"Not only is he not taking Nie Tian's fragmentary star marks, but he's even apologizing to him?!" Dong Wangling muttered, his lifeless eyes gradually filling with vigor again.
Wu Ji's eyes also lit up instantly.
"What?!" Ling Dong from the Heaven Palace Sect exclaimed, standing among the crowd. Then, he turned to Zhao Luofeng and asked, "What the hell is the Divine Flame Sect doing? Those marks contain the profound secrets of the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace. I can't believe they're not taking them!"
Zhao Luofeng observed Yue Yanxi's every move and noticed that the Lei brothers had been in fear and trepidation.
Soon, he came to a realization. With a sigh, he said, "It appears that the Divine Flame Sect is apprehensive about the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace. Perhaps Nie Tian has already obtained some sort of status within the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace after getting those three marks, even though he might not know it yet.
"That expert from the Divine Flame Sect must know about that, so he doesn't dare to do anything to Nie Tian.
"It's said that the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace is the most ancient and powerful Qi warrior sect throughout the starry river. I'm afraid, compared to it, the Divine Flame Sect is not even worth mentioning.
"That's why he's showing so much respect to Nie Tian."
Ling Dong's expression flickered as he chimed in, "Can it be that the sects in the Domain of Heaven's Boundaries have some sort of connection to the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace?"
"Very likely," Zhao Luofeng said.
The others also entered heated discussions with each other upon hearing Yue Yanxi's words.
A clamor took over the central square of Desolate City, and there was no signs of it ending anytime soon.
By now, everyone had realized that, judging from Yue Yanxi's humble attitude towards Nie Tian, Nie Tian would probably be able to survive this incident, unlike what they had expected.
After a moment of hesitation, Nie Tian shot a concerned gaze at Nie Donghai and said, "So my grandfather and..."
Yue Yanxi laughed. "I brought them here personally. Of course, they'll be safe from now on." Then, he jerked his head towards Nie Donghai, Nie Qian, and Dong Li. "I've already apologized to you. I hope you can forgive us for being negligent."
Nie Donghai hastily said, "It's alright. We're fine."
Nie Qian also expressed that everything was forgiven since no one was badly hurt.
Dong Li, however, sensed the subtle change in the situation from Yue Yanxi's attitude towards Nie Tian. With a long face, she said, "Ji Qingyun from the Heaven Expanse Sect seized me in the street with a band of Poison Sect and Spirit God Sect disciples. Not only did he drag me to that volcano, but he even slapped me on the face."
"Ji Qingyun!" Dong Wangling thundered.
At this moment, Ji Qingyun was standing among the crowd, beside Lei Ze and Yu Wei.
Upon hearing Dong Li's accusation, he hastily jerked his head towards Lei Zhenyu, hoping he could put in a few words in his favor.
Di Ruyun also rapidly turned to look at Lei Zhenyu with a begging look in his eyes.
Just as he was about to say something, he noticed the icy stare Lei Tianqi, the clanmaster of the Lei Clan, was giving him.
Therefore, he shut his mouth.
A lightning bolt that looked like a cyan snake suddenly flew out of Lei Tianqi's cuff towards Ji Qingyun.
Ji Qingyun's face turn pale with fright as he saw the lightning snake. Just as he was about to justify his actions, he experienced violent rumbles and turbulences in his mind.
At this moment, his sea of consciousness started to crumble, along with all of his memories.
Immediately afterwards, the cyan lightning bolt drilled into him through his nostrils. Buzzing sounds kept coming from his shaking body, which was soon wreathed in tiny lightning bolts.
Moments later, he collapsed to the ground.
Then, Dong Li raised her hand and pointed at Yu Wei. "She, Yu Wei from the Heaven Expanse Sect, cursed me and Nie Tian's aunt. She called us 'bitches'."
Nie Tian shot a cold look at Yu Wei, killing intent brooding in his heart.
Scared out of her mind, Yu Wei screamed miserably, "Please! No! Sectmaster, help me!"
Di Ruyun, the sectmaster of the Heaven Expanse Sect, sagged his head in silence, as if he had become deaf, not showing the slightest intention of begging Lei Tianqi to spare her life.
Apparently, he was well-aware that, now that things had come to this point, someone had to take the blame and shoulder the consequences.
In a casual manner, Lei Tianqi spit one word, "Die!"
As soon as he did, a bolt of lightning struck down on Yu Wei from the clouded heavens, with might that could annihilate souls.
Yu Wei's eyes were filled with tiny lightning bolts as she fell to the ground and died.
"Also..." Dong Li didn't finish her words on a second thought.
She realized that since Ji Qingyun and Yu Wei were from the Heaven Expanse Sect, not the Thunder Mountain Sect, the Lei brothers wouldn't hesitate in the slightest before ending their lives.
