(Random Phoenix Sect's Master POV)
My name is Bai Chi, a Master of the Phoenix Sect.
I was known as a prodigy back in my time. Entering the Sect at only twelve years old, becoming an Outer Core Practitioner at fourteen and an Inner Core Practitioner at twenty.
I was then elevated to Elite at twenty five and finally breaking through to Master at fifty.
I was supposed to be the youngest Practitioner to be granted the rank of Master, the genius prodigy of the Earthen Plane.
But an upstart just had to show up out of nowhere during the Festival two years ago, taking that spot away from me! It was a slap to my face out of nowhere!
A Master at age twenty?! That guy can't be anything but a hack! He must be a liar! A cheater! There's no way some guy can reach that level so easily since even I had to claw my way up here!
That was unacceptable!
Phoenix Sect would have been the undisputed strongest because of me! But this nobody came along and elevated the always stuck at fifth place Heaven Sect straight into the limelight! The Heaven Sect definitely doesn't deserve this fortune!
They were only at fifth place because of their Sect's location and age! Just because their founders laid claim to the entire mountain gave them that advantage!
Other than this Master Lin, their other Masters were third rate compared to ours!
When I heard this so called Master Lin was participating in this year's Festival, I had already planned for his downfall.
Days before the Festival, a number of Masters and Elders had met in secret, all of us agreeing that should this upstart Master Lin refuses to leave that insignificant little Sect, we will make sure he is crippled thoroughly.
But what was outside our expectations was that he had already taken in two disciples. Two very, very strong disciples.
They were supposed to be Inner Core Practitioners, but they fought like Masters. Even I could see their overwhelming talents from just that battle alone. Not to mention their otherworldly beauty, I definitely envy that upstart for having them serve him hand and foot!
Why does this guy get all the luck? It's unfair!
After we crippled him, I'll definitely claim them as my own disciples!
All hundred of us gathered on the stage, all prepared to cripple him and make sure he can never become a Practitioner again.
That upstart gave us the come hither gesture.
"Let's start the lesson."
I roared in rage, gathering our Sect's trademark Phoenix Fire in my palms, the others around me doing the same with their own Techniques.
This upstart is smiling at us?!
I'll show you the power of this Cultivation Technique! The power of Phoenix Sk--
"Phoenix Sky Bolt, Waterfall Dragon Dance, Profound Killing Lightning, Vicious Blade, Monkey Steals Peaches. Quite the standard few huh?"
He saw through our Techniques before we even finished casting them?
"Phoenix Sky Bolt!"
I unleashed the flames that had been accumulating in my palms.
"Too late," A voice echoed out from within our midst. "Lesson one, don't let your opponent read your attack unless it's a feint, or you'll be open to counters like so."
A scream, followed by a yell of pain.
Two of the Elders were immediately expelled outside the stage.
I turned my head towards where the scream came from to find that upstart standing there with his hands behind his back.
Our Techniques exploded at where he had been at the start of the fight.
The one closest to him immediately raised his hand and slashed downwards, his arm coated in water that was sharpened into a blade.
"Lesson two, don't trust everything you see."
The hand descended and another scream followed.
The one we had thought to be the upstart suddenly shimmered, his figure disappearing to reveal one of our own standing in his place before being expelled outside the stage.
We looked around frantically for him, wondering if he was masquerading as one of us.
"Lesson three, most people tend not to look up or down in a battle, exploit that fact."
He crashed down from the sky, exploding the area around him with a burst of electricity and sending everyone flying. I landed on my back a distance away with another Elder beside me, our group that had huddled together was now spread out around the stage.
The five people who were directly in the impact zone were immediately sent out.
He turned and looked directly at me, giving me the smile I would never ever forget in my life.
"Lesson four, when outnumbered, divide and conquer."
I felt a shiver down my spine as he disappeared from my view.
I immediately erected a flame barrier around my right arm, lifting it up just in time to block a sword from slashing at my neck.
"Hmm, good battle sense, you'll go far," he complimented before disappearing again.
How dare this guy!
I glanced to my side to see the Elder that had been beside me gone, sitting outside the stage with a blank look on his face.
One of the Dragon Star Sect's Elder stood up, "Everyone! Form a ring! Watch--"
"Lesson five, commanders are prime targets in a battle."
He flicked the Elder on the forehead, causing the elder to combust into flames before being sent outside the stage.
