Qianye Ying’er was clearly steering Yun Che and He Ling toward a possibility neither of them had ever thought of, the possibility that the Brahma Monarch God Realm wasn’t behind the mass murder of the wood spirits and the suffering of He Ling and He Lin… At this point, it was almost a certainty.
After all, the current Qianye Ying’er had no reason to cover for the Brahma Monarch God Realm at all.
Yun Che could clearly sense the turmoil in He Ling’s heart through their soul connection.
“Moreover,” Qianye Ying’er continued, “Royal Wood Spirits are extremely rare, so rare that they are rumored to be extinct in a lot of places. Naturally, their Wood Spirit Orbs are just as precious. A king realm may not be too interested in common Wood Spirit Orbs, but there is no way they would let a Royal Wood Spirit Orb slip through their grasp.”
“However, the culprit gave the Wood Spirit Patriarch, a Royal Wood Spirit the chance to detonate his Wood Spirit Orb, meaning that the culprit most likely failed to recognize the fact that he was a Royal Wood Spirit. Through this, we can deduce that the culprit is a fairly young and inexperienced profound practitioner.”
“They weren’t there for the Royal Wood Spirit Orbs. They just wanted to gather some common Wood Spirit Orbs, that’s all.”
“...” Yun Che frowned and stayed quiet for a moment.
Golden profound light was pretty rare, but not so rare that it was an identifiable trait. For example, his golden crow flames grew more and more golden as his cultivation and his Golden Crow’s Record of the Burning World improved. Qianye Ying’er also exuded golden light sometimes when she was using the Divine Oracle, even though she had lost all of her Brahma God divine power.
To his knowledge, the only profound practitioners who exuded natural golden profound aura were the profound practitioners of Brahma Monarch Realm and Southern Sea Realm. And in the Eastern Divine Region, the Brahma Monarch Realm was the only one that fit the criteria.
There was almost no one who hadn’t heard of the Brahma Monarch God Realm since they were the strongest king realm of the Eastern Divine Region. Therefore, if someone ran into a profound practitioner with golden profound aura in the Eastern Divine Region, it was perfectly natural to assume that they hailed from the Brahma Monarch God Realm… even if they had never known a denizen of the Brahma Monarch God Realm in their whole lives.
Yun Che didn’t know that the color of Brahma Monarch profound practitioner’s aura was almost the same as a normal profound practitioner’s until they reached Divine Sovereign Realm or above.
From the looks of it, whoever had attacked the Wood Spirit Clan was most certainly not a Divine Sovereign or a Divine Master, much less a Divine Sovereign or Divine Master of the Brahma Monarch Realm.
If the Wood Spirit Patriarch really had identified his killer through the color of their profound aura… then that meant that his final words were wrong from the beginning.
Noticing a strange look in Qianye Ying’er’s eyes, Yun Che asked, “You found out something else, didn’t you?”
Qianye Ying’er said, “You said that this happened fifteen years ago. It reminded me of a small matter that I had completely forgotten until now.”
Yun Che: “?”
Qianye Ying’er said slowly as she paced back at a relaxed pace, “Did you know that Nan Wansheng visited the Brahma Monarch God Realm fifteen years ago? Hmph, that old bastard could always find an excuse to visit us like an annoying fly, and I always avoided him unless I had a use for him.”
“That visit was slightly different from usual. He normally visited alone, but that one time he brought three people with him: the Southern Sea Elders—both Divine Masters—and his son, Nan Qianqiu. The two elders were the son’s escorts.”
“...” This was the first time Yun Che had heard this name.
“Nan Qianqiu was Nan Wansheng’s youngest son. Although he was the child of a concubine, his talent stood out among the trash Nan Wansheng’s women had given birth to. He had reached the Divine King Realm at the age of eighty, and he was accepted by the Southern Sea divine power, a power that no one has been able to inherit for two thousand years.”
Qianye Ying’er paused here and looked at Yun Che.
The temperature in Yun Che’s eyes was dropping steadily as she expected.
The son of Nan Wansheng…
Fifteen years ago…
Divine King Realm…
The timing, the profound aura, the cultivation level, the age, and the experience, or rather the lack of… everything was a perfect match with Qianye Ying’er’s earlier deduction!
Qianye Ying’er withdrew her gaze and continued, “At the time, I thought that Nan Wansheng had come to flaunt his son to Qianye Fantian. After all, Qianye Fantian often took jabs at Nan Wansheng and ridiculed him for not having a worthy successor. It was also a good chance to expose Nan Qianqiu to the king realms of the Eastern Divine Region. Regardless, I was absolutely uninterested in knowing his true motive at the time.”
It made sense. Nan Qianqiu didn’t even deserve to be remembered by the old Qianye Ying’er, so she wouldn’t have asked about him.
