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"We're finally here." Ling Tian breathed out once comfortably. Smelling the scent of earth from afar, as well as looking at the scenery of the huge continent before him, Ling Tian was a little excited. To our young n.o.ble Ling Tian, the life on board was simply too boring. While the scenery offered by the sea and skies were enough to leave you intoxicated, you would still get tired of it after looking often, let alone every day and night. In addition, he had to stay beside a peerless beauty but was unable to satisfy his desires, and this made Ling Tian feel extremely suppressed. Even little Ling Tian was standing up straight every day in protest...
If it wasn't for the fact that Shui QianRou set down strict rules that all the Shui Family warriors were to remain below the deck and not come out, Ling Tian's life would be even more miserable.
Beside Ling Tian was a weirdly dressed Ling Jian, however, his back was still ramrod straight as always.
"Say, Ah'Jian, what expression do you think those kids will have the moment they see us?" Ling Tian laughed out as he breathed in the cool sea breeze.
"I believe they will immediately start crying." Ling Jian could also not control the smile slipping out from his lips.
"Really? How about we make a bet? I say that they will not cry, do you dare to bet with me? The loser will strip naked and run around the Heavenly Wind Continent, how about that?" Ling Tian sn.i.g.g.e.red as he held onto his chin, a weird light shining in his eyes.
"Nope." Ling Jian shivered once before shaking his head. What a joke, ever since young, he had never won a bet against this young n.o.ble before...
Run naked? Ling Jian's skin was not so thick. Secretly glancing at Ling Tian, he nodded his head with certainty. He believed that with the thickness of his young n.o.ble's skin, he would not turn red even if he were to strip naked and run around the Heavenly Wind Continent. Furthermore, with his current cultivation, even if he were to really run naked, who could actually even catch a glimpse of him?
The tiny black dot on the horizon gradually grew larger, and the shape of the fleet grew clearer in everybody's eyes as it neared the sh.o.r.e.
The Shui Family disciples had already formed two rows to stand on the two sides of the stone steps. This time, those from the Shui Family that had come were the elites and had undergone rigorous training. All of them were solemn and dignified, fully concentrated on the task at hand. HuangFu Jun even shamelessly went up to Shui ManCheng's side to line up, walking down together to await Shui QianRou's fleet of ships.
It was unsure if the Shui and HuangFu families were afraid of the Sky Alliance or that they were out of everyone's line of sight, but no one noticed that all of the Sky Alliance members had unknowingly gotten off their horses, standing quietly at the side. Their three masked heads all had emotional looks within their eyes as they gazed at the boat which had just stopped, as though waiting for a VIP.
Bugle horns of welcome resounded everywhere, as a peerless beauty walked out of the ship's hold like an immortal fairy exiting her dwelling. She elegantly took a step out, and even when faced with a thousand eyes on the sh.o.r.e staring at her, the iciness present on her face did not lessen one bit. She continued to exude the haughty demeanor of a n.o.ble lady, like the unrestrained clouds and sea, far beyond one's reach.
"We welcome the little princess back!" All of the Shui Family warriors raised their voices and shouted at once. The sound traveled out for miles.
A brief glimpse of pain flashed through Shui QianRou's eyes, as well as an ineffable sense of dreariness. Upon thinking of her dearest brother Shui QianHuan, who now lay alone in the cold six feet underground at Heavenly Star Continent, she could not help but sigh. Only after the pain had pa.s.sed did she finally step down slowly. All the warriors of the Shui Family on board the ship were extremely excited, the sight of their homeland filling their eyes. They followed behind Shui QianRou as they descended, packed like sardines.
Under Ling Tian's workings, while the Shui Family had lost over 60% of their men in Heavenly Star, they had finally set down a foundation inside the continent in return. Furthermore, they had received the acknowledgment of the local power, the Ling Family, and so they could be considered to have fulfilled their ancestors' wishes in a certain manner. Just based on this merit, no matter the number of men they sacrificed, it was no longer important.
Shui ManCheng was furious in his heart. However, he could be considered a wily old fox, as his face did not even reveal half of his thoughts or expressions. He walked out from the cheering crowd, and warmly called out, "Niece QianRou must have suffered in his journey. Going all the way to Heavenly Star, engaging in numerous battles and then constructing a rock solid foundation over there, your merits are undeniably high. This calls for a celebration!"
