Somi went into the bathroom and gently shut the door behind her. As soon as she did, the entire area transformed into another realm altogether. The previously still towels and toothbrushes began to move as though they had a life of their own, while their shadows slowly converged towards the door to the bedroom.
Bzzt… The electric lights went out at the same time. Somi stood in front of the mirror. Her reflection in the mirror had already begun to distort, almost as though the other end of the mirror was a portal that led straight into a bottomless abyss.
It started out small and dainty, but her smile soon grew wider and wider, until the sides of her lips suddenly parted and split open until she was practically smiling from ear to ear, revealing a series of razor-sharp teeth from within! Her scarlet tongue lashed out like a vicious snake and began writing a few words on the surface of the mirror.
The surface of the mirror appeared no different from still waters that rippled to her touch. Slowly, but surely, she plunged her head deeper and deeper through the surface of the mirror, almost as though she were being drawn in by the mirror itself. Her hands were propped up against the frame of the mirror, revealing countless horrific spots of livor mortis on the surface of her skin. These spots emanated a rancid smell. In fact, there were even countless maggots squirming about underneath her decomposing skin. Copious amounts of Yin energy poured out of the pores of her body.
Her neck grew longer and longer, as though it were without end. But after only a few seconds, she suddenly let out a muffled grunt and retracted her head.
“Damn that cautious old hag…” She pulled her head out of the mirror, only to reveal a slight scorched mark on her forehead. She gritted her teeth in chagrin and retracted all sources of Yin energy pouring out from her body. At once, she transformed right back into the image of a pure high school student that was innocently staring at her own reflection in the mirror.
A moment later, she transformed into the appearance of a man.
This man looked thin and frail. He wore the black robes of a pastor, and even hung a cross around his chest. There was a calm and affectionate gaze in his eyes. In some ways, there was an uncanny semblance between his appearance and that of Ahn Somi.
That was the name of her nominal father.
“Who would’ve thought that you’d actually return to life?” She stared at her reflection in the mirror with a soft sigh, “To think you were able to return in one piece despite having departed under the escort of both Crow Tengu and Black Yaksha… Should I be congratulating you for your achievements?”
“What’s the matter?” Ahn Jun-ho didn’t find anything amiss. People like Lee Jung-sook would never disclose the darkest secrets of her lives to outsiders. There was no chance that any outsider could possibly impersonate her.
Naturally, she hadn’t considered the possibility of a ballsy man playing dress up before her right now.
Lee Jung-sook didn’t say a word.
“Are you thinking of asking me for assistance to help rid you of the Crow Tengu and Black Yaksha following you?” Ahn Jun-ho smiled faintly, “It’s too late… Their father is the renowned Susanoo, father of over eight million kunitsukami, or the gods of the land. Their true form is that of the Susa Boy. Unfortunately, the Hanyang Underworld isn’t strong enough to keep them in check.”
Lee Jung-sook remained silent, but her body trembled a little bit.
Qin Ye’s acting skills were on point. ‘Lee Jung-sook’ placed her hands around her arms with a slightly defensive posture, almost as though the fear in her heart were causing her to feel cold and exposed.
On the other hand, Somi couldn’t help but be overjoyed by her expression of fear.
“Why did you refuse the proposal of Lord Rumyantsev, the king of the Danube? He’d even informed you that the Tsar is personally involved and invested in the Hanyang Underworld. He’s the only one who can save you from your ordeals. Sure, you might not die, but that doesn’t mean you’re impervious to all pain.”
“Who would’ve thought that you would actually refuse such a gracious offer from the Tsar? Sigh… Do you know that back then, when I presided over your baptism, you were a lot smarter than you are right now.” Ahn Jun-ho continued softly, “Four years ago, when the Tsar first approved the operations codenamed ‘Nameless Sacrifice’, he approached you directly, offering to make you, a living human being, the queen of all ghosts. You’d have been appointed the living spokesperson of the Hanyang Underworld, and become the right-hand lady answering to no one but Lord Liu Yu. But… you refused. Now, in the final steps of his plans known as the ‘Terminus of Terror’, you’ve rejected the Tsar’s emissaries once again. Lee Jung-sook…”
“Who do you think you are?”
“Sure, you might have lived for close to 700 years, but that doesn’t change the fact that you’re just a mere mortal.”
Ahn Jun-ho spoke in fluent Cathayan. Yet, it was only after he said all that he did that he slowly began to find something slightly amiss with Lee Jung-sook tonight.
