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The wind whistled as many men came down from the air before what was known as Jade Falls. They all had expressions of shock on them at the scene.
Moving from the melting icy bits on the ground to the two people she thought she knew, what she found was Zhuo Fan’s ice-cold eyes that filled her with fear, making her stagger back.
Baili Jingwei was fuming mad. His brow was shaking as understanding hit him. The nice guy persona was replaced with one of seriousness and gloom as he snapped at Zhuo Fan, “Grandmaster Gu, what exactly is this? Are you going to offer any explanation?”
Zhuo Fan smiled as his only response.
Next to arrive was Danqing Shen and Shangguan Feixiong with his three venerables. The strangeness of the situation got to them as well.
Shangguan Feixiong was looking even more perplexed at the sight of his dear daughter.
[What is going on here? What are the two of them doing here instead of the meeting place?]
It was a strange scene for sure, seeing Baili Jingwei, the pillar of the Sword Star Empire and the Shangguan clan’s top four standing side by side. They did not look to have any intention to fight at all.
The gaps in their knowledge in this situation had their basic nature overridden. Their minds were too consumed in trying to understand what went on here than killing each other in rage. All stared at the youth in front with desire to clear this conundrum.
“Yan’er, w-what’s happening here? Why did you come here?” Shangguan Feixiong’s eyes twitched, staring at his daughter.
Shangguan Qingyan winced and peeked at Zhuo Fan before turning to her father with a shrug, “Dad, I-I’m not sure myself. I only came to look for young Sanzi but who knows what really happened?”
[You don’t know either? Why are you standing here then?]
Shangguan Feixiong stared at his daughter in confusion. Baili Jingwei snorted, “Shangguan Clan Head, you’re playing the fool now? Like your clan is not the obvious culprit behind this?”
“Baili Jingwei, what’s that supposed to mean? What did we do exactly?” Shangguan Feixiong glared at him in anger, “The Shangguan clan is righteous in action, straightforward and responsible. We own our actions, but never take the fall for others. Baili Jingwei, you’d better explain yourself!”
Baili Jingwei raised a mocking eyebrow, “It doesn’t get much clearer than this. Humph, Shangguan Clan Head, I take my hat off to you. You have some serious nerves to play such a dangerous game. To steal the Soaring Sword, you used all of your clansmen as bait so Gu Yifan, a whelp, could move alone and take advantage of the light guard. Ha-ha-ha, I do respect you, this move is glorious and I know when I’m beat. It never crossed my mind that the ever righteous Clan Head of the Shangguan clan would also be a shrewd old man. Sword King Feiyun is far stronger than sir, but had no chance still in winning the head position from you. This explains why, humph.”
Shangguan Feixiong was taken aback, more confused than ever. The venerables shouted, “Baili Jingwei, enough of your bullshit! Our Clan Head has always been kind and righteous, discussing with the elders before using his position. He’s not shady and cruel as you shamelessly claim him to be! Shangguan Feiyun failed to win the head position due to his overconfidence and failure to get the public support. There’s no conspiracy here at all. Baili Jingwei, let’s fight if you want, but don’t try staining our Clan Head’s good name or us three will put you in your place!”
Baili Jingwei mocked, “I did take Clan Head to have a big heart until now. But with his board open to me, his ruthlessness exposed, willing to use the blood of hundreds of his clansmen just for the sake of getting Soaring Sword, he’s nothing more than a Clan Head with a nation ruler’s designs. That’s no gentleman if I ever saw one.”
As Baili Jingwei’s revulsion became more apparent, the venerables grew more pissed. Shangguan Feixiong was still lost in a deep fog.
[What did I do? How am I suddenly shameless and devious like a ruler?]
[I’m just a cultivator, valuing heart, morals and integrity. How am I suddenly like those mortals?]
Danqing Shen kept his realizations to himself, hiding a grin. He only peeked at Zhuo Fan to see him enjoying the drama.
[The brat toyed with these big men to the end, ha-ha-ha…]
There were more visitors coming, interrupting each sides’ nagging. After uselessly guarding his designated spot the better part of night, Shangguan Feiyun finally joined the ruckus here.
He didn’t even register the cold looks he gained all around, opting for just standing there, frozen, and watching where the usual grand Jade Falls had to be, only to find it gone.
And, like everyone else, maybe more even, he flew off the handle, “W-what the hell is going on here? Where’s my paradise? Where is the Jade Falls? Where is it?”
Baili Jingwei rolled his eyes, his tone biting, “Is this the time to be concerned with some water park, Sword King Feiyun? The problem here is the Soaring Sword!”
“Oh, right, the Soaring Sword. Since the water’s gone, where is the sword?”
Shangguan Feiyun shook awake and glared at everyone present like they each owed him a fortune. He finally chose to rest that savage gaze on his brother, “Old coot, return the Soaring Sword if you know what’s good for you. Do it now while I still consider you kin!”
Shangguan Feixiong’s face twitched hard, wanting nothing more than to snap back at this traitor.
[Soaring Sword belongs to eastern lands, not your personal item. It’s all in my right to take it back.]
Though it was sensible to gauge the precarious circumstances and keep it to himself. Would he just admit that he had it by saying that? Fighting again without even knowing the reason behind it would make them look like a joke.
[The third party who has the sword will be having the time of his life at our expense.]
Shangguan Feixiong thus ignored the blatant threat and taunt, and instead said in a dark tone, “I don’t have it.”
“Who else is there? Humph, stop playing the goddamn fool! Who’d believe you?” Shangguan Feiyun mocked.
Shangguan Feixiong’s face darkened.
Baili Jingwei smirked, “Shangguan Clan Head, please stop playing word games with me. It might not be on you, but with another. But isn’t he on your side all the same?”
Baili Jingwei pointed at Zhuo Fan in anger.
All eyes snapped on the youth, but Shangguan Feixiong actually chuckled at that.
“Prime Minister Baili, you got it all twisted. Soaring Sword only sees Shangguan clansmen and not nobodies.” Shangguan Feiyun snorted.
Shangguan Feixiong had to agree as well.
Soaring Sword was quite willful and only liked those it spent a long time with. It did not just up and accept some brat it barely saw.
Baili Jingwei still looked convinced of his speculation. “The central area has the Sundering Sword so of course I know a divine weapon’s temper. I just have a feeling that Grandmaster Gu can take the divine weapon regardless of not being part of the Shangguan clan. Aren’t I right, Grandmaster Gu?”
Zhuo Fan’s eyebrows rose and regarded Big Dipper Striking Array with a devious smile. He ignored everyone as he walked up to the Big Dipper Striking Array.
“Prime Minister Baili sure is sharp about everything, ha-ha-ha…”
“So you do have the divine sword!”
Baili Jingwei cried out, his bloodthirst increasing. Shangguan Feixiong’s group looked at Zhuo Fan in shock.
[H-how? He’s no Shangguan clansman…]