Fang Han is dead.
The youth protégé of the Fang Clan, the mightiest and most promising warrior of the next generation, lay dead with his throat slashed, his face consumed by fear. He would never wake up again.
Just as Ling Xian had said, the latent dragon was just a latent dragon. The creature had never traveled the universe, never reached the heavens, how could it ever fight the mighty Sword of Extinction?
Ten elite fighters, the future pillars of the Fang Clan, all perished.
Perished at the hands of one man.
His name is Ling Xian.
The death of Fang Han spelled doom for the rest of his Clan. Ling Xian spun his sword, one death per strike. Only a few moments after Fang Han fell, the rest were no more. This was an implausible achievement, a story for history books.
From embarking on this road to Alchemy to dominating the Eyes of Execution as a cultivator of the sixth realm, it had taken Ling Xian less than a month!
In the history of alchemy, the history of this world, how many could have achieved a similar feat?
One simply cannot deny that Ling Xian had exuded dominance that secured him a spot amongst the legends.
It was dusk when the battle finally ended. The color of the fading sun mirrored that of blood drained from the dismembered bodies of the massacre that had just taken place there. Everywhere one looked, unrecognizable body parts were scattered across the field, adding a sad and desolate sentiment to an otherwise beautiful evening.
The sound of silence echoed through the forest. The members of the Ling Clan stared at Ling Xian in worship, admiration, and adoration.
The black coat danced gently in the wind.
Even though he appeared emaciated and exhausted, to his admirers, Ling Xian resembled a heroic statue who stood in between Heaven and Earth, holding the universe in its place. Surrounded by a blissful aura, he appeared as though he would live forever.
In their minds, Ling Xian's heroic deeds were on an instant replay - expanding those magnificent wings, swinging that legendary sword, killing without blinking an eye.
Those images had been inked into their heads and hearts, never to be forgotten.
A flush of admiration overtook Ling Fei, who observed Ling Xian with blushed cheeks and wide eyes. A seed of love had been hopelessly planted.
Ling Tian Xiang, of course, shared her feelings. Aside from Liao Cang Qiong, Ling Tian Xiang was the person closest to and knew most about Ling Xian. Her admiration for him had begun long ago, ever since the time Ling Xian saved her life.
"This was the second time he'd saved my life. My life is now completely his. How wonderful would it be if he didn't have the blood of the Lings flowing through his veins." Ling Tian Xiang sighed. Where and to whom could she seek comfort in her sorrow?
Beauties had always lusted after heroes.
And Ling Xian was unmistakably the most admired hero of his generation.
Arriving injured in the midst of a crisis that decided life and death. The commanding stomp that sealed the fates of enemies, the lightning flash that opened the heavens…
If these could not define a hero, what could?
Ling Xian's long, black hair danced in the wind around that perfectly handsome face. His bright white wings slowly expanded and became a prominent backdrop to the fearful sword drenched in blood. A mix of the divine and the condemned! A mix of good and evil!
At this moment, a hint of arrogance and dominance could be traced from his gaze.
The quietness that dominated the air gradually turned into a sea of whispers.
"Ling Xian is too strong! He slaughtered the most fearsome warriors of the Fang Clan all by himself. He didn't struggle one bit, he killed them so effortlessly!"
"Ha ha, that was a good feast for the eyes. He could lead our Clan to the top, extend our powers beyond the City of Qing and build our own city!"
"That arrogant prick, Fang Han, undefeated before meeting Ling Xian. Look how easily he was killed. If I had Ling Xian's powers, girls wouldn't reject me so easily."
Ling Xian had overtaken the top spot in the minds and hearts of everyone who witnessed the preceding events. This place surpassed even those of the Elders and Leaders of the Ling Clan.
However, as the spectators whispered and chatted amongst themselves, Ling Xian revealed a bitter smile. He could no longer withstand the pain of his injuries. Coughing blood, Ling Xian fell victim to a dizzy spell and collapsed to the ground.
But as he fell, Ling Xian suddenly smelt a lovely scent of lavender. Instead of the cold, damp, dusty ground of the forest, his body fell into a pair of soft arms. Then all went black. Ling Xian lost consciousness.
Ling Tian Xiang and Ling Fei were standing closest to Ling Xian, and both had their gazes upon him. When he began to faint, they rushed to his side and simultaneously protected him from his fall.
Ling Tian Xiang got to Ling Xian a flash quicker than Ling Fei. Cradling him in her arms, Ling Tian Xiang put her fingers under his nostrils and felt a warm breath rush out. She sighed in relief and said to the concerned faces around her, "He has only fainted. He should be alright."
