Tang Yin stunned and searched Yan Lie’s memory silently. Indeed, the civilians in Haotian Empire could not become an official. Only after obtaining the title of nobility were they qualified and stood a chance to get official ranking. That was also how it was in Feng state.
He nodded and asked, “So you chose to join the army and plan to obtain the nobility title through killing opponents?”
The young man didn’t try to hide and answered, “That’s right. Also, being in the army is the easiest way to obtain the nobility title.”
This was the truth, Feng state also had a tradition that encouraged military spirit. During periods of wartime, the army had always used the number of enemies killed to discuss meritorious deeds. The more enemy heads you brought back, the greater your deeds. After accumulating them to a certain amount, one will then be rewarded with the nobility title.
Tang Yin looked at the young man amused and said, “By the looks of it, you have never practiced spiritual arts?”
The young man said seriously, “I am a scholar.”
Tang Yin shrugged and said, “It’s already hard for you to hold a weapon, how are you going to kill? If you can’t kill, how are you going to collect headcounts? Without headcounts, how are you going to get the nobility title?”
The young man smiled. His smile was sly, and he said, “Which is why I have been looking. I’ve been looking for someone who could cooperate with me. I was never able to find that person, but…” He looked at Tang Yin with light in his eyes and said while smiling, “Now, I’ve found one.”
Tang Yin squinted. He pointed at his own nose saying, “The one you found isn’t me, is it?”
The young man nodded in excitement and said hurriedly, “You have skills, I have knowledge. The two of us working together would definitely be seamless. It wouldn’t take long for us to both obtain the nobility title.”
Tang Yin sneered with a lack of interest and said, “I will not bring a burden with me.” For him, the young man who had never cultivated spiritual art was useless. “Plus, I am not interested in the title. This war has nothing to do with me. I have to solve my own problems first.”
He only had one thought in his mind, that was to go over to Moonlight City in Mount Dusk, to find Crystal and Xuan Zhenzi, and to seek revenge.
Seeing that his expression got ice cold in an instant, the young man asked cautiously, “Where do you want to go?”
“Moonlight City?” The young man was shocked and questioned, “Is it the Moonlight City in Mount Dusk?”
“That’s right.” Tang Yin simply answered.
The young man was puzzled and asked suspiciously, “What are you going there for? Plus, Moonlight City had turned into ruins hundreds of years ago. Now, there probably aren’t many people who even remember the name Moonlight City.”
“What?” Tang Yin was shocked, Moonlight City has turned into ruins? How is this possible? When Yan Lie left Moonlight City to duel with Gu Zhen, Moonlight City was still prosperous. How could it had become ruins? And it had become ruins a few hundred years ago? Could it be that Yan Lie saw a ghost? He knew that this was indeed impossible.
He sneered and said with a cold tone, “You’re lying to me.”
“Why do I need to lie to you? Plus, this isn’t something you could lie about. You could ask around and see who even remembers the name Moonlight City. It had long become history.”
Seeing that the young man didn’t seem like he was lying, Tang Yin’s firm confidence started to waver. A light flashed across his mind as he suddenly remembered that Yan Lie’s corpse was already a skeleton, Could it be… He didn’t dare to think further and asked softly, “Now… Which year is it on the imperial calendar?”
The imperial calendar was Haotian Empire’s chronological method with the establishment of Haotian Empire as the first year.
The young man looked at Tang Yin inexplicably and said, “Now it’s the eight hundred and fifth imperial year, you… are you okay?”
How could I be okay?!
Tang Yin felt light headed. He was clear that Yan Lie’s duel with Gu Zhen happened in the three hundred and fifth imperial year, yet now it was the eight hundred and fifth year. This meant that it was five hundred years after Yan Lie’s era.
He buckled the young man’s neck and asked, “You’re not lying to me?”
The young man was shocked by his appearance and stuttered, “This… How could this be told as a lie? It is indeed the eight hundred and fifth imperial year!”
Tang Yin released his hand slowly. In an instant, he was like a deflated ball. His legs went soft, and he sat slowly onto the ground.
It was hard to imagine that Yan Lie had been dead for five hundred years. Five hundred years was long enough for many things to change, even the prosperous Moonlight City had become ruins.
