Chapter 685 - Nonahall Divine Realm

"Oh really? If your brother intends to help me as a comrade even at the cost of his life, then I will also do the same," Tianming said as he exited the Deepstar Pool, his body glowing like a star.

"Good!" Xuanyuan Muxue's eyes glowed as she relaxed. "Then I can rest assured. Even though things might still be a little awkward between you two, it's good that you can fight side by side."

"Don't worry. A gentleman like me won’t settle personal grudges when we have other enemies to worry about." He knew that he was a little distant from the disciples of the Archaic House of Xuanyuan, but it didn't matter at the Number One Summit as his fate was intertwined with theirs. He would do his best in the fight, and if they didn't mind him joining, he would gladly help out.

Xuanyuan Muxue was rather relieved to hear it. "Don't worry. My brother is very open-minded and reasonable. He always keeps his word, which makes him admired by many."

"Alright, it's a deal." He immediately began to leave.

"Where are you going?"

"To cultivate at the Old Deepstar Path."

"Shouldn't you relax a little? The grand battle is starting tomorrow."

"How could I relax? You want to help me out with that? Give me a little squeeze?"

"Scram!"

"Then don't bother saying anything if you never intended to help out to begin with." He glared at her before leaving.

......

The next day, the Number One Summit officially began. Tianming left the Fiend Palace and headed straight for Deepstar Hall. Today, Yi Xingyin would be bringing the two hundred plus Heaven Branch disciples to Skyorigin Battlefield, where the disciples from all nine divine realms would engage in a bloodbath.

As for the audience, everything that happened in the Skyorigin Battlefield could be observed by all nine sects through the Skyeye Formation. In other words, the fight between the participants could be watched throughout the whole Flameyellow Continent. In the Archaion Sect alone, there was a Skyeye Formation in all three branches. The other eight sects also had their own ways to broadcast the battles as well.

"Both the Skyorigin and Nether Battlefields are parts of the Number One Battlefield, which itself is a large formation, but it isn’t an illusion formation. It’s the real deal. The Skyeye Formation is also part of the Number One Battlefield, and ten of them are spread out across the Flameyellow Continent. It was also jointly created by all nine divine realms to ensure fairness. The divine realms will be able to individually inspect it to ensure it hasn't been tampered with. Since there's a Skyeye Formation where Ling'er is, I bet she’ll be watching!"

The fight for the title of Number One was one that would shock the whole continent. The amazing performance would be broadcast for all to see through the Skyeye Formation.

"Even though the participants themselves can't see the audience, billions of people are watching them." 

That was probably for the benefit of the participants who might get nervous from seeing the large audience.

"I bet the three sect masters are watching it from the Dimensional Battlefield in Heaven Branch." Heaven Branch's Dimensional Battlefield was the largest battlefield in the Archaion Sect. Only thirty-two of the participants would make their way there and fight for the title of Number One. Tianming was completely oblivious to what the audience was talking about or what they were looking forward to. He and the other two hundred plus Heaven Branch disciples stood before Yi Xingyin.

"I won’t give a long-winded speech. I'm sure you all know how important this battle is. This is the day your dreams come true. The Archaion Sect needs geniuses like you. Thank you for standing here so bravely. You will not be forgotten!" Yi Xingyin said.

"Understood!" they replied in unison. They were the cream of the crop. Since they dared to come, there was not a trace of fear within them. They all knew how dangerous it would be, but it didn't deter them—especially those from the Archaic House of Xuanyuan. There were around forty of them, all willing to fight to their deaths.

"Let's go!" Yi Xingyin led them into the sky toward the Skyorigin Battlefield. The Number One Battlefield had been deployed south of Xuanyuan Lake. It was split into two parts; the top was the Skyorigin Battlefield and the bottom was the Nether Battlefield. The top was really wide while the bottom was deep, making it look a little like a mushroom from a distance. Near the top of the mushroom was a cloud-filled area that made up the Skyorigin Battlefield. The stem of the mushroom was a gray and black pillar that made up the nine layers of the Nether Battlefield. Tianming thought it was quite an impressive sight.

