"Oh my god, what is that ability?"
"Is he...a ghost?"
"A spectre? Only he can hit others, while others are unable to hit him?"
"Material and special abilities will both be useless! Could this Gui Wulie really be a ghost?"( lol the pun, Gui translates to ghost)
"All those who call him a ghost can go and bang themselves against the wall! This has definitely got to be Gui Wulie's main special ability! Damn, he's invincible!"
The Skylink erupted once again!
"Fortunately, Mario wasn't sent up for the first duel. Gui Wulie's a perfect counter against him! Regardless of how invincible the black flames are, they will be useless if they can't burn anyone."
"Luckily, luckily! Sigh! The Blazing squadron still has Mario! Let's see him take revenge in the next duel! Being able to snatch one duel from the Gui Family will still be a victory for them!"
The Blazing City's supporters were shocked to the point of their hearts pounding in their chests; they were filled with emotions of pity as well as rejoice. Nonetheless, they had to admit that Sharmie had really given her all. It was just that Gui Wulie's special ability was simply too astonishing. The number 1 assassin of the Federation truly lived up to his name! The legend of one of the 5 upper families, the Gui Family, was truly invincible.
Slumping back into his seat, Ma Dong exclaimed. "Fuck, could the entire Martial Ghost Divine Emperor squadron be as perverted as him? They're really a non-solution!"
"Ladies and gentlemen, everyone is definitely extremely curious about why Sharmie's final attack was completely ineffective, right? Let me give all of you an explainable about it. This is the legendary dimensional combat technique, one of the pre-requisites of an S+ rank evaluation. Most special abilities and Soul Power attacks are ineffective against dimensional combat techniques! Naturally, that doesn't mean that they are invincible, just that they are extremely difficult for people that have yet to reach that realm to understand." explained Ruo Zhi, causing the discussions springing up within the arena and Skylink to become even more hyped up. "This is the second time after Napier Mo where an S+ rank has displayed a top class combat technique in a duel!"
Gui Wulie did not pay heed to the hype around him. In the later fights happening in the CHF, things like dimensional combat techniques would no longer be a secret. This was the reason why the Zhao Family wasn't able to climb to the top. Having not comprehended any dimensional combat techniques or Spiritual Soul combat techniques, Zhao Yilong could not even be considered as an expert.
In the face of dimensional combat techniques, matters like conventional techniques, skills, accurate control of special abilities and immeasurably tyrannical Soul Power would appear fleeting and transient.
Earth shattering cheers and shouts erupted from the hundreds of thousands of people watching in the arena. Not only were they here to watch the CHF, more importantly, they were here to watch miraculous displays of strength that would blow their minds.
Today, Gui Wulie had done precisely that!
This was the almighty Martial Ghost Divine Emperor squadron!
Ma Dong shot a look at Wang Zhong, who was now quiet, while anxiety appeared in his heart. The appearance of dimensional combat techniques meant that Wang Zhong's Cross Wheels, Overlord spear or whatever weapon would become ineffective. Without even talking about dimensional combat techniques, Wang Zhong's special ability was considered to be on the weak side. For some reason, he got the feeling that the round-of-16 would cause everyone watching to tremble.
He was not only the one who felt this way, as people watching via Skylink had started getting similar sentiments. In the morning, Napier Mo's performance had already started to cause countless people to start doubting the demeanour of a ruler from All Mouthy King. In the afternoon, after yet another performance by Gui Wulie, everyone could now feel that a genuine expert would simply not waste time playing around in the OP.
Other than feeling amazed over Gui Wulie's power, there were many people that felt sorry for Sharmie's loss to him. During that duel, she had in fact executed many of her moves and actions with perfection. She had not made minute errors during the fight, and her usage of her special ability had indeed not sullied the reputation of Blazing City, Nonetheless, her opponent was even stronger than her, so the only thing they could do was to shout out in helplessness.
"It's really a pity for Sharmie. However, this is the reality of competitions; the charm of victory, and the cruelness of being resplendent." Ruo Zhi wrapped up his commentary before continuing, "Next up, the Blazing squadron has been pushed into an absolutely passive situation…"
MARIO! MARIO! MARIO!
