“Tomorrow we shall…”
“Master, can you please hear me out?” Lin Yingmei reached out to interrupt him, her words carrying with it a hint of desperation.
Shu Jing nodded, indicating for her to continue.
“Can this servant go and resolve this matter by herself?” Lin Yingmei asked.
“Are you afraid that I will get in your way?” Shu Jing smiled. He lowered his voice: “For better or worse, I have already reached Stardust Middle Stage.”
Lin Yingmei shook her head: “If what Song Lu said was true, this Gou Zi must have quite a few star cultivators working under him. Master, your strength has only just begun to grow, and while this Linchong believes that you will one day be able to surpass this servant, right now I wish to do this myself!”
“No, it is equally dangerous for either of us to go!” Shu Jing shook his head. Even though Lin Yingmei’s words made sense, it wasn’t something his heart could peacefully agree to. “How about this, let us both go. When we are at the fortress, you may go and act on your own, but it depends on the situation.”
Lin Yingmei fell deep into thought. In the end it seems like it could only be like that. Right now, her Master did not seem to be afraid of the thing called danger.
The next day, Shu Jing and Lin Yingmei said goodbye to Song Lu before departing for the Grand Border Fortress.
Even though Thousand Mount Kingdom was only a small kingdom in the Liangshan Continent, the Grand Border Fortress still had an impressive aura. The walls of the fortress was 15 metres high and 10 kilometres long. A watch tower was stationed every 150 metres, and about half the distance between each watch tower was the effective range of the arrows. It was easily capable of killing any approaching enemies. Even though he had been in Liangshan Continent for some time, this was the first time Shu Jing had came in contact with one of this world’s cities.
The Grand Border Fortress was several times larger than Song Clan Village. Its walls were white and adorned with green tiles, its barricade full of engravings, and its material made from jade. Buildings connected together on and on, with no shortage of people in colourful clothing coming and going, creating a bustling atmosphere in the air.
After heading inside the Grand Border Fortress, Shu Jing suggested that they should first investigate the current situation before making any plans. Lin Yingmei did not object, so Shu Jing, who was in no mood to linger in the Fortress, headed directly towards the Crown Prince Palace.
According to Song Lu’s information, this Prince Gou Zi has been commanding here for five years. Beneath him was the fifteen thousand strong garrison of soldiers of the Grand Border Fortress, as well as over a dozen star cultivators. Among them, the most noteworthy were the two guest elders.
These two guest elders were not only Nebula Stage cultivators, they were also supported by two Nebula Artifacts. When it comes to Nebula Artifacts, Shu Jing had witnessed their impressiveness firsthand. At the Mountain Lake Legacy, daoist Xun Tian had only needed a Nebula Dragon Tail Whisk to push them to the brink of death, injuring even Lin Yingmei’s Arctic Star Serpent Spear. If not for the Chaotic Tail Escape Technique, the outcome would have been much worse.
These two elder’s Divine Souls were gigantic. They would be able to immediately sense any star energy fluctuations in the entirety of the Grand Border Fortress. Hence Shu Jing and Lin Yingmei could only hide their traces.
After observing from the outside for some time, they could see a group of men on horseback returning back to the Palace.
The man riding on a white horse had a face like jade, his clothing was regal and refined, his aura bright and clear, his face elated. Next to him was an older man wearing a robe with a wooden sword in his hands and a younger man wearing a large round hoop. Their attitude was in total contrast with the soldiers around them. These cultivators seemed somewhat out of place with their relaxed and arrogant attitude. Without needing to guess, these were most likely the two Elders Song Lu mentioned.
“Congratulation Your Highness, if you really do become a Star Master, please don’t forget about this old man.”
“Haha, I would be depending on the both of you even more then.” Crown Prince Gou Zi laughed out loud.
“If I was not late in entering the star cultivator’s ranks, I may have had the chance to become a Star Master.” The seemingly younger man spoke regretfully.
“Expert Wen He is a talented genius. Given time, maybe you could even enter the Annihilation Stage. At that point, what meaning would a mere Liangshan Star Knight have for you?” Gou Zi flattered.
