The Joyflower Palace was in the middle of hosting a lavish banquet.
Empress Joyflower was feeling very pleased with herself. She had issued orders to thousands of sect leaders from first-tier sects to attend, all with the intention of giving them to various disciples and eldresses, almost like property. To the sect leaders, it was an enormous humiliation.
That said, none of them dared to give voice to a peep of anger.
The eldresses were all laughing amongst themselves as they looked on. At one point, one of them pointed at one of the sect leaders and said, “You’re the leader of the Secret Spectrum Society, right? You almost captured me a while back, remember? Not so cocky now, are we? Now that our empress is in the Terrifying level, she could wipe out a thousand sects like yours in the blink of an eye!”
The sect leader was normally a dignified and imposing man, but right now he was nearly apoplectic with anger. “When the enemy yields, you should spare his life! Can’t you people stick to your word and let my sect off the hook?”
“Stick to our word?” the eldress burst out laughing. “Why would the Joyflower Palace need to do that with people like you? Besides, we already dealt with your sect the moment you arrived at the banquet. The men have already been castrated and turned into eunuchs, and the women have mostly been made into thralls.”
“You!” the sect lord blurted, nearly coughing up a mouthful of blood. “My poor people! How could you people be so ruthless!?”
“Ruthless?” the eldress said. “Get on your knees! Lick my feet to show your allegiance, and maybe I’ll spare your life. I know that you have one of the three thousand special constitutions. You’re a Spectral One! Absorbing your blood will definitely be very helpful to my cultivation!”
“You might as well stop dreaming!” the sect leader shouted back. “I’ll die before I become a consort to you. Bring it on. Go ahead and kill me!”
“I'm afraid we won't respect your wishes,” Empress Joyflower said, “regardless of whether you’re pleading for life, or death. It seems to me I need to make an example of you, to make sure everyone knows what happens when you defy the Joyflower Palace.”
Her eyes blazed, and the sect leader was suddenly wrenched up into the air as if he had been grabbed by an enormous, invisible hand.
But then a cold snort echoed out, and he dropped back down.
“How impressive, Empress Joyflower,” someone said. “You reached the Terrifying level, so you think you can shake all heaven and earth now? You think no one is worthy of you now? The sect leader of the Secret Spectrum Society is a grand and heroic individual, and I've taken a liking to him. In fact, I'm taking him as an apprentice!”
All of a sudden, Yang Qi appeared in the middle of the grand hall.
Countless people leaped to their feet in shock, and numerous members of the Joyflower Palace drew their weapons.
Empress Joyflower was visibly taken aback, but upon catching sight of Yang Qi, she smiled. “Oh, it's you. But why are you being so stupid as to throw yourself right into my hands? You’re obviously not in the Terrifying level yet, so get on your knees and agree to become my consort. Help me deal with Proud Heaven, and also, give me back all those treasures you took.”
“Ai,” Yang Qi sighed, shaking his head. “If you want to talk about stupid people, I’d say the one who takes the cake is you. Even when your sect is about to be destroyed, you still think you have everything under control. Be sealed!”
Magical power erupted from Yang Qi, filling the area, enveloping the Joyflower Palace and the Passionless God Flower, wrapping it up like a cocoon. Then that cocoon began to shrink down, pulsing with the power of tribulations.
“Imperial-heaven pre-beginning!” Yang Qi said, and sound waves rolled out, causing the entire palace to violently tremble. Instantly, the magical laws became ten thousand times stronger, causing many people to scream in alarm.
“The magical laws are so much tougher! I can’t fly! I can hardly move!”
“What’s going on? How could this be happening?”
“My true energy! I can’t release it into the open. The magical laws of space are so strong!”
“The spatial magical laws have basically turned me into a mortal! I can hardly even jump off the ground. From what I’ve heard, this is what the god world is like. Don’t tell me this place is turning into the god world?”
All of a sudden, Empress Joyflower’s face fell.
“That’s right,” Yang Qi said, “I've used imperial-heaven pre-beginning powers to take control of the Passionless God Flower. And now I'm going to take the Passionless God-King’s tear!” He extended his hand toward the treasure storehouse in the depths of the palace, and cracking sounds could be heard as he destroyed various warding magics. Then the last god formation flew out and into his hand. Everyone watched as a tear flew out, pulsing with boundless grief. It vanished as soon as it touched Yang Qi’s palm, and he smiled.
In the blink of an eye, all of the functions of the Joyflower Palace ceased to operate.
