Book 12: The Strength of the Preparatory Team
Chapter 97.3: The Conjecture Regarding Multiple Fusion Skills
The seven people from Longpeace Academy who had just released their martial souls immediately felt that something was amiss, because they could feel a rapid fall in temperature. Then they saw the icy-blue halo of light opposite them starting to expand.
"That crazy woman is using her ten thousand year soul skill straightaway. Everyone, be careful," their team leader cursed in a low voice. He immediately released his soul skill as he prepared to resist carefully. From his perspective, a soul skill with such a large areof-effect could not be too powerful. If they could withstand it, they would counter-attack. After all, there was strength in numbers.
However, he soon saw something that made his gaze pause. In his field of vision, the judge of the competition, who was swiftly moving away from the center of the arena, suddenly stumbled.
Then, this unlucky judge turned into an ice statue. He was frozen in a retreating position.
What was going on?
Before the people from Longpeace Academy could react, they all felt an immense, frigid chill at the same time. It appeared to be coming straight for them. Then, their vision started to blur. While they were still conscious, their martial souls, soul power, and even their soul skills were frozen in the ice and snow.
In an instant, there were eight sculptures in the arena.
Ling Luochen retracted her staff and turned to Huo Yuhao and said, "Go, kick them all down. Remember, use only your legs and not your hands. These foul-mouthed scoundrels don't warrant such respect."
Huo Yuhao's heart missed a beat. He thought, "The seniors from the inner courtyard are so strong!"
The strategy that Ling Luochen had just used was very simple. With the help of Huo Yuhao, her ice-elemental attack had turned into Ultimate Ice, and then she had used her fifth soul skill, the Icebrilliant Halo.
While it was Ultimate Ice, with her powerful control of magic and elemental mastery, she was able to freeze her opponents for a while. Coupled with Huo Yuhao's Ultimate Ice, even if her opponent were a Soul King, he would be unable to escape for at least ten minutes.
This was the terrifying aspect of an Ultimate martial soul. If aided by the same element, the power of Ultimate Ice would become abnormally terrifying.
The audience and representatives from the various schools were all dumbfounded.
The moment Huo Yuhao walked past the unfortunate judge, the ice cracked, and the judge was able to break free from it. However, his entire body shivered for a while because of the cold. He seemed to have something to say, but in the end, he swallowed his words, which were likely a warning against beating the judges.
If a Soul Sage could be frozen for a period of time, what was there to say about a Soul King?
Subsequently, the 'battle' chiefly became a scene where all Huo Yuhao did was kick the seven ice sculptures that enclosed the members of Longpeace Academy's team. The teacher in charge of the academy was deathly afraid that his team would be injured from the impacts, and rushed down to catch his students as Huo Yuhao kicked them out of the arena. Fortunately, Huo Yuhao was generous enough to give that teacher enough time to catch each of his students.
The judge had recovered from his shivers too. In shock, he stared at Ling Luochen, who had already withdrawn her martial soul, and proclaimed, "Winner, Shrek Academy."
The entire audience was stunned.
Just as everyone thought that Shrek Academy was out of the fight, Ling Luochen used her powerful ice-manipulation skills to tell them that Shrek Academy was still number one in the continent! They were the invincible Shrek Academy!
The faces of the students from the Sun Moon Imperial Soul Engineering Academy appeared to have frozen over. They seemed to have lost their ability to think.
In the earlier rounds of the competition, no matter how excitingly Shrek Academy battled, no matter how strong their will, they would show them respect at most, and never caution. After all, a preparatory team was ultimately a preparatory team. If they had so much difficulty resisting the onslaught from Justsky Academy, what more could be said about them? Even Ma Rulong, their captain, believed that victory would ultimately be theirs.
However, just as their hearts were filled with hope, Ling Luochen appeared today. She was able to control all her opponents in the blink of an eye. This was not enough to shock everyone from the Sun Moon Imperial Soul Engineering Academy. After all, they had been careless when dealing with her. What shocked them was that the judge, a Soul Sage, was frozen by her too. Even though the judge was only frozen for five seconds, and he had not released his martial soul, it was a testament to Ling Luochen's powerful ten thousand year soul skill.
Who dared to say that they would not be immobilized by her powerful soul skill? In a battle, even if one was immobilized for a single second, the consequences on the outcome of the battle would be dire! Shrek Academy only deployed a single Soul King, but was able to stun everyone with her prowess. This was testament to the awe of Shrek Academy.
When Ling Luochen and Huo Yuhao left the arena, the others from Shrek stared at each other. They knew the power of this icy-cold soul master, who was also a member of the official team.