Even though it was just the third cultivation rank, the Galaxy Stage was already far out of his reach, but listening to the crown prince’s compliments still made the young man extremely happy. “Your Highness, please do not forget about supplying me with what I require either. I have been waiting for my “Five Restoration Fundamental Pellet” for a long time now.”
“I would not dare to forget about that. I have already sent out several scoutmasters to search for it.”
“That would be for the best.”
The group headed inside the Palace.
“Soon, I will travel from place to place and start several fires. Wait until the Elders leave, then you head in and get to work. Understood?” Shu Jing carefully explained.
Lin Yingmei nodded. She began to speak, but then paused, “But when the time comes, if Master can…”
Why would Shu Jing not know what she had wanted to say? “ I know, once your identity is exposed, they will know you are a Star Knight and the Elders will definitely search for your contracted Master. No matter what, killing me is far easier than dealing with you. Don’t worry, I’m not someone unreasonable. At that time I will move far away from the Crown Prince Palace.”
“Thank you, Master, for understanding!” Lin Yingmei pursed her lips.
Shu Jing revealed a smile. As he was about to leave, he suddenly stopped and turned around: “Lin Yingmei, do you feel regret about our contract? If it was just you by yourself like before, it wouldn’t be this troublesome, would it?”
“From now on, Linchong will never dare to regret it!” Lin Yingmei spoke seriously.
“Remember to be careful.”
“Master too,” Lin Yingmei reminded him.
Looking at Lin Yingmei’s figure, Shu Jing couldn’t help but feel a strange reluctance. His instinct told him that things wouldn’t be as simple as it seemed right now. If his cultivation was higher, things wouldn’t need to be this troublesome. “This anxiousness must not be allowed.” Shu Jing mumbles. His body shook, and all traces of him disappeared from the spot.
Lin Yingmei lurked near the Crown Prince Palace’s surroundings.
Not long after, a thick layer of smoke began to rise up from a corner of the Grand Border Fortress. Lin Yingmei’s entire body tensed up in preparation. She knew that her Master had begun to take action. Soon, the fort was covered in black smoke. A man on horseback quickly reported to Gou Zi at the Palace, and within moments a trail of light immediately flew out. It seemed to be the younger cultivator of the two. As the smoke got thicker and more numerous, even the Palace was surrounded by the sounds of fire alarms and panic.
A number of soldiers belonging to the Prince had since left the Palace, but ever since the younger Nebula cultivator had left, there was yet to be a glimpse of the older cultivator. This Crown Prince Gou Zi really did seem to be careful. Lin Yingmei knew she couldn’t afford to wait any longer. She immediately summoned the Arctic Star Serpent Spear and flew towards the Crown Prince’s Palace.
The Palace servants began calling out when they spotted Lin Yingmei.
Over a hundred soldiers dashed out with their blades, as if they had been prepared all along from all corners of the Palace.
Lin Yingmei softly exclaimed before slashing downward with her spear. The Arctic Star Serpent Spear treated the soldiers as if they were mere grass, blowing them away without resistance . However, these soldiers were on a totally different level than those who had attacked Song Lu’s place. Even when realising that they were facing a Star Knight, none of them retreated but continued to risk their life fighting.
Towards this bravery, Lin Yingmei returned to them the greatest of compliments — Death!
The Arctic Star Serpent Spear made a breathtaking arc through the air, radiating light akin to electricity. As the fight went on, all the soldier’s weapons and armour proved incapable of handling just one of her attacks. In but moments, the courtyard was dyed red.
“Fall back!!” A loud shout suddenly resounded.
The silhouette of a powerful figure appeared, aiming an attack right at Lin Yingmei’s forehead. This powerful attack was capable of emptying lakes and moving the earth.
Lin Yingmei’s glanced at him coldly.
The Arctic Star Serpent Spear promptly stopped the attack in its track. It then followed Lin Yingmei’s momentum and flew up, causing a formidable spear light to shoot out, cutting an entire nearby pavilion in half. The figure’s face furrowed in shock, and turned pale like ashes.
The powerful enemy retreated, blood streaming from their mouth.
