Because of the strong opposition of Xun Kuang and the other two old misters, Wu Qi had no choice but to change the terms of the agreement with Hei Mo. They agreed to exchange the freedom of everyone with vast quantities of natural treasures.
Unlike the other Ghost Gods from the outer domain, Hei Mo was a strange fellow. He was particularly fond of the various rare and precious natural resources produced in Pangu World. The reason he taught King Yang Shan the Black Celestial Forbidden Curse was because the latter had once offered him a batch of extremely precious materials, which he had used to craft a Prime Weapon and killed one of his old rivals.
All the Ghost Gods from the outer domain, including Lei Meng, were only interested in the souls and flesh of the living beings on Pangu Continent. But, Hei Mo was an alien amongst them; he was on a constant lookout for vast quantities of natural treasures, so much so that he even allowed them to substitute blood sacrifices with natural treasures. At any rate, Wu Qi and the others were relieved with the new terms. It was the best solution which everyone could agree to.
But, the rate Hei Mo proposed immediately sent Wu Qi's head reeling. Since they would not offer him blood sacrifices, he had demanded an immense amount of treasures. The amount was so enormous that it nearly drove Yan Dan and all his courtiers mad when they heard it — it was almost the equivalent of twenty thousand secret vaults that Great Yan had accumulated over the past two thousand years! Hei Mo agreed to free all the people of Great Yan from the curses if they would offer him that amount of treasures.
After more than two thousand years of hard work, Great Yan had only one secret vault. And yet, the amount of treasures Hei Mo demanded was equivalent to twenty thousand of such treasure vaults! Wu Qi nearly fainted when he heard that. 'This fellow is trying to get revenge! He did it on purpose!'
As if he did not notice the bitter expressions on Wu Qi and the others' faces, Hei Mo told them the amount of various precious materials he wanted, as well as the amount of other materials they could be replaced with. After that, he took his leave happily, leaving behind only a withered baby corpse. Even as he was leaving, he reminded Wu Qi and the others that if they could find a few Innate Spirit Artifacts or similar artifacts, he could make an exception to free the emperor and ministers of Great Yan from the curses.
Upon hearing that, Wu Qi and the others got so angry that they almost coughed up blood. A few Innate Spirit Artifacts? There were very few innate artifacts left in the current world of cultivators, and Wu Qi was considered extremely lucky to be able to find the innate energy required to cultivate the Scroll of Stealing. And that was only the innate energy, not the innate artifact which had taken physical shape. Innate Spirit Artifacts were formed from innate energies and the work of the heaven and earth. They were so rare that ordinary people hadn't even heard of them. Yet, Hei Mo actually demanded a few Innate Spirit Artifacts to release them?
That was simply impossible. Even if they did find some Innate Spirit Artifacts, they would never give them to Hei Mo.
The only way now was to gather the astronomical amount of precious materials Hei Mo demanded in exchange for the freedom of Yan Dan and the others. The emperor and courtiers came together and discussed for a quarter of an hour, and after being pointed out by Wu Qi, Yan Dan made a decision of sending formal letters to the emperors of the other five dynasties, including Ying Zheng, inviting them to meet at Great Yan's palace.
The letter simply asked a question: Are you interested in the solution to the curse?
As Wu Qi and others had expected, the emperors of five dynasties, Ying Zheng, Wei Wuji, Zhao Sheng, Tian Wen, and Qu Ping, as well as their courtiers arrived at Great Yan's palace as quickly as they could in just half a month. Because of the feuds among the dynasties, these emperors feared that the meeting might be a trap, so each of them brought at least a million soldiers with them. And, without exception, all the soldiers cultivated the body tempering technique of the human race, while some military officers even practiced the various mystic arts of the Oracles.
Wu Qi could not help but laugh in his heart. It seemed that the emperors of the six dynasties had sent their best men to Pangu Continent, and they had reaped a lot in just a few short years. In particular, there were several courtiers around Qu Ping whose obscure and mysterious aura let Wu Qi knew that they had received the orthodox teaching of the Directorate of Celestials, and that they had accumulated pretty decent cultivation bases.
Millions of soldiers made their camps outside Ji City, their banners fluttering fiercely along the camps and barracks that stretched hundreds of miles across the vast flatland. The soldiers and captains from different dynasties were flaunting their prowess amongst each other. Sounds of drums and horns rose high into the air while the battle cries let out by the soldiers churned the passing clouds in the sky. Every once in a while, the walls of Ji City trembled as the soldiers stamped their feet and shouted in unison. Although the walls were protected by numerous layers of energy barriers, they soon cracked from the deafening cries and ground-shaking stamps.
