“The Crown Prince already arranged for Yun Hailan to win this thing,” Yun He continued. “Anyone who interferes will become his enemy, and he has power in all four of the institutes. Think things through carefully Yang Qi….”
With that, Yun He was gone.
However, his words rang loud and clear in Yang Qi’s mind.
It was now abundantly clear that the Crown Prince was someone not to be trifled with. In the past, Yang Qi had heard that he had influence in the other institutes, but had always assumed it was minimal. After all, the institutes wouldn't allow outsiders to hold sway over their students, would they?
As it turned out, he had been wrong. Clearly, experts from all the institutes feared him, and would heed his commands.
Even this expert among experts, Yun He, held the Crown Prince in high esteem.
That was a level of power that couldn’t be described as ordinary in any way.
In fact, Yang Qi even wondered if the four institutes were collectively grooming the Crown Prince to be their future leader. It seemed unlikely. After all, despite the fact that all four institutes claimed to be righteous and orthodox organizations, they still differed from each other as much as water differed from fire.
Regardless, one thing was for sure: the Crown Prince was powerful beyond imagination.
Could it be that he was intentionally setting Yun Hailan up as the winner in order to establish even more might and authority?
That also seemed a likely possibility.
And yet, all it did was make Yang Qi even more intent on cutting her down in front of all of these spectators. He would not shrink back, not even if the Crown Prince himself showed up in person to try to stop him. He had made up his mind, and nothing would change it. It was like the old saying: If a human blocks my path, I’ll kill him. If a Buddha blocks my path, I’ll kill him too.
Using divine sense to transmit a message into Yun He’s mind, Yang Qi said, ‘You’re complete trash, Yun He. You call yourself a top expert, but it turns out you’re just a bootlicker. And you try to unnerve me? Well, just wait until I win first place. Then I’ll come kill you.’
‘I’ll be waiting,’ Yun He replied. ‘If you’re alive in the end, I’ll be the one killing you.’
‘Screw you.’ As of this moment, Yang Qi knew that he had another enemy in the world.
After all, Yun He was from the Sea God Institute, and shared a surname with Yun Hailan. For all he knew, the two might be related. Maybe they were both jackals from the same lair.
Now, Yang Qi and Yun Hailan were the only ones left in the arena. As they faced off, one boiled with killing intent, and the other stood confident in her well-thought-out plans. As for the latter, it was possible to tell from the arrogant glint in her eyes that she felt she was in perfect control.
“Yun He’s just looking out for your best interests, Yang Qi,” she said. “Walk away. I know it wasn’t easy for you to reach this part of the competition. If you offend the Crown Prince, you’ll meet a tragic end today.”
“Can you do anything other than rely on men to help you, Yun Hailan? By the way, I'm going to make you eat your words. The one to be meeting a tragic end will be you.”
Yun Hailan chuckled. “What's that supposed to mean? You really think you’re going to kill me? Aren’t you worried that I’ve figured out your little secret?”
Looking completely unruffled, Yang Qi replied, “Yeah right. Nothing you know or say could possibly change my mind. I'm going to kill you today, no matter what. So stop wasting your breath. Go ahead and show me whatever it is that pushed you from a puny Energy Arts level nobody to your current level.”
“You’re gonna regret this, Yang Qi! I've given you plenty of chances, but sadly, you’ve been blinded by your desire for revenge, and have lost all sense of reason. Whatever good fortune you’ve come across, you think it’s made you invincible. Sadly, there are plenty of people in the world who have acquired good fortune many times better than yours. And now you’re letting your desire for revenge make you an enemy of the Crown Prince.”
“Enough!” Yang Qi said. He was in no mood to hear Yun Hailan monologuing, and thus, he attacked, waving his hand to send a beam of razor-sharp sword energy flying straight toward her throat.
It was a completely vicious move, cold and merciless to the extreme.
His sword was like wind, lightning, and light. It was a spring rain falling in the dead of night to enter one's dreams. Anyone who faced it would immediately feel like they were facing death itself.
A serious expression overtook Yun Hailan’s face a moment before she transformed into a blur of mist that the sword passed through.
Then, the entire field of battle filled with projected images of her.
Yang Qi suddenly felt like he was surrounded by countless copies of Yun Hailan, each of them as real as real could be, with boundless true energy ready to be unleashed in deadly attack form.
The projections of Yun Hailan clenched their right hands into fists, causing vortexes to spring up behind each and every one of them. Violet energy swirled as an imperial figure appeared. It was almost as if she were communicating with higher heavens, and drawing upon vital energy that contained their might. As the energy descended, it created a rain of vital energy.
Real drops could be seen, not of water, but rather, the vital energy of heaven and earth.
All of them glowed with violet energy that belonged, not to humans, but rather, the Son of Heaven.
“Son of Heaven’s Godfist!”
Unexpectedly, Yun Hailan was using that most all-encompassing and deadly of energy arts, the Son of Heaven’s Godfist, an imperial-class energy art.
