Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
On the battle observation deck of the North County troops...
Tantai Xuan's eyes were dark, and his face was grim. Under the immense amounts of Qi and blood he was emanating, his large red cape flapped wildly behind him.
The closed city gate of Beiluo City had been opened again.
Lu Changkong, who should have been held in check by those four Grandmasters, had slipped through the small gap in the gate and escaped back into his city.
"What pieces of sh*t!" Tantai Xuan spat, trying to calm himself down.
The three major aristocratic families inside Beiluo City had greatly disappointed him.
"That was our one chance. Now that Lu Changkong has gotten back inside Beiluo City, he'll hide within his walls like a turtle. He won't fall for the same goading again. It will be extremely difficult to find another opportunity to kill him off easily."
Tantai Xuan took a deep breath. He knew that the best opportunity to attack Beiluo City had slipped from him just like that.
Next to Tantai Xuan stood a dapper gentleman in full scholarly dress.
"Since Lu Changkong wasn't inside the city, there was no Grandmaster to watch over his troops. How did the three families fail?" The scholar shook his head, unable to figure out what had gone wrong.
Tantai Xuan ignored the scholar's mumblings.
"I only want results. I don't care how it happens..." Tantai Xuan hissed.
He made a quick decision. He drew the sword from his waist, pointed it to the sky, and started issuing orders. "While Beiluo City is still divided and in turmoil, send all our soldiers forward. We have to attack the city immediately!"
The order went out, and all 50,000 troops of North County immediately started moving toward the city wall.
Back at Beiluo City, the air seemed to have stilled for a moment.
Luo Yue looked at Lu Fan, open-mouthed.
He had followed Lu Changkong for many years, but he'd had very little interaction with Lu Fan.
Who knew that Young Master Lu was such a bloodthirsty man?
How could a Young Master with so little strength and mobility say that he had the back of a Grandmaster?!
"Young Master… The City Master has returned to the city, so we shouldn't attack at this moment. I think we should wait for the City Master and formulate a proper plan first," Luo Yue said. "There are four Grandmasters outside the gate. Ning Zhao may have reached Grandmaster level, but things will go poorly if she challenges four others alone."
Lu Fan sat in his wheelchair while Ni Yu obediently held up the umbrella to shield his eyes from the glaring sunlight.
After hearing Luo Yue's words, Lu Fan nodded solemnly. As his palm supported his chin, his index finger tapped lightly on his cheek.
"Uncle Luo, you have a point. But I, Lu Fan, have been paralyzed since I was young, and my mind is very twisted. I am a very petty man, and I can't take any offense."
"Even my father has never scolded me before, so how could those idiots below do that?" Lu Fan replied.
With that, he tapped Ning Zhao's supple waist again.
"Sister Ning, go ahead. I have your back."
"Young Master, your wish is my command."
Lu Fan smiled.
Ning Zhao gave a mesmerizing smile and rolled her eyes at Lu Fan in a way that he found rather amorous.
But he wasn't certain if the eye-roll was because Lu Fan had touched her waist, or if it was because he'd admitted that he couldn't take offense.
"Tsk... Men," Ning Zhao thought. She remembered very well how Lu Fan had claimed that his temper was excellent earlier. How had that changed in the blink of an eye?
Luo Yue opened his mouth but couldn't say anything in response.
This was a one-versus-four battle, and the four on the other side were all Grandmasters. Lu Fan was sending Ning Zhao to die.
With a rush of Qi and blood, Ning Zhao flew from the city wall, weightless as a swallow. She stepped on the sturdy stone tiles of the city gatehouse, and her white dress billowed, the light material dancing in the wind.
She floated down from the top of the 50-foot-high structure and landed gracefully on the ground.
Feng Shi was still yelling and cursing when he felt a rush of wind over his head, and he turned his head up in shock.
The four Grandmasters on horseback also looked up.
"Who is that?" All four Grandmasters focused their gazes, following Ning Zhao as she floated down from the gatehouse.
She looked like a fairy descending from the heavens. All the North County troops paused for a moment to take in the scene.
This incomparable elegance was as beautiful as a painting, capturing all of their attention.
Ning Zhao still held her Cicada Wing Sword, her face cold and calm. She was like a fairy, proud and distant, an iciness in her soul that had withstood thousands of years.
Her brows furrowed slightly as her gaze locked on Feng Shi. There was a murderous air around her.
This was the man who had humiliated and insulted her Young Master.
If the Young Master hadn't wanted him alive, Ning Zhao would have chopped this man into pieces!
The Young Master's life was hard enough as it was, and now he had been insulted by this piece of trash. This man deserved to die!
As she fell, she swung the Cicada Wing Sword horizontally, and a light-blue wisp of Spirit Qi came from within her dantian.
An invisible wave of air moved next to her and complimented the rush of Qi and blood.
Ning Zhao then gracefully landed on the ground.
Her gaze was still locked on Feng Shi.
Her full, red lips opened, and her cold, arrogant voice rang out. "I am Qi Core Realm cultivator, Ning Zhao."
"According to my Young Master's orders, I'm here to take your lowly life."
Behind Beiluo City's gate...
Lu Changkong turned away from the corpses of his subordinates. His eyes were bloodshot.
Suddenly, the hair on his bare upper body all stood on end. He could feel tremendous power being unleashed outside the city gate. Lu Changkong frowned deeply.
"This is a very strange sort of Qi and blood… Who is attacking outside the city?"
Yi Yue was still pale and lying on the ground where she had collapsed, but when she felt the rush of power outside the city, her face lit up.
