Wife Doting Addiction：My Abducted Tsundere Husband - Chapter 171
Chapter 171: Calling for a Truce and Making Peace
Chaos broke out within the originally quiet cave when Nangong Bi awoke.
Multiple questions were thrown at her as if she had been asleep for a year instead of merely one day and one night.
Everyone was separated and dispersed when they had jumped off from the catacomb and had skidded down during the landslide.
Nangong Shu should not meet any mishap as well if the rest of them were safe! Nangong Bi’s depressed mood finally brightened up after they had finally made it out of the catacomb.
There was no food.
As such, they could only drink two mouthfuls of water when they got hungry.
The wind gradually weakened after noontime.
The scorching sun hung high in the sky as the sunlight shone on the snow-covered Coiling Dragon Ridge.
They got up and headed out of the cave as they searched for the others and tried to find their way down the mountain.
The snow had accumulated up to their knees, which made the path difficult for them to walk.
As Nangong Bi’s feet were injured, she did not put up a front and got onto Hu Dapao’s back obediently instead.
The young woman leaned on the man’s broad shoulders as he walked in steady and strong footsteps.
She felt particularly safe with him around.
“Put me down if you’re tired!” Nangong Bi’s ears were slightly reddened as she said softly.
“I’m not tired! I can even carry two people of your weight since you’re so slim!” Hu Dapao laughed as he replied.
Nangong Bi raised her brows.
“Are you saying that you’re going to marry two wives?” .
Hu Dapao almost stumbled as he quickly said, “How could that be? One is enough!” Nangong Bi bit onto her lower lip as she chuckled.
However, she became frustrated within the next instant, as she realized it was none of her business regardless of how many wives he was going to marry! Even though it had weakened, the wind was still frigid.
It caused a sharply unpleasant and stinging sensation to the skin as it blew across their bodies.
Nangong Bi exhaled a few breaths of warm air onto her palms, before using them to cover onto the man’s ears.
“There… there’s no need to do that.
I’m not cold!” Hu Dapao said hoarsely.
Continue reading on MYB0XN0 V E L.
COM Nangong Bi stayed silent and continued her actions to warm him up.
The young woman’s palms felt warm and soft.
Hu Dapao felt as if his rock-hard chest was being warmed up as well.
He felt extremely comforted and chortled.
“Nangong Bi, I had a dream the other day!” Nangong Bi was startled for a while, and she recalled their intimate behavior back at the secret passage that day.
Her face flushed red as she asked softly, “…What dream?” Hu Dapao chuckled and teased, “I can’t tell you!” She would reprimand him and think that he was shameless if he told her about the dream.
As such, he could not tell her no matter what! Nangong Bi did not ask further.
She only bit her lower lip as she leaned onto his shoulders.
Xiao Lie shielded Su Jiu from the cold wind.
“I wish that you could let me carry you too,” he laughed softly and said.
The wind blew past Su Jiu’s ears as she looked up and asked, “What?” Xiao Lie held onto her hand and glimpsed at Hu Dapao and Nangong Bi behind him as he laughed and said, “I wish that you could be like her right now, and rely on me for once!” Su Jiu understood his words this time and glanced behind.
She laughed and said with seriousness, “My leg is fine! I used to travel on the mountain roads frequently in the past.
” Xiao Lie pursed his lips into a smile without speaking further.
“Chief, look! There seems to be a person over there!” Ah Shu shouted all of a sudden.
Su Jiu and the rest of them looked up at the same time.
Indeed, someone was kneeling on the ground ten feet away.
Why was he kneeling on the ground among the snow? Could he be from the Daliang Army? Everyone walked over swiftly and were stunned when they arrived before the person.
That man was indeed kneeling, but his head was fully submerged in the snow on the ground, and only his body could be seen.
He wore a military uniform, which showed that he was a fifth-grade Daliang soldier, and he held a bag of food rations tightly in his hands.
It was Luo Sheng! Luo Sheng seemed to have been dead for more than two hours, as his frozen body was already covered with a layer of snow.
What had happened? It was unclear how he ended up dead as he plunged into the snow.
There seemed to be no wounds on his body.
Ah Shu kicked his body hard as he hollered, “You deserved it since you ran away!” Luo Sheng’s body toppled onto the ground from the force of his kick and remained in a kneeling posture.
However, everyone got a shock when they saw his face.
Nangong Bi screamed and abruptly hid her face behind Hu Dapao’s back as she did not dare to take a second look.
“Don’t be afraid!” Hu Dapao patted on her shoulder comfortingly as he said hoarsely.
Luo Sheng’s mouth had rotted away, and his white teeth and jawbones were visible.
Half of the flesh on his nose had also been eaten away, and his entire face was a bloody mess.
His eyes were bulging, and his pupils were protruding out.
