1986 Devastating the Elder Council (1)

There were no records of what came after High Immortals in the books that Zhang Xuan had accessed so far, and Elder Lu Yun had no idea what was there either. Nevertheless, his gut feeling was that the old man before him, Sect Leader Han Jianqiu, had already reached that unknown level.

He could tell that Han Jianqiu did not bear him any ill will, but if the latter really wanted to make a move against him, he would be completely helpless to retaliate.

"Zhang Xuan, is it convenient for you to display your swordsmanship to us?" Han Jianqiu asked with a chuckle.

"May I know how you wish for me to display my swordsmanship?" Zhang Xuan asked.

"Your cultivation is only at Lesser Pseudo Immortal realm, so it would be impossible for you to enter the elders' Ethereal Hall. Since that's the case, let's enter the core disciples' Ethereal Hall and have a duel there. I think that there's no better way to demonstrate one's swordsmanship than a real battle!" Han Jianqiu replied.

The elders also had an exclusive Ethereal Hall, but there was a minimum cultivation to enter its premises. Clearly, the young man had not reached the minimum requirement, so they could only make do with the core disciples' Ethereal Hall instead.

Seeing that the other party did not notice that he had intentionally suppressed his cultivation, Zhang Xuan replied with a smile, "Entering the core disciples' Ethereal Hall? That's too troublesome. Why don't you just suppress your cultivation and have a fight with me here?"

"Here? Are you certain?" Before Han Jianqiu could say anything, Elder He had already interjected with a frown. "Everyone's cultivation, zhenqi capacity, and physical prowess are at the same level as one another in the Ethereal Hall, so it's indubitably the fairest battlefield for all of us. On the other hand, here, even if we suppress our cultivation, there will still be some differences in the resilience of our bodies, souls, and purity of zhenqi. Those are not factors that we can control."

Entering the Ethereal Hall only required a sliver of one's consciousness, and one would be instantaneously paired with a body whose attributes were identical to everyone else. In a sense, it was similar to one's consciousness being brought over to a puppet's body. It was only under such circumstances that the differences in the prowess of one's swordsmanship would show clearly.

But in reality, even if they suppressed their cultivation, their physical bodies and souls as High Immortals would still grant them a decisive advantage in the battle. There was no way a Lesser Pseudo Immortal would stand a chance against them!

"It's fine," Zhang Xuan replied.

While he could uncover the other party's identity from their sword arts in the Ethereal Hall through the Library of Heaven's Path, the information that he received was limited. If he used the Library of Heaven's Path in reality, he could even track down the other party's ancestors. If anything happened, this information could become the key for him to preserve his life.


"Humph! Since you have already made up your mind, we also want to see just how powerful the Gods' Sword Intent is!" an elder said as he stood up.

The Gods' Sword Intent was the swordsmanship comprehended by the founder, and just the fact that the founder was able to steal half a character from the Hall of Gods spoke a lot about its prowess. Unfortunately, over the past several thousand years, no one had been able to reach the same level as the founder.

In fact, even they, despite being the strongest sword practitioners in the sect, were unable to tell just how powerful it was!

Since the person before them wanted to challenge them outside the Ethereal Hall, that would be for the best! They were more than willing to test the prowess of the Gods' Sword Intent for themselves.

In any case, given the resilience of their physical bodies and souls, even if they suppressed their cultivation, the other party would not be able to hurt them anymore!

"I am Chou Huo, the First Elder of the Core Disciple Sector. My cultivation is at the Heavenly High Immortal realm, and I wish to test your swordsmanship!"

The elder named Chou Huo stepped forward and swiftly suppressed his cultivation to Zhang Xuan's level. With a simple flick of his blade, a crisp metallic reverberation echoed through the air.

It was customary for each elder to be bestowed with a sword from the Elder Council. The swords that elders received were identical, and they were intended for dueling purposes. The reason behind that was to ensure that the prowess of the weapon did not interfere in the results of the duel.

Zhang Xuan looked at Chou Huo calmly, not drawing his blade at all. Instead, he chuckled lightly and said, "You won't be enough. The rest of you should come down as well!"

"Not enough?"

