Monarch of Evernight - Volume 10 - The Flag of Evernight (1183-) Chapter 1269: Good Future
News of Song Zining’s breakthrough spread throughout the Empire like wildfire, eliciting a greater reaction than when Zhao Jundu had broken through. The commotion was perhaps even greater than when Qianye walked away unscathed from Frozen Jade Manor.
The Empire was in a resurgence lately, with numerous geniuses appearing from the younger generation. The accomplishment was much greater than the previous generation’s. Some of the major-clan scions who had been hidden as reserves progressed by leaps and bounds, so much so that they could now be placed on the stage. But no one would’ve imagined that the next to breakthrough after the twin stars was Song Zining.
The natural phenomenon produced by Worldly Prosperity was witnessed by tens of thousands of Imperial soldiers. His future was definitely boundless.
People in the Empire reacted differently—some jumped for joy and others sighed in admiration, but there were also people who fell deep in thought. However, everyone who recalled the Song clan—where it used to be and where it was now—felt the same resonating schadenfreude.
At the Highland Song Clan’s Enlightenment Manor, Duchess An’s old residence remained neatly kempt. Song Zhongnian walked through the gardens, watching his busy family members moving things about.
This used to be the duchess’ favorite place, so the Elder Assembly made the decision to preserve and seal the place in her memory.
There was a beautiful lady beside Song Zhongnian, a quiet, charming, and graceful young woman. She looked somewhat sad and almost as though she wanted to memorize the current scenery.
“Ziyan, what are you thinking about?”
Song Ziyan said in a whisper, “I was just thinking about how well the old ancestor treated me back then. I fear I won’t be able to come here anymore.”
Song Zhongnian’s face was full of worry and sorrow. His creases had deepened, and it seemed like he had aged ten years. He sighed deeply, saying, “There’s no helping it. Us unworthy descendants are too ashamed to face the ancestor. Those old fogeys probably don’t want to come here anymore, either, and hence, this decision. Even I don’t want to come here. After all, the Song clan was demoted in my hands. I don’t know how the history books will describe me, but it can’t be good.”
He laughed self-deprecatingly. “Things aren’t fortunate for you. These are tough times for our Song clan, no, Song family, and that has affected your marriage. The Kong family has also refused the engagement.”
Song Ziyan shook her head. “I didn’t want to marry, to begin with!”
“You can’t say that! A girl has to marry sooner or later. No rush, I’ll help you make arrangements.”
Song Ziyan looked up. “My marriage isn’t important, but are you not going to summon seventh brother back even at this point?”
“Will he even be willing to come back?”
“Our family is in trouble, he’ll come back.”
Song Zhongnian sighed. “You might not know, but Song Zining and Qianye have made great progress on Fort Continent. That Qianye is on track to proclaim himself king, and considering their relationship, Zining’s status won’t be too far off. There’s nothing in the family to impress him. Besides, Song Zining made his intentions clear when he left the family, how will he face those elders if he comes back?”
Song Ziyan said, “Grandpa, you’re still thinking about those elders? They see nothing but themselves. When have they ever worked for the greater good? Why should we listen to them? As I see it, we should just disperse the elder assembly.”
“Nonsense! The assembly is a rule laid down by the ancestors, every clan has the same system. This is no laughing matter.”
“If we must keep the assembly, we should change all of its members.”
“What do you know? Won’t that make us even less unified?”
“That’s still better than having them slowly break the Song family apart.”
Song Zhongnian’s face was ashen. He said with a loud snort, “This isn’t a topic for a girl like you.”
Song Ziyan sighed. She then softened her tone, saying, “Seventh brother will surely be able to suppress those elders.”
“Suppress? What is he going to suppress them with? He’s not even a divine champion, who’ll listen to him?”
“He will breakthrough sooner or later. Besides, who else in the family is his match even if he isn’t? He also has Qianye’s help.” Song Ziyan’s expression changed at the mention of Qianye, then quickly recovered to normalcy.
Song Zhongnian said with a frown, “It’s not your place to speak of family matters! If becoming a divine champion is so easy, we won’t be without one for so many years since the old ancestors. Let’s see when that day actually comes.”
It was at this moment that an attendant arrived hurriedly, shouting, “Lord, urgent… report!”
“What’s with the panic? Look at yourself. I’ll send you off to Transcendent if you don’t learn to be calm!” In his bad mood, Song Zhongnian berated the attendant while opening the envelope. He then fished out the contents and looked through them.
His hand froze up after a single glance; he didn’t even notice the report falling to the ground.
A curious Song Ziyan picked up the paper. After reading the continents, she cried out in joy, “Seventh brother is a divine champion now!? This is great news! Our Song family finally has a divine champion! Grandpa…”
Her voice slowly faded away when she saw Song Zhongnian’s expression. She suddenly realized something at this point—there might have been some chance of Song Zining returning if he couldn’t break through. Now that he had broken through the divine champion threshold, there was no longer any hope of him returning.
