The middle stadium that was in the largest area of the Inner Academy was usually not open to the public. It would only be open when the Inner Academy organized a competition. As the hottest ‘Strong Ranking’ Grand Competition, this would naturally be the place where the competition would be conducted.
Of course, the area where the stadium in the middle was located was extremely large. However, it was still filled by the countless numbers of black masses of human heads. At a glance, the bustling crowd carried a noisiness that spread all around. Finally, they converged together and rushed to the stands.
Of course, the large group Xiao Yan was with was somewhat stunned when they arrived and eyed the human wall that was squeezed very tightly. However, it was fortunate that the competitors had a special tunnel. Borrowing Xiao Yan’s glory, Xun Er and the others avoided the trouble of having to be squeezed. They used the special tunnel that was guarded by the instructors and entered a high platform with quite a good view.
Xiao Yan stood on a high platform as his gaze swept below. They could see that the spacious arena was evenly divided into five platforms. Clearly, this should be the competition ground this time around.
Xiao Yan leaned on a guardrail. He looked down on the entire open ground from high above. Hearing the waves of noises that sounded from the ordinary viewing gallery below, the deep regions of his eyes became fiery hot. This competition basically represented the fight between the most outstanding students within the Inner Academy. The geniuses that had been gathered from all over the continent were extremely haughty people, who wanted to stand out in this Grand Competition. If one did not have some foundation, it was likely that one would only become other people’s stepping stone.
“Ke ke, Xiao Yan ge-ge, this Grand Competition is of a much higher standard compared to the Outer Academy Qualifying Competition back then.” Xun Er stood by the side with her hand holding the guardrail. Her lovely body was wrapped in green clothes and revealed her nice curves. She turned her head toward Xiao Yan and smiled as she spoke to him.
Xiao Yan nodded. He stretched his waist lazily and randomly said, “This Inner Academy is originally the place where geniuses gather. There are naturally no ordinary people able to enter the top fifty in this pile of geniuses. Even I have to go all out in this Grand Competition. Otherwise, it will really be somewhat impossible to enter the top ten.”
“Xiao Yan ge-ge can definitely do it.” Xun Er gave a shallow smile. That elegant and beautiful face, however, was filled with an even richer confidence than even Xiao Yan himself felt.
“It is still not certain whether I can or cannot. However, even if a lion wants to fight a rabbit, it must use all its strength. Now that I am faced with a group of opponents that are around the same strength as me, I will naturally have to display all my tactics.” Xiao Yan smiled and glanced at Xun Er as he continued, “However, if you wanted to, it would not be too difficult for you to enter the ‘Strong Ranking’. If you display all your tactics, I’m afraid that you would be able to contend with Liu Qing and the others.”
Xun Er smiled without speaking. She had seldom revealed her true strength. However, if one were to look down on her because of this, it was likely that one would pay a hefty price. The mysteriousness of this girl and the degree of her hidden trump cards were something that even Xiao Yan could not compare with.
“She has the strength, but refuses to participate. It is really a waste of opportunity.” Wu Hao smacked his mouth as he spoke with a somewhat painful heart. Giving up this opportunity to fight with these experts was definitely a hideous unforgivable crime in his eyes.
“I heard that you have also leaped into the ‘Strong Ranking’ two days ago?” Xiao Yan glanced at Wu Hao. This fellow’s strength may stop at the peak of the Da Dou Shi class. However, if he were to completely unleash his strength, Xiao Yan understood that it would not be possible for Wu Hao to be easily defeated even if the opponent was an ordinary one or two star Dou Ling.
“He he, 41st. It is a full ten places below you. Hopefully, we will not meet right at the start of the Grand Competition.” Wu Hao laughed and spoke. He revealed some pride on his face. He had entered the ‘Strong Ranking’ after having only entered the Inner Academy half a year ago. Although this rank was not considered high on the ‘Strong Ranking’, such an achievement could already be considered very outstanding. Of course, there was still some gap when he was compared with Xiao Yan. However, Wu Hao himself was already extremely satisfied. After all, he was the only one who knew just how much effort and perspiration he had put in to obtain this rank.
Xiao Yan nodded slightly. His heart was also a little surprised. This fellow’s talent was indeed extraordinary. If he didn’t have the ‘Skyfire Three Mysterious Change’ and the help of various medicinal pills, it was likely that the achievements he would have currently achieved would not be much higher than Wu Hao.
Xiao Yan continued to converse with Wu Hao for awhile. He did not continue being entangled on this topic. Turning his head around, his gaze swept all around him, only to discover that there were already quite a number of people had appeared on this high platform. The students who were able to enter this place were mostly the competitors of the Grand Competition. The others like Xun Er and the rest were incidentally brought up to this place by the competitors.
Xiao Yan’s turning gaze suddenly paused on an icy lady who had bright silver hair and a dress that matched it. He was slightly startled. His gaze moved a little and discovered Lin Xiuya, Yan Hao, and the others by Han Yue’s side. It appeared that they were inseparable ever since the few of them had looked for the ‘Core Quenching Body Milk’ in the deep mountains back then.
The gazes of Lin Xiuya and the others were returned when Xiao Yan discovered them. The few gazes looked at one another and smiled.
