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 The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong

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Join date : 2010-03-14

PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:57 am

Chapter Twenty-four: The Intense Duel

When Meng Ruping saw that Zhan Bai’s sword was no ordinary sword, he was still determined to channel all his internal power to his wrist and hacked towards Zhan Bai while still in mid-air.

There was a shower of brilliant golden sparks as both swords clashed towards one another. The brightness was similar to a burning tree and the imagery was like a mirage!

Both felt their shoulders growing numb at the same time and the power of their strength was actually equaled!

As Meng Ruping had the advantage of the brilliant light in mid-air, he quickly tumbled eight yard away.

Both quickly started to inspect their swords for damage!

Zhan Bai’s Heartless Precious Sword was still as crystal like as water and did not seem to be damaged in any way while Meng Ruping’s black long sword was still as dark and also did not have any damage.

Therefore, both of them instantly knew that the other side had a precious sword in their hands and gave up the idea to damage the other’s weapon. And both decided to use all their best martial skills and once again they began to enter the melee.

Everyone could only glimpse the rainbow glare of Zhan Bai’s Heartless Precious Sword and Meng Ruping’s black long sword was like a black dragon flashing everywhere. Two powerful sword energies were flaring and its heat was radiating from the area!

When both were fighting fast and furiously, no one could see where they were except for their sword energies!

In a twinkle of the eye, they had exchanged more than forty strokes.

[Crouching Iron Back Dragon] was staring at the area and was shouting in a loud voice as he appraised both their swordplay, “Heh! Very good, young fellow! This stroke, ‘The Golden Needle holding the Seas’ is indeed well executed and worthy!”

“Alas! What a pity! Ruping! This stroke ‘Hacking the Prawn in the Waves’ is only lacking two inches and it could not harm the opposition…”

[Iron Wing Bird] was very solemn but his sharp brilliant small eyes were staring unblinking at the fight. He was biting his lips tensely but refused to say anything.

Jin Caifeng the [Jiangnan Most Beautiful Maiden] knew that her older protégé brother had inherited her father’s best skills and she was secretly worried for her admirer. Her big water eyes were looking unblinking at them and her fists were grasped tightly, so much that her fists broke into cold fragrance sweat.

As for the maids and man servants that were in the area trying to see the commotion, they were all dumbfounded as they stared wide-eyed. Even though they had seen many furious duels before but they had never seen one so tense and furious before.

The cold piercing sword wave and the windforce that was generated was extremely cold and its light too flaring. Quite a few was scared by it and could not stand properly. Unconsciously, they had begun to step back continuously.

And Zhan Bai and Meng Ruping was now at the most critical stage of their life and death.

Meng Ruping swordmanship was extremely high and moreover his swiftness movement arts were also agile. The way he moved was like an extremely agile monkey moving around and his swordplay was extremely vicious. All his strokes were aimed at Zhan Bai’s vulnerable positions. He could not wait to kill Zhan Bai hence removing this love foe.

Zhan Bai’s internal strength was vigorous therefore his breathing and execution was steady. His swordplay was orthodox and his hands, eyes, body, stroke, steps and in all ways were all extremely steady as though he had practiced long and hard before. As his swordplay was orthodox, honorable and aboveboard, there seemed to be an air of graceful poise and he seemed have a demeanor of a grandmaster.

As Meng Ruping fought with him, he was feeling weirder and weirder for Zhan Bai’s swordplay was the most commonly seen swordplay in the martial fraternity called the 'Thrice Swordplay'. He only added a few weird additional modifications to it and it was not at all useful and brilliant.

He had always thought highly of his swordplay and was renowned as a swordsman too but still, he could not gain any advantage over him at the moment! He had already carried out several secret killer strokes and yet Zhan Bai did not panic and remained extremely composed as he used a simple stroke from a simple swordplay and neutralized his intricate killing strokes.

At this moment of time, they had battled close to a hundred exchanges without an outcome.

As Meng Ruping was growing impatience and coincidentally when Zhan Bai executed a stroke from the ‘Cosmos Return’, and hack across onto his head, this gave him an excellent opportunity!

Suddenly he blended over his body. Not only did he avoided Zhan Bai’s attack, he also counterattacked with a stroke from the ‘Moon’s Reflection’ and hurriedly hacked at Zhan Bai’s underneath!

Zhan Bai reacted by springing upwards and he displayed the ‘Meteorite over the Moon’ and once again aimed at the top of Meng Ruping’s head once more.

According to convention thoughts, Meng Ruping should have immediately use ‘The Evading Wind’ or the ‘Divine Bee’ to avoid Zhan Bai’s ‘Meteorite over the Moon’.

But he was too eager to claim a victory and therefore he thought he would try a risky stroke so as to achieve victory. Therefore he did not dodge or move and thrust his sword upwards with a stroke, the ‘Million flowers Meeting the Buddha’ and aimed directly at Zhan Bai’s chest.

Indeed, this stroke was extremely risky. If Zhan Bai swiftness arts were higher and he could change his position in mid air, and hovered upwards by three more inches, he would have pierced the top of Meng Ruping’s head.

But after close to a hundred strokes of exchange, Meng Ruping had figured out how the extend of Zhan Bai Zhan Bai swiftness agility. He had calculated that Zhan Bai could not know how to change his position in mid air nor could he hovered upwards, therefore he executed this risky stroke.

But did Zhan Bai really do not possess the ability to change his position in mid air? He could! It was because his martial arts and internal power had improved too rapidly that he himself did not know the potential of his internal power! Moreover he was also lacking in fighting experience and he expected Meng Ruping would dodge his attack.

But when Meng Ruping did not back off and thrust his sword horizontally towards his chest and Zhan Bai knew that he could not evade it and saw that he was about to be killed…

Those with average martial skills would never have saw how risky this stroke was but the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] and Jin Caifeng knew that this stroke was risky beyond compare and all of them gave out a startled cry.

“Ruping!” [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] gave a great shout, “What sort of fighting style is this!” And he sprang forward…

It was too late.

Zhan Bai panicked and he tried to muster all his internal powers onto his wrist and hand, channeling all the surrounding vital internal energies into his sword and swung it, knocking Meng Ruping’s black long sword away onto the ground leaving Meng Ruping stunned with his mouth opened.

Zhan Bai immediately flinched his wrist and landed the cold blade of the Heartless Precious Sword at Meng Ruping’s throat.

When Meng Ruping had saw that he was defeated, he was so miserable that he could feel as though a million arrows had just pierced him. This was the first time that he had been defeated in such a miserable state! And his beautiful face turned gray.

Zhan Bai had not expected he could freely muster and withhold his internal power to this stage. So when he placed the Heartless Precious Sword onto Meng Ruping’s sword, he too, was stunned and did not continued anymore.

“Hahaha!” [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] arrived like the wind and he was in front of them. He laughed heartily before he said, “Young fellow, you are really something! You have won and it is such an admirable victory! But it is just a duel to display both your inherent talents. Since both of you do not have any enmity with one another, that is enough. You can now sheathed your sword!”

Even though the [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] was very old, he had a ruddy red face and his bearing was majestic and commanding. His voice too was like a loud thunder and he had a charismatic presence.

Zhan Bai did not wish to kill someone who could not retaliate and moreover his plot to avenge his father was still undiscovered, he was still a guest in the Jin Residence. Also, he did not to be accused of killing an innocent. Of course, [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] played an important role with his commanding voice as well.

Therefore he sheathed his sword and stepped eight yards back before saying, “I will pay heed to old senior.” But he continued to face Meng Ruping and coldly said, “As long as you do not consider everyone else beneath you and to go about with your nose in the air…”

“Filthy rascal! Don’t be a too sure of yourself!” Meng Ruping thundered, “See if you can handle this or not!” He waved his left hands and a multitude of dazzling green light furiously flied towards Zhan Bai.

Meng Ruping used the ‘Showering the Skies’ method to launch the secret projectiles of the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] that was so famously known throughout the pugilist fraternity as the ‘Golden Coin Darts’.

“Older protégé brother! How dare you!...” Jin Caifeng exclaimed in startled cries…

[Crouching Iron Back Dragon] was equally shocked, “Ruping!” Zhan Bai was a guest of the Jin Residence and he had heed his advises and sheathed his sword. But he never expected that his own people did not respect his reputation and took the opportunity to make such a vicious sneak attack!

Therefore he thundered out angrily, “What are you trying to do…” And at the same time tried to knock down the darts with his windforce from his palms.

But the ‘Golden Coins Darts’ were specially made and the method of throwing was equally unique. Even the powerful windforce of the [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] could not knocked all the darts down! And several darts sped past him faster than before like meteor showers and aimed towards Zhan Bai!

There were three golden clanks of metals and three golden flare as three of the golden coin darts were knocked down by Jin Caifeng! It was because she had already prepared three golden coin darts in case of an emergency earlier.

When she saw that old senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] failed to knock down all the darts, she had launched hers.

But there were still four darts that were left! The golden coin darts were aiming at Zhan Bai’s shoulders and his legs!

When Jin Caifeng tried to take out more of her golden coin darts to save Zhan Bai, it was already too late. Her beautiful crescent face turned pale…

Zhan Bai tried to dodge the darts by tumbling but could only dodge three of them. He was struck on his left shoulder and the dart went deeply into his shoulder as fresh blood oozed out!

Zhan Bai felt a chilling energy on his injured shoulder and it went straight into his organs! He knew instantly that the secret projectile had been coated with poison! He was startled immediately but he clenched his teeth tightly and endured the pain. Quickly, he sealed his accupoints on his left shoulder and with his right fingers and then secretly used the ‘Golden Vest’ hand method to force the dart out.

“Young Hero Zhan!” Jin Caifeng quickly took out a pill and melancholy cried out, “This is the antidote. Hurry and administrate it! Or else…”

Zhan Bai clenched the golden coin dart that he had forced out and his expressions were terrible. And there were tears of blood flowing from his eyes. He did not even noticed Jin Caifeng soft and demure voice…

Jin Caifeng was flabbergasted when she saw the terrible expressions on Zhan Bai. She could not help but feel a chill in her heart.

She said in a trembling voice, “Young Hero Zhan, please do not be like this! It is my older protégé brother that wronged you. Wait for my brother to come back and I will surely inform him and asked him to administrate justice on your behalf!”

As she said, she tore off the clothes from his injured shoulder and administrated the antidote into the wound. She used her jade hand and massage continuously…

But Zhan Bai was not paying any attention. His mind was far away and was thinking of a sorrowful thing. But no one else knew what was in his mind…

When Meng Ruping had saw how concerned Jin Caifeng was towards Zhan Bai, his jealousy was once again ignited and he was prepared to use the golden coin darts once more.

“Ruping!” Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] thundered aloud, “What are you doing? Are you not showing me at least a little respect and really wants me to make a move on you?!”

But Zhan Bai was not aware of the commotion and when Jin Caifeng helped him to administrate the antidote, he did not notice too. It was because he suddenly remembered how terrible his father had died. This golden coin dart was similar to the bronze coin and one of the six objects that his father had given to him just before he had died!

Immediately, he had imagined how his father was surrounded and had fought six powerful exponents. It was such a bloody scene. His father, Zhan Yuntian of the Thunderbolt Sword fame with his Heartless Precious Sword was trapped in the midst of the six most powerful exponents of his time. Did they attack him at the same time or did they use a wolf pack tactic to wear him off?

He really would not guess but he was sure that his father fought till the very end and exhausted all his vital internal energies before Jin Jiu or maybe others as well began to use their secret projectiles on him! Finally they began to descent upon him and began to hack…

But why did these people of the Jiangnan Seven Heroes fame who had sworn together in a brotherhood and swore to die together suddenly decided to gang up against his father? It was a mystery that was hard to figure it out!…

Zhan Bai continued to think. If his father did not die, he would share equal fame and renowned with the Jiangnan Seven Heroes and he himself, would grow up too with the status that was accorded to the present four young masters of the martial fraternity. At the very least, he would be travelling alone with his parents as they sojourned across the pugilist fraternity joyfully and led a carefree life. Unlike now, he was forced to wander in a downcast manner across the pugilist realm and had no place for him to settle. He was really pitiful!…

But Zhan Bai had a sudden realization. He was now without doubt that this golden coin dart was indeed Jin Jiu’s bronze coin dart! This proves that this Jin Jiu was without doubt his father’s killer and although he took a risk by entering the Jin Residence, he did not have the opportunity to see Jin Jiu yet.

But if he were to kill jin Jiu’s favorite disciple, he would surely appear! Now that he had this opportunity, why not take this chance to avenge for his father? If not, would he have any more chances in the future?

When his thoughts cleared, Zhan Bai suddenly shouted, “Stand where you are!”

This explosive shout was burst out from Zhan Bai vented up hatred and infused with his vital internal energies. His voice was like thunderbolt and it deafened the ears of all the others, causing them to feel a piercing breaking pain!

After Meng Ruping was yelled by Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon], he picked his black long sword and turned to move away. But after he took two steps, he was halted by Zhan Bai’s shout and he immediately turned around and stared viciously at him. “I will surely stand where I am! Hehe! Do you really think with your lousy swordplay, you can really win? That is because I am careless, that is why you managed to this small opportunity for victory. If it isn’t for the sake of Old Senior Gongsun, you will surely have died earlier!”

Zhan Bai unsheathed his Heartless Precious Sword and said, “There is no need to be so courtesy. We can start afresh and who is the strong, who is weak, there will be an outcome soon enough!”

Meng Ruping flashed his black long sword in his hand and exclaimed, “Do you think I am afraid of you!”

“Young Hero Zhan!” Jin Caifeng anxiously pleaded, “You are carrying an injury now. Do not be bothered with him…”

Even Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] said, “Let get over this. We have already seen everyone’s strength and what is the point of another fight? This is not a vendetta…”

Zhan Bai pushed Jin Caifeng away and said, “Today, no one can stop us! If he do not die, then I will perish then!”

Everyone was astonished and thought that they were really going to kill one another. But they did not know the vendetta in Zhan Bai’s heart and the fire of jealousy in Meng Ruping’s heart had both ignited a burning fire that was three thousands feet high.

“Good!” Meng Ruping shouted, “Today, I will surely end this with you!” And he charged at Zhan Bai with a stroke ‘The Fire Prawn Piercing the Sun’.

Zhan Bai knew by now that Meng Ruping’s internal strength was not as solid as his foundation. He had depended on the mysteries and intricacies of his superior swordplay. Not wanting to lose his opportunity for as time flew, he might be on the losing end, he too, charged into the fray a ‘Making Waves off the Southern Seas’.

This type of swordmanship and fighting style was an extremely rare sight in the martial fraternity. Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] was overjoyed while Jin Caifeng was startled. Even Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird] was showing emotions on his face as they all grasped.

Both Zhan Bai and Meng Ruping were both attacking furiously. They scattered the vases and various decorations in the court as they fought from one end to the other.

At first, it was Zhan Bai that was making all the attacks for more than ten strokes, and Meng Ruping was in a state of panicky as he tried to fend it off. Then when Meng Ruping got a breathing space, it was his turn to attack Zhan Bai continuously with his many superior swordplay, all of it extremely vicious and aimed at Zhan Bai’s most vulnerable positions.

But when it was Zhan Bai’s turn again, he too responded again with hurried attacks.

The people in the martial fraternity had never witnessed a fight like this one. Even the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] and all the veterans of the pugilist fraternity here who had seen and been to countless number of fights had never saw such a level of crazy fight before! For awhile, everyone was looking dumbfounded and even forgot to stop the fight…

Jin Caifeng was in a state of panic and she did not know what to do. She did not want Meng Ruping to hurt Zhan Bai but she also did not want Zhan Bai to hurt Meng Ruping. No matter, among all the others, she was the most anxious.

But both of them were fighting like crazy tigers and her voice was hoarse from shouting but they did not seem to bother and was focused on their intense and vicious fight.

Both their fighting style was exceptional unique. One made use of his great agility and superior swordplay, the other had a good foundation in his internal power and steady swordplay.

The entire court was now in a chaotic mess as more than a hundred strokes had been exchanged by both sides. It seemed that even if two hundred strokes were to be exchanged, there would still be no outcome.

Many started to heave and sighed. This fierce battle was a once a lifetime scene. Quite a few began to wonder what might the result be once the battle concluded at the end?

The [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] were too engrossed in the fight and forgot their supposed responsibilities and duties. Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] was gesturing with his hands and responding with praises while the solemn face of Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird] was excited beyond measuring; he was staring intensely with his small eyes at the crazed battle that was going on.

But before long, Meng Ruping was sweating and beads of perspiration flowed from his head as his internal strength was inferior to Zhan Bai.

Zhan Bai battled more and more courageous even though blood was dripping down from his injuries on his left shoulder. He attacked furiously as though his internal power improved the more he used it.

But now, Zhan Bai had corned Meng Ruping with the light of his sword.

Meng Ruping saw that he was surrounded by the imagery of Zhan Bai’s sword and he began to feel pressurized. He began to grow anxious and knew that if it were to continue, he would surely be defeated. This was not just a matter of pride! Not wanting to be defeated, not wanting to lose his beloved, it did not matter if he lost the respect of others, even his life would not matter!

He had secretly decided to harden his will to kill and he had taken out the golden coin darts and placed it in his hand secretly!

Jin Caifeng was so hoarse from shouting that she could no longer shout anymore. Now that Zhan Bai had the upper hand, she could tell from his expressions that if he had won, he would not hesitate to kill Meng Ruping.

And Meng Ruping’s expressions were equally vicious. He had already put the golden coin darts that her father had given him into his palms. Once this life pursuing golden coin darts were released, Zhan Bai would surely die or wounded by it!

She did not want anyone of them to be dead or wounded. Therefore she was in a state of great anxiety and her beautiful face had turned ashen. She had been too anxious and when she regained some of her composure, her intelligent mind reminded her that since her brother was not around, there was still the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] that was around. Only they had the power and ability to stop this fight. She looked at Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird] who was looking intensely at the fight and said, “Uncle Ba! Will you please stop them! Or else…”

When she saw that Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird] was too engrossed to take notice of her, she suddenly remembered that he was a weird person and sometimes did certain thing that was beyond the comprehension of the others. Therefore she turned towards Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] and said, “Uncle Gongsun! Will you please step in and stop them from fighting!”

Gongsun Chu the [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] began to laugh happily, “Maiden, don’t you worry. Although they are fighting intensely but for the time being, the outcome…oh shit!”

Before he could finish, there was a horrible loud scream and blood was scattered everywhere!

Meng Ruping had turned horribly white and his left shoulder had been hacked off! Even though his right hand was still clutching his sword, it was now shaking uncontrollable!

When the servants of the Jin Residence saw their Master’s favorite disciple was injured, there was cries of panicky and anxiety…

When Jin Caifeng was asking Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] for help, Zhan Bai had saw Meng Ruping reaching out for the golden coin darts. He had continued with a few violence and furious sword strokes before he displayed ‘Slant Abandoned’, a sword stroke from the Wind Chaser Swordplay.

This unique masterstroke was actually a superior swordplay from the Wind Chaser Swordplay using the principle of ‘There is falsehood in the Truth and there is Truth in falsehood’. Somehow Zhan Bai had picked it up from the Fan Brothers. He had a knack of learning any skills even in duress and it was not just mimic and could apply it and modified it to his own use without knowing the techniques involved.

Meng Ruping had saw Zhan Bai’s sword towards his right side and when he wanted to throw the golden coin darts, Zhan Bai had reversed his body and now his right was his left and caught by surprise, his arm was hacked off as he could not avoided Zhan Bai’s sword in time!

And the golden coin darts, together with his arm scattered on the ground.

It was really a coincidence. If Jin Caifeng did not try to ask Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] for help, he would not be distracted and would surely have helped Meng Ruping and not let Zhan Bai hurt him.

Even though Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird] had seen it but he did not want to stop it. It was because if two sides battled with one another and one side were to perish, the person that perished deserved to die for his lack of skills and should not blame it upon others. Even if it were his own son, he would not care a hoot and he deserved it! It was because he had this view that a duel without blood was a disappointment instead.

When Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] had seen that, he knew a troublesome tragedy had occurred. He immediately sprang forward into the scene and while in midair, extended his palm towards Zhan Bai. He was afraid that Zhan Bai might take advantage of Meng Ruping in his injured state therefore he entered the fray to interfere.

But Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird] was even swifter than him and like a flying bird descending upon a prey, was on top of Zhan Bai in an instant! He was like a mountain crashing down onto him!

Two powerful hurricane windforce, one left and one right descended upon Zhan Bai.

When Zhan Bai had caught sight of such a startling power, he dared not to engage in close melee and therefore he sprang back a yard away.

There was such a thunderous clap when both Old Seniors accidentally struck one another with their palm and claw that dust flew all over the place!

When they discovered that Zhan Bai had sprang backwards, they withdrawn in time half of their might but the power generated was still so awesome. The foundation of their internal power was indeed absolutely startling!

But Zhan Bai shown no sight of being afraid and he waved his sword to say, “Does the two Old Seniors wish to interfere and fight with me as well?”

Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] sealed the accupoints of Meng Ruping’s accupoints on his upper left shoulder to stop his blood loss. Next, he immediately two servants to hurry and get some medicines…

As for Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird], he said coldly to Zhan Bai, “Rascal! Why don’t you hack off your shoulder now to save me the troubles of doing it later!”

Zhan Bai waved his sword but before he could say anything, Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] interrupted with a laughter. “Second brother Ba! Let them settle it themselves! Why should we interfere? If this gets out to the pugilist fraternity, won’t we be a laughing stock and others would say we are using our seniority to bully the weak! Let these junior pugilists handle it on their own!”

Meng Ruping who just had some medical aid from the servants now walked towards Zhan Bai. He stared at him viciously and said, “I will never forget this vendetta, I will surely take vengeance for the loss of my arm!”

Zhan Bai retorted, “I will surely welcome you anytime, anywhere!”

Surprising, Old Senior [Iron Wing Bird] seemed to be extremely obedience to Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] and did not say a word more now.

As for Jin Caifeng, her beautiful face had turned pale and she did not know what to do now…

Zhan Bai paid a respect to Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] with his hands and said, “Old Senior, if there isn’t anymore thing, I take my leave now!”

Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] was taken aback, “Young Fellow, why not wait till tomorrow? Wait for our Young Master to be back before leaving, alright?”

“I really have urgent matters to attend to and cannot afford to wait any longer,” Zhan Bai replied. “My sincere apologies and many thanks to you. I will now take my leave.

When he had finished, he sheathed the Heartless Precious Sword and once again, bowed with his hands and turned around to leave…

“Young Hero Zhan….” Jin Caifeng called out hurriedly thrice but Zhan Bai did not for once turn his head around and walked away.

Old Senior [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] stared at Zhan Bai all the way till he had vanished from sight but he did not say anything more to hold him back…

When Zhan Bai left the Jin Residence, he did not attempt to stay in any Inns for the night but he traveled throughout the night towards the Mountain Rocks of the Twelve Caves.


At this moment, Zhan Bai was pleased with himself but at the same time, he was disappointed.

He was pleased that his martial arts had shown improvement and he could defeat Jin Jiu’s direct successor Meng Ruping.  

He was disappointed because he had witnessed the martial levels of the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] and their martial level were simply too high and had no way to win. Moreover, there were so many highly accomplished exponents in the Jin Residence. How could he alone defeat everyone? It seemed beyond his reach to avenge for his father…

And in his mind, the images of Jin Caifeng often appeared to him. He thought often of her lovely deep affections for him. It made him sweet and bitter at the same time, joy and sadness…

Zhan Bai walked slowly towards the Mountain Rocks of the Twelve Caves. The reason why he did not hurry was because he did not know where to find Old Senior [Divine Donkey with the Iron Gut] Dong Qianli and secondly, he had many things on his mind.

He walked past many caves and even though all those caves were deserted but there were signs and markings left behind by travelers and tourists. He began to feel that the information by Old Senior [Living Dead Man] was unreliable. A reclusive hero like Dong Qianli would never like to be in the company of noisy and troublesome travelers. He had made a futile trip…

But still he did not give up and even though he knew it was useless, he continued to search the mountains. After another three caves, he went deep inside the mountains.

When he walked past a peak, suddenly he could hear the melodious voice of a young maiden, “This round is not counted! Once more!”

Then an old man voice said, “Why do you have so many funny ideas, young girl? Are making taking an old man like me for a monkey? No way I am not going to do it again!”

Another old man’s voice was heard laughing aloud, “Don’t you deny it! If you do not do it again, then admit that you have lost!”

“I won’t let you win me that so easily! Even though I am an old man that do not have any legs but it is not something that can bow me over!” When he had finished, there was a breeze coming from that direction!

When Zhan Bai had heard those three voices, a feeling of familiarity struck him but he could not recall who they were. He was more curious why three people would hide in the mountains and gambled in secret?

Therefore he hastened his steps and when he was near, he moved silently and out of sight. Then he saw in front of him was a gigantic boulder on the ground, as though it was man made arena.

Then he saw a young maiden in white, a thin old man with white hair and another old man with no legs.

That old man with no legs was standing with his hands and he was hopping around like he was jumping and flying! He was really weird and looked like he was doing the devil dance under the moonlight!

Under the moonlight, coupled with Zhan Bai superior eyesight, he could see quite clearly. That old man without any legs was the strange old man that had chased the [Jiangnan Two Extraordinary] three days earlier.

As for the thin old man with white hair, it was too far for Zhan Bai to identify him.

As for that young maiden in white, with her beautiful hair fluttering, was the delicate and innocent Zhan Wan’Er.

“Why did she come to the wilderness with two old men? What game is she after?…”

The old man without legs, grasped his clutches proudly and said, “What do you think? Even though an old man like me has no legs, I can still do it!”

“Alas!” Wan’Er sighed deeply before saying, “I think both of you have comparison martial powers. It is really hard to determine an outcome. Why not give it up!”

“What do you mean by comparison?” The old hair old man protested. “Little girl! Why don’t you pointed out who has the higher martial prowess! But no matter, I insist on proving which among us, have the truly superiority!”

“That is right!” The other old man with the clutches exclaimed. “We have already contested for three days and three nights, I bet you have already taken out all your skills. I bet you do not have any masterstrokes in your sleeves anymore! I must fight it all out with you!”

“But what is there to contest anymore?” Zhan Bai said, “Fist, palm, weapon, secret projectile, internal power, internal vital energies, swiftness agility and movement, what else is left? I think, why don’t both of you just admit that you are equal and make it a tie!”

