The Ice Empress stared at Huo Yuhao with a blank look on her face, and seemed a little lost.
Huo Yuhao heaved a faint sigh and said, “I have always had three wishes. My first wish is to avenge my mother, and for everybody who hurt her to pay. This is my duty as a son. My second wish is to find Dong’er again, so that we can be together, and that is for my own happiness. My third wish is to help you guys live on, and in a better life. You guys are the reason why I have achieved everything that I have, and to me, you are both teachers and friends. The only responsibility that remains after I have completed these three wishes will be to fight for Shrek and the Tang Sect.
“I truly wish to see my three wishes fulfilled. Therefore, brother Skydream, every one of you can leave if you are able to. I will not be upset at all. I only wish that we can still be friends afterwards.”
The Skydream Iceworm’s voice became a little lower. “But you know that if we leave you – perhaps what we have fused with you will remain in your body – what the Ice Empress, the Snow Empress, and I will take with us all the soul skills that we have bestowed upon you. Even the soul bone that the Ice Empress has given you will disappear. Your second martial soul will likely crumble, and your Spirit Eyes’ fourth soul skill will vanish with me. Even though you are a Soul Sage, your strength will very likely plummet.”
Huo Yuhao chuckled. “I have considered all of that. That’s not a problem, because I am not worried about all that as long as I can fulfill my three wishes. Brother Skydream, you don’t have to worry for me. I am no longer the same me as I was back then. With your help, at the very least, I am still a Soul Sage. Furthermore, I already have my soul core. I trust that I can regain my prowess with my own abilities. Even if I only have Spirit Eyes, I am still quite powerful! Don’t worry.”
The Skydream Iceworm sighed and turned around to look at the Ice Empress. “Have you heard him?”
The Ice Empress nodded silently.
The Skydream Iceworm said plainly, “So what is your decision?”
The Ice Empress didn’t answer directly. Instead, she asked the Skydream Iceworm a question. “If I choose to leave, then what about you? Will you leave with me?”
The Skydream Iceworm shook his head almost without hesitation as he said decisively, “No, I won’t.”
The Ice Empress frowned. “But you’ve said before that you like me. Why aren’t you willing to be with me?”
The Skydream Iceworm replied plainly, “Yes, I like you. No, I should say that I love you. You are one of the most important components of my life. However, Yuhao is the same.
“Yes, it was because of me that Yuhao’s strength has risen so quickly. However, on the other hand, I would probably no longer exist if I hadn’t run into him. We have always been relying on each other for survival and helping each other, and only then have we reached where we are today. Therefore, no matter what, whether Yuhao will touch that level successfully in the future, I will accompany him on his path. I will always be by his side whether he is successful or not. I am his companion, and I am also his elder brother. Just as you are, he has long become one of the most important parts of my life.
“Yuhao is right – he has a tremendous burden on his shoulders because of us. I trust that everything that he has said is sincere. Our departure for him might be a kind of liberation, but I will not leave, no matter what the future holds for us. I will stand with my brother.”
The Ice Empress’ expression turned a little bitter. “What about me? We both hold important places in your heart. Why won’t you choose to be with me?”
The Skydream Iceworm sighed and said, “How I wish I could be with you! I will wish the same in the future. However, I cannot follow you if you choose to leave. I will look for you only after I accompany Yuhao to finish the last days of his journey. If you are still alive then, I will come to you to protect you, and to accompany you. If you are no longer there, then I will find you in another world. Even though I am very afraid of death, I have to admit that I have been alive long enough. Love and friendship cannot be had at the same time; if your choice is right, and Yuhao’s choice is not right, then I will choose you. But now, you should understand what my choice is.”
“Hmph!” The Ice Empress grunted angrily. “You wait!”
The Skydream Iceworm revealed a pained smile. “Perhaps this wait will bring me agony for the rest of my life.”
The Ice Empress stared at him coldly and said, “Yes, it will give you pain for the rest of your life.”
She turned and floated towards Huo Yuhao as she spoke. The Skydream Iceworm felt his heart skip a beat as he hurriedly followed her.
The Snow Empress had lost her memory, and she only recognized Huo Yuhao. She immediately flew next to Huo Yuhao as she stared at the Ice Empress warily.
The Ice Empress smiled, staring at Huo Yuhao, and her smile was very happy.
“You are all wrong. I do want to absorb this Manifold Mysterious Ice Essence, and I have to admit that greedy thoughts did appear in my head when I saw it. I believe that is something that any ice-type soul beast cannot avoid. However, that avarice is insufficient to sway my faith.
