The green-eyed team leader stomped the ground when he was just a few steps away from Yin Long, his black hair swaying thanks to the sudden halt to his momentum. He clenched his fist and sent it forward while giving a light twist of his body, his fist containing so much force that it compressed the air in front of it and launched it forward like a projectile.
It looked like a simple by-product of his punch, but Yin Long could feel a very well-hidden Qi inside the compressed air so he didn't underestimate it. His sword swept out and collided with the compressed air, a tremble running through his arm as his hand was pushed back slightly from the impact. But his blade cut through the projectile and left another mark in the air, the two pieces of the projectile dissipating before they reached him.
But several tens of metal spears materialized in the air around him at the exact moment his blade made contact with the compressed air, descending upon him without mercy. Yin Long had already proven beyond any reasonable doubt that he was dangerous, extremely so even, a second of mercy might mean a lifetime of regret.
But the sudden attack didn't leave Yin Long with no way of responding to it, a transparent sword radiating a heavy air appearing in his left hand as his Qi burst outwards. He used the transparent sword to draw a line on the ground around him, the heavy air radiating from it crushing the metal spears that came at him from below. As for the spears that came at him from above, his Qi covered them and cut them into tiny pieces.
The sword made from crushing energy vanished from his left hand, the curved cyan sword made from wind appearing instead as he slashed it upwards in a diagonal manner. The green-eyed captain quickly stepped forward while ducking down slightly, the sharp gust of wind going over his body as he stepped into range and sent his fist hurtling forward.
The stage beneath Yin Long's feet cracked open as the captain attacked, several small pillars of metal bursting forth to destabilize his footing. Yin Long's body wobbled slightly as the metal pillars pulled away from each other, causing his feet to slide away from each other, but he still managed to react and slash his curved blade downwards and his white sword upwards.
The eyes of the captain narrowed as he quickly made up his mind, several thick shields of metal materializing on both sides of his body to block the incoming blades as he continued his own attack. His fist crashed into Yin Long's waist and caused his body to bend around the fist, his white sword colliding with the metal shields and cutting through 9 of the 11 shields before it was stopped.
But the curved sword shrank before it touched the shields, turning into a dagger and slipping past the blockade. The captain wasn't too caught off guard by the change, Yin Long had done it once before already after all. He quickly raised his empty arm and stretched it out, grasping onto the blade just as it started to expand. His hand was sliced open, but he managed to stop the attack, or so he thought.
The sword warped again just as he grabbed it, turning into a circular rapier. Yin Long grit his teeth, his eyes flashing with a sharp light as he forced himself to remain in place, stomping his foot and transferring all the force into the rapier. His forehead split open at the same time, a pair of crimson wings covered in yellow veins sprouting from his back as the aura exuding from his body instantly shot up.
He pushed the rapier forward while giving his wrist a slight twist, the rotating weapon going through the amply open hand that had yet to adjust to the shrunken weapon. The captain barely had the time to duck to the side, preventing the rapier from piercing through his chest and instead allowing it to stab through his left shoulder.
But his surprise didn't end there, the weapon continued to grow after it pierced through his shoulder. It continued beyond him and reached the other 9th Immortal Door cultivator, who was catching up after blocking Yin Long's previous attack. He quickly lashed out with his blade and swatted the incoming rapier aside, the captain grimacing slightly as that action caused the part of the rapier that was still in his shoulder to move about violently.
Yin Long's body was still stuck to the fist of the captain thanks to the fact that he chose to remain in his current position for his attack, the captain choosing to take advantage of this before Yin Long moved away. He opened his clasped fist and grabbed onto Yin Long's waist, a layer of metal coating his fingers and turning them into claws that tore through his flesh.
Yin Long grit his teeth, a bit of blood leaking out from between them as he dissipated his rapier and replaced it with his scarlet sword. The flames immediately rushed out from the blade and assaulted the captain, who hopped back to dodge them, tearing out a chunk of Yin Long's flesh.
A bit of distance was made between them, the captain and his companion meeting up again and looking at Yin Long with grim expressions. He was missing a chunk of his waist, but that only added to the sinister aura that the crack in his forehead and the crimson wings on his back made him radiate. They both also understood what this was, a bloodline he had been hiding all along.
And it wasn't just them that were shocked, the audience were also caught off-guard. Lan Yun had already been warned in advance so she was a bit better off and could keep battling, she and Jin Wang heavily pressuring the two cultivators at the 7th and 8th Immortal Door.
