Qin Ye immediately surveyed his surroundings, only to discover that even though there were waiters outside, he couldn’t detect a single Yin spirit around at all!
This was his first reaction.
Only a Yama-class Yin spirit could conceal its presence from me. But here in Daehan… so long as the Harken is sleeping, and the Second King Yanluo isn’t bored out of his mind… there’s simply no way someone of that caliber could be here! Tsar Arturo wouldn’t come over for no reason, and Yamaraja from the Hindustani Underworld is unlikely to travel all the way down here just to ruffle the tiger’s fur.
It doesn’t make any sense! What in the world is going on here?
Qin Ye retracted his gaze. Just then, he suddenly paused.
It was because he saw a line of words written on the table - “Midnight tonight, 99 Chestnut Valley Road, Jongno District.”
This statement didn’t mean much, but Qin Ye immediately knew who the one who had left the message was.
It’s actually him! Qin Ye hammered the table in joy and laughed uproariously.
The manager of La Yeon immediately rushed in and bowed respectfully once more, “Sir, do you have any further instructions?”
However, Qin Ye simply shook his head and laughed heartily as he left the restaurant.
As soon as he stepped out of the hotel, he immediately glanced at the streets with a gaze of anticipation.
Hanyang had never felt as lovely as this before. Even the air suddenly became fresh to his nose.
He’d almost forgotten the fact that Hell had sent out several agents into foreign lands to learn widely. These people were likely all eagerly anticipating the day that they could return to their homeland!
Cathay’s borders had been sealed off completely, and Yin spirits were no longer able to enter or leave freely. That said… he was a man who straddled both the mortal realm and the nether world! He’s both dead and alive at the same time!
If Lee Jung-sook could sneak Crow Tengu and Black Yaksha through the Array of the Nine Gods, there’s no reason why he couldn’t do the same thing!
“The thing that Hell lacks most right now is manpower - especially talents! The return of these elites would most certainly help tremendously in Hell’s development. They would be more familiar with the previous polity, science and technology, and… if I’m lucky enough, there may even be Yin talismanology experts hidden within! Perhaps Waiter Zu might even be one! And if that’s the case…”
His thoughts immediately began to spin out of control once more.
If that’s truly the case… then we might just be on the cusp of Fengdu’s revival, and that naturally means… the rebirth of Immortal Sanction!
If not for the efforts of our forefathers, would Cathay have the threat of nuclear weapons? And if Cathay didn’t have the threat of nuclear weapons, how could it possibly have been designated as one of the Permanent Five or the P5 of the United Nations?
The position of P5 wasn’t based on the size of one’s territory. It was based solely upon strength!
Smack! Qin Ye slapped his own face and forced himself to calm down. Then, he slowly began to analyze the things that were to be done in Hell moving forward. Admittedly, there was still much to be done. In fact, he wasn’t even close to embarking on crucial projects such as the re-establishment of the six paths of reincarnation, or the construction of the Eighteen Abysses of Punishment. Naturally, Hell was still nothing more than a fragment of its former glory.
Time was ticking down slowly but surely. If they weren’t able to get their nuclear weapons up and running by the time the Array of the Nine Gods dissipates, then needless to say, it wouldn’t take long before the other underworlds came knocking at his front door.
“Damn, I can’t wait for the upcoming meeting tonight…” He shook his head and returned to the front of his hotel where he was staying the night, only to discover Wang Chenghao and the others already waiting for him at the entrance. They stood right in front of a long limousine that drew much attention from various passers-by.
“What’s this?” Qin Ye asked in bewilderment.
“Greetings, Mr Qin.” Just then, the driver bowed respectfully and smiled courteously, “I’m here under Miss Lee’s instructions. Since you’ve gone out of your way to come to the little country of Daehan, please allow Miss Lee to do her part as a good host to you.”
Qin Ye naturally obliged.
He hadn’t had a moment of rest ever since entering Daehan. That said, he firmly believed that one should fully enjoy himself when it was time to relax.
After all, he was keenly aware that human beings couldn’t function like machines. If they remain fully wound up all the time, it would only be a matter of time before they finally break down.
Even though they were already mentally prepared to be showered with decent hospitality, nothing could possibly prepare them for what Lee Jung-sook had arranged for them. Even the prodigal son of the richest family of Clear Creek County was rendered speechless at the sight.
