Chapter 989: Poison Match
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: StarveCleric

His current cultivation was only at Nascent Saint pinnacle. Even though he could subdue even Saint 2-dan cultivators easily due to the various means he possessed, he was still too weak from matching up to a Primordial Spirit realm opponent.

If he were to intervene without a feasible plan, there was a very good chance he could be killed.

At the moment, the best weapon he had against a Primordial Spirit realm opponent was his Heaven's Path zhenqi. If he could sneak his Heaven's Path zhenqi into the other party's body and poison him, there was a good chance that he could emerge victorious in the confrontation.

However, considering the alert state the Violetleaf King was in at the moment, it didn't seem like there was any good way to do so.

"However, my goal is to save Elder Xu, not to kill the Violetleaf King. This will be significantly easier. As long as I can find a way to win the Violetleaf King's trust, I should be able to find an opportunity to approach Elder Xu and take him to safety..." Zhang Xuan thought.

The true difficulty in this mission lay in winning Elder Xu's trust...

In truth, he could have easily stalled the Violetleaf King by sending his Otherworldly Demon puppets at the latter, thus earning him time to save Elder Xu. However, that would effectively dash his hopes of having Elder Xu bring him to the Poison Hall!

Besides, the reason why he was able to defeat the three Otherworldly Demon Kings was because he had managed to catch them off guard. On the other hand, considering the coincidental timing which the city lord had returned, there seemed to be a very good chance that the Violetleaf King had somehow learned of the Waterleaf King's death. If so, the Violetleaf King would surely be on his guard, making it hard for him to deal with the other party.

"Wait a moment. Perhaps, I can try working on him from the Waterleaf King's side…" A thought suddenly flashed across Zhang Xuan's mind.

The Waterleaf King and the Violetleaf King were both members of the Qingtian Ten Great Kings, and it was definitely no coincidence for the both of them to appear at Jingyuan City simultaneously. It was very likely that they were here for the same purpose.

In other words, both of them were tasked with the mission of finding the Poison Hall. This would also explain why the Waterleaf King had headed to the auction hall to obtain the Sepulture Flower before being killed by him.

"Alright, I should just give it a try then!"

Glancing at the situation beneath, Elder Xu was in a perilous situation; he could very well lose his life any moment now. Zhang Xuan knew that there was no time for him to think the matter through, and he had to act swiftly. Thus, he nimbly leaped back down to the ground.

There was a formation around the courtyard which prevented one from entering and leaving. However, with Zhang Xuan's deep understanding of formations, he was capable of treading in and out of the formation without alerting anyone.

Very soon, he managed to sneak out of the formation. He swiftly warped his bones and muscles, transforming his appearance into that of one of the two guards that were by the Waterleaf King's side back then.

After that was done, he clasped his fist and reported loudly, "City lord, bad news! The elder whom you have instructed us to protect has been killed! The culprit is a 7-star master teacher, and he is currently making his way here…"

"The person who killed the Waterleaf King is a 7-star master teacher?"

As those words were spoken, the formation surrounding the courtyard vanished, and a figure appeared before Zhang Xuan's face.

The figure was the Violetleaf King.

He was still firmly holding onto the beetle in his hand, keeping Elder Xu in check. On the other hand, Elder Xu was lying feebly on the ground, severely wounded.

Zhang Xuan was visibly surprised by the sudden appearance of the man before him before hurriedly nodding, "Yes, elder!"

"What happened? Explain everything in detail to me!" the Violetleaf King ordered grimly.

As comrades working on the same mission, he had a jade token which indicated the present condition of the Waterleaf King. Just a moment ago, the jade token shattered, which meant that something must have happened to the Waterleaf King. As such, he hurriedly returned back to the City Lord Manor and summoned the city lord back to have the other party look into the matter.

Upon meeting the guard who had escorted the Waterleaf King to the auction, he couldn't help but question him anxiously.

"Earlier, when the elder was going to enter the auction hall, someone claiming to be his old friend stopped him and offered him a cup of wine. After chatting for a while, the elder proposed for the both of them to head to a tavern to have a drink together, and he ordered us not to follow him. As such, I am not too sure what happened afterwards. However, when I finally saw the elder once more, he was already dead. According to the accounts from eye-witnesses, it was the doing of a 7-star master teacher…"

Zhang Xuan had mixed the truth with falsehood, making it nigh impossible for the other party to ascertain the authenticity of his words in the short-term.

