Chapter 509 – In the Ruyi Commandery
As the lakewater poured into the hole, it formed an underground river that twisted and raged through the darkness.
In the beginning, the flow was very small, small enough to condense a single god seal.
However, as the river water surged, more and more rivers converged together and the flow became greater and greater, plunging into the depths underground like it was unstoppable.
After another series of twists and turns, the flow gradually established. It moved in the direction of the underground territory.
Li Qingshan was overjoyed as he poured all of his efforts into it without hesitation. The underground river was much larger than any rivers he had refined so far. He could probably only refine it after quite the effort.
However, once he refined it, he would establish a connection between the two territories, and his foundation in the Clear River prefecture would become even more consolidated.
In Qing Xiao’s Home, Li Qingshan stood up and nodded towards Xiao An before leaving the dwelling.
It was time for his main body to take action.
At the end of the day, his clone only possessed a portion of his daemon qi, and it did not possess the divine powers of the spirit turtle. When he concentrated on cultivating, using his clone to save time was a good idea, but he still had to tend to real issues in person. It was more convenient that way.
And, it was time for him to return underground and check on the situation. He had to take a look at how Ye Liusu was going with her great cause of unification.
The blackwater salamander remained in his deep, underground lake, swimming around freely. He cultivated slowly with the speed of a daemon. Perhaps in a decade or a century’s time, he would also become a powerful Daemon General, but right now, he was only a weak daemon.
Among the many underground daemons, the daemons in Li Qingshan’s territory were probably the most fortunate. They safely avoided the war that might have threatened their lives.
The blackwater salamander suddenly sensed an unstoppably powerful daemon qi merge with his region of water. The water it could freely control originally had frozen into a prison in that instant.
In the black water, two specks of azure light appeared. In a blur, a spirit turtle swam past. The specks of blue light were the spirit turtle’s eyes. It was clearly burdened with a large shell on its back, but its movements were filled with elegant and agile beauty, like it was dancing through the sky.
Compared to the directly-observable, tremendous daemon qi, another indescribable aura appeared. That was an aura of divinity, like a king on tour through his territory, like a god drawing up a divine kingdom.
Wherever it went, no matter how violent the water flow was, it would all settle down like its gaze.
However, when it swam closer, the figure of the spirit turtle dispersed, revealing Li Qingshan.
Li Qingshan’s main body arrived beneath Moon Court lake. When he first began refining the underground river, he found it to be surprisingly easy. The deeper the underground river went, the heavier the flow became, and the way he refined it was actively expanding the Water God Seal, yet it felt as easy as refining a small river with his clone.
The speed at which he refined waters with his clone was fast enough to leave everyone in the dust. If they could witness the efficiency of his original body, they would probably be left dumbfounded.
At this moment, in the commandery city of Ruyi, there was indeed a group of people who were left stunned.
A glowing map covered a large wall. There were no cities or settlements on there, only mountains, rivers, and other geographic features. The mountains that rose and fell and the rivers that twisted and turned seemed like a huge dragon squirming on the ground, with its head and tail touching. However, it did not seem messy at all. It possessed the beauty of nature.
The waters were blue, but a small region had been dyed a bright red. Looking at its shape, it matched Moon Court lake and the surrounding waters.
“My lord, this is the landscape from the Green Province cauldron. The speed at which the moon demon, no, Northmoon refines the landscape has suddenly increased,” an old man reported.
The Marquis of Ruyi wore the same fancy hat and was still dressed in violet, except his chilly expression as if he was forcing a smile had vanished. It had been replaced by caution or even vigilance.
The spread colour of red was like carbuncles on his body. That’s right, the Ruyi commandery was territory that had been passed down through his clan for thousands of years. It was like an extension of his body.
He did not mind if daemons ran amok. He did not care either no matter how many regular people and cultivators died. However, refining the landscape and claiming to be a god was directly provoking his authority.
The right hand hidden within the Marquis of Ruyi’s large sleeve clenched into a fist. He felt an urge to barge through the door right now, rush to the Clear River prefecture, and kill him.
Actually, he did not even have to do anything personally. With a single order, mobilising a handful of Golden Core cultivators would be nothing difficult at all. Just the Golden Core cultivators who served in his marquis’ estate amounted to three.
However, he could not do this. He was not a chess piece, but he only dared to remain as a spectator. Let alone tampering with the chess pieces in this game, even respecting the rule of remaining as a silent spectator was the basics of the basics.
“What do you think?” The Marquis of Ruyi looked around. To his side stood two people on equal footing.
One was a middle-aged man. He was dressed in military uniform as his face was as stiff as a block of metal, without the slightest expression. His hands remained by his side as he stood sternly, like a glacier that never melted.
If Li Qingshan were present, he would definitely find a great resemblance to Han Anjun. He was Han Qiongzhi’s uncle, the great general Han Anguo.
“If this daemon remains, he’ll definitely become a source of great trouble.”
The Marquis of Ruyi nodded slightly, agreeing to that. “To think that Liu Zhangqing has actually reported to me that he wants to give the Watermirror disc to him. What is he thinking?”
The other person was obviously Gu Yanying, still dressed in clothes whiter than snow as she stood with her arms behind her back. Her sleeves were rolled up, revealing her pale forearms that seemed clean and smooth. The graceful smile hung forever on her face, making it impossible to guess her thoughts. She was like the invisible yet ever-changing wind.