On Pangu Continent, even in the rich and populous Zhong Province, Wu Qi had never seen millions of soldiers, who all practiced the cultivation technique of the human race, gathered in one place! Even the main force of the punitive army led by Bo Yunting only had 100,000 soldiers!
It was only after witnessing millions of soldiers who practiced the cultivation technique of the human race gathered in one place that one could truly understand what the meaning of the torrent that could destroy everything was. Wu Qi could not imagine what a terrible monster these six armies would become when they were seasoned, and when all the soldiers had stepped into the realm of Heaven Immortals.
Furthermore, the generals who led these armies were Bai Qi, Yue Yi, Tian Dan, Xiang Yu, Li Xin, Wang Jian, and many famous generals who could make one's scalp numbed just by thinking of them. Moreover, because of Wu Qi, they were about to get rid of their last shackle!
As long as the Black Celestial Forbidden Curse was removed, the heroes of the six dynasties would not be held back by anything...
Standing on the wall of Great Yan's palace and overlooking the military camps that stretched hundreds of miles outside Ji City, Wu Qi took a deep breath. His entire body was tingling with excitement, his internal organs shivering, and his heart drumming. He had a feeling that what he did today would throw the entire Pangu World into a chaos!
Perhaps, when the scientists who unleashed the horrible beast of nuclear weapons on Earth had the same thoughts as Wu Qi today on seeing the first nuclear bomb exploding in the wilderness!
"Hehe, it's going to be fun!" Wu Qi muttered to himself. "It's going to be really fun!"
Loud battle cries kept coming from outside the city. Energetic and restless, the soldiers of six dynasties were drilling crazily, using the most brutal means to constantly improve their strength. The entire Ji City was shaking, and even the whole planet was vibrating from their powerful movements. Wu Qi could feel the groans of the planet coming from under his feet.
They were millions of caged monsters waiting to be released.
As Wu Qi was absorbed in his reverie, a steady footstep came to his ears. Dressed in a red robe and with a blade hanging from his waist, Ma Yi strode up the wall. He bowed to Wu Qi, and then said in a deep and powerful voice, "Duke of Tianyun, His Majesty and the other emperors are waiting for you in the great hall!"
Wu Qi smiled and patted Ma Yi on the shoulder, then whispered, "Why don't you start cultivating Lao Ai's Great Sun Technique when this matter is done?"
Ma Yi's face turned into an ugly grimace as Wu Qi burst into laughter, then took a step and teleported into the palace's great hall.
The emperors of the six dynasties sat in a row on the dais at the far end of the great hall, while the brave and brilliant courtiers of six dynasties crowded the spacious hall. Everyone was staring at Wu Qi who appeared suddenly. The air in the hall was so stagnant that it seemed to have been compressed into an iron plate, weighing heavily on everyone's mind.
Could Wu Qi really get rid the Black Celestial Forbidden Curse, the evil thing that made the emperors and courtiers from the six dynasties wake up from their nightmares now and then?
In the face of the pressure from all the heroes of the six dynasties, Wu Qi stuck out his chest and looked around undaunted, nodding to everyone.
Then, he pointed at a petite and beautiful serving girl, who stood within the crowd of serving girls behind the six emperors. The girl shrieked as she flew up into the air and came floating before Wu Qi. With a slap on her forehead, Wu Qi pulled her soul out in front of the crowd. After that, a puff of dark smoke gushed out of his fingertips, which he molded into a thin, sharp needle and carefully pierced into her soul.
After carefully working with the girl's soul for a quarter of an hour, Wu Qi slapped it back into her body. The emperors and courtiers of the six dynasties came swarming over to examine the condition of her soul. Before long, they had completed a thorough examination. "It's that vicious curse!" Ying Zheng growled, his teeth clenched. "Wu Qi, can you get rid of it?"
Without saying a word, Wu Qi pulled out the girl's soul again and removed the curse.
As the curse was planted by Wu Qi, the serving girl's soul was not part of the agreement between Hei Mo and King Yang Shan. Therefore, Hei Mo did not come out to disrupt the process. Only when the curses of those controlled by King Yang Shan were being cracked would Hei Mo appear to reap the souls.
Qu Ping held the soul of the serving girl in his hand and examined it carefully with the Ghost God mystic art he was practicing. It was a good quarter of an hour before he nodded in both sadness and exultation, then ground his teeth and sighed. "Sure enough, the curse is completely removed!"
