As the crowds of spectators left the scene, the exchange activity of Ten Thousand Arts Sect and Spirit Sword Sect quietly reached its last act.
Though in accordance with the rules, there was still the five-on-five group fight, the interest of the cultivators on both sides inevitably faded down. People treated this group fight more like an aftertaste after a climax.
Even the disciples who took part in the fight did not take this matter too seriously. Within the Ten Thousand Arts Sect, rather than strategizing, they were actually somewhat eager for the fight; they had the thought of wanting to wipe away the previous shame, but they weren’t that too passionate to prepare for it.
The group fight of the two sects began two days after the final one-on-one fight. This fight was an ideal event to showcase first the friendship and second the harmonious atmosphere. Although the disciples of the two sects would certainly make an all-out effort, there was no murderous intention or even anger in it. Sure enough, the Ten Thousand Arts Sect really showed their proper imposing manner in this round of fight. Their five disciples acted in harmony, casting out spells incessantly one after the other and causing the onlookers off stage to be dazzled and gasped in amazement.
On the other side, Spirit Sword Sect team appeared slightly inferior. Shortly after the start of the fight, Wen Bao and Yue Yun were filled with remorse after being cast off stage by Zhan Ziye’s Annihilation Thunder. Although at that moment Wang Lu had a mind to rescue them, even if he had his strengthened Non-Phase Method by Big Heart Demon Oath, it was still beyond his power to defend four of his teammates in the face of the relentless Zhan Ziye, Ye Feifei, and the others.
When the battle reached its middle stage, Yue Xinyao also had to reluctantly leave. The Spirit Sword Sect team now only had two people, Liu Li and Wang Lu. While on the Ten Thousand Arts Sect side, they still had their original five people team; They didn’t lose anyone at all.
At this point, people thought that the Ten Thousand Arts Sect would smoothly claim the victory and salvage some face. However, the result was quite unexpected.
Because the Ten Thousand Arts Sect could do nothing to the remaining two.
Wang Lu was needless to say; even Liu Li’s Brilliant Sword Heart couldn’t penetrate his three feet sword defense. Zhan Ziye and Ye Feifei had tried their hardest, bombarding him with their strongest long range attack, but it was to no avail. While Liu Li was not as good at defense, her twelve dispersed flying swords were not easy to deal with. Let alone though Wang Lu was unable to protect four people at once, protecting just Liu Li with his Non-Phase Sword Qi was no trouble at all for him.
After being entangled for a while, Wang Lu and Liu Li’s advantage in protracted fight began to manifest. On the Ten Thousand Arts Sect side, their most important defender Lu Qiancai had exhausted all of his talismans, thus unable to protect his teammates from the Brilliant Sword Heart attack. Thereupon, one by one, these fellow disciples were eliminated by Liu Li. Finally, Zhan Ziye attempted to repeat his previous trick, using the Annihilation Thunder to perish together. However, Wang Lu passionately rushed over and tightly embraced him, stuffing all the Annihilation Thunder power back at him, which nearly collapsed Zhan Ziye’s Jade Mansion and primordial spirit.
Both one-on-one fight, as well as group fight, resulted in defeat. Ten Thousand Arts Sect had nothing to say anymore. Their several disciples decided to endure the humiliation by going back to their Sect to practice in seclusion, steeling themselves to the hardships of training so that one day they could avenge their grievances.
Before leaving, however, Spirit Sword Sect organized its disciples to send their guests off at the Four Directions Peak. There, the two sides exchanged sincere words to each other; it was quite a touching scene.
"Three years later... no, next year, I will visit you guys once again." With a serious complexion and face filled with indomitable fighting spirit, Zhan Ziye tried to conceal the throbbing and the feeling of anxious within him. "Liu Li, at that time, I will not lose to you again."
The girl tilted her head and said with a puzzled face, "But one year later, you will still lose out to me."
Zhan Ziye never expected to receive such an innocent answer so publicly; his neck stiffened. "Not necessarily!"
Standing on the side, Wang Lu, who came along to send off the visitor, could not help but sigh; he really felt pitiful at this bunch of useless otakus of the Ten Thousand Arts Sect
"Senior Sister Liu Li, that grandson wants to invite you to eat barbecue next time."
The girl’s eyes suddenly became clear and bright, and her smile was as bright as the flower. "Ah, that’s great. I welcome you to come again at anytime!"
With that, she also stretched out her pair of slender jade hands, tightly gripped Zhan Ziye’s hand and shook it up and down. "It’s a deal. Next time you come, you must invite me to eat meat!"
