Qiu Mo, at the Yuanfu Realm, as well as being a member of the 10 prodigies of the Royal Capital, had long established his name.
Qin Wentian was a new blood of the Emperor Star Academy. Within this short span of a year’s time, he had become a 3rd level Divine Inscriptionist.
Qiu Mo was the senior, and thus had the qualifications to lecture Qin Wentian. However, his words, weren’t lecturing, but were deliberately targeting instead.
Qin Wentian naturally needed to rebut. There were many Yuanfu students within the academy, and in the beginning, Qiu Mo still acted humbly, but soon after, it was if he was the only Yuanfu cultivator within the whole Emperor Star Academy.
“Junior Brother Qin is right, Senior Qiu Mo merely started cultivating earlier than him. But what gives you the right to act as though you are the only Yuanfu cultivator in our academy? Even if we don’t mention the year when you first joined the academy, just speaking of your accomplishments last year, they are far from being able to rival Qin Wentian’s.”
The sound of Luo Huan’s voice rang out, as she smiled lightly. “If it was not for the fact that Senior Qiu started cultivation a few years earlier, you indeed would have no qualifications at all to be even mentioned in the same breath as Junior Brother Qin.”
“Arguments are meaningless. If you remain unconvinced, rather than talking to paint a beautiful picture, why not let us spar to exchange some pointers.” Jiang Xiu coldly continued, “After all, today is suppose to be a gathering where we test out our techniques against each other. A skillful mouth, doesn’t really have much persuasion.”
“You really know how to talk big, you want an Arterial Circulation cultivator to spar against a Yuanfu cultivator? Why don’t you try sparring against one yourself?” Mountain coldly snorted, rage coloring his voice.
“Exchanging pointers doesn’t mean that it needs to be based on combat. If Senior Qiu Mo really wanted to spar against Qin Wentian, naturally he wouldn’t be allowed to use his Yuanfu cultivation base.” Someone at the side spoke out. Qiu Mo was already back in his seat, and he involuntarily laughed, “Other than using one’s cultivation base to power one’s innate techniques, we could merely spar using the stances and moves of our attacks without being powered by our cultivation bases. Victory will be achieved based on one’s comprehension, ability to adapt, and reaction speed. Wouldn’t that be a beautiful solution?”
“That may be true, however after breaking through to Yuanfu, one’s attributes would increase and their senses become sharper as well. Adding into consideration the fact that he should have a deeper understanding of his own innate techniques because his cultivation level is higher, Qiu Mo naturally would gain an unfair advantage.” Luo Huan scornfully replied. “If that’s the case, it’s the same difference.”
“I have not stepped into Yuanfu yet. Why not let me take the place of Senior Qiu Mo to exchange some pointers with Qin Wentian?” Jiang Xiu abruptly spoke. “Qin Wentian is too arrogant, and in addition to the confidence Luo Huan has in him, why don’t I be the test to see where his true capabilities lie?”
“Luo Huan, if Qin Wentian continues to hesitate, I shall speak of this no more.” Jiang Xiu’s eyes were filled with a cold laughter, provocation could be clearly heard in his tone.
Luo Huan furrowed her brows as she looked to Qin Wentian.
After all, Qin Wentian had only been in the academy for a single year, and had also invested a large amount of time in the study of Divine Inscriptions. Naturally, his understanding towards innate techniques wouldn’t be as profound as others’. Just based on this point alone, Qin Wentian would suffer a disadvantage.
Since they were going to disregard the differences in cultivation base, merely competing with the moves and stances of their innate techniques. In such a battle, naturally the one who was versed in more types of innate techniques would win.
Qiu Mo didn’t continue speaking, as Jiang Xiu has taken over for him. He was naturally content to maintain his silence.
As the gazes of the crowd landed onto Qin Wentian, Qin Wentian’s countenance still remained unperturbed, no one could tell what he was thinking.
Qin Wentian was deep in contemplation at this moment. He was sure he had never offended Qiu Mo or Jiang Xiu before, but why did the two of them seemed to be so against him, overbearingly forceful and deliberately targeting him? Even now, they still wanted to witness him shaming himself to prove to others that the ‘so-called’ talent of Qin Wentian wasn’t able to withstand a single blow if he lost the battle.
Unable to guess at the reason, Qin Wentian decided not to ponder too deeply on it. The crowd only saw him slowly standing up and strolling towards the circular stone stage, as he calmly stated.
“Senior Brother, I await your guidance.”
Qin Wentian stood in the middle of the stage, looking straight at Jiang Xiu. Action always speaks louder than words.
