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The Flower Guarding Bell - Chapter 21

Chapter Twenty-One - Strange Encounters

Nangong Ping knew that the situation was urgent so he gently nodded his head. He carried Mei Yinxue to the side of the bed before hitting her on her both her Qimen, Qi Kan and Xuan Ji accupoints to protect her last vital energy so that it would not disperse!

Immediately, he carried Sima Zhongtian to Long Bushi and covered them with a white cloth. With tears flowing, he picked the Fallen Autumn Leaf, bit his teeth and sprang out of the window!

Once he was outside, he was shocked to see Ren Fengping deploying the Heaven Wind Silvery Rain formation. It was even larger now! And the destructiveness of this formation was tens of times more formidable than the last time! It was obvious that they had reformed this formation!

By now, only three men were left standing. They were Sun Zhongyu, Gu San and another elderly old man by the name of Wei An! All three of them were now very haggard and looking pathetic. They were covered in blood, sweating profusely with their hair in a messy state. They had been through a very terrible battle!

Nangong Ping shouted. “Stop it!”

Ren Fengping turned back and saw that it was Nangong Ping. He was startled and he secretly thought. “Oh no!”

Nangong Ping did not pause for even a split second as he swiftly sprang past Ren Fengping without looking at him and into the midst of the fighting!

With a stance ‘The Startling Outer Heaven’, the Fallen Autumn Leaf was filled with a teething sword energy as Nangong Ping pierced through three men that was blocking him, cutting them into pieces.

Although their blood spilled upon Nangong Ping, still he did not hesitate as he sprang towards the middle, sending another three men to their grave!

With the death of six men, suddenly the formation had a momentarily lapse as the three trapped men began to charge out of the encirclements!

Everyone present was shocked to see Nangong Ping broke through the Heaven Rain Silvery Rain formation with two mere stances!

Ge Zhonghai shouted as he raised both his hands to impact upon Nangong Ping. The windforce of his hands were astonishing, it obvious that his hands were filled with powerful internal power!

Nangong Ping just smiled awhile and he blocked with his left hand while he pointed his sword to Ge Zhonghai throat!

Sun Zhongyu, Gu San and the another elderly man had charged towards Ren Fengping. They had now hated him teething to the bones! Unless Ren Fengping died, they would never stop!

But Ren Fengping could not be belittled! He extended his hands and fan and began to strike at Sun Zhongyu and Gu Sa. In that instant, both Sun Zhongyu and Gu Sa barely managed to fend off Ren Fengping extraordinary martial skills!

Ren Fengping began to shout for the remaining Four Eagles to join in the battle fray!

As Nangong Ping was extremely worried for Mei Yinxue, he decided to end the fight hastily. Therefore all his strokes were fast and vicious types! Now that his two Energy Meridians channels had been cleared by Long Bushi and he had breached the limitations of the Life and Death Channels, his flow of internal strength was like the River Changjiang (One of the two major rivers of China), flowing continuous and nonstop. Because all his techniques and stances were already marvelous in the first place, now that it was imbued with a powerful internal energy, his swordplay was impossible strong and piercing.

Ge Zhonghai was greatly startled. And Ge Zhonghai had now suffered cuts and slashes as Nangong Ping displayed several epitome techniques with the Fallen Autumn Leaf – ‘Transition of the Wondrous Seven Stars’, ‘Flying Stance Startling Sun’, ‘Storms of Fury’. He could barely fend his attacks with his spears!

Desperate he seized the first opportunity to impact Nangong Ping again with his powerful fists. But who would expect that Nangong Ping would choose take the challenge and impacted his hands with his. There was a thunderous clap as Ge Zhonghai was pushed back several steps and his expressions changed. Nangong Ping’s internal force was now like a ocean, without needing to pause to lift his vital energies after the clash of internal power, he dashed past Ge Zhonghai and cut him into two piece! And so end the life of one of the right hand men of Shuai Tianfan.

Without hesitating, Nangong Ping began to spring towards Ren Fengping!

Ren Fengping knew that it was now very unfavorable as he found himself attacked by Sun Zhongyu who hated him for killing his Stewards and Nangong Ping who seemed much stronger than before! While he was thinking, Nangong Ping had pierced his fan and he was forced to discard it.

Suddenly there was a terrifying scream by the Yellow Eagle as Gu Sa killed

him.

Suddenly Ren Fengping did an all out attack that startled both Nangong Ping

and Sun Zhongyu. This stance of his, disregarded his very own safety and focused on an all out attack! But suddenly, Ren Fengping instead of forward, he began to spring away hastily! Ren Fengping sprang inside the room, followed by Nangong Ping and Sun Zhongyu in hot pursuit.

But they saw Ren Fengping holding the weak Mei Yinxue and his right hand was on her back, facing her heart. He laughed. “Stop! If you are to move one more step, I will immediately deal her a blow on her heart. You must know that I never kid!”

Nangong Ping was staring in rage. He bit his teeth and did not even move a single step! Sun Zhongyu too did not move or made a single sound.

Mei Yinxue was now breathing very faintly. She looked extremely fragile and weak and her eyes were closed and her soft long hair covered her face.

