Chapter 271: The Imminent Warfare
Having known Daji's expectation for the future, the Taoist said with a smile, "Exactly, I saved you so you could unite with Bo Yikao, but not now, and you need to wait a while. I can teach you some transforming exercises for cultivation. If you become an immortal, you can be with Bo Yikao forever. However, you need to promise me one thing."
When hearing that, Daji's happiness quickly vanished. Although she was inexperienced, she also knew that there was no free lunch. The man present would not save her, teach her cultivation methods, and send her to reunite with Bo Yikao without any reason. Daji asked in a low voice, "Great Immortal, what do you want me to do?"
The Taoist laughed and said, "Ha-ha-ha, Su Daji, do not worry. I scorn to threat a mortal like you and Bo Yikao. As for what I want you to do, I will let you know later." He waved his sleeves, and an auspicious cloud appeared to take them to the sky. Su Daji looked at the army led by Su Hu for the last time, and then they disappeared without a trace.
... On the other side, Su Hu brought the Nine-tailed Fox to Zhaoge to meet King Zhou. Initially, King Zhou wanted to behead Su Hu in public. However, Fei Zhong suggested, "Your Majesty, you ought to meet Su Daji, the daughter of Su Hu. If you are satisfied with her appearance, you can forgive Su Hu. If not, you can behead both Su Hu and Su Daji in public."
King Zhou summoned Su Hu and 'Su Daji' to the court. At the sight of King Zhou, the Nine-tailed Fox bowed and said, "Your Majesty, I, Su Daji, am the daughter of a sinner." The Nine- tailed Fox's lips were as red as a cherry, and her bright eyes were full of tender affection. She was exceedingly fascinating while only using light make-up.
Su Daji's sweet girlish voice made King Zhou's mind drift away. When he came to himself, King Zhou immediately ordered his servants. "Send the beauty to Shouxian Palace and wait for me." Later, he issued a decree. "Su Hu's whole family are absolved. Su Hu is reinstated and will become a royal relative. His salary will increase by two-thousand dan every month. I will give a banquet to him for three days in the Xianqing Hall so all the officials can celebrate him. He has to be displayed around the streets for three days. He will return home with honor, accompanied by two city officials and three military officials." Since the Nine-tailed Fox entered the court, King Zhou was obsessed with singing and dancing day and night. He became infatuated with her and began to neglect state affairs. Even if all officials advised him, he would not listen to them. Every day, he just had fun with the Nine-tailed Fox in the imperial harem. No matter how fast time flew and how many affairs needed to be dealt with, he still paid no attention to them.
After entering the court, the Nine-tailed Fox not only pleased King Zhou with her beauty but also captived him with sorcery. As a result, King Zhou was reluctant to leave the imperial harem. Gradually, the Nine-tailed Fox also found out the benefits of being King Zhou's concubine. Although she was just a concubine in the imperial harem, her fortune got better and better due to the dynasty's luck. It could be called a heaven-sent fortune for her, who formerly had nothing at all.
In addition, the Nine-tailed Fox also discovered that there were a lot of tonic Spiritual Medicines, which were inexhaustible. Meanwhile, there were endless Mystical Beasts, which could be enjoyed every day. With these things, she made astounding advances in her cultivation. However, her Demon Aura was also revealed because she killed too many Mystical Beasts and her cultivation advanced too quickly. Zhaoge was saturated with Demon Aura, which drew the attention of Yun Zhongzi, a Qi-cultivating Master in Zhongnan Mountains. He was a listed disciple of the Clan of Enlightenment, and his cultivation was very high. Seeing that Zhaoge was pervaded with Demon Aura, he went down the hill to conquer the demon. Initially, he planned to kill the Nine- tailed Fox with a wooden sword, which was a magic weapon. Unfortunately, the Shang Dynasty was not favored by the God. King Zhou listened to the Nine-tailed Fox's calumny and destroyed the wooden sword.
Bedeviled by the Nine-tailed Fox, King Zhou became more and more silly and tyrannical and made various horrifying, cruel criminal punishments. As a result, courtiers dared not to advise him. However, Fei Zhong and You Hun were deeply trusted by King Zhou for their shameless flattery. The two often presented calumny to King Zhou, so the other courtiers feared them.
Queen Jiang, head of the imperial harem, knew all things, so she spoke bluntly to King Zhou. However, King Zhou had already been possessed by the demon for too long, so he would not care at all about what others said. Without resort, Queen Jiang could only make it hot for the Nine-tailed Fox. Unfortunately, Queen Jiang was framed by the Nine-tailed Fox and Fei Zhong. Her two sons were rescued from the execution ground and disappeared from the scene. After Queen Jiang died, King Zhou feared that Jiang Huanchu, Queen Jiang's father and Marquis of the East, would plot a rebellion. Under Fei Zhong and You Hun's advice, King Zhou summoned four vassals to Zhaoge and planned to execute them all, to guard against future evil. Shang Rong, the prime minister, presented admonishment at the risk of death in the Nine Halls. Regretfully, King Zhou did not change his mind, and Shang Rong recklessly dashed out of the Nine Halls due to disappointment.
King Zhou issued decrees to the four vassals and they set off for Zhaoge. However, Ji Chang, the Marquis of the West, had already known that he would get sick before his departure. Although he would not die, he would be trapped in Zhaoge for several years. Therefore, he ordered Bo Yikao, the eldest son, to take charge of all things in Xiqi. Meanwhile, he ordered them to wait for him, rather than act rashly.
On the way to Zhaoge, Ji Chang picked up a baby. He called him Leizhenzi and took him as his hundredth son. Later, Leizhenzi was taken by Yun Zhongzi as a disciple. In the future, father and son would meet again when Ji Chang got out of trouble. Since Ji Chang knew that it would not be convenient to take Leizhenzi to Zhaoge, he had no choice but to leave Leizhenzi to Yun Zhongzi. When the four vassals arrived at Zhaoge, King Zhou suddenly launched an attack on them. Jiang Huanchu, the Marquis of the East, and E Chongyu, the Marquis of the South, were beheaded in public. Chong Houfu, the Marquis of the North, escaped death by bribing Fei Zhong and You Hun. Ji Chang, the Marquis of the West, also escaped death, because all officials mediated for him and he was known as a man of virtue. However, he was imprisoned by King Zhou in You Li, to avoid future evil.
At that moment, Jiang Ziya had been a disciple of the Clan of Enlightenment for thirty or forty years in Mount Kunlun. He had barely reached the Realm of Veridical Immortal, which depressed the Honoured Lord of Origin. Although Jiang Ziya practiced hard and used a lot of resources, his cultivation was not as high due to his poor aptitude. If he had not been a person in the God Deification Ceremony, he might have been expelled by the Honoured Lord of the Origin.
Chapter 272: Leaving the Mountain
However, walls had ears and the news that Jiang Ziya had an Auspicious Mark of Winged Tiger still leaked out. Honored Lord of the Origin did not feel angry. Instead, he felt honored that the person who was part in the God Deification Ceremony now became a member of the Clan of Enlightenment, which meant that it was the Clan of Enlightenment that dominated the Battle of Gods Investiture. At this point, the Clan of Enlightenment gained an advantage. However, the glee that Honoured Lord of the Origin felt did not last long.
Before long, news came that Shen Gongbao, the newly recruited disciple of Sage Zhunti in the Western Religious Sect, also had an Auspicious Mark of Winged Tiger, which shocked both Honored Lord of the Origin and Zhunti. There were two people with the Auspicious Mark of Winged Tiger to be in the God Deification Ceremony. After an investigation, both truly had the Auspicious Mark of Winged Tiger. However, since they were both enveloped by tribulation clouds, it was hard to deduce further.
That being said, in contrast, Zhunti was particularly proud, not for other reasons, but for that Shen Gongbao's aptitude was ten times as much as that of Jiang Ziya. It had been more than three decades since Jiang Ziya became the disciple of Honoured Lord of the Origin. Honored Lord of the Origin had trained him mentally and made him eat many spiritual fruits, spiritual medicines and magic elixirs, but Jiang Ziya's cultivation still did not improve.
But Shen Gongbao was different. The few resources he received from Sage Zhunti for cultivation was nothing compared to those Jiang Ziya had from Honored Lord of the Origin, but his cultivation improved quickly. In the past three decades, Shen Gongbao had reached the realm of Primordial Unity Black Immortal from an Earthly Immortal, two realms higher than Jiang Ziya's.
In comparison, Honored Lord of the Origin naturally felt shamed. In fact, there was a way to rapidly improve Jiang Ziya's cultivation. That was to go to his big brother, Laozi, and ask for one golden elixir. Nine Cycles Golden Elixirs were rare, but the other golden elixirs were common and Laozi surely would give it to him. However, Honored Lord of the Origin felt embarrassed.
If it got out that Honored Lord of the Origin needed others to help him teach his disciple, he would be extremely ashamed. So Honored Lord of the Origin could only let it go, providing all kinds of cultivating resources and teaching him as usual and as for which realm Jiang Ziya would reach, it depends on his fate. It would be fine if Jiang Ziya was actually part of the God Deification Ceremony. If not, Honored Lord of the Origin had no way about it, either. He could not snatch Shen Gongbao from the Western Religious Sect.
Jiang Ziya's cultivation improved slowly, but he was not discouraged. Besides, Jiang Ziya learned military tactics and state-governing strategies as well, which was arranged by Honored Lord of the Origin. The Battle of Gods Investiture was aimed at destroying the Shang and revitalizing the Zhou, thus the people in the God Deification Ceremony naturally needed to understand both. Honored Lord of the Origin was preparing for the unforseen.
Jiang Ziya's cultivation was not high, but he was a true blue second-generation disciple of the Clan of Enlightenment, and the only one taught by Honoured Lord of the Origin in person besides Twelve Golden Immortals, so he had a very high status. Jiang Ziya was an easygoing person in nature, whether the second-generation disciples or younger generation disciples, he got along with them.
The situation of Shen Gongbao was much better than that of Jiang Ziya. Shen Gongbao was called a genius as his cultivation improved rapidly. Moreover, he was highly regarded by Sage Zhunti. Since he was candid in nature and fond of making friends, he got along well with the disciples in the clan. Whenever he was free, he would travel through the Untainted Land and make friends with capable people and called each other Fellow Taoist.
