Among the Yama Kings of the Ten Halls, Zhaoqing was the most mysterious. Lu Yun couldn’t read her memories, nor see what she’d experienced during her life. In fact, he couldn’t even share her talents.
As the daughter of a divine emperor, she was without a doubt the strongest of the ten, even though her current cultivation was only at the peerless immortal realm.
“There’s no rush.” Lu Yun gently shook his head at her. “All of you should first consolidate the Invincible Yama Method. There’s still two big fellows waiting for us outside.”
It hadn’t been long since the Yama Kings had familiarized themselves with the method; more time was needed for them to fully grasp it. Lu Yun had also scanned the cultivation method and came away astonished that it contained many of the improved arts and methods he’d developed with Qing Yu through formula dao!
“It seems that the Tome of Life and Death isn’t a stickler for tradition.” The hint of a smile floated onto his lips.
With a gentle beckon, the floating peak that housed the resurrection layout slowly materialized into existence. It’d been driven into the ground by all the chaos earlier. When it fully took form, he released Qing Yu and the others from the Demonic Sovereign Cauldron.
“What is this place?!” The netherworld’s scenery and atmosphere left Lin Yu thunderstruck.
“We are no longer in the world of immortals, this is another world altogether.” Lin Xuan flipped through the book in his hand, using its contents to assess the situation.
“This is my world. You can rest safely here.” Lu Yun explained with a glance at Qing Yu.
The latter naturally knew of hell. As for the little fox, she squirmed out of Qing Yu’s arms and jumped on top of Lu Yun’s head.
“The aura of yin is dense in this place, and I can’t sense any yang energy whatsoever. Living creatures can’t exist here.” The little fox fell deep in thought. “Can this place be…”
She rested her stomach on Lu Yun’s head and dangled her head down, peering deep into his eyes and whispered mischievously, “Can this be the world of the dead that the legends speak of?”
Lu Yun yanked the furball down and tossed her into a corner of the resurrection layout, then locked her inside.
The little bundle of fur shot an aggrieved look at Qing Yu. But aware of Lu Yun’s long-nursed jealousy, she quickly looked away and pretended she hadn’t seen anything.
Meanwhile, Yueshen exited Li Youcai’s body and flew to the center of the new kingdom, whereupon she joined in the construction efforts. For her, this was her home. Compared to the former divine race, hell brought her a deeper sense of belonging.
Occupying the ten directions of the netherworld, the ten Yama Halls towered over the world like ten stone guardians. As for hell’s completely destroyed ‘City of Life’, it was being rebuilt as the City of the Dead!
A considerable amount of time later, the ten Yama Kings began to shimmer with dark golden light as exotic armor materialized on them, a sign that they’d achieved rudimentary mastery of the Invincible Yama Method.
“Master!” Zhaoqing approached Lu Yun and fell on one knee. Now that she’d taken human form, the pure white armor on her lent an air of unsullied sanctity.
“A-a-aren’t you…” Lin Yu stared at her with a double take. He’d followed Lu Yun into the lineal tomb and seen the palace coffin, so he’d already met her before and knew who she was.
An emperor’s daughter!
Though he didn’t know what the identification ‘emperor’s daughter’ implied, or what differentiated the great emperors of old from the celestial emperors of the current age, she was for him an incomparably terrifying figure nevertheless.
Dumbfounded, Lin Xuan also shared his brother’s sentiment. How had Lu Yun recruited such an awesome figure into his service?
“All of you stay here while I go out and deal with the two big monsters.” Seeing Ge Long make no move to leave the netherworld, Lu Yun didn’t say anything about having him deal with the stone spirit and demon god. He’d vaguely grasped that Ge Long must be under some kind of restriction in the outside world.
And now that the ten Yama Kings had finished cultivating, Lu Yun saw no reason to tarry any longer. He would have to face the two monsters sooner or later, in any case.
“I’m coming with you!” Qing Yu stood up, her voice firm. “No matter what, I’m going to fight by your side this time. Taking shelter here is out of the question!”
Her eyes gleamed with determination. The Scroll of Shepherding Immortals had been created from the essence of God; therefore, it was bound to play a vital role inside the divine tombs that this God had left his mark on.
“We’re also coming!” Lin Xuan breathed in deeply. “When we go out, we’ll immediately summon the Demon-Destroying Patriarch… Isn’t the demon god still a demon when it comes down to it? The patriarch specializes in quelling entities like him!”
While there was a forty-nine day limitation to the art, it was a death art that accepted time in hell as a valid counter. Their stay inside the netherworld had long exceeded that number, thus resetting the clock.
“Well then, I-I think I’ll stay here,” the little fox muttered under her breath and sprawled belly-up on the ground.
But Qing Yu beckoned with her hand and pulled the furball into her grasp, then tossed her onto Lin Xuan’s head. The fox had half a mind to weep and bawl with the injustice of life.
“Alright then… Go into the Demonic Sovereign Cauldron for now. And remember, when we go out, your own safety comes first!” Lu Yun heaved a sigh.
Qing Yu and the others were bound to deal with many things by themselves one day. He couldn’t keep them sheltered forever, and this was as good an opportunity as any for them to experience a life and death situation.
When Lu Yun returned to the palace coffin, Liu Chen was still looking in his direction after following the demon god’s gaze. But when he saw ‘Yin Qingran’ on his own without Zhaoqing by his side, dispiritedness settled in.
The two monsters had waded into a pitched battle and made the entire Exalted Divine Tombs their arena, shaking the entirety of Mount Exalted!
Sending the Exalted celestial emperor flying with a sweep of its arms, the stone spirit extinguished the Exalted Chart’s mysterious light. Vomiting blood, the emperor shot through the air like a ragdoll before crashing heavily into a giant tombstone.
Some human-headed octopi waded through the air and immediately pounced on him, their tentacles snaking toward their prey.
White meteors streaked through the firmament and blasted the octopi to pieces. Previously sent out of the tomb by the celestial emperor, Qi Hai had made his return. Three hundred and sixty-five pills revolved around him and a longsword glinted with frosty light in his grasp.
“Celestial Emperor of Exalted Major, you think too little of me.” His expression was cold and impassive, and the sword in his hand abruptly turned invisible.
Something lacerated the human-headed octopi in the air, sectioning their bodies into many pieces that fell to the ground. This combat art didn’t belong to immortal dao… but to human dao!
“You should’ve stayed away. It’s too late now! Even more ancient tombs have broken open, and corpse demons more terrible than before are about to come into the world… Exalted Major is done for!” Despite Qi Hai’s show of force, there was no joy to be seen on the celestial emperor’s face. His eyes contained nothing but despair and horror.
The previous corpse demons had merely been ones arisen from the bodies of the divine court’s divines. But now, buried deep underground, the dead divine powerhouses from the era of human dao had also been corrupted by the demonic energy and were gradually awakening.
A lengthy demonic howl started below the ground, turning the previously inky land a bright scarlet.
An Ichor Bog.
The mausoleum had unexpectedly become a swamp of blood! Crimson arms shot out of the mess and latched onto the stone spirit, trying to drag him underground.