Book 17, Indigo Prefecture – Chapter 54, Nowhere to Run
Beirut’s sudden departure caused the atmosphere at the banquet to become rather awkward. This celebratory banquet thus ended very early. Gislason and the other clan leaders bade farewell to Phusro, Bebe, and Linley, and then Linley’s group left as well.
Most of the Elders were gone now, while Forhan still stood there in the main hall.
“Forhan.” A cold, fierce voice.
Forhan raised his head. The Grand Elder was walking towards him, and she stared at him with a clear gaze. Through divine sense, she asked, “Forhan, I ask you, did those eight enemy Elders go kill Linley because of you?”
“No!” Forhan didn’t hesitate at all. “Mother, I definitely am not a traitor! Mother, you must believe me!”
The Grand Elder stared at him, but since Forhan had decided to put on an act, how could he let her see anything amiss?
The Grand Elder seemed to relax slightly. In a slightly softer voice, she said, “Fine. I believe you. As long as you aren’t the traitor, the clan won’t permit any outsiders to kill you.” After speaking, the Grand Elder left as well.
Within that cold and gloomy underground hall.
Forhan was there by himself. “Judging from Beirut’s words, it seems as though he really is certain that I am the traitor? Can it be that a Sovereign truly was watching? But although Sovereign’s are high and mighty, they have their own personalities and human characteristic. They’ll often wander about as well. Perhaps one really did find out.”
Forhan was currently pondering nonstop.
“Hmph. Who cares if a Sovereign found out or not. How could a mighty Sovereign intervene personally in a minor matter like this?” Forhan made up his mind. “As long as I confidently assert that I am not a traitor, then that means I am not!”
Forhan only had to do one thing; deny it, no matter what!
Within that gorge in the Skyrite Mountains. Beirut hadn’t gone to live in the place which the Four Divine Beasts clan had arranged, instead electing to live in the gorge, with Linley and Bebe as his neighbors.
Within Linley’s living room. Linley, Bebe, Phusro, Beirut were present and seated, while Delia was outside with Wade.
“Grandpa, since you and the Sovereign already know everything and know that Forhan is the traitor, just go ahead and kill him.” Bebe snorted. “I’ve never liked that Forhan.”
Linley laughed, “Bebe, deep within the hearts and minds of the clan leaders of the Four Divine Beasts clan is a certain pride. If Forhan is killed without any evidence of his guilt, although the clan leaders and Elders might not immediately have a falling out with Beirut over this, they will remember it and harbor hatred in their hearts.”
“Right.” Beirut nodded and laughed. “Don’t be fooled by how respectful those four clan leaders act towards me. They are, after all, the sons and daughter of four Sovereigns. In their hearts, they are still quite prideful. I can’t go too far.”
Linley felt rather grateful towards Beirut.
Actually, why would Beirut care about if the Four Divine Beasts clan hated him or not? The reason Beirut was acting in this manner was because he was worried that Linley would be ostracized afterwards, and that his life in the clan would become miserable.
“Lord Beirut, you said that in a few months, you would make it so that Forhan would have nothing more to say for himself. What’s the plan?” Linley immediately asked.
“Right, Grandpa, what is your plan?”
“Haha…” Beirut laughed.
Phusro laughed as well. “Bebe, have you forgotten that a year ago, you met your grandmother in Meer City? What did you acquire on that visit?”
“The soul slice fragment. What about it?” Bebe said, puzzled.
Beirut laughed, “That soul slice fragment was delivered by an old friend of mine. I had your grandmother give it to you because I was busy accompanying my friend, so I didn’t have time to go find you.”
“That Forhan is a descendant of the Azure Dragon clan. With that innate ability protecting him, I’m unable to forcibly hypnotize him. However, that old friend of mine can.” Beirut was completely confident.
A supreme expert capable of making soul slice fragments?
“If this person is willing to help.” Linley rejoiced in his heart. “There’s no way Forhan will be able to escape!”
“This time, for Delia’s sake, I had to hurry over here. I was worried that my old friend might have left, but just now, I managed to reach him. That friend of mine is still in Indigo Prefecture. He’ll arrive here in a few months.” Beirut laughed calmly.
