Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
Many were impressed, hearing Lu Chuan’s words. It was indeed rare for someone with Lu Chuan’s status and talents to be so humble. Furthermore, he even claimed to be inferior to that other person who achieved so much fame in last year’s Battle of Empty Realm.
There was a name that spread far and wide after last year’s Battle of Empty Realm. It was the name of their opponent, and he was but a sage. It was extremely rare for a foreign name to be so well known in Emperor Xia’s Realm. Even Lu Chuan, the personal student of Dali Dynasty’s imperial advisor, had to acknowledge how extraordinary that other person was, even though a younger brother-in-training of Lu Chuan had perished in that Battle of Empty Realm. Yuan Jin, yet another student of the imperial advisor died in that Battle of Empty Realm.
“While that person from Emperor Xia’s Realm was a deciding factor of the outcome of the Battle of the Empty Realm, he had only been able to win due to having the element of surprise. No one knew he was able to enthrall the demonic beasts, and that cost Demon Peacock Emperor Realm’s place in that battle. Those from Emperor Xia’s Realm even used them, and it all seemed just too convenient.” Another prince of Dali at Li You’s side said, “If you, sir, were of the same era as him and had been able to fight him on the same battlefield, you would have won.”
Everyone naturally knew the one they were talking about was none other than Ye Futian. There had been an extraordinary figure that appeared out of nowhere in the ranks of Emperor Xia’s Realm. He single-handedly acted as the key to Emperor Xia’s Realm’s victory in emerging victorious in the Battle of Empty Realm. He had also joined hands with Xia Qingyuan and killed Yuan Jin, causing severe casualties to the mighty ones of Emperor Li’s Realm at the same time.
“There are no ‘ifs’ in the world, only results. If he had been able to do that much, then there is no doubt that he performed excellently. Despite being of opposing sides, I acknowledge his prowess. I would only be able to defeat him should we cross paths in future battles,” Lu Chuan replied calmly, elaborating on his thoughts instead of riding on that prince’s words simply because it was the prince who lauded him.
“You do have a solid point, sir.” That prince nodded with a smile and did not mind at all.
“King Li, have the cultivators of the Nine Counties arrived at Liwang City?” Lu Chuan did not dwell on the topic and asked King Li instead.
“They are all here,” King Li nodded.
“Well then, please see to the arrangements. There are many forces from the Upper Worlds coming this time, and I hope they all return with something,” Lu Chuan said.
Ye Futian did not know that he was mentioned by the ones attending the banquet in King Li’s Palace. He did not know of Lu Chuan, but he heard of some things about the Battle of the Empty Realm from ten years ago.
Ye Futian was in a palace which served as an inn of sorts in Liwang City for the ones from the Nine Counties. Dali Dynasty was a force that reigned all over Emperor Li’s Realm. King Li was in charge of the Lower Worlds, and all of the County Kings of the Nine Counties were subordinate to him, and they, in turn, ruled over the holy lands in their respective counties.
At that moment, the mighty ones from the Nine Counties gathered at Liwang City, and they had their palaces to serve as their accommodations. Those palaces were not connected, as they were scattered throughout different corners outside of King Li’s Palace.
At that moment in the County of Yan’s palace, Ye Futian was sitting alone in a compound training. Despite being very boisterous with his words outside, he nonetheless knew where his way of the sword stood. All that talk about him having spent decades studying and perfecting his art of the sword was work that he had been doing for several months. But then again, he was confident that due to his extensive training throughout the years, he would nonetheless be able to reign supreme below the Saint Plane in Dali, wielding only the sword, despite having only practicing sword arts for months.
Footsteps sounded at that moment. Ye Futian, who was training, dispelled the sword will coursing about him. He opened his eyes and saw a dashing silhouette walking by. It was none other than Huanxue, but she was standing far away outside the compound. She looked at him and said, “The swordsmen from all holy lands were exchanging thoughts and arts at the arena. My father told me to come fetch you.” She turned around and left right away after delivering her message, not caring if Ye Futian bothered showing up or not.
“Exchanging arts of swords, huh?” Ye Futian was hardly interested. But since the Sword Saint of Fierce Wind was there, he deemed it necessary to have a look. He rose and left. By the time he arrived at the arena, many swordsmen from holy lands were present, but all of them looked nonchalant. Even the Sword Saint of Fierce Wind was standing around, looking at what was taking place quietly at the side.
Swordsmen from all of the holy lands verified their arts with each other in the vast arena. However, the exchange was hardly an official one, and they sparred for a bit to get a grasp of the level of the other party’s training, as well as that of their own. But then again, they were also those who took such sparring and exchanges very seriously.
“You have been practicing with your sword?” the Sword Saint of Fierce Wind turned around and asked Ye Futian, who came to his side, with a smile.
“Yeah.” Ye Futian nodded.
The Sword Saint of Fierce Wind looked somewhat satisfied. Despite being arrogant and unbridled due to his supreme talents, the young man seemed to be very diligent in the study of the sword. His mind of the sword was definitely very pure. The probability of such swordsmen making it to sainthood was very high.
“It’s a good thing to see how others are doing with their arts of the sword,” the Sword Saint of Fierce Wind quipped.
At that moment, the two top-notch figures from the Crimson Phoenix Sword Clan—Chi Xiao and Chi Yao—were standing at the arena. They were siblings; an elder brother and a younger sister. They were practicing their arts of the sword with others. Their prowess with the sword was very powerful. Crimson shimmer flashed when their swords were drawn, looking incredibly sharp. They turned to look at the crowd when they stopped fighting. Chi Yao took notice of Ye Futian, who was walking in their direction.
