Chapter 267: Encounter with a Sea Monster
Xiao Chen sheathed his saber and smiled, “No matter, there is no need to be too worried. If this person’s strength was truly that terrifying, he could have followed us for this long.
“Earlier, he gave up the thought of making a move. This means that he had just lost all opportunities to kill me. This person is overly cautious. He completely lacks the sharp spirit of a cultivator, he will only be a second-rate expert forever.”
Up in the clouds, Yue Mingshan was originally preparing to make a move. However, he realized Xiao Chen had noticed his killing Qi at the crucial moment.
Going by Yue Mingshan’s principle of being cautious, when the opponent had already noticed the killing Qi, it could no longer be called a killing move. This was how he had always been doing things.
This was what he had learned from his experience staying alive as a lone cultivator for such a long time. There are many opportunities, one cannot attack blindly.
As Yue Mingshan watched Xiao Chen and Liu Suifeng leave, he said indifferently, “It looks like I’ll have to hide my killing Qi even deeper next time. I have to be sure of killing him in one strike and not leave behind any signs.”
By the time the sun had completely sunk beneath the horizon, Xiao Chen and Liu Suifeng finally rushed to the Black Dragon River’s Harbor. There were lanterns lighting up the harbor, making the area as bright as day.
Large merchant ships appeared in Xiao Chen’s vision; this was an eye-opener for him. The ships were about forty to fifty meters tall and five or six hundred meters long. They were very similar to the huge oil tankers from his previous world.
When Liu Suifeng saw Xiao Chen’s astonishment, he explained, “There are many aquatic monsters in the Black Dragon River. Furthermore, the waves and winds are very strong. A middle-sized ship would not be able to withstand even one wave. In addition, more of the ships here are going to set out for the sea.
“The situation in the sea is even more complicated. If the ships are not made bigger, they would not be able to withstand a single wave, or what’s more, a sea monster.”
So that was why, the doubts in Xiao Chen’s heart cleared. The two of them searched for the manager of a merchant ship. After they explained their intentions, they paid ten thousand taels of gold each and obtained the rights to board the ship.
The two of them directly rode their Dragon Blood Horses onto the ship from the harbor. The broad deck meant that it was not cramped for the horses.
Soon, the workers of the merchant ship came and led the two Dragon Blood horses away. Although the deck was very broad, they did not allow the horses to wander around on it.
The deck was filled with cultivators who were catching a ride. Most of them were likely cultivators going to Xihe City for the auction.
Xiao Chen stood at the bow and held onto the rails gently. A cool breeze was blowing along the river. The breeze contained the refreshing scent of the river, making one feel relaxed and comfortable.
Xiao Chen looked forward into the darkness. The dark night was not any obstruction to his vision at all, and he was able to see the scenery very clearly.
The width of the Black Dragon River was much broader than he had thought. The huge merchant ships were simply like black dots in the darkness, they did not even occupy one percent of the river.
With one look, if it were not for the color of the river, most people would mistake it for the sea.
Liu Suifeng came over and said, “Ye Chen, the ship will depart tomorrow. There are not many empty rooms left in the ship, we will have to spend the next three days on the deck.
A merchant ship was different from a passenger ship. The inside of this ship was mostly filled with goods. As the two of them were relatively late, it was not surprising for them not be able to get a room.
Xiao Chen smiled, “That’s nothing. We already spent so many days on the savanna. This is just three days on the deck.”
They found an empty spot and Xiao Chen sat down cross-legged, entering into a state of cultivation. However, as there were many people here, the activities from circulating the Purple Thunder Divine Incantation would be too big. Xiao Chen did not want to attract too much attention.
Hence, Xiao Chen slowly circulated the Dragon and Tiger Body Sculpting Art. He was prepared to cultivate this Cultivation Technique that specializes in tempering the body.
Many cultivators on deck were cultivating as well. There were very few people speaking, so the deck was very quiet and peaceful.
The next morning, when the rays of sunlight eliminated the final bits of darkness and shone on the deck, the cultivating cultivators slowly woke up.
Xiao Chen opened his eyes as well. The instant he got up, there were crackling sounds coming from his bones. His entire body felt relaxed and his spirit felt good.
The Dragon and Tiger Body Sculpting Art had a total of five layers. The first two layers were the foundation and the last three were the main parts of the Cultivation Technique.
As of today, Xiao Chen had already reached the middle stage of the fourth layer—Dragon Roar Covering the World, Piercing through the Sky—and was heading for Great Perfection.
If Xiao Chen could cultivate this to Great Perfection, a casual roar from Xiao Chen would be like a dragon and tiger roaring. The drawn-out energy could pierce through the nine heavens and scatter the clouds.
As for the fifth layer—Dragon Tendon Tiger Bone, Pulling Mountain and Rivers—that was the true rebirth of the body. Ordinary weapons would no longer hurt Xiao Chen. Furthermore, his Qi and blood would increase explosively, his strength would be able to achieve more than ten thousand kilograms of force.
The crackling sounds of Xiao Chen’s bones attracted the attention of many cultivators. In an instant, many people seemed to notice an indistinct tiger and dragon on Xiao Chen’s body.
“It is really rare to see cultivators who focus on tempering the body nowadays.”
“The strength of the physical body is inferior. After one reaches Martial King, the might of Essence is very horrifying. A casual punch would be able to split mountains. Tempering the body is just a waste of time.”