“Grandpa, are you sure about this?” Bebe said, rather worried. “Forhan has the protection of his innate ability.”
“Absolutely sure!” Beirut said.
Hearing this, Linley felt jubilant, but at the same time, he sighed to himself: “The friends which a supreme expert like Lord Beirut makes…are all supreme experts as well. Even someone like Forhan, protected by his innate ability, will still be mesmerized. What an amazing level of accomplishment does one have to be at, to be so skilled with regards to the soul?”
They waited leisurely, but as the days passed, the news that the Lord Prefect had accused Forhan of being a traitor quickly spread throughout the entire Skyrite Mountains. Quite a few clansmen were secretly furious, feeling the Lord Prefect to be abusing his power.
In the blink of an eye, several months passed. On this day, Linley and Delia were currently playing with little Wade in front of their house.
Wade was already able to walk wobblingly.
While supporting her son, Delia suddenly raised her head. “Linley, news about that affair from last time has spread quite far. Even the people in our valley know about it. Just now, when I was taking Wade out for a walk, I heard clansmen from the other branches in our valley say that the Lord Prefect of Indigo Prefecture was sullying Elder Forhan. But of course, there were others who said that the reason Forhan refused to accept the hypnotism was due to fear borne out of guilt…still, the majority seem to support Forhan.”
“Don’t worry about it. When that expert comes, all shall be made clear.” Linley said, then half-knelt. “Wade, you can do it. Take a few more steps. Come to your father.”
Wade beamed, his dimply mouth curving upwards as he tottered forwards with small steps. Finally, he made it to Linley’s arms.
“Father.” Wade said sweetly.
“Come, give me a kiss.” Linley said dotingly.
While holding his son, Linley glanced sideways at Delia. Just a few months ago, he had been lost amidst his despair. But now, everything had changed. All because of Beirut. “I will never, ever forget the kindness he has shown me.”
Just as Linley’s little three-person household was in the midst of their joy…
“Beirut!” A clear voice echoed in the air above the Skyrite Mountains.
“Eh?” Linley and Delia all raised their heads, surprised.
Beirut, Phusro, and Bebe immediately flew out, and Beirut laughed towards Linley, “Linley, that good friend of mine is here. Let’s go. It is time for Forhan’s true face to be revealed.”
Linley and Delia, carrying their son, followed them out of the great gorge.
In the air above the Skyrite Mountains. A single, solitary figure hovered there in mid-air, his entire body covered with a bluish-black robe. His wavy, bluish-black hair was unbound, and his thick black eyebrows were shaped like two swords.
He just stood there, standing in the air above the Skyrite Mountains.
Not a single one of the patrolling warriors dared to go close to him. Gislason, leading a number of Elders, hurried over.
“Patriarch, this strange fellow flew there, shouted ‘Beirut’, then stood there without moving. We wanted to shoo him off…but all of our brothers who approached him lost their consciousness and plummeted to the ground. Only after landing did they regain consciousness.” The captain of the patrolling warriors hurriedly reported.
Gislason, hearing this, couldn’t help but frown.
Gislason immediately flew over and said sonorously, “I am Patriarch Gislason of the Azure Dragon clan. Might I ask who you are?”
Only now did this strange fellow open his eyes, glancing sideways as Gislason approached. Gislason couldn’t but feel his heart tremble. He actually had the feeling as though within the strange man’s eyes were a pair of illusory serpents.
“Gislason?” The strange man said calmly. “I’m waiting for Beirut.”
Gislason frowned. Although the person in front of him was very powerful, Gislason wasn’t afraid of him…‘soul defense’ was Gislason’s strong point. After all, he had a perfect, undamaged soul-protecting Sovereign artifact.
“Then please come to my place to rest while we await the Lord Prefect.” Gislason laughed.
“No need.” The strange man said.
“Haha…Dunnington [Dan’ning’dun], you were rather slow.” A loud laugh rang out, and Beirut’s form appeared in the distance. In but a moment, he arrived. As for Linley and Bebe, they flew over from behind as well.
