Li Kuanglan walked out calmly in a cloud of frosty mist. “Retreating without a battle? You’ve thrown away our empire’s face. Now that I’ve arrived, the two over there can forget about leaving.”
Eden grabbed the staggering vampire girl and pushed her behind him. He then pointed toward a tunnel on the side and indicated for her to leave first. He then said with a laugh, “You despicable and treacherous humans haven’t grown much in power over the millennium, but your bragging abilities seem to have made quite a lot of progress. I, Eden of the Dark Abyss, am right here. How do you plan on making me stay?”
Li Kuanglan slowly drew his sword. The cavern was immediately suffused with a deep chill the moment that translucent crystalline edge appeared, causing the temperature to plummet. The cave walls became covered in icicles in the blink of an eye.
Eden lost his calm at the sight of this sword. “A grade-eight sword!”
Weapons at grade-eight were so powerful that they would evidently affect their surroundings. The frost energy in this blade was akin to the tides—its vast area of effect and power made it seem like a domain unto itself. Apparently, it was a product at the pinnacle of grade-eight.
Eden and Nighteye would find this blade difficult to deal with even if it were in Xu Lang’s hands. Li Kuanglan was not only superior to the latter in terms of origin power, but his cultivation arts also complimented the sword quite well. It was capable of bringing out the weapon’s full might.
Eden took a step forward, blocked Nighteye behind him, and said, “I’ll obstruct him and you look for an opening to attack him. Run first if you have the chance.”
Li Kuanglan saw all of their movements. He shook Cold Moon’s Embrace and said, “You wish to escape?! I’m afraid it won’t be that easy!” At this moment, the frost energy had extended in all directions and frozen everything within several hundred meters.
Everyone found, to their astonishment, that not only did they have to resist the frost within this area, but even circulating their origin power had become difficult. Difficult origin power activation would affect one’s speed, making it difficult for Eden and Nighteye to escape. It was clear from how this frost energy was actually able to affect origin power circulation that the effects weren’t from Cold Moon’s Embrace alone—Li Kuanglan’s own domain was also in play.
Eden’s expression turned solemn. It would take a rare genius level character to utilize domains in this accursed place.
“Off with your heads!” Cold Moon Embrace swept out in a crescent arc, shooting several ribbons of aqua-blue radiance toward Nighteye and Eden. These light ribbons condensed from frost energy were incomparably beautiful. They left cuts on everything they passed, and cut through several centimeters of stone like tofu.
Eden let out a loud cry as the air several dozen meters around him became suffused with black mist. A fierce contest ensued as it came into contact with the frost energy, and the two powers eroded one another amidst sizzling noises.
Only a part of the aqua-blue brilliance was canceled out before it flooded in and tore apart the black mist. It then pressed on with undeterred momentum and arrived before Eden in the blink of an eye.
The latter was greatly alarmed because he had never imagined that he would lose so quickly in a contest of domains. He was caught completely off-guard and could only activate his origin defenses to defend against the onslaught of the blue light.
It was at this time that Li Kuanglan felt a sharp pain in his chest. His origin power fell into chaos, and the blue radiance attacking Eden actually lost control.
Li Kuanglan roared loudly and erupted with origin power. The frost energy overflowed like a hazy mist and suppressed the abnormality in his body. At the same time, he raised Cold Moon’s Embrace to his forehead.
A dark origin bullet tore through the air like a specter. It made not the slightest of sounds and even the origin power around it was indistinct. Li Kuanglan’s might’ve overlooked this lethal attack had it not been for his domain enveloping the entire area.
The round bullet flew toward the almost translucent edge of Cold Moon’s Embrace and split into two even before coming into actual contact. The remnant halves of the projectile flew out to either side of Li Kuanglan’s face and punched into the cave wall.
Li Kuanglan lowered his sword gradually with a sharp glint in his eyes. “This is… an eye ability? Marvelous! Now that’s someone worthy of being my opponent. But you’re too weak right now. Leave and we shall fight again when you’ve matured. But I’m only letting you go this once, you can only blame your bad fortune if you run into me again!”
“She’s the princess of the Monroe clan. You can’t let her go!” Xu Lang cried out from behind.
“Scram! I don’t need you to tell me what to do!” Li Kuanglan didn’t leave Xu Lang any face, and neither did he pay any heed to the latter’s uniform and Red Scorpion insignia.
Xu Lang’s expression turned ashen and roared furiously, “This is war! Not one of your little games! If you don’t kill her now, who knows how many imperial soldiers will die during her growth? There’s no mercy in war!”
Li Kuanglan replied coldly, “What do you know about true war? The outcome of this war is currently decided in a confrontation between the heavenly monarchs and great dark monarchs. In the future, it will hinge upon the sword in my hand. As long as I can further sharpen my blade, any number of cannon fodder like you is worth sacrificing.”
Xu Lang shouted, “Who are you?! How dare you speak such words?!”
Presently, he was a general in Red Scorpion and a respected character in the imperial army. When had he ever suffered such treatment? Even the arrogant clan descendants wouldn’t criticize an elite corps general to his face. That was because doing so would end up offending not just a single officer but the entire military.
Li Kuanglan shot him a glance and broke into a laugh. “You’d naturally know if you were capable enough. I can tell that you’ve been muddling along since you don’t even know who I am. You still dare to run your mouth here? This young noble is in a good mood after encountering a future opponent, so I’ll spare you today. Now scram! You’ll find out who I am after advancing a couple more ranks.”
