All attention was focused on the white-haired youth dressed in black as he stepped out from the ten thousand mountains. His steps were slow, yet steady, a sign that he was fearless in the face of death.
“Tianming, why…” Ye Shaoqing muttered with a mixture of emotions, only to be answered by the young man’s blazing eyes.
“This is the first time in my life that I’ve seen an apprentice willing to use his own life to trade for his master’s. Ye Shaoqing, you’re a lucky man.” Yuwen Taiji rested the Grand-Orient Sword on the ground as he gazed in Tianming’s direction.
No one understood where Tianming got the guts to face the enraged sect master, whose son died by his hands.
“Junior sect master.…” Many elders shut their eyes.
“The gods have forsaken our young genius!”
“I admire his courage, but it’s that courage that’ll kill him right now.”
“Every single one of us here is responsible for the death of the junior sect master!”
It was a struggle for the elders as well. This was the second time Li Tianming had chosen to step out, this time without even a glimmer of hope of survival. Many even questioned themselves on whether they could do the same, only to shake in fear. That included those from the Cloudmist Sword School, like Sikong Jiansheng, as well as the red-eyed Jun Niancang.
“Li Tianming, you’re something special, and I respect you for that.” It was none other than the terrifying Yuwen Taiji who said that.
“Cut your crap. I’m here, so let him go.” Tianming stood his ground and faced Yuwen Taiji.
Ye Shaoqing exchanged a look with him. Of course, he knew Tianming was here to buy time, but that would put him in great danger.
“What’s the hurry? I’ll definitely release him once I’m done with you, and everyone here can be your witness,” Yuwen Taiji snickered as he stepped towards Tianming.
“Do you think a scum like you has any credibility left? What are you afraid of, considering that I’m already here.” Tianming made sure his voice was loud enough that every single person could hear him.
“Well then.” Yuwen Taiji smiled and released the chains that were binding Ye Shaoqing. The person he really wanted to kill was right in front of him, so he saw no reason to worry.
While Ye Shaoqing was now free, his injuries still hindered his movements as he struggled to crawl back to his feet. Still fuming in Yuwen Taiji and Tianming’s direction, he noticed the tiny cracks that had begun appearing under his feet. As he focused, he could even feel a slight tremor in the earth below him. He was also the only one to notice the blood-red beam shooting up into the sky behind Fatepath Peak.
Yuwen Taiji had approached Tianming, the Grand-Orient Sword pressed against the youth’s head. The weight of the sword was enough to make Tianming’s legs shake.
This was a sight that many dared not watch. It was a shame for a pentabane to die in such a place, having to trade his own life for another’s. As much as his courage was praised and admired, everyone knew that there would only be one possible outcome.
“Any last words, or are you too scared to say anything?” Yuwen Taiji’s gaze was fierce, but a smile crept up his face, as he could finally avenge for his own son.
“Why should I be? Count how old you are! Were I your age, you wouldn’t even be worthy of licking my boots. I may die here today, but you’re the one that’s being embarrassed. I have nothing to fear!” Even with the sword pressing on his head, Tianming showed no fear as he stared into Yuwen Taiji’s eyes.
“Ha!” Yuwen Taiji couldn’t stop himself from laughing. “Now I know why Shendu lost to you. Such a shame that you met me while you were still young.”
“You’re just lucky. In three years, I’d be able to crush you with a single hand,” Tianming snapped back, ignoring the threat of the sword. Surprisingly, the sword hadn’t hurt him a bit, an abnormal occurrence, considering how sharp it was.
As for Yuwen Taiji, he could only see disdain in Li Tianming’s eyes. Ever since he had returned with the Grand-Orient Sword, even all the elders had knelt before his power. He said he could crush me with a single hand in three years? Yuwen Taiji felt anger burning in his chest. But when he wanted to snap back at Li Tianming, he suddenly thought of his sons.
“Shengcheng, Shendu, are you seeing this? I, your father, have already become the sect master of the Grand-Orient Sect. And now I’ll sacrifice the blood of a pentabane in your memory!
“My sons, I’m sorry, I disappointed both of you. After I’ve conquered the Grand-Orient Realm in the name of the Yuwen Clan, I’ll join you in the yellow river to apologize to the both of you! Should we meet again in our next life, I’ll bring you all the wealth and glory you can ever imagine!” With blood dripping from his eyes, Yuwen Taiji lifted the Grand-Orient Sword into the air.
