Chapter 975 – Caskets and the Big Dipper Handle
“Seven Elements… Relief Palace?” Hu Bugui was taken slightly aback. “This name’s kinda weird. There’s a legend that, during the Fiendgod Age, the Demon Race had seven supreme aces who were called the Seven Elements Relief Devil Monarchs. It’s said that they each reigned a different territory for an age and was unrivaled in power and influence, such that even a Quasi-emperor could do nothing to them. Later on, for some unknown reason, they bizarrely disappeared overnight and were never seen again… Could the [Seven Elements Relief Palace] ahead have something to do with them?”
Ye Qingyu was briefly stunned, “Brother Hu Bugui, you also know about the Seven Elements Relief Demon Monarchs?”
This was a tad surprising to him.
Many years ago, when he was still a low profile student in White Deer Academy, he fortunately obtained the [Fiendgod Titled Chart] and thus began studying the ancient Fiendgod characters in the academy’s library. Later on, he once again delved deeply into the one hundred eight ancient characters in the [Cloud Top Cauldron]. As a result, he had a small understanding of written words from the Fiendgod Age and knew the legend of the Seven Elements Relief Demon Monarchs, whom he had never thought Hu Bugui would also have heard of. It must be known that, like the Chaos Demon Emperor, they lived during the final phase of the Fiendgod Age and thus there were few official records of them.
“Hehe, of course I know about them. Don’t you know, I once dug up several old graves from the Fiendgod Age…” While briefly excited, Hu Bugui committed a slip of the tongue and laughed awkwardly as soon as he realized it.
“What? As a chief bandit, you also raided tombs and dug up graves? You truly are an immoral piece of shit.” The silly dog Little Nine looked at him with disdainful eyes.
Hu Bugui’s old face turned red for once.
Ye Qingyu laughed without saying anything.
He suddenly began to understand where Hu Bugui’s Emperor qi tile came from – it probably had something to do with the old graves he mentioned. However, it was a little exaggerated to believe that this geezer had managed to dig up the tomb of a Martial Emperor from the Fiendgod Age.
“Hehe, let’s not stand outside any longer. Since there’s a huge palace ahead, hehe, based on my experience, there’re definitely treasures in there. Go go go, let’s go take a look.” Hu Bugui put on a face of excitement as he spoke, when he was actually trying to change the topic.
Ye Qingyu nodded.
The party walked up to the door and gave a gentle push, upon which it immediately opened.
It seemed as if all rays of light were devoured by a mysterious power once they entered the palace.
It was dim inside the palace.
The interior was extremely spacious.
After allowing his consciousness power to radiate in all directions, Ye Qingyu carefully sensed and observed the place.
The interior space of the [Seven Elements Relief Palace] took up at least a hundred square meters. It was abnormally spacious and incomparably dim, with the only source of light being the tiny stars which twinkled in the dome above the palace. Contrary to Hu Bugui’s and the silly dog’s imaginations, there were no heaps of divine treasures, and aside from the prisms engraved on the black rock walls and pillars, there were no other embellishments or monuments.
A rich and intense smell of blood pervaded the center of the palace.
“Wow, this smell… could there be something nice to eat?”
The silly dog immediately became so excited that its eyes glowed in red and its saliva dribbled as it turned into flowing light and charged forth.
Ye Qingyu and Hu Bugui, both of whom felt shocked, gave chase hurriedly.
Several dozen dead bodies were lying at sixes and sevens on the black rock surface.
Most of them belonged to half Saint or early Saint experts, of which some were of the Demon Race, while others were wearing the standard clothing of Human Race sects. They looked like they had perished not long ago and gave off an extremely rich smell of blood. Moreover, the yuan qi and auras that remained in these bodies were still vigorous and strong, indicating that they had been worked up to their highest battle states before the deaths of these experts.
“These people had died by mutual slaughter.” Hu Bugui’s experience enabled him to quickly form a verdict.
Ye Qingyu agreed with this opinion.
It was likely that these experts had arrived here by luck earlier and then discovered something which caused a mass scramble. Thereafter, a battle of considerable scale broke out, resulting in the deaths of many.
“Eek, isn’t that Mao Tianwu of Li Mountain Valley…” As Hu Bugui observed all around, he suddenly recognized the identity of one of the human corpses. After letting out a sigh, he continued, “He was the master of Li Mountain Valley until about a thousand years ago, when he voluntarily handed his position to a successor and disappeared from the Clear River Domain. It’s believed that he’d already attained the early Saint realm by that time but was then perpetually unable to make further breakthroughs, and that’s why he decided to go search for opportunities in other domains.”
“How did you get to know about him?” The silly dog gulped down its saliva incessantly as it asked casually.
“Hehehe, I saw a portrait of him in the treasure vault of Li Mountain Valley when I ‘visited’ more than ten years ago.” Hu Bugui smiled with a hint of mischief.
A visit to the treasure vault?
Ye Qingyu instantly understood what Hu Bugui meant by “visit” and did not know whether to laugh or cry. After some thought, he said, “Cough… let’s continue looking about.”
With that, he reached a hand out and grabbed hold of the silly dog before walking to the side.
