Chapter 336 - Madam Ling’s Guess
Only half a section of the grass sword was left in Ai Hui’s hand but Ai Hui stood steady and dust-free.
Amid the sea of silence, he threw away the sword in his hand and said with ease, "Please get me a new sword."
As if awakening from a dream, the teachers standing at the side hurriedly handed over their swords to Ai Hui and felt embarrassed upon realizing that many others had also offered their swords.
Ai Hui took a sword from the nearest teacher and thanked him.
He then gave the others a slight bow. "Thank you everyone."
People were only now coming back to their senses and a clamor broke out.
The students were excited and in disbelief. Many had both hands on their heads as they mumbled about things that they, themselves, could not hear. They had seen many who managed to break the sword formations, especially the first one since it was the easiest. The fastest record was a minute and ten seconds.
So far, Chu Zhaoyang was the slowest contender.
Yet, it was this fact that shook them completely. They had never seen a sword formation being destroyed and falling into ruins. The same voice echoed in all their minds, "How’s that possible?"
How was that possible?
Qin Xian opened his eyes wide as the same question filled his mind. He already had an idea when he saw that seven minutes had passed, but to have that scene unfold right before his eyes was still a shocking experience.
Lian Junyu had both hands over her mouth, and her face was overwhelmed with shock.
The grass swords had scattered all over the place due to the surging force from the formation. It was as if a violent beast had just trampled across this area.
Ai Hui felt rather embarrassed. "I am so sorry to have destroyed the sword formation. I’m willing to compensate."
He had no choice and had been pondering how to carry out his mission of sneaking into the main institution. His conclusion was that he needed to impress and shock them.
It appeared that he had accomplished his goal.
However, to come over to someone else’s territory, make use of their sword formation, and still act so arrogantly, was this not considered bullying?
Okay, maybe a little, but to complete his mission, he really could not care that much! Plus, why did he feel… slightly pleased? That final blow had really given him an adrenaline rush.
Hey, hey, hey, calm down. Unlike Fatty, he was not an immoral fellow!
Qin Xian reacted by laughing joyously. "Don’t say that, Brother Chu. We are more than happy that it’s broken since it means that we, the swordsmen, are powerful. Do not feel apologetic. You’ve really opened up our eyes. This experience is far more valuable than the sword formation and also proves something."
He deliberately pause before continuing in a deadpan manner, "It was the right choice to use grass swords when deriving a sword formation."
Those around roared with laughter, and even Ai Hui could not resist revealing a slight smile.
It had to be said that Qin Xian was an extremely charming fellow. He was likeable and approachable.
"The next formation then?"
"To the next!" Qin Xian added as a reminder, "Please do not go easy, Brother Chu. It’s fine if you destroy it. It will teach the younger ones a little something—that there’s always a higher mountain to climb. Plus, grass swords aren’t expensive and they’re easily replaceable."
The last sentence caused the crowd to erupt into laughter once more.
Ai Hui laughed out loud. Carrying the grass sword, he walked upright and unafraid toward the second sword formation.
With unhurried steps, Ai Hui felt carefree and relaxed Looking from the back, however, there was a mighty aura that surrounded him. Those who witnessed this sight could not help but feel admiration.
The Ling residence, Golden Eagle Study Room.
The servants all knew that the family head would only call for his wife if he had met with a challenging situation.
According to the rules set by the older generation, the women in Ling residence were not allowed to enter the study. However, when it came to this particular madam, there was no restriction at all. The servants felt it was reasonable. Even the housekeeper who had served the residence for over 50 years and across two generations felt it was reasonable. No one had an objections.
Madam Ling had proven too many times that she was knowledgeable, experienced, and a good judge. When the old family head was still healthy, even he was full of praise when it came to this daughter-in-law of his.
When Madam Ling was young, she was not considered the most notable young aristocrat.
Back in the day, the most famous figure, also referred to as "Flower of Aristocratic Families", was Ye Lin. Ye Lin was born into the most respectable family in all of the Avalon of Five Elements and later married the only son of the Elders Guild’s Great Elder.
However, Madam Ling was different. She relied on her own wisdom and personality to win the hearts of everybody. She had the perfect family, and her children grew up well. Her virtuous character was well-known to the aristocratic families. Her husband treated her with utmost respect, and everyone in the household adored her deeply.
There were people in the Ling residence who talked behind the family head’s back and were let off with a few warnings. However, those who talked bad about the madam were undoubtedly going to get a beating.
"Have you found out what it is exactly?" Madam Ling sipped her tea and asked unhurriedly, "How can it be an ordinary object if Dai Gang set his eyes upon it?"
"Opinions differ." Family Head Ling Sheng anxiously continued, "Some mentioned that it is a secret swordplay called [Transcendence] from the Void Sword Clan. Some said it’s a blood-refining spell, while others said it’s an important treasure belonging to Karakorum, or even a demonic artifact. There are also people who believe that it is an immortality pill. We planned to enter from the Great Wei Enterprise, but they reacted very aggressively and those people did not hold back so…"
Madam Ling placed her tea cup down and sighed. "Why must we take action? Didn’t we agree that no action should be taken unless absolutely necessary? Don’t keep using those people. They’re too murderous."