“Chi Yao of the Crimson Phoenix Sword Clan. Would you mind sparring with me, Seventh Swordsman?” Chi Yao asked Ye Futian across the distance. Many looked at Ye Futian. The Sword Saint of Fierce Wind claimed that Ye Futian had beaten Nie Yun with a single sword attack, and she had no idea how much of it was made up. There was at least no doubt that he had beaten Nie Yun, and he was probably far more powerful than Nie Yun was. Furthermore, Ye Futian had been very boisterous with his words, claiming that there was hardly anyone who could beat him at the art of swords. She had already wanted to test that figure out. He claimed to be peerless in his way of the sword at the County of Yan. She wanted to know where she stood.
Chi Yao was not the only one. In truth, swordsmen from the holy lands of the County of Yan were also very curious about how capable the Seventh Swordsman was.
“My sword isn’t used for sparring.” Ye Futian looked at Chi Yao and said, “Find someone else instead.”
“I have tested my prowess against the swordsmen of holy lands last year,” Chi Yao replied. The topmost handful of the swordsmen had fought at an event in the County of Yan in the previous year. Ye Futian would probably be a good opponent, which would have served her well in her training before getting into King Li’s Palace.
“In that case, just wait for the mighty ones from the Nine Counties to show up then,” Ye Futian answered and did not bother to give her any face.
“What harm would there be just to spar for a bit?” another figure said. It was none other than Lin Ya from the Sword Clan of the Storm. He crossed his arms before him and had been looking at Chi Yao, only turning his eyes to look at Ye Futian when he talked.
Ye Futian glanced at Lin Ya and said, “If you test your art out against me, I’m afraid you’ll all end up returning to the County of Yan and begin to train in isolation instead.”
All the others looked at Ye Futian with their mouths agape, feeling speechless. It was indeed just like how he behaved at the County of Yan; he cared for nothing.
“If you do not intend to spar, why are you here? We will fight each other all the same when all cultivators from the Nine Counties meet,” Chi Xiao looked at Ye Futian and said.
“Since when did I say anything about being a part of the fighting between the cultivators of the Nine States?” Ye Futian said as he looked at Chi Xiao. He never thought about it before at all.
“Then, why are you here?” Chi Xiao wore a sarcastic expression as he talked. Dali Dynasty intended to select geniuses to train in the Upper Worlds, and fighting between cultivators would have been a must.
“I’m just here to see if there is anyone worthy of having me drawing my sword,” Ye Futian said. Chi Xiao and Chi Yao both took a good look at Ye Futian and understood that there were people who were beyond reasoning with. Both of them walked out of the arena, and Chi Yao dropped a line, “I look forward to seeing your sword leave its scabbard then.”
Many from the holy lands looked at Ye Futian and found him puzzling. Ye Futian naturally did not wish for any of them to see through him. He left the place not long afterward. Mighty ones from King Li’s Palace sent word at the same time, asking for them to be inside the palace three days later.
The outside of King Li’s Palace was flooded by a massive crowd three days later. Countless mighty ones gathered about, and it was a scene like no other. The gates of the palace opened that day to the public. All cultivators of Dali were permitted to enter the palace and head to designated areas.
At that moment, a group of people arrived by air from outside the palace. The leading figures were all saints and looked extraordinary. They landed outside of King Li’s Palace, and some people came to receive them.
“Mighty ones from County of Xichu are here.” Many were able to identify where those mighty ones came from—County of Xichu.
“Mighty ones from County of Changhe are here as well.” A group of mighty ones appeared in the air, and the entourage looked massive. It looked grand as they entered the palace.
“The ones from County of Dongyang are here too.” Towering sword will was sensed high above. Over 1,000 swordsmen arrived by air, and howling sword will shot through above.
“The swordsmen of County of Yan are here.” Countless eyes turned in that direction. The combined might of the County of Yan enabled them to come to the top three among the Nine Counties. The swordsmen of County of Yan were also extremely renowned. Over half of Dali’s swordsmen emerged from the County of Yan, after all.
Things were extraordinarily solemn and regal within the palace. King Li was sitting on his throne atop the eastern steps. There were mighty ones on every single step below. Those from top forces from Upper Worlds sat at the same corner as he was, casting their gaze at the mighty ones that kept showing up.
“Such grandeur is not something one would often see even King Li’s Palace,” King Li said with a smile. All holy lands from the Nine Counties responded to the call of gathering capable people from King Li’s Palace.
“My lord, we are from County of Xichu.” The County King of Xichu led his mighty ones to pay respects to the throne. There was only one emperor in Dali Dynasty. King Li was only a king.
“Take your seats,” King Li said with a brimming voice. Mighty ones from the Nine Counties all took their seats later. The grandstands were quickly filled by mighty ones from the Nine Counties, surrounding a vast patch of empty ground in the middle. Ye Futian sat among those from the County of Yan. He was hardly noticeable due to being surrounded by a massive crowd. He turned his eyes to where King Li was at the moment. It was said that the event on that day was an order by the imperial advisor of Dali, to gather geniuses of Lower Worlds and send them to Upper Worlds for training. It was unknown which of the Upper World’s top forces had shown up, and Ye Futian naturally hoped that they would have been a lot of them. He saw Lu Chuan right away. Lu Chuan, who was sitting right below King Li, looked extremely dazzling. It was as if one would notice his presence right away, whether one liked it or not.
“Is this guy a prince?” Ye Futian asked himself in secret, but he quickly saw Li You, who had stunning beauty. She was sitting not far away from Lu Chuan, and there were several other youths at her side. Those people even bore some resemblance to King Li, and Ye Futian only understood right there and then that they were the princes and princesses of the king. If Lu Chuan were to be able to sit at their side, then there was only one possibility—he was from the royal palace of Dali Dynasty from the Upper Worlds.