Chapter 1160: Bail
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97

After leaving the Heart Tempering Bridge, Zhang Xuan shook his head in disappointment. "Damn, I thought that it would at least be kind of challenging…"

He had expected a challenge from the Heart Tempering Bridge, but when he walked across it, he had realized that… it was truly nothing at all. He did not feel the slightest resistance. It did not even jolt his soul in the slightest.

All he wanted to do was temper his mental fortitude and try raising his Soul Depth, but this simple wish just would not come true for him. When he went to the Trial of Inner Demons, his inner demons refused to appear. When he walked over the Heart Tempering Bridge, he did not feel the slightest thing… Why did life have to be so difficult!

Shaking his head in pity, Zhang Xuan walked toward the room where Wu shi's voice originated from previously and knocked on the door.

Walking in, he saw Wu shi seated in the middle with a livid expression. He did not seem to be in a good mood at that moment.

Perplexed, Zhang Xuan asked, "What's wrong?"

When he parted with Wu shi earlier, the latter had still had a smile on his face. It had not even been an hour since then, so why would his mood suddenly sour so quickly?

Hearing Zhang Xuan's question, Wu shi rubbed his glabella and said, "The two men earlier came on the orders of Emperor Chu Tianxing to demand King Zhongqing's release, so I chased them out."

"The emperor wants to have King Zhongqing released?" Zhang Xuan frowned. "Does he not understand the crime of slandering a master teacher?"

While Zhang Xuan might not have been a master teacher of the Qingyuan Empire, and his rank had not reached 7-star, he was still the principal of a Master Teacher Academy, and there were a hundred thousand master teachers standing behind him! Considering that the other party had been caught slandering him, wasn't Emperor Chu Tianxing taking him too lightly by demanding King Zhongqing's release without even investigating the matter?

If such a thing were to be approved, what would become of the Master Teacher Pavilion's dignity.

"I sent my men to explain the matter to Emperor Chu Tianxing right after capturing King Zhongqing," Wu shi said grimly.

No matter what, King Zhongqing was the First King of the Qingyuan Empire. Considering that the Master Teacher Pavilion had sent out all its forces to apprehend the latter, it might sour the relations between the Master Teacher Pavilion and the royal family if he did not deal with this matter properly.

"You have already explained this matter, but Emperor Chu Tianxing still sent his men over to demand King Zhongqing's release? Isn't he being far too brazen?" Zhang Xuan frowned.

King Zhongqing's act of finding the ex-vice head of the Poison Hall to frame him was a truly major crime, and yet, Emperor Chu Tianxing, despite knowing that such actions would offend the Master Teacher Pavilion, still demanded King Zhongqing's release. Just what in the world was going through the minds of the nobles of the Qingyuan Empire?

Did they not understand that even if it was the royal family of a Conferred Empire, once they lost the protection of the local Master Teacher Pavilion, they would spiral into a cycle of endless decline and soon face destruction?

Wu shi shook his head and sighed deeply. "I'm not too sure either, but I think that he might have been emboldened by Vice Pavilion Master Tian…"

For the authoritative vice head of the Master Teacher Pavilion to work together with a King to accuse a master teacher without investigating the matter properly was truly a huge oversight. The future of a master teacher could very well have been ruined due to it.

The only reason Zhang Xuan was fine was because they had rushed over in time. Otherwise, held captive by the duo, he would have been no different from a prey on the chopping board. As long as the duo pulled some tricks, he could very well have found himself pinned with an accusation that he would never be able to cleanse himself of.

Such matters happened far too frequently.

It was simply too easy to slander and accuse another of a crime, especially when two of the most authoritative individuals in the Qingyuan Empire were working with one another.

"Un." Zhang Xuan nodded. He was just about to reveal his deduction when someone suddenly knocked on the door outside. Following which, a master teacher walked in and reported, "Teacher, Emperor Chu Tianxing of the Qingyuan Empire seeks an audience!"

"He has already arrived? Invite him in!" Frowning, Wu shi waved his hand.

He had chased away the envoys of Emperor Chu Tianxing just a few minutes earlier, but then the latter suddenly arrived personally. From the looks of it, it seemed like he had already been waiting outside for the results.

The master teacher backed out of the room, and not too long later, a middle-aged man dressed in a yellow robe walked in with widened strides.

