Chapter 361: Encounter at the hot spring!
"Miss, I remember the hot spring was right here." It was the voice of Taohong.
"Yes, I also saw there were steam rising." It was the voice of Liulu. The voice of Liulu was gentler than Taohong’s, it sounded soft and quiet, like the voice of a doll. So it was easy for Li Muyang to distinguish their voices apart.
"Hot spring? Steam rising?"
Li Muyang’s eyes widened with a startled expression.
"Is this the place they’re looking for? How could that be? I have arrived at this hot spring first, and now have taken my clothes off. I won't have time to get up——if they suddenly see a naked man jump up from the hot spring, they will scream pervert. The entire Thousand Buddha Temple will be alarmed."
"If I make a noise they will run away in panic. This probably won't work. However, if I do not tell them, then can I let Cui Xiaoxin undress and enter into the hot spring?I am very looking forward to such a scene, but if I am discovered it will cause no end of troubles. My identity would most likely be exposed——"
Li Muyang was suffering agonies of the mind as he quickly ran through various plans.
During his moment of hesitation, the sounds of the footsteps were already near the stone walls.
"You two girls speak softly, if people hear us, it will be bad." Cui Xiaoxin indeed has a careful personality, even at this time she still dared not to draw attention.
"Miss, it's is freezing, the others have already gone to sleep, how would someone know we've come out?"
"Yes, the other people do not have the clean and tidy habit of Miss, you cant sleep if you don't bath at night——Miss, don’t worry we will be keeping watch, no one will disturb Miss."
"Be careful too, what if you disturb the monks in the temple?" Cui Xiaoxin said with a smile.
"Yes yes. Miss tells us to whisper, we will whisper, Miss tells us to be silent we will be silent." Taohong smiled.
The three people walked to the edge of the hot spring surrounded by rocks and trees, looking at the spring shrouded in mist and steam, and Taohong said thoughtfully: "Miss, I will test the water temperature for you first."
As she spoke, she squatted down and dipped her hand into the hot spring.
After swirling her hand around for a while, she said aloud: "Miss, the water is slightly hot. The weather is getting colder, it can help with the cold."
"Yes, the perfect time to soak in a hot spring is on a cold night." Cui Xiaoxin was evidently very satisfied with the scene and atmosphere. "It would be even more beautiful if we could have snow falling now."
Two servant girl immediately got busy, Liulu was responsible for standing guard at the intersection of the stone path, while Taohonh came to help the young miss take off her clothes.
Finally when there was only a white undergarment left, Cui Xiaoxin stopped Taohong.
"Miss, there’s no one around, why don’t you take off the under garment, it will be more comfortable." Taohong said, smiling. "I like to take off all my clothes when I’m in a bath, so I can enjoy myself."
Cui Xiaoxin shook her head. "After all, it's the wilderness. If something happens, I’m afraid it’ll be too late."
Taohong was well aware of the personality of Young Miss and no longer tried to persuade her, she first searched around the hot spring and then stood in the water to help Cui Xiaoxin down.
Cui Xiaoxin’s body was slim, even if there was a light layer of clothing wrapped round her body, it still could not conceal the plump areas.
Her exposed neck and arms were whiter than snow, and made one have the impulse to take a bite.
Cui Xiaoxin immersed the whole body in the hot spring and could not help but gently groan
The coldness was gone, and the body was submerged in hot spring water. Carefree and warm, it made one feel drowsy.
"Miss, it's relaxing right? Taohong smiled.
"Yes." Cui Xiaoxin gently replied. At this time, she lacked even the strength to talk.
"I'm glad." Said Taohong, smiling. "Unfortunately, I didn't bring soap or petals, it would have given off a nice fragrance."
Cui Xiaoxin gently smiled. "Hot spring is a medicinal spring. By itself, it has the effect of expelling coldness and moisture. Soaking in hot springs can improve the complexion. Such a beneficial hot spring, wouldn't it be wasting natural resources to use soap and petals?"
"Miss knows so much."
"Reading improves knowledge." Cui Xiaoxin said. "That’s why I asked you to read a lot."
