Jikong Wudi told the venerable: “No matter what happens or what we have to pay, we have to eliminate Li Qiye.”
This decision had been cemented in his mind. He would pay any price to destroy Li Qiye.
The war for the throne had always been merciless. Even though many of these past competitions were between Emperor Candidates and people said that only those who dared to face their most powerful enemies and overcome them would become emperor, this was not always the case. In fact, for millions of years, there had always been conspiracies and schemes beneath the surface of these wards. Behind these candidates were an abundance of followers and mighty dao protectors.
A lot of brilliant geniuses died pitifully to schemes, ambushes, and assassinations. Only by surviving this cruel war would one become the Immortal Emperor.
More often than not, these despicable means were looked down upon. However, Jikong Wudi couldn’t care less about it at this point. In his eyes, after he becomes the Immortal Emperor, the public would stop caring about it later on! Who would actually dare to bring it up at that point?
“Li Qiye… I really can’t see through you, just how powerful are you, really?” After hearing this news, Lin commented while hellishly training with Zhan Shi.
“Very, beyond our imagination.” Zhan Shi spoke.
Zhan Shi had entered the Heavenly Dao Academy before. Back then, he was a student of the Sacred Era Hall. Although he was not friends with Li Qiye then, he knew full well of his deeds.
Lin movingly spoke: “I think my senior brother will meet a powerful opponent in this generation. If he isn’t careful, I’m afraid he will have to run after suffering defeat.”
“It seems like Brother Lin is very open-minded.” Zhan Shi told Lin.
“We are having a heart-to-heart talk, there’s no need to hide anything.” Lin said: “Brother Zhan, you know my background. Just like you said, I don’t mind letting everything go even at this point, it’s not worth mentioning at all.”
Zhan Shi looked at the young man and spoke: “Brother Lin is willing to give up the battle for the Heaven’s Will just like that? Immortal Emperor is something everyone will want as long as they have some ambition in them.”
“The truth is that I have never thought about competing for the Heaven’s Will or becoming the emperor. This opportunity is not being prepared for me, it is meant for my senior brother.” Lin smilingly said.
“I am not someone who underestimates myself and I see that you are the same way.” Zhan Shi said: “No matter how powerful your senior brother might be, in my opinion, Brother Lin still has a chance to compete.”
“No, there is a big gap between us.” Lin gently shook his head: “At the very least, right now, I have no way of surpassing him.”
Zhan Shi disagreed by shaking his head: “I don’t think so. More often than not, the dao heart is more important than talents when it comes to becoming an emperor. Of course, talents are indispensable, but the dao heart is even more crucial. Without a firm dao heart, even the most brilliant talents would only be for show. For ages now, countless great geniuses with weak dao hearts couldn’t handle defeat and eventually succumbed to their own inner demon.”
“Only by courageously treading forward without caring for trials and hardship would one be able to become the emperor.” Zhan Shi’s eyes turned profound as his determination became even more resolute.
He looked at Lin and said: “In terms of talents, skills, and dao heart, Brother Lin does not lack any of these. You meet the conditions and have the qualifications to compete for the Heaven’s Will.”
“The sect chose my senior brother, not me.” Lin shook his head: “I will not be the one standing in my sect and my senior brother’s way.”
Zhan Shi did not agree: “In my opinion, Brother Lin is not a person who is overly adherent to old ideas, so why do you have such thoughts? Your fate should be up to you alone!”
“I am already very satisfied.” Lin smiled: “Everything I have today was given to me by my sect. If it values my senior brother, I will let him pass and hope that he will not let us down by becoming the emperor.”
Zhan Shi went on: “If you no longer want to become the emperor, why do you still want to fight Li Qiye? You should quit this game, this path paved with cruelty.”
“This is my attempt to lend the sect a hand by exploring Li Qiye’s true worth so that my senior brother can have a better chance.” Lin smiled: “Plus, running without fighting isn’t my style! I want to have a real battle against Li Qiye, not losing after one or two moves! I can’t accept such a defeat!”
“I can’t accept it either.” Zhan Shi didn’t wish to dwell on this matter and smiled back: “Who can accept losing to Li Qiye right away without even knowing what happened! No matter what, we have to see what he is really about! Even if we lose, we have to understand the process at the very least!”
