Library of Heaven is Path
1305 He’s Bathing!
"Make a breakthrough while he's at it?"
"Is it possible to make a breakthrough as and when you like?"
"What can he possibly do in just ten breaths? It won't even be sufficient for a short toilet break!"
Upon hearing Zhang Xuan's words, a huge commotion broke out beneath the stage.
The various elders in the sky also looked at one another in confusion, uncomprehending of what the young man was up to.
A typical cultivator would have to find an isolated chamber, prepare all kinds of cultivation resources, and condition his body for many days before attempting for a breakthrough, and yet, this fellow actually asked for a ten breaths break from the battle in order to make a breakthrough...
Do you think that making a breakthrough is as easy as breathing, able to do it as and when you like?
"Fine, I'll give you ten seconds then. Let's see if you have the ability to make a breakthrough within this period of time!" Zhang Yunfeng was startled for a moment before he nearly burst out laughing.
He had seen plenty of eccentric people in his life, but the young man before him sure was one-of-a-kind!
To ask for a ten breaths break in the midst of a battle in order to make a breakthrough... Can you come up with something any more ridiculous than that?
And even if you did manage to achieve a breakthrough, you would only be at Half-Leaving Aperture realm. Do you think that you would be a match for me like that?
Fine, I'll give you the time that you desire so much then! Let's see what you can do with it!
"Great." Zhang Xuan nodded. Flicking his wrist, he took out the Wintry Spirit Essence, uncorked the bottle, and swallowed it whole.
"That isn't for drinking!" At the bottom of the dueling ring, Chen Leyao saw that sight and nearly keeled over.
The Wintry Spirit Essence was a cold attribute spirit essence capable of freezing one's very blood and bones. Even the members of the Glacier Plain Court would just dab a little bit of it on their fingers and slowly absorb it over a very long period of time each time they cultivated. That bottle of Wintry Spirit Essence was intended for several years of use, and yet... he actually swallowed it whole!
While it was true that the Wintry Spirit Essence was rich in spiritual energy, it was simply too cold. Swallowing it directly was worse than ingesting lethal poison directly!
Putting aside a Primordial Spirit realm cultivator like you, even Grand Dominion realm experts would die from having their innards freezing over!
Just what in the world are you doing?
It was in view that the young man was her benefactor and the teacher of their young court chief that Chen Leyao gave him a bottle of Wintry Spirit Essence. If he were to die because of that... there was no way she would be able to escape responsibility!
Just as Chen Leyao was scared out of her wits, she saw that not only did the young man on the stage not turn into a sculpture of ice, the aura he emanated was even growing stronger by the moment. It felt almost as if a dam which had accumulated several decades worth of water was beginning to shatter, ready to let loose a furious flood upon the world.
Following which, with a resounding buzz, the young man successfully overcame the bottleneck of Primordial Spirit realm pinnacle and reached Half-Leaving Aperture realm.
Despite so, the advancement in his cultivation didn't stop just there. It continued surging forward furiously.
Two breaths later, he reached Quasi Leaving Aperture realm.
"This…" Chen Leyao's face paled, and her throat turned dry. Her eyes were bulging so much that it seemed as if they would plop out to the ground anytime soon.
She was certain that the young man would be frozen to death by the cold energy of the Wintry Spirit Essence, but... not only was he fine, he even managed to swiftly assimilate the spirit essence into his body and advance his cultivation swiftly.
Just what kind of constitution did he have? That was really frightening!
Amidst her shock, Zhang Xuan's advancement in cultivation finally slowed to a halt.
It seemed like he had finished devouring all of the spiritual energy contained within the Wintry Spirit Essence.
"To achieve a breakthrough of two cultivation stages within three breaths?"
"Isn't this a little too fast?"
Everyone stared at the sight before them in a daze.
In the sky, Elder Liu and the others also nearly plummeted to the ground from shock.
They thought that the young man asking for a break of ten breaths was just a joke, but in just three breaths, he had already managed to advance his cultivation by two cultivation stages. And furthermore, from the looks of it, if not for the insufficient spiritual energy from the Wintry Spirit Essence, he could have very well pushed for even higher realms.
Zhang Yunfeng was also dumbfounded by how Zhang Xuan actually succeeded in achieving a breakthrough so swiftly, and a deep frown emerged on his forehead. But a short moment later, the frown gave way to a cold chuckle, "You are merely at Quasi Leaving Aperture realm. Even if you did succeed in achieving a breakthrough, you still won't be able to defeat me with such strength."
