Chapter 569: Intense Small Group Matches
The dueling ring designated for group six was in the center and slightly to the east. Xiao Chen took a look and saw that the referee was already there.
The referee was an old man with a deep cultivation and a drawn-out aura. Xiao Chen could not discern his cultivation.
That old man was a Medial Grade Martial Monarch at the very least. He was definitely not an Inferior Grade Martial Monarch. With his cultivation, he should be able to control the situation in the dueling ring.
Twenty dueling rings meant there were twenty Medial Grade Martial Monarchs. With such a force, the Dragon Sealing City’s City Lord probably held more power than some great sects.
However, Dragon Sealing City was normally closed off. The City Lord would not interfere with the power struggle in the continent. For tens of thousands of years, they had maintained absolute neutrality, so the other powers would not be suspicious and jealous of them.
The matches soon began. Two participants from group six stepped up. One used a saber and the other used a sword. They were both peak Medial Grade Martial Kings.
For them to stand out from the several ten thousand geniuses in the continent, they clearly cultivated good Cultivation Techniques and Martial Techniques.
The two’s fight was dazzling. To ordinary cultivators, it was rather interesting; they would not find it boring.
Of course, in Xiao Chen’s eyes, it would be rather boring. These two were weaker than him by two grades. Furthermore, in terms of technique, neither made a breaktaking impression.
After two hundred moves, the cultivator who used the sword sent his opponent’s saber flying and placed his sword against his opponent’s neck.
“The victor is decided. The victor is Number 1; you get two points,” the group six referee said with a calm expression.
After that, Number 3 and Number 4 of group six stepped up. This time, one was a peak Superior Grade Martial King and the other was a cultivator that just advanced to Superior Grade Martial King.
There was a significant difference in cultivation. Not many people had any expectations of this match. After fifty moves, the stronger Number 3 defeated Number 4.
“Next match, Number 5—Xie Ziwen—against Number 6—Zong Liang.”
Xiao Chen was mildly surprised. He had not expected to meet Xie Ziwen so soon. However, they were now no longer on the same level; there was no need for him to pay too much attention to Xie Ziwen.
Xie Ziwen smiled coldly and leaped into the air, directly flying into the dueling ring. The group six referee pointed and the Wind Cloud Barrier opened up, allowing him to land within the dueling ring.
Zong Liang performed a cupped-fist salute and said, “I am Zong Liang from the Great Xia Nation’s Seven Fist Gate. Please kindly provide me with guidance.”
Xie Ziwen said disdainfully, “Seven Fist Gate? Where is this small sect from? I’ve never heard of it. Stop the nonsense. Let’s start! Receive my palm strike!”
He sent out a palm strike, shouting, “Thousand Flaming Palms!” All the fire-attributed energy immediately surged over and thousands of flaming palms appeared out of nowhere.
Then, the flaming palms quickly combined and formed a huge flaming palm.
Xiao Chen’s eyes lit up and he said in a soft voice, “There are improvements. He is now half as strong as Bai Zhan from half a year ago.”
Back in the Ancient Desolate Land, Xie Ziwen’s huge flaming palm required a long time to store power before it could be unleashed.
Furthermore, back then, Xie Ziwen had used it as a trump card against Xiao Chen. Now, he was using it as an ordinary move and he could condense it so quickly.
After one year, Xie Ziwen had improved significantly.
Zong Liang’s expression turned grave. He realized that his opponent was hard to deal with. He brought his hands together and formed a protective Essence shield that looked like a wall; he focused all his efforts in defending.
A heat wave surged and sparks flew. Zong Liang retreated more than a hundred steps.
“Let’s see how many of my palm strikes you can endure!”
Xie Ziwen shouted a loud warcry and a huge flaming palm pressed over like a mountain again. He sent out palm strike after palm strike without pause.
Zong Liang paled. After enduring five moves, blood trickled out from the corner of his lip. Clearly, he was significantly injured.
Xie Ziwen sent out two palm strikes at the same time. The two huge flaming palms instantly condensed and merged into one. Its might promptly doubled and Zong Liang could no longer endure.
Zong Liang’s Essence shield shattered and he vomited a large mouthful of blood. Then, he fell to the ground and could not get up.
“The victor is decided,” the group six referee said calmly. “The victor is Xie Ziwen, you get two points.”
The First Elder, Jiang Chi, said cautiously, “He is able to severely injure his opponent in five moves. Xiao Chen, if you run into him, you have to be careful. This person seems to be a Evil Moon Pavilion disciple. He managed to get into the top fifty in the previous Five Nation Youth Competition.”
Xiao Chen did not say anything. He just smiled faintly as he continued to watch the matches.
In each group, everyone had to fight twenty matches. The first match would happen in numerical order. Xiao Chen’s number was higher, so he would be appearing later.
However, the next few matches of group six were not of a high level. Xiao Chen could not help but shift his attention to the other dueling rings.
He casually looked around and discovered someone familiar. So he could not help but pay some attention.
Duanmu Qing was currently fighting an intense battle with her opponent in dueling ring nine.
Duanmu Qing was only a Medial Grade Martial King but her opponent was a Superior Grade Martial King, higher than her by one grade.
However, the battle was currently in her favor. Her hair had turned white and was fluttering in the air. Her eyes were cold and emotionless as she held a slender, long sword in her hand.
Every move Duanmu Qing made was able to suppress her opponent. She was like a robot; there was no emotion on her face at all.
Being suppressed by someone of a lower cultivation, Duanmu Qing’s opponent had to be feeling very frustrated. He had tried several times to turn the tables, but she always managed to find the weak points of his killing moves, breaking them all immediately.
