Chapter 83: Forfeit
Translator: Novel Saga Editor: Novel Saga
The pink-attired girl's movements were quick. She shuttled back-and-forth in the ring like a shadow; leaving behind blurred pink afterimages. Lan Feng was proud of her terrific speed. However, it appeared insignificant in comparison to speed of her opponent's movements.
Everyone had anticipated that Lan Feng would be defeated within a couple of moves. But suddenly, a crisp sound of 'jingling' of bells resounded through the plaza. The pink-attired girl became pale as she heard it, and her pace slowed down.
Shi Mu and Bai Shi looked at each other; they knew that Lan Feng had resorted to the power of her Blood.
The pink-attired girl snorted and flicked her hand. Suddenly, several blood-red paper-charms appeared in her hand. Then, they transformed into a layer of red light. This red light enveloped her entire body, and her figure started to look fuzzy. Finally, she transformed into a faint-pink shadow, and whizzed past Lan Feng.
"Plop" a loud sound was heard.
Lan Feng could be seen lying on the ground - unconscious.
Shi Mu shook his head as he saw this; his eyes flickered in an indeterminate manner.
There was only a few months of difference between the 'Hou Tian arts' practice of the new and old disciples. How could it create such a massive disparity between them? Suddenly, the whole picture became clear to him. Now, he was fully aware of the Black Demon Sect's power, and that of the other seven big Sects of the three nations; he had been struck by a new understanding.
Moreover, he realized that the second day's competition was organized by the Sect in order to snatch away the spirit and confidence of the new disciples. This round of the competition was supposed to give them a clear picture. The Sect encouraged competition, but it supported true strength over courage.
These old disciples were low-ranked. Moreover, they seemed to be at the primary stages of the Hou Tian arts. But, there was a huge difference between their strength, and that of the new disciples...
Shi Mu realized that he had little chance of victory even if he were to combine the power of his 'Thirteen Series of Gale Force Blade Art' with his extraordinary physical strength; there was no way that he could be promoted in the ranking list.
Shi Mu made a firm resolve as these thoughts crossed his mind.
Then, three new disciples initiated their challenges, and got defeated by the old disciples in quick succession. However, one of them nearly fought to a draw. But, he lost the match as his Real Qi was inferior to that of the old disciple's.
The new disciples had a dejected look on their faces. But, their spirits got lifted as they saw this. They started to initiate more challenges; so much so that four challenges were simultaneously taking place in four rings.
Xiao Ming couldn't repress his eagerness either. He threw a meaningful glance at Shi Mu and Bai Shi, and strode towards the nearby ring.
He ran for a few steps. Then, he shot-up in the sky and landed in the ring with a determined look on his face. After that, he mentioned the name of the disciple he wanted to challenge; it was the 1300th rank holder.
An obese youth appeared in the ring. Shi Mu's eyes flashed as he saw this.
"Brother Bai, is Brother Xiao a registered magician-practitioner of our Sect?" he turned his head and asked Bai Shi.
"Yes. He took the test and passed. He was detected with three degrees in Fire element Induction force in the Hall of Magic," Bai Shi replied.
Shi Mu nodded as he heard this. It seemed as if he had anticipated this reply.
Xiao Ming's opponent looked sluggish because of his weight. Moreover, Xiao Ming's art focused on utilizing one's flexibility. Therefore, he could restrain his opponent even though he was a magician.
Xiao Ming looked at the obese youth; the fat disciple had already thought of a countermeasure. And, Shi Mu had already guessed the reason.
Jin Huan must've leaked all this information to the fat disciple in advance.
Both the parties greeted each other. Then, the match began. Xiao Ming fixed his eyes on his opponent's movements. Meanwhile, he started to mutter incantations. This stirred-up the magical powers within his body, and they started to take a mysterious form. Then, a gust of scalding-hot air gushed out of his body and spread out like ripples.
Someone in the crowd called-out in alarm.
The complexion of the obese youth changed. A stern look flashed through his eyes as he ferociously stomped his foot on the floor.
"Bang" the entire ring vibrated with a loud sound.
He bounced-up in the air with great force, and threw himself at Xiao Ming like a meteor. He pounded his fists forward; both of them at the same time. Two massive fist-winds burst out with a flash of yellow light; it appeared as if two megaliths were tumbling-down a huge mountain. A fierce and imposing aura rushed out from both sides as his two fists converged into one attack.
Xiao Ming's clothes had started to flutter even though he hadn't yet faced the fist-wind.
Suddenly, Xiao Ming's feet intertwined as he attempted to display the 'Lost Steps' to dodge his opponent's attack. Then, his complexion changed.
He realized that his Real Qi was nothing in comparison to the converging attack of the fierce fist-winds of his opponent. Moreover, he started to find faults with the 'Lost Steps' that he had been practicing.
Xiao Ming gritted his teeth in desperation as he pointed his right index-finger forward. Suddenly, a group of human-head-sized fireballs flashed. They rushed towards the obese youth with great speed. The speed of his attack had increased by-a-third since the last time Shi Mu had seen it.
The obese youth was still midair. He realized that he couldn't evade these fire balls at any cost. Suddenly, that pair of yellow-glowing fists changed into multiple fist-shadows, and collided with the approaching fire balls.
The fire balls exploded midair; their flame spread in all directions. The obese youth was pushed back a few steps by the intense air wave. But, he immediately sprang-up and rushed towards Xiao Ming.
Xiao Ming stopped chanting incantations since his opponent had reached extremely close to him. Then, he started to focus on his Lost-Steps Art. Suddenly, he fluttered backwards - like a fallen leaf - to dodge his opponent's blow.
However, the obese youth didn't give-up; he started to chase Xiao Ming all over the ring.
Xiao Ming understood that he had no choice but to accept defeat because he couldn't beat his opponent. Moreover, he hadn't been able to find any opportunity to use his magic skills. Therefore, he jumped down the ring after being pursued for a while, and admitted his defeat.
Shi Mu let out a soft sigh as he saw this. Then, he turned around and left the plaza.
Several days later...
Shi Mu exhibited "Five Postures towards Heaven" as he practiced the Art of Breeding Heavenly Elephants in his room.
"Excuse me, is Brother Shi Mu inside? I'm here to deliver the reward of the quarterly competition." There were a few rhythmic knocks on his door. Then, the voice of an unfamiliar young man was heard.
A hint of exhilaration flashed through Shi Mu's eyes as he heard this.
He quickly responded, and got out of the bed. He opened the door to find a black-uniformed janitor disciple standing at his door. The disciple had a parcel in his hand.
"I'm Shi Mu. Please give me the parcel," Shi Mu said.
The janitor disciple knew Shi Mu. Therefore, he handed over the parcel to him after a single glance. They exchanged greetings. Then, he turned around and departed.
Shi Mu went inside his room and untied the package. There were two white bottles and fifty thousand silver notes inside it.
Shi Mu was delighted. He opened one of the bottles and sniffed it; it was the Blood-Strengthening Pills.
However, he was more excited about the fifty-thousand silver notes. That was because he was running short on money, and the pills that he required were nearly consumed-up. Therefore, he could use the fifty-thousand silvers to buy Blood-Strengthening and Bone-Tempering pills.
So, he put away the Blood-Strengthening Pills, and walked out towards the shops. He finally returned to his room with huge quantities of pills; he seemed to be in a joyful mood.
It seemed as if he wouldn't need to go out again in the near future.
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1) A meditative posture.