“No way! No way!” The thin and white hair old man shook furiously as he repeated himself twice. Then he suddenly said, “Now the topic has arrived. Earlier, a man has just arrived and he is now watching us in secret…”

Without waiting for the thin and white old man to finish, the old man with the clutches interrupted, “I have already known that! Haha! He is just hiding behind that big tree on that mountain slope!” And he waved his clutch towards the direction of Zhan Bai.

Zhan Bai was startled. He was very sure he had concealed himself perfectly but who could expect that he was still unable to mask it from those two old men. Just when he was about to come out of his hiding place, the thin and white hair old man panicky shouted, “Wait! Wait a minute! Just stay where you are and don’t reveal yourself just yet!...”

Zhan Bai was even more startled. He thought, “I didn’t even move and he could guess what is in my mind? Does this old man have the ability to ‘Inspect the Heavens and Listening to the Earth’? How else then would he able to know what is on my mind!...”

Chapter Twenty-four Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:57 am

Chapter Twenty-five: Divine Donkey vs the Divine Ape

“Let us guess the identity of this unknown person,” the thin old man said. “How old is this person? Is it male or female? Who can correctly guess it is the winner and the one that deduct wrongly is considered the loser! Old freak, what do you think of this idea?”

The old with the clutches began to laugh aloud. “You sly old man that rides a donkey! No matter how smart you are, you will never fool me! Someone that you have known has arrived, do you think I do know yet?”

When Zhan Bai heard that the thin old man was the one that rode a donkey, he immediately concluded that this eccentric old man must be the reclusive master Dong Qianli of the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] fame that he had been searching for all along!

Therefore, he sprang onto the platform while shouting, “Old Senior Dong! I, Junior, have been searching for you in despair all this while!” He had forgotten that they were in the midst of a contest.

Dong Qianli stared blankly for instance. His martial accomplishments were said to be unequaled and his six senses were extremely sensitive. By listening to the footsteps of the intruder, he deducted it must be a young personal and definitely a man.

Therefore he wanted to use his superior deductions to win this old man with the clutches. But he never expected anyone to recognize him; that was because he had been concealing his whereabouts for decades. Even in the present pugilistic fraternity, very few would know of his name now.

Now that Zhan Bai had greeted him by his surname and further confirmed the prediction of the other old man, making him stumped for words. He asked, “How did you know my name?”

Before Zhan Bai could reply, the other old man was mocking, “There is no need for further play acting! I bet you have run out of ideas therefore you secretly ask a junior to hide down there so as to trick me. You can’t even food a three year old kid…”

Dong Qianli the [Iron Gut Divine Donkey] was indignant and he gently waved his palms while exclaiming in anger, “Old freak! Don’t blather non-stop and try taking a few blows from me!”

When Dong Qianli attacked with his palms, there was no windforce, for it was a soft and supple type of skill. But the impact of his palm strength was extremely shocking!

“I won’ cares a hoot even if it were a few hundred blows!” While the other old man had said, his five fingers too emitted an invisible soft gentle wave!

When their gentle wave clashed against one another, there were titanic thunderclaps! Amidst the first wave, they exchanged a further three blows that were so fast, fury that the surrounding mountains echoed with their titanic clash!

Zhan Bai was secretly startled. It was already so astonishing that they were so fast that he could not see clearly. Their gentle flurry palm strength could give off such startling power, it was out of the world!

When Wan’Er saw Zhan Bai appearing before her eyes, she was both thrilled and astonished. For a moment, she was dumbfounded. Then when the two old men had started fighting and Zhan Bai was looking as though he was entranced and did not look at her, she could not help remarking in melancholy, “Alas! They have started fighting once more. It looks like this is going to be another endless and futile fight again. They are already so old yet their tempers are still so uncontrollable huh!”

Zhan Bai sighed nonstop when he saw that the old man with the clutches was so dexterous and his martial abilities were not beneath that of the [Iron Gut Divine Donkey]. A cripple that could have such accomplishments was indeed worthy of praise and envy!

The more he looked, the more bewildered he was. He could not help asking, “Why did they want to fight with one another?”

Wan’Er replied, “I myself do not know what and why are they fighting for. I come here to look for you but to no avail. Instead, I come into them. And they been fighting for three days and three nights now. Virtually all types of unarmed and armed combat, all types of martial and internal martial skills have been fought over with but there is still no outcome. When you just arrived, I wanted to test them on the ‘Walking in the Air’ movement technique skill but the old man without any legs is still able to do it by replacing his legs with his hands huh!”

Now that Wan’Er had cleared some the air, Zhan Bai finally understand some of the situation. But he still did not know what cause these two old men to fight in the first place? Suddenly, he was interrupted by a curious thought and turned to her, “Wan’Er, you say you have been looking for me. Why are you looking for me?”

Wan’Er’s eyes turned starry, her heart was sore and she almost shed tears. She thought, “To save you, I almost lost my life and yet you do not even know huh?”

But she kept hidden her thoughts and said melancholy, “Let me ask you instead. When you are at the Xinglu Tavern and had been wounded by the [Red Dragon with the Blood Hand] with his red sloe blood skill palm, who save you?”

“Oh!” The realization dawned upon Zhan Bai and he said, “It is Wan’Er that saved me! Then you must have seen the [Living Dead Man] too? Why did I not see you when I regain consciousness?”

Wan’Er turned red and now when she recalled her humiliations and ordeal at the dead men dwelling place, she almost cried out…

“You two babies over there! Stop chattering nonstop!” Even though the [Iron Gut Divine Donkey] was in the midst of a dangerous fight, he found the time to shout at them. “Hurry and get away from here! I am going to use my killing masterstroke now!”

“I say!…” The another old man laughed merrily, “Old man that rides a donkey! Enough of the bluff! If you really have any shit masterstrokes, just use it will do! I will surely return you blow by blow!”

This made the [Iron Gut Divine Donkey] furious and suddenly there was sounds of wind and thunderclaps as his palm strength increased in manifolds! On the top of the platform where Zhan Bai and Wan’Er was standing, the wind was extremely strong and they could not find their footings!

Therefore they were forced to jump down from the platform and retreated to the top of a big pine tree that was tens of yards away to continue their conversations and at the same time, were speculators in their fight.

The two old men strokes and stances were simply too astonishing fast. Their windforce was especially strong and powerful. Their martial path was that of the soft yin types and not the earth shattering hard yang types but it could duplicate the power of the hard yang types! Not only that, under the moonlight, they were a blurry image and a twister sprang up from beneath them!

It was hard to believe that there were actually two men inside the twister, competing for martial superiority!

Zhan Bai had been trained in the Orthodox Intricate Formula of the Soul Binder Scripture and moreover, he had his eight wondrous meridians cleared and his eyes, ears were now extremely sharp now. He could see in the dark and moreover he was aided by the moonlight. But he still could not see clearly their intricate strokes and wondrous stances.

As for Wan’Er, she could not see clearly at all.

The old man with the clutches laughed hilariously, “[Iron Guts Divine Donkey], your ‘Wondrous Hand’ skill is just so and so. Do you still have any fresh techniques to bring out for me to appraise?”

This really infuriated Dong Qianli who had been fighting with him over three days. And he really was upset now. “Old freak, don’t be too arrogant yet. Catch my Iron Guts!” And a cold wave that rung a tingling sound rushed towards the old man with the clutches. He had released two powerful secret projectiles of his own invention – Iron Guts.

Although the old man with the clutches were initial shocked, he managed to deflect it and when he regained his composure, he laughed, “This is just a projectile used by little girls and is too easy for an old man like me!”

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] released two more ‘Iron Guts’ and this time, it spin in mid-air before it flew like meteor fire towards him.

“Haha!” The weird old man with the clutches laughed, “It is a little interesting! Old Donkey, this is slightly better than what a little girl is capable of!”

This odd and bizarre style of shooting secret projectiles was totally unheard of and its power could not be described for no one was capable of doing it!

Zhan Bai and Wan’Er were sitting on the thick branch of the pine tree and looking. And they were shaking to the core as they stared wide-eyed as their spirits and souls were carried away by this display. They had even forgot to talk with one another!

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] taunted aloud, “How about trying something even more dangerous so as to bring this game to a higher level of fun?” And it released three Iron Guts with even more startling power as three golden lights blinked from him and flew everywhere in circles towards the old man with the clutches.

This made the old man with the clutches was little panicky as he deflected the Iron Guts constantly as it flew back in circles no matter how many times he could deflect it! But fortunately, he had reached the point of reacting with his will and his body would automatically reacted! Therefore it was not impossible for him to dodge and deflect constantly!

But when the Iron Guts were deflected and went for another round towards the old man with the clutches, he had suddenly vanished from the thin air!

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] was stunned and he composed himself for a second before he withdrawn his Iron Guts.

Then suddenly he had heard a cold and icy voice behind his back, “Your area attacking balls are nothing compared to my ‘Shadow Evasion and Invisibility’ special swiftness movement skill. If not for the fact that I have considered my reputation, you would have been severely injured if I were to strike you!”

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] was solemn for a second before he turned around with his palm extended with an invisible eruption as the surrounding rolled like an angry tsunami.

Suddenly the old man with the clutches cried out in fear as he vanished, “Thunderclaps of the Buddha!”

A powerful tsunami-like windforce sped past from the hand of the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] as it stuck a gigantic pine tree. Not only did it fell the gigantic pine tree with a thunderous sound on the right side of the platform, leaves and dust whirled around non-stop. The thunderclap sounds was like sonic as it echoed throughout the mountains and did not dissipated for quite some time!

Zhan Bai stumbled for words as he excitedly exclaimed, “What an awesome palm force! If a person can practice martial asceticism into such a level, it is really unconceivable and unfathomable!…”

Wan’Er nodded and said, “My father have many proteges under him and many of them topped the list as legendary fighters in the martial fraternity. I often bear witnesses to their duels and the force of their palms could not compare to this awesome power being unleashed!”

‘Your father!” Zhan Bai had suddenly recalled that Murong Han the [Meteor Hand] was among his father’s killers! Therefore he could not help asking, “Your father’s name is Murong Han the [Meteor Hand]?”

Wan’Er battled an eyelid at him and was melancholy, “Obviously you know. Why did you ask huh?”

“Then why are you not a Murong like your father,”Zhan Bai asked, “And is a Zhan instead?”

“Are you really so forgetful or are you pretending to be confused?” Wan’Er unhappily replied. “Didn’t I tell you before that I am following my mother’s clan name?”

“Everyone in the world usually follows their father’s clan name and not their mother’s clan name.” Zhan Bai blabbered out in bewilderment, “Wan’Er maiden, maybe you are not the real daughter of the [Meteor Hand]!”

Wan’Er expressions changed and she furiously said, “You are doubting me! Do you think I will lie to you?”

For awhile, Zhan Bai was too sad for words and he thought, “Wan’Er is such an innocent and kind heart-hearted girl. Moreover she have twice saved my life. If I am going to avenge for my father and kills her father, I wonder how abhor she will feel towards me…”

Wan’Er loved Zhan Bai deeply in her heart or else she would not have secretly left her home and had to endure bitter hardships in search of him.

But Zhan Bai’s questions earlier caused her to be extremely upset therefore she blunt out impolitely to contradict him. Now she saw that he was silence and was furrowing his brows, she assumed that he was angry with her. Therefore she hurriedly added, “Zhan Gege, are you upset with me huh?”

Zhan Bai shook his head and let go of a sight. “It is not that I am angry with you but…just alas!”

Suddenly Zhan Bai paused and grasped aloud for he had suddenly saw that the duel had intensified to such an extend that it had reached the point of life and death!

Wan’Er followed Zhan Bai’s glance and looked at the platform and saw that the two old men were now encircling one another in an extremely slow movement like two cocks fighting.

The duel had progressed from lightning fury attacks to another opposite extreme. It took them ages to unleash an attack! But each attack once it was unleashed echoed through the air like thunderclap and the force released was earth shaking!

Both Zhan Bai and Wan’Er knew instantly what was going on and knew that this type of fighting was based on their vital internal energies. There were no techniques at all. Each blow could shatter rocks and grind it to dust! If it strike a person, it would mean instantaneous death!

Zhan Bai wanted to seek vendetta for his father and he was especially concerned for [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] and hoping for his victory. He recalled his father’s horrible death and knew that given his poor martial skills, it was impossible for him to avenge him.

That was why he wanted to entreat this old man to include him as his protégé. Whether he could avenge for his father, his hope was totally rested upon this old man now.

If [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] were to be defeated now, all his hopes would be dashed. Therefore Zhan Bai was so nervous that his tightened fists broke into cold sweat!

The old man with the clutches was also a top exponent that hardly existed in the mundane world but Zhan Bai had never thought of entreating him as his Master for he carried an air of evil around him. His martial skills did not look orthodox to him and moreover, he would not know about the truth of his father’s death.

Therefore, although both old men did not have any relationship with him, he wished that the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] would be the one that emerged victorious.

Wan’Er was not the least concerned about them and she threw all her heart instead upon Zhan Bai. When she saw that Zhan Bai was shaking and breaking into cold sweats, she comforted him with soft and emotional affections, “Zhan Gege, why are you so nervous? They are all old freaks. No matter what is the outcome, does it matter to us?

As Zhan Bai was totally focusing on the platform, he did not heard Wan’Er honey sweet affections and instead, he pushed her slim body aside and jumped down from the pine tree and headed towards the platform.

“Zhan Gege! It is too dangerous to go!”

Wan’Er was startled and cried out towards Zhan Bai but he did not take notice. Therefore she jumped down from the pine tree and sprang towards him.

At this moment, the two old men were no longer encircling one another but were now facing one another with both their palms extended out. Their internal power and internal vital energies were seen flowing through their hands! Their heads were wisping with hot air and everyone footstep they took left a deep mark three feet into the stone platform!

This was going to be last stage and also the most dangerous part when both their vital internal energies clashed with one another! This life and death situation would instantly be let known soon!

Zhan Bai knew that it was a dangerous contest. The one with the weaker vital internal energies would have his internal organs damaged by the strong vital internal energies and die! If both internal powers equaled one another, the result would be double fatalities!

Therefore he shouted anxiously, “Old Seniors! Is there anything that you cannot sit down and discuss. Why must it end in fatalities for both?”

But they were now in a critical stage and had to be in full focus. Even if they had heard Zhan Bai, they could not reply and remained in their combatant stance.

Now Zhan Bai was extremely worried and he moved forward. His intention was to separated them…

Just when he had taken two steps, Wan’Er pulled him and said, “Zhan Gege, it is unwise for you to go! At this moment, they have exercised their martial powers to its peak and are now surrounded by inertia barrier. Even before you can reach them, you will be jolted by it!…”

Zhan Bai wrangled free from her and said, “I can’t possible bear to see these two old men end up in double fatalities right before my own eyes!” And then he moved forwards.

But when he was about two yards away, he felt an invisible great pressure in front of him, halting him.

Zhan Bai was startled but did not lose hope and continued to force himself forward with all his might. There was a loud thunderclap sound and instead of moving forward, he was forced backward by several steps. He could feel his vital energies and his blood reversing. “So powerful!”

Wan’Er immediately caught hold of him, “Zhan Gege, are you injured?”

Zhan Bai shook his head, “It not serious…”

But before Zhan Bai could finish replying, both old men gave a great earth-shaking shout and there was a huge air explosion and tens of mini whirlwinds sprang out and scattered in all directions!

Both Zhan Bai and Wan’Er was knocked off the ground and was forced to move back by several steps. It took them a while before they had channeled their strength and to get their footings onto the ground.

When they did, they immediately looked at the platform and the scene horrified them!

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] Dong Qianli had turned white and he had blood on his mouth and hair. He was now sitting on the ground with both his eyes shut. It was very obvious he was severely injured.

The another old man was also sitting on the ground with his eyes shut. His face was a ginger yellow, his mouth and edge of his clothing was covered with fresh blood.

It was all too obvious that both old men had sustained serious injuries!

Zhan Bai hurriedly asked as he walked to [Iron Guts Divine Donkey], “Old Senior Dong, are you injured?”

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] did not open his eyes or say a word. It took him a while before he reacted by popping some pills into his mouth. Only then did he open his eyes and he smiled bitterly, “Old freak, are you still alive?”

“Don’t you worry!” The other old man opened his eyes and he too smiled bitterly. “As long as Donkey Old Man did not die, I will definitely not die as well!” And he too took out a bag of powder and swallowed it. “Alas!”

Dong Qianli let go of a long sigh, “Old freak, I have never met my match in my lifetime except for you! You are my worthy strong opponent!”

“The same goes for you!” The another old man exclaimed as well. “I have profess myself the invincible in the martial fraternity but never would I expect to encounter you just before I pass away. Even though both of us can’t live for long but the fight is really absolutely fabulous and immensely satisfying! For a martial person, to be able to die in the hands of martial, is so absolutely gratifying!”

“But,” Dong Qianli said, “How is that I am a total stranger in my impression for you. I have never heard of anyone in the pugilist fraternity talking about you. What is your name? If you can tell me, at least our fight will not be in vain…”

The another old man laughed aloud for awhile even though his laughter had weakened a lot since earlier. “To think you are called the [Divine Donkey]. Have you never heard of the [Divine Ape] before?”

Dong Qianli grasped out and suddenly he saw the light. “You are that from that southern wilderness, from Mount Li Gong, that [Divine Ape] Tie Ling. Your renown had already been known decades ago!”

“Indeed I am!” He said, “Southern Ape, Northern Donkey. Even though we have never met but decades ago, people of the pugilist fraternity have already put our names on par with one another!”

When Zhan Bai and Wan’Er had heard that this was the resounding Tie Ling of the [Divine Ape] fame, they were startled. It was because even though the [Divine Ape] had not appeared or seen in the pugilist fraternity for decades but his fantastic iron deeds were often discussed enthusiastic by the older pugilist generation!

Who would expect to see a legend right before their very eyes! Before they had merely heard of him but had never seen him before. Now that they noticed, with his round face, monkey mouth and a fiery pair of eyes, he did indeed bear resembled a monkey. Even though he looked comical, but they were unable to laugh…

Dong Qianli suddenly laughed aloud, “Actually, decades ago, I have wanted to find you but because I was entangled with too much affairs, I did not get my wish. But who would expect that decades later, I would finally have this opportunity. Now the two of us who are the older generation can finally have our wish and die without regrets!”

[Divine Ape] stared blankly for awhile before he said, “Indeed, before I die, I can finally meet up with the [Divine Donkey] is really my wish but I can’t say it is not without regrets!”

[Divine Donkey] Dong Qianli was startled. “I am almost a hundred. I believe that you are not younger than I am. It is really not an easy thing for us to roam in the iron blades of the pugilist fraternity and survive to this age. Moreover, just before we die, we can even die under the hands of our generation. What is there left to regret for?”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling sadly said, “I am not as lighthearted as you. Just think about it. We are about to die in the wilderness and with no one to pick our corpses. If we have to die, sure we die but are we going to let the vultures and the wild beasts humiliate us? This is not a peaceful death at all!”

[Divine Donkey] Dong Qianli became sad as well, “Take me for example. In my life- time, I am a recluse and spend my time in leisure. I have no sons or daughters, moreover I did not have any protégé disciples too. My bones, it seem, is destined to be fed to the dogs! But you are different. Long ago, I have heard that you have two protégé disciples. Can’t they collect your corpse for you?”

When his protégé disciples were mentioned, [Divine Ape] expressions turned vicious and he hatefully clenched his teeth, “The mere mention of my evil heretic apprentices make me want to eat their flesh alive! Alas! Look!” He pointed at missing legs. “They crippled me and caused me extreme miseries that for decades, I cannot roam the pugilist fraternity freely!”

When Zhan Bai and Wan’Er heard this, they too were filled with indignant at this unrighteousness!

“The benevolent teacher is like one own benevolent father! Is there anyone with such vicious, ungratefulness, so cruel and unscrupulous as to cut off their benevolent teacher’s legs?”

Dong Qianli was even more indignant as he shouted loudly, “Don’t spare those evil heretic apprentices of yours lightly!”

Tie Ling stared at him for a second, “Wah! If not for you, I would have let them die under my clutches and they would not have escaped!”

Dong Qianli looked startled and cried out, “You mean that three days ago, the three men that you almost cornered, are your two evil heretic apprentices! There is a dwarf among them. Who is he?”

[Divine Ape] disappointing said, “That dwarf is their apprentice. If you have not stopped me from killing them that day, I would not be this infuriate with you. Therefore I immediately fought with you. At that time, you may thought that I was beyond reasoning…alas!”

He sighed and was filled with remorse as he said, “At that time, I was really too impatient. Without explaining things, I started to fight with you. When I come to recognize that you are the [Divine Donkey], all the more I am unwilling to let off of such an excellent opportunity to compete with you as I have long wanted that chance. It resulted in their escape. Now that I can’t cleanse these evil heretic apprentices out of my door, when I have died, they would surely plunged the pugilist realm into chaos.”

When he had finished, he kept sighing non-stop.

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] Dong Qianli was also deeply remorseful. “Alas! I was only thinking of saving lives but I have never expected to save the lives of two rotten eggs! Heroics does not pay…”

Chapter Twenty-Five Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:00 am

Chapter Twenty-Six: Who is the Superior Master?

Zhan Bai tried to comfort them by saying, “Now that the misunderstandings have been cleared and both old seniors are severely injured. Why not wait until your injuries have first recovered…”

[Divine Donkey] Dong Qianli stared at him, “Do you think that both of us will still be able to live?”

Zhan Bai was startled.

But [Divine Ape] Tie Ling said instead, “This young boy has a good heart. But we have used beyond our vital energies and our internal organs have been damaged. It won’t be long before we pass away. This is the best time for us to talk before we become too weak to do so!”

Once again, Zhan Bai was shocked and he distressed when he heard that. He became emotional, “Is there really no medicine in the world that we can turn to? Even though I, Zhan Bai lacks the knowledge but if the two elderly seniors would inform me where to find the divine physician and the sacred medicine, junior will make the trip for you to save you…”

Wan’Er interrupted, “That is right! My father has in his possession many such divine panaceas! For example, grand ginseng, divine linzhi etc. There are still many many more! As long as I return home and ask my father for it, I can use it to save you. Moreover, the divine physician grandpa Liang is now residing in my home…”

[Divine Ape] asked all of a sudden, “Young lass, who is your father?”

Without waiting for Wan’Er to reply, Dong Qianli answered for her, “[Meteor Hand] Murong Han!”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling asked, “Is he ranked third among the [Jiangnan Seven Heroes]?”

Dong Qianli said, “Who else would he be?”

Wan’Er with her wide big eyes blinking, asked, “Do you know my father?”

Dong Qianli laughed merrily, “Nowadays, the four martial aristocratic clans have the most resounding fame in the martial fraternity. And your father is one of the topmost exponents. Who in the central plains martial fraternity would not have heard of him?”

[Divine Ape] sighed with regret. “I have not been in the pugilist fraternity for decades. I did not expect that generation would have the ability to dominate the heroes of the fraternity now. I wonder who are the other three martial aristocratic clans?”

“You are really out of touch with realities,” Replied Dong Qianli. “Not only did that generation dominate the entire fraternity now, even their younger generation, their sons have become outstanding people! Currently, there is a folk song that has been circulating throughout the pugilist fraternity; [The Dashing Joy Seeker] Anle, [The Roaming Wanderer] Duanfang, [The heartless Wind] Lingfeng, [The Ever Hospitable] Xiangling. These four verses also represent the Four Young Masters of the Martial Clans. What a pity that you are going to die soon and have no chance to chance upon them anymore!…”

[Divine Ape] stared impatiently, “Old Donkey! First, don’t go to the present yet! You have not even clarified which are the four aristocratic clans yet and now you are mentioning the four young masters of these aristocratic clans! Do you want me to die as a muddle headed ghost?”

Dong Qianli laughed, “Young Master Lingfeng is the brother of this maiden here and he is the son of Murong Han the [Meteor Hand]. Young Master Anle is the son of Yun Zonglong the [Universal Palm], Young Master Duanfang’s father is the [Origin Finger] Sikong Jin and there is Young Master Qilin whose father is the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu! There is still the Conqueror Whip Fan Fei from Zhengjiang, although he is not as influential as the other four but he is still the dominant figure in his area!”

[Divine Ape] nodded his head. “These five people that you have mentioned are all from among the [Jiangnan Seven Heroes]. But what happened to their lead, the [Thundersword] Zhan Yuntian. Why did you miss him out? Unless you want to say that all his aides become the dominant figures of the fraternity while he goes into recluse?”

When Zhan Bai heard that they were talking about his father, his expressions were tormented and he was sorrowful.

But Dong Qianli glanced profoundly at Zhan Bai and replied, “Zhan Yuntian had already died long ago, having been surrounded by tens of top martial exponents!...”

When Zhan Bai had heard this, he had an indescribable grief upon his face and his face was now covered with his tears. He immediately bowed down in front of Dong Qianli to wail, “Will respected senior please enlighten me who are the killers so that I can seek vendetta for my father!...”

[Divine Ape] was equally angry and he shouted aloud with bloodshot eyes, “Is Zhan Yuntian really dead?”

Dong Qianli answered, “Why would I bluff you? Before your very eyes, is his son and he can bear witness to it!”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling looked furiously at Zhan Bai and raised his right hand, seeming to strike Zhan Bai but when he tried to muster his martial power, he found out that his internal vital energies were all scattered and could not be focused together. He let go of a long sigh and put down his hand, “Alas! I didn’t expect that I could not even settle this old debt with the Zhans!...”

He kept sighing hatefully non-stop in grief.

But Zhan Bai did not take notice of the [Divine Ape] and had bowed his head onto the ground, pleading with the elderly Dong Qianli to reveal his father’s killers…

It was only now that Wan’Er was aware that Zhan Bai was the son of the [Thunder Sword] Zhan Yuntian! She was both startled and delightful. Startled because Zhan Bai appeared poor and did not have the appearances that he was from any renowned clans. Delightful because Zhan Bai’s father and her father was among the [Jiangnan Seven Heroes]. She supposed that they had good ties and now their relationship was now one step closer.

But when she saw Zhan Bai was grieving and weeping, she began to panic and pulled Zhan Bai towards her and at the same time doing her best to comfort him…

When the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] saw the resentment from the expressions of the [Divine Ape], he was startled and asked Zhan Bai to stand on his feet first. Then he turned to the [Divine Ape] and asked, “Are there enmity between Zhan Yuntian and you?”

[Divine Ape] let go of a long sigh but refused to say anything.

Dong Qianli asked again, “Zhan Yuntian had already died and we are not going to live as well. Is there anything you cannot say?”