Just like Wu shi, the middle-aged man's cultivation had reached Half-Leaving Aperture realm as well. His eyes carried an authoritative air reminiscent of a majestic tiger. With just a look, it was apparent that his unique aura had been cultivated by the many years he had spent in a lofty position.

"Wu shi!" As soon as the middle-aged man walked into the room, he quickly clasped his fist politely.

Although he was the emperor of the Qingyuan Empire, his standing still paled in comparison to Wu shi, a vice head of the Master Teacher Pavilion.

"Un. Take a seat." Wu shi gestured as he assessed the middle-aged man before him nonchalantly. "If Your Majesty is here to request King Zhongqing's release, I'll have to ask you not to waste your breath. Framing a master teacher is a grievous crime that our Master Teacher Pavilion is unable to pardon. I have already reported the matter to the headquarters, so if you continue insisting on this matter, I fear that the entire Qingyuan Empire might be implicated in this issue. Thus, I have to ask you to think twice before speaking."

Wu shi's words were not particularly sharp, but they were devoid of warmth. His tone had made it perfectly clear that there was no room for negotiation.

Instead of proceeding on to take a seat, Emperor Chu clasped his fist and spoke in an earnest tone. "It truly pains me to see King Zhongqing committing such foolishness, but Wu shi… you also know that I would have been killed long ago if not for him. Thus, regardless of how big a crime he has committed, I am willing to compensate the Master Teacher Pavilion for it. Thus, I beseech the Master Teacher Pavilion to give him and me an opportunity to apologize to Zhang shi personally and plead for his pardon…"

"Apologize? If apologies truly work, what would the world need our Master Teacher Pavilion for?" Wu shi waved his hands impatiently. "Send our guest out!"

"Yes!" The master teacher who had led Emperor Chu Tianxing in nodded before walking up to the latter. "Your Majesty, this way please!"

"This…" The expression on Chu Tianxing's face turned awkward upon hearing those words. He had prepared a long script to convince the other party of the matter, but it seemed like the other party was not intending to give him an opportunity to speak at all. Thus, sighing deeply, he turned around to leave the room. However, before he could step out of the room, a voice suddenly sounded.

"Wu shi, hold it for a moment. Didn't he say that he intends to compensate the Master Teacher Pavilion for the matter? I'm interested to hear how much he's willing to offer to save King Zhongqing!"

Emperor Chu Tianxing turned around and saw a young man in his twenties, dressed in the robe of a 6-star master teacher, seated not too far away from Wu shi.

The young man was none other than Zhang Xuan.

"Principal Zhang…" Not expecting Zhang Xuan to suddenly interject at this moment, Wu shi turned to look at the other party in bewilderment. A moment later, he closed his eyes and nodded before turning his gaze back to Emperor Chu Tianxing. "Since Zhang shi has already spoken on your behalf, I'll listen to your words."

"Zhang shi?"

Emperor Chu Tianxing swiftly understood what was going on. He quickly walked up to Zhang Xuan and bowed slightly. "King Zhongqing has truly erred in attempting to slander Zhang shi. As long as Zhang shi is willing to let bygones be bygones, I'm willing to build a new accommodation to house the students from the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy and unconditionally provide enough cultivation resources for a hundred years. On top of that, from this day forth, any student from Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy who drops by Qingyuan City will be able to receive a cultivation technique manual and a few small gifts as a token of our sincerity. We won't allow anyone of them to leave Qingyuan City empty-handed!"

Knowing that the other party was the principal of the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy, Emperor Chu Tianxing chose to center his offer around the academy instead.

As expected of the man who had the entire Qingyuan Empire in his grasp, he knew how to make an offer that was irresistible to the other party.

Naturally, as a principal of a Master Teacher Academy, Zhang Xuan's priority would be the welfare of his student, and to be honest, the terms that he had offered were truly generous.

With the backing of a Conferred Empire, it was only a matter of time before Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy became the top of the Four Great Master Teacher Academies.

"That's not enough," Zhang Xuan said nonchalantly.

"This…" Chu Tianxing was visibly taken aback by Zhang Xuan's refusal. However, he swiftly recovered and said, "Zhang shi, if you have any requests, feel free to raise them. As long as it's within the means of our royal family, we will accomplish it without the slightest frown!"

Zhang Xuan glanced at Emperor Chu Tianxing and said, "Simple. Add in another hundred concentrated high-tier spirit stones to your previous terms, and you can take back King Zhongqing right now."

