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Home > The Sage Who Transcended Samsara

171 "The Man on the Way"

 After entering the town and checking in a courtier hostel, Lu Guan and the others were waiting for the Emperor's summons. Meng Qi and Ruan Yushu went to the main street together on the excuse of visiting friends.

Recalling his fighting with Evil Prince, Meng Qi felt self-satisfied and ready to practice his Heaven Blade. Suddenly, he heard Ruan Yushu's careless words, "Was it a move of Ananda Oath-breaking Bladesmanship?"

"Yes." Meng Qi didn't conceal the fact and wanted to know the appraisal of his bladesmanship from the immediate descendants of the Ruan family of Langya.

Looking steadily forward, Ruan Yushu threaded the main street through the crowd, composedly said, "Invincible! Thunder Blade Furious Monk really deserves the reputation."

"Ho-Ho," Meng Qi answered. How hard it is to correct others' bias! Fortunately, Golden Bell Shield wasn't used before; otherwise, Reckless Monk would deserve the reputation as well.

The streets of the capital were arranged in a crisscross, chessboard-shaped pattern. Because Courier Hostel was far away from Xiaoxiang Restaurant, Meng Qi and Ruan Yushu spent a half hour to reach the warden-market and saw a tavern with huge red lanterns hanged high.

While considering how to inquire about Luo Shengyi and the others, he heard the loud voice of Luo Shengyi. "Xiao Meng has been well-known in the capital. As the saying goes, he who is famous always counts."

He and Ge Huai'en stood by the stairs of the tavern seemingly like hotel greeters who were especially waiting there.

"You?" Meng Qi was a little confused.

Luo Shengyi smiled, "There are many people. Come inside first."

Meng Qi and Ruan Yushu nodded and then passed through a lobby and across a small bridge over a flowing stream after Luo Shengyi and Ge Huai'en toward a serene courtyard at the back of the tavern.

"Upon your arrival, I had received a clue from the Dominator of Samsara in Six Realms," Luo Shengyi explained after closing the door and checking around.

Meng Qi felt suddenly enlightened that task collaboration should be treated as such.

Just then, the Dominator of Samsara in Six Realms indifferently exclaimed again, "Main Task II has been initiated to help Lu Guan regain the Emperor's trust and receive plenty of recognition. If you succeed, you will get a reward of 400 Karma points. Contrarily, the corresponding quantity will be taken out."

"To regain the Emperor's trust..." Meng Qi slightly frowned, looking at Luo Shengyi, "Brother Luo, your Main Task I might be relevant to this?"

Luo Shengyi nodded slightly, pointing to the food and drink on the table, "Let's talk while eating."

Meng Qi didn't shun Luo Shengyi and Ge Huai'en at all. He carefully checked the food and drink and began to eat after Ruan Yushu's foretaste.

"West Invaders won victory after victory, encamping at the upper reaches of the Pei River. They sent messagers to negotiate with strict conditions. Thus, the Emperor suffered a stroke and fell into a coma," Luo Shengyi placidly said. "Our Main Task I is to get trust from some prince and temporarily stop negotiation. It now appears that if we help the prince, who we will support to assume the throne, Main Task II will be smoothly completed."

Meng Qi thoughtfully nodded, "Which prince do you support?"

"This is indeed the solution."

"The Third Prince. Only he is willing to accept us," Luo Shengyi calmly said as if it was an unimportant thing.

Being self-restrained, Ge Huai'en quietly sat there without interruption. Ruan Yushu focused on eating and scarfed down the food in a neat way. Astonished, Luo Shengyi became speechless.

"How about the power of the Third Prince?" Meng Qi was aware that the Third Prince's strength was weakest; otherwise, he wouldn't accept Luo Shengyi and the others of dubious origin.

Luo Shengyi played with a wine glass, "He is neither strong nor weak. Besides Moon-bathing Taoist of the Imperceptible Realm, there are some others in the same realm supporting him. But I don't know who these people are."

"How about his opponents?" Meng Qi could resist food at a crucial time by comparison with the one beside.

Luo Shengyi put down his wine glass. "Being legitimate, Crown Prince is supported by Royal Advisor, Ruyi Monk, and many courtiers. As a disciple of Sword Emperor, the Fourth Prince is very popular, and a lot of courtiers are closely linked to him. Being knowledgeable and adept in archery and horsemanship, the Seventh Prince is most trusted by the Emperor. However, he has no foundation in Jianghu. For the sake of the Emperor, the Left Prime Minister of the Political Affairs Hall System favored him. Now the Emperor falls into a coma of uncertainty and is deliberately alienated from him."

"But now, he seems to realize his shortcomings and begins to contact with courtiers and masters. I doubt that the Devil Empress has secretly arrived in the capital and settled in the palace of the Seventh Prince."

Meng Qi muttered, "How influential are masters in this world on the political situation?"

"I ever fought once with the suspected Devil Empress ending with narrowly escape. Except for the motivation of change of astronomical phenomena, her strength and realm have already been close to Half-step Exterior Scenery. If there was no master in the imperial city or court, such a person could completely control the political situation by assassinating rebels." Luo Shengyi sighed. Obviously, he was still scared after temporarily fighting with the suspected Devil Empress.

