As Nie Tian once again landed heavily on the ground, he looked up at the floating Dong Li, his eyes narrowed, and his expression grim.
Thanks to his Heaven Eyes’ keen perception, he could feel that the aura Dong Li released into her surroundings was clearly mixed with a mysterious force from the black phoenix.
It was obvious that there was an outside force inside of her.
It was none other than that mysterious force that had greatly boosted her battle prowess and fighting aura.
“What a fierce woman!” Nie Tian felt increasingly amazed.
At that moment, as he once again slammed his Flame Star into Dong Li’s bone shield, she lifted her muscular but slender left leg and kicked Nie Tian in his lower abdomen at lightning speed.
Nie Tian, who had just exploded into the air, seemed as if he were hit by a metal war chariot, and fell to the ground.
A wisp of blood flowed out of the corner of Nie Tian’s mouth.
A mouthful of blood suddenly escaped his mouth. Nie Tian’s expression grew unprecedentedly grim as his Flame Star-bearing arm was covered in bulging veins.
Only as of this moment did he wake up to the truth that, having drawn on the black phoenix’s strength, Dong Li’s battle prowess had gone far beyond her cultivation base.
Even if she hadn’t used tricks to lure that Qi warrior from the Realm of Black Marsh to approach her, she would have had no problem beating him fair and square.
All she had needed to do was draw on her beast spirit’s strength.
But clearly, Dong Li hadn’t considered that man as a worthy opponent at all. Therefore, she hadn’t used any of the black phoenix’s strength, but rather finished him quickly with a trick.
“The clock is ticking, Nie Tian.” Dong Li was wreathed in a sphere of dark spiritual power, giving her the look of a blossoming devilish flower.
The enormous, black phoenix was still fluttering its wings behind her, and still hadn’t attacked Nie Tian directly.
Floating in midair, Dong Li looked down at Nie Tian, a taunting smile appearing at the corner of her mouth, a devilish light glittering in her pitch-black pupils.
She didn’t forget to take the time to crush Nie Tian’s spirit during their fierce battle. “I haven’t gone all-out yet. If this is all you’ve got, then you’d better be prepared to watch your grandfather and aunt die.”
It seems that she intended to crush Nie Tian in every possible way, so that whenever Nie Tian thought of her in the future, he would relive the utter defeat and sense of helplessness.
She needed to destroy Nie Tian!
As Dong Li stopped to taunt him, Nie Tian took the opportunity to scan the vicinity with his Heaven Eyes.
Frowning, he discovered that Han Mu and a few powerful experts from the Dong Clan were leading the people from the Cloudsoaring Sect closer and closer to Black Water Lake.
He even discovered that Luo Xin, who had stayed on Black Water Lake’s shore, was now being watched by a handful of Dong Clan members.
He estimated the time he had inwardly...
Soon, he reached the conclusion that it would take Han Mu and the others no more than a quarter hour to arrive by Black Water Lake.
“I only have a quarter hour left,” He muttered to himself.
Then, he summoned all of his seven Heaven Eyes to where he was, and he no longer kept watch on what was happening in the vicinity, not even what was happening to his grandfather and the others from the Cloudsoaring Sect.
He assumed a tight grip on the Flame Star with his right hand, while his empty left hand started to shine with dazzling starlight.
In the next moment, he splayed his left hand, and starsparks that were as bright as the stars in the heavens appeared in his palm one after another.
By the time there were five starsparks floating above his palm, he didn’t stop, but rather continued to condense star power.
Back when he had been in the Realm of Split Void, limited by his cultivation base, he had only been able to form five starsparks.
However, now that he had advanced to the late Heaven stage, the stardew in his vortex of star power was much purer and richer than when he had been in the Realm of Split Void.
As Nie Tian continued to condense his star power, a sixth starspark gradually came to shape in his palm.
As soon as it appeared, the six starsparks started rotating at a high speed before a brand-new formation was eventually formed.
Illuminated by the six starsparks, Nie Tian’s left arm seemed to be painted with a layer of bright starlight. A moment later, his entire left arm turned silvery-white and was given a metallic luster.
“This must be a secret magic he picked up from the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace!” Gazing curiously at his left arm and the six shining starsparks, Dong Li wasn’t in a hurry to launch her attacks, as if she were intentionally waiting for him to gather his star power.
At this moment, the three groups of explorers had already been cleared from the area by members of the Dong Clan.
Luo Xin, who was a significant distance from Nie Tian, didn’t have her own Heaven Eyes, and thus didn’t have a clue regarding what was happening between Nie Tian and Dong Li.
However, another group of people had arrived quietly.
Their leader was Qin Yan from the Water Moon Chamber of Commerce, the girl who had taken Nie Tian to the Cloudsoaring Sect’s residence in the Realm of a Hundred Battles when he had first arrived.
