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EIF - Book 04 Chapter 062: Resorting to Overt Action after Covert Action Failed

“This should not happen. How could Archduke Xi Kang make a mistake in this matter?”

“How can we expect the other party to chip in when two nations are meeting? This is too rude!”

“Archduke Xi Kang can’t be stingy to the point where he refuses to provide food, right?”

The entire city discussed this.

Sima Changkong and Long Shenwu also looked at the scene in the sky in confusion. What exactly is going on?

After Five Sacred Mountains Academy butchered their auspicious beasts, the banquet finally started.

However, all the Yuan Nation officials appeared listless and taciturn.

Gu Hai, Long Wanyu, Sima Feng, Li Shenji, and the others on the Qian Nation’s side were confused, not understanding why.

“Everyone, please have a seat!” Archduke Xi Kang invited everyone to take a seat from the host’s seat.

Everyone nodded and sat down.

Archduke Xi Kang’s heart clenched tightly. After all, the matter of the banquet had been quite a failure. Instead of suppressing the Qian Nation, he ended up embarrassing himself. Nothing else could go wrong from here on.

“This archduke failed to consider things properly this time. Let me offer a toast to the Qian Nation envoy in compensation for my earlier rudeness!” Archduke Xi Kang raised his wine cup.

All those at the banquet raised their cups and drained them together.

“Mister Gu, many thanks for the banquet. Speaking of which, my Five Sacred Mountains Academy is currently emptied of food partly because of Mister Gu,” Archduke Xi Kang said with a smile.

“Ha? Archduke Xi Kang? Unexpectedly, you are blaming me for the improper welcome when the princess and I only just arrived? Is this just your personal style, or is this the style of the entire Yuan Nation?” The incensed Gu Hai showed a cold smile.

“Xi Kang, my brother-in-law and I just arrived. You failed to provide for a banquet, but you are blaming us for it? What are you playing at?” Long Wanyu glared.

Li Shenji sat at the side, showing a faint smile, not saying anything.

At this moment, all the citizens in Major Metropolitan City looked at Archduke Xi Kang speechlessly. Indeed. You are blaming this on Gu Hai? What a joke!

Archduke Xi Kang said unhurriedly, “Dozens of days ago, Five Sacred Mountains Academy captured two insidious, vile people. Originally, we should have eliminated such evil for the public good. However, those two claimed to be good friends of Mister Gu and that Mister Gu asked them to do that. This archduke recalled that Mister Gu was the master of the Han Nation, so to give face to Mister Gu, this archduke did not punish them. Instead, I housed them in Five Sacred Mountains Academy, letting them eat and drink as they pleased. Unexpectedly, they ate all the food in Five Sacred Mountains Academy, resulting in today’s embarrassment!”

“Oh?” Gu Hai said, feeling confused.

“Bring them over!” Archduke Xi Kang called out.

Everyone looked over, feeling confused.

They saw two figures—one fat and one skinny—bound in chains, brought to the plaza.

“Xi Kang, you old thing, why did you bind us?!”

“You said that you would treat us to good food and wine, but you locked us up instead. You are going back on your word.”

The two immediately scolded, feeling furious.

“Hey? It’s Purple Subtlety and Longevity?” Long Wanyu exclaimed.

Hearing Long Wanyu’s words, Archduke Xi Kang’s eyes lit up. “Princess Wanyu, do you recognize them?”

“Of course!” Long Wanyu said.

“Mister Gu, do you know them as well?” Archduke Xi Kang suddenly smiled at Gu Hai.

When Gu Hai saw the two, the two also saw Gu Hai.

“Gu Hai? You are here?”

“Gu Hai, quickly tell him to remove these chains. They are at least five hundred kilograms, very unbearable!”

Purple Subtlety and Longevity immediately called out.

Gu Hai looked at the two. At the same time, Archduke Xi Kang stared at him, waiting for his reply.

“That’s right. They are my friends.” Gu Hai nodded.

“Hahahahaha! Then, I did not falsely accuse Mister Gu!” Archduke Xi Kang laughed.

