Defiant Martial God
Chapter 4: Invitation to the Martial Exam
When Qin Wu opened the door, he saw a few men standing outside. There were two middle-aged men at the forefront—a fat man, and a man with a “八” shaped mustache.
One could tell at first glance that the fat man was someone important because he was wearing a government official’s garment. On the other hand, the man with a “八” shaped mustache was someone that Qin Wu couldn’t be more familiar with. He was called Qin Biao, and was someone that Qin Wu was supposed to refer to as “elder brother.” [1. “兄长” (Xiong Zhang) is another term for “elder brother,” and can also be interpreted as a title of respect for a man who is older, but about the same age]
But toward the Qin Biao who had always regarded him with disdain and despise, and even treated him as nothing more than a cripple, how could Qin Biao deserve to be called elder brother?
Qin Wu directly cupped a fist in his other hand and asked the fat man, “This Sir, did you need Yu’er for something?” Qin Biao who stood beside the fat man didn’t spare him a glance. If others treated him with disdain, he didn’t need to warm his face and lick the other man’s cold butt. [2. “To lick the other man’s cold butt” means to flatter or kiss up to someone.]
“This is Qin Yu’s Martial Examination pre-selection invitation card. You’re going to give it to him. Let’s go.” The fat man didn’t bother saying any more to a cripple like Qin Wu and left immediately after finishing his task.
Qin Biao followed the other man when he left, his voice filled with a trace of disdain as he said, “My Lord, it’s just a pair of father and son cripples. You didn’t need to personally deliver the invitation card to them, after all, it only wastes your precious time, not to mention troubling you to a tiring trip.”
*Sigh* “I can’t do anything about it ah! The city lord made it very clear that I needed to send the invitation card to everybody who passed the qualifying round. Qin Yu ranked in the top 3 for the qualifiers, so I have no choice but to personally come. As for whether or not they go, it’s their business. It’s fine as long as I accomplished my task,” the fat man replied somewhat helplessly.
“Haha! My Lord really works hard! However, I’m already sure that trash wouldn’t dare to attend the martial tournament!”
Hearing such humiliating words as they walked away—especially towards his own family—Qin Wu clenched his fist as a sneer formed on his face. “We won’t dare to go? Then I’ll make sure to come just for you! Hmph!”
Qin Wu held the invitation card and made his way to Qin Yu’s room where Qin Mother was helping Qin Yu drink water. No one apart from Qin Yu himself was aware of what happened in the room while Qin Wu and Qin Mother were elsewhere.
“Yu’er, this is yours.” Qin Wu walked up to his bedside and handed over the invitation card.
“Martial Examination pre-selection invitation card?” Qin Yu opened the invitation card and looked, startled.
Qin Wu thought that Qin Yu wouldn’t remember what the Martial Examination was, so he sat down to patiently explain. “In order to attract more talents to our Qiongxi Country there is a literary and martial exam held every three years. The literary exam is used to attract gifted scholars while the martial exam is used to attract the most elite martial cultivators. Because of the respect towards cultivators in Ancient Wu Continent, very little people paid attention to the literary exam. However, the martial exam always creates a commotion in the city.”
“All martial cultivators aged 20 and under can participate in Qiongxi Country’s martial exam. The exam is split into four stages: the qualifiers, pre-selections, semi-finals, and finals. Amongst those, the qualifiers and the pre-selections are managed by the area’s city master. After every city chooses the top ten most outstanding contestants, they are all brought together to King City for the semi-finals. The final ten will then move on to the finals where they pick out the top rankers in the martial exam.”
“If you can enter the top ten, it means that you can gain the country’s support in fostering you and giving you limitless glory. It also signifies that you have a bright future. The benefits naturally don’t have to be said if you manage to become the top scorer. All this was enough to make any man ambitious. In every battle, the fight for the championship title is always ferocious.”
When Qin Wu explained up to there, his eyes were fixed firmly on to Qin Yu. His eyes were filled with fervent expectations as he said, “Yu’er, you won second place in the qualifiers and as such, you’ve qualified to participate in the pre-selections. Now that your martial arts have returned, Father hopes that you can fight a battle that astonishes everybody. Take back the honor that belongs to you—the honor that belongs to our family—and ruthlessly stomp those who call us father-son pair trash under your feet!”
