# 138. King Yu
*Translator Preface:* On Qidian, chapter number 136 is repeated twice. Because this is frankly really dumb, we’ve decided to just count the second 136 as 137. So from this chapter, we are off-by-one from the official Qidian count.
Xu Qi’an followed the Daoist Acolyte through the front palace, through open squares, through towers upon towers and gardens upon gardens, coming to the deepest part of Lingbao palace.
This was a quiet small garden. The flowers and grasses had long since withered, a pavilion rose upon a man-made hill, and an aquamarine pond sat by, idly rippling in the wind.
A Female Daoist Priest, with the appearance that could bring down countries, sat cross-legged on the pond, clad in a yin-yang robe, a lotus crown on her head, a spot of cinnabar red on her forehead. She was both graceful and lively, and also charming and enticing.
Her face was pale white like crystal, carved without any blemish. The ridge of her nose, the lines on her face were well-defined and beautiful, her lips were red and plump, and with her eyes closed, her intersecting eyelashes were long and thick.
As soon as Xu Qi’an entered the garden, he stared at her, walking and staring, yet what stunned him was that he could not tell her age.
It felt as if she was a woman just past thirty, yet it also felt as if she was a honey-sweet motherly woman, or if you look closely, you can still see the pure and kittenish aura around her body.
*Why does she give me an “I have to find a way to marry this woman” type of feeling, is it that I’ve not slept with a woman in too long, or is this a special trait of the Human sect cultivation… enticement?*
Thoughts flashed within him, though his face remained unchanged.
“Did Jinlian send you to find me?” Luo Yuheng opened her beautiful eyes. The ratio between iris and white was just perfect, and they seemed to be filled with energy.
“Yes. Jinlian Daozhang’s Yin Spirit is gravely hurt, his body also hurt, and so he asked me to ask you for a single Juyuan pill.”
At any other time, Xu Qi’an would say “ask you for two pills”, and then embezzle one for himself.
But he was not familiar with this Human Sect master Luo Yuheng, and to repay Jinlian Daozhang saving his life, he would play by the rules.
In front of these elders, one must never presume that because one thinks it’s good and act out, as that would only flip the boat.
“You are a member of the Heaven and Earth Society, and carry the Earth Book?” Luo Yuheng’s voice was extremely pleasant to listen to; it had texture, it had magnetism, making Xu Qi’an think of the *seiyu* in his past life.[^1]
“Number Three.” Xu Qi’an replied.
Luo Yuheng nodded, her beautiful pupils examining him, not speaking for a long time. Suddenly, she let out a “eh?” sound, as a confused expression flashed across her face.
“Your fortune is very strange… tell me your birthdate and eight-character horoscope.” The beautiful Daoist Nun asked.
A cool wind brushed over, as the hems of the Daoist robe on the water waved slightly. With Xu Qi’an’s angle, he could just about see the outline of a pair of plump and full buttocks.
*She can see through my unusualness?* Xu Qi’an immediately replied with his birthdate and horoscope.
Luo Yuheng’s slender jade hands stretched out of their sleeves, her crystalline fingers making formations, divining for a while, her brows tightly furrowed, as if coming across a difficult to solve problem.
Xu Qi’an felt somewhat anxious, asking with some anticipation: “National Teacher, how is it?”
“The Monkey!” she said.
*How do you know I like monkeys… pah! She just said what my birthday and horoscope represents, like the constellation horoscopes of my past life…* Xu Qi’an discovered that a perverted intent deep in his heart was beginning to stir.
*This woman keeps making me think of those 36D women; mum’s friends, kind aunties… This can’t be something wrong with me, but rather she is corrupting my emotions… is this a uniqueness of the Human Sect? Mn, later I’ll ask Jinlian Daozhang.*
Luo Yuheng shook her head, her magnetic voice resonating out, “Utterly ordinary.”
She did not seem to want to continue, pulling a porcelain bottle out of her sleeve, and with a flick of her finger, the bottle floated towards Xu Qi’an.
“Thank you, National Teacher!” Xu Qi’an took the bottle, and clasped his hands.
*She also can’t see what’s up with me, and is only like Jinlian Daozhang, able to vaguely feel something was off…* Xu Qi’an did not continue to drool, and left promptly.
A carriage entered the Imperial City, stopping in front of the Palace complex gates. Jiang Lyuzhong, who was driving the carriage, jumped off, and took out a wooden step-stool to let Wei Yuan down.
Apart from the members of the royal family, officials and civil servants could not ride carriages or horses in the Palace city.
Wei Yuan lead Jiang Lyuzhong into the Palace City, and as they drew close to the imperial study, they met Eunuch Liu.
