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Chapter 4

Liu Shuang made up her mind and felt a sense of relief and ease.

After getting ready, she searched everywhere but could not find Yan Chaosheng. She asked the ghost cultivators in the main hall, and they replied, “We do not know the demon lord’s whereabouts.”

Determined to get an answer, she turned and ran towards Xiangze Hall. Since she had already broken in once and her husband hadn’t sent her to the water prison, this knowledge emboldened her.

Four strong rhinoceros demons left by Yan Chaosheng followed her, keeping a respectful distance, allowing her to run all the way to the edge of Bone Forest.

As she was about to enter, she seemed to hit a thick barrier and bounce back.

One of the rhinoceros demons caught her by the collar and said, “Be careful, madam.”

After transforming, the rhinoceros demons retained their distinctive features, each of them as large as a small mountain.

Each one could easily take on two of her.

Liu Shuang rubbed her forehead and looked at the barrier in front of her. It hadn’t been there last night but had appeared out of nowhere this morning.

She glanced at her four guards and gestured for them to break the barrier.

“Forgive us, madam,” one of the rhinoceros demons said.

“We cannot break it. First, we do not dare trespass in the forbidden area, and second, we lack the strength to break this barrier.”

She bit her lip.

“Go fetch Lord Su Lun.”

Once Liu Shuang made up her mind, she wouldn’t avoid the issue. If the others couldn’t do it, surely Su Lun, Yan Chaosheng’s confidant, could.

Soon, Su Lun arrived, fanning himself. He greeted her with a bow and a smile and said, “Madam.”

“Lord Su Lun, can you help me break this barrier?”

Su Lun looked at the barrier outside the Bone Forest and lengthened his tone, “Ah, madam, you are making things difficult for me. This is the demon lord’s barrier; my humble powers cannot break it.”

“You’re so clever; surely you can find a way. If anything goes wrong and my husband blames someone, I will take full responsibility and won’t implicate you.”

Su Lun chuckled. “You jest, madam. I am not afraid of being implicated.”

He stroked his chin, his eyes glinting. “Madam, why are you so eager to trespass into the forbidden area?”

Liu Shuang pressed her lips together and stayed silent. This was a matter between her and Yan Chaosheng, and it wasn’t for Su Lun to hear.

“Do you want to know who lives inside?” Su Lun raised an eyebrow.

“There’s no need for such trouble or to risk angering the demon lord. If you want to know, you can ask me directly.”

“You know?”

“Of course.”

Liu Shuang asked, “Will you tell me, Lord Su Lun?”

“I cannot refuse a request from you. The demon lord had a difficult youth before becoming a ruler. People tend to flatter those in power and trample those who are down. Those who helped the demon lord back then are rare and precious to him. The one he brought back this time is a descendant of one of his benefactors. The benefactor’s descendant had a hard life, and the demon lord, who is not unfeeling, wouldn’t neglect her. Due to her special status and being hunted by the immortal realm, living outside would be inconvenient. So, the demon lord placed her in Xiangze Hall and ordered her to be cared for. Her soul is damaged and weak, so she’s recuperating inside.”

Liu Shuang was stunned.

“You don’t believe me?” Su Lun, smiling, took out a colorful bead from his waist. “This is a truth stone. It can prove that I am not lying.”

The truth stone glowed green.

If it had turned red, it would indicate a lie. Bright green meant every word was true.

So that’s how it was. Liu Shuang felt embarrassed under Su Lun’s playful gaze, realizing she had misunderstood Yan Chaosheng again.

But she couldn’t be blamed entirely… After all, no one dared discuss the demon lord’s past. This was the first time she had heard anyone speak openly about it, learning that he once had a benefactor of great significance.

Realizing this, Liu Shuang felt deeply ashamed. No wonder her husband was so angry yesterday; her willfulness had almost endangered the benefactor’s descendant.

Su Lun winked at her.

“Are you still upset, madam? Do you still need me to find a way to break the barrier?”

Liu Shuang quickly shook her head. She didn’t want to harm anyone.

Su Lun chuckled.

“Then go back and rest. The demon lord’s birthday is approaching. Accompany him happily, alright?”

Liu Shuang smiled, her eyes curving like crescent moons. “Thank you, Lord Su Lun.”

Su Lun folded his fan and bowed. “Farewell, madam.”