He was currently severely lacking in cultivation resources. It was far more practical for him to receive concentrated high-tier spirit stones from the other party than to hold a King in custody.

In any case, he could easily get rid of King Zhongqing whenever he wanted to, so it did not matter whether the latter remained imprisoned or not.

"A hundred concentrated high-tier spirit stones?" Emperor Chu Tianxing widened his eyes in astonishment before a bitter smile surfaced on his lips. "Zhang shi, you must be joking. Even if we sold everything in our Imperial Treasury, we still would not be able to fork out that sum…"

In the first place, concentrated high-tier spirit stones were a severely lacking commodity in Qingyuan City. Even the Combat Master Hall, an organization that the Master Teacher Pavilion had devoted a large portion of its resources to, only had ten concentrated high-tier spirit stones in their reserves. No matter how wealthy the Qingyuan royal family was, there was no way it would be able to fork out ten times the sum in a single breath.

"Very well then, I shall give you a discount. Fifty concentrated high-tier spirit stones, and King Zhongqing will be yours to take away. This is my final offer, and if you can't fulfill that condition, I'll have to ask you to leave." Zhang Xuan waved his hand.

He also knew that the other party would be unable to afford 100 concentrated high-tier spirit stones. Nevertheless, he had chosen to ask for it so that he would have some room to bargain.

"This…" Chu Tianxing's lips twitched.

Fifty concentrated high-tier spirit stones still was not a sum that the Qingyuan royal family could afford.

Emperor Chu Tianxing contemplated for a long while before responding. "Zhang shi, to be honest with you, even with the ten-millennium reign of our Qingyuan royal family, we only have seventeen concentrated high-tier spirit stones at the moment… We did have quite a handful of it in the past, but most of them were bestowed to the princes and meritorious subjects. Is it possible for me to give all seventeen to you and make up for the rest with valuable medicinal herbs and ores?"

There was no way he would be able to fork out fifty concentrated high-tier spirit stones, but as long as the other party was willing, he would still be able to find substitutes for the rest.

"Alright then. Here are the ores and medicinal herbs I require, and as long as you are able to gather all of them, I can let King Zhongqing go with just seventeen concentrated high-tier spirit stones. Also, I require as many Saint 3-dan and Saint 4-dan cultivation technique manuals as possible. Make a copy of every single book in your library and pass them to me," Zhang Xuan said as he whipped out a brush and paper and swiftly penned down a list.

He was intending on making use of this opportunity to upgrade the Golden Origin Cauldron and Glacier Rain Sword. He already had the main materials, but he was still lacking a few supporting materials. If he were to search for them himself, who knew how long it would take before he was able to gather the required materials? It would be best if he could enlist Emperor Chu Tianxing's help for this matter.

"Very well." Emperor Chu Tianxing took the list and browsed through it. While there were some materials that seemed to be a relatively rare, with the prowess of an entire Conferred Empire, he should be able to gather all of them promptly. Thus, he accepted the request heartily.

After which, he flicked his wrist and passed a jade container over.

"Here are the seventeen concentrated high-tier spirit stones. Zhang shi, please take a look."

Zhang Xuan swiftly swept through the contents in the jade container and verified that the other party was not lying. Nodding, he stowed the jade container into his storage ring.

"Zhang shi and Wu shi, please give me a moment while I deal with the rest."

After saying those words, Emperor Chu Tianxing turned around and issued some instructions to his attendant.

As expected of the emperor of a Conferred Empire, his connections were truly astounding. In just two mere hours, the ores and medicinal herbs that Zhang Xuan had requested had been successfully gathered.

Even the books that Zhang Xuan had requested earlier were all stacked up neatly before him.

For those that they could not copy in time, the originals were brought over instead. All in all, there were roughly several hundred thousand books for Saint 3-dan and above ten thousand books for Saint 4-dan.

Zhang Xuan placed those items into his storage ring before nodding in satisfaction. "Alright, you may take King Zhongqing away now."

"Thank you, Zhang shi." Emperor Chu Tianxing quickly turned to Wu shi, and upon seeing the latter nod in agreement as well, he heaved a sigh of relief. After which, he followed a master teacher down to the underground prison, to where King Zhongqing was locked up.

As soon as Emperor Chu Tianxing left, Wu shi immediately turned a perplexed look to Zhang Xuan, uncomprehending of what the latter was up to. "Principal Zhang…"



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