"I guess I could only expect the nine divine realms to settle things in such a grand manner."

The Deepstar Formation was far inferior to Number One Battlefield. The first battle of the day would begin in the Skyorigin Battlefield. As they approached it, Tianming saw eight other groups made up of second-level samsara disciples from the other eight divine realms also heading to the same destination. Even though they weren’t a united force, they still seemed really domineering, especially with how casual and relaxed they looked.

The nine groups eventually gathered together, but somehow the disciples of the Archaion Sect felt that they didn’t belong with the rest. The way the others mocked and looked down on them said as much. Some didn't even bother to hide it, while others only let hints of mockery leak from their stares.

Tianming knew that they were probably stronger with a single glance. Even though the Archaion Sect was the host of the Number One Summit, the outsiders didn't seem to take them seriously. It was almost like they were here for a field trip. They also had someone as powerful as Yi Xingyin leading them. 

Soon, they queued up and entered the Skyorigin Battlefield one by one. As the hosts, those from the Archaion Sect entered last as a matter of ceremony; it wouldn't give them any advantage or disadvantage.

The first group to enter had the most people, around four hundred of them, which was twice the number of the Archaion Sect's group. The sheer number of second-level samsaran disciples might make them the strongest sect of all.

"Is that the Nonahall Ghost Sect?" Tianming said. The Nonahall Divine Realm was the last one to form. Even though Xuanyuan Xi was the last to ascend to godhood, she didn't bring much to the Archaion Sect. The last to establish their descendants as one of the rulers of the Flameyellow Continent had been the ninth god, the Nonahall Specter. Even though the Nonahall Divine Realm's power had slightly decreased after a hundred thousand years, they were still at the top of the hierarchy.

"You're right," someone behind him answered.

Tianming turned back and saw a muscular man with a stubbly beard. He seemed a little rough around the edges, and looked like someone who had been around the block. There was a black third eye between his eyebrows, marking him as one of the Trioptic True Dragon Branch. Naturally, Tianming knew who he was. This person had been in the Fiend Palace ever since the first time he visited. He was Xuanyuan Muxue's eldest brother, Xuanyuan Yucheng, the current top disciple in the Archaion Sect. He was among the eldest participants, and also the strongest. Being an honorable man who kept his word, he was respected by many. However, he couldn't lead all the disciples of the Heaven Branch, as those from the Draconis House of Jian and Sterling House of Fang had their own agendas.

"Li Tianming, I heard from Muxue that you’re aware that many of them will be out for your head," he said in a deep voice.

"That's right."

"Since you still dared to come, I believe that you’re truly willing to serve Her Eminence. Since that is the case, we’re comrades. If you can pass the battle at Skyorigin Battlefield and enter Nether Battlefield, all disciples of the Archaic House of Xuanyuan will consider you as one of us and look out for you."

"No problem. Let's not make too big a deal out of it."

"Alright." All of the Xuanyuan disciples had heard them. Since they hadn’t objected to it, that meant they had accepted him. "Muxue also mentioned that you made more progress."

"Yes, a little."

"Then, try your best to enter the Nether Battlefield. You’ll be assigned two random opponents during the battle in the Skyorigin Battlefield today. Only by defeating them will you be allowed to go to the Nether Battlefield. I hope you’re lucky and won't run into the most powerful disciples."

He was referring to those that were third-level samsarans and above, which the top five of the Heaven Ranking were. The Heaven Ranking only concerned itself with the combat capabilities of Heaven Branch disciples and didn't take into account age or talent. All of them on the ranking were here, but they didn't come talk to Tianming like Xuanyuan Yucheng had.

One of them was Fang Yuwei, who was ranked fourth at the age of twenty-seven. She was Fang Xingque's elder sister, and had personally witnessed him die.

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