He seemed to have died a painful death.
“The fruit was poisoned!” Ah Shu exclaimed.
Luo Sheng had been poisoned because he had licked the fruit from the emerald tree.
Even though this man was detestable, his harrowing death deeply affected everyone.
“Why did I bother to save him from the catacomb if he was going to die anyway?!” Ah Shu chided hatefully, kicking through the snow several times to cover the distressing image of Luo Sheng’s face.
Everyone seemed perturbed by his death, and they did not even bother to retrieve the bag of field rations from his hands.
They carefully stepped around Luo Sheng’s body and continued their way down the mountain.
The sky turned dark after they walked past a mountain slope.
There seemed to be a forest ahead of them which had been partially submerged under the rocks after the landslide.
Everyone climbed onto the rocks, which had been stacked up to the height of the trees.
Just then, they could hear footsteps approaching them, and they turned around to see Nangong Shu leading an army of soldiers out from the side of the mountain.
Chang Huan and Zhao Xiong were also with them, and it seemed like they had already met with each other quite some time ago.
It turned out that the two groups of people were not far apart and were only separated by a small mountain bump.
They had only walked further away from each other due to the dark environment at night.
“Brother! Brother!” Nangong Bi waved her arms excitedly.
Nangong Shu and everyone else turned around and instantly appeared elated as they strode towards them quickly.
They were finally reunited.
It was turning dark, and they had to find somewhere to rest.
Nangong Shu reported to Xiao Lie that among the 2,000 soldiers that he had brought up the mountain, a portion of them had been killed within the catacomb, and only a thousand odd soldiers were left.
It was a relief that they had managed to kill Hage! Xiao Lie nodded.
“There should be other soldiers who had rolled down the mountain on the day we encountered the avalanche and fell into the catacomb.
We may bump into them on the way down the mountain!” Nangong Shu agreed.
“Yes, it would be great if they’re still alive!” Hu Dapao told Nangong Shu about Luo Sheng’s death.
Nangong Shu frowned upon hearing his words, not because he felt pity for a cunning military officer, but because their other agendas had to be postponed due to his death.
Nangong Shu subconsciously looked up at Xiao Lie and noticed that he looked expressionless.
He could not discern what he was thinking.
Chang Huan grew paranoid as he had been separated from Su Jiu several times.
He stuck with Su Jiu closely this time, staying right by her side even as she slept.
However, Su Jiu felt that they could keep warm that way, and only treated him as a human cushion as she slept with ease.
Dawn broke after a night of rest, and they quickly continued on their way.
Their food rations were dwindling.
They could not hunt for any animals as the mountain was heavily blanketed by snow.
They could only continue on their way on an empty stomach and hope that they could find their way down the mountain as soon as possible.
“Chief, if we are unable to make it out, you should drink my blood!” Chang Huan said sternly as he walked beside Su Jiu.
Xiao Lie heard his words and turned around to look at Chang Huan silently.
“Then will you drink mine?” Su Jiu pursed on her dried and cracked lips as she asked jokingly.
“No matter what, I’ll make sure you get out alive, Chief!” Chang Huan’s charming gaze was filled with determination.
They had a difficult time walking on the mountain roads due to the thick snow.
Despite having traveled from morning till noon, they still could not see an end to the huge area covered with snow.
Would they end up starving to death on this snow-covered mountain, even though they had made it out of the catacomb? They continued on their way after a short period of rest, and they chewed on a few mouthfuls of snow furiously as they got too hungry.
Chang Huan suddenly recalled the day when he had first entered the Dragon Conqueror Gang.
Su Jiu had carried him on her back as he had been seriously injured.
It was a similar scene to their situation right now as they had also starved and chewed on snow.
It was even tougher for them in the past, as he was only ten years old, while Su Jiu was only eight.
Chang Huan felt that they had gone back in time as they experienced a similar situation once again.
The good thing was that he could be by her side and protect her! Everyone stopped to take a break when the sun reached its highest position in the sky.
They had felt alright when they were walking, but their stomachs seemed to get hungrier the moment they stopped.
The snow-covered mountain top appeared like a bun in their eyes.
Nangong Shu gave encouraging words to boost everyone’s morale before they got up to continue on their way again.
Their hopes of survival would decrease the more they delayed their journey.
They met two groups of Daliang Army in the afternoon.
One group was lost when they had jumped off the catacomb together with them, while the other had rolled down the mountain during the landslide after Xiao Lie led them into the mountain.
The second group did not fall into the catacomb, and they did not make their way down the mountain after rounding everyone up.
They had stayed on the mountain in search of Xiao Lie and the rest, and they had been starving for two days as they found themselves at wit’s end.
Even though there were already more than 2,000 people after the reunion, their large group size still appeared insignificant compared to the vast and endless mountain ranges.
