Cheng Hao smiled mockingly, but people didn’t blame him for being arrogant: he more than had the qualifications for it!
Suddenly, Wu Rou trembled and noticed Lao Jianghu was trying hard but still failed to keep his wide grin off his face.
“You old fox, you had this all planned out! Right now I cannot take back my word so…”
The message was simple and clear: “Sou Rou, you cannot afford to lose!”
Her lips barely moved, her words got compressed into a string and only her young disciple, Sou Rou could hear them: this was a mental message, a way to communicate without anyone else knowing what was being told!
The young girl nodded when she heard the voice by her ear. She gracefully bowed at her master and headed towards the center of the stony plateau. When she walked up to there, she turned to look at Cheng Hao ‘Just you wait… I will gain face back for my master and become the Head! To become the Sect Head, I won’t hold back even if you are only a kid!’
Yin Hei was fuming “Damn them! Those two have played me for a fool! And now, that old monster is a mid level Reverend stage cultivator as well, I can’t pressure those two as much as before!”
The First Protector turned to look at Zhao Bu and sent him a mental message as well “You have to crush that boy, understand? That technique is just something he used to scare us, I am sure he cannot use it too often, or else it would harm the body!”
Long Yin Hei was right: a technique that allowed a body to reach such speeds would indeed harm the body, but Cheng Hao had a Black Iron Rank Fleshly Body and the Roc’s blessing made him able to manipulate the air surrounding him!
It would do absolutely no harm at all to him even if he were to keep going at such speeds for half an hour, the only problem would be the great consumption of energy which he could also ignore thanks to his Golden Aura.
Still, there was no way that Yin Hei could know that, so he was sure that his deduction was correct.
Zhao Bu gulped: he was the only one that felt the horrible killing intent when he had looked at the young boy on his shoulder and the child had looked back. He felt as if the one standing on his arm was not a boy younger brother than he was, but a vicious God of Death instead!
Still, he could not disobey his master, so he reluctantly bowed as well and also headed towards the center of the Arena. Once there, he glared at the boy with pure golden eyes ‘I’ll destroy you and gain my face back! I will show you the strength of one surnamed Zhao!’
Cheng Hao looked at the two youths glaring at him and he smiled back. His eyebrow twitched and a vein popped on his head ‘These punks… I thought of letting them off, but they are actually glaring at me! Just wait and see if I don’t mess with you properly!’
The beautiful girl Te Rin looked towards her master pleadingly. Shui Jing smiled playfully and shook his head pointing at her forehead. The girl bit her lip and clenched her fists.
Te Rin looked at Cheng Hao, observing the mysterious youth with despair and fear. Cheng Hao felt her gaze and turned. His eyes scanned her body and brightened with surprise and horror. He knitted his brows and he stared at the Fifth Protector with disdain.
He disappeared and reappeared right beside the young girl. He smiled kindly and extended his hand “Hi, my name is Cheng Hao, what is yours?”
Te Rin was startled but she soon recovered. She gulped “Name is Te Rin… Ni-nice to meet you…” She grabbed the boy’s hand but as soon as she did so, Cheng Hao tightened his grip and tapped on her forehead. His fingers began to glow as they seemed to sink in the girl’s body.
The girl’s eyes widened and she started to feel an intense burning pain coming from her temples. “Aaaaaaaaagh!” She tried to shake Cheng Hao away, but he stood firm, not budging in the slightest.
“What!” Shui Jing trembled with rage and dashed towards the boy, applying pressure on him. Although he did that, Cheng Hao completely disregarded him: he had an ally he knew he could count on!
As he expected, Lao Jianghu’s eyes glinted when he looked at the young girl and his mouth opened slightly “Oh… What sight you have, kid!” He waved his hand and a Golden Blade materialized right in front of the Fifth Protector and embedded itself in the ground, blocking his way.
“Shui Jing, old friend, why are you in such a hurry? Can’t you see my disciple is helping your dear flower?” He asked and smiled gently. The crowd was astonished: clearly, that was definitely not what was going on!
Cheng Hao smiled when he heard that and concentrated on his task: slowly but surely, a speck of light began to flow out from the girl’s forehead and the young boy grabbed it as soon as it came out completely.
Te Rin fell on her knees and tears began to fall from her cheeks “Thank you, thank you!” She tried to bow, but Cheng Hao was faster and kept her back straight. The girl looked at him confused but smiled when she saw his wide grin.
“Don’t mention it!” He smiled and turned towards the fifth protector “Such trash that uses his own disciple to craft a Soul Crystal is actually one of my subordinates? I wouldn’t mind if it were an enemy, but your own disciple? A master for a day, a father for a life! You do not act as a father towards his daughter, you have no right to be her master!”
