The two of them looked equally awful.
There was no need to mention Wang Xi. Half of his face had almost been entirely blackened, and weird fire seemed to be bouncing on his eyeball, which had collapsed, causing him to grimace in pain. His facial nerves were cramping incessantly, and he did not look any better than the angry Mother White Lotus!
Li Yao, however, was not delighted, either.
He did not secure the advantage that he wanted in the new round, and he even revealed the secret of his ‘apocalyptic body’!
There was not a dedicated term to describe ‘demons’ in the Ancient Sages Sector. However, a lot of barbarians scattered at the edge of the continent far away from the center of civilization carried the bloodlines of demons.
It was likely because the members of the Thunder Striker Legion, a troop with strengthened cells that the Nuwa Clan brought to attack this war base of the Pangu Clan, had been marrying other human soldiers in the hundreds of thousands of years since the battle. Gradually, their bloodlines had spread, and they had evolved into the great number of barbarians.
Since the Ancient Sages Sector had not gone through the ‘Great Dark Era’, the intense contradiction between human beings and demons did not exist. The barbarians and the civilized people were basically classified according to their culture.
For those who had bizarre demon bloodlines, as long as they embrace the culture of the central plateaus, they would not be regarded as eccentrics.
As Master Spiritual Vulture, who was born a barbarian Cultivator, it was not very strange for Li Yao to display part of the features of the demons.
However, the real problem was that the demon features that he displayed were overly eye-catching. The coldly shining claws and bone spurts, the crimson eyeballs, the greenish scales, and most unbelievably of all, the crystal in his palm that could trigger the Cell Obliteration Cannon. He was almost a demi-demon and could not have looked more hideous and terrifying.
Such distinctive idiosyncrasies and such a cool pose would certainly be a hidden problem for him in the near future, even if they did not raise Wang Xi’s immediate suspicion!
Li Yao narrowed his eyes. For the first time during the battle, intense killing intent flowed out of his heart as he calculated whether or not he was capable of killing Wang Xi instantly if he summoned his crystal suit.
However, the result of his calculation was not good.
Wang Xi had already stepped back to the edge of the cliff. It was obvious that he would dash into the ocean and flee immediately if anything went wrong!
For an expert on Wang Xi’s level who was at least at the peak of the Nascent Soul Stage, he certainly had many more secrets than he cared to admit. Even if equipped with the crystal suit, Li Yao was not confident that he could finish him. He feared that the guy would only learn more secrets about him!
What was most depressing for Li Yao was that, after exposing such a critical trump card, he gained absolutely nothing about the Divine Palace from Wang Xi’s mouth!
He had pretended to be feeble in order to elicit as much intelligence about the Divine Palace as possible from the guy, a move that had never failed him in the past!
It had not occurred to him that the ladyboy had such keen senses and such a tight mouth!
“What marvelous Berserker Arts. It appears that the Cultivators have greatly underestimated you the whole time, Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture!”
Covering his wounded right cheek, Wang Xi spoke slowly, one word after another. His charming voice that was as comforting as spring breeze had turned into the freezing wind.
The so-called ‘Berserker Arts’ was a secret technique that the barbarian Cultivators with demon bloodlines adopted to activate the primeval cells inside their body. It was a rather uncommon skill among the Cultivators.
Wang Xi had read a lot of books when he was the librarian of the royal library of the Great Qian Dynasty. He mistook Li Yao’s apocalyptic body for the result of the ‘Berserker Arts’.
Li Yao was slightly relieved. He calculated all the details on the desolate island quickly, trying to find the best routes of attack, while he chuckled. “But Lord Wang, you were even more marvelous to have sensed it in advance.”
Wang Xi sniffed and said, “You can stop wasting your time concocting another ambush, Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture. We are both heavily wounded right now. If either of us is determined to run away, it is impossible for the other one to stop him. Any means of attack will only be a waste of strength! Besides, believe it or not, Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture, to this moment, I still believe that we do not have fundamental conflicts. On the contrary, I’m growing more and more interested in you now.”
Li Yao intentionally stared at Wang Xi’s voluptuous breasts and said, “I believe that the feeling is mutual.”
“Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture, you are known to be ‘Grandmaster of Great Zhou’ right now. So, you should be a man of honor and prestige!” Wang Xi’s voice was filled with coldness and anger. “Do you not feel that looking at other people in such a way is too insulting?”
“I’m just curious.” Li Yao smiled and retreated his gaze. “Is it a male or female that is hiding beneath the shell named ‘Wang Xi’? Has Wang Xi been pretending to be Long Yangjun, or has Long Yangjun been pretending to be Wang Xi?
“I believe that you know that there are a lot of rumors about you among the Cultivators. Many of them even suspect that you are a ‘natural eunuch’!
“However, I do find such a theory a bit queer. Lord Wang, you are a world-famous, powerful eunuch. Does a ‘natural eunuch’ sound any more despicable than a ‘lead eunuch’?
“Or, if you are in fact a woman, such an identity does not seem to be worth covering, either. Maybe in the past while you were still in the court, the identity of a powerful eunuch was of use to you, but you have come to this point where your greatest reliance is your strength instead of your power. Does it really matter whether you are a man or a woman, as long as your strength remains with you?
