The Human Emperor Chapter 759
Chapter 759: The Strength Of An Entire Country
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
Who could have imagined that a little red wildflower that grew all across the plateau was actually able to help a warrior increase their lung capacity and the vitality and adaptability of their cells, allowing one to live on the plateau like the Tibetans?
But the only person who knew of this method at the moment was Wang Chong.
If the Tibetans were to know of this, they would definitely do their utmost to eradicate the roseroot, and it wasn't like such a thing hadn't happened before. This was why Wang Chong was attempting to keep it a secret, even have Yang Hongchang work through the Arabs to buy them.
With profit, there would be drive. Although no one was trading in roseroot right now, once Yang Hongchang began to buy it in large quantities, a large quantity would begin to appear in the market.
And it would definitely be the Tibetans who would be collecting and selling the roseroot. Not even if one beat them to death would they ever imagine that Wang Chong was buying these things so that he could deal with them.
Everything else is ready. The only thing lacking is the east wind1! It's about time to move on to the next part of the plan!
Wang Chong put down his tea cup, his right index finger lightly knocking against the table as a profound light flashed in his eyes.
"Zhang Que!" Wang Chong shouted out the door.
"Lord Marquis, this lowly person is here!"
A small and thin figure quickly strode in with a rock eagle perched on his shoulder. He had apparently been waiting outside the reception hall for a long time.
"Do you still remember the plan I spoke to you about before? Take your eagle team and go check things out. I need to know of any sign of activity in that place as soon as possible, especially if any Tibetans show up there," Wang Chong said.
"Understood! Lord Marquis, be at ease! This lowly one will definitely fulfill his mission."
Zhang Que was itching to go, his face brimming with excitement. After giving a bow, Zhang Que took off. Wang Chong was regarding him with more and more importance, and gentlemen were willing to die for their bosom friends. Thus, Zhang Que was more proactive toward a mission from Wang Chong than any other person.
Time slowly passed, and the entire City of Steel once more fell into peace and quiet. A few short conflicts occurred on the Ü-Tsang border with Qixi, but after that, everything returned to its usual serenity.
In the northwest region, everyone was keeping their eye on Ü-Tsang, Qixi, and Wushang, but meanwhile, in the northeast corner of the plateau, the place closest to Wushang upon descending the plateau, several figures had appeared and were silently measuring up the area.
"Team Leader, is this the place Lord Marquis asked us to survey?"
A member of the eagle team looked up at the plateau. Frankly speaking, there was nothing here besides steep cliffs. They couldn't even see any Tibetan cavalry.
"Mm." Zhang Que nodded.
"But what's so special about this place? I can't even see any Tibetan cavalry, so what are we here to look at?" another member of the eagle team asked.
Upon hearing these words, Zhang Que finally turned his head and glared at his companion.
"In the entire world, there's not a single person who dares to doubt Lord Marquis like this. The last people who did this were Huoshu Huicang and Dalun Ruozan, and you saw how they ended up. Not long ago, there was also Dayan Mangban, but in the end, Lord Marquis killed his cousin Dayan Pugyal and even destroyed Zhangzhung Training Camp.
"In the entire northwest of the empire, even one of the Lord Marquis's farts would probably cause the empire's Protector-Generals and Great Generals, as well as the Tibetan Great Generals, to research its meaning for half a day. No one can keep up with Lord Marquis's train of thought. At the very least, I would not dare to question Lord Marquis's decisions."
Zhang Que's words embarrassed the team member behind him, who immediately shut up.
A somewhat more quick-witted eagle team member nudged Zhang Que's arm and fawningly said, "Team Leader, you're the closest to Lord Marquis, almost like brothers with him. What have we come here to do?"
Whether it was in the Great Tang's capital or in the empire's northwest, everyone knew of the Young Marquis's incredible intelligence and extremely farsighted plans.
While his actions seemed very ordinary at first, future events would prove that they all had clear goals, and were decisions made after long and careful thought.
It was such that within the City of Steel, many people would speculate on what the Lord Marquis would do next on their breaks.
Zhang Que immediately began to hesitate.
"Team Leader, just tell us."
"Right, hurry and tell us."
Seeing the situation, the other members of the eagle team quickly began to urge him on.
"This–whatever. This is just my speculation, so you better not tell anyone else."
Zhang Que hesitated for a long time, but he was ultimately unable to resist the exhortations.
"Carefully look at this area. Doesn't it seem like a large triangle? When Lord Marquis fights a battle, he never makes a meaningless decision. If you dispatch some people to the top of that triangle, they'll be in an easily defensible position. The Tibetans can attack us through here at any time, and if they can't beat us, they'll just retreat, but we'll find it very hard to attack them up there. This is the steep cliffs all of you are talking about."
Zhang Que was no chick. He had spent many years at Old Eagle's side and listened to many of the stories about Wang Chong. He understood many things about the battlefield, and after joining Wang Chong on an expedition, he had an even greater understanding of military affairs.