Nangong Ping was feeling very terrible in his heart and he shouted. “If you do not put her down now, today you can never retreat in safety!”

Ren Fengping coldly added. “If I want to retreat in safety, then all the more I need her to be my hostage till I can leave this place!”

Nangong Ping was furious now as he shouted. “Ren Fengping! If today, Mei Yinxue died in your hands, I, Nangong Ping will swear to tear you into a million pieces or else I am not a human!” Nangong Ping eyes and face was filled with an unforgettable and a piercing malevolent air!

Ren Fengping tried his best to avoid Nangong Ping’s eyes, which was now like swords piercing through his heart!

Nangong Ping did not dare to move recklessly. He could only wait and search for a chance to rescue Mei Yinxue!

Ren Fengping did not dare to be careless too. If something were to happen to Mei Yinxue, he would for certain had to perish here today!

The screaming sound in the courtyard had ceased now, all the remaining Startling Heaven Seven Eagles as well as the tall imposing man that was leading the Heaven Wind Silvery Rain Formation had been killed by Gu San and Wei An!

So when they had appeared, Ren Fengping was even more worried. Death was now approaching Mei Yinxue as he gripped her even more tightly but it was approaching him as well!

But suddenly he saw another group of people coming, he was startled but he was also very delight! Leading the group was Guo Yuxia with three other elderly men!

Guo Yuxia walked to the side of Nangong Ping and said in a lovingly tone.

“Have you been doing good, Fifth Brother?”

Nangong Ping was getting impatience but for the sake of Long Fei, he did not wish to be rude to her. So he replied casually. “I am fine!”

Ren Fengping took the opportunity to exit out of the Inn in astride! Nangong Ping was startled and he turned back his head and shouted. “Ren Fengping! If you dare to move one more step! Don’t blame me for being nasty to you!” Ren Fengping coldly said. “I am afraid it will be not the case now!” Nangong Ping angrily said. “If you don’t believe, you can try it!”

Although the three elderly men that were with Guo Yuxia had no special characteristics but from their expressions in their eyes and their steps, they were definitely top exponents!

Although the situation had now been titled against him but Nangong Ping did not show any fear. He secretly lifted his internal force and prepared himself for an all out attack!

Sun Zhongyu, Gu Sa and Wei An had also sensed the graveness of the situation, therefore they were already on guard!

Guo Yuxia smiled and laughed. “Fifth Brother, there are rumors in the Pugilist that say that you have been to the Divine Creator Island and have mastered several epitome martial techniques, is it really true?”

Nangong Ping by now was already in rage so he shouted. “That is right!” He kept staring at Ren Fengping, refusing to leave him out of his sight.

Guo Yuxia shifted her eyes and asked. “What happens to both of you? Is there some differences between Hero Ren and you?”

Nangong Ping said. “That is right!”

Guo Yuxia added. “Hero Ren wishes to take the Cold Blood Concubine away but you do not allow him to do so, is that right?”

Nangong Ping coldly shouted. “That is right!”

He had said ‘That is right!’ three times and every word were filled with his teething rage.

Guo Yuxia raised her eyebrows and said unhappily. “What has it to do with Fifth Brother when Hero Ren wants to take Mei Yinxue away? Why did you want to stop him? Is the rumors that have been circulating in the Pugilist really true?”

Nangong Ping angrily said. “Protégé Sister in Law! Why are you siding with the outsiders?!”

Guo Yuxia angrily replied. “Mei Yinxue has such an infamous fame in the Pugilist, you actually did not know what is shame and even tour hand in hand with her. Do you know that you have disgraced Zhijiao Manor!”

Nangong Ping shouted aloud. “I am just following Mentor Master’s orders to protect her. Moreover she is kind at heart and it is in fact the people that are in the Pugilist that have ill intentions towards her!”

Guo Yuxia said. “No matter. Now I am ordering you to leave this place as your protégé sister in law and let Hero Ren to take away Mei Yinxue!”

Nangong Ping laughed aloud. “Do you think that you have the right to order

me?” Guo Yuxia was awash with anger now. “What makes you think I can’t?”

Nangong Ping sternly said, “You have betrayed your Master by going against the righteousness that he had established and cause much wrongdoing in the Martial Fraternity. You alone have destroyed all of Mentor Master’s fame and reputation, you and me have no ties now, what make you think you can order me!”

Guo Yuxia rebuked him. “You are the one that have betrayed your Master and go against the righteous of the Clan! Today on behalf of Mentor Master, I am going to remove you who is a most unrighteous disciple!” When she had finished, she raised her hands to strike him!

Nangong Ping was filled with hatred for her. He was teething with rage that had reached intolerant level now but he was still staring at Ren Fengping when he extended his hand against Guo Yuxia.

Guo Yuxia did not expect that Nangong Ping would really use all his strength against her therefore she was hit by him and had to stagger back seven to eight steps!

Nangong Ping expressions did not change or looked at Guo Yuxia and he continued to stare at Ren Fengping!

