Chapter 676: The Sacred Sword Palace Betrayal
Jiang Chen? This name triggered a faint memory in Sect Head Qin Mo’s heart. When one reached his level of cultivation, it was no big deal to remember everything they’d heard, no matter how miniscule the detail. Not to mention, this particular tidbit of a name had fallen from the Great Scarlet Emperor’s lips. However, he remembered clearly that this kid was supposed to be trapped in Mt. Rippling Mirage. Was there an error in their intelligence? His heart began to grow agitated without warning. Somehow, it was difficult for him to repress those feelings.
“You’re called Wang Han, correct? Are you sure that Jiang Chen is in the Paramount Realm?” Even at his age, Qin Mo wasn’t entirely capable of keeping his composure. After all, Jiang Chen was someone that the emperor had personally expressed his desire for. He had even sent his trusted confidante at the head of the strongest sects, Dragonslayer and Flowing Sands, to Mt. Rippling Mirage. Their only mission was to seek and bring back Jiang Chen.
This alone spoke volumes as to how much the emperor valued Jiang Chen. How great of an accomplishment would it be if he, Qin Mo, were to capture this kid? He immediately threw all thought of the Regal Pill Palace and other nonsense to the back of his head. There was only one goal left in his mind, and that was Jiang Chen!
Wang Han was well versed in observing people, and he spared no words when he saw the sect head paying great attention to him. “My Lord, this is absolutely true. Everyone had thought that Jiang Chen was still in Mt. Rippling Mirage, but who would’ve imagined the oddity this kid could be. He found a crack in the formation and managed to sneak out. That kid’s always had this kind of freaking ridiculous luck.”
Sect Head Mo Qin was pretty much convinced at this point. Fantastic, utterly fantastic. To think that what I was searching for for so long was delivered right into my hands! He clapped Wang Han’s shoulder, “Wang Han, is it? You’re not bad. One who tailors their actions to the situation are nothing less than wise. I am of a mind to take you in as a disciple. You know what to do, don’t you?”
Wang Han was delighted to hear this, “Disciple Wang Han greets honored master!”
He immediately knelt down and kowtowed to the sect head, every action dripping with sincerity. As he rose to his feet, he slapped his chest, “Honored master, your disciple would like to personally lead the way and enter the Paramount Realm to kill Jiang Chen!”
Sect Head Mo Qin laughed heartily, “Good, good! I was waiting for these words.”
If it’d been any other time and the Paramount Realm hadn’t been open, even Qin Mo might not have been able to open the seal. At the very least, he’d have to pay an exceedingly high price in order to do so, a trade-off that was obviously not worth it. However, the Paramount Realm opened for nine days every thirty years, and at this time, there was no price to pay in order to enter.
“Heh heh, congratulations Daoist Qin Mo.”
“To think that you really would have the desire to take in a disciple!” The black clad Sect Head Xing of the Qitian Sect and golden clad Sect Head Fu of the Golden Glyph Sect both came forward to tender their good wishes. Sect Head Leng of the Bamboo Sect remained silently off on the side, his face dark.
Sect Head Qin Mo spoke faintly, “This Wang Han is my personal disciple in the future. You cannot look at him in the same way again.”
“Naturally. congratulations sage nephew Wang. You’re lucky to catch the eye of Daoist Qin Mo. Those who suit their actions to the times are wise, aren’t they!”
“Sage nephew Wang, you need to do much to prove yourself to your new master!”
Wang Han was so delighted that flowers were blooming in his heart when he saw how politely these two emperor realm cultivator were in speaking to him. He felt that he had made a decision that was wise beyond parallel. The scene however, caused those of the Myriad Domain to go slack jawed with astonishment. Some with more fiery tempers began cursing him loudly.
“You shameless thing! Taking a thief for your master!”
“Wang Han, you really are the shame of your Wang family! You’ve thrown away all of the Sacred Sword Palace’s dignity!”
Some even jeered at Wang Jianyu directly, “Wang Jianyu, so this is your direct descendent, hmm?”
Wang Jiangyu’s expression was black; he really didn’t have a response to any of this. It was rather Wang Han who sent a silent message to Sect Head Qin Mo, “Honored master, it is the fortune of three lifetimes that this disciple is able to take you for my master. However, some of the Sacred Sword Palace are good fighters. I would seek to toil on behalf of my master and recruit them into our Zither Sect.”
Wang Han didn’t have many feelings for others, but Wang Jianyu was his grandfather and they shared the same blood. He naturally couldn’t just hang the sect head out to dry, or it really would become a blot on his life. Leaving the sect in search of higher status was a sight often seen in the world of martial dao.
Sect Head Qin Mo smiled, “You are my disciple from now on, so I will naturally give you a chance. It’s up to you how many you are able to convince. But remember, I want loyal people. They can give up any ideas of plotting after joining my Zither Sect, or else…”
“Please be at peace, honored master, those who recognize the greater picture they reside in are wise. If they persist in their delusions, then it is simply a function of their blindness.” Wang Han turned to Wang Jianyu, “Sect Head, I’ve already made my plea on everyone’s behalf, and those from the Sacred Sword Palace who are willing to change their allegiance can come over. Remember, a change in allegiance means full loyalty. Those who have other ties need not come over. You have only one chance, and those who have yet to walk over after I’ve counted to ten will be viewed as enemies of my Zither Sect. They will be killed without exception!”
His words of “my Zither Sect” made everyone on the Myriad Domain side break out in loud curses as numbness crept over their scalp. They were obviously been disgusted by Wang Han’s shamelessness.
“Go on, Wang Jianyu, go worship your grandson’s stinking foot!”