"We have been reading a lot of books. But the brain of a servant is stupid. I forget it after I read it."
"Then read it a few more times, the meaning will become clear when you read it many times."
"Miss, not everyone is as smart as you." Taohong crouched down by Cui Xiaoxin's side. "Miss, do you want to wash your hair?"
"No, It’s so cold outside, it's easy to get sick if you can’t dry your hair in time."
"You're right. I cannot let Miss catch a cold." Taohong said, then after a moment she whispered, "Miss, why did you ask the cart driver whether he is Li Muyang today? Does he have something do with that Li Muyang?"
Xiaohong and Xiaolu were the personal servants of Cui Xiaoxin and knew of the reason why Miss and Miss Shinian were good friends. They knew as well as knew why Miss treats Li Muyang differently. When no one was there, Cui Xiaoxin would say something private stuff to them.
After all, these were words that should not be said in front of elders and close relatives.
In the corner, below the hot spring, was a crouching dark figure.
Li Muyang was hesitating, not knowing what to do when Cui Xiaoxin and her two servants were already close by.
With no time to think, he could only plunge into the bottom of the hot spring. His whole body was buried in the spring water.
He had only dived in, but was already choking and nearly fainted from the heat at the bottom and strong sulphur smell.
He slammed his eyes shut and hurriedly began reciting the 'Lao Zi mind clearing mantra'. It was only after a while that he became more comfortable.
The hot spring was not big, but in order to give Cui Xiaoxin the space to bath, and to not let their body have any contact or collision, Li Muyang as far as possible, compressed his body, curling up into a ball and squatted at the bottom of the hot spring.
Li Muyang kept silent and held his breath, silently sensing the movement of the water.
He heard the dialogue between Cui Xiaoxin and Taohong. He heard Cui Xiaoxin undressing, and heard the sound of Cui Xiaoxin submerging into the water——
Because of the black dragon in his body, Li Muyang had fused with the Tear of the Dragon King, giving him a strong ability to survive under water.
It only took a moment’s effort for him to adapt to the underwater environment.
His breathing was normal, his heartbeat was normal, and when he opened his eyes underwater he could see the outline of everything clearly.
Of course, there was also a clear outline of Cui Xiaoxin's body.
Her slender and long legs, her soft waist and her body lying there, like a lazy kitten.
The water seeped beneath her clothes until they ballooned around her, so there was an exposure of spring.
Cui Xiaoxin would never think that, although she had avoided the eyes above the water, there would be a pair of eyes underwater staring at her.
"Look at nothing that is not consistent with propriety." Li Muyang quickly turned his eyes away.
How can a man withstand the temptation of a wet body?
However, if Li Muyang did not look, he would feel troubled, just like he had walked pass 100 gold coins on the floor——
"Just one look." Li Muyang told himself so. "Yes, just one look. I won’t look again after this."
After a glance, Li Muyang was a bit more troubled.
"Let’s take another look, since I’ve seen it already——"
When Taohong asked about what happened today, Li Muyang immediately concentrated his attention, seriously——looking at Cui Xiaoxin’s thigh.
When Cui Xiaoxin’s hands was subconsciously stirring the water, the layer of clothes covering her thigh was pushed away by the water, exposing her delicate fair skin.
Li Muyang quickly covered his nose, afraid of blood gushing out.
"For some reason, when I see the cart driver, there is a familiar feeling." Cui Xiaoxin sighed softly. "As though I've seen him before."
"Miss you have seen him before?"
"That’s strange." Taohong said teasingly. "Perhaps all the Li family has the same characteristics? Or Miss has a special feeling for people of the Li family, so the Li family feels specially close?"
"You, even you dare tease me."
"Miss——I your servant, I hope to serve Miss for a lifetime, I hope that Miss is happy everyday. Ever since Miss had returned to Tiandu, I noticed that Miss is not really happy. It seems that there is always an endless worry in your heart."
Cui Xiaoxin sighed softly and then said, "I don't know why. When I was in Jiangnan, although life was simpler, it was more relaxed and comfortable, I could read everyday, enjoy the scenery, and eat all kinds of food. There was no pressure in mind. Back to Tiandu, all sorts of troubles come naturally. There are many things that cannot be said and many people that I cannot see. Also—— "
Cui Xiaoxin could not continue.
