Chapter 598 – The Great Banyan Tree King
Yan Xixin, who belonged to the Hawkwolf guards, did not use any fancy tricks. He wore a set of shiny armour with a sword in one hand and a large, rectangular shield in the other to protect his entire body.
The surroundings had already gone from a wasteland to a glacier. The ice was over thirty meters thick, clearly to limit the scarred man’s earth element techniques.
Under these circumstances, not only would it take up tremendous amounts of spiritual energy for the scarred man to use earth element techniques, but they would also be nowhere near as effective as they were in the wasteland earlier either. Even the rate at which he recovered his spiritual qi slowed down slightly. He could only depend on the Earth Shattering Hammer of the Eight Directions to launch attacks.
Snow drifted through the air. Wind whistled wildly as the Earth Shattering Hammer of the Eight Directions tore through the beautiful landscape, swinging over. Not only was it vicious, but it was also startlingly fast under the simultaneous control of the scarred man’s soul sense and brute force.
Yan Xixin slid to the left, but he was still unable to escape from the range of the war hammer’s attack, so he tilted his huge shield slightly. With a great boom, pieces of ice were smashed into the air on his right side. They were all as sharp as blades, brushing past his body viciously. Fortunately, he had the armour to block it all.
The scarred man grunted as some of the power rebounded back at him.
Not only could the huge shield in Yan Xixin’s hand redirect most of his power, but it could also reflect a small part of it. That should not have been enough to cause him any real harm, but when Yan Xixin blocked the attack, he immediately slashed out with his sword.
Blood splattered from the scarred man’s shoulder. He let out a furious roar. A small wound like that was nothing, but the battle was extremely dissatisfying. He seemed to have gained the upper hand firmly, but he was unable to stop himself as he gradually slid towards the abyss of defeat.
His battle experience was extremely plentiful. He purposefully revealed openings many times to lure Yan Xixin into attacking, but Yan Xixin played it safe, completely unswayed by the bait. However, whenever the scarred man tried to recover, Yan Xixin would immediately press closer to him and pressure him.
The scarred man wielded the Earth Shattering Hammer of the Eight Directions even more violently than before, but everyone present could tell that the outcome of the duel had already been determined. Although Yan Xixin’s reactive fighting tactic was very safe, it was extremely reliable too, trumping over his opponent’s battle tactic extremely well. It took a far smaller toll on him compared to his opponent.
Si Qing said, “Yanying, so this is the trump card you managed to nurture!”
“I’m really not an expert in this aspect.”
Gu Yanying glanced at Si Bao with a smile. She was the true master at duels. Originally, she never anticipated Li Qingshan to return on time. Having arranged Qian Rongzhi and the other two, she was obviously relatively confident she could emerge victoriously, which was why she had agreed to these duels.
Wei Ke’s miserable defeat did leave her rather surprised. Fortunately, Qian Rongzhi had made up for his failures, while the true trump card was originally Yan Xixin. But now that she had Li Qingshan as a safeguard, there was even less reason for her to worry. She was confident that even if this guy faced all four of them, he would not lose.
Si Bao mockingly said, “Si Qing, it’s been so many years, yet you’re still so unskilled with duels. Advancing and retreating where necessary and able to both attack and block is the superior way. Battles tactics that involve momentary domination can only defeat weaker opponents. Once your offence is thwarted, all you can do is admit defeat.”
Li Qingshan agreed with her very much. In his past life, there was a saying with regards to soccer, “Offence sells tickets. Defence wins championships.” Fierce charges and attacks seemed intense and fascinating, but playing steadily and safely guaranteed victory.
He also began to reflect on the way he fought all this time. Had he been overly reliant on the tiger demon’s claws and fangs and neglected the profound shell of the spirit turtle? When he faced opponents of similar strength, it would often be very difficult to achieve victory in one fell swoop through a powerful attack. Instead, it would also require defence and patience.
Si Qing sneered and replied, “Pursuing victory mindlessly has already deviated from the true meaning of duels. I’ve always objected to your title as a dragon fighter. And, there’s no need to boast right now. The true outcome has yet to be determined!”
However, Yan Xixin won the round before long, but with his fighting style, he obviously could not take the opponent’s life. Just this aspect alone turned off Si Qing. When Qian Rongzhi had killed a powerful subordinate of his, he praised her ecstatically, but now that the scarred man had emerged alive, there was not even a hint of joy on his face. He completely disapproved of Yan Xixin too.
Li Qingshan smiled inside and thought, I couldn’t tell, but this guy is so enthusiastic about this! Even going on about some true meaning of duels!
He did not know that many people in the Dragon province were like this. Duels had already become sacred. There were not a lot of people who did whatever it took just to achieve victory.
The battleground of the third duel had already changed to an extremely dark and thick forest. The huge trees plunged into the sky like skyscrapers, unbelievably large and thick. Their broad, dark-green leaves blotted out the sun in the sky.
The ground was completely covered in roots. Aerial roots dangled down in the air as verdant snake-like vines coiled around the vegetation in the thick, milk-like mist. And, if someone paid attention to them, they would discover they squirmed about.
Li Qingshan had also witnessed the lushness of tropical rainforests in his past life, but compared to this jungle, it was basically comparing a child to a giant.
A cultivator as skinny and small as a dwarf moved between the trees as swiftly as the wind under the shrouding of mist and darkness. Not only did he conceal all of his aura, but his figure had completely merged with the surroundings.