The night quickly fell, and another day had passed.
Nangong Shu had just given his command for everyone to take a rest when several of them fell to the ground without a word.
Many people had frostbites on their feet after walking through snow for several days.
They were at the end of their ropes as they were also starving badly.
Nangong Shu ordered for some of them to gather wood and start a fire so that they could melt some snow to soothe the feet of the soldiers who had fallen unconscious.
Nangong Bi’s face was pale.
She leaned onto Su Jiu as she asked weakly, “Su Jiu, can we still make it out?” Su Jiu wanted to give a grin, but her lips were sore as they were dry and cracking.
She frowned and said with determination, “We will! We have even made it out of the catacomb! This proves that we are not fated to die!” Nangong Bi watched the sparkling flames and shifted her gaze onto Hu Dapao, who was busy caring for the injured soldiers.
She felt more at ease observing him.
Chang Huan walked over as he carried a broken earthen jar.
He knelt onto the ground and handed it over to Su Jiu.
“Boss, have some water!” Su Jiu took the jar and let Nangong Bi have some before taking a few sips.
“Su Jiu, I’m starving.
I wish I could have the beef from your restaurant, together with Beggar’s Chicken, and osmanthus glutinous rice balls from my mum…” Nangong Bi mumbled with her eyes shut.
“Enough! I’m even hungrier now that I’ve listened to you!” Chang Huan swallowed hard and scoffed weakly.
Su Jiu placed her arms around them and laughed.
“We shall set up ten tables of food and wine once we’ve returned to Shengjing City.
We can feast for three days and three nights!” “Boss, I can eat an entire cow right now!” Chang Huan said.
“I can eat two!” Nangong Bi quipped immediately.
“I can eat five!” Zhao Xiong walked over and laughed.
“This lady can still joke right now! I guess this means that she’s fine!” He handed over a piece of biscuit to Su Jiu as he spoke, “Master Jiu, my men found this when they had gone to gather for wood just now.
It was probably left behind when the soldiers rolled down the mountain.
Have a bite!” Su Jiu looked at the biscuit and shook her head.
“Whoever found this can have it, there is no need to be courteous at the moment.
Everyone needs food right now!” “We are all men, and we can withstand hunger! Moreover, we have been through starvation in the past, unlike all of you noble people who hailed from the city!” Zhao Xiong laughed goofily and shoved the biscuit into Nangong Bi’s hands.
“This lady can have it! You can gain more energy to walk tomorrow!” Zhao Xiong got up to leave upon speaking as if he was afraid that she would return the biscuit to him.
However, Su Jiu could see him swallowing his saliva as he looked at the biscuit.
Everyone was badly starving! Nangong Bi’s hands trembled slightly as she held the biscuit.
Tears suddenly rolled down her cheeks as she said while choking back on her tears, “Su Jiu, I was wrong.
I used to look down upon those rough and ignorant people, but now I understand that a person can be kind, regardless of how wealthy or poor he or she is.
” She recalled herself giving Hu Dapao a tight slap and accusing him of being an unreasonable man, but she would have been dead if not for his help these past few days! Nangong Bi was overcome with despair, and she displayed her sadness as she wept into Su Jiu’s arms.
Su Jiu looked at the young woman helplessly and said, “Are you hungry? Go ahead and eat! What are you crying about?” Was she touched by a mere biscuit? Chang Huan frowned and yanked Nangong Bi off Su Jiu as he retorted with disgust, “Hey! Don’t spread your mucus onto our Boss!” Nangong Bi broke into a chuckle upon hearing his words.
Her face was still full of tears as she grabbed onto a ball of snow and flung it onto Chang Huan.
“Chang Huan, you’re a jerk! I was visibly upset, and yet you still teased me!” The three of them broke out into laughter and created the only noise that could be heard in the silent night.
The soldiers around them gradually relaxed upon hearing them.
Xiao Lie and Nangong Shu, who were both sitting a short distance away, turned around to look at them tenderly.
Hu Dapao changed the medicine on Nangong Bi’s feet before they went to sleep at night.
The man had lost weight after these few days.
A stubble had grown around his mouth, which made him look particularly worn out.
He knelt on the ground with one knee, and carefully put medicine onto Nangong Bi’s feet and wrapped the gauze around them.
The wind blew past his dark hair hanging loosely beside his face, which made him appear wild but gentle.
Nangong Bi looked at him wistfully, and she felt slightly odd all of a sudden.
She took out the biscuit which she had kept and handed it over to the man.
“For you!” Startled, Hu Dapao stared at the biscuit and frowned.
“Why didn’t you eat it?” “It was tough for you to carry me on your back for the entire day! You can have it!” The biscuit had been warmed up as it had been kept in the young woman’s embrace.
