Library of Heaven is Path
1251 Zhang Xuan Imparts an Ultimate Technique 2
Zhao Xingmo was fuming inside. However, as angry as he was, there was no way he could take that kick head on. Thus, he quickly sidestepped to avoid it.
It was not that he was afraid that he would be crippled as well, but that he couldn't afford to lose his face as a result of this!
As soon as Zhao Xingmo fled to the side, Zhang Jiuxiao's fingers immediately shot for his armpit. It turned out that the attack toward his crotch was only a feint—the other party's real goal was this!
"To deduce the movement technique I would use in reaction to your kick and assault my armpit, where a mingmen of the movement technique is located…" Zhao Xingmo narrowed his eyes in disbelief.
The other party's finger was accurately aimed at the point where the greatest mingmen of his movement technique was located! If he were to be struck, his entire body would be numbed, resulting in a complete loss in his fighting prowess!
It was too much of a coincidence to think that the other party had found his mingmen by sheer luck in the middle of a battle. Rather, it seemed more likely that the other party had predicted this right from the start.
Zhao Xingmo realized that he was already dragged into Zhang Jiuxiao's pace from the very first strike... The young man's combat sense was really a little way too strong!
"Such a cunning fellow. He has been waging a psychological war against me right from the start…"
As a Saint 6-dan master teacher, it didn't take long for Zhao Xingmo to see through the crux of the matter.
Pavilion Master Wu casually mentioning that Song shi had his manhood crippled had left a subconscious notion in his mind, so when Zhang Jiuxiao angled his attack between his crotch, he didn't doubt that it would possibly be a feint in that instant.
To think that he had already lost in the psychological warfare prior to the battle...
"If it were to be any other ordinary Primordial Spirit realm cultivator, they would have been forced into a corner with this blow. Without at least ten moves, it would be impossible to turn the tables around. However, it's unfortunate that your opponent is me!"
Zhao Xingmo twisted his body to avoid Zhang Jiuxiao's finger jab. At the same time, he raised his hand and jabbed his finger toward the latter as well.
Finger against finger, Zhao Xingmo was intending to use his superior strength and comprehension of battle technique to forcefully overpower Zhang Jiuxiao, and through doing so, he would be able to regain to turn the tides of the battle back to his side.
Even though their cultivation were both at Primordial Spirit realm intermediate stage, it was apparent that the might of Zhao Xingmo's finger jab was far stronger than Zhang Jiuxiao's. Even before the finger arrived, the air was already groaning under the immense pressure, and vaguely, the sound of a storm could be heard.
In face of the might of Zhao Xingmo's finger jab, Zhang Jiuxiao was visibly flustered. Knowing that he couldn't face such an attack face on, he hurriedly retracted his finger. But perhaps because he was too anxious, his body ended up tilting to the side, placing his head in the trajectory of Zhao Xingmo's finger jab.
Seeing this, Zhao Xingmo frowned.
With his strength, if his finger jab were to land, Zhang Jiuxiao's head would explode on the spot. In other words, Zhang Jiuxiao would die!
In the first place, as a Saint 6-dan expert, his choice of intervening in a duel between juniors was already one that many would frown upon. If he were to kill Zhang Jiuxiao on top of that... without a doubt, he would be stripped of his position as a guide to the Sanctum of Sages.
Thus, Zhao Xingmo pulled back his might, and the sudden withdrawal of zhenqi left a groan escaping from his mouth, and his face reddened from the backlash.
If he hadn't suppressed his cultivation, this bit of backlash would have been nothing at all. However, with his current cultivation of Primordial Spirit realm intermediate stage, and given the fact that he had devoted his full strength into the finger jab on top of that, the sudden withdrawal of his attack inevitably left him with some injuries.
But even though Zhao Xingmo had withdrawn his finger in order to avoid killing Zhang Jiuxiao, the latter, seemingly having expected Zhao Xingmo to react in such a way, abruptly charged forward to knock Zhao Xingmo's chest with his shoulder.
With a deep frown between his brows, Zhao Xingmo swiftly struck his palm forward to ward off Zhang Jiuxiao's charge.
That palm strike moved at an astonishing speed, such that it would land on Zhang Jiuxiao before his charge could strike Zhao Xingmo.
Zhao Xingmo was still guessing that Zhang Jiuxiao might retreat for the time being before launching another wave of attack when he suddenly heard a faint voice sounding in the air. Following which, he suddenly felt a piercing jab beneath his armpit. Unknowingly, Zhang Jiuxiao's fingers had already landed on his mingmen.
