Ancient Strengthening Technique - Chapter 1077
AST 1077 - The Earth Diamond Bear Of Early Stage Adulthood, Ancient Temple
Qing Shui managed to climbed up to the first tier of the mountain. He stood on top and gazed around at the scenery, realizing that the first tier was already quite high. He cocked his head upwards to face the overlapping skies and thought about the so-called other four continents up in the sky. Were the other four continents situated in a higher land or was the sky separated into multiple layers?
He shook his head and dispersed his thoughts. Even if someone were to tell him that imperial palaces exist in the sky, he wouldn't have a hard time believing it. At that moment, he recalled the circumstances of his journey and he realized that his life had been revolving around shouldering responsibilities and burdens. Even now, he was still shouldering heavy burdens on his own.
Aside from him, there were many who had been shouldering burdens in their lives too. However, burdens came in different sizes, so it would be subjective for each person carrying them. For Qing Shui, one type of burden may be insignificant but for other people, that burden felt extremely heavy and important. Because of that, it would be sufficient to say that everyone had their fair share of hardship in their lives.
The pressure on his body was growing but Qing Shui could not sense it for now. In any case, he continued to climb towards the higher tiers slowly. Burdens could be a life-changing mission. If one could cast off their burdens, then he or she would complete their mission, which in turn would allow them to live happier and blissful lives.
In the words of Buddhism, one would always suffer as long as one lived. They would experience the suffering of living, the suffering of aging, the suffering of sickness, the suffering of death, the suffering of parting from loved ones, the suffering of meeting what one disliked, the suffering of being unable to obtain what they wanted and the suffering arising from the five components constituting one's body and mind. Life would always be filled with sufferings. How could a cultivator cut off the roots of suffering when one would always seek what they had always wanted?
Sure, life was a whirlwind of sufferings but happiness could be found amidst the constant blossoms of suffering. As much as there were sufferings, there would be an abundance of happiness too. It would all depend on how one looked at their sufferings. However, in some cases, these sufferings could strike a blow to a person's heart and kill them without mercy.
Life would always be short, so one might as well turn their sufferings into blessings!
Perhaps Qing Shui had been asking for it all along!
He quickly shook his head again. His aura was fluctuating constantly, a delicate change to his body, which also caused the Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation to solidify slowly. He wasn't the type to be depressed as he still had many things he needed to do in this world. Life would always be filled with endless battles, battle with the heavens, battle with the nature on earth and battle with other humans.
Unconsciously, he had already reached the peak of the second tier mountain. The surrounding air was filled with a subtle fog hovering around him. He didn't exactly know why there would be a mountain as strange as this but strange places were abundant in the World of the Nine Continents, so he was more intrigued than confused.
A formless energy seemed to be guiding Qing Shui forward. His train of thoughts and spirit were beginning to change slowly and his aura was beginning to grow immensely, penetrating everywhere as the aura continued to emit from his body.
The third tier of the mountain!
Suddenly, Qing Shui felt like he had awoken from his dream and felt a sudden rush of pressure from Heaven and Earth gushing towards him like a raging sea wave. His lower body, starting from his knees, began to sink down onto the hard mountain rocks immediately, yet he was able to maintain a straight back without any sign of bending or arching.
Qing Shui stood on the rocks quietly without moving an inch of his muscles. The Nature Energy and the State of Immovable as Mountains were circulated to the maximum in an attempt to neutralize the immense pressure around him.
Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation!
The activation of his skills consumed a lot more energy than usual. This was the first time Qing Shui had extreme difficulty climbing a mountain. But because of that, he was able to reap a whole lot of benefits just from climbing a short distance and he was able to increase his power by an incredible amount as well.
Qing Shui slowly lifted his legs but once he had lifted about an inch upwards, he was being forced down again by the pressure. His legs submerged into the rocks quite intensely, causing the rocks around his legs to crack and crumble away slowly. The Yin-Yang Image in his sea of consciousness began to circulate as fast as it could.
Qing Shui shouted in a muffled voice and took a step forward. In doing so, the rocks around his step were immediately crushed into powdered pieces of fine dust.
