The Glory After Rebirth is a web novel produced by 怀若谷, Huai Ruogu.
This lightnovel is presently Ongoing.
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Chapter 184: On Your Knees
At this moment, Zhang Liu felt an urge to hit his head hard on a wall to punish himself. Had he known earlier that they would encounter Yuwen Qi and people of Su family in the Taibai Tavern, he would never have let Ling Zhang come.
Ling Zhang softly threw a quick glance at him and asked, “Why are you being so anxious?”
It was not until this moment that Tao Yi finally came to sense that something was not quite right with the mood at the table. “What’s going on?”
Ling Zhang smiled, “Nothing.”
But Tao Yi had a thoughtful expression on his face. He tossed a look at the landing, pondered for a few moments and remarked, “Let’s go to the book market for a walk. There happens to be some books I need to buy, and you’ll have to go to the Imperial College soon. We can go there together and see if there are any books suitable for you.”
Ling Zhang gave a bob of the head. “That might not be a bad idea.”
Seeing the nervous face of Zhang Liu, Ling Zhang believed that if he sat here for a while longer, Zhang Liu’s anxiety would go above the threshold and reduce him to running to Yuwen Tong’s report.
The four of them left the Taibai Tavern together, heading for the book market in the third east alley.
On arriving at the book market, Zhang Liu secretly heaved a sigh of relief, feeling that he had rid himself of the risk of being punished after returning.
“Young Master, please slow down a little bit. You must stay close to us in a crowded place like this.” w.a.n.g Dashan, however, involuntarily tensed his back. There were too many people in the book market. Though at first glance all of them seemed to be students, crowdedness was synonymous with danger.
Tao Yi, after tossing a backward glance at w.a.n.g Dashan and Zhang Liu who were closely following in Ling Zhang’s wake, said to Ling Zhang, “These two bodyguards of yours are pretty conscientious in their work.”
Ling Zhang responded, “Elder Brother w.a.n.g is my bodyguard, but Guard Zhang is not. He’s just here to render me protection.”
After hearing this, Tao Yi craned over and asked under his breath, “Is he by any chance the Marshal’s bodyguard?”
Ling Zhang inclined his head.
Tao Yi cast another backward glance at Zhang Liu, who calmly looked back at him. Tao Yi immediately gave a smile at him. Zhang Liu fell speechless.
There were bookstores and book stands everywhere in the book market. Scents of ink and paper were mixing together, shrouding this place in an intense air typical of the literati.
Ling Zhang secretly sighed in sentiment. Except for some occasional short-time reading at night, from his last incarnation until the present day, he hadn’t done any serious reading for a long time. Speaking of which, he was actually somewhat worried that he might not be able to keep pace with the tempo of teaching of teachers in the Imperial College.
“I wonder what they teach in the Imperial College,” Ling Zhang said. Had he known, he could buy some books and start learning in advance.
Tao Yi knew something about it and recommended several books to Ling Zhang. Ling Zhang purchased them all.
Estimating that these might not be enough, he decided to consult with Yuwen Tong about hiring a private teacher to teach him after he returned.
Inside the Taibai Tavern.
“Let’s go out for a walk, cousin.” Su Yaoyao, standing beside the window of the private room, egged Yuwen Qi on to take her to the streets to stroll around.
Yuwen Qi responded, “My mother’s been expecting you at home. We’d be keeping her waiting if we go to the streets for a stroll.”
A disappointed look appeared on Su Yaoyao’s face. “Fine.”
Yuwen Qi’s heart ached as he saw the disappointment on her face, so he said, “Just a while then. After that, we go back.”
“Great! Thank you, cousin!” Su Yaoyao said delightedly.
The look in Yuwen Qi’s eyes briefly changed as he saw a happy smile light up Su Yaoyao’s pretty face.
“Yaoyao, did your mother mention how long you’re allowed to stay in my home?”
Su Yaoyao answered, “My mother just told me to spend as much time as possible with my aunt. She didn’t say anything else.”
“I’m sure my mother will be very happy to hear this. She’s been talking a lot about wanting to see you recently,” commented Yuwen Qi. Of course, her mother had, inevitably, mentioned another person when talking about Su Yaoyao, the thought of which made Yuwen Qi’s face fell slightly sullen.
Su Yaoyao observed happily, “I always know that aunt is the kindest to me.”
“What about me?” Yuwen Qi looked at her.