“I’ve asked the Brahma Kings about this for the past couple days, and I was pleasantly surprised by the very first answer I got. Apparently, the first thing Nan Wansheng asked after he met Qianye Fantian was about the wood spirits.”
“!!” Yun Che’s eyebrows sank immediately. “Give me all the details.”
Qianye Ying’er wrapped her arms around her breasts and gazed into the distance. “Nan Qianqiu’s cultivation was mostly built through external power and spirit herbs. As a result, his foundation was extremely unstable, and his profound aura was impure after he entered Divine King Realm. If Nan Wansheng wanted his son to inherit the Southern Sea divine power in the best possible state and in the shortest amount of time possible, then the first thing he must do was to purify his son’s profound energy.”
She looked at him again and said slowly, “And to do that, he needed a lot of Wood Spirit Orbs.”
Yun Che slowly clenched his fists as his frown grew darker.
The tragedy of the Royal Wood Spirit Clan was just a minor matter in the God Realm. Even most of what Yun Che knew came from the bits and pieces he gathered from the wood spirit clansmen.
Therefore, no one thought that the strongest king realm in the Southern Divine Region would be involved in a matter this “minor”, especially since it had happened in the Eastern Divine Region.
Was it a coincidence?
The profound aura, timing, profile, cultivation and goal were all a perfect fit… how could such a perfect coincidence possibly exist?
“Surely the Southern Sea Realm had a million ways to obtain the Wood Spirit Orbs they needed? Why would Nan Wansheng make the trip to the Eastern Divine Region himself?” Yun Che asked in a chilly tone.
“Heh. The answer’s simple,” Qianye Ying’er sneered. “The wood spirits are extinct in the Southern Divine Region as a matter of course. They are most spotted in the Western Divine Region, but as you can imagine yourself, even Nan Wansheng didn’t have the gall to commit something this heinous right under the Western Divine Region’s nose.”
“The most efficient way to purify one’s profound aura is to use Wood Spirit Orbs that still had some life in them; Wood Spirit Orbs that had just been extracted from a fresh corpse. Naturally, it made sense for Nan Qianqiu to travel to the Eastern Divine Region. That still wasn’t the main reason he had to be there in person, however. After discovering that Nan Qianqiu had the potential to inherit the Southern Sea divine power, Nan Wansheng must’ve planned to make him his crown prince, and as the crown prince Nan Qianqiu was expected to better himself with his own two hands and meet expectations that are a thousand times stricter than normal.”
She was Qianye Fantian’s successor a long time ago, so she knew this better than anyone. A normal royal descendant might have the privilege to enjoy a life of luxury to their heart’s content, but the successor to the throne… must be tempered countless times until their willpower, power, and cunning were befitting of their status.
To the future crown prince of the Southern Sea Realm, this “trip” was probably one of, if not the most insignificant experience he had to go through to become a qualified ruler. It was highly doubtful that he even remembered this tragedy.
“As for why Nan Wansheng was there in person, he just wanted to see me, that’s all,” Qianye Ying’er said disdainfully.
Yun Che pondered for a moment before asking, “Is it possible that the Brahma Monarch God Realm were the ones who told the Southern Sea Realm where to find the wood spirits?”
“Of course not,” Qianye Ying’er replied disdainfully. “Wood Spirit Orbs are precious, but not to a god emperor like Qianye Fantian, not to mention that it is a taboo to hunt wood spirits. Do you really think that someone as cunning as him would allow Nan Wansheng to grab ahold of his weakness, however insignificant it might be?”
“One more thing. You have only told me when the Wood Spirit Patriarch was killed, but not where. I discovered the location myself while I was investigating Nan Qianqiu, but I need your confirmation to know if it is the right place.”
“...” Yun Che hadn’t told her where the Wood Spirit Patriarch was killed, but it was because he didn’t actually know the location, not because he had forgotten about it. From his last conversation with Qing Mu, he only knew that it was a “star realm very close to a certain king realm”.
Since both he and He Ling thought that the culprit was definitely a denizen of the Brahma Monarch God Realm, he had seen no point in dragging He Ling’s most painful memories to the surface just to inquire about the details he didn’t need.
Qianye Ying’er gazed toward the west and said, “Anyway, the tragedy took place in the Gaze Eternity Realm, an average-sized middle star realm that is... surprisingly close to this realm.”
“He Ling,” Yun Che asked He Ling in his mind. “Is that the place?”
If it was, then there couldn’t be any more doubt.
“...” He Ling didn’t say anything for a long time. All he could sense from her was the pain and misery of a trembling soul.
That was all the answer he needed.
From doubt to irrefutable certainty. When Qianye Ying’er saw the look on Yun Che’s face, she knew she was right and let out a low chuckle. “The Brahma Monarch Realm had been duking it out with the Southern Sea Realm in secret since time immemorial, but I bet they never imagined that the biggest loss they ever suffered was caused by a nobody like Nan Qianqiu!”
