EIF - Book 03 Chapter 055: Tenfold the Soldiers to Surround
Huangfu Chaoge’s and Ao Shun’s fists clashed. The huge impact caused a powerful shock wave to sweep out, scattering the dark clouds as a storm surged outward. Sand and rocks flew around below.
The battle between the foundation rock golems and the dragons also came to a halt.
Huangfu Chaoge remained in place, but Ao Shun instantly went flying back over three kilometers. Ao Shun’s face flushed red, his eyes brimming with anger.
Far in the distance:
Gu Hai frowned. “Huangfu Chaoge is only a Nascent Soul Realm cultivator, but Ao Shun already reached the Heavenly Palace Realm, yet Huangfu Chaoge actually won the first exchange?”
“It’s different. Huangfu Chaoge used the power of the Divine Foundation Royal Dynasty. All its citizens lent their strength to him, allowing his strength to soar. This is the advantage of blessings cultivation. The sovereign of a nation or the master of a sect can use the strength of all their supporters to fight external enemies,” Venerable Liu Nian explained.
Gu Hai stared into the distance, his eyes narrowing. He was a nation’s sovereign too. Perhaps he could fight like this as well?
Far in the distance, Huangfu Chaoge showed overwhelming strength. When seen from a distance, fire seemed to blaze around him.
“Duke Lu Yang, don’t bother sending this insignificant worm. Don’t you want to destroy my Divine Foundation Royal Dynasty? Don’t you want to deal with the potential problem that is me? Come on. Do it yourself!” Huangfu Chaoge glared at Duke Lu Yang sitting in the distance.
“You bastard…!” Ao Shun refused to accept this outcome, wanting to charge forward again.
However, Duke Lu Yang raised his hand, stopping Ao Shun.
Ao Shun nodded extremely respectfully.
Duke Lu Yang looked at Huangfu Chaoge and said, “Huangfu Chaoge, do you think that the Divine Foundation Royal Dynasty is that difficult to destroy? This duke appreciates your talent. That’s why I permitted you to live until now. However, my patience has limits!”
“Hahahahahaha! Duke Lu Yang, you want me to submit to you? Do you think that is possible? Do you really think that is possible? I wish I could eat your flesh, drink your blood, chew on your bones, and sleep on your skin!” Huangfu Chaoge said with bloodshot eyes.
“Humph! Stubborn!” Duke Lu Yang snorted coldly.
Then, Duke Lu Yang extended his land and threw a palm strike at Huangfu Chaoge.
Duke Lu Yang did not stand up, just launching his attack while seated. Suddenly, a surging black fog appeared out of nowhere. Then, a gigantic black palm manifested from the black fog, covering the sky as it pressed down on Huangfu Chaoge.
As the black palm pressed over, it kicked up tornadoes, causing sand and stones to fly about and cover the entire battlefield.
“Break!” Huangfu Chaoge shouted while glaring and punching.
A report tens of times louder than that from the clash between Huangfu Chaoge and Ao Shun rang out.
Powerful shock waves shook the surrounding mountains violently.
Crack! Crack! Crack! Crack!
The valley under the White Cloud flying ship suddenly cracked and split, a deep crevice forming.
“Move back!” Venerable Liu Nian yelled.
The flying ship withdrew carefully.
Suddenly, a loud sound rang out. The throne Duke Lu Yang sat on had exploded.
“Huh?” Duke Lu Yang stood up while glaring.
Duke Lu Yang flung out his sleeves, and the sand and stones flying about the battlefield soared into the sky.
This revealed an immense pit in the center of the battlefield. Deep gorges spread out like a spiderweb with the pit as its center, stretching towards the soldiers in the surroundings.
A volcanic crater at the bottom of the pit sent surging lava flowing out and along the gorges like fiery rivers. This forced the two armies to retreat continuously.
On the other side, Huangfu Chaoge had already returned to the city gate tower.
Huangfu Chaoge wiped off the blood at the corner of his lips as he panted and glared at the distant Duke Lu Yang.
“Duke Lu Yang, do you want to try again? Do you believe that once my Divine Foundation Royal Dynasty citizens recover, they will immediately send their energy to me again? I have an endless supply of energy. Do you believe that?” Huangfu Chaoge looked at the distant Duke Lu Yang coldly.
Now, Duke Lu Yang was standing. Although his throne had exploded, he had not gotten injured at all. He just looked at Huangfu Chaoge coldly.
“You have the power from the Divine Foundation Royal Dynasty’s citizens? Then, I will destroy this power. I will capture your cities one by one, destroying your blessings. Let’s see what else you would have to rely on. Humph!” Duke Lu Yang snorted coldly.
“Bring it on, then!” Huangfu Chaoge smiled coldly.
“Order a retreat! Seal off the border! Do not permit anyone to cross the border! Guard the surroundings of Divine Foundation City. No one is permitted in or out,” Duke Lu Yang said coldly.
“Yes!” the surrounding soldiers answered.
“Build fortifications here! This duke will camp here and stand watch over Divine Foundation City!” Duke Lu Yang said coldly.
The army quickly leveled the surrounding mountains. Then, they moved out various palace halls as if they had stored these buildings in storage items.
As the army made camp, artisans worked on construction, moving expeditiously.
Far in the distance, Huangfu Chaoge showed a sullen expression.
Duke Lu Yang built a city here to keep an eye on Huangfu Chaoge. Then, he would send out his army to capture the various cities of the Divine Foundation Royal Dynasty.
With each city lost, Huangfu Chaoge would have one portion less of blessings. That meant that he would receive less of the citizens’ power. Was Duke Lu Yang trying to drive him into a corner?
However, Huangfu Chaoge could not do anything about it. The moment he moved away, Divine Foundation City would be captured.
