Chapter 329 - The Fall Of Cloud Ridge
Scarlet Sand Forest was a small city at the border between Jadeite Forest and Blood of God. Beyond this city, there was Fire Prairie, a territory of God Nation now.
She Yu was leisurely sipping her tea. Beside her, Jadeite Forest’s decision maker, Gongwen You, had a relaxed look on his face as well.
The recent vicious attack by the God-subduing Peak on Blood of God’s diplomatic mission had caused the diplomatic mission to suffer heavy casualties. Jadeite Forest was severely embarrassed by this incident. The higher-ups of Jadeite Forest were extremely infuriated. Not only did they want the Elders Guild to give an explanation for the incident, they also requested that someone be dispatched to escort the Blood of God’s diplomatic mission.
As such, Gongwen You was being dispatched to escort the diplomatic mission.
At this moment, a report was being sent to him.
After he read the report, a vexed look appeared on his face. After a long while, he sighed and passed the report to She Yu and said coldly, "Your henchmen have succeeded."
After She Yu read the report, she sighed as well, "What a pity, the brave warriors of God Nation. However, it’s still worth celebrating. We shall use tea in place of alcohol and toast to this victory."
Gongwen You stayed calm and did not move.
She Yu was not angry. She finished the cup of tea herself and said leisurely, "This time around, our partnership is flawless. Mr Gongwen has indeed worked very hard. Without Mr Gongwen, this victory would not be possi…"
"Enough!" Gongwen You interrupted She Yu and flew into a rage.
She Yu merely smiled, "Does Mr Gongwen feel that you have let down the Avalon of Five Elements? After all, you are born of Avalon of Five Elements, it’s hard for you not to think of the good old days. However, the Avalon of Five Elements is outdated and the Elders Guild is obsolete. They are fundamentally old and decadent. Take a closer look, do you see how lazy they are? The God Nation’s warriors did not even meet any resistance. Oh! They have much more important things on their minds now. That future empty crown is much more important than establishing a lesser Avalon of Five Elements."
Gongwen You stared at She Yu, resembling a furious lion that was going to pounce on its prey at any moment.
She Yu smiled sweetly and continued, "Jadeite Forest is no longer part of the Avalon of Five Elements. Mr Gongwen, where does your loyalty lie?"
Like a punctured balloon, Gongwen You immediately calmed down and replied, "Forget it, I’m going to have a bad reputation this time around."
"Why does Mr Gongwen say that? I can see that Mr Gongwen has worked your heart out for Jadeite Forest. You’re a meritorious servant of Jadeite Forest."
Gongwen You regained his composure and replied, "Pardon me for being unreasonable. It will be better for us if the Elders Guild continues to be like this."
"As long as God Nation and Jadeite Forest continue to collaborate with sincerity, it will just be a matter of time before the Avalon of Five Elements collapses. The God Nation is willing to build an everlasting friendship with the Jadeite Forest." She Yu said grimly.
"An alliance with God Nation does not really benefit Jadeite Forest. The Avalon of Five Elements doesn’t need to be too powerful nor too weak. As long as everyone is harmonious, then our business can thrive." Gongwen You shook his head.
She Yu raised her eyebrows and replied, "The Elders Guild might not think like this. If they knew the operation this time around is being supported by Jadeite Forest, I’m afraid…"
Gongwen You burst into a laughter. However, his portly face was filled with disdain, "Are you trying to threaten me? So what if they know? Are they going to attack Jadeite Forest? Right now, they are the ones who are begging us, not the other way around."
"I wouldn’t dare," She Yu smiled, "No matter what, God Nation and Jadeite Forest have a pleasant collaboration this time around. In the future, our relationship might even be closer."
This time around, she had completed her mission flawlessly.
Sending a diplomatic mission to Jadeite Forest was a sham. Their real motive was to capture the attention of the Avalon of Five Elements.
"Pretending to advance along one path while secretly going along another" was a simple stratagem that always worked.
Another thing that made her even more happy was that Ai Hui was safe and sound.
