Chapter 16 - Sai Gao“s Warning
“Do you like it? I’ve just finished renovating this place a few days ago, and you’re my very first guest,” Sai Gao’s voice came from behind. Shao Xian turned around, only to see that he had began changing himself and had already removed all of his clothing except for his underwear.
Before she could turn around in embarrassment, Shao Xian noticed Sai Gao wearing extremely tight pink thongs. ‘Pink thongs?’
“The bedsheets are new. You can sleep over there. I’ll sleep on the ground with Li Yiming.” Sai Gao walked toward the sofa after putting a silk robe on himself.
‘Wow…’ Shao Xian looked at Sai Gao in wonderment.
“Come now, don’t just stand there, come try this out.” Sai Gao picked up a bag of face masks from the table and gave one to Shao Xian.
“This is…? Oh...” Shao Xian picked up the face mask and put it carefully on her face.
Sai Gao let out a long sigh and suddenly said, “Have you never put on a face mask before? You need to put the mask from down to up. Otherwise, you won’t get the benefits. You’ll regret it when the wrinkles around your eyes come out in a few years.” Sai Gao approached Shao Xian, carefully removed her face mask and put it back on the correct way.
Shao Xian was once again taken aback by the fact that Sai Gao’s expertise about cosmetics far exceeded her own, despite the fact that her job consisted mainly of appealing to esthetics.
‘Is he really… a man?’ Shao Xian was only able to confirm his sex after noticing his chest being entirely flat from peeking between his collar.
Li Yiming was completely speechless by what he saw the moment he entered through the window to the balcony. The pink-themed decoration was certainly eye-catching, but the half-naked man on the sofa wearing nothing but a silk robe was a little too much.
“Shh… She’s asleep…” Sai Gao pointed at Shao Xian.
Shao Xian was sleeping on a sofa with the face mask still on her face. She was wrapped in a layer of blankets and breathed slowly.
“She must be tired.” Li Yiming walked toward the balcony again.
“Heaven’s Laws are after you?” Sai Gao asked.
“Late to the party, aren’t you?” Li Yiming joked.
“Didn’t get the invitation in the first place.” A box of cigarettes appeared in Sai Gao’s hand and he offered it to Li Yiming.
“Well, that’s a pain…” Li Yiming took one out and returned the package to Sai Gao.
“I’m sorry about this…” Sai Gao shook his head.
“Don’t worry about it. Even without you, it would only be a matter of time.”
“Are you really him?” Sai Gao lit up Li Yiming’s cigarette with a small flame that appeared at the tip of his fingers.
“I don’t really know…” Li Yiming took a deep whiff and exhaled slowly.
“What do you plan on doing from now? I’ve seen Liu Meng and the others…” Sai Gao said as he leaned against the fence.
“Heart Trial Punishment?”
“Punishment created exclusively by Heaven’s Laws… Sorry…” Sai Gao scratched his head in frustration.
“Don’t worry, we’ll figure something out.” As much as Li Yiming wanted to bring up the morale, he was just as discouraged as Sai Gao was.
“What about the other guardians? Any contact?”
“A few of them showed up, but no action so far. They’re probably making preparations. Seems like I’ve got quite the reputation.”
“Are you planning on continuing to hide?” Sai Gao asked.
“What are your thoughts?” Li Yiming said.
“Staying on defense isn’t the most viable option. You can’t stay here and just wait.”
Li Yiming waited patiently for the follow-up — Sai Gao was always one to come up with brilliant ideas.
“Well, rather than remaining passive, you can take the initiative,” Sai Gao proposed.
“What do you mean? Are you saying I should kill them?” Li Yiming was unwilling to accept such a preposterous proposal, as there were countless guardians who were after him.
“That’s not what I’m saying. What I mean is that you can simply stop hiding. The people who are after you are not all best friends, after all.”
“You mean creating chaos?”
“Yes. The people after you have their limitations, but you don’t.”
“But Liu Meng…?” Li Yiming was considering Sai Gao’s suggestion, but he did not want to harm any of his friends either.
“It’s the same for Liu Meng. They’re under the influence of Heaven’s Laws itself. They’ll be even more wary of overusing their powers in our world. I’m sure you can force a retreat if you bluff correctly,” Sai Gao said.
“I’ll need to bluff them?”
“Yes. How confident are you about this?”
“If it were a few days ago, very. But now…” Li Yiming said dejectedly after remembering he had lost all of his sage powers.
Sai Gao stayed silent. He misunderstood Li Yiming’s statement as not having the confidence to face Heaven’s Punishment.
“What are you going to do about Shao Xian?” Li Yiming changed the subject.
“We’ll see soon enough.” Sai Gao turned toward Shao Xian and his gaze went cold. He knew that the innocent-looking girl was the one who could bring the worst of all surprises.
* * *
As Sai Gao and Li Yiming were discussing their plans, a woman wearing an elegant traditional dress pushed another young woman, who sat on a wheelchair, out of the airport.
Tian Yan looked at the sky with her pale irises and exclaimed. “Didn’t think that we’d be back this quickly…”
Tian Yan’s remark went unanswered.
“I want to have a look back at home,” Tian Yan said in a low voice.
“I’ll have Qian Mian go with you. This city isn’t so peaceful right now.” Stargazed nodded and signaled the lean man behind her.
Qian Mian walked forward and put his hands on the handles behind the wheelchair.
“Be careful,” Qian Mian said to Stargaze. The latter smiled back at him.
As Qian Mian and Tian Yan left, Stargaze’s smile vanished. She re-entered the airport, went to the second floor, and stopped at the entrance to the smoking-room with a frown.
“Are you looking for me?” Stargaze closed the door to the smoking-room. Aside from herself, the only other occupant was a skinny man on his knees near the entrance.
“You’re looking for me.” Mr. Kong extinguished his cigarette, picked up his knit-bag and stared back at Stargaze.
Stargaze’s breathing quickened as she crossed eyes with Mr. Kong. She felt as if she was a prey standing in front of a beast with an insatiable thirst for blood.
“Tell me, what have you seen after all these years?” Mr. Kong asked.
“I…” Stargaze did not know how to answer.
“The stars have been gazing down upon this Earth for eons. Are you going to sit idle and watch as a new world is reborn?” Mr. Kong continued and stared into Stargaze’s eyes.
“No one can stay neutral forever. It’s time for you to pick a side.” Mr. Kong exited the smoking room while tapping the floor with the plastic bottle he held. Stargaze froze in place as she listened to the light tapping slowly fade away.
* * *
Fang Shui’er wandered around in the traffic aimlessly in her car. She stared at the endless flow of cars outside, lost in her own thoughts until she was interrupted by the flashing of the indicator on her cell phone.
“Where are we going? Mrs. Fang?” The driver did not want to disturb Fang Shui’er but the vehicle was soon about to run out of fuel.
“Let’s find a place to settle down. Call the organizers of the music festival on my behalf. I’ll accept their invitation on the condition that I decide the order of appearance. Also, I want a list of the names of every invited guest.” Fang Shui’er instructed.
“As you wish.” The assistant on the passenger’s seat answered reverently after noting down Fang Shui’er instructions.
“Divine Voice Materialized… Li Yiming…” Exhausted, Fang Shui’er closed her eyes.