Under the wall of Beiluo City…
The thump of hooves was like thunder .
Amid the clouds of dust, Lu Changkong dashed toward Feng Shi like a bolt of lightning as the mane of his horse flew and whipped in the wind . He had donned his heavy armor, and he gripped his long halberd, his eyes burning with a glowing intensity .
Boom! Boom! Boom!
On the city wall, a strong man started swinging the drumsticks . The deafening beating of the battle drum began .
1Feng Shi’s attention was locked on the charging horseman . His eyes grew intense as his opponent rushed at him with such deadly aggression that the yellow sand beneath him started to rise before him like an ocean swell .
“Lu Changkong… a Grandmaster-level martial arts practitioner!” Feng Shi murmured to himself . The next instant, he burst into deafening laughter .
He spurred his shaggy black horse, who neighed loudly .
Without the slightest trace of fear, Feng Shi also flew at his opponent like a roar of thunder .
Everything seemed to fly behind him .
His eyes glowed with bloodlust, and he held his giant knife horizontally .
Two figures on their horses, one from the north and the other from the south, were pounding toward each other .
Feng Shi was a huge man: a First-Tier practitioner who had focused on external energy development .
Lu Changkong, though quite stalwart, was not as large . He had focused on internal energy development, which was mainly about the skill of controlling Qi and blood .
The two got closer and closer to each other, like two lightning bolts .
Lu Changkong lowered his upper body closer to the back of his horse . The long halberd in his hand suddenly swept out .
The blue veins in his arm bulged . They looked like tiny dragons .
2Feng Shi roared .
In the deafening and blood-boiling drumbeats, Lu Changkong’s long halberd and Feng Shi’s knife clashed .
Sparks flew as the two met . The whole battlefield echoed with the explosive crash .
Feng Shi was extremely strong and brave, reveling in his ridiculous natural strength .
By his second strike, he had overpowered his opponent with only his strength .
Although Feng Shi was not a Grandmaster yet, his power was no weaker than that of one .
Lu Changkong’s sharp eyes were filled with murderous intent . He looked at Feng Shi as if he were staring at a dead man .
Lu Changkong’s long halberd suddenly rotated in his hand . He moved the Qi and blood in his body to give his weapon a boost so strong that even his helmet was bumped into the air .
The long halberd swept around Feng Shi’s knife, pressing it down .
Startled, Feng Shi dropped his precious knife .
Lu Changkong snorted and threw his long halberd right at Feng Shi’s weapon, pinning it to the ground .
Soon after that, Lu Changkong’s fist was out .
Feng Shi roared in rage and met Lu Changkong’s fist with his own .
However, since Lu Changkong was an internal practitioner whose Qi and blood flowed thick and rich, he quickly threw three punches in a row .
The blows landed before Feng Shi could recover his energy .
Feng Shi fell off his horse and hit the ground heavily, coughing blood as he flopped over the dirt .
“The city master rocks! Kill!”
1“Our city master is a Grandmaster! Some savage with only physical power is no match for him!”
Up the city wall of Beiluo City, the defending generals and soldiers were all cheering . The morale of the defenders had been significantly boosted .
The army of North County, on the other hand, fell silent .
Lu Changkong didn’t get complacent . His eyes were still calm and cold . Circling his horse, he quickly snatched his long halberd from the ground and swept it right at Feng Shi, aiming to cut him in half .
Without hesitation, Feng Shi started running back to his men .
His strong legs were like a pair of pillars, and the ground started shaking as if some giant beast were stomping on it .
1Deep in the camps of the North County army…
Several huge tents stood .
A soldier flew into the largest tent and dropped to one knee .
“Mayor! The city master of Beiluo City came out alone . General Feng was defeated and forced to retreat,” the soldier reported loudly .
On the central seat in the tent, a slender man sat elegantly . He was wearing armor and a red cape that fell straight from his shoulders and over his back .
As he sat in his chair, one of his hands held his chin, his index finger tapping on it .
Upon hearing the news, instead of getting worried, he looked somewhat pleased .
“I knew it! Lu Changkong came out in person . ”
Inside the tent, several generals also had strange looks of pleasure on their faces .
“Just as the mayor predicted! Beiluo City is ours to take . ” They all hurried to congratulate the mayor, Tantai Xuan .
His elegant, refined face formed a gentle smile .
