Chapter 197: Entering the top eight
“Big brother Chu, how about we head down?”
Lin Mu Yu walked up to the stage and supported Chu Huai Sheng’s arm, shaking as they headed down. Chu Huai Sheng was absentminded. Although he had won, it was a hard win, but his bodily injuries did not match the injuries in his heart. He had accidentally crippled Zeng Fang’s sea of qi, causing him to have deep grudges with the God Marquis Palace and making it almost impossible for him to be with Zeng Xiang.
Chu Huai Sheng did not even dare look in Zeng Xiang’s direction.
Returning to the audience stand, Lin Mu Yu comforted him, “It isn’t your fault, you don’t need to feel guilty.”
“That’s right, that brat Zeng Fang tried sneak attacking you first, truly shameless!” Qin Lei said in a ready to fight manner, “This is the Ze Tian Palace, who does Zeng Yi Fan think he is. He actually tried to kill you, humph…..Good fight, that despicable Zeng Fang should have his sea of qi crippled. With his dragon tendon broken, let’s see how wild he acts!”
Feng Ji Xing understood Chu Huai Sheng the most. He said with a sigh, “Brother Chu, there is no need for despair. Things will eventually sort itself out, perhaps there will be joy after sorrow one day?”
“Let’s hope…..” Chu Huai Sheng had a ghastly expression as he sat down.
At this time, the emperor Qin Jin personally walked down to the audience stand and said in a comforting voice, “Minister Zeng, don’t feel too bad. Chu Huai Sheng accidentally injuring Zeng Fang is not his fault. This one will order the Spiritual Medicine Department to find all kinds of spiritual medicines in this world, they will definitely be able to cure Zeng Fang’s sea of qi.”
Zeng Yi Fan had a sorrowful expression as he cupped his hand and said, “Many thanks for your majesty’s worry, this old man will thank your majesty for your grace for Fang’er.”
Qin Jin nodded and said, “Someone, give Zeng Fang the title of Divine Might Earl and the fourth rank of East Guarding General, formally becoming the thirteenth earl of the empire. This title will last forever and will be passed down. He will also be given a magnificent manner outside Orchid Goose City and two hundred thousand gold coins.”
“Many thanks for your majesty’s grace…..” Zeng Yi Fan bowed with cupped hands, but there was still a look of incomparable sorrow in his eyes as he said, “Someone, bring the young marquis to the Spiritual Medicine Department.”
A group of Divine Battalion soldiers immediately took Zeng Fang away to be treated. Zeng Yi Fan bowed to the emperor again before hurrying off.
The horse carriage passed through Tong Tian Street. Zeng Yi Fan was beside Zeng Fang with a pale look on his face. To the side, the Divine Battalion’s thousand man commander Sikong Nan had a look of hatred as he said, “Chu Huai Sheng using this opportunity to destroy the young marquis’ sea of qi, this was clearly intentional. Damn, the emperor easily granted the young marquis that title, the manner, and money, but he gave the young marquis such small amount of military authority. Truly going too far! Marquis, this kind of great shame, how can our God Marquis Palace accept this?”
“What do you want to do?”
There was a glow in Zeng Yi Fan’s eyes as he said, “Speak?”
“How about…..” Sikong Nan cupped his hands and said, “How about we immediately gather the Divine Battalion and send a message to the commanders in the Tian Shu Province, Cang Nan Province, and the Di Xing Province, having them attack the royal capital. The soldiers the commanders have under them is close to two hundred thousand and the royal army only have a trivial thirty thousand people in the capital. Even if the imperial guards and the city guards are added in, it’s less than fifty thousand people. We can definitely break the city in half a month and then……”
Sikong Nan became more excited when he spoke, but when Zeng Yi Fan’s cold eyes fell onto him, he trembled and said, “Marquis, I…..Did I say something wrong?”