Just at this instant, waves of shouts and cheers rang out within the arena! They were from the supporters of the Blazing squadron, and were also the ball fans of Sharmie! Sharmie's loss hand caused them to turn quiet! However, they still had Mario!
We're from Blazing City, with a fiery passion and enthusiasm that burned in our hearts!
A fiery temper!
We make clear differences in what we like and hate! We're the Blazing squadron! We have Sharmie! We have Mario! And we never, ever believe in fate!
That's because we will set fire to fate! We never, ever believe in failure! That's because we have Mario! We're the Blazing City! We have the black flames!
Singing voices started to ring out. There weren't many among the audience that hailed from Blazing City. Being only about a thousand tossed into this arena of over a 100 thousand people, they truly could be considered as a drop within an ocean. Nonetheless, when their singing voices rang out, all of the breathing sounds, discussions, shoutings, curses and laughter coming from the other 100 thousand people within the arena were drowned out by them.
It wasn't due to their voices being loud or soft. This was the Blazing City, and its citizens, their emotions, their passion and their enthusiasm were like blazing flames.
Mario calmly walked onto the arena. There was no need to consider any strategies. Frankly speaking, he had great admiration for Wang Zhong, especially for the latter's capability to endure immense pressure. However, he wasn't able to use the same strategy as Wang Zhong, nor was he able to send someone else. This was a duel that he needed to personally participate in. There were some moves that only certain people could execute.
Raising his sword and shield, Mario headed towards the stage while singing in a tone brimming with fighting intent!
"We come from Blazing City!" Mario responded to his supporters.
Hearing the singing voices reverberating within the arena about the Blazing City, Gui Xinying proceeded to stand up with an emotionless look. She seemed to be filled with indifference; as if everything that was happening in this world had absolutely nothing to do with her. Step by step, she walked forward. While this was happening, the sky had suddenly turned gloomy and filled with dark clouds.
Just as Gui Xinying stepped onto the stage, the final glimmer of sunlight shining onto the stage was devoured by darkness.
"Gui Xinying! The second participant sent up by the Divine Ghost Martial Emperor is the Gui Family's little princess!"
That's the might of an S+ rank. Faced against Mario, Gui Hao's still able to remain calm in such a tense situation."
"The flames of hell aren't absolutely invincible. Those belong to Spiritual Soul and dimensional combat techniques. The flames of hell are still classified within the scope of a special ability."
"Are you looking down on her just cuz she's a woman? There's the Stuart Family's Carolyn too! There's also the Seer Family's Divian, all of them are part of the 4 princesses of the Federation! Gui Xinying definitely isn't weak!"
There were many Gui Xinying supporters present in the audience. Despite having a cold demeanour, there were many people who were into such stuff. Of the 4 great princesses of the Federation, Divian and Carolyn had the greatest exposure, with Mo Xingchen being of the non-combat type, while Gui Xinying was the one with the lowest profile. However, her genius-level talent was well renowned. Speaking about appearances, unlike Carolyn's gorgeous looks or Divine's hotness, she appeared more like a deep abyss, while giving off a slight feeling of a lone flower in admiration of itself. Nonetheless, there were people who wanted to understand and possess her, as although roses have thorns, they would be extremely beautiful when they blossomed.
The Blazing squadron had a fighting chance for this duel; having defeated a Mo's List soldier, Mario possessed sufficient strength to be a match against her. As for Gui Xinying, she too was a top class expert. From the looks of it, the odds were placed at 50:50.
A cold and indifferent look was present on Gui Xinying. Despite not having any emotion on her face, the coldness that she radiated was not synonymous with her character. That's because being cold was a mood, but one would not be able to see any traces of it on Gui Xinying's appearance.
"2nd duel, start!"
The referee's voice rang out.
In an instant, Gui Xinying disappeared from her original position. The momentum from her eruption of power caused afterimages to form as she fluttered towards Mario without the presence of any sparks forming. Across the stage, Mario continued to maintain his combat readiness as he waited for her arrival. Although he had defeated Tianqiong Musk, not a single trace of arrogance was shown, and he maintained the stance of a challenger.
