Qianye’s return to Blackflow was fairly peaceful. The occasional combat unit he met along the way would cautiously keep its distance from him after seeing the expeditionary army insignia.
It would seem that the county capital where all kinds of nobility had gathered was the true place of chaos within this region.
Qianye distributed the guns and armaments soon after arriving at Darkflame Headquarters. All high-ranking officers received a set of new gear, greatly increasing their survivability in battle.
He had just finished taking inventory and storing the remaining resources when he received news of the Ningyuan Group caravan’s arrival. Qianye immediately hurried over to check on the situation since the motorcade was of extraordinary value.
The caravan was comprised of dozens of heavy trucks, a scale even somewhat larger than what Qianye had previously anticipated. Duan Hao was currently instructing the workers to move the crates down. These crates were fairly heavy and required fighter level officers to help out in order to unload them safely. There was actually a specialized crane truck in the motorcade for the transfer and assembly of large kinetic tower components.
Although the one being transported this time was only a small kinetic tower, the core boiler alone had taken up the entire cargo truck’s capacity. The larger kinetic towers could no longer be transported by trucks. They would instead have to depend on medium to large cargo airships.
Apart from the components of the kinetic tower, the remainder were all uniform crates.
Qianye arrived beside the crates and knocked on one of them. “What’s inside? Open it up. Let’s see.”
“This is good stuff!” Duan Hao grinned. He personally tore the cover off from one of the crates to reveal several dark-green steel plates within.
Qianye retrieved one of the rectangular steel plates and found that they were mostly one square meter in area and two fingers thick. However, they were unexpectedly quite light in the hand—apparently, the interior structure was either hollow or honeycomb. There were ports on each side of the steel plate seemingly for joining them together.
“Modular Stronghold Plate Armor. Goddamit, I had to memorize it for ten or so times before I managed to remember it. Reportedly, these goods are of the latest design—one can connect them together to immediately set up a defensive structure, even in the wilderness. In sufficient numbers, even building a city isn’t a problem.”
Qianye quickly understood the logic behind it and was immediately jubilated. A dozen-odd trucks fully loaded with such plate armor modules was enough to build a defensive structure capable of housing a reinforced regiment. Additionally, they could also construct temporary defensive structures atop the city walls by linking them together. With this batch of plate armor, Blackflow City’s defenses were now even more solid.
“Well done! This is yours.” Qianye was in a great mood as he produced a grade-five origin gun and tossed it to Duan Hao.
Duan Hao gave it a once over after catching the weapon and was greatly astonished. “T-This is a grade-five gun?”
“I only ran a few errands. How can I accept such a valuable gift?”
Qianye patted Duan Hao’s shoulder with a smile. “This is an advance payment. Your mission is to hold the city and survive. It’ll be yours once the bloody battle is over.”
Holding the gun case with both hands, even a forthright man like Duan Hao was at a temporary loss for words.
Qianye said, “Zining handed you over to me. Apparently, he’s very pleased and confident about you. I also feel the same. So my true demand from you is only this one thing. You must survive until the battle ends. There are more units that need your leadership in the future.”
Qianye only smiled before he turned to leave.
After returning to his residence, Qianye inspected the items in his backpack and Andruil’s Mysterious Realm, listing out the supplies he needed to replenish for his next battle.
He spied that count-grade spider egg and couldn’t help but recall a certain matter. Qianye had inadvertently touched it with his injured hand while stowing away the spoils of war after his fight with Viscount Porter. At that time, he discovered that the egg could actually absorb his blood energy, followed by an evident increase in its vitality and survival time. He tested out the other spider eggs and found that they weren’t capable of this.
Qianye was already feeling that he had too many contribution points, so he didn’t present the count-grade egg. In any case, such an item had no lack of outflow channels—it was sure to be a hot-sale even in the upper-continent auction houses.
He pondered for a moment then once again spread out paper and pen to write a letter to Song Zining, asking him for the best way to deal with the spider egg. Afterward, he planned to cultivate for a couple of days and adjust himself to his peak condition before heading out into battle once again.
Time flowed out gradually and so did the bloody battle continue. The rankings at the expeditionary army headquarters were changing constantly, but the pattern had gradually stabilized.
The imperial family and the four major clans displayed their powerful foundations—their rankings climbed at a steady pace and stood within the top-ten all along. Moreover, they gradually distanced themselves from those ranked behind them. There were also five or six high-ranking aristocratic families who managed to stay hot on their trails, revealing the capacity of their clans for the first time and raising numerous eyebrows.
But behind the gradually climbing contribution numbers on the rankings, the casualty numbers were climbing at an equally swift pace.
After two days of rest, Qianye once again headed out into battle on his own. His luck this time wasn’t as good as the last. After half a month of hunting, he only managed to kill two viscounts and dozens of cannon fodder. In the end, he even came close to falling into a trap laid down by a dark race hunting expedition. He fought several arduous battles before he finally managed to break through the siege and return to Blackflow City.
At this moment, Qianye, full of bloodstains and injuries, was riding a worn-out motorcycle which he had seized on the way. It was at this time that a series of cannon shots suddenly rang out from within Blackflow City—it was the sound of a gun salute. The seven shots indicated that a rather important person had passed away.
Qianye asked the soldier on gate duty, “What’s going on?”
The Darkflame soldier said with a sigh, “It should be Viscount Du Fangjue’s funeral. Reportedly, his combat squad encountered a powerful dark race hunting party and was completely wiped out. Only one person managed to escape.”
