So desu ne…
Qin Ye rubbed his chin with understanding. So that’s how it is… I’d thought that two hundred thousand merit points was going to take ages. But now, it seems like… I’m going to be able to rack up those points in the blink of an eye!
He was restarting Hell from scratch, and there were a multitude of things to be done. How many merit points were there up for grabs?
The sheer thought of it stirred a primal sense of excitement within him…
“But why is it only this little?” He was still displeased. He had done quite a lot for Hell to date, hadn’t he? So why wasn’t it already in the millions?
“Because Hell is too small in size. It was barely the size of a village when it was first established, so how many merit points do you think you could’ve been awarded at that time?” Arthis chuckled, “But once Hell expands to the size of the entire Cathay, then the sheer impact of every policy you make can bag you several hundred million merit points all at once. Of course… merit points would be useless to you at that time. Speaking of which, if memory serves me well, it takes an Infernal Judge five million merit points to be promoted to an Abyssal Prefect.”
Five--... five million?!
Qin Ye gulped nervously, and then turned his attention to the trunks of secret virtues, the boxes which contained the Yin Padma.
If… everything within these boxes contains Yin Padmas, then even if they were only Golden Lotuses of a Thousand Virtues each, ten of them would give me ten thousand merit points; a hundred would give me a hundred thousand merit points; and two hundred--...
I can already advance to an Infernal Judge?!
An Infernal Judge… Qin Ye was practically trembling with excitement, because he would no longer have to be subject to the abuse of the female devil next to him right now! He could finally stiffen his neck, hold his hand up high and say ‘no’ to her!
The mere thought about these things caused a great sense of excitement to stir in his heart. Even that scumbag Zhou Xianlong is only an Advanced Judge-class expert. Doesn’t this mean that I’ll be able to bag myself a good official post in the Special Investigations Department just by being an Infernal Judge?
Arthis could practically read his mind by now, and she glanced placidly at him, “A nascent Judge like you… is still going to feel pain when I slap you around.”
“Can we please have a proper conversation? I’m going to become an Infernal Judge soon! It’s best if you show some restraint!”
However, Arthis simply looked to the ceiling with a profound glint in her eyes, “Someone like you who has neither inherited the full legacy of Hell’s Arts nor practices magic actively… you might just turn out to be the embarrassment of all Infernal Judges out there…”
Qin Ye completely turned a deaf ear to her snarky comments - So what if I’m the embarrassment of all Infernal Judges? Wouldn’t I still be an Infernal Judge?!
And this was only a part of the great harvest from the imperial court meeting. He couldn’t wait to hear what else the newly-filled treasury had in store for him!
“Student Wang One tail, have you completed the full inventory list? Then, what are you still waiting for? Report it! Where’s your initiative? Are you waiting for me to prompt you each time before you say something?”
“......” Wang Chenghao wanted to retort so badly, but immediately handled his urge with restraint after considering Qin Ye’s cantankerous behaviour coupled with the level of stimulation of his mind right now. Thus, he swept Qin Ye’s abrasive comments to the corner of his mind.
He picked up an exquisite-looking scroll from beside him, unraveled it and began to read from it, “Special products from the Licchavi underworld - Ten Mountain Beasts, five thousand tons of Yin spirit stones, fifty tons of sunken Yin wood, one ton of stone of reincarnation, one ton of water of extreme Yin, and a hundred trunks of secret virtues.”
Qin Ye had already begun to fantasize about being the third-in-command of the entire Special Investigations Department. He raised his chin arrogantly and glanced at Arthis, before booming with a deep, commanding voice, “Translator.”
Forget it… endure... endure! If we kill him right now, we won’t be able to find a suitable replacement for him… As expected, the present King Yanluo of Hell would revert back to his whimsical self as soon as his official business was done and dusted. In fact, he was so impetuous and unbridled that he wouldn’t even bother with maintaining his self-image.
She took a deep breath and forcibly eked a smile onto her face, “The Mountain Beast… is a Yin beast that is practically synonymous with the transportation system of Hell. To that end, you have to first understand that transport in Hell isn’t done using trains and planes like back in the mortal realm.”