Mario had never, ever, underestimated the strength of an S+ rank, especially since there were already two examples who had displayed combat techniques that he was unable to comprehend. Furthermore, he did not believe that his special ability was invincible. Nonetheless, he too did not feel that dimensional and Spiritual Soul combat techniques were genuinely invincible. They merely appeared so due to their weaknesses and loopholes having yet to be discovered. This was just due to his poor vision. If he wanted to deal with Gui Xingying, he had to expect the worst possible outcome, and maintain a solid defence while waiting for the opportunity to counter-attack. He believed in the strength of his hellish flames. Being in the same realm of the Casted Soul Stage, his opponent might not be able to defend against them.
Wang Zhong had an extremely earnest look as he focused on the fight. The round-of-16 truly was extraordinary, as they had brought him a lot of new insights and matters for him to consider. Mario's choice was undoubtedly the correct one, with his thought process being extremely clear and well-planned. With Gui Xinying's level of strength and status, there was a 9 out of 10 chance that she had comprehended some sort of dimensional combat technique.
Having a level of understanding for the hyperdimension that exceeded that of his peers, Wang Zhong had to admit that the 10 great families of the Federation truly were extraordinary. The precise definition of dimensional combat techniques were the usage of one's Soul Power to allow one's fleshly body to temporarily connect to the hyperdimension, granting one a phasing ability for a short duration of time. Naturally, with everyone possessing different types and levels of talent, this would result in different people having different auxiliary effects that came with their dimensional combat techniques. Although it appeared to be just a movement ability, it was in fact something that far exceeded that. Even Heroic Soul Stage experts generally weren't able to use these techniques.
As for Spiritual Soul combat techniques, they were in fact mutually operable with dimensional combat techniques. There were essentially no differences between them; however, their focuses were different. The Soul Sea was the gargantuan discovery that mankind had made upon being awakened as new humans. It possessed many different future possibilities for mankind. Due to him having seen and possessed the Fate Stone within him since young, Wang Zhong's Soul Sea was exceedingly different from other humans. The uses of one's Soul Sea wasn't just to produce Soul Power; that was something as natural as breathing.
Gui Wulie's dimensional combat techniques should also be accomplished with some kind of connection to the hyperdimension. This allowed his body to exist on the fringe between this world and the hyperdimension, thus resulting in physical attacks being ineffective against him. Similarly, he should not be able to attack others while in that state. Therefore, he would definitely have to materialize his body when attacking. Nevertheless, it was a pity that Sharmie wasn't able to grasp that point in time. Furthermore, even after catching onto that fact, one might not be able to grasp hold of the right opportunity to counter-attack.
Napier Mo's multicoloured exploding clone was more focused on the usage of one's Soul Sea. It appeared like a physical clone, though it was, in fact, a Soul clone, with the greatest effect from its resulting explosion being a direct attack to the Soul Sea of his opponent. Clearly, Napier Mo's Soul Sea was also extremely special.
This also meant that the top aristocratic families had completely surpassed all of the academies, with the knowledge structure being established on the existence of the Soul Sea and higher dimensions.
At this moment, Gui Xinying had already gained complete superiority over the fight. Her fluttering movement skill and attacks caused Mario to become as passive as a tortoise hiding in its shell. However, truth be told, Mario's defence was extremely disgusting. Having spent so many years under the Sharmie's "shadow", he was rather confident of his defence. Coupled with his earth attribute special ability, his defence had reached a realm that made Gui Xinying feel helpless. Furthermore, Gui Xinying was clearly keeping up her vigilance. Despite her opponent being in a defensive stance, everyone already knew that his hellish flames were currently the special ability that was most difficult to deal with within the CHF, and merely coming into contact with it would spell the end of her.
Bullets of sweat dripped down the foreheads of the Blazing squadron and their supporters, while a flustered expression appeared on Sharmie's face. Despite having already given her all, Sharmie really wanted to win a duel. No one would be willing to suffer a complete defeat. Therefore, everything now rested on Mario's shoulders.
There were quite a few people from the massive conglomerates within the Federation present in the VIP viewing gallery, with betting games being commonplace there. Although the strength of the parliament had skyrocketed, wanting to break the monopoly of the 5 upper families was truly not an easy task to accomplish.
