Seeing Hua Fei at his residence was rather surprising since he hadn't told anybody where exactly in the Academy he lived. He had no idea how she had managed to find the location but she had. She opened her mouth to speak when she noticed Shang Yang behind Ye Xiu and closed her mouth once again. Shang Yang raised her eyebrow when she noticed who had come to their residence. "How'd you find out where we live?" The question was asked in an accusing tone because she liked her privacy.
Hua Fei shrank back from her confident stance slightly before regaining it when she heard the tone that Shang Yang was speaking in. "I don't like the tone you're talking to me with, and if you have to know, I got the information from a teacher that kindly told me where you are living." Shang Yang's eyebrows rose even higher when Hua Fei bit back with snark.
"I sincerely doubt that teachers would randomly give away information on other students that easily and not many teachers even know where we're living." She knew this very well since San Guo liked to keep information of the students that he was training private simply because he didn't like people badgering them or him especially when they were supposed to be training. "Just tell us why you're here." She sighed when she knew that Hua Fei was probably not going to leave until her business was done.
"I'm here to apologise to Ye Xiu, not you, so move out of the way." Shang Yang was taken aback by the attitude that she was displaying but didn't display her emotions outwardly as she left the entrance of the doorway to get back to where Xiao Tu and Shi Die were sparring. "Now that she's gone, I'd like to say sorry about what happened earlier."
Ye Xiu narrowed his eyes. "I accept your apology but I don't see why you would suddenly touch me in such a manner when we've only seen each other for a total of three times, well four now. We haven't exactly developed a relationship, we're just acquaintances right now. Please, give me a good reason to why you would touch me." Ye Xiu closed his eyes as he tried to calm himself down.
He waited for Hua Fei's answer but none came. "Well? Are you going to tell me or not?" He questioned her once again since he wanted to know the answer to his question. If it was merely a joke then he could accept it but if it was something more than that, he would have to think about it.
Hua Fei's prepared words for her apology stopped short of her throat when Ye Xiu asked her a question that she had not been expecting to hear from Ye Xiu, a person that she knew was a very inexperienced person when it came to romantic affairs. She decided to lie to him because she didn't want to lose the relationship that she felt that they had developed. "I just want to be friends with you. It's how I show friendly affection to others."
"Just don't touch me like that again, and we can see if we will be friends in the future." Ye Xiu accepted the answer as it was since he didn't have much experience with romance and was easily lied to since he couldn't tell whether she was lying or not. He wasn't able to read her body movement and the way her body had tensed when he had answered the question, or the way it had untensed when he had accepted her answer.
Ye Xiu closed the door on her, not bothered to say goodbye to since he wasn't bothered to be a gentleman to a person that had disrupted his entire day's schedule due to her actions. Hua Fei narrowed her eyes at the door that had been closed on her, thoughts running wildly around her mind. 'I'll get you one day... just you wait. You'll be mine and nobody will be there to stop me.'
She turned her heel away from the residence and made her way back to her mentor's residence to talk about what had happened. Whilst she was walking back, Ye Xiu took his time to get back to the training grounds where he noticed that Shi Die had already started his second stage of transformation.
Shi Die's control in this stage of his transformation wasn't perfect but it was definitely enough for him to spar in a controlled environment. Xiao Tu was unable to keep up with Shi Die's speed and he could be seen being battered around the entire training ground as he had no chance to defend against Shi Die's claws.
The claws didn't hurt him much because of his strong body, but numerous injuries slowly added up and Shi Die was going for the victory through blood loss. Xiao Tu's body prevented him from losing much blood which definitely helped him stay in the fight much longer than he should've been able to.
Ye Xiu looked at Shang Yang and asked her how long this had been going on for. "How long has Shi Die been attacking Xiao Tu at such a relentless speed?"
"When I left you to talk to that rude girl, Hua Fei, I had come back to this scene and I think it probably had been going on since we left the training grounds to answer the front door."
Ye Xiu watched Xiao Tu trying his best to defend against the attacks and he could only block a few attacks. Shi Die's claws were definitely sharp but Xiao Tu's body held up against it and only the claw swipes that held most of Shi Die's strength in it had caused small cuts to appear. He knew that though Shi Die was extremely fast with his transformation, the transformation itself took a huge amount of energy to maintain so Shi Die should've ended the fight as quickly as possible.
Though against Xiao Tu, it proved to be hard to end it quickly since his defence was strong enough to withstand most of Shi Die's attacks unless he used more strength which would tire him out at an even faster pace.