Zhao Xingmo felt his strength receding swiftly from him as if a tide, and in an instant, numbness and powerlessness permeated his entire body.
After landing his finger jab, Zhang Jiuxiao didn't continue his assault. Instead, he hurriedly leaped back before clasping his fist apologetically, "Zhao shi, thank you for sparing me earlier…"
"Hmph!" Driving his zhenqi, Zhao Xingmo was able to swiftly recover from his numbed state. However, the loss had left him so frustrated that he couldn't speak a word.
If Zhang Jiuxiao were to continue his assault after his mingmen was struck, he would surely have been pummeled badly... And just thinking about the matter was enough to leave him stifled within.
"If Zhao shi intended to kill me, I would have died by the second blow. I apologize for using such a despicable trick against you…" Noticing Zhao Xingmo's displeasure, Zhang Jiuxiao lowered his head further and continued apologizing.
In truth, in the second move, if Zhao Xingmo hadn't retracted his finger for fear of endangering his life, he would have never been able to close in on him. It was only due to Zhao Xingmo's forceful withdrawal of his finger jab that gave him an opportunity to strike.
It could be said that he had played on the other party's compassion to achieve victory.
"Forget it. A victory is a victory, I have no excuses for my loss!" Zhao Xingmo waved his hand impassively. "I'll allocate Qingyuan Empire with two slots, but note that this is only the preliminary selections. I hope that you will be able to retain your slot during the secondary selections, or else your effort would have gone to vain!"
While Zhang Jiuxiao did resort to underhanded tricks to achieve victory, he did mention beforehand that all tricks were allowed. Furthermore, Zhang Jiuxiao had not just withstood three moves form him, he had subdued him even...
Just from that in itself, it was undeniable that this battle was Zhang Jiuxiao's victory.
Since that was the case, it wasn't a big deal for him to give out another slot... However, whether they would be able to secure this slot would depend on their performance at Qianchong Empire later on.
"Is this the insight you have imparted to him?" Zhao Xingmo glanced at Zhang Xuan and asked.
Judging from Zhang Jiuxiao's reflexes, it was unlikely that he would be able to come up with such a plan in the middle of the battle. Since that was the case, this matter would have to be linked back to Zhang Xuan, especially considering the bizarre five minutes break he had called for earlier.
"Un. They are three maneuvers that I casually came up with earlier." Knowing that there was no point hiding this from Zhao Xingmo, Zhang Xuan clasped his fist and replied truthfully.
"Casually?" Zhao Xingmo scoffed. "A maneuver you came up with casually is able to predict that I would use the [Steps of Stalling Leaves], which mingmen was located beneath my armpit. Not to mention, you were even able to take into account the fact that I wouldn't kill Zhang Jiuxiao, and after retracting my finger jab, I would have to take half a step back in order to ward off the momentum from the withdrawing energy, so you had Zhang Jiuxiao to dash forward to strike my mingmen in this temporary opening... Do you expect me to believe that?"
There was no such thing as a coincidence in battle.
Of the three moves that Zhang Jiuxiao had used earlier, the first one was psychological warfare, the second one had him putting his life on the line as a gamble, and the third one was a result of a careful calculation... Only one who had a thorough understanding of Zhao Xingmo's habits in battle would be able to design such a battle plan to deal with him...
Considering how every single step of the plan took advantage of his weaknesses, there was no way it could be something that was 'casually came up with'.
"I guess I was lucky then." Zhang Xuan replied.
In truth, the reason why he had the Golden Origin Cauldron assault Zhao Xingmo earlier was to force him to execute a battle technique, thus allowing him to compile a book on him in the Library of Heaven's Path.
With a compiled book, he would be able to gain a thorough understanding of Zhao Xingmo's strongest moves and flaws, thus making it easy for him to tailor a set of maneuvers to corner him.
However, considering that the secret of the Library of Heaven's Path was at stake here, he could only feign ignorance in this matter.
"Lucky?" Seeing that Zhang Xuan was unwilling to speak any further on this matter, Zhao Xingmo decided not to ask any further either. Shaking his head, he took a look at Zhang Xuan and said, "Just a casual pointer from you can allow Zhang Jiuxiao to defeat me within three moves... If I were to suppress my cultivation once more, would you be willing to face me in a battle?"
"You want to have a duel with me?" Zhang Xuan was taken aback.
