Chapter 226: One in a Hundred
In the distance, Liu Suifeng looked at the sudden change in the situation. He felt suspicious as he said, “Why did those two people start fighting? I know that Gao Yang. This is the third time he is participating in the core disciple exam. He is very strong, but he should not be Zhang Lie’s match.”
Xiao Chen laughed and said, “That person is very scheming. He was feigning weakness earlier. There was no reason for him to just barely block those saber Qi attacks.”
“What is he thinking? Is he not afraid of Zhang Lie really making a move to destroy him?” Liu Suifeng asked, suspecting a trick.
Xiao Chen withdrew the smile on his face and said seriously, “This is where his brilliance lies. He probably has a sure kill move or something like that. It is possible that from the moment Zhang Lie landed in front of him, he could have ended it.”
Just as Xiao Chen spoke, the originally bright sky suddenly turned dark. A strong wind blew up the sand on the ground, dust filled the air.
Zhang Lie, who was originally prepared to deal with Gao Yang, turned grave. He discovered there was an Essence shield in front of him, blocking the sand. He felt suspicious as he said, “What’s going on? Why did such a strong wind suddenly appear? Is there a change in weather?”
Gao Yang looked at this sudden gust of strong wind. Zhang Lie had stopped because of it. He could not help but feel slightly disappointed. How unfortunate!
After the strong wind disappeared, a black flag appeared in front of everyone’s eyes. It flew over from the horizon, getting nearer until it reached the drill grounds.
The flag had a black background with white words and yellow borders. There were two words on the fluttering flag—Heaven Saber. The flag’s pole had simple floral patterns and a golden dragon coiling around it.
The speed of the flag’s flight was very slow, but the might it carried was very shocking. Everywhere it passed, the air parted like it was water.
An inner disciple did not know what it was. In the end, he was knocked off by the flag and vomited a big mouthful of blood. The Jade Maiden Peak elders immediately caught him; he had lost his right to continue with the exam.
Everyone paled as they scattered everywhere. They looked at the black flag as they made way for it. Before long, the flag flew to an area not far from the front of Xiao Chen.
Suddenly, the chief examiner, who was on the ground, said, “Only by capturing a black flag will one pass this exam. Whoever who captures a flag will end their exam immediately.”
After the chief examiner spoke, the flag which people avoided immediately turned into an object of high demand. Everyone did all they could to snatch the flag.
Liu Suifeng, who was behind Xiao Chen, could not resist and wanted to make a move. This was because he and Xiao Chen were the ones closest to the flag. If they made a move, it was very likely they could obtain the flag.
“Don’t make a move first,” Xiao Chen quickly said.
Liu Suifeng did not understand and asked, “Why? After we obtain it, we can jump down immediately and end this exam. There should not be any problems!”
Xiao Chen pointed and said, “Look at those people, the ones with true strength in the sect. Have any of them made a move?”
When Liu Suifeng heard this, he realized it was as Xiao Chen said. Mu Heng, Zhang Lie, Gao Yang, and such people did not make a move. It was as though nothing was related to them.
“I got it!” a Gangyu Peak disciple shouted excitedly as he grabbed the flag pole in one hand.
Just as he wanted to jump off the spear formation, all sorts of attacks flew at him.
All these attacks look spectacular and very dense. Aside from the Gangyu Peak disciple, the disciples of other Peaks all executed their strongest attacks.
With so many attacks, even if he was an Inferior Grade Martial Saint, he would not be able to block them; how could a Martial Grand Master do so?
Before he could land on the ground, he was severely injured. He was completely covered in wounds, and blood was flowing out. The black flag left his hand and returned to the sky.
Liu Suifeng’s heart was beating very hard and fast when he saw this. Fortunately, Xiao Chen had stopped him. Otherwise, the one lying on the ground now could be him.
“How pitiful. That person will require at least three months to recover.”
“That’s too cruel. They did not hold back their attacks at all. What’s going on with this round of the core disciple exam?”
When the inner disciples on the spectator stands saw the tragic situation, they were astonished. The previous core disciple exams were intense as well, but this exam was just tragic; it was incredibly cruel.
The exam could only end after the flag is captured. With so many people here, there would definitely be more than one flag. Hence, there was no need to rush for one. Whoever who got the first flag would definitely suffer from the attacks of everyone. This was the principle of ‘the shot hits the bird that pokes its head out.’
Even if it was Xiao Chen, he would not have been able to escape the earlier situation unscathed.
Xiao Chen extended out his Spiritual Sense and searched in the direction the flag came from. He kept extending it until he saw the master of the flag more than a thousand meters away from the drill grounds.
A black-clothed man was standing on a tall tower. There were five flags fluttering noisily in the wind behind him. The face of this person was blurred out by the sun.
The Qi and blood of his body were incomparably exuberant. Combined with the flags behind him, his aura was surging. He had the might of a powerful army, as though he could trample on the heavens.