The crowd was shocked: a Soul Crystal? That was nothing more than a really powerful Elixir, a great cultivation resource! It is usually condensed out of a spiritual beast’s dead body, but there were some cases where it was refined from live humans, and the result was none other than death!
It would slowly but surely drain the body’s Qi, the spiritual energy, and condense it into a crystal but, by doing so, it would also harm the soul and in light cases the person would become a vegetable for their whole life, unable to regain consciousness, a death in all but the body. In most cases though, it would mean death!
Shui Jing trembled and his previous playful countenance had already been washed away “Wh-What are you talking about! Lao Jianghu, Third Protector, what is the meaning of this?”
Cheng Hao turned towards Wu Rou and threw the speck of light at the beautiful woman “My Second Protector, here is the Soul Crystal! I am sure you will help disciple Te Rin in gaining back her cultivation and, most importantly, help her find a new master!”
The boy turned to look at the girl “Of course, if you wish you could also decide to follow me and become my disciple, how about it?”
Te Rin, still stunned from the previous events stared at the youth in front of her, her eyes red from crying and her lips trembling from the shock.
“But I guess that would be way too weird for you! How about I become your brother instead? Of course though, I will be the big brother!” The boy smiled and bumped his fist into her shoulder, looking at her in the eyes.
“I will let you meet your younger siblings later, please take good care of them! I am sure that they wouldn’t mind such a young, beautiful and well mannered girl such as you!”
He stared deep into her pupils and she also gazed back: the boy’s black pupils seemed to hold incredible knowledge, there were traces ruthlessness, and killing intent burned deep into the black balls but the brightest flame, the one that caught her attention the most, was that of care, affection… And bright love!
Without knowing why, she felt that she could trust this boy, that he would never betray her! She nodded dazed and almost let out a loud cry when the boy nodded and looked away. She felt cold now that she was not looking into his eyes, as if those flames could somehow warm her heart and melt away all her problems.
She looked at the boy’s back and smiled: she would have nothing to fear now that he was here!
“Well?” Cheng Hao asked at the Second Protector “You finished?”
Wu Rou gritted her teeth, ignoring the arrogant tone, and she nodded “I am sure. This is a nearly completely formed Soul Crystal. In less than a day, it would have been completed, and disciple Te Rin would have died just like that! Actually…”
She shook her head” After the consumption of spiritual power and Qi in this fight the Crystal would have formed already and it could have been simply decided that she had been killed during the battle, allowing Shui Jing to pick up the Crystal from her body without anybody having any suspicions!”
“Shui Jing” Eight Protector Fa Guan, the Protector in charge of maintaining order and making sure that people followed the Sect Rules coldly spoke “Explain yourself!” His eyes glittered dangerously and a glittery chain appeared in his left hand.
The Fifth Protector sighed and then turned “There is nothing to explain! I just wanted to breakthrough! I feel my death getting closer with each year that passes, yet my cultivation is not increasing in the slightest bit! What would you have done? Her Qi was perfectly compatible with mine, I could not resist the temptation!”
Mu Gu frowned “Compatible? I heard that Fifth Protector’s Qi is the rare and powerful Crystal Phoenix Revolution… Could it be that Disciple Te Rin…”
“No” Cheng Hao shook his head “Her Qi is the Diamond Phoenix Revolution, a Sensed Qi even above Shui Jing’s Crystal Dragon Manipulation but of the same Treasured Phoenix branch. By consuming a Soul Crystal with such an attribute it would have probably helped him breakthrough to mid level Reverend stage…”
Mu Gu’s eyebrows rose and he turned to look at a pale faced Shui Jing as he stared shocked at the youth. The trash Fifth Protector gulped “Child… How do you know all of this? Who are you?”
The boy smiled “I told you, I am Cheng Hao!” He smirked “For trash like you, I will give nothing more than that information!”
The crowd bustled and discussed. “Was that all real? How did that brat find out about something like that? Even the Protectors didn’t notice!” A man asked.
The woman standing by his side shook her head “No idea! Maybe he really is worthy to become the Sect Head! If he is that knowledgeable, then it would probably help this Sect flourish even further!”
The man pondered “I am still not sure about his strength though. Sure, his speed is astonishing, but he may have used some kind of method that only works a few times, you never know! Let’s keep watching before passing on our judgement!”
Many such conversations took place all over the Arena, only one group was not too surprised about the events.
