Chapter 818: Eagle-Clawed Elder
The green-clothed, old man stood in empty air. Large Dou Qi wings on his back flapped slowly, blowing the surrounding air until it spread apart like waves of water.
The expression of the old man was somewhat dark. A sternness filled the spot between his brows. Although the size of his body was quite small, the pair of hands that were revealed outside his sleeves were exceptionally large. His fingers were also unusually long. They emitted a cold blade-like glint under the light of the sunlight.
The faces of both parties changed following the appearance of this green-clothed, old man. The two Demon Flame Valley's expert Dou Wangs swiftly withdrew. After which, they knelt with one knee on the ground and cried out in an extremely respectful manner, "Welcome Fourth Elder!"
Wu Hao's expression was solemn as he stared at the green-clothed, old man in the sky. His heart, however, slowly sank. He was also quite familiar with this green-clothed, old man.
The Fourth Elder of the Demon Flame Valley. His name of Xie Zhen and the people in the 'Black-Corner Region' called him the Eagle-Clawed Elder. His strength was around that of a six star Dou Huang. His sharp close range combat was something that was renowned. This was especially so for his well-known claw technique that caused many to feel afraid by just hearing its name. Quite a number of experts from 'Xiao Gate' had fallen to this person's hands during the conflicts between 'Xiao Gate' and the 'Demon Flame Valley' these past couple of years.
It was obvious that Xiao Yu and the rest had also heard of this person. Hence, their faces had become much uglier.
The green-clothed old man in the sky flapped the Dou Qi wings on his back as he slowly descended. Finally, he landed on a mountain rock on the precipitous wall as he looked down at the stubborn group of Wu Hao from high above. He immediately turned to the two expert Dou Wangs and faintly ridiculed, "Two Dou Wangs are actually unable to finish off a youngling."
The bodies of the two expert Dou Wangs trembled when they heard these words of the green-clothed old man. They hurriedly replied, "Fourth Elder, although the strength of this Wu Hao is similar to us, it is naturally not difficult for us to defeat him. However, we have invited Fourth Elder over as a precaution. Elder, please forgive us for disturbing you."
"Chi, what do you mean by not difficult. The Qi Method and Dou Skills that this Wu Hao practices are stronger than the both of you. Adding this to his all out life risking attacks, the both of you will have a difficult time defeating him unless you pay a certain price. It is likely that the both of you had asked me to come because you are afraid that it will really be difficult to finish him off, right?" Xie Zhen merely laughed after hearing their words.
Embarrassment surfaced on the faces of the two expert Dou Wangs after their thoughts were exposed by Xie Zhen. They did not dare to reply.
Xie Zhen coldly snorted when he saw the embarrassed looked on the faces of these two. He was too lazy to bother with these two fellows who were afraid to die. His gaze turned to Wu Hao's group as he spoke with a faint voice, "It is really not easy to be able to reach this step at such an age. The talent of the students of the Jia Nan Academy really causes one to feel envious. Since most of the students who graduate leave, it is likely that a faction made by them would cause every person in the 'Black-Corner Region' to feel uneasy all the time."
Wu Hao's face was tense. His hand tightly gripped the heavy blood-colored sword as he said in a deep voice, "Xie Zhen, you are a renowned expert within the 'Black-Corner Region' regardless of how one puts it. Today, you actually ignore your status and attack a group of people from the younger generation. It is likely that this will attract a lot of ridicule should this be spread."
"Hee hee, brat, this is the 'Black-Corner Region', not some other place. Only the victor has the greatest say in this place… whatever younger generation or older generation. There is no such taboo in this place." Xie Zhen shook his head and replied with disdain.
"Alright. The old me shall not talk nonsense with you. Are you going to surrender today or continue this resistance?" Xie Zhen waved his hand somewhat impatiently and spoke in a faint voice.
"The Jia Nan Academy does not have anyone who will surrender!" Wu Hao replied in a deep voice. His skin tightened upon sensing the killing intent that gradually seeped out from Xie Zhen's words. The students from the Jia Nan Academy behind him clenched their teeth while standing behind Wu Hao. They were not fools. Therefore, they knew that even if they did surrender, their ending would not be any good. In that case, they might as well go all out and gamble.
"Hei, the people from the Jia Nan Academy are indeed a bunch of people with tough bones but… this is merely seeking to suffer!" Xie Zhen's eyes gradually turned cold as he darkly laughed. His feet suddenly stomped on the ground and his body rushed down, appearing at a spot not far from where Wu Hao's group was.
