Song Zining’s flippant smile disappeared. “Have you decided?”
Qianye sighed in his heart and nodded firmly.
Song Zining also calmed down at this point. After some thought, he shot Qianye a glance filled with unclear implications and laughed. “Qianye, you’ve grown up.”
It seemed Song Zining had already thought about the matters that would follow. Without waiting for Qianye to say anything, he said, “As the princess of the Monroe clan, Nighteye’s basic information is definitely within the empire’s records, including her portrait. Most people on Evernight Continent have no access to these reports, but the situation at present is special. There are too many imperial experts here, so she can’t appear directly.”
Song Zining pointed to himself with his fan. “I need about three or four days to make some arrangements. The battle here just ended, so it’ll be some time before they can start another one. This gives me some free time. I’ll take a couple of days off to accompany you back to Blackflow City. When do you plan to return?”
Qianye was somewhat hesitant. “Zining, just tell me the relevant contacts. This matter is too dangerous, you shouldn’t take part.” He had indeed wanted to ask Song Zining for a method that would allow Nighteye to live permanently in human lands, but he didn’t want to get him involved directly since it was a forbidden matter.
Song Zining sneered, “You still know what danger is?!” He paused for a while, then continued, “The imperial laws are strict, but it doesn’t convict people associated with the offender. Rest assured, I’ll be able to extricate myself if something happens.”
Song Zining’s words stoppered Qianye. He was too familiar with Song Zining—that expression and tone made it clear that he was really angry.
Song Zining regained his calm as he glanced at Qianye’s bewildered and painful expression. “You still have to get through that meeting with Marshal Boqian, no one can help you with that. If everything goes smoothly, I’ll be waiting for you in Blackflow City five days from now.”
Qianye nodded slowly.
Song Zining said, “It’s settled then. I’ll be going now, I still need to apply for a leave.” He turned back before stepping toward the door and said, “We’re still brothers, regardless. If something comes up, we’ll naturally shoulder it together.”
With that, Song Zining pushed the door opened and left.
Qianye sat in a daze for a fairly long time as the night crept to every corner of the unlit room. The sounds outside the window eventually died down until only the wind remained. Soaked in the darkness, Qianye calmed down at one point and entered a state of meditation required for cultivation.
He didn’t control anything intentionally and merely allowed the Glory and Mystery chapters to operate slowly in tandem. Only at this point did Qinaye discover the profundity within—these two chapters could both refine the remnant energy from the void colossus’ essence. The Mystery chapter produced darkness origin power, while the Glory chapter produced daybreak origin power.
As for tomorrow, it could only be left to fate.
The entire night passed by in cultivation, and in the blink of an eye, it was dawn. The curtain of the night was still hanging high in the skies of Evernight Continent. However, the imperial camp was already full of noise as the soldiers rose for their morning drill.
Two Zhao clan guards were already waiting outside by the time Qianye had finished washing and walked out of the room. He followed them onto a car which soon drove toward Zhang Boqian’s command camp atop the hill.
The vehicle had just passed the camp gates when Qianye felt a weight on his body. It was as though a curtain were hanging down from above and isolating the camp from the outside world. Qianye was startled because this domain was somewhat similar to Sky Demon’s Iron Curtain. It didn’t cover tens of thousands of kilometers, but its sealing properties were likely superior.
Qianye tried releasing his perception toward the invisible barrier but found that it was immediately repelled—there was no chance at all for retaliation. Like a bird in a cage, even his consciousness couldn’t fly out, and this feeling made him extremely uncomfortable. The pressure on him was also gradually increasing. It had grown from being barely discernible to the weight of a giant rock.
Qianye looked toward the central tent in shock. If all of this had come from Zhang Boqian, then this legendary imperial character’s might was truly as deep and profound as the oceans. Merely standing in his domain—one which only served for isolation and scanning—was stifling.
At this moment, the car jolted to a stop. Qianye followed everyone down, and he saw a door in front of him. This place was clearly more peaceful than the rest of the camp—the guards were pretty sparse, and there were no ordinary soldiers among those moving about. All the officers hurried along the way without stopping to talk.
Qianye glanced at the surroundings and found that the soldiers who had accompanied him on the car were completely fine. It seemed as if they couldn’t even sense the powerful pressure.
The officer leading their group was a colonel from the imperial army staff office. After noticing Qianye’s pale expression and sweating forehead, he asked in concern, “Young Noble Qianye, are your injuries still unhealed? I’ll bring you to the infirmary after your meeting with the marshal. The military has moved an entire laboratory over here, so the quality of medical care should be better than the various clans.”
Qianye waved his hand and said weakly, “I’m fine, I’m just a bit nervous since it’s my first time meeting Marshal Boqian.”
“That’s only natural! I’ve been in the army for over a decade, but I can only catch glances of the marshal from afar. I’m simply not qualified to meet him face to face!” At this point, the colonel’s expression was full of yearning. Qianye was the only one in their group who would meet Zhang Boqian; everyone else seemed rather envious.
Qianye forced a smile but didn’t continue the topic.
The guards behind this door were all from Zhang Boqian’s Ironclad Legion. The colonel had to remain here after completing the handover procedure with the guards, while someone within would lead them toward their respective destinations.
