Plundering the Heavens - 172 Remarkable Talen
“I thought the boy got scared and ran away, yet now he wants to continue?”
“What just happened anyway? Does the boy have something to do with it?”
“Oh? Is this boy planning on committing suicide? I remember he had a mount as well, but he’s planning on facing the enemy alone?”
Some of the people chattering away were happy, while others were worried.
“Why does he have to duel Shixiong Xiao? Is he not scared…?” Qin Xing’er’s tears started to roll down her face as she watched from beneath the Thousand Cliff. Liu Heihu was beside her and tried to soothe her, “He must have his own plans; it’s not guaranteed he’ll lose!”
In a location even farther away, those who held grudges against Fang Xing—such as Feng Qingwei, Murong Ying, Meng Xuanzhao, and Ye Tianlong—couldn’t hide the looks of excitement on their faces as they occasionally glanced up towards the stage above.
“What a pity I can’t kill this boy with my own hands. At least watching Shixiong Xiao kill him will still help us vent.”
“What a pity. This boy is still not bad, but he’s seeking his own death; with this, he’s doomed to never reach his potential.”
Atop the spectators’ platform, Elder Qin’nyao was also calm and coldly said, “Hopefully Jianming won’t be as soft as Linyun!”
Xiao Shanhe knew she held a grudge against Fang Xing ever since the boy had cursed at her in public. “Shimei, please allow Jianming to vent your anger for you,” he laughed.
Whether friend or stranger to Fang Xing, whether elder or disciple, nobody had much confidence in Fang Xing’s victory. Ever since he’d returned to the sect, it became apparent his battle prowess was high—much greater than what it should have been at his current cultivation level—but his performance during the recent tournament matches had let everyone down. His wins were achieved through either throwing money at people or committing shameless acts; even though he managed to defeat both Hua Yuanye and Xu Linyun to get to the final round, others were still not convinced he was legitimately strong.
Those who had high esteem for him believed he had some sort of secret abilities he hadn’t showed yet. Those who looked down on him felt that for him to even come this far was all thanks to his luck and sneaky tactics… and who could forget the money? But no matter whether somebody had high esteem for him or looked down on him, nobody felt he had much of a chance against Xiao Jianming. Xiao Jianming had been in the Qing-Yun Sect for nearly ten years and had always been considered the peak existence among disciples. Even the similarly-talented Xu Linyun could not draw even a single ray of the spotlight, to say nothing of Fang Xing.
Xiao Jianming sat cross-legged atop the steel eagle while holding on to his iron sword. His eyes glistened as he declared with a deep voice, “Brat, I rarely hate someone as much as I hate you….”
Fang Xing coldly smiled. “That’s because you’re unable to do anything to me, right?”
Xiao Jianming was surprised, but he slowly nodded after a short moment. “Indeed, that is correct. Within the Qing-Yun Sect, no has shown such rudeness to me and continued to live as freely as you have. I really despise you, and not a moment goes by that I don’t want to kill you. Fortunately, the day I have been waiting for has finally arrived….”
A murderous aura began to wrap around Xiao Jianming as he spoke, but Fang Xing wasn’t afraid at all and tilted his head up towards Xiao Jianming with a smile. “I still have one more thing to say!”
A cold smile appeared at the edges of Xiao Jianming’s lips as he calmly replied, “Then speak up. This is perhaps your final chance to do so….”
Fang Xing smiled wider. “Xiao Jianming, your uncle is my b*tch1!”
A chilling look flashed across Xiao Jianming’s face along with his surprise. With a tzin sound, he drew half of his iron sword from its scabbard.
Fang Xing suddenly leapt backwards and placed both of his hands on his waist. “Come and kill me if you’re so good! Why don’t you come and kill me?” he yelled.
“Brat, even with your death so near you still keep running your mouth!” Xiao Jianming’s anger immediately flared. The iron sword was drawn completely from its scabbard and transformed into a black rainbow as it thrust towards Fang Xing. When it came to dealing with Fang Xing, Xiao Jianming often felt his patience was lacking.
“Qing-Yun Sword: Protective Frost….” Xiao Jianming’s voice was cold and solemn. The sword force was like a blizzard as the dark light shined and a thin layer of frost grew on the sword’s body. As the sword was thrust forward, the area within a thirty-foot radius was locked down by frost that slowed down the movement of everything around it, with only the sword itself allowed to move freely. The sword’s movements through the air seemed slow to the eye, but its actual speed was extremely fast; although it seemed as though the sword had only barely moved, in fact the blade was already only a few inches away from Fang Xing.
Fang Xing’s expression also became serious as all five of his fingers splayed out and the Saber of Azure Dragon appeared in his hand. He tilted the saber and its energy quickly began to grow, until its blue malice seemed to take on the form of a true dragon and coiled around Fang Xing’s body. Around the dragon were golden flames that were extremely hot, which immediately ended the freezing and slowing effect of the frost.
Metallic sounds rang nonstop and spread out as the saber and sword collided.
