Chapter 204: First Prince, We Meet Again
His two personal guards were just about to notify Lin Qianli after Ye Rong gave his order, when Xue Tong’s ears suddenly twitched, and his facial expression changed.
“Someone’s entered the valley!”
Ye Rong’s face turned frosty. His two personal guards were deathsworn who’d followed him since he was young. They took up positions on his left and right, protecting Ye Rong behind them.
The other members of the team also quickly gathered after hearing these words.
Lin Qianli, in the midst of hunting the spirit creature, also seemed to sense the danger. He dashed back to the team with a few bounds. Everyone within the team gathered on a patch of empty ground in the mountain valley.
“Hahaha, this maze realm is indeed small. Number four, who would’ve thought that us brothers would meet here in this place.” Ye Dai led the way and strode in with large strides through the entrance.
A large group of people followed behind him. He had nine people in his team to begin with, not to mention third prince Ye Zheng’s eight members.
The two teams combined numbered seventeen people in total.
Out of these seventeen people, there was one second level spirit realm pract.i.tioner and three at the first level on Ye Dai’s side, whereas Ye Zheng also had one first level spirit realm pract.i.tioner.
There were also four half step spirit realm pract.i.tioners in addition to that.
Spirit realm pract.i.tioners and half step spirit realm pract.i.tioners combined, there were nine pract.i.tioners in the spirit realm — more than half of their team.
The other eight, including Ye Dai and Ye Zheng, were all at the peak of true qi, and their battle capabilities weren’t weak.
When Ye Rong saw that Ye Dai and Ye Zheng were walking together, he was inwardly stern.
“Big brother, let’s not interact in the future. We’re hunting a spirit creature here, you’re not intent on flagrantly interfering are you?”
Ye Rong smiled. “This spirit creature has an exceedingly high level of training. Our team can’t handle it. You happen to have a lot of people and experts, perhaps you can try.”
Ye Dai looked at Ye Rong with a supercilious smile.
“Stop pretending number four. Do you really think we’ve come to this valley to steal a spirit creature from you?” Ye Zheng asked with a cold smile.
“Third brother, what do you mean?” Ye Rong’s face darkened.
“Don’t you think that this mountain valley is peaceful and quiet, and that the view is good? It should be a good place to serve as your final resting place, don’t you think?” Ye Zheng sneered.
“Big brother, is this what you’ve come for?” Ye Rong stared at Ye Dai.
Ye Dai smiled faintly, “Number four, if you were as honest and well-behaved as before, and didn’t incite trouble and cause confusion, I wouldn’t have oppressed you. However, you started acting up, and set yourself against me time and time again. You even hardened your heart in the capital to fight me for the limelight. Tell me, how should I view you?”
“Big brother, you and I are both of our royal father’s bloodline, and thus compet.i.tion should be fair between us brothers. Or is it that, as the eldest brother, you don’t even have the tolerance to accept compet.i.tion between brothers?”
“Fair compet.i.tion? What right do you have to compete with me? I, Ye Dai, am the eldest son of the direct line of descent. My mother’s side have been officers for three generations, and our family’s power is second only to the king. Countless opportunities have awaited me since birth. I’ve been destined to take over our royal father’s position. Every single one of my steps has been premeditated and paved, taking me closer towards the dragon throne. You’re a b.a.s.t.a.r.d born of a minor concubine. What do you have, other than half of our royal father’s blood? What right do you have to compete with me?”
There were no outsiders here, and they weren’t in the capital. Ye Dai decided to lay it all out, and no longer keep up any pretenses.
“Big brother, this is your theory of qualification? If you were destined to take our royal father’s position since birth, then what need is there for us princes?”
“All of you exist just because he wanted to satisfy a momentary animalistic urge!” Ye Dai didn’t respect even his royal father in this moment.
When Ye Zheng heard these words, a shadow also briefly flashed across his face. However, he tucked it away neatly and concealed it.
“This is to say that you’ve made up your mind today to kill me?” Ye Rong said coldly.
“You’ve got that right. However, seeing that we’re brothers, I can give you the chance to take your own life.” Ye Dai smiled sinisterly. “If you wait for us to make a move, then you’ll be in for some pain. I promise you that I won’t give you an easy death.”
“Good, good. You’re our royal father’s son alright. You pose as a person of high morals alright. Ye Dai, I’ve seen through you!”
“Haha, so what if you’ve seen through me? What does it matter if you conceal your true ident.i.ty well? All of your previous posing is useless in the face of absolute power. I merely need to wave my hand now in order to thoroughly crush you.”
Ye Rong’s gaze shot to Ye Zheng. “Number three, you’re his accomplice, but haven’t you thought that my circ.u.mstances today will be those of yours tomorrow? Do you think he’ll let you sleep soundly beside his bed?”
Ye Zheng laughed heartily, “Number four, do you think trying to play us off against each other will work at this time? I haven’t the slightest bit of interest in the position of Crown Prince. I also admit that I’m inferior to our big brother in many ways, what do I have to compete with? Since I can’t compete with him, I might as well behave properly in this situation, and play my role well. Those who suit their actions to the time are wise. You simply don’t recognize the times when you see them.”
Ye Dai nodded his head in great admiration, obviously very pleased with Ye Zheng’s declarations.
