Chapter 11 - Forgive me, Brother!
Atop Zephyr Tower, those seated stood up in shock. Their eyes were glued to Zephyr Square, looks of disbelief written across their faces.
“How could that be? Didn’t Li Tianming lose all his beast ki?”
“Three years, that’s enough to end any beastmaster’s career!”
“But Zifeng is seventh level Beast Vein!”
“Did Li Tianming use some kind of dirty trick?!” Madam Mo had a stern look on her face.
Li Tianming, the joke of Flamehaven, the boy that everyone thought would be gone for good, had returned with power that matched Li Zifeng’s? So his appearance today really wasn’t a joke! Probably the only one whose jaw didn’t drop was Madam Huang, who had already seen what Li Tianming was capable of beforehand.
Even Li Xuejiao couldn’t hide her surprise. After all, she wanted her second brother to teach Li Tianming a lesson on her behalf, but the tables had turned.
“Oh? Interesting. He probably recovered a while ago and was hiding it the entire time.” The corners of Liu Qing’s lips curled upwards.
“He must have found a new lifebound beast to prevent the loss of his beast ki. Too bad it is but a worthless one-star lifebound beast — he can never go beyond the beast vein stage.” The chain of events threw Li Yanfeng off guard as well, but he immediately managed to find an explanation for it. If Li Tianming had made use of sacrificial techniques to find a new lifebound beast the moment he returned to Flamehaven, then it was true that he could somewhat stop the dissipation of his beast ki, thereby preserving a certain amount of strength.
But the people of Flamehaven didn’t understand the reason behind all these, as evidenced by how they gawked at the brothers. As a result, being the one with the lower hand, Li Zifeng was almost driven crazy.
Malice twisted his face as Li Zifeng drew out a sword. It was a vicious steel sword, crafted with top quality spirit ores and infused with the blood of lifebound beasts. These kinds of weapons were known as beastial weapons, and were far more powerful than regular weapons, especially in the hands of beastmasters. On top of that, beastial weapons could also synergise with lifebound beasts.
“This Blue Steel Sword has yet to drink your blood before.” Li Zifeng pointed his sword at Li Tianming. He had underestimated his opponent, and he would not let that happen again.
“And my Crimson Blood Dagger was never meant to drink the blood of my own brothers, but I guess there are always exceptions to everything.” Li Tianming drew a scarlet dagger from his sleeve. It was about fifteen centimeters long, with a blade the length of his finger. The entire body of the dagger was a bloody red, making it look like the fangs of a venomous snake.
In terms of weapon quality, the Crimson Blood Dagger was just as good as the Blue Steel Sword. It had been Li Tianming’s weapon for a long time, being able to kill in a single deadly blow. And yet, who could have imagined that the brothers would point at each other with real blades in hand, aiming for the other’s life?
“Why did you come here to shame yourself? With your one-star lifebound beast, you are just some garbage stuck in Beast Vein. Once I get the Flameyellow Order, I will be so powerful that you'll grovel at my feet three years from now!”
As he spoke, Li Zifeng swung his Blue Steel Sword, his steps suddenly increasing in speed. This was the intermediate beast-ranked battle art, the Wind-Riding Steps, which greatly increased his agility. But even that paled in comparison to the sword arts he was using. As the sword danced in the air, it was clear that he was using the Blazing Tornado Sword from the Li Manor, an advanced beast-ranked battle art!
With the Blazing Tornado Sword, Li Zifeng had created a gust of wind, the sword hidden within the gale as it swung towards Li Tianming. At the same time, the Purple-Eyed Bright Bird had also used the beastial art of Blazing Tornado Wings to sweep up a cyclone, its wings now like two giant knives that swept towards the chick!
The battlefield was divided into two, but both sides were just as exciting!
“DIE FOR ME!” Li Zifeng screamed.
His sword struck from multiple directions, stirring up a wave of flame that surrounded Li Tianming. A vortex of flame engulfed Li Tianming, its interior brimming with countless strands of sword ki that threatened to tear Li Tianming apart!
