Wu Qi took a deep breath when the walls of An He City emerged on the horizon. Six figures suddenly rushed out of the city and came before him in the form of six black-clothed Daoists. As they cupped their fists and bowed to him, a vast amount of information began to flow into his spiritual ocean. In just a flash, he had gained a thorough understanding of the current situation in An He City.
While smiling, six celestial fiend puppets merged themselves into Wu Qi's body. Streams of chaotic energy carefully flowed through them to gradually modify their bodies. Wu Qi could not wait to witness how powerful they would become when all eighteen celestial fiend puppets of his were modified to have the chaotic body similar to that of Ao Buzun.
The situation in An He City was as per the plan which Su Qin and himself had forged together earlier.
As Zhu Linggong had been cooperative with the army of Zhong Province, helping them in wiping out the powers of Immortal cultivators who had occupied An Le County, which included those in the Greenwood Mountain and the Euphoria Heavenly Palace, he was made the County Governor of An Le County and the City Lord of An He City. The official paper of his appointment had already arrived a few months ago. With that, he had recruited three thousand soldiers, and had ordered a few of his trusted subordinates to reorganize the Military Court of An Le County. They were now training the new recruits.
The few Generals who controlled the Military Court of An Le County had served Zhu Linggong's clan for years. Not only were they loyal to him, they possessed strong personal abilities. However, they only controlled a team of three hundred soldiers, who served as the Personal Guards of the County Governor. The rest of the positions in the Military Court, two thousand seven hundred of them, were being held by the men who Yan Bugui had brought from the Scouting Office. Also, these elites from the Scouting Office had joined the Military Court to fill most of the positions of middle and lower grade officers, and they had quickly established their authority among the soldiers.
As promised by Feng Lingling, Yan Bugui was appointed as the Punishment Officer of An Le County's Punishment Court, which was re-established not long ago. He had recruited one thousand soldiers to form the Punishment Army, and many more guards and officers to help maintain the public order of various cities in the county.
The Punishment Army was practicing the True Body of Heaven and Earth Scripture. On the other hand, the guards who worked for the Punishment Court were given the ordinary techniques of energy-cultivation and breath-control, which Su Qin had already secretly modified. At the most, such cultivation techniques could allow these guards to step into the Xiantian realm. However, when the time came, with just a minor change in the scripts and a slight stimulation with external force, these guards would be able to form their Gold Core instantly, becoming real cultivators.
It was a secret plot. Within An Le County's land of one million miles circumference, there were thousands of cities big and small, and tens of thousands of villages and towns. The officers and guards who were assigned to maintain the public order in these places amounted to a massive figure. Once they were all turned into Gold Core cultivators, it would be a formidable power!
The Military Court and the Punishment Court had fallen into the hands of Su Qin and Yan Bugui. But, there were other administration departments, such as the Agriculture Court, and they were controlled by Zhu Linggong. Nevertheless, these departments did not have real power, and there was not much interest in them either. Therefore, Su Qin had given up on controlling them.
As for An Le County's Directorate of Celestials, it was re-established by a few lower-grade Oracles who were directly sent here by the Zhong Province's Directorate of Celestials. The Directorate of Celestials had a very esteemed status in Great Yu. They had their own system, and were dissociated from An Le County's administrative body. No matter it was Zhu Linggong or Su Qin, none of them could plant their men into it.
As he quickly went through and analyzed the massive information which the celestial fiend puppets had sent him, Wu Qi transformed into a beam of dark light and shot into the city.
Compared to a few years ago when Wu Qi had left, the itinerant cultivators who roamed the streets in An He City were nowhere to be found. Also, all the exquisite, fancy pavilions and pagodas that were built by itinerant cultivators over the hundreds of years of occupation were dismantled, now replaced by the square, ancient-looking buildings constructed with thick, heavy rocks, which was the unique building style of Great Yu.
And because the pavilions and pagodas built by itinerant cultivators were dismantled, the streets in the city had become much wider. Guards of Punishment Court slowly walked down the spotlessly clean streets in groups of three and four, throwing watchful glances at the pedestrians. Every now and then, some high-ranking officers would pull out specially made bone mirrors, pointing it at some guys who looked suspicious.
At the moment when Wu Qi quietly landed on a street, an officer pointed his bone mirror at a youth who was clad in a green cloth. Abruptly, a blinding white light erupted from the mirror. The officer pointed a finger at the youth as he cried out fiercely, "A cultivator! He is an early-stage Gold Core cultivator!"
Immediately, jarring whistles that sent pain in one's ears blared out from all directions. The common people were running wildly across the streets, crying and yelling in panic. A small flying ship soared up into the sky from the City Lord Mansion, followed the whistles, and came above the street in no time. As it arrived, a dozen robust figures leaped out from the ship and descended. Yan Bugui had arrived personally with a dozen Punishment Court's soldiers.
The early-stage Gold Core cultivator screamed with terror. "I have no bad intentions! I am just..."
Before he could finish his words, Yan Bugui had rushed before him. A sword was swiftly thrust and pierced the cultivator's dantian, and a strand of purple energy invisible to the naked eyes flowed into his body, exploding and ripping his dantian to pieces. Yan Bugui kicked the cultivator's corpse away as he snapped in a stern voice, "Listen up, evildoers and the likes, this is Great Yu's land, where no Immortal cultivators are allowed to enter!"
