TGL Volume 4, Chapter 12 (1)

Sophia’s immediate danger passed, which is why I left. Whether or not Lucia and Softie can come up with a compromise on the soul-devouring acorn inside of their daughter is none of my business. I don’t really care which way they go about it: turning Sophia into a mortal, forcing Sophia through bitter cultivation, letting Sophia harvest souls. I only think it’ll be a shame if she turns into a mortal. After a hundred or so years pass, she’ll die. A hundred years isn’t even that long. Granted, I haven’t even been alive for thirty years, but that’s irrelevant. My lifespan is over a few thousand years, and a hundred is just a drop in the bucket.

My concern now is preparing a trap for all these invaders. My strongest trump card, Lucia, can’t be used easily. I have to poke and prod her the right way, or something disastrous may happen. For example, I could tell her to teleport over and defeat the invaders currently in the city, but who knows if she’ll be distracted along the way? Lucia is a very strong card, but there’s a random probability of success built into her. I have to rely on myself—of course, the forces I’ve accumulated count as relying on my own ability; after all, I was the one who gathered them.

“You’re absolutely sure no harm will befall me?”

As a core part of the trap, Bloodmoon is here as well. He’s been surprisingly cooperative; there’s probably a plot brewing in his head relating to recovering his strength and dominating the Immortal Continent. Should I get rid of him? Of course not. He’ll be a strong ally when fighting against the seven great sects in the immortal realm. The enemy of my enemy is my friend and all that. Besides, it won’t be too late to get rid of him after I’ve established a foothold in the immortal realm. “It’s impossible to be absolutely sure about anything, so I won’t make such bold claims.”

Bloodmoon stroked his chin. He was sitting in the center of a room with eight walls, and I was busy setting up some formations. “Then, in your opinion, what’s the likelihood of me suffering grievous injuries?”

“Around ninety-nine percent.” Isn’t it obvious? “I’m going to injure you.”

“Excuse me?”

“The most realistic illusion is reality. If I want to trick these invaders into letting their guard down, the easiest way is to give them a reason to let their guards down.”

Bloodmoon frowned. “Wouldn’t the usual way be for me to fake an injury and kill anyone who lets their guard down?”

“And how many people would that fool?” I’ve read Bloodmoon’s memories. I already know what he’s capable of, but he doesn’t know what I can do. “Right now, you’re no different from a quasi-immortal, one on the weaker end of the spectrum at that. You saw how many invaders came through. At best, you’ll defeat ten groups before finally collapsing.”

Bloodmoon gave me a sad smile. It didn’t stir any emotions inside of me. He might’ve seemed harmless, but the number of people he killed was greater than the number of books I’ve read in my life—and I’ve read a lot. “Why not a mix of the two? Leave my body unharmed, and use your formations after I’ve exhausted my strength. I don’t feel too comfortable placing my life in another’s hands.”

He’s wearing a choker that’ll explode if he doesn’t listen to what I say, and it’s only now he wants to talk about how comfortable he feels? “Isn’t it a little too late for that? Just trust in my arrangements. Believe in your value a little more; I wouldn’t let such an important chess piece die.”

Bloodmoon sighed and closed his heads, crossing his legs into a meditating pose. “To think I’d one day be the kindest person in a room, just a few weeks ago I couldn’t have imagined it.”

“Don’t flatter yourself.” I won’t let Bloodmoon get under my skin. Also, it’s not like it bothers me if people think I’m evil or cruel. Does a lion care about the feelings of a gazelle? It’s a good thing I learned Ten Thousand Thoughts; the benefits are already showing themselves. I can easily hold a conversation with Bloodmoon while setting up formations. Theoretically, it’ll be possible for me to set up two formations at once; I’m only limited by the number of limbs I have. It’d be nice if I had a few mechanical puppets I could control with my mind. Too bad puppet creation isn’t my specialty. Actually, didn’t Bloodmoon have a method to control corpses? It’s a much better one than the last one I had obtained from the Reanimating Corpse Sect. That one could only instill simple commands into the corpses.

“What are you doing?” Bloodmoon’s eyes were closed, but he still noticed my actions.

There’s no need to hide anything. “Creating corpse puppets.”

Bloodmoon’s eyes snapped open, and he walked over with a frown. “Weren’t you setting up formations? Don’t tell me these are going to be the things defending me. I can destroy them with a sneeze.”

“I’m going to use them to help me create formations faster.” I already learned the method to create corpse puppets. I learn the fundamentals of all techniques I confiscate. It only takes a mere moment to digest the information in a jade slip after all; it’d feel like a waste if I didn’t. As for why I have these corpses…, well, who doesn’t carry corpses around just in case? I blame Lucia for rubbing off her hoarding tendencies on me.

“You missed a part.”

“That was intentional; I’m going to manually control these corpses. I don’t want them to have any intelligence.” It’s odd having someone watch me as I work. Lucia doesn’t have the attention span. Softie dislikes being alone with me due to her dislike for me as a person. Mirta occasionally spies on me, but she really doesn’t have the stomach for severed limbs; I’ve found a few vomit stains in her hiding spots. It’s only recently that Sophia’s been wandering around my lab as I worked, and she’s too young to understand what I’m doing. “How’s teaching? Is it fun? If you’re bored of it, why not become my assistant?”

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