Chapter 1343 - When All the Stars Die Out
Yun Che died under the starlight. He died under the gaze of all the Star Guards and Star Gods, he had been broken apart and shredded before Jasmine’s and Caizhi’s very eyes.
Caizhi’s weeping stopped and she simply stared dumbly into space, her face and starry eyes had lost all color. Her frail and delicate body slowly sank to the ground inside that barrier as she knelt to the floor in a daze.
His death had been determined the moment he forcefully used “Other Shore Asura”. Because, it had burned up his life, profound veins, soul, mind, will… All of this had been exchanged for that power of despair. Furthermore, following his death, Hong’er and He Ling whose lives and souls were tied to him had also died as well.
Yun Che had died but he had also created a nightmare for the Star God Realm, one that would never ever be able to be wiped away, while inflicting a gigantic loss on them. His death was also unable to cleanse away the wrath and fear the Star God Emperor felt. He had long ago stopped caring about the ceremony and he stood up inside the barrier that surrounded him while roaring, “Destroy his body! You’re not allowed to leave a strand of hair or drop of blood behind!!”
“...Yes!” All the Star Guards were stunned but they swiftly gave a response as many beams of starlight started to gather once more. But before they could even make their move, scarlet flames started to burn on Yun Che’s broken and shattered body at this very moment, as if the divine blood in his body was releasing their final divine glow after he had died.
The flames swiftly linked together while they burned on his broken body, creating a small sea of flames. Within this sea of flames, the broken parts of Yun Che’s body swiftly burned up as they disappeared piece by piece, until all of it had been completely burned to ash and returned to nothingness.
Just as the Star God Emperor had wished, not even a single strand of hair or drop of blood remained. Not even a single bit of Yun Che’s corpse still remained, it had well and truly disappeared.
Sighs rang out in the hearts of various people. Some felt as if a heavy burden had rolled off their backs, some felt incessant regret and pity, but most of them felt complex feelings that were hard to define.
What had died was not only Yun Che, because the person who had died was someone who had possessed the power of a Creation God, someone who was able to combine both the Phoenix and Golden Crow flames, someone who could release a Manifest God, someone who could induce a nine stage heavenly tribulation, someone who could control heavenly law tribulation lightning, someone who could explosively raise his strength to that of a Divine Master’s despite being a Divine King. This was an extraordinary divine genius, the likes of which had never been seen in the annals of history and the likes of which would likely never be seen ever again.
“My king, since Yun Che is dead, then it’s about time for us to start today’s ceremony. There is nothing more important than this matter for my king and for the Star God Realm right now. Once the ceremony has been completed, my king will attain unsurpassed divine power, so the souls of the Thirty-Seventh Elder and all the Star Guards who have died will definitely be extremely satisfied with the result,” Heavenly Origin Star God Tumi spoke up to remind the Star God Emperor.
“...” The Star God Emperor closed his eyes and it took a several breaths before the rise and fall of his chest truly went back to normal. He gave a faint nod of his head before speaking in a deep voice, “Forget about everything that just happened, focus your minds and your hearts, let us proceed with the ceremony!”
All the Star Gods and elders complied with those words and closed their eyes as they sought to calm down the ripples that spread through their hearts.
Caizhi’s face was a ghastly white and she felt a cold sensation spread throughout her body. Even when she had been coldly stared at by everyone when she was a child, she had never felt so cold before. She looked towards Jasmine… The last bit of warmth and support in her life, only to discover that she was still lost in her stupor.
Caizhi called out to Jasmine, but Jasmine did not respond in any way whatsoever. She looked straight ahead, but there was nothing reflected in those starry eyes. Instead, they were losing color bit by bit.
“Little girl, I don’t really understand what you just said, but you have been sleeping inside the Sky Poison Pearl for so long, so can you tell me your name?”
She still remembered how aloof and disdainful she was to Yun Che at that time. She was the Heavenly Slaughter Star God and he was just a lowly creature from the lower realms and even his profound veins had been crippled. Just based on status and level alone, merely favoring him with a gaze or speaking a single word to him was already bestowing a blessing upon him.
“Jasmine… The jasmine flower is adorable and delicate, it exudes a strong fragrance and its flawless and pure white. It is a name that really suits you.”
“Flawless and pure white? Heh… I am Jasmine, a jasmine that has been dyed blood-red by a countless amount of fresh blood!”
“The third condition is to kneel down, kowtow to me and take me as your master!”
“Why? You’re not willing to?”
