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Chapter Twenty-Five: Secret of the Lonely Mountain
A heavy rain suddenly descended. It was unable to completely dissipate the heat of the Nanquan Commanderies, but for the people who lived there, the air was cooler and refreshing.
The Ba Mountain Sword Field and Wang Jingmeng had been erased from Changling and all of the Qin Dynasty, but in the Yan, Chu, and Qi, the stories had spread wide. Especially when many cultivators who had been looked at like gods died in that battle of Changling, dying at Wang Jingmeng’s sword. So in the folklore, he was a character in the myths.
Now, this demon god of the myths came first to the Zhou Family and then to the Xia family to rest. The people of the Nanquan Commanderies could not imagine how he had managed to be reborn using the Nine Death Silkworm. What was most closely related to them was when the Xia Family had no more objections, then the Chu army retreating from Yangshan Commandery would quickly come, and then the ravenous Qin army would follow.
The Chu dynasty had been strong for many years. The people in this area had not experienced battle for years. No one knew the tired Qin army would stop here. However, it was necessary to prepare for war.
The night that Ding Ning and the others moved into the Xia Family, the people in charge of the Nanquan Families once again met under Gongsun Ji’s summons, having a secret meeting and then the families started to move and set up.
Back when the situation had been unclear, the Nanquan Commanderies had been like a city which could take in all the spies and cultivators from all factions. But starting now, the families started to clean house, driving these people out or capturing and killing them.
The Nanquan Commanderies had operated in this area for a long time, and this area was not like the border fortresses or important cities. The composition of people here was simple. So from a certain point of view, the Nanquan Commanderies were not very different from a sect.
In a certain river alley, two unfamiliar figures suddenly appeared. Many wary shouts sounded, followed by the energy vibrations of some seal weapons that started to be activated.
“Take me to see Ding Ning. Do you not see who I am?” One of the people spoke.
The voice was of a woman, but the tone was rebellious, causing resonance with the raindrops. Each drop seemed to be a person agreeing, causing this voice to form a wild tide that filled the world.
All of the cultivators here immediately discerned her identity.
Bai Shanshui had arrived.
“I have never thought of it,” when Bai Shanshui appeared in front of Ding Ning in the Xia Family compound, she said first.
Ding Ning looked at her. “My identity, or the Nether Floats?”
Bai Shanshui laughed at herself. “It is the same.”
Ding Ning looked calmly at her and Li Yunrui, not responding, and waiting for her to speak.
“You have many people around you right now.” Bai Shanshui glanced at Tantai Guanjian beside Ding Ning and said directly, “If we call the people of the Zhao Sword Furnace, and also your people of the Ba Mountain Sword Field, do you feel we will succeed if we charge into the Changling imperial palace?”
Tantai Guanjian was stunned. Ding Ning could not help but laugh.
Bai Shanshui spoke casually, like a child playing house, but only a person with such spirit as her could casually say such things.
“I know that you fear trouble, and it naturally will be good if it ends like that. But it is not so simple.” Ding Ning put away his smile, shook his head and said, “They are wounded very seriously, and only a few can fight. More importantly, if we use such a brute method, even if we win, I do not know how many people will be killed. Of course, there is another possibility that even if we go slowly, people will die in the end.”
Ding Ning’s expression grew stricter. He said seriously, “But I understand Yuanwu and Zheng Xiu more than you. When they are certain their lives are under threat, they will easily give up on some things. They will definitely leave behind a retreat path. So to kill them, I always thought there were two ways. One is to take all they have. The other is a time when they are unable to escape and have to face us.”
Bai Shanshui nodded; she accepted his statement. “You have heard of the Twelve Shamans?” she said.
Ding Ning immediately frowned. He instantly frowned. “This is the reason the Qi Emperor worked with Zheng Xiu?”
Bai Shanshui narrowed her eyes slightly and smiled. “Your old acquaintance Su Qin from the White Goat Cave is working with the Qi Emperor, the puppet carrying out her will.”
Ding Ning was slightly surprised and then said, “He is really better than Li Lingjun.”
Bai Shanshui said, “He wants to trade for the Human Sovereign Jade Annulus with the price of the Twelve Shamans.”
Ding Ning thought and said, “The key is, if he is given the Human Sovereign Jade Annulus… what item gives him confidence that if he gets the Human Sovereign Jade Annulus, it will help him reach realm seven?”
Bai Shanshui grew silent. She also faintly felt that there was a problem here.
“There is a possible, the Human Sovereign Jade Annulus moves from Su Qin to Zheng Xiu. And we get the Twelve Shamans. Then, what will occur will be a war between us and the Qi Dynasty.”
Ding Ning looked at her and said, “Then both of us will be defeated, the Twelve Shamans may not stay in the Qi Dynasty. The Qi Dynasty will not benefit, and Zheng Xiu will obtain the Human Sovereign Jade Annulus.”
Bai Shanshui’s brow furrowed deeply. “This makes sense.”
“But this is good news. There are things we can do here.” Ding Ning slowly said. “We can give the Human Sovereign Jade Annulus. We will take the Twelve Shamans. But we need to slowly think about how to manage this.”
“This time is different from the past.” Bai Shanshui nodded and then said, “Since it is you, you must know the secret of the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard. What is the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard?”
Ding Ning grimaced but did not conceal it, saying, “The Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard in reality is an enormous formation. And one that must use several places in Changling to set up. Back then, the Lonely Mountain Sword Sect must have been located around Changling, and this was their mountain protecting formation. In order to create such a formation, there needs to be many large structures like the Changling turrets which can guide the earth energy.”
Bai Shanshui took a deep breath then sighed emotionally. “So this is more useful to Zheng Xiu than us?”
For this Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard, she had paid a price that could not be quantified, and even bet her own life. But the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard was just something like this.