She paused for a moment, and then stared intently at the hazy image in the mirror, “Hey… look up at me… and sweep your hair to the side.”
The hair in the mirror appeared absolutely disheveled, and it concealed Lee Jung-sook’s facial features altogether.
Still no response!
Suddenly, Somi’s heart was filled with an ominous feeling, almost as though she were traipsing through the forest, only to discover that she had just been targeted by a giant beast!
It felt as though there were a ferocious predator lurking in the shadows, waiting to pounce on its prey.
Sure, she could be likened to a powerful Yin spirit having charge over city level affairs, but the predator lurking in the shadows was a Yin spirit in charge of national affairs! It was the lord of over a billion Yin spirits! It was the monarch of the dead!
The pressure was absolutely crushing!
This isn’t Lee Jung-sook!
Her heart skipped a beat. At once, her head jerked back, and she leaned heavily against the walls behind her - That’s right… How could I not have noticed her large frame? There’s no way a lady could possibly have shoulders as broad as hers? Damn it! I’ve been had!
She promptly sought to wrap up the seance. At once, she mustered her Yin energy and channeled everything she had in order to get a better glimpse of the other party’s appearances as she barked through gritted teeth, “Who the hell are you?!!”
A moment later, the voice that responded caused her to go completely flabbergasted.
It was obviously a man’s voice.
But it was incredibly shrill and awkward.
“I am… Luo Tianyi.” 
Luo my ass!!!!
Somi nearly cursed under her breath - Are you trying to mess with me?!
“Hey, unnie, why does it feel as though you’re desperately trying to shut the door on me? What’s the hurry? The night is still young…”
Damn it… he’s… an Infernal Judge!!!
Her fingers twitched for a moment, and then she began to make a series of rapid hand seals. Cold sweat percolated her forehead.
She could tell that the quality of Yin energy emanating from the other side of the mirror was even more terrifying than that which was at Lord Rumyantsev’s disposal! To make matters worse, her moment of complacency had allowed the Infernal Judge on the other side to jam the portal with his true energy, causing her to be unable to close off all connections at once!
Sure, it might only take another minute or two, but even that might be potentially fatal given their difference in abilities!
One of the last things she’d expected was the fact that the Infernal Judge on the other side was in fact a man!
“What are you trying to do?” Somi asked as she desperately sought to buy time to close the channel of connection. Meanwhile, she spat out a talisman that promptly combusted in mid-air. Then, she bit down tightly on her lips and stared intently at the mirror, “I’m the chief liaison officer under the charge of Lord Peter the Great! Where do you come from? The quality of your Yin energy tells me that you can’t possibly be a nobody! Which faction or power do you represent? How dare you meddle in the affairs of the Tsar of Rus? You’d best brace yourself, because you might not be able to handle the recoil that might snap right back at you!”
As she spoke, the surroundings suddenly went silent.
It was a bizarre sensation. It was as though the entire world had been muted. In fact, she was almost certain that even if she continued speaking, there would be no sound at all.
In that instant, she felt as though she’d just been isolated from the world.
Somi gasped and retreated from the mirror as she stared at it in shock.
She understood. She finally understood it all.
The Infernal Judge had been able to close the channel of communication at all times, but had clearly elected not to do so because, just as she was locating the Infernal Judge, the Infernal Judge was likewise also locating her.
If you gaze deep into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you.
Unfortunately, the Infernal Judge was quicker than she was.
A split second later, the surface of the mirror rippled and distorted, and a majestic, all-encompassing pressure erupted from within! For a moment, Somi thought that her eyes were playing tricks on her. She saw countless wailing ghosts screaming and wailing in the mirror, before promptly transforming into an underworld that was orders of magnitudes larger than the Hanyang Underworld!
Is this… one of the four major underworlds in the netherworld?!
Is one of the four major underworlds actually interfering with Hanyang’s affairs?!
Somi’s heart practically stopped altogether.
A multitude of thoughts ran through her mind in that single instant. She knew full well that the Daehan Peninsula was situated in an important location. It was the gateway to both Eastern Rus, and West Nippon. It used to be a fiefdom of the Cathayan underworld, but after a hundred years of absence from the international arena… it would seem as though there were many who had their eyes on these important lands. But who exactly is it?
Unfortunately, she wasn’t given the luxury of time to delve any deeper into these thoughts. With a soft buzz, the mirror in front of her eyes cracked apart, revealing a scarlet eye that stared directly at her with a deadly gaze. At once, a young man’s voice broke the silence.
