AST 259 – Scene of Tragedy, the Uncertain Death of Huoyun Liu-Li
The next few days passed in peace. Qing Shui was idling around during the day. He was basically stabilizing his Crane form and practicing his Soaring Crane Steps. At the same time, he supervised the last minute cultivations of the other two women.
Among these few days, Qing Shui forged the helmet at the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal. However, it yielded the similar effect with the armor.
Effects: Increment of 10% defense in protection, strength, endurance, and agility.
Qing Shui was a little speechless. This helmet was too ungenerous. Although the increase in defensive power was acceptable, the increase in its other properties was too little. However, Qing Shui still forged the remaining few items as every little increment counted.
“Qing Shui, I’m bored, let’s go out and have fun!” Huoyun Liu-Li pouted at Qing Shui after breakfast.
The sun was still high and Qing Shui realized that they must have been worn out from the past few days. Seeing the hopeful eyes of Huoyun Liu-Li, he could only agree to get some fresh air with them. After all, this was a stressful period.
Qing Shui was still worried that them Immortal Sword Sect would capture them to threaten Canghai, or directly kill a few of them.
“Remember to wear your battle skirt and bring your weapons!” Qing Shui thoughtfully reminded. It was just in case.
Qing Shui, Huoyun Liu-Li and Canghai Mingyue planned to visit the Southern Ancient Pass, which was not too far away. Before the trio left, Canghai urged them to be cautious and to come back soon.
The streets were bustling as usual, and the crowd never thinned out; everyone was busy with their own things. The loud cries of sales, prices and the noises became an awkward yet harmonious scene.
Huoyun Liu-Li was especially enthusiastic today. She dragged Qing Shui and Canghai Mingyue to look at everything, but she’d rarely buy anything. Canghai Mingyue seemed uninterested by these things. Unless she was pulled by Huoyun Liu-Li, she wouldn’t seriously look at the merchandises much.
They wandered around blindly along the Southern Ancient Pass through the countless changing doors, not knowing how far they walked or how many streets they passed. Canghai Mingyue’s and Huoyun Liu-Li’s appearances and their beauties attracted a lot of attention. Qing Shui, who was in tow, was stared at, envied, being jealous of, scorned at and cursed at.
The next street they turned in was empty. It was as if they had stepped into another dimension though the street was still extremely wide.
The sudden change made Qing Shui feel a little weird. Even though similar streets were close to each other, one was bustling with noise while the other was completely deserted.
“Why is there no one on this street?” Qing Shui asked Canghai Mingyue. Qing Shui realized that he could jokingly call her Mingyue. When it came to serious chats, he wasn’t too sure of what to call her. QIng Shui could naturally address Huoyun Liu-Li as Liu-Li.
Canghai Mingyue paled. How could they arrive here unknowingly? When she was about to speak to Qing Shui, an unexpected voice interrupted.
“This street is known as the Bloody Street. Generally any fights are settled here. It may look clean here but it is actually already stained by blood all over!”
The voice was filled with immense hatred!
Qing Shui saw a line of figures garbed in white with long swords emerging from a corner nearby. They were led by two elderly men, one being a refined man, the other a tougher man. The owner of the voice was the refined old man.
Qing Shui’s facial expression changed, the other two women paled even more and looked at Qing Shui. This made Qing Shui uncertain if he should be happy or depressed about it. The reliance in the gaze of those two women should made him feel proud as a man, however, he did not have such capability.
Qing Shui forced his gaze to no less than twenty people from the Immortal Sword Sect, in which among them were two leading elders.
“You all are really going to such lengths to catch us. How free of you to be waiting for us everyday. Is this interesting?” Qing Shui frowned at the elderly man across him who looked refined yet with a dark look on his face.
“Follow you? Do you think you’re worth the trouble? We were going to finish you all in two days time, but since we bumped into you today, might as well grant my grandchild his wish!” The elder on the left spat, his hateful glare was enough to make one’s hair stand on end.
“Elder Ying, didn’t the Ancestor said not do anything reckless?” the elder who stayed quiet this whole time frowned.
“The Ancestor has already instructed to catch all of them within these two days. If we make the three of them stay here forever, then our job is done. Surely the Ancestor will reward both of us handsomely. Elder Sun, don’t tell me that we aren’t even capable of making these three people stay.” Elder Ying said to the other old man in disdain.
“If both of us take care of these three today, I will agree to that term of yours,” Elder Ying casually said.
“Are you serious about this?”
“It’s just a Xiantian level combat technique,” Elder Ying said to Elder Sun while holding his gaze at Qing Shui and his companions darkly.
“Qing Shui, what do we do?” Huoyun Liu-Li asked calmly although she was frightened.
