The Eternal Sanctum - Chapter 17
Two palms collided, one slightly advanced in physical age and dotted with several wrinkles, the other pristine of youth and maturity.
One belonged to an emperor, the other a third-ranking minister.
One palm embodied a deep scarlet light, the other a fleeting silver.
Other than the explosion of light and the shockwaves of which the emperor and minister had revealed their aura, the interior of the Imperial Court was tranquil and serene. The only break of silence was the strike of flesh, followed by the twinkling and shattering of the various objects strewn around the Imperial Court.
The two palms pressed tightly against one another, the respective glows of scarlet and silver having disappeared, the flash of spiritual essence no longer present following the collision.
“How dare you! Striking against the emperor!”
The emperor cried with anger, his countenance distorted with rage.
Wei Xuan remained silent, instead opting to raise his left hand. Drawing it back to be level with his chin, the minister soundlessly whispered as the palm soared forth towards the emperor’s face.
Just several chi before the emperor’s enraged countenance, the minister’s wrist rotated towards the left, the fingers clenching into a tight fist as dense streams of silver light coalesced over the knuckles.
“Look! That’s Fellow Wei’s trademark <Silver River> cultivation technique. That fluidity and speed, does it mean that Fellow Wei had surpassed the Initial Three Points of martial arts techniques?”
An official commented, his beady eyes refusing to remove themselves from the streams of light wrapping around Wei Xuan’s left wrist.
Greatly alarmed, the emperor flinched as he similarly raised his left arm, crossing his palm over to the right to intercept the incoming attack.
Watching the palm transform into a fist, the emperor grit his teeth before extending his fingers into a loose grip, scarlet light encasing the webbing between the individual digits.
The instant the palm contacted the fist, the emperor’s fingers latched onto Wei Xuan’s hand with a vice-like grip, stopping and trapping the blow without allowing the force to evenly disperse.
Seeing such a scene, the spectating officials couldn’t help but sigh in admiration, but soon transformed into gaping looks of shock.
“Hey…that’s too brutal…and far too offensive as a slight to the emperor, much less anybody…” an official whispered, daring not to convey his thoughts audibly.
With the realization that they were locked in a standstill, the spiritual essence contained within successfully circumvented, the minister frowned for a moment before a roguish expression crossed his countenance.
Without permitting the emperor to disengage his hands to defend himself, Wei Xuan channeled a copious quantity of silver-colored spiritual essence into his right knee, bringing it upwards in a vicious attack.
His target was naturally the emperor’s crown jewels, and the latter was thoroughly incensed, his pupils flaring in his anger.
“Wei Xuan, you dare!” the emperor growled as he guessed the minister’s intention. Knitting his brows, the emperor willed the spiritual essence concealed within his body to rush towards Wei Xuan using his arms as the conduit, creating a massive torrent of spiritual essence to wash over the Imperial Court.
Bathed in the pulse of scarlet light, the minister as well as all two hundred and ninety-nine officials were sent stumbling backwards, each backpedaling for at least several meters before they could regain balance.
Rubbing his abdomen as cold sweat dotted his brow, the emperor showered Wei Xuan with a scathing glower, to of which the minister merely responded with a light smile.
“You, ah,” the emperor complained with a terrible expression.
“Venting your frustration is acceptable, but is it truly necessary to go after this one’s lineage?”
“This minister had no intention,” Wei Xuan replied in an even tone, a mischievous glint concealed behind an admiring gaze.
“This one was simply worried about touching His Imperial Majesty’s dragon body for far too long.”
“You-! There’s no need to go after my lineage if all you wanted was to force this one back!”
“Shoving the emperor back is a serious offence!”
“You-you-you-what kind of response is that!?” the emperor screamed.
“Since you know that forcing the emperor back is a serious offence, why did you even attack me in the first place!?”
“Because His Imperial Majesty threatened to consign my daughter to a living hell!”
“It’s an imperial cefei, what about it is a living hell?” the emperor grumbled. Before Wei Xuan could reply, he raised a hand to prevent the minister from speaking any further.
“Even if there are some detriments from being Huan’er’s cefei, that still doesn’t excuse that knee attack.”