“Duke Wei, you’ve come.” Eunuch Liu let out a torrent of complaint, “His Majesty ordered me to welcome you here, let’s go, come on, His Majesty is still letting off thunder in the Study.”
Wei Yuan solemnly nodded his head, his aura unshakable even if the heavens were falling naturally was not affected by Eunuch Liu’s words.
“A few old things just asked for your impeachment again… aiya, you know what to do, but in short be careful.”
Eunuch Liu and Wei Yuan were of the same camp; Wei Yuan was the spiritual leader of all the palace eunuchs. If any great official wanted to put insiders into the palace, they would face multitudes of hardships, yet Wei Yuan could do it with ease.
Wei Yuan came to the door of the Imperial Study, and heard the raging of Emperor Yuanjing coming from inside: “Useless, you’re all useless! The Sangpo Case still hasn’t been solved even now, and the leads you two have aren’t even as many as a small Bronze Gong! What use does the court have in raising you two piles of junk? What use do we have in having you?”
In the Imperial Study, the Minister of the Ministry of Law, and the Censor of the High Court, as well as the City Prefecture Governor Chen Hanguang, all stood shoulder to shoulder in the middle of the room, heads lowered and listening to Emperor Yuanjing’s scolding.
Apart from those three, the attending Prime Minister, the High Ministers of each of the Departments, a few nobles, stood to either side, eyes looking at their noses, noses looking at their hearts.
The case of the destruction of the Earl Pingyuan’s family had by now spread all across court, and all the kings and aristocrats fell into a deep panic. They simultaneously sent in letters of impeachment for Wei Yuan, ordering him to investigate the killer, as well as secretly building up their own guards.
People were in disarray. Some said that it was a strong Yao monster that infiltrated the capital, wantonly killing important servants, causing chaos beyond any form of tolerance. Some others said that it was the Buddhists covertly causing strife, with the aim to spread their religion to the Central Plains, forcing the Great Feng’s royal dynasty to submit.
“Your Majesty, why is the Jianzheng ill at his time?”
“Heh, ill? Clearly he doesn’t want to get involved.”
“Why did the attacker escape last night? The Nightwatchers have failed at their duty, Your Majesty must severely punish Wei Yuan.”
The great servants sent accusations flying around the room.
Wei Yuan entered the Imperial study in a hubbub of argument.
“Wei Yuan!” seeing him come in, Emperor Yuanjing grabbed a stack of papers, and launched them at Wei Yuan. In the rustle of falling papers, he shouted angrily:
“Three days, in three days you will find the killer. Otherwise we will remove your position!”
Wei Yuan lightly dodged the storm of paper, unhurriedly picking up the fallen dossiers and files, sighing “Your Majesty does not need to be angry; to cultivate Dao is to cultivate one’s heart, to perturb one’s heart is not a good thing.”
Emperor Yuanjing grunted coldly.
The Minister of Law said solemnly, “Your Majesty, the Nightwatchers have let attackers escape on two occasions, your servant suspects Wei Yuan is conspiring with outsiders, and wants to cause chaos. Please may Your Majesty investigate.”
Emperor Yuanjing did not respond, looking at the head-lowered, unspeaking Chen Hanguang, “What does Governor Chen think?”
Even though Governor Chen was a fourth rank official, he oversaw the twenty-four counties around this capital city, and his political power was not less than that of any of the Ministers.
And Chen Hanguang was a wily old fox. With the intention of not offending either side, he said “The Sangpo Case has not yet finished, and now comes the murder of the Earl Pingyuan Family. Your Majesty, please do not be angered, keep a calm mind. Your servant thinks we should hear what Wei Yuan has to say.”
He very calmly dodged the bullet.
Emperor Yuanjing looked coldly at Wei Yuan.
“Your Majesty, the Earl Pingyuan’s case and the Sangpo case are one and the same.” Wei Yuan said.
In the Imperial study, everyone’s faces, including Emperor Yuanjing’s, turned slightly.
Wei Yuan did not look at everyone’s expressions, his head lowered towards the ground, announcing loudly, “Your lowly servant has already found out who killed the Earl Pingyuan’s family.”
“Who?” Someone unconsciously butted in, being Minister of War Zhang Feng.
Wei Yuan’s gaze scanned over him, and he did not reply, rather saying to Emperor Yuanjing, “Please may Your Majesty dismiss your attendants.”
As he said this, Wei Yuan could not help but think of Xu Qi’an.
Emperor Yuanjing looked deeply at Wei Yuan, before his sharp gaze scanned over the other servants, “My officials, please retreat for now.”