What made Zhunti admire most was that Shen Gongbao even recruited a lot of individual cultivators for the Western Religious Sect, which made Zhunti very happy. Even though Zhunti was in the East, because of the God Deification Ceremony, he was unable to recruit many to the Western Religious Sect at this juncture so as to avoid the hostility of all Sages in the East. However, it was different if Shen Gongbao did so. Shen Gongbao was a junior and a person listed in the God Deification Ceremony, so all Sages could only turn a blind eye to him.
Four decades had passed since they two became disciples. One day, Honoured Lord of the Origin suddenly called White Crane Lad and ordered. "Child, go invite your martial uncle Jiang, I have something to speak with him." Hearing that, White Crane Lad turned into an Immortal Crane and flew over Mount Kunlun, only to find Jiang Ziya meditating on a large stone. White Crane Lad hovered over Jiang Ziya's head, shouting with his long and sharp beak. "Martial uncle Jiang, the master asked me to summon you. You'd better go quickly." After hearing the words, Jiang Ziya stood up from the big stone and waved to White Crane Lad, hinting that he had heard it. He adjusted his clothes and hurried to Yuxu Palace.
Entering Yuxu Palace, Jiang Ziya saw Honoured Lord of the Origin sitting on the platform with his eyes slightly closed, as if he were in meditation. Jiang Ziya dared not neglect his greetings. He stepped forward and bowed. "Master, your disciple greets you. I wonder what did Master call me for." Jiang Ziya was worried whenever he came to see Honored Lord of the Origin, fearing that Honored Lord of the Origin would expel him and ask him to leave the mountain because of his poor aptitude.
However, today his premonition came true. Honored Lord of the Origin opened his eyes and said, "Jiang Shang, four decades years have passed since you became my disciple. Unfortunately, you're born with bad luck and it's difficult for you to comprehend the Way of Celestial Immortality. You could only be a mortal and enjoy the riches of the world. Now the Luck of Cheng Tang had ended and the royal family of Zhou will revitalize, thus it's time for you to leave the mountain." Jiang Ziya was shocked upon hearing his words. He pleaded bitterly,"Master, I'm sincere to comprehend the Way of Celestial Immortality. Though the progress is slow, my mind of Taoism is firm and I'm determined to leave the mortal world. So I beg you to show mercy and allow me to stay in Mount Kunlun." Jiang Ziya immediately broke down in tears upon hearing Honored Lord of the Origin ordering him to leave the mountain. He prayed hard that Honored Lord of Origin would withdraw his order.
Honored Lord of the Origin sighed. "My child, that's the will of Heaven, and I can't go against it. Now that the Cultivation Tribulation descend again and the God Deification Ceremony is drawing near. You're part of the God Deification Ceremony, thus you can't stay on the mountain for long. When you achieve your duties being part of the God Deification Ceremony, you'll climb the mountain someday, so you don't have to worry. You'd better pack and leave the mountain as soon as possible!" Finishing his words, Honored Lord of the Origin waved his sleeves and disappeared.
Seeing this, Jiang Ziya had to bow and say, "Master, your disciple accepts your order and will go down the mountain now." After returning to his own Immortal's Cave, Jiang Ziya packed his things, said goodbye to his fellow seniors and juniors and descended Mount Kunlun. However, Jiang Ziya had been on the mountain for four decades years, and now he suddenly had to go down the maintain, so he did not know where to go. Suddenly, he thought that he still had a sworn brother, thus he could go to him for help and make plans in the future.
Same as Jiang Ziya, Shen Gongbao also got the order from Zhunti, who ordered him to leave the mountain to help the Lord. Unlike Jiang Ziya, Shen Gongbao had friends all over the world, so he could go anywhere. After leaving the Square Mountain, Shen Gongbao visited his friends and inquired about human affairs in passing. He would give full consideration before making any decisions, otherwise, he might suffer losses.
After some inquiries, Shen Gongbao basically knew about the current human affairs. King Zhou of the Shang was tyrannical and state affairs were in chaos, so King Zhou was definitely not an enlightened Lord. Chonghu Marquis was cruel and merciless and helped a tyrant to victimize his subjects, thus he was not an enlightened Lord either. Except for the two dead vassals of the four, only Marquis of the West Ji Chang was left. However, Ji Chang was currently imprisoned at You Li, so it was difficult for him to get out.
After much deliberation, Shen Gongbao decided to go to Xiqi first, as the Shang Dynasty was the world of the Clan of Severity. As the disciple of the Western Religious Sect influenced by Zhunti and other disciples, Shen Gongbao had lost his lost his liking of the Clan of Severity. Instead, he wanted to go Xiqi, where the Clan of Severity did have a hand in, so as to make an opening for the Western Religious Sect in the Battle of Gods Investiture.
Now that Bo Yikao, the eldest son of Ji Chang, dominated state affairs with the help of numerous capable people, including Boyi, Shuqi, Taidian, Hong Yao, San Yisheng and others, Xiqi was peaceful compared to other cities in the nine provinces. Seeing such a situation, Shen Gongbao felt that he had come to the right place, so he stayed in Xiqi for the time being in order to handle matters.
As the small hid in the wild while the great hid in the city. Shen Gongbao immediately went to the city of Xiqi and set up a shop for divination. For those who asked for divination, Shen Gongbao only charged one penny. Since Shen Gongbao was good at divining, his divination always came true, which made him famous in Xiqi. Endless crowds of people came to ask for divination every day and Shen Gongbao never refused anyone. He opened the door in the day from 7 a.m and closed the door at 5 p.m everyday without fail interruption.
Chapter 273: Two Prime Ministers, Different Destinies
In Xiqi City, at late night, Shen Gongbao sat beside the oil lamp using hands to nip it and suddenly said with a smile on his face, "Haha, alas, I did not waste my time for fortunetelling and I finally got this chance. Tomorrow will be time to see whether I will succeed or not." Shen Gongbao waved his hands to put out the oil lamp, leaving a streak of smoke rising slowly in the shinning of moonlight.
There was a queue in front of his door waiting for their fortune to be told when Shen Gongbao opened for business the next morning. But Shen Gongbao just glanced at them with a smile on his face. The first one who wanted to have fortune- telling was a young man. Shen Gongbao looked at this young man and said with a smile, "What fortune do you want to predict?"
This young man smiled at Shen Gongbao and said, "Since Taoist Priest is good at prediction, why do you ask me?" Looking at this young man's smile, Shen Gongbao understood that this young man wanted to sound out his abilities. Therefore, he picked up teacup on the table and threw it, with one word appearing on the ground. This young man turned pale when he saw the word "Father" on the floor. Then he continued to say, "Taoist Priest really has good skills of prediction. So do you know when the person I seek would return?" Shen Gongbao counted his fingers and used an ink brush to write a line of words a bamboo slip. "He will return after seven years of disaster." Then he gave it back to that young man.
This young man facial changed slightly after receiving the bamboo slip, thus he got up and said, "Taoist Priest really has good skills, and since you could predict this, I assume you have already know who I am. I am Bo Yikao, the eldest son of Marquis of the West. I heard that a fortune-teller came to our city, and that's why I came here to visit you."
This man was Bo Yikao. He heard that a genius came to Xiqi City. He planned to recruit some talented men here, so Shen Gongbao was naturally one of the best choices. However, he was also afraid that Shen Gongbao was a fraud so he dressed up to test Shen Gongbao. If Shen Gongbao really was a genius, he would invite him personally.
The two predictions Shen Gongbao gave to him was what Bo Yikao wanted. He had already calculated the luck for himself when Ji Chang was about to leave. He had seven years of imprisonment in Zhaoge. It just fitted, "He will return after seven years of disaster," which was written by Shen Gongbao. No one knew it except Ji Chang and Bo Yikao. Now that Shen Gongbao wrote this prediction, it must be calculated by him.
Shen Gongbao looked at Bo Yikao with a smile and said, "You wanted to test me. Do you have an answer now?" Yesterday night, Shen Gongbao had figured out he would have an honored guest today. But he never thought that this person was the lord of Xiqi. It was really unexpected to him but he was satisfied with it because he had planned to approach Bo Yikao.
Shen Gongbao was ecstatic at Bo Yikao's arrival. He found that Bo Yikao was surrounded by Zi Wei Emperor Aura, which was the symbol of an emperor. Shen Gongbao was delighted for having come to the right place. This Bo Yikao was more likely to be the wise master his teacher told him. If he could assist Bo Yikao, he could make a difference someday.
After seeing Shen Gongbao's unshaken face, Bo Yikao asked, "I don't know where Taoist Priest is going to, and why did you come to Xiqi? I guess setting this stand for fortunetelling in Xiqi was not just to help people escape from their disasters." Bo Yikao was smart, and he should understand the intention of Shen Gongbao. Shen Gongbao laughed and said with confidence, "My name is Shen Gongbao. I'm a disciple of the Sage, Zhunti, who is the master of the Western Religious Sect. This time, my teacher Zhunti ask me to come down to find a wise master. I saw Xiqi was surrounded by roaring Zi Wei Aura, so I came here to check it out. After meeting you today, I saw you surrounded by Zi Wei Emperor Aura and I understood my teacher's words."
Hearing this, Bo Yikao started to ask, "Taoist Priest was a disciple of a Sage. I'm sorry I didn't recognize you. Xiqi is eager to recruit some talented men. Would you like to devote your talent to Xiqi and work as the Imperial Astronomer, which is equal to the Ordinary Grand Master? What's your opinion?" Imperial Astronomer was a position especially for fortunetelling and it was really suitable for Shen Gongbao.
Shen Gongbao listened and smiled. "I won't refuse you since you invited me sincerely." He had planned to get close to Bo Yikao and this goal had been met. The position of Imperial Astronomer and Ordinary Grand Master was not the most important thing, but the only thing he did was to let Bo Yikao see his talents and won his trust.