“Can you remove the chains from my friends first?” Gu Hai asked with a frown.

“Remove them!” Archduke Xi Kang said straightforwardly.

Rattle! Rattle!

As soon as the chains came off, Purple Subtlety and Longevity rushed to Gu Hai’s side.

“Gu Hai, this person is nothing good!” The two immediately snitched on Archduke Xi Kang.

“Ha! Nothing good? I think the two of you are the vile people!” Archduke Xi Kang’s eyes turned cold.

“What are you saying?” Purple Subtlety said with a glare.

“Oh? Archduke Xi Kang, how have my two friends offended you?” Gu Hai frowned.

“Does Mister Gu truly want to hear about it?” Archduke Xi Kang said with a cold smile.

“I am interested to hear the details. Although these two friends of mine are rather carefree and unconstrained, that does not mean that they can just be falsely accused of wrongdoing, right?” Gu Hai said with a cold smile.

Gu Hai had long sensed that Archduke Xi Kang intended to pick on him. However, Gu Hai did not shrink away. Instead, he clashed head-on with a cold expression.

“Let’s start with today’s banquet, then. Li Gang, tell them about it!” Archduke Xi Kang said seriously.

“Yes!” Li Gang, who was in charge of the banquet, stepped forward.

“This humble one failed to provide for the banquet because of these two. They claimed to be Mister Gu’s friends, so the archduke entertained them to the best of his abilities. As a result, he let them eat as much of Five Sacred Mountains Academy’s food as they wanted,” Li Gang explained.

“Let them eat as much as they wanted?” Long Wanyu goggled.

Long Wanyu knew about these two’s appetites. This archduke is very bold, letting them eat as they please?

When Archduke Xi Kang saw Long Wanyu’s expression, he felt confident.

“That’s right. This archduke let them eat as much as they wanted. However, they ate all of the food stored in Five Sacred Mountains Academy over the past month, not leaving anything behind at all. That was food for one million people,” Li Gang explained.

Gasp! All the present officials inhaled sharply.

Two people ate one million portions of food in one month? That must be a joke, right?

It was not just the officials. All the citizens watching the broadcast also opened their eyes wide, as though trying to see if these two were glutton spirits.

Long Wanyu blushed slightly red.

Gu Hai felt startled in his heart but soon suppressed his shock. Fortunately, I did not bring these two back to Chaoge City.

“Mister Gu, tell me. Doesn’t this matter have something to do with you?” Duke Xi Kang smiled at Gu Hai.

Gu Hai looked at the two, and the two avoided his gaze, not saying anything.

Gu Hai immediately understood. However, he could not let Archduke Xi Kang take the two away now.

“Purple Subtlety, Longevity, have you eaten your fill over the past few days?” Gu Hai asked with a smile.

“Eaten our fill? How can that be possible? When did we manage to eat our fill?” Purple Subtlety yelled with a glare.

Gu Hai turned his head to look at Archduke Xi Kang. “Archduke Xi Kang, many thanks for taking care of them. You kept them bound in chains for the past month and did not let them eat their fill. It must have been difficult for you. Ha! You can even make up a story, saying that they ate one million portions of food. What an incredible imagination! Two people eating one million portions of food? Haha! Haha!”

Gu Hai laughed very softly, but his meaning was clear. Who are you fooling?

Indeed, the two hundred million citizens watching the broadcast looked at Archduke Xi Kang immediately with dark expressions.

“How could Archduke Xi Kang do this? Even if he wants to vilify these two, he can’t do it this way!”

“Indeed. Isn’t this a breach of etiquette?”

“Two people eating one million portions of food? What a joke! There’s no way I’ll believe that!”

The various officials discussed this.

Even the officials in Five Sacred Mountains Academy’s plaza appeared skeptical. They frowned as they looked at Li Gang and Archduke Xi Kang.

Archduke Xi Kang’s expression turned stiff as he glared at Li Gang. I nearly got fooled by Li Gang. Who would believe such a reason?