“Heh, now that’s interesting.”
“Yanying, aren’t you a little too unfazed?”
When the Marquis of Ruyi looked at her, even his gaze softened slightly, without the bone-deep arrogance of a marquis.
Of course, this was not only because of his feelings for her. Gu Yanying’s status was exactly the same as his. No one knew the exact depth of her cultivation, not to mention there was the shadow that enveloped the entire sky of the Great Xia empire behind her.
Compared to her, even the mighty Marquis of Ruyi was merely a measly, local noble.
“It’s just a game of chess. Why must we be so serious?”
“This is the ancestral property of my clan.” The Marquis of Ruyi smiled bitterly as he stared at her. The part about her that enchanted him the most was not her absolute beauty, her noble status, or even her bearing that was as ungraspable as the wind.
Instead, it was a boldness of vision. Wind might not move, but air was omnipresent, filling the nine provinces.
Everyone said the Clear River prefecture was a game of chess, but apart from the few at the very top, who could actually treat it as a game of chess?
“Why don’t we just give him the Watermirror disc and see how big of a wave he can create?” Gu Yanying’s behaviour truly matched a spectator’s, watching on without any problems with it developing out of hand.
“He is one of my admirers after all.” Gu Yanying’s lips curled. She made no mention about the overall situation, making no effort to hide likes and dislikes.
“Since you’re saying to give it to him, then we’ll give it to him! What can I do about how unfortunate I am to end up in such a predicament? I probably should sympathise with this Northmoon.”
The Marquis of Ruyi sighed, tossing the warning of “If this daemon remains, he’ll definitely become a source of great trouble.” to the back of his mind in the blink of an eye.
He did not want to come off as overly unsophisticated in front of her. Of course, this was not the primary reason. Recently, he had been under quite a lot of pressure too. Zhou Tong had indeed become very frantic to retrieve his Lightning Slaughter sword. He managed to find a figure that the Marquis of Ruyi could not turn down to speak for him.
Gu Yanying made no mention of the situation, but the Marquis of Ruyi had already analysed it countless times internally. He considered the benefits that came with Zhou Tong undergoing the heavenly tribulation. What Gu Yanying said was only a prelude to his decision at most. With how long he spent cultivating so far, how could he do something so stupid just for the sake of someone’s feelings?
Of course, it was possible to say the prelude was very important too. The Marquis of Ruyi felt caution or even vigilance towards Northmoon instinctively. It was far too unnatural for a daemon’s cultivation to climb so rapidly, so he should have done everything he could to either slow him down or stamp him out. If it were not for Gu Yanying’s words, he might have followed through with this idea.
And in the future, he would absolutely regret his decision today, which also proved that something like a boldness of vision could not be feigned. Some people really did not care about that.
As they spoke, Han Anguo maintained the usual style of the Han family, standing by silently without objecting at all.
Only when he was about to leave did Gu Yanying suddenly ask, “Has your niece succeeded with Foundation Establishment?”
“She just went through the heavenly tribulation two days ago. She’s currently recovering.” Han Anguo cast a questioning gaze at her, wondering why she had suddenly mentioned Han Qiongzhi.
“Have her report to me tomorrow!” Gu Yanying said straightforwardly.
Han Anguo was rather confused. He had no idea why she was treating Han Qiongzhi with such kindness and generosity, but being promoted directly to the White Wolf guard could never be bad. He did not want Han Qiongzhi to return to the Clear River prefecture right now either, at least until the situation had completely stabilised there. As a result, he nodded. “Alright.”
The Marquis of Ruyi smiled. “You’re talking about esteemed niece Qiongzhi, right? You should try and put another word in with her as her uncle. Just what does she want in exchange for the Heavenly Maiden Scatters the Blossoms painting? Does she really think I’ll rip her off?”
“That’ll be up to her.”
The great general’s estate.
“No, I have to return!” Han Qiongzhi said firmly.
“I’ve already agreed to it. The commands of your superiors are absolute. As a Hawkwolf Guard, Gu Yanying is your commanding officer. You should follow her orders. Alright, stop being so stubborn. You’re not a child anymore.”
For once, Han Anguo’s expression was gentle, which filled the young men and women present with envy. Since when had their father been so amiable with them? Not to mention, ever since Han Qiongzhi had come, their lives had become much better, so they all put in a word with Han Qiongzhi too.
“Yeah, sister Qiongzhi, just stay here. He even told you to wait for him!”
“What’s so good about that Li Qingshan anyway? It’s been so long and you’ve heard nothing from him. He hasn’t even written you a letter.”
Han Anguo said coldly, “He personally slew four Daemon Generals, all while fighting alone. He has even been promoted to the Scarlet Hawk commander of the Clear River prefecture now. Before you complain about others, why don’t you check yourselves first?”
They were immediately silenced, but they were still extremely unconvinced. That’s just because we never had the opportunity. Once this Li Qingshan comes, we’ll definitely see who’s stronger.
Han Qiongzhi was slightly surprised. She had spent her entire time in secluded cultivation so that she could break through to Foundation Establishment. She had only found out now that Li Qingshan had already become the Scarlet Hawk commander, but she was happy nonetheless considering her uncle was praising him.
“Qingshan, you better come soon!”