Liena and the golden-robbed youth tried to move their heads out of instinct to see the person talking to them but they were frozen, not able to move any parts of their bodies aside from their eyes and mouth.
"Who are you...?" Liena wasn't scared but she naturally acted cautiously, her voice turning soft and kind. There shouldn't be anyone in this world who could match her in strength but the old man behind her was able to freeze her movements as if it was nothing. Liena would be lying if she said she was not anxious at all.
The old man chuckled as he asked her back, "Hehe, does the council tell you anything?"
When Liena heard the question, her heart sank, shock quickly filling her expression. 'Impossible...' She couldn't believe the man but when she analysed the situation, it was really the most likely option as no other than the Council members could reign such power.
When she confirmed it in her mind, the anxiousness swiftly turned into panic. Wouldn't the presence of the Council inside the lower Realm mean that they were after her? She knew about the rule of not interfering with humans and they had to abide by it as well. The only reason they would stop her would be to punish her for something.
Knowing all that, Liena felt like crying but somehow partially collected herself, replying while stuttering, "S-sir... I-if this servant did anything wrong... I b-beg for forgiveness..." She knew that their lives were at stakes there so if she could, Liena would drop to her knees and apologize for anything she did wrong. Everyone knew in her circle knew one shouldn't mess with those responsible for your reincarnation and afterlife.
To her surprise, she didn't hear the reply she expected, stating her sins and instead another male voice joined them as he called out, blaming the old man, "Gosh, look what you did to this little beauty. You scared her so much she can't even speak properly."
It turned out the two men that appeared out of nowhere were the duo of an old and the middle-aged men who were protecting Xuefeng from the shadows for a while already.
Seeing the kind approach of his partner, the old man rolled his eyes as he justified himself, "Oh come on, she would figure out anyway. She is from the Heaven Realm after all. Maybe she is panicking because she has something on her conscience? She must have been a bad little girl recently."
Liena could almost feel the penetrating gaze of the old man behind her and quickly denied, "N-no no I would never. I have been a very good little girl..." She was a grown-up woman but she didn't mind to call herself a little girl in front of the members of the Council.
Suddenly, Liena and the youth regained the power in their body and she felt the middle-aged man voice next to her ear as he leaned on her shoulder, saying warmly, "Ah, don't listen to him. We don't have any bad intentions. I wouldn't let anything happen to such a beauty like you."
Liena saw the somewhat handsome but mature face as she turned her head to the side and answered with a shy smile, "Thank you, Sir... Is there anything I can help then?" Knowing that they were not after them, she calmed down, feeling more relaxed but the cautiousness didn't disappear yet.
The middle-aged man's eyes brightened when he saw her shy expression and he blinked at her, his hunting mode turning on as he said with a flirtatious smile, "I got actually lost in your beautiful eyes and I need you to help me find my way to your heart."
Smack. The old man couldn't help but slap his forehead upon hearing his words as he already knew how his partner's hunt will end. He already saw many failed attempts of his and this one was just another one to the collection.
Just as the old man expected, Liena smiled embarrassedly, not knowing how to reply and finally said while bowing slightly, "Sir, this little girl wouldn't dare... Sir is so smart and should definitely find a way out, right...?"
"Haha, of course! I wouldn't find I way out? I am not scared of any challenge." The middle-aged man laughed as he naturally accepted the compliment she gave him and only after a second did he realised that he was actually rejected.
Fortunately for Liena, the old man pulled his partner away for small talk, trying to talk some sense into him and the golden-robbed youth used that moment to warn her, seeing that Xuefeng was getting closer to Pio with each moment, "Milady, Pio is in danger..."
Liena looked at the direction of the battlefield and saw Xuefeng almost reaching Pio with the flaming sword inside of his hand, prepared to land the last strike. This time she didn't hesitate and asked kindly, "Sir, would it be alright if I excuse myself for a second? I would like to save one junior of mine before he is in mortal danger."
The old man patted his partner on the shoulder as they returned back to the conversation and said seriously, "Actually, we came to talk with that matter in our minds." Find authorized novels in Webnovel，faster updates, better experience，Please click for visiting.
"Oh! I will try to help with anything If I can," Liena quickly exclaimed and expressed her eagerness to help. They didn't have much time left but she, of course, couldn't just ignore them and leave.
Without wasting time for explanation, the old man went straight into the nub of the problem and stated while looking all serious, "We don't want you to interfere with that battle, so let Xuefeng decide what he wants to do."
That was naturally a shock for Liena, knowing that it would probably mean another sixteen years of waiting for them as Pio had high chances of dying in the very near future. Just as she was about to try and convince them to reconsider this, explaining how important it was for her, the old man assured her, "We know your organization's mission so don't worry, we will secure the Fate Spirit and gift it to Xuefeng to distribute it to someone else. Nothing much will change, just the holder of the Fate Spirit will."
Naturally, Liena couldn't be happier about such turn of events as everything she was worried about was settled just like that and she immediately bowed, accepting it wholeheartedly, "Thank you, Sir. I'm really happy with such a solution. I will not interfere then." Pio as a person wasn't what she was interested in but she needed his ability. If that were to be taken care of, nothing else mattered.
