The heavens are unworthy.
The four words were engraved into the memories of everyone who witnessed the first ever devil master in the history of the Northern Divine Region.
Right now, the only emotion Yun Che’s disrespect and arrogance toward the heavenly way induced in these people was worry.
But one day, they would understand the true meaning behind their devil master’s words.
The coronation proceeded without the heaven offering ritual. When Yan Tianxiao finished a long speech, First Witch Jie Xin and Jie Ling flew up to Yun Che to drape a cloak with the Heaven Smiting Devil Emperor’s symbol on it across his shoulders, and slip a jade belt with black crystals around his waist.
Three devil orbs of varying intensity were sewn into the jade belt. They contained the origin devil aura of Soul Stealing, Yama Devil, and Burning Moon. It represented Yun Che’s absolute control over the three king realms of the Northern Divine Region.
On the Soul Sky Warship, Chi Wuyao raised her palms and lifted a crown engraved with ancient devilish patterns with her power. It was shaped in the same fashion as the Heaven Smiting Devil Emperor’s crown in the ancient records, and its devilish might had changed the sky itself when the crown was fully formed.
Chi Wuyao was supposed to put the crown on Yun Che’s head, but she suddenly turned toward Qianye Ying’er and said, “Yun Qianying, why don’t you be the one to crown him?”
“Me?” Qianye Ying’er shot her a sideways look. “Is that a joke?”
Chi Wuyao smiled at her. “He has already skipped one rule. What does it matter if he skips another one?”
“You are the one who stayed by his side every step of the way until today. You are his companion, his guide, his motivator, and his witness. If we were to do away with the social norms, then there is no one who is more suitable than you to crown him.”
A complicated look overcame Qianye Ying’er’s features, but Chi Wuyao gave her no time to hesitate. She put the crown in her hands and said, “This is an important moment in his life; a turning point in his fate. Are you sure you want to leave it in another woman’s hands?”
Qianye Ying’er shot Chi Wuyao a long look before finally accepting it. Then, she flew into the air and landed next Yun Che before everyone’s eyes.
She hadn’t shown her face, but her figure was still as beautiful as a fantasy.
The crowns of all the god emperors in the Northern Divine Region had nine tassels and nine jewels on them, but Yun Che’s crown had twelve tassels and jewels in total. It was unprecedented in the history of the Northern Divine Region.
It was one of the many designs in this coronation ceremony Chi Wuyao had attended to personally.
In fact, she had involved herself in every preparation that was related to Yun Che in any way.
Some time long ago, Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er had fallen into the abyss of darkness and transformed into monsters of vengeance. Today, they had finally taken their first step toward the vengeance of their dreams.
Qianye Ying’er raised her arms and stared at the man who was the center of attention of billions of people. Feeling his even but warm breath, she gently—very gently—put the crown that represented a turning point in his and the Northern Divine Region’s fate on his head.
The crown was applied, and the devil master came to be. Yan Tianxiao dropped to his knees and declared loudly, “Your Magnificence!”
Everyone from the three king realms be it on the profound ships or the Sacred Region dropped to their knees and bowed their heads deeply.
Nearly all of the king realms’ core forces were here. They represented the absolute core of the Northern Divine Region, and their loud, soul shattering declaration of deference caused all the realm kings and the rulers inside and outside the Sacred Region to drop to their knees as well.
After all, how could they stand when even the three king realms were on their knees?
Yan Tianxiao still didn’t stand when the declaration of deference was over. He continued, “The Devil Master is the incarnation of the Devil Emperor. The Northern Divine Region’s fate is sure to change for the better with his presence.”
“I, Yan Tianxiao, the Yama Devil God Emperor, and the Yama Devil Realm, are willing to bear the Devil Emperor’s blessing, obey my ancestors’ will, and serve the Devil Master for eternity. The Devil Master’s order is the one absolute order. The Devil Master’s will is the will of a lifetime. If we ever defy our oath, may the heavens smite us where we stand!”
Back then, Yan Tianxiao had submitted to Yun Che only because he was forced to. His declaration had been so reluctant that he nearly crushed his own teeth to pieces. But now, his declaration was loud and wholehearted. Everyone from the highest realm king to the lowest mortal could hear the determination behind his oath.