Guo Yuxia was angry now. Just when she wanted to attack him again, there was a shout from behind and a shadowy figure of a man sprang into their midst! It was Shi Chen!

Shi Chen shouted. “Fifth Brother don’t panic, your silly protégé brother is here!” And he did not wait to finish and started to exchange blows with Guo Yuxia!

Guo Yuxia was startled. “Shi Chen! Are you crazy?”

Shi Chen shouted aloud. “I am not crazy! All along I was dreaming but now I have woke up from my dreams! You alone have disgraced the Divine Dragon Clan. Since Big Brother (Referring to Long Fei) is not here, therefore I have the most seniority now! (Shi Chen has the Golden Dragon Dagger to punish wrongdoers in the Clan) I will punish you on behalf on Mentor Master!”

And he began to attack like a crazed tiger, using all the most vicious stances and strokes, momentarily Guo Yuxia was pushed back to a wall.

More shouting now, as the three elderly men that Guo Yuxia had brought with her began to join the battle fray! One of them began to join hands with Guo Yuxia against Shi Chen while the other two attacked Nangong Ping!

Nangong Ping knew that it was a hopeless situation as he tried to fend off the two attackers while springing towards Ren Fengping at the same time. But Ren Fengping gripped Mei Yinxue in front of him as his shield and Nangong Ping was forced to withdrawn his stance!

Ren Fengping laughed most despicably. And then he sprang out of the door while the two elderly men hindered Nangong Ping! Mei Yinxue was gripped violently by Ren Fengping that she moaned aloud and fainted!

Nangong Ping’s heart felt like a knife was cutting him, heart wrenching and painful by the way Ren Fengping had handled her! “You dare to leave!” He tried to pursue him but for a time, as he was being attacked from the front and the back at the same time, he could not free himself.

Sun Zhongyu suddenly shouted, “Brother Nangong you do not need to be worried, I swear to bring Maiden Mei back to you!” And he began to give chase after Ren Fengping! Gu San and Wei followed him.

What could Nangong Ping do but hummed coldly as he was now filled with intolerant level of rage and hatred. His stances and strokes were now filled with a malevolent air as he was determined to save Mei Yinxue. With both hands, he began to use ‘Chant of the Suffering Pain’ as he began his ferocious attacks. One of the elderly men was startled and was fell by Nangong Ping with a blow below his waist vulnerable point! The other man tried to retreat but was hit in his Shi Guan and Zhong Zhu accupoint points by Nangong Ping as he fell unconscious on the ground.

Suddenly there was a scream by Shi Chen and Nangong Ping turned to see that he was now looking very pale and his clothing was shredded! Shi Chen had suffered greatly!

Without hesitating, he began to spring to aid Shi Chen. Nangong Ping was never a petty person who did sneak attacks but these few days he had been through several insufferable terrible ordeals that he was berserk with rage in his heart.

Therefore he did not even pause to consider as he sprang and fell the old man who was fighting with Shi Chen!

The golden rays of the setting sun in the west flooded into the Inn but Ren Fengping and Guo Yuxia were nowhere in sight.

Nangong Ping was rigid in his expressions as he took a look at Long Bushi and Sima Zhongtian. Next he walked to Nangong Yongle bed and touched him but the body was icy cold and hard. It was because Nangong Yongle had long passed away!

Although Nangong Ping did not know his uncle very well but blood was thicker than water and he was grieving for his loss! His tears began to flow freely, as he looked idiocy at this old man that had died in loneliness. All his emotions were all numbed now due to over excitement. His Mentor Master was now dead, his uncle was now dead, his father’s old friend as well as Long Bushi’s, Sima Zhongtian was now dead. In just a single day, three of the old men that were the closest to him to him were dead. He was not a superhuman and was made of flesh and blood. He could not handle the affliction of such a loss at all and all these sudden events that had happened to Mei Yinxue, Ye Manqing, Di Yang and Yi Luo. If he were not filled with fiery rage and thoughts of vendetta, he would have collapsed now!

He clutched both his hands together in front of his chest and muttered silently. Was he praying for blessing or saying a prayer for the dead? But two tears dripped down from his face! And then he walked out of the room. There was no one in the Inn now, the rest of the guests, Innkeeper, shop assistants had long fled!

Suddenly he had a jolt in his mind. He suddenly remembered that Ren Fengping had kidnapped Di Yang and his Lady together with Ye Manqing on his way to the Southern Mountains. Moreover now Ren Fengping had also captured Mei Yinxue. If he could rush to the Southern Mountains to search, although he was not very confidence but at least he could find something! Gathering his thoughts, he returned to the room again to see Shi Chen had stood up now with tears on his face.

Nangong Ping said. “Third Protégé Brother! I have an urgent matter to do. If by dusk tomorrow, if I did not return, can you please send Mentor Master and the other two bodies back to Zhijiao Manor!

Shi Chen said. “What is the urgent matter? I cannot go with you?”

Nangong Ping said. “It is only a personal matter of mine. Moreover the tasks here are equally important too. I beseech Third Brother and thanks for your hard work!” And he had sprung away hastily out of the window!

