Chapter 313 Surprises in a Row
In the near future, Wang Shiyu should be facing no danger at all.
Li Mu could totally postpone the trip to the Northern Song to look for his pretty deskmate until he became a real Sage.
But in truth, the short-tempered Devil Li could not wait that long.
Only those who had experienced it themselves could feel the joy of running into some old friends at an alien place.
Not to mention that Wang Shiyu was a girl he once had a crush on.
Afterward, Li Mu posed more questions about Countess Huanzhu.
The more the envoy told Li Mu about Countess Huanzhu, the more certain he was of her being exactly Wang Shiyu.
Because, judging by the scores of anecdotes of Countess Huanzhu Zhao Ji disclosed to him, though most people perhaps did not get the point of her pranks, Li Mu could see a girl who strayed to that alien planet, plagued by loneliness and boredom.
Given that the news on the battle with Huang Shengyi, the Fire Devil, and the famous poems like the Beauty Poem and When Would the Full Moon Appear had spread to the Northern Song and caused Li Mu to rise to fame, Wang Shiyu must have heard those poems and the name Li Mu. Based on those pieces of information, she certainly had guessed that he was the Li Mu she knew on Earth.
“I need to see Countess Huanzhu. Could she travel to Taibai Mountain in the Wester Qin?” Li Mu blurted out at last.
Considering that he could not leave Taibai County, his only option was to ask Wang Shiyu to go to him instead.
By that time, Zhao Ji’s surprise and curiosity had reached the bursting point.
“By principle, Your Honor is permitted to meet Countess Huanzhu, as long as Her Highness is willing to come…” Zhao Ji deliberated it for a moment and gave Li Mu a fairly positive answer. But truthfully, he was already pondering over how he should report it to Lord Union.
Because he took it as the perfect opportunity for Lord Union and Li Mu to enter into a cooperative relationship.
Li Mu nodded and said, “Then, please hurry back and request Her Highness’s instructions on this.”
He could not wait for the reply.
“What about the issues our Lord Union inquires…” asked Zhao Ji tactfully.
Li Mu said, “How is the status of Lord Union in the Northern Song?”
At that, Zhao Ji perked up and said, “Lord Union is one of the three sons that His Majesty favors most. He commands one-third of the imperial army and has a large say in the imperial court…”
As he spoke of that, Li Mu cut him off. “Well then, you go back and tell Lord Union that as long as he can send Countess Huanzhu to my Taibai County, I will accept whatever terms he offers me.”
Hearing that, Zhao Ji brightened up.
“Here you go. The only thing that worries me is the Sage-to-be’s possible refusal to tell me what his catch is.”
“As he put his requirement on the table, I got some wriggle room.”
“Plus, that requirement he made is not at all out of line.”
“Yes, I got it.” Zhao Ji answered with a bow.
On second thought, Li Mu added, “Not only Lord Union can you inform of the catch. Let my words out. Anyone who brings Countess Huanzhu to Taibai County can negotiate with me, provided that by that time you come along with them as the envoy, too. Do you understand what I’m saying?”
Zhao Ji was nonplussed at that remark. But soon he came around and felt an outburst of joy.
The meaning of the Sage-to-be’s remark was very clear—if anyone in the Northern Song hopes to negotiate with him, aside from taking Countess Huanzhu to him, he or she should meet another requirement, which was to hire Zhao Ji as the envoy. That meant Zhao Ji would be very popular among the politicians.
“Is the Sage-to-be throwing me a carrot now?”
“Thank you so much, Your Honor.” He bowed respectfully.
Being worldly-wise was an art. Zhao Ji had been told that Li Mu, the Sage-to-be, was unbridled, unreasonable, and could kill people ruthlessly as if mowing the lawn. But from what he had witnessed that day, the rumor was fallacious. After all, when a martial arts practitioner reached the Sage Realm, how could he or she still be barbaric?
Although Zhao Ji did not intend to betray Lord Union, since at the moment he was kind of connected to Li Mu, the Sage-to-be, he could imagine how his status would rise sharply; he would enjoy a higher standing in Lord Union’s league when he went back to the Northern Song.
After that, Qing Feng, the little attendant, led the envoy of the Northern Song out of the room.
Li Mu gradually calmed down from the previous excitement.
More issues crowded into his head.
Wang Shiyu did not write him a long letter but just the Thoughts in a Quiet Night. She was definitely sounding him out with that poem. But that was a little weird. Normally she ought to send him a long letter to elaborate on all the issues, shouldn’t she? Yet, she adopted a more tactful way… so it seemed that she was guarding against something.
“What is she guarding against then?”
Li Mu’s thoughts ran wild. His mind soon dwelled on the underground chamber at that scoundrel’s mansion in Peace County, a host of bizarre objects he found there, and a secret organization with all members in black as well as the space shuttle worship…
For some reason, Li Mu felt there was a pair of invisible hands pulling strings behind the scene to drag certain people into troubled waters.
On the day of the fierce fight in Chang’an City, a mysterious expert to Li Gang’s side had launched a jet of dark blue light that later killed the second prince. Li Mu had long since had the feeling that the light was not generated through some martial Cultivation Method but a certain high-tech weapon.
Zhao Ji, the envoy of the Northern Song, took off right away that night.
No one knew what Li Mu had discussed with him. But as they saw the envoy leave in haste, they speculated the result of the meeting was not satisfying.
Because if the meeting with the Sage-to-be had gone well, it certainly would not end so early but would stretch to days so as to cover issues in all aspects.
Those who kept an eye on their meeting were relieved by seeing that outcome.
The next day, Dong Rui, the messenger of the crown prince went to visit Li Mu again, accompanied by Xu Sheng, the Sky-cracking Punch.
