Chapter 50: Jade Bone Complete!
Henyee Translations Henyee Translations
Chen Fan called Zhou Tianhao to ask about Xu Rongfei’s father.
“Xu Ao? Why did he come to Chu Zhou City?” Zhou Tianhao was shocked by the revelation.
“Is he one of the top most powerful people?” Chen Fan asked curiously.
“Master Chen, he was at the very top of the food chain in the Jiang Bei region.” Zhou Tianhao answered.
“How does he compare with the Third Lord of Wei? “Chen Fan asked.
“Third Lord is way less powerful.” Zhou Tianhao shook his head. “Xu Ao runs a very successful outfit in Hai Zhou City. Third Lord’s business was less than half the size as his.”
“Master Chen, what is going on? Did he mess with you?” Zhou Tianhao asked nervously.
“Nah. I just found out that he is the father of one of my friends.” Chen Fan said lightly.
“That’s good; you don’t want to be in his way. Even Third Lord dares not to cross Xu Ao.”
“Really? I thought the Wei Family was the most influential family in the Jiang Bei region. Why is the Third Lord afraid of Xu Ao?”
“Well, Xu Ao is, of course, no match against the collective might of the Wei Family. However, The Third Lord and his family are not… very close if you know what I mean. If the Third Lord has a feud with Xu Ao, his old man might not even stand up for him.”Zhou Tianhao smiled wryly.
“And Xu Ao’s father in law is also a force to be reckoned with.” Zhou Tianhao paused a second and said, “Anyways, all you need to know is that no one in Jiang Bei dares cross Xu Ao.”
“That makes much more sense now.” Chen Fan nodded as he realized that Xu Ao had risen to power thanks to his father in law’s protection.
Judging by his interaction with Xu Rongfei and Auntie Xu last night, he didn’t seem to want to cut ties with his first family. However, he also needed to tread carefully since it was impossible for him to divorce his second wife either.
“Master Chen, I want to ask a favor of you.” Zhou Tianhao said consciously.
“What is it?” Chen Fan asked.
“There will be a martial arts tournament in half a month. This tournament is crucial to our business, and the outcome is tied directly to our next year’s profit. Thanks to A’Biao, I was able to get by last year’s event. However, I have heard that this year’s competition is extremely fierce, and there is going to be Internal Force users too.” Zhou Tianhao heaved a sigh.
“A tournament?” Chen Fan’s interest was piqued.
“Indeed.” Zhou Tianhao nodded.
“You are not talking about underground cage fighting, are you?”
Zhou Tianhao grinned and said, “Dear Master Chen, look at me. Do I look like a criminal scumbag to you? It’s a normal tournament; everyone plays by the rules. No one has been seriously injured ever since its conception. ”
“These martial artists had trained many years just for this opportunity to put their training to work. We have strict rules, and no funny business was allowed. Each businessman will pick his champion, and the outcome of the fight would determine the share of influence one would get in the coming year.
“You know better than me how powerful those Internal Force users are. Just Linbao alone had nearly killed me. How am I supposed to maintain my businesses for the next year if more Linbaos show up?”
Zhou Tianhao said with bitterness in his voice.
Every year around this time, he had to stomach the humiliation from business rivals who happened to be more resourceful than him. Many of his rivals invited world renowned Muay Thai kickboxers, Taekwondo masters or Baji Fist masters, but he had only one champion: A’Biao.
If the Internal Force users were going to enter the race this year, A’Biao would definitely not be enough to ensure the smooth operation of business next year.
“You want me to help you fighting at the tournament?” Chen Fan furrowed his brows.
“Of course I want to, but I wouldn’t dare ask you.” Zhou Tianhao hurried an explanation.
“I have already invited Master Guo as my champion. Master Guo was also an Internal Force user. However, he hasn’t partaken in the tournament for many years, so I want to invite you to come with me just in case.
“If you are with me, at least people from outside of the city wouldn’t look down on us.”
“Fine, I can see sense in that. ” Chen Fan nodded.”Might as well. I want to meet more Internal Force users anyways.
“I will go with you; just let me know when to leave.”
“Yes, yes,” Zhou Tianhao answered excitedly.
After he had learned more about Xu Ao, Chen Fan started to focus on building the Dharma Array.
By then, one of the four components of the Misty Mountain Array: the Spirit Channeling Array, was completed. The Spirit Channeling Array had been underway ever since Third Lord of Wei had delivered the last shipment of deep-sea rocks. As for the Mist Array and the Guardian Array, Chen Fan was still waiting for the material to be collected.
“While I wait, I should hurry up and finish the Spirit Channeling Array. The other two are not that important anyway.”
Chen Fan finally made up his mind to finish the second array.
In the next two weeks that followed, he rushed home as soon as he was done school and started to work on those rocks from the deep sea.
These rocks were huge; each was the size of an elephant and weighted a few tones. They were just ordinary rocks and could only absorb a small amount of Water Qi per unit volume. In order to meet the requirement of the array, Chen Fan had to rely on size.
