In the Endless Beast Region, by the gate to the Nine-tailed Fox Clan's mountain.
The mountain was covered in nine-tailed foxes decked in red ribbons. The honor guard were beating drums and gongs. They’d already been playing for three days and three nights.
Within the clan head's quarters, everything in sight was red. A woman dressed in scarlet ceremonial robes sat before a dressing table.
Her beauty was unparalleled, her smile radiant.
Her lips were painted pale pink. Two middle-aged women stood behind her, tending to her hair and clothes
A young woman on the cusp of adulthood ran into the room and blurted out impetuously. A little girl aged only about four or five clasped her hand and trailed in after her.
The woman had been doing her make-up, but turned and waved as they entered.
"Second sister, little sister,” she said with a smile. “You've arrived just in time. I was about to go looking for you."
"What for?"asked the young woman.
Then she waved her hands and said, "First, let me ask a question. Everyone is saying that you're going to marry the Human World's Yellow Emperor. Is it true?"
"It is," replied the woman, gently rubbing her younger sister's cheeks.
"But aren't we yao?” asked the younger woman, eyes brimming with confusion. “Haven't you always said that humans and yao walk different paths? What are you marrying a human for?"
Then something seemed to occur to her.
"Is it because he helped us earlier and you want to repay him?"
“That's part of the reason, I suppose. But mostly it's because I truly love him," she said, lips curling into a smile. Then she turned to the middle-aged women behind her.
"Please leave us for now. I'd like to talk to my sisters."
The servants left. The young woman nodded politely at them and watched their departure.
As soon as they were gone, she looked back at her older sister and frowned unhappily. "You always taught us that humans and yao are different...."
The woman simply tousled her younger sister’s hair, her expression doting. "Just wait until you grow up, then you'll understand."
"I don't ever want to grow up. Things are great just the way they are with you right here in the clan..... All I have to do is take care of our little sister."
She smiled and rubbed the little girl's head. "Lil’ Zhu, I'm right, aren't I?"
The little girl nodded childishly, as the woman watched them with a smile.
After a moment’s hesitation, she seemed to have made up her mind about something. She took a sandalwood box that had been prepared for this very moment from its spot on the dressing table.
"Second sister, reach out your hand."
"What for?" she asked, but nevertheless held out her hand.
A piece of ice crystal jade was placed into her open palm. A chill spread from it, radiating up her arm and throughout her whole body.
"I’m getting married, so my position as clan head naturally falls to you. The ice crystal jade has been passed down by generation after generation of the Nine-Tailed Fox Clan. Despite this, my achievements in ice techniques are unexceptional, bringing shame upon our ancestors. On the other hand, your abilities are truly incredible. I'll give this ice crystal to you, along with the position of clan head. I hope you'll help the Nine-tailed Fox Clan continue into the future. "
With that, she stood up from her chair and placed the red veil lying on the table over her face.
"Please forgive my selfishness. From now on, the Nine-Tailed Fox clan is in your hands."
The gongs rang out in unison and firecrackers went off with a bang.
A row of immortal beasts knelt by the clan gate, a man standing to to their side. He was clad in yellow imperial robes. His with eyes were like deep pools, his thick eyebrows dark as ink, his face unreadable.
Even just standing there, he had an air of imperial authority, as if all other lifeforms were beneath his notice and should submit themselves to his rule.
When he saw the red-clothed woman approach, his expressionless face suddenly brightened as he moved to greet her.
By the entrance to the clan mountain, the young woman’s eyes filled with tears. Her hands firmly clasped the ice crystal she’d been given.
“Second sister, why are you crying? What is big sister doing? Isn’t she the leader of the Nine-tailed fox clan? She can’t leave our clan’s mountain, can she?
The little girl’s soft and immature face brimmed with confusion. The young woman wiped the tears from her eyes, then smiled and gently tousled the girl’s hair.
“Big sister’s leaving in search of what she wants.”
“What is it she wants?”
"Him, I guess." The young woman’s gaze fell on the man clad in imperial robes, her expression complex. She didn’t know how to feel.
“Lil’ Yan, are you sure you want to leave?”
As he held her hand, the robed man couldn’t help but ask.
She turned and looked back at the young woman standing by the gate. Sensing her big sister’s gaze, she hurriedly turned away.
Seeing this, the woman’s lips curled into a smile. “Second sister’s grown up, she can handle things by herself now.”
“Murder, someone’s been murdered….”
A sudden commotion broke amongst the honor guard as they called out in confused panic. The man in imperial robes frowned, then called out to the armored man by his side.
“Changxian, go find out what has happened.”
Before Changxian could take more than a few steps, a basin of red liquid splashed toward the robed man.
He sidestepped, protecting himself and the woman in red with his robes. The crimson liquid splashed onto his clothes.
The smell of blood assaulted his nostrils.
The liquid that had just splashed onto his clothes was blood.
The instant he saw this, he frowned deeply.
Taking a wife was a joyous affair, but seeing blood was extremely unlucky.
“Who dares act wantonly at this emperor’s wedding?”
“It’s been a while since we last saw each other. Brother Yellow Emperor, are you saying you’ve forgotten me?”
Crude laughter resounded outward, and before long a bulky man with horns on his head appeared, hands grasping one of the musicians from the honor guard.
He casually snapped the musician’s neck, then spoke again. “The grand news of your union with the empress of the Nine-tailed Fox Clan has spread throughout the lands and seas. I came here especially to congratulate you, but my clan has an innate love of battle. I didn’t know how else to honor you, so I used fresh blood, the thing we love most.”
“Xingtian, aren’t you just here to cause trouble?” Changxian called out in rage. “Did the Flame Emperor send you?”
“Changxian, don’t be rude,” said the Yellow Emperor, reaching out to stop him. “The Flame Emperor and I are like branches of the same tree, as close as brothers, how could he possibly send someone to cause calamity on my wedding day?”
Xingtian spat a mouthful of phlegm onto the ground and snorted. “How hypocritical. ‘Branches of the same tree?’ What a farce. This world was originally supposed to be governed by my lord, the Flame Emperor. What are you in in comparison?”
“Chiyou has been defeated. For the sake of his principles, the Flame Emperor decided to prevent future infighting and step down. We all admire his judiciousness and righteousness. Xingtian, the Flame Emperor said it himself: the throne shall be given the Yellow Emperor. For you to say such things now is losing face for your master.”
The woman in red lifted her veil. Spilled blood at a wedding was a terrible omen, so naturally she was furious too.
“Hmph, the Yellow Emperor is a base and despicable person, everyone knows that,” said Xingtian, snorting contemptuously at her. “Empress, you achieved great merits in the fight against Chiyou, so I’ll call you ‘empress’ this one last one. You are about to marry this base and despicable person, so naturally you’re inclined to defend him.”
“But I’m not here to stir up trouble this time. There’s someone here to see you.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter