Chapter 224: The Newest Main Quest
Translator: Sparrow Translations Editor: Sparrow Translations
Lin Feng stroked his chin as he pondered over the newest Main Quest of the System. He thought to himself, “It seems easy, but judging by the System’s tendency to give misleading hints, why do I feel like something’s just not right?”
Main Quest 2.1 — Spread your name, expand your influence.
Quest Description: Congratulations to the Host for successfully opening the sect and officially beginning the journey to build it up.
But when compared to the entire world out there, the sect is still a tiny fledgling. The Host still has a long way to go before the sect can be established as a renowned and respectable organisation.
From today onwards, the Host would have to improve the sect’s basic infrastructural facilities and extend the sect’s influence throughout the entire Grand Celestial World to achieve a Worldwide Popularity score of 80 and above.
Time Limit: 10 years. If the Quest is not completed within the given time limit, the Host will be killed immediately.
“Worldwide Popularity?” Lin Feng blinked and took out his Popularity System. After examining it for a short while, he started to frown.
He first looked at his previous territory at the Northern Foothills of Mount Kunlun.
Half a year ago, after the Spiritual Conference of Hanhai at Shazhou City, Lin Feng’s popularity score at the Northern Foothills of Mount Kunlun was already 85 points.
But even after all the commotion of opening a sect, Lin Feng’s popularity in the region only increased by a mere 5 points to reach a total of 90.
This was not even close to the speed at which the sect’s popularity was skyrocketing at previously
Lin Feng mulled over it for a moment. “Soaring to greater heights after achieving success is always harder than starting something from scratch. It looks like the higher your popularity is, the harder it is for it to grow.”
Lin Feng’s popularity as an individual was separated from the sect’s popularity as a whole and compared to his current individual score of 90, the sect’s popularity in the Northern Foothills of Mount Kunlun was much lower at 75.
Lin Feng then recalled that his sect’s popularity during the Spiritual Conference of Hanhai was only a meagre 50 points.
Such a drastic increase could definitely be attributed to the recent battle on the barren plains outside Shazhou City, where Xiao Yan and his comrades fended off an opponent in the Nascent Soul stage.
“My personal popularity can raise the sect’s overall popularity, since I’m its Sect Master and Grandmaster after all, while my disciples’ achievements can also contribute to the overall score.”
Lin Feng then realized, after examining the scores for the areas beyond the Northern Foothills of Mount Kunlun, that both his individual popularity and the sect’s popularity were considerably lower everywhere else.
Some areas did show more optimistic scores, probably thanks to the battle before the Sect-Opening Ceremony.
When Yang Tonghui and the others who attended the Sect-Opening Ceremony returned to their respective sects, they spread the word of the battle in their home regions, which helped Lin Feng and his sect gain a stronger reputation.
But in spite of this, Lin Feng’s personal popularity and the sect’s overall popularity were still low when looking at the entire Grand Celestial World, and there was still a considerable gap to close to achieve the Main Quest’s requirement of 80 points.
Lin Feng sighed, “There’s still a long way to go!”
What would be beneficial for increasing one’s popularity?
He could attempt to accomplish a grand feat that no one has ever achieved before and amazed the world.
Or, he could rely on someone else’s repute. One always sees further when standing on the shoulders of giants.
Lin Feng carefully pondered for a bit before exiting the Popularity System and went on to check the newest special reward given by the System for completing the Sect-Opening Ceremony.
It was an umbrella, a big black umbrella.
As he held the handle, Lin Feng felt the canopy of the umbrella between his fingers and thought, “This may be useful, but if the user isn’t careful, this may become counter-productive. Using it requires the utmost attention to detail.”
Then, an idea flashed in his mind, and Lin Feng slowly cracked a smile as warm and bright as the springtime Sun.
With a wave of his hand, two balls of fire dropped to the ground and morphed into two human figures.
Both had similar appearances, each with a skinny and feeble body, a pointy mouth with the jaw frills of a monkey, a purplish black face with blushed cheeks, a pair of small ears pointed upwards, and a bald head without a single strand of hair.
One looked like a teenager while the other looked like a middle-aged man.
They were the Fire Crow Young Master and the Fire Crow Demonic Commander whom Lin Feng captured alive previously when he first arrived in the Kunlun mountains to search for Mount Yujing.
Both bird demons have morphed into their human forms. As they faced Lin Feng, they just stood there obediently, having lost all their bad temper, and not even daring to breathe too loudly.
Lin Feng looked at them and said, “Since you had offended me previously, I imprisoned you for a period of time as punishment.”
The Fire Crow Demonic Commander nodded vigorously, “I was rude then. I had offended you, Senior. Please forgive me.”
He hesitated for a bit, glanced at the Fire Crow Young Master, then said, “Our clan’s young master is still young and immature, please be understanding. The Master of our clan only has this one child and is now separated from his only flesh and blood, I beg you to show some pity and mercy.”
The Fire Crow Young Master’s antlers haven’t been polished, but he knew clearly that even his father, the Fire Crow King, was an insignificant small fry in Lin Feng’s eyes. He didn’t dare to fight back and just bowed submissively before Lin Feng, “I was immature then. Senior, please show some mercy and spare me this time round.”
Lin Feng grinned, “Looks like you’ve learnt from your mistakes. I don’t enjoy killing others, so I’ll let you off this time, but I need you to convey a message for me.”
The Fire Crow Young Master and the Fire Crow Demonic Commander were elated to hear this, and the young master quickly asked, “Does Senior Lin have things that you wish to discuss with my father?”
