Qin Mu's eyes opened wide in disbelief, and his heart trembled. His jade pendant had actually been crafted by Earth Count?
His jade pendant should have belonged to Qin Family and he had worn it ever since he was young, so how could it have been crafted by Earth Count?
What was the relationship between them?
Was it because he had truly done so much evil that Earth Count sealed him with the jade pendant?
However, he should have only been a baby, so how could he have committed evil?
He didn't have any memory of that. And besides, in Eternal Peace and Supreme Emperor Heaven, who didn't know that Cult Master Qin was a noble, benevolent, and a broad-minded character? So how could he have committed evil before?
"The seal should have become loose." The magma Earth Count continued to flip through the book. "There was once a few gods and devils who tried to break the seal, but they didn't succeed; however, the seal seems to have gotten loose and almost released you. It's fine, I'll reinforce it later."
His browsing speed was extremely fast, and he quickly read through all of the evils Qin Mu had committed. When he came to the last page, he said, "In the ominous land of Supreme Emperor Heaven, Son of Qin family Qin Fengqing used Soul Guide to disrupt Youdu, seizing forty-eight thousand souls by force, injuring the messenger of death..."
"Using Soul Guide to bring away the forty-eight thousand souls was indeed my doing, but injuring the messenger of death wasn't. It was Seven Kills Star Sovereign Wei Liao who did it, so find him if you want."
The magma Earth Count turned his head to look at Elder Messenger of Death and asked, "Was it Seven Kills Star Sovereign Wei Liao who injured the messenger of death?"
"There was Seven Kills Star Sovereign Wei Liao's name in Life and Death Book, but after he died and his soul scattered twenty thousand years ago, it was removed, so he is no longer in Youdu's jurisdiction. The reason why the forty-eight thousand souls escaped though was still mainly because of Qin Fengqing helping Seven Kills Star Sovereign retrieve his soul and patch it back together. Because of that, the debt of injuring the messenger of death has to be recorded in Qin Fengqing's book. After all, he's still alive and his name is still in the Life and Death Book," the Elder Messenger of Death who was a clone of Benevolent Saintly King Equal to Heaven replied.
The magma Earth Count looked at Qin Mu and said, "Do you accept for this debt to be recorded under your name?"
"I don't!" Qin Mu said instantly.
"Record it under his name," the magma Earth Count told Elder Messenger of Death. "Settle it in the future."
Qin Mu's face instantly turned black. "If you're going to record it under my name, why even bother asking me?" However, when Earth Count said to settle the debt in the future, hope lit up in his heart.
His words meant that Earth Count really only wanted to talk to him about the cause and effect of his actions and not seek reparations.
The magma Earth Count closed the thick book and lowered his head to look at the tiny Qin Mu below him. "Why did you disrupt the order of Youdu and summoned those souls into the world of the living? Did you remember something? Are there images of Youdu flashing in your mind?"
Qin Mu stared blankly for a moment, then shook his head. "When I was sent... exiled out of Youdu, I should have only been one or two months old, right? How could I have images of Youdu flashing in my mind? As for summoning the souls in the ominous land, I had no choice but to do so."
He told them about the reason why he had executed Soul Guide, then stood still, waiting for his punishment quietly.
The magma Earth Count kept staring at him. After a moment, he asked. "Are there really no images flashing in your mind? You don't recall anything?"
Qin Mu shook his head. "What could I recall?" he asked with a smile.
"If you didn't recall anything, how did you become proficient in Youdu language?" The magma Earth Count kept staring at him like he could see through him. In a while, he said in a slower voice, "Proficiency in Youdu language allows you to cultivate the paths, skills, and divine arts of Youdu, to open the door to the divine treasures of the devil path. Aren't you curious about how you were able to open the divine treasures of the devil path?"
"Devils are descendants of the devil gods in Youdu, so they can open up their divine treasures of the devil path. Aren't you curious about how you are also able to do so?" Elder Messenger of Death asked from beside him.
"I am!" Qin Mu looked at him with curiosity. "How was I able to open up the divine treasures of the devil path as well as divine treasures of the god path?"
"That's because you are the descendant of Carefree Village and also a lifeform born in Youdu..."
Just as Elder Messenger of Death said that, the magma Earth Count intercepted him. "He doesn't need to know all of that, and we don't need to explain it to him. He was summoned to be questioned, not to worm out facts from us."
That Elder Messenger of Death came to realization and said with a smile, "He managed to worm a fact out of me. This brat's expression is simply abominable. He made me fall for his tricks."
Qin Mu blushed and said with embarrassment, "My curiosity was piqued by Official Sovereign, so I just asked that, I wasn't trying to worm facts out from the two of you. I'm just a small child that turned eighteen..."
Elder Messenger of Deaths shook his head. "Really can't see that he's lying."
The magma Earth Count nodded and said, "This is an acquired slyness. He learned it from the living people. It wasn't part of his nature, but training changed that."
"In that case, how much of what he said is true and how much is fake?"
The magma Earth Count knew Qin Mu inside out, so he said, "When he talked about the cause of bringing back the souls to the ominous land, every word was true. After that, he might have seemed to have said a lot, but he didn't say anything at all. Instead, he was trying to ask and worm facts out of us."
Elder Messenger of Death thought it over in detail and realized that it was truly so.
"My nature isn't like this, I was just taught some bad stuff by the elders in my village, which is why I turned out this way. I really don't have any flashbacks of Youdu."
"This sentence is true," the magma Earth Count said. "The seal is still there, so it should be just the memory regarding language that has awoken. He doesn't recall anything of what he had experienced."
