Chapter 680 – Inexplicable
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
All the gates of the Imperial City were tightly shut. The Divine Generals in the capital, the ministers of the court, and the princes were already inside the palace. Mao Qiuyu and Daoist Baishi had also hurried over from the Li Palace. With the passing of time, the intelligence delivered southwards from the snowy plains, that news which shook the entire continent and might bring about all sorts of unrest, was gradually being further detailed, more vividly portrayed.
Three days ago, on the very night of the coup of the Mausoleum of Books in the capital, a world-shaking event also took place in Xuelao City. The Demon Commander suddenly raised the flag of rebellion and led the army in attacking the Demon Palace. The Demon Lord suffered a sneak attack from Demon Military Advisor Black Robe and a hidden expert of the Council of Elders. Heavily injured, he fell into the Netherworld Spring, with no hope of survival.
The Demon Princess Nanke used a secret technique to explode her blood and shattered the barrier around the Demon Palace. Transforming into a peacock, she flew to the northeast, borrowing the sky filled with snow and wind to successfully escape. Seven Demon Generals loyal to the Demon Lord and tens of thousands of demon cavalry had been killed or executed in this rebellion. The streets of Xuelao City were so covered in blood that it seemed like a green ocean, intimidating all. Soon after, Black Robe and the Demon Commander presented the Demon Lord's youngest son as emperor and sent out consecutive edicts demanding that all the demon tribes and the army pledge their loyalty. At the same time, they issued an order of execution for Nanke.
Just what was going on here? All the major figures of the Great Zhou within the hall looked at each other in dismay. Even after this news had been confirmed as true from numerous different channels, they still found it difficult to believe…the greatest enemy of humanity for the past one thousand years, that devil who cast his shadow over the entire north, who not even Emperor Taizong had been able to kill…had just died like this?
Yes, one thousand years ago, the Demon Lord lost to Zhou Dufu and was severely wounded. This year, in Mount Han, in order to break through the array set up by the Elder of Heavenly Secrets, he had consumed a great deal of essence blood. A small number of people were also aware that when the Demon Lord was returning to Xuelao City, he had encountered the White Emperor. Presumably, in that earthshaking battle, his injuries had only worsened, but how could he just die like this?
What they found impossible to understand was, how could he die in a rebellion?
Who could find the strength to overturn the Demon Lord amongst the demons? It certainly could not be the Council of Elders, nor could it be any of the tribes who had had their brashness slaughtered out of them. It could only be the Demon Commander, who had control over a significant part of the Demon Army and also possessed an abnormally monstrous strength, and the enigmatic Black Robe, who had secretly gathered all sorts of power and influence. Moreover, the two of them would have had to work together.
The problem was that not even a storyteller with the wildest of imaginations would dare to think in this direction.
Everyone knew that Military Advisor Black Robe and the Demon Commander got along like fire and water. If the Demon Lord had not personally suppressed their conflict and mediated between the two so many times, it would have simply been impossible for the two to coexist.
The hatred the two had for each other could not have been fake, as this situation had already persisted for several centuries. Just who was it, then, that was able to make Black Robe and the Demon Lord discard their past enmity and take such an enormous risk? Who could the two have so much trust in that they would join hands and launch such a treacherous and terrifying attack against the Demon Lord?
Everyone subconsciously turned to a certain place in the hall. This was an unremarkable corner of the great hall. It was very quiet and serene, with no eunuchs or palace maids standing there. There was only a curtain of beads that noiselessly swayed in the autumn breeze, allowing the scene behind the curtain to be seen. Behind the curtain was not a seat, but a long hallway.
This long hallway led to a very ordinary room.
Many years ago, the legendary ministers who had their portraits in the Lingyan Pavilion were accustomed to spending their time in that room, drinking tea, playing chess, cursing, and passing that boring period before the court came into session.
At present, it had been many years since Emperor Taizong's soul had returned to the sea of stars, and those legendary ministers had followed him. There was no one left who would dare to be so relaxed within the Imperial Palace, to act with such magnanimity. Even the stories of the events within that ordinary room had been almost forgotten by the vast majority of people.
