Not expecting that he would be knocked down by a single slap from Feng Ziyi despite using his full strength, Zhang Yu forcefully pulled his head out from the ground and glared at Feng Ziyi with frenzied eyes.

He was a person blessed by the heavens. Even within the powerful Zhang Clan, he was known as an invincible existence to those around his age. He thought that even if he wasn't a match for Feng Ziyi, he would at least be able to put up a good fight. Yet, who could have thought that he would be knocked down before he could even get onto the dueling ring?!

And most importantly of all... he was even viewed in such disdain!

The sheer humiliation he felt from Feng Ziyi's actions left him feeling a crazed inside.

But as angry as he was, he also swiftly realized that Feng Ziyi had managed to enter Phantasmal Space realm a step earlier than him... It might only be a small step of difference between the two of them, but this small rift simply unbreachable.

Forcing himself to calm down, several doubts began surfacing in Zhang Yu's mind, "If he has already reached Phantasmal Space realm, why does he still want to challenge Zhang shi?"

If Zhang Xuan's strength was around their level, it could still be understandable that Feng Ziyi could feel threatened by his existence and wanted to challenge him in order to establish his dominance. However, with his breakthrough to Phantasmal Space realm, the latter would be considered to have reached the higher echelons of the Sanctum of Sages, such that even some of the senior students wouldn't be a match for him at all. It simply didn't seem logical that Feng Ziyi would still be so caught up with a mere freshman despite his immense strength.


While Zhang Yu was still in a state of confusion, a dull thud suddenly echoed, and a figure suddenly flew over in his direction and landed right beside him.

It was Zhang Zhuo, whom he had thought would win without any trouble earlier.

In this moment, Zhang Zhuo's face was swollen like a pig's head, an indescribably wretched sight. The ferocious aura that he commanded previously had vanished without a trace, and he was lying with a rather bizarre posture on the ground.

Zhang Yu's eyebrows immediately shot up in disbelief. He hurriedly turned to the stage and saw Chen Leyao walking down the dueling ring with a slightly pale face, but there was an exhilarated gleam in her eyes. She headed straight toward Zhang Xuan's direction before clasping her fist and bowing deeply.

"Impossible... This is impossible! How can she win against Zhang Zhuo?"

It was understandable why he would be sent flying by Feng Ziyi in a single slap—after all, the latter had already reached Phantasmal Space realm—but Zhang Zhuo wielded the absolute advantage in the earlier battle! It was irrational for it to end in such an outcome!

It could be said that Zhang Zhuo's loss was even more inconceivable than his own loss.

"Impossible?" Hearing those words, Chen Leyao puffed up her chest angrily and harrumphed, "If I can't even defeat Zhang Zhuo after Zhang shi's guidance, wouldn't that mean that I am regressing as time passes by? Zhang shi's guidance isn't something that just anyone can learn!"

Zhang Xuan was their young court chief's teacher, and it was a huge insult to compare the guidance from such an esteemed elder to that of an insignificant figure like Zhang Yu!

"But…" Zhang Yu clenched his fists tightly in indignation.

It was one thing for him to lose to the Phantasmal Space realm Feng Ziyi, but to lose to a mere Leaving Aperture realm fellow as well... He couldn't accept this! He just couldn't accept this!

This won't do. Others will eventually find out that I have offered pointers to Zhang Zhuo... What will become of my honor if I were to be found losing to someone as weak as Zhang Xuan? Zhang Yu narrowed his eyes menacingly.

Should I just challenge him to a battle? If I subdue him with absolute strength, I should be able to suppress with those rumors…

At this moment, Feng Ziyi's voice suddenly sounded from the dueling ring once more, "Zhang shi, show me if your full strength is really as formidable as you have put it out to be!"

"As you wish." Seeing that the other party was determined to try him out, Zhang Xuan unhesitatingly leaped up to the dueling ring and tapped his finger forward.

Wu wu wu wu!

Over a hundred swords immediately materialized all around Zhang Xuan. Every single one of them was pointed toward Feng Ziyi, each of them carrying a solemn aura.

"Good!" Having tasted how powerful the sword art was earlier, Feng Ziyi dared not to take it lightly.

He immediately drew out a semicircle with the sword in his hand and used it as a medium to channel his sword qi together, thus forming something reminiscent of a light barrier.

"Is that... the Master Teacher Pavilion headquarters' Descending Cotton Sword Art?" Zhang Yu exclaimed grimly.

"Descending Cotton Sword Art?" a bewildered individual amidst the crowd asked.

