Chapter 607: Exposed

Having to part with Snow left Zu An with a heavy heart. He still had many things that he wanted to say to her. At the very least, he wanted to see her off.

Unfortunately, the message transmitted to his golden token caused his expression to immediately change.

The one sending this message was Zhuxie Chixin!

Besides serving as a proof of identity, the Embroidered Envoy token also served as a communications device. It was similar to the walkie-talkies of police officers, which could easily convey orders from superiors.

Of course, this function would only be used for major emergencies.

Furthermore, if an envoy did not respond immediately, and was caught slacking on the job, the formation on the golden token could record everything, such as the distance from the emergency site and other relevant information. Reward and blame would be properly apportioned amongst the Embroidered Envoy, depending on the outcome.

Zhuxie Chixin had told him of all this when he first became an Embroidered Envoy. Fortunately, the golden token only recorded distance and other such data, but couldn’t record videos like a security camera. If it could, he would already be exposed.

This was to be expected, though, since every single one of the Embroidered Envoy was individually outstanding. Pride often grew with competence. Which one of them would tolerate having a security camera on them that recorded every action?

Having a token with communication capabilities that only recorded basic information for the apportioning of rewards and punishments was the best compromise.

“What’s wrong?” Qiao Xueying asked. She could sense that something was amiss.

Zu An explained what had just happened as he wondered about what was going on. There had just been a bunch of assassins in the empress’ palace. Why would there suddenly be assassins in the crown prince’s eastern palace as well?

Did all of the guards decide to go on vacation at the same time?

Also, wasn’t the emperor the number one expert in the world? His divine senses are rumored to cover the entire imperial palace. Why wasn’t he taking action, even when something so serious had happened?

Snow voiced her surprise. “I didn’t hear anything about the Shadow Group having another operation! Besides, all of our elites should have been involved in the attack on the empress. I don’t think even a group as powerful as the Shadow Group could attack the eastern palace simultaneously.”

Zu An came to the only logical conclusion. “Then it’s probably another power.”

Several things still weren’t clear, though. Weren’t these two powers too well-coordinated? The guards had all been drawn to the Palace of Peace, then dispersed to pursue Shadow Group’s retreating assassins, after which, there was yet another attack on the eastern palace. There was no way the guards would be able to make it in time. No wonder Zhuxie Chixin had ordered the Embroidered Envoy to provide aid as quickly as possible.

Wait, I haven’t seen Zhuxie Chixin around either.

Unfortunately, the token only allowed for one-way communication, and was used only to distribute orders.

Qiao Xueying said, “Ah Zu, you should go. If you don’t, you might get into trouble when they review the situation.”

Zu An hesitated. “That means I won’t be able to see you off.”

Qiao Xueying smiled. “You’ve already accompanied me so far outside the palace. I’m more than happy.” 

Zu An took the young woman into his arms, feeling her delicate body pressed up against his. “Snow, I will surely visit you.”

Qiao Xueying beamed, and her voice became incredibly sweet. “All right, then. I’ll be waiting for you.”

After he left her, Zu An put on his mask and returned to the palace, hurrying towards the eastern palace.

Annoyed by the summons, he had made up his mind. Since they forced him and Snow to part ways, he would only do the bare minimum to help out.

Any faction that could attempt an assassination on the crown prince had to  wield a terrifying power. He had no interest in risking his life to protect a fool that he had only met twice.

He hadn’t succeeded in his plan to slack off at the Palace of Peace. This time, he was definitely going to learn from that experience.

However, he did not waste any time along the way. The token recorded his position constantly, so if he moved too slowly, it would come back to bite him.

By the time he reached the eastern palace, it had been turned into a slaughterhouse.

The ground was littered with the corpses of guards and black-clad assassins, and the ground was covered in rivers of blood.

The eastern palace guards were clearly at the point of collapse. Only a single middle-aged man and a few guards were hanging on.

Judging from his uniform, this was likely the crown prince’s lesser tutor, the eighth-ranked Cao Hou.

