Chapter 1957: News You Cannot Spread
To make the Ocean Emperor’s expression so solemn, it was easy to guess how sensitive ‘that person’s’ status was.
Before coming here, Ye Zichen had learned a little bit about the situation from Xue Yang’s true body, but there were far too many specific details he remained unaware of. Xue Yang simply told him to return to the Sea of Innocence, and that his avatar would tell him the truth of the matter then.
As such, Ye Zichen traveled day and night, rushing to the Sea of Innocence without detours or even stopping to rest.
This was for no other reason than that he wanted to learn more about “him.”
“Earlier, you told me a little about that person, but you weren’t willing to risk revealing it to outsiders, which is why you had me come here to talk to you directly.” Ye Zichen’s expression was solemn. “That person is… a demon, right?”
The Ocean Emperor’s avatar didn’t respond directly. Instead, he lifted his teacup and took a sip.
“It’s only natural that my true body wasn’t in a position to tell you more about him. If others found out about this, there would undoubtedly be a commotion, and the Sea of Innocence might very well be deemed traitors to the god race. Of course he couldn’t tell much of anything out there.”
“The Sea of Innocence would be accused of rebelling against the gods?” Ye Zichen arched his brow. His friends were stunned too; they almost dared not believe what the Ocean Emperor’s avatar was saying.
The Sea of Innocence represented the Northern Divine Mountain, and the Divine Mountains had stood since the primordial era. As the Northern Divine Mountain’s Holy Land, the Sea of Innocence had always been one of the God Realm’s leaders, and it maintained order over the mountain’s other factions. Under their rule, everything ran smoothly and orderly.
Every generation’s Ocean Emperor had been completely loyal to its God Emperor.
They’d never shown any signs of rebelling, or even of considering rebellion. It was only now that Zhou Wu was on the throne that this changed. Zhou Wu was heartless, resulting in other leaders rising up against him. If Zhou Wu hadn’t taken things too far, however, the emperors of the other Divine Mountains would never have severed ties with the God Emperor.
But now the Ocean Emperor’s avatar was saying that if this secret came to light, the Sea of Innocence might be accused of treason.
If Ye Zichen’s guess was right, the person they were discussing had been there since the time of Xue Yang’s predecessor.
“Why do you say that, Ocean Emperor?” asked Ye Zichen in confusion.
“Actually, this is a secret even within the Xue Family. Throughout the entire clan, the only ones who truly know who that person is are me and my true body, as well as the Grand Elder. He’s a member of my father’s generation.” The Ocean Emperor sighed and shook his head. “I’d hoped to take this secret to the grave with me. As you can see, I have three daughters, but no male heirs.”
Ye Zichen nodded. Indeed, Ocean Emperor Xue Yang had no sons. The current Sea of Innocence had princesses, but no prince.
“There’s no need to even consider Beibei. Her personality is unsuited for the position of emperor. As for Momo, she’s always been a heroic free spirit. She doesn’t like being tied down. It wouldn’t be good to pass my seat onto her too. Besides, as you know, Momo is my daughter, but she’s also the daughter of the Jade Pool Palace Master. The palace master doesn’t have sons either, so she needs Momo to succeed her position later. If things go on like this, only Honghong can take on the responsibility of succeeding my position. In that case, I’ll have no choice but to tell her.”
Ye Zichen nodded.
“You’ve got quite the relationship with Honghong.”
Ye Zichen couldn’t help but blush.
He and Honghong had revealed their relationship back when he opened his celestial eye. At the time, he’d been unconscious. He’d only learned the details of what had transpired later; Pu Jingwan had told him all about it.
The great emperors present, however, had all seen the amorous nature of their relationship.
He’d been looking for a good opportunity to bring this up, only to reveal it to everyone, and in such an embarrassing way.
But Ye Zichen still didn’t quite understand: earlier, Xue Honghong had given him ten years, saying that if he didn’t make it in time, her father would marry her off to someone else.
“Ocean Emperor, did you recently decide to make Honghong your successor? Or have you always planned it that way?”
“Why do you ask?” asked Xue Yang’s avatar.
Ye Zichen laughed, then told the full tale of how he and Honghong had met, including the exact words of the private promise she’d made.
The Ocean Emperor’s avatar nodded. “At the time, I really was considering marrying her off. That, too, was for the sake of stabilizing the Sea of Innocence’s position on the Northern Divine Mountain. However, the moment she awakened her bloodline, that idea faded to the back of my mind. And indeed: I only recently started considering her as my successor.”
When he said this, the Ocean Emperor didn’t seem the slightest bit uncomfortable or embarrassing. Using your children to form marriage alliances was as normal as could be for emperors like them.
“So that’s how it is.” Ye Zichen nodded.
“But don’t change the subject. Never mind Honghong’s bloodline awakening… If for no other reason than that you’re the Emperor Star, there’s no reason me or my main body would interfere with your relationship,” said the Ocean Emperor. His words were flat and emotionless, but his words suggested the importance he attached to a marriage between parties of equal status.
The Emperor Star!
If Xue Honghong’s bloodline hadn’t awakened, Ye Zichen’s status as the Emperor Star would have been enough to marry the Ocean Emperor’s daughter. But if Ye Zichen wasn’t, Xue Yang would think twice about it.
Basically, the Ocean Emperor was trying to say that despite everything, they weren’t exempt from following custom.
“But that’s not what we’re here to discuss.” Xue Yang changed the topic, returning to the reason he’d calle Ye Zichen here. “If you go ask Honghong about ‘him’, she’s sure to tell you. In that case, I decided to go ahead and tell you myself. Otherwise, even if you were the Emperor Star, I might very well keep this under wraps for the sake of protecting our reputation.”
The Ocean Emperor had just explained the rationale behind his decision. His thoughts weren’t unreasonable; although Ye Zichen and Xue Honghong hadn’t actually spent much time together, Xue Yang was confident that if Ye Zichen went and asked his daughter, she’d tell him everything.
Perhaps she’d hesitate, but in the end, she’d definitely spill the beans.
That was just how women were in the face of love; there was no way she’d keep this from the man she loved.
It was better to tell Ye Zichen himself than to let his daughter do it for him. This way, he could control how much he revealed and how much he left out.
“In that case, please enlighten me.” Ye Zichen cupped his fist respectfully.
This information was extremely important to Ye Zichen.
In response, the Ocean Emperor’s avatar merely lifted his cup and drained it. It seemed that revealing this secret put him under considerable pressure. Otherwise, he, the Sea of Innocence’s Ocean Emperor, wouldn’t have gone to such lengths.
Xue Yang poured himself another cup, then another, draining three in total. This action put Ye Zichen’s nerves on edge. He couldn’t help but wonder, Just what shocking secret is the Ocean Emperor about to reveal?
“Ocean Emperor.” Eventually, Ye Zichen couldn’t take it anymore.
Finally, the Ocean Emperor gestured for him to stay calm, then set his cup down. He sighed. “That’s right, it’s just as you think. The person imprisoned in the third layer of the Xue Family Dungeons is indeed…. The prior Demon Emperor!”