Ancient Strengthening Technique

AST 275 Crushing Yan Clan Within 3 to 5 Years, Shake Up Lion King’s Ridge


“Goddess Peak is within Flower Fruit Mountain!”  Qing Shui rubbed his nose and said bitterly.


Canghai Mingyue was stunned for a moment. Her beautiful eyes flashed as she nodded like she was deep in thought!


“Mingyue, is that Flower Fruit Mountain really treacherous? What cultivation must one be to be able to enter and exit it unharmed?” Qing shui looked at the treasure map, with a strong urge to charge over to see what good stuff there was!


“Flower Fruit Mountain is a well-known dangerous spot in Greencloud Continent. One who is not at least at the pinnacle of Martial King is better off not entering.” Canghai Mingyue said gently.


Qing Shui could hear a hint of concern in her voice. Although it seemed to be inadvertent, Qing Shui could clearly sense it!


Qing Shui nodded helplessly, telling himself that once he broke through to the 5th heavenly layer, he would check out the place for himself. The location marked on the treasure map was at the bottom of Goddess Peak!


“Next time, let’s go and go hunt for the treasure.” Qing Shui said casually to the two ladies.


“Mmm mmm!” Huoyun Liu-Li nodded happily. It seemed like she was very enthusiastic about this matter. Canghai Mingyue only smiled and did not say anything.


The Fire bird and the Golden Winged Thunder Condor were parallel to each other as they soared through the air. While the trio’s weight was nothing much, they still decided to alternate between the two daily, allowing them to rest for 4 hours each day. As for themselves, they could take turns to rest. Lying on the wide back of the birds was even more comfortable than lying on a bed.


During the rest period of four hours, Qing Shui would enter the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal to train. Training the Ancient Strengthening Technique after the 90th cycle was very smooth-sailing. It was just that the energy he needed to garner and accumulate was too much.


However, the effects were very good. In half a month’s time, he had already reached the 92th cycle. This made Qing Shui both overjoyed and speechless at the same time. Half a month’s time in the real world was equivalent to having spent over a year in the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal, and from the 91th cycle to the 99th cycle, the amount of “energy” required to be accumulated had increased by leaps and folds.


At this pace, if he did not have the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal, just training these few cycles alone would have take him tens of years…


The more Qing Shui thought about it, the more he felt that the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal was specially catered to match the Ancient Strengthening Technique. Without the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal, even if Qing Shui was extremely talented, he could not dream of going far on the path of the Ancient Strengthening Technique.


However, things were different with the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal. Qing Shui did not know if the regulations of the realm could be raised. For example, he could only stay in it for 4 real world hours right now. Would he ever be able to stay in there for 6 hours, 8 hours, or could it possible for the ratio of the time between the real world and the time in the realm become 1:100, 1:200 or even higher?


Qing Shui only thought about it, but he did not hold too much hope for it. It was already a heaven-defying treasure in the state it was in now, not at all losing out to the Ancient Strengthening Technique at all. Because of this insane time ratio, whatever he was cultivating would reach an astonishing extent.


If he was not able to crush the Yan Clan or shake up Lion King’s Ridge, despite having the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal and the Ancient Strengthening Technique, it would be so embarrassing that he would want to die.


However, Qing Shui shook his head. He must definitely crush Yan City in 3 to 5 years time, or even shorter. And with regards to shaking up of Lion King’s Ridge, Qing Shui smiled bitterly as if he was laughing at his own foolishness. He knew that it would already be considered good if he was able to do so in 20 years. Moreover, there are some things which a person would not be able to accomplish alone.


Sitting on the Fire bird and the Golden Winged Thunder Condor daily, the only thing that made Qing Shui happy was looking at the great rivers and streams, and looking down on all living things and looking up on the starry skies. It was a wonderful feeling to be able to do so.


