Chapter 1148 – Wishful Calculation
Translator: Exodus Tales Editor: Exodus Tales
The chilling wind blew past around the eaves this night and drilled through the slight in the door, stroking Zhu Xinghe’s face in the room, causing some gray hairs hanging on his temple to sway.
The Zhus’ main residence villa was the strictest and most guarded place in Zheng City just like the inner imperial palace of old. Sentries and posts were literally everywhere, be it the open ones or the hidden ones. Not even those at the level of martial arts grandmaster and also a qigong practitioner would find it easy to sneak into the Zhu Family’s residence.
Zhu Xinghe was now 60 years old, but his physique was still great and as energetic and sharp as ever. It could be said that the Zhus could develop to this extent and became the first family in He Province thanks to his Midas hands.
“Who is it?”
Zhu Xingho, who was quietly reading a book, suddenly had his complexion changed and his hand grabbed a sharp dagger instantly. Backhandedly gripping it, his eyes were trained at the closed door.
The door was gently pushed from the outside as Tang Xiu in casual black attire and a bronze mask strode into the room. His eyes looked smiling upon seeing Zhu Xinghe’s action.
“You’re Zhu Xinghe, the Zhu Patriarch, yes?”
Shooting a cold look at Tang Xiu, Zhu Xinghe didn’t even try to notify the family guardians immediately. He knew very well this person was likely very powerful given how quiet and silent he was able to sneak in and now stood before him. Such an occasion happened before when someone also appeared before without alarming anyone guarding the family. Although he admitted that the person at that time was indeed very strong.
“Who are you?”
Tang Xiu strode into the room and closed the door again. Then, he grabbed a chair and went to the opposite side of Zhu Xinghe and lightly spoke, “Nevermind who I am. I don’t have any intention to kill you. I came here out of the intention to ask you a few questions. I’ll leave as long as you honestly answer me satisfactorily.”
“Someone in the past also stood before me like you, Mister. But she still introduced herself as a basic courtesy. I don’t have a problem with answering your questions, but I need to know who you are.”
“Big troubles shall befall you if you were to find out my identity, even your family will be implicated,” said Tang Xiu lightly. “Do you still have that idea in mind after knowing this?”
“The Zhus never fear troubles,” replied Zhu Xinghe in a deep voice.
“Are you sure?” Tang Xiu instantly unleashed his aura that directly pressured Zhu Xinghe while smilingly coldly.
The old man’s face drastically changed and he struggled hard to free himself from the terrifying oppression. To his shock, however, no matter how frantically he circulated the True Qi in his body, he still couldn’t move in the slightest.
This person… is very terrifying. Much more than that woman.
“Now, I ask you again. Are you sure?” asked Tang Xiu.
Zhu Xinghe was silent. He was able to speak now but dared not to insist. This person possessed such a horrible power that was very likely enough to completely obliterate him, his family members, and all the guards here overnight.
After a long while, wearing a bit of helpless expression, Zhu Xinghe slowly asked, “What would you like to ask?”
Retracting his aura, Tang Xiu then moved one of his legs atop the other, and then took out a half-pack of cigarettes. After lit it up and drew the smoke in and out, he threw the remaining half-pack to Zhu Xinghe and said, “Your family is said to be the first power in He Province, which I suppose it’s not just in power but also intelligence network. You’re also a man with prominent status and position, so you should have seen that person yourself. That’s precisely the chief reason I came to you this time, which is to ask you some matters about the Floating Snow Chateau.”
“The Floating Snow Chateau?”
With a slightly changed expression, Zhu Xinghe forced a smile and said, “All of you are the same kind of people, but why must you pick me—an average man—to deal with your issue? If there’s any grudge between you people, please solve it among yourselves.”
“I guarantee the matter between us won’t affect you whatsoever, nor will it implicate your family,” said Tang Xiu. “I came here to ask you something. You also understand the principle that you can always prevail if you know yourself and thy opponents, don’t you?”
“You’re in hostile relations with the Floating Snow Chateau?” asked Zhu Xinghe.
Tang Xiu extended his finger and shook it. “No, no, no. I’m not certain whether the Floating Snow Chateau is my enemy as of now. Zhu Xinghe, just answer me, who is the Master of the Floating Snow Chateau?”
Zhu Xinghe was silent for a moment and slowly said, “It’s Xue Wuhen.”
“Tell me the details,” said Tang Xiu.
“That woman, Xue Wuhen, has always been untraceable, so I have no idea what she looks like. I only met her once and she was just like you, wearing a similar bronze mask and just appeared before me and sat where you’re sitting now. She’s very strong, and the aura she unleashed is slightly weaker than yours now. But I’m not sure about some other things, though.”
“You mean, she came to see you personally and that was because of the friction between both sides?” asked Tang Xiu.
