The Human Emperor - Chapter 389: Resolution!
Chapter 389: Resolution!
Wang Chong chose not to say anything much.
Li Siye had spent most of his time at the northern borders of the empire, so it was natural that he hadn’t heard of Wootz steel. The crowd was only venting their frustrations at the several days of oppression.
Not even bothering with words, Wang Chong drew the sword at his waist, and with a casual flick of his wrist, a boulder on the ground was cleanly split into halves.
On the faces where it was cut, the surface was as smooth as a mirror.
After doing this, Wang Chong casually flicked his Wootz steel sword and returned it to its scabbard calmly.
“This, is the Wootz steel sword,” Wang Chong said impassively.
There were no words that could be more powerful than facts. No matter how excellently Wang Chong described the Wootz steel sword, there was nothing that was more convincing than a slice of his sword.
Standing opposite of Wang Chong, Li Siye was utterly astounded.
Wang Chong’s sword was extremely light. Li Siye could tell that the other party had barely used any strength behind his slash, and he hadn’t utilized his sword qi or Stellar Energy in the slash either!
Yet, the sword still went through the boulder easily, as if it was simply slicing through a blob of tofu.
Li Siye was no expert swordsmith, but that didn’t mean that he was ignorant. There was no doubt that the weapon in Wang Chong’s hands was anything but ordinary.
Looking at the smooth face of the boulder, Li Siye muttered to himself in shock, “What a sharp sword!”
As a soldier, he had seen many top-notch swords with astonishing sharpness wielded by the commanders and generals, but there were none that came close to the prowess displayed by the sword in Wang Chong’s hands.
In that instant, even Li Siye had no choice but to admit that he was moved.
On the battlefield, one wouldn’t face a lack of armored opponents. There were even those who wore armor forged out of Xuan metal, and ordinary weapons would hardly leave a dent in them.
Clashing with such opponents was extremely tiring and tricky, especially when it came to armored cavalry.
Only those who had engaged in the bloodshed of a battlefield would understand the true significance of a good weapon.
As a warrior, Li Siye had tried to seek a good weapon for himself too, but his humble background left him with no connections or financial ability to do so.
On top of that, he possessed a far stronger constitution than others. Ordinary weapons in the marketplace simply weren’t suitable for him. Thus, after some time, Li Siye eventually had no choice but to give up.
But the weapon in Wang Chong’s hands…
If he had such a weapon on the battlefield, he was confident that there would be no opponent who could stand in his way. He would be able to bring out the full extent of his ability and contribute better to his country.
“It’s a pity that your weapon is too short!” Li Siye muttered subconsciously under his breath.
But regardless of how sharp the weapon in Wang Chong’s hands were, it was simply too short at only three chi long, making it unsuitable for a man of his physique. Wielding a sword that was unsuitable for him would only end up restricting his movements instead.
“Hahaha, the length isn’t a problem at all. I can always have it specially crafted to your needs!” Wang Chong’s sharp ears caught wind of Li Siye’s muttering, and he roared heartily in laughter.
From the very start, Wang Chong had already considered this aspect.
The most ferocious of tiger should be paired with the sharpest of claws!
The reason why Wang Chong brought Li Siye over wasn’t to subordinate and restrict him, but to aid him in reaching heights he had never achieved in his previous life.
Not only would Wang Chong pair him with a Wootz steel sword perfect for his build, he would also have the sturdiest armor forged for him once Cousin Wang Liang shipped back the iron meteorites from overseas, as well as gift him the best of steeds!
The Invincible Great General of the previous life was valiant, but he lacked defensive capability. It had been a problem from the time he started off as a low-ranked soldier.
As an offensively-minded warrior, he would tend to exchange injury for injury, resulting in wounds heaping up on his body. By the time he was conferred as the Invincible Great General, his body was already filled with cuts and scars, and there was hardly a patch of unharmed skin on him.
His ultimate demise couldn’t be said to be unrelated to the traumas and internal damage he had accumulated over the years, either.
Thus, Wang Chong intended to make up for this weakness of his. On top of forging a top-notch Wootz steel sword and rallying an army for him, he would have the toughest armor that could withstand the attack of any enemies crafted for him, as well!
Li Siye’s eyes gleamed with desire for a short moment, but in the next, he woke up from his reverie.
“Hmph! Brat, do you expect me to believe you to be so kindhearted?” Li Siye glared at Zhang Xuan coldly.
There was no such thing as a free lunch in the world. How could Wang Chong possibly have him deployed over here from the northern barracks just to gift him a top-notch sword for nothing?
An unfounded solicitude could only have malicious intentions concealed behind it!
“Hahaha, you’re right! Indeed, I do have something to ask of you. As long as you accomplish several tasks for me, not only will I give you a Wootz steel sword, I will even have the sturdiest of armors forged for you! On top of that, I will even have you deployed to the barrack of your liking at the end of the matter!” Wang Chong chuckled.
He was aware of the current dissatisfaction Li Siye harbored towards him. His act of forcefully having Li Siye deployed here was indeed a little despicable from the other party’s point of view, so he hadn’t expected the other party to put his trust in him at the very start.
