Ancient Strengthening Technique - Chapter 862
AST 862 - Azure Cloud Pavilion, The Eldest Daughter of Mu Clan
Azure Cloud Pavilion!
This was a pavilion located at the Heaven Stepping Road, as well as a business quarter of the Mu Clan. Dong Yan brought Qing Shui and Sun Yan into the pavilion to meet a new acquaintance.
Dong Yan had a strange smile on his face when he mentioned the person they were going to meet.
’’Qing Shui, do you want to know who you're going to meet?’’ Dong Yan maintained a smile as he glanced toward Qing Shui. They continued their pace causally into the pavilion.
’’Of course!’’ Qing Shui smiled but set his eyes on the Azure Cloud Pavilion instead. This area stood out as an elegant architecture, with the exception of the simple undecorated doors. There was a large tablet above the door, with the words 'Azure Cloud Pavilion' inscribed beautifully on the surface.
The handwriting was clearly a woman's. He could feel a strong air of elegance as he stood outside the entrance of the Azure Cloud Pavilion with the others.
Qing Shui was immediately curious just from the sense of the surrounding aura. He wanted to know who he was going to meet as he turned his head to face Dong Yan with an expression of anticipation.
’’There are many beautiful women in the capital but the most beautiful woman I have ever met would be the eldest daughter of the Mu Clan. She is the finest woman in the capital without question,’’ Dong Yan said as he smiled at Qing Shui.
Qing Shui now understood why Dong Yan would have such an expression whenever he mentioned the Mu Clan in their conversations.
’’In other words, you're saying that the leader of the expedition to the Sky Penetrating Mountain is none other than the eldest daughter of the Mu Clan?’’ Qing Shui looked at Dong Yan with surprise.
’’Correct. The Azure Cloud Pavilion is the living quarters of miss Mu. She has been leading the expedition to the Sky Penetrating Mountain for a few years already.’’ Qing Shui could feel a sense of gloominess from Dong Yan when he mentioned the woman of the Mu Clan.
As they approached the front entrance of the Azure cloud Pavilion, two maidservants appeared and walked out from the door.
’’Young Master Dong, welcome!’’ The maidservants were petite, yet their voices were clear and strong but with a tinge of politeness. They were said to be one of the best of their kinds as well.
’’Is the young lady available?’’ Dong Yan asked the maidservants with a grin. Currently, Dong Yan wasn't the frivolous man he was at the Dongfang Clan but a gentle brother of the neighborhood.
’’Could it be that Dong Yan likes young miss Mu?’’ Qing Shui allowed himself a smile as he looked at Dong Yan. He decided to ask Dong Yan himself later during his free time.
’’Yes. She's upstairs drawing. Young Master Dong, you may enter now.’’ The maidservants showed polite smiles and proceeded upstairs immediately. Before they left to announce their arrival to the eldest daughter of the Mu Clan, they took a few glances at Qing Shui and Sun Yan standing behind Dong Yan.
The three of them started walking into the Azure Cloud Pavilion. The building inside was moderately spaced - not too spacious and not too narrow. The living room on the ground floor was less than a thousand square meters. The hallways stretched in curves, creeping upwards in winding paths. An aura of nobility filled the air, with a subtle smell of books lingering between the hallways.
The scent of books was the best smell in the world.
The three of them strolled along the hallway and followed the stairs covered in red silk upwards. The pavilion was three-storeys high and most importantly, there was a strange rule that they had to follow in this building.
The rule was set up due to the overwhelming number of people who wished to gain an audience with the eldest daughter of the Mu Clan. Strangers were allowed to enter but they must display some sort of specialty in order to remain inside. If one failed to show an extraordinary skill to her, the outcome would be unthinkable. In the past, two wealthy men had thought she was easy to push around and disobeyed the rule. They were able to go inside the Azure Cloud Pavilion and got out without any problem. But as they reached the streets, they began to go mad and fought each other in public. Their clothes were shredded in the process and as a result, they brought shame to their family. Subsequently, both the wealthy men took off from the capital, as they were too embarrassed and humiliated to remain any longer.
From then on, no one had dared to plot against the Azure Cloud Pavilion ever again. Demon refiners have many tricks up their sleeves and Miss Mu was no exception as her power was known to be around the level of a Peak Martial Saint. She was the best demon refiner in the city, with the ability to stun her opponents with a small crystalloid, causing them to go mad.......
