Chapter 330 - The Four Seasons of the God Nation
The road leading into the God Nation was lined with blood trees on both sides. They stood tall and imposing, like monsters waiting to attack.
Taking in the familiar sweet scent made She Yu feel great.
The first batch of blood trees that were used to spread the blood poison had been turned into fertilizer after they had produced seeds. The blood trees she now saw were germinated from those seeds. These second generation blood trees had grown rapidly in the past year and were now extremely large.
This insane rate of growth completely defied the laws of nature.
It was flowering season and blood tree blossoms could be seen everywhere. Scarlet was the landscape’s dominant color, which made it look completely different from the Avalon of Five Elements. The flowers were not in shades of red though. They were mostly a deep black or a dull white, with the occasional sky blue. Many people enjoyed plucking these flowers as decorations for their homes.
A delicate yet intoxicating fragrance filled the air as She Yu gently plucked one of the black flowers. This scent was enjoyed by god elementalists, but would drive normal elementalists mad.
By this time next year, the trees here would be filled with fruits. Further refinement of these fruits would turn them into a type of natural blood crystal that could be used to enhance a god elementalist’s training. Known as jade fruits, they were slightly different from the blood crystals nurtured within blood fiends.
She Yu was looking forward to the appearance of the jade fruits. The successful growth of jade fruits would further strengthen the God Nation’s rule.
The domestication of blood fiends as a means to obtain blood crystals was the main reason why the God Nation was able to stabilize so quickly. Being able to farm blood crystals allowed the God Nation to convert elementalists on a massive scale. With the arrival of the jade fruits, the God Nation would have even greater amounts of resources to further strengthen their position.
The higher ups had also attached great importance to this event and had already begun preparations to harvest these fruits on a large scale.
The God Nation’s winter, which came once every four years, would arrive one month after the harvest. Blood trees would swiftly wither away after their fruits were harvested. They would turn into ash, transforming the entire landscape. The once vibrant and colorful sight would quickly become a world of gray ash soon after the great harvest. Because of this, the God Nation’s winter was known as the "Winter of Ash."
The God Nation’s vitality was splendid, but short.
The Winter of Ash was a long season and the citizens would have to bear with the dull, lifeless environment for almost a year.
During this period, however, the people had important things to do. They would have to scour through the ashes to find new life—the blood tree’s seeds. The gathered seeds would be sent to a special facility for assessment. Seeds that were determined to have a great degree of transformation would be kept and sowed after Winter of Ash. Those that did not become stronger would be destroyed.
Only the strong survive. This was the God Nation’s number one rule.
After the Winter of Ash came the popping spring. Blood trees would sprout and grow to immense heights during this season that lasted for a year. This season was named as such because the trees would grow so fast that popping and crackling noises could be heard from all over.
Next was the resplendent summer, a season of blooming flowers. The flowers were so radiant that they shone brightly even at night.
It was presently the resplendent summer.
The autumn of jade fruits came after.
Each cycle lasted for four years, and up until now, the God Nation had yet to experience one full cycle. One of the high level advisors in the palace had told her that the first generation of blood trees were out of sync with the cycle. This new generation should begin to settle into the correct rhythm.
The God Nation was indeed a young nation.
All of a sudden, the ground trembled. A group of armored wolf riders appeared with a bang. Their mounts were the famous ardent flower night wolves.
Night wolves were native to the Fire Prairie and had a sleek coat of jet black fur. The Beast Venom Temple had created a new breed of night wolves that had red flowery patterns strewn across their black bodies. Ardent flower night wolves were larger and much faster than steeds. They had incredible endurance as well and were reportedly able to continuously charge forward for 10 days and 10 nights.
The Beast Venom Temple was unsatisfied with the ardent flower night wolves as their true aim was to breed large flying beasts. They felt that nothing on land could ever come close to competing with something that could fly.
The Beast Venom Temple had adopted the name of these wolves from the Avalon of Five Elements’ Ardent Flower Division.
Ardent flower night wolves became wildly popular in the God Nation immediately after they were released. These beasts were cheap, easy to maintain, and extremely hardworking.
The ardent flower night wolves used by high ranking officials were of the best grade and had immense fighting prowess in addition to the aforementioned advantages. They were extremely well suited for battle with a rider, never backing down once the fight had started.
"Congratulations, the Young Master is extremely delighted by your performance. He has specially ordered us to ride down and give you a proper welcome! Salute!"
Clanging sounds could be heard as the other riders raised up their weapons to salute She Yu.
She Yu bowed slightly in return and replied, "It’s all thanks to His Highness’s meticulous arrangements. Has he been well?"
The rider said cheerfully, "His mood has improved of late, and he has been going out into the sun quite a bit more than before."
"That’s good to hear. the Young Master’s health is of utmost importance," said She Yu, her voice carrying a tinge of joy.
There was only one person who carried the title of "Young Master" throughout the entire God Nation. He was the "Sick Tiger of the Blood Nation" Bei Shuisheng. The Young Master had been afflicted with a strange sickness since he was a young and had almost died from it several times. Bei Shuisheng later met the Holy Emperor. Being a man who cherished talent, the Holy Emperor painstakingly saved him.
