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Volume 6 Chapter 1-Prepare to Attack
Translated by: Demenious, GX
Edited by: Challi, Vanagandr, Octavian, Phirex, Kenneth, IT
Consumed by: IT
In order to save myself some trouble, I didn’t tell him about the Holy Dragon Knight Corps when I returned to the Beastman country at that time, but now I said, “I managed to verify it recently, the Dragon Empire has a very secretive corps, I don’t think you are aware of.”
The beast emperor stared at me with a blank face, “Secret corps? What secret corps?”
I sunk my voice, “The Holy Dragon Knight Corps. It’s a secret corps composed of only 17 people.”
“A Holy Dragon Knight Corps of only 17 men, what can it accomplish? Even if all of them are Dragon Knights, it’s only capable of increasing the strength of the Dragon Empire by a little.”, exclaimed the beast emperor.
I told him word by word, “They are not composed by Dragon Knights, but Dragon Generals.”
“What!? Dragon Generals! Ah, are you saying there are 17 more Dragon Generals other than their empire’s ‘Three Great Marshals’?” I nodded seriously.
The Beast Emperor glared with widened eyes, “Seventeen Dragon Generals…… Seventeen Dragon Generals…… No, this is impossible, do you know what kind of immense destructive power a Dragon General has? They can easily annihilate a thousand of our elite armies alone. If the Dragon Empire was so powerful, why haven’t they eliminated us and the Demon Clan?”
I smiled slightly, and said, “That is why I said that this secret will allow us to attack the Demon Clan with ease. Why hasn’t the Dragon Empire eliminated the Demon Clan and us? There is a reason; the human’s ancestors once received a commandment from their God on a fortuitous occasion. God then declared that every living thing has the right to live. He will not allow them to use their full strength and upset the balance of the land. If they do, they will receive divine retribution. The God’s commandment equals an absolute decree for humans, no one dares to disobey. Do you realize now? As a result, the Dragon Empire rarely sends troops to attack the Demon Clan and us, they were always passively defending, and because of this we were able to hold a small part of the land in a corner.”
The beast emperor’s eyes widened, “So you are implying, that even if we were to fight the Demon Clan, the Dragon Empire will not take advantage of our vulnerability during our war and launch a sneak attack.”
I nodded and said, “Yes, this is what I am implying. Even if they were to launch a sneak attack, they will not overdo it and will surely leave us some leeway in any case. The Demon Clan is indeed stronger than us, but if I were the marshal of the Dragon Empire, I would at most send some troops to drag down the Demon Clan, and the best method would be to wait and see.”
At this moment, the Beast Emperor was already influenced by my intense confidence, his eyes shone two rays of cold glow, “How do you plan to execute it? You must know that even without the participation of the Dragon Empire, the Demon Clan alone will not be an easy opponent.”
“I’m aware of this, here is my plan: my goal is not to attack the Demon Clan directly, but to launch a sneak attack. After all, the Demons and Beasts are on a collaborative relationship, we mustn’t totally ruin our relationship with the Demon Clan, we just need to show our strength and let them know that the Beastmen shouldn’t be bullied at will.”
The Beast Emperor said, “Speak in detail. What’s your plan?”
I faintly smiled and took out a map, because the table was destroyed, I spread it on the floor, and pointed at a long narrow zone at the border between the Demon and Beastman race, I said. “Father emperor, look here.”
The Beast Emperor also squatted down and replied, “En, this is the Dunder province of the Demon Clan, there is a part that borders on the Chima’s(Cheetahmen’s) habitat- Fengyan territory, and there is another part that is near the Mayuk’s (Bearman’s) habitat- Fuwen territory. This province of the Demon Clan has a close relationship with these two territories of ours, they often conduct trades, so it’s very populous and affluent, it became the largest trading province of the Demon Clan.”
I nodded and said, “The Dunder province has a very long border that connects to our two territories, and it’s also an inland region, it does not have to fear the attack of the Dragon Empire, that’s also why it’s province is very prosperous, and there aren’t many garrisons. What I’m thinking about doing is to use our men to occupy the entire Dunder province in the shortest possible amount of time, and engulf all their goods and supplies, look over here.”
