Ancient Strengthening Technique - Chapter 1327-1328
AST 1327 –A Needle For Life, A Needle For Death, A Good Beginning, The Path of a Physician
The effects of Bloodlion Devil were waning. Pang Shitu felt his body become very heavy. Although it wasn't too much of a restriction, the consumption speed was more than twice the usual for the sake of reaching the state he was in before. This greatly pressured him. He couldn't knock him out even under the Bloodlion Devil state. It would be even more difficult for him to do that now. But he was confident that his opponent wouldn't be able to break his Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation, so he wasn't too worried either.
Instead, he was very concerned about that gigantic violet demonic beast. Luckily, that demonic beast wasn't really that formidable. Otherwise, it could really kill him.
Qing Shui actually wanted to use the bloodthirsty demonic vines very badly. Unfortunately, it didn't seem like it was time to use it yet. So he had to keep thinking up ways to reduce the opponent's speed and reactions. If he could use the bloodthirsty demonic vines to entangle him, Qing Shui was confident in trapping the Pang Shitu for a short period of time even if he was a few times more powerful than Qing Shui.
It was pity that he didn't have the opportunity to do so. After Thunderous Beast unleashed its attack earlier, the opponent had grown more wary of it. Hence, it would be very difficult for him to use the same tactic again, even if the opponent couldn't use his Bloodlion Devil again for a short period of time. Fortunately Qing Shui was in an invulnerable position at this moment.
So, it was very possible for this to remain a stalemate.
Qing Shui was definitely unwilling to keep dragging this on. The result of a draw was actually not bad, although this outcome was slightly out of everyone's expectation. However, based on the current situation, this was pretty much a tie.
Qing Shui had a variety of tactics, Pang Shitu possessed a formidable strength. However, outsiders couldn't really tell. Only a very few of them could truly see how the battle really was going and these people would much rather fight with Pang Shitu than with Qing Shui.
Qing Shui took out the Life and Death Needles.
Life and Death Needles;a needle for life and a needle for death!
Qing Shui had initially wanted this to be a tie between them too but it was nothing more than a sudden initial thought. However, he realized that the Pang Clan would still be humiliated regardless of whether Pang Shitu lost or tied in this battle. For Qing Shui, there was no way he could let himself be defeated either. Since this was the case, he might as well go all out and crush him so completely, winning this battle in a domineering manner.
Qing Shui held the Life and Death Needles in his hands, with the end that was exuding death Qi in front and then charged towards Pang Shitu.
Pang Shitu had been annoyed about the fact that he couldn't chase after the opponent despite his speed. Although he was stronger than his opponent, he couldn't touch him. He felt as if his powerful punches were all landing on cotton instead.
Pang Shitu's eyes lit up, now that Qing Shui had actually taken the initiative to strike. He had to seize the opportunity. He definitely couldn't afford to let Qing Shui escape again.
'He's closing in!'
Pang Shitu watched as Qing Shui drew closer and closer, having no intention to evade. He wasn't really concerned about a person who couldn't even break his Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation. The only thing he had to do now, was to knock his opponent down in one strike.
Qing Shui knew the intention of his opponent. So just when he was closing in to Pang Shitu, he vanished.
Nine Palace Steps, Vanish!
It was a different approach than 'Nine Palace Steps, Void' technique, but both of them achieved the same outcome. However, with this, he vanished along with his aura and everything else. Nine Palace Steps, Void would still leave behind a trail of afterimage instead. Hence, the 'Nine Palace Steps, Vanish' technique was a level higher than it. The moment he vanished, Pang Shitu's heart jolted. But then he felt assured when he remembered about his Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation. He concentrated and put his guard up, as he prepared to give Qing Shui a fatal strike at any moment.
Qing Shui, who had vanished, reappeared instantly beside Pang Shitu. He directly plunged the Life and Death Needles towards Pang Shitu. They penetrated through his powerful-looking Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation as if it was non-existent in the first place.
At the same time, the energy within Pang Shitu's body suddenly erupted. Just when he was prepared to give Qing Shui a fatal strike, Qing Shui's divine force abruptly erupted and it was injected into his opponent's brain through the Life and Death Needles.
