The Divine Nine-Dragon Cauldron
Chapter 22: Knockout Blow
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
At a tricky but precise angle, the arrow hit the huge barbed tiger right in its eye! One of its very few weaknesses!
The barbed tiger felt the pain immensely. Shot blind in one eye, it used its other eye to seek out its enemies.
From a tree in the distance, a youth clad in white quickly held up a scarlet bow in his hands. At the same time, a second arrow was shot.
The tiger let out a roar, gave up the youth at its paw, and dodged swiftly. It wanted to chase Su Yu, but the latter's bow and arrow kept shooting, completely airtight. Desperate to flee, it growled as it dragged itself away, severely injured. Su Yu put away his scarlet bow, sprang into the woods, and chased it.
Free from the clutches of death, the three gold students were covered in cold sweat. "Quickly, go after it!" The three immediately pursued.
The huge tiger's will to live was very strong. It ran for half a day before it was exhausted and died. Su Yu worked quickly with his hands and stripped the tiger's hide, which was extremely valuable.
Ah, what is this? Su Yu suddenly found, inside the huge barbed tiger's mouth, a tough black nut stuck in its teeth, preventing it from being swallowed or crushed. Su Yu found it difficult to pull it out without help.
"Stop!" A shout came from behind.
The three gold students quickly arrived, saw the meat from the flayed tiger hide, and then looked at Su Yu's hand holding the black nut when their expression changed instantly.
Li Minghao found him familiar-looking, and recalled, Isn't this the newly crowned Silver King, Su Yu? "It's you! The Silver King, Su Yu!"
The other two gold students looked at each other and heaved a sigh of relief that it was a fellow student. They would have to safeguard against a stranger. Su Yu merely glanced at him and focused his gaze on the other two.
"So you're Su Yu, the Silver King. I'm Lu Xuan, this is my younger brother, Lu Xing." Lu Xuan was a Level Three Peak gold student. Su Yu's brows twitched in recognition of Lu Xuan's name. He had heard of him, a gold student ranked in the top three of the most powerful! Fancy meeting him here.
And Lu Xing, though not as famous as his brother, was no small fry. He too was a gold student ranked tenth and powerful.
"Do you have something you would like to say to me?" Su Yu calmly held the black nut close to himself.
Seeing this, Lu Xuan raised his brows, but kept silent when he saw how Lu Xing was safe and sound. If Su Yu had not lent a hand in time, his brother would have lost his life to the tiger. Reluctantly obliged to his savior, Lu Xing's lips quivered, finding it difficult to ask for the black nut as he could not bear to be known as ungrateful.
Li Minghao, who had no such qualms about it, smiled coldly. "We were combining our forces to kill the demonic beast when you barged in the middle of it to take advantage. And you're not afraid of bursting at the seams by grabbing all the spoils for yourself!"
"What do you want?" Su Yu was unperturbed even though he once looked up to Li Minghao. Not anymore, now that things were different. Li Minghao curled his lips. "What? Let go of the tiger skin and leave the black nut! Since you helped, the tiger meat is yours to take!"
"What if I said no?" Su Yu hated people like Li Minghao who abused their power and did whatever they wanted. Like Qin Feng, he bullied and humiliated others' wives, daughters and their families.
Li Minghao sneered, "Now that you are the Silver King, you're becoming full of yourself, aren't you? Such insolence in front of a gold student!
"I'm going to count to three. If not, do not blame me, a gold student, for bullying a silver student like you!" Li Minghao extended three of his fingers to show what he meant. Smiling coldly, Li Minghao put down a finger.
This time, Su Yu moved and rapidly sprang forward five meters! He got within attacking distance of Li Minghao in two steps!
Dumbstruck, Li Minghao's smile froze as he hastily tried to fend off the blows! Universal Stroke! The punches and kicks came fast and furious, one after another without a break. The attack seemed endless, but because of the rapid battering, 64 blows were dealt with just two breaths.