Once again, while travelling with the two ladies, they would only chat if they were bored, but they would tend to talk about insignificant matters. For example, what famous people there were in which place, what high class places there were, major sects and aristocratic families, interesting cultural events, and the different levels of demonic beasts.


Sometimes, they would also chat about the Heavenly Palace. Huoyun Liu-Li did not know much about it, but Canghai Mingyue knew a little. After all, Canghai used to share quite a lot in the past with her and she was also full of admiration for Canghai. Therefore, she could remember many things which Canghai had shared with her clearly.


“Heavenly Palace is the oldest sect in the Greencloud Continent and it has hundreds of thousands of disciples, each of them being elites. The condition for one to enter the sect is for the person to have at least reached Xiantian, and have a clean background. Even the trusted members’ children will not be able to enter if they were not of at least at Xiantian level.” Canghai Mingyue recalled and shared, her expression very dim.


Qing Shui knew that she had thought of her parents again. Looking at her down crested expression, Qing Shui daringly picked up her hand, and gently yet firmly grasped it.


Canghai Mingyue panicked, lifting her head towards Qing Shui who was smiling at her. His beautiful eyes were extremely clear, and he had a gaze as if it was a father’s love and a bit of intoxication.


Huoyun Liu-Li reached out her hand and said, “Me too!”


Qing Shui grabbed onto her snow white and soft little hand with his free hand. At this moment, he felt very satisfied. Although it was not the case that he was hugging a lady in each of his arms, it was the first time that he was able to hold the hands of two ladies at the same time like he was doing now.


A sense of satisfaction surged within him. All men would feel like this if they were put in the same spot. The start of a relationship between a man and a woman would tend to start from holding hands. If a woman did not mind the man holding her hand, it would at least mean that he had already taken a spot in her heart, and she had started to attempt to accept him.


Qing Shui held onto both ladies, while Canghai Mingyue once again looked seriously at this man who was a few years younger than her. She felt like she had changed. While she was sure that she had not fallen in love with him, she realized that she was not able to leave him. Sometimes, she only wanted to see him, see the way he looked, facing all matters that come his way, undaunted.


She had only seen his fragile side the one time when they were in Yan City, and the time when he was in his dreams. However, at that moment, she noticed that she herself would feel very upset as well.


Qing Shui was embarrassed by Canghai Mingyue, who was looking at him in a stupor. He stuck out his index finger and gently tickled Canghai Mingyue’s palm.


Canghai Mingyue came back to her senses and immediately dropped her head. Only then did Qing Shui recall what she had said. The requirement for one to enter the Heavenly Palace was to have at least Xiantian cultivation, and it had over hundreds of thousands of disciples. This was the true power of a sect which had been passed down for tens of thousands of years.


“The Heavenly Palace is divided into 9 powers, 9 halls. The Sovereign takes charge of one of the hall, and Lingxiao Treasure Hall belongs to the Sovereign’s faction!” Canghai Mingyue lowered her head and said softly.


When Qing Shui heard the name Lingxiao Treasure Hall, while he was slightly stunned, it was not out of his expectation. After all, even the Heavenly Palace had appeared. Techniques such as the Heavenly Thunder Slash and the Divinity Protection had also appeared, so the appearance of the Lingxiao Treasure Hall would not be surprising.


Hearing that there were 9 halls, Qing Shui suddenly recalled that he had read about the difference between palace, hall, building, pavilion buildings, study, lobby, pavilion and veranda. In fact, these were also described in the Forging Arts in his mind. It was just that he did not hold much interest in the Forging Arts, at least for the time being.


A palace was a place intended for residential purposes. In ancient times, private residences were named as “palaces”. For example, the Moon Palace was Chang-E’s[1] private residence. However, a large sect can also be termed as a palace, so palace halls and such were all subsets of palaces.


Many people termed them palaces which were used as a place for them to gather and house discussions as halls or lobbies. They were all located in palaces!


Building refers to housing or structures that had at least two or more storeys. It also had the name of “double-layered buildings”.


