Suddenly, Zhuo Fan’s wailing was cut short. Everyone’s heart seized with a shiver. Qingcheng even began shedding tears thinking Zhuo Fan was gone.
But what was so astonishing was that Zhuo Fan’s energy signature was still there, with an azure flame in the center of his forehead.
Under its cover, Zhuo Fan started breathing eased up. The sound waves didn’t stop, but they weren’t as aggravating as before.
“That’s…” Xie Tianyang cried, “I remember now! In his battle with You Guiqi, this azure flame appeared as well, shielding his soul.”
Indeed, Zhuo Fan was muddled from the pain to his soul and forgot about the azure flame protecting his soul.
Now that his soul was at its limit, the azure flame came out by itself.
With it, Zhuo Fan relaxed. Under the gentle and warm glow of the flame, his soul began to recover.
Zhuo Fan felt how it grew and was on the verge to break through into the Radiant Stage.
Slowly closing his eyes, Zhuo Fan remained kneeling and ignored everything around him as he let the warmth bathe him. This was a rare chance for his soul to advance and he wasn’t about to miss it.
The proud Huangpu Qingyun now cried in panic at Vicious Pill King, “Elder Yan, what’s happening? He still seems to be alive!”
“Uh, he’s not dead yet!” Vicious Pill King was also confused.
“Then what is this? Why isn’t he wailing and seems to be enjoying it instead?” Huangpu Qingyun was baffled.
Vicious Pill King rolled his eyes and shook his head, [How should I know?]
“Elder Yan.” Huangpu Qingyun squinted, “You can’t be thinking of going easy on him because he’s an incredible alchemist, are you?”
Incensed, Vicious Pill King snapped his glare on him, “Second young master, please watch your tone! Haven’t Pill King Hall always assisted Regent Estate? When have we ever shown the opposite? Aren’t we getting the Bodhi Root for you as well?”
“Ha-ha-ha, that remains to be seen. Everyone knows Pill King Hall yearns for this incredible treasure. Who knows, maybe you’ll just take it and run at first chance!” Huangpu Qingyun snorted.
Vicious Pill King was so furious he couldn’t say a word and his heart sank.
Zhuo Fan’s words may have been to break their teamwork, but they were undoubtedly true. This Huangpu Qingyun was no leader material, he was too narrow-minded.
5th elder walked to Huangpu Qingyun, watching Zhuo Fan assaulted by the Rumbling Blood Bats and said, “Second young master, I think he had come up with a way to block the blood bats. If this continues, the situation will only worsen.”
“What do you think we should do?” Huangpu Qingyun was growing worried as well.
5th elder revealed a wicked grin, “I suggest we attack him together. The blood bats sealed that uncanny movement skill and we can kill him at close range. Also, second young master, didn’t you speak of killing him yourself to ease your hatred? He-he-he…”
“Yes, we’ll do as you say.” Huangpu Qingyun nodded, and said to Vicious Pill King in request, when in fact it sounded more like a demand, “I’ll be troubling Elder Yan to stop the blood bat’s attack and let us go fight him ourselves. But remember, don’t let that kid escape again.”
Snorting inside, despite his anger, Vicious Pill King complied. Who told the Regent Estate and Pill King Hall to sign an alliance agreement? For lack of a better alternative, he had to obey.
With a hand sign, the hundred Rumbling Blood Bats stopped but Zhuo Fan’s eyes were still very much closed as he kneeled on the ground. He looked just like a man on his last leg, with his reserves spent, he was unable to even stand up. With one exception, the azure flame still flickered on his forehead.
“What’s wrong with him?” Chu Qingcheng asked, anxious.
With the sound attacks gone, he should’ve jumped to his feet. But he was sitting there like a statue instead. He may be either comatose or too weak to even move.
Both of which were the worst possibilities in such a dangerous situation.
Chu Qingcheng pleaded Long Jiu with her eyes, “Uncle Jiu…”
His lone eye shook as he said gravely, “Wait a bit longer!”
“If he still has a scheme in play, we will not only fail to save him by going in now, but even ruin his plan.” Xie Tianyang blurted.
The rest nodded.
They were all clear from Zhuo Fan’s handling of Huangpu Qingyun so far. He always aimed for when his opponent was unguarded. He was unfathomable to always seem to manage to have Huangpu Qingyun trapped again and again without even realizing it.
Huangpu Qingyun was thinking the same thing.
Zhuo Fan looked calm, unmoving, but who knew if he was faking it instead? They wanted to avoid his sudden assault, which could send another one of them to an early grave.
