Ancient Strengthening Technique

Ancient Strengthening Technique Chapter 32:  <<Basic Sword Techniques>>

After he finished reading the 3 medical books, Qing Shui felt that he had benefited immensely from the contents within. Especially from the <<Herbal Combination Formula>>, this book listed and explained the effects one would get by mixing various herbs together. For example, in some cases, when mixing two types of herbs of the healing element together, the end product may end up being poisonous. Conversely, when mixing two types of poisonous herbs, depending on their properties, the two herbs could actually end up complementing each other, nullifying the poisonous elements within and form an end product that could save lives!

The thick <<Herbal Combination Formula>> book mainly speaks of the complex relations and interactions between herbal properties, such as “warm”, “cold”, “wet”, “hot”, “cool”. The book also explains the effects and things to take note of when mixing medicine in great detail.

After receiving the nourishment of the Yin-Yang symbol in his sea of consciousness, Qing Shui’s memory could be said to have become perfect. Despite being unable to comprehend the entirety of the detailed information in such a short amount of time, he was still able to engrave the information in his mind. Every time he needed something, he could just refer to the information stored in his brain, akin to flipping the pages of a book.

In all job professions, the intricacies of each would be wide-ranging and profound.

Qing Shui knew that his wish to embark on the path of an alchemist could still be considered as extremely distant. It was unlike alchemists in MMORPGs, who could just throw a few herbs inside a cauldron and poof, a pill would be concocted. How could being an alchemist be so simplistic? Not to mention, in this world’s 9 continents, the alchemist profession was the one with the harshest conditions and highest requirements!

Taking one step at a time, with an effort that was worth 100 times, nay, 1000 times of others, and unyielding determination! These were all qualities that Qing Shui possessed, and in addition to his recently acquired spatial realm, they made him immensely confident.

Qing Shui could only enter the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal for 2 hours a day. After that, the natural limitations of the spatial realm would kick into place. This means that, for him, a single day could be compared to 15 days for others! Qing Shui was no fool, he deeply treasured the time lengthening effect of the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal and seized every chance he could to cultivate in there.

Normally, Qing Shui would purposely select the time period (9pm-11pm) to enter the spatial realm. This way, after the Zi period (11pm-1am), the limitations would reset and he could immediately use it again. During the daytime, Qing Shui would travel or slay beasts that were unfortunate enough to cross his path. However, ever since the encounter with the 3rd Grade Desolate Beast, White-Headed Inky Jade Condor, Qing Shui had no other dangerous encounters.

The fiery sun in the sky fiercely shone down on Qing Shui’s body, yet his body was entirely devoid of sweat. His body looked akin to a lithe leopard, with his muscles corded, yet not rigidly stiff.

Ever since Qing Shui obtained the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal, the lines of worries on his face had smoothed, making him appear more carefree and relaxed.

“F*** it, with my current looks, if I was in my previous world, I would be a top grade gigolo, dancing with the filthy rich cougars, eating them up and earning their money. However now, in this World of the Nine Continents, looks are useless! What I want is power, power!”  Everytime Qing Shui looked at his charming countenance in the water’s reflection, he began to involuntarily  cuss.

Qing Shui’s features were exquisite, without any hints of femininity. Either by nature or design, there was a look of cold indifference reflected on his face. Charisma reflected off the irises in his beautiful eyes. And the violet-colored pearl situated in the middle of his brows, actually had the feeling akin to a master painter adding the finishing touches, granting life to a portrait.

Despite Qing Shui gloomily messing up his hair, he was still good looking.In addition to that, there was the absence of even an ounce of excess fat on his graceful and lithe body. People looking at him would have nothing but compliments about his good looks.

On his journey, Qing Shui knew that as long as there were water sources, there would be beasts nearby. In this case, he did not need to worry about not having enough to eat! After his countless experiments with barbecuing, his skills could be said to have reach an unfathomably high level. The meat he roasted, be it the color or the taste and smell, were all of a high quality.

After travelling for an entire day, Qing Shui went in the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal to rest, after that he started to cultivate. Qing Shui’s current cultivation level only allowed him to hit the 48 cycles of circulated Qi. He clearly remembered that during the first heavenly layer of the Ancient Strengthening Technique, the requirement was to hit the 12 cycles of circulated Qi. At the second heavenly layer, the requirement was 24 cycles of circulated Qi. Now, at the third heavenly layer, the requirement was 48 cycles of circulated Qi… Could it be that for him to break into the next heavenly layer, following the pattern so far, he would need to cultivate to double the 48 cycles? To 96 cycles?

