"Mm, I have a plan in mind," Murong Chun said calmly.
Murong Liang said, "Aren't we supposed to reveal it when the time is right?"
"No, now's the time," said Murong Chun.
Murong Liang asked hurriedly, " Aren't we going to wait until he's about to succeed the throne? Isn't it too early if we reveal it now? I doubt we can do him a lot of damage with this!"
Murong Chun loosened his grip and stood up. He paced around the courtyard with his hands behind his back.
"Let's wait a bit longer. His name's in the spotlight now, but people have only heard of him. He still doesn't have any actual power." Murong Liang said, "If we expose the information we have about him now when the hill master isn't present, nobody will exile him from the hill!"
Their plan was to exploit the bad relationship between the hill master and the young lord and expose the scandals the young lord was involved in to enrage the hill master so that he would exile him from the hill. That way, they would completely remove their obstacle.
In this generation of disciples, Murong Liang had the most powerful aptitude. He did not plan to reveal it anytime soon, though. If Zhuge Tian was exiled, Murong Liang would just have to amaze everyone and win them over in order to become the next hill master.
Murong Chun sighed as he raised his head to gaze at the moon. "I'm just afraid that if we lose this opportunity, we won't be able to keep him under control anymore."
"How's that possible?" Murong Liang was nonchalant about it. "He shouldn't be hoping to become the hill master when he had those scandals! It doesn't matter how powerful his Martial Art is!"
Murong Chun heaved a sigh and shook his head. "It's not that simple."
"Father, were you afraid that you'll get beaten up by him again?" Murong Liang said. "Are you scared of him now?"
Murong Chun turned his head to look at him and burst into laughter. "I'm impressed, young man. You actually aren't even the least bit worried. To be honest, you're definitely no match for him!"
Murong Liang scoffed, "So what if he has superior Martial Art? He should stop thinking about becoming the hill master."
"I feel that he isn't really thinking of being the hill master at the moment." Murong Chun shook his head and said, "His Martial Art is so powerful, so he might feel dissatisfied staying on the hill his whole life. If his scandals are exposed, I think he'll just leave in a fit of rage. He doesn't really have to face the hill master."
"Well..." Murong Liang nodded slowly.
The older you get, the more experience you would have accumulated by then. His father made his moves based on how he thought his opponent would react. It was quite clever of him. If he left the hill… Well, it would be easy for him to leave but for him difficult to return!
"It's just that we're not sure if we can take him down with this," Murong Chun said.
"That's not a problem!" Murong Liang said with absolute confidence, "The crimes he committed are heinous and unacceptable!"
Murong Chun nodded slowly. "I'm just worried that Xia Liyan will cause trouble for us!"
"We have solid evidence. He can't do anything about it!" scoffed Murong Liang.
"What evidence?" a soft voice suddenly interrupted their conversation.
Both of their bodies grew stiff as they turned their head slowly.
They could see a humanoid figure standing in the shadow of the courtyard's wall. The figure slowly walked out from the shadow where the moonlight could cast its gentle glow on him. They immediately recognized the man. Murong Liang could not help but called out, "Zhuge Tian!"
Chu Li sized him up and nodded. "Your complexion looks good. It seems that you're recovering well."
Murong Liang growled, "Why are you here?"
Chu Li looked towards Murong Chun and let out a thin smile. "Elder Murong, I planned on getting along with you, but it seems like we can't all expect the tiger to not want to tear us to pieces!"
Murong Chun sighed. "Young lord, your Light-body Technique is truly remarkable!"
Chu Li said lightly, "You flatter me, Elder Murong. However, let's talk about the 'solid evidence' you've mentioned just now."
"You must've misheard, young lord," said Murong Chun. "There's no such 'solid evidence' whatsoever!"
Chu Li stared at him.
Murong Chun returned his gaze with a grin, hiding all the animosity and guilt in him.
Chu Li walked up to Murong Liang in a single stride, and the tip of Chu Li's sword was already at his throat by then. Then, Chu Li turned his head and looked at Murong Chun. "Elder Murong, do you think I can kill your dearest son with just one stab of my sword?"
