Chapter 15: Advancing to the Sixth Stage!
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Streams after streams of Celestial Chi coursed within Ye Chen’s body while they made their way into his dantian. As the volume of Celestial Chi in the dantian rapidly rose, Ye Chen could already feel the distance between the rank barrier and his ever-rising Celestial Chi closing.
Generally, even the most gifted warrior with bewildering speed in cultivation would need at least two months to advance from the peak of the Fifth Stage to the Sixth Stage. Thus, given how recent his last Stage Advancement was — he had just attained the Fifth Stage a few days ago — Ye Chen was not too preoccupied with breaking through the rank barrier at the moment. Instead, he was more focused on accruing and condensing his Celestial Chi as a preparation to tear through this rank barrier in one push but only when he was ready.
He was working toward condensing his Celestial Chi when he realized he was close to breaking through the rank barrier. Cracks began to show on the barrier, as if they would break with just the slightest touch.
Ye Chen’s heart skipped a beat in consternation. ‘What’s going on?’
The rank barrier’s situation was akin to a water dam while Ye Chen’s Celestial Chi was acting as the water that had reached the dam’s maximum capacity. Although the water may be still and inert, its sheer volume was enough to push the dam to the breaking point.
The dam was about to break until suddenly, it did! It crumbled in a loud crash!
Ye Chen could feel his own Celestial Chi racing like unruly waves of the sea. He had attained the Celestial Chi Sixth Stage!
Chi Gale State!
Ye Chen gave a low growl and his Celestial Chi instantly radiated from within his body. Once a pugilist had attained the Chi Gale State that was enabled through breaking into the Sixth Stage, any impact of a martial art technique could be accentuated by several folds!
He did not expect his rank barrier to crumble so easily despite his deliberate inertness. Lowering his chin, Ye Chen began to wonder — could it be that his body, baptised by the strange Celestial Chi from the Flying Dagger thus attaining Pure Yang State, had become much more adept in Stage Advancement? Or did the unique property of his Celestial Chi, unfound in the Celestial Chi everyone else had accrued, greatly eased the process of Stage Advancement?
Well, no matter what the reasons were, you cannot find fault in progressing through a Stage!
He returned his attention to the Nine Astra Skies discourse. With the First Grade Thunder Emperor Technique’s fully developed, Ye Chen found himself facing two choices: either he continued to develop Second Grade Thunder Emperor Technique so that his Celestial Chi Stage could be advanced as quickly as before, or he could start to train himself with the other few techniques until he had mastered all of their First Grade. The cost of the latter option would be the deceleration of his Stage Advancement but the upside was obvious. The combined power of Nine Astra Skies was no doubt far more superior to just Thunder Emperor Technique itself!
After a brief analysis of choices, Ye Chen decided to train with another technique from the rest of the chapters that were featured in Nine Astra Skies. This time, he was going to train with the Wind-style cultivation system called Wind Grace Technique.
He was not sure how long it would take for him to master the First Grade Wind Grace Technique. After all, he was only quick in mastering First Grade Thunder Emperor Technique because it was related to his old friend, the Inner Thunderclap Energy Cultivation technique. Out of his own familiarity with the Thunder-style cultivation system, Thunder Emperor Technique became very easily understood.
However, he now found himself in uncharted territory. Naturally, Ye Chen became a lot more attentive so that he could be certain of his understanding with regards to the Wind Grace Discourse. The last thing he wanted was to train the wrong way.
At this moment, a few silhouettes dashed out from the Patriarch Residency and flitted toward Ye Chen’s residency.
It was his father, granduncle, and uncles. Ye Chen quickly stood up in standby.
Ye Zhantian and the rest were eyeing him at an immediate speed upon meeting the young man. Their expressions were flabbergasted.
“Father? Granduncle? Uncles? Is there anything amiss?” Ye Chen asked questioningly. To see that many people filling up the space in his room with their eyes glued onto him made him a little uncomfortable.
“Chen… Did you… Did you just advanced a Stage?” Ye Zhantian asked skeptically. He knew that Ye Chen had only attained the Fifth Stage a few days ago. So even in Ye Zhantian’s most forgiving estimation, Ye Chen should only be able to reach the Sixth Stage after a month or two.