Qianye noticed that the two people who had come to lead them in were both champions. As expected, their uniforms were lined with rolling cloud patterns which he had heard of but never seen. They were the imperial guard, the Thunderous Cavalry.
It grew increasingly quiet as they went deeper in; there were no more people moving about the area. Qianye finally arrived before a large tent, to which the silent Thunder Cavalry gestured.
Qianye took a deep breath and stepped into the tent through the open right-side door. The interior was quite spacious at a glance.
This was a domed tent frequently used as the command center for imperial field army corps and could easily fit forty to fifty people. At this moment, there was a desk at the center currently occupied by a person and a tall lamp behind him. Illumination was still necessary at nine o'clock in the morning on Evernight continent. A fierce origin flame burned within the lamp, flooding the desk area with light and causing a shadow to flicker upon the man’s face.
Despite him sitting, one could see the imposing outline of his figure.
His hair, loose over his shoulders, painted a character so unrestrained that it hardly looked like he was in the army. However, that soldierly aura rushing at one’s face was tainted with the faint smell of blood. He was gazing at the golden cup in his hand, thinking about something.
A name popped up in Qianye’s mind the moment he saw him: Zhang Boqian!
Without announcing Qianye, the Thunderous Cavalry guard went back to stand with his comrades in silence. Startled, Qianye walked over and stood ten meters away from Zhang Boqian.
The man seemed to not have noticed the movement before his eyes and kept on gazing into the cup without so much as a movement. Qianye could only stand there quietly.
But as he stood there, the pressure on him gradually increased, and even his flow of origin power turned sluggish. At this moment, he was like a person who had fallen into the water but had no power to struggle. All he could do was sink slowly into the despairing embrace of the dark ocean floor.
Qianye finally moved. He glanced toward the Thunder Cavalry guards standing at the corner of the room, but all of them were standing ramrod straight without the slightest of abnormalities. Meanwhile, Qianye was finding it difficult to even breathe. The pressure on his body was so heavy that he could almost hear his bones creak and groan.
Could it be that the Thunderous Cavalry were so strong that they could ignore the pressure of Prince Greensun’s domain? However, Qianye knew that was impossible.
His breathing grew increasingly urgent, and his entire body was drenched in sweat. A large bead of sweat fell from his forehead and fell to the ground with a light rap.
The silence in the tent was thus broken.
Zhang Boqian finally looked up and cast his gaze upon Qianye. “They’re fine because they simply cannot sense my domain. You, on the other hand, were able to sense it and even hold out to this point. It can be considered a rare case.”
The pressure on Qianye’s body was drained as Zhang Boqian began to speak. He couldn’t help but heave a sigh of relief, much like a fish back in the water.
As Zhang Boqian gazed at Qianye, his eyes were unfathomable and without the slightest of fluctuations. Qianye felt that he could hide nothing before these two pupils—it was as though his entire being was transparent and all his secrets were being brought to light.
Qianye could only stand solemnly and wait for the fateful judgment.
Zhang Boqian put down the golden cup in his hand and pondered deeply. Moments later, he said, “You indeed killed Sky Demon’s avatar, quite the moldable talent. Men!”
A Thunderous Cavalry guard arrived beside him and asked, “What orders does the marshal have?”
“Check what reward he deserves.”
The Thunderous Cavalry guard was quite adept in military affairs. He replied immediately, “Killing Sky Demon’s avatar will reward either a custom-made grade-seven origin firearm and a set of corresponding ammunition, a grade-six named melee weapon produced by a master, or a set of grade-six battle armor produced by the imperial family workshop.”
The list he could pick from was quite long, but Qianye cut him short, “Can I leave this military contribution for later use?”
The Thunderous Cavalry guard was startled. “The reward list this time is unprecedented and contains no small number of premium products, even some equipment used by the Imperial Guard. This isn’t something normally seen.”
Qianye nodded. “I thank your good intentions, sir, but I hope to record this for later use.”
At this point, Zhang Boqian said indifferently, “Then it’s settled, you may withdraw.”
Since even Zhang Boqian had spoken thus, the Thunderous Cavalry guard could only return to his previous position with an immediate salute. Qianye was led back out by the same two guards who had led him in.
Qianye could hardly believe what had happened as the heavy door and the colonel came into view. He had actually walked out just like that? Qianye knew Zhang Boqian had seen through all of his secrets, but the latter had allowed him to leave safely without saying anything.
Was there a plot in all this? But Qianye quickly denied this outrageous thought. Just what kind of person was Zhang Boqian? Why would he need to play tricks on him? The man’s temperament had always been devoid of convolutions. He would promote those he liked, and slap those he didn’t to death. How could he be an exception?
But what was going on right now? Zhang Boqian clearly paid Qianye attention, otherwise, he wouldn’t have spent so much time on him.
Qianye’s doubts as he left were even stronger than when he had arrived, so much so that he suspected whether Zhang Boqian had seen through everything. There was also a small knot in his heart—he didn’t know whether he was relieved or disappointed that he didn’t get to meet that person.Previous Chapter Next Chapter