Monarch of Evernight - Volume 10 - The Flag of Evernight (1183-) Chapter 1225: King of Legends
The decorations here were mostly made of beast bones, rather fitting for the duke’s name and yet they made the entire place look ghastly. The floors above housed all kinds of cultivation chambers, laboratories, and even a small workshop, probably where the duke himself worked on his bone gear.
The duke’s bedroom was on the top floor of the castle, taking up an entire floor. There was a large bed made of beast bones, covered in different kinds of beast skins. This bedroom looked especially werewolf-like—primitive and bestial.
What left Qianye speechless was that the bedroom was not sealed. The side that faced the Jade Sea was supported by over a dozen stone pillars but with no wall or windows. The cold wind from the Jade Sea could blow in without restraint and fill every corner of the room with a deep chill. The werewolves weren’t cold-blooded animals; they liked fire and warmth as well. Qianye simply couldn’t understand this duke’s preferences. The bedroom was decorated with a large number of bone carvings, beast heads, and strange-looking rocks. It looked more like a sacrificial altar than a bedroom.
The shaman said something while Qianye was looking around the room. To which, he couldn’t help but exclaim, “You want me to stay here!?”
The shaman replied respectfully, “This is a holy area, only you have the right to stay here.”
Fortunately, the weather wasn’t too cold yet. Otherwise, Qianye really suspected whether these werewolves were planning to make him freeze to death. The Jade Sea possessed four distinct seasons, and the winters were fairly cold. The human sea wind at such a height might actually freeze people to death.
Qianye shrugged and walked over to the white bone-bed. He patted the headboard casually and tried lifting a piece of hide. “Dismantle this bed first and throw it away.”
He hadn’t even finished speaking when he let out an exclamation of surprise and began observing the hide. This beast skin—with black patterns on a white base—felt fairly ordinary to the touch, and it was hard to tell what kind of beast it had come from. This thing had been used as a mattress, so Qianye had no intention of keeping it. What surprised him was that he actually couldn’t tear it away with a casual tug. So, he unknowingly added more strength, but it still wouldn’t budge!
Qianye’s strength was enough to tear steel plates, let alone beast hides. This black and white beast skin, however, was entirely unharmed. That was highly abnormal.
After removing the messy beast hide on the bed, he saw that a corner of it was wedged into the bone. The sturdy beast hide was one thing, but the bones that formed the bed frame were also extraordinary.
Qianye carelessly flicked the headboard of the bed. An origin power glow flickered at his fingertips, eliciting a sound of clashing metal as he made contact. There was now a white spot on the bed-frame, and most of it disappeared when it was wiped.
Qianye raised his brows in surprise. That flick wasn’t as simple as it seemed because he had utilized the power of Venus Dawn. His origin crystal wasn’t entirely stable, and the definitive powers of a divine champion weren’t evident just yet. However, his origin power had inched closer to the Daybreak origin after the recent purification process.
The might of this flick was comparable to a shot from an origin cannon, yet it had only left a small mark on the bed. It would seem the creature from which these bones were collected wasn’t below the Earth Dragon when it was alive.
Qianye turned back when he heard a plop behind him, only to find that the great shaman was kneeling with his head lowered to the floor. The werewolf nobles behind him were also in deep prostration.
“What are you all doing?” Qianye asked.
“We’ve finally confirmed that you’re the true king of legends!”
“How did that happen?”
The great shaman looked up briefly. “This bed was formed from the remains of a divine beast. No one in three hundred years had left a mark upon it, not even the duke.”
“Since you can’t even dent these bones, how did you make this bed?”
“This bed was constructed under my supervision back in the year. In truth, the framework was made from suitably-shaped natural bones and fixed with leather straps.”
Qianye lifted the hide to reveal the construction of the bed frame. It was just as the shaman had said.
