“Sister Qingcheng, are you alright?”
Xiao Dandan rushed a helping hand to Chu Qingcheng. Xie Tianyang and Long Xingyun were helped by Xie Tianshang and Long Jie with Long Kui.
All of them watched the triumphant king strut away with bitterness. Even the thousands of vassal disciples lowered their heads in despair.
Drifting Flowers Edifices, Sword Marquise Abode and Veiled Dragon Pavilion’s morale was thoroughly shattered by Huangpu Qingtian. What could possibly instill a sense of courage in them now, to face the one who looked down upon them with such scorn?
Yan Bangui and You Yushan, along with the nice doggies left behind, were full of crass and haughty looks. It seemed that following a master had its perks, a perk of showing off.
By no means did they want to let this slide, but what could they do besides take the humiliation with lowered heads, trying to at least avoid the cocky faces of their oppressors.
Chu Qingcheng bit her lip until she drew blood. The sigh she gave felt like it sapped all her strength, “We need to find the key to the array now. Let’s go!”
The others turned to her with a sigh and a shake of their heads.
What was originally a search for the array key, to become first and crowned champion in Dragon Cloud City, had now become an excuse for running away.
The winner wasn’t the first to return, but the one who snatched all Brimming Sacred Pills.
Like Huangpu Qingtian said, only the strong could hold on to all of the riches. And they didn’t fit the bill!
At her words, Huangpu Qingtian’s step faltered for a second, but now he sported an even wider smirk of disdain.
His lackeys were even more obvious in their mockery, laughing it up. Beyond the National Elemental Stone, Regent Estate’s top figures were sporting the same disdain, to the sinking and wretched feelings their opposing faction was wallowing in.
This battle had seemed to predict the winner. There was no point in fighting any longer. The gap in power was too huge to be even bridged…
At the sudden sound, Huangpu Qingtian snapped his eyes on the source with a frown, “Who’s there?”
A panicked and bedraggled figure hopped out. He found Huangpu Qingtian and burst in tears of joy, “Eldest young master, I finally found you! Save me!”
“Oh, it’s you.”
Huangpu Qingtian squinted, “Lin Xuanfeng you look like you’ve seen a ghost.”
How the mighty had fallen. Lin Xuanfeng, of Six Dragons and One Phoenix, used to be a man of culture, of dignity. Now look at him, he was nothing but a bum scared of his own shadow. Although not undeserving, since he was also sporting a missing hand!
Not just Huangpu Qingtian’s team, but Chu Qingcheng’s side as well jerked. The one legged man may be half-crippled but he still had some fight left in him. He would never look so jittery even if he met some serious danger.
Look at him now. He was like a rabbit scared of his own shadow. What could have driven such fear into a man such as him?
[And you call yourself Forest Fleeting Dragon?]
Uncaring and ignorant of the looks he got, Lin Xuanfeng dashed behind Huangpu Qingtian, shivering and pointing at the trees, “Eldest young master, save me! That freak is coming!”
“Who’s coming? You mean…” Then it hit Huangpu Qingtian and his mood turned heavy. Yet all he could sense were some spiritual beasts.
Backslapping him into the air, Huangpu Qingtian cursed, “What are you raving about? He’s not coming!”
“He isn’t? But I clearly heard him ten days ago how he wants to wring my neck!” Lin Xuanfeng didn’t even register his red cheek, looking back from where he came with a bemused look and breathed easily.
The gratified look, the sheer joy he was expressing of having faced death and escaped, only earned him looks of pity.
[Just how terrified he must’ve been to show such an expression of joy?]
Beyond the National Elemental Stone, sympathizers of Chu Qingcheng’s faction found Lin Xuanfeng to be in an even worse state.
Merry Woods’ House Lord Lin was between red and blue. The anger he felt from being shamed by this brat was barely contained.
[You friggin’… I didn’t send you to Esoteric Debate to flounce around and shame me, but to make me look good!]
