The hammering skill is all about frequency, power, and speed. In this respect, Junior Leopard had some experience. He had a good grasp of the hammering skill. As for the Nine-styled Wild Hammering Skill which he had learned, although it was a martial art skill, one could only comprehend it through the hitting of metal. From his insights, he was now able to fold and forge nine times after each fire, each time in between breaths.After striking nine hammers in succession, each hammer had the same strength. After that it would pass through the fire nine times, striking the hammer a total of 721 times. The weapons forged in this manner were finely composed in structure and the material was evenly spread. The impurities were few, and it extremely sharp.
Of course, this 729 hits were the most that he could manage in one day. It must be known, although the time needed to hammer to 729 times was not long, however, it was 81 breaths, and it was sufficient to squeeze dry all of his strength within his body. Adding on to the process of going through the fire each time, which was the smelting process, the method needed to control the fire and the energy spent were equivalent to striking the hammer. Although in total only 4-6 hours of time was spent, after this 4-6 hours, all his energy was sapped up, and couldn't even lift up a hammer.
He was so meticulous because he was forging the weapons for himself. It wasn't the case when he was forging other people's weapons, such as the weapons displayed at the Wu's ironware shop for sale. In other people's eyes, the weapons looked extremely sharp and the quality superior but for him all the hammering and striking to forge those weapons was merely just for fun.
Of course, it was not his fault. Whoever heard of a real authentic master forging many excellent pieces of works. Generally speaking, it would be great if an authentic master could forge a dozen excellent works in their whole lifetime. This was because forging weaponry would severely consume energy and strength. Junior Leopard forged two Nine Forges Kunais and he was already extremely exhausted. For these wizard weapons to forge dozens or even hundreds of them, creators would need a very long time to recover their pneuma.
Overall, Junior Leopard was very satisfied with the two Kunais that he had forged himself. This was especially the case when he successfully used the Nine Dragons Heavenly Fire Technique to direct his pneuma. Even though he did not know how this directing of pneuma would impact the two Kunais which he had forged, he was still very happy about it.
On the second afternoon, Junior Leopard packed up the second Kunai which he had finished smelting. He left the smelting room with a face full of excessive desire.
"Are you heading home?"
Qin Xuanlong looked at Junior Leopard somewhat surprisingly. However, he realized it very quickly. He was just but a nine-year-old kid. He had come to the Wu Family for about a year and hadn't returned home once. It would be just the same for anyone else as it was normal for those who became apprentices to not go home for four to five years.
However, Junior Leopard was not normal. He was no longer an apprentice, but a Blacksmith who could earn money in the ironware shop. Other Blacksmiths who lived nearby had a day or two off each month so for Junior Leopard to stay here for an entire year only went to show that he was a fairly patient guy.
Thinking about it, he said without hesitating: "Well, the New Year will be here in two months time anyhow. You can go home and come back after the New Year. Do not forget what you have learned."
Junior Leopard was very happy and thanked him a lot. It was very nice to have a two-month holiday and celebrate the New Year with his family.
He did not go home right away. Anyway, in a few days time, it would be the new year. It was also Qingyang Market's market-day. By then he could go back with those hunters who came over from the village to the market. This could save him some trouble.
The main reason why he asked to go home was that there had always been one thing on his mind.
That was, the last scene that Li Haoran had left in his memory.
In fact, Li Haoran left him only a few memories. Apart from the training method for the Yin and Yang Heavenly Sword, it was his fear of the cyan-clothed young man who took his life away. Another thing was why his soul had left his body.
Junior Leopard thought one reason was that he practiced Yin and Yang Heavenly Sword, so his soul was refined by the sword's Qi. The other reason was the weird wind blowing suddenly at the West Mountain pass at that time.
The chilly wind gathered his soul together. Otherwise, based on the strength of his soul, it would have long been blown away by the mountain wind.
Junior Leopard had always suspected that the gust of strange wind was a kind of Evil Qi.
There were all kinds of Evil Qi between heaven and earth, but it did not mean that an Evil Qi was easy to find. You can compare it to there being so many beautiful women in the world but you may not be able to sleep with a beautiful woman in this life.
