"Zhi Chen was defeated?"

"Against a cultivator of the same cultivation realm, he was defeated in a single blow?"

"Furthermore, the other party didn't use any battle technique at all. It was just sheer physical and zhenqi might."

Upon seeing their own companion being defeated in a single blow, the combat masters, who had underestimated the young man before them a moment ago, couldn't help but clench their fists tightly with grim expressions on their faces.

Even though the other party had reached an incredible height in his cultivation despite his young age, they had thought that he might just have been the offspring of a wealthy clan who had raised his cultivation through consuming pills. Typically speaking, the fighting prowess of such individuals tended to be subpar.

As such, they hadn't thought of the other party as much of a threat. However, watching as their companion—who was unrivaled in his power class—being defeated with a single jab of a spear and now lying severely wounded on the ground, they couldn't help but freeze in shock.

Weren't they, combat masters, unrivaled existences regardless of where they went?

It was one thing for them to be outmatched by the candidates specially chosen by the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy, but for even a random young man they met on the street to defeat them easily as well…

More importantly, unlike the candidates whom they had faced in the day, the other party hadn't utilized any exceptional battle technique or extraordinary combat sense to exploit their flaws. Instead, he had defeated their companion with just sheer zhenqi and physical strength!

In other words, they, who had gone through hellish training in order to enhance their strength, zhenqi, and reflexes, were being outmatched by the other party!

"Damn it!"

The severely wounded Zhi Chen pushed himself against the ground and got to his feet. He glared at the young man before him hostilely with gritted teeth.

It was one thing for him, as a combat master, to be humiliated during the selection exercise in the day, but to be humiliated by a young fellow who hadn't even reached his twenties yet in the evening as well… This was intolerable, unbearable, and insufferable!

Roaring furiously, Zhi Chen ignored the protests of his companions and dashed forward with his sword. Driving his zhenqi to its limit, he exerted a rampaging storm of sharp sword qi.

Hong long long!

In an instant, the air was cut into shreds.

Even though Zhi Chen was only at Ethereal Treading realm, he was capable of drawing forth a might that nearly no Chrysalis realm cultivator could withstand.

"Humph!" Seeing his enemy fly into a rage, Zheng Yang simply smiled wryly.

With this posture upright like a spear, Zheng Yang stood firmly, and with a cold harrumph, his spear shot forth once again.

The brilliant glint of the tip of the spear streaked forward furiously as if a charging flood dragon. In just the blink of an eye, it had already appeared right before the opponent, giving him no time to react at all.

"This… Impossible!"

Zhi Chen's body stiffened from fright upon seeing the spear materialize right before his eyes. By that point, it was already too late for him to dodge. A sharp pain pervaded his chest as he was struck by the tip of the spear. The next moment, he was sent flying through the air.


Fresh blood spurted wildly from his mouth as his figure moved in a parabola through the sky.

The previous move had already left him severely wounded, and this strike had further aggravated his injuries, rendering him incapable of fighting.

"You aren't a match for me! Isn't there anyone stronger?" Ignoring the wounded Zhi Chen, Zheng Yang turned his gaze to the remaining combat masters.

Seeing how the young man had managed to subdue their companion with a single move, the others dared not underestimate him anymore. With grim looks, they traded glances, and eventually, a young man amid them stepped forward.

"I will be your opponent!"

This young man possessed a cultivation of Chrysalis realm pinnacle, and he had been in charge of assessing the Grade-5 candidates. The weapon he specialized in happened to be the spear as well. With his prowess with the spear, he had struck fear into hearts of the other three Master Teacher Academies' candidates so deep that none dared step onto the dueling platform to face him during the selection.

Stepping forward, the young man harrumphed coldly. "I will suppress my cultivation to battle you…"

"Suppress your cultivation? There is no need for that! Show me what you've got instead!" Zheng Yang waved his hand nonchalantly.

After which, he raised his spear and drove it forward with astounding might.

"Arrogant brat…"

The other party's abrupt move had left him no time to suppress his cultivation at all. The young man's face darkened as he raised his spear to counterattack.

Having devoted many years to the spear, the young man had long achieved the realm of Spear-Man Union. Jabbing his spear forward, innumerable afterimages of the spear swiftly appeared before him, forming a seemingly impenetrable wall that sealed the other party within it.

