Chapter 1294: The Imperial Palace

However, following the passage of so many years and with the new responsibilities that had been placed on his shoulders, those comparatively trivial matters no longer mattered to Tang Wulin.

Long Yue was once his rival and target, but now, his target was truly the heavens. Up above in the heavens, his birth parents were still waiting for him to go and find them.

He had to become a Limit Douluo as soon as possible. Only by breaking through his limits could he gain access to the coordinates that would be required to find them.

The survival of his foster parents was all but assured, but at the same time, his connection with his birth parents had also been severed. However, as long as there was still hope, he would never give up.

The pilot room of the black mecha opened, and Long Yuxue jumped down in a graceful manner before striding over to Tang Wulin. Back when Tang Wulin had sought her out in the morning to prepare this experiment, she already knew that he was preparing to bluff Dai Yueyan, and from the looks of it, his plan had worked quite well. Then again, the heavy ion laser gun truly was a formidable weapon that had even managed to severely wound the likes of Bear Lord.

Tang Wulin smiled, and said, "Thanks for your hard work."

Long Yuxue replied, "I'm glad to be of assistance."

Peculiar looks appeared on the faces of Shrek's Six Monsters upon hearing their exchange. Long Yuexue definitely wasn't the first woman after Gu Yuena to have fallen in love with Tang Wulin, and she most likely wasn't going to be the last one. Unfortunately for everyone else, Tang Wulin simply wasn't the promiscuous type, and they could only take pity on Long Yuxue.

"Go back and have a good rest, everyone. We're going to be meeting the emperor of the Star Luo Empire tomorrow, and that will be the most important part of our journey, so we have to make ample preparations."

The Star Luo Empire revered power above all else, so everyone was naturally aware of what Tang Wulin meant when he told them to make preparations. After staying on a submarine for so long, they were bored out of their minds, and the prospect of a battle was making them very excited.

"Sect Master, allow me to introduce to you the current situation and some of the important members of our Tang Sect; I'm sure that information will be helpful to your negotiations. I think there's a very good chance that the negotiation will go smoothly, so we need to prepare some other things in advance."

Tang Wulin nodded in response. "If a war really does break out, then the Star Luo Empire will be the key. If the federation attacks the Dou Spirit Empire first, then the Star Luo Empire must provide them with reinforcements right away. If the Star Luo Empire is attacked first, then it must withstand the invasion, and in the best-case scenario, intimidate the federal army to the point of retreat. It is indeed time to make some preparations. Aside from the weapons that we brought along with us, our Tang Sect has also brought them some resources that they can use when required."

"Of course. Please come with me, Sect Master." 

......

The next day.

The previous day had been quite hectic, and Tang Wulin had only returned to his room late at night, but after a night's rest, he was fully reinvigorated.

After taking a shower, he put on an antiquated robe that represented his identity as the Tang Sect Master, and he prepared himself for the most important part of this trip.

The Blood Dragon Squad stayed behind, and aside from the personnel from the Tang Sect, Tang Wulin was accompanied by only Shrek's Six Monsters, as well as Sima Jinchi and A'Ruheng.

With Sima Jinchi by his side, Tang Wulin would be able to unleash even greater power through their soul fusion skill.

The Tang Sect motorcade drove out of the headquarters, their privileges were immediately made very apparent as there was not a single vehicle on the wide roads. Furthermore, there were soldiers standing on either side of the road to ensure a smooth journey.

All of the Tang Sect vehicles were custom made, and Tang Wulin was seated with his eyes closed in the second car with Hu Jie.

This was going to be a very important step to deciding whether war would descend upon this continent.

The imperial palace was very heavily guarded, and all of the cars were stopped after reaching the entrance of the palace. From there onward, they would have to continue on foot. Dai Yueyan and some other members of the imperial family were waiting for them. The emperor himself naturally wasn't among them. After all, Tang Wulin was only the Tang Sect Master, so there was still quite a disparity between him and the ruler of an entire empire.

The fact that the rightful heir to the throne had come out to welcome him in person was already an honor of the highest order. For some reason, Tang Wulin couldn't help but feel that Dai Yueyan was looking at him in a rather peculiar manner.

"Your Highness," Tang Wulin greeted with a nod.

The smile on Dai Yueyan's face widened even further, and he said in a very hospitable manner, "Please come with me, Sect Master Tang." 

Tang Wulin was rather taken aback by Dai Yueyan's rather excessively benign demeanor. Ever since he had first met Dai Yueyan, this was the first time that he had been so amiable toward him.

Of course, this was a good start.

The two of them strode side by side, while everyone else trailed along behind them, and even the Smiling Douluo made sure to follow along half a step behind the duo.

Dai Yueyan asked, "Sect Master Tang, what do you think of our Star Luo Empire?"

Tang Wulin replied, "I think it's a very good place! The Star Luo Empire focuses more on the development of Soul Masters and individual power, which prompts many Soul Masters to work harder in their cultivation. Furthermore, I can see many aspects of traditional culture here that have already disappeared from the federation, and I'm a big fan of that."

Dai Yueyan nodded in response. "Indeed, there are many things in the Douluo Federation that only came after the continental clash."

The Douluo Continent hadn't always been as large as it was now; it was only after two continents had collided due to continental shift that the current Douluo Continent had come into existence.

At the time, the other continent had been known as the Sun Moon Continent. The Sun Moon Continent had plentiful resources, but far fewer Soul Masters. However, they were very advanced in soul technology, and the merging of the two continents had brought a revolution to the Douluo Continent.

Regardless of whether it was the Star Luo Continent or the current Dou Spirit Continent, they were inhabited solely by the natives of the Douluo Continent, whereas the Douluo Federation was a melting pot of many groups of people, including Douluo Continent natives and people from the Sun Moon Continent.

The Star Luo Empire and Dou Spirit Empire had opposed the people of the Sun Moon Continent precisely due to their racial differences, and that was why the Star Luo Empire had moved to the Star Luo Continent in the end.

Over 10,000 years ago, Soul Masters had been the most revered beings on the Douluo Continent, but with the advancements in technology since then, Soul Engineers and mecha pilots had slowly taken the ascendency.

It was undeniable that the inventions of mechas and soul tools had allowed normal people to attain previously unachievable levels of destructive power, but it was also exactly because of this Soul Masters were no longer as revered as before. Hence, the total number of Soul Masters, particularly high-grade ones, had constantly been decreasing in the Douluo Federation. [Huh, not sure that's particularly true considering Titled Douluos, Hyper Douluos, and Limit Douluo seem to be a lot more prevalent than in DD1 and DD2, but we'll roll with it, I guess.]

Only after becoming a Soul Sage could one be considered to be a high-grade Soul Master, and this required a long and arduous process of cultivation, as well as a high level of cultivation aptitude. In contrast, the process would be far faster if some talented Soul Masters were to become Soul Engineers and take some shortcuts to elevate their soul power, then became mecha masters. This process would at least be twice as fast as that of becoming a high-grade Soul Master, and there wouldn't be too much of a disparity between the combat prowess of the two.

Hence, the trend in the federation was one where Soul Engineers and soul technology were being developed as a priority. In doing so, they hoped to be able to conquer other habitable planets to find new homes for the human race.

Hence, even though the Spirit Pagoda held control over all soul spirits, the federal parliament didn't really pay that much heed. As technology continued to advance, the role that powerful Soul Masters played would continue to diminish.

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