"A Half-Ancient Sage artifact?"

"Indeed. Between Great Sage and Ancient Sage, there's still a Half-Ancient Sage tier. Cultivators wielding artifacts of such a tier would be able to slay even Sempiternal realm cultivators with ease. It's still nowhere close to competing with a true Ancient Sage artifact like me though. As long as master reaches Ancient Sage, my seal will be released, and I'll gain fighting prowess on par with Ancient Sage cultivators!" the Dragonbone Divine Spear explained.

Hearing those words, Zhang Xuan's face turned grim.

If the Otherworldly Demon were to really use a weapon of such prowess to assault the Xingmeng Sword Saints, they might very well fall victim to it.

"Damn these scoundrels!" Zhang Xuan cursed beneath his breath.

He thought that the Otherworldly Demons were afraid to make a move, but who could have thought that they were actually preparing their trump card!

"I can't let them succeed!"

Having lived as an orphan in his previous life, while he found it difficult to express his feelings, he did treasure the familial ties he had with the Xingmeng Sword Saints. Yet, the Otherworldly Demons actually wanted to assassinate them… Unforgivable!

There was no way he could allow them to succeed! 

However… with his current strength, unless he were to use the Ancient Sage corpse, it would be impossible for him to defeat the Commander standing before him!

But if he were to use the Ancient Sage corpse right now, he would deplete his soul energy swiftly. Given that he was currently in the midst of the enemy's encampment, that was an extremely risky move to do.

Hu!

Just as Zhang Xuan was still pondering over how he should deal with the Commander, he saw the latter abruptly taking a breath. A burst of power flurried from the Commander. Gritting his teeth, the Commander stepped forward and grabbed the demonic saber.

Tzzzzzz!

A crimson glow flickered from the skeletal handle of the demonic saber. With an abrupt jolt, the demonic saber knocked the Commander away and assaulted him with a gush of malevolent aura.

The Commander's face darkened upon seeing this sight, and he hurriedly retreated two steps. It took a while before he managed to suppress the raging energies in his body.

He paused for a moment before speaking slowly, "I don't intend to tame you. I just need you to help me to slay two people!"

It went without saying that the Half-Ancient Sage artifact had a weapon spirit, so it was possible to negotiate with it.

Weng weng weng!

However, it didn't seem like the skull on the demonic saber was willing to listen to his words at all. It fell silent after jolting the Commander away, completely disregarding his words. It was as if it was telling the Commander that he would have to show ample strength to prove himself worthy of speaking to it first!

"Since you aren't willing to cooperate, don't blame me for taking extreme measures then…" Seeing how arrogant the demonic saber was, the Commander's complexion didn't look too good either. 


Narrowing his eyes, light began gathering on the surface of his palm before eventually forming a transparent, thin film. Following which, he stepped forward and grabbed the demonic saber once more.

Tzzzzzz!

The demonic saber had no intentions to give in either. The two formidable forces collided with one another, causing dimension rifts to surface in the surroundings.

Due to the seer artifacts and the formation cast over the area, despite the powerful shockwaves diffusing into the surroundings as a result of their clashes, not the slightest hint of energy leaked out of the area. 

That so-called Commander fellow hasn't tamed the demonic saber yet! Zhang Xuan widened his eyes in realization.

It seemed like the mirrors served two purposes. Firstly, it was to dull the Xingmeng Sword Saints instincts so as to enhance the chances of conducting a successful assassination. Secondly, it was to conceal the existence of this Half-Ancient Sage saber.

That would also explain why they had to move the boxes manually. If the saber had already been tamed, they might have been able to keep it into a storage ring. Unfortunately, that wasn't the case, so they had no choice but to go through the additional trouble.

Considering how powerful the Commander already was, if he were to successfully tame the demonic saber, even if his assassination were to fail in the end, his prowess was still beyond what the Xingmeng Sword Saints could deal with.

This is perfect! I'll just have to stop him from taming the demonic saber… Zhang Xuan was still wondering how he should stop the Commander, but since the latter hadn't tamed the demonic saber yet, this matter would be much easier to resolve.

While the Commander was devoting all of his strength into dealing with the saber, Zhang Xuan began to move his muscles and bones once more. 

Geji! Geji!

In the blink of an eye, he had already assumed another identity.

… 

In the midst of the formation of mirrors, the Commander eyed the demonic saber before him warily.

He knew how powerful the demonic saber was, so he didn't dare to hold back at all. He drove his zhenqi to the limits and sent a concentrated barrage of powerful attacks one after another against the demonic saber. 

He could feel the winds of the battle gradually turning in his favor. This was the decisive moment, he couldn't allow his attention to wander at all. If he were to push his way through, he was confident he would be able to win the acknowledgement of the demonic saber.

