Chapter 20 – Mrs. Long San is strong in martial arts
Feng Ning’s overwhelming presence not only wowed the assassins, she also gave the Long family guards quite a scare, but inside the house, Grandma Yu was thinking something else entirely. She clenched her fists tightly in shock and suspicion, Feng Ning was actually secretly such a powerful martial artist? Even after three years in the Long Family, she managed to conceal that fact from everyone.
Just now, Feng Ning had shouted for everyone to arrange themselves into a four row formation, which gave Grandma Yu’s heart a shock as well, Grandma Yu doesn’t understand martial arts or combat formations too well, but she does know that every piece of vegetation in the Long Family and even the way the house and garden were constructed was all according to various strategic formations in order to protect everyone.
The martial family servants might not all be strong in martial arts, but everyone’s trained in combat formations before, in preparation against enemy attacks. These combat formations also have to do with the way that the house is strategically constructed. Grandma Yu’s been with the Long Family for all her life, without understanding the difference between formations, but Feng Ning understands.
If anyone ever says that Feng Ning is a simple, innocent, ignorant girl again, Grandma Yu thinks that she’ll be the first one to disagree with that statement from now on. Since nobody in charge is here right now, she can only hope that Feng Ning doesn’t suddenly return to her original ways, and make mischief during all this trouble.
Feng Ning had no idea that Grandma Yu was thinking a million things right now through the door behind her, but she was also having a flash of insight right now, feeling like something was off.
Why were these assassins attacking the servants’ quarters? There’s no treasure or important people here. Their leader’s martial arts don’t seem to be especially strong either, she feels like if she gives it her all, she could probably even defeat him. They dare to challenge the Tulong Manor with just this?
While Feng Ning was busy in thought, the enemies suddenly started yelling: “attack!” The masked assassins rushed over while shouting loudly, and Feng Ning could hear some of the guards behind her beginning to panic, at which she suddenly realized, the best martial artist family guards in the Long Family aren’t here right now either, with such a big commotion, why aren’t they here yet? There’s probably a fight going on somewhere else right now as well. The assassins’ real target isn’t this place!
Feng Ning raised her blade, and with a loud shout, joined the battle as she intercepted their leader, and sliced several times at him while shouting to the guards: “don’t panic, don’t take risks, protect the house.” Grandma Yu and those unarmed maids and servants are still hiding inside, they’re all family to her, and since Long San isn’t here right now, it’s all up to her to protect her family.
Feng Ning doesn’t actually know if her martial arts is any good or not, she can’t remember where she learned it, or who her master was, or who she’s fought in the past, she just knows that she does know martial arts, every one of her attacks are flowing naturally inside her head, her blade was even creating the sound of wind as it sliced through the air, and she ignored everything else that was going on and kept relentlessly attacking the assassins’ leader.
The assassins’ leader was gradually losing to Feng Ning, their battle started on the ground, moved to the roof, and changed back down to the ground again, that person gradually lost his patience, while he tried his best to block her attacks, he shouted at the other assassins: “hurry up and start using fire arrows, and force everyone out of the house.”
Feng Ning instantly understood their intentions, their target was Grandma Yu, none of the other servants were as important, but to the master of the Long Family, Grandma Yu is as close to him as an actual relative, and if the assassins weren’t able to succeed elsewhere, they could take Grandma Yu hostage in order to blackmail the Long Family.
After realizing this, Feng Ning abandoned her fight with the assassins’ leader, and immediately turned around to attack the assassins on the roof that were beginning to prepare fire arrows. When the assassins’ leader was free from his predicament, he didn’t bother with Feng Ning anymore either, and immediately sprinted towards Grandma Yu’s room. The original plan had been very simple, against a bunch of low level guards, they should have been more than enough to capture an old grandma, but they never expected that such a tough tomboy would have been here. He was completely focused on completing his task, to the point where his eyes were bloodshot, and he arrived in front of Grandma Yu’s room, as long as he entered and captured the old grandma successfully, victory would be his.
He kicked away a guard, and sliced another guard with his backhand, and he kicked in the door blocking his way, causing the maids and servants inside to scream in fear, and he instantly spied the old grandma that everyone was guarding in the middle, and he was overjoyed, just as he was about to get her, he felt a sharp gust of wind caused by a blade behind his back, and he hurriedly twisted his body, but he didn’t dodge it in a time, and a large cut was left on his arm.
Feng Ning didn’t pause in her attack either, and immediately continued her attack, leaving the assassins’ leader without any other method except to jump twice in order to avoid her attacks, backing out of the door and returning to the courtyard. Feng Ning pressured him closely in close-quarters combat, saying: “you let your guard down with victory in sight, that’s a big mistake, death beckons you.”