He was once the strongest god emperor of the Northern Divine Region. He, out of all people, should hate being the subordinate of another being the most. But not only did he swear his loyalty to Yun Che before all the living beings of the Northern Divine Region, the oath he swore was about as determined as it could get.
Naturally, everyone including the denizens of the Yama Devil Realm was stunned by their god emperor’s unbelievable declaration.
It wasn’t like Yan Tianxiao had dropped to his knees before Yun Che immediately. The change had happened slowly and gradually after Yun Che had annihilated his common sense again and again. Of course, since most of these people hadn’t gone through what he went through, they couldn’t even begin to understand his decision or drastic change in behavior.
Not that their understanding mattered to him in the slightest. He was the Yama Emperor, and he didn’t need another person’s “understanding” to make his decisions!
That still wasn’t the biggest reason behind his change, however. The reason he changed so completely was because the arrival of Yun Che reignited the hope he thought he had buried in the dark a long time ago… the hope, to alter his fate.
When Yun Che first came to the Northern Divine Region, he learned from Qianye Ying’er that besides the ambitious Devil Queen of the Soul Stealing Realm, the other two king realms were perfectly content to enjoy their statuses as king realms and hole up in their prison of darkness forever.
It wasn’t like they had never thought to escape their prison. They simply lacked the power to change their fates. Forget the three Divine Regions combined, any one of the three Divine Regions could’ve destroyed them like they were nothing.
It was why even Chi Wuyao, the bearer of a Devil Emperor’s soul, had never truly set her plans in action despite having observed the entire Eastern Divine Region through Mu Xuanyin’s eyes for ten thousand years.
But Yun Che’s arrival gave them hope… and it wasn’t even a small hope that might be snuffed out at any moment.
No one wanted to be locked up in a prison of darkness forever. No one wanted their descendants to be locked up in an ever-shrinking prison that was doomed to disappear eventually either.
After being oppressed for countless years, after he saw real hope to overturn the dark fate that had been choking his people for generations… Yan Tianxiao was willing to give up his whole life to fuel it.
Fen Daoqi, the first person in Burning Moon Realm to “submit” to Yun Che, was the same.
On the Burning Moon Warship, the group of Moon Eaters and Burning Moon Divine Envoys led by Fen Daoqi also swore their oath of loyalty to Yun Che:
“The people of the Northern Divine Region as our witness, we, the Burning Moon Realm, swear by our souls to serve the Devil Master for eternity. If we ever defy our oaths, may we suffer eternal tribulations and eternal death!”
On the Soul Sky Warship, Chi Wuyao said in a chilly voice, “Starting today, the Soul Stealing Realm swears to serve the Devil Master loyally. The Devil Master’s will is the Mandate of Heaven, and the Devil Master’s enemy… is our sworn enemy!”
Her oath was a lot softer than the previous two god emperors, but her last four words still made some people feel like they had dropped suddenly into a frigid hell.
The dark projection the three king realms worked together to create was bigger than anything that had ever existed in history.
It was far, far clearer than even the Star God Projection that happened during the Profound God Convention of the Eastern Divine Region.
Therefore, the oaths sworn by the three king realms had truly happened before all of the Northern Divine Region.
“Rise.” Yun Che stared indifferently toward the front and spoke.
At the same time, his consciousness swept across the Soul Sky Warship for a moment. All the Witches were present except the Seventh Witch, Hua Jin.
She was infiltrating the Eastern Divine Region and taking the first step to boost their momentum and prepare his revenge while his coronation was ongoing.
Yan Tianxiao finally rose to his feet and floated toward the ground. After sweeping a glance across the proud warriors of the Northern Divine Region, he said, “Today is the day of our Devil Master’s coronation and the beginning of a new era of the Northern Divine Region!”
“For the longest time, the Northern Divine Region has been trapped by a terrible fate. There was only infinite chaos, sin, and despair in these dark lands, and we weren’t able to fulfill our responsibilities as rulers of the Northern Divine Region and change the dark fate of our world.”
“But what we couldn’t do, our Devil Master can. That is why the Heaven Smiting Devil Emperor has given him to us. That is why we swore to serve the Devil Master forever!”