Su Yaoyao immediately replied, “You’re also the kindest to me, cousin.”
“That’s the answer I want to hear,” said Yuwen Qi.
As the conversation was steered to the topic of things in Yuwen family, Su Yaoyao recalled something and faintly flushed. There seemed to be a particular question she would like to ask Yuwen Qi, but eventually, she swallowed back the words on the tip of her tongue in embarra.s.sment. “Cousin, I’d like to go to the Jinyu Fang and take a look.”
“All right. I’ll go there with you.”
At this time, Ling Zhang and Tao Yi were still shopping in the book market. w.a.n.g Dashan had already had a high stack of books in his arms.
Ling Zhang, who saw this as he twisted his head back, hurriedly halted and remarked, “Elder Brother Tao, I think these are enough. If we buy any more books, Elder Brother w.a.n.g and Guard Zhang won’t be able to carry them for us.”
Tao Yi gave a bob of the head. “Okay. Let’s go. There’s a teahouse outside this book market. We may have some rest there.”
Ling Zhang, who had observed the terrain of this book market on their way, queried Tao Yi, “Is this place filled with shoppers every day?”
“Yeah. There are several book markets of considerable scale in this city. This one in the third east alley is one of the two largest. In addition, this place is actually not far away from the Imperial College, so many people come here to buy books.”
“The Imperial College?”
Tao Yi pointed in the direction of the college, where high garrets and cornices could be vaguely seen. “It’s right there.”
Ling Zhang gauged the approximate location of it and lodged it in his mind.
‘So many people come to this place every day. Is it advisable to buy a property nearby and open a drugstore? But almost all people coming here are students. These people are probably only interested in books and may not necessarily pay any attention to a drugstore. I should give this some more thought…’
While he was thinking, the four of them had walked out of the book market and turned into the street where the teahouse Tao Yi had mentioned was. This street was slightly broader than the one the book market was on. Apart from a teahouse, Ling Zhang also saw plenty of jewelry stores. ‘It seem that this is also an area for jewelry merchants and antiquarians. It’s indeed not the right place to open a drugstore,’ Ling Zhang thought.
The four of them were just about to cross the street to go to the teahouse when a horse-drawn carriage drove around the corner.
Ling Zhang didn’t pay any special attention. He merely tossed a quick glance at it and then paused.
This was so coincidental. They encountered that horse-drawn carriage of Su family once again. If he saw right, it was the very carriage parked in front of the Taibai Tavern previously. There were guards and maidservants following in its wake, which was sheer ostentation and extravagance.
“Eek? Will we never be rid of them?” Tao Yi also noticed the carriage.
Zhang Liu appeared as if he were faced with a formidable enemy. Seeing the carriage heading their way, he was only too anxiously to rush over, push it back into the alley and make sure it never came out.
They were just about to go to the teahouse when the horse-drawn carriage drove over and blocked their path. It seemed that the destination of pa.s.sengers inside the carriage was the Jinyu Fang on the side, which was why the carriage was parked there blocking the street.
Yuwen Qi jumped off the carriage and saw Ling Zhang at a glance. With that, his countenance instantly changed. “It’s you?”
“Who is it, cousin?” Su Yaoyao got out of the carriage. Seeing the look on Yuwen Qi’s face was not quite right, she turned around in confusion and her eyes raked Ling Zhang and other three.
“A sparrow wis.h.i.+ng to fly onto a high branch to become a phoenix,” replied Yuwen Qi flintily.
On hearing this, Ling Zhang felt an urge to roll his eyes upwards. ‘What kind of lousy metaphor is this? Yuwen Tong is not an emperor. How can I possibly become a ‘phoenix’ by marrying him? Besides, I’m a man. This whole ‘phoenix’ thing is nothing but bulls.h.i.+t,’ he thought.
The very sight of Yuwen Qi made him bored. Ling Zhang, who couldn’t be bothered to make a reply, said to Tao Yi, “Let’s just ignore him and go.”
“Ling Zhang!” However, Yuwen Qi was agitated by the indifferent look on Ling Zhang’s face. He flied into a temper and let out a cry. “Now you know you don’t have the nerve to show your face now? It didn’t cross your mind that you’d be reduced to this situation when you swaggered around in my home yesterday, did it? Now you want to leave?”
On hearing Yuwen Qi’s remarks, those guards instantly gathered around.