Given her status, taking Yun Che as a disciple was simply the greatest loss of dignity in the world. Furthermore, the first reaction of the Yun Che at that time was actually unwillingness, he even forcefully tried to show off his so-called lofty and unyielding character, a character that he presumptively thought was as hard and unyielding as metal.
“How… old are you this year?”
“Thirteen years old!”
“Thirteen… years… old!? You’re even younger than me, so it’s not appropriate for you to be my master, right…”
“Fine, I can take you as my master, but I won’t kowtow to you. I, Yun Che, can kneel towards my seniors, kneel towards my benefactors, eh… Well I guess I can kneel towards my wife as well, but kneeling towards a little girl like you whom I’ve only known for a few days, I can’t do it!”
“That is the most basic dignity of being a man!”
“Hmph… That isn’t for you to decide!”
That day she had stepped on Yun Che’s head, her every word mocking him as she looked down on him from above, “Do you feel like your bones are very hard now, that you are really great? Without strength, you don’t even have the ability to refuse to kowtow to me! So what right do you have to act haughty in front of me? Without strength, your presumptive pride and dignity are nothing but a joke in front of the so-called strong!
“... Right now, do you have any questions you want to ask of me, your teacher?”
“I do… I want to ask, did your hair not manage to grow in time, or… are you naturally a white tiger?”
Jasmine’s expression finally changed. The corner of her lips lightly smoothed out and a shallow smile that was very small and very beautiful appeared on her face, a smile that Yun Che had not seen for many years already.
But he would no longer have the fortune to be graced by that smile.
For some odd reason, the world had become abnormally quiet and she could hear the sound of her heart beating with incomparable clarity.
“Idiot!! Idiot!! You sex fiend who is willing to disregard your very life for the sake of a woman!! Idiot!! If you die terribly one day, it will definitely be because of a woman!!”
“Aheheh… If… that woman was you, then I just might be perfectly willing to do so.”
“Heh! Save these kind of foolish words of yours and use them to coax those idiotic women!”
It seemed as if her heart was beating faster and faster, was beating more and more intensely.
“Jasmine, to reconstitute your body, that was the request you gave me the very first day we met, and it has also been your only request all this while…”
“Because I met you, it allowed a cripple like me to gain a new life and I was able to regain my dignity as well… Because of you, I could protect my grandfather and my little aunt from all harm and mistreatment… Because of you, I found out about my past and I was able to find my real parents… All of the power, status, dignity, and fame that I possess today is due to you. If not for that chance meeting with you, I might have died a dog’s death a long time ago... Even if I was still alive, I would possibly only be a wandering ghost that hovered on the edge of despair…”
“But in the end, I could not even help you realize… this one desire of yours.”
“Yun Che!! How much longer will you persist with this foolishness… If you are acting so desperately because you think that you need to repay my kindness for those reasons that you just listed out, then you can jolly well stop! Everything that I have done has been entirely for my own sake! I don’t need you to gamble your life over a mere Netherworld Udumbara Flower! Let’s not even talk about the fact that it’s impossible for you to currently succeed… Even if you do manage to obtain it, I won’t feel the least bit grateful. Rather, I’d only feel that your stupidity knows no bounds!!”
“Repay… your kindness? How could it just be… to repay your kindness… Jasmine, to me… How could you simply… just be a benefactor to me?”
“You are even… younger than me… Yet from such a young age… you could only… rely on on yourself… to live… I know just how… enormously painful… and sad… that kind of life is…”
“Even though you are… haughty… stubborn… foul-tempered… and you love to scold me… you have never allowed me… to pity you… but… I know that… you definitely desire freedom… more than anything else…”
“A master’s order cannot be disobeyed… But in my heart… you are not merely… my master…”
“You are also… my… Jasmine!!!!”
On that day, for the sake of a Netherworld Udumbara Flower that did not even have all of its petals, the roar that he had made as his soul was on the brink of collapse caused Yun Che’s figure to be firmly carved into every corner of her soul… Yet perhaps, he had long ago carved himself into her world. It was just that she had not yet noticed it.
Thump, thump, thump...
“I’m fine with being foolish, and I don’t care about courting death either. In comparison to meeting you, everything else is unimportant.”
“…Jasmine, I indeed… should not have presumed your thoughts, nor should I have presumed that you have missed me as much as I have you. But at least it can’t be denied that… I put in great effort and risked my life everyday during these three years in the God Realm in order to find you. In the end, I didn’t even hesitate to barge into the Conferred God Battle, so that you could hear my name. Even if you truly have utter disdain for me now, at the very least… let me get a glimpse of you. Allow me to tell you in person all the things I wanted to talk about with you, and…”
“Jasmine, from the first day that I met you in this place, I was able to detect that your body and heart were being held down by very heavy chains… Including the day that you chose to ruthlessly sever all ties to force me to leave, I am firmly convinced that it was not only for my own safety. If not, you clearly could have used many other methods which were far better than that… But don’t you worry, I won’t probe any further.”
