The air of the Soul Stealing Realm was clearly different compared to the outside world. They passed through a couple of black Soul Halls before Qing Ying came to a stop. Then, she soared fifty meters into the air and landed on a dark, floating island, Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er following closely behind her.
The space of this place was dark and silent. It was like touching a dark, eternal sky.
The floating island was about fifty kilometers long. It was completely empty aside from the three of them.
Qing Ying finally turned around and said, “This is the Soul Sky. My master has ordered me to bring you here. She will be with you shortly.”
Qianye Ying’er looked around and narrowed her eyes a little. The ghost of a smile flitted across her face. “I have heard stories about the barren lands of the Northern Divine Region since long ago, but I didn’t expect this wretchedness to spread to the king realms as well. This is an eye-opening experience alright.”
“Watch your words, Yun Qianying.” Away from prying eyes, Qing Ying finally stopped hiding her disgust for Qianye Ying’er. “This isn’t your Eastern Divine Region anymore. Don’t think you can look down on the Soul Stealing Realm just because you injured fourth sister! This is not a place where the likes of you gets to throw a tantrum!”
The gleam in Qianye Ying’er’s eyes turned dangerous and playful. “That’s not up to you to say…”
“Quiet!” Yun Che suddenly silenced Qianye Ying’er before adding, “We’ll wait.”
Qianye Ying’er raised her eyebrow, turned halfway toward him and asked, “Since when are you a patient man? If you’re not forceful enough, how can you possibly…”
“I said we’ll wait!” Yun Che’s tone grew heavier.
“...” Qianye Ying’er looked like she wanted to say something, but in the end she simply snorted and looked away. At this moment, she wasn’t willing to see him or speak to him.
Qianye Ying’er’s attitude toward the Witches was terrible to say the least. Yun Che knew this. It was evident from the moment they met their first Witch, Chanyi.
He also knew that the reason she hated them so much was because of her own circumstances. She was the proud Brahma Monarch Goddess, and she was brought down to the level of a man’s attachment and a devil person of the Northern Divine Region. That was why she hated anyone whose status, power or both was close to her previous self… she wanted nothing more than to make them fall down to her level.
Clearly, the Witches fell under this category.
No one spoke for a time, but the silence didn’t endure too long before Yun Che abruptly looked in a certain direction. Qianye Ying’er was the same as well.
What a powerful aura!
The air vibrated slightly as a woman clad in darkness slowly walked down from the sky. It was almost as if the air itself was solid enough to support her footing. Eventually, she stopped beside Qing Ying before shooting a dark and imposing look at Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er.
The woman wore black, and her face was hidden behind a black fog just like all the other Witches. Her body was unusually slender; so slender that it was almost a match for Qianye Ying’er herself.
“Third sister.” Qing Ying bowed her head slightly in greeting. Her words also revealed who the newcomer was.
She was Ye Li, the third Witch. She was the better of all Witches except the Great Witch.
The reason Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er could tell who she was was because she was clearly stronger than the fourth Witch, Yao Die.
Yao Die was one small realm stronger than Qianye Ying’er, but despite her superiority she failed to make Qianye Ying’er feel too threatened at the time. This woman though... Qianye Ying’er could clearly sense that she was impossible to beat for now.
However, her aura wasn’t as strong as Qianye Ying’er at her peak, so she couldn’t possibly be the Great Witch, Jie Xin and Jie Ling. That left only one possibility.
The Third Witch, Ye Li watched Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er for a while, but it was clear that neither of them were planning to speak up or acknowledge her arrival. So she turned to Qing Ying and asked, “Are they Yun Che and the Brahma Monarch Goddess of the Eastern Divine Region?”
Qing Ying nodded. “Even you have come home this quickly? Master’s announcement must be very important.”
Ye Li suddenly focused her gaze on Qianye Ying’er. Her tone was harsh and direct. “Are you the one who hurt Yao Die!?”
“That’s me.” Qianye Ying’er looked at her and smiled. “If the man beside me wasn’t an appreciator of beautiful women, I could’ve killed her as well.”
The temperature behind Ye Li’s eyes dropped several degrees lower. “I will not go against my master’s order and attack you in this place and time. But we will take revenge for Yao Die and Chanyi one day!”
Ye Li’s threat definitely wasn’t an empty one. The Nine Witches were “created” by the Devil Queen’s own hands, so in a sense they were closer than sisters.
To wound or humiliate one of them was to wound or humiliate them all!