Ye Rong sighed lightly, looking at Lin Qianli, and then looking at his two personal guards.
Lin Qianli said faintly, “Don’t look at me, you valued me as one of the best in the kingdom, and this is how I’ll repay you. I won’t abandon you in your time of need.”
“We shall protect the fourth prince unto death!” His two personal guards also had resolute tones.
Xue Tong sighed and grasped Xue Sha’s bow, striking a pose of fighting to the death.
Even though he understood that there was no hope in this battle, there was nothing called submitting to capture with folded arms in the world of pract.i.tioners.
“Ye Rong, are you really going to continue putting up a stiff resistance? Floundering desperately at death’s door?” Ye Dai shouted.
“Ye Dai, I can die if you want me to die. However, these people don’t have much of a connection with me, and have only temporarily formed a team with me. Why must you spare none?”
“Haha, number four, are you still playing the corny act of false benevolence at a time like this? Do you think I’d be touched by you and let them go?”
Ye Dai’s face darkened. “Don’t be naive. Following you was their original sin, a death sentence! I’ll ask you one final time. Will you take your own life, or wait for me to slaughter you?”
Ye Rong’s expression was full of ruefulness. “Everyone, to think that I’ve dragged you down with me this time… don’t mind me when the battle begins, make it out if you can.”
“Xue Tong, your mind is clear. If you can escape in the heat of battle, go find Jiang Chen. Find Miss Dan Fei!”
Xue Tong sighed lightly. It was apparent that it’d be impossible to escape, judging from the other side’s posturing.
“Fourth prince, there’s no use in saying anything now. We fight for our lives.” A resolute look of fighting for his life appeared on Xue Tong’s face.
Fight for their lives!
Ye Rong pulled out his longsword and called out in a hearty shout, “Ye Dai, you’ve always stylized yourself as the heaven’s favored one, and praised yourself as being better than us. Do you have the guts to face off against me? Otherwise, even if you triumph over me with superior numbers, not only will I not accept this defeat, neither will the other princes.”
“A one on one? Do you think you’re worthy of one?” Ye Dai paid Ye Rong no heed, and gave orders in a clear voice, “Whoever kills him and takes his head will be made the lord of tens of thousand when I take the throne in the future!”
Ye Zheng also cried out, “Leave none alive, kill them all!”
Just at that moment —
A sudden piercing round of applause traveled out from the bushes within the mountain valley.
“Who’s there?” The battle had been about to commence when it was halted by this sudden ear piercing round of applause. All gazes looked in the direction of the sound.
Two figures dashed out of the bushes and landed amongst Ye Rong’s team.
One of them had a jeering smile on his face — Jiang Chen. The other was expressionless, and wore a remote look, frost covering her features. Who was it but Dan Fei?
“Jiang Chen?” A look of disbelief shot out from Ye Dai’s eyes as he also sent an angry look towards Liu Can of the Northern Palace. “Didn’t you say you’d kept on eye on them, and that they weren’t nearby at all?”
Liu Can’s eyes were also filled with the look of having seen a ghost.
How… how was this possible? He’d definitely detected that they weren’t nearby. How had they appeared here, after disappearing for two, three days? And how had they found Ye Rong’s team?
“First prince, they truly weren’t with Ye Rong’s team before. Can it be that they ran into him by coincidence?” Liu Can explained with a wry expression.
“Useless tras.h.!.+” Ye Dai cursed lowly.
If only Dan Fei had appeared, not only would Ye Dai not have been mad, but he’d actually have been quite happy. However, adding Jiang Chen into the mix along with Dan Fei’s appearance, made the situation completely different.
He’d be able to take out Jiang Chen as well if he appeared. This was a fantastic development that he could only hope for.
But with Dan Fei, although Ye Dai was ruthless, he’d always maintained an att.i.tude of respect, fear, and one of currying favor with her. To kill Dan Fei as well… this was something that he couldn’t decide on immediately.
“Liu Can, stop pretending. You purposefully left a lot of clues behind along the way so that I could follow you. Didn’t you want me to find you lot?”
Liu Can’s expression changed drastically. “Jiang Chen, don’t you dare make unfounded accusations. When did I leave clues behind, and since when was I purposefully luring you here?”
Jiang Chen smiled without saying a word. He naturally hadn’t followed Liu Can’s clues, but had left a particular powder on Liu Can that enabled him to follow the scent and make his way here.
He’d purposefully said this obviously, in order to make things difficult for Liu Can, and to create trouble between Liu Can and Ye Dai.
Indeed, Ye Dai’s face turned frosty when he heard these words. “What do you mean by this Liu Can? Can it be that you purposefully lured them here?”
Liu Can panicked, “First prince, you believe his nonsense?”
“Liu Can, you dare commit your deeds, but don’t dare own up to them? Didn’t you lure me here so that there’d be a fight between evenly matched forces, resulting in you earning a profit without even working for it?”
Liu Can swore loudly, “Jiang Chen, you motherf*cking s.h.i.+t! I’m not a freaking prince, what the h.e.l.l is this about earning a profit without working for it?”
“Who knows? Perhaps you’ve thrown yourself under second prince Ye Qiao’s banner? Perhaps the scene today is something that second prince Ye Qiao crafted?” Jiang Chen chuckled.
Ye Dai’s expression became uglier and uglier as his look at Liu Can became colder and colder!