Chapter 648: Completely Played

The government brothel wasn’t a single building, but made up of several courtyards and residences. Ordinary girls would conduct business in the same building, but every courtesan queen had their own private place.

The government brothel had more than one courtesan queen, and it was easy to imagine just how large the place was.

“Her residence has been reserved?” Zu An frowned. He hadn’t expected to run into such an issue.

He tossed the staff member a silver piece. “Help me think of something. It wasn’t easy for me to come all this way.”

He had to investigate Cheng Gang and that courtesan queen to see if he could glean any useful information. What was going on?

The staff member’s eyes lit up when he saw the silver piece. He instantly flashed Zu An a huge smile. “Young master, please enter. Let me see if Lady Shuangyue can make any accommodations.”

Zu An entered the estate. The worker escorted him through the compound, taking several turns, before they arrived at a small courtyard. It was rather refined, without being overly gaudy. It didn’t feel like part of a brothel, but had the air of a young maiden’s chambers.

Zu An was offered some tea and asked to wait in the courtyard outside, while the worker went in to make a report.

Shuangyue was in front of a mirror, dressing and grooming herself. Beside her was another woman, whose seductive figure and charming expression were enough to sway even the hearts of other women.

“Shuangyue, you’re growing prettier and prettier,” said the woman lying on her side, an enchanting smile on her face. Her voice was so soothing that it could melt bones.

The courtesan queen who sat in front of the mirror rolled her eyes. “Miss, could you stop making fun of me? How can my looks compare to yours? These men in the capital are rather ignorant of the rest of the world. If they ever visited Brightmoon City and met you, they would never touch a courtesan queen like me again.”

The smile on the other woman’s face grew wider. “Come on. There’s no need to demean yourself like that. I can’t compare with you in many ways. For example, you’re a catgirl. Few men can resist that sort of charm.”

The courtesan queen was startled. “Ah, you’re making fun of me!”

As the two of them were chatting, there was a knock on the door, and a staff member appeared to relay a message. “My Lady, there’s a young master outside who wishes to meet you.”

The courtesan queen’s expression darkened. “Are you stupid? I’ve already been reserved by young master Cheng for the whole night. How dare you still bring someone in? Did that man bribe you?”

The worker was full of apology. “I dared not! I will immediately send this young master away.” He ran off.

The woman on the bed propped herself up. She stretched her body lazily, accentuating her stunning curves. “See? There are so many men chasing after you. Isn’t your charm apparent?”

The courtesan queen scoffed. “They’re all ugly fellows.”

“All right, all right. I won’t tease you anymore.” The other woman put away her smile. “By the way, Cheng Gang seems to have invited some important people over today. If I’m not mistaken, they’re all part of King Qi’s faction. Keep your ears open and pay attention to whatever they discuss.”

The courtesan queen grunted in acknowledgment. “I’ve gained his utmost trust over these past few days. He won’t disappoint me.”

“That’s good. I’m going out for some fresh air.” The other woman got to her feet.

The courtesan queen smiled. “Please be careful. If these awful men around here catch a glimpse of you, they'll go crazy.”

“You’re growing more courageous by the day. You’re even teasing me now.” With a snort, the woman left through a side door.

Zu An couldn’t help but frown at the staff member’s response.

“Why don’t I introduce another courtesan queen to the young master?” asked the staff member. “I promise she’ll be as good as Lady Shuangyue.”

He didn’t dare offend someone who was this liberal with his money. Besides, since he’d already taken this young master’s money, he had to make sure he was taken care of.

“There’s no need,” replied Zu An with a shake of his head. He wondered if he should just sneak in later. He could control the small creatures around him, after all. As long as he wasn’t too far away, he should be able to eavesdrop on Cheng Gang and the courtesan queen.

He idly looked up at the second floor, where the courtesan queen was, and just happened to see a beautiful figure emerge.

When she noticed that a boorish man was eyeing her, the woman felt a flash of displeasure, but it was replaced by a brilliant smile when she recognized who it was.

Zu An smiled in return. “Go attend to your duties,” he told the staff member “I’ll sit here a while longer then take my leave.”

That worker assumed that Zu An was reluctant to part with Shuangyue, and wanted to sit here to admire the other party. He secretly sneered disdainfully, but still flashed Zu An a flattering smile. “As you wish, young master.”