Death Qi seeped into Pang Shitu's brain. Although only a little, it still rendered Pang Shitu into a half dead state within an instant. Even though Pang Shitu's final strike was greatly reduced, it still hit Qing Shui. It didn't land on any vital parts on him, but it still once again heavily injured Qing Shui.
Pang Shitu didn't die from the fall but instead he woke up and found his entire body lacking in strength. He was freezing, just like an ordinary person. At this very moment, he felt extremely dispirited. He just felt deeply unmotivated and powerless, like a person who had just sustained a severe injury or a person who had just recovered from a severe illness. It had been so many years since he last felt this way. At this very moment, he realized just how fragile life was.
"I've lost!" Pang Shitu removed the Demonic Beast Armor Manifestation and exclaimed towards Qing Shui who was standing in front of him.
Qing Shui didn't kill Pang Shitu because he realized that the Life and Death Needles had left a trail of death Qi in his body that would continuously consume him. Without Qing Shui's help, he would only last roughly a decade at most or die inevitably in one and half years. Not only that, it would also be very unlikely for his strength to improve.
There wasn't really any benefit in killing Pang Shitu right now. So he spared his life, in fear of getting the innocents involved. That way by the time he died, they wouldn't blame Qing Shui. If he could live for more than decade, just the Pang Clan alone wouldn't be able to do anything.
"Go then, all of you. I hope you all will abide by the agreement made between us," Qing Shui said while wiping away the trail of blood at the corner of his lips.
"Rest assured, the Pang Clan will definitely keep our word," Pang Shitu said with a smile, even though it was an extremely bitter smile.
From the beginning, Pang Shitu had already had a feeling that he would definitely lose today. Even if it wasn't Qing Shui, some other clans would also defeat him. When he thought about this, he really wanted to vomit blood. Pang De was really brainless. He even felt like killing him now. He had only made the bet after feeling the undulation in the surroundings, for the sake of avoiding Qing Shui holding a grudge on Pang Clan. Pang Shitu had lived for so many years, naturally he could tell that this young man would someday soar into the heavens like a mighty dragon. Even at this point of time, he wasn't someone the Pang Clan could afford to offend.
This was the ability of a formidable physician.
"Brother, are you alright?" Soulsearch came up to him and asked worriedly.
"Brother, have you forgotten the fact that I am a physician?" Qing Shui laughed. This could hardly amount to anything.
"Brother, go upstairs and tend to your wounds. Don't delay," Li Ji also urged Qing Shui.
Qing Shui turned around and nodded at Old Man Puyang and the rest before he went back into Imperial Cuisine Hall.
Not long after that, Old Master Li and Li Yan also came to see Qing Shui too. They were there just now too. Qing Shui was a little overwhelmed by emotions when he saw Li Yan. There was a trace of sentiment from his previous world imprinted on his mind that he just couldn't wipe off.
In his previous world, she could be considered a beauty. Although not the most beautiful in Qing Shui's eyes, he definitely liked this type of woman the most. The ladies he met after coming to this world like Shi Qingzhuang, Canghai Mingyue, Di Chen and Yiye Jiange possessed beauty that was unattainable even through makeup and cosmetics in his previous world. There was still a great disparity between their beauty and photos that had been filtered and photoshopped. Even with these women in his possession, he still couldn't wipe away his fondness when he saw this girl who greatly resembled the girl he had adored in his previous life.
She had a pair of huge and very bright eyes that were slightly moist. She had an amazing voice too, just like her. Qing Shui was aware that this was not the same girl from his previous world, just like that man back in the five continents who looked just like big brother. But even if he wasn't him, Qing Shui still bestowed upon him an opportunity that was enough to change the rest of his life.
Now that he had met this girl from Li Clan, he thought he could very quickly forget about this girl. After all, she wasn't her. She only looked like her. He didn't adore that girl from his previous world solely due to her appearance but as a person and the type of feeling that she gave off.
"Sir Qing, are you alright?"Li Yan wasn't aware of the thoughts running through Qing Shui's mind. She was only asking in a slightly worried tone. By the time she arrived, Qing Shui had already finished tending to his wounds, cleaned up and changed his clothes. He didn't even lie down.
