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Thread: A Martial Odyssey

  1. #61
    Senior Member Avidfan's Avatar
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    Mar 2007


    Chapter 16: The Virtuous Palace

    Xiao Shuai began to scan his eyes around the grand hall before he sighed softly, “It seems that she is not here and she has purposely lured us here.”

    Even though his voice was not loud but the crowd could hear it clearly.

    The demure maiden nodded silently.

    Xiao Shuai said, “If I tell you that I am looking for someone here, will you believe me?”

    Gongsun Bai said coldly, “What do you think?”

    Xiao Shuai smiled coldly, “It seems that you are master of this place. Very well, let assume that you are the only one that is fit to talk to me then. Who are you?”

    The numerous pugilists that were eagerly watching the outcome were stunned that he did not know who Gongsun Bai was?

    Gongsun Bai roared with tremendous laughter, “You don’t know who I am?”

    Xiao Shuai said coldly, “You have asked who I am. I have told you. Surely you will return me the courtesy and tell me your name?”

    Gongsun Bai was furious that this old man had actually blatantly declare that he did not know him yet he dare to barge into his domain? In the entire fraternity, even a commoner knows who he was.

    Virtuous Palace or not, there was no one in the entire fraternity that he feared now. Moreover, the Virtuous Palace was a legend and no one had ever seen any protégés from the Virtuous Palace in the fraternity before.

    Gu Tianle and Gongsun Jing immediately shouted, “How atrocious! You don’t even know who Master Gongsun Bai is?!”

    Gu Tianle added, “You must be tired of living already! Let me teach you a lesson! Master Gongsun is the Grand Master of the Honor Manor and you are now in his place. If you do not bow before him, don’t blame me for not warning you!”

    Xiao Shuai hummed coldly before saying, “I have no ill-intention and I am already being extremely tolerant.”

    Gongsun Bai said coldly, “You have no ill-intention and yet you have killed my men?”

    Xiao Shuai laughed aloud, “Don’t be misunderstood. I have merely taught them a lesson. They are still alive.”

    Gongsun Bai asked, “They are alive?”

    Xiao Shuai said, “Really, you can take a look if you want.”

    Gongsun Bai said, “If they are alive, then where are they now?”

    Xiao Shuai said, “If you lose an arm then the pain will be agonizing, am I right? If you are in pain, will you have the strength to do anything else?”

    Gongsun Bai said coldly, “And you are saying you are coming to help the Honor Manor?”

    Xiao Shuai said, “They are rude to me and refuses to allow me to enter the Gongsun Manor even after I have said I am from the Virtuous Palace. Therefore I have to teach them a small lesson.”

    Gongsun Bai said coldly, “Unfortunately, you have already offended the Honor Manor. Do you think I will let you off just like this?”

    Xiao Shuai looked at the pugilists slowly, “It seems that there are so many top exponents here. It seems foolhardy for me to fight against everyone, am I right?”

    All the pugilists began to smile bitterly. In fact many of the pugilists were secretly hoping that this ‘Xiao Shuai’ would help them to teach Gongsun Bai a lesson. It was because under his dominating influence, many of the martial clans had suffered exceedingly.

    Gongsun Bai said coldly, “Is there anyone in the congregation that believes your nonsense?”

    Zuo Tianyi had been looking intently at the demure maiden who was standing beside the wrinkled old man for a long time…

    She had not changed at all.

    She was Ding Yunzi, his distant cousin.

    They were both around the same age.

    He remembered that when Ding Yunzi was just a young girl, she would often visit him with her mother. In time to come, the visits got less and less frequent and turned into a bi-yearly visit. When he was eighteen, her visits had totally stopped all of a sudden…

    And ten years had almost passed since they had last seen each other…

    Each time when she had come, she seemed to hide a terrible sorrow and would often cry alone in the night. He knew because he had secretly eavesdropped outside her room.

    Even though everyone had called him a prodigy swordsman but it was not entirely the truth.

    It was because many of his improvements were attributed to her.

    She would secretly impart to him several sword techniques and corrected his sword strokes so that he would be able to improve. He had no idea how she had acquainted her sword skills and she had never discussed it.

    In his heart, she was his little protégé mistress and the very reason why he was always training day in and night out so that one day, he would proudly be able to demonstrate his skills to her and earned her praise.

    He sworn that one day, he would be her protector and dreamed of the day that she would be his wife…

    But that day had never come because she had suddenly disappeared from the face of the earth.

    He would often ask his grandfather on her whereabouts and her origins but the Old Sword Saint would shake his head and said, “She is in a faraway place.”

    When he asked his grandfather when he was twenty-two that he would find her and bring her back as his wife, his grandfather flew into a rage and scolded him, “With your puny skills, do you think you are able to reach that immoral place alive? You have better forget her, the sooner the better!”

    He replied coldly, “I have nothing to fear…”

    Before he could finish, the Old Sword Saint had slapped him hard and rebuked him sharply, “That is an immoral place and she is an immoral woman. Do not ever mention her in front of me, ever again!”

    He had tried to enquiry others on her whereabouts but no one was willing to tell him. Finally an elder had secretly told him, “That place is a fearsome place and one of the martial holy grounds of the martial fraternity. No one really knows where it is. If you want to go there, you have to be as good as the Sword Saint. Otherwise you will really die there.”

    He had never forgotten her; she was the only reason for his existence and the reason why he pushed himself so hard. He was lonely, very lonely…

    It was only when he was practicing his sword, could he feel her presence and of the times that they were together.

    He could only mutter now, “Is that really you? I have grown old yet you look exactly the same as ten years ago…”

    When Ji Lingfeng saw Zuo Tianyi looking intently at the demure maiden, she began to recall the time when she was alone with him a year ago…

    She had asked him, “Why are you closing your eyes? Are you shy or are you blind? Or you are despising me because I am from the unorthodox sect?”

    Zuo Tianyi opened his eyes and smiled, “None of the above.”

    Ji Lingfeng asked coldly, “Hmph, then why are you not looking at me?”

    Zuo Tianyi sighed and he seemed to look at a faraway place, “If only you are her…”

    Ji Lingfeng asked coolly, “So you already have a sweetheart. Who is she?”

    Zuo Tianyi began to tremble as he said, “She is someone that I will never see again in my entire life…”

    Ji Lingfeng looked at the demure maiden and thought, “She is the one that Zuo Tianyi is longing for?”

    Her thoughts were interrupted when Gongsun Bai roared mightily and everyone could feel his martial power. He began to take a step forward and immediately, the stone flooring beneath him began to crack!

    Gongsun Bai had just attained a new level in his Invincible Divine Force and he was lamenting of an opponent to test his new martial power.

    And this old man here may be a suitable target for him!

    In front of the pugilists today, he was going to demonstrate his martial power and to awestruck them so that none of them would go against him in the future.

    Xiao Shuai said, “What a mighty martial power! Is this the Invincible Divine Force?”

    Gongsun Bai replied coldly, “That’s right!”

    Xiao Shuai said, “This skill needs at least sixty years of martial power to even begin to start practicing and it is an extremely difficult to learn but powerful skill. Even if you train day and night, most people will not be able to go past the basics even when they are sixty. And you have reached the advance stage already. Very Impressive!”

    Gongsun Bai said, “Indeed. This skill has many difficulties...”

    Xiao Shuai replied, “And it is incomplete too.”

    Gongsun snarled, “How do you know?”

    Xiao Shuai hummed coldly, “It is not only incomplete and dangerous to practice too. I know because the Invincible Divine Force that you have is a copy from the Virtuous Palace!”

    The pugilists began to rumble among themselves.

    Xiao Shuai simply added, “The Virtuous Palace deliberately left it in the central plains thirty years ago. I didn’t expect that you are actually its new owner. How on earth did you manage to decipher it when so many of us had failed? This is so interesting.”

    Gongsun Bai refused to answer him because there were many other pugilists in the grand hall. And moreover this old man knew that a fight was forthcoming and the two of them were actually maneuvering for the best advantage.

    The one that helped him to decipher and added to the intricate formula of the Invincible Divine Force was Shui Yichi, the wife of Yi Tianxing. He hated Yi Tianxing for having such a good wife when he should be the one that she ought to marry.

    He glanced at Yi Ping briefly with his murderous intent.

    Gongsun Bai said, “You are not weak either, judging by your martial power when you throw the sword.”

    Indeed, the two of them had peak their martial power. A decisive win would depend on their true skills and techniques.

    Gongsun Bai said, “But today, you will surely die here. I will not allow another person to undermine my authority and will not tolerate anyone to be a threat to me.”

    Xiao Shuai looked solemnly at him, “Is that so?”

    Gongsun Bai said, “When top exponents duel with one another, besides martial power and techniques, the human factor and the timing are also an important factor.”

