Chapter 45 – Shatter the Nine Paths of Truth
Wang Yanfeng’s entire body revolved with an intense aura of true essence. He did not even wait for Lin Ming to finish stepping on stage before he gave a loud shout, and the three foot long saber in his hand began to radiate with bright runes. There were ten runes in total; nine green runes were congealed from Wang Yanfeng’s true essence, and the last was from the inscription symbol left behind by the inscription master.
“The ‘Nine Paths of Truth’ swordsmanship was a family skill that was given to the head of the Wang Family after he performed a great military deed. The first emperor of Sky Fortune Kingdom had bestowed this skill to Yuelu City’s Wang Family so that it could be passed down and studied by future generations. This Wang Yanfeng relied on only his early Third Stage of Body Transformation cultivation to already reach the boundary of forming nine runes. Although this is almost the most basic level of green runes, it is still impressive!”
The onlooking elders commented as they watched the fight. They had vast experience and could easily determine Wang Yanfeng’s martial skill, as well as its level and origin.
“The ‘Nine Paths of Truth’ can display its true power if used in conjunction with a rare weapon. The aristocratic family juniors are truly on a different playing field than others. They have martial arts handed down through their family line and also treasures that easily cost several thousand gold taels. Compared to commoner martial artists, they are much better off.”
“Lin Ming is in danger. He’s just a regular boy. What kind of martial skill could he possibly have to fend off the ‘Nine Paths of Truth’?”
On stage, Lin Ming’s eyes shined brilliantly as he looked at the green runes on Wang Yanfeng’s saber. Before studying inscription techniques, he first had to study the soul law formula, and develop the ability to control his own soul force. Lin Ming had studied the apex level soul law formula, ‘Overbearing Soul Tactic’. With this, Lin Ming was extremely sensitive to the flow of true essence within rare treasures or objects. As long as he extended his soul force, he could clearly understand all things.
“I can feel Wang Yanfeng is using some sort of martial skill, but even if I can sense it, I’m not too familiar with martial skills; there is simply no way for me to find out where the flaw is. But when looking at inscription techniques and equipment, there might be no one in the entire Sky Fortune Kingdom who can understand them better than I do. I can clearly identify vulnerability within the flow of true essence…”
As Lin Ming was thinking deeply about this, Wang Yanfeng had already grasped his sword and rushed forwards. He would close the distance and use his family martial skill, the ‘Nine Paths of Truth’ and in the next several moves, finally solve this problem called Lin Ming, while increasing his own reputation.
True essence gathered in the longsword and it whistled with a sharp, keening sound. This was an advantage of using treasures; once true essence was focused, it would enhance one’s imposing image and strength, thereby increasing their momentum. Facing this, along with the aura of power, a martial artist with no treasures would discover that they felt incapable of any resistance, because even if they tried to compete with weapons, their own would likely break off at first contact!
“Lin Ming, prepare to die!”
Wang Yanfeng shouted out as the nine symbols on his saber began to bloom with an incandescent green light. As soon as the long sword cut down, an immense sword pressure struck at Lin Ming’s shoulder. Lin Ming’s pupils widened and his both his feet suddenly slammed the ground as his body moved like a bolt of lightning.
As Wang Yanfeng’s saber cut into the ground, explosions scattered broken stone into the air. This blue stone stage was supported by a magic array and was as hard as iron, but still, Wang Yanfeng’s blade had cut a hole half a foot deep! The power of this single strike was just too much!
Even though his saber did not hit, Wang Yanfeng did not feel any sadness, but instead laughed. “Lin Ming! You want to compare speed with me!? Not only do you have some small inborn divine strength but it seems your speed isn’t too shabby either, but what a pity! You cannot use any movement martial skills!
“Speed!? How can pitiful you even think of comparing with me, Wang Yanfeng!?” As soon as he said this, Wang Yanfeng’s footsteps changed. His body had changed to an indistinct, blurry afterimage.
