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Finally, Jiang Chen came up with a division of spoils.
The sallow god would be given to Divine Kasyapa, who needed a divine servant in his own right.
He had a secret method with which to command the sallow cultivator, since his consciousness was much stronger. Once the link was in place, the other god wouldn’t be able to resist.
The gold and silver enforcers were extremely difficult to tame in comparison. Jiang Chen didn’t think himself capable of breaking their slavishness toward Lightford.
If he couldn’t enslave or convert them, there wasn’t much point in keeping them around. Better to refine them into usable materials to help the four sacred beasts ascend further.
Long Xiaoxuan and the Astral White Tiger would especially benefit. Jiang Chen believed that the dragon would break through to divine realm all the quicker, and the tiger wouldn’t be far behind.
The two primes were a little unhappy that Jiang Chen wasn’t planning on giving them anything, but Ziju Min thoroughly supported this gesture. Eternal had been baggage, rather than a contributor to the victory.
If the sacred land had been just a bit more useful, things wouldn’t have gotten nearly so out of hand.
To put it bluntly, without Huang’er’s presence and Kasyapa’s desire to protect his granddaughter, Eternal might very well be Lightford’s already.
What spoils could it ask for in this circumstance? What had it done to deserve anything?
Jiang Chen ignored the two primes’ dejection. He didn’t need to mind their opinion now.
Among the four prisoner gods, the only man who was worth talking to—who was worth convincing—was the bald cultivator.
He had essentially jogged in place from beginning to end. There was minimal loyalty to Lightford here.
“Jiang Chen.” Divine Kasyapa advised, “Daoist Yu Gong looks rather fierce, but he’s soft at heart. If you can win his allegiance, he will be a very capable helper. He won’t be able to handle a situation on his own, but he’s more than capable of helping you as a follower.”
Jiang Chen was hesitant. He felt like the bald cultivator had used only a fraction of his strength when fighting earlier, and said as much to his grandfather-in-law.
The divine laughed. “That’s due to his nature. That old cur Lightford misused him. He can only threaten him into service, but threats are of little effect when the one making them is so far away. The old bastard has acted unwisely in this respect. Though Yu Gong can sometimes seem pliable, he wouldn’t slack off like that otherwise.”
“Do you mean that I should earn this Yu Gong’s respect?”
“Of course, but a little coercion might be necessary as well. It’s hard to expect him to put his own life on the line, but he might very well be moved with the right motivation.”
Jiang Chen nodded. He had an idea of what to do.
Just as Kasyapa had said, Yu Gong was a fierce-looking but rather soft-hearted cultivator. Through both his own and the divine’s persuasions, the bald cultivator surrendered to Jiang Chen after some indecision. He was willing to accept Jiang Chen’s control over his consciousness.
Jiang Chen unscrupulously seeded Yu Gong’s mind with his commands. However, he made a promise with it.
“Yu Gong, you are a divine cultivator, and should be treated with the according respect. I’m seeding your consciousness only for a short probation period. Once you pass my evaluation, the seal in your consciousness will be removed. I recommend you not to overthink things and remain loyal. My consciousness is significantly stronger than you might think. If you harbor any ill will, I can crush you in a single instant.”
For someone like Yu Gong, it was better to outline both good and bad as clearly as possible.
The bald cultivator thought for a moment, then nodded. “Don’t worry, young lord. I don’t hold many people in high regard, but Divine Kasyapa is one of them. He views old man Lightford with no regard, yet has high hopes for you. That means you must be exceptional in some way. Plus, I’ve lost to you once already. Those enforcers were so arrogant before, but they were crushed in due time. It’s obvious that you are a much superior master.”
In a world at war, even an ordinary god wouldn’t necessarily be able to preserve himself. The assembly of cultivators into larger groups was a necessary direction.
A wise bird chose a good tree to roost in.
Yu Gong had originally hoped to do great things under Lightford, but the passage of time proved it to be a mere pipe dream.
Lightford’s methods were thoroughly underhanded, but even if Yu Gong stooped so low as to accept them, the old man wouldn’t give him any opportunities regardless.
The old man had many more subordinates closer to him. In terms of seniority, Yu Gong was near the end of the line to receive any benefits. To put it bluntly, he was little better than cannon fodder.
Rather than waste his life in that way, Yu Gong would rather join Jiang Chen instead. At least the young man reasonably accorded him dignity and material rewards, as well as a number of future promises with weight to them.
Despite Jiang Chen’s youth, Yu Gong felt like he’d met a wonderful master.
The two enforcers had a much grimmer fate before them. Jiang Chen wanted to refine them into life essence for his sacred beast friends to gorge on.
If these divine realm cultivators would make themselves into relics, they would be all the more nourishing. Alas, doing so required the cultivators’ active participation in the process.
The enforcers patently didn’t want to sacrifice their lives for the sake of their enemies. They were far too loyal to Lightford for that.
Even if they did surrender here, the old man could kill them in the next second from a dozen million miles out. So, if reusing was out of the option, recycling was the next order of affairs.
Jiang Chen was hardly a cruel man, but neither would he feel compassion toward the two enforcers. He would’ve suffered a miserable end if he had lost today.
As it was, he would forcibly extract life essence from the two enforcers. A considerable amount would go to waste, but there would still be a great deal left over.
These two gods were at the height of their vitality. Compared to gods who were at the point of decline in their lifespans, they carried much more energy and vigor.
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