Chapter 24: Jiang Chen Shocks All Those Present
The heir of Tianshui dukedom, Shui Qingshu, demonstrated the Eastern King Point. Fluttering and ethereal, it was a bizarre flow. It appeared that he had actually trained it to a pretty good level.
Princess Gouyu inclined her head slightly upon seeing this, and rated it at “Peak Perfection”.
The heir of Black Tortoise, Yi Taichu, exhibited a flowery version of the Amethyst Cloud Palm. It was extremely elegant, like mercury spilt on the ground. This cooled the ardor of several youths who had been chomping at the bit to hop onto the stage and have a go.
They felt the distance yawning between them and Yi Taichu in comparison.
As for Princess Gouyu, she also looked on in admiration and gave a rating of “Initial Flawless”.
This was also the first heir of the day who had received a “Flawless” realm evaluation.
One had to know that it was incredibly uncommon to practice a martial dao method to even “Peak Perfection”.
Achieving the flawless realm basically meant that there were no vulnerabilities or flaws. The practitioner had reached a level in which not even a drop of water would find an opening.
The next level was the “Great Perfection” realm.
Only a true genius was able to train a martial dao method to the level of “Great Perfection”. This meant that, at least for this particular martial technique, this particular practitioner’s understanding and talent were at the apex.
Bai Zhanyun, the heir to White Tiger, became a bit fidgety when Yi Taichu received such a high commendation.
“I shall demonstrate a set of Eastern King Point.”
Bai Zhanyun was practically on the same level as Yan Yiming when it came to the Amethyst Cloud Palm. He was also at “Peak Perfection”, and had not yet reached the “Flawless” realm.
But he had steeped himself in the practice of Eastern King Point for many years, and had naturally formed his own interpretation.
Although Bai Zhanyun might be arrogant, there was a certain flow in the way he deployed the Eastern King Point. It was as if swallows hid amongst the clouds, or birds speeding towards the woods. An unexpected twist would always take place whenever it came to a bend in the road. It illustrated the saying of “Where hills bend, streams wind and the pathway seems to end, past dark willows and flowers in bloom lies another village.”.
Under Bai Zhanyun’s guidance, “unique” and “change” could be the additional adjectives used in describing his set of Eastern King Point. Although he had yet to reach the perfection realm, his innovation and expansion of the method was already worthy of a judgment of “Flawless Realm”.
Indeed, after Princess Gouyu’s contemplation, she gave a “Peak Flawless” commendation.
Bai Zhanyun was incredibly proud that he had received “Peak Flawless”, firmly outclassing Yi Tai Chu. His chest puffed out quite a bit, and a few more traces of fervor were apparent in his sneaky side glances to Long Juxue.
Bai Zhanyun stood on top of the stage in high spirits, as if he were the champion of the boxing ring. He surveyed the four corners proudly, “Who else wishes to come up and give a demonstration?”
Hong Tiantong felt that his level of Amethyst Cloud Palm was, at most, on par with Yi Taichu, roughly at the “Initial Flawless” level. He gave up decisively after some thought.
Bai Zhanyun became even more insufferably arrogant and laughed loudly upon seeing Hong Tiantong concede. His gaze settled on Jiang Chen’s face.
“Jiang Chen, if I remember correctly, you said I was very lucky just now. Surely you’ve practiced these two martial arts techniques to an impressive level?”
Bai Zhanyun was exceedingly self satisfied. He had long since taken a dislike to Jiang Chen. It would feel damn good to severely humiliate him, particularly on such an occasion.
Plus, Bai Zhanyun vaguely knew that the duke of Soaring Dragon coveted the Jiang Han plot of land with the spirit vein. Therefore, maybe he would be able to curry extra favor with Miss Juxue if he suppressed Jiang Chen at this gathering?
Bai Zhanyun’s call out made Jiang Chen the center of attention again.
Jiang Chen had bafflingly won over Yan Yiming earlier. The process had been supremely fast and many had not been able to see what had happened. They all thought it was a coincidence.
Jiang Chen counted; this was the fourth time that Bai Zhanyun had provoked him. He spat out a piece of chicken bone in his mouth back onto the table, sighing in resignation, “Why do so many lack brains in this world? You, Bai Zhanyun, have had your limelight, and your performance ranks first in this stage. Why must you seek to slap yourself in this face?”
“Slap myself?” Bai Zhanyun gave voice to unbridled laughter. “Jiang Chen, if you can slap my face, then I, Bai Zhanyun, will stand here and let you.”
Jiang Chen stood up slowly and said no more. He cast a look at Princess Gouyu, and walked onto the stage with a hint of a faint smile.
“Bai Zhanyun, you must be proud to have received a “Peak Flawless” commendation and to have beaten down the pack of contenders. Wouldn’t it be the icing on the cake if you found an unlucky fellow able to stomp on while you’re at the prime of your life? Isn’t that so? In this case, a so-called beauty would definitely look at you with different eyes, right? I have to say, you’re so naive, and an utter failure.”
“Naive? Failure?” Bai Zhanyun snorted lightly. “You’re an inferior good-for-nothing, a worthless loser who wouldn’t even pass the three foundational exams. What gives you the right to call me a failure?”
“It’s not that I’m calling you a failure, it’s that you really are one. You view the beauty as a heavenly phoenix, but she views you as a random dog on the street. You’ve repeatedly pretended that you’re all that in front of me, but don’t even know the reason for proclaiming that you’re so awesome. How can you say that you’re not a failure if you don’t even understand the reason for why you live, and waste your years in an attempt to realize an unrealistic dream?
Your set of Eastern King Point has won a standing ovation, and a commendation of “Peak Flawless”, but do you really think that your practice of Eastern King Point is truly flawless and invincible?
