Chapter 21 - Stop Pretending, I’ll Lay My Cards on the Table
Chapter 21 – Stop Pretending, I’ll Lay My Cards on the Table
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
“Little apprentice, tell me now. Why did the traitor say that you are a forging genius and insisted on dragging you along to die with him?” Sun Gongping’s eyes shone as he stared at Zhou Shu.
The veins on Zhou Shu’s forehead twitched a few times. You are the little one. Your entire family is little!
“How would I know? You should ask him,” Zhou Shu said.
“Can I interpret this as a ruse to gain sympathy?” Sun Gongping’s eyes lit up as if he had encountered something fun.
“He held you hostage and called you a forging genius. This way, after you get rescued, you will be nurtured as a genius by the Forging Division, allowing you to come into contact with more secrets…” Sun Gongping said excitedly.
“That must be it. You are not the only Forging Apprentice here. Even if he wants to hold someone hostage, why must he choose you? Aren’t Superintendent Xiao and Lieutenant Cheng more valuable? You’re his accomplice, am I right?” Sun Gongping shouted.
Zhou Shu was speechless. What kind of absurd reasoning is this? Is this a joke? Which eye of yours saw that I’m the accomplice of the traitor?
Xiao Zongshui and Cheng Yong looked down as if this had nothing to do with them and that the investigation of the traitor was not their business.
When Zhou Shu saw Xiao Zongshui’s actions, he was completely disappointed with this superintendent. It’s wishful thinking to expect him to stand up for me.
“Sir, with the strength of this traitor, do you think that he can hold Superintendent Xiao or Lieutenant Cheng hostage?” Zhou Shu was speechless.
“That makes sense.” Sun Gongping rubbed his chin and pondered. “Then, why did he hold you hostage? He seems easier to bully.”
Sun Gongping pointed at Li Ergou, who had been knocked to the ground by Qi Shan.
“Maybe he’s jealous of me because I’m more handsome!” Zhou Shu said.
Sun Gongping sized up Zhou Shu with a look of approval. “That makes sense. You do look a bit handsome. You’re only a little bit inferior to me.”
“Divine Constable Sun!” Cheng Yong couldn’t stand it anymore and said coldly, “His Majesty has already handed over the task of killing the traitors to the Huben Troops. Aren’t you crossing the line now?”
“His Majesty only said to have the Huben Troops kill the traitors, but he didn’t say that he would deprive the Divine Constable Bureau of its duties,” Sun Gongping said indifferently. “Investigating traitors is one of the responsibilities of the Divine Constable Bureau. Who dares to say that it has nothing to do with me?”
Cheng Yong narrowed his eyes, his gaze cold.
“What? Do you want to fight?” Sun Gongping sneered. “Come on. I’ll use only one hand.”
Cheng Yong suppressed his anger. The news of Sun Gongping entering the ranks had already spread.
No matter how confident Cheng Yong was, he didn’t think that he could defeat a ranked martial artist. If he made a move, wouldn’t he be asking for a beating?
Seeing Cheng Yong retreating, Sun Gongping said disdainfully, “If you don’t dare fight me, then go to the side. Don’t delay my investigation!”
Cheng Yong gritted his teeth and gripped the handle of his saber tightly. After a long time, he finally decided to prioritize the bigger picture. The Huben Troops had just made a mistake, so it wasn’t good to make enemies now!
Sun Gongping didn’t care about Cheng Yong’s reaction. His gaze landed on Zhou Shu again.
“Tell me honestly. You can’t lie to me! You guys should try harder to convince people to believe that there’s a forging genius. You? Take a piss and look at yourself. Apart from being a little more handsome, which part of you looks like a genius? Geniuses should be like me…” Sun Gongping rambled on like a chatterbox. “My eyes are as bright as torches. You have no other choice. Tell me the rest of your accomplices, and I can plead for you and spare your life—”
“Are you done?” Zhou Shu felt a headache coming on. If Xiao Zongshui didn’t explain for him, then he could only explain himself.
Otherwise, instead of being killed by the traitors, he would be killed as a traitor.
“First, I’m not an accomplice of the traitors.” Zhou Shu continued, “Second, although this is a little conceited, I am indeed a genius.”
After thinking about it for a while, Zhou Shu felt that it was safer to expose his forging skills than to reveal his cultivation level.
Moreover, even if he revealed his martial arts cultivation level, he might not be able to kill his way out of the capital. In the end, he would also have to reveal his forging skills to save himself.
Since this was the case, then let the world see him as a forging genius.
“Haha, you, a genius?” Sun Gongping laughed loudly. “This is the best joke I’ve heard this year!”
“Then your life is boring.” Zhou Shu shrugged.
“Oh, you’re quite strong psychologically. I’ve already seen through you, yet you’re still so stubborn.” Sun Gongping said excitedly, “Okay, how are you going to prove that this really isn’t a ruse to gain sympathy and that you’re really a forging genius?”
“Why should I prove myself?” Zhou Shu asked. “Who are you?”
Zhou Shu glanced sideways at Sun Gongping. His attitude was very clear: you are not worthy of me proving it to you.
