Zhang Fatso One was nervous as well, and upon hearing Bai Xiaochun’s words, he thought it made sense, so he nodded in agreement.
“Right, my master said once that I shouldn’t be seeing whether it succeeds or fails. Ninth rother, go to your room and infuse your Qi inside then.” Zhang Fatso One cleared his throat and urged him on while pretending to be calm.
Taking a few quick steps, Bai Xiaochun entered inside his room. He looked at the sword in his hand, frowning. Worried that he might undermine Zhang Fatso One’s confidence, he didn’t dare make a careless attempt. With a hand seal, the Turtle-shell Pot appeared.
“Ah, Big Brother has previously been oppressed since the start. Now that he’s finally regained his confidence with much difficulty, I can’t just let him leave in disappointment. If I do it this way, I do not know whether it will cause the flying sword’s spirit refinement to be a success or not.” As Bai Xiaochun muttered to himself, he lighted a one-coloured flame and tossed the silver sword in his hands which had not undergone qi infusion into the pot.
A dazzling silver light appeared, and after flashing once again, Bai Xiaochun recalled the Turtle-shell Pot and picked up the silvery flying sword. Gritting his teeth, Qi erupted from his body and tunneled into the sword body without a problem. This caused the silver glow to retract and form a silver pattern on the blade.
“Success!” Bai Xiaochun was pleasantly surprised. He didn’t know whether it was purely Zhang Fatso’s efforts or the changes he made afterwards that produced this result, but he quickly pushed open the door and walked out.
“Big Brother, you did it, you really did it! Big Brother you’re really good!”
In the courtyard was the nervous Zhang Fatso One, his face rigid and body shaking. Seeing Bai Xiaochun walk out with the silver-patterned sword, he slapped his thigh and laughed towards the sky in delight.
“How about that, how about that!”
“Just as I said, I didn’t control the strength well enough! Back at the Purple Cauldron Mountain, I even succeeded thrice in a row, even my master said I was gifted, you see? Ninth brother, we succeeded this time, didn’t we!” Zhang Fatso One was very excited. Beaming with joy, he took the sword Bai Xiaochun handed to him and inspected it with a grin.
Beside him, Bai Xiaochun’s eyes exposed deep respect, exciting Zhang Fatso One even further. Taking a deep breath, he motioned with his arm.
“Come, I’m feeling good today! I’ll refine it once again, let’s make this a twice-refined sword!”
“Big Brother, perhaps some other time…” Bai Xiaochun felt something was wrong. He vaguely remembered that the sect had many rules regarding spirit refinement.
“No problem!” Zhang Fatso One didn’t listen as he held the sword and concentrated hard and began another spirit refinement on the flying sword with utmost care.
The second spirit refinement was clearly much harder and Zhang Fatso One had already burned through most of his ores. His body was trembling and he even consumed quite a few pills as he struggled to channel the energies between heaven and the earth into the sword’s blade. When the blade finally shone with a silver light, Zhang Fatso One dropped on the ground and sat, breathing heavily.
Excitement was evident in his eyes as he handed the flying sword to Bai Xiaochun.
“Give it another try!”
Nodding immediately, Bai Xiaochun took the sword, but before he could proceed, Zhang Fatso gripped his hand and spoke seriously.
“Don’t do it here. Let me tell you something ninth brother, the most important part about infusing Qi is precisely believing. Believing in it is the same as having the Heavens’ assistance. Since you first succeeded in your room, do it there again!”
Blinking, Bai Xiaochun felt that Zhang Fatso One had truly comprehended spirit refinement. After nodding seriously, he headed back to his room, convinced.
“Maybe senior brother’s spirit refinement is really that good, and even if I didn’t use the Turtle-shell Pot, it would have still succeeded.” As he thought of this, Bai Xiaochun gazed at the flying sword in his hands, and without using the Turtle-shell Pot, he spread his Qi and directly infused it into the blade.
In a blink of an eye, the silver light flashed once again, only to rapidly dim moments later. With cracking sounds, the flying sword turned to scrap.
His expression immediately turned bitter. Just as he was starting to fret, Zhang Fatso’s anxious voice sounded out.
“Ninth brother, I think I saw a silver light? How was it, did it succeed?”
“Oh… I didn’t try yet, I’ll try right now…” Bai Xiaochun answered quickly, panicking.
Inside the courtyard, Zhang Fatso One turned silent, his face bitter. He wasn’t stupid, he noticed the silver light flash after Bai Xiaochun entered the cabin.
He sighed softly, he knew that Bai Xiaochun didn’t want him to feel down. He took a deep breath and said toward the cabin.
“Ninth brother, your Senior Brother know you tried your best. It’s alright I’ll… I’ll be going first…” Zhang Fatso One who had come bursting with excitement had now taken a heavy blow. This inevitably caused his mood to plummet.
He knew that that he had been reckless. According to his master, spirit refinement was a very mysterious art, and no one was guaranteed success; no one had a perfect success rate. However, in the cultivator world, there seemed to be odd phenomenon … Success is for the successful, failure is for the failures.
It was a mouthful, but actually it was simply describing the power of belief. It was a mysterious phenomenon, as if confidence itself resulted in success.
So in the cultivation world, there were two ways to go about it. One was the traditional way, the spirit refiner was only responsible for the spirit refinement, and without infusing the Qi themselves, they hand the refined item to the owner who should in turn, never infuse it in front of the refiner.
This way, regardless of success or failure, the mind of the refiner would not be affected. After returning the item to the owner, the refiner would forget the event and remain calm and confident.