“However, while fight you, Lord Wang, I obviously felt that you are very sensitive about your identity. You seem to be hiding a secret that is even more appalling than ‘Wang Xi is a woman’. What is it exactly?”
Wang Xi stared at Li Yao for a long time. Then, he sighed softly, as if he found it difficult to understand why Li Yao had to pursue that question. He gloomily said, “Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture, do you not know that you should never trouble trouble until trouble troubles you?
“The two of us do not know each other, and we have never had any grudges. We could’ve cooperated in the exploration of the Divine Palace and gotten what we wanted respectively. Why do we have to be wary of each other and even fight each other until one of us survives?
“If you have to pursue the trivia such as whether I’m a man or a woman, and I’m forced to counterattack with my full strength, investigating whether or not you are the real Master Spiritual Vulture, we will both suffer losses. Why do you have to hurt each other?”
Li Yao’s smile instantly froze.
Taking advantage of Li Yao’s shock, Wang Xi attacked again. A galaxy of sword auras was flowing in the sky of the desolate island again!
Li Yao hurried to defend himself, only to discover that Wang Xi’s dominating attack was just a disguise.
When the sword auras in midair were all gone, Wang Xi had already opened his arms and stood on his tiptoes on the cliff at the edge of the desolate island.
But there was one more thing inside his hand—the map core of the Divine Palace!
In the haste, Wang Xi had no time to store the enormous Thousand Stars Tray back into his Cosmos Ring and only managed to take back the map core. He shook his hand, and it vanished between his fingers like a grain of sand.
“If you are eager to find out my secrets…” Wang Xi smiled confidently, with vague femininity that was mixed with male intimidation. “Let’s talk again when we meet in the Divine Palace!”
Tipping the land softly, he flew more than ten kilometers away like a kite whose string was cut off and dived into the dark, black ocean, without raising the tiniest spindrift.
Li Yao’s eyes were still twitching, even more fiercely than before.
His natural instincts were not wrong. Wang Xi was indeed a person of paramount importance in the Ancient Sages Sector!
With a gloomy face, Li Yao walked to a corner and carefully studied the shackle that had been cracked by Wang Xi on one of his knees.
The shackle was intact. Neither the circulation of spiritual energy nor the mechanical structure was damaged at all.
Judging from the tiny scratches left on the shackle, it was almost as if Wang Xi had slid out like a ghost!
Li Yao tilted his head and thought for a long time, yet he failed to figure out exactly how Wang Xi had freed himself from the trap.
He only reaffirmed his judgement that, except for the unimaginable Divinity Transformation Stage Cultivators, nobody could break free from the shackle instantly without being harmed!
Hiu! Hiu! Hiu! Hiu!
Fulminations were echoing in the clouds behind him, implying that four strong Cultivators were flying at a supersonic speed.
Li Yao wiped his face and took a few deep breaths, retracting the hideous claws, tusks, and bone spurts into his body.
“What has happened here, Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture?”
Qi Zhongdao, Yan Liren, Ba Xiaoyu, and Master Bitter Cicada landed on the desolate island.
It appeared that Wang Xi had only fled when he perceived that the four super Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators were approaching. Otherwise, he might have had another few rounds in the game with Li Yao!
Looking at the components of the Thousand Stars Tray that were strewn on the ground, and glancing at Ba Xiaoyu, Master Bitter Cicada, and the rest of them, Li Yao cleared his throat and interpreted what had happened carefully.
After ten minutes, Qi Zhongdao, Ba Xiaoyu, and Master Bitter Cicada’s faces all turned grave.
Even Yan Liren, who was never interested in anything other than sword arts, raised his eyebrows high.
“The Divine Palace, the Cloud Qin Gold Statues, and the path to the deities’ realm?”
“Wang Xi, Wan Mingzhu, Qi Changsheng, and Han Baling—the Four Rapscallions—have joined their hands?”
Even the four resolute super Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators were rubbing their hands quickly at the shocking news.
“The Cloud Qin Gold Statues are the legendary ultimate treasures. One of them may be enough to change the outcome of a whole battle!” Master Bitter Cicada sighed. “If Han Baling, Wan Mingzhu, Qi Changsheng, or the likes of them pick up a few Cloud Qin Gold Statues, they may be able to turn the world upside down and raise catastrophes!”
Ba Xiaoyu the Beggar frowned and said, “Wang Xi is best known for his cunning schemes. Everything about the ‘Divine Palace’ is just his side of the story. It may not be necessarily true!
“However, whatever Wang Xi’s purpose is, it is indeed a big deal that the Four Rapscallions are cooperating. One moment of carelessness, and the world will be in chaos, and the people will bleed!”
“We have to find the Divine Palace before the Four Rapscallions do!” Qi Zhongdao said solemnly. “It’s a pity that Wang Xi has the map now.”
“It doesn’t matter,” Li Yao said casually. “I browsed through the map and the structure of the Divine Palace just now, and I can duplicate them even without the core! The biggest problem is that, since Wang Xi’s Cultivation is on par with mine, he should be able to copy the map from his memories even if he does not have the ‘Thousand Stars Tray’ to parse it!”