Chapter 651: Stunning All Sides
Forget the Sacred Sword Palace, even the Regal Pill Palace suddenly found Mu Gaoqi to be completely unfathomable. While outsiders might not know anything of Mu Gaoqi, the Regal Pill Palace disciples had lived under the same roof as him. How could they possibly not understand him? Was this the same cautious and slightly timid Mu Gaoqi they knew? Not only had Mu Gaoqi talked easily and fearlessly in face of Wang Jianyu’s questions and threats, he’d even retorted with supreme indifference. Was this the Mu Gaoqi whose temperament had been known as one as docile as rabbit?
Truth be told, it would’ve been palatable if it was just a change in temperament. But since when had Mu Gaoqi become so mysteriously strong? Now that they thought of it, Mu Gaoqi had already participated in two battles. In the first battle, Mu Gaoqi had fought fiercely against Feng Pao, a fifth rank sect’s seventh level origin realm expert. The battle had looked incredibly intense, and he’d given the impression that he was just a bit better than Feng Pao. However, an attentive person would’ve realized that Mu Gaoqi had only been using a wilted branch as his weapon from beginning to end. He hadn’t executed any moves of his own.
Logically speaking, the second round should’ve been a difficult battle for Mu Gaoqi. But again, he hadn’t used any of his own moves from beginning to end. In the beginning, everyone had thought that Mu Gaoqi had used a powerful defense talisman to protect himself from Wang Jing’s whale king qi currents. It was a barely plausible explanation of that clash. However, could a defense talisman aid Mu Gaoqi in shattering all of Wang Jing’s dharmas with a single snap of his fingers? Obviously impossible!
However, how many profound martial arts techniques could a simple finger snap contain? There were plenty of martial dao heavyweights present, but none of them had seen through what had happened. They reviewed the moves Mu Gaoqi had used to tear apart the qi currents that had locked down the area in the ring. Those restrictive currents had been torn apart like paper, without any discernable power to speak of. He had displayed nothing but crude and simplistic moves again, and so the audience still couldn’t figure out just what stunning move Mu Gaoqi had discreetly employed. In fact, the final kick onto Wang Jing had literally been a move that would be seen during a brawl between commoners. There had been absolutely no technique to speak of.
The battle had been all too preposterous! It was so ludicrous that the assumption that Wang Jing had cooperated with Mu Gaoqi to put on a show sounded more plausible.
Yes, the whole battle had looked so incredibly fake that the people couldn’t help but want to inspect Wang Jing’s injuries and check if they were actually real. However, the sounds of Wang Jing’s broken bones couldn’t be fake, that mouthful of blood couldn’t be fake, and Wang Jianyu’s anger at the destruction of Wang Jing’s dantian couldn’t be fake either!
In that case, Wang Jing hadn’t actually cooperated with Mu Gaoqi to put on a show. After all, who in their right mind would risk the destruction of their dantian to work together with their sworn enemy and put on this tragic act? If this was all true, then this Mu Gaoqi was just too frightening.
Before he’d taken the stage, everyone had thought that Regal Pill Palace had chosen unwisely. They all thought that the decision to send a pill dao genius to duel a martial arts genius was no better than sending a moth into the flames. But now, it would seem that everyone had underestimated Mu Gaoqi!
The victory in the third round meant that he had secured a spot in the Myriad Domain Hidden Dragon rankings.
“Congratulations, junior brother Mu.” Shen Qinghong calmly walked up to Jiang Chen and stretched out his hand.
Seeing that Shen Qinghong was actually sincere with the gesture, Jiang Chen nodded and slapped hands with Shen Qinghong, “Thank you, senior brother Shen.”
Jun Mobai also walked over and smiled, saying, “You’ve hidden your strength well, junior brother. That kick was definitely to everyone’s satisfaction!”
Ling Bi’er and Nie Chong had both beaten their respective opponents and cleared the third round. However, Ling Bi’er had gone through a rather difficult battle before she managed to secure her victory.