Zeng Yi Fan angrily said, “Sikong Nan, remember this for me. I, Zeng Yi Fan was given the title of the God Marquis personally by his majesty Qin Jin and I, Zeng Yi Fan will always be the Great Qin Empire’s God Marquis. Whoever wants to displace his majesty has to step over my, Zeng Yi Fan’s corpse. From this day forth, if I hear you making this kind of rebellious statement again, don’t blame me for escorting you to the royal city and handing you to the military police’s Xiang Yu to take care off.”
Sikong Nan shivered and said, “I won’t dare again!”
Zeng Yi Fan looked down at Zeng Fang who had a knit brows before looking up at the sky. He looked pensive as he gave a sigh, as if he had suddenly aged quite a bit.
On the martial stage, the Swordsmen Meet continued. When it was noon, they reached the final top twelve and the final winner would be one of these twelve people.
The remaining competition would be held in the afternoon and the emperor would personally host the top twelve in the Ze Tian Palace at noon.
When it was high noon, golden plates were brought out with exquisite dishes. Many of these dishes were tributes from the elven provinces. For example, the fruits from the Ling Nan Province, the bear claws from the Ling Dong Province, the wild Cloud Deer meat from the Tong Tian Province, the swan from the Yun Zhong Province, the Seven Core Otter from the Qi Hai Province, and etc. When the musicians began to play their instruments, it signalled the beginning of the banquet.
The palace maids and server staff were kneeling on the side waiting to serve and even special people came out to pour the wine.
Lin Mu Yu was sitting between Feng Ji Xing and Chu Huai Seng, being very silent. He was not use to this situation because if this situation was described by words, it would be a “life of luxury”. The royal family lived too luxuriously and even if Lin Mu Yu was not a guardian of the world, he still felt a bit guilty eating this.
Qin Jin raised his silver cup and said with a smile, “This one wishes to lead everyone in a toast. This one hopes that all the participants in this afternoon’s Swordsmen Meet can have a good placing, come!”
The emperor drank a full cup, so how could Lin Mu Yu and the others be negligent. They all drank a full cup.
“Xiao Yin?” Qin Jin looked at his precious daughter with hinting eyes.
Qin Yin immediately stood up and raised a cup. She said with a smile, “Xiao Yin wishes to drink a cup with the contestants, hoping that you can obtain good results!”
She was the empire’s successor and the twelve people would all be respected talents of the empire in the future, that is why Qin Jin had his daughter offer them a toast. Qin Jin was using this chance to train his daughter in courtly manners, taking care of everything.
After this, Qin Yin offered toasts one by one, making everyone feel flattered. Only when Qin Yin arrived in front of Lin Mu Yu, she revealed a bad smile, “Big brother Ah Yu, you should drink less……”
Lin Mu Yu looked at her red face and said, “You’re the one who should drink less. Look at you, you’re already a bit drunk.”
Qin Yin giggled. Her red cheeks were like the sunset glow, being very beautiful. She said with a smile, “I’m fine. You’re the one who can’t get drunk, otherwise you might lose the Swordsmen Meet this afternoon.”
“Relax, I will use all my strength.” Lin Mu Yu revealed a faint smile.
“Un, Xiao Yin wishes that big brother Ah Yu will take first place!” Qin Yin drank another full cup of wine and said with a smile, “Come, big brother Ah Yu, will you drink a cup with Xiao Yin?”
“Un.” Lin Mu Yu drank another cup.
This caused Yuwen Lian and the juniors of the noble families to be unhappy. Qin Yin had given them a round of toasts while she only drank an extra cup for Lin Mu Yu, even sitting and talking with him. This kind of love filled them with jealousy, but they couldn’t say anything since everyone knew Lin Mu Yu was the emperor’s adopted son, so it was normal for him to be this close to Qin Yin.
In the afternoon, Qin Yin was a bit drunk as she sat down in the stands with a red face. She looked at the stage in the distance, waiting for the upcoming competitions.
There were only twelve people left and each one of them was a fierce tiger.
