Chapter 205: A Battle of Robbing Paths
Xiao Qixiu had an expression of despair on his face.
He knew the other man was not bragging at all.
Since he knew who the man was, he could attest to the mans abilities better than anyone else.
Only those who truly knew the masked man would realize he was not acting pompous.
He was merely stating the truth.
“Your sword is shaking.”
The masked man pointed out casually.
He looked at Xiao Qixiu, who was still in shock, and he continued.
“I see a swordsman who cant even hold his sword properly in front of his enemy.
How could such a swordsman even think of protecting anyone else then”
It should be something you must remember, especially when you stand in front of the man you fear facing the most.”
Xiao Qixiu looked at Su Qianqian, who was still in his arms, and the look in his eyes hardened.
The masked man was right.
Regardless of who the enemy may be, or how powerful they were, he should never allow his sword to shake.
The masked man continued with words as sharp as blades, striking to the very core of Xiao Qixius mind.
“The sword is the foremost among all weapons.
And judging from how you are already shaking, youre already afraid before you engage in combat.
How do you suppose you can fight me then”
Those who fear treading the path cannot cut down the said path.”
Those words struck Xiao Qixiu like lightning and made his mind go blank immediately.
“Cutting down the path…” Xiao Qixiu mumbled.
He was oblivious to the fact that he was already looking like a loser.
“The fight of the Great Path is one where a false step could bring about ones doom.”
One who holds a sword yet trembles will not go far.
I would advise you to give up instead, and you may even live a good life.”
The masked man continued bombarding Xiao Qixiu with words, causing the latter to look more flustered and discouraged.
Xiao Qixiu felt like a star that had lost its luster.
One that dared not flicker for fear of getting overshadowed by the moonlight.
Xiao Qixius aura now appeared to become even weaker.
The masked man snickered mockingly and said, “It looks like your path does not seem like much after all, given that someone could rob you of it with just a few choice words.”
The masked mans words awakened Xiao Qixiu instantly, causing him to break out in a cold sweat.
Was someone taking his path away from him
Was the masked man robbing him of his path
The fight among those at Sovereign levels had always been a fight at the level of the Great Path.
If ones path was overwhelmed by the other partys, the said person would be doomed and could never recover from it.
It would be like a person losing his way in life if he lost faith in his principles.
Both Xiao Qixiu and the masked man were swordsmen.
But Xiao Qixiu allowed the masked man to ridicule him so much that he lost his self-belief.
If it were to continue this way, it would crush his Great Path, and Xiao Qixiu would either end up dead or grievously injured in the fight.
The realization of what just happened created doubts in his mind, and Xiao Qixiu became somewhat anxious.
Both men were on opposing sides, and that meant trying to overcome his opponents path.
Indeed, it was expected and understandable.
So why did the masked man have to keep berating him if he was about to succeed
It did not feel like the masked man was trying to rob him of his path, but more like someone who was trying to win the psychological battle.
Xiao Qixiu wore a puzzled expression as he pondered.
If someone else were to be in the masked mans shoes, it would have been impossible for them to shake Xiao Qixius beliefs with such ease.
Frankly, in encounters at the Sovereign level, it would be safe to say that very few could successfully rob their opponents of their paths.
The masked man before him was different in the sense that if he were to walk his path to the very end, then…
Xiao Qixiu would be utterly defeated.
Xiao Qixiu gripped his sword firmly, and his eyes gleamed like a bright moon.
Without the pressure from the masked man, he probably would not have reached such a conclusion.
His mind was now clear, and all the gnawing doubts in his head were no more.
Ultimately, the goal of cultivators of their kind was to slay those whom they perceive as gods.
It included the masked man standing before him—someone he perceived to be a god.
“Put the sword down!”
It was the third time he uttered those words, and he seemed to have gone through a massive transformation.
He looked prepared to cast his sword to the clouds and tear the night apart.
The masked man chuckled coldly.
He ignored Xiao Qixiu altogether, turned around, and was about to leave.
“Take her with you and begone.
I am in no mood to kill anyone tonight,” he said.
His actions stunned Xiao Qixiu, who did not expect such a turn of events.
