Chapter 224: Lu Wuji in Fine Fettle
With Jiang Chen’s assurance, Ye Rong naturally didn’t insist on maintaining martial law. He had truly been under a tremendous pressure from all around in the past couple of days.
Countless petitions and censures had flown before His Majesty like snowflakes. Fortunately, His Majesty didn’t express much at this moment, he displayed no leanings and gave it all the cold treatment.
He neither pressured Ye Rong, nor read any of the petitions.
It was only when Ye Rong lifted martial law that the surrounding pressure slowly died down.
Lu Wuji was a bit surprised when he received the news that Ye Rong had lifted the martial law. Although Yang Zhao had warned him to stay put, Lu Wuji still couldn’t help but make a trip.
“Uncle, it looks like that Ye Rong couldn’t hold up beneath all the pressure. Martial law has been lifted and our chance has arrived.” Lu Wuji’s expression was as vicious as a viper’s.
“Huh. I’d rather hoped that he’d hold out a bit longer. The more stubborn he had remained, the worse everyone’s impression of him would’ve been. This Ye Rong knows well when to advance and when to retreat.” Yang Zhao was quite regretful. He’d rather have used this opportunity to censure Ye Rong and perhaps even drag him down from his position.
Who would’ve thought that Ye Rong would give up after just a few days, robbing them of their best excuse in an instant.
Lu Wuji however, spoke “Uncle, what need we fear Ye Rong for if we remove Jiang Chen? Ye Rong is a tiger without claws when deprived of Jiang Chen’s support, just an enfeebled cat. Would it not be easy to drag him down when we move against him afterwards?”
Yang Zhao sighed, “Although Jiang Chen is important to Ye Rong and even ninety percent of the reason why Ye Rong could make it to his current position, Ye Rong is the Crown Prince right now and some preparations are needed in order to bring him down even if Jiang Chen is removed from the picture. That won’t be easy. Wuji, you really need to change your nasty habit of being rash.”
Yang Zhao delivered timely criticism for Lu Wuji’s reckless and unbridled behavior.
Lu Wuji chuckled. “Yes, Uncle! However, the main task at hand is to take down Jiang Chen and beat him into the ground!”
Yang Zhao didn’t deny this and nodded slightly. “Wuji, now that the greater picture has formed, you’ll need to guide the Hidden Hand well. Remember, don’t allow yourself be entrapped as well.”
“Hehe, don’t worry Uncle. A fall in the pit brings a gain in the wit. I suffered greatly when I stuck my neck out for Ye Dai, how could I make the same mistake this time? Now that the Hidden Hand is here and I can murder someone with a borrowed knife, what greater joy is there?”
Yang Zhao nodded. “Murdering someone with a borrowed knife. Well said. The Hidden Hand exacts revenge for all their grudges, let’s observe as they and Jiang Chen go at each other’s throats this time. Wuji, now that the martial law has been lifted, this is a superb opportunity for the Hidden Hand. However, Jiang Chen is no simple character, warn them not to make a move unless they have absolute confidence. They should either kill him in a single strike or lie in wait, gathering their strength. They need to find a chance to kill him with one shot. Should they fail, killing Jian Chen later will be much harder.”
“Speaking of killing, the Hidden Hand should be much better at it than us?” A sinister smile appeared on Lu Wuji’s lips. “They’re hailed as the strongest assassin organization within the sixteen kingdoms. With us feeding them intelligence and giving them conveniences, they should close up shop if they still can’t take care of a mere Jiang Chen!”
Lu Wuji had no doubts regarding the assassination abilities of Hidden Hand at all.
Although Jiang Chen was abstruse and currently had the limelight, he was still just a young man with shitastically wonderful luck at the end of the day. His little tricks and good luck were useless in the face of absolute power. Lu Wuji didn’t think that Jiang Chen would be able to escape disaster in the face of the Hidden Hand’s pursuit.
“Uncle, since the martial law has been lifted, I’m going to notify them and make some preparations.” Lu Wuji responded.
Yang Zhao thought for a moment and said, “Be careful on your way, don’t let anyone trail you. Otherwise, the opportunity will be gone if this matter is exposed and furthermore, we’ll be the ones doomed.”
Lu Wuji smiled, “Uncle, what do us Dragonteeth Guard do? It’s always us trailing others. Someone trailing us? We needn’t worry about that!”
“Caution is the parent of safety. We need to be careful with each step we take at the moment. We could lose everything in just one moment of carelessness.” In the end, Yang Zhao was still the experienced and steady one in the end.
Those within the Dragonteeth Guard all knew each other’s tricks, as such it was very unlikely that they’d be able to trail one another.
In addition, Jiang Chen didn’t have enough men to follow Lu Wuji. As for Ye Rong, although he was Crown Prince now, his network and connections still weren’t as wide as those of Yang Zhao’s, a vice director of the Dragonteeth Guard.
This was to say that Yang Zhao didn’t fear Ye Rong when it came to the eliteness of their troops. He was completely unafraid in this moment at least.
Otherwise, he would’ve never allowed Lu Wuji to act as he did. He didn’t oppose Lu Wuji meeting up with the Hidden Hand at this crucial moment obviously because he was fully confident that he had an overwhelming power in the information network compared to Ye Rong.
Lu Wuji wasn’t a fool. He was in no rush to go out after leaving Yang Zhao’s residence and only set out after half a day.
