Library of Heaven is Path
1071 Crossing Palms
Chapter 1071: Crossing Palms
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
"Un." Zhang Xuan nodded. "If I am not mistaken, the name of your palm art is Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm!"
The sculpture widened his eyes in astonishment. "You… know the name of the palm art?"
He had only recorded the zhenqi circulation pathway of the palm art in the form of figures on the stone tablets; nowhere on the stone tablets was the name of the palm art stated. Just where in the world did that fellow learn of the name?
"This…" Zhang Xuan was stunned for a moment before his eyebrows shot up.
It suddenly dawned on him as well that the name of the palm art was not stated anywhere on the stone tablets. Even though he had practiced the battle technique, he would only know that it was a palm art and not what palm art it was.
"Elder, I happen to have read some of your records and learned that you have a powerful palm art named Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm, which has been lost with time. While practicing the palm art recorded on the stone tablets, I realized that it is very similar to the Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm, so I deduced that this palm art might be it," Zhang Xuan replied.
One thing was for sure, he could not reveal the details concerning the Library of Heaven's Path. Whether the other party believed him or not, that was not his concern anyway.
The sculpture was stunned. "You have read some of my records?"
You did not seem to have read my records when I tried to take you in as my student back in the Unbounded World though…
Nevertheless, he knew that there was no point pursuing this matter. Thus, the sculpture turned to Zhang Xuan once more and asked, "You said that you not only deciphered the palm art, you have even grasped it as well, correct?"
"Yes!" Zhang Xuan nodded.
The sculpture shook his head. "You would have cleared the trial just by deciphering the palm art. But to practice it as well… Reckless, you are really too reckless!"
He was the one who had created the palm art, so he knew full well how difficult it was to practice the technique.
Even the strongest among their expedition group, the Saint 4-dan pinnacle master teacher, would not have sufficient zhenqi to practice the technique. For a Nascent Saint to try it out… wasn't he just asking for trouble?
"This fist art has reached Saint intermediate-tier, and it would be difficult for even Saint 5-dan experts to master the technique. Those whose cultivation don't meet the mark will only injure themselves by practicing it. Back when I first created the technique, it took an entire year and three months just to achieve Novice mastery, three years to reach Initiate, and Minor Accomplishment… nearly eight years! Of my disciples, even the most talented of them took forty years in order to reach Minor Accomplishment!" the sculpture said as he reminisced about the past.
It had not been easy even for him, the creator of the fist art, to master it. Just reaching Minor Accomplishment had taken him twelve whole years.
His students had fared much worse than him, such that they were not even worth mentioning.
Just from that alone, it could be seen how difficult it was to learn the Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm.
"You must have given up after realizing that it will be extremely difficult for you to grasp the technique with your current cultivation, right? That's the right way to go. Without my guidance, there is a good chance that you might end up cultivating it incorrectly, and that could lead to disastrous consequences…"
Before he could finish his words, the young man before him scratched his head in embarrassment and said, "While practicing the technique earlier… I think that I accidentally reached Minor Accomplishment."
"You accidentally reached Minor Accomplishment?" The sculpture shook wildly, and it nearly burst apart on the spot.
It was just a moment ago that he said that he, despite being the creator of the palm art, took twelve years to reach Minor Accomplishment. How long had it been since the young man before him started practicing it?
Even assuming that the other party had deciphered the stone tablets as soon as he arrived, he would still only have had around six hours to practice the Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Art…
And yet, Minor Accomplishment?
Was he for real?
"Indeed. To be honest with you, your Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm is indeed very strong, but it's a pity that it simply has too many flaws." Zhang Xuan sighed deeply. "It's really distressing for me to practice a technique like this."
"You!" As soon as the sculpture heard those words, he nearly fainted from rage.
Back in the Unbounded World, that fellow directed those words to another one of his soul fragments, and eventually, that fragmented soul ended up losing its composure and dissipated. And now… he was off again!
Just what did I do to offend you?
If it's so distressing for you to practice my technique, why the heck did you cultivate it to Minor Accomplishment?
"You said that you cultivated it to Minor Accomplishment?" Frowning, the sculpture glanced at Zhang Xuan and said, "It is possible for me to gauge if you have learned my palm art correctly and how deep your mastery of it is through the might you exert with it. How about this? I'll suppress my cultivation to Nascent Saint and execute my Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm at Minor Accomplishment mastery, and as long as you can withstand my attack, I will acknowledge that you have indeed grasped the essence of my palm art!"