Previously, as Ye Zhantian and the rest were absorbed in their study of the Thunder Emperor Technique, they had picked up some sudden, violent stir of Celestial Chi pulses. Moreover, it was with exclusive characteristics of one who had attained the Sixth Stage as well as the Chi Gale State. Now, each and every pugilist of the Zhan cohort had attained at least the Seventh Stage, so who else — within the perimeter of a few hundred yards — could these pulses belonged to?
It did not take long before they suspected Ye Chen of being the one. Hence, they rushed out of their residency and came to confirm with the young man.
Ye Chen finally understood why they had come so frantically. The intense Celestial Chi pulses he had emitted when he broke through the rank barrier had served as a bell.
“Yes, that was me. I had just attained the Sixth Stage, Father.” Ye Chen nodded.
By this point, Ye Zhantian, Ye Changxuan and the rest were staring at each other in disbelief. Since a few days ago, when his meridian channels were just recovering, Ye Chen had been plowing through the Stages; advancing from one to another in an abnormal speed was enough to make these old-timers sweat cold. Then, it started to become clear that Ye Chen’s development was far more than sheer ‘genius talent’.
“This kid right here… is special. The family’s glorious future lies in the hands of this young man!” Ye Changxuan remarked as he watched Ye Chen with affection.
Ye Zhantian, Ye Zhanlong and the rest of the group bobbed their head in united agreement, their eyes shone with unconcealable happiness. For these past few days, Ye Chen had brought on nothing but delightful surprises!
Seeing Ye Chen receiving high praise from the seniors made Ye Changxuan heaved a long sigh of relief in his heart. With Ye Chen’s talent and character, the old man was sure that he would only achieve incredible, legendary feats in the future. The Ye family was going to rise again!
“Chen’er, now that you have finally reached the Sixth Stage, should you ever face any difficulty or confusion in your cultivation, do not hesitate to ask your granduncle and uncles!” Ye Zhantian said, beaming.
“Oh, I doubt that Chen’er would ever need our advice,” Ye Changxuan remarked with a sigh. He could sense that the Celestial Chi that coursed inside Ye Chen was even purer than his own even though normally, a person’s Celestial Chi would only get purer as they climbed up the Stages. Yet, taking Ye Chen’s current stage into account, it was clear that the state of his Celestial Chi did not follow this orthodox understanding.
Ye Changxuan could not help but wonder if the Ancestor who had visited Ye Chen had left more than just a system of recovered meridian channels and a cultivation system discourse. Could the Ancestor also impart their will inside of Ye Chen?
Of course, this was all just Ye Changxuan’s conjecture.
“Chen’er, you could already defeat Ye Kongyan while he was in the Sixth Stage just by being at the peak of the Fifth Stage. Do you have any idea of how strong you are right now?”
“I don’t know.” Ye Chen shook his head. Without a sparring match, he really could not tell.
“Why don’t we get someone to spar with him?”
“Great idea but, perhaps later? I think we should get back to studying the Thunder Emperor Technique. We could always evaluate Ye Chen some other time!”
At that moment, they had finally found the family’s future shining star. It would not have happened if it was not for Ye Chen!
The group gradually left Ye Chen’s residency until Ye Zhantian was the only one left. He eyed Ye Chen and invited him, “C’mon, Chen’er. Follow me!”
“Alright!” The young man nodded and tailed Ye Zhantian as he entered the Patriarch Residency. They strode through a long corridor until finally, they found themselves in Ye Zhantian’s personal chamber.
Ye Zhantian opened a drawer and rummaged through its content with his head hung low for some time. Then, as he found what he was looking for, he took out an antique stamp seal that was about as large as a thumb. Its color was a clear, shimmering green.
The Flying Dagger was suddenly buzzing uncontrollably at a high frequency inside Ye Chen’s head as if it was triggered by the stamp seal in Ye Zhantian’s hand. ‘Don’t know what that is but it must be a sort of unique treasure!’ Ye Chen thought.
“This is our ancestral stamp seal but it’s the smaller one of the pair. According to our ancestral law, the larger ancestral stamp seal will be held by the current Patriarch while the Successor Patriarch possesses the smaller one.” Ye Zhantian extended his palm to sit the ancestral stamp seal in Ye Chen’s hand. “It’s your responsibility to take care of it now. The stamp seal may not have any practical purposes but it has been our family’s bequest since the days of yore!”
“Understood. It shall be in my possession with utmost care!” Ye Chen replied, holding on to the stamp seal tightly. He could not tell what stone was used to craft it as it was denser than what he had expected. Green and clear, the stamp seal was completely devoid of any impurities in its body.
