The man that bolted out suddenly, took hold of Wu Qi, and self-exploded, was an Earth Immortal of early-stage Nascent Soul realm. He was a Ghost Immortal who practiced the cultivation technique of ghost cultivators. His body was shrouded in a ghostly and deadly aura, and every single hair of his contained an extremely poisonous ghost flame. Unlike the Ghost Immortal Imperial Guards secretly trained by Great Yan's Imperial Palace, this Ghost Immortal was a half-human and half-ghost being. His body existed between corporeal and incorporeal, as half of his body was composed entirely of ghostly energy. Therefore, the power of the self-explosion was incredible.
Wu Qi was caught unprepared, and hence allowed the Ghost Immortal to come too close to him. Fearing the self-explosion of this guy would hurt Yan Bugui and the rest of the people, he quickly sped away with a sword beam. Barely ten miles into the flying, the guy had self-exploded, throwing deadly poison, evil energy, and the shrill ghost howl that could attack one's soul directly, at him, enveloping him tightly within. They were about to tear his body, crush him to shreds, melt him into a puddle of poisonous fluid, then burn him into ashes with the ghostly flame.
There was not enough time for the innate earth element dragon scale shield to be activated. However, the Black Dragon Spirit Ring worn on Wu Qi's finger responded right on time. A dragon cry was heard coming from the ring, immediately followed by countless pitch-black dragon scales that shot out from the face of the ring. They attached tightly to Wu Qi's body, transforming into a solid and sturdy dragon-scale body armor. Large patches of halo rolled and flickered on the surface of the armor, while the densely arranged patterns on the surface of the dragon scales ripped and tore the tremendous shockwave into shreds, one bit at a time. They pushed the shockwave off Wu Qi's body, and prevented it from causing too much of damage to him.
Wu Qi's body trembled at a very fast rate. The immense shockwave set his head reeling and made him nearly faint. The self-activated Black Dragon Spirit Ring had protected him, and he had been meticulously cultivating the Dragon Transformation Script over the last three years, slowly improving the strength of his fleshly body. But, with a Nascent Soul Earth Immortal clinging on him and self-exploding, it still made him cough blood and see stars dancing in his eyes, while his internal organs were tumbling up and down, as if they were about to shoot out from his mouth.
Fortunately, he still had an immortal item with him - the Spirit-Restricting Rope. Its item spirit had long cultivated into a spirit immortal. Although it did not have a fleshly body or a Dharma body, and existed only in the form of a spirit immortal, it was, after all, an immortal item. A purple beam shot out from Wu Qi's left wrist. Like a flood dragon, it twisted violently around Wu Qi, crushing over eighty percent of the energy turbulences caused by the self-explosion of that Nascent Soul Earth Immortal. After that, a nebulous humanoid figure revealed itself from the Spirit-Restricting Rope, with both hands performing an incantation and casting a spell, that quickly calmed down the restless and violent shockwave in the atmosphere.
If the Spirit-Restricting Rope did not take the initiative and eased off the shockwave, the self-explosion of a Nascent Soul Earth Immortal would turn an area one hundred miles in circumference into the finest powder, killing Yan Bugui and the others in an instant. After calming down the energy turbulences in the void, the item spirit returned to Spirit-Restricting Rope. The purple beam dimmed down and flew back to Wu Qi's left wrist, turning back into a fine line.
Wu Qi threw his head back and gave a furious roar, "B*stard, don't let me know who are you!! Or I will...!!"
Among the few bright beams that shot down from the sky at high speed, the surprised cry of Duke of Long Yang was heard suddenly, "Aye, isn't this Duke of Tianyun? Why are you in such a sorry state? Stop, everyone stop! This is Duke of Tianyun of Great Yan Dynasty... He is... Great Wei's ally!"
The bright beam vanished, revealing the elegant, seductive, and fascinating Duke of Long Yang, as he stepped on a jade colored silk handkerchief and descended slowly from the sky, face blooming with a bright smile. Upon looking at his stature, his bearing, and the silk handkerchief, which was an upper-grade magical treasure, for some unknown reasons, Wu Qi's flesh felt creeping immediately. He retracted the dragon-scales body armor transformed from Black Dragon Spirit Ring, spat out a mouthful of blood, and then flew staggeringly back to Yan Bugui and the others.