“Archduke, I’m telling the truth! They really ate everything!” Li Gang felt like crying.

“Take him away!” Archduke Xi Kang shouted with a glare.

He no longer believed Li Gang.

“You two! You two! Say something! I’m not lying! I’m not!” A group of soldiers dragged Li Gang away.

Purple Subtlety and Longevity picked their teeth, ignoring Li Gang’s cries. Do you think that we are fools?

“The truth has come to light. However, I am quite curious. Why did you lock up my two friends?” Gu Hai said.

“Indeed. Why?!” Longevity shouted.

“Hahaha! Why? Several months ago, a demon woman went to the western sector of the city, an area where ordinary people resided. Who knew what demonic arts she performed? But she caused trouble everywhere. A drought appeared for five hundred kilometers around there, and locusts flew everywhere. The ordinary citizens exchanged their children for food, a cruel sight to behold. When this archduke received information about it, I brought supplies to relieve the disaster and met that demon woman there. So, I aimed my bow to shoot her down and eradicate the harmful element for the citizens. However, these two attacked me, causing my arrow to miss and letting that demon woman escape. Millions of ordinary citizens witnessed it. Ha! Instead of being ashamed of the sneak attack, they took glory in it. They even said that Mister Gu directed them to do it. I only kept them around on account of Mister Gu. Mister Gu, tell me, aren’t these two friends of yours insidious, vile people?” Archduke Xi Kang said with a cold smile.

“Gu Hai directed them?” The surrounding officials appeared confused.

“The demon woman harmed the ordinary citizens?”

“I’ve heard about it. A descendant of a distant relative lives there. He said that when the archduke went to relieve the disaster, some vile people sneak-attacked him, resulting in the culprit behind the disaster escaping.”

“Gu Hai directed them to do that? Indeed, birds of a feather flock together. Gu Hai is indeed a vile person as well.”

The two hundred million citizens in the city immediately felt enraged.

However, Gu Hai gave Purple Subtlety and Longevity a confused look. “I directed you two to do that?”

“Indeed. That demon woman he mentioned is Fairy Waner,” Purple Subtlety explained.

Gu Hai’s expression immediately changed. Then, he turned his head to look at Archduke Xi Kang.

“Mister Gu, you directed them to do that?”

“Ha! I did direct them to do that!” Gu Hai said with a cold smile.

------

In the city, Fairy Waner bit on her lips, showing an unsightly expression.

Everyone in the restaurant was scolding and criticizing Gu Hai, calling him a vile person.

------

“Oh?” Joy brightened Archduke Xi Kang’s face.

“However, is Archduke Xi Kang sure that my friend is the one who caused the disaster in that ordinary citizen region?” Gu Hai asked seriously.

“That demon woman is your friend?” Archduke Xi Kang smiled even more cockily.

“She is my friend, but I think you misunderstood her. She cannot possibly do such a thing,” Gu Hai said coldly.

“Haha! Since she is your friend, then never mind. Let’s not mention that for now. When this archduke is free, I like to write poetry. Since Mister Gu came from afar, let this archduke give Mister Gu and your two friends a poem,” Archduke Xi Kang said coldly.

Archduke Xi Kang clapped, and someone immediately brought a scroll over to Gu Hai.

“Ah! Isn’t this that poem? ‘The Army Returns on Arriving in the Han Nation’?”

“Yes, it’s that poem. When the archduke wrote it, I was by his side. This is a poem criticizing Gu Hai.”

“He is giving a poem that criticizes Gu Hai to Gu Hai in front of everyone?”

The surrounding officials immediately discussed this, looking at Archduke Xi Kang in shock.

This was openly criticizing Gu Hai and these two as vile people—resorting to overt action after covert action failed. Clearly, Archduke Xi Kang was trying to trample on Gu Hai.

DragonInWhite's Notes:

Chapters for December: 46 / 50

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Written by Guan Qi — Watching Chess. Translated by DragonInWhite. Edited by Vampirecat.