After the God Nation was founded, the Holy Emperor built a palace for the Young Master. He filled it with all sorts of artifacts that were capable of maintaining the Young Master’s life force. Although his condition gradually stabilized, the Young Master could never leave his palace.
The Young Master called his new home the "Cold Palace" and often joked that it was even colder here than in the ones built to incarcerate imperial concubines that had flouted the rules.
When his mood was good, the Young Master enjoyed sunbathing by the palace’s main entrance. Those who knew him well quickly picked this up and used it as an indicator for his mood.
Everyone loved and respected the Young Master for his huge contributions to the God Nation. The Holy Emperor was too engrossed in his training to handle the nation’s affairs. As a result, most of the planning, strategies, and laws were the work of the Young Master. Instigating Ye Baiyi to defect was also his idea, and it was one that he managed to carry out with great success.
After Ye Baiyi converted, the Young Master gave him control of the army and ordered for a palace to be built for him.
Ye Baiyi did not let the Young Master down. He reformed the entire army and began to devise military tactics that were suited to the god elementalists’ fighting style. Under his reforms, the God Nation’s military was able to stabilize the situations at the front lines.
The Young Master was also behind many other highly important actions, such as the exorcism of the Induction Ground and the widespread domestication of blood fiends.
Every now and then, She Yu would think of how great it would be if the Young Master was completely healthy again.
She Yu arrived at the cold palace three days later.
A lazy youth was lying down behind the main hall’s doorway, basking in the sliver of sunlight that came through the open doors at an angle. Beside him was a teapot with a long handle and half a cup of tea.
She Yu walked up to the doorway and noticed a neatly placed floormat with a table on top of it. On the table sat a complete tea set.
The two of them sat on opposite sides of the doorway.
A grin appeared on Bei Shuisheng’s pale face as he chipped, "I’m sorry but you’ll have to do it yourself."
She Yu smiled sweetly and started to boil some water to brew the tea.
"Come, tell me about the interesting things you saw on this journey. Being stuck in this lousy place is boring me to death," said the young man, his eyes filled with wonder.
She Yu felt a tinge of heartache as she looked at the young man in front of her. In that moment, the almighty the Young Master appeared to just be an ordinary boy. A smile crept up on her lips, and she gently spoke, "Nothing much happened, really. The Jadeite Forest is also experiencing a flowering season—a season where plume flowers are in full bloom. Plume flowers look like pink feathers and give off a melodious ringing sound when scattered by the wind. I suppose girls are more interested in stuff like that. At night though, the God Nation is much more beautiful…"
The young man listened intently, not uttering a single word as he did so.
After a while, he picked up his teacup and brought it to his lips. "The tea has turned cold," he muttered with a frown on his face.
He opened the teapot and saw that it was empty.
"Bring me some hot tea."
Half of the long-handled teapot crossed the doorway toward She Yu.
She finally understood why the Young Master used a teapot with such a long handle.
She Yu hurriedly grabbed her pot of freshly brewed tea and walked to the doorway.
The Young Master warmly reminded, "Be careful not to cross the threshold. You won’t be able to handle the things inside."
She Yu carefully poured the freshly brewed tea into the long-handled teapot.
The Young Master swiftly downed a cup of tea and said, "Please continue. The world outside of this palace is indeed interesting."
She Yu told him about Duanmu Huanghun getting drunk in a brothel and challenging her to a fight.
The Young Master called him a proper man.
When she mentioned that Duanmu Huanghun had reorganized the Society of Excellence, the Young Master sighed.
She moved on to talk about Shi Xueman’s use of the God-subduing Peak to ambush the diplomatic mission, much to the Young Master’s delight. He frantically clapped his hands and praised Shi Xueman’s boldness.
The Young Master laughed heartily when he heard about the conflict between the new citizens and the aristocratic families, calling them a bunch of clowns who had long lost their edge.
She spoke of how Shi Xueman was discharged from the North Sea Division after kidnapping Duanmu Huanghun and made her way to Peace City instead. She Yu continued her story, talking about Ai Hui’s Five Elemental Eight Treasures Porridge Feast and how all the members of the Central Pine Faction flocked from all over with the ingredients they needed for the porridge.
The Young Master had a faraway look as he commented that the Central Pine Faction must be made up of truly loyal friends.
She got to the part where the Venerable Volcano dragged two vice division leaders and stood guard at the door for a bowl of porridge. All this talk about the Eight Treasures Porridge made
The Young Master salivate as he imagined just how amazing it must taste. He muttered that if they ever caught Lou Lan he would definitely get him to cook lots of porridge.
The Young Master was glad to hear that their operation in Cloud Ridge City was a success.
"I’m glad we didn’t choose Peace City as our target. It would be a waste if such an interesting group of people were killed just like that."
She Yu stared blankly at the Young Master.
The Young Master stretched his back and picked up the long-handled teapot. Standing up, he said, "All right, rest time’s over. Back to work. Everyone’s living such colorful lives, so I guess I have to strive hard too. Thanks for the nice, long chat. I’m sorry I can’t send you off."
The young man beamed. "All the best!"
He waved at She Yu before returning to the darkness.