Chapter 619: Embrace of Death, Part Two

Zu An was stunned at first, but snapped to alertness when the hand touched his shoulder.

One hand was on his shoulder, pulling him into the garden, while the other hand wrapped around his neck. If this person wanted him dead, he would be dead for sure.

Ordinarily, a cultivator would not be able to put up a fight if their shoulder pressure point was restrained. However, how could a cheat like him be compared to an ordinary cultivator?

He immediately used his Heaven-Devouring Sutra. A powerful suction force appeared around his shoulder, neutralizing the ki around that hand restraining him.

“Hm?” a female voice exclaimed in surprise. Whoever it was, she hadn’t expected this strange suction force to appear.

With his life in imminent danger, Zu An could hardly be bothered by the gender of his attacker.

He twisted his shoulder, immediately employing the Entangling Feathersilk Art that Pei Mianman had taught him. He slid from her grasp like a loach, then followed up by sliding up her arm to grab her neck.

With an angry huff and a wave of her hand, the woman slapped away his encroaching arm, and then struck at his forehead with her fingers.

You want to play around with finger techniques? I’m good at that too! Zu An immediately struck back with his Shining Finger.

Anger flashed within the woman’s eyes when she saw that her fingers had been stopped by a man. With a snap of her flexible wrist, she retaliated, sending a force shooting through her own fingers.

Zu An felt his own fingers go numb, and he lost his grip. Before he could process what had happened, the other party had already attacked.

The two of them exchanged several dozen blows within the confines of the rock garden, each strike containing a vicious amount of force.

Zu An was overcome with shock. After absorbing Mosquito Daoist’s cultivation, he was considered a powerful cultivator, and had been easily able to dispatch the elite assassins from the Shadow Group.

He didn’t know what it was with this woman. Her aura was rather unstable, and, judging by her current strength, she was around the sixth or seventh rank at most. She even seemed to be injured. Why wasn’t he able to deal with her?

The woman was equally astonished. After all, she rarely met someone who was a match for her, yet now, despite her opponent clearly having much less experience than her, she was still unable to subdue him.

Even though she was seriously injured, she still retained her sight, her experiences, and her extensive techniques. She would have had no problem going up against anyone beneath the eighth rank.

Not only that, but she had caught him unprepared!

She cursed inwardly. She had been gunning for his Embroidered Envoy uniform, because it would make moving around much easier, but she never expected him to be such a tough nut to crack.

The rock garden was exceedingly cramped, and they were employing both their arms and legs to fight, resulting in their bodies tangling around each other quite often. At first, she hadn’t minded it that much, since she fully expected him to soon be dead. As the fight went on, however, she felt more and more as though she was being taken advantage of.

She wanted desperately to leave the confined space, but she was dragged back in as soon as she tried to get out.

She couldn’t help but grind her teeth. Was this fellow really planning to take advantage of her?

Someone possessing her cultivation realm and temperament wasn’t so easily fazed, however, and she quickly calmed down. She reasoned that her opponent was only confining their battle to this narrow space not so that he could make advances on her, but because he was afraid that their fight would become more unpredictable in a more spacious area.

As she was reasoning this out, a vicious expression flashed across Zu An’s eyes. His fine hairs were standing on end, and his mind was tight with concentration. He knew that his life could be extinguished if he made even the slightest misstep.

His attention was focused on a razor’s edge. He didn’t even notice the Rage points he was receiving.

He wasn’t about to hold back anything. “Whatcha starin’ at?”

“I’m staring at you, shithead!” the woman replied subconsciously.

A bewildered expression immediately appeared on her face.

While she was still in shock, Zu An wrapped her in his arms and activated the Heaven-Devouring Sutra, madly trying to absorb her cultivation.

This was how he killed Mosquito Daoist! He called it—the Embrace of Death!

The two of them were pressed tightly against each other, leaving the woman both shocked and furious. She abandoned all reservations. She raised her hand, and a streak of vicious light appeared.

As soon as it appeared, however, it vanished without a trace.

Again, the woman was left bewildered.