Shui QianRou lightly bowed at the waist as she replied, "I thank Third Uncle for his praise. To toil for a foundation is for the future descendants of the Shui Family, so how could I dare to claim credit for myself! To think that Third Uncle would actually come personally to welcome QianRou when she returns really fills me with grat.i.tude. Furthermore, on this journey, we've lost many an elite disciple and soldier, so how could QianRou be able to accept any sort of praise? Cousin QianJiang even unfortunately lost his life due to an a.s.sa.s.sination over there. Every time I think of it, I feel as though there were a thousand knives cutting through my heart. I'm unable to fully convey the pain I feel."
The facial muscles on Shui ManCheng's face kept twitching violently as his eyes grew sharp. He clenched his teeth before revealing a bright smile, but it got twisted somehow to look ferocious instead. From the countless letters sent back, how could he not know the exact circ.u.mstances behind his son's death? If anyone dared say that Shui QianRou had no part in it, he would definitely not believe it! However, right now he was hearing Shui QianRou speak of it in such a carefree tone, so how could he not have hatred in his heart?
"QianJiang sacrificed himself for his family, that was only natural. Rou'er, don't put it in your heart. While this Third Uncle here might grieve, I'm actually proud of him." Within Shui ManCheng's level tone, a hint of killing intent leaked out, as though it could not be suppressed.
"That's right. But for cousin QianJiang to pa.s.s on without even leaving a descendant for Third Uncle, just leaving for the yellow springs, even the heavens pity you." Shui QianRou spoke in a voice filled with guilt.
When it came to the topic of having no one to succeed his family line, Shui ManCheng finally could hold it in no longer. His face was black as a thundercloud, and he almost vomited blood in anger. It was only through hyperventilating a few times did he finally calm himself down to say, "It must have been a hard journey on your way back, so let's return to our place early for a rest. If there's anything to report, we can put it off till later."
Shui QianRou nodded in reply, "Third Uncle is right. Any matters will be cleared in the future." As she spoke, she walked down with her head held high.
Shui ManCheng's face was ashen as he suddenly asked in a sinister tone, "Why is there only niece present? Did QianHuan not return this time?"
A painful smile tugged on the corners of her mouth. Shui QianRou halted but did not turn around, instead softly replying, "Elder brother's wounds are serious. Luckily, heaven had blessed him well enough to be taken away by Heavenly Justice of the Beyond Heavens Sect for treatment. I believe it will not be long before he returns. As for what belongs to him, others need not think about it, neither will it be much use to do so." After saying these words she suddenly turned around, two cold beams of light shining from her eyes. Just like Shui ManCheng, hers were full of killing intent!
Both uncle and niece stared at each other, not breaking eye contact. From each other's eyes, they could see the deep grudge and hatred each party had for each other!
It was only after a long time that Shui QianRou snorted and broke the contact. She turned around and walked away with light steps. Shui ManCheng was left there, his fists balled up. When he went down the stone steps, his feet left indents in the hard rock.
"Shui... Miss Shui, you're finally back?" A pleasantly surprised and slightly incoherent speech sounded out suddenly. "I... I believe that you must have suffered."
Shui QianRou's face sank, and she did not even bother putting up with the pretenses as she snapped, "Young n.o.ble HuangFu, please show some respect. Am I someone you can casually mention just like that?"
HuangFu Jun was originally dizzy with happiness, but after hearing the snappish tone in Shui QianRou's voice in such a crowded venue, this was obviously not giving him any face whatsoever! His face turned dark, and he couldn't help angrily replying, "Sister Rou, you might not be aware of this, but Uncle Shui has already agreed to our marriage. Me coming to fetch you today is through the consent of your father. In the near future, my house will prepare the betrothal gift, and we will be wed as husband and wife. What sort of words can I not say?"
"Get wed? Are you still dreaming?! Are you even worthy?!!" Shui QianRou let out a derisive laugh and continued in a disgusted tone, "HuangFu Jun, stop having the dreams of a fool. It's impossible for me to agree to this betrothal and marriage! Even if all the other men in this world were to perish, I still would not choose to marry such an obscene person like you!" A cold smile then surfaced on her face as she added in disdain, "Did you think those b.l.o.o.d.y atrocities you commit in secret would really be hidden forever?"
