The Daoist Seal - Chapter 7
Selection Tournament for Inner Disciples
The soft glow of the rising sun warmed his body. For the past half month, Jiang Xiaofan sat in a lotus position under the cherry tree. At this moment, he opened his eyes, and streaks of light flashed in his eyes.
“Hehe, you’re awake. Hungry yet?”
A melodious voice resonated. Ye Yuanxue sat on the thickest branch of another tree next to him, beaming a mischievous smile, and casually kicked her petite legs. In her hand was a stick and at the tip was a roasted goose, oily and deliciously tempting.
“Xiao Xue, you didn’t cultivate at all?” He stood up with his green-grey robe swaying to the wind. In truth, he hated this style of wear.
She jumped down from the tree, but before she could speak, the air in the sky unexpectedly vibrated. Colorful lights radiated across the sky and seven figures appeared in midair. They were all elders with grey-white hair, looking just like typical immortals. From above, they swept downward glances across the entire Emperor’s Heaven Sect.
Below, the disciples were alarmed, and their expressions varied. Only the outer disciples carried excitement and anticipation on their faces. The selection tournament for inner disciples was to begin.
Up in the sky, the seven elders extended their right hand. A faint ball of light swirled in their palm and slightly shook. More rays of colorful lights permeated the atmosphere. Suddenly, a large, red-gold martial arena appeared, slowly materializing and landing on the vast open field below.
“Damn, isn’t this a bit too easy?! If the people from Planet Earth saw this, they’d be scared witless!” Looking at this scene, he couldn’t help but sigh in admiration. The universe was full of strange wonders.
The arena was approximately three thousand meters in width, one-third meter in height, and divided into seven platforms. It created a thundering sound and strong winds on the ground, causing many of the disciples’ hair to blow wildly.
“This is a freestyle battle tournament with seven platforms. The last seven standing will be the victors.” The Emperor’s Heaven Sect’s elder’s voice was clear and brisk. After he had spoken, he stepped back and quietly stood with the rest, scanning at the disciples.
The tournament was neither large-scale nor small-scale. Not only were there outer disciples, but there were also a good number of inner disciples present. Yet, the scene was a quiet one. No one wanted to be the first.
Those who could pass the first selection trial of the Emperor’s Heaven Sect were, for certain, not ordinary people. Within them were a considerable number of those with prominent backgrounds. As such, these disciples were no cowards. The first person who stood up leaped to one of the platforms.
With the first person up, there would naturally be a second. Not long after, battles had already been initiated on the seven platforms. Many types of martial and cultivation techniques of all levels were used. It was dazzling. From time to time, loud cheers could be heard.
“When are you going up?” Ye Yuanxue asked Jiang Xiaofan.
“Heh, of course the later, the better. I need to conserve my strength. Besides, looking at those people fight is entertaining enough,” calmly replied Jiang Xiaofan. Indeed, the skin on his face was thicker than a city’s wall.
“Such an interesting guy. Anyway, I’m going. As for you, don’t bother. This place isn’t right for you.”
Ye Yuanxue impishly smiled and headed to a platform, one specifically for female cultivators. The males instinctively didn’t go there.
The battles on the seven platforms were heating up. Many from the crowd began to chatter.
“I wonder what rewards will be given. I heard that there’s something extraordinary, maybe one of them being a spirit-ranked weapon.”
“Spirit weapon! It can’t be!” Another onlooker gasped. “Looks like they’re heavily investing in this year’s new disciples.”
“Of course. Supposedly, this year’s group of outer disciples has lots of potentials. The sect is going to value them even more. However, there are only seven prizes. I just wonder which seven people will get them.”
“Last time, there was a crazy guy called Jiang Xiaofan. He should be able to get into the top seven. He’s a dark horse after all. It’s evident that, after he beat up Zhu Xidao’s cousin, he’s insanely strong and vicious.”
“You never know. Many other strong ones exist here. It’s just that they didn’t have a chance to show off yet. Besides, the guy whom you mentioned had offended Zhu Youwei. Whether he can survive in the tournament or not is difficult to say.”
While the outer disciples whispered away, Jiang Xiaofan crouched in a corner with a green stalk of wild grass dangling from his mouth. From time to time, he glanced at the nearby female cultivators. Those who noticed him were rendered speechless. He was the epitome of a punk.
“Is Jiang Xiaofan here? I wish for Jiang Xiaofan to come up.” On the first platform, a green-robed man had already defeated many challengers. His expression carried a gentle smile. He had a scholarly air which exuded the feeling of affinity for him.
“Where is Jiang Xiaofan? I want to challenge you. Will you come up?” On the second platform, another voice sounded. He was a white-robed youth with tall stature. His steps were firm and powerful. Judging solely by his posture, this person seemed to be quite formidable.
What followed after left the crowd wide-eyed and jaws agape. Other than for the female-only platform, all six challengers from each platform had extended their battle invitation to Jiang Xiaofan.
“What’s up with these guys? Why do they all want to fight Jiang Xiaofan?” Many onlookers voiced their curiosity.
“Now that you mention it, who’s Jiang Xiaofan? Is he very famous? How come all six of them singled him out?”
“Psh, old news. How can you not know that tough guy?”
“So who is he then? A well-known figure?”
“He’s not just famous! He’s super famous! A month ago, Jiang Xiaofan beat Zhu Xidao’s cousin, Zhu Youwei, until he fell unconscious. Tell me, how can Jiang Xiaofan not be renowned after that?”
