Book 9 Chapter 7 The Man Who Has Nothing Will Fear Nothing
“Qingshan.” With a helpless expression, Zhuge Yuanhong smiled bitterly and said, “I want you to face the Qing Hu Island using a different appearance. This is the third thing you need to do. It can’t be helped.”
“Teacher?” Teng Qingshan listened attentively.
At the side, Elder Wu said, “Qingshan, ever since what happened at the Great Yan Mountain, twelve Innate Experts have been killed. Now, out of Yangzhou’s thirteen counties, twelve of them are under the Qing Hu Island’s control. The Gui Yuan Sect is the only one left which has not been destroyed by the Qing Hu Island. Naturally, the Qing Hu Island views the Gui Yuan Sect as a thorn in their side.
Zhuge Yuanhong continued saying, “If it wasn’t because the Martial Ancestor became an Emptiness Realm Expert and affrighted the Qing Hu Island, the Qing Hu island would have already obliterated the Gui Yuan Sect.”
TLN: Martial Ancestor is Elder Wu
Teng Qingshan nodded.
In the past, the great army of the Qing Hu Island had almost attacked the Gui Yuan Sect, but they had retreated in fear because of the Emptiness Realm Expert, the Martial Ancestor.
“However, Qingshan… the old Blind Swordmaster of the Qing Hu Island is reaching the end of his life. I reckon that he only has a life expectancy of twenty more years.” Zhuge Yuanhong said solemnly, “An Emptiness Realm Expert can only live for at most five hundred years. This is unchangeable! You should know what it means if he only has twenty years left to live!”
Teng Qingshan’s expression turned solemn.
“Before his death, the Blind Swordmaster will definitely try his best to eliminate all threats so that the future generations of the Qing Hu Island can keep their thousand-year-old base safe,” Zhuge Yuanhong said solemnly. “And Qing Hu Island’s biggest threat is undoubtedly the Gui Yuan Sect! Our sect and their sect are the only sects which exist in the region of Yangzhou, therefore, it will be either their destruction or ours!”
Teng Qingshan nodded.
“Teacher, I understand.”
“Therefore, during the four years of your absence, the Gui Yuan Sect has been laying low and enduring patiently. We just don’t want to fight a battle of life or death with the Qing Hu Island!” Zhuge Yuanhong said helplessly, “In terms of the strength of the Emptiness Realm Experts, if the Martial Ancestor is compared with that Blind Swordmaster…”
Elder Wu shook his head and smiled as he interjected, “I am not as powerful as him.”
“And as for the number of ordinary disciples and soldiers…” Zhuge Yuanhong said with a helpless smile, “The Gui Yuan Sect is no match for the Qing Hu Island. The Qing Hu Island has a foundation of twelve counties. Despite the fact that we possess the Elixir of the North Sea, if we battle forcefully against the millions of soldiers from the Qing Hu Island, all of the Gui Yuan Sect will be destroyed.”
“It took the Gui Yuan Sect a thousand years to establish this foundation.”
“I don’t want to fight a battle of survival with the Qing Hu Island.” A cold glint flashed in Zhuge Yuanhong’s eyes as he said, “I am not willing to let several ten thousand disciples die like this.”
Zhuge Yuanhong stared at Teng Qingshan and said, “Qingshan, I hope you can go against the Qing Hu Island using a different appearance. You should fight against the Qing Hu Island as an independent and carefree Emptiness Realm Expert who is not part of any sect! An Emptiness Realm Expert like that will give the Qing Hu Island a headache. It will even frighten the Qing Hu Island’s authoritative figures! By that time, they will be spending all their energy on guarding against you. Thus, they will not start a war with the Gui Yuan Sect so easily.”
“Haha…” Elder Wu laughed and said, “Presently, in the Land of the Nine Prefectures, the most frightening people aren’t the Emptiness Realm Experts of the Supreme Sects but those Emptiness Realm Experts who are carefree and not tied down to a sect. The so-called ‘Alcoholic Lunatic,’ Tan Cang, is an example. Back in the day, the Ying Family provoked him. Although the Alcoholic Lunatic had yet to attain the Emptiness Realm during that time, his speed was fast enough that even the ones who had attained the Emptiness Realm Culmination weren’t able to catch him. The Alcoholic Lunatic charged into the base of the Ying Family and killed nine Innate Experts before escaping speedily. However, the Ying Family weren’t able to do anything to him!”
