Wang Chong had only taken notice of Master Xuan Ming because he was a sorcerer.
I don't remember him being very favored in my last life. Has my interference once more caused a butterfly effect that changed this man's destiny? Or is there something else going on?
Wang Chong's mind was currently whirring with thoughts.
Many things had already changed in this life, and the Great Tang had managed to avoid all of those disasters. But this had also led to many new developments, such as the feast of all countries.
Master Xuan Ming had also not been appointed as the Empire Guardian Heavenly Master in his last life.
Of course, he was still the greatest variable. There had been no King of Foreign Lands, Nine Provinces Protector-General, or renowned official of Lingyan Pavilion in his last life. For a moment, Wang Chong could not determine the truth.
"Right, Your Highness, Young Master Qingyang has sent word that he will return to the capital in ten-some days!" Zhang Que suddenly said.
Wang Chong's eyes flashed, appearing surprised as he came to his senses.
It was truly surprising for Young Master Qingyang to be returning so quickly.
"Right, did he say anything else? Did he mention the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass?" Wang Chong asked.
Zhang Que bowed and said, "After searching through all of the mountains, they finally found a herb, but they can't confirm it. However, it is extremely similar to the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass mentioned by Your Highness and recorded in the ancient texts!"
After a few moments of silence, Wang Chong said, "Have him return!
"In addition, he needs to be cautious and move in secret. No outsider can know about the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass."
"Yes, Your Highness!"
Zhang Que bowed and quickly left to deliver the order.
The moment Zhang Que left…
Wang Chong suddenly trembled, a flash of insight in his mind.
Young Master Qingyang… Sword Dragon… the Kunlun Mountains…
A sorcerer… Master Xuan Ming… the Kunlun Mountains…
The Rainbow Glass Divine Grass!
He had sent Young Master Qingyang to the Kunlun Mountains to search for the Rainbow Grass Divine Grass, where Master Xuan Ming happened to be cultivating. Was that intentional or coincidence?
Had Young Master Qingyang encountered Master Xuan Ming in the Kunlun Mountains?
Did Master Xuan Ming know about the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass?
Master Xuan Ming was refining pills for Third Son Xuan. If Master Xuan Ming knew the truth, then did Third Son Xuan…
Wang Chong suddenly felt an ill foreboding!
"Old Eagle, send a letter to Young Master Qingyang for me. Ask him if he encountered any sorcerers in the Kunlun Mountains," Wang Chong said.
After a few moments of silence, Old Eagle's voice resounded in the hall. "Yes, Your Highness!"
I just hope I'm overthinking it, Wang Chong quietly said to himself.
Time went by, and though Old Eagle had sent the letter to Young Master Qingyang, Wang Chong did not receive a reply.
Ten-some days later, a guard rushed into the main hall and got down on one knee. "Reporting!
"Your Highness, we've just received word that Young Master Qingyang and Sword Dragon were ambushed on their way back to the capital."
Wang Chong had been holding a discussion on matters of grain and coal. This report made all of them pale.
"How could this have happened?"
"Who could have ambushed Young Master Qingyang?"
"Was it people from the martial arts world?"
Everyone was in disbelief.
Amongst them, Young Master Qingyang and Sword Dragon were the most inconspicuous. Let alone people of the Imperial Court, not even many people from the martial arts world had seen them before. And Young Master Qingyang was much stronger now, so how could someone have ambushed him?
But there was no reason for the guard to lie, so what was going on?
"Is it because of the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass?" someone suddenly said.
Everyone instantly fell dead silent.
Zhang Que, Xu Keyi, Su Shixuan, Old Eagle… all of them grimly frowned.
The Rainbow Glass Divine Grass, though a natural treasure, was not that useful for those who had nothing to do with the Divine Martial realm. If the enemy had come for this herb, the incident took on an entirely different nature.
"Mobilize the Wind, Forest, Fire, and Mountain teams. Have them search for Young Master Qingyang's location." A dignified voice rang out in the hall.
Upon hearing Wang Chong's words, everyone lowered their heads and responded in the affirmative.
Countless messenger birds took to the air.
