Nightfall - Chapter 409

Published at 2nd of September 2018 12:15:17 AM

Chapter 409: The Men Who Are Not Easily Fooled

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Ning Que looked at Sangsang who was cooking in the backyard when he heard that. After a moment of silence, he shook his head and said, "To be honest, I still think that this situation is ludicrous. I have watched her grow up, and I know that she is special. But I did not expect her to be so special to have the West-Hill Divine Palace come to us."

Cheng Lixue said, "Even if Junior Sister Sangsang was the most ordinary person on earth, she became extraordinary from the moment Haotian chose her through the God of Light. As for us, we will definitely work in accordance with Haotian's will and will definitely bring her back to the Divine Hall."

"I do not like to hear words like 'definitely' or this kind of tone."

Ning Que looked at the teacup in his hands and said after a moment, "This makes me feel as if you guys are threatening me. And I will think that you are trying to steal her away from me."

Cheng Lixue looked at him and said, "You can understand this from a different point of view."

Ning Que drank the cold tea and said mockingly, "How should I understand it since you are definitely going to take her back to the Divine Hall? Will you not do it if I disagree?"

Cheng Lixue shook his head, "The throne of the God of Light cannot remain empty."

Ning Que put down his cup and looked into Cheng Lixue's eyes. He said, "What would the Divine Hall do if I insist on disagreeing?"

Cheng Lixue heard the steel in his words. After a brief silence, he said with a smile,"You should know very well what the God of Light means to Haotian Taoism and the West-Hill Divine Palace."

"I don't know very well." Ning Que continued staring at him and asked, "Would the Divine Hall fight for her?"

Cheng Lixue smiled at him without flinching. He said calmly, "If the successor of the God of light ends up somewhere else in the world, the Divine Hall would wash the world with blood just to take that person back."

Ning Que replied, "Since you have already said that the Divine Hall would only do that if the successor ends up somewhere else, I am sure that you yourself, as well as all the other bigwigs in the Divine Hall, would all know that Sangsang is currently in Chang'an by my side."

After a pause, Chen Lixue said, "So I am here to invite Junior Sister Sangsang back."

"Invite sounds somewhat nicer."

Ning Que said, "But I want to ascertain how determined the Divine Hall is."

Cheng Lixue frowned and looked at him, "You want to know if the Divine Hall would wage war over this? Against the Academy? Do you think that the Tang Empire and the Academy would battle against the Divine Hall over Junior Sister Sangsang?"

Ning Que thought about the blood and warfare in Chang'an many years ago and of General Xiahou who was alive and kicking. After a silent pause, he shook his head, "The Empire and the Academy would not wage a war against the Divine Hall over a mere girl. But if you take her from me by force, I can tell you that the Empire and the Academy would be embroiled in this war."

Cheng Lixue's expression turned cold. He had only realized now that to Ning Que, Sangsang was not simply a handmaiden that Ning Que had known for a long time. And it was only now, did he realize that Ning Que would move heaven and earth for Junior Sister Sangsang.

"Why would the Tang Empire and the Academy wage war against the Divine Hall for you?" He scolded sternly, "Are the Headmaster of the Academy and the Emperor of Tang shameless people who would create chaos just for your selfish desires?"

Ning Que's expression did not change as he looked at Cheng Lixue, "Do not forget who I am. Should that day really come, I have my ways to bring the Academy and the Tang Empire into this war."

There was a long deadly silence in Old Brush Pen Shop.

Cheng Lixue smiled bitterly at him, "Why can't you think on the bright side? Junior Sister Sangsang is not going to the West-Hill to be a prisoner or to suffer. On the contrary, she will receive a complete education on Haotian Taoism. She will become the most revered God of Light on the Peach Mountain. This would not be detrimental to the Tang Empire, the Academy or to you, so why should we fight?"

Was it out of his own selfish desire to have Sangsang serve him for her entire life? Was that the reason for disallowing Sangsang from going to the West-Hill Divine Palace and becoming the Great Divine Priest of Light?

Ning Que looked at the loose leaves in his teacup and thought silently for a long time.

Then, he suddenly raised his head and said, "Let me think about it."

Cheng Lixue looked into his eyes seriously, "The God of Revelation cannot stay in Chang'an for long. I hope that you can consider this seriously and not make excuses to fool me."



That night, Ning Que brought Sangsang to the Grand Secretary Mansion.

Mrs. Zeng was exhilarated to see her daughter whom she had not seen in days. She pulled her into the house at the back and left Ning Que and Grand Secretary Zeng Jing in the quiet study.

"What do you think of this matter, Sir?"

Ning Que asked seriously. He wanted to find some moral support from the Grand Secretary's expression, such as the longing a parent has for their child. However, he realized that it was just wishful thinking.

Grand Secretary Zeng Jing did look like he would miss Sangsang, but he looked more excited and surprised before looking overwhelmed and lost. To the believers of Haotian, or even a citizen of Tang, it was a glory to suddenly discover that their child could become the Great Divine Priest of Light of West-Hill Divine Palace.

