This chapter has been brought to you by me, and larkspur.
Chapter 18: A War Caused by A Horse Watering Bucket
In the night, a silver ribbon-like stream flowed across the endless grassland. This stream was a natural boundary between the Qin Dynasty and the Wuzhi country. On one side was the Wuzhi kingdom of the plains, and the other the Qin border city.
A wooden bucket slowly floated down the stream. A large man with a long beard but a shaved head casually grabbed the floating wood bucket. The bucket was old but very clean so he casually scooped up some water with it for the grey-white horse behind him to drink.
Footsteps sounded in the grass.
The bearded man looked along the sound and his thick brow slowly rose in challenge.
A black heavier than night appeared in his sight.
This was a Qin border soldier much smaller than him, wearing black leather armor and carrying an ordinary iron sword.
“This is my watering bucket.”
The Qin border soldier went to the stream. Looking at the challenging gaze, his expression darkened and he nodded at the wooden bucket.
The bearded man looked disdainfully at the soldier half a head shorter than him and said, “The wooden bucket floated down from upstream. You say it is yours. If a princess floated down, will you also say it is yours?”
This Qin soldier coldly shook his head and said, “I will not accept a princess of your grasslands even if you give her to me. I just want my bucket.”
The bearded man heard this and anger surged. He flushed red and said angrily, “What did you say?”
The Qin soldier did not look at him, just the wooden bucket behind him. He repeated, “Return my watering bucket.”
The man laughed angrily and took a step back. He gripped the handle of the long blade at his saddle and he snarled. “You have the balls to cross the stream and take it?”
The Qin soldier had a strange look flash through his eyes. He slowly said, “You forced me.”
The bearded man smiled. He did not think the Qin soldier would dare to cross the stream. Yet in the next moment, his smile froze.
This Qin soldier in black armor started to cross the stream.
When this Qin soldier stepped onto firm ground, the bearded man’s long blade had left its sheath.
His long blade reflected the moonlight as he pointed it at the Qin soldier’s chest and said coldly, “Go back.”
The Qin soldier gripped his sword hilt. He did not look at the man, only the wooden bucket. “What if I do not?”
The man stilled and said harshly, “If you do not, I will kill you.”
The Qin soldier sneered in disbelief. He held the sword hilt, and took a step forward to get the watering bucket.
“You want to die!”
The bearded man shouted. He swung his blade forward. His original intention was to scare this Qin soldier and yet unexpectedly, the Qin soldier did not try to avoid his blow. With a pop, his blade passed through the Qin soldier’s chest.
The bearded man was stunned, his face turning pale under the moonlight.
He looked at the blood coming out of the mouth of the Qin soldier hanging from his blade. He did not believe it and was unable to speak.
“Is it worth it for a bucket?”
The Qin soldier was not looking at the bucket now, but at the sky above, murmuring as he nostalgically gazed at the clean moon.
A horrified scream broke through the night sky.
Looking at the Qin soldier falling down the blade, this usually brave Wuzhi soldier trembled all over.
He did not know what was happening.
The Qin Dynasty had large territories. Even an eagle would have to fly for a long time from the border with Wuzhi to Changling.
In the moonlight, a youth walked into an elegant compound and sat down in a pavilion by the lotus pond.
A pretty palace attendant walked behind him.
The youth did not turn around and said coolly, “Since the empress is looking for me, why does she not come see me?”
“Her Majesty will arrive soon.” The pretty palace attendant responded softly and stood at the side.
The youth’s eyebrows rose slightly. The moonlight and starlight seemed to suddenly brighten.
The youth turned around and saw the empress slowly walking over, her face extremely perfect.
The youth finally became solemn and bowed to the empress, saying, “An Baoshi greets Your Majesty.”
The empress’ face flashed with an indescribable porcelain light. She looked at An Baoshi and said slowly without any opening, “The Yuezhi have submitted, the Wuzhi remain. If we conquer the Donghu, then there will be no trouble in fighting the Qi and Yan later.”
