Book 6 Chapter 1 Blind Swordmaster
As the sun rose, a company of a hundred traveling merchants and guards were advancing slowly on the official road with Teng Qingshan was amidst them.
“I am now leaving Jiangning. I don’t know when I will be back.”
Teng Qingshan sighed in his heart.
The location they were at was already beyond the territory of the Jiangning County and over six hundred Li away from the Great Yan Mountain. Yesterday night, Teng Qingshan secretly passed through the underground lake and managed to escape the encirclement. He dug out the Splitting Mountain Axe and left the Great Yan Mountain. He then dashed all the way and headed northward. With Teng Qingshan’s speed, he managed to arrive in Huafeng City.
He leaped into Huafeng City. This was a city filled all manner of things.
Teng Qingshan completely changed his appearance. Simultaneously, he stole an old Yellow Maned Horse. Carrying the Yellow Maned Horse, he leaped over the walls of Huafeng City in the middle of the night. He performed Qinggong and dashed two hundred Li while carrying the Yellow Maned Horse. In the end, he mounted the Yellow Maned Horse leisurely and went a distance of thirty Li before arriving at a lodge next to the border of Jiangning County.
After he ate a luxurious breakfast in the lodge, the day brightened.
There were too many merchants. When they all woke up, there were not enough tables in the lodge and some people had to squeeze in around the table with Teng Qingshan. As Teng Qingshan happily treated the merchants with food, they became quite familiar with each other.
“Old Brother Qin Wei, look at yourself. You are thirty years old this year, right? Until now, I still don’t know which one of us is older.” The bold and rough man said.
“Thirty-six.” Teng Qingshan smiled, “Old Zhang, what about you?”
“Old Brother Qin Wei, you are one year older than me. I am thirty-five years old this year.” The bold and rough man smiled as he said, “But I have travelled in the wind and rain, blown by the wind and beaten by the sun, so I just look older. Look at you, old Brother Wei. You appear to be a northerner, but at a glance, you look thirty. You look younger than I do.”
Another big bearded young man riding on the horse approached and said, “Old Zhang, this Brother Qin is a master of inner strength, of course he looks younger.”
“Hei Zi.” Old Zhang smiled, “Look at you! You are only twenty-two, but you look the same age as me, Old Zhang, even though my oldest son is already twenty years old. Therefore, Hei Zi…….shave that big beard of yours.”
“Can’t do that. My wife Hua loves my big beard the most.” The young man named Hei Zi glared as he said.
Teng Qingshan laughed, “Old Zhang, don’t say any more. A young person venturing the earth gets bullied more easily. Hei Zi’s black beard is beneficial.”
“Listen to that. Brother Qin is really reasonable.” Hei Zi smiled proudly.
“However, Brother Qin.” Hei Zi lowered his volume and said, “You are doing business by buying an item which is abundant in a region and shipping it to a region which has a short supply of that item; this business is really dangerous! You need to rush from back to Yanzhou from Yangzhou, a distance of almost ten thousand Li! You have martial arts, but this trip has a distance of ten thousand Li! You are earning money with your life! Brother Qin……I think you should do business with a shorter trip distance.”
Teng Qingshan sighed, “It’s hard to survive if you don’t risk your life in this world! I will strive this once, and if the business is a success, there would be no need to worry for the rest of my life or the life of my family!”
“Such business is a trip of almost ten thousand Li. The profit of one business trip equals a dozen of our business trips.” Old Zhang sighed, “However, I am not as capable as you. I can only do business between Yangzhou and Qingzhou. We are familiar with the road between Yangzhou and Qingzhou and we have confidence in this. If I was young and with no ties, I might be able to travel a distance of ten thousand Li like Old Brother Qin Wei and profit greatly from it! If you don’t strive hard with your life at risk in this world, it would be extremely difficult to earn silver!”
“Yes, it’s difficult.” Hei Zi sighed emotionally.
Business was not easily done.
If it was within the region of Yangzhou, among the business between counties, it was already considered good to be able to earn twenty to thirty percent of the profit.
