Chapter 591: A Difficult Opening

Chapter 591: A Difficult Opening [V6C121 – Sorrow of a Silent Parting]

“That’s not the type of fate I want.” Zhang Boqian flicked the jade seal with a raise of his hand, causing it to fly up and land in Lin Xitang’s grasp.

“Boqian!”

“You’re in such a rush to consolidate power, as if you’re worrying there isn’t enough time. But even the war of national fate won’t last ten years. What exactly are you planning?”

Lin Xitang was startled.

Zhang Boqian didn’t wait for him to reply. “What you really want to control isn’t the imperial army but the void continent, right? But this time, I won’t let you have your way.” With that, he left in large strides.

Lin Xitang remained in place. Finally, there was a slight shift in his expression.

Over half an hour later, Zhang Boqian was back in his room, reading through the latest reports. He walked over to the map of the floating continent and pondered for a long while. Both the military and Zhang clan’s military intelligence proved that the empire’s situation on the void continent wasn’t looking great.

The Evernight council had reacted swiftly after taking a number of major losses at Giant’s Repose and poured in large forces. Meanwhile, the empire would need to do a lot of adjustments before they could muster more reinforcements.

A personal guard entered after knocking and delivered a metal box that had been sealed shut. “News from the Black Market.”

Zhang Boqian nodded in response and waited until the guard had left before tearing the box open. Inside was a translucent piece of circular crystal. Crystal media were commonly used by the dark races, but then again, forbidden life-prolonging arts were mostly from the Evernight faction.

Zhang Boqian instilled a wisp of void origin power into it. A drop of fresh blood slowly condensed upon the surface of the crystal and quickly transformed into a black flame—the blaze surprisingly contained the aura of the Sperger clan’s current lord. It was interesting how an unassuming reward he had instructed his men to post on the black market had actually received such a valuable response.

His brows trembled ever so slightly as he recalled the spiritual mending Habsburg had mentioned in the Eye of the Storm. It would seem he wasn’t speaking without prior thought. This vampire prince was probably not as low-key as he seemed on the surface. His antennae seemed to stretch quite far into human territory. What then were his intentions in revealing his strength?

The projection gradually vanished, and the crystal soon regained its lustrous clarity. Zhang Boqian pinched the crystal and instilled a drop of daybreak origin power into it. The crystal shattered to formed a prismatic bubble, and at the same time, a piece of hidden information shot out.

That was a consciousness from Prince Habsburg himself. “Lin Qianye is still alive.”

The void continent, tens of thousands of kilometers away. 

Qianye had no idea that he had become the focus of attention for those near and far. Gazing at the map of the void landmass and studying the latest battle situations, he was overcome by the feeling that the empire’s situation wasn’t great.

Desert Valley was adjacent to the dark race’s Crimson Fjord. Now they were amassing a large force in order to push the Bai clan out of Desert Valley for good and link their two warzones together.

The two zones were also connected to the Misty Wood, but Qianye wasn’t willing to explore the Crimson Fjord without concrete information on enemy activity. It would be bad if he were to run into an Evernight expert.

Qianye’s gaze fell upon an area to the west of the Crimson Fjord. There was a giant lake there, named Blacklight Lake by the empire. The body of water stretched hundreds of kilometers and was practically an inland sea. The area around it was the Blacklight warzone.

This Blacklight warzone was the Zhang clan’s garrison. Locations closer to the Crimson Fjord were naturally more dangerous. As the number one clan of the empire, the Zhang clan’s boldness was extraordinary. They immediately picked Blacklight warzone and proceeded to monitor the Evernight faction’s activities from there.

Although the Crimson Fjord was currently occupied by the Evernight faction, it was also included in the distribution of imperial warzones. The place was personally headed by the Imperial Court, a testament to its determination to take down the place.

The empire’s initial plan to force the dark races into a single warzone appeared optimistic overall. But the quick fall of Desert Valley allowed Qianye to realize that the war might even be more arduous than he had imagined.

Qianye operated in the Misty Wood during the several days that followed, killing three dark race scouting parties. But even adding all of that was merely equal to two barons—it could be said that his harvest was quite poor.

Half a month passed by with nothing much to do. Qianye decided to head back to the Li clan base to report in. On the other hand, he could also withdraw his salary and supplies.

The Li clan base had completely transformed when he arrived. The entire camp was now surrounded by a ten-meter wall with cannon turrets erected every hundred or so meters. The two giant towers behind the camp surprised Qianye even more. The Li clan had actually constructed two kinetic towers of the city-grade.

Now, this was a steep investment. It also proved their determination to claim this territory for the clan.

Qianye proved his identity at the gates and entered.

This base was built to accommodate five regular divisions, a total of 75,000 soldiers. It was more or less a small city. There were several areas in the base where the construction work was still ongoing. At a glance, however, the armories, defensive structures, vehicle plant, and airship port all seemed fairly lofty.