Oh, the cruel, cruel irony. He was mocking Drifting Flowers Edifices and the others getting stung by Huangpu Qingtian, but now it was his turn to face the music. He saw how his disciple disgraced him so and swished his head back in shame.
Chu Qingcheng’s team’s eyes held a glimmer of hope.
Huangpu Qingtian glared at Lin Xuanfeng with a cold face, “You’re saying you saw him ten days ago? But how did you get out alive? He could’ve easily killed you if he wanted to.”
“Um, I, uh, never actually saw him.” Lin Xuanfeng jumped in fright, then lowered his head, confused, “But I clearly heard him wanting to wring my neck.”
“What? You’re telling me his voice alone scared you into running around for ten days? Useless!”
Even hearing it himself got Huangpu Qingtian to blow his top, itching to cuff the man, again. Lin Rufeng gnashed his teeth, [God, how mortifying!]
[You’re a damn Dragon for god’s sake! How in the hell did you get so scared into running for so long? And you didn’t even see his shadow!]
The rest mocked him on the inside and showed their disdain, even the audience beyond the National Elemental Stone. Some of the jokes were targeted at Lin Rufeng, who wanted nothing more than to bury his head from shame.
[Even the broads from Drifting Flowers Edifices know to fight back against an impossible enemy, yet you jumped the gun, scared from just his voice!]
Lin Xuanfeng could practically feel the ridiculous looks boring holes in his back and snapped at his snickering allies next to him, “What are you laughing at? You’d have run with your tail between your legs just the same if it were you instead.”
“Ha-ha-ha, yeah, that brat sure is a calamity. We admit we’d never face him alone, but even so, none of us would be so quick to lose their heads just from his voice. At the very least, we’d wait to see him, you know? Ha-ha-ha…” Yan Bangui and You Yushan laughed it up.
This only worked to launch the ones behind those two houses into a full blown laughter. Though they did have the modesty to shut up quite fast, in fear of what Merry Woods might do.
One couldn’t tell what was worse. Stifling their obvious laughter, evident from their red faces, or letting it out.
Lin Xuanfeng went purple now and barked, “You know nothing! Of how deadly that situation was! The guy didn’t show himself but he took my hand from a thousand miles. You’d have run too if you met with such a creepy situation!”
Lin Xuanfeng was still hopping about, his face a mask of anger.
The laughter stopped and all eyes drew on the smooth stump of his arm. The dread creeped up their spines and robbed them of any jovial mood they ever had.
[This can’t be…]
Huangpu Qingtian squinted and pulled the arm closer, “You’re saying you never saw the guy, yet he took your hand?”
“I didn’t even realize what happened and the next thing I knew my hand was gone. And when he was threatening me, even the mountains quaked, as if a Mountain God awoke. I was scared out of my wits! What else was I supposed to do but flee?” Lin Xuanfeng wiped his brow from the foreboding feeling.
The rest were tongue-tied.
[Someone can actually do that? Take Lin Xuanfeng’s hand, without his knowledge, from a thousand miles away?]
Everyone, even the audience back in Dragon Cloud City was horrified. Such creepy ability was beyond the grasp of even a Radiant Stage expert!
Huangpu Qingtian squinted and shouted at Chu Qingcheng, “Tell that brat that we will be ten miles east of here. If you want the Brimming Sacred Pill back, tell him to look for me. I’d like to see him try taking it from a thousand miles away!”
Huangpu Qingtian flicked his hand and left filled with battle spirit.
The only one capable of stirring his will to fight may very well be Zhuo Fan in the whole of Tianyu.
Chu Qingcheng’s gang was stunned, [A challenge! One handed out personally by the glorious Heaven-shaking Dragon Lord, Huangpu Qingtian!] This was the greatest respect any martial fanatic could dream of.
Xie Tianshang was practically green with envy! If Huangpu Qingtian had given a challenge to him instead, he’d be bouncing and skipping in joy all year long.
Taking a deep breath, Chu Qingcheng said “The brat is cold and ruthless, but he is our only chance at winning this! Everyone is going to go and find Zhuo Fan!”
Zhuo Fan was their only and last hope…