Li Minghao, unable to resist any longer, took a kick in the chest that hurt him internally and spurted blood from his mouth as he hurled backwards. Su Yu lightly landed, looked indifferently upon his appalled face and said coolly, "I did not want to attack you, but you thought too highly of yourself."
As he said it, Su Yu helped bend the last finger to complete the three counts, "Three! You lost." With just three breaths, he instantly defeated a gold student in the top 30 ranking!
The Lu brothers were shocked. The newly-crowned Silver King was more powerful than Chen Tiannan, the predecessor who lost to Li Minghao in one move. Su Yu just won with one knockout blow.
Lu Xing refused to accept it and coldly chided, "Su Yu! You shouldn't be so arrogant even if you have saved my life. Robbed us of our trophies and injured one of us!"
"Since you're so confident, how about a duel?" Lu Xing said stonily as he stepped forward. His powerful energy had given him the absolute advantage to suppress Su Yu.
Su Yu brushed the dust off his robe and smirked, "If I had known earlier, I should have waited for you to be eaten before doing anything. It really doesn't pay to be nice in this world."
"Come back here, you idiot!" Lu Xuan seethed as he pulled Lu Xing back. Feeling disgruntled, the younger brother struggled, "He is being such an intolerable bully!"
"Shut your mouth!" Lu Xuan angrily rebuked and managed to shut up a resentful Lu Xing, while his occasional glances at Su Yu were not friendly.
Lu Xuan cupped his fists and apologized, "I hope Brother Su can forgive my younger brother, who's still inexperienced." Even though they were both peers, he had used an honorific "Brother Su," thus showing the respect gained by Su Yu's strength and power.
Su Yu nodded. "Eh, if there's nothing else, I, Su, will take leave of you."
"Wait! Did Brother Su journey here in search of the place guarded by the demonic beasts?" Lu Xuan's eyes flashed with the thought that it was too much of a coincidence to run into each other here.
Su Yu had in fact guessed their destination was the same cave with the spirit treasure, as Xuan Lefei had told him. Without any need to hide, Su Yu thought for a little while and confirmed, "Yes."
Lu Xuan smiled. "What does Brother Su think about traveling with us? We can look after each other. There are bound to be many dangers in that heavily guarded place."
Su Yu peeked at Li Minghao, shook his head and refused. He was reluctant to travel with Li Minghao, whom might stab him in the back, given his grudge.
Li Minghao clenched his teeth, already bracing himself for the outrage, and angrily turned to leave. "Brother Lu, I apologize. I, Li, now say goodbye to you!" It was obvious that Lu Xuan was keen for Su Yu to stay but it was inappropriate to drive Li Minghao away due to his honor. It was beneath Li Minghao's dignity to accept such charity.
Lu Xuan pretended to urge him to stay for a little while and finally sighed in resignation. Only then Su Yu joined the pair of brothers. The three of them rested by the lake after they had divvied up the last valuable bit of the huge tiger. Based on what the brothers had revealed, Su Yu now knew the black nut was the crucial reason they had tried to kill the tiger. It was a Dark Spirit Fruit, which was grown in harsh conditions and contained immense power-enhancing properties with endless benefits.
That night, Su Yu pried open the Dark Spirit Fruit and found its white crystalline pulp with its intoxicating aroma permeating the surroundings. Just one whiff was enough to loosen up one's body, stirring the blood and energy for action. Once swallowed, an icy sensation slowly spread, and a comfortable energy seeped into all the limbs and bones, transforming his body.
The transformation and cultivation reached a tipping point. With a powerful energetic breakthrough, he naturally advanced to become a Level Three Upper Tier!
Lu Xuan saw and inwardly nodded. I heard that this Silver King was just a mediocre Level One a month ago. Now he's a powerful Level Three Upper Tier with his cultivation level comparable to the top 20 gold students.
Feeling envious, Lu Xing scornfully said, "So what if I don't have the same advantageous cultivation boost during my cultivation? I can still beat him with one move!"
"Forget about it, you're no match for him." Lu Xuan subtly shook his head, his eyes flashed.