"Miss Yan'er, I am a physician. What could this minor injury possibly mean? Thank you for checking on me."
At this very moment, Qing Shui saw a very familiar expression on her face and suddenly recalled the scene where she bent over to help him tie his shoelace back in his previous world. During that moment, he had wanted to embrace her so badly but he couldn't do that. He indeed had too many regrets in his previous life.
Li Yan was taken aback when he saw Qing Shui. The very complicated expression on his face flustered her and caused her to avert her gaze from him. Qing Shui smiled and asked her to take a seat. Old Master Li was sitting on the couch and chatting with Soulsearch and the rest.
The fifth floor was a private area that was only accessible with permission.
"You're welcome. I should be the one thanking you," Li Yan regained her composure as she gently chuckled.
"You bear strong resemblance to a friend of mine," Qing Shui commented with a smile.
"What friend?" Li Yan was intrigued.
"A very close friend."
"Who looks very much like me? Can I meet her then?" Li Yan seemed to be very curious about it.
"I might never be able to find her again. She has vanished from my world." Qing Shui didn't know how to feel when he said that.
"I'm so sorry!"
"It's fine. I'm already used to it. It's been a few decades already." Qing Shui pondered for a moment. He still couldn't forget about her even though a few decades had passed. He wondered if Li Yan had misunderstood his words. To be honest, it was more like he had vanished from her world.
"Oh, then that means she is way older than me," Li Yan chuckled.
Qing Shui shook his head. In his heart, that girl was forever frozen at that age because his memory had stopped at that point in time. He didn't tell her that but instead, he changed the subject and talked to Li Yan about something else.
For this girl, Qing Shui would no longer deliberately pursue her. If she was really that girl from his previous life, then he would definitely not let her slip away again. It was a pity that the one standing before him merely resembled her in appearance only.
But sometimes, humans were visual creatures. Even though he clearly knew she wasn't the same girl, his heart still subconsciously saw her as a substitute and both of them were gradually overlapping. He wasn't sure if this could be considered a form of substitution. Was it really possible to completely replace a person?
After a few interactions, both of them had pretty much gotten used to each other. Their conversation flowed as how it would be with the girl-next-door and they were also very comfortable conversing with each other.
The smile on Old Master Li's face broadened when he saw Qing Shui was having a pleasant chat with Li Yan. However, he was aware that this young Miraculous Doctor wasn't an ordinary person. Although his girl was beautiful, the Li Clan's background was much too inferior compared to Qing Shui. If his little girl was from the main branch of Li Clan, then perhaps there might still be some hope.
In just a few days, Qing Shui had treated many patients. They were mainly people with quite a profound clan background. There was also a volunteer medical consultation once a week at the Imperial Cuisine Hall. His reputation as a Miraculous Physician was spread around, not only that, he was also known as the benevolent physician.
Thus, countless people were attracted to this place due to its reputation…
Before he realized it, Qing Shui found himself in a very profound position. The members of Imperial Cuisine Hall's fourth floor had increased very significantly compared to before. Most of them were clans that were on par with Li Clan's main branch and Sikong Clan and of course, the Puyang Clan, Dugu Clan and some others. Qing Shui had already walked into their field of view.
That little girl from Puyang Clan was finally cured today. Old Man Puyang happily looked at Qing Shui. "When you have children, shall we engage them to each other?"
Qing Shui was taken aback before he smiled. "I am very fond of your little girl, Zhengming. If you are willing to, I have no objection either. I'm just worried that if the two of them can't get along well when they grow up, they might blame us."
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AST 1328 –Infant Betrothal, What is the Strength of False God Realm? Returning Home
"There's no harm doing that. If they are really unwilling and unable to get along well with each other in the future, then we can forget about it, what do you think? Little lass has too tough of a life but she has great aptitude for cultivation. When I see you, Sir Qing, I think you are the right person. I just wish for Zhengming for a good destiny in the future," Old Man Puyang said with a smile.
