Chapter 690: The Right to a Challenge
Translator: Sparrow Translations Editor: Sparrow Translations
Shi Tianhao faced the eight cultivators and he performed a spell. Under the power of the mana, the small world and the Starry Treasure Pagoda disappeared.
The Dharma Hall before everyone was once again a room with two floors. The bottom floor was entirely dark. Only the arena above was open to everyone.
“The top eight cultivators from the second round would be split into pairs according to their performance in the previous round. The top would be the paired with the last, the second-best would be paired with the second-last and so on.”
“At the same time, the one with the better ranking would be allowed to pick the terrain.”
Everyone, regardless whether it was Xu Yunsheng or the other cultivators watching the battle, was slightly taken aback.
Compared to the pairing, the second point was where the better-performing cultivators of the previous round truly possessed an advantage.
The cultivators who took part in the conference were all in the Aurous Core stage or the Foundation Establishment stage. In a battle, if one party had an obvious geographical advantage, then the battles would not be balanced.
However, as this was agreed upon beforehand as the reward for the better performing cultivators of the previous round, no one raised any objection.
Hence, everyone began to ponder.
“The first shall be paired with the eighth, does that mean Senior Xu shall be paired by Senior Ying Luozha?” Huang Zhenting asked curiously. “Eh, the two of them are matched so quickly. This will be interesting to watch.”
A look of worry crossed Zhuge Wanqiu’s face. She saw Ying Zhaluo sweeping aside the fog before him in one gesture. Immediately, he brimmed with energy and a strong will to battle.
Xu Yunsheng was calm like Mount Tai. His face did not change.
“The second one shall be paired against the seventh, Senior Yuting will be fighting against the cultivator from the Ethereal Mountain Sect… what’s his name again?” Huang Zhenting scratched her side slightly apologetically. Zhuge Wanqiu regained her senses and reminded her, “Chu Yang.”
“Right, Senior Yuting will be fighting against Chu Yang from the Ethereal Mountain Sect,” Huang Zhenting nodded her head. “The third against the sixth…”
In the Central Grand Pavilion at the top of Yun Peak, a youth quietly watched Lei Jie in the light projection as he mumbled to himself, “… the third against the sixth… Chen Xingyu of the Great Void Sect will battle against Lei Jie of the Lei Family.”
“The fourth against the fifth, which means Lin Tong shall be matched against Yuncong…” In the Grand Heavens Pavilion, a bitter expression crossed Xiao Yan’s face, wiping away the smile that was previously there.
Zhu Yi, Wang Lin, and the rest looked on helplessly and sympathetically at their Big Senior.
The final pairing was viewed as an internal battle within the Celestial Sect of Wonders. Others looked on with schadenfreude, as they realized that the Celestial Sect of Wonders had become a victim of its own rules.
In this spiritual conference, the cultivators from many sects participated. While the Celestial Sect of Wonders had many disciples, it was still the minority in the conference.
However, the power of the Celestial Sect remained unchanged. Amongst the top 8 contestants, 5 were from the Celestial Sect. Furthermore, Zhuge Wanqiu, Li Xingfei, Huang Zhenting were all disciples with the potential of entering the top 8 and potentially allowing the Celestial Sect to dominate the top 8 placings.
Such a hegemonic performance made the Vivant Joy Holy Man, Huo Xiu, the Sun Radiance Swordmaster and the Supreme Radiance Swordmaster think back to the Spiritual Conference of Huanghai.
This time, however, Xu Yuncong and company did not exhibit the overpowering dominance that Zhu Yi and Shi Tianhao had shown earlier on.
However, compared to the sparse manpower of the Celestial Sect of Wonders during the Spiritual Conference of Huanghai, where only Zhu Yi and Shi Tianhao took part in the Aurous Core round, there were much more Celestial Sect disciples this time. In fact, as these disciples were abundant in both tiers, other sects could feel the pressure.
However, as a result of the rules, the Celestial Sect of Wonders would come into an internal conflict despite having 5 people advancing to the next round.
Lin Feng watched this scene with interest. He did not care so much about two of disciples not making past the first round. Since they had agreed on the rules, everyone ought to follow it.
Overall, the top eight were all within his predictions. Unlike Xiao Yan and Zhu Yi who viewed Chu Yang as a dark horse, Lin Feng mentally noted that he would definitely make it to the top eight in this conference.
As to the overall results after the second round as well as the final results of the conference, Lin Feng was unsure. After all, there were too many factors involved.
Lin Feng expected Zhou Yuncong, Chen Xingyu, Chu Yang, Dao Yuting, Xu Yunsheng, Ying Luozha to advance past the second round. This was no surprise.
Lin Tong, Huang Zhenting, Zhuge Wanqiu, Li Xingfei, Lei Jie, Fan Xuefeng and Shi Jingyun would compete for the remaining two slots.
The final result was that Lin Tong and Lei Jie were successful.
To Lin Tong and Lei Jie, Lin Feng lowered his expectations of them. That was not because he had no confidence in their abilities. Instead, they had yet to mature and their performance varied quite a lot and was full of chance occurrences.
From a certain perspective, they were the same type of people as Shi Jingyun of the Great Qin Empire.
Looking at the final results, Lin Tong’s results weren’t bad. In both rounds, she had her victory handed to her. Furthermore, not only did she just manage to advance to the next round, she was ranked fourth.