King Qi was the crown prince’s great tutor, but given his status, there was no way he would continuously stay by the crown prince’s side to serve as his teacher.

This lesser tutor was the crown prince’s real tutor.

Zu An had been summoned to the Palace of Peace, and had not had the chance to formally meet this man.

There was a sense of dignity about this man, perhaps because of his long service as the crown prince’s tutor. His attacks were also strong and disciplined, and he beat away the assassins’ best efforts.

Zu An was impressed. As expected of an eighth-ranked cultivator! 

They were heavily outnumbered, though. Despite his individual strength, he was just barely holding on.

Zu An looked around, and saw that even the crown princess was fighting, a sword in her hand.

The crown princess was already pretty, with a tall and slender build. As she fought, her dress fluttered about her, and she looked just like a goddess in a painting.

Zu An silently evaluated her. She’s only slightly behind my Chuyan.

She was protecting the crown prince, who cowered behind her, curled up in a ball and trembling. Even though he had been bestowed all manner of treasures from birth, and he was stronger than an ordinary person, he lacked the courage to help his own wife.

He was flanked by two eunuchs. They were none other than little Xu and little He, one wielding a wooden stool, and the other a broom. They were also quaking with fear, their eyes darting desperately about.

Zu An was speechless. Are you guys kidding me? Grab a damned blade or something! There are corpses everywhere. Any random sword would be better than what you’re holding!

The crown princess’ cultivation seemed to be around the fifth or sixth rank. She would have been considered a rather formidable cultivator in the outside world. Most of the assassins were also around this level.

Despite this, she was a crown princess, used to living a pampered life. She didn’t have much actual martial experience.

She was almost injured several times, but was saved by a petite figure who was weaving and darting around her.

Bixie Swordplay?

Zu An was momentarily surprised, but he quickly realized that it only looked slightly similar.

He had already identified this person. It was the crown princess’ personal maid, Rong Mo. Her cultivation was much higher than the crown princess’. Each time she moved, she left a wound on her opponent.

Most shocking of all was her weapon. It wasn’t a blade or a sword, but a fine embroidery needle!

She doesn’t seem like Invincible East. She seems more like…[1]

He pondered this at length, and finally found a close-fitting description. This was just like how Granny Rong stabbed Xia Ziwei in 'My Fair Princess'!

She really does bear resemblance to that assassin, Granny Rong!

Zu An really couldn’t associate this petite maid with the wrinkled face of Granny Rong.

No, wait. Her cultivation seems to be around the sixth or seventh rank! Those with Chu Chuyan and Pei Mianman’s aptitude had to have been given a plethora of opportunities in order to rise to the sixth rank. How did this maid do it? How is her cultivation this high?

He quickly came to a conclusion. She was definitely not as young as she looked. In fact, she might actually already be a granny.

A number of embroidered envoys had reached the eastern palace as well. They had clearly been nearby, and rushed over when they received the summons.

Unfortunately, almost all of them had bronze tokens, and there was only a single silver-token envoy. Even though his cultivation was decent, he wasn’t able to turn the tide, and could only alleviate some of the pressure on the crown prince’s entourage.

Zu An made sure that his mask was on properly. He figured he could probably get away with just dealing with one or two assassins. However, his appearance did not escape either side. When they saw that another embroidered envoy had shown up, the combatants on both sides frowned, but did not seem to care. These embroidered envoys were not individually strong, and they wouldn’t be carrying the emperor’s powerful decrees if they weren’t completing a task for the emperor. The assassins were not cowed by his presence.

However, several of the embroidered envoys grew excited when they saw Zu An. “It’s a golden token lord! We’re saved!”

At this sudden exclamation, everyone turned to look in Zu An’s direction. Several individuals, whose cultivations were clearly much higher than the rest, rushed straight at him.

Zu An could barely hold back his rage.

Motherfucker! I even put away my damned golden token in order to blend in. How the hell did they still recognize me?!



1. Invincible East is a character from The Smiling, Proud Wanderer.

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