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 Season 4

Episode 84

(The crude Imitation(1)

Because of the multiple complex moves, it was nearly impossible to master the Sword Step in such a short time. It didn't matter how many times Rocher demonstrated before him, Yehudi would probably not be able to remember how to do it.     

So, it was surprising how rapid Zen became proficient by mimicking Rocher's Sword Steps, and as if he were born with the Sword Step skills, Zen moved faster and faster.   

Looking at the battle ring, Yehudi saw that Zen's steps were almost identical to Rocher's Sword Steps...     

'Is this guy even human?' wondered Yehudi silently.     

Zen's abilities stunned Yehudi. It wasn't surprising that Zen was able to beat the other opponents. After all, Zen earned over fifty thousand points during his assessment, so, Yehudi was aware that Zen was more adept than he was in combat.   

However, as he witnessed Zen learn a skill that Rocher was most proud to have mastered, the Sword Step, that quickly, Yehudi was surprised. Zen had an unusual talent to be able to grasp the technique off the cuff as he did.   

Just then, hearing a loud roar from the battle ring, Yehudi turned his head.    

 By now the battle between Rocher and Kim was in full swing.     

Rocher had Kim pinned down using only his Sword Step.    

 Kim had been repressing his temper, and he was usually as sedate as a mountain when he didn't quickly erupt, but once he did, it was as volatile as a volcano, leaving his opponent to face the fire of his volcanic eruption!     

"Dragon Shadow Kill!"  


Along with the loud noise, several faint dragon images on Kim's spear came to life at the same time. They encircled the spear and penetrated the tip. All of Kim's life vitality was, in fact, compressed into about a footlong area of the spearpoint which altered its glow from the silver it shimmered to glinting in the sunlight.   

Kim lunged, thrusting the life vitality imbued spear at Rocher.     

Rocher was racing, and dodging, at an incredible speed around the ring, as he pushed the moves of his Sword Step method to its maximum. The shadows cast by Rocher's rapid speed might make disciples who were at lower levels believe over a dozen Rochers were in the ring now.     

Additionally, because his legs were moving so fast it gave the illusion that Rocher was gliding across the field as though he were ice skating.     

With his rival racing at such an impossible velocity around him, Kim was feeling dizzy and groaned inwardly. He couldn't even see Rocher now.     

While the Dragon Shadow Kill move was formidable, it would be useless if he couldn't impale his adversary.     

Kim thrust, but, his spear missed the target.   

It was as though Rocher was a ghost, and as Kim's spear impaled the air where Rocher had been seconds before, Rocher darted behind Kim, and touched Kim's back with two fingers.     

When a swordsman understood sword intent fully, he could manipulate even flowers or trees as though they were swords. So, the fingers Rocher rested against Kim's back were just like a sword which left Kim with the choice to either struggle hopelessly, or admit defeat.    

 However, the All Peaks Competition wasn't a duel to the death. And although it was a difficult blow to lose, where there was life, there was hope. Kim knew Rocher was quite talented and that it wasn't possible to win against him. Therefore, on weighing his options, Kim reluctantly admitted defeat.     

After the match ended, Zen stopped practicing the Sword Step. He had a rudimentary grasp of it now, and was ready to incorporate it in real combat.     The bouts in the ring continued, with a winner and loser for each round, until it was Zen's turn.   

"Next up will be Zen Luo of Drizzle Peak against Cecil Zhuge of Skywrath Peak!"    'Cecil Zhuge of Skywrath Peak?' 

speculated Zen. 'Could he be a member of the noble Zhuge Clan?' A look of confusion flashed across Zen's face, and just as quick, it was once more an unreadable expression. He had feuded members of the Zhuge Clan for a long time, but it hadn't crossed his mind that Cecil Zhuge would be his foe in today's competition.     

"What?! Cecil Zhuge of the Illuminating Soul Realm! What rotten luck for you Zen. If you can't win, it'd be okay to yield now because one loss isn't important to group competitions anyway...." It wasn't the first time Zen heard these words from Master Wen, and although Master Wen didn't want to heap praise on their enemy or make light of his talents, it was still lousy luck that Zen was matched against a practitioner in the Illuminating Soul Realm.     

Almost every disciple of the Illuminating Soul Realm was among the top one hundred disciples, including Cecil Zhuge, who was ranked somewhere near number eighty-three!   

Between the start of the competition and that moment, there hadn't been many surprises where members of the Illuminating Soul Realm were concerned. 

After all, the disciples from the Illuminating Soul Realm refined at a level far superior to any of the Cloud Sect's disciples who were in the nature level. With the exception of Rocher's victory, so far, such mismatched battles led to disciples of the Illuminating Soul Realm winning. But, Rocher's talent was well-known, so his performance wasn't really surprising.     

Master Yu gloated when he heard the announcement that Zen's opponent would be Cecil Zhuge of the Illuminating Soul Realm because he despised Zen for nearly killing a Blackrock Peak disciple, Mack. "Humph! Well, now we'll just see how the little rat-refiner practicing at the second grade of nature level holds up against a disciple of the Illuminating Soul Realm!"   

 A little rat-refiner at the second grade of nature level...     

So far, during today's All Peaks Competition, Zen was the winner in all the matches he was in, and the general opinion was that it was due, in part, to his good fortune.

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