At his remark, the Long-brow Saint nearly spat out blood out of aggravation.
“What a shameless brat! How come he has the heart to say things like that? He is such a kiss-and-tell person!”
He then put the broken arm back, but already lost the courage to continue the battle.
The Sky-stabilizing Mirror was a significant instrument that belonged to the empire. It could suppress the movement of qi and energy in Chang’an Mansion, and solely subject to the control of the magistrate. Once it was switched on, the power in the whole city would be drawn to it to help it stabilized the region. The human qi and the natural qi in Chang’an would all be sealed. Only when Li Gang, the Chang’an magistrate, withdrew the power of the Sky-stabilizing Mirror, or the royal members like the second prince cast enchantment with the royal treasure, or those who had surpassed the Celestial Being Realm and entered the Sage Realm came there could the power of heaven and earth be mobilized.
So, at the present state, the Long-brow Saint knew he was not Li Mu’s match.
Plus, behind the second prince also stood several men, who were unmistakable the experts in his company. They were stifling the impulse of striking.
Truthfully, they were all appalled by the combat ability Li Mu just demonstrated.
In particular, that Broadsword-commanding Skill was marvelous, almost bordering upon the maneuver of an immortal. Never had they seen anyone that could bring the Dao-using method to such a fine extent before. Although the Sword-commanding Style of the Heaven Sword Sect was widely known on the Divine Land, there was no doubt that it was incomparable with Li Mu’s Broadsword-commanding Skill.
That martial art Li Mu employed was utterly inconceivable, almost like the Way. Its power of destruction was too startling.
The second prince shouted the order, his face rather stern.
Swoosh! Swoosh! Swoosh!
Many shadows darted forward.
The four experts behind the second prince leaped out and charged at Li Mu at the same time.
The masked young man in white by Li Mu’s side happened to come around at the moment. He stopped the bleeding on his shoulder that was pierced by the spear, brandished the pair of swords, and yelled, “I’m coming to assist you!” He rushed to the front, attempting to block one of the four experts who intended to attack Li Mu.
However, a jet of sword light whooshed past and held back the masked young man in white.
“You want to die? Fine, I’ll satisfy your wish!” The one who sent that jet of sword light was Chu Nantian, the future leader of the Heaven Sword Sect. The young swordsman had once lost to Li Mu and then disappeared for days. Plainly, he had sought the patronage of the second prince.
As one of the future leaders of the Heaven Sword Sect, Chu Nantian was a very excellent swordsman in the Natural Expert, though he was obviously not an equal of Li Mu. As he launched a strike against the masked young man in white, the latter, who was already injured, was instantly subdued, now too busy saving his own neck to help Li Mu.
His shoulder that had been cut by the spear was ripped open due to the sudden push. Blood splattered out, dyeing his white robe red.
He bellowed, as though he did not feel the pain in his shoulder. The two swords in his hand moved swiftly. They looked like two wild flood dragons stirring the sea as well as two suns rising over snow-capped mountains. His attacking momentum was not a bit less than what he had when fighting Meng Wu, the Divine Horse Silver Spear. Even though he did not get the upper hand, he managed to stay alive and also draw a tie with the opponent for the time being.
At first, Li Mu intended to help him out. But at that scene, he could not help murmuring his wonder inwardly.
“The young man in white probably has a unique body constitution for combating. The longer he fights, the stronger he grows. Such a man is just like Qiao Feng, one of the three male protagonists in the Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils, a martial arts genius. The martial arts he utilized could be a dozen times more powerful than the others executed. After all, the Eighteen Subduing Dragon Palms and the Stick Technique of Dog-beating that every Grand Master of the Beggar Gang mastered could only be said to be invincible when Qiao Feng performed them.
If the young man in white could turn on a stereo set and played his exclusive background music, he would genuinely be the invincible Qiao Feng.
Well, there were only a few who had his own background music, and all of them were unconquerable.
From Li Mu’s perspective, that young man in white had the tendency to become Qiao Feng.
What was more, even though he knew that he might die when rescuing Mrs. Tang and her daughters, he came and joined the fight. From that, Li Mu could tell that he was a brave, heroic, and warm-hearted man. According to Li Mu’s standard, such a figure was admirable.