A long time ago, she knew that the Cui family and the song family’s jade tree were seeking a marriage arrangement. At that time she was far away in Jiangnan and could pretend that this matter does not exist.
But when she returned to Tiandu, the affair was instantly pulled to the front.
She couldn't hide, she couldn't avoid, and could only helplessly watch them push this matter to that step.
Family honorus, personal feelings, the association or confrontation with all kinds of people——
This was not the life she liked.
She loved the comfort of Jiangnan, and not the noisy Tiandu.
"Also what?" Liulu asked.
Liulu was sat on a rock at the entrance, and as she was talking her fingers inadvertently touched the bottom of the rock.
"Miss, someone placed some clothes under the rock——do you think thid person is stupid? Who would forget their clothes after a bath.
After that, the three of them became stiff and frightened.
Chapter 362: Ghost-like nightingale!
The darkness of night was as black as ink and the cold wind cuts like knife.
The moon in the sky had disappeared, and except for the little lamp that they brought hanging in the treetops, everything around were engulfed in darkness. It was such a pitch black that they could not even see their hands in front.
An isolated peak, an old forest, and a hidden hot spring concealed between rocks and thickets.
Two girls were soaking in the hot spring, and a girl was sat crouching on a rock.
Looking up, all around were shadows, which appeared like ghosts.
A nightingale bird flew past overhead, producing miserable and sad cries, sending chills down one’s spine.
Taohong scanned the surroundings, and studied the expression of the young miss, before saying angrily, "Liulu, what you are you saying? It must be an idiot that changed into clean clothes and forgot to bring the dirty clothes away——This must be some unwanted clothes. What’s so surprising about that?"
"Sister Xiaohong, I’m just saying——" Liulu looked wronged.
Taohong looked distracted for a moment. Liulu did not say that there are people around, this was what they were subconsciously thinking.
"Miss——" Taohong looked to Cui Xiaoxin, whispering: "How about we go back first? We can come back tomorrow when there are bodyguards?"
Cui Xiaoxin’s expression grew serious, staying quiet and not saying a word.
Li Muyang’s heart was about to jump out his throat.
He thought he was luckily saved since it was dark and cold outside.
He thought that Cui Xiaoxin would certainly not dare to stay long in a place like this with two servant girls, and would hurriedly take a bath and hurry back to rest.
He did not expect Cui Xiaoxin to be braver than ordinary people, and even more did not expect Liulu to be coincidentally sitting on the rock that was pressing on his clothes.
All sorts of chance and coincidence collided together, becoming a big mistake.
Li Muyang did not dare move an inch, this was the moment that he needed to stay calm.
He was waiting for Cui Xiaoxin to make a decision.
Taohong and Liulu were also waiting for Cui Xiaoxin's decision.
"Miss——" said Taohong, urging.
"Go back." Cui Xiaoxin said aloud.
When she said these words, not only did she not feel relax, but more nervous and tenser than before.
She had a bad feeling. She felt that there was a pair of eyes hiding in the dark, peeping at her, watching her every move.
When she was soaking in the hot spring, the person could not see anything.
If she got up and dressed, she would expose herself.
This hot spring had become her safety barrier.
"Liulu, clothes." Taohong got out of the hot spring first to pull the young miss up.
Liulu brought over a set of clean clothes, standing by the edge waiting for the young miss to get up.
Taohong got out of the hotspring, her clothes soaked. There was no time to change into clean clothes, and when the cold wind blew she felt as though her body had froze.
"Miss, it is very cold, you need to change clothes." Taohong said, teeth clattering, reminding Cui Xiaoxin.
Miss was wearing clothes as she got into the water, she naturally had to take off the wet clothes to replace with clean dry underwear. Otherwise, when the wind blows, even the clothes will freeze. Not to mention that if she wore these clothes back, her outer layers will also be soaked?
But how could Miss change her clothes in the situation that they might be being watched?
Cui Xiaoxin also thought of this problem, frowning tight she said aloud: "Go back and change."