“Very good.” The Third Witch was intimidating, but all her threat managed to do was awaken a mixture of excitement and madness in Qianye Ying’er’s heart. “There is nothing more I want than a sharpening stone to test my strength on right now! Do not disappoint me like that useless butterfly!”
“Useless butterfly? Heh, are you talking about me?”
A quiet, cold voice came from afar. A pair of women dressed in yellow and blue respectively appeared in the sky and landed before Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er. Both women wore a frigid expression on their faces.
The woman on the left was the fourth Witch Yao Die. She took quite a bit of damage yesterday, so her aura was a bit weak right now.
The woman on the right wore a blue dress that made her look like she was bathing in pure, bluish water. Her aura was a lot gentler than the rest of the Witches.
In fact, even her gaze on Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er was missing the pressure and oppressiveness that was present in every other Witch. She looked as calm and gentle as water.
She was the sixth Witch, Lan Ting.
Ye Li took a look at Yao Die’s injuries before frowning deeply. She had heard that Yao Die was injured, but she hadn’t known how serious it was until now. She asked in a chilly tone, “Yao Die, should I put her in shackles?”
“No.” But Yao Die shook her head evenly. “I lost fair and square, so I have nothing to say. However, the one who defeated me isn’t this so-called Lady Goddess, so she certainly doesn’t have the right to taunt me!”
Yao Die stared at Yun Che for a moment before looking away.
“Third sister, fourth sister… Aiya! Fifth sister and sixth sister are here as well?”
The youthful voice sounded very happy and excited. It was as clear as the sound of pearls hitting the ground. The owner of the voice hadn’t shown up yet, but her voice alone was enough to create the lively image of a cheerful girl in everyone’s mind.
The clear voice quickly chased away the tension in the atmosphere. Soon, a girl who looked as delicate as a fairy landed hastily on the ground.
The girl looked about the same size as Cai Zhi. She probably liked lustrous gems and tassels a lot, because her white dress below the waist was covered in them. Even her shoes were white and shiny.
Although her face was hidden like everyone else’s, the impression she gave off was that of an innocent girl not older than sixteen.
She was the eighth Witch of the Soul Stealing Realm, Yu Wu.
And she wasn’t alone. A light gold figure landed next to her after Yu Wu made it to the ground, and it was an aura both Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er had identified immediately.
Third Witch Ye Li, Fourth Witch Yao Die, Fifth Witch Qing Ying, Sixth Witch Lan Ting, Eighth Witch Yu Wu and Ninth Witch Chanyi… six of the nine Witches had shown up in the blink of an eye!
They could only have gathered here this quickly because of Chi Wuyao.
Neither Yun Che nor Qianye Ying’er had expected this level of decisiveness from the Devil Queen. It went completely against her show of reluctance when she met them earlier.
Most of the Witches carried themselves with overbearing auras of power, but Yu Wu was clearly different from them. Like a child who was eager to be pampered, she ran up to each Witch, hugged them and fooled around with them for a bit before moving onto the next one. When she was finally done, she looked at Qianye Ying’er and Yun Che with a clear look of wariness and hostility.
“Are they the ones who hurt Chanyi and fourth sister?” Yu Wu intentionally asked in a loud voice. Her tone was completely different from before.
“Right now, they are guests master has invited herself,” the sixth Witch, Lan Ting said. Her voice sounded as gentle as the clouds. “Everything else can come later.”
“Hmph!” Yu Wu frowned and clenched her tiny fists tightly. “I won’t forgive you even if master doesn’t punish you!”
Yun Che swept his gaze across the six Witches. Yu Wu’s words failed to incite any reaction from him at all because he didn’t see them as the six Witches of the Soul Stealing Realm. No… they were tools of the highest quality that he would use to exact his revenge!
A golden figure moved forward and caught his attention. It was the ninth Witch, Chanyi. She extended a hand to Yun Che and said, “Give it to me.”
Her words had completely lost their former warmth and gentleness. The only thing left was ice and nothing else.
When she woke up at the Central Ruins Realm and discovered that she was completely naked, when Qianye Ying’er’s arrogant voice entered her ears and ravaged her insides… she couldn’t even begin to describe the sense of humiliation she had felt at the time. It might even become the memory of a lifetime.
