AST 975 – General Country, General Inn, Zu Yanglong
After everything was settled, the close members of Qing Clan decided that they would attend the wedding ceremony together. They wanted everyone to know that Qingqing was an important family member and that her wedding matters were not to be taken lightly. In any case, the Qing Clan felt that they owed Qingqing a great deal. If not for Qing Shui, her fate would be unknown.
When Qingqing was at the Yan Clan back then, she knew that she had a mother, and she desperately wanted her mother to come and bring her away from her miserable life. At that time, she didn’t know she had a little brother. In the end, it was her little brother who had turned her life around, giving her a life worth living in this world.
After all these years, Qing Shui had never really forgiven the Yan Clan for what they did to his family. Even though he had allowed the relatives from his father’s side to live, he had never visited them since then. Sparing their lives was an act of duty and respect for his father, otherwise, they would have been killed along with the other members of Yan Clan.
Qing Shui was actually heartbroken knowing that his father had died. He felt that way because of his mother, who had waited an extended amount of years in hopes that her husband would return to her side one day.
At this particular moment, Qing Shui went sightseeing and strolling at the neighboring mountains with Qingqing. He was dragged along by his sister, so he had no idea what she had in store for him. Nevertheless, whatever she decided to do, Qing Shui would do his best to meet her expectations.
“Qing Shui, do you think the members of Yan Clan will attend the ceremony?” Qingqing turned to ask Qing Shui after walking a distance into the mountains.
“Maybe. Sis, do you not want them to come? If you don’t want them to, then I will stop them from coming to the wedding.” Qing Shui said after a brief pause.
“It’s fine. We’ve stopped caring for them after we left the Yan City. But you know, grandfather and the others had no choice back then.” Qingqing sighed.
“I don’t care if they had a choice or not. If they could treat you like that back then, whatever their reasons were, it is just excuses. Having no relatives is better than having relatives like that. I really wish I could kill them off when I had the chance to.” Qing Shui became furious the more he thought about the Yan Clan.
He didn’t want to bring up this topic, but he couldn’t stand it anymore. His mother and Qingqing were his close family, including the other members of the Qing Clan. As for the Yan Clan, they were nothing more than strangers in the passing street. He had hoped that his father would be there, but he hadn’t expected that he would leave this world before he could have the chance to meet him face to face.
While listening closely to Qing Shui’s words, Qingqing was happy to realize that she was loved and cared for by her close family. Her face lit up as she felt a sense of contentment in her heart. She looked at Qing Shui with a cheerful expression and said, “I am so lucky to have a little brother like you.”
“Why the sudden sentimental words? We are siblings, linked together by blood. That will never change no matter where we are.” Qing Shui let out a soft laugh.
“Nothing, I just feel really happy, that’s all.”
“Are you happy because you are going to be a bride soon?” Qing Shui chuckled teasingly.
“You brat. Don’t tease me like that.” Qingqing followed up quickly as she became embarrassed by his words.
“Alright, fine. I will stop. Sis, Guo Polu is a great person, at least better than me, in my opinion.”
The next day, the members of the Qing Clan flew towards the Yan Jiang Country in succession. The number of flying mounts were adequate, so the number of people going to the Yan City wasn’t an issue. The items that were made to block against the force of the wind proved to be useful again. This time, the children were using them as they mounted the flying beasts on a high altitude journey.
Their schedule for this journey was strictly restricted to traveling during the daytime and resting during the night time. They would stop by cities for pit stops, and if they could stay away from camping in the wilderness, they would do just that. Encountering demonic beasts in the wild was a trivial issue for the adults, but they were more concerned that the children. They might be startled should they encounter one during their sleep.
The traveling group consisted of at least 30 people, including eight children. To break it down, this group consisted of Qing Shui’s children, Qing Zi’s children, Luan Luan, Yuchang, and the older members of the Qing Clan traveling in this journey to Yan Jiang Country.
They had finally reached the capital city of the General Country!
Even though Qing Shui hadn’t spent a lot of time in the Greencloud Continent, he could still remember most of the country names among the 81 countries in the continent. General Country was one of them. He could clearly remember it because the Yan Jiang country wasn’t far away from his home, and the name was simple to memorize.