Ye Chen examined it more closely by placing it in the center of his palm. It looked just like any other stone-made stamp seal without anything outstanding about its looks. Sculpted at the base of the stamp seal was a very intricate ideogram, but from the shape of it, Ye Chen could see that it was the word ‘Ye’. Beside the large ideogram, there were three smaller, fine words the size of a grain. The words were probably ‘Heavenly Astra Seal’.
“Back then, you were just an impulsive child, so I kept the seal for you. Now that you’ve regained your rightful mantle as the Successor Patriarch, it is time for me to bequeath you with what is yours. Should your father be gone, you can rightfully lead your clan,” Ye Zhantian said.
Ye Chen kept the ancestral seal stamp close by tucking it into his inner pocket.
“Father, during the match for the position of Successor Patriarch, I did not control my strength while using the Primordial Thunder Body technique. I think I have wounded Ye Kongyan very gravely,” Ye Chen blurted after some initial hesitation.
“Yet, in that same fight, Ye Kongyan himself had used a forbidden technique of the family, Shadow Storm Talon, on you! He deserved that injury. In fact, he could’ve been accidentally killed back in the match and it would have served him right!” There was a flash of chilly light in Ye Zhantian’s eyes. Ye Kongyan was fortunate that Ye Chen was not harmed in any way, or else Ye Zhantian would have personally killed Ye Kongyan even if it cost him his position as the Patriarch!
“No, I’m not worried about Ye Kongyan. Even if that match repeats itself, I wouldn’t have done anything differently. It’s just that… Now that I think about it, that attack that I had directed to Ye Kongyan’s chest might have crushed his entire meridian channels. I don’t think he would be able to practice martial arts again. Then, considering the fact that we just removed Ye Moyang from his tenure as one of our Elders, I’m worried that a vengeful man like him would plot revenge against us very soon!” Ye Chen explained, his tone was one of concern.
“Very solid point. Ye Moyang was originally one of the Elders of the family. Locking him up just because his son did something wrong isn’t going to hold up. But worry not, Son. I’ve arranged some of my own people to keep an eye on him. Should he show any sign of plotting anything against us, I’ll be sure to nip it in the bud then,” Ye Zhantian replied reassuringly. Then, patting Ye Chen’s head, he added happily, “Chen’er, you have truly matured a lot through your trials! Now that you’re the Successor Chief, let us begin initiating you into your responsibilities!”
Now that he knew his father was already keeping an eye on Ye Moyang, Ye Chen could lessen his worries. Yet, he could not put down the fact that Ye Moyang was still alive. ‘As long as Ye Moyang remains at large, he will always be a source of calamity. After all, Ye Moyang is a fighter with Celestial Chi at the peak of the Seventh Stage!’ Ye Chen thought. ‘Indeed, I should train more to prepare myself for the future.’
After his visit to his father’s Patriarch Residency, Ye Chen returned to his personal courtyard to train again. Now that he had attained the Sixth Stage, he had the Chi Gale State to avail himself. His Primordial Thunder Body could even last all the way up to twenty seconds now, and the longer this technique lasts, the more use it could provide during a battle!
Ever since passing his son the ancestral stamp, Ye Zhantian had been slowly divulging the family’s state of affairs to Ye Chen.
There were two primary sources of revenue for the House of Ye. One, about two-thirds of a mile 1 from the Ye Castle was a series of mountains, with one of them belonging to the family for mining black-iron 2 . There were about a hundred miners working under the House of Ye, with the produce of a year being equivalent to about two hundred Chi-amassing Pills. Meanwhile, the House of Ye operated a shop in the Donglin county that could net in at least a hundred Chi-amassing Pills a year. On the subject of daily living expenses, the House of Ye was still capable of taking care of their own people without help.
In short, the annual gain for the House was only three hundred Chi-amassing Pills. Meanwhile, Ye Chen had consumed more than thousands of Chi-amassing Pills during the three years when he had suffered from the damage of his meridian channels. Needless to say, that consumption amount had exerted a great toll on the family. Back when the House of Ye was in its heydays, it had owned many properties and businesses throughout the Donglin county and the clan was generally very well-off. However, now, many of these businesses had closed down. Hence, the clan was reduced to its current austere state.
Ye Chen immediately felt the burden on his shoulders. As a form of reparations for the sacrifice his clan had made for him, it was his duty to bring the House of Ye back to its former glory!