Volume 5 – A Distance Within Reach, Chapter 51: Drastic Measures (Part 1)
Qianye had marked out the new intelligence he had gained on the large war-map. At the same time, he had drawn out a route for dispatching troops.
Qianye gave everyone a simple explanation of his gains during this trip. “This is the newest information I have obtained and the attack route I have planned. The good news is that the ruler of the territory, the arachne count Stuka, is exceptionally brutal and has already milked his subjects dry.”
“As such, my prediction is that there won’t be a lot of resistance in other areas as long as we can defeat the count’s direct forces. The bad news is that our chances to engage this count in battle are very high.”
Wei Potian quickly became excited. He leapt up shouted, “An arachne count! That will be G.o.dd.a.m.n satisfying. I must go this time! This daddy’s arts have improved again recently, and now I want to know if an arachne count can break through my Thousand Mountains!”
“He can definitely break it, and he won’t even need a second hit! Now sit!” Zhao Yuying was merciless in making Wei Potian see reality. Afterward, she reached out and pressed down on Wei Potian’s shoulder, causing him to fall back into his chair.
She sneered, “A brat who hasn’t even grown proper hair wants to imitate how adults fight? Just behave and stay in the city!”
Wei Potian glared angrily. He then turned around and pointed at Song Zining. “Then how about this gigolo?”
“Zining will go with us,” Qianye replied.
“Us?” Wei Potian was suspicious.
“Me and Yuying.”
Wei Potian began to stomp and roar. “Why does that sissy Song Zining get to go, but I can’t? How am I inferior to him?”
Without waiting for Qianye to reply, Song Zining stood up while flapping his fan and said, “That’s because this insignificant self is more handsome than you are!”
Wei Potian immediately erupted with anger. “Sissy, you’re courting death!”
Song Zining fanned rapidly while laughing. “I am indeed courting death, what can you do? We must see how capable the Wei clan heir is.”
Wei Potian wanted to retort but a gigantic force pressed him back into his seat.
After slapping Wei Potian back into his chair, Zhao Yuying scanned the two with cold eyes and roared, “Shut the h.e.l.l up!”
Wei Potian and Song Zining immediately sat down, no longer making a din. Qianye was immediately stunned and almost couldn’t believe his eyes. He still had no idea that even Zhao Yuying had been annoyed to no end by the two bickering men. As such, she had set up a rule for the two of them, and she would immediately beat them up if they didn’t follow it.
With Zhao Yuying’s strength as a rank-twelve champion and her fierce brute force, she could even smash apart Wei Potian’s Thousand Mountains with a few hits. As for Song Zining, never again did he dare to use his Three Thousand Flying Leaf Art in front of her—domain takeover was no funny matter.
It turned out that these two young men had the fear of G.o.d put into them.
Everyone else understood why Wei Potian couldn’t be brought along for this battle. The horde of young misses from the upper continent would definitely follow suit once the Wei clan heir went to battle. A place like Blackflow City with nothing to see or do was incredibly boring, and that battle with Dong Qifeng was probably the only thing entertaining during these days. These n.o.ble ladies definitely wouldn’t miss the opportunity to take part in a real battle.
But the moment they moved, Zhang Zixing’s third army corps would have to follow. Once the dark races caught wind of an imperial fleet appearing in Evernight, they would also maneuver their own fleet to face the enemy. At that point, it would no longer be limited to a local battle, but escalate to an all-out war.
Originally, Qianye only wanted to seize a piece of territory to lay down his foundations. In a barren place like Evernight, any viscount could rule over a vast territory, and the major characters of the two factions wouldn’t even be interested in listening to the report.
But if an entire squadron of imperial airs.h.i.+ps were to appear, it would not only cause a marquis to appear, but might even catch the attention of a duke. And such a matter was neither Qianye’s goal, nor was it the empire’s intention.
Wei Potian actually understood this matter quite clearly, but he simply couldn’t swallow his anger after seeing Song Zining’s arrogant att.i.tude. In his wrath, he couldn’t help but point at Song Zining and shout, “I challenge you to a one-on-one fight in the back alley. Come alone. Whoever doesn’t come isn’t a man.”
Song Zining’s eyes lit up as he said with a faint smile, “That’s fine too. Apparently, your skin is itching because it’s been a long time since I’ve beaten you up.”
Wei Potian sneered, “This daddy here has gone through life and death in battle. Do you think I can’t beat a useless person like you who surrounds himself with women every day?”
Qianye couldn’t help but feel an imminent headache after seeing the two of them once again making appointments for a fight.
It was still Zhao Yuying who had a good method of dealing with them. She lifted her Mountain Splitter, smashed it down in front of Wei Potian, and said, “This is for you!”
She then pounded the table in front of Song Zining with her fist and said, “And this is for you!”
There was a fiendish expression on the Zhao young miss’ countenance. Her gaze swept over the faces of the two as she said with a nasty laugh, “You two ignorant brats have already learnt to slash people? Fine! You have guts! Tonight, this sister will take the both of you in the back alley!”
The face of Wei Potian and Song Zining froze in place. It was unknown whether they were intimidated by this sister’s words or actions.
At this moment, Qianye let out a faint cough. Zhao Yuying turned back to point at him and shouted, “You, shut up! I’ll also beat you up otherwise!”
Qianye laughed innocently and said, “I only wanted to say that you’ll lose if they fight you together.”
A rather brilliant expression appeared on Zhao Yuying’s face.
She quickly turned back to glare at Qianye. “Why are you always b.u.t.ting in?! Fine! Let’s fight one-on-one. Let this mommy here teach you how to behave!”
Qianye widened his eyes and asked with a smile, “Close quarters, no weapons?”
