Bai Yunfei had racked up a good amount of experience with the Beast Taming Ring due to experimenting with the blue-eyes wyrm. The wolf was a different soulbeast, but still a soulbeast in the end. The ring snapped over the thunderfire wolf’s neck and then tightened over it with a mysterious glow.
Earlier preparations had Bai Yunfei more than ready to protect himself with the Cataclysmic Seal while most of his concentration would be put towards to overwhelming the wolf’s mind. To make his defense even more stalwart, Xiao Qi would distract Xing Yuan while Bai Yunfei was working on the wolf.
Beast tamers placed the most of their fighting capabilities on these soulbeast puppets. Soulbeast puppets fought at their most efficient and without the fear of death, making it a very powerful tool for beast tamers to wield.
On the inverse, this also meant that if the soulbeast puppet was taken out from the equation, the beast tamer would lose a drastic amount of firepower.
So what Bai Yunfei planned was to have the Beast Taming Ring overwhelm the mind of the thunderfire wolf. As long as Bai Yunfei could shut down the communication between the thunderfire wolf and Xing Yuan, then Xing Yuan wouldn’t be able to use it. And when Xing Yuan is distracted, Xiao Qi would make its attack!
As expected from the Beast Taming Ring, Bai Yunfei could feel the energy from it activating start to happen.
Something completely unexpected from what he thought would happen was starting to take place.
It wasn’t as though it failed, but….
A half-surprised, half-hectic choke was heard then. It was coming from Xing Yuan, a troubled expression on his face.
The fireball he had been preparing to use to attack Bai Yunfei with had dissipated into the air, as if it had fallen apart. But the elemental fire still floating around him was being distorted as his soulforce fluctuated spasmodically!
Meanwhile, the thunderfire wolf was trembling from head to tail, but….it wasn’t doing anything else!
“Hold on….” This strange development caught Bai Yunfei off guard. As unexpected as it was, Bai Yunfei did notice something strange. Xing Yuan’s face was completely contorted in on itself, and the elemental fire he had been radiating before was now going back into his body while his soulforce was trembling violently before compressing back into Xing Yuan’s body!
And at the same time, Bai Yunfei felt another resurgence of a mental attack in his mindspace!
“I get it now!!”
The final piece of the puzzle clicked in his mind, it all made sense to Bai Yunfei now.
This contest between wills wasn’t between him and the thunderfire wolf, but with Xing Yuan!
A smile of the utmost joy appeared on Bai Yunfei’s face. As he concentrated at the task at hand, he cried out, “Xiao Qi!”
He hadn’t needed to cry out like that, as Xiao Qi was more than ready when called. As soon as the Beast Taming Ring had been slipped onto the thunderfire wolf’s neck, Xiao Qi had already lashed out with a blade of wind to attack Xing Yuan!
The pupils in Xing Yuan’s eyes dilated as the blade of wind approached. He held his right hand up, a barrier of elemental fire coating its palm, and allowed the blade of wind to smash into it.
Despite being relatively unharmed, Xing Yuan was knocked backwards several steps.
The true damage wasn’t to his physical body, but towards his concentration. While Xing Yuan had to deal with that, Bai Yunfei managed to take the upper hand over him in the battle of wills!
The battle of wills was taking place not in Bai Yunfei’s mindspace, but the thunderfire wolf’s. Not even a single iota of resistance could be seen or felt from the wolf, and it seemed as though its mind was completely devoid of anything.
In this place, Xing Yuan was the master attacking Bai Yunfei, the gate crasher.
Furthermore, the main goal in this battle wasn’t a battle of ‘subjugation’ like it was with the blue-eyes wyrm.
It was a battle of expulsion!
The mindspace of the thunderfire wolf was a battleground to Bai Yunfei and Xing Yuan. It belonged to neither person, but as long as one of the two sides remained, they’d hold control over it!
