Chapter 202 – Battle Conclusion
The rain felt like a cloudy mist that had enveloped the entire area. Pei Zi Yun landed on the ground and stood before a forest with a river flowing by the side. Pei Zi Yun felt extremely distracted for some strange reason.
According to the original owner’s memories, he recalled being attacked by Dark Altar Sect as well. However this attack was supposed to happen several years later. Paradise had been overwhelmed by the enemy. The Sect Leader was killed in battle, and Song Zhi took over his position as the Sect Leader. In just a short span of four years, everyone Pei Zi Yun knew from within the sect had disappeared and were replaced by Dark Altar Sect disciples. It was almost like a subsidiary of Dark Altar Sect.
And now, the disaster had finally been averted.
However, it wasn’t completely over yet. At that time, he shouted out, “System!”
A white plum blossom appeared in his sight and gradually became bigger until it transformed into a white, semi transparent information interface. It bore with it faint light perception against the forested background which he stood before. The numbers and figures appeared before him.
“Yin Master : Level 1 (3.5% Completed)
“Dao Techniques, 39 Variations : Advanced
“Sword Techniques : Master (23.1% Completed)
“Divine Powers : Stars Transformation Level 3 (Maximum)
‘The last time I checked, my sword techniques were at 19.1%. Now that I’ve fully mastered and understood the Shen Family’s Thirty Seven Techniques, I’ve gained an additional 4%.’
‘The realms of an advanced swordsman is too difficult to reach.’
‘But it seems like Stars Transposition has reached its peak, and won’t be able to increase further. The remaining prestige points which I’ve acquired have been directed towards my Yin Master’s mastery and increasing it.’
‘It’s a pity. If I had more time, reaching Yin Master’s level 3 wouldn’t be difficult at all.’
After calming himself down, Pei Zi Yun squeezed into the thick bushes and his shadow vanished from view.
The rain had gotten smaller and tiny droplets of rain fell onto the earthen altar. An entire group of swordsmen stood still and alert. They were completely drenched from the rain earlier. Even the Elders no longer carried umbrellas with them. The Elders were completely focused on maintaining the earthen altar.
The earthen altar was emitting bright rays of light, which would occasionally flash out in a blinding beam. There were two tiles, one was jade and the other was gold. They represented the Yin and Yang, and were rotating furiously.
Every Elder present was dripping buckets of sweat and they were all in deep concentration. The Senior Elder was right in the middle, and their faces were all pale from exertion. They had to maintain the spell which would allow the Earth Immortal’s clone to manifest.
Not far away in a cave, a middle-aged Daoist with an entire head full of white hair was speaking to another Daoist who had just been sent to spy on the situation at Free Cloud Sect. He whispered in a ragged voice, “Impossible, check it out again!”
The Daoist knew that checking the situation once more would be futile, as the outcome would still be the same. But he acknowledged, “Yes!”
At this point the cave underwent some changes as the Daoist used his powers to spy. It was a broad cave, with many lanterns and candles flickering in the middle. These candles were extinguished immediately, causing the entire cave to descend into pitch darkness. The Daoist then conjured a spell and pointed at the ground, causing all the candles to light up once more. Once his spell expired, the lights were extinguished.
“They’re all dead?”
“Even Elder Liu is dead?” The middle aged Daoist started trembling, his face was pale and devoid of any color. He then ordered the Daoist, “Summon the fallen spirits. Ask them what exactly happened!”
The Daoist’s face started to quiver as well as he replied in fear, “Summoning spirits isn’t difficult at all. But only Elders have the authority to do that.”
The Daoist then mustered some courage as he exhaled, “Senior brother, you should ask the Elder for permission. If he agrees, I will then conjure the spell.”
The middle-aged Daoist paused for several moments in hesitation. He knew the reason fully well himself. Summoning spirits with the Fate Lantern wasn’t difficult at all. It’s just that the realms of the dead have many of their own secrets. If people were to frequently ask them for things unknown to the living, it could spoil the grand scheme of things. He finally sighed after mumbling to himself, “The Elders are all so deep in concentration, trying to maintain the spell. If I wish to ask them for permission, I would have to interrupt them. Based on the situation now, looks like I have no choice to ask the Elders.”
He then sighed and was about to leave the cave. All of a sudden, his heart lurched and he halted.
At this point, a single reflective sword ray could be seen darting towards him. This middle aged Daoist had quick reflexes as well and opened his mouth to shout. At the same time, the ring on his finger exploded in a white beam of defensive light.