"Eternal Crippling Poison Blow!" A Master from the Viscous Poison Sect shouted, rushing towards him.
The upstart back kicked the Master across the face before letting a gout of flame to envelope the Master, instantly vaporising him and sending him off the stage.
"Lesson six, don't do what he did."
This damn upstart! He's mocking us isn't he?!
"You You YOU ARE COURTING DEATH!" One of the Elders screamed, pulling out one of the poison needles to throw at him.
In response, that guy just lifted his hand, lightning sparking out of his fingers that disintegrated the needles before striking the Elder in the chest and sending him outside.
"Not sure what his problems were but lesson seven, be sneaky when you're trying to do sneak attacks. Like so,"
He disappeared from our view, all of us frantically looking around us to find him. Some of us had the sense to start grouping up together but I remained where I was, afraid that my movement might trigger his attack.
Five more Elders had fallen quietly, we hadn't even known they were gone until they raised cries of confusion outside the stage.
In such a short time, twenty five of us had already fallen and we hadn't even touched a single strand of hair on him. This was beyond humiliating.
"Come out you coward! Or do you not know how to fight openly?!" One of the older Elders shouted.
"Mmm, good taunt," that guy appeared in front of the Elder, barely an arm's breadth away.
"But you had no follow up to your taunt, that's lesson eight by the way."
As soon as those words left his mouth, he had sliced through the Elder's neck with a wind blade, sending the Elder outside the stage.
"Also, lesson nine. When you and your opponents are familiar with the area of battle, don't ever drop your caution towards traps they might have set."
He pointed at his feet.
The ones who had chosen to group up together noticed something glowing at their feet.
That damn upstart managed to inscribe seven Cultivation Techniques on the ground, even correctly predicting where the groups would be!
The Technique caused giant icicles to explode out from the ground, piercing through the Practitioners who were unfortunate enough to stand near them.
All seven icicles covered more than half the stage, normal Practitioners would need half a day to inlay even one of these inscriptions, when did he manage to lay such a trap during the fight?!
No, it can't be That short time frame when he was doing sneak attacks?!
Does he even understand that inscribing Cultivation Techniques on surfaces requires immense concentration and precise control over quarks needed for the Technique?! It takes quite a while to even inscribe one! That's definitely not something that can be done in the heat of battle!
He waved his hand and the icicles disintegrated into dust.
There were only ten of us left. We made sure to spread ourselves out this time.
"Now, that's under a quarter of you left. What else should I teach?" The upstart mused.
"Not yet!" A Master from the Flying Tigers Sect shouted, digging through his pockets to swallow a pill. "Now we'll have the advantage!"
"Oh, a Rage Pill? Didn't think I'll see one here but alright."
He even knows about the hidden secret pills of the Flying Tigers Sect?! I only knew about it because they told us during our meeting to cripple this upstart!
The Master's body swelled, growing to twice his original size. He let out a roar as a frightening amount of energy began gathering between his palms.
Now that this Master is ten times stronger, surely we can turn the tables around right?
The energy that was gathered in his palms was released towards that upstart in an instant, the beam hurtling towards him with blinding speed.
"Lesson ten, temporary power ups are extremely unreliable."
I didn't even see when the upstart had moved, only that he was already in front of the Rage Pill enhanced Master the moment the blast was about to hit him.
That upstart infused his fist with Energy quarks before punching that Master in the gut.
The Flying Tigers Master heaved, all the energy in his body suddenly leaving him like a tidal wave.
With another kick to his forehead, the Master was sent outside the stage.
What kind of bull is this?!
How did he even managed to dispel the Rage Pill's effects just by doing that?!
"Together!" I shouted, there was no way I am going to let him win!
The remaining nine of us rose to our feet, channeling as much power as we could for our next attack.
"Lesson eleven, on the off chance you need to let a potentially annoying enemy escape you, give yourself some insurance in case they come back."
He snapped his fingers.
My right arm began to glow.
An explosion Cultivation Technique.
When did he
That short moment when I blocked his sword!
He managed to put such a complicated Cultivation Technique on me in such a short time without me noticing?!
That's beyond comprehension!
I looked around in a panic, realising all nine of us had similar Cultivation Techniques inscribed somewhere on each of our bodies.
He's a true monster.
He snapped his fingers once more.