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NETS - Chapter 196 – Conspiracy

In Master Immortal Liu's cave-dwelling, all 18 leaders of the six patrol teams were present. The Patrol Team One members, with the exception of Hu Lili, were also present. Everyone listened to Yuan Zhan's explanation.

After Enlightened Master Yang Xuan-Mu gave the order for everyone to escape on their own, he passed out shortly after from exhaustion of his true energy, and serious injuries he had sustained. The master immortals desperately carried Enlightened Master Yang, protecting him in the center.

The ambush took everyone by surprise and created chaos all of a sudden.

The members of Patrol Team One were separated during the breakout process. Hu Lili, Leng Qian, Jiang Zi-Xuan, and Yuan Zhan escaped from the siege together.

Despite managing to escape from the encirclement, the four of them were unable to get rid of the pursuing monster beasts.

There were six Late Blood Condensation Realm monster beasts chasing after them. The monster beasts could move very fast in the water, and so the group of four couldn’t outrun them. After several clashes, their arcane energy depleted, and their speed got slower.

At this time, Hu Lili stepped up and said, "Junior Brother Yuan and Junior Sister Leng, take care of Junior Sister Jiang and leave. I will lure away the monster beasts. They are here for Junior Sister Jiang, we can't let her fall into their hands."

Yuan Zhan and Leng Qian naturally refused, but Hu Lili insisted. She told them that Great Ancestor Jiang Tian-Lin's prowess had shocked the monster race, but since the monster race couldn’t do anything to a heavenly cultivator like him, they could only attack the people around him like Junior Sister Jiang Zi-Xuan, as retaliation and to threaten him.

Then, Hu Lili didn’t give them a chance to refuse, leaving in the direction of the pursuing monster beasts.

Left with no choice, the two carried the seriously injured and unconscious Jiang Zi-Xuan back towards Huang Li Island.

On their way back, the two were shocked by the sudden appearance of a middle-aged lady who scooped the unconscious Jiang Zi-Xuan into her arms.

Leng Qian happily addressed the lady as her teacher. It was then that Yuan Zhan knew the lady was Zhen Ling Sect's Enlightened Master Liu Xuan-Ling, wife of Great Ancestor Jiang Tian-Lin, and mother of Jiang Zi-Xuan.

Enlightened Master Liu Xuan-Ling took Jiang Zi-Xuan and Leng Qian directly back to Tian Ling Mountain, while Yuan Zhan was left behind to return by himself to Huang Li Island.

After hearing that Lu Ping's eyes turned cloudy. He was expressionless, a far cry from his earlier fury towards Yuan Zhan.

Lu Ping's tone was calm, as if he was talking about something that had nothing to do with him, and asked, "Why is little junior sister with the patrol teams?"

Yuan Zhan didn’t answer and looked at Liu Zi-Yuan.

Liu Zi-Yuan coughed twice, to suppress his serious internal injuries so that he could speak, his voice was hoarse, "Junior Sister Jiang followed Great Ancestor Jiang Tian-Lin out, afterwards she came to play with Junior Sister Leng Qian. Then, she stayed with us to replace your position in the formation."

Liu Zi-Yuan paused, "Before Enlightened Master Yang fell unconscious, he did say the monsters were after Junior Sister Jiang. The mysterious attacker was definitely in the Mid Core Forging Realm, but didn’t go all out because he had to hide his identity. Otherwise, there is no way we would have been able to take on a Mid Core Forging Realm's full-blown attack."

Lu Ping had always been grateful for Liu Zi-Yuan's help and care, so he was a little more respectful when he listened to Liu Zi-Yuan's explanation.

Lu Ping asked, "Why did the mysterious attacker leave after one attack?"

Liu Zi-Yuan shook his head, "That, I don't know."

While Shi Lingling said, "Junior Sister Jiang must have a protective talisman, or similar treasures. At the moment she was attacked, the treasure would alert Enlightened Master Liu or Great Ancestor Jiang. The mysterious attacker must have noticed the alert when he delivered the first attack, that's why he left hastily. He was afraid that by the time he sent out his second attack, Enlightened Master Liu or worse, Great Ancestor Jiang, would have already arrived at the scene."

Shi Lingling's status was in no way below Jiang Zi-Xuan’s, perhaps it was even higher. So, when she said that Jiang Zi-Xuan had such a treasure on her body, it was because she also had something like that with her.

Lu Ping remembered that Zhong Hua Palace's servant also said that Enlightened Master Liu had left in anger yesterday. So, it seemed like that was because she had been alerted about Jiang Zi-Xuan's danger and left to save her.

