Zu An was really suffering, but he didnt show it on his face at all.
He said, “The crown princes exam involves King Qi.
It really isnt something an official of my level can get involved in.
However, the fact that I was unable to share in your majestys burden is something that leaves me in great shame and disappointment.
Please punish me.”
He, who was familiar with the art of ruling, obviously knew that the emperor wasnt really going to punish him.
The emperor was just using this chance to knock him down a peg, to give him more reason to complete the task.
That was why he played along.
The emperor was completely convinced that Zu An was being toyed with in the palm of his hand, yet he was actually being led by the nose.
This sort of feeling really was great.
The emperor was stunned.
He hadnt expected this kid to be so obedient.
He had prepared a bunch of criticism, yet now, it was completely useless.
He was completely caught off guard.
Eventually, he gathered his thoughts and said, “Since you already know that youve sinned, Im not someone unreasonable either.
I plan to give you a chance to make up for your mistake.”
Zu An sneered inwardly, but he looked overjoyed on the surface.
“Please speak, your majesty! This subject is willing to go through anything; not even ten thousand deaths can hold me back!”
The emperor was extremely satisfied with his attitude.
His expression eased a bit.
“I believe you already know about the crown princes exam.”
Zu An nodded.
“I heard a bit about it in the Eastern Palace.”
“The crown princess told you, I presume,” The emperor said with an ambiguous smile.
Zu An shivered inwardly.
He quickly replied, “The crown princess is worried about the crown princes prospects, so she wished for all of us subjects to pool our wisdom and see if there was a solution.”
Looks like this fella is still apprehensive about me and his daughter-in-law being too close. He had almost lost an arm back then just because he had to carry her, so he didnt dare slack in his reply.
He immediately expressed his innocence in the matter.
Thankfully, the emperor didnt continue to question him on that matter.
He instead said in praise, “Linglong, that child is responsible and diligent.
What she worries about isnt without reason.
Even I refuse to believe that Zhao Jing wouldnt interfere in this matter.”
Zu An keenly sensed that the other party hadnt used the title of King Qi like before, but rather directly used the name Zhao Jing.
It seemed the emperor was already slowly considering him one of his own.
In truth, they were kindred spirits in a way.
The emperor continued.
“This emperor really cant feel at ease, so I plan to send someone to follow the crown prince and look around inside.
The first reason is to ensure the crown princes safety, while the second is to guard against anything from King Qis side.
As a golden token envoy, as well as an important minister of the Eastern Palace, youre the most suitable candidate.”
Zu An felt a huge headache.
He really couldn\'t figure out why the emperor would trust him so much.
After all, this pi;d already be considered one of the first major battles between the emperor and King Qis faction.
Neither side could afford this loss.
Why did the emperor trust someone like him who hadnt been in the capital for that long
He quickly said, “This humble subject knows how worthless he is.
My life is insignificant, but there would be no forgiveness for me if the crown prince were implicated as well.
Based on what this subject knows, the most suitable candidate is none other than Chief Commander Zhuxie Chixin.
His cultivation is profound, and hes incredibly loyal to your majesty…”
The emperor cut him off before he could even finish his sentence.
“Hmph, do you think I dont want to send him However, both sides have tacitly agreed that no one over the seventh rank will enter the dungeon, and everyone knows that Zhuxie Chixin is already a pseudo-grandmaster.
How could Zhao Jings side possibly agree to him entering the dungeon”
Zu An had a bitter smile as he said, “But my cultivation rank has also surpassed that level…”
The emperors eyes narrowed.
“Honestly, youve increased in strength a bit too quickly.
You were only around the sixth or seventh rank when you first arrived at the capital.
Just how long has it been for you to have already reached this point But this doesnt make sense, because Ive already read through the Phoenix Nirvana Sutra you handed over.
Your cultivation should be even slower than an ordinary cultivators.”
Zu An shivered.
He knew that the emperor was suspicious of him right now.
Fortunately, he had already prepared for this.
“The reason why this subjects cultivation was fast is because Old Mi tried to possess me, so he gave me all of his cultivation.
Ive been gradually digesting his cultivation, so thats why Ive been advancing so quickly.”
The emperor nodded, letting go of his doubts.