Shi Chen sighed and stared at the corpses in the room.

The South Mountains Villa was grand manor surrounded by woods and other wondrous creations of nature. Some of the surroundings were man made and if a person were wise enough, he would know that the surroundings were in fact a formation layout! If one were not careful, they would get lost very easily!

Suddenly, more than ten shadowy figures were springing swiftly on the leaves of the tall trees and the grasses! And every one of them knew the most intricate swiftness movement skills that were in the Martial Fraternity – Flying on leaves and grasses!

In a twinkle of an eye, they had bypassed the forest formation!

Under the moonlight, seventeen of them could be seen! Everyone was dressed as a beggar. The two beggars that were in the lead were wielding two bamboo staff. They were the Hungry Ghost Yi Feng and Malevolent Ghost Song Zhong! Without a doubt, they were the Ghastly Beggars! Suddenly there were rows of lights being lit up in their directions, as the entire place became ghastly. Their coming did not escape notice.

Malevolent Ghost Song Zhong laughed. “Since we are here, it time we collect some debts. Have the Ghastly Beggars ever been afraid of anything? Brothers, even if it is the palace of the King of Hades, we would still want to rampage it!”

And he started to walk boldly into the villa, accompanied by the Hungry Ghost Yi Feng and the rest of his gang.

Yi Feng looked around and said. “This place is so big, if it is a fighting ground, it will be very convenient!”

In the hall of the villa, a middle age man by the name of Mi Baixiang greeted them. He was pale and eerie looking. “May I know what brought you here?”

His voice was like a girl and gentle. Everyone presented was stunned! Yi Feng asked. “Are you the owner of this place?”

Mi Baixiang smiled. “I dare not dream of it! I am just the steward of the Southern Mountains Villa Mi Baixiang!”

Yi Feng said rudely. “Ask the owner out to talk!”

Mi Baixiang was not moved by anger and he said plainly. “My Master will not see any guests at the moment. If you have anything to say, you can say to me, it is the same!”

Yi Feng expressions changed and he angrily said. “Hey! We are here for some people!”

Mi Baixiang asked. “What do you mean?”

Song Zhong shouted. “A person shouldn’t do sneaky things! I advise you not to pretend any longer. The Tianshan Divine Sword Di Yang and Brother Yi’s sister, Yi Luo have been captured by you. Tonight, we are here to take them back with us!”

Suddenly there was a laughter as a man with a black veil appeared. “Since we have some honorable guests here, why don’t you invite them with hospitality? What are you waiting for?”

The Ghastly Beggars were startled and Mi Baixiang expressions changed.

He bowed with his hands respectfully and said. “My Master invites honorary guests to have a seat!”

Yi Feng angrily shouted. “Since you are the Master of this villa, why don’t you unmask yourself and be a real man!”

The masked man said. “The Ghastly Beggars are renowned in the Martial Fraternity. Why don’t take a seat inside?”

The Ghastly Beggars was startled. They found this voice quite familiar but they did not know who was it.

The man said. “If we have anything to say, please have a seat first! I feel honor that I have friends coming over from beyond the Pass to my villa!”

Yi Feng coldly said, “Rubbish aside, we are here for someone!”

The masked man laughed aloud. “Brother Yi, you are so impatience. Why don’t have a small banquet first and we can have a nice chat over it to talk over the past!”

The Ghastly Beggars were even more startled. This voice was really familiar and he seemed to know Yi Feng! But still they did not know who was he.

Song Zhong laughed aloud. “Since you are acquaintance to us, why don’t you remove your mask so that we can know who you are!”

The man laughed again. “Taking off my mask is not a difficult thing. But the time has not come yet. So I beg for your forgiveness as I cannot do as you request!”

Yi Feng laughed. “Only those guilty ones in the world dare not show their face. I think you have done too many guilty things therefore you are masked now!”

The masked man said solemnly as he looked at his men. “We have honored guests now, where are the wines and dishes for our guests?”

Yi Feng said. “My brothers and I have come from afar to rescue my sister and Tianshan Divine Sword Di Yang who have been captured by Shuai Tianfan’s men. At this moment of time, I am worry for my sister so how would I have the mood to feast! If you have the mood, why don’t you release my sister and Di Yang first. Then when my worries have dissipated, I can even drink and feast the whole night with you!”

The masked man laughed. “Does Brother Yi wants me to release Maiden Yi so that she could follow you back to beyond the Pass?”

Yi Feng replied. “That is for sure!”

The masked man raised a cup of wine and said. “What if Maiden Yi refuses to go with you?”

Yi Feng cried out. “Laudable! Yi Luo and I are flesh and blood, how will she not go with me!”

The masked man said. “She is living here comfortably. And we are serving her like she is a queen. How will she want to go back to beyond the Pass to endure the chilling snow!”

Yi Feng coldly said. “Don't be too sure!”

Song Zhong laughed. “Although the Ghastly Beggars are famous for begging but outside the Pass, we are like kings and have wealth that can equal a kingdom! Compare to us, this little villa is like a small house facing a big house!”

The masked man laughed aloud. “I am afraid your big house is now burned to ashes now!”

