Chapter 178: Liang Yulong’s Change in Attitude

Demoness's Art of Vengeance

After Rong Ruihan left the Eternal Summit Sect’s seating area, he did not immediately leave the competition grounds. Instead, he turned around, entered the Dawn Sect’s designated seating area and located the Heavenly Peak disciples.

“Brother Wei, do you mind if I sit here?” Rong Ruihan’s steady and firm voice boomed out above Wei Gaolang’s head. There happened to be an empty seat right beside Wei Gaolang.

“Eh?! Brother Rong, what are you doing here?” Wei Gaolang only just noticed the presence of another person beside him, “Please take a seat! This was originally where martial sister Xiaomo would be seated, but I think she had planned to return straight to the inn after her battle.”

Rong Ruihan smiled, “Is that so? Thank you very much.”

Wei Gaolang waved his hands to show that he did not mind it at all, “No need for thanks. I’ve said it before, martial sister Xiaomo’s friend is also my friend!”

A faint smile crept up the corner of Rong Ruihan’s lips, and he no longer stood on ceremony as he took his seat.

Knowing that Jun Xiaomo had just been sitting here made a strangely pleasant sensation swell from within the depths of his heart. Rong Ruihan ignored this feeling and looked back towards the stage. At this moment, the Eternal Summit Sect’s disciple had also finally made his way to the stage.

Liang Yulong stood at the stage with a grimace as he gazed at Jun Xiaomo with a desolate expression on his face.

That’s right, desolate. His talent for cultivation couldn’t be considered high, so he had only managed to attain the eighth level of Qi Mastery in his twenties. Notwithstanding that, he was incredibly hardworking – far more than any of his other fellow martial brothers who enjoyed boosting their cultivation levels using pills and medicine. Liang Yulong’s cultivation was all of his own hard work and efforts. In other words, he was a man of substance.

This competition had been an opportunity of a lifetime. He knew that if he could place top three in the Lower Category battles, then regardless of his lack of talent, he might very possibly earn the attention and favour of Greater Sects and finally be able to leave the Eternal Summit Sect behind.

That said, Fate enjoys playing cruel tricks on people – it knew that he had worked hard, but it nevertheless made sure to force him into such a despondent predicament.

If he lost to this young lady at only the fifth level of Qi Mastery, then there was no doubt that he would become one of the greatest laughingstocks in the history of the cultivation world. At that time, would there still be any Greater Sect who would be willing to accept him?

On the other hand, if he refused to submit to Jun Xiaomo, he knew that Dai Yue possessed countless ways of tormenting him, and she would almost certainly do her utmost to put him through the harshest of punishments.

It’s just my dumb luck that Dai Yue had to have such a “good father”. Liang Yulong mocked himself in his heart. Worst of all, Dai Yanfeng was also his master, and there was simply no way he could reasonably refuse Dai Yue’s request here.

Forget it. Haven’t all these things been decided a long time ago? He knew that no amount of hatred and indignation would be able to change his reality right now.

Rong Ruihan’s heart sank, he clenched his fist, and a look of humiliation swelled up from the depths of his pupils.

Jun Xiaomo stood in front of Liang Yulong as she furrowed her brows – Is this an illusion? Why do I get the feeling that his emotions seem to be in turmoil?

Just then, the referee stood up, rang the bell beside him and declared, “I hereby declare that this battle has officially be-…”

“Referee.” Liang Yulong suddenly cut off the referee’s declaration. He no longer faced Jun Xiaomo. Instead, he had turned straight towards the referee and bowed politely as he announced, “I’m abandoning this competition. I admit defeat.”

Liang Yulong’s voice was monotonous and emotionless, but it had been picked up by the Voice Amplification Array and transmitted to the rest of the audience. Within moments, the entire audience was filled with a complete silence.

Everyone stared at Liang Yulong with widened eyes and gaping mouths in complete disbelief on what they had just heard.

Are the Dawn Sect and the Eternal Summit Sect trying to outdo each other in terms of madness? First, Jun Xiaomo had clearly overestimated her abilities and decided to make her appearance only on the seventh day. Then, Liang Yulong decided to abandon this once-in-a-lifetime advantageous situation and admit defeat?

What kind of madness was this? Has everyone gone mad?

Moments later, an infuriated voice bellowed out from the audience, “Liang Yulong, what are you doing?! Who told you to give up?!”

This voice had been infused with the immense aura of its owner’s cultivation as it travelled towards the arena, but the aura was instantly blocked off and filtered out by the sequestering formation arrays on the arena.

There was no need to turn around to identify the owner of this voice. Liang Yulong knew it full well – apart from Dai Yanfeng, there was nobody else who would be yelling at him in the circumstances.

