Many powerful groups were aware of the recent developments in the Demi-Immortal Institute, and it was only natural that an imperial trading caravan would be no exception.
Even the most inferior of groups that came to do business in the Western Continent were people from rich and powerful clans. Other than such groups, who could possibly arrange for passage through the dimensional barrier?
People like that would obviously be informed about the situation in the Demi-Immortal Institute, and would also be privy to other rumors and clues that ordinary people might not. How could they not have heard of Yang Qi, who had won the Inter-Institutional Martial Arts Competition, and then defied the Crown Prince?
Of course, the fact that he had repaired the damage to heaven trumped everything else. To many people, he was the ultimate hero, a mysterious and enigmatic figure who existed far above ordinary people.
Even more telling, everyone was saying that he had succeeded in repairing heaven because he was backed by an all-powerful, mysterious figure, someone beyond the Great Sage level. Obviously, that person had to be in the Demi-Immortal level, someone strong enough to destroy the cosmos and eradicate all the lands.
In the beginning, a lot of people had believed that Yang Qi was overestimating himself to believe that he could defy the Crown Prince. To them, he had been like a moth challenging a raging fire. But after what had played out, most people had changed their minds. In fact, many members of the Crown Prince Society had even gone into hiding.
Many people now thought that the Crown Prince was the one in great danger.
Even if the Crown Prince reached the Great Sage level, he wouldn’t be able to fight against someone powerful enough to repair damage done to heaven.
Because of all those things, when the people present learned that they were dealing with Yang Qi, they started to get excited. He was like a hero from an epic poetic saga.
“You’re the holy neophyte Yang Qi?” the leader of the caravan said. “Sir, just how powerful are your energy arts? They seem terrifying. Back during the martial arts competition, weren’t you just a Lifeseizer? Now that I think about it, Lady-Princess Silvermoon is an Astral-Star Legendary, just on the verge of reaching the Never-Dying Transformation. With the power of Silvermoon at her disposal, she could easily crush Never-Dying Legendaries! But you not only defeated her, you took her city! Doesn’t that indicate that you could defeat a Never-Dying Legendary?”
Everyone in the Grand Emperor's Pagoda began to discuss the matter.
“He was only recently in the Lifeseizing level, but now he can actually defeat someone in the Astral-Star Transformation? Those two levels are miles apart! One’s like an ant, the other’s like a dragon. For an ant to become a dragon almost overnight definitely requires the backing of someone stronger than a Great Sage. No one would believe any other explanation.”
“In other words, Yang Qi is already strong enough to beat the Crown Prince?”
“I’d say it’s eighty to ninety percent likely.”
From the awe in their eyes as they looked at Yang Qi, it was obvious they believed him to be a very important person. Two years ago, if Yang Qi had encountered any of these people, they would have been the important people to him.
“Brother Yang Qi,” the leader said, “I am your humble servant Sage Greatmaster, an imperial clansman of the Sage Ancestor Dynasty, the thirty-second son of Vice Prince Mightyplexus. I'm completely in your debt now, so once I'm back in Capital City, I’ll do everything I can to pay you back. In fact, I know that you have several sworn brothers in Capital City, people from very powerful clans, so I’ll definitely reach out to them to offer thanks.”
All true members of the Sage Ancestor Dynasty were surnamed Sage, a name that had been bestowed by the original emperor on his descendants, and a name that no one else in the continent was allowed to use. As it turned out, the leader of the trade caravan was an imperial clansman, which meant that he actually ranked quite highly. Considering that, it made sense for Yang Qi to make use of him.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” Yang Qi said loudly, “please get some rest here in the Grand Emperor's Pagoda. After I fully subdue Lady-Princess Silvermoon, and perfect a consummate energy art that I've been working on, I’ll make contact with Prince Wei and make sure you all get back to the Rich-Lush Continent.”
Sage Greatmaster nodded his head and said, “Of course, Brother Yang Qi, please go ahead to handle whatever business you have.”
Then he looked back at the rest of the people and said, “Calm down, everyone. We're safe here in the Grand Emperor's Pagoda. It’s a treasure forged by Grand Emperor Rich-Lush himself, and is powerful enough to control the entire plane we come from.”
In response, the crowd quieted, and watched as Yang Qi nodded and vanished from the place.
In another dimension in the pagoda, Yang Qi materialized, then looked up at a gigantic, silver city floating in the air, completely locked down with sealing marks. Underneath the city, four individuals were chained up and immobile. One of them was the powerful Lady-Princess Silvermoon, and the others were her three War Gods.
“Hello there, Lady-Princess Silvermoon,” he said, looking down at her. “So, how are you feeling now? You said people from the Rich-Lush Continent are all scum, and now here you are, captured and your city taken away. Anything you’d like to say?”