Compared to Shen Gongbao, Jiang Ziya was not that lucky. When he left Mount Kunlun, he returned to Zhaoge City and went to his godbrother's house which was more splendid than ever. There were green willows at the gate of the door. What's more, this place was a treasure house. And living here could bring a lifetime of riches.
Song Yiren was excited when his doorman told him that his old friend Jiang Ziya came to visit him. He had lost contact with Jiang Ziya for 40 years and was worried about him. Therefore, he was delighted to see Jiang Ziya return safely and went to welcome him immediately. They both sighed with emotion when they met with each other.
Song Yiren asked many questions. He found out that Jiang Ziya was still a bachelor. "As an old saying goes, there are three forms of unfilial conduct, of which the worst is to have no descendants. My brother, I will introduce a marriage to you so that you can have your own children and carry on the family line, without losing the Spiritual Inheritance of Jiang.
Jiang Ziya wanted to refuse but due to Song Yiren's insistence, he gave up for later discussion. To his surprise, Song Yiren went to Majia village to introduce a girl to him in the next morning. Landlord Ma had a daughter who was 68 years old. But she was still a virgin and never got married. Landlord Ma was full of joy for Song Yiren's introduction. With the help of Song Yiren, they had feasts, invited neighbors, relatives, and friends to celebrate Jiang Ziya's wedding after they set an auspicious day. Although Jiang Ziya resisted it, he could not refuse Song Yiren's a piece of kindness. Therefore, he went to the nuptial room with Ma and they became an old couple who were worthy of the name.
After the wedding, Song Yiren also helped Jiang Ziya with his business. But Jiang Ziya was too unlucky to have any success. He sold bamboo strainer first with several days of hard work, but he sold nothing at all. Later, he sold flour, which most were blown off by the wind and only sold a little. Because of it, Ma often quarreled with him.
It was lucky that Song Yiren had a large fortune and let Jiang Ziya run a restaurant. However, Jiang Ziya still suffered from great losses every day. Finally, he gave up and began to tell fortune like Shen Gongbao. After that, his life became much better and his wife was much settled.
Chapter 274: Ziya Went to Gongbao for Shelter
In the imperial court of Zhaoge City, the nine-tailed fox charmed King Zhou on the one hand and enhanced her cultivation on the other side. Indulged in her actions, she forgot about meeting up with the Pipa Spirit, who had been waiting for news from her in the Xuanyuan tomb for a long time. Worries emerged from the Pipa Spirit after waiting for so long. She shapeshifted into a human and headed toward Zhaoge City.
The Human Tribe reigned Untainted Land, which had many martial artists. The Pipa Spirit was a small evil spirit; this caused her not to dare to ride the clouds to head toward Zhaoge. Thanks to the Pure Aura of Fate from Goddess Nvywa, she could walk among the human cultivators, as long as she did not use devil skills before them, they would not be able to figure out her origin. However, she was exhausted from traveling.
Along the way to Zhaoge, the Pipa Spirit asked around about the nine-tailed fox. After getting to know that empress Su Daji had caused a huge uproar in the imperial court, she guessed that Su Daji must be the incarnation of her sister, the nine-tailed fox. She planned to go to her sister for shelter. She had not reached the Way of Celestial Immortality yet, but if the luck of the Human Tribe were on her side and she could use resources from the Human Tribe's dynasty, her cultivation would advance by leaps and bounds. Meanwhile, she could become an immortal quicker.
Unfortunately, luck was not on her side. When she arrived at Zhaoge, she was shocked by its grandness. After seeing a divination stall, she went inside to have some fun. Sadly the fortuneteller was Jiang Ziya. At first sight, he did not notice anything peculiar about the Pipa Spirit; she was covered by the Pure Aura of Fate after all.
The Pipa Spirit required Jiang Ziya to look at her palm. Although she had a human form because of the Pure Aura of Fate, her palm was different. Jiang Ziya saw an inkling appear which caused him to grab the Pipa Spirit's Distal Pulse, Middle Pulse Position, and Proximal Pulse suddenly and sealed her Dantian, making her impossible to escape.
To an outsider, Jiang Ziya grasped the hand of a beautiful woman. Naturally, this caused an uproar among the passers-by. Bi Gan, Assistant to Counselor-in-chief passed by and reported this matter to King Zhou. King Zhou then ordered Jiang Ziya to kill the evil spirit behind the newly-built Star-picking Tower. Accompanying King Zhou, the nine-tailed fox saw her sister captured and started to worry. However, she could not plead for her in public. She could only witness how her sister was showing her original body due to the scorning of the True Concentration Fire, released by Jian Ziya. Luckily, the Pipa Spirit could save herself by relying on the Pure Aura of Fate which she attained from Goddess Nvywa. Later, the nine-tailed fox begged King Zhou to give her the jade pipa (the original body of the Pipa Spirit) as a collection.
Jiang Ziya was dubbed as Junior Minister because he killed the devil spirit, and took the post of Imperial Astronomer. The nine-tailed fox disliked Jiang Ziya for his actions and yearned to avenge the Pipa Spirit. She placed the Pipa Spirit under the roof of the Star-picking Tower to absorb rays of sun and moonlight. The Pipa Spirit also drank a bowl of human blood every day to restore her strength and wait for the day of her rebirth.
It was a pity Jiang Ziya's reign as an officer didn't last long. The nine-tailed fox wanted to make his life a living hell to avenge the Pipa Spirit. This caused Jiang Ziya to suffer daily, and in the end, he had to abandon his position and headed home. He told his wife that he had offended King Zhou and had to flee. His wife was astonished hearing this. While Jiang Ziya was preparing their luggage, his wife (Lady Ma), took out an old sachet from her waist and opened it. Inside the sachet was a piece of silk cloth, it read: "Leave Zhaoge with your husband, and you'll live in prosperity." After pondering for a long time, she decided to leave Zhaoge together with her husband. Shortly after they had left Zhaoge, a bunch of soldiers arrived at their home, but nothing was found.
During their escape, Lady Ma had nothing to complain about. After all, Jiang Ziya was a being who had reached the Way of Celestial Immortality, this meant he could take care of Lady Ma. This caused her not to regret making the decision to leave with him. The words in the sachet were given by the immortal. Until now her life was lived by the words of that immortal, that's what she had to believe.
King Zhou was a brutal king and had no principle of truth and righteousness. People of the Shang Dynasty fleed to other vassal territories one after another. Xiqi accepted most of those refugees. After acquiring knowledge about this, Jiang Ziya thought Xiqi must be an enlightened sovereign. Therefore, he hurried to Xiqi together with Lady Ma. The border station of the Shang Dynasty, however, did not let them go. Jiang Ziya used the Underground-walking Technique to cross the border of the Shang Dynasty together with Lady Ma and hundreds of refugees. They reached the boundary of Xiqi rapidly. After their arrival in Xiqi, Jiang Ziya asked around and heard that Shen Gongbao, the one he felt familiar with at first sight when they formally acknowledged teachers, was an officer of Xiqi. Shen Gongbao had a good reputation and gained the trust of both the local people and the other officers. If Jiang Ziya were alone, he could have lived in a remote and rustic place, but it didn't work since he now took his spouse with him to an unfamiliar place. He could not let his wife live in poor conditions. Since he had not seen Shen Gongbao for decades, he went to him for shelter.
Besides, Shen Gongbao was quite skillful. Even though he did not know how to manage the state affairs, he was proficient in all kinds of magic: divination, making clouds and rain, as well as slaying monsters. This caused the trust Bo Yikao had in him to increase. In only one or two years, Shen Gongbao had become an Imperial Master. He was a wise individual that did not interfere with administration and was only responsible for resolving trouble within Xiqi, that's why he was both loved and esteemed by the people of Xiqi.
The untainted land was extremely broad. Although the Human Tribe occupied half of the territory, the land was unmeasurable. As one of the four vassals of Shang Dynasty, Ji Chang, Marquis of the West, possessed a big chunk of land. Though the land of the Marquis was called Xiqi, it was because its capital city was named like that. However, the land Xiqi contained many cities.
Shen Gongbao could not take care of the entirety of Xiqi by himself. Therefore, he invited disciples of his master and his friends. Plenty of them mastered magic skills or had magic treasures with them. Bo Yikao felt delighted by the sight of Shen Gongbao gathering so many talents and promoted his friends to become his officers.
Jiang Ziya went to the Imperial Master Mansion together with Lady Ma. Taking a glance at the imposing building, Lady Ma asked worriedly, "Do you really want to enter the mansion? Shen Gongbao has become an Imperial Master by now and gained a high status, you have only known each other for several days, how can he pay attention to you?"
Jiang Ziya laughed and replied, "Your view is too narrow. When we met each other at that time, we felt familiar with each other, if not for the gust of wind we might have been brothers of the same master. Now I'm here to seek shelter, he will definitely meet with me. Brother Shen is broad-minded. If you don't believe me, let me have a try." Jiang Ziya went to the Imperial Master Mansion and was pulled aside by the guards. One of the guards asked him, "Who are you? What are you doing here?" Jiang Ziya saluted and replied, "Please report to your Imperial Master that his old friend Jiang Ziya and his wife have come to visit him." The guards heard that this man was an old friend of Imperial Master, they dared not neglect this matter and reported to Shen Gongbao at once.
Shen Gongbaon was in the garden, and he had nothing to do, so he divined the secrets of heaven under the pavilion. Suddenly he was surprised. A bewildered expression showed on his face. He said, "Huh? An old friend has visited me, who is it?" At this time, a guard came here and reported venerably, "Imperial Master, a man called Jiang Ziya is waiting outside the door. He said that he's your old friend."
Shen Gongbao was overjoyed when he heard the name of his old friend. They had met on the way to acknowledge their masters. Though one was a monster and the other was a human being, Jiang Ziya did not disdain and detest Shen Gongbao. They felt familiar with each other when they met and talked happily. It was a pity that they got split up by a gust of wind. At first, Shen Gongbao was worried about Jiang Ziya. Later on, he heard that Jiang Ziya had become the disciple of Honoured Lord of the Origin and rested assured everything was fine. Since then, Shen Gongbao pursued Dao wholeheartedly. Although he had the opportunity to go out, he knew that he'd better not bother Jiang Ziya, for they belonged to two different sects and Jiang Ziya stayed in Mount Kunlun all the time. Forty years had passed, he was definitely delighted when he knew that his old friend had come here to pay him a visit. He instantly stood up and went to welcome Jiang Ziya in person.
