“Yes? What is it, Yunfei?” Puzzled by what Bai Yunfei wanted, Chu Qingxue slowed as she turned to the table. Sitting down, she waited for Bai Yunfei to respond.
A moment was needed for Bai Yunfei to put away his spear and to think. “Auntie Xue, I just wanted to ask how you have felt ever since you started wearing those soul armaments I gave you.”
“You mean these accessories?” Chu Qingxue touched the bracelet on her left hand. “Thanks to these useful accessories, I feel much better now.”
“Auntie Xue, please dispense with the courtesies with me. I wasn’t asking about that, but rather about your old injury… is it better?”
Accessories that could improve the strength of the wearer weren’t all that important to a Soul Ancestor like Chu Qingxue. Plus, Bai Yunfei wasn’t asking about that.
“My old injury?” Chu Qingxue clarified, “It’s getting better. Ever since you gave me that one earring, I can feel myself getting better. These past few days have been…”
“Auntie Xue, I might not have been clear enough with my question.” Bai Yunfei cut her off, “What I wanted to ask is: after wearing the accessories I gave you, do you feel yourself growing physically stronger? For example, does your old injury hurt as much as before after wearing the earring? Or is your injury not flaring up as much now that you have the other accessories?”
“I…” The eyebrows on Chu Qingxue’s forehead creased together in thought. “I haven’t felt that with the accessories.” She shook her head, “but I did after wearing the earring. My wounds have gotten weaker rather than stronger, but what do you mean, Yunfei?”
She was confused by what Bai Yunfei was getting at, but the fact that Bai Yunfei didn’t immediately answer her made her even more suspicious.
“Yunfei, what is it? Is there something wrong?”
“Auntie Xue, how did you… get that injury?” He asked carefully after a moment of consideration.
“How’d I get it? What brought this up, Yunfei?” Chu Qingxue hesitated to answer since she hadn’t expected to be asked such a auestion.
Bai Yunfei caught her hesitation and moved to correct himself. “If auntie Xue doesn’t want to talk about it, then please let me ask another question. Do you know what kind of injury was inflicted on you?”
“What kind of injury? The elemental power of an enemy seeped into my body and started to injure me, especially in the area around my shoulder. It targeted the acupoints located there. That’s why I have occasional breakouts from the wound. I’ve tried many treatments in the past, but for some reason, none of them worked. After some time, I decided to give up on a cure…”
The pensive look on Bai Yunfei’s face prompted Chu Qingxue to ask again, “What is it? Why have you asked me such a question, Yunfei?”
“Auntie Xue,” Bai Yunfei began, “I need to tell you something. It’s my belief that your injury isn’t what you think it is. It’s possible that you’ve been… poisoned!!”
“Poisoned!?” His answer only served to astound the woman, “I’ve been poisoned? What do you mean, and for what reason?”
Still looking as grave as ever, Bai Yunfei began to explain his reasoning, “Auntie Xue, the earring I gave you isn’t capable of increasing the strength of its wearer. It has a special effect… by wearing it, any person will find their resistance to poison increased! You’ve said that you felt better after wearing it, so I had my suspicions before about your injury. It wasn’t some sort of long-lasting wound, but rather, it was the symptoms of being poisoned!”
“But… but how could this earring be capable of something like that? And… poison? How could that be?” The blood drained from Chu Qingxue’s face because of her shock. She looked like she was trying to remember the situation behind her injury.
The Detoxifying EarringEquipment Grade: Mid Human
Bai Yunfei’s suspicions of Chu Qingxue’s wounds first began when she mentioned that she was feeling better after wearing the earring. The additional strength granted by the earring wouldn’t have been significant enough for a Soul Ancestor to even mention. A paltry increase of over two hundred points of strength wouldn’t have been enough to help her get better that fast.
Only one conclusion could be drawn: it was the additional effect of the earring that was helping her!
If a fifteen percent increase of resistivity to poison was helping Chu Qingxue feel better, that could only mean that she had been poisoned!
Bai Yunfei didn’t dare mention this possibility to her without the facts. That is why he gave Chu Qingxue a set of accessories to improve her strength. He then observed her physical recuperation after that. With this experiment, Bai Yunfei was able to slowly confirm his hypothesis and find the answer to his question.
As of right now, he was more than ninety percent sure that Chu Qingxue had been poisoned!
Obviously, the only time he could ask Chu Qingxue was when she was alone. He didn’t want to worry Tang Xinyun nor did he know if Chu Qingxue was keeping it a secret from her. Hence, it was better to confirm it himself before he did anything else.
Bai Yunfei wasn’t necessarily afraid of letting the effects of the earring be made known either. As long as no one knew that it was him that had made this earring go from having ‘no’ effect to having ‘an’ effect, he would be safe. If anything, he could pretend that it was the inherent ability of the soul armament just like how the Violet Soul Ring and the Violet Soul Bracelet had their own special effects.
Chu Qingxue went through a period of internal debate and silence before finally looking back at Bai Yunfei, “Yunfei, I’d like to ask something from you…”
“Eh? What can I help you with, auntie Xue? Do you have any clues about how you were poisoned?”
“It’s not that. I would like to ask you to not tell Xinyun about this.”
“Oh, you don’t want her to know? I can promise that I won’t tell her for now, but since you were poisoned, I really feel that you should…”
“It’s best that you do not look into why I was poisoned, okay?”
He hadn’t expected that.
“Auntie Xue, what did you say?”
“I’m saying that I know about this matter now, but you shouldn’t look into it, okay, Yunfei? I will handle this myself…”
He was stunned. He had thought that after he had learned the truth behind her wounds, he’d be able to find a way to help her treat her wounds, but asking Bai Yunfei to ignore the matter was…
He still had plenty of questions he wanted to ask, but the look in Chu Qinguxe’s eyes was more than enough to make him think twice about asking. Freezing up before anything more could be said, Bai Yunfei gave a slow but silent nod.
“I understand, auntie Xue. I’ll do as you say…”
The older woman was clearly afraid of talking about something. If Bai Yunfei had to put his finger to it, she looked concerned, even afraid.
With the situation in an unknown state, Bai Yunfei could only agree to Chu Qingxue’s request. However, he was already secretly thinking about trying to make some accessories that could further increase one’s resistance to poison.
That way, he’d be able to help treat Chu Qingxue.
Even after Tang Xinyun came back, Bai Yunfei kept his promise with Chu Qingxue. Without the slightest indication that anything was wrong, Chu Qingxue smiled when her daughter returned so that Tang Xinyun wouldn’t be able to tell that she was concerned about being poisoned.
Like the interlude to a musical piece, this event hadn’t changed anything in the slightest between Tang Xinyun and her mother.
Just like that, the warm and peaceful days went by without further incident.
Soon, two months had passed since Bai Yunfei and Tang Xinyun had arrived in Mo City. On the twenty-fifth day of the tenth month, the two crafters finally decided to return to the Crafting School…