HuangFu Jun's handsome face turned totally red, but he had no way to argue back. He had been blessed with good looks, and for him, so long as he met someone which caught his eye, even if they locked themselves inside their rooms, or even had a partner, they would still be unable to escape from his evil clutches. He had destroyed quite a number of ladies in the past few years. In addition, because of the growing strength of his HuangFu Family the past few years, no one could control him, allowing him to get away scot-free. Right now, a venomous look shot through his eyes as he thought, Don't get too happy, s.l.u.t! The moment this daddy gets you into my family, when I press on top of your body, then you'll understand my prowess! However, his mouth sang a different tune, "Sister Rou, marriage is a big affair and is typically according to the wishes of our parents. Since the match has been decided, it is not something that either of us can interfere with any longer. Since your father has already agreed, then whether you have any opinions or disagreements, they're useless at this juncture."
If it was the past her, Shui QianRou would definitely panic at this point. However, knowing that Ling Tian was together with her in Heavenly Wind Continent, her heart was right now as stable as Mount Tai. How could she take the words of HuangFu Jun to heart? She only laughed out coldly as she retorted, "Is that so?" Before waiting for his reply, she had already brushed past him, walking far ahead.
Staring at her merciless back, grinding sounds came from the mouth of HuangFu Jun.
Forcibly restraining herself from turning back to look at that person's reaction, Shui QianRou chose to silently continue to walk ahead. She knew that right now, Ling Tian was probably no longer on the boat, and neither was he inside her own squad. Even if she were to turn her head now, she probably could no longer catch a glimpse of him.
After parting ways today, the next time we meet will probably be a month later, right? And this time, I will have to engage in the endless politics and mental battles back at home. Just the thought of it would make one weary! A sudden sense of sadness struck Shui QianRou.
The crowd that had just arrived on sh.o.r.e started to climb up their horses. As for Shui QianRou, she also straddled her own handsome white horse, slowly moving forward. HuangFu Jun had on a dark expression, as he carefully bid farewell to the heads of the Sky Alliance before shameless following behind Shui QianRou like a l.u.s.tful toad.
However, HuangFu Jun's heart was still filled with some happiness. To think that he actually was fortunate enough to come across the three mysterious heads of the Sky Alliance, and even leave some sort of impression with them! If he could take this relationship one step further, and get into their good books, most likely his family would rise in strength again! This time, when he returned home, he would immediately discuss this with his father.
The poor HuangFu Jun did not know that a pair of cold eyes had actually rested on him for a long time. Beside Tian ZhiYi, there was another black-robed man seated atop a horse, staring at HuangFu Jun the whole time. An interested look could be seen in his eyes, as he mumbled to himself, "HuangFu aristocratic family? The number two power of the Heavenly Wind Continent? This indeed sounds like an interesting toy! I originally thought that I would be bored to death here, but now I need not fear boredom!"
The three mysterious heads were accompanying the black-robed man, and when they heard his words, all of them exchanged an 'I knew this would happen' look with the others before laughing. Seeing at the receding back of HuangFu Jun, all three pairs of eyes looked at him as though they had seen a little puppy that they were free to bully!
If a knowledgeable person was present, they would have recognized at first glance that where the black-robed person was situated was exactly at the core of the leaders from the Sky Alliance! Furthermore, his current position of that black-robed man was such that no matter how he turned, his vision would not be blocked, but at the same time, they closed off any way that would allow a would-be a.s.sa.s.sin to reach the man.
If a professional a.s.sa.s.sin was to see this scene, they would immediately tell that the positions of the three leaders were that of bodyguards! And as for where each of their eyes were positioned, covering all directions, this showed just how high the status of the black-robed man was in their hearts!
What sort of person would have such a high rank that even the famed Sky Alliance of the Heavenly Wind Continent, as well as their most mysterious three leaders, would deign to act like slaves?
A sharp cry sounded, and the subordinates of Sky Alliance actually got onto their horses simultaneously, with uniform movements, everyone all sitting atop their horses with ramrod straight backs. Before they came, the three heads had already warned them that during this mission, they had to be at their best behavior and highest energy levels. If anyone were to embarra.s.s them, then they would only meet with the fate of being thrown out from the Sky Alliance!
In addition, this was the first time the three heads had treated a matter so seriously. All 800 of them were on tenterhooks, afraid that their performance would cause them to become guinea pigs. In the event that one of them was used to set an example and expelled from the Sky Alliance, he might as well commit suicide and be done with it.
It was unknown when it started, but the sky had darkened with heavy black clouds with arcs of lightning constantly flashing within them, as though heralding a storm of epic proportions. All 800 of them, however, remained unmoving atop their horses, awaiting the next command!
