Qin Ye was surprised, “Why is that the case?”
“Who knows? Perhaps it’s just the workings of the Heavenly Dao.” Arthis raised an eyebrow and continued, “Like I’ve mentioned before, every expansion of Hell will result in the appearance of different things - seasons, disasters, Yin beasts, special resources… All of these things come hand in hand with the expansion of Hell, but no one can predict which order they would come, and what exactly would come. But, regardless, Hell’s expansion should always take priority over anything else.”
Qin Ye mulled over these things for several minutes before finally nodding in agreement, “Let’s go outside for a walk. If we’re going to be suspending works for the induction ceremony of a divine artifact, and erecting a monument to commemorate the same, it would be better for us to make this announcement in person.”
None had any objections. Hell’s development was on the verge of taking off, and they couldn’t afford to be complacent now. The more important something was, the more they had to be cautious about it. Despite his usual lackadaisical disposition to things, Qin Ye fully appreciated when it was time to shed that facade and don the mask of caution.
With that, the entire entourage walked back out of Hell’s Gate, only to be greeted by the incessant clamor of the newly invigorated Hell.
Ghostly citizens were bustling everywhere.
If this had just been a month or two ago, most of the Yin spirits would most certainly have been seen idling about outside Hell’s Gate, leaning against a tree or fooling about. Some would even stare vacantly at the sky, or gaze longingly at the scattered construction equipment in the distance.
But everything was completely different now.
The arrival of hundreds of tonnes of materials packed into dozens of containers was no different from pouring boiling oil into water - it immediately ignited the bubbling enthusiasm of the ghostly citizens around.
Huang Liangchuan had already set up a stage in a conspicuous location, and he held a loudspeaker to his lips, yelling hoarsely at the top of his voice, “... The new Hell will always be at the forefront of innovation and change! A society without money is not a stable society! The establishment of the central bank is well on the horizon. I cordially invite all who were part of the finance industry to grow your career at the central bank…”
And he wasn’t the only one. In fact, countless temporary staff members were drawing crowds to themselves at various parts of Hell with their loudspeakers, eloquence and rhetorics, “... Riding the establishment of the central bank, the print industry cordially invites all experienced citizens to put in their applications! Ladies and gentlemen, it’s easy to add icing to the cake, but we’re looking for people who are willing to send coal in a snowstorm… Just imagine the changes in Hell once the monetary system has been established!”
“New Hell Editorial Department is searching for its chief editor! We’re only accepting applications from those who have experience serving in an equivalent position of at least a second-tier domestic magazine! We’re also recruiting a hundred journalists! You may be given overseas assignments! I repeat - you may be given overseas assignments!” “Formation of the Trades Union! Fellow comrades with an interest in revitalizing the businesses of the underworld are invited to join us right away! Everyone, just ask yourself whether you’ve had enough of slaving away for the benefits of others back in the mortal realm! The Trades Union of the New Hell needs you! There are only forty places up for grabs! Only those who have managed assets of more than ten million back in the mortal realm need apply!”
Oda Nobunaga’s furrowed brows finally loosened up.
He, too, once used to be a ruler who had worked his way up from nothing to become one of the most well-known daimyos of all time. Thus, how could he possibly fail to notice that the chaos was built upon surging passion that had erupted from what used to be a thick layer of ice encasing everyone’s heart? Everything appeared chaotic, and yet there was a profound order in the chaos.
As long as we can tide through the nascent stages of growth, and as long as our rulers can maintain a clear mind and remain just as conscientious as ever, then… all that awaits us is a soaring era of development!
And that’s not all…
He glanced at Qin Ye discreetly.
This man’s heart… isn’t as small and unambitious as I’d thought initially…
The plan was to iron out the creases and stabilize his governance over the next few months. And then, he would introduce the feudal officials to the state of the new Hell’s development at the imperial court meeting at the end of the year. Not only would he be able to dispel any thoughts of usurpation, he might even be able to seal the perception of equality between nations from the onset!
This was extremely crucial!
After all, it was only with the perception of equality that one could begin to discuss matters of strategic alliances and trade routes. Then, with money and resources in hand, Hell could continue to develop at a steady rate. Everything would give rise to a virtuous cycle of growth and prosperity!