Jiang Ziya looked calm and comfortable in front of the huge gate, but a worried look could be seen from Lady Ma. At this time, hearty laughter could be heard inside the gate. "Haha, I divined today and figured out that an old friend has come here to visit me, but I had no idea that it was Brother Jiang! Please forgive me. I should have welcomed you earlier." Shen Gongbao went out hurriedly. He was laughing while speaking.
Chapter 275: Shen Gongbao's Suspicion
As soon as he saw Shen Gongbao, Jiang Ziya laughed. "Hahaha... 40 years had passed, but you, my brother, still looks amazing! While I became like this." Jiang Ziya became an immortal in his late years, so he looked like an elderly. Although he could change his appearance into a young man, how could he do that after he had already got used to his face?
Shen Gongbao found that Jiang Ziya has aged a lot, but he had the air of a deity surrounding him. His cultivation of Veridical Immortal really shocked him. Shen Gongbao's master once said to him that Jiang Ziya's innate structure was bad, but it was even worse than he had expected. Even with the support and education of Honored Lord of the Origin, he could only reached the stage of Veridical Immortality, which meant how poor his innate quality was!
However, Shen Gongbao was not a person who would only make friends based on cultivation. Staring at the old lady standing beside Jiang Ziya, he asked, "Brother Jiang, who is this lady?" Ma-Shi was a mortal and was quite old. Shen Gongbao was curious and but he didn't thought of her as Jiang Ziya's wife. Since Jiang Ziya was an immortal, how could he marry a mortal woman. Jiang Ziya answered, "This is my wife, Ma-Shi. Two years ago, I followed my master's order to visit my sworn brother in Zhaoge City. He introduced her to me and we got married. We escaped to Xiqi City after offending King Zhou later on. We heard that you were here, so we intended to come to you for help."
Hearing this, Shen Gongbao laughed and said, "What are you talking about? We are like brothers, so what's mine is yours.You don't have to be that polite. Come on this way, I have prepared a meal to welcome you."
Then, Shen Gongbao pulled Jiang Ziya inside, and Ma-Shi followed with a smile on her face.
She thought that they might make a fortune this time. Because they were now under the care of Shen Gongbao, who was the national priest, so Jiang Ziya could at least get a good position.
Shen Gongbao was separated from Jiang Ziya for more than 40 years, so they naturally had a lot of things to share. They felt nostalgic when remembering their experiences as apprentice. When Shen Gongbao heard that Jiang Ziya used to work for Zhaoge city as an officer, and then offended King Zhou and Su Daji, Shen Gongbao laughed and said, "King Zhou was profligate and devoided of principles. My brother, why did you choose to assist him?"
Jiang Ziya was a little bit embarrassed after hearing Shen Gongbao's ridicule, and answered, "At first, I just went to Zhaoge City for my sworn brother. By accident, I joined the royal court. I planned to persuade King Zhou to be a good king, but he couldn't listen to any suggestions. He even asked me to help him to build a gazebo which needed quite a lot of labor and money. I reprimanded him in a spike of anger, but I hadn't expected that he wanted to kill me. Therefore, I had to escape from Zhaoge City with my wife."
Shen Gongbao understood after listening to him. Although he knew Jiang Ziya for a few days only, he knew he was the one who held the candle to the devil. Then, he asked, "Brother Jiang, since you have left King Zhou, what's your plan for the future? If there is something that I can help, just asked."
Hearing this, Jiang Ziya started to say, "I followed my master's order to assist a wise king. On the way from Zhaoge to Xiqi, I always heard that Bo Yikao, the first son of Marquis of the West, had a good reputation. Therefore, I came and joined his clan. Since brother Shen is the national priest, could you do me a favor to introduce me to the king?" If Shen Gongbao promised to introduce him to the King, it would save a lot of trouble.
In Investiture of the Gods, Jiang Ziya lived by Pan Stream of the shore of Wei River for several years and waited in silence.
Then, King Wen of Zhou came to invite Jiang Ziya to assist him. Indeed, if Jiang Ziya came to assist King Wen of Zhou in a sudden, he wouldn't get a good position.
Therefore, he had to wait. But now, it was totally different. If he could get Shen Gongbao's introduction directly, he could meet with Bo Yikao face to face. Only if he revealed his capability he could get a very important position. That way, he didn't have to go back to Pan Stream to be a recluse.
Shen Gongbao was stunned after hearing this. He considered for a while and said, "Brother, you don't have to hurry. You can live in my house for a few days and I will find a suitable moment to introduce you to Lord Bo Yikao. What do you think? With your talents and abilities, Lord Bo will entrust you with an important position. In due course, it will be the time to make a contribution to this nation." Hearing this, Jiang Ziya agreed and did not doubt his words. Later that night, after Jiang Ziya and Ma-Shi fell into sleep, Shen Gongbao head towards the west by the clouds.
Xiqi City was located in the east of the Untainted Land. After a short while, Shen Gongbao arrived at Square Mountain. Noticing Shen Gongbao's back, the disciples guarding the mountain asked, "Martial uncle Shen, you have become the national priest of Xiqi. How can you find the time to come back today?"
Shen Gongbao didn't answer his question directly, but said, "I naturally have something urgent to report to my master." He hurried up to the mountain top. The disciple was shocked. Usually, Shen Gongbao was a kind and polite person in his mind and even showed kindness to any third generation disciples like him. It seemed that he must have met something important.
Shen Gongbao kneeled down before Zhunti. "I, Shen Gongbao, am here meet my master." Zhunti surprised that Shen Gongbao was in haste, and asked, "Gongbao, why are you in such a hurry? Is there anything urgent? Come and tell me." In Zhunti's memory, Shen Gongbao was always steady and modest. He must meet something urgent.
Shen Gongbao stood up and answered, "Master, a man came to me this afternoon, who was Jiang Ziya of Clan of Enlightenment. We first met on the way to go for apprentices. In a few days, we got along well with each other. But we went our separate ways. Today, he suddenly came to my house and wanted me to introduce him to Bo Yikao, the eldest son of Marquis of the West. I can't make a decision, so I hope you, my master, could give me some advice."
Hearing this, Zhunti was a little stunned. Considering for a while, he smiled in a sudden. It seemed that he reminded of something delightful. He said happily, "Hahaha... Heaven helped us all. Gongbao, since you are on good terms with each other, you should help him and introduce him to Bo Yikao. In fact, you don't have to ask me for suggestions."
Shen Gongbao was confused after hearing the words. He asked, "My master, you used to order me to assist a wise lord and Bo Yikao trusts me so much these days. Although Jiang Ziya is my good friend, I can't make any possible damage to our Western Religious Sect's interests. If Jiang Ziya gets a promotion, the Clan of Enlightenment will get benefits." Zhunti nodded and was satisfied with Shen Gongbao's loyalty to Western Religious Sect. He said, "I am happy to hear your concern about our Sect. However, although you are good at magic arts, you have no idea about how to deal with country affairs and military tactics. Jiang Ziya is good at both indeed. If you two could assist Xiqi together, you will have great achievement."
Shen Gongbao was confused after hearing Zhunti's words. In the past, his master was always stopped by the three Sects of Human, Enlightenment, and Severity when he wanted to preach in the east. Now, Shen Gongbao tried so hard to make their Western Religious Sect trusted by Xiqi, but his master asked him to share their honor with Clan of Enlightenment. It did not seem to be his master's behavior. However, he could not say anything but he felt confused.
Zhunti seemed to figure out Shen Gongbao's confusion. Then, he said, "I can tell you why I make this decision. Now, the Cultivation Tribulation of Heaven and Earth is on the way, which can be called the Cultivation Tribulation of God Deification. In this tribulation, Heavenly Court will crown 365 main Gods, 2,000 Demigods and 84,000 celestial troops and generals. Except for the main Gods, the other will be filled with the ones who died during the Cultivation Tribulation." While the 365 main Gods was responsible for the Tribe of Humanity, Clan of Enlightenment and our Western Religious Sect. The cause can date from the era of Three Royals and Five Emperors. At that time, the four Sects committed Killing Calamity when assisting the Human Sovereigns. Therefore, our disciples needed to pass tribulation in human's dynasty. You should know that the Tribe of Severity is really powerful with millions of celestials following and has covered the whole Shang Dynasty. The Tribe of Humanity, Clan of Enlightenment and Western Religious Sect can't even match it.
Now, although you have come to the power of Xiqi for our Western Religious Sect, we are too weak to defeat the Shang Dynasty on our own even when the time to fight the Tribe of Severity comes. At this moment, Jiang Shang (Jiang Ziya) came to you, so you can just do him a favor. Later on, if we can join hands with the Clan of Enlightenment, we will have more chance in winning. Do you understand?"
Chapter 276: Recommendation
Shen Gongbao immediately nodded upon hearing the words. He was born smart, so he got the point. However, he still had some doubts, so he asked, "Master, I understand what you said, but I'm afraid that when Jiang Ziya gains power one day, the Clan of Enlightenment will develop vigorously in Xiqi. As a result, it will inevitably impact the position of our Western Religious Sect in Xiqi. What should we do then?"
Zhunti nodded with a smile. Shen Gongbao was cautious and thoughtful. He served Western Religious Sect wholeheartedly. Then Zhunti said, "Your worries are understandable, but we have to join hands with the Clan of Enlightenment. Before that, you just need to do one thing to hold firm your position in Xiqi."
Shen Gongbao thought for a while. Suddenly, an idea struck his mind. He laughingly said, "I understand. Master, you want me to help Bo Yikao save his father, the Marquis of the West Ji Chang. Then I'll become the savior of the entire Xiqi. Ji Chang and his son will naturally have more faith in me as well. Even if Jiang Ziya is put in an important position, he will just be a talent that I recommended for Xiqi. In that case, the Western Religious Sect will have equal shares of honor with the Clan of Enlightenment in Xiqi at least, if not more than it." Seeing that Shen Gongbao was quick-witted in response, Zhunti guffawed. "Shen Gongbao, I haven't misjudged you. However, it's not easy to save Ji Chang. At that time, Bo Yikao will surely go to Zhaoge in person. I intended to do a divination, but the secrets of heaven are in chaos. I'm afraid that it's hard to predict whether this trip is a blessing or a curse. You shall then request to go with him to keep him safe."