Hu Dapao’s eyes reddened as he shoved the biscuit back to her.
“Keep it, I can still withstand the hunger!” “You eat it!” the young woman suddenly choked back on her tears.
Hu Dapao stared at her blankly and saw her tearful eyes.
He felt his throat tighten as he reached out for the biscuit and said, “Fine, I’ll eat it!” Nangong Bi broke into a smile.
Her squinted eyes appeared like crescent moons, which dazzled Hu Dapao’s eyes.
The wind gradually died down, and the night fell silent.
Only the crackling firewood could be heard.
Everyone had traveled for a long day.
They only drank some water before going to sleep, while hiding from the wind.
Chang Huan shielded Su Jiu from the wind as she leaned on his body, while Nangong Bi leaned on her.
Ah Shu laid his back on Chang Huan, and the few of them fell asleep while cuddling with each other.
Hu Dapao led a few soldiers and went on patrol, while Xiao Lie and Nangong Shu sat by the fire to discuss the next day’s route.
The place that they had fallen in was near the north of Coiling Dragon Ridge.
The terrain had transformed after the landslide and avalanche, and the path they had taken to travel up the mountain had already been covered heavily by snow.
As a result, they had to find a new path down the mountain.
While discussing, they suddenly heard the soldiers on guarding duty yell a distance away, “Who’s that?” Hu Dapao seemed to have heard them as well and hurriedly led a few men over.
Nangong Shu stood up and looked towards the direction of the commotion.
Several people could be seen hiding among the snow and were approaching them upon getting caught.
He frowned, wondering how there could be people in the Coiling Dragon Ridge at such a late time in the night.
Hu Dapao had already marched over as he yelled, “We are from the Daliang Army! Who are you?” The few people heard him, and one of them shouted, “General Hu?” Astonished, Hu Dapao raised his torch to shine a light on the approaching men.
The men strode quickly towards him, and their leader smiled agitatedly.
“It’s indeed you, General Hu! Do you still remember me? I’m Wei Tan, and we’re here to look for our Young Mistress!” Realization dawned on Hu Dapao.
“So it’s you, Chief Guard Wei!” Wei Tan had been searching in the mountain for several days and had almost lost his life during the landslide before finally meeting Hu Dapao.
He was particularly excited as he asked hurriedly, “Where is our Young Mistress? Is she around?” “Yes, she is! I’ll bring you to her right now!” Hu Dapao laughed and quickly led Wei Tan towards Su Jiu.
A few soldiers were woken up, and they stared at Wei Tan and his men curiously.
Wei Tan saw Su Jiu a few feet away and hurried over.
“Young Mistress, we’ve finally found you! You have suffered so much!” Su Jiu gaped at Wei Tan in surprise.
“Chief Guard Wei, why are you in the mountains?” “Young Mistress, I’ve heard that you and the Daliang Army had entered the Coiling Dragon Ridge, and I was worried about your safety.
As such, I’ve brought along some men to come looking for you.
We’ve been in the mountains for several days, but we couldn’t find you! Instead, we ran into a landslide not long after, and we had been hiding here as a result.
We’ve only come searching over here when we saw the flames and the smoke, but we didn’t expect that we would find you, Young Mistress!” Wei Tan felt tremendously relieved, seeing that Su Jiu was safe and sound.
Su Jiu was deeply grateful.
“You have gone through much trouble!” “It wasn’t troublesome as long as we could find you, Young Mistress!” Nangong Shu walked over and asked, “Who are these people? Why are they referring to Su Jiu as ‘Young Mistress’?” Nangong Shu was unaware of Su Jiu’s relationship with the Ji Manor till this moment.
Hu Dapao only mentioned that it was a long story, and said that Wei Tan was from the Ji Manor.
Hu Dapao introduced them to Wei Tan upon speaking, “This is His Highness Prince Rui, and this is General Nangong!” “Greetings to Your Highness! Greetings to you, General!” Wei Tan got a shock and quickly knelt onto the ground.
Xiao Lie was displeased with him referring to Su Jiu as Young Mistress all the time.
He appeared glum as he gave a sound of acknowledgment.
Nangong Shu helped him up and spoke sternly amidst the cold wind, “Chief Guard Wei, do you know the way down the mountain?” Wei Tan quickly nodded.
“Yes, I know! We were afraid of getting lost in the mountain, and because of that we had left markings on our way up!” Everyone’s faces were brimming with joy.
Su Jiu hurriedly asked, “But there was a landslide! Will your markings still be accurate?” “Young Mistress, do not worry! We had not only left markings, but we had also left a man behind after every distance so that message can be brought across!” Wei Tan assured confidently.