Huang Zhenting, on the other hand, met with many mishaps.
However, Lin Tong’s luck was at its end. Actually, when Zhou Yuncong was ranked fifth, Xiao Yan did not care much. Lin Feng smiled and shook his head as he thought, “In the top 8, Lin Tong could beat anyone except Zhou Yuncong, who’s under Yang Qing.”
“Even if Lin Tong battled against two opponents at the same time from the other top cultivators, she would have a better chance compared to battling against Yuncong.”
This time, Lin Tong had met her match. Zhou Yuncong was the only one with a 100% of beating her.
Meeting Zhou Yuncong was the equivalent of Ding Runfeng, a Great Void Sect disciple who was a pure Yang entity, meeting Zhou Yuncong. She would be trapped completely.
Zhou Yuncong himself did not mind. Objectively speaking, his favorite opponent would be people like Lin Tong and Ding Runfeng.
Cultivators who cultivated fire-type spells would need at least 2 types of primordial fires to successfully battle Zhou Yuncong, who was a Yang Incinerating Entity.
However, that could only ensure that they would not face an inherent disadvantage against him and that the battle would be fair.
The ultimate victory would still depend on many reasons. Only by brawling it out could the victor be determined.
However, the Seven Legendary Primordial Fires were the most dynamic forces in the world. It was difficult for them to exist in one being. Cultivating more than one type of primordial fire was extremely difficult.
Xiao Yan was an exception and a rarity. He too was only able to do so with the help of the powerful mantra “The Heavenly Classic of the Way’s Virtues” and even so he suffered a lot on the way.
Lin Tong possessed strong innate abilities and a good foundation. However, she only had the mastery of a Foundation Establishment stage cultivator. She could only battle against Zhou Yuncong with the Pure Yang Primordial Fire, which was tantamount to suicide.
“If we let Lin Tong and Yuncong battle against a third party, then their performances would not differ by too much. However, letting the two of them battle each other guarantees defeat for Lin Tong,” said Lin Feng as he shook his head with a smile.
Thinking about it too, Xiao Yan smiled bitterly.
Yang Qing too smiled bitterly. He did not know what to say.
In the Dharma Hall, Yan Wuwei, who still did not know much the situation, was mumbling to himself, “Junior Zhou truly knows how to hide his talent. I can’t believe he managed to get into the top eight. Earlier on, when he was ascending the Starry Treasure Pagoda, he was much slower than everyone else.”
“However, let’s not underestimate our junior Lin Tong too. She may be young but she’s very strong. Junior Zhou may not be her opponent. There’s hope for a disciple of the Inferno Inferno Precipice to enter the top four.”
Liu Xiafeng, who was next to Yan Wuwei, looked at him. The odd gaze made the hairs on Yan Wuwei’s body stand. Then, Liu Xiafeng said bitterly, “Regardless who Junior Lin meets from the top eight, be it Xu Yunsheng, Ying Luozha, Senior Yuting or even Chen Xingyu from the Great Void Sect, I’m confident that Little Junior will do well. However, meeting Yuncong is truly bad luck.”
Yan Wuwei stared with his mouth agape as he said, “Xiafeng, you…”
Liu Xiafeng then said, “Junior Zhou has the innate ability to check cultivators who cultivate Yang-type mantra. Regardless whether it’s my Grand Sun Primordial Flame or Junior Lin’s Pure Yang Primordial Fire, the results would be the same.”
Yan Wuwei then asked curiously, “How do you know, Senior Xiafeng”
Liu Xiafeng retorted with a question of his own, “Weren’t you curious why did my abilities seem to have deprived compared to the mini spar we had three months ago?”
Yan Wuwei nodded his head. Liu Xiafeng opened his palms and said, “Earlier on, I challenged Junior Zhou to a match. In the end, I lost completely to him. The Grand Sun Primordial Flame I’d been cultivating was nearly lost too. Thankfully, he showed mercy to me. If not, the Scripture of the Great Heaven-Illuminating Sun which I had been cultivating would have been wasted.”
Yan Wuwei looked stunned. He could not speak.
By his side, he heard Shi Tianhao’s voice. “In the third round, there would be prizes too. The winner will be accorded the right to a Baptism of the Original Stellar Light.”
Upon saying that, the reaction was not very strong. Many people, including the eight cultivators before Shi Tianhao, did not know what did the prize entail.
Shi Tianhao did not provide any more explanation as he continued, “For the second to fourth-place contestants, they would win a chance to cultivate in the Heavenly Cosmic Ray World if they are from our sect. If not, they will win the right to freely enter the Celestial Wonders World.”
“Those who are defeated in the first round need not despair. You will have prizes too,” Shi Tianhao said with a smile. “Those who are defeated in the first round will win the chance to spar with either my seniors or myself. You can pick one of us to be your sparring partner.”
“Through a spar of our mantras, we can help each other improve,” Shi Tianhao extended his thumb and pointed to his nose and said with a smile, “For example, you can fight against me. If all four of you fight against me in succession, that’s fine too.”
Shi Tianhao’s words were polite. However, the Dharma Hall burst out into discussion. The immediate disciples of the Master of the Celestial Sect were famous.
Xu Yunsheng and the other eight of them did not have such a big reaction. They all sought to progress. Prizes were not as important as fame.
Only Chu Yang’s gaze seemed slightly off.