“Brother,” Yu Jian called tenderly called as she caressed the face of the young man on the ground.
Nobody knew Feng Jian better than Yu Jian. Whenever she saw him, he was training. Never did she see him playing. When she asked, he brightly replied, “I’d rather spend my time polishing the swordplay Shizun taught me.” She couldn’t fathom his feelings because her fear of Luo Ming, who inspected their progress daily, exceeded her respect for him. Nobody had ever revered Luo Ming out of their own will as much as Feng Jian. Even in his last moment, he showed he was willing to sacrifice himself for Luo Ming.
Upon seeing a blistering gaze from the girl who always obeyed his every whim, Luo Ming pontificated, “I raised him. It’s only fair I kill him,” even though nobody asked him.
Yu Jian had the most potential among Luo Ming’s four personal disciples. Unfortunately, she was also the meekest among the four, holding her swordplay back. If a good teacher and gifted student was all it took to forge an elite, everybody would’ve just followed the formula.
“… Why don’t you kill me, too?” Yu Jian drew her sword and pointed it at Luo Ming’s heart.
“Put your inferior sword away. Don’t insult my sword…” Luo Ming sounded peeved for the first time, well, emotionally invested in something for the first time besides his sword.
Judging from the shape of Yu Jian’s sword hilt, it should’ve been designed in Nanjiang and wrapped in beast leather as well as bamboo strips. In terms of appearance and material, it paled in comparison to Luo Ming’s excellent sword. Regardless of his opinion, though, Yu Jian advanced, asserting, “At least, this sword knows what it means to die standing than live ignobly. Your sword is just sturdier scrap iron.”
“Since you want to die” – Luo Ming’s swing came so quick it resembled red mist proliferating – “I shall oblige.”
Yu Jian made no effort to dodge the first slash that grazed her neck or the successive straight thrust aimed at impaling her throat.
Clang! Using a sword designed mainly for thrusting, Shen Yiren chopped Luo Ming’s sword off its trajectory, yet she surprisingly managed it without halving her sword. That being said, the difference in strength sent her sliding back with half of her body feeling as if she was zapped.
Yu Jian resumed her charge, speeding forward faster than even Feng Jian’s top speed to pierce Luo Ming’s true qi armour. Luo Ming only reacted once his blood got onto his clothing, retreating out of the way but letting his blood trickle onto the ground.
Getting through the true qi armour of Divine Realm adepts is the biggest challenge for opponents a notch below them. In saying that, to say Divine Realm martial artists’ true qi armours are impregnable is incorrect for it’s not attributed to potent internal energy that opponents can’t break them. What they do is mobilise their true qi, turning the chinks in their armour into solid defences. Therefore, the reason Yu Jian managed to graze Luo Ming was a consequence of him reacting too slow to mobilise his true qi.
Shen Yiren informed, “The sword is impacting his mind. His offence may be fearsome, but his defence is poor! Everyone specialising in defence shall work with me to hold him down! Everyone else, attack with all you’ve got!”
Watching Venerable Mianhua and Elder Jia charge at him together irritated Luo Ming enough for him to generate a scowl. As soon as Luo Ming swung, the two pulled back straight away. Luo Ming still had enough of his logic intact to remember it was Yu Jian who cut him, galvanising him to go after her.
“Simmer, Brother Luo.” Elder Shou intercepted Luo Ming’s sword, pulling it off course. “She’s one of your best subordinates. Don’t you think it’d be a waste to kill her?”
Luo Ming roared as he discharged internal energy, slicing everything within three metres around him. Elder Shou pulled his sleeves together and let the wind blow him out of range with Yu Jian. As he escaped, Elder Shou taunted, “I forgot to mention I have rescued the man you took hostage. Thank you for giving Wudang such a nice present. We were worrying about how to remain relevant until this. Being as shameless as I am, I had to be an opportunist.”
“… You…” Luo Ming’s hand shook. “… will die!” Luo Ming failed to intimidate his enemies with his swings this time.
“Elder Jia, get back. Elder Shou, Venerable Mianhua, please defend three strikes. Hero Hong, please switch with Venerable Mianhua after he blocks three strikes,” Shen Yiren commanded, gradually plunging Luo Ming into confusion, allowing them to catch him multiple times.
“Rargh!” Luo Ming violently swung apart their defence formation and then extended his arm on an angle at Elder Jia.
Elder Jia: Oh, sheet me!
Clang! Shen Yiren intervened just in time to save Elder Jia, hammering down on Luo Ming’s stabbing motion. “He’s panic-stricken and, therefore, weakened. Kill him now!”
Luo Ming wouldn’t call anyone of the opponents there strong, but he couldn’t shake off the threatening feeling encroaching on all sides. Boiling, he started swinging with total disregard for structure. While an opponent who swings at random is hard to predict, Luo Ming lacked the crispness he once had despite his increase in speed – consequently power.
“Don’t forget me!”
Luo Ming felt a gale tousle his face out of shape and then went reeling.
Abels’ entrance started with a bang, literally, to Luo Ming’s face. Behind him were River Monster and Mountain Monster.
“Your biggest mistake was not finishing me!”
Chop, slash – They’re not synonyms in the Jian syllabus. The latter uses more wrist and shoulder than the former.