As Grandma Yu watched Feng Ning’s back as she furiously fought, she was thinking: Feng Ning’s even using Jianghu slang, there’s no way she’s some classy lady from an upper-class Huzhou family, she’s definitely a liar.
At this moment, quite a few of the assassins had already fallen in the courtyard, but the fire was engulfing the house, so Feng Ning commanded the remaining guards to encircle the rest of the assassins and force them into a corner, while also shouting to behind her: “hurry and escort Grandma Yu to safety.”
Everyone immediately started running towards the safe area cleared out for them by the guards with Grandma Yu in their midst, and when the assassins saw the grandma with them, they all desperately fought to reach her, but Feng Ning blocked them by herself, stealing a blade from someone, and fought while dual-wielding, as the rear guard for Grandma Yu’s group, she sliced two assassins, and under her leadership, they were somehow successful in keeping the assassins contained in the courtyard.
Grandma Yu escaped under everyone’s protection, and saw two servants wielding clubs rushing over here, she grabbed one person’s wrist and asked: “is the study alright?”
While panting, he replied: “Li Ke and the others are doing their best to defend against them, we’ve already sent for reinforcements, as long as we can hold up long enough for the reinforcements to get here, we should be fine.”
As expected, her worst fears came true. Their timing was so perfect, attacking while the master of the Long Family wasn’t home. Both the study and the servants’ quarters were attacked, with such specific targets, it’s unbelievable to think that there wasn’t someone inside assisting them.
The servant said: “the defense mechanisms in the main hall are off right now, hurry up and go there, Grandma.” Grandma Yu nodded, and hurried to the main hall with everyone, she knows that there’s no use to her staying, that she would only be a hindrance and slow everyone down, since everything about the main hall is constructed in a special manner, and there’s secret underground passages within as well, to be used for the Long Family’s escape route during danger, it’s serving its purpose right now perfectly.
Grandma Yu rushed to the main hall and rested a bit, while ordering some more people to go and guard the study, Feng Ning arrived with a couple of guards, while still in the distance and panting, she shouted: “is everyone alright?”
When she got closer and took a good look, seeing Grandma Yu and everyone else resting without any problems, she smiled happily, wiped her face a bit without caring about the blood stains that she couldn’t get off, and asked: “has anyone reported this to the officials? There’s a fire and even assassins here, people outside must surely know about this already, don’t panic.”
Grandma Yu didn’t reply, but some servants were taking off with the guards that had just arrived to assist the study, and Feng Ning suddenly realized: “the study’s under attack as well? All the important things for the family are there, right? I’ll go!”
Just as she was about to leave, Grandma Yu grabbed on to her wrist, and said: “Feng Ning, you should stay by my side instead, and just in case something happens, we’ll be able to deal with it better.”
Feng Ning paused for a bit, and met Grandma Yu’s eyes, and was confused for quite a while, until she finally realized, and pulled free from Grandma Yu’s grasp, and said in a heavy voice: “Grandma, the situation’s already like this, please trust me for once.” After saying so, she ran off towards the study without even looking back.
She could hear the sounds of fighting far off in the distance, the study was indeed where the main forces were concentrated. Feng Ning remembered back to the mechanisms and formations defending the study, it seems that this study is probably where the things most important to the Long Family are hidden. At thinking so, she increased her pace, while she can’t erase the things she’s done in the past, right now even she can help out the Long family, and since Long San treats her so kindly, if not for any other reason, she’ll defend this place to the death just for his sake.
She jumped onto the ornamental mountain, and saw several dead bodies on the ground, while about a dozen or so Long Family guards that seemed familiar were in battle with several assassins, Feng Ning took a good look at the shape of the land and the lay of the mechanisms, and was about to go assist them, when the shining reflection of the moon on the nearby lake’s surface suddenly blinded Feng Ning’s eyes.
Feng Ning’s legs gave out from under her, and she almost fell off the ornamental mountain, she tried her best to correct her balance, and she held her head that was feeling dizzy, but the image of the lake was already burned into her mind, she closed her eyes, and her body became stiff all over, while she broke out into a cold sweat.
While Feng Ning was immobilized on the ornamental mountain, the combat situation for the Long Family guards wasn’t looking good, and when Feng Ning heard the sound of blades clashing and the screams of people dying, she was super worried for everyone in her heart.
She clenched her teeth, and tried her best to encourage herself: “it’s alright, the fight won’t be on the lake, I won’t fall in……”
At this moment, a masked assassin shouted: “the door’s open, let’s go inside.” That voice gave Feng Ning a jolt, it sounded similar to the man that wanted to kill her before.
Feng Ning clenched her fists, and rushed towards the study, while averting her gaze from the lake on purpose, and thought to herself in her heart: “Long San, please protect me.”
Of course, Long San wasn’t going to reply here, but Feng Ning had already arrived at the study, where the guards and the assassins were engaged in fierce combat, Feng Ning ignored all of them, and rushed inside the wide open door.