By the time Qin Wu was finished, his fists were tightly clenched. His expression was filled with anger and his gaze was as sharp as a spear.
“En.” Qin Yu kept on nodding in response. “Father, don’t worry! I’ll make sure to prove myself! In front of me, they’re the real trash!”
“Alright. You truly deserve to be called my son!” Qin Wu was filled with emotion. “Ok, Father has a set of palm techniques that have been handed down in the Qin Family. Learn it and study it well. The more skills you have, the better your odds of success will be.” After Qin Wu finished speaking, he took out a small yellowing booklet and handed it over to Qin Yu.
“Ugh.” Qin Yu felt the yellowed and shabby booklet and didn’t have the heart to refuse it, so he accepted it.
“Alright. Qin Mother, how about we leave and let Yu’er rest up?” After Qin Wu finished speaking, he pulled Qin Mother’s hand and they both left the room.
Qin Yu sat on the bed alone. He stared at the withered yellow booklet in his hands and just wanted to throw it away. Did he lack palm techniques? Just one search through his mind and he knew that there were no palm techniques that he didn’t have.
However, this was something his father gave him, so not learning any of it wouldn’t be good. Plus, wasting Qin Wu’s good intentions would naturally make him feel deeply hurt. Besides, right now, he was somebody from the Qin Family, therefore, knowing at least some of the Qin Family’s cultivation manuals was also necessary.
After thinking it over and over again, Qin Yu opened the dull yellow booklet.
Rushing Thunder Palm: By using one palm strike, a thunder-like rumbling sound will be created, just like rushing thunder. If it was mastered, it could evoke attacks of thunder and lightning. It would also allow the cultivator to kill with one strike, creating a sea of electricity like a net.
Based on the introduction, the technique seemed way too overpowered.
Qin Yu skipped through the introduction and directly flipped to the first page.
Altogether, Rushing Thunder Palm held five forms. The first was “Power like Rushing Thunder;” second, “to Surge like a Gathering Storm;” third, “Pass like Thunder and Move like Wind;” fourth, “Wild Thunder of Heaven’s Prison;” and fifth, “Thunder’s Purgatory.”
Each and every move and form actually held an incredible imposing manner, which aroused Qin Yu’s interest. He immediately flipped to the back only to discover that it was only a piece of the original booklet. There were only three forms of cultivation, and the last two were missing.
Qin Yu began cultivating the first form. As the once terrifying Martial Emperor grade expert, his comprehension abilities naturally didn’t need to be said. Besides, the manual wasn’t even the least bit complicated. He was even doubtful as to whether or not a simple cultivational manuscript could even be able to produce any thunder rumbles.
Eventually, Qin Yu finally finished the first form and concentrated his qi into his palm. He stared ahead, his palm rushing forward to strike the air in front of him.
*Pfff* *Pff* Two soft and smothered sounds echoed—at least, they could be considered as sounds.
Qin Yu was speechless. The noise it produced wasn’t much better than a fart! ‘Rushing Thunder?’ What a joke! There was nothing about its name that was real! It looked like he needed to remodel it.
Originally, he had wanted to continue cultivating the second and third forms. However, he needed to improve the first form first.
It was another sleepless night as he remodeled the Qin Family’s cultivation manual. If it was only making small edits, it would be very easy to fix with Qin Yu’s ability, but having to reform two-thirds of it all was pretty much equivalent to creating his own cultivation manual. The difficulty was something that the average person couldn’t possibly imagine.
*Boom* Somewhere in the spacious and empty countryside, a large thunder-like sound suddenly echoed in the quiet night, startling the sleeping countryside.
A flock of birds flew up one after the other, flying to the treetops as they stared in alarm at the area where the noise came from.
On open land in the darkness, a young man was unceasingly striking fiercely with his palm. Each strike was aimed to kill, creating a sound like the rumbling of thunder.
This young man was Qin Yu. He was worried that if he trained at home, the noises would disturb the rest of the Qin Mother and Father pair so he stealthily ran out here to comprehend the Rushing Thunder Palm.
The skill didn’t let down a man’s hard work and the first form, “Power like Rushing Thunder” could finally be said to have at least some imposing power.
