The Duskwater prefect’s manor was located in Duskwater City as well. It was grander than the city lord’s manor, and both were a cut above the provincial governor’s residence.
In Lu Yun’s eyes, the only thing special about the city lord’s manor was its feng shui, which imparted a faint aura of nobility. The prefect’s manor, on the other hand, also had an above average feng shui layout. However, it was the overly grandiose architecture that made it resemble a palace more than an official’s residence.
“Aiyaya, I’ve waited and pined for so long. My dearest Mo Yi is finally here! Do come on in, let’s have a nice chat. Hm? Who is this male escort?” A mountain of flesh welcomed them as soon as they reached the front doors.
Lu Yun gaped at the ridiculously large man. It was no exaggeration to describe him as a walking mountain of human… something.
Eight feet both in height and width, the man presented quite a comical sight. He looked to weigh at least four hundred kilograms. A face like a large, round rubber ball sported features so shallow they looked like they were drawn on. His eyes, especially, were such a thin slit that one had to peer closely to spot them.
“This, this is Prefect Li Youcai of Duskwater Prefecture?” Lu Yun asked dumbly once he’d finally broken out of his thoughts.
Resigned, Mo Yi nodded slightly when she saw the governor’s expression.
“Who do you think you are, lover boy?” the mountain of a man barked out furiously. “How dare you address me directly?”
“You’d better shut your damn mouth if you value your life, Li Youcai.” Mo Yi huffed, but deliberately refrained from informing the man of Lu Yun’s identity.
“Hey! I’ve betrothed you to the Skyriver city lord, Little Mo Yi. It’s unvirtuous of you to cheat on your betrothed.” The fat on Li Youcai’s face jiggled as he talked.
Mo Yi’s expression tightened.
“You betrothed Mo Yi to the Skyriver City Lord?” Lu Yun widened his eyes. “Who gave you the authority to do so?”
“Who? His Majesty the Celestial Emperor, of course!” Li Youcai didn’t even hesitate. “As the prefect of the prefecture, I am both entitled and obligated to arrange marriages for my subordinates.”
“Oh?” Lu Yun swallowed a laugh. “In that case, I betroth that sow to you, Li Youcai. You should host the wedding as soon as possible.” He pointed at a herd of pigs rounding the corner of the street.
Mo Yi’s eyes widened, her dark expression replaced by a wide smile.
“Bastard!” Li Youcai trembled with fury. “You’re mocking me! Don’t think I won’t do anything to you just because you have the city lord on your side. Guards, arrest this insubordinate brat!”
“Yes, sir!” The guards had been itching for some action.
“Hold!” Mo Yi realized what Lu Yun was planning and only made a half-hearted attempt to stop Li Youcai’s orders.
“What? Trying to save your lover boy? It’s high treason to challenge one’s superior! Even as the city lord, you can’t excuse his behavior.” Pleased, Li Youcai tried to put his hands behind his back, but his waist was too wide and his arms too short to manage the feat. “Take him!” he ordered with a self-righteous scowl.
Mo Yi snorted without a word. Challenge one’s superior? The fellow just wanted an excuse to arrest Lu Yun. She backed down only because he held more power than she did.
“You sure are bold, Li Youcai, Prefect of Duskwater.” Lu Yun held up a shiny command token—the token used to summon the Dusk Phalanx. At the same time, it also signified his identity as the Dusk Province governor. “How dare a mere prefect arrest the governor of the province? This is treason!”
The mountain of flesh froze. He tried his best to open his eyes, but they remained two thin lines. “Wh-who are you?!” Li Youcai shuddered. He had a bad feeling about this.
“I’m holding the command token of the Dusk Phalanx. Who else do you think this governor is? The Dusk River Sacrament is upon us. Naturally, I’ve come to oversee the ritual.” Lu Yun raised the token in one hand and put his other hand behind his back.
Li Youcai pointed a trembling finger at Mo Yi. “You—you set me up!”
“I did no such thing.” The city lord smirked. “Didn’t I tell you to stop? You just didn’t listen.”
“It’s high treason to challenge one’s superior.” Lu Yun brandished the token in his hand. “You were obviously up to no good when you ordered my arrest. Guards, arrest Li Youcai and strip him of his title. The Duskwater city lord will be the acting prefect for the moment.”
He shook his head. “In addition, that sow there looks like a fine beauty. A match made in heaven with Li Youcai, so to speak. I hereby betroth her to our former prefect. The wedding will be held without delay.”
There were still mortals in the city. A swineherd just so happened to be herding his pigs past the prefect’s manor at that moment, and was giving it a wide berth out of fear. He had his back pressed flat against the other side of the road as he carefully made his way past.
Lu Yun was pointing at one of his pigs.
