Nightfall - LightNovelsOnl.com
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Luo Kedi, commander of West-Hill Divine Palace, was a tall middle-aged man who looked like a moving metal fortress in his armor. However, when he knelt down in front of the light curtain, and the giant figure, he humbled himself as if he were a dwarf or a thin servant.
He was indeed the most loyal servant of Hierarch Lord in the West-Hill Divine Palace.
A watchdog on the Peach Mountain.
"Divine Hall is calling for strength more than ever. Since Ye Hongyu is gone, it is your duty to take her back. If she has not the strength we need, you shall kill her on my command for the sake of the Hall's dignity, and then, you shall find alternatives to the needed strength."
The Hierarch Lord said solemnly in the radiant light.
Luo Kedi kowtowed to the Lord, like a fallen fortress.
The Great Divine Priest of Revelation returned to his seat, his aged palm gently stroked the sunflower vines woven throne. Looking at the hundreds of deacons and officers of the Revelation Department kneeling on the floor, the wrinkles on his face were as deep as the cracks on the Peach Mountain cliffs.
Cheng Lixue waved his hand to dismiss the people, he walked to the side of the seat and whispered, "Finally, it happened. "
The Great Divine Priest replied, "It is not the thing my deductions imply."
Cheng Lixue was stunned and lost his tongue, he wondered if Ye Hongyu's defection was not what the Priest had foreseen, then what else could it be?
"It has not come yet."
The Priest said in a tired voice, "Everything is destined by Haotian. The Buddist's wheel of life rotates all the time. What is destined to happen will happen sooner or later."
Perhaps it was because of the exhaustion, or successive meetings with the Great Divine Priest of Judgment and the Hierarch Lord, the wrinkles around the Great Divine Priest of Revelation's eyes were getting horribly deeper.
Looking at these wrinkles, Cheng Lixue's heart was full of worries. He dared not bluntly ask, but essayed, "I have no idea where she might be."
The Priest smiled, and answered, "It does not need a deduction to know...Since the fool had left West-Hill, she must have gone to Chang'an City."
A strange look appeared on Cheng Lixue's face. He did not understand why the Priest was so sure about it.
"The Haotian Divine Light s.h.i.+nes on every corner in the world. Where can she live except in Chang'an City?"
The Great Divine Priest of Revelation sighed, and said with a smile, "Fortunately, Chang'an is a nice place where you can always find something interesting."
Learning about the Priest's view on Chang'an City, Cheng Lixue suddenly recalled his experience at the side gate of Chang'an Academy. He slightly frowned and said, "Chang'an really is an interesting city. During the battle between Ning Que and Liu Yiqing, I did not expect He Mingchi would perceive Ning Que's Divine Skill earlier than me."
He Mingchi was the disciple of Li Qingshan, the Nation Master of the Tang Empire.
At the side gate, Ning Que wielded his sword towards Liu Yiqing, the Divine Light shone brightly and cultivators present had no idea what happened, except for Cheng Lixue and He Mingchi.
Cheng Lixue broke the carriage wall.
He Mingchi crumbled the carriage wheel with his hands.
As the Grand Master of Revelation Department, West-Hill Divine Palace, it was not surprising that Cheng Lixue could immediately conclude that Ning Que had used Divine Skill. But how did He Mingchi do that?
Recalling what he had seen at that time, Cheng Lixue frowned again, and then he said, "I am sure He Mingchi has reached a higher state than me. He definitely is not as weak as the rumor suggests."
"For hundreds of years, the greatest wish of every hierarch is to bring back the people from South School of Haotian Taoism. Besides those boring talks about dignity and honor, it is their expertise that we really value. Since the Younger Brother Qingshan is the Nation Master of Tang Dynasty, how could his successor be such a loser as rumor suggests?"
The Great Divine Priest of Revelation said slowly, "I am wondering how Ye Hongyu's appearance in Chang'an City will affect the relations.h.i.+p between Divine Hall and the South School. We will see."
Thinking of what recently happened in Divine Hall, the att.i.tude of Hierarch Lord and Divine Priest of Judgement, Cheng Lixue said gloomily, "I am afraid Ye Hongyu would never come back."
The Priest shook his head and said, "She will come back one day."
Cheng Lixue felt confused, and he said, "How can you be so sure?"
The Priest sighed, and said, "How could the destined happen if she does not come back to the Peach Mountain?"
Summer was coming to West-Hill, as well as Chang'an City.
The early summer of Chang'an City was still tolerable. However, the sun had become tiresomely blazing, and flagstones in the afternoon started heating up.
The refurbishment beside the Yanming Lake was still going on. In order to complete it before midsummer, the construction team worked faster under the effects of reward and Fish-dragon Gang's pressure.
From dawn till dusk, the sound of striking and grinding constantly echoed in the lakeside houses. Fortunately, the original residents had already moved away, otherwise, there might be conflicts considering the noise and hot weather.