Nie Chong was also feeling extremely conflicted as he watched Mu Gaoqi walking down the stage. He’d mocked Mu Gaoqi earlier, saying that Rong Zifeng might as well have taken the former’s place since Mu Gaoqi had struggled so hard during the second battle… Now that he looked back on Mu Gaoqi’s performance, Nie Chong could only feel a burning sensation on his face. He suddenly felt like finding a crack on the ground and hiding inside it.
Yes, that was how he felt.
He had watched the second half of the match, and if he were to conjecture bluntly, he himself only had a 50% chance at victory if he couldn’t suppress Wang Jing from the beginning and had allowed him the time and opening to unleash his trump card. As for imitating Mu Gaoqi’s fighting style, defeating his opponent easily and sending him flying with a kick while chatting and laughing? Simply impossible.
“Junior brother Mu, I have misjudged you. I apologize.” While Nie Chong wasn’t one to hesitate flaunting his strength, he also knew that he really wasn’t qualified to put on airs when even Shen Qinghong himself treated Mu Gaoqi with politeness and courtesy. Therefore, he voiced his apology and gave himself an exit.
Jiang Chen was indifferent in this regard. He shared no relations with Nie Chong, so he naturally wouldn’t take his words to heart at all. He nodded once with a faint smile on his face, “It’s fine.”
Ling Bi’er stood at the back of the group. She looked a bit tired after a difficult battle. Thankfully, the day would end after three rounds of battle. The next round would happen on the morrow.
“Congratulations on your advancement, junior brother.” Ling Bi’er nodded slightly at Jiang Chen.
Jiang Chen gave her a small smile and said, “It seems like you’ve had a bountiful battle as well. You’ve caught a hint of inspiration to break through to the sage realm?”
Ling Bi’er was absolutely astonished, “You can tell?”
Jiang Chen’s consciousness was immeasurably powerful, so naturally he noticed the slight change in Ling Bi’er. In reality, Ling Bi’er’s talent wasn’t any weaker than Shen Qinghong’s. In fact, her potential was even stronger than his. However, her advancement on martial dao had been negatively affected due to her father’s sickness and her concentration on pill dao. Otherwise, her martial arts potential would have allowed her to break through to the sage realm two years ago.
Now that her father’s sickness was cured, the heavy stone in her heart had finally been lifted. Her anxiety was gone and the world had suddenly opened up to her. Naturally, her understanding of martial arts would continuously improve. A difficult battle in the third round had rewarded her plentifully. As a result, the comprehension of martial dao she had accumulated for many years seemed to spring forth like a fountain.
Innumerable martial dao inspirations surged into her mind all at once. Although she couldn’t be sure that it was a sign that she was about to break through to sage realm, at the very least it meant that she had accumulated so much understanding in martial dao that it couldn’t help but show her a path forward. Now that Jiang Chen had pointed it out to Ling Bi’er, she grew even more certain that she had a chance to break through to the sage realm.
If the breakthrough took time, then it would be around three to five months. But if it was quick, then she could break through to sage realm in three or five days’ time.
Dan Chi and Elder Lian Cheng all glanced sideways at Ling Bi’er when they heard Jiang Chen’s words. They had actually been neglecting Ling Bi’er because they had been closely observing Jiang Chen’s battle all this time. Now that they focused on her, they discovered that Ling Bi’er’s origin realm spirit sea was extremely active. Be it inside or outside her body, the signs of breakthrough were incredibly obvious.
“Good! I didn’t think that we Regal Pill Palace will be welcoming the birth of yet another sage realm genius. This is truly an occasion for celebration!” Palace Head Dan Chi laughed to his heart’s content. After casting a rather meaningful glance at Jiang Chen, Dan Chi had to admit that Regal Pill Palace’s younger generation had been provoked into ever astounding improvement since Jiang Chen had shown up. It was obvious that a man of great fortune like Jiang Chen was affecting the young geniuses with his every word and movement.
