It had been more than two months since Ningbo City was destroyed, and the aftermath was still plaguing Zhong Province.
On the day the city was destroyed, more than a million common people died in the city and the surrounding towns. However, when compared to the total population of the three hundred provinces ruled by the Zhong Province, such a loss was merely a drop in the ocean, nothing really serious. What mattered was the one hundred thousand soldiers hiding outside Ningbo City - the army personally led by Bo Yunting, who was the beloved son of Bo Zhongfu, the new Prefecture Overseer of Zhong Province.
With the exception of Bo Yunting and his twelve Second Pangu Heaven generals, the army was completely wiped out by the sudden attack of the meteorite. As a matter of fact, this army was not from Zhong Province. Since the incident of Feng Lingling, the local army of Zhong Province was ordered to be disbanded, and all the soldiers had returned to their homeland for retirement. The army that got wiped out was actually the private army brought by Bo Zhongfu from the enclaves of his clan, the army sent by his clan to protect him and make sure he could sit firmly in his office!
It was an elite army, and the Bo Clan had spent an astronomical amount of money to train each one of them. But, in the end, the entire army turned into a puff of smoke outside Ningbo City, leaving only a dozen generals behind. The outcome had sent Bo Zhongfu into a towering rage!
Before becoming the Prefecture Overseer of Zhong Province, Bo Zhongfu was a trusted minister of the present Human Emperor, and had a very powerful network of contacts in Liangzhu. As soon as he learned that his private army was wiped out, he immediately sent a memorial to the throne, which shocked all the ministers of Great Yu.
Soon after, a large number of experts and secret agents flocked out of You Xiong Plain, hunting and killing Immortals of Myriad Immortal Alliance all over the world. In just two months of time, countless battles had broken out everywhere between the Immortals and the experts of Great Yu, causing the lands to crack and the mountains to crumble. Vaguely, the situation resembled the legendary Apocalypse.
Nobody knew what was wrong with Myriad Immortal Alliance. In the two months after wiping out Ningbo City, they continued to stir up troubles everywhere. More than two hundred capital cities of lower-grade provinces were attacked by meteors; only thirteen of them survived the attacks because they were guarded by experts, while the others were completely razed to the ground.
As a result, the Great Yu Dynasty became even more furious, and sent more experts to capture and kill the Immortals of Myriad Immortal Alliance. It was even said that some imperial sinecures, who were dwelling in the forbidden palace and had not been seen for many years, had secretly left You Xiong Plain with the Elders of Myriad Immortal Alliance as their targets. Rumors also mentioned that some of them had fought fiercely and destroyed some places.
The situation was somewhat out of control. Under the all-around suppression of Great Yu, the Immortals of Ascending Immortal Hall and Stealth Immortal Hall had begun to attack cities and towns in groups. On the other hand, the experts sent by Great Yu had also started to attack indiscriminately in the face of repeated losses.
With the decree issued by the Human Emperor, all the provinces had entered a state of war. Armies began to exterminate itinerant cultivator powers in an orderly fashion, slaughtering countless cultivators and demons in the process. For the moment, the flames of war were raging across the entire Pangu Continent, and blood was flowing over the land like water. As soon as the huge war machine of Great Yu was activated, Myriad Immortal Alliance and the other itinerant cultivator powers immediately suffered a severe blow.
But, none of this had anything to do with Wu Qi, neither with Hai Province.
In this storm, Hai Province was only a starter, and no one was paying it any more attention after Ningbo City was destroyed. Gloomily, Yu He took a large sum of money from Yu Mu and began rebuilding Ningbo City right on top of its original location.
Pangu Continent was like a living being, with a very strong self-healing power. In just a month, the huge crater created by the meteor had fully recovered. Although the topography was very different from before, it was at least a flat and fertile land, with some mountains and hills that looked like scars.
The new Ningbo City was built right on top of the old one. With Yu Mu's support, Yu He had secretly transferred five million people from Zhong Province into the city. The newly built city was bound to be more flourishing and prosperous than the former one.
Wu Qi did not care about these civil affairs. From amongst the new people migrated to the city, he selected thirty thousand vigorous young men and formed the new army of the Military Court. After that, he brought them to Dong Hai County, where they would be trained by Yan Bugui and his elites of the Scouting Office.
As the battle between Great Yu and Myriad Immortal Alliance was getting fiercer and more intense, the day Wu Qi had been waiting for finally arrived.
In Great Yu Imperial Calendar, the third day of the ninth month was the day of great inauspiciousness, and the world would be filled with an ominous aura. Nothing major should be carried out on this day except offering sacrifices. Every year, the imperial clan of Great Yu would go to their ancestral temple for a grand imperial sacrifice ceremony, and many of the noble clans and various powers of Great Yu would also hold their own blood sacrifice ceremonies on the same day.
