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NETS - Chapter 174: Qi Zi-Cai

Under Yin Zi-Chu’s cooperation, Lu Ping used the element of surprise and killed an Ocean Overturning Gang cultivator in one fell swoop.

The remaining two Ocean Overturning Gang cultivators were shocked. They shouted angrily, "Not good, there's an ambush!"

"Watch out, his sword skills are not ordinary!"

The leader, who had just broken Ji Zi-Xuan's ironclad puppet's broadsword, heard his men shouting and immediately looked back.

A red-faced cultivator wielding a green flying sword, slashed out a wave of dense sword lights, creating a wave out of thin air that swept towards the remaining two cultivators.

The leader said alarmingly, "Be careful, this is Sword Intent. He has attained the State of Intent."

But it was too late, he was answered by a severed arm and screams.

The leader’s eyes turned red. He turned back and attacked Ji Zi-Xuan with all his might, as he wanted to take down Ji Zi-Xuan, so he could go and help the others.

The leader used his Flying Cloud Sleeves and tripped the armored puppet sending it rolling on the ground. Then, he seized the opportunity and shattered the ironclad puppet’s left arm.

Just as he was about to secure the victory, two bone-chilling sword lights suddenly appeared right behind his head.

The leader hurriedly titled his head sideways and dodged the deadly blow from Yin Zi-Chu, but this slowed down his attacks with the Crystal Mace.

Ji Zi-Xuan quickly seized the chance to recall his ironclad puppet back to his sides and finally teamed up with Yin Zi-Chu.

The leader cursed inside his heart. He turned around and saw the red-faced cultivator casually suppressing his men who were powerless to fight back.

Seeing the situation, the leader knew their plan had failed and he turned to retreat.

Ji Zi-Xuan and Yin Zi-Chu, who had almost suffered a great loss, were naturally not willing to let the matter slide.

Ji Zi-Xuan’s armored puppet opened up its armor into a pair of wings, and instantly flew in front of the Ocean Overturning Gang leader to stop him. At the same time, Yin Zi-Chu moved like lightning and caught up with the leader.

Ji Zi-Xuan put away the damaged ironclad puppet and waved his hands, summoning a set of nine carving knives in front of him. The carving knives stabbed at different parts of the leader as if trying to hack him into a sculpture.

Ji Zi-Xuan practiced under the Pavilion of Puppetry and had always been using his puppets to fight. As a result, it surprised Lu Ping, seeing him suddenly fight with mystic instruments like other cultivators.

Lu Ping was reminded that besides being a puppet master, Ji Zi-Xuan was still a cultivator after all. So, he could naturally use mystic instruments like others.

However, unlike other cultivators, Ji Zi-Xuan’s attack style was very special. His carving knives never aimed for deadly parts of the body, but rather insignificant places which were often where cultivators paid the least attention to, and didn’t care about defending. As a result, Ji Zi-Xuan’s attacks were very easy to land.

Although the wounds were small and non-fatal, they could easily be stacked up leading to dire consequences.

This kind of fighting style was truly unique, but it demanded a lot from the cultivator, such as their perceptiveness, movement, coordination, patience, and perseverance.

Lu Ping made two quick slashes with his Verdant Dawn Sword. The two cultivators repelled his attacks with all their might, but one of them was missing an arm and so they could not cooperate effectively.

Lu Ping saw the flaw in their stance and shot out two Emerald Blood Divine Needles, killing the two Ocean Overturning Gang cultivators in an instant.

The leader was indeed worthy of being equal to a North Ocean 18 Warrior.

He wrapped up Ji Zi-Xuan’s armored puppet with his Flying Cloud Sleeves, while swinging his Crystal Mace to the sides. Yin Zi-Chu didn’t dare to take the brunt of the Crystal Mace and was forced back.

Then, the Crystal Mace turned directions and knocked away six of Ji Zi-Xuan’s nine carving knives. The remaining three carving knives only left a small cut on his leg and arm, with the final one striking his abdomen, blocked by his aegis energy.

At this time, Lu Ping, who had just killed the two cultivators, was rushing over. The leader noticed his arrival and quickly retreated.

