Translator: Zen Translations Editor: Zen Translations
In that instant, all that pent up anger that Shangguan Fei’er had towards Zhou Weiqing for stealing her first kiss had dissipated. She also forgot for a moment that she was part of the ZhongTian Battle Team, and should be thinking for them.
This was truly a man who was responsible and accountable; a man who was willing to stand up for his own ideals, no matter the cost. Perhaps, some might think of him doing such a thing at such a time as being foolish, to help the WanShou Battle Team against the ZhongTian and Bao Po Battle Teams. However, Shangguan Fei’er did not think the same. Her character was already a rather rebellious one, coupled with a rather mischievous and eccentric nature. Deep inside, she appreciated a man like Zhou Weiqing who was confident, daring, and so resolute in his actions. Furthermore, he was the one who had stolen her first kiss.
That time, Zhou Weiqing had planted a tiny seed in her heart, so much so that after leaving the Lustre Spatial Realm, she had actually pled on his behalf to her father and uncle. That was also one of the reasons why the Heaven’s Expanse Palace had been treated him so well after that incident.
After which, Zhou Weiqing had gotten the bad news from home and led the Fei Li Battle Team back. Shangguan Fei’er had originally been confined for a period of time as punishment, but she was after all rather favoured in the Heaven’s Expanse Palace, and that did not last long. After Zhou Weiqing and the rest had left, she had snuck out and followed them, learning from Tian’er as she ran away from home. With her cultivation level, it had been easy for her to follow them without being discovered.
When Zhou Weiqing had been ambushed in his own home, Shangguan Fei’er had been prepared to take action. However, she held back to see how Zhou Weiqing had grown, and had definitely been surprised.
She had seen Zhou Weiqing, at a mere four-Jeweled stage, able to take on eight Upper Level Zun Stage Masters and above. That decisiveness. The savage viciousness. His sheer power and intelligence.
Just by himself, he had finished off four out of his eight enemies, and in the end, with the Dragon Silencing Seal, had allowed his friends to finish off the other four easily.
Although Shangguan Fei’er was also confident in taking on these eight without problems, but even she would not be able to do so without injury. More so, in a eight versus one situation, she would not be able to guarantee that she would be able to finish them all off without some escaping.
Yet… the worst thing about the comparison was that… she was after all a genius level Heavenly Jewel Master from a Great Saint Lands! Although Shangguan Fei’er was rather playful normally, she was still extremely diligent in terms of training and cultivation. She was still slightly behind Shangguan Xue’er, but that was in part because of the sheer power of the Boundless Infinitum Set. In fact, Shangguan Fei’er’s Heavenly Energy cultivation level was already at the 26th level, not too far from the seven-Jeweled stage’s 28th level. Even so, she knew that when she was at the four-Jeweled stage, she would have not been a match for the current Zhou Weiqing.
What did that all mean? It meant the difference in sheer talent. Indeed, it was a difference in innate, inborn talent. Zhou Weiqing’s talent was just too terrifying, defying even the heavens. Although she did not know that it originated from the black pearl of the Dark Demon God Tiger, it was enough to pique her interest in Zhou Weiqing.
As such, Shangguan Fei’er decided to follow Zhou Weiqing to the outside world to have fun and enjoy herself. Earlier, she had noticed that she was not the only one following them, and she had taken out the spy. By then, she was unwilling to continue hiding any longer, and showed herself.
Shangguan Fei’er eyed Zhou Weiqing for a moment before saying self righteously: “I will definitely keep an eye on you and monitor your actions. If you dare do anything that lets down Bing’er, I will not let you off.”
Looking at Shangguan Fei’er, Zhou Weiqing felt a headache encroaching. He would rather interact with Shangguan Xue’er than this mischievous young lady in front of him. She was from the Heaven’s Expanse Palace, and if she continued following along, how could he keep any secrets? Especially so with what he was planning to do ahead. If it were Shangguan Xue’er, she would just be an icy exterior, but this young lady was different. From how she was willing to sneak into the Lustre Spatial Realm to deal with him, one could tell how problematic she would be.
Alas, he could do nothing about it, and Zhou Weiqing said helplessly: “In that case, let’s head off already.”
Once again, they moved out and continued on, and it was only then that Zhou Weiqing finally knew what torture was. Shangguan Fei’er had almost never left the Heavenly Jewel Island, and even when she had, it was to the ZhongTian City. This was her first time leaving home for such a distance. Previously, since she had been following Zhou Weiqing secretly, and did not have time to look around at her surroundings too much, but now that she could take her time, her curious eyes did not stop. Every time she saw something new and interesting, she asked Zhou Weiqing about it, chattering non stop.
Originally, Zhou Weiqing had been intending to fully polish his plan for their upcoming activities on the trip, but being pestered by her non stop, he was unable to do so. Alas, he was unable to offend her, and no one else seemed to want to help him out, instead sniggering secretly at the side.
This time, their trip took almost half a month, and by the time Zhou Weiqing finally started getting used to having a ever-questioning Shangguan Fei’er beside him, they were already deep in the ZhongTian Empire territory, heading to their northern border.
The twenty one of them continued along their way, pausing momentarily at a crossroads. Zhou Weiqing spread out a map of the area, while the others stood around him. The map had been purchased on their way here, one of the most detailed ones they could find, costing them more than ten gold coins in total, made of goat leathers and was extremely durable, while it was also detailed and accurate.