“How utterly disgusting! The Sacred Sword Palace is full of cowards!”
“Pah! Traitors! You guys yapped every day on how the Regal Pill Palace is colluding with outside enemies, but in the end, you’re the most spineless ones!”
Verbal abuse rained down from the Myriad Domain side. Everyone’s emotions were running high to begin with in this tense environment, and their rage was palpable. The kind of despair one felt when death was staring at them in the face made everyone vent their emotions in a very extreme sort of way.
Wang Jianyu’s face was dark as he walked out of the cluster of Myriad Domain cultivators. He had only taken a moment to think. “Those who are willing to follow the Zither Sect, step forth. I will not force those who are not willing.”
He had sized up the situation and knew that death was a foregone conclusion if they stubbornly dug their heels in. Although he greatly detested the idea of being under someone’s roof, he had no reason not to surrender now that his own grandson had already done so.
His actions blew the rest of the Sacred Sword Palace away. They could understand Wang Han’s betrayal, but the sect head had also turned traitor, just like that! Second genius of the Sacred Sword Palace Jing Fong couldn’t help himself any longer, “Wang Jianyu, is this how you and your grandson stays loyal to the Sacred Sword Palace heritage?!”
Wang Jianyu hadn’t thought that the younger generation would be so bold as to judge him, instead of the elders. He stared coldly at Jing Fong, “Only the strong have the right to talk of heritage. Do you actually think yourself worthy?”
Jing Feng was enraged beyond thinking, “Wang Jianyu, we can’t stop you and your grandson from going over to the enemy, but put down the sacred sword on your back! That is the sword of legacy that belongs to the Sacred Sword Palace. You may have surrendered, but the heritage of the Sacred Sword Palace has not fallen!”
His words were met with great applause, but a trickle of people began to flow from the Sacred Sword Palace as more and more people began to take their place by Wang Jianyu’s side. It was apparent that they were planning switching allegiances as well. Jing Feng watched the numbers by his side dwindle until there was only one veteran elder left. He was quite touched, “Elder Ming, you’re the one with the truest principles alright!”
The veteran elder suddenly grinned and smashed his fist into Jing Feng’s chest without warning. Jing Feng didn’t even have time to cry out before the fist crashed into his dantian. Bam!
He was flung backwards like a kite with a cut string. The elder moved like lightning, catching up to the flying body and beheading Jing Feng in one ruthless slash. He turned to walk over to Wang Han with a fawning expression, “Young master Han, that idiot Jing Feng didn’t recognize the greater picture. I’ve already executed him for you.”
Wang Han had had good relations with Jing Feng before, but the latter had just insulted him and his grandfather just now. Wang Han felt that he’d lost quite a great deal of face and so naturally didn’t sympathize with Jing Feng. “You’ve done well,” Wang Han nodded slightly and walked up to the Zither sect head. “Honored master, only this one was blind. We’ve already taken care of him.”
Sect Head Qin Mo smiled, almost disinterested, as he looked at Elder Ming, “What’s your name?”
“In response to the lord sect head, this humble one is Ming Wangyu. I am willing to serve the sect master.”
Sect Head Qin Mo nodded slightly, and his casual tone dropped to freezing levels, “You can kill those of your own sect today, so how do I know you won’t kill any of my Zither Sect tomorrow? What use does my Zither Sect have for such a heartless person?”
Ming Wangyu was scared out of his mind when he heard this. A cold light flashed by as Sect Head Qin Mo strummed a chord that sang a sword-like note. Before Elder Ming knew it, his head had separated from his body, flying into the sky. The elder’s body fell to the ground with a thud. Killing someone was as easy as crushing an ant to Qin Mo. He swept his gaze across Wang Jianyu and the others, “Remember, my Zither Sect does not take in trash, especially not trash with wavering loyalties. You can request protection from the Zither Sect, but you must show your sincerity to let me know that you are not trash.”
Wang Jianyu hurriedly responded, “Your subordinate is willing to lead the charge into the formation for the Zither Sect and take down these stubborn, short-sighted fools!”
Sect Head Qin Mo waved his hand, but didn’t say anything else. He turned to walk over to the other three emperor realm cultivators. “Everyone, the sect that slipped away earlier was the Regal Pill Palace. As far as our intel indicates, it is highly likely that they have precious treasures on their person. While I would like to chase after them myself, I cannot abandon the situation here. So I leave this chance to one of you. Who amongst you would like to go after them?”
The Regal Pill Palace? They were familiar with this name. The emperor had emphasized it before they left, mentioning that there were many sky rank spirit herbs to be found on them. Thus, the other three sects were greatly tempted.
Sect Head Qin Mo smiled faintly, “According to the intelligence, there are certainly sky rank spirit herbs on them and even more earth rank spirit herbs. If none of you wish to go, I can trouble myself to go after them too.”
He was playing a tactic of advancing while retreating. Indeed, Sect Head Leng of the Bamboo Sect immediately spoke up, “I’ll go. They broke through the southeastern corner—the territory that my Bamboo Sect was defending. It was my sect that committed this oversight, and naturally I should personally go to fix it. How can I ask anyone else to clean up after our mess?”
This was a righteous and noble sounding reason, but everyone knew that he was going because of the Regal Pill Palace’s sky rank spirit herbs.
“Sect Head Leng, your sect made the mistake, but who knows if you can truly fix it or not? In my opinion, let my Qitian Sect go,” Sect Head Leng eager volunteered.
“Heh heh, when it comes to tracking, the tracking glyphs that my sect produces are the best. Let my sect go.”
The three began to argue heatedly. A cushy job like this was much better than staying here and fighting against the stubborn Myriad Domain powers.