Since you’re so hopped up on your own triumph, and think that your Eastern King Point is so infallible, I shall give you a chance. Use the Eastern King Point on me with all your might, and I’ll let you understand what it means to be truly invulnerable!”
Jiang Chen’s eloquence knew no bounds. It was like the unceasing spring thunder, as it built up to a posture of dark clouds descending on a city in the blink of an eye.
A subconscious shift occurred in those present as the bystanders were slightly moved after Jiang Chen’s words.
“Jiang Chen? Are you challenging me? Are you sure you wish to use an egg to attack a rock?” Bai Zhanyun was completely unaffected and his face grimaced in a laugh, displaying a wild, ferocious smile.
“Cut the chatter and display your vaunted Eastern King Point. Let me see just how much an heir of the four great dukes is worth!”
In the eyes of the audience, one was a publicly recognized dandy in the initial realm of true qi with three meridians true qi.
The other was an heir to one of the four great dukes, recognized by the kingdom and in the advanced realm of true qi with eight meridians true qi.
These two people were not on the same level of existence. One could even say that under normal circumstances, a superior practitioner of eight meridians true qi would not even have interest in tormenting someone at three meridians true qi.
This distance between the two was simply too big.
But now, the one who had issued the challenge was the one in the initial realm of true qi!
“This Jiang Chen, was he caned into idiocy?”
“Challenging an advanced realm of true qi. This Jiang Chen is impatient for his own death!”
Even Jiang Feng, the duke of Jiang Han who had always allowed Jiang Chen to do as he wished, called out. “Chen’er, you…”
Jiang Chen raised his arm slightly with an air of ease, a faint sense of persuasiveness about him. This stopped Jiang Feng’s words in their tracks.
Princess Gouyu’s beautiful body shook slightly. In that moment, she had seen a type of confident demeanor that called for others to blindly follow!
“Has this kid truly gained divine patronage?” Princess Gouyu almost couldn’t prevent her thoughts from traveling down this path.
Bai Zhanyun laughed uproariously. “Alright, Jiang Chen, I’ve always disliked you. But I have to admit, you’re a man with balls.”
His footsteps moved slightly when he finished, and eight currents of true qi wound around his body. They circulated speedily, seeming to evaporate off his body like a divine purple halo.
“Eastern Amethyst Qi! He is truly a superior with eight meridians true qi, a genius!”
Jiang Chen stood stock still, his eyes squinted into a fine line, as if he was a meditating old monk.
“Empty posturing! It’s about time to end this!” Bai Zhanyun roared lowly as he lifted both feet off the ground. The purple qi circulating around his body turned into two currents of air as the divine purple halo seemed to materialize as two wings on his back, shooting him into the air.
Circulating purple qi, employing true qi. Fire and lightning seemed to wind around the tip of Bai Zhanyun’s finger, as a vague hint of purple qi formed within them, giving others a surprising sense of oppression.
“Sword from the West!”
Bai Zhanyun concentrated his qi into a blinding light. Woosh! Woosh! Woosh!
The strong qi almost seemed to ignore the laws of space, as it formed bizarrely shaped currents shooting towards Jiang Chen.
“Volant Fire Meteors!”
Blinding purple qi flew according to Bai Zhanyun’s motions. Qi covered the stage in the blink of an eye like a shower of meteors, locking onto the space within a radius of 100 meters and fully covering the entire battlefield.
Jiang Chen started to move his feet as Bai Zhanyun started activate his techniques. A few traces of mockery could be found on his lips. “Watch my poke as it stabs your right arm!”
Bai Zhanyun discerned the direction of the attack from the sound of the wind, but the piercing sound had already shot to his right arm when he heard Jiang Chen’s voice.
“Stabbing your left knee!”
Another point that was synchronized with the sound of the voice. Bai Zhanyun did not even have time to react before a numbing paralysis engulfed his left knee. It was obvious that he had been hit.
“Damnit!” Bai Zhanyun could not figure out why he was unable to dodge the hit when he could hear his opponent’s voice, and could anticipate what direction the point was coming from.
And, his opponent’s force was so gentle, almost weak!
“Third rib on the left!”
It was as if Jiang Chen was smoothly reciting a book. His poke reached Bai Zhanyun whenever he named a body part. Each poke was unearthly, ethereal, and completely untraceable.
Bai Zhanyun scrambled around in panic whenever Jiang Chen announced his next move, but he could never successfully dodge a single hit.
How maddening! Bai Zhanyun almost wanted to spit blood in his frustration.
In terms of force, he felt that he was more than ten times his opponent’s superior. In terms of body, he far outclassed the other. Even Princess Gouyu had highly praised his level of training.
But, he had a feeling of being constantly countered, an inability to utilize his strength; and could only passively take the hits when faced with someone from the initial realm of true qi.
It was as if the other anticipated his every move and was able to stay one step ahead of him despite not moving that quickly.
Bai Zhanyun became even more frustrated as he fought, but had to admit at the same time that if the other used just a bit more force, he would have probably been thumped into the ground many times over already.
Jiang Chen suddenly yelled, “Pause” in the middle of the fight, and dashingly retreated backwards to the side. He circulated his qi and poked a stone lock next to him.
The stone lock broke upon impact. It had been completely perforated.
“Bai Zhanyun, what would have happened if I used this level of force in my pokes just now?”
Bai Zhanyun was dumbfounded. He had felt frustrated beyond belief just now on the stage because he had been unable to fully deploy his strength.
But now, he felt a cold draft on his back as cold sweat poured out. After all that fighting, it wasn’t that his opponent lacked true qi, but that he had not used his full strength, and had pulled his punches.
Otherwise, he probably would have been flat on the ground after the first poke!
The onlookers watching the fight immediately deduced some of that conclusion, and complicated looks crept into their gazes as they looked at Jiang Chen.