Shen Gongbao nodded after hearing Zhunti's words. The time limit of seven years was approaching. If Zhaoge had no intention to release Ji Chang, Bo Yikao would surely go to Zhaoge and make atonement for his father. Since King Zhou was fatuous and moody, no one knows if this trip was a blessing or a curse. If Bo Yikao died, everything Shen Gongbao had in Xiqi will be affected.
After bidding farewell to Zhunti, Shen Gongbao returned to Xiqi that very night. Soon after he arrived home, he began to deduce the fate of Bo Yikao. However, as his master Zhunti had said, he could not figure out. Looking at the bright falling moon, Shen Gongbao frowned and began to plan how to save Marquis of the West Ji Chang, which was an important event for both him and the Western Religious Sect.
By daybreak, Shen Gongbao already had a plan on how to save Ji Chang. He looked to the room where Jiang Ziya lived and sighed, "Oh Ziya, the will of Heaven always makes fools of people. If we had learned from the same master, we would be honest with each other today. However, as the Way of Heaven is unpredictable, I can't do anything."
The next morning, Shen Gongbao had someone invite the Jiang's for dinner. At the table, Shen Gongbao asked with a smile, "My brother, I wonder whether you had a good rest last night. Anything you feel uncomfortable about feel free to tell me, and I'll ask them to rearrange it. Make yourself at home, otherwise, you are treating me like an outsider."
Jiang Ziya waved his hand and chuckled. "My family was poor since young. Later, after I left my master and went down the mountain, if nt for my sworn brother Song Yiren, I would live in poverty. I now live in your house, which is far better than my former residence, so I can't be more pleased."
Hearing his words, Shen Gongbao nodded and said with a smile, "That's fine. If you're neglected, it'll be my fault." Shen Gongbao paused and continued, "Brother, after breakfast, you can get changed and go to Hou Mansion with me. We'll pay a formal visit to Bo Yikao, and then I'll introduce you to him. As for what to do, it depends on your skills." Jiang Ziya was elated to hear that. "Thank you, my brother. Actually, during the years in Mount Kunlun, when my master found that I could hardly achieve any accomplishments in the study of Taoism, he asked me to work hard at state-governing strategies and military tactics. As a result, I'm quite experienced in both aspects." When it came to this, Jiang Ziya was extremely confident.
Seeing this, Shen Gongbao also smiled. He was no good at either the military or administrative affairs, so Jiang Ziya could make up for this deficiency. However, if he wanted to make Jiang Ziya more grateful to him, he needed to use some other means. After breakfast, Shen Gongbao asked someone to send new clothes to Jiang Ziya and then led him to Hou Mansion.
In Hou Mansion, Bo Yikao was discussing saving his father with his younger brother Ji Fa. The time limit of seven years was approaching, however, according to the report of the spy in Zhaoge, King Zhou had no intention to release his father Ji Chang. Besides, no one mentioned this matter in court. Both Bo Yikao and Ji Fa were worried, so they got together to try to find a way out.
At this time, a guard came to report. "My Lords, Imperial Master is at the door and asks to see you. He also brought a man and said that he was the talent recommended for Xiqi." Hearing that, Bo Yikao laughed and said, "The Imperial Master always thinks of our Xiqi and recommends talents to us. Hurry up and invite them in." Ji Fa also followed him with a smile.
After a short while, Shen Gongbao walked in with Jiang Zhiya. Seeing Bo Yikao and Ji Fa, they bowed and said, "Shen Gongbao (Jiang Ziya) greets your highnesses." Bo Yikao and Ji Fa were puzzled to see Jiang Ziya next to Shen Gongbao, as Jiang Ziya looked like 70 years old, not like the previous immortals recommended by Shen Gongbao before.
Though they had doubts, Shen Gongbao personally brought him after all. To be respectful, Bo Yikao said, "Please take a seat." After they were seated, Bo Yikao asked, "Imperial Master, I wonder where did the Taoist Priest you introduced has cultivated and what kind of Magic Skills he has." While Ji Fa was rather curious and looked at Jiang Ziya up and down.
Shen Gongbao smiled. "My Lords, allow me to introduce my friend, with Jiang being his family name and Shang his name, and he styles himself Ziya. I met him in my early years on the way to find a master. Unfortunately, Heaven was not harsh and separated us. Later, I became the disciple of Sage Zhunti while he became the disciple of Sage Jade Pure. We didn't meet until yesterday. Since you value talents, I come specially to recommend him."
Bo Yikao and Ji Fa were surprised to hear that as Shen Gongbao always introduced those who were in the same clan as himself or those individual cultivators who were his friends. But they didn't think that Shen Gongbao would recommend a member of the Clan of Enlightenment to them, much more the disciple of Sage Jade Pure. How could they not be surprised? Seeing Shen Gongbao behave with perfect composure, they two couldn't help admiring his broad mind.
Although they two were mortals, as the sons of Marquis of the West, they were experienced and knowledgeable. They knew that the four tribes, including the Tribe of Humanity, the Clan of Enlightenment, the Tribe of Severity and Western Religious Sect, all preached in the Human Tribe and fought in the open and the dark. Just looking at the Shang Dynasty, then people would know that the Tribe of Severity was dominant while the other three tribes were rare to see. Even if there were any, they were not just any high officials.
Now Shen Gongbao put aside the factionalism and recommended the disciple of the Clan of Enlightenment for Xiqi, which surely surprised Bo Yikao and Ji Fa. Bo Yikao became serious and asked Jiang Ziya, "Taoist Priest Jiang, since you're the disciple of Sage Jade Pure, you must have learned a lot of Teachings of the Jade Pure One. We don't know what skills you have, so would you share some with us, also to increase our knowledge and to allow us to know what post to assign you?"
Hearing the words, Jiang Ziya said, "My lords, I'm ashamed that although I'm lucky to be the disciple of The Sage, as my aptitude is not good, I haven't gotten far in The Way of Celestial Immortality. I've learned some magic arts, but am not so good as my brother, Shen Gongbao. Therefore, I'd better not show myself up. However, when I was in Mount Kunlun, I studied state-governing strategies and military tactics on my own, and had the honor to read the military book Mysterious Lady of the Nine Heavens gave to Xuanyuan the Yellow Emperor, from which I benefited a lot."
Both Bo Yikao and Ji Fa were shocked by what Jiang Ziya had said. They did not expect that Jiang Ziya would have the honor to read the military book Mysterious Lady of the Nine Heavens gave to Xuanyuan the Yellow Emperor. One knows that no one had seen the military book since Xuanyuan the Yellow Emperor read it but Jiang Ziya did. However, thinking it over, it made sense. Guang Chengzi was once the teacher of Xuanyuan, so he kept a copy of the military book. Later, Jiang Ziya became his junior, so Guang Chengzi gave it to Jiang Ziya.
Seeing Jiang Ziya was so talented, Bo Yikao finally said after thinking for a long time, "Since Taoist Priest Jiang Daochang has much knowledge about military tactics, then I shall title you the Ordinary Grand Master and allow you to participate in court. What do you think?" Although Jiang Ziya was recommended by Shen Gongbao, and the disciple of The Sage, he had no contributions to Xiqi. As a result, it was inappropriate to rashly give him a high position. Giving him the Ordinary Grand Master was already an exception.
Jiang Ziya was elated to hear it, as the Ordinary Grand Master was one rank higher than the Primary Grand Master he wanted to be. But Shen Gongbao said, "My lord, his talent is competent in managing a state, an Ordinary Grand Master is not comparable. For my sake, please assign an important position, and I'll be grateful." What Shen Gongbao said surprised all of them.
Chapter 277: Three Pure Ones?
Bo Yikao and Ji Fa were surprised. Shen Gongbao had made great achievements since he became an official in Xiqi, but he never asked for anything. However, today he asked them for a favor for a friend who was taught by a different master, which was unexpected of him. The same goes for Jiang Ziya. The Ordinary Grand Master was a very good post for him, but Shen Gongbao actually asked the two princes to give him a higher position. That really surprised Jiang Ziya.
Seeing this, Ji Fa whispered to Bo Yikao. "Big brother, Jiang Ziya is the disciple of The Sage and comes on behalf of the Clan of Enlightenment, so we'd better consider the feelings of both the Clan of Enlightenment and The Sage. Moreover, now that the Imperial Master is interceding for him, so it's not a good idea to refuse. You'd better raise his post, and it'll satisfy both sides."
Bo Yikao agreed with Ji Fa's words, he nodded and said, "Well, in this case, I confer Taoist Priest Jiang as the Senior Grand Master." Jiang Ziya was overjoyed when he heard Bo Yikao's words and Shen Gongbao also nodded with satisfaction. Looking at Jiang Ziya's grateful eyes, Shen Gongbao knew that he had achieved what he wanted. Though some officials in Xiqi were disagreeable for Jiang Ziya to be offered such a high post, they said nothing more. Bo Yikao offered Jiang Ziya a mansion, so Jiang Ziya naturally moved out from Shen Gongbao's Imperial Master Mansion. His mansion was next to the Imperial Master Mansion, it was also a good thing as it made it easier for both to communicate with each other.
Jiang Ziya's wife was also delighted. Luckily, she followed the instruction left by the immortal, otherwise, she would not be enjoying the splendor and wealth now. It's only been a few months after they fled from Zhaoge to Xiqi, Jiang Ziya became the Senior Grand Master, which was better than the Primary Grand Master he once was in Zhaoge. Besides, he had such a good friend as the Imperial Master Shen Gongbao, thus it would be possible for Jiang Ziya to be conferred a rank of nobility and become a minister in the future.