Finally, she defeated her opponent, becoming the first person in her group to defeat something of a higher cultivation realm.
“Duanmu Qing became so powerful.”
Xiao Chen continued looking around and saw another familiar person—Heavenly Sword Gate’s Ding Fengchou. After not seeing him for a year, he found his improvements astonishing as well.
Ding Fengchou only used three moves to defeat a Superior Grade Martial King opponent. The current Ding Fengchou seemed to be even stronger than Xie Ziwen.
After that, Xiao Chen continued watching some other matches. The weakest participants in the arena battles were Medial Grade Martial Kings; most of the participants were Superior Grade Martial Kings. There were also a few half-step Martial Monarchs.
As for Great Perfection half-step Martial Monarchs, there were less than ten of them. For now, there were no Consummation half-step Martial Monarchs.
“Look! The Nangong Clan’s Nangong Ziyue is going up. She was one of the top eight in the previous Five Nation Youth Competition.”
Xiao Chen looked around and saw a girl in a purple dress standing in dueling ring nineteen. Her temperament seemed extraordinary.
Nangong Ziyue’s opponent was a stout male holding a greatsword. His aura was not weak, either.
“I am Gong Haoyu. Kindly provide me with guidance.” The stout male seemed rather cautious; he knew the Nangong Clan’s reputation. After the match started, he immediately took a few steps back.
However, before Gong Haoyu could stand firmly, he was slammed to the ground by Nangong Ziyue with a palmstrike. He had not even been able to see how she attacked.
“How powerful. Unexpectedly, she only used one palm strike to defeat her opponent.”
“That Gong Haoyu is no weakling, either. In the previous Five Nation Youth Competition he was one of the top fifty. However, it feels like the two are not on the same level.”
“The Nangong Clan truly deserves their reputation. I wonder if she will be able to get into the top five this time.”
Everyone had guessed that Nangong Ziyue would win. However, they had not expected her to win so easily. A genius of the top ten rank was indeed not someone an ordinary genius could compare to.
Xiao Chen saw it all very clearly. However, he did not pay it too much mind. Although Nangong Ziyue was strong, she was not a match for him.
His true opponents were only Sima Lingxuan and Xuanyuan Zhantian. If there was anyone else, it would be the mysterious Chu Chaoyun.
“Next match, Number 19—Xiao Chen—against Number 20—Huang Qiang.”
Finally, it was Xiao Chen’s turn to fight in dueling ring six.
In the dueling ring, Xiao Chen withdrew his aura entirely, not allowing others to know how strong he was. He performed a cupped-fist salute and the match started.
“He he! Thank you for the two points you are giving me.”
Xiao Chen’s opponent, Huang Qiang, was a swordsman. Like Xiao Chen, he was also a half-step Martial Monarch. He pointed his sword at Xiao Chen, not caring about him at all.
This person had not even comprehended sword intent and yet he dared to boast like that. Xiao Chen was speechless.
Xiao Chen stepped forward and his figure flickered. He quickly circulated his Vital Qi and the bones in his body crackled.
Instantly, he felt a boundless Vital Qi filling his body. He shouted, “Breaking Armor! Seizing the Heart!”
Clenching his right fist, Xiao Chen formed a sharp azure energy wave, easily breaking through his opponent’s attacks.
“Claw Seizing the Heart!”
Then, he turned his fist into a claw in a very smooth fashion; the shift looked very natural.
Huang Qiang was horrified to see the claw break his Essence shield and strike his chest.
Xiao Chen did not push his claw into Huang Qiang’s chest. He immediately swiped his hand and pushed against Huang Qiang’s chest with the back of his hand. The huge force smashed Huang Qiang ferociously into the barrier.
Xiao Chen had easily defeated his enemy with one fist and one claw; there was nothing fancy at all.
The fist was the Breaking Armor Fist, which worked to break the defense. The claw was the Claw Seizing the Heart. The claw became as resilient as Frost Iron, as stiff and metal. It could easily pierce into the heart.
The referee of group six was astonished. The matches in his arena ended extraordinarily fast.
Others could not make out these two’s Cultivation Realms. However, he was clear that both were Small Perfection half-step Martial Monarchs. The gap between them was not large.
Originally, the referee thought that the top spot in his dueling ring would be taken by Xie Ziwen. It looked like he would have to rethink this. This Xiao Chen was not weaker than Xie Ziwen.
“The victor is Number 19—Xiao Chen. You gained two points.” The referee announced the result in a loud voice. Then, he looked at Xiao Chen. This youth might be stronger than he thought.
At the private spectator stand in the east, ten youths were leisurely watching the matches in the twenty dueling rings.
These ten people were the seeded participants of this Five Nation Youth Competition. They did not have to undergo the first round of elimination. The first seed, Sima Lingxuan, did not have to undergo either elimination round and could directly join the ranking battles.
The only female seeded participant, Yue Chenxi, stood out among the ten. In the past, the seeded participants were normally from the eight Noble Clans.
The remaining two spots would go to two of the ten great sects. However, in this Five Nation Youth Competition, three participants from the ten great sects managed to get a spot: the Supreme Yi Palace’s Gong Yangyu, the Drifting Snow Sword Pavilion’s Liu Xiaoyun, and the Supreme Sky Sect’s Yue Chenxi.
When Yue Chenxi saw Xiao Chen defeating his opponent in two moves, her eyes lit up, a bright smile appearing on her delicate face.
Xiao Chen, indeed, you have not disappointed me. This time, you will be able to make me go all out.
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