    Xiao Shuai shifted slightly, “That is right!”

    Gongsun Bai said, “We are almost equal in martial power and strength. I have the full support of the congregation and that is the human factor. I can attack you with no fear of hesitation but you can’t. This is my domain and I have the timing. Timing, Terrain and human factor, which one have you got?”

    Xiao Shuai lowered his gaze before saying, “Indeed, I have none of it.”

    Gongsun Bai said coldly, “If you bow to me, I may consider sparing your life.”

    Xiao Shuai hummed coldly, “You are asking an old man that is twenty-years your senior to bow to you?”

    Gongsun Bai laughed, “Everyone bows to me in the fraternity and you are no exception!”

    Yi Ping had regained some of his conscious and strength. He was clenching his fists in rage at Gongsun Bai’s arrogance.

    Xiao Shuai said coldly, “So if I don’t, you will surely kill me. So will the pugilists all attack me at the same time or you will?”

    Gongsun Bai laughed, “You don’t have to go around in circles. I am looking for a good fight. It is too easy to crash you by asking others to do so. But I want to let the whole fraternity to know this; anyone that dares to offend me will rue the day they are born! I will let them die in the most painful manner.”

    Venerable Master Deng Zhong, the Head Abbot of the Monument Monastery immediately muttered, “Merciful Buddha!”

    Many of the orthodox clans were silent. No one dared to mutter anything against Gongsun Bai out of fear.

    Xiao Shuai said, “When I fight with others, my disciple will fight side by side with me…”

    The demure maiden shook her head in panic and took several steps backward!

    Gu Tianle interrupted and raised his voice angrily, “You cunning old man! Two versus one? You really know how to take advantage. Then you don’t mind that I take a part too?”

    Xiao Shuai smiled bitterly, “I really don’t mind. It is my style to fight in pair.”

    Gongsun Bai looked at the attractive demure maiden and smiled, “If she is not afraid of getting killed, then she can join in. I will hate to kill someone like her. More hands don’t mean more advantage.”

    The less confident his opponent had, the higher his odds of winning!

    Gongsun Bai said, “What is your weapon?”

    Xiao Shuai said coldly, “My sword of course. What about yours?”

    Gongsun Bai smiled, “With my bare hands. I have stopped using a weapon ten years ago. As long as the weapon is my heart, I can kill.”

    Xiao Shuai exclaimed aloud, “That is the extraordinary martial stage of without a weapon in your hand and having a weapon in the heart. You have attained that stage?”

    Gongsun Bai replied proudly, “That is right.”

    The pugilists presented were awestruck. It was because even though many pugilists understood that principle but few people could really reach that level of attainment. Only a few super exponents like Gongsun Bai, Gu Tianle, Jue Yuan and the Celestial Fairy could possibly reach that stage.

    Even the Sword Saint who was highly acclaimed for his martial prowess did not reach that level of attainment…

    Xiao Shuai sighed, “It seems that I have met a formidable opponent today. Yunzi, fetch me my sword.”

    Now the pugilists knew that her name was Yunzi.

    She walked unhurriedly to the beautifully adorned long sword that was thrust into the ground, pulled it out before walking back to her protégé master and handing the long sword back to him.

    Some of the pugilists were secretly jeering at Xiao Shuai. They were cursing, “He had denied that he was the one that threw the long sword and now he was asking for his sword. What a joke!”

    The demure maiden began to distance herself from Xiao Shuai by walking all the way to the entrance!

    Xiao Shuai looked annoyed and sighed, “Nowadays, even my own disciple cannot be trusted. In times of crisis, each is on their own.”

    Gongsun Bai said coldly, “Are you done yet?”

    Xiao Shuai brandished his long sword, “I'm ready!”

    Gongsun Bai immediately raised his martial power and charged at Xiao Shuai!

    That Gongsun Bai could raise his martial power in such a short time astonished the pugilists presented!

    Xiao Shuai immediately swung his sword in a circular movement and thrown it towards the charging Gongsun Bai!

    The flying sword sped like lightning and flew towards Gongsun Bai! This was the exact flying sword technique that everyone had seen earlier!

    The flying sword was filled with extraordinary powerful martial power as it sped towards Gongsun Bai!

    Even though this flying sword was startling fast, it was simple too straightforward and it was all too easy for Gongsun Bai to dodge it!

    As soon as Gongsun Bai evaded the attack and charged towards Xiao Shuai again, the flying sword struck the wall behind Gongsun Bai and rebounded again with a startling force towards him again!

    Gongsun Bai hummed coldly; this was just a small nuisance to him.

    He simply raised his right hand and used his famous Ironclad Claw Skill with the full martial power of his Invincible Divine Force.

    As soon the flying sword flew back towards him and impacted onto his right hand, it was deflected and dropped onto the ground!

    Gongsun Bai was now in front of Xiao Shuai and was exchanging blows with him!

    They were exchanging blows so fast that the pugilists could only see their body being stationary but their hands and legs were just shades of shadow!

    Gongsun Bai was heard saying, “It is no use. Nothing can penetrate my Invincible Divine Force!”

    To prove his point, he no longer defended against Xiao Shuai attacks once he had gauged the strength of his martial power!

    Xiao Shuai attacks had landed on him harmlessly!

    Gongsun Bai laughed coldly and said, “Now you will die…”

    But before he could finish, Xiao Shuai had smashed through his Invincible Divine Force, not once but several times on several parts of his body, including his head and face!

    Both Yi Ping and Ji Lingfeng gasped to themselves, “That is the Penetrating Hands?!”

    Gongsun Bai was momentary stunned and startled…

    He had not sense any martial power increase coming from Xiao Shuai and yet when he was struck, it seemed that Xiao Shuai attacking strength had increased several folds!

    Just when he was about to step backward…

    At this moment of time, the demure maiden had silently drew her sword and had whirled it in a circular movement around her more than a dozen times in less than a split second and had sent her long sword flying towards Gongsun Bai!

    Qiu Wufeng was famous for his silent swordplay and was given the fraternity name of Windless Swordsman. He was proud of his fraternity name. No one else would attack as silently as him.

    But this demure and attractive maiden, she had actually drawn out her long sword so silently and so quickly that it was unbelievable!

    If he had not witnessed it personal himself, he would never have believed it!

    He was not the only one that was staring in disbelief, the rest of the pugilists that had noticed it were staring in complete disbelief!

    Qiu Wufeng and Nangong Le had noticed it because they were looking at her lecherously! They were thinking if this Xiao Shuai had died, then this poor maiden would suffer a terrible fate and it would be a great pity should that happened. So they were looking at her and watching her expressions. But all of a sudden, she had brandish out her long sword…

    And her flying sword too, was filled with martial power as it sped towards Gongsun Bai!

    In that split second, she had brandished her long sword, whirled it more than a dozen times and sent it flying towards Gongsun Bai in the same second!

    Her flying sword flew with startling speed between Gongsun Bai and Xiao Shuai!

    Gongsun Bai still had his arms extending in front when he was suddenly struck multiple times by Xiao Shuai!

    So when her flying sword flew across between them, it sliced off the arms of Gongsun Bai!

    Gongsun Bai yelled aloud in pain as blood from his arm came rushing forth in all directions as Xiao Shuai leapt backward!

    While he was still yelling in pain, the flying sword rebounded against the hall pillar and back towards him again, cutting off his head!

    When her sword had cut off Gongsun Bai’s head, it continued on its path and back into the hands of the demure maiden who whirled the long sword again, cleaning its blade from the blood stains before she sheathed it back into her scabbard!

    All these happened so fast that no one was able to react to what was happening!

    This quiet, seemingly innocent and attractive maiden was actually a top exponent! It just did not match her age and image!

    The numerous pugilists of the various sects and clans were stunned into silence! Gongsun Bai, the most powerful man in the entire fraternity was now a dead man! He had died very quickly but in great agony…

    Gongsun Jing had immediately fainted on the spot when he witnessed his father’s death and several protégés of the Honor Manor began to crowd around him panicky to check on his condition.

    Xiao Shuai had picked up his long sword as he said, “It is still safer to have a weapon in the hands. Alas, he is all talk and no substance. Martial skills, timing, terrain and human factor, I have none but yet I have won?”

    He muttered to himself, “If you have the patience to practice for another twenty years, then maybe you would be truly invincible.”

    No one could really understand how this mysterious old man and maiden could bypass Gongsun Bai’s Invincible Divine Force!

