Way of the Devil

 
 

Way of the Devil Chapter 29


Hearing Yan Kai's words, Lu Sheng simply smiled instead of getting angry.

"In that case, I'll just pass a message to the underworld in the city. If any help is needed, you can approach all the clothes shop, pharmacies, blacksmiths in the city. They'll all lend you their assistance."

"That works too," Yan Kai nodded. "Alright, since that's settled, we'll make a move first. First order of business is to examine the Lily Flower Room."

"Please be my guest," Lu Sheng smiled.

"I'll go too," the female adventurer Zhuan Feng said as she followed them.

Watching the trio leave, Lu Sheng gave the order to permit them free access to the entire Lu Manor. None was to intercept them.

"Little Sheng, do you think those three will be of use?" Lu Quanan had just entered through the door and had heard their exchange earlier.

"Whether or not they'll be of use doesn't matter. Simply by being able to see through my wounds and curing me with a bottle of potion it was worth us spending this sum of money," Lu Sheng replied.

"I give you full authority to oversee this matter. The entire Manor, myself included, will take orders from you. So just do as you deem fit!" Lu Quanan said in all seriousness.

"Thanks, Dad," Lu Sheng replied with a smile.

After Lu Quanan left, Lu Sheng returned to his bedroom and had Little Qiao feed him with nourishing bird's nest by the spoon. [1]

Ever since he was injured, he had not seriously upgraded his martial arts.

After all, to expend energy and Qi to upgrade his martial arts with his body damaged was to court death, not to seek strength.

With the Yin Qi now purged from his body, however, he began thinking about how he should plan his future development.

While drinking bird's nest, Lu Sheng sat on the rattan chair in his courtyard, his eyes closed and body reclining lazily.

"Young Master, Miss Qingqing has already not returned for a few days. Could she have…?" Little Qiao asked softly with a face full of worry.

"Don't be anxious. There's no use in getting anxious. Leave these professional matters to the professionals to deal with. Even if we went along, we'd just be getting in the way," Lu Sheng shook his head.

"It's just that when I see Second Mistress crying her heart out every day, it breaks my heart too," Little Qiao whispered. "Young Master, do you think they're up to it?"

"They should be able to dig some things up. As for how much, I'm not sure," Lu Sheng replied casually. His mind, however, was on whether or not Yan Kai's words were true.

Thinking it through in detail, the Taoist had no reason to lie. If he was out to swindle money, just that bottle of Yang Returning Potion would have been enough to make him a handsome profit.

With such people handling the issue now, there was no need to get anxious indeed, especially since the Demonic Ghost in Lu Manor had been dealt with. They were safe for the time being.

It's just that, according to Yan Kai, there still remained more than a few Demonic Ghosts in Nine Links City.

Immediately, a thick sense of danger rose in Lu Sheng's heart.

Previously, it had already taken all his might to deal with just one Demonic Ghost. Had there been a few more…

"Leave first. I want some quiet and rest," Lu Sheng suddenly said.

Little Qiao responded in acknowledgement and helped him onto his bed and covered him in blankets. Then she left the room.

The door closed with a "ka-cha" sound.

Lu Sheng slowly rose from the bed and took out a grey paper packet from a drawer.

He opened the paper packet gingerly to reveal some fine greyish-white powder.

This were the remains left behind by the Demonic Ghost.

Lu Sheng did not know whether it was of any worth. But any object left behind by such supernatural beings had to be of some use somehow.

Hence, he did not dispose of the powder, but rather hid it carefully.

He spread the powder out on the tabletop.

'Looks like if I want to find out what this stuff is good for, I've got to look for the Yan Kai duo,' he mused.

Keeping the powder, he finally climbed onto the bed and slept soundly.

When he awoke, it was already dark.

Little Qiao was lighting up the candles in the room. She was twelve years old this year. She was presently bent over, with her butt under a small white dress facing Lu Sheng. Its perkiness was a huge temptation.

The hem of her skirt reached towards the knee. With her present bent-over position, the silhouette of her round, perky butt was clearly visible through her skirt.

"Ahem…" Lu Sheng coughed lightly. Having awoken, he was feeling refreshed and alert.

Little Qiao heard him immediately and quickly spun around.

"Young Master, you're up! There's still some fungus soup boiled with vegetables in the kitchen. Would Young Master like a bowl?"

"What time is it now?"

"Almost the Hai hour," Little Qiao hurriedly replied.

Lu Sheng did the conversion in his mind. The Hai hour was between nine to eleven o'clock at night.

"Oh, it's already so late. Have the few who went out in the day sent any word back?"

"You mean the Taoists?" Little Qiao clarified.

"Yeah."

"Brother Yuhan has been waiting outside for a long time. There should be some news," Little Qiao replied.

"Let Yuhan come in."

Lu Sheng rubbed his temples and began climbing out of bed to get dressed.

By the time he was properly dressed in his clothes and outer robe, the muscular guard from before—Yuhan—had entered.

"Young Master," he clasped his hands together in ceremony.

"Is there any news from Taoist Yan Kai?"

"Yes. Taoist Yan Kai went to the Zheng Family. One hour ago, he solved a similar missing person case for the Zheng Family. Now, he's gone to the old Xu Manor," at the mention of Yankai, a look of respect appeared on Yuhan's face.

This man was able to resolve that strange matter so quickly!

One needed to know that he had seen what that Demonic Ghost was like—it could possess a body, it could fly, it was extremely fast and even carried extremely dense toxic Qi on its body. Even Young Master was hurt by it!