“Beirut.” The strange fellow began to laugh, immediately going to greet him.
Linley and Delia flew over as well. They couldn’t help but look carefully at this person. But as Linley looked at him…he felt as though the wavy hair of this strange person had transformed into countless tiny serpents.
“Eh?” Linley was shocked. “What a strange feeling.”
“Lord Prefect, this is Dunnington? The legendary ‘Dunnington’ of the Chaotic Sea?” Gislason said disbelievingly.
The Infernal Realm had quite a few legendary figures, which even the likes of Gislason had only heard of, not met. As for this Dunnington, in the Infernal Realm, he was a legendary figure on the same level as Beirut, or perhaps who had even surpassed Beirut!
“Right.” Beirut laughed. “This friend of mine is the number one expert of the Chaotic Sea, aside from the Chaotic Sea Sovereign. Dunnington!”
The Infernal Realm was divided into five continents and two seas. The ‘Chaotic Sea’ was the largest region, with the most experts. Dunnington’s name, for countless years now, had reverberated in the Infernal Realm.
Dunnington was strongest in the Edicts of Death.
Each of the Seven Elemental Laws all had their own specialties and mysteries, which were all divided up clearly and thus could be fused clearly. But the Four Edicts were different. The Four Edicts didn’t have specific ‘profound mysteries’; as to whether or not a person had mastered enough of them to become a God or a Highgod, the natural Laws themselves would judge.
Nobody could be certain as to whether or not Dunnington had reached the stage of being a Paragon or not.
If one was to discuss who, in the entire Infernal Realm, had the most impressive accomplishments with regards to the soul, the vast majority would say the name, ‘Dunnington’. A freakishly, monstrously powerful figure.
In describing Beirut’s power, one could use the phrase ‘sudden rise to prominence’ in describing the manner in which he proved his power through blood-soaked battle.
But the power of Dunnington…had been publicly acknowledged through countless years through countless trials.
Many people believed that Dunnington had already reached the utter pinnacle of power in the Edicts of Death and had become a Paragon. But of course, Dunnington himself wouldn’t tell anyone…and there was no way for others to be completely certain.
“Gislason, go arrange for Forhan to be found and brought here.” Beirut laughed.
Gislason already could guess what was going on, but he still instructed that Forhan be brought over.
Beirut and Dunnington flew together, side by side, while Gislason, Phusro, Linley, Bebe, and Delia followed from behind.
“Phusro, this Dunnington, the number one figure of the Chaotic Sea aside from the Sovereign…he is very strong?” Linley asked through divine sense. Linley simply hadn’t trained for long enough; he didn’t know anything about some of the legendary figures of the Infernal Realm.
“Very strong? Are you joking?” Phusro sent back through divine sense. “This Dunnington is probably a Highgod Paragon. You tell me, is he strong?”
Linley was badly startled. He couldn’t help but take a closer look at Dunnington. While flying, Dunnington’s long, wavy, bluish-black hair billowed casually in the wind, but as it did, it gave off a very strange impression, as though each strand of hair had turned into a long serpent, or arrows of ice…
As he stared at Dunnington, Linley felt his head grow dizzy.
“How terrifying.” Linley was secretly shocked.
“Boss, I keep on having the feeling as though the robe which Dunnington is wearing is actually a strange monster of the deep sea. So strange.” Bebe sent through divine sense. It wasn’t just Linley who felt strange things when looking at Dunnington.
Within the main hall of Patriarch Gislason’s residence. Everyone sat down. Linley raised his head, looking towards the outside. The Grand Elder was walking in. “Elder Brother, which person was the one who had been loudly shouting for the Lord Prefect?”
Gislason rose to his feet, introducing, “Little Sis, this gentleman is Mr. Dunnington of the Chaotic Sea.”
The Grand Elder was shocked.
“Mr. Dunnington.” The Grand Elder said in a friendly manner. They addressed Beirut as ‘Lord Prefect’, because they felt grateful towards him for his kindness. As for others, even if they were as powerful as Beirut, they would at most address others as ‘Mr.’.
