The bloody mist was so thick you practically couldn’t see your own feet. This was the third floor. However, it was different from the other two, in that it didn’t have a golden light barrier. All it had was a wooden bed and a grey-haired elder, as well as rubble scattered across the floor.
The old man didn’t so much as raise his head. He faced away from the man descending the stairs and muttered, “Why is it you?
“The little guy thought you too unpredictable. He hesitated, but in the end, decided not to come down here. As your old friend, I came down here to see you instead.”
This new arrival was none other than Venerate Spirit Treasure. He was still clad in green, and he even had a hint of a playful grin at his lips.
The former Demon Emperor had told Ye Zichen to come down in person, but he didn’t dare set aside all of his reservations. At the end of the day, the former Demon Emperor was a major power, one not even the likes of Venerate Spirit Treasure could defeat. Ye Zichen’s cultivation was just too low.
He couldn’t guarantee his own safety if he came down here to converse during one of the former Demon Emperor’s fits.
He absolutely had to see the former Demon Emperor, but that didn’t mean he was totally brainless.
Venerate Spirit Treasure looked at the old man seated cross-legged on his bed. He showed no signs of explosiveness or violence at all, not even when Venerate Spirit Treasure, a yao, got within three meters of him. His presence seemed completely unperturbed.
He didn’t even object when Venerate Spirit Treasure described them as old friends.
“Sit.” The former Demon Emperor pointed at a spot near the bed. Were Ye Zichen here to see this, this show of friendliness would have left him tongue-tied.
Nevermind the former Demon Emperor’s distaste for you; not long ago, he’d forced Venerate Spirit Treasure to call upon his natal divine artifact! Every time he used it represented a sacrifice!
They’d even cursed each other through the hole in the bell, yet now, everything seemed perfectly peaceful.
“There’s nowhere to sit in this hovel.” Venerate Spirit Treasure twisted his neck, then took out two bottles of nectar and tossed them over. “We’d best make a bit of a commotion. If we’re too quiet, that little guy outside might suspect something. Don’t be fooled; the kid hasn’t lived long, but he’s crafty as can be.”
“He told you to come here?” asked the former Demon Emperor.
“That’s right, and to tell you the truth, I’ve already pledged allegiance to him. You ought to understand what that means, coming from me.” Venerate Spirit Treasure chuckled.
“You’re saying he’s….”
Suddenly, these two pinnacle-level experts of their respective realms fell silent. The former Demon Emperor took the two bottles of nectar Venerate Spirit Treasure had given them and drained each in a single swig.
He then tossed the empty bottles onto the floor. When he saw this, Venerate Spirit Treasure arched his brows, but he said nothing.
“You’re here on that kid’s behalf, to recruit me in exchange for amnesty? Don’t think I don’t know why he wants to see me. Demons can’t possibly fight on humans’ behalf. I’d rather stay here in the dark than become someone’s subordinate. Since we’ve known each other for ten thousand years, I’ll let you leave. Go up and tell ‘heaven’s chosen’ not to come looking for me again,” the former Demon Emperor said flatly.
“Blasted old man.” Venerate Spirit Treasure grimaced, shook his head, and rubbed his nose. The former Demon King was clearly more than strong enough to break out of prison, but because of a bet, he’d suffered in here for more than ten thousand years. The thought made Venerate Spirit Treasure’s heart fill with melancholy.
“Xue Hong is dead,” said Venerate Spirit Treasure.
The former Demon Emperor instantly went rigid. Had he been facing Venerate Spirit Treasure, the yao would have noticed the change in his expression. But he wasn’t, and when he spoke, he sounded as dispassionate as ever. “Glad to hear it.”
“You’re really heartless, aren’t you? You ought to know full well that Xue Hong risked being accused of betraying humankind to create a space that could hide your presence this thoroughly and ensure your safety. He did all that to protect you, yet you’re saying you’re glad he’s dead? Were you two really friends?”
Venerate Spirit Treasure clearly knew some secrets others didn’t. If he’d said this to the current great emperors, they would have been shocked. Most likely, not even the current Ocean Emperor, Xue Yang, Xue Hong’s son, knew of Xue Hong’s friendship with the former Demon Emperor.
“That’s none of your concern,” said the former Demon Emperor just as coldly as before.
“After imprisoning you, Xue Hong single-handedly went off to fight the demons, and he never came back. You ought to know full well what he left to do,” said Venerate Spirit Treasure.
“I said, it’s none of your concern!”
Bloody smog burst madly out of the former Demon Emperor’s body.
Venerate Spirit Treasure’s fingers rapidly formed hand seals to prevent the pressure from reaching him, but he still didn’t back down. “Even at the very end, Xue Hong didn’t forget to get revenge for you, his sword brother. But you’ve been hiding in here like a turtle for ten thousand years, disregarding everything that goes on in the outside world. I can’t help but feel sorry for Xue Hong. At the end of the day, demons are demons. You’ve let down Xue Hong’s fervor and hot-bloodedness. He was even willing to attempt to assassinate the man who usurped your thrown!”
A disdainful smile appeared on Venerate Spirit Treasure’s lips. Then, he flipped his hands and took out a cell phone.
He’d obtained this outside without Ye Zichen knowing it, his goal, to give it to the former Demon Emperor. But after this conversation, it suddenly seemed unnecessary.
He crushed it with his divine power, and the fragments scattered on the ground. “Hmph, a waste of time.”
With that, Venerate Spirit Treasure turned and left without so much as a second look. But then, the former Demon Emperor, who’d been sitting on the bed with his head lowered all this time, looked up. His reddish purple eyes stared intently at Venerate Spirit Treasure’s back.
“Who exactly are you? You shouldn’t know about these things.”
“It doesn’t matter who I am. What matters is, I came down here to talk to you, and you’ve really disappointed me.” Venerate Spirit Treasure’s eyes brimmed with disdain. “You’ve been hiding away for ten thousand years just to keep yourself safe. Is that really what you want? To live out the rest of your days in darkness and solitude, with no sense of the passing of time…. It seems your awe-inspiring valiance has long since been frittered away. I hope you enjoy your remaining years in peace. Go ahead and honor your lost bet until you die.”
“Stay where you are!” The former Demon Emperor roared!
“Is there anything else you want to ask?” Venerate Spirit Treasure turned around and chuckled. “If you want to attack me, I’d encourage you to give up on the idea. You…. aren’t a match for me!”
“I was never a person of this era to begin with.”
“It doesn’t matter whether you are or not. Besides, you’ve already chosen to hide, so is there any need to concern yourself with that? All you have to do is obediently wait in here, throw temper tantrums to scare people off, and intimidate the rest of the prisoners. If that’s all you need to be satisfied, fine. I just feel bad about Xue Hong!”
Venerate Spirit Treasure pursed his lips and left without even looking back. No matter how the former Demon Emperor shouted, he didn’t so much as pause.
“Who is the current Demon Emperor!?”
“Kui Lin!” Then, Venerate Spirit Treasure, who’d been right on the verge of leaving the dungeons, turned. In a flash, he was right in front of the former Demon Emperor, and he held another cell phone. “For you to ask that question means you’re not as far gone as I thought. How about it? Want to get out and see the world again before the era ends?”
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