“As crafty as that old man Lu Changkong is, I knew it wouldn’t be easy to get him to come out alone . Only some foul-mouthed, hot-headed character like Feng Shi had a chance to provoke him to come out of the city . ”
Tantai Xuan stood up . There was an edge to his gentle eyes, a hidden sharpness .
“We invited you Grandmasters to make it impossible for Lu Changkong to return to Beiluo City today . We only have one chance . If Lu Changkong makes it back inside the city and rallies his forces to defend the walls, it will take us months to take Beiluo City, at the very least . ”
“Besides, it’s time for our insiders to take action . With both external and internal crises, Beiluo City is doomed,” Tantai Xuan said, putting on his helmet and waving his hand .
All the generals present accepted the order with their fists cupped in their hands .
1The sound of horse hooves was thunder-loud .
Feng Shi’s heart skipped a beat .
Suddenly, the lines of North County’s forces parted, and several figures on horses dashed toward Lu Changkong .
The roar of Qi and blood within their bodies was loud and clear .
Internal Blasting Resonance! Grandmasters!
All these men rushing out were Grandmasters!
Lu Changkong’s chest felt tight . He drew the reins, and the horse reared, its hooves thrashing high in the air .
Feng Shi was relieved . He burst into wild laughter .
The air crackled with the power of the Grandmasters flying toward their opponent .
Four men moved in, each holding their own weapon of choice: a spear, a sword, a knife, and a whisk .
5“Luo Sword Sect, Black Tiger Clan… and Green City Temple?!”
This surprised Lu Changkong . He hadn’t expected them to send out four Grandmasters, not to mention that only one of them was a North County general and the other three were all from the martial arts world .
“As practitioners from the martial arts world, you were supposed to answer to the Imperial Advisor’s call and contribute to our Great Zhou Dynasty . Instead, you have betrayed us and joined the traitors!” Lu Changkong roared in outrage . A vein at his temple bulged .
1The long halberd in his hand moved as if of its own accord, its silver blade blinding, and clashed with the Grandmasters’ sword, knife, and whisk at once .
Though he was up against three opponents, Lu Changkong didn’t let them get the better of him .
1Some distance away, Tantai Xuan was standing on an observation platform that had been temporarily erected in the midst of the North County army . His eyes grew more intense .
“Lu Changkong’s gotten even stronger… Luckily, we have three Grandmasters from the martial arts world helping us . Otherwise, it would be quite difficult to stop him,” Tantai Xuan murmured with a sigh .
“Unfortunately, even a Grandmaster like Lu Changkong is still human . ”
1With one strike, Lu Changkong pressed his opponents back . He then turned around without hesitation and rode back toward Beiluo City at breakneck speed .
His power had improved greatly in recent months . He had thought everything was under control . Yet the Grandmasters had unexpectedly betrayed the empire and joined the enemy . Lu Changkong knew he couldn’t fall off the horse . Once they brought him down, Beiluo City was doomed .
Suddenly, Lu Changkong’s eyes filled with overwhelming rage . His heart boiled over with anger .
“How dare you!” Lu Changkong snarled . His voice exploded in deafening waves of sound .
The city wall was a mess .
Armed men wearing Confucianist gowns from the three aristocratic families were fighting against the defending officers and soldiers .
As he fought, the city’s front gate had been open the whole time .
Now, the gate was shut . Lu Changkong was isolated .
1By the time Ning Zhao pushed Lu Fan’s wheelchair to the city wall, the outer edges of Beiluo City were complete mayhem .
Behind the gate, dead bodies lay in piles . One of Lu Changkong’s most trusted officers had been run through with a long spike . He was kneeling on the ground with his eyes wide open, still filled with rage . He wasn’t breathing .
In the air was the pungent scent of blood .
The men in Confucianist gowns killed the soldiers guarding the gate, then shut and barred the gate .
Lu Fan’s brow was deeply furrowed . He grew a little pale . He covered his nose and mouth with his woolen blanket . He wasn’t used to the odor .
1As martial arts practitioners, Ning Zhao and Yi Yue were no strangers to scenes of fighting and death like this .
Even Ni Yu had seen her share of blood .
For Lu Fan, it was the first time he had witnessed such a hellish scene .
“Young Master…” Ning Zhao eyed him with concern .
Lu Fan waved his hands slightly, a look of sudden enlightenment passing briefly over his face .
That was what troubled times looked like .
