AST 1595 - No Favorable Turn, Two Days, Niu Clan’s Arena
It still wasn’t late by the time Qing Shui came out from his shower but Lan Lingfeng and Yin Tong were already in the hall. The three of them laughed as their eyes made contact. It was true that women took a long time to shower, it was the same wherever he was. While the husband could take a quick wash, women needed petals, scents and so forth.
After almost half an hour, a few women came back down in succession and the dishes on the table had changed to a new menu.
When Qing Shui returned, the matter at Sea King’s Palace had resolved perfectly. Even though he hadn’t eliminated the Dark Demonic Jiao straight away, it had vanished from the Imperial City of Sea King’s Palace. If nothing went wrong, it wouldn’t appear there ever again.
Everyone in this room was a warrior of martial arts and so, the scene from earlier wasn’t a big deal, forgettable in just a moment. This was the adaptability of the Main Continent. Since such affairs were normal, you wouldn’t feel too shocked or afraid anymore.
“I’m afraid we won’t be able to reconcile with Niu Clan. Everyone, be careful,” Lan Lingfeng said and sipped his wine.
“Niu Clan must have a backer, or at least, Niu Fen does. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have been this obnoxious. The clan should have realized our identity as well, just as we found out about theirs,” Yin Tong said after pondering.
The women knew of their background, that they were all successors of Battle God Inheritance. With some consideration, they agreed to Yin Tong’s conclusions. The Demon King and Battle God were antagonistic towards each other, if Qing Shui and the others had realized what they were, there was no way they could have remained oblivious.
Qing Shui smiled. He realized that the refinement during this period of time had shown clearly through Yin Tong’s improvement. His analysis of the happenings was clearer and sharper. It was no wonder he was the successor of Fox Battle God Inheritance.
“Brother Yin is right. Not only do I think the other party has found out about us, but I think there may be others around. They must have provoked us on purpose and Ms Ziche was just an excuse. They are doing this to aggravate the three of us.” Qing Shui smiled.
“Brother-in-law, you can still smile about it?” Xue Nuo said as she watched his easy smile.
“Little girl, will you only be satisfied if you see us cry?” Qing Shui looked at Xue Nuo.
That silenced Xue Nuo. She was easily agitated by Qing Shui’s words now and attempted to calm herself down. She had already embraced the facts and didn’t expect anything. This was good too, there was always someone to dote on and pamper her.
“It seems that we can only quietly watch for anything stirring these three days and monitor Niu Clan’s movements.” Lan Lingfeng frowned.
Yin Tong nodded, “That sounds like the best option for us now.”
“And if there’s no reaction?”
“That won’t happen. We have stated our stance today, and Niu Fen did this for Niu Clan’s pride. If there aren’t any special circumstances, they won’t just endure it in silence.” Yin Tong smiled.
“We should be more worried about the tactics they will use,” Yin Tong continued.
There weren’t many people in the hall and the tension was stifling. Yu Niang had left a while ago; she still had her kids to take care of. Besides, it would best to be left out of the discussion regarding this. Even though, with Qing Shui’s help, she was also a cultivator, Xiantian cultivators were nothing in those people’s eyes.
“Alright, it’s getting late, let’s disperse. Don’t be rash and don’t worry. Niu Clan isn’t enough to terrorize us, and we aren’t easily pushed around either.” Qing Shui stood up and yawned.
With that, the others naturally stood up and with a few polite words, they returned to their rooms for the night. Watching them take their leave, Qing Shui sat back down slowly.
Somehow, since leaving Dancing Phoenix Continent and Soaring Dragon Continent, he hadn’t been back in a long time. Initially, he could have visited the place soon after his return from Ice Ocean Domain’s Sea King’s Palace. Yehuang Guwu was at home, so he would be able to return whenever he wanted but the journey would take a long time.
It was different now. Around Sea King’s Palace, he had set up location in a Divine Cave and could return here. This way, whenever he wanted to visit Sea King’s Palace and return to Linhai City, he could do so with ease.
Ice Domain Dynasty, Great Qin Dynasty and the other dynasties in this region, along with concern over Ice Ocean Domain’s Sea King’s Palace, had left Qing Shui feeling like he should linger around here for quite a while. So, he thought it might be good to return home for a look.
If it wasn’t because of the abrupt incident with Niu Clan, Qing Shui anticipated that he would have been back home in Dancing Phoenix Continent by now. The thought made him hate Niu Clan; even if they had received the Demon King Inheritance, they didn’t have to behave like this…
The second day passed by peacefully. The mess in the Imperial Cuisine Hall was as it had been, but the they opened up a temporary medical hall in the backyard.
Qing Shui laid alone in the sun in the courtyard. The weather in Linhai was cold but there was sunlight at times too. There wasn’t much warmth in it and it was more for lighting purpose.
Qing Shui closed his eyes, only opening them at the sound of footsteps. He watched as Lan Lingfeng and Yin Tong carried a deck chair each and settled in on each side of Qing Shui.
“Say, what are you both doing here instead of training?” Qing Shui shut his eyes once more.
“Little brother, it’s already been so long, why isn’t there any stirring from Niu Clan?” Lan Lingfeng grumbled. He wanted to join in the fun; the love of battle flowed in his veins.