One person had not forgotten, because he was a person of that generation.
He was not placed in the Lingyan Pavilion, nor did he have the reputation of those legendary ministers. However, in truth, in that generation, he was even more important than most of the people in the Lingyan Pavilion. This was because before those legendary ministers died, before their portraits were painted by Daoist Wu, they had all been personally examined by this man. From another perspective, those legendary ministers had all been sent up to the Lingyan Pavilion by this man.
Right now, he was in that ordinary room.
Nobody knew if he was reminiscing of his once-comrades-in-arms, or if he was reporting something to Emperor Taizong.
During the coup of the Mausoleum of Books, the Tianhai Divine Empress had once asked who would resolve the threat of the demons.
Shang Xingzhou said that he would be able to resolve it.
Han Qing believed that Shang Xingzhou could do it, so he had cast the Frost God Spear and completed the Autumn Slaying.
After three days had passed, the Demon Lord had truly died, Xuelao City was thrown into chaos, and Shang Xingzhou had proved his words.
Right now, Han Qing was probably hurrying towards Xuelao City. Would the once-crown prince of the demons be willing to see his youngest brother ascend to the throne of the Demon Lord?
The important figures in the hall all stared speechlessly at the silently swaying curtain of beads.
They could not see Shang Xingzhou, but their eyes were still brimming with reverence.
In overcast conditions, the light of the capital would somewhat reflect off the clouds, so the darkness was not too thick.
When there were no clouds, the vast sky of stars would shine over the world, and the darkness would still not be too thick.
In short, a flourishing place like the capital would very rarely experience an extremely thick darkness, such that one wouldn't be able to see one's own extended hand. The only exception was if a torrential rain were to extinguish the lights of every home.
The starlight was broken apart by Red Geese and several extremely precious flying carriages. Chen Changsheng stood on the great banyan tree, somewhat inexplicably beginning to recall that torrential rain from three days ago.
Perhaps it was because three days ago, many things had still not taken place. At that time, he still had the chance to pretend that his life was beautiful and peaceful.
Just like that period three years ago when it was just him and Luoluo in the Orthodox Academy.
However, one year ago, atop this great banyan tree, Tang Thirty-Six had said to him that there was something problematic with his teacher, problematic with a lot of people, and that he needed to carefully think about these problems.
Chen Changsheng had thought of these problems, but he didn't have the ability or wisdom to resolve them.
Tang Thirty-Six had left, compelled back to Wenshui by the Tang clan, and he didn't know if there would be a day when he returned.
Xu Yourong had left, forcibly dispatched by Mo Yu under the Tianhai Divine Empress's orders to Holy Maiden Peak. He did not know how great the storm would be when next she returned to the capital.
Zhexiu had left. Like a true lone wolf, he had vanished into the lights and darkness of the capital. However, he was surely still in the capital, but Chen Changsheng did not know what he was preparing to do.
What truly made Chen Changsheng somewhat lonely, or perhaps sad, was this: Zhou Tong was still alive.
He already knew the complete picture of the coup in the Mausoleum of Books.
The crabapple courtyard had been destroyed, but Zhou Tong was still doing very well. Moreover…he had also poisoned Xue Xingchuan to death.
The shifting in the capital had begun from the moment the Imperial Design had lost its effectiveness. It could be said that Zhou Tong had played the most important role in this.
He had betrayed the Tianhai Divine Empress.
Chen Changsheng could accept this fact.
Because Zhexiu was a wolf while Zhou Tong was a dog. A wolf would travel a thousand li to eat meat while a dog would eat shit.
But Xu Shiji had also betrayed her.
Even the Tianhai clan had betrayed her.
Chen Changsheng found it hard to accept these.
It had nothing to do with standpoints or factions. He just found it difficult to accept.
This sort of world was truly too inexplicable.
He truly found it impossible to like this sort of inexplicable and mysterious world.