Speaking up to this point, he didn't expect the old man to still be this insistent. He was really searching to settle his younger one for a good future and thought that Qing Shui was a good choice. But the little lass was to be betrothed to his son instead. Although he could sort of foresee how his son would turn out in the future, this old man really had a pair of sharp eyes.
"If that's the case, let's settle it first for now, Old Master. Sorry that little lass had to go through this." Qing Shui smiled.
"Not at all. It's an honor for our Puyang Clan," Old Man Puyang said happily.
A wise old man he was indeed. Qing Shui didn't even know what to feel about it. The old man naturally knew that Qing Shui would attain great achievements in the future and could probably attain the False God realm and that his offsprings would also attain decent achievements. Qing Shui wondered if there were any False God cultivators among the Puyang Clan. He reckoned that it probably wasn't that easy for him to also attain strength akin to the Puyang Clan either.
Qing Shui took out quite a lot of good stuff and helped little lass to cleanse her impurities. This little lass would be his future daughter-in-law. He hoped Long'er would get along well with her in the future.
"Old Master, how strong is an Early False God cultivator?" Qing Shui questioned out of curiosity. It was just him and Old Man Puyang in the room anyway.
Little lass had gone off to play with Li Ji.
"A million sun!" Old Man Puyang's answer was clear-cut.
Qing Shui felt dizzy when he heard that number. It was simply too terrifying. No wonder why even when he saw the False God realm, it was so out of reach like the sun in sky. He could see it but the time required to reach there was too terrifying.
A million sun of strength was required as an Early False God cultivator. It was the supreme being in the Dancing Phoenix Continent as well as in the Soaring Dragon Continent and Haohan Continent. Qing Shui was in a daze for a long moment before he snapped back to reality and saw the old man looking at him with a smile.
"My mind wandered, that's embarrassing." Qing Shui smiled back in embarrassment.
"Oh no, Qing Shui. You will definitely reach the realm of the False God in the future," Old Man Puyang said with a smile. The tone of his voice was very certain.
"Oh? You seem to be very sure of it. I don't even really believe that myself. Can Old Master tell me the reason?" Qing Shui really wanted to hear Old Man Puyang's reason.
"Intuition. I can't really put it into words."
Old Man Puyang had instantly given Qing Shui an answer that rendered him speechless. It was known that a woman's intuition was scary but it seemed like this answer wasn't accurate as a man's intuition could be very scary too.
"Do any False God cultivators exist in Yehuang Country?"
Old Man Puyang was a supreme figure in the Yehuang Country. Even Qing Shui couldn't tell his strength, he could only feel that it was deep and immeasurable.
"Yes but there are too few of them. There are also some lingering around the gates of the False God realm, unable to breakthrough." Old Man Puyang smiled at Qing Shui.
"How strong is a Peak Martial Emperor?" Qing Shui seemed to have suddenly realized this question.
"300,000 sun, some are 500,000 sun. Some stopped growing after attaining 300,000 sun. Some are unable to advance after attaining 500,000 sun. Unless they could breakthrough to the False God realm, they could only stick around there. No one can attain more than 500,000 sun before reaching the False God realm."
"Thank you, Old Master. This has really broadened my horizons all of a sudden. It's been a few days since I arrived, I'm wondering if Yehuang Country is governed by dynasties?"
"Yehuang Country is governed by aristocrat clans. The Dancing Phoenix Continent is also mainly governed by aristocrat clans and there's aristocrat clan alliance. The aristocrat clans in Dancing Phoenix Continents are most powerful. Everything revolves around clans. Supreme aristocratic clans aren't much different than sects and dynasties," Old Man Puyang laughed.
Qing Shui stopped questioning Old Man Puyang about strengths. By now, he already had a rough idea of the Yehuang Country's strength. There were False God cultivators but only a very few. There were probably more in the continent’s capital. Yehuang Country had a few but there were some with 300,000 sun of strength. Perhaps there were also some with 500,000 sun of strength but only a handful.
The moment one broke through to False God realm, his strength would increase by a few folds. The disparity between a cultivator of 300,000 sun and a million sun of strength who attained this realm was simply indescribable. A 300,000 sun wouldn't be able to lay a finger on a million sun. However, a cultivator of a million sun of strength could easily crush a cultivator of 300,000 or 500,000 sun of strength like an ant. This was the difference between them.
