Chapter 439: Zuo Lan Flees in a Panic
The thrumming of the guzhen’s rhythm was constantly fluctuating, at times fierce and at times melodious.
But there was an indistinguishable strength within this unpredictable rhythm, a strength that brooked no opposition from Zuo Lan’s aura.
Zuo Lan’s expression suddenly changed drastically, the light in his eyes vanishing as he searched his surroundings with fear and shock, trying to ascertain where the music notes had originated from.
However, he was destined for disappointment. The notes seemed to be coming from all directions, and there was no way to pinpoint their source.
Zuo Lan was still caught in the depths of his shock and suspicion, his eyes tinged with genuine surprise. All of a sudden, he deflated like a fully inflated ball being pricked by a needle.
His expression took on a more thoughtful look as he took another glance at the three sects. He grit his teeth and waved, “We go!”
Zuo Lan was suddenly retreating!
The forefathers of the three sects all looked at each other, completely baffled.
Zuo Lan had been building up his strength and about to erupt in full glory. Everyone had been ready to fight to the death. How could he have given up all of a sudden?
Even Zuo Lan’s three subordinates found this hard to believe, much less the three sects.
However, in the end, they answered to him and naturally didn’t voice objections. They followed behind him with greatly sullen visages.
The Purple Sun Sect was even more caught off guard.
Sunchaser, in particular, had already been rubbing his fists and wiping his palms, ready for a great battle. He hadn’t thought at all that Envoy Zuo Lan would suddenly wheel around as if he’d seen a ghost.
This completely demoralized Sunchaser. He’d already decided in that moment that he would have to use his strongest methods possible to kill Jiang Chen.
He wouldn’t be able to live in peace if he didn’t eliminate Jiang Chen.
Jiang Chen was simply growing too quickly, so quickly that even he, an origin realm forefather, felt exceedingly uneasy.
At this rate, it wouldn’t be long before Jiang Chen could directly threaten old monster Sunchaser’s existence.
He and the entire Purple Sun Sect would thoroughly bereft of security then.
When he considered how deep the feud between the Purple Sun Sect and Jiang Chen was, it was easy to imagine the depths of fear and unease in Sunchaser’s heart.
However, Zuo Lan had already retreated, and those of the Purple Sun Sect naturally couldn’t linger.
Sunchaser had a darkened face of awkwardness as he too gestured and took the Purple Sun Sect slinking away.
The three great sects immediately began booing and heckling when they saw the Purple Sun Sect turn tail.
“Old dog Sunchaser, go back and lick the arses of your Sky Sect envoys!”
“We’ll beat you old and young dogs if you dare come and throw your weight around again!”
The younger disciples of the three sects were all still enraged and cursed loudly.
Sunchaser almost spat out blood when he heard the venomous haranguing. For now, he had to pinch his nose and restrain himself no matter how ugly the words he heard were.
After the Sky Sect had withdrawn, the Purple Sun Sect couldn’t kick up a fuss by themselves. They‘d be courting death if they faced the three great sects alone.
With the three sects’ currently furious emotions, it was highly likely they’d be caught in a lynching if they were just a bit slower about leaving.
Although Sunchaser was confident, he wasn’t blind enough to think that he would be able to resist the combined efforts of all three sects.
Sunchaser’s group finally caught up to Zuo Lan and the others when they were 50 kilometers away from the Precious Tree Sect.
“Honored Envoy, we held the advantage just now, why did we suddenly leave?”
Sunchaser asked, baffled, when he finally caught up to Zuo Lan.
Zuo Lan’s face was ashen, a hint of wariness still in his eyes. He looked back in the direction of the Precious Tree Sect and snorted softly, but didn’t respond.
Sunchaser didn’t dare erupt in rage even though he’d ended up with a face full of dust. He could only follow glumly behind Zuo Lan, walking forward with his head down.
Zuo Lan’s heartstrings finally slowly relaxed after they’d travelled speedily for approximately three hours. He had truly been quite frightened just now.
He’d never have thought that there would be a hidden expert within the Precious Tree Sect, at least one capable of using ethereal music notes to destroy his origin realm aura.
Even though Zuo Lan didn’t know who the other was, he was certain of one thing. The expert with the guzhen was even stronger than him.
They’d been able to use mere music notes to destroy his aura from such a far distance, and even with such overwhelming dominance at that.
However, the Precious Tree Sect was just a small place, how could it be concealing this level of an expert?
Zuo Lan couldn’t come to an answer no matter how he thought about it, so he called over Sunchaser and asked, “Sunchaser, apart from Thousandleaf, is there an even stronger expert within that sect who has yet to emerge?”
Sunchaser was completely turned on his head by this question.
“A stronger person? Sunchaser shook his head unconsciously. “That’s not possible. I’ve held court in the sixteen kingdom alliance for so many years and know the four great sects like the back of my hand. I wouldn’t miss intelligence of even a promising disciple, never mind someone stronger than Thousandleaf. What kind of stronger existence is there in the Precious Tree Sect? If there is, all those within it would never keep such a low profile.”
The four great sects were in constant competition. If anyone had such an absolute trump card, they would take it out every now and then to awe the other three sects, even if they didn’t show it off all the time.
Not displaying an advantage wasn’t the style of the four great sects.
