Just then, Hong Bao finally reached the spot where she had last felt Nian Hong Fang’s energy. Seeing the people standing in front of the house, Hong Bao raised her brows. “Senior martial brother Qiu? Senior martial brother Jing?”
Both of them turned around, wondering just who this newcomer could be. When Jing Yi saw the person landing in front of them, his eyes widened. “Martial sister Hong Bao?” He never would have thought to see her again! Wasn’t she in the Hei Dian Sect?
Hong Bao nodded excitedly. “Yeah! It’s me! My senior martial brother Liu took me here so we could help the Yun Zou Sect. It seems they are having trouble with some uninvited guests that they need to get rid of. He said that the guests aren’t demons though so I’m not sure how we’re supposed to help.”
Jing Yi’s cheeks flushed and he couldn’t help but glance at Elder Gongxi behind them whose face had darkened considerably. Jing Yi cleared his throat and turned back to Hong Bao. “Maybe this is a misunderstanding? We do have some guests here at the Yun Zou Sect currently and we have our hands full with making sure that all of them are alright and won’t lack anything. Maybe it’s rather that you are supposed to help us with caring for them instead of … getting rid of them as you do with demons?”
Hong Bao looked from him to Qiu Ling and then back again. “I don’t think so.”
Behind them, Elder Gongxi’s lips curled into a smile. “Oh? So that is how the Yun Zou Sect actually sees us. Uninvited guests that can even be likened to demons. That is truly eye-opening!”
Jing Yi looked at Qiu Ling, silently asking for him to step in. He had no idea how to get out of this situation. He just knew that they definitely couldn’t let things stand like this or they would miserably fail the mission the Sect Master had given them. And, even worse, they might make a lot of trouble for the Yun Zou Sect.
Qiu Ling furrowed his brows. This day had been going very well until this girl appeared just now. How come his plan was suddenly being jeopardized? Wouldn’t that Elder Gongxi claim that the duel was only to get rid of them? That way, he would be able to get out of it. But what about the mission then? What about his leisure time with his beloved?! This girl should better not say anything else to get them into trouble!
He shot her a glare and then turned to Elder Gongxi, smiling brightly. “I really don’t know what Elder Gongxi is talking about. Whoever said that you were the uninvited visitors this girl just mentioned? Obviously, she doesn’t know too much about the situation if she doesn’t even know for sure whether they are demons or not. I mean you wouldn’t think that you might be somebody needing the attention of a demon hunter, would you?”
Elder Gongxi clicked his tongue. “What are you trying to insinuate? That we’re the ones who made this up? I don’t think this is how the Yun Zou Sect should treat their guests.” He shook his head and sighed. “Well, you can never know what people think of you. Maybe it would be better if we didn’t have that duel after all. We wouldn’t want even more hard feelings to emerge, would we?”
Qiu Ling narrowed his eyes but before he could say anything, Hong Bao already piped up.
“A duel? What kind of duel?”
Qiu Ling glanced at her and his lips curved into a smile. It seemed she was excited about this? Very well! He’d give her a reason to! “Oh, you know, yesterday, I asked the disciples of the Yang Huo Sect whether they’d like to have a friendly spar with me to exchange some pointers. You know we can never learn enough in regards to cultivation or sword arts, can we?”
Hong Bao nodded. “That’s true. My senior martial brother Liu often says the same thing. Do you think I can watch the duel? Or would you mind if I also took part? My cultivation isn’t that good but senior martial brother Liu said my sword arts aren’t bad.”
Elder Gongxi gave a smile. “This wouldn’t be you trying to get rid of the uninvited guests of the Yun Zou Sect, would it?”
Hong Bao blinked her eyes. “No. Why would it? I don’t even know who they are!”
Qiu Ling barely held back a grin. This girl did nothing but causing trouble but as long as she made that trouble for the Yang Huo Sect instead of him, he wouldn’t mind. He turned around to Elder Gongxi again, striking while the iron was still hot. “Did you hear that? Just as I said. This must be about something completely different and definitely has nothing to do with the Yang Huo Sect. So there’s no reason to be angry. You wouldn’t be so petty just because of a simple misunderstanding, would you?”
Elder Gongxi gritted his teeth. He had been so sure that he had finally found an opportunity to get out of this but this girl had completely defied his expectations. He had thought she didn’t know about the real situation and that she’d just admit to it when he asked. But it seemed he had been wrong.
Maybe she hadn’t been that unintentional from the very beginning and this had been a ploy to cut off one of his opportunities to get away from this. After all, he wouldn’t be able to use such an opportunity later on again. If he did, he would really seem petty.
Thus he could only nod at Qiu Ling with a grave expression. “Very well, let’s start with the duel then. My disciple should also have been healed by now.” He turned to look behind him and indeed, just then, the Yang Huo Sect disciple and Nian Hong Fang returned.
Hearing the Elder’s words, Nian Hong Fang’s expression lit up. Looking at the girl in the green robe that was now standing on the other side of Jing Yi and Qiu Ling, he couldn’t help but smile. “Oh? Is there yet another guest?”
Qiu Ling glanced at him and his eyes glinted. Before Hong Bao had the time to speak up, he nodded at Nian Hong Fang. “Yes, this is one of the disciples from the Chun Feng Sect. They also came to visit our sect.”
Hong Bao nodded. “Yes! Since I’m also a guest, can I take part in the duel?”
Qiu Ling wanted to reject her and make her leave but Nian Hong Fang already gave her a warm smile. “But of course! What do people say? The more the merrier? If the Yang Huo Sect has nothing against it, then this lady can certainly take part, can’t she?”
Elder Gongxi wanted to shake his head but what explanation would he have for rejecting her? He glanced at Qiu Ling. “Well, he’s already fighting against all of our disciples. It wouldn’t be fair to have him fight against yet another person, would it?”
Once again, Nian Hong Fang was faster than Qiu Ling. “Ah, then she can just fight against some of your disciples. Wouldn’t that be much fairer as well? Actually, young miss, do you think your martial brothers and sisters would be interested in taking part in the duel as well?”
Hong Bao blinked her eyes. She had snuck out once again so she wasn’t sure if it would be a good idea to go and tell Liu Cheng about this. What if he became angry?
Qiu Ling was happy with this suggestion though. He didn’t mind taking care of all of these disciples himself but who knew if what Jing Yi had said before wasn’t true and the Sect Master would indeed send him to take care of another sect later on? No, if they could take care of more than one sect with just this duel, then it would indeed be beneficial for them!
He turned to Hong Bao and nodded. “I think that’s a splendid idea! Let’s go and ask your sect’s disciples if they want to join in. Actually, while we’re at it, let’s just ask all of the Yun Zou Sect’s guests if they’d like to take part. I’m sure we’ll all be able to learn a lot!”