Looking at all of them, Tian ZhiYi was gratified. As he saw Ling Tian's eyes reveal a sense of appreciation, he finally relaxed some of the tension in his heart.
Ever since he reached the sh.o.r.e, Ling Tian had not addressed them once, causing Tian ZhiYi and his brothers to feel extremely pressured. They were unaware whether the young n.o.ble was unsatisfied with any area, but after looking into his eyes, the burden they felt was finally eased.
With a light smile on his face, Ling Tian nodded and galloped off, leading the pack. Directly behind him, Ling Jian was just like his shadow, only half a horse behind him as he followed closely!
Tian ZhiYi waved his whip, bellowing out, "Set off!" before following suit.
800 people were split into platoons of 100 each, all orderly following behind, and in an instant, the entire area was filled with the sound of hoofbeats like a thunderstorm. Great clouds of dust rolled up towards the sky! In less than a minute, they had actually caught up to the tail of the Shui Family members, and yet they seemed to have no intention to slow down.
Shui ManCheng already had some anger within his eyes, but after thinking about it, he weighed the costs and benefits before lifting up his whip and commanding the Shui Family members to shift towards the side, allowing the Sky Alliance members to pa.s.s.
Their millennium-old enemy, the Yu Family, was about to arrive. If they chose to offend the Sky Alliance at this time, it would be as good as signing their own death warrant!
Shui QianRou was not aware of the reason, and could not help but furrow her brows as she furiously asked, "Why should we give way to them?"
Shui ManCheng coldly laughed, as he indifferently replied, "Those three are the heads of the Sky Alliance! Do you want all of us to be buried here? If niece wishes to be skewered by them, then your third uncle here will not prevent your desire!"
"Sky Alliance!" Shui QianRou snorted coldly, but deep inside she felt a little sad. Since when was the Shui Family be reduced to even having to give away to others?
Her limpid eyes could not help but gaze furiously behind at the approaching troops, but after glancing at the lead figure, she only saw the rider look straight into her eyes before a mischievous twinkle shone as he suddenly flashed past her figure.
"Ah?!" Shui QianRou stood still in shock, so it turned out to be this detestable fellow! She hmphed in annoyance as she broke eye contact. Her meaning was simple: When I next meet you, I'll make sure you suffer! To think that this hateful guy had kept her in the dark for such a long time!
Closely tailing after the lead rider, another horse shot past without even making eye contact, but he left in his wake a biting chill, an awe-inspiring chill that penetrated to the heart.
"Eh?" Shui ManCheng looked on in shock at the two lead riders. How could it be that there were people who dared to be so brazen, overtaking the three heads of the Sky Alliance? Could it be that they were tired of living? Shui ManCheng would love to see how they would die!
Hoofbeats continuously sounded as the troops in the Sky Alliance increased in speed under the command of the three leaders. They resembled a huge black dragon, roaring as it soared through the skies. When they pa.s.sed by Shui QianRou, all three leaders uniformly cupped their fists in a show of respect before disappearing into the distance.
Shui QianRou's face turned red as she lowered her head. With her knowing the true ident.i.ties of the Sky Alliance's leaders, she clearly knew why they would show respect to her. It was not because of her ident.i.ty as the little princess of the Shui Family, but rather because it was a form of subordinates of her beloved paying respects to the Mistress upon meeting her for the first time. To think that they would be aware of such a matter even though they were situated so far away here in Heavenly Wind... could it be that the cold-faced a.s.sa.s.sin was the one with loose lips? A weird suspicion formed in Shui QianRou's heart, but try as she might, she could not envision the cold-blooded a.s.sa.s.sin who could not even show emotions to be a gossiper. If it wasn't him, then that would only leave the lecherous wolf himself. How could he be such a shameless p.r.i.c.k?
She suddenly saw a weird movement out of the corner of her eye and turned to look. What she saw was Shui ManCheng with a smile plastered all over his face, in the posture of cupped fists.
This Third Master Shui mistakenly thought the respects paid by the three leaders to their new Mistress was towards him as thanks, and could not help but have a proud expression suffuse his face. He boasted, "Look at this, while you weren't here, your third uncle has braved the lands, traveling far and wide. Who would dare not show respect to me? Even the three leaders of the Sky Alliance still had to pay their respects towards me!"
He had actually completely forgotten that it was precisely him who was so afraid of offending them just now that he commanded the troops to move towards the side!
