Xiao Yuan was stunned and deep in thought when he heard Xiao Du ask him, “Does Young Sect Master Shen know this Liang Ci?”
Xiao Yuan thought, I was going to ask you if you knew him, don’t think I didn’t see the look on your face just now. “I don’t know. But the dead deserve respect, so let’s put the coffin back in place and fill in the grave.”
Xiao Du said, “Leave it to me here, you can accompany your shimei.”
Xiao Yuan hesitated for a moment, couldn’t find a reason to refuse and said, “Okay.”
Xiao Du looked down at the remains in the coffin; his index finger hooked a little, and a bone of the corpse’s index finger flew up from below. Xiao Du firmly grasped it in his hand.
Xiao Yuan carried Cai Xunnian back to Xiyuan Garden. Cai Xunnian was still unconscious and Chang Lan checked her carefully to make sure she had no wounds, only a few scratches on her palms.
“When we found her, her hands were dirty and her fingertips were covered with dust. We think she had dug the tomb.“ Chang Lan couldn’t understand it, “But why did she do this?”
Xiao Yuan kept thinking about the words on the tombstone and asked, “Baihua Palace only accepts female disciples. How can there be a man’s grave in the Burial Garden?”
Chang Lan said, “When I was eight years old, I joined Baihua Palace. At that time, this tomb was already in the Burial Garden. There are thousands of tombs in the Burial Garden, and there is only one tomb of a man, which is the ‘Tomb of Liang Ci’.”
“So who was this Liang Ci? Who was his wife surnamed Zhong?”
Chang Lan shook her head and said, “”I had also asked my master out of curiosity, but not only did she avoid answering, she also told me not to mention the matter again.”
Xiao Yuan was deep in thought. To make the entire Baihua Palace silent, this couple was obviously not simple. Perhaps when Cai Xunnian woke up, he would be able to get some useful information from her.
Xiao Yuan was guarding Cai Xunnian in her room. It didn’t take long for Cai Xunnian to wake up. Even before her eyes were fully opened, the first thing she did was to call out “Shixiong”.
Xiao Yuan sat at the bedside and as soon as he said the word “Cai”, Cai Xunnian plunged into his arms. “Shixiong, I missed you so much, Shixiong…”
Xiao Yuan hurriedly raised his hands to demonstrate his innocence. The only time he had ever held a girl’s waist in his life was when he’d participated in a play in the entertainment district. With Cai Xunnian hugging him like this, he was afraid Shen Fugui would kill him. “Miss Cai, please listen to me…”
Cai Xunnian raised his head abruptly and stared at him, “What did you call me?”
“You used to call me little shimei and now you call me Miss Cai – you’ve really changed your mind, you pig’s trotter!” Cai Xunnian raised her hand angrily, trying to slap him, but unexpectedly her wrist was caught. She struggled and said, “Let go!”
Xiao Yuan didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry. In order to avoid being beaten, he cast a body-binding spell on Cai Xunnian and said, “Calm down, I am not your Shixiong.”
Cai Xunnian’s eyes were red with grievances, and she said with tears: “You put a spell on me, you actually put a spell on me!”
Xiao Yuan was afraid of girls and children crying most of all. After thinking for a while, he changed back to An Mu’s face in front of Cai Xunnian. Cai Xunnian was stunned and Xiao Yuan took the opportunity to tell her the ins and outs of the matter.
“Your Shixiong had never thought of going on a blind date with others. He was afraid that you would be angry and dare not even come to Baihua Palace.” Xiao Yuan looked touched, “His love for you makes the sun and the moon jealous. If someone did that much for me, believe it or not, I would immediately give my heart to him.”
Cai Xunnian’s tears turned into laughter. Wiping away her tears, she said, “Shixiong is so hateful, why didn’t he say so earlier?”
Xiao Yuan thought, you had to give him a chance at the least. Running so fast, he couldn’t say it in time even if he wanted to.
“Where is Shixiong now?”