Moreover… if the new Hell were able to recover the legacy that had been left behind in the old Hell, it would undoubtedly overtake the underworlds of the feudal officials in no time.
Qin Ye didn’t notice Oda Nobunaga’s gaze.
“How lively…” He exclaimed involuntarily - How did I allow Hell to exist in its state just months ago? It used to be grave and somber. Nobody wanted to be there, and their future was bleak. There wasn’t any food or drinks, and people would simply slump and slouch by the trees as they watched time trickle by unendingly. Hell used to be filled with a sense of declension.
“This is only normal.” Su Dongxue couldn’t help but express her great emotions, “My lord, do you know something? It wasn’t too long ago that the most common expression to be heard and seen throughout Hell was that of lamentation and complaints. When the last Yin spirit riot broke out and the Wrath-fiend ravaged Hell, not a single person found ourselves surprised by it.”
“Either riot against the silence of Hell, or to perish in silence.” Qin Ye watched the citizens’ expression of hope as he smiled faintly.
“That’s right…” Arthis remarked somewhat emotionally, “Do you recall those advertisements in the mortal realm that sell us the dream of making money while idling? Well, that ‘idleness’ certainly doesn’t contemplate the exclusion of computers, cell phones, luxurious afternoon teas, KTV, and other forms of entertainment. In fact, you can say that the new Hell has given idleness a whole new meaning over its last year of existence.”
“Perhaps the ghostly citizens might have enjoyed the feeling of doing nothing at the start. After all, the mortal realm can admittedly be dreary at times. But, that said, how long will that feeling of enjoyment last? A month? Perhaps a few months at best?”
“They were already on the verge of insanity with the sheer boredom that plagued them all the time.” She stepped forward, and her gaze carried some trace of warmth, “The appearance of Qin Gardens Phase One had undoubtedly injected excitement into the hearts of the citizens and caused their blood to course through their veins once more. However, there was simply nothing to follow it up. It didn’t matter how well your motivational speech was received, because anyone’s heart would soon grow cold when they saw how sparse the construction site looked with the few feeble machines. But now, things are different. We’ve got hundreds of tons of supplies to rejuvenate them time after time. Seize the momentum and win their hearts. As soon as you can do that, then catching up with Brittania and Usonia is only a matter of time!”
Qin Ye nodded affirmatively and slowly made his way to the front of Hell’s Gate, where he cleared his throat with a thunderous sound that reverberated throughout every corner of Hell. Up on the roof, Ming Shiyin jumped from the shock of the abrupt announcement and cursed under his breath, “Bloody hell…”
The buzz of voices promptly subsided. Qin Ye had earned every bit of fear and reverence he was currently accorded. Everyone knew that he wasn’t to be trifled with. He paused for a moment, and then smiled faintly, “The sight of your ebullience pleases me.”
“I’m here today to make a few announcements. First and foremost, I’m pleased to announce that we’ve managed to locate and secure one of the three major divine artifacts of Hell - the Book of Life and Death!”
The voices that had just subsided instantly exploded once again. Countless ghostly citizens immediately exchanged looks of great disbelief with each other.
Is it THAT Book of Life and Death that we’re talking about? The stuff of legends that is said to hold the power over life and death? The fact that they were hearing such an announcement of great importance when they were already filled with enthusiasm only caused the citizens’ eyes to be filled to the brim with hope and expectancy for the future.
Qin Ye made a grabbing motion in the air, and innumerable wisps of black-and-white energy began to converge in front of his hand, where it soon took the shape of an ancient book.
Whoosh… The pages of the book appeared to rustle and flutter on its own as a series of names immediately surrounded Qin Ye. Qin Ye did his best to maintain the disposition of the leader of a nation and continued with a deep and authoritative voice, “We shall soon witness the induction ceremony of the Book of Life and Death. With the Book of Life and Death back in Hell where it belongs, everyone will henceforth be able to see the birth and death dates of your loved ones, and you’ll be able to make plans for your future.”
“Your Majesty!” There was a sudden flurry of activity, and a citizen couldn’t help but raise his hand into the air, “What kind of plans do you mean?”