Xu Lang wasn’t expecting such a response. His face soon turned from one of anger into terror.
Li Kuanglan’s words weren’t without reason. Xu Lang had only touched the outer border of the military circle. Compared to the understanding of the noble clans, his knowledge was merely at the level of an outsider. There were many deeper things he didn’t quite know, especially when it came to the imperial family. This thought served to reduce his wrath as he stood there pondering his options.
Li Kuanglan paid no more heed to him and glanced back at the other side—Eden was preparing to leave, but Nighteye remained motionless. He said with a frown, “Why aren’t you leaving? This young noble might change his mind after a while.”
At this time, a fishy wind arose from a distant tunnel. The blood energy therein was so intense that it was nauseating. This blood energy was filled with the stench of death and decay, a stark contrast from Nighteye’s which was fragrant, sweet, and full of vitality. It could even be said that they were polar opposites.
A raspy voice echoed from the direction of the blood energy. “It’s no use even if you change your mind. Now let’s see if you yourself can leave!”
The blood energy grew denser and denser until the rolling tides of blood came into view. It clashed fiercely with Li Kuanlgan’s frost energy, and the two began consuming one another. A domain battle had broken out even before the newcomer had revealed himself.
The outcome was more or less a draw. Li Kuanglan’s combination of domain and sword energy held a slight advantage. However, the blood energy covered a greater area and turned the tables in terms of quantity.
Marquis Yuri walked out from amidst the rolling tides. The sword intent in Li Kuanglan’s eyes grew brighter after seeing the rose and snake insignia on his collar. A marquis of the Perth clan couldn’t be underestimated, regardless of the situation. The sword intent on Li Kuanglan’s body surged boundlessly as he became one with the sword, turning into a murderous weapon of tangible coldness.
In a showdown between experts at their level, everything in their domains would be destroyed indiscriminately. Both Eden and Xu Lang released their own domains as they retreated quickly amidst the collision of blood and sword energies. Although their domains were destroyed immediately after taking form, the moment of obstruction allowed them to escape successfully.
A fierce battle erupted abruptly but also ended in a flash.
Frost and blood energies pervaded every corner of the cavern within a hundred-meter radius. During the moment shorter than a blink, both domains constantly broke down, repaired themselves, shattered, then restored themselves again. This went on several times. Li Kuanglan and Yuri were fighting arduously at the center of the domain, but nothing could be seen clearly apart from the destruction and rebirth of the red and blue energies.
Nighteye stood silently at the border of their colliding domains. Dense blood energy lined with faint golden threads rippled around her body. Although her domain was only enough to cover the area she had been standing in, it stood unyieldingly against the onslaught of the red and blue energies.
Within the domain was a fierce lion-like beast with several ribbons flying wildly behind its head. This beast formed of blood energy seemed quite spiritual. It darted around like a bolt of lightning, slashing apart the blood energy and sword intent that managed to invade her domain.
Li Kuanglan and Yuri separated from their fierce battle.
The former shot a glance at Yuri, then sheathed Cold Moon’s Embrace, and left with a heavy snort. Xu Lang, who had been watching from a distance, also left after seeing that there was nothing he could do.
Yuri remained standing in place, but the arrogant expression he had worn during his appearance was gone, replaced by a serious countenance. His face became much more relaxed after Li Kuanglan’s figure vanished into the distant tunnel.
A clear winner wasn’t decided in the battle just now. Both of them felt rather apprehensive of the other, so they decided to stop fighting and go their own ways.
The relationship between the factional experts had undergone some subtle changes under the looming shadow of Sky Demon’s avatars and vicious aboriginals. They no longer sought to kill each other at all costs and would also try to reduce meaningless losses when evenly matched.
Eden breathed a sigh of relief after Li Kuanglan had left. However, he kept his eye on Yuri as he walked over to Nighteye. Apparently, he hadn’t relaxed his vigilance at all.
Yuri glance at Eden and said, “Your Excellency Eden, I have something to say to Her Majesty Nighteye. It’ll be best if you step back.”
Eden had no intention of leaving. “On the contrary, I think I need to listen to what you have to say. Moreover, my presence might prevent certain accidents from happening.”
Yuri stared fixedly at Eden with a bloody murderous intent leaking out from his eyes. The former hadn’t withdrawn his domain at this moment, and, although he hadn’t launched a direct attack, the pressure was enough to cause Eden’s expression to shift slightly. Yet, the latter remained standing in place despite the great effort involved.
Yuri’s momentum suddenly relaxed as his killing intent dissipated. “I come representing the Queen of the Night and the Holy Son. Are you still intent on listening?”
“The will of the Queen of the Night isn’t necessarily useful against my Dark Abyss,” Eden replied.
Yuri’s smile became eerily distorted. “The same can be said for you. The Dark Abyss or even the will of that revered person on the sacred mountain might not necessarily be useful against our sacred blooded race.”
Eden’s expression sank. As a pureblood demonkin born of a famed clan, he had never put the other races in his mind. Were it not for this strange world and the council mission at hand, he might’ve fallen out with Yuri despite his strength.
Nighteye stopped Eden and said, “Your Excellency Yuri, you probably weren’t on the Giant’s Repose roster. So, pray tell, what is the Holy Son’s message?”Previous Chapter Next Chapter