“Judges are able to fly for approximately thirty minutes or so. It’s only when one attains the ranks of an Abyssal Prefect that they can break away from the rules of gravity of the Heavenly Dao and finally travel through the air freely without restraint. That said, to put things into perspective, the old Hell only had a hundred to two hundred Prefects among its entire population of ten billion Yin spirits, and each Prefect is an esteemed lord or chief or governor in his own right. So, where does that leave the rest?” She ran her finger gently across the scroll, “They’ll have no choice but to rely on these Yin beasts.”
“There are many types of Yin beasts, and most of them would appear as soon as Hell grows to the size of a County. These Yin beasts can further be subdivided in accordance with their classifications. Each type of Yin beast possesses a different function or ability. For instance, the speed of a high-ranking Yin beast is comparable to that of a car, while the Mountain Beast… possesses the ability to command a different space within its body altogether. The space within is approximately three hundred square feet large, and it is able to travel at a top speed of about 100 kmph. So… what do you think it can be used for? And if you dare tell me that it’s good for placing it on one’s head as a brooch or an adornment of sorts… we’ll part ways right here, right now! I know you’re excited about the great harvest, but you’ve got to think before you speak sometimes!”
Qin Ye was just about to blurt out those words when he cautiously looked up at Arthis, before probing with a more sensible response, “Freight? Train service?”
As he spoke, his expression soon became more somber and serious once more.
The imperial court meeting was over, but there were still a multitude of things to be done in Hell. To that end, the most important thing was naturally the establishment of the new port city for foreign trade.
And one of the most difficult things in that regard was overcoming the great obstacle of transporting large quantities of supplies.
That was something that naturally couldn’t be done with just mere Yin spirits alone. It was a problem that had been niggling at the back of his mind for some time now, and he was apprehensive of the prospects of having to place the burden of transport on Arthis’ shoulder. But even that wasn’t going to be a long-term solution in any event. Fortunately, Yu Qian’s gift in this regard had resolved every bit of this conundrum of his!
Wang Chenghao had also opened his mouth wide in surprise. He had never expected the biological system of Hell to be so different to that of the mortal realm. Several seconds later, he finally managed to snap back to his senses, “Trains? This is… a train? High-speed rail?”
“Then, what about planes and cars? Are there equivalent Yin beasts?”
“There are.” Arthis nodded, “Planes are called Yin Crows. Their wingspan is approximately a hundred meters large, and they usually carry a small palace-like cabin on its back. But it’s not common to see such Yin beasts. Furthermore… there are some risks involved. Some companies don’t train their Yin Crows well, or they might have hired fresh or inexperienced operators, so if the Yin Crow gets excited mid-flight, there’s a chance that they might end up doing a barrel roll in the air or something of the sort… I recall Shen Wanshan, the tycoon of the Ming Dynasty, had previously received a lot of flak for his flight company precisely because of such issues.”
There’s seriously something like that?
“That’s right, what do they eat?” Qin Ye suddenly raised an important question, to which Arthis simply stared back in shock. Several moments later, she slowly murmured, “Why don’t… you try feeding it some Yin spirit stones?”
See if I don’t try with your head!!!
You’ve gone on for half a day about what they can be used for, and yet you don’t even know what they’re supposed to be fed with?! What are we going to do if our precious trains starve to death?!
You piece of trash!!!
He fervently suppressed the stirring rage in his heart, and addressed his mind back to the fact that this was still a positive harvest in any event. Then, he asked eagerly, “What else is there?”
“The rest aren’t all too important.” Arthis glanced at the rest, “We can’t expect every single item here to be as precious or useful as the other in any event. Rather than spend so much time going through Lord Yu’s tribute, why don’t we… turn our attention to Lord Yang’s tribute instead?”
The treasures in the entire cellar had essentially been divided into two piles. The left side was full of Yu Qian’s tributes offered by the Licchavi underworld, while the right sight was full of Yang Jiye’s tributes offered by the Luzon underworld. Both were similar in terms of quantity.
That said, the only difference was that, apart from the trunks of secret virtues and Yin spirit stones, the rest of the tributes from the Luzon underworld had been packed into huge boxes that looked hefty and full.
Qin Ye couldn’t wait to rush over to unpack his rewards. Yu Qian’s tributes had been incredibly rich, and his expectations for tributes were now through the roof. Each and every item provided by Yu Qian was something that was useful for stimulating the economy. The Mountain Beasts would play a pivotal role in the establishment of the new sea port city, and then there was still the copious amounts of Yin spirit stones that would immediately enable Hell to construct several special buildings. He couldn’t wait to see what else there was hidden in the boxes of Yang Jiye’s tributes!
