Chapter 174: Forgetting Loyalty for Profits
The Scarlet Heart wasn’t a Demonic Emperor well-versed in Origin Formations. Actually, the entire Beast Race wasn’t very well-versed in formations at all. As beasts, the Demonic Beasts might have intelligence, but their creativity was far inferior to that of the human race, and even to the other Intelligent Races.
And Origin Formations were an expression of creativity.
This was why, even though there were Origin Formations beneath the treasures, even someone like Su Chen who wasn’t particularly well-versed in Origin Formations was able to easily neutralize them.
After casually taking away all of the treasures in the inner section, Su Chen returned to the outer storehouse.
Everyone was still excitedly picking up treasures.
Even though the treasures in the outer storehouse weren’t as valuable, there were many more of them. There were seven Demonic King level Origin Crystals, and they were all in pristine condition.
“Blood Rain’s Heart, Bristle Demon’s Tooth, Deep Sea Prison Robe, Plunder Fog...... Heavens, there’s so many good things here! I’m about to go crazy!” Even though Su Chen had warned them about raising their voices multiple times, He Xu still couldn’t repress his excitement as he yelled.
Tens of thousands of people would be willing to fight over just one of the items he had listed off, but He Xu was naming them like they were common fruits in a supermarket waiting to be bought. This kind of experience was so wonderful that it was hard to describe. Even if they didn’t belong to him, he still felt giddy with joy.
Su Chen began to neutralize the Origin Formations underneath the few remaining items in the outer storehouse, then took them all.
The treasures in the outer storehouse that were protected by Origin Formations were also top-tier treasures.
Battle Intent Spirit, Terror Nightmare, Amethyst Fragrance Grass, Nightmare Bone, etc. — all of these items and more were taken by Su Chen and put into his pouch.
The storeroom was quickly cleaned out. As Su Chen put away the final pouch of Heartbroken Demon Bone Meal, he said, “Alright, hand over what you’ve found. You all can choose three to keep, while Old Shi can choose six.”
However, he didn’t get the response he was expecting.
Su Chen was taken aback. He turned around and saw He Xu staring intently at him.
“What?” Su Chen asked.
He Xu gulped. “Su Chen, you’ve managed to save up quite a bit for yourself. All of the precious treasures in the inner storehouse were taken by you. Only leaving three items of the outer storehouse for us...... Isn’t that a bit too little?”
Su Chen squinted his eyes. “You mean......”
He Xu raised the Origin Ring in his hand. “Why not leave the things in the outer storehouse to the person who took them? The white paper doll is your subordinate, so his portion can count as yours. The rest of us will split the remaining items. What do you think?"
Su Chen didn't reply. Instead, he glanced at Shi Mingfeng and Night Demon.
Shi Mingfeng frowned and didn't say anything. It was obvious that he was not the one who had come up with this idea, but He Xu's suggestion had managed to truly move him. Since He Xu had jumped out to ask for a bit more, he wasn't against waiting and hearing what Su Chen had to say.
Night Demon, on the other hand, was entranced by the Blue Maple Crystal as she bit her fingernail, trying to decide what other two treasures she should take. She hadn’t even registered what He Xu had said.
Su Chen understood. He chuckled and said, "What if I say no? What would you do?"
He Xu didn't answer directly. Instead, he looked at Shi Mingfeng. "Old Shi, this is a huge haul here. I believe that you will support me, right?"
Shi Mingfeng thought for a moment, then replied, "Su Chen, witnesses should get a portion. At the very least, we did participate in this expedition. Giving out a little more wouldn't be too much. But as for how much extra to give, we can discuss that."
Shi Mingfeng was quite slippery. He didn't offend Su Chen, but he also didn't oppose He Xu's suggestions.
"Then hand it over for now. We can discuss things later." Su Chen reached out with his hand.
He Xu withdrew the Origin Ring again. "I think it'd be better if we were to figure things out now."
"What if I insist on you handing them over now?" Su Chen asked.