Ling Luochen was able to maximize her own elemental powers with the help of Huo Yuhao's Ultimate Ice. However, the power of her ten thousand year soul skill was equally terrifying too! Skills with an areof-effect coverage were the hardest to control. Yet, they were able to see that when the Icebrilliant Halo appeared, it did not spread out in all four directions, but instead went straight for her opponents. This was enough to illustrate her mastery over ice, which she could control as well as any other part of her body.
Wang Yan exhaled, and his body evidently relaxed. With the return of Ling Luochen, Shrek Academy regained its status as a powerful team. As the teacher in charge of this team, the pressure on him had been greatly reduced. Ma Xiaotao and Dai Yueheng would soon return too. The upcoming rounds would be easier for them.
Ever since he had brought the team here, he had been under a huge amount of pressure. The responsibility on his shoulders was heavier than that on the shoulders of his students. At this point, he could truly take a breather.
Like before, the team from Shrek Academy did not linger long. After the competition, they quickly returned to their hotel to rest. Everyone who stayed behind were from the other academies, who were discussing Ling Luochen's elemental control with great interest. The hot topic of the day was how to counter her.
The round robin portion of the competition entered its fourth round, which was also its mid-phase. Shrek Academy was in the first group, which was comprised of eight other teams. Every team had to take part in seven rounds of competition to complete a cycle.
In the next three rounds, Shrek Academy did not meet any opponent who posed a serious threat to them. They were on a winning streak. After two rounds consisting of a one-on-one deathmatch and a group battle, they were able to defeat their opponents. Finally, they were able to emerge victorious in their group with zero losses, drawing closer to the cruel elimination round.
Unexpectedly, the other team that was able to progress to the next round from their group was Justsky Academy, who had caused so much trouble for them before.
As the other groups had nine teams each, they were able to obtain three full days of rest after this round-robin cycle ended.
Ma Xiaotao and Dai Yueheng had by now fully recovered from their injuries. However, they did not participate in the round robin portion of the competition. They did not even go down to the arena. This was part of Wang Yan's strategy. Concealing their true power would be immensely beneficial to the subsequent rounds of the competition.
In these few days, Shrek Academy received a lot of good news. Xiao Xiao had more or less recovered completely, and after that difficult battle, she was able to break through her Rank 30 bottleneck. All she needed was a third soul ring.
After experiencing many arduous battles and relentless sessions of cultivation, Huo Yuhao and Wang Dong both experienced an increase of a single rank in soul power. Wang Dong’s soul power was now at Rank 32, while Huo Yuhao’s was at Rank 28, bringing him a step closer to Rank 30.
What was even more delightful was their experimentation with the martial soul fusion skill. However, they did not know what their rate of success was. Only Wang Yan knew that. At least, they had experimented with the other three combinations, and they had been able to achieve breakthroughs as they tried out these three combinations.
Xu Sanshi remained in bed for five days before Bei Bei finally kicked him out of it. He was shameless indeed. To receive Jiang Nannan's care, he had remained persistently in bed as he moaned about his predicament non-stop. He thought that this would improve Jiang Nannan's attitude toward him, but everyone knew that it was a one-sided affair. Jiang Nannan still treated him coldly.
As everyone recovered from their injuries, Shrek Academy returned to peak condition. Their power might not yet be comparable to the original official team, but it was not too far off.
After all, the two Soul Emperors and main control-type soul master of the original official team were still present. Coupled with Bei Bei, whose martial soul could evolve into the Golden Holy Dragon, and Xu Sanshi, whose martial soul could evolve into a Xuanwu, a powerful Soul Ancestor, and the exceptional powers of the rest, their overall strength was still terrifying.
"The pairing for the elimination round is out," Wang Yan said in a deep voice. He had just returned from the Star Luo Empire's palace, where he had drawn lots. Afterwards, he gathered everyone for a briefing.
"For the Round of 16, our opponent is a familiar one. They are the premier academy from the Dou Ling Empire, the Dou Ling Imperial Soul Academy."
When they heard the name 'Dou Ling Imperial Soul Academy', a look crossed the faces of Ma Xiaotao, Ling Luochen and Dai Yueheng.
Ma Xiaotao arched her brows and asked, "Why did we meet them so early on?"
Xiao Xiao asked curiously, "How powerful is the Dou Ling Imperial Soul Academy?"
Ma Xiaotao said, "They were in the top four in the previous tournament, that's how powerful they are. They are much stronger than the Justsky Academy who you met earlier on. Teacher Wang, how powerful are the members of their delegation this time?"
Wang Yan said, "The Dou Ling Imperial Soul Academy's official team is comprised of five Soul Kings and two Soul Ancestors. They are powerful indeed. Furthermore, they are not inflexible in their approach. While they are an advanced soul academy, they are also the premier soul engineering academy. Through my observations, I have realized that every single one of their delegation possesses a soul tool, and they are able to wield them efficiently in battle. At least two of them are soul engineers, which means that they are Soul Kings with soul tools. This is a difficult opponent."