Ye Xiu saw that Shi Die was starting to slow down and was reverting his transformation from the second stage to the first stage to conserve energy. Xiao Tu knew that he should start going on the offensive once Shi Die started to slow down because if he gave Shi Die time to recover then he would lose because of his injuries.
Xiao Tu used another fire technique that he had been practising as he transformed his weapon into its spear form, a mini-flame dragon was conjured around the engraving of the weapon. As Shi Die moved towards Xiao Tu for a final attack as he changed back into his second stage of transformation, Xiao Tu suddenly disappeared from his spot and arrived directly in front of Shi Die with his spear being thrust forward towards Shi Die's chest before it stopped, barely a centimetre away from hitting him.
Shi Die sighed as he reverted back to his normal appearance as he knew that had lost the fight because that attack would've killed him if Xiao Tu hadn't stopped himself. "Good fight. You've definitely improved once you obtained your new weapon. You used attacks that you never used before in that fight that caught me off-guard. I definitely have to improve in the efficiency of my Qi combination because it takes too much out of me to use it repetitively."
Xiao Tu put his weapon back into his soul space before grinning. "That was an amazing fight." He hugged Shi Die even with blood running down his body.
"Ahhh! Don't hug me, you're dirty right now!" Shi Die started to whine as Xiao Tu squeezed even harder, with little intention of releasing him from his hold. When Xiao Tu let go of Shi Die, he spluttered in incoherence as he tried to wipe off all the dirt and blood that had stuck to him from Xiao Tu's hug. He clicked his tongue in annoyance before walking into the residence to clean himself up.
Xiao Tu put on a thoughtful face after Shi Die left and started to analyse his improvement in the fight that had just finished with Ye Xiu. "The weapon enhanced the strength of my fire attacks, I'm not quite sure if it'll help me with my metal Qi attacks but I have a sneaking suspicion that it should enhance it as well. I need to get faster so that I can react and fight against those who move at the same speed as Shi Die, but it'll take a while for me to develop that speed."
Ye Xiu flicked Xiao Tu on the forehead as he noticed him trying to hug him from behind. "Nice try. Anyway, with Long Hua, you should be able to keep up with all of us in the fights now. I bet that if you fought against Shang Yang, she'd definitely have no chance against your flames." He stopped himself there. "Nevermind, she can probably defend against your flames with her own flames. At least you can fight her if your metal Qi attacks are enhanced by your weapon!"
They walked inside of the house when a letter was shoved underneath their door. Knowing the only person who would shove letters or notes underneath the door, he quickly opened it and called out to his other friends. He waited for Shi Die to finish his shower before reading the letter because he didn't know if it was important or not so it was best for them to wait for everyone to be present before reading the letter.
Shang Yang and Xiao Tu were watching Ye Xiu make some sandwiches for them as Shi Die came down. "What'd you call me down for?"He was drying his hair with a towel as he sat down on one of the chairs in the living room.
"Sir sent us a letter, you know I always wait for everyone to be here before we look at his letters." He read out what the letter contained. "Dear my favourite students, I would like to inform you that the tournament that is going to be hosted in the latter part of the academic year has fights that are participated individually, in a pair or in a team of five."
"I want for the four of you to participate in each category because it would give you plenty of experience. I would suggest you find a suitable candidate for your team of five that will participate with you and have him train with the four of you. I do not mind personally training the candidate you select when you choose to train as a team but make sure that he doesn't have any other commitments that require them to attend."
Ye Xiu finished reading out the letter and they sat on the chairs bewildered. Shang Yang was the first to break the silence that was present in the room. "So... he wants us to fight in every single category? I don't mind but who are we going to ask to be the fifth person on the team? We should also decide who is going to be with who in the paired fights."
Shi Die tilted his head. "I can go with Ye Xiu and the two of you can pair together. I don't fight with Ye Xiu together enough and the same can be said for the two of you as well. Sir did say that this was for experience so it should be better for the two of you to go together."
Xiao Tu pouted but nodded his head in acceptance. "Does anybody know anyone trustworthy and strong enough to be in our team?" Xiao Tu asked since that was their biggest concern currently.
"I know of a person that might be willing." Ye Xiu provided an answer. "You all know him, it's Yan Guo. I think that he'd be perfect for our group." Ye Xiu looked at his friends to see if they would accept his suggestion.
Shi Die bit his lip before nodding. "He's definitely strong, I'll give him that. Accept him on a trial basis and we'll see how well he works with the rest of us."
Ye Xiu grinned as he knew that his suggestion wasn't refused. "That's great. I'll talk to him tomorrow. Now we should just clean up and meditate."