The Human Emperor Chapter 1001
Chapter 1001: Discovery
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
Gao Xianzhi and Cheng Qianli were dazed by Wang Chong's words, but as they began to understand, they fell silent, and the air became oppressive.
Chen Bin had served at Wang Chong's side for a very long time. He began fighting side by side with Wang Chong in the southwest, rendering great service, then served Wang Chong during the construction of the City of Steel and in the clashes with Dusong Mangpoje on the Tibetan Plateau, and finally, he led the ballista army at this Battle of Talas. Chen Bin had done everything he could to assist Wang Chong and had been an able subordinate.
Wang Chong was not worried about whether Chen Bin would divulge the secret, as this was absolutely impossible for someone of Chen Bin's character. But if he swore an oath to never speak, someone of Duwu Sili's style was liable to kill him.
"Lord Marquis, what should we do now?"
Xue Qianjun finally voiced the question on everyone's mind. Chen Bin was very popular amongst the troops, and after fighting alongside his comrades in battle, he would hold a feast and make merry, treating the soldiers like his own brothers. One could easily imagine what they all felt when they heard that Chen Bin had been taken hostage.
"Come! Bring me ink and paper. I want to write a letter to Duwu Sili. I will personally handle this matter."
Wang Chong looked eastward, a chilling light in his eyes.
Time slowly passed, and as the sun began to sink into the west, the sky darkened. Sixty li from Talas, countless wolves wandered the earth. Behind this vast pack of wolves, an enormous banner of a golden wolf on blue fluttered in the air, and behind this banner were countless tents. Duwu Sili had led the Turkic army to set up camp here.
With this stage of the battle over, the Turkic army should have been able to relax, but the reality was completely different. The camp was strictly guarded both within and without, the air saturated with tension.
"How is it?"
In the white tent in the very center of the camp, Duwu Sili turned to look at one of the shamans accompanying the army.
"Milord, his injuries are very serious. He was heavily wounded before you even took him hostage. In his current condition, it will be hard for him to take even a few rounds of interrogation, much less torture," concluded an emaciated shaman, his figure shrouded in a black robe and exuding a thick herbal aroma.
He glanced at Chen Bin, laid out on a bed of lambskin, with deeply worried eyes. This Tang's body was stained with blood and his clothes were in tatters. His injuries already appeared very serious.
And yet his interior was even worse than his exterior. Forty percent of his bones were broken, his meridians were in chaos, and his internal organs had shifted… Any one of these injuries would eventually be fatal, much less all of them together.
Chen Bin propped himself up and jeered, "You don't need to waste your time… Kah, no matter what you want to know, I won't tell you." But he was only able to manage these few words before he began to fiercely cough, each time spitting blood which speckled his pale face.
"You've lost too much blood. If you get any further agitated, you will die."
The emaciated Turkic shaman slowly walked over, speaking in an extremely soothing voice. War was a matter for soldiers. This shaman saw only the sick and the healthy. The sight of this Han did not incite any emotions in him. All he saw was an ordinary person.
"Haha, who cares if I die? If I craved life and feared death, I would have never stepped onto the battlefield. Duwu Sili, don't waste your effort. I won't tell you any secrets about formation phenomena. You should just hurry up and kill me."
Chen Bin gave a faint smile, a fearless expression on his face. Even the shaman could not help but feel a hint of admiration toward this dauntless attitude.
"Hmph, you want to die? It's not that easy. Until I get what I want, even dying will be a challenge for you!"
Duwu Sili's gaze chilled as he strode forward and seized Chen Bin's numb right hand. Rumble! Golden light flashed as majestic energy imbued with boundless vitality surged into Chen Bin's body.
Chen Bin yelled, his body straightening as the enormous vitality flooded through his body. The power of this vitality caused the injuries on Chen Bin's body to heal with astonishing speed. At some point, a magnificent and nearly tangible golden light had engulfed the entire tent.
"If Duwu Sili wants to save someone, no one can stop him! Obediently confess the secret of formation phenomena to me!"
Duwu Sili's voice boomed like thunder within the tent.
Much later, when night had fallen, Duwu Sili finally emerged from the tent. His face was a little pale, but his expression overall was one of extreme joy. He had consumed a great deal of energy for this Tang. Anyone else would think this person extremely unworthy of Duwu Sili's efforts, but Duwu Sili thought the exact opposite.
In his eyes, this Tang represented infinite possibilities for the Western Turkic Khaganate.