In just a flash, it had been more than twenty days since Qing Shui arrived at the Dancing Phoenix Continent. He had already gotten on the right track here. Little did he expect the arts of healing and food to be able to blend into the Yehuang Country so soon. However, the mysterious Yehuang Clan had never come into contact with him. With Yehuang Guwu's words, Qing Shui naturally would never get involved with the Yehuang Clan on his own accord.
There were beings of False God realm in the Yehuang Country. So it went without saying that there were also False God beings among the Yehuang Clan. To Qing Shui, the Yehuang Clan was like a great tyrant. To be able to become the supreme aristocratic clan in the Yehuang Country, the Yehuang Clan most definitely relied on their strength to control the Yehuang Country. After all, in the world of cultivators, fists do the talking.
Even though Puyang Clan and Dugu Clan appeared to be front ranking supreme aristocratic clans like the Yehuang Clan in the Yehuang Country on the surface, there was quite a big difference between them, much like the dynasties among the Western Oxhe Continent.
Qing Shui wanted to ask if there were any False God cultivators among the Puyang Clan but he didn't. There were very few cultivators of False God grade in Yehuang Country but he had no idea just to what extent. But now that he knew that there were only a few, it didn't matter if they existed among the Puyang Clan. He didn't want to rely on anyone.
The main point right now was Qing Shui shouldn't get too close to Yehuang Clan. He had a feeling that he would get involved with the Yehuang Clan sooner or later. And the problem with getting involved with them was what he had promised Yehuang Guwu.
"Qing Shui, can you promise me one thing?"
"Don't see any patients from Yehuang Clan."
"I promise you!"
When he thought about all that, Qing Shui shook his head to get rid of these question in his head. He left behind enough Jade Bay Leaves, Longevity Fish and also some other things, because he was returning to the five continents to stay home a few days.
The Five Elements divine Flag that had been set in every location could be used once every month but that didn't mean every thirty days. Since it was already late in the month, as long as it was last third of the month and approaching to the next month, it could be used again at every location.
He had Soulsearch keep an eye out for powerful physicians and recruit any suitable ones into Imperial Cuisine Hall but on the condition that they must possess great potential. Soulsearch naturally understood that any who wished to join and have a share of the Imperial Cuisine Hall must not be inferior to himself.
This was the second time he returned to the Central Continent. Although he wasn't as excited as he was last time, he was still a little excited. The thing that he didn't even dare to dream of in the past had now became a reality. It was easy when he managed to do it. Without the Five Elements divine Flag, it felt like it was more difficult than ascending the heavens.
As soon as Qing Shui returned to the Qing Clan, the first people he saw were Wenren Wu-shuang, Mu Qing and Yu He.
They had returned.
The first things Qing Shui saw as soon as he entered his residence were them. They were still as movingly beautiful as they had always been. Wenren Wu-shuang was fully dressed in a snowy white dress along with Yu He. Except that Yu He was bustier with a fuller figure. She possessed a Hundred Flowers Body that was lovelier than even the flowers. Mu Qing was wearing a golden phoenix dress with pleated skirt that showed off her exquisite figure. The three ladies were taken aback when they saw Qing Shui, before a pleasantly surprised expression emerged on their faces.
Qing Shui instantaneously flashed in between them and then embraced Wenren Wu-shuang with one arm and Mu Qing with the other arm. But he very quickly let them go to embrace Yu He.
The relationship between him and Yu He was quite a bumpy one. He had already had feelings for her back in the Hundred Miles City. But back then they were confused and ended up dragging it on for more than twenty years. He had also known Wenren Wu-shuang in the Hundred Miles City. She was the most powerful cultivator he had met in the beginning back then, as a Xiantian cultivator.
Yu He's heart squeezed when she saw Qing Shui embracing Wenren Wu-shuang and Muqing but it wasn't enough to be considered a heartache. But the moment he held her, all those feelings vanished.