“You’re dead, scum! The Great Sages of the Sky-Heaven Dynasty will hunt you to the ends of the earth if they have to. Nobody can save you now.” She had regained her scepter, and still had a few talismans left, which were organized into the shape of a huge white lotus, ensuring that she was safe from any harm.
However, the spiderweb-like network of chains locking her in place made it so that she couldn’t do anything.
Her War God subordinates had no such protection, and thus, the chains stabbed into them and slowly drained their true energy. None of them were strong enough to actually fight back.
The white lotus protecting Lady-Princess Silvermoon wasn't something of her own creation, but rather, the work of a Great Sage. It was specifically designed to protect against all sorts of harmful magics, and was the only reason she was currently beyond harm.
“I'm dead?” Yang Qi laughed coldly. “Presumably you’ve heard that the Rich-Lush Continent’s heaven has been repaired, and the hell monsoons blocked. Wormholes created by ancient Great Sages have opened up, allowing all sorts of universal power to flow into the continent. In the following centuries, the continent will truly become rich and lush, and your Western Continent will count for nothing compared to it.”
“You!” Lady-Princess Silvermoon blurted. “Why are you bringing this up? Wait. Don’t tell me….”
“Yes. I'm the person who repaired heaven. And my backer isn't some Great Sage. You think that the Western Continent can do a thing to me? If you do, you’re delusional!”
His true energy erupted forth, smashing into the white lotus, which trembled violently, causing Lady-Princess Silvermoon’s face to turn ashen.
“You’re Yang Qi? The same person everyone is talking about, whose backer is an invincible Demi-Immortal expert?” Lady-Princess Silvermoon’s heart was already pounding with fear. After all, stories about Yang Qi had already begun to spread in the Western Continent, and as a high-ranking member of the ruling class, she knew more about the matter than most.
Obviously, the Western Continent had agents in the Rich-Lush Continent.
They knew all of the most important pieces of information, including that Yang Qi had the Grand Emperor's Pagoda.
Now that Lady-Princess Silvermoon was convinced of who Yang Qi was, she was even more scared, considering the rumors about his backer. Other than a Demi-Immortal, who could possibly have repaired the damage to heaven, stopped the hell monsoons, and saved the despairing sage spirits? A person like that was strong enough to actually destroy the Western Continent.
“What do you want? Even if you do have a Demi-Immortal backer, now that you’re here in the Western Continent, a person like that would still be subject to the magical laws here. He would be rejected by heaven and earth and….” Lady-Princess Silvermoon started out speaking with confidence, but slowly, her voice grew softer until she simply stopped talking.
“I'm not interested in hearing blabbering from you, Lady-Princess Silvermoon,” Yang Qi said. “I’ll give you two options. One: destroy those talismans and let me seal you. Work for me, and I’ll spare your life. Option two: die! I'd prefer you not force me to use the truly terrifying power I have access to.”
“You!” Although Lady-Princess Silvermoon’s face fell because of Yang Qi’s threats, in the end, it seemed she wasn’t afraid of dying. “This is a Sky-Heaven Godcharm, crafted by Grand Empress Sky-Heaven. Back when she fought with Grand Emperor Rich-Lush, neither of them could gain the upper hand. You really think you can get past something like that?” 
Although the Western Continent was currently a subordinate to the Hanging Mountain, its founder, Grand Empress Sky-Heaven, had been full-blooded Demonfolk. In fact, she had ranked high in the Hanging Mountain.
Years ago, she had waged war with Grand Emperor Rich-Lush, until they finally reached a peace agreement. But now, both leaders were gone, moved on to higher planes of existence.
It was true that it would take a lot of effort for Yang Qi to unravel the Sky-Heaven Godcharm, which in turn meant that directly threatening Lady-Princess Silvermoon wasn’t really an option.
However, there was another factor that Lady-Princess Silvermoon hadn’t considered.
“You’re really not afraid of the power of my Demi-Immortal backer?” Yang Qi said, his eyes glittering. “Make no mistake, Lady-Princess Silvermoon, you have two things working in your advantage. One, you’re a woman. Two, you’re valuable. Any other person in your position would be dead already.”
“Hmph! You can use Demi-Immortal power? If so, let’s see it!” According to the old saying, a dead pig doesn't fear scalding water, and in this moment, neither did Lady-Princess Silvermoon fear any threats from Yang Qi.
“Fine! I’ll show you how strong I am! Altar, come forth!” He waved his hand, and Lady-Princess Silvermoon’s own altar flew out and landed on the ground, its sagely-grade spirit stone emanating the most holy of auras.
1. Technically, the term ‘grand emperor’ is gender-neutral in Chinese. Of course, despite that, it would be normal to assume that this leader is male. The fact that she is female is not revealed for a few more chapters, but honestly, it’s not particularly important to the plot, so I’m revealing it here.