Yan Tianxiao stared at the people beneath his feet as the pressure emanating from his body grew so heavy that it was like a physical thing hammering against everyone’s chest and heart. He said in an incredibly low tone, “Now, I ask all of you: will you serve the Devil Master loyally alongside us and find a new hope for the land beneath your feet!?”
He sounded like he was questioning, but it was really an order that couldn’t be refuted.
The Soul Stealing Sacred Region was shockingly silent.
Logically speaking, anyone who took over the three king realms might as well have taken over the entire Northern Divine Region itself.
From the moment Yun Che took over the three king realms, the will of all other star realms no longer mattered in the slightest. These monarchs and sovereigns weren’t here because they wanted to be. They weren’t even here to witness a coronation, at least not entirely.
They were here because the three king realms “invited” them! To force them to declare their stance!
One king realm was hard enough to refuse, but three of them together? Was defiance ever a word in the dictionary?
Yan Tianxiao abruptly looked to his side where several groups of people had occupied the foremost seats after he was done speaking.
It was where the people of the three strongest star realms behind the Northern Divine Region king realms—the Imperial Heaven Realm, the Desolate Calamity Realm, and the Divine Python Realm—were gathered. The realm kings of all three realms, Tian Muyi, Huo Tianxing, and Great Viper Sage were present as well.
Words couldn’t begin to describe how shocked and complicated they felt since the start of this coronation ceremony.
The last time they saw Yun Che was at the Heavenly Sovereign Assembly in the Imperial Heaven Realm.
It had only been less than a year since that day, but Yun Che was standing above the nine heavens and the king realms already!
Every realm king followed Yan Tianxiao’s gaze to stare at the three realm kings. They were the only ones who had any real say in the Northern Divine Region besides the three king realms.
However, they were currently enduring an unprecedented amount of pressure behind their backs. The three king realms against all reason had united as one to force them into obeying their command, no matter how ridiculous or impossible it sounded… did they really have the power or even the courage to question it?
The three realm kings exchanged a glance with each other. They all saw the indescribable pools of emotion in each other’s eyes.
Suddenly, Yun Che spoke again and shattered the suffocating silence in an instant. He waved a hand, and Yan Tianxiao’s imperious pressure vanished into nothing.
Yan Tianxiao looked surprised, but he didn’t question the Devil Master’s order. He simply bowed his head and stepped back.
Yun Che walked into the full view of everyone, his pitch-black eyes staring straight toward the front. He said in a low tone, “I’m sure you’re all thinking about something like this right now: this so-called ‘Devil Master’ is a denizen of the Eastern Divine Region, and it has only been several years since he came to the Northern Divine Region. He hasn’t done anything for our people, nor has he built up any notable power to speak of. On what basis should we allow someone like him to be the supreme ruler of the Northern Divine Region?”
“Moreover, he’s only thirty years old or so, a ‘junior’ at best in the profound way. Even his cultivation level is only at level eight Divine Sovereign. Why should we make him the first ever Northern Region Devil Master and let him command us?”
“Some of you might even have thought a step further: maybe this so-called ‘Devil Master’ is just a puppet. Maybe the three king realms have put him on the pedestal so that they could gain even greater control over the Northern Divine Region.”
Yun Che’s indifferent words hit everyone’s nerves like a hammer.
They were all staring at him in astonishment because he had spoken exactly what they were thinking.
He was an Eastern Divine Region denizen, a man in his thirties, and a Divine Sovereign… indeed, how could someone like him become the Devil Master who stands above even the three king realms?
Although it was rumored that he was the successor of the Devil Emperor and a profound practitioner who could unleash the power of the true gods… rumors were ultimately just rumors.
Even if they were true, it still didn’t explain how he managed to win the hearts of the three king realms to this extent in such a short time.
It was impossible no matter how you thought about it.
Right now, the word that appeared most frequently in everyone’s heads was without a doubt, “puppet”.
However, they didn’t expect him to reveal this “fact” so bluntly.
“Heh.” Yun Che chuckled, his disdain evident for everyone to see. He looked up slightly and spread his words to every corner of the Northern Divine Region. “In that case, I will show you all why I am the Devil Master!”
Profound energy erupted from Yun Che’s body like an abyssal thunder. Heretic Soul, Burning Heart, Purgatory, Rumbling Heaven, Hell Monarch—he activated all five Heretic God Gates in one go.