In fact, they had already indistinctly acknowledged the relationship between them last time. Qing Shui had gotten over it and decided not to let her leave again.
Soon enough, the other people from the Qing Clan appeared too. The few little fellows came running out. It had been just almost one month since the last time Qing Shui returned. With this, they were all convinced that Qing Shui could indeed return once a month.
After greeting his family, Qing Shui took out Jade Steamed Buns and some other food. They had all been reheated in the Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal, as gifts for these little children. Other than that, he helped the rest to nurture their constitution with his Life and Death Needles along with the Spring of Life.
He had enough Spring of Life and also some medicinal pills like Spiritual Drops. He had also obtained some 10,000 year spiritual limestone back when he was in the Wester Oxhe Continent. He had pretty much gotten quite a number of the things he couldn't obtain in the five continents over at the Western Oxhe Continent and Dancing Phoenix Continent.
Especially in the Dancing Phoenix Continent, Soulsearch had a decent collection of medicinal herbs because the requirements of 'customers' limited to Imperial Cuisine Hall's fourth floor wasn't only about money but also more about medicinal herbs and personal favors.
Soulsearch had not lacked money since long ago. In fact, it was most difficult to bargain with a powerful cultivator using only money.
Deep cleansing of impurities and constitution nurturing were necessary for improving innate talents and establishing foundation. Even people like Qing Yi and Qing Luo, who had been restricted by the Xiantian Golden Pellet, were able to break free from its restrictive effects.
This was a new discovery made this time and also the effects of the Life and Death Needles. But of course, all of this was also closely connected to the Spring of Life.
The other thing that made Qing Shui happy was the Sky Penetrating Grass.
The Sky Penetrating Grass in Realm of the Violet Jade Immortal could be used now. He could also concoct more powerful Ren Meridian Strengthening Pellets, Du Meridian Strengthening Pellets and Golden Snake Pellets now compared to before. Through his art of healing, he could help them to better absorb them.
The Ren Meridian Strengthening Pellets could also clear another very important acupoint in a human body, the Tiantu Acupoint.
Qing Shui spent the whole day away helping people of the Qing Clan to raise their strength and performing alchemy.
During dinner time, Qing Shui who was holding Qing Long smiled at Zhu Qing. "I have arranged a marriage for Long'er over at the Dancing Phoenix Continent for now. The other party is from a very powerful clan. But if the little two fellows don't get along with each other in the future, we won't force them either."
"Brother Shui, isn't that a bit too early! I haven't even married yet!" Qing Bei exclaimed in shock.
"Our Little Bei has very high standards. But I wouldn't recommend you all to get married so early either because I might be bringing you all to somewhere more vast in the future. By then, you will meet many gorgeous ladies. So, you all better reconsider any decisions carefully. Don't go feeling jealous about the others by then," Qing Shui chuckled.
"Brat, what nonsense are you spouting?" Qing Yi was equally amused.
Zhu Qing happily smiled and let Qing Shui make the decision. Long'er was still young anyway. When that time came, both of them could try to get along with each other first. Perhaps it might even turn out well.
The third generation of the Qing Clan wasn't that young anymore, though they were still very young in age as cultivators. Besides, their strength had been increasing steadily at a fast pace, at least according to the standards of the five continents. Compared to other people in general, they could still be considered to improve at a decent speed but most importantly, their foundations were well established.
Qing Shui had put in a lot of effort when it came to helping them to establish foundation. Since they were restricted by their innate talents back then, he figured he might as well let them establish their foundation better as practise makes perfect, just like his Basic Sword Techniques. In fact, Qing Shui had been making preparations, in hopes that he could one day transform them through his medicinal pill and art of healing.
Now, the opportunity had come. He had the Life and Death Needles, Spring of Life and some medicinal pills. This time, they would soar for sure as their innate talents would be improved by leaps and bounds. This was a great breakthrough for the Qing Clan. If the Qing Clan's strength would attain the State Master level, then their lifespan would be increased significantly. That way there would still be a chance, in addition to the emergence of Qing Clan's fourth generation.
The hope actually still lay in the fourth generation because that would basically become a reality as long as someone among the third generation could attain great achievements.