But when they were grouped, it was a bit strange. The twelve people were placed in two groups like there were sixteen of them and they would decide the top eight, which meant that four people would draw byes. The groupings were quickly set, with Lin Mu Yu, Chu Huai Sheng, and Feng Ji Xing being lucky enough to draw byes. Feng Ji Xing was filled with happiness, he didn’t need to fight to reach the top eight!
Lin Mu Yu was also secretly happy, it was best not to go up and preserve his strength. He had already spent quite a bit of battle qi in the morning and the enemies following were all experts, so he had to use all his strength.
The four matches were quickly finished, with the Qin brothers smoothly winning. Other than that, Yuwen Lian, Lin Chang Qing, and Murong Zhou reached the top eight. There were eight names left on the golden board being, Feng Ji Xing, Chu Huai Sheng, Qin Lei, Qin Yan, Lin Mu Yu, Yuwen Lian, Lin Chang Qing, and Murong Zhou. Lin Chang Qing and Murong Zhou were both generals from the provinces, being fourth rank generals. They joined the army when they were young and have been refined after all these years, so they had the qualification to participate in the Swordsmen Meet.
Very soon, the top eight matches were decided.
Feng Ji Xing versus Lin Chang Qing.
Yuwen Lian versus Qin Lei.
Lin Mu Yu versus Qin Yan.
Murong Zhou versus Chu Huai Sheng.
“I was actually matched with big brother Lin Mu Yu……”
Qin Yan revealed a depressed look and said, “How could I be his match…..Ai, I thought I could meet Lin Chang Qing or Yuwen Lian, at least reaching the top four!”
Qin Lei said with a smile, “Ah Yan, reaching the top eight isn’t easy. After all, you are only eighteen and everyone here is older than you. If you train for another seven-eight years, which one of us could be your match?”
Qin Yan was happy once again, “Un, big brother is very right!”
This brat, he really didn’t know modesty at all.
The first match, Feng Ji Xing against Lin Chang Qing. The two of them were both experts with blades and were both commanders, fighting in the army for many years, so they had killing blade arts. However, Feng Ji Xing’s blade art was very overbearing and his cultivation was higher than Lin Chang Qing’s, so after a few rounds, Lin Chang Qing admitted his defeat.
In the second match, Yuwen Lian fought Qin Lei. The Country Protecting General Yuwen Xie’s son versus the Peaceful Step King’s son. However with the disparity in strength, in less than ten rounds, Yuwen Lian was injured and admitted defeat. Qin Lei’s seventh layer God Binding Lock was just too strong, with Yuwen Lian being on the defense from the beginning and being on defense when he lost.
The third match, Lin Mu Yu versus Qin Yan.
Although they were enemies, they had quite a good relation. Lin Mu Yu raised his Dragon Spirit Sword and Qin Yan raised his Fire Snake Spear. The two of them walked onto the stage side by side and immediately caused the crowd to break out in cheers. Lin Mu Yu was the emperor’s adopted son, so there were many young girls “observing” him. In the audience stands, there were several noble girls waving their arms and shouting, “Sir Lin Mu Yu, do your best!”
Tang Xiao Xi slammed a teacup onto the table and revealed a dissatisfied look. There was a look of jealousy in her eyes as she said, “Humph, what do these girls think Mu Mu is, actually cheering for him. I’m so angry…..”
Qin Yin laughed, “Xiao Xi is really petty…..”
Tang Xiao Xi pursed her lips, but was not willing to admit she was petty. Her twin peaks angrily fluctuated as she said, “Xiao Yin is also bullying me, could it be you’re happy those girls are cheering for Mu Mu?!”
Qin Yin’s beautiful eyes were as smooth as water. She shook her head with a smile and said, “No, I’m very happy they are cheering for big brother Ah Yu. However, when I ascend to the throne, I will reduce their fathers’ salary by 30%.”
Tang Xiao Xi had a look of respect, “You truly are Xiao Yin…..”