Although the wood spirits’ origin was that of a Creation God, they were undoubtedly one of the weakest races in the world. Even their patriarch was just a Divine Spirit.
Weak but incredibly valuable, they had suffered tremendously in a world where the law of the jungle stood above all. If the global ban didn’t exist, the wood spirits would’ve gone extinct already.
No one knew when the patriarch of the Wood Spirit Race had died. No one would truly care either. Just the same, they would never imagine the genocide of this weak, tiny clan would directly alter the fates of two of the strongest king realms in the world forever.
Poor Qianye Fantian, he never learned that the Southern Sea God Realm had unwittingly painted a small, but absolutely fatal target on his realm’s back until the very end.
“Southern Sea… Nan Qianqiu…” Yun Che muttered as a terrible, dark gleam gathered in his eyes. However, he froze when he noticed that the turmoil in He Ling’s soul was steadily declining instead of improving. He had to slip back into the Sky Poison Pearl before he could even acknowledge Qianye Ying’er.
Inside the Sky Poison Pearl, He Ling was hugging her knees and burying her head in them. When she sensed Yun Che, she rose to her feet hurriedly to greet him, “Master…”
Her eyes were heartbreakingly confused and sorrowful.
Yun Che walked up to her and hugged her gently without a word.
Her face pressed against Yun Che’s chest, He Ling closed her eyes and started shaking more and more. A quiet sob spilled out of her lips. “I killed the wrong people… I… I killed so many innocent people… I…”
“No you didn’t.” Yun Che caressed her smooth back and whispered, “The Brahma Monarch God Realm was the biggest obstacle in our way. Without you, we wouldn’t have been able to conquer the Eastern Divine Region this quickly. And just the same, we wouldn’t have been able to conquer the Brahma Monarch God Realm this quickly or learn the truth.”
“Today, both you and I have made huge progress in reaching our goals, and it was a result you and only you could’ve achieved… the best result anyone could ask for.” Yun Che smiled warmly beside her ear. “So you don’t need to feel sad at all. On the contrary, you should be happy and proud of yourself.”
His words were simple, but they melted the ice in He Ling’s soul until warmth filled up everything. Her shoulders stopped shaking, and her arms were secretly tightening around Yun Che’s back. She was still sobbing though. “Mn… I’ll… believe what you say… Master…”
It was at this moment a Burning Moon Divine Envoy called out to him.
“Your Magnificence, a messenger from the Southern Sea Realm is requesting to meet you.”
The name “Southern Sea” immediately put a frown on Yun Che’s face.
He shot He Ling a comforting look before leaving the Sky Poison Pearl. He replied immediately, “Let him in.”
“What perfect timing.” Qianye Ying’er gazed toward the south. “Nan Wansheng must’ve lost his patience after seeing what happened to the Brahma Monarch and Moon God realms.”
Yun Che didn’t give her a reply. His expression was cold and dark.
Although all the pieces seemed to fit perfectly, a deduction was ultimately still a deduction… and who better to obtain the truth from than the mouth of the Southern Sea God Emperor himself?
Very soon, an impressive man dressed in golden clothes was led before Yun Che. The man bowed respectfully before saying, “Greetings, Devil Master. Congratulations on conquering the Eastern Divine Region and rewriting the history of the God Realm in just half a month’s time.”
Yun Che stared at him before asking, “Is that a quote directly from your master himself?”
“That’s correct,” the messenger answered evenly. Then, the man extended an invitation letter that glowed with an unusual golden light to him and said, “On behalf of my king, the Southern Sea God Emperor, I am here today to invite you to the Southern Sea Crown Prince’s crowning ceremony. My king said that you’d be bestowing a great honor upon the ceremony if you would be so kind as to attend in person.”
“...” Yun Che raised his eyebrows and flipped over his palm. The next instant, the invitation letter had appeared in his palm.
Time: seven days from now.
And the crown prince was…
Yun Che and Qianye Ying’er exchanged a silent glance with each other. An icy, eerie smile flashed across Yun Che’s lips as he put away the invitation letter and said, “Tell your master that I will be on time.”
The messenger looked obviously surprised.
Although he was in the Southern Divine Region until today, the tragedy of the Eastern Divine Region had practically spread to the entire world.
In just half a month, the divine region had been bled like a pig, and the fate of the king realms was only worse than the other. The mere rumor of Yun Che’s cruelty and tyranny was enough to send shivers down anyone’s spine.
That was why he had expected to be murdered violently from the moment he set foot in this hall. He didn’t expect to receive such an amiable reply at all.
Half a breath later, he finally recovered himself and bowed. “I shall leave and carry your answer to my king immediately, I am sure my king will be thrilled to hear your reply.”
As of this chapter we are currently caught up to the author.