Leaf Dao-Denier knew how powerful Empress Joyflower was.
But how could he have guessed that she would be capable of this? She seemed as perceptive as a god! He had barely revealed any information, yet she was able to extrapolate deep secrets from it.
It begged the question of what her level of will convergence was.
“Empress, you are truly able to distinguish the tiniest details of matters. You're absolutely right. With seven of King Immortal-Slayer's legacy medallions, Yang Qi can easily enter the Myriad Worlds Monarch Chart. Furthermore, he can use the chart to create incredibly realistic power doubles. It’s a daoist technique on the level of the gods. Empress, is there any way you can give me the ability to identify such power doubles?”
That was Leaf Dao-Denier’s top priority right now. Without being able to tell whether or not he was dealing with a power double, how could he possibly deal with Yang Qi?
But if he could tell the difference, he could create a foolproof plan to catch Yang Qi completely unawares and hopefully take him captive. He would just bide his time until Yang Qi showed up as his true self, under the assumption that Leaf Dao-Denier thought him to be a power double.
In his heart, he chuckled darkly at the cleverness of his plan.
“He can create power doubles that you can’t identify?” The Empress’ curiosity was piqued. “Even with your eyes? How is that possible? I gifted you with the Taiji God Eye, which can pierce through countless magics. The only way this person could possibly surpass it would be if he had eight of King Immortal-Slayer's legacy medallions, and had created a virtual god world in the Myriad Worlds Monarch Chart. That’s the only way he could possibly pull the wool over your eyes.”
“Eight legacy medallions?!” Leaf Dao-Denier blurted in shock. As someone who had once possessed some of the legacy medallions, he was familiar with how they worked, and knew that with each additional piece that one acquired one would unlock even more unfathomable abilities.
To hear talk of eight of the medallions producing a virtual god world filled his heart with envy. He couldn’t help but ask why it was Yang Qi who had done this, and not himself.
It was completely outrageous!
“There are only nine of King Immortal-Slayer’s legacy medallions, and Proud Heaven used to have three….” Upon mentioning Proud Heaven’s name, the empress’ voice seemed to tremble a bit. “That means that, somehow, this Yang Qi managed to take two of Proud Heaven’s medallions? If so, it means that Proud Heaven has turned the unwitting Yang Qi into a pawn.”
“Proud Heaven? One of the ten magisters of the future world? You know of him, Empress?”
“I don’t just know of him,” the empress replied coolly. “Years ago, I had dealings with him on the Ancient Road to the Gods. He’s sinister, treacherous, vicious, and a profound tactician and strategist. If there’s anyone outside the god world that I fear, it’s definitely him. If you ever encounter him, back down immediately. Hear me? You’re absolutely not a match for him. The entire reason I’ve worked so hard to improve my techniques and get my hands on true godhood is so that I can deal with him.”
“Yes, ma’am,” Leaf Dao-Denier said, bowing his head further. Of course, he had a very different attitude in his heart. ‘Proud Heaven? Yang Qi? You think I care about them? I'm eventually going to trample them all beneath my feet. Only I deserve to be the ultimate monarch, the ultimate lord! Anyone who gets in my path will be a mere stepping stone to dominance!’
Keeping such thoughts completely hidden, he said, “Empress, please, can you give me some way to deal with Yang Qi?”
She maintained silence for a long moment, then said, “If he has eight of those legacy medallions, it’s possible his will is on the same level as mine, the peak of Destabilizing. What a pity, Leaf Dao-Denier. You should be at Destabilizing too, but instead you're only at Stupendous, which means that you can’t unleash the quintessence of the power within you. Fine. How about this. I’ll give you a legendary secret magic created by the boundless King of Mage-Gods. Cultivate it, and your will should reach the Destabilizing level. Once that happens, you’ll truly be able to pursue the dao of gods. After you achieve that breakthrough of will, you’ll be on your own. Not even blessings of power from me will help you then.”
Even as the words left her mouth, a seed floated down onto Leaf Dao-Denier’s palm.
His hand instantly began sinking down, as the seed weighed more than a mountain. Obviously, it contained a boundless and majestic psychic power that would allow him to create psychic tempests that could rip apart universes.
Meanwhile, a profound and mysterious will of magic entered him.
“I need to remain in seclusion to continue assimilating this godhood power,” the empress said. “That's the only way for me to further my energy arts. Going forward, don’t interrupt me for any reason, understand?”
“Yes, yes of course. I’ll work on this breakthrough, then go deal with Yang Qi. Once I get the Aeonic God Temple and King Immortal-Slayer's legacy medallions, I’ll hand them over to you, Empress.”