He Xu chuckled. "Su Chen, I know that I'm not your opponent, but if Old Shi doesn't personally make a move, I think I can withstand at least a few blows without any problems. And if we can't even talk too loudly in this storehouse, then starting a fight might perhaps......"
Su Chen squinted. "So that's where your boldness is coming from? You believe I wouldn’t dare attack you for fear of startling the guard dog at the front door?"
"Do you dare?" He Xu countered.
Su Chen didn't reply. He just stared at He Xu.
After a long time.
Su Chen finally spoke. "When we were in West Laina Castle, you were the first to infiltrate the castle and was discovered by Sark. At that point in time, everyone else was ready to give up on you. I was the one who went in and saved your life.”
“Yes, that’s true!” He Xu nodded. “But while you were fighting Sark, it was I who appeared, wounded Sark, and saved your life. Am I wrong? So I don’t owe you my life anymore.”
Su Chen nodded. “Indeed, all ungrateful people will find ways to rationalize their actions. I’m not surprised by this.”
He Xu’s expression contorted. “Ungrateful? You haven’t mentioned that you obtained a bloodline power from my blood and developed a disguise technique from it! You haven’t even mentioned that you took the ability of my Bloodriver Clan and used it to strengthen yourself and even gave it away to others! I treated you as a friend, which was why I came all the way here with Night Demon and Old Shi to do business with you. But what happened? You used us to enter the Demonic Emperor’s Palace, obtained all the benefits, then threw us a few treasures as if to dismiss us beggars. Do you think that this is what a friend would do?”
Su Chen shook his head slightly. “I don’t want to debate about all these things. Even though I could argue that, without me, your blood would be totally useless, that I had been planning on infiltrating the Demonic Emperor’s palace long before you guys came, and that I could have done all these things on my own, I won’t fuss over all that. Right now, the crux of the matter is that you don’t think that I would make a move against you, right?”
At this point in time, Night Demon had finally resolved her internal issue of deciding on her three treasures. She was about to ask what was going on when she saw Su Chen suddenly facing off against He Xu, but Shi Mingfeng quickly pulled her aside.
This was both to prevent Night Demon from trying to make peace and even more so to obtain a hostage for himself.
At this point in time, Shi Mingfeng was still vacillating on whose side he should take.
The Immortal Temple had been around for a long time. At this point, there were no more concerns about whether someone was a good or bad person; just whether or not they could produce profits.
To Shi Mingfeng, Su Chen was an investment with incredible potential and, on some level, a friend that he got along with quite well. However, that was all nothing in the face of treasures from a Demonic Emperor’s treasury. As such, if the circumstances favored it, he wasn’t against turning hostile.
There were many instances of situations like this happening. There was no reason why if it could happen to someone else, it couldn’t happen to Su Chen.
However, these betrayals would only be successful if one had control over the situation.
Shi Mingfeng understood what kind of character Su Chen was, so he wouldn’t be too quick to turn hostile.
Even if he was a Light Shaking Realm cultivator.
Forget Su Chen; even that white paper doll of his wasn’t easy to deal with.
Since He Xu was willing to jump out, that was the best case scenario. All he needed to do was carefully hold onto Night Demon.
That way, no matter who won or lost, his benefits wouldn’t be lost.
Yes, Shi Mingfeng’s plan was to hold Night Demon firmly in place and watch how the situation unfolded.
There was no such thing as loyalty among thieves here. All Shi Mingfeng was doing was weighing his options and seeing how much control either party had over the situation.
Shi Mingfeng had obviously decided to try and profit from their disagreement.
He Xu was still responding to Su Chen’s question. “Is that not the case? You also said that this place is guarded by a Demonic Lord. If we attract its attention, everyone will die!”
Su Chen sighed. “I understand now. So you thought that you could rely on this to pressure me and take away a fourth of the treasures in this treasury. Old Shi would also benefit, and with Night Demon in his hands, he isn’t afraid of me killing him after the matter. In any case, with all of these resources, you might even be able to reach the Spirit Burning Realm. At that point, you wouldn’t even be afraid to leave the Immortal Temple, so what use is there in caring about me, right? Friends? What are friends good for? Can you eat them? Am I right? Is that what you’re thinking, He Xu?”