I pointed at a dot inside the Dunder province, “This is the Dunder province’s capital city Stanla. I asked about it, it’s a very large city and it’s the largest business center of the Demon Clan. Once we’ve occupied it, we could defend that city obstinately and then negotiate with the Demon Clan. Because the entire Dunder province would have fallen into our hands, we can then garrison some of our troops in the cities surrounding the Stanla city, forming power in a corner. We wouldn’t need to supply ourselves, I believe just the supplies from the loots should be enough to support the army. As long as we are able to defend it for a period of time, and because the Demon Clan will surely not give up such a prosperous province, by that time, I shall let them know that we the Beastman Country are not so easily bullied.
The Beast Emperor stood up and walked back and forth in the Imperial Study room. After half an hour, he stopped and asked solemnly, “Are you really completely confident about this? What if the Demon Clan decides to dispatch a large forces of armies to attack our other territory when we are attacking the Dunder province?”
“I thought about this too, and in order to prevent this situation from happening, I hope that you can gather all of the armed forces from each territory of our country, station them at the few territories that border the Demon Clan. I believe that if the Demon Emperor does not take care of our invasion, they wouldn’t risk bringing a lone army to attack our inland.”
The Beast Emperor bitterly smiled and said, “Your thoughts are too simple, we just sacrificed an army of 3 hundred thousand men in the war against the Dragon Empire. Will those tribe chiefs be willing to send more troops to help us attack the Demon Clan? Those scoundrels would only take cover in their territories.”
I slightly smiled and said, “Hmph! By that time, they will not have any other choice but to deploy troops; firstly we will launch a direct attack at the Dunder province, only then we inform the village chiefs to gather armed forces for defence. The war does not need their soldiers, so the moment you give the orders, tell them that the Demon Clan will attack anytime, if they still wish to preserve their power and position, they will have to join forces and defend the borders. If I’m not wrong, these selfish people all have an elite force in their hands, if they are not planning to betray the Beastman country, I believe they will do what will benefit them the most.” The theory concerning the elite troops was deduced from Jinyin and Pan Zong.”
The Beast Emperor stared blankly for quite a while before he finally replied, “But this is too risky, if we declare war without going through deliberation with the tribe chiefs, they will join hands and accuse me of misconduct. And if we already started the war on the frontlines, but they refused to assist on the defence on the rear, what should we do? Wouldn’t we beastmen……”
I shook my head and said, “It will not happen, first, no one wants their homeland to be impoverished; And secondly, the Demon Clan will not exterminate the beastmen, if we are done for, who will forge an alliance to join hands and fight the Dragon Empire with them? Our motive is not to fight a real war with the Demon Clan, we just need to do something that will act as deterrence for them, so that they will not bully us at will. As long as we let the Demon Clan preserve their face in the end, I believe they will accept it willingly.”
“Let’s say you are right, but if we do not inform the tribe chiefs in advance, what forces do we have to attack the Dunder province? It was reported that the Dunder province has no less than 50 thousand defenders, on top of that the commander of the defenders is a Fallen Angel.”
I rolled up the map on the floor and said, “Father emperor, if you wish to win this war, you must give me the right to have some freedom, I do not request more than just one word -trust-, can I?”
The beast emperor solemnly said: “Of course, you are my son, how could I ever doubt you, so what’s your plan?”
Coldness flashed past my eyes, I said, “How many men remained in your Wild Lion corps?”
The beast emperor replied: “There are more than three thousand, however, I would still need them to defend the royal palace therefore I cannot give them all to you.”
“It does not have to be all, I hope you could lend me a thousand elites, then another thousand from my father’s Beamon Army, with my father as the commander, that will be enough. Yuna and Sasi territory will also send some elites, with these people we will be able to capture the entire Dunder province in the shortest time possible. And of course, most importantly, these men have to be commanded by me and not father.
