108 A Lot Alike

Rin couldn't contain her astonishment by Duyi Zhong's bold question.

In love with An Sun?

For a brief moment, she had sat there in silence before a melodious sound escaped her lips.

"I have to say Sir Zhong, your imagination sure is interesting," She laughed softly, her cheeks rosy.

Duyi Zhong's brows furrowed tightly together. "Maybe so, but I have every right to ask such a question. You and that young man seem pretty close from what I've seen."

Rin coughed and smiled awkwardly. "It seems that Sir Zhong has forgotten, but to Lord An, I'm a man."

Duyi Zhong's brows raised as he looked at Rin's body up and down.

True to her words, she indeed looks like a young, frail man. Had he not know her true gender he too would have thought of her as a man.

Her face, which still had not shown full maturity was rather delicate and youthful looking, making one think she was a frail boy still developing.

Pale, milky skin, thick, sharp eyebrows, and a small, narrow nose - the bridge of it straight.

Truthfully, her looks were rather average compared to most beauties but she bore something most young misses didn't possess: her eyes. Sharp, icy emerald eyes that were deep and chilling.

Duyi Zhong could see why his old friend Bai Lan scared off so many suitors, including canceling the marriage between her and the Northern Empire's Crown Prince.

Such a rare beauty was not meant to be soiled by lustful men, but to be cherished and nurtured like a precious flower.

He sighed inwardly, thinking of the turmoil the old man must be in knowing his beloved granddaughter was in the hands of a ruthless army.

Drinking the last bit of his tea, Duyi Zhong gets up from his seat and smiles kindly down at Rin.

"It's about time you returned, wouldn't want to worry Commander An too much."

Rin nodded and stood up to politely bow her head. He chuckled at her courteous actions but said nothing of it.

"Ah, that reminds me," The old man's eyes suddenly brightened. "There's a cave with a hot spring a few miles from your camp in the mountains. You'll notice an old plum blossom tree in the front. Whenever you get the chance, you can visit it and relax there sometime. I'm sure your muscles must be stiff and sore from everything. And don't worry, no one knows about it besides myself and a few trusted soldiers."

Rin smiled, "Thank you, I'll be sure to visit when I have the time."

After leaving Duyi Zhong's office, Rin headed back to the camp and toward her tent.

She felt there was no need for her to go to An Sun's tent. She didn't do anything wrong nor go against An Sun's trust so she saw no reason to reassure the cold man.

Moreover, she was too tired and felt the need to eat a quick meal then sleep.

Unknown to Rin, her movements from the beginning were seen by a Tuhan soldier who hastily walked toward An Sun's tent once Rin's figure was out of sight.

"He came back and went to his tent?"

The soldier nodded his head, "Yes."

An Sun immediately frowned. Propping his chin on his palm, he dismisses the soldier and stares blankly at the brazier in the corner of the tent.

"Sun…" Manchu's low voice spoke, his expression furrowed.

"He's not an idiot," An Sun sighed and stood up from his seat to head out the tent. "To betray me in front of my own eyes would be a foolish move."

"Even so that could be exactly..." Manchu stopped after receiving An Sun's icy glare.

He was aware of the boy's suspicious behavior, but oddly enough he didn't see him as a threat. It was obvious he had his own motives for staying. And killing him and his army wasn't one of them.

When met with the boy's clear, resolute eyes he couldn't see a trace of malicious intent. He meant the words he said and worked hard to prove his worth.

Through the past couple of weeks, An Sun observed his progress as he trained, studied and strategized – all ways to please him.

Most who had tried to gain his trust would sing praises his way or act nothing but obedient. Those who did were now dead.

But the boy didn't. He voiced opinions he knew would anger or irritate him and didn't bother to reassure or praise him when unnecessary. He took risks no other dared to take, and he admired it.

An Sun felt a swell of dissatisfaction at the thought of him ever betraying him, his gray eyes turning cold.

Lifting the tent's flap, a gust of cold wind blows through the tent, fluttering the man's long black hair.

Turning to the side to glance at the frowning Manchu, An Sun smirked coldly. "If you took the time to stop being so cautious for once, you'd find you two have a lot in common."

It kind of pissed him off, An Sun inwardly thought as he walked away.

Manchu's eyebrows raised as he watched An Sun's departing figure.

Them alike? In what way were they the same?

A rare sense of irritation swelled his heart. Scratching the back of his head, Manchu stands up and grabs his bow to hunt off his frustrations.
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