Chapter 523.1: Lungs?

Blood dragon, blood phoenix, blood qilin, and blood turtle!

The birth of any of these four demons heralded disaster for the world and suffering for its inhabitants, and each was backed by an evil coffin.

The Enneawyrm Coffinbearers, Nine-Phoenix Casket, Enneaqilin Coffinbiers, and Ninefooted Turtle Cist!

According to legend, those coffins had originally been the bodies of the four sacred beasts—four grand existences turned into vessels of burial. As for what exactly they were intended to inter, nobody knew.

Three of those evil coffins rested in hell, but Lu Yun had no desire to crack them open. Whatever was interred within them had apparently broken free of their restrictions, and curiosity wasn’t a good enough reason for him to provoke them.

His Spectral Eye immediately identified that the crimson rack buried in the nascent spirit soil belonged to a blood turtle. This demon had risen and died countless eons before.

Should I make it an Envoy of Samsara? Lu Yun was very much tempted to. He had a blood dragon, blood phoenix, and blood qilin as envoys already. He was very close to collecting all four!

When he’d encountered a blood qilin corpse before, his cultivation and mastery over the Tome of Life and Death hadn’t been strong enough to turn the blood demon that’d melded with its past identity into an envoy.

This time, he was a returned void cultivator. The wisdom he’d gained from the grand influence over heaven and earth had taught him many new things about the Tome of Life and Death. He was now more than capable of reviving a blood demon and taming it on the spot.

“In you go!” Placing a hand on the turtle skeleton, Lu Yun sent it to hell. A moment later, he dashed in himself as well.

All eight of his envoys were sitting together with Qing Yu in the center, heatedly discussing ways to analyze and research the combat arts of others. The floating peak of the resurrection layout was carved full of runes and derivation methods.

To Lu Yun, they rather resembled the math formulas he knew from back on Earth.

“Lu Yun!” Qing Yu stood up immediately when she saw him, face flushed with excitement.  

“Sir!” Yuying and the others followed suit.

“Carry on with what you were doing, don’t mind me.” Lu Yun waved with a smile.

“Lu Yun, Lu Yun, you need to figure out how to get some more geniuses in here. There’s only a few pieces of the puzzle left, and we can’t figure it out with our current group!”

After some consideration, Qing Yu didn’t suggest releasing Empress Myrtlestar and the Azure Dragon King. The two ancients had taken good care of them, but they needed the two youngsters to help them recover and eventually bring them back into life.

In other words, it was a fair exchange.

If the ancient lords found out about the Tome of Life and Death and the existence of hell, it might incite their greed.

Qi Hai had been suggested earlier as well, but Su Xiaoxiao had vetoed that idea.

In her words, if Qi Hai knew they were trying to figure out a method like this, he would immediately take it for his own and do everything he could to prevent its propagation.

In the Primordial Era, he’d been the foremost pill master of the world, but he’d also been the only person privy to the majority of pill dao’s secrets. After his ‘death’, pill dao had pretty much disappeared overnight.

He’d schemed against Su Xiaoxiao because of her attempts to spread the fruits of her research into medical dao; she’d wanted more immortals to grasp the healing arts.

Qi Hai’s pettiness and narrowmindedness festered a deep-abiding hatred for this action. Thus, he came up with an idea to force Su Xiaoxiao’s hand in killing several worlds’ worth of denizens, then destroyed her cultivation and banished her.

She only learned of all this a very long time afterward. If Qi Hai’s knowledge of medical dao had been complete in the past, he probably would’ve killed Su Xiaoxiao on the spot.

Lu Yun had seen all of this in his envoy’s memories, hence marking his first impression of Qi Hai.

……

“Don’t worry, I’ll have someone with you straight away!” Lu Yun grinned. “Ninth Envoy, take your place!”

Fwoom...