Yan Bugui loud shout caused half of An He City to tremble. Not knowing from where, sonorous claps and cheers echoed out. The common people of An He City were glad that Yan Bugui had decisively settled the Gold Core cultivator who came out of nowhere.
From the cheering of the common people, Wu Qi realized that even though the itinerant cultivators had occupied An Le County for hundreds of years, the people's hearts were still with Great Yu. So, when Great Yu re-established their authority in this land, the people had resolutely returned to the dynasty who once ruled them.
Great Yu had ruled Pangu Continent for too long. In order to establish a vast base on this land, he would have to spend more time and effort, as well as some good opportunities. But no matter what, judging from the current situation in An He City, the official power had all fallen into Wu Qi and Su Qin's hands, which was a good start.
Yan Bugui glanced around with an awe-inspiring appearance and the sword in his hand. Then, he saw Wu Qi.
Wu Qi nodded at Yan Bugui smilingly as he strode over, cupped his fist, and said, "Your Excellency, I am a man of the wild who earned my living through hunting. I wonder if I could join An He City, so that I can contribute myself to the people?"
In a pretense, Yan Bugui sized up Wu Qi as he asked with a frown, "You mean you want to be an official?"
Wu Qi nodded. He slapped his chest with one hand, then laughed loudly and said, "I've gained some strength since little. No grizzly bear or savage tiger in the mountain can suffer a blow from me without collapsing. When those Immortal cultivators were occupying An Le County, I felt disdained to join them. But now, as Your Excellency has led an army to retrieve An He City, I think it is time for me to offer my services."
Yan Bugui paced around Wu Qi as he nodded thoughtfully and said, "How much strength have you got?"
Wu Qi glanced around, then went straight to a large stone pillar that was placed before a store next to the street, which was used to fasten steeds. He clutched his hand on it and lifted it up over his shoulder with one swift motion. The stone measured about ten feet in circumference and weighed ten to fifteen thousand kilograms at the least. But, he swung his arms and hefted it like a child playing with a ball.
Yan Bugui cried out with 'surprise', clapping his hands and saying with a smile, "You are truly a man with great strength, excellent! It will be a waste of talent if I put you in the Punishment Court. Well, I will refer you to the Military Court, as it happens that they need a Lieutenant. What is your name?"
After throwing the stone pillar back to its original position, Wu Qi waved his hand and said, "My name is... Tan Lang!" His heart twitched slightly at the mention of the name. It was Wu Wang's real name, Wu Qi's true Master in the Underhand Sect. He had decided to use this name to stir up a foul wind and a rain of blood on Pangu Continent.
Yan Bugui stared at Wu Qi, and he saw Wu Qi nodding ever so slightly. Then, he produced a bone mirror that gleamed with a bright green glow, pointing it at Wu Qi in a serious manner. A faint layer of purple mist drifted out of Wu Qi's skin. "No wonder you have such a great strength. It seems you have already gained enlightenment of Pangu Power. Amazing! A man who can gain enlightenment of Pangu Power all by himself is a talent we urgently need!"
Wu Qi smiled and did not speak a word. So, the official name of this purple mist was Pangu Power? It seemed just right. What other name was more suitable than Pangu Power, when this purple mist was produced by the Pangu Continent, which was the body of Pangu?
The officers of Punishment Court were smiling pleasingly. Since Wu Qi possessed the purple mist, he could never be the spy sent by some Immortal cultivator. As far as these ordinary officers were concerned, the purple mist would never lie to them, it was that simple. Nobody would think that there was actually an innate chaotic body which allowed the purple mist to coexist with other powers.
Yan Bugui had 'discovered' a talent, an extraordinary one. Therefore, he personally brought Wu Qi to the Military Court.
On hearing of their arrival, Zhu Linggong and the few Generals who were loyal to him came out to greet them. When they heard Yan Bugui was referring a man who wished to join the army of the Military Court, the few Generals' faces turned ugly, though Zhu Linggong maintained his composure.
An alarm rang out in Wu Qi's mind. As he gave Yan Bugui a glance, he touched his face and smiled, but said nothing.
Yan Bugui's face was extremely unsightly. "It is only a small matter. Why are you hesitating?" He asked with a deep voice.
One of the Generals said angrily, "Please watch your manner, Sir. My Master is the City Lord of An He City, as well as the County Governor of the An Le County!"
Wu Qi sighed faintly. He stared at Zhu Linggong and asked, "Old Zhu, where is your son, my disciple, Bajie? Well, I don't feel like taking up the position of Lieutenant now. Instead, I want you to hand me the authority of the Military Court in these few days."
Zhu Linggong's face fell instantly, and the few Generals who stood next to him were backing off with terror.
Purple mist rose from Wu Qi's body as he emanated a vast pressure that forced Zhu Linggong and the rest to drop to their knees. "A moment later I will cast a restrictive spell in your soul. You will be fine as long as you obey me..." After thinking for a moment, he shook his head and said, "Enjoy the wealth and glory as a City Lord and a County Governor. Just leave everything else to us."
An indescribable expression emerged on Zhu Linggong's face. While trembling, he stared at Wu Qi, and finally bowed his head in dejection.