The beast emperor frowned, “I can give you the Wild Lion corps, but you cannot use the Beamon corps, you should know that the Beamon corps does not only symbolize our beastmen’s greatest power, but at the same time it is equally famous as the Fallen Angels and the Dragon Knights. If we were to use them, the Demon Clan’s Fallen Angels would surely participate in this war, then I’m afraid it’ll be rather difficult to win this war.”
I shook my head and replied, “No, I need the powerful force of thrust from the Beamons, this operation must absolutely not disinclude them. As for the Fallen Angel Legion, you may rest assured, they may not necessarily be much of a threat to us. Let’s say if they really participated in this war, would you please tell me how many men does the Fallen Angel Legion have?
The Beast Emperor thought for a while and answered, “There should be at least 30 men, they lost two when they attacked the Dragon Empire last time, but they also killed 2 Dragon Knights as a result.”
I said calmly, “Very well, I will analyze the current situation of the Fallen Angel Legion for you: from what I know, the Fallen Angel Legion has a total of 38 men, like what you just said, two have died, which means 36 remain. This time, we eliminated 4 Fallen Angels in Sasi when 3 of us joined hands, so only 32 remain. When I was in the Dragon Empire, I once heard from the scout units of the frontlines: the Demon Clan is now divided into 2 factions. The Demon Emperor faction is the faction that controls the majority of the Fallen Angels, and although I don’t know who the other authority is, he also controls one third of the Fallen Angels. Both parties secretly had a confrontation, and 4 Fallen Angels have perished as a result. Looking at this situation, besides the Demon Emperor and the guard commander who can transform into a four winged Fallen Angel, only 28 Fallen Angels are left. Even if the Demon Emperor was able to control all the Fallen Angels, he would not risk them all, after all, our thousand Beamon warriors aren’t vegetarians. Moreover, there’s the Lernean Hydra Pan Zong, the Twin-headed Wolf Jinyin, and I on top of that my father. With this force we can at least handle about 10 Fallen Angels. Even if there’s a four-winged, my father will be able to handle it, and with the combination of the Beamons, I’m afraid they will only invite trouble for themselves.”
Actually these words were not entirely true, when I killed the Fallen Angels, I was in the transformed state, but can I transform if I’m leading the beastmen for an attack? Definitely not!
The Beast Emperor was clearly influenced by my words, “Can you bring the two spiritual leaders of the Nagas and Werewolves to meet me?”
I nodded and replied, “Of course. I know that you need time to think about this, I will bring them to meet you tomorrow morning. Father Emperor, you must quickly make a decision. Speed is the key to winning wars. If we wish to lessen our losses we must make preparations as soon as possible. I’m aware that there’s certainly risks in this operation, but the greater the risks, the greater the rewards.”
“En, I understand, you can leave for now.” I could see that the Beast Emperor was very tired, the decision on this matter was an extremely difficult one to make. Just one mistake would make him the sinner of the Beastmen race, that’s why I would not force him.
“Yes, father emperor, this son will take his leave now. Please take care of your health.”
I was about to leave when the Emperor suddenly stopped me: “Ah! Wait a minute, Lei Xiang.”
“Does your highness have any other orders?”
“Since you have returned, please make a visit to your house, your father was not in a good mood recently, after all he is your real father. And if you want to succeed in your attack on the Demon Clan, you must persuade him, don’t you want to bring the Beamon warriors with you? Then you have to ask your father for consent.”
“I will, Father Emperor.” It’s about time for me to make a visit there, it’s been a long time since I had met my father. I do not posses any familiar feelings for him, I could even go as far as to say that there’s only hatred, but yet I couldn’t ignore his place in my heart. Which son wouldn’t feel proud of his father’s greatness? Who wouldn’t wish for his father to be a hero who everyone respects?
From my gaze the Emperor could see that I was somewhat at a loss. He continued, “Your mother is doing very well in the imperial palace, her changes are huge. I went to visit her when you left, and I visited again a few days ago. Although it was just a few month’s time her changes are very obvious, so much that I nearly failed to recognize her.”