He continued, "However, aristocratic family and the Confucian school flourish here. The Six Classical Arts (rites, music, archery, riding, writing, and arithmetic) aren't neglected. Thus, for those who are called learned scholars, such as, the Right Prime Minister Wang Derang, who is called as 'Reincarnation Star King', and the Royal Advisor Immortal Changle, who has mastered Confucianism and Taoism, their power must be strong. They insist on respect of seniority, rejection of heresy, and disdain of abuse of force. Therefore, it needs a lot of time and energy to assassinate the Emperor and Crown Prince. Even with Devil Empress and Sword Emperor, it's hard to find an opportunity."

"Under the circumstances, it's most likely that Crown Prince will succeed to the throne. No one can change it." Meng Qi frowned.

Luo Shengyi laughed with confidence. "Having reined for many years, the Emperor was getting on in years, so he took precautions against him. He didn't like Crown Prince, and often took measures to crack him down. Were it not for Royal Advisor, Crown Prince would have been abolished. Therefore, other princes probably acceded to the throne with the Emperor's posthumous edict. However, while in the coma, the Emperor was under care overnight by the loyal Right Prime Minister to give no chance for tampering."

"It's unable to explain clearly in such limited time. Tomorrow, I will take you to meet the Third Prince. Since you're well-known, he must pay great attention to you."

For this matter, Meng Qi held some different views. In his opinion, there was no necessary correlation between the Third Prince's accession to the throne and Lu Guan's regain of trust. At that moment, the northwest was riddled by corruption. As long as he eliminates his enemies, the new Emperor will entrust him with important tasks without a doubt. Certainly, if it's such a simple thing, the Dominator of Samsara in Six Realms will not give 400 Karma points for this.

"No problem." He thought for a moment planning to make decisions after learning the Third Prince's behavior, tolerance, and talent. "How about Cao Zhan?"

Just now, he felt awkward that there were only Luo Shengyi and Ge Huai'en, and Cao Zhan was not seen again. However, he didn't receive any information that some people died.

"Having credit with the Third Prince, he was at his disposal anytime," Luo Shengyi calmly said. Unless Cao Zhan interfered with his affairs, he would not care what he did. "I heard you've fought with Evil Prince? How about the Immortal Pressing Art? How about his strength?"

Obviously, he also had Side Task III, so he was so concerned with the Evil Prince's strength and the Immortal Pressing Art's specialness. Moreover, he judged from Meng Qi's fights with others that they were well-matched in strength as long as nobody made careless mistakes. Thus, the comparison of strength between Meng Qi and Evil Prince was also applicable to him.

After thinking about it, Meng Qi said with neither concealment nor exaggeration, "In case of direct confrontation, I only can save my life with all my strength. "

In the fight above the river, Evil Prince was at an advantage in Qi movement with the help of river, Junk Ship, and shadow. Moreover, Meng Qi was hurt by his "Evil Ordeal" due to unsteadiness and poor change after soaring to dive. In addition, he was stunned by "Mortal Dust Fall". Thus, it was prudent to escape. In case of another confrontation with the Immortal Pressing Art, he would lose to a large extent unless thunder and clouds converged at that time.

Meng Qi knew that the Immortal Pressing Art was a top-ranking Dharma Access for absorbing, transforming and discharging Jin. Without the skill to highly condense genuine Qi, he will have little chance to hurt Evil Prince with the sharpness and specialness of "Evil Ordeal".

Yama's Invitation is stronger than Ananda Oath-breaking Bladesmanship in this aspect. The power dispersed with the first two moves of Ananda Oath-breaking Bladesmanship could impose people's mind, while that displayed with Yama's Invitation is purely condensed. But if it's well arranged, there might be a small chance to win. Certainly, it's very hard to kill Evil Prince who had mastered the Immortal Pressing Art and Illusory Demon Movement.

"Next time, I have to fight with Evil Prince by using Golden Bell Shield, Ananda Oath-breaking Bladesmanship, Yama's Invitation, and Nine Strategies Beyond the Swords. The image I painfully maintain will change again. The people nearby must say, 'Hum, Reckless Monk deserves the reputation'" Looking out of the window, Meng Qi felt a little sad.

"That means you're at disadvantage, and if we join together, we might kill the Evil Prince---" Luo Shengyi negated this judgment before he even finished the sentence. "It's said that even in the group fight, the Immortal Pressing Art is very inconvincible."

"Yes, I've also heard that before." Meng Qi certainly could not say that he knew the Immortal Pressing Art very well.

After exchanging the usual pleasantries and having dinner, Meng Qi and Ruan Shuyu took their leave. Meanwhile, they agreed to meet here tomorrow morning to visit the Third Prince.

It was dark then, and the streets were quiet. Meng Qi and Ruan Shuyu walked side by side. He couldn't resist the curiosity and asked Ruan Shuyu, "Except for assist and murder with zither, do you have any other ways to directly kill the enemy?"

Ruan Yushu glanced at him and then lightly plucked the zither.

Clang! A string bounced with a harsh voice like a sharp sword.

"I see." Meng Qi was satisfied and happy.

After pressing the string down and fastening it, Ruan Yushu coolly moved forward.

They stepped on a stone bridge and slowly walked. Suddenly, they saw a grey-haired elder.

Holding a sword, he sat on the stone stairs with his back to Meng Qi. Strangely, his existence grew out of being and not-being.

Meng Qi's face stiffened as he pulled his sword out and stood in front of Ruan Shuyu.

"I heard that the swordsmanship of 'God-petrifying Sword' Xiao Meng is irresistible and takes offense for defense, so I want to have a try." The elder slowly stood up to present an aggressive posture like an unsheathed sharp sword directly inserting Meng Qi's heart.