The Human Emperor Chapter 644
Chapter 644: The Whole Town Turns Out
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
"Young Master Wang Chong has come back!"
As Xu Gan was speaking, a loud and sharp shout came from the distance. A sharp-eyed figure on the city gate had noticed Wang Chong's group and immediately begun to shout.
The quiet capital was suddenly filled with shrieks of delight.
"Young Master Chong is back!"
"Light the firecrackers!"
"Everyone, let's greet him at the city gate!"
"The young hero of the south has returned!"
"Brother Chong is mine! Don't fight over him with me!"
The entire capital was astir, the sounds of firecrackers filling the air. As if this was some sort of signal, countless people began to surge out of the city gate, all their faces flushed with excitement.
The cheers for Wang Chong echoed to the heavens, mixed in with the ecstatic screams of young women. Let alone Bai Siling and Zhao Yatong, even Wang Chong was left wide-eyed.
"You can't see it? You have quite a lot of girls that like you!"
An icy and bitter voice came from behind Wang Chong. Huang Qian-er, her massive sword slung on her back, was giving him a cold glare.
"Heheh, I didn't expect to be this welcomed," Wang Chong said.
These words elicited a cold snort from all three girls at his side.
Although they always maintained a distance that was neither close to nor far from Wang Chong, not knowing whether they counted as friends or more than that, there was one thing that all three agreed on: Wang Chong was their own exclusive property.
The trio would permit any of their group to get close to Wang Chong, but any other girl was forbidden.
Wang Chong gave an awkward laugh and quickly fell silent.
"Young Master, over here!"
A familiar voice attracted Wang Chong's attention. Turning his head, he saw two figures riding horses toward him.
"Brother Guo, Brother Chai! Why did you come?"
Wang Chong's eyes brightened in surprise as he turned his horse in the direction of the newcomers. These two were his friends from Kunwu Training Camp, Guo Feng and Chai Zhiyi.
The Guo Clan and the Chai Clan were founding families of the Great Tang and wielded incredible authority. Guo Feng and Chai Zhiyi, as heirs to their clans, were not people that ordinary people could even hope to meet, much less be welcomed by.
Wang Chong hadn't expected them to be waiting for him at the city gate.
"Hahaha, we heard that Young Master Chong was returning to the capital. Brother Chai and I were waiting here for a while."
Guo Feng clasped his hands and smiled.
"The great feat Young Master accomplished in the southwest has made countless people anxious to meet Young Master Chong. We wanted to be first, so we waited at the city gate," Chai Zhiyi added with a smile.
"Worthy brothers, you're too polite."
Wang Chong clasped his hands in greeting. He had originally believed that this pair were being polite, but he quickly realized that they hadn't been exaggerating.
"Young Master Wang! Young Master Wang, over here!"
A burst of shouts rang out in the air as the crowd around the city gate became restless. By the time Wang Chong had turned his head, a massive crowd had surged out. The Zhang Clan, the Lu Clan, the Huang Clan, and the Cheng Clan had all come out.
Before Wang Chong could come to his senses, there was another burst of shouts.
"Young Master Chong is back! Young Master Chong is back!"
Following behind the four sword-smithing clans were the countless people from the capital's great clans. Wang Chong was very unfamiliar with most of these people, but when he saw the emblems on their clothes, he immediately recognized them
These people were from the clans who had exchanged their clan experts for Wootz Steel swords.
It appeared that even these clans had come to celebrate the victory in the southwest.
"Young Master Chong, our clan head has invited you. We hope that Young Master Chong can pay a visit to our estate."
"Young Master Chong, this is a small courtesy from our clan. We hope that Young Master accepts it."
"Young Master must be tired from your travels and require rest. This is our clan head's invitation. Whenever it conveniences Young Master, please come and have a chat at the Bi Residence. Our clan head will definitely welcome you."
"Young Master Chong, we are the capital's Wei Clan. Does Young Master still require any guards? We brought over ten-some people this time. If Young Master likes them, please, take them. Young Master has accomplished so much for the Great Tang, so take this as a small gift from the clan head."
"There's us as well! Us too!"
Countless clan heads, their heirs, or their stewards gathered around Wang Chong, gifting him treasures or powerful guards, and some of the clans had even brought their daughters from the main line, hoping to match them with Wang Chong and unite in marriage with the Wang Clan.
Even though Wang Chong had experienced the war in the southwest, defeating foes like Dalun Ruozan and Huoshu Huicang and tempering a formidable heart, when he saw those gorgeous daughters raising the curtains and descending from their carriages, he couldn't help but blush.
Behind Wang Chong, Bai Siling, Huang Qian-er, and Zhao Yatong had frigid expressions, their eyes spitting flames as they viciously glared at the clan heads who had brought their daughters.
