The clang of resonant power-charged steel echoed through the forest, sending flurries of leaves rippling outwards.
Li Luo was perched high on a tree branch, swords in hand as he warily watched the two guys charging over from his right. He could tell from their first clash that they were both Lower Clear in strength, roughly as strong as he was. They also must have been champions or close in their province.
"Stop running, Li Luo! You can't get away, just let us complete the mission!" one of them shouted, brandishing his serrated sword. A grey resonant power covered his body, making his skin look like stone.
He had a stone resonance, which was considered a variation of the earth resonance.
The other youth hefted an iron club. The vague silhouette of a red ape hovered behind his body.
"Damn, they came too fast," Li Luo thought to himself. He was starting to reach the deeper parts of the forest now, and the spirit beasts had definitely helped stave off some pursuers. Still, there were plenty who had slipped the net, and those who could repel the spirit beasts were rather strong.
"Come now, brothers, why must you force me so? Since I'm so handsome, how about we sit down for a good chat, eh? What do you say?" Li Luo said, trying to buy time to think.
"Damn, disgusting! Cut him down!"
Both shouted in disgust. Their resonant powers flew out, coming at him from both his sides as they leaped forward with weapons raised.
Li Luo flexed his legs, bending a branch to propel himself straight forward.
"Li Luo, you're insane!"
Seeing him charge the two of them, they laughed coldly. Li Luo was a Lower Clear like themselves. One against two, what chance did he stand?
"Crimson Flame Smash!" the club-wielding youth shouted. His club glowed red with heated resonant power.
Li Luo summoned his Waterlight Demon Mirror to deal with this ferocious club attack.
The club crashed into his Waterlight Demon Mirror, smashing it into pieces, but not before it landed a vicious counter that sent the youth flying backwards, almost losing his grip on his weapon.
With one opponent out of the picture, Li Luo turned to the stone resonant user, charging his shortswords grimly with water resonance power.
Reinforced Water Edge Art!
He clashed with his opponent head on.
This time, the stone resonant user paled. He could sense that the incoming attack was far stronger than his own resonant power.
"Impossible! He's only a Lower Clear—how can he be this strong?!" His desperate protest went unanswered as he was also sent flying, crashing into a tree trunk with such force that it snapped.
A trickle of blood ran down his mouth, and he looked completely shaken.
"See? Should have sat down and talked it out after all." Li Luo flashed him a grin and then beat it, fleeing deeper into the woods.
He was not intending to get tangled up with these two.
The club-wielder watched Li Luo go, but he did not chase. He had seen how Li Luo had thrashed his companion.
"How is Li Luo so strong?" the club-wielding youth demanded of the stone resonant user. He helped him up.
"No idea. The newcomers' information said that Li Luo should have only just broken into the Clear Seed Tier. But I feel like he's at least an Upper Clear in strength," the stone resonant user complained, wiping blood away from his mouth.
"Seems like the violet talisman is out of our reach, then," the club wielder said resignedly.
His friend nodded. Suddenly, there was movement in the trees nearby. They saw a blue-haired youth emerge.
"That's... Duze Beixuan?" Both immediately recognized the fourth-ranked newcomer.
"Did you two just tangle with Li Luo here? Seems like you couldn't stop him." He grinned at the pair.
They scowled at him.
Duze Beixuan was unfazed. "Which way did he go?" he asked.
The club-wielder pointed unwillingly. "He's very strong. Not at all like a new Clear Seed Tier cultivator."
Duze Beixuan was already swiftly moving past them. His condescending voice floated back to them.
"He's not very strong. You are very weak."
Both flushed in anger.
"Luckily, we gave him a random direction."
While things were getting heavy deep in the forest, another incident was happening somewhere else.
A slim youth with narrow eyes was smiling at a girl that was in his way. "Friend Qing'er, what do you mean to do by blocking my way?"
He fanned himself with a jade fan as he spoke.
Lu Qing'er stood before him impassively. "Wang Hejiu, are you going this way to attack Li Luo?"
Wang Hejiu was ranked second on the newcomers' ranking.
Wang Hejiu smiled slightly. "Defeat Li Luo, win a violet talisman. A worthy pursuit."
"Then I cannot let you pass," Lu Qing'er said.
"Friend Qing'er, you are not my match," Wang Hejiu pointed out. "Why do this?"
"Even delaying you would be good," Lu Qing'er said mildly. She removed her ice silk gloves, revealing her dainty hands.
Li Luo could not possibly be in a good situation right now. Wang Hejiu would be a huge threat to him. She had to do what she could to delay him.
Still, the disparity between them was all too clear. If she wanted to hold him for even a minute, she would have to pull out her final trump card immediately. Fortunately, it was no longer as damaging to herself as before, now that she was at the Resonant Master Stage.
Wang Hejiu looked at her in surprise. "Friend Qing'er, if you consent to date me in the future, I can accept your request today." He smiled.
His reply was a blast of icy resonant power that left the ground frozen.
"Well, then I'll just have to show you the gap between us," he said.
Green resonant power plumed from his body like a mist, and the leaves beneath his feet turned black immediately, as if they had rotted.
Their resonant power shot forth and clashed.Previous Chapter Next Chapter