Zhan Ziye suddenly felt two diametrically opposite feelings clash inside and stir his heart. One was the kind of "the happiness that comes from the touch of the gentle and delicate hands", and another one as "It seems like in my entire life, I will not have a chance". Soon, that childlike innocence was broken into pieces of debris, and he suffered a blow as serious as the strike from the Brilliant Sword Heart.
In addition, Hai Yunfan was also filled with emotion. "Brother Wang, you have given me a lesson."
"Little Hai, when did I ever give you one? Don’t talk nonsense."
"... Hehe." Hai Yunfan laughed at himself. "It’s true. Since five years ago when I left the Spirit Sword Sect, I have been thinking. If I didn’t enter the Ten Thousand Arts Sect and instead became a fellow disciple as Brother Wang, what kind of scene would that be?"
Wang Lu frowned and took a half-step back. "Little Hai, seriously, you are now creeping me out."
Hai Yunfan decided to ignore Wang Lu and continue his monologue, "This matter has been tangling me for a long time, but now I instead can finally relax. Compared to being disciples of the same sect, becoming your opponent is indeed more interesting... of course, becoming an enemy is out of the question."
Opponent and enemy were indeed two very distinct concepts.
"Next time, I will try not to lose to you." Hai Yunfan said and shook his head. "Of course, coming from a defeated opponent, people would laugh at it. However, I still have to say my declaration. Brother Wang, I look forward to our next meeting."
Wang Lu looked at Little Hai. "Okay."
"Ah, I almost forgot. I brought a gift for you." Hai Yunfan handed Wang Lu a piece of sincere paper. "It may be useful for you."
Wang Lu took it and found that it was a royal seal of the Grand Cloud Empire; he could not help but smile.
Little Hai was indeed little Hai. When it was time to become intimate, he became especially intimate. With the royal seal of the Grand Cloud Empire, the inter-country business of the Wisdom Sect would move one step further. Currently, Wang Lu didn’t need additional resources; the spirit stones was particularly abundant. However, this royal seal was not something that could easily be bought by money.
After sending off the Ten Thousand Arts Sect people, Spirit Sword Sect once again became deserted. In this short of half a month, they really had experienced a lot of things. When the Cloud Wave Boat gradually disappeared into the distance, swallowed by the brilliance of the sun light, many people felt truly exhausted.
However, no matter how exhausted they were, there were still works that needed to be done.
For example, the settlement of a certain crazy gambler. In dueling against Liu Li, Wang Lu had bet nearly one hundred million on himself. It was the biggest single stake in the history of gambling in the Nine Regions in decades. In the end, he ultimately won more than one hundred million spirit stones, which could be rated as an unbeatable record. For such a huge amount of money, even an institution as big as the Mysterious Sky Mansion couldn’t come up with such a cash in a short amount of time. In the end, the regional leader of the Mysterious Sky Mansion in the Blue River Region personally delivered over a hundred first rate Mysterious Sky Crystals, which caused countless of disciples’ eyes to spring wide in shock.
In accordance with Wang Lu’s prior agreement, he gave fifty pieces of them to his Master. The happy woman announced on the spot her intent to marry off herself to that regional leader, and the marriage would be held right then. This made the regional leader of the Mysterious Sky Mansion feel extremely awkward. Fortunately, the Sect Leader and Disciplinary Elder promptly curbed back the woman’s ambition with their sword light, forcing her to leave the matter at that.
Suddenly becoming rich from being poor, the Fifth Elder was completely without the calm and composure of an Immortal Cultivator. She held the fifty pieces of first rate Mysterious Sky Mansion Crystal and cheerfully descended the mountain on her flying sword, saying that she wanted to carefully enjoy life. After more than ten days, the woman in white went back on the mountain, surprisingly content to live a humble but virtuous life.
Toward this development, Wang Lu was naturally curious. Becoming disillusioned with the mortal world in just ten days, was this woman’s self-cultivation that amazing? However, when he asked, the answer was like a thunder strike.
"Ran out of money so had to come back."
Ran out of money!?
Wang Lu simply ‘prostrated himself in admiration’; she had actually squandered tens of millions of spirit stones in just ten days!?
However, before he even had the chance to exclaim in surprise, he heard the gentle but eerie question from his Master, "Little Lu, when do we have our marriage?"
Wang Lu couldn’t hold back his yell, "When you pick your moral integrity up!"
Actually, by this time, Wang Lu also had no money in his hand. When his Master freely squandered the money down the mountain for several days, he had transferred all of his winning money back to Wisdom Sect to accelerate its development. During the sect’s rapid growth at this time, it was in a state of financial hunger; no matter how much money was fed into it, it would immediately be digested. Wang Lu firmly believed that when Wisdom Sect finally bloomed and bore fruit, he would harvest his investment this time by several folds.