Qianye stopped beside a map erected near the main road and noticed that the entire base was well-organized and designed as a military fortress. He quietly memorized the locations of some open facilities before heading straight for the briefing tent at the side of the camp.

This was where the Li clan issued intelligence, missions, and rewards. Beside the briefing tent was the armory which had been stocked with mountains of resources. Most of the rewards could be withdrawn directly from this warehouse, but it went without saying that the most premium items weren’t stored here. Those would need to be shipped over from the main continent.

There were several large halls in front of the briefing tent, corresponding to different levels of experts. Qianye walked past the two tents for sub-champion level hunters and entered the third one.

This mission hall was much smaller than the other two, but the decoration was more lavish. There was a small bar at a corner of the tent, served by peerless beauties. The drinking men therein could hardly move their eyes away from those lightly swaying hips. From time to time, someone would stuff some coins into the ladies’ bosoms or grab them gently from behind.

Qianye only scanned the bar briefly before walking further into the hall. The place was separated into many small rooms which offered excellent privacy.

Qianye walked into one of the empty rooms. The decoration inside was simple and graceful. Behind the desk across from Qianye sat a female officer in the prime of her life, her customized uniform bringing out the best of her figure.

Her eyes lit up as Qianye entered. She stood up to lead Qianye to his seat and asked, “How can I be of service to you?”

Qianye placed his identity tablet on the table. “I’m Qianye, here to submit contributions and check for new intelligence.”

The officer’s eyes grew even brighter after seeing a general’s golden sword insignia. She stood up and fished out a small booklet from the shelf behind her. She then leaned toward Qianye and said in a gentle voice, “This is the latest battle report, one of the highest level. You can read it here but you can’t take it away.”

The words were spoken very slowly, and from Qianye’s angle, he could already see the entirety of her chest. Despite having seen many beauties, Qianye couldn’t help but secretly praise her fiery figure—only Nangong Xiaoniao might be able to surpass her.

Qianye only smiled faintly in the face of this obvious hint and picked up the intelligence booklet. In the past, he wouldn’t have minded a casual romance to wipe away the fatigue of a long battle. But now, Qianye only had Nighteye in his heart—that lady who was quietly waiting for him to return home.

The female officer wasn’t discouraged at the lack of response and simply sat back with a dignified attitude. Apparently, she was looking to take Qianye down by playing hot and cold.

Qianye seemed completely oblivious to the female officer’s fighting spirit as he scanned the report. His expression turned serious after flipping through a few pages.

The battle in the void had been growing in cruelty and intensity as the Evernight Council dispatched their fleets continuously. Connecting all of the battle reports together, one could see that the imperial fleet had somehow lost their initiative and had been forced to consolidate their troops for a showdown against the Evernight main fleet.

Such battles had broken out dozens of times during this half-month period and both sides had suffered losses. The empire was holding the overall advantage, but the shocking death toll proved that it was a close victory at best.

At this moment, the empire’s primary airship fleet was already struggling to handle the enemy assaults. They simply couldn’t spare the forces to deal with enemy landing parties. That was also the reason why the two landing squads that had appeared in Desert Valley were completely intact.

It was just that the imperial airship fleet’s loss of control in the void had caused the ground battles to become incomparably difficult.

The Bai clan suffered the brunt of the impact. They hadn’t even gained a stable foothold when they were uprooted by overwhelming enemy forces. The damage wasn’t limited to the fortress in which Qianye had fought—the other forward base in the warzone didn’t last long, either. Presently, the Bai clan had completely withdrawn from the Desert Valley.

The neighboring Blacklight Lake didn’t have it easy, either. Three landing squads had arrived there in the recent period. Add to that the tens of thousands of soldiers dispatched from Crimson Fjord, the enemy forces in Blacklight Warzone now numbered fifty thousand.

The Zhang clan was powerful, but even they had already suffered tens of thousands in casualty since the beginning of these arduous battles. As expected of the empire’s number one clan, they were able to hold out fearlessly in the face of an enemy force several times stronger.

However, the Evernight Council had mobilized a force far exceeding everyone’s expectations—even the Zhang clan might lose Blacklight Warzone if a fundamental reversal didn’t come soon.

Qianye’s expression grew even more serious as he flipped on. The overall report was that the empire was being suppressed in half of the territories they had initially occupied, and the Evernight side’s reinforcements were showing no signs of stopping. At this point, the scale of dark race forces on the void continent was fairly close to the empire’s.

Even Qianye knew that the empire would need at least a month of mobilization and logistic preparation in order to provide more reinforcements—and that was on the premise that there were soldiers left to send without affecting mainland defense.

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-Legion-'s Thoughts