“What’s the situation now? Is there a place where smoke is not popping up in all the Nine States? The Southland of Sorcerers may be a perilous place, but is the Dark Cloud Prairie not? Is the West Plateau not? Even the East Lake, which was a peaceful and prosperous land of honey and milk in the past, is also plagued by thieves and bandits!”
Appeasing Ambassador Ling smiled bitterly and said, “We are either going to appease the barbarians at the Southland of Sorcerers, the West Plateau to dispel the rebels, the East Lake to suppress the evil Cultivators, or even the Dark Cloud to fight against the iron cavalry of Ghost Qin… Are any of the opponents easy to deal with?
“Besides, the Ling family is now deeply mired in turbulence. One wrong step, and we will be doomed forever. My daughter, you must note that there can always be someone eavesdropping on us. Even if barriers have been installed inside the camp, you still have to be cautious in case you say anything wrong!”
“Father, I know I’m wrong.” Expressionlessly, Ling Lanyin bowed and, after pausing for a moment, continued. “However, Father, you must be clear that the barbarians are untrustworthy with their unknown backgrounds. Chances are that they have joined Ghost Qin in secret and will stab us right in the back at a crucial moment!”
“How can I not know that?” Appeasing Ambassador Ling sighed and said, “Not only is the young man in the Building Foundation Stage who jumped out of nowhere today very uncanny, are any of the hundred or so barbarian Cultivators who joined our army earlier not scoundrels that will change their sides when anything goes wrong?
“It is almost certain that they have placed wagers on both sides!
“They are ostensibly loyal to the court, but will they not waver until everything is settled? If we defeat the Cultivators from Ghost Qin in the battle, they will still be His Majesty’s loyal and obedient subjects. However, as soon as the first sign of our failure shows up, hehe, I guarantee that they will lunge at us like hyenas, devour us, and offer our bones to Ghost Qin for a reward!
“Those barbarian Cultivators are sure to be connected with Ghost Qin. What does it matter even if the young man in the Building Foundation Stage is, too? Moreover, I can tell that he is blatantly brutal and does not look like a guy of schemes. Chances are that he will prove to be the most ‘loyal’ one of them all!”
Appeasing Ambassador Ling’s words were filled with endless devastation. After a miserable smile, he comforted himself. “Thankfully, the same goes for the barbarian Cultivators who joined the Ghost Qin’s side. They are all waiting for the final outcome, too. As long as we demonstrate the magnificent power of the court, they will certainly not act recklessly. Chances are that they will tie up the Ghost Qin soldiers and deliver them to us!
“All in all, the barbarian Cultivators can only serve as cheerleaders. It eventually depends on the Black Tiger Iron Guards, the Ling family’s private troop, and your Purple Pole Sword Sect. I understand the logic perfectly!”
“Rest assured, Father!” When her sect was mentioned, Ling Lanyin seemed even more proud than when the ‘Ling family’ was brought up a moment ago. She stood straight, her eyes glittering, before she declared resolutely, “The Ling family and the Purple Pole Sword Sect have been associated for five hundred years. The leaders of our family of every generation have been close friends to the elders of the Purple Pole Sword Sect. They will certainly not watch the Ling family fall and do nothing!
“Let me tell you a great piece of news, Father. This morning, I just received the purple smoke message of my sect. My eldest senior brother began marching toward the Southland of Sorcerers to reinforce our army with almost a hundred elites of the Purple Pole Sword Sect five days ago!
“But later, they received a report that a batch of Cultivators from Ghost Qin was crossing the Sorcerers’ River to enter the Southland of Sorcerers, too. Therefore, they decided to ambush and block the enemy. It is believed that they will arrive with the heads of those Cultivators in three days!”
“Your eldest senior brother?” Appeasing Ambassador Ling was dazed for a moment. Overjoyed, he lost all his demeanor as the ‘Appeasing Ambassador’ and exclaimed, “Isn’t he ‘Thunderous Straight Swordsman’ Lou Chongxiao? As the youngest Cultivator in the Nascent Soul Stage in the Purple Pole Sword Sect, he has come in person?”
“Exactly!” Ling Lanyin smiled. “You can rest assured, Father. The Purple Pole Sword Sect will never abandon the Ling family!”
Appeasing Ambassador Ling nodded with mixed feelings.
The Ling family of Luochuan and the Purple Pole Sword Sect were indeed deeply connected. However, Lou Chongxiao, the best sword Cultivator in the younger generation in the sect, had been sent out to help the battle certainly not just because of the Ling family.
The most important factor was probably his daughter, who had revealed her talents in training at a young age, advanced into the peak of the Core Formation Stage before thirty, and enjoyed a promising future as the last true disciple of the leader of her sect.
A sword Cultivator in the Nascent Soul Stage would certainly be a great help for the fierce battles to come. Appeasing Ambassador Ling was finally more or less eased after months of nervousness.
While the father and the daughter were talking inside the wagon, one of the subjects they mentioned—namely the young man in the Building Foundation Stage, Li Yao—was actually riding a giant serpent more than ten meters long and as thick as a bucket. He was moving forward unhurriedly at the back of the team.
As a close friend to the Fire Ant King, and since Jin Xinyue, the nominal leader of the Pantheon of Demons, was his disciple, it had not been a problem at all for him to learn a few tricks to domesticate and maneuver demon beasts.