Seeing this, Tao Yi stepped to the front of Ling Zhang and said disgustedly, “What do you think you are doing, Yuwen Qi? You want to a.s.sault us on a street? Have you no shame?”
Ling Zhang was briefly surprised as Tao Yi hurried to his protection. He raised his hand and patted Tao Yi on the shoulder. “This is between me and him. You should stay out of this. Otherwise your name might end up on the target list of that rabid dog.”
Tao Yi refused to move, believing that Yuwen Qi harbored evil intentions.
“You think I can’t see you when you’re hiding behind someone else’s back? Weren’t you pretty c.o.c.ky when my cousin was by your side? Now you’re afraid? Let me tell you something. You need to get back to Tanyang immediately, otherwise I’ll break your legs where you stand and you’ll be confined to bed for the rest of your life.” Yuwen Qi walked over and stared at Ling Zhang, a ferocious look in his eyes.
Yuwen Qi had been harboring grudges against Ling Zhang due to the humiliation inflicted on him in Tanyang that day. On top of that, after Yuwen Tong gave him a kick the day before, he had been consumed with anger all along. Therefore, seeing Yuwen Tong was no longer by Ling Zhang’s side, he was unable to subdue his rage and all he wanted to do was beat Ling Zhang up.
Ling Zhang held Tao Yi’s arm, put forth some of his strength and, giving Tao Yi no chance to speak, drew Tao Yi aside, stepped forward and coldly looked at Yuwen Qi, “Those are quite some big words, Second Childe Yuwen. I’m not going back to Tanyang. What are you going to do about it?”
“Then I’ll beat you until you beg me to stop!” Yuwen Qi smiled sinisterly with a sullen face.
“Then do it. I’d like to find out whether you’d be able to survive tomorrow after beating me today,” commented Ling Zhang frostily.
“That’s ridiculous. Your life is of no more value than that of an ant. You think I’d have to pay with my life after beating you to death? Stop dreaming,” Yuwen Qi responded. With a wave of his hand, those guards around them started closing in on them.
w.a.n.g Dashan immediately stepped forward and thundered, “How dare you! The Marshal will not let you get away with it even if you touch a single hair of my young master!”
“The Marshal? I don’t believe Yuwen Tong would still have his eye on you after I disable you. Boys, teach him a lesson!” Yuwen Qi instructed.
“Stop!” Zhang Liu cried flintily and exerted his internal energy on the guards around them, deterring them from getting closer.
“Childe Qi, I advise you not to be so slow-witted as to make trouble for Childe Ling. Otherwise the Marshal will make you pay for it even though you are a member of Yuwen family.”
“Who the h.e.l.l do you think you are? How dare you threaten me!” Yuwen Qi was consumed with anger.
“You are utterly impervious to reason. Younger Brother Zhang is Marshal Yuwen’s betrothed, and his grandfather once saved your grandfather’s life, yet this is how Yuwen family is supposed to treat him? Now I see the true colors of you. You are an absolute disgrace to Marshal Yuwen. You are ruining Marshal Yuwen’s reputation! Marshal Yuwen is the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces of the Great Yue, the incarnation of the G.o.d of War in the Great Yue. How come he has family members like you people? This is unbelievably disappointing. You people are utterly unworthy of being Marshal Yuwen’s family!” Tao Yi, angered by Yuwen Qi’s conduct, flushed scarlet, glaring at Yuwen Qi as if he were an enemy who owed him a huge debt of blood. He could barely keep from rus.h.i.+ng over to eliminate this degenerate for Marshal Yuwen.
“What did you say?!” Yuwen Qi raged, slowly stressing each syllable, and his face instantly went murderous. “Who the f.u.c.k do you think you are?! You are in no position to speak! Guards! Beat this talky fly to death!”
“Guard Zhang, restrain Yuwen Qi and bring him to me,” Ling Zhang said frostily, his fists clenched.
Zhang Liu gave a bob of his head. None of the others saw exactly how he did it, but when they were about to react, Yuwen Qi had already been brought to the front of Ling Zhang by Zhang Liu.
Yuwen Qi was taken aback. “You G.o.dd.a.m.n flunkey! Let go of me! What do you think you are doing?!”
“On your knees.”
Ling Zhang coldly walked over and gave the hollow of Yuwen Qi’s knee a hard kick. With that, Yuwen Qi’s legs buckled and he slumped to his knees.
Instantly, a deathly hush descended over the whole street.
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