Everyone became elated, and Nangong Shu said earnestly, “I will be truly grateful if you can lead us down the mountain!” “General, you’re welcome!” Wei Tan quickly said and proceeded to ask after looking at everyone, “Young Mistress, you and everyone else must not have eaten yet.
I’ll send somebody to bring over some food right now!” “You have food?” Ah Shu yelled in surprise.
They sounded like they had been in the mountain for many days, so it was a surprise that they still had food with them.
“There’s not much left, but it’s sufficient to stave off your hunger!” Wei Tan laughed and said as he hurriedly ordered his men behind him to bring all their belongings over.
“Noted!’ The few men acknowledged and went off.
They retrieved their belongings quickly, which were unexpectedly carried by two camels.
Wei Tan walked over and removed the water flasks and bags filled with food rations hung on the camels.
There were biscuits, buns, and even jerky available! Everyone stared at the food greedily and gulped.
They felt like there was nothing else more delicious than the food in front of them right now! Although it was a huge amount of food, it was still insufficient due to a large number of people present.
As such, they had to crush the biscuits and jerky and cook them into porridge, before everyone could consume a bowl of it.
Su Jiu only drank half a bowl of the porridge before her energy was already revived.
She had always wanted to call it quits with Ji Yuxian.
Little did she expect that she still had to end up relying on him to survive.
It was as if the mark of Young Mistress Ji had been permanently etched on her.
Xiao Lie walked over and sat by her side.
He poured the leftover porridge in his bowl into hers and pushed it towards her when he saw that she was about to reject him.
He looked at her tenderly and said, “Have some more.
I’ve already eaten my fill!” Su Jiu looked at the bland porridge in her bowl and laughed.
“Your Highness Prince Rui has always been pampered and living comfortably! You must not have eaten such food before!” “The basic purpose of food is for one’s survival.
The kind of food doesn’t matter, as long as it helps to meet that intention!” the man watched the mountain ranges far away as he said in a low voice.
“You’re right!” Su Jiu laughed and gulped down a mouthful of porridge, before handing the bowl to Xiao Lie.
It was as if she knew that he had lied about having his fill previously.
Xiao Lie’s lips curled into a smile as he accepted the bowl, and he took a mouthful of porridge before returning it to her.
The leftover porridge was quickly consumed after they alternately ate the porridge.
Xiao Lie looked at her calmly as he said, “Ah Jiu, I was terrified just now!” “What happened?” Su Jiu turned around and asked.
“I was terrified when I heard Wei Tan calling you Young Mistress!” Xiao Lie looked at her wistfully.
Stunned, Su Jiu immediately lowered her head without speaking a word.
“Ah Jiu, will you still return to the Ji Manor?” Xiao Lie asked hoarsely.
“No!” Su Jiu took a deep breath and looked up at the pitch-black surroundings within the mountain.
“I’m not going back again!” Xiao Lie’s eyes lit up.
He gradually cheered up and placed his palm onto the back of Su Jiu’s hand on the ground.
Su Jiu turned around to look at him as she raised her brows.
“Don’t be mistaken.
It has nothing to do with you whether I go back to the Ji Manor or not.
I’m not going back because Ji Yuxian already has a wife.
” Xiao Lie grinned and said, “As long as you are not going back, I will still have a chance to woo you! Can’t I just be happy about it?” Su Jiu rolled her wide eyes, before circling her arms around her chest and looking at him in curiosity.
“Xiao Lie, what do you like about me?” She was not demure and elegant, and she was not proficient in playing instruments, chess, calligraphy, or painting.
He should not pick a princess consort like her.
Xiao Lie’s eyes sparkled intensely under the moonlight, as the corner of his lips curled into a smile.
He muttered softly, “I don’t know what I like about you either, but every single one of your facial expressions and smiles had been deeply etched in my heart.
I would always become happy whenever I see you, and I would miss you if I don’t! I can’t control myself either!” Su Jiu frowned and said in a deep voice, “Xiao Lie, I’m very confused! I’ve previously told Nangong Bi to leave Hu Dapao alone if she didn’t like him in order not to raise his hopes, but I can’t bear to leave you as a friend either!” Was she telling him that she did not like him? Xiao Lie felt bitter, but his smile remained.
“You will not be the Su Jiu I know if you avoided me!” Xiao Lie leaned close to Su Jiu as he paused in his words.
His gaze darkened as he asked softly, “Ah Jiu, did you not realize that Nangong Bi had already fallen for Hu Dapao?” Su Jiu widened her eyes in disbelief.
The man’s warm breaths fell onto her ear lobes as he continued to speak enticingly, “As such, there will be a day when I will let you fall for me.
Do you dare to make a bet?” Su Jiu gawked at him in surprise.
The man’s good-looking face was illuminated under the moonlight.
