Although Jiang Chen said that he wouldn’t inquire after the internal matters of the Dragonteeth Guard when he left and that this matter wasn’t over, all of this sounded like weak, superficial words to Lu Wuji’s ears.
If Jiang Chen really did have guts, he would have seized the best timing to lose his temper and make a scene immediately. When this timing was over and the matter had passed, who would pay attention to him, a foreign village buffoon even if he wanted to pursue it?
“He’s definitely a village buffoon from a small place. He has no guts at all. He scared me for no reason. Ah forget it, forget it. Although old man Zhou doesn’t like me, he has nothing on me with uncle there holding down the fort!”
Lu Wuji felt even more reassured when his thoughts traveled down this point. If it hadn’t been Zhou Kai holding the Dragontooth emblem in his hand, he likely would’ve immediately gotten up and swaggered out of the place.
Jiang Chen had somewhat surprised Lu Wuji in his lack of pursuing the matter immediately.
What was even more surprising was that even Zhou Kai didn’t seem to have the intention of pursuing this any further. He simply waved his hands, “Pray that this matter will be resolved easily in your favor!”
With that, Zhou Kai had actually left together with his team of wolves and tigers.
When Zhou Kai left with the Dragontooth emblem, Lu Wuji immediately revived with full blood and stood up dashingly, brushing the dust off his knees. “What bad luck to disturb the general director for such a minor, miniscule matter. It gave old man Zhou a chance to swagger around in borrowed influence and humiliate me. What bad luck!”
“General Lu.” His men, jittering with fear, drew near him.
“Look at all of you with your heads down. Did your mother or old man die or something? The matter’s already over, what are you doing with faces full of ugly expressions?” Lu Wuji cursed.
“General Lu, something’s not quite right here.”
“What’s not quite right? Old man Zhou must have been up to no good within this. What are you afraid of? With my uncle there, old man Zhou won’t be able to do much!” Lu Wuji didn’t care at all.
He immediately spoke through gritted teeth afterwards, “As for Jiang Chen, that dumb animal, how dare a village buffoon humiliate me? As long as you remain within the Skylaurel Kingdom, I will make sure you die a ghastly death!”
Although Lu Wuji had suffered no harm, he had originally held victory within his hands and had uttered all sorts of wild words. When it came to the final step, the situation had suddenly changed drastically and he’d fallen straight from heaven.
Jiang Chen, who’d been slated for death according to his words, had swaggered past him out of the place.
His heroic and proud words had turned into outrageous jokes.
Accustomed to acting however he wanted within the capital and commanding the wind and rain, exercising control over other people’s life and death, Lu Wuji deeply felt that this was shameful and a greatest affront to him.
“Ai, after going to all this trouble, that kid Jiang Chen still walked out of here alive. I still have to give the Northern Palace an explanation.”
Lu Wuji walked home with this irritated feeling.
When he was almost home, he suddenly felt that this matter should be explained to his uncle and immediately set off for the manor of Vice General Yang Zhao.
“What? Lu Wuji seeks an audience?” By this time, Yang Zhao had already received pressure from many sides and was being scorched by the flames. When he heard that Lu Wuji was asking to be received, he viciously threw the teacup in his hand onto the ground and broke out in large curses. “Does that idiot have the brains of a pig? How dare he come see me at this time?”
Although he was cursing madly, Lu Wuji was still his own nephew, and Yang Zhao had been taken care of by his sister since he was small. Since Lu Wuji was his sister’s only son, he basically treated Lu Wuji like his own son.
“Sir uncle, you must take action on your nephew’s behalf on account of my dearly departed mother!” Lu Wuji had long since gained a thorough understanding of his uncle Yang Zhao, and knew that if he cried, no matter how hard a heart his uncle had, it would soften for sure.
He had used this move several times over the years at critical moments and it had always proven useful.
Indeed, Yang Zhao had been filled with the fires of anger, but they all dissipated quickly when he saw Lu Wuji this way.
His nephew’s features still bore traces of his sister’s looks.
“Ai, Wuji, you really shouldn’t have come back this time.”
“Why?” Lu Wuji was startled. He hadn’t thought that his usually domineering uncle would voice such depressed words today.
“You mishandled a case. Even if they only charge you with dereliction of duty, you should’ve remained at the Dragonteeth Guard headquarters and awaited the investigation from above. But you swaggered back here. Tell me, how do you think the outside world will view this? You’re my nephew, but can you be pardoned just like this when you commit something wrong?”
Lu Wuji wasn’t a fool. He immediately understood the salient points that Yang Zhao pointed out.
Even if there wasn’t much problem with dereliction of duty, he still had to go through the protocol. Swaggering home like this would undoubtedly give a signal to the outside world — that even if he committed a mistake, he wouldn’t be punished for it because he was Yang Zhao’s nephew.
This kind of signal was without a doubt, very disadvantageous to him.
“Zhou Kai that bastard. I was wondering why he was suddenly so easy going to let us go? He was digging a hole for me!”
Lu Wuji still had some brains after all and he came to terms with this rude awakening.
Yang Zhao was both sorry and infuriated when he saw Lu Wuji’s appearance. “So you’re not a complete idiot after all.”
“Then what now?” Lu Wuji felt extremely put out now that he discovered he had been set up by Zhou Kai.
“It’s difficult to say. Us uncle and nephew have to put on a show, one of grievous sadness.” Yang Zhou threw out a rope and two branches of thorns. “Take off your clothes and tie yourself up. I’ll personally take you to the general director. The general director is a nostalgic person. I hope I can quell his anger by doing this.”