In turbulent periods of history, lives were highly disposable . Even though he had the stats page, if he couldn’t survive, it would all be for nothing .
Those were the rules of this world .
“I’m fine,” Lu Fan said calmly . “I’m just not a big fan of the smell of blood . ”
Three men wearing green Confucianist gowns and holding long, bloodstained swords stepped into the street, blocking Lu Fan and his maids .
They eyed Lu Fan in the wheelchair strangely .
It was the Young Master of Beiluo City . As men of the three aristocratic families, they could recognize him . But the sick Young Master Lu showing up at the city wall was something they hadn’t expected .
They exchanged looks, and twisted smiles crossed their faces .
“Young Master Lu, this is not the place for you to write poems or meet girls . You should leave now . A disabled guy like you shouldn’t be here . ”
“Beiluo City will soon have a new master . Cripple Lu, you might as well go home and pack . Hurry! Run for your life!”
“Run for his life? Without his dad, how long can this cripple last? I do think the maids are pretty nice, though . We’ll be more than glad to take care of them on his behalf . ”
The three Confucianist-looking men sneered and laughed, ignoring the look on Lu Fan’s face .
Before that day, if they had run into Lu Fan, they would have given him their respect . Now that their betrayal was so obvious, they didn’t bother pretending anymore .
A paralyzed man in a wheelchair and three maids . It was a pretty funny combination .
Of course, the three men weren’t intentionally underestimating the women, either .
Since Ning Zhao had reached the level of Grandmaster, she had hidden her Qi and blood flow deep in her body . It was impossible to tell her level, not to mention that she didn’t look like she was even armed .
They paid more attention to Yi Yue, who had a long whip tucked inside her belt . She was apparently a martial arts practitioner .
Judging by her face, they could tell that she had a strong flow of Qi and blood . The veins at her temples bulged too . She was no ordinary practitioner .
As for Ni Yu, who was holding an umbrella…
She was simply there to be cute .
5Ning Zhao’s beautiful face was emotionless .
Yi Yue had lifted the whip at her side . Her eyes were cold and sharp .
Ni Yu stood right next to Lu Fan with the umbrella handle tightly clenched in her arms . Her petite body was shaking .
Lu Fan still sat calmly in the wheelchair . His fingers were knitted and resting on the thin woolen blanket over his legs . His gaze traveled to the top of the city wall in the distance, and he frowned a bit .
It had happened after all .
He knew it . Since the system had assigned him the quest, he had no doubt about what was happening .
“You humiliated the Young Master… Die!” Yi Yue’s foxy face contorted in a ghastly expression of fury .
Her long whip hit the ground, striking the street with an explosive sound .
Then Ning Zhao put her delicate hand on Yi Yue’s shoulder .
“Yue, stay with the Young Master,” Ning Zhao said softly .
In the next second, her small, soft hand lightly patted one of the wheelchair handles .
A silver gleam darted out .
A long sword with a blade as thin as a cicada’s wing was hidden inside the wheelchair .
She took the sword in hand .
Ning Zhao swept out like a light breeze, with Internal Blasting Resonances crackling from her body .
The three Confucianist men were stunned .
Then they were horrified .
“Internal Blasting Resonances? A Grandmaster?”
“A Grandmaster maid? What kind of show-off arrangement is this?”
Those three Confucianist men from the three great aristocratic families had never expected that the quiet, graceful, beautiful maid was a Grandmaster .
They were sickened by fear, and they had lost their will to fight .
They quickly turned to escape .
However, in front of a Grandmaster, three Second-Tier practitioners didn’t have the luxury of running .
The silver-white gleam of the blade shot like lightning through the throats of the three men .
1Their green gowns were soaked in blood as they dropped dead .
Swish, swish, swish .
As if a gentle gust of wind had just gone past, no dust was left .
Ning Zhao walked back to her group . She flicked away the drops of blood on her Cicada Wing Sword before putting it back into the sheath .
Lu Fan was covering his nose and mouth with the blanket . His brows knitted .
He didn’t even look at the three slaughtered Confucianist men .
“Sister Ning, let’s go up the wall . ”
Lu Fan kept one hand over his nose and mouth and tapped the other one lightly on the blanket .
His voice was a little shaky at first .
Ning Zhao’s face bloomed with a charming smile . Instead of answering, she continued to gently push the wheelchair forward . Her gait carried them smoothly past the three dead bodies, and the four of them resumed their walk to the city wall .