“He is still staying in Hongxiu Prefecture to inquire about you.” Xiao Yuan said, “Let’s take a day off and go out of the palace to meet him tomorrow. But before that, we need to clear things up first. What did you do in the past few days when you disappeared?”
Cai Xunnian tugged at the quilt with a blank expression, “I, I don’t know.”
She heard in Xuanle Sect that the sect master selected one of the disciples from Baihua Palace to become Shen Fugui’s Dao companion, so she angrily took Shen Fugui’s invitation and left. She didn’t run around and went directly to Baihua Palace, trying to find out which disciple the sect master liked, and waited for her Shixiong to come and coax her. One day after breakfast, she went out of Xiyuan Garden by herself, wandering aimlessly, and after that she didn’t remember anything.
“You said that I was missing for a few days, but I have no impression of it at all.” Cai Xunnian said, “For me it felt like I was enjoying flowers one moment and the next moment I was lying on this bed.”
“Don’t you remember that you were digging someone’s grave?”
Cai Xunnian’s face darkened, “Do I look like a grave digger?! What’s more, I don’t know Liang Ci at all.”
Cai Xunnian had no memory of the period during her disappearance, which seemed like she was hit by a soul-capture technique. All her three spiritual and six physical souls were in the hands of someone else and her words and deeds were controlled by the person who casted the spell. Xiao Yuan saw Li Xianting use the soul-capture technique by chance when he was a teenager. He said to his Shizun that he wanted to learn it. Li Xianting didn’t agree. He just touched his head gently and said that Ah Yu’s appearance could already capture a soul and there was no need to learn any more soul-capture skills.
Xiao Yuan knew that even if he kept asking Cai Xunnian, he wouldn’t find out anything, so he said, “You just rest, I’ll go first.”
Cai Xunnian nodded and asked, “By the way, what’s your name?”
Xiao Yuan smiled and said, “An Mu.”
The next day, Xiao Yuan took Cai Xunnian with him to bid farewell to Lu Liluan.
After a night of recuperation, Cai Xunnian’s small face was refreshed and looked pretty. Wearing the attire of Xuanle Sect, she bowed to Lu Liluan and the others in a dignified manner. “In the past few days, Baihua Palace has been working hard to find me. I am unable to repay the favour, so I ask the Palace Master and all these Jiejies to accept my bow of respect.”
Lu Liluan smiled: “Miss Cai doesn’t need to be so polite. Since you went missing in Baihua Palace, Baihua Palace was naturally responsible. However, you really don’t remember what happened during your disappearance?”
Cai Xunnian shook her head and said, “Shixiong said that I might have been hit by a soul-capture technique.”
Lu Liluan smiled slightly, “It is indeed possible.”
Xiao Yuan said, “Palace Master Lu, the person who captured my Shimei’s soul must have come prepared and led us to the Burial Garden to discover the tomb of Liang Ci. Dare to ask the Palace Master who Liang Ci is and how, being a man, could he be buried in the burial place of Baihua Palace?”
The smile on Lu Liluan’s face faded and she said slowly: “This is a matter of my Baihua Palace.”
“But this matter involves my shimei. If we don’t find out who is behind the scene, Xuanle Sect won’t give up.” Xiao Yuan paused, and then said, “Strange things happened frequently during the flower viewing party. First, Lu Yueyao of Yunjian Pavilion was severely poisoned, and then my shimei disappeared and her soul was captured. Doesn’t Palace Master Lu want to find out what’s happening?”
Lu Liluan said indifferently: “Naturally, I have to check. You go back to Xuanle Sect first, and Baihua Palace will give you an explanation.”
Xiao Yuan was quite reluctant: “I am asking Palace Master Lu to do my Jiejie a favour…”
Lu Liluan got up and said, “Chang Lan, see them off.”
Xiao Yuan: “…”
Cai Xunnian whispered, “Master An, what should we do now?”
Xiao Yuan smiled in relief, “”What can we do, let’s go back to our own homes.”
If they didn’t want to talk about it, so be it. Anyway, he had already completed the task Shen Fugui had entrusted him with, and it was time to go back to Tong’an County to relax. As for other things, let’s leave them to the so-called three major sects, it was not his business to worry about it.
