After discussing several more details, Fu Shuo left to make his preparations.
He advised Pei Mianman to inspect the three thousand elite troops he’d brought over from the vassal state to prepare them for their upcoming battle.
Zu An wanted to go as well, but Fu Shuo reminded him that he had to remain within the palace, as there were many people out for his life.
Pei Mianman gave him a reassuring look. “Ah Zu, don’t worry. I will be careful and act according to the situation.”
It was true that she had been an extraordinary woman and a brilliant genius even before he’d met her. Zu An acknowledged that his worry might indeed be a little excessive.
They exchanged a few more words, and then he let her go.
Zu An chuckled when he saw how overcome with emotion Fu Shuo was when he expressed his trust in him. If he hadn’t had foreknowledge of Fu Shuo—that he was extremely loyal to Wu Ding, and even one of the great ancient sages—he might still have been too worried to let Pei Mianman go off alone.
It was easy for him to picture how things went for the others who had attempted this trial. They would definitely have been on edge after entering this unfamiliar world. When met with Fu Shuo’s advice to split up, they would probably have suspected him, and resorted to either interrogating him or even outright refusing his advice. The male participant might even have insisted on going along as well. All of these would inevitably have led to a bad end.
Of course, knowledge of history wasn’t absolutely essential for this trial. Even those who were completely ignorant of it could tell from their conversation, and the situation they were in, that Fu Shuo and Wu Ding shared a special relationship. However, it was difficult for others to gain enough information within a brief amount of time, which made it that much harder.
No wonder all those who attempted this trial before failed! To be honest, I don’t even think they could have made it past this first obstacle.
Zu An’s imagination began to run wild. He had already begun to treat this trial as an open world game. All sorts of possibilities and paths began to appear in his mind.
If this Fu Shuo was sent to help the trial participants, there would definitely be an antagonist as well…
When Zu An opened the door, he noticed the same maid standing outside the door. A thought occurred to him, and he called her over to make a request.
“I greet the great king and queen.” The maid knelt on the ground, her body shaking slightly. She was clearly still frightened by Zu An’s earlier threats, and had not fully recovered yet. She was clueless as to why he would suddenly call her over.
Zu An carefully looked this young lady over. He had to admit that even though she wasn’t exceptionally beautiful, she was rather delicate and pretty, especially with those long and slender legs that were completely exposed. Her fair and glowing skin also gave off a wild and primitive sort of beauty.
“What was your name again?”
The maid stiffened. The king has even forgotten my name! However, she didn’t dare question him again, and quickly replied, “This servant’s name is Xiao Tuo.”
“Xiao Tuo?” Zu An thought it a rather strange name, but then again, names in these ancient periods were all quite weird. Even the names of the Shang monarchs seemed rather sloppy, so he didn’t worry too much about it. “Xiao Tuo, where are you from?”
Pei Mianman, who was already several steps away, had a strange look on her face. She sent him a ki transmission. “Ah Zu, don’t you know the situation we’re in right now? How can you still be in the mood to play around with this girl?”
Zu An smiled. “What, are you jealous?” he replied.
Pei Mianman sniffed disdainfully. “Whatever. You’re the king, so play around if you want. But please remember that this is a trial, so don’t forget your real objective.”
As someone from a great clan, she clearly didn’t mind her man having some fun on the side. She was only worried that it would somehow affect the results of this trial.
“Don’t worry, I know what I’m doing. Something’s not right with this maid,” Zu An replied.
A look of surprise flashed across Pei Mianman’s eyes. She subconsciously glanced at that servant’s lovely and pitiful appearance, but couldn’t see what the issue was.
Of course, she knew that Zu An wouldn’t say such a thing for no reason. Now that she knew he wasn’t about to play around, she warned him once more to be careful, then left with Fu Shuo.
The maid replied with a gentle voice, “I am from the Tuo State.”
“The Tuo State?” Zu An froze for a moment. He had never heard of this country before. Of course, there were many small countries in these ancient periods that had long been erased by the flow of time.
He reached out a hand to help her to her feet. Still holding onto her hand, he led her to a table off to the side. “Where is the Tuo State? Can you mark it out for me on the map?”
The maid blushed, clearly embarrassed that a man was holding her hand.
“Tuo State is to the southeast of the Shang State,” She hurriedly replied. “It’s around here.”
Using this chance to free her hand, she drew a circle on the map he had drawn out earlier.
Zu An’s smile grew wider, and he wrapped his arm around her shoulder like a pervert. “Xiao Tuo, please tell me a little about your homeland’s sights and customs.”
Are you joking? How could a normal maid possibly know how to use a map?
She was able to accurately pinpoint the position of the Tuo State from just a casual look, which meant that she had special training in this field.
He’d deliberately held her hand earlier and put on that perverted act in order to throw her off, hoping her nervousness would lead her to subconsciously reveal gaps in her act.
This wasn’t the only hole in her façade. As a maid, obtaining the favor of a monarch was an extraordinary opportunity, yet her body had stiffened just now, subconsciously rejecting his touch.
She had even found a reason to throw aside his hand. Even though the reason seemed appropriate, he was already suspicious of her, and this only served to confirm them.
For a woman to resist the touch of a king meant that either she hated the Shang monarch, or that she already had another lover in her heart. Otherwise, she wouldn’t have subconsciously rejected him. Which one was it?
That was why he wanted to carry on the conversation, to see if he could pick up any more clues.
The maid hadn’t expected him to show such indifference towards military affairs, and instead asked about her homeland, while holding her in such an inappropriate manner. What a perverted and incapable ruler.
You have successfully trolled Xiao Tuo for 123… 123… 123…
Zu An felt his certainty growing as he saw the influx of Rage points.
He had to admit that her pure and youthful appearance made for a good cover. She was also the personal maid of the Shang monarch, which meant that the participants of the trial would subconsciously mark her as someone trustworthy.
Those who had come before him had probably asked her many questions from the start, and fallen right into her trap.
The one who designed this trial probably did not expect Pei Mianman and himself to be in no hurry to look for clues, but romp around in bed instead…
Since they didn’t have the time to ask the maid about anything else before Fu Shuo’s arrival, they naturally hadn’t been misguided by whatever misinformation she might have provided.
Zu An’s face took on a strange expression. I guess being a pervert isn’t so bad sometimes.
This maid began to answer his question, giving him some information on the Tuo State while thinking about how she was going to escape from his clutches.
Zu An nodded as he listened. “It sounds like quite a beautiful place, but that’s to be expected. How could the Tuo State be a bad place if it managed to produce a charming girl like you?”
When did women from ancient times ever experience such a manner of flirtation? Even though she constantly reminded herself that this was a perverted and incapable ruler, she still couldn’t help but smile. After all, which girl didn’t like being praised?
“My king, I do not deserve such praise.” The maid bowed respectfully. “This servant must ask to be excused.”
Zu An held onto her to stop her. “Hey, did I say you can go? Keep me company for a while longer. My heart is distraught with anxiety right now.”
Are you kidding me? How could he let her go and give her a chance to release any information?
He hadn’t noticed this about her earlier, which was why he hadn’t excluded her from his conversation with Fu Shuo and Pei Mianman. Even though there was a door between them, it wasn’t too difficult for her to eavesdrop if she wanted to.
It would be disastrous if she’d overheard their plans and leaked them out.
Only after Fu Shuo finished his preparations and Pei Mianman set out to battle would the situation stabilize. When that happened, he could let her go without worrying about any leaks.
But how was he supposed to keep her here? Did he really have to play out the role of a perverted and incapable ruler?Previous Chapter Next Chapter