“That’s a male pig, Your Excellency,” Mo Yi spoke up, biting back a smile. She didn’t expect Lu Yun to set up such a humiliation for Li Youcai. As the governor, he did have the power to depose an officer of the province. Betrothing a pig to Li Youcai was just pure revenge on her behalf.
“A boar?” A brief pause later, Lu Yun continued with feigned seriousness, “Even better. A male pig suits Sir Li Youcai more. You there, I’ll give you an inferior rank spirit stone as the bride price, and I’ll play matchmaker for the former prefect.”
The swineherd was only an ordinary person, and couldn’t help but violently shudder when he heard Lu Yun’s words. He could sense Li Youcai’s murderous gaze settling on him, even with how small the prefect’s eyes were.
“Please have mercy, milord! I don’t want to die yet!” He was on the verge of tears.
“Leave the pig and get out of here,” Mo Yi huffed at his fearful face. Relieved, the man abandoned his entire passel of pigs and bolted.
When the gods fought, mortals suffered. If the man had accepted Lu Yun’s spirit stone, the prefect would’ve decimated him later. The city lord’s dismissal had saved him from Li Youcai’s revenge.
“So you’re Lu Yun!” Li Youcai bit out, his chest heaving. “You’re really stripping me of my position?”
“He doesn’t have the right to do so.” A faint voice traveled in from the front gate, followed by a young man in black with some servants by his side. His features were fine, but his skin was dark and covered in thick, ugly scars. It looked like centipedes were crawling all over his face.
“There’s only half a year left in your term, Your Excellency. You have no authority to remove any officials in Dusk Province during this period,” The young man said, his expression turning to mockery.
Lu Yun frowned. “Is that so?” He looked up. “And who are you? What gives you the right to interfere with the internal affairs of Dusk?”
“I am an envoy of His Majesty the Celestial Emperor. I represent him. That gives me all the right to intervene,” sneered the young man. “I’m also in charge of this year’s Dusk River Sacrament, not you.”
Mo Yi’s face clouded over. She didn’t expect there to be an imperial envoy in her city!
“There’s someone like you in Dusk City as well,” Lu Yun responded after a bemused pause.
“Feng Li?” The young man scoffed. “That useless piece of trash was sent by the crown prince. He isn’t His Majesty’s envoy. I, on the other hand, have an imperial decree, making me a true envoy.”
“Alright then.” Lu Yun nodded. “So I can’t strip Li Youcai of his title, but I at least have the right to betroth the boar to him, don’t I?”
“You’re marrying off a male pig to him?” The envoy’s wide eyes fixed Lu Yun with a look of disbelief.
“Li Youcai wishes to betroth the Duskwater city lord to the Skyriver city lord. Since this is the case, I’ll marry off the pig to him. I do have that authority, don’t I?” Lu Yun said easily. “If I can’t even do that...”
He thought for a good while, then continued seriously, “Then I’ll summon all one million heavenly soldiers from the northern territory. If anyone has any objections, we shall all perish together.” 
The command token in his hand glowed with a faint golden light.
“You’re as mad as the others in your clan.” The young man looked intrigued. “Well then, I’ll stay out of this. However, I expect a seat at the wedding.” Amused, he didn’t take Lu Yun’s threat personally.
“Can’t it be a sow?” Li Youcai pleaded pitifully. “If it’s a female pig, I can at least coach her in cultivation and help her transform into a pretty little spirit.”
“No!” Lu Yun, Mo Yi, and the young man denied in unison. Despair flashed across Li Youcai’s expression.
“Only the Duskwater city lord was invited. The governor’s presence is unexpected.” The young man cleared his throat and changed the subject. “I was the one who sent the invitation.”
“You?” Mo Yi frowned. Someone had wanted to use her hand to kill Lu Yun, and she’d pinned the responsibility on Li Youcai. However, that didn’t seem to be the case anymore. Otherwise, Li Youcai wouldn’t have failed to recognize the governor and fallen headfirst into his trap.
Was it this envoy’s doing?
“The lords of the seven cities under the prefecture’s jurisdiction have all convened.” Excitement tinged the young man’s face. “Alright, let’s go investigate Myriad Formation Summit.”
“Myriad Formation Summit?” Lu Yun frowned slightly. He’d been discussing the mountain with Mo Yi. What a coincidence that the envoy had the same destination in mind. “Alright,” he agreed before Mo Yi could make up her mind. “This official wouldn’t dare defy His Majesty’s envoy.”
The young man paused. “You’re going as well?”
“If anything happens, I’ll summon the Dusk Phalanx. I’m sure a million soldiers will be able to eliminate any threats.” Lu Yun responded matter-of-factly. “I’m interested in the treasures there, too.”
“So be it, then.” The young man hunched in on himself.
1. Lol wtf. WTF. Was the pig not ridiculous enough??