Translator: Zen Translations Editor: Zen Translations
"Tcheh, when did I agree." Shangguan Xue'er said exasperatedly.
Shangguan Fei'er smiled and said: "How can it not be an agreement? If you didn't give tacit approval, how could you get me to look for Bing'er? A silent approval is still approval, and approval is agreement right? Hehehe, Sis, don't deny it any further. I'm so happy today~ Don't you know, these few days, I have been feeling so terrible. Now that you are here, I finally have someone to talk to. Tonight, let us sisters talk through the entire night!"
Shangguan Xue'er said: "Just now you said, that Zhou Weiqing has hope of surpassing me?"
Shangguan Fei'er nodded and said: "It's not just a chance, but a certainty."
Hearing her words, Shangguan Xue'er was instantly unwilling to accept it. As the heir to the Heaven's Expanse Palace, she had always been the top of her generation. It could be said that even amongst all the disciples and heirs of the Five Great Saint Lands, she was still at the top of the pyramid. Zhou Weiqing did not even have the backing of any Great Saint Lands, though she had to admit his talent was not bad, but how could he possibly surpass herself with the Boundless Infinitum Set. No matter what, Shangguan Xue'er was unwilling to believe that was possible.
Naturally, Shangguan Fei'er could understand what her sister was thinking. With a smile, she said: "Sis, don't think I am exaggerating or lying. Before I spent time with him, I was also unwilling to believe such a thing was possible, or that he could even surpass me. However, after all this time together, I have no choice but to accept that Little Fatty is truly a monster. The speed of his cultivation is just too shocking."
Shangguan Xue'er furrowed her brow and said: "Well, say then, what sort of advancements has he made, and in what areas?"
Shangguan Fei'er said: "Do you remember what stage he was at during the Heavenly Jewel Tournament? As far as I know, when he first left the Fei Li Empire to join the Heavenly Jewel Tournament, he had just reached the Three Jeweled Stage, barely entering the Heavenly Shen Energy stage. Yet… now? His Heavenly Energy has already reached the Nineteenth Stage, almost reaching the Five-Jeweled Stage! This time, he is entering closed door cultivation for the purpose of breaking through to that Mid Level Zun Stage…That might seem like nothing to you or me, but just think about it, from three to five Jewels, how long has it taken him? It is only about a year… even for you … when you were at that stage, you never rose at such a speed right?"
Hearing Shangguan Fei'er's words, it was as if Shangguan Xue'er's eyes were suddenly opened.
All this time, she had never really put Zhou Weiqing on the same level as herself. Perhaps at most she had been surprised by his six Attributes, thinking his talent was just 'not bad'.
However, upon hearing her sister's words, only then did she realise that it was indeed true. In just a year, his Heavenly Energy had raised six stages, and he was about to breakthrough to the Five-Jeweled stage. After all, the higher one's Heavenly Energy cultivation level was, the harder it was to continue raising. At the three-Jeweled stage, perhaps Shangguan Xue'er's speed was no lesser than Zhou Weiqing, but at the Five-Jeweled stage, her speed was already slower.
Although it seemed like Zhou Weiqing was extremely far from Shangguan Xue'er's current Seven-Jeweled cultivation level, she was suddenly reminded of a very pertinent fact by her sister's words… a fact that she had overlooked before this.
Shangguan Bing'er had previously told them that Zhou Weiqing's Heavenly Energy had only Awakened about four to five years ago. That meant that in just this short period of time, his Heavenly Energy had skyrocketed to what it currently was… from zero to the almost five-Jewels now. Furthermore, Zhou Weiqing was about two years younger than them, and did not previously have any support from any Great Saint Lands. Who knew what his cultivation level would grow to in two years time!
Shangguan Fei'er continued: "Now you understand what I mean right? That Immortal Deity Technique of Little Fatty's is truly terrifying, almost disgusting even. Although we are unable to cultivate it, as it is almost tantamount to suicide, but it seems to have been made for him. With that cultivation technique, I am certain that before the nine-Jeweled stage, his speed of advancement will not slow much. That is to say… I estimate that within four to five years, maybe less, he will reach the Upper Level Zong Stage."
"By that time, who knows, he might actually even be able to reach the Heavenly King Stage before the age of thirty! That is something that not even Big Uncle was able to accomplish! Sis, just think about it, in four or five years, are you certain that you will definitely reach the Heavenly King Stage? Furthermore, we are slightly older than he is. That is the reason why I said that he would definitely be able to catch up with you in the future."
Shangguan Xue'er looked at her gleeful little sister and said passively: "Heavenly Energy cultivation level is important, but it is also not the deciding factor for everything. Furthermore, all of that is just your estimations."
