Ancient Strengthening Technique

 
 

Ancient Strengthening Technique Chapter 974-976


AST 974 – The Journey of A Thousand Li Begins With One Step, Breaking Out of The Cocoon

Qing Ming grabbed the claws and exerted his strength. Nonetheless, the claws didn't even budge an inch. A two foot-long Skywolf Claw was indeed quite heavy.

"So heavy. That's not fun." He clapped his hands and didn't spare the Skywolf Claw another glance.

Qing Shui knew that he wouldn't be able to do his morning practice today and decided to let his two sons start practicing the Back Connecting Fist technique in the morning while his two lasses would be practicing the Taichi Fists technique.

He currently had no idea if the two little lasses would enjoy practicing it but Qing Yin seemed to be very interested in the Taichi Fists technique. She had a gentle and quiet personality and was a particularly meek little lass. Most importantly, she was very intelligent. Hence, Qing Shui had already made up his mind since the beginning.

He would let her cultivate solely the Taichi Fists technique, nothing else.

Qing Yin seemed to be unusually fond of the Taichi Fists technique. Her eyes shone especially brightly after hearing Qing Shui mentioned the words using the weak to defeat the strong, to cleverly accomplish a great task with little effort and to let the opponent strike first and bring the opponent down when the opportunity arises. Qing Shui also gave a round of demonstration on the spot. She watched Qing Shui's silhouette, which was deeply embedded in her mind.

While Qing Yin liked the Taichi Fists technique, Qing Zun and Qing Ming were still more interested in the Tiger Form and the Back Connecting Fist. Qing Ming's eyes sparkled when he saw the Skywolf Claws that Qing Shui had given to Mingyue Gelou as a gift earlier.

"Daddy, can you make me a pair of claws too? A smaller and lighter one, so I can play with it!" Qing Ming blinked his bright eyes at Qing Shui.

This little guy didn't like swords or spears. He was only interested in claws, spikes, daggers, slingshots, and bows and arrows. These weapons were good for ambushes. Qing Shui couldn't help but remember Canghai Mingyue's words again. 'Gelou is someone with virtue and dignity. Who do you think Ming'er takes after…….?'

He saw a ferocious eagle in the sky. But of course, to Qing Shui, it was no different to a normal bird. He picked up Qing'er in his arms. "Watch closely, my son."

Qing Shui picked up a stone as soon as he finished his sentence and launched the stone by flicking his fingers. The stone in his hand immediately flew in a curve across the sky rapidly and hit the eagle. With a miserable shriek, the eagle fell out of the sky, flapping its wings. However, it was not dead.

Qing Shui didn't want to expose a young child to such a cruel scene. After all, Qing Ming was still too young. This was his first time witnessing an eagle in the sky being hit by a stone. Many people could hit a flying bird in the sky. However, if it was a flying beast with Xiantian strength in the sky, only a small amount of people could hit their target with hidden weapon techniques since their targets were flying in the sky.

"Daddy, you're too amazing! I've made my decision. I don't want a bow anymore. Can you teach me this?" Qing Ming's face was full of hope.

"You are my son. If you want to learn something, I'll definitely be more than happy to teach you. But learning this is very difficult. If you can't endure the hardship, then it is better than you don't learn this. I will teach you something else." Qing Shui laughed at the little fellow in his arms.

"No. I want to learn this. I will work hard." Qing Ming stubbornly insisted on learning this.

"Fine then. Learning this will require stamina first. Hence, you will need to cultivate the Back Connecting Fist technique and some other fundamentals diligently every day. You will only be able to launch the stone further and harder if you have stamina. After that, you will also have to practice another set of fist techniques that will allow your hands to be more nimble so that you will have better accuracy." Qing Shui explained to Qing Ming in the simplest way.

The intelligence of children in the World of the Nine Continents would develop at an early age. Qing Shui had also started his cultivation when he was five years old back then. He started off by asking Qing Ming to cultivate the Solitary Rapid Fist. Of course, Qing Zun would also be learning it. However, Qing Shui had decided that he'd be focusing on the 'Basic Sword Technique' as his main means of cultivation. The Solitary Rapid Fist had a very big effect. The biggest effect was enhancing the flexibility of the cultivator's hands.

The younger the child, the more effective the Solitary Rapid Fist would be. This was also why Qing Shui no longer let the few girls cultivate it. Qing Shui had instead told them to spare some time on researching formations everyday now instead.

To be exact, everyone was researching formations except for these few little fellows. He figured that they could wait for another few more years. However, the rest still had to research it. While they were at it, they'd coordinate with each other every day to practice the Five Elements Minor Formation for a short while.

If they were going to raise the Qing Clan's strength, then formations were definitely something that should not be neglected. Other than that, it'd be the Nine Palace Steps, and it should be picked up from a young age. The next generation was indeed setting out on a completely different level compared to everyone else.