Lu Ping's voice was still cold as he asked, "I understand how Senior Sister Hu, Senior Sister Leng, and Junior Sister Jiang are together, but you… how come you were also together with them?"

Lu Ping was as indifferent as ever, as if he had become the master of the cultivation room, ignoring the leaders present around him.

It was only when Liu Zi-Yuan spoke that he showed a little respect.

But strangely, no one said anything about it, they were all suppressed by Lu Ping's dominating aura and were listening quietly as Lu Ping questioned Yuan Zhan.

Although Li Zi-Ming was indignant for getting shouted at by Lu Ping just now, he also didn’t dare to show it, as he was afraid Lu Ping would really vent his anger and kill him.

Yuan Zhan was also a little embarrassed at the moment, but he still replied under Lu Ping's gaze, "Leng Qian is my fiancée. The marriage was arranged by the Yuan Clan and Leng Clan when we were younger."

This was something the rest didn’t know. Yuan Zhan added, "I was worried about Junior Sister Leng 's safety, so I approached her during the siege."

Yuan Zhan's explanation seemed to be reasonable. However, Lu Ping's face was expressionless after he had calmed down, so no one knew what he was thinking.

Lu Ping slowly squinted his eyes. Just when Yuan Zhan was shivering from his gaze, Lu Ping suddenly turned around and walked out of the cultivation room.

Chen Lian anxiously called out, "Junior Brother Lu, where are you going?"

Lu Ping answered without turning back his head, "To the sea. To find Senior Sister Hu."

Chen Lian hurriedly persuaded, "It has already been more than a day. Junior brother, you should return to Tian Ling Palace and check on Junior Sister Hu's soul lamp. If her soul lamp is still burning, we will all go together and find her… if it has been extinguished… we will take our revenge in the future!"

Chen Lian's voice was fading in the wind, but everyone heard Lu Ping's answer clearly, "She will not die."

The agitated Yao Yong stood up and said loudly, "Junior Brother Lu, I will come with you! We will…"

However, before he could finish his words, Yao Yong suddenly coughed hard, spurting out a mouthful of blood.

Shi Lingling dragged him back and said, "How are you going to find Senior Sister Hu in this condition? You are just going to be a burden if you go out now."

Lu Ping's departure relieved everyone in the cultivation room, the pressure he exerted on them was too heavy. Even the leaders and deputy leaders took their leave shortly after, as if staying in the room reminded them of Lu Ping's suppression.

After the leaders left, only the members from Patrol Team One were left in the cultivation room.

There were no outsiders now, so Yao Yong said angrily, "This Leng Qian is also under the same tutelage as Lu Ping, how can she just watch Senior Sister Hu go to her death?"

Shi Lingling pinched him on the arm, "We didn’t see the situation at that time, and only know it through Yuan Zhan's words, we can’t jump to conclusions yet!"

Zheng Jie, who had always been close to Hu Lili, said, "If Leng Qian didn’t feel guilty in her heart, why would she follow her teacher back and hide in Zhong Hua Palace, instead of returning straight to Huang Li Island?"

The crowd froze. Liu Zi-Yuan said in a solemn voice, "Alright, that's enough. Don't forget that Enlightened Master Liu Xuan-Ling is also Lu Ping's teacher!"

Liu Zi-Yuan paused for a moment before he continued, "Right now, we need to focus on recovering. I have already sent someone back to Tian Ling Mountain to check on Junior Sister Hu's soul lamp. If it's still burning, we will go to the sea once our injuries are recovered, but if it is not… I hope Junior Sister Hu is alright."

The crowd turned silent and quietly focused on their injuries.

Liu Zi-Yuan didn’t say anything anymore and was thinking to himself. There was a question that was tormenting him, a question which he desperately wanted to know the answer to.

When Yuan Zhan and Leng Qian saw Enlightened Master Liu, did they not ask Enlightened Master Liu to rescue Hu Lili?

Liu Zi-Yuan believed Lu Ping also noticed the loophole in Yuan Zhan's explanation, but Liu Zi-Yuan and Lu Ping didn’t ask because they didn’t dare to.

Because… what if Yuan Zhan actually had asked…

When they reached this line of questioning, both Liu Zi-Yuan and Lu Ping quickly stopped their thoughts right there.

RD's Notes:

Weekly Chapters (4/5)
Editor: Immortal BloodRogue

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Written by SleepingAutumn. Translated by RD.