It was a small village with pastures and farmlands in its vicinity. A less than half-mile long dirt road ran across it from the center, on both sides of which were some shabbily built log cabins and thatched cottages. And, those were the only buildings in the village. Peering through the emptied space between the houses, there were also some homes and storehouses loosely built across the pastures and farmlands. But, the heart of the village was the two rows of buildings along the dirt road.
Wu Qi walked on the muddy road as he followed behind Yan Bugui.
Previously, when he was walking slowly along the main road by himself, he never paid any attention to the wind blowing around him, and the rain showering down from above. No matter it was a puddle of filthy water or a patch of muddy road, cow dung, or dogsh*t, he had always stepped through them. But now, he actually noticed the mud on the dirt road, and he did not feel good to walk barefoot on it.
Led by a cock, a herd of hens walked slowly towards him from the other end of the road. The cock held its head with a big, red crown high up, walking along the road like a king inspecting his territory. It gave Wu Qi a disdainful gaze, and its glance did not even stop for one second on his face.
Wu Qi and the proud cock went past each other, while two hens clucked and flapped their wings as they ran next to him. Their wings brushed his legs, and he could feel an aura of life from them.
The energy that had been laying quietly within his body for two months began to flow once again. The wood and water element energy containing a very powerful vitality kept rushing across his body. Although the wounds on his body still looked as ferocious and nasty as before, the injuries inside of his body were healing rapidly.
An itchiness crawled into his severely wounded lungs. It was a sign that the tissues in the lungs had started to regrow. And, the itchiness made him feel like coughing. But luckily, he managed to hold it back. His ribs were still full of cracks, and it would be fatal if he coughed or sneezed now. Why should he torture himself for nothing?
Laughing merrily, Yan Bugui greeted the people in the village as he walked. The villagers were simple and honest, like the dirt in the ground, mild and quiet in their temper. But, deep inside their humble bodies there hid a tough passion. It was the same even for a few old men sitting and making ropes in the courtyard before their house. Wu Qi could sense a life force hiding in their bodies, faint but as powerful as his.
"This is a nice village!" Wu Qi praised.
Yan Bugui twitched his lips and laughed in derision. "But, somebody does not think like that!"
They came to the end of the road. In front of them was a large jujube tree with a thatched cottage stood right next to it. Obviously, it was built not long ago, as it was sending forth a strong aroma of dirt, as well as the natural fragrance of weeds. Under the tree was a ring made with rocks, filled with soil and made into a small flower nursery. Su Qin, whose hair were as messy as a chicken nest, was seen squatting on top of a rock, wearing a distressed expression as he sipped on porridge cooked with grounded corns from a chipped clay bowl.
His clothes looked old and shabby. It was a burlap cloth commonly worn by the mortals on Pangu Continent. And, perhaps he was attacked by some stray dogs or due to other reasons, there were holes everywhere on his pants, and his sleeve had two large holes on the shoulder, exposing his fair skin and the body without too many muscles.
Wu Qi laughed while pointing his finger at Su Qin.
Su Qin raised his head abruptly. After spending a long while to study the sorry-looking Wu Qi, only then he was able to recognize who this fellow without an arm was. He gave a strange cry, threw away the clay bowl, covered his face with his hands, and ran into the cottage. The door was quickly shut with a thud.
Yan Bugui roared with laughter as he dragged Wu Qi before the door and kicked it open. He pointed his finger at Su Qin, who sat on a wooden stool, eyes rolling while grumbling under his breath, and said, "Old man, what are you hiding from? What is on you that can't be seen by others?"
Wu Qi smiled mirthfully as he came before Su Qin, offered him a deep bow, and said, "Old Mister, I've not seen you for a long time!"
Su Qin twitched his lips and breathed a long sigh. He pointed at Wu Qi's missing arm and asked, "I thought I looked ugly enough, but why are you missing an arm? Tsk, Zi Xuan will be very sad if she knows this!"
Wu Qi swung his remaining arm with an indifferent attitude and said with a smile, "It is nothing. I can have it back at any time I want. I keep it like this as it could help me clear out my thoughts. Now that I've straightened out my thought, I'll have it regrown whenever I am in a good mood. It is nothing difficult at all!"
He sat on a wooden stool placed next to Su Qin, then began to tell them in detail what he had gone through during this period of time. He also told Su Qin about Yuan Hua Sect's scheme on him, their evil plan for Princess Zhang Le, and the property he had seized at An He City.
Su Qin knitted his brows in a tight frown, sinking into a deep thought. At last, he lightly clapped his hands. A gust of breeze rose from nowhere, from which, a short young man made his appearance. As the youth appeared, he went to his knees and said, "Greeting, Prime Minister!"
Su Qin waved his hand and said coolly, "Go back and inform His Majesty about the changes in Yuan Hua Sect. If nothing happens to Princess Zhang Le, bring her away from Green Cliff Planet. If they have already done something back on her, tell the few old fellows who stay there to think of a way to retaliate."
The short young man answered. With a spin of his body, he transformed into a gust of breeze and disappeared.
Su Qin patted his ragged pants and told Wu Qi with a dried smile, "Well, just as what you'd thought, it is meaningless to send this piece of news back, as it will take three years to reach them. At that point in time, the dust would have had already settled. But at the very least, this is a step we need to take now."
Wu Qi answered with a nod, "I feel much better after knowing there are a few Old Misters taking care of things there."