“Indeed. In the Martial Saint realm or before, one might be able to gain an advantage with a strong physical body. However, in the latter stages, the quality of Essence is the stronger method.”
“If he had purely focused on cultivating the physical body, he would be a good seedling. Unfortunately, he is dual cultivating. Sooner or later, he will not be able to keep up both methods, causing his cultivation to come to a halt.”
When many cultivators saw Xiao Chen’s strong physical body, they all sighed and expressed regret with their words.
Xiao Chen smiled and ignored them. He believed that his way was the correct way. This was especially so after he saw what the previous Pavilion Master had left behind in the underground world; this made his belief even firmer.
Cultivating the physical body together with Essence would indeed result in him being slower than regular people. Perhaps Xiao Chen would take a longer time to become a Martial Sage when compared to people of the same generation.
However, it would be impossible to advance to Marital Emperor without a strong body. Even if not impossible, the chances were very slim. At that time, Xiao Chen would surpass all the other people.
When Xiao Chen went to the bow, he realized that the huge merchant ship had already started the journey without them knowing. The ship cut across the waves of the river’s surface as it sped along.
Xiao Chen was mildly astonished. He had not expected such a huge ship to be able to travel so fast on the river. He also did not know what was propelling the ship.
Liu Suifeng walked over to Xiao Chen and asked, “Ye Chen, do you think that expert is still watching us?”
Xiao Chen looked up at the sky and said, “I’m not sure. This person has hidden himself very well. I cannot feel any of his aura. However, my instincts tell me that he should still be above.”
“A sea monster appeared in front!”
Suddenly, someone exclaimed as the two of them were speaking. Xiao Chen and Liu Suifeng quickly headed over.
They only saw a large whirlpool appearing about a thousand meters in front. After a while, a two hundred meters tall waterspout was formed and headed for the merchant ship quickly.
“Hu chi! Hu chi!”
The water’s surface started to turn rough. The ship had already started to rock slightly. Xiao Chen extended his Spiritual Sense. At the end of it, he saw a huge strange black fish.
Liu Suifeng asked doubtfully, “What is that?”
Someone replied, “This is a Black Tuna Whale, a peak Rank 6 Spirit Beast. They are considered the tyrant of this Black Dragon River. They appear a few times every year. Any merchant ships that run into it do not have a good ending. How unfortunate, we actually ran into it.”
After the cultivators on the deck knew of the identity of this weird fish, they started to panic.
When they saw the waterspout coming nearer, many cultivators made a quick decision and jumped off the ship. They executed their Movement Techniques and leaped across the water’s surface, rushing back.
When Liu Suifeng saw the other cultivators jumping off the ship, he asked, “Ye Chen, should we jump off as well?”
Xiao Chen surveyed his surroundings and noticed the cultivators who had jumped off were the younger cultivators. Although the older cultivators had a look of panic on their face, none of them attempted to jump off.
It came even to the point where some of them revealed an amused expression when they saw people jumping off.
Xiao Chen shook his head and said, “Let’s wait first, there is no need to rush.”
Old ginger is spicier. Since the older cultivators did not choose to jump off the ship, there must be a reason they were unaware of. It would be best to observe the situation first.
[TL note: Old ginger is spicier: This means the older generation is more experienced and have more tricks up their sleeves.]
“Pu ci! Pu ci!”
Suddenly, miserable cries came from the river’s surface. Xiao Chen and Liu Suifeng turned their heads to take a look. They saw the cultivators leaping on the water’s surface being attacked by weird fish before falling into the water.
The moment they fell into the water, countless weird fish rushing over. There was a ‘ka ca ka ca’ sound coming from the water. After a while, only the bones of the cultivators were left.
The black surface of the water was dyed red by the blood, attracting even more weird fish over. The weird fish had incredibly sharp teeth. The Essence of the cultivators was unable to block them even though their bodies were very resilient and strong enough to withstand the assault of ordinary weapons.
Soon, the most of the cultivators who had fled the ship were all killed by the strange fish. A small minority of them who had excellent Movement Techniques were able to turn back and board the ship again, saving their lives.
After that, there were no more cultivators who dared to jump off blindly. After an example of what happened, no one was foolish enough.
“A group of fools. They actually dared to try crossing the Black Dragon River without having the strength of a Martial King. How reckless!” someone mocked.
However, when they saw the approaching waterspout and the rough water surface, they no longer had gloating expressions.
Suddenly, two strands of surging sword Qi came flying from the bow of the ship. They were about a hundred meters long and were very bright. It sliced apart the waves on the water’s surface and flew at the approaching waterspout.
Someone said joyfully, “The merchant ship’s guards made a move. Based on the might of this sword Qi, they would be peak Superior Grade Martial Saint.”
“A peak Rank 6 Spirit Beast should be about as strong as an Inferior Grade Martial King. If there are two peak Superior Grade Martial Saints we might be able to survive this if we pitch in.”
A huge merchant ship would normally have strong cultivators standing guard on it. A big merchant association might even have Martial Kings.
However, Martial Kings were too rare. It would be difficult for one to hire a Martial King if they were not a noble clan with inherited Martial Spirits or the Royal Court.
Out of the hundred million cultivators in the Great Qin Nation, only about ten thousand would be able to able to reach Martial King. Furthermore, these ten thousand Martial Kings normally belonged to the various big sects, noble clans, and the royal court.
Thus, the peak fighting force of a regular merchant association would be the peak Martial Saint.