Chapter 571, Part I: The Shadow Group

Even though this sequence of events took a while to describe, not much time had passed at all.

Just a moment ago, Chu Youzhao’s eyes had widened in astonishment. She never expected her notorious trash of a brother-in-law to be so formidable! The assassins were clearly highly-rated killers, yet they had been dispatched so easily.

Did I get out on the wrong side of the bed today?

Am I dreaming? Or is all this an illusion?

Hmph! Why would I ever dream of this stupid guy being so strong...

Her thoughts had been all over the place when she was captured by the assassin a split second later.

Her face turned deathly pale when she felt the chill of the blade against her neck. She froze immediately, not daring to move a muscle.

Zu An gave the two of them a look. He chuckled and said, “Friend? Didn’t you see him running at me with a sword just a moment ago? Feel free to kill my enemy for me! Why would you use him to threaten me? Are all assassins so dumb these days?”

Despite the confidence in his voice, he was rather flustered inside. It should have been crawling with guards outside! It would be one thing for Chu Youzhao to enter, since she had her grandfather’s command token, but how the hell did all these assassins get in? Moreover, it had been some time since the assassins first broke in, yet none of the guards had reacted.

Zu An listened closely, trying to figure out what was happening outside. A ruckus was going on outside as well, and there was the sound of fighting and killing. Clearly, another party was distracting the guards, which allowed these assassins to approach him.

Of course, none of them could have expected that, not only did their assassins fail to kill him, they had been killed instead.

He was always confused when reading fiction novels of his previous world. Why did the villains always seem so dumb? They would always dispatch henchmen that were only a single rank higher to eliminate the main character, and all of them would be killed by their target instead. Wouldn’t it go much more smoothly if they dispatched someone who was several ranks higher instead?

After his experiences in this world, however, he was beginning to understand why.

Fifth rank and sixth rank cultivators were already considered rather outstanding, while those seventh rank and higher were already big shots. Why would they bother dealing with some nobody?

Even if the villains really did dispatch powerful cultivators, none of them would be happy about it. They would be annoyed to have to personally deal with such petty things. They had more than enough on their plate already.

At their level, they had enemies on their own level to deal with, which was more than enough trouble already. 

Mosquito Daoist and Cash Warrior hadn’t been sent to deal with him, but for his escorts, who had been ranked as highly as them.

Right now, the guards outside were holding back the main force, and there was no way that the ones who made it past would be highly-ranked big shots.

So far, he had only revealed himself to be at the fifth rank. Even though he had showcased all sorts of outstanding skills, four sixth-rank assassins would surely have been enough, with room to spare. There was no way they could have known that he had absorbed Mosquito Daoist’s cultivation and grown much stronger.

The ninja was stupefied when he heard what Zu An said. Thinking back to when he first entered, it did seem like this person really had wanted to kill Zu An.

What the hell is a measly fourth rank doing here, though? Which idiot faction sent this fool?

Chu Youzhao was quivering with fury. She was angry at herself for even worrying for this stupid man! If she had known that this would happen, she would have wished death upon him instead!

You have successfully trolled Chu Youzhao for 233… 233… 233…

She took a deep breath, and then said coldly, “I am the grandson of the Vanguard General Qin Zheng and the daughter of Brightmoon Duke, of the Chu clan! I doubt whichever power backing you can suffer the consequences if something were to happen to me. Let me go, and I’m willing to forget all of this!”

Zu An couldn’t help but curse. “You bloody idiot!”

Chu Youzhao glowered at him. I don’t care if you’re not going to do anything to help me, but what’s wrong with me trying to save myself? You even dare to curse me? Hmph! I’m definitely going to tell grandfather and big sis about this. They’ll see this guy’s real and ugly side!

She fully expected to frighten the ninja assassin. However, he roared with laughter instead. “As long as we’re paid enough, we’re even willing to assassinate the royal family. Who cares about a measly Qin or Chu clan?”

Chu Youzhao was stunned. She did not expect the assassin to look down on even the Qin and Chu clans! Just how strong was the power backing him?

The ninja turned to Zu An and said, “I was almost fooled by you earlier. You are the brother-in-law of this brat, so of course you care about his safety.”

