Han Li slowly transferred energy from his meridians back to his dantian. This would be the 7th Da Zhou Tian cycle of the day, and Han Li knew that his body had already reached the peak of what it could handle. If he were to try to do another cycle, then his meridians would all completely rupture, causing him to feel pain extreme enough that it would cause him to wish for death. The moment he thought about the pain, despite how courageous he was, he couldn’t help but break out in cold sweat.
(TL Note: Da Zhou Tian is an important exercise for life energy cultivators.)
It had already been 3 months since Han Li joined the sect, and there were only 3 months left until his examination.
The amount of secret disciples that were able to officially promote to the inner sect was very small. Most secret disciples weren’t able to overcome the requirements and had no other choice but to pack their things and become a disciple of the outer sect.
The children that didn’t pass would generally enter the Gathering Treasure or the Flying Bird Hall. For those showed an outstanding performance, they would receive another step further in their training and would then have the possibility to join the more respected Foreign Blade Hall. Of course, it was only natural that the Four Seas Hall was the most respected of the four Halls, but unfortunately they would only accept those who made a name for themselves with their martial arts. If one couldn’t best others with their own strength, then it was pointless to even dream about joining.
Han Li remembered the examination from two months ago and he couldn’t help but feel a bit frightened in his heart.
A few dozen miles away from the Red Cloud Mountain was a neighboring desolate mountain where a group of people were wrestling. There were a few senior disciples who excelled in martial arts and were fiercely locked in combat. With each and every test, Han Li couldn’t help but to feel a little bit of joy at the pain of others.
Han Li and Zhang Tie had never taken such a frightful test before. Elder Mo had said that his examination would only be a small application of his chant to cultivate, but Han Li didn’t dare believe the test would be as easy as it sounded. Even now, Han Li could clearly remember the intense effort he had to put into cultivation.
According to Elder Mo, this mysterious chant was only a single part of a set, and Han Li and Zhang Tie were only on the first cultivation chant. It could be said that these two people, in half a year, had completely succeeded at at the first layer cultivational chant. If the two were able to overcome Elder Mo’s expectations, then they could either become personal disciples of Elder Mo or earn a rank equivalent to the other inner sect disciples of the Seven Dao Sect.
Not to mention, Han Li had also heard from others that the treatment of inner sect disciples and outer sect disciples so were vastly different that it spoke volumes of how enormous of a difference there was between the two. He then realized how ignorant he was and cast away any thoughts of becoming an outer sect disciple. At the time, he would be satisfied with joining the Seven Dao Sect only to receive some silver and then return home with it. Everything else had seemed irrelevant because, above all else, he truly desired to help his family at home, which lived in poverty. His only thoughts were to be able to take that money home just so he could give his family a bit of a better life.
After learning the chant from Elder Mo, Han Li had not once left the house. Day and night he continued to practice it and he spent every possible moment doing so. Because Elder Mo hadn’t given them any directions on how to cultivate, Han Li could only theorize by himself. After discussing with other young cultivators, he discovered they were using the Seven Dao’s “Positive Yang Energy”, a self-meditated cultivation method.
Relying on this method, he had spent three months of using his chant to cultivate, but Han Li was shocked to realize that his progress was extremely slow! He had spent a great deal of effort and yet he was only rewarded with only one small thread of cool energy inside of his body. The energy was so infinitesimal that he could hardly notice that it was there. If he hadn’t checked his body carefully for results, he would have not even known it was there.
Could this be the True Qi the inner clan was roughly teaching? Han Li suddenly came to this realization.
But the others who were cultivating the “Positive Yang Energy” had told him that within their bodies there was a distinct flow of warm energy and Qi generated within them. By comparing the results it was obvious how far behind Han Li was.
The children who used the the True Qi from the “Positive Yang Energy” in their body were able to punch a fist sized hole through a small tree trunk. They could even leap 3 meters into the air. Han Li, however, from his strange True Qi, felt practically no changes from his normal state. The only difference he could tell was that his spirit was seemingly more vigorous and his appetite was even more ravenous than before he came to the mountain. But what use was that? Seeing the other children on the mountains with gaining such ridiculous power, Han Li couldn’t help but feel dejected.
After realizing that he had barely made any progress, Han Li had nearly given up on his several months of hard work. He thought that with such a huge gap between himself and others, there was no way to catch up with the remaining amount of time and pass Elder Mo’s test. It would be better to plan for his trip back home instead.
Incidentally, one day Han Li had came across the cultivating Zhang Tie and realized something. Ever since Zhang Tie had started to cultivate with this chant, his body showed no changes at all. There was no effect; not even a little amount of True Qi could be seen like there was in Han Li’s body.
With the knowledge that he had at least accomplished something, Han Li had reclaimed the confidence he threw away earlier. With the remaining amount of time, he continued to try to cultivate to the best of his abilities.
No, he began to work even harder, even more crazily.
Han Li began to use every single second to meditate and cultivate. Even during the time to sleep, he had begun to maintain the posture to cultivate in hopes to have even the littlest amount of change. Of course this intense method of training could not be maintained for longer than just a few days. The reason was the lack of sleep, causing him to be incapable of keeping up his daytime cultivation efficiency.
What puzzled Han Li the most was that after Elder Mo had taught the two that chant, he did not interact with the two of them anymore. Even their questions on cultivation had been ignored by him as if he could not even notice their existence.
Everyday, Elder Mo would bring a book with 3 words written in black on the cover to study, staring at it if it had a beautiful woman in it and if the book was made of pure gold. From then, Han Li and Zhang Tie no longer considered Elder Mo as an elder that would teach and heal them, and was instead a person who was bitterly studying to pass the imperial exam and had no time to deal with them. Soon after the two children learned to read, they recognized that the 3 words on that book had said, “Scripture of Longevity”. It was a book about how to cultivate oneself to the point of extending one’s life.
At that moment, the two children suddenly realized that Elder Mo wasn’t trying to pass the imperial exam, he was trying to live thousands of years like the river tortoise.