Chapter 164 - A Test of Potential
“Only the complete state of the Innate realm?” Next to that red-faced elder were 7 other elders, each with three disciples by their side. When they heard that Xiao Yun was only at the Innate realm, they couldn’t help but smirk.
Manager Qin smiled serenely in response. He waved his hand casually and brought Xiao Yun onto the balcony
“Oh, I see everyone has arrived!” Manager Qin flashed a grin and bowed to the gathered crowd, then to the dark-robed man on the balcony. “Temple Master Jiang. This is Xiao Yun, the disciple I brought over from the Moonwind Kingdom,” Manager Qin said to the man.
“Temple Master Jiang.” Xiao Yun greeted the old man as well.
“There’s no need for such formalities. “ Temple Master Jiang calmly glanced over at Manager Qin. As his eyes landed on Xiao Yun, they immediately lit up. He said, half smiling, “So you are the young genius I’ve heard so much about. Your name was not lost on me - it carries quite a presence here. I hope you can prove yourself even here at the Core Temple.”
“I’ll be sure to meet the Temple Master’s expectations,” Xiao Yun responded.
“Good,” Temple Master Jiang said with a light nod.
“Expectations? What expectations could there possibly be for someone who’s only at the complete stage of the Innate realm?” A few of the other managers furrowed their brows and laughed.
“Why does Temple Master Jiang favor him so much? Is he a family member?” Some others wondered.
“No matter. Even if this Xiao Yun really were a relative of Temple Master Jiang, he still has to follow the Core Temple’s rules. Our scouted disciples still have the chance to climb the ranks. As long as the geniuses we uncovered don’t rank near only the bottom, the sect will reward us.” The other managers all had different thoughts about this situation.
Only Manager Qin remained calm, as if he didn’t really care much about these matters. His confidence towards Xiao Yun had increased after he heard about the latter’s accomplishments.
“Now that Manager Qin is here too, should we start ranking these disciples?” The elder in the linen shirt said with a smile in his eyes. By his side were three youths and a young maiden, all of them geniuses. As long as they could stand out in the Core Temple, he would be able to receive his corresponding credits and redeem his reward.
At their current level, if they could improve just one more step, they would be able to become Half Step Essence realm cultivators. Even though it was a small step, it would have quite the impact. Within the sect, Half Step Essence realm cultivators had a high status.
“Since everyone is here now, we can begin the ranking,” Temple Master Jiang said, his gaze becoming serious.
“That would be great.” The managers beside him smiled.
There were a total of 8 managers present, and they each had led a team to recruit new disciples from nations near the Heaven Origin Sect. With Manager Qin being an exception, there were 2 to 3 prodigies next to each manager, representing their results. Including Xiao Yun, there was a total of eighteen new recruits, with seventeen male and one female. They were all very young, around sixteen years or so, and there was almost no one older than seventeen. After being given instructions, Xiao Yun and the seventeen other people lined up next to the edge of the platform.
Temple Master Jiang stood next to a crystal pillar on the platform. Next to him were two youths from the Core Temple, both in their early 20s.
“You are the cream of the crop in your nations, and you all have boundless futures. However, there is no shortage of people like you within the Core Temple, so if you want to gain more resources, you must have the needed talent and skill.” Temple Master Jiang gazed at the eighteen youths before him and continued, “Within the Core Temple, your cultivation level when you first arrive is not the only thing we look at. Talent is the most important, and only those with enough talent have the potential to reach the highest peak of martial arts.” After a brief pause, Temple Master Jiang said, “Conversely, if you don’t have the talent, even if you have reached the later stages of the True Essence realm, your future potential is limited.”
The youths below the platform silently listened to Temple Master Jiang speak. This pertained to their future, after all.
“Therefore, talent is of the utmost importance. But even that is forfeit if you are all talent and no diligence.”
Having listened to this point, two out of the eighteen gathered prodigies let out a breath of relief. These two were a bookish young man and a girl with a strong aura. They were both Innate realm cultivators, and if their current cultivation were to determine their worth, they both wouldn’t be able to rank very high.
The girl in particular had just seemed incredibly nervous, because she was only in the late stages of the Innate realm, and she was just a step away from the complete state. If she were to be ranked by her power, she would be at the bottom. Now, it seemed like she had a fighting chance, so after she heard Temple Master Jiang speak, her eyes glimmered and she sighed in relief.
Xiao Yun wasn’t too worried, and he calmly listened to the Temple Master.