When he mentioned about mother, I felt warmth inside my heart, “Father emperor, thank you for your care for my mother. I will visit her later.”
“Alright then, you may leave, sigh…… I need to think about this properly indeed.” As he saw that I had left, the beast emperor murmured to himself, “What on earth should I do?”
A black shadow flashed, a vague figure flew to the side of the Emperor, “Your majesty, this child is right, this is a chance. If we do not resist even after being bullied over our head, your prestige will drop even further. Furthermore, the Demon Clan will make our situation worse by……”
The Beast Emperor raised his hand and stopped the black shadow from continuing, “Do you think that Lei Xiang can be fully trusted? If he really succeeds this time, his prestige will greatly rise in the Beastman country, and besides, you heard that too, he used such a short amount of time to persuade the Naga tribe and the Werewolf tribe, which makes me really uneasy.
The black shadow said, “Your Majesty, forgive me for my words, I can’t sense any wild scheme from this child Lei Xiang, from my experience of observing people, he wants to help the Beastmen from the bottom of his heart, I’m sure you know about this saying: if you doubt him then don’t use him, but if you are using him then don’t doubt him. Let alone, his mother is in our hands, so he can’t pull out any tricks. The most important point is that he doesn’t have the appearance of a beastman, how could he convince the people? That is why you don’t need to worry.”
Hearing what he said, the beast emperor was convinced, then he sighed, “There’s a saying ‘High achievements will shake the master’. If this really happens, I am afraid that it will not be easy to deal with. But you are right too, I need to put him to use. To tell you the truth I really like this kid, it would be so great if he would be my real child”
The Black shadow said, “You don’t need to decide right away. Wait till our men are back and ask them, if Lei Xiang is trustworthy. Then we can make better decisions.”
The Beast Emperor nodded, “OK, then let’s discuss that matter first, if we attack,…” Just this moment, a loud voice sounded outside of the imperial study room, “Report.”
The Beast emperor roared, “Didn’t I say that I don’t want be disturbed?”
The person from the outside answered, “Your majesty, the people from the Demon Clan came, no matter what they wish to see you personally, that is why I……”
“Hn? People from the Demon clan came.” The beast emperor glared at the black shadow, “Why did people of the Demon clan come?”
The shadow murmured “Seems, seems…”
“Why are you mumbling as if you have something to hide, speak now.”
“As you wish, your Majesty, the emissary of the Demon Clan seems to have come to us for money.”
The Beast Emperor anger erupted as he surged to his feet, and roared, “Hhmph! Is there no end to these scoundrels? We have lost more than they have, and they are still coming to us for money, this is pissing me off.”
The black shadow said in a low voice, “You still have to meet him your majesty, please calm down.”
The beast emperor is a ruler after all, he took two deep breaths and ordered the guards outside, “Bring him in.”
“As you command, your majesty.” When the Beast Emperor spoke, the black shadow already disappeared. The beast emperor ground his teeth, rearranged his attire then headed straight towards the political hall.
When I left the imperial study room, I was unable to hold back my desire to see my mother again I used the lightest carriage and the most familiar path to arrive at the garden where my mother lived with the fastest speed possible.
The garden was unrestricted. It was completely peaceful inside and not a single sound could be heard, fragrant aroma of flowers diffused from the inside this was my favorite smell; the smell of nature, it immediately put me in a serene mood as I began using light steps erasing my presence, I walked in stealthily.
The well familiar figure of mother’s back appeared in front of me, she was crouching in the courtyard to groom the flowers. Every movement of her hand was serious and she was extremely meticulous, as if she was afraid of damaging them.
Mother was wearing a light pink dress today, she was covered with a white cape made from an unknown beast skin, it was winter after all. Even though the weather was nice, it was still cold. Mother’s hair was shining black. A light breeze would blow occasionally, perking up a few strands of her fine black hair.
Seeing my mother I felt my blood boiling maybe it was the feeling of familial bonds. In order not to disturb my mother’s interest I carefully sneaked towards her, step by step.
