Chapter 116: Why Does No One Believe Me?

The crowd was baffled by the sudden shout, unable to comprehend what was going on.

On the dueling ring, however, Wu Di’s body shuddered. What’s going on? Why does someone know my real name?

One must know that a middle-aged man like him wasn’t qualified to participate in this Clans Tournament. For that reason, he wore the mask made by a runemaster to disguise himself as a youth.

There were so many eyes looking at him right now. If his identity were to be revealed right here, not even Governor Sang Hong or the Sunspring Duke would be able to cover him. There was no way the Brightmoon Duke would let this matter go easily. On top of that, for foiling the plans of the Wu clan and Yuan clan, he would surely be punished harshly when he returned.

Did something happen to my mask? Wu Di subconsciously reached out to touch his face.

This brief moment of hesitation caused his attacks to pause for a brief moment. Chu Chuyan’s body was already cloaked in a layer of blue snow, enhancing her movement speed greatly. Her body blurred into a silhouette and pierced right through Wu Di’s sword of inferno, only to stop right before his throat.

“You’ve lost!” Chu Chuyan looked at Wu Di with clear eyes as she said calmly.

Wu Di was astonished. While his concentration did wander for an instant, it should have been impossible for Chu Chuyan to pierce through his sword of inferno and ki armor. Yet, all of his defenses were shredded in the blink of an eye.

What’s going on? Is her cultivation not only at the fifth rank? But how could that be possible?!

At this moment, Chu Chuyan’s face had started to turn unnaturally red. In order to gather sufficient burst power to pierce through Wu Di’s defenses, she had to utilize a forbidden art, resulting in her sustaining severe internal injuries.

She glanced down the stage, only to see Zu An looking at her with a smile. If not for his shout distracting Di Wu earlier, I might have already… Was it calculated, or was it just a coincidence?

The official from the City Lord Estate declared, “The victor of the seventh round is Chu Chuyan!”

“Objection!” After seeking affirmation from Wu Wei and his father, Yuan Wendogn leaped onto the dueling ring, pointed at Zu An, and said, “The Chu clan has cheated in the fight. Zu An’s sudden shout affected the performance of our fighter!”

How could the Wu clan and Yuan clan not be furious? One must know that Wu Di was their greatest trump card in this Clans Tournament! They had even bore the risk of disguising him so as to have him defeat the pride of the Chu clan, crushing their morale once and for all. Yet, it was all foiled due to the interference of a brat.

The powerhouses spectating the duel had slight frowns on their foreheads. They were busy contemplating the situation that they weren’t able to give their judgment right away.

So, Zu An made use of this opportunity to speak up, “Oh? I’m afraid I’m having difficulties understanding what you’re driving at. I simply exclaimed aloud because I’m hungry, and yet it affected your fighter’s performance? I must say, is this the level of concentration a sixth rank cultivator has?”

Loud cheerings echde from the spectators. Clearly, most of the crowd was more supportive of the beautiful Chu Chuyan. They felt that the reasons the Yuan clan came up with were too forced.

Zu An’s argument agitated Yuan Wendong as he argued furiously, “You weren’t just exclaiming casually. You clearly shouted Wu Di…”

The moment those words poured out of his mouth, Yuan Wendong’s heart skipped a beat. He knew he had screwed up.

Zu An didn’t hesitate to capitalize on Yuan Wendong’s mistake. ”Yes, I’m pretty sure I shouted ‘Wu Di, your mum is calling you back for dinner’, not ‘Di Wu’. I don’t understand why he would react to those words. Or does this mean to say that his true name isn’t Di Wu but Wu Di?”

“A load of rubbish!” The flustered Yuan Wendong roared in rebuttal. How could Zu An know Wu Di’s true identity? This doesn’t make sense!

You have successfully trolled Yuan Wendong for +868 Rage!

Di Wu? Wu Di?

Chu Zhongtian silently mumbled those words under his breath when a thought flashed across his mind. “I heard that there’s a member of the Wu clan named Wu Di, and he’s a sixth rank cultivator too. It just so happens that he cultivates a flame element cultivation technique too.”

Chu Chuyan immediately caught his drift. She immediately reached for Wu Di’s face, ready to claw out any mask he had on.