As the leader was about to exit the forest, a clear chirp could suddenly be heard overhead, and a green flame burst towards him.

This was a monster's innate fire, and the level of this innate fire wasn’t weak either. If he had run straight into it, he would have been severely burnt. 

The innate fire only stalled the Ocean Overturning Gang leader for a moment, but a moment was all Lu Ping needed.

Lu Ping cast his [Thousand Stacks of Snow Sword Art] and swept the leader into frightening waves of sword lights.

Ji Zi-Xuan and Yin Zi-Chu quietly waited for the perfect timing. Eventually, when the leader was too busy defending himself from Lu Ping’s sword attacks, and revealed a flaw in his stance, the duo seized the chance and delivered the killing blow.

After the leader was killed, the three of them put away their mystic instruments.

Lu Ping shook his head, "Junior Brother Ji, your fighting style is really ...... special!"

Ji Zi-Xuan cheekily smiled, "Who asked him to break my puppet. I wouldn’t have needed to fight personally on the battlefield otherwise. By the way, Senior Brother Lu, where have you been this whole time? Why did you only find us after two months?"

Lu Ping briefly explained to them his encounters. Naturally, he concealed what he wanted to keep to himself.

Ji Zi-Xuan's eyes lit up, "Senior Brother Lu actually went to the Canyon of Sullied Gold? How admirable! Also, this Amethyst Bee Royal Jelly you have, you must give some to me after we leave the Heaven of Seven Stars. I heard that when brewed with water, they can increase a cultivators’ cultivation base."

Lu Ping slapped his forehead and said helplessly, "That is simply a waste of resources. This is Amethyst Bee Royal Jelly, not Amethyst Bee Honey. I don’t even have enough for my alchemy, and you want to mix them with water? No way!"

Ji Zi-Xuan laughed with a playful face and started bugging Lu Ping to concoct him some Bee Jelly Pellets. Ji Zi-Xuan said that he would supply the required spirit herbs on his own, and eventually managed to persuade Lu Ping into agreeing.

Then, Yin Zi-Chu returned with the Ocean Overturning Gang’s five interspatial pouches, and said, "There is another one that fell unconscious after I seriously injured him. I’ve already suppressed his cultivation base, what should we do with him?"

The five interspatial pouches contained very little items related to the Ocean Overturning Gang, similar to the other Ocean Overturning Gang cultivators that Lu Ping had killed before.

However, there were many other miscellaneous things that had obviously not been sorted out in time. This suggested that they were probably obtained from robbing other cultivators in the Heaven of Seven Stars.

Looking at the items in the interspatial pouches, Lu Ping took all the spirit herbs for himself. Ji Zi-Xuan and Yin Zi-Chu knew that Lu Ping was an alchemist, and so they naturally didn’t have any objections.

Furthermore, there were also many good things left, including two top-grade mystic instruments, which Ji Zi-Xuan and Yin Zi-Chu took one each. The top-grade mystic instrument Ji Zi-Xuan obtained was the Crystal Mace, as he wanted to equip it on his ironclad puppet.

Lu Ping also found a hexagonal jade token in the Ocean Overturning Gang leader’s interspatial pouch. This jade token was exactly the same as the one he had found in Yuan Shi-Kong's interspatial pouch.

The only difference was that the word engraved on this jade token was “Tranquil”. Did this mean that this Ocean Overturning Gang leader was the division master of the Tranquil Sea Division? Lu Ping mused while keeping away the jade token.

After they distributed the wealth in the interspatial pouches, Ji Zi-Xuan said with a salivating face, "Looks like robbery is the way to go!"

Even Yin Zi-Chu beside him nodded slightly in agreement, with an expressionless face.

Lu Ping looked at the two speechlessly. Yin Zi-Chu always had a cold face, so Lu Ping didn’t feel much. 

However, Ji Zi-Xuan had always been maintaining the image of a gentle and elegant young nobleman, so it really felt odd to see a greedy expression on his face.

Lu Ping looked at the unconscious Ocean Overturning Gang cultivator on the ground and said, "If only there was a secret technique to search his memories, maybe then we could get some information about the Ocean Overturning Gang."

Ji Zi-Xuan and Yin Zi-Chu both looked at each other, and Ji Zi-Xuan said, "Maybe Senior Sister Qi has a way."

