Legend of the Great Saint
Book 1, Chapter 26
A thick warm current started to boil inside his belly. He immediately stood up and practiced his punches in the yard until the warmth inside his stomach entirely dispersed. Only then did he breathe in relief and stop.
Usually he would feel tired after training his fist technique for so long, but today he was in great spirits. The effects of this medicinal liquor made from soaked ginseng were much better than simply eating meat.
Moreover the shred of true qi inside his body also seemed to grow a little. Although it was minute, it was nevertheless genuine progress.
“A medicinal liquor soaked from ordinary ginseng is already like this. I don’t know what effect it would have if it were soaked with that spirit ginseng?” He also once had this kind of thoughts, but thinking about the difficulty, then thinking again about the aftermaths of obtaining the spirit ginseng, he could only drop it.
In a mere few days, there were already several hunters carried down the mountains, the dead dead and the wounded wounded. It was obvious that the group of ginseng gatherers weren’t an easy bunch to deal with either. Although Li Qingshan had agreed to join the Horse Rein Village, it was a mere temporary arrangement, and he had no actual plan to insert himself in the dispute between the two villages.
In the turn of an eye, it was already the fifteenth of the eighth month, the season for the mid-autumn festival1. Inside the mountain forest, Sick Yellow Tiger looked at the tired faces around him. During these days, he’d led the hunters through the mountains. They had to keep their vigilance up at all time, even if they held the upper hand and had almost killed the ginseng gatherers to an utter rout.
But it was also difficult to prevent losses on his side, and they likewise weren’t in good shape, while the spirit ginseng stayed a thing from the legends that no one had seen with their own eyes. This kind of meaningless sacrifice was indeed already meaningless.
Sick Yellow Tiger let out a long sigh and issued the order to return to the village. Little Black hurriedly said: “Chief hunter, you can’t give up, your health.” Sick Yellow Tiger said: “The village comes first!” Not only they had to reunite with their families for the mid-autumn festival, winter was also coming, and the village had to make preparations to live through it.
In a corner of Horse Rein Village, in Grandpa Cang’s yard, Sick Yellow Tiger was grinning:
“Grandpa Cang, how’s that kid?”
“He’s an innate divine archer, in the future his archery will certainly be above yours or mine. Only…”
“His heart isn’t in Horse Rein Village. Even if we let him join Horse Rein Village it would also be for nothing. We’re hunters guarding the mountains, while he’s a wolf, moreover he’s a lone wolf. He will definitely travel far away from here!”
“Lone wolf? That’s because he’s never experienced ‘lone wolves die easily while wolf herds are hard to contend with’. I’ll go see him, I don’t believe that he’s not temped by the Horse Rein Village’s ‘chief hunter’ position.”
“You’re truly determined to make him chief hunter.”
Sick Yellow Tiger laughed: “That’s still going to depend on his abilities.”
“Qingshan, was the living conditions to your satisfaction during this time?” As soon as Sick Yellow Tiger set foot in the courtyard, he sent his greetings outspokenly and forthrightly.
“Many thanks for the chief hunter’s concerns, I’ve lived very well.” Since the matter about Li Qingshan killing seven ginseng gatherers spread out in the village, everyone became friendlier with him. But it was also because this insinuated that he had forged a sworn enmity with the Ginseng King Village, and since that group of ginseng gatherers weren’t an amicable bunch, he could only depend on the Horse Rein Village to survive.
But was this kind of arrangements really the only choice he had?
Li Qingshan said: “Chief hunter, I want to try exchanging a few blows with you again!”
Sick Yellow Tiger’s surprised vision met Li Qingshan’s eyes filled with self-confidence.
Sick Yellow Tiger said: “Alright, then let me see your achievements during those days.”
“Hah!” Li Qingshan didn’t wait for Sick Yellow Tiger to adopt his posture and suddenly fought over, directly sending a fist without any fancy, violently punching toward Sick Yellow Tiger’s chest. It faintly made the sound of air being broken through.
“What a fierce kid!” Sick Yellow Tiger used his arms to block. With a resounding “pa”, he retreated three steps deng deng deng, only stopping then. He swung his painful arms a few times and there was some astonishment on his face: “What a powerful strength!” Last time they fought, he could estimate that his strength wasn’t so great back then even if they hadn’t clashed head to head.
Li Qingshan said: “Watch this move again!” He rushed over and attacked continuously, his punches successively attacking his opponent’s face and chest. His offensive was like a violent hurricane, displaying his free and unrestrained fists to the apex, his momentum fierce to the utter limit.