As soon as the Grand Elder sat down, footsteps rang out from outside as well.
“Haha, they finally came.” Beirut laughed.
“Which one is it?” Dunnington spoke out calmly.
“The one with the yellow hair.” Beirut said. Forhan and several other Elders walked in together. When Forhan entered the main hall and saw Beirut, the look on his face turned rather ugly.
“Oh?” Dunnington said.
Twin illusory blurs shot out from Dunnington’s eyes, which suddenly surrounded and enveloped Forhan. Forhan wasn’t able to react at all, and Linley’s eyes couldn’t help but light up. “Dunnington’s actions appeared simple, but there definitely must have been a struggle within Forhan’s mind.”
Forhan’s facial muscles twitched slightly, but then he calmed down.
“All done.” Dunnington laughed, turning his gaze towards Beirut. “The innate ability of this Azure Dragon clan really is formidable. I had to use some real power.”
Beirut laughed back. “Stop showing off and help me interrogate him.”
“What are you doing?” The Grand Elder said frantically.
“Just hypnotism.” Beirut laughed calmly. “You can see for yourselves if he is innocent or not”
Gislason gave the Grand Elder a meaningful look. Since the hypnotism had already been used, then they might as well let this thing come to a conclusion. “Hmph.” The Grand Elder let out a low snort, but in the end, still sat down. “I want to see what you’ll have to say for yourself after it is proven that my son is no traitor.”
“That’s Beirut’s responsibility, not mine.” A hint of a smile appeared on Dunnington’s face.
“Forhan, tell me, were you the one who leaked information about Linley’s whereabouts to the eight great clans, resulting in the eight Elders attacking Linley?” Dunnington said calmly.
Immediately, everyone in the hall, including Gislason, the Grand Elder, the various other Elders, and Linley all looked nervously towards Forhan. Linley stared at the dazed Forhan. “If it wasn’t him, this will be very awkward.”
A calm look was on Forhan’s face, and his eyes were lifeless. He said mechanically, “Yes!”
The voice echoed in the hall. Instantly, everyone fell silent. The Grand Elder wore her customary silver mask, and there was no way to see the look on her face…but disbelief could be seen filling her eyes.
“Did you hear that?” Beirut laughed as he looked towards the Grand Elder and Gislason.
“How is that possible?” The Elders in the hall were all stunned.
“Ask him….ask him why!” The Grand Elder’s entire body was trembling. The Grand Elder didn’t want to believe it. She truly didn’t understand…why had her son come to this decision? When a person was hypnotized, they wouldn’t tell any lies. This was an ironclad rule.
Dunnington continued, “Why did you leak the information and want Linley to be killed?”
“He deserves to die!”
Forhan said mechanically, “He is a junior descendant of the clan. By what right does he hold the Azure Dragon ring, the Sovereign artifact of our ancestor!?”
“Sovereign artifact?” Dunnington couldn’t help but look at Linley with surprise. The other Elders all were looking towards Linley in surprise as well.
Forhan continued, “Acquiring the Sovereign artifact was one thing, but my son lost his most powerful divine clone because of him. And he’s just a mere God…and yet he’s already so powerful. When he becomes a Highgod, his status in the clan will definitely be higher than mine. I, Forhan, look up at him and live beneath him, day in and day out? This sort of life is nothing but torture…and so he must die.”
“A God?” Quite a few Elders in the hall all looked towards Linley, astonished.
They didn’t know Linley was a God! They also didn’t know that Linley had a Sovereign artifact.
“So that’s what this was all about. So that’s what this was all about.” The Grand Elder stood up, murmuring softly.
The Grand Elder’s body suddenly appeared next to Forhan’s. With a vicious palm blow, she smashed down at Forhan’s head. With a ‘bang’ sound, Forhan’s head exploded, then two divine sparks fell out as well.
Linley sucked in a sudden breath. “The Grand Elder…”
The entire hall instantly fell silent. Even Beirut and Dunnington stared at the Grand Elder in shock.
“All the clones of those who betray the clan are to be put to death!” The Grand Elder said in a low voice. Her eyes turned moist…but in an instant, they dried out.