Chapter 358 – Skill Competition
Under old lady Yuhuang’s influence, the entire atmosphere of the banquet seemed on edge, as if daggers had already been drawn. Lin Ming could even feel a raging fire that was contained with old lady Yuhuang’s eyes. How was this a banquet? It was more like a battlefield on the brink of explosion.
Now, old lady Yuhuang really was full of fire. These old zombies were just too greedy for their own good. In order to request them to send out a few masters, they were like lions that had opened their mouths, completely insatiable. If Divine Phoenix Island had gone along with their conditions, then even if they won the war against the South Sea Demon Region, Divine Phoenix Island would probably drop from a top fourth-grade sect to an ordinary fourth-grade sect. If they wished to reach the threshold of a fifth-grade sect, it would probably take another thousand years of accumulating resources. How could she possibly endure this?
The negotiations had continued for three days, and these old bags had only made some slight unimportant concessions. When it came to those core benefits, they wouldn’t let go no matter what. It was as if they already assumed that Divine Phoenix Island wouldn’t be able to defeat the South Sea Demon Region, and would come begging for help from the Five Element Region’s seven great sects.
Old lady Yuhuang had laid down her pride and reached her bottom line; she had already expected the situation to devolve to this point with these old geezers.
To borrow an early Revolving Core master for one year, they had to pay 30 Heaven Opening Pills. If these were normal times, then requesting such a sky high price was simply robbing them when they were in trouble!
Old lady Yuhuang had stated that if they truly paid such a great price, Divine Phoenix Island would lose a thousand years of accumulation, and fall back to an ordinary fourth-grade sect.
But at this time, the Thundercrest Sect Sovereign had spoken a few words that had caused old lady Yuhuang to nearly go crazy and storm out.
He said, “Falling to an ordinary fourth-grade sect is still better than having your entire sect exterminated.”
As old lady Yuhuang remembered these words, her fingers began to tremble from rage. She turned her head to stare at the Thundercrest Sovereign Lei Jingtian, wishing with her entire being that she could massacre this old man.
However, facing the murderous eyes of old lady Yuhuang, Lei Jingtian was calm, drinking heartily with the guests around, completely disregarded old lady Yuhuang.
“Lei Jingtian! I want see just what’s so great about you!” Old lady Yuhuang shook her glass and the wine inside began to boil; this was the fire-attribute true essence that she was inadvertently exuding.
As the Divine Phoenix Island core disciples that sat near old lady Yuhuang saw the wine in her glass boil, they all felt a nerve-racking horror swell up within them.
This was truly a tragedy. In the upcoming matches, they would need to treat each one as if their life was on the line. Whoever caused old lady Yuhuang to lose face would definitely suffer a miserable fate.
At this moment, Lin Ming was buried to his head in food, eating as much as he could. Suddenly Mu Qianyu’s voice resounded in his ears. “Lin Ming, Master isn’t too happy at the moment. During this competition it seems as if events will be taken to the extreme. Just do what you have to do, and don’t be prodded to action by others. There might even by some martial arts contests with true fighting, be careful that you aren’t wounded.
“In addition, the contest isn’t just martial artists, but also other skills and abilities. For instance, the Sunfire Sect might challenge our disciples in techniques to control fire. If there are people that try to stir you up to compete, don’t immediately answer. The Sunfire Sect has refined their fire controlling techniques for thousands of years. As for you, you just started, so you won’t be their match.”
Mu Qianyu’s voice was filled with concern, and this warmed Lin Ming’s heart. He replied, “I know what to do.”
After three rounds of drinking, the atmosphere was very lively and festive. Suddenly, old lady Yuhuang smiled and said, “”I wonder if everyone is enjoying the festivities?”
“Haha, I am enjoying myself to the max! With such great hospitality, how can I not enjoy myself?” Lei Jingtian stood up, laughing, and said, “However, the wine and food is good, but without dance and fighting it’s a bit boring. How about I have some of my Thundercrest Sect’s disciples go onstage to display some of their poor techniques, so that we can enliven this scene a bit!”
As Lei Jingtian finished speaking, a 16 or 17 year old boy leapt onto the stage. He wore purple clothes and had a purple gold crown on his head. He cupped his fists to everyone present and said, “Fellow seniors, fellow martial cultivators, I am Lei Yu, a disciple of the Thundercrest Sect, currently 17 years old. I would like to display some of my insignificant skills and minor abilities, and hope that I can have everyone smile.”
As Lei Yu spoke, he flicked his finger and lightning jumped into his palm. This lightning was like a living purple snake, continuously swaying in Lei Yu’s hands, sometimes growing, sometimes shrinking, but always extremely gorgeous and brilliant.
After a dozen breaths of time, Lei Yu shook his hand and the purple lightning snake turned into a purple jade ribbon. This jade ribbon emitted a very rich thunder origin energy, and didn’t seem any different from purple silk.
Many of the Five Element Region martial artists under the stage began to applaud. However, there wasn’t a single martial artist from Divine Phoenix Island that was clapping. The reason for this was old lady Yuhuang who was sitting in the seat of honor. With old lady Yuhuang displaying such a frigid and icy expression, who would dare to clap in her presence?
A Vermillion Bird Faction disciple couldn’t sit still and jumped onstage. He said, “Brother Lei Yu has quite the amazing skill. I also happen to understand some similar small tricks, I wonder if I could compare with Brother Lei Yu?”
The disciple didn’t wait for Lei Yu to respond before he waved his hand and a fiery serpent shot into the sky. After it flashed, it turned into a chain of flame. The chain converged, turning into a red chain that was no different from a real chain, even reflecting light like metal would. It was just like a fine iron chain that had been heated red in flames.