Qianye nodded with an inexplicably heavy heart. The cruelty of the bloody battle was being revealed little by little.
After returning to Darkflame headquarters and treating his injuries, Qianye received two unexpected visitors. One of them was Li Pei whom he had met the other day, accompanied by a middle-aged man who projected natural dignity and power. His aura was as grave as it was profound—he, quite shockingly, was a count-level expert.
Immediately after seeing Qianye, Li Pei greeted him with great enthusiasm. “Sire Qianye, this little brother was wracked with shame after the incident that day. Hence, after finding out your whereabouts with great difficulty, I was determined to pay you a formal visit.”
With that, he introduced the middle-aged man beside him. “This is my clan-uncle Li Duanhe.”
Qianye greeted them and couldn’t help but observe Li Duanhe a couple of times. “Your esteemed uncle possesses such a high cultivation. Will it be fine?” Under Qianye’s Eye of Truth, Li Duanhe had four origin power vortices in his body and was already a rank-thirteen champion. This was already above the accepted safety standards.
Li Duanhe was finally moved. “Sire Qianye’s perception is akin to a torch. It is truly astonishing. But there’s no need to worry about me. Even if I do use my rank-thirteen origin power, it will only be for a blink of an eye as long as I utilize thunderous methods. Sky Demon must be busy dealing with the top characters from the two factions at this moment. How will he have the time to deal with such small matters?”
Qianye nodded and no longer said anything else. He knew nothing about the Green Sky Li Family of the Transcendent Continent. Naturally, he wouldn’t go too deep into their matters.
Li Pei said with cupped hands, “I was greatly inspired after seeing how Sire Qianye developed Blackflow City’s impregnable defenses and have decided to move our squad’s base of operations here. I’ll probably be bothering you in the future.”
Qianye replied with a smile, “Young Noble Li is too polite.”
Li Pei clearly wished to befriend Qianye, and it was also quite beneficial to Blackflow City if he were to move his squad’s base of operations here. They chatted briefly for a moment before Li Pei excused himself.
Qianye saw the Li family uncle and nephew out of the office building and watched them leave the Darkflame camp. Li Pei was clearly full of mettle after his recent catch, and it looked as if he would go hunting again before long.
However, there was a faint, lingering shadow in Qianye’s heart. These warrior squads who had arrived from all directions were entering the wilderness one after another—just how many of them would return safe and sound?
The bloody battle was different from ordinary battles. There was no telling what one would encounter at the next moment. All tactics and strategies were rendered useless, and only absolutely strength held the greatest significance.
Qianye once again entered isolation during the three days that followed in order to refine the essence blood he had absorbed during his previous excursion. At the same time, he had Nangong Xiaoniao construct a simple cultivation array with which he converted the black crystals he had obtained from the military contributions to aid in his cultivation.
This cultivation array was rather special. Qianye had Nangong Xiaoniao exclude the origin power conversion components, causing the power drawn out from the black crystals to be mostly darkness origin power. No matter how precise the human cultivation arrays, there was always over fifty percent loss in power during the conversion. But it just so happened that Qianye was lacking even more darkness origin power compared to daybreak. Naturally, he wasn’t willing to allow so much waste.
Nangong Xiaoniao was naturally quite puzzled about such an array, but she was very clever and asked not a single question about it.
Three days passed by in a flash, and Qianye had almost used up all of the black crystals he had obtained from the military contributions. It was once again time to go into battle.
Qianye received Song Zining’s reply as he exited isolation. The letter claimed that the arachne egg was extremely useful, and he would soon dispatch someone to fetch it. Additionally, Song Zining also mentioned that a merchant caravan would soon set out toward Blackflow City, and its scale was even bigger than the previous one. However, he made no mention of what it was transporting and only said that Qianye would know when the time came.
Qianye was somewhat suspicious because Blackflow City wasn’t lacking in anything at the moment. This was especially true after he decided to temporarily relocate the stronghold materials for Silverflow Fjord for city defenses—Blackflow City’s fortifications were as solid as a native imperial city. What else would they need?
But Song Zining had never done meaningless things. Since he was keeping Qianye in suspense, then he must have his own thoughts about this matter. Qianye put away the letter, packed up his luggage, and left Blackflow City once again for his third round of hunting.
Far in the distance at this moment, Song Zining was sitting in his study drawing and writing repeatedly on paper. He had been editing contents of this paper from morning to evening—even delaying lunch in the process—before it was considered done.
Song Zining stood up and gazed outside the window just in time to see the setting sun. The lofty firmament clear of wind and clouds was precisely a rare occasion of good weather. This place, compared to the Iron Curtain, was like contrasting the heaven and earth. Song Zining simply sauntered out of the room and headed toward the garden.
Not long before he had left, there was a light knock as Ye Mulan called out from outside the door, “Zining, your tea is ready.”
Receiving no reply, she pushed open the study door lightly.
The door was unlocked and opened with a single push. Ye Mulan walked into the room and was startled after finding no one within. Suddenly, her heart stirred as she caught a glimpse of the papers on the table—she quietly walked over and started examining them.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Oh no! What did Ye Mulan see? Speaking of Ye Mulan, I really can't wait to see the upcoming Mulan movie. Liu Yifei played many of my favorite childhood wuxia crushes haha :D
I'll change that title back at night :P
TL: Legion ED: Moxie
Teaser Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/matijagrguric/6378905947