This morning practice was only a starting point. He wanted them to study formations and Nine Palace Steps for a while during the daytime, while acting on the next step of his plan. Qing Shui, was currently setting up many Spirit Gathering Formations in the backyard and other places.

In addition to medicinal pills that could enhance the cultivation speed and the Spirit Gathering Formations, there were also Tiger Vitality Pills, Constitution Nurturing Pills, Rainbow Trout Fish, Plum Blossom Wine, Vermillion Fruit Wine and some other things. So with him around in the future, their strength should be able to increase a lot faster.

Qing Shui had taught the ladies how to make a few types of soups, and also put in quite a lot of fish and prawns into the huge pond in their residence. By now, no one was really too surprised by all of these things. They pretty much knew that Qing Shui had a lot of treasures with him.

Since Qing Shui had made the plan, naturally he would also monitor it. But the so-called monitoring meant that he would only guide or briefly assess them. The children's cultivations also depended on him.

After breakfast, Qing Shui held Qing Yu in his arms and made his way to Cang Wuya's place. Fei Wuji was already married with a child, a son who was older than Qing Yu.

"Is everything going well?" The smile on Cang Wuya's face was especially benevolent after he saw Qing Shui.

"Everything is going well!" Qing Shui smiled as he entered the room with Cang Wuya. This old man had always been like family since long ago. He was someone like a grandfather to Qing Shui and could be considered as Qing Shui's senior.

"Is Martial Uncle Fei still well?" Qing Shui enquired with a smile.

"Yes he is. The Old Ancestor should be resting in peace now. Grudges of the past have been settled. Wuji is also married and has built a family of his own." Cang Wuya chuckled. He seemed to be very happy.

Qing Shui was also smiling, but he knew that Cang Wuya would miss his son. It was fair to say that Fei Wuji was Cang Wuya's son and Canghai Mingyue was Cang Wuya's granddaughter now.

Qing Shui earnestly invited Cang Wuya to move to the Qing Residence if he had nothing else to do. However, Cang Wuya smilingly told him that he'd be coming over to stay for a period of time some time later. After taking his leave from Cang Wuya's place, he went off to find Elder Ge.

Currently, Elder Ge was the one responsible for taking care of everything in the Heavenly Palace.

Elder Ge enjoyed drinking, so Qing Shui had brought quite a lot of good wine for this visit. For someone like him who possessed the Realm of Violet Jade Immortal, he could have all the good wines he wanted in the world. Over his meeting with Elder Ge this time, he had given some cultivation techniques to the Heavenly Palace Sect.

The Heavenly Palace was nominally the most powerful sect in the Greencloud Continent. Despite this, it couldn't match up with some clans in the other continents. The disparity between them was simply too great. But why was it able to survive in the Greencloud Continent?

Qing Shui guessed that this had an intimate relation to the Greencloud Continent. The Greencloud Continent could be considered the poorest among all the continents. It was also the continent with the thinnest amount of spiritual qi. There should've been someone who had thought of coming here and dominating the continent. Many were willing to be the head of a dog rather than the tail of a lion, but then they also knew that the outstanding would usually bear the brunt of attacks. So they'd ask around for the most influential power of the region first at every place they stopped by. This was because being the most outstanding one wouldn't necessarily be a good thing. This should be one of the indispensable conditions for Heavenly Palace's survival.

Although having the strong and weak was a very normal phenomenon, the disparity between this Greencloud Continent and the other continents was simply great to the point that it was astonishing.

He stayed there half a day. Their discussion in the Heavenly Palace was accompanied by wine. Although the population in the Heavenly Palace had been reduced by more than 90% compared to before, their strength had instead become more powerful than before and was ever increasing every day. Their strength was simply too weak in the past. After Qing Shui took over the Heavenly Palace, he left some medicinal pills and some other things, and also implemented an incentive system. In each of the Heavenly Palace's nine halls, other than the original Elder Custodians, a few positions for Guardian were designated for the top ten disciples among the younger generation, according to their strength. They'd receive generous rewards as long as they got ranked in competitions. This could motivate them to greatly improve their strength.

However, enhancing the strength of a great sect was a very difficult task. It was not something that was achievable within a short period of time but rather over a few decades or even centuries. Fortunately, Qing Shui had his own methods which didn't require such a long time. Even so, it'd still take a decade or even two to three decades.

The few women by Qing Shui's side were from the Misty Hall and they could also be considered Peak Martial Saints. Currently, the Misty Hall was the strongest among the Nine Palace's nine halls……

……….

By the time he returned to the Qing Residence, it was already almost late in the afternoon. The children still had to learn how to read. The Qing Clan had scholars that were specialized in teaching the children, but they didn't necessarily know martial arts. There were some scholars that were also powerful in martial arts, but the ones in the Qing Clan didn't really know any martial arts.

