The Dragon

The Dragon By Dec 20, 2023 5 Comments
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Previous: Chapter 121

Chapter 122

“How can it help if you go?”

Gu Fuyou laid on Zhong Michu’s legs, calm and obedient.

Zhong Michu looked down. Outside, she was a fierce beast with icy eyes, but now she was smooth and stretched out, lazily nestling in Zhong Michu’s arms, her eyes half-closed. Zhong Michu affectionately stroked her long hair, “Since they want to reason, then we’ll ‘reason’ with them.”

“It won’t work with them.” Those kind of people…

“Courtesy first, force second.” Zhong Michu didn’t truly believe it would come to a fight. To put it bluntly, Li Mingjing was shameless, but on a more positive note, he was clever.

If they started a fight and released Zhuyan, who would benefit? Li Mingjing surely understood this. His posturing was merely a tactic to negotiate terms.

Given that Gu Fuyou had the support of the Dragon and Azure Phoenix clans, and the immortal sects were weaker, they could only claim that Gu Fuyou first attacked the Beizhou and Dongzhou. By doing so, he wanted the cultivators to believe Gu Fuyou started the conflict, morally suppressing her.

The three immortal sects were different from the Xu Ling Sect. The Xu Ling Sect was openly corrupt, and when Gu Fuyou destroyed it, no one blamed her. In fact, many were pleased. The three sects had decent reputations, especially the Qianyun Sect of the Beizhou, known for its integrity. If Gu Fuyou attacked without reason, she’d face widespread condemnation.

“If you fight them directly, it’ll seem like you’re reacting out of spite, proving their accusations of your ‘wild and cruel’ nature. You’ll lose any moral high ground and ruin your reputation.” If all three continents turned against you, whether or not the four sects suppress Zhuyan wouldn’t matter. The best way to divert internal conflicts is to unite against a common enemy.

Gu Fuyou, resting on Zhong Michu’s legs and propping her head on her arm, grabbed Zhong Michu’s hand, turned to face her, and looked up with a puzzled smile, “Hmm?”

“Reputation, does Gu Fuyou still have a reputation? I’m an evil soul from the underworld, stirring trouble in Nanzhou and bringing turmoil to the entire world.”

“The fact that the corrupt Zuo family collapsed because of you is a blessing for Nanzhou, not a curse.” Zhong Michu said, taking Gu Fuyou’s hand and gently turning her face towards her. Finding the angle awkward for her neck, Gu Fuyou simply shifted, rolling over to lie on her back with her head resting in Zhong Michu’s lap. In response, Zhong Michu tenderly stroked her cheek, her touch as delicate as one would use on a flower petal. “Scholar Zhai told me that many family heads admire you greatly.”

Gu Fuyou understood and asked further, “What else did Scholar Zhai tell you?”

Zhong Michu replied, “She also mentioned that you didn’t personally deal with the members of the Zuo family. Instead, you handed them over to various family heads.”

Gu Fuyou sat up, placing a hand on Zhong Michu’s leg and leaning closer, “I told Scholar Zhai to say that. In reality, I tortured those Zuo family members to death myself.” She narrowed her eyes and gritted her teeth, displaying a fierce determination.

Zhong Michu smiled without a word, knowing Gu Fuyou was teasing her.

Gu Fuyou’s method may not have been ideal. It’s possible that if members of the Zuo family had been handed over to someone else, they might not have faced a fair judgment. Perhaps they would have encountered a more lenient person, someone who would have spared their lives, allowing them to lead ordinary existences. Whether their lives would have been fortunate or ill-fated would have hinged on their destiny. However, for Gu Fuyou, her decision was the best she felt she could make under the circumstances.

As it turned out, Gu Fuyou, despite being irritable and defensive, she was still receptive to Zhong Michu’s words. This was enough to comfort her.

In this world, no two souls are a perfect match.

To achieve such a seamless bond, they need to grind and polish each other.

With so many twists and turns in the outside world, they needed to be even closer to each other, tightly holding together, to face the adversities of life. Otherwise, they might end up like Qing Jun and Di Yi.

Upon seeing that Zhong Michu wasn’t buying her act, Gu Fuyou shifted the topic to reputation, remarked, “In this world, a villain can commit a thousand wrongs, but doing one good deed redeems them. But, a good person, after performing a thousand good deeds, is condemned for a single mistake.”

Laying her head on Zhong Michu’s shoulder like a boneless creature, Gu Fuyou sighed, “Oh, Zhong Michu, it seems easier to be bad. Let’s fully embrace being villains, living freely without restraint, and then turn to doing good. That way, we can still cleanse ourselves of all wrongdoings.”

Zhong Michu responded, “Whether we do good or evil, it isn’t for the eyes of others but for ourselves. We aren’t driven by the world’s praise, and its criticism doesn’t hold us back. No matter what we do, we must stay true to our original intentions.”

Gu Fuyou fell silent. Zhong Michu gently patted her shoulder, “It’s easier to conquer a city than to defend it. If you want to protect Nanzhou and hope for its prosperity to surpass the past, you can’t always be aggressive. You should be more cautious.”

Seeing her earnest advice, Gu Fuyou didn’t feel impatient but rather softened, “Your Majesty has been governing the Four Seas for many years and has much insight.”

Zhong Michu candidly admitted, “I was clueless at first, just learning step by step. I wasn’t suited for, nor did I enjoy giving orders and holding the power of life and death as a ruler. But being in this position, I’ve tried to fulfill my responsibilities.”

Gu Fuyou gazed at Zhong Michu, remaining silent for a long while as if thinking. After a moment, she broke into a slight smile and said, “Since Your Majesty has decided to go on my behalf, I’m more than happy to stay out of it.”

It was supposed to be her own task, but she knew her temperament. If she were to handle it herself, she might not hold back and things could get violent. It needed someone calm and sharp.

Although Zhong Michu was still recovering from her injuries, but unfortunately, despite having Scholar Zhai, Xiao Zhongting, and others, their status wasn’t enough to press down on people like Li Mingjing. Although there was Jiu Yao, their relationship was not deep enough. All things considered, only Zhong Michu was the most suitable. Zhong Michu must have thought it through before offering to go for her.

Ever since the incident at Xian Luo, Gu Fuyou had been tender towards Zhong Michu, letting her have her way in many things. She knew that Zhong Michu had her best interests at heart, and if she wanted to go, Gu Fuyou would let her. She wasn’t concerned about the outcome.

Holding Zhong Michu’s face in her hands, she spoke, “Just one thing—”

Her eyes moved back and forth, examining Zhong Michu’s face, “You must return exactly as you leave. If they dare to set a trap for you, and you even get a scratch, I’ll chop them up and feed them to the dogs.” Her voice was gentle, yet her words were fierce.

Zhong Michu laughed softly. How could they harm her?

For the sake of fulfilling Qing Jun’s wishes, Qing Zhe escorted Zhong Michu to the Biluo Sect. Who would dare to mess with Zhong Michu under the watch of this great cultivator?

It had been less than half a year since their last visit to the Biluo Sect, yet it felt like a lifetime had passed. So many significant events had occurred, even enemies had become friends.

One day found Gu Fuyou seated cross-legged in her study, a zither positioned on the desk before her. At first, she played with meticulous form and melody, but suddenly, she plucked the strings with a jarring force, producing a discordant clang. Leaning back, Gu Fuyou declared in a burst of exasperation, “I’m not playing anymore.”

Ever since they returned from the Xian Luo to the Thirty-Three Skies, Zhong Michu began teaching her to play the zither. When Zhong Michu guided her hand in hand, she had the patience to play a bit. But left to play by herself, she quickly lost interest.

“Playing the zither is supposed to calm the mind, but you become even more agitated the more you play.”

Hearing the voice, Gu Fuyou opened her eyes to find Zhong Michu was right above her, looking down.

Gu Fuyou immediately sat up and turned around, her face breaking into a smile, “You’re back.” Realizing she seemed too excited like a dog eagerly awaiting its owner’s return, wagging its tail the moment it sees them, she felt embarrassed.

Eager to regain her composure, she instantly put on a serious face and said, “Come here, let me see you. If even a single hair is out of place, I’ll go settle the score with Li Mingjing.”

Zhong Michu sat down beside her with a smile. “Do you know how many hairs I have on my head?”

“Of course.” She blurted out, “I know every inch of you.”

Zhong Michu looked surprised, turning her face to look at Gu Fuyou with a meaningful expression.

Gu Fuyou hesitated. What she meant was, when Zhong Michu was seriously injured and unconscious, the spiritual thread used to stitch her wounds needed to be replaced frequently.

Gu Fuyou had been the one assisting Qing Man when the thread was changed, and Zhong Michu’s wounds covered her entire body, requiring her to be undressed for treatment, thus had seen every part of Zhong Michu’s body, which explained her confident statement. However, Zhong Michu was unaware of this.

Gu Fuyou felt uncomfortable under Zhong Michu’s gaze. She played random notes on the zither and quickly changed the subject, “What did Li Mingjing and the others say?”

“You’re doing it wrong,” Zhong Michu corrected her on how to press the zither strings, “They said they will leave you alone if you relinquish your power.”

“Wait, what?” Gu Fuyou was puzzled. “What do you mean by ‘relinquish my power’? I don’t really get it.”

Zhong Michu explained, “They want you to give up your position as the ruler of Nanzhou and also to release your slaves.”

There was a difference of opinion among the leaders of the Three Immortal Sects. Nianhua disagreed with the other two leaders and left the meeting early. The remaining two, not entirely familiar with the actual situation in Nanzhou, after careful consideration, proposed these two conditions.

After reflecting for a moment, Gu Fuyou realized something and laughed, “According to them, I’m not even the ruler of Nanzhou anymore.”

“Every city in Nanzhou is self-governed, and they don’t need to contribute spirit stones. Even the cities previously controlled by the Zuo family have been distributed among various noble families.”

“I only have control over Xiaoyao City and live in the Thirty-Three Skies. Ah, I’ll just move out of here tomorrow and go back to my Xiaoyao City.” Without any major events, her title was basically ceremonial.

“As for the slaves…” Gu Fuyou thought of something and asked, “They wouldn’t want to take them, would they?” Li Mingjing and the others probably didn’t know she could break the slave contracts. The numerous slaves were a major force under her command. If she was to give up her power, it meant someone else would have to take over.

Zhong Michu nodded “They didn’t say it outright,” but it was clear they were thinking along those lines.

“Haha,” Gu Fuyou laughed mockingly, “They’re too late.”

Li Mingjing’s suggestion reminded her of something. She initially intended to release the slaves once things settled down, and she had promised in Bailu City to teach Feng Sui how to break the slave contracts. However, due to a series of events and getting used to wielding power, she kept postponing it. Even now, Feng Sui hadn’t reminded her.

“If they want me to release the slaves, I might as well do it thoroughly. I’ll free all of them and let them live as normal people. What do you think, Zhong Michu?”

Zhong Michu looked at her, eyes filled with love. Gu Fuyou had no idea how radiant and inspiring she appeared when she said those words. “Good.”

Gu Fuyou tilted her chin up, looking thoughtful, “While both of these conditions aren’t hard for me to meet, agreeing to them without conditions makes me look like I’m at a disadvantage. It’s like admitting I’m wrong and compromising. No, I need to set some conditions too.”

As an idea began to form in Gu Fuyou’s eyes, Zhong Michu already spoke up. Together they exclaimed, “They should hand over Du Pan.”

The two exchanged a smile. However, as Gu Fuyou’s gaze shifted away, her smile turned cold. “Du Pan. Let him taste the flavor of being a fugitive.”

She then had another thought and moved closer, wrapping her arms around Zhong Michu’s waist.

Noting her slimmer frame, she frowned slightly. “They should also build a shrine for you. Your Majesty risked her life to seal Zhuyan, securing peace for generations. Your achievements should be remembered forever.” She didn’t mind her own accomplishments being overlooked, but she was not willing to let Zhong Michu’s contributions be buried in obscurity.

Zhong Michu replied, “They won’t admit to it.”

Gu Fuyou’s expression fell once more. Zhong Michu gently cradled Gu Fuyou’s head, gently rubbed the small hairs on her neck, “They don’t need to admit it. In fact, it’s better if they don’t.”

Zhong Michu gazed into the distance, her voice soft and mysterious, “There are no secrets that stay hidden forever. If something has been done, there will always be traces. Sooner or later, someone will uncover the truth and when they do, the credibility of the immortal sects will be shattered.”

An idea suddenly came to Gu Fuyou, and she jumped up excitedly, “That’s it! I’ll call Yuan Shan!”

She gave a mischievous grin, “I’ll disguise it and parade it around the other three continents. It’s important that those city lords who are loyal to the immortal sects, as well as the noble families groveling at their feet, see this.” Yuan Shan, once dressed up, would resemble Zhuyan closely; otherwise, the Four Sects wouldn’t have used it for their previous ruse.

Gu Fuyou was like a mischievous child excited about playing a prank. As she left, Zhong Michu’s eyes followed her with a blend of fondness and helplessness.

Turning her attention back, Zhong Michu’s fingers danced gracefully over the zither strings, producing a melodious sound.

She thought, “The dominance of the Four Immortal Sects cannot last forever.”

Humanity differs from the Azure Phoenix and Dragon Clans, which rely on faith and bloodline to unite their people, making their royal families crucial and irreplaceable. Humans, in contrast, are born equal.

Nanzhou has already undergone significant changes. It may not be obvious now, but give it ten, twenty years. The noble families and sects in Nanzhou, free from oppression and allowed to develop, will grow rapidly. Seeing the benefits, the major families in the other three continents won’t stay silent.

When everyone is confined to a cage, they may not perceive it as unjust, especially if they take pride in their cage appearing larger than others.

But once someone opens the cage to a vast world, those still caged will become envious, resentful, and restless. When they learn the truth of the past, their anger will spark a rebellion.

The turmoil in the other three continents is inevitable. Subtle influence, more effective than any weapon.

Gu Fuyou is like a whirlwind, sweeping away old, decaying rules.

The chains that bind the four continents are rattling in this storm.

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Previous: Chapter 121


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6 months ago

Thanks for the chapter..

6 months ago

It’s nice to see the Gu Fuyou has moved on from violent revenge to spicy pranks. I was wondering when she’d release the slaves since her ability to break the contracts was brought up before she even acquired them.

Thanks for the translations!

6 months ago

>>> In this world, no two souls are a perfect match.

To achieve such a seamless bond, they need to grind and polish each other.

With so many twists and turns in the outside world, they needed to be even closer to each other, tightly holding together, to face the adversities of life.

I very much did like this chapter.

4 months ago

This is a nice and peaceful chapter haha. Thanks translator-sama!

18 days ago

Lmao Fuyou is so mischievous I love it.
So happy seeing them being soft like this, and seeing Fuyou still have her moral make me proud lmao