He then picked up the other pieces of hide and took a brief look at them. The other ones didn’t have the black and white patterns, but they definitely didn’t come from ordinary beasts, either. It was a wonder how the duke had gotten his hands on so many different pieces of void colossus hide.
It was a waste to use these hides as a mattress, and it wouldn’t be comfortable at all. Qianye simply couldn’t figure out this duke’s tastes. He rolled up the hides and tossed them to Xu Jingxuan. “Put these away and turn them into armor later on.”
After catching the stack of hides, Xu Jingxuan had to take one step back before he could secure his footing. As someone who knew his stuff, the general’s expression shifted after a glance. “So many!”
Qianye then patted the bed frame, saying, “Disassemble this and send it back to my warship.”
The bones of a void colossus were extremely sturdy, much more so than high-strength alloys. They would need specialized equipment in order to process them. Ignoring everything else, just the saw and drill bits weren’t something any random craftsman would have. Only the Empire or the famed vampire and demonkin clans would have a firm grasp of such technology.
Even Dark Flame’s headquarters in Southern Blue could not work on these colossus bones. They would most likely have to be shipped off to the Ningyuan Heavy Industries’ factory in the Empire. As expected, many of the decorative items were made from the remains of void colossi. Using such priceless materials as decorative items was truly a waste.
Qianye also realized why the Whitebone Duke had his own workshop. He needed to work on these items personally since almost no one else in the Jade Sea was capable enough.
The void colossus’ remains were light and strong, the most premium of materials. Even the Empire’s best alloys would fall short in certain aspects. Bones with remnant vitality like the ones on the Earth Dragon were priceless treasures. These decorative items might be pieces of art in the Whitebone Duke’s eyes, but Qianye had no intention to appreciate them. He ordered his men to ship the items off onto the warship, and of course, it wasn’t so that he could admire them.
Qianye sized the bed up for a good while. These were natural bones, so he wanted to try and understand more about the void colossus through observation. In the end, he still failed to grasp any important points. Almost as though he had remembered something, Qianye asked, “Since you were the one who oversaw the assembly of this bone bed, do you still have any materials left?”
The shaman said, “Of course, there’s still a lot in fact. Some of them are at the ancestral altar, while the rest are in the duke’s secret treasury.”
“That is the duke’s personal storage, but he is the only one who knows where it is. The craftsmen involved in its construction have been executed.”
Qianye nodded. “Then take your time looking for it. I’m going to the ancestral altar to take a look.”
“Sire, this way.”
The ancestral altar was close to the duke’s residence and was also a grand hall. The structure was thirty meters tall, with an altar made of stone at the very end. Upon it was the carving of a giant wolf, with colossal bones scattered around it.
There was a small altar in front of the big one, with over a dozen different werewolf sculptures. Judging from their attire, they seemed to be from different tribes.
The great shaman said, “These are the seventeen tribal ancestors who founded Cerulean Wave City, and also our totem. The central seat belonged to the duke, but now, it is naturally yours.”
There was a stone slab at the center of the altar, upon which was an emblem with Qianye’s aura on it.
In just a short few days, the dark golden blood energy on the emblem had been activated a fair bit. The effect was even more pronounced than with the tribes of the great corridor. As expected of the royal capital of the Jade Sea, the effects of worship here were much stronger.
In Qianye’s vision, the sculptures of the seventeen ancestors were also surrounded by origin power, all of them inching away from Qianye’s emblem. It was as though they feared the dark golden blood energy.
Placing the emblem at the center of the ancestral altar was proof of the werewolf tribes’ attitude toward Qianye. If they weren’t truly loyal to him, they would rather destroy the altar.
At this point, Qianye finally understood that the authenticity of that circulating legend was not important. What really scared the werewolves into submission was the aura from the River of Blood, brought about by the dark golden blood energy. More accurately, it was the power from the darkness origins located at the source of the river.
Be it demonic energy, blood energy, or the werewolves’ ancestral power, all of them were a part of the darkness system. They were mutually conflicted because of their location in different regions of the spectrum, but all paths led to the same endpoint—the darkness origin!
