Chapter 30.1: A Skillful Fight against a Magister
At the Grand Pavilion, Jin Hao’s facial expression was grave as he sat down on a wooden chair decorated with flowery carvings. The Eldest Manager, Second Manager, as well as Liao Feng were standing in front of him.
Jin Hao slapped the table fiercely as he shouted angrily, “What do you have to say for yourselves! Why have each of you turned into a mute?”
The Eldest Manager, short and fat in stature, spoke with a face full of suffering, “Owner, what could we have done? You saw it too; that young’un called Nian Bing has almost godlike culinary skills. If we want to crush the Pure Wind House in this respect, I’m afraid it will be difficult.”
Jin Hao snorted coldly. “Don’t tell me you want to leave me helpless and waiting for death? Today’s competition was made known to the entire city; even the whole street was blocked off. If there is no way to deal with the outcome, our Grand Pavilion’s livelihood will drop by a thousand zhang in one moment1 Could it be that you want me to admit defeat to that old fool Xue Ji? Just thinking of him being pleased with himself makes me want to kill him.”
Second manager suddenly grinned darkly. He stepped forward once and said, “Owner, there is a way to resolve this issue.”
Jin Hao’s eyes glimmered as he said, “What is it? Quickly, speak.”
Second Manger rolled his eyes and said, “At the present, there are two different ways. When that young’un Nian Bing was making food, I was carefully observing him. His stature gave me a very familiar feeling. It was almost identical to that of the man who had killed third brother. Moreover, third brother was wounded with fire and ice magic at the same time. Today, Nian Bing displayed two kinds of magic. Although his level of magic was not on par with the Magic Reaper, if we take into consideration his magic control, it’s possible to say that he is at the level of the Magic Reaper.”
Jin Hao said, “You suspect that he is that Magic Reaper? Are you certain?”
Second Manager shook his head and said, “To be honest, your subordinate is not certain at all. When I was exchanging blows with that Magic Reaper, the main element he used was fire. But today, when Nian Bing was making his food, the principle element he used was ice. Since he only used scrolls to cast his fire magic, I can’t be certain that he’s the Magic Reaper from before. Still, we can start up an investigation. If he really is the Magic Reaper, then he is most likely the person that the Ice and Snow Goddess’ Worshiper Elder is looking for. Then, we need only secretly report it to the Goddess’ Worshipper Elder. Not only would Nian Bing be out of luck, but the Pure Wind House would also be implicated. Even Xue Ji would not escape. Even if the Devourer of Blood and Exterminator of Soul, Xue Po, was to act, he wouldn’t dare contend with the Goddess’ Worshipper Elder. Of course, there is a risk to doing things this way. First, we are not certain to find any evidence despite investigating. Even if Nian Bing is the Magic Reaper, if he is not the person that the Goddess’ Worshipper Elder is looking for, the Elder might take her anger out on us.”
Jin Hao nodded his head and asked, “What’s the other option?”
Second Manager huffed a laugh. He said, “The other way is much more certain to be fruitful. Owner, since you and the imperial family have a close relationship, you only need to write a letter to His Majesty the king telling of Nian Bing’s culinary arts. How could His Majesty not summon him into the palace? Without Nian Bing and with only Ming Yuan, how could the Pure Wind House be our Grand Pavilion’s opponent?”
Jin Hao’s eyes glinted. “Good. Old Second, you are no doubt the one with brains. We will carry out both plans at the same time, just as we have planned. Tomorrow I will write the letter to His Majesty. At the same time, you will dispatch people to closely observe Nian Bing. You must find strong evidence. Got it?”
Eldest manager and Second Manger bowed simultaneously and made noises of agreement. Next to them, Liao Feng’s eyes held a hint of disdain.
Xue Jing personally saw Nian Bing and the others out of the Pure Wind House. Nian Bing, Long Zhi, and Long Ling were silent as the carriage rolled along the road. Long Zhi’s eyes were closed the whole time, seemingly thinking over some things.
The carriage finally arrived at the Mage Association. Long Zhi descended the carriage and said to his daughter, “Ling’er, you go in and rest first. I have some things to say to Nian Bing.”
Long Ling nodded and gave Nian Bing a glance before leaving.
“Nian Bing, come with me.” Long Zhi’s face was expressionless as he spat out the sentence. He turned to the Mage Association entrance. The two elementary mages responsible for guarding the entrance immediately bowed respectfully in greeting when they saw him going in.
Nian Bing followed Long Zhi as they headed straight for the large building with a pointed roof where Li De had conducted Nian Bing’s magic test.