Huangpu Qingyun recalled just how dangerous it was so far and he was soaked in a cold sweat. His steps were even more careful as they neared Zhuo Fan.
The alchemists and the clans’ delegates bolted before they could witness the intricate battle of before.
To their eyes, two Profound Heaven experts, from the seven houses, were shaking in their boots in the face of a defenseless Bone Tempering cultivator.
They were dumbstruck!
[Dude, what’s up with that? You are the ones after his life, you are the strongest one here, yet you won’t dare get close to an unconscious man? You’re disgracing the seven houses, you know?]
Huangpu Qingyun’s response, if he could hear them, would be, [I know! Damn it!]
Taking a deep breath, Huangpu Qingyun closed in on Zhuo Fan ever so slowly, yet the sweat on his brow grew denser as well. He wasn’t afraid of fighting Zhuo Fan.
It was Zhuo Fan’s tricky nature that left him harried.
At the end of it all, he was just scared of falling for Zhuo Fan’s trick again!
When they finally got to Zhuo Fan, Huangpu Qingyun and 5th elder tested with a punch.
The golden fist smacked into Zhuo Fan’s face and sent him flying. Then a boom resounded as he was buried in rubble.
Huangpu Qingyun was stumped, [Wasn’t that too easy?] Zhuo Fan didn’t even react and he was now overjoyed. [He must be still out of it from the bats’ sound attacks.]
“5th elder, we were right. His brain is the only thing that kept him alive so far.” Huangpu Qingyun laughed.
5th elder nodded and grinned as he invited, “If you would, second young master!”
The two puffed out their chest and strutted to the rubble.
The people were speechless. They were shaking in their boots before, but now they knew he was out like an extinguished candle, a lamb to the slaughter, they got their haughty attitudes back.
[W-what kind of people are these?]
The crowd looked at them with derision. They’d be raining mockeries if not for them being from the seven houses.
The two were too self-absorbed in their joy to notice, and were now going to pluck the fruit of victory.
Chu Qingcheng was panicking. Even if she acted now, it was far too late.
Long Jiu looked up at the circling bats, then around, and said through clenched teeth, “Jian Suifeng, Iris Overseer, Peony Overseer, come with me to deal with the bats. Kill as many as you can. Qingcheng, you go save the kid. I hope Huangpu Qingyun will go easy seeing a familiar face!”
Chu Qingcheng nodded with conviction.
But before they could start, another boom followed. Zhuo Fan jumped out of the rubble and the azure flame was also gone, but his eyes flashed with a bluish glow, as if flames still throbbed within.
“Who the hell hit me? Step up and I promise not to beat you to death!” He twisted his neck around to the two of them with an evil grin.
Startled, Huangpu Qingyun and 5th elder were incredulous, “You’re fine even after being hit by a hundred bats’ attacks?”
“Ha-ha-ha, the hundred bats’ cawing were nothing but annoying.” Zhuo Fan showed a cryptic smile.
The people were dumbstruck. A hundred Rumbling Blood Bats were enough to kill a 5th level spiritual beast but he was safe and sound?
[Zhuo Fan is a freak through and through.]
Vicious Pill King was also dazed from shock. Long Jiu’s group finally relaxed.
“He is always giving us scares and worries. He has a talent to keep turning a crisis into a blessing in disguise!” Long Jiu sighed, but Chu Qingcheng frowned at the bats in the sky, “The danger has yet to pass.”
“No, it’s all fine now.”
Xie Tianyang smiled, “Look how his eyes changed. I only saw that look once, when he killed You Guiqi. I will never forget that unnerving confidence.”
They all looked and realized Xie Tianyang was right. Zhuo Fan’s entire demeanor changed. He was like a honed sword, waiting to leave its sheath and upturn the world.
And deep in the dark abyss that were his eyes, frigid killing intent roiled.
Even Long Jiu, a Profound Heaven expert, shivered. Xie Tianyang laughed and stretched, “He is itching to slaughter someone!”
Huangpu Qingyun and 5th elder nearby the rubble were tense. But the hundred bats overhead worked to assure their safety, “Ha-ha-ha, Zhuo Fan, there’s nowhere for you to run. So stand still and await your death.”
Raising an eyebrow, Zhuo Fan flicked his eyes at the beasts above and smiled, “Yeah, there’s nowhere to run now. And since none of you want to see me running, I will do just what you want and stay put.”
“Stay… and kill!” Zhuo Fan spat through gnashed teeth, riveting his boundless killing intent on the two of them.
The two shivered and their hearts were struck by an odd sense of fear.
The two found it hard to accept it, [How can this be…]