Lin Yingmei was just about to lift up her spear to continue attack when a sudden arrogant voice rang out from behind her: “Calling On The Ninth Heaven, Absolute Extinction Governing Lightning, Release!”
Abruptly, a dark storm cloud appeared directly above Lin Yingmei’s head. One could only see that with the movement of the sword, the storm cloud became animated, splitting out a small patch of black cloud. A deafening thunder sounded out as a lightning bolt smashed towards the location where Lin Yingmei was standing.
The entire courtyard was blown apart. Several soldiers who did not take cover in time lost their lives.
After the powerful shock dissipated, the courtyard had turned into a mess.
“How is it?” Gou Zi rushed out from the room and asked.
The old Nebula Stage Cultivator’s expression was fierce. In his hand was the ancient sword and a talisman, and he kept up his guard without a tiny bit of negligence. On the other hand, the younger Elder was sweating bullets as he struggled to control his Nebula Artifact, the “Thunder Cry Sword”.
The dust settled while a chilling cold breath befell them.
Lin Yingmei appeared in front of everyone’s eyes. The lightning strike had clearly wounded her slightly.
“You are the Majestic Star, Panther Head Linchong!!” Gou Zi was not scared. Instead, he seemed excessively excited.
“It is I!”
Lin Yingmei gripped her spear and stepped forward. Suddenly, a large circle of light appeared on the ground surrounding her. The circle array comprised of stars caused Lin Yingmei to feel that all her energy was being consumed and her body pressed down by a mountain, impossible to move.
Lin Yingmei’s usually indifferent expression began to change.
“What is this array?”
“It is the Heavenly Cycle Northern Dipper Array, and it has been waiting just for you!!!”
Gou Zi deliriously shouted.
Oh no, it was a trap!
Master is in danger!
Lin Yingmei’s face turned pale.
Not good, Lin Yingmei is in danger!
A strange dark cloud released a bright lighting strike that caused the entire Grand Border Fortress to shake in fear. Shu Jing who was fanning the flames looked at the distanced lightning, a powerful feeling of unease welling up in his heart.
Without any hesitation, Shu Jing pulled out Silver Blade and headed towards the Crown Prince Palace.
Crown Prince Palace
Those who were involved all stood around the Heavenly Cycle Northern Dipper Array. They stared in fear at the Star Knight who was currently struggling with all her might inside.
“It really is the Majestic Star!!” The elder revealed a shocked expression.
“Seems like he didn’t deceive me!!” Gou Zi tried his best to control his emotions. Linchong. Ah, you are Panther Head Linchong. Just thinking about being able to sign a contract with the legendary Majestic Star made him uncontrollably happy. This was definitely proof that he did not waste all the resources he used in the past year to make this Heavenly Cycle Northern Dipper Array. While this array specialised in restraining the Majestic Star may look impressive, it had its limitations. The contract must be relatively newly signed, also, the Star Master must not go near the Majestic Star in order for it to work effectively.
When Star Knights and their Masters were separated, their connected power also weakened. This array was designed to take advantage of this exact phenomenon. If it was not able to absorb the Majestic Star’s source of power, this array would also be useless.
“I never thought that it would actually be the famous impossible-to-contract Majestic Star.” The younger cultivator retrieved the Thunder Cry Sword while looking at Lin Yingmei with eyes full of doubt.
“Elders, let us not celebrate too hastily. We must not let her Master come near the Palace, or the Majestic Star can use that chance to break the array, which will make things even more difficult.” Crown Prince Gou Zi saluted. “I beg the two elders to stop him.”
“This is no problem. The Majestic Star has been restrained by this array, which means that her contracted master’s cultivation must not be higher than the Stardust Stage. Crushing him right now would be nothing, we also need to help the Crown Prince get rid of potential problems.”
“You dare…” Lin Yingmei gnashed her teeth while trying to stand up. The array full of stars immediately circulated, causing all her efforts to go to naught.
The two elders flew out from the Palace and began their search for Lin Yingmei’s Contracted Master.
Gou Zi turned and looked towards Lin Yingmei with eyes filled with maniacal greed.