Very good… That’s exactly the question I was waiting for… Qin Ye nodded, “It’s simple. Hell is soon going to implement its system of currency, and everything in Hell will have a value pegged to it. When you learn of the date of death of your loved ones, wouldn’t you… want to plan for the purchase of a three-bedroom apartment?”
What the hell?!
Arthis stared at Qin Ye as though she had just seen a ghost - Aaarrrrgggh… You’ve actually done it this time… To think that you would actually port over the real estate bubble of the mortal realm to Hell! But... doesn’t it seem perfect and seamless for some strange reason? I mean… look at the citizens’ expressions of approbation… was I wrong this time?
Arthis wasn’t the only one who was shocked. In fact, every single citizen recoiled slightly in astonishment.
Can you even do something like that?
As expected, real estate truly drives the economy… Bloody hell, they’re not even dead yet, and I’m already expected to prepare a place of lodging to receive them? Eh… I suppose it does make sense, given how people purchase plots of lands for their grave in advance…
No, but there still seems to be something wrong with this!
Qin Ye pretended not to notice the looks of confusion below. After all, he was fixated on marketing the draw of real estate. Thus, he continued with a look of righteous indifference on his face, “Everyone, you’ve already died once. Having spent your lives in tiny pens no larger than the size of forty square meters, are you sure you’ll want to spend your afterlife in the same conditions all over again?”
“Even if you don’t do this for yourselves, you should at the very least make plans for your wives, your children and your grandchildren! I’m not trying to scare you here, but just look at the rate of Hell’s development right now and consider how much each square foot of apartment would cost by the time your grandchildren join you in this place? Haven’t you once beaten your chest back in the mortal realm, wondering why you didn’t start early when the apartment prices were only 3,000 RMB per square foot? But that’s fine - because Yin Construction will give you the opportunity to start all over again! All you’ll have to do is to work hard for the next few decades or so, and by the time your grandchildren enter Hell, their lives would all be sorted out!”
The Yin spirits who had initially raised their hands into the air with questions on their lips feebly put down their hands - This speech is just too weird… It seems to weave in and out of truth and lie… Everything sounds prim and proper, yet a niggling part of my heart seems to be telling me that everything about what he’s said is completely wrong… Is this feeling… just an illusion?
Even Arthis was lost for words right now.
How can you even tie in the induction of the Book of Life and Death to the sale of real estate… Arthis made up her mind to distance herself from the third King Yanluo of Hell.
Just like that, Qin Ye continued to ramble on and on for the next ten minutes, before finally wrapping up with great emphasis, “Everyone, the Book of Life and Death allows you to get a peek into the future and make plans as best as you can. We’re at the valley of real estate prices right now. Seize the opportunity. Don’t regret it when the price index soars to the stars later on.”
“Apart from that, the Book of Life and Death also expands the capabilities of Hell as a realm.” Arthis could no longer resist interjecting. The future King Yanluo of Hell had gone on at length with his spiel about real estate in Hell, and she couldn’t afford to let him get away with it any longer, “As soon as the Book of Life and Death is set in its place, it will act as a foundation for certain specialized facilities and buildings that are unique to Hell and Hell alone.”
“Hell is a realm, but it’s not quite the same as the mortal realm. This is a place where science integrates with magic in a harmonious way. Your experience in the mortal realm may be useful, but it might not necessarily be directly applicable. Anyhow…”
She took a deep breath and declared, “Over the next month, the government is going to tally up its supplies and consolidate its personnel. Then, on this very day next month, we shall conduct the ceremony for the induction of the Book of Life and Death into Hell. At that time… I believe everyone will personally understand the true nature of Hell as a realm.”
Having been robbed of his words, the future King Yanluo of Hell glared at Arthis with great dissatisfaction and whispered while the citizens below were discussing with great excitement, “Why are you stealing my thunder?!”
“How can I not?!” Arthis gnashed her teeth, “Even the Book of Life and Death is weeping in sorrow from how much you’ve been selling it short! Aren’t you afraid of the prospects of being clipped to death by a book?!”Previous Chapter Next Chapter