His eyes sparkled like the starry night sky as he gazed at her intently and provocatively, seemingly confident about winning the bet.
If this was only the beginning of the game, when would it end? Everyone got out of the Coiling Dragon Ridge during the evening the next day.
Nangong Shu immediately led his soldiers back to Yanyun Pass without taking a break, while Xiao Lie brought the rest of the soldiers back to the military camp outside of Youzhou.
The group made it back to the camp after three days, and they went to bed immediately.
Afterward, they woke up to the aroma of cooked food, and greedily consumed their meals.
They only laid on the ground after filling their stomachs to the brim, and they felt like they had finally revived.
The near ten days of experience in Coiling Dragon Ridge was going to be unforgettable for the rest of their lives.
Xiao Lie received a memorandum from Nangong Shu the next day.
The allied forces comprising the Qiang Clan and Naye Clan had failed miserably, as the 50,000 soldiers from the Naye Clan had all been killed, while the leftover 10,000 odd soldiers from the Qiang Clan had also been defeated badly by Shao Yun’s troops.
Moreover, Hage’s younger brother, Shen Rong, had stepped up as the new leader upon Hage’s death.
Shen Rong had submitted an official document to call for a truce.
He had also offered to be subjugated to Daliang Country and would pay tribute to the nation every year.
They would also retreat 100 miles away and never go to war ever again! Xiao Lie was slightly aware of Shen Rong as a person, and he understood that the previous leader of the Qiang Clan had intended to pass the throne to him.
However, Hage, who had always been violent and interested in war, had gained control over his father and had taken over the throne by force.
Shen Rong was a tame person, and Hage did not kill him because of this reason.
Now that Hage was dead, Shen Rong was persuaded by his clan to take over the throne and call for a truce with Daliang Country.
The Qiang Clan had long been unhappy about Hage’s ruthless nature and had celebrated in joy when they heard about Hage’s death.
It was a blessing for the citizens living in the frontier, now that Shen Rong had taken over! Xiao Lie immediately sent the official document from the Qiang Clan and Naye Clan to Shengjing City for the Emperor’s approval.
It was already near the end of the New Year month after Su Jiu recuperated for three days.
They would head back to Shengjing City after Nangong Bi’s feet had recovered.
Zhao Xiong had been retained in the military camp to research secret weapons that he had created.
Su Jiu would join him in the work whenever she was free.
It was a smooth-sailing process for Zhao Xiong as he had military support, and the secret weapon was improved in less than five days.
Its physical size was enlarged, and its destructive power was increased by tenfold.
The few of them watched on the field when it was time to test the outcome of the research.
When Ah Shu saw the five-foot deep pit created by the blast, he said excitedly, “This is incredible! We will blast the Naye army back to their hometown if they dare to attack us again!” Su Jiu’s face was covered with soot, and only her sparkling white teeth could be seen as she chortled.
The imperial decree from the Emperor arrived from Shengjing City ten days later, consisting of huge compliments offered to Xiao Lie, Nangong Shu, and the rest of the personnel, as well as an agreement to call for a truce with the Qiang Clan and Naye Clan.
Additionally, the decree had ordered for Hu Dapao to head back to Shengjing City together with the troop, to be wedded with Princess Heyu upon returning! Everyone cheered in joy when they heard about the decree.
However, Hu Dapao frowned as he headed back to his tent alone.
Nangong Shu had finished his matters at Yanyun Pass before he returned to the military camp.
He went to visit Nangong Bi only after reporting to Xiao Lie.
Nangong Bi could already rest her feet on the ground as the frostbites on her legs slowly recovered.
Nangong Shu helped to change her medicine as he asked, “Do you know about the Emperor ordering for Hu Dapao to head back to Shengjing City to be wedded with you?” Nangong Bi bit onto her lower lip, lowering her head as she blushed and nodded lightly.
Nangong Shu’s good-looking face broke into a smile.
“Why are you not crying like how you did previously?” “Brother!” Nangong Bi frowned and glared at him before saying sternly, “Hu Dapao had suffered so much because of me.
I wouldn’t have made it back alive this time if not for him!” “So, are you agreeing to the marriage?” Nangong Shu laughed as he asked.
Nangong Bi’s face flushed crimson as she looked down and remained silent.
“But…” Nangong Shu sighed and continued, “Hu Dapao came to look for me just now when I arrived, and he said that he won’t go back to Shengjing City!” Nangong Bi looked up abruptly.
“Why? Why isn’t he going back?” “Why are you so anxious when you don’t like him? You don’t want to be married to him anyway! Won’t it be to your liking if he does not go back to Shengjing City? Don’t tell me that you’ve fallen for him!” Nangong Shu smiled and raised his brows suggestively.
