His words swept across all the barbarian Cultivators’ heart like a hurricane.
Their greed for the treasures and excitement about the official posts entirely vanished. All the barbarian Cultivators were dumbfounded, as if they had been struck by lightning.
Attack Huo Wujiu at night!
Kill all of the Ghost Qin people!
That—that must be a joke!
Li Yao, however, was applauding in his heart.
So, that was the real plan!
Ling Shoujing had intentionally declared in public during the day that he would decree Huo Wuji the ‘Chieftain of the South Land’ on behalf of the emperor tomorrow.
Then, he threw a party at night, where everybody enjoyed themselves, and announced, as if it were real, that a test would be held in the next three days to select qualified warriors.
Everything that he did was a trick to fool the enemy into thinking that he truly meant to fight the Ghost Qin people in the Hundred Victories Great Arena.
But in fact, he had never intended to play a game in any arena since the very beginning.
The Appeasing Ambassador of the Fifth Prefecture of the South Land of Sorcerers had one and only one idea, which was to execute the barbarians and the hostile soldiers who defied the emperor’s will and settle everything cleanly once and for all!
Li Yao could feel the determination and domination of the central dynasty from Ling Shoujing’s decision.
That was the right thing to do. How could an affair of national importance be decided in the arena? And not just one game in the arena but more than a hundred in a row? Only psychos would do such a thing!
Li Yao’s estimation on the intelligence of the leadership of the Ancient Sages Sector was more or less improved.
The real barbarian Cultivators, however, were thinking otherwise. Many of them grew anxious after a brief silence.
“For hundreds of years, it has been a tradition in the South Land of Sorcerers to settle scores through the Hundred Victories Great Arena. It might pass if neither party agreed to resolve their conflict through the Hundred Victories Great Arena, but now that the agreement has been made, it does not seem appropriate to assault before the game starts, does it?”
“We are going to be punished by the ghosts who were killed on the Hundred Victories Great Arena!”
“Master Black Moon is the host of the Hundred Victories Great Arena this time. The two brothers of the Huo family only reached a truce for his sake. How do we explain it to Master Black Moon if we launch a reckless assault?”
Everybody’s opinion differed, but the general idea was that they were not afraid of the tough soldiers from Ghost Qin but the wrath of Master Black Moon.
The peace negotiation was conducted because of Master Black Moon’s facilitation. If the Great Qian Dynasty was going to break the truce and assault the other side, how would Master Black Moon feel?
The wrath of a Nascent Soul Stage Cultivator was never to be underestimated. Maybe, Ling Shoujing would be able to resist it with his identity as the emperor’s envoy of the Great Qian Dynasty. However, the barbarian Cultivators locally born and raised could never bear the consequences of slapping Master Black Moon’s face blatantly like that.
Ling Shoujing smiled confidently and clapped his hands. Two people walked into the tent from the back.
The first guy was Huo Wuji, the leader of barbarians who was close to the Great Qian Dynasty.
The second guy, however, turned out to be Master Black Moon—the greatest expert in the South Land of Sorcerers, the most respected sorcerer in the hundred tribes, the middleman of the negotiation, and the host of the Hundred Victories Great Arena!
For a moment, there was nothing but devastating gasps inside the tent.
Thankfully, the tent was made of nine layers of bull hide, and rune arrays to block waves were sewn in between every two layers. Therefore, however noisy it was inside the tent, nobody would hear anything outside.
“I was terribly deceived by Huo Wujiu!”
Master Black Moon’s pale, big face that looked like a full moon was packed with hatred that did not exist during the day. He put it straightforwardly. “Huo Wujiu told me that Huo Wuji and assassins from the Great Qian Dynasty murdered the leader of the Fire Rude Clan, that he was merely avenging his father. In my carelessness, I believed his bullsh*t and promised him that the issue would be settled in the Hundred Victories Great Arena under my name!
“However, I have discovered a lot of evidence that suggests it was the ruthless, despicable dog who killed his own father!
“Not only did he kill his own father, he had also betrayed the court, which has always given special privileges to the South Land of Sorcerers. He was planning to involve the entire South Land of Sorcerers in the flames of war! Such a man must’ve been possessed by the evil god. His qualification to participate in the Hundred Victories Great Arena should be deprived!
“My identity is very special. Many tribes and villages that follow Huo Wuji are protected by me, too. Although they have joined Ghost Qin’s side, I still can’t bear to attack them in person.
“All in all, from this moment on to the morning, everything that will happen will be left aside. I will not question anyone for anything they do!”
Master Black Moon glanced at everyone coldly after saying that, as if he were still angry. He then exited from the back of the tent. Very soon, his aura had entirely disappeared.
It was another old and cunning fox, who was hoping to watch the two tigers fight while doing nothing.
They could decide who the final winner was either through the arena or through assaults before the games. Everything was fine as long as his interests were not harmed.
But his promise overjoyed all the barbarian Cultivators.
What Ling Shoujing said next made their blood boil even harder. They were all roaring in excitement.
“In the battle to come, one hostile barbarian Cultivator’s head will be rewarded with fifty kilograms of gold and five kilograms of crystals, and one Ghost Qin Cultivator’s head will be rewarded with a hundred and fifty kilograms of gold and fifteen kilograms of crystals! Whoever kills Huo Wujiu or the leader of the Ghost Qin soldiers will be rewarded with fifty kilograms of crystals!”
Li Yao was aware that the refinement and purification procedures in the Ancient Sages Sector were not advanced yet. Most of the crystals they used were the raw minerals that contained tremendous impurities.
Even so, it was still quite shocking for crystals, which were often measured in ‘grams’, to now be presented in loads of dozens of kilograms.
When the reward was good enough, there would certainly be someone brave enough. Also, Ling Shoujing had thoroughly planned beforehand. Even Master Black Moon was vaguely on their side.
Therefore, the barbarian Cultivators all felt that the assault would be a sure success.
At that moment, the morale was higher than ever.
The sixty-eight barbarian Cultivators that Ling Shoujing selected were the most simpleminded ones of all in the first place. After all the promises and temptations, they had almost turned into crazy, ravenous tigers.
But Ling Shoujing felt that it was not good enough yet. He had buckets of Empyrean Drunk Wine delivered again.
This time, Li Yao tasted a certain exhilarant in the wine.
It was similar to ‘Incendiary’, which Fengyu Zhong’s pirate gang liked to inject to the space pirates before a battle. Such drugs could stimulate the nerve endings, accelerate the secretion of adrenaline, and trigger the potentials of one’s soul.
After drinking the delicious wine that was mixed with excitants, the barbarian Cultivators all had bloodshot eyes and forgot all their concerns. They looked like hungry ghosts that had come back to life.
An hour later, it was the darkest moment before dawn and also the time when people were sleeping most tightly.
Huo Wuji’s camp was already filled with snores, but some of the ‘energetic’ barbarian Cultivators were still drinking, singing, and laughing as if they were still enjoying the party.
A team of Cultivators, who had covered their spiritual energy and their body with the Night Stalker Cloaks, however, left the camp quietly and lunged at the opponent’s camp after bypassing the Fire Rude Clan’s town.
There was nothing but silence in Huo Wujiu’s camp, too.
Now that the deal had been made that everything would be settled through the Hundred Victories Great Arena three days later, the barbarian and Ghost Qin Cultivators on Huo Wujiu’s side were naturally taking a good rest to prepare themselves.
There were only a few torches around the camp. Under the firefly-like light, it could be seen that several tough-looking Ghost Qin Cultivators were still awake.
However, they were from the northern prairies, which were accompanied by freezing wind all year around, and they were highly unused to the hot, damp, smoky forests of the southland. Tortured by the mosquitoes and bugs, they were all drowsy, and their jaws would drop to the ground now and then.
The night assault was like a crocodile enshrouded in mud when it crept out of the swamp without a sound toward the prey under the cover of darkness.
When it was a hundred meters away from Huo Wujiu’s camp, the ‘crocodile’ split into five smaller, agiler vipers.
To this moment, Huo Wujiu’s camp was still peaceful and quiet, as if they never dreamt that the emperor’s army would ambush them in disregard of the deal.
Suddenly, a miserable scream tore apart the quiet night sky and opened the curtain on the brutal assault.
Boom! Boom, boom, boom!
The Taiyi Heart Stabbing Grenades were exploding in Huo Wujiu’s camp nonstop, blowing many tents as well as the soldiers inside into the sky.
Ling Shoujing, with the experts of the Black Tiger Iron Guards, went on a rampage inside Huo Wujiu’s camp, setting fire, killing, and trampling.
Ling Lanyin, the female Cultivator, was rushing forward unstoppably on her own.
The barbarian Cultivators, befuddled by the high reward, were like unchained tigers. They were a hundred times more ferocious than during the day.
While the three lanes pushed forward, many barbarian soldiers were killed when they were still sound asleep, and the entire camp was on fire. It was on the brink of destruction.
Ling Shoujing, Ling Lanyin, and the barbarian Cultivators met again at the center of the camp without any trouble like three arrowheads.
The battle had progressed so well that it almost felt creepy.
To this moment, most of the victims that they had killed were ordinary soldiers and generals. They had not met a single barbarian Cultivator under Huo Wujiu’s command.
Ling Shoujing and Ling Lanyin vaguely smelt the scent of schemes.
However, the barbarian Cultivators on their side were too bloodthirsty to care about that.
“Huo Wujiu’s main tent is right ahead. Let’s go!”
Dozens of barbarian Cultivators roared and lunged into the most glamorous tent of all.
However, it was not the sound of blades colliding as they expected which echoed but a huge explosion.
While smoke was popping up, the entire tent fell into a giant pit, in which green flames were dancing into many ghost hands, entangling the barbarian Cultivators and burning them alive!
The wolf bone horn was blown in the forests of the South Land of Sorcerers, in the same breathtaking and blood-freezing way as it was blown on the Dark Cloud Prairies in the north.
Pa! Pa! Pa! Pa!
Fireworks were shot to the sky like cannonballs, glowing and illuminating the land as if it were daylight.
The Black Tiger Iron Guards that Ling Shoujing had brought with him and the female Cultivator Ling Lanyin had nowhere to hide at all under the pale brilliance.
Lights and shadows were shaking in the obscure forests around. Horses and wolves were roaring. The Ghost Qin Knights whose number they could not predict had surrounded them!