The three of them continued toward the third floor, where the space was increasingly becoming narrower. The whole area had been segmented into three parts too. As they climbed to the third floor, the two maidservants were already standing in front of the door, waiting for their arrival.
At the far end, there was a woman standing in front of a long desk but with her back facing them. Qing Shui shuddered when he saw her back. He couldn't quite describe his exact feelings.
The slender and tall woman was wearing a golden phoenix pleated dress with wings stretching to both sides of the fabric. The phoenix pattern seemed quite vivid and lifelike, with realistic details down to the fine points. Her hair was tied up high in a bun, which brought out the beautiful structure of her long powdered neck.
The slightly loose dress could not cover the silhouette of her figure. Although her bosom and her butt were not exaggeratedly defined, they were quite noticeable as the graceful outlines pushed against her clothes.
No wonder Dong Yan said she was one in a million in the Eastern God Country. Undeniably, she could easily best all the women in the continent without much competition solely with the view of her back. Moreover, Qing Shui could sense a fluctuation of pure Spiritual Qi from the woman's body, which in a way, could be a reflection of her charm.
In a sense, her beauty was on par with the women in the Portraits of Beauty. His arrival in the Eastern Victory divine Continent was quite theatrical when he recalled his journey so far. Even though the purpose of coming to the Azure Cloud Pavilion was largely due to him, he was able to do so because of Dong Yan.
The three of them stood still. Sun Yan and Qing Shui did so because Dong Yan wasn't moving. Sun Yan in particularly was entranced by the view of her back. After staring at the woman for awhile, he finally sighed and cocked his head to the side.
’’Why are you sighing, sir?’’
At that moment, a clear voice rang out. Her voice was mellow, which sounded graceful to their ears, as if they were being lifted up in the air gently like a feather. Qing Shui had heard similar voices like hers before - for example, Di Chen, Yiye Jiange, Canghai Mingyue and Hai Dongqing;their voices had somewhat similar effects...... Even though their tones were different, their voices were very pleasant to the ears.
’’My dearest miss, I feel unworthy to be graced with the view of your back.’’ Sun Yan smiled bitterly.
Qing Shui didn't expect Sun Yan to speak such words. The woman in front of the long desk didn't seem to show a big reaction. Instead, she put down her paint brush and slowly turned around to reveal a divine appearance that could captivate the hearts of men.
Her pleasantly arched brows sat proportionally on her smooth-looking skin, in contrast to the her bright gleaming eyes. Her shoulders were sharply padded, which enhanced her graceful figure and her independant aura. She was a refined woman, much like a delicate orchid arching in an elegant posture.
The golden phoenix dress added a touch of nobility to her poise, making her seem like a fairy from the Ninth Heavens.
Despite her elegance and refined demeanor, Qing Shui still felt that the woman from the crystal coffin was more divine than she was. However, this eldest daughter of the Mu Clan was not inferior as she possessed an elegance akin to the woman in the crystal coffin - both of them were sophisticated and charming in a similar fashion.
’’Mr. Dong, these two must be your friends,’’ the woman's voice rang out once again. Her voice was quite pleasant. Listening to her voice was a very invigorating experience.
’’They are my sworn brothers, closer than biological brothers, in fact,’’ said Dong Yan. He added the last few words nonchalantly, yet he was quite serious about his choice of words.
Miss Mu and Dong Yan had known each other for a while and she knew the young master of Dong Clan was very perceptive toward people who had attempted to approach him, which was why he only had a handful of friends. However, every man was born to be exceptional. If these two could become Dong Yan's brothers of close bonds, then it was enough to say that these two men were undoubtedly outstanding and remarkable.
’’Rules are rules. If you want to stay in the Azure Cloud Pavilion, then you must show me a specialty skill that will allow me to feel content,’’ the woman curved her lips as she said to Dong Yan, Qing Shui and Sun Yan.
There was a hint of mystery in her tone. Her voice was undeniably as beautiful as ever.
Sun Yan glanced toward Qing Shui and nodded his head. Then he extended his right arm, promptly gathering an overwhelming Spiritual Qi around his body from the surroundings of the room. It was at this moment that the woman finally spoke in a clear voice, ’’You pass!’’
’’Your turn!’’ Sun Yan prodded Qing Shui after a moment of silence. He wanted to see Qing Shui's specialty skill - something extraordinary to satisfy his curiosity.