When Qing Shui settled down, he thought of that woman from the Skysword Sect again, Zhu Qing. Actually, when he returned, he had left out one woman from his story to them. Yun Duan. It wasn't like he wanted to hide anything. Then there was also Zhu Qing. No one in his family knew about her. There shouldn't be anyone who knew about her.

He was thinking that it was about time to ask her to return here. Since he was going to stay for a period of time in the Qing Residence, he should ask her to come gather with them and at the same time, announce her status to the family.

Returning this time didn't require a lot of time. On the contrary, it was faster compared to before. But Qing Shui still decided to stay over a few days, or a little longer. Maybe he'd wait until Qingqing had settled her things or returned after she got married.

While he was at it, he'd help the Skysword Sect. Despite everything, he used to be part of the Skysword Sect and he owed some favors to Baili Jingwei. The Skysword Sect was Baili Jingwei's, so he should help him so that he could witness the expansion of the Skysword Sect.

The subsequent three days were very crucial. His plans were progressively being carried out. Cultivation was also added in little by little to slowly blend it in. The Nine Palace Steps was very important. When they were free, they'd study formations.

Someone from the Guo Clan came after two days. It was Guo Polu and the Guo Clan's head. Many from the Qing Clan also joined in. The atmosphere was quite lively and very easy going. A date was very quickly set. The people from Guo Clan didn't want to leave Yan City but Guo Polu wished to stay in the Continent's Capital, specifically in the Qing Residence.

The Qing Clan naturally happily agreed to it. In the end, it was decided that the wedding banquet would be held at the Guo Residence. Although the Guo Clan was fine with anywhere, Qing Shui still decided to hold it at the Guo Residence in the end since it was the Guo Clan taking a wife.

This decision made the Guo Clan feel extremely grateful, because this way they would have the honor. Otherwise, it would seem as if their people were marrying into the wife's clan. Although some said that the Guo Clan was playing up to the influentials, the people from Yan City didn't think that way. Many knew that that Guo Polu was marrying that young miss from the Yan Clan who sold tea leaves on the big street, and they were sighing in amazement that a kind soul would indeed be rewarded fruitfully.

The big day was set as half a month later. The Guo Clan returned first to make preparations and the Qing Clan also returned soon after. Qing Shui was very happy and very satisfied with the Guo Clan's decision. If Guo Polu and Qingqing could stay in the Continent's Capital, the Qing Clan couldn't be better. Of course, Qing Shui wouldn't make this unfair for the Guo Clan. After all, they'd be future in-laws. The Guo Clan only had one heir in each generation, such a clan was very rare in the World of the Nine Continents.

Humans were very selfish creatures. Qing Shui didn't only have one woman, but he was really fond of the fact that Qingqing's man had her only. This was why Guo Polu was the best man for her. Most importantly, he and Qingqing were deeply in love.

Just like how Qing Shui thought that Duanmu Lingshuang marrying to Hu Yanlin was a very good thing. Regardless of the relationship between him and Lady Duanmu, he'd still work hard. When that time comes, Duanmu Lingshuang would be part of his family too…….

Fortunately, the lifespan of people on the World of the Nine Continents was long and they could also retain their youthfulness longer. Otherwise, Qing Shui wouldn't know if he could afford to wait.


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AST 975 – General Country, General Inn, Zu Yanglong

After everything was settled, the close members of Qing Clan decided that they would attend the wedding ceremony together. They wanted everyone to know that Qingqing was an important family member and that her wedding matters were not to be taken lightly. In any case, the Qing Clan felt that they owed Qingqing a great deal. If not for Qing Shui, her fate would be unknown.

When Qingqing was at the Yan Clan back then, she knew that she had a mother, and she desperately wanted her mother to come and bring her away from her miserable life. At that time, she didn't know she had a little brother. In the end, it was her little brother who had turned her life around, giving her a life worth living in this world.

After all these years, Qing Shui had never really forgiven the Yan Clan for what they did to his family. Even though he had allowed the relatives from his father's side to live, he had never visited them since then. Sparing their lives was an act of duty and respect for his father, otherwise, they would have been killed along with the other members of Yan Clan.

Qing Shui was actually heartbroken knowing that his father had died. He felt that way because of his mother, who had waited an extended amount of years in hopes that her husband would return to her side one day.

At this particular moment, Qing Shui went sightseeing and strolling at the neighboring mountains with Qingqing. He was dragged along by his sister, so he had no idea what she had in store for him. Nevertheless, whatever she decided to do, Qing Shui would do his best to meet her expectations.

"Qing Shui, do you think the members of Yan Clan will attend the ceremony?" Qingqing turned to ask Qing Shui after walking a distance into the mountains.

