HSSB1031: The beaten phoenix
Battles between experts were generally tight affairs.
A single moment could decide one’s eventual victory.
Often, the combatants would possess similar strength.
Still, just a single misstep could lead to complete defeat.
An example was how the Northwestern Exalt Lian Zulin, not having known that Yan Di was protected by the Grand Simplicity Splendour Cloud, had instead been wounded by him.
Another example was Zhuang Shen right now.
If he had not attempted something risky and had instead fought stably, he would not be in as precarious a position as he was now.
Zhuang Shen’s head was badly bloodied, with him seeing stars as he was struck by the Extreme Yang Seal.
Being greatly experienced in battle, he knew that he definitely needed to stabilise himself at a time like this.
Otherwise, if Yan Zhaoge capitalised on his advantage and attacked with the Extreme Yang Seal, not giving him any respite whatsoever, he might have no chance of retaliating as he would just stupidly be slain by an Immortal Bridge Martial Saint without even having any real chance of demonstrating his prowess.
Still, Yan Zhaoge gave him no chance as he unleashed a Slaying Azure Dragon in hot pursuit.
Zhuang Shen could only barely withstand it as the brutal sword-qi unceasingly attempted to break through his true essence.
The water ripples of holy virtue shattered, the purple light of fortuitous virtue dimmed.
The thick earth of meritorious virtue tried hard to remedy this yet felt as if it lacked the strength to do so.
The white qi of nether virtue began exerting its primary use, giving Zhuang Shen a chance at life.
It blocked Yan Zhaoge’s Slaying Azure Dragon even as the terrifying Extreme Yang Seal slammed down from up above once more.
Zhuang Shen manipulated the golden Wutong tree, again barely managing to resist the Extreme Yang Seal.
Still, this Wutong tree was connected to his lifeblood as with him wounded now, the leaves and branches of the golden Wutong tree looked slightly shrivelled as their strength thus plummeted.
With that, the momentum of the Extreme Yang Seal was increasingly fierce as it suppressed that golden Wutong tree in descending non-stop, coming closer and closer to Zhuang Shen himself.
Lang Qing, Lian Zulin and Daoist Oneheaven all frowned as they saw this situation unfold.
The Western Exalt Lang Qing actually possessed the ability to assist Zhuang Shen.
Because he was the fastest, while he was unable to do anything to the Southeastern Exalt Cao Jie, if he wanted to help Zhuang Shen and the others, Cao Jie who could only wait passively to respond to his actions would not be able to obstruct him every single time.
He had assisted Lian Zulin a few times earlier during this battle.
While there was generally only the chance for a single move before he was tied down by Cao Jie once more, it was this that had disrupted Yan Di’s attacks, giving the wounded Lian Zulin enough time to stabilise her footing in their battle.
The Western Exalt Lang Qing utilised his ability to shift space to the maximum, his figure seeming omnipresent and indiscernible as no one could easily guess where he might show up next.
The entire battlefield was taken care of by him.
Besides the Northwestern Exalt Lian Zulin, the Eastern Exalt Daoist Oneheaven had received Lang Qing’s assistance too.
There was merely the Southern Exalt Zhuang Shen whom Lang Qing had not been able to assist.
It was not that he did not want to do so.
Instead, Yan Zhaoge possessed unordinary attainments in the Yin Yang Heavenly Scripture.
Unlike Yan Di who had only analysed the Yin Yang Heavenly Scripture slightly so as to boost his sabre intent and raise his qi returning speed, Yan Zhaoge possessed far greater attainments in the Yin Yang Heavenly Scripture than him.
Just like how neither Cao Jie nor Liu Zhenggu would attempt to encircle and attack the Northwestern Exalt Lian Zulin, who would be totally safe with the Yin Yang Finger unless her opponents were much more powerful than her or could dispel the Yin Yang Finger, if Lang Qing were to attack Yan Zhaoge, unless they were a chain flurry of attacks, any single random move from a distance away would just cause Yan Zhaoge to redirect his move towards the Southern Exalt Zhuang Shen, making it worse for him.
“There is still a type of method to break this situation with…” Lang Qing’s gaze flickered slightly.