“I did not fall for him!” Nangong Bi rebutted loudly and stammered, “I… I was just… just confused!” Hu Dapao stood outside the tent, holding onto a bowl of chicken soup which he had just made.
He was about to open the tent when he heard the woman’s yell, and his arm fell the next instant.
He felt his chest tighten, and his heart ached deeply.
However, there was nothing to be disappointed about.
For the longest time, he was aware that she did not like him! Hu Dapao held onto the bowl of chicken soup as he turned around to leave dejectedly.
Someone grabbed hold of his arm after a while and said, “General Hu!” The bowl of chicken soup fell from Hu Dapao’s hands, and crashed onto the ground with a loud crack, shattering into pieces.
“What happened to you, General Hu?” Huang Ying squatted down to pick up the shattered pieces as she looked up at him curiously.
“I’ve called out for you several times, but you didn’t hear me!” “Don’t bother picking them up anymore!” Hu Dapao said with a glum expression.
“Miss Huang, why are you here?” Huang Ying wore a red brocade cloak on this day.
Her dark hair was plaited into three miniature braids on each side of her head, which were secured together with a pearl hairpin.
A scarlet bloodstone hung down on her forehead, reflecting her large eyes.
She looked bright and beautiful.
“I have a matter to tell you!” Huang Ying giggled and scanned her surroundings, before dragging Hu Dapao to a secluded place.
“Let’s talk over here!” In the tent behind them, Nangong Bi was on tenterhooks after Nangong Shu left.
She wondered why Hu Dapao was being a jerk and refusing to return to Shengjing City.
What if he got into danger again? Would she be unable to repay him for what she owed him for the rest of her life? The young woman’s brows knitted together tightly as she clenched a bunch of dried grass with all her might.
She stomped hard on the ground and walked out of the tent.
She had to find him and ask him personally! When Nangong Bi left the tent, she met Pan Gang, who was passing by.
She stepped forward and stopped him in his tracks.
“Where is your general? Is he in the main tent?” Pan Gang noticed Nangong Bi’s unhappy facial expression and quickly answered truthfully, “No, the general has stepped out!” The soldier beside him hastily chimed in, “I know, General Hu has gone that way just now!” He raised his arm and pointed in the northern direction as he spoke.
“Thanks!” Nangong Bi answered and dashed towards that direction hurriedly.
Huang Ying only stopped when they were further away from the military camp, confident that the soldiers could not hear them.
She turned around and looked at Hu Dapao intently.
“General Hu, are you going back to Shengjing City?” Hu Dapao was stunned for a moment, before shaking his head.
“No, I won’t go back!” “Really?” Huang Ying had heard from her father that Hu Dapao would be heading back to the city together, and she had been worried for a day.
She knew about her father coming to the military camp to report to Prince Rui, and she had hence followed him here early in the morning.
Thus, she was filled with excitement and joy when she heard Hu Dapao’s words.
“Yes!” Hu Dapao was tall and muscular, but his dark eyes did not appear to be bright and cheerful like how they usually did.
His gaze was hazy and gloomy as if they would never see the sunlight again.
Huang Ying stepped forward and took a deep breath before saying, “General Hu, I’m rest assured since you won’t be going back to the city because I like you! I want you to be my husband! “What?” Hu Dapao whipped his head around to look at her, dumbfounded.
“Well done!” A yell suddenly sounded from behind them, as a young woman dressed in military uniform walked over slowly.
Her expression appeared frosty as she stared at them hatefully.
“No wonder Brother said that you were not going back to Shengjing City.
It turns out that the person General Hu fancies is here, so you don’t bear to leave!” Her brother had even said that he had stayed because of her.
It was all fake! Hu Dapao frowned and looked at the young woman awkwardly.
“I…” Huang Ying suddenly stepped forward and raised her brows as she grinned.
“Princess, your words are not making sense.
You were the one who had previously rejected General Hu, and you caused him to come to Youzhou, which was 100,000 miles away from Shengjing City.
Why do you care about the person that General Hu fancies if you don’t even like him?” Nangong Bi stood upright and looked at Huang Ying coldly as she chided fiercely, “Yes, other people do not have the right to pick up what I’ve discarded!” Hu Dapao’s expression changed in an instant as he looked up at the young woman.
He felt bitter, and his heart ached badly.
So it turned out that he was just something she had discarded.
Huang Ying’s gaze turned cold as she stared at Nangong Bi.
“Princess, you are too much!” “Miss Huang!” Hu Dapao interrupted Huang Ying and said hoarsely, “Please go back first.
I have something to say to the princess!” “General Hu, why do you want to be bullied by her? So what if she’s a princess? Does that mean she can look down on other people?” Huang Ying asked in anger.
“Miss Huang,” Hu Dapao said sternly, “Please go back!” Huang Ying snorted and flicked her cloak furiously.