“Looking down on me?” Sun Gongping was not angry. He laughed. “Listen carefully! I am the new divine constable of the Divine Constable Bureau, a ninth-rank expert, the successor of the Great Xia’s Martial Saint, Sun Gongping!”
“Ranked martial artist?” Zhou Shu looked at Sun Gongping in surprise. This was the first time he had seen a living ranked martial artist. They don’t look that powerful.
“That’s right!” Sun Gongping said proudly. “Now you know who I am? Let me tell you. If you can’t prove to me that you are indeed a genius, then you are the accomplice of this traitor. You’ll be killed without mercy!”
Swoosh! A white light flashed, and a wall three steps away collapsed.
Sun Gongping placed his hands behind his back as if he had never made a move.
Xiao Zongshui’s and Cheng Yong’s pupils contracted. Even they hadn’t seen Sun Gongping’s action clearly.
Zhou Shu curled his lips. That’s all? I can also do this easily. But speaking of which, why does this saber strike feel a little familiar?
This is a ninth-rank martial artist? I should be stronger than him. Does that mean that I can also be considered a ranked martial artist? Zhou Shu thought.
But Sun Gongping is only a ninth-rank martial artist. Eighth-rank martial artists are above ninth-rank martial artists. Above eighth-rank martial artists are seventh, sixth, fifth, and fourth-rank ones. Above them are third, second, and first-rank martial artists.
Even if I am slightly stronger than Sun Gongping, I am not much stronger. I am far from being an expert.
When Sun Gongping saw that Zhou Shu wasn’t speaking, he sneered. “What? You’re not pretending anymore? I told you long ago that thinking you can fool me is wishful thinking. Just tell me honestly. If you tell me the truth, I’ll be happy, and you’ll feel better too.”
“Fine. I’ll stop pretending.” Zhou Shu sighed. “I am indeed a forging genius.”
“You…” Sun Gongping was a little angry. He had tried his best to persuade him, but this person didn’t appreciate his kindness. Did he really think that he, Sun Gongping, was incapable of slashing others?
“He’s not lying,” Cheng Yong suddenly said.
This fellow had a unique method of determining whether a person was lying or not!
“Mm?” Sun Gongping looked at Cheng Yong, then at Zhou Shu.
“If you want me to prove it, sure.” The corners of Zhou Shu’s mouth curled up slightly. “But you’re still not qualified! You are a divine constable of the Divine Constable Bureau, right? Ask Marquis Zhuge to come over, and I will prove it to him!”
“Marquis Zhuge? Who is that?” Sun Gongping was confused.
Xiao Zongshui and Cheng Yong were also puzzled. There was no marquis with the surname Zhuge in Great Xia.
Zhou Shu wished he could slap his own mouth. He’d let his tongue slip.
This Divine Constable Bureau was different from the Divine Constable Bureau in the TV dramas in his previous life.
“Don’t mind it,” Zhou Shu said. “Let your Divine Constable Bureau’s boss—”
“You mean Old Ma?” Sun Gongping interrupted. “Although Old Ma isn’t very reliable, he’s still a third-rank grandmaster. Where is his face if he’s at your disposal?”
A third-rank grandmaster? Zhou Shu’s heart skipped a beat. That’s an out-and-out big shot. My current cultivation is far from that of a third-rank grandmaster. Speaking of which, can a third-rank grandmaster see through my cultivation level? Perhaps he can. It’s better not to meet these big shots now…
When Zhou Shu thought of this, his tone softened a little. “A third-rank grandmaster is indeed a little too much. But I need someone with sufficient status to be present. Otherwise, even if I prove that I’m a forging genius, what can I do if you want to beat me into submission? I need someone to ensure my innocence and safety, or I will not prove it!”
“I am a divine constable and a rank martial artist. Do you not trust me?” Sun Gongping said, his eyes wide.
“I don’t!” Zhou Shu stared back without fear, then glared at Xiao Zongshui. What is the point of you being a superintendent! You can’t even protect the people in your workshop!
Xiao Zongshui narrowed his eyes and didn’t speak. No one knew what he was thinking.
“How interesting.” Sun Gongping fumed with anger. “I have never forced anyone into submission. This is slander, do you understand? But I am magnanimous and will not bicker with you. Today, I will play with you! I want to see how you will prove your innocence! You need someone to hold the fort, right? Old Ma is busy, so he definitely won’t come. This is the Forging Division, so I’ll invite a big shot from the Forging Division to witness it!”
Sun Gongping turned around and glanced at Xiao Zongshui and Cheng Yong.
“I’ll be right back. You two, keep an eye on him. Don’t let him get away, and don’t let him die. If anything happens to him, you two will be accomplices! By then, even Cheng Wanli won’t be able to protect you!” After saying this, Sun Gongping leaped onto the wall and disappeared.
Xiao Zongshui and Cheng Yong looked at each other and saw the helplessness and awkwardness in each other’s eyes. Then they looked away and coughed.
Zhou Shu glanced at them and walked silently to Li Ergou. He checked his injuries, and after confirming that his life was not in danger, he sat down beside him.
The progress of this matter is completely beyond my expectations. My original plan is totally messed up.
I have to think carefully about what I should do to get past this hurdle…