The strongest aspect of lifebound beasts was undoubtedly their spiritsource abilities. As Li Tianming had Jiang Feiling’s help, he chose to deal with the stronger of the two, the Hepta-Starred Winged Lion.
Multiple booms rang out as lights slammed into Li Tianming over and over. Li Tianming attempted to use the Flaming Shadow Flash to dodge, but even with his speed, most of the blows still landed on his Infernal Armour, throwing his bloodflow and energy into disarray. Without his defenses, death would have probably claimed him; the attack had nearly shattered the Infernal Armour.
Enduring the attacks, Li Tianming rushed through the starlight to arrive in front of the lion, which was stunned to see him appear completely unharmed. At the same time, the Blazing Dragon Chainblade coiled around one of the lion’s wings, tangling the lifebound beast as Li Tianming used Skyfire Soulbinder. With its target now locked down, the scorching Infernal Blaze spread to its foe with the chainblade as a medium, eating away at the lion.
“Get over here!” With this opening, Li Tianming yanked on the chain and dragged the lion over to him, before using his left hand to unleash the Three-Spring Heavy Strike.
The three punches smashed onto the lion’s head, shattering its skull. The lion wailed miserably, collapsing a moment later, foam dribbling out of its mouth.
“Lil’ Seven!” The previously pleased Chen Hao was flabbergasted. He was currently being driven mad by the little chick, who was moving so fast that it might as well be invisible, leaving him unable to help his lion.
He couldn’t underestimate it, not with its unpredictable movements. His robes could protect most of his body, but it left certain areas like his face unprotected. A moment of inattention would leave him with a pound of flesh gone.
Furthermore, any attempts to chase the little chick would fail due to the Temporal Field’s impact on his speed. He had suffered like this for a while, only for the unbelievable development of Li Tianming injuring his Hepta-Starred Winged Lion heavily.
It was a great blow to his confidence. Those three violent punches caused his scalp to numb, while the manipulations of the chainblade was an art unto themselves. While chains looked gentler than swords, their flexibility in battle far surpassed swords.
When Chen Hao finally recovered from his shock, it was too late.
“How the hell could he be this strong? His lifebound beast used to be a wildbeast!”
Chen Hao wanted to cry, but tears didn’t come. In the past, he had never understood why his brother Chen Yao had collapsed mentally after his defeat by Li Tianming. Now, he understood. His guts and aspirations had been crushed by Li Tianming’s three punches.
The lion’s continued wails only made him even more despondent.
In his moment of absent-mindedness, the little chick unleashed its Infernal Blaze, which took the form of a phoenix that rushed him.
Fortunately, a giant, golden beast charged over. A golden stream of energy slammed into the phoenix, dispersing it. Even more fortunate was the fact that the intervening attack had arrived at an angle, sparing Chen Hao from being covered by the remnants of Ying Huo’s attack.
Naturally, Chen Hao’s saviour was Xing Que. Xing Que was actually even more shaken than Chen Hao, because it had been a very, very close shave in saving Chen Hao.
“Together!” Chen Hao finally found his confidence. We outnumber him two to one, there’s no need to be scared!
If they had known Li Tianming would be this hard to deal with, they wouldn’t have been so conceited. Now, the two of them as well as the Solar Horned Tiger besieged Li Tianming.
Chen Hao’s eyes turned bloodshot now that the chance for revenge had come.
“You take the chick. Solar and I will take care of him. He seems to be even stronger than his lifebound beast and he has Jiang Feiling helping!” Xing Que didn’t dare to be conceited anymore either. If the little chick was tied down, it would be equivalent to Li Tianming not having a beast.
“Teach him a lesson!” Chen Hao spat. However, it didn’t change how shaken he was inside, when he clearly remembered Li Tianming’s opponent one short month ago had been his little brother.
Back then, my pinky alone could crush this Li Tianming. How can he be this strong now? Chen Hao vividly recalled the fear he’d felt a moment ago; only by defeating Li Tianming with Xing Que could he remove this inner demon.
And yet, defeating Li Tianming under their current circumstances would never dispel the terror he felt earlier. As long as he wasn’t a match for Li Tianming alone, he would never be able to stand upright again. He was ashamed to face Sage Chen, and he was hard-pressed to explain everything to his irascible mother!
His mother would be furious once she found out, and what would he do if she treated him as trash henceforth?
On the other side, Xing Que and his tiger seemed to have Li Tianming under control, their coordinated assault pressuring him over and over.
Alarm bells began to ring in his head for some reason, and Chen Hao looked over. With his Celestial Wings, Li Tianming had led the flightless Xing Que and his tiger a distance away. Xing Que and the tiger were hot in pursuit, but their quarry’s ability to fly and the inherent superiority of his chainblade’s range enabled Li Tianming to toy with them.
Chen Hao wasn’t too sure why he felt alarmed, but the answer came a moment later. With an outburst of speed, Li Tianming changed course abruptly, streaking towards the alarmed Chen Hao at a speed that Xing Que couldn’t react to.
Within moments, Li Tianming had left him in the dust. Even if Xing Que could catch up, the Temporal Field was still active and waiting for him.
In a blink of an eye, the tables had turned; Li Tianming and Ying Huo were now attacking Chen Hao. Even though Xing Que only needed a moment or two to reach them, it was more than enough for Li Tianming. Chen Hao’s eyes were dull, with the starlight that once filled them now replaced with shock — the youth had taken heavy psychological damage.
“You’re already terrified of me.” Li Tianming swooped down from the sky, his chainblade snaking out and stabbing at Chen Hao.
Chen Hao executed his Cosmic Brilliante Sword Art to force Li Tianming back. It was a commendable reaction given his state of mind, but it just wasn't enough. A crimson glow sprang up behind him as he fended off Li Tianming's attack.
He turned to look, but a fiery phoenix had already slammed into him. The Infernal Blaze immediately engulfed him, turning him into a fiery war god! Unfortunately, he wasn’t Li Tianming; immediately after the attack landed, his star robes began to burn. Panicking, Chen Hao began to strip — a fiery death awaited him otherwise.
It was at this moment a whip crashed into his face. Chen Hao tumbled onto the ground, losing a few teeth as he rolled away from Li Tianming. His pain-filled shrieks lasted for a moment or so before the Hepta-Star Arcane Sword pierced through his thigh and pinned him to the ground below. His face pale, he could see Li Tianming’s chain wrapped around the sword that had pierced through his leg.
The pain overwhelmed him a moment later, granting him the luxury of unconsciousness.
Although Chen Hao had wanted to kill Li Tianming, the latter had shown mercy. In the end, Chen Hao was Sage Chen’s son. His father had shown him kindness before, and he would repay that by letting Chen Hao live.
However, Li Tianming’s deliberations on this matter came to an end, as a furious Xing Que caught up. Honestly, if the four of them had attacked Li Tianming together from the very start, attaining victory would have been far harder. Kiting Xing Que and luring him away was a good move on his part, although the arrogance they had shown earlier had been the clincher.
Right before this, the little chick had helped Li Tianming block Xing Que. Now, it returned to being one versus one.
Xing Que was outwardly ferocious, but on the inside, he could no longer treat Li Tianming lightly. A frown appeared on his face as he entered a desperate battle with Li Tianming; he no longer had the luxury to ponder the immense changes that Li Tianming underwent in a mere month.
“Hey, Xing Que. Interested in finding out if I can trample all over that face of yours?”