181 Chapter 181 Aunt Gu Lian
Qiangdu CountryIn a wide cave, a grotesque swamp lies at the center. Living poisonous insects and animals are wrestling against each other. In the middle of a swamp is a platform made of stone. A beautiful woman sat crossed legged with her back straight and has a serene look, looking like a sleeping fairy.On the side, Gu clan's head Gu Lingdao fought the urge to close his eyes to rest. But he still needed to guard the princess in her cultivation. So he still couldn't sleep. After almost a year on this task, he can't just back down on this responsibility half way just because he is tired. It is a matter of life and death for Lin Xulian after all.Before, he still had Gu Rin to share the responsibility and guard Lin Xulian whenever he felt tired. Aside from guarding, they also have to supplement her with internal energy since she can't eat or drink. But weeks ago, they received the news that the Liu clan are wreaking havoc in Gonglu country, their princess' birth country. And when they heard that the one leading them is Liu Yeyin, Gu Rin couldn't sit still and volunteered to lead the team to control the situation.Thinking about Liu Yeyin, Gu Lingdao can't help but feel regret. He can still remember the adorable little girl who would always visit their village and shamelessly introduce herself as Gu Rin's future wife at the age of seven. The little boy Gu Rin at that time would always blush but would not deny her claims.If not because of her elders' greed, those two would have already been married and have a lot of adorable children by now. But receiving the news that Liu Yeyin became evil and wanted to destroy the Qiangdu country by using the other three country's forces, he wondered why she became as such. How did she become so ruthless to use other people's lives for personal gains?For Gu Lingdao, and other Qiangdu country's citizen, the one who started the feud was the Liu clan. So Liu Yeyin have no right to resent them. In fact, she should thank them because their clan wasn't completely annihilated. So he can't comprehend why would Liu Yeyin wanted to go against Qiangdu that much. As for Gu Rin, Gu Lingdao trusts him that he would not hesitate and stop Liu Yeyin despite their past feelings. Gu Lingdao was immersed in nostalgia until he is abruptly alerted by the change of energy fluctuation in the cave. In the platform at the center of the swamp, the energy that can almost be seen with the naked eyes slowly condensed towards the girl sitting crossed legged.Seeing this, clan head Gu Lingdao can tell that after almost a year, Lin Xulian is finally done with the ritual. He heaved a sigh of relief, not only for Lin Xulian, but also for himself. He never thought the ritual would last this long if done by the adult. After all, this never happened before. For newborn children the ritual only lasts for one to three days. So Lin Xulian's ritual tired him out.Gu Lingdao watched in vigilance as the energy around the cave slowly condensed towards Lin Xulian. Then her body glowed with a purple halo until it slowly, like a water on a drain, converge towards her upper right cheek under her eye and formed a mole. Just like the other members of the Gu clan.After some time, Lin Xulian's long curled lashes trembled slightly. Then she slowly and difficultly opened her eyes. It took her some time to adjust to the light around her, even though it was already considered dim, since she had her eyes closed for a very long time.Fully opening her eyes, Lin Xulian fell into a trance seemingly trying to absorb her current situation. Gu Lingdao anxiously watched her and cold sweat drenched his back seeing the empty look in their Princess eyes. He knew that the ritual might cause a mental and emotional damage on her. However, Lin Xulian was adamant and determined, so he bit the bullet and complied.Regaining her focus, Lin Xulian casually scanned the cave, the grotesque swamp, then her eyes landed on the middle-aged looking man with an anxious expression. She deeply looked at him until her eyes showed a glimmer of recognition. Gu Lingdao also noticed the change in her eyes so he finally let out the breath that he unconsciously held.Lin Xulian slowly moved her limbs and repeatedly massaged and stretch them to regulate her blood circulation. Then with a slight tap of her feet, she flew from the platform towards Gu Lingdao using qigong. She was surprise to discover how light her body feels. But remembered the cultivation she undergone taught by her great granduncle, the King."Welcome back, Princess Xulian. And congratulations for successfully overcoming the ritual." Gu Lingdao said with a bow. His voice is filled with relief and genuine happiness.Lin Xulian is about to return his greetings. But the moment she opened her mouth, she winced in pain. She then realized that her lips are dry and chapped. The slight movement caused a tear in her lips and bled a little. Her throat is also very dry that she can't even produce a low sound.Realizing her discomfort, Gu Lingdao took out the gourd filled with water and respectfully passed it to Lin Xulian with both hands. Lin Xulian accepted the gourd and slowly drank the refreshing liquid one sip at a time until she could finally get her voice back."Many thanks, clan head Gu for your care. How long was I out?" Lin Xulian inquired with her hoarse voice."About two weeks more before it would be exactly one year, Princess." Gu Lingdao replied truthfully.Lin Xulian, still taking few more sips of water, choked and cough violently hearing Gu Lingdao's response. "*cough *cough W-what?! A year?! It only felt like few days! You're not pranking me now, are you, benevolent clan head?" She exclaimed in disbelief."This one wouldn't dare prank you, Princess." Gu Lingdao confirmed seriously. Seeing this, Lin Xulian can only accept and believe him.Finally accepting that a year already passed, Lin Xulian voiced out her worries. "A year is a long time. I suppose many things happened?""Those who were needed to die were already reduced to ashes. Those you wanted alive are still running about but are monitored closely." Gu Lingdao answered vaguely. But Lin Xulian can understand clearly. It means the biggest preys are still out there waiting for her to hunt them down."I understand." Lin Xulian solemnly replied. Thinking about the Xing siblings, particularly Xing Baihe, Lin Xulian's countenance turned cold. A year had passed, but for her, her grievances are as fresh as yesterday.Gu Lingdao then took out a purple jade token out from his sleeve and presented it to Lin Xulian. "Princess, this is for you."Lin Xulian took the token. She recognized it as the identity token similar to what Xing Guang gave her in order to enter the Qiangdu country. But what surprised her is the word engraved on the back of the token. It reads "Lian". "This… is this my identity token? But I'm not a Gu. Is this allowed?""Princess already passed the ritual and was chosen by a royal Gu. It means you are already a part of the clan with the name Gu Lian. I am just pondering whether I should register you as my goddaughter or god granddaughter. That is if you are willing." Gu Lingdao said with a smile.Lin Xulian raise her eyebrows at Gu Lingdao, thinking, 'You already made a token in my name. Yet you are still asking for my opinion? Obviously, I have no choice.'. But Lin Xulian realized that it wasn't a bad idea."I prefer being clan head Gu's goddaughter. I'd like to see Xing Guang's look while calling me aunt." Lin Xulian said with mirth in her eyes. Thinking about that mature and ethereal handsome man calling her, an almost a decade younger woman, his aunt, she can't help but stifle a laugh.Gu Lingdao can only shake his head helplessly. This princess's mind really works unconventionally. But he likes her this way.