Chapter 257: His Majesty says, there are two paths Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
After listening to Shadowbolt’s report, Lou Zigui sat unmoving in his chair for a long time. Anxious with waiting, the fourth commander of the Dragon Guards opened his mouth and asked, “Supreme Commander, will the Black Frost Cavalry still make it”
Lou Zigui shook his head once.
“.....” Shadowbolt felt like the skies had collapsed.
Lou Zigui next looked at the gathered officials outside and said expressionlessly, “The most pressing matter now is to escort His Majesty out of the city.”
“Escort His Majesty out of the city? Can’t we give up on the farce?” Shadowbolt asked.
Lou Zigui shook his head again.
Shadowbolt paced nervously in a circle before declaring, “There aren’t many troops in the Grand Preceptor’s hands at the moment.”
“That’s why we need to seize this chance to get His Majesty out of here fast,” Lou Zigui was fretting as well, but it didn’t show on his face. His tone was calm and even, making him look completely nonplussed.
“Then, then how do we do it?” Shadowbolt asked. He had already fallen over shock over the fact that His Majesty couldn’t even stay in the capital city anymore. It was like someone had stuffed his brains with cotton or grass instead, leaving him completely unable to think.
Lou Zigui sat there unspeaking as his fingers tapped the map on the table. Shadowbolt knew he was coming up with ideas, so he had no choice but to shut up and wait. Big Boss Black ran in at this moment to meow a few times. Lou Zigui looked down at him.
“His Majesty’s cat,” Shadowbolt said.
Lou Zigui beckoned to Big Boss Black, who jumped onto his leg, wild with joy.
“What is your master doing right now?” Lou Zigui asked Big Boss Black.
“She’s in the midst of confusion, ah,” Big Boss Black meowed back. “She’s heard that the Black Frost Cavalry can’t come, so Xiaoyao looks like she wants to die, miaow~”
“It’s fine as long as she’s uninjured,” Lou Zigui said as he stroked Big Boss Black’s head.
“Ninny’s not fine. Ninny wants to die right now!” Big Boss Black meowed back.
“Are you comforting me?” Lou Zigui asked Big Boss Black, who suddenly felt like dying too.
“You should be accompanying your master right now,” Lou Zigui said as he stroked Big Boss Black’s head again. How could that ninny be lonely?! Big Boss Black rolled his eyes.
“What should I do?” Lou Zigui asked Big Boss Black.
“Meow?” Big Boss Black was floored. You can’t be out of ideas at a time like this, Supreme Commander!
“......” said Shadowbolt. Supreme Commander’s actually talking to a cat. Did he go crazy from worry?!
Currently, Ning Xiaoyao was taking out the sugar beans from her pockets and sharing them with all her animal friends piece by piece. She felt a bit better with food in her stomach. After standing up and walking around the room a few times, Ning Xiaoyao told them, “The chubby Chef Huang said he’d make nourishing soup for me. How come I still haven’t seen it yet?”
Yellow Great Immortal, who just arrived recently, swallowed his sugar bean and said, “Xiaoyao, you should think of how to survive first, not worry about the soup.”
Ning Xiaoyao deflated. That’s true. If I die, how I can drink any soup?
“You don’t have any ideas?” Yellow Great Immortal asked.
Ning Xiaoyao paced around a few more circles before gritting her teeth. “I want to run.”
“Then what about Supreme Commander?” Wifey Magpie asked.
“I’ll take him with me and run,” Ning Xiaoyao replied.
“Then what about my master and the rest?” the little gyrfalcon piped up.
“Them too, together,” Ning Xiaoyao said.
“Then what about all the other people in the palace, and the Lord Protector’s family, and Elder Li and the rest?” Grandfather Sparrow asked.
“.....” said Ning Xiaoyao. Is it reasonable to expect everyone to run away together?
“The Grand Preceptor will send bad guys to pursue us, right?” the little gyrfalcon said worriedly. “Xiaoyao, can we beat him and his villains?”
Ning Xiaoyao pouted. We can’t.
All of the little animals fell silent as well. None of them had any ideas, either. Ning Xiaoyao circled the room a few more times before gritting her teeth and running out the doors. “Windy!” she yelled, “Call Supreme Commander and Second Thunder and the rest over for a meeting!”
“.......” said Shadowgale from the door. What’s going on now?
“If His Majesty can shout, that means he’s recovered from his injuries?” a young Dragon Guard asked carefully. He and rest all looked towards Shadowgale. Isn’t His Majesty severely injured? Esteemed Empress even said that he was dead. How come he’s fine after just a little while again?
“I’m fine!” Ning Xiaoyao shouted from the covered walkway. “I’m completely unharmed!”
The Dragon Guards silently agreed that His Majesty must be alright if he could shout like that. Shadowgale pointed at a few of them before running into the courtyard. Ning Xiaoyao didn’t wait, but told him with a long face, “Windy, we’re screwed.”
Shadowgale was still in the dark, so he asked in confusion, “What’s wrong?”
“Ahhhhhh,” Ning Xiaoyao tugged at his hand. “Supreme Commander was tricked by that old Grand Preceptor again!”
Shadowgale’s heart gave a lurch as he dropped his voice. “What happened?”
“The Black Frost Cavalry didn’t come,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “The person who delivered their missive to Supreme Commander was Song Xu, who betrayed us for the Grand Preceptor!”
Shadowgale knew that Song Xu had delivered a letter to the palace. When he heard this, his handsome face turned completely black.
“Let’s have a meeting,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “We have to discuss what to do next. We can’t just wait for our deaths, right?”
Of course not. Shadowgale tore out of the palace gates with a dark expression, heading for the watchtower. Ning Xiaoyao thought it over before running to the small kitchens, where Chef Huang was busy working at the counter. The sight of her gave him a fright before he asked, “Your Majesty, why did you come out?”