However, I forgot that I was tall, when I walked behind mother, my body blocked the sunlight and created a shadow, suddenly darkening the ground.
Mother’s movement was unexpectedly very nimble, she lightly leaped forward, and shouted after a sudden turn of head, “Who is there?”
I took a step forward and with a plop I kneeled onto the floor, “Mother, I am back.” The tears that I was holding back began were uncontrollably flowing down my face.
Mother quickly supported me with both hands and said emotionally, “Son, why are you back so quickly? Hurry, stand up and let mother take a look at you.”
A warm vitality field was emitted from my mother’s body. It made me feel very comfortable, the unpleasant feeling that I had from a few days before fell off, maybe this was the effect of the turquoise.
Mother helped me up and looked at me carefully. I also looked at mother attentively: just like what the Beast Emperor said, mother’s appearance changed a lot from the time before I left. Not only was her hair black again, her skin turned more meticulous and glossy, unlike how dry it was back then, and the wrinkles on her face lessened with her body gradually rounding.
Mother was really an unrivalled beauty. Even though she was almost 40 years old, and was once overly aged, now I could see the svelte of a young lady from her body. Mother said in a benevolent voice while wiping my tears, “Child, you thinned. You suffered during the days you were outside.”
There was no way that I couldn’t have lost weight, because most of the time I was away was spent in bed. I grabbed mother’s hand, and said “This is nothing. How are you supposed to gain anything if you are unwilling to sacrifice something for it? You are really beautiful.”
A red blush flashed past mother’s cheek, she looked even more gorgeous, “Stinky brat, what nonsense are you blabbering, are you making fun of your mother?”
I smiled, “How could I? Mom, everything I said is the truth, you are really beautiful. Seeing you being healthy makes me really happy.”
Mother held my hand, and said “Let’s talk inside.” Walking into the room mother pressed me down into a chair. She sat beside me, but her kind gaze was never taken away from my face.
“Child, do you know? When you told me that you could restore my appearance, I didn’t have any hope. But after half a year of nursing, I don’t think I need three years to restore of my former appearance. Mother is really grateful to you, you gave me the will to continue living.” While saying that mother was on the verge of tears.
I called out with deep emotion, “Mom!” Taking a step forward and crouched before mother.
Mother embraced my head into her arms, a formidable vitality field was transferred from the maternal love to my body and mind, “Mom, these are all things that I should do, you are already more beautiful than those of the same age.”
Mother pressed her cheek on my head, and asked carefreely, “Really?” I smiled, “Of course, have you already forgotten about it? I went to Dragon Empire once.”
Mother said, “Right, you went to the Dragon Empire before. But I don’t know if I have any hope of returning.” I said firmly, “There is. Of course there is. After I have finished my business here, I will absolutely take you back. The duke will be absolutely happy to see you.”
Mother said dully, “If I really could go back, I only want to secretly take a few glances at him from the distance. That would be enough, I don’t want to destroy his family. Child, I won’t allow you to tell him that I am still alive, understand?”
I stood up, and frowned, “Mom, I don’t understand, haven’t you waited a long time for this? Why don’t you want to meet the duke? I believe that Uncle Ah Feng is not someone that will forget about his old lover.”
Mother smiled bitterly, “I know that he is not that sort of person, that is why I don’t want to go and see him, do you understand? If we met now, then what would happen to his wife. He has daughters, he has a family. Even the hard earned power he has now, he would lose all of it. He already lost a lot because of me, I can’t let him experience more pain. We have already not seen each other for such a long time, why should I make more trouble for him? Ah! Have you decided what you will do with his two daughters?”
When she spoke of Zi Yan and Zi Xue, a gentle expression flashed past my eyes, a strong wistfulness rushed through my mind and for a moment I was lost for words. “Silly child, I can see from your eyes that you really like them, but why can’t you just choose one? You men always hope to have more wives and concubines.”
I blushed, and shook my head while saying a little awkwardly, “I also don’t want be like that, I can’t control myself on the aspect of feelings. Mom, I am really not that sort of person who changes his mind on a whim.”