Shangguan Fei'er laughed merrily as she said: "Sis, looks like you really aren't convinced! Well, what about actual combat? Even though you have the Boundless Infinitum Set, that fellow also has the 'Hate Ground no Handle' Legendary Set! Perhaps in terms of comparing Legendary Sets, his might be slightly weaker than yours, but how much of a difference can the two have? Do not forget, he also has the Demonic Change State and the Six Attribute Elemental Jewels. In terms of actual combat, I currently dare not say that I will definitely be able to defeat him. Even if I can, it will definitely be at a heavy price. This is even because I know most of his Skills very well. Although you are much stronger than I am, if you are not clear about his abilities, even if you can defeat him, it would also be at a heavy price."
All of a sudden, Shangguan Xue'er giggled. "Fei'er, do you know what you look like now?"
Shangguan Fei'er started momentarily before saying: "What do I look like?"
Shangguan Xue'er continued saying laughingly: "Just now, you looked totally like a mother hen protecting her little chicks. You haven't even married that fellow yet, and you are already so protective of him. Well, besides the fact he hasn't caught up with me yet, even if he becomes stronger than me, so what? Anyway, we are not enemies."
"Sis, you dare say I am like a mother hen?! I… I…" As she said that, Shangguan Fei'er suddenly sprang savagely at Shangguan Xue'er.
While the two sisters were joking around with each other at one side, Zhou Weiqing had started his closed door cultivation in his own tent.
This time, the closed door cultivation was not at Long Shiya's behest, but something he had requested of his own accord. After being taught by Long Shiya, Zhou Weiqing became clearer and clearer about his own flaws and what he lacked. On the surface, his talents were amazing. However, he had not been in the Heavenly Jewel Master world for long, and his flaws were plentiful as well. These flaws might not seem like much, some extremely tiny, but if an enemy managed to grab hold of one and make use of it, it could be a possible point that sent him to eternal doom.
More importantly, the Peerless Battalion had been replenished with so many new men, and Zhou Weiqing could feel the weight on his shoulders increasing. Although he did not speak out about this, that feeling in his heart was definitely growing. Closed door cultivation to break through to the Five-Jeweled cultivation level was his current goal. Furthermore, this time, he would do so by training in the Six Ultimate Skill Manipulation Arts while in Demonic Change State.
Long Shiya would remain in the same tent as Zhou Weiqing throughout this period. During the time when Zhou Weiqing was training in the Six Ultimate Skill Manipulation Arts, he would give detailed pointers and correct any mistakes.
In his eyes, Zhou Weiqing's passion and persistence towards cultivation was far below his own. Back in those days, Long Shiya had gone through so much in order to increase his cultivation and gain power, barely forging his way through countless of trials and tribulations. Yet, at the same time, he had no choice but to admit that this disciple of his was far superior to himself in terms of understanding and comprehension. In addition to his other talents, it was definitely a startling cultivation speed. If he examined himself, Long Shiya knew that he was already being extremely critical and strict, but Zhou Weiqing would still give him a pleasant surprise every day. The Six Ultimate Skill Manipulation Arts in his disciple's hands was slowing starting to look decent. After all these days, at least in terms of the first stage of the Six Ultimate Skill Manipulation Arts, Zhou Weiqing was already starting to enter deeper and at a much more stable state. At least for all Skills below the Five-Jeweled stage, he was already able to mimic them.
Of course, that was not to say that Zhou Weiqing would practice mimicking every single Skill, but it was more a particular talent or attribute that he had to master in mimicking; basically training hard in the Six Ultimate Skill Manipulation Arts' mimicking capabilities. As the saying goes 'The Methods used may vary, but the Principle always remains the same'. As long as he knew the key to the method, it would be much easier to mimic any Skill within his capabilities.
To Zhou Weiqing, having two months to breakthrough to the Five-Jeweled stage was not a particularly difficult task. After all, his Immortal Deity Technique was truly 'disgusting'. Just like what Shangguan Fei'er had said, the speed of growth of his Heavenly Energy had never slowed, not even as his cultivation level increased.
Normally, Heavenly Energy cultivation would become harder and harder as one's cultivation level increased. However, in Zhou Weiqing's case, whenever he raised a stage of Heavenly Energy, his own Death Acupuncture energy whirlpools would also increase by one, and the draw from the atmospheric energy was greatly increased, and this would offset the extra difficulty in cultivation speed.
Originally, Zhou Weiqing had been very worried what would happen to him after reaching the thirty sixth Stage of Heavenly Energy and reaching the Heavenly Xu Stage and the Heavenly King Stage. After all, that was the limit of the Immortal Deity Technique with the thirty six Death Acupuncture Points, and he did not have another higher level cultivation technique. Now, he did not need to worry too much about the future; with a teacher like Long Shiya, that was no longer any problem. At least, before he broke through the Heavenly King Stage, it was clear that Long Shiya would not easily leave his side.