Song Zhong laughed aloud. “Who you think we Ghastly Beggars are? That we will bow to your threats!”

The masked man said. “I am just stating facts. There is really no need for me to use threats.”

Yi Feng shouted. “Rubbish aside! Hand over my sister now and then we can chat! Or else, heng… heng…”

The masked man said. “Why are you so impatience, Brother Yi? We are old friends and you have once saved my life before. I should really toast you gladly with three cups of wine instead. It not too later if we were to discuss this matter!”

He paused awhile adding. “I only know that the Ghastly Beggars are all frank heroes but today I am greatly disappointed!”

Song Zhong asked. “What do you mean by that?”

The masked man said, “I have to prepare a feast for all of you in the middle of the night but instead of thanking me, you are all suspecting whether the wine and dishes have been poisoned! Isn’t it too ungracious towards me!”

Song Zhong laughed a few times before he picked the cup in front of him and drink it! “You are too harsh in your comments!”

The masked man laughed. “Brother Song, you are indeed the leader of the Ghastly Beggars, such heroic display!”

Yi Feng interrupted. “Before I can see my sister, I swear I will never touch the wine!”

The masked man laughed. “If you want to see your sister, how difficult can it be!” He clapped his hands and shouted aloud. “Please invite Maiden Yi Luo to see the guests!”

Mi Baixiang bowed respectfully and walked off.

After awhile, there was a ‘dinging’ sound as Yi Luo made an appearance in beautiful gowns and garments!

She looked serene, tidy and her countenance was bright. There was not even a trace that she had been a prisoner!

Yi Feng shouted. “Sister Luo!”

Yi Luo looked at him with her watery eyes but there was no hint of any siblings’ affection. She simply walked behind the masked man and smiled at the man instead.

The entire Ghastly Beggars were stunned. Yi Feng was even more startled as he trembling shouted. “Sister Luo! Don’t you recognize your brother anymore?”

Yi Luo smiled serenely. “You are my big brother, how will I not know you!” Yi Feng was now very worried for her and added. “I am here to save you

now!” Yi Luo simply said. “I am doing very well here. I do not need big brother to save me…”

Yi Feng grasped. “Don’t you wish to go back to the Ghastly Manor?”

Yi Luo laughed. “This place isn’t too bad comparing to the Ghastly Manor!” Yi Feng grasped aloud. “Sister Luo! Are you crazy!”

Yi Luo said plainly. “Who say I am crazy? Heng! I have other things to do, forgive me for not accompanying you!” And she walked away with Yi Feng still calling out for her name.

Yi Feng was about to spring toward her when Song Zhong pulled him back and solemnly said. “Calm down first, Brother Feng. There are more than meet the eye in this matter!”

Yi Feng turned to face the masked man. “You! You! …What manner of a drug did you administrate to make her lose her senses!”

The masked man laughed clearly. “She is very clear minded. What makes you think she is drugged?”

Song Zhong rose up and solemnly said, “I am really impressed by your ability to divide them. Why don’t you remove your mask so that we can know who you are!”

The masked man said. “If you insist, I will just have to compel with your wishes!” And he took off his black veil that was on his face!

All of the Ghastly Beggars were shocked to see his face! Song Zhong grasped loudly. “You! You are Di Yang!”

Di Yang faintly smiled and said. “That is right! I am indeed Di Yang!”

Yi Feng shouted angrily as he spat in anger. “You heartless cad! What an ungrateful cad you are! Return my sister to me!’

Di Yang coldly said. “I am already the owner of this villa, how can I allow you to be so bold here!”

Song Zhong interrupted. “Is that why you want to use a black veil to cover your face!?” And he started to plunge forward with his fists up!

Di Yang did not move, instead he pressed his chair with both of his hands as the chair and him sunk into the floor!

Suddenly walls slammed down all over the hall!

Song Zhong shouted angrily. “Now it terrible! We have actually fallen into a

trap!”

They started to inspect their surrounding. The walls were all very thick and

made of iron. There was only a small hole at the side of the hall.

Yi Feng sighed. “The Ghastly Beggars have always been a merry lot in the Pugilist. Never did I expect that we will be trapped here!”

Song Zhong sighed. “The sides of the walls are several inches thick. Even with a precious sword, it is hard to slash it! Moreover we have no iron objects upon us! Alas! It seems that if we were to escape from here tonight, it will be as hard as ascending the heavens!”

A figure sprang very fast into the Southern Mountains Villa! In a twinkle of an eye, he had sprung past three houses and was now on the rooftop of the biggest house!

The moonlight shone on his lonely face and his eyes that looked like two twinkle stars! He was indeed Nangong Ping!

Suddenly he was startled by a windforce and he turned his body back and he saw a middle age man in black robe with a pale face standing behind him! He did not know when this man had arrived!

The man smiled and said. “I wonder what brings you here in the middle of the night?”

Nangong Ping coldly said. “I am Nangong Ping and who are you?” The man replied with both of his hands together in respect. “I am Mi

Baixiang. I am the steward here acting under the orders of my Master to await you!”

