Who would have thought that just as he turned his head, something very warm was stuffed in his hand.
Lou Muge looked down in puzzlement and saw a folding fan in his hand.
It was white as bones and tender and smooth as jade.

        The fan emitted heat, and in a moment, it gathered around Lou Muge, brutally expelling all the chill and making him feel more comfortable than ever.

        “What’s this for?” Lou Muge asked uncertainly.

        “It can expel the cold.” The tips of Ning Shaosi’s ear were a little red.
He seemed a little shy to face Lou Muge, so his eyes drifted elsewhere.
“You take it.”

        Lou Muge turned the fan in the palm of his hand with some doubts deep inside.
All weapons, when injected with spiritual power, could achieve the effect of protecting the body by keeping out the cold.
But he couldn’t detect a trace of spiritual power in the one in his hand.
Except for appearing very valuable, it resembled an ordinary fan made of white bones inside and outside.

        The copper bell strung on the handle of the fan was similar to the one tied to the tips of his hair.
When gently shaken, it was also a dumb bell that made no sound.

        Lou Muge didn’t refuse it, either.
For one thing, he himself also liked the fan.
Secondly, the fan’s protection against the cold was indeed powerful.
He just had to carry it, and he could take off several layers of cotton jackets on himself.

        He led Ning Shaosi aside and sat down.
In a short while, two bowls of hot wontons were served.

        Lou Muge stirred it with his chopsticks and found that there were not many wontons in the bowl, at least not enough for him to eat in normal times.

        Luckily, he had just eaten meat pies.
Lou Muge secretly celebrated.

        So on a cold day, the mouthful of fresh and fragrant wonton soup made Lou Muge feel better.
He asked, quite casually, “Madam, what is the origin of the Crouching Dragon[1] Spring around Shan’an City?”

        The old lady sat down at the next table and looked Lou Muge and Ning Shaosi up and down.
Her expression turned solemn and even the way she addressed them changed.
“You are the rumored young Divine Immortals who arrived in Shan’an in the past two days, right?

        Lou Muge nodded: “I already have a general idea about Shan’an City, and I want to go to the Crouching Dragon Spring to see if there are any problems.”

        Ning Shaosi quietly ate his wontons.
He didn’t seem to care much about the matter.
He was elegant and brimming with a scholar’s spirit.

        “Crouching Dragon Spring has been here longer than Shan’an.
When our ancestors found this worldly land and intended to settle down, that spring already existed,” the old lady said, “Legend has it that at the bottom of that spring, there was a big black scaled dragon lying down, hiding inside to cultivate.
Later, the big scaled dragon came out of the spring in order to transform into a dragon.
It summoned wind and called for rain, causing floods.
Nonetheless, the Water Goddess appeared personally and expelled that black scaled dragon and saved our Shan’an.”

        When Ning Shaosi heard that, his hand paused for a moment from scooping wontons, but no emotion could be perceived from his averted eyes.

        Lou Muge noticed his abnormality and guessed that the two of them might have thought of the same thing.

        It was a dragon[2] not a scaled dragon that summoned wind and called for rain.

        He didn’t know if mortals were aware of this matter, or whether summoning wind and calling for rain was merely bits of spin they added to the story.  

        Lou Muge nodded: “It seems that this Water Goddess is really powerful.”

        The old lady folded her hands and replied, full of devotion, “Shan’an people have been grateful to the Water Goddess for generations.”

        “Did this happen 50 years ago?”

        “Yes,” the old woman said, “I was only three years old back then.
My two sisters drowned, but my brother and I were spared.”

        The old lady shifted the topic under discussion and whispered a question, “Little Divine Immortal, is the strange incident in Shan’an also the work of the evil scaled dragon?”

        Lou Muge took two mouthfuls of wontons.
He could not speak, so he only shook his head.
He was about to swallow, but heard Ning Shaosi say, “We do not know the cause yet.
We’re still investigating.”

        He raised his eyes and found that Ning Shaosi’s bowl of wontons had already been finished.
His chopsticks were squarely placed on the side of the bowl, quite meticulously.
He was also looking at the old lady with a warm smile: “But don’t worry, we will solve the root cause of this evil work as soon as possible.”

        The steadiness that settled on him was inexplicably reassuring, but from the outside, he appeared just like a half-grown child.

        The old lady nodded trustingly, and gratitude reverberated in her words: “Thanks a lot, Little Divine Immortals.”

        Lou Muge did not tarry and finished his wontons in two to three bites.
He wiped his mouth with his hands and called Ning Shaosi, “Let’s go.”

        He turned around and walked dashingly, but when Ning Shaosi was leaving, he gently put down a piece of cheap silver on the table, before following him.

        The walk to the Crouching Dragon Spring took an hour.
Lou Muge had the white bone fan, so he no longer felt the cold.
He walked at a leisurely pace and chatted with Ning Shaosi from time to time.

        Thinking of the spicy meat pie that Wen Changchu asked him to pass on to Ning Shaosi in the morning, he asked more than once, “Do you have grudges against Wen Changchu?”

        Ning Shaosi shook his head blankly: “He rarely stays in the Demon Realm.
Some time ago, he also walked with the Zhu Clan of the Old God Realm.
We never crossed paths.”

        “The Zhu Clan of the Old God Realm…” Lou Muge narrowed his eyes, “You mean to say you knew Wen Changchu before?”

        “He is the youngest son of the current Demon King, Wen Qingmian.”

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