With the pa.s.sage of time, the refurbishment entered the final stage. Ning Que took Seventh Sister's tactical array drawing with him, and started to do his job.
Thanks to the gold and the reputation of Mr. Qi from Fish-dragon Gang, workers were quite cooperative even if in their eyes, Ning Que's designs did not make sense at all.
The refurbishment of the lakeside homestead was about to complete, and Seventh Sister's tactical array seemed to take shape and then hidden among those buildings and flowers.
The construction was not over. Ning Que still lived with Sangsang in the Old Brush Pen Shop. Hearing the news of their leaving, the merchants in the Lin 47th Street had a mixed feeling of relaxation and attachment. They thought, after the bigwigs moved away, Fish-dragon Gang would not continue to keep the peace, and Chang'an Local Government runners would never patrol the place several times a day.
Ning Que did not know what people were thinking. He was occupied with the Academy study at the back of the mountain and the refurbishment, besides, he must go to the palace regularly.
He went to the palace for the purpose of entering that wooden building. Shouldering the great responsibility of securing Chang'an City and considering his plan, Ning Que found he must get familiar with the G.o.d-stunning Array as soon as possible.
People all praised him for his talents in Talisman Taoism. Since talismans and arrays were connected, he should soon be able to master the big tactical array his master Yan Se left to him. However, unfortunately, his talents seemed to have exhausted on Talisman Taoism and others. On tactical array, there were few.
Ning Que did not know how to give up. Since he must master the big tactical array, the frustrations would not defeat him. To amend stupidity by diligence, as long as he could squeeze some time, Ning Que would go to the palace and learn.
The emperor greatly appreciated Ning Que's att.i.tude and allowed him to enter the palace at any time. When he wearily walked out of the building, the emperor would not let him leave but take him into the Imperial Study.
After entering the place more than ten times, Ning Que got acquainted with the head of Yulin Royal Guards, the bodyguards, eunuchs and palace maids, even with the Empress who ground the inkstone every day in the Imperial Study. But he was not familiar with the big tactical array of Chang'an City.
However, he still got something from it.
In addition to certain unspeakable benefits, the greatest benefit he had gained was the countless old trees on the bank of Yanming Lake, and the things constantly being sent to him.
Although the lakeside house and the land were bought and registered under the name of Chao Xiaoshu, it was impossible to keep it secret from too many people.
Lee Yu was the first to know the secret, and then Ning Que received a gift from the Princess of Tang Dynasty.
Now countless old trees were transplanted from Lee Yu's own fief to the bank of Yanming Lake. This generosity was invaluable.
The emperor and the empress also knew that he was working on his new home. The empress rewarded him with a lot of antiques, while His Majesty gave him plenty of calligraphy treasures.
This was the only thing Ning Que was dissatisfied with.
As time past, Chang'an City entered the midsummer. The sound of cicadas was getting louder in the Academy, and the refurbishment had been completed, a dozen houses were included in an open s.p.a.ce, the old walls soften by lake air were painted, and the narrow alley that pa.s.sed through the courtyard was transformed into a stone path in the garden, where flowers bloomed quietly and beautifully.
The merchants of Lin 47th Street led by Mr. and Mrs. Wu, a fake antique shop owner, were encouraged to hold a farewell dinner for Ning Que and Sangsang, ending their years in the Lin 47th Street.
On the same night, Ning Que and Sangsang moved to their house on the bank of Yanming Lake.
All the furniture had been prepared by the brothers of Fish-dragon Gang, freeing Sangsang from worrying about how to fill the large s.p.a.ce of a dozen houses.
As Mr. Qi strongly suggested, Ning Que kept the Old Brush Pen Shop since Chao Xiaoshu had already remitted his rent for many years. But it would not sell calligraphy anymore.
When the next spring rain fell, there would never be a lad unfulfilled or frustrated in the Old Brush Pen Shop, and there would never be a middle-aged man standing outside with an umbrella.
Accompanied by the sound of cicadas and unknown insects, Ning Que walked with Sangsang on the stone path beside Yanming Lake. Behind them, the beautiful houses were their new home.
The numerous old trees made the stone path and the house ever quiet. The pa.s.sing lake wind lowered the temperature. Compared with the heat outside, it was a completely different world.
Sangsang recalled the first two summers when Ning Que lay on the bamboo chair outside the back door and talked with the neighbors. It was like a hundred years ago.
"I never dreamt that one day, we could live in such a big house."
Many years ago, when they lived in a cave, a tree house, and a small courtyard in the City of Wei, they always imagined what would their future house look like when they got rich, now, walking in their own lakeside house, they realized how poor they were at that time.
"Isn't it nice?"
Ning Que asked.
Sangsang nodded, and said, "It is much better."