"It is rumored that the Blood Sword Wu Hao can even disregard his life in combat. Today, the old me shall try and see just how much you can struggle." Xie Zhen's voice was ice-cold as he spoke while slowly walking toward Wu Hao, "All of you should seal the exit tightly. You will use your life to repay if you allow anyone to flee!"
The surrounding black-clothed people from the Demon Flame Valley hurriedly acknowledged Xie Zhen's cold cry. After which, they slowly withdrew, and formed a fan-like shape, completely sealing of the valley's exit.
Wu Hao's heart completely sank upon seeing the other party's stance that obviously intended to finish all of them off. His eyes were blood-red as he observed Xie Zhen who was slowly walking over. Both of his hands tightly gripped the heavy blood-coloured sword. A moment later, he suddenly roared out angrily as his feet stomped on the ground. His body shot forward and the blood sword in his hand shot toward Xie Zhan's heart.
The corner of Xie Zhen's mouth emitted disdain when he saw that Wu Hao had actually chosen to unleash an attack. He stood still and waited for the blood sword to appear at a distance of two feet from him. Only then did his large hand curl slightly in an abrupt fashion. It immediately replicated eagle claws that were extended in a strange manner. Finally, his five fingers were locked forward. They caused the forward momentum of the blood sword, which contained a powerful aura, to completely stiffen.
Wu Hao's face changed slightly as the blood sword stopped moving. He clenched his teeth and violently pulled at the blood sword. However, the other party's five shriveled fingers were like a large pincer that held the blood sword completely still.
"You actually dare to act arrogant in front of this old man with this little strength?" Xie Zhen coldly laughed as he glanced at Wu Hao who was gritting his teeth and pulling at the blood sword. Xie Zhen suddenly flicked his finger, and it struck the heavy ruler with great force. A powerful strength suddenly erupted!
Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang!
Wu Hao's body flew back following the sound of metal. His feet rubbed against the ground, forming a long scar. His hand that held the heavy blood-colored sword repeatedly trembled as a thread of fresh blood seeped out. Finally, it followed the blade of the blood sword and dripped down.
The young ladies and men behind him hurriedly cried out when they saw Wu Hao being forced back with injuries.
"Are you alright?" Xiao Yu's hand supported Wu Hao's back and resolved the force on it. After which, she asked in an anxious manner. The strongest person currently present was Wu Hao. If any accident were to happen to him, they would no longer possess even the slightest ability to resist.
"I'm fine!" Wu Hao clenched his teeth and once again stood up. His eyes were locked onto Xie Zhen's calm face. A moment later, he inhaled a deep breath of air and his face suddenly turned bloody-red.
A mouthful of fresh blood was spat out. Finally, it transformed into a layer of blood fog that wrapped around Wu Hao. Following the wrapping of the blood fog, a bright-red bloody glow suddenly erupted around his body.
The blood glow surged and the Dou Qi within Wu Hao's body greatly soared. His body once again transformed into a bloody figure that explosively shot forth!
"Huh? You do indeed have some small tricks. However, in the face of genuine strength, these things are all completely useless!" Xie Zhen was somewhat surprised when he sensed Wu Hao's aura that had suddenly soared. He immediately let out a cold laugh as his hand-claw curled. A dense-white Dou Qi appeared in his palm before lingering over his sharp fingernails while carrying a dense, cold aura!
The blood figure swiftly flashed and arrived. He raised the heavy sword in his hand high above. Blood-colored Dou Qi wildly churned before the sword violently smashed toward Xie Zhen's head as though it was splitting a mountain.
Xie Zhen's hand-claw, that contained a cold white-colored aura, explosively shot forward as his gaze coldly watched the heavy sword had been hacked down. Afterimages flew in all directions. Each time the hand-claw slammed against the blood sword, the powerful blood-colored Dou Qi covering it would slightly weaken. This continued for only a couple of blinks before the powerful Dou Qi on the blood-colored sword was scattered by the former.
"I shall let you see what is called the strength of a Dou Huang!"
Xie Zhen coldly laughed the moment the Dou Qi scattered. His hand-claw curled and he grabbed the blood sword in a forceful manner. He swung his arm and the blood sword escaped Wu Hao's hand before heavily inserting itself in a mountain wall.
Xie Zhen's body suddenly leaned forward when the blood sword escaped from Wu Hao's hand. His hand-claw cut fhe air and formed a strange scar that viciously smashed against the latter's chest.