The eyebrows of the other elders shot up in astonishment. Among them, Elder Bai Ye even clasped his forehead.

To think that this fellow actually called himself I Am Low Profile...

Just tell me, how the heck is this low profile at all?

Those who are present aren't just the top sword practitioners of the Ascendant Cloud Sword Pavilion; they are renowned even across the entire Forsaken Continent! Even if your swordsmanship is formidable, any single person here would be enough to be an opponent for you...

Yet, you actually want to fight everyone, including the Sect Leader Han?

Is there any limit to your arrogance?

"It seems like you all dare not face me?" Zhang Xuan's eyebrows shot up, and a provocative smile crept onto his lips.

Seeing how Zhang Xuan was snubbing him, Chou Huo's complexion did not look too good. "I admit that the Gods' Sword Intent is indeed formidable, but it's not for no reason that I was able to become the First Elder of the Core Disciple Sector. Not to mention, only my cultivation has been suppressed here. If you wish to fight everyone else, you would do well to defeat me first!"

In the first place, it was already beneath a Heavenly High Immortal like him to challenge a Lesser Pseudo Immortal, but the other party thought that he would not be able to put up a fight.

This was as good as slapping him in his face!

Furthermore, it was the kind that utilized a skillful combination of backhand and forehand to create a rhythmic 'Pah! Pah! Pah!' kind of face slap!

"Is that how it works here? I see!" Seeing that no one else intended to join the battle, possibly due to their confidence in Chou Huo's strength, Zhang Xuan smiled lightly as he raised a single finger up.

"What does that mean? Do you intend to defeat me in a single move?" Chou Huo was stunned for a moment before he roared furiously in laughter. "Aren't you being a little too arrogant?"

Hearing those words, Zhang Xuan shook his head and clarified himself. "You misunderstand. What I'm saying is that without using a sword or moving an inch, I can defeat you with a single finger in a single breath."

You..." Chou Huo nearly exploded on the spot.

As the First Elder of the Core Disciple Sector, he had tempered his state of mind to a level where he could remain unfazed to most matters... but he had never met someone as infuriating as the other party!

It was not just the other party's words that were leaving him so maddened. Even the other party's gaze and gestures were incredibly condescending, almost as if he was looking at an ant.

He was a Heavenly High Immortal, one of the strongest experts on the Forsaken Continent!

Yet, why did it feel as if he was a nobody attempting to challenge someone far beyond his league?

"Very well, allow me to assess your prowess. I'm looking forward to seeing how you defeat me with a single finger in a single breath!" Chou Huo harrumphed as he glared at Zhang Xuan.

...

"Isn't that young man a little arrogant?"

"Arrogant? More like his head is up in the clouds!"

Han Jianqiu and Elder He looked at one another as they traded bitter smiles.

For a Lesser Pseudo Immortal lad to remain unfazed in the presence of so many Heavenly High Immortals and even utter such haughty words... Did he have a screw loose in his head, or did he have the skills to back his words?

"The Gods' Sword Intent is known to be powerful enough to deal with even the deities... Let's hope that this young man's strength is enough to awe us!"

"I guess that's all we can do now!"

Shaking their heads, the two of them turned their gazes back to Chou Huo and Zhang Xuan.

Seeing how no one else was coming even after his provocation, Zhang Xuan was a little disappointed, "■at a pity…

He knew that his words were a little arrogant, but he was doing it on purpose.

He wanted everyone to make a move so that he could gather the flaws of everyone on the Elder Council. This would allow him to be prepared for whatever came his way in the future. Otherwise, the duels would probably end after he defeated around three enemies and proved his strength.

He did not think that he had the strength to oppose a Heavenly High Immortal in his current state, so he could only find other means to escape from them in case any of them intended him harm.

Forget it... I should defeat this one before challenging the rest of them again. I believe they should all come down after this...

Seeing how snugly seated the elders were, Zhang Xuan knew that it was impossible for him to convince them to come down for the time being.

Thus, he turned his gaze to Chou Huo and said, "Let's not waste any time and get it over with!"

Hu!

Right after he said those words, Chou Huo moved.