If he could get the secret of formation phenomena from this Tang and then spread this secret through the Western Turkic Khaganate, the Khaganate had a chance of becoming an even stronger existence than Arabia. After all, even though the Arabian warhorses were the best in the world, the Western Turks had far more warhorses.
This puny Talas is no longer important. As long as I can get that thing, I will become the War God of the Western Turkic Khaganate. Perhaps I can even go a little farther… supplanting is a possibility.
Duwu Sili's mind thought of that forbidden word, but it got to his lips and went no further. Until he truly succeeded, Duwu Sili did not want to leave a single incriminating clue.
The winds blew around him, and as he looked up at the dark skies and the glistening stars, Duwu Sili suddenly felt much more relaxed.
At this moment, he heard a voice. Duwu Sili's brows creased together as he turned and saw a Turkic messenger rushing toward him.
"What's all the fuss about?" Duwu Sili said unhappily.
"Reporting! Great General, a Tang scout was spotted on the perimeter. Our men went to stop him, but we discovered that he fired an arrow at our gate. This was tied to the arrow."
The messenger got down on one knee and offered up the arrow and the letter that was tied to it.
Duwu Sili's brow rose as his right hand lightly snatched at air. The messenger felt the weight on his hands lighten as the arrow and letter flew into Duwu Sili's hands.
A Great General's seal!
The large words in red imprinted on the back of the letter caused Duwu Sili's pupils to constrict and his face to pale.
This was not Duwu Sili's first time interacting with the Great Tang. He had contended the most against Beiting Protector-General An Sishun, and he was no stranger at all to this seal. This was a seal that only the Great Generals of the Central Plains could use. In the region of Talas, only one person could use this seal, and this person was not Wang Chong, but Gao Xianzhi.
"It came very quickly!"
Duwu Sili was rather surprised. He had expected that it would be quite a few hours before Chen Bin's capture was discovered. He had not expected the letter to come so quickly.
"These fellows are truly difficult to deal with."
A hint of apprehension flitted through his eyes as he opened the letter.
Though night had fallen, Talas was still brightly lit. Wang Chong, Li Siye, Huang Botian, Kong Zi-an, Xue Qianjun, and the other officers of the Qixi Protectorate army were gathered together. Although Gao Xianzhi and Cheng Sanyuan had chosen to return to their camp, they had sent Xi Yuanqing to represent them.
Both Gao Xianzhi and Cheng Qianli were in very awkward positions. Chen Bin's capture had to do with formation phenomena, and for them to agree to or oppose any plan was not proper. However, that they had sent Xi Yuanqing to represent them—a man whose status was only beneath theirs—was enough to show the importance they placed on this matter.
When the scout responsible for delivering the letter walked into the hall, Li Siye, Kong Zi-an, Huang Botian, Sun Zhiming, and the others began to stand.
"How was it? Any news?"
Wang Chong did not stand, but the anxiety in his eyes was enough to show that his concern was no less than the others'.
The scout ignored the others, walking straight to Wang Chong and getting down on one knee.
"The letter was successfully delivered. I personally fired the letter into the Turkic camp and saw their men take the letter away. But even though I waited outside for a long time, they never sent a reply letter."
Everyone immediately felt a tug at their hearts upon hearing this news.
"You're sure that the letter was delivered?"
"Maybe they didn't notice the letter on the arrow?"
"How long did you wait? What if Duwu Sili was writing a reply and you just happened to miss him?"
All of the officers began to nervously voice their questions.
"No." The scout shook his head and respectfully replied, "I personally saw them take the arrow out of the gate and remove the letter. I even saw a person rush to the commander's tent to deliver it."
Seeing that the officers in the hall wanted to ask more, Wang Chong finally stepped in. The hall immediately fell silent as everyone looked to Wang Chong.
"I know that all of you are very worried about Chen Bin's safety, but I hope that all of you can be a little calmer at this time. Since the scout has confirmed that the letter was delivered, the letter must have been delivered. The Great Tang scouts don't even fear death! Do you think they can't even deliver a letter?!"
Wang Chong's eyes turned sharp and fierce as they swept over the gathered officers. In a flash, everyone lowered their heads in shame. The scout also gave a sigh of relief, shooting Wang Chong a look of gratitude.
The scouts of the Great Tang were the finest in the world, whether it was in strength, experience, loyalty, or commitment to the mission. All of them knew this, but just as Wang Chong had said, their concern for Chen Bin's safety had made them lose their composure.
"Let me ask you, what did you see in the Western Turks' camp? Tell me every detail, big and small," Wang Chong said.