"Master, it's Sister Ning…"
Lu Changkong shook his head. "Nonsense! Ning Zhao is only a First-Tier practitioner. How could she have Qi and blood flow of this level? Also, isn't Ning Zhao supposed to be by Fan'er's side?" Lu Changkong said sternly.
Yi Yue looked a little fearfully at Lu Changkong.
"Master, everything I've said is true. Sister Ning has been aided by the Spirit Qi that Young Master got through an encounter with an immortal, and now she's reached the Grandmaster level. I came to open the city gate because Young Master ordered me to."
Yi Yue had pursed her lips, but eventually, she pushed these words out stubbornly, even though she was still fearful.
This time, Lu Changkong looked at her in stunned silence.
An encounter with an immortal?
What was this nonsense?
He was a martial arts practitioner and didn't believe in immortals or deities.
He only believed in Qi and blood and his fists!
The silence stretched. Ning Zhao's declaration of judgment rang clearly from outside the city gate.
Tantai Xuan was standing on the battle observation deck pulled along by several horses as he continued to hold his sword up.
He saw that incomparably beautiful figure float down from the top of Beiluo City's gatehouse, and his pupils narrowed.
Tantai Xuan took a deep breath.
"That woman… Who is she?"
This scene, which resembled some mythical creature descending from the heavens, etched itself deeply into his heart.
But none of the generals around him knew the name of this woman.
Even Tantai Xuan's most trusted advisers and scholars merely opened their mouths, but they couldn't come up with a name from the list of Grandmasters that they already knew.
"Beiluo City has an additional Grandmaster, and none of you knew about this?"
Tantai Xuan glared at everyone before him and laughed, incredibly angry.
He was still wondering why Lu Changkong had dared to leave the city himself. So there was another Grandmaster within the city to hold the fort!
No wonder the three families had failed.
If he had known there was a second Grandmaster inside Beiluo City, he would have changed his plans.
He'd thought he was the one who had laid a trap for Lu Changkong, but in the end… Lu Changkong had dug a hole for him and waited for him to jump in.
Lu Changkong… He was good at this!
Tantai Xuan's face slowly darkened.
"Don't be too worried, Mayor. We have four Grandmasters on our side, while Beiluo City only has two. We still have the upper hand," the scholar, Mo Ju, said with a faint smile.
Tantai Xuan realized that the man was right, and he calmed down.
But now the arrow was already on the bow, and it had to be shot.
He had no choice but to continue the attack.
"Hahaha! Little lass, I'm a general under Mayor Tantai. You dare try to kill me?" Feng Shi laughed loudly when he heard Ning Zhao's words, his eyes fierce.
So what if she was a Grandmaster?
Feng Shi was the fiercest general of North County!
He pulled on his horse violently. The horse let out a loud whinny as it kicked its front legs high, and its mane went flying.
Once its front legs hit the ground again, everyone thought Feng Shi was going to attack, but unexpectedly…
Feng Shi turned the horse around and rode away without even looking back. He was making a swift escape, his survival instincts greater than anything else.
He was running away, pride abandoned.
The four Grandmasters were a little taken aback. They looked at each other grimly.
"Qi Core Realm… What realm is that?"
"She said she's a cultivator. What is a cultivator?"
The four Grandmasters exchanged glances. They were Grandmasters in martial arts. They were considered to be experts in this field and had great knowledge in it, but they had never heard of a Qi Core cultivator.
"Pfft! Perhaps this woman is just trying to use this nonsense to confuse us," the Grandmaster general under Tantai Xuan said coldly.
In the next moment, he whipped his horse and headed for Ning Zhao.
The other three Grandmasters exchanged glances, then followed.
Ning Zhao's Qi and blood were strange and ferocious, but… she was on the same level that they were, after all.
The four Grandmasters sped ahead on their horses, Qi and blood filling the air.
They hadn't been able to capture Lu Changkong, so now they directed their anger at Ning Zhao. They hoped they could do something now to make up for their earlier mistake.
Feng Shi was escaping towards Tantai Xuan's troops.
The four Grandmasters were on their way to kill Ning Zhao, but her eyes were still fixed on Feng Shi.
She didn't even cast a single glance at the four Grandmasters.
Back at the gatehouse...
"Ni, push me over to the edge of the wall," Lu Fan said in a low voice.
Ni Yu's face was all red as she started to fold the umbrella.
"I'll do it." Luo Yue stepped over behind Lu Fan and pushed his wheelchair to a part of the wall that was low enough for him to look out.
Lu Fan looked into the distance. He could see the 50,000 troops from the north approaching the city like dark clouds.
He turned his focus to the battle that was going on just at the bottom of this city wall.
They needed to finish the battle below as quickly as possible. If the troops made it here before Ning Zhao was done, she wouldn't be able to fight them off. Not even a Grandmaster could handle that disadvantage in numbers.
Lu Fan couldn't bear to part with his Spirit Qi, but since he now had the Fantasy Qi Refining Manual that would help him to refine more Spirit Qi, he could make an endless amount of the spiritual energy.
So now, he could afford to be generous.
Luo Yue looked at Lu Fan doubtfully.
Lu Fan slowly lifted his hand and pinched his thumb and index finger together with his palm facing upwards.
Ning Zhao had to win this battle.
If one wisp of Spirit Qi wasn't enough…
…she could have another.
When he had confirmed his Spirit Qi's Deployment Target as Ning Zhao…
Lu Fan's lips twitched a little as he flicked one finger outwards.
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