The cell now seemed to be more comfortable, with a small table having been brought in along with a few jars of wine. It was not the best wine, diluted with water, though it was enjoyed by commoners. Nobles would never drink such a poor quality wine.
As for the two lifelong friends, what more could they ask for?
It was Huang Taiwu who requested it from the guards, for the many additions to the cell. There was no reason to refuse since they knew that there was little to no chance that Shen Congan would be able to survive after the emperor had been angered to such an extent.
[Let's just let the man enjoy his last moments in a drunken state free from worries.] Were the guards' thoughts.
Huang Taiwu and Shen Congan who had been friends for decades, having seen the political intrigues of the court and the palace, perhaps even playing a part in many of them.
There was no one in the palace that could claim they had a clear conscience, it was simple, those that did would be the first ones to die.
Those that wanted to survive and live well in the wretched place that ate people without throwing out the bones would have to use the cruelest methods and schemes in order to live life without worries.
After serving for a time in the palace, their personality would have undergone a huge change, no longer the person they once were before they entered the palace.
Their hands that were once clean and pure would be soaked in blood.
Their minds would be filled with endless suspicions.
They had made it through a lifetime of schemes and plots.
Unfortunately, one of them had succumbed to the poisonous plots of the court and would not live to see the year end.
Huang Taiwu poured the jar of terrible wine into the two cups on the table. The liquid that came out was a clear liquid like water, but slightly thicker. Although heavily diluted, it still had a scent of alcohol to it.
[This would not be enough to get anyone drunk.] Huang Taiwu secretly thought.
"Please forgive this wine, the guards had to get this on short notice."
"What does a dying man like me have to complain about?" Shen Congan asked as he took up the cup of wine and took in the weak aroma.
[Hmm… less than a 15% true alcohol concentration.]
"A toast to you my old friend." Huang Taiwu said as he raised his cup.
This was not the best place to be drinking after all this was the prisons where countless people had died.
Shen Congan also held his cup to toast in the air to return the toast.
But at that moment, nothing truly mattered. It was their bonds throughout the years that were remembered at the moment.
Huang Taiwu left the prisons in a depressed state, walking in the empty streets. He slightly shivered from the chilling winds that blew through the city.
He would soon forget the words that were spoken in that cell, dismissing it as nothing more than the mad words of a dying man.
The sun was no longer in the sky, it had long set, coming out was the coldness of the impending winter. The leaves of the trees had started to fall, leaving their branches bare, and the ground littered with dead withered leaves.
Next year, the tree will grow new leaves to replace the old that had died. The cycle would continue the following years, forever repeating.
It was then that he realized that after so many years, they were tired. Tired of the restless years of being chess pieces of the high ranking officials' hidden battles for all those years.
Tired of it all.
Within Shen manor's forbidden ground.
Captain Zhou was within the forbidden ground with his two men. Their arms were kept near their sabers, on high alert, in case anything unexpected were to occur.
Their footsteps echoed throughout the desolated place, it seemed that there had not been a living soul that stepped foot there in a while.
The entirety of the sky was covered with dark clouds, so much so that it seemed the beautiful and luminous goddess of the moon did not wish to what would happen to these men once they step foot into the forbidden ground.
"This place is not so bad." One of the guards said with a smirk. He was referring to the servants who went mad after walking in here.
"Do not get ahead of yourself. You never know." The other guard said to him.
The two of them were walking behind captain Zhou, following his move as they walked in this forsaken place that didn't even seem to be part of a wealthy manor. In fact, it seemed more like a desolate place in the middle of a dwelling that had been abandoned for centuries.
The feeling of walking in this place was an eerie feeling, like walking through a graveyard or a battlefield, the site where hundreds of thousands lost their lives.
The forbidden ground was essentially falling apart, it was once a glamorous manor where it served as the living quarters for countless people, but today, its glory days were long gone, with nothing but darkness, broken down and crumbling to dust.
Since there were so many smaller buildings and only one building that seemed to be the main centre. They decided it would be best to check the largest house first and then check on the smaller ones after.
When captain Zhou laid his eyes on the building, he felt that the building seemed off, the front of the building did not have a plaque indicating its name like one would see in an aristocratic family. His two men did not think there was much off about the building, aside from the windows that seemed to be sealed off with an unknown material.
The door was kept strictly closed, the door was extremely uninviting, giving off a hostile aura. It would shun all those visitors far away, making sure they would never return again.
Perhaps they would have been better off not entering.