    No one else but Yi Ping! He had personally witnessed the martial power of the Penetrating Hand! When the Penetrating Hand had breached the Invincible Divine Force, Gongsun Bai’s martial power had dropped considerably that even the demure maiden’s flying sword could slice through his arms…

    Yi Ping wondered if Gongsun Bai still had his Invincible Divine Force at its full martial power, would he still be able to deflect her first flying sword strike? He could still remember how hard his sword arm had trembled after he had used his full martial power to deflect the flying sword earlier…

    Then it suddenly occurred to Yi Ping that this old man was trying to conceal his Penetrating Hands from the eyes of the onlookers and created an illusion that a sneak attack had been made by the demure maiden! It seemed that they had planned it right from the very start…

    Zuo Tianyi too was stunned.

    Her sword strength was even more powerful than him even after so many years had passed?

    Yi Ping could not resist laughing coldly, “Good! Gongsun Bai is dead!”

    Xiao Shuai said coldly, “Let’s us go. There is nothing that interests us here.”

    Gu Tianle had stepped forward in rage, “Do you think the Honor Manor will let you off so lightly after what you have done? How despicable are you! There are two of you against one. Where is the martial justice?”

    Xiao Shuai laughed coldly, “Are you deaf? Right from the start, Gongsun Bai had said he had agreed to fight the two of us together.”

    He paused for a while before adding, “He deserved to die because he was too suspicious. I have already warned him that the sword was hurled by my disciple but alas, he did not believe me. If he had believed me, he wouldn’t be killed.”

    He began to turn back and walked slowly towards the entrance.

    Gu Tianle began to shout, “Everyone, get him together! Avenge for Master Gongsun!”

    But no one dared to move and was looking at one another for leadership.

    Some of the pugilists were even thinking; if they were to all charge at the duo and if they suddenly throw their flying swords at them, would they be able to evade from it with so many people pushing around them?

    There were many pugilists that were even thinking; so that was how they had thrown the sword and it could fly just like that? They were all thinking of trying it as soon as they got the chance. However, they did not know that the secret technique to turn it into a flying sword was more complex that it appeared. Without knowing the secret techniques to do so, it was just a futile and clumsy try.

    Gu Tianle looked at everyone. They had never disobeyed the Honor Manor before. The minute Gongsun Bai had died, everyone seemed to have rebel!

    Gu Tianle shouted again, “Avenge for Master Gongsun!”

    Venerable Master Deng Zhong responded, “Merciful Buddha.”

    That was the only response so far!

    All of a sudden, Yi Ping had freed himself from the embracing support of Ji Lingfeng and stepped forward as he trembled uncontrollably!

    Yi Ping raised his voice, “Maiden, hold your steps!”

    Was this maiden the one that had killed his wife?

    Zuo Tianyi was surprised that Yi Ping still had the strength to move as he thought, “Is he human? There are so many deep slashes on him and his wounds are still bleeding…”

    Yi Ping shouted again, “Do you know me or been to the Heavenly Mountains before?”

    The demure maiden turned back and took a glance at him before she replied simply, “No. I have never been there before.”

    Yi Ping was startled and he thought, “No, that is impossible. It has to be her. But her voice is different…”

    She seemingly looked at everyone. But she was actually looking intently at Zuo Tianyi and Yi Ping before she disappeared from sight.

    Just when Yi Ping was about to go after her, Gu Tianle had immediately confronted Yi Ping and said, “They can leave but not you. You have insulted our Master and who knows, you may be in cahoots with them. If I let you go off just like that, how am I going to account to all the heroes that are here?”

    Ji Lingfeng was besides Yi Ping in an instant as she said coldly, “You are the so call Warrior-God of the martial fraternity? Just a few minutes ago, you are like a lamb when they are still here. The minute that they had vanished from sight, you are like a lion. You are really a coward!”

    Yi Ping was worried for Ji Lingfeng as he knew that sometimes she could not mince her words, so he added icily, “He is only capable of bullying the weak. Where was he when Gongsun Bai got killed? If he is really not a coward, he would have confronted that Xiao Shuai just a minute ago!”

    The pugilists began to turn and murmured to one another. All of a sudden, the grand hall became very incessantly noisy!

    Gu Tianle was enraged; he raised his martial power and attacked Yi Ping with the ‘Ultrapowerful Hand Force’! A seemingly unstoppable force began to hurl itself onto Yi Ping as he shouted, “Don’t be too haughty, young man! There is always a sky above a sky!”

    Yi Ping raised his right palm to meet the incoming blow!

    Even as Yi Ping had mustered all his remaining strength to accept the incoming blow, Ji Lingfeng was even more agile and had flown past him to intercept the blow on his behalf!

    She had raised all her martial power in her right palm and she had clashed headlong with Gu Tianle!

    When the pugilists saw that, many in the crowd began to shake their heads and many had already imagined that the young maiden would die instantly on the spot!

    There was a huge thunderous clap in that instant and true to the predictions of the pugilists, Ji Lingfeng spit out blood as she flew backwards and fell onto the ground!

    In that instant, Ji Lingfeng had used the Holy Amalgamate Skill and had gathered all her martial power into that one blow! But Gu Tianle’s Ultrapowerful Force Hand was simply too powerful and she was seriously injured in just one clash!

    Gu Tianle’s palm began to tremble as he shouted angrily, “You are from the Holy Hex Sect?”

    The pugilists were startled. This young maiden was from the Holy Hex Sect?

    The Holy Hex Sect was now the leader of the various Unorthodox Clans and also the enemy of the Orthodox Fraternity!

    In that clash of blows, Gu Tianle could feel the martial power drain in his palm! The Holy Amalgamate Skill was one of those few martial skills that could cause a draining effect. Luckily, his opponent martial power was much weaker than him and the drain effect had only a minor effect on him.

    Ji Lingfeng smiled weakly on the ground, “Yi Ping, don’t worry about me. I will be alright. Run please…”

    Nangong Le wanted to rush to help Ji Lingfeng but his chest was hurting. He was also afraid of Gu Tianle and the rest of the pugilists...

    When Yi Ping saw how badly Ji Lingfeng was injured as she fought to defend him, his entire body was filled with burning rage!

    He immediately attacked Gu Tianle, using all his remaining strength with the Asper Horizon Hand!

    Gu Tianle was not slow to react and had mustered his Ultrapowerful Force Hand again!

    With that, their palms clashed against one another and there was a huge thunderclap!

    Gu Tianle was pushed back five steps and as he stumbled back, he quickly lifted a breath of vital energy and steadied himself!

    Yi Ping was pushed seven steps back and he was coughing a lot of blood!

    The orthodox pugilists were stunned. A seriously injured young person like Yi Ping could actually withstand a blow from Gu Tianle and still stood, it was indeed a miracle!

    Even Qiu Wufeng and Zuo Tianyi thought, “This young man, he can still stand? Is he made of steel?”

    Ji Lingfeng was in tears as she said to herself, “No good! He has already been injured in the earlier clash with Jue Yuan and Zuo Tianyi. His breathing has not recovered yet and now he has exerted himself further.”

    Gu Tianle said, “Young man, it is wiser for you to surrender!”

    Yi Ping replied angrily, “I will not give up…” His eyes had now turned red and his entire body was now trembling.

    The crowd was stunned that he could still stand on the ground. It was obvious to the pugilists that Yi Ping was now in a daze judging from his blood shot eyes and from the amount of blood that he had coughed out!

    Gu Tianle said, “Very well, I shall grant your very wish and sent you to the maker with a blow!” Once again, he charged at Yi Ping with his hand forward.

    This time, Gu Tianle had decided to use all his martial power.

    Yi Ping laughed coldly, “You think that I dare not?” He mustered all his strength and displayed the Asper Horizon Hand!

    Ji Lingfeng cried out, “Yi Ping! Don’t force yourself!” It was because when the practitioner vital energy was not in harmony, especially after sustaining internal injuries, further use of the Asper Horizon Hand or any skill that required martial power would only add on to the injuries!

    Moreover this was already the third time that Yi Ping had used the Asper Horizon Hand without any respites!

    Again, there was a thunderous explosive impact when both palms met! The windforce created by the impact was so strong many of the pugilists could barely stand still!

    Gu Tianle took three steps back and coughed out blood!

    Yi Ping took three steps back too! But he had turned extremely pale in appearance and was not moving!

    Gu Tianle and the rest of the pugilists were stunned as they thought, “Is he not human? Why didn’t he fall yet?”

    The very old pugilists knew that when a person was closed to death, their last vital breath was actually the most powerful and this Yi Ping had used up all his martial power!

    Ji Lingfeng knew instantly that something had happened to Yi Ping!

    Before anyone could react, she dived forward towards Gu Tianle and attacked him!

    Gu Tianle immediately raised his hand again and thought, “This young maiden still have the strength to stand?”

    When he saw the wavering images of her incoming hand, he was startled and mustered all his martial power! This was because the young maiden had just displayed the Asper Horizon Hand too and he could not afford to be careless as he thought, “She knows the Asper Horizon Hand too?”

