“You’ve made up your mind?” Li Qiye asked with a smile.
“Your Majesty, I’m too useless to contribute even by staying, please grant me permission.” Jiadi said, clearly having made up his mind.
Li Qiye eventually nodded: “Very well, I won’t force you to stay if you wish to leave. You may stay wherever you please for your retirement.”
“Thank you, Your Majesty.” Jiadi raised up and bowed exactly three times in a solemn manner.
“Go now, you may also take any treasure you fancy in the palace.” Li Qiye waved his sleeve while looking at the guy.
“Your Majesty, I am moved to tears because of your magnanimity. I won’t need anything else.” Jiadi respectfully said.
“Very well, as you please.” Li Qiye nodded, accepting his wishes.
“Take care, Your Majesty.” Jiadi bowed once more before leaving.
In theory, Jiadi should be sticking around. After all, he has proved his absolute loyalty and now, the king had total authority. If Jiadi were to stay, he would rise in ranks without any opposition. Alas, he chose to retire instead.
Given up this good opportunity was quite unbelievable. However, Li Qiye wasn’t caught off guard and didn’t try to convince the old man otherwise.
“Take care.” Li Qiye nodded and said.
Jiadi’s lips slightly twitched from hesitation as if he wanted to say something but didn’t know how to put it.
“Your Majesty, I saw Silver Secret Legion during my departure. They were guarding right outside the system, but I don’t know if they’re still there.” He finally decided to speak.
Li Qiye smiled and said: “Silver Secret Legion, huh? I almost forgot since it’s so long ago. That’s fine, Silver or Gold Secret, whatever, can’t reach the apex.”
Jiadi’s response was stuck in his throat. All he could say was: “Please be careful, Your Majesty. Your safety relates to the well-being and prosperity of the entire system.”
“You sound like you know something.” Li Qiye wasn’t afraid at all on his throne.
Jiadi fell into silence and couldn’t reply. Like Li Qiye had said, he was a loyal man.
“Your Majesty, just please, be on guard. Sometimes we can be caught off guard by people who shouldn’t exist. Turn around and suddenly, there’s a dead man standing behind you.”
“I’m aware, I won’t make it difficult for you, just go.” Li Qiye nodded.
“Take care.” Jiadi sighed because he couldn’t get involved. Revealing this was the best he could do because of his loyalty.
Li Qiye stared outside after he left with a faint smile on his face.
While Li Qiye was back at the imperial city, another event was happening in a different spot in Imperial Lineage - the Mu Clan, one of the three behemoths.
In a heavily guarded location, a very powerful ancestor from the Mu greeted an unexpected guest.
“I was curious about why the birds were chirping so early this morning. So it’s Brother Sun, which wind brings you here to my place? What a surprise.” The ancestor happily smiled after seeing the guest.
“Brother Mu, you’re too polite.” The guest was a retiree from Nine Secrets, Sun Lengying.
He still wore the same gray outfit, looking just like a shadow.
“Our condolences for Lucidity King’s passing.” The ancestor said: “Although our two houses were at odds, Lucidity King was still a peerless talent worthy of respect. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, I couldn’t personally come to Nine Secrets and offer my respect.”
“His Majesty in the Yellow River will appreciate your kind words.” Lengyung was as cold as always. His expression and thoughts were impossible to read.
“After hearing about his death, I thought he would pass the throne to you because you have followed him for three generations with numerous contributions. Plus, you’re the only one who can handle the responsibility. Who would have thought he would pass it to an unknown junior? What a shame and such unfairness towards you. Lucidity King made a mistake.” The ancestor criticized.
“Thank you, Brother Sun, but let’s not talk about the past. I am here today to ask you for help.” Lengying showed no emotion.
“You are one of the top Eternals in the present day, you make me feel inadequate in comparison.” The ancestor smiled: “Not to mention you are in charge of Silver Secret, more than enough to sweep through the world and always be victorious. An old man like me can’t offer much help.”
“Don’t be so quick to refuse, Brother Mu, I won’t ask you to help for nothing. Plus, the Mu wouldn’t help an outsider for no reason anyway, right?” Lengying said directly.
“I’m sure whatever you have in mind is amazing, but certainly not easy either, so if you can’t do yourself, we won’t be that helpful either.” The ancestor said.
“Is that so? Brother Mu, are you not interested even when all of Nine Secrets are up for the taking?” Lengying stared at him and asked.
“You’re joking, Brother Sun.” The ancestor smiled: “Though I haven’t been outside, I’ve heard that Silver Secret has sealed the external pathways, rendering it virtually impossible for outsiders to come in.”
“Am I not here right now before you as a guest?” Lengying said.
“That’s an interesting comment, but I know you are completely loyal to Lucidity King. No one would question this, so I have a hard time believing that you would have any ideas towards Nine Secrets.”
“I am indeed loyal to His Majesty.” Lengying said: “However, he has passed away so there is nothing worth remembering in the system. I know that you wouldn’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. If you can topple Nine Secrets, your name will go down in the historical annals as well as your clan’s text along with the old sages of the Mu.”
“That is indeed tempting, but I’m afraid I will still have no say no.” The ancestor shook his head with a smile.
He stared straight at Lengying and said: “Yes, your system has been sealed but I’ve heard that the new king is unbeatable. He killed War King and supreme ancestors such as Bingchi Juezun.”
He paused for a bit: “That’s why I don’t think our clan wants to get involved in this mess. I’m taking back my earlier statement, Lucidity King clearly knew that this youth was exceptional before passing the throne to him.”
Lengying replied: “I can’t and won’t deny the new king’s power. He surprised everyone by killing those guys.”
“That’s why I said we can’t help even if we wanted to.” The ancestor said: “We both know how strong those ancestors were. Even if I go all out, I would only get a draw against War King, or to be generous, maybe I’m a little bit stronger. Your king’s power exceeded everyone’s expectations, and our clan doesn’t need to provoke such a powerful foe. I’m sorry, we won’t be able to help you, Brother Sun. We do feel indignant that you didn’t get rewarded for your loyalty to Nine Secrets.”
“I accept your sincerity, Brother Mu.” Lengying smiled: “But it looks like fear is paralyzing you just like in the past when you were up versus Lucidity King. Your hesitation and lack of decisiveness made you miss many great opportunities.”
“Brother Sun, your psychological taunting is useless against me. I’m no longer a hot-headed youth who get riles up by these comments. Please leave.” The ancestor smiled and said.
Zhang Jiadi remained on his knees with his head nearly touching the ground despite hearing the encouragement.