They were ferried straight to a private resort that was presumably one of Lee Jung-sook’s holiday homes. The interior was entirely furnished like lavish buildings in the Cathayan countryside. There were villas and water pavilions within, as well as adornments of golden chrysanthemum everywhere. It exuded the feel of a Cathayan water town, while the buildings largely sported black tiles and white walls. A traipse through the hallways would send one straight back through the history books into the Han and Tang Dynasty eras.
There were even beautiful sculptures tastefully placed at every corner of the resort. Moreover, each room had its own separate courtyard with its own private hot spring to boot!
The fact that she owns such a massive plot of land in the heart of Hanyang speaks volumes of the sheer extent of her wealth…
“Please make yourselves at home. Oh, and if you crave anything, please let us know through the phones located in every room. Just say the word, and we’ll do our best to make it happen.” The driver bowed courteously and motioned to take his leave. Just then, Qin Ye suddenly raised his brows quizzically and asked, “Hang on, could I know what kind of place 99 Chestnut Valley Road of Jongno District is like?”
“It’s not too far from this place. That’s where Changdeokgung is located, otherwise known as Changdeok Palace.  The rear garden is particularly famous, and it represents the epitome of all Daehan courtyards. In fact, it is so well known that it made it to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1997. Would you like to make a trip there, sir? Ah, I’ve forgotten to mention that there’s a 24-hour on-call driver who will attend to your needs wherever you may wish to go, regardless of time.”
I really don’t want to imagine how these filthy rich people have been living all this while… Qin Ye fervently suppressed his disdain for the wealthy - Bloody hell… How can a mere queen of Daehan be living more comfortably than the King Yanluo of Hell? Everything’s gone awry!
As the driver left, Qin Ye immediately nodded towards Wang Chenghao and Oda Nobutada with eagerness, “I’d like you to accompany me somewhere tonight.”
“No problem.” Wang Chenghao paused for a moment, and then revealed a knowing expression on his face, “You know, Brother Qin, I’d actually thought that Nobutada and I were going to have to do it without you.”
Qin Ye glanced back at them in surprise, “Hang on… How did you know about it? Even I have only just learned about something like this. Could they have… already informed you beforehand?”
Wang Chenghao also stared back at Qin Ye in bewilderment, “Hang on a minute… why do you need to make any arrangements? Can’t we just go there and look for them? Could it be that…”
He stared intently at Qin Ye, “Brother Qin has a specific plan of attack?! As expected! That’s the Brother Qin I know!”
Qin Ye’s expressions stiffened, “So, where are we going?”
“Cheongnyangni! ” Wang Chenghao exclaimed, beaming with excitement, “That’s where most of the massage parlors in Hanyang are located! Can you call yourself a man if you don’t sow some of your seeds here in a foreign land?”
Qin Ye glared at Wang Chenghao. Rage instantly surge in his heart, and bile spewed from his lips, “What an immature proposition…”
Wang Chenghao immediately leaned in closer with keen interest, “What if I tell you that… I’ve got an even better plan than that?”
Stay calm… stay calm… What’s the point of getting mad at a silly prodigal son… Qin Ye took several deep breaths, and then turned to Oda Nobutada, “Hey Nobutada, help me out here. Just make sure he stays alive.”
“Ah!! No! What are you doing! I’ve only asked for--... Hey, n-not the face! That’s the most valuable part of my body!”
Hanyang was once again brightly lit with neon lights. The Changdeok Palace was already closed to the public by now. That said, the streets were still bustling with traffic, and youngsters would pass by from time to time, decked out in the latest fashion trends.
“Why does it seem a little bit cold tonight?” A woman wearing beautiful makeup walked past the Changdeok Palace and peeked into it with surprise. Apart from the street lights, not a single soul could be seen.
“Misook unnie, what’s wrong?” Her friend asked curiously.
Misook shook her head dismissively. She could’ve sworn that she felt a gaze on her body earlier. It was a palpable, frigid sensation. And yet, when she took a closer look, she saw nothing at all.
Naturally, they couldn’t see that there were currently six old men standing right at the entrance of Changdeok Palace, dressed in their black official garments, pacing about anxiously as though they were waiting for something or someone. None of the passers-by could see them at all. The Changdeok Palace was located right behind them, brightly lit with scarlet lanterns swaying gently about. Meanwhile, the entire courtyard was filled with spots of netherflames that were invisible to the eyes of mortals.
“Are you sure the message was delivered?” One of the old men suddenly stopped pacing about and turned back in dismay, “It’s already 12.05 a.m! Why isn’t he here yet?!”