"Pff! How's that possible? Even though he completed his cultivation of the Universal Stroke, my medium-level cultivation technique had been cultivated to the third layer completely. He won't be able to withstand even one maneuver if we met force with force." Lu Xing scoffed.
Lu Xuan thought and said, "I don't know either, it's just a hunch, he must be hiding more powerful strength."
At daybreak, Su Yu opened his eyes, which shone a flash of brilliant light, and potent energy radiated from him. He was very satisfied with the powerful breakthrough, but he knew that was not enough! Qin Feng was still a strong gold student ranked second with his cultivation at Level Four Lower Tier. Su Yu had a long way to go.
The group hurried on with their journey after a little rest.
Some days later, right before the valley.
"It is said that a pair of fiery lions guards the cave's entrance," Lu Xuan murmured, wary and cautious. The fiery lion, a category-one demonic beast, emitted strong blazing flames at burning temperature from its body, an extremely tricky task.
"According to our original plan, we were going to strangle the demonic beasts together. With Brother Su joining us, it should be much easier." Lu Xuan stared into the dark abyss of the valley.
Su Yu's crystalline pupils flashed, and his expression slightly changed, "Run quickly!" With these words, he retreated first.
Lu Xuan showed little hesitation and immediately bolted. Staring at the dark valley, Lu Xing did not see anything and only grudgingly followed, after some hesitation.
"What's going on? Spit it out!" Lu Xing could barely keep up with the two.
His heart beating wildly, Su Yu did not say a word. He had seen a horrible scene with his crystalline pupils, which could see in the dark. About a mile away, inside the dark valley, a youth wearing green killed someone with a snap of his fingers!
The victim's strength was comparable to a Level Three Peak like Lu Xuan, and yet was annihilated by a snap of the fingers! After having easily killed a person, the youth in green stood perfectly straight in the pool of blood, sensed something, turned his head and directed his sharp gaze directly at Su Yu and the others!
The youth smirked! They were exposed!
This person's strength was terrifying beyond imagination! He had only ever felt this soul-shattering terror from Housemaster Ye, a Level Six in the Martial Path.
Feeling ignored, Lu Xing was incensed. He charged forward with a whoosh and blocked Su Yu's path. "Hey Su! I've put up with you for long enough! You think you can ignore others now that you are the Silver King!" Lu Xing shouted with reprehension.
Su Yu was holding in his anxiety. That green-clad youth had already discovered them, and Lu Xing, unable to differentiate the good intentions, chose this moment to pick a fight. "If you want to die, I won't keep you! Step aside!" Su Yu scolded with no time to explain.
Lu Xing angrily laughed, "You run at the first sign of trouble, and still pretend to be mysterious? Let me use my fists to pry open your mouth!"
"No!" Lu Xuan barked, but it was too late.
"Tail Star Formation!" Lu Xing's two fingers combined as if they were a sword and swiftly arcked forward in a streak of light like the tail of a shooting star.
The air cracked and burst with that one powerful shot.
"Get lost!" Su Yu boiled on the inside. Having no time to tangle with him, Su Yu immediately counterattacked!
Su Yu's right leg swayed back and forth like falling leaves in a storm, one foot after another, movement after movement like the waves surging in the vast ocean. Gusts of icy wind whirred around his legs, as if it were winter in the northern mountains.
Lu Xing's finger fractured, and the bones crushed. He was flung back five meters, crashed into a big tree and blood sprayed from his mouth. Lu Xing was aghast, staring at Su Yu in disbelief. He was seriously injured with just one maneuver!
He had imagined that Su Yu, an unworthy and inferior silver student, would not be able to withstand a single blow. But in fact, it was him, defeated with a single blow, who was no match for Su Yu.
Lu Xuan's eyes suddenly narrowed as he quickly examined Lu Xing's injury, his eyes slightly clouded over and flickering. Then he lightly took a breath, cupped his fists and said, "Brother Su, thank you for being lenient!"
What? Lu Xing was thrashed by the cold air, and Su Yu was being lenient?
A deep sense of awe and respect began to rise within him.