By the time Ye Zichen’s group reached Heavenly God City’s walls, the night sky was already full of stars.
Their dazzling light glittered overhead, and the lights of hearths and homes lit up the world below.
The street vendors and shopkeepers all hung red lanterns, and even from outside the city, they could hear the sound of lively taverns.
But eleven in the dead of night, Heavenly God City’s defenses had reached an unprecedented height. There were over a dozen guards watching over the gate, and six teams of ten patrolling the immediate area.
The patrols’ strength had gone up. At first, each team’s captain was a sky supreme, but their leaders were now diviners.
Similarly, at first, the ordinary guards had all been earth supremes. Now, each time had at least four or five sky supremes in its ranks.
“Things have gotten this far?” Ye Zichen’s divine sense swept the area. Sensing the city’s heightened defenses, he couldn’t help but frown.
It hadn’t been like this when he’d come here with his team from Skyspan Academy.
“These are unusual times. It’s wise to be on guard,” said Xuan Ji flatly.
She was the one who’d arranged Heavenly God City’s current defenses, as the God Emperor wasn’t currently within the city. When he left, he passed his administrative authority onto her.
This was a heavy responsibility. Xuan Ji naturally couldn’t let Zhou Wu down.
Although she’d repaid his favor to her, she’d lived amongst the gods for ten thousand years. She couldn’t possibly be careless.
Putting so many troops into action was expending an enormous amount of resources, taking more and more each day.
But the relationship between the Yao, Demon, and God Realms was so ambiguous that they couldn’t afford to lower their guard.
In order to prevent anything from going wrong, she naturally had to increase the city’s defenses. It wasn’t just Heavenly God City either; even the rest of the Central Divine Mountain’s cities were all on red alert.
Better safe than sorry. They couldn’t go wrong taking precautions.
Thud thud thud!
The sound of heavy footsteps transmitted from afar, alongside the clang of weapons and heavy armor.
Ye Zichen and company turned towards the source of the noise, only to discover a team of patrolling city guards.
“It’s forbidden to fly within range of Heavenly God City. You up there, please come down. That’ll make it easier for both of us.”
For some reason, the guard’s voice sounded somewhat familiar.
Xuan Ji descended, and when the guard saw her, he immediately fell to one knee. “Lady Providence.”
Ye Zichen saw the guard’s face for the first time. No wonder he thought the man’s voice sounded so familiar! This was the exact same captain of the guards who’d stopped him and Pu Jingwan earlier.
However, his subordinates weren’t the same group as before.
Of course, thinking about it, it was only natural. They were in no condition to work right now. Pu Jingwan hadn’t used all that much force, but she was still a peak ruler expert. It was inevitable that after taking her attacks, the sky and earth supreme guards would need weeks to convalesce.
“It’s you.” Clearly, Xuan Ji had some impression of this captain of the guards too. She couldn’t help but ask, “Did you distribute the Pills of Fortune? You didn’t keep them all to yourself, did you?”
The other guards looked jealous. They’d all heard that Xuan Ji had given away a bottle of Pills of Fortune today. For most people, pills like this could only be obtained by chance, not sought. Many members of the city’s defense system had cursed their rotten luck. If only this great fortune had fallen to them!
Even if they had to take a beating in the process, they couldn’t bat an eye. These were Pills of Fortune! So long as they weren’t beaten to death, nothing else mattered.
“I wouldn’t dare.” The captain of the guards grimaced. “I sent my subordinates home, but before I did, I gave each of them a pill.”
“How are things on the Wang Family’s end?” asked Xuan Ji?
She didn’t care too much about the ordinary guards, but the Wang Family’s attitude was still important.
In Heavenly God City, the Wang Family wasn’t exactly a peak family clan, but they had a long history here, and still had a fair bit of influence.
“You granted them two Pills of Fortune. They naturally wept tears of gratitude. Furthermore, I heard that Her Excellency, the Divine Arbiter, paid the Wang Family a visit not long ago to settle this affair. The Wang Family most likely won’t….” Suddenly, the captain stopped. He’d just recalled what Xuan Ji had said to him, the mission she’d entrusted him with:
The God Emperor absolutely wasn’t supposed to know about this!
The blood instantly drained from the guard’s face, and he broke out into a cold sweat.
“Lady Providence, I….”
“There’s no need to say anything.”
Xuan Ji cut off his explanation. The captain of the guard’s face was unsightly. He was a diviner, and yet, the hand carrying his battle axe had already startled trembling. Sweat dripped from his brow, dripping down his nose and into the dirt. Saying he was drenched in sweat would be no exaggeration.
“It’s fine; I have no intention of blaming you for this.” Xuan Ji glanced at him evenly. “I know the God Emperor found out about this. We just got back from an audience with him.”
Xuan Ji trusted that, after accepting her pills, the guards had kept the incident under tight wraps. The captain of the guards was a minor figure, but he wasn’t completely incapable. If he wanted to keep something secret, he had at least an eighty percent chance of success.
Yet the God Emperor had still found out. Most likely, he had informants in Heavenly God City.
He’d clearly left administrative power over the city in her hands, yet he’d also placed spies and informants to keep watch on her throughout the city.
From this, it was clear that Zhou Wu didn’t trust Xuan Ji as much as he said he did.
More importantly, he’d sent the Divine Arbiter already. Zhou Wu said he would, but she hadn’t expected him to do so so quickly.
It seemed he’d started suspecting her too!
Xuan Ji waved at the captain of the guards a bit irritably. “Thank you for your hard work. Carry on, then.”
As she spoke, she walked into the city. To her surprise, the captain of the guards pulled her aside, and even as she looked at him suspiciously, he stretched out his hand and said, “Lady Providence, your crystal identity card, if you please.”
After entering the city, Xuan Ji’s expression was unsightly. She was the ruler of the Profound Pavilion, a lofty figure, and yet, even she’d been stopped and asked for her ID. Thinking about this, what happened to Ye Zichen and Pu Jingwan was understandable.
That adorable captain of the guards wasn’t making trouble for them on purpose. He was just scrupulously carrying out his duties.
“Is it worth getting so angry about?” Ye Zichen tried to comfort her. “Just now, he checked your crystal card, but you shouldn’t be upset with him. You ought to praise him; in these difficult times, it’s good to be cautious.”
Xuan Ji glanced coldly at him, then a strange smile spread across her face. She inched closer. Ye Zichen, who was still trying to calm her down, realized that he couldn’t even catch her movements. Seemingly out of nowhere, her hand came crashing down on his head.
“Do I need you to tell me that? If you know that, naturally I, your aunt, know it too! My expression isn’t because of the captain, but because of his subordinates. When he asked for my identification, their expressions filled with obvious terror. Clearly, had they been on their own, they would have simply let me inside.”
“But what if I were an imposter? What if I were a disguised yao or demon? What then?”
“It seems I’ll have to arrange for a meeting and point this out to prevent any slip-ups going forward.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter