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The Dragon

The Dragon By Oct 22, 2023 7 Comments
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Previous: Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Nanzhu Drunk, Ah Man Branded

Because Gu Fuyou had only summoned Zhong Michu during critical moments, only twice in fact, and had always kept her promise not to misuse their contract, Zhong Michu assumed this summoning meant that Gu Fuyou was in danger.

However, when she responded to the summons, she found herself on a bustling street, with tall red lanterns, fluttering colored ribbons, and a crowd of passersby. It was excessively lively.

Zhong Michu didn’t see Gu Fuyou anywhere and began to search for her when she heard someone calling her from above.

She looked up and, perhaps it was because of Gu Fuyou’s sweet smile, she spotted her instantly among the crowd leaning over the balcony.

Gu Fuyou was dressed in a vibrant red gown, her long hair braided and resting on her shoulders, with a lily tucked behind her ear. She was radiant, as dazzling as the morning sun.

Gu Fuyou then took the flower from her ear and tossed it down.

Zhong Michu, still clueless, caught the flower but didn’t understand why.

Soon after, a shower of flowers cascaded down from the towering red building.

There was the sound of happy chatter and laughter from above, as if all the world’s excitement had converged at this place.

Gu Fuyou was about to invite her up when Zhu Ruo commented, “Why did Miss Zhong leave?”

Gu Fuyou leaned over the railing and peered down, and sure enough, Zhong Michu was walking away. “She’s shy,” she noted.

Gu Fuyou called out to her twice with no response.  In a moment of anxiety, she forgot their agreement and retrieved the summoning talisman, calling out,”Nanzhu Jun.”

This time, with better control, she summoned Zhong Michu directly to her side.

Zhong Michu, who had been walking forward, felt a sudden shift in her surroundings. She found herself on a balcony, naturally taking a couple more steps forward. Realizing something was off, she abruptly turned back to face Gu Fuyou.

Gu Fuyou greeted, “Senior Sister Zhong.”

Zhong Michu responded, “I thought you were in danger.”

Her tone seemed a bit off, probably annoyed.

Just as Gu Fuyou was about to explain, Zhong Michu approached her, handing back the lily, stating gravely, “Here, I’m returning this to you.”

Preoccupied with the idea that Zhong Michu was upset, Gu Fuyou reflexively accepted the flower, not immediately grasping its deeper significance.

However, Zhu Ruo and the others, being observant bystanders, noticed the exchange. Someone couldn’t help but chuckle, leading everyone to burst into laughter.

Hearing the laughter, Gu Fuyou had a sudden realization. She looked at the flower in her hand, feeling as if it were burning her, causing her entire body to heat up. Her face was probably blazing red

In ancient times, men and women expressed their affections subtly. Women would throw fruits from buildings at the men they admired, and men would throw flowers to women they were fond of.

This custom has slightly changed nowadays; it’s more of a broad gesture of admiration or affection.

Gu Fuyou throwing the flower was to show her admiration for Zhong Michu. The others might have joined in because they found Zhong Michu pleasing to the eye or just to join the fun.

Throwing a flower was no big deal, normally.

But Zhong Michu only caught the flower thrown by Gu Fuyou and gave it back. Gu Fuyou actually accepted it, which changed the entire implication of the gesture.

In the past, such an act conveyed mutual affection. Today, it remains the same.

Gu Fuyou said, “Sister Zhu, please stop laughing. She rarely descends the mountain and doesn’t understand these customs!” Zhong Michu is a proper lady, not one to casually accept gifts, so she naturally wanted to return the flower; and being polite, though angry, she wouldn’t throw the flower at her but handed it over instead.

The other women laughed so hard they could barely contain themselves. Zhu Ruo, wiping away tears of laughter, said, “She might not know, but how could you not?”

Biting her lip, Gu Fuyou admitted, “I didn’t think of it at the moment!”

Zhong Michu might not have known the significance, but she understood it had something to do with the flower.

Seeing her expression, Zhu Ruo, still laughing, said, “Miss Zhong might not be aware of the meaning of catching and returning a flower. Let me tell you…”

Gu Fuyou yelled, “Ahhhh!!! Sister Zhu, please don’t tell her, I’m dying of embarrassment.”

But Zhu Ruo, not one to let go of a teasing opportunity, continued, “This flower, you see…”

Gu pleaded, “Sister Zhu, spare me. If you really tell her, I’ll jump off here and end my life.”

Zhu Ruo retorted, “You won’t die from jumping.”

Inside, the table was set with food and drinks. Gu Huaiyou came out and announced, “Okay, stop teasing, the feast is ready. Please invite Senior Sister to join.”

Gu Fuyou agreed and, turning around, took Zhong Michu by the sleeve, saying, “Senior Sister Zhong, don’t be mad, they’re just joking. I invited you to express my gratitude for your help in Xian Luo on several occasions. Brother Liu is here today as well; we should all gather and celebrate.”

Before Zhong Michu could speak, Liu Guizhen appeared, and they exchanged greetings. Liu Guizhen bowed, “Congratulations, senior sister, on your advancement.”

“Thank you.”

Hearing this, Gu Fuyou’s face lit up with excitement. “Senior Sister Zhong, you’ve advanced in your cultivation?!”

Upon Zhong Michu’s arrival, Gu Fuyou sensed something was off, only to realize that Zhong had broken through to the mid-stage of the Golden Core.

She had guessed right; after a trip to Xian Luo, Zhong Michu had indeed made a breakthrough.

“It’s all thanks to the strange treasure you gave me,” Zhong Michu said.

She had absorbed it, and in just over a month, she’d digested about half, breaking through to the mid-stage of the Golden Core. Even now, her spiritual power was still slowly accumulating.

“In that case, we must celebrate even more. You can’t leave,” Gu Fuyou insisted.

With a playful tug on Zhong Michu’s sleeve, she led her inside and made her sit.

Previously, Gu Fuyou wouldn’t have overstepped unless they were in a life-threatening situation. She wouldn’t blatantly push Zhong’s boundaries. But now, seeing her in a different light, she got a bit carried away.

The girls began to play their pipas after tuning them, the music lively and like pearls dropping onto a jade plate.

Zhu Ruo said, “I know cultivators avoid impurities found in grains. These dishes are all made from spirit plants and won’t harm your cultivation.”

Sitting beside Zhong Michu, Gu Fuyou attentively served her dishes, saying, “Senior Sister Zhong, try some.”

“I’ve already renounced food,” Zhong Michu replied.

Gu Fuyou persisted, “I know, I know. But as a the sages say – there are certain tastes in life one must experience.”

Si Miao teased from the side, laughed. “I bet that ‘sage’ was you.”

Gu Fuyou, playfully tossing a fruit at her, picked up a slice of bamboo shoot, urging Zhong Michu, “Sister Zhong, just taste it. The culinary skills of Yinxue Pavilion are renowned. It’s truly delicious; I swear you won’t forget it after tasting.”I swear.”

After hesitating for a moment, Zhong Michu opened her mouth slightly, her pearly white teeth bit into the bamboo shoot, and with a flick of her tongue, she ate it.

It wasn’t Gu Fuyou’s sweet words that moved her, but something Gu Fuyou had said earlier: “There are certain tastes in life that one must experience.”

No one had ever spoken to her in such a way. Her mentors always preached “Preserve the Dao, eliminate human desires; you’re an immortal, not a human.”

Was discarding personal desires snd pursuing the Great Dao to become an immortal important, or was living joyfully and freely, cultivating as fate allowed, better?

In reality, the two notions aren’t conflicting. But the mentors who guided Zhong Michu valued her talents, knowing she had the fate of an immortal. They feared she might become distracted and lose her way, wasting her potential. Hence, they chose the former path for her, shielding her from worldly temptations and guiding her to focus solely on cultivation.

Because she couldn’t leave Gushen Peak in her younger days and was too lazy to leave the mountains as she grew older, she gradually became like a caged canary.

What she initially wanted, she had long forgotten.

Yet, for some reason, after meeting Gu Fuyou, she slowly began to remember.

Gu Fuyou, holding her chopsticks, grinned from ear to ear, looking like she had accomplished something major, radiating a sense of achievement.

The group enjoyed their meal and conversation, but in reality, most of the talking was done by Gu Fuyou and her two companions. Liu Guizhen spoke only occasionally, and Zhong Michu spoke even less.

When the meal was over, Gu Fuyou remembered she had yet to settle the price of the spiritual pills with Zhu Ruo. She discreetly pulled Zhu Ruo aside in the hallway.

Gu Fuyou said, “Sister Zhu, the pills this time are different from before. They’re all refined from top-quality spiritual plants, which significantly enhances their quality and effectiveness. You know that if these pills were sold at Wanyao Pavilion, they’d fetch much more. You’ve always been generous to us, so we’re asking for only 80% of the market price. Yet, you still want to push for half that amount. That’s really taking advantage of us. If Si Miao doesn’t cry, I will. Please, at least add another 30%.”

Zhu Ruo held her fan to her forehead and replied, “It’s not that I don’t want to pay, but my expenses exceed my income.”

Gu Fuyou, sensing an underlying message, asked, “Is it the Xu Ling Sect again?”

The Xu Ling Sect ruled over Nanzhou, requiring all major cities to tribute a large amount of spiritual stones annually. However, many officials pocket some for themselves. To maintain the amount they tribute while also lining their own pockets, they levy additional fees from the people under them.

Looking at the brightly lit and lively pavilion, Zhu Ruo sighed, “Wantong City has been increasing its collection of spiritual stones year by year. My Yinxue Pavilion may seem prosperous, but at this rate, I don’t know how long we can hold on.”

Frowning, Gu Fuyou let out a disdainful snort after listening, then started telling Zhu Ruo about the Xiao siblings outside Xianluo. The more she spoke, the angrier she got. “The world of cultivation today is not what it used to be. The days of emperors and rulers are long gone. Initially, no one was a slave to anyone else. It was through unscrupulous means that the Four Immortal Sects gained their dominance over the regions. That would have been tolerable, but while the other three sects respect the virtuous and have a relatively clear moral climate, the Xu Ling Sect treats everyone like slaves, with their oppressive and tyrannical rules. They really think they’re royalty.”

Gu Fuyou scoffed, “But as the saying goes, ‘cold eyes watch the crab’—let’s see how long they can continue their tyranny!”

Zhu Ruo quickly covered Gu Fuyou’s mouth with her fan, cautioning, “You mustn’t speak recklessly! Ah Man, remember, words are like hooked threads, pulling out troubles from the start. With the tense situation between Xiaoyao City and the Xu Ling Sect, if someone with ulterior motives hears your words and makes a big deal out of them, who knows what trouble it will bring? Everyone below them is filled with resentment, yet they dare not speak out against the Xu Ling Sect because they’re untouchable.”

Gu Fuyou pursed her lips, muttering, “These days, you can’t even speak your mind.”

Zhu Ruo chuckled, “You’re not just anyone; you have to be careful with your words.”

Seeing the topic was sensitive, Gu Fuyou switched gears, “Sister Zhu, given these circumstances, just add one more level to the price of the pills. I’ll also gift you a bottle of Yiqi Dan for vitality and longevity.”

Zhu Ruo only smiled in response. Gu Fuyou, not one to give up, continued with a playful tone, “Sister Zhu, come on, be nice to me. If you don’t raise it at all, Si Miao and I would have made this trip for nothing.”

Zhu Ruo said, “Alright, alright, you have a sweet mouth. I’ll add one level, and consider this meal my treat.”

Delighted, Gu Fuyou said, “I’ll go fetch the Yiqi Dan for you, Sister Zhu.”

She went inside to get the spiritual pills from Si Miao. As she was about to leave, she felt something was amiss.

Glancing at Zhong Michu, she noticed her eyes were misty and her expression somewhat vacant.

Gu Fuyou took a couple of steps forward and, smelling the alcohol on her, exclaimed, “How did Senior Sister Zhong get drunk?”

She knew that Zhong Michu didn’t drink alcohol. This girl valued her appearance and demeanor. If she got drunk and acted improperly, she would be incredibly angry upon sobering up. That’s why Gu Fuyou had only persuaded her to drink half a cup and not let her drink too much.

But she had gotten drunk while she was briefly away.

The four women at the table giggled, “We just persuaded her to have two cups, and Miss Zhong couldn’t handle her liquor.”

“Oh no, this is bad,” Gu Fuyou worried. Not because Zhong Michu might blame her upon sobering up, but because if an elder discovered her state, they would hold Gu Fuyou accountable.

One lady chuckled, “Why is it so bad? Getting drunk is a common part of life.”