Peace City, Swordsman Training Hall.
Duanmu Huanghun furrowed his eyebrows and thought pensively. Even though his questions had hit the nail on the head, he did not feel any sense of achievement. Identifying the problems was easy, but solving the problems was difficult.
Which path should they take?
Duanmu Huanghun understood how important this question was to them more than anyone else. Both he and Shi Xueman were from aristocratic families, however, their situations were completely different. He had seen more dark and treacherous plots and experienced more failures than Shi Xueman.
The others were seizing the moment to train, digesting the beneficial effects of the Eight Treasures Porridge.
Everyone knew that an opportunity like this was hard to come by. If not for Ai Hui, they would not have enjoyed such exceptional Eight Treasures Porridge. Amongst them, only Bangwan and Iron Lady were capable of eating such a delicacy without the help of Ai Hui.
Take a look at Venerable Volcano. He had paid such a huge price for just one bowl of porridge. Before he left, he even bade farewell to Ai Hui personally and promised that he would definitely help him if he was to encounter any troubles.
Yu Jin stayed motionlessly in her training state. The aura emitting from her body became increasingly concentrated.
In conclusion, Lou Lan’s Five Elemental Eight Treasures Porridge had two obvious beneficial effects.
The first obvious effect was that it helped in healing old injuries. Veterans like Tian Huzun and Yu Jin, who both had been through hundreds of battles, had accumulated countless internal injuries inside their bodies. These old injuries were usually situated in the depths of their bodies, or places that elemental energy was hard to reach, making it very difficult for them to heal them. Not only would these internal injuries affect their fighting capabilities negatively, they would also obstruct their training progress.
The second obvious effect was that it improved elemental energy’s connectivity within one’s body. Apart from Shi Xueman and Duanmu Huanghun, the rest had rather ordinary elemental energy connectivity. If not for the abundance of blood crystals obtained during the Battle of Central Pine City and Lou Lan’s elemental soups, everyone’s fighting capabilities would not have reached their current level.
Improving one’s connectivity with elemental energy would help him or her greatly in terms of future developments. This effect would be on full display during one’s everyday training.
In terms of mind and sky palace, Ai Hui and Shi Xueman were the only ones who benefited from the porridge. There were little improvements in this aspect for the rest.
Suddenly, a soldier ran hurriedly into the training hall and came before Lord Yu Jin. He hesitated, thinking whether he should speak or not.
Yu Jin opened his eyes and asked indifferently, "What’s the matter?"
"Sir Yu Jin, Cloud Ridge City is in trouble!" the soldier answered hastily.
"Cloud Ridge City?" Yu Jin was slightly surprised, but she maintained his composure and asked again, "What happened?"
"Blood elementalists have been discovered in Cloud Ridge City!"
Yu Jin widened her eyes abruptly. She quickly stood up as an ominous premonition arose in her heart.
Blood elementalists had been discovered in Cloud Ridge City?
Ai Hui, Shi Xueman and the rest stopped what they were doing. They could see the worry in each other’s eyes.
Cloud Ridge City.
Yu Jin stood beside the Cloud Ridge City’s mayor and listened to his account of the incident.
"... When our men discovered them, they did not run away. They probably knew they couldn’t put up a fight and all of them self-destructed and died. Subsequently, I’m afraid that there might still be blood elementalists lurking around the city and so I ordered a thorough search of the city. To our surprise, we did find some in the city. However, they are rather strong-willed and self-destructed the moment we found them. None of them were alive. We have yet to discover the reason why they are here…"
Yu Jin’s face turned ugly and interrupted the mayor, "Where are the locations that they self-destructed?"
"There are several places…"
"Lead the way!"
Suddenly, at this moment, they heard someone yelling, "Look at the sky!"
Yu Jin raised her head abruptly and her facial expression changed drastically.
A demonic color of blood was spreading throughout the everlasting sea of clouds above Cloud Ridge City. The color of blood was spreading extremely fast. In the blink of an eye, half of the sea of clouds was blood red in color.
Two words came out of Yu Jin’s clenched teeth.