It’s just… Xiao Yuan once again remembered the words on the tombstone, ‘the tomb of Liang Ci, mourned by his wife surnamed Zhong’, and his chest felt inexplicably blocked.
On this trip to Baihua Palace, Xiao Yuan didn’t get a ruthless hua but accidentally harvested a red lotus. According to Gu Louyin, a red lotus could absorb the brilliance of the sun and the moon and if one kept it nearby, it helped to repair one’s spiritual roots and veins. Xiao Yuan put the red lotus in his room and indeed felt that the turbid qi in his body turned pure, his spiritual energy soothed, and he was able to eat an extra bowl of rice at each meal, so it was not a bad trip.
Xiao Yuan was packing up in his room, putting the things he wanted to take away on the table one by one – the red lotus, the silver he earned from Gu Louyin and Shen Fugui and the nine-tone snail that carried half of Xiao Du’s life.
There was a soft knock on the door; the visitor was the sword cultivator who had befriended Xiao Yuan in the past few days. When he learned that he was going back to Xuanle Sect, he came to see him off.
“There is still one day left for the flower viewing party, why is Brother Shen leaving?”
Xiao Yuan said, “My shimei was found and I watched the flowers for six days, so it’s almost time to go.”
“Well,” the sword cultivator said, “Brother Shen must come to my Tianhe Sect for a few days some time and we can have a talk about Yunjian Pavilion together.”
Xiao Yuan smiled: “Okay, okay.”
The sword cultivator said calmly, “By the way, speaking of Yunjian Pavilion, have you heard of that incident?”
“Gu Louyin, the young master of Yunjian Pavilion, has become demonized!”
Xiao Yuan: “…huh?”
“I heard that after he returned to Yunjian Pavilion, he saw the remains of his dead wife. He wanted to walk away with the pile of bones, but the people of Yunjian Pavilion had been waiting for the return of their young master for two years, how could they easily let him leave.”
Xiao Yuan heard himself ask, “Then what?”
“Then Gu Louyin became demonized. He slaughtered indiscriminately in Yunjian Pavilion, and at the price of his life expectancy, his cultivation exploded so even the elders of Yunjian Pavilion were no match for him. He seriously injured several fellow disciples and ruined the arm of one of the masters. In the end, the Master of Yunjian Pavilion, who had been in retreat, stepped in and unexpectedly let him kill a bloody path and flee with serious injuries. His whereabouts are still unknown.”
Xiao Yuan said in surprise: “But he doesn’t have Shuang Leng, how could he fight?”
The sword cultivator shrugged: “I don’t know that.”
Xiao Yuan thought for a moment, then asked, “What about Mu Yingyang who left with him? Do you have any news about him?”
The sword cultivator said: “I just heard what others said, how can I know so much detail? Doesn’t Xuanle Sect always have a good relationship with Yunjian Pavilion? Brother Shen could go to Yunjian Pavilion to inquire in person, so you will know everything.”
Xiao Yuan said calmly: “Yunjian Pavilion takes face very seriously. If Gu Louyin is really crazy…”
“No matter what, he is also the only son of Pavilion Master Gu, Yunjian Pavilion can’t kill him.”
Xiao Yuan sighed: “Who knows.”
Gu Louyin found out about the corpse when he was in Baihua Palace. Although his mood collapsed at that time, he showed no signs of becoming demonized. There was no reason why he would react so extremely when he saw the remains. There must be something else behind it.
Also, what did Mu Yingyang do in the midst of this mess?
After sending the sword cultivator away, Xiao Yuan sat at the table for a while and then continued to pack his bags. He didn’t know when exactly but the red lotus dropped a petal that, coincidentally, covered the nine-tone snail.
Xiao Yuan picked up the petal and suddenly his expression changed.
Red lotus could store spiritual power; if Xiao Du was looking for him during this time, then……
There was another knock, and Xiao Yuan stared at the door, holding his breath.