Although his words were polite, Wu Qi's shifty eyes were squinting left and right while gazing at Su Qin, resting his glance here and there on the holes on Su Qin's cloth. Su Qin's face turned blue with anger, twitching his lips and turning away without giving Wu Qi another look. But, Wu Qi did not wish to spare Su Qin, and he kept asking how Su Qin got himself into such a miserable situation. Yet, Su Qin just clenched his jaws tightly and did not answer him.
Yan Bugui found it amusing as he stood off to a side watching them, then quickly told Wu Qi about Su Qin's embarrassing experiences.
Su Qin was made the Chief Commander for the one thousand elites who Great Yan Dynasty had sent to infiltrate Pangu Continent. Right after Wu Qi and Princess Zhang Le left Myriad Immortals Planet and rushed towards Great Yan Dynasty to provide reinforcement, Su Qin had already set off for Pangu Continent, bringing Yan Bugui and the rest of the elites with him. This was the first step in Great Yan Dynasty's expedition, and they were the scouts who Great Yan Dynasty had sent into Pangu Continent.
For the sake of the mission, Yan Bugui and the elites from Scouting Office had released the soul beasts which had fused with them since young, and scraped the internal energy and cultivation technique which they had practiced since little. After that, by relying on a secret medicine, they only preserved a strong fleshly body and muscle strength.
Su Qin had already transcended his Heavenly Tribulation and attained a cultivation base of Heaven Immortal. After arriving Pangu Continent with one thousand elites, he immediately began to gather information from everywhere, using various excuses he could to disperse and locate Yan Bugui and the others into different cities and villages in Zhong Province. For example, Yan Bugui had used the background of a refugee whose village was completely destroyed in a flood to set his foot in this peaceful village.
But, it was a rather unfortunate situation for Su Qin. He had used a mystic technique to suppress all his power, making him no different from an ordinary old man now.
Initially, Su Qin thought that with the vast knowledge he had gained throughout the years, it would be very easy for him to make a living on Pangu Continent. He planned to travel everywhere, gathering information while instructing Yan Bugui and the others on their spying tasks. He knew that the best sources of information could be found among the ordinary people. Therefore, following his two thousand years of life experience, Su Qin had made a disguise.
The first time, he disguised as a teacher, planning to teach in a random city within Zhong Province. But, little did he expect that teacher was not an occupation in Great Yu, as all the sons of wealthy and influential clans learned various skills and knowledge from the Great Oracles of Directorate of Celestials. As for the ordinary people, where did they have the time to learn those ancient scripts that looked like bird's claws?
It was a heavy blow for him. So, the second time, he disguised as a wandering physician. Su Qin was a peerless genius, and his attainment in medical knowledge was extraordinary. He could even carry out surgical operations. However, the people on Pangu Continent never knew what a wandering physician was. If they got sick, they would ask for medicinal decoction from the Oracles of Directorate of Celestials. They would never go to him, who was just a physician without a license.
Consequently, Su Qin clenched his jaws tightly and found himself a bamboo stick, put a banner on it, and wrote 'Fortune Telling', getting ready to bluff those ordinary people with his silver tongue and earning himself some money. But, the industry of fortune-telling was actually dominated by Directorate of Celestials as well. As a result, he was nearly caught by the Great Oracle of Directorate of Celestials in Zhong Ning City. Luckily, he could run fast, and managed to escape from the city.
"Is there a fourth time?" Wu Qi laughed until his stomach hurt after listening to Su Qin's embarrassing experiences, and he could not help but want to know more.
Su Qin breathed out a long sigh, wearing a sad face as he turned to look at Wu Qi. "The fourth time happened on the day before yesterday. I disguised as a wandering Daoist and found a few boys from wealthy clans with decent bone structures somewhere nearby Zhong Ning City. I planned to take them as my disciples, and take the opportunity to stay in their home. But..."
He gnashed his teeth angrily and said, "When those people living on Pangu Continent learned that I am an Immortal, they immediately exposed me to the local authority! And, in order to catch me, an old man who is suspected of cultivating Immortality, a total of eight thousand soldiers were dispatched from surrounding local authorities! I was surrounded by an army of eight thousand soldiers! Do they not have to pay for the expenses of so many soldiers?"
Wu Qi gave Su Qin a pitying look, but everyone could see a mere trace of a smile in his eyes.
He breathed out a long sigh and told Su Qin, "What to do? The situation on Pangu Continent is completely different compared to outer heavenly realms. Those who cultivate Immortality rarely visit any city, as the soldiers from Yu Dynasty can kill them at will. It is not that easy to take root on Pangu Continent!"
With a flip of his palm, he took out a dozen drops of Ganoderma Fluid, wrapped them with ice, and gave to Su Qin. "Old Mister, this is the essence left behind by a Ganoderma Immortal after failing in transcending the tribulation. Every drop can save a person's life."
After pondering for a brief while, Wu Qi suddenly slapped his thigh and said with a laugh, "I do have a good plan for you to blend into Pangu Continent. Now, the An He City can come to a good use!"
Su Qin pricked his brows as he immediately understood what Wu Qi's plan was. "So, you planned to use An He City as a stepping stepping-stone for us?"
As Wu Qi was about to tell Su Qin the strategy he had just thought of, all of a sudden, a hurried knocking of wooden clapper was heard coming from the village's entrance.