This was exactly the fire controlling technique that was covered in the first layer of the ‘Vermillion Bird Forbidden Divine Chronicle’ – Flame Chains. Lin Ming also knew this technique.
The red chain intertwined with the purple silk ribbon. The two disciples seemed to be friendly towards each other, but as soon as they chains and silk twisted together, the two went wild, putting their full strength into defeating the other!
The chain tightened around the silk ribbon, going taut. Thunder and fire flashed. Neither of them stepped back an inch, each of them using the full extent of their strength. After ten breaths of time, there was the sound of silk ripping as the purple silk ribbon was torn in half, but the red chain was in fine condition.
“Haha, I had wanted to compare strength with Brother Lei Yu and gain some good fortune from this banquet, but I didn’t think I would actually tear apart Brother Lei Yu’s lightning silk ribbon. I truly apologize.”
Lei Yu’s expression was ashen. He coldly snorted and then walked offstage. The disciples of Divine Phoenix Island had a very smug and proud expression on their faces. The Divine Phoenix Island disciple turned towards old lady Yuhuang to claim some credit, but as soon as he saw her icy expression, all hope of any accolades soon turned to dust.
This was just the beginning. In a match between two forgettable disciples, whoever won had no effect at all. Against the high-level characters of the sects, this was only worth a laugh.
“Looks like this is going to blow up…” Zhang Zhen clicked his tongue. He turned to Lin Ming and said, “Do you want to go up and show off a bit? If you want to go on you should hurry up. Right now only the most basic core disciples enter the stage. Soon, the middle ranked ones will go up, and then the top ranked disciples. Above those are the direct disciples!
“At that time, you won’t have a chance to show off any more. Just do as I say and take advantage of the moment. Go and challenge someone you’re sure you can take, otherwise you’ll embarrass yourself.”
Lin Ming was the youngest of everyone present. As long as he defeated a disciple that was 17 to 18 years old, to Zhang Zhen, that was already a very flagrant display of his skills.
“I’m in no hurry.” Lin Ming smiled. He had already sensed that there were people from Storm Valley that were eyeing him, especially the purple-clothed girl from the Thundercrest Sect. This entire time she had been staring at him with extreme provocation in her eyes. Even if he didn’t go up, soon there would be people naming him in their challenge.
Once the matches began, they wouldn’t stop.
Just after the match between the two ended, more people walked on stage.
A Divine Phoenix Island Blue Luan Faction core disciple challenged an Arctic Ice Palace Disciple in ice skating techniques. Cold light flashed as their ice skates cut across the ice, but finally, the Blue Luan Faction girl managed to break apart her opponent’s skates, gaining another victory.
What was happening now was a comparison of skills, rather than a head-on match of strength.
In the flash, 6 or 7 matches had already passed. Zhang Zhen also went on stage. He was named by the purple-clothed girl from the Thundercrest Sect. Her name was Zhou Xiaoling, and she was 17 years old. She had a baby face, and smiled with a harmless expression.
Lin Ming was already aware that Zhou Xiaoling had locked onto him. During this banquet, it was inevitable that he would fight her. The reason that she had called out Zhang Zhen was most likely because she saw Zhang Zhen walk with him, and wanted to use him as a demonstration of her meaning.
“Do you know me?” Zhang Zhen was stunned for a moment. His opponent could only be described as a charming and cute girl; she gave off a rather pleasant aura.
Zhang Zhen was in an excellent mood. Such a beautiful young girl had actually remembered him.
The young girl giggled, not answering. This Zhang Zhen was quite thick-headed.
‘This beautiful girl has a very sweet smile. I didn’t think she would know my name, but she actually challenged me by naming me. Is it possible that she has a favorable impression of me, then especially made inquiries about me and wanted to contest in martial arts in order to better know me?’
This was the fantasy that was inevitably produced by such a narcissistic man. Especially when the other party had such a sweet smile.
“Vermillion Bird Faction core disciple Zhang Zhen, just reached 18 this year. Please advise.”
Zhang Zhen also introduced himself. Everyone that went on stage had to report their age. Normally speaking, when disciples fought, the greatest difference between their age could only be around a year. This was the fairest method, and it also made it so that even if they lost it wouldn’t be too ugly.
Although Zhang Zhen had a good impression of this beautiful girl, he didn’t dare to underestimate her. Anyone that dared to enter the stage wouldn’t be weak. He guessed that he would only need to go onstage once, and there was no way he could let himself be defeated here like this. He shook his hand, and a fire python sprang into the air, clawing the skies.
This was the meaning of comparing skills.
Zhou Xiaoling’s two hands moved, and a thin ribbon of purple silk flew into the air. This one move caused Lin Ming to sigh in his heart; this little girl was quite adept at controlling thunder. She could directly let loose a ribbon of purple silk, and didn’t even need to transform the thunder beforehand.
Zhang Zhen’s expression was solemn. The fire python fought with the thin ribbon of purple silk for a moment, and in just a few breaths of time, there was a shattering sound as the purple-clothed girls silk ribbon tore the fire python in half.
Zhang Zhen immediately flushed red. He looked at the fire python that was still struggling in the air. As he faced this young girl Zhou Xiaoling that was a full head shorter than him, he wished that he could find a hole to crawl into.
‘This little girl that came out of nowhere is just too abnormal! Her cultivation is the same as mine, but she’s a year younger. Yet she was able to cut apart my fire python in just a few breaths of time!’