The location of buildings were mostly behind palace halls, used generally as bedrooms, studies, or as a spot to appreciate the scenery. As tall as most other buildings, they frequently became one of the sceneries in the garden, especially when it was located in a favorable feng shui location, facing water and had mountains behind ut.


Pavilion buildings were similar to buildings, but they were slightly smaller. They tended to have a squarish or polygon shaped base and they were mostly built in 2 storeys with windows facing all directions. They tend to be used as libraries, as a viewing platform for sceneries, or they could also be used to enshrine large sized buddhist sculptures or as female living quarters.


Pavilions tend to be smaller in size with exquisite designs. They could be built in any location in the garden, and they were mainly used as a resting spot or a place to provide shelter from rain.


The structure of a pavilion was very simple. The spaces between each pillar tended to be spread apart, with half a wall on the lower half of the pillar. The base of a pavilion could either be a polygon, a rectangle, a square, a circle, or a combination. Its structure could be single-ledged or multiple-ledged.


A study tends to be used as a place set aside for working, learning or reading and such.


“What about the other 8 halls? Do you know what those halls are?” Qing Shui asked, embarrassed, after he had regained his senses.


“The other 8 halls are said to be less weaker compared to the Lingxiao Treasure Hall. After all, Lingxiao Treasure Hall was where the Sovereign was located and it is the symbol of Heavenly Palace. I don’t know the exact names of the other 8 halls either.” Canghai Mingyue attempted to pull her hand back, but she had not succeeded. Qing Shui once again stuck his index finger out to tickle her palm.


That feeling she had was not one of her palm being tickled, but rather, it was as if he was feeling her heart. It was a special feeling, making her feel slightly anxious, but yet, expecting at the same time.


“This was the situation a few decades back. I’m not sure how it has changed. However, such major sects tend not to have many changes in a century.” Canghai Mingyue glared at Qing Shui and said. She realized that she tended to not know how to deal with Qing Shui. No one else dared to take advantage of her nor act so shamelessly in front of her. He was the only one who did without care and sometimes acted so shamelessly…


Other than chatting with the two ladies or looking down on the scenery, Qing Shui would spend most of his time lying on the fire bird’s back, submerging into his consciousness, as if he was sleeping, and looking at the massive amount of information.


Qing Shui was interested in the many names and appearances of various rare plants that came with Alchemy, as well as the metallic materials for the Ancient Art of Forging. For example, the star steel, flint steel, 10,000 year coldsteel which was much more stronger than the 1,000 year coldsteel, mystic stone, stone essence, moonstone, 10,000 year peach wood, diamond stone, Icesoul Divine Stone, Celestial Stone and God Metal...


Qing Shui never did have the time to look through the list of precious medicinal herbs, ingredients and seasonings required for creating condiments for the nurturing path, so he casually browsed through them as well.  Ever since he started cultivating the Ancient Strengthening Technique and the image of Yin-Yang appeared in his consciousness, Qing Shui realized that he had almost reached a stage where he would be able to remember things with just one look.


Qing shui did not continue to look at the Nine Animals Mimicry Technique since everything after the Crane Form was in grey. Even if he wanted to learn them, he would not be able to. Qing Shui guessed that he would not be able to learn the others before he managed to reach the great perfection stage for the Crane Form.


He only had a miserable amount of experience in alchemy and he was only lacking the Beauty Fruit to be able to concoct the Beauty Pellet.


“I wonder if the beautiful lady who had used the prescription for the Beauty Pellet as a trade for one of my weapons is from the Joyous Sect. If she is, then what status does she have there? She can’t be just a person with a low status in the sect to be able to bring 5 million worth of silver notes.” Qing Shui suddenly thought of the beautiful lady.

[1] Wife of Hou Yi - same Hou Yi in Desolate Era (divine archer that shot down the nine suns), the mythical chinese moon goddess who flew to the moon and stayed there with her rabbit.

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