Ten days later, Chu Li had just finished his cultivation and was having a meal. Afterward, he went over to the Martial Arts Hall with Xue Ling.
Chu Li wanted to go to the Martial Arts Hall to take a look at the ancient collections and check for information on the Heavenly Demonic Power.
He was allowed access to the ancient library which contained quite a few rare items; some of them were records of shocking world history, like how the Spirit Beasts once ravaged the world. Less than one in ten humans had survived - The human race had been driven to the brink of extinction.
Xue Ling steered the small boat and they started moving slowly.
"Master, are you really not going to punish Jing Zhixue?"
Chu Li stood at the bow of the boat with his hands folded behind his back. His white robe flapped chaotically in the wind. He did not reply.
"Is it because there is someone who is stopping you from doing so?" Xue Ling tilted her head and looked at him.
From what she knew, Chu Li was not that forgiving, he would not just smile and let things like this pass.
More than ten days had passed, and yet, Chu Li had not made a move. Without a doubt, there was someone stopping him.
"Is it Master Xiao Tieying? He thirsts for more talent. He must be afraid that you'll do something to Jing Zhixue, which would no doubt affect him!" Xue Ling scoffed and pouted her lips.
Finally, Chu Li replied, "It's not Master Xiao Tieying."
"Then who is it? Wait, Master, you still haven't met Lady Xiao Shi," Xue Ling asked before suddenly realizing something.
"Hmm, I am not in a hurry," said Chu Li.
"Why don't you go and meet Lady Xiao Shi?" Xue Ling's eyes widened as she stared at him.
Chu Li replied in a cold tone, "Keep your eyes in front of you!"
Xue Ling did not stop. She asked once more, "Is it because you argued with Lady Xiao Shi?"
"You really have a strong imagination. In any case, we've arrived!" Chu Li sighed.
The boat slowly reached the shore.
The two of them arrived at the training hall of the Martial Arts Hall. After entering, they walked along the side of the hall.
Having waited miserably in the crowd for days, Jing Zhixue's eyes lit up. He approached Chu Li in large strides and started laughing from afar. "What a coincidence, Chief Chu!"
Chu Li stopped walking, Xue Ling followed suit. She glared at the arrogant Jing Zhixue; how could this bastard be so arrogant.
Jing Zhixue walked toward them with a large smile on his face. There was a shapeless inner energy surrounding him that was pushing away the Protectors that were in his way, causing them to glare at him angrily.
They all turned their heads intending to scold him. However, as soon as they saw that it was the Grandmaster and a High Official of the Public House, they bit their tongues.
Chu Liu quietly sized him up and calmly asked, "High Official Jing, is there anything you would like to enlighten me about?"
"Hehe, I dare not do so. How could I dare to talk about education in front of Chief Chu? I was just hoping to have a practice match with you, dear sir." Jing Zhixue smiled.
"Practice?" Chu Li forced a smile when he heard this.
Jing Zhixue smiled back as he continued, "I personally think that martial arts are the foundation to everything. If one does not have strong enough martial arts skills, then one does not have a stable foundation and will crumble when tasked with important duties."
"Hmm, and?" said Chu Li.
Everyone nearby had started to gather around them.
Jing Zhixue felt his confidence growing and elaborated enthusiastically, "I heard that Chief Chu has profound martial arts skills, with a title as the youth champion. I am itching to have a round against you and experience the skills of the youth champion for myself!"
The crowd collectively grit their teeth when they heard this. Goddammit, Chu Li is merely an Innate Master while you are already a Grandmaster and a High Official. Why are you asking for a fight?
Chu Li sized him up and smiled. "You think that being a Grandmaster, you can become a Rank 2 Protector and take over my seat, am I right?"
"Heh… I have never once thought of that, I just wanted to witness your skill for myself, Chief Chu." Jing Zhixue hesitated for a moment and shook his head aggressively.
Jing Zhixue understood that if he said yes, he would be laughed at by the crowd for his wishful thinking. Zhao Qingshan and the other Grandmasters were all powerful, a notch above his level. But yet, none of them had high positions, they were all just High Officials.
However, this guy with the surname Chu truly had a forked tongue. Instead of martial arts, he had used his wit to climb to his current position, which was a reason to respect him even more.
Chu Li raised his voice, "Elder Zhao!"
