Qing Qiumu ’s eyes were like full moons as she revealed her indescribable shock. She hadn ’t expected that…
She hadn ’t intended to…
Her eyes turned to Wei Wuyin almost subconsciously, shock still painted on her face. She knew the swords were powerful, but this? Wasn ’t this too much?
Wei Wuyin softly sighed in his heart. He could understand her shock. This current world wasn ’t like the era that the King of Everlore lived in, or the next one that he directly enabled to exist, and the declining momentum was still occurring. Cultivators lacked solid foundations built by well-cultured resources, but alchemy, forgers, and formations were static in their strength. As long as they were made, their effects would forever remain the same.
A seventh-grade product will always be seventh-grade. A high-level astral armament will always have the strength of a high-grade astral armament. But a Sky Ruler of King Everlore ’s era that was nurtured by massive amounts of products was certainly not the same as one today.
This was a depressing fact that the current world was well aware of, and it was clearly revealed by the severe lack of upper-phase Astral Core Realm experts, with merely two existing at the Seventh Stage of the Astral Core Realm—Realm World Phase. During the King of Everlore era, even the three servants that sat by his side had reached the Star Core Phase, the legendary Ninth Stage of the Astral Core Realm. As for the true geniuses of that era such as Grand Monarch Wu Yu, Divine King Han Xei, or the Demonic Abyss Mountain Lord, they reached beyond the Astral Core Realm.
So when she was using such exceptional equipment backed by her astonishing foundation and innate talent, it created an insurmountable gap between today ’s geniuses of the same cultivation. Furthermore, she had unknowingly refined a few eighth-grade products that enhanced the qualities of her strength. This caused a huge discrepancy between her perceived strength and her actual strength.
In the end, Qing Qiumu had to regain her calm by forcefully taking several breaths. She could feel the numerous gazes on her body at the moment. Many were astounded by her ability to one-shot Li Xiao. Except for a few, including Zuhei and Su Mei. Especially Su Mei.
She had been the one to organize the obtaining of nine separate astral swords from all over the Myriad Monarch Astral Territory, bought them, traded for, or was gifted for support from Wei Wuyin. She had even found five top-tier forgers to work together, an act that required enormous amounts of money and organizing, to swiftly get them to reforge the individual astral swords into a single set of nine. That wasn ’t all. She also had to hire twenty formation masters to further reinforce and produce a perfect unified set, which took nearly a year of collaborative effort. So, she knew of its terrifying strength.
She didn ’t think Wei Wuyin had put in all those resources and deals simply to give it to Qing Qiumi, hence her initial shock. While she had expected that he may have intended it for her, but not on the basis of a gift without any cost. After all, she could feel Qing Qiumu ’s Primal Yin aura was fully intact. Ultimately, she truly started to believe that Wei Wuyin had no untoward thoughts towards Qing Qiumu, truly viewing her as a close friend.
For a brief moment, her eyes flitted with a faint indescribable emotion. An emotion that seemed to stem from happiness, but not quite.
For a few minutes, no one said anything nor challenged Qing Qiumu. The expressions on some of their faces were quite ugly as they inspected the nine swords swirling around her exquisite body. This was especially those at the Sky Ruler Phase. Li Xiao might not have been the strongest Sky Ruler, but she was relatively considered near the top. Furthermore, very few actually saw the trajectory of those swords when sent forth.
They didn ’t have confidence in defending against those swords or at least reacting in time to dodge, so their expressions were extremely unsightly to behold.
Should they step forth and challenge?
Like Li Xiao?!
Her sudden death was still way too fresh in their minds.
Wei Wuyin faintly smiled. The structure of this tournament was designed for a few ways of victory. The general and likely way to claim victory is through exhaustion of other Spirit Points while gathering one ’s own, using their wins and losses to their advantage. This would ensure that the competition could take months, until someone reached 10,000 Spirit Points.
The least likely way was to win via consecutive victories. This meant having to fight ten times in a row and declining none of your matches. This was extremely unlikely for lower-phase cultivators. After all, they had to face cultivators with higher ranks without causing a draw through their spirit points.
But the swiftest and most efficient manner of claiming victory was by having a high cultivation, typically at the Soul Idol Phase, and killing their way until no one dared to challenge them. The fact that Qing Qiumu was already achieving this was truly a wonder to behold.
Of course, it was impossible for her to win through this method with her cultivation level and current strength. Still, it was impressive.
Just as Wei Wuyin had thought this, a man rose from his sitting position, his aura seemingly pure and delicate. He had a feminine charm about him. He could be called an exceptional beauty, even as a male, but he was clearly male. He was garbed in white and seemed to have not a speck of dust on it.
He walked forward with a faint and kind smile. ”You ’re extremely talented and possess exceptional strength. Truly befitting the title of Princess of the Forest. ” The voice of the white-robed man was soft yet firm, giving one the sense of being heroic and inviolable. He lacked a distinct domineering disposition of nobility or royalty, but he still had a charm that seemed borderline aggressive without seeming aggressive.
Su Mei ’s eyes drooped slightly. Within those pure and dark eyes of hers was a hint of undisguised disgust.
Wei Wuyin turned to see Da Shan. She seemed calm, but her golden eyes were fixated on the platform, as if not trying to give this man a single glance lest she revealed an horrific and dark intent. But he could see her hands tighten to the point they became pale.
’Seems like this was going to happen sooner than later. ’ While Wei Wuyin thought this, Zuhei ’s scarlet gaze brightened to an inconceivable level as if he was waiting for this moment his entire life. He glanced at Wei Wuyin and his emotions cooled. Then, he glanced at Lin Ming. This Elemental Heaven Pavilion disciple that even seemed to pay attention to. His heart of slaughter and battle thumped with explosive anticipation uncontrollably.
