The two kilometer long canyon was surrounded by a steep cliff a few kilometer high, whereas the upper regions were also sealed by a special barrier. It was absolutely impossible for anyone to climb.
At the center of the two cliffs was a winding, long and narrow passage which had rugged rocks of all sizes lying on either side.
The combined team of the Iron Fist Club and Chaos Edge Hall, which comprised of one hundred and eighty five experts, hid behind those very jagged rocks, setting up a deadly trap.
In order to lure Li Yao into the trap, of the thirty sword cultivators that were originally guarding the Chaos Edge Hall's base, twenty were also transferred behind the jagged rocks for the ambush.
On the surface, only ten people were guarding the entire canyon.
"Will he be fooled?"
Lu Tieshan, who was hiding behind a huge piece of rock, asked in a somewhat tense manner.
"He will definitely be fooled, for we are similarly using a trap which is not a trap but is a trap!" Zhao Tianchong sneered and said, "In the meantime, both of us will continue to communicate with our respective team members, slowly calming everyone down, and ask them to retreat from the battlefield and converge on our position.
"And with the passage of time, more and more people will gather at the canyon, and in a few hours, we will recover our entire team or what's remaining of them!
"As for Li Yao, he can only carry a backpack full of magical equipment, a vast majority of which were jade chips that have fallen into our hands completely. How many more pieces of magical equipment can he still have to play any more tricks on us?
"Therefore, the only way for him to win is to have a race against time with us. He has to make use of the little time he has before we react and make a beeline to the canyon forcefully!"
While he was speaking, many members from both sides, who were laden with dust, continued to walk out of the forest as they stumbled towards the center of the canyon.
Fortunately, due to Li Yao's tactic of leveling the field, the overall battle force of both sides was almost the same, ensuring the dispute between both sides.
In order to mask the trails of late-coming surviving contestants, all of them had been arranged to proceed to the second-half of the canyon for the ambush.
"Feng Bing, Cao Le, as your legs are injured, it will be difficult for you to move. Thus, you should go to the latter part of the canyon for the ambush. If Li Yao actually manages to break through our heavy encirclement, you have to fight to the death. Even if you have to use your teeth, you must take a bite out of him!"
Waving his hand to the two limping members of Chaos Edge Hall, Zhao Tianchong said in somewhat impatient manner.
The two were far from lightly injured.
In particular, Cao Le, whose face had been heavily punched.
Although a majority of the attacks had been mitigated by the light armor, his face was still laden with black and blue bruises, as well as the injuries from the electric shock he had received.
While supporting each other, the two stumbled their way towards the latter part of the canyon.
God only knows how but Zhao Tianchong felt a chill in his heart as if they were committing some kind of fatal mistake.
By no means was this was the result of any kind of precise calculation but rather the intuition born from surviving in the Wasteland as a swordsman since his childhood.
As his sharp gaze shot towards the two people who just went past, under his nose, Zhao Tianchong shouted in a loud voice:
Feng Bing slightly trembled as he turned his head, perplexed.
Cao Le, on the other hand, turned a deaf ear and continued on his way.
Zhao Tianchong's complexion changed for worse as he shouted, "He is not Cao Le, he is Li Yao!"
In the blink of an eye, the entire atmosphere suddenly changed!
Cao Le, who was still limping and faltering just a moment ago, soared at a lightning fast speed just like a bullet and dashed towards the latter part of the canyon!
Meanwhile, from behind the rocks on either side of the narrow and winding pathway, thunderous and furious roars rang out as almost two hundred people charged towards him.
Many amongst the Iron Fist Club members were clutching fist-sized rocks which they ruthlessly threw at Li Yao.
"Li Yao, you cannot escape!"
Lu Tieshan let out a thunderous shout as he forcibly lifted up a thousand pound boulder and fiercely threw it towards the front.
Tapping the ground lightly, Li Yao's figure strangely turned seven to eight times in different direction as he dodged oncoming rocks one after another.
However, his charge had been interrupted by these oncoming rocks, slowing him down by half-a-beat.
Meanwhile, in this short moment, over a hundred people had already blocked the front of the narrow passage, while the remaining hundred people were outflanking him from both sides.
Noticing the road blocked, Li Yao preemptively rushed towards a tall contestant, bent his body and kicked him away just like a scorpion moving his tail without a moment of hesitation.
And then, taking advantage of the impact, turned around and fled towards the jungle!
"You still think you can escape?"
Zhao Tianchong sneered as several dozen sword aura soared into the sky before intertwining into a dense sword net and charged towards him.
Lu Tieshan and the others roared repeatedly and activated their spirit tattoos as billowing energy waves covered the sky and earth, catching up from Li Yao's rear.
Seeing that the encirclement was about to close, Li Yao suddenly blew a sharp whistle.
A couple dozen people burst into huge fireballs as their light armors emitted crackling noises and burst forth with bloody auras one after another. Apparently, they all have been completely stunned from the electric current.
These people had all been "struck down" one by one.
In the blink of an eye, a huge gap was forcefully opened in the encirclement.
As a matter of fact, this was still nothing, the fireballs were mixed in with dense black smoke which, in the blink of an eye, covered the entire field.
The entire scene was suddenly a huge mess, everyone was at a loss.
"Puff! Puff! Puff! Puff!"
Li Yao had been pierced by a number of sword auras.
At the end of the day, Li Yao wasn't any different than a normal person. Although he had created a series of chaos, how could it be possible for him to break through a sword net composed of a few dozen sword auras in a short period of time without paying some price?
His light armor released an intense current, making his entire face twitch in pain.
However, his speed soared once again. He was soon about to break out of the disordered encirclement.
"Lu Tieshan, now!"
Zhao Tianchong jumped up and unsheathed his sword. His entire body seemingly metamorphosed into a beam of sword aura.