As Zhou Weiqing entered the close door cultivation, everyday he would enter the Demonic Change State to train in all his various Skills, not just to train in the 'Ice Cold Perception', increasing his senses and knowledge in the profound secrets in that state, but also to increase the time he could remain in that state. At the same time, he was also constantly improving in his Six Ultimate Skill Manipulation Arts and Heavenly Energy. It could be said that it was not only training in Skill usage, but also Heavenly Energy, without neglecting either. This was Zhou Weiqing's greatest advantage compared to any other Heavenly Jewel Master, an advantage from the Immortal Deity Technique, the advantage that would allow him to slowly catch up with the Shangguan Sisters.
At the same time, the development of the Peerless Battalion was on the right path, following the instructions that Zhou Weiqing had laid out. The three thousand new ruffians who had joined were quickly dispersed amongst the various new Companies, and with the lure of food and money, as well as the 'propaganda' from the older Peerless Battalion soldiers, soon converted them all.
Evolving of the Peerless Battalion! (2)
The Peerless Battalion training was not in the actual campsite. Everyday, they would all head out of the camp, running twenty kilometres to a empty space for their training.
For other units, if they were to move out without consideration like that, they would definitely draw the attention and criticism from the headquarters. However, ever since Shen Ji knew about the presence of Long Shiya, it was as if the Peerless Battalion had gained a permanent green light, and they had no problems in doing such training daily.
The first time these new recruits saw the Peerless Battalion soldiers in their titanium alloy mail and all of them having a Consolidated Bow, they were truly shocked to the core.
The current Peerless Battalion was far different from what it had been when Zhou Weiqing had first arrived at the old Ruffian Battalion, in terms of cultivation, equipment, power, even confidence. Naturally, it was much easier to 'conquer' the hearts of these new recruits as compared to previously.
Looking at the 'old' Peerless Battalion soldiers using their Consolidated Bows to continuously destroy targets at an impressive distance of a thousand yards, then witnessing the impossible sight of the Peerless Battalion Air Force lift off… If one were to say that these new Peerless Battalion soldiers were not highly tempted, it would definitely be a lie.
The 'brainwashing techniques' that Zhou Weiqing had brought up was also of critical effect. Hearing all the miracles that had happened over the past six months, the great stories of growth and strength… slowly the new ruffians grew to accept the Peerless Battalion.
Against such people, just beating them down alone was definitely not enough. After all, being sent to the Ruffian Battalion, which of them weren't scoundrels and rogues, old experienced hands? Only with the addition of being lured by the promise of profit and gain, power, a slow methodical guidance to bring them onto the right path… only this would bring about the effect that Zhou Weiqing hoped for.
The facts proved themselves once more. Everything that Zhou Weiqing had done was extremely successful. After barely a month, the new Peerless Battalion was basically basically integrated.
After the 'Battalion wide competition' that was held, the five thousand three hundred soldiers of the Peerless Battalion were finally fused together as one unit.
Five thousand three hundred men. Ten large main Companies and a unique 'Commando' Company.
This 'Commando' Company was specially selected and led by the seven Heavenly Bow Unit God Archers. As for the original ten Company Leaders of the main Companies, four of them had actually changed after the large competition.
Amongst the three thousand seven hundred new ruffian soldiers, there were some powerhouses who were much stronger than the original Ruffian Battalion the Peerless Battalion had consisted off. Most of these powerhouses came from the strongest of the northern armies, the Central North Army, with some of them even originating from the Ghost Demon Horse Cavalry Troop.
Amongst them, the most valiant and impressive was a fellow called Lei Zi. Lei Zi was twenty seven years old this year, and was originally the Battalion Commander from the Central North Army Ruffian Battalion. Indeed, the Battalion Commander. As a Heavenly Jewel Master, he was actually already at an impressive Six-Jeweled stage… at only twenty seven years old! Even in the Great Saint Lands, that was already considered a very good result. Yet, he was a free cultivator not belonging to any Clan.
Lei Zi's Elemental Jewel Attribute was that of Earth, while his Physical Jewel Attribute was Strength. Ordinarily speaking, with such attributes, even if he weren't an ultimate Defense type like Lin TianAo, most would still focus on defense as the main.
However, this fellow acted in the totally opposite manner. His aspirations were towards offense, chasing after the strongest attacks possible, even choosing the rarer offensive Skills amongst the Earth Attribute. Although he still did not have Consolidated Equipment, he had already finished Storing all his Skills. More importantly, he had been able to use his own control and understanding to develop two Skills of his own. Such a talent… it was truly impressive.
