Chapter 388: The Dead Cannot Speak

The massive Wu swordsman’s eyes were filled with hostile intent as he glared at Li Mo. During his bout with him in the seven cities’ tournament, they seemed to be fighting at about the same level. Then, somehow, a mysterious force knocked them both off the stage. He had been eliminated without being able to do anything about it. The matter weighed on his heart like a heavy burden, so when he saw Li Mo amidst the guests, he extended a challenge to him without any hesitation. 

“Well? You don’t dare to face me?” The swordsman taunted Li Mo, seeing that he was still seated and without any intention of stepping on stage.

Many of the gathered guests had also attended the seven cities’ tournament, and many were rather doubtful about what had happened near the climax. As a result, they were all very interested in seeing the continuation of their bout. “Go on, go on! Finish the match that was interrupted!”

“Everyone, Young Master Li is a guest of the Feng family. He has the right to choose not to participate, and I hope you won’t force or pressure him to do so,” Feng Yicheng said, standing up.

“In that case, Young Master Feng, why don’t you challenge the Wu swordsman on his behalf?” Pi Batian called out. “After all, you’re the victor of the seven cities’ tournament, and it would hardly be inappropriate to ask for a demonstration of your skills.

“Right! None of us could really see what was happening during the conclusion of the fight, and it was a waste of three hundred spirit crystals!” someone jeered.

“Now’s a good chance to see who the true victor should be, isn’t it? Otherwise, we’ll all have to ask for a refund on our admission fees from the Feng family, haha!” another person called out jokingly.

Feng Yicheng frowned at the swordsman on stage. He was already a first-rank sword saint, and Feng Yicheng would be no match for him. However, the guests present at the banquet seemed as though they wouldn’t be satisfied until someone stepped up to face the man. He was trying to think of a strategy to deal with him when a man’s voice interrupted the guests’ shouts. 

“In that case, I’ll accept your challenge.” Li Mo stood up, his gaze still focused on Yun Ruoyan. She had remained silent throughout the banquet, trying to speak as little as possible and to keep her head lowered. When Li Mo looked back, however, she raised her head and met his eyes with a smile.

At the same time, the crowd’s gaze landed on Yun Ruoyan. Two of the most pointed came from Pi Yan and Pi Batian. After a restful month, Yun Ruoyan’s looks had returned to her original beauty. Her face and skin glowed a healthy pink, and her red dress accentuated her petite frame. Because she had been trying to hide herself, this was the first time the crowd noticed the woman in earnest. Once their eyes found her, however, it was hard for them to turn away.

Only when Li Mo had walked on stage did the crowd’s attention turn back to center stage, but there were still quite a few glances focused on Yun Ruoyan.

Pi Yan stared at Yun Ruoyan with some shock and incredulity. Despite having been told from the silver dragon clan elder himself how strong the demonic dragon clan’s self-recovery ability was, he still harbored some doubts in his mind. However, Yun Ruoyan’s current appearance had dismissed them entirely.

Another ardent gaze directed her way came from Lie Sen, the young master of the Lie family. All sorts of beauties were gathered beside him, but his harem didn’t consist of any so petite and sunny as Yun Ruoyan herself. Lie Sen, self-proclaimed connoisseur of women, had never seen Yun Ruoyan’s like, and he found his gaze stuck to her body.

Yun Ruoyan could sense the two men fixated on her. She lowered her head, waiting for them to turn away, but they clearly didn’t seem to notice or care. Because of how focused they were on her, quite a few other guests began looking her way again, as though even the fighting going on on stage couldn’t draw their attention away.

Yun Ruoyan couldn’t help feel a little annoyed. She raised her head again and stared archly at Pi Yan, whose gaze was the most malicious of all. As their eyes met, Yun Ruoyan refused to back down or show any weakness, just like when they fought each other.

Yun Ruoyan was petite, but her aura was anything but. Even against a hegemon of the Mingyuan continent, her gaze didn’t lose out.

Pi Yan’s eyes turned colder and colder, and a half-sneer formed on his face. He finally turned away from Yun Ruoyan to center stage, promising himself to capture that upstart woman tonight.

Yun Ruoyan then turned to Lie Sen. He was still staring at her, besotted by her charming appearance, when Yun Ruoyan suddenly looked her way with the same eyes with which she had rebuffed Pi Yan. Cold sweat instantly beaded on Lie Sen’s forehead, and his whole body trembled as he fell back in shock.

“Ah!” he gasped. If not for the swordsmen behind him reacting in time, he would have fallen off his seat.

Yun Ruoyan hadn’t expected to provoke such a strong reaction, and Lie Sen’s sorry figure caused her to smile, thawing the coldness of her gaze and highlighting her sparkling gaze.