The captain let out a heavy breath as he looked at Yin Long, doing his best to suppress the shock and tinge of fear that was starting to surface in his heart. He blocked the wound in his shoulder with some metal to stifle the bleeding, glancing at Yin Long's two swords as he spoke to his companion.
"It seems like he can only create those marks if he uses that white sword, put pressure on it and force him to switch it out."
These people weren't idiots, they wouldn't have gotten this far if they were. It hadn't been the longest exchange, but the captain had still managed to notice that only Yin Long's white sword left behind marks in the air, the other swords he pulled out didn't leave behind any lingering effects.
Yin Long didn't react to his words, but the captain wasn't wrong in his guess. Yin Long could only leave behind those marks if he used his actual sword, his other weapons were all based on different elements so he couldn't use his law of swords to make the force of the attack linger around. His blood sword and sword made from space were different, but neither of those swords would produce too great of an effect at the moment.
Yin Long lowered his arms slightly, the tip of his blade randomly tapping the stage three times. The blood leaking from his wounds and the blood that had been scattered by the other combatants suddenly rose up into the air, morphing into either scaled-leaves or feathers, some lingering around Yin Long and dancing through the air.
Yin Long's eyes moved slightly, some of the blood leaves shooting at the captain and his companion, Yin Long charging forward along with the blood. The brown-eyed companion swept out his swords, a crushing force bursting out and turning the incoming leaves into tiny droplets that quickly dissipated.
The Qi hidden in the leaves burst forth as they were crushed, several sharp burst of energy assaulting the companion, the new marks Yin Long had left in the air also descending upon him at the same time. The companion focused on blocking the incoming attacks, opening a path for the captain to meet Yin Long's charge unharmed.
Yin Long drew his white sword along the ground for a second, a light ring sounding out as he raised the tip from the ground and swept his sword up in a diagonal manner. Yin Long slashed out with his scarlet sword at the same time, drawing a scorching arc through the air as he aimed for the captain's chest from the side.
The captain narrowed his eyes when he saw the incoming attacks, his metal-covered arm shooting out to block the scarlet sword while he raised several metal shields to block the white sword. Yin Long could freely control the size of his swords, so it would be easier to block if he used his flexible arm rather than some shields.
But as his arm reached for the scarlet sword, he learned that he had yet to see all the tricks Yin Long had up his sleeve. Both swords vanished from his grasp, the white sword getting tossed into his interspatial ring while the scarlet sword was returned to his soul. And then he brought them both out again, but this time his white sword appeared in his left hand and his scarlet sword appeared in his right.
The captain's hand grasped the white sword and blocked it, a soft ringing sound echoing out and causing a soft light to flash in Yin Long's eyes. The captain's own eyes flashed as the warning bells in his mind went off, his pupils shrinking violently as he thought of something.
"The ringing is a signal, EVADE!"
The captain had figured out the truth, but it was already too late for any warnings, Yin Long's scarlet sword reached the metal shields he had put up. The sound of their collision echoed out, Jin Wang and Lan Yun both bursting forth with all their might at the same time. Jin Wang opened his maw at a 90-degree angle and unleashed a fierce swallowing force that acted upon the cultivator at the 8th Immortal Door.
The cultivator was unwillingly pulled forward two steps, Lan Yun allowing the attack from the 7th Immortal Door cultivator to hit her thigh so that her axe could collide with the large shield that the 8th Immortal Door cultivator was holding. The shield was torn up thanks to her laws of crushing and tearing, leaving him defenceless as Jin Wang swatted at him.
And as Jin Wang's paw swatted at the cultivator, Yin Long's own attack also reached the man. The lingering sword marks he had left in the position where he first attacked the captain's companion all landed on the cultivator, tearing several gashes in his body and severing his right arm from his body.
Lan Yun left him defenceless, Yin Long cut him up, and Jin Wang crushed his bones with a heavy swat. The man's feet left the ground as he shot through the air, already unconscious from the shock and pain as he flew out of the stage and bounced across the earth.
The cultivator at the 7th Immortal Earth pulled back his spear after leaving a gash in Lan Yun's thigh, immediately stabbing it forward to take advantage of her moment of weakness after launching an all-out attack. But the moment he gathered his strength, the remaining blood feathers and blood leaves that still hung in the air from earlier descended, raining down on him like a torrential downpour.