The Imperial Palace, Pepper Hall. Empress Li was leaning on the couch, stroking the cat in her arms. The palace hall was warm, but she was still clad in a thick woolen shawl and her face was abnormally pale.
An old inner attendant walked in with a booklet and began reading to her the important happenings in the Empire. The first of them was Song Zining’s breakthrough to become a divine champion.
Stunned, Empress Li’s grip tightened unknowingly. The cat struggled out of her arms in pain and scuttled toward a corner.
“So he has also broken through. Now that’s unexpected.”
The old attendant said, “This is indeed unexpected, perhaps the Song clan can return to being a major clan.”
Empress Li said, “There might’ve been some chance if he hadn’t broken through, but now, there’s none. That is unless he’s ruthless enough to clean up all of those elders.”
“This matter is all too easy for the seventh young master. Who in the entire clan is his match? Even all the elders together can do nothing against the Seventh Young Master and his Worldly Prosperity.”
“Can and willing are two different matters,” Empress Li said with a laugh. “Besides, why would he need to stain his hands when his future is so good.”
“The Empress is wise.” The attendant was enlightened.
Empress Li shifted her posture, frowning in contemplation.
“The Empire has acquired another expert. This is something worthy of celebration. Why do you look unhappy?”
The Empress sighed. “I’m concerned about something. Say, do you think this Zining should cultivate divination or not?”
“Is there even a need to ask? Your Majesty must be testing me. The seventh young master naturally… naturally…” The old attendant stopped halfway.
“What? Is there any difficulty?”
The attendant sighed. “I was thinking at first that he should at least attempt the heavenly monarch realm due to his World Prosperity. Lord Jundu is now shut out of the next realm, and Qianye is, in the end, not of our race. Young Noble Zining is the only candidate throughout the Empire. On the other hand, he might not be inferior to Marshal Lin if he cultivates divination. A heavenly monarch or a second Marshal Lin, I cannot say which of them is more important to the Empire.”
Empress Li said, “That’s what’s distressing me.”
She stood up from the couch and, with a wave of her hand, summoned the cat back into her arms. Empress Li caressed the feline while saying, “This matter, I think I’ll just let him worry about it. Why would I have to feel stressed?”
The attendant wanted to say something at first but was hesitant. Finally, he said, “You’re right, Your Highness.”
Empress Li waved her hand, sending the attendant away. Two other attendants were whispering among themselves outside of the hall.
“Did you hear? The seventh young noble is now a divine champion!”
“The one from the Song clan, of course, who else could’ve broken through?”
“Won’t the Song clan be in despair?”
“I’ve never seen people court disaster with such enthusiasm, they even drove away someone like the seventh young noble. The heavens won’t tolerate it if the Song clan isn’t demoted.”
The old attendant shouted with a serious expression, “What are you two gossiping about!? I’ll pull your tongues out if I catch this again.”
The two attendants were shocked out of their wits. They said with faces full of smiles, “This isn’t such a big matter, won’t the entire Empire know after half a day.”
The old attendant felt that it was true, so he simply left with a swing of his sleeves. He arrived at a remote courtyard, where he opened up a piece of paper and filled it with tiny writing. He rolled the paper up carefully and put it in his pocket, then left the palace in civilian apparel citing outside business.
The attendant walked through the streets for a good half hour before coming to a store selling products from different lands.
The manager immediately welcomed the guest with a big smile. “Sire! What do you want this time?”
The attendant picked up a random vase, then put it back down. “Any interesting stuff lately?”
The manager went back into the store and soon returned with several boxes. “All our new goods are in here. If you ask if there’s anything special, I must say we have more goods from Fort Continent these days.”
The old attendant shook his head after looking through the contents. “There’s nothing good, next time then.”
“Take care!” The manager saw the old attendant away before moving the boxes back inside. He thought back to the sequence in which the old attendant had opened the boxes and fished out one of them. There was now a sheet of paper inside.
Two days later, this paper arrived on Twilight Continent and into the hands of a mysterious person. This messenger could only see a pair of eyes as the person was clad entirely in armor.
The man opened the letter and read the contents several times before putting the correspondence away. He then produced a drop of translucent origin blood and placed it in the hands of the messenger, saying in a raspy voice, “Well done, this is the reward.”
The delighted messenger fell to his knees. “Thank you, Sire!”
The mysterious person turned and left, leaving dark-purple flames with every step.
Castle Ducasse was currently undergoing a large-scale expansion. There was nothing special about this mysterious person except for the lowered visor, something ordinary people would only do when in battle. He was just like any other ordinary vampire.
He arrived at a distant hall and entered a certain room in the corner. The decor here was plain and crude, with only some simple furniture. He had just sat down when the door opened and an old vampire with white hair walked in.
This elderly vampire gazed at the mysterious person with pale eyes. “Have you gotten it?”
“How is it?”
“Just as we had guessed, perhaps even more.”
The white-haired vampire elder left without asking for the paper. The mysterious vampire sat down with his back against the wall, gazing at the yellow light on the ceiling. No one knew what he was thinking.