When the crowd was at its most excited, the earth rumbled as two fully-armored and armed units of cavalry charged out of the gate. Following behind these cavalry were numerous bodyguards and finally, several luxurious and dignified carriages of bronze.
Even though no one could see inside, an aura as majestic as a mountain was emerging from one of the carriages, spreading in every direction.
Everyone who felt this aura trembled in fear and scattered like mice encountering a cat, subconsciously yielding the path.
"Ah! The Bureau of Military Personnel!"
Upon seeing the leading bronze carriage, the emblem stamped on it and the flag snapping in the wind, even the clan heads began to pale and give way.
In the entire capital, in all of the Great Tang, only one person dared to use this emblem and wave this flag.
That person's identity and status was not something that any of these clan heads, elders, or scions could provoke.
With a massive bang, the two valiant groups of cavalry suddenly spread apart, surrounding Wang Chong and his party.
"Who is it?!"
Bai Siling and Zhao Yatong paled at this sight, immediately riding their horses forward.
"Wait a moment!"
Wang Chong opened his arms wide to stop them. The emblem on this carriage hadn't been in this capital for long, and not many people recognized it. But Wang Chong had seen it before in the southwest.
As he was thinking, the door to the carriage opened, and a luxurious blue boot, steeped in authority, extended out of the carriage. Dressed in the red robe of an official of the first rank, adorned with a jade python belt, Zhangchou Jianqiong emerged. His energy, as vast as the mountains and seas, immediately caused everyone to bow.
The Tiger of the Empire!
Putting aside his esteemed rank of Minister of War, the person before Wang Chong still held the influential status of Imperial Great General. In the southwest war, Zhangchou Jianqiong's Annan Protectorate army had lost more than one thousand soldiers, putting the southwest in peril.
In the capital, everyone knew that the moment the southwest was lost would be the moment that the new Minister of War would be forced to resign. If he had not been so anxious for authority and left the southwest without permission, giving the Mengshe-Tsang alliance the chance to strike, the southwest would have never ended up in such a state.
Moreover, the new Annan Protector-General Xianyu Zhongtong had been recommended by him!
But, unforeseen by anyone, Wang Chong's intervention in the southwest war had averted catastrophe and even turned defeat into victory. Four hundred thousand soldiers of the Mengshe-Tsang army had been defeated, and a major victory had been achieved in the southwest!
Xianyu Zhongtong and the 180,000 soldiers of the Annan Protectorate army were now not only faultless, they had also achieved great deeds. As a result, Zhangchou Jianqiong was now regarded as having managed the army correctly and having a good eye for people. The Sage Emperor had commended him, and his new position as Minister of War was now as sturdy as stone.
No one could have foreseen this.
Just seeing Zhangchou Jianqiong's ruddy complexion as he stepped out of the carriage was enough to recognize that he was currently flushed with success, celebrating the fulfillment of his dream.
"Young Master Chong!"
Zhangchou Jianqiong swept his eyes around as he stepped out of the carriage. Before Wang Chong could come forward, he took the initiative and walked over. With a solemn expression, he gave Wang Chong an extremely deep and respectful bow.
"Zhangchou has awaited your noble presence for a long time. Please, accept this bow!"
The crowd immediately began to chatter upon seeing Zhangchou Jianqiong bow to Wang Chong. No one could have imagined that Zhangchou Jianqiong, the Minister of War, would bow to Wang Chong in front of so many people.
Even Bai Siling and Zhao Yatong were caught by surprise. They hurriedly dismounted and stood on the sides of the road.
Zhangchou Jianqiong was the Minister of War, the Tiger of the Empire, one of the Great Tang's few Great Generals, and a first-ranked official of the Imperial Court. Regardless of his connection to the southwest rebellion, he still carried a most esteemed status.
Purely in terms of strength, Zhangchou Jianqiong was no less than Dalun Ruozan, Huoshu Huicang, or Duan Gequan. Moreover, he now had his status as Minister of War, making him a true dignitary of the Great Tang Empire. This was not someone that any clan present could provoke.
Bai Siling and Zhao Yatong were both from extremely old and storied clans, but they still did not dare to act rashly in front of Zhangchou Jianqiong.
On this occasion, Zhangchou Jianqiong had clearly come to meet Wang Chong. No one except Wang Chong was allowed to accept this bow.
"Lord Minister is too polite. Wang Chong cannot accept this!"
Wang Chong was also stunned. He had also not expected Zhangchou Jianqiong to give him such a deep bow in front of so many people. He hastily stepped forward to help Zhangchou Jianqiong stand up.
"In the war of the southwest, Young Master has served the Great Tang, worked for the benefit of the state and common people, and is the savior of my Annan Protectorate army. It is not at all excessive to accept this bow from Zhangchou Jianqiong!" Zhangchou Jianqiong solemnly declared, his every word spoken from the heart.