Dusk was approaching, and Qing Shui decided to find an inn for the whole family to stay the night. The inn he chose had a simple name that was easy to remember as well.
“Mingyue, how did the name ‘General Country’ come by?” Qing Shui stood in front of the inn and asked Canghai Mingyue with a smile.
“According to the legends, the legacy of the General Country had been passed down from a long time ago, making it the oldest and the most ancient country in the Greencloud Continent. A long time ago, the sect clans weren’t the most powerful in the World of the Nine Continents. The Dynasty Emperor held the absolute power in the world, and the General Country was said to be the most powerful military stronghold back then. After all these years, General Country was still the most well-preserved area in the continent. The other countries had gone through tremendous changes and even had their names modified several times.” Canghai Mingyue explained as she glanced towards the ancient structure of the General Inn.
The power ranking of the General Country in the Greencloud Continent was only mediocre at best. This country had been keeping a low profile in all aspects and affairs. There were rarely rumors about the General Country, which piqued Qing Shui’s curiosity more than anything else.
Based on the name of the inn alone, this must be an inn catered to the authorities and officials in the General Country a long time ago. When the waitresses saw a group of 30 people ranging from children to elders entering the inn, they knew that they were a family, presumably from a wealthy clan based on their extravagant clothings and distinguished aura.
Bringing an entire family for a migration was considered normal in the World of the Nine Continents. Most people would only do that if they could not survive in their previous home, or they were planning to move from a smaller city to a bigger place to live. In most cases, a big family would have guards to keep them safe from harm, but the Qing Clan had none, making them seemed like a bunch of castaways instead. This was despite the luxurious clothing on every member of the Qing Clan. After all, poor people could still afford to dress flashy in order to garner positive reactions from the public.
Those with a bit of power and wealth could hire hundreds and thousands of bodyguards, with the minimum amount being ten. Qing Shui’s group had children and women, so most people would feel anxious when they saw a large family without guards whatsoever.
Of course, Qing Shui knew that very well. He turned to look at the ladies beside him. They were all notably attractive, which could only mean trouble to the family. It would be more strange if the public was devoid of restless behavior after seeing a couple of alluring women traveling to an unfamiliar place like this.
Evil forces of supremacy would always lurk about in every corner of the continent. The stronger these forces were, the more hedonic they would become. These people had a strong pillar of support in other parts of the country who would stop at nothing to cause evil and destruction to others without any reason. Some people could afford to act recklessly for the rest of their lives while living in the shadows of those who would protect them.
Qing Shui had heard of such things in his past life before. Because of money and power, these evildoers could attack other people in the daylight, took liberty of married women and even perform indecent acts on those innocent women without any consequences……
Zu Yanglong was drinking wine with three other young men in the General Inn. He was a profligate son from part of the younger generation in the General Country who held the power of the General Manor in his hands. Because of this, his life was easy. He had everything he wanted – riches, people, and women. If he wanted a woman, regardless of her marital status, he would always acquire them as his possession without fail. Many people called him a demon behind his back because of these shameless acts.
His grandfather was the third master of the General Manor. No one would dare provoke the General Manor in the General Country because of their influence. Even if one were to be bullied by the members of the General Manor, they would not make a peep about it. Should they curse in front of Zu Yanglong even in the slightest, they would be eliminated immediately. And because of this reason, he was also called as a demon. Of course, no one would be foolish enough to call him that in his presence.
They were many people in the world, so even if Zu Yanglong were to bully one random person each day, he had only just touched the tip of the iceberg. He had never once caused any real trouble to his clan either. However, in these past few days, he had been gloomy because he could not get an erection from the women he had met a few days ago. The physicians said that he had over-exhausted himself, and he needed rest….. which was all the more to be worried about. Zu Yanglong called over his usual immoral friends to the General Inn in hopes of drinking his problem away.
The General Inn was the General Manor’s main property. Even though this wasn’t the Zu Clan’s industrial business, they were allowed to stay and dine here for free. At that moment, a large group of people came in from the entrance door. There were men and women in the group, as well as elders and children.