There were many kinds of geniuses. Some were powerful beyond ken, but they often trod a lonely path all the way to the end. Yet, there were also geniuses who were beloved by fate, and brought luck and fortune to their sect in all sorts of ways.
Jiang Chen was one such example.
He hadn’t entered Regal Pill Palace for more than three or four years, but the wind of change he had brought to Regal Pill Palace was absolutely astounding. Shen Qinghong, a genius of the youth generation, had turned over a completely new leaf. Ling Bi’er’s greatest worry and obstacle in martial dao had been permanently assuaged. Mu Gaoqi’s talent had been unearthed, and as a result, his strength had grown tremendously. In all of these cases, Jiang Chen’s merits couldn’t go unacknowledged. As for the rest of the disciples, while they had not received any personal positive influences from Jiang Chen, he had injected Rosy Valley with an all new temperament with his actions. It was a fire these Regal Pill Palace geniuses hadn’t possessed before.
Moreover, the resources and good fortune Jiang Chen brought to the sect were tangible. Sky rank spirit herbs, earth rank spirit herbs, countless stalks of Sage Fledgling Grass and the recipe of the Longevity Pill…
His merits were literally innumerable if Dan Chi were to list them all properly. Naturally, with his level of intelligence, Dan Chi understood that this was Jiang Chen’s blessing on the Regal Pill Palace.
That night, all the sects settled down where they were and set up camp around the arena. Cultivators didn’t necessarily need to sleep at night. It was just that battles at night were inconvenient. Plus, all living beings went to sleep at night. Cultivators themselves could use the opportunity to reserve and hone their strength.
However, the martial arts competition of the Grand Ceremony was a momentous event that was held once per thirty years. Naturally, it was impossible for most youngsters to calm down and rest. This was especially true for those cultivators who had already been eliminated. They gathered in groups of twos or threes as they discussed the extraordinary things that had happened during the day.
The first two rounds of the battles had passed by blandly, but the third round had much in the way of exciting battles. Of course, the most interesting battles weren’t the battles of the sage realm experts. After all, those battles were all completely one-sided and thus produced only a limited amount of entertainment.
When one spoke of entertainment, the most entertaining match of them all was the conflict between the two sworn enemies, the Regal Pill Palace and the Sacred Sword Palace. On one side was the powerful and high-profile Wang Jing, and on the other, the honest and low-key Mu Gaoqi.
Before the battle had started, almost everyone thought that this battle was going to be a one-sided victory for Sacred Sword Palace. However, the outcome had exceeded everyone’s expectations. To almost universal surprise, Mu Gaoqi had countered and defeated Wang Jing with an almost monstrous level of ability!
That battle was an absolute classic, and it also qualified to be recorded in the history of Myriad Grand Ceremony. As a result, the battle was discussed the most overnight. The clamor raised around Mu Gaoqi’s mysterious abilities was even greater. In fact, plenty of people suspected that Mu Gaoqi was feigning a lack of ability was most likely a sage realm cultivator already.
Apart from Mu Gaoqi’s counterattack against Wang Jing, Ling Bi’er’s even match against a Walkabout Sect’s genius was just as classic. She’d won after a pitched battle, and it was even rumored that she attained great understanding from the battle and showed signs of ascending to sage realm. Naturally, this too became the focus of many discussions.
On that dark night, at a shadow covered spot five kilometers away from the arena. A ghostly black figure landed inside the forest, materializing like black lightning. “Venerated Envoy Wei, the Nethersun Manor’s main army had already been mobilized. They will be crossing the borders in three days time.”
“Good.” An indifferent voice rang deeply from amidst darkness, “How goes the situation at the Great Scarlet Mid Region?”
“According to the report of our spies in the Great Scarlet Mid Region, the fourth rank sects in the Great Scarlet Mid Region have begun to mobilize. They will be arriving in three to five days time as well. All the fourth rank sects in the Great Scarlet Mid Region have mobilized this time, and made very targeted deployments. It would seem that they are planning to utterly destroy all the sects in Myriad Domain.” The intel brought back by this spy was incredibly detailed.