Nangong Ping asked. “Who is your Master?” Mi Baixiang said. “You will soon know!”

Nangong Ping had already been prepared to enter the tiger den therefore he said coldly. “Please lead the way then!”

They went into a great hall through a small door and saw a man with a black veil laughed. “Brother Nangong! I have long been waiting for you!”

Nangong Ping had thought this voice to be familiar but he did not know who he was so he asked. “Just who are you?”

Di Yang laughed aloud. “It had been just a few days, doesn’t Brother Nangong recognizes me anymore?” And he removed his black veil!

Never did Nangong Ping dream that this man would be Di Yang! Upon seeing his old friend, he was very startled and happy. And he walked in front and gripped both his hands. “Brother Di! It is you!”

Di Yang patted Nangong Ping on his shoulder and laughed. “You have never expected it right!”

Nangong Ping said, “Indeed! Not even in my dreams! But…this isn’t possible!”

Di Yang asked. “How come?”

Nangong Ping questioned. “Aren’t you and maiden Yi been captured by Ren Fengping? How did you become the owner of Southern Mountains Villa?” Di Yang just laughed and did not reply.

Nangong Ping asked again. “Then where is Maiden Yi and Maiden Ye now?”

Di Yang laughed. “They are now having a good dream at the moment!”

Nangong Ping shook his head and asked. “Brother Di! What is going on around here?”

Di Yang said, “This Southern Mountains Villa has now belonged to me!

Now that you have come, we can now discuss a grand plan!” Nangong Ping asked. “What grand plan?”

Di Yang said aloud. “This is the grand plan of Mister Shuai – To dominate the Martial Fraternity!”

Nangong Ping was startled. “Brother Di! Are you crazy?”

Di Yang laughed aloud. “My mind is still very clear at the moment! I am not in the least crazy!”

Nangong Ping had a jolt in his head and he regained his composure. He asked. “Brother Di! Did you really join Shuai Tianfan’s organization?”

Di Yang said aloud. “You know that I never lies!”

Nangong Ping coldly said, “Then, what about Maiden Yi and Maiden Ye?”

Di Yang laughed. “Both of them have joined with Mister Shuai as well. You don’t have to worry!”

Nangong Ping angrily resorted. “Rubbish!” Di Yang said, “I did not lie to you!”

Nangong Ping thought. “A frank and straightforward person like Di Yang will actually join Shuai Tianfan. Then it means that Yi Luo and Ye Manqing who are women and have weaker willpower will surely succumb too. I wonder what magic did that Shuai Tianfan use to control them!”

Before he had finished thinking, there was laughter that came from a man that had just walked into the hall. Nangong Ping lifted his head to saw a short man with a big head.

But when Di Yang and Mi Baixiang saw the man, their expressions changed and they bowed respectfully at him. “Big Brother Tang!”

That Big Brother Tang nodded and he looked extremely haughty as he walked towards Nangong Ping!

Nangong Ping thought. “From his haughty looks, his powerful steps and that Di Yang and Mi Baixiang accorded him with much respect, he must be someone very important!”

Big Brother Tang asked him. It was obvious that he had looked down upon him. “Are you Nangong Ping?”

Nangong Ping replied nonchalantly. “Indeed I am Nangong Ping. And who may you be!”

‘Big Brother Tang’ laughed aloud. “You don’t even know Tang Huan of the ‘Four Swords of the Life Stealing Mystery Wind’?”

Nangong Ping thought. “All the right hand men of Shuai Tianfan like Ren Fengping, Ge Zhonghai and this Tang Huan are all in Jiangnan. I wonder what is going to happen soon!”

Tang Huan replied, “Mister Shuai will like me to invite Nangong Ping to join with us!”

Nangong Ping laughed. “I have no talent to contribute. How will I dare to!”

Tang Huan angrily said. “You don’t know what is good for you! Do you think I cannot capture you?”

Nangong Ping laughed coldly. “I afraid just you alone is impossible!” Tang Huan shouted aloud and then extended his right hand to impact upon

Nangong Ping.

Not wishing to display any sign of weakness, Nangong Ping extended a hand

too.

There was a thunderous clap, and both of them were forced to move back

three steps!

Tang Huan shouted. “Rascal! You indeed have some prowess! Why don’t you receive another impact again!” He extended both his hands in front of his chest.

Nangong Ping knew that he must be using all his strength for this blow, therefore he did not dare to be careless and he started to gather all his energy to his diaphragm pressure point and then released all twelve folds of his strength with both his hands!

There was another thunderous clap! Once again, both of them were pushed three steps backward! It was obvious that their internal strength were about the same, it was difficult to know who was better!

Tang Huan expressions changed for he was very startled. He had never expected a junior like Nangong Ping would have such a pure internal strength!

Nangong Ping was as composed as ever and he laughed coldly at Tang Huan. “I didn’t expect that the famous Four Swords of the Life Stealing Mystery Wind is only so and so!”

Tang Huan coldly said. “If we cannot determine a winner in internal strength, why don’t we fight it out with weapons! Kid, draw your sword!”

