Book 6 Chapter 10 Night Visit at a Mansion House
Teng Qingshan’s room at the inn, night-time.
The door was closed and the room was completely dark. In this pitch-black room, Teng Qingshan, dressed in a black suit, was practicing the Three Postures of the Xing Yi Martial Arts with his eyes closed. Teng Qingshan was practicing in every small corner and spaces in the room
His steps were sometimes big and sometimes small.
The speed of his punches varied as well.
However, there was a certain peculiar coordination, just like floating clouds and flowing water——natural and smooth.
Teng Qingshan practiced the Three Postures every night. After cultivating Internal Martial Arts to such a high realm, even practicing the Five Element Boxing wasn’t effective anymore. Yet this Three Postures, seemingly so simple, gave Teng Qingshan the feeling of balanced Yin and Yang, and of a harmonious and coherent realm.
Teng Qingshan opened his eyes and rapidly went in front of the window. Looking through a hole in the paper window, he clearly saw a blurry figure leaping in the distance.
“This Ma Jinxiao has finally departed.” Teng Qingshan covered his face with a black cloth and opened the window. As he performed ‘Crossing World’, he seemed to have transformed into an illusion-like figure. With two flashes, the illusion-like figure disappeared from the inn. In terms of speed and stealth, it was obvious that Teng Qingshan was much better than Ma Jinxiao.
Ma Jinxiao in front and Teng Qingshan following behind him, they leaped onto roofs and vaulted over walls. However, Teng Qingshan made no sounds whatsoever. Thus, Ma Jinxiao did not take notice of being followed at all.
It was still early night. The streets of the county city were still in a bustle. Numerous lanterns illuminated the street, making it very bright.
Teng Qingshan and Ma Jinxiao dashed out of a shadowy place and sped northward.
Soon, they left the bustling area and arrived in a region with mansions that only the rich or those with important positions could afford.
“Where is this Ma Jinxiao going?” thought Teng Qingshan to himself, feeling very confused. After being in contact with Ma Jinxiao these days, Teng Qingshan felt that he was a person of good character. He was very unassuming in his manner and valued his disciple, Tan He. Yet, the words that Ma Jinxiao told his disciple this evening had attracted Teng Qingshan’s attention.
It was obvious that Ma Jinxiao was about to do something great, which could possibly even cost him his life.
Since Teng Qingshan had the power, he decided to lend a hand.
“Oh. Looks like it’s the mansion ahead.” When Teng Qingshan saw Ma Jinxiao jump into the yard of one of the mansions, he followed stealthily.
This mansion occupied a broad piece of land. Manmade hills, flowers, grass, and other plants covered its every area. Inside, there were many patrolling guards, lanterns in hand.
“Eh? These guards? They are the Immortal Guards of Xiao Yao Palace?” Teng Qingshan instantly distinguished the identities of these patrolling guards. Everyone knew the uniforms of the elite armies of the Eight Supreme Sects in the great land of the Nine Prefectures. Most of the elite armies wore black, with slight differences.
Take the Immortal Guards, for example. The most conspicuous part of the Immortal Guards’ heavy armors was the sword-shaped mark on the shoulder piece.
“To be able to make the Immortal Guards of Xiao Yao Palace work as the guards of the mansion house, the owner of this mansion must be someone of high status!” Pondering, Teng Qingshan followed Ma Jinxiao quietly and sneaked into the deeper areas of the mansion…… As for the so-called ‘Immortal Guards…’ Even Golden Dan innate experts were unable to notice Teng Qingshan, let alone these so-called ‘Elite Guards.’”
At a manmade hill.
Whee! Teng Qingshan stealthily hid behind the man-made mountain.
“What is Ma Jinxiao doing? He’s just standing there, not moving at all?” Teng Qingshan glanced into the distance. Ma Jinxiao was hiding behind another man-made hill, staring at the great hall of the house in front of them.
The great hall in the distance was very bright, and loud laughter resounded from within. Many people were drinking and eating while maids carried delicious food to the great hall.
“It looks like Ma Jinxiao’s target should be in the great hall.” Teng Qingshan leisurely listened to the sounds in the great hall.
“I, Old Qiao, am really happy that you all, my brothers, can live in my house. This mansion of mine is not small, it just doesn’t have many people. Elders, Protectors, and Second Martial Brother, do live here for a longer period of time!” A laughter resounded.
In the hall, there were six people sitting around a rectangular table. The table top was made by cutting and grinding the smooth Clearflow Rock. The plates on the table looked very exquisite. Each pair of chopsticks had been meticulously carved by craftsmen, and beautiful jugs filled with good wine were placed at the side.The six people were obviously eating very happily.
“Sixth Martial Brother! You are living very comfortably in this Huyue County City!” A middle-aged man with white eyebrows laughed, saying, “Unlike us, who stay on the mountain all-year-round. We aren’t living as leisurely as you.”
“I know, right? We are able to get good wine in Xiao Yao Palace, but we don’t have such delicious food. Xiao Yao Palace won’t hire a group of chefs especially for us elders and protectors,” the thin middle-aged man dressed in a white cloak said with a smile.
“Don’t tease me anymore.”
The fat middle-aged man laughed and said, “After so many years, I am still a lieutenant! I also have to travel often, unlike you all who can stay in the palace all-year-long. Especially Second Martial Brother…… In the past, among us nine martial brothers, Second Martial Brother is the most powerful one, having reached the Innate Realm. Second Martial Brother, my grandson is eleven this year. He is still learning basic sword arts and learning to cultivate inner strength, but his performance is very good. He is stronger than me and my son where we were young! Second Martial Brother, please accept him into your unit.”