Standing beside her were six Qi warriors from the Water Moon Chamber of Commerce.
A member of the Dong Clan appeared in front of Qin Yan and asked, “What brings you here, Miss Qin?”
Wearing a long, green dress and light makeup, Qin Yan constantly looked off towards the area where Nie Tian and Dong Li were fighting with her bright, watery eyes. “I received word that some unforeseen event occurred around Black Water Lake. Also, I have urgent matters to discuss with Dong Li. I can sense people fighting over there. Is that Dong Li?”
Qin Yan’s cultivation base was at the late Greater Heaven stage, which was even higher than Dong Li’s. Therefore, she sensed the terrifying aura unleashed by the black phoenix as soon as she arrived by Black Water Lake.
She was well-aware that the black phoenix was Dong Li’s beast spirit.
However, she found it hard to understand that she would actually fight someone in the Dong Clan’s territory.
Normally, whenever Dong Li viewed someone as an eyesore, all she would need to do was call upon the patrol teams in the vicinity, and they would take care of the rest.
Why in the world would she summon her black phoenix beast spirit?
The more she thought about it, the odder she found it.
The member of the Dong Clan seemed to know that she was close to Dong Li. He nodded and said, “You’re right. Miss Dong is over there.”
“Alright, I’ll go talk to her,” Qin Yan said.
“Umm... I’m afraid she can’t talk now.” The member of the Dong Clan seemed to be in a dilemma, as his gaze shifted to those who had come with Qin Yan.
“Alright, you stay here. I’ll go over there by myself.” Qin Yan commanded the members of the Water Moon Chamber of Commerce she had brought with her to stay, and before the member of the Dong Clan in front of her granted her access, she blurred into a flash and shot off.
“Miss Qin! Miss Qin!!” The member of the Dong Clan shouted, hoping to stop her, yet Qin Yan rapidly disappeared into the distance.
Several dozen seconds later, Qin Yan suddenly appeared in front of Nie Tian and Dong Li.
Dong Li, who was floating in midair with her black phoenix behind her, was taken aback upon seeing her. “Qin Yan? What are you doing here?”
After stopping her dashing momentum, Qin Yan saw Nie Tian and blurted, her face filled with surprise, “It’s you! Wu Tian!”
“Wu Tian?” Dong Li snorted coldly, a sneer appearing at the corner of her mouth. Then she turned to Qin Yan and said, “What made you come such a long way to find me here?”
“I’ve got to talk to you about some urgent business,” Qin Yan said.
“Give me a moment.” Dong Li waved at her, beckoning her not to interrupt her battle against Nie Tian. “Wait for me at the perimeter. This is between me and him”
“Can I stay and watch?” Qin Yan laughed softly.
“No!” Dong Li shot her a hard look.
Qin Yan secretly examined Nie Tian with her bright, watery eyes, as she became increasingly curious about him.
The Flame Star in Nie Tian’s right hand, the six starsparks floating in his left palm, and the odd changes to his left arm made Qin Yan wonder.
However, she couldn’t figure out Nie Tian’s real identity.
“Qin Yan!” Dong Li called out in her womanly voice, looking somewhat upset. “Wait for me outside, will you? I’ve got some personal issues to settle with him, and I don’t want to be interrupted!”
After a pause, she added, “Not even by you.”
“Oh, alright.” Qin Yan nodded as she gazed at Nie Tian with a strange expression, as if she had picked up something. “I shall leave you to it then.”
With these words, Qin Yan walked away from this region.
However, the strange look in her eyes right before she left made Dong Li suspicious about her intentions.
“You’re running out of time!” shouted Dong Li.
The black phoenix behind her seemed to let out a soundless screech, and a surge of raging, dark spiritual power suddenly spread out with her as the center.
CRACKLE! CRACKLE! CRACKLE!
Wherever the dark spiritual power spread, the ground cracked open, and strange sounds filled the air.
As the dark spiritual power swept across the grassland, the blast shredded the grass and sent it flying everywhere.
Facing the incoming torrential, dark spiritual power, the six starsparks in Nie Tian’s left hand morphed into a streak of starlight and shot forward.
The formation they formed seemed to have evolved into a miniature nebula. Dazzling starlight constantly flashed within it, channeling the power between starsparks and multiplying the might of the formation.
As the formation of starsparks made contact with the surge of dark spiritual power, an uncanny force, which seemed to originate from the deepest parts of the starry river in the sky, burst forth from within the mysterious formation.
The dark spiritual power that came like a flood was instantly penetrated by the starlight unleashed by the formation of starsparks.
The black phoenix behind Dong Li let out a loud screech for the first time, and its eyes, which Nie Tian hadn’t even noticed until now, suddenly lit up.