The study was very large, and there were several rows of large bookshelves, and two tables, but nobody was on the first floor, Feng Ning kept her guard up, and carefully jumped up the stairs, three men in black were searching a wall on the second floor, several secret weapons shot out from the wall, and they were able to dodge them.
The voice that Feng Ning recognized said: “it should be in here.” The other two people nodded, and began searching for hidden mechanisms on the wall again. Feng Ning didn’t make any sounds, and went directly for the person that was talking, that person suddenly detected an ambush behind him, and barely escaped the attack by rolling away on the ground, another person pulled his sword out and blocked Feng Ning’s attack.
Without saying a thing, Feng Ning attacked twice more in quick succession, and began fighting with that person. When the third person was about to come help his comrade, the first person that dodged the ambush said instead: “don’t bother with her, finding that item is more important.”
Feng Ning cautiously raised her guard inside her, this person fighting with her is stronger in martial arts than the assassins’ leader responsible for attacking the servants’ quarters, it seems that none of these three will be easy to take down, but she definitely won’t allow any of them to take anything at all away from the Long Family. Feng Ning fought recklessly without abandon, while the other person got scared, while neither of them was weak in martial arts, when one person is trying to protect his life while the other is attacking without care for hers, the advantage is obvious.
Feng Ning’s blade was able to slice and injure his waist, then with a flick of her wrist, the next blade sliced towards his shoulder, and the other person was already losing badly, and could only roll away on the ground, at seeing the situation another man in black hurriedly intercepted Feng Ning with a horizontal blade in order to block Feng Ning’s attacks. Feng Ning didn’t slow down her attacks at all, and kept up a relentless series of attacks with some powerful blade techniques.
At this moment, a Long Family guard arrived, and upon seeing the situation he attacked the man in black that was trying to open up the wall mechanism, but the person that Feng Ning injured earlier suddenly shouted, and jumped the guard. While the two of them fought for a few rounds, there was a “clang!” and the wall mechanism opened up, while the man in black reached inside looking for something. Feng Ning’s heart was as if it was on fire, and she took as large a step as she could, ignoring the opponent in front of her, in order to attack and force away the person rummaging through the mechanism.
That person dodged the attack, while the man in black behind Feng Ning had arrived with his attack as well, since Feng Ning was forced to defend against his attack, she pivoted on her foot and jumped to dodge his attack, but in the time that it took, the person that was rummaging earlier had already reached inside again and taken out a small container, he opened it up and took a look within, and shouted: “this is it, we’ve got it, leave now.”
Feng Ning became even more anxious, and shouted: “nobody is leaving.” She ignored the sword that was right before her, and leaned her body, allowing the sword to pass dangerously close by, and with one step she arrived in front of the person that had stolen the item, and she lifted her blade and sliced, in an attempt to recover that small container.
At this moment, the Long Family guard that had been battling a man in black kicked away his opponent, and attacked the assassin holding the small container, since the assassin was facing enemies from both sides, he was forced to use his sword to block the guard’s attack while kicking towards Feng Ning. The other man in black raised his sword and attacked Feng Ning, Feng Ning ducked, and doing a handstand with a single palm on the ground, dodged that sword’s attack, and kicked the wrist of the person holding the container with the momentum from righting her body. The container flew up into the air, and with another kick that successfully landed against the man in black’s waist, making use of the recoil, she barely managed to glide over and catch the container.
Her series of movements were so ingenious, that everyone else paused in surprise for a moment, and the container had already landed in Feng Ning’s hands. The man in black whose voice Feng Ning recognized suddenly shouted: “you’re trying your utmost hardest to the point of risking your life for them? You think you’re really Long San’s wife?”
Feng Ning was confused for an instant, and didn’t understand what he meant, but she definitely confirmed that she recognized his voice: “it is you.” This response shocked the Long Family guard: “you know each other?” Just as he finished speaking, the man in black made a gesture, and all three assassins attacked him, and the guard raised his sword in surprise to defend himself, Feng Ning was still a ways off from him, she wasn’t in time to help him, and that guard wasn’t able to block three people’s attacks, under their combined attacks, one of them was able to kick him off the second floor onto the first floor.
At seeing the situation, Feng Ning rushed to the window, and was about to jump down the window to meet up with the other guards, since she has the Long Family item, the best case scenario is to defend it with everyone together.
But, the moment the window opened, two secret weapons shot in with a whistling sound, Feng Ning barely dodged one of them, but the other scraped her shoulder, causing a burning sensation, she bore the pain the best she could, and collapsed by the window, since the moonlight visible from the window was beautifully reflecting off the lake, Feng Ning wasn’t able to bear it anymore, and with an “Ah!” scream, she finally collapsed on the ground.