“Ke ke, Xiao Yan, I hope that we will not collide together at the start of the Grand Competition. It would really be a little embarrassing if that were to be the case.” With Lin Xiuya’s aura, his existence was basically that of a main character no matter where he was. Therefore, numerous gazes that contained various emotions shot over from the surroundings of the high platform turned toward Xiao Yan upon hearing the laughter.
“Senior Lin is the second on the strong ranking. Other than Zi Yan, the number of people who can contend with you can be counted on one hand. If we were to meet at the start of the competition, it can only be said that Xiao Yan is unlucky.” Xiao Yan laughed softly and replied.
“That may not be the case. I am also extremely fearful of that speed of yours.” Lin Xiuya appeared to give a faint unsmiling smile as he spoke. Having witnessed the frightening speed that Xiao Yan had displayed when he rescued Han Yue back then, he would naturally not underestimate this junior who kept a low profile and appeared to be harmless to both humans and animals.
Lin Xiuya did not lower his voice. Hence, some of the competitors around them were startled upon hearing it. Lin Xiuya had actually spoken in this manner despite his strength. Was the speed of this Xiao Yan really that frightening?
Xiao Yan ignored these surprised gazes around him. He smiled at Lin Xiuya and immediately ceased pausing on this topic.
“That’s right, we have made another trip to the deep mountains these few days.” Lin Xiuya suddenly opened his mouth and spoke after conversing with Xiao Yan for awhile.
Xiao Yan’s heart leaped without leaving a trace. His expression did not change as he smiled and asked, “Oh? Is that so? How is it? Did you get what you wish for?”
“What else can happen? That beast is currently becoming increasingly abnormal. It was still alright the last time. When we met this time, it had unknowingly become crazy. It awoke its wild violent bloodline the moment we met. If it were not for the fact that we fled quickly, I’m afraid that we would not even be able to participate in this Grand Competition.” Yan Hao by the side rolled his eyes and cursed with great dissatisfaction.
Xiao Yan heart quietly sighed in relief. On the surface, however, he comforted, “Just forget about it if you cannot obtain it. In any case, as long as you enter the top ten of the ‘Strong Ranking’, you will be able to enter the lowest level of the ‘Blazing Sky Qi Refining Tower’ and receive that so called Essence Heart Flame to refine your body. At that time, I think that you will all be able to borrow its strength to step into the Dou Wang class.”
Ugh, hopefully. The refinement of one’s body by the ‘Heart Flame’ may be called a safe passage into the Dou Wang class. However, it does have quite the failure rate. It is good if it succeeds. If it ends up in failure… although my current distance to the Dou Wang level is merely just a step, this single step may be something that cannot be broken through even in five or ten years if there is no opportunity.” Lin Xiuya helplessly shook his head as he spoke.
The Dou Wang class. The true class of the strong on the continent. Dou Ling could basically be found all over the continent. Only after truly advancing to a Dou Wang would one be able to separate themselves from the masses and enter the line-up of the strong on the continent.
Xiao Yan was extremely clear about this point. He similarly understood the gap between a Dou Ling and a Dou Wang. Therefore, he was unable to find any comforting words when he saw the anxiety of Lin Xiuya and the others. After all, there were quite a number of people on the continent who had been stopped for five to ten years without progressing…
“Ke ke, I am really a pessimistic person.” Lin Xiuya laughed softly when he saw the atmosphere which had become gloomy. His slightly knit brows also became relaxed as he patted Xiao Yan’s shoulders and said, “I heard that you have come into conflict with Liu Qing’s group in the tower again? Hee hee. In that case, you should be a little careful. Liu Qing’s group has quite a number of names on the strong ranking. You should be a little cautious if you were to meet them in the competition. Although there is the rule that one is not allowed to take another person’s life in this Grand Competition, the knives and swords don’t have eyes…”
Xiao Yan smiled and was just about to nod when he suddenly sensed that the high platform had become much quieter than before. Immediately, he turned his head around after sensing something. His eyes instantly became slightly narrowed when his gaze swept across a large group of people entering from the entrance.
The group of people walked onto the tall platform. The people along the way began to move aside in an extremely tactful manner. The leader of the group was a simply dressed man. He had a strong build. His thick eyebrows were raised like swords and his masculine face which appeared naturally mighty carried a sharp aura.
This aura was basically something that almost no one in the Inner Academy did not recognize. Who else would it be but that Tyrant Spear Liu Qing?
Behind Liu Qing was Liu Fei, who had some conflict with Xiao Yan, and Yao Sheng. At this moment, the two of them had clearly noticed Xiao Yan and the others. Their resentful, dark, cold gazes were immediately thrown over at the same time.
Xiao Yan merely raised his brows slightly in the face of the gazes of these two people. He exchanged glances with Lin Xiuya, Yan Hao, and the others by the side and smiled slightly.
As Liu Qing walked straight toward Xiao Yan and Lin Xiuya, the voices on the tall platform gradually became much quieter. Numerous gazes were thrown toward both parties. These two groups appeared to represent the strongest two factions within the Inner Academy. Normally, they would avoid each other due to various reasons. Today, however, they actually collided face to face due to the imminent Grand Competition. It must be said… enemies often cross each other’s paths.