[Divine Ape] sighed again and again, “Buddy, you may not believe me. I thought of myself as the invincible in the entire fraternity but I lost to him. His Heartless Precious Sword defeated me by a single stroke!”

Dong Qianli exclaimed, “I do believe you for even I may not win him…”

This infuriates Tie Ling and he shouted angrily, “Old Donkey! Are you implying that your martial skills are one notch higher than me?”

Dong Qianli did not expect him to be such a chauvinist and so insistent to be superior over everyone.

He had a bitter smile, “If I really want to compare with you, I would not have end up in this state! We are both going to be a dead man soon and yet your temper is as fury as ever. Hurry and continue your story!”

After the [Divine Ape] had calmed down, he continued, “Many years ago, Zhan Yuntian sought me out in my place of recluse in the mountains of Li Gong. He wanted to borrow my most precious treasure; Water Alleviate Divine Pearl. Although he was polite but the Water Alleviate Divine Pearl is Li Gong foundational treasure! How would I have easily lent it to anyone? Moreover, he did not state the reason and just assured me that he would definitely return it and he even further assured me by the fame of the seven heroes of Jiangnan.”

“It was only then that I know he was the lead of the younger generation of pugilists. Therefore, all the more I did not want to lend it to him. It was because if this thing got out to the pugilist fraternity, people would think I was intimated by the [Jiangnan Seven Heroes], therefore that was why I loan him my divine pearl.”

“He then suggested a duel with me. The condition was that if I lost, I would lend him my Water Alleviate Divine Pill. If he lost, I am free to take his life!”

Dong Qianli interrupted, “In the end, you lost to Zhan Yuntian!”

“Will you let me continue instead!” Tie Ling appeared irritated, “We fought for three days and three nights just like you and me. The only difference was, he was not injured at all. At the end of the fierce duel, he just tore a hole in my clothing, just at the front of my chest but he did not hurt me. I knew that he was just being merciful but did you all know that it was worse than death to me! I would rather die than be tormented like this! Therefore I yelled at him, “Zhan Yuntian! Why did you not kill me? Why don’t you kill me!””

Dong Qianli interrupted again, “In the end, Zhan Yuntian still did not kill you!”

“Obviously!” Tie Ling answered, “If he had killed me, I won’t be fighting with you today! But it was precisely that he did not kill me, that I suffered additional pain and torments! I surrendered to him the Water Alleviate Divine Pearl and had an agreement that he was to return me the divine pearl in three years and we were to duel again.”

“After he had left, I sealed myself in total solitaire to practice several legendary divine skills. Just when I had reached the most critical stage of my practice, my two evil heretic apprentices suddenly stole my divine skill manuals and drove me to experience deviation phenomenon and I was forced to cut off both my legs! Not only did they stole my divine skill manuals, they had also seal the entrance of the cave that I was in with a huge boulder, thinking of burying me alive!”

When Dong Qianli had finished listening, he was apologetic, “In the end, Zhan Yuntian did not return the Water Alleviate Divine Pearl to you, am I right to say so?”

Tie Ling clenched his teeth and said, “Zhan Yuntian did not return to sought me out. Even though both my legs were gone but my martial powers remained. After I used my internal power to treat my injuries, I burst out of the cave and return to the pugilist fraternity. First thing I wanted to do, was to find these heretics and cleanse them from my clan. Secondly, I was to seek Zhan Yuntian to avenge for my humiliating defeat and to retrieve my divine pearl! Never would I expect to meet you who is still alive and cause all my dreams and hopes to be dashed! Woes and alas…”

Dong Qianli did not let him continue, “I had stopped you from killing your heretic apprentices, it was all my mistake. But things had come to this stage, even a apology does not happen anymore.”

“But the reason why Zhan Yuntian did not return the Water Alleviate Divine Pearl to you was not because he had retracted his promise. It was because he had died while trying to retrieve some treasures under the lake. When he had emerged from the lake, he was instantly surrounded by tens of top exponents and were killed.”

“As saying goes, the dead can no longer be held accountable. But for us, if you still do not feel convinced, we can still continue our competition!”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling was startled, “You and me, we have used up all our internal vital energies and we are no different from ordinary people now. Moreover, with our injuries, our days are soon numbered. What is there left for us to compete?”

Wan’Er was chirping by the side, “As long as I return home, I will save both of you huh!”

Wan’Er was voided of hidden designs in her heart. Even though what they had said was useless and pointless to both Zhan Bai and her, but she still felt that she could not allow them to die just like this. When she had finished, she pulled Zhan Bai along with her so as to quickly return home to seek help…

Tie Ling was a man of great gratitude and a man that avenge great wrongs as well. When he saw that Wan’Er was not only elegant and lovely, she also had a good heart. He could not control his sentiments and was moved to say, “Little girl, I greatly appreciate your thoughts. I have long thought that the world has already been devoid of good people. It seems that this mindset of mine had to be changed…”

Dong Qianli smiled at Wan’Er, “Maiden, do not be too bothered about us! Even though your father have a lot of expensive and rare medicines but they would not be as effective as the [Divine Ape]’s ‘Prolonging Powder’ and my ‘Rejuvenation Pill’ that we had taken earlier! Years ago, we were called the [Southern Ape and Northern Donkey], we also had another well known nick; [Southern Powder and Northern Pill]. Imagine that if even the [Southern Powder and Northern Pill] would not save us, even if you could invite an immortal, it would still be useless!”

[Divine Ape] nodded in agreement with Dong Qianli.

When Wan’Er saw that they were trying to comfort her, she sobbed, “So you really meant to say, both of you are beyond help?...”

“Maiden, do not sorrow!” Dong Qianli comforted her, “Life and death are predetermined, wealth and power comes from providence. The fact that we can live close to a hundred years is already a great blessing for us from Heavens above. We are not sad at all, so don’t be sad anymore alright?”

Just when [Divine Ape] wanted to say something, Dong Qianli continued to add, “I suddenly have a great idea. Not only will we have someone to collect our corpses for us when we have died but we can also continue our unfinished duel as well!”

[Divine Ape] rolled his eyes, “Sly old man, even if you do not say it aloud, I know of it as well! You want us to teach them our martial powers so that they can substitute us. Asking them to collect our corpses for us is not hard but if you really want to ask them to duel with one another, it is really an impossible thing to accomplish!”

“[Divine Ape]! I am really so impressed by you!” Dong Qianli happily shouted out, “Everyone praises the intelligence of the [Divine Ape] but only today, I am finally convinced of that! But you are simply too smart. You have only thought of the first part but not the second part!”

[Divine Ape] coldly asked, “Why don’t you explain!”

[Iron Guts Divine Donkey] replied, “They look so close and sweet to one another that it is naturally impossible for them to fight to the death. But if we just teach them our martial powers and ask them to make a comparison, it is naturally possible. Whoever successor is the stronger, the superior master will be the victor.”

[Divine Ape] had a strange glow in his eyes, “Then you mean to say, you will choose the guy?”

Dong Qianli answered, “Of course! Zhan Yuntian and you have enmities and you naturally would not choose Zhan Yuntian’s son to be your successor!”

[Divine Ape] looked at Zhan Bai and Wan’Er for a while before saying, “Then you have an advantage. It is obvious that the guy has the more powerful internal power than the girl!”

Dong Qianli exclaimed, “But the girl has the superior swiftness agility and movement! Both have their advantages. You can’t claim who has the advantage!”

[Divine Ape] thought it over and finally said, “Very well! We will decide it this way. But how long can you still live? We must decide upon a date!”

Dong Qianli replied, “I guess it won’t be longer than a hundred days!”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling estimated for awhile before saying, “Very well! Let us decide it then. We leave some allowances just in case for us to view the duel. How about in three months time?”

Dong Qianli said, “That is a promise! Come, let us clap our palms thrice to as agreement!”

And they struggled to get up and clapped their palms. No longer were they powerful, their clapping was ordinary and carried no strength.

When Zhan Bai and Wan’Er had heard that Dong Qianli had described them as close and sweet to one another, they could not help but flushed deeply in red. But when they heard that both old men who was dying, still wanted to prove their superiority, they were startled and stunned for a while…

After they had clapped their hands, they beckoned for them to come over to their side.

Zhan Bai and Wan’Er each took a glance at one another and could not help walking towards them.

Dong Qianli said to Zhan Bai, “Young fellow, follow me!”

And then he started to walk away. But after walking to the edge of the platform, he found out that he could not jump down from the platform, having lost all his internal powers. After looking for a long while, he finally decided that he really could not jump off so he sighed, “Young fellow, I think it is better for you to carry me down instead!”

It was only then that Zhan Bai realized that the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] had really lost all his martial powers. He wondered how on earth would he be able to teach him martial arts? As he wanted to enquiry more on his father’s killers, he did not hesitated at all and carried the elderly senior down the platform.

Dong Qianli then guided him into the recess of the mountains and they entered a secretive cave…

Wan’Er was dumbfounded as she watched Zhan Bai and Dong Qianli disappeared from view. Even after they were long gone, she remained lost in thoughts.

[Divine Ape] had sat down and asked her, “Little girl, so which way do we go?”

It was because his clutches were broken and he felt it was an embarrassing thing to ask her to carry him. Therefore he purposely asked her for her opinion.
Instead Wan’Er flushed and asked him generously, “I don’t think you can walk in this manner. Let me carry you on my back instead! But, where shall we go now huh?”

Wan’Er was not as polite as Zhan Bai but her temperate was just nice for [Divine Ape] for she was very blunt. He laughed, “There are many caves around here. Let us just find one will do. But we should not go too far. Three months later, I will personally be your witness when you defeat the Old Donkey’s successor!...”

Wan’Er paused to think, “I don’t want to! I am not going to stay in these dark and eerie caves for three months! I will definitely not going to do this!”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling was stunned, “Don’t you want to learn any of the rare and unrivalled divine skills?”

Wan’Er replied, “Can’t we do it here, on this platform huh?”

[Divine Ape] replied, “It must be done in secret in case we are being watched by others! Moreover it is also a precaution against distractions. I will even teach you some skills that I myself have not succeeded in practicing. I assure you that you will definitely win the Old Donkey’s successor!” Then he broke into a mysterious laugher.

Wan’Er replied in disbelief, “How could you teach me the skills that even you have not mastered? Moreover your martial powers are lost now and you are injuried…”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling stared at her and suddenly he asked, “Do you want to learn or not?...”

Wan’Er replied, “I don’t want to learn anymore!” And then she turned around and walked away.

[Divine Ape] shouted in panicky for Wan’Er and he was pleading her. “I have already clapped three times with my palm with the Old Donkey. No matter what happens, I must let you learnt all my unrivalled martial skills…”

When Wan’Er saw that he was so genuinely sincere, she turned around. “Then you must follow my wish and let it be here…”

[Divine Ape] seemed to have great difficulties in his face. He thought for a minute before he said, “Outsiders must never allow to know the intricate formula of these unrivalled martial skills. Moreover, we must also prevent outside disturbances to your training. Look at my legs. They served as best example what resulted from derivation phenomenal.”

“I just want to win the Old Donkey’s successor and would never have thought of harming you. If you could carry me into a secretive cave, I would teach you the intricate formulas of my martial skills. Except when you are training inside the cave, I will give you free rein of your time. What do you think of this?”

Wan’Er sighed, “But I really do not have the mood to learn any martial arts. But I could not bear to reject you. I guess for now, this have to do huh!”

Then she carried him around and they went in search of a cave.

Wan’Er found several caves but all these caves do not fulfilled the requirements of the [Divine Ape]. Finally they had reached a big cave and Wan’Er was angry. “No matter what, this cave will have to do! I refuse to carry you furthermore as we search everywhere. It is like we are rabbits that are lost!...”

When Wan’Er thought that they were rabbits, she could not help giggling and she straightened her back and dropped the [Divine Ape] Tie Ling onto the ground.

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling looked around and said, “This cave is not as good as the last two. Moreover the cave entrance is too big. It is possible it may be too windy. Let us…”

Wan’Er impatiently said, “Let us not wait for you to search anymore! I am not going around anymore and that is it! If you are afraid that the cave entrance is too big, I can carry you to the inside of the cave where you can avoid the wind huh!”

And she bent down to help the [Divine Ape] to her back.

Tie Ling of the [Divine Ape] fame let go of a long sighed, “To think that I, Tie Ling the [Divine Ape] havocked the entire fraternity throughout my life, there is nothing that I am afraid of. But when I about to die, I have to suffer the idle temper of this little lass here…”

Wan’Er stood up again and angrily exclaimed, “I am the one that is unwilling huh! Since that is the case, let call it off! I don’t want to learn your unrivaled martial skills and you do not want to suffer my idle temper, we can go our separate ways!”

And she turned and left but [Divine Ape] quickly called out, “Hey! Hey! Little lass! Don’t be so impatience alright? I will let you have your wish, alright?”

Wan’Er paused her steps and said, “Then from now on, stop calling me little lass, little lass! I am Zhan Wan’Er. If you have anything for me, just call out my name!”

“Everything will be according to your commands!” [Divine Ape] nodded his head several times. “This is the first time that I am really afraid of someone!…”

Wan’Er continued, “That not true! You are at least afraid of two persons. One is me, the other is the one that gain victory over you by a sword stroke…”

[Divine Ape] stared for awhile before answering, “I have never been afraid of a second person. With my martial powers, I can easily win Zhan Yuntian. If I continue to practice some of the unrivalled divine skills that I have, I assure you that Zhan Yuntian cannot even held his ground against one stroke of mine..."”

“Enough! Enough!” Wan’Er said, “Stop blowing your own trumpet! I afraid that you can’t even win over a strong guy without any martial foundation now huh!”

This silenced the [Divine Ape] and there was a murderous flash in his eyes. And this increased his hatred for the [Divine Donkey]…

Wan’Er knew that she had overdone it with her words. When she saw his torturous look, she could not bear it in her heart anymore. She bent down her body, “Let me carry you inside where there is no wind. Forget about the past.”

[Divine Ape] did not say a word more and Wan’Er carried her into the deep recess of the cave.

The weird thing about this cave was that even though the entrance was not especially large but the tunnels inside were rather deep. Wan’Er walked for tens of yards but still, she could not find a single place that could shelter them from the wind. The winding tunnels were confusing, dark and there was strong wind whispering in all directions. It was in fact blowing stronger in the inside than the entrance!

At this moment, both knew that something was not right but they did not say a word.

By now the [Divine Ape] had known that this beautiful young maiden that was carrying him, had a good heart and was naïve but she was also headstrong in her emotions. If he was to open his mouth and ordered her to turn around, not only would she refuse, she would also abandon him and just left.

Since he could not move, that would indeed be a most terrible fate. Therefore even though he could tell that the situation was alarming but he tried his best not to speak aloud to her.

As for Wan’Er, since she was the one that insisted on using this cave for martial practice, she felt awkward if she suddenly changed her mind. Therefore she did not voice out her concerns too and in fact, increased her martial powers on her legs so that she could continue her pace.

Wan’Er’s possessed excellent swiftness movement and agility skills. It was because the Murong Clan possessed an unrivalled swiftness movement skill called ‘Walking in the Air Miracle’. Even though there was little light and the terrain was sometimes steep and uneven, she could still hop like she was flying and increased her pace forward.

After moving for several hours, Wan’Er estimated that they were several miles deep inside the mountain cave.

Both began to have their hesitations but did not voice out.

Wan’Er began to slow down her movements and suddenly she gave a startled cry. “Oh alas!”

Now that the [Divine Ape] had lost his internal power, his eyesight was not as formerly. So when Wan’Er cried out, he asked hurriedly, “What is the matter?”

Wan’Er exclaimed, “Why is there a dead man here?”

Indeed, there was a blood-dripping corpse here standing against the wall! But on closer inspection, they realized that this corpse’s heart had been pierced by a dart but was not a dart, resembled an edged secret projectile but was not exactly an edged weapon. It looked clean and glow a bright blue and they knew that it was cloaked with a venomous poison!

The secret projectile had nailed the dead man onto the stone walls and such was the force that it was driven several inches deep!

Wan’Er said,” Judging from the blood, the man had just died. I wonder what sort of secret projectile is this?”

[Divine Ape] took a look and shook his head, “Even an old man like me had not seen it before. But the throwing force of the person that uses this secret projectile is indeed powerful and this secret projectile has been cloaked with poison!”

Wan’Er asked again, “Then do elderly senior know of this man that was killed?”

[Divine Ape] took another look at this dead man who was dressed in a light golden silk robe. His dead face looked fierce and covered with sweat. On his head, there was a warrior type of bandage. He knew instantly this dead man must be a pugilist.

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling shook his head. “I have not been roaming the pugilist fraternity for many years, especially these few decades, I have not been in the pugilist fraternity at all. I do not know this man here.”

When Wan’Er saw how terrible this man had died, she felt that there was hidden malevolent air that was lying in wait around here. Even though she was scared, she refused to manifest her fears. “I think the murderer must be hiding here. Elderly Senior, do we still want to move forward?”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling laughed, “It is for maiden to decide. It is not my wish to come into this cave in the first place!”

Wan’Er ignored him in a fit of anger and continued to move forward. Soon after, they chanced upon two more corpses and both were killed by the same type of secret projectiles as well!

Even though Wan’Er was frightened and startled at the sight but she was having fits with the [Divine Ape], therefore she continued to walk in front, irregardless of any dangers.

[Divine Ape] was getting worried. Now that his martial powers had been lost and this little lass was too inexperience. In this dark cave, if someone were to conceal themselves and suddenly sprang an attack upon them, they would surely perished!”

After walking for awhile, they saw a stone chamber in front of them. Wan’Er hurried her steps towards it.

“Be wary!…” Even before the [Divine Ape] could finish his warning, Wan’Er had had walked into the stone chamber.

Suddenly in the darkness of the stone chamber, a pair of black hands appeared without a sound in front of her.

Wan’Er cried out in shock, “Oh my!”

Chapter Twenty-Six Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:00 am

Chapter Twenty-Seven: Young Master Duanfang

Wan’Er was so startled that she hurried backwards with her hands upright…

Even though the [Divine Ape] had lost his martial powers but he had a rich experience as an old pugilist. He called out to Wan’Er, “Wan’Er, do not panic! This is just another dead person!”

When Wan’Er had taken a careful look, she realized that it was really a dead man. And on the ground was a sword. She deducted that this man must be hiding behind this entrance waiting to ambush someone but his target had avoided his sneak attack and used a heavy hand technique and killed him instead.

This dead man had an inch thick hole in his chest and he had died instantly. Even though the assailant had left, they could see that his martial style was not only perfect and bordering upon the supernatural!

Inside the stone chamber, lying besides the chamber wall was another dead corpse. The dead man wielded a thick brush and there was another brush on his chest too. Like the dead man at the entrance, both of them had a terrible vestige on their faces. Even before the dead man with the dead brush could execute any move with his brush, he was killed by a heavy hand technique.

[Divine Ape] looked solemn as he said, “It seemed like they were killed by the Impervious Golden Finger, One Finger Flicker or similar skills. The summit of this assailant’s martial powers had not only reached the peak and to the most extreme utmost as well!”

“Oh my huh!” Once again, Wan’Er gave another startled cry. “Elderly Senior, look, there are two chests of treasures here…”

Wan’Er pointed at two iron chests that were already opened and there were all kinds of rare precious stones and jewelry that gave a wondrous glow.

Even though the [Divine Ape] was weird in behavior but he was actually a true hero of the pugilist fraternity even though he acted weird. Therefore he was not aroused by greed by these treasures.

As for Wan’Er, as she came from the four aristocracy clans, the treasures that she had seen in her house was so exceedingly that she did not put those two chests of treasures on her mind.

Wan’Er put the [Divine Ape] down and walked to inspect the treasures. These treasures did not look ordinary and all the pearls were all as big as a longan fruit. Even the diamonds were huge too. There were Jasper, green Jade, lapis stones etc. All these precious stones were extremely rare and worth a hefty amount. It was comparison to the treasures at home.

Then she had a sudden thought and was stunned, “Are these treasures stolen from my home?”

“Wan’Er!” [Divine Ape] called out for her, “Let just stay here for you to practice your skills!”

Wan’Er was interrupted from her thoughts by the [Divine Ape] and she thought over a moment before exclaiming. “I am not going to stay with two dead men huh!”

[Divine Ape] said, “What does it matter? If you really so dislike them, you can simple threw them out to feed the vultures! That is so easy to accomplish!”

Wan’Er looked even tenser than ever. “You be the one that is going to throw them out, I am not going to do it!”

[Divine Ape] smiled bitterly and said, “If I could still move, why should I still need you to carry me?”

Wan’Er added, “Then let us not wasted our time arguing over this. No matter what, I am not going to touch them. Let us go then to other places!”

Therefore she tossed the precious jewelry back into the chest and carried the [Divine Ape] out of the stone chamber.

After walking for awhile, they found an entrance leading to the outside. Judging by the rays of the sun, they had been in that cave for four hours!

[Divine Ape] had fought with the [Divine Donkey] for three days and three nights. As they were highly imbued with a powerful martial level earlier, they did not feel exhaustion.

But after the duel with Dong Qianli and after a long lengthy period, he was feeling extremely exhausted and thirsty now. It was the effects of his Prolonging Powder that fought off the fatigue till now.

So when he came out into the open and saw that there was a stream flowing out of a mountain cave, he could not resist shouting while on Wan’Er’s back. “Water! Water! I want to drink some water!”

Actually Wan’Er was also thirsty and hungry and so they immediately started to quench their thirst in wild excitation…

Suddenly they heard a clear voice calling out toward them. “Rather thirst to death than drink from this spring! Since both of you have the guts to enter the Valley of the Lost Souls, surely you have heard of this proverbial saying?”

Both the [Divine Ape] and Wan’Er was startled and lifted their heads. On top of a small slope, stood a handsome and young man.

This young man was tall, handsome and was dressed in an ordinary clothing, looking more like a farmer.

[Divine Ape] stared at him in rage, “A young boy should not babble groundlessly! If you try to scare us intentional, I shall let kill you and shred you to pieces!”

Wan’Er thought it was funny that the [Divine Ape] was still capable of such haughty big words now that he could not move anymore. From the eyes of this young man, Wan’Er could tell that his martial abilities were above average. If the young man could just kick him, he would be rolling in pain for half a day long…

Wan’Er actually started to giggle as she spat the water out of her mouth as the more she thought about it, the funnier she thought it would be.

The handsome young man had taken noticed of Wan’Er and he was stunned. Her facial expressions were so beautiful that she looked like a fairy and a sense of covertness appeared on his face. But when he saw that Wan’Er had just spat out some water as she continued to giggle, he exclaimed in astonishment, “If you do not believe, look over at that side!”

He pointed to the direction of the upstream of this spring. A white wooden tablet was laid on top and written on it was the inscription: There is poison in this spring and in seven steps, it will dissolve your intestine. Do not drink of it!

Wan’Er expressions changed instantly into shock. “Oh my! I have already drink quite a lot! What shall I do?”

The [Divine Ape] remained unmoved as he coldly said, “Wan’Er, do not be anxious. How do you know that he is not making a fools out of us?”

The young man exclaimed, “I have never bluff anyone. My kind warnings are from the bottom of my heart. If you do not believe, then so be it!”

[Divine Ape] looked at Wan’Er and laughed, “How about it? Am I right? I have guessed as much that he is trying to terrify us. If this spring is really poisonous, why is it that after we have drunk so aplenty, why is that we do not feel anything amiss in our intestines?”

Wan’Er supposed that he was right. She too, had drunk aplenty from this spring and her stomach was as lively as ever. She did not feel like she was being poisoned! She secretly praised the [Divine Ape]. He was after all much more experience than she was and would not get tricked so easily…

But the young man replied once again. “The poison in this spring is really special. It won’t cause discomfort and is undetectable. But once a person starts to move, in no more than seven steps, the person will surely die as a result of a broken intestine!…”

[Divine Ape] began to laugh aloud. “In the past, Cao Zhi composed a poem in seven steps and now, an old man like me would have to take seven steps before I die of a broken intestine. Isn’t it just nice for me to compare myself with the ancient folk? But it is a pity that I do not have any legs. If I really have one, I would really like to try to take this seven steps and see if it is really true.”

Wan’Er said, “You do not legs but I have. Not to mention just seven steps, even if it is seven hundred steps, we still have to go. Now that we have drink to our fill, it is time for us to leave and attend to our matters!”

As she finished, she began to carry the [Divine Ape] and started to leave…

But the young man was startled and he floated like a breeze and was in front of Wan’Er in an instant. “Maiden, please do not force yourself. I am telling the truth and will definitely not try to fool the both of you. This spring is called the ‘Mercury Spring’. To say that it would break the intestine in seven steps may be a little too exaggerated. It was because the spring contains mercury and if a person were to start walking, the mercury inside the body will react even faster and hastened the damage done to the intestine. But luckily, I have the antidotes for it and would like to make a gift to both of you...”

But even before Wan’Er could say anything, the [Divine Ape] had grown impatience and waved his hand to shout, “Get lost! Stop blabbering non-stop! Even if the water is not poisoned but if we really accept your poison in the antidote, we are really finished…”

Although Wan’Er thought that this young man did not look like a bad person but he was a stranger to her. So she did not accept his kind offer to give them the antidotes.

And she turned around to leave.

But who would have expected that just when she started to hop forward, she felt a sudden pain in her stomach. She was so painful that she fell from the mid-air. It was a good thing that she was well honed in the ‘Walking in the Air Miracle’ swiftness movement agility technique that was only taught to the Murong Clan that she managed to land safety on her feet.

Wan’Er beautiful face turned ashen and she was feeling awfully painful and uncomfortable. She cried out in shock, “Oh my huh! Elderly Senior, we have been poisoned!…”

[Divine Ape] Tie Ling who had lost his martial powers was faring a lot worse and he was so filled with uncontrollable pain that he did not even heard Wan’Er. In fact, he had fainted.

“Maiden!” The handsome young man rushed forward with concern, “Now you believe that I am telling no tall tales. Here is the antidote. It is because that you take it now!”

Wan’Er took the antidote and popped it into her mouth. In an instant, her pain was relieved and she felt refreshed. When she had recovered from her terrible pain, she began to look at the young man with gratifies in her heart.

The young man found great comfort in her eyes and from her eyes, he began to think that he would endure any indignant just for her. Therefore he put out another bag of antidote and handed it over to her, “This is for the unconscious old man. Have him take it before it is too late!”

Wan’Er had started to trust him and therefore she took the bag of antidote and poured it into the mouth of the unconscious Tie Ling.

