Pei Mianman spewed her tea everywhere.
Just what kind of life had this fellow been living until now? Wasn’t this a little too low?
Everyone in the court reacted, immediately exploding with rage.
“Bloody hell… Don’t stop me, I am going to hack that guy to pieces!”
“Where is my sword?”
“How can there be someone this low in this world?”
“Lady Qiu, do you even know what he is saying? How could you pick a degenerate like him?!”
You have successfully trolled Chen Xuan for 999 Rage points!
You have successfully trolled Jiang Fan for 999 Rage points!
You have successfully trolled Chu Hongcai for 999 Rage points!
You have successfully…
Zu An went mad with happiness as he watched a new wave of Rage points pour in.
An exceptional person really did have to do exceptional things!
However, these guys already seemed like they were after his life, and there was not way he could possibly be stupid enough to stay here and let them beat him up.
Before anyone could react in any meaningful way, he already escaped without a trace. The furious crowd was barred from following him by the staff of the Immortal Abode.
Sister Hua directed her subordinates to restrain the enraged crowd, throwing a resentful look at Zu An’s disappearing figure. This guy really knows how to cause trouble! Now I have this terrible mess to clean up.
Zu An whistled happily as he followed the maid. He wondered if he should visit this sort of establishment again.
Of course, with my amazing character, I would never come here for the girls. But it really is just too easy to farm Rage points here!
After just a rough calculation, he determined that the number of points he’d earned in the Immortal Abode was much greater than at any other time previously.
If he could rake in so many points every day, ascending to immortality would not be such an impossible dream.
Suddenly, his surroundings grew dark. He noticed that he had already left the interior of the Immortal Abode, and was standing in front of the sparkling Brightmoon River. The sky had grown dark, and lanterns were just being lit, which indicated it was early evening. The reflections of the lanterns on the water’s surface made it seem as if there were countless moons in the night sky.
Only the liveliness of a brothel street could have such wonderful scenery.
Zu An sighed as he asked the maid, “Cute lil’ sis, where are we headed?”
He looked around him. This doesn’t seem like Qiu Honglei’s lady chambers?
“Cute lil’ sis?” That servant girl was startled. She had clearly never heard anyone being addressed in such a way before.
However, compared to the way others treated maids like her—disrespectfully, as if they existed only to be ordered around—this ‘cute lil’ sis’ sounded rather nice.
Her face grew suffused with happiness. “The young miss is waiting for you on the boat.”
“Boat?” Zu An was bewildered. How was he ever going to get to a boat?
The maid squatted down and slid open a wooden door on the balcony floor, revealing a stepladder. He could just make out a small boat tied off nearby.
“Young master, please.” The maid gestured toward the stepladder.
“So many formalities,” Zu An chuckled. However, this didn’t really bother him. He took the ladder down.
As soon as he got in the boat, it slowly began to move towards the center of the river.
Zu An frowned. This can’t be some trap, could it?
However, he soon dismissed the thought. He didn’t seem to be one worth conspiring against.
Besides, his cultivation had now increased. The more skilled one became, the more daring they became. He quickly calmed himself.
“What a pity that cute lil’ sis didn’t get on as well. I forgot to ask for her name.” Zu An felt a twinge of regret.
“As expected, young master is different from any other ordinary person. You don’t seem to feel any fear.”
A gentle female voice came from within the cabin. It was none other than Qiu Honglei’s unique voice.
“What do I have to be scared of? That the lady will devour me?” Zu An said with a smile.
“Young master really knows how to joke around. Shouldn’t I be the one afraid of being eaten by you?” Qiu Honglei’s voice was smooth and rich, every word tugging at his heartstrings.
“Hurry up and come inside. The wind out there is too strong.”
As they chatted with each other, a voluptuous figure appeared on the very balcony that Zu An had departed from.
Pei Mianman stomped her feet as she watched that boat depart. “What a crafty vixen!”
Now that they had set out on the boat, there was no way she could listen in on their conversation.
“Forget it, I’ll search her room first. Hopefully I can find something there,” Pei Mianman said in a huff. Her figure quickly disappeared without a trace.
At the gorgeous woman’s invitation, Zu An raised the curtained entrance to the cabin of the boat.
Despite the small size of the boat, the interior of the cabin was warm and cozy. Zu An noticed a small carved table laid out with a few plates of exquisite-looking food. Qiu Honglei was sitting by the table and smiling at him.
Her beautiful eyes seemed to harbor hidden messages within them.
If he didn’t know better, Zu An would have thought that she was a wife eagerly waiting for her husband to return home.
A small and exquisite lantern hung from the wall. The faint yellow radiance cast a glow over her body, covering her in a warm amber hue.
“Young master is staring so intently at that small lantern. Could it be that I am not as pretty as that lantern?” Qiu Honglei sounded slightly hurt. However, there was no real annoyance on her face.
“I’ve just never seen such a yellow lamp before,” Zu An said, as he took a seat at the table.
If he’d had his way, he would definitely have sat next to Qiu Honglei, just to be as close to her as possible.
However, this boat was just too small! Just the table alone was enough to fill most of the room in the cabin. He couldn’t find a way to squeeze in next to her, so he could only sit down opposite her.
Is this girl doing this on purpose? Who is she even guarding against? Zu An thought resentfully.
“If the young master does not like the lamp, I can put it out.” Qiu Honglei rose halfway, revealing her endlessly seductive waistline.
Zu An stopped her and said, “There’s no need. The yellow light actually makes me feel warm. Besides, I won’t be able to admire Lady Qiu’s beauty without it. That would really be a pity.”
“Young master’s mouth really is sweet. No wonder you were able to please my maid so easily.” Qiu Honglei said with an alluring expression.
