At this time, the fifth vein realm first seat Huang Sicheng, along with his team, formed the Feiming Secret Formation and struck with an astonishing power. Golden light dots turned into wind and blew towards Lu Sheng with a large roar.
Within this golden stream of air, faintly discernible gigantic symbols would shine from time to time.
"So this is the Sun Genesis Sect's Feiming Secret Formation? Nicely done! After you used your conversation to restrain Lu Sheng, you brought out everyone's power and struck him together," said Ice Valley's Li Xiuying coldly.
"Senior Apprentice Sister, in a situation like this, why don't we help the Prime Devil Sect? After all, Brother Lu has an astonishing strength and could easily ally with us later. We could even get ranked higher in the end." Yue Shengya seized the opportunity and stepped closer to make a suggestion in a low voice.
"It's too late now. I also had this idea, but once the Feiming Secret Formation has been activated, anyone who tries to strike it will be countered with a violent explosion. Nobody here has the confidence nor the ability to take that head-on," said Li Xiuying while shaking her head.
Meanwhile, the people of the Alternate Cave Sect were gnashing their teeth in anger while watching the match. Obviously, they hoped that Lu Sheng would be unable to cope with it.
The bright golden wind blew straight towards Lu Sheng's face.
"Interesting. So this secret art combines the black membrane and some sort of metal powder. When used, the powder is sprinkled out using the power from the black membraneit's quite similar to stuff like poisonous fog," Lu Sheng said, marveling at the art. This move was quite ingenious indeed.
He stretched out his right hand, manipulated some Devil Qi to cover his palm, and suddenly grabbed a stone pillar from the main temple gate off to the the side.
A seven, eight meter long and over half a meter thick giant stone pillar was torn out of the ground with a single pull of his hand.
Lu Sheng swung the pillar around in a circle, causing the heavy stone pillar to whistle in the wind loudly and even making the entire Grace Garden tremble slightly.
Each of the sect members present was shocked by this seemingly impossible scene.
"Bring it on, take my"
"Wait a moment! We forfeit!!!" Huang Sicheng shouted loudly as he jumped out of the way before Lu Sheng could even finish his sentence, his face pale.
All four of them ran away, afraid of getting smashed by the pillar in Lu Sheng's hold. If they did get hit, not even a corpse would be left.
It was no joke. This pillar easily weighed in tens of thousands of jin, yet it kept on whistling as it tore through the air when brandished by Lu Shengwith those two things added together, one glance was enough to realize its tremendous power.
Considering all those, the impact's force would have reached hundreds of thousands of jin... who would feel confident in their place? Only a ghost would be able to take such a heavy blow.
Lu Sheng set the pillar down, creating a deep impression in the stone slabs on the ground. Gravel and small pieces of stone scattered everywhere.
The golden light dots had also scattered by now. Huang Sicheng and his group forfeited before the wind could reach him.
Lu Sheng looked disappointed. To think that the opponent didn't even have the courage to try! What a pity, just as he'd got a little bit interested.
"Brother Lu is very strong. I have no hard feelings," Huang Sicheng said reluctantly. "The Sun Genesis Sect admits defeat."
Because the four of them challenged Lu Sheng together, when they lost, it meant the Prime Devil Sect won four challenges at once.
The Prime Devil Sect's He Xiangzi risked her life earlier to win a match, and then, Lu Sheng completely suppressed the Yellow Sand Sword School, thus they won two matches aside from Lu Sheng's initial victory.
And now, with an additional four victories Huang Sicheng came to deliver them...
Seven wins in total. If Lu Sheng decided to challenge him and beat him and the other strong people into a pulp, then the Sun Genesis Sect wouldn't even be able to hope to raise their rank in the future...
When Huang Sicheng thought about all this, he voluntarily cupped his fists and said, "Since my Sun Genesis Sect lost here, maybe all of us here should just hand over our remaining challenges to Brother Lu. Given his strength, there's no need to worry about everyone being unconvinced. If we do that, our region's rankings will have been determined."
Ice Valley's Li Xiuying hesitated for a moment. "I agree."
The people of the Yellow Sand Sword School looked helpless, and could only remain silent. There was a short commotion among the people of the Alternate Cave Sect, but they also ended up agreeing to the suggestion.
And just like this, the entire region's rankings were determined.
In the first place was Lu Sheng and his Prime Devil Sect, next was the Sun Genesis Sect, followed by the Ice Valley, and lastly the Yellow Sand Sword School and the Alternate Cave Sect.