Gui Xinying's attacks were executed with elegance and grace. However, upon being unable to defend against them, Maro would immediately unleash a ring of hellish flames. This move of his was extremely despicable... despite being an extremely shameless move, it was extremely practical at the same time.
Attacks unleashed using the hellish flames were basically unable to obstruct Gui Xinying's movements. However, what could she do when it was used as a defence?
Nonetheless, the Gui Family appeared exceedingly calm, appearing to be totally unconcerned about Gui Xinying at all. Gui Hao was even having a leisurely chat with the people seated beside him.
Within the stage, Gui Xinying also appeared exceedingly calm as she continued launching attack after attack. An ever so serious expression hung on Mario's face, having been there since the start of the fight. Despite appearing relaxed, he could feel the terrifying Soul Power present in every single attack he received from her. If this continued, he would definitely be the one to crack first.
This stalemate had to be broken!
Gui Xinying's runic sword came attacking over, causing Mario to raise his shield in response. This was an extremely accurate and perfect defence, yet a peculiar change proceeded to appear.
Mario's runic shield proceeded to explode apart!
There were many people who could not understand what had happened, though quite a few experts could make it out that Gui Xinying's attacks had all struck a single spot on Mario's shield, which wasn't particularly resilient or indestructible.
The sudden change had clearly caused Mario to become slightly flustered, which allowed Gui Xinying to send her runic sword right towards him. Nevertheless, instead of evading or retreating back, he had taken the initiative and advanced forward, allowing the runic sword to pierce right into his left chest. Blood spurted out, yet Mario's hands had already grabbed onto Gui Xinying's runic sword, while a bright radiance burst forth from his eyes.
This was his chance!
Heaven falls and rending earth, flaming hell!
Walls of earth instantly encased the 2 like a burial tomb, while surging hellish flames rushed to the skies! This was his only chance!
How would Mario not know that his runic shield wasn't able to take that much abuse? He was putting up an act! The moment his opponent's sword pierced into him was the instant where they would relax. It was also the the only chance he had in this fight; under ordinary circumstances, his hellish flames would have absolutely no way of making contact with Gui Xinying. Additionally, his opponent had yet to even unleash even 70% of her full strength.
A deathly silence filled the entire arena, as no one would have expected such changes to happen in the blink of an eye. Everyone from Blazing City clenched their fists tightly, as this was an opportunity Mario had exchanged with his life, and was also the final move taught in the Blazing Academy --- a combat move to trade one's life for their opponent's.
Even the slightest contact with Mario's hellish flames would spell the end of a Heroic Soul Stage soldier. The Blazing City had finally obtained a victory. Although this was unable to change the final outcome, it was a victory for their honour and dignity!
However, the Gui Family seated below the stage were still chatting and laughing merrily...
In what seemed like a blink of an eye, Mario's earth walls exploded apart as black flames burst out from within. Other than his severely injured body, there was nothing present within..
Gui Xinying's figure appeared not far away, appearing to have stepped through space to arrive there, giving off an exceedingly mysterious and elegant aura.
"You're not bad. Come to the Gui Family, and you will be able to reach the limits of your talent and potential. You should not stop at here." said Gui Xinying in an indifferent tone.
Mario looked at the sword embedded in his chest. Truthfully speaking, his opponent could have taken it out, which would definitely spell the end of him. From the looks of it, this seemingly cold and emotionless girl was just a facade she had created.
With a bitter smile, Mario shook his head and replied, "My life isn't mine to decide!"
Upon saying that, black flames surged across Mario's body. Unexpectedly, the runic sword in his chest started to melt, while his face became even paler than before.
The black flames grew greater in volume and intensity. From the start, the might of the hellish flames was its only astonishing trait. However, from the looks of it now, the hellish flames had actually contained a dense, ominous air, death, and various kinds of corrosive side effects.
"That's enough, Mario!" Sharmie shouted out loudly.
Within the black flames, Mario gave a smile in response. He knew that Sharmie wanted to win, and knew how much she valued a victory for this duel. Therefore, he would definitely achieve it for her, regardless of the price!