After awhile, Tie Ling began to shout aloud, “The pain is really unbearable!…”

“Thank you very much huh!” When Wan’Er saw that the [Divine Ape] was saved as well, she began to thanks him profusely. “I have not even ask for your name yet. Please forgive me for not being polite huh!”

“Maiden, you are indeed too humble!” The young man said, “I’m Sikong Changjing!…”

Instantly Wan’Er had a surprise on her face. “You are that Young Master Duanfang? You are one of the Four Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity? The one that everyone call the [The Roaming Wanderer] Duanfang?”

The young and handsome man laughed, “Indeed I am! But it only because the friends in the pugilist fraternity have thought of me too highly and placed me on par with the other three Young Masters!”

Wan’Er could not help staring at this beautiful young man and was extremely touched by his kind gesture.

Even though he was in an ordinary clothing but it could not hide his beautiful bearing. He may look humble but was no coward. This only brought forth his generous bearing and his good looks. He seemed like a heavenly aura that the heavens and the earth had created.

Wan’Er could feel her heart beating. She thought to herself. “There is really such a beautiful and handsome man in this world!…”

And then she suddenly remembered that Zhan Gege was her first love. So how could she have shifted her attention to another? She flushed and slowly avoided eye contact with him. She began to lower her head…

Even as Wan’Er was startled at the beauty of this Young Master Duanfang, he too, was bowed over by her unrivalled grace and beauty that he was totally bewitched by her.

The first time he saw her giggle, was like the moon that cast hope and light in the darkness. She was not only alluring and sexy, she did not look ordinary as well. Her big eyes were like clearer than spring, her long hair like clouds, her body as slim as a leaf, her skin was white as snow and as smooth as polished jade.

Especially that excellent beauty of her air was like intoxicating spirit that seemed to come from nature itself. She was wholly natural and extremely pleasing to look at. This is something that an ordinary person did not have or as much as they tried, they could not duplicate it.

Indeed, Young Master Duanfang who thought that of all the countless beauties that he had seen, he had never seen one as perfect as her.

Especially when her bright crystal eyes were looking at him, her eyes were watery and had so much expressions, so noble and affectionate yet carried no lust…he was stunned and his mind began to travel far away…

Their glances did not fool the experienced old pugilist [Divine Ape] even though it was brief. He was a peculiarity old man and he was not used to seeing this sort of thing. Therefore when he interrupted with a great shout. “Wan’Er! Now that you have already thank him, it is time for us to leave!”

Wan’Er flushed but did not say a word.

Young Master Duanfang said, “Now that I know your name but I do not know you come from. And as for this elderly old man, how shall I address him? I wonder if it convenient for you to tell me?”

Before Wan’Er could reply, the [Divine Ape] stared at him and rushed to speak. “Young fellow, don’t you think that by displaying a little kindness, you can expect anything from us. If you continue to pester, do not blame me for turning ugly!”

Wan’Er stared at him hatefully before saying, “Why are you so fierce? Young Master Duanfang has just save our lives. Moreover he has also been polite to us. Even if he were impolite to us, we must not repay kindness with a hatred huh!”

Then she turned to Young Master Duanfang and said, “I have no relationship with this elderly senior at all. I just happen to be with him under coincident circumstances. My family name is Zhan and I stay at the Baotu Manor in Jinan. When Young Master is free, you can come to my home to play for a few days…”

When Wan’Er had introduced herself, Young Master Duanfang was shocked into interrupting, “Are you a relative of the Master of the Murong Manor?”

Wan’Er laughed, “That is my father huh!”

Once more, Young Master Duanfang was surprised. “But…your surname is a Zhan?..”

[Divine Ape] was growing really impatience and he shouted loud. “Young boy! Have you have enough already?! If you keep on blabbering, do not blame me when the time comes!”

Wan’Er was unhappy that he was scolding Young Master Duanfang.

But Young Master Duanfang gave a smile and remarked, “It seems from your confused and lifeless eyes, elderly senior is not only severely injured and is also not far away from death. I am surprise that you still have such a fury temper?…”

This further infuriated the [Divine Ape] as his temper exploded. He stared and shouted at him, “Indeed you have an excellent eye-sight! But even if my vital energies have been dispersed, I could still take your filthy life away easily! Now take this ‘Afloat in the Southern Seas’!”

Young Master Duanfang was taken aback when he suddenly heard the elderly old man exclaiming aloud, “Now take this!”

Wan’Er was even more startled as she thought, “This peculiar old man has lost all his martial powers and yet he could still challenge and fight?…”

So she turned back and looked at the [Divine Ape] who still remain on the ground.

He was extending his fists out and exclaiming, “If I use this stance ‘Afloat in the Southern Seas’ and suddenly attack and hit you hard in the left and right side of your ears, at your Cang Xue fatality point. There are truths in falsehoods and there are falsehoods in truths. If you do not avoid it, then you will surely die for the Cang Xue is a person fatal accupoint point. As long as my windforce could brush against your Cang Xue, you will die instantly!”

“Even if you want to avoid it, as long as I turned my arms towards your Xin Yu fatal point with my left hand and my right hand towards your Shen Men fatal point, no matter if you turn left or right, you will still die!”

“If you think you can stand a chance against my ‘Vitality Energy Inertia Force’ that I had so painstakingly trained for the past sixty years, you may stand a chance if you use the ‘Follow the Cloud and See the Sun’ stance and beckon attack stroke with attack stroke.”

“Then I would withdrawn both my fists and extended it wide into the ‘Suck’ intricate formula. Not only would you fail to in your attacking stance as your attack voided itself and when I once again extended my fists, I will have struck you directly in your chest! Now tell me, how many filthy lives do you still have if I simply use a ‘Afloat in the Southern Seas’?”

Even though the [Divine Ape] had lost his martial powers but Wan’Er and Young Master Duanfang were secretly startled for the method he described could really cause them unable to parry and unable to dodge!

Especially for Young Master Duanfang, he was now sweating profusely from cold sweat as he recounted the scene when he was being attacked by the ‘Afloat in the Southern Seas’. He was proud of his martial achievements and was full of self-confidence until now…no matter how he used his imagination, he could see no way out.

In fact, the attack was so real to him that he imagined the fists and windforce coming towards him in a furious manner. He could not dodge it. Even if he wanted to counter-attack, his strength was sucked and channeled off, there was a stroke beneath another layer of stroke…he was absolutely terrified and his face was covered with sweat.
He murmured, “Just need only one stroke, I am already dead…”

But Wan’Er had a brainstorm all of a sudden and she chirped, “There is still a way to evade this stance. As long as you jump upward, you can evade it. Furthermore, you can still use the…”

But the [Divine Ape] laughed, “There is no need for the furthermore. Why don’t you ask him even if he jump upwards, can he still avoid the ‘Afloat in the Southern Seas’?”

Young Master Duanfang shook his head. “Jumping upward and jumping downward makes no difference! This masterstroke is simple too powerful. I am grateful for elderly senior for showing mercy upon me. I take my leave now!”

He raised his hands to bow and then sprang away. In just two to three hops, he disappeared from view in the mountains!

Wan’Er was startled to see Young Master Duanfang disappeared without a trace. She turned around and said to the [Divine Ape], “Elderly Senior, you are really something. Just mere words alone, you can fight off the famous Young Master Duanfang huh!”

[Divine Ape] replied her proudly. “Wan’Er, do not have disbelief. As long as learn all my intrinsic martial formulas, you can disdain the entire fraternity already!”

Wan’Er hummed unhappily. “Even if I learnt one hundred percent of your skills, I am still unable to win any old man that rides a donkey!”

[Divine Ape] was so angry that he began to cough aloud. “Little lass, you do not have to incite me! Till now, there is still no outcome between that Old Donkey and I! Furthermore, we are still settling for an outcome and I have full confidence that I am going to be the winner!”

“Forget about it!” Wan’Er remained unhappy. “What if I refuse to learn any martial skills from you? Moreover, what if I really did learn your skills but refuse to compete with my Zhan Gege? Then how are you going to be the winner?”

[Divine Ape] was stunned and he exclaimed in disappointment. “How can you have broken your promise to an old man like me? Once again, you choose to back off at the last minute!”

Wan’Er chuckled for awhile before replying, “Once again, you are spinning your own tales. When did I ever promise you? All along from the start, you are the writer and the actor…”

[Divine Ape] had a great transformation in his expressions. “You mean to say, you are not learning any martial arts from me?”

“Of course I am not going to learn!”

Wan’Er decided to make it clear to him. “Even if the Donkey Old Man and you equaled one another but you are not invincible. You can’t disdain the entire fraternity because Zhan Yuntian the [Thunder Sword] still win you over by a sword stroke…”

[Divine Ape] yelled aloud, “It is so infuriating!” And he spat out blood and his body arced behind…

Chapter Twenty-Seven Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:01 am

“Do you know how did the Four Martial Aristocratic Clans come to dominate the entire Fraternity instead of the current major orthodox clans?”
“It was because several years ago, there was a major catastrophe! Thousands of top martial exponents from the Major Orthodox Clans, the Trial Leaders of the Pugilists Fraternity and even the Heretic Clans were all almost exterminated by a mysterious lady!”
“She killed them all in a duel?”
“No! She was surrounded by the thousands of top exponents from the entire fraternity and she almost exterminated them all!”
“That is impossible! No human could possible could be capable of such feats!”
“The good news is that the older pugilists won this catastrophe fight but at a most terrible cost! Till now, they did not totally recover.”
“The bad news is, she escaped…”

Chapter 28: The Truth Revealed

After Zhan Bai took the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] to a highly secretive cave, he was taught the unique unrivalled ‘Thunderclaps of the Buddha’ palm skill that originated from the Western Region. He also told him the circumstances that led to Zhan Yuntian’s death.

Zhan Yuntian the [Thunder Sword] was not only highly skilled, he was also impossible strong. Furthermore, he was also a great hero that was above board. With his Heartless Precious Sword, he roamed the entire fraternity as a knight errant and was invincible.

Because he had always been very fair, and his renown was so resounding, pugilists from both the orthodox clans and the heretic clans were respectful to him. As he was always in an impatient mood to do good deeds and would wander everywhere, he had saved many lives and made a lot of friends. But he had also offended a lot of wicked people and had a lot of enemies.

The most unexpected thing that happened was that he was murdered when he was ambushed by his very own buddies and not by his enemies!

He had six buddies and together, they were called the Seven Heroes of Jiangnan by the people in the pugilist fraternity.

While Zhan Yuntian was a hero with a generous spirits and an iron gut. He was not afraid to die if it means he could perform a righteousness act.

But his buddies did not think it in this way. They had their own plans and were selfish. Often they had accompanied him, braving life and death with him and often were not rewarded for their ‘good deeds’. Therefore they were unsatisfied and displeased in their hearts.

Moreover Zhan Yuntian was lofty, haughty and was the decision-maker all the time. He was only concern with righteousness and was unconcerned about what his buddies were thinking. Therefore they were getting more and more dissatisfied with him. It was their fear of his highly martial levels that stopped them from opposing him in public.

What’s more, Zhan Yuntian’s actions were above-board and were indeed righteous. So how could they have the nerve to voice out their selfishness? Moreover as their renown and fame increased in the pugilist fraternity, they found it embarrassing to dispute hotly with their leader.

It so happened that the [Meteor Hand] Murong Han had found a secret map in a highly secretive dungeon in the mountains. From the clues given in the secret map, he knew that a thousand year treasure hoard was hidden under Lake Dongting and the riches were so untold that it could make him unsurpassed wealthy!

Murong Han was extremely happy for he had been roaming the fraternity for half of his life. If only he could have the treasures for himself, he would not have need to risk his life anymore in the dangerous pugilist fraternity.

But the location of the treasure hoard had somehow been made known and when he reached Lake Dongting, there were already several top exponents lying in wait.

As a matter of fact, there were rumors that the thousand year old treasure hoard contained three legendary treasures; the Water Ascension Jade, the Immortal Golden Cinnabar and the Epitome Martial Chronicles that contained the most powerful martial techniques ever!

When Murong Han learnt of the rumors, he was startled and at the same time, extremely delighted. Delightful because the treasure map was in his hands. Startled because he did not know how the news of the treasure hoard was leaked.

When he saw that the Lake Dongting was occupied by numerous top exponents, he knew that it was impossible for him to lay his hands upon the treasures.

The most important part was, even though he had the treasure map but he did not know how to swim!

Left without a choice, he decided to discuss it with the [Seven Heroes of Jiangnan].

Of course when he was with them, he did not let them know of his original intention to have the treasures all to himself. He told them how he accidentally got his hands on this secret treasure map. As he disdained riches, so he decided to share it with his alliance buddies.

But he was dumbfounded and flabbergasted when Zhan Yuntian decided to retrieve the treasure and to donate it to the people in the area who had been hard hit by natural disasters!

So tragedy was the natural disaster that people were so hungry that they had to feed upon human flesh or else they would die of starvation. Even the government had no means to help. Every day, thousands of people died of starvation.

The righteous and good hearted Zhan Yuntian therefore decided to retrieve the treasures and to exchange it for food for the people.

Murong Han was shocked and once again, he got no rewards for his contributions! After all, it was so hard for him to get his hands on this secret treasure.

But still he had not given up hope yet. He could give up the riches but not the three legendary treasures…

But the other five thought that if they went under the lake to retrieve the treasures under the watchful eyes of so many top exponents, it was too risky. Moreover, they had to risk their lives for unknown strangers, it was something that they did not want to do willingly. Therefore they persuaded Zhan Yuntian to abort his plan.

But Zhan Yuntian considered it a righteous thing to do and still insisted on trying the people. He then suggested to split the three legendary treasures to the other exponents so that they would not interfere in his plan to save the people.

When Murong Han heard that he could not even keep the three legendary treasures, together with the other six, they decided to abort the plan to retrieve the treasure hoard. But once Zhan Yuntian decided upon a matter, he would never back off nor would he give up so easily. Brushing aside their objections, he insisted on retrieving the treasure hoard.

Even though Zhan Yuntian had made it clear to the other pugilists that he was not interested in the three legendary treasures but in the riches that could be used to save the unfortunates. But once the three legendary treasures had been retrieved, there would bound to be chaos as everyone from the orthodox clans to the heretic clans would surely try to lay their claims.

This gave Murong Han, whose heart had grown cold an opportunity to use his fame as the [Seven Heroes of Jiangnan] to lay a claim to the three legendary treasures as well.

Therefore they contacted everyone from the entire fraternity and appointed a time for the treasure hoard to be retrieved.

Among the seven heroes of Jiangnan, only [Silver Fan] Liu Zonghou was an expert in deep water diving. But after two days and two nights of trying, Liu Zonghou sustained severe internal injuries. It was because the depth of the lake was several hundreds yards in depth! The pressure increased as the depth increased!

Even Liu Zonghou who was so thoroughly expert in diving almost lost his life. Many top exponents who thought highly of their swimming and diving skills tried to retrieve the treasure hoard but they all ended dead or severely injured even before they could hit the bottom of the lake!

As time passed, many of the top exponents gave up hopes on retrieving the treasure hoard and began to scatter. Even the seven heroes of Jiangnan had also lost hope.

After a period of five to six years, people in the martial fraternity began to forget about this incident. But Zhan Yuntian happened to know that in the Yunnan Region, the [Divine Ape] Tie Ling had a water restraining pearl that was called the Water Alleviate Divine Pearl.

Zhan Yuntian thought that if he could borrow this Water Alleviate Divine Pearl, he could then retrieve the treasure hoard.

Therefore he went to Mount Li Gong and dueled with the [Divine Ape] for three days and nights and finally he managed to borrow the pearl and rushed to meet his buddies and to retrieve the treasure hoard.

But he was ambushed by his six buddies and was killed!

This time round, not many people know of the [Jiangnan Seven Heroes]’s plan to retrieve the treasure hoard and when Zhan Yuntian was killed by them, no one in the fraternity had a clue.

Many years had passed since that incident and from that point onwards, the entire fraternity had since been dominated by the five buddies who bribed the top exponents of the entire fraternity with their wealth and power. That was how the four martial aristocratic clans came into existence.

As for [Silver Fan] Liu Zonghou, he was rumored to have died overseas. Perhaps it was because he had felt remorse in killing his swore brother?

Zhan Yuntian who had disappeared from that point onward was believed to have been killed by his enemies in the pugilist fraternity.

Very few people know of this matter. Even Zhan Yuntian’s best friends like Lei Zhenyuan and [Shadowy Divine Thief] Hua Qingquan and many others who had spend many years searching for the truth, searched in vain….

Finally Dong Qianli said, “After many years of searching for the truth through various means, I have finally found out the truth. If the [Divine Ape] had not revealed that he had lent his Water Alleviate Divine Pearl to your father, I would never have guessed how on earth did he manage to retrieve the thousand year treasure hoard….”

Zhan Bai was covered with his own tears as he listened to the accounts that led to his father’s death. His tears were flowing non-stop with grief that it became blood.

Dong Qianli sighed deeply when he saw how grief-sicken Zhan Bai was. “It is a pity that in my moment of foolishness that I had dueled with the Old Monkey and resulted in double fatalities for both of us. If not, I would surely aid you and help you to avenge the wrongs. But I am dying soon and may not teach you much.”

“Now that I still have a breath, I still you have better suppressed your grief and focus all your concentration for I am going to explain to you some of the intricacy formulas of these unrivalled martial skills!”

Zhan Bai said, “Elderly Senior, you are right. A hero should not shed. I am not going to grief anymore. I will be filled with indignant instead! Elderly Senior, please continue, I am all ears now!”

Therefore [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] began to explain the intricacy formulas of the uppermost martial concepts. He explained to him how to use all the strokes and their usage and the theory behind one how to achieve victory over his opponents.

It was a good thing that Zhan Bai had a good martial foundation and the aid of the Soul Binder Sacred Manual. This caused his internal power to increase tremendous!

Even though Dong Qianli’s skills were extremely difficult to understand for the essence of his unrivalled skills were boundless and difficult to grasp, Zhan Bai learnt them in one shot and his pace of learning was godlike.

You can even say, if there was something for Zhan Bai to learn, he would surely grasp it!

This astonished the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] and he was utterly delightful. This further increased his interest and eagerness to teach Zhan Bai, so much that he disregarded his own health and put himself in grave danger to teach him all his martial achievements and know how!

But it is a pity, times flies and ninety days had passed. The mortally injured Dong Qianli ignored his injuries and taught Zhan Bai day in and night out. He did not spend his time on recuperating and spent all his energy and efforts to teach and train Zhan Bai. And now, he had reached his limit!

In the past, Zhan Bai had searched high and low for a brilliant master but he failed to find any. Only a peculiar but a good man, Lei Zhenyuan, had given him a wondrous book to study but he had to figure out the meanings in the book himself.

Now that he had a chance to acknowledge a highly sough after elderly senior Dong Qianli as his master, he was not only grateful but he had also pay great attention and it was golden words to him. You could even say, Zhan Bai eagerness to learn was so strong that except when it was time for him to eat and drink, he was totally immersed in martial. He also did not notice that Dong Qianli was getting weaker everyday.

During these three months, Zhan Bai managed to comprehend eighty to ninety percent of all the skills of the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey]!

But Dong Qianli was now breathing his last and he said to Zhan Bai. “It is a good thing you have that world most wondrous scripture. If you continue in your practice, very soon, your achievements will even exceed me. Now that our destiny with one another is going to end very soon, it is time for you to go…” And he closed his eyes.

Zhan Bai was startled, “Elderly Senior, you…”

Dong Qianli opened his eyes once more. “Do not worry about me. Remember, in your zeal to avenge your father, do not be too rush. First thing you need to do is to train hard. Befriends the heroes of the fraternity and then reveal the truth of your father’s death to them and then…”

Suddenly there was a shout from the outside that interrupted Dong Qianli. “It must surely be there! From the look of this cave, it is obviously there are people inside!”

And then, several shouts were heard, “Let search! Let go in! Go…”

And Zhan Bai could hear the footsteps of the intruders rushing into the cave.

Zhan Bai could tell that the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] was dying now and he was afraid that the elderly senior might be disturbed so he took a few steps towards the entrance and shouted. “Who is that outside? Stop making all these noisy display…”

But before Zhan Bai could finish, there was a great shout. “Attack!”

And countless bright and piercing secret projectiles burst through the air generating a strong windforce flew towards Zhan Bai!

Zhan Bai was furious when the intruders threw secret projectiles into the cave without any explanations. He waved his palms and sent three flying darts flying with bright sparks into the cave walls!

Under the tutelage of the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey], Zhan Bai could easily control his internal powers at will now. This ‘Waving Metals into the rock’ technique could easily have shook the pugilist fraternity with deafening outcries!

Zhan Bai was disgusted by the attackers’ ruthlessness. As Zhan Bai waved one hand to deflect the secret projectiles, he also sent two palm force outward with the other hand.

The windforce generated by Zhan Bai vibrated the cave and two shrieking sounds were heard and three dark figures flew out of the cave.

Two figures landed onto the ground and did not move. No one knew if they were dead or alive.

And the third dark figure was Zhan Bai!

When Zhan Bai emerged from the cave, he had his right palm in an outright position and his left palm guarding his chest. He saw clearly that he was being surrounded by countless number of pugilists and among them was the handsome and elegant Young Master Qilin!

Standing besides Young Master Qilin was the beautiful beyond comparison, Jiangnan most beautiful maiden, Jin Caifeng.

And standing right behind them were the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence], the [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] Gongsun Chu and [Iron Wing Bird] Ba Tianhe.

There were many more top exponents from the Jin Residence but for a moment, Zhan Bai could not remember their names.

When Young Master Qilin, Jin Caifeng and the rest of the top exponents saw that it was Zhan Bai that had emerged from the cave, they were surprised and stunned.

It was because two top exponents from the Jin Residence had just entered the cave and were instantly thrown out and they were now lying on the ground.

It was impossible to imagine that it was Zhan Bai that had sent them flying out.

The general conclusion was that there must be a highly accomplished master that was inside the cave!

Young Master Qilin quickly regained his composure and he asked, “So it is Brother Zhan that is inside the cave. May I know who is the expert martial master that is inside the cave? May I ask you to invite him out?”

Zhan Bai had not expected that it was renowned Young Master Qilin that had broken the pugilist rules first and had used secret projectiles on the unexpected. Therefore he coldly said, “The man in the cave refuses to see anyone that do not knows the engagements of the pugilist fraternity! Anyone that uses secret projectile on the first meeting does not deserves to meet him. If Young Master have any instructions, you can speak to me directly instead!”

And his tone was not in the least polite at all.

When Jin Caifeng had saw it was Zhan Bai, her heart began to rumble fast and her starry watery eyes were looking at him but before she could speak, her brother had asked, “So it is Brother Zhan…”

Young Master Qilin had a bitter smile as he said, “Please do not misunderstood, Brother Zhan. I really do not know that you are inside the cave…”

Zhan Bai coldly exclaimed, “So you mean to say, if it were others, you would not hesitate to use your secret projectiles? Because of your status, you are the exception to the pugilist rules? Does it mean that I have to grateful to you for showing mercy on me!”

Jin Caifeng interrupted. “Please do not misunderstood my old brother. It is because we lost something very important. And the people we send out to comb these mountain caves have been attacked. Therefore…”

Among all the people from the Jin Residence, Ba Tianhe had the most impatience temper. Recently, the Jin Residence had been robbed and their men attacked in the vicinity of the Mountain Rocks of the Twelve Caves.

Now that two top exponents of the Jin Residence had seemingly lost their lives and Zhan Bai was so impolite and haughty given the fact that both the Jin brother and sister kept giving in to him. He was naturally upset and without waiting for Jin Caifeng to finish, he went forward and shouted at him, “Outrageous Junior! You are given a face yet you refuse to take the face. Do you think that the entire Jin Residence is afraid of you! If you still refuse to reveal who is inside that cave, do not blame me for being courtesy to you!”

Zhan Bai remained unmoved and coldly smirked. “So what if I am not polite. What are you doing to do then?”

“I will first put you down first!”

[Iron Wing Bird] gave a thunderous roar as he sprang forward like a lightning flash and extended his claws onto Zhan Bai’s face.

Indeed, Ba Tianhe instantly proved himself worthy as one of two best fighters in the Jin Residence. Not only was his speed fast, his strokes were intrigue to behold.

Even before his claws had reached his face, Zhan Bai could feel a windforce as sharp as a knife tormenting his skin.

But Zhan Bai was not what he was previously! Under the faithful guidance of the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey], he had learnt a quite a few intriguing strokes as well. Moreover whatever he willed, his body would react accordingly and released all his godlike strength that was in his innermost potential.

He did not move his body, did not move his legs and just turned his shoulders and he avoided Ba Tianhe’s claws and his hands in turn attacked the [Iron Wing Bird] shoulders.

Zhan Bai’s causal attack was actually a most marvelous stroke! Even though the [Iron Wing Bird] attacks seemed simple but it was actually a very subtle masterstroke called the ‘Dragon Lock’.

Ba Tianhe was startled that Zhan Bai could counter his stroke using another stroke. He immediately changed his attack positions.

Zhan Bai too was startled. He felt that it was unbelievable that the [Iron Wing Bird] could change his strokes so swiftly and his attacks were so quick, that had it not for Dong Qianli’s guidance, he would not have even hold his ground against him!

Zhan Bai was alarmed and he dared not slow down as he turned his body and executed a masterstroke ‘Capturing the Wind and Catching the Shadow’ that he had learnt from the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] and countered the [Iron Wing Bird] with this attack stroke.

Both men attacked with strokes and counter-attack with strokes. They did not defend nor dodge as their fists and palms clashed against one another. Both were also exceptional fast and their body swiftness movement and attacking stroking were all too intriguing to behold!

In a blink of an eye, they could exchange up to six to seven strokes. Even the top exponents of the Jin Residence were dazzled by them!

Especially the martial prowess of the [Iron Wing Bird]. The depth of his martial skills was too unpredictable and also amazing. He was the envy of the majority of the top exponents in the Jin Residence.

Now that they had witnessed Zhan Bai fighting with him to a standstill, they were all in shock and staring with their gaping mouths!

That the fact that Zhan Bai could battle the [Iron Wing Bird] into a standstill, shown no fright and could counter every stroke with a stroke, using attack stroke to halt another attack stroke was enough to send all the top exponents in the Jin Residence into astonishment and shock.

It was because his name alone was enough to send others into a flight!

The [Iron Wing Bird] had never encountered a match before and he had already used several uniquely masterstrokes continuous but still Zhan Bai remained as steady as ever!