“Shit! Seriously?! That’s too savage!”
Perhaps not everyone knew of Zhu Youwei, but there was no one within the Emperor’s Heaven Sect who didn’t know of Zhu Xidao. He was the first person to become a core disciple. Not to mention, he was rumored to have another identity, making the sect leader and elders place great importance on him.
The fact that his elder cousin was beaten was enough to make Jiang Xiaofan infamous.
Silence settled in. No one else came forth. The remaining six all had cultivation skills beyond imagination. They weren’t people whom an ordinary person could simply challenge. They quietly stood on the platforms, but the aura of strength projected by them caused many outer disciples to hesitate from going up.
“These six are pretty good, much stronger than those from the past. They’re worth nurturing,” stated one of the elders.”
“True. This is a world where many geniuses of phenomenal talents are being born. It’s destined to be a bright and promising new era.” The rest of the elders nodded their heads in agreement.
From the corner, Jiang Xiaofan was slightly taken aback. These six all pointed him out, prompting him to fight and giving him a lot of credit. Still, he also knew that he needed to go up on the arena now because there was nobody else willing to battle.
He stood up, dusted his back, and walked towards the fourth platform. He chose this one because he thought that the challenger was really rude towards him. The challenger’s tone was arrogant and condescending when he called out Jiang Xiaofan’s name.
Seeing him walk towards the fourth platform, the others looked a bit disappointed. Nevertheless, they all returned Jiang Xiaofan a smile. Modest as he was, Jiang Xiaofan courteously reciprocated.
“So you’re that arrogant guy with no regard for the sect’s rules, Jiang Xiaofan, also the one who beat up Zhu Gongzi’s cousin. Absolutely barbaric! Today, I’ll make you pay for what you did and teach you the lesson of what ‘mountains beyond mountains and people beyond people’ mean.” This youth donned a gold-green Daoist robe. He had a masculine bearing. His eyes were keen like a tiger’s, now eyeing sharply at Jiang Xiaofan.
His name was Jin Mohao, and his strength was impressive. He had already been up on the platform from early on and knocked out each challenger who had come forth. His attacks were ruthless, eliciting fear from many.
“No need to hide it nor tuck it away. Isn’t it just a spirit weapon? What’s the big deal?” Indifferent, Jiang Xiaofan smirked.
Once his words had gotten out, the crowd at the bottom erupted into another debate. The others on the platform all turned to look at them. To bring a spirit weapon into the tournament was sort of like cheating.
The color on Jin Mohao’s face slightly changed, but his tone remained cold. He held his head up, icily stared at Jiang Xiaofan, and proudly responded, “Relax. I just casually carry it on me. One hand alone is enough to defeat you. I have no need of a spirit weapon to pressure you.”
Jin Mohao was extremely arrogant, clearly being condescending. This was an insult to Jiang Xiaofan. The crowd chattered again and started to point fingers at the two on the platform.
What surprised people was that instead of being livid, Jiang Xiaofan was happy about it. He shouted to the crowd below, “You guys heard that! He said he’d take me on with one hand! I didn’t force him! You’re all my witnesses!”
After he had spoken, not only were the spectators shocked, the seven elders up above were as well. They thought that Jiang Xiaofan was some sort of humanoid alien. Correct, he could only be described as that.
“Bring it on then, brother! You’ll have to go easy on me though.”
The color drained from Jin Mohao’s face because after Jiang Xiaofan had spoken, he charged straight at him. Without time to react, Jiang Xiaofan launched a punch at him. His agility overwhelmed him, despite being at the seventh heaven of Micro Realm. Confounded, Jin Mohao was pushed back several meters.
“Ay! Brother Jin, look here. I told you to go easy on me, but I didn’t tell you not to retaliate. You’re too kind!” Jiang Xiaofan raised his arms up and shrugged his shoulders, pretending to be astonished.
The onlookers wanted to laugh but couldn’t, especially the injured cultivators off to the side. At this moment, their eyes bulged. They all lost to Jin Mohao, knowing how strong and fearsome that man was. However, the youth named Jiang pushed him back with one fist. How could they not be shocked?
“You’re courting death!”
His face darkened. He hollered and suddenly increased his speed. With a flash, he lunged at him with extreme speed. Light sparkled from his palm like crystals, and he chopped at Jiang Xiaofan’s neck.
Jin Mohao didn’t use his full power. In his eyes, one chop was enough to take Jiang Xiaofan to the ground. He had never imagined that Jiang Xiaofan would react instantly, taking two steps back and dodging his attack with ease. Jiang Xiaofan then extended his hand and *pah* grabbed his palm.
Caught off guard, Jin Mohao tried to shake him off, but to his dismay, Jiang Xiaofan had an iron grasp on his hand. The radiating pain was unbearable, and no matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t break free. His face was contorted with agony. He then swung his left fist, glowing with silver light, at Jiang Xiaofan’s head.
The unthinkable happened again. Jiang Xiaofan casually grabbed his fist with his other hand. The strength of his grip nearly crushed Jin Mohao’s bones.
“Seriously, you’re being unfair now. Didn’t you say that you’d only use one hand? Hm?” asked Jiang Xiaofan innocently.
The crowd was at a loss for words. They could see that Jiang Xiaofan was playing dumb all along. His true power could only be described as monstrous. On the other side, Ye Yuanxue had already defeated many challengers on the female-only platform. Turning around to see what was going on with Jiang Xiaofan, she got a good look at the scene, placed her hands on her belly, and laughed hysterically.