Gold Horn and Silver Horn were clever and sensible. When the explosion occurred, two great pythons immediately darted out like two great rainbows. Gold Horn coiled itself up and protected Yan Bugui and a few people from Scouting Office behind its long body, while Silver Horn rushed over to protect Li Yifeng and Zi Qianyan. When the Ghost Immortal self-exploded, a huge amount of broken rocks blotted the sky and smashed at them, hitting the bodies of two great pythons and producing many bright sparks. However, Yan Bugui, Li Yifeng, and Zi Qianyan were not hurt by them. Nevertheless, some of the secret agents from Scouting Office either had their arms or legs broken, or were rolled up by the wild wind and sent several miles away. Those were just some minor injuries which were not worth mentioning.
After throwing a bottle of healing spirit pills to Yan Bugui, Wu Qi rolled his eyes and looked at Duke of Long Yang. He then spoke with a cold smile on his face, "Sir, was the guy who just self-exploded one of your men?"
Duke of Long Yang immediately shook his head, his face turning pale with fright. Finally, he landed on the ground with the silk handkerchief below his feet, after which it immediately transformed into a colorful cloud and flew into his sleeve. He gracefully walked over and looked glumly at Wu Qi, then breathed out a long sigh and said, "What kind of person does Duke Wu Qi think Long Yang is?" Then, he gave Yan Bugui a glance, giggled and said, "Long Yang can swear to Heaven that there is absolutely no relationship between that man and Long Yang. But, I do know that Zhao Ta is followed by two Ghost Immortals!"
"Zhao Ta?" Wu Qi gave Duke of Long Yang a glare.
Standing beside them, Yan Bugui lightly shook his head, trying to get rid of the dizziness caused by the explosion, while he hurriedly said, "Zhao Ta is the son of Great Zhao's Emperor, conferred as Marquis Zhuang. When we were retreating from the village just now, I saw him bring some people with him and rush out of the village. He should be hiding in the village just now."
Duke of Long Yang smiled gladly and said, "And so, Captain Yan can testify that Long Yang is innocent. I have no idea about the background of this Ghost Immortal, but I know he had been following Zhao Ta since three years ago. Originally, Long Yang brought some men to that village to kill Zhao Ta, but who knew he had already left with his men. Even the Chief Commander of the Imperial Army was nowhere to be found. Little did I know that Ghost Immortal had already come here to assassinate Duke Wu Qi."
Wu Qi bowed his head slightly and sunk into a deep thought.
He raised his head up after some moments, smiled and said, "Well, I think I know who that guy is! Now sir, is there anything you wish to tell me?"
Duke of Long Yang gave an appreciative glance at Wu Qi, then he turned to give Yan Bugui a look, and finally said, "It is actually not something private and secret. According to some information found out by Great Wei's military council, the people of Great Zhao think the person who killed Zhao Ling in Cang Ao Immortal Abode is somehow related to Duke Wu Qi, and the man who framed Lu Buwei is, in fact, Duke Wu Qi."
Wu Qi was startled, then he burst out into laughter while saying, "Why do they utter such things? Wu Qi only has a cultivation base of Gold Core realm. How is it even possible for me to kill someone wantonly in the Cang Ao Immortal Abode?"
Duke of Long Yang spread his arms, expressing his lack of information as to why Great Zhao and Lu Buwei could be so firm with the finding. In the meanwhile, his words made Yan Bugui's face flicker. As the Captain of Scouting Office's secret agents, his sense for intelligence was extraordinary. There was something in Duke of Long Yang's words that was worth further investigation, especially how Great Wei was able to obtain Great Zhao's internal information. And, what was the relationship between Lu Buwei and Great Zhao? All these were very serious matters.
Wu Qi frowned, and the pent-up frustration rose from his heart up into his head. With a cold voice, he said, "Whatever! Sir, please help Wu Qi to send the message: At noontime tomorrow, I want to meet all the persons from the six dynasties who are in charge of the affair sin Gu Tai Dynasty. I am taking over Gu Tai Dynasty!"
He pulled out the identity token that represented his status as White Cloud Immortal Sect Discipline Hall's Executing Disciple, and gave it to Duke of Long Yang. After that, he looked at Duke of Long Yang and said with a smile, "Sir, I believe you have ways to inform those people. Wu Qi deeply appreciates your help!"
Duke of Long Yang darted a look at Wu Qi, then giggled and said, "You're being overly courteous by saying that, as if I am some outsider to you! What you ask me to help with is nothing! Long Yang can take the opportunity to get closer to Duke Wu Qi, and in the future, there will be many occasions when I will have to rely on Duke Wu Qi. The wind is blowing and the clouds are gathering, and soon, a thunderstorm is coming. Duke Wu Qi, you've been wandering about at leisure over the last three years, but now, you can't avoid paying attention to the things that happen in the world."