At the same time, mounted scouts began to spread out from the capital.
But after three or four days, just when things had reached their most tense, there was a surprising development.
A messenger bird flew into the King of Foreign Lands Residence with news from Young Master Qingyang.
Young Master Qingyang and Sword Dragon had only suffered light injuries and would be at the capital soon.
In addition, the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass had not been stolen, and the two of them would deliver it to Wang Chong.
The news came quickly, but Young Master Qingyang and Sword Dragon arrived even more quickly.
The letter had said that they would arrive in two days, but on the same night, they rode into the capital and furtively entered the King of Foreign Lands Residence.
The main hall was brightly lit, and Wang Chong was clearly a bit surprised to see the two of them.
When Young Master Qingyang and Sword Dragon saw Wang Chong, they let out a sigh of relief.
Their breathing was ragged, and they had clearly consumed a great deal of Stellar Energy. From the intense fatigue on their faces, it was clear that they had been running for some time.
Wang Chong's eyes flashed as he stood up, walked around his desk, and stood before the pair.
"You've finally returned!"
Wang Chong waved a hand, upon which a golden stream of Subtle realm energy flew through the air and entered their bodies, restoring their Stellar Energy and healing their wounds.
In just a few moments, the blood returned to their faces and their breathing steadied, their condition vastly improved.
"Young Master! We completed the mission and successfully brought back the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass!"
Young Master Qingyang let out another sigh of relief, and together with Sword Dragon, he bowed.
His fair white hand shot out of his sleeve, holding a sandalwood box around one foot long.
The box had not been opened, but it exuded a thick medicinal aroma that permeated through one's soul.
"In addition, besides the divine grass, we found another object. Young Master, please take a look!"
As Young Master Qingyang spoke, he gestured at Sword Dragon, who understood and took something from his bosom that he offered with both hands.
Wang Chong gave it a casual glance, but a moment later, he snatched the object out of Sword Dragon's hand.
The object had instantly made Wang Chong's expression turn grave.
Sword Dragon had brought back a dagger, half a foot long and bizarrely shaped, one side of the blade appearing like an exceptionally sharp saw.
But this was not what Wang Chong's attention was on. What truly had his attention was the familiar wavy patterns on the blade.
Wang Chong was far too familiar with this sort of metal. After all, he had been the first one to bring Wootz Steel onto the world stage!
Wang Chong's Wootz Steel cavalry and their peerlessly sharp swords had taken part in battle after battle, gaining world renown.
The other countries had longed for these weapons for some time and had tried both openly and secretly to obtain this precious metal. However, though many people had obtained Hyderabad ore, only Wang Chong alone had the method to forge Wootz Steel weapons.
Wang Chong knew the whereabouts of every Wootz Steel weapon he had forged, and for outsiders to obtain them was as difficult as ascending to the heavens.
However, out of respect for the special status of the Great Tang imperial household, Wang Chong had sent a batch of Wootz Steel weapons as tribute to the Imperial Court.
Later on, Wang Chong had heard that the imperial household had forged some Wootz Steel weapons into daggers, calling them 'jadeblood sharks'.
These weapons were produced in extremely small numbers and granted only to the best of the elites. Not even the servitors and Golden Guards had a chance at them, let alone others.
Apparently, First Prince Li Ying had also tried to get these jadeblood sharks for the Rebellion of the Three Princes, but he had ultimately failed, because no one knew where the weapons were stored.
But what truly confirmed the identity of these daggers to Wang Chong was the image of the coiling dragon representing the imperial household on the daggers.
This was a 'jadeblood shark'!
Wang Chong's eyes twitched a few times, his expression turning grave.
"The enemy underestimated our strength. Sword Dragon and I were both injured during the initial ambush, but the wounds weren't fatal. We fought with them for a spell, killing some, heavily injuring others, and capturing a few.
"Once we found out where they came from, Sword Dragon and I were both stunned, but there is no doubting these daggers.
"Young Master, though we brought back the Rainbow Glass Divine Grass, if the other party is truly who we think it is, then the situation is extremely grave!"
Young Master Qingyang's face turned dark and grim.