Xiao Jianming’s expression distorted, and his sword force coiled three full rotations before the enormous power from Fang Xing’s saber was finally countered. Fang Xing himself had to take a few steps backwards before he could stabilize his body once again, but he looked rather dignified.
“It seems I’ve underestimated you, brat. Although you’re only at Spirit Stage tier seven, a single strike was already so strong…” Xiao Jianming coldly said. The force from Fang Xing’s strike had left him astonished.
Fang Xing grinned. “How would I dare face you if it wasn’t?”
A look of disdain appeared on Xiao Jianming’s face. “I have studied the Qing-Yun Nine Swords for nearly ten years; do you really think this is all I have?” He let out a cold laugh and the iron sword went forward in another thrust. “Qing-Yun Sword: Light of Dawn….”
The sword force became like that of the rising sun, as though it were dissipating the darkness of the night with its bright light. In mere moments, it was as though the sun itself had appeared in Xiao Jianming’s hands, emerging from the darkness to radiate endless light. At this time, the iron sword within his hand transformed into tens of thousands of illusory shadows that all thrust towards Fang Xing.
Among these swords, there was of course only one that was real; however, even though the rest were illusions, they were still made up of rather powerful sword energy that could cause damage. If someone were to focus solely on finding that single true sword, they would still be heavily wounded after being covered by the sword energy. If someone were to focus solely on defending against the sword energy while allowing the real sword to come close, they would assuredly be struck by that sword and likely lose their life.
Xiao Jianming showed a cold smile and ordered the steel eagle beneath him to fly in closer to Fang Xing. “I’d like to see how you defend yourself from this strike, brat….”
Every technique of the Qing-Yun Nine Swords had a different level of power, but none of them were easy. Xiao Jianming had focused all of his studies hard on this discipline, and so he didn’t believe Fang Xing was capable of blocking this attack. Not everything was decided by cultivation levels; between two ordinary people, the one who learned a little bit of martial arts would be stronger than the person who did not. Likewise, the difference in battle prowess between those who had studied battle techniques and those who had not was like the difference between heaven and earth.
Fang Xing’s face dropped when he saw the strike and a million ideas sprang to his mind. He at last toughened his heart and—without taking a step backwards—threw himself towards the sword light while casually waving his giant saber without any rhyme or reason. It seemed extremely unlikely he would be able to counter this strike at all, but just as he threw himself in the middle of all the sword light, he suddenly yelled out, “Exploding Flame Talisman!”
Shocked, Xiao Jianming immediately drew back his sword and moved backwards. The eagle carried him and he was instantly a good forty feet away, his sword held protectively in front of his chest.
Xiao Jianming wasn’t stupid and had given considerable thought as to how Fang Xing could possibly fight back against him. After seeing Fang Xing throw out and use all sorts of talismans and tools to defeat Hua Yuanye, he knew the boy had plenty of items, and there was no doubt the Exploding Flame Talisman given to him by the Fuyao Palace was one of the most destructive of the lot. Not even he dared to test its power directly.
Xiao Jianming didn’t want to die together with Fang Xing, after all. No matter what, he would have to make sure he stayed alive.
After retreating, however, Xiao Jianming suddenly realized that Fang Xing’s hands were empty—there were no signs of a talisman at all. After frightening off Xiao Jianming, Fang Xing had immediately returned to his original location without a single thought about giving chase, and the boy instead held on to his stomach in laughter while pointing at Xiao Jianming and saying, “Hahaha, I lied. Look at you, scared like a little rabbit! How embarrassing….”
This enraged Xiao Jianming so much that smoke began to rise from his pores. “You’re asking for death!” He was now well and truly furious, and the strength of his sword force seemed to increase as well.
The grin on Fang Xing’s face vanished to be replaced with murderous intent, as though he was about to fight with all he had. “You really think I’m afraid of you?” Once Xiao Jianming had come in close once more, he suddenly moved his hand behind him and yelled out, “Exploding Flame Talisman!”
“It’s real this time!” Xiao Jianming muttered to himself as his heart skipped a beat. He pressed his legs against the steel eagle’s back, and the eagle once again made a turn to flee forty or so feet away.
“Haha, look at how timid you are! Your uncle was still lying! So scared and gutless….” Fang Xing loudly laughed and waved his empty hand at Xiao Jianming.
Xiao Jianming’s eyes turned red as he became truly furious. “Little bastard, I’m going to kill you!” With a loud howl, he brought his sword forward with a swoosh sound and swiftly pointed it towards Fang Xing. F*ck sparing his life, that can go to hell! Having this kid die was now more important than anything else!
When it came to forcing an opponent to lose their cool, it could be said Fang Xing was remarkably talented.
 Your uncle is my b*tch: To clarify, this isn’t specifically referencing Xiao Shanhe. It’s just a general provocation, like insulting someone’s mother.To clarify, this isn’t specifically referencing Xiao Shanhe. It’s just a general provocation, like insulting someone’s mother.