The result of the One Star Hall's fight shocked all the spectators.
Who would have thought that such an epic battle would end in such an unremarkable finish?
Jing Taixu had been scared to death by Li Luo and chosen to give up.
Of course, those that understood the battle knew that it was because at that point, Jing Taixu saw no possibility to win.
Both had been completely drained and were at their limit.
But the dual resonances of water and wood meant that Jing Taixu would never catch up to Li Luo in restoring energy if they were at the same starting point.
Jing Taixu understood this well.
Although Li Luo had only shot a couple of arrows before Jing Taixu gave up, his shots would have gained their usual accuracy again.
Under normal circumstances, those attacks would have been too weak to harm him, but not when his defenses were completely exhausted.
Jing Taixu did not want to lose in such an undignified manner, so he had chosen to surrender instead.
Meanwhile, roaring laughter rang out from all the various towers.
"Li Luo actually won," Lu Ming repeated to herself in disbelief. Probably nobody had expected this outcome.
After all, Jing Taixu had been the undisputed hot favorite, while Li Luo was a nameless dark horse.
And now the prime stallion had been outraced.
The other students beside Lu Ming looked as though they had just seen a ghost. Previously, they had insisted that Li Luo had only defeated Lu Ming because of his poison tricks. But now even Jing Taixu had lost, and it would be foolish to hold on to their denial.
Lu Ming looked at the youth sprawled lazily across the Dragonbone Throne. This guy was something else.
"Jing Taixu... that guy's senses are even sharper than a woman's instinct," Lu Ming thought with dry humor. He was the one who had come to her first with the plan of eliminating Li Luo, and she was the one who had thought that he was seeing knives in the shadows. But from the result now, Jing Taixu's instincts were clearly on point.
Even so, he had lost to Li Luo when fully prepared.
So perhaps those instincts were in facing the right direction, but still not helpful.
And Li Luo. He had a sick streak in him, shooting those arrows at Jing Taixu's crotch to humiliate him. She did not really believe his shots were badly aimed, no matter how weak he was. She shook her head. She had no interest in the enmity between those two.
In another tower, Sun Dasheng was equally shocked. He was the first one out of the three who had fought Li Luo. Although he had been surprised by Li Luo's power back then, he had not thought too much about it.
“Jing Taixu lost to him?
"Seems like there are still many hidden geniuses in the East Divine Continent. I underestimated the competition, but if I can just get to the Fourth Changing, I think my odds against both Jing Taixu and Li Luo will increase by a lot.
"One step at a time. Even if the Hall-level competition's lost, the Holy Grail Meet is not over yet. I can still shine in the mixed-level competition." Sun Dasheng's confidence was shaken but not broken, even though he had lost to Jing Taixu once already. He was still raring to fight.
Over at the Enlightened Sage College, it was as if the sky had fallen down on their heads.
Some buried their heads in their hands, sobbing out of sheer denial. Others wrung their hands vaguely.
On the Enlightened Sage College's team, their One and Four Star Hall students were seen as the best seeds. Jing Taixu had been favored by the school from head to toe.
And now that careful seedling had been uprooted.
Jing Taixu had collapsed before the Dragonbone Throne.
At the feet of the nameless Li Luo!
It was a devastating blow to the morale of the Enlightened Sage College students.
Even the usually composed Vice Principal Guo Jiufeng looked like he had just swallowed a lemon, and he was swallowing more every second he looked at Li Luo's smug posture on the Dragonbone Throne.
"How did Jing Taixu lose?" a Violet Vibrance mentor asked in disbelief.
"That sword..." Guo Jiufeng sighed. "If I'm not mistaken, it used to be Pang Qianyuan's partner weapon. The Golden-Jade Onyx-Elephant Blade... It’s only a gold-eye treasured artifact, but there’s divine power within it. Still, the power demands a lot from the physical body. Li Luo should not have been able to contain it."
The Violet Vibrance mentor sighed. Well, such speculation was useless now. The battle was over.
A vortex opened, and Jing Taixu fell out of it.
He was pale and weak still, but he could sense that the atmosphere around him was horribly off.
It was the first time in his life that he was being regarded so disparagingly.
He did not shirk away from it, but walked over to Guo Jiufeng. "Vice Principal, I've wasted the trust that the school has put in me," he said hoarsely.
Guo Jiufeng's expression was stiff, but he eventually sighed. "You've done your best," he said, not unkindly. "There is no need to blame yourself. The Holy Grail Meet is not over yet, and I look forward to an even better performance from you in the mixed-level competition."
As the vice principal, he could not berate Jing Taixu publicly at the cost of general morale, even though he was in a dark mood.
Jing Taixu nodded and then walked away, unwilling to stay in this prickly atmosphere a moment longer than he had to.
Guo Jiufeng turned to the Four Star Hall screen.
Their final hope, Lan Lan.
This was a far cry from the initial goal that they had set out to accomplish.
Three golden resonant tree brooches, with the Three Star Hall’s one a lucky bid and the One and Four Star Hall ones all but guaranteed.
Enough to prove themselves worthy as the former champions.
That dream was all but shattered now.
Instead, it was the Astral Sage College who had emerged out of the blue and clinched both One and Three Star Hall titles, taking the competition by storm.
Guo Jiufeng finally managed to get his feelings under control.
The battle was not over. They still had a chance.
At least the Four Star Hall golden resonant tree brooch was one he still believed would come home.Previous Chapter Next Chapter