“So what if that’s what I think? Have you never been sold out by someone before? Many people lose their friends for profits. Didn’t your clan give up on you before, because you lost your sight? If even family members prioritize profits over blood and relationships, how much importance should you place on our friendship? Also, I’m not asking for much. I just want one-fourth — that’s not extreme at all!” He Xu gritted his teeth and doubled down in his response.
Su Chen nodded. “You’re right. That’s not too extreme, but that’s also because you don’t have a choice. After all, with so many people here, you wouldn’t be able to swallow all the profits yourself. But as long as you’re willing to split the profits with everyone else, they will all support you.”
“I wouldn’t support……” Night Demon wanted to speak, but Shi Mingfeng placed his hand on her shoulder, and a wave of energy washed over her as her words were stuffed back down her throat.
Su Chen pretended not to hear anything and said, “You’ve thought about this quite thoroughly, but unfortunately you still made two mistakes in the end.”
“I don’t want to hear you explain these so-called mistakes. I just want you to make way and let me leave with this Origin Ring!” He Xu said impatiently. He had no interest in playing these games with Su Chen.
However, Su Chen wasn’t planning on letting him go that easily.
He said, “You’re better off listening to what I have to say. It’s impossible for me to agree with you, even if you try and threaten me with the Demonic Emperor’s palace defenses. If you think that I’m afraid of startling that old pangolin, you’ve made a huge mistake. I’m not afraid of that at all, because my original plan was to make a commotion anyways so that he would find out.”
“What did you say?” He Xu was stunned. Even Shi Mingfeng and Night Demon froze.
Let that old pangolin find out? Was that a joke?
“Really.” Su Chen nodded. “Did you forget about my reason for coming to the border in the first place?”
“Wasn’t it for resources?” He Xu asked, dazed.
A pitying expression appeared in Su Chen’s eyes. “Taking resources was just the means. Expanding the Beast Wave’s influence is the true objective!”
Shi Mingfeng’s expression drastically changed when he heard this.
He immediately realized that Su Chen wasn’t joking around.
Why had Su Chen come to the Beast Race’s territory? Actually, he had told Shi Mingfeng and He Xu before in the past, but neither of them had taken him very seriously.
However, Su Chen was very clear about his own motives.
From the very beginning, his goal had been to increase the intensity of the Beast Wave.
How could he intensify the Beast Wave?
By continuously provoking and angering them.
Stealing their resources was only a means to an end. From the very start, he had never prioritized taking resources, and the treasures he did pick up were merely byproducts of this goal, not the main goal.
Robbing the Demonic Emperor’s palace was for this purpose as well, around which Su Chen’s entire plan had centered.
If the Scarlet Heart, who was currently in deep in Ferocious Race territory, found out that its nest had been raided and that the treasures he had taken hundreds of years to obtain had all been snatched, what would he think? How enraged would he become?
Without question, the Beast Wave would intensify many times over. Regardless of whether it was to vent or to restore some of the losses it had sustained, the Scarlet Heart would not let this Beast Wave end so easily if it found out.
This way, the pressure on the Ferocious Race would multiply, and the pressure on the Heavenly Might Battalion would decrease.
If he wanted to do that, Su Chen could not possibly have planned on plundering this place silently — the old pangolin wouldn’t enter the storehouse without a good reason. In theory, as long as no additional treasures were scheduled to be placed inside, it was possible for the treasury theft to not be discovered until months later.
That wasn’t what Su Chen wanted.
As such, he would definitely be planning on making a noticeable commotion.
He Xu using this to threaten him was basically asking to die!
“Your second mistake is that...... actually, with your current strength, you might not be able to withstand a single blow of mine.” Su Chen had barely finished speaking his second sentence when suddenly…
He drew his blade.