The fan in Song Zining’s hand shattered and fell down in fragments. Several dots of light flew out from within, forming a palm-sized outline of leaf ribs, which then erupted in blinding light.
The Demoness hadn’t imagined that the man she had firmly suppressed with her domain could actually channel origin power. It was even more surprising that he would choose to detonate just as reinforcements had arrived. This detonation was so incisive that it looked like she would no longer be able to keep it under control.
Qianye’s expression shifted drastically. “Zining!” Surging waves of blood energy appeared in the air, shaking the network of black origin power in its wake.
The Demoness hesitated for but a moment before opening up her demonic energy and allowing Qianye’s domain to arrive. The two domains added together finally managed to suppress the almost-erupting daybreak origin power.
That radiant leaf dimmed down and faded into the back of Song Zining’s bloody palm. The seventh young master’s smile remained the same. It was as though he had donned a mask over his emotions, and only his eyes revealed his incomparable resolution.
Qianye said without hesitation, “Speak your terms.”
The sea of blood, the network of darkness, and the occasionally appearing luminous leaf reached a subtle balance.
The Demoness said after a period of silence, “We’ll split the Constellation Well.” These words reached everyone else’s ears. The sharing of usage rights also implied a ceasefire.
This moment, everyone noticed that the Demoness’ tone was somewhat different from before. The rule of the Evernight world was that the strong would make the rules, and the Demoness had never allowed the weak to speak terms with her. It was only at this point that she had decided to stand on equal grounds and make a promise she would keep.
The Demoness’ terms didn’t come as a surprise for Qianye’s side.
But Anwen, Edward, and Basil found it difficult to believe her decision. The right to use the Constellation Well represented Evernight’s interests, but letting go of a hostage for a temporary ceasefire didn’t mean they wouldn’t be killed afterward. Every reasonable person would pick the former, but such common sense did not exist for the Demoness.
The Demoness had hunted Qianye down for so long in vain. Even a temporary ceasefire would be a sign of compromise on her part. How could she be willing to talk terms? Besides, something similar had happened before and she had not hesitated in the slightest back then, ultimately causing the entire Vermillion Prison clan to fall out with the demonkin elder assembly.
Those who knew the Demoness were ready to fight for a chance at life. Who would’ve thought the Demoness would suggest such a condition?
Qianye, of course, had no idea what those experts were thinking. He immediately turned toward Zhao Ruoxi after hearing the Demoness’ terms. “That’s all?”
Zhao Ruoxi said nothing, but a red spider lily beside her withered.
Basil, who had been watching nervously, jumped up in fright. Edward patted himself all over, Eden covered his eyes, and Anwen covered himself in a complicated polyhedron.
But, they quickly discovered that nothing was happening.
Only Qianye heard a voice, “Brother.”
“What’s up, Ruoxi?”
“Nothing, I just wanted to try calling you that.”
The neutral lands, at the edge of the Eastern Sea continent.
A vampire marquis suddenly halted in the blizzard, listening attentively to something.
“Jared, go ask the natives for a person.”
“Yes, Your Highness. Who do you want?”
“Understood. What if the natives refuse to cooperate?”
“Then tell them that I’ll kill a hundred of their people each day until they do.”
“Yes, Your Highness.”
“Your Highness, what should I do afterward?”
“Bring her here.”
“Your Highness, this…”
“No this or that. Have you forgotten again?”
“Yes, Your Highness.”
A weird, cautious silence pervaded the air around the Constellation Well.
The camps of the Empire and Evernight stood on either side of the chasm. The Imperial camp stood close to the mountain and forest, overlooking the well. Despite its small size, it was well organized and impressive.
Within the camp, Song Zining was carrying a newly carved wooden board. With a stretch of his finger, several leaves shot into the board, nailing it to the pole and filling the last gap in the outer fence.
Although his cultivation wasn’t low, he was sweating after all the manual labor. He wiped his sweat away and gazed enviously at the Evernight camp on the other side.
The Evernight camp was much bigger. Not only was it four times in area, but there was also a tall sentry tower at its center. This structure actually had no use at all because the Demoness’ domain was a better sentry than any tower could hope to be.
So what if they had assigned sentries on the tower? Be it Qianye’s Bloodline Concealment or Song Zining’s Three Thousand Flying Leaves Art were neither abilities any ordinary experts could see through. As for Zhao Ruoxi and her Red Spider Lily, they could even suppress the Demoness in the Great Maelstrom. This tower was hence just for show and to fulfill a sense of existence.
Such a childish display of power had no effect on Qianye, and Song Zining’s face was as thick as a wall, so he didn’t mind either. But, someone was really angered.
Song Zining wiped the sweat off his brows and was just about to drink some water when Zhao Ruoxi’s voice rang in his ears, “Goofing off again! Have you built the camp? Have you done your chores? How are we going to sleep at night?”