Right now, Xing Yuan was absolutely overwhelmed with shock. Someone wrestling control of his soulbeast away from him was something he had never even heard of, let alone see before! The Beast Taming School made use of a method that imprinted a slave seal on the very depths of a soulbeast’s soul. The seal allowed for the consciousness of the soulbeast to be erased while leaving behind its primal instincts for a soul cultivator to control with his own power, but controlling that power was already a very difficult task.
It took Xing Yuan an entire year for in order for him to force the thunderfire wolf into submission.
Once a soulbeast puppet was fully created, the seal on its mindspace was complete. Like a lock, the mindspace was safe from external attacks, and even a Soul King would be unable to force himself into it, since that’d lead to the soulbeast’s death if anyone tried!
Never had Xing Yuan ever heard before of a soul cultivator trying to wrestle away control of a soulbeast puppet from its beast tamer!
Coming in to strike Xing Yuan, Xiao Qi came descending down onto him like a bolt of violet lightning from the skies, forcing the man to break concentration and dive to the side again.
Without his equipment, Bai Yunfei was only a mid-stage Soul Exalt, but with them, he was comparable to the levels of a late-stage Soul Exalt. Compared to someone who stood at the very apex of the late-stage Soul Exalt level like Xing Yuan, Bai Yunfei’s mental strength would be weaker. It was only due to Xiao Qi’s interference and Bai Yunfei’s surprise attack that he was able to get the upper hand, but in the end, it was enough to push Xing Yuan back in the battle of will!
“What’s going on here! What in the world is going on?!” Xing Yuan mentally screamed to himself. He couldn’t believe what was going on, and neither could he understand it. But all he knew was that the Bai Yunfei fighting him today was completely different to the one from the first battle!
He had already moved back several kilometers so that he could dodge Xiao Qi’s movements, but each time he tried to widen the distance, Xiao Qi would chase after him and unleash hundreds arcs of lightning!
“Bang! Bang! Bang! Bang….”
Each arc of lightning struck uselessly off the coating of elemental energy around Xing Yuan’s body. Though they didn’t seem to do much against it, each lightning bolt was slightly stronger than the last, making the elemental fire around him flicker as if threatening to collapse.
At last, the barrier could hold out no more. It shivered for a bit before finally collapsing in on itself and leaving Xing Yuan defenseless.
And before he could put up another barrier, a dozen more bolts of lightning struck him
“Hmph!” A droplet of blood escaped from Xing Yuan’s mouth. As a late-stage Soul Exalt, he could handle at least this much physical pain. Since he had elemental fire coursing through his body, the elemental lightning from the bolts wouldn’t hinder his body much in any lasting way.
“Urk!?” A gurgle of confusion also escaped from his mouth then. In that moment of contact with the lightning bolts, he felt a strange sliver of energy escape from the bolts of lightning into his body, moving past his soulforce and elemental fire to target his inner body. From his skin to his very soul at his center, the strange energy seemed to penetrate straight through it, and then….
He had been in the middle of retreating when the lightning bolts struck. And when that strange energy from the attack pierced into his body, Xing Yuan came to a sudden stop. Disobeying Xing Yuan’s commands, his own hand came up with a ball of fire in it. Tossing it away, they then began to move strangely along with his feet, much to Xing Yuan’s confusion and horror.
He was struck with confusion!
And this was precisely the moment Xiao Qi was waiting for!
Extending its wings out wide, three separate blades made from a void in space formed in front of it. As soon as they reached their full size, each of the three then shot silently towards the direction of Xing Yuan!
Like Bai Yunfei, Xiao Qi had a few understandings of its own when it came to its own strength.
Use swarming tactics to have the enemy afflicted with a confusion status, and then use the Spatial Edge to follow up.
This battle plan was its most effective and most useful tactic with very little room for error.
And this time was no exception.
One of the Spatial Edges came into contact with the waist of Xing Yuan with a sound barely audible to the listening ear.
It continued into the forest below where it then disappeared from sight.
And as for Xing Yuan, his entire person came to a sudden and immediate stop….
He had been bisected!!