All of a sudden, an illusionary figure appeared right behind Mario's back. This was the exact position that Gui Xinying was at when she was surrounded by Mario's earth walls. Yet another Gui Xinying had appeared, before thrusting her snow white right hand right through the black flames onto Mario's nape!
Mario's flames spontaneously disappeared, an incredulous expression on his face as he looked at the silent Gui Xinying behind him, before turning to look at yet another Gui Xinying standing before him.
Black flames instantly spread from the hands to the entire body of the "Gui Xinying" behind him. After a short while, "Gui Xinying" transformed back into an incorporeal appearance, before disappearing alongside the hellish flames.
However, at this moment, Mario had already collapsed on the ground. From the start till the end, he was still unable to wrap his head over what had happened.
Absolute silence filled the entire arena. What the fuck... was that a ghost???
This was the Gui Family little princess???
The black magician was basically beaten into a jet black kid.
Second duel, Martial Ghost Divine Emperor squadron, victory!
The members of the Blazing squadron had already rushed up. As she ran past Gui Xinying, Sharmie muttered a soft word of thanks to her. This was a loss so clean that there wasn't anything she could get angry about.
As usual, an emotionless expression was still present on her face as she walked down from the stage. The healers from the medical squadron were already providing treatment for Mario. Only after one of them nodded towards Sharmie was she able to breathe a sigh of relief. This definitely was Gui Xinying showing him mercy. If not, even if he didn't die, Mario would definitely have been turned into a disabled person.
From the viewing gallery, the two legendary judges shook their heads towards each other. "The kids' nowadays are too easily triggered. Do they really think that they're indestructible?"
"That Gui Family's little lass is slightly avant-garde."
"Stuart and Martial Ghost Divine Emperor have too great of a lead over others. The Parliament won't have much of a chance this year."
On the other side, Mario vomited a large mouthful of coagulated blood as he woke up from his stupor. Upon doing so, he was greeted by a slap from Sharmie. "You bastard! You better not do such a thing without this old lady's approval! If not, I'll let you see how I beat you to death!"
Stunned by her slap, Mario replied. "Cough, cough, I'm sorry, captain. Could you wait a bit longer before you start beating me?"
In the next instant, Sharmie had already hugged Mario's head within her chest, which had already reached heaven defying levels, causing his eyes to turn slightly red. Now, the surrounding members no longer felt any more pity for Mario. Instead, all of them wanted to slap that fellow.
The losses of their twin cores had secured the Blazing squadron's collapse. In the end, they were eliminated with a 0:4 score, while the Martial Ghost Divine Emperor squadron entering the top 8 with ease.
The first day of matches had ended, with the S+ squadrons defending their rightful places at the top. Furthermore, everyone discovered that the gaudiness and magnificent performances they had displayed earlier was due to their opponents being too weak. Only in the face of a true test would they reveal their genuine strength.
Now, being next in line, the hype around the Tianjing squadron had declined sharply, being replaced by the 4 great S+ ranked squadrons. Despite having the Stuart and Grozny squadrons having yet to take action in the round-of-16, everyone could already see the disparity every other squadron had when compared to them.
In other words, with the real show having started, super black horses like the Tianjing and Giant God Peak squadrons could only be considered as minor entertainment till they proved themselves in their upcoming matches.
The first day of the round-of-16 ended with the S+ ranks suppressing the rest. If one had to list out the matches within the round-of-16 that possessed greater suspense than the rest, the match between Copperfield and Blazing Angels on the second day was undoubtedly one of them.
Of the 10 great S ranked squadrons, including the already eliminated Divine Dragon and Bella Dean squadrons, the Copperfield had always been categorised as the weakest of them all. They were barely able to reach that rank due to having a Mo's List ranged soldier, Karkel, holding the fort for them. Although Laura was also on the Mo's List, her being on the summoning master's list was due to her fame as well as the Mo Family banking on her potential and future strength. Being a summoning master that could only rank within the Elite Division in the OP, she could be classified as weak, but within the round-of-16 of this CHF, she truly wasn't able to hold much of a candle to the others.