Chapter 101: It’s Your Loss, No Thanks!

Demoness's Art of Vengeance

Jun Xiaomo drew a deep breath, and then breathed out slowly.

She glared directly at the second prince as she forcibly plastered a smile on her face and gritted her teeth as she queried, “Second prince, what’s the meaning of this? Are you also interested in obtaining this talisman brush?”

Jun Xiaomo didn’t actually think that the second prince would take any form of interest in this talisman brush. After all, if he were truly interested in making talismans to begin with, the high officials within Inferno Kingdom would hardly hesitate to present him with talisman brushes of higher quality and grades in order to curry favour with him. Therefore, what could the second prince possibly want with a sixth-grade talisman brush?

The second prince continued to fan himself as he explained, “I noticed that Little Mo had taken a liking to this talisman brush, so I took it upon myself to buy it as a gift for Little Mo.” As he said that, he fluttered his eyes at Jun Xiaomo in a suggestive fashion.

Clearly peeved, Jun Xiaomo responded sharply with an annoyed tone of voice, “Since brother Ye has already decided to purchase it for me, why did second prince have to double the price?”

“The meaning attached to the brush won’t be the same. After all, the persons giving this gift are different.” The second prince explicated in a profound fashion, “And besides, the highest bidder always wins at an auction. If two people have set their eyes on the same object, that object naturally belongs to the one with the deeper pockets, wouldn’t you say so, brother Ye?”

The “object” mentioned by the second prince did not merely refer to the Seven Aperture Talisman Brush – it included Yao Mo as well.

In the eyes of the second prince, there were few people out there who could resist the temptation of money and wealth. Because of this, the second prince thought to flaunt his wealth and crush his competition, Ye Xiuwen. He did not believe that Yao Mo’s heart would not be moved by his present actions.

The second prince had often acted in the same manner in Jun Xiaomo’s previous life. Whenever a beauty caught his eye – even if that beauty already had a suitor or lover – the second prince would employ all sorts of methods to strong-arm his competition and capture the heart of that beauty.

He thoroughly enjoyed the process of winning over his targets. In fact, he found things simply too plain without any competition.

Jun Xiaomo was so fuming mad from the second prince’s response that she did not notice the double entendre in the second prince’s words. However, Ye Xiuwen picked up on it.

Ye Xiuwen closed his eyes and lifted his head. Then, he looked towards the auctioneer as he plainly announced, “Eighty superior-grade spirit stones.”

The auctioneer’s eyes immediately brightened as he grew more spirited. He would never have expected to encounter such distinguished patricians on the third day of the auctions. He immediately raised his voice and echoed, “Seven Aperture Talisman Brush, eighty superior-grade spirit stones. Does anyone else have a bid?”

“One hundred superior-grade spirit stones.” The second prince continued to fan himself as he leisurely announced his bid.

“One hundred superior-grade spirit stones! The price of this Seven Aperture Talisman Brush has now grown to one hundred superior-grade spirit stones! Does anyone else have a bid?” The auctioneer’s voice quivered in excitement.

The entire audience was now set ablaze with an uproarious commotion. One hundred superior-grade spirit stone for this measly sixth-grade Seven Aperture Talisman Brush – was this necessary?! The bidding price had already far exceeded the objective value of this object.

“One hundred and ten superior-grade spirit stones.” Ye Xiuwen continued.

“One hundred and ten! One hundred and ten superior-grade spirit stones! Anybody else?”

“One hundred and sixty superior-grade spirit stones.” The second prince increased the price by fifty superior-grade spirit stones in just one breath. As he announced his bid, he even grinned impishly as he cast a derisory look over at Ye Xiuwen.

The second prince’s grand eunuch stood diagonally behind him and gulped anxiously. He had wanted to say something to the second prince, but then he hesitated and caught himself.

He wanted to tell the second prince that with one hundred and sixty superior-grade spirit stones, one could already buy a mid-tier eighth-grade talisman brush! Spending the same amount of money on a mere sixth-grade upper-tier talisman brush was a lavish waste of money!

But he caught himself. He knew his place – he was no more than a eunuch to the second prince. It was unlikely that the second prince would change his mind, no matter what he said. In fact, speaking out right now might only serve to draw the second prince’s ire upon himself.