Li Mu had no aversion to Dong Rui, so he sent a servant to lead him in at once.
When Dong Rui stepped into the hall, he expressed his deep gratitude to Li Mu with a burst of laughter.
Because the ‘law of nature’ Li Mu told him helped him break the bottleneck he had been stuck in for a long time and reached the fifth-step Celestial Being Realm. At the moment, he had begun to practice the last qi called Heart qi of the five Taoist qi.
“A casual word of the Taibai master enlightens the baffled,” Dong Rui sighed, “Lately, I’ve put political affairs aside. I hope the Taibai master could open our eyes further in the field of martial arts.”
Xu Sheng also could not understand Li Mu’s behavior at the moment.
In light of the fight against the second prince, he reckoned Li Mu only gained victory with his square seal. But at present, he could tell Li Mu’s aura and cultivation were profound as Zongshi Master who was able to establish a sect.
“You two seniors are being too modest… I dare not object your requests, haha.”
Li Mu told them with a beaming smile.
In the entire morning, the three of them stayed in the study to exchange notes on martial arts.
Dong Rui and Xu Sheng were quite decent men. Their minds were relatively pure. As they had focused on martial arts for around seven decades and their attainment on the basics was way better than Li Mu’s, they were familiar with all kinds of problems in martial arts practice. Whatever questions Li Mu posed, the two could immediately put a finger on the key point and made LI Mu feel suddenly enlightened and refreshed.
Compared with them, Li Mu was short of the martial arts basics, common knowledge, and experience, but he had grasped the magic arts. Those the legendary old faker taught him were way more ahead of the martial arts in that world. Thus, any remark he made that quoted the old faker might be a head-on blow to Dong Rui and Xu Sheng.
Due to their shared interest in martial arts, the three hit it off at once. They talked about all sorts of topics and learned loads from each other. Hours flew by as they had the meeting.
Last time Li Mu discussed martial arts with an excellent expert in that world, he was still in the cave of the Nine-dragons Fall with his sworn brother, Guo Yuqing.
In the afternoon, the little attendant came in again.
“Your Honor, Yu Wenhui, the envoy of the Southern Chu hopes to visit you,”
Qing Feng reported.
Li Mu motioned to the outside and snapped, “Fat chance. Tell him to move his ass off my place.”
He just hated being interrupted.
Right then, he was engrossed in the martial arts forum and largely enjoying himself.
The little attendant added, “The envoy refuses to take a no and insists to see you. Also, he asked me to say three names to you. He said when you hear the three names you will let him in.”
That aroused Li Mu’s interest. He asked, “Which three names?”
The little attendant recited, “Emperor Wu of Han, Li Yannian, and Su Shi.”
“What?” Li Mu jumped to his feet, astonishment etched into his face. Then, he asked, “Are you sure you heard that right? He truly said the three names?”
Qing Feng answered, “Yes, he did.”
Li Mu’s eyes glinted, his brows knitted.
Emperor Wu of Han and Li Yannian were connected to the old story Li Mu copied when composing the Beauty Poem, while Su Shi was the actual author of the “When Will the Moon Appear”… In theory, people on that planet were not supposed to know of those names.
But how could the envoy of the Southern Chu know about the three historical figures and their stories?
The Thoughts in a Quiet Night delivered by the Northern Song envoy was already quite a shock for him. Yet, the envoy also provided him some clues that led to Wang Shiyu, allowing the whole thing to make sense. However, the Southern Chu envoy had just given him the names of three Earth dwellers… That was really odd.
“Considering that the Taibai master has other guests to entertain, we might as well pick another day to continue our martial arts conference,” Dong Rui rose to his feet and suggested with a salute.
Xu Sheng echoed, “Exactly. We’ve gained a lot from today’s meeting. We’d better go back to digest and verify all the new knowledge we learned. So, Taibai Master, we’ll take our departure.”
With that, the two Celestial Beings headed out of the mansion.
“Please let the Southern Chu envoy in,” Li Mu said from a high chair in the middle of the hall.
In a moment, a slightly short and slim young man came in on the heels of the little attendant. He was about twenty-three or twenty-four, had tanned skin but very attractive facial features. His skin looked as if it were made of raw iron, and his muscles were strong and firm. The clothes he was wearing were the garish ones typical in the water-abundant southern areas. Given his internal qi was well-restrained within, he was probably a first-step Celestial Being, who could be said to be a whiz in his town.
“I pay my tributes to the Sage-to-be.” The envoy looked very haughty. When he saw Li Mu, he merely cupped his hands unceremoniously and went on, “I am Yu Wenhui, a subordinate of Lord Qu in the Southern Chu.”
Li Mu scrutinized the young man sharply.
“Just tell me, how did you know about Emperor Wu of Han, Li Yannian, and Su Shi?” Disliking beating around the bush, Li Mu went straight to the point.
Yu Wenhui smiled, shot a look at Qing Feng standing to his side, but did not say a word.
“Just spill it out. Qing Feng is my closest colleague,” Li Mu urged.
“Such being the case, I shall just get down to brass tacks. I did not know the three names until Lord Qu asked me to transfer the message to the Sage-to-be. His Highness also said he is a fellow traveler of Your Honor.”
“Fellow traveler?” Li Mu scowled. “What does he mean?”
Yu Wenhui smiled and replied, “His Highness said he is from the same place as Your Honor is. He has been waiting for his townsmen for years. When he heard about Beauty Poem and Where Will the Moon Appear, he knew the man he was looking forward to had finally arrived.”
Li Mu’s eyes brightened at that remark.
“He is from the same place as I am?”
“Did that Lord Qu also come from Earth?”
“How can that be?”