“Pu!” The sword ran through the protective barrier without any issues, and stabbed right through his chest and exited from his back. The middle aged Daoist screamed out in pain which became a muffled choke as blood spewed out from his mouth.
The Daoist behind the middle aged Daoist was stunned as he hurriedly screamed out, “Assailant!”
Apart from the Daoist, there were another two fighters escorting them. At this point, the fighters drew their sword menacingly. Pei Zi Yun struck even faster than anyone could attack. The three of them felt an intense blinding light sear in their eyes from the gleam of Pei Zi Yun’s sword. All of them simultaneously felt as if they were the intended target of the assailant. Some of them moved forward to attack in their blinded state, while the other defended himself.
However, Pei Zi Yun’s shadow vanished from view. The next time he reappeared, the Daoist gave a loud groan and collapsed to the ground, fresh blood flying in all directions.
“You!” The pair of fighter felt tricked and they charged towards Pei Zi Yun, they attacked at the same time with wind and lightning on their blades.
Pei Zi Yun moved so quickly that his shadow was indistinguishable from his actual body, his sword advanced through the air threateningly. A loud “zhng” echoed out before he disappeared once again.
‘A military strategist would have to understand the Dao, as the ways of war teach the same principles.’ Pei Zi Yun’s breathing was somewhat ragged, his face had turned deathly pale. His physical formed materialized.
‘I didn’t expect to use such a crafty skill from the novels I read all those years ago.’
‘At the critical juncture of life and death, when I was being dangerously attacked by the three of them at the same time, I exhibited a skill I didn’t know I possessed. I fused my sword techniques with my spiritual energy. This then emitted a bright light, which caused all three of them to think that each of them were my primary target.’
When someone was pushed to a corner and was at the juncture of life and death, he would defend and protect himself. Hence, the three of them broke formation and did what they felt they had to do in order to save themselves. In that very precise moment, Pei Zi Yun was able to take out the Daoist.
The winds and thunder vibrated in his ear, and the killing had ended. The pair of men were on the ground, their lives had been snuffed out. One of them was leaking out his internal organs, as blood pooled around him. His body was still twitching in a deathly reaction, and his hand was still gripped on the hilt of his sword. His face was contorted in pain, and his mouth was open as if he had screamed to death. The other received a pierce into the heart and died very quickly.
‘Military strategies and sword fighting strategies are the same.’
‘No wonder the Japanese Samurais referred to their swords as “the war solution”. That makes sense.’
‘In order to reach the advanced stage of swordsmanship, the knowledge of military and fighting strategies are crucial.’ Pei Zi Yun had some blood on his face and he wiped it clean with his sleeve before wiping his bloody sword, ‘There aren’t many enemies left.’
A thin layer of white light scattered away. This was the sound shield which Pei Zi Yun had placed to prevent any shouts from being overheard by the group of Elders at the Earthen Altar. Pei Zi Yun knew that his shield wouldn’t be able to extend throughout the entire cave. Thankfully he realized that all he had to do was place the shield at the mouth of the cave.
‘I can’t sense any danger.’ Pei Zi Yun sneaked a peek and thought. There were four Elders around the the Earthen Altar which he had noticed earlier. Their attention were completely devoted to maintaining the spell and weren’t the least distracted by anything happening outside. There were four swordsmen around, protecting them.
After thinking for some time, Pei Zi Yun managed to find a clean set of Daoist robes lying around. He hurriedly changed into those robes before walking calmly towards the Earthen Altar.
The rain was still falling, albeit much lighter. It was somewhat hazy. The four swordsmen had been standing around for almost the entire day, but were still on high alert. They cast their glances around their surroundings, and knew that some of their men were within the caves.
They looked around, and saw that it was someone who looked like their own people. The swordsmen thus didn’t pay much attention to it. Only when the person seemed to be approaching them did they turn their heads once again to look. They then realized that he looked foreign to them.
“Who’s that?” The second he spat those words out, he saw the gleam of a blade and felt a certain chilliness touch his throat. At the next second, he fell over and died. The swordsmen to his left and right were alarmed as they drew their swords and dashed over.
“Go to hell!” An Elder who was still maintaining the spell didn’t even have time to react. His head was decapitated swiftly as blood splashed all around.
“Zhng zhng zhng”
The pair of swordsmen attacked relentlessly. Pei Zi Yun had to dodge, roll and somersault in order to avoid their blows. With a loud crack, Pei ZI Yun sliced off the top part of his scalp mercilessly. He opened his mouth wide in shock, before a loud scream of pain could be heard. The next moment saw white and red brain matter spilling out before he fell and died.