A resonant hum later, a several-dozen-meter-long crimson bone floated into the air. All of hell’s power concentrated upon it. Within the span of a breath, endless scarlet flooded the world as a slender shadow paced out from the void.

“Ninth Envoy of Samsara, Luli, greets the master.” The light faded, revealing an ivory figure that slowly knelt down before Lu Yun.

She continued the tradition of envoys being stark naked at their first appearance. Lu Yun didn’t dare look much; in fact, he fidgeted awkwardly while sneaking a glance at Qing Yu.

The young woman’s pout was painfully visible.

Lu Yun conjured a blood-red dress for Luli with a flick of his fingers.

“You may rise.”

“Thank you, master.” Luli’s voice was frigid and emotionless. Even when speaking respectfully to Lu Yun, her tone was devoid of passion.

“Over there is your mistress!” Lu Yun pointed toward Qing Yu. “Treat her as you would me from now on, alright?”

“Understood.” Luli nodded, then curtseyed to Qing Yu.

The ninth envoy was certainly a headturner, but her beauty was eclipsed by a fiendish malevolence swirling around her, one that threatened to annihilate all things. She was a pure blood demon through and through.

In the past, her sanguine self had combined with her identity in life to wreak widespread devastation, which made her different from Aoxue, Huangqing, and Cangyin.

Aoxue’s blood demon body had been in an embryonic form, while Huangqing had only just developed hers when she’d become an envoy—it hadn’t merged with her identity yet. As for Cangyin, she’d only become a blood qilin through bloodline modification by Su Xiaoxiao and Xingzi.

Though Luli had the same ‘Lu’ character as Lu Yun for her surname, she was an undeniable blood demon. That hadn’t changed even after becoming an envoy.

In fact, Lu Yun barely found anything useful in her memories. There was only death and destruction. There was no shortage of demonic arts and methods, though, and she was particularly skilled at murder and slaughter.

Luli will be useful as a dagger in the darkness. She can take care of the dirty work! Lu Yun instantly settled on a purpose for his latest addition. As a killing machine, Luli’s superb intelligence couldn’t be applied to researching combat arts or cultivation methods. Rather, she had no interest in them whatsoever.

“Ge Long!” he roared suddenly into the darkness.

“Yes, yes! I’m on my way, milord!” A yawning old man jogged out of the depths of hell into his master’s presence, all the while trying his utmost to convey fawning attention.

After gobbling down the cultivator-killing restriction… thing last time, Ge Long had fallen into a deep sleep. He’d managed to wake up only recently.

Time practically stopped inside whenever Lu Yun entered hell. In other words, Ge Long had slept for at least a few hundred years. The old servant was still just golden core realm, but his gaze had become more enigmatic than ever.

“What are those?” The runes and formulae upon the floating peak caught his eye, turning his expression into one of thunderstruck disbelief.

“Go help your matriarch figure it out,” said Lu Yun.

“Aye!” Ge Long pranced over joyfully. He was practically beaming with happiness; the inscribed work evidently interested him greatly.

A well-concealed look of terror flashed through Luli’s icy eyes when the old man approached. Lu Yun noticed, but said nothing of it.

……

As before, Lu Yun refrained from participating in the research himself. This opportunity belonged to Qing Yu; if he joined in, his presence would change certain things and he might end up stealing her fortune from her.

She was the dao sovereign anointed the Dao Flower, while he ruled over life and death. It wouldn’t do for him to interfere in a matter outside his domain.  

It was for that same reason that he’d so contentedly protected Qing Han and the others by the Dao Flower’s side. If he’d intervened back then, the dao sovereigns neverwould have come into being—he would be the only one. He would have been the be all and end all of everything.

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etvolare's Thoughts

The title doesn't match the chapter because chapter lengths got a bit wonky here. 523 and 524 combined are three+ chapter's worth of content, so I chopped the second part of 523 and fused it with a first part of 524 to smooth over the overall reading lengths. One of them still might be longer than the usual, depending on scene breaks.