It requires on to have a good moral standing to find Evil Qi.
Junior Leopard had desired to practice the Yin and Yang Heavenly Sword for a long time, but it was difficult for him.
It was hard for ordinary people to find an Evil Qi, let alone two opposite kinds of Evil Qi with extreme properties that the Yin and Yang Heavenly Sword needed.
Actually, although Evil Qi really existed at the West Mountain pass, according to Junior Leopard's current cultivation, he was unable to collect it or practice it. He merely wanted to be prepared for practice in the future.
Living in the Wu's for so long, he naturally knew a lot of things in the martial arts world. Of course, he now understood better some special techniques such as Yin and Yang Heavenly Sword.
As for this kind of method that could condense the heaven and earth Evil Qi that the body was unable to absorb, he was extremely looking forward to it. Hence, no matter what, he wanted to go to the West Mountain and see the Evil Qi there, to actually look at what it was.
The sky gradually dampened. Raindrops also started to fall.The chilly wind carried the humid air and blew it in his face. This caused Junior Leopard to somewhat have a chilly mood as well.
It was a rainy market-day.
Very few people went to the market. Junior Leopard went to where villagers usually sold things, only to find that none of the villagers were there.
"Don't tell me I have to go home alone?" Junior Leopard's facial muscles twitched slightly. To be honest, the mountainous village where he lived was not far from Qingyang Market and only a 25,000-meter distance. In his previous world, it would only take 20 to 30 minutes by car. However, this current world was totally different. There were no cars but endless mountains. What's worse, the road was muddy due to the rain. Junior Leopard could imagine how he would look like, when he got home.
After some hesitation, Junior Leopard decided to go. After all, he had asked for leave and also knew that staying at that remote village was much safer than Qingyang Market.
Therefore, putting on his coir raincoat and renting a little donkey from the carriages and horses shop of the Ding's, he left. On such a rainy day it was better to ride than to walk. Because he could not ride a horse, he had no choice but to rent a little donkey that looked like a strong one.
Riding on the donkey and wearing a coir raincoat, he went towards the mountain village. Walking under the drizzle he felt free without a care in the world.
"Unexpectedly, the surrounding scenery on such a rainy day is actually very beautiful!"
Seen from afar, the outside of Qingyang Market was enveloped by the undulating mountains. The mountains were not high, but amid this misty rain, they became more appealing to the beauty of obscurity. Junior Leopard on the donkey looked at them with a carefree mood.
At that moment, with a burst of lightning and thunder, a fierce gale sprang up and soybean-sized raindrops blew down. It was so violent that the coir cap on Junior Leopard's head was blown off.
Without his coir cap, Junior Leopard's head was exposed to the heavy rains.The rain was too heavy to even open his eyes.
"Come on! Be quick!" Junior Leopard dared not wonder anymore. There was no shelter all around. Junior Leopard had no choice but to whip his donkey. Naturally, the donkey felt the pain and rushed out randomly. After a quarter of an hour, it gradually stopped raining. The donkey then stopped at a mountain stream.
The original mountain stream was a mere trickle, which Junior Leopard had to pass through when he went home. In the past, it was easy for people to leap over that mere trickle, and even more so for a donkey. But now, after the heavy rains, the flood currents on the mountain came down and the river banks rose up. The mere trickle stream had turned into a great river, about 10 to 13 meters wide. Because the flood currents rushed down from the top of the mountain, sometimes trunks and animals would be carried downstream, which caused obstacles for him on the way home.
"It can't get any worse than this!" looking at the flowing mountain stream, Junior Leopard sighed. Junior Leopard was worriedly pondering how to pass the river, when he heard a light shout over his head. He raised his head and saw a light blood shadow galloping from the southwest. The blood shadow moved so swiftly that it arrived over Junior Leopard's head in the blink of an eye. At that moment, Junior Leopard saw it clearly, it was a light of mournful blood. When Junior Leopard turned his head, he caught a whiff of evil blood.