Long Zhi walked straight to the center of the large hall before halting his footsteps. With his back facing to Nian Bing, he said flatly, “I really did not think that the legendary Ice and Fire Magic Source would truly exist. Maybe you managed to fool the others, but you cannot fool a magister. While it’s true that the Exploding Flame was made using a magic scroll, the flame spell was your own ability. I could clearly sense the fire element come from your body at that time. Right now, I want to speak with you over these things. Great Mage Nian Bing.”
Nian Bing seemed to have already anticipated Long Zhi’s interrogating questions. With a small smile, he said, “Since I made the Ice and Fire Nine Heavens Series, I did not plan on hiding anything. President, I thank you for holding your questioning until now. It looks like I have not made the wrong gamble.”
Long Zhi turned around, his facial expression grave as he looked at Nian Bing. “Gamble? What were you gambling on?”
Nian Bing smiled slightly and said, “I was gambling on the relationship between you and the Ice Goddess’ Pagoda. Due to the oppression by the Ice Goddess’ Pagoda, the Association has never had a day where it could raise it’s head high. As a magister, it’s impossible for you to be content with not having the proper position within the Ice and Moon Empire. Actually, I knew that you had the ability to guess about my ability, but not be totally certain about my status as a dual element mage. However, I can tell you that I simultaneously possess the abilities to use fire and ice magic. I can also tell you that I am the person that the Ice and Snow Goddess’ Worshipper is looking for. Her objective in finding me is simple – they want to get back the Ice and Snow Goddess’ Stone.”
Long Zhi’s frame shook. He involuntarily cried out before asking, “You really are the one she’s looking for?”
Nian Bing pulled out a bundle of cloth from his chest and unwrapped it layer by layer until a shiny black scabbard could be seen. He tightly gripped second layer of cloth that was wrapped around the handle. On top of that layer of cloth was a magic array symbol. “The Ice and Snow Goddess’ stone is a top-level ice attribute magic stone. It is inlayed in the handle of this knife. The knife is called Morning Dew. It is not of lesser quality than Proud Sky. I cannot show you the Ice and Snow Goddess’ stone because the Ice God’s Pagoda is not that far away. I’m scared that the Ice and Snow Goddess’ Worshiper would be able to feel its aura. We must open the windows to heaven and speak clearly. I followed my master for eight years to learn cooking. But eight years ago, I was originally came from a happy family. Because of certain reasons, my family was torn asunder by the Ice and Snow Goddess’ Worshipper. She is my life-long enemy. The only reason why I toil to cultivate magic is because I hope that there is a day where I could exterminate the Ice Goddess’ Pagoda. Since we both wish for the disappearance of the Ice and Snow Goddess from this continent, it is best for us to remain allies. If you permit it, I will always remain with the Association. In case my magic strength grows to the point where I can contend against the Ice and Snow Goddess’ Pagoda, I will not hesitate in the slightest. I cannot tell you my true family background, but you might find out in the future. Right now, I only want you to understand that the Ice and Snow Goddess Worshiper and the Ice God’s Pagoda are our mutual enemies.”
“Nonsense.” Long Zhi breathed in sharply. “The Ice and Moon Empire Mage Association and the Ice God’s Pagoda are two branches that both are loyal to the Ice and Moon Empire Royal Family. Actually daring to say such disgraceful words, I will deliver you to the Ice God’s Pagoda right now.” Green light came sweeping out. The surging wind element magic flew to condense around Long Zhi. A great oppressive force slammed into Nian Bing’s body, making him unwillingly take a few steps back.
Nian Bing did not say anything. The box containing the Proud Sky Knife was set on the ground before light flashed in his hands. In one hand was the Morning Dew knife; in the other was the Flame God’s Stone. “Mighty Fire God! Please allow me to make use of your left hand and let the flame descend to earth to eradicate the wicked power. Let the blaze illuminate the whole earth and destroy all the barriers obstructing me. — The Fire God’s Left Hand.” A huge fiery hand suddenly appeared in front of Nian Bing at the end of the chant. Under Nian Bing’s control, it rushed towards Long Zhi. Under the amplification of the Flame God’s stone, the Fire God’s left hand exhibited its maximum strength as the temperature in the hall became sweltering.
Long Zhi coldly snorted. “Like a grain of rice with a bit of light. Allow me to show you the might of a magister.” A long green staff measuring almost 2 meters magically appeared in his hand. It bore a mysterious lined pattern on its surface and emitted a faint green light. At the very tip, there were nine green gems which were lined up in a row. Long Zhi pointed the magic staff and called out loudly, “Break.”
A huge blade of wind appeared. This blade, which reached almost three meters in length, directly sliced into Nian Bing’s Fire God’s Hand. With a extremely loud rumble, the Fire God’s Left hand actually dissolved into sparks, with the wind blade also shattered to pieces.