Wu Hao immediately spat out a mouthful of fresh blood upon suffering such a heavy blow. His body flew backward. It rubbed against the ground for over ten meters before finally coming to a slow stop.
Xiao Yu's group involuntarily emitted an exclamation when they saw that Wu Hao was once again wounded. A couple of instructors hurriedly rushed forward. However, they ended up spitting blood and were forced back by a couple of wind attacks that suddenly surged over before they could reach Wu Hao's side. In an instant, there was no one who dared to proceed forward.
Xie Zhen's eyes were cold and indifferent as they studied Wu Hao who was struggling to stand up from the ground. The disdain in the corner of his mouth was even denser. His feet moved softly as he slowly walked toward the seriously wounded Wu Hao.
Although Xiao Yu's group around had the intention of stopping Xie Zhen when they saw what he was doing, there was too much of a gap between their strengths to do anything. Xie Zhen could caused them to be unable to reach even a radius of ten meters around Wu Hao by simply raising his hand.
Xie Zhen's feet finally stopped in front of Wu Hao in front of those many horrified gazes. His eyes carried a savage smile as he looked down at Wu Hao from above. He said with a dense voice, "Brat, if you are allowed to train for a couple more years, it is likely that you would be able to surpass the old me. Unfortunately, geniuses are destined to die young!"
Xie Zhen's hand-claw extended after the cold voice sounded. A suction force immediately surged out and a blood figure suddenly rushed over. Finally, it transformed into a blood sword.
"I wonder if dying by your own weapon is considered a humiliation to you?" The blood sword was randomly swung, forming a couple of sword afterimages. This was followed by a faint laugh by Xie Zhen. His eyes suddenly turned cold as the blood sword in his hand pierced toward Wu Hao's head in a ruthless manner.
The faces of Xiao Yu's group drastically changed upon watching Xie Zhen's actions. Some of the young ladies let out an involuntary sharp cry.
The blood sword was swiftly expanding in front of Wu Hao's eyes. At this moment, he no longer had any other path but to shut his eyes and await death…
The blood sword came closer and closer to Wu Hao's head in front of numerous shocked gazes. Just as everyone thought that Wu Hao would definitely die, the rushing sound of wind suddenly resounded through the sky!
A black figure rushed down from the sky in a lightning-like manner as the rushing wind sound appeared. Finally, it accurately knocked against that blood sword!
Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang!
A clear sound reverberated over the place. Immediately, an enormously large black thing was inserted into the ground. The blood sword had been smashed into the ground by it.
Dust scattered from the point where the black object fell. The sudden unexpected change caused everyone to feel stunned. Wu Hao also slowly opened his eyes.. His face was shocked as he looked at the large black ruler that appeared in front of him.
Wu Hao's eyes were startled as he looked at this somewhat familiar-looking enormous black ruler. An instant later, he seemed to have recalled something. A wild joyful suddenly surfaced on his face.
"Xiao Yan? It's you!"
Chapter 819: Xiao Gate, Xiao Yan
Wu Hao joyous cry reverberated unceasingly within the valley, causing quite a number of people to be stunned.
The first person who recovered from her shock was Xiao Yu who was unusually sensitive to this name. A joyful disbelief instantly surged onto her pretty pale-white face.
"May I know which friend has intervened? This matter concerns the grudge of my Demon Flame Valley and the Jia Nan Academy. It has nothing to do with the outsiders!" Xie Zhen's body also hurriedly pulled back as he immediately cried out in a deep voice. As the shout was emitted from his mouth, that gaze swiftly swept over the sky.
"He he, Wu Hao, it has been a long time since we last met. It is unexpected that I end up seeing you in such a miserable state the moment I see you!" A clear laugh appeared from nowhere not long after Xie Zhen's cry sounded. It lingered in the air before it finally resounded over valley.
"Everyone in the valley suddenly raised their heads when they heard this laughter. They saw a black-robed, young man flapping jade-green flame wings on his back as he stood in the sky.
"Xiao Yan… it is really him. We are really saved this time around…" Xiao Yu heaved a sigh of relief when she saw that familiar face. Her pale-white face also revealed a smile as though she had released a heavy burden.
"Instructor Xiao Yu, who is he?" A couple of young instructors beside Xiao Yu asked in soft somewhat uncertain voices. They were all junior instructors of the Jia Nan Academy. They had been selected not long ago. As such, they did not really recognize the name of Xiao Yan. Moreover, two years was not a short time. Therefore, they were momentarily unable to clearly remember the meaning that this name represented.