    Even before the pugilists could steady themselves, there was yet another thunderous clap that sent everyone moving backward again!

    Gu Tianle was seen moving five steps backward and coughing out blood!

    Like the Asper Horizon Hand, even though the Ultrapowerful Force Hand was an epitome powerful attack skill, it was too powerful and the practitioners of such a deadly attacking skill would risk overextending themselves. Gu Tianle had used it consecutively four times in a row and the backlash for overextending was severe internal injuries!

    Ji Lingfeng stumbled onto the ground again and her face turned extremely pale!

    But before Gu Tianle and the rest of the pugilists even knew what was happening, she had suddenly picked herself up again!

    She grabbed Yi Ping and both quickly disappeared over the high walls of the Gongsun Residence in an instant!

    As if Yi Ping extraordinary endurance was not astounding enough, many of the pugilists were further amazed at her extraordinary swiftness movement skill! They had never seen anyone vanished from sight this fast!

    Ch16 End
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    Last edited by Avidfan; 11-07-14 at 09:26 PM.

  2. #62
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    Jul 2009
    British Columbia


    wow!!! more more more!

  3. #63
    Senior Member Avidfan's Avatar
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    Mar 2007


    Quote Originally Posted by Sjohnb View Post
    Thank you for the update. This is a brilliant chapter.
    Thanks Sjohnb for your first post! Really touch you choose to post your first post on this thread.

    Thanks Nexon and everyone else that reading the story here, yes, very thank you once again =))))

  4. #64
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    Thanks for another exciting chapter. Can't wait to read chapter 17.

  5. #65
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    Apr 2013


    Wow!! Eagerly anticipating the next chapter. This story has some really cool martial arts.

  6. #66
    Senior Member
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    Jun 2013


    Dear Avidfan.

    All these epitome skills manifesting at this juncture makes me drool with anticipation of the next update. As Msia has a long weekend can I plead with you for another update soonest? Will your update show them looking for refuge in the garden courtyard where his wife is now residing? TQVM.

  7. #67
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    Yi Ping's wife & the twins probably are furious with him for finding a replacement for his wife so quickly after her supposed death. They probably don't mind seeing him receiving some punishment.

  8. #68
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    Did Yi Ping's wife saved him or was it the demure maiden? Anxiously waiting for the answer...

  9. #69
    Senior Member Avidfan's Avatar
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    Mar 2007


    Thanks everyone and thanks for waiting =)

    Quote: szfong
    [Did Yi Ping's wife saved him or was it the demure maiden? Anxiously waiting for the answer...]

    Chapter 18 will reveal the answers =)

  10. #70
    Senior Member Avidfan's Avatar
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    Mar 2007


    Chapter 17: The Secret Celestial Group

    Xiao Shuai said to Ding Yunzi, “She is not here.”

    Ding Yunzi asked, “Could she be in that another location?”

    Xiao Shuai said, “No matter what, we must leave this town as soon as possible.”

    Ding Yunzi asked, “Master, you are injured?”

    Xiao Shuai shook his head, “But I have expended a great deal of my martial power. If there is another opponent like Gongsun Bai here, I cannot fight at my peak.”

    Ding Yunzi said coolly, “There shouldn’t be anyone that can contest with Master. If she is not here, surely she could be in that another location? That is the most suspicious location after all. We should investigate it.”

    Xiao Shuai said, “I have a very uneasy feeling about that villa. I don’t have that feeling for a very long time. Call it instinct if you want but sometimes we need to know our limits and be extra vigilant. That Gongsun Bai had thought that he was invincible and became careless. If he had been more wary, the final outcome would be hard to predict.”

    Ding Yunzi said, “Master, you are too caution. At your martial level, no one is your match anymore. Even without me, you can still defeat Gongsun Bai on your own.”

    Xiao Shuai said, “You are too young. Even an invincible fighter will have a moment of weakness and if the enemies have the heart to kill you, they will have already studied your weakness. That is why we mustn’t reveal too much of our true skills to gain the best advantage in every situation.”

    Ding Yunzi said, “But there are only two young maidens in that villa. Surely, we have nothing to fear from them.”

    Xiao Shuai said, “Precisely that is why. There are too many unanswered questions about that villa. It is like they are enticing us to enter the villa.”

    Ding Yunzi sighed, “If I can be within three hundred paces of that villa, I may be able to know if Xiao Youxue is there…”

    Xiao Shuai said solemnly, “Five hundred paces is the safe distance. Anything closer than that, we risk exposing our whereabouts.”

    All of a sudden, Xiao Shuai looked at the forested surroundings and sighed. “Just as I feared, they are here.”

    Ding Yunzi scanned the surroundings and immediately she said aloud, “There!”

    She immediately unsheathed her long sword, whirled it several times and threw it as a flying sword in front of her!

    Her flying sword flew into the dark recess of the forest and there was a mighty jarring sound as her flying sword struck against something metallic.

    Ding Yunzi had extended her fingers out and to her surprise; her flying sword did not rebound back. It had simply vanished.

    Xiao Shuai looked intently at the direction that she had thrown her flying sword and said, “They are still there and they are no ordinary opponents…”

    Ding Yunzi immediately raised her scabbard in front of her in a defensive posture as she raised her fingers into the sword fingers stance. Even without a sword in her hands, she could still kill with her fingers and scabbard alone!

    Two lookalike young maidens appeared from view out from the forest and walked very slowly towards them.

    They were in black velvet silk dresses. Their black dresses were almost translucent and their faces were very white in contrast to their dressing. In their hands, they had brandished their long swords.

    Xiao Shuai immediately brandished his long sword, whirled it in a circular motion and threw it towards them!

    He said aloud, “I will like to see how you can deflect my flying sword!”

    His flying sword flew and burst with startling speed against them!

    The two young maidens immediately raised their long swords in front of them and when the flying sword struck their swords with a mighty impact; it was mysterious seized by another circular force as it spins in a reverse direction before dropping to the ground!

    The two young maidens had taken three steps back as they displayed the Divine Emerald Skill with their long swords as they finally deflected the mighty force of the flying sword!

    Xiao Shuai muttered, “These two young maidens have the martial power to withstand my flying sword directly?”

    But even before they could steady their footing, Xiao Shuai and Ding Yunzi had immediately saw an opening as they filled their scabbard with their martial power and sent it flying towards the two young maidens at the same time!

    The two young maidens gasped at the same time, “Oh no…”

    It was because their opponents had seized the opportunity to launch another attack at the same time even before they could steady themselves. They had never fought against opponents that would react with such astonishing speed!

    But to the surprise of Xiao Shuai and Ding Yunzi, just when their scabbards were about to strike their targets, another young maiden had appeared in front of the beautiful twins and deflected their scabbards to the other direction with her sleeve!

    This newcomer was very beautiful and had the grace of a goddess. It was as though she was not from this mortal realm. Even Xiao Shuai who prided himself on his willpower was somehow moved by her sight…

    It was not her unearthly beauty that caused Xiao Shuai and Ding Yunzi to be taken aback but they were startled at how easy she had deflected their scabbards!

    It was because their flying scabbard technique was also one of their martial clan most powerful secret techniques and was even more powerful than their flying sword technique!

    Even though their flying scabbards were a straightforward attack, it was charged with their entire martial power and deflecting it was even harder than their flying swords. Much of their martial power was lost when the flying sword was spinning. But for their flying scabbards, the martial power retention rate was much higher and it was three times as fast!

    Moreover they had thrown their flying scabbards at the same time. Deflecting one of their flying scabbards was difficult enough and moreover there were two…

    And this young maiden from nowhere had simply deflected their flying scabbards with just her sleeve…

    When Xiao Shuai had recovered from his initial surprise and looked at her face, he was even more startled even as Ding Yunzi analyzed coolly, “They are using a secret technique that is similar to the Invincible Divine Force. No one can deflect our secret techniques with just their martial power alone and if I am not wrong, they are using the Emerald Divine Skill, the nemesis skill of all missile projectiles. And in this fraternity, only the Eternal Ice Palace knows this secret skill.”

    Ding Yunzi had raised her right hand and moved her little finger slightly. As soon as Xiao Shuai nodded, she would attack again with another secret technique of the Virtuous Palace!

    The newcomer was indeed Shui Yixian the Celestial Fairy. The two young maidens at her back were Shui Yujian the Jade Sword Fairy and Shui Meijian the Beautiful Sword Fairy.

    The Celestial Fairy nodded slightly and said, “Your analysis is correct. We are indeed from the Eternal Ice Palace. Only the Virtuous Palace is capable of using the Flying Sword Technique. It seems that this battle between the Eternal Ice Palace and the Virtuous Palace is inevitable.”