“I have nothing to say to him.” Lin Feng glanced at the Fire Crow Young Master, “I want you to bring a message to the Golden Crow Grand Sage.”
“The Grandmaster?” The Fire Crow Young Master and the Fire Crow Demonic Commander were both stunned, but as they looked at each other, neither dared to probe the matter further and both lowered their heads. “Please tell us the message, we’ll definitely convey it for you.”
Lin Feng lifted his finger, and a cloud of purple Qi dropped down in front of the two demons. He said, “Take this with you and give it to the Golden Crow Grand Sage.”
The Fire Crow Young Master kept the purple cloud diligently and departed Mount Yujing with the Fire Crow Demonic Commander into space.
Lin Feng gazed across the space and watched as the duo faded into two black specks before eventually vanishing over the horizon. He smiled, “Don’t disappoint me.”
Tianjing City, Capital of the Great Zhou Empire.
At the central meridian of Tianjing City, stood a towering palace facing south. It was the Imperial Palace of the Great Zhou Empire, the heart of the entire nation.
Inside the palace, all the walls and rooms were lined with layers upon layers of lacquered yellow tiles, which not only made the entire palace look incredibly luxurious, but also incomparably majestic, like a celestial palace that descended from the heavens to the mortal world.
In the middle of the palace, stood the magnificent main hall constructed purely from white jade. The main hall shimmered with a scarlet glow that looked like it could fend off all evil.
In the east wing of the main hall, in a warm, quaint room, a middle-aged man sat upright on a grand chair.
Anyone who saw the man would gain the wrong impression that he was holding up the room – that instead of the big white pillars at the side of the room that two people could wrap their arms around, it was the man sitting in front of them who was holding up the ceiling.
This man not only held up the room, but also the entire main hall, even the skies, the earth, and the heavens.
He wore gorgeous clothes and a purplish golden crown, he had partially white temples, and his hands were as white and spotless as jade, which made him seem like he yielded unlimited power.
He was the pillar of the Great Zhou Empire, the Marquis of Xuanji, Zhu Hongwu.
The large table in front of him was laid with the various memorials presented by the respective state governments of the Great Zhou Empire. He needed to arrange them and add his own inputs before presenting them to the Zhou Emperor Liang Pan. This was his responsibility as the Grand Advisor of the Great Zhou Empire.
After he placed another memorial down, Zhu Hongwu lifted his head up and stared at the door, with his dilated pupils as black as the cosmic galaxies. “Come in.”
An old eunuch entered the room. He seemed meek and subservient, and said very gently, “His Majesty summons the Grand Advisor to the main hall to discuss some matters.”
Although he was very servile in front of Zhu Hongwu, the mana emanating from his body was incredibly terrifying. After all, he was a great cultivator in the middle level of the Nascent Soul stage, and a grand eunuch only second to Mei Wulang in the palace hierarchy.
But in front of Zhu Hongwu, he was as obsequious as a lowly slave.
Zhu Hongwu nodded, “I understand.” He put the memorial down and stood up.
As Zhu Hongwu rose from his seat, the old eunuch momentarily felt as if the skies and earth all trembled in that instant.
Under the escort of the old eunuch, Zhu Hongwu left his chamber in the side hall and arrived at the main hall, following gingerly behind the eunuch as he slowly stepped inside.
Inside the main hall, a middle-aged man wearing a Nine Dragons Golden Crown and dressed in gorgeous imperial robes sat upright on the Dragon Throne.
At first glance, the Dragon Throne looked as if it was above the main hall facing south, but upon a closer look, one would realize that the throne was isolated from the rest of the main hall, residing a separate space-time.
The man sitting on the throne had a face that resembled white jade, with faint traces of old age yet not showing any signs of weakness. Instead, these traces made him look even more dignified, with an aura that could control everything under the heavens. He was the Zhou Emperor, Liang Pan.
Beneath Liang Pan, Mei Wulang stood there decorously, while Yan Mingyue sat quietly on a round stool, merely acknowledging Zhu Hongwu’s arrival with a simple nod.
As he saw Zhu Hongwu enter the hall, Liang Pan grinned joyfully, “Please be seated.”
Upon his orders, a little eunuch brought a wooden stool over. Zhu Hongwu thanked him and sat down.
“Hongwu, the son you bore with Lady Meng, Zhu Yi, has really surprised me.” Liang Pan seemed very jovial, addressing Zhu Hongwu by his given name, and conversing as if they were close friends, which showed the intimate relationship between the Emperor and his advisor.
Zhu Hongwu replied calmly, “I wouldn’t dare to accept Your Majesty’s compliments.”
“This definitely isn’t undeserved praise.” Liang Pan waved his hand. “Lady Yan and Wulang have already explained the situation to me in detail, and indeed, as Lady Yan had mentioned previously, your son’s master is certainly no ordinary person.”
“Wulang, explain the situation to Hongwu.”
Zhu Hongwu turned to Mei Wulang and Yan Mingyue, “Looks like Zhang Hai returned empty-handed.”
Mei Wulang replied respectfully, “The Leader of the Celestial Sect of Wonders is even stronger than we imagined.” He then recounted everything that he had witnessed for Zhu Hongwu.
Zhu Hongwu nodded and said composedly, “Based on what you said, the Celestial Sect of Wonders bears greater strength than the Aeolus Sect and the Sword of Radiance Sect. They certainly wouldn’t be easy to eradicate.”
“But, although they boast outstanding advantages, they also bear fatal flaws.”