In order to bring out even more of Rushing Thunder Palm’s might, Qin Yu also matched it with a body movement skill—Cloudtrack Phantom.
Cloudtrack Phantom was the body movement skill that had once made him famous. Moving like a demon with steps like an empty cloud. The only thing people would be able to see was a phantom and not a man. It was simply the perfect match for Rushing Thunder Palm.
The next day, Qin Yu hurriedly ran home as the marble white color of the dawn sky made its way into the horizon. He immediately climbed into his bed and slept. He hadn’t slept for long before Qin Wu knocked at his door.
“Yu’er, hurry and get up to go to Ten Thousand Beast Mountain to do training! Other people have already set out and you’re still sleeping?”
Qin Yu was woken up and bewilderedly got out of bed, shaking his head. “Training at Ten Thousand Beast Mountain?”
Training [3. The text originally says, “历练,” which translates to experience. For the sake of English and helping our readers understand, we changed it to “training.”] was done to improve a person’s strength and combat experience as the Martial Examination’s final preparation for the pre-selections.
There was still ten days before the pre-selections and everyone who had received the invitation card was rushing to prepare.
Everybody was clear that rankings in the qualifiers didn’t mean anything and that there were people who didn’t even use their full strength to fight again at the pre-selections. There were also people who broke through just before the pre-selections and amazed the world with one brilliant battle, overthrowing and crushing those above them one after the other.
Therefore, before the pre-selections, every person who received the invitation card would spare no effort to improve their strength. The fastest way to improve their strength in a short amount of time was training by going through trials of blood and fire as they refined themselves.
The best area in Luosang City for training was Ten Thousand Beast Mountain, west of a hundred miles. There, magical beasts were rampaging everywhere and the mountain was filled with both danger and opportunities.
The Qin Family regarded the Martial Examination with utmost importance and in order to allow their younger generation to achieve the best results in the pre-selections, they organized training at Ten Thousand Beast Mountain for everyone in the younger generation who got invitation cards. The Qin Family also dispatched one of the Seven Great Elders—the fifth elder Qin Zhan—to bring the youths to Ten Thousand Beast Mountain followed by Qin Biao as an assistant.
Qin Biao was the father of Qin Zhao, who was the strongest representative of the Qin Family in the Martial Examination. In the qualifiers, he ranked fourth so after Qin Yu was crippled, he had become number one in the Qin Family’s younger generation. The Qin Family also placed high hopes on him too.
This honor originally should’ve gone to Qin Yu, but due to Qin Yu becoming a cripple, the honor was naturally handed to Qin Zhao.
Altogether, the Qin Family had ten youths that made it to the pre-selections and this number showed just how powerful the Qin Family was in Luosang City. If a normal family could have even one or two youths who made it into the pre-selections, it would already be considered good.
A servant quickly finished gathering the youths and found that there were only nine people. They were missing one because Qin Yu was nowhere to be seen.
Qin Biao noticed that the group was missing Qin Yu and he smiled pleasantly as he spoke to Qin Zhan. “Fifth Elder, that cripple doesn’t need to be bothered with. He will only be a burden if we take him along as well, so let’s just go.”
Qin Zhan’s face twitched and his thick dark brows tightened slightly before his mouth released two simple words: “Alright. Go.”
Under Qin Zhan’s lead, the nine youths of the Qin Family—followed by their family lining the streets to see them off—exited the Qin Family’s manor.
In the residence of Qin Yu’s family inside the Qin Family’s side courtyard, Qin Mother gave Qin Yu a neat set of clothes, as well as a robe of ordinary, rough, and gray cloth. This was considered Qin Yu’s best set of clothes. The luxurious robes he had when he was once a talent of the Qin Family were no longer his and were seized when he was driven away from the main courtyard. The Qin Family’s ways were very clear-cut.
“Yu’er, you’re really not going to go with them?” Qin Wu asked as he escorted Qin Yu to the door.
Qin Yu smiled and nodded. “Father, Mother, don’t worry, alright? I’m fine just going alone. If I go with the group, I’m afraid that they’ll just ignore me because I’m a cripple.”