“I'm very pleased with your devotion. Don’t worry, if you get your hands on those items, I’ll be sure to share them with you.” With that, she sent a stream of soft power out to remove Leaf Dao-Denier from her presence.
With him gone, the area returned to its state of seemingly complete emptiness.
‘Yang Qi… Proud Heaven…. How exactly are you using this pawn of yours, Proud Heaven? I need to look into this further. I have a feeling Leaf Dao-Denier isn’t capable of handling this situation. However, I have a plan to deal with this pawn of yours. In fact, perhaps I can even convert this Yang Qi into a pawn of my own.
‘All I need to do is use my will to suppress the will of the true god in this godhood, vanquish the knowledge-devils, then break through to the Terrifying level of will. At that point, Proud Heaven, you and the other magisters will fall to my hand! Terrifying will is that of the gods, and not even your ten magisters have reached that level. You fooled me last time, Proud Heaven, but this time I'm going to wipe out your future world and take your God Legion Seal.’
Elsewhere in the palace, Leaf Dao-Denier sealed himself into seclusion, then burst out into hearty laughter. ‘A psychic seed from the King of Mage-Gods! Destabilizing will!’
He popped the seed into his mouth and began assimilating it. ‘I, Leaf Dao-Denier, am truly a lucky person. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have been born a Fortuned One, then devoured Eldest Brother Secundus to become an Eternal One as well. I've had some setbacks along the way, but I never lost confidence. I'm going to kill you, Yang Qi! You just wait. Once I have Destabilizing will, you’re dead! Of course, before that, I’ll use you to help bring down the Joyflower Palace.’
As usual, Leaf Dao-Denier was ruthless, arrogant, and egotistical.
But his will was strong, vastly beyond Grand Emperor Myriadmagic Heavenspan and his companions. After all, the Grand Emperors were already considering giving in to Yang Qi, whereas Leaf Dao-Denier refused to stop fighting him. He had been beaten repeatedly by Yang Qi, but would not give up. In fact, his hatred only grew.
That was what came with an extreme will like his.
His hatred only continued to reach new levels of extremity.
‘I hate you, Yang Qi! I'm going to rip you to pieces. My life won’t have any meaning until you’re dead at my hands. That is my most pressing and vital goal. Destroy you! Then I can move on to handling other matters. With the help of the King of Mage-Gods, I'm going to achieve a breakthrough in will!’ Deep within his sea of consciousness was his nascent divinity, which was being assaulted by an explosive wave of devastating will.
The psychic seed he had taken was cracking and crumbling, allowing a will to seep out that should have completely erased his mind.
However, because of his hatred, jealousy, madness, and arrogance, he was able to dominate it.
In the blink of an eye, he sagged, turning into little more than skin and bones. But then, a moment later, he reverted to his previous state.
He had subjugated the will of the King of Mage-Gods and was using it to bolster his nascent divinity.
It was as if he had opened a pathway to the god world, which caused the ruthless emotions of the gods to fill him. In the blink of an eye, he became even more merciless and sinister than before.
He floated up into the air and began rotating faster and faster, until, all of a sudden, a tremor passed through him and his clothes were ripped to shreds, leaving him stark naked, his muscles and skin perfect, yet shining with a vicious, wicked luster. He seemed wretched and righteous at the same time, yet neither of those, as if he were a devil-god from some unknown plane of existence in the god world.
It was as if a hell-born fiend-devil had ascended to the god world and combined the bodies of both a god and a devil.
His will had risen to the Destabilizing level, giving him even greater control over his power. In terms of strength, nascent divinity, and cultivation level, he was higher than ever, and was definitely at the point of being able to tell the difference between Yang Qi’s true self and power doubles.
‘Not that I’ll tell you that, Yang Qi! You’ll have no idea that I've reached the Destabilizing level once I use my Taiji Concealment Magic!’ His aura trembled, and a moment later he seemed like he was before, with Stupendous will.
‘And now, Yang Qi, the time has come to start working together. I’ll simply wait for the right moment to lure your true self out of the Myriad Worlds Monarch Chart. And then you’ll be mine!’
Smiling arrogantly, he strolled out into the open to find Yang Qi.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
I was on the podcast "A Writer's Experience" in which I talk about what Chinese fantasy novels are and how to write them. I discuss playing roleplaying games with Baby Deathblade, how to get into being a translator, and what it was like teaching in China. It's only about 20 minutes long, so this is a great intro for people unfamiliar with me and my work. I also include recommendations of where to start. All-in-all this is a great intro podcast, so I recommend it as a good resource to share with friends/family who are new to our little niche scene. The podcast is available on numerous platform, click here to pick your poison. (the episode with me will remain on the top until the next episode of the podcast comes out).