Chapter 837 – Standing in the Snow
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
The entire continent knew that even the Tianhai Divine Empress had held a rather considerable respect for the Tang Old Master.
Chen Changsheng had learned from Tang Thirty-Six that even though the Tang Old Master cursed the Tianhai clan every day, these curses very rarely touched upon the Empress herself.
When the Tianhai Divine Empress issued a decree inviting the Tang Old Master into the capital, the Tang Old Master had refused to accept the decree. This was a very tough stance from which one could see a few problems in their relationship.
The Tang Old Master did not like the Tianhai Divine Empress. In his eyes, she was a Demon Empress.
But the Tianhai Divine Empress had always stirred dread in his heart, and in a few aspects, even admiration.
Chen Changsheng said, "In exchange for this cup of tea, I hope that Sir will hear two sentences of mine."
If he had said these two sentences of his own volition after entering the old estate, he naturally could have had the Tang Old Master hear them.
But hearing did not mean listening.
He wanted the Tang Old Master to very seriously hear his words, to listen to them.
To have those words enter his ear, enter his heart.
The Tang Old Master still said nothing, perhaps giving his silent consent.
"The Tang First Master is not ill, but poisoned."
This was Chen Changsheng's first sentence.
The Tang Old Master's expression did not change, as if he had not heard those words.
"The Tang Second Master is colluding with the Demon race."
This was Chen Changsheng's second sentence.
The Tang Old Master slightly narrowed his eyes and then very slowly placed his cup back on the table.
He looked at Chen Changsheng, his voice devoid of emotion. "Your Holiness the Pope's sword is truly sharp, its trajectory very clear, but you should not have used it today."
These two sentences truly were swords.
They were two strikes of the Intellectual Sword that Chen Changsheng had prepared for a very long time.
This was a sword style he had learned from Su Li.
The Tang Old Master had known Su Li for many years and had a very close relationship with him, so how could he not recognize it?
Thus, for the first time, the Old Master addressed him as 'Your Holiness the Pope'.
Starting from this moment, there was no more senior and junior, no porridge and pickled vegetables, pouring and drinking tea, or an old relationship between mahjong partners.
"I did not voluntarily take out my sword, but was forced to use it in defense."
Chen Changsheng was not affected in any way by the Tang Old Master's stance, calmly saying, "On that night in the mountains, the Tang clan was the first to strike. Later on, in Hanqiu City and one night ago, someone wanted to kill me. This being the case, I have no reason to not respond."
The Tang Old Master gave a concise response: "Proof."
Even if Chen Changsheng was the Pope, he could not wantonly accuse the Tang clan of anything without proof.
This was the Tang clan's old estate, not the Mount Song Army headquarters. His opponents were not those princes and Divine Generals, but the Tang Old Master.
"I have no proof." Chen Changsheng did not wait for the Tang Old Master to express his opinion, but continued, "Besides those words from the Demon Lord, I do not have a single shred of proof, and the Demon Lord's words naturally could have been meant for sowing discord, but I do have a witness: Demon Princess Nanke. She is currently somewhat of an imbecile, so she certainly wouldn't lie."
The Tang Old Master narrowed his eyes even more. They did not seem like the eyes of an old fox, but a formidable sheet of rock in the mountains that had been battered by storms and eroded by wind for countless years.
"Then what does Your Holiness the Pope want me to agree to?"
"I need two hours."
"Time has always belonged to oneself."
"I need two hours of Wenshui City's time."
Chen Changsheng looked at the Tang Old Master and said, "In these two hours, I will find the Longevity Sect's monster. It will serve as proof."
What was meant by two hours of Wenshui City's time? He did not explicitly state his meaning, but the intent was loud and clear. For these two hours, he hoped that the Tang clan would hand control over Wenshui City to the Orthodoxy, and when the Orthodoxy conducted its search and pursuit, the Tang clan would not be able to interfere.
Without question, this was a fantastical and absurd request.
Over the countless years, no one, not even Emperor Taizong or the Tianhai Divine Empress, had been able to truly control Wenshui City.
This was what Chen Changsheng now wanted. Even if it was only for the brief span of two hours, it was still not something the Tang clan could accept.
The result of the negotiations was seemingly foreordained from the very start.
But Chen Changsheng still proposed it, because he hoped that that senior had been able to change the Tang Old Master's view.
Regretfully, his hopes were not realized.
"Three days ago, he sat where you were sitting and the words he said had about the same meaning as yours, but I did not agree."
The Tang Old Master expressionlessly gazed at him. "Unless Your Holiness the Pope can persuade him to change his surname, there is nothing to discuss."
There was a short pause, then Chen Changsheng asked, "Even if Sir clearly understands that there is a problem within the Tang clan, and clearly knows that the proof is right in Wenshui City?"
"Do you think that I care about these things? Your Holiness, you are still too young. You have no idea of all the dark and sinister things we elders have experienced. If I don't want to believe it, I won't believe it. If you want to change my mind, you must pay the appropriate price."
The Tang Old Master glanced at the old umbrella leaning by the door and said, "Just making me reminisce is far from enough."
Chen Changsheng thought for a while, then said, "I hope that Sir will continue to think about it."
The Tang Old Master replied, "I have already made my decision."
Chen Changsheng answered, "Sir does not need to rush. I can wait."
The Tang Old Master said, "I don't like outsiders in my home."
Chen Changsheng replied, "I can wait outside the old estate."
The Tang Old Master said, "As you please."
Chen Changsheng rose and left the room. Stepping over the threshold, he took the old umbrella and exited the courtyard.
While he was speaking with the Tang Old Master, the snow had been falling harder and harder. The flagstones were now covered in a thick layer of snow that was rather soft and very comfortable to walk on.
Umbrella unfurled, Chen Changsheng left the old estate under the guidance of the old Guardian.
Linghai Zhiwang and the others were waiting for him.
Chen Changsheng shook his head.
No one appeared surprised, as they had guessed in advance that the Tang Old Master would never agree to such a request.
The Pope's request was logically the best method for directly tearing down the black curtain and finding the instigator of this plot, but…
What if the instigator was the Tang Old Master? Even if it wasn't, Wenshui City was the Tang clan, and the Tang clan was the Tang Old Master. If the Pope wanted to raise the layers of curtains shrouding Wenshui City, was this not essentially raising the Tang Old Master's clothes to see what was inside? The Tang Old Master could never agree.
They were prepared to escort Chen Changsheng back onto the carriage so that they could return to the Daoist church and discuss their next course of action.
Chen Changsheng once more shook his head. He turned to face the Tang clan's old estate and, just like that, began his vigil in the snow.
Countless eyes fell on his body, at first puzzled and confused, rapidly becoming shocked.
Was the Pope really intending to stand in the snow and wait for the Tang Old Master to change his mind?
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