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But despite their strength, they were still unable to send a signal for help before they were taken away. Unless it was him with the Pavilion Master Seal activated or an Ancient Sage personally making a move, he could not think of anyone who could pull this off.
Eye of Insight!
Zhang Xuan swiftly scanned the surroundings.
A moment later, a frown appeared on his forehead as his face turned livid.
There isn't any trace of at all?
The Eye of Insight had never failed him before, but at that very moment, it was not working!
In the past, as long as he observed close enough, he would be able to find something amiss. However, no matter how he squinted, he could not find any traces of the a.s.sailant or the trail of his students. It was almost as if they had evaporated on the spot!
"Those two students of yours are considerably powerful. For the a.s.sailant to be able to kidnap them without leaving any trace behind, it must be a formidable foe!" Sword Saint Meng remarked grimly.
"Could it be the doing of the Otherworldly Demonic Tribe?" Zhang Xuan asked.
"The killing intent that Otherworldly Demons emanate is too powerful for it to be concealed entirely. Since there isn't any trace of their killing intent here, it stands to reason that it shouldn't be their doing… However, if the culprit is an Ancient Sage Otherworldly Demon, that might not hold anymore," Sword Saint Meng replied.
"Ancient Sage…" Zhang Xuan's complexion turned terribly awful.
While he did have some conflict with the Master Teacher Pavilion, they had already been resolved. It was unlikely that the master teachers would do something as ign.o.ble as getting back at him through his students afterward.
As for the other powers, the only way that they could nab his students was to mobilize their Ancient Sages.
However, the human Ancient Sages did not have much time left, so to awaken them just to capture his students… the notion did not seem too probable.
Thus, that made the Otherworldly Demonic Emperor the most likely culprit.
Noticing her son's agitation, Sword Saint Meng quickly stepped forward and took charge of the situation. "Calm down, let's check the area once more. We might be able to find something. The most important thing that we have to do right now is confirm whom the culprit is and whether your students are in any danger!"
Zhang Xuan nodded in response.
It was hard to remain rational when it came to something that affected one. Instead of panicking, the most important thing at hand was indeed to confirm if the two of them were safe.
So, they went through every single detail that could be found in the vicinity, checking every nook and cranny carefully.
"Did you manage to find anything?" Sword Saint Meng asked.
Zhang Xuan shook his head. "The culprit is either very skilled in concealing their tracks or they really vanished into thin air, leaving nothing behind at all! What about you?"
The person who had nabbed Zhao Ya and Wei Ruyan had utilized some kind of unfathomable means that rendered even the Eye of Insight useless in identifying and tracking them down.
"I managed to figure out a few things!" Sword Saint Meng replied. "Firstly, based on the battle marks, the culprit used a total of two moves in order to subdue Zhao Ya and Wei Ruyan, rendering the both of them completely helpless."
"Two moves?" Zhang Xuan narrowed his eyes.
"That's right. While there are many smaller holes on the ground, which makes it seem as if there was an intense battle, there are only two larger pits. The first pit is cloaked with a layer of frost, so I deduce that it should be the area where Zhao Ya faced off with the culprit!"
Tracing Sword Saint Meng's finger, Zhang Xuan saw a slightly deeper pit with chilling frost lingering around it.
"It's likely that Zhao Ya was intending to launch an attack, but it was deflected by the culprit. The deflected energy ended up scattering around the area, resulting in the many smaller holes. From that, it could be seen that even when Zhao Ya was utilizing the limits of her strength, she was still no match for the culprit at all," Sword Saint Meng a.n.a.lyzed.
Zhang Xuan examined the surroundings once more and realized that the smaller holes seemed to congregate around the larger pit, which lent credibility to Sword Saint Meng's a.n.a.lysis. Furthermore, there were no notable marks of battle aside from that, so it was safe to a.s.sume that the battle had ended with that single collision.
"The same applies to Wei Ruyan through the other pit. Furthermore, from the proximity of the two larger pits, my guess is that the both of them made a move simultaneously, but the culprit still managed to subdue them with ease!" Sword Saint Meng said with a grim look on her face.
To be honest, she was a little astounded by her own discovery. For an individual to be able to subdue two top-notch experts in a single move… just who in the world could the culprit be? And what was their motive for doing this?
