The battle at the Forward Pond Gate was an easy victory for the Boundless Sect. Fifty thousand Golden Sand soldiers had been massacred, and Lin Qingliu had laid his life down for his country.
When news of this spread, an uproar spread throughout the country.
Whether or not the Boundless Sect was going to take over Long Sang was no longer a question of if but when. However, just because the Boundless Sect could win this battle didn’t necessarily mean that they would be able to take over all of human territory.
After that battle, there were virtually no more groups of soldiers capable of standing in the Boundless Sect’s way.
Lin Mengze chose to gather all the remaining troops to himself and turtled up in Long Coiling City.
The Boundless Sect’s expansion proceeded without incident, and they quickly swept their way across most of Long Sang.
Three days later, the Boundless Sect finally showed up at Long Coiling City after swallowing up the rest of Long Sang.
At this point, only Long Coiling City remained under Lin Mengze’s control.
But as long as Long Coiling City was still there, Long Sang was still legally in the Lin Clan’s hands. The other territory was merely under “temporary seizure.”
Only by wiping out the Lin Clan would they have truly successfully taken control.
Today was the day that the Boundless Sect was going to finish this mission and establish themselves as a force to be reckoned with amongst the Seven Kingdoms.
Upon realizing that they would soon become the leaders of an entire country, the Boundless Sect’s disciples were ecstatic.
Off in the distance, the Boundless Sect’s eight floating frigates and the palace all appeared, surrounded by countless Cloud-Piercing Shuttles.
Most typical armies had very few Light Shaking Realm cultivators and above, so there was always a shortage of Cloud-Piercing Shuttles. This was why they always moved on foot, while the ones who could fly assumed overwatch positions and advanced at the speed of an old turtle. The Boundless Sect, on the other hand was primarily made up of cultivators who could fly, and those who could not were seated in the Cloud-Piercing Shuttles. As such, the Boundless Sect’s mobility was astounding.
As such, traditional armies had no way of comparing with the Boundless Sect. It was only natural that the Boundless Sect held an absolute advantage.
When the soldiers guarding Long Coiling City saw the sky filled with floating ships and cultivators, their stomachs churned.
How could the entire army fly? This was basically a heavenly army.
How were they to defend themselves against such an army?
The Boundless Sect’s disciples stopped not far from Long Coiling City. At this point, the city’s defensive barriers had already been activated, and soldiers lined the walls of the city.
Long Coiling City had existed for thousands of years, and it had endured a number of invasions in the past. The tempering of its past experiences made it so that its defenses were no weaker than the Flowing Gold Fort’s.
It had previously withstood the attacks of three hundred thousand Ravagers, a giant Beast Wave, and an eighty-thousand strong army of rebels and pirates. Every bloody trial only announced just how resilient and strong it was. Even though it had fallen before, that was usually the result of internal strife.
An external invasion had never successfully breached the walls of the city before.
However, the soldiers guarding the fort had no confidence when they saw the Boundless Sect arrayed in formation before them.
Even so, they needed to be confident.
Because they had other plans in place.
A few people flew out of the city towards the Boundless Sect.
The person at the very front was Li Wuyi.
For Liaoye’s emperor to suddenly appear in this place had obvious implications.
Not only so, but Su Chen was also quite familiar with the person next to Li Wuyi - Chu Jiangyu.
Su Chen didn’t recognize the others, but based on their auras and bloodlines, it was quite apparent that they were important political leaders from the other countries.
“So the other countries finally couldn’t sit back any longer, huh?” Su Chen chuckled.
Even though the Seven Kingdoms would fight amongst each other from time to time, they were still mostly allied, and each bore their fair share of glory and shame. Every time an important situation arose, they would band together to deal with it.
Lin Zuiliu’s rebellion had been quashed by the six countries, who had sent aid to Lin Mengze.
Now that the Boundless Sect was bearing down on Long Coiling City, the six other countries had also made their appearances.
The only reason they had taken so long to appear wasn’t part of their plan. The Boundless Sect was simply moving too quickly.
Bureaucrats always did things at a leisurely pace. Back then, it had taken nearly two months for the three countries to settle on a plan of attack against the Harpies. In comparison, the Boundless Sect had only taken half a month to sweep through all of Long Sang.
As such, while the six other countries were discussing amongst themselves what to do, they suddenly realized that the Boundless Sect was suddenly at Lin Mengze’s throat when they had merely been at his belt buckle the other day.
This was why they had hurriedly sent over an envoy to Long Sang. If they had been just a little slower, there wouldn’t have been any discussions to be had.
Su Chen was not surprised by the fact the six kingdoms had sent a joint diplomatic envoy here, but he was slightly surprised that Li Wuyi had chosen to come himself.
As he watched Li Wuyi draw close, he cupped his hands in greeting. “Su Chen greets Emperor Li.”
Li Wuyi chuckled. “Greetings, Sect Master Su. I never would have thought that the Boundless Sect would become so imposing in but the span of a few years. This is truly the good fortune of the human race.”
“What a pity that this strength is not being directed at the foreign races, but at our fellow humans. This is truly a tragedy,” one of the old men standing next to him said coldly.
Su Chen shot him a glance. “Who are you?”
The old man proudly replied, “Greatwind’s number one physician, You Tianxiang.”
“I think you should change your name to You Tianxia instead,” Su Chen impolitely replied [1. Su Chen is changing “xiang”, which means auspicious, to “xia”, which means blind.].
“What did you say?” The old man was incensed.
“I’m saying that you’re not only blind, but also an idiot! If Feng Zhuying sent you to try and convince me, is he trying to kill Lin Mengze instead of save him?” Su Chen thundered, his gaze cold.
Everyone knew exactly what the Boundless Sect’s grudge with Lin Mengze was.