The method of refining a deep-sea rock was also different than that of refining the Jade Marrow.
Chen Fan held a dagger in one hand as he awakened the arcane energy inside of him. He channeled the energy into the sharp blade and then started to carve countless cryptic symbols onto the surface of the rock. There was a primitive and raw nature in those scraggly strokes that made up the symbols. A faint golden light glinted in the deep grooves of each stroke.
It would take Chen Fan at least a few hours to cover one of those rocks with symbols and to complete the array, Chen Fan needed sixteen rocks. There was no time to waste; Chen Fan worked day and night industriously and eventually finished the work.
Chen Fan heaved a sigh. He stood at the mountain peak and looked down. He saw dark rocks stood in the path that connected the lake to where he was standing every few hundred meters or so. Symbols and inscriptions covered all of those rocks. Upon closer look, one could even see the flowing golden light hidden in the tiny grooves on the surface of the rocks.
“The next step is to turn the Spirit Channeling Array on.”
Chen Fan sat down with his legs crossed. He faced the vast expanse of the lake and close his eyes, extending his soul energy to the void dimension.
Inside the void, Chen Fan was surrounded by impenetrable darkness. However, he could vaguely trace out sixteen flickering dots in the distance: those were the sixteen deep-sea rocks.
Chen Fan shouted and connected his soul energy with the first dot.
The dot flickered for a second before it cranked up its brightness. A barely visible thin ray of light shot out from the first rock and when it landed on the second rock, the second rock also lite up just like the first one.
Two, three, four… At last, all sixteen rocks were lit up.
These sixteen rocks shined brightly inside the dark void like sixteen torches. Inside the Void Dimension, their energy could be felt even from far away.
In the real world, the sixteen rocks only gave a faint golden glow that was easily overpowered by the sunshine.
The moment that all sixteen torches were lit up, Chen Fan became alert and was ready to finally kick start the array.
The first few seconds was the most critical moment of the entire process. As soon as the array was started, the flood gate would be open, and all the Spirit Qi inside of the Yan Gui Lake would be dumped upon the Array in a matter of seconds. If the array was not strong enough to hold the Spirit Qi, Chen Fan would not only have to start all over again but also risk jeopardizing his own life.
Lo and behold, a powerful wave of Water Spirit Qi gushed into the array through the channel created by the sixteen sea rocks. The immense power agitated the five Spirit Gathering Plates as they quickly reached their holding limit.
Chen Fan was at the forefront of the array and had taken the brunt of the force from the powerful pulse of energy. Luckily, the Void Mortal Refinement Art had significantly strengthened his bones and sinews, and therefore, he was able to hold his ground. That being said, Chen Fan could feel the pressure in his body increasing as his system accommodated more and more energy.
The steadily increasing pressure inside of Chen Fan didn’t unnerve him. Instead, he was excited by the deluge of surging energy inside of him.
He allowed an immeasurable amount of energy to rush into his body, colliding against every single piece of muscle and bone. Chen Fan doubled down on the Void Mortal Refinement Art and dug in to absorb as much Spirit Qi as possible.
After a while, his bones started to glow with the color of jade.
Soon, the glow started to spread until all 206 bones in Chen Fan’s body were suffused with the creamy glow. A mysterious and profound change was happening inside of Chen Fan’s body.
Before he knew it, he had reached the second level of the Void Mortal Refinement Art: Jade Bone.
After a while, Chen Fan slowly opened his eyes, and then heaved a sigh of relief.
By then the flood of the Spirit Qi from the lake had also subsided. The deluge had reduced to a trickle, and all the energy was safely contained within the Spirit Gathering Array. As Chen Fan had expected, the high concentration of the Spirit Qi had caused the mist to form inside and around the house, making it all that more fitting for a home of a cultivator.
“The sea rocks are not nearly as effective as I expected. I should find a better replacement soon.” Chen Fan lamented.
Despite the slight hiccup, the array was a success.
Unlike many other Foundation Establishment Arts, The Void Mortal Refinement Art was divided into five levels.
Ice Skin, Jade Bone, Silver Blood, Golden Eyes and Dao Body
Once he reached the fifth level, he would be able to reach the physical requirement for completing the Connate Spirit Level. He should be able to connect his soul energy with all types of Qi on the earth without any difficulties.
However, even among the members of The Sect of the Grand Dao, only a handful of cultivators had reached level five.
“I had already reached the Ice Skin level when I breached the mid-stage of the Foundation Establishment. However, If not for the help of the Spirit Channeling Array, I would still be stuck with level one. It’s going to be an uphill battle for the rest of my cultivation on Earth. ” Chen Fan lamented.
He slowly stood up and felt like his body was charged with energy. He could feel that his bones were fortified and were nearly unbreakable.
“I have gained more power; all I need is to test it.” Chen Fan said as he shook his head.
He wished that Lei Qianjue would come knocking on his door to seek revenge right now.
Suddenly, his phone rang, and it was Zhou Tianhao on the other side of the line.
He called to inform Chen Fan that the Martial Arts tournament was about to start.