“I-I…” Emperor Melobo really did begin to cry. Begging was useless. What was he to do?
Ji Ning continued, “The reason why I’m going to kill you… is because of Daolord Allgod.”
“Daolord Allgod?” Emperor Melobo’s already-pale face turned completely ashen. Of course he remembered that madman! Daolord Allgod had been willing to pay any price in his efforts to kill Melobo, and he had nearly succeeded. Emperor Melobo had only been able to escape by the skin of his teeth.
“He died! He died long ago! There’s no way you could’ve ever met him.” Emperor Melobo was panicking.
“True. I never met him. When I was an Elder God, however, I received a bit of kindness from him. His formation-spirit bestowed me with a secret art,” Ning said, “And then expressed the hope that if I ever grew strong enough, I would help Daolord Allgod exact revenge upon you and kill you. Although this was nothing more than the dying will of a man who had already lost himself to despair… since I have benefited from him, I’m naturally going to help him carry out his wishes.”
“The reason I’m telling you this is so that you’ll understand that you… are now dying because of Daolord Allgod,” Ning said.
“I-I…” Emperor Melobo now understood everything, and his mind was in a state of chaos. Daolord Allgod had once been an extraordinarily talented figure, and he and his Dao-companion had been like a pair of truly divine lovers. Alas, Emperor Melobo’s devouring of his Dao-companion had driven him completely mad. Daolord Allgod had been filled with resentment and hatred until the day he died, and even when he died his eyes remained open and filled with rage.
Neither Emperor Melobo nor Allgod ever would’ve imagined that the Allgod Estate he casually set up before dying would result in an Elder God, Ji Ning, owing him a debt… and then coming to repay it. Today, Emperor Melobo would die!
Slash. Ning waved his hand, causing a streak of sword-light to appear in the air. The sword-light was ephemeral and indistinct, hard to see with the naked eye. It instantly slashed across Emperor Melobo’s body, and as it did so it spread out alongside the Aeonian’s karma lines. Everything which had any of his soul or truesoul within it was completely severed!
Emperor Melobo’s gaze grew dim. His soul was shattered, and he perished on the spot. Now that Ning had reached such incredible heights in the Dao of Karma, he had learned some new and truly terrifying ways of killing people.
“Fine sword-arts,” Hegemon Brightshore said in praise.
“A pity.” Ning glanced at Emperor Melobo’s corpse, then murmured softly, “Daolord Allgod was a true genius, but he spent most of his life a madman because of this Aeonian. Not even death was an escape for him.”
“If Daolord Allgod knew what you did for him, he would feel relieved,” Hegemon Brightshore said.
“But he has died and his Dao has vanished. There’s no way for him to know.” Ning sighed, then turned to leave.
Daolord Yu continued to stare at Ning, her eyes shining. Ning gently waved a finger at her, causing a stream of Immortal energy to fly into her body. It easily undid the seals that were inside of her. Given Ning’s current level of mastery of the Dao of Formations, unlocking seals like these was incredibly simple.
“Let’s go,” Ning said. Hegemon Brightshore and Hegemon Azurefiend both glanced at Daolord Yu, and then they followed Ning in stepping into the void and vanishing.
Daolord Yu stared as Ning vanished before her very eyes. “Daolord Darknorth… Daolord Darknorth…” she murmured repeatedly. He had appeared in her hour of need, when she had been gripped by complete despair. Then, with unbelievable power, he had killed Emperor Melobo as easily as squishing an ant. All of this had intoxicated her. Even Hegemon Brightshore and Hegemon Azurefiend, two mighty Hegemons, had clearly accepted Ning as their leader in this affair.
His power, his voice, his sword-light… all of these things stirred her heart. However, she also knew that this was nothing more than a bit of infatuation. “It feels like a dream.” Daolord Yu smiled. A dream was enough for her.
She suddenly turned and saw the various treasures which Emperor Melobo had left behind. A long-lived Emperor like Melobo had many treasures, but Daolord Darknorth and the others had left without touching them. Clearly, they had left the treasures for her.
“For me?” Daolord Yu rose to her feet. “Daolord Darknorth left them behind for me?” She felt a surge of joy in her heart.
In truth, Ning had already swept through the Jadefire Realm’s prisons and possessed an incredible amount of treasures. Emperor Melobo wasn’t even at the Archon level; how could Ning feel any interest towards his treasures? Ning didn’t even want to bother going through them, and the same was doubly true for Azurefiend and Brightshore.
Within the Aeonian Kingdom. An avatar was lying within an ancient palace. This was Emperor Melobo’s avatar. Moments ago, he had been begging for help. Now, his aura had vanished.
Emperor Anchen, Emperor Islehide, and Emperor Duug all stared at his avatar’s corpse. “It was Daolord Darknorth who did the deed,” Emperor Islehide said softly.
“What can we do?” Emperor Duug said helplessly.
“Nothing but just stare.” Emperor Anchen laughed bitterly. “We should feel thankful that Daolord Darknorth has chosen not to cause trouble for us Aeonians. There’s no way we would ever dare to go find him! All we can do is hide here in the Aeonian Kingdom and keep ourselves alive.”