But at this crucial moment, he heard flurried footsteps outside.

Following which, a figure came into sight. He was the person whom he had just dismissed a moment ago, General Auer. The latter walked right up to him, clasped his fist, and bowed, "Commander, I have already relayed your orders to the men. No one will interrupt you anymore. You can cultivate with a peace of mind!"

"..." The Commander's body twitched upon hearing those words.

Most Great Sage cultivators were strong enough to multitask, but dealing with the demonic saber left no room for his concentration to wander. Not only did he have to fend off its furious assault, more importantly, he had to keep the demonic saber's malevolent aura from corroding his mind too. At a time like this, silence was of utmost importance.

This was also the reason why the Commander had ordered General Auer to keep anyone from interrupting him… Yet, this fool actually barged in just to report to him that he had fulfilled the order… 

Do you have any common sense?!

Isn't it obvious that my order includes you as well? How am I supposed to cultivate with a peace of mind with you around?

"You're dismissed!" Suppressing the urge to give General Auer a tight slap, the Commander bellowed with a wintry voice.

Huhu!

The sudden fluctuation in his emotions opened a gap for the malevolent aura of the demonic saber to seep into his mind, causing his consciousness to blur a little. As a result of that, his movements grew a little sluggish. 

"Yes, Commander!" General Auer replied resoundingly before taking a step back, seemingly about to leave the room. However, just as he was about to step out of the door, he abruptly halted his footsteps, as if having recalled something. He turned around and asked, "Commander, it's going to be lunchtime very soon. Do you want to have beef brisket noodles or omelette du fromage? I'll get the kitchen to prepare one portion specially for you!"

"Beef brisket noodles? Omelette du fromage?" the Commander was startled by those words.

Do we have such food over here?

As long as there was ample spiritual energy, cultivators at their level could easily fast for over ten years… Given that they were in the midst of the war, who would be in a mood to eat beef brisket noodles or omelette du fromage, whatever that was!

"Scram!"

He was in a crucial period of the taming process, and he needed absolute silence at this moment. Yet, that fellow just had to prattle on and on by the side. If the Commander had hypertension, his veins would have already popped from sheer anger!

That momentary distraction from General Auer allowed the demonic saber, which had just been forced into a disadvantageous position, to make a comeback. It sent a gush of malevolent aura toward the Commander, further blurring his consciousness. The splitting headache caused by the malevolent aura caused cold sweat to trickle down the Commander's head.

"Ah? You don't seem to be in too good of a mood… Do you want some iced water to cool yourself down?" General Auer asked with a concerned tone. "Look how much you are sweating! Are you feeling unwell?"

"..." the Commander.

Screw you screw you screw you! Why have I never noticed that this idiot has such an irritating mouth before?

You are a general, not a chef or an attendant! Furthermore, isn't it plain to see that I'm busy at the moment? Just why are you so determined to trouble me at this moment?

"I told you to scram! Scram!!!" Unable to take it any longer, the Commander howled with a mixture of fury and desperation in his voice.

However, it didn't seem like his intimidation was working very well as the other party's voice soon sounded once more, "Wow, there's no need to get so touchy. You could have told me that you weren't thirsty… What about soup then? I heard that the kitchen has just boiled an amazing pork bone soup. Shall I serve a bowl to you too?"

PUUUU!

Something within the Commander snapped at the moment. In the next, however, the malevolent aura successfully breached the mental defenses of the Commander, causing his face to pale and fresh blood to spew from his mouth.

Freak you! Are you done or not?

Are you really blind? Can't you see that I'm in the midst of taming the demonic saber?

Get some common sense, you jackass!

Suppressing the boiling rage within him, the Commander took deep breaths, and with forced composure, he spat through gritted teeth, "I don't want food, I don't want water, and I don't want soup too. Now, get out of this room and stop bothering me!"

"Commander, you don't have to worry! I have relayed strict orders to the men, so you can be certain that no one would dare to bother you! Only fools seeking death would dare to oppose your orders. Even if you don't say a word, I would slay that dimwit with my own hands!" General Auer waved his hand grandly and spoke with an imposing demeanor.

The Commander felt a stabbing pain in his chest.

Is there a screw loose in your mind? What makes you think that I am referring to others? The one who is bothering me is you!

Just as the Commander was about to hurl expletives at that dense subordinate of his, General Auer turned his earnest gaze to him once more and asked, "Commander, isn't it a little too boring to be idling around here without doing anything? Shall we sing together? If you are too shy, I don't mind singing for you either!"

"Pu!" the Commander spurted another mouthful of blood.

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