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"Everyone, at the request of our guests, we are now switching the main camera to the test room for the No. 23 group. Contestant Li Yao's magical equipment is about to be examined. His performance during the refining was indeed an eye-opener for us all! What surprises will his magical equipment offer us?
"Judging from the appearance, Contestant Li Yao's magical equipment is rather plain. There is not the slightest trace of spiritual waves. It does not look like a piece of magical equipment, but a regular sword!
"Now, the artificial arm has transmitted the spiritual energy into the sword!
"Odd. Contestant Li Yao's chainsword has no reaction whatsoever. There are no signs that the rune arrays are activated, either. Did the refining failed?"
Inside the test room, Li Yao's chainsword was raised high and slashed at the target in the front.
During the entire process, there were neither waves nor electric arcs. It seemed to be the most typical heavy blade.
However, when the sword approached the spiritual shield of the target, the tip of the sword quickly shivered, as if it was feeling cold.
After the shiver, the spiritual shield was breached through without counterattacking at all. The sword seemed to have 'blinked' into the spiritual shield.
The chainsword penetrated into the crystal gel.
The damage jumped out on the light beam: 99 crystals!
"An acceptable result."
The host was clearly disappointed. He commented drily, "Contestant Li Yao's chainsword has dealt a damage of 99 crystals. It is very close to a hundred. Not entirely a bad—"
Before he could finish his observation, abrupt changes took place. A cl.u.s.ter of dazzling brilliance burst out suddenly deep inside the crystal gel. A formless blade had marched forward inside the crystal gel!
On the light beam, the figure changed. It leapt from 99 crystals to 141 crystals instantly!
Somebody seemed to have kicked the host right in his loins. He exclaimed at the loudest voice, "Not 99 crystals, but 141 crystals! Contestant Li Yao has blown out a damage of 141 crystals! It is only secondary to Mo Tianshui's and Huangpu Xiaoya's, and ranks third in this subject!
"His chainsword has preserved all the spiritual energy in a very delicate way and didn't unleash it until the blade was deep inside the target's body. It would be able to deal much more devastating internal injuries this way!
"Contestant Li Yao is indeed the biggest surprise of the Skyhill Sword Seminar this year! I wonder, will his next two pieces of magical equipment amaze us as well?"
The spectators who were seething with excitement burst into an even messier riot!
"141 crystals? Are you kidding me? So close to the results of the talented heirs?"
"They are the only three who have improved the damage of the chainsword to above 120 crystals. Other people have been left behind far away!"
"Which one is Li Yao? Let me see!"
Long Yunxin and Zhou Xiaoyu, who were at loggerheads with each other, seemed to have been struck by lightning at the same time. They turned around stiffly and stared at Li Yao in dazed disbelief.
They all knew themselves well. Their chainswords wouldn't have a damage higher than 120 crystals, which meant that there was at least a gap of 20 crystals between Li Yao and them. The following subjects would be unnecessary!
What, what was this all about?
The two 'old nemeses' hadn't sorted out their grudges yet, and the Mr. n.o.body from a remote area was about to eliminate the two of them. Should they just go home now?
Li Yao was still concentrated. The roars and exclamations inside the field and in the stands, as well as the shocked eyes of the audience, had no influence on him at all. He waited for the results of the last two subjects patiently.
Forging swords was not what he was best at.
What he liked most were sabers.
When Long Yunxin and Zhou Xiaoyu were back to themselves after their astonishment subsided and looking back at the light beam again, the aura of Li Yao's saber was brushing the target of crystal gel like a phantom.
But nothing seemed to have happened to the target. The reading on the light beam was frozen at '0', too.
Black brightness was spreading in the bottom of his eyes. He put on a satisfied smile.
One second later, the target of crystal gel slightly trembled. The upper half of the target leaned leftwards, slid down and fell off to the ground. A section as smooth as mirror was left on the target!
What a fast sword!
It was not until this moment that the reading on the light beam bounced crazily like a rabbit that had just been stabbed.
The damage of Li Yao's vibration saber—201 crystals!
There was nothing but dead silence inside the field. It was even quieter than a grave that had been abandoned for a hundred years.
If the audience was crazy about Li Yao's chainsword's performance, then the terrifying result that outshone the two talented heirs and left everyone else far behind had frozen every spectator's voice, as if the sharp blade had cut into their necks and slashed their vocal cords in half!
It was not until ten seconds later that the host bellowed, "What did I see? What did I see? In the subject of vibration saber, Contestant Li Yao has blown out a damage of more than 200 crystals! Even Mo Tianshui and Huangpu Xiaoya were completely surpa.s.sed!
"The previously-unknown young man from the edge of the sea of stars is definitely the king of sabers of the Skyhill Sword Seminar this year, no, over the last ten years."
His cry completely battered the frozen ambience.