As the energy from the spell dispersed, Nian Bing’s went pale. He was forced back; inside him, the Ice and Fire Magic Source was fiercely thrashing. Because he had read through almost all of the magic books in the past few days, Nian Bing immediately recognized the magic Long Zhi had used. Dumbstruck, he said, “This is the rank six magic, Wind God’s Slash? How could you have instantly casted this magic.”
Long Zhi was equally surprised. He had thought that his magic would’ve been a lot stronger than Nian Bing’s. When a rank 6 spell clashed against a rank 5 spell, the former should have utterly destroyed the latter and still be able to attack. Nian Bing, however, had only been sent back several steps.
“As a magister, instantly casting low rank magic spells is nothing. Of course, I had to rely on the sub-god grade magic staff, Green Underworld, to instantly cast a rank 6 spell. It’s such a shame that that the Wind God’s Slash already reaches its limits. To be able to instantly cast it, magic power is condensed using these nine Green Underworld stones. Moreover, it can only be used to instantly cast a magic once a day. The Green Underworld stones need more time to condense the wind element. With my ability, instantly casting rank 4 magic is even easier. Now, cease fighting and allow yourself to be seized.”
Nian Bing smiled indifferently. He said, “Do you think that I am the kind of person who won’t struggle at all and just admit defeat? To be able to exchange blows with a magister is my honor.” While speaking, he returned the Morning Dew Knife to his chest. When his right hand appeared again, four magic scrolls were gripped between his fingertips.
Long Zhi laughed coldly, saying, “Do you think relying on those low-ranked magic scrolls will allow you to match me?
Nian Bing smiled indifferently and said, “I will admit, in the domain of magic, I am far below you. But, just like a trapped beast will continue to fight, how will I know there’s no way for me if I don’t try? Don’t forget, magic scrolls can be instantly casted.” Having said this, two out of the four scrolls had already been flung out.
Long Zhi’s expression deepened. His eyes shone as he pointed the Green Underworld Staff in his hand, a ball of dazzling green light suddenly appeared. This was also instantly casted magic, however, it was obviously a lot smaller than last time. The spell was the rank 4 Wind Wall Spell. However, he didn’t believe that this fourth rank magic could block Nian Bing’s attack. He continuously created an additional eight wind walls overlapping with each other, completely obstructing the space in front of him and demonstrating the prowess of a magister. A wild wind blew threw the halls in a moment, and Long Zhi’s figure was completely hidden from view.
Something strange happened. Nian Bing had tossed the two magic scrolls, but they were simply carried away by the wind without releasing any magic. Nian Bing smiled strangely. “Ah! Sorry, I just threw out plain scrolls. Hehe.”
Hearing Nian Bing’s voice, Long Zhi almost spit out blood. The nine Wind Wall Spells were pointless. Not only that, it also prevented him from attacking in return. Snorting coldly, Long Zhi began to speak rhythmically, beginning his magic chant. Although the nine wind walls prevented him from attacking Nian Bing at the moment, it also gave him time to chant. The higher the rank of the magic, the longer it would take to chant the spell. In the midst of the shrieking of the gale, Nian Bing could not hear what magic Long Zhi was chanting at all.
Nian Bing’s face became serious. He stuffed the magic scrolls back into his chest while simultaneously drawing the delicate Icicle Wand. His left arm raised the Flame God’s Stone, and he speedily chanted the spell he was best at.
“Mighty Fire God! Please allow me to make use of your left hand and let the flame descend to earth to eradicate the wicked power. Let the blaze illuminate the whole earth and destroy all the barriers obstructing before me. ——The Fire God’s Left Hand.” The light of the fire exploded out as a huge, fiery hand appeared on Nian Bing’s left. The hall, which had been awash with green light from the wind wall spells, was covered in a red glow.
“Powerful ice element! Condense and turn into the ice from the ancient Cold River, turn into ice from the splendid moon. Ice and ice combine and become two ice balls.” The icicle wand tilted and blue light began to continually condense before it, filling the air with a biting cold. Balls of ice, half light blue and half dark blue, appeared. This was the highest rank magic that Nian Bing could produce currently, the rank 6 magic, Twin Balls of Ice.
The Flame God’s stone and the icicle wand were raised high up in the air. Nian Bing’s full head of golden hair seemed to be ruffled by a nonexistent wind under the stimulation from the Ice and Fire Magic Source. His skin glowed both red and blue, alternately flashing. The whirlpool of magic inside his body spun to its limits.
- This means that it suffered a devastating blow very quickly. ↩