But what else can I do? Liang Yulong grimaced as he derided himself again. Dai Yanfeng’s daughter, Dai Yue had asked him to pretend to lose against a cultivator at the fifth level of Qi Mastery just so that she could personally deal with Jun Xiaomo in the next battle.

Liang Yulong was at the eighth level of Qi Mastery, while Jun Xiaomo was at the fifth level of Qi Mastery. How was he going to even begin “pretending” in this regard? Could he pretend to slip and fall, and let Jun Xiaomo benefit from his “clumsiness”?

No matter how one thinks about it, this was a completely ridiculous request!

Thus, the more Liang Yulong thought about it, the more he felt that it might be better to lose in a straightforward manner. As to the reason for his admission of defeat, he was satisfied leaving the audience guessing for themselves.

Dai Yanfeng noticed that his disciple had completely ignored him, and the fury in his heart burgeoned. Thus, he bellowed at the stage once more, “Liang Yulong, if you don’t withdraw your admission of defeat right now, I’m going to send you straight to the Penal Hall once you’re back from the arena!”

Dai Yue’s expression wasn’t much better either. She had indeed instructed Liang Yulong to intentionally lose to Jun Xiaomo, but certainly not in such an obvious manner.

Furthermore, she had personally instructed him to severely beat up Jun Xiaomo before he “lost”.

What’s going on?! If he just admits defeat like this, he’s almost sure to get summoned to the Penal Hall to answer to the Sect Elders. What if Liang Yulong implicates me? Will I be punished as well? Father is only the Grand Elder of the Sect, and even he might not be able to do much to protect me when that time comes.

Thus, Dai Yue began to curse and swear at Liang Yulong in her heart.

On the other side, where the Dawn Sect’s designated seating area was, He Zhang’s face was incredibly ashen as well. After all, he had laced Jun Xiaomo’s food with one-third of the powdered Bedeviled Grass. The last thing he wanted to see was for Jun Xiaomo to win her opponent without having to even lift a finger and return from the battle completely unscathed.

Having made a few more calculations, He Zhang also realized that the effects of the powdered substance was soon to manifest as well. But if the Eternal Summit Sect’s disciple suddenly decided to forfeit the battle, then what was the point of He Zhang’s earlier preparations? The use of the Bedeviled Grass would have been completely wasted!

Thus, He Zhang’s heart roiled with both anxiety and infuriation. In fact, he was fiercely trying to resist the urge to run up to the arena and personally activating the demonic energy within Jun Xiaomo’s body.

It was not uncommon to hear of participants forfeiting their battles. The referees would never probe into the reason for forfeiting their battles either. Thus, even though Liang Yulong’s abandonment of the incredibly advantageous situation to him was highly suspicious, they would nevertheless respect Liang Yulong’s decision and refrain from interfering from these matters.

“Liang Yulong, are you certain? Do you choose to forfeit the battle and consequently admit defeat to your opponent, Jun Xiaomo?” The referee calmly confirmed Liang Yulong’s decision.

“I confirm.”

“I object.”

Just when Liang Yulong confirmed his decision, Jun Xiaomo also announced her objection to his forfeiture.

Liang Yulong’s eyes widened as he stared at Jun Xiaomo in disbelief.

Jun Xiaomo smiled faintly at him as she added, “I refuse to accept your admission of defeat. I hope to have a good battle with you on the arena today.”

Liang Yulong furrowed his brows and couldn’t help but exclaim, “Are you out of your mind?”

If she were not out of her mind, why did she refuse to accept such a fortuitous turn of events for herself and insist on battling? How could a cultivator at the fifth level of Qi Mastery possibly defeat a cultivator at the eighth level of Qi Mastery?

Even the audience thought that Jun Xiaomo was completely out of her mind at this moment.

Yet Jun Xiaomo chuckled lightly and explained, “I’m not out of my mind. I simply don’t care too much about things like winning or losing. I just want to let loose and thoroughly enjoy the process of battle. Will you let me have this opportunity?”

Liang Yulong’s eyes widened even more. This was the first time he had heard someone unconcerned about winning or losing, and more concerned about the process.

However, faced with that pristine clear obsidian-black pupils staring earnestly into his eyes, Liang Yulong could tell that what she was saying was from the bottom of her heart.

She indeed desired nothing more than to immerse herself in the joy of battle in an unrestrained manner.

Such a strange person. This was Liang Yulong’s assessment of Jun Xiaomo. Yet he was somehow also slightly moved by Jun Xiaomo’s suggestion.

Liang Yulong’s fists tightened momentarily and loosened again. Then, he clenched his fists once more and quivered slightly.