Even though Shui QianRou was filled with disdain and anger towards her third uncle's behavior, she still could not help bursting into laughter at this scene. She had seen many shameless personages her entire life, but not one who had such a thick skin! This was akin to imagining that one's love was being reciprocated, right?
The area surrounding Jade River City was filled with undulating mountain ranges as well as thick forests. They served to completely shield the view of the area from the curious gazes of any pa.s.serby. While this place was only a mere 150 kilometers from the city, it could already be considered a dangerous no man's land that few dared to tread.
After leaving the official roads, the 800 troops were just like a thread of smoke as they weaved their way to this area. Only after they were separated more than 30 to 40 kilometers from the nearest village did they finally stop in their tracks.
Following the order of Tian ZhiYi, all troops dismounted and lined up into a phalanx formation. With the three Tian brothers in front, long unmasked, the three leaders first kneeled down before kowtowing on the ground.
"Ling One salutes Young n.o.ble!"
"Ling Two salutes Young n.o.ble!"
"Ling Four salutes Young n.o.ble!"
The troops behind them, who were still pulling straws to figure out the ident.i.ties of these two black-robed men were received a rude shock. They immediately followed suit, kneeling down and shouting out, "We salute Young n.o.ble, and we pray for his well-being!"
Ling Jian, who was closely following behind Ling Tian, immediately floated a few steps to the side as though his body was weightless, avoiding the salute.
"Rise, all of you." Ling Tian warmly laughed, "Number one, you really outdid yourself these past few years. You've far outstripped my original calculations. I'm impressed and extremely satisfied!"
"Many thanks to Young n.o.ble for your praise, this is merely my job." Tian ZhiYi (Ling One) kowtowed again in response, before solemnly standing up. Turning around, he looked at all his subordinates, before shouting out, "Brothers, this young n.o.ble in front of us is actually the true owner of the Sky Alliance, Young n.o.ble Ling Tian from the Heavenly Star Continent! He will also be the future owner of Heavenly Star! From today onwards, all of us, including myself, will have to follow the commands of our young n.o.ble unconditionally, without any hesitation! Furthermore, the news of our young n.o.ble coming over to Heavenly Wind Continent should be kept as the number one secret of Heavenly Wind Continent, without even the slightest leaks! Any person who disobeys will be executed!"
"Yes!" A uniform roar greeted him in response.
"Brothers, do you know why our name is called 'Sky Alliance'?" Since they had already introduced Ling Tian, the brain of the Sky Alliance now stepped up. "This is because, we are all the subordinates of Ling Tian, and thus we are the Sky Alliance! The 'sky' in our Sky Alliance, is not the sky of the heavens, but rather the 'sky' of our Young n.o.ble Ling Tian! Do you guys understand now?" 
"Understood!" All 800 voices echoed in unison, and one could see the flames of pa.s.sion in every single one of their eyes. Gazing at Ling Tian who was standing above them on a hill, every one of them could feel a sort of blazing pa.s.sion coming from their eyes. Even though they had not affirmed it all this while, but with the convenience of information gathering within them, the matter of young n.o.ble Ling Tian had long been universally heard among them.
Young n.o.ble Ling Tian breaking into the ranks of a 500,000 strong army just to save his father! Rushing straight into the armies, an outcome of sure death!
Young n.o.ble Ling Tian was even pursued by the unbeatable Martial Order Medallion owner, the number one expert Heavenly Justice, and finally managed to force him to revoke the millennium-old tradition of the martial order medallion!
Young n.o.ble Ling Tian, using the strength of one person, managed to topple a huge mountain peak, causing the course of river water to be reversed! Resulting in the defeat of the 400,000 strong army of the Xiao Family!
Young n.o.ble Ling Tian wiped out the Yang Family, killed the DongFangs, extinguished the XiMen, punished the NanGongs, slaughtered the Southern Zheng, and eliminated the Eastern Zhao...
All these matters, whether spoken or heard, were matters that would rouse the blood of anybody. The people from Sky Alliance had long accepted the miracles created, and the shameful matters of him chasing away over ten teachers when he was five years old to him going to the brothel when he was six for 'exploration' were all harshly dismissed.
Under such forms of influence, young n.o.ble Ling Tian had almost become some sort of superstar idol within the ranks of the Sky Alliance. Thus, upon seeing such a legendary figure in the flesh today, and furthermore knowing that this young n.o.ble was actually the leader that they had sworn loyalty to, made all the soldiers present immensely emotional.