    Ding Yunzi said coolly, “If you think that we are weaponless and defenseless, you are making a great mistake…”

    Shui Meijian interrupted coldly, “Oh yes? The Penetrating Hands, the Penetrating Slash Technique, the Virtuous Divine Force, the Golden Impervious Skill…right, I am so afraid.”

    Shui Yujian smiled. She knew that her sister was purposely provoking her opponent. She immediately took a deep breath as she amplified her senses with the Dual Inertness Intricacy, a skill that she had newly acquired.

    Ding Yunzi turned pale as she asked, “How did you know?”

    Shui Yujian had immediately sensed that the heartbeat of this maiden had increased and she was nervous now. She blinked at Shui Meijian, hinting her of the information.

    Xiao Shuai sighed deeply, “It is because I am the one that leak it…”

    Ding Yunzi was shocked as she asked, “Master? You told the Eternal Ice Palace our secret techniques?”

    The Celestial Fairy begun to look at Xiao Shuai closely, “You are Brother Shuai?”

    Xiao Shuai laughed and he began to tremble, “Indeed I am. Sister Xian’Er, you have not really changed at all…I almost couldn’t recognize you all these years. Or rather, you have become more and more beautiful. How long have it been now? Fifty years? I have never known that you are from the Eternal Ice Palace or else I would surely look for you there…”

    The Celestial Fairy averted her eyes, “I didn’t know you are from the Virtuous Palace as well…”

    Shui Yujian, Shui Meijian and Ding Yunzi were stunned that their protégé mistress and master had actually knew each other!

    Ding Yunzi was even more startled, “This young maiden is actually the same age as my protégé master?! But she looks so young…” She began to look at Shui Meijian and Shui Yujian who looked equally young as well…

    Xiao Shuai laughed bitterly, “Fate plays a cruel joke on all of us. Where is Han Shaodong? Are you together with him now?”

    The Celestial Fairy shifted uncomfortably as she said, “The last time that I had seen him was also the last time that I had seen you.”

    Xiao Shuai laughed, “That is good news to me. You have left so suddenly that day…”

    Ding Yunzi had never seen her protégé master laughed so merrily before.

    Fifty years ago, a group of pugilists were all that were left from the aftermath of a bloody battle over a lost martial treasure trove. The survivors of that bloody aftermath were all above average pugilists. The reasons that they had survived were because they were not as greedy as the others or because they were smarter.

    It was because the underground palace ruins that they had found had too many deadly traps and many had died.

    Han Shaodong looked at the nine remaining pugilists; Xiao Shuai and Shui Yixian were among the group as well. He said in disbelief, “We risk our lives for just one small flask and some copper coins?”

    Xiao Shuai said, “If you don’t want that flask, you can give it to me. Maybe the pills in the flask are worth more than anyone of you think it is.”

    Han Shaodong laughed and he tossed the flask to him, “I will not have the courage to eat some unknown pills. They can be poison you know.”

    Xiao Shuai laughed, “Or miraculous pills you know.”

    Shui Yixian smiled softly, “So what are we going to do now? Continue the fight that some of us have left unfinished earlier?”

    Xiao Shuai turned and looked at everyone, “It is a coincidental that we have all survived until this point and yet at the same time, we are all reluctant to reveal our true identities. We may not be friends as we may come from over all the fraternity and even the names that we use may be faked. But let us introduce ourselves anyway. You can call me Brother Shuai, Shuai being handsome!”

    Shui Yixian laughed softly as she covered her mouth with her hands, “Hello Handsome!”

    Xiao Shuai laughed, “Beauty, now it is your turn to introduce yourself. I am sure everyone would like to know your name. I had seen you kicking the asses of so many pugilists during the past week. Everyone seems eager to know your name.”

    Shui Yixian looked at everyone and she started to stammer, “I…err…Yixian…no…you can call me Xian’Er.”

    Everyone thought it was funny. It seemed like she was not an experienced liar and everyone secretly made a quick mental note to remember her real name.

    Han Shaodong said, “I am just a nameless nobody in the fraternity. I am not from the orthodox clans or from the unorthodox clans. My name is Han Shaodong.”

    Another young pugilist said, “That is right. Today, no matter where we are from, we should be friends. Actually for us orthodox clans, it is quite disgraceful for others to know we are fighting over a fraternity treasure…”

    Han Shaodong said, “You just tell us that you are from the orthodox clan.”

    The young pugilist was startled and he looked embarrassed.

    Han Shaodong assured him, “Don’t worry. We will not force you to tell us your clan of origin. I am sure many of us here are also not using their clan skills too.”

    The young pugilist said, “You can call me ‘Future Sword Saint’. That will be my fraternity name.”

    Everyone laughed.

    Another pugilist said, “Great aspiration! You can call me ‘The Invincible Ironfist’!”

    Another young pugilist said, “You can call me Tian Kui!”

    When all the pugilists had finished introducing themselves, Xiao Shuai said. “Let us form a secret group and do something crazy for a while. We should at least do something that is earthshaking in the fraternity.”

    Han Shaodong asked, “What do you propose?”

    Xiao Shuai said, “We need a leader of course. But if anyone wants to back off now, they can do it now. When the secret group is formed, we must be bound by our agreements. What does everyone think?”

    The Invincible Ironfist smiled, “If Sister Xian’Er is in the group, I will join for sure.”

    Shui Yixian stammered, “When did I become your sister?”

    The Invincible Ironfist laughed merrily, “If you are in the group, then you naturally will be our Sister Xian’Er.”

    The Future Sword Saint added hastily, “If she is in, I will be in the group too.”

    Han Shaodong said to Shui Yixian solemnly, “What do you think?”

    Shui Yixian looked at everyone one by one. She could tell from their passionate eyes that they were all waiting for her to say yes to the idea.

    Shui Yixian sighed and said, “Do I even have a choice?”

    The idea of a secret group intrigues everyone!

    Xiao Shuai said, “Excellent! Now we need to select a leader from among us or else we be a pile of loose sands. We also need to be bound by our holistic agreement on never to reveal our identities and what we have done in this group. Does everyone agree with it?”

    The Future Sword Saint said, “We must never kill the innocents too or go against the martial righteousness.”

    The Invincible Ironfist said, “We should really restraint from harming anyone. But as for martial righteousness, we already broken that protocol or else we wouldn’t be here.”

    Xiao Shuai said, “Agree! Unless someone really wants us dead or else we must not kill anyone needlessly.”

    Everyone nodded eagerly and was eager to know what exactly Xiao Shuai planned to do.

    Han Shaodong said, “It seems that you are our candidate for the group leadership. Anyone else want to be the group leader? I am all for Brother Shuai to be the group leader.”

    The Invincible Ironfist said, “I nominate Xian’Er of course!”

    Everyone looked at the Invincible Ironfist in shocked horror.

    Tian Kui said, “What if she wants us to go up to the Heavenly Mountains to pick the Heavenly Mountain Lotus and other trivial things?”

    Shui Yixian sighed softly, “Don’t you worry about that part. That will be the last thing in my mind.”

    It seemed that Han Shaodong, Xiao Shuai and Shui Yixian got the most number of votes. In the end, Xiao Shuai was nominated the group leader.

    Xiao Shuai said, “We must show great unity in the show of adversity. Only then can our group be the most feared and powerful in the fraternity.”

    To prove his point, he took out a chopstick and broke it into halve. “If we are individual, our fates will be the same as this lone chopstick and will be easy to break by others.”

    Next he took out a bunch of chopsticks and passed it to Shui Yixian, “Now try snapping these chopsticks with your fingers.”

    Shui Yixian took the bunch of chopsticks from him and snapped it into halves effortlessly.

    Xiao Shuai and everyone looked at Shui Yixian in stunned silence…

    Shui Yixian looked at Xiao Shuai and asked, “Err…I am not supposed to break it?”

    The Future Sword Saint asked merrily, “So what the morale of this story?”

    Xiao Shuai said after a while, “If we are like a bunch of weak chopsticks, we will be easily be broken by others.”

    He picked up a thick iron pole-arm from the ground and passed it to Shui Yixian, “But if we are as united as this iron pole-arm, then nothing can ever breaks us!”

    Everyone began to shout eagerly and clapping when suddenly the iron-pole arm was snapped into half by Shui Yixian.

    Everyone looked at her again in stunned silence.

    Shui Yixian protested innocently, “Err…this iron pole-arm is of poor inferior quality…”

    Xiao Shuai said, “You know, I totally agree with you that this iron pole-arm is of poor inferior quality…”

    The Invincible Ironfist nodded, “Very, very inferior that even a lady can break it…”

    Han Shaodong said, “Let’s hope that our leadership is not equally inferior too.”