If Wang Chong had heard Zhang Que's words, he would definitely be stupefied, because this was exactly what he had been thinking.
"But even that will be useless. If Lord Marquis occupies this place, he won't be able to hold it. Or is Lord Marquis planning to build a fort here?" one of the members said.
"Precisely—even occupying this place will be useless. And besides, it's flat ground up there, perfect for Tibetan warhorses to charge, while our backs would be to a cliff. Wouldn't that be certain death?" another member of the eagle team asked.
"This… I don't know. Lord Marquis definitely has a reason for his actions. How could we possibly guess at them?" Zhang Que said.
"We should quickly surveil the area and report back to Lord Marquis. If we delay Lord Marquis's plans, none of us will be able to bear the responsibility."
At these words, all the members tensed up and ceased any thoughts of playing around.
In a few moments, various birds took off from their shoulders and arms, into the skies.
Hammer after hammer smashed down on the red-hot iron, sending sparks flying and smoke billowing. If one looked around, one would see blacksmiths with bare arms and sweat dripping down their backs smashing down their hammers.
"Everyone, put your backs into it! The people in the capital have already asked us to hurry up three times.
"This is a big customer here, the Son of Heaven's disciple. If we mess this up, Lady Xu in the capital won't forgive us! She won't be looking for us in the future."
The Great Tang's Jiangnan West Circuit, Hong Province. A supervisor holding a whip was walking past the furnaces, admonishing his subordinates.
(TN: The Tang Dynasty divided its administration into three levels: the circuit, the province/prefecture, and the county.)
A messenger bird suddenly descended, drawing the supervisor's attention. Taking the letter from the bamboo tube, he glanced at it and immediately paled.
"Everyone, faster! Lady Xu has now sent a fourth letter asking us to hurry up. If we don't produce twenty steel boards today, none of you should think about sleeping!"
The supervisor snapped his whip in the air. After making a few more rounds of the sword shop, he strode out.
After leaving the sword shop, he walked to the main gate. Two stone lions stood sentinel there, and in front of the lions, rows of carriages were parked, apparently waiting for something.
The supervisor rushed up to the team leader seated on the first carriage and asked, "Have all the modules been loaded?"
"They're all loaded. We can leave at any time," the middle-aged and aloof leader sternly said.
A few months ago, no one would have known what this 'module' was or what it meant. Now, however, everyone related to forging and smithing in the Jiangnan West Circuit knew of it and commonly used it.
There was probably no sword shop, sword smith, or sword-smithing clan that didn't know of the word.
"Okay, then set off. We definitely don't want to cause any delay to the Young Marquis. If something happens, we won't be able to take the consequences," the supervisor grimly said. "We rarely get such big customers, and the clan is regarding this matter with utmost importance. We can't allow any mistakes."
"Steward, be at ease. The clan has already dispatched sixty good people. There won't be a problem."
The stern team leader quickly gave the order to set off. "Hyah!" With a shout and the crack of a whip, the convoy rumbled off.
The cries of horses echoed through the sky. As the convoy from the Zhang Clan set off, others quickly followed. If one looked down from the sky, one would see that all of Hong Province was sending numerous convoys of steel for Wang Chong.
If one looked across the Jiangnan West Circuit, across all the provinces and prefectures of the Great Tang, there were countless convoys like the one from the Zhang Clan, gathering together into a mighty flood and flowing along the Silk Road toward the distant Wushang.
Like a massive and slow-moving machine, each of Wang Chong's plans had the countless great clans and provinces of the Great Tang transporting 'blood' to him, supporting him.
Yang Hongchang was much more efficient than expected. At dawn, only a few days after Wang Chong had given the order, when everyone was still sleeping, a convoy arrived with two tightly-sealed chests and a group of guards.
In a sumptuously decorated building of flying eaves within the City of Steel, the old steward bowed and sincerely said, "Lord Marquis, we did not fail you. According to Lord Marquis's instructions, we have acquired a few chests of roseroot. Our patriarch has said that Lord Marquis must have a deeper meaning behind his actions, so only Lord Marquis can identify whether this is the roseroot being sought. Once Lord Marquis has confirmed, we can begin to buy them on a large scale and transport them."
Wang Chong was dressed in leisure clothes. He remained seated, saying nothing and only waving his hand. To the side, a muscular warrior of the City of Steel strode over and thrust his sword into the chink under the lid. With a heave, the chest was opened, revealing countless little red flowers densely packed within.
1.'Everything else is ready; the only thing lacking is the east wind' is a quote from 'Romance of the Three Kingdoms', said by Zhuge Liang to Zhou Yu in their discussion on the upcoming Battle of Red Cliffs. Having made ready to attack Cao Cao's fleet with fire, Zhou Yu has realized that the only thing lacking for his plan to succeed is that the east wind must blow. The quote nowadays is used to mean that a plan is only lacking one crucial thing to be complete.