Sigh. Forget it. I’ll keep observing on the sidelines and see how things pan out.

Ye Xiuwen knew that there was no meaning contending with the second prince. He knew that the second prince was maliciously driving prices up, and no matter what price he bid, the second prince was going to one-up him by calling out a bid that was at least ten superior-grade spirit stones higher than his. In fact, Ye Xiuwen was almost certain that the second prince were going to keep this up until Ye Xiuwen was unable to fork out any more spirit stones from his Interspatial Ring.

What the second prince was doing right now was clearly flaunting his wealth. He was the crown prince of the Inferno Kingdom and its future king. Therefore, he was hardly concerned about the little amount of spirit stones that he was bidding with right now.

Just as Ye Xiuwen was thinking up an appropriate countermeasure, Jun Xiaomo leaned slightly over towards him and whispered in a discreet, soft voice that could only be heard by the two of them, “Brother Ye, I don’t want that talisman brush. Let the second prince have it.”

Ye Xiuwen softly patted Jun Xiaomo’s head. Yao Mo’s consideration towards him left him with a sour feeling and some measure of exasperation in his heart.

The aching feeling in his heart came from Yao Mo’s sensibility; while his exasperation laid with the fact that he did not possess sufficient spirit stones in his Interspatial Ring to duke it out with the crown prince of the Inferno Kingdom.

At the same time, Jun Xiaomo could sense the displeasure within Ye Xiuwen’s heart. She knew that Ye Xiuwen were still deeply affected by this incident.

Therefore, she blinked twice and mouthed the following words to Ye Xiuwen – I have a better talisman brush in my Interspatial Ring. Don’t worry.

Then, Jun Xiaomo silently added in her heart – Besides, I don’t want it if it’s not given by martial brother Ye!

This talisman brush possessed sentimental value precisely because it reminded her about the memories of her past interactions with Ye Xiuwen. Therefore, what was the point if Ye Xiuwen were not the one giving her the brush? The brush’s sentimental value would certainly be substantially diminished, if not rendered entirely obsolete!

However, Jun Xiaomo wasn’t prepared to express these words verbally, and she could only silently think about these matters.

Ye Xiuwen’s observational skills were amazing. Even though Jun Xiaomo had not expressed her feelings in words, he could see that Jun Xiaomo absolutely did not want to owe the second prince any favours.

After all, it was easy to get into a debt of gratitude, but it was much harder to pay it off. Once Jun Xiaomo accepts the second prince’s gift of the talisman brush to her, it was not going to be easy for her to set things straight with the second prince in future.

Besides, the second prince was obviously inflating prices with a malicious intent just so that he could stave off Ye Xiuwen’s bids. Otherwise, a mere sixth-grade Seven Aperture Talisman Brush could easily be bought for less than one hundred superior-grade spirit stones.

Having understood Jun Xiaomo’s intentions, Ye Xiuwen wrote in the palm of Jun Xiaomo’s hands the following words – I’ll buy a better one for you next time.

Jun Xiaomo smiled at Ye Xiuwen, and her heart was now completely devoid of any disappointment.

Even so, Ye Xiuwen were still dissatisfied with the fact that the second prince had botched his attempt to purchase the talisman brush. Therefore, Ye Xiuwen resolved in his heart that he was going trip up the second prince and let him have a little taste of his own medicine.

Since the communication between Ye Xiuwen and Jun Xiaomo took a little while, the auctioneer had already started to count down. Nevertheless, Ye Xiuwen lifted his head once more and coolly called out, “One hundred and seventy superior-grade spirit stones.”

As soon as he finished speaking, the second prince immediately called out, “Two hundred superior-grade spirit stones.”

The second prince’s extravagance caused the entire crowd to turn around and stare at him with open jaws in astonishment. Within moments, the entire crowd was filled with chatter as people speculated the second prince’s identity. Naturally, there were also some individuals in the crowd who managed to remain composed because they had recognized the second prince’s identity or the fact that he was a member of the Inferno Kingdom’s royalty.

After all, this wasn’t the first time that the second prince had splurged with extravagance in order to win over the affection of his targets. Therefore, the people who managed to recognize the second prince’s identity continued to crane their necks as they attempted to spot which beauty it was that the second prince had set his eyes upon this time.

