Emperor Coiling Dragon's words actually resonated with a lot of people. Emperor Shura had some fame in Veluriyam Capital, but no one other than his supporters felt much goodwill towards him.
Emperor Shura's subordinates were extremely domineering. For example, the late Majestic Clan had committed many crimes in Veluriyam Capital and rode roughshod over the general populace. The Shura Guard was highly disliked by the people as well.
In comparison, Sacred Peafowl Mountain's reputation was infinity better than Shura Retreat's. Emperor Peafowl's individual charisma was one reason, but the Peafowl Guard of Sacred Peafowl Mountain was also beloved. At the very least, they almost never interfered with worldly conflicts unless exceptional circumstances were involved.
Frankly, there weren't actually many willing to see Emperor Shura on the throne. If they had to pick one reason, it would be because the great emperor never made any contributions to the people. Nearly all of his fame had come from the power struggles within Veluriyam Capital's own four walls.
There were some who claimed that Emperor Shura was selfish, while others who said that Emperor Peafowl was so high up the totem pole that Emperor Shura was never given an opportunity to prove himself. Whatever the reason, the fact remained that Emperor Shura hadn't done anything for the people of Veluriyam Capital. It might be a little excessive to say that he was a ruler who couldn't subdue his people with either virtue or strength, but it wouldn't be a false statement either.
Compared to the other great emperors, his martial strength was indeed slightly ahead of them. However, his victory wasn't certain if his opponent was Emperor Petalpluck, the second great emperor of Veluriyam Capital. The two great emperors never really clashed against one another because Emperor Petalpluck was innately indifferent about fame or gain.
Of course, if Emperor Peafowl was still around, no one would even consider Emperor Shura as a viable candidate. But everyone in Veluriyam Capital felt worried after the rumors of Emperor Peafowl's demise were spread. Emperor Shura seized upon this to make a play for power. Although he was utterly incomparable to Emperor Peafowl, the same couldn't be said when his opponent was young lord Zhen.
As the representative of the young generation of Veluriyam Capital, young lord Zhen was quite beloved by the people. Although he had only just risen to fame, everyone could see what he done for Veluriyam Capital. Excluding all other achievements, his victory over Pill King Ji Lang alone was enough to win everyone's respect and admiration. It was a massive achievement that Emperor Shura failed to accomplish despite three thousand years.
Young lord Zhen had also passed the nine Veluriyam Obelisks after entering the Veluriyam Pagoda later on. After that, he'd travelled to Pillfire City and taken their pill dao scene by the storm in the Bounty Arena. Finally, he unwittingly defeated Pill King Ji Lang again by solving the crisis of the Moon God Sect.
Every bit of detail pointed towards young lord Zhen being a real, top class genius in both pill dao and martial dao. If a genius like this was allowed to develop and inherit Emperor Peafowl's seat, no one doubted that he could stand equal to or even surpass the great emperor.
Emperor Peafowl had made many outstanding contributions to Veluriyam Capital in the past three thousand years. He'd also clashed against some of the first rank sects of the Upper Eight Regions. The great emperor's beyond powerful might allowed him to firmly occupy the position of strength and mightily defend the Veluriyam Capital when it was challenged time and time again.
In reality however, Veluriyam Capital had always been inferior compared to Pillfire City. The two were located at the poles of the Upper Eight Regions, and they'd never engaged each other in any large scale martial conflicts. However, the two factions had clashed against each other many times in terms of pill dao. As the biggest pill dao faction of southern Upper Eight Regions, Veluriyam Capital had great influence in its own territory and surrounding regions.
But their influence had been on the decline for the past couple thousand years. Although Veluriyam Capital could still influence the regions around it, when it came to pill dao, the factions further away from them would rather seek out Pillfire City even if the former was closer.
Veluriyam Capital was fine in most aspects, but Emperor Peafowl was unable to make any progress in terms of pill dao no matter how many countermeasures he employed to combat this trend.
In terms of pill dao, the gap between Veluriyam Capital and Pillfire City had never stopped increasing. Emperor Peafowl had always been troubled by this and he'd tried many things, such as cultivating a group of pill kings in Sacred Peafowl Mountain. He had also established Vermillion Bird Avenue with the express purpose of nurturing pill dao factions and encouraging other factions to come and contribute to the development of pill dao.Although these measures had caused a pill dao craze for a time, Veluriyam Capital's roots were ultimately too shallow. Moreover, an exceptionally brilliant genius hadn't appeared in Veluriyam Capital until recently. Jiang Chen's appearance was a powerful ray of light cutting right through the infinite darkness that had enshrouded Veluriyam Capital. He also injected an unprecedented amount of life to Veluriyam Capital's pill dao.
The battle for the Longevity Pill was especially important. In the name of Pill King Zhen, Jiang Chen had defeated Pill King Ji Lang of Pillfire City and created a milestone in Veluriyam Capital history.
After that battle, Veluriyam Capital's pill dao scene grew more lively than before. They weren't losing to Pillfire City at every turn either. That was why young lord Zhen was practically an idol to the people of Veluriyam Capital, second only to Emperor Peafowl. Some people even thought that young lord Zhen would surpass Emperor Peafowl and become the number one idol.