It was as though he were making an incredibly difficult decision. He closed his eyes and drew a deep breath. Finally, when his eyes opened once more, there was a firm sense of resolve swelling from the depths of his eyes.

“Alright, then let’s put winning and losing aside and thoroughly enjoy this battle between ourselves.”

Liang Yulong knew that people like Jun Xiaomo would never admit defeat so easily, nor would they readily accept his forfeiture and claim an unearned victory for themselves.

Therefore, he sincerely accepted his opponent’s decision, steeled his resolve and decided to face his opponent seriously.

As for Dai Yue? Who cares! Dai Yanfeng had already made up his mind to send me to the Penal Hall after all.

Liang Yulong’s heart no longer bore any respect for his master, Dai Yanfeng.

Jun Xiaomo was delighted. She could now see that Liang Yulong’s battle intent had once again been ignited.

She got the feeling that Liang Yulong’s personality was not too bad. Furthermore, she knew that he had been struggling with the decision to admit defeat, so there were clearly external factors playing on his mind there. Thus, she had earlier decided to give him a nudge in the right direction and help him with his decision.

Besides that, it was a fact that she wished to thoroughly enjoy this battle – she wanted to assess for herself what her combat abilities were like without the aid of her talismans and formation arrays.

As to whether she won or loss, she truly couldn’t care less about these things. That said, winning was far better than losing. At the very least, a win would serve to silence the flapping mouths of the gossip mongers around!

The referee heard the conversation between Liang Yulong and Jun Xiaomo. Therefore, having confirmed the participants’ decisions to carry on with the battle once more, the referee declared that the battle would begin in five minutes.

The reason for this delay was so that the participants could take the time to adjust their emotions and disposition once more before commencing the battle.

Having made his decision, Liang Yulong felt as though the heavy stone that was weighing down his heart had finally been released.

There was still a little bit of time before the battle. Liang Yulong’s gaze landed on his opponent, and he noticed that Jun Xiaomo perpetually wore a faint smile on her face.

Jun Xiaomo did not lock eyes with him. Instead, she took out a fiery-red whip and began to toy with it. Her calm and composed disposition was incommensurate with the fact that she was soon to take the stage for a battle. Rather, it looked as thought she were on her way to an excursion or the like.

He was different from other male cultivators. Liang Yulong had never truly noticed Jun Xiaomo or sized her up prior to this. Even though he had heard his martial brothers’ discreet discussions and exclamations about how beautiful and attractive Jun Xiaomo was, he had never thought to verify these things for himself.

To him, Jun Xiaomo simply carried two labels with her – the first was “fifth level of Qi Mastery”, while the other was “Dawn Sect disciple”.

With the confluence of these two labels, Liang Yulong’s impression was that this lady was not a strong opponent.

Yet having interacted with Jun Xiaomo and sized her up in close proximity, he truly couldn’t help but find that this young lady was indeed stunning and breathtaking.

This was not merely in terms of her looks. This also included her disposition. Her striking red garments clothed here with the appearance of an extravagant beauty, and at the same time made her look cold and distant. It was as though he were looking at an attention-grabbing display of a dazzling inferno with leaping flames dancing in front of his eyes, yet that intense heat meant that no one could step within a radius of three meters of it.

There was even the way that Jun Xiaomo toyed with the whip in her hands. It gave rise to an indescribable sensation in the depths of people’s hearts that made them wish they were that whip in her hand so that they could experience the sensation when Jun Xiaomo’s pale and pristine fingers wrapped around them.

Liang Yulong closed his eyes and shifted his attention away from Jun Xiaomo.

Ding! Just then, the sound of a bell rang out, and the referee’s voice resounded from some distance away –

“I hereby announce that the third battle on the seventh day of the Secondary Inter-Sect Competition begins now!”

Liang Yulong ferociously opened his eyes once more, and this time, the only expression remaining in the depths of his eyes was a raging battle intent.

Jun Xiaomo smiled faintly, brandished her whip and lashed it out firmly on the ground nearby.

Liang Yulong struck first, but Jun Xiaomo rapidly blocked his blow with her whip.

“Don’t worry. On account for the fact that you’ve helped me earlier, I won’t go too hard on you.” Liang Yulong communicated discreetly with Jun Xiaomo in the moment that they clashed.

He felt that with his cultivation at the eighth level of Qi Mastery, this was going to be nothing more than a one-sided battle. Therefore, he decided to hold back slightly as he locked in combat with Jun Xiaomo.

Yet Jun Xiaomo raised her eyebrows quizzically – Does this guy intend to go easy on me?

The smile on Jun Xiaomo’s face widened, and her gaze grew far more incisive than it had been moments ago.

She knew that she had to let her opponent experience for himself the consequences of being complacent.

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