Lu Ping followed the two towards Zhen Ling Sect's temporary hideout, and Lu Ping asked, "I heard that you two pushed back Xuan Ling Sect’s, Miao Wei-Dong, in a fight for a mystic treasure?"

Ji Zi-Xuan suddenly became excited, "Senior Brother Lu, you heard the news too? Looks like we're really going to be famous this time."

Lu Ping looked helplessly as Ji Zi-Xuan gloated, while Yin Zi-Chu remained silent.

Lu Ping asked, "You’ve been beaten so hard just now, why didn’t I see either of you casting the mystic treasure? If there is a mystic treasure, how will these Ocean Overturning Gang dare to be so rampant?"

When Ji Zi-Xuan heard that, his excitement collapsed, "Forget it, when we secured the mystic treasure, I already started refining it. But unexpectedly, my arcane energy and divine sense were almost all sucked up by the mystic treasure, yet I was only halfway through refining it.

"Since I still couldn’t refine it and use it to fight, it was taken away by Senior Sister Qi and given to a Ninth Layer Blood Condensation Realm senior brother, to enhance the sect’s prowess in the Heaven of Seven Stars. The mystic treasure will only be returned to me after we leave the Heaven of Seven Stars."

Lu Ping nodded with understanding, while not saying anything.

He thought to himself, It seems that the Ocean Overturning Gang also calculated that Ji Zi-Xuan is not strong enough to use the mystic treasure, so they dared to come. But they didn’t expect that the mystic treasure was not with Ji Zi-Xuan.

Fortunately, my arcane energy was so strong that I barely succeeded in refining the pestle mystic treasure. If I had let someone else refine it first and then return it to me after, it would take a long time to get rid of the other person's arcane energy before I could refine it with my own arcane energy, unless of course the other person died.

Not long later, the three of them regrouped with the rest of the Zhen Ling Sect cultivators. Unlike Ji Zi-Xuan, Yin Zi-Chu, and Lu Ping, who had come on their own, these Zhen Ling Sect cultivators were officially dispatched by the sect to explore the Heaven of Seven Stars.

The leader of this expedition, Qi Zi-Cai, of the North Ocean 18 Warriors, was a very capable woman in her late thirties. She had a tall and lean figure, a shrewd face, and wore a tight-fitting suit, emanating a very strong and aggressive presence. No wonder she was appointed as the leader.

After listening to Ji Zi-Xuan's story, Qi Zi-Cai glanced at Lu Ping, who was wearing the red-faced mask. She then turned to one of the two middle-aged men behind her, and said politely, "Senior Brother Cao, please take care of this Ocean Overturning Gang scum."

Senior Martial Brother Cao stepped forward with no expression, dragged the Ocean Overturning Gang cultivator across the ground, and walked to the back.

Lu Ping had already noticed these two middle-aged men behind Qi Zi-Cai. Although they were in the Ninth Layer Blood Condensation Realm, they had an obscure aura which felt like the unperceivable depths of abyss.

Lu Ping couldn’t help but quietly probed his divine sense to inspect the two. Senior Martial Brother Cao suddenly looked back at him with a smirk. Lu Ping was shocked and his heart pounded rapidly, it felt as if Senior Martial Brother Cao had seen through his thoughts.

When Lu Ping came back to his senses again, he saw Qi Zi-Cai and the second middle-aged cultivator, looking at him with a smile on their faces.

Lu Ping immediately knew that they had discovered his little actions, so he smiled awkwardly back at them.

Qi Zi-Cai giggled, "I met Xi Ling Island's Brother Ai Bo-Tao a few days ago. I heard him say that his third brother and junior brother had teamed up to defeat Hai Yan Sect’s, Peng Chang-Qing. Because of that, Ouyang Wei-Jian was able to take advantage of Peng Chang-Qing’s injuries. Junior Brother Lu’s return to the sect, before the opening of the Seven Star Palace, is truly a blessing. The sect’s strength has increased a little more now."

RD's Notes:

Weekly Chapters (2/5)
Editor: Immortal BloodRogue


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Written by SleepingAutumn. Translated by RD.