“En, fair enough. Since you’re going by yourself, you have to be more careful. Remember, you absolutely cannot by any means make the same, disastrous mistake as last time.” A trace of concern appeared on Qin Wu’s face. Last time, Qin Yu was plotted against and turned from a genius into a cripple at Ten Thousand Beast Mountain.
Qin Yu’s gaze was firm. “Father, don’t worry. I won’t let the same thing happen a second time.” His body emitted a faint, domineering aura it didn’t have before. This made Qin Wu think that his son had truly matured after surviving that attack.
Qin Mother walked over to Qin Yu with a small bamboo hat. “Yu’er, the sun outside is very strong. Take this and put it on, it can block the sun’s rays. Remember, you have to be careful of everything.” She personally placed it on his head.
“Thank you, Mother. I’m going now. Wait for my good news, ok?”
“En, you must be careful.” Although she was very worried about Qin Yu’s safety, as his mother she knew that walking the border of life and death was something that every martial cultivator on the Ancient Wu Continent had to experience. She was powerless to stop him and could only pray for him in her heart.
Qin Yu silently left the Qin Family from the side courtyard.
Walking around the city, he directly went to one of the weapons shops on the street. Before going to Ten Thousand Beast Mountain, he wanted to find a suitable weapon first.
This weapons shop was called Tie Shou [4. “铁手” (tie shou) literally means “Iron Hand”] Craftsman Shop. Tie Shou was the name of a famous Tool Refiner Master and the shop was very famous in Luosang City.
As a profession, tool refiners were divided into seven levels: Apprentice, Tool Refiner Worker, Tool Refiner Master, Tool Refiner Scholar, Spirit Tool Master, Sacred Tool Master, and Godly Tool Master. Each level was divided into three grades and Tie Shou was Luosang City’s only third-grade Tool Refiner Master.
The former Qin Yu had always longed to get a weapon personally crafted by Tie Shou and had finally gotten his wish fulfilled a year ago. He had personally negotiated with the Qin Family Master and Tie Shou promised to smelt a saber for him. But since he became a cripple, the deal never seemed to have been settled.
Qin Yu only came to try his luck. If by any chance Tie Shou, that old fellow really did finish making the saber, there was no reason not to take it. Even if he didn’t make it, then just buying a weapon in the craftsman shop to use temporarily was also fine.
If it was before, he would never even touch a weapon made from a third-grade Tool Refiner Master, however, it was still better than nothing in his current situation.
When he finally arrived at Tie Shou Craftsman Shop, a shop assistant immediately greeted Qin Yu with a wide smile as soon as he stepped through the door. “Hello customer, may I ask what kind of weapon you’re looking for? Here we have every weapon you can think of.”
On the shop’s front desk, there were all sorts of weapons spread out over it. But in Qin Yu’s eyes, those items weren’t even fit to be called trash, and so he had no interest at all, directly taking off his hat to say, “I came to pick up my weapon.”
The shop assistant was startled for a second. After he saw Qin Yu’s face, the smile on his face immediately disappeared and was replaced by a cold and contemptable sneer. “Haha! I was just thinking who it was. So it was just you ah. Sorry, but our shop’s master won’t make a weapon for a cripple; it would only humiliate his family. Our shop also doesn’t sell weapons to a cripple, so just get lost.”
The shop assistant had barely finished speaking when a big foot kicked him with a bang. The speed was too fast and he had no time to dodge. He released a high screech as his body was sent flying out, landing ruthlessly on the front desk. The front desk shook violently before loudly collapsing with a bang.
The weapons clanked together as they fell into a mess on the floor.
The shop assistant released another miserable shriek as the front desk collapsed over his body. The pressure was enough to make him spit out a mouthful of blood.
“What happened?!” A dark-skinned man of about thirty shouted from inside the shop and jumped out. Once he saw the scene, his anger skyrocketed.
Tie Shou Craftsman Shop had always been revered in Luosang City and even city masters would have to show at least some respect here. Nobody had ever dared to behave atrociously, but today, there was actually a person who was so bold as to come and smash the reception area. [6. Text originally says “谁吃了豹子胆,” which literally translates to “Who ate a leopard gut?” Eating a leopards gut is a saying that means someone is very bold/daring]
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