Even with two consecutive breakthroughs, that fellow would only be a mere Quasi Leaving Aperture realm. There was still a huge gap between the other party and a true Grand Dominion realm expert like him!
All of a sudden, the deep rumbling of thunder abruptly bellowed in the sky above, and it took only a short moment for the clear skies to be covered in darkness.
Raising his head anxiously, Zhang Yunfeng saw ominous clouds looming above the square.
"He... can't be thinking of challenging the lightning ordeal here, could he?" Zhang Yunfeng's body shuddered involuntarily upon that realization.
To dare to draw out the lightning ordeal a moment right after you have reached Quasi Leaving Aperture realm... Do you know how frightening the lightning ordeal is?
Primordial Spirits were of the yin attribute, and they needed to be nourished by the lightning ordeal before they could make the transformation into the yang attribute. Only then would they be able to travel freely without being limited by their bodies.
However, lightning was the natural nemesis to all beings of the yin attribute. Even Zhang Yunfeng had to reinforce his cultivation for more than half a year before daring to challenge the lightning ordeal... but even so, he still sustained grave injuries from it, nearly crippling himself for good. He had to rest for three whole months before he was able to recover back to full health.
It was one thing for that fellow to rush his breakthroughs, but to actually draw in the lightning ordeal on top of that...
Are you really that intent to die?
"That's too reckless!" Zhao Xingmo exclaimed in horror.
To be honest, it was no big deal for Zhang Xuan to lose the duel. After all, Zhang Yunfeng was ranked higher than him, so it wouldn't affect his status and prestige as a student of the Elite Division. There was really no need to take the risk and rush for a breakthrough at all!
This was really a foolish action!
Perhaps noticing Zhao Xingmo's worry, Zhang Jiuxiao consoled, "Don't worry, Zhang shi will be fine!"
Zhao Xingmo might not be aware of how monstrous Zhang Xuan was, but he had experienced it firsthand.
So many times, he had worked hard to reinforce his cultivation so as to push for a breakthrough in hopes to surpassing Zhang Xuan, but in the end, the latter would just casually say "I have accumulated enough" and easily achieve breakthrough after breakthrough, steadily widening the gap between the both of them...
After all the traumas he had been through, there was no longer anything Zhang Xuan could do that would surprise him anymore.
Admittedly, the situation occurring before him was inconceivable to him too. But considering that it was Zhang Xuan who stood at the eye of the storm, everything didn't seem as unbelievable anymore.
After all, that young man was a Celestial Master Teacher like Kong shi. How could an existence like that be gauged using the common sense of ordinary men?
"Fine? How could he be fine? Do you know that the very first Leaving Aperture Ordeal is the most dangerous to a cultivator? There are countless geniuses in history who had died because of it... Just look at the dense congregation of storm clouds in the sky! I know that he's a person of great capability, but it takes only a moment of complacency to make an irreversible mistake!" Zhao Xingmo bellowed anxiously.
"Besides, even if he were to survive the lightning ordeal, he would surely suffer grievous injuries too. Given so, how is he going to continue fighting against Zhang Yunfeng?"
Considering how powerful the Leaving Aperture Ordeal was, it was inevitable that one would suffer great damage to one's Primordial Spirit... And considering how he was already outmatched when fighting at his full strength, how could he possibly be a match for a Grand Dominion realm expert when he was in a severely wounded state?
Even without looking at the outcome, it was obvious what the conclusion of the duel would be!
"This…" This time, even Zhang Jiuxiao was stumped.
He had deep confidence in Zhang Xuan, but given how disadvantageous the circumstances were to the latter, even he couldn't help but waver at this point in time.
"My heavens, has Zhang Xuan gone mad? Are my eyes playing tricks on me, or is Zhang shi trying to draw his Primordial Spirit out from his body?"
All of a sudden, a loud exclamation echoed through the square. Alarmed, Zhang Jiuxiao turned his head toward the sky and saw that Zhang Xuan had drawn his Primordial Spirit out of his glabella, and in this very moment, his Primordial Spirit was charging right into the congregation of storm clouds.
"Is Zhang shi intending to face the Leaving Aperture Ordeal with his Primordial Spirit? But that would only put him in greater danger!" Zhang Jiuxiao widened his eyes in shock.