If you chose the right goods and conducted business between Qingzhou and Yangzhou, you could earn sixty to seventy of the profit in one trip.
The southernmost Yangzhou to the northernmost Yanzhou was a distance of over ten thousand Li. It was indeed earning money with your life. However, it was a long way, thus, there was a tenfold difference between prices of salt, tea, and other items at the two regions! If it was Yangzhou and the northernmost prairie, the difference between the prices of the two regions would be over tenfold!
Because the great tribes in the prairie fought each other, it was too chaotic. Merchants could easily be robbed! Normally, people would only do such business of high profit once, because if this one trip was a success, there would be no need to worry for the rest of your life.
In this world, as long as the method could earn great profit, there would be people trying with their life at risk.
At this moment, Teng Qingshan was acting as a merchant that had some inner strength and was doing this kind of business. Those who dared to do this kind of business were all somewhat good at fighting, otherwise, it would be courting death.
“This time, I am lucky to be able to go to Qingzhou with Old Zhang and the others. At least this road will be safer.” Teng Qingshan laughed.
The largest lake in Yangzhou was the Qing Lake.
Qing Lake was over ten Li wide, and a forty to fifty Li wide Island called Qing Hu Island was in the center of Qing Lake. Qing Hu Island, one of the Eight Supreme Sects in the land of the Nine Prefectures, was located here! On this Qing Lake, many boats could be easily seen because there were many people coming and going to the shore of the lake or the island.
Therefore, there were many boats.
“Boatman, propel the boat to the island.”
A young man and woman stepped onto one of the boats.
“Alright!” The boatman rowed the oar.
“Handsome one, did you hear? Last night, the Silver Dragon Army all returned to the Island.” The young woman with a heroic spirit said, “I wonder what the result of this expedition of the Silver Dragon Army is……There’s a rumor spreading throughout the whole world, saying that the great army of Qing Hu Island is stationed in the Great Yan Mountain of the Yi City for Emperor Yu’s Treasure. I wonder if there’s really a treasure and what the results were”
“I know about that. My father is the commander of the Silver Dragon Army and I just received news last night.“
The black-cloaked young man shook his head and sighed, “This time, many men of Qing Hu Island died. I was told that over ten thousand soldiers of the Silver Dragon Army died! As for Emperor Yu’s Treasure, I was told that it’s true. A cauldron filled with the Elixir of the North Sea seems to exist, but none of our people could obtain the cauldron.”
“Over ten thousand people? How is that possible?” The young woman exclaimed in shock, “Even if there were more than ten innate experts attacking, the losses wouldn’t be that great.”
“It was a powerful demonic beast. A very powerful demonic beast. Even many of our Law Enforcing Elders died.” The black-cloaked young man said softly.
There were many discussions about the Great Yan Mountain in today’s Qing Hu Island since a great number of Silver Dragon Soldiers had returned. The news naturally spread at a fast speed.
Qing Hu Island, Bolt Dragon Attic
Wearing a grey cloak, Gu Yong sat cross-legged. Eight people sat before him, also cross-legged and Zhao Danchen was among the eight people!
Qing Hu Island had a total of 21 innate experts, but 12 experts had died on this expedition! Only nine innate experts in the Bolt Dragon Attic were left. Zhao Danchen, who was among the nine innate experts, had only one arm.
“Abdicate? Island Lord! You have not been the Island Lord for a long time. You can’t abdicate now. You definitely can’t.” The golden-haired man said hastily. This time, during the Qing Hu Island’s expedition, a total of seven innate experts stayed and guarded Qing Hu Island. Among the seven innate experts, there were two Golden Dan Innate Experts and five Hollow Dan innate experts.
They were the younger ones. They only stayed to guard because they possessed great potential.
“Island Lord, the loss this time is not your fault. Island Lord, don’t talk about abdication.” Another Golden Dan innate expert spoke. It was a short and fat middle-aged man.