’’Patience, brother. Let me think for a moment. There's too many to choose from and I can only show one.’’ Qing Shui wasn't fooling around but 'too many' wasn't entirely true either. He racked his brain trying to think of one skill that would truly awe the woman in one fell swoop.
The others were left speechless by Qing Shui's words. How many specialties would one require in this world? Normally, having one specialty skill was enough to defy nature, much less having multiple up his sleeves.
’’Were you drawing just now, miss?’’ Qing Shui perked his head up and asked the woman.
’’Yes, I was!’’
Qing Shui paused, then continued to asked the woman, ’’Well, does drawing count as a specialty?’’
’’Of course. The greatest artist can conquer the whole world with painting alone,’’ she smiled as she answered Qing Shui.
’’Then I will paint a portrait!' Qing Shui said while thinking of a subject to paint.
’’Please go ahead!’’
Initially, he thought about using her as the subject but that would be quite disrespectful to do so as they had just met each other. Qing Shui picked up her paintbrush and proceeded to dip the brush into the 'ink' with his eyes closed.
The woman's expression changed as she kept watch on his movements. Her eyes were brightly lit and she found herself staring at him with anticipation.
Suddenly, Qing Shui's blood flow turned berserk, which seemed quite exaggerated yet necessary. It was quite indescribable when he felt an abrupt change to his blood flow and before he knew it, he began moving his hands. His brushwork was flexible and lively with a bit of force in his movement. After a while, he had made a rough sketch of his art.
An outline of a beautiful figure appeared on the portrait.
After that, the facial features of the portrait became more distinct. The more distinct the portrait appeared, the more shocking the woman was. Within a few moments, Dong Yan and Sun Yan had the same expression as the woman as they continued to follow Qing Shui's brushwork on the portrait.
When he finally finished the portrait, he stopped and put down the brush before he opened his eyes. Even though he took a lot more time compared to Sun Yan, he had shown a unyielding flow in his effort to accomplish his composition of the portrait. Qing Shui took the effort to draw the portrait with unfathomable details, resulting in a portrait akin to a live figure of a beautiful woman.
The woman in the portrait had her hair tied up high. Her brows were soft-looking, illustrating a kind expression on her white face. The white complexion wasn't a product of a powdered makeup but her natural skin with a hint of rosy glow. She had the features of a goddess but with a pair of eyes depicting the cold winds of winter.
Even though her eyes were beautiful, there was a hint of hatred and helplessness in addition to the dazed expression in her eyes. With one look at the portrait, everyone could tell that the woman in the portrait was undeniably as beautiful as the eldest daughter of the Mu Clan - the figure in the portrait was a woman as dignified as the goddess.
Qing Shui didn't realize that he had drawn the woman from the crystal coffin. Worst of all, he had drawn the exact expression of the woman when she woke up and stared at him......
Looking at the portrait, Qing Shui was inevitably brought back to the memories of that moment. The woman in the crystal coffin did not kill him but spared him instead. She must be hating herself for not being able to kill him right away.
Qing Shui let out a long breath of air, as if he was letting out a deep sigh of relief.
’’So cold but so beautiful. Is she your wife?’’ The eldest daughter of Mu Clan asked curiously. She didn't expect this man to possess a skill in drawing much superior than hers, much more superior, in fact.
Qing Shui was stunned by her question but shook his head to her reply. He wasn't prepared for her question but didn't want to brush her off without giving a definite answer. In such circumstance, one would require much practice to be able to draw a woman to such an extent, even without emotions or personal feelings.......
Qing Shui wasn't troubled by her question. He put on a smile and replied, ’’I'm not sure if this is considered a skill. If it's not, I can try something else.’’
’’You really do have other skills? Are you sure you want to show something else?’’ The woman smirked.
’’Then this should be enough. Let's leave it at that!’’ Qing Shui didn't want to expose his abilities too much, so showing another one was quite unnecessary. He had other aces up in his sleeves but who wouldn't have at least more than one in order to survive in this world?
’’Then sit wherever you please!’’ The woman welcomed them to the 'couch' inside. In front of the couch was a small table with cups of tea freshly prepared moments ago.
’’Actually, Miss Mu, today we came to ask you for a favor,’’ Dong Yan spoke slowly after they had all settled down.
’’Oh, do tell. You rarely ask favors from others, so I will not refuse if it's within my capability.’’