It was a fist strike that could overwhelm the world itself, and normally speaking, Yun Hailan’s true energy wouldn’t be enough to sustain it. However, she possessed an item that seemed to be constantly replenishing her reserves.
It was obviously some invincible magical treasure, and most likely, was none other than the Pearl of the Thousand Illusions World.
Yang Qi could sense immense pressure from the Son of Heaven’s Godfist, so mighty that it instantly destroyed his sword energy.
However, sword light quickly swirled around him, creating a defensive barrier that the fist couldn’t penetrate.
The Legendary grand elders in the observation dimension were already discussing how things were playing out. Whoever won this fight would have access to an extremely powerful and mysterious treasure.
“This Yun Hailan is strong. She’s actually forced Yang Qi into a bit of a corner.”
“It’s not that Yun Hailan is particularly strong,” another of the Legendaries said. “It’s the Crown Prince’s Pearl of the Thousand Illusions World. Although, you can’t underestimate her. She has the blood of a sea god in her, as well as the blood of a dragon god. That gives her the power of a dragon in the sea. Patriarchs Wind and Cloud, when you took this girl as an apprentice, you must have shed plenty of blood, sweat, and tears to help her.”
“That’s right,” Patriarch Wind said proudly. “With our Eight Trigrams Wind and Cloud Furnace, we used the true energy of wind and clouds to purify her for a total of forty-nine days. We strengthened her meridians, and even bolstered them with some Eight Trigrams Preheaven Godseals. Thanks to that, her strength has reached an unimaginable level. Of course, the Crown Prince has done even more amazing things. Despite being in another area of space-time, he sent his power to her and created a small-scale world inside of her sea of energy.” Turning to Holy Daughter Manyflowers, he said, “Do you think Yang Qi can stand up to all of that? The Crown Prince is powerful enough to seize good fortune from heaven and earth.”
Holy Daughter Manyflowers snorted coldly. “I'd say that Yang Qi can beat her easily.”
“Oh really?” Patriarch Cloud said. “We just lost quite a bet with you, Holy Daughter Manyflowers. Do you dare to make another wager?”
“Sure. What’s the bet?” Holy Daughter Manyflowers didn’t seem fazed at all by his words. “How about I put up everything I just won as stakes. What could you put up to match that?”
“We’ll put up Vast Heavens Sage Energy!” He pulled out a bottle gourd which he tilted back and forth, causing it to emit a gurgling sound that seemed to indicate the thing was full of liquid. At the same time, the sound was filled with indescribable power, causing the expressions of everyone present to flicker dramatically.
“What?!” one of the Legendaries exclaimed. “Is that really Vast Heavens Sage Energy?” Other Legendaries also rose to their feet in shock.
“It is!” someone said. “According to the rumors, it comes from the vast heavens void, and is a true energy that is rightly called sage energy. Both Legendaries and Great Sages can benefit greatly from it.”
“Yes,” Patriarch Wind said. “It is indeed Vast Heavens Sage Energy, a much higher-level energy than Nine-Yang Immortal Energy. The mighty Crown Prince used his magical power to scour countless voids until he found the proper space-time to extract it from. Then, he provided it to us as a gift. What do you say, Holy Daughter Manyflowers?”
“Fine. If you’re offering a gourd of Vast Heavens Sage Energy, I won’t make any show of refusing the bet. You’re on.” With that she held out her hand, revealing a ring. “All of the treasures I just won are in this ring of holding.”
“Fine! Let’s see how this fight turns out!”
Both Patriarchs Wind and Cloud were gnashing their teeth from the frustration of losing earlier.
Meanwhile, Yun Hailan and Yang Qi were fighting back and forth below, their true energy exploding in terrifying fashion. Yun Hailan’s Son of Heaven’s Godfist only seemed to grow mightier each time she unleashed it, provoking astrological phenomena and causing vital energy to fall like rain.
At the same time, Yang Qi’s sword slashed back and forth, finding every flaw in her fist technique.
From the look of things, Yang Qi was actually on the defensive. Of course, if Yun Hailan ran out of true energy, Yang Qi would likely be able to turn the tables. But unfortunately, the Legendaries present could all tell that she wouldn’t be running out of true energy any time soon. She obviously had a way to connect to some alternate dimension, and draw vital energy from it. As long as heaven and earth existed, she would never run out of energy, and in fact, would likely get stronger as the fight drew out.
“Admit defeat, Yang Qi! My Son of Heaven’s Godfist will only get stronger as I fight. Nobody could beat it. Don’t tell me you think you can defy the heavens?”
Yun Hailan herself wasn’t even visible, only the countless projections of her that filled the area and unleashed fist strikes without cease were seen.
Yang Qi moved about constantly, seeking to find the weaknesses in her attack. Then, at long last, he realized where she was actually standing.
“Enough with your blathering!”
His sword lashed out, and the Nightfall Symphony began.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
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