Li Mu was immersed in his thoughts, but his strikes did not slow down.
The four experts attacking him were all trusted men of the second prince. None of their strength was inferior to that of the Long-brow Saint, who had just had a fierce battle with Li Mu. Plus, they were all in the Celestial Being Realm. But at the time they chose to join hands to deal with Li Mu, a Natural Expert, it was understandable that they had relinquished their pride and dignity as Celestial Beings to the utmost.
It also made it clear that from that moment, the real political struggle kicked off.
To the second prince, he would go all out even when attacking the weak. When he detected any sign of disadvantage, he would immediately sweep away any obstacles with a crushing blow powerful as the thunderbolt. Fame and reputation were pointless. Only when he beheaded Li Mu and Li Gang could he embrace the real victory. He always told himself that those who achieved something throughout history never stuck to trifles, because only the winner would go down in history.
Swish! Swish! Swish!
Flying broadswords glinted, while fierce broadsword qi surged.
Li Mu felt a little stressed. Yet, his combat intent was boiling inside him.
The Sky-stabilizing Mirror oppressed the powers of the four Celestial Beings. Since they could not draw support from the power of heaven and earth, they were practically demoted to the peak of the Natural Realm. Although their cultivation was still higher than Li Mu’s, as long as they were unable to use the power of heaven and earth, they could not gain a landslide victory. Thus, to Li Mu, those four were undoubtedly the best whetstones to hone his martial arts.
He held a broad sword and began to perform the Wind-Cloud Six Moves. Meanwhile, twenty smaller flying broadswords started fighting under Li Mu’s mind control. Wrapped by the flying broadswords, Li Mu lunged into a pitched battle with the four experts. Soon, the two parties tied with one another.
The second prince was standing on the loft, paying no attention to the fight.
His eyes crossed several kilometers and set upon Li Gang, the Chang’an magistrate in front of the main altar.
His will to fight had been ignited. His blood, which had run calmly in his veins for years, seemed to be burning. It had been a long time since the second prince last felt eager to battle relentlessly. Considering his status, standing, and cultivation, few in this world were qualified to fight with him.
A faint groan of a dragon spread out of the body of the second prince.
Shafts of pale yellow light emerged around the second prince and converged into an indistinct dragon, which coiled around him. The Dragon-commanding Skill passed down solely among the royal family was their top-one secret martial art. It was also one of the best Cultivation Methods at that time. The power of that art was limitless. It was said that when practicing that skill to perfection, the practitioner could reach the Void-breaking Realm. Indeed, it was on par with the most precious and unique arts the top nine Holy Clans had. Only the vital royal members were allowed to learn that skill. And the purer the royal blood of the practitioner was, the faster his progress would be.
The second prince had been classified as a genius on martial arts the moment he was born. Since he had the purest royal blood, he learned the Dragon-commanding Skill at a tremendous pace. Accordingly, his cultivation was so far the highest among all the princes. That was how he earned the title ‘top one genius in the royal family of Western Qin.’
With a stir of his mind, the groan of the dragon rang again.
As if sensing the killing intent of the second prince, a trace of mockery streaked across Li Gang’s eyes.
Right then, a man’s voice sounded from behind the second prince. “Your Highness, you’d better send me to tackle him. The ruler shall not send his troops to the front line upon an explosion of anger or start to kill due to his mood. How prestigious Your Highness is! You are bound to take the throne soon. Why bother fuss about that dying man?”
A chief eunuch uttered his suggestion. He had been on the heels of the second prince at all hours and always kept his mouth shut as if he did not exist.
The second prince thought his remark carried great weight.
After a moment of hesitation, the pale yellow light around the second prince faded away. The dragon inside him stopped moaning and went back to hibernation. The blazing fire of combat intent slowly died down, too. A while later, he nodded slightly and said, “Well then, I shall have to trouble you, Steward Cao.”
“It’s my pleasure, Your Highness.”
The chief eunuch, who had a fair face and no beard, looked about forty or fifty years old. Showing all due respect on his face, he bowed to the second prince and then took a stride forward and leaped. Next second, he was already at the main altar of the Xiongfeng Martial Art Club several kilometers away, about ten meters far from Li Gang.