    Xiao Shuai looked at everyone and smiled bitterly, “You know, even before this leadership has officially started, it is so hard already.”

    Everyone laughed.

    Now that the ice between the various pugilists had been broken, Xiao Shuai suggested. “We will first need a fearsome name for the group. I have already a name in mind.”

    Han Shaodong asked, “Which is?”

    Xiao Shuai smiled mysteriously, “The Celestials from the Celestial Palace!”

    Tian Kui said, “We are using the name of the Celestial Palace and slandering them?”

    Xiao Shuai laughed, “Indeed. No one really knows if the Celestial Palace actually did exist so it doesn’t really matter.”

    Tian Kui said, “I am from the Western Fraternity. My grand protégé master says it does exist…”

    Xiao Shuai said, “Whether it exists or not, it doesn’t matter. This is the perfect name for us to spread our havoc!”

    The Future Sword Saint asked, “Havoc? What kind of havoc?”

    Xiao Shuai smiled mysteriously, “We will raid the various martial clans and sects for their secret manuals and then put it back secretly. We will start with the Infinity Sword Clan.”

    The Future Sword Saint said hurriedly, “You can’t do it. That is something that only an unorthodox clan will do, not us!”

    Xiao Shuai laughed, “Remember, we are not aligned to either now. We will put it back as soon as we have finished with it. So why not?”

    The Future Sword Saint said, “That is because that is my clan you are talking…”

    Everyone turned and looked at the Future Sword Saint, “So you are from the Infinity Sword Clan!”

    The Future Sword Saint looked awkward.

    In the end, the fake Celestial Palace group was still formed. In less than six months, virtually the entire central plain martial clans were turned upside down by the Celestial Palace. In years to come, the terror effect of the Celestial Palace was still remembered by many of the pugilists.

    After six months, the terror of the Celestial Palace mysteriously disappeared from the face of the fraternity as though it had never started.

    One of the main reasons was that Shui Yixian was caught finally for sneaking out of the Eternal Ice Palace and was forced to return to the Eternal Ice Palace by her older protégé sister Shui Yichi. After her departure, Xiao Shuai lost interest in maintaining the group and without Shui Yixian to support the group, they begun to lose some of their founding members too.

    Xiao Shuai had never expected to find her again after fifty years…

    He said, “Why is that you have not aged at all?”

    The Celestial Fairy said expressionless, “I had not age at all when I was with everyone and my age then was already twice as old as the majority of you…”

    Xiao Shuai muttered, “No wonder, you were always so cold to the whole lot of us except for Han Shaodong. Did he know?”

    The Celestial Fairy replied, “No, he doesn’t.”

    Xiao Shuai said, “I don’t mind at all, you know…”

    The Celestial Fairy interrupted coldly and looked at Ding Yunzi, “Why did you send her to the Heavenly Mountains to kill me?”

    Xiao Shuai was startled, “I didn’t.”

    Ding Yunzi said, “I have never been to the Heavenly Mountains.”

    The Celestial Fairy asked again, “You didn’t? Who else knows the Penetrating Hands?”

    Xiao Shuai sighed, “I think I know who you are looking for now. My late wife had a feud with the Eternal Ice Palace and my daughter inherited her hatred…”

    The Celestial Fairy said coldly, “Where is she now?”

    Xiao Shuai said, “I am also looking for her now. She has stolen something very important from me.”

    The Celestial Fairy said slowly, “I will find her and kill her.”

    Xiao Shuai looked at her into her eyes, “Xian’Er, you have changed. If you want to kill my daughter, don’t blame me. I am now the protégé master of the Virtuous Palace. The martial skills and techniques that I have learnt and known exceeded your imagination. Even though your martial progression was higher than us in the past but you do not fight dirty. Your fighting style is too dead. That is your disadvantage and my advantage.”

    Ch17 End
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    Last edited by Avidfan; 11-07-14 at 09:27 PM.

  11. #71
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    thanx for the update... Then it may be Xiao Shuai's daughter then... Will we get chap 18 this weekend as well...
    Last edited by szfong; 08-31-13 at 02:31 PM.

  12. #72
    Join Date
    Apr 2013


    Thanks for the fast update. Loved the flashback scene. The old man is really cocky. So the second disciple of the eternal ice palace became the old mans wife. lol. interested how yi ping will react to his wife being alive.

  13. #73
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    Jun 2013


    wow wow. what an interesting backgrounder fleshing out the story. Did not expect that. Expected them to meet up and the wife coming out to protect Yi Ping and a battle royale ensuing. But I now need another update fast.

  14. #74
    Senior Member Avidfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007


    Chapter 18: Xiao Youxue

    The Celestial Fairy looked intently at Xiao Shuai.

    She had first taken a liking to him in the past for he was courageous, humorous and full of wiles. He had even warn her to be careful of the Penetrating Hands and similar types of martial arts should she encountered it in the future.

    But the more she had spent time with him, the more she realized that he was just a selfish person and there were many things that he had intentional concealed.

    In the end, everyone was like a tool to him to be made use of.

    That was when she began to distance herself from him and became closer to Han Shaodong…

    She asked softly, “Why is that when you have mentioned your daughter, you have such a murderous intent in your eyes? It seems that you want her dead more than I.”

    Xiao Shuai smiled bitterly, “That is because she dared to hinder my martial progression and dare to break the rules of the Virtuous Palace or else I would have mastered the Virtuous Divine Force by now. I can’t allow you to kill her before I do. I will drink her blood and eat her heart when I find her.”

    The Celestial Fairy said coldly, “You are not a good father…”

    She began to turn back as she said softly, “Yu’Er and Mei’Er, let’s us go. He is not worth our time to bother with.”

    Xiao Shuai called out, “Xian’Er, don’t go. You have not told me why you want my daughter dead? I am sure with your state of divinity, you will not go around the fraternity just to find a single person even if she had slight you…”

    The Celestial Fairy said softly as she disappeared into the darkness with her protégés, “It is because she wants to kill someone dear to my heart…”

    Xiao Shuai stood on the same spot for a long time. When he had heard what she had said, his heart became very heavy.

    Ding Yunzi called out gently to him, “Master? Are you alright?”

    Xiao Shuai clenched his fists as he muttered, “Then I will have to kill that person first…Xian’Er, why can’t you understand my difficulties?”

    Ding Yunzi asked demurely, “Master, are we letting them off just like that?”

    Xiao Shuai stared at Ding Yunzi, “Then you are expecting me to kill her?”

    Ding Yunzi kept quiet.

    When Ji Lingfeng had escaped from the Gongsun Manor, she had picked an unlikely route to escape her pursuers. If she had gone in the direction of Xiao Shuai, perhaps she could have chance upon Xiao Shuai and the Celestial Fairy…

    Ji Lingfeng put her hand over her chest as she coughed out blood! She dropped Yi Ping and immediately collapsed besides a shady tree.

    She hoped that her attack would be fatal to Gu Tianle so that she could avenge for her father.

    Her breathing was now weak and her vital energies erratic. She was now at a risk of losing her life unless she could restore her vital energy flow.

    That was because immediately after using the Asper Horizon Hand earlier in the grand hall of the Gongsun Manor despite her internal injuries, she did not pause to restore her vital breath and to circular the flow of her vital energies to restore its balance.

    Instead, she had further stressed her erratic vital energies by forcefully using all her remaining vital energies as she grabbed Yi Ping to escape the Gongsun Manor.

    She was even more worried about Yi Ping than herself.

    Disregarding her own safety, she placed her left hand on Yi Ping’s back and begun to transfer her own vital energies into him while mediating the Divine Revelation at the same time to restore her own vital energy flow.

    She was worried for Yi Ping. That was because he had been unconscious for some time and even if he could regain his consciousness, he would be paralyzed for life…

    That was why she was not wasting any more precious time.

    But as her own vital energy flow had not yet been restored, her efforts took a great toil on her body and she began to feel giddy after some time!

    She gritted her teeth and thought, “I mustn’t fall asleep… If I fall asleep now, both of us will die here.” No matter what happens, she was determined not to lose Yi Ping even at her own expenses!

    Even though her resolute was great but her body could not cope and she was now in a half daze state…

    All of a sudden, she sniffed a strong fragrant scent from behind her. A beautiful slender hand was on Yi Ping’s back as well as her back!

    She opened her eyes and saw a lady in a straw veiled hat that was besides her!

    The lady in the veiled straw hat said calmly, “Don’t you worry; I will do my best to save him. You should try to recuperate for yourself first.”

    The voice of the lady in the veiled straw hat was young but Ji Lingfeng could feel a soothing transference of vital energy that halts the reversal of her blood flow. This mysterious young lady internal strength was not weak!