Junior Leopard felt the back of his neck tighten and then he was lifted up about hundreds of meters high by a force. The donkey rushed into the mountain stream. After struggling for sometime, the donkey sank to the bottom of the river and completely vanished.
"Ah------!" Junior Leopard uttered a brief sound and stopped abruptly. A wave of hot strength entered into his neck and closed all acupoints of his body off. He was forced to watch the raindrops and smoke in the air with eyes wide open, only to find that his body did not belong to him, it was as if he became a ghost that couldn't feel anything.
"Eh?" at that moment, although Junior Leopard could not utter a single word, the senses of his eyes and ears remained normal. After the wave of hot strength went through his body, Junior Leopard clearly heard a sound of shock.
The sound was short but clear. Soon it was silent. The force lifted Junior Leopard's neck and flew towards the deep ends of the Misty Mountain. Even, during the flying process, the little village he lived in flashed away and disappeared quickly in front of his eyes.
"Am I flying?" Junior Leopard had finally managed to regain his composure. He could not move anymore, so he was not able to see who had lifted him up.
"Shit, isn't this the world of a wuxia? How can he fly? Are those legends about Gang Qi real? Is Gang Qi able to really make people fly?" Full of questions, he did not feel as though he was in a crisis at all. Rather, Junior Leopard felt a sense of excitement.
After flying for a while, Junior Leopard could see an expansive green. Junior Leopard knew that they were heading deep into the Misty Mountain.
Misty Mountain, stretched on for tens of thousands of miles. At this time he was lifted up by someone and flying in the sky, yet he saw the routes below, and it was composed of tall mountains and great rivers. A few mountains formed the ridges, as if it was an undulating wave, flying past him as if it was retreating back. Sometimes they would penetrate the cloud area; surrounding him were fine clouds which were smashed apart by the Gang wind. Slowly the soul became dense, it started flying, becoming a ball and being able to be caught by hand.
"It was clearer than the airplanes in his previous life!" The surrounding clouds shaped like rolls and strips of cotton. "What a pity! I can't move, otherwise, I could stretch myself out."
Junior Leopard was pitying himself secretly, when he felt his body sinking down. Soon with a heavy fall, he felt that all the inhibitors in his whole body were being released suddenly. He looked only to find that he was approaching the steep cliffs. A cluster of sharp rocks at the bottom, like the tip of a sword, were facing Junior Leopard. If he fell down, he would definitely die. Soon he was panicking and uttered a weird sound.
When he made the strange sound, he perceived the strong blood evil energy again. Then, there was a pause and he was held by a big hand and fell down slowly.
"I thought that you were unafraid of anything. I never thought that you would be afraid of death!"
He heard someone speaking in his ears ruggedly with a thick sense of taunting.
When this man flew in the air, lifting Junior Leopard, he was curious about why Junior Leopard was not scared. Generally speaking, no matter who met this thing, he or she would be greatly frantic, but this guy who he lifted was abnormal. Hence, the man released Junior Leopard to test his reaction.
"Only fools are not afraid of death!" Junior Leopard realized that this time he could speak, hence he shouted, "Even the old man in the heavens fears death!"
"Right! Right! Even the old man in heaven fears death!" The man roared with laughter and rushed into the depths of the mountain forest while carrying Junior Leopard.
When Junior Leopard was about to land, the man released him. Junior Leopard found that all his strength came back. He was about seven to eight feet above the earth. After a strong breath, Junior Leopard threw his body into reverse, which was just what he had learned in PE in the previous world. After several reverses, he stood steadily, with his feet on the ground and stabilized himself. He found that he did not get injured at all. He raised his head, delighted. Looking at the place that he fell down, he found that it was a little road in the valley. Along the roadside of both cliffs, there were towering trees and old vines. With fine rains and steaming mist, the valley looked like a fairyland.
Seeing Junior Leopard being intoxicated by the beauty of the valley, the man did not know whether he should be angry or happy. It seemed that this guy did not fear him at all.
"Little fella, have you seen enough?"
"Hum!" Junior Leopard was aware that he was in a crisis and turned around immediately.
"Oh, my god! How can I have such bad luck?"