Both were loyal servants of Hell, so… there should be parity in the usefulness of their tributes, right?
Clatter… The boxes opened up, and everyone glanced over, only to be completely stunned by the sight that they saw.
Everything inside these boxes were thumb-sized, black… fruits.
What the hell is this?!
Qin Ye was somewhat confused, and he began to reach into the box to dig about for something different. Fruits… and more fruits!
He peeled open a fruit with great reluctance, only to realize to his dismay that there weren’t any gemstones hidden within either…
That’s not right!!
Old man, who do you think you’re messing around with? Isn’t the different way too stark? Lord Yang, just take a look at Lord Yu’s products! We’re talking about pearls and priceless jade! Doesn’t it hurt your conscience one bit giving me something like this?
“What the hell is this?”
“Seeds.” Wang Chenghao continued reading from the scroll, “Nicknamed the Black Pearl, it’s the best nether tobacco seeds in Felipinas, ah, that is, Luzon. Unlike herbaceous tobacco back in the mortal realm, nether cigars are made from shrubs with extremely colourful flowers. In fact, the Luzon underworld even has a special tobacco avenue that is three kilometers long, filled with tobacco shrubs on both sides of the avenue. Oh, there’s more. There was a time when cigars produced in the Felipinas were renowned throughout the mortal realm. Unfortunately, their cigars were developed at the end of the Cathayan cultural revolution, and they are much less known than Brasilian cigars that are so widely proliferated throughout the world these days. In any event the production of these cigars are still done using the most traditional methods, and the taste of it is still incredibly mellow and intoxicating.”
Qin ye blinked his eyes, and then swiftly opened all of the remaining boxes, looking through each of them, one by one.
Maize, coconuts, mangoes, grapes… All of Luzon’s special products were actually seeds! No… and there were even close to a hundred boxes that contained fabrics and cloths!
Arthis nodded, “The special products of every underworld would invariably be somewhat connected with what you see in the mortal realm. Luzon is the cradle of fruits, and a large agricultural country in any event. Naturally, its specialties would be closely related to these. Besides, it’s not as though we don’t need to have food just because Yin spirits don’t live on these things. Hell used to have the Court of the National Granaries and a Meteorological Station that would work hand in hand in the production of agricultural crops, which were both tasty, fresh and filled with dense Yin energy… Eh? Cloudsoft Satin?”
When the penultimate box was opened, Arthis immediately darted over like lightning and picked up a piece of the fabric. She waved it gently, and the fabric instantly flowed with ripples like waters in a tranquil lake. The texture was no different from that of satin, and the material was practically translucent. From a distance, it looked no different from a puff of smoke. It was well evident that this was a top-quality fabric.
“This is the famous Cloudsoft Satin that only the Spice Islands can produce. The pupae of the Black Death Butterflies from which it is made only grows among the spices, and it was a material that fetched the same price as gold itself. Tsk tsk… did Yang Jiye send us the pupae of the Black Death Butterflies?”
Arthis glanced at the final box, within which lay thousands of snow-white Black Death Butterfly chrysalis.
All of the boxes had finally been opened, and everything else apart from the trunks of secret virtue contained seeds. It looks unobtrusive and unassuming, but Qin Ye’s face was now flushed with greater excitement than ever before.
“Excellent stuff!” The previous look of dismay had gone with the wind, and he grabbed a handful of golden seeds with a glint of joy in his eyes, “This is the charm of establishing sea trade routes… Arakshasa, what were you saying earlier? Please continue.”
Humans have each their own pursuits. It was the same, whether in life, or in death.
The effluxion of time didn’t mean the diminishing of one’s pursuit for greater quality of life. On the contrary, one’s need for such luxuries would only increase precisely due to the increase in their lifespan. A single source of entertainment would only satiate one’s thirst for a period of time, but it would take much more for a person to feel fulfilled in life.
After all, wouldn’t it be too pitiful if, after death, one weren’t allowed to have a good, delectable meal from time to time?
Qin Ye didn’t know about other countries, but Cathay was a land that placed a huge emphasis on its culinary pursuits! The pursuit of taste was something that was better satisfied sooner rather than later. Besides… wasn’t it great to be presented the opportunity to unlock the agricultural skill tree right off the cuff?
Are you sure these seeds wouldn’t grow into strange things like bleeding fruits and other similarly strange things?