With the ominous aura growing stronger, the space around Pangu Continent would become fragile and unstable, so the ghosts and deities from the other domain would be able to project a stronger power onto the continent more easily. Therefore, offering blood sacrifices to them on this day would bring more benefits. Of course, in order to win their joy, the sacrifices must be properly selected, and the best would be those with the strongest sentience and the most vigorous blood.
Under the heaven, what could be the best sacrifice besides human beings? Every year, even though the Human Emperor repeatedly decreed that it was strictly forbidden to use human beings as sacrifices, countless common people would still be secretly killed. At this time of the year, prisoners and exiles in all the provinces and counties would be brought away, and there were even underground deals to purchase those convicted of felony crimes or exiles, akin to buying pigs and dogs in a market.
Wu Qi had also bought a great deal of sacrifices. After spending half the money he gained by destroying Mount Moon Gazing, he bought 120,000 white horses, 120,000 black horses, 90,000 white cows, 90,000 black cows, 60,000 white sheep, and 60,000 black sheep. It took him a full month and a half to buy these sacrifices. Fortunately, the land of Zhong Province was rich, and there were numerous pastures selling countless livestock. Through his relationship with Yu He, Wu Qi managed to buy so many livestock and had them transported to Dong Hai City before the day.
A huge altar stood outside Dong Hai City, surrounded by countless stone pillars tied up with livestock to be sacrificed. On the altar, thousands of Reverend Yao Yue's clan members laid stiffly on the ground, while their leader himself was put in captivity by the Immortal Detaining Needles. He could not even move his eyeballs, and his eyes were filled with fear and despair. His lips were wriggling rapidly, but he could not make a sound.
Together with Lord Xiansheng, Catfish, and the rest of the company, Princess Zhang Le appeared in front of Reverend Yao Yue in an imposing manner. The princess, who had inherited the Dao of Ancient Gods, would be the officiate of today's sacrificial ceremony. When Reverend Yao Yue saw the true appearances of Princess Zhang Le and her company, especially Gold Horn and Silver Horn, who coiled around Wu Qi's waist, his expression became rather complicated; a mixture of fear, despair, anger, and resentment.
Wu Qi stepped slowly up to Reverend Yao Yue, then lowered his voice and said, "This is the reason that led to the total destruction of Mount Moon Gazing. You shouldn't have offended my wife, brothers, and friends. You can die now... And don't worry, you'll die last!"
He paused for a brief moment, then nodded his head and said with a smile, "Believe it or not, Myriad Immortal Alliance and Great Yu are fighting each other because of you, and the war is spreading across the entire Pangu Continent. Well, we both know that the request of releasing you and your clan members is just an excuse. But, at least they are willing to use you as an excuse. You should be feeling very proud, right?"
Shaking his head mockingly, Wu Qi sighed and said in a low voice, "Sure enough, the organized people are always arrogant and domineering. They are different from us!"
Reverend Yao Yue stared at Wu Qi with a sudden look of hope, and the complex expression on his face vanished, replaced by a glimmer of pleadings and despair. He tried hard to roll his eyes, to give Wu Qi a meaningful glance.
Wu Qi turned to look at the few young children lying beside Reverend Yao Yue, who were supposed to be his youngest children. With the corner of his lips twitching, he took a deep breath and looked up at the gray sun. "I'm sorry," he said in a deep voice. "A weed must be exterminated by the roots, or it grows again in the spring. I'll not give your children any hope of revenge!"
With a deep laugh, he shook his head and said, "I've heard too many stories like this. If I don't kill every single one of you, maybe I'll die in the hands of your descendants in the future. So, I can't spare any of your descendants. Maybe these kids around you have the potential of becoming Primordial Immortals? How can I risk it?"
Reverend Yao Yue's eyes suddenly turned as gray as a dead fish's eyes, and all the vitality in him suddenly disappeared. Although he was still alive, he had lost all of his vitality.
The ominous aura, earthy yellow in color, began to emerge between the Heaven and Earth, and everyone could feel the vibration coming from the void. The void around Pangu Continent was wavering, and its structure had become fragile. At this moment, the power needed for ghosts and deities to come to Pangu Continent was greatly reduced.
The ominous aura reached its peak when the sun rose to the center of the sky. The air was filled with the earthy yellow aura, which had completely absorbed all the sunlight.
On the third day of the ninth month of this year, it happened to be the day that the ominous aura was at its highest level, which happened once every sixty years. As a result, the aura was ten thousand times stronger than usual. On a day like this, the common people would be hiding in their homes and never go out to work. However, many wealthy and powerful clans regarded the day as the gift of Heaven, and offered sacrifices to the ghosts and deities that were far more abundant than normal.
Wu Qi, Lord Xiansheng, and the others left the altar, leaving Princess Zhang Le alone, dressed in an Oracle robe and standing straight at the top of the altar.
When the sunlight completely disappeared, Princess Zhang Le raised the bone knife in her hand and gently stabbed into the void. The air rang with miserable wails as hundreds of thousands of livestock scattered around the altar had their throats cut by invisible forces at the same time.
Blood spurted out, and its smell rushed high into the sky.