Chapter 236 Scary Night
The assassination of the Unique King was unsuccessful. But the following massacre was investigated for a long time without anyone figuring out what started it.
In the West Castle, not far from the eighth young lord’s courtyard, there was an alley where most of the people that lived there were counselors of White Clothes Yard. Like the killers, they followed different young lords and were spokesmen for the young lords in the castle.
When the Unique King knocked the assassin up with his palm attack and Luo Ningcha’s scream rang throughout almost half of Golden Roc Castle, the three most important counselors almost heard a warning from the window at the same time: The King Lord was assassinated and dead.
Luo Ningcha had scared the hell out of herself and kept screaming for a long while, which became the best footnote for the mysterious figures’ reminder.
The first reaction of Luo Ningcha was not that someone had come to assassin the King Lord, but that Madam Meng had sent someone to kill her. Crying and screaming, she held onto King Lord’s arm and kept yelling in horror that ‘She’s going to kill me’.
Shangguan Fa saw Luo Ningcha’s true face for the first time and couldn’t help but become a bit surprised and disgusted, and finally understood why his eighth son Shangguan Nu would have steeled his heart to leave such a matchless beauty and betrayed the castle. Luo Ningcha’s gaffe, however, saved her life. Shangguan Fa ruled her out first when trying to determine the mastermind behind the scene.
Shangguan Fa even wasted some precious time comforting his eighth daughter-in-law before he quickly left. Although the Unique King’s lechery had already been an open secret in the castle, he himself was still concerned about his face.
What happened next was completely out of Shangguan Fa’s expectation.
He had gone to the inner chamber and as usual, had given the order in secret to search the castle. But he hadn’t expected the news that ‘the King Lord is dead’ had spread so quickly and had been believed by so many people.
None of the second, fifth, sixth, and seventh young lords had taken the castle as a safe home, and they had been on guard against each other to the state of extreme nervousness. Alliance and betrayal could happen in an instant, and even a word or a look could arouse rich emotions and lead to a bloody fight. The fragile balance relied solely on the Unique King’s ban on killing.
Not everyone believed the news that the ‘King Lord was assassinated and dead’. In fact, most people doubted it without seeing the corpse, but they were all worried about one thing. Someone might make use of the news of the King Lord’s death to strike first, so they themselves had better take the initiative to gain the upper hand.
It was a melee. The fifth young lord attacked the second young lord, the sixth young lord sneakily attacked the fifth young lord, the seventh young lord rushed into the inner chamber to kill Madam Meng, and Madam Meng wanted to wipe them all out.
By the time the Unique king realized that the situation was out of control, the slaughter was already halfway done, and no one’s orders could stop it. Shangguan Fa sent out a large number of elite killers direct under his command and even let several green-faced move out to patrol around and declare that the King Lord was uninjured. The ones who refused to listen were cruelly suppressed.
The riot in the castle was finally put down in the early morning. It was a ridiculous slaughter that had caused the death of dozens of people, including the sixth and seventh young lords.
The Unique King became furious. He imprisoned his second and fifth son on the spot and deprived Madam Meng of all power. After a thorough search and investigation, he found that the culprit was surprisingly the same assassin who had escaped the hunt and disappeared without a trace.
Gu Shenwei survived, partly by luck and partly by someone’s help.
Shangguan Fa had gotten entangled in Luo Ningcha, which gave the assassin the space to rush out of the bedroom. Gu Shenwei had just jumped onto the roof before he was targeted by a green-faced assassin. He didn’t want to check his sabresmanship at the moment, so he ran headlong towards the outside. The green-faced followed closely behind him like a shadow.
Gu Shenwei couldn’t outrun the green-faced assassin, but an unexpected man appeared and saved him.
As usual, the stableman Elder Zhang was in the stable at midnight. He shuddered at Luo Ningcha’s scream and for the first time in his life, he had a heroic ambition to save the beauty. Holding the straw chopper, he ran out with malice written all over his face. But he was a bit slow and happened to miss the killer but block the green-faced assassin.
Just like this, Elder Zhang died under the saber of the green-faced assassin. If he were the one he used to be, he would have definitely hidden in the stable and kept quiet. Just for the mistress lifting one layer of her veil, he had paid for it with his life. And the one he wanted to save actually didn’t need to be saved at all, and instead the one he didn’t care for got a chance of survival.
The green-faced assassin was only delayed for a very short time and hardly stopped. But this was enough for him to fail in catching the assassin.
Gu Shenwei should be thankful for the ‘assassination’ game he had played with Shangguan Ru and Shangguan Yushi two years ago. They had almost run around every corner of the castle at that time and become very familiar with all the alleys, even more familiar than many people who were born in the castle.
Gu Shenwei jumped into a courtyard from a low wall. After the green-faced pursuing him passed by, he immediately ran back to the eighth young lord’s courtyard. He was just about to enter his room before he saw Lotus next door waving at him.
There were too many unexpected things this night. Without any time to think about them, Gu Shenwei immediately slipped into Lotus’s room.
“Get on the bed,” Lotus ordered with a low voice.
Gu Shenwei jumped onto the bed, took off his night clothes and mask under the quilt, and threw them to Lotus.
Lotus didn’t panic in the face of tension. She carefully folded the outfit and put it together with hers.
“My sword … is still in the backyard.”
“Forget about it.”
As soon as Lotus finished, a group of people rushed into the yard and someone loudly ordered, “Everyone, stay in the room, don’t you come out!”
At this time, the slaughter among the young lords had not yet begun. Shangguan Fa only wanted to find the assassin, so the first place those night watchers investigated was the front yard of the eighth young lord.
“Where’s Servant Huan? Why is he not in his room?”