For the time being, he would have Li Siye stay by his side and slowly find ways to convince the other party to aid him in his mission.
“Hmph, as I expected!” Li Siye sneered coldly, having anticipated this.
“If my intelligence is accurate, you are only a Ten Man Squad Leader in Beiting at the moment, right? If you wish to climb to higher heights, you will have to sharpen your edge first. Think about it, you won’t waste much time following me for three months. Also, don’t you want to be deployed to the Western Protectorate Manor? If you still wish for it at the end of the three months, I will use my connections to make it happen!” Wang Chong offered with a smile.
“How did you know that?” Li Siye’s face warped in shock after hearing Wang Chong’s words.
He was a soldier of the Beiting Protectorate Manor, but his dream was to emulate the actions of Fu Jiezi and Ban Chao back then, and dominate the battlefields of the Western Regions.
However, the Western Regions were filled with the Hu, so the Western Protectorate Manor never recruited straight from the region. Most of the soldiers were mainly deployed there from the Western Regions Protectorate Manor and Beiting Protectorate Manor by the royal court.
Li Siye had reported at the Western Region Protectorate Manor, thinking that there would be a good chance that he would be deployed to the Western Protectorate Manor due to proximity to it. However, who knew that he would end up being deployed to Beiting instead!
Even though there were wars to be fought in Beiting, the region was mainly peaceful. The Eastern and Western Turkic Khaganates were not ready to wage war on Great Tang yet, so they were still mainly engaging in diplomacy with the Great Tang at the current point. As a result, there were only minor skirmishes in the area.
Thus, Li Siye wasn’t able to find any outlet to utilize the fearsome prowess he had trained hard for in Beiting, and it frustrated him deeply.
His current greatest wish was to get into the Western Protectorate Manor and fulfill his dreams at the war-torn Western Regions.
Wang Chong’s Wootz steel might have sparked his desire, but what had convinced him was the offer made at the very end.
“… Brat, you aren’t jesting with me, are you? Do you really wield the power to do so?” Li Siye gazed at Wang Chong intently.
“Since I was able to deploy you here from Beiting, do you think that it will be difficult for me to send you to the Western Regions?” Wang Chong chuckled softly.
Li Siye’s eyes lit up upon hearing those words. Indeed! Since the young man before him was able to drag him here from Beiting, surely sending him to the Western Regions wouldn’t be a problem.
So long as he could successfully get into the Western Protectorate Manor, tolerating what he would face in the next three months didn’t feel like much of a deal anymore
In the next instant, Li Siye’s gaze fell on the sword hanging by Wang Chong’s waist…
He couldn’t help but feel tempted.
All heroes adored a good weapon, and Li Siye was the same. However, with his current means, there was no way he could procure a weapon of the caliber Wang Chong had shown.
A sword that could easily split a boulder into two just by its sheer sharpness, how could Li Siye not be moved by the offer?
“Brat, tell me what do you intend me to do? I will just tell you straight up, don’t even dream of making me commit despicable acts for you! I, Li Siye, will never commit atrocious deeds for you!” Li Siye said with clear determination.
Even the most righteous of men wouldn’t turn away wealth and power, but they wouldn’t lower themselves to obtain those. A true man should live righteously and never turn his back on his conscience!
No matter how much Li Siye wanted to head to the Western Regions to build a name for himself, no matter how much he wanted the Wootz steel sword, he would never go against his principles for that!
“Don’t worry, I will never make you do such things!” Wang Chong reassured him confidently.
As the saying goes, “Better to fight upright than to beg with a bent back”. Even in his humblest moments, he still chose to adamantly stick with his principles.
This was what a true hero was!
Li Siye might not be the Invincible Great General he was in his previous life yet, but his words had already won Wang Chong’s admiration.
Even if Li Siye never achieved the heights he had in his previous life, his character was more than worthy of respect.
“Hmph!” Unaware of Wang Chong’s thoughts, Li Siye harrumphed coldly.
He had less than a favorable view of the nobles of Great Tang. He had known them as despicable men who oppressed the weak and engaged in decadent lifestyles.
“Speak, what do you want me to do?”
“You will know when,” Wang Chong chuckled softly.
How could he possibly know what he wanted Li Siye to do for him at the spur of the moment? The three months was just a means for him to keep the latter by his side for the time being!
He would just have to think of something later on.
Of course, Wang Chong had considered giving him a longer deadline, such as two or three years or something. However, considering the resentment Li Siye harbored towards him at the moment, that was probably out of question.
I will just have to think of something later on…, Wang Chong thought as he walked under Li Siye’s arm and into the Deflecting Blade Manor.
…This fellow was simply too tall!
Fu Jiezi was a figure from Western Han era. He was known for assassinating the King of Loulan Kingdom, thus breaking apart a collaboration them, the Xiongnu, and the Kucha.
Ban Chao is a figure in the Eastern Han era. He was a famous general who helped the Eastern Han empire gain control over the Tarim Basin and stabilize the Western Regions.
For reference purposes, the Western Han era (~late BC) came right before the Eastern Han era (~early AD). The Tang Dynasty was founded in AD618 and the current timeline should be around AD700+.