He continued upwards but with every step he made, he would crush the rocks under his feet in greater amounts. It has been a while since he had sweated. He did have blood running from the corner of his mouth but almost never had sweat rolled down his body. At that moment, Qing Shui was drenched completely in his sweat, as if he had been exposed to a heavy rain.
As he was about to climb onto the fourth tier of the mountain, his movements had become slow as a snail. He was even slower than snails, in fact, because he required a long time before he could take a step upwards. His personality and willpower were as solid as a rock but even so, he was rendered powerless. One wouldn't necessarily succeed with sheer willpower and perseverance, because one would need a parallel amount of power to do so as well.
The Earth Diamond Bear began to growl in a low tone, as if it had sensed a hint of desolation slowly overwhelming Qing Shui's emotion. Its growls became intense, deeper yet increasing distant.
Qing Shui became uncertain for a while. However, the aura of the Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation began to fluctuate suddenly, growing intenser by the minute. He stopped in his tracks and circulated his Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation so that he could stabilize the fluctuating aura of the Earth Diamond Bear.
A boundless amount of energy began to surge inside his body. It was as warm as spring, yet it felt like he had finally lain down on a comfortable bed after countless years of endless exhaustion and fatigue. Then again, he felt like a desert drought that had been nourished suddenly with moisture. Those feelings were wonderful yet miraculous at the same time.
All of a sudden, Qing Shui felt like his body had been filled with energy to the brim. The silhouette of the Earth Diamond Bear grew bigger in an instant, which was about 20 meters in size. Moreover, the bear seemed more substantial and the color of the bear was turning more of a golden yellow.
The Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation had achieved a breakthrough...
Because it was surprisingly unexpected, Qing Shui remained still and stared into the blank space. He did think about the breakthrough of the Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation but did not expect it this soon. Thanks to the breakthrough, the feeling of difficulty in taking another step had vanished quickly and completely. Based on that alone, he knew that the Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation had grown much stronger. Without hesitation, Qing Shui delved into his sea of consciousness to analyze his skill.
Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation: Earth Diamond Bear, early stage adulthood with the ability to triple its power and spiritual energy. The consumption of the spiritual energy was subsequently decreased by half.
Once activated, energy would be depleted constantly!
Early stage adulthood - this must be the stage where one had just became an adult. Even though the description was short, Qing Shui was elated nevertheless. Moreover, the energy consumption was reduced by half, which was one of the best attribute he had ever seen....
The increase of power and spiritual energy was initially doubled but had now jumped to triple. That was quite a leap in correspondence to Qing Shui's current power. Even a 10% increase was already unbelievable, which was why he thought that the Earth Diamond Bear had become extremely powerful.
With that, the power of the bear had increased yet again. On another note, Qing Shui might be able to smelt the Sacred Jade divine Stone he had acquired but not for the moment as he wanted to wait until everything had been settled before he would go into the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal to test it. For now, he wanted to see if this mountain had anything extraordinary. For a mountain as mystical as this, Qing Shui had a feeling that there might be something in here that could be worth his time.
Because he had a feeling that something was calling out to him, he gritted his teeth and continued to push forward. Normally if they were things that called out to him, then he must have some sort of fate with those items or in other words, those items were especially suitable for a man like him.
The pressure continued to escalate like the crashing waves in the sea around him. The higher he went, the more he felt that the pressure was pushing towards the core of the mountain.
This area was filled with layers of mountains. The strongest pressure wasn't felt at the highest point but at where Qing Shui was currently at - the fifth tier. He lifted up his head and counted that there were a total of nine tiers. Upon reaching the fifth tier, Qing Shui was back to when his Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation hadn't reach a breakthrough - he found it difficult to take another step forward once again.
Buddha Form Reveal, Buddha's True Eyes!
Qing Shui had no choice but to use this hidden power to lower the pressure in his surroundings in an instant. Despite the great decrease to the pressure effect, he could still feel his footsteps a bit heavier than usual. He then began forging his way towards the peak steadily and firmly.