Lotus walked to the door and said, “He’s at my place.”
The door was violently pushed open, two night watchers stuck their heads out and quickly glanced at Servant Huan in the bed, then their hands holding the saber loosened. They had seen a lot about the affairs between the killers and would not make a fuss about it.
“What’s going on? I heard a scream from the backyard and was just about to go there.” As he pretended to be flustered, Gu Shenwei sat up, covered himself with the quit, and looked for his narrow saber everywhere.
“Stay out of the matter in the backyard,” one night watcher said. Then he turned to ask, “Has Servant Huan been here all night?”
Horrified, Servant Xin’s head popped out, “It should be. I came on the second night watch period to ask if Lord Yang has any orders. He was not in his room, so I stayed there.”
Gu Shenwei was taken aback. Lotus must have known that Servant Xin was sleeping next door, and only then let Servant Huan into her room. Gu Shenwei would have run into Servant Xin if she hadn’t helped him, and the cowardly servant would definitely not have covered for his lord.
“He’s been with me the whole time,” said Lotus coldly before closing the door in the presence of the night watchers.
The two didn’t speak for a while, just listening to the inquiries outside. When the other places erupted into chaos and all the night watchers went to put down the riot, the eighth young lord’s courtyard quieted down instead. What Madam Meng and the young lords competed for was the throne. Luo Ningcha wasn’t a threat to them at all, so no one wanted to come to kill her.
But Luo Ningcha was still in shock. As soon as the night watchers left, she ordered Servant Huan and Lotus to go to the backyard to protect her.
Gu Shenwei hadn’t found a chance to explain to Lotus. Lotus, who had taken advantage of the chaos to retrieve the sword on the beam and return it to him, also didn’t ask.
The teacher Zhang Ji was much wiser than Gu Shenwei had imagined. Using the piece of information revealed by Servant Huan, the counselor, who had deeply concealed his ability, had plotted the whole mess. He had not only eliminated two brothers of Shangguan Hong but also suppressed several other competitors for his lord without even striking a blow.
Thus, apart from Gu Shenwei himself, there were at least two people in the castle who knew the identity of the assassin of last night. He trusted Lotus but was unsure of Zhang Ji.
Zhang Ji made it clear in a simple way to the killer that he would keep the secret. Every few days, a part-time businessman in the castle would deliver a bottle of good wine from Southwall Tavern to the old teacher. This businessman had been given a large sum of money, enough for him to send the wine for a year. Zhang Ji usually accepted all this without a word, but this time he made an exception. He asked his little bookkeeper to send a letter with gentle diction to express his thanks for his disciple’s deeds of respecting the teacher.
Zhang Ji still hoped that a killer could defect to Shangguan Hong. The son of the Unique King he was assisting was too weak. They could have achieved more in last night’s massacre, but Shangguan Hong hadn’t been able to show his ability. He could only cautiously stay around Madam Meng to show his loyalty and support.
Later, Shangguan Hong also didn’t get much of a reward. The Unique King didn’t even notice the existence of this son. And although Madam Meng had been suppressed by the King Lord like the other young lords, she was far from being reduced to asking for Shangguan Hong’s help.
Gu Shenwei felt a little relieved.
Although the Unique King didn’t believe that the assassin’s target was Luo Ningcha, he still sent out ten killers and twenty sabremen to protect her. The eighth young lord’s courtyard, therefore, became one of the safest places in the castle. Gu Shenwei spent two solid days there until the persistent ‘hound’ followed the scent and came to the door.
Shangguan Fa swore to find out the assassin and the mastermind behind the scene. For this reason, he released Shen Liang, the Sabrelord of Washing Heart Yard.
The Unique King’s praise of his eighth son Shangguan Nu was only superficial, so Shen Liang had been imprisoned. But no one was better than Sabrelord Shen when it came to seeing through plots and tracking down the murderer, and thus he got a chance to get back on his feet.
After regaining control of Washing Heart Yard, Shen Liang quickly acted and arrested a large number of people. He must have spied on Servant Huan for quite some time, but the sudden rise of the eighth young mistress made him cautious enough not to lay his hands on him right away. Instead, he waited two more days before personally coming to question him.
Luo Ningcha must have been pressured to not obstruct the people of Washing Heart Yard this time. Her only request was that the interrogation should be performed at the eighth young lord’s courtyard and that it would be better if Servant Huan didn’t have a problem. But if he did, she hoped that Sabrelord Shen could take prompt action.
Shen Liang naturally understood the eighth young mistress’s intentions and agreed on the surface, but he had made up his mind that unless he could force all the information out of Servant Huan, he would not let this kid die early.
“It’s just a simple questioning. Basically, everyone in the castle has to take it,” Shen Liang said with confidence.
“Ok,” Gu Shenwei quietly answered. Without being allowed to wear his saber and sword, he felt like he had lost more than half of his martial arts skills.
“Where were you on the night of the King Lord’s assassination?”
“In Lotus’s room.”
“For what?” Shen Liang seemed to deliberately ask while knowing the answer. In fact, he was well prepared and believed that he would find some clues from Servant Huan’s reply. But he had never expected that he would hear such an answer.
“I have a Qi deviation, and she has been trying to help me cure it.”
Shen Liang grabbed the killer’s shoulder and immediately found that something wasn’t right. This killer’s internal energy was very weak, even inferior to an average sabreman’s, not to mention a Golden Roc killer’s.
Gu Shenwei was telling the truth. There was something that even he himself hadn’t expected, like the breakout of the two Desolate Finger Energy in his body at the same time, which had almost cost him his life.
This Qi Deviation was directly related to Shangguan Fa’s palm strike.