The other way, was a way of cultivation. An ancient art known as The Spirit’s Constitution. It was the art of the much more mysterious method, requiring the refiner to witness the result of the refinement. If it was a success, the refiner would grow stronger. More successes would lead to greater formidability. It was, however, too extreme. Too many failures could potentially destroy any talent residing within the refiner, resulting in one no longer daring to involve themselves with spirit refinement.
Even so, many still pursued the extreme. Even Zhang Fatso One’s master, Xu Meixiang, admitted that people who practiced this method and witnessed continuous successes would have their confidence hugely boosted, making their spirit refinement shockingly good.
The greatest treasure within the Spirit River Sect was the Heaven’s Edge sword. It was refined ten times, and was done so precisely by one of the refiners insane enough to go down the extreme way.
Zhang Fatso was bitter, he knew that those in the Purple Cauldron Mountain walked the traditional path, but he had been overly excited, so he messed up, losing his inner peace. And now, who knew how long it would take for his confidence to be restored?
In his room, Bai Xiaochun stared at Zhang Fatso One’s disappointed figure through the window. He gritted his teeth, he didn’t want Zhang Fatso One to just leave like that, disappointed, so he quickly took out another flying sword, summoned his Turtle-shell Pot, and refined it twice.
Smiling bitterly, Zhang Fatso One pushed open the courtyard’s gate, and just when he was about to leave, Bai Xiaochun’s surprised shout arrived.
“Big brother, it was a success!” Bai Xiaochun pushed open the cabin’s door, in his hands was a flying sword with two silver patterns on it, and on his face, an overjoyed expression could be seen.
“Really?!” Zhang Fatso One was startled, he quickly turned around to see the flying sword held in Bai Xiaochun’s hands. His body shook with disbelief, but excitement slowly surged into his eyes.
“Haha! I, Zhang Fatso One, am truly a Heaven’s Chosen for spirit refinement! To succeed twice in spirit refinement, twice, ah I actually succeeded!”
Zhang Fatso One hugged Bai Xiaochun happily, tears of joy almost ran down from his eyes. In reality, his talent in cultivation was average, and he would have never entered the Spirit River Sect if his ancestors didn’t have relations with his current master.
Back at Burning Stoves Kitchen, he had to use those precious treasures to reach the peak of the third level of Qi Condensation. Upon entering the outer sect, without those treasures, his cultivation lost its speed. Although he wished the best for Black Fatso Three and Bai Xiaochun, as they surpassed him, he couldn’t help but feel dispirited.
Now that he realised his potential in spirit refinement, he was swept with joy that would be hard for others to imagine. Knowing that he can now also be useful, he felt incredibly excited and laughed towards the skies. As great confidence surged inside his entire body, faint traces of a strange energy were gathering around his body... These traces of strange energy was precisely the materialisation of his willpower.
The spirit refinement’s extreme way was one where greater confidence promised greater willpower, which in turn promised greater success!
Perhaps all that was needed was for the refiner to simply believe in themselves. With that confidence, successful refinements would come, and the mysterious willpower would form.
Zhang Fatso One left excited and joyful. As he disappeared into the distance, Bai Xiaochun stood in the courtyard wondering whether he had done the right thing. But after looking at Zhang Fatso One’s happy face once again, he received his answer.
A few days after that, Bai Xiaochun heard from Xu Baocai that the reason for the lack of disciples on the Scented Cloud Mountain was due to the outer sect disciples above the sixth level of Qi Condensation desperately trying to reach the eight level in order to join the Heaven’s Chosen War.
The Heaven’s Chosen War between the South and North Bank was scheduled to begin in three months, and it would be the center of not just the entire Spirit River Sect’s attention, but also the entire Eastern Forest continent’s cultivator clans’s attention.
This battle involved the top ten of each Bank’s outer sect, who would be the Spirit River Sect’s dragons and phoenixes, rising up through the ranks and entering the inner sect. Both fame and influence in the sect would put these people in a different light than ordinary outer sect disciples.
(ED note: dragons and phoenixes here is referring to the outstanding male and female disciples)
The top ten in the Heaven’s Chosen War, which occurred once in every thirty years, would have their names passed down in glorious legends. They would become famous within the Spirit River Sect and receive acknowledgement even from other similarly formidable sects.
At the same time, the Spirit River Sect would also give the top ten great gifts, especially to the number one. It was said that the Contribution Points alone could measure up to a hundred thousand, not to mention other great treasures and the opportunity to enter the sect’s treasury.
As such, many were excited.
Not to mention the qualifications to enter the legendary Legacy Order, this brought the top ten disciples of the Heaven’s Chosen War an even greater motivation.
Before the Heaven’s Chosen War, the North and South Bank would determine their top ten strongest disciples that would represent their respective Bank.
And this time, the requirement had been set at the eighth level of Qi Condensation, anyone who wished to participate and enter the inner sect would need to fulfill two requirements; to be at the eighth level of Qi Condensation and to pass the examination. Usually, the promotional examinations could be quite a lot of different things. But every thirty years, for the Heaven’s Chosen War, the examination would always be through a battle.
And this sort of trial was acknowledged by the sect disciples to be the toughest trial, and at the same time, the most anticipated one as well!
It was the reason why many outer sect disciples chose not to take the previous promotional examinations, they were waiting for the qualification battles to promote themselves by being in the the top fifty, hoping to enter the top ten and represent their Bank in the Heaven’s Chosen War between the South and North Bank.
People such as Shangguan Tianyou, Lu Tianlei, Zhou Xinqi and some others all had the same idea of aiming for the top ten and enter the Inner Sect as the top ten in the Heaven’s Chosen War. And ultimately, years later, enter the Legacy Order.
4th guaranteed chapter of the week.
Edited by: Crimsonguard, Arch