He did his best to block, but the sheer number of attacks made it impossible for him to defend against them all, even when he used his law of wood to create a defensive line. And Lan Yun and Jin Wang didn't let this chance go to waste, the stage beneath the cultivator rupturing upwards as Lan Yun launched him into the air with a pillar of earth.
Jin Wang charged over, the descending attacks all slipping past him as he raised his paw and swatted down on the man who hung in the air. The man stabbed out his spear and pierced it into Jin Wang's chest, but the lion's paw wasn't pulled back and smashed into his chest. His ribs disintegrated under the force and he was smashed into the stage, his eyes rolling back as bloody foam started to leak out from his mouth.
Jin Wang snorted disdainfully and ignored the blood pouring out from his chest, swatting the unconscious man aside and launching him out of the stage. He and Lan Yun then turned around and immediately charged towards Yin Long so that they could help him take care of the last two people.
They had simply acted far too fast, catching the enemies off-guard and giving them no chance to defend. By the time the two other cultivators had been launched out from the stage, the sound of Yin Long's scarlet sword colliding with the metal shields had just faded.
As for the metal shields that had been touched by the scarlet sword, the intense heat unleashed by the blade caused them to glow brightly. The captain glanced at his shields but realized that they wouldn't melt under the heat, his right fist shooting forward with a slight twist, a layer of metal coating it and turning it into a drill that shot straight for Yin Long's heart. But when Yin Long made his move, he always made sure to go directly for the kill.
The scarlet sword suddenly vanished and was replaced by an icy blue one, the chilly air radiating from it rapidly cooling down the glowing metal. And the rapid change from super-heated to super-cooled left the metal brittle and cracked, leaving it unable to muster even the slightest resistance in the face of Yin Long's blade.
The sword broke through the metal shields and headed directly for the captain's chest, a solemn and dignified expression appearing on his face. He didn't move back or dodge, he decided that trading injuries would be worth it because his would leave Yin Long more wounded. But once again, and this time for the last time, he learned that he had yet to see the true depths of Yin Long.
A fluctuation ran through the air between Yin Long and the captain, a transparent wave washing over the metal drill that was heading directly for Yin Long's chest. And then, under the dumbfounded gazes of the audience and the captain, the metal drill vanished, only the fist left behind.
The fist smashed into Yin Long's chest and broke six of his ribs, but it was far from as devastating as it would have been if the drill was still present. And as the punch landed on Yin Long's chest, his icy-blue blade turned into a crimson blade of blood that cut down across the captain's chest. The blade left a gash in his chest, the captain's face turning pale as the sword drew in and absorbed all the blood it could and leaving him in a weakened and fatigued state.
Yin Long was pushed back a few steps by the punch, but the captain also stumbled backwards, right into the range of the attacks that were continuously assaulting his companion and preventing him from aiding the captain. He received a few more cuts on his body before his companion managed to kick him to the side and out of the range, both of them wearing dumbfounded and grim expressions, none of them knew just how the drill had vanished.
But Yin Long knew, and even he was rather surprised by the strength he could dig out when he really gave it his all. After all, this was the first battle he was taking part in after increasing his cultivation and acquiring his bloodline, it was inevitable that he wouldn't quite know his own limits.
As for how he made the attack vanish, it actually relied on the principle of the sword technique Ravenous Beast. He split space into two dimensions, the original and one copy, but rather than copy something over, he moved the entire drill over into the copy dimension. And then he simply erased that copy dimension, erasing everything that was inside it as well. Even if he failed to erase the attack, he would at least weaken it heavily by erasing some of the energy in it.
He hadn't actually expected to fully succeed, but the sheer cost of succeeding eclipsed what he had expected. A mere fist-sized metal drill had drained a full 70% of his total Qi, leaving him with at best 5% at the moment. It was not a technique he could do repeatedly, but it certainly served its function right now.
The captain and his companion looked at the rapidly approaching Lan Yun and Jin Wang, also glancing at Yin Long and the several faint sword marks that still lingered in the air. They were shimmering as if they were about to vanish, but they couldn't tell how much longer they would stick around. The two looked at each other, the companion looking exceptionally unwilling since he had been basically restrained and forced to block the entire battle.
But they both knew that the outcome was already set in stone, the captain's wounds left him far too weakened to be of any assistance to the companion should the battle drag out any longer. As such, even if they were both unwilling and indignant, the captain was forced to squeeze out his words.
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