However, Lei Ze was from the Thunder Mountain Sect, and shared the same ancestors with the Lei Clan. If she were to accuse him of something, it would be hard to say what the Lei brothers would do.
She snuck a glance at Lei Tianhong, hesitating over what to do.
Both Ji Qingyun and Yu Wei were foot soldiers. It was Lei Tianhong who had issued those orders.
After Lei Tianqi had left to build the teleportation portals, Lei Tianhong had been put in charge. It was him who had made the decision to seize Nie Donghai, Nie Qian, and her immediately after Zhao Shanling's appearance.
The lightning chains around their necks were also his doing.
However, Lei Tianhong was a core member of the Lei Clan, and the Lei Clan had served the Divine Flame Sect for many years. Even though he had misunderstood the Divine Flame Sect's intentions, they had done everything for the Divine Flame Sect.
Dong Li was only hesitant because she didn't know how far Yue Yanxi would go to atone for what had been done to the three of them, in order to win Nie Tian's trust.
At this moment, Lei Tianhong suddenly stepped over and bowed respectfully towards Nie Donghai, Nie Qian, and Dong Li.
Afterwards, he turned to Yue Yanxi and said with a bitter expression, "My older brother left to build teleportation portals in the starry river and left me in charge. After a man named Zhao Shanling came to seek trouble with us, I took the liberty of seizing Nie Tian's family and using them to force him to give himself up. The fault was mine. For this, the Lei Clan will be willing to make amends for the losses that have been caused."
Lei Tianqi stepped forward and chimed in, "Grand elder, we did make a big mistake, but we didn't cause irredeemable harm to Nie Tian, although his family suffered from a few fleshly injuries. Our clan will right our wrongs and solve the matter in a way that Nie Tian would be happy with. Do you think that'll suffice?"
Eyes narrowed, Yue Yanxi smiled at Nie Tian and asked, "What do you think?"
Just as Nie Tian was about to answer, Hua Mu gave a cold smile as he held out his hand towards Lei Zhenyu and demanded, "I suppose you should return the things I gave you to buy Nie Tian's life."
The Lei brothers jerked their heads towards Lei Zhenyu at the same time. "What did you take from them?" Lei Tianhong asked, frowning.
Lei Zhenyu gave a wry smile, and without any delay, handed the ring of holding, which held the Heaven-shattering Crystal Cannon and three Spirit Channeling grade treasures, to Hua Mu.
Hua Mu grabbed the ring of holding. After a brief examination of its contents, he nodded. "Good. They're all here."
After pondering for some time, Lei Tianqi said, "Nie Tian, Xia Yi, Zhang Zhongchi, and Lu Minhuang are all dead. The Flame God Sect, the Spirit God Sect, and the Poison Sect will be gone as well. After that, the Realm of Dark Underworld and the Realm of Black Marsh will be in an unclaimed state. I suppose you can take over their collections of treasures, as well as the dominion of those two realms."
Many experts present gasped in shock upon hearing these words.
Nie Tian's expression also flickered.
The Flame God Sect, the Spirit God Sect, and the Poison Sect had stood in the Domain of the Falling Stars for many years. Each of them had accumulated copious amounts of valuables, and those two realms were rich in all sorts of resources.
Obviously, Lei Tianqi intended to use the them to make up for what had been done to Nie Tian and his loved ones.
With a faint smile, Yue Yanxi from the Divine Flame Sect said, "You're mistaken, Brother Lei. Since Nie Tian has obtained the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace's legacies, and he's from the Domain of the Falling Stars, that means the entire Domain of the Falling Stars is meant for Nie Tian. Apparently, there are things you don't know, but I do."
Lei Tianqi gasped with astonishment. "What do you mean, grand elder?"
Yue Yanxi let out a sigh. "The fact that the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace opened Heaven Gates in the Domain of the Falling Stars means that the Domain of the Falling Stars was meant for their successor. The thought of taking the Domain of the Falling Stars hasn't even crossed my mind, since I know that a successor has been chosen here."
"We'll never violate the rules established by the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace."
Zhao Luofeng's face turned pale with shock as he exclaimed, "What?! The entire Domain of the Falling Stars is meant for the successor of the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace? Does that mean we'll have to depend on Nie Tian's whims from now on?"
"This can't be right!" Ling Dong found it utterly unrealistic and unacceptable.
Lei Tianqi went blank for a while before snapping to reality and saying, "I see now, grand elder. Our clan will make other arrangements to amend for our faults."
Yue Yanxi nodded and said, "Go take care of the remaining evil of the Flame God Sect, the Spirit God Sect, and the Poison Sect first. In the meantime, I'll have a talk with Nie Tian."
"I'm on it!" Lei Tianqi replied.