With his knowledge and experience, he was fully aware of such phenomena.
Even though such things were able to bring quick increases in cultivation, they werent favorable at all for a cultivator in the long-term, as they would damage ones foundation.
One would have no hope of reaching higher cultivation ranks.
But the emperor didnt tell Zu An that.
His current cultivation was already perfect for what the emperor needed him for.
As for problems with Zu Ans cultivation in the future, that was for him to worry about himself.
“It doesnt matter if your cultivation realm is higher, because most people believe youre only around the seventh rank.
Ill give you a treasure that can hide your cultivation later, and that should do the trick,” the emperor said.
If it werent because everyone already knew what level Zhuxie Chixin was at, he might have already given it to him instead.
Zu An was shocked.
“Theres actually something like that in this world Isnt this test really easy then You can just send in some powerful cultivators then; clearing the exam will be a breeze!”
The emperor snorted.
“If only it were that easy.
Even though there are many items that can conceal your aura, there arent many that can escape the notice of truly accomplished warriors.
This is the only such item this emperor has found even after scouring the world.
Dont let down my trust in you.”
“Thank you, your majesty, for your grace!” Zu An looked as if he were incredibly moved.
Inwardly, even he was admiring his own acting skills. I hope I dont end up with some bipolar disorder or something by doing this all the time…
Then, the emperor warned him about some things to pay attention to before he entered the dungeon, and that protecting the crown prince was his absolute first priority.
Afterward, the emperor said, “You can leave.
Pay Concubine Bai a visit later; shell hand you the item.”
“Understood!” Zu An withdrew from the imperial study calmly as usual, but there were great emotions surging inside of him.
He had never expected the treasure capable of hiding ones cultivation to be in Concubine Bais possession.
He immediately made several guesses.
Just what kind of relationship did the emperor and Concubine Bai have Why would he leave something so important with her Wasnt Concubine Bai Yun Jianyues junior sister Dont tell me that the emperor really doesnt know that shes part of the Devil Sect!
While lost in thought, Zu An ended up wandering into the Hundred Flower Palace.
When he vaguely made out the scene of blossoming flowers, Zu An felt a chill run down his back. This woman really is too treacherous… He recalled how helpless she had seemed when he had provoked her a bit last time.
Now that he thought about it, maybe all of that was fake.
Wait, does the emperor also know that I provoked this concubine of the crown prince Many thoughts filled his mind, but he calmed himself down after taking a deep breath. Even if the emperor does know, so what Since he didnt expose me, that means he still needs me.
That gives me room to work with.
He was led inside by the palace maid.
Concubine Bai was slowly rocking back and forth on a swing, an infant in her arms.
She didnt seem surprised to see Zu An at all.
She waved her hand, gesturing for everyone else to leave.
“Is your highness implying for us to continue where we left off by sending the servants away” Zu An asked mischievously.
Concubine Bai didnt look scared and instead gave him an ambiguous smile.
“Even the current you Would you dare”
Zu An harrumphed.
He took a step forward and sat down on the swing.
He picked Concubine Bai up and placed her right in his embrace.
Concubine Bai was shocked and furious.
After a momentary daze, she began to struggle.
“What are you doing Let me go!”
You have successfully trolled Bai Rouxue for 34 34 34…
Zu An sighed.
“Thats why you shouldnt tease men like that.”
Concubine Bai stopped struggling.
She discovered that the more she struggled, the more her parts rubbed against Zu An.
She forced herself to calm down and asked gravely, “Do you know what youre doing right now If I told his majesty, not even nine lives would keep you alive.”
Zu An embraced her fair waist and honey peach bottom.
He replied in a carefree tone, “But you wont tell his majesty though, will you” His mindset was already completely different from before.
He preferred to be on the offensive.
Concubine Bais expression darkened.
“Dont think you can threaten me just because you know my relationship with the Devil Sect.”
“But that way is quite effective, no” Zu An didnt press the matter.
The reason he had teased her was just to lower her guard towards skinship and to get some more information.
He didnt really plan to do anything to her.
Concubine Bai took a deep breath, and then her expression became playful again.
“Then what if I told you that I was his majestys woman Would you dare to touch me again”