"Elder Fang Yuan, is it true that you massacred the whole family of old Wang?" Gu Yue Bo asked with a heavy voice from the main seat.
All the gazes were on Fang Yuan; the young elder coldly smiled, "It is indeed true."
Gu Yue Fang Zheng closed his eyes in grief.
He may have killed many lightning wolves, but he had never taken any human lives. And now that he heard Fang Yuan admitting it himself, he suddenly felt that his own big brother had become so unfamiliar and estranged.
In this estrangement, he also felt fear towards his brother’s cruel methods and anger at the loss of innocent lives.
"Fang Yuan, do you not feel any guilt at slaughtering innocents? If you have any difficulties, you can say them out," Tie Ruo Nan spoke as she frowned. She was someone with extremely righteous character, and hated people like Fang Yuan the most.
"So what if I killed them, I don’t find it necessary to tell you my story. However, at that time, I didn’t know that the missing Wang Er was a demonic Gu Master. It could be said that Fang Zheng was unexpectedly implicated," Fang Yuan spoke honestly.
"Big brother, aren’t you going to say something to me?" Fang Zheng opened his eyes; the corners of his eyes had become red.
"What do you want me to say? Comfort you or to apologize? …..Hmph, little brother, you are too soft," Fang Yuan sneered.
"Damn it, big brother...don’t think you are extraordinary just by becoming an elder. I will tell you that I already have the qualifications to breakthrough to Rank three…." Fang Zheng gritted his teeth, veins popping up in his clenched fists.
"Enough!" Gu Yue Bo couldn’t continue looking at this anymore and shouted, "Fang Zheng, go back, what decorum are you showing by making a fuss here?"
His words had other meaning and expressed dissatisfaction. Tie Ruo Nan couldn’t sense it, but Divine Investigator Tie Xue Leng reacted immediately; he stepped forward and cupped his hands. "Gu Yue clan leader and all elders, it is indeed improper for my daughter to charge in and rush into the lords’ discussion hall. This one apologizes for offending everyone!"
The elders promptly stood up and kept on saying Tie Xue Leng was too kind.
Gu Yue Bo’s expression also relaxed.
Tie Xue Leng continued, "Since little brother Fang Yuan is involved in Jia Jin Sheng’s case and is also a suspect, I hope he remains at the village and will not leave to the other village."
Gu Yue Bo massaged his temples and sighed, "Our Gu Yue clan really hopes we can provide a suitable explanation to lord Jia Fu. Since Divine Investigator is also requesting, I will have to request Elder Fang Yuan to not leave before you are free of suspicions. I hope you can understand."
Gu Yue Bo looked at Fang Yuan, his expression sincere. But his gaze, however, held deep meanings.
Fang Yuan might have killed the whole of old Wang’s family, but they were only mortals. How could it be a crime for a Gu Master to kill these mortals? Especially if this Gu Master was an elder of the clan. Thus, there was no punishment.
"Yes." Fang Yuan glanced at Gu Yue Bo and replied expressionlessly.
"Damn it, it’s like this again!" Tie Ruo Nan punched a tree, causing the leaves to scatter.
She was very indignant as she said with clenched teeth, "It is clearly a murder, but they are turning a blind eye to it and not giving a damn. Father, are the mortals not humans? Why do Gu Masters feel that they have the rights to kill the mortals?"
Tie Xue Leng was silent like a sculpture.
The weather was somewhat gloomy, and the wind blew and tree leaves rustled.
Tie Ruo Nan suddenly lowered her head, her expression was down. "I am sorry, father."
She apologized, "I didn’t listen to your advice, and used the Intuition Gu."
"Sigh….." Divine Investigator let out a long sigh and looked at his daughter with a profound gaze, "Child, you have such hatred for evil and is full of righteousness, just like me when I was young. I am happy but also worried."
"Why are you worried?"
"Your ideals are much bigger than mine was at that time. When I was young, my ambition was to capture all the criminals and cram up the Demon Suppression Tower. But as for you, you want to make everyone equal, treating both Gu Masters and the mortals equally, causing law and order to be established in the whole world. Such ambitions and ideals are too big and also very heavy," Tie Xue Leng’s words were filled with experience.
"But father, this so-called law, fairness and justice. If we don’t treat everyone equally, what meaning do they have? If the young don’t have ambitious dreams, then how could they be considered young? I believe it’s all a matter of our own efforts. As long as I give my best, it might not necessarily be impossible to achieve!" Tie Ruo Nan spoke excitedly, her two eyes filled with hopes for the future.
Tie Xue Leng was silent for a good while, "There will be a day when you will understand. But, this is good too, young people should walk their paths by themselves. Setbacks will make you mature. Father won’t interfere anymore. I only hope you can live the life you want!"
He then took out a letter and gave it to Tie Ruo Nan.
"This is….?!" Tie Ruo Nan tore open the letter and was immediately overjoyed.
This letter was from Jia Fu and it recorded every information regarding Jia Jin Sheng’s case, including how Fang Yuan obtained the Liquor worm by rock gambling, how the bamboo gentleman was used to interrogate Fang Yuan, and even Fang Yuan’s bidding prices at the second caravan visit where he showed business talent and received Jia Fu’s recruitment offer.
Tie Ruo Nan reread the contents of ‘Fang Yuan’s bidding prices’ multiple times; her gaze turned brighter and brighter.