An Baoshi stilled. In the span of a breath, he started to understand the terrifying meaning in the empress’ words. He frowned slightly and did not answer.
“Some people are usable, and some are unusable.” The empress looked at him and said, “I want to hear your opinion.”
An Baoshi thought and smiled. “One needs to do great things in life. What you are doing are the greatest things in the world.”
The empress was very satisfied with his words and smiled as well. But her smile shone with the icy porcelain light and no joy.
Green Vine Sword School.
A swordsman came to the courtyard gates. His sword was very wide and large. The other swordsmen of Changling all carried swords on their back, in their hands, or by their waists, but he walked on the sword.
He was Guo Dongshan.
The empress had him see Zhang Shiwu to the Great Floating Water Prison. But because of the problem of delivering orders, he went to stop the cultivators of the God Killing Army. He was a grandmaster who was not well-known but many important people knew of his strength.
This grandmaster visiting deep in the night naturally had profound meaning.
The principal of Green Vine Sword School, Di Qingmei, immediately appeared in front of Guo Dongshan.
Guo Dongshan appeared very humble. He first put away his sword and bowed to Di Qingmei. Then his face grew solemn and he slowly said, “Principal Di, the war between the Qin and Wuzhi will begin tonight.”
“What!” Di Qingmei changed his expression. He thought he heard incorrectly.
“All these words are just me speaking nonsense. Listen and forget. The world does not know when the Qin and Wuzhi war will begin, but in three days, the Qin Dynasty and the Wuzhi will fight. It is the Wuzhi who triggered the war tonight.”
Guo Dongshan looked silently at Di Qingmei and said, “This is a battle of the dynasty so the empress has orders for all the swordsmen and students, except those who teach daily courses, to go towards the Wuzhi border, including Principal Di yourself.”
Di Qingmei’s body shuddered and he looked in disbelief at Guo Dongshan.
“Do not worry, it is not just the Green Vine Sword School.”
Guo Dongshan took a deep breath and looked up at the bright moon. He slowly said, “It will be for all the Changling cultivation places … After today, Green Vine Sword School and White Goat Cave will both exist, but the future students will obey the Warden’s Office’s orders and work for the Qin military.”
The words made Di Qingmei even more shocked. Even though he did not dare to disobey the orders of the mistress of the palace usually, he could not help but say in a trembling voice, “Is she crazy?”
“Is she crazy?”
During this night, someone else said the same words. But this person had calm emotions.
This was a middle-aged man in plain robes. Behind him was an old Daoist temple.
There was old wormwood growing on the eaves of the temple. These wormwood were a unique golden color. They would not wither in the snowy weather and gave off jewel-like light.
This temple was the Treasure Light Temple.
Standing in front of the middle-aged man was an official from the Warden’s Office. This official should be of high rank. Because his presence was so strong he shrouded almost all of the Treasure Light Temple.
“Not just the Treasure Light Temple, it is the same for all cultivation places.”
“Treasure Light Temple was built by the imperial decree of the previous emperor and also built inside Changling. Mister Chen, you are a grandmaster and should know that you should follow the will of heaven.” Hearing the man’s response, the official said patiently and calmly.
The plain-clothed man shook his head and smiled, saying, “I have only heard that there are some things that can be done, and some that cannot.” Pausing, he looked at the official and said, “You are also a cultivator, you should know that many cultivators do not want fame and wealth, but their freedom.”
The high ranking official from the Warden’s Office narrowed his eyes. He was about to speak when the man interrupted him. “Do not think of using some great righteousness to suppress me. You need to know that most cultivation places are like the Zhao Sword Furnace. If we bow to the strong, then what is the difference between the external and internal enemies?”
The official from the Warden’s Office took a deep breath and said, “You are determined?”
The middle-aged man said nothing else.
A pure sword essence came out of his body. A plain lifebond sword silently appeared in front of him. The sound of a giant mountain moving began in the sky.
Yet at this time, he looked up and towards a turret.
A force came from the peak of the turret like the entire tower was falling towards him.
Translator Ramblings: Poor guy, he was so setup.