Chapter 445: The Blade of Jun Yongye

    Chapter 445: The Blade of Jun Yongye

    "That was an incredible spectacle! I have no idea what it was Jiang Yuan summoned, but I wouldn't be surprised if we saw it again before the end of the tournament. Perhaps we'll see even more to come."  Mo Xiao's voice rang through speakers around the arena. Her sweet voice never failed to draw every eye. It stirred them from their stunned silence.

    She went on. "Now, we will proceed to fight selection for group three."

    Four new portraits appeared. Meanwhile, a dim light hung over the ring as the floor began the process of repairing itself. Recovery was longer this time, though that was no surprise after what they'd witnessed.


    The portraits immediately shuffled in the air above them, quickly arranging themselves in to pairs. It was decided.

    "Group three, round one; Yan Ningya against Jun Yongye, and the Driver against Cao Shuiqin."

    The Accountant's advice had been dire no matter who the Driver ran up against. Use his potential to the best of his abilities, was the official answer. If he triumphed, it would be a mighty feat.

    The Driver would face off against Cao Shuiqin, the one the Accountant had praised so highly. First, however, were the disciple and the swordsman. Yan Ningya was the disciple of the Great Conclave's second Paragon, the Epochrion. Her foe was a man the Accountant knew little about, only that his Discipline involved his sword - Jun Yongye.

    Lan Jue turned his eyes toward Yan Ningya, who was rising to her feet. The wind caught the veil that hid her features from view, making it flutter. But while her face was hidden, her eyes were a dazzling prismatic display that drew the viewer in. She slowly made her way out to the ring.

    Jun Yongye also rose, and Lan Jue took the measure of this mysterious Adept for the first time. He looked like he might be around thirty, not terribly handsome, with a medium build. He had pale white skin with dark eyes - not someone who really stands out from a crowd. However, if someone were to give him more than a passing glance, they would discover something different about his bearing. He was dressed in white, but nothing with modern appeal or stylish cut. It was a long robe, like the style they might have worn in the former era Chinese dynasties. His long hair had been coiled up and fixed to the top of his head with a wooden clip. All in all, it was a very oriental flavor.

    He entered the ring with the same poise Cao Shuiqin bore. His gait looked almost lazy, but to Lan Jue's trained eyes he could see the flow in them. They were precise, and very evenly spaced.

    The Pharmacist regarded him as well, with her brows pressed together in thought. The light of curiosity flitted behind her eyes.

    "What do you think about this one?" Lan Jue asked her.

    She shook her head. "It's hard to say. This will be a battle between a fierce tiger and a mighty dragon. I think they're more evenly matched than any fight we've witnessed yet."

    Zeus was genuinely surprised. "You think Jun Yongye is that skilled?" His surprise could be understood. After all, Yan Ningya was the disciple of a Paragon. She had one of the most fearsome of Disciplines at her command, Time. She was one of the delegates the North pinned their hopes on to win the tournament. If the Pharmacist's estimations were correct, then that spoke volumes to Jun Yongye's capabilities.

    The Pharmacist answered. "He's a difficult one to read. He seems kind, and there's something familiar... as for the limits of his strength, we'll only know when we see him in action. At our levels, Discipline isn't the only factor for victory."

    Lan Jue nodded in agreement. "I'm anxious to see what we discover."

    The two competitors entered the arena together from opposite sides. Jun Yongye's robes flapped in the breeze, like he'd just come in from the wild lands. An amicable smile spread his lips.

    Yan Ningya's expression was hidden beneath her veil, but her eyes continued to flash hypnotically. The audience attention was almost subconsciously drawn to those eyes.

    "Three, two, one. Begin!"

    Jun Yongye wrapped up the outer layer of his robes with his left hand and swept it behind hand back. His right hand extended, and beckoned towards Yan Ningya. Very refined.

    His opponent nodded back, as though in greeting. She did not rush to engage. By all appearances, they looked more like friends than competitors.

    Then, Yan Ningya shot her right hand in to the air. An odd sword appeared in a flash of white, clutched in her grip. Its length was its most defining feature. An average sword was about three and a half feet long, maybe four. This sword was a full six feet long, and was composed of pure energy.

