| Chapter 340: Where Are They?
Translator: Irene Editor: X/TYZ
Ai Hui realized suddenly that as the sword formation grew stronger, the Yin Yang turbulent flows gradually regained an advantageous position and started to suppress the metal wind.
Ai Hui started to think again. Could he strengthen the metal wind?
Again, without hesitation, he decided to try, but how?
The Yin Yang sword formation covered a wide area, but the change in Yin and Yang was extremely basic because the grass swords could only endure so much. It was precisely because the change was on such a very basic level that Ai Hui was able to quickly understand the sword formation's evolution under the stimulation of the sword ring metal wind.
On the other hand, the sword ring metal wind, or fragmentary porcelain sword rays, were much more difficult to understand. Under the bombardment of the sword formation, however, Ai Hui was able to witness the marvel within.
The success from earlier gave Ai Hui courage. He struck the moment the fragmentary porcelain sword ray was complete. With a shake of his grass sword, a sword ray entered the fragmentary porcelain sword ray, appearing to give it an additional porcelain piece.
The sword ray became slightly more powerful.
Ai Hui thought this was pretty interesting. He tried supplying the "porcelain pieces" from different positions, which all resulted in differing degrees of strength increment.
Ai Hui memorized each move and its result. It was as if he had just opened the door to a whole new world.
Engrossed, Ai Hui noticed that the sword formation was starting to fall into an inferior position.
He then started to strengthen it.
Ai Hui alternated between strengthening the sword formation and the metal wind.
People outside were all dumbstruck. The range of elemental energy suffocation increased continuously at a constant tempo.
15 feets later, the area affected increased 1 feet by 1 feet...
What situation was this?
Those who witnessed this scene looked bewildered and uncertain. They could not wrap their head around the situation within the sword formation.
Hua Kui, who blended into the crowd, was flabbergasted as well. He knew that Chu Zhaoyang's skill had always been decent, which was why the latter had been selected by him to become an important nurturing target.
Yet, as far as Hua Kui knew, Chu Zhaoyang was merely a decent warrior and definitely not the strongest.
Chu Zhaoyang's current display of talent and power made Hua Kui's jaws drop.
Chu Zhaoyang had soared ever since he attained elemental externalization. He improved astonishingly fast, leaving everyone stupefied.
It was not the first time Hua Kui had seen something like this. Thinking back carefully, Chu Zhaoyang's splendid performance was not strange.
Generally speaking, similar situations often happened to elementalists who had accumulated experience, but were stuck at a certain juncture. Because of their profound and long accumulation of wisdom, they usually progressed rapidly the moment they broke through.
Chu Zhaoyang's experience as a swordsman was extremely profound. While it was surprising that he took a long time to reach elemental externalization, it did not affect Hua Kui's evaluation of him.
Hua Kui could not help but feel somewhat excited.
He suddenly noticed that it was a marvelous decision to invite Chu Zhaoyang into the sword league. Having attained elemental externalization stage, Chu Zhaoyang's swordsmanship progressed rapidly. How could Karakorum not be interested in someone like him?
Things progressed just as he had predicted. No, even better. He had thought that Chu Zhaoyang's ability to break one or two sword formations was already commendable. Who knew that he could actually destroy several sword formations...
Legend had it that the Karakorum's chief was a genius swordsman, but it seemed to Hua Kui that Chu Zhaoyang was on par.
All was well, except for those uninvited guests.
He squinted and scanned the crowd, a murderous glint flashing across his eyes. From one look, he was shrewd enough to tell who the dangerous ones were.
The ordinary looking big man, along with his gang, were the infamous Yellowsand Bandits. This group of bandits was ruthless. The Great Wei Enterprise's massacre was executed by these fellows.
In another corner, a fellow who looked like a simple merchant was Jiao Dafeng, another ruthless character. The three brothers from the Jiao family were inseparable, so the other two had to be hiding nearby.
The harmless-looking lady standing by the wall reminded him of a dangerous name.
After filtering all the suspicious and dangerous targets, his face instantly turned grave. He'd heard some rumors, but had not expected the situation to turn out like this.
He knew that these people were here for Xiao Shuren. Could it be that the ancient treasure Xiao Shuren had obtained was actually an important artifact?
He decided to investigate when the time came.
For now, his priority was to protect Karakorum. Weighing his abilities against the people here, it would not be a problem for him to defeat any one of them. Unfortunately, with so many opponents, he was unable to manage them all at once, which created a thorny situation.
He could not help but tremble at the thought of the punishment that awaited him if he failed the mission.
The organization never had the least bit of patience and mercy toward failures.
He really had been caught off guard!
Hua Kai's gaze fell upon the sword formation once again and was slightly startled. Perhaps this fellow could give him a nice surprise. His rich experience told him that Chu Zhaoyang was possibly undergoing a period of enlightenment.
For someone who had so much accumulated knowledge and experience like Chu Zhaoyang, a sudden enlightenment would increase his abilities exponentially.
There were diligent people who achieved success through constant perseverance and there were also overnight prodigies who succeeded without effort.