And what Zhang Xuan was banking on was this short-term.

As long as he could convince the other party of his identity, he would be able to slip into the manor and escape with Elder Xu.

"7-star master teacher?" Finding no apparent flaws in the other party's words, the Violetleaf King frowned.

How could any 7-star master teacher appear in a city as remote as Jingyuan City?

And why would the other party make a move against the Waterleaf King too?

He was confident that there was no one who would be able to see through their disguise, not even 7-star master teachers.

However... if the culprit wasn't a 7-star master teacher, considering the Waterleaf King's strength, there was indeed no one in Jingyuan City who would be able to kill him.

"I have no idea too!" Zhang Xuan said. "I only saw the elder's corpse when I arrived, so I brought it over..." After saying those words, Zhang Xuan flicked his wrist, and the withered corpse of the Waterleaf King appeared on the ground.

"This is... Ignition of Primordial Spirit? He attempted to forcefully withdraw his Primordial Spirit?" the Violetleaf King narrowed his eyes in alarm.

As a fellow Otherworldly Demon King, he could tell that the Waterleaf King had died due from using their secret art to withdraw one's Primordial Spirit forcefully. Once it was used, one would die without fail... Just how powerful an enemy did he encounter that he would have to resort to this?

Could he have really met a 7-star master teacher?

If that was the case, they would really be in deep trouble!

It would be difficult for even him to escape from a master teacher of that caliber.

"This won't do. I have to get the location of the Poison Hall out from that fellow right now!" Alarmed, the Violetleaf King dared not to waste any time. He hurriedly turned his gaze back to Elder Xu, but what he saw left a deep frown on his forehead, "What are you doing?"

The guard, who had just reported the matter regarding the Waterleaf King to him earlier, had walked up to Elder Xu at some point in time, seemingly trying to help the latter up.

"Nothing much. I just think that his wounds are a little severe, so I wondered if he needed any help…" Zhang Xuan replied with an awkward smile.

"You are not needed here, back down!" Seeing how a guard dared to overstep his place, the Violetleaf King's face darkened.

"Yes!" Nodding, Zhang Xuan took two steps backward while pulling Elder Xu's body with him before abruptly stomping on the ground. All of a sudden, the paused formation whirred into life once more, bringing the thick layer of mist back around the courtyard.

"What?" Alarmed, the Violetleaf King immediately rushed forward.

However, he soon found himself lost within the formation which he could traverse through easily a few moments ago, as if someone had altered its structure. At this rate, that two fellows would escape before he was able to find them.

In this instant, he realized that he had been tricked. The guard had used the Waterleaf King's corpse to distract him.

"Damn it!" With a savage look on his face, killing intent began spilling forth from the Violetleaf King's body. In the blink of an eye, he reverted back to his Otherworldly Demon form. He thrust his palm forward and struck the formation.

He was intending to break the formation down using brute force.

With his prowess as a Saint 4-dan expert, destroying the formation of a grade-6 pinnacle formation posed no difficulty at all.


Zhang Xuan took a glance at the overburdened formation around him before quickly turning to the debilitated elder before him and asked, "Elder Xu, are you fine?"

"Who are you?" Elder Xu asked doubtfully.

"I am a poison master, but this isn't a good time for us to talk about that. We have to escape right now, or else we might very well die here!"

While speaking, the formation shook violently once more, seemingly on the verge of collapsing.

"Poison master?" Elder Xu frowned. However, after a brief moment of hesitation, he eventually nodded and said, "Indeed, this isn't the place for us to talk. We can discuss about the matter once we get out!"

"Un." Zhang Xuan nodded. "I have been in the City Lord Manor for some time now, so I am rather familiar with its layout and formations. Elder Xu, follow me!"

After saying those words, he quickly rushed off in a certain direction.

On the other hand, Elder Xu took out a pill and swallowed it. His ghastly pale complexion finally regained a slight red tinge to it. After which, he got to his feet and quickly followed the other party's footsteps.