She glared at Hu Dapao exasperatedly, before turning around to run off towards the military camp! As the surroundings quietened down and the northern wind blew past them, all the affection and tenderness that had accumulated between them seemed to have vanished, along with the wind.
Nangong Bi turned her head around and looked at the direction of Mount Hala.
Her chest felt suffocated, and she felt like it was going to explode.
She was angry, upset, and regretful; she felt a mix of emotions that she could not withstand.
Hu Dapao remained silent and did not utter a single word.
He only strode towards the military camp after a long while.
“Hu Dapao, stop!” Nangong Bi rushed forward to block his path and looked up at him with red and swollen eyes.
“Did you refuse to head back to Shengjing City because of that woman?” Hu Dapao looked glum as he replied, “No!” “You’re lying to me! You just said that you won’t leave, yet here she was, opening her heart to you.
Do you still dare to say you’re not leaving because of her?” Nangong Bi shrieked hoarsely.
Hu Dapao frowned and looked at her, before saying softly, “I already said I’m not!” He walked past the young woman upon speaking and strode towards the camp.
Nangong Bi remained where she was, with tears welling up in her eyes.
She was not sure why she was crying as well, but she felt deeply upset.
It was the same feeling she had when she had discovered that she was arranged to be wedded to Hu Dapao previously.
Hu Dapao stopped in his tracks when he vaguely heard her sobbing behind him.
He shut his eyes tightly, thinking that she expected him to come and go at her beck and call.
She had treated him like an item she had discarded, and she did not allow anyone else to fall for him.
She was fearless and was so confident that he would yield to her! However, his mental defense was immediately shattered the moment he saw her tears and heard her sobs.
Admit it, Hu Dapao.
Your life was in the hands of this woman! He then turned around and walked back to the young woman.
He pulled her into his embrace and coaxed with a hoarse voice, “Don’t cry.
It’s my fault for making you upset again!” “Don’t care about me! Haven’t you already left? Why are you back?” Nangong Bi’s face was full of tears as she struggled with all her might.
“Go! Go away!” “I won’t leave, and I won’t go anywhere! I will cling onto you even if you discard me!” Hu Dapao hugged her and said with determination, feeling a pang in his heart.
Nangong Bi paused for a moment, before weeping even more strongly.
Her punches landed on Hu Dapao’s body as if she was venting her frustrations.
“It’s all your fault!” “Yes, it’s all my fault!” Hu Dapao hastily wiped off her tears and coaxed repeatedly with tenderness, “Don’t cry! Don’t cry anymore!” His chest felt tight upon seeing her tears.
Nangong Bi leaned onto Hu Dapao’s body, smearing her snot and tears on his clothes.
She only calmed down after a long while and continued to sob quietly as if she had been mistreated.
“Do you like that woman?” Nangong Bi asked in a heavy nasal voice.
“No!” Hu Dapao answered without hesitation.
Nangong Bi leaned on his chest and grabbed hold of his arms tightly.
She was overjoyed upon hearing his answer, but she masked it with indifference as she quickly asked, “Then why are you not going back to Shengjing City?” Hu Dapao only answered softly after a while, “We will have to marry if I go back! The Emperor would surely not come after me if I continue to stay here!” “…You don’t want to marry me?” Nangong Bi raised her brows and asked.
Hu Dapao swallowed hard and replied, “What do you think?” Nangong Bi blushed instantly as she lowered her gaze in embarrassment.
“I know you don’t want to marry me, and I’m not a good match for you! As such, I should stay here!” Hu Dapao said glumly.
Nangong Bi frowned and stood upright.
“Hu Dapao, how many times do you think the Emperor can tolerate your refusal to adhere to the imperial decree? He was already considered benevolent when he deployed you to Northern Xinjiang! He will slaughter your entire clan if you refuse to adhere to the imperial decree again this time!” “I don’t have a clan.
He can kill me if he wants to!” Hu Dapao replied casually.
“You…!” Nangong Bi stared at him, incandescent with fury.
“You are simply unreasonable! I don’t care, you have to return to Shengjing City this time!” “But we’ll have to get married if I return to Shengjing City! I don’t want to upset you again!” Hu Dapao said stubbornly.
“I will be even more upset if you stay here!” “You don’t have to care about me.
The worst that can happen is for me to get killed!” “Hu Dapao, if you dare to not go back to the city, I…” Nangong Bi gritted her teeth and glared at him.
“I won’t care about you anymore!” She turned around to leave upon speaking.
Hu Dapao hurriedly caught up with her and said nervously, “Fine, fine, I will listen to you! I will go back! But what if we have to get married?” Nangong Bi stopped in her tracks.
With her head lowered, she mumbled softly, “It’s better for us to get married, rather than having the Emperor execute you!”