“If it’s a burden that even you are having difficulty dealing with, then even if you told me, given my miniscule and insignificant strength right now, there is no way I could help you. Furthermore, it would only become another chain and burden to hold you down…”
“After I enter the Eternal Heaven Realm, I won’t allow myself any slackness or distraction. And three years from now, I will have grown to the point where you will be willing to tell me everything, so that I can break the chains that bind your body together with you. It would be best… if I could also protect you… and if I could do it forever.”
“Yun… Che… Why… did I… have to meet you…”
“It was probably so that you could marry Caizhi to me, haha...”
“Jasmine… I did not come to save you, I am a piece of trash, I can’t save you. The only thing I can do is to accompany you.”
“If… a… next life does… exist… will we… meet again…”
Yun Che, after we seperated in the Profound Sky Continent, because of me, you chased me all the way to the Eastern Divine Region, and then you chased me all the way to the Eternal Heaven God Realm. And because of those words I said, you put everything on the line in order to obtain first place in the Conferred God Battle. And once more because of me, you disregarded all the consequences and barged into the Star God Realm, just to die together with me...
You’re still that idiot, the greatest, most foolish, most incorrigible idiot I have ever seen in my entire life.
From when you first entered the God Realm and you were still a petty and nameless character, to when you first entered the divine way, and then to when your name shook the world, every single step of your progress was not because you wanted to see an even wider world or because you wanted scale ever greater heights. It was merely because you wanted to be able to track me down and get closer to me...
But as for myself, from start to finish, I was terrified and I tried to avoid you, thought of every possible method to push you away. Presuming that it was for your own good, presuming that it could save you, and save Caizhi...
Yet in the end, it harmed you, harmed Caizhi, harmed myself...
I was the one who harmed you… I was the one who harmed Caizhi… If I wasn’t so presumptuous and full of myself, if I could just copy just a little bit of your bravery...
Everything happened because of me...
Yun Che… I am not worthy of receiving such treatment from you...
Within the sea of Jasmine’s heart, it was as if many crystals and stars were shattering, dispersing a fast fading brilliance.
Yun Che had died. He had become scattered ashes and smoke before her very eyes, and in doing so, he had carried away the last warmth and color she had in her life… This had also obliterated all of her hesitation, all of her weakness, all of her attachment, all of her hope, all of her goodness...
The sound resonated inside Jasmine’s world… and it also resonated in the ears of everyone present.
All of the Star Gods and elders within the barrier, and the Star Guards outside the barrier, jerked their heads upwards at this moment as they dumbly stared at the sky.
For no reason whatsoever, the atmosphere abruptly became stifling and oppressive and it was as if there was giant heart that was pulsing intensely between heaven and earth, releasing a thumping noise that directly impacted one’s very soul.
“What is going on? What is that sound!?”
“Who… Who is it!?”
It rang louder and louder and it grew nearer and nearer. Gradually, it began to feel as if one’s own heart was being shaken.
This was the Star God City that was isolated by the Absolute Star Soul Barrier. Yun Che had only been able to barge inside because his body contained the Star God Blood that Jasmine had gifted to him, and that was already a huge mishap… So just what was going on with this oppressive and bizarre sound!?
There was not just the sound of a heart beating, there was also a mood of extreme disquiet that was birthed in the hearts of everyone, a disquiet that spread swiftly through their hearts like an epidemic.
The Star God Emperor and the rest of the Star Gods, who had just managed to settle their hearts a little, all looked up as they stared towards the origin of the sound with sunken brows. Moreover, their complexions were also swiftly and dramatically changing… Because even they could clearly sense that there was an extremely enormous sense of disquiet, a disquiet that was growing larger and larger with each passing moment.
“Big… Big Sister?” Caizhi looked towards Jasmine as she called out to her dispiritedly. Her body was stuck against Jasmine’s, so she could very clearly sense that the sound of the heartbeat that was so loud that the entire Star God City could hear it… was actually coming from Jasmine.
“Big Sister… Big Sister? AHHH!”
She shouted several times before suddenly letting out a cry of alarm.
Because she saw Jasmine’s eyes.
The pupils of her eyes were pitch-black and an incomparably terrifying emptiness appeared in them. There was no longer a single trace of their normal brilliance which was even more lustrous than the stars themselves...
They looked like an endlessly black night sky, a sky that had lost all of its stars.