"Have mercy, young lord!" Murong Chun held out his hands.
Chu Li sized up Murong Liang. His expression remained unchanged. "He really is something. It would be such a waste to kill him!"
Murong Liang sneered, "Zhuge Tian, kill me if you dare!"
Chu Li simply spared him a glance and continued to talk with that warm and electrifying voice of his as if he was chatting up an old friend. "Why don't I have the guts to kill you?"
"You…" Murong Liang could not find any word in him to respond.
Chu Li glanced at Murong Chun. "Let's not talk about you for a second here. I could easily kill Elder Murong if I felt like it, so why would I not dare to? If anyone asked me about it, I'll just say that I made a mistake while we were sparring. Do you really think that the others would kill me to avenge you?"
"If you do that, everyone will feel endangered. The people of Crouching Bull Mountain won't work as one anymore," Murong Chun said slowly. "Crouching Bull Mountain will basically be done for."
Chu Li broke into a smile. "What does that have to do with me? Do I really need Crouching Bull Mountain?"
"What you just said is wrong, young lord!" Murong Chun said. "You're still only one man no matter how strong your Martial Art is. If you have to deal with a larger force, you'll still need the support of the sect, or else you'd be defeated the instant you're outnumbered."
Chu Li thought about it for a while before nodding. "That makes sense."
He returned his long sword back to its scabbard, and Murong Liang sighed internally. His back was drenched with a layer of cold sweat.
Chu Li said, "I don't like killing either, so I would refrain from it as much as possible... It all depends on the choice you make. If you chose to be my enemy, then I'll have no choice but to send both you and your father to death. But if you guys are tactful enough to decide to be my ally, that'll be the best. I only want to cultivate my Martial Art in peace and don't want any random and complicated matters to bother me!"
"Yes, do be at ease, young lord. We know what to do." Murong Chun quickly nodded. "I'll destroy all the evidence and make sure it doesn't leak to the public."
A hint of a smile graced Chu Li's lips. "It's no wonder Elder Murong is able to retain such a high position. You truly are a man of great wisdom. Your son, however, still seems to harbor some ill intentions within him. I sure hope he doesn't do anything stupid! I apologize for bothering the two of you at this hour. I shall leave now!"
Right after that, he stepped into the shadow by the wall and disappeared as though he had become one with the shadow.
Murong Liang stared at the shadow.
Murong Chun let out a sigh and shook his head.
"Father?" said Murong Liang. "Has he left?"
"Yes, he has!" Murong Chun nodded.
He suddenly regained his composure as if he had become a totally different person.
"Father?" Murong Liang could tell that something was off as he looked at him.
Murong Chun sighed. "Yet another hill master!"
Murong Liang stared at him, perplexed.
Murong Chun studied Murong Liang with a strange gaze. In the end, he sighed and said, "It's true that bloodlines cannot be faked. A dragon will definitely give birth to another dragon!"
Murong Liang was getting more and more confused by the second.
Murong Chun said, "Just then, I felt as though I was looking at a hill master. Young Liang, this is fate. We must give in to it!"
"Father, what do you mean by that? I don't understand." Murong Liang furrowed his brows.
"At first, I had hoped that the young lord wouldn't be brought up well, and you'll have the chance to overthrow him. Your aptitude is the best among your generation of disciples. No one can attain a stronger one than you. But from what I've just seen, it seems that I have made a grave miscalculation. The young lord truly deserved his title as the young lord!"
"Father, you're giving up?" Murong Liang widened his eyes in disbelief.
Murong Chun said, "A wise man would surrender in the face of impossible odds. Do you really think that you can defeat the young lord?"
"Of course!" scoffed Murong Liang. "He's only great in Martial Art. He isn't very intelligent!"
"You're the one who's not smart!" Murong Chun shook his head and said calmly. "His head is definitely working better than yours. There's no way you can beat him. This is exactly how it was for me and the hill master. But we all have only one life in the end. Look for a fine woman, and leave it to your next generation!"
"Father!" Murong Liang cried out in anger and desperation.