Far in the distance, Gu Hai’s group watched the two sides after they ceased fighting.
“Even if Huangfu Chaoge has his blessings, it looks like he is still not Duke Lu Yang’s match. Why did Duke Lu Yang order a retreat and stop? Why did he not press on? Furthermore, Duke Lu Yan’s army is definitely more ferocious than Huangfu Chaoge’s. He even has greater numbers. Why did he stop?” Mu Chenfeng frowned.
“Duke Lu Yang is stronger. However, a battle is not won by a hero. Sometimes, it depends on the overall situation,” Gu Hai explained.
“Oh?” Mu Chenfeng looked at Gu Hai with some doubts.
“The Art of War says, tenfold the soldiers to surround, fivefold the soldiers to make a direct attack, and twofold the soldiers to win a bitter battle. Also, while Duke Lu Yang has an overwhelming advantage, it is better to surround,” Gu Hai explained.
“Huh? Art of War? What Art of War?” Everyone looked at Gu Hai in confusion.
This startled Gu Hai. It is Sun Tzu’s Art of War. How am I going to explain that?
“Oh? It’s the Art of War I created. Let’s take this as an example. Duke Lu Yang’s side is much stronger and might succeed if they forcefully attack the city. However, do you know what would happen if they did that?” Gu Hai smiled.
Venerable Liu Nian said, “It would result in severe damage to both sides. All the citizens in the city would fight to the death. While Duke Lu Yang would take the final victory, he would suffer heavy losses. Huangfu Chaoge would lose in the end. However, Huangfu Chaoge would try to go down with his opponent, inflicting great damage on Duke Lu Yang.”
“That’s why he surrounded Divine Foundation City? As time goes by, the morale of the soldiers and citizens there would weaken. When morale is drained, breaking through would be easy, right? I recall that your Song Extermination Plan had a similar effect. What is being surrounded are not the soldiers but their mind and confidence.” Long Wanqing smiled.
“Indeed. Duke Lu Yang made an excellent move. Moreover, he even sent people to attack the other cities belonging to the Divine Foundation Royal Dynasty. This also has the effect of surrounding the enemy to attack any reinforcements coming to their aid. Haha! Duke Lu Yang is not easy to deal with.” Gu Hai nodded after taking a deep breath.
“What should we do now?” Mu Chenfeng asked worriedly.
“Let’s leave first. We can’t enter Divine Foundation City for now. We will think of an idea later,” Gu Hai said while shaking his head.
“That’s right. My mother has a secondary residence here. Let’s go there!” Long Wanqing’s expression changed.
“There is a secondary residence here?” Gu Hai felt startled.
Long Wanqing’s mother had two secondary residences in Ying Province. One was in Silver Moon City, and the other was here?
“It is where my master’s tribe is,” Mu Chenfeng said with a smile.
“Oh? The Wood Division Master’s master?”
“My master, Granny Qing Hua,” Mu Chenfeng elaborated while smiling.
Gu Hai felt slightly puzzled.
“Granny Qing Hua is like the foundation rock golems you saw. She is an elemental spirit, a plant elemental spirit. She is a love flower that turned into a spirit. This is the only place in the world with love flowers. Now, there are many young love flower treants here. I managed to take her as my master by chance. After that, the previous hall master established a secondary residence here and met me. Hence, I had the fortune to join Elite Hall,” Mu Chenfeng explained.
[TL Note: The name “Granny Qing Hua” translates to Granny Love Flower, the same as the race’s name.]
The flying ship carrying everyone skirted the border patrols and flew east.
Although the throne Duke Lu Yang sat on got destroyed, some subordinates quickly brought over another throne.
As Duke Lu Yang sat on the throne, he gazed at the distant Divine Foundation City coldly and showed a sneer.
An expressionless, azure-clad man stood at the side. His eyes appeared frigid, as though he lacked any human emotions.
The azure-clad man suddenly frowned slightly as he looked in the direction Gu Hai’s group had taken.
“Duke,” the azure-clad man said respectfully.
“Oh? Army Breaker, what’s wrong?” Duke Lu Yang asked.
“I heard Ensnaring Performance’s voice just now, so I listened more closely. Elite Hall’s Long Wanqing has arrived, and she seems to be going to Granny Qing Hua’s place,” Army Breaker replied respectfully.
“Ensnaring Performance?” Duke Lu Yang frowned as he looked at Army Breaker.
“Yes. We are both heaven-grade zithers. If I listen too closely, he will notice, so I did not do so. However, it is definitely him,” Army Breaker said gravely.
“Ensnaring Performance? It looks like the zither bestowal event is over. Even with Mister Mo going over, they did not obtain Ensnaring Performance? What happened?” Duke Lu Yang frowned slightly.
Army Breaker remained standing at the side, not saying anything more.
Duke Lu Yang looked at the distant Divine Foundation City. Then, he suddenly showed a faint smile. “Long Wanqing? Her arrival is very timely. She is going to Granny Qing Hua’s place, right? That will save me a lot of time.”
On the flying ship:
Ensnaring Performance turned his head to look in Duke Lu Yang’s direction as he frowned slightly.
“What’s wrong?” Gu Hai asked.
“I think someone discovered us,” Ensnaring Performance said with a frown.
“It seems to be someone called Army Breaker, who is by Duke Lu Yang’s side. He is also a heaven-grade zither? He discovered us,” Ensnaring Performance said while frowning.
“Army Breaker? Long Wanqing’s expression changed.
“What did they say?” Gu Hai frowned.
“They exchanged a few words at first. Then, Army Breaker set up a sound barrier, preventing me from listening in. Army Breaker? Humph! I can do that too. I’ll prevent them from listening to us,” Ensnaring Performance said, feeling upset.
Then, Ensnaring Performance waved.
Some buzzing rose around the group, then quickly disappeared.
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