With sweat pouring down his forehead, Qin Mu probed, "I have killed some people in the past. Will that make my sins heavier?"
"This sentence is fake. He's fishing for facts," the magma Earth Count said. "However, what he wants to ask isn't a secret, so you may reply to him."
"All kinds of evil committed before death will be viewed as equal after death. Youdu is not a place of judgment, but where death belongs. Unless people are guilty of terrible crimes or disrupting the order of Youdu, they won't be eaten by Earth Count."
Qin Mu let out a sigh of relief, but Elder Messenger of Death wasn't finished yet.
"Those who are guilty of terrible crimes are plagued by sin and have to be burned by karma fire which is incredibly painful. Earth Count eats them to absorb their sins and karma fire. People like you who disrupt the order of Youdu and don't let dead people remain dead are also eaten by Earth Count."
Qin Mu became nervous again. Elder Messenger of Death looked at his face, then revealed a satisfied expression. "However, Youdu doesn't dabble in the affairs of the living world. You're still alive, so we can't deal with you and need to wait until you die."
"Official Sovereign, you got tricked by his expression again,' said the magma Earth Count.
Stunned, Elder Messenger of Death cried out, "His original intention was to ask me if he would be punished right now? It's truly impossible to guard against hi—"
The magma Earth Count nodded, then his gaze landed on Qin Mu's face once again. He said, "Don't speak first. Let me ask him."
Qin Mu stood silent.
The magma Earth Count looked at his obedient expression and pondered over it. He then decided not to say anything and just raised his finger gently. The jade pendant on Qin Mu's neck slowly floated up and came to rest onto his palm.
The magma Earth Count pluck down one of the long horns on his head and stabbed it into the jade pendant. The entire long horn sunk inside and vanished without a trace.
Rings of fire spread out from the jade pendant before gradually dispersing.
The jade pendant flew up and went back to rest around Qin Mu's neck. He hid it beneath his shirt, keeping it close to himself.
The magma Earth Count waved his hand and said, "I wanted to see the seal of the jade pendant. Since it's been stabilized, send him back. We'll talk about everything after he dies."
Elder Messenger of Death hurriedly said, "After he dies, won't he still—"
The magma Earth Count shot him a glance, and Earth Count suddenly remembered being ordered not to talk. He hurriedly kept the rest of the sentence to himself.
The body of magma Earth Count swirled, and his voice came from the magma. "Don't let anyone touch your jade pendant! Official Sovereign, when you send him off, don't talk to him!"
"Earth Count, I want to meet my mother, is that possible?" Qin Mu asked in a hurry.
The magma Earth Count vanished.
Qin Mu stood with a blank look on his face. After a moment, he said, "I just want to meet my mother. I've never seen her before... Official Sovereign, do you know how she looks like?"
Elder Messenger of Death pondered over it and nodded.
Qin Mu looked at him with eyes filled with anticipation. Elder Messenger of Death was truly troubled, and he hesitated for a moment. "Earth Count has ordered me to not speak to you."
"Official Sovereign, is my mother still alive?" he asked with excitement.
The messenger of death hesitated for a moment. Qin Mu's expression really gripped at his heart, so he could only nod at him. "Stop asking things; I'm very troubled. I have already gone against Earth Count's orders by talking to you. Go, it's not yet daytime in Supreme Emperor Heaven. I'll send you back to the world of the living."
Qin Mu could only follow him and board the small boat. He was silent on the way.
The small boat sailed leisurely. They left the broken plane on Earth Count's horns and went into the darkness.
The true body of Earth Count was incomparably huge. Qin Mu didn't know how tall or large it was, but the small boat required a lot of time to leave the two Nine Bends Yellow Springs.
Elder Messenger of Death kept looking around. From time to time, he would raise the lantern to shine it around them. In a bit, he threw a yellow talisman to Qin Mu and said, "The fellows looking for you will not give up this chance. Stick this yellow talisman on your face, and no gods or devils will be able to see your face. Whatever they glimpse would be fake, just like how I look like now."
Qin Mu stuck the yellow talisman onto his face and didn't move.
"Why haven't you made any holes yet?" Elder Messenger of Death asked curiously.
Dispirited, Qin Mu said resentfully, "Not interested."
"Little child throwing a tantrum."
At that moment, the small boat stopped.
Elder Messenger of Death quickly stood up and raised his lantern while saying indifferently. "Are you still not giving up?"
"May Official Sovereign give us a way out!" a voice said from the darkness, but it was a cacophony of many having fused into one. "We just need his face and identity in the world of the living! We don't want his life now!"
"You guys are meddling too much. Retreat quickly, or if my true body descends, you guys can forget about even being ghosts!" Elder Messenger of Death said coldly.
On the boat, Qin Mu secretly took out the Life and Death Book he had taken from Shaman God Kui and shone it into the darkness. His body couldn't help shuddering when a name appeared on the page.
"Hehehehe, you still gave the game away..." The weird voice from the darkness moved away rapidly.
Elder Messenger of Death turned his head back, and his gaze landed on the Life and Death Book in Qin Mu's hands. He sighed and said, "Now you know his true identity, but he also knows your true identity. What you used is the Life and Death Book of the celestial heavens, and there aren't many of them around. He will find you soon. You... take care of yourself!"
For a moment, Qin Mu was stunned. Only then did he realize what the game had been.
Qin Mu's eyes opened wide in disbelief, and his heart trembled. His jade pendant had actually been crafted by Earth Count?