He was about to make his move, but common sense told him to do otherwise.
After all, the man before him was…
However, as he recalled during the enlightenment to his path, he was reminded to move forward regardless of the odds.
He had just made his first step when he realized that the girl in his arms grabbed the collar of his shirt.
He looked down and saw Su Qianqian pursing her lips and shaking her head.
To the girl in his arms, the choice was the famed sword or his life.
It was a tough choice.
But she already knew her answer.
However, Xiao Qixiu was still deliberating.
His life or the Great Path, he contemplated.
He remained silent and halted his advance.
The night was chilly.
The wind blew throughout the mountains, sweeping flowers back and forth, and the cries of the condors screeched through the night.
The shadow of the masked man grew increasingly long and faint.
He stayed alert as he withdrew, waiting for the man behind him to make his move, yet he did not move.
Well, have it his way then, he thought.
The masked man then shook his head and sighed.
His silhouette disappeared as he turned around a corner.
“There is too much holding you back.
You are not fit to become a swordsman.
You might as well give up.”
There was a rumble.
Xiao Qixius Great Path, manifested only moments ago, was about to crumble after hearing what the man had said.
Then it gradually disintegrated.
He was still gripping his sword tightly, and his eyes filled with doubt.
His confidence was broken, and it would be a challenge to get it back up again.
Su Qianqian was thoroughly shocked.
It did not occur to her that one step would cause Xiao Qixiu to plunge into such internal turmoil that made him hover between life and death.
“Master…” she called out to him.
Xiao Qixiu wore an expression of pain as he gritted his teeth, and a trace of blood dripped from the corner of his mouth.
“Im fine… Cough!”
Blood spurted out from his mouth and splattered on Su Qianqians terrified face.
Her master was not feeling fine at all, and his life was hanging on a thread.
Xiao Qixiu dropped to his knees with a thud, and the aura emanating from him was weak, similar to that of a dying man.
He cast Su Qianqian aside immediately.
The girl was in tears, struggling to get up to attend to him.
“Stay over there!”
Xiao Qixiu stabbed his sword into the ground, his eyes filled with frustration and regret.
He was wrong!
He finally saw how someone could go about killing people by causing them to have mental breakdowns.
The masked man had first used the foundation of the Great Path to influence Xiao Qixiu by giving him a goal of “slaying the gods” with no regard for anything else.
But the masked man knew Xiao Qixiu would never raise a finger against him.
The masked man then turned and walked.
If Xiao Qixiu could not catch up and draw his sword, it was tantamount to Xiao Qixiu denying the righteousness of his path.
Xiao Qixiu just got fooled.
He was breaking down, and the deathly aura around him became more apparent.
When someone lost their path, it would be unbelievably difficult for them to keep themselves together.
Worse still, the one he had just faced was someone formidable—the masked man.
He was doomed the very moment they met.
Su Qianqian shouted at the top of her lungs.
She had initially wanted to keep her master alive by giving up her sword and had never expected that she could not save her master.
Xiao Qixiu looked at his beloved disciple and chuckled bitterly and finally came to realize something on the brink of death.
To be honest about it, what had happened to him was not the masked mans fault.
If only he had kept pace and drawn his sword firmly, he thought.
Perhaps he might have successfully cut down his path.
He then cast his gaze at the path where the masked mans silhouette disappeared.
He clenched his fists.
The opportunity was right before his eyes, yet he had miscalculated.
“Stay where you are, I am…”
Xiao Qixiu closed his eyes in pain.
It was the end for him.
Suddenly, an explosion reverberated at the far end of the path before them and it sounded like someone had been pummeled to the ground.
The master and disciple, both in tears, were stunned as they cast their gaze in the direction.
An enormous crater appeared yonder, and when the smoke and dust cleared, they could see the masked man clutching his chest with a black sword sticking out of it.
The scene baffled them.
The drops of blood sounded crystal clear as they hit the ground in the silence of the night.
Xiao Qixius eyeballs almost popped out of their sockets.
What he saw so shocked him that the disintegration of his Great Path slowed to a halt.
Someone had stabbed the masked man in his chest!
“What the hell!”