Besides, the Blood Stripe Virus boasted the naturally-endowed talents to suppress and modify animals.
Therefore, it was more than simple for him to deal with a tiny High-Crowned Lethal Python. Without any trouble, the beast was tamed as obediently as a lengthened dog.
The rest of the team, including the other barbarian Cultivators, were all dumbfounded by his ferocious mount and did not dare greet him at all.
It was exactly the quietness that Li Yao needed.
His appearance right now was slightly different from when he had just left the canyon.
It was not his face that had changed but the air around him.
The gloom and brutality were hidden in the deepest part of his eyes. The half-smile was gone, too. His lips were dangling down, and his eyeballs were barely moving at all. He would stare at anybody who made eye contact with him without retreating.
More toughness and recklessness had been added to himself to better fit for the image of a fearless wildling.
He was not hiding his capabilities because he intended to ‘play a pig that ate the tiger’.
If anybody wanted to play a pig that ate the tiger, their target should at least be a tiger. The barbarian Cultivators in the Refinement Stage and the Building Foundation Stage at best, Appeasing Ambassador Ling at the beginning level of the Building Foundation Stage, and the female Cultivator at the peak of the Core Formation Stage were nothing more than geckos in Li Yao’s eyes.
Would there be any gratification in playing a tiger that ate geckos?
It was just that Li Yao was unaware whether or not the identity of ‘Master Spiritual Vulture’ entailed any trouble. If the guy was a well-loathed, notorious evil Cultivator, or he once raped and killed a family member of a certain Divinity Transformation Stage Cultivator, Li Yao would in no way pick such an identity.
After he made sure that the identity was okay, he would naturally resume his role as a Nascent Soul Stage Cultivator in order to make acquaintances with the upper class of the society.
While there was no disturbance, Li Yao began to compile the second observation report in his head.
“Observation report of the foreign world, issue two.
“I’ve lived in this Sector for twenty-three days. After eavesdropping on the conversations among the locals with Neltharion, I have finally gained a basic understanding about this world.
“The world here is named the ‘Ancient Sages Sector’. I estimate that the so-called ‘ancient sages’ refer to the giant corpses of the Pangu Clan or the Nuwa Clan, which are not rare at all in this Sector. It appears that the primeval items are truly worshipped in this world.
“The good news is that the Ancient Sages Sector is governed by Great Qian, a central dynasty that is generally civilized. The Great Qian Dynasty boasts thorough law, ethics, and bureaucratic systems. At least, this is not a bloody jungle where cannibalism prevails. It is possible for the government of the Star Glory Federation and the government of the Great Qian Dynasty to communicate and ally.
“The bad news is that the Great Qian Dynasty has ruled the Ancient Sages Sector for a thousand years. There are no ever-lasting dynasties in any world. The Great Qian Dynasty cannot get away from the law of history, either. It is now running into a dead end!
“The Great Qian Dynasty is a dynasty supported by Cultivation sects. The sole significance of its existence is to provide population, food, crystals, and other resources for the Cultivation sects stably, continuously, and efficiently.
“The royal family of the Great Qian Dynasty was originally the biggest Cultivation sect itself.
“However, after a thousand years of steady development, the experts in the royal family are dwindling, while many of the local sects are thriving. They are acquiring land, sheltering peasants, raising private troops, and expanding their forces, making it more and more difficult to restrain them.
“A hundred years ago, because of the changes in the density of the dark nebula around the Ancient Sages Sector, the average temperature of the Ancient Sages Sector dropped by more than ten degrees. It is now in a brief ‘Ice Age’. Natural disasters, including large-scale famines, are breaking out every once in a while!
“The more famines, the more peasants will have to run away from their homes, and the more sects will acquire their lands, shelter the peasants, and expand their forces. The more powerful the sects are, the weaker the dynasty will be. It has gradually become a vicious cycle.
“Today, the smoke of war is rising throughout the Great Qian Dynasty’s territory.
“The southeast place, which used to be wealthy, is witnessing a ‘Riot of White Lotus’. Half of the country is on fire.
“In the northwest, a killing god known as the Heaven Battering King has rebelled with thousands of fleeing peasants. They are raging like locusts and leave absolutely nothing behind wherever they go.
“In the northern prairies, a formerly unknown group called ‘Ghost Qin’ is also flourishing. Those people are good at raising a kind of beast named Dragon Wolf, which is as fast and as unpredictable as the wind!
“When the Great Qian Dynasty was at its pinnacle, Ghost Qin was but minor trouble. However, with the Riot of White Lotus and the Haven Battering King causing trouble in the northwest, the Great Qian Dynasty’s resources have been greatly wasted, and Ghost Qin took the chance to rise!
“At the beginning of last year, Dark Cloud Ghost Knights, the main force of Ghost Qin, had a battle with the army of the Great Qian Dynasty in Flying Swallow Pass at the North Land, which turned out to be a one-sided slaughter!
“The Dark Cloud Ghost Knights took the opportunity to march forward toward Divine Capital, the center of the Great Qian Dynasty. The emperor at that time was so frightened that he died abruptly. The situation couldn’t be any worse right now.
“From the perspective of an observer, I highly doubt that the Great Qian Dynasty’s reign over the Ancient Sages Sector can last long. Perhaps, it’s better for us to be prepared to deal with a new government?”