Translator: Zen Translations Editor: Zen Translations
Although none of the tribes would actually dare attack them, it was no easy task just surviving in their WanShou Empire and its harsh conditions. Since those powerful tribes were not able to swallow them, they would also naturally not give them any support. To Yi Erhan, maintaining the livelihoods of so many tribesmen was not an easy task. If they could exchange their services to Zhou Weiqing for food and pay, it would definitely be worth hiring out the five hundred Snow Deer Cavalry Warriors.
Finally, Zhou Weiqing and his group finished their meal and set off on their journey back comfortably. Before leaving, he received a Snow Deer Tribe plaque from Yi Erhan. In the future, when he needed the Snow Deer Cavalry Warriors, he could make use of this plaque to deploy the forces. At the same time, Yi Erhan also told him the other locations where the Snow Deer Tribe would camp in the other parts of the years. Of course, at this point in time, Zhou Weiqing did not know how lucky he was, or what these Snow Deer Cavalry Warriors actually signified. In fact, none of their party knew that amongst the cavalry soldiers of the WanShou Empire, in terms of individual and group fighting capabilities, the Snow Deer Cavalry Warriors actually ranked fourth, behind only the Lionmen Tribe, Tigermen Tribe and Panthermen Tribe, the three largest tribes, also belonging to the Royal Guard. It was truly a miracle that such a small tribe like the Snow Deer Tribe could stay autonomous despite having such a powerful resource.
A return trip often felt much faster than when leaving, and before long they were about to reach the Peerless Battalion camp.
Zhan LingTian was still astride his Ghost Demon Horse, and he said to Zhou Weiqing: "I will not be returning with you all, I need to head back to the Heaven's Expanse Palace to report all that has happened thus far. Fei'er, you return together with me."
Shangguan Fei'er bit her lip softly, lowering her head as she said: "Big bro Zhan, you know how difficult it is for me to actually run out to have fun, going back so quickly would be so boring. Let me stay a while more… Anyway, I have nothing else to do when I get back, cultivating anywhere is still the same right?"
Zhan LingTian was no fool, and from the past events he could tell there was something on between Shangguan Fei'er and Zhou Weiqing, even if he wasn't sure what it was exactly. Looking meaningfully at her, he said: "Fei'er, do not forget about Weiqing and Young Miss Bing'er. Well, it is up to you, I do not have the authority to command you, but I trust that no matter what, you should have the restraint and propriety. However, I will not hide your presence here from the two Palace Masters, and whatever they decide I will not be able to help you."
Upon hearing that Zhan LingTian would not forcefully bring her back, Shangguan Fei'er was overjoyed. She ignored the rest of his words, so what if her father and uncle knew where she was? They wouldn't personally come down to get her, nor where they stuck in this borderlands forever. As the saying goes, the skies are high and wide, and the emperor is far away, worse come to worse they could just run away.
"Big Bro Zhan, you're the best! Hehehe, good luck in chasing big sis!" She said happily.
Zhan LingTian flushed slightly, then he nodded towards Zhou Weiqing and said: "In that case, I leave Fei'er to you, please take care of her. This trip north past the border has been a good experience, and I have learned much in it. Your archery and skills are not bad indeed. In the future, when your cultivation level is higher, let's have a good fight."
Zhou Weiqing laughed heartily and said: "No no, I'm no match for that Light-Dark Divine Spear of yours. Bro Zhan, safe travels."
A rare faint smile crossed Zhan LingTian's lips, and with a nudge to his Ghost Demon Horse's flank, he sped off into the distance. He did not return this horse to Zhou Weiqing, its imposing build and power had given him a huge liking for it.
In truth, the reason why Zhan LingTian did not forcefully drag Shangguan Fei'er along had a slightly selfish reason behind as well. In his heart, Zhou Weiqing already had Shangguan Bing'er, and now he had some unclear relations with Shangguan Fei'er as well; naturally he could no longer have anything with his beloved Xue'er. Furthermore, if Zhou Weiqing was entangled with the two Young Misses, how would the two Palace Masters look at him?
As a result, he would rather return by himself and get a scolding than do the 'proper' thing and bring Shangguan Fei'er back. No matter what, all humans would have some form of selfish, or self serving motivations, especially when it came to matters of the heart, Zhan LingTian was willing to do this. After all, chasing Shangguan Xue'er was not an easy task! As the saying goes, all's fair in love and war!
As they watched Zhan LingTian leave, Crow and Ma Qun also rode up closer to Zhou Weiqing, and Crow said: "Weiqing, hold up a bit before leaving, we have something to speak to you about first."
"En?" Zhou Weiqing looked at them with askance.
Lin TianAo stood at the other side of Zhou Weiqing, a faint knowing smile on his face. It was clear he either knew what was going on or had already expected what would happen.
Crow said: "Weiqing, Ma Qun and I will be leaving for a while, so we will part here instead of returning to the Peerless Battalion."
A look of surprise crossed Zhou Weiqing's face. "You two aren't heading back too? Why not?" He was certain he had not done anything to slight or offend his two friends and companions.
Crow glanced towards Ma Qun at her side, and she gave a rare blush before saying: "This silly devil has finally come to his senses, so we have to return to our tribes to settle things. Otherwise, the relationship between our tribes have become strained, and we do not want things to grow worse. After all, our two tribes have always been extremely close, and we do not want to be the cause of a rift."