Even though Chou Huo had suppressed his cultivation to the Lesser Pseudo Immortal realm, his movements were still swift like a hurricane. The sword in his hand seemed to pierce right through the limitations of space, arriving before Zhang Xuan's face in an instant.

In terms of prowess, there was no doubt that he was many times stronger than the number one core disciple, He Jingxuan.

But just as Chou Huo's sword was about to reach Zhang Xuan's throat, Zhang Xuan raised his finger and flicked it lightly.

His movements were not too fast, but they felt solemn and incredibly heavy. In an instant, Chou Huo felt as if a comet was crushing down on him, leaving him feeling as if he was facing a force that he could never hope to oppose.

"How is this possible?" Chou Huo widened his eyes in disbelief.

He was a Heavenly High Immortal expert. Even if he suppressed his cultivation, his mental resilience would still be at a much higher level. It should have been impossible for the other party to make a move that would have left him feeling so helpless... but that single finger actually made him feel as if he was facing something far beyond him.

How did the other party manage to do that?

Kacha! Kacha!

With a furious roar, Chou Huo tried to shake away that feeling in his mind and push through with sheer courage. However, as the finger came into contact with his sword, the zhenqi infused into the sword immediately dissipated. The sword swiftly bent into an awkward angle, causing cracks to appear all over it before it shattered into innumerable fragments.

As for Chou Huo himself, he tried to move but the overwhelming feeling kept him bound to the spot. He could only watch helplessly as the other party's finger slowly approached his glabella.

On the seats above, Han Jianqiu was slightly stunned by the sight for a moment before the edge of his lips curved up a little. This fellow... Interesting!"

"Sect Leader Han, this is..." Elder He glanced at Han Jianqiu in confusion.

Ignoring the fact that Chou Huo had the body and soul of a High Immortal, even if one assumed that they were of the same cultivation realm, how could Zhang Xuan possibly destroy Chou Huo's sword with a single finger and seal his strength too? What were the principles behind this move?

"If I'm not mistaken, his expertise lies not only in swordsmanship but in formations as well," Han Jianqiu explained. "Formations?" Elder He was even more confused.

"Un. That move made use of not just his Sword Intent but the formation around the entire Elder Council. He used the formation to refine his Sword Intent to a tremendous level, far beyond what Chou Huo could stand against," Han Jianqiu explained. "The reason he used his words to goad the other party earlier was, in truth, to stall for time. He was in his process of refining his Sword Intent then..."

At this point, Han Jianqiu remarked, "It's no wonder he was able to comprehend the Gods' Sword Intent. His ability to tap into whatever resources are around him is truly formidable!"

"This..." Elder He's cheeks twitched a little.

How long had it been since the other party entered the Elder Council? All in all, not more than ten minutes.

But within this period, not only did he see through the formation cast around the Elder Council, he was even able to make use of it to nourish his Sword Intent.

This was too remarkable!

Previously, he had thought that it was impossible for someone to be so much more powerful than them in the same cultivation realm, but it seemed like he might have been underestimating the other party!

Peng!

While they were shocked beyond words, the battle between the two people fighting below had already come to an end. As Zhang Xuan's finger fell on Chou Huo's forehead, the latter was sent flying into the distance.

Chou Huo hurriedly released the seal on his cultivation while he was flying back, or else he would have sustained severe internal injuries.

"How is it?" Zhang Xuan placed his hands behind his back as he looked at Chou Huo impassively.

All in all, from the moment he made his move to the moment that Chou Huo was sent flying, he had spent exactly one breath.

"I... have lost!" Chou Huo lowered his head and surrendered.

Even though he felt that the other party did not triumph over him on the grounds of just swordsmanship alone, he felt that it was an embarrassment to even point that out. After all, it was a great humiliation for a High Immortal like him to be defeated by a Pseudo Immortal within a single breath.

"Hahaha!" Zhang Xuan chuckled softly as he suddenly turned his gaze to the other members of the Elder Council. His voice echoed loudly in the ears of every single elder present.

"I wonder if I could have the honor of facing the rest of you. Won't you allow me to give each of you a good pummeling with my sword?"

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