Library of Heaven is Path
1041 Secret Ar
Chapter 1041: Secret Art
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
In Zhang Xuan's opinion, the moment that something happened to one of the expedition members while walking in the Spatial Formation, the group should have immediately realized that something was amiss. From that, it shouldn't be too difficult for them to deduce that they had been assaulted by demonic tunes. Through some trial and error, no matter how foolish they were, two to three days should have been more than sufficient for them to get to the stone tablet.
Yet, who would have thought that the old principal would actually take more than half a month to get here?
Weren't they a little too dimwitted to take that long?
Perhaps, it was due to the limitations of their cultivation. After all, even Principal Wo Tianqiong and the others were stuck in a trance for quite some time themselves, unaware of the changes in their surroundings.
After some contemplation, Zhang Xuan came up with a possible explanation.
Most of the expedition members that the old principal had brought along were the elders of the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy, Saint 1-dan cultivators. Even the strongest of them all would only have been at Spiritual Perception realm.
So, it was likely that they had been in the same position as Wo Tianqiong and the other combat masters. As soon as they arrived, they were already put into a trance, making them unaware of their surroundings or even the state that they were in as well.
In such a situation, it would have been a huge blessing if they knew that they should consume a pill to replenish their energy, let alone uncovering the secrets of the Unbounded World.
But since the old principal has left his words here, it goes to show that he has managed to walk out of this area alive, Zhang Xuan noted.
This was the first trace of the old principal that they had encountered so far after all of the dangers they had been through, and with this, they could be entirely certain that they were on the right path.
It is written on the stone tablet that anyone who manages to reach this point within three days will be bestowed with a secret art. Let's see what kind of secret art I will get.
Knowing that it was more important to focus on what was ahead of him at this moment, Zhang Xuan turned his attention back to the stone tablet.
The stone tablet was made out of some kind of particularly heavy material, planting it firmly in place.
Circling around the stone tablet, he swiftly noticed a groove on it that one could place one's palm in. It felt as if some kind of unique power would come to life just by coming into contact with it.
To be careful, Zhang Xuan closely examined the stone tablet, and only after verifying that there were no dangers regarding it did he finally heave a sigh of relief. Nevertheless, he still prepared several defensive measures before finally reaching out to place his palm on the groove.
It couldn't be helped. They hadn't gotten a grasp on the identity or personality of the master of the ancient domain yet, so it was still best to remain on guard.
As soon as his palm came into contact with the groove, a brilliant flash of light burst into the air, and the seemingly omnipresent demonic tune abruptly came to a halt.
Seeing this sight, Zhang Xuan heaved a sigh of relief.
With the halting of the demonic tune, the other members would finally be free from the effects of the demonic tunes, and the depletion of their zhenqi and stamina should have come to a stop, putting them out of harm's way.
The stone tablet suddenly jolted once more, and as if some kind of unique mechanism or formation had come to life, a loud 'hu!' sounded. Following which, a figure came into appearance.
The figure was an elder with white hair and a beard. Despite being a mere fragmented soul, he emanated a sharp aura that exerted immense pressure upon one's psyche.
Wariness immediately surfaced in Zhang Xuan's eyes as he took a step back. Powerful…
The elder was only a mere fragmented soul at the moment, on the verge of flickering out of existence after the passing of innumerable years. However, if the old elder were to make a move against him at this moment, there would still be nothing Zhang Xuan could do about it.
Even as a fragmented soul, the elder wielded absolute power that Zhang Xuan could never hope to rival in his current state. There was no doubt that the elder had at least been a Saint 5-dan expert back when he was still alive.
Otherwise, there was no way the other party could have left him feeling so apprehensive.
"There's no need to tense up, I mean you no harm. Allow me to introduce myself, I am the master of this ancient domain." Seemingly noticing the wariness in Zhang Xuan's eyes, the figure smiled. The elder spoke in an approving tone. "Considering how you were able to see through my trap and find this location so quickly, your mental resilience and eye of discernment are far superior to others. There is no doubt that you are qualified to learn my secret art!"
He had set the time limit to be three days, but the other party had spent no more than an hour to overcome his traps and find this stone tablet. Such an accomplishment was beyond his expectations.
With his hands behind his back, the elder said, "As a fragmented soul, I won't be able to remain here for long. So, hurry up and acknowledge me as your teacher!"
"Acknowledge you as my teacher?" Zhang Xuan frowned.
"Indeed. If you wish to obtain my heritage, you have to become part of my lineage. Otherwise, how can I impart my secret art to you?" the elder replied with a nod.
Lineage was extremely important when it came to the impartation of techniques. It was improper to learn the secret arts of another without becoming the other party's student.
Hearing those words, Zhang Xuan couldn't help but hesitate. "This…"
In his long journey, he had never acknowledged anyone as his teacher before. Even Kong shi had ended up being rejected by him.
Thus, he couldn't help but feel extremely reluctant to acknowledge a person from a shady background and whose name he didn't even know as his teacher.
Noticing Zhang Xuan's conflicted expression, the elder asked in astonishment, "What? Are you unwilling?"
Back when he was alive, the line of people who were queuing up to become his student could easily have circled a city many times over, and yet… he was offering to take the other party as his student so as to pass on his secret art, and yet, the other party was still hesitating. He couldn't help but find this situation unbelievable.
After a moment of thought, Zhang Xuan replied, "It is not that I am unwilling, but I already have a teacher of my own. Without his permission, it would be improper of me to take another man as my teacher."
He had created the identity 'Yang Xuan' to make things convenient for him, so naturally, he had no qualms about bringing it out in this situation either.
Upon hearing Zhang Xuan's worries, the elder chuckled softly. "It is impossible for a person to acknowledge only a single person as their teacher throughout their entire life. Even Kong shi acknowledged many teachers back then. This isn't something you need to worry about!"
Even though Kong shi was the World's Teacher, he had not been born almighty. It was through the accumulation of experiences and knowledge that he had eventually become the great man that he was. Naturally, it went without saying that he had taken many people as his teacher over the course of his journey as well, learning from their strengths to better himself.
Since that was the case for him, it should have been even more so for others. There was really no need for others to hesitate over such a matter.
"Elder, your words ring true. I was being too obsessed with appearances." Zhang Xuan nodded. A moment later, with a light smile, he continued. "I am willing to acknowledge you as my teacher, but is it possible for you to demonstrate the secret art that you are intending to impart to me first?"
"That's not a problem," the elder replied.
It was normal for a student to want to see how powerful the teacher was before acknowledging the other party. After all, there was no one who would wish to acknowledge someone who was less skilled than them as their teacher.
If he could win the other party's admiration, the other party would be more willing to acknowledge him as his teacher.
While such a request could be seen as a challenge toward his authority, considering that many years had passed since then and he hadn't revealed his identity either, it wasn't too surprising that he'd asked such a thing of him.
The elder placed his hands behind his back, and a strong air of confidence and indomitability burst forth from him.
"The secret art that I am going to impart you is a movement technique known as the Unbounded Voyager. There is a total of five dans to it, and if you cultivate it to Consummation, you will be able to disregard the confines of space itself and travel to wherever you want to in the shortest time possible!"
"Unbounded Voyager?" Zhang Xuan's eyes lit up in excitement.
He had never heard of this movement technique before, but just from the majestic name alone, he could tell that it was an extremely fearsome move.
No wonder this Spatial Formation was known was the Unbounded World. Most likely, on top of assessing a cultivator's mental resilience, it also served to examine their understanding of space and direction as well.
Only those who possessed superior aptitude would be able to sense that something was amiss and find a solution to reach the stone tablet. And truthfully, if not for Zhang Xuan's enhanced senses from cultivating the Heaven's Path techniques, it would have been difficult for him to notice that something was amiss.
"Indeed. Barriers there may be between the heavens and earth, but the true voyager treads unbounded. If one wishes to learn the most advanced of movement techniques, they must abandon the boundaries they limit themselves by. Only when one's heart is unbounded can one travel unrestrained throughout the world," the figure said calmly.
