Chapter 57: On the right track (Part One)
After the coronation, the spirit world began to run smoothly. After gaining permission from Ouyang Yong and Shi Wangcheng, Ouyang Hongye sent Fenghuo and Wangyue to Nanzhe City with a troop and destroyed all the feeder death ghosts; then they moved all the gold hidden in the palace to the capital city. Of course, Wangyue got his wish and brought back all the wine stored by the Nanzhe City Master to the capital city.
After consulting with the two elders, Ouyang Xiaoleng and Ouyang Hongye allocated part of the gold to the relatively worse-off cities and assigned some counts to rebuild and manage these cities. Ouyang Hongye was in charge of the management of the capital city and the army recruitment. At Ouyang Yong and Shi Wangcheng’s advice, the counts and aristocrats in the spirit world were registered and ranked again according to the new criteria and the results of voting. The criteria included not only their ancestors’ ranking, but their achievements in previous battles and the development of the spirit world. This method was fair to everyone and brought the chaotic world into order; during the process, Ouyang Xiaoleng gradually built up his own reputation and authority. However, most of the people still avoided talking about Green Cloud, not to mention accepting the fact that they’d face another war against him.
As the master of the world, Ouyang Xiaoleng was destined to have a lonely life. Before he met Xia Qiu, loneliness was his constant companion but now he felt uncomfortable when she wasn’t with him; furthermore, he even missed the bickering with Qianqi.
Most of the time, he stayed in the Yuheng Hall all by himself. His parents had lived in here but his memories of them were fuzzy and fragmental. Ever since they died, this place had been sealed up and become a desolate forbidden zone.
Now, with the arrival of the new king, the place became lively again. At his request, his parents’ rooms were kept as they had been. The books that his father had read were still on the bookshelves; the writing set his father had used was still placed on the desk; the make-up boxes and jewelries that his mother had used were still on the dressing table. In the days when Xia Qiu was away, he’d sit in the room or the courtyard. Sometimes, he’d dream about his mother’s smiles and the tunes that his father used to play when he was little.
After returning from the Crane Spring Land, he hadn’t stepped out of the North Star Palace, which was a decision made by Ouyang Yong and Ouyang Hongye after some careful consideration. As the youngest Fox Spirit King in history, Ouyang Xiaoleng ascended to the throne when the spirit world was declining. Considering that Green Cloud and the other people who coveted the power might make an attempt for his life, they had to restrict his freedom to keep him safe.
Ouyang Xiaoleng’s residence, Yuheng Hall, was guarded tightly and no one could enter it except for his spirit servants and guards. But he was still young and didn’t want to live like a bird in cage despite his liking for solitary. If not for the restraint, he’d have run to Xia Qiu’s side; but now all he could do was wait for her return. His restless soul could only be soothed by her company.
Hearing that she was back, he immediately headed out toward the Fuxing Hall but was stopped by the guards at the gate of the Yuheng Hall. The guards told him that Ouyang Hongye had instructed him to stay inside. Ouyang Xiaoleng was incensed that he couldn’t even move freely inside the North Star Palace even though he knew they were doing it for his safety; after all, he was now the master of the spirit world.
As he was about to get out by force, Xia Qiu came and his anger evaporated.
“I’ve lost my freedom. I begin to wonder if becoming the master of the spirit world was a good thing for me or not,” Ouyang Xiaoleng complained; of course, he only said these words in front of her.
“You just ascended to the throne. Hongye did it for the sake of your safety!” she comforted him.
“Yeah, I know. I’m happy that you’re back! How did it go?”
Ouyang Xiaoleng’s cool words “I’m happy that you’re back” touched her heart. After all, what was more delightful than being needed by the boy she loved? She told him how Dong Muya got the information about the spirit white crane and connected it with the background of the Feather Crane Immortal. He nodded as he listened.
Then he asked, “How did you detoxify his poison?”
“We used dragon blood… Grandpa Yong told me how precious the dragon blood is and that dragons are very noble and seldom give away their blood. But Qianqi donated his dragon blood to help me for the second time.”
Ouyang Xiaoleng heard guilt from her voice. In fact, he shared her sense of guilt. It was his responsibility to protect her and help her fulfill her wishes, but he had failed her. Instead, Qianqi could guard her more freely. When Xia Qiu was kidnapped by Mother Rakshasa, Qianqi had risked his life to rescue her; when she was taken away by the Feather Crane Immortal, Qianqi looked more furious than he did and never tried to disguise it. Compared with Qianqi, he looked more reserved, even when Xia Qiu was involved. As he blamed himself, his resentment for Qianqi evaporated.
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