"I was thinking if I should return to my hometown and fix up the ancestral shrine. Would such a great thing happen to our family had our ancestors not been watching over us? If we fix it up, we have to change the entire structure of it. Even though it is not written in the laws of the Tang Empire, if we follow what the Great Divine Priest of West-Hill of the Cui family from Qinghe County did a hundred years ago, the Zeng's ancestral shrine can be built like the prince's.

Grand Secretary Zeng Jing's face shone brilliantly and he said with a slightly trembling voice. "We are in the lands of the Tang Empire and have to follow the rules of the Empire. If we were in the South Jin Kingdom or the Kingdom of Song, we can even build our ancestral shrine like the emperor's. Mr. Thirteen, how do you think I've come across such a blessing in my life?"

He suddenly noticed Ning Que's reticence and laughed awkwardly. He said, "My apologies, I got a little overexcited. But, I'm still better than that clan leader of the Cuis from Qinghe County. I heard that when news of the West-Hill's choice of Great Divine Priest broke, the clan leader was so excited he turned into an idiot."

Ning Que smiled bitterly and said, "Being the West-Hill Great Divine Priest... Is that really all that great?"

Zeng Jing was startled and shock filled his face. He thought to himself, that Ning Que was the core disciple of the Headmaster of the Academy. Why would he ask such a dumb and ludicrous question?

To those of the world, being able to become the Great Divine Priest of West-Hill was something that was even better than becoming the Emperor. Was there anything better in the world than that?

Zeng Jing suddenly emerged from his daze and looked at him incredulously, "Do you not want Sangsang to go to West-Hill?"

Ning Que kept silent for a long time before he replied, "It is not that I do not want her to go, I just haven't thought it over."

Zeng Jing said with a tremor in his voice, "Mr. Thirteen, you have saved my daughter from harm and cared for her over the years. I am very grateful for that. I also know that the relationship between you and my daughter is beyond that of master and servant. But I have to ask that you seriously consider this and not make a rash decision."

Ning Que did not say anything.

Zeng Jing thought of a possibility but did not think that it was plausible. He tugged at his beard and hesitated for a while before saying tentatively in a low voice, "I heard that the Gods are allowed to wed."

Ning Que whipped his head up to look at him. He asked, "Really?"

Zeng Jing looked at his suddenly bright eyes and was shocked. Could his wife's predictions be right?

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Thinking that the prediction might actually be true, Zeng Jing forgot the fact that Ning Que was a student of the Second floor of the Academy for a moment and held himself up like an elder. He stroked his beard and asked, "If Sangsang doesn't go to the West-Hill, what are Mr. Thirteen's plans for my poor daughter?"

Ning Que did not notice the change in Zeng Jing's expression and he said, "I will marry her when she turns 16."

Zeng Jing's hand that was stroking his beard trembled and three strands of his beard fell off.

He had not expected Ning Que to say that he would marry Sangsang without hesitation just as he was about to speak and debate.

"Main wife?"

Zeng Jing's voice trembled as he asked.

Ning Que shook his head.

Zeng Jing grew angry.

Ning Que said after he shook his head, "Of course she is my main wife, could she be my side wife?"

Zeng Jing relaxed and he asked smilingly, "Will you take concubines?"

Ning Que said bitterly, "I wish, do you think that's possible?"

Zeng Jing's smile grew even wider. His daughter could become the main wife of a core disciple of the Headmaster of the Academy. And the man had promised not to take concubines. It seems that it was worth it not to become the Great Divine Priest of West-Hill if his daughter had a future like this.

"Since this is so, then you shall decide if Sangsang goes to the West-Hill."

Grand Secretary Zeng Jing had always been a decisive person. Otherwise, he would not have used his position in the Qinghe County, even against the will of Her Majesty, to divorce his main wife and kill the servants after they hurt Sangsang.

When he heard Ning Que's words, he thought about the pros and cons of the two choices. Then, he did not hesitate to remove himself and his wife from the equation, leaving Ning Que to handle all the pressure.

Ning Que said bitterly, "Shouldn't the family discuss this matter?"

Zeng Jing touched his tender chin and shook his head, "Sangsang is still officially registered under your family. And the connection you have with her is deep. Sir should make the decision no matter no matter whether we look at it rationally or emotionally."

Ning Que suddenly realized that his future father-in-law wasn't a character that could be easily fooled.

Zeng Jing smiled to himself coldly as he thought to himself, "Don't think that you can trick me into denying the West-Hill Divine Palace's request just because you are a student of the Second floor of the Academy."

The night deepened.

Mrs. Zeng brought Sangsang from the house behind with a face full of longing.

Zeng Jing pulled his wife aside and whispered something to her. Mrs. Zeng covered her mouth in shock. When she looked at Ning Que again, her expression was widely different and she looked at him with great affection.

"I thought that Sir might visit often, so I have ordered the servants to clear out a guestroom."

Mrs. Zeng smiled sweetly at Ning Que, saying, "Why don't you rest here tonight."

Ning Que felt as if he had traveled into the world of strange stories and had the urge to flee.

"I still have something urgent to deal with."

He stood up and told Sangsang to stay at the Scholar's Mansion to accompany her parents and then left.

He went to the second street by the Spring Breeze Pavilion.

Chao Xiaoshu's house was on this street.



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