"Maybe. Sis, do you not want them to come? If you don't want them to, then I will stop them from coming to the wedding." Qing Shui said after a brief pause.

"It's fine. We've stopped caring for them after we left the Yan City. But you know, grandfather and the others had no choice back then." Qingqing sighed.

"I don't care if they had a choice or not. If they could treat you like that back then, whatever their reasons were, it is just excuses. Having no relatives is better than having relatives like that. I really wish I could kill them off when I had the chance to." Qing Shui became furious the more he thought about the Yan Clan.

He didn't want to bring up this topic, but he couldn't stand it anymore. His mother and Qingqing were his close family, including the other members of the Qing Clan. As for the Yan Clan, they were nothing more than strangers in the passing street. He had hoped that his father would be there, but he hadn't expected that he would leave this world before he could have the chance to meet him face to face.

While listening closely to Qing Shui's words, Qingqing was happy to realize that she was loved and cared for by her close family. Her face lit up as she felt a sense of contentment in her heart. She looked at Qing Shui with a cheerful expression and said, "I am so lucky to have a little brother like you."

"Why the sudden sentimental words? We are siblings, linked together by blood. That will never change no matter where we are." Qing Shui let out a soft laugh.

"Nothing, I just feel really happy, that's all."

"Are you happy because you are going to be a bride soon?" Qing Shui chuckled teasingly.

"You brat. Don't tease me like that." Qingqing followed up quickly as she became embarrassed by his words.

"Alright, fine. I will stop. Sis, Guo Polu is a great person, at least better than me, in my opinion."

………

The next day, the members of the Qing Clan flew towards the Yan Jiang Country in succession. The number of flying mounts were adequate, so the number of people going to the Yan City wasn't an issue. The items that were made to block against the force of the wind proved to be useful again. This time, the children were using them as they mounted the flying beasts on a high altitude journey.

Their schedule for this journey was strictly restricted to traveling during the daytime and resting during the night time. They would stop by cities for pit stops, and if they could stay away from camping in the wilderness, they would do just that. Encountering demonic beasts in the wild was a trivial issue for the adults, but they were more concerned that the children. They might be startled should they encounter one during their sleep.

The traveling group consisted of at least 30 people, including eight children. To break it down, this group consisted of Qing Shui's children, Qing Zi's children, Luan Luan, Yuchang, and the older members of the Qing Clan traveling in this journey to Yan Jiang Country.

General Country!

They had finally reached the capital city of the General Country!

Even though Qing Shui hadn't spent a lot of time in the Greencloud Continent, he could still remember most of the country names among the 81 countries in the continent. General Country was one of them. He could clearly remember it because the Yan Jiang country wasn't far away from his home, and the name was simple to memorize.

Dusk was approaching, and Qing Shui decided to find an inn for the whole family to stay the night. The inn he chose had a simple name that was easy to remember as well.

General Inn!

"Mingyue, how did the name 'General Country' come by?" Qing Shui stood in front of the inn and asked Canghai Mingyue with a smile.

"According to the legends, the legacy of the General Country had been passed down from a long time ago, making it the oldest and the most ancient country in the Greencloud Continent. A long time ago, the sect clans weren't the most powerful in the World of the Nine Continents. The Dynasty Emperor held the absolute power in the world, and the General Country was said to be the most powerful military stronghold back then. After all these years, General Country was still the most well-preserved area in the continent. The other countries had gone through tremendous changes and even had their names modified several times." Canghai Mingyue explained as she glanced towards the ancient structure of the General Inn.

The power ranking of the General Country in the Greencloud Continent was only mediocre at best. This country had been keeping a low profile in all aspects and affairs. There were rarely rumors about the General Country, which piqued Qing Shui's curiosity more than anything else.

Based on the name of the inn alone, this must be an inn catered to the authorities and officials in the General Country a long time ago. When the waitresses saw a group of 30 people ranging from children to elders entering the inn, they knew that they were a family, presumably from a wealthy clan based on their extravagant clothings and distinguished aura.

Bringing an entire family for a migration was considered normal in the World of the Nine Continents. Most people would only do that if they could not survive in their previous home, or they were planning to move from a smaller city to a bigger place to live. In most cases, a big family would have guards to keep them safe from harm, but the Qing Clan had none, making them seemed like a bunch of castaways instead. This was despite the luxurious clothing on every member of the Qing Clan. After all, poor people could still afford to dress flashy in order to garner positive reactions from the public.

Those with a bit of power and wealth could hire hundreds and thousands of bodyguards, with the minimum amount being ten. Qing Shui's group had children and women, so most people would feel anxious when they saw a large family without guards whatsoever.