All three of them felt quite resigned. Emperor Melobo had begged them for help, but who were they supposed to beg? It was Daolord Darknorth who had killed Melobo! Who in the entire Sixteen Realmverses Alliance would dare stand in his path? Realmslord Windgrace, perhaps… but if he knew of this matter, he’d probably come help Darknorth out!
All of the Hegemons and Emperors were quite intelligent. By now, they could all guess that Realmslord Windgrace and the Lonely King, two truly terrifying figures, were both waiting for the day Daolord Darknorth failed his Daomerge! Neither of them wished to make an enemy out of Darknorth at a time like this. If they pressed him too hard, it would be of no benefit to them but could possibly bring disaster upon themselves. Nobody could stop a rampaging Flamewing, after all!
“I told them all long ago, given that we aren’t on good terms with Daolord Darknorth, we Aeonians need to stay low-key during this era, the era of Daolord Darknorth. Don’t cause trouble!” Emperor Anchen muttered, “Melobo actually dared to secretly infiltrate the Dao Alliance. He has no one to blame for his death but himself. Send word once more to all the elders that they need to be good boys! Daolord Darknorth isn’t as reasonable as the other major powers, and there’s no one who can stop him if he attacks.”
“Agreed.” All of them understood that so long as Daolord Darknorth was alive, this era would belong to him. He was the most dazzling figure in all the Sixteen Realmverses Alliance, and even Realmslord Windgrace would stand on his side.
“Darknorth, if my visions serves, that female Daolord seems to be a bit smitten with you.” After leaving the Orchidfall Everworld, Hegemon Brightshore began to tease Ning a bit.
“Haha…” Ning laughed. “Nothing more than a bit of infatuation. It doesn’t count for much.” By now, the only person in all the Sixteen Realmverses Alliance who was on par with Ning in the Dao of Karma was Emperor Waveshift himself. Ning had naturally been able to discern Daolord Yu’s interest in him through his mastery of karma. But it was nothing more than a bit of interest; it wouldn’t have any true impact on her at all.
“Hegemon Brightshore, next I plan to scour the entire Flamedragon Realmverse to accept disciples on behalf of my master,” Ning said.
“Accept disciples on behalf of your master?” Hegemon Brightshore was puzzled.
“Yes, on behalf of my master, Emperor Mirrorsnow,” Ning said. “I need to accept ten! Although I’m technically accepting on his behalf, given that he is adventuring in the outside world I’ll naturally have to teach them myself.” He would be their senior apprentice-brother in name, but their teacher in truth.
“I might be taking on disciples on his behalf, but I still cannot be casual about this,” Ning said. “I’m planning to divide the Flamedragon Realmverse into nine ‘regions’, and will pick out ten World-level cultivators from each region. I’ll then select ten disciples from those ninety World-level cultivators. If I meet a few I’m truly interested in, I might even accept them as my own personal disciple.”
Only after this concluded would he go out adventuring. He would be fully prepared for the Daomerge by then, and so he would also have to select a few more heirs in the event of his failure.
The Three Realms was simply too small of a place. Although he was leaving his Omega Sword Dao behind in the Three Realms, he had yet to find anyone he felt truly worthy of passing his technique down to.
“You accepting a disciple would be a momentous occasion.” Hegemon Brightshore grew a bit excited. “Haha, a Daolord who has the power of a Hegemon… this is truly unprecedented. Your Dao has to be far stronger than ours! Perhaps I’ll send a few geniuses from the Brightshore Kingdom to take part as well.”
“That’s fine.” Ning nodded. “Everyone in the Flamedragon Realmverse is invited, save for the Aeonians.”
Ning didn’t feel any enmity towards the Dark Kingdom. In truth, it consisted of cultivators who had escaped a destroyed realmverse. There was no need to truly treat them as enemies. As Ning had grown more powerful, his view of the universe had changed as well. The only ones he continued to harbor enmity towards were the Aeonians.
Aeonians treated cultivators as food. Ning felt a tremendous amount of distaste towards them. However, since he knew that Autarch Bolin had been the one to create the Aeonians, Ning elected to simply ignore them. There was no way he would go accept one of them as his disciple.
Ning also told Hegemon Windrain, Hegemon Netherlily, and the Dao Alliance about his plans to accept disciples on behalf of his master! He informed them that he would be accepting ten disciples and could possibly even choose a few personal disciples. However, all candidates had to be skilled in the sword and be at the World level of cultivation!
The entire Flamedragon Realmverse was thrown into a state of chaos by this news. It must be understood that Ning would never casually transmit his Omega Sword Dao to others; to date, the only one he had shown it to was Daoist Bluestone. Everyone knew how incredibly powerful Ning was, and every organization hoped that one of their geniuses of the Dao of the Sword would have the chance to inherit Daolord Darknorth’s supreme technique.
And so, word of how the Flamedragon Realmverse was being divided into nine ‘regions’ quickly began to spread. Even many of the independent cultivators heard of this, and they all began to hasten towards the region closest to them.
The countless World-level cultivators all wished to become apprenticed to the most peerless Daolord to have ever existed, Daolord Darknorth.