Nangong Ping faintly smiled and then drew the Fallen Autumn Leaf!

Tang Huan then drew a bendable long sword from his waist! This long sword of his was very long, thin and its edges were not sharp. The tip of his long sword was black while the rest of the blade was white. Nangong Ping attacked with a stance the ‘Golden Dragon Piercing Armor’ but Tang Huan evaded it. As he did not wish to lose his first opportunity of attack, he continued with the Sixteen stances of the Heavenly Dragon! His attacks were all very swift and accurate!

Tang Huan was startled and shifted to pierce Nangong Ping on his Qu Chi! But Nangong Ping evaded it and retaliated with five other attacking strokes and forced him to back off three steps!

Suddenly Tang Huan changed his stance, he began to blend his sword over and flick it! As his sword was longer and this flick caused Nangong Ping to lose his attack advantage!

Suddenly with a shout, Tang Huan and Nangong Ping had both impacted both their swords tip together! As Nangong Ping and his internal strength were the same as Tang Huan, he found himself unable to break off the contact!

Tang Huan smiled cockily. “Throw away your sword!” Nangong Ping replied with pride. “Not necessary!”

But just when Nangong Ping had mouthed ‘Necessary’, Tang Huan sword tip broke free of the tip of his sword and was hitting his face! Nangong Ping was very startled and then summoned his strength to move backward hastily and Fallen Autumn Leaf could not withstand the impact of all the internal strength, it started to blend! In split second, he did a double flinch and kick towards Tang Huan who moved back three steps again!

Then Nangong Ping stomped on Fallen Autumn Leaf with his leg and it was straightened again!

After fighting for awhile, Tang Huan on seeing that he could not gain an advantage over Nangong Ping, ordered Di Yang and Mi Baixiang to join in the fray when he was once again pushed back another five steps!

After six strokes, Nangong Ping was already feeling tired and now he was just defending without any opportunity to retaliate against the combined attacks of Tang Huan, Di Yang and Mi Baixiang!

Suddenly, two beautiful voices were heard as Ye Manqing and Yi Luo had suddenly sprang into the hall and without a word, started to attack Nangong Ping fiercely!

Nangong Ping shouted. “Maiden Ye! Maiden Yi! Don’t you recognize that I am Nangong Ping anymore?”

Yi Luo grasped. “No matter who you are, as owners of this Southern Mountain villas, we will not allow you to be amok here!”

Nangong Ping grasped. “Why don’t all of you hear my explanations?”

Ye Manqing coldly said, “There is nothing to explain! Surrender your life!” When she finished, she exhibited the unique stance of Mistress Shi Zhu, Danfeng’s epitome techniques and started to slash at Nangong Ping repeatedly!

Di Yang shouted too and joined in the fray!

The three of them were attacking like they were crazy, they had no regard on their personal safety – Their attacks were all out with no defense.

How could Nangong Ping bear to use his best stances against three of his very best friends? At the same time, he could not leave too! He had no choice but to use his Mentor Master’s techniques, and to focus on defense and not attack!

Although Nangong Ping had extraordinary martial skills but he was unable to use any of it. Fifty strokes later, he was forced back to the middle of the great hall. He had spent the whole night to run here and then after half a night of fighting, although his internal strength was still bursting with strength but his vital strength had already been expended by half! And he was so tired now and sweating profusely.

Now even his parries were slower a lot and he was slowly unable to hold on anymore…

After a great deal of thoughts and trying several methods, the Ghastly Beggars were still unable to find a way to escape from their surrounding. Every one of them was haggard and anxious now!

Suddenly there was a sound from the top as one of iron walls began to move and all the Ghastly Beggars lifted their heads to look. Then some one threw a rope!

Song Zhong was naturally delightful and he hastily said. “Now is the chance for us to escape, let us all hurry!”

Everyone sprang up on the rope dexterously and in a few moment times, they exited out of the hall. And they saw a middle age man with a pale face standing at the secret passage!

Song Zhong did not know who this stranger was but he knew that they were saved by this man! Therefore he placed his hands together to bow and then said. “We are grateful for you to lend us a helping hand, this piece of gratuitous is as heavy as the mountain! Allow me to bow to you!”

At the same, the rest of the Ghastly Beggars had all escaped through the hole and were gathering behind Song Zhong.

Yi Feng walked astride to the front and said. “The Ghastly Beggars have never received any aid from any one, not even half a bit. But tonight…”

Before he could finish, the middle age man coldly interrupted. “I am under the instruction of the Heavenly Crow Priest to save you all from danger. If you want to thank me, you should go and thanks the Heavenly Crow Priest and not me!” Yi Feng muttered. “Heavenly Crow Priest…Heavenly Crow Priest…we do not know him at all!”

The middle age man said, “But no matter whether if you know him or not, I have a request!”

Song Zhong hurriedly asked. “Please tell us! If it is within our means, even if we were to brave the burning fires, we will do it!”

The middle age man said, “Do you know Nangong Ping?”

Song Zhong shook his head while Yi Feng said, “I have met him once before.”