However, it took her mere moments to realize that her opponent was using a strange technique to siphon away her cultivation. Some of the ki flowing along the surface of her body had already been absorbed.

Now was not the time for embarrassment. She quickly focused her mind, solidifying her ki reserves to counter her opponent’s powerful siphoning attack.

All was going smoothly for Zu An at first, but a frown quickly appeared on his face. He wasn’t able to siphon off any more of her ki!

The other party’s ki foundation was incredibly firm. It seemed like a massive mountain that just refused to be absorbed. He could siphon away some loose silt, but that did little to affect the solidity of the mountain.

Of course, if he continued this for a few decades, he might just be able to siphon all of it away, but such a scenario was hardly realistic.

On the flip side, the woman was equally shaken. She had dominated the world for such a long time. Was she really going to be done in by an unnamed embroidered envoy?

With her body so tightly restrained, and the powerful suction force tearing away at her, she couldn’t muster any strength to retaliate, and could only continue to defend her foundation to prevent him from siphoning it all away.

Thankfully, her cultivation was much higher than his, so her cultivation remained and she kept her foundation. If not, she might have been cleaned out.

How could there be such a terrifying, demonic technique in this world? Huh, could this be Mosquito Daoist? Wait, no… Mosquito Daoist is a woman. Is this her protégé? Or perhaps someone else from the blood race? Why would the emperor make someone of the blood race an Embroidered Envoy…? Her mind soon clouded over with these random, disturbing thoughts.

A sudden surge swept through her blood essence and her ki. Her previous injuries flared, causing her to cough out blood, which coated the inner surface of her mask.

Zu An was overjoyed to sense his opponent’s once-solid defenses crumbling, and immediately pressed his attack.

A flash of resolve crossed the woman’s eyes when she sensed her foundation flowing out of her. In that case, she would just take this man down with her!

Zu An could feel that victory was in sight. However, as soon as he relaxed slightly, he suddenly noticed that the woman in his arms had extremely long hair.

He would have facepalmed if he could.

What a pain in the ass! I didn’t even recognize her!

The rock garden was dim and cramped, and he hadn’t really gotten a good look at her. He’d been on the brink of death since he was dragged in as well, and hadn’t been focused on anything else but surviving.

He stopped siphoning her foundation at once. “Are you Yun Jianyue?” he asked.

The woman’s resolve hardened even further when she heard him speak her name.  With her pride at stake, how could she possibly allow herself to become a prisoner?

Zu An suddenly sensed her internal ki surge, as though a terrifying force was about to erupt. Frightened and anxious, he immediately said, “I’m Qiu Honglei’s friend!”

“Honglei?” The woman was stunned. She wasn’t expecting this person to bring up her disciple.

Zu An was relieved when he sensed the terrifying power subside slightly. “Yes, I just rescued her and escorted her out of the palace. She asked me to find you and rescue you.”

“When did Honglei become friends with an Embroidered Envoy?” A thought suddenly struck Yun Jianyue. “You’re the Embroidered Envoy who survived my sword?”

Given her status and cultivation, she couldn’t care less if he was a golden-, silver- or bronze-token envoy, all embroidered envoys were the same, and not worth remembering.

Zu An laughed awkwardly. “Your memory is excellent, senior.”

Yun Jianyue was now ninety percent convinced. “Hmph, I should’ve just killed you back then. If I did, I wouldn’t be in this miserable state.”

She felt rather despondent. She could have killed him with a single blow before, yet the situation had changed so quickly. She was now his captive.

Zu An was surprised, reading between the lines. “You showed mercy back then?”

Yun Jianyue sneered. “If I hadn’t noticed that you used Mirror Mirage, do you think you would still be alive?”

Mirror Mirage was one of her secret skills, and she had only passed it down to her disciple, Qiu Honglei. That was why she was shocked when she saw him use it, and directed her flying sword a few inches wide.

Fear still lingered as Zu An recalled the incident. “My luck really is pretty good.”

Yun Jianyue was just about to say something when a guard’s voice rang out. “Who’s there?”

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