From a tall mountain not too far off, Mu Tao, the Dreamy Cloud Martial Immortal, watched in amazement as Teng Qingshan punched out a set of "Water Element Fist" down below by the side of the waterfall. "Qingshan, my boy, he… has he made yet another a breakthrough? How can he be so quick?" He could clearly sense Teng Qingshan's soul. There was now an additional trace of a dream-like, cloudy and misty aura.
"Logically, it should be harder to make a breakthrough as he advances further." Mu Tao was somewhat unable to understand it.
From afar, Teng Qingshan hopped and jumped, flying across a distance of 100 Zhang. Then he immediately landed on the mountaintop.
"Congratulations Qingshan, my boy," Mu Tao said with a grin.
Teng Qingshan laughed. Back then, Pei San had advised him to first cultivate the Dao of Death and advance by one small step. Then he was to go back to comprehending the Water Elemental Dao and once again advance by one small step. When these two small steps were combined together, they would become one big step that was worth no less than 20% of the Power of the Heavens and the Earth!
Now, Teng Qingshan had gained complete comprehension of the other four Daos, aside from the Wood Elemental Dao.
"Without the Dao of Death as the medium, I don't know how much time I would've had to waste on this Water Elemental Dao before I would gain a complete understanding of it," Teng Qingshan lamented inwardly. Now, he could control as much as 80% of the Power of the Heavens and the Earth. In addition to his body's strength, he was currently completely able to match up to Emptiness Realm Experts with 90% of the Power of the Heavens and the Earth.
With 90% of the Power of the Heavens and the Earth, his power would approach 100% if he followed Emperor Yu's best technique, "Thirty-six Splitting Mountain Forms"!
"Elder Brother Mu Tao, you really should stop praising me. These five phases of Dao… I've only comprehended four of them currently. However, this last Wood Elemental Dao, I haven't even gotten an introductory grasp on it, let alone comprehended it entirely." Teng Qingshan also knew that the Dao really wasn't that easy to cultivate. At times, the road would be as smooth as drifting along with the wind and flowing along with the water current. Similar to the way a canal would be formed where water flowed, one would gain full enlightenment for a Dao.
At other times, one would get stuck at a hurdle, unable to make a breakthrough even in death.
As for the "Water Elemental Dao", it was because Teng Qingshan had the Dao of Death come in midway as an intermediary that he had been able to cultivate it at a much faster speed. If he hadn't received Pei San's advice, Teng Qingshan would probably have had to waste a lot of time on the "Water Elemental Dao".
"Hopefully, I won't stay blocked at this hurdle, the "Wood Elemental Dao"." Teng Qingshan was most worried about this point.
It wouldn't be weird for him to stay stuck at a difficult point for over 100 years.
Moreover, by the looks of it, Teng Qingshan lacked an innate skill in cultivating the "Wood Elemental Dao". Otherwise, why would he not even have grasped an introductory understanding of it?
In an open space on the west side of the Teng Family Village:
Teng Qingshan held the Reincarnation Spear in his hand, carrying it along as he walked. Then, for a moment, Teng Qingshan's figure became blurry, and the many shadows of the spear became hazy and confusing, indeterminate and faintly discernible, like clouds and mist.
A sudden yell emerged from amidst the hazy spear shadows with faint muffled thunder resounding. The giant and sharp awl, with an indistinct twining of lightning and ignited flames, ripped apart the heavens and the earth. Suddenly, this giant and sharp awl, with an indistinct twining of lightning and ignited flames, came to an abrupt stop, and all the light dissipated. So, actually, as it turns out, this was a spear that only seemed ordinary.
"As expected, it is difficult to resonate with different Powers of the Heavens and the Earth. However, if one has truly comprehended the essence of the "Water Elemental Dao" and there is no internal friction, then it's still possible." Teng Qingshan smiled slightly.
Water could merge with all living things, accept all living things, benefit all living things…
It was soft yet also unbreakable.
Furthermore, it could transform into all kinds of forms at will because of its tolerance and fluctuations. So, it was able to completely surpass the Power of the Water Elemental, becoming a kind of "lubricant," mixing in together with the other Powers of the Heavens and the Earth, and getting them to accept each other. It was then able to prevent internal friction during the use of the Power of the Heavens and Earth. For example, with 100% of the Power of the Heavens and the Earth, one could display 100% of their power!