"Excellent spearmanship! It seems like Chi Xiao has decided to go all out!"

"Even our leader is full of praise for his spearmanship. That fellow is bound to lose…"

"Hah, a mere Chrysalis realm primary stage cultivator actually dared provoke us? He really should learn his place!"

Seeing the young man execute his spear art, the other combat masters simultaneously heaved a sigh of relief.

They knew full well how formidable their companion's prowess was with the spear; even a Half-Saint would have to back down before his might! On the other end, the fellow their companion was facing was only at Chrysalis realm primary stage. As powerful as that fellow was, they couldn't see him taking this attack unharmed.

The combat masters watched intently to see how the other party would be utterly defeated before their companion's spearmanship, but all of a sudden, the Chrysalis realm pinnacle Chi Xiao suddenly let out a stifled gasp before being sent flying into the distance. Just like the previous contender, Zhi Chen, he crashed to the ground and began spurting blood wildly.

"This… How is this possible?"

"Chi Xiao was defeated? And in one move at that?"

Narrowing their eyes, everyone's face warped in shock.

They could still rationalize Zhi Chen's defeat as the other party's advantage as a Chrysalis realm primary stage cultivator albeit suppressing his cultivation. But this time, the other party was weaker than Chi Xiao, but the other party had still managed to defeat him so easily.

How was that possible?

"Chi Xiao…"

The other combat masters hurriedly rushed over to help their companion up. In that moment, they couldn't help but notice the horror and disbelief in their companion's eyes.

"Are you fine?" Worried, they asked anxiously.

Struggling to a sitting position, Chi Xiao urged through jaws clenched in pain, "Call… our leader here! I… am not a match for him."

Taking a glance at Zheng Yang, the other combat masters knew that it would be impossible for them to defeat him, given that even the strongest Chi Xiao wasn't a match for him. Thus, clenching their fists in frustration and anger, they turned around and left.

The residences that School Head Mo and the others had prepared for the parties from the other Master Teacher Academies and the Combat Master Hall were clean and spacious. Special attention had to been given to their accommodations so as to ensure that they would have a comfortable stay in Hongyuan.

Seated in the vast main hall at this very moment was Zhuo Qingfeng, and Wo Tianqiong, Shen Pingchao, and Wu Ran were sat at the opposite end to him.

After the banquet came to an end, there was nothing else for the three principals to do. As such, they decided to pay Zhuo Qingfeng a visit, hoping to trade their insights on cultivation, and it was fortunate that they did so. The conversation they had with the other party enlightened them greatly.

As expected of a Hundred Men Commander of the Combat Master Hall. His understanding of cultivation and mastery of battle techniques were far above even principals like them.

Just from the knowledge he shared in itself, they could already imagine the fearsome strength he wielded.

There was no doubt that he was capable of challenging opponents possessing a cultivation significantly greater than his, and it would be unwise to gauge him just by his cultivation realm alone.

"The crux of cultivation lies in one's heart. As long as one's heart remains earnest, one will only continue to grow strong." Zhuo Qingfeng chuckled. "The main difference between us, combat masters, and you, master teachers, is that our hearts are solely devoted to furthering our fighting capability. On the other hand, you have to divide your attention between learning supporting occupations and imparting your knowledge to the others as well. So, it's only natural that we have an advantage in terms of fighting prowess."

"Indeed." Wo Tianqiong and the others nodded in agreement.

The main reason the fighting prowess of a combat master was greater than most master teachers was because they had devoted all of their effort to enhancing their fighting prowess. On the other hand, due to the primary responsibility that a master teacher shouldered, they had to divert some of their attention into studying supporting occupations and such so as to further their teaching capability.

Naturally, with their attention divided between several matters simultaneously, it was impossible for a normal master teacher to match up to the specialized combat master in terms of fighting prowess.

As the principals of the Four Great Master Teacher Academies, they possessed exceptional standing and had access to strong cultivation techniques as well. In terms of fighting prowess, they were superior to most master teachers. However, compared to Zhuo Qingfeng, they were still plenty lacking.

As the saying goes, 'each field has its own experts'. Not even master teachers could possibly be skilled at everything.

At this moment, Wo Tianqiong suddenly thought of something and asked, "Combat Master Zhuo, do you think that Principal Zhang's lecture tonight will be able to induce significant improvement among his students?"