She could withstand the freezing coldness, but she cannot let her pure body to be seen.
"Yes. Miss." Taohong and Liulu had no better way, and could only pull Cui Xiaoxin up from the water with one of them standing on the right side and the other on the left.
It was another cry of a nightingale bird.
The voice was sorrowful, like a demon weeping.
Just as Cui Xiaoxin was getting out of the hot spring, she couldn't help looking up when she heard the cry.
She noticed a dark shadow moving towards them, which looked like a bird from afar.
As the shadows grew nearer, the bird’s body also grew larger.
As big as a person.
It had a human body, human limbs, human head, and the facial features, but also human eyes——
Those bloodthirsty and mad eyes were like two blood-holes.
"Not a bird, it’s a person——" Cui Xiaoxin mumbled.
Then she cried out in shock, her voice piercing the stillness of the night.
She was in the pure land of Buddhism, where there were senior monks standing guard nearby. Cui Xiaoxin inevitably relaxed her vigilance.
So, she did not bring a bodyguard when she went out to bathe. Of course, bringing a guard was also quite inconvenient.
She quietly crept out of the temple, and came to the hot spring with only two servants.
She just wanted to take a bath before going back to rest, she did not want to disturb or alarm anyone.
But she did not think that, in such a short moment of time, she had given the assassin an opportunity.
Cui Xiaoxin screamed out in fright.
Taohong and Liulu heard the Young miss scream, and also looked up.
When they raised their head, the pitch-black, eagle-like assassin was right before their eyes.
Like a sudden clap of thunder, a flash of lightning, in the blink of an eye, the speed of the assassin was astonishing.
They did not have a master on their side, even if they were now shouting and screaming, by the time the bodyguards made their way over here, most likely that the young miss and her two servants, the three defenseless girls, would have been killed.
"Miss——" Liulu’s eyes shot wide open, want to tell Miss to run, but as though her throat was being blocked by an object, no matter how hard she tried no words came out.
"Help——" Taohong was more clever, while issuing a loud warning she used her body to shield Cui Xiaoxin. In any case, she could help the young miss block an attack, even if it was only one attack, perhaps it would give the young miss a chance to survive?
The shadow was almost within reach, stretching out with a triangular black fork in his right hand.
The fork was long and slender, the three blades were incomparably sharp, flashing a terrifying dark light, and giving an oppressive feeling that it can pierce through all things in the world.
"Going to die?" Cui Xiaoxin said to herself.
"Going to die——" Cui Xiaoxin said to herself.
It was too late to have other thoughts, it was the only thought she could preserve.
Perhaps, life would end just like that?
The shadow knocked Taohong, who was blocking in front, flying and then the triangular fork thrusted towards Cui Xiaoxin’s chest.
The crisp sound of flesh being pierced could be heard.
Chapter 363: Looking for her saviour!
Fresh blood trickled down from the palm.
The blood dripped into the hot spring and disappeared without a trace in an instant.
At the most dangerous moment, when Cui Xiaoxin was on the verge of death, her chest was about to be pierced with a hole or rather three holes, suddenly from under the pool a black figure jumped, directly greeting the black fork with his flesh and blood–
No one thought that a person would spring up from the bottom of the hot spring. No one thought that, there would be a person hiding under the hot spring.
Cui Xiaoxin also didn't.
If she did, she would have already jumped out the hot spring. Would she have been relaxedly soaking in the hot spring up till now?
When Liulu found the clothes under the rock, the three of them thought that someone was peeping around. What they did not know is that the man was not hiding behind the rocks or in the bushes, but directly under the hot spring——Luckily the sky was dark, the hot spring was misty, and nothing could be seen.
It’s just that, it’s even more frightening to think of yourself bathing with a man hiding around, than being suddenly attacked by an assassin.
The assassin was even more frightened.
Almost frightened to death.
The assassin had tailed behind all the way to here before finally finding the spot to prepare for an attack. Just as success was within reach, a man had leapt out from under the hot spring, breaking the assassin's killing move and blocking the trident.
"Was this a bloody ambush?" The assassin thought.
