The Veluriyam Sect was also one of the ten great factions of the ancient times. It was on par with the Primosanct and even more. Their lingering heritages was indirect proof of that.
Supported by the Veluriyam Pagoda, Veluriyam Capital had persisted to the present day. Because it hadn't inherited most of the other facets of the ancient Veluriyam Sect, Veluriyam Capital wasn't a real successor. This was true in both public perception and fact.
Still, there was an undeniable connection between the two. The Pagoda was on Capital land after all. The city retained ownership rights to the complex as additional evidence.
"Attack Veluriyam Capital?" Elder Peng's facial muscles tensed. "Seventh Master, are you planning to break with Jiang Chen completely?"
The two elders' conservative natures didn't allow them to support that course of action. Unfortunately, they'd been brainwashed into following the seventh master's word as law.
This was despite conventional wisdom informing them of the foolishness in entering this conflict now; after all, the human domain openly supported Jiang Chen's leadership. There was no buffer of forgiveness between the attack on the city and public opinion.
Truthfully, Elder Peng hadn't supported such actions from the start. Alas, the seventh master couldn't be swayed. Their young charge's mind made up, they couldn't actively voice their opposition at the present time.
"Elder Peng, what do you think my chances are in attacking on Veluriyam Capital?" The seventh master smiled. "In recent years, I've gathered quite a few human great emperors to my side. If I push the numerical advantage by deploying all of them at once, I think I'll have a pretty good shot - as long as Jiang Chen brings his main force to reinforce the Ninesuns Sky Sect."
"They've just formed the alliance. They can't abandon Ninesuns just like that. What would be the point of the alliance at all otherwise?"
"Yes, Jiang Chen has no choice."
The seventh master clapped cheerfully. "When I take over Veluriyam Capital and seize control of it, that kid'll be too late even if he runs back!"
He was excited just thinking about occupying the core of the human domain.
Veluriyam Capital was a place of ancient heritage, containing a sacred place as legendary as the Pagodas. Most importantly, they had heard that Veluriyam Capital had a tradition of holding Veluriyam Pagoda Meetings every sixty years.
Regrettably, no genius from Veluriyam had achieved a breakthrough at the meeting, leaving the ancient sect's heritage buried still. This meant that there was plenty of virgin ground for them to uncover!
Even though the seventh master and his two servants came from Myriad Abyss Island, the heritage of the ancient Veluriyam Sect was quite alluring to them.
He'd delegated six of his eight Protector Kings out on various tasks. Two remained at headquarters. There were plenty of Celestial Stars and Earthly Fiends available, though. He had stationed them close by in order to attack Veluriyam Capital together. He was avoiding a direct attack in the open in order to provoke Jiang Chen.
When Veluriyam's young lord foolishly believed that the battlefield would be at the Ninesuns Sky Sect, the young master would be off elsewhere demolishing Veluriyam Capital's base of operations.
"Elder Peng, Elder Mo, I must rely on your assistance for our sortie on Veluriyam Capital." Though the seventh master was displeased by everything about Jiang Chen, he had to concede that the other youth was the only one who posed a threat in the human domain.
In particular, the eight stone golems and the Vermilion Bird near him were extremely recent advantages - a fact that made the seventh master exceedingly upset. Those opportunities belonged to him!
"We will do everything we can. If Veluriyam doesn't have the stone golems and the Vermilion Bird, the great emperors garrisoned there won't be worth much. We can strike them down with ease."
'However' was a word anathema to most plans in the world. It tended to be followed by difficult problems.
"However what? Out with it." The seventh master couldn't resist urging.
"However, no one has been able to fully comprehend the Veluriyam Pagoda since time immemorial. Maybe it really is waiting for that fated someone. It may not be wise to brute force our way in." Elder Peng was being perfectly honest. It would be a crime if harm were to befall the seventh master in the process.
"We descendants of the ancients are superior to these native pigs ten times over! With our talents, how could we not be the fated ones?"
The seventh master's tone was steeped in confidence. It was as if he was some kind of destined ruler, descending upon the human domain. The two elders kept their mouths shut in the presence of their master's determination. He was liable to get mad if they opposed him any further.
The Order of the Wind and Cloud mobilized once more.
Every high ranking member still within the headquarters appeared within ten breaths of the command. They were all curious what important matter the supreme lord had to announce this time.