Hua Kui quickly weighed the matter in his mind.
Ai Hui, with his increased strength, was in the open. Karakorum's Qin Xian and Lian Junyu had decent abilities. He was in a hidden spot so even if he could not protect everyone around him, this did not mean that it was a lost cause.
Hua Kui raised his head suddenly, looking toward the sword formation.
Countless bright light rays swam vaguely within the formation. The silver metal wind was bright and dazzling. The everchanging sword formation released a horrifying amount of pressure and caused everyone to feel breathless, as if they had been pressed down by a huge rock.
The sky was covered by dark clouds that had unknowingly gathered from all directions. A glimpse of lightning could be seen.
Hua Kui opened his eyes wide in shock.
A glaring wind pillar soared skyward from within the sword formation, straight into the sinister black clouds.
The elemental energy surge had completely surpassed what the grass swords could endure. The dancing swords started exploding successively like firecrackers. They exploded into countless colorfully fragmented rays that hovered around like fog.
What was strange was the fact that the sword formation had not actually collapsed.
The mobile and fragmented rainbow of rays faded bit by bit. With the colors gradually dimming, the rays transformed into a multitude of black and white whirlpools.
The whirlpools were attracted by a bizarre force and started shooting into the wind pillar. The silver wind pillar started to transform into many black and white eddies that attracted and circled around one another, getting all tangled up.
A crisp, shattering sound rang across the field.
The whistling wind pillar was like a fragile piece of porcelain that shattered inch by inch. The broken wind pillar pieces that were now black and white floated up like feathers, as though raising a theater curtain.
A silhouette slowly entered the audience's field of view.
Those present experienced the same illusion. It was as if they had been slashed by an extremely sharp sword, but because of its keen edge, they could not feel any pain. All they felt was a slight chill in the places they were cut.
Qin Xian's face changed, as if a storm raged in his heart.
Sword consciousness! This was sword consciousness!
Legend had it that when an ancient swordsman's aura reached a certain level of concentration, it became like a substance that could cause the skin of others to feel pain, making them felt as if they were being slashed by a sword. This was sword consciousness.
Every muscle in Qin Xian's body was so excited that they were trembling. He didn't expect that he could witness the legendary sword consciousness with his own eyes one day.
The sharp, bitingly cold, and substantial aura enveloped the whole area.
Yet, the fellow emitting this terrifying sword consciousness did not look at them at all.
He stood on tips of his toes with his straightened body arched slightly backward. As he faced the sky, his right hand dangled naturally by his side while wielding the sword.
There were no superfluous sword rays, but this scene was still filled with an inexplicable tension. It felt as if there was an invisible hand that gripped everyone's throat and choked them. It also felt like a kind of magic that attracted everyone's gaze like a magnet.
Suddenly, underneath his raised head, he scanned across the field with apathetic eyes.
Those who made eye contact with him trembled inside and felt a sting in their eyes.
Chu Zhaoyang's gaze was literally sharp!
There were no emotions in his eyes. Calmly overlooking the crowd, he stood god-like, aloof, and remote.
Faces in the crowd changed. Those with guilty consciences felt as though they were being exposed and unable to cover their tracks.
The Yellowsand Bandits fell into a daze, his back drenched in sweat. All his toughness evaporated. In a trembling voice he cried out, "Withdraw! Withdraw immediately!"
The only thing he could think of was to stay as far away from this monster as possible! Escape his line of sight!
No one reacted to his order. He suppressed his fear with great difficulty. He turned around, only to see his subordinates' pale faces and their shuddering bodies as well as hear the chattering of their teeth.
The big man gave the petite man two tight slaps before the latter finally regained his senses.
"Withdraw! Everyone withdraw!"
Completely exhausted, they squeezed their way out of the crowd.
Jiao Dafeng's face was as white as a sheet. He staggered out and the other two brothers also ran away battered and exhausted.
The harmless-looking lady was no longer at the corner by the wall.
Ai Hui was in a bizarre state of mind. He raised the silver broadsword in his hand. His movement was very slow, as if the sword he wielded was extremely heavy.
With each inch raised, there was a fragmented ray that shot into the silver sword, slightly brightening it.
Raised half way, the silver sword exploded with a loud rumble as it was no longer able to endure the power.
Ai Hui shook a little. The frightful aura that enveloped the field suddenly vanished without a trace.
Ai Hui felt the strength in his body emptying. His legs gave way as he fell onto the ground.
As if smashed by a hammer, his head started buzzing loudly. He had no control over his body and was unable to even move his fingers.
The feather-like fragmented rays that floated all over the sky disappeared together with the sinister black clouds. The skys were clear, while the sun was shining bright. It was as if the apocalyptic occurrence had just been an illusion.
When Hua Kui finally recovered from his shock, all he felt was regret. He knew that Chu Zhaoyang had failed to break through.
As he glanced through the crowd of people, his eyes almost fell out. Where is he? Where are they?
All the dangerous targets he had previously picked out were gone.
Hua Kui regained his bearings five seconds later. He turned his head and looked at Chu Zhaoyang, his gaze becoming complicated.