The sounds inside the room came to a sudden stop. The girl, her clothes in disarray, had been pressed onto the table. She was cutting quite the sorry figure in that awkward position, and it looked like she would fall to the predator any time soon. Song Zining, on the other hand, was like a fully strung bow, ready to devour the young girl at a moment’s notice.
The two looked over in unison, frozen in their previous position with faces full of shock.
“Zining, seriously, you’re too… Ah, it’s you?” Qianye was stunned when he saw the girl’s face clearly. This girl was one of Song Zining’s maids, but she also served as his assistant because she was rather smart and capable. She had already followed Song Zining for many years, so scenes like this weren’t exactly rare.
As an experienced person, Song Zining quickly recovered his calm. He patted the girl below with a smile and said, “You go out first, I have something to discuss with Qianye.”
The girl was also calm now. She glanced at Qianye, chuckling with her mouth covered as she left in a flash.
It was Qianye who couldn’t quite calm down. “This… I thought…”
Song Zining laughed. “You thought I was bullying a weak civilian girl?”
“What you guys were saying, it sounded like…” Qianye stammered.
Song Zining laughed loudly. “Don’t you think these words are classic? It’s more interesting when you role-play, you fool.”
Qianye was speechless. This young master’s urges were simply too difficult to approve of.
Song Zining stared at Qianye, saying, “You’re not that kind of jealous person, what’s up?”
Qianye said awkwardly, “You have all the women you want. There’s no need to use such methods, right? You just need to swap out the girl if one doesn’t agree, the loss is theirs. Besides, we’re on our own turf right now. It won’t be that great if word gets out. That’s why I came in to dissuade you.”
Song Zining laughed until he was bent over. He then slapped Qianye on the shoulder with his fan, saying, “You’re really cute. You can’t even figure out such a classic script! It’s in all those shitty plays.”
Qianye was emotionless. “I don’t watch plays.”
“Fine, let’s leave the discussion here. How did the mission go? Did you get the goods? Were there any accidents?”
“There was, in fact, an accident. I ran into Linken’s demonkin fleet and a battle broke out.”
“Linken!” Song Zining shot to his feet. “Which Linken? Don’t tell me it's that demonkin duke?”
Qianye thought back carefully. “Her strength, as far as I remember, isn’t at the duke level. She should be just a vice-duke.”
Song Zining glared fiercely at Qianye. “Just!? A vice-duke is still a duke! Sire Qianye, that vice-duke is stronger than a newly ascended imperial divine champion! Besides, it’s a fleet battle, right? How are you alive, even?”
“Mm, her flagship was there, too.”
Song Zining was about to sit down at first, but he shot back to his feet. “Her flagship!? It’s over, it’s over. That means the corvette and cargo ships are gone, right? This… what should I do? Let it be. That’s not important. Are you injured? Are you okay? Let me know if you need any medicines, I’ll find a way to get them. There’s nothing in this place, I have to get it from the empire. It’ll take a long while to go back and forth.”
“I’m not injured.” Despite saying that, Qianye felt a bit guilty under Song Zining’s gaze. “It was just a bit of light injury, nothing half a day’s rest cannot heal. You know I recover pretty fast.”
Song Zining didn’t trust him at first. He grabbed Qianye up and began groping him all over, probing wantonly with his origin power. He seemed to have forgotten about Qianye’s blood energy in his urgency. In the end, the dark golden energy broke out in retaliation and engulfed both of them in sanguineous flames.
Song Zining howled in pain as he retreated urgently. Qianye also suppressed his blood energy as quickly as he could and went back to check if the seventh young master was fine.
Fortunately, despite its decline, the Song clan’s cultivation arts were at the peak of the empire. Song Zining’s Three Thousand Flying Leaves Art was the same. His origin power looked supple and weak, but he was able to leave unscathed from Qianye’s sanguineous flames.
Saying he was unscathed was a bit of an exaggeration actually. The seventh young master found his face covered in black ash, and a small part of his brows had been singed.
Qianye looked apologetic. “I never thought it’d turn out this way, are you okay?”
Song Zining stretched an ash-covered hand toward Qianye, saying furiously, “Okay? Do I look okay?”
Qianye felt relieved. “It’s fine as long as you’re fine as a whole. A bit of hair can be ignored.”
Song Zining grabbed Qianye by the collar. “What do you mean by a bit of hair!? A bit of injury is fine, but how is this young master supposed to meet people with a damaged eyebrow?”