Meanwhile, the gaze of the Southern Exalt Zhuang Shen who was being suppressed by Yan Zhaoge similarly flickered slightly.
Up above, the Extreme Yang Seal finally crushed the golden Wutong tree before descending again.
Zhuang Shen who was busy defending against Yan Zhaoge’s attacks had no way of resisting it as he suffered yet another blow from the Extreme Yang Seal!
Half of Zhuang Shen’s body was virtually charcoal-black now as he had only managed to evade that deadly tribulation with the help of the white qi of nether virtue and the purple light of fortuitous virtue.
Now, however, Yan Zhaoge did not continue with a killing blow as he instead executed the Taiyi Fist once more, suppressing Zhuang Shen.
Next, he devoted some effort to controlling the Extreme Yang Seal and turning to attack the Eastern Exalt Daoist Oneheaven!
On seeing this, everyone was shocked.
A number of the spectators were completely bewildered as they did not understand why Yan Zhaoge was giving up his chance to attack the already injured Zhuang Shen and attacking Daoist Oneheaven instead.
Everyone understood the logic that injuring ten fingers was still inferior to breaking a single one off.
That was the Southern Exalt, a Human Exalt, at the end of the day.
Even though he was injured, he still possessed remarkable strength.
While the spectators did not understand this, the gazes of the experts who were currently battling flickered simultaneously now.
“Good fella, composed enough,” The Northeastern Exalt Liu Zhenggu roared, “Leave him for last!”
Some amongst the spectators atop Broad Creed Mountain also now realised, “Yan Zhaoge is not giving the Southern Exalt a chance to undergo nirvanic rebirth!”
The single sentence broke everyone’s doubts as everyone was enlightened by it.
When martial practitioners of Phoenix Ritual Mountain’s Wutong Slope underwent nirvanic rebirth, their cultivation base and strength would be no different from prior to their rebirth as this was not simply a life-saving method.
Unless their strength had been diminished by a force like the Nine Bends Yellow River Formation prior to their nirvanic rebirth, their wounds would all be healed as they would appear at a peak state.
If Yan Zhaoge were to kill Zhuang Shen now, he would end up undergoing nirvanic rebirth and emerging with his wounds fully healed and overflowing with vitality.
At that time, having learnt from his lesson, Zhuang Shen would definitely not take risks again.
Instead, he would fight stably, making no mistakes.
It was not just that.
Along with the healing of his wounds, the currently deteriorated golden Wutong tree would be able to return to peak condition too.
In that case, it would not be so easy for Yan Zhaoge to be at as much of an advantage over Zhuang Shen as he was now.
Also, Zhuang Shen who was currently injured was indisputably much weaker in terms of combat power than when at his peak state.
Yan Zhaoge could definitely split some of his attention to assist the others and deal with Lang Qing, Daoist Oneheaven and Lian Zulin even as he tied him down.
He could deal with Zhuang Shen later when the three had either been defeated or had slunk away in retreat.
“Phoenixes cannot end themselves unless their vitalities have reached an end and they plunge into the fire in nirvanic rebirth,” Yan Zhaoge looked calmly at Zhuang Shen, “While you have attained great power in cultivating in the Phoenix True Form Scripture, you are similarly restricted by it.”
Zhuang Shen gazed coldly at Yan Zhaoge, not saying a word.
The Western Exalt Lang Qing frowned, “How incomparably glorious is defeating an Exalt at the Immortal Bridge stage Yet, this Yan Zhaoge is actually able to stay composed, not being full of himself and thus getting careless.
With that, this method of breaking the situation is unusable.”
“No wonder, no wonder…it is no wonder that he has arrived at where he is today.
This is not simply something that can be nurtured from talent in the martial dao as well as powerful martial arts and treasures alone.”
Lang Qing sighed as he instantly vanished from the spot, reappearing virtually immediately at a different location.
A transparent, formless spatial blade was condensed in his hand as he attempted to help Daoist Oneheaven block the Extreme Yang Seal.
Yet, the Southeastern Exalt Cao Jie successfully intercepted Lang Qing despite moving later as he blocked his spatial blade with his sword.