He left quickly, afraid that the young master would demand his silver piece back.

The figure from the second floor had already arrived at Zu An’s side, accompanied by a fragrant breeze. “Why did you come here?”

Zu An looked at her strangely as well. “What are you doing here? Don’t tell me that you’re the courtesan queen?”

This beautiful woman was none other than Qiu Honglei. She seemed even more stunning under the warm light from the brothel’s lanterns.

For some reason, though, Zu An felt extremely unhappy inside.

Qiu Honglei was a clever woman. She immediately figured out what Zu An was feeling, and smiled at him teasingly. “Are you jealous?” 

Zu An snorted in return. “I’ve heard that the courtesan queen and the young master of the Cheng clan are on extremely good terms. Did I come at a bad time?”

Qiu Honglei grabbed his arm. “Don’t worry. That courtesan queen isn’t me.”

The feeling of her arm around his was enough to make the tension drain out of him, and his displeasure faded along with it.

Qiu Honglei’s eyes flickered about. “Were you the one who bribed that staff member just now?”

Zu An’s smile froze. So much for his reputation. “Of course not,” he denied it was a quick cough. “Am I the sort who would spend money to meet with a courtesan queen?”

Qiu Honglei giggled, but did not expose his lie. She pulled him towards the residence. “It’s easy if you want to meet the courtesan queen. I’ll bring you to her.”

Zu An was stunned. “You know her?”

“Not only do I know her, you do too,” Qiu Honglei said with a laugh.

Zu An was confused. When he entered the room, though, he saw a familiar figure.

“Miss, why did you come back so… Huh? Young master Zu?” The courtesan queen was completely shocked.

Zu An’s eyelids twitched. “So this is Lady Leng.”

This courtesan queen was none other than Qiu Honglei’s maid in the Immortal Abode, the catgirl Leng Shuangyue!

Ah, what the heck… If I’d known, I wouldn’t have spent all that silver.

Leng Shuangyue smiled. “You still remember my name, young master.”

“Why are you guys here?” asked Zu An curiously.

Leng Shuangyue was about to say something, but hesitated. She subconsciously looked to Qiu Honglei. Qiu Honglei said, “It’s fine, he’s one of us. This is the capital city branch of our Holy Sect!”

Leng Shuangyue was taken aback. The Lady Saint really trusted this man, to divulge such a high level secret to him.

Zu An had a strange look on his face. “You guys managed to extend your reach all the way to the government brothel? That’s rather formidable!”

The government brothel was different from a regular one. This facility was run by the state. Every girl who worked here had their background checked, and their identities were well-documented, yet the Devil Sect had managed to extend their influence all the way into this place. That was a rather difficult feat to achieve.

Qiu Honglei sneered. “As long as there are men involved, there’s nothing we cannot deal with.”

Zu An was again reminded of the seductive power of the charm that she cultivated, and it was likely that other women in the sect were trained in this as well. Ordinary men would never be able to resist such charms.

“But isn’t a place like the government brothel a bit too foul? Don’t the people of your Holy Sect consider this too great of a sacrifice?” said Zu An, frowning.

Qiu Honglei made him sit on a chair. “I know what you’re worried about, but our sect has a special department, made up of individuals who specialize in this area. The method they cultivate is a special one, and mingling between the sexes is actually beneficial towards their cultivation.”

Zu An’s gaze subconsciously shifted to the catgirl. Is this the so-called sexual art?

Qiu Honglei said in annoyance, “What are you looking at her like that for? She’s not sleeping with any guests, and is still a virgin. If you fancy her, though, I can have her take care of you.”

“Miss!” The catgirl exclaimed, stomping her feet. She was clearly embarrassed and distressed.

Zu An grew curious. “Is Cheng Gang an idiot, then? I’ve heard that he’s rather enamored with her. Has he not reaped any benefits from this arrangement?”

Qiu Honglei explained, “The charm technique that our sect practices can place anyone within an illusion. Even though Shuangyue isn’t able to do so on her own, she can put Cheng Gang into an illusion with the help of some medicines, where he will… release himself.”

It all became clear to Zu An. Cheng Gang was being completely played.

Just then, a servant girl knocked on the door. “Miss, young master Cheng’s group has arrived.”

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