“Chubs Huang, how’s the nourishing soup coming along?” Ning Xiaoyao asked back.
“It still needs another two hours,” Chef Huang replied. Ning Xiaoyao puffed up her cheeks in response. Knowing that His Majesty was unhappy, Chef Huang quickly carried over a platter of freshly steamed large white mantou.
“Your Majesty, aren’t you afraid of being seen from running over here?”
“The play was all for nothing,” Ning Xiaoyao muttered.
“What?” Chef Huang grew startled. “Someone’s already discovered the lie?”
Ning Xiaoyao pursed her lips. It’s obviously Supreme Commander who got tricked, alright?
“Your Majesty, you have to tell Supreme Commander, ah,” Chef Huang said anxiously. “Perhaps he still has some way to change the situation?”
“Tell Supreme Commander?”
“Supreme Commander will definitely have a way, ah,” Chef Huang blurted out.
Ning Xiaoyao picked up the platter of mantou and prepared to leave, but Chef Huang chased after him and said, “Your Majesty, just stay in the bedrooms. Then nothing will happen!”
A flock of sheep were galloping wildly through Ning Xiaoyao’s heart. See this? Everyone has so much faith in Supreme Commander Lou. Why am I always the one at fault? Can’t they respect me as an emperor? Do they really think I’m some ninny?
“Your Majesty, why aren’t you saying anything?” Chef Huang asked. Is he feeling guilty because he did something wrong? Looking at Ning Xiaoyao’s petite frame, Chef Huang felt his heart ache before he comforted her. “It’s alright, ah, Your Majesty. Who hasn’t made mistakes before? Don’t let it weigh on your heart, it’ll be fine.”
Ning Xiaoyao sighed. “Let’s not talk about this anymore, it’s tiring. Give me another platter of mantou, my bad mood will disappear after I eat some more.”
Chef Huang’s mouth twitched. “Your Majesty, you already have 30 mantou on that tray.”
“I’m in a bad mood,” Ning Xiaoyao repeated.
Chef Huang went to get another platter of mantou from the stove. Although he had no skills to help His Majesty face off against Grand Preceptor Xie, he could at least do this.
At the watchtower, Shadowgale looked bitterly at Lou Zigui. “How could something like this happen?!”
Lou Zigui’s face was still expressionless as he admitted his wrongs. “It was my fault.”
What’s the use of admitting that now? Shadowgale glared at Lou Zigui as he took deep breaths with fists clenched. He forced himself to suppress the urge to beat the man to death and said coldly, “His Majesty wants you to go to the main audience hall.”
Lou Zigui gave a start before he blurted out, “His Majesty already knows?” He assumed that Shadowgale learned the news from Shadowbolt.
Shadowgale laughed coldly. “What? Did Supreme Commander plan on hiding the facts from His Majesty, even at a time like this?”
Lou Zigui suddenly realized that Shadowbolt could tell both Shadowgale and Miss Ning the news if he wanted. Shadowgale turned to leave, but stopped to grab Big Boss Black, who was sitting on Lou Zigui’s legs.
“Miaow?” Big Boss Black’s fur stood on end. Why are you taking me away?!
Shadowgale left the watchtower behind him as he descended the steps and scolded Big Boss Black. “You’re His Majesty’s cat. How could you spend your spare time hanging out with Lou Zigui? Just who’s your real master? If I see you getting close to him again, I’ll cut you!”
“......” said Big Boss Black. Head Commander, you’ve lost your temper.
“Walk faster!” Shadowgale turned to shout at Shadowbolt behind him. Shadowbolt’s head hung with drooped shoulders as he followed obediently.
By the time Supreme Commander Lou arrived at Ning Xiaoyao’s bedroom, all four of the Dragon Guard commanders, Deng Rong, and the other generals were all present.
“Supreme Commander, I’ll go kill Song Xu!” Deng Rong cried as soon as Lou Zigui appeared.
“Don’t, Lil’ Bro Deng, don’t be mad,” Ning Xiaoyao stuffed a mantou in his hand. “Now isn’t the time for anger. We have to think about how to survive first, alright?”
Deng Rong fell silent and viciously bit a piece of mantou. Lou Zigui walked to Ning Xiaoyao and said quietly, “I…”
Ning Xiaoyao stuffed a mantou in his hand too and said, “Sit down and talk. Eat your mantou. I’ve sent people to invite the Lord Protector and his brother too, they’ll arrive shortly.”
“What now?” Shadowgale asked.
All of the Black Frost Cavalry generals looked towards their Supreme Commander, who looked at Ning Xiaoyao and said, “Your Majesty, I’ll think of a way to send you out of the capital city first.”
“To flee?” Ning Xiaoyao asked.
“It’s only a temporary absence,” Lou Zigui replied. “I’ll stay here and settle things with Xie Wenyuan.”
“There are 100,000 soldiers, oh,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “When they kill their way here, how are you going to deal with them, Supreme Commander?”
“I’ll think of a plan then,” Lou Zigui said.
Ning Xiaoyao shook her head. “You can’t think of a plan then, but right now.”
Shadowthunder finished his mantou and asked, “Then does Your Majesty have any ideas?”
“We have two paths,” Ning Xiaoyao raised up two fingers for the crowd. “The first one has us all escaping together. The second one has us all staying to fight against Grand Preceptor Xie!”
Shadowgale grew agitated. “Your Majesty, you just said that Xie Wenyuan has 100,000 soldiers under his command, ah.”
Ning Xiaoyao bit a mouthful of mantou. “I know. Heheh, 100,000 soldiers.”
“......” said everyone else. Don’t laugh like that!