Some of the young students by the side also revealed uncertain gazes. Before they could voice their question, a young lady who appeared to have recalled something suddenly exclaimed, "Xiao Yan? That Senior Xiao Yan from the Inner Academy? 'Pan's Gate's' founder?"
The exclamation by the young lady immediately exploded among this group like a bomb. Everyone lifted their heads in shock. They stared at the black-robed, young man in the sky. Most of them could fluently retell the various events of Xiao Yan in the Inner Academy backwards. Most of the people adopted admiration for this senior who could fight with those expert Dou Huangs at his age. Adding the presence of 'Pan's Gate' and 'Xiao Gate', left a legendary taste to the reputation of their founder Xiao Yan.
Xiao Yan merely shrugged his shoulders as he observed the numerous astonished gazes below. After which, the fire wings on his back slowly disappeared. His body moved and it gently drifted down before finally appearing in front of Wu Hao. He pressed his hand on the Heavy Xuan Ruler and smiled at the latter. "Not bad, you have already reached the Dou Wang class."
Wu Hao struggled to stand up. He studied the familiar face, which was in close proximity, and his tensed heart finally relaxed. As long as this fellow appeared, he knew that the matter today would end successfully. Wu Hao had always held the greatest confidence in Xiao Yan. During the few years that they were acquainted, he had witnessed quite a number of miracles happening.
"You fellow. It has been two years since you have gone missing…" Wu Hao rubbed the blood trace from the corner of his mouth and let out a couple of intense coughs. A fist immediately smashed into Xiao Yan's chest. His cold and stern face was filled with a rare smile.
Xiao Yan vaguely smiled. He handed a medicinal pill to Wu Hao and patted his shoulder. He laughed, "Eat it. You will be fine after resting by the side. Leave the rest of the matters here to me."
Xiao Yan's gaze shifted back as he spoke. After which, it landed on a tall red-clothed beauty. He gently laughed, "Are you alright?"
Xiao Yu involuntarily felt her nose turn sour as she sensed Xiao Yan gentle gaze. Her eyes were filled with some fog. It was a long while later before she clenched her silver teeth and said, "Don't let these people off. This time around, three students have died in their hands."
"Relax, not one will remain." Xiao Yan softly laughed and nodded.
Xiao Yu involuntarily rolled her eyes when she heard this breeze-like reply by Xiao Yan. She immediately turned her head and did indeed see an unusual flicker in the eyes of quite a number of female students because of this fellow's reply.
"Tsk tsk, what an arrogant tone. The people in the 'Black-Corner Region' who can speak to the old me in such a manner does not include a young brat like you!" The eyes of Xie Zhen a short distance away turned cold as he laughed in a dark manner.
Xiao Yan completely ignored Xie Zhen's laughter. He turned his body and his eyes glanced at Xie Zhen. After which, he slowly walked forward. His hand randomly grabbed the ruler's hilt when he passed the Heavy Xuan Ruler. That enormous item was randomly lifted by him as he slowly walked toward Xie Zhen.
Xie Zhen's eyes became darker when he saw Xiao Yan's action. By sensing his aura, he could tell that the black-robed, young man in front of him was also an elite Dou Haung. However, the latter's level was clearly inferior to him.
"Looks like the Jia Nan Academy really only produces some arrogant and ignorant fellows." Xie Zhen involuntarily laughed after being looked down by a person who was of a lower level. Powerful Dou Qi suddenly surged out of his body. White Dou Qi was like cold ice as it caused some ice shavings to appear on the ground. His large hand-claw tightened. His fingernails appeared incomparably sharp upon being dyed by that cold white-colored air.
"Brat, today, the old me shall allow you to see just what it means to say there is always someone better than you. Don't assume that the you can view everyone in the world as nothing just because your talent is acceptable." Xie Zhen gave off a dense laugh. His feet suddenly stomped on the ground and his body suddenly shot out. Both of his claws danced and caused even the air to be torn apart. The sharp sound of rushing wind caused quite a number of people's relaxed hearts to become anxious once again.
A strange expression flashed across Xiao Yan's eyes when he heard these words of Xie Zhen. He immediately took a step and leaned his body forward in a strange manner. One could only see a sharp hand-claw that contained a coldness moving along Xiao Yan's chest. It flew past while carrying a sharp wind.
"Your speed is still alright…" Xiao Yan randomly dodged this swift attack by Xie Zhen as he spoke in a faint manner.