Xiao Wu sighed “That Cheng Hao… Why does he always flirt around? Will he never grow tired?”
Fu Yin’s eyes glinted “Brother, as soon as you come back you will have to teach me your playboy skills! I also want to be as confident and smart as you, how should I do that?”
Xiao Wu lifted one of her eyebrows and glared at him “Oh really? Well, if you are fine with it go on, I will surely not stop you!”
Fu Yin trembled “I-I didn’t mean it like that Sister, I swear!”
Yan Rui laughed and let go of the man she had been kissing up until a few moments ago. The body fell on the ground and it was abnormally dried up “Little Yin, you might be strong, but you will not get any girls if you are this dense!”
The boy tilted his head in confusion as Xiao Wu looked away “What are you talking about?”
Yan Rui frowned and looked at Xiao Wu, seeming to say ‘How do you put up with him?’
The young girl sighed and turned to look at the Arena “Still, brother has become so powerful, I wonder if I am too much weak compared to him…”
Fu Yin shook his head “Don’t worry, I am sure he won’t be disappointed! You have been training all day for the past two months, you are already amongst the peak Inner Disciples, the legend of the Blue Robed Night Challenger has already spread to the Core Sect and there are already many Core Disciples itching and waiting to fight you!”
Xiao Wu grinned at the boy and he also smiled back. The two people turned back to look at the situation below.
“I think we have made the audience wait enough!” Cheng Hao suddenly said “How about doing this? We will take care of the Shui Jing matter later!” He turned towards the Eight Protector: the old man nodded and took the Fifth Protector under his custody and bound him with the silver chains.
Lao Jianghu also nodded and yelled “Cultivators from the Mysterious-Light Shadow, thanks for your patience! We will now begin the fight! Those disciples of the Nine Protectors who wish to fight, please head to the center of the ring!”
Cheng Hao turned to look at Te Rin behind him and made a victory sign “‘Be back in a bit!” He started walking towards the center of the Arena: there were a total of five people there: Zhao Bu, Sou Rou, Fang Lu, Dan Yang and another youth that Cheng Hao had seen standing by the side of the Seventh Protector earlier: apparently, he had also decided to join.
Te Rin hesitated at first but then mustered up courage and asked “H-How can you be so sure that you will win? That you won’t die because of a mistake on your part? Do you not fear death?”
Cheng Hao stopped in his tracks and his face darkened “Do you know… What happens after death?”
She shook her head “I don’t. Nobody does, that is also why people are afraid of dying, because they don’t know what will happen to them afterwards!”
Cheng Hao lifted one of his eyebrows and smiled “That is correct. Now I will ask you…” He leaned in and whispered by her ear “If you were to know what would happen if you were to die… Would you be scared then?”
Te Rin gaped and stared into Cheng Hao’s amused eyes shocked. The boy smiled playfully and turned as she fell on her knees… She was speechless: what was Cheng Hao implying? If what he said was true, then…
The boy shook his head and pointed at the sky “Besides… I won’t die! Let’s just say that I simply cannot die unless I realize what I am fated to do! After all, there is a guy up there… And he is waiting for me! I cannot just make him wait in vain!”
The girl looked up and questioned “Somebody close to you who died?”
Cheng Hao’s smile turned into a fiendish grin and a murderous aura surged out like a hurricane, with his body being at the very eye of the storm “You couldn’t be more wrong my dear… He is alive and well, and that is the very problem!”
Te Rin’s eyes widened and Cheng Hao walked towards the five people in the middle of the ring. They could all feel powerful killing intent coming from the young boy and they couldn’t help but take a step back.
Cheng Hao looked at each person around him: Zhao Bu looked at him hatefully and was gritting his teeth; Sou Rou was staring at him a bit fearfully but still showed determination; Dan Yang raised his eyebrows and didn’t speak, instead gathered his strength into his body, ready to fight at any moment; the new kid trembled under his gaze but didn’t back off and courageously glared back; finally, Fang Lu smiled at him and lightly bowed.
Cheng Hao smiled and bowed back: he would always repay favors with favors, respect with respect… And an insult with decapitation!
“Everybody, get ready!” Yin Hei’s voice sounded out and he lifted his hand up.
“Be-” Wu Rou also lifted her slender arm up in the air.
“-GIN! AHAH! FIGHT FOR THE SECT YOUNG ONES, FIGHT FOR YOUR DESTINY!” Lao Jianghu loudly yelled and laughed, the three mid level Reverend stage Protectors’ hands fell down, indicating that the fight had started!
Cheng Hao smiled and stepped forward…
The fight for the title of the Sect Head had finally begun!!