Chapter 81: A Way to Survive
Outside of Clear River City, at the Ten Kilometers Pavilion.
A ceremonious farewell was happening.
Tang Ming, Zhou Juanjia, Ma Xuan, Wei Yang, Jiang Hanfeng, and Ling Yan stood on the side of the road, facing Su Chen, Cloud Leopard, Wu Xiao, Zhao Xin, and Gan Haoli, who were seeing them off. Wu Xiao and the others were one year younger still, so they could stay in Clear River City for another year.
“After I go back and graduate, I’ll request to be stationed here in Clear River City to help you deal with those Bloodline Nobility Clans,” Tang Ming said.
Su Chen shook his head. “There’s no need. Every person has their own road they need to walk; it’s not appropriate for me to ask you to waste so much time here just for a friend. This past year, you all helped me build up a fleet in a short period of time and took control of Lingyuan Marsh, alleviating a lot of the pressure on me. The Third River Army now has a solid foundation built beneath it. Even without you guys here, it will still serve its purpose for me. Mm, what I’m saying is that I don’t need you guys anymore, so I’m tearing down the bridge after crossing the river.”
Everyone knew that he was just saying this on purpose. No one would take him seriously.
Su Chen continued, “Anyways, don’t I have Wu Xiao, Zhao Xin, and Gan Haoli here with me? In a few more days, Han Linxia and Little Forty are going to come over. They’ve completed their previous assignments and can finally spare some time to earn contribution points over here.”
Tang Ming crossed his arms and said arrogantly, “Unfortunately, none of them can fight.”
“Hey, Tang Ming, can you not look down on us all the time?” Wu Xiao said with dissatisfaction.
To Tang Ming, people like Han Linxia, Ji Ruoyu, and Zhao Xin were all on the weaker side, but anyone who was able to enter the Goldwater Ruins was selected from thousands of candidates.
“Weak” was always a relative measurement.
In truth, even the weakest Ji Ruoyu was still a grade A master. He would even be able to leap a tier if he carefully chose his opponents.
After the Goldwater Ruins and training for another two years in the Hidden Dragon Institute, many of them had made leaps and bounds in their strength.
For instance, Wu Xiao, who had a Demonic King Bloodline, was already ranked 21st as a seventh-year student. He was even more powerful now, and his combat strength wasn’t much weaker than Tang Ming’s.
“I’m just telling the truth,” Tang Ming continued to say arrogantly.
In the end, it was Su Chen who smoothed things over. “Alright, alright, you guys, stop fighting. If you want to talk about experts, there’s one who’s going to be here soon, though they might not be of much help...... oh, there actually might be two.”
“Who?” everyone asked.
“Ji Hanyan,” Su Chen replied.
“Ji Hanyan?” Everyone was stunned.
“Didn’t she go to Bachuan to be a Vice Director?”
“That’s right. Why would she come all the way to Clear River?”
Cloud Leopard followed up, “Bachuan has a wanted criminal that is on the run near the Crow Region. Ji Hanyan personally led a group of people out here and has already arrived in the area; she’ll show up in Clear River City perhaps in a few more days.”
“Then why did you say there are two of them?” Tang Ming asked.
Zhou Juanjia kicked him. “Idiot, did you forget about the other person?”
Tang Ming was dazed for a moment before he remembered. “Jiang Xishui?”
Everyone began to chuckle.
Jiang Xishui had always had a crush on Ji Hanyan, but unfortunately for him, Ji Hanyan hadn’t displayed any favorable inclinations towards him all the way up to the date of their graduation. But for whatever reason, Jiang Xishui never gave up. This person’s background was mysterious, and he hadn’t participated in the expedition to the Goldwater Ruins even though his strength was quite impressive. After he graduated, he completely dropped off the radar.
In this past year, no one had heard that he was looking for Ji Hanyan. Them saying that he would also come wasn’t even so much as a result of educated reasoning as a blind guess and poking fun.
Only Su Chen knew that this wasn’t just poking fun.
That was because Jiang Xishui had already arrived in Crow Region.
Standing at the bow of the boat, Jiang Xishui fanned himself, allowing the river wind to rush past his face as he gazed at the scenery.
“Esteemed guest, the wind from the river is very strong. It’s better if you come inside the cabin of the boat to sit,” the old boatsman yelled from behind Jiang Xishui.
“There’s no danger. This place is quite good enough,” Jiang Xishui replied calmly.