Xie Zhen was momentarily shocked when his attack miss. Clearly, he felt extremely surprised that Xiao Yan was able to dodge it. However, this absent-mindedness only lasted for an instant. His eyes suddenly became stern as his hand-claw moved. It was like a blade as it suddenly sliced forward.
The corner of Xiao Yan's mouth curled as he watched Xie Zhen suddenly change his attacking stance with a pair of rippleless old-well-like eyes. His fist was abruptly tightened before striking forward. Finally, it collided heavily with that hand claw of Xie Zhen.
Xiao Yan's fist suddenly opened when his hand and the claw collided. His palm shook violently and a hot hidden force suddenly surged out from it!
A low muffled sound appeared. Xiao Yan's body did not move while Xie Zhen's legs rubbed against the ground as he quickly took ten plus steps back. Only then did he stabilize his body. He cried out with shock, "You have hidden your strength?"
Xie Zhen could not be blamed for being so astonished. The instant when the fist and claw collided, the icy-cold Dou Qi within his body was suppressed by Xiao Yan until it was unable to be released. Moreover, that strange, hot force eventually invaded his body, causing the interior of his body to become completely chaotic.
Seeing that Xiao Yan had steadily took the upper hand in his battle with Xie Zhen, the students of the Jia Nan Academy became overjoyed. Low cheers immediately sounded. Although quite a number of rumors about Xiao Yan spread during these two years, none of them had personally witnessed his strength. Hence, most people still felt some worry in their hearts even when Xiao Yan had appeared. However, such worries had instantly vanished after the lightning-like exchange earlier.
"This fellow… his strength is even stronger than it was two years ago…" Wu Hao involuntarily laughed before softly sighing when he saw this exchange.
A smile filled Xiao Yu's face. In her heart, it seemed that as long as this fellow appeared, any kind of desperate situation would be easily resolved.
The Little Fairy Doctor and the others stood at the top of the valley and looked down at the battle occurring in the valley from their high vantage point. The assassins from the Demon Flame Valley around them had already fallen to the ground dead. Mai Di and that young lady called Mo Ling by the side were somewhat stunned as they watched the interior of the valley. Xiao Yan was actually able to obtain the upper hand in a battle with an expert Dou Huang. This was quite a great shock to them. After all, they had similarly not seen Xiao Yan fight. Those battles that their ears were familiar with were things that they had only heard of. Hearing about it was a completely different concept when compared with the degree of shock that came from personally witnessing such strength.
The faces of the people from the Demon Flame Valley had become extremely ugly compared to the joy contained in the expressions of Wu Hao's group. It was unexpected that even Fourth Elder was unable to obtain the upper hand in his fight with this fellow. Just where did this little brat come from?
Xiao Yan's five fingers gently rotated before he once again clenched them. He sensed the Dou Qi that seemed to be commanded by his arm and could not help but smile. The five months of traveling through the mountain forest and killing a countless number of Magical Beasts had indeed caused the Dou Qi in his body to become purer. He had also clearly become even more familiar with this kind of close range combat.
Xiao Yan raised his eyes. A silver glow flashed under his feet before he immediately disappeared in a strange manner.
Xie Zhen's eyes shrank when he saw that Xiao Yan had suddenly disappeared. His body immediately hurried back. However, his body had just moved when a black figure appeared behind him in a ghost-like fashion. A fist that contained a hot force viciously smashed into the latter's back.
Xie Zhen, at the same time, violently threw a punch behind him in conditional reflex when Xiao Yan's fist was about to strike its target. Both fists immediately collided.
A cold smile suddenly surfaced on Xiao Yan's face when they collided. A jade-green flame surged out from his body in all directions.
Powerful Dou Qi that contained a hot flame ruthlessly poured toward Xie Zhen from all directions like fire sweeping over grassland.
The frightening wind that suddenly arrived caused Xie Zhen's face to drastically change. The bones in his wrist emitted a slight cracking sound. Immediately, a mouthful of fresh blood was involuntarily spat out. His body flew forward, splitting the ground before heavily colliding with an enormous rock.
"Just who are you?"
Xie Zhen cried out with a hoarse voice. Shock finally appeared on his face after receiving such a heavily blow.
"'Xiao Gate's' Xiao Yan."
A jade-green flame fiercely burned within the valley. A calm, soft voice gently drifted into the ears of Xie Zhen, only to cause the latter's eyes to abruptly shrink!