An empty plain amidst the ruins.
Yu Lang had a cheeky grin on his face as he sat on the ground. Still dangling in the air, Zhao Kuo was chortling as well, swinging with the wind.
"Yu Lang, you rascal. You’re smarter than you look. It's like you have a brain!"
"You praise me too much," Yu Lang said, scratching his head in a bashful gesture.
Shi Huang looked at the two. They were of no more use to him now. And all they could do was throw angry words at him. There was no need to bother with them anymore.
Song Yunfeng was the more frustrated one. He had come up with this plan, and Yu Lang had ruined it completely.
"Yu Lang, you two had the chance to make it to the top 10. Why choose to be eliminated here? You think it's worth it?" Song Yunfeng needled him.
Yu Lang drawled lazily back at him, "A blockhead like you wouldn't understand, Song Yunfeng. Yu Lang here might like money, but even I have standards. At the very least, I wouldn't do something like backstab my own school to help out other schools."
"Your words mean nothing. I will go on to the Astral Sage College. And you two, your careers end here," Song Yunfeng replied coldly.
Yu Lang smirked at him. "Really? Even Li Luo fought you to a draw last time. Who's to say what's possible or not?"
A dark shadow crossed Song Yunfeng's eyes. This Yu Lang really had a poisonous mouth.
Shi Huang cut him off with a gesture. "Enough. This plan has failed. We will continue to search for them inch by inch. They cannot hide for long."
Song Yunfeng nodded, turning away from Yu Lang.
Unbeknownst to them, Li Luo was watching this all with a calm expression.
His expression was calm, not a single ripple of emotion showing. And yet those familiar with Li Luo would know that this was extremely unusual for this usually warm and amiable man. Something was wrong.
A calm expression was intense anger for Li Luo.
His gaze lingered on Shi Huang and Song Yunfeng for a few seconds, then he turned, moving swiftly and surely away.
As he left, Shi Huang seemed to sense something, as if an enemy had been watching him. He turned vaguely in that direction.
Could it be Li Luo? Best if it was. Surely that exchange must have angered him.
Then again, what could a weakling's anger do?
Inside the tree hollow.
When Li Luo returned, Lu Qing'er was still recovering. He did not disturb her, instead sitting down and cultivating with his eyes closed.
Another hour passed.
When the sun began to set, russet rays cast long shadows on Whitespirit Mountain. Vision fell, but Li Luo could hear more voices coming their way. The searchers.
Li Luo opened his eyes to Lu Qing'er's lovely eyes staring at him. The latter quickly averted hers.
"How's the recovery?" Li Luo asked.
"Not bad," Lu Qing'er said with a pretty smile.
Li Luo was silent for a few beats. "Right now, can you still beat Shi Huang?"
Lu Qing'er hesitated. She shook her head. "I can't. Shi Huang is not weaker than me. If my Hands of Ice Jade were in peak condition, I might be able to. But now that it's expended, it will not recover in a short time. Plus, my injuries are not completely healed.
"Besides, Shi Huang's Voltaic Plating Armor is quite daunting. Without the Hands of Ice Jade, I can't break it."
Li Luo's face fell when he heard that. Didn't that mean Shi Huang would get first place sooner or later?
Lu Qing'er sensed something off about Li Luo's mood. She asked cautiously, "Li Luo, what's wrong?"
"I will have Shi Huang and Song Yunfeng eliminated before the top 10 are decided," Li Luo said ruthlessly.
"They captured Zhao Kuo and humiliated him, trying to force me out. But in the end, Yu Lang snuck in to eliminate Zhao Kuo himself, then smashed his own crystal medallion.
Examination suicide," Li Luo said tonelessly.
Lu Qing'er's beautiful features were lit with anger now. "That's too much!"
Now she knew why Li Luo was thrown off. His usual, sunny demeanor was gone. He was truly angry now.
"I'll help you. Shi Huang is hard to deal with, but if we fight to the bitter end, he might not win!" Lu Qing'er suddenly said after a long silence.
Li Luo looked at her. He saw a vengeful resolution in Lu Qing'er's eyes that surprised him. Could she have something else up her sleeve?
But it seemed like such an ace, if it existed, would come at a heavy price. Otherwise, she would not have held it back when she was already at the brink of elimination.
Li Luo was moved, but he shook his head, smiling. "I'll deal with Shi Huang. You take care of Xiang Liang, Chi Su, and Zong Fu."
Lu Qing'er stared at him, aghast. "You? Deal with Shi Huang?"
Although she did not want to crush his spirit, the truth was that Li Luo was only a Seventh Seal, while Shi Huang was a Ninth Seal with a seventh-grade lightning resonance!
That was far stronger than Song Yunfeng and the others.
Li Luo gave a reluctant smile. "Well, I didn't intend to steal your spotlight this time around, but who asked them to push me like that?
"Don't blame me for it. My hand was forced."
"Oh, who cares about the spotlight. But you... Don't put on a brave front, okay? I already said I can help you beat Shi Huang," Lu Qing'er said with a stomp of her foot.
She was afraid that Li Luo would recklessly go solo and end up in Shi Huang's hands.
"Have some confidence..." Li Luo smiled.
"You're a Seventh Seal! Light years apart from Shi Huang!" Lu Qing'er cried.
"That at least is true."
Li Luo agreed. "So I intend to reach the Eighth Seal!"
Lu Qing'er was speechless. "What?
"Done." Li Luo breathed out.
Lu Qing'er was confused as all hell. She was just about to speak, when her eyes went wide as she stared at Li Luo in shock.
She could sense the resonant power within him stirring... His resonant power had increased?
He was really an Eighth Seal?!!
She was absolutely flabbergasted. Was this some sort of prank?! Was Li Luo really this amazing?Previous Chapter Next Chapter