Lu Sheng was very satisfied with this. He knew that the other sects agreed to this suggestion because they were afraid of him using the right to challenge to cripple the strongest members of the large sects. In any case, both the Yellow Sand Sword School and the Alternate Cave Sect were already crippled now, and the top three places were already in the grasp of the other three sects.
With that taken care of, Huang Sicheng called the hidden Taoists who were Heaven Lotus Sect's record keepers and had them write down the freshly established results. And thus, everything was concluded.
After determining their ranks and getting them recorded, the now hopeless Yellow Sand Sword School and the Alternate Cave Sect left one after another. This left the remaining three sects; due to Huang Sicheng's suggestion, they had remained at the Prime Devil Sect's place to discuss their course of action in the next round.
Lu Sheng also agreed to this.
The elites of three large sects all stayed behind and gathered around next to the the stone pillar that Lu Sheng had pulled out earlier and sat there.
Huang Sicheng, Zhao Zhao, Li Xiuying, Yue Shengya, and even Lu Sheng and He Xiangzi were all there.
They were precisely the decision makers in those several big sects.
The inside of the Grace Garden was cold, with dust and fallen leaves being blown everywhere.
The six didn't think that sitting on the ground like this was dirty. After all, with the black membrane between the ground and them, with just a light shake, all the dust would be shaken off.
"To tell the truth, that Feiming Secret Formation that we used against Brother Lu earlier was something that we prepared secretly to use against another region's pinnacle expert. We never would have thought..." Huang Sicheng said as he started the discussion, smiling bitterly.
"Another region's expert... Brother Huang, could it be you mean Peacock Mountain's Silver Peacock, Shu Xian?" interjected Li Xiuyang.
"She's only one of the many. This time, Tree Rock Garden's Yuan Ba , Shen Youyou... all are extremely strong opponents. Last time, I had just made it out of the region before being defeated by Shen Youyou within three moves. The only choice was to admit defeat," Huang Sicheng said with a sigh. "But this time we have Brother Lu. With Brother Lu's strength, as long as we have a good plan, we'll definitely get a good place in the ranking."
Upon mentioning Lu Sheng, he got a little excited as well. The more he thought about it, the wiser his decision to admit defeat seemed to him.
If he really fought Lu Sheng one on one, with Lu Sheng's abnormally frightening physique, apart from getting injured and forced to surrender, he wouldn't be able to do anything else.
But look, now, he had turned an enemy into a friend. He could make the other first seats face Lu Sheng's terrifying strength and make them experience what he and his sect members had felt firsthand.
Once he thought about this, he subconsciously got excited.
"But what's the plan?" Li Xiuying asked, interested.
"It'll depends on whether Brother Lu is willing to help us with this or not." Huang Sicheng looked towards Lu Sheng.
Lu Sheng looked at them. Everyone was staring at him hopefully.
He, too, looked at them, and smiled.
Everyone's smiles froze on their faces.
"Although we've left the region and our challenges reset so we each can issue five of them again, I still can only challenge five people at most, and I can't even be sure I'll win. Under such circumstances, whatever plan you guys will have little significance," Lu Sheng said without a care. "So I can't help you."
Technically, he had no reason to help these two sects at all. Who did Huang Sicheng think he was? He was neither family nor kin; also, they were exchanging ruthless attacks just a while ago, yet now that he couldn't win, he immediately gave up and even wanted Lu Sheng to help them? Nonsense.
Lu Sheng's goal wasn't to attract attention, but to solidify his sect's rank and make sure it wasn't kicked out of the Hundred Lineages because of its rank being too low. He had already accomplished that goal by now. He only needed to make it past the rest of the rounds; why would he get himself into more trouble?
Both Huang Sicheng and Li Xiuying didn't know what to do.
"If so okay, since Brother Lu is unwilling, I'll take my leave." Huang Sicheng paused for a while, then stood up and left.
Li Xiuying and Yue Shengya, both from the Ice Valley, stayed. Li Xiuying looked at Lu Sheng closely.
"If Brother Lu is willing to help me, I'm willing to give you a small Red Sun Iron Mine in exchange for Brother Lu fighting for me once," Li Xiuying said, her tone and expression solemn.
Red Sun Iron Mine?
Lu Sheng didn't know what that was, but seeing both Yue Shengya's and He Xiangzi's expressions, he knew this thing had to be very expensive. And if it was very expensive even to a sect made up of those with bloodlines, then it should be of help to the Prime Devil Sect.