“So what if I recreate my physical body? In Di Tian’s life, he has cultivated for more than eight hundred thousand years with the help of the Lake of Life, and even then, he doesn’t have a single chance of touching the God Realm. The God Realm has always been very harsh and strict towards us soul beasts. However, I have truly seen hope in Yuhao. The call from the God Realm and the formation of his soul core proves that my judgment wasn’t false all those years ago. Since that’s the case, why would I give up my roots to chase something so trivial?”
The Skydream Iceworm stared at her with widened eyes and slack jaw. “You… you’re not recreating your physical body anymore?”
The Ice Empress rolled her eyes and said, “When did I say that I wished to do that?”
The Skydream Iceworm stammered, “But… but you said that if something happens to him, you can choose another host!”
The Ice Empress replied, “I did say that! But I was just speaking casually. Why are you so serious? Do you think I don’t know how illusory recreating my physical body is? You are too tensed up. Yes, Yuhao did sustain enormous pressure coming in here, but that pressure was within my control. If I sensed that he had reached the limits of what he could bear, I would have immediately helped him relieve that pressure.”
The Ice Empress’ green light suddenly flourished as she spoke, and the Ice Jade Empress Scorpion’s original form glowed behind Huo Yuhao’s back. The chill that had been assaulting him from the beginning to the end, that had frozen him over instantly, disappeared as Huo Yuhao regained his senses.
“How can he improve without pressure? Did he not do the same to Qiuqiu? Don’t you know how difficult it is to give Yuhao pressure? This place is as suitable as it gets. This experience will be very beneficial for him when he absorbs the Manifold Mysterious Ice Essence later.
“However, I have to absorb at least half of the Manifold Mysterious Ice Essence here,” the Ice Empress was very serious, “I have never considered recreating my physical body, or to change hosts in the future. To be honest, I don’t think anybody can be better than Yuhao, and I was just commenting casually. However, such a thing is possible, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. As for why I have to absorb large amounts of Manifold Mysterious Ice Essence to consolidate and strengthen my origins, the reason is simple.”
“Why?” the Skydream Iceworm asked.
The Ice Empress rolled her eyes and said, “You’re such an idiot. You had nothing better to do, so you decided to help Yuhao form his soul core with only seven soul rings. This will allow his cultivation to increase more quickly, but have you considered that forming a second soul core is a challenge for an Ultimate Douluo? He’ll probably need more than thirty, or even fifty years.
“The Manifold Mysterious Ice Essence is your great luck. The amount that he can absorb is limited, while my absorption is equivalent to his martial soul absorbing more. All this will be unleashed when he breaks through in the future, and when he is forming his second soul core. I will infuse my origin power into his body so that he has a chance at success.”
The Skydream Iceworm’s jaws were still agape. “Very wise!”
The Ice Empress shot him a disdainful glance and said, “Of course I am wise, unlike you; you’re such an idiot. You hadn’t even clarified anything before you came running to express your loyalty. Please, continue!”
“I…” The Skydream Iceworm gave her a sheepish look. “I was wrong, Ice Empress. I have aggrieved you.”
The Ice Empress laughed coldly and said, “No! Do not speak of aggrievance. You’re so good to Yuhao, you guys are brothers. I am an outsider. Yuhao is the generous one… what about you? You are projecting your own despicable thoughts to judge honest people. Leave me alone next time.”
“I was wrong, Ice Empress. Isn’t it enough that I have apologized? I will do whatever you wish me to, my lady. I was wrong, I truly understand that I was wrong now.” The Skydream Iceworm finally understood what the Ice Empress meant about giving him pain for the rest of his life. He finally felt it deep in his bones.
Huo Yuhao turned toward the Ice Empress with a forced laugh. “This is all just a misunderstanding, jeez… I was also wrong. Everything is my fault. Don’t blame brother Skydream.”
The Skydream Iceworm secretly gave Huo Yuhao a thumbs-up.
The Ice Empress chortled and said, “It’s not so easy to toss us away, Yuhao. You will only have motivation when there’s pressure. It’s fine, I don’t blame you. I have always treated you like a younger brother. Furthermore, your speech just now was pretty touching. Quite unlike a certain crawling bug, heh!”
“I… I was wrong! Ice Empress,” the Skydream Iceworm hurriedly stepped forward to pull on the Ice Empress, but she shrugged him away.
“That’s enough, I’ll deal with you later. We have to discuss this matter with the Manifold Mysterious Ice Essence. You also have to absorb some, Skydream, not just me. The Snow Lady and the Star Anise have to do it, as well. The Snow Lady has to take more, and perhaps that will help her regain her strength. Yuhao can only absorb a little for now. The Manifold Mysterious Ice Essence is too effective, and if you absorb too much of it, you may very well end up in a deep slumber like the Skydream Iceworm all those years ago. If that happens, you may sleep for a good ten years. I’m sure you won’t want that."Previous Chapter Next Chapter