One could say that the brainwashing and propaganda done by Ling One and the rest over the years towards Sky Alliance was an extremely successful case, with definite results. As for these 800 troops that were chosen to come out today, they were the backbone of the entire Sky Alliance. They definitely couldn't be more thoroughly brainwashed. As such, how could they not feel hot-blooded upon meeting the idol of their lives?!
A few of them were already breathing heavily with emotion. If not for the strict training regimen that they went through, they would probably already have broken ranks and rushed towards Ling Tian, asked for his autograph, shaking his hand, maybe even feeling around his whole body, appearing to leave some sort of their mark on him... cough cough...
"Brothers!" The moment Ling Tian opened his mouth, the whole area turned silent. Everyone felt as though Ling Tian's voice had sounded right beside their ears, as though he was personally talking to them. They subconsciously stuck out their chests in pride, straightening themselves even more as they gazed with adoration to where he was...
"From today onward, we're considered a family." Ling Tian secretly wiped the sweat off his hand upon seeing such a scene, before continuing, "During this period of time, you guys have been great! Even in Heavenly Star, I would receive snippets of news every now and then about you, and I've always been proud of your achievements! Let's leave the bullsh*t and pleasantries aside, and I'll sum everything up into one sentence. Our target from today onward is to trample the world under our feet, and make this entire world our own piece of heaven!"
"Generals and Ministers are not created without reason, all of them had to work for it! As for the aristocrats that they have to pay respects to, are they really better than us? Among you, how many of you people will become generals, become ministers in the end? Brothers, we'll all wait and see together just how many of our own brothers will be able to leave their names on the history books, through the sands of time, told to countless generations after! When this entire battle ends, every single one of you people will be immortalized in the history books of our dynasty, leaving your grand story to be told for ages to come!"
"Oh! Oh! Oh!...." Under the encouragement from Ling Tian, the 800 men were acted as though they had just consumed v.i.a.g.r.a, all getting excited.
After disseminating the order for all of them to retreat, the three leaders, Ling One, Two, and Four, guided Ling Tian and Ling Jian into Jade River City, where they removed their masks and traveling robes. All of a sudden, these three were not the mysterious heads of the Sky Alliance, but rather the richest and most powerful people within the city. They domineeringly booked out the most expensive restaurant in the city, the 'Leisure Jade River Restaurant', just to hold a welcoming party for Ling Tian and Ling Jian.
The current time was barely past noon, but the table was already laden with fine wines as well as all sorts of cuisines. All of them were even unique delicacies within Heavenly Wind Continent, such as beasts of the fields and birds of the air, exotic delicacies spread all over the place in a neat and tidy manner. Furthermore, there seemed to be a never-ending stream of dishes being sent up like water...
After three rounds of wine were pa.s.sed, everyone finally loosened up. The initial emotions they had felt upon seeing the young n.o.ble again also gradually calmed down.
Ling Tian was seated at the head with Ling Jian on his right. On the left was Ling One, and the order continued. Everyone sat in their positions, with only the five of them in this restaurant.
"Number One, I sent Nineteen and Twenty over here a while ago. Where are they now?" As Ling Tian dined, he casually asked.
"Those two brats are simply restless souls." On the mention of Ling Nineteen and Twenty, Ling One seemed to have gotten a headache. He groaned, "After they sent the skills over, they had no intention to leave this place anymore, saying it was under the orders of the young n.o.ble. Since you said it was an order, then just stay there quietly! But they just had to be the exact opposite, it's not like you don't know their characters, young n.o.ble. They seem to enjoy watching the world burn, and without fighting for a day, they would feel itchy and uncomfortable. After sharpening themselves in the war for so many years, they cannot even sit in tranquility for three days. They turned my entire place upside down, beating up all the brothers under me, and even claiming it was to help me to discipline them! My subordinates came running to me at all hours in those three days and two nights to grumble! In the end, I thought, since they liked to fight so much, I handed them all sorts of fighting tasks to fulfill, taking a great load off our minds..."
Everyone laughed at this point, and Ling One scratched his head in awkwardness before continuing with a laugh, "On the day young n.o.ble's letter arrived, we had just received a large order, and while escorting a convoy, we had actually gotten robbed! The two of them took off that very night to slaughter the whole bunch of them. We've just received news yesterday that the two of them had found leads, and are on the pursuit."