As he pondered, Qing Shui could not help but recall the instance when he broke through from 12 cycles to 13 cycles and 24 to 25 cycles of circulated Qi.

Bottleneck? Obstacles?

After contemplating, Qing Shui sighed, he knew that the path of cultivation was not easy to advance on. First, let’s not talk about breaking through to 49 cycles. Even after that, he still had to hit 96 cycles, 192 cycles and 386 cycles…

No wonder that practicing the Ancient Strengthening Technique to its zenith would allow one to gain a body comparable to the Gods and Demons. The practitioner would have his strength increased by increasing the number of circulation cycles. They would possess tyrannical might just based on their body strength alone!

Everytime he encountered a bottleneck, Qing Shui would circulate his Qi in order to break through. The backlash was no joke, in the past 5 years, any breakthroughs of 1 cycle to the next, would entail Qing Shui breaking through a bottleneck! Even though the bottleneck from one cycle to another was small, the pain was still extremely excruciating!

The Ancient Strengthening Technique holds two major bottlenecks. The first was from the 3rd layer to the 4th layer, breaking from lower to middle tier, and the second was from the 6th layer to the 7th layer, breaking from middle to top tier!

Circulating his Qi based on the Ancient Strengthening Technique, Qing Shui repeatedly tried to break through the barrier of the 48th cycle into the 49th to no avail. That obstacle was as unyielding as a huge mountain, and try as he might, he was still unable to budge it the slightest. Qing Shui gritted his teeth, ignoring and enduring the pain! This was precisely the point of the Ancient Strengthening Technique! Making use of the pain from the backlash in order to temper one’s body!

Sighing, Qing Shui decided to rest for now. It looks like it would not be so simple to break through the major bottleneck to the 4th heavenly layer of the Ancient Strengthening Technique.

Qing Shui took out the few books he had as he decided to use his time to fully comprehend the contents in each book. After taking them out his gaze fell to a rest on the untouched <<Basic Sword Techniques>>, although he had not yet read the book, he knew that the teachings in it would not be too profound. After all, the basic sword techniques, as its name stated, formed the basis of every swordplay in the World of the Nine Continents. As long as one was a user of the sword, at some point, one would surely have read this book!

Frowning, Qing Shui narrowed his eyes in suspicion. Why would such a common book have a spot in our Qing Clan Library?

“Forget it, I shall take a look first. Everyone in the World of the Nine Continents knows that the techniques within the <<Basic Sword Techniques>> are the lowest grade of sword play. Not to mention low grade, they are so weak that they can be considered as ungraded. Despite that, the foundations of every sword user is built from this! Most of the sword users read the book when they were young and only moved onto the more advanced sword arts after they mastered these basic techniques.

Flipping open the first page of the <<Basic Sword Techniques>>, the first page, other than listing out the title of the book, also had a parenthesis that marked the book in his hands as the initial volume. <<Basic Sword Techniques>> (Beginner). Could it be that there were (Intermediate) and (Profound) levels as well?

Ignoring this, he continued reading, “Introduction to Swords”.

The sword, was reputed to be the first amongst the myriad of weapons, emitting an intent of benevolence, suffused with a heroic aura! It could also be considered as the God of weapons and also possessed an air of elegance. So what makes up a sword? A sword comprises of the following: Sword Body, Sword Tip, Sword Sharpness, Sword Core, Sword Spine, Sword Edge, Sword Frame, Sword Hilt and Sword Sheath.

Following the introduction, next up was the various sword postures and methods. The main methods of attacking positions consist of: Hooking, Hanging, Pointing, Carrying, Piercing, Slicing, Hacking! During practice, the way of the sword requires the sword to follow one’s body, the sword user to use their body and guide the sword. When using the sword as a weapon, one must attain a state of oneness with the sword, one with the Qi, and one with the Spirit!

Looking at the elementary content which could be recited by any Martial Warrior, Qing Shui could not help but ask: “So how many of the millions of sword users can actually attain this state of oneness mentioned?” After all ,the more simple a thing was, the more profound the knowledge hidden within it would be. All the basics were derived from the learnings of millions of sword users, condensed down into their most basic form!

The way of Sword emphasizes “Speed, Accuracy, Decisiveness” Using these three words as the mantra to complement each of the basic sword attacking positions when practiced to the pinnacle, could kill with 1 hit, destroying your enemies with only a single strike!

The way of Sword also further emphasizes on hand-eye coordination, posture, footwork and form.

When the user of the sword art has cultivated it to its peak, any part of the sword can be used as a weapon! After attaining the stage of man and sword as one, amalgamating with the sword, and the next stage of heaven and man as one. The user himself, without his sword, can be considered as an unsheathed sharp sword!


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