Jiang Xiu glared at Qin Wentian. Standing up, his body erupted with force as he jumped through the air, landing in front of Qin Wentian.
“I won’t be polite then.” Jiang Xiu’s gaze were as sharp as unsheathed swords.
“This junior brother here doesn’t really have a profound understanding regarding innate techniques. What I’ve understood could only said to be the tip of the iceberg. I hope Senior won’t be too harsh on me when we exchange blows later.” The humble reaction by Qin Wentian caught the crowd off guard. This… didn’t seem like the Qin Wentian from moments earlier.
“Hehe, my weapon will be a sword. Choose your Divine Weapon.” Jiang Xiu drew a sword out from his back. Although it was a Divine Weapon, as long as one did not channel energy into it, it was no different from a normal weapon, albeit many times sharper.
Since the two of them agreed not to spar with their cultivation bases, in order to determine the victor, the next best solution was to use a weapon and fight with their weapon-specific style innate techniques. If not, if one were to use a palm-type innate technique, with no cultivation base to power that technique, how could they even blast forth the palm prints? And how could that still be called an innate technique.
“My choice of weapon would be the halberd.” Qin Wentian withdrew the ancient halberd from his interspatial ring with a thought. The ancient halberd wielded in his hands had its tip pointing at the ground, as the crescent blades on the halberd glowed with a cold light.
“Please.” Qin Wentian strengthened his grip on the halberd as he looked at his opponent.
The palms of Jiang Xiu wavered slightly as the sword in his hands emitted an icy light. He then stepped forwards towards Qin Wentian. And every step of his also contained a terrifying pressure. Although he wasn’t using his cultivation base, their fleshy bodies were all extremely powerful due to already passing through the realm of Body Refinement.
The sword in his hands flashed, and as it transformed into a shadow, a sword light filled with coldness pierced towards Qin Wentian.
“Shadow Snow Swordplay.” The elites on the stage were all extraordinary geniuses. Instantly, they were able to tell that this was a low-tier earth-grade innate technique that came from the 4th level of the Heavenly Star Pavilion.
The sword as cold as snow, the sword light like a shadow.
This sword of Jiang Xiu pierced like a bolt of lightning, aiming straight towards the throat of Qin Wentian.
Qin Wentian retreated two steps, as he pierced forwards with the ancient halberd, aiming for the tip of the sword, wanting to clash directly with Jiang Xiu.
“How could the wondrous Shadow Snow Swordplay be caught so easily.” The crowd were speculating in their hearts, and as they expected, the sword of Jiang Xiu abruptly changed direction. Like a snowflake that was drifting freely with the wind, it curved naturally, changing its target to the centre of Qin Wentian’s eyebrows, as the body of Jiang Xiu moved together with his sword, graceful beyond comparison.
“Despite not being allowed to use his cultivation base to power his innate techniques, Senior Jiang really exceeds everyone’s expectations. Only in this case would one be able to see the profoundness of Senior Jiang’s sword techniques.” The crowd below couldn’t help but to exclaim in wonder. What a mysterious swordplay. If one were to power it with astral energy, how powerful would it be then?
Qin Wentian continued to retreat, as the ancient halberd he wielded began a dance of its own, transforming into a spiral, as a manifestation of a Xuanwu Black Tortoise appeared. The sword was unable to pierce through its defense that quickly
“This is the mid-tier, earth-grade Berserker Beast Halberd Technique. It’s extremely tyrannical and possesses stringent requirements for users that choose to cultivate it. To think that Qin Wentian actually chose such a halberd technique.”
“Senior Jiang changed his swordplay again, now he is using the Starpoint Swordplay.” The spectators saw the swordplay of Jiang Xiu unhurriedly underwent a change, as the swordlight transformed into a brilliance akin to points of astral light, piercing through the spiral defense of the ancient halberd. It was as though as long as there was a gap in the halberd’s defense, his attack would be able to reach Qin Wentian.
“Vermillion Bird Stance of the Berserker Beast Halberd Technique.”
The ancient halberd that Qin Wentian wielded also changed its stance. As the Vermillion Bird Stance was utilised, the halberd became exceptionally sharp and incomparably agile, wanting to destroy the points of astral light attack for attack. In that short instance, ringing sounds incessantly rang out. It was unknown how many times they clashed within that moment.
“Such close combat is extremely dangerous. One wrong move could cause paralysis or even death to the loser.”