Upon hearing that, Zhou Weiqing relaxed. "So that's what it is. Alright then, but when you all go back, you better not get married there! After all, we all have to be guests at your marriage! Best thing is have the marriage ceremony at our Peerless Battalion, and we can all get together and enjoy!"
Crow flushed a deeper red, but Ma Qun stuck his chest out proudly and said: "Of course, our marriage will definitely be at the Peerless Battalion, how can there be any question of that! Boss, we are all family, so I will not beat around the bush. Crow and I want to bring our tribes to join up with you."
"Join up with me?" Zhou Weiqing started for a moment. Even he could not comprehend that in such a short moment.
Ma Qun nodded and said: "Originally, we already had such a plan. However, at that time you did not yet have a set place of residence. No matter what, all we care about is you and your talents. Now that you have the Peerless Battalion, that will be a good place for all of us to settle down steadily. You treat those ruffians so well, let alone us family. Crow's tribe is the Gold Crow Tribe, and I am of the Titan Tribe… both our tribes have always been good friends, but we are constantly facing the threat of survival. In the Fei Li Empire, they have always been trying to draft us into the army. However, our numbers have always been low… our state is similar to that of the Snow Deer Tribe, if we enter the army, we would soon be close to having our tribes destroyed."
Zhou Weiqing said dubiously: "Wouldn't joining up with me be the exact same thing? You know my current situation with my Empire and my goals in reviving the Heavenly Bow Empire, it will not be possible to avoid any fights! We are brothers, and I think it is best I state this out clearly beforehand. If you need me to provide any help, that is no problem, but to support to entire tribes for nothing, that might not be possible with my current status and capabilities. Therefore, if you are bringing your entire tribe to join up with me, it is still necessary to actually join the Peerless Battalion."
Ma Qun laughed heartily and said: "Boss, you sure are honest, aren't you afraid we renege on that? Our Titan Tribe and Crow's Gold Crow Tribe are all immensely powerful warriors."
Zhou Weiqing shook his head and said: "It is because we are brothers, I believe it is best to make things clear from the start. If you bring your entire tribe here and regret it in the future, then things would have already advanced to such a point that it is too late."
Ma Qun gave him a thumbs up before saying: "Well, we have indeed not misjudged you. Do not worry, since we have decided to bring our tribesmen to join up with you, we will not avoid fighting. After all, both our tribesmen are all natural powerful warriors. However, how could you be compared to the Fei Li Empire? They want to make use of us, not truly caring for us, using us on the frontlines against the toughest enemies to pit our lives against the WanShou Empire. I know that you will not do that, even those Peerless Battalion ruffians you are training them as archers, teaching them everyday about the importance of their own lives. Clearly, following you is definitely not a disadvantage to us all, and we will have no worry about food and pay. We have already thought this through… for the sake of the future of our tribes, we are betting all our lives on you. Originally, we wanted to speak to you about this before we set off, but that Zhan LingTian was around us all the time, so we kept on delaying it. Now that we have all returned from the WanShou Empire, both Crow and I have decided to go home and explain things out, to persuade our tribes to join up with you. How does that sound?"
Naturally, how could Zhou Weiqing say no to such a good deal? Zhou Weiqing did not attempt to hide his excitement, beaming happily as he said: "Good, very good, that is indeed great! Do not worry, your tribe is also my tribe, my family, hahaha!" He could not be blamed for being so excited. After all, besides the Titan Tribe which Zhou Weiqing had not personally experienced, he was all too familiar with Crow's strength and power. Her cultivation level aside, just the six hundred jin weight, steel skin and bones, and that terrifying strength, all of that were incomparable indeed.
If the Titan Tribe and Gold Crow Tribesmen all had statures like Ma Qun and Crow, they would undoubtedly be the finest heavy infantry units. Of course, Zhou Weiqing would not allow them to waste their lives easily on the battlefield. In that instant, his mind had raced through all the various possibilities, and if he managed to gain the support of these two powerful tribes and they were as he imagined, he would definitely arm them to the teeth, to make each and every one of their warriors a moving fortress of death.
Crow smiled and said: "Alright, Ma Qun and I will take our leave now. I'm afraid that this time, we will be gone for quite a while; after all, it is a full migration of both our tribes. I estimate that it will take us at least half a year, maybe up to a year. We will return to the Peerless Battalion to look for you, so Weiqing, try not to leave there within the next year or so alright."
Zhou Weiqing said: "Wait a moment. Big bro, did you bring any money with you?" Zhou Weiqing turned to look at Lin TianAo.
Lin TianAo shook his head and said: "I only brought a small sum. After all, we were heading to the Ten Thousand Beast Heavens, and I didn't see a need for much money. I passed most of it to Yun Li."
Zhou Weiqing thought for a moment before he reached into his bosom. No one else knew what he was doing, but when he brought his hand back out, he held a hand full of Heavenly Cores.
"Take these with you and look for a safe place to slowly sell them for money to bring back to your tribes. You will need the funds to buy sufficient carts and powerful horses, if possible Ghost Demon Horses or the like. After all, both your tribes people are large and with substantial weight. In this way, it will be easier to move everyone as well, and we can gather back as quickly as possible. These Heavenly Cores are a gift from me to your tribes."
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