The middle age man said, “He is now in grave danger! But because he and I have some grudges before, it is really not convenient for me to reveal my identity to save him. Therefore I have to borrow your strength!” And he began to tremble before continuing. “Do you know who I am?”

Song Zhong shook his head and said. “We do not know!”

The man said, “I am the real owner of this South Mountains Villa!” Everyone was startled and surprised.

Song Zhong said. “This…this…this…” After saying for quite some time, he still could not manage to complete the sentence!

The middle age man became very solemn and said. “I have other matters awaiting me. So it not convenient for me to stay here any longer. But please do not forget my request!”

Yi Feng asked. “Where is Nangong Ping now?”

The man took out a letter and handed it over to Song Zhong and said. “He is now facing a difficult battle at the great hall in front of this building. Please hand this letter over to him and after he has read it, protect him till he can leave this place! Now that I have finished all that I have to say, I have to leave now. I am grateful to everyone of you for rendering assistance to him!” When he had finished, he sprang away!

Who was this strange middle age man? He was seen muttering. “There are some people in the entire life, who in their daily lives and in all matters try to do good, did not dare even to do a single wrong thing. But once they did something wrong once, they immediately become a great sinner. There are some people who are villainous but in a coincidence did a good deed and immediately people forgive all their past doings…”

He was none other than the ‘Gentleman Swordsman’ Ye Liu Ge. Because he was once tempted by lust and tried to rape Mei Yinxue, he lost the chance to be a loving couple with her and even spread all sorts of malicious rumors about her.

That was the single greatest mistake of his life!

Song Zhong and Yi Feng looked at one another and shouted aloud. “Let us go now!”

In the great hall, Nangong Ping was sweating profusely and he could barely hold on any longer. Di Yang, Yi Luo and Ye Manqing were pushing him to a corner!

Suddenly there was a great shout as Yi Feng sprang into the hall and with a stance ‘Clouds of Shackles that Bind the Mountain’ with his bamboo staff, fended off Di Yang from Nangong Ping.

Next, Song Zhong sprang into the hall and attacked Ye Manqing with his bamboo staff!

Nangong Ping was very relieved as the pressure that were piling upon him just moments ago instantly vanished! And so he took a breather.

Even as Song Zhong was fighting Ye Manqing, he had taken the letter to the front of Nangong Ping and said. “Take this letter!”

Nangong Ping was very startled to see this strange request but he took the letter nevertheless and at the same time fended off Yi Luo fierce attacks!

At this moment, the rest of the Ghastly Beggars entered the hall and two of them hit Yi Luo on her ‘Drowse’ and ‘Sleep’ accupoints as well as other parts of her body that could not hurt her!

The cocky Tang Huan and Mi Baixiang upon seeing the Ghastly Beggars charged into the hall were greatly startled and immediately they began to attack the Ghastly Beggars. Joining the fray were the rest of their men in black, wielding sabres or swords. And now the entire hall was in a state of confusion and messy fights!

Song Zhong shouted to Nangong Ping as he held off Di Yang. “Hurry and tear the letter and see what is written on it!”

Although there were fighting all around him, he still managed to tear the letter and read it. On the letter were the words – Your parents are in grave danger now and they would possibly die anytime. Hurry with great haste to Taihu Lake to the Liuyin Manor. If you are late, the worse can happen, so hurry! Wan Da had signed the letter!

After he had finished reading it, he did not believe the letter to be real but he did recognize Wan Da unique style of writing. Would Wan Da try to trick him?

For a moment, he was too engrossed to do anything!

Song Zhong interrupted his thoughts by shouting. “What is written on the letter that caused you to ponder? Hurry and leave this place. What are you waiting for? If you do not leave now, it may be too late later!”

Nangong Ping was jolted and he asked. “Who gives this letter to you?” Song Zhong had just managed to repulse Ye Manqing beautiful attacking strokes with three stances of continuous staff display. Making use of this breather, he replied. “It is from a middle age man with a stiff expressions!”

Nangong Ping furrowed in thoughts before he asked. “Do you know his name?”

Song Zhong said. “He did not say his name but he said he was sent by a Heavenly Crow Priest!”

When Nangong Ping heard the name of the Heavenly Crow Priest, his expressions changed! That was because the Heavenly Crow Priest was Wan Da!

Now Nangong Ping was even more worried and shouted. “Thanks everyone for rendering aid! This, I, Nangong Ping will never forget! But now I have something very important, please forgive me for leaving first!”

Song Zhong said. “Don’t say so much, hurry and go!”

Without much ado, Nangong Ping sprang towards the entrance of the hall!

But how could Tang Huan allow him to leave just like this? So he sprang in pursue of Nangong Ping but was forced to move back by the Ghastly Beggars who were all top exponents!

Di Yang started to shout. “Don’t let him escape!”

And a group of men in black began to block Nangong Ping! But because Nangong Ping was now full of worries, he did not hesitate anymore and his malevolent air was lifted and those men that had blocked him started to scream as he cut through them with the brilliant light of the Fallen Autumn Leaf!

And so Nangong Ping managed to leave the hall that was still in a state of utter confusion and out of the Southern Mountains Villa!