It was no secret that Cao Guoyao was adept at insect mastery. Someone once said that outside of those at the Insect Swarm Valley, no one in this world was more skilled in insect mastery than him.
“Competing in a non-familiar field instead of one’s specialty is unwise.” An older alchemist couldn’t help but murmur after hearing Cao Guoyao’s challenge.
The power of Li Qiye’s wood mastery was as clear as day. It was extremely powerful! Anyone would be lost in awe, and Cao Guoyao had no way of comparing with him.
But now, if Li Qiye wanted to forego his advantage in wood mastery and compete with insect mastery instead, he would be put at a great disadvantage!
Li Qiye seemed to be enjoying things as he said: “It seems that you are very confident in your insect mastery. Since it is so, what will you bet to challenge me?”
“My life!” Cao Guoyao stood above his pavilion and laughed proudly to say: “My life is more precious than any treasure in this world! My… life can handle any bet!”
These words were spoken with complete confidence and pride. It was not strange for him to have such an attitude. As one of the four prodigies and the one most well-versed in pill refinement, his life was indeed valuable, a unique treasure in the eyes of many.
Quite a lot of spectators were aghast at such a huge gamble; he was putting his life on the line! It was just as he said, his life was more valuable than anything else! This was no longer a simple bet.
“Betting your life for mine?” Li Qiye smiled and glanced at Cao Guoyao to lazily say: “I am not looking down on you, but my life is more precious than yours!”
Cao Guoyao snorted as a response, but he did not become angry. He coldly said: “I am a merciful person and do not wish to take your life. My demand is very simple. Should you lose, just hand over the secret manual of your dao of alchemy!”
His words were even more pleasant than a melody. From the beginning, he came for Li Qiye’s alchemy manual. Of course, if there was a chance to kill Li Qiye, he wouldn’t let it go for anything! To him, Li Qiye was his strongest opponent on the dao of alchemy; Li Qiye was no weaker than the white hair alchemist!
Many big shots that were watching from afar felt their hearts beating faster. They had heard of rumors regarding Li Qiye’s dao of alchemy before, but the majority of them hadn’t seen it with their own eyes.
But it was different now. Right after seeing Li Qiye’s wood mastery, it would be a lie to say if these big shots were not tempted by his dao. Any lineage that could obtain his dao of alchemy would perhaps be able to train some more disciples just like the four prodigies.
They also recognized that since the very beginning, Cao Guoyao came for Li Qiye’s dao of alchemy. It was no wonder why he started with an ambush from the Dark Serpent. This was because he didn’t want to kill Li Qiye outright, he wanted to capture him instead.
“Okay, it doesn’t matter if you are here for my life or for my alchemy manual.” Li Qiye smiled and said while rubbing his palms together: “I have not played this game in a very long time, so I’ll entertain you. You can start first so that when you die, you can’t blame me for not giving you a chance.”
“Good, since you are so kind, I will kindly oblige.” Cao Guoyao let out a carefree laugh, but he was sneering in his mind.
He excelled at Insect and poison mastery. Moreover, he had cultivated for a very long time in these aspects and groomed many insects. He came prepared! Even if Li Qiye’s dao of alchemy was peerless, how could Li Qiye compete with him without sufficient preparations?
Cao Guoyao took out an old urn. The moment it was opened, a very large spider came out from inside and squatted on the ground like a mound.
It was covered in green, steel hair. Its eyes emitted an awe-inspiring glow, and its terrorizing pair of fangs seemed to be able to bite through anything and erode everything.
“Moonplucking Arach!” A few powerful cultivators quivered after seeing this huge spider. A knowledgeable alchemist from the previous generation was aghast and called out its origin.
A Moonplucking Arach was not as frightening as what it appeared to be. In fact, it was not poisonous. However, its silk was extremely strong. Don’t dream about escaping once trapped in its web.
Thus, many powerful heavenly beasts and longevity spirits were doomed once they were trapped. No matter how much they struggled, they could only become its meal.
Its name meant that if even the moon in the sky were to be caught by its silk, the spider would bring it down. This meant that not only was the silk tough and flexible, it also spoke of its mighty power.
“Go, catch him!” Cao Guoyao issued his first command after releasing the spider. He had trained it for a very long time so it obeyed his commands without delay!
“Shhhhshh…” In an instant, the spider immediately jumped outside and spewed out a great amount of silk that instantly covered the sky. This web was formed with an astonishing speed.
To everyone’s surprise, the spider didn’t attack Li Qiye right away, it only continued spewing out more silk to form a large web. In a short period of time, its web sealed the entire area as well as the four directions. Countless strands of silk intertwined as if this was its nest.
Anyone would feel creeped out by this scene. The mountain where Li Qiye stood and the surrounding one hundred miles was on locked down by the webs! This land now seemed like the lair of the creature, causing all the spectators to feel a chill running down their backs.
“Pluffff—!” After sealing the area with its webs, it spewed out even more to form a net that flew towards Li Qiye.
The spider was swift, but Li Qiye was even faster. In the blink of an eye, Li Qiye evaded the incoming net with his great agility.
“Plufff!” As the spider’s nets kept on raining down, Li Qiye continued to shift his position at an incredible speed, causing the spider to fail time after time.
However, as he continued to dodge, more nets came down and his area to maneuver became limited. The spider was not just blindly spewing out its webs. Its ability to strategize was amazing. Each of its moves aimed to eventually seal Li Qiye’s retreat so that he would have nowhere left to run. At that point, he would become a prey trapped in its net.
In addition to the huge webs that locked down the area, the spider continuously forced Li Qiye to retreat so that he would run out of room. It seemed that his escape was an impossibility.
“If your insect mastery is lacking, then it is not too late to surrender.” Cao Guoyao was ecstatic to watch Li Qiye dodging the webs; however, his external expression was one of righteousness. He smiled and said: “I will be very sad if the Moonplucking Arach were to hurt Brother Li. The dao of alchemy would lose a supreme genius, and I would lose a worthy opponent.”
In accordance with his plan, he acted generously and called Li Qiye a brother. In his eyes, Li Qiye had become trapped in his net, so how could he not put on this act?
Others were also anxious to see Li Qiye’s continual evasion. No matter how hard he tried, he wasn’t able to escape from the spider. Moreover, Li Qiye had yet to counter attack, so many thought that he wasn’t adept at insect mastery!
“Is that so? I’m just playing with you. Do you really think that this little art can actually trap me?” Li Qiye smiled and stared at the Moonplucking Arach before issuing a sharp cry.
“Plufff—” The spider grabbed onto this rare opportunity and spewed out a huge web towards Li Qiye.
This particular web was extremely fast and flew towards Li Qiye. However, Li Qiye didn’t try to dodge. Very shortly, he would be covered by this web.
Madam Zi Yan’s heart was hanging by a thread as she watched this scene. She fearfully exclaimed: “Watch out!”
“Xshhh…” However, the spider net that aimed for him was cut in half in the blink of an eye.
People finally saw a scorpion that crawled out of nowhere. It came from Li Qiye’s courtyard. This scorpion was even faster than the Moonplucking Arach! Right when it came out, its claw instantly cut the approaching net to save Li Qiye.
The scorpion could only be called tiny compared to the huge spider. It was only the size of a desk while its outward appearance was completely red with a hint of gold. More importantly, Its claws were extremely sharp.
“Divine Scorpion King.” Even Cao Guoyao was shocked after seeing this creature.
An alchemist who studied poisonous creatures startlingly stated: “The bane of the Moonplucking Arach, the Divine Scorpion King! Its poison is unbelievable, and it also has a pair of extremely sharp claws that specialize in cutting spider webs.”