Therefore he was infuriated and his stances were getting more and more vicious and the windforce that was generated in his claws increased. His fury was so great that it seemed like he wanted to kill Zhan Bai on the spot!

Now the fight processed into a point when they were attacking as fast as lightning and almost could not be distinguished from one another in a confusing daze of display. And then there was a thunderous air explosion as both disengaged from one another and maintained a distance of two yards!

Both stared at one another in rage for awhile and did not continued.

Now Young Master Qilin was a man that appreciated talents and when he saw how Zhan Bai had fought to a standstill with one of his Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence despite his youth, he was extremely delightful of him.

Just when he about to shout for them to halt the fight, they suddenly plunged into the crazed melee again with a great shout after staring at one another.

This style of fighting was never seen before! And it stunned everyone as they continued the same thing again.

Gongsun Chu laughed aloud. “Young fellow! You are really something. You can actually fight our Old Bird to a standstill!”

When the [Iron Wing Bird] heard that, he was even more infuriated! With a great shout, he used ten folds of his martial power and furiously extended out his palms like a horrid hurricane into Zhan Bai!

Zhan Bai did not hesitate and bent his body and circulated all his martial powers to accept the blow.

As both palms locked, it created a huge thunderclap sound and stirred out a ripple of windforce in all directions, sending dust and dirt flying in all directions!

But this powerful blow from the [Iron Wing Bird] failed to bow Zhan Bai over and with the aid of his Divine Iron Wing Armor, he instantly sprang swiftly into the air and executed an even more powerful attack on top of Zhan Bai’s head!

Zhan Bai quickly raised his hands upward in a ‘Conqueror Stance’ to receive the incoming blow.

Everyone saw that a dark and big figure had ascended into the air above like a gigantic flying bird and about to descend in a furious stomp downward! He was using the ‘Thousand Weight Fall’ stance into his own style called the ‘Weight of the Mountain’ as he came crushing down.

Except for Zhan Bai, everyone knew that Ba Tianhe was about to use his ‘Iron Wing Divine Skill’ no one had ever survived the full force of this divine skill before!

There was a explosive thunderclap and it was so earth shaking and much forceful than just a moment ago that all the top exponents began to cry out in startled voices as they scurry backward.

But Zhan Bai still remained on the ground, seemingly without any injuries and he was as compose as ever! Moreover his big eyes were showing signs that it was even sharper than ever!

Now, not even the [Iron Wing Bird] was stunned but even Young Master Qilin, Jin Caifeng, [Iron Crouching Black Dragon] and all the rest of the top exponents were stunned as well.

Everyone knew the power of the Iron Wing Divine Skill. Even Gongsun Chu who had similar martial power with Ba Tianhe knew how deadly and powerful that skill was. What was more, he had combined it with the ‘Thousand Weight Fall’ stance and this increased the power of the Iron Wing Divine Skill by manifolds! Even if it was he himself, he dare not risk taking such a blow.

So speechless was Gongsun Chu, that he had forgot his usual humor and he thought to himself, “He is so young. How on earth did he attain…”

Suddenly his thoughts were interrupted by a great shout from Zhan Bai, “Why not try taking a blow from me too!”

Zhan Bai had taken a deep breath as he circulated all his vital energy from his abdomen as he extended out both his palms. This stroke came from the ‘Thunderclaps of the Buddha/Enoch’, a unrivalled skill from the Western Regions which the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] had taught him and was called the ‘Thunderclaps of the Western Paradise’.

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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:02 am

Chapter 29: The Thunderclaps of the Buddha Palm

At first there was a soft flurrying of energy and then a dark ominous force could be felt. And when the strength increased, it was like the shrieking sound of a thunderbird.

Since the [Iron Wing Bird] was a unparalleled martial fighter, he knew instantly something was amiss and his face turned ashen. But because earlier Zhan Bai had received two blows from him, if he were to dodge this incoming, it would place him in an awkward position given his renown in the fraternity.

After Zhan Bai had received two blows from him, he had already guessed as much that this palm force must be an unrivalled skill that was lost in the martial fraternity. Therefore he could only grind his teeth and summoned all his martial powers to receive the incoming blow.

Gongsun Chu found this palm technique a little queer and his quick mind suddenly remembered a legend. Even though he had never seen it before this unrivalled masterstroke from the Western Regions before but he began to call out panicky, “Thunderclaps of the Buddha Palm! Junior brother Ba! Be careful…”

But it was too late as the [Iron Wing Bird] had decided already to receive Zhan Bai’s blow!

To imagine the power of Zhan Bai’s blow, it must be remembered that even the [Divine Ape] did not dare to take the ‘Thunderclaps of the Enoch’ directly!

An earth shaking earthquake shook the ground and howling winds whirled in all directions and when everything had calmed down, they saw that the [Iron Wing Bird] had been knocked back by several yards and his face was a gristly bronze green! And his Iron Wings that were on his back was like a soon to be capsized boat on the open seas…

It was a fortunate thing that he had the protection of his Divine Iron Wing Armor or else he would be injured.

With the [Iron Wing Bird] renowned in the pugilist fraternity and his reputation as the number one fighter in Jiangnan, that he had been beaten back by a young man, shocked people into speechless silence…

Someone commented from a distance, “Just a blow is enough to send the Iron Bird scurrying backward. What a strong and solid palm force!”

And then another voice that came from a young maiden cried out sweetly, “Zhan Gege!”

This startled everyone and they turned around and saw a beautiful handsome young man and an extraordinary beautiful maiden in cotton dress.

That young maiden was about sixteen to seventeen year old. And she had a natural brightness in her presence and she was as captivating as a beautiful flower.

Even though Jin Caifeng was the most beautiful maiden in Jiangnan but the pureness and beauty of this young maiden was not beneath her. Especially that exquisite air around her that was like spring that gave life to the surroundings. Compared to her beauty, she was like another clear image!

And this lively young maiden was Wan’Er!

As for this beautiful young man, his simple clothing could not hide his beauty. Compared to Zhan Bai and Young Master Qilin, he was handsome too but did not look as ragged as Zhan Bai nor did he have Young Master Qilin air of nobility. He looked pleasing and unassuming.

He was none other than Young Master Duanfang!

But Zhan Bai did not know who was he. But when he saw them appearing together, a feeling of jealousy overwhelmed him even though he had no feelings for her.

But when he saw Wan’Er with this beautiful young man, he was really unhappy.

But Wan’Er did not care a hoot of what others might think. After she had found Zhan Bai, she flew with open arms like a bird into Zhan Bai as she hugged his arm in a heart- warming affection. She chirped happily, “Zhan Gege! You have finally mastered your skills? This is so good…”

Now it was Young Master Duanfang’s turn to be jealous.

At first, Jin Caifeng had been attracted by the extraordinary air of Young Master Duanfang but when she saw Wan’Er flew straight into the arms of Zhan Bai, a look of envy and jealousy was betrayed on her face as she said. “I see that not only do the both of you know another and it seems to be quite good as well…”

Young Master Qilin on the other hand was quite cheerful. It was because he wanted to befriend all the talents in the fraternity and recruited them to his side. When he saw that the other young man was extraordinary in appearances, he bowed with his hands and asked, “I am Young Master Qilin. May I know young hero’s name?”

Young Master Duanfang turned ashen once again as he too bowed with his hands. “Forgive my impoliteness! I see that you are the famous Young Master Qilin from the City of Nanjing! I am Duanfang and I am most fortunate to know you!”

When everyone heard that he was Young Master Duanfang who together with their Young Master Qilin, was of the few most renowned names in the martial fraternity, they were startled.

Now it was Young Master Qilin’s turn to be startled for he knew that they were rivals and he lost all interests in trying to recruit him to his side. Instead, secretly he had decide to exert pressure on this rival so that he could be bowed over by him. So he laughed, “Indeed I am fortunate as well! I will never expect it to be the famous Young Master Duanfang!”

But Wan’Er chipped in, “Interesting! So we have the [Ever Hospitable] Xiangling and the [Roaming Wanderer] Duanfang here. If I could ask my older brother to be present here and if we could find the [Dashing Joy Seeker] Anle, then all the Young asters of the Martial Fraternity would then be presented huh!”

Young Master Qilin turned around in doubt, “Do you mean that young maiden, your older brother is the [Heartless Wind] Young Master Lingfeng!”

Wan’Er nodded and laughed, “You are so right!”

Young Master Qilin smiled, “Then may I ask for young mistress Murong to help me carry a message to your brother that I would like to meet him!…”

Wan’Er interrupted. “My surname is not Murong but is Zhan!”

Once again, Young Master Qilin was startled and he asked, “Young mistress and Young Master Lingfeng are not real siblings?”

Very unhappily, Wan’Er answered. “Who say that my brother and I are not real siblings? My surname is Zhan…” Then her big eyes blinked at Zhan Bai and she held his hand to say, “I have the same surname as Zhan Gege!”

Zhan Bai’s heart jumped out when he heard that. Even though he knew the exact reason why her surname was Zhan but he had never expected Wan’Er to declare so affirmative her familiar ties with him without feeling embarrassed!

He was also feeling strange. Wasn’t the Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity, the sons of the [Jiangnan Seven Heroes]? Why was that they did not know of one another? Did they never revealed their past to their descendants and they cut off all contacts with one another?

Zhan Bai did not know that he had guessed correctly. Years ago, when the seven heroes of Jiangnan had each departed to setup their family, to avoid their enemies due to their fame, they set up their homes in secretive places around the fraternity. When the Lake Dongting incident happened, they had already maintained few contacts with one another. Furthermore to their wives, sons and daughters, they rarely referred to their once glorious days. Therefore their descendants did not know of their misdeeds and one another.

Only Murong Han and Fan Fei still maintained familiar ties with one another. But because Murong Han’s wife was a famous beauty, he was constantly in suspicious and in doubt of her. Whenever his wife had some contacts with any men, he would instantly be filled with fire of jealousy even though nothing had happened.

Once, during the hot summer, when Fan Fei’s wife came to visit the Murong Manor. It so happened that Murong Han was not at home and since it was the hot summer, Lady Murong began to invite Lady Fan to the bathroom to freshen up. As it was breezy and comfortable in the bath area, Lady Fan fell asleep.

When Murong Han returned home and saw that some one was in the bath area, he began to have wild thoughts that Fan Fei and his wife had betrayed him and was in the bath area together. Therefore he flew into a rage and barged into the bath area without checking his facts and saw the naked Fan Fei.

Afterwards, he was chipped by Lady Murong for not knowing the proper conducts and everyone in the Murong Manor began to whisper all sorts of rumors like how Murong Han and Lady Fan was actually having fun together in the bath area. This caused Lady Fan to commit suicide in embarrassment!

That was why several years later, the Fan Clan, led by the [Three Swords and one Mystical Bird], together with several top exponents raided the Murong Manor thirsting for vengeance, to avenge Lady Fan!

Putting aside this first, at this moment when Young Master Qilin had heard that both Zhan Bai and Wan’Er shared the same surname, he laughed with realization. “So I see that young mistress Murong and Brother Zhan had already been married to one another. It is really a comparable match! Congratulations! Congratulations!…”

Now that Young Master Qilin had misunderstood it, Zhan Bai and Wan’Er was brushing too deeply to correct it while Young Master Duanfang and Jin Caifeng was looking on with great disappointment…

Zhan Bai, still flushing deeply, hurried to explain. “Young Master, if you do not know the facts, you shouldn’t have made a wild guess! We are not…”

But before Zhan Bai could finish, Young Master Duanfang had turned around and walked away.

Young Master Qilin did not notice Zhan Bai for when he saw that Young Master Duanfang had walked away without notice, he raised his voice to say, “Young Master Duanfang, please wait! I still have words for you!”

Young Master Duanfang did not turn back his head but bowed with his hands on the spot and said, “I have urgent matters to attend to and I have to leave now!”

When Young Master Qilin saw that Young Master Duanfang insisted on leaving even though he had tried to stop him, he sprang in front of him to say. “Why leave so hastily? May I know why are you not in the West Lake and you have come to this desolate parts?”

Young Master Duanfang coldly exclaimed. “No one owns the mountains and the forests. I, Duangfang is a wanderer. Why shouldn’t I be wandering around here?”

Young Master Qilin smiled coldly. “Everyone has the right to walk freely so who can stop Young Master Duanfang from going anywhere? But no matter what, you have to explain clearly your business here!"

By then, the top exponents of the Jin Residence had surrounded Young Master Duanfang and it looked like anytime if Young Master Qilin were to give a command, they would fall upon him!

Young Master Duanfang looked around for awhile before he laughed loudly. “What if I still do not want to tell you my business here?”

Young Master Qilin became solemn and said, “Then I have to retain you!”

Young Master Duanfang answered. “Just because you have many men?”

“I, Xianglin alone is enough to retain you!”

At this moment, Gongsun Chu said, “Why bother our esteem Young Master to lift your hands on this junior? Allow me to learn something from this renowned Young Master Duanfang. I would really like to see what he is capable of!”

But Young Master Qilin raised his hand to stop the aggressive Gongsun Chu and explained to Young Master Duanfang. “Honestly speaking. The Jin Residence had lost something very important in this area and it is so coincidence that you are here. You can’t blame me for feeling suspicious!”

Young Master Duanfang smirked. “I afraid that the item that you have lost is turn stolen by others, am I right?”

Young Master Qilin lost his composure and shouted, “So it is you! Accept my challenge!”

Young Master Quanfang shouted aloud, “Great timing!”

Both were swift and in a blink of an eye, they had both exchanged three to five strokes before they locked blows with one another with their palms before they scurried backward.

Young Master Duanfang felt a numbness in his shoulders while Young Master Qilin felt a burning sensation in his hands. Both were equaled in power!

Both quickly entangled into another fight once again.

Gongsun Chu was afraid that his Young Master would come to harm, therefore he raised his palm with a great shout towards Young Master Duanfang.

Young Master Duanfang managed to push back Young Master Qilin before he narrowly evaded Gongsun Chu’s blow.

By now, he was heavily surrounded by the top exponents from the Jin Residence. He laughed hilariously, “So the renowned Young Master Qilin is only capable of using wolf pack tactics to win!” And then he put out a whistle and blew it.

And hundreds of beggars appeared from view in all directions each wielding a staff!

Young Master Qilin and the rest of the Jin Residence were stunned when they saw so many beggars appearing from nowhere undetected! And they were begging for alms!

Wan’Er thought for awhile before she exclaimed aloud. “I see that he is the King of the Beggars!”

Zhan Bai did not understand and he asked. “Who was that? Who are you referring to?”

Wan’Er pointed to Young Master Duanfang and said. “That is him huh!”

Suddenly Zhan Bai had remembered that Wan’Er had appeared with Young Master Duanfang so he asked, “Wan’Er. Aren’t you supposed to learn martial skills from the [Divine Ape]. Why are you with Young Master Duanfang?”

So Wan’Er recounted to him what had happened. She had carried the [Divine Ape] in search for a suitable cave and then how they were poisoned by a ‘Mercury Spring’ and how they were saved by Young Master Duanfang. And how the [Divine Ape] sent him to flight with his words. Afterwards, the [Divine Ape] had taught her his martial skills for ninety days before he had died and how she chanced upon Young Master Duanfang who had helped her to bury the elderly senior.

While Wan’Er began her recounting in the cave and the descriptions of those dead men fitted the ‘Outrageous Five Flying Cloud’ that had tried to rob him while he was still an escort runner. Since they had failed in the robbery, how did they come into possession two chests of treasures?

Since the hundreds of beggars were pressing through from everywhere, he did not have the time to ask Wan’Er…

Young Master Duanfang laughed merrily. “Since you like to win by numbers, so can I win by numbers!” And he leapt onto a tall boulder and began to sit down. “My poor beggar brothers! These people are rich and wealthy. It is time for you to ask them for alms!”

And the beggars broke into a huge din as they cried out for various alms.

But in the midst of the din, they had already formed a huge formation called the ‘Beggar Formation’ with their bamboo staff and their footsteps were weird and secretive.

The top exponents of the in Residence became nervous and Gongsun Chu said in a low voice to Young Master Qilin. “Young Master! Be very careful! This is the famous ‘Beggar Formation’! Let my Junior Brother Ba and I fend it for awhile. Young Mistress and you must quickly get out of this formation. If there is anything else, we have to wait until then to discuss!

Those hundreds of beggars were surrounding them with their green bamboo staff and it was like a huge whirlwind as they moved their weapons.

Young Master Qilin and Jin Caifeng were startled and knew how deadly the formation was and they could only nodded their heads in silence consent.

Gongsun Chu then appointed from among the Jin Residence top exponents, Wang Zhaoming from the Heaven Sword Clan, Shi Jiaoliang from Changshan and the two Ouyang brothers from Mt. Hengshen to guide Young Master Qilin and Jin Caifeng to safety.

As the Beggar Formation swiftly took upon its effect in a gigantic maddening torrent of wild attacks, even Gongsun Chu was forced to respond with his best palm force that he had training for the past sixty years!

Even the [Iron Wing Bird] responded with all his might as he sprang into the beggars like a gigantic eagle with his earth shaking Iron Wing Divine Skill!

When combined, one below and one on top, the [Twins Ironguards of the Jin Residence] displayed the most powerful attacking stance as they tried to break this Beggar Formation!

At first, the formation seemed to have halt but it was but an illusion as the hundreds of staff dissolved the palm force of the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] into nothingness!

Because the entire Beggar Formation was a moving formation, Young Master Qilin found himself trapped in the middle.

Zhan Bai and Wan’Er was also trapped as well!

Wan’Er chirped melody. “How could you! You do not even let me off as well!” And she raised out her hands and flickered with her fingers and two beggars dropped instantly onto the ground.

The combined forces of the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] was super awesome and the attack stance was extremely fierce but the Beggar Formation could easily absorb their attacks but why not Wan’Er’s attacks?

Furthermore, she was only sixteen to seventeen. It was really a weird thing!

But Zhan Bai knew the reason why. It was because the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] had warned him that the [Divine Ape] had a uniquely powerful skill that he must be beware of for it was near impossible to block it.

And Zhan Bai cried out in astonishment. “Soul Seeking Fingers! You actually know the Soul Seeking Fingers?!” He could not control his outburst because he was too startled with disbelief.

Wan’Er snapped, “I am not willing to learn huh! What can I do when that old monster kept forcing me to?” Then she laughed charmingly at him. “But Zhan Gege, please do not worry. Your sister will never use this vicious masterstroke against you…”

But Zhan Bai was really unhappy with her. First, she had called the [Divine Ape] an old monster. This annoyed him for no matter how peculiar was the [Divine Ape] Tie Ling, he was the one that had taught her his martial skills. Even if there were no Mentor relationship but if martial skills were involved, the student would still need to respect the Mentor as his or her Mentor. This code of conduct was very important in the martial fraternity.

By calling the [Divine Ape] as an old monster, she was being disrespectful to him. Furthermore, Wan’Er annoyed him a second time when she said that she would not use this vicious masterstroke on him. It was obviously that she was looking down on him.

Just when Zhan Bai was about to berate her for that, the bulk of the Beggar Formation was upon them! For they had seen Wan’Er killing two of their own when she lifted her fingers and they were infuriated!

In fact, so infuriated were their furies with Wan’Er that the attacks that were unleashed were many times stronger than their earlier attacks against the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence]!

Wan’Er could sense the staves coming in like shadowy mountains collapsing onto them. She was startled and lifted two fingers on both her hands again. Because her internal power had not reached the necessary level yet, therefore she could not use all her fingers yet in regard to this unrivalled ‘Soul Seeking Fingers’ martial skill.

In panicky, Wan’Er unleashed her the Soul Seeking Fingers once more and injured another two.

Indeed, the Soul Seeking Fingers were powerful and as she continued to point her four fingers in the incoming torrid attacks, the top exponents from the Beggar Formation were alerted to her skill and had rushed forward to aid the formation. She could only injured two more before they were on her!

She was so startled that she cried out as she dodged right and left. It was a good that her swiftness agility was very good, coupled with the fact that her ‘Walking in the Air Miracle’ was also a uniquely superior swiftness skill that she managed to escape unscathed. But in the process, she was in an extreme panicky state and she had turned ashen…

Zhan Bai had unleashed two ‘Thunderclaps of the Buddha Palm’ but like Wan’Er, he had not reached the stage where he could unleashed it anytime he wanted. After that, he could only dodge left and right as he endured bitterly in the formation.

Nor only Wan’Er and Zhan Bai had to fight alone bitterly in the formation, all the rest of the top exponents in the Jin Residence, the Twin Ironguards, Young Master Qilin and his sister, was all trapped as well.

This Beggar Formation was most marvelous. Consisted of hundreds of people, the changes in the formation was unpredictable and it seemed to create an illusion of tens of thousands of shadowy bamboo images as it swirled and attacked from all directions!

Only the [Iron Wing Bird] Ba Tianhe fared slightly better. It was because he had his Divine Iron Wing Armor on him, that he could jump really high and to avoid the terrible sufferings below. But it was only a temporary relief since he could do nothing while in the air and he had to land all the time eventually.

Zhan Bai’s Thunderclaps of the Buddha Palm and Wan’Er’s Soul Seeking Fingers were powerful enough to occasionally send one or two beggar to their maker and also created some breathing spaces for themselves.

There was a loud scream and a top exponent from the Jin Residence was thrown out of the Beggar Formation for he was dead. He was covered with bruises and purple blood, obviously he had been severely beaten by the bamboo staves and when he could no longer resist, was thrown out of the formation to be trampled upon!

All these while, the beggars were still shouting for alms!

[Iron Wing Bird] was stunned and angry. He empowered himself with his Iron Wing Divine Skill and the Soaring Eagle swiftness skill as he attacked furiously but to no avail!

But Wan’Er who had always been exceptional bright and was a quick thinker, saw it. This gave her an idea as she thought. “Why suffer in the formation when I could learn from that Old Bird and use the Walking in the Air Miracle swiftness skill to hop up and down? It is better than staying trapped below!”

Therefore, she ascended upward by borrowing the windforce of the bamboo staves as she started to dance in mid-air.

Because Wan’Er was very beautiful, coupled with her exquisite bearing and the grace of her uniquely swiftness skill, she was like the Celestial Maiden from the Ninth Heavens as she danced in the moonlight. The view was stunning and breathtaking!

Young Master Duanfang who had been siting on a slope exclaimed aloud, “What marvelous swiftness skill! So stunning as well!…”

It would be better if he did not say anything. For he attracted her notice.

Wan’Er was trapped in this Beggar Formation for no good reason at all and she was certainly extremely unhappy about it. This annoyed her so much that she mustered all her strength and she leapt on tip-toes on the windforce that was generated by the bamboo staves as she sprang like she was flying towards Young Master Duanfang!

Even though the distance was more than hundred feet away but Wan’Er did not even land on the ground as twice, she borrowed the invisible force that was generated by the bamboo staves as she leapt onto the tall boulder that was thirty feet high!

Young Master Duanfang kept praising her as he welcomed her ascend.

But Wan’Er hated him for trapping her in the Beggar Formation as well and even before she had landed, she had lifted her fingers and an extremely powerful invisible force that carried a windforce screamed through the air towards his chest!

Young Master Duanfang was startled and he did not dare to block this incoming attack. As he turned around in a hurry to avoid it, he was also calling out, “Maiden! Why did you attack me?”

Wan’Er was already standing on top of the tall boulder. She groaned and coldly said. “Why did you ask your beggars to surround me as well? What is the meaning of this?”

Young Master Duanfang had a bitter smile on his face. “If you do not stand with them, the beggars will never dare to find your trouble…”

Wan’Er replied, “If you do not happen to stand here, then I will not attack you as well!”

Young Master Duanfang was stunned into speechlessness by Wan’Er reply and could neither laugh nor cry. But he retained his composure to ask, “Then maiden, may I know where can I go?”

Wan’Er stared at him and said. “Why should I care where you should go? But if your beggars were to hurt even one hair from my Zhan Gege’s head, I would take your life in return!”

This infuriated Young Master Duanfang. Firstly, Wan’Er was too heartless in her speech and secondly, the way Wan’Er was so protective of Zha Bai aroused his jealousy. He furrowed for a moment before a malevolent air flashed on his face as he laughed. “My life is not that worthless as to compensate for someone’s else hair!”

Wan’Er immediately replied, “Do you think that I am unable to kill you huh?”

Before Young Master Duanfang could reply, yet another wretched scream was heard from one of the top expert exponents of the Jin Residence. He had died in a similar manner as the earlier man that had perished in the Beggar Formation.

And the angry shouts of Young Master Qilin and Gongsun Chu were heard, their rage had reached boiling point and a series of fierce counterattacks were heard.

But the most angry of all was the hot-tempered and impatience [Iron Wing Bird] Ba Tianhe!

But this ‘Beggar Formation’ was simple too powerful and totally unpredictable! Even though the top exponents of the Jin Residence tried countless times to find a loophole in the formation but it was futile.

All of a sudden, there appeared a five feet wide hole in the middle of this strict and rigid Beggar Formation! And in the midst of that vacuum, was Zhan Bai with his Heartless Precious Sword!

When Zhan Bai found himself unable to break out of the formation, he was feeling extremely vexing at heart. Therefore he drew out the Heartless Precious Sword from his back.

The Heartless Precious Sword was indeed an exceptional sharp divine weapon. When Zhan Bai executed his newly learnt wordplay ‘Wind and Thunder Diagram Swordplay’ with his Heartless Precious Sword with the stroke ‘Wind Shaker and Thunderclaps’, he cleared a vacuum that was five feet wide.

This sudden attack caught the beggars by surprise and five to six bamboo staves were severed by the Heartless Precious Sword!

These green bamboo staves were called the ‘Dog beating stick’ and must be presented by the Beggar Chief personally during the beggar gathering ceremony. And it was a weapon that was held in high regard.

Every three years, there would be a ceremony gathering and those that had been in the sect for three years or more would be entitled to a wooden stick. After another six years or more in the sect, a yellow bamboo stick would then be presented. The yellow bamboo stick was called the bitter bamboo stick. And a total of nine years or more would have to pass before that.

As for this green bamboo stick, that was also called the dog beating stick, they would only get it after twelve or more years later after they got the yellow bamboo stick. That was why only those proteges that had highly martial accomplishments could deserve to have this stick.

And the hundreds of beggars here were all top martial exponents and they had at least twenty years of martial training for they were all carrying the dog beating stick!

That was why they could trap all the top exponents from the Jin Residence, even Young Master Qilin and his sister, Zhan Bai and all the rest of the super exponents!

