Imperial Prince Huo frowned deeply. He wanted to seek advice from his royal brother, but what if Jiang Chen upped and left them now?
Once they brought the stones back to Rejuvenation, the prince gave it anywhere from ten days to half a month before their enemies came knocking, or thieves and robbers targeted them. It was considerable wealth that would attract a lot of attention. No factions would let slip the opportunity to make a great profit.
“Young lord Jiang Chen, I can’t figure out a solution,” Imperial Prince Huo responded deferentially. “Do you have a good idea? Please enlighten me.”
“Let’s move the stones to Winterdraw first.” Jiang Chen waved a hand. “And I mean all the stones, yours and mine. The stones will only be your downfall if you take them to Rejuvenation.”
Imperial Prince Huo hesitated. What if he didn’t get the stones back afterwards?
However, if the young lord wanted to take their half of the stones for himself, he didn’t have to do so in such a roundabout way. He could simply just take them. After all, he was the one who’d reclaimed the spirit vein from Heavenlight. Rejuvenation had no say in the matter.
“We will do as you say, young lord,” Imperial Prince Huo agreed hurriedly. “If you’re so inclined, Rejuvenation is willing to give you all of the stones.”
The imperial prince wasn’t a shortsighted man. Further thought had enlightened him that the stones would be more trouble than they were worth. If he gave them to Jiang Chen, Rejuvenation would be losing only the stones. If the prince took them home instead, Rejuvenation’s very fortunes might be in danger.
Jiang Chen smiled. “Your kind offer is appreciated. The stones will be of great help to me. Let’s settle things like that then. We’ll take them back to Winterdraw first.”
Imperial Prince Huo had simply been testing the waters. He hadn’t expected Jiang Chen to just accept the offer without a word of protest. His heart was bleeding, but he maintained a bright smile. “Alright, let’s do that.”
Jiang Chen was surprised and secretly impressed by the imperial prince’s self-control.
One after another, airboats made their way to Winterdraw.
Lu Che and the others were delighted to see Jiang Chen return. They were surprised that the young lord had brought back a large group of captives, and ones that Lu Che recognized to boot.
The middle-aged man from Heavenlight was equally surprised to see Lu Che and his companions. “Venerated Elder Lu? Aren’t you law enforcement elders from Warmspring? What are you...”
Lu Che pulled a serious face. “Warmspring is a crock of shit compared to young lord Jiang Chen. We’ve chosen to follow him.”
The middle-aged man made a dejected sound of understanding. It was true that Warmspring paled in comparison to the young lord of the Eternal Sacred Land. There was absolutely no competition.
“Watch them closely, Lu Che, and wait for their people to pay their ransom,” Jiang Chen ordered coolly. “If no one comes around in a month, they’ll be Winterdraw’s slaves from then on. You’ll be free to order them as you will.”
“Great!” Lu Che responded excitedly.
Jiang Chen summoned Imperial Prince Huo and Chief Warden Ding after taking care of those from Heavenlight.
“You must be resentful, thinking that I’m greedy for taking your share of the stones.”
“Not at all!” Imperial Prince Huo protested hurriedly. “Honestly, Rejuvenation can’t really claim to have any ownership over the spirit stones. You took the mines back from Heavenlight. It’s in your right to not give us anything. In fact, we owe you the stones.”
Jiang Chen waved a hand. “That’s not how things go. I told you to give me the stones for your own good.”
“What?” Imperial Prince Huo was befuddled, but realization then dawned on him.
“You’d be the cause of your own doom by taking the stones with you,” explained Jiang Chen. “That’s the truth even if you don’t want to admit to it.”
“Honestly, you’re right, young lord. Rejuvenation isn’t powerful enough to keep the stones for ourselves.”
“That’s why I asked you to come here, to listen to your opinions,” Jiang Chen said with great conviction. “If you insist on taking the stones, I won’t force you to surrender them. You can keep your share.
“But I’d greatly appreciate if you’d be willing to exchange for other compensation. I need the stones and I’ll pay you back with things of the same value. The compensation won’t be in terms of material resources, but heritage you can pass down for many generations.”
“Oh?” Imperial Prince Huo’s eyes lit up. Jiang Chen was indeed a man of integrity. He was offering them a fair trade! That would be the best outcome for Rejuvenation. He was both excited and curious about what the young lord might offer them.
Jiang Chen did have pressing need for the stones. If Rejuvenation gave him their half, he’d have gathered fifty to sixty percent of what he needed for the great formation. Sixty to seventy if taken into consideration the stones he’d accumulated beforehand.
He’d be halfway there.
With some hard work, it’d be possible for him to gather the remaining thirty to forty percent in three to five years.
It’d require some luck to locate more mines, but there must be a wealth of untapped spirit veins on the vast land of Myriad Abyss. He was most confident he could achieve his goal.
“What do you think it is that Rejuvenation lacks the most, Imperial Prince Huo?”
Imperial Prince Huo paused and gave the question some thought. “We lack a solid foundation and heritage, without which we have difficulty raising top cultivators. There aren’t any peak empyrean cultivators in Rejuvenation. If we did, factions such as Heavenlight would at least think twice before invading us.”
“That’s right, you lack a solid foundation.” Jiang Chen nodded. “How is a foundation laid down for traditionally powerful factions? Heritage. It may not be material resources either. A wealth of collection can often be more important, such as martial dao methods, divine treasures, and other heritage.”
Imperial Prince Huo sighed. That was something Rejuvenation didn’t dare even dream of.
“The spirit stones are quite valuable. I’m not going to take you for a ride. If you’re willing to give me the stones, I’ll grant you three things.
“First, if you can find the ingredients for the Crowning Empyrean Pill, I’ll refine you a cauldron of them for free. The pills can advance empyrean cultivators a level at no cost.
“Second, I’ll give you a martial dao method. It’ll be at demigod level, if not divine level.
“Third, if you encounter trouble you can’t resolve, I’ll unconditionally come to your aid once!”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Lol at the prince thinking, "But.. but.. I was JK!!"