Chapter 121 – The Vanished Blood Symbol
Relying on his pure soul force and deep reserves of true essence, Lin Ming was able to continuously persist throughout the entire afternoon. During this time period, he reached the limit of his ability several times. But, this was also a method of practice. Without being pushed to the limit, it would be difficult to progress.
When his true essence neared complete consumption, Lin Ming never begrudged himself to pull out a true essence stone and then enter into the ethereal martial intent state. Under the state of ethereal martial intent, the true essence throughout Lin Ming’s body would spontaneously move at a pace several times faster than normal, with a near perfect path of circulation. Under this cultivation state, his advancement was very fast.
Gradually, the sun began to fall down below the western horizon. The light that once peeked into the room began to dim down. Wang Yuhan lit a lamp. Seeing that Lin Ming was still sitting in meditation and regulating his breathing, she hesitated several times as she debated whether or not to disturb him. After a while, Wang Yuhan could not bear it anymore, and she finally said, “Mister Lin, this… we should eat a meal…”
“Oh? Yes, of course, you eat first. Just bring me back something nice. I’m almost done adjusting my condition, and then I will finish this inscription symbol drawing first.”
Drawing another one?
Wang Yuhan was at a loss for words; this would be the seventh one.
To draw up seven inscription symbols in the afternoon, and not only that, but each one being very complex, with dozens of symbols and lines that needed to fuse together… not even a top-level inscription master would be able to persist through such a task.
Wang Yuhan no longer compared herself to Lin Ming, but placed Lin Ming as a level of character similar to her own grandfather.
Shaking her head, Wang Yuhan headed down to have dinner. After eating dinner, she came back, and sure enough, Lin Ming had begun already drawing the seventh inscription symbol, and was almost halfway done.
Wang Yuhan moved to the side and set down the plate of food that she had brought up. She quietly watched every movement of Lin Ming, earnestly committing them to memory, and occasionally she would even subconsciously reach out her hand, and follow Lin Ming’s movements. Although she knew that even if she copied these movements, it was to no avail of discerning the deep mysteries within them.
As time slowly passed, Wang Yuhan looked at those gorgeous and brilliant inscription lines, and then turned to Lin Ming. She watched as his fingertips danced in the air, and shimmering lights followed his incomparably smooth control of true essence. She also saw the fine beads of sweat that covered his face, and his incomparably focused expression.
Gradually, Wang Yuhan entered a state like she was lost in a trance. Her vision unconsciously moved from Lin Ming’s face to his fingers and back again. At that moment, she felt like she had been infected by the young boy’s dedicated focus.
Wang Yuhan finally snapped out of her daze as Lin Ming let out a light fu! sound. The several dozens of inscription symbols and lines began to condense into one, and with that sparkle of light, Wang Yuhan managed to regain her composure. She was somewhat flustered, and her pretty face blushed.
“Seventh!” Lin Ming let loose a long breath and completely collapsed back into his chair. Now, he didn’t even have the strength to move a finger.
“The… Mister Lin, the food is getting cold.”
“Oh.’ Lin Ming propped himself up and received the plate of food. He took big gulping bites as he ate. Wang Yuhan was sitting somewhat cramped at the side, quietly gazing at the hourglass in the room, watching the sand fall, grain by grain.
“In the foundation lines, when drawing up the ‘rock’ pattern, it is better to add a fold-shaped structure.” Lin Ming mindlessly remarked after finishing half of his meal.
Wang Yuhan was slightly stunned, and then felt a great happiness followed by an overwhelming exultation. Lin Ming was teaching her inscription techniques! This kind of inscription technique was from beyond the borders of the Sky Fortune Kingdom, and moreover its degree of exquisiteness and subtlety far surpassed anything that the Sky Fortune Kingdom school of inscription could ever hope to achieve.
By now Lin Ming had recovered some of his true essence. He readily drew out a ‘rock’ line pattern in the air, slowing his tempo as much as he could so that Wang Yuhan had time to clearly see the changes in soul force. In particular, when drawing that folded-pattern, he lowered the speed to a bare minimum. Lin Ming knew what the driving reason was behind Wang Yuhan’s request to serve as his assistant. She had accompanied him for an entire afternoon, helped a great deal, and also expended much of her own true essence and soul force. Yet, the things she could learn were extremely limited.
She was a girl who was also the beloved granddaughter of the Inscription Association’s president. Such a proud girl had actually dropped her reservedness to act as his assistant for this afternoon. If Lin Ming didn’t return the favor, then he would have felt bad about himself.
Therefore in the free time that he had while eating his meal, Lin Ming continuously taught Wang Yuhan several foundation lines. Although just learning these basic foundation lines was far from being able to use them in any sort of practical application, Lin Ming believed that with Wang Yuhan’s aptitude towards inscription, along with her unceasing efforts to strive towards greater heights of inscription technique, that she would inevitably be able to derive a great deal of inspiration from this in the future.
“Thank you, Mister Lin.” Wang Yuhan said with a heartfelt expression of gratitude.
“I want to thank you instead.”
“Is… will Mister Lin be coming back tomorrow?”
“Tomorrow? Mm, I should come back sometime in the afternoon. In the morning I have to practice at the Seven Profound Martial House.” Because of the core disciple test, the Seven Profound Martial House had promised that Lin Ming would be able to use the seven major killing arrays for ten full days. Time at the seven major killing arrays was extremely valuable. It would be a waste if he didn’t use it because he was practicing inscription techniques instead.
“Can I also be your assistant for tomorrow?” Wang Yuhan asked with anticipation.
Lin Ming brightly smiled and said, “Of course you can.”
That evening, Lin Ming returned to the Seven Profound Martial House and began to digest what he had learned by practicing today.