Moreover, the green bamboo stick was specially made on the island of Hainan and it was as solid as steel. Even a normal precious sword could not damage it! But now, with a swing of his Heartless Precious Sword, Zhan Bai had severed five to six of them! One could only imagine the martial power executed by Zhan Bai!

This stunned all the hundreds of beggars for a while those beggars who had lost their weapons were not only stunned, they were extremely sorrowful and were also extremely indignant!

Zhan Bai was still standing awe-inspiring in the middle but he did not continue with his success and followed up his attacks.

Wan’Er exhaled in great delight, “Zhan Gege!…”

Young Master Duanfang had an abrupt change in his countenance as he hurriedly yelled aloud. “My poor friends! If the beggars are annihilated then we will have no face to meet our honorable grandmaster!”

This had the immediately effect of arousing their will to fight and once again, they raised their green bamboo sticks and leashed furiously at Zhan Bai.

And by now, they had stopped their pleads for alms and were filled with raving shouts instead as hundreds of bamboo sticks rained upon Zhan Bai in furies.

But Zhan Bai was like a winged tiger with a sword in his hands. When he first broke the formation temporary with his sword, he did not continue to attack, as he did not want to kill unnecessary. But now when they leashed at him with such a fierce mounting attacks, he had no choice but to display the second stroke of the ‘Wind and Thunder Diagram Swordplay’--- ‘Raging Thunder and Violent Wind’ and his sword leashed out like thunder and wind, moving like a dark cloud as it flashed forth.

Blood spattered everywhere and in an instant, seven to eight beggars either broke their bamboo sticks or had their arms severed and their terrified cries were horrible!

Once again, the mobs of beggars began to back off in startled shock and stared at him. Even though they were all looking at him venomously with rage, they did not dare to step forward.

Zhan Bai exclaimed in a loud but clear voice. “If you do not back off, I will indeed shown no mercy and will retaliate!”

Indeed, the beggars were so awestruck by Zhan Bai that none dare to come forward.

An old beggar that was about sixty took a step forward and said, “Us beggars know what is a favor when we see it. May I know if you tell us your name so that in the future, we can repay the gratitude?”

Zhan Bai replied. “My trivial name is Zhan Bai!”

The old beggar exclaimed. “So it is the Great Hero Zhan! Us beggar sect will remember this in our hearts and will seek to repaid you!

Zhan Bai said, “I am forced to attack! I have no wish to make enemies out of your esteem sect. If you really want to remember this vendetta in your hearts, I have nothing to say and I will accept the challenges from your esteem sect anytime!”

The old beggar lifted his thumb. “What a hero! Your courage is indeed worthy of praise…”

Young Master Duanfang called out anxiously. “Old Beggar Gong! Is it time for a festival? Look over there! They are breaking out soon….”

So it seemed that while this Old Beggar Gong was talking to Zhan Bai, the fighters from the Jin Residence had almost broke out of the Beggar Formation as they mounted another fierce breakthrough.

Even though the Beggar Formation was extremely deadly but the key to the power of this formation lied in the moving chain. A few dead people would never affect the Beggar Formation but once the formation stopped its movement, it would affect the formation severely.

Therefore the fighters of the Jin Residence took the opportunity to mount another breakthrough attempt when the formation was suddenly stopped due to a sudden mishap that had caused astonishment among the beggars. This caused the formation to be thrown into a state of confusion.

Old Beggar Gong was alerted to it by Young Master Duanfang and Zhan Bai was left alone in smaller numbers, as the rest of the beggars began to move the formation in greater numbers towards the fighters of the Jin Residence.

Once again, the fighting intensified.

Even though Young Master Duanfang had alerted Old Beggar Gong but he had also alerted the [Iron Wing Bird] Ba Tianhe who was gliding in mid-air when the formation intensified.

He thought, “The best way to round off the thieves is to capture their head! Young rascal, you have been sitting on that hill slope and directing this formation. Let me capture you then and the formation will be dissolved on its own accord!”

And he spread out his iron wings and soared like a gigantic bird into the air. Even before he had reached, his powerful windforce had arrived!

Young Master Duanfang raised both his palms to accept the challenge. Both windforces clashed with a loud sound in mid-air but it failed to stop Ba Tianhe from continuing his ascent towards him!

Young Master Duanfang was startled and he tried to evade the incoming [Iron Wing Bird] Ba Tianhe but he was simply flying too fast and in an instant was on top of his head.

Ba Tianhe shouted with a thunderous roar, “Surrender your life, Junior!”

Young Master Duanfang was extremely alarmed as he cried out. “Oh dear!…” And he knew he was in a terrible awkward situation.

But Wan’Er was also standing besides Young Master Duanfang and [Iron Wing Bird]’s windforce had disturbed her and she gave a delicate shout. “You are courting your own death!” And she lifted her fingers to flicker a delicate windforce towards Ba Tianhe’s heart.

Earlier, Ba Tianhe had seen the awesome power of Wan’Er’s Soul Seeking Fingers and knew how deceptive this delicate windforce was and he hurried his iron wings to evade it but he was still a little too late. Wan’Er had pierced his Divine Iron Wing Armor with a hole! This divine armor was impervious to all weapons!

He had an abrupt change in his expressions as he turned ashen. “How dare you! How dare a lowly wretch like you damage my precious divine armor! I will tear you to pieces and scattered your remains in the wilderness!”

Wan’Er saw that he had his claws extending out and coming towards her in an extremely aggressive manner. As she did not know what deadly and vicious skills was he going to use next, she kept to a defensive posture.

But Young Master Duanfang who was saved by Wan’Er in a timely fashion, had by now regained his composure but he was also angry. When he saw that Ba Tianhe had his back against him as he went aggressively after Wan’Er, he raised his fingers to use his family unique skill ‘Origin Finger’ and raised it against his back.

Ba Tianhe had mustered his internal power and just when he was about to confront Wan’Er to avenge his divine iron wing armor, he felt a windforce behind his back and knew that someone was assaulting him from the back. This infuriated him even more and he turned around with the ‘Great Reversal Stance’, having mustering all his internal powers to its peak as he clashed headlong into Young Master Duanfang’s ‘Original Finger’.

There was a thunderous cracking sound that shook the place and two miserable howls were heard.

One came from Young Master Duanfang, who had been knocked tens of feet down the tall boulder as he flew down in a head down and leg up position.

The other miserable howl came from [Iron Wing Bird] as he felt a great pain that originated from the ‘Origin Finger’ when they clashed blows with one another. And then he saw there was an inflamed spot on his left palm!

The [Iron Wing Bird had rampaged the pugilist fraternity in havoc for tens of years and had never met his match. Now that someone had damaged his divine armor and even injured his hand, this aroused his natural brutal character and his will to kill. He suppressed his pain and sprang downwards to where Young Master Duanfang was.

Even though Young Master Duanfang had been thrown down the slope, he only sustained a light injury. He lifted his vital energy while he was still in an upside down position while in mid-air and landed on his feet on the ground.

But at this moment of time, Ba Tianhe had already descended upon him once more with his right palm in a hacking stance!

Young Master Duanfang knew the power of Ba Tianhe’s palm force now and because he was also injured, he did not dare to accept the incoming blow. He could only dodge it!

But their howls of miseries had already alarmed the top martial exponents in the Beggar Formation and tens of them appeared with their staves.

Even before Ba Tianhe’s second blow could be unleashed, he was forced into retreat by tens of green bamboo staves that swung together as one!

This made him even angrier as he raised his powerful blows and knocked down several beggars. But the beggars were numerous. When he pushed one back, another would immediately replace the other.

Not only did the beggars saved Young Master Duanfang, they had also succeeded in trapping him in the Beggar Formation!

There were many that were either dead or injured now. Many of the top exponents of the Jin Residence had perished in the formation. But so did many of the beggars when the formation had slowed down earlier. A greater number of beggars were also killed by Zhan Bai. The Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence were vicious and exceptional powerful, every stance, every stroke generated by them would fell three to five beggars.

This had become a massacre!

Suddenly there was a great shout that resounded throughout the place. “Stop fighting!”

This shout was like a thunderbolt and piercing to the ears and filled with vitality. Everyone could not resist the commanding voice and had actually ceased to fight.

Standing on an opposite peak was tens of pugilists. Even though they could not see who was the one that shouted earlier but when these group of pugilists moved, they were all unearthly quick! And in an instant, they were just tens of feet away from them! Obviously, they were all highly endowed in martial prowess!

The man at the lead appeared to be the leader of this group. He was about twenty-five and was wearing a worn clothing and carried a torn book in his hands. His eyes was piercing and he had a commanding presence.

Only Zhan Bai had recognized him. Indeed, he was Young Master Anle! Accompanying by his side was Xiang Chongtian. Zhan Bai did not recognize the rest of the top exponents behind him though.

Young Master Anle whose real name was Yun Zheng saw Zhan Bai. He proceeded to nodd his head with smiles on his face to him.

But when he saw the Heartless Precious Sword that was in his hands, he was amazed. “Congratulations to Brother Zhan. You have finally found the sword that you have lost!”

Zhan Bai replied. “All thanks to Young Master’s blessings!…”

In the past when Zhan Bai had first known of Young Master Anle’s chivalrous ways, he wanted to befriend him. But now that he knew that all the four Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity were the sons of his father’s killers, he was not interested anymore. Therefore he did not try to be polite.

Young Master Anle had a slight red on his face because it was in his hands that Zhan Bai’s sword was stolen away. Even though he had pursued for half a day and still could not find the sword. Therefore for a moment, he could only smiled bitterly and did not know what to say…

Wan’Er had sprung down from the slope of the tall boulder and was standing just besides Zhan Bai. When she heard Zhan Bai addressing this badly dressed young man as a Young Master, she could help laughing. “Another Young Master has arrived! Why is there so many Young Masters?”

How matter how he looked, Wan’Er thought that he did not deserve to be one.

Zhan Bai thought to himself, “Don’t you know him? He is Young Master Anle! He share the same renown as your brother!”

Everyone was startled at the same time and they began to look at this Young Master Anle in much closer detail now.

Young Master Anle bowed with his hands. “I am Yun Zheng. It is only because of the kindred spirits of my friends in the pugilist fraternity that I am hailed as Young Master Anle. I happen to past by this place. May I know why everyone is fighting with one another?”

Young Master Qilin bowed with his hands as well. “It's an honor to meet you at long last! I've long looked forward to meeting you! I am Xianglin. Even though I have not the chance to know you but it is as though we have known one another for a long time!”

When Young Master Anle and his exponents heard that this man was Young Master Qilin himself, they were taken aback.

Young Master Anle laughed. “My apologies! So it is the renowned Young Master Qilin! It seem that what I am doing is more than what is required!”

It was because Young Master Anle was a nosy person that enjoyed meddling in others affair. But now, when he had learnt that it was Young Master Qilin himself that was creating a din, he knew that he might not be able to swallow it so he purposely said that.

When Young Master Duanfang who had seen them making introductions to one another but left himself out, he purposely sighed.

It could not escape the meticulous mind of Wan’Er. She knew instantly the reason for sighing and then she coincidentally giggled. “What a fortunate day. We already have three out of our Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity here today. Come, let me introduce you to Young Master Duanfang!” And she pointed her finger towards him.

Young Master Duanfang immediately bowed with his hands and repeated twice. “My honor to meet you!”

Young Master Anle and his henchmen were even more taken aback. They had not expected the other two young masters of the martial fraternity had created this din!

Wan’Er added. “It seem that I must really call for my brother!”

Zhan Bai was slowed to understand and he asked. “Why ask your brother to be here?”

Young Master Anle began to laugh aloud. “Needless to say, this maiden must be Young Master Lingfeng’s sister!”

Zhan Bai finally realized what Wan’Er was up to. So he said. “If the four Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity were to gather together, it must be a major event in the annals of the martial fraternity. But what a pity. Your brother will never be able to arrive in time!”

Young Master Qilin had a sudden idea. He was ambitious and had long wanted to bow over the other three young masters, dominate the entire martial fraternity and lord over all the heroes.

He laughed all of a sudden. “What so difficult about this! Us four Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity have shared the same renown. I have long wanted to meet. Now that Brother Zhan has mentioned it, I am thinking of making use of this fine opportunity to invite everyone to my humble abode for a gathering. May I know if the two Young Masters and Young Mistress Zhan will be willing to accommodate my request?”

Young Master Duanfang said coldly, “How then do we resolve what happen today?” He was referring to the numerous injured and dead beggars that were here.

Young Master Qilin smirked coldly. “Once all the four young masters have gathered, we will debt the new debts together with the old. Isn’t it better and much more logical?” Even though what he said was high-sounding but he actually felt quite isolated. It was because he did not know if Young Master Anle was friend or foe yet. If they had continued to fight, he was afraid that Young Master Anle would take this opportunity to wipe them out.

Young Master Duanfang was also afraid of the same time. Moreover too many of his beggars were either injured or dead. He had to think of his beggars’ welfare first. So he lifted his gaze and asked. “But on which day will the gathering be?”

Young Master Qilin considered for awhile before adding. “Let us enjoy our new year first and hold it on the fifteen day of the first lunar month next year. Let this Yuanxiao date be our gathering. What does everyone think of it?”

Young Master Anle began to laugh aloud. “If it is held at night, it will even be better. Imagine this, the night of Yuanxiao, all the four martial young masters had gathered in Nanjing. This will be a much talked about event for a long time!”

Young Master Duanfang said, “I will surely be there. But as to boast the moods of everyone presented, I will bring along a legendary treasure of the martial fraternity, the the Water Ascension Jade and let it be viewed by everyone!”

Young Master Qilin countenance became awful and dark. It was because this the Water Ascension Jade that he was going to bring happened to be his family heirloom! It was stolen three months ago and it was also why he had led his top exponents to this wilderness in search of it!

At first, he had suspected that Young Master Duanfang had stolen it. But he did not have any proof. But now when he heard that, he was both taken aback and upset. But he added. “Great! Then we shall decide it this way then! As I will like to increase the moods of everyone, I will also present a legendary treasure known as the Immortal Golden Cinnabar and allow everyone to take a look!”

This time round, it was Young Master Duanfang’s turn to be taken aback as his countenance changed. It was because this Immortal Golden Cinnabar was his family heirloom. It was lost on the way from Bejing to Hangzhou. That was why he had led the top fighters of the Beggar Sect in search of the missing treasure. It was also the reason why he had come to this wilderness!

And now that Young Master Qilin had mentioned it, he knew now that it was stolen by the Jin Residence!

Young Master Anle laughed merrily as he clapped the old book on his hands. “Since all the Young Masters will be showcasing wondrous treasures for the people in the martial fraternity, I, Yun Zheng will not be stingy as well. I’ll surely bring the Epitome Martial Chronicles to the gathering as well!”

When Young Master Anle mentioned the Epitome Martial Chronicles, everyone was shocked…

On another hand, Zhan Bai was filled with resentments and rage. He grinds his teeth and muttered to himself. “The three legendary treasures! It must not be wrong! It must be them!…”

Chapter 29 Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:02 am

Chapter 30: The Final Showdown

The Jin Residence was also called the Jiangnan number one residence. So exceedingly rich was the Jin Clan that their wealth was equaled to the entire nation.

It was the fifteen day of the first lunar month and today was also an important day.

The gates of the Jin Residence were opened and guards in golden armors and swords stood in two rows to welcome the guests. And among the guards, were tens of top exponents from the Jin Residence as they stood at the gates to welcome the guests.

Among them, was a handsome young man with a missing left arm. Beneath his handsome face, was a cunning and ruthless personality. And he was Meng Ruping.

Ever since he lost his left arm to Zhan Bai, he had begun to hate him to the bone. He thought of going after Zhan Bai to seek vendetta for himself. But when he heard that Zhan Bai would also be attending this Yuanxiao gathering, he decided to stay in the Jin Residence so that he could train himself in several vicious and ruthless skills.

Before sundown, he had already been standing in wait to welcome the heroes of the fraternity and was also waiting for Zhan Bai to appear so that he could avenge himself.

But after waiting for a long time, all he could see were the heroes of the martial fraternity and all the distinguished people from all over the place.

Meng Ruping was terribly disappointed in his heart and thought that Zhan Bai would not turn up. Just when he was about to make clear about some affairs to the Jin protégés before retiring into the hall, he heard a strange and weird tingling sound of some bells.

A vigorous young man that seeming radiated a heroic aura was seen riding a thin and furry small donkey. He had what seemed to be an extremely valuable precious sword on his back and he had stopped at the entrance of the Jin Residence.

Just imagine tonight was the gathering of the renowned Four Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity and furthermore, they were going to showcase three legendary martial treasures to everyone in the martial fraternity.

Those who had been invited would surely be the most outstanding fighters in the entire martial fraternity. And they reflected upon this honor by coming in with beautiful and smart horses or in a beautiful carriage. Who on earth would ride a pathetic looking donkey to attend the gathering?

But this young man halted his donkey with a ‘Yo!’ sound as he reined it with a rope before he glided down the donkey like a breeze. And he began to rein that donkey that was a little larger than a hound and walked swiftly to the large stone stairs of the entrance of the Jin Residence.

Two guards in golden armor began to block his approach.
One of the guards in a golden armor began to shout at him. “Stand where you are! This is the Nanjing Jin Residence! Is this a place where you can come freely?…awwwww!…”

The two guards were suddenly pushed backward and staggered five to six steps! It was really weird because the young man did not even raised his hands! He was seen walking up the stairs in an extremely serene manner…

The Jin protégés that were tasked to welcome the guests were all old pugilists that had seen much. By looking at his bright aura, they knew that this young man had surrounded himself with an inertia force. Without lifting a single finger, he had forcefully jolted the two guards backward and their martial prowess was definitely not weak!

Therefore, instantly, they knew a super exponent had arrived.

From the platform above the stairs, two Jin protégés somersaulted down the stairs and bowed with their hands. “Friend, may we know who you are? We will be glad to entertain you into the Jin Residence if you can inform us of your name…”

But before they could finish, the young man lifted his head.

They were taken aback with surprise and instantly changed their lines. “So it is Young Hero Zhan! Please come in! Please come in!”

It was because when Zhan Bai had a furious fight with Meng Ruping, they were also present as witnesses. Therefore they recognized him immediately. They hurriedly asked the servants to rein in Zhan Bai’s donkey and to guide him into the hall as well

But still, Zhan Bai had not said anything yet. Instead, he had a smile on his cold face and then he had leapt from the bottom of the stairs to the top of the platform entrance without even touching the stairs!

Everyone was amazed as they secretly praised. “What a powerful swiftness movement skill…”

And it was also the same time when Meng Ruping had just turned his body and saw that it was Zhan Bai. And Zhan Bai was now at the top opposite him!

Meng Ruping shouted furiously at him. “Rascal! So you have finally come!” And he raised a powerful blow towards Zhan Bai!

Zhan Bai could only feel the power of this palm and he could even sense that it carried an air of cold ying energy. But still, it did not weigh heavily in his heart as he waved his sleeve gently. “Welcome, welcome!”

Even though Zhan Bai had only gently raised his sleeve but it was enough to jolt Meng Ruping and sent him flying ten feet backward! If there were no walls behind him, he would have flown even further backward!

When Meng Ruping landed against the wall, his face turned ashen immediately and he bit his lips tightly for he had sustained internal injuries to his five organs. He stared viciously at Zhan Bai without a word…

Who would expect that in a few short months, Zhan Bai martial power could progress so rapidly that not even the vicious poisonous palm technique that he had learnt could be put to use? In fact he could not even withstand a single blow from Zhan Bai now!

He was startled with shock, filled with rage and left without a choice because he had been badly injured and could do nothing now. He could only watch Zhan Bai jeered him with a few smiles before he was ushered into the great hall.

Actually Zhan Bai carried a profound hatred in his heart. And his feeling of rage and resentment was actually many manifolds greater than what Meng Ruping had felt!

Tonight, on this Yuanxiao Festival, he carried with him the will to sink the ship as he decided to brave all his enemies to avenge his father’s unforgettable death!

That was why when he arrived at the entrance of the Jin Residence, he had displayed in continuous sequences the ‘Impervious Inertia Barrier’, ‘Illusion Move’ and the ‘Iron Cloth Sleeve’. All these are unique divine skills. It was not because he wanted to boast but it was to turn the guts of his foes cold!

Even though Meng Ruping had been beaten up by Zhan Bai but the Jin protégés had saw that Zhan Bai was skilful and not to be trifled with. Moreover, Young Master Qilin had specifically instructed them to be respectful of Zhan Bai if he comes.

Therefore, Zhan Bai was still ushered into the grand hall with all due respect.

It was not the first time that Zhan Bai stepped into this grand hall. And he was not as agitating in his emotions as now!

It was because he knew that the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu was the main culprit behind his father’s death. His blood raged and he had no mood to appreciate the beautiful events that were being held in this Jiangnan number one residence. Therefore without even glancing at all the beautiful and wondrous things that had littered the passages, he walked into the grand hall with his eyes straight.

In the grand hall, there were hundreds of people. It was peopled by the top exponents from the Four Aristocratic Clans and renowned exponents. People of unusual abilities and repute were also here.

In this joyous gathering, there existed hidden motives by the Four Young Masters of the Martial Fraternity as they schemed in secret against one another.

Because it was noisy as it was filled to the brim by hundreds of people. When the servants announced Zhan Bai’s name as he entered the grand hall, no one took notice.

As Zhan Bai was trying to find trouble on purpose, he lifted his sword in a sword dance and shouted thunderously as he circulated all his vital energy from his stomach. “The Sword danced and broke in a bitter song as it show no mercy! The incompetent Zhan Bai is here as a guest!”

This powerful singing had the effect of ripping throughout the grand hall and it stopped the din and laughter of the top exponents instantly. In that very instant, everything had gone deadly quiet.

The first to rose from his seat was Young Master Qilin. He was laughing aloud as he exclaimed. “The Sword danced and broke in a bitter song as it show no mercy is indeed a great composition. But today, the Jin Residence has no intention to do harm to their guest like what happened to Han Xin. Nor am I also following the example of the first Han Emperor! Come, Brother Zhan. Let me make an introduce to some of the seniors for you.”

Then he walked down the hall and hold Zhan Bai’s hand and pointed to an old man with piercing glare in the most important seating arrangement. “This is my father…”

When Zhan Bai heard the lines, his blood boiled with rage! And his head felt a daze! Even though Young Master Qilin was talking to him but he did not heard anymore.

It was because the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] had notified him that the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu was the primary motivator behind his father’s death! And he was the one that used such deadly secret projectile to wound his father first as the other five heroes of Jiangnan surrounded his father!

This old man had an extremely piercing glare and he exhibited a highly endowed intelligence. But it was his piercing glare that told Zhan Bai, his internal powers were definitely not weak! He also had a white moustache and radiated a stern and commanding presence.

Because he did not want to lose his bearings in front of everyone, he suppressed his rage and resentment by grinding his teeth and bowed with his hands. “I am honored to meet you! Jin Hero renowned and fame have spread far and wide. Today I am most fortunate to meet you!”

But Jin Jiu just nodded his head and did not return any of the courtesy rites. He did not even stand up and just said. “Very good.” And his piercing glare looked at him for a while.

Zhan Bai instantly thought that Jin Jiu was despising him and he could not control his rage. His countenance had changed and just when he was about to charge forward, he was stopped by Young Master Qilin who had noticed the change.

“My father legs are not convenient to walk. Please forgive us!”

Only then did Zhan Bai notice that Jin Jiu was sitting on a wheelchair and that his legs had covered with a thick cloth. He wondered why his legs had lost his use?

Young Master Qilin then showed him around to the rest of the guests. But he was not paying much attention as he was searching for the [Origin Finger] Sikong Jin, [Universal Palm] Yun Zonglong, [Conqueror Whip] Fan Fei and also the rest of his intended targets.

But the weird thing was that, the [Meteor Hand] Murong Han and the rest of his super exponents were not here. Only the proud Young Master Lingfeng and some unknown top exponents from Baotu Manor were presented.

There was no sight of Lei Dashu, [The Soul Snatching Silver Flute] Zhang Shipeng, [Soul Seeker Bell] Sima Jing, [One leg Flying Heretic] Li Ju and among others. In fact, none of the top ten super exponents from the Baotu Manor was presented.

Young Master Lingfeng was still his haughty and arrogant self. His eyes were looking at the top of the ceiling, paying no heed to anyone. And his mouth was smirked upward in an overbearing mannerism.

Even Young Master Qilin was the host, he was also turned off by him.

But Zhan Bai retained his composure and smiled. “There is no need for Young Master to introduce us to one another. We have already know one another!”

But Young Master Lingfeng stared at him and he was extremely icy as he said, “I know not a nameless fellow like you!”

Knowing Zhan Bai, Young Master Qilin knew that Zhan Bai would be provoked. It was not because he was afraid that they would really fight with one another but he had a secret plan and this plan must not be revealed until the proper time.

So he interfered, “Murong Brother has always been like this. Please do not mind him!”

But unexpectedly, Zhan Bai was not angry at all. Instead he was smiling. “I Zhan Bai, have known of it since the last time!”

Young Master Lingfeng hummed again coldly.

But just when Zhan Bai was about to leave, he turned around and stared at him. “Do not be anxious. One day, I will let Master Murong knows who I am!” And then he left.

Young Master Lingfeng whose real name was Murong Chengye was provoked and he rose up with five fingers to stab Zhan Bai on his three fatal points on his back. This was from the famous [Meteor Hand] technique from the ‘Three Purple Slabs’ stroke. As this was a soft stance technique, it carried no sound and once the back was turned, there was no way for its target to know!

But Zhan Bai was not what he was previously! Taught by the [Iron Guts Divine Donkey] for three months, he could now control his martial powers at will and furthermore, he had spent an additional two months at the Mountain Rocks of the Twelve Caves just to practice the unusually martial skills that was recorded in the Soul Binder Sacred Manual!

And he had reached the stage of ‘Knowing one, knowing all’! And his progress was now a thousand miles apart than two months ago! Therefore he was now one with his body and his spirit was the body! Such was his martial attainment now!

Even though Young Master Lingfeng’s back attack skill was unparalleled but it did not escaped Zhan Bai’s notice and he neutralized his awesome stroke ‘Three Purple Slabs’ with a ‘Invisible Dissolve’ in subtle and said to him. “Later I will look for you!”

Young Master Lingfeng fell back into his seat with a horrified shock on his face. Not only was his [Meteor Hand] epitome technique neutralized, he was also knocked back into his seat and unable to move temporary!

It was a good thing that Zhan Bai meant to be subtle, therefore it had escaped the notice of everyone, thus sparing Young Master Lingfeng from shame.