"This is its true essence!"
"There are some people with successful predecessors who left behind secret records. These people may also manage to comprehend the Dao. However, their understanding of the Dao will obviously not be deep enough. They wouldn't be able to further refine their use of the Power of the Water Elemental." Teng Qingshan understood this very clearly. Even if they both gained a comprehension of the Dao, their comprehensions would be different.
There were some people who comprehended the Dao of Heaven and were in control of 100% of the Power of the Heavens and the Earth. However, they could only use 80-90% of its power.
Meanwhile, there were others who could display 110% of its power, and even as much as the extremes of 120% of power!
There were also others who comprehended the same Dao of Heaven, but because they had a deeper understanding, they could even go as far as directly making a breakthrough! They would then be able to create their own world and step into the Insightful Emptiness Realm.
"By depending on a book of secret records and becoming accustomed to its guidance, one will gain comprehension quickly. However, their understanding of the Dao would be adversely affected by the secret records. Take this as an example: The readers definitely would have their own understanding of the book. However, the readers would never understand the book as well as the author of the book." Teng Qingshan understood why Pei San had said so.
"Qingshan." A person approached from afar.
Teng Qingshan put away his Reincarnation Spear and walked over. The person who had just arrived was Zhuge Yuanhong.
"I guess Elder Ni and the others have all arrived by now," Teng Qingshan said.
Zhuge Yuanhong nodded. "The Law Enforcement Elders have all arrived here already." Seeing the Teng Family Village that was currently buzzing with activity, he couldn't resist smiling as he said, "Qingshan, the Teng Family Village is currently expanding. In another month or two, the expansion will have finished. The Teng Family Village will then be able to accommodate several tens of thousands of people."
Teng Qingshan also showed a slight smile.
"Qingshan." Zhuge Yuanhong's expression suddenly turned solemn.
"What's the matter?" Teng Qingshan was somewhat startled.
Zhuge Yuanhong said seriously, "According to the investigations that the intelligence scouts of my Gui Yuan Sect made… the many elite disciples of Qing Hu Island have already left Qing Hu Island. Going by my estimations, that Blind Swordmaster has probably also left Qing Hu Island. Qingshan, if you want to kill him, it may be very troublesome. I fear it'll be difficult to find him."
Teng Qingshan grinned. "Master, don't worry. If this Blind Swordmaster really wants to be a hide, it will have no effect on the Gui Yuan Sect occupying all of Yangzhou."
"The moment he takes action, leaves a trail, and then runs into me and Little Blue, he will undoubtedly die." Teng Qingshan was totally confident.
Teng Qingshan wasn't afraid of the Blind Swordmaster now even with just his own strength, let alone when he was acting together with the Undying Phoenix, Little Blue.
The key point was that even Yu Tonghai, who had been able to display 120% of his Power of the Heavens and the Earth, had been forced into cutting off his own legs… The Blind Swordmaster wasn't even worth mentioning.
"Master, since the Innate Experts of the Gui Yuan Sect have all left Jiangning County, they can stay at my Teng Family Village temporarily. Little Blue's mother is here, as is the Six Legged Bladelike Chi. This way, there's definitely no danger." Teng Qingshan nodded. "Then Little Blue and I can leave and begin taking action. This afternoon, we will leave for Qing Hu Island."
They would go attack Qing Hu Island!
Teng Qingshan had planned out this day a long time ago. However, back then, in order to be cautious, he had gathered together the Teng Family Village, the 98 disciples that formed the third generation of his Internal Martial Arts, and the elites of the Gui Yuan Sect. With Little Blue's mother and the Six Legged Bladelike Chi around, everything would be fine. After that, he would begin to deal with Qing Hu Island grandiosely and powerfully.
Now that the Gui Yuan Sect's strength was powerful and magnificent, they wouldn't need to use any strategies. They simply needed to depend carefully on their strength, advancing step by step without giving Qing Hu Island the slightest chance to take the advantage. Then they would be able to steadily take over all of Yangzhou.
"Alright, Qingshan. You're taking action this afternoon, and the 12,000 Long Gang Guards of my Gui Yuan Sect have already finished making preparations. We'll wait for your side to finish, then the Long Gang Guards will lead the main forces of 100,000 and begin the assault." Zhuge Yuanhong showed a slight smile. "12,000 First Rated Warriors fitted with Fiery Gilt Steel Battle Armor will definitely be able to move unhindered and unequaled."