Song Zining laughed wryly as he said to the flower that had appeared in front of him. “Ruoxi…”
“Who allowed you to call me Ruoxi?”
“Fine, fine. Young Miss Zhao, I’ve never stopped working!”
“Is this enough to exhaust a future strategist god of the Empire?”
“We’re in the Great Maelstrom now, not the Empire. Everything is several times more tiring than usual. I can’t hold out anymore. Besides, a strategist god is no war god! Who can do this much apart from that monster, Qianye?”
“Humph! My brother is naturally stronger than you!”
“True, true. Qianye is the strongest, mightiest, and coolest.”
The series of shameless compliments worked well on Zhao Ruoxi. Her voice became much gentler as she said, “You have good insight.”
However, she had underestimated just how thick Song Zining’s face was. He immediately started following the lead. “That’s a given. I’m the future strategist god, how can I not know that much?”
Zhao Ruoxi merely snorted. Apparently, she no longer wanted to talk to him.
Song Zining had just finished drinking when Qianye appeared from behind and slapped his shoulder. “Mr. Future Strategist God, do tell us how you got caught.”
Blushing, Song Zining looked left and right. “Ah, that. The camp hasn’t been completed yet, I should go back to work.”
He was dragged back immediately. “This camp has no big use, all it can do is stop some wild beasts. Now back to actual business!”
Song Zining glared at him. “How can we rest without a proper camp? Where do we sleep at night?”
Qianye was stunned. “Sleep? Of course we should cultivate, why sleep?”
The Great Maelstrom was a holy land for cultivation. Although the Constellation Well was far inferior compared to the high-gravity regions, it was still a couple of times better than the outside world. Who would sleep so thoughtlessly instead of forging ahead under such favorable circumstances?
At first, Song Zining wanted to repeat Zhao Ruoxi’s words ad verbatim, but Qianye apparently had no sense of humor. Even someone of Song Zining’s eloquence and wit could only give up. “What business?”
“How did you get caught?”
“Well…” Song Zining laughed awkwardly, hoping to gloss over it. He failed miserably, of course.
He stopped with the nonsense and got down to explaining the process. Song Zining had just stepped out of the high-gravity region when he fell headfirst into the Demoness’ domain. The seventh young master could perceive domains down to the finest details and was even stronger than Qianye in that regard. Immediately noticing that something wasn’t quite right, he activated the Three Thousand Flying Leaves Art to clear away the surrounding domain and got ready to flee.
Who would’ve thought the Demoness would arrive in front of him in the blink of an eye?”
“After a long battle with her, I grew exhausted and was subsequently captured…” Song Zining said fearlessly.
Qianye naturally didn’t believe Song Zining. Qianye was the true number one in terms of familiarity with the Demoness, even above Anwen.
He cut Song Zining short, saying, “It would’ve been a miracle if you had lasted three minutes.”
Song Zining turned red and silent. The majority of his power lay in the domain of the Three Thousand Flying Leaves Art, but it just so happened that domains were the Demoness’ forte.
Being exposed made Song Zining redder and redder. He was just tidying his clothes when Qianye grabbed his wrist. “How is your injury? Just now…”
Song Zining whipped his hand back and looked about. Seeing that neither Zhao Ruoxi nor her flowers were nearby, he said in a whisper, “Qianye, shouldn’t you keep that little ancestor of yours in check?”
The seriousness in Qianye’s heart dissipated after being diverted to such a topic. Not knowing whether to laugh or to cry, he said, “You do it if you want.”
“She’s from your Zhao clan! I’m an outsider.”
“How do you want me to keep her in check?”
Song Zining gave it some thought. “She won’t be in danger with the Red Spider Lily in hand, even if she’s messing around…”
Qianye nodded. “The Red Spider Lily seems to be much more powerful here, but the strain on her is actually smaller. That’s really odd.”
Song Zining’s stance was firm. “Even so, we can’t let her stay here for too long. This is the Great Maelstrom, after all. The environmental effects are too great, and she has no origin power. Even if she’s protected by the Red Spider Lily, we should be cautious.”
Qianye sighed. “How do you want me to persuade her?”
No one could deal with her stubbornness.
Song Zining said, “Let’s have her return once things are settled with the Constellation Well. As long as everyone maintains a unified opinion, she probably won’t be too willful. That means… having her round up the Imperial experts is actually a good thing.”
Before long, the origin power in the air rippled, and several figures came into view. In addition to Li Kuanglan, Ji Tianqing, Wei Potian, and Zhao Yuying, there were a number of Imperial experts who looked a bit familiar.
Zhao Ruoxi flew into camp after everyone had arrived. “Are there any others?”
The Red Spider Lily was unimaginably powerful. It was by relying on the summoning of red spider lilies that Zhao Ruoxi was able to search the entire surroundings of the Constellation Well and round up all the experts.
However, Qianye’s expression couldn’t help but shift after seeing that giant wolf behind her.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
TL: Legion ED: Moxie