Book 8, The Ten Thousand Kilometer Journey – Chapter 49, Saint-Level Dragonblood Warrior
The cold wind continued to blow.
The desolate wilderness had finally returned to its former calm. But compared to earlier, atop the wild plains, there were a number of corpses as well as pools of blood. The aftermath of the battle was easily visible. The ground was cracked open in many places, and there was that giant crater, with that deep hole in the center of it. At this moment, a black Shadowmouse slowly, wearily crawled out of that deep hole.
“Boss.” Bebe’s body was stained red, blood matting his fur.
Bebe was staring forward in concern. He saw that Linley was lying there, not moving at all. Although the Cherub, thanks to the influence of the Bloodviolet sword’s baleful aura, had seen its attack weakened, the force of its blow was still several times greater than that of the Two-Winged Angels.
Bebe scurried forward, arriving next to Linley.
“Boss, you okay?” Bebe mentally transmitted. Bebe was very worried. Right now, Linley’s chest had an astonishingly deep indentation, with over half of the scales on his chest shattered and fallen. Fresh blood had dyed Linley’s chest totally red, and Linley’s face was very pale. His eyes were closed.
Slowly, Linley opened his eyes, looking at Bebe.
“I’m fine. Bebe. Don’t move my body.” Linley’s voice rang out in Bebe’s mind.
Bebe nodded obediently, settling into a curl near Linley’s body.
“This time, I was wounded very badly.” Linley felt that his chest was wracking him with severe pain with each breath he took. Linley’s only option was to urge the Dragonblood battle-qi in his vessels to help repair some of the damage he had taken, in accordance with the method prescribed in the ‘Secret Dragonblood Manual’. As a Supreme Warrior, his recuperative abilities were quite formidable.
But this time, the injury really was very severe.
The Dragonblood battle-qi slowly flowed through each part of his body, as the unique energy of the Dragonblood in his veins slowly seeped into his blood vessels and heart. As for his chest, which had suffered the majority of the damage this time, after it drew some of the special energy from his Dragonblood, Linley could feel it slowly begin to recover. With each breath, Linley could feel his chest slowly changing.
“In terms of regenerative speed, amongst the Four Supreme Warriors, the Dragonblood Warriors should be inferior to the Violetflame Warriors and the Undying Warriors.” In a time like this, this thought suddenly crossed Linley’s mind.
The Violetflame Warriors possessed incredibly strong regenerative abilities, and even had that freakishly powerful Nirvana Rebirth ability.
Unless their bodies were entirely destroyed, given enough time, a Violetflame Warrior would be able to recover to their peak condition.
The sound of Linley’s breathing grew louder and louder, as his damaged chest continued to recuperate. At the same time, the black scales covering Linley’s body retracted, as did his spikes and his tail. In the blink of an eye, Linley returned to his normal human form. But despite now being in human form, Linley’s body was still covered in blood, and the injury to his chest was as severe as ever.
As time passed, the night began to deepen.
The cold wind blew drearily. The light of the moon was totally blocked by the clouds. But Linley and Bebe paid no heed to the weather at all.
“Boss, doing better?” Bebe’s beady little eyes stared unwaveringly at Linley.
“My internal injuries are more or less fixed. Only, three of my ribs are broken. Fortunately, they didn’t pierce into any other vital regions.” Linley revealed a smile towards Bebe. “However, it will take at least ten days or half a month for broken ribs to recover.” Normal people would need several months to heal a broken rib. Linley was only able to make this claim because of his confidence in his lineage as a Dragonblood Warrior.
“But if I were able to find a light-style or a water-style magus, I should be able to recover even more quickly.” Linley knew that certain types of magical healing could be extremely powerful.
When Linley had been imprisoned within the Radiant Temple, virtually every single bone in his body had been broken. But when he had been bathed in that holy light of the Radiant Sovereign, his body completely healed in the blink of an eye, and was restored to peak condition. This sort of astonishing recuperative ability was very formidable.
Linley continued to generate his Dragonblood battle-qi.
The Dragonblood battle-qi absorbed the elemental essence from nature, and it also absorbed the unique Dragonblood lineage in Linley’s veins. As it gradually strengthened, it nourished every part of Linley’s body. Linley’s internal injuries were now almost completely healed. The only tricky part remaining was his shattered ribs.