Of course, Qing Shui knew that very well. He turned to look at the ladies beside him. They were all notably attractive, which could only mean trouble to the family. It would be more strange if the public was devoid of restless behavior after seeing a couple of alluring women traveling to an unfamiliar place like this.

Evil forces of supremacy would always lurk about in every corner of the continent. The stronger these forces were, the more hedonic they would become. These people had a strong pillar of support in other parts of the country who would stop at nothing to cause evil and destruction to others without any reason. Some people could afford to act recklessly for the rest of their lives while living in the shadows of those who would protect them.

Qing Shui had heard of such things in his past life before. Because of money and power, these evildoers could attack other people in the daylight, took liberty of married women and even perform indecent acts on those innocent women without any consequences……

Zu Yanglong was drinking wine with three other young men in the General Inn. He was a profligate son from part of the younger generation in the General Country who held the power of the General Manor in his hands. Because of this, his life was easy. He had everything he wanted – riches, people, and women. If he wanted a woman, regardless of her marital status, he would always acquire them as his possession without fail. Many people called him a demon behind his back because of these shameless acts.

His grandfather was the third master of the General Manor. No one would dare provoke the General Manor in the General Country because of their influence. Even if one were to be bullied by the members of the General Manor, they would not make a peep about it. Should they curse in front of Zu Yanglong even in the slightest, they would be eliminated immediately. And because of this reason, he was also called as a demon. Of course, no one would be foolish enough to call him that in his presence.

They were many people in the world, so even if Zu Yanglong were to bully one random person each day, he had only just touched the tip of the iceberg. He had never once caused any real trouble to his clan either. However, in these past few days, he had been gloomy because he could not get an erection from the women he had met a few days ago. The physicians said that he had over-exhausted himself, and he needed rest….. which was all the more to be worried about. Zu Yanglong called over his usual immoral friends to the General Inn in hopes of drinking his problem away.

The General Inn was the General Manor's main property. Even though this wasn't the Zu Clan's industrial business, they were allowed to stay and dine here for free. At that moment, a large group of people came in from the entrance door. There were men and women in the group, as well as elders and children.

When Zu Yanglong saw an alluring woman in a violet dress holding a delicate girl in her arms, he began to feel restless in his heart. His eyes lit up further when he saw a few more women following behind as they walked closely within the group.

"Young master Zu, this is the first time I've seen so many exquisite women in my life. The ones in the past were nothing compared to the ones I'm seeing now." A slender young man with a hooked nose spoke out to his master.

"Young master Zu, these people don't look like they are from this country. They must be a family, so I think we should be careful with our plans," said another young man who looked like a frail scholar in a soft voice.

"Regardless, no one can evade my grasp once they have entered the General Country. I will regret it for the rest of my life if I let them go freely just like that." Zu Yanglong revealed a sinister smile as he said with a playful tone.

"Tongliang, go to the kitchen. You should know what to do. Use all of those medicinal powders if you can." Zu Yanglong gulped down a cup of wine happily as soon as he finished commanding his subordinates.

The group that had passed by them were Qing Shui and his family members. When he noticed the attention he had garnered from those men, he shrugged them off. His spiritual sense was more acute as ever, and he didn't sense anything that could prove a great threat to him and his family.

He noticed them on the third floor before proceeding towards the fourth floor. Each floor had been partitioned into smaller sections that could be booked with other sections for a large group of people. Qing Shui took the left side of the room that consisted of roughly 30 subsections, which was more than enough to fit his family of 30 inside.

After settling the matters of their rooms, they went to the dining table outside to have a meal. Their rooms were too small to adequately have a family meal. There were halls outside their rooms, but they were too small for fit everyone for a place to eat. However, there was just enough space for them to sit and chat idly.

"Send in your best dishes. If we need some more, please send some over again." Qing Shui made a large order when he saw a few customers dining in the area. Since they were already in this new country, they decided to try some local delicacies and enjoy their meal.

The waitress took their order and went downstairs. Everyone chatted in the meantime as they waited for the dishes to be served.

'Daddy, when are going to reach to Yan Jiang City?" Qing Ying sat besides her father and asked softly.

"We will reach there the day after tomorrow. Why, are you feeling ill?" Qing Shui lowered his head and asked Qing Ying gently. Their journey had been at a moderate speed because they had children traveling with them.

"No, I'm just asking. I feel that we have traveled quite far from home."

Qing Shui smiled and rubbed Qing Ying's head. This was her first journey away from home, and she seemed quite excited about it.

Within a few moments, dozens of waitresses climbed up in succession, each holding two dishes. The dishes were placed on a tray covered in yellow silk. The waitresses proceeded to place the dishes in the center of the table. Steam wafted from the dishes, and a delicious aroma traveled quickly to their noses.