"Could it be that they have discovered my presence, so set up this ambush to give me a taste of my own medicine, purposely lured me to attack and then launch a fatal blow——These people are very evil."
Cui Xiaoxin wanted to turn her head round to take a look.
However, her body seemed to be drained of strength.
Her neck was stiff as iron, and even if her mind wanted to turn around her head wouldn't listen at all.
She was staring fixedly at the trident that had been inserted into someone's palm, and the blood dripping into the hot spring.
"A familiar scene——" Cui Xiaoxin thought in her mind. "A scene I will never forget."
The assassin's glared at the figure that sprang from under the hot spring with his blood red eyes.
The man who jumped out of the hot spring was also firmly staring at the assassin who was trying to go further.
The trident was still thrusting forward, trying to pierce through the palm of Li Muyang’s and into Cui Xiaoxin’s chest.
How would Li Muyang let him get his way?
He would rather have his palm be stabbed through than to let the assassin hurt a patch of Cui Xiaoxin's skin.
The assassin tried several times, and finally gave up.
He came to find that the guy who was lying in ambush under the hot spring was incredibly powerful. It may take a lot of time if he wanted to forcibly carry out his assassination.
His body flew off like a huge bird.
At the same time as he left, the trident was finally yanked out of Li Muyang's palm.
The assassin came at an extremely fast speed, but was even faster when he left.
The body flashed in the dark sky and disappeared without a trace.
Once an assassination fails, escape thousands of miles away. This was the rule of the assassin world.
Cui Xiaoxin, as though have been depleted of strength, lher egs went weak and her body fell into the water with a 'thump'.
By the time she thought of something, she had exhausted her strength to get up from the hot spring to find her saviour. At that time, she realised he had gone far away, as if he had never came.
Left behind, was only the thick stench of blood.
"Taohong——Taohong——" Cui Xiaoxin shouted.
Taohong did not answer; she had been struck by the assassin and had not regained consciousness.
"Miss, I am here——I am here——"
Liulu finally reacted, got from the ground, whimpering: "Miss, are you okay? Miss, are you hurt?"
"I’m fine. I’m fine." Cui Xiaoxin desperately shook her head, grasping Liulu’s arm and asking, "Taohong? Where’s Taohong? Is she okay?"
"I don’t know." Liulu shook her head. "I was pushed by a strong force and fell to the ground. I don't know where Taohong had been pushed to."
Swoosh swoosh swoosh——
Several figures were flying toward this side.
"Miss Xiaxoin, are you all right?" Cui Xiaoxin’s bodyguards asked in a loud voice.
"Amitabha Buddha, has Miss Xiaoxin been wounded? Someone dares commit such malicious acts in the pure land of Buddhism, my Thousand Buddha Temple will chase the culprit down and give an explanation to Miss Xiaoxin——"
"I’m all right." Cui Xiaoxin said with a trembling voice. “
With the help of Liulu, Cui Xiaoxin got out of the hot spring.
The crowd, carrying lanterns, searched around and found Taohong unconscious in the bushes.
A bodyguard went over to check her breathing, Taohong slowly awakened, then cried out loud: "Miss——where is Miss?"
"Taohong, I’m all right." Cui Xiaoxin clenched Taohong’s hand, eyes welled with tears. At such a critical moment, she saw a faithful servant sacrificing her life for her.
The first thing that Taohong did as soon as she regained consciousness was to ask about her safety; to have a servant like her was very touching.
"Miss, I thought you were going to die——" said Taohong, hugging Cui Xiaoxin and crying.
In charge of the safety of Cui Xiaoxin for this trip, Cui family’s bodyguard Cui Yu knelt on the ground.
He knocked his head heavily against the ground, "I made Miss feel frightened, Cui Yu deserves to die. Please punish me heavily Miss."
Many of the bodyguards dropped to their knees.
"We made Miss feel frightened, we deserve to die. Please punish heavily Miss."
Cui Xiaoxin glanced at them and said, "Get up. Block off the front and back courtyards."