In truth, these werewolves idolized Qianye as the son of darkness. The peerless strength he had exhibited was what the darkness longed for. As for his bloodline and race, it was no longer important.
After taking a look at the altar, Qianye ordered his men to carry away the colossus bones near the giant wolf totem. Then, he headed toward the Whitebone Duke’s meeting room.
The hall was similarly extraordinary. The long metal table was even taller than the height of a human male. Even for werewolves, not everyone could find confidence before this tall table.
There was a giant stone chair at the end. It was just the right fit for the Whitebone Duke, but Qianye looked like a child on it. The seat was so big that even an arachne would find it rather empty. The Whitebone Duke had too many protruding fangs and spikes from his armor, so he couldn’t fit unless the seat was massive.
Qianye had taken his place on the main seat when a brief period of chaos ensued below. Under the guidance of Eiseka and the great shaman, Qianye’s entourage occupied one side of the table and the Jade Sea nobles, the other.
The first item of the meeting was the reports. The great shaman stood up to talk about the situation within Cerulean Wave City—the number of Jade Sea werewolves, the taxation, the soldiers, and the natural products. Next, Eiseka presented a report on the tens of thousands of werewolves who had deserted that day, the progress in hunting them down, and which werewolf tribes in the Jade Sea were still offering resistance.
Only the border region was still offering visible resistance. These tribes numbered in the hundreds when added together and possessed a military power of over a hundred thousand. It was a fairly sizable power at a glance, but they were dispersed in various locations, so subduing them was just a matter of time.
The next topic was about minerals and resources. The Jade Sea werewolves lived primitive lives and possessed very little technology. What little they could excavate were just common goods. Even with the basic technology that they possessed, the speculation was that there were even more bountiful resources beneath the vast land of the Jade Sea. It would only require time to excavate them.
As for the other resources, they were just gems, treasures, and rare animals, a means for them to exchange weapons with the outside world.
Cerulean Wave City was the core of the entire Jade Sea. It relied on the bountiful fishing industry to keep hundreds of thousands of citizens fed. The other cities were so small that they looked pitiful. According to Imperial standards, they were simply small towns.
After learning the rough situation around the Jade Sea, Qianye assigned one Jade Sea werewolf, one great corridor werewolf, and one mercenary general each to one of six routes. Every route was assigned twenty thousand mixed soldiers, primarily led by the mercenary general and supported by two titled werewolf experts. These forces set out in all directions to sweep through the tribes that wouldn’t give up.
Eiseka and Xu Jingxuan were left behind to organize the Jade Sea werewolves and form a new mixed army. Nevertheless, equipping hundreds of thousands of werewolves was a burden that even an Imperial marquis’ territory would need to slowly digest. Qianye’s foundations alone were far from enough.
After Song Hui reported the available equipment that could be supplied, even the Jade Sea nobles understood what was going on. According to the current rate of production, it would take two to three decades to equip these hundreds of thousands of soldiers.
Qianye said with a frown, “Can’t we construct more refineries?”
Song Hui replied, “Even if building them is easy, where do we get the ores? Let alone mine, we haven’t even found the ore veins, have we?”
Military supplies had always been a complicated industry, involving various requirements. Many of the ores had to be excavated and smelted in specific ways, so building a complete mining industry wasn’t something that could be completed in a single day.
While Qianye was mulling over things, the bright-plumed chief couldn’t hold himself back. “Your Majesty, what’s there to worry about? We werewolves don’t need these weapons and armor in war! Are we not going to fight if we don’t have them? Rest assured, our claws and teeth are the best weapons, and our hides make for the best armor!”
The werewolf spoke vehemently, but the great shaman and other chiefs rolled their eyes at him. Werewolves were supposed to be brave, not stupid. Only an idiot wouldn’t use armor if one was available.