Even though Qing Shui thought that these dishes were decent, half of the dishes consisted of lean meat, and the other half were vegetarian cuisines. Regardless of the color and flavors of the dishes, they all looked appetizing. One look at the dishes and the family members could not help but salivate with hunger.

Suddenly, Qing Shui furrowed his brows but quickly eased his nerves after that. The children were all salivating despite the delicious dishes he had made for them back at home. However, any kind of dishes worth salivating would instantly become the children's favorite, regardless of the food or taste.

Qing Shui quickly picked up a portion of the dishes and placed them into his children's bowls. After that, he called everyone to start eating while the dishes were still warm. Some of the family members immediately frowned before they took their first bite. They only started eating after they took a glance at Qing Shui, who seemed calm and undisturbed by the food.

Qing Shui knew that someone had contaminated their food with sleeping drugs that would only show its effectiveness after one hour. Their bodies would not be harmed, but they would be put to sleep for at least two days. The drugs were flavorless and colorless, but that wasn't enough to fool Qing Shui's spiritual sense from detecting those substances in the dishes.

However, he wasn't afraid of the drug's effects, so he ate his food like everything was normal. He wanted to know what kind of person would do such a reckless thing to his family. If they were foolish enough to do such things, they should prepare for the consequence that he had planned for them.

Of course, he was furious, but he didn't show it on his face. The drugs were not poisonous, which meant that the perpetrators had been targeting the ladies all along. The more he thought about the shameless acts of the perpetrators, the more his heart was fueled with an intense flame of fury.


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AST 976 – Third Master Zu – Zu Sui, A Kick Of Death

Before they knew it, another round of dishes was served. The members of the Qing Clan chowed down the food happily despite some realizing that there was a weird substance in the dishes. The drug's effect was indeed strong, but it could cause no real harm to their bodies. However, some of them could not even endure the effect of the drugs after they had taken a few bites of the food.

Despite the effects of the drug, it would take a bit longer for the drug to take its full effect. It would probably take affect after they had finished their meal. Even if they had been inflicted with the sleeping drug, Qing Shui had the capability to remove the drug in their systems. The worst thing that could happen to them was being put to sleep the whole night before waking up in the morning.

The food Qing Shui ate traveled down to his stomach and the drug effect was burnt off immediately. The meltdown of the poison was done automatically as his body was practically immune to any kind of poison. Moreover, his Nature Energy was quite effective in eradicating the sleeping effect of such an unorthodox poison almost immediately after the drug entered his system.

They took quite a long time to finish their meal since it was a large group having a meal together. The sky at that moment was still blue as well. Everyone took their time to eat and chat with each other. Some preferred to listen while chowing down their food, and some who would rather play with the children than chat with the others.

Time passed by slowly, and Qing Yu was the first to fall asleep. No one noticed anything wrong about him, because children were prone to sleep earlier than adults. However, when all of the children eventually fell asleep, the others realized there was something amiss about the current situation.

After a while, the others began to feel dizzy as they looked at each other in confusion. They finally realized that there was something wrong with the dishes before they turned to Qing Shui with a shocked expression. Qing Shui nodded his head with a smile, but shook his head afterwards without saying a word.

Then at that moment, footsteps could be heard trampling up the stairs. A number of young men were already at the staircase, and Qing Shui immediately knew that they were the perpetrators behind the sleeping drugs. By this time, almost half the members of Qing Clan had already succumbed to the drug's effect.

Qing Shui picked up Qing Yu quickly, while the other children were already asleep on the high-legged chairs that were made of beast leather. The chairs were comfortable enough, so Qing Shui decided to let them sleep on the chairs for now.

"Hahaha!" The leader of the young men burst out in laughter. His gaze was fixed on the ladies, who remained seated on their chairs due to their inability to stand up straight.

Yiye Jiange, Canghai Mingyue, and Di Qing felt uncomfortable, but were able to withstand the drug's effect. Despite being fine, they remained seated and went along with the flow of the current situation. They didn’t move a muscle, nor did they make a sound.

"Who are you?" Qing Shui frowned as he looked at the despicable young man in front of him.

"You don’t have to know who we are. Who you are is bound to be more interesting." The young man looked at Qing Shui before turning his head to look at the other members of the Qing Clan. His smile became more sinister as he observed the others in the room.

"You’re the ones who drugged the dishes?" Qing Shui already knew the truth, but insisted on asking them to get a bit of information.

"How do you feel now? Tell me, where are you from, and what do you plan on doing in the General Country?" the young man maintained a smile as he asked this question with a calm attitude.

"I advise you to hand over the antidote now. You don’t want to mess with us." Qing Shui stood up and swayed for a bit before sitting down and before he demanded angrily at the smiling young man.