Such a talent like himself should have had a glorious career ahead of him, but the reason he had been exiled to the Ruffian Battalion was because he offended someone.
This Lei Zi was originally part of a specially created Battalion in the Central North Army, consisting totally of Jewel Masters, and he had been one of the top in that unit as well, reaching the rank of Company Leader in that Battalion. Alas, he had killed that Battalion Commander's little brother, and had thus been sent to the Ruffian Battalion. Being able to stay alive despite that was only because of all the military exploits and merits he had earned over all the previous years.
Such a person, when he entered the Peerless Battalion, naturally his natural talent would shine forth brightly. Lei Zi himself never dreamed that he would have another chance, leaving a special Battalion consisting totally of Jewel Masters, and ending up in yet another such Battalion. Furthermore, from the surface of things, though the Peerless Battalion's individual soldier strength might not be comparable to his original special Battalion, in terms of numbers it was far superior.
In the Battalion Competition, Lei Zi cut a conspicuous figure, defeating all of his opponents, even some of the older Company Leaders who had been personally taught by Shangguan Fei'er, and had been extremely arrogant.
He requested to take over as Battalion Commander, to become the Battalion Commander of the Peerless Battalion. After winning the championship of the Battalion Competition, he challenged Zhou Weiqing to a fight.
At that moment, all the new recruits were extremely excited. They wanted to see for themselves how strong their Battalion Commander was. However, all the old Peerless Battalion soldiers all said a silent prayer for Lei Zi. The reason was simple – to gain the right to challenge the Boss, he had to first get past the 'Lady Boss'… and was she that easy to deal with?
Very quickly, Lei Zi learned why the flowers were so red. In front of Shangguan Fei'er, he was like a little child, not standing a chance at all. Both were six Jewels, but Shangguan Fei'er easily beat him up without breaking a sweat.
At first, he had not been satisfied with that loss, thinking that the only reason Shangguan Fei'er could win was because she had God Tier Consolidated Equipment. However, she just kept all of her Consolidated Equipment, and without even using her Elemental Jewel Stored Skills, just depending on her ferocious close combat skills, she defeated him time and time again. At last, Lei Zi had accepted his loss.
As such, Lei Zi had taken over Mammoth's original position, becoming the Main Company Leader of the First Company, with Mammoth becoming his Vice Commander. Mammoth was also not unsatisfied. After all, he had lost.
At the same time, Lei Zi was still harbouring some doubt in his heart; after all, being convinced of Shangguan Fei'er's strength did not mean he could easily be convinced by Zhou Weiqing so indirectly.
After all, since the new recruits had come, Zhou Weiqing had not even made an appearance.
There were three others in a similar state as Lei Zi. All of them were Heavenly Jewel Masters, though not as high a cultivation level as Lei Zi, they too had defeated some of the old Company Leaders and taken over their positions.
After this Battalion Competition, Shangguan Fei'er's prestige grew even higher. Not only because of her sheer strength and power, but also because of the gratitude the older soldiers held for her. It could be said that if not for Shangguan Fei'er teaching them close combat skills, perhaps even if not all of the Company Leaders would be swapped out, at least eight of them would be knocked out of the running. It was Shangguan Fei'er's selfless teaching and the half year of tough training that had allowed them the chance to defeat their opponents and keep their rank and status.
At the same time, this Battalion Competition was also a big alarm bell to the entire Peerless Battalion. No one had an absolutely guaranteed rank and status, and only strength and power was the most important, the most consistent thing. This type of meritocracy was the fairest way of doing things – who held the greatest power could ascend in rank. This also gave all of the Peerless Battalion soldiers further incentive to train harder, to protect their rank or to advance further.
Besides all of that, the Peerless Battalion spared no effort in gearing up the new recruits. Although they did not currently have any military merits or awards, each of them had a record, and the equipment would be given to them first and they would 'pay back' later.
Perhaps at this point in time, these new recruits did not realise what this debt truly meant. After all, with their ruffian soldier nature, many of them did not even plan to pay back. Alas for them, in the near future, when Zhou Weiqing returned from his closed door cultivation, they would soon understand that not returning was not an option for them.
Just like that, two months passed by swiftly as if in a blink of an eye. The entire Peerless Battalion had gone through these two months of training and equipping, and could now be said to be armed to the teeth. At the same time, the various Companies had also gone through several different rearrangements according to their combat strength.
The main lack was the Consolidated Equipment Wings, which were not so easily finished. Although Yun Li and Little Miss Muddle were getting much more familiar with creating them, it still took considerable time to create these Consolidating Equipment Scrolls due to their sheer complexity and the fact that two were needed for the complete wing set. As such, in a short period of time, it would be impossible to fully gear the entire Peerless Battalion with them.
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