He casually pointed his finger at the nearly one-mile wide large hole on the ground, the work from the self-explosion of the Ghost Immortal, then turned to look at Wu Qi and said softly, "The trouble has come to you, Duke Wu Qi!" Wearing a gloomy face, Wu Qi did not say anything. That was right, the three years had gone over in a complete calmness, and the era of rapid change had finally arrived. Despite his unwillingness, he had to face the approaching eccentric and wild trial.
At the noon of next day, inside the northward private room on the sixth floor of the freshly renovated Hidden Sword Pavilion, the people of six dynasties were sitting around a large round table.
Wu Qi sat in the seat of honor with his back straight, glancing coldly at the people around the table. No one was speaking.
Lao Ai represented Great Yan.
Zhao Ta represented Great Zhao.
Xiang Yu represented Great Chu.
Meng Tian represented Great Qin.
Tian Dan represented Great Qi.
Duke of Long Yang represented Great Wei.
Wu Qi rubbed his temples with both hands, as he felt a headache was coming. What a group of people!!
Then, he turned his glance to the eight Gu Tai Dynasty's Princes, who stood with utmost respect behind the six Great Masters of the six dynasties. Wu Qi nearly could not refrain himself from throwing his head back and breathing out a long sigh. Gu Tai Dynasty was like a little sheep, how could it withstand the invasion from six hungry wolves?
After a full one hour of complete silence, when everyone nearly became cross-eyed from the constant glaring and gazing, Wu Qi finally spoke coldly, "Everyone, Wu Qi needs a little favor from you. By the order of Jiangcheng Zi, the leader of Discipline Hall, Wu Qi is here to handle the affair of Gu Tai Dynasty's throne replacement. The territory of Gu Tai Dynasty now belongs to me. I will not fight with you for the rest of several hundred states and dynasties, I just want Gu Tai Dynasty!"
He pointed at Li Yifeng, who was standing right next to him, and continued with a deep tone, "He will be the new emperor of Gu Tai Dynasty."
The faces of eight Gu Tai Dynasty's Princes fell instantly. One after another, they raised their heads, glaring angrily at Li Yifeng. Wu Qi noticed the unconvinced, unreconciled, and furious look on their faces. He snorted coldly and said, "What's wrong? Are you not convinced with my decision? Could it be that only after you are punished by the sect rule that you will be convinced?"
The eight Princes exchanged a glance with one another, then bowed their heads with reverence and awe, not daring to utter a single word. It was at this moment they recalled that they were merely White Cloud Immortal Sect's outer sect disciples, and Wu Qi was the Executing-Disciple of Discipline Hall sent here by the sect. It would just take a word from him to replace the throne of Gu Tai Dynasty.
Wu Qi sighed lightly. Tapping the table, he asked in a flat tone, "So, does everyone agree with Wu Qi's suggestion?"
Xiang Yu rose while grinning coldly, then swaggered out from the room. "We'll see if you can keep this property!" He said coolly before going off.
Duke of Long Yang gave a sweet smile and said gently, "It is only a Gu Tai Dynasty. If Duke Wu Qi wishes to have it, it will be yours!"
Tian Dan and the others looked at each other, then nodded their heads indifferently. Honestly, they did not attach too much importance to a small dynasty like this. As a matter of fact, Gu Tai Dynasty's territory was just about the same size as the combined land size of a few vassal kingdoms under the six dynasties, while its resources were far less copious than those vassal kingdoms. For the six dynasties, it was not a huge loss by giving up a little Gu Tai Dynasty.
After a moment of pondering, Meng Tian cried out lightly, "What Duke of Tianyun wants is only this Gu Tai Dynasty, and you will not interfere with us in the future, right?"
Wu Qi gave Meng Tian a deep look, who had a pair of deep eyes and a tall and pointy nose. "Yes, I just want the Gu Tai Dynasty." He said with a low voice, "This place will be mine, and I can pay no heed to your doings... However, for the sake that we come from the same planet, let Wu Qi remind you one thing: White Cloud Planet is the foundation to White Cloud Immortal Sect, so you better be careful and don't draw fire on yourself."
Right after his words echoed out, sounds of rapid footstep were heard coming from the corridor suddenly. A very attractive and beautiful person, whose gender was something Wu Qi could not tell in that brief moment, strode hurriedly into the private room, and in a flurry, he or she handed a small jade slip to Duke of Long Yang.
Duke of Long Yang sent his divine will and read the contents of the jade slip. His beautiful face flickered suddenly.
He raised his head up, turned to look at Wu Qi, and said, "Great Yan's Crown Prince, Yan Qijun, was assaulted at Xue Yuan Planet, and currently no one knows if he is still alive or not!!"
Wu Qi was taken aback by the sudden news and sprung from his seat.