“They couldn’t catch up with his speed.”
“The Alcoholic Lunatic is an old monster of over four hundred years in age. His relatives have all died. He has no family and no sect. Therefore, it’s impossible to threaten the Alcoholic Lunatic. In the end, the Ying Family chose to yield, and settle the hatred and revenge through a discussion.”
Elder Wu smiled and looked at Teng Qingshan. “If you have a sect, the sect would weigh you down, and it would also mean that you have a weakness.”
“If you have no relatives and no sect, you would have no weakness. None of the Supreme Sects would want to provoke such an Emptiness Realm Expert.” Elder Wu laughed and said, “Qingshan, this is the kind of person that your teacher wants you to be.”
“Haha…” Teng Qingshan guffawed and responded, “Teacher, this move of yours is fierce!
“A man who has nothing will fear nothing… A sectless Emptiness Realm Expert would indeed
give a headache to other sects.” Teng Qingshan too understood his teacher’s intention.
Zhuge Yuanhong added hastily, “If you fight against the Qing Hu Island, you must know there’s a limit! You must make thr Qing Hu Island feel threatened and fearful, but you mustn’t force the Qing Hu Island into a state of frenzy. If the Qing Hu Island goes mad, it might ask the Shooting Sun God Mountain, Snow Hawk Hall, and the other sects for help. The Shooting Sun God Mountain has a divine beast, a demonic wolf that runs faster than Emptiness Realm Experts on land and even faster underground.”
“Oh?” Teng Qingshan said in shock.
It was indeed true that a few sects in the Land of the Nine Prefectures understood the Language of Beasts. After all, these ancient sects had existed for an unknowingly great number of years. So, it was not weird for the Shooting Sun God Mountain and Emperor Yu’s Hall sects to possess Emptiness Realm Demonic Beasts. In the past, Teng Qingshan had heard that a Godly Thunderbolt Hawk had attacked Xiao Yao Palace.
“Teacher, don’t worry. I know the limits.” Teng Qingshan smiled. In actuality, he was thinking to himself, “I hope Little Blue can come sooner. With Little Blue here, the Qing Hu Island can only tolerate the torment.”
“However, Little Blue will only arrive after a year and a half. Hm… The Six Legged Bladelike Chi is only one step away from attaining the Emptiness Realm. It appears to be cultivating the Metal Elemental Dao. I hope the Six Legged Bladelike Chi can attain the Emptiness Realm as soon as possible.” Teng Qingshan thought to himself.
Since humans did not know how to fly, even if they attained the Emptiness Realm Culmination, their flying speed wouldn’t be very fast.
However, if Teng Qingshan rode the Six Legged Bladelike Chi and assisted it with the Power of the Heavens and Earth, the Six Legged Bladelike Chi’s already shockingly fast speed would increase even more, surpassing the flying speed of an Emptiness Realm Expert.
The skill which the Six Legged Bladelike Chi was most adept at was digging underground.
After deciding on three plans, Teng Qingshan knew roughly the direction he would be heading.
“Teacher, about the second thing you said… Amongst the experts listed in the 《Heavenly Ranking》, who are are reaching the end of their lifespan? I am not quite sure about this,” said Teng Qingshan.
Zhuge Yuanhong laughed and said, “Qingshan, in the top ten of the 《Heavenly Ranking》, there are only four aged under 100 years old as well as four aged above 150 years old. However, there are no experts aged over 190 years old. Do you know why?”
“There are no experts aged over 190 years old?” Teng Qingshan was somewhat puzzled.
Normally, after the attainment of the Innate Realm, one’s strength would increase as one’s age increased.
Between the 60-year-old Zhuge Yuanhong and the 190-year-old Zhuge Yuanhong, who was stronger? It was obviously the 190-year-old Zhuge Yuanhong!
“Why aren’t there any?” Teng Qingshan said bemusedly.
Zhuge Yuanhong laughed and answered, “Actually, the 《Heavenly Ranking》 has an unspoken rule… Anyone who is over 190 years old will not be recorded in the 《Heavenly Ranking》.”
“Eh?” The answer stunned Teng Qingshan.