“That’s right, let us work together and give him a good fight.” Lin laughed out loud in a gallant manner.
Zhan Shi laughed loudly as well: “If we can defeat Li Qiye, then let the two of us compete for the Heaven’s Will in the future!”
“If such a day will come, then I shall compete as well.” Lin accepted happily the idea. These words were erring on the playful side.
“If that day comes, Brother Lin, remember that I won’t take it easy on you.” Zhan Shi solemnly said with a firm glare.
Lin laughed heartily in response: “Don’t worry, Brother Zhan, I won’t show mercy either. We will fight until the sky collapses!”
Despite his heroic demeanor, Lin gently sighed inside. He knew that that day wouldn’t come. It didn’t matter whether they could defeat Li Qiye or not, he would concede to his senior brother in the future. The sect had given his senior brother everything, so he couldn’t cause trouble for them by standing in his brother’s way.
After all, his senior brother was the chosen one. He couldn’t act so ungrateful towards the sect!
Li Qiye and the girls entered the Dark Maxim Palace and continued along the road. Many palaces appeared in their sight.
From the outside, the Dark Maxim Palace seemed to be just one palace, but this was not the case. It was a heavenly grotto with many different palaces inside.
Li Shuangyan and the others felt a suppressive aura. It seemed to be emanating from the palace itself and a different location at the same time.
Eventually, the group came before a huge palace. After entering, the colorful glimmers of treasures were reflected everywhere.
Many different items were displayed inside, ranging from divine metals to immortal steel. Weapons and holy artifacts of all kinds were placed along the palace walls. The shelves collected rare boxes as well.
Outsiders would be driven insane by seeing this. This many treasures could plunge the world into a bloodbath from greed.
Fortunately, Li Shuangyan and the girls were experienced. She and Chen Baojiao had been following Li Qiye, so they were no strangers to treasures. Needless to say about Mei Suyao, she came from the Eternal River School, a lineage with three emperors. It was a place that never lacked treasures.
Bai Jianzhen’s Sword God Sacred Ground was also an imperial lineage, so they had plenty of treasures as well.
“Pick your favorite.” Li Qiye smiled: “Remember, each person can only take one item out of the palace, no more.”
After hearing Li Qiye, the girls didn’t rush for the treasures. They only carefully looked over everything on display.
“This is the Devil Lord’s collection. Although the best ones have been taken away by him, there are still many incredible items in here. It is up to you guys to pick the most suitable treasure for yourselves.”
The girls took their time. At this point, their harvest depended on their own luck.
After giving the hint, Li Qiye left for another big palace.
There was nothing else besides a huge painting hanging in the main hall of this palace. It was neither a drawing of a devil king engulfed in evil energy nor the Devil Lord of legends. It was a painting of a monk, or rather, a Buddha.
The Buddhist aura coming from this painting was far-reaching and had a great rhythm. Regardless of how many years had passed, it still emitted a faint Buddhist light. One couldn’t see this Buddha’s face since he was turning his back on all existences while walking to a very, very distant destination.
While looking at the painting, one would think that this Buddha was slowly disappearing before their eyes towards the horizon. But time and time again, he didn’t disappear completely as if his journey was especially long and arduous. It was a never-ending trek across millions of years.
“Was this not drawn?” While Li Qiye was quietly admiring this painting, a gentle voice came about.
It was Mei Suyao. She had already picked a treasure for herself. She stood next to Li Qiye and looked at the painting as well. With a natural immortal bone, she had a unique perspective both when picking her treasure as well as looking at this painting.
“Right, it wasn’t painted.” Li Qiye smiled and nodded his head.
“A Buddha has imprinted himself in this place.” Her immortal bone could see through the origin. After a careful look, she was startled: “He left his will in this place, is this his attempt of suppressing the Devil World?”
“You can put it that way, but it is not to the point of suppressing. To be more exact, he is trying to stabilize the Lesser Imperial Devil World.” Li Qiye explained while looking at the painting.
“Is this the legendary master of the Buddhist Kingdom?” Mei Suyao had to ask.