Zhang Xuan nodded in agreement.
This was similar to how true swordsmanship, at its very core, was devoid of any maneuvers. To be limited by one's maneuvers signified that one was still stuck at the elementary level of swordsmanship.
True secret arts were techniques that had already surpassed the level of fixed maneuvers.
Even though Zhang Xuan had never seen the Unbounded Voyager before, he could tell just from those words alone that it was an extraordinary technique.
"Since you wish to see it, allow me to enlighten you!" Noticing the young man's astonishment, the elder knew that he had already succeeded in winning the other party over, and a smile surfaced on his lips.
There was no apparent movement at all, but the elder simply vanished on the spot. In the next moment, he was already several kilometers away.
How swift! Zhang Xuan's eyes widened in astonishment.
He had been unable to follow the other party's movements with his eyes at all; it was already at a level comparable to teleportation! As powerful as the Heaven's Path Movement Art was, it appeared as slow as a snail in comparison to the Unbounded Voyager.
Of course, it didn't mean that the Heaven's Path Movement Art was an inferior technique. Rather, it was solely due to the huge difference in the tiers of both techniques.
The Heaven's Path Movement Art he was still cultivating at the moment was compiled based on the fundamental movement techniques that he had collected so far, and it hadn't even reached Saint-tier. It was understandable that it was weaker than the Unbounded Voyager.
While Zhang Xuan was in shock, the figure in the distance suddenly blurred, and in an instant, it abruptly returned to where it had been before. It was as if the elder had never moved in the first place, and the figure in the distance had just been a product of his imagination!
"Are you willing to learn it?" the elder asked with a chuckle.
Back then, even Kong shi had been filled with praise for this movement technique of his. He didn't believe that there was anyone who could reject it.
"Your movement technique is indeed incredible, but…"
Halfway through his words, Zhang Xuan suddenly paused, seemingly hesitating over something.
"But?" The elder frowned.
"There are a few flaws with it that compromise its strength," Zhang Xuan replied with a conflicted expression.
"Flaws? What arrogance! Someone of your strength is actually able to discern flaws in my movement technique?" Not expecting the young man before him to be so arrogant, the elder waved his hand in displeasure.
Paying no heed to the elder's rage, Zhang Xuan began speaking. "Firstly, when you were moving earlier, even though it happened so swiftly that it was hardly discernible, if I am not mistaken, you utilized zhenqi threads to facilitate the movement.
"The concept behind the technique is simple. It is to first thread one's zhenqi to the area where one intends to move to before dragging one's body over like a puppet. This allows one to move from area to area with inconceivable speed, such that it is almost at the level of teleportation, but it has a major flaw as well. If an enemy were to notice the secret behind the technique and sever the thread beforehand, it could lead to one travelling to an unexpected area instead. Should such a scenario occur in battle, it could end up leading one to expose a fatal weakness to one's enemy.
"Secondly, the technique is extremely demanding on one's zhenqi. While it does allow one to escape a fatal situation and flee to a safe location temporarily, the huge depletion of zhenqi resulting from it might deprive one of the ability to stand against one's enemy. Furthermore, if one's zhenqi were to run dry from the execution of the technique, it wouldn't take long for one's enemy to catch up, thus placing one is an extremely dangerous position. As such, it is not a technique that one can frequently use in battle.
"Thirdly, moving at such speed is highly strenuous on one's body. You are able to do it easily because you are currently in the form of a soul, making you unaffected by the limitations of a body. On the other hand, a normal cultivator will require at least a body with the resilience comparable to a Saint-tier artifact before they can exert the technique without any incurring any injuries. How powerful must one be to obtain a physical body on par with Saint-tier artifacts? Do you have a physical body cultivation technique that can raise one's physical body to Saint-tier? If you don't have any… is there any meaning in learning this movement technique?"
The elder had not paid the other party much heed at the start, but after hearing those words, his expression changed.