Previously, Principal Zhang had said that he intended to conduct a lecture in order to raise his students' zhenqi purity and physical strength. In Wo Tianqiong's view, it was something nigh impossible to achieve. Nevertheless, the peculiarity that had happened with Hongyuan earlier in the day left a bizarre feeling within him, prompting him to ask Zhuo Qingfeng about this matter.

"Under normal circumstances, I would say that such a thing is completely impossible. Just that… there is just something a little uncanny about Principal Zhang," Zhuo Qingfeng said with a frown.

Had it been anyone else, he would have been certain that the other party's attempt to raise his students' zhenqi purity and physical strength significantly over the course of a single night would have been nothing but daydreaming.

However, given that it was Principal Zhang they were talking about, he dared not jump to a conclusion so hastily.

The other party was a person who could make his students' combat prowess surpass even that of combat masters within just an hour's lecture; it would have been a mistake to gauge the other party by normal standards.

"Un… I feel the same way as well," Wo Tianqiong said as he shook his head.

As compared to Zhuo shi, the feeling was even more vivid for him because he had personally seen the difference in the strength of Hongyuan's candidates before and after the lecture. It was as if that fellow was someone whom common sense no longer applied to.

"Actually, there is no need for us to think too much about this. We will know the answer tomorrow morning," Zhuo Qingfeng replied with a light smile. Halfway through his words, however, a young man suddenly rushed into the room.

It was the Cosmos Bridge realm pinnacle combat master, Ye Jun.

As soon as he entered the room, Ye Jun began shouting. "Leader, bad news!"

"What's wrong?" Zhuo Qingfeng frowned.

"Our men were walking around the academy just now when we suddenly encountered a young man who seems to be either sixteen or seventeen. The other party stopped us and challenged us to a duel… However, who could have known that none of us would be a match for him, resulting in the complete defeat of the team!" Ye Jun swiftly went through the events that had just happened.

"A young man, only sixteen or seventeen, challenged you to a duel, and none of you are a match for him?" Zhuo Qingfeng had a look of incredulity on his face, as if he had heard a ludicrous joke.

Who were they?

Combat masters!

An existence that was invincible in their power class. Yet, they had actually suffered a complete defeat at the hands of a sixteen or seventeen-year-old young man?

Was this for real?

"That's right. The other party is only at Chrysalis realm primary stage… Chi Xiao faced the other party with his full strength, but even he was sent flying with a single jab and suffered severe wounds," Ye Jun said.

"A Chrysalis realm primary stage cultivator actually defeated the Chrysalis realm pinnacle Chi Xiao? How can this be possible?" Zhuo Qingfeng widened his eyes in shock.

If a combat master were to lose to an opponent of the same cultivation realm, it could only mean that the combat master was still insufficiently skilled. However, to lose to an opponent of a lower cultivation realm… This was something that would really be worth looking into!

"Leader, it is true!" Ye Jun replied affirmatively.

"Who is that cultivator? Is he a master teacher from Hongyuan?" Zhuo Qingfeng questioned.

"I am not too sure either. We were just walking along the streets when he suddenly stopped us, saying that he had heard of the strength that combat masters wield and wished to challenge us. He first suppressed his cultivation to fight with Zhi Chen, but Zhi Chen was defeated in an instant. After which, Chi Xiao stepped forward to accept his challenge, but he wasn't a match either!" Ye Jun explained.

"To be able to move freely around the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy, the other party must be from Hongyuan. Let's go over and take a look…"

Hearing about how two of his subordinates had been defeated so easily, Zhuo Qingfeng's face darkened as he got to his feet.

Wo Tianqiong, Shen Pingchao, and Wu Ran also traded glances among themselves before getting to their feet and following behind him.

Before they had even made their way to the entrance of the courtyard, they heard several yells of agony. Rushing toward the voices, they soon saw the majestic combat masters who had easily subdued the candidates from the three Master Teacher Academies earlier in the day lying on the ground, spurting blood as if a fountain. A sixteen or seventeen-year-old young man was standing proudly in front of them with a spear in his hand, reminiscent of an indomitable God of War.

"Even though I suppressed my cultivation, none of you were able to take an attack from me. Is this the strength of the legendary combat masters?"

Glancing at Zhuo Qingfeng, a wry smile emerged on the young man's face. "Seems like your reputation precedes you!"



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