“Junior sect master!” the crowd gasped. The entire sect was watching in tears as Tianming stood where he was without budging an inch.
“Yuwen Taiji! You are the only one at fault for the death of your own sons! If you’d taught Yuwen Shengcheng any better, he wouldn’t have been that cocky little brat asking for death. And if Yuwen Shengcheng didn’t die, his brother wouldn’t have had to. You’re the reason they died, so why bother me when you should be killing yourself?
“Or maybe it was because you were a rat to begin with, and one who would even backstab his closest friend! Your sons’ death is your own karmic retribution!” Each word Tianming said only further fueled Yuwen Taiji’s rage.
Yuwen Taiji sent the sword swinging down onto Tianming’s head. It was infused with the power of a saint, and that was more than enough to split Tianming into half there and then.
But as a metallic clang rang in the air, the audience held their breaths in shock. That wasn’t the sound metal was supposed to make when it met flesh. To everyone’s surprise, the Grand-Orient Sect was resting on Tianming’s head, its razor-sharp edge unable to even cut through his hair!
Yuwen Taiji was the most shocked of everyone present. It was enough to split Ye Shaoqing in two pieces, so why was Li Tianming unharmed?
Only Tianming knew the answer to that question. Since the beginning when the Grand-Orient Sword had touched his head, he could feel a resonance from his bloodline. The sword was like a person, telling him that no one in this entire world could harm him with it. It was also worth mentioning that Tianming had the Prime Tower inside his body, which was another reason the sword couldn’t be used against him.
Every last bit of Yuwen Taiji’s strength had been absorbed by the Grand-Orient Sword, proving that even an earth saint couldn’t fully understand its mysteries. It was like a living thing, even comforting Tianming as it resonated with him.
I won my bet! This is my Grand-Orient Sword! That was the greatest joy and accomplishment that Tianming had achieved from taking this risk. In fact, it was an instinct that he could feel from just looking at the sword. Yuwen Taiji was using something that wasn’t rightfully his, which was why he could only use a fraction of its true power. Thus, Tianming had survived!
Yuwen Taiji couldn’t believe his own eyes, and repositioned himself to stab Tianming in the heart. But although the impact of the sword threw Tianming a thousand meters away, he remained unharmed on landing!
“Is he invincible?”
“Yuwen Taiji can’t kill him!”
The crowd erupted into chaos. To make things even better, Ye Shaoqing and the Azureflame Dragon had appeared by Tianming’s side the moment he was knocked back. Even though Ye Shaoqing was badly injured, he still grabbed Tianming and tossed him on the dragon’s back.
Only then did Yuwen Taiji recover from the shock, and when he looked up, his killing intent was ten times stronger!
“Interesting, how bloody interesting! No wonder they call you the greatest descendant of the Li Saint Clan. Even the second ancestor with bloodbane couldn’t match your talent. But rest assured that I have plenty of ways to kill you without using the Grand-Orient Sword!”
Yuwen Taiji dashed forward with his Yangfiend Taotie and Yinfiend Taotie, closing the gap in the blink of an eye.
“Die!!” Even though it was just a punch, the badly injured Ye Shaoqing and Tianming could only run. It was just a matter of time before Yuwen Taiji would catch up to them!
But at that very instance, a man suddenly stumbled into the middle of the battlefield with unsteady steps. His hair was unruly, his eyes glowed red like a bloody inferno, and clouds of blood-colored mist followed in his wake and painted the mountains red. Accompanied by a weakened Void Kunpeng, his hands were placed on a dagger thrust straight through his heart!
“Yuwen Taiji!!” The roar echoed through the mountains, the voice one that the people of the Grand-Orient Sect hadn’t heard for a long time.
Stunned, Yuwen Taiji stopped in his tracks and turned, just in time to witness the man pulling a Venomdrake Spike out of his chest!
At that moment, the Bloodbane Barrier released a pulse that shook the earth, and fissures ripped open the ground. The endless clouds of blood mist gathered and fused into his body as the shadow of the Li Clan ancestors appeared on the barrier. Together, their voices rang across the entire Grand-Orient Realm!
“Who dares touch the Li Saint Clan!”
The man walked out of the cloud of blood mist, a menacing crimson saber in his hands and his red-stained hair dancing in the wind.Previous Chapter Next Chapter