Chapter 18 Not Too Long The entire world of martial arts and countless people seemed to be attracted to the young man. An abyss tore the ground open with thick fog arising from inside. Whiz~ Whiz~ In the fog, some white eagles spanning three meters long flew over. The deep abyss was as wide as a hundred feet. However, there seemed to be another world beyond the thick fog. There were giant trees scraping the sky, old vines in the shape of a dragon, roaring beasts, and soaring rare birds. It looked like a wild land. At the far end of the wild land was a black stone castle, which looked like a lying beast. Some muscular men returned with bloody beasts or left with heavy spears. Deep inside the castle was an open area where some children were practicing martial arts. They were aged from six or seven to twelve or thirteen years old. However, due to the circulating vitality and blood inside their bodies, they were more muscular than ordinary children. Over the practice site was a square altar on which sat a middle-aged man. On his thin face, a black beard spread like thorns in contrast with his gray hair. He was wearing a black robe with an empty right sleeve, for he had only one arm. Compared with those in the castle, he looked very weak and thin. However, between his broad and profound breaths, there seemed to be a beast hiding inside his body. A muscular figure came over and stood below the altar. “What’s up?” The middle-aged man slightly opened his eyes. “I went out yesterday and heard that Di Hongtian, the orphan of the Sword Villa, reappeared in the world of martial arts with the Sword Zhongfeng. All the masters have flocked to scramble for it,” the muscular man replied, staring at the middle-aged man. He seemed to be a little anxious. “What?” The middle-aged man suddenly opened his eyes wide. “It’s beyond my expectations that he has still maintained some vitality. Aha . . . good!” On his numb face was a sudden burst of excitement, which was difficult to suppress. “I should leave now!” the middle-aged man said as he stood up. The muscular man nodded with a sigh and said, “It’s just as I expected. Although our clan had escaped from the society for a long time, you can also contact me in case of emergency.” “Hope that day will never come. . . ” The middle-aged man looked up at the dense fog in the sky and slowly shook his head. …… In a secret area of the Central Plains, a black and bare mountain hundreds of feet high stood rigid, as if cast by crude iron. On the mountain, there were dense ravines and countless rugged rocks. Boom! A waterfall was running down as loud as thunder from the top of the mountain. Unexpectedly, what was running was the red and viscous magma instead of stream water. It was so horribly hot that even the air seemed to have been distorted. Seen from the outside, the whole mountain was as blurred as the reflection in the water, which seemed somehow unreal. At the peak stood a huge furnace, in which various colors were entangled and spurted out. The temperature from the furnace was even more terrifying. With the furnaces as the center, the air seemed to have been twisted into groups of light. However, there were some figures sitting quietly around as if they were sitting in a small world centered on these melting pots. At the peak, there was a huge volcanic cave full of magma upon which a huge palace hundreds of feet high was just floating. The palace was divided into four floors, and the walls on the first two floors were all red and crystal clear. Inside, the air was distorted and burning like invisible flames in the high temperature mixed with some faint black ripples. At the far end on the third floor, a figure was sitting with their legs crossed. The air around him had been twisted into a vortex. Sitting there with his legs crossed, he seemed to be sitting in another world. The temperature emitted out of his body was even more terrible than the magma furnace. “Who is that guy?” He spoke slowly with his eyes slightly closed. Huge echoes resounded in the hall. Although it was just a casual inquiry, every word uttered out of his mouth sounded like a giant hammer. "Your Excellency, that guy has practiced the Xuanyuan Dragon Art to promote his strength to an extreme height with profound skills. If there are no challenges from other senior masters, he is surely capable of defending the Sword Zhongfeng." Standing far away, a young man looked at the figure who was sitting cross-legged. He felt the terribly high temperature from that man, and his eyes widened with awe. "Oh?" The man held his breath a little and opened his eyes, where the blue flame was sparkling. "So it’s not a surprise for him to own such a powerful strength after practicing the Xuanyuan Dragon Art." He nodded slightly with a smile and said, “I didn’t expect he’d be vigorous enough to choose that martial art.” “Who has taken action?” “Although some clans are targeting the sword, they just sent some detectives for probe so as not to expose their purposes, except for the Qianfan Clan. Some minor families and clans had also resorted to action, but they were too weak to challenge him, let alone the sword.” The young man shook his head. “The Qianfan Clan?” The figure shook his head and answered calmly, “They are just a gang of bandits.” “Their young master, Ren Yu, tried to challenge him but got injured by the power of the sword.” The young man nodded with a hint of scorn on his face. “Have you found out the one behind him?” the old man asked again. “Not yet. However, he seemed to be in a hurry. I think it’s not hard to find it out if we trace him,” the younger answered. “He disappeared for a decade and now suddenly reappears, having achieved successful practice of the three levels of the Xuanyuan Dragon Art. There must be someone supporting him from behind. In the early stage of practicing the Xuanyuan Dragon Art, a large amount of treasure medicines should be needed to nourish the body; he could not practice it successfully without it.” The man was very sure. "He suddenly appeared in the world of martial arts and showed the Sword Zhongfeng without hesitation. He must have some special purpose; most probably he just came for revenge. . . " "He could even destroy the Sword Villa, which was well-known for its great combat power. I’d like to see what capability he really has." The figure squeezed out a hint of a meaningful smile. “Your Excellency, the Sword Zhongfeng. . . ” the young man couldn’t help but ask. “Although the Sword Xuanyuan is the powerful weapon from ancient times to fight against ghosts and devils, the differentiated Sword Zhongfeng could not yet resist the Qingjin Furnace of our clan. However, as the weapons of ancient times, it’s also significant for our clan. If we can find out the secret of sword casting, we will enjoy immeasurable benefits.” The man then said after a short moment of thinking, "It’s just getting started; no need to be hasty. We’ll just keep an eye on him.” "Your Excellency, can he protect the Sword Zhongfeng?" The young man nodded, but could not resist asking again. "Even the Sword Villa was destroyed at its heyday. Do you think it’s possible for that guy alone?" The man shook his head. "These old guys will not take any action until the Sword Zhongfeng has been turned over, so we should wait with great patience, and it will not be too long."