She was also glad that the Council didn't meddle in her mission. If they knew what she was planning to do and they didn't disagree, they technically allowed her to continue and open the Fate Kingdom which was technically the Council's old home.
"That's good. I guess we-" The old man nodded, knowing they secured what they wanted but before he could finish his goodbyes, his partner added, already fine after his rejection, "Xuefeng and his close ones are untouchable. Make sure not to get on his bad side."
"Untouchable?" This was the first time she was met with someone of such status so she asked instinctively, wanting him to hopefully elaborate. For her, there was always someone stronger so no one was untouchable.
Seeing her gentle smile, the middle-aged man quickly gave in as he advised for the last time, "Let's say he has someone above always watching over him. It would not be smart to offend that person. Even we wouldn't dare to offend her."
A drop of sweat appeared in Liena's forehead, knowing she almost brought a catastrophe onto herself with her actions and she quickly thanked for the warning with an embarrassed smile, "Thank you, Sir. I knew I could count on Sir."
Even though she saw the middle-aged man wanting to reply, she wasn't blessed by other words from him as the two suddenly disappeared, the old man only leaving the last sentence, "We will be always watching, so don't disappoint us."
With them gone, the sky was left only for them but Liena didn't move anywhere, looking as if she was thinking of what to do next with her plans. The youth already knew what they will do but still asked to confirm his thoughts, "Milady? What should we do?"
She touched her lips as she looked at Pio, thinking that she wasted her power for nothing and sighed, deciding to follow what was already planned for them, knowing they didn't have any other choice, "Let's just play with what cards we have. We will follow what the two men suggested." The two men were probably watching over Xuefeng so there was nothing else she could do.
The appearance of the duo did not go completely unnoticed. They were spotted by both Drakos and Little Ming as soon as they appeared. Drakos didn't know them so he commented out loud, 'Huh? What is the Council doing here?'
'Haha, so good. One strike and he is done for. I actually didn't expect-" Xuefeng was in the midst of praising Drakos for his strength when he was disturbed by his question and asked, 'Council?' As he never heard of it before, it got him interested.
Just as Drakos wanted to explain, Little Ming preceded him and called out sweetly, 'They are on our side. Xuefeng, focus on killing Pio now. That Fate Organization won't stop you. I took care of them.'
It would be a lie if Xuefeng said he wasn't surprised as he quickly followed up with questions, 'Really? How did you do it?'
Little Ming giggled as she explained, 'Hihi, let's say I have a friend whom I sent a message not long ago, asking for help in restricting them. Unfortunately, it can be only considered one-off favour as they are not supposed to help in such matters at all. Are you going to use it or not? Pio will soon run away if we waste time talking.'
She felt bad for lying but she couldn't tell Xuefeng that he had two bodyguards who would save him in most life and death situations. If he knew, his growth would definitely change. He wouldn't worry when going out to battle, thinking that he will be saved anyway which she didn't want to happen.
'Ah, you have to thank them then.' Xuefeng was a bit disappointed that it was only this time and he would have to bother with them later on but he couldn't complain about what he got.
Finally reaching Pio who was still struggling to stand up, Xuefeng didn't hesitate to plunge his sword straight into Pio's chest, pinning him to the ground. It was the first time that they heard Pio's scream, "Aaaaagh!"
Drakos was contemplating about Little Ming's words, knowing that she definitely didn't send any signal to anyone but when he felt the fresh Fate Qi to absorb, he put that aside for now, focusing on their prey.
"Young Master!" The Cultivators around them cheered the moment Xuefeng's sword sealed Pio's demise but Xuefeng wasn't bothered by them, focused on Pio's face as he twisted with his sword, wanting to see his painful expression.
"How does it feel to be burned alive? Do you like it? This is what Tianshi had to go through!" Xuefeng yelled into his face as he suddenly increased the flames, burning his heart from the inside. Pio's hand tried to grab the sword to maybe pull it out of his chest but he only burned his hands, scowling in pain.
As Pio was knocked back to his first form, he could technically use his Star Shaper ability but because Drakos kept sucking his Fate Qi off him, he couldn't use any of it. The flames this time were doing the real damage to his body.
His body was burning alive as Pio screamed continuously but Xuefeng did not hold back with his tortures. Pio had a strong will to live but even he couldn't withstand this much. As his face finally got covered by the black flames, they didn't hear his screams anymore.
Just to be sure he was dead, Xuefeng pulled out the sword from his heart and swung it across his neck, separating his head from the rest of his burned body. He expected to get his promised relief after finally venting his anger on him but he didn't feel anything. He couldn't go back in time and save Tianshi from the pains she already had to go through.
Just as the body and the head burned, a sudden bright light shot into the shy from Pio's head, looking like a little star. It wanted to escape as far as it cool but then for some reason it halted, calming down before slowly falling down towards Xuefeng. He reached out with his hand to catch the light and it landed gently on top of his palm, feeling kind of warm.
It turned out it was the Star-shaped crystal that was situated inside of Pio's hands. Just as he turned it around to look at it, he heard a sad female voice coming from the crystal, 'You are not suitable... Your life was filled with too much happiness... The light and darkness are not balanced in your body... Find me another host...'