"Haha, can’t mess with you? Regardless of who you are, as long as you’re in the General Country, you have to follow our rules now. There’s no one that I, Zu Yanglong, cannot destroy. These women you have there are quite exquisite. Even if I die from ravaging them tonight, I will welcome death with open arms. Your threats are useless to me. Even if you have the support of an almighty emperor, it’s useless," Zu Yanglong said excitingly as he clenched his teeth with exaggerated force.

"Zu Yanglong? We’re from the Continent’s Capital. Aren’t you afraid that I will destroy your clan if you make any reckless moves against us?" Qing Shui didn’t care if the Zu Clan had the support of an aristocratic clan or a prestigious sect, he used all his might to rage his anger at the Zu Yanglong. If he had to act like he was inflicted with the sleeping drug, he must put an effort to pretend like he was affected. But he didn’t expect to see this kind of monster that the young man had become – he had an insatiable hunger for lust and women.

"Continent’s Capital? Haha, what power is there in the Continent’s Capital? They will still be under the grasp of my General Manor even if they were to come to this country to look for trouble. And here I thought you were some kind of hidden aristocratic clan. You’re just taking the Continent’s Capital as a disguise to roam around foreign countries," Zu Yanglong said with confidence as if he was determined that Qing Shui could not pose a threat to him or his General Manor.

Zu Yanglong was more than relieved to discover that Qing Shui and his family hailed from the Greencloud Continent’s capital. Qing Shui knew that Zu Yanglong would let down his guard if he mentioned he was from the Continent's Capital. He didn’t have any good feelings from this despicable man at all, and he wasn’t a real threat to Qing Shui since he was just a martial cultivator with the strength of an Early Martial Saint.

A profligate son with the power of an Early Martial Saint in such a young generation should be no more than a few years older than Qing Shui himself. Qing Shui was more curious about his alliances, and what kind of power they possessed.

In any case, Qing Shui now understood why there had never been a group from the other continents which would attempt a coup and conquer the Greencloud Continent. The reason was quite profound because there were people of undeniable power hidden within the countries in a seemingly weak continent. They would keep a low profile most of the time, but they would not hold back their power should the situation require them to show their strength.

He also understood the complexity of the General Country, and to an extent, the Greencloud Continent as well. However, he was still baffled how he would end up for a trivial matter like this with the Qing Clan. Regardless, it didn’t matter anymore. Qing Shui had decided to retaliate no matter what forces they were. He had an exceptional martial skills, and most importantly, he had the Marrow Nibbling Golden Silkworm in the Blood Essence Pool situated in his Central Palace. The silkworm had grown stronger despite not growing any larger. The golden gleam from the silkworm was more magnificent and animated than before. In addition to that, Qing Shui had also developed a deeper telepathic communication with the silkworm, forming a profounding bond between himself and the ferocious creature.

"Zu Yanglong, there’s still a chance for you to stop whatever you’re doing. Hand over the antidote and you’ll get a chance to live. I won’t ask you to be responsible for today’s incident either," Qing Shui shouted while 'struggling' to stand up on his feet.

"No need to shout. No one will intervene when I'm dealing with you guys in the General Country. If you want to blame someone, blame those women besides you. They are too beautiful, and you don't deserve to have them for yourself. Women are a source of trouble, you know. You should have realized that this day would come one day." Zu Yanglong approached Yiye Jiange who was the closest to him. If he could conquer a celestial-like woman like her, then even if he were to die soon, it was all worth it.

"Sure, women are the source of trouble….. But you are the one seeking your own demise!" In the middle of his speech, he suddenly felt restless and dropped his act immediately.

Qing Shui returned to his normal self and shot a few Coldsteel Needles towards the perpetrators' dantian areas.

Pu pu…..

A soft yet distinct sound rang out, like plastic abruptly exploded into pieces. Their dantian areas were pierced in an instant, causing the pitiful men to shriek in excrutiating pain. Having their dantians destroyed meant that their cultivations had been crippled as well. No one could endure such an excruciating pain physically nor mentally.

"Shout again and I will make you disappear right away." Qing Shui said calmly.

Everyone else sat down except for a few children. Qing Shui had calculated his time perfectly with the Violet Jade Pendant, which wasn't just an accessory, but could notably be used to dispel poison, albeit not instantly for a colorless and odorless drug like the one they had just consumed. The drug effects would wear off in about the time needed to burn an incense stick.

In the meantime, Qing Shui allowed the others to return to their rooms to rest up first.

Zu Yanglong and his friends clenched their teeth and remained silent. One of them even bit his sleeves tightly, drenching it in a pool of cold sweat. His face was pale and the corners of his mouth were dripping with a stream of fresh blood.

Today would not end well for them, and there was no way that Qing Shui would let them go easily. Qing Shui faced Zu Yanglong, stared him in the eyes and said, 'Speak, who are you people. It's time you should tell us by now!"