    She quickly seized the opportunity to lift a vital breath with the Divine Revelation Skill from the energy infusion and began to circulate it throughout her vitality channels, restoring the broken vital energy flow.

    After a long while, her breathing had become normal and the feeling of death had departed! She thought, “Lucky!”

    She opened her eyes and looked at the mysterious lady in the veiled straw hat. She was still transferring her internal strength into Yi Ping and treating his internal injuries. It was a monument task because Yi Ping had completely lost conscious and the internal injuries sustained by Yi Ping were not light!

    Moreover he was also suffering from external wounds and was still bleeding profusely…

    Ji Lingfeng had sustained severe internal injuries herself. Even though she had restored her vital energy flow, her martial power would be drastically reduced and it would be a full three months of intensive mediation cultivation before she could fully recovered!

    One could imagine how many folds Yi Ping internal injuries had been! He had exerted himself much more severely than anyone could have imagined. It was a miracle that he did not die on the spot!

    Who was this mysterious lady? Ji Lingfeng sighed in her heart. She thought that she had finally found the man that she could love and find happiness in. But this was one too many for her young tender heart to take.

    A martial practitioner would never give or expended their vital energy strength needlessly, which was also called internal strength to another. It was because vital energy strength once expended was difficult to recuperate back.

    Not only would it put the practitioner in danger if interrupted, they would also expose themselves in danger while recuperating. At the same time, while waiting for the lost vital energies to recover, the practitioner could not practice any internal martial arts or else they would only endanger their own lives, hence slowing down their martial progression!

    But this mysterious lady was readied to expend her vital energies for Yi Ping. If she was not somewhat related to him or love him enough to make the sacrifice, she would not risk it. Moreover Yi Ping was dying and her efforts would likely to be futile.

    She clutched her heart in sorrow as she thought of this. Earlier, she had pushed herself to her very limits and even if she had failed, she would die together with him. But now, watching Yi Ping dying besides her and with another lady was heart-wrenching for her!

    After a long time, the mysterious lady said. “I manage to protect his heart. He will live for now but his internal injuries are simply too heavy. I will try to restore his broken vital channels but if that fail, he would be paralyzed for life.”

    At this, Ji Lingfeng could not resist asking, “Who are you? Why are you sacrificing so much just for him? Do you have any relations with him?” These were the questions that she been asking herself and now, she could not resist asking anymore.

    The mysterious lady sighed and said melancholy, “Who I am? I am just a nameless nobody to him.”

    Ji Lingfeng said, “At least you should have a name…”

    The mysterious lady said with a great sorrow, “Xiao Youxue is my name…it is a cursed name.”

    Ji Lingfeng made a quick guess, “You like him but there is a feud between the two of you?”

    Xiao Youxue nodded gently.

    Ji Lingfeng sighed, “Can it be resolved?”

    Xiao Youxue shook her head, “It is impossible. This is a blood feud.”

    Ji Lingfeng said, “Yi Ping has a magnanimous heart and is kind. Surely nothing is impossible to resolve.”

    Xiao Youxue replied coolly, “Will you forgive the killer of your wife? And still likes her?”

    Ji Lingfeng gasped. The yellow dressed maiden that Yi Ping had mentioned to her before was her! She was the one that Yi Ping had been searching for. She was also the one that had fought with her brother two years ago!

    This revelation shocked her. She had thought that both of them had a blood feud and that both of them would be at odds with each other!

    She had never expected that this maiden would also be in love with him…

    Ji Lingfeng asked, “Did he know?”

    Xiao Youxue shook her head and said, “He don’t even know my name and who I am. He only knows that I am the one that he is looking for to avenge his late wife.”

    Ji Lingfeng said, “You can hide it from him. Perhaps the both of you can be together…”

    Xiao Youxue said, “I will never be able to live with that feeling of guilt in my heart. Moreover…”

    She paused for a while before looking intently at her, “I can tell that you like him a lot. And maybe both of you are a couple already.”

    Ji Lingfeng said, “Don’t misunderstand! We are not.”

    Xiao Youxue said, “Is that so? That you are willing to sacrifice yourself for him and you don’t like him? I don’t believe.”

    Ji Lingfeng was silence.

    Xiao Youxue added, “Even though we are strangers, I have been completely honest with you.”

    Ji Lingfeng melancholy said, “Indeed you have. I am sorry…but we are indeed not a couple and not in any relation. He doesn’t like me at all.”

    Xiao Youxue said, “Surely he is blind!”

    Ji Lingfeng smiled and said, “Yes he is blind!”

    But her mood turned somber and she said, “I am from a heretic sect and we are simply from two opposite worlds. There will soon be a battle for supremacy between the orthodox fraternity and the unorthodox fraternity. I don’t even know if I can live through this.”

    Xiao Youxue nodded as she added, “There may be still a way for the two of you to be together. If both of you are willing to quit the martial fraternity, then you can be together.”

    Ji Lingfeng added, “That is not possible for me. I can never leave my brother in this moment of crisis. There will be a lot of bloodshed and no matter where I go after that, the exponents of the fraternity will follow me.”

    She smiled and added, “Moreover, like you say. He is blind and he does not like me.”

    Xiao Youxue was silence. She had seen them in the streets earlier and they were talking like old friends. When she had overheard that they were going to the Honor Manor to settle a score against Gongsun Bai, she had immediately feared for Yi Ping.

    Therefore, she took a personal gambit to lure Xiao Shuai and Ding Yunzi who was hot on her heels to the Honor Manor…

    All of a sudden, Xiao Youxue said. “I realize that you seem to recover rather quickly. You take only three hours to balance your vital energy flow and I am expecting something like twelve hours or more.”

    Ji Lingfeng said, “That is why I am able to chat with you!”

    Xiao Youxue suddenly turned somber and said, “I hope that you keep our conversation to yourself and not to divulge anything to him. I don’t want him to know anything.”

    Ji Lingfeng said, “I promise you but you must not tell him what I told you too.”

    Xiao Youxue asked, “Not to tell him what?”

    Ji Lingfeng thought she was clever but this maiden was even cleverer. This was the first time that she had been outmaneuvered for words!

    She sighed and said unwillingly, “Hmph, you really mustn’t tell him that I like him!”

    Xiao Youxue chuckled softly, “I promise you then!”

    Ji Lingfeng sighed again, “Or else I need to dig myself a hole in the ground and covered my face with dirt!”

    All of a sudden Xiao Youxue said, “Weird. Yi Ping seems to have two vital energies in his body. The first one was broken but there is another weaker vital energy that is more intact.”

    Ji Lingfeng asked hurriedly, “That means he has a hope?”

    Xiao Youxue nodded, “I have never seen or heard anything like this. But yes, there is a hope!”

    Ji Lingfeng could discreetly see Xiao Youxue tears dripping onto her dress even though she was veiled.

    Xiao Youxue said, “The weaker vital energy must be the ‘Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Energy’. It has taken less considerably damage and if I can get it to back to its proper meridian channels…”

    Ji Lingfeng heart sunk. She interrupted sadly, “The ‘Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Energy’ is different from normal intricate energy. Only the practitioners of the Eternal Ice Palace practiced the ‘Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Energy’. Only a practitioner of the ‘Icy Heavenly Tears intricate Energy’ can channel to another person with the ‘Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Energy’.”

    Xiao Youxue said, “I just happen to practice the ‘Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Energy’.”

    Ji Lingfeng asked startled, “You know the Icy Heavenly Tears!?”

    Xiao Youxue said, “That is a long story. My grandmother was the direct protégé of the Protégé Mistress of the Eternal Ice Palace in the past.” That was all that she could say for now. That was the start of her tragedy and her family tragedy.

    All of a sudden, she gasped again, “What is it? His vital signs seem to be returning so soon! This is indeed extraordinary!”

    Ji Lingfeng asked, “What happens?”

    Xiao Youxue said, “As soon as I linked the ‘Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Energy’, his scattered vital energies seem to increase again. It is as though, it is regenerating on its own accord! But where does the source of the vital energy come from?”

    Ji Lingfeng said excitedly, “Could it be that, he has accidentally cleared his Conception Vessel and the Governing Vessel?”

    Xiao Youxue was startled. He had cleared his Conception Vessel and the Governing Vessel at such a young age?

    Xiao Youxue took out her pouch and took a small golden pill and popped it into Yi Ping mouth as she once again exercised her internal energy into his body.

    Ji Lingfeng said, “That golden pill is the great rejuvenation golden pill?”

    Xiao Youxue said, “That’s right. That is the last one I have. It has the ability to speed healing and added to the martial power growth of the practitioner.”