Zu An jumped in fright. “Do you have clairvoyance or something?” How did she know what he’d done when she’d been so far away?
Qiu Honglei smiled. She gave no explanation, only pointing at the two small pots beside her. “Does young master wish to drink tea or alcohol?”
“Obviously alcohol!” Zu An said without hesitation.
“That is what I assumed as well. Anyone who can compose such an impassioned song as ‘The Smiling, Proud Wanderer’ is naturally a heroic man who loves alcohol.” Qiu Honglei picked up the pot and poured a cup for him.
Out of worry that her long sleeves would touch the food on the table, she gently pushed them up, revealing beautiful arms that were even finer than white jade.
Zu An couldn’t help but sigh in admiration. Some people really were blessed at birth. Every single part of her body is a work of art.
“That’s actually not the reason why I drink. I just want an excuse to justify any reckless actions after I drink.”
Qiu Honglei’s smile froze momentarily, but she quickly recovered. “If you had said that before, I would have definitely thought of young master as a pervert. I might even have chased you out immediately.”
“What made you change your mind?” Zu An asked in curiosity.
“Anyone who can write such a song is definitely a righteous and valiant knight who is richly talented. I’m sure that your vulgar and unrestrained actions are merely a form of camouflage.” Qiu Honglei raised her cup with a smile. “I am really happy that music has brought young master and I closer together in friendship. This humble girl offers the young master a toast.”
Smelling the fragrance filling the air, Zu An couldn’t help but sigh. “Who says those who have talent can’t be perverts?”
Ji Dengtu’s vulgar smile appeared in his head. Revolted, he quickly shoved that image out of his head. “Also, that song isn’t my work. I am only sharing in the achievements of another.”
A wave of homesickness struck him. He worried that he might never be able to return to his previous world again, and grew dejected. Raising his cup, he drained it in one go.
Qiu Honglei lowered her cup, leaving behind an imprint of her lips on the rim. “The young master is too modest. Even though Honglei is foolish, I am familiar with all sorts of songs. This is the first time I’ve heard of this ‘Smiling, Proud Wanderer’. If it wasn’t written by young master, who else could it have been written by?”
Zu An seemed on the verge of saying something, but hesitated. He gave up the thought of explaining what was going on. After all, there was no way he couldn’t tell her that he transmigrated here, right?
There really is something wrong with this world! Whenever I speak the truth, no one believes me, but they don’t question my lies at all!
To hell with it!
“May I ask young master a question?” Qiu Honglei looked calmly at him with her beautiful eyes.
“Please, don’t keep calling me young master. Just call me Ah Zu in the future,” Zu An replied. “What do you want to ask me?”
Qiu Honglei said, “To be honest, I have already heard quite a few rumors about young master. None of them were too good.”
“Perhaps you have heard that I am just a piece of trash? You don’t need to worry about my feelings.” Zu An laughed in a completely unconcerned manner. “I’ve already gotten used to it.”
Qiu Honglei’s face tinged with red. She studied him curiously. “It was only today that I discovered that young master is actually an extremely outstanding man. Why do you normally… treat this entire world like a game?”
She really couldn’t find the right words to portray how Zu An carried himself. The word ‘lowly’ seemed quite fitting, but that was too indecent. How could she say that in such a setting?
“I’m not pretending, though. That’s the sort of person I am,” Zu An said in a carefree manner.
Qiu Honglei refused to believe him. “It seems like young master still does not treat me as one of his own,” she said with a hurt expression.
Zu An cursed silently. Are we husband and wife or something? We haven’t even gone to bed yet, and you have the nerve to say this?
Noticing his silence, Qiu Honglei probed further. “Is the young master concerned that being too outstanding might instead make the Chu clan uneasy?”
Zu An stared blankly. “Why would the Chu clan feel uneasy about that?”
Qiu Honglei smiled slightly. “Brightmoon Duke currently has two daughters and a son. The son is serving in the capital as a… he is studying, while his second daughter is publicly known as…
“Publicly known as a brat that throws uncontrollable tantrums. There’s no way she could manage the matters of the Chu clan.”
Zu An burst out laughing inside. You were going to say that she was publicly known as a straw bag idiot, weren’t you? It’s a phrase that you’re so used to saying, you almost blurted it out.
Honestly though, that young lass and I actually make a good duo. Straw bag and trash, haha~
The merest hint of awkwardness flickered across Qiu Honglei’s expression. She continued, “Close to half of the Chu clan’s affairs are managed by first miss Chu. First miss Chu is very pretty and extremely talented. She is also the Chu clan’s most suitable heir. Unfortunately, she is also a woman.
“That’s where the situation with her husband becomes a little awkward. If he is too competent, he might just take over the Chu clan like a turtledove seizing the nest of a magpie.
“That is why first miss Chu would go out of her way to choose a… choose someone like you without any notable background. On the surface, it seemed like they picked someone who didn’t have a single redeeming quality as her husband. I thought that I had guessed first miss Chu’s intentions correctly. However, after meeting young master today, I have come to realize that I was gravely mistaken.
“Did you deliberately deceive young miss Chu, or did the young miss choose you as her husband because she knew about you right from the start?”
Zu An gently swirled the cup in his hands, casually leaning against the wall of the cabin. His expression grew hard to read. “This doesn’t seem like something a courtesan should be concerned with, does it? Just who exactly are you?”
1. The term that Zu An uses to address the maid is xiao jie jie (小姐姐) , which is a common way of addressing young women in modern-day society. It is not perverted or disgusting, but rather a casual way of addressing someone. This is also true for young men, who would be called xiao ge ge (小哥哥).