She had submitted to the threat and didn’t track down Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er. She was deathly afraid that they would reveal the Profound Imagery Stone to the world if she tried anything at all… Despite being a Witch—especially because she was a Witch—her fear of losing her honor was a thousand times greater than the average woman. It was because her honor didn’t belong only to herself. When one Witch was shamed, all the Witches were shamed. And when all the Witches were shamed, the entire Soul Stealing Realm was shamed as well.
Qianye Ying’er was called the “Goddess”, but her ruthlessness and lack of conscience didn’t fit her title at all.
It took her a long time to confess her mistake to Chi Wuyao and the rest of the Witches. It was because she knew how humiliated her sisters would feel.
Today, Qianye Ying’er and Yun Che were alone in the Soul Sky, while they were six Witches strong. She would make them surrender the Profound Imagery Stone and eliminate this knife behind her back once and for all.
“Oh? What do you want from us, little Chanyi?” Qianye Ying’er stared at Nanhuang Chanyi’s hands as if she was admiring the latter’s delicate fingers.
“Hmph, let’s cut the pretenses already, shall we?” the third Witch, Ye Li said coldly. “Give us the Profound Imagery Stone you used on Chanyi now!”
“Yeah! Give it to us now!” The eighth Witch, Yu Wu leaped next to Nanhuang Chanyi and glared at Qianye Ying’er. “If master hadn’t told us not to hurt you, we would’ve… hmph!”
“Correction,” the fourth Witch Yao Die interrupted, “Master told us not to hurt Yun Che, and only him. Everyone else is fair game.”
“That’s right.” Chanyi nodded and stared at Yun Che for a moment. Then, she forced herself to turn away and look at Qianye Ying’er. “Brahma Monarch Goddess, you have violated my bottomline a long time ago, but I will not disobey my master. If you surrender the Profound Imagery Stone now, I promise I will forget this indignity temporarily. Otherwise…”
“Bottomline?” Qianye Ying’er snorted. “Did you forget that you are the one who forced our hands first? You tore apart our secret, I tore apart your clothes. I think it was a perfectly fair trade.”
“As for the recording, it was just insurance so that you wouldn’t stab us in the back.” Qianye Ying’er’s smile turned colder. “You are a Witch, right? Don’t tell me you don’t understand the basic rules of survival?”
“Ridiculous.” Nanhuang Chanyi withdrew her hand. It was clear from her shaking fingertips that she was barely holding back her anger. “I take it that you have no plans of surrendering the stone?”
“Of course. This is the one and only Profound Imagery Stone in the world where a Witch’s full glory was captured. Why would I give up something so precious to someone else?” Qianye Ying’er smiled tauntingly at Chanyi.
Nanhuang Chanyi didn’t hold a shred of malice toward Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er back then. In fact, she had helped them out in some ways. The fault was completely on Qianye Ying’er and Yun Che, and Qianye Ying’er’s so-called “insurance” was especially despicable.
Since their “guests” had set foot in the Soul Stealing Realm, the Witches thought that they could resolve this without a hitch. They didn’t imagine that Qianye Ying’er would be this unreasonable, however.
“It looks like further conversation is unnecessary.” The third Witch started walking toward Qianye Ying’er. She left behind a dark, transient mark on the floor every time she took a step. “Brahma Monarch Goddess, you must think that the Witches are easy to bully!”
She slowly extended her hand. “You have five breaths. Surrender the Profound Imagery Stone while you can, or… we will take it ourselves. Don’t blame us if you lose more than just the Profound Imagery Stone!”
High above the sky and standing atop a black cloud, Chi Wuyao watched the scene with a curious smile on her face.
“Is this the true nature of the Brahma Monarch Goddess?” The indifferent voice of a woman rang behind Chi Wuyao.
“Not even close.” Chi Wuyao smiled tenderly. “She is a woman who will do anything to achieve her goals. Back in the Eastern Divine Region, to call her methods ‘despicable’ would be massively understating things.”
“But she isn’t being her usual scheming self. She is simply trying to build some momentum for her master.”
“She wants Yun Che to order her to give them the Profound Imagery Stone. This way, he can establish some semblance of authority over my beloved Witches… However, she’s clearly unfamiliar with the concept of altruism, which is why she isn’t as successful as she might have hoped.”
“The fact that she would even try though, is interesting beyond words.”
Chi Wuyao pressed a finger to her lips, but had no intentions of showing herself at all. A soul stealing gleam shone behind her gray, dark pupils. “How will you make my cute little children, submit? Show me, my good Che’er... If you fail, I’ll be very disappointed.”
“...???” The eyes behind Chi Wuyao froze for several breaths.