If they had not been spectating from the outside, where their viewing angle was locked onto the fighters at all times, probably even a moment of negligence would be enough to lose sight of him. No one knew whether it was because of his arcane artifacts or because of the wonders of his cultivation method. Perhaps, it was a combination of both.
An environment like this was without a doubt an assassin’s paradise, and the dwarf was the strongest assassin.
“I specially collected this rainforest from the Mist province. It contains a part of the Great Banyan Tree King’s roots.”
Si Qing said proudly. The value of Dragon Arenas was not completely inherent. Instead, it also depended on the special and peculiar battlegrounds collected. It was like stamp collectors gathering precious stamps one by one, finding great pleasure throughout the entire process.
The Great Banyan Tree King!
Li Qingshan’s mind shuddered. He had heard about him, one of the Ten Daemon Kings, greatest Daemon King of the Mist province, a long time ago. How had Si Qing of all people managed to collect a part of his roots?
Si Bao said, “You’re merely taking advantage of the tree king’s mild nature. Since you’ve come to the Green province now, are you bold enough to touch even a scale on the dragon king?”
Gu Yanying took a sip of alcohol and smiled. “The tree king’s roots span thousands of kilometers. Who knows how many creatures depend on them, so gathering a root or two is nothing special at all. However, since something special like that exists, this battleground definitely won’t be a regular battleground.”
“That’s right. If you can find the Great Banyan Tree King’s roots and drink its sap, then you can rapidly recover your spiritual qi. And, it’ll fill you with energy as if you’ve just set foot into the arena.”
Conversations outside originally could not be heard within the Dragon Arena, but Si Qing’s voice rang out clearly in the rainforest so that both fighters knew about this, ensuring the fairness of the duel.
Li Qingshan felt even more shocked. Although banyan trees had the reputation of being able to grow into a forest from a single tree, just how large was the Great Banyan Tree King to span thousands of kilometers?
He frowned and said, “Isn’t this unfair then? The forest is so thick. Your people will obviously be extremely familiar with the Great Banyan Tree King’s root, but how are we supposed to distinguish it?”
“You won’t be able to miss it as long as you have eyes.”
Si Qing laughed aloud. With a wave of his hand, the depicted scenery departed from the two fighters, rising high into the air and overlooking the entire rainforest from the Mist province. All he saw was a huge, towering tree jutting out of the forest, even taller than those trees that resembled skyscrapers. The crown of the tree was like a cloud, blotting out the sky. It was the reason why the rainforest was so dark.
E Dan even sneered. “Bumpkin!”
Li Qingshan could not be bothered with arguing with him. He widened his eyes and gazed at the towering tree as he thought, And they only call this a root? What’s his main body like then? He found it even more difficult to imagine how majestic the Great Banyan Tree King would be.
The determining factor of this duel was clearly who could obtain more tree sap from this “root”.
Yan Xixin flew out of the sea of trees immediately and grasped his bearings, rushing towards the towering tree in the centre. Meanwhile, the dwarf darted through the forest, moving even faster than him. He arrived near the giant tree, but he did not get any closer. Instead, he lurked near a path where Yan Xixin would definitely pass by to launch an ambush.
Si Qing continued, “The Great Banyan Tree King’s root is gentle. It won’t even fight back when it’s damaged. However, the sun vines on him aren’t so easy to deal with.”
Yan Xixin shivered inside. Sure enough, withered, yellow vines coiled around the huge tree. Apart from being extremely thick, there was nothing particularly conspicuous about them. However, there were plenty of dangerous, carnivorous plants among the rainforest of the Mist province that stretched fifty thousand kilometers. Among them, sun vines possessed the greatest infamy.
If cultivators became entangled by them, they would completely go numb, and in the blink of an eye, their cultivation would leak away completely, followed by their vitality. It was rumored that even their souls would not be able to escape in the end, trapped in the sun vines forever.
Sun vines normally only grew on the roots of the Great Banyan Tree King. Only the Great Banyan Tree King could support them permanently. If other trees became entwined, they would wither away very quickly.
As Yan Xixin contemplated what he would do, a black figure darted out of the sea of trees, moving like lightning. He had remained vigilant the entire time, so he immediately blocked with his huge shield. With a clang, the two of them brushed past one another, and a mark appeared on the shield.
He was secretly surprised, This dwarf moves far too quickly, so quickly that I actually struggle to determine where his attacks come from, so I can’t rebound his attacks.
The two of them clashed in the air. The dwarf’s attacks were swift and sharp, but Yan Xixin held his ground firmly. He could not be defeated so easily. He thought, In order to maintain this speed and attack, it’ll definitely take a larger toll on him than me.
But a while later, the dwarf suddenly shot backwards towards the towering tree. The withered, yellow vines suddenly sprang alive, extending towards the dwarf madly and becoming dancing dragons and snakes.
The dwarf used his startling speed to maneuver wildly between the sun vines. There had been multiple times when he was almost caught. He had to pull in his body violently in order to dodge.
His figure was already different from a regular person’s, so he was like a ball when he pulled himself in, launching towards the huge tree. With a flash of light in his hand, he cut through the thick tree bark and jade-green tree sap spurted out, landing in his mouth. Immediately, he riled up with vigour, and his spiritual energy recovered completely. Then, he launched himself out again, leaving the giant tree to continue his battle with Yan Xixin.
From beginning to end, he had not stopped for even a second.