"Miss——" Cui Yu's expression went slightly stiff. The assassin's attack had failed, he naturally had gone far away. What is the use in blocking off the front and back courtyard? "
"Do as I told you." Cui Xiaoxin was frightened and cold. Wearing a wet layer of clothing with an arctic fox robe draped over her, she was shuddering uncontrollably. "
"Yes." I will block off the front and back courtyard." Cui Yu got up, motioned with his hand and many bodyguards followed after him into the distance.
Several patrolling night monks and monk Fa De walked over, deeply bowed to Cui Xioaxin with hands held in front: "Miss Xiaxoin had to encounter such a dangerous matter, please forgive Thousand Buddha Temple of being a bad host and us for not fulfilling our protection duties. We will report to Priest later and will punish ourselves."
"I was reckless, it has nothing to do with master. Can I ask Masters to help find the culprit and to find some clues." Cui Xiaoxin asked.
"Yes." Monk Fa De's face was crossed with a rare angry look as he said, "Someone dares commit crime in the Thousand Buddha Temple, do they take our Buddhism as nothing? This matter will not be left at that."
Cui Xiaoxin bowed her thanks, and with the support of Taohong and Liulu she hurriedly went back to change.
If she stayed any longer, even if the assassination had failed she would have froze to death on this cold night——
Bang bang bang——
A bodyguard slammed the door hard with his fist.
The door was tightly closed and no one answered.
"Knock again." The stubborn voice of a girl sounded.
Bang bang bang——
The bodyguard gritted his teeth, beating the door even harder.
The door of the room was pulled open from the inside, and Li Muyang, who was sleepy and dazed, looked at the crowd standing at the door carrying lanterns, and asked aloud, "What’s the matter? Why are you still awake at this time?"
"Li Mu, why did it take you that long to open the door?" Li Shinian purposely said with a sullen face.
"Miss——I was sleeping soundly and couldn’t hear a knock on the door."
"Hmph." Li Shinian said coldly. "Somebody wants to assassinate my Sister Xiaxoin, we are——"
She was worried that Li Muyang did not understand the whole story and tried to explain in a few words.
Li Muyang suddenly exclaimed, "I didn’t do it, Miss. I didn’t do anything. Today I was tired and fell asleep early."
"Of course we know you didn’t do it, you look sickly——you can’t even kill a chicken? But don’t worry, we’re not looking for the culprit, we’re looking for Sister Xiaoxin's saviour."
"Li Mu open out your hand." Cui Xiaoxin looked at Li Muyang with a piercing glance.
"Yes." Li Mu dared not refuse, hastily putting his open palm in front of Cui Xiaoxin.
A sword-wielding bodyguard moved the lantern closer, only to see that Li Muyang’s palm was smooth and rosy, with not a trace of a wound.
"The other hand." Cui Xiaoxin did not give up, and asked again.
Li Muyang did not say anything and spread open the other hand in front of Cui Xiaoxin.
Cui Xiaoxin examined his hand carefully, and found that there was also no wounds on his left hand.
"Not you——" Cui Xiaoxin mumbled.
"Miss Xiaxoin, it really is not me. I have done nothing——" Li Muyang explained.
"Idiot. It would be a good thing if it was you." Li Shinian snapped.
Cui Xiaoxin glanced at the back of the room, where Cui Meng was still in deep sleep, and occasionally there was a loud snoring sound.
"Wake him up." Cui Xiaoxin said.
A bodyguard rushed into the room, lifted up Cui Meng like a dead pig and threw him in front of Cui Xiaoxin.
Cui Meng's eyes shot open, when he saw the flames swaying in front and the shadows of swords, he suddenly turned pale with fright and sank to his knees in front of Cui Xiaoxin, crying: "Miss spare me, Miss spare me——Miss, I didn’t do anything. Accused, Miss I am being accused worngly."
"Cui Meng, when did you go to sleep?" Cui Xiaoxin asked coldly.
"I——" Cui Meng thought for a moment, before he answered, "I went to bed after I had eaten."
Cui Xiaoxin pointed to Li Muyang, asking loudly: "You two went to sleep the same time?"
Cui Meng shook his head. "No. Li Mu said to find a place to bathe, I went to bed first——"