He could produce clouds with one turn of the hand and rain with another. It was as simple as that. Everyone was terrified of the Joyflower Palace, but in the shortest of moments, everything had changed.
There is always a heaven beyond heaven, and there are always people more important than you.
Empress Joyflower rose from her throne, cold sweat already dripping down her back.
“I've locked down the Joyflower Palace,” Yang Qi continued. “Within the energy field I've created, even Terrifying experts are the same as mortals. Jumping will be difficult for you, much less flying. That said, the only person here worth fighting is you, Empress. So what do you say? Care to have a fair match with me?”
“A fair match?” she replied, her eyes flashing. “How did you get this strong? This is all you, not help from a magical treasure. And where is that thing of yours? I don't sense its presence anywhere.”
She was obviously referring to the God Legion Seal, but wasn’t willing to say the name aloud. She knew that if she did, it could lead to the instant destruction of the entire sect; she was fully aware of how vicious and merciless Yang Qi could be. If he wanted to wipe out a sect, he would do so.
“No comment,” Yang Qi replied. Reaching out toward the empress with splayed fingers, he said, “You were Proud Heaven’s woman, right? I'm interested in getting a better idea of his taste in women.”
Even as the energy spread out from him, Empress Joyflower released her own true energy with explosive force.
“Passionless in All Creation!
“Heartless and Asexual!”
She unleashed a host of killing moves that originated from the Passionless God-King, but everyone could see that they were useless. Yang Qi’s five fingers smashed through all of them, then landed on her neck, which he grabbed, lifting her up in front of him like a baby chicken.
“You’re so strong,” she gurgled hopelessly. She had reached the ultimate heights only to have everything crashing down around her. Moments ago, she had been triumphantly humiliating the sect leaders of countless first-tier sects, but now she was the one being humiliated. This was true karmic retribution.
“Well, what do you think? Proud Heaven’s woman?” Yang Qi chuckled as he ran his hand down her smooth cheek. Of course, inside, he was as cold as ice and didn't feel a thing. “What did he write to you in that letter of his? I tried to check for myself just now, but it was nowhere to be found in the storehouse....”
“How… how did you get this strong?” she gasped, truly confused at what Yang Qi had done.
“Enough!” Yang Qi sent some psychic power stabbing into her sea of consciousness, instantly crushing her nascent divinity and will. Her eyes went wild, but soon turned placid; the Terrifying will convergence she had been so proud of was vanquished by a single move.
“You have a strong will,” she said. “Alright, fine. I’ll join you. You won’t refuse an offer like that, will you? Think about it. I'm a Terrifying expert. You have no powerful organization of your own, thus you have no way to fight back against the future world. Besides, I also want to see Proud Heaven dead.”
“No organization of my own?” Yang Qi said coolly. “Actually, I'm the junior sectlord of a superpower sect from the Ancient Road to the Gods. And you think I'm going to be impressed by a mere Terrifying expert? That’s a funny joke if ever I've heard one.
“That said, you could probably be of some use to me. All sects value Terrifying cultivators, so I suppose having you as a servant would be fine. First, though, I'm going to take the Passionless God Flower.”
Taking the Joyflower Palace with him, he flew up. Then, under the eyes of the empress herself, he used his imperial-heaven pre-beginning powers to shrink the Passionless God Flower down until it was the size of an ordinary flower that floated down into his palm.
“It's over,” the empress said, tears streaming down her face. “The organization I toiled so hard to create... destroyed, just like that. Nothing but ashes. How will I ever get my revenge on Proud Heaven now?”
“I’ll kill Proud Heaven,” Yang Qi said. “And if you think your sect is strong enough to use as a weapon against Proud Heaven, you’re stark raving mad. He could kill you without hardly lifting a finger. And now, I’ll enslave you and find out exactly what went on between you and Proud Heaven!”
Massive psychic fluctuations battered at Empress Joyflower’s mind.
However, at that very moment, something completely unexpected happened! A beam of golden-yellow sword energy suddenly appeared, stabbing right toward Yang Qi’s back before he had any idea what was happening. In the shortest of moments, he was put into incredible danger!
The sword energy slashed into him, causing cracks to spread out over his body. Not even the power of twenty-four tribulations was enough to defend him. Blood sprayed out of his mouth as he was sent flying off into the Great Necropolis.
Then, the golden sword energy continued on toward him, boring into his body as if to destroy him.
‘A consummate expert!’ Yang Qi thought.Previous Chapter Next Chapter