“Woof, how dare you deny me this feast! Woof… let me go…” Hoping to devour the corpses of the dead, the silly dog desperately threatened and struggled to break free from Ye Qingyu’s arms, but to no avail.
Soon, the trio discovered a few strange things.
In the middle of the palace, seven caskets were arranged in the formation of the Big Dipper.
These caskets were primitively modeled and were made from highly intact and glossy black rock spars. Every side of each casket was layered with a Big Dipper relief sculpture which could not be any more exquisite. Although the caskets all looked completely alike, they were engraved with different ancient fiendgod characters. Arranged from left to right were the words [Alkaid], [Mizar], [Alioth], [Megrez], [Phecda], [Merak], and [Dubhe].
“These are the names of the stars of the Big Dipper.”
Ye Qingyu muttered to himself, frowning slightly.
The silly dog laboriously broke free from Ye Qingyu’s hands and leaped onto one of the caskets, then sighed, “Who cares about the stars of the Big Dipper. After walking for half a day, all I see is a few broken caskets. This is a palace of dead people!”
“Hehe, you don’t understand, gluttonous dog. Based on my many years of digging up graves and raiding tombs… no, I mean, many years of entering and exploring deep and dangerous places, these caskets most definitely hold treasures within!” As he spoke, a joyful-looking Hu Bugui drew near to one of the caskets and carefully examined it while mumbling a few words and tapping his fingers.
The sound of a stone piece being moved rang out.
Elation flashed across Hu Bugui’s eyes as he shouted, “Come here quick, the lid of this casket can be opened!”
“Haha, precious treasures, I’m coming for you!” The silly dog instantly sprang over.
Although Ye Qingyu retained some doubts regarding these caskets, he was yet unable to figure them out clearly and so thought he might as well go over.
Hu Bugui gently placed Nan Tieyi down and leaned against a stone pillar before excitedly rubbing his hands and then using both hands to give the casket a forceful push on the side.
A dull thud, heavy like no other, was heard.
To the side, Ye Qingyu suddenly looked surprised as a gap opened.
A smell of blood!
Yet another rich and intense smell of blood rushed out.
“Let me take a look at what treasure it is! Haha, move out of the way, the treasure’s mine. Anyone who wants to snatch it from me shall die… Huh? This is… poohpoohpooh… another corpse!” The silly dog drew near blusteringly but then jumped back in disgust by the next moment.
“What? A corpse?!” Surprised, Hu Bugui hurriedly stretched his body and checked.
Indeed, a corpse which was soaked in blood was placed within the casket. Based on the corpse’s state and that of its residual yuan qi, this expert had not been dead for long. Moreover, his armor was of a contemporary style, and hence, he was likely to have recently entered the palace and was placed in the casket by someone after he died.
“This doesn’t make sense. How can it be a recently-died body?”
Seeming somewhat dissatisfied, Hu Bugui pushed open the lids of the other six caskets in one go.
“Look quick, are there treasures?”
These black rock casket lids were heavy like no other, such that even someone of such immense physical cultivation as Hu Bugui began to pant after successively pushing seven of them open.
“A corpse… a corpse… and another corpse… Pooh! I get it, the treasures in here must’ve already been taken away by others, who then stuffed these corpses in. This is way too evil!” Looking resentful, the silly dog bared its teeth and brandished its paws.
To the side, Ye Qingyu still felt somewhat strange.
He walked up to the side of every casket and carefully examined them.
He could see that the edges of every lid had signs of being pried before, indicating that they had probably been opened by people not too long ago. The owners of the bodies placed in the caskets consisted of humans and foreign races, and their strengths ranged from the pinnacle Immortal Step realm to the low-level Great Saint realm. Like the corpses on the ground in the previous palace, they had died only recently and were probably killed during the same battle before being moved here by some people. Perhaps the caskets had indeed contained secret treasures, but, as Ye Qingyu wondered, why did the looters subsequently spend a great deal of effort to shift the corpses here?
Confounded, he arrived beside the last casket, which was in [Dubhe’s] position among the formation.
This… this casket is empty!
Ye Qingyu’s heart turned chilly.
This is way too strange.
Since those people had deliberately placed corpses in these caskets, why is only the [Dubhe] casket corpseless?
Just as he was scratching his head, the million-year-old soul’s voice suddenly rang out once more.
“Don’t look at or touch those corpses any further. Place the lids back like they were before.” There was a hint of seriousness in the voice.
“Yes.” Ye Qingyu nodded and agreed.
Seeing as the soul did not seem keen on explaining things, he felt that it was best not to ask any more questions despite his curiosity. He simply urged Hu Bugui and the silly dog not to touch those corpses as he closed the lids one by one.
When the lid of the [Alkaid] casket had also been placed back, the million-year-old soul’s voice was heard again. “Tell me what direction the handle of the Big Dipper is pointing toward now.”
The handle consisted of three stars, namely [Alioth], [Mizar], and [Alkaid].
After taking a look, Ye Qingyu noted that the direction the three corresponding caskets were pointing toward was roughly the east, and so he inwardly replied, “Senior, it’s the east.”
“Oh, that’s fortunate… There’s nothing left in here, let’s proceed on.” The million-year-old soul transmitted.
What does the direction of the handle mean?
Ye Qingyu became slightly more curious than before.