“The Golden Dan Innate Experts aged over 190 years old have two endings… They either attain the Emptiness Realm before dying or die of old age! Of course, almost all the Golden Dan Innate Experts who are over the age of 190 will die of old age during the last ten years of their life because of the immense mental pressure.
“To be honest, whether they die of old age or attain the Emptiness Realm, it won’t be recorded in the 《Heavenly Ranking》!”
“It’s impossible for a Golden Dan Innate Expert to occupy a place on the 《Heavenly Ranking》 until they dies of old age. That would be too depressing… Therefore, when the expert reaches 190 years old, their name and information is removed from the 《Heavenly Ranking》. Whether they die of old age or make a breakthrough and attain the Emptiness Realm is left to the imagination of the future generations.”
Teng Qingshan understood it then.
“Qingshan, I have a list of names here.”
Zhuge Yuanhong took out a sheet of paper from the desk at the side and expounded, “There are five people on this list. The youngest is 186 years old and is ranked second of the 《Heavenly Ranking》. The other four are over 190 old… These five people are not far from attaining the Emptiness Realm.”
Teng Qingshan took the list.
“Unfortunately, out of the five people, only one is without a sect, while the other four are disciples of the eight Supreme Sects.” Zhuge Yuanhong said as he pointed at the third name on the list, “It’s this guy, Hu Yanshuo! If you want to recruit anyone, I am afraid you can only recruit this Hu Yanshuo.
Teng Qingshan too sighed inwardly.
The youngest of the other four people was 186 years old. He must be dreaming of possessing the ‘Grass of Immortality.’ It was a pity. If these people consumed the Grass of Immortality and their lifespan increased another two hundred years, they would definitely be able to attain the Emptiness Realm. However, these four people were part of the eight Supreme Sects.
Even if they were grateful toward Teng Qingshan, would they work for him?
They might instead be enemies in the future!
Therefore, Teng Qingshan’s only choice was Hu Yansuo, the one who did not belong to a sect.
“Teacher, you asked me to train a group of men in south of Yangzhou. Where should I get those men?” Teng Qingshan asked.
Zhuge Yuanhong picked out a scroll from the table and rolled it out. He smiled and said as he pointed on the scroll, “Qingshan, take a look here… This is the entire map of Yangzhou. In the scope of Yangzhou, the place that has the most bandits is undoubtedly this Tai Ah Mountain Range, which runs through the land of three counties and has a ridgeline of almost six hundred Li.”
Teng Qingshan focused his eyes on the location Zhuge Yuanhong pointed at.
“In the Tai Ah Mountain Range, there are many gangs of bandits. There are eight great gangs, and countless minor robbers and bandits.” Zhuge Yuanhong smiled and said, “Qingshan, although these bandits are said to be very vicious, most of them are very loyal. Many of them are dauntless and have no fear of death. It is not difficult to train a group of men at this place.”
Teng Qingshan nodded.
“We don’t need these minor robbers to be very strong. We just need them to be dauntless and obedient!”
“When the Gui Yuan Sect and the Qing Hu Island go into battle, we can make this elite troop in the south consume the Elixir of the North Sea and wear Fiery Gilt Steel Armor. Even if we only train one thousand cavalrymen, they will be able to disperse the army of one hundred thousand,” Zhuge Yuanhong said with great confidence. “Of course, all of this is only possible if the Fiery Gilt Steel Armor is as powerful as you said.”
The Elixir of the North Sea could make an expert reach the peak of the Postliminary Realm.
So, even an army of one thousand First Rated Warriors would be horrifying.
If those soldiers were equipped with Fiery Gilt Steel Armor, also called Innate Realm Armor, as they attacked the ordinary armies, those ordinary armies would be annihilated.
“Of course.” Teng Qingshan nodded and said, “The Tai Ah Mountain Range has several hundred thousand bandits. It won’t be difficult to train a troop of elite cavalrymen from among those bandits. Teacher… I will send the Fiery Gilt Steel here immediately. This Fiery Gilt Steel is used to forge war armors, therefore, we must be cautious. We cannot let the outside world know of this information. If the other sects come to know of this, it will be terrible for us.”
“Indeed.” Whenever Zhuge Yuanhong recalled the marvelous description of the Fiery Gilt Steel, his heart filled with anticipation.