Chapter 27: Star Destroying Finger!
"Bone Breaking Palm, primary tier-2 battle technique. A single palm is enough to damage internal organs and break bones; 1,500 points.
"Seven Cries Fist, primary tier-2 battle technique. With a single fist, the energy of seven animal cries will sharply converge and attack its opponent with massive destructive power; 1,700 points.
"Quick Revolving Spear, mid tier-2 Battle technique. Practicing this makes one's spear fluid as water, providing reliable coverage all around; 2,000 points."
Xiang Shaoyun was leisurely browsing the inner court's Battle Technique Hall, taking a look at each and every battle technique description he passed by. On his face was plastered a bitter smile. Right now, he only had 1,400 points remaining. Wanting to exchange for a tier-2 battle technique was not going to be easy.
"I used to think that 2,000 points was quite a lot, but now I realize that I am really a poor man!" Xiang Shaoyun grieved.
After browsing through the entire first floor, his eyes fell on a battle technique called the "Star Destroying Finger".
Star Destroying Finger, an incomplete tier-3 battle technique. One finger contained enough explosive power to utterly kill and obliterate one’s enemies—3,000 points.
"These are all incomplete tier-3 battle techniques, which is probably why they were placed here instead of the second floor. However, its price is still staggering!" Xiang Shaoyun gasped in shock as he stared at the nearby battle techniques. After a while, he continued, "Star Destroying Finger! This is a rarely seen finger technique! Although it's incomplete, if I'm able to unleash a tiny portion of its full power, it'll be enough to threaten those at the Astral Realm!"
The more Xiang Shaoyun looked at this battle technique, the more he desired it. How he wanted to exchange for it! What a pity it was that he only had half of the required points needed to exchange for the skill.
"Don't bother looking anymore. The requirements to cultivate the Star Destroying Finger are extremely strict! Even if you're able to gather enough points to exchange for it, it'll merely be a waste," a nearby voice said from beside Xiang Shaoyun.
Turning his head, he found that it was the person who had a fateful connection with him, Wang Zhenchuan. Previously when Xiang Shaoyun first dined in the restaurant, it was Wang Zhenchuan who protected him from Wang Yan's attacks.
"Greetings, senior brother. May I know what difficulty there is in practicing the Star Destroying Finger?" Xiang Shaoyun humbly asked.
"The Star Destroying Finger is an incomplete battle technique, making it extremely difficult to practice. Most importantly, one's bones must be extremely sturdy. Otherwise, one won't be able to bring out even half of its power," Wang Zhenchuan emphasized. Pausing for a while, he then added, "Those who have tried practicing this skill have mostly given up."
"It's that hard to learn?!" Xiang Shaoyun gasped in astonishment.
"Indeed. Since you're carrying a saber on your back, why don't you go and choose a tier-2 saber skill for yourself? It's much more practical that way," Wang Zhenchuan patiently suggested.
"Many thanks for senior brother's kind reminder," Xiang Shaoyun gratefully said. He then proceeded to ask, "Senior brother, could you be so kind as to lend me 1,500 points? In the future, I'll be sure to pay you back with interest!"
"Borrowing 1,500 points?" Wang Zhenchuan lightly pondered, scratching his head. Even for an inner court disciple such as him, this was still quite a hefty sum.
Thinking that Wang Zhenchuan did not believe in him, Xiang Shaoyun took out his own jade plate and said, "This is a jade plate from the Hall of Limits. I believe that after a short while, I'll have even more points in here! At that time, returning senior brother's points shouldn't be an issue."
Upon seeing the jade plate in Xiang Shaoyun's hand, Wang Zhenchuan marvelled to himself, saying, "He is indeed worthy of being the genius who triggered the five stars illuminating the sky! He's able to clear the Hall of Limits' challenges!"
Thinking for a brief moment, he then replied, "I can lend you the points, but you must promise me something."
"What would senior brother like me to help you with? As long as I, Xiang Shaoyun, am able to do it, I will carry it out without question!" Xiang Shaoyun promised as he patted his chest.
“If it’s possible, please introduce me to the Purple Lightning Marquis. I wish to have him as my master,” Wang Zhenchuan replied very honestly.