But Young Master Anle, who had long wanted to recruit Zhan Bai into his fold, paid plenty of attention on him. Therefore he had saw that this stroke from Zhan Bai was extremely subtle and that he purposely did not want to attract the notices of anyone. So he did not expose Young Master Lingfeng’s embarrassment as well but went forward to pull Zhan Bai to his seating position.

Zhan Bai did not reject his advances and he sat besides Young Master Anle. Those who had known him and those that did not known him, stared at him for awhile because he must be really an important person for Young Master Anle to arrange a seat besides himself. He did not know to feel delightful or sad.

It was because he was a lone swordsman. Later, he would avenge his father’s wrongful death in the face of all the heroes of the martial fraternity. Even though it was a delightful thing for him to execute his vendetta at long last but he was only one! What if later, he would later die and failed in his revenge?…

Then he had another thought. Even though he might fail in his quest but to be able to expose the killers in the face of all the heroes of the fraternity, it was worth sacrificing himself. When he thought of that, he managed to calm himself now.

All of a sudden, he noticed a pair of starry big eyes was looking at him in a devoted manner. He carefully looked back and found out that it was no stranger but Jin Caifeng, the most beautiful maiden in Jiangnan!

He received a jolt in his heart and he could feel his heart was beating wildly. His face was as though he was burning and his thoughts became wild. “Is she in love with me? Why is that every time we meet, she will look at me in this way?…”

“It is impossible! She is the mistress of the impossible wealthy Jin Residence and I am just a down and trodden wanderer. Even if she have liked me, what can I give her in return for her love?…”

But he suddenly recalled that she was the daughter of his father’s killer. There was going to be a huge bloodshed very soon. Soon they were going to be sworn enemies soon. Whatever love had existed would soon be extinguished very soon.

Therefore after arriving at this conclusion, the burning sensational that he had felt vanished like icy cold water had just been poured upon him.

At this moment, the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu had summoned Young Master Qilin to him. He was seen whispering to him and then Young Master Qilin bowed his hands to everyone and was heard exclaiming. “Heroes of the fraternity! The banquet is ready and may I invite everyone to move outside to the garden so that we can appreciate the full moon while we feast!”

Young Master Duanfang was the most impatient and he stood up to ask, “When are you going to take out the Immortal Golden Cinnabar and exhibited it to everyone?”

Young Master Qilin smiled. “Brother Sikong, do not be hasty. Since you had also brought the Water Ascension Jade, will I withheld my Immortal Golden Cinnabar? Let us all go outside to feast and then we, including Brother Yun Zheng, will present the three legendary treasures to everyone at the same time. Won’t the mood be electrifying later?”

Young Master Anle patted his old book that was on his hand and laughed. “What an enjoyable mood to appreciate the three legendary artifacts of the martial fraternity under the beautiful moonlight as we feast and drink!”

Actually everyone were just putting on a false pretense. Their true intentions were not on the feast but on the three legendary treasures! Now that even Young Master Anle had declared so, everyone hurried out of the grand hall to the garden outside.

Zhan Bai cold eyes were on [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jin, [Universal Palm] Yun Zonglong, [Origin Finger] Sikong Jin and the [Conqueror Whip] Fan Fei. They were sitting quietly by the side as the Young Masters each tried to be the scene-stealer as they compete with one another.

He began to wonder what were they actually up to? And for a while, his entire focus was upon them…

All of a sudden, Young Master Lingfeng coldly exclaimed. “The other three Young Masters all have a treasure but do you think that I, Lingfeng, do not have any precious treasure to exhibit?”

The guests that were heading out of the grand hall immediately halted their steps and turned to look at Young Master Lingfeng. They began to wonder what precious treasure could be even more precious than the three legendary artifacts?

When Young Master Lingfeng saw that he had created the desirable effect, he was proud. He turned around to an elderly old man. “Third Uncle Helian! Will you take out the precious treasure that I have mentioned and showed it to everyone present!”

This Third Uncle Helian began to take out a box from his sleeves and it was wrapped around in a silken textile. He started to unwrap it and was revealed to be a red wooden box. Altogether, there was three layers of textile and he unwrapped it very slowly as though there was indeed an extremely treasure inside.

When he finally unwrapped it and opened the red wooden box, a sweet fragrance could be sniffed everywhere in this grand hall…

Everyone was looking at the hands of this elderly old man. Even though the massacre had not started yet but the atmosphere was extremely tense. Even if a needle would to drop onto the ground, it could be heard resounding!

All of a sudden, someone from the crowd whispered in a low voice. “If this fragrance carried a venomous poison, then everyone in this grand hall would find it hard to leave here alive!”

Even though the voice was extremely soft but in the ears of these people, it resounded as though it was a thunderbolt. And many started to seal their breath and secretive mustered their vital energies in preparation of a fight…

One of Young Master Duanfang’s henchman, an old beggar with red ruddy face began to laugh loud. So fragrance! Even if it were a poison, I would still want to have a taste!” And he launched forward to grab the box.

But the long hair elderly old man did not even bat his eyelids as he placed the red wooden box on the table, lifted his fingers to flicker and the red ruddy old beggar was sent flying backward as he turned purple!

Everyone grasped, as they knew the red ruddy old beggar had lost!

It was the Young Master Danfang’s henchmen that was taken aback most. It was because this red ruddy old beggar was one of the [Three Marvelous Beggars], was the [Drunken Beggar] Fang Bi. Together with the [Crazy Beggar] Zhu Liang and [Deaf Beggar] Wu Hua, they commanded great respect in the Beggar Sect. What’s more, in the martial fraternity, he was also a first rate fighter!

And now, a protégé guest from the Baotu Manor had simply injured him with just a flicker of his fingers! This enraged the beggars and they were calling for blood…

But Young Master Lingfeng coldly interrupted. “Baotu Manor have always been on the look up for talents. And I Murong Chengye, have always been virtuous. So how would I have tried to use despicable means to back stab the heroes of the fraternity? The one that is slandering earlier, is obviously up to no good and seek to damage the reputation and standing of the Murong Clan. It is really so despicable of him!”

And then he turned to look at someone in the crowd and then a thin but strong man screamed out painfully as he grasped his chest as he bent over.

Even though no one could really see the method in which the thin but strong man came to be injured but they knew instantly that the men that Young Master Lingfeng had brought was highly accomplished. He could injure others without any detection.

Everyone was showing signs of anger or moved in their countenances. Especially the men from the [Conqueror Whip]. It was because the thin and strong man was his protégé!

Young Master Qilin was boiling in rage and he almost could not suppress it for Young Master Lingfeng was behaving with such audacity in his place!

Therefore he tried very hard to suppress his anger and said to him. “Brother Murong. If you really have brought a precious treasure, why not bring it out together with the three legendary treasures so that we could all view it at the same time. But now, will you be kind as to keep your…”

But before he could finish, the long hair elderly old man had unwrapped the last piece of cloth to the red wooden box and took something from within before he flickered his finger again to send something flying straight towards the mouth of the red ruddy old beggar!

“Old beggar! Since you are so gullible, I will then give you some to sample! Or else, others in the martial fraternity will think that the ‘Baotu Manor’ is being petty!”

Now this [Drunken Beggar] Fang Bi was really gusto. Without checking what was checking the intention of the other side and not seeing what was in the box, he opened his mouth and swallowed it.

Not to mention Young Master Duanfang’s men that was taken aback, even though that was not related to him were getting worried for him…

Suddenly after Fang Bi had swallowed the weird stuff, he took from his back a wine gourd and started to drink heavily. “Long hair old freak! The stuff that you feed me, is it a ginseng that is stolen from the Monkey King? Why is it so delicious?”

The long hair elderly man laughed merrily. “Old beggar! Consider yourself most fortunate! Even though this ginseng cannot turn a person into an immortal but it is a thousand-year ginseng king! If you were to circulate your internal energy now, it will save you three years of bitter hardship and improved your martial powers by that much!”

Everyone was stunned into disbelief! This indeed was too precious a gift to give to a stranger!

But the [Drunken Beggar] Fang Bi did not hesitated at all and he began to sit down in a mediation posture. Because everyone was curious, no one tried to move at all and stared at him.

After a short while had passed, Fang Bi jumped up and opened his eyes. Now his eyes were looking sharp and bright. And he was saying, “What a precious treasure! What a precious treasure!”

This type of miracle medicine that could increase one martial power was something that all the pugilists in the martial fraternity could only dream of. And now Young Master Lingfeng’s protégé guest had a whole box of it in his hands. Therefore everyone could only stared at the hands of the long hair elderly man in great envy.

And the long hair elderly man began to mutter, “Whoever decide to join hands with the ‘Baotu Manor’ will have the fortune to enjoy this thousand-year old ginseng king!”

All this while, Zhan Bai was watching coldly by the side. By now, he had realized that the reason why Young Master Lingfeng had set aside this show was to bribe the hearts of everyone into joining his side!

At the same time, he also realized that the other three young masters had in their hands, legendary artifacts that could turn the pugilists in the martial fraternity red with great envy and covet. Not only would the neutral pugilists joined their cause, they would also expand their power and influence through this means!

Using such underhand method was most despicable to Zhan Bai the way he see it and he made a series of humorless laughter.

But Young Master Lingfeng ignored Zhan Bai and after seeing that he had succeeded in his stratagem, he proceeded to say arrogantly. “The Baotu Manor do not just have this thousand-year old ginseng king but we have also the thousand year old linzhi, hundred year old turtle and many many more! All these rare and precious treasures are just waiting for all the heroes of the fraternity to enjoy, if you would just join hands with the Murong Clan…”

The pugilists of the martial fraternity did not like gold and silver as much as these rare and precious herbs. They would even fight to the death just to appreciate a leaf stalk and leaf of these wondrous herbs. And now, they were offered such a good condition to join into alliance with the Murong Clan.

These wondrous herbs were so rare that even if they could search for a hundred years, it would be in vain. Furthermore when they had saw the [Drunken Beggar] had his martial powers increased, they turned green with envy. But because they had considered their own standing and repute, none made the first move yet. But many were already shifting their legs and feet, waiting to rush forward…

When Young Master Qilin had saw that Young Master Lingfeng had succeeded in his cunning stratagem, he was greatly alarmed and said hurriedly. “Everyone! Please enjoy the banquet first! During the moonlight, we still have even rarer precious artifacts to exhibit to everyone!”

But even among the great crowd, Zhan Bai could see a wheelchair moving swiftly away. As his eyesight was paranormal, he could still see it was the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu that was moving swiftly away.

As he was afraid that once Jin Jiu had gone away, he would not appear again, he gave a great sudden shout. “Old senior Jin, do not go yet!”

Chapter 30 Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:03 am

Chapter 31: The Great Stone Formation

Zhan Bai shout was thunderous and it raised the attention of everyone!

Even though everyone was startled, but Zhan Bai gave not a hoot. He sprang in front of the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu and asked, “Zhan Bai wishes to inquiry Senior Jin of a matter. May I know if you can tell me?”

He stopped his wheel chair and furrowed with his eyebrows before replying. “I have not been in the pugilist fraternity for decades. I will not know anything that you ask. Please ask others!" And then he wheeled away once more!

Zhan Bai called out in a hurry. “Wait!…”

But Jin Jiu did not pay heed to him anymore. He did not even turn his head and left.

Therefore Zhan Bai went after him but when he was near two iron entrances, he was stopped by six youths in white. And they had a silvery sword on their hands!

They were about fourteen to fifteen and their swiftness movement skills were also unusually swift. Even Zhan Bai did not know where had they come from. It was as though they were always standing near the iron entrance!

They were staring at him in a fierce manner as though the instance, Zhan Bai had come into their attack radius, they would immediately sprung upon him.

Zhan Bai was slightly taken aback and just then he heard a golden and silver melody voice from behind. “Young Hero Zhan!”

Zhan Bai turned his head and saw Jin Caifeng looking at him with bewildered eyes. She was looking at him as if she was questioning him.

This was the most outstanding of her characterization. Things that she would not want to speak aloud, she would use her eyes to let her intention be known. As a saying goes, ‘The eyes could speak’, prefer to this.

Zhan Bai sighed and thought. “If there is a debt, the debtor must pay. Since Jin Jiu is the one that killed my father, it is not his children’s fault. Now that he is gone, there is nothing I can do now!…”

So he shook his head. “There’s nothing!”

But Jin Caifeng refused to spare him and used an alluring voice that was full of affections as she melancholia asked of him. “But I can tell!”

Even though she did not say so but just these four words were enough to express her intentions in her eyes. Obviously her actual meaning was. “Surely you must have difficulties in your heart. Please tell me so! I will help you…”

Even though he could feel her intentions in her affectionate words but she was after all, the daughter of his enemy! She could never help him to kill her father.

Zhan Bai could only shook his head and had a bitter smile on his face. “Really, there is nothing!”

But Jin Caifeng was still looking at him with her affectionate eyes. And in her eyes, were full of melancholy and sincerity.

Zhan Bai had already read her intentions. She wanted to help him.

Suddenly, the entire grand hall was thrown in darkness as all the lights were extinguished! And there were several shouts of panic!

And then there appeared an eerie and ghastly laughter that lasted for quite some time. It caused all those that heard it to have a spooking feeling!

This really happened too fast and the hundreds of people that were crammed together were in a state of confusion!

Someone shouted loudly. “Hey! What is going on here?”

“Why is the lights all extinguished?”

“Who is that person that just laughed in such a strange manner?”

But in the midst of all these confusions, they could hear the walls moving and the ground collapsing!

Even a powerful earthquake could not vibrate the ground and walls in this manner! It was like the entire place was flipping over and collapsing!

Many tried to run towards the entrance but if they did not run, it would be better. But once they started to run, they lost their balance in the darkness and dropped into the ground!

There were terrified screams everywhere as many were either injured or killed by this great shifting.

In the confusing darkness, Young Master Qilin shouted furiously. “Who trigger the ‘Great Stone Formation’?”

Then it came to the realization of everyone they had fallen into a mechanism trap of the Jin Residence!

But since this was a mechanism trap of the Jin Residence, the one that knew how to trigger this mechanism must also be from the Jin Residence. Why did they trap their Young Master and their Young Mistress in this formation as well?

It was really a weird thing that was truly unexplainable!

Since Young Master Qilin had been shouting angrily, everyone could tell that he was not the one that gave the orders to trigger the formation. From the situation, it seemed like he was trapped in the formation as well!

But the weird laughing voice ignored the rage of Young Master Qilin and did not answer him at all.

While he was shouting in outburst of rages, Jin Caifeng appeared next to him and cried out melancholy. “Elder Brother! The one laughing at the ceiling is older protégé brother. The one that trigger this ‘Great Stone Formation’ must also be him!”

Young Master Qilin was enraged that it was his father’s favorite protégé that did this. “Meng Ruping! Are you crazy? Stop the formation now!”

But the weird laughter continued despite the fact that Young Master Qilin had pointed to the culprit himself.

And the ground continued to sink swiftly!

Suddenly there was another great laughter coming from Young Master Duanfang. “Jin Xianglin! How cruel are you! You could even think of this plan to round everyone off. The entire fraternity is not going to spare you and let you escape alive! Before we die, we are going to let you and your sister pay for it first!”

Young Master Qilin raged. “What do you want?”

Young Master Duanfang answered. “You make use of this hidden trap mechanism to lure the entire martial fraternity into it, thinking of rounding us off. But you not going to escape from the Beggar Sect’s ‘Bamboo Formation’ either!”

Young Master Qilin was so angry to the extreme that he was laughing now. “Hahaha…”

And the weird laughter became even more horrible and terrifying!

Young Master Qilin said. “Brother Sikong! You do not need to slander me. The Jin Residence has no intention to harm anyone. Even if we do, we will not trap ourselves!”

From the darkness, Young Master Qilin laughed coldly before replying. “Who is going to believe you? You trap yourself in your very own mechanism trap? Are you so cowardly that you did not dare to admit it? You dare not accept my challenge?”

Before Young Master Qilin could reply, the [Universal Palm] Yun Zonglong said coldly. “Brother Sikong! Even if you have the intention to fight but in this terrible darkness, how could you differentiate your targets?”

[Drunken Beggar] Fang Bi laughed. “Us beggars have our secretive ways!”

Young Master Duanfang said. “My beggar friends. Take it out for the heroes of the fraternity!”

Even before Young Master Duanfang had finished speaking, there was lights all over as the beggars held a torch in their hands. This was the famous ‘Thousand Mile Fire’ from the beggar sect, a unique tool that only they possessed. This ‘Thousand Mile Fire’ was not afraid of either wind or rain and could not be extinguished!

Now that the torches had been lit, the entire place was instantly bright again!

Tens of top exponents from the Beggar Sect had also surrounded Young Master Qilin and his sister in the midst!

This ‘Great Green Bamboo Formation’ was led by the [Three Marvelous Beggars]. There were exactly eighty-one persons in this formation. And [Drunken Beggar] Fang Bi began to sing. “Start the thousand lotus petals!”

And [Crazy Beggar] Zhu Liang added. “The Western Buddha is descending!”

And the formation started to move and the images of hundreds of green bamboo staves rained upon Young Master Qilin!

[Iron Wing Bird] Ba Tianhe and [Crouching Iron Back Dragon] Gongsun Chu had already been taught how powerful the ‘Beggar Formation’ was. And this new formation was even more powerful than it!

At the same time, scores of top exponents followed the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] to face the attackers!

Today, Young Master Duanfang had led the super fighters from the Beggar Sect here. Coupled with the powerful Beggar Formation and the Great Green Bamboo Formation, the power of the formation tremendous awesome! Even the [Twin Ironguards of the Jin Residence] and all the top exponents of the Jin Residence could only fend off helplessly inside the formation and had no chance for retaliation!

The green bamboo staves were like heavy rain as it lashed furiously at the defenders. And many of the top exponents were heard shrieking in terror as they died under the deadly beatings!

Young Master Qilin turned ashen and he shouted angrily. “You beggars are really too much! Do not blame me for being ruthless! Beware of my secret projectiles!” And he rained the golden coin darts towards them with his right hand, using the ‘Million Scattering’ projector method of throwing.

[Crazed Beggar] Zhu Liang exclaimed happily. “I didn’t expect Young Master to be so generous by throwing gold coins everywhere for us to pick!” Even though he appeared to be delight but he was secretly alarmed at the throwing method.

Quickly, all the beggars placed their staves vertically together like a gigantic wall to deflect the missiles. But still, there were many screams of agony.

Hurriedly, the [Crazed Beggar] turned his head and saw that many of the beggars had been struck. Even the [Deaf Beggar] Wu Hua had a wound on the left side of his head and he too was in agony!

Actually, [Deaf Beggar] martial powers were not beneath that of the [Drunken Beggar] and [Crazed Beggar]. It was because he was deaf and he had always depended on his superior eyesight to fight. But he was unable to see clear because of the constant reflection of the moving torches and the continuous movements of so many people. And so he could not dodge in the nick of time and was wounded!

Even though the golden coin darts had its effect but it only caused the Beggar Formation to evolve even more dangerously as the beggars counterattacked with greater frenzy! Even Young Master Qilin golden coin darts had lost its effect once the beggars became wise to it.

Even more top exponents from the Jin Residence had lost their lives and the situation was becoming critical.

And in lightning quick sequences, tens of green bamboo staves were about to hit Young aster Qilin and his sister!

Young Master Qilin turned white and Jin Caifeng cried out in panicky. It seemed that the Jin brother and sister was in grave danger and they were not going to make it…

Zhan Bai did not know what he was thinking at that moment. He just felt he could not bear to watch this unrivalled beauty died in such horrible wretched state. And he found himself moving unconsciously. He jumped into the air with his Heartless Precious Sword and displayed the ‘As swift as Lightning’ as he jumped into the formation as he helped Jin Caifeng to fend off the deadly staves!

At one go, Zhan Bai had broken more than ten staves! As the beggars loved their starves more than their own lives, they immediately back off, looking quite startled at his appearance!…

Jin Caifeng’s lovely face was still in a state of shock and appall but her bright big eyes were filled with gratitude as she looked longingly into Zhan Bai’s eyes.

And Zhan Bai saw in her eyes, the strong affection that was as ocean deep. He felt a burning sensation on his face and then when he noticed that many were also staring at him as though they were blaming him for interfering. He lowered his head in deep embarrassment…

All of a sudden, everyone would heard the windforce of more golden coin darts as it sped in the air above and it struck the exponents below with explosive force! There were startled cries of surprise as the number of wounded and dead suddenly increased!

But it was not only the beggars that got hit, the rest of the exponents from the other clans were hit as well!

This pissed off the other neutral exponents and they all turned their attentions toward Young Master Qilin!

But the problem is, the one that threw these golden coin darts were not only skilful but marvelous as well. The unknown assailant had knocked out all the torches in that instant as well! And so, it was back to darkness!

It was so dark that no one could see. Even Zhan Bai who had night vision could not see a thing as well!

All of a sudden, there was a snigger from an old man that came from above. “Now that all of you have fallen into my hands. To be my friend or foe, you have to decide. Those who have decided to be friends of the Jin Residence can just state your intention and I will let use the ‘Secret Whispering Skill’ to guide you out of here. But if you want to go against the Jin Residence, then you will need to depend on your own abilities to get out of this ‘Great Stone Formation’. The people from the Jin Residence will not hinder you if you choose to go against…”

But before he could finish, there was angry shouts everywhere that interrupted him!

Suddenly the [Origin Finger] Sikong Jin shouted, “Second brother! Are you forgetting that I am your old friend?”

[Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu laughed aloud. “Sikong Jin! Even though the world is so vast but I afraid it is so hard to find another as treacherous and sinister as you are! You used a fake ‘Ginseng Cinnabar’ to trick me and caused me to lose both my legs. And now you have also stolen my Water Ascension Jade. Do you know that it is worse than death for me? And now you are still exclaiming old friend here and old friend there! Frankly speaking, it is all thanks to you, that the others are also trapped in this ‘Great Stone Hell’…”

When everyone heard that, they were filled to the brim with anger. It was because of their feuds that had dragged so many innocents!

[Universal Palm] Yun Zonglong said. “Second Brother! You can’t possible drag me as well right? After all, we had sworn to undergo life and death together in the past…”

Jin Jiu laughed even more hilariously. “We are brothers? Haha! It had already ended many years ago after we did that deed. Moreover, we had also sworn not to interfere with one another after that incident and also to forget about the past! But now, when you are in difficulties, you still have the cheek to call me second brother! Let me tell you honestly then! Today I can spare all the others but I would not spare you all!…”

Fan Fei the [Conqueror Whip] knew that he was referring to the rest of the Jiangnan Seven Heroes. So he whispered to Yun Zonglong. “Forth brother! Don’t waste your breath on him anymore! Do you still remember that time when he plotted to kill Big Brother, he was so ruthless and heartless! Now that we are trapped in his trap mechanism, it is futile to say more. Why not we…”

But Zhan Bai had heard it even though the voice was very low! It was because his eight wondrous meridians and channels had long been cleared and now his hearing was superbly sharp!

At the same time, Zhan Bai concluded from this conversation that Jin Jiu was the one that masterminded the plan and then the six of them had joined hands to kill his father, shared the treasures and then departed…

As his rage mounted, Zhan Bai wished that he could immediately find this Jin Jiu so as to avenge his father!

Suddenly, a warm and intimate hand caught hold of his hand. At the same time, a light orchid fragrance filled his nostrils. Before he could protest, he was pulled away by this intimate hand.

Another reason why he could not reacted immediately was when the hand had touched him, he was jolted as though a lightning had just struck him. And a weird and intimate feeling overwhelmed him. Secondly, in this darkness, he had no idea if it was a friend or a foe. He actually forgot to resist and was pulled away by this intimate hand.

He was led to a narrow passage in the walls and in that narrow passage was a stairways that was leading up. As he followed the steps, soon he found out he had escaped from the Great Stone Formation. Even though it was dark outside, but he had regained his night vision once more.

And he saw the slim and beautiful back view of Jin Caifeng.

Zhan Bai was in a state of rapid confusion. There were a few times when he wanted to shake her hand off but his heart refused to obey. There were a few times when he wanted to open his mouth to ask her where was she taking him but there was no voice coming out from his throat.

He could only follow her in a state of daze as her jaded hand took him intimately away.

Suddenly, after a while, he heard the sound of a door and there was another passage. Finally, they exited from the passage to the outside. They had appeared from a make-believe mountain to a place with many pavilions. Obviously, it was a very large garden.

She was so beautiful under the moonlight. She was as captivating as the flower as she laughed sweetly. “It is a lucky thing that I know of this secret passage. Or else, we will accompany them in the depths of the earth forever!”

When Zhan Bai heard Jin Caifeng addressing them as ‘We’, it sounded so intimate that he felt so sweet in his head but he quickly regained his senses. “Forever in the depths of the earth! The grand hall cannot be raised again?”

Jin Caifeng turned around and. As her slim body turned around, her extremely beautiful and exquisite beauty captivated Zhan Bai. She looked at him and replied. “I am not too sure about it. When I was little, I heard my father mentioned before that once the trap mechanism had been triggered, it would sink to the depths of the earth forever and could not be raised anymore. No matter how powerful a fighter is, there can be no escape!…”

Zhan Bai more or less became more sober now and was no longer enthralled by her captivating posture. Without waiting for her to finish, he smiled coldly. “What makes you think anyone will believe you!”

Jin Caifeng slim body took two steps forward and lifted her elegant face. “You…do you think I will lie to you?”

Zhan Bai laughed. “Your brother and all the rest of the Jin Residence, will they also be bury with the rest of the people as well?”

Jin Caifeng chuckled. “My brother naturally will not be so silly. He know the way out too!”

Zhan Bai said, “But your brother did not follow us out…” When he had said ‘Us’, he felt a burning sensation on his face and his heart was beating unusually fast too. He had suddenly remembered the intimate moments earlier and was at a loss to continue.

And she was laughing even more lustrous than ever. “There isn’t just one route out of that ‘Great Stone Formation’ and the exits are not the same as well. Moreover, after the mechanism had been triggered, it is also impossible to walk inside the narrow passage if the steps are wrong too…”

But Zhan Bai was quite indignant as he said, “I would never expect that the renowned Jin Residence that have much honor and reputation in the martial fraternity would use such despicable methods to bury others! Finally I have experienced it (Sarcasm)! Fine! And Good bye!” He walked away in anger without waiting for her reply.

Jin Caifeng beautiful countenance turned ashen as Zhan Bai berated the Jins. For a moment, she was too startled to react. When Zhan Bai had turned around and walked away in broad strides, she felt like her heart had been stabbed by a knife.