"My friends, it is time for us to put our skills to the test." The supreme lord spoke forth. "There is an opportunity before us, one that can enrich each and every one of you if we take advantage of it. I guarantee that after this sortie, you will have passed the test of loyalty. The Exultation Pill of Wind and Order will be removed from your bodies once it is complete. From now on, you will be considered my most trusted subordinates!"
The removal of the Exultation Pill garnered everyone's interests.
Protector King Scourcloud's eyes moved around when he heard what the supreme lord had said. He was rather curious what the leader had in mind this time.
"I will give you half a day to prepare. This afternoon, we will embark at the appointed time. There is a tough battle ahead of us. Prepare yourselves both physically and mentally!"
"Supreme Lord, what are we…"
"Yes, Supreme Lord. Where are we going?"
There were plenty of questions in the crowd to go around. The people wanted to know more.
The supreme lord smiled. He wanted to keep his subordinates guessing. "I'll tell you when we're almost there. This time, I'm leading the charge personally. Besides all of you, I have asked two empyrean experts to accompany us."
The so-called accompanying experts were Elders Mo and Peng, of course. They were his finest lieutenants, and absolutely necessary in his attack on Veluriyam. The ordinary Order members murmured amongst themselves when they heard the announcement about their too-capable helpers.
As expected of the supreme lord. Two empyrean experts backing them up? There was no way they would fail this time, whatever they set out to do!
"Devourcloud, Scourcloud, on my orders! I command you to lead our troops on the expedition this day!"
The two protector kings stood up one after the other.
The Order's forces secretly embarked right after noon.
Because their target today was Veluriyam Capital, the seventh master repeatedly instructed his soldiers to take care in concealing themselves on the way.
Scourcloud was the vanguard of the expedition. He and Devourcloud took to the group's forefront along with a few Celestial Stars. It was quite obvious that the latter's loyalties laid strictly with the Order's supreme lord.
"The supreme lord is being rather mysterious this time. Our mission is presumably of great importance," remarked Devourcloud.
Scourcloud was silent. He too wanted to know where the supreme lord intended to attack this time, too. The other, more capable protector kings had been sent out on other missions.
He and Devourcloud were the two protector kings ordinarily given the fewest tasks. Strangely, they'd been picked to participate in this covert operation.
The route seemed a bit directionless, but more careful perusal revealed a chilling conclusion. "Is the supreme lord going to attack Veluriyam Capital?"
Protector King Scourcloud considered the details a bit more. Though they constantly took detours, the aim of the expedition was unmistakable. It was definitely Veluriyam Capital they were heading towards!
The astonishing thought made the protector king very anxious.
No, anywhere but Veluriyam Capital! Scourcloud was thoroughly distressed. I must think of a way to notify the city so that they can prepare in advance!
The more he thought about it, the more things became clear.
The reason the other protector kings had been sent out was to attract Jiang Chen's attention. More specifically, the supreme lord intended everyone to think that the Order was aiming for the Ninesuns Sky Sect in a concerted strike. His real goal was Veluriyam Capital!
Protector King Scourcloud was apprehensive about the supreme lord's methods. His skillful and clever actions were essentially perfect.
It would be a lie to say that Scourcloud wasn't tense about this turn of events. Veluriyam Capital was sacred to him. He wouldn't allow others to trample on it, the Order of Wind and Cloud included!
Protector King Devourcloud seemed to notice his emotional turbulence. "Daoist Scourcloud, what are you thinking about?"
Scourcloud recovered himself. "Nothing," he smiled wryly. "I was simply thinking about matters within the Order. I lost track for a moment."
"Oh? What did you think about, fellow daoist? Can you share?" Protector King Devourcloud showed an inclination to pursue everything to the end.
"Idle thoughts not worth speaking about," Scourcloud retorted coolly.
Devourcloud cackled. "Daoist Scourcloud, many people in the order say that you are cold and aloof. According to them, you don't feel like you belong. But I think the supreme lord places a lot of expectation upon you. Clearly, this mission is a cut above the rest."
Scourcloud had no time or inclination to squabble with him. He was intent on finding out how to send a message to Veluriyam Capital instead.
A transmission via consciousness? That wasn't hard, but the supreme lord was more than attentive enough to notice right away. If that happened, his undercover identity would be done for.