As they went out of the Western Qin and entered the territory of the Northern Song, the scenery became more and more picturesque. The lands were interspersed with famous mountains and rivers. Riding white cranes and overlooking it from the sky, they were under the impression that they were traveling in the wonderland. The mountains on that planet were indeed more spectacular than those on Earth. The lands were carpeted with lush plants and large tracts of virgin forest, which were rarely visited.
Sitting on the back of the white crane, Li Mu could not help exclaiming as he admired the view all the way along.
It had been a day and a night since they set off from Taibai County.
And the vehicle they chose for the journey was a white crane.
That was the one Li Mu had snatched from Liu Chong, a loyal subordinate of Huang Shengyi.
Originally, it was just an ordinary white crane that could carry one person at a time. But after living in Taibai County for weeks, it started mutating under the influence of the rich Spiritual Qi there. Adding that Xu Wan’er and the other pretty girls fed it with magic fruits and herbs, like all the other animals in Taibai County, it began to grow larger and larger, seemingly on the way to become the king of the crane by far.
The size of the white crane had multiplied compared to the past. By at time, its wingspan was already 10 meters. Its back was vast as an island. Its capacity for transportation had increased to 10 people. The crane’s feathers were as unbreakable as gold and iron. Both of its feet could crush rocks. Its beak also seemed to be sharp like a magic weapon for the soldiers. It could travel 50,000 kilometers per day and 25,000 kilometers at night. Sure enough, it was an extremely handsome bird. As it had gained a very high level of intelligence, it knew well how to satisfy its riders.
Therefore, when Li Mu “traveled abroad” this time, he chose that white crane as his vehicle. It could get him to the destination most speedily.
Besides Li Mu, on the back of the white crane also sat Qing Feng, the little attendant, Yuan Hou, the gold ape, General, the Huskie, and Zhao Ji, the messenger from the Northern Song.
Days ago, Li Mu just told Qing Feng that he would take him to the Northern Song to search for Ming Yue one day. But to his surprise, the day of going to the Northern Song came so soon.
With every flapping of the white crane’s outstretched wings, they covered several hundred meters.
By that noon, Li Mu and the others had penetrated to the heart of the Northern Song, which was about 5,000 kilometers from the borders.
“Well then, the Countess is at Mount Oxhead, isn’t she?” Li Mu asked.
At that time, Messenger Zhao Ji’s injury had been diagnosed and treated by the female pharmacist, Zhao Ling. The wound was covered with medicine to stop bleeding and looked not very terrible, but because of the excessive blood loss, Zhao Ji’s complexion was pale and slightly dispirited.
He knew that there was a certain friendship between Li Mu and the Countess. He already learned that when he came to Taibai County last time. But did the friendship was strong enough to make a martial arts giant like Li Mu go to the Northern Son and come to the Countess’s aid, Zhao Ji was not sure.
To his amazement, Li Mu set off resolutely the moment he heard of the request from the Countess.
That gave Zhao Ji a deeper understanding of the friendship between Li Mu and the Countess.
Hearing Li Mu’s questioning, Zhao Ji came out from his thoughts and quickly answered, “Exactly. Half a month ago, that Lord Virtuous the Eighth took the Countess to the Daoyin Temple on Mount Oxhead to burn incense. Then, he was besieged on the mountain by the troops of Lord Jin, who demanded Lord Virtuous the Eighth to approve his proposal to the Countess. Lord Virtuous the Eighth refused, so he had been forced to stay at Mount Oxhead and could not figure out a way to break free. Before I came to Taibai County for help, numerous guards of Lord Virtuous the Eighth have been killed. Lord Jin has declared that he will kill one person a day until the Countess marries him. He will first murder the guards of Lord Virtuous the Eighth, then turn to the Taoists in the temple, the maids of the Countess, and Lord Virtuous the Eighth himself…”
Li Mu inquired, “Who is this Lord Jin?”