On the third day of the Avalon of Five Elements’s Five Elemental Eight Treasures Porridge Feast, nineteen blood elementalists self-destructed in Cloud Ridge City.
The blood poison was spreading throughout the city with a terrifying speed. The sea of clouds above Cloud Ridge City had turned into a sea of blood. Yu Jin immediately ordered the entire city to evacuate quickly, preventing a large-scale disaster from taking place. The healers who arrived at the scene in haste had failed to purify the blood poison. Eventually, they found out that this was a brand new version of blood poison. This version was far more potent and it had a greater destructive power.
To prevent the blood poison from spreading to other places, Tong Gui and Yu Jin joined hands and smashed open the Cloud Ridge Mountain, allowing the lava within it to erupt for three straight days and flood the the blood poison-infected Cloud Ridge City. The Cloud Ridge City had disappeared completely.
Upon witnessing this sight, the citizens of Cloud Ridge City burst into tears.
Eventually, this disaster was known to many as "The Fall of Cloud Ridge".
Ai Hui and the rest looked at the sky and watched the Cloud Ridge Mountain erupt. The Armageddon-like scene silenced everyone.
Just like this, the Cloud Ridge City disappeared from the map.
During the Elders Guild’s emergency meeting, the atmosphere was extremely sombre.
"According to our investigation, this attack was planned. The blood elementalists came through stolen trading caravans and avoided our detection.Right now, there are two questions. Did the Blood of God come up with a new method of disguise? And did Jadeite Forest play a part in this incident?
"Definitely! We have investigated the places where the blood elementalists self-destructed. All of these places are vital areas. Clearly, the attacks have been meticulously planned. Without help from Jadeite Forest, the Blood of God would not have known so many details. Furthermore, those stolen trading caravans are tightly linked to Jadeite Forest."
"I suggest we do a thorough investigation on the trading caravans. If the Blood of God can infiltrate the Avalon of Five Elements that easily, then we have ourselves to blame. Resources might be important, but I don’t want us to be fearful everyday just because of resources."
"I support that idea!"
"I second that!"
"So how are we supposed to negotiate with Jadeite Forest now? Start a war?"
The other Elders remained silent. They obviously knew that Jadeite Forest had something to do with this incident, however, they did not dare to open their mouths and say they wanted to wage war on Jadeite Forest.
What would happen if they waged war on Jadeite Forest? If Jadeite Forest became a turncoat and joined the side of Blood of God, the Avalon of Five Elements would have zero chance of winning this war.
If they didn’t wage war on them, should they just let the incident go like this?
"We can’t start a war with them."
The Great Elder began to talk. His eyes were filled with the vicissitudes of life. "We don’t have the evidence to prove that they played a part in this incident. Even if we did, we can’t start a war. We will ignore Jadeite Forest first, and we must retaliate against the Blood of God. Send the God-subduing Peak to the front line. We must secure a victory to redeem our reputation."
The other Elders nodded their heads in unison.
The Great Elder continued with a deep voice, "Our real issue is, since Cloud Ridge City has been destroyed, our plan for a lesser Avalon of Five Elements has failed. What should we do now?"
The metal-attributed Peace City and the water-attributed Cloud Ridge City were the cornerstones for the plan of establishing the lesser Avalon of Five Elements. By building another three cities, a lesser Five Elemental Cycle could be established. The conditions for building a lesser Avalon of Five Elements were extremely strict. One missing city would result in the failure of this plan. Every city’s elemental attribute and location was supposed to be fixed.
The loss of the water-attributed Cloud Ridge City implied that the Five Elemental Cycle could never be achieved. This also meant that the plan of setting up a lesser Avalon of Five Elements had completely failed.
Cities like Peace City and Cloud Ridge City were chosen based on their ideal strategic locations. Other than these two cities, the remaining three cities’ locations were perfect as well.
Such places were hard to come by.
All the Elders became silent once more.
That’s right, the main issue they faced now was the failure of the plan to establish a lesser Avalon of Five Elements.