“You lost?” A surprised voice came from behind the curtain.
The voice was alluring and had a magnetic charm to it. It sounded like it could have either come from a woman or a gentle-sounding man.
“Tapio, you’ve already ascended the Third Stair of the Skyward Stairway and yet you still lost to James?”
Tapio knelt on the ground with a frustrated and helpless expression clouding over his pale face.
“I don’t know what kind of martial art James was practicing. Not only did his body suddenly take on a bronze sheen, but his defenses also increased exponentially. He had a sort of Energy Wall covering the surface of his body, and my sword could not penetrate it even after putting all my strength behind the strike. The Spiritual Palm could only damage him to the extent of coughing up blood.”
He paused and continued as he selected his next words carefully. “Prolonging the fight would only be detrimental to us both. Your instructions were to test him and not kill him, so I admitted defeat…”
The person behind the curtain remained silent.
After a few seconds of silence, the person behind the curtain finally spoke again, “Alright, I got it. You’re dismissed…”
Tapio stood up and asked, “Sect leader, what do you need me to do next?”
“You don’t have to do anything. Just wait for the time being. When chaos arises, we’ll step up to clean up the mess.”
“Alright…” Tapio turned and left.
A figure stood on the edge of a cliff deep in the dense forests of Mt. Thunder Pass.
This person was dressed in a baggy black coat, wore a hideous mask, and held a black sword in their hands.
It was none other than Thea.
After the battle between Tapio and James ended, Tapio made a hasty retreat. Thea also made a move and secretly followed Tapio.
She followed him but lost track of Tapio’s energy after arriving at her current location.
Standing on the cliff’s edge, she looked in front of her.
Ahead of her was a bottomless, fogbound chasm. The thick fog obscured her vision making it impossible for her to see what was beneath the cliff. She attempted to descend the cliff but discovered a Magic Circle beneath it.
When she tried to reach the bottom, she almost got caught in the Magic Circle and had no choice but to retreat. She stood on the edge and looked down pensively.
Tapio left the cavern and arrived at the bottom of the cliff.
As soon as he exited, he noticed something was amiss.
Someone has been here…
He scanned his surroundings.
The scenery was nothing out of the ordinary, but in actual fact was carefully arranged. When put together, it formed an Eight Trigram Formation that could trap even the strongest of martial artists.
Those who did not understand the Eight Trigram Formation would never be able to leave the trap.
Tapio quickly left with his brows furrowed sternly.
As soon as he reached the cliffside, he saw the masked Thea on the cliff edge.
Tapio was slightly taken aback by her presence but gathered his thoughts and walked over.
Standing ten meters away from Thea, his pale face was serious as he asked, “Are you the Sect Leader of Celestial Sect?”
Thea stared at Tapio and replied with a deep, hoarse voice, “That’s right…”
“Were you following me?” Tapio’s expression became increasingly grim.
He was cautious when he returned. He never expected anyone to tail him without him knowing.
Tapio was astonished that he could not sense Celestial Sect’s leader following him. He was at the peak of the eighth rank and had ascended the Third Stair of the Skyward Stairway. Although he was far from invincible, only a handful of people in Sol could defeat him. Yet, Celestial Sect’s leader managed to follow him undetected.
What was the identity of the Sect Leader of the Celestial Sect?
He had strong intelligence networks, and almost nothing could escape his notice. However, despite his efforts, he could not find out the identity of the Celestial Sect’s leader.
Thea did not reply Tapio’s question. She immediately drew her sword and pointed it at him.
The Malevolent Sword…
Tapio stared at Thea’s sword.