"I'm here! Is there anything I can do for you, Chief Chu?" Zhao Qingshan was standing at the edge of the crowd. He perked up when he heard his name being called.
"Take him down!" Chu Li pointed at Jing Zhixue.
Jing Zhixue was startled, he then smiled and asked, "Take me down? Chief Chu, stop joking! I just want to practice, it is not a crime, is it?"
Zhao Qingshan glided across the heads of the crowd and rushed towards Jing Zhixue.
Everyone quickly took a step back to give them more space. All of them had their eyes wide open and became extremely excited. This was a battle between Grandmasters – truly a rare occasion!
Jing Zhixue raised his voice, "Chief Chu, what do you mean by this?"
Chu Li looked at him and remained silent.
Zhao Qingshan pressed his palms down. "Woosh!" the sound of rushing wind could be heard as a faintly visible palm print rushed towards Jing Zhixue.
Jing Zhixue swerved his body to avoid it as he raised his voice, "Chief Chu, you are seizing this opportunity to exact revenge on private matters - it is an abuse of power! I am a High Official of the Public House and I am going to report this to Master Xiao Tieying to punish you for your crimes!"
Chu Li ignored him and continued, "Elder Zhao!"
Zhao Qingshan nodded. The aura around him instantly burst out like a fierce beast descending to earth. He violently rushed towards Jing Zhixue with the intention of engaging in close quarters combat with him.
Jing Zhixue was still young and a level below Zhao Qingshan. Now that Zhao Qingshan was going all in, he could not risk wasting his time by trying to talk him into standing down; he could only raise his fists to try and fight back.
Palms and fists clashed repeatedly, but eventually, it was obvious that Jing Zhixue was at a disadvantage.
He clenched his teeth and shouted out loud as he swung his fists in a fit of rage, "Chu Li, you are such a narrow-minded person. I only beat up one of your dogs, and you're not letting me go. How can you be so petty? You are a treacherous man!"
Chu Li remained silent as he was sizing up the two as they battled.
"Chu Li is this how your Public House treats their High Official?! From now on, as long as you, Chu Li are still here, don't ever expect any Grandmaster to work for the High Duke's Public House!"
Still no reply.
"Chu Li, don't pretend to be mute, have you no shame? Everyone is going to look down and make fun of you for this!"
Chu Li still said nothing.
"Ha!" Zhao Qingshan seized the opportunity to shout. Both of his palms increased in size and slammed into Jing Zhixue's chest.
"Bam!" Jing Zhixue flew away with his body tilted and his legs digging into the ground like a piece of rock.
He spat out a mouthful of blood, then, used the momentum from Zhao Qingshan's blow to try and escape. Zhao Qingshan could not keep up with him.
Xue Ling started to panic, she pulled on Chu Li's sleeve. "Master!"
Jing Zhixue wanted to hijack the small boat to escape!
"Bam!" a shadow suddenly flashed from beside the lake before hitting the side of Jing Zhixue.
Jing Zhixue fell straight back into the Training Hall. Blood gushed from the corner of his lips and his face was deathly pale. He wanted to get up but had no energy to do so.
That light strike from that palm technique was a lot stronger than Zhao Qingshan's blows. The crowd stared at the person who had dealt the blow. It was Linquan.
This man had always followed Master Xiao Tieying, like a shadow. He was usually extremely humble, so much so that he would usually be ignored by people. But with this blow, Linquan made everyone realize that he was, in fact, a hidden master.
Linquan walked towards Chu Li and made a closed fist salute. "Chief Chu, I have brought the two men here!"
"Thank you for your effort, Elder Lin. Bring them here. I need to fully convince Brother Jing!" Chu Li said.
"Yes." Lin Quan smiled and nodded his head.
He moved swiftly to the boat and carried two men out. One of them was a young man while the other was middle-aged.
The two men were thrown in front of Jing Zhixue. Their acupuncture points had been sealed; they were stiff and could not move.
Chu Li crossed his hands behind his back and paced forward. He looked at Jing Zhixue who was on the floor, glaring at him with hatred. "Brother Jing, do you really think that you could sneak into the Public House?"
"Chu Li, you are trying to frame me! I will look for Master Xiao Tieying to clear my name!" Jing Zhixue shouted angrily.
Jing Zhixue already knew that the situation had turned sour for him when he saw the two men. He had been exposed.