Under the Throughgate, out of the five people who were previously blocking the road, only the second cloudmist disciple, Jing Xuan, remained standing, while the others were sprawled on the ground. The three onyx disciples were in a sorry state, either foaming at the mouth, covered in scars, electrified, or burnt to a crisp. Their lifebound beasts had fared no better. They had expected Sikong Tianchen to avenge them, yet the man was seriously injured. Their eyes rolled back and their hearts felt like they had been stabbed into a million pieces.
"He’s definitely at Unity. How did he defeat Sikong Tianchen, who’d already advanced to Heavenly Will..."
"Just who is he?"
The three onyx disciples shrank to one side. Recalling their previous taunts, their miserable state only felt more embarrassing.
A pale Jing Xuan tried to help Sikong Tianchen, but was pushed away. It was a pity the latter used too much strength, pulling at the sword wound in his abdomen. Sikong Tianchen gasped and trembled in pain, cold sweat trailing down his forehead.
"Senior Brother, how could he be so strong...." Jing Xuan looked at Tianming in bewilderment.
The humiliation of defeat ate away at his insides like a poisonous insect. He could only look toward the Throughgate in anticipation of the heavy price Tianming was about to pay.
"A pentabane comparable to Li Shenxiao has appeared...."
As Tianming approached, Weisheng Ruosu trembled slightly, equal parts surprised and excited. The brother and sister had grown up listening to stories of Li Shenxiao and Weisheng Yuyin.
"Brother Tianming, thank you for saving us! You have my admiration. You’re the first man at Unity to defeat someone at Heavenly Will!" Weisheng Qingluan had long been amazed by Tianming’s feats. His eyes shone with admiration, like a newly-converted fan.
"Your performance is certainly enough to have defeated Yuwen Shendu." Weisheng Ruosu had the same look of admiration in her eyes. As long as they fought anywhere but above the sea, she was no match for Tianming. No matter what the others thought, the siblings were completely convinced of Tianming's talent and strength.
"Big Sister, go on!" Weisheng Qingluan winked.
"That’s enough nonsense from you. Don’t make me hit you," snapped Weisheng Ruosu.
"But you’re blushing," laughed Weisheng Qingluan.
"How is that possible? No way!" Despite being certain she wasn’t blushing, Weisheng Ruosu covered her face.
What was originally an innocent situation had taken on an ambiguous undertone, thanks to Ying Huo and Weisheng Qingluan’s teasing. Watching the hero save the damsel in distress further frustrated Sikong Tianchen and made him boil with rage. But even now, the man’s name was still a mystery to him.
In order to clear the embarrassment, Tianming targeted the five of them instead. With him below the gates, these people had no chance of passing through. Grabbing one of the onyx disciples by the neck, he asked, "How many people made it through already?"
"I won’t tell you even if you kill me!" shouted the onyx disciple.
Tianming pointed the Onyx Dragon three inches below the man’s navel and asked, "What if I cut off this thing?"
"Alright, I’ll speak! Only Li Wusheng and Li Jiusi have gone through the gates." He shivered.
Those two were disciples of the Onyx Sect, and twin grandsons of the Onyx Emperor.
"So there’s five places left," Tianming remarked.
"Are we heading up now?" asked Weishing Ruosu.
"If we do, there’ll still be two places left. Hold on, I’ll decide who gets to take both places," said Tianming.
"How domineering," chuckled Weisheng Qingluan.
"Not really. No one’s as domineering as I am. If I’m first, Meow Meow would have to be second," Ying Huo said.
There were fifteen disciples in total. Aside from their party and those Tianming had seen, there were a few remaining. Sikong Tianchen and the other four had been driven out by Tianming.
A little while later, Shangguan Yunfeng joined them. Upon noticing Tianming and the Weisheng siblings, he looked surprised. "What are you doing waiting around here? They haven’t announced the end of the Throughpath battle, have they?"
"Are you all right?"
Although Shangguan Yunfeng appeared unkempt, he wasn’t seriously injured or humiliated.
"Yes. I didn't see anyone, though I fought several wildbeasts. Have you met the disciples of the Onyx Sect and Cloudmist Sword School?"
"Yes, but they’ve been beaten and chased away by Brother Tianming. We certainly believe he’s a pentabane now," laughed Weisheng Qingluan.
"Is that so? I’ve witnessed it before, too," said Shangguan Yunfeng.
Unexpectedly, Zhao Lingzhou showed up at this point as well. "Are you guys on a date?" scoffed Zhao Lingzhou.
"There’s seven of us," said Tianming. There were two onyx disciples present, as well as the five allies.