Did the culprit not know that their actions would turn the Glacier Plain Court, Poison Hall, Sanctum of Sages, and even the Zhang Clan against him?
Each of those powers had extraordinary trump cards in their grasp that they would never use unless in desperate situations. Otherwise, they would not have been able to remain standing on the Master Teacher Continent for so many years.
While the two of them were still trying to make sense out of the situation, an elder of the Zhang Clan suddenly flew over and called out.
He was the Eighth Elder, the person who had delivered the message to Zhang Xuan earlier.
Zhang Xuan turned his head over questioningly.
The Eighth Elder clasped his fist and reported anxiously, "Reporting to the clan head, the Yuan Clan has just sent a request for help. Their young master has been kidnapped by someone as well!"
"Yuan Tao has been kidnapped, too?" Zhang Xuan nearly exploded on the spot.
"This is the message that an elder of the Yuan Clan just sent over…" The Eighth Elder pa.s.sed a jade token over.
Zhang Xuan lowered his head and browsed through it gravely.
Unlike the case with Zhao Ya and Wei Ruyan, the culprit had stomped right into the Yuan Clan, breaching all of its defenses in an instant. Not even the full might of the Yuan Clan was enough to stop them. Before they could even clearly see whom the culprit was, the culprit had already fled with Yuan Tao in their grasp.
"Where's the Yuan Clan?" Zhang Xuan asked the Eighth Elder anxiously.
"The Yuan Clan is located here!" Sword Saint Meng said as she quickly sent the coordinates over.
"Let's head over right now!"
After confirming the location, Zhang Xuan took out another bunch of grade-9 formation flags and constructed a Teleportation Formation.
The duo disappeared from the spot.
The next instant, they were already in the vicinity of the Yuan Clan.
"Clan Head Zhang, Sword Saint Meng…"
Very soon, the deputy clan head of the Yuan Clan led the two of them to the main hall.
"We didn't manage to catch the appearance of the culprit clearly, but he was wearing a long robe when he entered the Yuan Clan. Our first thought was that he was a master teacher, but there were some discrepancies in his attire. As soon as he arrived, he immediately captured Yuan Tao. We tried to stop him, but he simply blasted through out Guardian Formation with a single palm strike," the deputy clan head said as he pointed at the formation above.
Zhang Xuan and Sword Saint Meng turned their gazes upward and saw a palm print on the roof and even the formations above them.
A formation should not have any tangible form other than its formation flags, thus making it highly difficult to deal with. Yet, to be able to tear a hole right through multiple formations and even prevent the formations from converging back in to repair the hole… the culprit would truly be a troublesome person to deal with.
As one of the top Sage Clans on the continent, the Guardian Formation of the Yuan Clan was the crystallization of the wisdom of many generations of experts. Even among grade-9 formations, it was ranked at the very top.
It would be no exaggeration to say that even those who had reached the pinnacle of Great Sage would be unable to do so, yet the culprit was able to do it with a single palm strike. It was no wonder he could capture Yuan Tao, who had already awakened his Emperor's Bloodline, so easily…
It seemed like the culprit had already achieved an inconceivable level of strength.
"Even Yang s.h.i.+ would not necessarily be able to pull this off…" Sword Saint Meng's lips twitched at the sight as well.
She had sparred with Yang s.h.i.+ before, so she had a rough idea of just how powerful the latter was. Since she had said such words, it was likely the case.
With a concerned frown, Zhang Xuan could not help but ask, "Is the culprit… an Ancient Sage?"
Having reached the pinnacle of Great Sage, Yang s.h.i.+ was indubitably one of the strongest experts on the Master Teacher Continent, matched by very few in the newer generation. The only ones who could really outdo him would be the Ancient Sages.
And the only one whom Zhang Xuan knew had the ability to do so was the Otherworldly Demonic Emperor.
"No, the culprit isn't an Ancient Sage." The deputy clan head shook his head. "I still can recognize the aura of Ancient Sages, and I'm certain that the other party hasn't reached such a level yet!"
"The culprit is so powerful despite having yet to reach Ancient Sage?" Zhang Xuan's heart jolted in astonishment.
"Does the culprit possess some means reminiscent to the Pavilion Master Seal, granting him strength invincible among those beneath Ancient Sage?"