It had to be said that Jiang Ziya was indeed a master in handling state affairs. It took him only a short period of two or three months to change the opinions of the officials from the initial distrust to fully trusting in him. Jiang Ziya put forward many constructive opinions on governing Xiqi and solved a lot of difficulties for Xiqi, which made Bo Yikao and Ji Fa trust him more and be grateful to Shen Gongbao for recommending such a talent for Xiqi as well. ···
In Mount Shouyang, Laozi and Honored Lord of the Origin sat facing each other on the cushions without any words. After a long time, Honoured Lord of the Origin said, "Brother, what are Zhunti and Jieyin playing at? The Western Religious Sect has already established a firm foothold in Xiqi, but they allow Shen Gongbao to recommend my disciple Jiang Ziya to Xiqi and help him obtain a good post. That's not their style."
Laozi opened his eyes and lightly said, "It's simple. The will of Heaven shows that the Shang will perish but Zhou will prosper, and it may refer to Xiqi. However, they must confront the Tribe of Severity established by Tongtian before destroying the Shang. By virtue of the Western Religious Sect's own power, they are no match for the Tribe of Severity. Thus, they ask Shen Gongbao to recommend Jiang Ziya to do you a favor."
Honored Lord of the Origin's face slightly changed when hearing Sect Leader Tongtian. The God Deification Ceremony this time mainly focused on the four religions and it was not an easy task to select 365 Gods for the Investiture of the Gods. If all disciples of the three religions were selected, that would be enough. However, the four Sages including Laozi, Honoured Lord of the Origin, Zhunti, and Jieyin would not be hardhearted enough to send all their disciples on the Investiture of the Gods, otherwise, their Taoism lineages would end.
If they did not want their own disciples to be on the list, then they could only try to make the disciples of other religions be on the list instead. Among the four religions, the Tribe of Severity was the strongest. If the other three religions began to fight among themselves, the Tribe of Severity would be at an advantage. Under such circumstances, the best way was to combine the efforts of the three religions together to fight against the Tribe of Severity, as any one of the three religions could not resist the Tribe of Severity by virtue of their own power.
However, Honored Lord of the Origin still had doubts. Regardless of whether the Western Religious Sect was playing at something, the name of Three Pure Ones was enough to make him hesitate. Once the war started, the name of Three Pure Ones would no longer exist. This was what worried both Honoured Lord of the Origin and Laozi.
Honored Lord of the Origin was silent for a long time before he finally replied, "Brother, in this case, what should we do now? Ziya is an official of Xiqi, if Xiqi sends armed forces to suppress the Shang and King Zhou, we the Clan of Enlightenment will inevitably be confronted with the Tribe of Severity. What should we do then? Besides, once the war starts, the disciples of both parties will suffer. By that time, the name of Three Pure Ones will probably no longer exist."
After hearing his words, Laozi's dull look finally changed. After a long time, Laozi sighed and said, "This is the will of God, and there's nothing we can do about it. Since the Tribe of Severity of Tongtian is assisting the Shang Dynasty, it's impossible to ask him to stay out of this. However, the Battle of Gods Investiture is inevitable, thus we can only take one step at a time, while guarding against the Western Religious Sect so as not to be made use by them."
In Jadeite Palace, Sect Leader Tongtian was calm and steadfast. He looked at Mount Shouyang and murmured. "Big brother, second brother···" Sect Leader Tongtian was a Sage, so he surely knew both Shen Gongbao and Jiang Ziya were officials in Xiqi. The will of Heaven showed that Shang would fall while Zhou would revitalize, and the Zhou might refer to Xiqi. With the assistance of Shen Gongbao and Jiang Ziya, Xiqi had greatly strengthened. The Battle of Gods Investiture would begin anytime soon. Now that Shen Gongbao recommended Jiang Ziya as an official in Xiqiao, on the surface, he did so because of their fellowship while Sect Leader Tongtian understood the key point. It was obvious that the Western Religious Sect tried to draw the Clan of Enlightenment over to their side so as to fight against the Tribe of Severity. However, Honored Lord of the Origin made no response, which obviously meant that he tacitly approved. This made Tongtian bitterly disappointed.
Would their brotherhood which lasted thousands of years come to an end? At the thought of this, Sect Leader Tongtian couldn't help feeling sad because he never thought of fighting against the other two sects. His goal had always been the Western Religious Sect. There were not many disciples in the Western Religious Sect, but there were still more than one or two hundred. If he could destroy the Western Religious Sect, the vacancies of Lord Gods on Investiture of the Gods would be half filled.
In addition, the remaining vacancies on Investiture of the Gods would be filled with some humans and individual cultivators, and then the three religions would be safe. Unfortunately, Sect Leader Tongtian had the intention, but Laozi and Honored Lord of the Origin did not think so. What made Sect Leader Tongtian really sad was that Laozi and Honored Lord of the Origin might have thought about it this way, but they were reluctant to do so.
Although the three religions would safely survive the calamity of the God Deification Ceremony, there were no benefits for the other two religions as the Tribe of Severity would still be strong. Even if Shang fell while Zhou revitalized, the Tribe of Severity would still be dominating. Moreover, without the Western Religious Sect, the other two religions would be less likely to compete with the Tribe of Severity, which was the concern of Laozi and Honored Lord of the Origin.
When their cultivations reached such realms, living endlessly had no attraction to them. The immortals could only pursue higher and stronger realms. However, after being in the realm of The Sage, they could only rely on Luck to rapidly improve their strength. The fundamental cause was to strive for Luck but not for factional disputes.
Only with stronger luck, could The Sages improve their strength faster. In addition, Minghe had become the Rakshasa, which also greatly stimulated all Sages to strive for the Luck more firmly. It seemed that Minghe did not strive for the Luck, however, his Luck was far more than that of all Sages. This was one reason why Minghe made such rapid progress. As Minghe controlled the Blood Sea, the Nether World, the Ashura tribe and the Religion of Asura, his luck was very strong. However, all Sages still remembered that although the Holy Land of Human Tribe had hidden from the world, the Selfcentric Separation of Minghe remained the ancestor of Martial Arts of the Human Tribe, who was enshrined and worshipped by the Human Tribe for generations and enjoyed 30 percent of the Luck of the Human Tribe. Though it declined, Minghe's Luck was still horrifying and unreachable for all Sages.
The most unpleasant thing for all Sages was that even if they wanted to weaken Minghe's Luck, it was not easy. As for the Blood Sea, the Ashura tribe and the Religion of Asura, they had no way to intervene. In addition, though Houtu was in the Nether World, Minghe had the Book of Life and Death and the Judge Pen which took charge of the Nether World. Above all, as the Nether World was an important place in Untainted Land, no one dared to fight there. Therefore, all Sages had to be overtly cautious.
Now the only way was to make an issue out of the Luck of the Human Tribe. The 30 percents of luck of the Human Tribe Minghe's Selfcentric Separation occupied had declined. Although it was not much, only one or two points at best (with the Luck of the Human Tribe being counted as one hundred, 30 percents equal to 30 points), these one or two points would fall on sect Leader Tongtian and the Tribe of Severity.
Chapter 278: Seven-year Period
The Shang Dynasty only respected Tribe of Severity. This made the Luck of Tribe of Severity increased a lot, and also made Tongtian Sect Leader gain a bit of luck from Minghe. Although Tongtian Sect Leader did not care, Laozi, Honored Lord of the Origin, Jieyin and Zhunti already had some ideas. The Battle of luck was always the main concern for all Sages. The sudden increase in the strength of Minghe had put all Sages under tremendous pressure, so they were extremely eager to improve their power, and Luck was the best help.
Although Untainted Land was large, luck was limited, and some of them were still unavailable to all Sages, such as the Luck of Minghe's Blood Sea, Ashura tribe, Ashura tribe, and so on. Currently, the one who owned the most Luck among all Sages might be Tongtian Sect Leader. With the help of Luck and the unbreakable God-killing Sword Formation, he overpowered all Sages.
Although Laozi, Honored Lord of the Origin and Tongtian Sect Leader were brothers, they had different temperaments, and so were the doctrines of the three religion. Last time, the sneak attack on Minghe, Laozi and Honored Lord of the Origin invited not only Houtu and Goddess Nvywa, but also one of the Three Pure Ones, Tongtian. Unfortunately, Tongtian also chose to decline the invitation like Goddess Nvywa.
This also worsened their relationship, and the Battle of Gods Investiture pushed the relationship of the three people to the edge. Clan of Enlightenment was settled in Xiqi, and helped Xiqi together with Western Religious Sect, which made Tongtian Sect Leader felt bitterly disappointed. Though no one was to blame in this matter, it made Tongtian heartbroken just thinking of their brotherhood during old times.
After the pain subsided, Tongtian Sect Leader had made up his mind to accept it. It was not only for him but also for the whole Tribe of Severity. For the future of his tens of thousands of disciples, he had to fight. Even if he had to fight against the other four Sages, he, Tongtian Sect Leader have nothing to be afraid of. Minghe could make it and so could he.
How time flew by. In a blink of the eye, it was another year. The cold winter has passed and spring came. Although there was still a bit of chill, in the new year, people began their own busy lives in plowing, sowing and everything to prepare for the new year. Without the sacrifice of the moment, there was no gain in the future.
In the Xiqi Hou mansion, they were also busy preparing. Now that the seven-year period has passed, but they did not see any signs of release of the Marquis of the West Ji Chang. Both Bo Yikao and Ji Fa naturally felt anxious. Therefore, they convened the Chief Ministers to plot how to rescue Ji Chang. Of course, the state preceptor Shen Gongbao and Senior Grand Master Jiang Ziya were naturally included.
Bo Yikao looked at all the people present and said, "Now that my father has been trapped in Zhaoge for seven years, but there are no signs of him being released. I am very worried. I am here today to discuss with all of you about how to rescue my father. Any suggestions?" To rescue Ji Chang, there must be a detailed plan to ensure they not only save Ji Chang but also avoid being accused of rebellion. It was necessary to take care of the situation for these two issues.