”I might be a little shameless, but so I ’ll apologize if this offends. ” The white-robed man said with a grace and elegance that seemed to originate from nobility, but he still lacked a certain aura, a certain disposition. It felt extremely off-putting to those with keen senses.
He stepped on the stage after the crystal walls had vanished.
Soul Idol Cultivation.
Spirit Points: 132.
# of Continuous Victories: 0.
When his information emerged, the crowd was somewhat startled. A Soul Idol Cultivator had taken action so soon? But then again, considering the distinct fear everyone else revealed, it was bound to happen. He was even a Free Cultivator, otherwise known as a cultivator that did not belong to any sect or force. Furthermore, his Spirit Points were lower than Qing Qiumu. She could use her Spirit Points to force a draw, being able to effectively withdraw from the stage. It seemed like too much of a disadvantage for her.
In truth, Qing Qiumu ’s eyes were steady and her expression was quite calm. Her lack of panic was instead seen as excitement at the prospect of facing a cultivator beyond her cultivation. When she was younger, journeying the Myriad Yore Continent alongside Long Chen, she had fought and won against cultivators with one or even two levels beyond her. This was mostly because of her foundation being more robust and her talents being quite high in comparison to others.
But since she entered the Astral Core Realm, she had felt the chasm-like gap between each phase. Even with an incredible foundation in the Qi Condensation Realm, the benefits it gave her later was nearly unnoticeable. This was further highlighted because the true geniuses of the Myriad Monarch Planet were fed far higher level resources and had greater instruction and opportunities than her.
She simply was incapable of defeating others beyond her cultivation level. She wasn ’t like Long Chen or Wei Wuyin, and this had always left a tiny hole of inadequacy within her heart. Now, she had the opportunity to test it.
Wei Wuyin slightly furrowed his brows. Even Su Mei did as well. She turned towards Wei Wuyin, looking for instructions. If Qing Qiumu faced Yun Hanxi in battle, it would not be an exciting fight. Su Mei knew that Yun Hanxi possessed absolute advantage in cultivation, but the Nine Meadow Astral Swords were not low-level astral weapons.
In fact, they were extremely fierce and powerful. They had a multi-formation that allowed them to convert wood force into a sword-like force that was exceptionally piercing and sharp. Furthermore, this was further empowered by Intent. Perhaps Zuhei or her could defend against this power, but Yun Hanxi didn ’t have that ability.
Either he found an opening and instantly killed Qing Qiumu or he was likely to meet a similar fate as Li Xiao. This created a dilemma.
Wei Wuyin ’s frown deepened.
He thought for a moment.
Yun Hanxi saw Qing Qiumu ’s calm expression and smiled brightly. ”Then, I ’ll exchange pointers with you. I, challe- ”
”Wait! ” A voice interrupted Yun Hanxi, causing him to stop. He turned to see Wei Wuyin who was approaching with a smile.
Nearby, Da Shan was startled alongside everyone else.
Yun Hanxi ’s expression stiffened, and behind his eyes a dark, gloomy aura flitted through for a brief moment. He quickly hid it, giving a gracious smile. ”Prince Wei, is there something you need from me? ”
Wei Wuyin calmly looked at Yun Hanxi. He chuckled lightly. Looking towards Qing Qiumu, ”Mind getting off the stage for a moment? I need to talk to you. ” Those words set off a series of shocked expressions from the crowd, not expecting the legendary Prince of Everlore to interfere at this moment.
Long Chen ’s expression became dark. It was like night had fallen on his face. ’What right do you have to interfere? Do you believe you own this platform? ’ His emotions seethed within his chest.
Qing Qiumu was startled for a moment. But she gave it little thought before turning to look at Han Yunxi once more and nodding in agreement. She didn ’t hesitate to leap off the platform, her consecutive victories were sent back to 0. Once someone stepped off the platform before their consecutive victories reached 10, their victory count would directly reset.
She arrived beside Wei Wuyin, giving him a slight smile. Wei Wuyin flashed an apologetic smile in response. But she didn ’t mind, merely saying: ”I had no intention of winning anyhow. ” Considering Long Chen sought first place, having the same cultivation base, and knowing how much winning this competition meant to him, she didn ’t have the thought of winning since the beginning. She merely wanted to test her mettle against the other geniuses of this world.
Long Chen saw how close they were, and those emotions boiling within his chest ignited. His eyes became even gloomier, but he tried to hide it using a mask of calm, something he had used many times to conceal his thoughts.
Wei Wuyin nodded, ”You ’ll have another chance. ” He brought her away, leaving Han Yunxi by himself.
Han Yunxi ’s expression was slightly unsightly as he watched them walk away, chatting as they did so. It was as if he was inconsequential. A deep-seated sense of inferiority emerged in his heart, and it blazed with envy and hate. This brief gap had him forget that after Qing Qiumu had stepped off, standing on the platform now made him the to-be-challenged party.
Wei Wuyin stopped. Then he turned to see Han Yunxi who swiftly realized this and hurriedly replaced his unsightly expression with a fawning smile.
Wei Wuyin briefly sized him up with his eyes before saying, ”If you surrender your next fight, then you can consider yourself dead. You ’ll have a bounty of fifty thousand astral stones or equivalent value of products. ” After saying that, he brought Qing Qiumu to his previous location.
”…! ” Yun Hanxi ’s scalp turned numb as he heard those words. ’Why?! What did I do to offend you?! ’ He felt his world darken.
Even the crowd went into an uproar of confusion! Long Chen ’s emotions were disrupted by confusion. Everyone couldn ’t help but ask themselves: What did he do?
”I, challenge! ” A voice, fiercely strong and incomparably determined, resounded! The crystal walls quickly formed!
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