In terms of cultivation and power levels, the Heavenly Jewel Masters of the Fei Li Battle Team were undoubtedly miles ahead. But in terms of reading maps, strategizing and large scale combat, they paled in comparison to Zang Lang and the other graduates of the Fei Li Military Academy.
Zang Lang stood by Zhou Weiqing’s side, looking through the map together with him. Pointing at the crossroads ahead, he said: “Both the roads in front can lead to the ZhongTian northern border, the one of the left is much shorter distance, at least three to four days worth of less travel, but it passes through an area called the Ghost Demon Forest. If we take it, we should reach the north border within five days, if we do not run into any trouble. The road on the left is winding and complicated, but they are all official roads that will be much easier and safer to traverse.”
“According to the symbols on the map, the Ghost Demon Forest is full of Heavenly Beasts. To be safe, I recommend that we take the right path, though it might take a slightly longer time, but it is a smoother route. If we rush along, we might at most take 2 more days than if we took the left road.”
“Take the left, take the left!” Shangguan Fei’er jumped up excitedly. How could she be afraid of Heavenly Beasts, and with her mischievous nature of wanting to stir trouble, she would definitely chose the more ‘exciting’ route.
Lin TianAo furrowed his brow and said: “However, we do not know what kind of Heavenly Beasts live in that Ghost Demon Forest.” In truth, with the strength of their party, as long as they did not meet any Heavenly King Stage Heavenly Beasts or higher, they should not have any problems. If they truly wanted to move as fast as possible, then the left road would undoubtedly be more worthwhile. Although Zhou Weiqing did not say anything, Lin TianAo knew for sure that he was definitely hoping to reach their destination as soon as possible, to start his plan quickly. After all, they were on a limited time table, and ten years might sound like a long time, but facing the odds that they did, it was truly unbelievably short.
As such, all of them turned to focus on Zhou Weiqing. He would be the one to make the final decision, and all the rest waited for him.
If it were only him and the Fei Li Battle Team, Zhou Weiqing would have chosen to take the left road without hesitation, cutting straight through the Ghost Demon Forest. In doing so, not only would they save time, they could also possibly earn from any Heavenly Beasts they killed on the way.
However, things were different now, as they had Zang Lang and the other eleven members. Amongst the twelve of them, besides Zang Lang, a three-Jeweled Heavenly Jewel Master, the rest were all only Physical Jewel Masters, at most at the three to four Jeweled stage.
In terms of cultivation level, a three or four Jeweled Physical Jewel Master could not be compared to a Heavenly Jewel Master. Not only in terms of having Elemental Jewels, but even their cultivation levels – after all, a Heavenly Jewel Master needed four levels of Heavenly Energy to gain a Jewel, but ordinary Jewel Masters only needed three. That was to say, just in terms of cultivation level alone, none of them were even as high as Zhou Weiqing! If they met with any powerful Heavenly Beasts, especially those who were skilled in sneak attacks or ambushes, Zhou Weiqing could not guarantee that they could pass through without death or injuries.
The reason why Zhou Weiqing placed such importance on them was not because of their combat abilities, but because of their outstanding talent and training in military affairs. For those commoners to be able to enter the Fei Li Military Academy, besides those like Ma Qun who totally depended on the status of a Heavenly Jewel Master, each of them were extremely talented in their own way! The twelve of them was tantamount to having twelve commanders or advisors of his army, and they were all extremely precious to Zhou Weiqing, possibly of great use in the future. Zhou Weiqing would definitely not want them to perish in any useless way.
After thinking about it for a while, Zhou Weiqing finally suppressed his desire to go through the Ghost Demon Forest. Solemnly, he said: “Alright, we’ll do as Zang Lang suggested. We will take the right path, if we pick up the pace, we shouldn’t be delayed too much.”
“Oei, you aren’t such a coward are you.” Shangguan Fei’er said exasperatedly.
Zhou Weiqing eyed her for a moment, then said: “You might be extremely powerful personally, but not everyone is. All of us here are my brothers, and I have to be responsible for everyone’s lives. They have chosen to follow me, how could I let them endanger themselves unnecessarily for nothing?”
When he said that, those seniors of his from the Fei Li Military Academy all showed looks of gratitude on their faces. If he had chosen to go via the Ghost Demon Forest, none of them would have backed down, but they would definitely feel fear in their hearts. After all, in terms of actual combat, they did not have much experience and were not well versed in that.
Shangguan Fei’er pursed her lips disdainfully, saying: “What danger can there be? Don’t you know, our ZhongTian Empire does not have any really powerful Heavenly Beasts?”
“En?” Zhou Weiqing looked at her curiously. Shangguan Fei’er was the little princess of the Heaven’s Expanse Palace, and naturally she would know much more about the situation within the ZhongTian Empire than outsiders like the rest of them.
Shangguan Fei’er said: “Within the Boundless Mainland, most, if not all, of the powerful Heavenly Beasts are in the WanShou Empire lands. As for the other Empires, it is extremely difficult to find any Heavenly Beasts at the Heavenly King Stage or higher. Those powerful Heavenly Beasts you saw in the Heavenly Jewel Island are mostly captured by those ancestors of ours from within the WanShou Empire. Although I do not know why that is so, I am certain that within our ZhongTian Empire, the strongest Heavenly Beasts should only be at the Upper Level Zong Stage or so. With all of us, as long as we are careful, the Ghost Demon Forest should not be a problem to us! After all, as long as we do not meet any Heavenly King Stage beasts, we have no need to fear!”
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