“You’re already this impatient after half a day. They have three days, what’s the hurry? If you don’t train properly, I’m not going to bother with you when you’re reduced to tears on the battlefield.” Qing Shui smiled. Lan Lingfeng was way too anxious.
“Lingfeng, do you wish for them to come or not?” Yin Tong asked with a smile.
“I want to fight, only in battle can I increase my might,” Lan Lingfeng said yearningly.
“That’s simple, I can battle you,” Qing Shui answered with a grin.
“No no, that’s fine. I want one who’s well-matched in strength.” Lan Lingfeng thought of the pathetic state he had been in when Qing Shui trained with him previously and a chill ran down his spine. Still, his improvement was obvious indeed, but the recollection was enough for him to retreat.
“How are you going to be a powerhouse this way? Where’s your courage?” Qing Shui laughed.
“Alright, alright. Come on, I’ll be your punching bag,” Lan Lingfeng spoke through gritted teeth.
“To be honest, you aren’t enough to be a punching bag either.”
“Brother, would it kill you to leave me some dignity?”
Lan Lingfeng was sore from head to toe after being beaten up, complete with a bloody nose and swollen face. The bones in his body seemed to have shattered and he lay gasping for air on the ground. Ziche Sha glared at Qing Shui when she came in to this sight, before heading for Lan Lingfeng.
Qing Shui gently rubbed his nose but didn’t say a word.
Even though Lan Lingfeng was sore all over, too tired to even speak, he felt pleased inside. The beating this time round had opened up all his basic acupoints, making it immensely beneficial for him.
“Is my wife’s heart aching for me? Don’t blame him, he’s only helping me.” Lan Lingfeng was delighted. Witnessing the expression in Ziche Sha’s eyes, he was exceptionally happy; the beating was worth it.
The next day was calm as usual, and Qing Shui was patient. There was no need to get anxious when the limit was three days. If Niu Clan could endure it this time round, then Qing Shui would have to properly assess their strength.
Qing Shui had already sent the word out. In three days, Niu Clan’s patriarch would have to bring his direct descendants to repair Imperial Cuisine Hall. If Niu Clan did that, it’d be the end of them.
If they didn’t, then Qing Shui and Imperial Cuisine Hall’s prestige would suffer. If Niu Clan’s Niu Fen still decided to come by after the message, that meant that they didn’t find Qing Shui to be of any importance.
He wondered if they still didn’t care much about them at this point.
When yet another day came around, the news reached Imperial Cuisine Hall. Or perhaps, it was more accurate to say that the news had broken out through Linhai City. Niu Clan had set up an arena in the largest street of Linhai City, challenging Imperial Cuisine Hall, and the news spread like wildfire.
“Brother, what do we do? Niu Clan has bullied us to our door,” Lan Lingfeng said in rage, his expression exaggerated.
“Go fight them then.” Qing Shui grinned.
“I’m unsure about it if you don’t go, I need you there to hold the line.” Lan Lingfeng snickered.
“Go inform your clan and Ziche Clan. Tell them that there’s no need for them to get mixed up in this but have them be there before us to show off their strength. We’ll head over in a bit.” Qing Shui said after some thought.
Lan Lingfeng nodded. He trusted Qing Shui. It was the type of faith that was beyond words, like the issue with Niu Clan. The thought of Imperial Cuisine failing had never crossed Lan Lingfeng’s mind.
Niu Clan was also diverting attention with this tactic. Qing Shui had released the deadline of three days ago but they didn’t make an obvious choice. Now there was still a day left, so technically their time was still not up but they had set up an arena for the challenge.
Imperial Cuisine Hall could choose to refuse this duel and even to ignore it altogether. Of course, they could also choose to accept, but if they didn’t, people would start talking. One of the obvious speculations would be whether Imperial Cuisine Hall was scared.
It was already late in the morning and the sun was three poles high. Niu Clan had said that they would wait until afternoon. If Imperial Cuisine Hall didn’t accept the battle, it would mean that they had abstained. The meaning couldn’t be more obvious; Imperial Cuisine Hall was afraid. If they didn’t have the power to meet them head-on, they shouldn’t be so arrogant. If they didn’t have the might, then were they bluffing just to scare…?
Qing Shui looked around him. Now Ling Fei, Xue Nuo and Ziche Sha were all here but only a few of them would fight. Still, this type of battle wasn’t about two victories out of three, or three out of five. Victory went to the last man standing.
When Qing Shui and the others arrived at the arena, there was already a huge crowd. At their appearance, a thunderous applause sounded. Qing Shui could tell that most of these people came in support of him but many came for the show, and so the applause from them was in celebration of the action they were about to witness.
“Brave, Miraculous Physician Qing, we support you, go defeat Niu Clan!”
“They don’t know the complexity of things. What background does Niu Clan have? It’s said that they’re descendants of an ancient battle clan, their bodies flow with warrior’s blood.”
“I heard that Niu Clan’s ancestor is a Demon King, and there’s a highly-skilled warrior concealed among them. It’s going to be tough for Imperial Cuisine Hall this time.”
“That’s hard to say. Miraculous Physician Qing should have an extraordinary power. Niu Clan might not be able to get an edge.”