"This Fang Yuan is not only fierce in his methods, but also has cruel nature and is even able to scheme deeply. My intuition tells me he is very suspicious. If he is really the killer, then he should be somewhat afraid. But the bamboo gentleman showed no changes to his lies, how did he do it?" Tie Ruo Nan muttered to herself.
"What are you preparing to do next?" Tie Xue Leng asked.
"It has been a long time since Jia Jin Sheng’s death. Everything is fishy and filled with mysteries. Till now, his corpse has not been found and even the place of his death hasn’t been deduced. This case is too clean, giving me no clues, except that Fang Yuan is the biggest suspect. Although the clues from Wang Er has been broken, there are no evidences to prove he is the killer. However, because there are no other clues, I can only rely on my intuition to investigate this Fang Yuan!" Tie Ruo Nan enthusiastically replied.
"You feel that Fang Yuan is suspicious?" Tie Xue Leng asked.
"Extremely suspicious!" Tie Ruo Nan immediately said, "This Fang Yuan is clearly only a C grade aptitude, but why is his cultivation speed faster than Fang Zheng’s? One could say he had the help from the Liquor worm and the Relic Gu, but this speed is still very fast. Gu Yue clan might not have sensed anything wrong, but this is a case of ‘those closely involved can’t see as clearly as those outside’. This is the first suspicious point."
"Besides this, there is another suspicious point; his luck. He rock gambled for the first time in his life and bought six purple gold stones, but was able to get two live Gu; a mudskin toad and a Liquor worm. Isn’t this luck way too much?"
Tie Xue Leng nodded, "Yes, continue."
"This Fang Yuan looks ordinary, but if we look into him, we will find that the mysteries surrounding him are like the thick fog covering the mountain. Many things that were inadvertently revealed makes one ponder. For instance, his rock dissecting technique; he actually used the Moonlight Gu to dissect rocks and did it without damaging the core. Such delicate control is really unimaginable for a student….wait!"
Tie Ruo Nan paused. She had discovered something as her eyes let out bright and sharp light!
Her gaze landed on a line of words in the letter, and the more she looked at, the more her gaze brightened.
"I found it. This Fang Yuan has a huge problem!" After a long while, she suddenly raised her head and excitedly spoke.
The fragrance of the tea in the cup rose with the steam and spread in the study room.
Fang Yuan held the tea cup, then blew the floating tea leaves and drank the hot tea. After that, he leisurely let out some turbid air.
Upon seeing the leisurely attitude of Fang Yuan, Gu Yue Mo Chen did his best to endure and felt the veins in his forehead bulging.
Previously, Fang Yuan had asked for a huge price and he had angrily chased the latter out of his house.
But today, he had no choice but to re-invite Fang Yuan.
All this was simply because circumstances are more powerful than men. Yao faction had been pressuring him from everywhere and the matter regarding his drop to Rank two was going to be revealed sooner or later. Mo faction was in imminent danger; it urgently needed an elder to serve as son-in-law and stabilize the situation.
"This bastard is too vile, making such sky-high demands. Does he really think my Mo faction is bathing in gold?" Gu Yue Mo Chen cursed inwardly, while outwardly putting on a warm smile and speaking in a negotiating voice, "Elder Fang Yuan, your price is too much, it greatly exceeds what my Mo faction can support. Can you decrease it?"
Fang Yuan glanced at Gu Yue Mo Chen. This old man who knew when to give and take was worthy of respect.
In fact, his current situation was also becoming messed up.
The Tie father and daughter were forcing him into a corner. Once it was found out that he killed Jia Jin Sheng, Gu Yue Clan would definitely hand him over to appease the Jia family’s anger and simultaneously be able to continue trading with the Jia family caravan every year.
It was almost the crucial moment now, so Fang Yuan softened his tone, "Then we will decrease it by thirty percent. But there is a condition, you need to show me your sincerity by paying forty thousand primeval stones in advance. Also you must hand over a Pig Iron Gu and an Afterlife Grass Gu."
Gu Yue Mo Chen couldn’t help but massage his brows when he heard this. He replied in a sunken voice, "Pig Iron Gu will be handed to you, but my Mo faction’s warehouse doesn’t have any Afterlife Grass Gu. We can’t also give the forty thousand primeval stones at once, they will be given to you in installments."
Fang Yuan knew this old fox wasn’t speaking the truth, but he was very clear that being too overbearing could instead produce the opposite result.
"That’s okay. I will wait for you to send them first, then we can talk about marriage. Before that, I can’t guarantee my allegiance." Fang Yuan left these words before walking away.
The study room was silent once more.
A long while later, Gu Yue Mo Chen suddenly said, "You can come out."
A hidden door was pushed open and a young girl walked out. There were tear stains on her face and her eyes were red from the crying.
"Grandpa." She paid her respects; she was Gu Yue Mo Yan.
Gu Yue Mo Chen sighed, "You are also clear on the family’s situation. Mo Yan, our family needs your sacrifice, can you understand?"
"Yes." The young girl sobbed and lowered her head.
No matter which world, there is no such thing as a free lunch. Even Fang Yuan contributed a lot of strength to the clan as a clan elder. The only difference is that the amount one pays or obtains, differs from person to person.
Even those kids with golden spoons also cannot freely enjoy the privileges. By receiving the family’s nurturing, they needed to have the resolve to sacrifice.
And this resolve was already present in Gu Yue Mo Yan.
She didn’t have the least bit of feelings for Fang Yuan, even feeling hatred and disgust towards the latter. But she knew, she had to marry him for the sake of her family, becoming his wife!