"It's a Saint high-tier battle technique created by a master teacher in the Master Teacher Pavilion headquarters while observing the drifting cotton in the air. In terms of defensive ability, it's only second to the Flowing Water Swordsmanship of the Third Sanctum Head. Once executed, a world full of flying cotton would drift around reminiscent of falling flowers, creating an effect similar to that of the ultimate technique of the Yinyang Court, the Fallen Snow Sword…" Zhang Yu explained.

At this moment, he finally realized just how powerful Feng Ziyi was. Even without using his prowess as a Phantasmal Space realm expert, it would be nigh impossible for him to defeat the latter once the Descending Cotton Sword Art was activated.

Unless... he activated the ability of his unique bloodline!

But unless in a life and death situation, it would be best for him not to tap into that power, or else he would only be depleting himself needlessly. Even though he commanded quite a high standing in the Zhang Clan, which granted him access to a lot of resources, recovering from the side effects of activating his bloodline would still be extremely troublesome.

Despite his deep understanding of swordsmanship, he still chose to take a defensive stance right at the start of the battle... Does this mean that Zhang Xuan really wields the strength to stand against Feng Ziyi?

Amidst his shock, Zhang Yu also seemed to have dawned upon something as he turned his gaze to the young man standing opposite to Feng Ziyi with a look of intrigue.

If even someone as powerful as Feng Ziyi opted to take a defensive stance right at the start of the battle... wouldn't that mean that Zhang Xuan was even more powerful than him?

But no matter how powerful Zhang Xuan could be, he's only a mere Leaving Aperture realm cultivator. There's bound to be a limit to how powerful he is. Zhang Yu shook his head as he turned his gaze back to the dueling ring, not wanting to miss anything of the duel.

He saw Feng Ziyi tapping his left hand forward, and 'weng!'. Along with a surge of zhenqi, another layer of light barrier was formed in front of him.

"That's the Big Dipper Origin Aegis!" Zhang Yu's lips twitched in disbelief.

If Feng Ziyi execution of the Descending Cotton Sword Art had already left him deeply bewildered, the activation of this light barrier had left him disconcerted.

The Big Dipper Origin Aegis was a secret art which a 9-star master teacher from the Master Teacher Pavilion headquarters came up with while observing the Seven Stars of the Big Dipper. This technique was known for its impenetrable defense to those of the same cultivation realm.

But to execute this technique on top of the defensive Descending Cotton Sword Art... just what in the world was Feng Ziyi trying to guard against?


However, that wasn't the end of his shock yet. Feng Ziyi flicked his finger and crushed a jade token which materialized from his storage ring.


A layer of light purple shimmer swiftly covered him.

"That's a protective amulet forged by a Phantasmal Space realm expert! Even though it's not as powerful as the Grand Cosmos Protective Amulet, it's still more than enough to guard against the attack of any Saint 7-dan expert…" Zhang Yu's lips twitched once more.

Aren't the two of you going to fight with one another?

Why is Feng Ziyi throwing out so many defensive measures then, even activating an invaluable protective amulet for it? Just what in the world is Zhang Xuan capable of that is able to instill such deep fear in him?

Kacha! Kacha!

While Zhang Yu still in a state of absolute bafflement, Feng Ziyi's body began bulging once more, and in the blink of an eye, he made the transformation into a muscular, brawny man.

"Wait a moment... isn't that the Master Teacher Pavilion headquarters' Golden Toad Metamorphosis? It's said to be created by a master teacher while observing the cultivation method of the Golden Toad. This technique will cloak one in a thick layer of scales, granting one unparalleled defense and strength!" Zhang Yu tore his hair in frenzy.

"Just what the hell is he guarding against?!"

The first thing every cultivator would learn was how to defend. Only when one was capable of protecting himself would he be able to slay his opponent. Understanding this logic, Zhang Yu often spent his time studying the various defensive techniques out there in the world, so he was extremely knowledgeable about the subject.

But... to activate so many formidable defensive means at once, had Feng Ziyi gone insane or was Zhang Xuan really worthy of him setting up so many defensive measures for?

"Are you ready?" Paying no heed to the completely flabbergasted crowd below, Zhang Xuan asked with a smile.

"I'm ready. You can start now." Feng Ziyi took in a deep breath before nodding.

While he thought that it was very likely that Zhang Xuan was bragging, just to be safe, he still chose to utilize every single defensive mean at his disposal.