Lie Sen righted himself with a look of embarrassment on his face. When he turned toward Yun Ruoyan again, her head was again lowered.

Meanwhile, on stage, the match between the two men was just about to begin. Perhaps because the two cultivators had already fought each other and were more or less aware of each other’s skills, they didn’t spend too much time trying to test or prod each other.

The Wu swordsman, with a loud shout, encased his body in the golden glow of his spiritual energy, a sign that he had raised his cultivation to his maximum capacity. Li Mo could see that the man was a first-rank sword saint, so he also released sufficient spiritual energy to reflect that level of cultivation. His black robe, amidst his expulsion of spiritual energy, began to billow around him.

A fight between two first-rank sword saints was shocking in terms of just their auras alone. Swordsmen from the seven families stepped forward to protect their young masters and young misses, preventing them from any incidental damage from the two fighters’ auras. 

With another shout, the Wu swordsman pulled out a golden broadsword, which he slashed in Li Mo’s direction. A maximum-power strike from a gold-attuned first-rank sword saint had the power to split mountains, and the wind from the strike caused the cups and bowls on the guests’ tables to rattle.

The blinding glow from his attack made the guests wince, but after what had happened at the conclusion of the seven cities’ tournament, they bore with the pain as they continued staring on center stage. The moment that golden broadsword, crackling with lightning, was about to hit Li Mo, a blue-green gleam appeared in Li Mo’s hands. The two swords again clashed with each other, casting off such bright sparks that the onlookers were forced to clutch their eyes in pain.

This time, however, the conclusion of the match was visible in a matter of moments. After just a few breaths, the blue-green gleam of Li Mo’s sword quickly eclipsed the Wu swordsman’s golden-yellow glow, swallowing it up in its entirety.

As the blinding light subsided, the guests hurriedly removed their hands from their eyes.

“That Li fellow’s this powerful? He managed to gain the upper hand in just a few breaths!” The crowd was shocked: the standoff had lasted far longer during the seven cities’ tournament. Memories of the fight resurfaced in the crowd’s mind. Li Mo had seemed to have a hard time countering the man before, but this time, he suppressed him with barely any effort at all.

“Could he have broken through in this short period of time?!” someone wondered.

“No, that’s impossible! He’s already a sword saint, so how could he have broken through again just like that?” 

“In that case, how do you explain what’s going on? Last time, he and the Wu swordsman clearly seemed to be equals, but now, he’s dominating the fight!”

“There’s only one possible explanation: that Li fellow was hiding his true strength all along.”

Actually, this wasn’t difficult to guess; it was simply that the seven cities’ tournament was so prestigious and important that none of the onlookers would ever imagine that someone would hide their true power even then.

“You… hid your true strength… that last time?!” The Wu swordsman was the first to notice something amiss. He and Li Mo weren’t anywhere close to being equals! “Why? Could you have… been in cahoots with the Feng family… all this time?” 

The Wu swordsman’s face was red from trying to resist the spiritual pressure of Li Mo’s aura. Gritting his teeth, he forced out, “The Feng family is truly treacherous. Was the reason you left the Pi family because you were guilty?”

It wasn’t a secret that Li Mo had left the Pi family; the Pis had pursued him rather publicly. When this Wu swordsman heard about the news, he thought that Li Mo had only run off because he had lost the tournament. Now, however, he realized that Li Mo had been against the Pi family all along.

Li Mo narrowed his eyes, killing intent flashing through his eyes. He hadn’t wanted to kill the man—after all, a first-rank sword saint was an impressive existence even among the seven families, and killing him would undoubtedly incur the wrath of the Wu family.

Li Mo and the others would have to remain on the Mingyuan continent for at least two more years, so it wouldn’t be wise to have too many enemies. However, if the man’s words were to spread, not only would it affect the Feng family, it would severely impact his future actions and reputation on the Mingyuan continent.

After thinking it over for a moment, Li Mo decided to kill the man. He immediately advanced his cultivation to that of a second-rank sword saint, and his sword gave off a dragon’s roar. The blue-green gleam suddenly turned a startling white, blinding all in range. 

“Argh! My eyes!” Some of the hardier guests in the crowd tried to open their eyes, only to feel as though a multitude of sharp needles were being thrust into their eyes. The intense pain forced them to shut their eyes and cover them with their hands once more.

The incandescent light also forced the Wu swordsman’s eyes closed. Just as he groaned in pain and shielded himself, his body was knocked off the stage by a massive force, followed by a dramatic thud, all sorts of plates and bowls cracking, and the panicked screaming of a number of guests.

By the time the light vanished, the guests found the Wu swordsman sprawled over Pi Yan and Pi Batian’s table, with a Pi swordsman’s blade piercing his chest.

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