“Fellow Daoist Zhao, don’t be impatient.” Another old man beside him responded placidly, “It’s only been five minutes.”
Even then, the old man who had just spoken couldn’t stop the tremors of excitement in his hands.
After all, it’s been a hundred years since they’ve last been home. How was the country doing?
Nobody knew just how terrified and anxious they were when they suddenly lost contact with Fengdu Necropolis. Admittedly, they could easily have pledged their allegiance to a foreign underworld if they had wanted to, but nobody had ever spoken about it. Ever.
In fact, they hadn’t even mentioned to others that they were unable to contact Fengdu Necropolis. They had even maintained the cover story that they were still in contact with Hell from time to time all this while.
Unfortunately, without Hell’s direction, they were like drifting flotsam on the vast rivers… at least until their roots found their anchor once more!
“It’s already 10 minutes past midnight.” Another old man chimed in, “Mr Zu, are you sure you’d successfully passed the message on to him?”
“Are you suggesting that I’ve lost my edge?” Mr Zu, formerly known as Waiter Zu, glanced back at the streets anxiously, “It’s the Abyssal Prefect that we’ve never met before! It should be the one who recently attained a breakthrough back in Gyeonggi Province just a few days ago--... He’s here!”
As he spoke, a powerful stream of nethergale swept through the entrance of Changdeok Palace. At once, two golden spots of netherflames appeared amidst the swirling Yin energy, and a scarlet robe fluttered majestically in the wind. The familiar designs of the xiezhi unicorn, the Harken and the Eighteen Abysses of Punishment unravelled right in front of their very eyes. At once, every single one of the old men felt a lump swell up in their throats, and their minds went numb. All of them collapsed to their knees at once.
They wanted to speak.
There was so much that they had to say.
They wanted to ask about what happened to Fengdu Necropolis.
They wanted to tell the Emissary of Hell just how much they’d been through all this while, and how they’ve floundered about just to get by.
But in that instant, the only words that emerged from their lips were, “My Lord… You’ve come.”
At once, an old man choked up and pounded heavily on the ground, “We’ve… been waiting for a hundred years for this moment!”
“Etiquette!” The leader of the group glanced back and hissed at the old man, before drawing a deep breath and kowtowing to the Emissary of Hell, “Shang Yang, president of the Imperial Court of Judicial Review, humbly greets Your Excellency!”
“Li Chun, Chief Engineer of the Ministry of State Construction, humbly greets Your Excellency!” “Lu Ban, Chief Engineer of the Ministry of State Construction, humbly greets Your Excellency!”
“Wu Daozi, President of the Yellow Emperor Academy, humbly greets Your Excellency!” “Zhang Zhongjing, Vice President of the Yellow Emperor Academy, humbly greets Your Excellency!” “Zhang Heng, Director of the Geography Department, humbly greets Your Excellency!”
Qin Ye gasped and sighed softly in his heart.
It wasn’t just one… Who would’ve thought that there would be multiple people here?
Shang Yang, Wu Daozi, Zhang Heng, Zhang Zhongjing, Lu Ban, Li Chun… Their expertise covered medicine, geology, engineering, art and arithmetic, a grand total of five major disciplines! This was a great surprise, even for Qin Ye who had come eagerly anticipating a windfall. At once, his heart leapt with joy.
“Everyone, let’s spare the formalities.” Qin Ye hurriedly walked forward and greeted them warmly, “Please, get up, get up.”
He helped everyone up and then immediately exclaimed with profound resignation, “Everyone, it’s been hard on you this last hundred years. But… it’s finally time to go home. I sincerely apologize for the tardiness.”
“No harm done.” Lu Ban was an old man with strong, chiseled features. He wiped off the imaginary tears in his eyes as he went on, “My Lord… How should we address you?”
Qin Ye smiled, “Third King Yanluo of Hell, Qin Ye. The Second King Yanluo has stepped down, and he’s still in the new Hell.”
Everyone’s sadness immediately vanished without a trace, and they all stared intently at Qin Ye in horror. None even bothered concealing the shock in their hearts.
After all, Qin Ye’s introduction completely blew them away.
Third King Yanluo of Hell?
Right in front of us?
And there’s even been a change of regime, and a new Hell to boot?
What the hell is going on?!
Are we even… going to go to the right home?
2. This is their red light district. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheongnyangni_588