“Master Li, long time no see.” His high-pitched voice sounded slightly wicked.
Li Gang’s eyes reflected a tinge of surprise. But soon he smiled unworried and said, “It’s been twenty-one years. Turns out that Cao Bingyan, the Rival Energy against Star River that had once thrilled the entire capital, has become a eunuch serving in the imperial palace. Haw-haw, you merely failed to make yourself one of the Four Great Legends. But how could you go that far as to end your family line?” Hearing that remark, Li Mu was marveled at the finding that the mean magistrate had such a vicious tongue.
Then, the corner of the mouth of the beard-free, fair-skinned chief eunuch slightly twitched as he said, “I did that precisely for today’s fight!”
Back then, Cao Bingyan, the Rival Energy against Star River, also took part in the same imperial examination as Li Gang and the others did. He was a celebrated man, too. Looking back at that years’ imperial examination, it was still quite excellent thanks to all those brilliant examinees, just like a hundred flowers in bloom. Indeed, such a fruitful imperial examination could not be seen in several centuries. Among all those talents selected in that year, Cao Bingyan was one of the tops. But unfortunately, his great moment froze during the challenge against Li Gang, the Sword Whiz.
Later, his Star River Sword was defeated by the Secular Sword at the very first move.
But to do him justice, it was not much of a shame because the Secular Sword was acknowledged as the best sword in the capital.
Nonetheless, for a self-conceited man like Cao Bingyan, it was absolutely a heavy blow, an unacceptable knock-down. Some had once held the theory that in that year, there actually could be five Great Legends, for Cao Bingyan was qualified to join the league. However, the fifth Great Legend-to-be took a different road. He shunned the fame he just earned and disappeared like Wu Guiren, the Divinely Grievous Spear.
Thus, when they crossed paths again two decades later, Li Gang was astonished to see such a proud talent cut off the source of trouble and become a eunuch working in the imperial palace.
“He bore the grudge from the disgrace of that defeat till today?”
Li Gang decided to stop the chit-chat. He raised a hand and bellowed, “Come on, strike. Let me see if Brother Cao’s Star River Sword has truly conquered Star Rivers after twenty-one years!”
At his provocation, the eyes of the chief eunuch shone brightly like sharp sword light. He remarked, “From now on, there is no longer the Secular Sword or the Sword Whiz Li Gang in this world.”
“How could it be?”
Mu Qing was drawing himself back at a fast speed, his hand pressing his belly. A wisp of blood spilled out and trickled down his fingertip. His face was written with incredulity. The Fancy Sword he gripped a moment ago had sunk into Li Mu’s back by the width of two fingers. But as if the sword was molded on his back, Mu Qing could no longer pull it out.
“Why can’t it be?”
With a roar of laughter, Li Mu said, “This is battling.”
He had sacrificed his back to injure the opponent successfully. During the meantime, he also gave the Celestial Being a devastating blow with his Blade Punch. Had the other three Celestial Being not come to his rescue in time and forced Li Mu to give up chasing after the prey, Mu Qing would have been chopped in two from the middle waist by then.
After taking a hack of Li Mu’s broadsword, Mu Qing’s combat ability plummeted.
On the other hand, the sword he thrust into Li Mu’s back did not cause him any fatal harm.
Given that Li Mu’s physical strength was way stronger than the Celestial Being’s, the sword got clapped by the muscles when it sank in by the width of two fingers. Above all, through Li Mu’s Third Eye, he could perceive the tread of the strikes his opponent launched, which was precognition. Thus, he only took the blow when the momentum of the attack was on the wane or already at the weakest point.
The robust physique was one of Li Mu’s ace cards.
The Third Eye was another ace card he had that assured him to a strong position even in the face of the joint attack of the four Celestial Beings.
It could be safely said that Li Mu was dancing on rows of pointed blades.
As if the Tai Mountain was bearing down upon him, immense pressure flooded over. Having undergone such intensive hardship, Li Mu had a vague feeling that he was about to make a breakthrough again.