    This Northerner from the Conclave was a swordswoman?

    In all her former fights she'd hardly had to try. In fact, she'd hardly had to move. Vicious use of her Discipline had been enough to quickly attain victory.

    "Brother Jun! I hear there's no one in the tournament with a better comprehension of protogenia than you. If I'm honest, though, I'm not convinced. I'm anxious for a lesson in swordsmanship." Yan Ninya's voice carried far across the arena, but oddly spaced. Some were long, and others short, and tumbled over one another in an alluring sort of rhythm. Every word was an enticing coo that pulled at the listeners' hearts.

    "Their praise is unwarranted," he assured her. "But I would be happy to assist little sister in her hobby."

    Jun Yangye reached out as though grabbing for something, and at his gesture a flash of light stretched from within his hand. An ordinary-looking, four-feet long sword appeared.

    Yan Ningya's delicate foot stepped forward, just half a foot, and then she was gone. In the next instant she reappeared directly in front of Jun Yongye.

    The Pharmacist gasped. "Phasing!"

    She swiped her sword toward his face as it blazed an angry white.

    But a change had overcome Jun Yongye, the moment that sword appeared in his hand. His warm eyes sharpened to a single point, the blade. The point of it swayed a little, slowly slanting forward.

    Achieve without acting. The very minute adjustment to the sword's angle had it collide squarely with the flat of Yan Ningya's sword. Their collision was marked with a piercing ring!

    And then a puff! Yan Ningya immediately disengaged and retreated, much to everyone's surprise. Then they saw that her sword had been broken clean in half. The front part had dissolved in to motes of crackling light and vanished before reaching the ground.

    That noise, though, wasn't the noise of the Adept's sword breaking. It sounded like a quick rush of air, like puncturing a balloon. The ring's uppermost shields exploded outward.

    The colors flashing in Yan Ningya's eyes displayed pure astonishment. She urged energy through the sword, reforging it in a blink. She pressed the advanced, flowing gracefully in to attack. She became a whirling of motion, her sword flashing dangerously as it came at him from a dozen different angles.

    Jun Yongye never looked at her, never looked up. His eyes were locked firmly on the sword. He turned it again, down and diagonally just a few degrees.


    Yan Ningya's sword broke again, but there was no dramatic explosion like last time. Everything was normal.

    On the surface this was beginning to look like a fight between wu shu masters, not Adepts. A few knowing spectators, however, knew that what had transpired in the last moments was crucial.

    Lan Jue, the Pharmacist, and the Terminator all watched with that knowing look.

    What Jun Yongye was using wasn't swordsmanship. It wasn't protogenia either, but a sort of it... the true way of the sword.

    No one knew what the man's comprehension entailed, but it made the hair on the Terminator's skin stand on end. It reminded him of someone - someone he didn't want to ever have to think about. Jue Di!

    There was nothing similar in the abilities of this swordsman and Jue Di, but it wasn't the ability that reminded it. The similarity lied in the sheer skill, the mastery that bordered on divine. It scared the Paragon. He also thought to his future. For one so young to have so much talent, his Path to Paragon would be a difficult one.

    Yan Ningya's eyes hardened. She had a great deal of confidence in her swordsmanship abilities, no less than her formidable Discipline. She hadn't anticipated that she would be so outclassed.

    She disengaged and reforged her sword once more.

    Jun Yongye didn't follow. His just stared at his weapon. To him, nothing seemed to exist outside of the sword's flashing blade.

    The arena was silent. The audience was as still, and soundless. Most didn't understand what happened, but those with a clue grinned from ear to ear. As for those in the VIP platform, they all watched a quiet, dignified disbelief. What they were seeing couldn't possibly be true.

    The Epochrion's disciple looked like a child before Jun Yongye.

    The Terminator's eyes were more solemn, as though he were thinking about something. Beside him, Mo Xiao sat speechless.

    This man... he's amazing! Could he really be so good as this? Is this the power of perfect simplicity?

    Yan Ningya lifted a hand, and pulled the veil from her face, instantly stopping the peppered conversations that had begun in the crowd.

    What a face! Milky white like flawless jade, with large dark eyes beneath delicate brows. She was a rare beauty.
Previous Index Next