Suddenly, she plunged forward Zhan Bai as she cried out softly. “Do not go yet!…”

Zhan Bai could sense a windforce behind the back of his head. He thought that Jin Caifeng had flew into a rage because he had shamed her. And now she was attacking him behind his back!

Therefore he turned around to deliverer a blow! But Jin Caifeng did not dodge or evade as she opened her arms to plunge forward into him!

But Zhan Bai had already unleashed his palm when he saw that her intention was just to plunge into his embrace and had no intention to assault him! Even though Zhan Bai had a diamond heart now but how could he bear to harm this defenseless and captivating maiden? He tried to withdrawn his ruthless blow by sucking back his internal power but it was too late! Even though he had withdrawn a majority of his martial power but there was still thirty percent of his power left!

There was a cranking sound as he hit the beautiful and affectionate Jin Caifeng on her soft body!

Jin Caifeng cried out delicately as she received a powerful jolt. Her frail body stumbled for a while before she fell onto the ground…

Chapter 31 Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:04 am

Chapter 32: Rivalry

Zhan Bai embraced Jin Caifeng just before she fell onto the ground. She was so warm and fragrance in his embrace. Even though it was a critical situation, Zhan Bai could not control the rapid beating of his heart.

But when he saw her pale face and that she was biting her lips in agony. Obviously, her injuries were not light. He was filled with pity and remorse for having injured such a wondrous beauty with his hands.

He was muttering. “Maiden Jin, I did not want to hurt you on purpose…”

Jin Caifeng struggled to keep her eye lids opened. When she saw that she was in Zhan Bai’s embrace, she was terrified and like a little child that did wrong, was pleading him for forgiveness as she delicately gasped, “I…won’t blame you. Zhan…As long as you know my what is in my heart…is good enough…”

Zhan Bai’s head was like a thunderbolt that had been struck. The thing that he had been afraid of had finally happened! This young mistresss Jin, did not even bear a grudge at him for hitting her. Moreover, she was filled with affections and tender sentiments as she tried to speak. Was it not obvious to him?

She, had fallen in love with him! And he, obviously he knew that she was the daughter of his hatred foe, that was why he must never, never accept her love. But now, his conscious had taken over him. Hatred and logical reasoning did not existed now. He must not deceive his own feelings anymore. He had also fall in love with her!

But because Jin Caifeng forced herself to mutter those words that came from her heart, she had caused her blood to reverse and when she had finished, blood began to drip from her tiny mouth!

Zhan Bai was startled from fright! He abandoned all thoughts of inappropriateness and carried her slim body. And then he hit three accupoints on her bosom and then pressed his palm on her ‘Qimen’ accupoint point that was on her bosom!

He could feel a softness floating across her breasts that caused him to be electrified. And the blood in his body seemed as if it were rushing, causing him almost to lose control of himself…

“Oh…” Jin Caifeng’s delicately grasped. Was it pain or was it because she had finally realized her dreams? She had glimpsed Zhan Bai moving his palm to massage her bosoms, therefore she had grasped aloud.

Zhan Bai was even more startled and he suppressed the uncontrollable wild thoughts in him as he channeled his vital energy into the palm. He said in a low voice. “Maiden Jin, I am treating your injuries. Please channel your vital energy towards me as well…

Jin Caifeng gave him a weird but charming look. Was she displeased or was she delightful? But she did not say anything but took in a deep breath and focused on mustering her vital energy to link up with Zhan Bai. She felt a warm flow in her Qimen and then her pain eased and she felt comfortable.

And then she felt a warm energy flowing through his palm started to move up and down, then down her naval. She was not only feeling absolutely comforting but a silk tickling was also overwhelming her. It was something that she had never experience before. Then suddenly, her slim body started to tremble and there was a cloud of sudden redness on her pale captivating face…

“Ah!” Jin Caifeng muttered dreamily with her eyes closed. “I do not want you to call me Maiden Jin…”

Zhan Bai was in a daze too as he muttered. “Then how do I address you?”

Jin Caifeng replied. “Call me Feng Meimei (sister)…”

Zhan Bai’s mind was like a blank, he had totally forgotten about his vengeance. “Feng Meimei…”

“Ah!” Jin Caifeng took a deep breath before she exclaimed. “Zhan Gege, you are so nice…”

Actually, Jin Caifeng was not injured too badly. Under the wondrous treatment intrigue formula of the Soul Binder Sacred Scripture, Zhan Bai seemed to overrate her injuries. She had since recovered from her slight injury. Moreover as Zhan Bai was worried for her, he had almost used the ‘Vital energies to Heal the Accupoint’ method to infuse great amount of internal power into her to heal her. The reason why they were still in this embrace was because they had been drunk with feelings of tender sentiments for one another and was not aware of anything else.

And then there was an icy cold smirk under the moonlight, coming from among the flowers arrangements! And the lovers that were embracing in rivers of love were immediately taken aback!

Zhan Bai was the first to react as he helped Jin Caifeng who was in his embrace hurriedly up before he said in a deep voice. “Who is that?”

A dark slim figure was seen among the flower arrangements and was as fast as lightning as it re-appeared at the top of the stone pavilion.

A beautiful young maiden with a slim figure, as white as snow, her hair was flurrying in the night breeze and she looked as light as a willow leaf. This maiden had an innocent and naïve look on her delicate face. She was none other than Wan’Er!

Wan’Er laughed in jeer. “The moon is already so high now and the people that are dating have not yet departed huh!”

Zhan Bai was feeling extremely awkward and embarrassed but he put on a thick skin as he asked. “Wan’Er, what are you doing here?…”

“Yo!” Wan’Er gave a jealousy and slippery answer. “I am here to play huh! Anyway, I am not the one that is being embraced and has someone calling her Meimei…”

This immediately had the effect of provoking Jin Caifeng and she lifted her captivating face as she shouted delicately. “Where does this wild girl comes from? How dare you come to the Jin Residence in such a manner!”

Wan’Er slim eyebrows titled a little as she said, “You better be more polite to me. Or else, I shall teach you a lesson!”

Jin Caifeng was the young mistress of the Jin Residence and no one had ever treated her with such disrespect. Not even her parents and her brother dare to say a single word of disrespected lines to her. Therefore she was so angry that her slim body started to shake. “Great! You actually have the cheek to lecture me instead. If you do not apologize immediately, I’ll make sure you will never leave the Jin Residence alive!”

Wan’Er laughed coldly. “What a loaf of empty talks! Aren’t you afraid your tongue will be cut off? Just you alone, do you think you can retain me!”

Jin Caifeng shook with rage as she answered. “What a sharp tongue you have! Take this then!” And she launched forward with two strokes. Her techniques were indeed extraordinary!

But Wan’Er martial levels were simple too high. That was because the [Divine Ape] Tie Ling had taught her all his skills during the time she was at the Mountain Rock of the Twelve Caves. This caused her martial skill levels to exceed that of a top exponent in the martial fraternity and she could now be classified as a super exponent!

Even though Jin Caifeng’s techniques were most marvelous and extremely deadly but Wan’Er still carried an icy smile as she moved her legs slightly and the two techniques were voided! And instantly, Wan’Er had caught Jin Caifeng’s right wrist with her left hand!

Jin Caifeng was extremely startled! She had not expected such a young maiden would have such wonderful reflexes. Not only did she evaded two of her deadly masterstrokes but at the same time, her right wrist was so coincidentally caught by her! Her timing was unbelievably skilful!

Not only that, she could also feel her the soft windforce of her fingers on her skin as the windforce rubbed painfully against her. The potential of that young maiden’s internal strength was vast and shocking!

In her startled state and when Wan’Er had suddenly caught hold of her right waist, she almost screamed out in pain!

But that was not over yet, Wan’Er had at the same time, brandished her right hand as a blade and slashed against her head!

Even though Jin Caifeng managed to wriggle out her right wrist now but she was unable to evade anymore and could only watch in horror as Wan’Er was about to hack her head!…

Do not look down upon Wan’Er frail and delicate small hand. Imbued with internal power, her hand was as sharp as a edged weapon! Moreover, the speed of the windforce that accompanied her made it obvious that the power to be unleashed was indeed not to be underestimated!

Zhan Bai was taken aback with shock. He shouted out hurriedly. “Wan’Er! Stop!…”

But Wan’Er seemed not notice and continued her onslaught!

Zhan Bai sped forward like a flash of lightning and pushed Jin Caifeng away with his left hand five to six steps away while he took Wan’Er bow with his right hand!

There was a resounding sound of collusion as their hands clashed against one aother!

Wan’Er slim body was jolted and she was forced step steps backward before she stood still as her face turned white with ashen as she stared angrily at Zhan Bai as though she was about to breath fire…

Jin Caifeng had a close shave with death and she was both embarrassed and angry at the same time.

At the same time Wan’Er was pushed back, Zhan Bai felt his a burning and painful sensation on his palm. He was secretly astonished with Wan’Er pure internal power. But on the surface, he pretended to be calm as he asked. “Wan’Er, you and Jin Caifeng have no vendetta with one another. Why did you use such deadly stances on sight?”

Wan’Er was extremely displeased that Zhan Bai had rescued her rival in love. And now Zhan Bai was so protective of Jin Caifeng that she felt a sense of grievance that she almost wept.

But she forcefully suppressed her tears so as not to let it flow. She kicked the ground violently as she bit her lips hatefully at Zhan Bai. “From now on, I never want to see you ever, ever again huh!…”

With that, she turned her head around to fly off.

Suddenly there was a loud shout from behind a large tree. “Where do you think you are going? Take this!” And a shadowy person launched several flying missiles towards Wan’Er!

It was a good thing that Wan’Er ‘Walking in the Air Miracle’ had reached a superb artistic stage of achievement that she was able to do a ‘Overturning the Cloud’ movement as she evaded the secret projectiles in mid-air! The attacker had been vicious enough to catch her off-guard but still she maneuvered calmly in the face of such adversary and narrowly avoided being hit by inches!

Even Zhan Bai had sweated for her!

Wan’Er had love Zhan Bai deeply. So when she suddenly she had discovered that he was dating another girl, she was filed with uncontrollable rage. And now this young maiden heart that used to be so demure and gentle, was now filled with fires of jealousy, anguish, resentment and she was changed!

She changed her movement in mid-air again, with the intention of hammering her assailant. She mustered ten folds of her martial power and lifted her hands towards the head of this despicable assailant!

The assailant was stunned! He had never expected that his target would be able to change her movements in mid-air, much less dodged his uniquely secret projectiles. When he saw that Wan’Er had charged towards him in such a frenzied manner, he was taken aback and had moved slightly backward as he quickly drew the long sword that was on his back…

But at this moment, numerous more of these similar missiles flew towards Wan’Er’s back in another direction and these secret projectiles flew in a more marvelous and profoundly manner than this assailant! Obviously, the new assailant was much more expert and powerful!

Zhan Bai was shocked and he shouted hurriedly. “Wan’Er, be very careful! There are more secret projectiles coming towards your back!”

Because Zhan Bai knew that it was useless simply to warn her. She was unlikely to evade these missies. Therefore while he was shouting, he had already sped forward to fend the missiles for her!

Quite a few of these secret projectiles were knocked out by Zhan Bai’s powerful palm force but there were still tens of powerful of such missiles that were still heading towards Wan’Er!

Wan’Er had already sensed that there were more of these secret projectiles coming from behind her back. But because she had despised the first assailant that had assaulted her from the sly, she had already mustered a great deal of strength and had no more strength left to evade in mid-air anymore from the incoming missiles.

But because her will to live was very strong, she did her best to evade those missiles and at the same time, unleashed the ‘Thousand Weigh Fall’ as she descended rapidly with both hands on the first assailant!

The first assailant had a sword in his hand but when he saw that Wan’Er palm force was astonishing fierce, he did not dare to put up a fight and hopped eight feet away.

There was a huge crashing sound as Wan’Er missed with her palms and instantly, there were two huge and deep pits that appeared in the ground!

To say that a young maiden of that age could be capable of such awesome palm force was totally unbelievable!

But after Wan’Er had landed, she began to move unevenly and her beautiful jaded face was a ghastly white! And she looked like she could topple anytime!

The first assailant was laughing hilariously. He had a missing left arm and now he was thrusting his long sword with his right hand towards her bosoms!

While in mid-air, two of the secret projectiles had struck her. One on her thigh, the other on her left rib! She could only felt agonizing pain and her bones could feel a chilling pain that caused her to tremble uncontrollable. When she had landed, she could no longer walk steadily. The only reason why she did not fall, was because of her amazing fortitude to endure the pain.

But she had no strength left in her, for her limbs had turned soft. She could only watch in sheer horror as the first assailant came after her with his long sword. She sighed with regrets in her heart. “Alas! Who would expect that I would die in front of this heartless lover! If I have known, I may as well die much earlier! At least I can still preserve a beautiful impression for him. And now, and now…” Wan’Er could only mutter to herself as she did not have any strength to resist the attack. But what hurt her most was not death itself. Her dream lover was having a rendezvous with another girl and she had witnessed it with her very eyes. That was what hurt her the most and it shattered the heart and dreams of her first love.

All of a sudden, Zhan Bai shouted aloud. “Meng Ruping! Stay your hand!”

There was a violent clash and Wan’Er opened her dazing eyes, and saw that the young man a missing left arm had suddenly turned a gravely white. There was blood in his mouth and his sword was no longer in his hand. It seemed that not only did he not slay her yet and instead he was badly wounded!

And Wan’Er turned and saw that Zhan Bai, whose was her beloved and whom she had loved deeply was now standing besides herself.

Wan’Er’s who was broken in her spirit and heart, was joyous all of a sudden. She muttered to herself. “It is Bai Gege that have saved me! Really! This is so wonderful! This is so wonderful! Ba Gege, Bai Gege, even if your sister is to die now, I will still feel so blissful…” All of a sudden, a sharp pain pierced through her heart, causing her to lose consciousness of herself…

Chapter 32 Ended
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PostSubject: Re: The Swordsman Journey Book One by Gulong   Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:04 am

Chapter 33: The Ruthless Jin Jiu

Zhan Bai embraced Wan’Er who had slipped into unconsciousness. He saw that she was now breathing with great irregularity and was at her last gasp. He flew into a great tantrum and shouted furiously. “Against an innocent girl, you people from the Jin Residence could even be that despicable as to strike from behind one’s back. Is this the so call honorable reputation that your Jin Residence is renowned for? What a terrible let down!...”

All of a sudden, there was a terrible yet chilling laughter that came from the other direction. And the renowned [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu appeared in his wheelchair from behind the flower arrangements!

And behind him was six strong muscular men and six youths dressed in white, each wielding a sword in their hands. And they were staring at Zhan Bai like they were predators!

Jin Jiu had a cold smirk as he said. “Only the victor calls the shot! There are too many fights in the pugilist fraternity. Whoever remains standing till the very last moment, will then be the hero. So what is the difference between a honorable fight and a secret attack?”

When Zhan Bai saw that it was the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] that had shown himself, he was teething with rage. “Loathsome thief! Wily old man! How dare you put on such a pretense of goodness! You kill your swore brothers, use the gold and silver that you have looted to buy over all the desperate people in the fraternity, so as to expand your vast evil influence! But today, consider your bad in encountering me for I’ll end your monstrous evil crimes!”

And he took out his Heartless Precious Sword with a loud clang. “Jin Jiu! Now Surrender your life!”

Jin Jiu was greatly startled when he was scolded by Zhan Bai in such an emotional manner. Therefore he stared at him for quite a while before he asked. “How dare you tell me off in such a manner! I will surely tear you to bits! But, judging from your age, you seem to bear a grudging hatred towards me. It is so interesting. I have not been in the pugilist fraternity for many years and how would I possible be a subject of your vengeance? Are you being manipulated by others to oppose me? Now speak! I am waiting for your reply!”

Zhan Bai was extremely sorrowful as he laughed hilariously. “Then you mean to say that you [Heavenly Bronze Coin] is a good guy instead. Let me ask you then, do you know the lead of the [Jiangnan Seven Heroes], the [Thunder Sword] Zhan Yuntian?”

Not only Jin Jiu was taken aback when he heard the name of the Thunder Sword but everyone else were also taken aback. Jin Jiu stared at him, before finally replying. “I heard that your clan name is a Zhan. Then are you his descendant?”

Zhan Bai answered. “Are you surprised and shocked? Maybe you have thought that my father have no heirs and after you have killed your swore brother, you have thought that there will be no one to come after you for vengeance! Haha! But the Heavens actually have eyes and Zhan Yuntian’s son have come to take your life today! Haha…”

After Zhan Bai had finished, Jin Jiu looked pale but he did not say anything. No one knew if he was surprised or alarmed…

“Father!” Jin Caifeng plunged forward to his side, as she was filled to the brim with her tears. “Is Young Hero Zhan speaking the truth? Father! Your daughter thinks that it must be a grave misunderstanding. Someone must be trying to sow discord. Your daughter believed that father is a good man and would never harm your swore brother! Father! Hurry and explain it to Young Hero Zhan now so that this misunderstanding will be resolved. Father, please say something, oh please say something!” She was now crying and pleading.

Jin Jiu looked at his daughter who was pleading with him in great grief. Then his expression changed and he stared fiercely at Zhan Bai. “Indeed you are right! I have killed Zhan Yuntian! But it is not what you have thought. Your father is a devil that bullied us, six brothers all the time. Unable to bear with him any longer, we decided to join hands with one another to kill him. It was he that first disregarded our brotherly affection. Therefore we have a fair and square duel with him. The dead must not blame the living!

Zhan Bai almost exploded with anger and clenched his teeth as he listened. Whether his father could be avenged lie in tonight’s decisive battle. Therefore he must not be too emotional and let anger boiled through to his head…

Jin Caifeng continued to cry out in great grief. “Impossible! This can’t be true at all!...” And she fainted just besides Jin Jiu’s wheelchair.

Some one once said that men lived for their careers while women lived for love. Jin Caifeng had lost her beloved mother while she was still young and her father replaced her mother as the idol in her heart. And since she was very young, he had always been her idol. Not only did she entrust her trust to him, he was also her emblem of glory.

But now, this idol, together with the holy temple had collapsed in her heart and shattered her young heart!

A humane father may not need to be perfect in her heart. If he was wrong, she could always think of a reason to defend her father and to forgive him.

But now, this father was the one that had destroyed her dreams; her first love was hence shattered to bits. She could not forgive him and moreover her heart had died.

But the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu demonstrated his heart of stone once more, by refusing to pay heed to his daughter’s cry of pleading. Even when she had fainted from a broken heart, he remained gloomy.

He said to Zhan Bai. “After tens of year, this matter should already been forgotten and no one will never know that Zhan Yuntian still have a son that is living in this world. But today, since you have the guts to admit it, then I will not make things too difficult for you. I can allow you to leave. But if you overrate yourself and wants to oppose me still, it is still up to you!”

And then he laughed aloud twice before adding. “But I can tell you the results. You are simply courting your own death!”

Zhan Bai answered him bitterly. “Can I still be considered my father’s son if I cannot avenge him? Since you have the courage to admit your sins, today, I Zhan Bai, will use your blood to make an offering to my father above!”

Once he finished, he put Wan’Er down and flew towards Jin Jiu with his Heartless Precious Sword!

His first sword was the ‘Wind Thunder Diagram Swordplay’. His sword was shrieking aloud as though it was a thunderbolt as cold swarming sword energy radiated in hues as he thrust his sword towards Jin Jiu’s chest with the ‘Raging Thunder and Violent Wind’ sword stroke. Such was the awesome might of this swordplay, that no wonder the ‘Wind Thunder Diagram Swordplay’ was known as the Epitome Swordplay.

When Jin Jiu saw the ferocity of Zhan Bai’s swordplay, he was taken aback and turned his wheelchair around! It was because he had not expected Zhan Bai’s swordplay to be this awesome and was definitely not beneath that of Zhan Yuntian famous Thunder Sword Swordplay!

As Jin Jiu was only concerned about his own safety, he had forgotten that his daughter was still lying on the ground! Even though he had to wheel around but he was extremely nimble and agile and not even Zhan Bai’s awesome stroke could hit him!

As Zhan Bai was too focused on his vengeance, his attacks had been extremely vicious and when Jin Jiu had dodged away in his wheelchair, he found his sword energy upon the unconscious Jin Caifeng!

Even though Jin Jiu might have a heart of stone but when he saw that his daughter was going to perish instantly from Zhan Bai’s sword, he shouted panicky in a loud voice. “Do not hurt my daughter!…”

Zhan Bai was startled as well and when he saw that he was going to hit Jin Caifeng, he immediately could not bear to strike, therefore, he mustered up the Thousand Weigh Fall and to take away his sword stance.

But the six youths in white that were standing behind Jin Jiu had been through the most rigorous training. Since from a very young age, they had been trained to be loyal to only their master and was not aware of the right and wrong of the pugilist fraternity. When they saw that Zhan Bai had come with a sword, they immediately reacted by forming their six swords in a single stroke ‘Everything under the Sun’ as though it was a thick silver wall and unleashed it towards Zhan Bai!

There were several flying clangs as the youths’ swords flew from their burning and painful hands!

But Zhan Bai did not pursue his advantage and instead, he breezed in a backward direction. It was because Zhan Bai had a considerate character. Even though he was focused on avenging for his father, he had not lost his benevolent air. He was not willing to harm the unconscious Jin Caifeng and even more unwilling to hurt these six youths!

But his enemy was not as benevolent as him and when he had breezed in a backward direction, the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu released a scattering of his famous ‘Bronze Coins’!

Jin Jiu was famous for his ‘Bronze Coins’ and hence originated his nick. When he lost the use of his legs, he increased the intensely of his proficiency with the ‘Bronze Coin Darts’. And it was now unrivalled in the entire fraternity! The way he threw these darts were even more expertise than his son, Jin Xianglin and his protégé disciple Meng Ruping by many manifolds! The ‘Bronze Coin Darts’ were later renamed the ‘Golden Coin Darts’ when he became exceedingly rich.

Before Zhan Bai had even stood firm on the ground, he was met with an onslaught of missiles. He had to dance his sword around into a wall of sword in a bid to protect himself!

Zhan Bai managed to deflect the missiles away.

But the [Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu was a master of his own trade. Just when Zhan Bai was deflecting the missiles in a state of frenzy, he sent another of the bronze coin dart flying towards the ground!

Zhan Bai did not know of his true intention but then he saw the single bronze coin dart had bounced off the ground and had deflected towards his underneath!

Zhan Bai thought to himself. “You have thrown so many of these gold coins but I can still deflect it. What can a single gold coin do?…”

Before he could gather his thoughts, that bronze coin had suddenly spin to his waist. Just when he was about to block it with his sword, that bronze coin had suddenly spin towards his leg!

Zhan Bai had a sudden fright as he tried to turn his legs and turned his body around hastily. That bronze coin had spin and cut a hole on his pants!

Luckily, it had only brushed through and did not touched his flesh but Zhan Bai got such a great fright that he had broke into a cold sweat. It was because he knew that these bronze coin darts were cloaked with a powerful poison. Last time when Meng Ruping had inflicted upon him the poisoned dart, he was luckily that Jin Caifeng had applied the antidote on him.

But today, his identity had been known and he must not be careless. If he were to get wounded by it, there would be no antidote anymore!

Jin Jiu laughed aloud. “This is my ‘Life-stealing Bronze Coin’ technique. Just this alone, you already have difficulties handling it. If I were to release my deadly ‘The Starry Bronze Coins’ technique, your puny life will surely have ended!”

And Jin Jiu started to scatter more of the numerous bronze coin darts towards him!

As Zhan Bai knew how powerful this technique was by now, he did not dare to block it with his sword anymore but focuses on evading and dodging those missiles. But just when he was evading the first wave, Jin Jiu had released a second wave of secret projectiles upon him!

The second wave had headed towards the ground and it rebounded off the ground underneath him!

This threw Zhan Bai into a great panic as he danced in great confusion to avoid these secret projectiles that seemed to be everywhere!

Therefore he thought that if he continued it in this way, he would surely perish. If he did not perish, he would die of exhaustion. Why not, sprang towards that crook and took a chance? Even if he died together with him, it was worth it…

Having made up his mind, he immediately sprang forward but Jin Jiu seemed to be waiting in anticipation as he laughed eerily at him. “Do not waste your effort to think of a stratagem. Even your father could not escape from my techniques, do you think you are able to?”

And Jin Jiu released numerous number of bronze coin darts towards Zhan Bai that had charged headlong into the missiles!

Zhan Bai was greatly taken aback as he was struck!

[Heavenly Bronze Coin] Jin Jiu began to laugh crazily. “Rascal, the ‘Starry Bronze Coins’ united you with your maker…”

Zhan Bai cried out in his heart. “I am finished…” As he felt chilling pain that pierced right through to his heart!

Suddenly he remembered his unfinished vendetta. The task to avenge for his father was in his hands and now? He was not willing to die simply in this manner!

When he thought of this, he managed to muster that little bit of vital energies that had not been shattered to seal off his accupoints and to protect his heart. He lifted a breath of vital energy, goodness know how did he manage to gather this amazing strength as he managed to jump on the top of the tall walls of the garden even though he was heavily wounded!

Jin Jiu laughed aloud. “Junior! Are you thinking to escape? Those that are afflicted by the poison of my bronze coin darts will surely die within the next six hours!”

Zhan Bai’s eyes had turned black and he was tipsy as he stood on the walls. He scolded aloud as he suppressed the great pain. “Loathsome thief! Tonight I shall spare you temporary. One of these days, I will surely return here to settle this blood debt with you!…” And he stumbled over the walls.

Jin Jiu was shouting in the garden. “Do not let that Junior escape and hurry get him!”

In a series of thunderous great shouts, the top exponents of the Jin Residence moved to execute his command.

While Zhan Bai was outside the walls, he could still hear Jin Caifeng crying miserable as she pleaded. “Father! Let him go…”

But Zhan Bai refused to allow himself to be captured as he fled with the top exponents in hot pursue.

It was a good thing there was a large crowd in the city that was still celebrating the Yuanxiao Festival. This gave him a chance to blend into the crowd for the top exponents of the Jin Residence did not see which direction he had headed!

Zhan Bai was in a daze and was only semi-conscious as he made his way to a riverbank.

There were many lamps floating on the river. These lamps contained the hopes and wishes of the people that were celebrating this Yuanxiao Festival. Those, whose lamps did not capsized or sink into the river might have their wishes come truth…

Zhan Bai, however collapsed alongside the riverbank. It was as though his wish had failed to materialize…

Chapter 33 Ended
Book One Ended
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