Closely followed by Lu Tieshan who, in the blink of an eye, burst with an endless power as he ruthlessly punched just right at the sole of Zhao Tianchong. Whereupon, Zhao Tianchong's legs bent slightly as his speed by the impetus of this punch soared to a whole new level before he ruthlessly fired a beam of sword aura right at Li Yao's chest while predicting Li Yao's course of escape.
Li Yao let out a blood-curdling scream as his light armor burst forth with a couple dozen dazzling arcs of lightning that wrapped around his body.
Li Yao's light armor flashed with a light, crimson like blood, indicating Li Yao had suffered an 'irreversible, chronic injury'!
Yet Li Yao did not stop even for a moment.
Li Yao kicked right at Zhao Tianchong's lower abdomen and from the subsequent recoil, Li Yao was swept away by a couple dozen meters and crashed a few times on the ground before finally crashing into the jungle; following which, he disappeared.
When the smoke dissipated...
The remaining hundred or so hunters gawked at each other. They were rendered speechless.
From the revelation of Li Yao's identity to his disappearance in the jungle, only half a minute had passed.
Nonetheless, a lot more than a dozen contestants had already fainted from the electric shock; leaving their "immobile body" behind.
"It was the jade chips!" Zhao Tianchong said while grimacing in anger, "The hundred jade chips he had intentionally released were not only false, they also had crystal bombs hidden inside. No, to be precise, those things are crystal bombs crafted in the form of jade chips to be exact!"
Wiping the cold sweat, Lu Tieshan muttered:
"I should have realized it already. When we were in Verdant Tarn City, this guy was superbly playing with the mini-crystal bombs. Crafting some crystal bombs in the form of jade chips would be really easy for him!"
The two looked at each other. Their hearts had been gripped by a lingering fear.
Fortunately, Zhao Tianchong's keen intuition had quickly discovered Li Yao's identity.
If he had infiltrated deep within and reached the latter part of the canyon, perhaps he may have the opportunity to break through just by relying on the chaos created by the jade chip bombs alone.
Lu Tieshan let out a long sigh:
"Fortunately, luck was on our side. No matter how he wracked his brains and schemed, at the end, he had fallen short of success."
"Now, everything is alright. Li Yao has exhausted all his means, and also, he has suffered 'irreversible, chronic injuries' from your sword. In accordance to the rules, any serious injuries apart from having been 'killed within seconds', the injured would lose a majority of his battle force within ten seconds, moreover, he or she would die within half an hour."
"However, just to make sure, we should head to the jungle and search for Li Yao's body. And when we have recovered the real jade chips from him, only then should we engage, lest he takes advantage of some final loopholes. What do you think?"
Zhao Tianchong locked his brow into a frown before gradually shaking his head.
"Something still doesn't sit right with me, I still feel that we have fallen right into Li Yao's trap.
"Previously, all his plots had been going so well, and at the end, he so recklessly tried to breakthrough and also seriously injured by us, isn't that too good to be true?
"Not to mention, his disguise was very likely to be seen through, and the jade chip bombs wouldn't necessarily be on us. If he relied on these two things, that is somewhat risky, right?"
Lu Tieshan was surprised by what Zhao Tianchong said. "It's 2,000 vs 1, of course, he's gonna have to take some risks. Furthermore, now that he is seriously injured, he is simply unable to escape from us. Do you really think that he still has some tricks up his sleeve?"
Zhao Tianchong shook his head and looked confused. "Honestly, I don't know. All I have is a faint premonition as if he intentionally appeared and forcefully tried to break through as well as got seriously injured all to goad us into hunting him."
"However, he only has half an hour to live, and also lost his battle force. Even if we left our nests, what can he do? As long as there are three to five people guarding the canyon, he cannot break through!"
"Just a moment ago, when the jade chip bombs exploded, there was too much smoke, the smoke had permeated all around, maybe, just maybe he has done some underhanded trick at that time!"
"Search, quick! Search every inch of the places Li Yao ran through carefully. Check whether he has performed some tricks or left something behind!"
Zhao Tianchong burst into a roar like he was insane.
Following his shout, a flat and ordinary piece of rock next to the narrow and winding passage rose up and quickly started moving!"
"That's it, cut it!"
Although the "rock" was fast, there were several dozen robust fellows behind it and also the narrow passage at the front was completely blocked.
With a flash of a few beams of sword aura, the "rock" was quickly pierced and soon its camouflage split into pieces, revealing its glittering true form.
It was a modified, remote-controlled miniature model of a flying shuttle!
When the hatch was opened, a jade chip was impressively lying inside!
Finally, Zhao Tianchong heaved a long sigh of relief and sat down on the ground before muttering, "This is Li Yao's ultimate plan!
"From the beginning, he knew we would not engage in a conflict down to the last man."
"He also knew, just the jade chip bombs and a disguise would be insufficient to cut through the two-kilometer-long canyon.
"His plan was to rush into the canyon and set a remote controlled model disguised as a rock, and then get seriously injured, all for luring us out into search his 'body' for the jade chip.
"And although he has suffered 'irreversible, chronic injuries', his war force is at the lowest, and he only has half an hour to live, but the remote controlled model could still get it done.
"In short, it was nothing but 'luring tiger from the mountain'!
"His aim was to lure us again into the jungle and also to reduce our vigilance, let us mistakenly think that as long as there were three or five people guarding the canyon, it would be enough.
"However, three to five people are simply insufficient to watch the two kilometer long canyon, and let's not forget that everyone's focus would be at the front, who would pay attention to a flat and ordinary rock?
"You see, this model has been modified, it's propulsion is quite amazing, if there is no one to intercept it, in at most one minute it would be out of the canyon!
"This is precisely Li Yao's final plan!"