“Within the Core Temple, there are a total of sixty-five new disciples and one hundred and eighty older disciples. Whether you’re old or new, you’re given resources based on your rank. Your batch is eighteen people, and you’ll be given a preliminary ranking as well.” Temple Master Jiang continued, “Since all of you recently joined, ranking will separated into two steps. First, we will look at your innate talent, and then your current ability. The score for innate talent will be higher, and you will be graded on a hundred-point scale. Your ability score will be based on your placement in a competition. You will fight a total of four rounds and gain five points per win. If you win all of them, you will gain twenty points.”
“A hundred-point scale?” The youths below the platform began to mutter among themselves once they heard this. Some were happy, while others were nervous. If the innate talent test was out of one hundred points, then even if those with high innate talent lost in the ability competition, they would still be able to rank decently.
The Heaven Origin Sect sure is fair. Xiao Yun quietly nodded his head. This way, those who had a great amount of innate talent but were born into a situation in which they couldn’t get proper training wouldn’t have to worry. As long as they received sufficient resources, they could improve by leaps and bounds, able to surpass even those who had high cultivation.
“We will now commence the measurement of innate talent,” Temple Master Jiang said solemnly.
As Temple Master’s Jiang’s voice rang out, a young man behind him stepped forward.
“Liu Zhong, come forth to be tested.” The young man glanced at the roster in his hand.
“Yes!” A youth responded enthusiastically, his gaze flashing gleefully and feverishly as he trotted over to the the crystal pillar ahead.
The crystal pillar was nearly four feet, and a sparkling crystal ball was embedded at the top of the pillar. One could vaguely see runes shining on the crystal ball, and a complex formation was carved into it, which seemed to encompass infinite possibilities.
This was the crystal ball used for measurement. Not only was this precious crystal ball forged from Great Essence Origin Crystal, even the formation carved into it was extraordinary. Normally, it would be difficult for even a kingdom to find such a measurement crystal; only large sects like the Heaven Origin Sect would be able to get their hands on it.
“Channel your elemental essence or Martial Spirit through the crystal ball, and it will give you your grade,” the young man instructed.
Temple Master Jiang stood to the side, waiting for the test results. The eight managers also stood to the side and watched silently with hope in their eyes.
Liu Zhong walked to the crystal pillar, his eyes feverish and focused ahead, and silently channeled his inner essence. A strong force emanated from his open palms. If one looked carefully, one could see an earth colored essence within the crystal ball, which immediately activated the formation within the crystal ball.
The crystal ball flickered with light, and a earth colored circle appeared around it. Finally, a waterline on the crystal pillar began to rise. There were markings from one to one hundred, representing the spiritual abilities of the examinee or the quality of the Martial Spirit.
The higher the waterline reached during the test, the stronger the innate talent. Even within spirit bodies, there were categories like half-spirit bodies, pseudo-spirit bodies, and innate spirit bodies, etc. Martial Spirits were the same. Some people only awaken 10% of their potential, while others awaken 20%, and despite the small difference, they will often be a lot stronger, with a great difference in innate talent and potential. In order to truly discover someone’s true worth, this kind of test was essential.
The waterline on the crystal pillar started to rise, captivating everyone on the platform. The portly manager who had scouted Liu Zhong was especially nervous, his body tight with stress.
In the span of a breath, the waterline had risen by ten, and it looked like it would continue to rise. Liu Zhong nervously looked at the continuously rising waterline as he too continued to channel his inner essence into the crystal ball.
Finally, the marker stopped at twenty-seven.
“It stopped?” Liu Zhong looked at the waterline, and the earth-colored essence stopped rising. He furrowed his brows and continued to channel his essence to try to make the waterline rise, but the crystal ball was no longer absorbing his essence, and the waterline did not show any signs of rising.
“That’s enough, you can stop now,” the young man said, his gaze firm.
Hearing this, Liu zhong reluctantly released his hand. The crystal ball shimmered, and the earth-colored essence within the crystal ball disappeared. On the crystal ball, a rune emerged and vibrated in the air, and a three-foot-long curtain of light appeared, upon which a row of words faded into view.
Liu Zhong: Earth attribute, 27% spirit body, inferior constitution!
“Inferior?” Looking at this one word, Liu Zhong’s face fell. He couldn’t hide his disappointment as he said, “How could it be inferior? I had the fastest cultivation within the Falling Moon Kingdom. How can I be inferior?” He despaired at seeing his results.
“Alright, your innate talent score is twenty-seven points,” the young man said, “This is your Identity Token.”
He handed a badge to Liu Zhong. This badge had all of his information, including the result of the innate talent test he just took. All the disciples in the Core Temple had one.
“Twenty-seven points?” Liu Zhong took the badge and walked dejectedly to the side.
“Don’t be discouraged. In Nanjiang, anyone with a spirit body is already considered a genius. Your spirit body is worth 27%, and you still have extraordinary potential. Let’s take a look at the others’ results,” the portly manager comforted.