“Seven Despairing Steps! The Wang Family’s movement martial skill!”
“This is one of the Wang Family’s secret martial skills. In seven steps one can appear and disappear at will, and its speed surpasses the ghosts and gods. The old aristocratic families really make one jealous!”
“The weapon is weaker, the martial skill is weaker, the movement is weaker, how can one even fight like this?”
As they were talking, Wang Yanfeng moved seven steps and instantly appeared at Lin Ming’s side. The radiant green line appeared once again as the nine runes shimmered with true essence. The saber cut down at Lin Ming’s arm!
It was against the law to kill others during a competition at the Seven Profound Martial House, otherwise they would receive a severe punishment from the school. Therefore Wang Yanfeng had cut at Lin Ming’s arm. Although this strike would not be lethal, but it could break his bone and rip apart the tendons of his arm. Even with superior medicines to repair the bone and mend the muscles, the arm would be mostly useless and would greatly inhibit later cultivation.
This was an insidious blade filled with malice!
Wang Yanfeng’s mouth traced a sneering grin. ‘Are you not some kind of talent? Then I’ll cut off the road of talent and see how you dare to ever struggle against me again!’
This was the reason of his blade, and he could not think of the slightest reason that he would lose. However, at this time, Lin Ming shouted, fiercely swiveled on the ball of his foot and thrusted out his fist!
This was a non-flashy, even fist that would bring at least 3000 jins of overbearing might!
The center of the first hit the blade edge of Wang Yanfeng’s saber. This was the only vulnerability that Lin Ming had discovered in the weapon where the true essence was at its most weak and turbulent point!
With the speed at which Wang Yanfeng wielded his saber, the difficulty of striking this precise spot was inconceivable. If not for the years that Lin Ming had spent deboning and honing the accuracy of his moves until every action became a memory that was ingrained within his muscles, then even If he could grasp the flaw within the inscription symbol, it would only have been useless.
In the space of that brief moment, Wang Yanfeng only felt a sudden chaotic surge in true essence transmit through his body as the flow of energy in the saber was interrupted. If the concentration of true essence in the saber was like a deadly emerald snake, then Lin Ming’s first was a hatchet that cut off the snake around the middle, seven inches up its body!
As soon as flow of true essence stagnated, Wang Yanfeng felt pain wrack his body as his blood dangerously upwelled. Before he could unravel the meaning of what had happened, Lin Ming had let loose a leg and kicked towards Wang Yanfeng’s head.
Every day for several years, Lin Ming had been training his leg on tree stumps. The simplistic strength of this strike had been tempered by deeply constant pain that had only been quenched by iron thread grass. This was the terrifying strength that had been cultivated by practicing the ‘Chaotic Virtues Combat Meridians’; it was no different to an explosion of pure force!
Lin Ming’s leg was like a dragon’s tail as it kicked out, but Wang Yanfeng also had some capability. Even as his mind reeled, he managed to stiffly raise an arm to block Lin Ming’s leg.
However, when Lin Ming’s kicked struck Wang Yanfeng’s arm, Wang Yanfeng only could feel as if a thick iron rod struck him. His arm immediately lost feeling and he almost passed out from the pressure.
Wang Yanfeng’s heart was shocked. What was this abnormal power!?
With a jolt of surprise at the change in the battle’s tempo, the hearts of the elders present were equally shocked. That simple fist was not so simple! The candidates who were watching could not notice anything strange, but these were houtian masters, they had easily captured the mystery behind the meaning of that simple fist!
This Lin Ming, how could he possibly do this?
The kick sent Wang Yanfeng flying backwards into the air. Before he had even exhausted a single breath, he could see in his vision the sight of Lin Ming instantly approaching.