Another added with laughter, “Your senior sister is so different from what you described in your letter – she’s so well-behaved and gentle. She’s not cold at all, she’s quite endearing.” In their eyes, she seemed gentle, but they’d seen all sorts in their group, including sly foxes who couldn’t resist the lure of alcohol.

Gu Fuyou replied with a smile, “It looks like you all are drunk too.”

The banquet ended, and with Zhong Michu drunk, the party dispersed.

Gu Fuyou bid farewell to Zhu Ruo and, supporting Zhong Michu, mounted Si Miao’s three-legged crow. Along with Gu Huaiyou and Liu Guizhen, they headed back to Xuan Miao.

The group made their way to Gushen Peak, where no flying swords or magical beasts were allowed. Gu Fuyou had to help Zhong Michu off and walk up the mountain.

However, as her drunkenness escalated, Zhong Michu’s eyes were barely open.

Liu Guizhen offered, “I’ll carry Senior Sister up,”

“No, let me,” Gu intervened, “she doesn’t like being touched by others.”

Gu Fuyou carried Zhong Michu on her back and climbed the mountain. Zhong Michu was light, allowing Gu Fuyou to carry her with ease.

Si Miao and the other two followed closely. They were taking the front mountain path this time. The guard recognized Gu Fuyou and, seeing Zhong Michu behind her, didn’t stop them.

Gu Fuyou continued carrying Zhong Michu until they entered the courtyard. As they walked on the stone path, a lady emerged from a house. She wore a wooden hairpin and a purple dress, exuding grace and elegance. With a gentle voice, she asked, “Michu?”

Gu Fuyou didn’t recognize the woman, but she knew that besides Zhong Michu, there was another person here who had previously been in seclusion, and so she hadn’t met her. Gu Fuyou surmised that this must be her.

Neither Gu Fuyou, Gu Huaiyou, nor Si Miao recognized her. However, Liu Guizhen’s eyes lit up a touch. Clearing his throat, he stepped forward, giving her a bow and greeted, “Senior Sister Dongli.”

Dongli responded, “Junior Brother Liu.”

She stepped forward, inquiring, “What happened to Michu?”

“Senior Sister Zhong is drunk,” came the reply.

Gu Fuyou intended to carry Zhong Michu into the house, but Zhong Michu semi-awakened in her drunken stupor and mumbled, “Gu Fuyou, you smell so nice.”

“What?” Gu Fuyou didn’t hear her clearly. Before she could ask again, her voice took a sharp turn, escalating into a scream, “Ahhhh!!!”

While carrying Zhong Michu, Gu Fuyou’s attire had become somewhat disheveled, revealing the skin at the base of her neck.

Zhong Michu opened her mouth and bit down on that exposed area.

This spot was particularly sensitive, and Zhong wasn’t holding back, biting fiercely.

Gu Fuyou felt her sharp teeth piercing her skin. The pain made her go limp, and she collapsed on the ground, prompting the others to rush over to help. Annoyed and in pain, Gu Fuyou blurted out, “Senior Sister Zhong, are you part dog or what? Why are you biting me?”

Zhong Michu didn’t release her grip. Gu Fuyou felt a sharp, intense pain, as if Zhong Michu’s teeth had not only pierced her flesh but were gnawing on her very soul. The pain was unbearable, and she felt like crying out.

“Senior Sister Zhong, I apologize. Please, dear sister, let go. It hurts, hurts, hurts.”

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Previous: Chapter 18

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Otaku046
Otaku046
9 months ago

?!?!?!!! Ok I want to know what happens next!!!! I’m suddenly impatient lol

tar
tar
9 months ago

Gu Fuyou: “Now its my turn to carry you!”
Zhong Michu: “I wanna eat you”
🤣🤣🤣🤣 its funny to see their interaction, i’m glad zhong michu didn’t get angry at gu fuyou for summoning her

dadin
dadin
8 months ago

michu is bold doing that in front of others

dadin
dadin
8 months ago

xu ling sect needs to be gone

Khriss
Khriss
6 months ago

Ehehehe I was waiting for this hahaha :evil hamster smile:

Doom
Doom
5 months ago

😂

Hatimo
Hatimo
29 days ago

Zhong michu take revenge cause Fuyou bit her hand before lmao