Qing Shui actually has no good idea. The two elders standing across him were the masters of the Martial King grade. Albeit they were Martial King Grade 1, there were two of them. Qing Shui thought he could at least stand a chance if there was only one of them.
It was already difficult to escape now, even if he were to summon Fire Birdnow, he predicted that his opponents would not allow the three of them the time to climb onto its back. But Qing Shui still summoned Fire Bird, in hopes that at least the two women could make it. They should still escape if situation allows for it.
Unfortunately his opponents dashed towards him as soon as Qing Shui made his move. Qing Shui smiled wryly. He could only push the two women aside helplessly, at the same time ensuring that Fire Bird could come near enough to let both of them onto its back.
Qing Shui had planned this out. If those two women could successfully climb onto Fire Bird, Qing Shui would order the Fire Bird to leave for Canghai’s home. While he could escape with the help of Soaring Crane Steps and the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal.
“Elder Sun, leave this little kid to me. You and your Iron Feather Hawk can take on that bird and those two little girls.” Elder Ying said while his dry palms were stretched out towards Qing Shui, his breath puffed out like white smoke.
Qing Shui was cautious in his first match against a Martial King Grade opponent. Even if he was only a Grade 1 Martial King, his power was boundless compared to a Xiantian. Such was the insurmountable gap between them.
Accompanied by a tiger roar, a layer of faint yellow gas emitted from Qing Shui’s tiger form-like claws. To date Qing Shui’s power had already reached a whooping 30,000 jin of strength. It was not much of a difference compared to the power of a low-level Martial King opponent. Qing Shui could fight without holding back this time round.
The tiger form of Qing Shui was perfect. The ferocious tiger was known as the King of Beasts in the past. Even a normal claw attack could reach up to the strength of two thousand jin. A Siberian Tiger and Bengal Tiger could grow up to three meters in height and five hundred to six hundred jin in weight. A normal claw attack could reach up to the power of a ton. The title of the King of Beasts was not undeserved.
To date Qing Shui’s power had surpassed that of a ferocious tiger’s. After all, if the ferocious tiger in the past was to be brought here, it wouldn’t be able to defeat a wild boar. However there were powerful tiger species here, just like that giant White Jade Snow Tiger of LuanLuan.
Qing Shui did not lack power nor techniques, he lacked real combat experience. He lowered his palms, two loud bangs were heard.
Qing Shui felt his blood seething, but the Qi of the Ancient Strengthening Technique in his body instantly calmed it down. He thought to himself: “Is this Martial King even capable? To be on par fighting head on with himself, is he even using his full strength?”
In Qing Shui’s surprise, Elder Ying was even more surprised. Even if it wasn’t part of his plan to take this kid’s life, he would at least heavily damage him. It was out of his expectation to see this young man actually stood against his attacks.
After this encounter, Qing Shui knew where he stood. He had always wanted to battle a newly promoted Martial King.
When Elder Ying suddenly pulled out his blade during his exchange with Qing Shui, Qing Shui almost yelped because that blade looked like the Heaven Shattering Blade.
It was an unsophisticated and heavy big blade. Qing Shui figured it was at least two meters long, about one foot in width, and an inch in thickness with the exception of the edge of the blade. The whole blade appeared to be casted in bronze and was emitting an air of might. It was a domineering sight.
It seemed like he had cultivated lifting heavy as though it was light. After all, having significant strength did not necessary mean one can wield heavy weapons. Even if one could barely wield a heavy weapon, he would not be able to master it. Even someone with the strength of 100 jin would not be able to swing a weapon of 10 jin in weight for an extended amount of time. To be able to reach a 1:100 ratio of weapon mass to wielder’s strength was already considered very powerful.
Qing Shui was already struggling to wield the Big Dipper Sword that weighed 2000 jin with his enormous strength of 300,000 jin. In general, anyone who could wield heavy weapons were either born with super powers or had undergone vigorous cultivation to the extent of being able to lift any weight as though it was light. So it was important to note there was a significant difference in the output power between a 50 jin weapon and a 500 jin weapon even if they are wielded with the same strength.
Qing Shui quietly lifted his own sword, the Big Dipper Sword. He had already cultivated the sword, which was no less than 2000 jin in weight, to a profound level.
Qing Shui knew that Elder Ying’s trump card should lie in his blade because he unshielded his blade without any hesitance right after their clashed. It seemed like he wanted to settle score quick.
A sharp cry from a bird rang out. Qing Shui glanced up and couldn’t help laughing. The black Iron Feather Hawk which was a lot smaller in size than the Fire Bird was trying to put out the fire on its own body in the sky. And the Fire Bird, which was not too far away, breathed out a purple fireball.