Considering that the Primordial Spirit was weak against lightning, a cultivator would stand a better chance at surviving the Leaving Aperture Ordeal if he were to face the lightning tribulation with his Primordial Spirit housed within his body. This way, the body would at least help to block out a fair bit of the lightning.
Back at the Marshlands of the Northern Meadows, he had seen the deep agony that Hall Master Xing was put through from facing the lightning tribulation directly with his Primordial Spirit.
Zhang Xuan was present then as well, so he should be aware of the dangers of his actions. Why was he still taking such a risk then?
While Zhang Jiuxiao was wondering if Zhang Xuan had gone bonkers, the latter's Primordial Spirit had already charged right into the storm clouds. Countless streaks of lightning flashed within the clouds, fully displaying the treacherous environment within.
Under the relentless lightning strike, Zhang Xuan's Primordial Spirit began moving in a bizarre fashion, as if the lightning strike had caused him to lose control of himself.
"The Leaving Aperture Ordeal is the first hurdle that Saint realm experts would face. The violent energy harnessed within the lightning tribulation is simply too great such that most Primordial Spirits would end up succumbing it, resulting in dissipation. Yet, that fellow actually dashed right in complete unprepared... He really shouldn't have done that. Having gotten into the Elite Division, he had such a bright future lying before him, but now…"
"Recklessness is really the bane for all cultivators. Look at how he's convulsing uncontrollably!"
"This is his very first lightning tribulation, so his Primordial Spirit wouldn't have the slightest resistance to lightning at all. Even if his Primordial Spirit doesn't dissipate from this, it's likely that his sanity would be wiped away by the violent force of the lightning ordeal... That fellow is really too hasty for success... Wait a moment, are you sure he's convulsing? Why doesn't it seem that way to me?"
Long sighs of lamentation sounded one after another from the crowd, but all of a sudden, the sudden exclamation left the entire crowd stunned for a moment.
"You're right! His Primordial Spirit isn't convulsing. It's more like... more like…"
Half a breath later, another master teacher finished the sentence with a shrill voice, "... More like he's bathing!"
Bewildered by that perplexing remark, everyone quickly turned their gazes over, and indeed, there was something really amiss with the situation.
The Primordial Spirit amidst the lightning clouds was moving around, but it wasn't a spasmodic movement. Rather, if they really had to describe it, it would be more of a rhythmic scrubbing movement, as if he was trying to spread the lightning equally throughout his body.
As if he was trying to scrub it into the depths of his Primordial Spirit.
"Primordial Spirits are naturally averse to lightning, but not only is he unfrightened, he's even heartily bathing in it…"
"Are my eyes playing tricks on me? How could something like this possibly happen?"
Madness. This was truly madness.
Three breaths to push from Primordial Spirit pinnacle to Quasi Leaving Aperture realm, and even challenging the lightning tribulation face on straight afterward...
Their minds could still accept it if Zhang Xuan managed to survive the Leaving Aperture Ordeal by a close shot, but to be bathing so joyfully amidst it...
No words could even begin to describe the emotions they were feeling at this very instant.
"T-this…" Elder Liu gulped down a mouthful of saliva as his eyelids twitched uncontrollably.
As an elder of the Sanctum of Sages, he had seen plenty of outstanding geniuses over the past several hundred years, such as the current head of the Zhang Clan, the little princess of the Luo Clan... They were all the most outstanding figures of the Master Teacher Continent, the stars that shone the brightest in the night sky.
But... not even they dared to play with the Leaving Aperture Ordeal like that!
Elder Liu clawed at his hair frenziedly, tearing out huge patches of it.
"He…" Zhang Yunfeng had frozen in shock from what he was seeing.
He thought that it was utter foolishness of the young man to bring forth the lightning tribulation so casually, and that he was simply courting death. Yet, as if a resilient cockroach, the lightning ordeal didn't seem to faze him in the least. On the contrary, he was even having plenty of fun 'bathing'!
"Ten breaths are up!" This daze continued for quite a while before Zhang Yunfeng suddenly remembered the situation he was in and bellowed loudly.
The Primordial Spirit in the sky seemed to have heard his voice and immediately stopped his 'scrubbing'. He opened his mouth wide and devoured the entire sky of lightning through his mouth before dashing right back into his body.
In the next moment, Zhang Xuan opened his eyes and looked at Zhang Yunfeng apologetically.
"Pardon me. It was my first time experiencing the lightning tribulation, and I had a little too much fun that I accidentally took another additional breath. To make up to you, why don't I give you a three moves advantage?"