Chapter 783 – First Appearance On The Destiny Decree
There were a total of 360 Life Destruction powerhouses ranked on the Destiny Decree. Those that could make the list on the Density Decree all had a certain degree of hope that they would one day reach the Divine Sea. Thus, most of those on the Destiny Decree were devoted cultivators and spent the majority of their life closed up in seclusion, rarely seen in public.
Many major forces hoped to win over a few Destiny Decree masters to act as foreign patrons that could assist them. However, besides a few top national level forces, even the countless organizations as wealthy as the Heavencraft Trading Company could not ever hope to win over one.
Each Divine Kingdom only had a few dozen Destiny Decree powerhouses at their disposal. Moreover, for someone at their boundary, their main pursuit in life had become breaking through to the Divine Sea realm. Besides training and seeking out lucky breaks, they simply didn’t care for dueling others. As for the struggles of wealth and power in the world, those were even more boring and worthless in their eyes.
The only reason some Destiny Decree powerhouses were even willing to join top national influences was because of the vast amounts of resources that these organizations could provide.
Because of how influential the Destiny Decree was, every major player in the world paid close attention to this list. Through this list, they could understand an approximate situation of the powerhouses in the Four Divine Kingdoms, and at least understand the strength they showed to the public.
The entire Destiny Decree was written in paper and then bound into a book. Every Life Destruction powerhouse occupied their own page, and thus every single issue of the Destiny Decree had 360 pages; no more, no less.
Within these 360 pages, some characters that were currently attracting attention would be written in the Decree using red ink.
At this time, the one who was written down in red ink was Lin Ming.
The 320th page had a name that was written down with large, blood red characters.
The back of that page introduced a variety of information, including Lin Ming’s fighting style; his moves, weapons, and current accomplishments.
“Lin Lanjian: Weapon – Spear. Killed the ranked 330th ranked Destiny Decree master, Corpsemancer. Cultivation at the late Revolving Core realm. An eternally rare talent.”
The Destiny Decree was generous with its praise. This ranking list had already existed for several thousand years, and there had been far too many geniuses recorded in its pages. Many of them had even gone on to become Peerless Emperors. However, to enter the Destiny Decree at just the Revolving Core realm, Lin Ming was actually the first person to accomplish this in all these millennia.
Just this point alone was enough to stir up a storm.
A massive number of Witch Creek City’s martial artists rushed over to Heavencraft Trading Company for a visit. For a time, the entire Heavencraft Trading Company was packed to the brim with business.
Many of them wished to inquire about the news, and to also meet Lin Ming. There were also some representatives from major forces that wished to win over Lin Ming. If even this was impossible, then testing the waters didn’t do any harm.
In turn, this caused the recently struggling Heavencraft Trading Company to be booming with business. This was truly a serendipitous accident. At this time, Xiaoxiao no longer needed to accept the ruling of the family, and had more or less won the struggle for the position of Family Head in advance.
At this time within the Heavencraft Family, Xiaoxiao’s two great uncles were looking at the scarlet letters emblazoned on the Destiny Decree. It was as if the letters had been written in fresh, glistening red blood.
Corpsemancer had died!
Furthermore, he had been killed by Lin Ming!
“How could this be…” Heavencraft Xiao muttered to himself, unable to believe that this was true.
“Big Brother, what do we do?” The sudden change in the current situation had rendered Heavencraft Yun listless. He would have absolutely never imagined that the random, young boy that Xiaoxiao drew in from somewhere had actually managed to kill the Destiny Decree ranked Corpsemancer.
“What can we do!?” Heavencraft Xiao harshly exhaled in a panic. However, he was also at a loss at the time. Paper could not wrap up fire; the truth would eventually come out. They couldn’t depend on finding asylum in their family by arguing they had nothing to do with Corpsemancer.