In any case, the story of the pair of Master and disciple of the Non-Phase Peak who squandered their over a hundred million spirit stones in just ten days had become a glorious legend on the Spirit Sword Mountain.
After that, it was the matter of sect’s lead representative.
In order to inspire progress from the disciples, the Spirit Sword Sect’s Heavenly Sword Hall, under the advice from Wang Lu, setup the system of lead representative. In which, the champion of the single fight on the just-now-ended sect’s competition would be awarded ten years’ time of lead representative authority.
Although there was a great controversy on the final battle, Wang Lu’s victory was beyond doubt. Therefore, after a quick deliberation, Sect Leader Daoist Master Feng Yin acted on behalf of the Heavenly Sword Hall Elders to grant Wang Lu the title of lead representative.
The lead representative inauguration ceremony was held quietly on the Stellar Peak, outside the Sect Leader’s bamboo hut, which was attended by just a few people. Initially, the Spirit Sword Sect wanted to summon all the disciples to the Four Directions Peak to announce the name of the lead representative, in order to inspire their morale. However, who told Wang Lu to be so one of a kind? The initial grand ceremony had to be scrapped.
For Wang Lu, the special authority of the lead representative was far more meaningful than the grand ceremony. Moreover, he never cared what other people think of him. After receiving the gold medal as the symbol of the lead representative from Daoist Master Feng Yin, Wang Lu was ready to descend from there.
However, he heard Daoist Master Feng Yin laugh and say, "Hehe, don’t you want to accompany this new Master of yours for a chat?"
The sect’s lead representative was only under the control of the Sect Leader; theoretically, the relationship was equivalent to that of Master and disciple. Therefore, when Daoist Master Feng Yin voiced out his request, Wang Lu had to stop his footsteps; he turned over and smiled. "By all means."
The old man and Wang Lu sat side by side outside the bamboo hut. After not saying anything for a long time, the old man slowly said, "Since you entered the Spirit Sword Sect, it has been more than five years, but I still remembered clearly your journey on the Immortal Gathering and the obstacles that you came into. At that time, we almost made a big mistake by shutting you out. It still gives me a scare every time I remembered it."
Wang Lu chuckled. "It can’t be that serious right? Spirit Sword Sect is full of talented people. Senior Sister Liu Li and that Senior Sister Zhu Shiyao whom I never met in these more than five years. In any other sect, having one of them is more than enough for them. Actually, it’s not that big of a deal for the sect if I suddenly vanish." Wang Lu earnestly said, "On the contrary, if I hadn’t cultivated here, I wouldn’t have gotten this achievement today."
Daoist Master Feng Yin revealed an incomparably gratified look. "That’s really not easy for you to think like that. However, do not belittle yourself. Although Liu Li and Zhu Shiyao are first rate geniuses in the Nine Regions, the future of Spirit Sword Sect would ultimately land on you."
Wang Lu was silent for a while before saying, "Sect Leader, could it be the Spirit Sword Sect recently suffered an investment failure, and thus needed to be injected with an emergency capital?"
Feng Yin admonished him, "You, this kid, no matter how down and under the Spirit Sword Sect is, it does not covet your stash of money. Besides, do you really think a measly hundred first rate Mysterious Sky Mansion crystals can support the operation of a sect in the five unique?"
Wang Lu said, "That was just a joke. Please continue."
Feng Yin said, "In this Nine Regions, every several hundred or over a thousand years, a generation of heroes would come forth in large numbers; or the surging of the brilliant era. Right now, with the growth of your generation of young people, the glorious and turbulent era is not far away. Liu Li and Zhu Shiyao are indeed top level cultivators, but their flaws are also very serious, so they can’t afford to hold up the Spirit Sword Sect high in the sky. Therefore... today I awarded you the honor of lead representative, in the hopes that you will be worthy of this title and in the future become a veritable Spirit Sword Sect’s lead representative."
Wang Lu didn’t say anything for a while, and then he smiled to the Sect Leader. "Rest assured, I really like this mountain, like this sect and like its people."
Feng Yin suddenly asked, "Then what about your Master?"
Wang Lu was stunned for a moment, and then somewhat embarrassedly said, "Um, about this... if one day she and my mother fell into the river, I will save my mother first and then throw a brick at her!"
This time, it was the Sect Leader who went into silence. Long after, the old man sighed with emotion.
"Throughout her life, she seems unrestrained, but actually, she is in fact lonely. I hope you... just do your best."