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 Season 4

Episode 82

(The Sword Step)

Kim stood tall and solemn like a mountain.   

  To help himself stand out among the hoard of talented disciples at Jade Peak, and to rank the second place among the inner disciples, he had made an awful lot of efforts and sacrifices.     

Frankly, he didn't hold any special talents. He was slower to learn martial arts than the others, who had strong comprehension abilities. However, he managed to surpass the brilliant minds at the peak and brought laurels to his name. It was the fruit of his tough labor.     
Step by step, his strength had improved steadily. However, he seldom got angry and never belittled anyone.     

A good head on his shoulders along with the great efforts he put in enabled him to be a hundred times stronger than the so-called geniuses.   

Unbinding the spear on his back, Kim clutched it, saying in a cold voice, "Start the battle, and you will know if my strength is sufficient to force you to draw your sword. But let me state beforehand: I won't hold myself back even if you don't use your sword."   

 Rocher nodded at him. "Of course. In the battlefield, you should be in top form. I refuse to use my sword against you, though. I'm about to face many other competitors ahead, disciples much more powerful than you. My sword will be out when I fight them."   

 In truth, Rocher didn't want to draw his sword not because he looked down upon his opponents, but because he valued them.     

The All Peaks Competition tested not only the candidates' strength, but also their endurance and strategy.     

At the consummation of the natural level, Rocher possessed comparatively more strength than the others, but there was always a chance of encountering better competitors he had overlooked. 

Obviously, he wanted to come first in the contest. He wondered what levels his other opponents would be on.   

Throughout the years, a number of genius disciples had attracted attention at the All Peaks Competition. There was Yan Luo in the last round, Humm Xu in the one before that, and Jakob Lou even before. But how many of them could be labeled competent enough to win the championship?   

  Only a few! In addition to the disciples belonging to the thirty-three peaks, there were personal disciples participating in the competition, who possessed more power and strength. Guided by famous masters, the personal disciples were obviously hard to beat. In the previous competitions, the top twenty spots had often been snatched by them, along with an odd rare genius or two.     

Kim gave him a curt nod and stepped forward. As his foot hit the ground, an invisible wave rose up to spread around him. He tipped his arm, and the cusp of the spear in his hand flew out like a spirited dragon.     

His startling, mountain-like momentum rushed out along the cusp.   

Kim's body, meanwhile, began to expand more and more, until finally it was as tall as Mount Tai. The spear in his hand looked like a spiraled dragon.     

"Dragons in the Air!     

Come on!"    

As he spoke, beams of life vitality rushed out and swirled around the spear. Seen up close, several vague forms of dragons—transformed by the life vitality—were discovered gyrating around it.    

 His first move was exceptional.     

Just as Kim said, he didn't hold back because Rocher was at the consummation of the natural level. Instead, he put in his best, just like he always had in life.     

"Dragons in the Air was powerful! How will Rocher defend this?"    

"Honestly, it's impossible for Rocher to defend himself without his sword. The Dragon Spear Techniques that Kim just displayed has two subsequent attacks: first to shoot and then to burn the life vitality. Kim has only performed the first so far and it is already bewildering. What if he burned his life vitality too? It would have unimaginable consequences! 

Rocher intends to face all of this bare-handed? It would be a disaster!"  

Kim's display of strength brought Rocher out of his state of mental repose. He now grew anxious. Moving aside speedily, he tried to dodge the attack.  

   "Trying to escape? Do you consider my Dragons in the Air so easy to run from?" Kim held the ten-foot, one hundred-pound spear in one hand. For a moment, it seemed as if it was a part of Kim's body, unusually flexible. No matter how hard Rocher tried to avoid it, its cusp would always be pointed in his direction. The distance between them was decreasing by the second.     

So far, Rocher was unable to avoid it.     Suddenly, he performed a set of strange footwork.     

Body skills and step skills could be of several types. Some were focused on flexibility, like A Hundred Steps in Maze. Some were complicated, bewildering and dizzy, such as Dainty Steps above Waves. However, whichever one Rocher resorted to among these, he was unable to escape Kim's spear cusp.   

The spear technique Kim performed was steady, an unbeatable rival for radical and strategic moves.     

Rocher's step skill, however, was special. Whenever he moved, a faint shadow of a sword took shape, pointing in a certain direction. He kept moving accordingly and with perfect speed in order to dodge Kim's spear.     

"Sword Step! That's the Sword Step! Rocher has grasped the Sword Step!" someone shouted from the sidelines.    

 "My God! It's actually the Sword Step! Rocher is amazing! He hasn't even drawn his sword so far. How strong is he? With his Sword Step alone, he has proven himself superior to ninety-nine percent of the disciples at Cloud Sect!" another exclaimed.   

  The Sword Step was a unique step skill—the length of each step of a performer was exactly equal to that of their sword.     

Since the step's length was predetermined, the Sword Step suffered a loss in flexibility. However, one's Sword Step could especially manifest itself out of one's own sword intent. If someone could grasp their sword intent well enough, their movements would become much faster than those of the average body.


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