"Let me get this clear, I just have great strength and speed, but I'm not really good at the secret arts. If I meet a powerful opponent, I wouldn't be able to defend against their black membrane," Lu Sheng reminded.
"I know." Li Xiuying nodded.
If he only had strength and speed, the most he could do was destroy his opponent's body a few times, but to a stronger person at a level above five veins, a broken arm or leg could be healed quickly with no impact on their fighting capability. As long as their bloodline wasn't too weak, they could recover almost immediately.
And as for the black membrane of such experts, not only was it extremely poisonous, it also healed them almost instantly. If Lu Sheng didn't destroy their black membrane, they would recover from serious injuries in a few breaths. And Lu Sheng, having only his body, wouldn't be able to defend against the poison.
"It's okay. When the time comes, I just need Brother Lu to lend me a hand. That will be enough," Li Xiuying said quietly. "And so, I'll take my leave." She stood up and left.
Yue Shengya winked at Lu Sheng, smiled, and followed her senior sister apprentice.
Lu Sheng was confused, but He Xiangzi explained what was going on with a few succinct words. "Junior Brother Apprentice, that girl from the Ice Valley seems to like you."
"Never mind her, I'm already married," Lu Sheng said casually.
To be honest, all he did was use the normal strength he had in his Yin form. If he transformed into his Yang form, his strength would increase by several folds. And if he went into his Yin Yang Integration Mode, both his strength and speed would increase by far more. Not to mention if he ignited his liquefied Qi.
"A Red Sun Iron Mine I didn't know that once you become strong, money comes along so easily," He Xiangzi said dejectedly.
Lu Sheng couldn't think of anything to say to comfort her.
After the two lay down to rest, they cultivated their secret arts like normal in the Grace Garden the next morning. When late afternoon came, a long, resonating chime sounded.
The first round of challenges inside respective regions had ended.
Lu Sheng and He Xiangzi opened their door and walked out of the Grace Garden, only to see a group of Taoists walking towards them from a distance.
"Senior Brothers and Sisters who won, please proceed to the Sky Temple. We're here to lead the way," one of the Taoists called out.
Lu Sheng and He Xiangzi, Huang Sicheng and his group, and Li Xiuying and the others all gathered together and followed the Taoist towards the west side of the Jasper Palace.
The west side contained a well maintained garden. Behind the garden was a gray square with a huge stone statue of a tortoise lying in the middle.
On the square, the Taoists led sects to tables and chairs arranged for them one by one. It seemed like this meeting was going to be completely outside.
Yue Shengya was standing besides Lu Sheng, and she reminded him quietly, "Brother Lu, my senior apprentice sister said to tell you to challenge the second second seat of Peacock Mountain, Bai Qingdang. With your strength, you shouldn't have problems."
"Bai Qingdang?" Lu Sheng was about to nod when a gust of strong wind blew past them.
This wind was very odd. It didn't have the softness of a regular wind, but instead cut one's skin repeatedly like a slashing blade.
Lu Sheng lifted his head and looked towards the origin of the wind. On the other end of the square stood a girl with white hair.
This girl had a female body but a male face. Behind her body, seven huge white feathers floated, one of them glowing like a gem. The wind obviously came from her.
"This level it's more than I expected" Lu Sheng squinted a bit. Different from other people, he could pretty much tell what level this woman was at with a glance.
"Shuxian, what the heck? You want to challenge all of us at once right after breaking through?!" a tall, slender man demanded as he stood up. A belt of throwing knives was tied around his waist.
"That's okay as well, you can come all at once. That will save me a lot of time," the white-headed woman said indifferently.
"Does Peacock Mountain want to become enemies with everyone in the lower three grades?"
"Isn't Senior Apprentice Sister Shu too overbearing?"
The expressions of all the first seats present changed.
Everyone here was an expert who emerged from the five big regions, so all them put together had quite the momentum.
 TL/N: A *jin* is equal to half a kilogram, or a *gongjin* in Chinese. By taking away the *gong* part of *gongjin*, it becomes half of the measurement. In this same way, a *gongli* (kilometer) becomes half a kilometer as a *li*. Half a kilogram is equivalent to approximately 1.10 lbs.
 ED/N: A very strange... name... which we were unable to decipher. There are three possibilities: those are two people, it's a place name followed by short surname+name (I chose this one tentatively not to delay the chapter), or author made some typo/mistake. Anyway, it might be changed in the future.