During the past few years, Lin Mengze had been the one bullying the Boundless Sect. The Boundless Sect was merely retaliating. The old man, however, was openly criticizing Su Chen for essentially betraying his fellow humans instead of attacking the foreign races. His bias was extremely obvious.
But even if he was biased, his manner of speech was incredibly crude. Even Su Chen couldn’t wrap his head around why Feng Zhuying would send such an idiot to negotiate with him.
Li Wuyi chuckled. “He’s not the person Brother Feng had sent. That person encountered an accident along the way and wasn’t able to make it. It just so happened that this doctor was in Long Sang at the moment, so we sent word to him as a substitute. It appears now that this was a mistake. He is clearly crude and unrefined, and has offended Sect Master Su. I think it would be best for him to die here and now.”
You Tianxiang was alarmed. “Emperor Li......”
Actually, he wasn’t a total idiot. However, his strength had led him to be far too arrogant. He had originally imagined that Su Chen would have to give the joint envoy quite a bit of face, and that had given him the confidence to speak so arrogantly and carelessly. Su Chen felt that You Tianxiang was quite crude, but he didn’t know that You Tianxiang felt like he was being quite courteous already.
The price for being arrogant when he shouldn’t have been arrogant, however, was steep.
An instant later, Li Wuyi raised his palm and pushed it against You Tianxiang’s head.
There was no extreme burst of power or show of force. This simple-seeming palm, however, caused the old doctor’s eyes to roll into the back of his head, and he immediately fell out of the sky.
Su Chen said, “He is a person of Greatwind. It’s not exactly appropriate for Emperor Li to kill him, is it?”
Li Wuyi calmly said, “The human race does not make distinctions, and the Seven Kingdoms are all one family in the first place. Brother Feng will only thank me for culling one of his incompetent subordinates.”
There was clearly meaning concealed within his words, but he had done so in a much more elegant manner.
Su Chen smiled slightly. “If that’s the case...... Please, follow me.”
Within the Boundless Sect’s palace.
Li Wuyi and the others had been seated in the main hall. Some of the Boundless Sect’s disciples had already stepped forwards, bringing them tea. However, this tea was a very dark green color, giving it a sinister quality.
Su Chen said, “This is the Tea of Cycles. Please, enjoy.”
The name “Tea of Cycles” almost made it seem as if the tea was inviting them to pass onto the next cycle of life. When paired with the frankly eerie appearance of the tea, it was only natural that the guests all glanced at each other, momentarily unwilling to drink it.
Chu Jiangyu, who understood Su Chen quite well, knew that Su Chen wouldn’t resort to such base methods if he actually wanted to kill them. As such, he tilted his head back and drank it in one gulp.
As the tea entered his stomach, he immediately felt a gentle warmth suffuse throughout his body, causing him to let out a sigh of contentment.
Upon seeing that his expression was slightly strange, the other guests were even more afraid to try the tea.
Li Wuyi took a gentle sip. He frowned for a moment before his expression smoothed out. “What is this tea made from?”
Su Chen replied, “This tea is made from harvesting the leaves of a tree that I planted on the Ten Thousand Swords Mountain.”
Were these mere tree leaves?
Li Wuyi felt his heart tremble. “Leaves...... What kind of tree did they grow on?”
“Oh, the tree is nothing special,” Su Chen casually replied. “You might have known it as the Deep Sea Sorrow before.”
Everyone present felt their brains explode.
Someone asked, their voice trembling, “Deep Sea Sorrow? You mean, the instrument that is supposedly capable of elevating a lifeform and greatly increasing their cultivation base......”
Su Chen nodded.
Li Wuyi’s gaze constricted. “It wasn’t destroyed?”
“No,” Su Chen replied. “I brought it back with me to the Ten Thousand Swords Mountain and made some adjustments to it. Nowadays, it sits on that mountain, and is an incredibly valuable treasure of ours. I took some of its leaves with me this time and used it to make this tea......”
Upon hearing this, the rest of the guests hesitated no longer and each took a sip.
Even Li Wuyi couldn’t help but sigh, “Your style and boldness are as inspiring as always, Sect Master Su.”
Style referred to the fact that he was willing to use the tree’s leaves to entertain his guests, while boldness referred to the fact that Su Chen was willing to openly admit this secret.
Su Chen smiled. “There is no secret which cannot be told to men.”
“Is Sect Master Su not afraid that openly admitting the possession of an important treasure like the Deep Sea Sorrow will cause others to conspire against you to take it for themselves?” Chu Jiangyu wouldn’t resist asking.
Su Chen replied casually, “They can conspire all they like. I’ll deal with them one by one. In any case, haven’t these ‘others’ already come to me before I even said anything about the Deep Sea Sorrow? I imagine that I would have had to take you all on sooner or later if I didn’t agree to your conditions today, right?”
Upon hearing Su Chen’s words, Li Wuyi immediately understood.
He knew why Su Chen had treated them to this tea.
So you want to use the Seven Kingdoms’ alliance to threaten me?
If I don’t agree to back down here, you’ll band together to deal with me?
Fine, let me give you some additional incentive.
See? An invaluable treasure that can accelerate the growth of any lifeform is sitting right smack dab in the middle of the Boundless Sect.
Are you game?
If so, I’ll happily take you all on at once.
Su Chen was using this method to inform the others that he was not only unafraid of the Seven Kingdoms’ alliance, but that he welcomed it.
Just cause and all that.
If everyone is scheming against me, I will scheme against everyone.
Let’s see if you still dare!
In that moment, Li Wuyi understood.
There was nothing to negotiate. Su Chen was unwilling to take even a half step backwards!
Actually, Li Wuyi needed to think about how to quell the other countries’ greed so that they wouldn’t end up following in Lin Mengze’s footsteps.