It was then that Wu Wei moved and landed right on the dueling ring. Chu Chuyan felt a powerful force rushing up her sword, forcing her back. Fortunately, Chu Zhongtian appeared at this moment and neutralized the force jolting her before exchanging palm strokes with Wu Wei.

Bam!

A powerful force ravaged the surroundings, leaving the spectating crowd tumbling to the ground. A huge cloud of dust was stirred into the air.

When the dust finally settled down once more, the dueling ring was already completely cracked, looking as if it was on the verge of crumbling at any moment.

Zu An was alarmed to see this. It’s said that eighth rank cultivators are able to tap into the natural energy of the world. Is this the prowess they wield?

He was still feeling triumphant that he had turned into a little superman, but compared to the prowess of these top-level experts, his strength seemed nothing much in comparison.

“Stinky brother-in-law! You took advantage of me again!” Chu Huanzhao shoved the man crushing down on her body away before glaring at him angrily.

Zu An turned over with a look of indignance on his face. “I only stood in front of you because I was afraid that you would get injured. How can that be considered as taking advantage of you?”

Chu Huanzhao harrumphed in response. “I’m already a third rank cultivator, what about you? Why would I possibly need a weakling like you to shield me? You’re obviously taking advantage of me here!”

Zu An laughed awkwardly in response. He misjudged the level of threat from the earlier shockwave. Somehow, he thought that Chu Huanzhao was far weaker than he was, so he tried to shield her under his body. However, it would be hard for him to explain this to her at the moment.

Chu Huanzhao’s face reddened as she compromised, “Alright alright, I know that you’re doing this for me. However, you shouldn’t be so reckless in the future. I’m the one who should be protecting you!”

Seeing that Chu Huanzhao was no longer angry anymore, Zu An laughed it off and said, “I would love nothing more than that. Oh? I see some dust on your chest area. Come, let me pat it off for you.”

“Scram!” Chu Huanzhao spat at him.

Meanwhile, on the dueling ring, Chu Zhongtian glared at the opposite Wu Wei with livid eyes as he questioned, “Wu Wei, what do you mean by this?”

“Since the victor has been decided, why bother pushing this matter on?” Wu Wei shielded Wu Di behind him as he spoke calmly. That Yuan Wendong sure is a brainless dolt! He nearly gave Wu Di’s identity away earlier on!

Sang Hong also stepped onto the dueling ring to stand between the two of them. “Indeed. Since the victor has been decided, there’s no reason to sully the harmony here. It would only reflect badly on the royal court if two dukes of our dynasty fight it out in public like this.”

Chu Zhongtian’s face darkened further. He could tell that Sang Hong was protecting the Wu clan here.

It was then that City Lord Xie Yi interjected too. “Yuan Zhengchu, do you all admit defeat for this match?”

Yuan Zhengchu knew better than to argue over the win and loss of this match at a time like this. He quickly nodded and said, “Yes, we admit defeat for this match.”

Even though they were currently lagging behind 3:4, the remaining two matches were sure wins for them. There was no need for them to fuss too much about it over here.

Xie Yi nodded with a smile and said, “That’s good. Let’s move on to the next round then. Principal Jiang, what are your thoughts?”

As someone from King Qi’s faction, he was more than happy to see the royal court cornering the Chu clan. It would be best if the Chu clan was utterly cornered and left with no choice but to join their faction.

Hmph, you wish to steer clear of everything and survive till the end? How could there be something that convenient?

Jiang Luofu hesitated for a brief moment before nodding in agreement, “I have no objections here.”

With her wits, she could easily see the schemes that were being played by the Wu clan and Yuan clan. However, the academy had never gotten itself involved in political strife, and strictly speaking, they were also a subsidiary of the royal court too. It made no sense for her to oppose Sang Hong publicly.

Hearing her words, Wu Wei said with a smile, “Brightmoon Duke, are you going to question the verdict of our three judges?”

Chu Zhongtian was reluctant to let this matter rest, but he felt utterly helpless here. It was as if everyone here was down to get them. For the first time, he started wondering if he had erred in his decision. However, the Chu clan had survived throughout the generations by maintaining a neutral stance. With this in mind, he decided to grit his teeth and persevere.