He was now like a normal person climbing up the mountain, treading carefully while maintaining his pace upwards. The previous mountain was an effort of one step but right now, the Nine Palace Steps was out of the question as it would be extremely hard to pull off, given the current situation. Even if he managed to pull through, the sudden increase of pressure effect would only hurt him severely or worst, kill him. His current strategy of moving forward slowly could assure a higher chance of survivability, as well as gauging the limits of his endurance against the pressure effect.
Soon, he was getting closer. Qing Shui was clinging onto the walls of the mountain rocks. Each time he climbed up the mountain, his palms would be anchored into the hard rocks, creating holes in the process...
There were numerous times when Qing Shui had thoughts about giving up entirely but the aura of the callings were beginning to increase steadily, telling him that he was getting closer to the source. It would be a shame if he gave up so quickly but his sheer will had reached the limit and his body was already numbed from the pressure, as if a voice in his mind was telling him to give up. In any case, his body could not endure any longer and was about to give out completely.
It's close, very close!
However, he could sense his conscious getting a bit blurry, so he bit the tip of his tongue with a bit of force, gushing a stream of fresh blood from the corner of his mouth. He did this countless of times throughout the climbing expedition. The bloodstains in the corner of his mouth had already dried up, leaving streaks of dried patches from his mouth down his chin.
Suddenly, Qing Shui was able to sense a faint yet lively energy circulating within his body. Even his will power seemed to be restoring to its optimal state.
Qi of Rebirth!
Qing Shui was on the verge of laughing as he recalled the times when he was utterly helpless. The Qi of Rebirth would always emerge at his worst to help him. Even though Qing Shui was trying his best this time, he felt that he wouldn't be able to make it to the peak in one piece. However, with the Qi of Rebirth activated, his confidence had finally reemerged.
The Qi of Rebirth was weak as it continued to circulate slowly throughout his body. This was a type of energy that was geared towards the power of resurrection.
The mountain peak!
As Qing Shui emerged slowly to stand on the peak of the fifth tier, he felt a sense of heroism surging within his mind, just like the feeling of climbing to the peak in his past life. At that moment, he was proud of himself - a normal occurrence for anyone standing on the highest peak of the mountain.
The peak was huge and the pressure around this altitude was increasingly stronger as well. Despite this, Qing Shui stood on the peak unfaltering, allowing the clouds to float by him without fazing his steps.
Fortunately, the mountain peak was a flat land. In front of him stood a great hall in the distance. The call originated from there, so he slowly made his way towards the the great hall.
It was a quiet place. The silence was eerily devoid of any sound, with no background noises whatsoever. There was a strong transparent pressure shrouding the whole surrounding area, yet there was no wind to be heard. All that could be heard was his own heavy footsteps as he treaded along the path towards the great hall.
The heavy footsteps echoed throughout the quiet atmosphere of the mountain peak, which could be heard even from a distance away. His target was just in front of him, so he wasted no time and activated the Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation. Behind him was a giant image of a golden Buddha, shading Qing Shui in a brilliant golden light while solemnly trailing behind him as he continued walking.
The sky was getting darker and he had just realized that he had taken more than half a day to climb the mountain towards the peak. The great hall was now 100 meters away from Qing Shui as he approached at a steady pace.
The great building turned out to be a giant palace but Qing Shui knew that this was actually a temple passed down from ancient times. As he stood at a distance, he could somehow see the smoke swirling from the burning incense and he could hear a faint chanting of the sutra as well.
All of that was a strange reaction from his senses, because he clearly knew they were fake. However, those weren't illusions and he was perfectly conscious. But as he continued to gaze upon the scenery of the grand ancient temple that was decorated magnificently like a person clad in luxurious clothes, everything seemed bright and glinting through his eyes.
The stairs leading to the temple were small, yet long enough to stretch from the temple towards the ground in front of Qing Shui.
The golden Buddha behind him seemed to have detected the power of the temple and began to appear slightly more visible and clearer. At that moment, the Buddha's eyes that had been shut in the beginning began to open on their own.
Qing Shui, on the other hand, was dumbfounded as he watched the situation unfold before his eyes. The Buddha's eyes had actually opened all by themselves...