Chapter 751 – Nothing More Than Playing House (I)
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
The path of merchants was always established on cold hard realism, so only when the prize had fallen into their bag would they feel peace and happiness. In addition, any sort of befuddling fog would be utterly worthless when torn away.
The Tang Seventeenth Master decided to stop thinking about that person's identity, deciding that he would first find them and then think about it. His gaze moved from the manager's face to the bishop, upon which he said, "The Second Master's orders this time were exceptionally clear. This person must be found and then put under our control. If that's not possible, I will die, and the rest of you will die. And you will die the most miserably of all."
This bishop was a spy that the Tang clan had placed in the Orthodoxy. Now that he had been driven from the capital, although he had managed to escape with his life, he was useless. If he could not display his loyalty, ability, or use in this matter of the Cinnabar Pill, then his end would most likely be very inglorious.
The bishop's face paled at these words and the manager's back was soaked in cold sweat. The pair were both keenly aware that this matter involved the internal competition for power within the clan back in Wenshui. Although their statuses were not sufficient to know all the facts, they both knew that Wenshui City had been ravaged by no small number of storms over these past two years.
The struggle between the branches was growing fiercer by the day, even rather bitter. Although no one had died yet, the entire conflict was pervaded by the faint scent of blood. The most important sign was that the illness of the chief branch's master had relapsed, and at the beginning of this year, the Tang Second Master, whose reputation had been growing and growing…fathered a son.
The Wenshui Tang clan had existed for countless generations, so it had its own rules.
Many years ago, the Old Master decided that the chief branch would inherit the clan, thus making Tang Thirty-Six the sole heir and grandson of the Tang clan.
In the period before Tang Thirty-Six formally inherited the clan, the Old Master had forbidden any of the other branches from giving birth to a third generation of male offspring.
This was an extremely callous rule, but thankfully, the masters of the various branches had all had some success in their cultivation and had lifespans of centuries. They could be patient.
At the beginning of this year, this rule was finally broken.
The Tang Second Master fathered a son.
Besides Tang Thirty-Six, he was the sole male descendant of the Tang clan's third generation.
What did this mean? Had the Old Master finally changed his mind on who would inherit the clan? Was the chief branch going to fall out of favor? Or was it that the Tang Second Master no longer had the patience to keep waiting and decided to plainly and boldly express his ambitions to seize power?
Ambitions naturally had to be established on strength. At the moment, the other branches of the Tang clan, led by the Second Master, had gained the clear advantage in this conflict.
In the massive coup two years ago in the capital and in the few years preceding it, the Tang Second Master had played an extremely important role. As a representative of Shang Xingzhou, he had traveled across the continent, serving as a liaison with the various factions so that they could work together to overturn Tianhai's rule. In the coup itself, he had played an irreplaceable role in breaking the capital's Imperial Design.
In this grand undertaking, the Tang Second Master had played his part perfectly, and also in a very low-key manner. He had brought unimaginable benefits to the Wenshui Tangs while also acting in accordance with the Tang clan's style. As a result, he had received the support, even worship, of many of his clansmen.
If he had not failed to kill Wang Po in the winter of that year, perhaps he would have already replaced Tang Thirty-Six's father…
Upon hearing that this was the Tang Second Master's order, the manager and bishop instantly dispelled any ideas of begging for forgiveness or escaping by a fluke.
They could only quickly find that person, and if they couldn't control him, they had to kill him.
Perhaps because the Tang Second Master's coldness was too well-known, or perhaps because the Tang Seventeenth Master was sitting in the courtyard and keeping watch on them the entire time, the doctors performed their analysis of the ingredients far faster than imagined. On the dusk of that day, the doctors and the managers of the Tang clan in charge of transportation and local products finally obtained an preliminary conclusion.
Where the ingredients were produced, where they were transported, where they passed through, which places they could be found, how much was used in Tianliang County over the course of a single year—countless pieces of information were gathered together. Accompanied by the clacking of the abacus, they became numbers on the paper. Finally, they pointed to an extremely remarkable place on the map.