“Fine, let’s move on to the next round then!”

It was a huge loss for the Chu clan to lose the arms market, but it was not a crippling blow to them. The Chu clan was more reliant on the salt trade in the end.

Furthermore, they had a lot of connections and supply routes that they had built up over the years. It was not something that the Yuan clan could hope to subvert within a short period of time.

“Father, don’t be too pessimistic. It’s not certain that Huanzhao might lose. Even if she fights to a draw, we’ll still stand a chance.”

Chu Chuyan forced herself to maintain her poise despite feeling a surge of blood gushing up her throat. Taking a deep breath, she consoled her father silently.

Currently, the Chu clan was leading by 4:3. The best-case scenario was for Chu Huanzhao to win the battle, but even if she fought it down to a draw, the Chu clan would still stand a chance. If the eventual result was a tie, they would determine the final winner through having each side elect a fighter onto the dueling ring. If it came down to that, it would be the Chu clan’s victory.

Of course, both Chu Chuyan and Chu Zhongtian were treating Zu An’s match to already be a loss.

“You’re right!” Chu Zhongtian perked up his spirit. He walked over to Chu Huanzhao’s side and began giving her some pointers, hoping that this last minute cramming could do some good.

Chu Huanzhao was still in a daze at the moment. She never thought that she would carry the fate of the Chu clan on her shoulders. Feeling deeply unconfident, she said, “I think my opponent is likely to have a higher cultivation rank than me.”

“He’s stronger than you, but it’s a gap that can be bridged. As long as you use the ability of your Wailing Whip well, you would still stand a good chance.”

Zu An also nodded in agreement. He had tasted the prowess of Chu Huanzhao’s whip himself. The electrifying sensation as the whip struck down on my body… Ah, it’s an experience never to be forgotten.

Chu Huanzhao was still panicking. “But… what if I fail to hit the enemy? Big sister, you also know the limitations of my strength! Even though I’ve been abusing my strength to bully Zu An, still, to fight on a dueling ring is…”

She was starting to regret just how she had idled her time away. She should have paid more focus to her training.

On the other hand, Zu An was left utterly speechless as well. Why do arrows still fly my way even when I’m not doing or saying anything at al?!

Qin Wanru grabbed her hand and said grimly, “Huanzhao, this battle concerns the future of the Chu clan. No matter what, you must try your best!”

Due to how serious the matter was, her voice was also much sterner than usual.

Chu Huanzhao vehemently nodded her head. Her tenacity had been spurred by those words. She bit her lips a little anxiously as she replied firmly, “Yes, I’ll definitely win the match. I won’t let father or mother down.”

Zu An was a little shocked to see the determined look on Chu Huanzhao’s face. Wait a moment, will this lass try to desperately hold on during the fight later on? This matter concerns the Chu clan’s future, so Chu Zhongtian and Qin Wanru won’t intervene until the very final moment. What if she gets afflicted with some irrecoverable injuries or traumas?

Seeing the humongous amount of pressure being heaped on Chu Huanzhao, Zu An stepped forward and said, “Huanzhao, don’t feel too pressured here. If you feel like things are going awry, just admit defeat. Don’t worry, I’m here.”

“No one will think of you as mute if you don’t speak!” Qin Wanru raged at Zu An. It wasn’t easy for her to spur her younger daughter’s motivation, but this fellow was actually trying to undo her efforts!

You have successfully trolled Qin Wanru for +404 Rage!

Chu Zhongtian also frowned as well. “Zu An, it’s a good thing for you if Huanzhao wins too. You don’t stand much of a chance against Yuan Wendong.”

Zu An was utterly frustrated by the lack of trust in him. “But I really do think that I can win the match.”

Previous Chapter Next Chapter

starvecleric's Thoughts

Whee we're still working things out, but we might be getting an editor on this novel soon (like 1 or 2 days later ~~)
Based on what I've seen thus far, his work is really quite good, like he rewrites sentences to bring focus on parts that ought to be further highlighted while picking up the errors, so you can look forward to higher quality works in the future~
He'll be focusing on editing from chapter 1 onward first though, so it'll take a while for him to catch up

-Starve, 23 Jan