When the white-browed man heard this, he smiled and said, “You mean Little Anan? Yes, that child is smart. How’s this? After everything goes back to normal, I will move him to the branch under me. I will teach him often…… At least, Little Anan will be stronger than you, lazy one!”
The fat middle-aged man laughed, “I am lazy. That’s my nature.”
“Elder Sikong.” The silver-haired old man seated frowned and said, “When do you think it will be over?”
When the white-browed man heard, he became silent.
“I really don’t know why that Godly Hawk wanted to attack Xiao Yao Palace. It’s having everyone in a state of anxiety. Now, so many people in Xiao Yao Palace were forced to descend the mountain,” the thin man dressed in a white cloak said unhappily.
The fat middle-aged man said solemnly, “This kind of Godly Beast is as smart as humans. It wouldn’t attack Xiao Yao Palace without any reason….. When did Xiao Yao Palace offend this Godly Beast?”
“Leave it be.” The white-browed man frowned and said, “This Godly Beast has provoked Xiao Yao Palace many times. The Old Palace Lord will definitely solve this issue.
When the other five people heard the words ‘Old Palace Lord,’ they all nodded.
Actually, Xiao Yao Palace is in a miserable state. The Godly Hawk had forced many people to leave Xiao Yao Palace, making them live in the county city nearby. This was because…… the three thunderbolts that the godly hawk had released made Xiao Yao Palace lose many people.
Facing the thunderbolt released by the Godly Thunderbolt Hawk, Xiao Yao Palace could only retreat first!
Therefore, these Protectors, Elders and Law Enforcing Elders could only dwell temporarily in the residences of the other martial brothers or sisters living in the county city.
Because the doors of the hall were open, Teng Qingshan managed to hear some parts of the conversation.
“Tsk, tsk. Xiao Yao Palace’s situation is quite tragic.” Teng Qingshan laughed secretly, thinking, “It looks like that Godly Thunderbolt Hawk has forced many experts to live in the county city, which was why the Immortal Guards scattered to protect the mansions!” Teng Qingshan glanced at Ma Jinxiao in the distance.
Ma Jinxiao was waiting silently like a beast hunting for its prey.
A very long time had passed. Finally, along with some laughter, the six people finally separated at the doors of the great hall.
“Haha, Brother Dong. Look at you! You aren’t even walking steadily. Do you need me to escort you back?”
The leader of the mansion, namely the fat middle-aged man, laughed and shouted. He watched the five men walk back to their own rooms. After that, he ordered, “Clear all of these away. Clean it! Pass my order……Tomorrow’s breakfast must still be a feast of the highest grade!”
“Yes, Old Master.” The two maids hastily went to clean the great hall.
As for this old master, he proudly hummed a tune, heading towards his own room.
Ma Jinxiao stealthily followed the fat middle-aged man, while Teng Qingshan stealthily followed Ma Jinxiao.
In a gloomy hallway.
The fat middle-aged man was in a very good mood. He swayed as he walked, saying to himself, “It’s rare for Second Martial Brother to come to my mansion. Tsk, tsk. He is the Law Enforcing Elder. This is a rare chance! I must entertain him well. Yes……Which lady’s room should I go to tonight? The coquettish young girl that came recently is too fierce, I should find——”
While he was still thinking about women, he suddenly felt pain at his neck.
The room beside the hallway was smashed open and the fat middle-aged man was forced into the room with his throat gripped. With a “creak” sound, the door of the room was closed.
“You! Who are you?” The fat middle-aged man immediately spoke as soon as he felt the grip on his throat loosen.
He didn’t dare to shout!
To be able to control him, an expert that had already reached the peak of the Postliminary Realm, the person had to be…… more powerful than the figures ranked top ten in the «Earthly Ranking». Maybe…… he was an innate expert!
“Look at my appearance carefully,” the person said, waving his hand and lighting a candle with a match.
“I don’t know you.” The fat middle-aged man frowned, asking, “Did you get the wrong person?” As the lieutenant of the Immortal Guards, he was clearly aware of the situation now.
“Qiao Zhong!” Ma Jinxiao glared at the fat middle-aged man and yelled, “Don’t say that you are not Qiao Zhong.”
The fat middle-aged man froze for a second.
“Yes, I am Qiao Zhong. I am Qiao Zhong, the lieutenant of the Immortal Guards,” the fat middle-aged man answered.
“Oh? You have been promoted to lieutenant?” Ma Jinxiao said, sneering.
“I have been lieutenant for over a dozen years.” The fat middle-aged man looked at Ma Jinxiao with a puzzled expression as he said, “I don’t know you…… I don’t know how I offended you. Can you tell me clearly?”
At this moment, Teng Qingshan was on the rooftop. He put his ears close to the roof as he listened carefully.
“Ah!” A deep, painful scream resounded within the room.
“Eh? Did Ma Jinxiao kill Qiao Zhong?” Teng Qingshan could distinguish that the person who had shouted had his mouth covered, which was why the sound had not been too loud. Suddenly, a deep-sounding voice came from within the room——
“Qiao Zhong. I have destroyed your martial arts. You do not need to talk. Just listen and you will soon know…… why I came to find you.” His voice sounded cold and ghastly.