“It’s not like you’re making a living with your face.” Qianye was nonchalant. It would be a true joke if the future god of strategy relied on his face to make a living.
“Of course I’m not relying on my face for a living, but the better one looks, the better and easier the food. Why wouldn’t I want it? You, on the other hand, could’ve easily relied on your face for a living, yet you just had to rely on that strength of yours. You had so many beautiful ladies to choose from back in the empire. You missed so many opportunities. We can let the past be, but the opportunities at present are hard to come by. Tianqing and Kuanglan aren’t bad choices…”
Qianye interrupted. “Wait a minute, I don’t like men.”
Song Zining was startled. “What’s so bad about men?”
Qianye didn’t understand where Song Zining was coming from, nor did he know how to reply to this question. All he could do was maintain his silence.
Song Zining snorted coldly, saying, “It looks like you’re really okay. It’s all fine then, we can let the goods be. Money can be earned again. It’s those men I feel pained about, they’re the best of Ningyuan Heavy Industries who have followed me for so many years.”
“The cargo ships are fine.”
“Fine? Didn’t you encounter Linken’s fleet?”
“I did, and we fought. I think I destroyed half her fleet and her flagship.”
“Oh? That’s great… you destroyed what!? Her flagship!?” Song Zining almost jumped up in fright.
“She was careless I guess.”
“Careless? You don’t know about her accomplishments? How could she be careless? Okay, even if she was careless, how did you do that?”
Qianye summarized the process of the battle. Song Zining listened speechlessly, and then said after a long period of silence, “Wow, poor her.”
He then became spirited. “This main cannon really solved a huge problem for us. This duke-grade warship is a high-quality vessel. We won’t need to swap it out for a good while. It’s just that she’ll probably kill her way here if news gets out.”
Song Zining grabbed a sheet of paper and drew an outline of the Martyr’s Palace. Then he wrote down a series of numbers and said following a blur of calculations, “Yes, the materials recycled from this battle should be enough to give the Martyr’s Palace a layer of armor.”
Next, Song Zining explained his newly designed plan. The current Martyr’s Palace largely resembled the Earth Dragon’s skeleton and most of the abdominal wall was missing. Because of how big the draconic body was, just adding a layer of armor on the empty spaces would require a vast amount of materials. Only high-grade alloy was a fit for the Martyr’s Palace, a cost even Song Zining would find difficult to shoulder. Hence, they had always been left empty.
This time, Qianye had obtained a large number of demonkin shipwrecks. Although most of the equipment on them had been destroyed, the materials from them were just what Qianye needed. However, the Martyr’s Palace was so big that the materials they had weren’t enough to cover up the holes. Hence, Song Zining designed it in a mesh design that would cover up the openings. Although this kind of body provided no cover against cannon shells and bullets, it served as a good defense against ballistae.
The large amount of materials originally designated for the ship’s body would be used to build engines and other parts. After refinement into a higher grade alloy, they could be used to build destroyer-grade engines. This would improve the palace’s mobility and put it on par with ordinary cargo ships.
In the end, they would need to install a massive fuel storage chamber and special origin arrays to provide energy. Although Landsinker couldn’t sink a continent in one shot, it would have no difficulty tearing a destroyer apart.
The barely usable demonkin warship main cannon was installed alongside the ones arriving on the cargo ships, serving as the lateral firepower of the Martyr’s Palace. This would prevent small warships from beating up the palace from blind angles.
Qianye frowned upon seeing this design. Although it was quite feasible, one could easily see that the meshwork armor was a temporary installment. It would have to be disassembled and replaced by proper ship plating one day. This kind of design was a waste of manpower and resources, possessing no merit except fulfilling temporary needs.
“What’s wrong with it? I took a long time to think, but the materials are really not enough. This is only possible because you intercepted so many demonkin materials.” Song Zining was excited.
“Zining, are we about to fight a war?” Song Zining’s expression changed drastically at Qianye’s question. He then nodded silently.
The two were very clear. The war Qianye was referring to wasn’t just a small skirmish between ordinary mercenary corps, but a true war without limitations. The moment Linken appeared in the void, the clouds of war had already spread all over the neutral lands. Song Zining had proposed such a design in order to quickly raise the fighting power of the Martyr’s Palace. As for the complete design, there was no time to work on that.
“Why?” Qianye asked.
“The Great Maelstrom.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Legion ED: Moxie