This place was in the northeast of Tianliang County. It was a sparsely inhabited and frigid place. Amongst the mountains was a small village called Gaoyang that had practically been abandoned.
On the other side of the inn wall, within the Sacred Hospital, as the injuries of the wounded within gradually improved, the atmosphere gradually relaxed.
The atmosphere in the room at the very back was still oppressive and gloomy.
The young array master had still not awakened. His once-dark skin was now a pale white, his breathing short and feeble.
An Hua sat by the window, deeply exhausted, her eyes closed in rest.
Under the orders of the Mount Song Army headquarters, she and the clerics and doctors of the Sacred Hospital had expended great efforts in treating the array master. What they could be certain of now was that the young array master could last for seven days, two more days than the cleric's initial assessment. Naturally, she was the reason for this.
The Sacred Light technique of the Thirteen Divisions of Radiant Green was no weaker than the divine arts of the Li Palace, otherwise Holy Maiden Xu Yourong would not have chosen the Thirteen Divisions of Radiant Green as her place of study.
But it was still not enough, because…the Cinnabar Pill would only appear after ten days.
The young array master was ranked first on the priority list of patients in the Mount Song Army headquarters to receive the medicine. As long as the headquarters received the pill, he would get it and be able to survive.
But An Hua knew that no matter how hard she, the clerics, or the military doctors worked, they could not help him last until that moment.
Hope seemed right before their eyes and seemed to be getting ever closer, but upon careful examination, it was still so far away.
There was always a day in which manpower would be exhausted. This was a fact that could easily cause anguish, even despair.
After concluding her meditation, An Hua opened her eyes and walked to the bed to examine the array master's current state.
Perhaps because she had gone for days without rest while constantly taking care of others, she felt that the young array master's face was becoming clearer and clearer.
How could she help him survive? Was there any other hope? Perhaps she could request an archbishop of the Li Palace to assist?
No, even if those great personages were willing to assist the young array master, they would not be able to reach this place in time. Besides, other than dispatching a considerable number of clerics and doctors to the frontlines, the Li Palace spent the rest of its time acting very subdued. From morning to dusk, from spring to autumn and then to winter, its gates were shut and under heavy guard.
And Mao Qiuyu, a Prefect of the Orthodoxy, would never so lightly step out of the Li Palace.
This state had already persisted for two years.
Because the Pope had left the capital two years ago.
No one knew where the young Pope currently was, or even if he was alive.
An Hua did not care for matters of the outside world, nor did she know of the current circumstances of the dynasty or Xuelao City. She only knew that the two had been at war for the past two years and many people had died.
The sects and noble families of the south had played an extremely important role in this war. Both the Tianhai Divine Empress and the venerable master Shang Xingzhou had regarded the confluence of the north and south with particular importance for this exact reason. The new generation of cultivators had also begun to formally step onto history's stage, with the youths of the Mount Li Sword Sect, Scholartree Manor, and the Six Ivies having the most outstanding performance.
Of course, compared to that person's first appearance on the battlefield, the rest of those youths could only be said to be playing house and simply weren't worth mentioning.
Although they were all youths, there was still a difference.
That was the first time he had appeared before the people's eyes after leaving the capital, and also the last time.
It had been a refreshing autumn day. Cavalry charged to and fro and smoke rose up from all sides.
His one thousand swords attacked as one. Countless demons bled their green blood and died, transforming the plains into a sea of blood.
Amongst the confusion, a weighty Qi like the mountains or seas emerged as Demon General Hai Di struck with all his power, tearing apart the clouds and the earth, causing the entire world to change.
The young Pope, heavily wounded, collapsed and then vanished.
It was like he had done this deed, appeared before so many people, taken such a massive risk, killed so many demons, bled so much blood, received such heavy injuries, all to tell a few people in the world a single thing: 'I am still alive.'
This was truly like a small child playing house.