Zuo Lan was deep in thought. He too didn’t believe that the Precious Tree Sect would have any sort of unparalleled expert. However, what he was certain of was that the owner of the guzhen was much stronger than him. Of that, there was no doubt.
Could it be that some sort of hidden expert was residing in the sect and didn’t wish for the sect to be attacked? If this was the case, then the situation had just taken a complicated turn.
As the Sky Sect’s envoy, he was here to settle the sixteen kingdom alliance and support the men of the Purple Sun Sect in uniting the alliance.
If he didn’t complete this mission, then his inspection tour would be deemed a failure.
A failure was fine, but not receiving the Sky Sect’s reward for completion or negatively impacting others’ viewpoint of him, this was something that Zuo Lan didn’t want to see.
“Sir Zuo Lan, are you suspecting whether some sort of expert has appeared in the Precious Tree Sect?” Sunchaser suddenly asked.
“Sunchaser, you claim to have grasped everything in the sixteen kingdom alliance. How come you haven’t heard of an expert in residence in the Precious Tree Sect?”
Zuo Lan’s tone was rather displeased. His sudden withdrawal today had indeed forcefully taken the wind out of his sails. He felt rather embarrassed when he remembered the course of events.
“Sir, when it comes to this expert, your subordinate has always had some suspicions. However, I’ve never been able to obtain confirmation and so didn’t dare speak of nonsense in front of the honored sir.”
“Tell me what you know.”
Zuo Lan’s tone was irritated. He was quite irked that Sunchaser had withheld information.
“Sir, I’ve been wondering that an enormously strong expert has been supporting Jiang Chen and helping him rise. Otherwise, a young man born of an ordinary kingdom has no means of climbing so high, so fast.”
Sunchaser voiced his speculations and then delved into the relevant details. Much of this had come from Master Shuiyue.
If he’d only been suspicious before, then being beaten back with a pinecone when Jiang Chen had killed Long Juxue in the ring had allowed Sunchaser to be certain that there was an incredible expert behind the scenes.
However, he’d been unable to determine whether this expert was here by coincidence or because of Jiang Chen.
But now with Sir Zuo Lan’s actions right now, he’d obviously been scared off by an incredible expert. This expert very likely had a great deal to do with Jiang Chen.
When he finished listening to Sunchaser’s words, Zuo Lan’s brow knit together. “So that arrogant kid Jiang Chen had an incredible expert as his backer. No wonder he was so cocky.”
Sunchaser still refused to accept things and asked, “Sir Envoy, is this matter over just like that? Do we abandon our work when we’re one step away from success?”
Sunchaser was obviously highly dissatisfied with this result. Jiang Chen wasn’t dead, and the Purple Light Division hadn’t been able to swallow the other three sects.
Whether it was his personal grudges or his ambitions, none of them had materialized.
Zuo Lan laughed coldly. “What? Do you still want to return to the Precious Tree Sect?”
Sunchaser felt a bit awkward. “Even if there was an incredible expert, they’re still courting death in going against the Sky Sect. Sir Envoy, just how strong is that expert?”
Sunchaser was even more curious about this question.
Zuo Lan sighed softly. “I don’t know how strong they are, but of one thing I am certain. Although the expert didn’t reveal themselves, they are far stronger than me. If the Precious Tree Sect has gained their protection, it will be exceedingly hard to devour it.”
Sunchaser was enormously depressed to hear those words.
What he wanted most was to teach a lesson to the Precious Tree Sect! If he couldn’t do that, then there was no fun in being the division master of the Purple Light Division.
“Alright, return to the Purple Light Division first. Sunchaser, you have no need to continue inquiring about this matter. Since an incredible expert has intervened, I must request guidance from my superiors. I trust that even stronger envoys will arrive before long. Hmph. I hadn’t thought that a mere sixteen kingdom alliance would be this knotty and difficult to handle. This was rather out of my expectations.”
Zuo Lan had thought that with his strength, his three subordinates, and the Purple Sun Sect, they would absolutely be able to sweep the three great sects and instill awe in them all.
Everything had proceeded according to plan till now. Although the extra factor of Jiang Chen had appeared, Zuo Lan had believed that as long as he took the field himself, then even Jiang Chen wouldn’t be a problem.
Sunchaser’s heart was quite unsettled. The sixteen kingdom alliance was just this small place. Zuo Lan’s arrival had been quite shocking already.
If an even stronger envoy arrived, he really didn’t know how he’d wait upon them.
While Zuo Lan and Sunchaser were busy being paranoid, the forefathers of the other three sects were equally bemused.
Zuo Lan’s presence had been so domineering just now they’d barely managed to hang on, but then a wave of notes from a qin had seemed to echo in the air.
In the next moment, Zuo Lan had run away like he’d seen a hungry ghost.
“Who can tell me what’s going on here?” Ninelion was mystified.
Thousandleaf and Ye Chonglou looked at each other, equally dumbfounded. They knew nothing either.
If those of the Precious Tree Sect were clueless, then the others were even more puzzled.
Rather, it was Jiang Chen who had a grave expression on his face as he seemed to guess at something.
He too had heard the notes and felt them strongly cut away at Zuo Lan’s aura, destroying it like crumpling a dead branch.
“Can it be? Was it her?”
A hazy figure appeared in his mind, but this matter was of great importance, and so Jiang Chen kept quiet to avoid giving rise to unnecessary speculation.