Chapter 1077 Subdued

The devastating Genesis Qi pressure had already faded from the hall. However, Han Jinhe and the other two were drenched in sweat, the earlier disdain in their eyes now replaced by terror.

They had been utterly frightened by Zhou Yuan’s terrifying Genesis Qi pressure.

A 2.3 billion Genesis Qi foundation!

And it was not even the advanced Heavenly Sun stage, but the intermediate!

The three of them were top practitioners among the numerous unaffiliated cultivators, but when had they ever seen such a frightening intermediate Heavenly Sun stage foundation?! Even the current king of the Heavenly Sun stage, Guan Qinglong, was not this terrifying at the intermediate stage, right?

The Han Jinhe trio finally experienced the meaning of a despairing gap. The three of them had stepped into the Heavenly Sun stage many years ago but had now been left in the dust by Zhou Yuan, who had only advanced to the Heavenly Sun stage half a year ago.

On the stone steps to the hall, Zhou Yuan’s face remained impassive as he stared at the trio below.

Under his gaze, the three gradually returned to their senses. For a time, ashamed looks colored their faces. Recalling their arrogant attitudes towards Zhou Yuan earlier made them feel like a bunch of clowns.

Zhou Yuan withdrew his imposing aura as he slowly said, “Do the three of you still feel that I am not qualified enough to lead the Tianyuan Region’s Heavenly Sun team?”

The trio exchanged a look. In the end, they said with some difficulty, “We are the ones who were blind.”

How could they not understand by now that grand elder Zhou Yuan’s goal had been to subdue their arrogance? The provocations from earlier were merely setting the groundwork.

Zhou Yuan gazed at them. There was almost no trace of the uncompromising stance from earlier as he said, “I understand the three of you want to become captain because you’re worried that we will give careless commands that will result in serious losses among the unaffiliated practitioners. However, I feel that my Tianyuan Region is still one of the nine regions after all, and we are still a formidable force to be reckoned with. To be blunt, if we do encounter something that even we are unable to handle, sending you guys out as cannon fodder won’t change anything.”

The Han Jinhe trio relaxed somewhat due to the softening of Zhou Yuan’s attitude. Although Zhou Yuan was implying they weren’t strong enough, they had already withdrawn their prideful attitudes after being intimidated. After some serious consideration, they felt that Zhou Yuan’s words were not unreasonable. 

“The captain has the authority to command all of the Tianyuan Region’s forces. If there are too many people in this position, it will lead to confusion and chaos. For the sake of the big picture, I have to refuse your request.”

Zhou Yuan’s calm voice and kindly eyes were a very effective combination.

However, he knew that if he had begun in this manner, the trio would have likely felt that he was easily bullied and would have tried to take advantage of him, something the unaffiliated practitioners were particularly adept at. But with the “big slap” given to them at the start, although the trio’s expressions were currently a little ugly, they had begun to accept Zhou Yuan’s reasoning for rejecting them.

The three felt somewhat downcast. After all, they had not only failed to get the job but had also been roughed up by Zhou Yuan. This was quite a blow to their confidence, and they did not know how they would face their supporters outside later.

Zhou Yuan cast a glance at them as he smiled faintly. “However, although I cannot give you three the captain position, I have acknowledged your strength. I will appoint you as vice captains with the authority to command your own teams. Of course, you’ll have to first run them through me and captain Qin Lian.”

The Tianyuan Region had recruited quite a number of unaffiliated cultivators. These cultivators were used to freedom and were untamable individuals. If he were to forcibly supervise them, it would make them more rebellious towards him. Hence, it would be better to hand the lot over to the Han Jinhe trio to manage. If any conflicts were to occur, he would have the trio take responsibility, and he might even have the chance to act as the good guy and win their hearts over.

As such, he had already planned to give this position to them. However, he could not yield it so easily at the start. He needed to first teach them a lesson so that they would obediently listen to his words and not cause more trouble.

Sure enough, the downcast trio immediately perked up at his words. They joyfully looked towards Zhou Yuan. “Vice captain?”

Zhou Yuan nodded and smiled. “If the three of you don’t feel that it’s beneath you, we shall proceed accordingly.”

The trio exchanged a look before nodding. Somewhat embarrassed, they said, “We were too hot-headed earlier. I hope that grand elder Zhou Yuan can forgive us.”

By this time, they had no choice but to submit. After all, there was not much time left till Guyuan Heaven opened, and after experiencing Zhou Yuan’s strength, they were now somewhat expectant towards his performance. If they could get a share of the rewards in Guyuan Heaven, being ordered around like a little brother would not be unacceptable.

Unaffiliated practitioners like them could endure anything in order for a chance to grow stronger.

