Chapter 603: A Man Among Men

Everyone inside the palace was stunned.

Little Gui, who was trembling in the corner, almost forgot his fear.

Little Zhuo was staring incredulously as well.

This guy really is daring! He even dares to hug the empress! His Majesty is the only one in this world who can hold her, and yet you dare to put your hands on her?

They began to regret accepting the pearl that Zu An had given them. They did not know if they would be caught up in the aftermath once this matter was looked into.

Both of them looked at Zu An pitifully. Even if this fellow was lucky enough to avoid death, he would most likely become one of them. When that happened, should they call him little Zu, or little An?

Zu An was obviously stunned as well. He had planned to ride this out without having to step in, watching from the sidelines as the empress showed off her skills. Perhaps he would cheer her on a bit.

Now, though, everything had been flipped on its head. The tremendously powerful empress was suddenly spent, and then the situation had been completely reversed!

Sis, can’t you just run the other way? Why the hell are you coming towards me?

You’re even jumping straight into my arms… Wow, this body is really soft, and she has a really good bottom… Ahem, that's not important right now. If I hold her like this, is it considered skinship?

Will the empress be able to accept this? Will the other officials accuse me of misconduct?

Will my punishment be execution, or castration?

His legs closed subconsciously. If he had known that this would happen, he would have let her fall.

He’d only just dealt with the matter regarding the Phoenix Nirvana Sutra, yet he somehow managed to provoke the emperor again. Should he burn some incense to chase away the bad luck?

But His Majesty put on my Hat of Forgiveness, didn’t he? He probably shouldn’t have it out for me… 

His head was once again filled with nonsense.

The empress hadn’t expected to fall into the embrace of another man. Her alluring face reddened slightly, either from shame or from her injuries. However, she was a mature woman, and not an innocent young lady. She quickly composed herself and yelled at him, “What are you staring at? The assailants are coming!”

Zu An snapped out of his daze. It wasn’t just the assassins who had been going after the empress. The two assassins that he’d faced off against also brandished their swords.

What a pain in the ass. For a split second, he considered throwing the empress at them.

However, that would certainly spell his doom. He might still survive if he saved the empress’ life.

I just want to do my job without any drama. Is that so hard?

The only thing he could do was to run, all the while holding onto the empress and cursing. These assassins were all experts, while he was carrying someone, with his arms completely occupied. How was he even supposed to fight?

The empress wanted to say something to help him avoid these attacks. After all, even though she was wounded, she could still see. Unexpectedly, Zu An’s figure twisted a few times before she could open her mouth, leaving several afterimages behind and managing to avoid the incoming attacks with ease.

This movement technique… it looks like Mi Lianying’s Sunflower Phantasm!

No, even though it’s similar, it’s much more profound. When she noticed that he was about to run outside, she quickly stopped him. “Don’t run outside!”

Zu An stopped and looked at her in confusion. Why the hell not?

The empress blushed and said quietly, “If you appear in front of everyone while carrying me, I won’t be able to protect you from the consequences even if I wanted to…”

Zu An suddenly understood what she was saying. Right now, only a few people had seen what was going on. As long as the empress didn’t bring it up, the situation would be resolved easily.

Outside, however, there would be countless pairs of eyes watching. They couldn’t cover this matter up even if they wanted to. At that point, even if both the empress and emperor did not pursue the matter further, the righteous factions within the court and the imperial censors would certainly not let him off the hook. When that happened, the emperor would have no choice but to execute him.

Zu An felt a chill run up his neck. He quickly dodged backwards and hid behind the door that wasn’t broken, making sure that no one outside could see him.

Another thought struck him. “Can’t I just put you down?”

He was about to drop her when the empress quickly grabbed his hand. “No! I can’t move. I’m not in a good condition.”

Zu An stared at her.

Sis, what the hell?

Huh? Why is there something soft on my arm?

He looked at his arm, and expression became even more grave. Yup, there’s no way the emperor is going to let me go.

The assassins were about to catch up to him again.

Zu An was incredibly pissed. It’s all these guys’ fault!

“Piss off!” he yelled at them.

He summoned Snow Phoenix, sending out a blast of frost. The incoming assailants' eyes widened in shock, and their movements gradually slowed to a stop.

A layer of frost could be seen covering their clothes. In moments, they were turned into ice sculptures.

Little Gui and little Zhuo felt as though their eyes were about to pop out of their sockets. Why is this guy so strong? Was he really the same guy that just bribed them?

The empress’ eyes widened too. She had just seen him use that strange movement technique and she also knew that he had cultivated the Phoenix Nirvana Sutra, so she knew that his cultivation should be rather high. However, she never expected that he could be this strong!

He dealt with the assassins just like that?

What sort of ability was that? It seems slightly similar to the Chu clan’s ‘Snowflake Sword’.

This was precisely why Zu An had chosen to use this technique. He had many trump cards that he did not wish to reveal. The Snow Phoenix indeed had similar properties to Chu Chuyan’s ‘Snowflake Sword’, and he was confident that no one would grow suspicious if he used it.

The empress’ mind was on another topic. If this fellow was so strong, why did he pretend to be in danger while battling two assassins? I was dying over there, yet you were loafing on the job?

You have successfully trolled Liu Ning for 55… 55… 55…

Zu An almost dropped this woman when he saw the incoming Rage points. What the hell is wrong with you? Why would you get angry at me for saving you?

Fortunately, the amount was small, indicating that the situation could still be redeemed.

He coughed and said, “Empress, where do we go now?”

The empress bit her lip. “Carry me to the inner room.”

“Alright.” Since they couldn’t go outside, he would let her rest inside for now.

The empress frowned as they passed little Gui and little Zhuo.

Zu An knew that she was thinking about killing them. Even though she was gentle by nature, as empress, she was often placed in situations where she had no choice.

With a sigh, he said, “These two eunuchs treated me quite well on my way here.”

He did not say that they were his friends, since that would only harm their cause.

He had to express his intent more tactfully.

The empress obviously understood his plea. He had just saved her life as well, and she owed him that much. As such, she stared at the two lesser eunuchs coldly and said, “If I hear a word about what happened today, your families’ lives are forfeit.”

“This servant doesn’t dare!” The two lesser eunuchs pounded their heads against the ground, and their bodies began to tremble even more violently.

The empress nodded in satisfaction. “My eunuchs have just been killed. The two of you will be my personal servants from now on.”

Little Gui and little Zhuo were momentarily stunned, then joy overwhelmed them. “Thank you, Your Highness, for your grace!”

Before this moment, they had only been two lesser eunuchs with no status within the Palace of Peace. Now, they had been elevated to the empress’ personal eunuchs! Such a rise in status was a glorious gift that they had never dared to even dream about.

They looked at Zu An gratefully. They knew that they had not only been saved, but also shown such favor, all because of this man.

It had all started out as nothing more than a friendly greeting. They never expected him to actually be this loyal.

Such an act is worthy of the man who dares to even hold the empress in his arms! This is a man among men! Following him in the future is definitely the right choice!

Zu An wasn’t to know that these two eunuchs wanted to set up a shrine for him in their homes right at that moment. He carried the empress into the inner room. The smell of the precious incense inside soothed his mind. It was truly a nice feeling.

The empress pointed at the phoenix couch that To one side of the room. “Take me to bed.”

Zu An was so shocked he almost dropped her.

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