had to be a flaw in Cang Qiuzi’s lies!
There must be!Previous Chapter Next Chapter