He did harbor some doubts towards the other party's identity as a poison master, but given the circumstances they were in, he had little choice but to follow him. The other party was his only hope out at the moment.

Following behind the other party, they swiftly made their way out of the courtyard before skillfully maneuvering around the City Lord Manor.

While making their way out, Elder Xu realized that not only did the other party have a deep understanding of the layout of the City Lord Manor, he had a frightening grasp of the formations in the area as well. With just a light tap or kick, he could easily activate the many unactivated formations throughout the manor, stalling the tightly-pursuing Violetleaf King.

Not too long later, they managed to make their way out of the City Lord Manor. They swiftly flew away while keeping their bodies close to the surface. This would make it harder for the Violetleaf King to find them, thus buying them even more time to get to safety.

After flying for around twenty breaths, they finally stopped before a vast building.

"This is... Inkcloud Quarter?" Elder Xu was taken aback.

He had long heard of the famous Inkcloud Quarter of Jingyuan City, and he had even been here quite a few times himself. They were still being pursued by their enemies, so why would the other party bring him here all of the sudden?

"Our enemies control the City Lord Manor. If we were to escape right now, regardless of where we escape, it won't take long for their men to find and capture us, especially considering the state of injury you are in. Thus, it will be better for us to find a place to hide and recuperate at first!" Noticing the doubts in Elder Xu's eyes, Zhang Xuan explained.

"You're right." Elder Xu nodded in agreement.

The other party was right. Jingyuan City was located amidst a snowy plain, so there was no cover they could make use of beyond the city. If they were to attempt to escape now, it was very likely that they would be spotted by the men of the City Lord Manor. If so, there was a good chance they might find themselves cornered.

On top of possessing a deep understanding of formations, the other party was a particularly intelligent person as well.

With such thoughts in mind, he followed the other party into Inkcloud Quarter. Turning at several bends, he soon found himself standing before a chamber.

The chamber was embedded with a formation that could isolate all auras within.

"This should help us hide from them for a while." Zhang Xuan said as he stepped into the chamber.

This was the same place where he taught Hu Yunsheng a lesson previously. Considering the elaborate security measures implemented on the chamber, it was the most apt for the current situation they were in.

"Un." Elder Xu nodded as he entered the chamber. Instead of going straight into recuperating from his injuries, he turned his gaze towards Zhang Xuan instead, and with a sharp glint in his eyes, he asked, "You said that you are a poison master. Do you have an emblem to ascertain your identity?"

Honestly speaking, it was a little hard for him to believe that the Nascent Saint cultivator before him had managed to save him from the clutches of a Saint 4-dan expert so easily.

There was a chance that the both of them were in cahoots with one another, and they were intentionally putting up this show to convince him to bring them to the Poison Hall.

"I don't have an emblem." Zhang Xuan shook his head. "I have been studying poison by myself so far, so I haven't taken any poison master examination yet…"

"You haven't taken any poison master examination yet?" Elder Xu's face darkened. "Do you think that it is possible to study poison by oneself? You might be able to fool amateurs with those words, but do you honestly expect me to believe the words you are speaking?"

To become a master in the Way of Poison, one would have to examine and study the properties of all kinds of poison. The slightest bit of mistake could lead to death, and even under the guidance of a teacher, it wasn't uncommon for poison masters to accidentally poison themselves to death. Yet, the fellow before him was saying that he had been studying poison by himself? He must be joking!

"I knew that you wouldn't believe it…" Seeing the other party's expression, Zhang Xuan shook his head bitterly and said, "Honestly speaking, there is no way I can really explain it to you... Since that's the case, why don't you have a poison match with me? If you were to win, it goes without saying that I will die in your hands. On the other hand, if I win, I hope that you can bring me to the Poison Hall so that I can officially take the poison master examination!"

"You wish to have a poison match with me?" Elder Xu looked at the young man before him with narrowed eyes.

In truth, the possession of an emblem wasn't a clear indicator of one's identity either. After all, the enemy could always kill a poison master and steal his emblem over.

The only reliable method to identify a poison master was through his usage of poison!

If the other party was really capable of wielding poison as a weapon, he had to be a real poison master. There was no way to fake that.

"Alright then!"

Elder Xu nodded.



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