But nobody along the winding streets felt its warm touch. To them, winter had come, sending chills and terror down their spines.
Especially the two currently lying haplessly in the middle of the street, coughing up blood…
The challengers understood clearly that Ling Xian wasn’t an ordinary cultivator. But nothing could have prepared them for this, that a handsome, kind looking youth was capable of unleashing such horror.
"Speak, how would you like to die?"
Ling Xian stood like a statue, completely unmoved as he spoke those terrifying words. Fear came over the middle-aged man. But there was nowhere to go but forward. So he did. "Young fellow, if you back out now, this won’t end messily. I’ll spare your life. But if you insist, I’ll spill every last drop of your blood!"
"Ha, back out? Spare my life?"
The expression in Ling Xian’s eyes hardened even more. He continued, "Seems like you’ve become utterly irrational. You must be used to being on top and looking down on those you perceive to be inferior to you. Your life is in my hands, and you dare threaten me? What an idiot you are!"
Ling Xian shook his head as his voice trailed off. He didn’t want to waste any more breaths on these people. The thought of the humiliation they had inflicted on Lin Qing Yi was enough to drive him to kill.
Seeing that the youth showed no fear, the middle-aged man turned pale. He bellowed, "Kid, this is my last warning. You do not want to irritate a man of my background and stature. Leave now, and you may stay alive!"
"Save your words for hell!"
Ling Xian could no longer contain his rage. In less than a blink of an eye, he disappeared and reappeared feet away from the middle-aged man and extended his fist.
A violent windstorm emerged out of nowhere, collecting dust and debris and hurling them down into the crowd. The forces of a thousand mountains came crashing down at once.
The pupils of the middle-aged man contracted as he tried to hold on against the incoming windstorm. He finally understood how this youth was able to defeat both his companions with one strike. The youth’s brute strength had surpassed the forces of a Ninth-Realm weapon.
"Since when did such a terrifying kid emerge from the Zhou Dynasty?" The middle-aged man muttered to himself in shock. But he had no time to think. In a flash of a moment, he summoned his own powers and unleashed a long, emerald spear directly towards Ling Xian’s throat.
As the spear dashed across the wind toward Ling Xian, the tip of the spear opened to reveal the spirit of a giant snake!
"This strike is quite alright. Anything less would be an insult to your advance-staged foundational prowess."
Ling Xian commented casually. Confronted with the flying spear, he calmly extended two fingers and caught the tip of the spear in between them.
A crisp sound echoed throughout the air. The mighty spear broke in half in between his fingers.
"His physical strength is indeed comparable to a Ninth-Realm weapon!"
The middle-aged man inhaled deeply, overcome by feelings of fear and regret. This was one of his only Ninth-Realm weapons. This was a huge personal loss for him.
"An insignificant weapon of the Ninth-Realm, why do you even bother? Bring them all if you can. I’ll break them in your face!" Ling Xian hollered. He retracted his fingers to form a tight fist and unleashed it in the direction of the terrified man.
The colors of the sky darkened. The day had become darker than night. Wind bellowed mercilessly as the earth cowered under the immense pressure of Ling Xian’s strength.
The middle-aged man knew Ling Xian was speaking the truth. He had no choice. Biting down on his lower lip, he summoned his most prized weapon of the Eighth-Realm – a blood-red, 10-foot long halberd.
The Thunderbolt Halberd.
The middle-aged man recovered slightly with the weapon in hand.
Standing firm against the incoming fist, he screamed out loud to unleash his mighty halberd directly towards Ling Xian’s temple.
Fist and halberd collided in the midst of a magnificent aura, igniting a magical wave of fireworks. Ling Xian frowned in displeasure. His physical strength felt inadequate in a round against a weapon of the Eighth-Realm.
"Ha ha, kid, your flesh is useless, let’s see how you cope!"
Seeing that his halberd had successfully withstood the force of Ling Xian’s strike, the middle-aged man roared with pride and laughter. His fear evaporated in an instant.
"Why are you delighted? My physical strength is my weakness," Ling Xian responded calmly. He was correct. His flesh was his fallback.
Perhaps someday, his physical prowess would evolve into an impenetrable shield. But now, he was only at the early stages of his training.
"A mouthy duck, kid, I won’t spare you even if you begged me. Come to die!" The middle-aged man let out an evil smirk before launching what he believed to be the lethal blow.
"Is that right? We shall wait and see who ends up begging!"
Ling Xian returned an icy smile and took a huge leap forward. Another wave of terrifying sandstorm gathered behind him. The forces of his advanced-stage foundational powers rushed out and dissipated his opponent’s glowing aura.
"You...you are a foundational level cultivator…of late stages!" Colors drained from the face of the middle-aged man. He had foolishly thought that Ling Xian had used only his physical strength to defeat his two foundational level companions. But it never once occurred to him that this 16-year-old looking youth was his equal.
"What did you think?"
Ling Xian let out another icy smirk and spoke no more. He summoned his Qi, and a bloodstained sword materialized behind him. Suddenly, the world around them plummeted into a cloud of darkness.
The Sword of Extinction!
"Come to die!"
Without a moment of hesitation, Ling Xian took off in the direction of his opponent. Sword in hand, the strike was aimed directly at the heart of the middle-aged man.
The middle-aged man froze. He had correctly guessed the identity of the weapon. There was nothing to be done now but confront the strike head on and deflect the flash of bloody lightning.
But the Sword of Extinction could not be defended by an ordinary weapon. The rage of its owner had been deeply ingrained in its blade.
Following a deafening sound, a tiny crack appeared on the surface of the Thunderbolt Halberd. The middle-aged man stumbled backward, his eyes consumed by terror. But before he could turn around and flee, Ling Xian unleashed a second strike and the halberd fell from the air and broke in half as it hit the ground.
The middle-aged man reacted instinctively and summoned a giant golden shield across the air. The shield glittered brightly against the pitch darkness.
An earsplitting sound pierced through the air as the sword and shield collided. Despite its seemingly boundless powers, the Sword of Extinction could not break through and was locked firmly against the rough surface of the shield.
Ling Xian frowned as he felt the trembling in his palm. He was clouded in suspicion. What type of shield could stop the overwhelming prowess of the Sword of Extinction?
"Ha ha, kid, you are dead meat."
The middle-aged man roared with laughter. Fear and hopelessness disappeared off of his face, to be replaced by a self-deceiving smugness. He bellowed, "Mayor of the Sunset City, the Imperial Shield has been presented, show yourself this instant!"
His words echoed throughout the entire city.
The next moment, a loud, hapless sigh could be heard. But the origin of the sound could not be traced.
"Ah... my visiting friend, for my sake, please let this go."