However, the disturbance and uproar in the crowd did not affect Jun Xiaomo and the rest. In fact, the Dawn Sect disciples had already become aware of the fact that the second prince and Ye Xiuwen were now locked in a bidding war. Therefore, they all continued to observe the two protagonists of this war keenly. On the other hand, Yu Wanrou looked helplessly at Yao Mo with a gaze filled with admiration – evidently, she desired to be in his shoes right now.

Jun Xiaomo was flabbergasted as she turned around and stared at Ye Xiuwen – didn’t I say I didn’t want the talisman brush anymore? Why did you start bidding again?!

Ye Xiuwen patted Jun Xiaomo’s head, but he did not explain his actions. Instead, he continued to bid, “Two hundred and ten superior-grade spirit stones.”

“Two hundred and fifty superior-grade spirit stones.” The second prince leisurely fanned himself as he continued to delight himself in the limelight created by the countless looks of admiration and adoration.

These looks of admiration naturally came from the male cultivators; while the looks of adoration naturally came from the female cultivators. Several female cultivators even fantasized about having the fortune of being fawned over by the second prince.

Ye Xiuwen calmly increased his bid again, “Two hundred and eighty superior-grade spirit stones.”

The second prince flicked shut his fan as he glared over at Ye Xiuwen with increasing displeasure, “Three hundred superior-grade spirit stones!”

As soon as the second prince shouted out his last bid, the entire audience was immediately filled with a deafening silence, as though someone had applied a Noise-Cancelling Talisman on every single person present at the same time.

The auctioneer’s hand quivered in excitement as he looked at the second prince with incredulity. It had to be said that items to be auctioneered tomorrow might not even fetch the juicy price of three hundred superior-grade spirit stones. Furthermore, the auctioneer would take a cut of the auctioned price as his commission.

In other words, he stood to gain thirty superior-grade spirit stones through this single transaction of the Seven Aperture Talisman Brush. To put this into perspective, this amount was something that far exceeded what he would have earned after one regular day of auctioneering.

The auctioneer truly thanked his lucky stars for encountering these two patricians who engaged in a bidding war at this moment.

The second prince smirked as he glanced over at Ye Xiuwen with a mocking gaze once again. He knew that Ye Xiuwen could not match up to his level of wealth. Even if Ye Xiuwen had continued to increase his bid, Ye Xiuwen could never fork out as much money as the second prince could.

As expected, Ye Xiuwen remained silent and stopped bidding any further. Accordingly, the second prince successfully purchased this Seven Aperture Talisman Brush for the price of three hundred superior-grade spirit stones.

“Eunuch De, go settle the accounts.” The second prince turned around and instructed Eunuch De.

“Yes, this humble servant shall do so.” With a bitter expression, Eunuch De counted out three hundred superior-grade spirit stones from his Interspatial Ring and handed them over to the auctioneer.

The auctioneer received this with a glint in his eyes, before promptly handing over the Seven Aperture Talisman Brush to Eunuch De.

When Eunuch De returned to the second prince, he immediately presented the second prince with the Seven Aperture Talisman Brush. As the second prince received the brush, his face was plastered with a proud and pleased expression.

At this moment, Eunuch De felt so anguished by the second prince’s actions that he wanted to rub his aching temples – Master, you’ve basically purchased this talisman brush at a price that is several times of its fair value. What do you have to be pleased about?

It had to be known that three hundred superior-grade spirit stones were more than sufficient to cover the expenses of any ordinary family for several years!

Well, master is the Inferno Kingdom’s future king after all. Having grown up in the palace, he naturally doesn’t understand the hardship experienced by the common folk. Sigh.

Eunuch De complained in his heart, but he kept his thoughts to himself as he continued to stand deferentially behind the second prince.

The second prince beamed in delight as he turned towards Yao Mo and presented the talisman brush to him as he proclaimed victoriously, “I’ve said it before, brother Yao can let me know if he sees anything he fancies. I will definitely buy it for you.”

Jun Xiaomo raised her eyebrows as she looked back at the second prince. She found that nauseating smile plastered all over his face especially vulgar and garish.