“There are not some detriments, there are a lot!” the minister bowed.
“The knee attack, this subject meant no offense. It was simply to have Your Imperial Majesty move back of his own volition.”
The officials began to chuckle, before hastily shutting themselves up after noticing the scarlet light flickering around the emperor’s body in an unstable manner.
“…this emperor still needs to work hard and rely on his lineage.”
“This minister knows! His Imperial Majesty indeed toils on his lineage with great effort each day. However, the last time an imperial seed has been germinated successfully has already been eighteen years ago.”
Faced with Wei Xuan’s cheeky reply, the emperor couldn’t help but stare at the smiling minister, his jaw threatening to drop onto the floor. Only after three-tenths of a joss stick’s of time had passed did his recover, and the scarlet light emanating from the emperor’s body thickened.
Without saying a single word, the emperor strode forth, his right am trailing behind.
As his fingers performed a grasping motion, a longsword of dull scarlet manifested into his grip. The sword dug into the floor of the Imperial Court, leaving deep grooves onto the mahogany floor.
Wei Xuan raised in eyebrow in appreciation, and he stepped back with his left foot, his right hand extended before him, level with his shoulder. With a similar motion of plucking a pen out of thin air, a thin silver pole manifested.
Both weapons were plain and ordinary in appearance, lacking any sort of fancy decorum on the blade or surface of the pole.
However, the emperor’s gaze thickened when he saw the thin stick grasped in Wei Xuan’s right hand.
“Minister Wei, are mocking this emperor?” the emperor spoke with a gloomy expression.
“Using a pole to spar with this emperor, are you not holding Us in your eyes at all?”
“Responding to Your Imperial Majesty,” the minister lowered his head.
“Great Yong’s regulations forbid the use of sharpened weapons against the imperial family unless in a life-or-death conflict. As this is merely a spar, this minister deemed it not appropriate to utilize a sword.”
“Hmph! This one shall make you regret!”
The arm grasping the scarlet longsword outstretched in the motion of an overhead swing, the emperor roared as the scarlet glow encasing his body expanded to create a massive projection of a phoenix behind him. Its wingspan surpassing eighteen meters in length and its height of ten, the phoenix towered over the ministers of the Imperial Court.
With a piercing, mournful screech, a dull flame sparked and covered the blade of the longsword, a terrifying heat emanating from the surface. With such a spectacle before their eyes, the observing ministers couldn’t help but squint their eyes to ward off the haze generated by the tremendous heat.
The fluctuations of spiritual essence grew incredibly denser with the flame’s presence, making the air seem sluggish and the lungs difficult to breathe in or expel it.
With a muffled grunt, Wei Xuan stepped backwards with his right foot, holding the pole before him at a diagonal angle. With a simple step forward, the minister raised the pole above his head, completing three revolutions before slamming it down towards the standing emperor, both hands gripping one end of the pole to extend its range.
Facing the stick of silver traveling at a slow yet unstoppable speed, the emperor narrowed his eyes before allowing his right arm to fall.
No sooner had the sword dropped to be level with his chest, the emperor pronated his wrist to the left before completing a full pivot to the right, the scarlet longsword bequeathed with flames soaring at an upwards, diagonal angle to forcefully meet with the descending pole.
However, before the silver pole and scarlet longsword could collide, a scarlet beam rushed out from left entrance in the rear of the Imperial Court, knocking both weapons astray.
Forcefully dissipating the tumultuous pulsing of the spiritual essence idling in the atmosphere, the beam continued to travel alongside its path to bury itself into the wall.
When the scarlet glow had faded, the occupants of the Imperial Court discovered the source to be a spear with a phoenix’ plume inscription on the spearhead.
Turning towards the direction in which the spear had been thrown, both the minister and emperor tilted their heads in confusion, for both the person responsible for the stern voice and spear was a beautiful, young woman dressed in a purple robe.
Her hair danced freely with only a single hairpin bundling a small bun on her head, the woman had a disappointed gaze on her on her gaze as she glared at the three hundred ministers and one emperor fooling around in the Imperial Court of Great Yong.
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