His profound aura turned as red as blood. Although his cultivation level was still that of a level eight Divine Sovereign, the terrifying pressure that encompassed all of the Soul Stealing Sacred Region told a completely different story.
The burst of power that tore apart the northern region profound practitioners’ common sense like paper. Countless eyeballs nearly fell out of their sockets and hit the ground.
But the dumbfounded people had no idea that this was just the beginning.
When the Heretic God’s power reached its maximum limit, Yun Che slowly closed his eyes and spread his arms wide. His long black hair was dancing majestically behind his head even though there was no wind around him.
His eyes, his skin, even his hair glowed deeper and deeper with darkness.
It was the absolute light of the devil of the Eternal Calamity of Darkness.
The dark clouds covering the sky suddenly churned chaotically. Light was swiftly fading from the earth.
Countless pupils contracted into needles, countless nerves tensed up like a taut string, and countless hearts beat wildly like a drum.
It was because an all-encompassing, devilish power was descending from the sky.
When the power manifested itself into existence, the breath was squeezed out of the lungs of every dark profound practitioner within its vicinity. But before they could even begin to compose themselves, it started growing at a mad rate that exceeded the recognition of any god emperor, any common sense, and the endurance limit of any profound practitioner...
Rumble rumble rumble RUMBLE RUMBLE
Light faded into darkness, and the black clouds began to tremble more and more… it was to the point where they felt like the lifeless objects were actually wailing in terror.
That wasn’t all. The quake spread to the Soul Stealing Sacred Region and every space of darkness beneath the sky. It wasn’t even a release of power; it was just the natural pressure of the thing that had engulfed the whole sky.
“Wh… what… was that?!”
Tian Muyi, the strongest realm king of the Northern Divine Region after the king realms, opened his mouth so wide that the edges of his lips threatened to split apart.
He thought he knew Yun Che better than most after witnessing the impossible change that overcame Tian Guhu, but the devilish might that dropped from the sky out of nowhere still shocked him so much that he could have a heart attack.
All around him, the experts of the Imperial Heaven Realm and the nearby Huo Tianxing and Great Viper Sage were also trembling before the greatest fright of their lives.
The impossible might that threatened to crush their bodies and souls like lightning smashed everything they knew about darkness like a hammer. They felt like their lives were in the devilish hands of a True Devil of the past. The fear that took hold of their bodies and shook them like a leaf completely transcended all logic and belief.
A devastating thunder cut through the sky when two clouds knocked into one another.
However, the heavenly thunder sounded fearful… or even pitiful before this devilish might.
By now, the churning dark clouds were just meters away from Yun Che’s hair. He could probably touch them with his bare hands if they descended any further.
Crimson patterns started manifesting on his body and face. It wasn’t the devilish mark he had gained ever since he had successfully cultivated the middle stage of Eternal Calamity of Darkness, nor the devilish patterns of his robes and crown.
This was also the first time he had unleashed the art in full force.
The Heaven Smiting Devil Emperor was the first ever devil created by the Ancestor God. Her Eternal Calamity of Darkness was the progenitor, the pinnacle, and even the origin of all darkness in the world.
All devils are but ants before the Eternal Calamity of Darkness.
RUMBLE RUMBLE RUMBLE RUMBLE...
At this point, it was impossible to tell if the heavenly way was roaring in anger or wailing in fear.
Just like everyone else, Yan Tianxiao’s pupils were shrinking into needles, and his lips were trembling uncontrollably. He slowly bent his waist until his knees hit the ground… this time, he kneeled not because he was swearing his loyalty or obeying a custom, but because he felt reverence from the bottom of his soul.
He had witnessed the terror that was Yun Che many times before today, but it was only now he realized that those demonstrations were nowhere close to the absolute limit of the Devil Master.
Yan Tianxiao kneeled. The Yama Devils kneeled. The Moon Eaters kneeled. The Witches kneeled...
One by one, faster than their minds could react, the realm kings and the dark profound practitioners kneeled beneath the feet of Devil Master Yun Che and trembled in fear.
As the world grew darker and darker, they realized that they weren’t just witnessing the birth of a Devil Master. It was the descent of an ancient devil god that would destroy the world.