"What do you mean?" asked a puzzled Zhao Lingzhou. "It’s weird. I didn’t see anyone this whole time."
If it weren’t for Tianming, Sikong Tianchen’s grand hospitality would have been forced unto them.
"Don’t worry about the particulars. Anyway, do you have any objections to the five of us being allies in the upcoming Realm Wars?" asked Tianming.
Three Grand-Orient Sect prime disciples working with two southsky disciples.
"I don't." Weisheng Ruosu was the first to speak up.
Weisheng Qingluan and Shangguan Yunfeng nodded as well.
"You southsky disciples won’t stab me in the back, will you?" wondered Zhao Lingzhou.
"Stab you where? In your butthole?" laughed Ying Huo.
"Where are your manners!" glared Zhao Lingzhou. However, he could tell they were all trustworthy.
"Though we’re supposed to be allies, in fact, we need Tianming and Ruosu’s protection," said Shangguan Yunfeng.
"We’ll fight together. Let’s go!"
The Throughgate was just around the corner. Headed by Tianming, both the Southsky Sect and Grand-Orient Sect’s geniuses rushed out of the Throughpath. When the magnificent light of Heaven’s Elysium shone upon them, the five were already standing below the Throughgate. The spectators there were watching them, but they couldn’t see any eminent figures.
The light burned. Tianming stood in front, his eyes slightly narrowed. When he opened his eyes again, he was greeted by countless seats below the Throughgate. Among the audience, the powerhouses of Heaven’s Elysium were seated in the center, while those from the Onyx Sect and Cloudmist Sword School sat on their left and right, respectively.
Having met them outside the Heaven Inn, Tianming was acquainted with them all. Behind the East Cardinal King, Jun Dongyao, were several fearsome youths. Tianming swept his gaze across them and failed to spot Yueling Long among them.
However, present here were opponents far stronger than Sikong Tianchen who gave him a sense of crisis, especially the golden-robed boy behind Jun Dongyao, whose eyes reminded him of the Golden Dragon.
Aside from these people, there were two young men standing to the left of Tianming and the others, one in grey robes while the other wore black. The former was about a meter and a half tall and was very thin, without any excess flesh on his body. He was all skeleton and weighed thirty-five kilos, at most. In his eyes flickered a gray flame which looked terrifying against that skeleton-like face.
The one in black was the exact opposite. He was more than two meters tall and built like a mountain. Even the wide black robes could barely cover his body. He had pitch-black skin and magnificent muscles. His short hair resembled needle-like spikes.
Tianming had previously read about the two; the man in grey was Li Wusheng, and the one in black was Li Jiusi. They were the grandsons of the Onyx Emperor. Judging from their appearances, people might not believe that they were actually twin brothers. Together with Tianming’s party, they made seven, occupying seven places to participate in the Realm Wars.
The moment Tianming and the others entered the Throughgate, the battle of Throughpath ended. As challengers, they needed to bear the pressure of the powerhouses from Heaven’s Elysium, the Onyx Sect, and the Cloudmist Sword School.
With the intention to dominate and crush, gazes from Heaven’s Elysium’s Jun Dongyao, the Onyx Emperor and Empress, and Sikong Jiansheng of the Cloudmist Sword School fell upon him. Sikong Jiansheng’s swordlike gaze seemed to pierce Tianming and would be enough to make many young disciples lower their heads.
However, Tianming wasn’t so easily frightened. With narrowed eyes, he stood in front of his allies, resisting the pressure from these powerhouses.
"Li Tianming, disciple of the Grand-Orient Sect, greets my seniors from Heaven’s Elysium, the Onyx Sect, and the Cloudmist Sword School!"
Not only did he resist the pressure, he was neither humble nor arrogant and spoke fluently. There were many who hadn’t known of him before, but they certainly did now. Tianming noticed looks of shock, surprise, and confusion coming from them.
These people obviously felt even more uncomfortable now that he had defeated Sikong Tianchen, especially Sikong Jiansheng. His expression was livid, his lips trembling and eyes burning from humiliation. The armrest of his seat had been completely deformed by his hands. There was certain danger in the way he glared at Tianming.
Thinking back to how proud he was at the Heaven Inn, Sikong Jiansheng shook with anger. As followers of Heaven’s Elysium, the elders of the Cloudmist Sword School had been humiliated, since none of their disciples would be participants in the Realm Wars. They had made such fools of themselves, thanks to Tianming’s sudden emergence.
"You’re Li Wudi’s son? I heard you replaced Yuwen Taiji’s son for the Realm Wars," said Jun Dongyao.Previous Chapter Next Chapter