“Ahh… Found you…”
Whoosh! Ahn Jun-ho’s appearances vanished, revealing Ahn Somi’s true form. A frigid sensation washed over Somi and she squealed as she transformed into a black shadow and ran straight out of the windows. She didn’t dare remain in this place any longer!
The difference between their abilities was far too great. The sheer pressure bearing down on her already made it feel as though she were trying to hold up the heavens.
But just as she was about to head out the windows, the eye in the mirror suddenly vanished, only to be replaced by a huge black hand formed out of Yin energy and glistening with the glow of a silvery talisman. To her great surprise, the ostensibly material hand rushed right out of the mirror like a bolt of lightning and made a grab at Somi!
“My Lord, save me!!!” Somi screamed at the top of her voice.
Just then, the shadows in the surroundings suddenly converged like a tsunami, forming a hazy, ghastly shadow that promptly struck out and parried Qin Ye’s attempt at capturing Somi.
A visible shockwave erupted from the epicentre of contact. The hazy, ghostly shadow dissipated at once with a muffled grunt. But, at the same time, the crack in the mirror finally closed up altogether.
“Haa…” Somi finally stopped and transformed back into the form of a high school girl as she ran out of the school, gasping for breath as she paused underneath a lamp post right outside the school gates.
“This is terrible…” She leaned against the lamp post and huffed anxiously, “I have to report this to Lord Liu immediately… One of the four major underworlds in the netherworld is currently eyeing Hanyang…”
Daelim One Apartments, Building 6B, 25th floor.
Qin Ye slowly retracted his hand from the mirror on the dresser.
It was slightly red.
“That was an Infernal Judge… presumably one from the Russian Underworld at that. That said, this was clearly only a fragment of its soul, which means that its main body is likely an Abyssal Prefect. This makes sense. After all, the Hanyang Underworld has only one Infernal Judge, and that’s none other than Liu Yu himself.” Qin Ye got up and subconsciously combed his hair as he mulled over these thoughts, “I can now be certain of one thing - the strongest emissaries that I’ll have to deal with aren’t the emissaries of the Hanyang Underworld, but those who represent the nameless god of death of the Orthodox Church…”
The makeup and accessories box was already lying open in front of him, and he continued to pick out an eyebrow pencil to shade his brows masterfully, “Fortunately, I’ve learnt a lot from the other side this time. ‘Nameless Sacrifice’ and ‘Terminus of Terror’... What are these? Are they some form of steps or rituals that are necessary for fabricating miracles?”
“Furthermore, I can tell that Lee Jung-sook has been in contact with them. I can understand why both Rus and Liu Yu value her so much. After all, her power, status and influence opens up a world of possibilities for them. Who would’ve thought that Lee Jung-sook would actually turn out to be a major key in their operations? Unfortunately, they can no longer rely on her, because she’s lost her memory. Given the nature of such discussions, I’m not sure she would have etched these memories onto her skin for the purposes of her next life. I suppose how much I can achieve will all boil down to when I can locate her. I’ve only got a month and a half after all…”
His hands finally stopped. At some point in time, he’d already picked up the lipstick and carefully traced it around his lips three times.
What the hell am I doing?!
Qin Ye was completely creeped out by his subconscious mind. At once, he tossed down the lipsticks, pulled up his skirt and rushed right back out of the room.
Kim Tae-ji was also startled by Qin Ye’s appearances.
“You--...” She stared at the ‘young lady’ in front of her with a complex gaze in her eyes.
Bloody hell… How is it possible that you’re even more good-looking than I was in my prime?! Someone, hand me a bottle of acid right now!
Kiddo, I’m surprised you don’t have a boyfriend just yet. You’re practically bending the boundaries of all norms right now…
Qin Ye set down his skirt and once and transformed his appearances into the likeness of a young lady with his Yin energy, “Do you know her... cough, cough…”
After clearing his voice, he forcibly spoke with the voice of a young man, “Do you know who this lady is? If not, I’d like you to locate her at once. I want answers within a day.”
He didn’t expect any response from Kim Tae-ji right away. Unexpectedly, she stared at his face for three seconds, and immediately responded with surprise, “Of course I know her…”
“Isn’t she… Ahn Jun-ho’s daughter… Ahn Somi? She’s a student of Saint Virtue High School.”
1. Luo Tianyi is the name of a virtual singer built from voice synthesizing technology called Vocaloid. It is also the first Vocaloid Chinese singer. https://vocaloid.fandom.com/wiki/Luo_Tianyi