“So this is the case. Consider it done!” Xiang Shaoyun promised as he placed a fist to his chest. He thought to himself, If he becomes Zi Changhe’s disciple, as Zi Changhe’s junior brother, I’ll become his martial uncle! I won’t need to return this debt then, heh heh.
“Good! Let’s go over there, then. I’ll transfer you my jade plate’s points!” Wang Zhenchuan exclaimed.
“Great!” Xiang Shaoyun joyfully replied.
The two of them then proceeded to the front counter where Wang Zhenchuan transferred some of his points to Xiang Shaoyun. Now, Xiang Shaoyun had 2,900 points in his Jade Plate. Adding the Hall of Limits’ 20 percent discount, exchanging for the Star Destroying Finger became a non-issue.
After Xiang Shaoyun obtained the Star Destroying Finger, Wang Zhenchuan could not help but gasp, “Didn’t I say that the Star Destroying Finger was extremely difficult to cultivate?”
“Just because it’s difficult to cultivate does not mean I am unable to do so,” Xiang Shaoyun casually replied before further asking, “Senior brother, may I know how to address you? I will definitely recommend you to Senior Brother Zi on your behalf.”
“Inner court disciple, Wang Zhenchuan,” he earnestly replied.
“Okay. Wait for my good news!” Xiang Shaoyun told him.
Not dallying any further, he bid farewell to Wang Zhenchuan and left.
Within three days, he had to master the Star Destroying Finger so as to guarantee his safety throughout the journey. He could not become food for the demonic beasts just for the sake of the Earth Star Spring!
After going to and exchanging for some food at the restaurant, Xiang Shaoyun returned to his personal compound. Retrieving the method to practice the Star Destroying Finger, he began to meditate on it. He swiftly glanced through the formula as well as the pictures for practicing the Star Destroying Finger. He memorized all of it practically at once.
This was one of his greatest assets—photographic memory.
If one wanted to practice the Star Destroying Finger, the most important prerequisite was that his finger bones needed to be sufficiently sturdy. One’s finger bones needed to be at least as sturdy as a tier-1 weapon before being able to practice it to minor completion. The sturdiness of a tier-2 weapon would allow the user to exert an ever greater force, and the hardness of a tier-3 weapon would allow one to practice it to great completion.
Having strong finger bones was key to the practicing of the Star Destroying Finger. This was also why Wang Zhenchuan had relentlessly warned Xiang Shaoyun against practicing this particular battle technique. Normal low-ranking martial artists would find it impossible to have finger bones as hard as tier-1 weapons, hence finding it difficult to practice this particular skill.
“With my current condition, my finger bones should be about as hard as a tier-1 weapon. Practicing this skill should pose no problems for me whatsoever,” Xiang Shaoyun muttered to himself. He then lightly sighed and said, “The Star Destroying Finger is only two-thirds complete, missing that final portion. What a pity.”
He immediately began to enter into a state of visualization, viewing one image after another within his mind.
This was one of his cultivation gifts, which was also the main reason as to why he was able to quickly comprehend various techniques. He possessed this ability ever since he was young, which set him far aside from his fellow peers.
In the state of visualization, he could quickly grasp the main points behind the movements shown in the images. Once he understood the key points behind the images, practicing it together with the mantra made it such that he was able to achieve twice the result with half the effort.
Once he had completely comprehended the Star Destroying Finger, Xiang Shaoyun repeatedly jabbed at a wooden peg. His physical body was already extraordinarily sturdy. Adding the fact that he was concentrating his power into his strong hand, landing blow after blow on the wooden peg did not hurt him one bit.
Right now, the only thing he needed to accomplish was to ensure that his finger would be able to endure the releasing of astral energy. Once he mastered that, embedding his finger with energy would not be an issue for him.
After a single day, he didn’t know how many wooden pegs he had jabbed with his finger, which was now completely sore. Unfortunately, he had not been able to reach the point where he could release astral energy in his jabs.
That being said, he still had quite a substantial harvest from his practice. He could feel that the energy within him had begun flowing to his finger. So long as he could gather that energy and release it in a single breath, practicing the skill to minor completion would be a breeze.