"Oh." Ling Tian nodded. Ling Jian on the other head interjected, "In other words, ever since the two of them came, the three of you have been lazing around, right? Your skills probably haven't improved a single bit as well, right?! The brothers under you have been trained by Nineteen and Twenty, but what about you guys?! Your original skills were much better than Nineteen and Twenty, so why can't you guys defeat them, furthermore when its three against two? Do you have a reason for me?!!"
"Cough cough cough..." The three of them immediately choked and went on a coughing fit. Their faces turned from red to white and then to green! Ling Two and Four hatefully stared at Ling One, cursing his big mouth and wishing nothing better than to beat him up.
"No problem, to laze around every now and then is actually natural. After all, you guys are now high ranking officials. I never had any intention to blame you guys." Ling Jian suddenly smiled in a hair-raising manner. "After we finish this meal, let me see how much you guys have progressed. En, I think I'll have a little spar with you guys, just to give some pointers."
"AH?!" The three of them almost fell out of their seats upon hearing the first half, but after the second half of the sentence was completed, the three looked as though their faces could turn into a shade of purple. What bullsh*t luck was this, one sentence and they actually received such a severe punishment! Ling Two and Four's gaze at Ling One became all the more unfriendly, with a clear meaning: D*mn you and your big mouth! Upon thinking of the beatings they suffered from Ling Jian in the early few years of their lives, the three couldn't help but shudder involuntarily.
Ling One sat there as though he was making preparations for a funeral. He could not wish to smack his own mouth, cheap, how cheap was his mouth! To blurt out everything so easily...
Sensing their pleading gazes on him, Ling Tian could not help but laugh out as he replied, "Alright, even if we want to spar, let's wait till after this meal. By then, you guys will have more strength. You guys, just willingly accompany your Jian'ge to spar, he has been suppressing his desire for battle throughout the entire journey here."
The three of them screamed inwardly. There seemed to be no hope left for them...
"By the way, how goes the progress at Mount Vacant Sky?" Ling Tian brought up the question that he was most interested in.
"Mount Vacant Sky has already become the property of the Shui Family and has turned into a forbidden ground for the whole of Heavenly Wind Continent. No one is allowed to trespa.s.s." Ling One sighed, "We initially thought that the Shui Family was planning something fishy within the mountain, but the two times we infiltrated the place, there was actually nothing out of the ordinary. However, we were unable to make it all the way to the deepest recesses, so if there are any discrepancies, I'll apologize to the young n.o.ble in advance."
"It's like this?!" Ling Tian asked in curiosity. Why was this so? Could it be that the Shui Family was aware that Mount Vacant Sky held some secret? Ling Tian stroked his chin as he asked, "Unable to thoroughly check the place?... It's nothing, there might not be anything present in the area. At that time, I also mentioned it out of convenience! It's just that.... based on your observations, which part of the mountain was the most tightly guarded?"
Ling Four knew that since the young n.o.ble had asked, then there had to be some sort of reason behind it. While he said that he only asked out of convenience, it was merely a show to ease the anxiety of the three of them. He thus pulled aside a plate of fish and began to draw a map instead. "Young n.o.ble, please look. There are three peaks on Mount Vacant Sky, and they form a '品' formation. If we take this fish as an example, then the head of the fish would be the east while the tail would face west. On both sides, they are not very strictly guarded, so long as one's movement techniques are profound enough, one can forcibly infiltrate the area and return. However, no one has tried going deeper. I believe in the deepest recesses, there would be at least seven to eight layers of traps, and unless we choose to launch an all-out attack, otherwise...
"The middle peak?" Ling Tian opened his eyes wide. The Shui Family is tightly guarding the middle peak? This is really the heavens aiding me!" He shook his head and laughed out, looking overjoyed.
Following this, Ling One, Two and Four talked about the difficulties and strange observations that they had made throughout their years here in Heavenly Wind. Ling Tian listened with gusto, and before long, it was already the evening.
Having met after so long, and with much experiences to share from both parties, even Ling Jian had long forgotten that he wanted to whip Ling One, Two and Four back into shape. However, the sudden sound of hoofbeats broke the calm atmosphere, causing everyone on the street to exclaim. Ling Tian frowned, for directly outside was the most prosperous and busy street of Jade River City, and the crowd never thinned. For someone to use such a speed on a horse, he was as good as not putting the lives of the commoners in his eyes.
 The Tian in Ling Tian is the word for Sky.