With a spiteful look, Zhao Ji said, “Currently, there are eight lords in our Northern Song who have launched a revolt. They disobey the orders of the imperious emperor, and bring disasters to our folks…”
Li Mu nodded and remarked, “I know this. The catfight of the eight lords. So, is Lord Jin one of the eight lords?”
Zhao Ji said, “He is not only one of them, but the strongest, most powerful one.”
Looking at the virgin forests and a green sea of mountains below, Li Mu said, “If this is the case, then Lord Jin should not be a fatuous man. How could he compel a woman to marry him? That’s way beneath his level.”
After a moment of hesitation, Zhao Ji decided to tell Li Mu everything.
He said, “Lord Taibai, what you said is correct. Lord Jin is indeed an outstanding man. He is ambitious and dying to replace the emperor, but he is the son of a prince, not an offspring of the emperor. Therefore, according to the traditional qualification of our Northern Song that has lasted several thousand years, he is not entitled to take the throne. His forces are large and strong, and he has also had the support of Enlightened Taoist, the new head of Mount Qingcheng, one of the current Holy Clans. Despite all that, he is still in need of royal status. Now that Lord Virtuous the Eighth is the birth brother of the prior emperor and the uncle of the current emperor, he is the most definite royal member. He has the qualification, and is highly respected among the folks. Back then, Lord Virtuous the Eighth was the most promising candidate for the throne. But later, due to certain reasons, Lord Virtuous the Eighth gave up the throne, allowing the current emperor to come to the stage. Thus, if Lord Jin marries the daughter of Lord Virtuous the Eighth, he will get himself a royal title and have a legitimate reason to dethrone the emperor.”
What Zhao Ji just disclosed was the most confidential incident in the royal family of the Northern Song.
At that remark, Li Mu suddenly saw the light.
It turned out that that lord simply wanted to use Wang Shiyu’s status to glamorize himself!
Just like gold plating.
Well, those politicians had been too hard on themselves.
“How much further is it left to Mount Oxhead?” Li Mu asked again.
Zhao Ji said, “We have 300,000 kilometers to go in the east before we arrive in Lin’an, our capital. After that, only 15,000 kilometers left to Mount Oxhead. That mountain is the origin of our royal members. Its outline quite resembles an ox’s head holding toward the sky. That’s how it got the name.”
Hearing that, Li Mu did some mental calculations and drew the conclusion that if they traveled at the current speed day and night, it would still take about four or five days to arrive there. Anyway, Lord Jin was only trying to get the Countess to marry him. So, there were perhaps a couple of days before the lord lost his patience.
Ever since Li Mu learned that Wang Shiyu, who used to share a desk in classroom with him and the campus belle from Earth, had also come to that world, Li Mu had been perplexed by how and why she came there. But after running into General the Huskie outside the Everlasting Heaven and demanding it for the bottom of the whole thing, Li Mu finally understood that General and Wang Shiyu were both transported to that planet by the old faker by accident… “Come to think of it, the old faker is really unreliable. The Transmitting Array he made has transported two irrelevant creatures along with me!”
At that thought, Li Mu involuntarily shot a glance at the Huskie.
“Woof, human pet, who are you looking at? It’s not my fault! At first, the darn old man shut himself in the house and dug a pit. When I went in with that girl, we fell into the pit…” Up to then, General the Huskie still refused to acknowledge that at that time, in order to please Wang Shiyu, it had led the beautiful girl straight into the monk’s room and caused the great disaster.
Li Mu certainly would not waste his breath to argue with the dog.
Quite upset, Huskie remarked, “Why are you giving me that look? Watch your attitude! Woof! I tell you, treat me with respect. You should feel honored for becoming my pet. After all, my last human pet is a man who can travel across the universe, control all the galaxies, turn stars into his chess pieces, and tame devils and gods as his servants…”
Li Mu shook his head.
He now kind of missed the days when the stupid dog could not speak and had not acquired intelligence. Although the Huskie had sure been influenced by the brazen old faker, he had yet learned to brag at that time, which was so different from what it was now… Li Mu even considered pretending not to know the dog at all.
They flew like that until the white crane was too exhausted to carry on.