They were in the wrong to begin with to involve that Corpsemancer. If Xiaoxiao had been killed then everything would have been fine. However, now that Corpsemancer had died, this would cause all the anger to be directed at them. Since Xiaoxiao also now had Lin Ming’s support, she was in an invincible position. It would be impossible to find another Destiny Decree master that could contend with Lin Ming in a short period of time.
As for the Crown Prince, Heavencraft Xiao had no expectations that he would help. The Heavencraft Trading Company was only a potential boost to the Crown Prince, and now that things had come to this, the result was already foreseeable. There was no way that the Nine Furnace Crown Prince would be willing to link himself with some dastardly villain like Corpsemancer.
“We can only take advantage of this time while Lin Lanjian is recuperating from his injuries to immediately leave through the secret transmission array to look for that sir. The changes within the Heavencraft Trading Company have already gone beyond our control; there is nowhere else we can go.” Heavencraft Xiao painfully sighed. He no longer had any other choice.
Once they made this decision, the two of them fled from the Heavencraft Family under the cover of night. In a family like the Heavencraft Family, they naturally had a special transmission array specifically used for escaping. If they left through this transmission array they wouldn’t need to be afraid that Lin Ming would chase them down and kill them.
They no longer entertained the hopes of becoming the Heavencraft Family Head.
At this time, at the Nine Furnace Divine Kingdom’s Phoenix City, a young man wearing a five-clawed dragon royal robe was flipping through the new issue of the Destiny Decree, a thoughtful expression on his face.
“Crown Prince!” A man wearing a green mask appeared in the great hall, respectfully bowing to the young man.
This young man was the Nine Furnace Divine Kingdom’s Crown Prince. He was in his forties, but appeared as if he were in his twenties. This wasn’t because he consumed a part of his cultivation to restore his youthful appearance, but because he had stepped into Life Destruction at a mere 30 years of age. After his physical body had been transformed and reborn, his appearance maintained the look of himself in his twenties, something that wouldn’t change for thousands of years to come.
Even men were pretty willing to maintain their youthful looks for as long as possible. However, if they were stranded in the Revolving Core realm until their thirties and forties, there would still be a few traces of their age left on their faces, giving off the feel that they were middle-aged in appearance.
If one wanted to keep the vivid vibrancy of youth, one would have to step into the Life Destruction realm at around 30 years of age. However, this sort of person would be a monstrous genius of their era. Without accident, they would inevitably step into the Divine Sea, and would even grow to become an astounding character amongst all Divine Sea powerhouses.
“Fleeting Dragon, what’s the matter?” The Nine Furnace Crown Prince quietly said as he closed the Destiny Decree.
“Reporting to Your Highness, the two chess pieces that your subordinate has arranged in the Heavencraft Family have arrived at the Royal Palace overnight. They wish to seek an audience with the Crown Prince. Does Your Highness wish to grant them a meeting?”
To the green masked man, Heavencraft Xiao and Heavencraft Yun were both unimportant characters that didn’t have the qualifications to seek an audience with the Crown Prince. It was only the fact that Lin Lanjian had killed Corpsemancer that would pique the Crown Prince’s interest, and then submit this report.
Indeed, the Nine Furnace Crown Prince nodded and said, “Let them see me. In addition, Fleeting Dragon, I had you investigate the three great trading companies, the two great banks, and the Hundred Treasure Auction House. How have you done so far?”
“Reporting to Your Highness, the Nine Furnace Guard is currently secretly investigating these groups. There aren’t any major omissions with the two great banks and the Hundred Treasure Auction House, but the three great trading companies all have a few existing problems.”
“Oh? What about the Heavencraft Trading Company?” The Nine Furnace Crown Prince nodded with satisfaction, a smile touching his face.
“We’ve already obtained precise evidence on the Heavencraft Trading Company. The Heavencraft Trading Company’s previous head and the one before him had all made transactions in violation of the Divine Kingdom’s laws. There were even some secret transactions done with the Asura Divine Kingdom that we can use to charge them with colluding with an enemy power!”