Bearing the rod and willingly taking punishment was an old trick, but the most useful method to salvage the situation now.
“Uncle, just what is that Jiang Chen’s background? Do you have any news from your end? Why is the general director personally acting on behalf of a minor character?” Lu Wuji was still a bit unreconciled about this development. He felt that he’d been played in a most bewildering manner this time.
“I haven’t received intelligence of the particulars of the situation either. I’ve only learned from various secret channels that not only is the general director quite enraged this time, but that old Zhou and old Qi are also involved.”
“Can it be that they’re acting in tandem against you?” Lu Wuji thought of a conspiracy theory first.
“Impossible.” Yang Zhao shook his head decisively. “Old Zhou has unfriendly relations with me, but I understand old Qi. He won’t intentionally target anyone. Don’t ask so much now, this matter shouldn’t be delayed. I’ll haul you in front of the general director right now.”
Yang Zhao was naturally an ambitious person who excelled in psychological games given that he’d made it to the second general director, the third personage of the Dragonteeth Guard and held the power of appointment and removal.
Of course, when Yang Zhao appeared at the doors of the Dragonteeth Guard with a trussed up Lu Wuji, cursing madly as he hauled the latter along, it naturally drew looks from many.
“That’s Vice General Yang alright. He doesn’t tolerate it even when General Lu makes a mistake and has personally brought him here all tied up. It’s admirable that he punishes his own relations in the name of justice!”
“When a prince commits a crime, his punishment is the same as a commoner. Lu Wuji seems to have committed a huge disaster this time. Vice Director Yang will surely not protect him.”
“Yes indeed. Vice General Yang is objective and impartial, how could he possibly show favoritism?”
These comments made Yang Zhao gloat inwardly, further confirming that he’d chosen the correct move.
“General director, Yang Zhao is fearful and have personally tied up this animal to bring to you to await your judgment!”
When he saw the general director Shangguan Yi, Yang Zhao stomped down on Lu Wuji’s butt and roared out, “Dumb animal, why aren’t you kneeling and begging the general director for his forgiveness yet?”
As foolish as Lu Wuji was, he didn’t dare get up to any antics in front of the general director’s power. He spoke respectfully and fearfully, “General director, I was young and ignorant, inexperienced in the ways of handling cases. This caused me to commit the error of biased judgment in this case. I am willing to accept the general director’s punishment.”
These words were quite cunning. He first removed the actions of him framing Jiang Chen and used nonsense such as, “young and ignorant, inexperienced in the ways of handling cases” to gloss over the matter.
He then said something about willing to accept the general director’s punishment — that was even more slippery. He was initially supposed to undergo investigation from the Dragonteeth Guard’s disciplinary department and accept the judgement of the military.
If the general director punished him, that meant he wouldn’t have to undergo punishment from the military.
Yang Zhao also spoke with deep distress, “General director, it’s because that I’ve been too busy normally that I’ve neglected my education of this kid. He’s committed such a dire mistake this time that if you wish to remove him from his position or punish him, I, Yang Zhao, won’t say a word on his behalf.”
If it was any other time, Shangguan Yi would have waved it off with a smile.
However, Yang Zhao discovered that things were a bit different this time. Shangguan Yi was expressionless. He made no comment, and didn’t propose any punishment. He didn’t even look at Lu Wuji.
This bizarre situation suddenly sent Yang Zhao’s heart pounding. A foreboding feeling of unease started to spread out within his heart.
At this moment, two more people walked in through the doors. They were Zhou Kai and Qi Tiannan.
Zhou Kai had a livid expression on his face as he looked at Yang Zhou and the trussed up Lu Wuji before walking past them with a shadow of a smile.
As for Qi Tiannan, he shook his head ruefully and didn’t dare exchange looks with Yang Zhao. It was obvious that he didn’t want to have too much contact with Yang Zhao.
This kind of situation made Yang Zhao feel more and more uneasy.
Zhou Kai’s reaction had been within expectations because they were old rivals but there was much more meaning to Qi Tiannan’s purposeful evasion of his gaze.
Could it be that there was more to this matter?
Shangguan Yi sighed lightly, “Vice Director Yang, the most critical problem now isn’t how to handle your nephew, but how to placate the anger from all sides.”
“What do you mean?” Yang Zhao blanked for a moment. Even if the Dragonteeth Guard mishandled a case, that was an internal matter. What anger from all sides?
“It looks like your nephew hasn’t told you everything?” Zhou Kai smiled coldly.
“Dirty swine, what else did you conceal?” Yang Zhao was losing face and thus kicked viciously at Lu Wuji. He was truly enraged this time and hadn’t faked that kick. Lu Wuji rolled on the ground in pain.
Shangguan Yi frowned. “Since you don’t know, Vice Director Qi, go over the situation with Vice Director Yang. The person who fastened the bell is needed to undo it, and it falls to the two of you to resolve it.”
Qi Tiannan nodded, “This is how the situation stands…”
Qi Tiannan went over the particulars of this matter again, especially going over in detail the parts having to do with Elder Ning and Shi Xiaoyao.
When he got to the part of Elder Fei from the Qingyang Valley, he quickly glossed over it due to considerations of face for general director Shangguan Yi.
Yang Zhao’s face changed drastically throughout these words and he wanted to cry, but had no tears. He knew that his nephew could cause a world of trouble, but this time’s mess was simply too great.
This was practically an overwhelming disaster that was raking the entire Dragonteeth Guard over hot coals!