"We are members of the General Manor." Zu Yanglong said reluctantly without an ounce of foul language. He had a feeling that Qing Shui would kill them without a moment’s notice should they try to provoke him any further.

Qing Shui laughed when he saw the sudden change in Zu Yanglong expression. This reckless man feared death more than anyone else in this room. However, when Zu Yanglong mentioned the General Manor, Qing Shui froze for a while before turning his head towards the three women beside him – Yiye Jiange, Canghai Mingyue, and Di Qing.

"General Manor is the main command of the General Country. It is said that they are an ancient clan passed down from a great legacy, but they had been maintaining a low profile so no other details are known. In any case, they have existed for a long time in this country." Canghai Mingyue gathered her thoughts before explaining what she knew about the General Manor to Qing Shui.

"Mingyue, what do you think about killing them and mutilating their corpses afterwards?" asked Qing Shui as he turned to Canghai Mingyue beside him.

"These men are indeed despicable. But killing them that way is a bit too filthy in my book," Di Qing spoke out instead.

"So are we going to let them go freely?" Qing Shui said with a frown.

"How about we break their arms and legs, and throw them out from this floor?" Di Qing said as she looked at Qing Shui with a serious expression.

"Well said, Qing 'er. I was thinking of the same idea as well."

"Don't kill me, I will give you anything. Please let us go." Zu Yanglong pleaded for mercy in a horrified state.

The others followed and pleaded in loud voices.

At this point, they believed that Qing Shui was definitely capable of killing them without mercy. Regardless of whether the General Manor could win against these people from the Continent's Capital, their fate was now in the hands of the young man in front of them.

Qing Shui's ears twitched for a moment before he turned his head to the stairs with a smile. A series of loud footsteps became increasingly audible, followed by dozens of men rushing towards him. The leader of the incoming group was an old man clad in violet robes. He had a full head of white hair and bushy eyebrows above his bulging eyes, with a broad nose protruding from his face. Beside the old man were a few elders and some middle-aged men who were likely the subordinates of the old leader.

"Grandfather, save me!"

When Zu Yanglong saw the old leader, he pleaded for help desperately. He was just laying beside Qing Shui, unable to move his muscles freely. His hair was in a ruffled mess, and his face was as pale as a white sheet of paper. In contrast to his pale face, a streak of blood could be seen dripping from the corners of his mouth. Zu Yanglong had a miserable look on his face as he laid still in desperation.

"Who are you, why are you hurting my grandson?" The old man shot a furious look at Qing Shui, emitting an aura of killing intent as he spoke with a menacing and domineering tone.

"Your grandson? Good timing. I don't have to go around and look for you then. Let's consider how we should deal with your grandson today, shall we?" Qing Shui sat down and brushed off the killing intent of the old man.

Zu Sui knew all about his grandson's shameful acts. Without the need to think over the situation, Zu Sui knew that his grandson must have provoked the young man sitting in front of him, and it seemed that it was quite serious this time. Moreover, his grandson was beaten to a pulp in the General Inn, a place situated in the General Country where his power was absolute.

In any case, Zu Sui was furious. No one would dare to disrespect the Third Master Zu in the General Country, so who would have thought that he would be considering the actions needed to be taken against his own grandson? Wasn't the pitiful sight of his grandson enough already?

"What are you planning to do with him?" Zu Sui looked at Qing Shui coldly, slowly dissipating the killing intent he had earlier. The General Manor had never feared anyone, and no one had ever talked to him like that before.

"I have decided to break his arms and legs before throwing him out from this height. What do you think?" Qing Shui cocked his head to look at the old man and said very calmly.

"You are asking for it!"

Suddenly, the old man growled and leaped towards Qing Shui at an unfathomable speed. He aimed for Qing Shui's head and curled his fist in an attempt to strike a death blow. Unfortunately for the old man, his seemingly unfathomable speed was too slow in Qing Shui's eyes.

Qing Shui remained seated while striking a counterattack with an abrupt kick at the old man!

Tiger Tailwhip Kick!

The only thing the old man saw in front of him was an apparition of a meter long tiger claw that rapidly approached. The kick flashed towards him instantaneously and landed on his chest.

Pu!

Ultimately, the old man was killed by that single kick!

To be honest, it was not surprising. The old man was the one who had initiated the fight, so Qing Shui would naturally not hold back when he kicked him in retaliation. The old man's strength was less than two stars, which was unfortunately the strength of an ant when contrasted to Qing Shui's power. The kick was able to destroy the old man's vital organs with a menacing force. If Qing Shui had used his full power, the old man would be shattered to nothing more than a few speckles of dust.

From a Peak Martial Saint to a Martial Emperor, the disparity between their levels was greater than the depths of a natural ravine!


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