Remembering the celestial silk she had yet to finish, and with Yan Chaosheng’s birthday just five days away, Liu Shuang felt a bit anxious. She bid Su Lun goodbye and returned to her chamber.

Su Lun watched her leave, tapping his fan in his palm.

Behind him, a ghostly voice murmured, “Lord Su Lun, your words are indeed skillful, guiding madam’s thoughts so effectively.”

“Not at all; I spoke the truth, every word.”

Su Lun tapped the barrier lightly with his fan, wondering if the demon lord would understand before it was too late.

Continuing to treat such an innocent girl this way, even he would feel bad eventually.

Having learned the truth from Su Lun, Liu Shuang began preparing a birthday gift for Yan Chaosheng.

She was sitting on a swing, threading silver wire through a headband, when a loud roar echoed through the sky. The blood-red sky was torn apart, streaked with lightning.

Her swing shook violently, throwing her to the ground.

Chang Huan, alarmed, forgot to walk over and instantly floated to her side, helping her up.

“Madam, are you hurt?”

Liu Shuang shook her head. “I’m fine, but… what’s happening? Lightning in the ghost realm?”

Looking up at the sky, she saw purple and red streaks crisscrossing the sky, as if it were about to shatter. In all her years in the ghost realm, she had never seen anything like this.

Chang Huan frowned. “Someone is attacking the ghost realm.”

Attacking the ghost realm? Liu Shuang was shocked.

Yan Chaosheng was always wild and untamed; people feared him and dared not provoke him, fearing he might one day decide to attack.

Yet now someone dared to strike, causing such chaos.

“Don’t worry, madam. With the demon lord here, they wouldn’t dare go too far.”

“Let’s go see.”

Liu Shuang was worried about him. She put down her work and walked to the entrance of the ghost realm, at the foot of Mount Qingcang.

The tremors were stronger here, as if the gates of the ghost realm might be breached. She thought of the person who had previously injured Yan Chaosheng.

Turning her head, she saw Yan Chaosheng in a silver battle robe.

His expression was cold, and behind him followed the ghost realm’s general, Fu Heng, and other commanders, all heading out. Seeing her, he frowned slightly.

Another thunderous boom nearly knocked her over.

Yan Chaosheng caught her by the waist, steadying her, and curtly ordered, “Go back.”

“Husband, is it the person who hurt you before? Are you in danger?”

Yan Chaosheng laughed arrogantly, with centuries-old confidence.

“Him? He managed to stab my shoulder, but I broke eight of his bones.”

“Is there a way to avoid getting hurt and still breaking five of his bones?”

He raised an eyebrow and laughed.

“There is a way. I’ll go out and make him cry.”

Liu Shuang rarely saw him like this, so full of fighting spirit. Even his silver spear shimmered brilliantly, emitting a resonant hum. Where his hand touched the spear, dark flames flickered.

The ghost cultivators of the Ghost Realm were completely calm, showing no fear. With their lord present, any challenger was doomed.

Her husband was indeed a natural warrior, as the rumors said. Despite his tall, elegant figure and silver spear, he didn’t resemble the sinister, venomous creature that the rumors about his serpent lineage suggested.

In her eyes, he was incredibly handsome.

She smiled and said, “Husband, be careful.”

Not wanting to burden him, she wobbled her way back to her chamber amidst the tremors of the Ghost Realm. Suddenly, a hand appeared at her waist, and in the next moment, she was hoisted up.

Startled, Liu Shuang looked at the ground in shock. “Husband?”

He said, “I’ll take a moment to get you back first.”

Yan Chaosheng set her down on the swing in the courtyard, noticing her wide-eyed, incredulous, yet obedient look.

He laughed heartily.

“Wait for me. I’ll go strip a few scales off him and bring them back for you to play with.”

His figure turned into a dark streak of light and disappeared.

Liu Shuang touched her chest, feeling her heart race like a wild deer. She recalled the biographies that criticized Yan Chaosheng for his love of killing and his brutality.

But perhaps the dizziness from the shaking ground had muddled her brain. For the first time, she thought that a love of fighting and brutality… didn’t seem so bad.

He was clearly very, very impressive.

After Yan Chaosheng left, the Ghost Realm returned to normal. Liu Shuang summoned Chang Huan.