Everyone let out a sigh of relief. Their worries eased.
Their concerns were genuine. They were alive because of him. If anything had happened to Ling Xian, they would not be able to forgive themselves.
Upon hearing that Ling Xian had only fainted, Ling Fei also relaxed. However, upon seeing that Ling Tian Xiang had gotten to her object of affection first, and how tightly she clung onto him, Ling Fei's eyebrow arched in displeasure. "Aunty, your injuries are serious, you need to rest. He's too heavy for your wounds, let me take over."
A seemingly innocent request exposed her real intentions.
She would not let Ling Tian Xiang hold someone she had affections for.
"Fei Fei, your injuries aren't light either. I'm your Aunty, I can't possibly let you take the burden," Ling Tian Xiang responded with a sneer, seeing right through Ling Fei's jealous intentions and continued, "Aunty is slightly more skilled than you, these injuries are nothing to be concerned about. My caring for him is more adequate."
"But…" Ling Fei was infuriated and wanted to rebuttal. However, Ling Tian Xiang interrupted her rudely, "No buts! What, you don't trust Aunty?"
She emphasized the word "Aunty" to reminded Ling Fei who was of a higher rank and therefore deserved respect from the younger generation.
Ling Fei was a smart girl and understood the implications at once. She pursed her lips in protest and thought, [You just want Ling Xian for yourself. We all grew up together, you're my "Aunty" in name only, why bring out this nonsense!]
In that instant, a dark-skinned fellow let out a laugh and quickly said, "Let's ah… give him to me to…"
[Look after him.]
These words were forced back down Ling Hu's throat as he realized that a pair of murderous eyes was upon him.
"Give him to you to do what?" Ling Tian Xiang smiled generously, eyeing Ling Hu with a suspicious warmth.
"No… nothing…" Ling Hu waved his hands in a hurry. "You looking after my big brother, of course, I can rest assured."
"I think we should do a thorough examination of his body, see if the injuries are grave. Then find a place to rest for the night. The Hidden Territory is not a peaceful place these days. If beasts have found us, we'd all be dead." Ling Zhan suggested, ending this awkward standstill.
His suggestion hit home, Ling Tian Xiang nodded enthusiastically in agreement, realizing how inappropriate her fight against Ling Fei had been given the situation. She released a piece of her soul into Ling Xian's body, sending it to examine every major organ, artery and other vitals, looking for signs of injury.
Moments later, Ling Tian Xiang inhaled deeply and her brows furrowed together.
"What's the matter? Is he hurt? Is it serious?" Everyone asked in unison.
"Look for yourselves." Ling Tian Xiang covered her mouth, tears flooded down her cheeks.
Everyone sent in pieces of their souls in search for internal injuries, and each one came out with a gasp.
"All his vital are out of position, his arteries smashed and entangled. These injuries were not the result of a single battle. My god, he slaughtered so many skilled fighters with these types of injuries? What a miracle!"
"That's not all. Look at his pelvis, he must have shattered it with enormous force. What a testament to his strength that such a battle failed to render his pelvis useless. Impossible!"
"Unbelievable! What has he experienced these past few days that could've resulted in such horrific injuries? And these injuries hadn't killed him, another testament to his strength.
Everyone felt a little misty-eyed, overcome with worries and distress.
"We have all just witnessed what Ling Xian had done during the battle. He won with ease. So these injuries are definitely not from this battle." Ling Zhan analyzed. "Also, these injuries are definitely not sustained from a single battle. My guess is he had fought a least a dozen battles in the past few days. He suppressed them until now."
He was right. Ling Xian had spent the majority of his time fighting humans and beasts since entering the Hidden Territory. From the Xuan Ming Snake to the Golden Tiger to the Emerald Eyed Snow Lion, he had slaughtered no less a hundred beasts. Every battle had been a fight to the death. He was a cultivator of the sixth realm, his injuries were grave.
Moments ago, seeing that the last threats from the Fangs had been exterminated, Ling Xian finally began to relax. The injuries he had been suppressing had thus been released.
However, this only further proved how incredibly strong he was.
A lone soldier, fighting his own battles against countless deadly beasts had only fainted from his injuries. This was a miracle in itself.
This was not possible even for Ling Tian Qing, who was half way through his Foundational training.
Mighty skills were not enough to accomplish this feat, they must be supplemented by a rock-hard physique and an iron will. Only then can one emerge from this many epic battles alive.
Ling Xian had all three qualities.
His worldly skills made up for his lack of cultivator training. The Majestic Blood had sustained his lasting form. The hardships of his childhood had given him the will of a divine being.
These qualities made Ling Xian an undefeatable legend.