Zhu Xinghe instantly realized this person must have done the homework and had done some investigations on him and the Floating Snow Chateau.
Tang Xiu nodded in response and said again, “You also concluded that the other party has some cultivators, yes?”
“Who else but cultivators can possibly have such dreadful power?” replied Zhu Xinghe with a bitter smile. “I’ve compared myself with the average people and I can say that I’m a very strong man. I even broke through to the martial arts grandmaster level a few years ago. But comparing myself with you is like comparing the cloud to dirt.”
Tang Xiu calmly thought about it for a few minutes and then asked again, “Any particularities about her, like her appearance and the like?”
“She’s a tall woman and dressed in white. The only particularity I can tell is her bare feet, which I happened to notice when I met her.”
Tang Xiu squinted and nodded before speaking, “Now tell me about the situation of the Floating Snow Chateau.”
Zhu Xinghe nodded. “The Floating Snow Chateau is regarded as the third-largest force in the He Province, but it’s actually off the mark. If my calculation is correct, their overall power is definitely much stronger than the Zhus’. There’s no one outside who can imagine that just Xue Wuhen alone is enough to completely obliterate everyone in the Zhu Family. The current person in charge of the Floating Snow Chateau is its Vice Master, Xue Mengdie, a very strong and resourceful woman. It took only two decades for the Floating Snow Chateau to spread out their industries in the province while also controlling many businesses under their monopoly in secret. That’s right. What I want to emphasize is that the members of Floating Snow Chateau are all comprised of women.”
“All of them are females.” Tang Xiu was surprised.
“Yes, all of them.” Zhu XInghe forced a smile and continued, “It is said that women can hold half the sky. They are precisely the epitome who proves it. These women may have some men under their control, but those men only work for them and are not their members. To the best of my knowledge, there has been only one man who entered the Floating Snow Chateau, and it happened just a few months ago.”
Tang Xiu’s expression slightly shifted and he inquired. “You know who that man is?”
“I don’t know much about him. I only know his name is Chu Yuan,” answered Zhu Xinghe.
A handsome face with a casual and elegant bearing immediately appeared in Tang Xiu’s mind. The man was the heir apparent of Shanghai’s Imperial Garden, and also well-known as a business genius in Shanghai. Someone hailing from the Occult Sect and one of Xue Yu’s pursuers then.
But still, how could he enter the Floating Snow Chateau? Could it be that there’s a woman there who likes him?
As he thought about this possibility, he immediately smiled and asked again, “Anyway, do you know anything else pertaining to the Floating Snow Chateau, by chance? Well, something very particular.”
“No.” Zhu Xinghe shook his head. “We may live in Zheng City, but the Floating Snow Chateau hides too deeply and is particularly low-key. Those who usually got exposed to the public are the people who manage their business. I don’t know much about its members.”
Tang Xiu no longer asked about the Floating Snow Chateau’s situation anymore. Instead, he said, “Are you not afraid that I’m one of them, so you’re not afraid of answering my questions?”
Zhu Xinghe smiled and shook his head. “I just told you the Floating Snow Chateau doesn’t have male members, didn’t I?”
Tang Xiu nodded in response. The instant the door was suddenly opened, he also disappeared without a trace from the chair, leaving only a faint closing sound indicated that someone had just been there.
Zhu Xinghe finally released a relieved sigh. He took out a cigarette with slightly trembling hands and lit it up. But his expression slightly changed after he drew a puff.
He could easily sense that the smoke he just drew in suddenly turned into a warm stream that flowed into four limbs and five major bones. Just one draw of smoke was worth months of painstaking work.
Suddenly, a familiar voice passed into his ear—
“Notify all the intel operatives of your family to lay low and do not gather any information nor investigate anyone again deliberately for the next 6 months.”
Zhu Xinghe’s complexion changed and a hint of awe could be seen in his eyes. He got and cupped his fist and said, “Zhu Xinghe won’t dare to go against your order. The Zhus will no longer gather information for the next 6 months.”
Whoosh! Whoosh! Whoosh!
Several figures flickered and moved lightning-fast and instantly appeared outside the door. As the door was opened, a middle-aged man in black wushu suit and a saber on his back vigilantly glanced around. Then, he cupped his fists and respectfully asked, “What happened here, Patriarch?”
Zhu Xinghe came out of the room and observed the surroundings for a while before he let out a bitter smile and replied, “A guest just visited me.”
These few men’s complexions changed and looked shocked. The middle-aged big man who just asked in a low voice, “Was it that person from the Floating Snow Chateau?”
“No.” Zhu Xinghe shook his head. “This person is much more dreadful and stronger than her.”
The few men exchanged glances and a chill immediately filled their hearts. That person from the Floating Snow Chateau several years ago had given them deep dread. Little did they expect someone more powerful than her would appear here again.