Despite that, she chuckled lightly, and then displayed an unconstrained attitude as she responded, “I thank the second prince’s good intentions, and I’ve taken it to heart. However, I really don’t need this talisman brush. I humbly ask the second prince to keep it for now and give it to someone who might need it more later.”

The second prince’s smile immediately froze in place. He squinted his eyes as he queried, “Brother Yao loves to joke. Wasn’t brother Ye bidding for this brush on your behalf earlier?”

Jun Xiaomo gnashed her teeth discreetly as she muttered in her heart – Why did you meddle in our affairs if you knew that martial brother Ye was buying it for me?!

It was when the second prince managed to secure his bid on the talisman brush that Jun Xiaomo finally picked up on Ye Xiuwen’s intentions for increasing his bids. Ye Xiuwen had used the second prince’s malicious intentions against himself and dug a pit that the second prince had fallen into. Right now, Jun Xiaomo was only lending her martial brother a hand to aggravate the second prince.

Therefore, she hooked her lips into a smile as she leisurely responded, “That’s right. But later on in the bidding, I suddenly realized that I possess an even better talisman brush, so I decided that I don’t need this brush anymore.”

The second prince: ……

At this moment, Jun Xiaomo retrieved from her Interspatial Ring the talisman brush that she had habitually used. This brush was a low-tier seventh-grade brush. Even though it could hardly hold a candle to the brushes she had used in her previous life, it was nevertheless better than the Seven Aperture Talisman Brush held in the second prince’s hand right now.

“Therefore, martial brother wasn’t bidding on my behalf towards the latter half of things.”

He was only raising prices to aggravate you! Since you like to flaunt your wealth so much, then you can thoroughly enjoy this brush which you have just splurged on!

This last statement was something that Jun Xiaomo had only added in her heart and not made explicit. However, the second prince was not a daft person. How could he not understand the implications of Jun Xiaomo’s earlier words?

Jun Xiaomo clearly meant that she no longer had the intentions to possess this talisman brush midway through the bidding, and Ye Xiuwen was well aware of this fact. Therefore, the only reason Ye Xiuwen had continued to bid was because Ye Xiuwen knew that the second prince intended to outbid him to the end, and he merely wished to make the second prince fork out more spirit stones at the auctions.

Ye Xiuwen was adept at making use of circumstances to his own benefits like that. After all, he had not done too much, but he was nevertheless able to seriously trip up the second prince and make him spend three hundred superior-grade spirit stones to purchase that worthless talisman brush.

Seeing that his plan had completely backfired, the second prince was absolute furious. His lips twitched uncontrollably, and he almost failed to maintain his usual appearance replete with that charming and suave smile.

On the other side, the disciples from Dawn Sect were all trying to stifle their laughter as well. They could not help it. The second prince’s extravagant methods had not only attracted looks of admiration from them, it also incited feelings of jealousy and even hatred. Now that the second prince had dropped the rock on his own foot, how could they not feel secretly pleased at the situation? Therefore, they tried their very best to keep their laughter in at this moment.

This was the first time that the second prince had been made into a laughingstock, and he felt incredibly frustrated!

He coldly chuckled as he remarked, “Brother Ye is truly good with his schemes.”

Yet Ye Xiuwen calmly rebuffed him with a curt response, “You’re not too shabby either.”

If not for the fact that the second prince had raised the prices maliciously; if not for the fact that the second prince interjected in their affairs and pitted himself against Ye Xiuwen, Ye Xiuwen would not have considered retaliating at all.

The second prince snickered coldly, before handing the talisman brush back to Eunuch De as he instructed, “Keep it, and give it to whoever wants it.”

“Yes.” Eunuch De carefully stashed the pen and remained taciturn. He did not want to incur the wrath of his master right now.

In the time that followed, the second prince no longer teased Jun Xiaomo with his words. It was as though he had completely lost interest in Yao Mo.

Jun Xiaomo secretly gave Ye Xiuwen a thumbs up as she smiled discreetly at him.

Ye Xiuwen patted Jun Xiaomo’s head, and they were once again enshrouded with an intimate atmosphere that left no room for a third party.

However, what they did not notice was how the second prince had glanced over at them at this moment, and a soulless gleam flickered across his eyes before it vanished.

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