Hearing this, people began to discuss it. Jiang Ziya thought about it for a while, and said, "Elder Childe, if you want to save the duke, it's better to let King Zhou set him free. At present, in Zhaoge City, King Zhou is racketing about treachery. In order to rescue the Marquis, you may turn to Fei Zhong and You Hun for help with bribes. "Although Fei Zhong and You Hun are crafty, King Zhou trust them. If both of them were to speak to King Zhou, our hope of successfully saving the duke will be greater. In addition, we can also seek help from Assistant to Counselor-in-chief Bi Gan in getting him to persuade King Zhou to release the duke. This way, we can be more certain. "
Hearing that, both Bo Yikao and Ji Fa thought it was sensible. Other people also agreed to it. Bo Yikao patted the table and said, "Okay, as Dafu(a senior official in feudal China) Jiang said, this time, I will go there in person. I shall never give up till I succeed. As for the affairs of the imperial court, it will be entirely handed over to my younger brother. I give my thanks for the aid to my younger brother."
Hearing that, Ji Fa stood up and said, "Brother, you can't do this. You are the eldest son of our father, the successor of Xiqi. You should not go for Zhaoge alone. Nowadays, King Zhou is superfluous with fatuity and you might be detained by him. It's better for me to go to Zhaoge to save our father on behalf of you, and you should stay here to protect Xiqi. This will be the best option."
Hearing this, San Yisheng and others also tried to discourage Bo Yikao. After all, Bo Yikao was the eldest son of Marquis of the West and the first successor of Xiqi. If he failed to save Marquis of the West Ji Chang and had an accident, it would for sure cause turmoil in Xiqi, while Ji Fa's suggestion appeared much more reasonable. It could not only save Ji Chang but also ensured Bo Yikao's safety. Afterall, Ji Fa was the second son, even if he was detained, it would not change the fate of Xiqi.
However, Bo Yikao was a kind and tender man, he would not let his younger brother take risks. He said, "I appreciate your kindness, but I have to go to Zhaoge this time. Only my visit can convince King Zhou that we Xiqi are sincere to pay tribute to Shang. I will take three ancestral treasures to King Zhou, hoping this could help save our father."
When everyone saw that Bo Yikao was so determined and what he said was reasonable, it was not good to dissuade him. When Shen Gongbao saw this, he learned that the opportunity had come. Then he began to say, "Since Elder child has decided to go to Zhaoge to make atonement for your father, I'd like to go with you. It would be extremely dangerous to go to Zhaoge alone. As I have some magic arts, I can protect you."
When everyone heard this, they were pleased. They all knew Shen Gongbao's Magic Skills. If he could make the trip together with Bo Yikao, it surely could get them assured. At this time, San Yisheng also said, "For this visit to Zhaoge, the meeting with all the ministers would be not avoided. I'd like to go with young master to save the Duke. "
Bo Yikao rejoiced and said, "Very good. In the company with state teacher and Dafu San, we will be certain to save my father. Since it is so, Dafu San, please get the three treasures ready, as well as some more gold, silver and jewelry. As for the affairs of the imperial court, I would have to rely on my younger brother and the rest of the ministers." Hearing this, all obeyed the order.
Within a few days, everything was ready. Bo Yikao and his team set off. There were hundreds of elite soldiers and a few carts of treasures accompanying. The team marched towards Zhaoge. Before that, Shen Gongbao had already gone one step ahead to Zhaoge and asked for news, to do some preparations in advance. After all, for him, no mistake was allowed during this trip.
In the hidden room of Zhaoge Palace, King Zhou sat on top of the stone platform and hung a black flag on top of his head. He gathered endless the Killing Intent of Heaven and Earth to supply him for cultivation. Suddenly, a figure appeared in the hidden room, and King Zhou stopped his cultivation immediately. He came off the stone platform and kneeled,"Greetings Ancestor. I did not know that you were coming. Do you have new instructions for me?"
Although Wu Zhiqi was in the state of a human being, he could never forget his past lives as a demon. Therefore, he always claimed to be a demon, moreover, till now he could not truly be considered a human. Acquired Origin of Shura, his blood linkages had already started to transform into Ashura tribe. When he fully condenses the truth body of Shura, he cannot be regarded as a human, but a true Ashura tribe.
The person coming here was just Minghe. Minghe sat on top of the stone platform and looked at King Zhou, said, "Wu Zhiqi, it seems that your practice went smoothly recently. With the help of Shura Flag and Human Tribe Luck, as well as the endless turbulence created by Cultivation Tribulation of Heaven and Earth, your cultivation is promoting very fast. If you continue at this speed, it will not be long before you are able to make a break-through and reach Primordial Unity Golden Immortal Realm. Alright, you may stand up and reply."
King Zhou said, " That's all thanks to you. If I haven't got that Origin of Shura vouchsafed by you, my cultivation cannot progress so fast. I owe much to you. If I hear the order from you, I will definitely serve you to death, to express my gratitude for your kindness of giving me another life." Now he was the Human Sovereign, but he was very clear about everything how it happened.
Hearing that, Minghe was very satisfied with the attitude of King Zhou. He appreciated such kind of people. Whoever suits his actions to the times is a real hero. King Zhou was able to place his position correctly, which did not waste the cultivation Minghe gave him. As long as he did not betray him, Minghe would not be stingy with his reward. "Wu Zhiqi, you understand the times very well. It's very good. Have you settled the thing I commanded you to?"
King Zhou replied respectfully," What you commanded has been completed. Although Ji Chang was imprisoned, he did not suffer. I also have him take the elixir for longevity. As for the Nine-Tailed Fox, I did not bother with her either. It was only that this goblin has become more cruel. Do I need to warn him?"
Chapter 279: Bo Yikao Saving His Father
After hearing that, King Zhou nodded. The Nine-Tailed Fox was just signing her death warrant. How dare she plot against his wife and children! Though he had been a demon in his previous life, he was now a human being who had feelings, especially about Queen Jiang. The Nine-Tailed Fox had stabbed Jiang in the back, but King Zhou was so sly that he had created a substitute for the real one, and saved Queen Jiang.
As for King Zhou's two sons, they had been saved by people of the Clan of Enlightenment. King Zhou was worried but he could do nothing about it. Since his two sons were safe, he was at ease. But thinking of one thing, King Zhou could not help hesitating for a long time. Finally, he asked, "Ancestor, it's getting harder and harder for me to control the incarnation. Do you have any suggestions?"
At first, when Minghe taught King Zhou the technique of the Incarnation, King Zhou had mixed a drop of his Blood of Essence with some materials given by Minghe and refined the Incarnation, which now was the fatuous and tyrannical King Zhou. But it was the Incarnation which had saved him. King Zhou was now really a bit scared to think of it. It didn't occur to him that the Sage would throw away his status to plot against him. Hearing that, Minghe said, "Your incarnation was broken because of Zhunti's trap. But the incarnation will be useful when the moment comes. I'll teach you another method to temporarily control the Incarnation. When you're in need, you can control the incarnation on the temporary basis." After saying that, Minghe taught a spell to King Zhou.
Minghe continued to say, "Before long, Bo Yikao will come to Zhaoge from Xiqi for saving his father. At that time, you'll need to control the Incarnation temporarily. You must make sure the father and the son can both safely go back to Xiqi so as not to ruin my plan. Understand?" King Zhou was confused, yet he agreed.
After giving King Zhou instructions, Minghe was about to leave. Before going, Minghe swung his arms and a fruit flew to King Zhou. King Zhou caught it immediately. Minghe said without turning around, "It's a ginseng. It can help you to achieve the breakthrough of the Primordial Unity Golden Immortal," and he went into the void.
King Zhou looked at the ginseng in his hand, and his face lighted. With it, he could expect to achieve the safe of the Primordial Unity Golden Immortal soon. When he was the Red- Bottomed Horse Monkey in his previous life, he had been the Sacred Demon with the cultivation of the Zenith Heaven Golden Immortal. However, it was in the past. He was not as ambitious as others and all he wanted was to be safe during his whole life. Now he was in the Cultivation Tribulation without any route of retreat, so the only thing he could do was to follow Minghe. At least so far it had been safe to follow him.
Bo Yikao had been heading east, and he was exhausted from the long travel. Finally, he arrived in Zhaoge. Then they asked to meet King Zhou to atone for his father's crime. However, it was a shame that King Zhou seldom took notice of the state affairs. So Bo Yikao naturally could not meet King Zhou. Then he first turned to Bi Gan, the assistant to Counselor-in-chief. Bi Gan was touched by Bo Yikao's filial piety and helped him to write a report to King Zhou.
At the same time, Shen Gongbao and San Yisheng were busy running about bribing officers of Zhaoge, especially Fei Zhong and You Hun. San Yisheng lured them with lots of gold silver and jewelry for making them speak up for the Marquis of the West. The two of them were greedy and naturally gave their word. As for the consequence of releasing Ji Chang, they heed little attention to it. When the day of meeting King Zhou came, Bo Yikao offered three valuable treasures of Xiqi. The first one was the Qixiang Carriage. It was said that this treasure had been left over when Xuanyuan the Yellow Emperor defeated Chi You. There were gears set in the carriage so that it could move without the force of oxen and horses. The second one was the Sober Felt. If people were drunk, it would not take a long time to dispel the effects of alcohol if they sat on the felt. The third one was the White Face Monkey, which was rare because it could sing and dance.
King Zhou was very happy to get the three treasures. With persuasion from his civil and military official, he decided to set Ji Chang free. Some people in the court thought it was unusual, but everything had been settled. In addition, they could not disappoint King Zhou. If King Zhou got angry, they might be killed at that time.
The Marquis of the West Ji Chang had been released by King Zhou, and Bo Yikao was in ecstasy. In case King Zhou going back on his word, Bo Yikao asked Shen Gongbao to secretly take Ji Chang to Xiqi. As for himself, San Yisheng, and other people, they would go back to Xiqi slowly. This way, no one would find out that the Marquis of the West Ji Chang was not travelling as part of the group. At first, Ji Chang absolutely rejected, but Bo Yikao insisted on it persistently, using his death as the last card. Ji Chang could not refuse. Using the Underground-walking Skill, Shen Gongbao sent Ji Chang to Xiqi. He had not delayed at all on the whole way. After settling Ji Chang, he needed to go back to meet Bo Yikao. If Bo Yikao had an accident, everything that he had done before would be useless.