He didn’t belong to this world. And now, even Yan Lie who combined with him no longer belonged to this world. Tang Yin closed his eyes, So what is the purpose of me living in this world?
It was impossible for Crystal to live for five hundred years, Xuan Zhenzi also wouldn’t be able to live for five hundred years. The doubts and hatred that belonged to him initially had all disappeared along with the five hundred years. Tang Yin who had just found a purpose seemed to be hollowed out in an instant, he didn’t know what to do.
“You… What’s wrong with you?” The young man didn’t know the problem Tang Yin had and asked softly.
Tang Yin shook his head. He initially thought that there were still people, things, and places that he cared about. Yet it had all turned to ashes now… He murmured, “I don’t know where I should go, I don’t know what I should do.”
The young man stunned and then said aloud, “What’s there to consider? The world is a mess now, of course you’ll have to do something ground-breaking…” Just as he said this, he too felt that he was too arrogant. He then switched to say, “But from the looks of it, the main important thing is, how do we escape?”
“Escape?” Tang Yin looked up.
The young man said resentfully, “Attacking Ning state this time was completely launching a wrong war at the wrong time and at the wrong place. Two hundred thousand people were killed, and who knows how many are able to return to Feng state. Now, there are more than a few hundred thousands of Ning people coming after our injured and defeated soldiers. If we don’t escape and stay here, isn’t that equate to waiting for death?”
Through Yan Lie’s memory, Tang Yin knew that Feng state and Ning state were neighbouring states. Yet the war between them had never stopped that rooted from the fight over Hedong region. Hedong region had fertile soils and abundant minerals. Initially, Feng and Ning state each owned half of the region. However, when Ning state seeked help from Feng state during their desperate times, Ning state’s monarch made a promise to give their half of the Hedong region over to Feng state. It’s just that Feng state didn’t fully assist Ning state after agreeing to the terms, causing the dissatisfaction of Ning state. After that, Ning state attempted to reclaim their half of Hedong region and got rejected by Feng state. Both states started to spew venom at one other and war followed to unravel. In the meantime, both Feng and Ning state had taken turns to occupy the entire Hedong region, and both states had also announced that Hedong region was under their territory. The war continued and the losses of both parties accumulated continuously till it was hard to estimate. In the end, no one could tell if Hedong region belonged to Feng state or Ning state.
“This time’s war was also caused by Hedong?” Although it had been five hundred years, Tang Yin’s guess was not wrong.
The young man nodded and said, “Yes. There is nothing wrong with reclaiming Hedong region. However, we have fought too many battles in the past few years. Against Ning state, Yu state, and An state. Our state has already been riddled with holes, yet Ning state’s power is a lot stronger than before from their rest and recuperation. It’s already hard enough for us to defend ourselves, how is it possible for us to win an active initiation? The king was too anxious. With this time’s defeat, it is unsure when we could ever reclaim Hedong region.”
The corner of Tang Yin’s mouth twitched and he did not say much. Ever since the founding of Feng state, war had never stopped. Feng people praised military spirit and had a rampant nature. They have long been used to reciprocating a war with another war. Yet the fiasco of two hundred thousand armies was still rare in the history of Feng state.
“Right, my name is Qiu Zhen. What is your name?”
“What are your plans? Are you still going to Moonlight City?”
Tang Yin shook his head. What’s the point of going to Moonlight City now?
“In my opinion, you should just stay in the army. With your skills, you can definitely climb ranks and get the nobility title. I could also have someone to rely on.” The young man named Qiu Zhen smiled and tried to please him. Although he thought that Tang Yin was really weird and that he said inexplicable things as if he had some mental problems, his instincts told him that following Tang Yin wouldn’t cause him any harm, and he would at least have a guarantee to continue living.
Tang Yin looked at him with a weird look and said, “You want to come with me?”
Qiu Zhen laughed as he nodded and said, “You can put it that way. Plus, I know your secret. Keeping me around will make you feel more assured!” He was talking about Tang Yin being a dark spiritual arts practitioner.
“If I kill you, not only will I be assured, I’ll be free of trouble too.” Tang Yin said expressionlessly.