Zu An was completely speechless. What was he supposed to do when he had a monkey for a teammate? Despite this, he still tried his best to look indifferent, “Everyone knows that my marriage has already been annulled, so he’s nothing to me. Isn’t it rather laughable for you to use a stranger to threaten me?”

“Shut up!” That ninja snorted. He tightened his grip around his blade, eliciting a cry of alarm from Chu Youzhao. A bright line of blood appeared along her neck. “Drop your sword! If not, I won’t just cut through the skin next time.”

All the color drained from Chu Youzhao’s face. She was still young, after all. Moreover, she had the Qin clan behind her, and so she was used to being surrounded and praised by all those around her. When had she ever experienced anything as dangerous as this?

The assassin couldn’t care less about her credentials. In fact, nobody seemed to care a whit about what she thought. Only now did she realize just how laughable her usual arrogance was.

“Fine, fine, fine! I’ll drop it.” Zu An would never want a random stranger to be caught up in a dangerous situation because of him, let alone Chu Chuyan’s youngest sister.

He lowered the sword to the ground. “Do you want me to put it down horizontally, or vertically?”

Chu Youzhao was stunned. This man really lowered his weapon! Does he really intend to save me?

She wasn’t actually stupid. She quickly realized that he had only said what he said earlier to confuse the assassin and sever any apparent relationship between them. That way, the assassin wouldn’t be able to use her as a bargaining chip.

However, she had taken the initiative to introduce herself, giving this assassin a weakness to exploit.

“Don’t play any tricks, or else this brat dies!” commanded the assassin.

He moved behind Chu Youzhao while saying this. As an experienced assassin, he naturally knew how to guard against sudden attacks.

“Sure, sure, sure. I’ve already put it down.” Zu An frowned. This fellow was being incredibly careful, and was not presenting him with any opportunities.

“Cripple yourself! Do it quickly!” ordered the ninja.

Chu Youzhao panicked. “Don’t agree to that! We’ll both be dead for sure!”

“Shut your mouth!” The ninja flew into a rage, borne out of humiliation. His hand tightened around his sword, as though he would draw blood if she spoke another word.

Zu An laughed and said. “Do you think I’m as stupid as you? Like hell I’ll agree to something like that.”

Chu Youzhao was speechless.

Her face was entirely red from embarrassment. Her worry had been completely pointless. This was just way too shameful.

Ahh!! This guy’s tone really pisses me off!

The ninja knew that his conditions weren’t realistic, so he changed them. “Then break your right arm. That way, you’ll still have some strength, and you’ll still make a full recovery eventually. Meanwhile, I’ll be guaranteed my safety.”

He knew from their previous exchange that this person’s cultivation was far beyond what he could deal with on his own, which was why escape was his top priority. He would be rewarded greatly once he returned with information about Zu An’s true strength.

Zu An frowned. He could follow this line of reasoning as well. How could he just let this man get away with this information?

The ninja’s voice grew softer. “If you refuse, then I’ll risk it all and take down this Chu clan heir down with me. Let’s see how you face the Chu and Qin clans then!”

Someone else suddenly entered the room. “Gui Tian, why hasn’t this area been taken care of yet?”

The newcomer was covered head-to-toe in black, only revealing a pair of eyes. She looked just like the rest of these assassins.

Despite her clothing, her figure was exquisite. This was definitely a woman.

The one called Gui Tian was pleasantly surprised to see the new arrival. “Be careful, this person is definitely not at the fifth rank. He may even be beyond the eighth rank! He’s already killed my other companions!”

This woman had joined them recently, but she was quite skilled. Most importantly, she was attractive as well. He had wanted to get close to her several times, but the right opportunity had never presented itself. Surprisingly, though, he had been offered this chance to fight alongside her. With luck, they might develop some camaraderie, which could perhaps lead to something even better later on.

He eyed her figure greedily. Not even the courtesan queens of the brothels could compare to her. He had been cursing his bad luck earlier on, but now, it didn’t seem quite that bad.

“Oh?” The woman gave Zu An a look of surprise.

Shock ran through Zu An. Why did these eyes seem slightly familiar?

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