Everyone cupped their hands with strange expressions on their faces, and left the Imperial study.
Wei Yuan stayed in the Study for an hour, and no one knew what he said to Emperor Yuanjing.
“Duke Wei, Duke Wei…”
With the company of Eunuch Liu, as soon as Wei Yuan stepped out of the Imperial study, he heard someone call to him.
Looking over, he saw the crimson-robed thin-faced Minister of War Zhang Feng come over to meet him, his face full of smiles:
“Duke Wei, I wonder what sort of beast would exterminate the Earl Pingyuan’s family?”
Wei Yuan shook his head, “Minister Zhang, this case involves Sangpo, and I am not at leisure to disclose. When the truth has become clear, my Right Honourable Minister will naturally know.”
He cupped his hands, and left with wide strides.
Minster Sun’s conversation hit a wall. He was not angered, rather still with smiling face said “Take care, Duke Wei.”
After Wei Yuan left, he waited until the elders from the Imperial Study slowly came over, “Lord Liu, what did Wei Yuan say to His Majesty?”
“My Sirs, please, don’t make things hard for us.” Eunuch Liu waved his hands frantically.
“Lord Liu can just pick a few less sensitive things to say.” A confident voice floated over, belonging to the Prime Minister.
Eunuch Liu hesitated, before nodding, looking around at all the great servants, saying in a low voice “This case is being done by the Bronze Gong Xu Qi’an from the Nightwatchers. What Duke Wei said inside was heard entirely from him.”
All the servants exchanged looks.
As he left Lingbao palace, Xu Qi’an’s mind would intermittently flash up with the National Teacher’s country-toppling beauty, as his heart exclaimed about how different a Dao-cultivating woman was just different from others, about how she was like a jade-carved statue, with not a blemish on her face.
*At the very least one or two spots.*
*The sect master of the Earth Sect is second rank, the human sect wouldn't be far off… for a second rank, to call her a celestial wouldn’t be too far.*
As his small mare clopped along, he passed an instrument warehouse, and Xu Qi’an asked the guards for directions to King Yu’s manor.
*The trail of thought for the Sangpo Case must be changed. Let’s not investigate the Zhenbei King for now. I have a feeling, that if I were to figure out the events behind Henghui and Princess Pingyang, figure out what love and hatred these doomed lovers and Earl Pingyuan’s house had with each other, perhaps I could solve the Sangpo Case.*
*I don’t need half a month, I feel just a few days will do… perhaps even faster than that.*
*Tonight Jinlian Daozhang will come to find me, I must remember to ask him what’s up with the Human Sect leader. Clearly she’s a Nun, yet she has an enticing aura like a demoness.*
Xu Qi’an squeezed on his horse’s sides, urging his horse on.
King Yu’s Manor.
Xu Qi’an reigned in his horse, and showed his golden token in front of the guards’ wary expressions. “This official is specially appointed by His Majesty to lead the Sangpo Case investigation, I have a matter to speak with King Yu about, please pass this message on for me.”
Seeing the token, the guards reigned in their derisive intent, and quickly entered the manor.
Not long later, he returned, announcing “Please may Sir come with me, our Master would like to see you.”
King Yu’s manor was expansive; just from the front door to the front hall, took five minutes of walking.
In the front hall, Xu Qi’an saw Emperor Yuanjing’s younger brother, a King of the court.
This was not a old man, yet his white hairs were already numerous. His face was pale and sallow, his eyes showed illness and bad health, and the lines on his forehead were deep. Clearly a man of barely over forty, yet he looked even older than Emperor Yuanjing.
He wore a purple brocade robe, and his features were fairly well-placed.
“Bronze Gong?” King Yu held a teacup in his hand, and sipped it gently, his voice lacking in vigour.
Putting down his teacup, he said with astonishment, “Since when did brother Emperor make a Bronze Gong the lead investigator?”
“This lowly official is Xu Qi’an, has King Yu not heard of me before?” Xu Qi’an thought, that the Sangpo Case had become the biggest news story in the capital, from the highest of nobles to the lowest of civil servants, all should be watching it.
And as one of the lead investigators himself, perhaps those low down wouldn’t recognise him, but as part of the royal family, King Yu should have heard of him before.
King Yu nodded in realisation, “Ah yes, I remember. I’ve heard of you, but this king has not cared for the affairs of court for a long while, and couldn’t remember immediately.”
*It seems the disappearance of Princess Pingyang has hit him hard…* Xu Qi’an sighed.
“What do you need from me?” King Yu waved his hand, ordering his servants to serve tea.
[^1]: Seiyu (Japanese): Voice Actor. Voice actors in Japan can have a very large following just for their voice.