Zhou Yuan stared at the second rune on the Heavenly Yuan Brush as he mumbled. Soon after, he laughed. “Truly formidable, as expected of the Heavenly Yuan Brush.”
It had been several months since the first rune of the Heavenly Yuan Brush had been awakened. Over this period of time, Zhou Yuan had not stopped feeding it Genesis Beast spirits. Even so, the second rune had only awakened on the fifth day after entering Blackwater.
The awakened rune was called Erode.
Qi Hao’s face was filled with terror as he howled in disbelief, “What have you done to me?!”
Zhou Yuan glanced at him as the Heavenly Yuan Brush in his hand suddenly vibrated. One could only watch as the brush tip made a beckoning motion and Qi Hao’s body began to shake violently. A miserable scream rang out from his mouth as snow-white hairs so thin that they were barely visible began to tunnel out from his pores.
The hairs sparkled as if they had absorbed a large amount of Genesis Qi. Like a flock of birds returning to the nest, the hairs flew towards the tip of the Heavenly Yuan Brush.
As the hairs returned, Zhou Yuan immediately felt the Genesis Qi in the Heavenly Yuan Brush begin to rise rapidly, while the flickering green light at its tip grew even sharper.
Zhou Yuan looked towards Qi Hao. The latter wore an expression of horror as the golden light on his body swiftly receded. Unbreakable Metal had been dispelled.
What terrified him the most however, was that the Genesis Qi in his body seemed to have been eroded and stolen away by something and was rapidly depleting.
Qi Hao regained control of his body, but the fear on his face remained.
Due to having his Genesis Qi depleted, a sour feeling of powerlessness began to spread within his body.
Zhou Yuan gave the Heavenly Yuan Brush a little shake as he smiled, “Every time my Heavenly Yuan Brush pierced your skin, a hair invisible to the naked eye would enter your body.”
“These hairs concealed themselves in your blood and flesh as they secretly eroded away your Genesis Qi, seizing it as their own. They will ultimately leave with the Genesis Qi and provide it to the Heavenly Yuan Brush.”
At this point, Zhou Yuan could not help but sigh. This ability was just too frightening. The slightest negligence would result in the hairs secretly entering one’s body without notice and erode away one’s Genesis Qi.
Most importantly, these hairs were even able to return to the Heavenly Yuan Brush and pass the stolen Genesis Qi to it, practically allowing the brush to maintain its power indefinitely.
In other words, the current Heavenly Yuan Brush would still be able to display its power without any consumption of Zhou Yuan’s Genesis Qi.
“It really lives up to having once been a Sacred Genesis Weapon.” Zhou Yuan exclaimed in his heart. Although the first awakened rune was pretty unique, Zhou Yuan had not felt that the brush was truly amazing.
However, now that the second rune had been awakened, the Heavenly Yuan Brush had finally began to slowly reveal how extraordinary it was.
“I wonder what kind of abilities the subsequent seven runes will possess.” Zhou Yuan’s eyes were filled with expectation. Given how out of this world the second rune was, it was difficult to imagine the power of the Heavenly Yuan Brush when it recovered all of its abilities.
“Do you understand now?” There was a faint grin on Zhou Yuan’s lips as he gazed at the terrified Qi Hao.
Qi Hao’s face was deathly pale. It was only at this point did he understand why Zhou Yuan had continued to exchange injuries with him even after he had brought out Unbreakable Metal. He had previously believed that Zhou Yuan was a fool, and it was only now that he realised that it had all been part of Zhou Yuan’s plan.
It had been for the sake of allowing the brush hairs to invade his body.
No matter how strong his defences were with Unbreakable Metal, it could not defend against attacks from the inside.
Zhou Yuan slowly lifted the Heavenly Yuan Brush, light pulsing at the brush tip as it pointed at Qi Hao.
Fear flooded Qi Hao’s face. How could he have imagined such a turn of events. He should have been able to stably maintain the upper hand, eventually crush Zhou Yuan under his heel and slowly torment the latter.
Due to fear, Qi Hao no longer cared about anything else and quickly turned around, the little Genesis Qi he had frantically circulating to help him escape.
However, he had only managed to take a few steps before a piercing sound rang out behind him. Qi Hao’s body suddenly became rigid as he slowly lowered his head, only to find a spear tip made of snow-white brush hairs protruding from his chest…
The fresh blood that flowed along the snow-white hairs quickly dripped off, allowing the hairs to maintain their pristine white appearance.
“In your next life, use your head a little when you fight with others. Being overjoyed because of a small advantage will only lead to one’s death.” A cold voice echoed from behind him. In the end, Qi Hao vomited a mouthful of fresh blood, the scene before his eyes gradually turning to darkness as his body crumpled to the ground.
Outside the valley, everyone fell silent at this moment. It was a long while later before a loud uproar erupted.
“Qi Hao has died?!”
“How is this possible?! The advantage had been his all along, how was he defeated all of a sudden?!”
Everyone was stupefied as if they had seen a ghost. A minute ago, they had been pitying Zhou Yuan because they felt he would die at Qi Hao’s hands, an outcome that was reversed a minute later.
“Something seemed to have come out from Qi Hao’s body earlier.” Some of the individuals with better eyesight had managed to catch sight of some clues.
“It was likely some trick of Zhou Yuan’s and Qi Hao unknowingly fell prey to it.”
These people looked to each other and ultimately gasped in surprise. No matter what trick Zhou Yuan had used, he was the ultimate victor.
“It’s really hard to believe that he killed the advance Qi Nourishing stage Qi Hao with his initial Qi Nourishing stage strength!”
“More importantly, he hasn’t even learnt a Qi cultivation method!”
“What a monster!”
“To think that the Great Zhou Empire would have such an abnormal prince… looks like we have to be more careful in future.”
Meanwhile, near the bottom of the valley, Wei Qingqing and Su Youwei had begun to dominate their fights and eventually ended them. The moment they were done, both girls simultaneously shot towards the bottom of the valley.
It was clear that they were both worried about Zhou Yuan.
However, when they reached the bottom of the valley, they were just in time to see Qi Hao’s figure slowly fall to the ground.
Behind Qi Hao was the slender figure of a handsome youth wielding the Heavenly Yuan Brush.
“Qi Hao… is dead?” Wei Qingqing’s mouth hung slightly open, disbelief all over her face as she stared at Zhou Yuan. She clearly understood just how powerful Qi Hao was, and even she herself only had a fifty percent chance of victory against him.
Yet, a foe that even she had difficulty facing had died at the hands of the initial Qi Nourishing stage Zhou Yuan?
“Your highness is truly too amazing.” Su Youwei was not surprised at all and openly exclaimed in praise. For her, it would always make sense no matter how unbelievable a feat Zhou Yuan had accomplished.
Wei Qingqing was speechless. How was this amazing, it was more apt to call it monstrous, right?
Just how exactly had Zhou Yuan killed Qi Hao?
While the two girls blankly stared at this scene, Zhou Yuan turned his head and grinned at them. Soon after, he involuntarily grimaced in pain due to the injuries on his body.
The Heavenly Yuan Brush in his hands rapidly shrunk before being stuffed back into Zhou Yuan’s waistband. He then lifted his head, looking towards the fire-like Fire Spirit Grain as he breathed a sigh of relief as if a heavy burden had been removed from his shoulders.
The Fire Spirit Grain had finally been obtained.