“We’re under attack. Wake up Elders.” A swordsman managed to shout out as the remaining three Elders raised their eyebrows and came to their senses.
Pei Zi Yun charged straight for an Elder. A swordsman saw what was happening and knew his intent. He dove forward recklessly and turned towards Pei Zi Yun to shield the Elder.
“Pu” The longsword stabbed right into his chest and exited from his back. The swordsman gave out a long shriek as his eyes opened wide in shock. Blood spurted out from his wound like a fountain.
“If you wish to attack your enemy to save someone, you must first save yourself.” In fact this swordsman was rather skillful. But when it came to doing smart moves, he revealed his weakness and thus was killed for it.
Pei Zi Yun turned his body nimbly and was about to strike the next Elder. But suddenly, the Elder looked at him and pointed at him.
Pei Zi Yun instantly howled in pain as he was forced to retreat three steps. While he was being forced back, he threw his sword toward the altar.
“Pow!” The longsword crashed into a tile, which was floating above the altar. This tile was the King Lu’s tile. A loud thud ensued from the tile, before the shadow of a tiny dragon emerged from it. It gave a loud shriek of agony before the entire tile cracked apart.
The remaining three Elders seemed like they had all been struck by lightning. They trembled violently and spat out mouthfuls of blood. An Elder then hissed, “Senior Elder, hurry and retreat from the spell!”
The pair of Elders and a swordsman were left. Pei Zi Yun wiped out blood from his own lips and felt his hands and feet go weak. It was almost as if he had no more strength left as he sighed, “What a pity.”
He had been involved in numerous battles and skirmishes. Although he already ate something light, his energy was more or less exhausted. His enemy was no better off at this point after withdrawing from the spell so abruptly, causing damage to their internal organs.
“If only I had half the energy I used to have, I would kill them all.” Pei Zi Yun thought as he turned away and rolled on the ground while picking up his sword.
Right at that time, something strange happened.
“Boom!” A red colored tiny dragon roared out, as it shivered and paused in mid air for several seconds before exploding into fragments. The Free Cloud Sect’s True Sovereign was holding onto an imperial edict, which glowed brightly at this point.
“I’ve won on earth as well. The King Lu’s tile which you borrowed has already been destroyed. Die now!” The True Sovereign shouted out loudly as the black energy which was wrapped around him disappeared.
“Damn it!” Seeing such a scene unfold before him, the Earth Spirit looked up before pointing out. Another loud explosion rang out, as a ball of fiery fire rose high up into the sky.
This Paradise had been severely weakened after being through such a devastating battle. The ball of fiery fire descended higher and higher in Paradise before finally disappearing into the darkness.
“True Sovereign, why did you let it go?” Someone asked.
“Paradise has been damaged enough. If we carried on fighting, even if we killed his clone, our Paradise might be completely destroyed.” The True Sovereign sighed. Red energy was leaking out from his body. Every time a sliver of red energy was expelled from his body it coalesced around Paradise, stabilizing it. His body started to decrease in size, “I’ve been hurt considerably as well. I have to meditate for some time in order to preserve the health of Paradise.”
“We had to battle up to this point, and the whole Free Cloud Sect has expanded all its might.” The True Sovereign then summoned a ball of flame, “The current Sect Leader won’t be able to hold out for much longer as well.”
These changes took place faster than they were described. Pei Zi Yun picked up his sword, as the earthen altar behind him started to disintegrate. The Senior Elder spat out a mouthful of blood as he started retreating.
Soon after, the entire altar exploded, causing a pair of Elders to spit blood out as well. Pei Zi Yun dashed straight for them. Since the pair of Elders were dealing with the backlash from the destruction of the altar, they didn’t have enough time to react and were killed immediately.
“No”! The remaining swordsman witnessed this scene and almost went berserk. So many Elders had died before him. Even if he were to return to the sect, he would be put to death. He thus dashed across without a care for his safety.
“Pu” Their shadows entwined with each other, as another line of blood appeared on his face. He stumbled several steps forward before collapsing to the ground.
“Hehe!” Seeing the Senior Elder scurrying far into the distance, Pei Zi Yun laughed out. Mid laughter, he spat out blood too.
‘You knew that my energy was completely exhausted?’ The rain splashed down upon Pei Zi Yun as the skies turned dark. Pei Zi Yun turned around and walked away, as the darkness of the night enveloped him. All the killing scenes he had witnessed earlier was almost like a bad dream he just had.