“Do you know who is attacking the Ghost Realm?”

Changhuan hesitated before replying, “It is the Heavenly Lord Feng Fuming, madam.”

“Feng Fuming…” Liu Shuang was familiar with the name. Grandpa Tree often mentioned this ruler of the immortal realm. Back then, he was not yet the heavenly lord but the crown prince, and Grandpa Tree praised him as young, promising, and handsome.

No wonder her husband said he would bring back some scales for her. Feng Fuming had the bloodline of the ancient dragon, and his true form was likely that of a dragon.

For the past few decades, Yan Chaosheng has often been at war with him.

This heavenly lord, born into nobility and with extraordinary roots, had taken nearly a century to establish a peace treaty with Yan Chaosheng. But now, why was the heavenly lord attacking the Ghost Realm?

“Don’t worry, madam. Feng Fuming is no match for the demon lord.”

Liu Shuang nodded, looking in the direction of Xiangze Hall. Was it because of the benefactor’s descendant that the heavenly lord declared war on the Ghost Realm? Her husband was right; they were not ungrateful people and must protect this guest well.

The battles between immortal beings and demons often lasted a long time. The sky occasionally streaked with heart-stopping flashes, brief moments for them but days for Liu Shuang, who was accustomed to mortal time.

The demon lord’s birthday was the next day. Chang Huan lowered the curtains. “Madam, would you like to get a good night’s sleep? You haven’t closed your eyes for five days since the demon lord went to battle.”

“I’m fine.”

Even doing nothing in the Ghost Realm, her spiritual energy would slowly drain away.

She wanted to wait for Yan Chaosheng. He promised to bring her scales. If she slept and he got hurt, she wouldn’t know.

Finally, Chang Huan excitedly announced, “Madam, I hear the demon lord has defeated the immortal army, and Chiyuan is flying back to the Ghost Realm.”

Liu Shuang’s fatigue vanished. The headband she had been working on was finally finished, different from previous gifts. Her husband was often away at war, and past gifts included layers of protective charms for his safety.

This time, it was a long-lasting token of affection.

Golden charms softly drifted into the headband. Her cultivation was not high, and creating a ribbon infused with blessings had almost exhausted her extra spiritual energy.

Liu Shuang raised her hand, noticing that her skin was no longer as smooth and white as before, more like a wilting little immortal plant deprived of water. But she wasn’t sad; instead, she felt happy. When Yan Chaosheng received this gift, he would understand her feelings.

As Chang Huan had mentioned, they could peacefully have a little prince in the future. The offspring of the demon lord would surely be both handsome and powerful.

She rubbed her cheeks and carefully placed the ribbon in a brocade box, then hugged the box and went to Qingcang Mountain to meet Yan Chaosheng.

In front of Qingcang Mountain, a ghost crow cawed, and suddenly the long bells rang out, the ghost gate wide open.

Liu Shuang looked up to see countless emissaries from the demon realm flooding into the ghost gate.

It was already daylight without her realizing it, and today was Yan Chaosheng’s birthday. Under the dark clouds, clad in silver armor and holding a long spear, he sat on Chiyuan with a lazy smile, exuding an arrogant and disdainful aura.

“Congratulations to the demon lord on his victorious return!”

The myriad ghosts and demons shouted in unison, bowing together.

Liu Shuang’s purple gauze dress, decorated with budding flowers, fluttered in the wind, the purple veil trailing on the ground.

She stood at the mountain gate, like a speck of dust merging into a surging torrent. Among the demons and ghost cultivators, many inherited the bloodlines of ancient demons and possessed great power. They would rather fight to the death than bow to anyone.

Yet they all kneeled before him, willingly submitting to his rule.

He descended with Chiyuan.

Holding the brocade box, Liu Shuang wondered if she could truly spend her life with someone so powerful and unparalleled.

She looked down at her fingers, which had turned pale and almost transparent after using her spiritual energy. Every day spent with him in the Ghost Realm quietly drained her lifespan. If she ever lost Yan Chaosheng’s care and protection, she would end up, as Grandpa Tree said, completely devoured by the Ghost Realm, leaving no trace behind.

Liu Shuang smiled gently, feeling neither regret nor sadness. She couldn’t take the two rulers of the realms back to Canglan Lake to live, so she would stay by his side, year after year, for as long as she could.


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