Ling Sheng replied in embarrassment, "I’ve already given them a scolding, but you know what kind of people they are too. It’s difficult for them to control themselves when they see blood."
He elaborated, "There’s still some benefits. I heard that that the Great Wei Enterprise has obtained this ancient treasure for quite a long time now. The enterprise has a good relationship with the Duanmu family and they had even presented a gift to the family before. You do remember what happened next right? Back in the day, Dai Gang accepted Duanmu Huanghun as his disciple all of a sudden, and the Duanmu family specially selected a bunch of gifts for Dai Gang. The thing that Great Wei Enterprise gifted Duanmu family is likely to be in Dai Gang’s hands."
"From what you’ve said, that’s actually possible. Otherwise, why would the Great Wei Enterprise get noticed by Dai Gang?" Madam Ling said thoughtfully as she mumbled to herself. "The Great Wei Enterprise planned to send the ancient treasure to the Jadeite Forest, but the news was leaked, attracting many who lusted over the treasure. Why didn’t Dai Gang send reinforcements at that time? Could it be that he hadn’t figured out what was going on? Yeah, probably. This means that the Great Wei Enterprise might not know what the treasure is for. Dai Gang did not hesitate to request the help of an enterprise of Avalon of Five Elements to search for this treasure. Evidently, it is extremely important to him. Tell me, with his current status, is there anything he would sacrifice everything to obtain?"
Having thought for a long time, Ling Sheng shook his head. "Can’t think of anything. Dai Gang is now a Grandmaster. He’s the god of the Jadeite Forest, so what could he possibly not have?"
A lightbulb went off in Madam Ling’s head. She shouted excitedly, "Great Grandmaster! What if the treasure he’s looking for could make him a Great Grandmaster?"
Ling Sheng sat dumbstruck. After some time, he stammered, "Is there something so magical in this world?"
Madam Ling questioned him instead of answering. "Then tell me, other than this kind of object, what else could be attractive enough for Dai Gang?"
Ling Sheng stared absent-mindedly for a long time, muttering to himself, "How can there be such a treasure?"
Deep down, he had already internalized his wife’s judgment, but it was simply too shocking for him. He soon came up with another question. "If it’s so important to Dai Gang, why doesn’t he personally make a move?"
The moment these words left his mouth, he knew he had just asked a foolish question.
Indeed, his question put Madam Ling in a bad mood. "An Muda isn’t dead yet."
Ling Sheng felt embarrassed once again.
There could never be two tigers on one mountain. This was especially the case for Grandmasters. Between Grandmasters, they were natural enemies and both parties could feel each other’s presence from thousands of miles away. Dai Gang’s infiltration into the Avalon could be concealed from everyone except An Muda.
Grandmasters were the real treasures of a powerful nation. Once they were deployed, that would be the decisive battle.
Unless Dai Gang was insane, he would absolutely never enter the Avalon of Five Elements.
"An Muda doesn’t have many years left ahead of him," Ling Sheng commented.
This was also the reason why he would contact Dai Gang in secret. It was to leave an escape route for the Ling residence. The death of An Muda would break the equilibrium between both sides and no one inside of the Avalon would be able to stop Dai Gang.
An Muda was too old. No one knew how much longer he would live.
Everyone understood that the moment of An Muda’s death would be the moment when everything changed.
Anyway, the Ling residence was not the only family leaving a way out for themselves.
"If this item is so important to Dai Gang, and he’s determined to win it over, then the Ling residence wouldn’t be the only family he’s utilizing. We must grab this opportunity to gain merit so as to rise above the rest." Madam Ling’s voice was ice cold. "Is she in Karakorum?"
Whenever Madam Ling used this murderous tone with him, Ling Sheng would feel an indescribable excitement and would want more than anything to pounce on and ravage her.
He licked his lips. "Yes! She’s in the Karakorum Sword League and is said to be a big beauty. Presumably, Karakorum Sword League heard about the [Transcendence] secret swordplay and wondered what it was for, but it’s a pity they have yet to find its whereabouts and can only keep her confined at home."
Madam Ling asked, "What is Karakorum Sword League all about?"
She had heard of this name, but was not concerned. Other than the aristocratic families located there, Silver City was a place where generations of families were replaced quickly.
Water-like Silver City, iron-made aristocratic families.
"What history? What history could a bunch of idiotic sword lovers have? Swordsmanship has long been thrown into the trash, yet there are always people who are trying to commemorate it. Those who associate themselves with swordsmanship are all fools."
Madam Ling responded with a straight face, "Just like Ye Lin."
Ling Sheng was astounded. "Widow Ye Lin must have bullied you quite a bit in the past for you to hold such a deep grudge."
"Capture that beauty." Madam Ling could not be bothered with him. Her face remained ice cold as she spoke, " The treasure must be where she is. Karakorum Sword League may be unable to locate it, but we’re not as useless."
Ling Sheng was no longer able to hold himself back. With a cry he pounced on her like a wild beast in heat.