Qing Shui had known that Fire Bird could breathe fireballs, he just didn’t expect that the flame would be purple in color and it was of speed of light.Then it would explode on contact with the target.
Just that he had no clue on how many times Fire Bird could breathe out this kind of violet fireballs. A burst of aura could be sensed in the air. It turned out that Elder Ying swung his blade down at the very moment Qing Shui was distracted and built up all the energy in his body to the crown of his head.
He did not bother to hide his aura because he wanted to overwhelm Qing Shui. The aura was so intense that even the normal disciples of Immortal Sword Sect backed off a few steps.
Qing Shui was very vigilant and on top of that, did not let his guard down, so he readily slashed the Big Dipper Sword in his hands upwards. To date Qing Shui had already cultivated lifting heavy as though it was light to a significant level.
The noise of metal clashing against each other was piercing to the ears. Qing Shui saw that his Big Dipper Sword was not scratched at all and then also noticed that the giant blade of his opponent was equally unscatched.
Sabre Tyrannical Qi, Power stance!
The first method of unravelling a blade technique was to be more powerful and have a stronger stance than the opponent to conquer the opponent with absolute power. The second was to evade the opponent’s stance. Unravel with technique, Unravel Stance!
Strength and technique were contradictions themselves. Whether they were strong or weak all depended on the users themselves.
Qing Shui’s first technique to reach the Obscure Realm was the most elementary Basic Sword Principle. When Qing Shui evaded Elder Ying’s blade and countered him with his own strike, Elder Ying looked as if he had seen a ghost.
“Basic Sword Principal of the Obscure Realm, you’re not a human, boy!” Elder Ying’s exclamation rendered Qing Shui speechless. This goddamn old geezer was scolding him during a life and death duel…
Qing Shui felt extremely worried when he noticed that Canghai Mingyue was already fighting Elder Sun. Fortunately, Fire Bird had already incapacitated the opponent’s Iron Feather Hawk and was able to attack synchronously with Canghai Mingyue so the fight was in her favor. On the other hand, Huoyun Liu-Li could only stand at a side dreadfully. The difference between their capabilities was too great. The other normal disciples who would prove to be useless in the fights blocked off Huoyun Liu-Li’s escape route instead.
Elder Sun, this kid is persistent. Hurry up and take care of those girls and help me out here.” Elder Ying could not do anything other than defending himself against Qing Shui’s Basic Sword Principal of the Obscure Realm and only managed to sneak in one of two counter attacks in between.
Qing Shui did not expect his Basic Sword Principal of the Obscure Realm to be this much more powerful than that of a Truth Realm’s in an actual battle too. Its power had at least increased 20%, although it had merely just stabilized in the Obscure Realm.
Although he could keep his opponent at bay but he could not kill him. Qing Shui actually did not manage to take hidden weapons. Although retrieving items from the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal did not require any physical entrance, but it still required a short period of time. However, that was no longer the case now. Even entering the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal physically now would require “a ton” of time. These were absolutely forbidden during the battle of experts; it could steal a life in an instant.
Within just a short actual combat, Qing Shui had the feeling that his sword technique had become more unique than from his own cultivation from before. It was a peculiar feeling; as if it was of very precise judgment and handling.
It was no wonder so many Martial Kings were also going towards the direction of Obscure Realm. Just an Obscure Basic Sword Principal could push a Grade 1 Martial King to the point where he could only struggle.
“This red haired beast is aggressive. Stupid brat has weird techniques and is not slow. You hang in there for a little more, I can win this within 30 moves.” Elder Sun huffed loudly in rage.
Qing Shui got even more worried upon hearing the yell of Elder Sun. His Soaring Crane Steps did only little damage to his opponent, and now even all of his attacks were blocked by that giant blade.
Qing Shui had the feeling that this old geezer was just buying time. His giant sword was just like a shield; its defense was so solid that not even a droplet of water could pass through. Seemed like this old geezer was very seasoned from the countless actual combats and battlefields he had experienced throughout many years.
Qing Shui heard a sudden alarmed cry rang out along with a sharp bird cry!
Qing Shui’s stomach gave a lurch. He turned around and was greeted by only red…
Huoyun Liu-Li was still suspended in mid-air, with her blood splattering all over the place. Her ribs and rib cage were completely destroyed. The old man made a deep cut that ran all the way from her battle skirt to the right corner of her lips and then to the corner of her left eye. The cut was so deep that the bone was exposed in sight.
Qing Shui stared at the tragic scene in the sky achingly. He could only watch in horror as Huoyun Liu-Li was tossed aside, motionlessly and her death uncertain.