The green masked man indifferently said. He was the chief commander of the Nine Furnace Guard.
The so-called Nine Furnace Guard was a military faction under the direct control of the Divine Kingdom. They governed the nation’s prisons and held great power in all other aspects.
Their power and influence were terrifying, and they even had five Destiny Decree masters in their ranks. This green masked man was one of them, and also the strongest amongst them. His code name was Fleeting Dragon.
All of the members of the Nine Furnace Guard wore embroidered robes and green masks. These masks were not for decoration, and were actually tools carved from wood spirit jade. Wood spirit jade had the special characteristic of isolating all external perception. Even a Divine Sea powerhouse could not pierce his perception even half of an inch into the wood spirit jade. Thus, as long as they wore these masks, then no one would ever be able to see the true expression of the Nine Furnace Guard martial artists.
The entire Nine Furnace Guard had a total of 9000 individuals, and their combat strength was just as fearful. They were under the direct jurisdiction of the Nine Furnace Crown Prince and could be considered as his right hand.
“Excellent. Organize all the evidence as soon as possible and bring it to me.” The Nine Furnace Crown Prince said with a smile. Although this was a secret investigation, the truth was that the investigation had already been carried out for an entire two years thus far.
As Fleeting Dragon heard this, he was secretly startled. He didn’t know just what the Crown Prince was plotting, but the three great trading companies, the two great banks, and the Hundred Treasure Auction House summed up to be a total of six major commercial organizations. They grasped nearly 10% of the entire Nine Furnace Divine Kingdom’s economy.
Was the Crown Prince really preparing to swallow them all up?
It had to be known that, for a trading company to develop to such a massive scale, it was impossible for them to wipe their asses clean of all the dirty deeds they committed. As long as one had the mind and resources to search, they absolutely could find some problems. In fact, this was a matter that everyone was aware of.
Even so, all of the previous Divine Emperors of the four Divine Kingdoms tacitly consented to the existence of the economic oligarchy, because they could help manage the country and create wealth for all. Moreover, over one-third of their profits were collected into the Divine Kingdom’s treasury.
If one wished to annex these economic organizations then it would be possible with the absolute suppressive strength of the Nine Furnace Divine Kingdom’s state power. If one didn’t care for public opinion, then this was a simple matter. But, this had already been tested by another Divine Kingdom once, and the truth had proved differently. After the great economic organizations were also taken under national country, it was easy for corruption to grow in management. This then led to a decline in efficiency and profit, eventually leading these organizations to close down in several years. This was simply not a wise move.
The state machine was mostly able to grasp spirit essence stone mines, wood spirit jade sites, and other similarly simple resource-based industries. It was difficult to become involved in anything else.
If a normal Prince were to have these sort of thoughts then Fleeting Dragon would have thought that he had delusions of grandeur and had become completely incompetent.
But now, the one making this decision was the Nine Furnace Crown Prince. Fleeting Dragon was well aware of just how great the Nine Furnace Crown prince’s hidden strength was; he certainly wasn’t an idiot that would make such an addled decision. Then, just what was he planning on doing? Was he really preparing to annex these six great economic organizations? That would definitely cause some level of turmoil in the Divine Kingdom.
Fleeting Dragon imagined all these things but he didn’t question his orders. As the chief commander of the Nine Furnace Guard, his only duty was to obey orders.
Three days later, Heavencraft Trading Company –
“Mm? An invitation to the Nine Furnace Divine Kingdom’s Divine Palace?”
At the Heavencraft Trading Company, Lin Ming had received a jade slip made from wood spirit jade. It was marked with an invitation to the Nine Furnace Divine Kingdom’s Royal Palace. Additionally, the one who sent this invitation was surprisingly the Nine Furnace Crown Prince!”
“The Nine Furnace Crown Prince wishes for me to come to the Divine Palace as a guest and also bring Heavencraft Xiaoxiao?” Lin Ming frowned as he repeated the message on the jade slip.
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