Volcanoes seemed to be erupting inside the field and out. Magma was spurting in the crowds. Both the common audience and the experts were bubbling with excitement. All the students in the two Refining Departments of the two supreme colleges who were working as volunteers jumped to their feet, too, while they were letting out meaningless yet thrilled cries.
Not far away, in the other two workshops, Mo Tianshui and Huangpu Xiaoya stared at the light beam in disbelief. Their faces were frozen for a long time before they gradually melted.
The two talented successors squinted and recited the name.
The heat axe test, which followed, was not as impressive as that for the vibration saber, but Li Yao still secured third place.
Based on the glamorous performance of the vibration saber, the acc.u.mulated damage of his three pieces of magical equipment had reached 503 crystals, parallel to Mo Tianshui's score and only 3 crystals fewer than Huangpu Xiaoya's. The three horses const.i.tuted the tantalizing first echelon and galloped forward!
Long Yunxin and Zhou Xiaoyu were both dumbfounded.
Although their tests had begun, they were not interested in the result any longer because they had been eliminated!
An hour later, all the magical equipment had been tested. The top 32 players of this Skyhill Sword Seminar had been determined and teleported to the central hall of the honeycomb-like refining center!
The top 32 players were almost exclusively heirs of the n.o.ble families or well-known celebrities in the circle of refiners. Li Yao was the only stranger there and did not seem to fit the environment.
But everyone was looking at him in shock and fear.
Dozens of crystal cameras were flying in the air, capturing the images of the top 32 players and sending them to the light beams inside the field and out.
Most of the cameras, however, were focused on Li Yao.
"Is he Li Yao?"
"He looks rather plain. There are no signs of him being an expert. Though, his eyes are indeed intimidating!"
"How was he doing his refining a moment ago? The skin on his hands has all broken apart!"
Many spectators grew interested in Li Yao.
For the regular audience, Li Yao, as a mysterious young man from the edge of the sea of stars, was apparently much more eye-catching than the talented heirs of the two n.o.ble families of refining.
The experts and scholars were quickly searching files and looking into the schools of refining that had been lost during the last hundreds of years.
However, the universe was too large a place. There were more schools that had gone extinct in the Flying Star Sector than anybody could count. n.o.body could say for sure which one Li Yao belonged to.
"Everyone, the top 32 players have been selected after a day of fierce compet.i.tions. Tomorrow, the more thrilling elimination matches will be held! Right now, the most exciting procedure of the day is about to begin. The match partners of the top 32 players tomorrow will be settled randomly!
"There is no concept of 'seeded players' among the top 32 players. It is quite possible that Mo Tianshui and Huangpu Xiaoya will run into each other in the very first match!
"Now comes the big moment!"
On the giant light beam, the names of the 32 players turned into streaks of gold brightness instantly and span crazily.
After half a minute of spinning, the streaks were thrown out of the swirl one after another to the two sides of the light beam.
One minute later, the 32 streaks were cla.s.sified into 16 groups. Two names were placed in a line and paired with each other!
All the spectators gasped.
"The match table for the top 32 players is out. An unexpected surprise has indeed happened! Mo Tianshui, one of the two favorites as well as the strongest heir of a n.o.ble family of the refining, is about to crash into Li Yao, the mysterious refiner from the periphery of the sea of stars!
"Yes. Mo Tianshui versus Li Yao. It's going to be the first match tomorrow!"
The result stirred the minds of everyone watching the Skyhill Sword Seminar like a hurricane.
One of them was the talented heir of a n.o.ble family that had lasted for hundreds of years, while the other was an expert from the countryside who had risen to fame miraculously. What kind of sparks would break out when they collided?
Li Yao and Mo Tianshui, on the other hand, seemed to be in the center of the tornado; they were not affected at all.
Amid the whispers, Mo Tianshui walked over to Li Yao.
He was a man of manners. Despite the high-intensity refining work that had gone on for five hours, he was as graceful as when the matches had begun. He seemed to have just paced out of a mottled ancient painting.
His eyes, which were as deep and vast as an ocean, stopped at Li Yao's bruised hands for a long time, before they were moved to the stranger's face. He looked at him with great interest.
"Mo Tianshui, of the main bloodline of the Mo Family, from Tongye City in the Hidden Mountain Domain. May I have the privilege?" Mo Tianshui smiled and asked about Li Yao's background in the ancient way.
"Li Yao, of the Li family," said Li Yao briefly, who focused his eyes on Mo Tianshui's hands, too.
Mo Tianshui raised an eyebrow. There was a moment of confusion in his eyes.
He had thought of all the n.o.ble refining families of the Flying Star Sector quickly and came up with no 'Li family' that was worth mentioning.
He asked unconsciously, "Which Li family?"
Li Yao retreated his gaze and walked past Mo Tianshui to the teleportation array leading to his personal chamber.
As he pa.s.sed by, he said, "The Li family that has me."