Except for the emperor and courtiers of Great Yan, all those from the five dynasties sighed deeply. Their expressions were extremely complicated, and those who had resentments with Wu Qi in the past, especially the ministers of Great Qin and those who served Xiang Yu, were sizing him up with strange eyes. In particular, Xiang Yu's generals' faces were shifting between blue and pale, which Wu Qi found amusing to look at.
After a quarter of an hour's silence, the emperor of Great Qi, Tian Wen, asked in a slow voice, "Tell us your conditions!"
Wu Qi gave a faint smile. He raised a finger and said, "First, all six dynasties must make me Prince! All the ministers of six dynasties must regard me as their superior, and if I need any help, they must give me their full support. Of course, if any of the six dynasties need my help, I'll do my best to help if I can."
Yan Dan smiled and nodded. This was the condition that Wu Qi put forward during the discussion between him and his courtiers. It was impossible for Wu Qi to do such a great deed for the people of six dynasties without asking anything in return. He was only asking to be the Prince of all six dynasties, and it was not a really big deal.
After exchanging glances for a while, the emperors and courtiers of the other five dynasties agreed to the condition.
Seeing that all six dynasties had agreed to his first condition, the smile on Wu Qi's face grew broader. Then, he put up another finger and said, "The second condition is that the six dynasties must form an alliance and raise a new power on Pangu Continent. The six dynasties will assist each other and advance together. I think you all know what kind of place Pangu Continent is. Do you have the confidence in building your own power there alone?"
Like the first condition, the emperors and ministers of six dynasties agreed to the second condition without much hesitation. Pangu Continent was full of formidable powers, and the six dynasties were still too small and weak compared to them. The alliance of six dynasties was indeed an intriguing proposal. In fact, the enmities between the six dynasties were only small problems brought down from two thousand years ago. Since Wu Qi promised to help them get rid of the curses, why should they still trouble each other with these old feuds?
Instead of fighting and killing each other in a wretched place as the outer heavenly realms, the prospect of joining forces and fighting over territories on Pangu Continent was way better!
As for Ying Zheng, he actually did not mind forming an alliance with the other five dynasties, because if they really wanted to fight each other, they could wait until all six emperors had become almighty experts like the Celestial Emperors of the Heaven. Then it would still not be too late to continue the feuds. It was perfectly normal to find a few reliable allies to support and help each other before they were strong enough.
The emperors and ministers of six dynasties in this great hall were all heroes with superior intelligence, so they could naturally distinguish whether Wu Qi's proposal was good or bad. The alliance was of great benefit to them all, and they had absolutely no reason to oppose the proposal. Of course, the details of the six-dynasties alliance still needed to be carefully negotiated. Although it was said that they would help each other and advance together, as to what extent and at what cost, as well as how to guarantee the common interests of the six dynasties and their respective interests, all the details had to be discussed carefully.
When these emperors and ministers looked at each other, their hearts were filled with a strange sense of excitement.
They all regarded themselves as heroes, and those who sat near them, those who came from the other dynasties, were similar to themselves in terms of fame and ability. They had fought each other fiercely more than two thousand years ago only for the right to reign such a small territory, which just did not seem worth it right now.
And now, instead of fighting with each other, they were about to join forces and fight against outsiders? At the thought of the wonderful scene, the emperors and ministers of the six dynasties almost burst into laughter.
The emperors of six dynasties looked at each other with strange smiles on their faces.
Ying Zheng snorted coldly, his fingers drumming on the table as he said, "Well, I think the six-dynasties alliance is an excellent idea. But, we can't stay together forever." After considering for a moment, he smiled at the other five emperors and said, "I propose that when we completely defeat the Heaven and unify Pangu Continent, our alliance will automatically be nullified, and we will fight each other again. What do you think?"
Everyone applauded and cheered, praising and expressing their approval toward Ying Zheng's proposal.
'First defeat the Heaven, then unify Pangu Continent, and finally fight with each other to determine the winner.' The winner would be the emperor, and the losers would be his ministers. To all of them, this was the fairest and most reasonable course of action!
Looking at the laughing and cheering crowd, Wu Qi threw out his third condition.
"Then, please go back and take inventory of your treasury, and find out how many treasures you still have!"
Wu Qi spoke slowly about the terms of his agreement with Hei Mo, and the great hall fell silent.
Except for Yan Dan, the emperors of the other five dynasties stared at Wu Qi as if they were looking at a ghost. Ying Zheng and Wei Wuji, in particular, reacted most vehemently, looking like they were about to draw their swords and hack Wu Qi into two halves!
"Are you robbing us?" At last, Qu Ping uttered in a trembling voice the words that was lingering in the minds of most of the people present.