There was probably no one who could remain calm after having his capabilities doubted by a mere Nascent Saint cultivator multiple times.
It was not the first time that the young man before him had said such words.
Thus, Ancient Sage Qiu Wu decided to teach the other party a lesson so as to make him learn that there was a greater world beyond the world he saw. Otherwise, with such a complacent attitude, the other party would not go far in life, and that would truly be a huge loss to mankind.
"This…" Hearing that the other party intended to cross palms with him, Zhang Xuan was stunned for a moment. "You are able to execute battle techniques despite being a sculpture?"
"Of course! I might only be a sculpture at the moment, but through my fragmented soul, I am still able to easily utilize strength comparable to a Nascent Saint!" the sculpture replied before raising his palm.
An indomitable aura immediately permeated the area, exerting an incredible pressure on all lifeforms standing in the vicinity.
"Ancient Sage Qiu Wu was already a renowned top-notch expert in the Master Teacher Continent before he joined Kong shi's ranks. He was known to be a peerless existence even among those who had reached the same height in their cultivation as him. Even if Ancient Sage Qiu Wu suppresses his cultivation to Nascent Saint, there's no way Principal Zhang will be able to take his palm!"
"That's a definite. After all, the palm art was created by Ancient Sage Qiu Wu, and he has practiced it for innumerable years. On the other hand, Principal Zhang has barely had six hours to grasp the technique. Within such a short period of time, no matter how talented he may be, how much could he possibly have comprehended?"
"Indeed, there is simply too huge a difference between the both of them; Principal Zhang doesn't stand a chance."
Upon seeing this sight, Wu shi and the others shook their heads.
In their view, there was no way Zhang Xuan stood a chance against Ancient Sage Qiu Wu. One had barely cultivated the technique for six hours whereas the other had years of experience. Not to mention, Ancient Sage Qiu Wu was one of the strongest experts in the continent. Even with his cultivation suppressed to Nascent Saint as well, it was impossible for Zhang Xuan to be able to match him.
"This…" Seeing how adamant the other party was on the matter, Zhang Xuan could only relent with a nod. "Alright then."
To be honest, even though he had said that he had practiced the palm art, he had not had an opportunity to execute the technique yet. All he had done was drive his zhenqi through the circulation pathway as stated in the palm art manual. This spar would serve as a good opportunity for him to gauge the strength harnessed within the Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Art.
If it was still decently powerful, he could consider using it in future battles.
"Let's begin then!" the sculpture said as he thrust his palm forward with overwhelming momentum.
A devastating aura that was reminiscent of innumerable heavenly demons descending upon the lands pervaded the surroundings. It exerted a crushing pressure not only on one's physical body but on one's soul as well.
The prowess of the Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm did not just lie in its physical might but its ability to assault souls and Primordial Spirit as well.
This was precisely why it was extremely well-known back in the ancient era despite only being a Saint intermediate-tier battle technique.
"Despite standing such a long distance away… Even though the attack isn't directed toward me, my body still instinctively stiffened in fear, rendering me incapable of retaliating at all!"
"As expected of a battle technique created by Ancient Sage Qiu Wu! If I could master it, my fighting prowess would surely be enhanced by at least twofold!"
"This palm art requires the user to infuse their soul energy into the palm strike as well in order to bring forth the immense might it harnesses. It won't be easy to grasp it."
Feeling the might of the palm art, Wu shi and the others found their bodies stiffening uncontrollably, and their faces paled in astonishment and fear.
It was simply too powerful!
To be honest, the sculpture's movements were not fast, and there was not anything particularly profound about it either. Yet, it harnessed a might that left one feeling deeply helpless before it, both physically and mentally.
This was a sensation that none of the battle techniques they had cultivated could ever hope to evoke in their opponents.
"No wonder Ancient Sage Qiu Wu said that the palm art won't be easy to practice, I can now see why. I wonder how deep a mastery Principal Zhang has achieved in the technique," Wu shi said.
The Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Palm had already transcended the level of being a mere maneuver involving the use of one's palms. In order to execute the technique, one's spirit, psyche, and mind had to be perfectly aligned with one's movements. Without years of training, it would be impossible to pull it off.