Slowly, they began to descend.
Beneath them was a small county called Green Hornet Gorge.
Li Mu let the white crane go find a peak and take a rest. He and the others came to an inn called Place for the Weary and settled in.
Since Zhao Ji was from the Northern Song, he was very familiar with the local customs. So, he ordered some local specials and two bottles of Green Hornet Drink, a famous wine in the area.
Li Mu was a very powerful practitioner, but he was also a fine-food eater. He never let go of any chance to try palatable food.
The wine and dishes were soon served.
Li Mu looked around casually.
The architecture style of the Northern Sone was quite different from that of the Western Qin. People in Qin were prim. They acted sometimes too stiffly and advocated the color black. So, most of their buildings were earth-and-stone structured, taking the shape of a square. The architects there pursued solely the utility and endurance of buildings. By contrast, people in the Northern Song were more open and artistic. Their buildings were mainly built with wood and earth in gorgeous and opulent styles. Even in that remote county, many exquisite wooden buildings could be seen, and the decoration on those buildings was complex and exquisite.
Although the inn called Place for the Weary had a strange name, their business was quite good. At dusk, the hall of the inn was full of customers. The head waiter shouted the dish names at the top of his lungs all the time. The hall was filled with all the hustling and bustling. The innkeeper, a gentle, handsome young man who looked not more than 25, was standing at the doorsteps, greeting the customers with a smile.
The reason why Li Mu eyed that young innkeeper a few times was because he carried a touch of Taoism Sense. It was the kind that could only be detected on those above the Sage Realm or the person who practiced Taoism for years.
“The young innkeeper is not an ordinary person.”
Li Mu quickly came to that conclusion.
“Never knew I could meet such a figure in this small town.”
During the whole meal, Li Mu had placed his attention on that young innkeeper. Soon, he made some new discoveries. To be sure, he was not a sage, but he must have practiced a certain Cultivation Method similar to the Xiantian Skill. That method caused Li Mu to have mistaken his strength.
This young innkeeper seemed to have a golden heart. When there were beggars passing by, he would give them food and drinks instead of harshly throwing them out as the other stores did.
At night, some expatriates who had left their homes due to the rebellion of the eight Lords came to Green Hornet Gorge with their family. The clothes they cladding were torn. The babies kept crying because of hunger, and the old moaning due to illness and pain. The view was rather dismal. The other restaurants and inns in the vicinity were all desperate to get rid of them. When the shopkeepers spotted those poor people from a distance, they immediately ordered the waiters to drive them away. Only the young innkeeper sighed at the view and asked the kitchen to prepare for some food. Then, he went out to distribute rice porridge in person and even gave some expatriates medical treatment. He also sent the head waiter to the medicine store downtown to fetch some medicine…
For his kindness, the homeless mumbled their thanks to the young innkeeper over and over again.
Zhao Ji said emotionally, “This young man is also a doctor! How surprising… He has a rare kind heart. During the rebellion of the eight Lords, the war is constantly going on. Many Song people left their homes and become refugees. They are starved and miserable. Yet, those powerful and wealthy are desperately shunning the refugees. But this young innkeeper has a golden heart. Unfortunately, at many times, good people don’t get good results. Those who commit murder and arson can get rich, but those who work hard for a lifetime die forgotten.”
As the messenger had seen a lot of the treacherous world, he made that comment with a sigh.
But before his words faded, some unexpected change occurred.
An elderly refugee with scabies, who looked like he should be in his death bed, was receiving the treatment of the young innkeeper. But all of a sudden, there was a glint in his eyes, and he bounced up, thrust out his palms and slammed them on the chest of the young innkeeper. With a wham, the energy fluctuations of the Celestial Being Realm erupted. The young innkeeper was sent flying backward, blood spilling from the corners of his mouth.
Li Mu fired a look at Zhao Ji.
“You jinxed it! That’s exactly what you just said!”
You’re reading Chapter 381 – Northern Song’s Green Hornet Gorge on readnovels.co. Wish you happy reading! Follow more great stories at action novel.