Linley’s eyebrows shot up, and he felt a hint of delight.
The Dragonblood battle-qi circulating throughout his body suddenly began to tremble, and the liquefied Dragonblood battle-qi in his dantian suddenly roiled about like the waves of the sea. Linley immediately guided all of the Dragonblood battle-qi in his veins into his lower dantian. Very soon…the density of Dragonblood battle-qi in his lower dantian reached its maximum peak.
A radiant smile blossomed on Linley’s face as he sensed the Dragonblood battle-qi in his dantian begin to transform.
Every single shred of battle-qi was changing. Changing in quality and nature.
“I’m finally beginning to break through.” Linley calmly waited. At first, only a small amount of Dragonblood battle-qi had been transformed, but as time went on, more and more transformed, and at a faster and faster rate. At the end, in the space of time it would take a person to breathe ten times, the remaining half of the battle-qi all transformed successfully.
Linley rose to his feet, dispersing the totally transformed Dragonblood battle-qi in his veins to every part of his body. Some of it was sent to his shattered ribs, assisting them to recover more rapidly.
“Boss?” Bebe looked at Linley with curiosity.
Linley hugged Bebe, lifting him into the air. Laughing, he said, “I’m fine. Let’s prepare to go home.”
At this time, Linley was extremely happy. Ever since he had reached the peak of the eighth rank, he had been waiting for this day. Although in the past month, Linley had the feeling that he could break through at any moment, that moment somehow just wouldn’t come. But now, while he had been healing his injuries, he had suddenly broken through.
The ninth rank!
From this day forward, Linley was a warrior of the ninth rank…but that was just his nominal level of power. In reality, after Dragonforming, Linley was already an early-stage Saint-level combatant. In terms of defense, speed, or power, he had dramatically grown.
“If I were to encounter that Four-Winged Angel again, just by using the adamantine heavy sword, I would be able to dispose of her.” Linley was very excited.
That was a brand new level of existence. Even the mighty Dawson Conglomerate desperately desired to have a Saint-level warrior amongst their ranks. The mighty Jacques clan was mighty, precisely because they had a single Saint-level combatant. This was their pride and the source of their arrogance. This was why they had the confidence and the ability to administer the O’Brien Empire’s Northwest Administrative Province in perpetuity.
An expert of the Saint-level.
Before a Saint-level combatant, even the Grand Dukes and Kings who administered and ruled over populations of millions or tens of millions meant nothing at all.
Before a Saint-level combatant, even an ancient clan that had existed for thousands of years would have to lower their noble heads.
Even the Radiant Church, the Cult of Shadows, and the Four Great Empires would deeply desire to pull Saint-level combatants into their orbit!
In the entire Yulan continent, aside from those three humans who stood at the peak of the world (the High Priest, the War God, and the King of Killers), or the two deity-level Kings of magical beasts, Saint-level combatants were the cream of the crop. Upon entering the Saint-level, one would immediately possess an unlimited life. The King of Killers, Cesar, had lived for five thousand years as a Saint-level, had he not?
Linley raised his head to the sky.
Suddenly, flakes of snow began to drift down from the heavens, melting when they touched Linley’s face.
“I still remember those two Saint-level experts doing battle in Wushan township when I was a child. At that time, Saint-level combatants were unfathomably high entities, far beyond the likes of me. Even that magus of the eighth rank who rode on a Velocidragon was an expert. But now?” A sense of pride swelled up in Linley’s heart.
At last, he had accomplished something.
Most likely, if the current Linley were to encounter the Stellar Sword Saint, Dillon, he would be able to defeat him.
“Ancestors of the Baruch clan, keep watching me. I will restore the fame and the legend of the Dragonblood Warriors, and spread it across the continent.” Linley felt a sense of absolute self-confidence.
Linley was only twenty six years old, this year. But upon Dragonforming, he was a Saint-level warrior.
“There will come a day when I reach an even higher peak of power.” A hint of a smile was on Linley’s face.