In the afternoon, Lin Ming had spent three and a half hours to draw up a total of seven inscription symbols. The materials for these inscriptions were all precious. Lin Ming had many faults in drawing up the inscription symbols, which caused some of the materials to be wasted. However, he hadn’t yet encountered a situation in which the inscription symbol would go out of control and then collapse with an explosion.
As long as the whole thing didn’t come tumbling down in a fiery explosion, some errors could be tolerated.
According to the regulations of the Inscription Association, customers had to pay the reward with materials. The total price of the service was twice that of the materials used, sometimes they also needed to pay certain fees for services rendered.
Of the materials that were left over, 60% went to the guest inscription master, and 40% went to the Inscription Association.
Lin Ming took a few materials that he could use for himself and exchanged the rest with the Inscription Association for points.
“At the rate I’m earning points, I’ll probably have enough points after ten more days to buy some of the materials I need from the inscription Association. As for the rarer materials, I’ll need to wait until my inscription technique improves further, and only then will I have a chance of getting them. The materials for those two body inscription symbols are just too difficult to collect.”
“Through the process of earning points, I can also cultivate. I’ve been creating inscription symbols continuously and using many different types of materials. Not only is my inscription technique progressing quickly, but even my soul force is slowly growing. The ‘True Primal Chaos Formula’ is also improving; I can feel that I’m faintly approaching the Small Success stage of the second layer. I hadn’t actually thought that I could practice so many things in a single manner.”
“My consumption of true essence stones is really fast. In just one day I’ve already used three. This is simply burning money away.”
In the Sky Fortune Kingdom, true essence stones, according to their degree of purity, ranged between 500 gold taels to 1000 gold taels. The true essence stones that the Seven Profound Martial House handed down to its disciples were the probably the most inferior ones, at 500 gold taels.
But the more than 100 true essence stones that the Crown Prince had gifted to Lin Ming actually belonged to the lustrous top-grade pure essence stones, which had a value of 1000 gold taels each.
True essence stones were very scarce in the Sky Fortune Kingdom; it was extremely difficult to find a massive amount of them.
In turn, it was difficult to trade true essence stones for gold. Even the wealthy aristocratic families would find it difficult to afford such an expensive price; four or five true essence stones together was equal to a treasure.
Lin Ming had over 200 true essence stones on hand and he used them every day like he was eating candy. There weren’t many people in the entire Sky Fortune City that were able to do as he did.
“I’ll probably use up the true essence stones I have in two months. I’ll have to have the Crown Prince help me buy them, at worst I’ll just reimburse the money.” After becoming a guest inscription master, Lin Ming found a way to cultivate that was also able to make money.
He estimated that in a single month he would be able to make more than 200,000 gold taels without a problem. Of course, this was on the premise that there were enough rich martial artists that were seeking his services.
A normal guest inscription master would be able perform 1 or 2 tasks every day. This was because even if they could continue to do more, they would not be in an optimal condition to do so, and it would be difficult to draw a perfect inscription symbol and thus harm their reputation.
These inscription masters usually worked 20 days every month. It was a good result to make 20 or 30 thousand gold taels at the end, assuming that they did not fail.
But Lin Ming, was able to draw up inscription symbols 7 or 8 times a day. In one month he could work the entire 30 days. He was simply a freak of nature.
After he bathed himself, Lin Ming stayed in the bathtub and entered into the ethereal martial intent state. He let the true essence in his body revolve on its own as it followed its perfect path of circulation. Like this, Lin Ming sat for two hours.
Because the true essence circulation continued at high speed, the water in the tub began to heat up and give off a white fog. Soon, the entire bathroom was filled with a dense cloud of water vapor. Every time Lin Ming let loose a breath, his breath stirred a whirlpool in the air.
At midnight, Lin Ming awoke from his ethereal martial intent state, the countless tiny units in his body began to stir, and the vibrating true essence overflowed from his body like a gushing tide. The mist in the room suddenly disappeared.
However because the mist had been in the room for a long time, the entire room was dripping wet, and even Lin Ming’s clothes were soaked.
As he stood up from the bath, Lin Ming inadvertently glanced at the Purple Gold Flexible Armor that the Crown Prince had gifted to him. With a glance, Lin Ming suddenly froze. This is…
Lin Ming grabbed the Purple Gold Flexible Armor. He looked at it, startled, and felt a great shock in his heart. How did that peak Houtian master’s blood symbol that he had drawn with his own blood essence disappear!?
Today, he had been to the Inscription Association. For safety concerns, Lin Ming had worn the Purple Gold Flexible Armor. It was fine then, but after taking a bath, he discovered that the blood symbol had disappeared!
It was more accurate to say that most of the blood symbol had disappeared. There was still a tiny corner of the blood symbol that remained, but even that was already completely blurred.
This vague feeling, it was similar to ink being soaked by water.
Could it be that the mist from the bath had infiltrated into the blood symbol and ruined it? If so, then that peak Houtian master was simply too horrible and unbelievable.
Or, had the Crown Prince been cheated? Was this flexible armor itself a fake?
No, that couldn’t be right. When the Crown Prince had given him this armor, he had personally proved it with his own soul force, and had truly found that it contained the vital blood essence of a formidable master. Moreover, it was written with a supremely exquisite technique in the flexible armor, penetrating it, and had already become part of the treasure.
That blood symbol was just like an inscription symbol that was placed on a treasure. Only by using some sort of special method, for instance having an alchemist use fire to burn it away, or using the ‘Flow like Silk’ technique like Lin Ming did, could one remove it. Otherwise, it was basically impossible to separate it without completely destroying the treasure.
So what the hell had just happened?