However, walls have ears and the news that the Marquis of the West had gone back to Xiqi came through. King Zhou got the message and was furious. Some people thought that the Marquis of the West did it for the purpose of rebellion. So King Zhou dispatched an army to arrest Bo Yikao who was on his way to Xiqi. Hearing this, all of them fled hurriedly to Xiqi.
Unfortunately, King Zhou's army caught Bo Yikao and other people. Seeing the surrounding Shang army, Bo Yikao was in despair. However, he did not regret. At least he had saved his father Ji Chang and sent him back to Zhaoge safely. Bo Yikao would die without anything to regret if he could exchange his life for his father's life. Since there was no chance to survive, Bo Yikao wanted to take his sword to kill himself in order to avoid being caught by King Zhou.
··· Not far from the place where Bo Yikao was trapped, a Taoist in black and a fairy in white were standing at the top of the cliff, looking down at everything. The Taoist in black robe said, "It's the time for you and Bo Yikao to renew your acquaintance. Now Bo Yikao is in danger, and you should save him. What's more, don't forget what I have told you."
The fairy in white hearing what the Taoist said, silently nodded. Seeing Bo Yikao in trouble, her ravishing face took on a worried look. Since the Taoist had allowed, she naturally was eager to help Bo Yikao. She would never forget the reminder from the Taoist. Now everything that she had owned was given by the Taoist. Since he could give her everything, he could naturally take it back.
In such a crisis, a massive burst of wind blew, and people could barely keep their eyes open. When the wind had fallen, the Shang army suddenly found that Bo Yikao and other people disappeared. In desperation, they could only search everywhere. But their efforts doomed to be in vain. Bo Yikao and other people had already reached Xiqi. When Bo Yikao returned back to his mind, he suddenly found that he had gotten rid of the Shang army and was in Xiqi. Seeing the nearby fairy in white, Bo Yikao wanted to show his gratitude. It must be her who had made the strong wind and saved them from danger.
However, when Bo Yikao distinguished who the fairy was, he was suddenly stunned. This face had been in his dream for many times, but after awakening, he could only be filled with disappointment. It never occurred to him that he could really see this face again. So he could not believe what he had seen. Because the person whom he was so concerned about was in Zhaoge, and had been regarded as the evil queen everyone hated.
Chapter 280: The Appearance of Daji
Bo Yikao felt a mixture of delight and worry when he saw the girl in front of him. He hoped she was Daji as he worried about her day and night, and he also hoped she was not Daji, because Daji was now the demon queen whom everyone hated, and she also invited the disturbances and chaos of Shang Dynasty. With a mixed feeling, looking at the girl, he asked, "Is it you? Daji."
The instant when Daji saw Bo Yikao, her bright eyes brimmed with tears. Though years had passed since her master saved her and guided her to learn the Way of Celestial Immortality. But her mind was always filled with the man who was standing right in front of her. Bo Yikao's words threw her into fits of sobbing. "It's me, Yikao. I'm back." She answered.
Disbelief was seen in Bo Yikao's eyes after hearing what Su Daji said. There was no any difference between this Su Daji in front of him and that Su Daji he knew long ago, and she absolutely did not look like the demon queen described in rumors. He could tell it at the moment she finished speaking, though there wasonly one sentence. However, all of this was unbelievable.
Not only Bo Yikao but also San Yisheng and all of the soldiers were shocked at the sight of her. They never thought that the person saved them was Su Daji, the demon queen reviled by everybody. But it was also very curious. If the person in front of them was really the demon queen of Zhaoge, why she bothered to come to save them? Was it that she still cared about her past affection with Bo Yikao?
Bo Yikao rushed forward and took Su Daji's slim hands. Doubtfully, he asked, "Daji, haven't you been sent to Zhaoge by your father? How can you be here to save me? Moreover, where did you learn all these magic arts? I have not heard you that you learned magic arts before." With Daji right in front him, he had countless questions to ask.
Daji withdrew her hand, wiping away her tears. Then,she smiled. "This was all fate. When my father sent me to Zhaoge, we came across a Nine-Tailed Fox on the way there. She wanted to kill me when I was staying at the En Prefecture posthouse. Fortunately, an immortal saved me. That fox became my appearance and went to Zhaoge for me. So I followed the immortal and learned Taoism. He calculated that you were in trouble today, and therefore sent me here to save you, helping you to pass the crisis."
Hearing that, Bo Yikao rejoiced and said, "I never thought you got such a fate. Look at what you did. Your power is no less powerful than our master of Xiqi. This is incredible." She was indeed not less powerful than Shen Gongbao. Shen Gongbao had only achieved the cultivation of Primordial Unity Black Immortal, yet Daji was already a Golden Immortal. Though her cultivation wasn't gained through her own efforts.
San Yisheng was also shocked at such secret news. It never came to him that the demon queen that captivated King Zhou was actually a Nine-Tailed Fox. No wonder Zhaoge was now in such chaos. No one had thought that the real Su Daji in the front who used to be so weak could get the blessing of the fate. Life was really capricious.
Bo Yikao and Su Daji had been apart for such a long time and had so many things to share with each other as they were together again. San Yisheng intentionally kept them for distance and followed them quietly. They were now heading towards Xiqi. As they had already crossed the border, they were no longer worried about King Zhou's soldiers. Moreover, they were not threatened now that Su Daji was so powerful now.
Shen Gongbao also arrived in a hurry by that time. Seeing that Bo Yikao was safe and sound, Shen Gongbo was assured. Yet, he was surprised to see Su Daji being together with Bo Yikao. Not that he doubted her true identity, but that he never thought Su Daji could achieve such a high cultivation. She was even more powerful than himself. Su Daji's fairy spirit was so pure that could not be cultivated by demons.
Zhunti had informed Shen Gongbao about God Deification Ceremony before. Besides, he was also a disciple of Western Religious Sect, so he naturally knew that the four religious sects all had their own arrangements in this Cultivation Tribulation. However, Su Daji just came out from nowhere with such a strong power. She was not like any of the men from four religious sects. She herself even had no idea about the true identity of the man saved her before. That was really strange.
However, as Su Daiji had a special relationship with Bo Yikao, Shen Gongbao kept quiet about this. At least, Su Daji showed no ill intention to Bo Yikao at present. Though there were indeed some doubtful details, Shen Gongbao decided to wait until he returned to Xiqi. Then he would find a chance to go back to Square Mountain and report the whole thing to his master Zhunti the Sage.
Now that Bo Yikao had come back safe and sound, Ji Chang was relieved. He had been worried about him since he heard that King Zhou had sent men to arrest him. Unexpectedly, he saw the real Su Daji following him and knew the surprising news that the demon queen in Zhaoge was actually a Nine- Tailed Fox.
Naturally, someone still doubted Su Daji's identity. So Ji Chang secretly asked Su Daji's parents to come for the verification of Su Daji. At the sight of her parents, Su Daji burst into tears. Su Hu and his wife were also filled with all sorts of emotions to see Su Daji. This made Ji Chang rest assured, as this at least proved that the girl standing right in front of them was exactly the one Bo Yikao knew years ago.
In the backyard garden of Hou, Bo Yikao and Su Daji were enjoying the beautiful flowers. Looking at Su Daji's beautiful face, Bo Yikao said a bit apologetically, "Daji, I need to apologize for my family. It wasn't that they didn't trust you, but the whole thing was unbelievable to them. I wish you can forgive them."
Su Daji smiled, and said, "It's not their fault. How could I blame them." Suddenly, something struck Su Daji. She took out a Jade Slip and said, "Look, Yikao, I'm so happy meeting you again that I almost forget this. The immortal said that you had the fate of Zi Wei Emperor, so he asked me to bring you this Zi Wei Emperor Slip for you to cultivate. If you work hard in this, you will finally realize the Way of Celestial Immortality." Seeing that, Bo Yikao was very surprised. He didn't expect that the immortal saved Su Daji even also prepared cultivation transforming exercises for him. At the instant when Bo Yikao took the Jade Slip, a flash of purple light merged into his head, right between his two eyebrows. After Bo Yikao came to himself, Su Daji found something different about him. He had now a bit emperor aura with his gentle and scholarly character.
In the Holy Square Mountain, Jieyin and Zhunti were staring towards Xiqi. Both of them were deeply worried. After a long time, Zhunti broke the silence and asked, "Brother, who does this Su Daji work for? I wonder what kind of man was capable of making a Golden Immortal in such a few years. He must have great expertise. Now only our Western Religious Sect and the Clan of Enlightenment have chess pieces in Xiqi, while Laozi, Goddess Nvywa or Houtu have no any actions, as well as that Minghe."
After a long while, Jie yin said with bitterness, "She has true feelings for Bo Yikao, yet we don't know whether she is manipulated to do something by the person who saved her. We must be more careful. Laozi hasn't moved until now, but I know he won't be our enemy. Goddess Nvywa and Houtu are not likely to meddle in the Cultivation Tribulation this time. It's Minghe that I'm worried about."
Hearing that, Zhunti also felt upset. The four sages had offended Minghe before, so he was very likely to take revenge for this time. Yet, until now, only his three disciples had shown signs of movement, and nothing was heard from Minghe. That really worried them. The quieter Minghe was, the more nervous they would become.
Suddenly, Zhunti raised up his head, looked at Taoist Jieyin, and said with doubt, "Brother, do you think it's possible that Su Daji is manipulated by Minghe? If it is, then I am confused about his intention. His disciples are now in the realm of Shang Dynasty. How would useful would it be to send one Su Daji here? Is it to spy on us?
However, Su Daji has true feelings for Bo Yikao. She won't hurt Bo Yikao unless she is somehow controlled by Minghe. Yet, that isn't sound like what Minghe usually does. He won't use such a means to serve his end. Besides, he never needs to make such a trouble if he really wants to know something from us. Then what is his real intention?" Zhunti became more doubtful about his guessings. Jieyin was in a graver mood after hearing what he said. Finally, Jieyin sighed, "No matter how we must remind Shen Gongbao to be more cautious about Su Daji. No matter whom she was sent by, we can easily deal with her as long as we know her intention. However, Su Daji holds a special position in Bo Yikao's heart, which might be either a blessing or a curse to us."