Linley knew exactly how powerful he was. Although he was only an early-stage Saint-level after Dragonforming, the hardest part of advancing from the early-stage to the peak-stage of the Saint-level was not in accumulating battle-qi. Rather, it was in gaining a deeper level of understanding and insight regarding the world. But Linley’s level of understanding was already at that of a peak-stage Saint-level.
In truth, sometimes two people who had the same amount of battle-qi and similarly deep levels of understanding would still have major differences in their power.
This was because different people would walk different paths to wisdom, even if they were in the same realm.
For example, another combatant might also be training in the Laws of the Earth, but after the ‘impose’ level, he might have taken a totally different route. After all, the Laws of the Earth were as boundless and infinite as the oceans, and there were many paths one could take in understanding them. Different paths would result in different results. Linley’s path was akin to the throbbing pulse of the earth itself, using those strange vibrational attacks. It was totally different to the usual types of force and power based attacks used within the Yulan continent.
Just as Linley was preparing to head back to the Cloudpeaks Village, suddenly….
“Linley, right?” A voice rang out from not too far behind him.
Linley’s heart jumped in fright. He hadn’t noticed that there was someone nearby. He immediately turned his head to look, only to see a black-robed, skinny old man with a few flecks of white in his hair, standing in mid-air. The old man was staring down at Linley from mid-air.
Linley immediately understood. “McKenzie?”
“Right.” This person was indeed McKenzie.
Linley had just suffered a serious wound, and had been focusing on healing himself. He had totally forgotten that this major battle he had just fought against those six Angels definitely would not escape the attention of the nearby Saint-level combatant, McKenzie, who was residing in the provincial capital.
Linley carefully looked at McKenzie. McKenzie looked as though he were in his early fifties. Although his hair had a few streaks of white, there wasn’t a single wrinkle on his face. He stood in mid-air with his waist ramrod straight, with an immovable aura that made Linley feel secretly amazed. This McKenzie was definitely more powerful than that Four-Winged Cherub.
“How long have you been here?” Linley asked.
McKenzie laughed. “Not too long. When I arrived, I managed to witness you and the Four-Winged Cherub exchanging your final blows to each other and injuring each other.”
Linley raised an eyebrow.
This McKenzie should have been watching the entire time as Linley had been healing himself. Since he didn’t act against Linley when Linley was injured, he probably didn’t have any ill intentions towards Linley.
“I am very surprised that you actually managed to kill a Cherub.” McKenzie sighed in appreciation. “Although the Four-Winged Angels are only temporarily able to use their full strength, for you to be able to kill one without dying is quite amazing. Dragonblood Warriors…the legendary Dragonblood Warriors really are powerful. Linley, after Dragonforming, you should be at the Saint-level, I believe. Only, given how difficult it was for you to kill a Cherub, you should only be an early-stage Saint-level warrior, right?”
Linley started, not knowing whether he should laugh or cry.
“This McKenzie…jeeze…” Linley was speechless. He thought to himself, “Only after I killed the Four-Winged Angel did I gain the ability to reach the Saint-level in Dragonform. This McKenzie actually thinks that I had already reached the Saint-level when I was fighting with the Cherub.”
“What, you haven’t reached the Saint-level?” McKenzie said disbelievingly.
Linley smiled. “I admit that after Dragonforming, I am indeed at the early-stage Saint-level.”
McKenzie laughed and nodded with satisfaction. “Haha, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a Saint-level combatant. I really am quite happy to see you today. How about this. Come with me to my residence for a time. That way, the two of us can spar a bit. I’m sure that this will definitely help both of us improve our abilities. Don’t worry, I won’t go full force; this is just a sparring match.”
Seeing that Linley suffered serious injuries while killing a Four-Winged Angel, McKenzie believed Linley was not truly a match for him.
“McKenzie, my Dragonform is indeed at the Saint-level. However…” Linley looked confidently at McKenzie. “I just broke through to that level now, after the battle. When I was fighting against the Cherub, I hadn’t broken through yet.” Right now, as far as Linley was concerned, although he wasn’t confident in his ability to deal with peak-stage Saint-level experts, he was still confident in dealing with people at McKenzie’s level.
Having reached the Saint-level, there was no longer a need for him to conceal himself or hide his power.
“What? You broke through just now?” McKenzie was shocked to hear this.
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