    Ji Lingfeng was flabbergasted. The ‘Great Rejuvenation Golden Pills’ were one of the seven treasures of the martial fraternity. Legends said that three hundred years ago, the Sage King, the top exponent of the entire fraternity only made eight such ‘Great Rejuvenation Golden Pills’ towards the end of his life. That was because these eight golden pills required him to sacrifice his entire vital energy into making it!

    The whereabouts of the ‘Great Rejuvenate Golden Pills’ remained a beautiful legend.

    How did Ji Lingfeng know about it?

    That was because when she was only seven year old, she suffered from an illness that almost took her life. Her brother, who was twenty years her senior scouted the entire fraternity for the ‘Great Rejuvenate Golden Pill’ to save her. The difficulties and sacrifices that he had to pay to obtain it were never mentioned to her but she knew. How could she not know? Her brother had undergone a huge change after that.

    That was why she could not abandon her brother even if the entire orthodox martial fraternity decided to battle against him.

    When Xiao Youxue popped the last of the ‘Great Rejuvenation Golden Pill’ to Yi Ping, her eyes had immediately turned watery. It was not because she could not bear to give it to him but it reminded her of her mother’s death.

    When her mother had failed to merge the Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Energy together with the Virtuous Divine Force Intricate Energy and was dying, her father Xiao Shuai refused to give her the ‘Great Rejuvenation Golden Pills’ as a remedy.

    He simply said in a cold and calculating manner to everyone in the Virtuous Palace, “This is just a gambit. Whether the ‘Great Rejuvenation Golden Pill’ will save her or not is not known and we be wasting a precious golden pill. You have no idea how hard it is for me to obtain these ‘Great Rejuvenation Golden Pills’. I have already told her of the risks of practicing the Virtuous Divine Force too early but she simply refused to listen.”

    At that time, Xiao Youxue was only thirteen and she was heart-broken by her father cold calculating attitude.

    She could never understand how her father would be so heartless.

    Xiao Shuai had obtained it in an underground palace ruins and had almost lost his life for it. When he had formed the secret celestial group, no one else seemed to know how valuable these golden pills were.

    He would need as many of those golden pills when he started to practice the Virtuous Divine Force very soon. The Virtuous Divine Force was the most epitome secret martial skill of the Virtuous Palace. In order to practice it, the practitioner’s internal strength would need to be as pure and as strong as possible. If the practitioner have less than sixty years of martial power, it was dangerous to even begin it.

    That was why the secret skills of the Virtuous Palace focused on secret techniques rather than martial power. It was because they simply could not afford to sustain any injuries as internal injuries would affect their future martial progression by many more years!

    The protégés of the Virtuous Palace would seek to end a fight as soon as possible with the least effort and lured their opponents into a false state of security, so that they would strike with complete surprise.

    Their Flying Sword Technique was just a decoy for them to approach their opponents and lure them into a false sense of security. Thereafter, they would kill their opponents with the Penetrating Hands, their Flying Scabbard Technique or with their invisible sword!

    This invisible sword was actually a foldable blade that all protégés of the Virtuous Palace had around their waist and disguised as a belt!

    If their opponents had completely thought that they were weaponless after they had hurled their swords, then they would be making a huge and fatal mistake!

    Even though she was his daughter but he had never imparted to her the Flying Sword Techniques. Instead he had imparted to her only the Penetrating Hands.

    The Flying Sword Technique was one of the first martial skills that all protégés of the Virtuous Palace should start with. She had never understood why her very own father had forbid her and even forbid others to teach her this secret technique.

    She had two older step-brothers who are more than twenty years older than her, Xiao Da the eldest and Xiao Yao who was very distant from her. She supposed to have another older half-sister that she had never seen but who had married off before she was born.

    On the other hand, she was very close to Ding Yunzi who was like a close sister to her and Xiao Fei who was her cousin.

    Before her mother had passed away, she had secretly instructed her, “Be careful of Ding Yunzi. I always feel that she has an ulterior motive. This is the Golden Impervious Body Divine Skill that I have secretly copied from the martial vault of the Virtuous Palace. You are to practice it as a preventive measure against Yunzi. You mustn’t let others know you are in possession of this skill so that they will not be on their guard against it.”

    Xiao Youxue said, “I have heard from father that if we do not reach the advance stage of the Virtuous Divine Force, it is futile to even practice the Golden Impervious Body Divine Skill.”

    Her mother nodded, “It is true. That is why you have to steal the golden pills from him. That may accelerate your internal strength for you to begin practicing the Icy Heavenly Tears Skill first. Whether you have the martial willpower and the acumen to comprehend the Golden Impervious Body Divine Skill, it is up to providence…Don’t forget to get even against the Eternal Ice Palace…”

    Xiao Youxue was afraid, “The Icy Heavenly Tears Skill that we got is incomplete and is only for the first five stages…mother I have no confidence at all…”

    Her mother said, “You got to use your wits. The Icy Heavenly Tears Skill at its highest level has a fatal weakness and Shui Yixian will lose her martial power once every thirty-six years. That will be the best time to you to settle our family scores with her.”

    Her mother smiled bitterly at her on her dying breath. Even though she had never seen Shui Yixian before and had only heard of her name from her mother, her hatred for her was absolute! It was because whenever her husband was drunk, he would mutter her name!

    She had a strong suspicious that the ‘Yixian and Xian’Er that her husband Xiao Shuai was calling out for was in fact Shui Yixian. When she had questioned him about her, he refused to say anything. Therefore she had also deliberately withhold her suspicious to herself and refused to give Xiao Shuai a glimmer of hope.

    That was why she wanted this Shui Yixian to disappear from the face of the earth as well. This Shui Yixian had caused her mother Shui Yisi to be driven out of the Eternal Ice Palace in disgrace and now she had also taken her husband’s heart from her.

    When the opportunity had arisen three years ago, Xiao Youxue had secretly stolen Xiao Shuai’s golden pills when he was in a martial retreat; he was in the crucial stage of reaching the advance level of the Virtuous Divine Force. Without the golden pills, he had to wait another twenty years for the breakthrough.

    She had simply walked into his secret chamber while he was in deep mediation and stolen the golden pills right in front of him!

    In order to do that, every night for three years, she trained her lightness skill until she could walk in absolute quietness and in time to come, that became her feat!

    She had never forgiven her father for indirectly causing her mother’s death therefore she had pretended to be docile and stolen all his ‘Great Rejuvenation Golden Pills’, leaving none for him in his crucial martial level stage.

    When he had found out about the theft of his golden pills, he had flown into a maddening rage and had ordered all the protégés of the Virtuous Palace to find her.

    She had consumed two of the three golden pills in the past three years. The first time was immediately after she had stolen the golden pill to increase her martial strength and the second time when she was in the final stage of the Golden Impervious Body Divine Skill.

    It had been three years since she had left the Virtuous Palace.

    During the first year, she was lucky to meet Xiao Fei, her cousin who warned her to be extra careful for her father had mobilized all the clan elders, including her half-brothers to hunt her down.

    After that, she was always moving from place to place as she devised a stratagem against Shui Yixian at the same time. She was the one that spread rumor of her death and of the fabulous martial treasures of the Eternal Ice Palace to entice the greedy pugilists.

    Why was that when she had killed Shui Yixian, she had not felt happy at all but filled with sorrowful regrets?

    Ch18 End
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    Last edited by Avidfan; 11-07-14 at 09:28 PM.

  15. #75
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    Thanx for the INCREDIBLE update!!

  16. #76
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    Jun 2013


    TQVM. my cup runneth over with satisfaction.

  17. #77
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    Great story. Love the flashback scenes and great detail. Now wishing for a weekday update.

  18. #78
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    Apr 2013


    Quote Originally Posted by szfong View Post
    Great story. Love the flashback scenes and great detail. Now wishing for a weekday update.
    I fully agree with szfong. You're spoiling us now. Thanks for another great chapter. This is making a long weekend bearable.

  19. #79
    Senior Member Avidfan's Avatar
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    Mar 2007


    Thanks everyone for your kind support! =)

    I really like how everyone is trying to guess the story is being unfolded. Some are bingo, some off but that is the fun and the suspense, right? Keep it going please too =)))

    Thanks again!

  20. #80
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Feb 2008


    I'm a bit confused if Xiao Youxue's mother or grandmother was from the Eternal Ice Palace? There seems to be mentioning of this relationship throughout, but is still a bit unclear. One moment it seems to be grandmother, but then later the way Xiao Shuai explains it, it seems to be mother.

    I hope Xiao Youxue has a happy ending, as in most TV series adaptations, characters such as Xiao Youxue's virtually always die at the end by sacrificing themselves for a man who only treats them as platonic friends or even enemies. The man just sheds a single drop of tear while they are dying and rides off in the sunset w/ other woman.
    Last edited by szfong; 09-02-13 at 11:31 AM.

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