"That's right." Zhao Xingmo nodded.
To be honest, he was really getting more and more interested in the young man before him.
To subdue two listening in students of the Sanctum of Sages easily within three blows... To grant Zhang Jiuxiao the strength to defeat him with just a casual pointer...
If the young man before him were to utilize his full strength, just how powerful would he be?
"Ah... That might not be a good idea. I'm afraid that there might be a fatality!" Zhang Xuan shook his head.
"Don't worry. I'll immediately release my seal as soon as I feel that you are in danger. You will be safe." Seeing that Zhang Xuan was slightly apprehensive at the idea of having a duel with him, Zhao Xingmo consoled.
When two cultivators of equal strength fought with one another, it was indeed very easy for a fatality to occur as they would be unable to control their strength precisely in battle. However, Zhao Xingmo was a Saint 6-dan cultivator, so if they were to find themselves in the middle of a perilous situation during their duel, he would at least still be able to release his seal and take control over the situation.
"I'm not referring to myself... I'm afraid that you will be unable to withstand my attacks…" Seeing that the other party had misunderstood his words, Zhang Xuan explained awkwardly.
"You…" Zhao Xingmo nearly exploded on the spot.
It is one thing for you to remain unfrightened and fearless in a battle against a guide of the Sanctum of Sages, but to actually worry that you would hurt me... Ludicrous!
"You don't need to worry about hurting me. Given my cultivation realm, it'll be difficult for you to inflict any damage on me!" Zhao Xingmo replied coldly with a livid face.
"This…" Zhang Xuan was still a little hesitant.
"Feel free to make a move! I know that you possess exceptional strength, and your talent is superior to your peers too. However, all of these are nothing in the eyes of the true experts of the Sanctum of Sages!" Zhao Xingmo placed his hands behind his back as he spoke in an air unique to experts.
The Sanctum of Sages was the highest academy in the Master Teacher Continent. Even the powerful Sage Clans would send their offspring there in order to study. From that in itself, it was apparent just how formidable the personnel there were.
Do you really think that a countryside bumpkin like you would really be able to defeat me?
The only reason why he fell from Zhang Jiuxiao's tricks was out of a moment of carelessness! Now that he was fully prepared, there was no way he would allow himself to be defeated that easily anymore!
"Since that's the case... I'll give it a try then." Seeing how confident Zhao Xingmo was, Zhang Xuan's eyes lit up in excitement.
To be honest, as he had just achieved a breakthrough, he had been wanting to find someone to test out his newfound strength. The reason why he initially turned down Zhao Xingmo was because he was afraid that he might accidentally hurt the latter, considering that he still lacked precise control over his strength especially since he hadn't really tried it out in battle yet. But since Zhao Xingmo was so confident about this matter, there was no longer any reason for him to turn down this precious opportunity.
"Let's begin then!" Taking a deep breath, Zhao Xingmo grasped his hands tightly together, and strength began flowing through his entire body.
In his view, even though Zhang Xuan's talent was not too bad, he was simply too arrogant. This would be a good opportunity for him to striked down the young man's conceit and have him understand that there was a world far larger than the one that he could see.
"Alright, I'll be making a move then…" Zhang Xuan warned in advance.
"Hmph." Sneering coldly, Zhao Xingmo paid no heed to Zhang Xuan's words and dashed forward furiously. However, before he could make a move, he suddenly saw a palm print falling straight for him.
In that instant, it felt as if the entire world was caving in on him.
Zhao Xingmo felt as if his entire body had been frozen in place, rendering him unable to move at all. Before he could even begin to breathe, he was already struck squarely in the chest, causing his body to retreat swiftly into the distance. At the same time, a wild spurt of fresh blood colored the air crimson.
Boom boom boom boom!
Zhao Xingmo immediately drove his zhenqi, wanting to ward off the momentum from his retreat. However, in the next moment, his eyes narrowed. Countless palm prints abruptly appeared before his eyes.
The other party's follow up attack wasn't just a single palm strike but thousands of them!
His back crashed heavily into the walls of the hall, causing a deep depression behind him.
Unable to withstand the impact anymore, he swiftly unsealed his cultivation, and only then did he barely manage to fend off the attack. Just as he was heaving a sigh of relief, Zhang Xuan's forlorn voice suddenly sounded ahead of him.
"I thought that he was really that formidable, but he was sent flying before I could even use a fifth of my strength... In the end, he was nothing more than a braggart…"