The threat of these over 10,000 First Rated Warriors was comparable to that of an army of millions.
That's without even mentioning the fact that they're all equipped with Fiery Gilt Steel Battle Armor! Perhaps the Long Gang Guards would still have an overwhelming advantage even if they encountered the Heavenly God Palace's Energy Destroyers.
"Qingshan, when is Little Blue's mother leaving?" Zhuge Yuanhong inquired. With Little Blue's mother around, they had a stabilized force.
"According to what she said, she should be leaving in five days." Teng Qingshan was also at a loss about it.
The reason why Little Blue's mother was sticking around for a while more was simply to intimidate the devious-minded sect. However, regardless of what happened… Little Blue had already learned many of her mother's finishing blows, so Little Blue's mother was very at ease about her child living in the Land of the Nine Prefectures.
On the afternoon of that day:
"Little Jun, I'll have to hand over the matters of the Teng Family Village to you. The moment you discover anything odd, notify the Bladelike Chi and Little Blue's mother." Teng Qingshan carried his spear sack and a small wooden box on his back as he bade farewell to Li Jun.
"It'll be fine over here. Please be careful," Li Jun said.
Teng Qingshan nodded.
Today, those who had come to send Teng Qingshan off were only Li Jun and Zhuge Yuanhong. In order not to worry his parents, Teng Qingshan didn't tell them at all… that he would go attack Qing Hu Island today!
In the dead silence, Teng Qingshan rode on the Undying Phoenix, Little Blue, and left the Teng Family Village.
The Undying Phoenix transformed into a beam of fire-red light, flying up into the highest of the heavens. After traveling a distance of over a thousand Li, the boundless Qing Hu Island soon came into Teng Qingshan's field of view.
"Little Blue, down below."
Teng Qingshan pointed out the direction.
The two wings of the Undying Phoenix, Little Blue, flapped slightly and streaked across the sky in a circular arc, swooping down toward Qing Hu Island below.
This ancient island acted as Qing Hu Island's founding location. There was a large number of old buildings remaining on the island, as well as many historical remains of the former generations.
"What is that?"
Every one of the thousands upon thousands of Qing Hu Island disciples raised their heads to look at the sky.
They saw a beautiful divine bird that was big enough to be four Zhang long (10 meters) immersed in flames as it suspended in the sky over the island. Its entire body was covered in fire-red plumage, making it appear pure and holy. Every time it flapped its wings slightly, the flames around it would ebb and rise, and on the back of this huge divine bird was Teng Qingshan dressed in a white robe.
"Everyone on Qing Hu Island, listen up." A deep and resounding voice came down from high up in the sky, reverberating through every inch of Qing Hu Island.
Every person there raised their head to look up at the sky.
"If you want to run for your life, then every one of you better hurry and jump into Qing Lake. I'll set fire to Qing Hu Island in fifteen minutes. Those who remain on Qing Hu Island will definitely die!" Teng Qingshan's cold and detached voice rained down.
Immediately, these words aroused the anger and mad violence of the many disciples of Qing Hu Island. There were some who raised their heads and cursed in rage, while others stirred into a clamor.
Of course, there were also many disciples who rushed to the border of Qing Hu Island, preparing to jump into the lake the moment they saw the situation go bad.
Up in the sky:
Teng Qingshan looked below coldly. "The Blind Swordmaster is indeed really ruthless, immediately leaving his nest. However… since my Gui Yuan Sect and your Qing Hu Island have started a war, one of the two parties involved must be exterminated! Burning down Qing Hu Island will be a fatal blow to the morale of those on Qing Hu Island's side. Mm, after burning down Qing Hu Island, I'll go look for that blind Tie."
"Little Blue." Teng Qingshan made a slight indication.
"Yu~~" A resounding chirp rang out.
The Undying Phoenix, the legendary existence, was flapping its wings at this moment, and endless fire-red flames dropped down from the sky like a descending catastrophe. The endless flames descended incessantly, landing on every part of Qing Hu Island.
It was recorded in the books of the Wan Xiang Sect:
28th of August, afternoon.
Teng Qingshan rode on the Undying Phoenix and set fire to Qing Hu Island. The fire burned for three days and three nights before dying out. Ultimately, only a slab of scorched earth remained of Qing Hu Island, which possessed a thousand years worth of history.