This move was a true reflection of Li Zifeng’s strength, as no one under the seventh level of the beast vein stage could possibly block it! The heat emanating from the tornado of flames alone was enough to burn most people to a crisp.
“Are you dead yet? Li Tianming! You’re just a stray dog that should have died long ago, so stop haunting me!” Li Zifeng was already in a state of frenzy.
Confidence surged within him as he watched his Blazing Tornado Sword swallow Li Tianming, which swiftly gave way to fear as he realised something.
Where was Li Tianming?
“You are right, I am here to haunt you.” Li Zifeng felt a chill run down his spine as a voice spoke from right beside his ears. He froze as hot metal rested on his neck, daring him to move an inch.
By now, the audience could see that Li Tianming had already appeared behind Li Zifeng, his Crimson Blood Dagger pressed right against Li Zifeng’s throat. If he so willed it, Li Zifeng would have perished!
In fact, Ghost Steps wasn’t the only thing that got Li Tianming there. There was another trick up his sleeve that had decided his fate. It was a supreme beast-ranked battle art, the Bloody Soul Hunt!
It was the strongest battle art that Li Tianming practiced, and was meant to be used with the Crimson Blood Dagger. As the pinnacle of beast-ranked battle arts, few had succeeded in mastering it. It wasn’t an offensive battle art, but a cross between a movement art and assassination art. Fast! Precise! The essence was to strike like lightning at the perfect instant to bring death to its opponents. It might not appear much, but Li Tianming had to practice it thousands of times a day just to achieve the effect of a one shot kill.
Psss! Without hesitation, Li Tianming sliced the dagger across Li Zifeng’s arms, causing blood to spurt out.
“AHH!” Beads of sweat popped out of Li Zifeng’s forehead as he trembled uncontrollably.
“Zifeng, you shall pay for all your insults and your mockery! Now take this!” Li Tianming’s voice was like a demon’s and with each sentence, the Crimson Blood Dagger drew a new line on Li Zifeng’s body, the latter shrieking in pain the entire time.
“All the acts you have done, all the crimes you have committed, do you really think no one knew about them? They just didn’t dare to touch you because you had Li Yanfeng as your backer!” As a matter of fact, Li Tianming wanted to teach Li Zifeng a lesson a long time ago. During the three years of his absence, there was no one controlling Li Zifeng, who went on to do whatever he wanted in Flamehaven. Despite committing a mountain of malicious deeds, his talent and family had enabled him to elude retribution.
“If your father is not going to teach you about basic manners, then I will do it!”
“Just because you’re the governor’s son doesn’t mean you can look down on others!”
“This elder brother will today teach you the meaning of everyone is born equal!”
“Today, I’ll teach you how to spell ‘karma’!”
“This slash, do you like it?!”
With each sentence he said, Li Tianming landed a new slash on Li Zifeng, slashes that were intended to cause great pain without creating lethal wounds. In total, he lashed out six times on his limbs and butt cheeks.
“Forgive me brother, I learnt my lesson, please release me! DAD, MUM, HELP ME!” Li Zifeng howled miserably, his face paler than paper. His Blue Steel Sword had long fallen from his hands, completing a picture of a one-sided defeat. No one possibly expected this battle to be so one-sided!
The image of the youth standing on the stage had already created a lasting image in everybody’s mind, but that wasn’t all. Even more terrifying the sight of a blood soaked huge bird dropping on the ground as Li Zifeng capitulated. It was none other than the Purple-Eyed Bright Bird! As the Purple-Eyed Bright Bird struggled feebly a little chick landed beside it, its mouth stuffed with feathers.
“You stupid stinking bird, do you know how to take a shower? Even your feathers are so damn smelly!” The little chick shuddered as it spat out the feathers in its mouth, gagging and dry-heaving the entire time.
How could a cute little thing like this gravely injure the Purple-Eyed Bright Bird over ten times its size? Was it even possible for a one-star lifebound beast?
An irritated Li Tianming, a blood stained Crimson Blood Dagger and a grumbling little chick. The governor’s manor sank into an unprecedented, awed silence from their very presence.