Zhou Yuan smiled as he nodded. “You guys will be in charge of grouping the unaffiliated practitioners outside.”

The Han Jinhe trio nodded repeatedly as they patted their chests. “Don’t worry, grand elder Zhou Yuan. We will take care of everything.”

After finishing, they hurriedly exited the hall.

As he watched them leave, Zhou Yuan chuckled softly.

Qin Lian tilted her head to the side and clapped. A rare smile appeared on her beautiful but aloof face. “Grand elder Zhou Yuan’s carrot-and-stick approach has nearly reached perfection.”

Smiling, Zhou Yuan shrugged.

Qin Lian somewhat eagerly looked Zhou Yuan up and down. “But I’m even more curious about how strong you’ve grown. Shall we have a small match to test your strength?”

Previously, there had been a huge gap in strength between Zhou Yuan and Qin Lian. However, she could not sense a dangerous sensation from him. This undoubtedly drew out her competitive side.

Zhou Yuan’s heart shivered at the burning light in Qin Lian’s eyes. He hurriedly shook his head and quickly turned around to leave.

Boom!

However, just as he was about to lift his foot, an astonishing burst of Genesis Qi erupted behind him, then roared straight towards him.

    ...

While Zhou Yuan was dealing with the eager Qin Lian, the Han Jinhe trio had returned to the building.

Several hundred top-tier unaffiliated cultivors immediately crowded over at the sight of them.

“Brother Han, how did it go? Has the Tianyuan Region given you guys the captain position?”

Han Jinhe looked at the crowd with an indifferent face. “Relax everyone, the Tianyuan Region views us as a very important force. We fought hard with grand elder Zhou Yuan for everyone’s benefit.”

“Grand elder Zhou Yuan? He’s here?” Numerous unaffiliated cultivators gasped. Regardless of Zhou Yuan’s strength, his grand elder status drew respect, especially in the Tianyuan Region.

Han Jinhe smiled and nodded. “Grand elder Zhou Yuan’s reputation is well-deserved, and we even exchanged a few pointers with him. His strength is truly amazing, and I believe that under his and captain Qin Lian’s leadership, the Tianyuan Region team will certainly achieve good results in the upcoming Guyuan Heaven battle. We’ve definitely come to the right place.”

These words immediately drew astonished looks from the numerous unaffiliated cultivators. The three had exchanged pointers with Zhou Yuan? They clearly understood the trio’s strength. When they joined forces, they were able to put up a fight even against the Tianyuan Region’s strongest Heavenly Sun expert, Qin Lian. Wasn’t grand elder Zhou Yuan at the initial Heavenly Sun stage?

Why was Han Jinhe so full of praise for Zhou Yuan’s strength?

Uncertainty flickered in the eyes of the numerous unaffiliated cultivators, but no one doubted Han Jinhe’s words. After all, it was far too easy to uncover any lies. If it was true, Zhou Yuan had likely grown tremendously over the past few months.

This was not impossible. After all, he was supreme sovereign Cang Yuan’s personal disciple. Moreover, supreme sovereign Zhuan Zhu was currently overseeing the Tianyuan Region. As his junior brother, Zhou Yuan might have received some personal guidance.

At this thought, the numerous unaffiliated cultivators could not help but readjust their attitude. As unaffiliated cultivators, they thoroughly understood the importance of strength.

Han Jinhe nonchalantly said, “Hehe, since we already have such great captains, the three of us will not go after that position. Fortunately, grand elder Zhou Yuan regards us very highly and has asked us to take on the vice captain positions to specially take charge of all the unaffiliated cultivators. Everyone can come over to register with us. We still need to report to grand elder Zhou Yuan after the teams are formed.”

Xue Qingmei’s and Wang Su’s faces turned a little red. They had clearly been disciplined by Zhou Yuan, but the story had changed completely after Han Jinhe had told it.

However, the unaffiliated cultivators present did not scrutinize the story and were instead overjoyed. After all, they felt that the vice captain position was more or less the same, and following Han Jinhe and the others was better than someone else giving them orders.

Some of the affiliated cultivators who had been watching as bystanders secretly breathed a sigh of relief. They had not approved of Han Jinhe and the other’s intentions to become captains, but they had been powerless due to their strength and influence. They were, of course, also worried about their own interests like the Han Jinhe trio. Fortunately, the worst scenario had not occurred.

However, this scene made them think a little.

They knew that Han Jinhe was extremely prideful. Given how he now revered Zhou Yuan, it could only mean that Zhou Yuan had crushed their ambitions.

This made them both curious and happy.

If their guess was right, the Tianyuan Region might become one of the main Hunyuan Heaven teams in the Guyuan Heaven battle.

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