The spectators saw that the speed of their close combat battle was getting faster and faster. Even without being powered by his cultivation base, the sword of Jiang Xiu was extremely tyrannical. Qin Wentian also didn’t lose out that much. Although his moves were not as graceful and beautiful as the sword user, his defense was as tough as a stone, his attack as domineering as a dragon and a tiger. And as the two of them clashed against each other numerous times, the Divine Weapons in their hands shone with a luster, having the potential to kill with every strike.
Since they were not using their Yuan Energy, the victor would be determined by their understanding of the profoundness of their innate techniques.
From the circumstances, the sword of Jiang Xiu unleashed different attacks relentlessly, inching closer and closer. Most of the time, Qin Wentian adopted a defensive posture, and if this were to go on, Qin Wentian would undoubtedly be defeated.
However, Qin Wentian did not share the same thoughts as the spectators. Although for the majority of the time, he was in a defensive position, his stance was as steady as Mount Tai, there were no gaps in his defense. Even under the constant onslaught of the explosive, ever-changing swordplay of Jiang Xiu, Qin Wentian didn’t even suffer a single injury.
“Seems like Qin Wentian wasn’t undeserving of his reputation. Although at first glance, he appeared to be the weaker party, his understanding of innate techniques was not as profound as his opponent, but during every critical moment, he was able to avert disaster and counter with a miraculous counterattack.” The elites on the stage understood more compared to the rest of the crowd. There were two reasons why Qin Wentian could be so steady, making no mistakes even when dueling speed against speed.
Firstly, he was exceptionally familiar with his own techniques, able to execute them to the point of perfection.
Secondly, his senses were extremely sharp, able to clearly sense the path of his opponent’s every attack, not missing out on a single one.
“Sword Heart’s Lonely Shadow.”
The swordplay of Jiang Xiu transformed yet again. His whole person was indomitably pressing forwards, and his sword, akin to a lonely shadow, lacerated everything in its path, emanating a chill that gushed forward intently.
Qin Wentian unhesitatingly retreated, causing the crowd to sigh involuntarily. Qin Wentian, no matter what, was still going to be defeated. No one had anticipated that Jiang Xiu had mastered that strike, Sword Heart’s Lonely Shadow to such a level. The sword in his hands moved at the slightest intent of his will. His degree of accuracy and exquisiteness of that attack had already reached the peak, as Qin Wentian’s defense became increasingly flustered.
“You are doomed to be defeated.” In that instant, Jiang Xiu himself seemed akin to a sharp sword, piercing out gracefully.
“Azure Dragon Stance.” Qin Wentian roared in rage, as he stabbed out with the ancient halberd, exuding an aura of dominance. The simplest strike, but yet the strongest attack he could muster.
“Release!” The gaze of Jiang Xiu was as sharp as swords, and the sword in his hand moved according to his will, undergoing 9 transformations in an instant. The ancient halberd in Qin Wentian’s hands was flung out by the impact, and within that space of a single breath, the sword of Jiang Xiu inched closer and closer.
“Qin Wentian, has been defeated.” Upon witnessing this sight, the crowd silently stated in their hearts. The sword of Jiang Xiu could end that battle in an blink of an eye.
The swordplay of Jiang Xiu won because of its ingenuity. As for the halberd, without the infusion of Yuan power, it wasn’t able to unleash its full tyrannical might.
However, at this very instant, the crowd only saw Qin Wentian advancing instead of choosing to retreat. His palm blasted forward, coming into contact directly with the back of that sharp sword of Jiang Xiu, veering the sword away from him.
“Courting death.” Jiang Xiu coldly snorted, as the sword in his hand swung in a graceful, perfect arc, changing its trajectory and slicing horizontally at Qin Wentian. However, he witnessed the incredibly mysterious movement technique of Qin Wentian saving him. Maintaining the same rhythm as the sword swing, and moving in accordance to it, Qin Wentian avoided that attack. While simultaneously retreating, he extended his other hand, and actually managed to catch hold of the ancient halberd that was flung out of his grasp. All of this took time to describe, but the events happened within the space of a moment.
At this moment, the distance between Jiang Xiu and Qin Wentian was only a feet apart. Jiang Xiu blasted out with his left hand, and Qin Wentian mirrored his actions. At that moment of impact, both of their bodies were instantly forced apart a certain distance. However, during that split-second, the Vermillion Bird Stance of the Berserker Beast Halberd Technique swept out, incomparably swift. The crescent edged blades of that halberd landed on Jiang Xiu’s neck, while the sword of Jiang Xiu was still some distance away from Qin Wentian!