Mother smiled, “It’s alright, mother knows that you are a good child. If you can get a hold of yourself, and don’t hurt the ones you love, no matter how many wives you take your mother will support you.”
I said moved, “Thank you, mom.”
“Right, when you left didn’t you say that it would take a long time till you get back? Why are you back so quickly?”
I sighed again, “A few things happened, so I had no choice but to come back. Do you still remember my escorts? On the journey, only Ming Ke alone came back with me, everyone else was killed.”
Mother was shocked, “What? All of them died? Didn’t you say that those escorts were good in martial arts?” I said with hatred, “They were good, but they were no match for the Fallen Angels of the Demon clan. Those bastards of the Demon clan, they used such despicable methods in order not to let the beastmen country develop. I will never leave it at that matter and I came back in order to discuss about sending troops with his majesty.”
Mother frowned and asked, “Are you going to war again?”
I held mother’s hands, “Mother I know you hate fighting, but when the enemy is already bullying people in front of your house, shouldn’t you fight back? After all we want to protect our home, right?”
Mother suddenly said seriously, “Ah-xiang, can you promise your mother one thing?”
I happily nodded, “Of course, no matter if it is one, ten or even a hundred things, if you say it I will surely fulfill it for you.”
Mother gratifyingly said, “Well then, I hope you could promise me, no matter what happens in the future, you will never lead the beastmen army to fight against the Dragon Empire, Ok?”
Not going to war with the Dragon Empire? I lowered my head while thinking about it. “Mom, If everything goes smoothly: after we have punished the Demon clan, and when the Beastmen have settled down, I will take you back to the Dragon Empire. I don’t think we will have any more conflict with them, let alone in the Dragon Empire there’re still my most beloved people.”
Mother’s expressions worsened, “I want a clear answer from you, can you promise or not?”
Seeing that mother was a little angry, I quickly said, “Ok, I Lei Xiang swear, that never in my life will I lead the Beastmen army into a war with the human’s Dragon Empire. And if I ever break this oath, I shall have heavenly punishment descend upon me.”
When I said the last part, mother covered my mouth and complained, “I only want you to promise me not swear to me.” I suddenly remembered something, “Mom, I still don’t know your real name. Could you please tell me now?”
Mother smiled lightly and said, “Only now do you remember to ask? Remember, mother is called Ji Yun.”
I asked puzzled, “Isn’t it Ji Ling?”
“Silly child, Ling Ling is mother’s nickname, mother’s formal name is Ji Yun.”
“Ji Yun sounds great too! Oh right mother, I became sworn brothers with a few beastmen friends.”
“Oh? What sort of people are they?”
“With me there are four people altogether. I am the fourth brother, third brother is the only survivor from my escorts, Ming Ke. To say the truth, I held great responsibility for the death of my escorts. If I could have come back two days earlier, this tragedy wouldn’t have happened.” Speaking about the death of my escorts, I became depressed, “Because of that I will protect Ming Ke, and never let him become harmed by anyone ever again. Speaking of four people, we are actually 5, because the second in seniority is a Twin-headed wolf named Jinyin. They have two wolf heads, and also two brains!”
Mother asked curiously, “Are there that sort of races among the beastmen? Why haven’t I heard of this before?”
I smiled bitterly, “Not only haven’t you heard about it, I haven’t heard about it either. Although this time I did not only meet a two headed wolf, but also a Lernean Hydra. However it is good that he only has one line of thought, else it would be pure chaos. The Lernean Hydra is our eldest brother and he is called Pan Zong, I gave him that name!”
“Then where are they right now?”
“I let third brother arrange a place for them to stay, they didn’t come here with me.”
Mother said, “Now this is your mistake, why didn’t you bring them home, we have enough space for them, even if it is dozens of people, the Beast Emperor will not blame you anyway.”
Right, why didn’t I think of it. I hugged my mother tightly and give her a kiss on her cheek.
“You’re right, Mother. I will go and find them immediately.” I ran out after saying that.
Mother smiled benevolently while looking at my leaving figure, “This child….”