As talented as Principal Zhang was, he was simply too young. The experience he could have accrued would inevitably be terribly limited. As such, it was truly unlikely that he would be able to grasp the very essence of the Heavenly Demon Great Sorrow Art.
The reason most cultivators chose to journey through the world to experience the many facets of life, be it joy, anger, sorrow, or envy, was to temper their state of mind, making it more wholesome and resilient. There were also many cultivation techniques and battle techniques that were built upon such experiences, and without personally going through those experiences, it would be difficult for one to grasp its essence.
With such thoughts in mind, Wu shi could not help but turn his gaze toward the young man in question, only to see the young man standing calmly with his hands behind his back, not in a rush to prepare his defense. He glanced at the sky at a forty-five-degree angle. It was impossible to tell what he was thinking about, but unspeakable sorrow was reflected in the depths of his eyes.
Perhaps his lover had left him behind, or maybe his kin or a close friend had passed away before his eyes, but in that moment, he exuded a forlorn aura that felt as if the whole world had abandoned him.
Wu shi narrowed his eyes before exclaiming in shock. "That is… a terpsichorean art?"
It was just a simple posture, but it emanated deep sorrow that spectators could vividly feel with their entire existence. This was no longer just a state of mind but a technique involving the soul as well.
"Terpsichorean art? I thought that terpsichorean arts utilize dance in order to assault one's opponents?" Feng Xun asked in confusion.
In his view, terpsichore was an occupation that put others in a trance through their resplendent clothes and graceful movements. Due to the nature of the occupation, it was usually practiced only by females. How could Principal Zhang be a terpsichore as well?
Not to mention, even if he was a terpsichore, all he was doing was standing still in his plain and unspectacular master teacher robe. How could something like that be considered a terpsichorean art?
"It's true that most terpsichores utilize dance as a medium to launch soul attacks against their opponents. However… it's said that if one achieves a deep mastery in terpsichorean arts, one will be able to put others into a trance even with the simplest of gestures. Even though Principal Zhang isn't moving, I'm certain you can feel your soul resonating with his state of mind…"
At this point, Wu shi raised his finger and pointed. "Look at them…"
Feng Xun turned his gaze over and saw that the combat masters behind him had their emotions deeply moved by Zhang Xuan, and tears were flowing uncontrollably down their faces.
"This…" Feng Xun narrowed his eyes in shock.
He thought that it was already an amazing feat for Zhang Xuan to possess a deep understanding of formations and wield strength comparable to his. Who would have thought that he possessed such fearsome means to deal with the soul as well?
Even though the combat masters behind him only possessed cultivations of Saint 1-dan and Saint 2-dan, they were all experts who were capable of easily rivaling opponents far stronger than them, so it would be a huge mistake to measure them solely based on their cultivation realms. Furthermore, they had also undergone training to temper their souls and fend off soul attacks. Yet, with just a glance, they had all succumbed to Zhang Xuan's terpsichorean art, completely helpless to retaliate.
In that moment, Feng Xun felt his goosebumps rising all over his skin.
"Look, it's starting!"
Amid his shock, Wu shi suddenly exclaimed loudly, jolting him back from his daze. He hurriedly turned his gaze over and saw Principal Zhang rising his palm lightly to face the sculpture's strike squarely.
His movements could not have been considered fast, and there was nothing elegant or impressive about them either. It resembled nothing but a simple push, and yet, it left the crowd feeling as if they were standing atop a small boat amid a violent storm in the ocean.
In that instant, Zhang Xuan seemed to have morphed into a gigantic heavenly demon, and his presence crushed their souls so tightly that none of them could even gather the slightest courage to stand against him.
Noticing the abrupt change in the young man's disposition, the sculpture's initial calm expression turned slightly grave. Frowning deeply, he infused more strength into his palm strike.
The two palms finally collided with one another, and an incredible shockwave surged into the surroundings.
Before the sculpture could even process what was going on, he was sent flying into a stone tablet and shattered into pieces.
Everyone was dumbfounded.
"The same cultivation realm, the same palm strike, and the same level of mastery… and Principal Zhang was still able to defeat Ancient Sage Qiu Wu in a single strike?"