“Seven Despairing Steps!” Wang Yanfeng pedaled his feet with the ‘Seven Despairing Steps’ and his body completely violated the rules of physics, as he suddenly swerved sideways and escaped Lin Ming’s fist. But with this sudden change in direction, along with the damage he had taken earlier, Wang Yanfeng could no longer control the rampaging true essence that ravaged his body, and spat a mouthful of blood. This time Wang Yanfeng felt panic seep into his heart. Initially he had thought that his strength had been weakened in the Exquisite Pagoda with the decrease in strength of the ‘Nine Paths of Truth’ and thus was only able to reach the fourth floor and die together with the two vicious beasts. He had thought if only he had his rare saber with him, then he would be completely confident in reaching the fifth floor with ease and even slaughtering many vicious beasts there. Instead, he was now being suppressed so heavily by Lin Ming? At this time, could Lin Ming also kill the vicious beasts of the fifth floor?
The ‘Nine Paths of Truth’ that he was so proud of and had so arrogantly bragged about had been completely defeated; this made Wang Yanfeng feel a deep and foreboding sense of humiliation. Before he could even think about how to retaliate against the loathsome maggot, that Lin Ming had already rushed forward again. This time Lin Ming used his knife!
“I’ll cut your knife!”
Because he had just exhausted a great deal of true essence earlier, he could only use about half of his true essence. Wang Yanfeng did not have any time to utilize the ‘Nine Paths of Truth’, he could only focus all of the true essence he could muster in the saber and rely on its strength, sharpness, and superior quality to block Lin Ming. He had already concluded that if he blocked with his saber then Lin Ming would have to withdraw his knife, otherwise his knife would be cut apart.
However he did not imagine that Lin Ming would not retract his knife, but even meet the saber head on with just a deboning knife!
With a fierce explosion, in the crazy collision of true essence the deboning knife was cut apart!
Wang Yanfeng did not even have time to be surprised, as Lin Ming already gave a loud shot and the deboning knife exploded into several sharp fragments.
Puff! These fragments were like a concealed weapon that blew up like a bomb that shot out in all directions!
With such a short distance and the immediate surprise of a weapon like this, Wang Yanfeng could not even dodge, even though he possessed the ‘Seven Despairing Steps’!
“Ah ah ah ah ah ah!!”
Wang Yanfeng cried out pitifully as his shoulder, belly, and thighs were stabbed by the fragments of the deboning knife and blood flew in all directions. A fragment had even directly pierced through his shoulder!
Lin Ming sent a flying kick towards Wang Yanfeng’s chest. Wang Yanfeng spat out a mouthful of blood as he was sent reeling backwards; that instant kick had broken his ribs and sent him flying upside down like a broken kite!
As Lin Ming’s kick sent Wang Yanfeng flying, Elder Xu was flew out like a cheetah and the chair he was sitting in was smashed apart by a burst of true essence.
Elder Xu stormed onto the stage like the wind and caught the heavily injured Wang Yanfeng. He immediately took out a medicine bottle from his sleeves and applied it to him. He was old friends with Wang Yanfeng’s father, so he naturally had to look after him. With Wang Yanfeng injured to this extent, how could he explain this to his friend?
After applying the precious medicine, Elder Xu looked gloomy as he stared at Lin Ming, “You little boy, so young and yet already your actions are so ruthless!”
As Elder Xu said this, each word was enhanced with true essence and was like a steel ball striking, full of momentum.
Facing the pressure from a Houtian master, Lin Ming’s eyes narrowed as he secretly revolved the ‘True Primal Chaos Formula’ within himself and resisted the pressure. His expression was neutral as he said, “If you say I am vicious, then what is not vicious? Wang Yanfeng tried to cut apart my arm a moment ago, should I just extend it and let him do as he pleases? If I did not retaliate with a fist and my arm was cut off, would you then say Wang Yanfeng is vicious?”
“Good! You dare to talk back!?” Elder Xu suddenly stepped forwards as he flared with murderous intent. It felt as if this Elder Xu was like a tiger that had chosen its victim and was ready to leap out.