When Zu Yanglong saw an alluring woman in a violet dress holding a delicate girl in her arms, he began to feel restless in his heart. His eyes lit up further when he saw a few more women following behind as they walked closely within the group.
“Young master Zu, this is the first time I’ve seen so many exquisite women in my life. The ones in the past were nothing compared to the ones I’m seeing now.” A slender young man with a hooked nose spoke out to his master.
“Young master Zu, these people don’t look like they are from this country. They must be a family, so I think we should be careful with our plans,” said another young man who looked like a frail scholar in a soft voice.
“Regardless, no one can evade my grasp once they have entered the General Country. I will regret it for the rest of my life if I let them go freely just like that.” Zu Yanglong revealed a sinister smile as he said with a playful tone.
“Tongliang, go to the kitchen. You should know what to do. Use all of those medicinal powders if you can.” Zu Yanglong gulped down a cup of wine happily as soon as he finished commanding his subordinates.
The group that had passed by them were Qing Shui and his family members. When he noticed the attention he had garnered from those men, he shrugged them off. His spiritual sense was more acute as ever, and he didn’t sense anything that could prove a great threat to him and his family.
He noticed them on the third floor before proceeding towards the fourth floor. Each floor had been partitioned into smaller sections that could be booked with other sections for a large group of people. Qing Shui took the left side of the room that consisted of roughly 30 subsections, which was more than enough to fit his family of 30 inside.
After settling the matters of their rooms, they went to the dining table outside to have a meal. Their rooms were too small to adequately have a family meal. There were halls outside their rooms, but they were too small for fit everyone for a place to eat. However, there was just enough space for them to sit and chat idly.
“Send in your best dishes. If we need some more, please send some over again.” Qing Shui made a large order when he saw a few customers dining in the area. Since they were already in this new country, they decided to try some local delicacies and enjoy their meal.
The waitress took their order and went downstairs. Everyone chatted in the meantime as they waited for the dishes to be served.
‘Daddy, when are going to reach to Yan Jiang City?” Qing Ying sat besides her father and asked softly.
“We will reach there the day after tomorrow. Why, are you feeling ill?” Qing Shui lowered his head and asked Qing Ying gently. Their journey had been at a moderate speed because they had children traveling with them.
“No, I’m just asking. I feel that we have traveled quite far from home.”
Qing Shui smiled and rubbed Qing Ying’s head. This was her first journey away from home, and she seemed quite excited about it.
Within a few moments, dozens of waitresses climbed up in succession, each holding two dishes. The dishes were placed on a tray covered in yellow silk. The waitresses proceeded to place the dishes in the center of the table. Steam wafted from the dishes, and a delicious aroma traveled quickly to their noses.
Even though Qing Shui thought that these dishes were decent, half of the dishes consisted of lean meat, and the other half were vegetarian cuisines. Regardless of the color and flavors of the dishes, they all looked appetizing. One look at the dishes and the family members could not help but salivate with hunger.
Suddenly, Qing Shui furrowed his brows but quickly eased his nerves after that. The children were all salivating despite the delicious dishes he had made for them back at home. However, any kind of dishes worth salivating would instantly become the children’s favorite, regardless of the food or taste.
Qing Shui quickly picked up a portion of the dishes and placed them into his children’s bowls. After that, he called everyone to start eating while the dishes were still warm. Some of the family members immediately frowned before they took their first bite. They only started eating after they took a glance at Qing Shui, who seemed calm and undisturbed by the food.
Qing Shui knew that someone had contaminated their food with sleeping drugs that would only show its effectiveness after one hour. Their bodies would not be harmed, but they would be put to sleep for at least two days. The drugs were flavorless and colorless, but that wasn’t enough to fool Qing Shui’s spiritual sense from detecting those substances in the dishes.
However, he wasn’t afraid of the drug’s effects, so he ate his food like everything was normal. He wanted to know what kind of person would do such a reckless thing to his family. If they were foolish enough to do such things, they should prepare for the consequence that he had planned for them.
Of course, he was furious, but he didn’t show it on his face. The drugs were not poisonous, which meant that the perpetrators had been targeting the ladies all along. The more he thought about the shameless acts of the perpetrators, the more his heart was fueled with an intense flame of fury.
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