"Very well. Brace yourself!" Saying these words, Zhang Xuan tapped his finger ahead.

The zhenqi in his body was immediately infused into the swords in the sky, and in the blink of an eye, the swords had already whizzed forward, forming a massive sea of sword qi, drowning Feng Ziyi within it.

"This…" Zhang Yu's face turned aghast at the sight, and he subconsciously retreated eight steps as cold sweat rained down his head.

He had just made a quick calculation and found that even if he were to devote his full strength into defense, he would still stand no chance at withstanding that attack!

Wasn't Zhang Xuan just a Leaving Aperture realm cultivator?

How could he possess such astounding offensive prowess?

Zhang Yu felt his throat turning hoarse from sheer fear. In his peripheral vision, he caught sight of Fei shi staring into the dueling ring with his mouth agape, and as if someone was gripping onto his throat, his body trembled uncontrollably.

Astonished by Fei shi's reaction, Zhang Yu turned his gaze over and asked, "Fei shi, you aren't able to withstand that sword art either?"

Fei shi slowly closed his eyes before shaking his head. Suppressing the horror he felt within, he replied with a bitter smile, "I'm afraid so. If he were to execute it against me in a real battle, there's a fair chance that I might lose my life!"

"It's that powerful?" Zhang Yu's eyes nearly bulged out of their sockets.

It was fortunate that he didn't challenge Zhang Xuan earlier on, or else he could have very well landed himself in a far worse state than Zhang Zhuo was in.

"No wonder why he's able to make Zhang Chun and Zhang Feng submit to him... I didn't think that I would fail to see through him as well. Without a doubt, he's the most terrifying individual in your batch!" Fei shi exclaimed.

"What? Zhang Chun and Zhang Feng submitted to him?" Zhang Yu felt as if a lightning bolt had just fallen upon him.

He had been too busy cultivating over the past few days that he wasn't aware of the most recent happenings in the Sanctum of Sages.

"Indeed. Zhang Chun came to look for me yesterday to obtain Zhang Xuan's profile, saying that he has been beaten up by the latter and wanted to exact vengeance... And from the looks of it, it seems like he hasn't fully recovered from his injuries yet!" Fei shi said with a nod.

Zhang Xuan was a freshman, and Fei shi was the person-in-charge of this new batch of students. Naturally, if Zhang Chun wanted to uncover anything concerning Zhang Xuan, the best way was to go through him. It was due to this that he found out about the matter of Zhang Xuan beating up Zhang Chun.

Even though Zhang Chun refused to elaborate on the matter, the tragic state he was in was more than sufficient for Fei shi to fathom a good guess about what had happened.

"As for Zhang Feng... I just heard news that Zhang shi had just challenged the Spirit Awakener Hall and became its Inceptive Sage. The first thing he did after becoming the Inceptive Sage was to enchant Zhang Feng's body and commanded it to hit itself hard…"

Fei shi flicked his wrist and threw a Communication Jade Token over.

Considering the huge ruckus that his student had caused, naturally, as the person-in-charge, he had already received the relevant news.

"He became the Inceptive Sage of the Spirit Awakener Hall... and he enchanted the physical body of a living human?" Zhang Yu's lips twitched, and he nearly collapsed to the ground.

All along, he thought that the only one who was worthy of his attention in this batch of freshmen was Feng Ziyi, but who could have thought that there would be a true monster lurking in their midst...

Others might not be familiar with them, but he knew the Zhang Chun and Zhang Feng brothers very well. They were top geniuses in the Zhang Clan, his idol for a period of time. And yet, they actually were defeated by a freshman...

If these words hadn't come directly from Fei shi, he wouldn't have dared believe such a thing to be true!

"Given his strength and capability, why is he only ranked in the fiftieth place in the entrance examination?" A question suddenly surfaced in Zhang Yu's mind, and he asked.

Since even he was able to clinch the second place, Zhang Xuan should be able to take the first place easily with just the swordsmanship he was executing.

"It's probably because he has a humble personality and wishes to maintain a low profile... Otherwise, isn't it too much of a coincidence for him to be exactly in the fiftieth place, no more no less…" Recalling what had happened back then during the entrance examination, Fei shi said.

It was only in the last three minutes that Zhang Xuan shot up to the fiftieth place, not showing any hints of his astounding talent prior to that. Very clearly, he had been holding himself back throughout the examination.

"You're right…" Having heard of that incident as well, Zhang Yu nodded in realization as admiration seeped into his eyes.

He couldn't help but exclaim, "He really is too low profile!"



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