“Prince Jiang is truly an uncommon individual. Old Boatsman, there’s no need to yell at him any longer,” a black-faced man said to the old man driving the boat as he walked out from the boat’s cabin.
The old boatsman stopped talking.
Jiang Xishui didn’t even turn around. All he did was say, “How am I an uncommon individual?”
The black-faced man laughed loudly, “Prince Jiang, you don’t need to hide it from me anymore. I can tell just from your demeanor that you are an Origin Qi Scholar. What can this river wind mean to you? Even those pirates on Lingyuan Marsh might not be able to deal with you, Prince.”
Jian Xishui smiled. “It seems you’re quite good too.”
“Me?” The black-faced man was stunned, then laughed, “Forget about me. I won’t hide it from you - I have trained my fists and feet for a few years, but I’m just a common Body Tempering cultivator. At this point, I can’t even pass the Qi Drawing Realm, and I’m far from becoming an Origin Qi Scholar yet. I can’t compare with you at all.”
“You know what cultivation realm I’m in?”
“I don’t know how to inspect a person’s Qi. How could I see clearly your strength as someone weaker than you?”
“Then how can you determine that the Lingyuan Pirates won’t be able to deal with me?” Jiang Xishui countered.
“This......” The black-faced man froze for a moment, then laughed with some embarrassment, “Perhaps it was a slip in the tongue. I hope that Prince won’t take it too seriously.”
Jiang Xishui said indifferently, “It might not have been a slip of the tongue, but rather a probe.”
The black-faced man’s expression grew somewhat ugly. “Prince, what do you mean by saying that?”
Jiang Xishui looked up at the sky. “This is a world where there is always someone greater than someone else and a heaven outside a heaven, a world where if a person is strong enough, they can single-handedly dominate the entire world. In this kind of a bloody world, what’s most important to eke out a living is not how strong you are or how much influence you have, but how perceptive you are. Never provoke someone you shouldn’t provoke - that is the way of survival for a pirate. Because of this, many pirates who have some smarts will often send a few of their own people to infiltrate their targets before making a move. Firstly, they can send information secretly, preventing their targets from escaping or defending themselves; secondly, they can investigate their target more thoroughly, preventing anything from being overlooked; third, they can act as planted agents, working together with the outside forces; fourth, they can determine the strength of their targets and not provoke any strong opponents.”
The black-faced man backed up a few steps, and even his voice had gotten lower. “Prince, are you saying that I’m an informant for those pirates? What’s your intention in slandering me like this?”
“Let’s not worry about whether or not I’m slandering you right now. The boat behind us has been following us for a long time now. It should be waiting on your signal, right?”
The black-faced man’s expression changed drastically.
Jiang Xishui said, “Why not make a gamble with me? I’m going to go and kill them right now. You can notify them to leave or to prepare for a battle; it’s completely up to you. After it ends, we will see who is the one standing in front of you again. At that point in time, you can tell me whether or not I’m slandering you. Okay?”
As Jiang Xishui spoke, he turned around and walked towards the back of the boat. Once he got there, he continued walking and was now standing on top of the water.
The old boatsman steering the boat wanted to say something, but Jiang Xishui, standing stably atop the surface of the water, said, “Please, wait for me here for just a moment. I’ll be back soon.”
He continued to walk forward.
The roaring current became soft and docile beneath his feet. Even though he wasn’t walking quickly, his figure quickly became blurry as he disappeared off into the distance.
The black-faced man charged forward and yelled, “Quick, take the boat and get out of here!”
The old boatsman turned around and glanced at the black-faced man. “Old Hong, you’ve been on these waterways for so long and should already have some perceptive abilities. Can you not tell? If you were able to escape so easily from that prince, that would be a big loss of face for him. Little people have little peoples’ ways of survival. If you wait here obediently, you still have some hope of staying alive......”
The black-faced man was stunned.
He pulled out an item from his pockets.
It was a jade transmission pendant.
He trembled as he activated it. Before he could even say anything, he heard shrill cries coming out from the jade pendant.
“Let’s attack together!”
The shocked cries completely shocked Black Face’s heart.
After some more time, all of the yelling had ceased.
Jiang Xishui’s figure reappeared off in the distance.
He was still wearing the same light-colored garment and was still fanning himself elegantly.
He got back on the boat. When he saw the black-faced man was still there, he nodded and said, “Since you didn’t run, I’ll spare you your life.”
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