Chapter 0193: The Goal Is To Strengthen House Luolan


"Secret of Kings?"

Li Luo and Jiang Qing'e had never heard of it before.

Of course, it was not just them. The King Stage was a realm that seemed beyond everyone from the Xia Kingdom.

The number of Kings since the Xia Kingdom's founding could be counted all too easily.

And right now, perhaps only the very seldom seen principal of the Astral Sage College was one...

Li Luo and Jiang Qing'e could imagine how hard the path to King was, and why Li Taixuan and Tan Tailan would attract a lot of attention if it was known that they had such a secret.

Maybe the intruder was after that.

Things were getting interesting now. His parents were not from the Xia Kingdom, and they had such a wondrous treasure.

Li Luo suddenly felt like they had kept a lot of secrets from him.

"Uncle Biao, is there a reason you decided to share all this information now?" Jiang Qing'e asked quietly.

"Sharp," he said with a sober smile. "I'm afraid our enemies have clearly mapped out the limits of House Luolan's defensive wards. I think the defensive wards will reach their weakest state in about half a year's time.

"Our enemy might make good use of that... They might come in swarms to invade headquarters, seek out the underground palace, extinguish Li Taixuan and Tan Tailan's natal fires, and take away the divine matter.

"If things get to that point, I'm afraid I will not be able to stop them."

They were dismayed. A mere half a year? If that was true, then House Luolan was in great danger!

"So in this half a year, I hope that you can make House Luolan strong, or at least stable. Then we can deal with them better."

They knew the gravity of the task laid upon them. They thought they had time, but things were urgent.

Half a year...

No breathing room at all.

Still, there was no choice but to get it done. The alternative was invasion, extinguished natal fires, and no more divine matter. That was an unacceptable outcome.

"Uncle Biao, don't be too worried. The intruder's background might be unknown, but they must have their own fears, considering how stealthily they've been moving so far. I think that any drastic move they make will definitely catch the attention of the Astral Sage College, the Golden Dragon Bank, the royal court, and other great powers...

"They may or may not know about the divine matter, but I think a little chaos and confusion might be to our advantage," she pointed out.

Ox Biaobiao nodded. Their enemy had moved very cautiously, perhaps to keep House Luolan's secret from others as well.

"Of course, we cannot pin our hopes on others. We have to work hard to make House Luolan strong," Jiang Qing'e asserted.

The other two nodded.

Ox Biaobiao was relieved now that Li Luo and Jiang Qing'e were up to speed.

"Uncle Biao, you should have told us earlier." Li Luo smiled.

He chuckled. "And what were you going to do about it, Young Lord?"

The remark chafed. Did he see Li Luo as too weak before?

Ox Biaobiao suddenly stared at Li Luo.

"House Luolan's situation is pressing, but you should spare some attention for your own lifespan, Young Lord."

Li Luo stared at him, astonished. He knew?! 

Back when Ox Biaobiao had said he was hollow, he had guessed that the old man knew. But now he was making it plain as could be.

"Lifespan??" Jiang Qing'e whirled around, horror-struck. Her eyes pinned him. "What's this about lifespan, Li Luo!?!" she demanded in a trembling voice.

 

 "You don't know? He didn't tell you?" Ox Biaobiao rubbed his head and smiled apologetically at Li Luo.

"My big, fat mouth..."

"Uncle Biao, please shut it immediately."

Li Luo seriously suspected that he had done it on purpose!

"Li Luo, explain. Now!" Jiang Qing'e shouted.

"Er, it's nothing much..." Li Luo said in a small voice. "Back when I solved the problem of the blank palaces, I paid a small price... leaving me with five years left to live."

Boom!

Light resonant energy exploded out of Jiang Qing'e's body, oozing and flowing from her. It was undirected, a loss of emotional control. Her power pooled around her, lighting up the shock and hurt on her face.

She could not believe it.

Five years of life?! 

Li Luo only had five years left to live?! 

He hurriedly calmed her down. "Don't worry, it's temporary. As long as I can reach the Duke Stage within the five years, all of my lifespan will come back!"

That worked a little. Her light resonant energy faded away, but her anger did not. "Duke in five years?"

In five years, he would be 23 years old. It was unheard of to become a Duke by then. Perhaps not even Li Taixuan and Tan Tailan had pulled it off.

Jiang Qing'e might be on track to breaking that record, but she had a ninth-grade light resonance.

Li Luo might have dual resonances, but to get that far...

He nodded eagerly. "Don't worry, I'll definitely do it in five years! Not like there was a choice. I had to, if I wanted to solve the problem of my blank palaces."

Jiang Qing'e fell silent, then she sighed. The matter was already decided, and it could not be changed. Accept it and move on. Still, she was not ready to deal with Li Luo yet.

Angry.

She was angry that he had kept such an important fact from her.

Li Luo could only smile apologetically at her and throw resentful looks Ox Biaobiao's way. “Damn, Uncle Biao, we had no beef! Why did you have to do me like that!?”

Ox Biaobiao grinned and left.

Li Luo and Jiang Qing'e followed, then they emerged in a deserted corridor rather than the back kitchen.

"Keep the secrets I've shown you today close. Let no one else know. And just focus on how to make House Luolan strong.

"Good luck." Ox Biaobiao waved them off, then he turned and left.

Li Luo turned back to the still-silent Jiang Qing'e. "Sister Qing'e, don't be angry, okay?" he said in his best innocent voice.

"Come with me to the practice room." She stalked off.

Li Luo gulped, his legs turning to jelly. But eventually, he squared his shoulders and followed.

...

Practice room.

Li Luo strapped on his protective gear, wooden sword in hand as he looked painfully across the room. Jiang Qing'e cut a sexy figure in her own gear.

Although her face right now was not at all appealing.

She looked ready to beat the stuffing out of him... Oh well. If that was what it took to appease her anger, then he would take it.

Swish!

Her wooden sword hissed through the air, and Li Luo's vision seemed to glitch as she suddenly appeared before him.

The wooden sword sliced down! 

It was too quick to block!

Li Luo gave it up, closing his eyes. He was salted fish, hanging on the rack.

Ting!

He felt the breeze of the sword passing and clenched his jaw, but the sword landed lightly on his shoulder.

He opened his eyes cautiously.

Close up, he could feel her trembling, her always-steady eyes now trembling with great fear.

His heart melted.

"Sister Qing'e, I've made you worry." He sighed.

She came even closer, pressing her forehead to his. Their eyes were close enough to reflect each other's faces.

She closed hers. "You must do it, Li Luo," she whispered. "Promise me."

He nodded with a tender smile.

"I will.

"I promise."

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