Sick Yellow Tiger had been temporarily too confident and lost the decisive opportunity. He fell downwind, but it also stimulated the pride in his chest, “I won’t believe you’re really superior to me in strength and energy.” His inner strength circulated and flowed inside his meridians to his arms. Swelling with the inner strength, his arms almost doubled in thickness as he met Li Qingshan’s fists face on.
For martial artists, the whole of their martial art resided in this inner strength. Fighting like this, he was already using his genuine power.
“Bang bang bang bang!” The two men’s arms intersected each other. Each of them met force with force, and each strike created giant sounds of collision with flesh and bones, like two wild beasts biting and tearing at each other. It was very crude and brutal.
Sick Yellow Tiger’s experience was after all rich. He calculated the right timing and smashed his fist toward Li Qingshan’s chest.
Li Qingshan unexpectedly didn’t try to hide or dodge, but instead launched his own fist toward Sick Yellow Tiger’s face.
Sick Yellow Tiger thought: “I painstakingly cultivated my inner martial art for so many years. Even a calf would collapse under the strength of my punch. Even if you cultivate a hard outer martial art, you’ll still be injured.” As to Li Qingshan’s fist, he didn’t put much mind into it. When his fist struck Li Qingshan first, Li Qingshan’s body would necessarily go stiff for a moment.
With a “bang,” the punch hit Li Qingshan’s chest. Li Qingshan’s body indeed paused an instant, but instantly restored its condition and wasn’t affected. Sick Yellow Tiger was greatly surprised, and hurriedly rolled away awkwardly. The fist scratched past his cheek, causing vague pain.
Li Qingshan smiled “hehe.” He stood still and no longer pursued to attack.
Sick Yellow Tiger stood up: “You’re actually fine?!” He had the clearest understanding about the power of his own punch. Even if Li Qingshan could block the fist’s strength with his external martial art, he still couldn’t block the true qi contained inside his fist, but it actually wasn’t effective.
Li Qingshan rubbed his chest: “It’s very painful!” Right now there had been a breath of qi penetrating through his skin and hitting inside his body, but it’d been instantly dispelled by the true qi inside and didn’t cause the slightest harm. Afterward he’d caught his breath back right away and almost struck Sick Yellow Tiger.
If he had to borrow Sick Yellow Tiger’s words to explain it, it’d be the difference in quality between acquired inner strength and innate true qi.
Sick Yellow Tiger didn’t know whether to cry or laugh. This punch he was fully confident in only obtained this kind of evaluation. But any martial artist had an ambitious and competitive heart, so he shouted: “Then take some more punches from me!”
The two of then started fighting again. This time, Sick Yellow Tiger no longer had any reservation and exhausted all of his skills and power. His figure became even much faster and more violent, making Li Qingshan unable to block. His fists fell on Li Qingshan’s body like unceasing raindrops.
In the eyes of observers, it was Sick Yellow Tiger who was pressuring Li Qingshan and occupied the upper hand.
But the two men’s feelings were each different. Li Qingshan merely felt almost as if Sick Yellow Tiger’s movements had become slower, becoming not so much unpredictable anymore. Even if the fists landed on his body, it was a little pain at most and he might as well not pay attention to them. He resembled a reef in the middle of a tempest under this blind assault, standing mighty and motionless.
Meanwhile, Sick Yellow Tiger became more astonished the longer he fought. Li Qingshan’s speed, reaction, and strength were all a lot stronger than the last time they exchanged hands. It was simply like it was another person. He already couldn’t easily hit Li Qingshan’s vital spots, but hitting other places was also completely useless.
In the middle of the battle, Li Qingshan’s attacks became all the more sophisticated. From time to time he fired out one or two extremely exquisite punches, making him fall into danger, and it was only thanks to his experience from facing enemies for many years that he could dispel it. The violence of the wind blown up by Li Qingshan’s fists told him that he would be finished as long as he ate a single one. The distance between the two neared at flying speed.
So such a strange scene emerged. One man kept getting hit while his momentum became more victorious as the fight went on, while another man didn’t suffer the slightest harm but his momentum instead became weaker and weaker.
Sick Yellow Tiger’s forehead began to sweat. When he started feeling tired, Li Qingshan still had the same expression and his heart beat at the same speed.
Bulls were originally animals with great endurance, and the higher the cultivation, the more the difference between martial arts and supernatural skills would manifest itself.
Sick Yellow Tiger suddenly opened the distance with a leap and shouted: “Stop!”