He was close to two thousand meters away from them, the limit of Xiao Chen’s Spiritual Sense. Hence, Xiao Chen was not able to clearly see this person’s appearance, he could only get a vague image.
“This person is a peak martial King at the very least. The Heavenly Saber Pavilion is certainly full of hidden talents. There are experts everywhere,” Xiao Chen sighed to himself.
Through his Spiritual Sense, he could see five black flags in that person’s surroundings. The flags were spinning continuously, a spiraling stream of air appearing in front of them.
In the next moment, the five flags headed for the formation on the drill ground. Initially, they were very fast. When they got nearer, they slowed down.
However, this reduction is speed was relative; it only became slower to high-ranked cultivators. Ordinary people or low-ranked cultivators would not be able to tell the difference; to them, it was several times faster than a chariot.
This time, some of the stronger inner disciples on the spear tips did not hold back. Their Essence soared and they shot out, leaving after-images behind.
Liu Suifeng saw that Xiao Chen still did not make a move. He asked, “Ye Chen, are you still not making a move? The number of flags is probably limited. After every batch is fired, that is one batch less.”
Xiao Chen said indifferently, “You can go snatch, it is not time for me yet.”
Another ten flags flew over again. The wind blew strongly in the formation, dust flew everywhere. This time, everyone was fired up. Even some of the people who wanted to hide themselves made a move.
The wind was blowing strongly and sand was everywhere in the formation. There were many figures in the air, chasing after the flags continuously. The battle was incredibly tragic. Occasionally, there would be someone who got sneak attacked, causing them to lose their right to continue the exam.
However, even under such conditions, there were some people who did not make a move. They simply stood quietly on the spear tips. They were not anxious at all, it was as though they had forgotten the requirements of the exam.
Aside from Xiao Chen, Zhang Lie, Mu Heng, and Gao Yang, there was one person from each of the other three peaks who did not make a move. These seven people each represented a Peak. In reality, they were also the strongest seven people in this exam.
“I finally got it!” a Tianyue Peak disciple shouted as he hugged his flag after he landed on the ground. He ignored the cuts all over his body. His wounds were dripping with blood as he revealed a joyful smile.
The Jade Maiden Peak Elders rushed over immediately and checked his injuries. The chief examiner nodded his head and recorded down his number. Someone had finally passed the second stage of the exam.
“Xiu! Xiu! Xiu!”
The tragic battle continued. There were people who jumped off continuously with flags, successfully passing the stage. However, there were more people who were covered in wounds. They fell off empty-handed, losing the right to continue the exam.
Liu Suifeng grabbed a black flag and an excited smile appeared on his face. He executed his Movement Technique with all his might, doing his best to dodge all the attacks sent at him.
It seemed like he was about to succeed in avoiding all the attacks when a few figures chased after him. At this moment, Liu Suifeng was exhausted, he had no means of moving around in mid-air. The situation seemed dire.
“Purple Thunder True Fire! Shoot!”
A boundless, limitless flame started burning in Xiao Chen’s right eye. Streams of flames shot out at the people in the air like arrows.
The speed of the flaming arrows was very fast. The few people in the sky did not have time to dodge and were struck. They cried miserably and fell to the ground. Liu Suifeng took advantage of this opportunity and quickly landed.
“It’s a little strange, that flame seems to be quite extraordinary. However, it has been exposed. It should be easy to deal with now!” one of the seven people not making a move muttered to himself.
The moment Xiao Chen’s Spiritual Sense detected Liu Suifeng landing on the ground safely, he completely relaxed. Although he had exposed one of his trump cards, it was worth it.
The strong wind scattered and the fifteen black flags were finally all snatched away. The Tianyue Peak disciples were indeed strong; out of the fifteen flags, about half were snatched away by them.
The remaining people noticed the seven people who did not make a move. They knew that something was not quite right and they all tacitly jumped down, giving up their right to continue the exam.
At this moment, it became extremely quiet. No one would expect that there was chaos here just a minute ago. Only the blood-stained sand silently spoke of the tragic battle that just occurred.
The inner disciples in the spectator stands, the inner disciples who did not pass, and the Peak masters and Main Hall Elders on the high platform focused on those seven people.
“This first place of this core disciple exam will definitely come from out of these seven people. This exam is extraordinarily intense.”
“It is just the second stage and more than 200 people have been eliminated. There are only twenty-odd disciples left. If the rules were like the past, with fifty spots of core disciples, all of these people should have passed.”
“There are definitely less than fifty spots. You can tell with one glance that this exam is not simple. I think there are at most ten spots.”
“I wonder how many flags will fly over in this batch. If there are less than seven, then some people out of this strongest seven will be eliminated.”
The ordinary inner disciples in the spectator stands looked at the seven people. They all had complicated expressions. These people, due to various reasons, were not able to become core disciples. However, when they saw this core disciple exam, they felt that they were fortunate.
The blood below the formation did not come from nowhere. They were left by the inner disciples taking part in this exam. Several of them almost died. Aside from those who had given up on their own initiative, almost no one had come out unscathed.