Yet that Taoist could deal with such a monster so easily. He truly deserved the title of an expert!

Lu Sheng was unsurprised. "How about Miss Zhuan Feng?"

"She's already found some leads. I've instructed a few men to follow Miss Zhuan Feng out of the city. There should be a message from them soon," Yuhan replied.

"They truly are professionals indeed. When these matters land in their hands, clues start showing up in just one day!" Lu Sheng exclaimed. "Let's go. Grab a bite with me. Hopefully, my sister is fine."

Neither Yuhan nor Little Qiao dared to reply to that. As servants, no matter how they replied to such comments, they were inviting trouble onto themselves.

Lu Sheng led the two of them out of the bedroom, which was guarded by two guards. An entire table full of delicacies had already been prepared outside.

A few servant-maids were cleaning the utensils efficiently.

Lu Sheng sat down, grabbed some food with his chopsticks and put it into his mouth.

"News! Young Master! There's news!"

Suddenly, a series of shouts rang forth from outside the courtyard.

Lu Sheng rose at once. A fumbling houseman dashed into the courtyard through the entrance, panting while speaking loudly, "Second Miss… there's news of Second Miss! In the deserted Taoist temple outside the city!"

Outside Nine Links City, there were three Taoist temples. But only one was deserted.

It was situated north of Nine Links City, near the White Frozen Ocean. There was a series of deserted mountains there and a Taoist temple was built in the mountains. No one knew which Lord of the Dao was worshipped there. Neither did anyone know when the temple was built.

But Lu Sheng at least knew of that place. He had visited it several times when he went hiking as a boy.

Whenever it rained, they would head to the deserted Taoist temple for shelter.

"Is it that Taoist temple near the White Frozen Ocean?" Lu Sheng added to clarify.

"That's the one indeed," the housemen quickly answered. "Miss Zhuan Feng said that all the missing persons may be gathered in that Taoist Temple and that we can investigate it ourselves."

"What about Taoist Yan Kai?"

"They've already gone ahead!"

Lu Sheng's eyes narrowed. He had only just recovered and should not be so quick to join in the action.

But, this was a golden opportunity.

Ideally, the best scenario was that Taoist Yan Kai would stay for the long term. But from the looks of it, the duo including Yan Kai didn't seem like they were planning to stay for long. Rather, it appeared more as if they were merely passing by this place in the pursuit of some lead.

'Looks like I really need to think hard about how I can get word out of this Taoist regarding the rumored secret arts that can handle and deal with ghosts.'

Lu Sheng's original intention was to acquire some of the cultivation mantras used by those rumored immortality cultivators.

Since even things like Demonic Ghosts existed, perhaps those methods to cultivate immortality and become an immortal existed as well.

"Gather over ten men. We'll go take a look too."

At this thought, Lu Sheng gave the orders.

"Yes!" Yuhan quickly acknowledged.

***

The night wind howled, bringing with it a piercing coldness.

Among the mountains, a long line formed by red flaming torches was moving rapidly.

The leader, riding on a horse and wrapped in a thick coat, was none other than Lu Sheng.

Behind him was Yuhan, who was himself followed by over ten guards.

The party had advanced in the dark for the duration of a joss stick before finding the road that led towards the deserted Taoist temple mentioned by Zhuan Feng.

Equipped with torches and weapons like sabers, swords, bows and arrows, and wearing leather helmets, the party looked almost like real soldiers.

Everyone advanced another few hundred steps in the cold wind. Finally, an old, desolate grey- and yellow-colored Taoist temple revealed itself in the forest ahead.

The originally quiet and dark temple was now filled with sudden flashes of sparks. Faint yells and shouts came from it as well.

The cold wind was too strong. Lu Sheng was straining his ears, but all he could hear was the howling of the wind which covered up the sounds coming from the deserted Taoist temple.

When they were just a hundred steps away from the temple, he raised his hand, signaling the party to halt.

Now that they were near, everyone could hear the shouts coming out from the Taoist temple. They should have come from Taoist Yan Kai.

"Young Master, what should we do?"

Yuhan asked a trifle nervously, cold sweat breaking out on his forehead.

"There's no hurry," Lu Sheng tightened the fox fur outer coat around him. The fluffy white fox fur covered his neck tightly and looked very warm and snug. "If we go over now, we'll only become a burden to the Taoists. So, there's no hurry," Lu Sheng said gravely.

Everyone waited for a while longer. The sparks and flashes in the temple were getting brighter and brighter, and Taoist Yan Kai's shouts were getting clearer and clearer.

Lu Sheng waited outside quietly for a while, until the shouts from the temple ceased. Only then did he signal for a torch from a guard.

Gripping the torch himself, he approached the temple alone.

Yuhan wanted to stop him; but on a second thought, he gritted his teeth.

"Follow!" He shouted loudly, following closely after Lu Sheng.

As for the rest of the housemen and guards, their hair stood on its ends. But the iron rules of the Manor compelled them to advance forward, after Yuhan.

Although Yan Kai as well as Young Master were shielding them in front, these housemen and guards were largely inexperienced youths who had not seen blood yet. It was already to their credit that they were able to suppress their instinct to flee.

[1] ED/N: Edible Bird Nest, search that on wikipedia to find out what's that. To put it shortly, it's an actual bird nest that's made of solidified saliva of some bird; it apparently tastes great and has a big nutritional values, and is quite expensive. Here likely as a soup.