He didn’t make straight for his goal when he set out either, but instead took a walk through the streets of the capital and only headed for the Hidden Hand’s hideout after he had made certain that no one was tailing him.
Lu Wuji had indeed been quite cautious this time. He had men openly and covertly covering him, exercising utmost prudence to prevent being followed.
Xue San was a bit surprised to see Lu Wuji. “You again? Can you really do as you will within the capital of the Skylaurel Kingdom?”
Xue San didn’t want to maintain such a high profile like Lu Wuji.
“Is every assassin as cautious as you?” Lu Wuji smiled. “I naturally wouldn’t have come without a reason. I’ve brought good news.”
“What good news?” Xue San’s forehead creased.
“Crown Prince Ye Rong finally crumbled beneath the pressure and lifted martial law. Wouldn’t you say that this is good news? Without martial law and with our cover, I trust there will be no difficulties in your assassination plan?”
The Hidden Hand’s desire to kill Jiang Chen was quite ardent, but Lu Wuji’s desire to see Jiang Chen die was just as strong, or perhaps even stronger.
“Lifted martial law?” Xue San was a bit taken aback. “Isn’t that a trap?”
Assassins were naturally cautious. Where Lu Wuji and Yang Zhao saw opportunity, Xue San’s first thought was that it was a trap.
“Trap?” Lu Wuji guffawed. “Have you not heard of the censures and petitions flurrying down like snowflakes in court? Ye Rong has just been made into a Crown Prince and yet he has gone against the grain to order martial law. How much foundation would a newly vested Crown Prince have? Do you know how much inconvenience martial law brings to the lives of those dukes, nobles, and officials? The longer he laid down martial law, the thicker the stack of censures grew. Do you think he can bear up underneath all that?”
Xue San had no interest in the internal politics of the Skylaurel Kigndom. He was different from Lu Wuji. He was an assassin, and his first priority was to rule out all risk.
Although various reasons could lurk behind the sudden lifting of martial law, Xue San’s first thoughts were, whether there was a trap behind this martial law?
“Don’t you be paranoid Xue San. Although Ye Rong is the Crown Prince, my uncle still holds great influence within the capital. To be blunt, whatever ploy Ye Rong might be thinking of, he won’t have the power to execute it. His influence and his power’s foundation aren’t solid enough to set up a large scheme. Plus, you’ve brought your elites this time. How much of a ripple can a small scheme cause in the face of absolute power? Xue San, don’t tell me you actually fear Jiang Chen deep down?”
Lu Wuji wasn’t a fool as he even tried to goad Xue San into action through sarcasm.
However, such tactics were rendered useless in the face of an assassin.
Xue San snorted coldly and looked Lu Wuji like he was looking at an idiot.
“I really wouldn’t be afraid if Jiang Chen was as much of a buffoon as you are.” Xue San jeered mercilessly. “It’s a pity that he’s not. According to our intelligence, Jiang Chen isn’t that easy to handle. My Hidden Hand must kill Jiang Chen, but you’re not on the level to be in the know of how to kill him and what preparations we’ll be setting up. What you are to do is cooperate with us. You have no right to mouth off about other things, do you understand me?”
Lu Wuji’s face sank. “Xue San, are you looking down on me?”
Xue San laughed faintly. “I hope you prove worthy of my respect after this time’s partnership.”
Lu Wuji was greatly incensed. Although they were partners, the thing he abhorred the most was the feeling of being looked down on by others.
However, he still remained someone with a shrewd mind. Although he was infuriated, he knew better than to affect his partnership with the Hidden Hand over a mere verbal dispute.
In addition, he also knew that he couldn’t afford to get on the bad side of the Hidden Hand. It wasn’t that the Hidden Hand was a war machine, but assassins who lived in the underworld were like maggots latching onto a foot. There would be complications to one’s very death if they were to set their sights on you.
Just as Lu Wuji set foot outside his door, the Rat King keeping watch immediately commanded forth the elite of his children and locked onto Lu Wuji’s route from beneath the ground.
The Rat King then brought this intelligence back to Jiang Chen as soon as possible.
When he heard that Lu Wuji had made his move, Jiang Chen too was overjoyed. He immediately notified Ye Rong to covertly deploy his elite troops and set up a net according to the path that the Rat King had reported.
All of this was done with utmost secrecy.
Jiang Chen and Ye Rong both knew that Yang Zhao’s influence within the capital was like an intricate web laced with many informants. If they went about this with great fanfare, they would surely alert the enemy.
Jiang Chen wasn’t afraid of Yang Zhao, but he still decided to do things secretly as he cared for Xue Tong’s safety.
As for Lu Wuji and Xue San, they had no idea regarding of any of this.
“Lu Wuji, get rid of Xue Tong as soon as possible. Leaving him alive means an additional risk factor.” Xue San said again.
However, Lu Wuji’s plans were to thoroughly torture Xue Tong and have him accuse Jiang Chen and Ye Rong of their wrongdoings in the maze realm after Jiang Chen was destroyed, using him to drag Ye Rong down.
Killing Jiang Chen, deposing of Ye Rong, and raising up Ye Hao so that he, Lu Wuji would become the best candidate to be the general director of the Dragonteeth Guard after Ye Hao took the throne. That was Lu Wuji’s ultimate ambition.
And that was why he still allowed Xue Tong to live.