Emperor Coiling Dragon's words won a tidal wave of applause from the crowd.
To Emperor Vastsea though, the claps sounded so unpleasant that he had to yell, "Coiling Dragon, everyone knows that you're a former subordinate of Sacred Peafowl Mountain! It would be stranger still if you didn't try to whitewash Sacred Peafowl Mountain's image. But no matter what you say, you cannot change the fact that young lord Zhen is still far inferior to Daoist Shura!"
Emperor Coiling Dragon sneered. "How so?"
Emperor Vastsea snorted disdainfully. "How is Emperor Shura inferior to a boy who's still wet behind the ears? In terms martial strength? His prestige? Or his experience?"
"Hahaha…" Emperor Coiling Dragon couldn't help but laugh loudly. "Oh Vastsea, I see that you're declining over time instead of improving. Martial strength? Aren't you ashamed of comparing a thirty year old genius to a three thousand year old great emperor? As for prestige, I truly don't believe that Emperor Shura is more popular than young lord Zhen right now. As for experience, why make the futile comparison between Shura Retreat and Sacred Peafowl Mountain?"
"We are comparing Daoist Shura and young lord Zhen right now! Don't try to change the subject!"
"Hah, are you telling me that Emperor Shura plans to rule Veluriyam Capital himself? Doesn't he need Shura Retreat's aid?" Emperor Coiling Dragon countered sneeringly.
Although Emperor Vastsea knew that Emperor Coiling Dragon's words were all sophistry, he actually couldn't retort against the latest statement.
"Alright, enough. There will never be a conclusion if you two keep arguing like this. This relates to Veluriyam Capital, so of course the people will be the ones to decide their ruler. Let us all who are present decide the future of Veluriyam Capital." Emperor Petalpluck finally broke his silence.
The second great emperor didn't involve himself in such matters, but he wasn't without influence and persuasion.
Emperor Vastsea agreed loudly. "Daoist Petalpluck is right! This relates to Veluriyam Capital, so the people of Veluriyam Capital will be the ones who decide their ruler. They will tell us if Daoist Shura is the most suitable candidate!"
Emperor Vastsea spoke in a way that hinted at closeness between him and Emperor Petalpluck, as if the latter was on Emperor Shura's side.
Emperor Coiling Dragon and Emperor Void shot Emperor Petalpluck a meaningful glance, but the calm, natural smile on the second great emperor's face didn't fade away. He didn't care that the two emperors were glaring at him viciously.
"What do you think, Daoist Mountaincrush?" From the side, Emperor Skysplitter suddenly asked.
He wanted to stay neutral until the end, so he was slightly displeased when he heard Emperor Skysplitter's question. A moment of thought later, he finally responded, "In that case, let us hold an election. Whoever has the majority vote wins."
Since most of the great emperors agreed that they should hold an election with the vassals as voters, Emperor Coiling Dragon and Emperor Void could no longer go against the tide. When they shot Jiang Chen a helpless glance, the young man smiled. "Since this is everyone's wish, then we shall have an election. It is a fair way to choose the next ruler of Veluriyam Capital."
Jiang Chen looked at the vassals below him with a gentle look. "Everyone, I'm going to say this again. All the rumors you hear about Emperor Peafowl is false. I guarantee that it is only a matter of time before Emperor Peafowl returns to us. You have nothing to worry about!"
Even now, Jiang Chen didn't believe that Emperor Peafowl was dead. No matter how confident Emperor Shura and his gang might be, he refused to believe that someone as great as Emperor Peafowl would die with a whimper like this.
Emperor Vastsea snorted coldly. "Young lord Zhen, maybe you should keep your mouth shut since the vassals will be voting later. Are you trying to win some sympathy votes?"
Jiang Chen sneered. "If that's the case, don't you think you should shut up as well? This doesn't have anything to do with you, unless you're planning to participate as a candidate?"
His words weren't excessive, but Emperor Vastsea's face turned completely red when he heard this. Emperor Coiling Dragon laughed loudly in response. "Well said! You're so involved that an outsider would mistake you as a candidate, Vastsea!"
Emperor Vastsea's complexion didn't look good. It was an incredibly embarrassing moment for him. Emperor Shura chose this moment to speak up. "Daoist Vast is my brother. His will represents mine too."
Emperor Coiling Dragon shrugged. "He still doesn't have the right to tell young lord Zhen to shut up even if represents you, does he? That was a complete disregard of the hierarchy just now. Are we throwing away all the rules of Veluriyam Capital just because Emperor Peafowl was gone for several months? Are we at a point where Sacred Peafowl Mountain can be humiliated anytime you wish?"
Emperor Coiling Dragon was blatantly trying to draw sympathy votes for Sacred Peafowl Mountain.
Emperor Shura said coldly. "Speaking of the hierarchy, you've just ascended recently, haven't you? Did that factor into your actions just now when you were criticizing me?"
"I'm just telling the truth as it is. Or are you saying that you can't even handle the truth right now? 'Brother', you really need to broaden your mind a little. Back when Emperor Peafowl was still around, he could handle anything thrown at him."
Emperor Shura nearly exploded when he heard this.