Zhao Yuying’s expression turned dark. Unlike Wei Potian, Qianye was an expert in melee combat, backed by a terrifying const.i.tution and strength. The wrestle in Qianye’s room back then had made it clear to her that a complete victory over him wasn’t possible. How would she have any honor left if a beautiful lady like her had to clamber up with bruises all over her face?
But the young miss of Duke You possessed an unyielding temperament. Her brows rose tall, and her expression turned frosty.
It was at this time that Song Zining said in an unhurried manner, “Qianye, how can you bear to attack such a stunning beauty like Yuying? And you even want to engage in close-quarter combat? That’s really too distasteful. It’s fine if you guys want to fight, but there should be rules. First, no attacking the face, second, no a.s.saulting the chest, and lastly, no touching the b.u.t.tocks. You two can fight as long as you follow these three rules. Otherwise, I’ll have to join the fight and protect Miss Yuying. How can I let you mistreat such a beautiful lady?”
Qianye was immediately stunned. How was he supposed to fight a melee with so many limitations?
Zhao Yuying was also furious. She banged the table with strength and shouted, “How can one even fight like that?! Who told you to meddle? Stop treating your mother here like a lady!”
The entire room fell into an awkward silence after this shout had pa.s.sed. It seemed as though no one here had any intention to treat her as a lady.
Order was restored only after great effort—Qianye finished explaining his overall plans, summarized everyone’s suggestions, and made the necessary amendments. He then summoned the high-ranking Dark Flame officers and a.s.signed them their missions.
After leaving the conference room, Wei Potian naturally returned to his encirclement of young misses.
But after being in a deadlock up until now, these n.o.ble ladies were no longer as aggressive as they were before. Moreover, everyone understood that a large group wasn’t beneficial for fostering affection. As such, the number of people surrounding Wei Potian was drastically reduced, and they began taking turns to accompany him. The Wei clan heir was finally able to relax a bit.
That afternoon, Wei Potian occupied Dark Flame’s open-air combat arena in the company of a couple of n.o.ble ladies. It just happened to be a good time to have an intimate chat.
Wei Potian was already drenched in sweat after finis.h.i.+ng a round of practice. His bare upper body was chiseled and muscular, granting him a rather fierce look.
“Potian, what’s wrong? You seem to be in a bad mood,” asked a beautiful and gentle lady.
“Nothing. It’s just that I’m vexed by that gigolo!” With that, Wei Potian proceeded to spew out a series of profanities before his anger subsided.
He glanced at the refined young lady and asked after recalling something, “What do you think of my brother Qianye?”
“Very handsome!” The lady replied without thinking and then added with a red face, “Of course, he’s also very powerful.”
“That’s my brother, of course, he’s powerful!” Wei Potian was greatly pleased with himself and seemed even more delighted than receiving praise himself.
Nangong Ling had been in touch with Wei Potian for quite some time and had already discerned what he was thinking. “Young n.o.ble Qianye is good in every aspect, but his background is a bit too low. I think it can’t even be considered a humble family, right?”
Wei Potian replied back in anger, “Men depend on ability and fists! What effing use does background have?”
“Yes, yes.” Nangong Ling smiled and no longer continued speaking. She believed Wei Potian would understand her meaning.
The latter drank some water and said, “Qianye is my life and death brother, and he hasn’t settled down yet either. Which family has a suitable girl for him? Introduce them over! You’ve all seen him. This brother of mine already owns a division. Won’t it be a piece of cake to take down a couple of provinces in the future?”
The three n.o.ble ladies all felt a rush of excitement. Wei Potian’s words were always exaggerated, and three provinces were indeed too excessive. But, as they saw it, it wouldn’t be too hard for Qianye to seize a couple of counties. Such a territorial structure was already comparable to the peak of landowning families.
His familial background naturally couldn’t match theirs, but it wasn’t a problem at all for him to marry the daughter of an honorary count who couldn’t inherit any t.i.tle. Furthermore, the daughters of various levels of hereditary viscounts were an appropriate match for him.
These n.o.ble ladies all possessed good judgment. Among them, Nangong Ling was especially mature and knew full well the potential value someone like Qianye held. Simply put, a valiant general like Qianye with a powerful army in his hands was much more useful than ten n.o.ble descendants in times of conflict, or even war with other n.o.ble clans.
The gentle lady immediately replied, “I understand. I’ll discuss this with grandpa when I return and ask him to pick out some sisters from our clan.
An idea flashed through Nangong Ling’s mind. This lady was the granddaughter of Duke Fu, and she had actually brought out her grandfather in order to cater to Wei Potian’s wishes—this was quite the investment. Nangong Ling didn’t show her weakness and said on the spot, “I have a cousin with superb appearance and temperament. She’s the youngest daughter of Count of Huihe and has always been doted upon in our family since childhood.”
The Count of Huihe came from the Westsong Qiu Clan, one of the top clans among the middle-rank, and the count himself was the clan lord’s brother. Although his own n.o.ble t.i.tle was that of a regional count, the t.i.tle was hereditary for five generations, and it could be considered a social climb for the current Qianye.
Wei Potian immediately glanced at Nangong Ling and gave her an approving nod after these words were spoken. The two other n.o.ble ladies saw the situation and immediately lowered their heads, thinking hard about suitable candidates among their family and friends.
Wei Potian was also thinking of a number of suitable candidates from among the Wei clan’s branch family. Adding these ladies into the mix, there would be a fair number of beautiful ladies to choose from—Qianye should pick at least one of them, right?
At this point, Wei Potian withdrew the smile on his face and said with due seriousness, “Now I have some proper matters to discuss with you all.”
The three of them saw Wei Potian’s serious demeanor and couldn’t help but become nervous.