“Junior Martial Brother and Senior Martial Brother, you two should say no more. This time, Qing Hu Island’s constitution was greatly undermined and I, as the Island Lord, am responsible.” Gu Yong said coldly, “Now, Qing Hu Island lost more than half of the innate experts. Recuperation is needed instead of battle. With my temper, I am not suitable to lead Qing Hu Island.”
“The new Island Lord will either be Junior Martial Brother or Senior Martial Brother. Of course, I will report this to the Grand Supreme Elder and have him make the final decision.” Gu Yong said. Among the Golden Dan innate experts of Qing Hu Island, there were four people below the age of a hundred. Besides Gu Yong’s Junior Martial Sister who died, the other three were still alive. The three people being Gu Yong, Junior Martial Brother, and Senior Martial Brother.
Gu Yong had decided, and the others could not disobey.
Gu Yong then left the Bolt Dragon Attic and headed towards the Sword Edge Mountain alone.
Qing Hu Island, Sword Edge Mountain!
It was a large forbidden area within Qing Hu Island. Not even the core disciples were allowed to climb the Sword Edge Mountain. If anyone disobeyed this rule they would have their martial arts destroyed and be cast out of Qing Hu Island. Only the Law Enforcing Elders and the Island Lord had the right to enter Sword Edge Mountain.
Wearing a grey long cloak, Gu Yong walked on the mountain road step by step.
There was no expression on his face.
After a long time——
Gu Yong arrived at the top of the Sword Edge Mountain. Besides the stone house on the mountaintop, there were no other buildings. However, this stone house was covered with cobwebs, and it was obvious that no one has lived in here for a long time. In front of the stone house, there was a human-shaped stone sculpture that was vivid and lifelike.
Gu Yong came to a stone sculpture and knelt down immediately, making a “Bang” sound. He lowered his head and said, “Martial Ancestor, Yong is guilty!”
The surface of that stone sculpture suddenly cracked open and transformed into dust. As a gush of wind blew, the dust flew away, revealing the black-cloaked figure sitting cross-legged inside. His eyes were closed and his hair was completely silvery white. His expressionless face seemed like that of a stone sculpture.
“Sorry for disturbing Martial Ancestor’s training seclusion,” Gu Yong said.
Gu Yong knew……this Heavenly Sighted Swordmaster, also known as the Blind Swordmaster, had trained in seclusion for a long time. He had not drunk a drop of water and had no need to eat anything.
Dressed in a black cloak, the Blind Swordmaster sat there. The sky seemed to have darkened.
When facing the Blind Swordmaster, Gu Yong always felt as if he was facing the entire Heavens and Earth!
“Yong, is it about what happened in the Great Yan Mountain?” the Blind Swordmaster asked coldly with his eyes closed.
“Yes.” Gu Yong said in a deep voice, “Previously, Martial Brother must have told Martial Ancestor the news, but Martial Ancestor did not reply to us about the things that happened a few days ago. Yong knows……Martial Ancestor doesn’t want to obliterate the Gui Yuan Sect.” Back when he was at the Great Yan Mountain, Gu Yong had already ordered someone to pass a message to Qing Hu Island to tell the Grand Supreme Elder about the things that had happened.
However, the Blind Swordmaster ignored the message.
Gu Yong understood…..The Grand Supreme Elder was unwilling to undermine any more of Qing Hu Island’s vitality since Qing Hu Island did not belong to Gu Yong. Qing Hu Island was built with the blood and energy of numerous generations of disciples!
“How many Law Enforcing Elders died?” the Blind Swordmaster asked coldly.
“Twelve!” As Gu Yong spoke, he could feel his heart beating faster.
“Tell me all the details!” The Blind Swordmaster’s voice was like a trenchant sword piercing Gu Yong’s heart. Gu Yong responded with a quiver. Although he was the Island Lord…… in actuality, the one who made decisions for the entire Qing Hu Island was this Grand Supreme Elder who almost never left Sword Edge Mountain!
Gu Yong immediately told the entire story from the beginning to the end in a respectful tone.
“That’s what happened.” Gu Yong said respectfully.