Chapter 14 Slowly Transforming
In the following few days, Yan Liqiang stayed in the Weaponsmiths Quarter and didn’t exhibit any unusual behavior.
He disallowed the maidservant of the Weaponsmiths Quarter from delivering any of his meals again. Just like everyone else in the Weaponsmiths Quarter, he also gathered in the dining hall to dine together. He’d eat whatever the others ate and while he ate, he’d happily chat with the others. After having finished eating, he’d go to whichever courtyard he wanted to watch the different processes of those blacksmiths while they forged and produced various weapons, and he would ask those blacksmiths for guidance. Occasionally, he’d also go to the courtyard where the soldiers lived to watch them train.
Yan Liqiang treated everyone with respect and didn’t flaunt his status as the Quarter Master’s nephew. He addressed everyone as ‘uncle’ or ‘brother’ and treated even the blacksmiths and servants of the Weaponsmiths Quarter with due respect. Due to his friendliness, easy-going nature and respectful treatment of others, Yan Liqiang was able to get along well with everyone in the Weaponsmiths Quarter in just a few days. He fit right in with them and was greeted by smiles wherever he went.
The first two days, Qian Su still kept a close eye on Yan Liqiang, but when he realized that Yan Liqiang was already comfortable enough in the Weaponsmiths Quarter, he stopped monitoring him. Besides, it wasn’t like Yan Liqiang was capable of causing trouble in the Weaponsmiths Quarter so he left him alone. However, Qian Su himself frequently traveled to the county town of Huanglong County. He would often go missing for a day and even stayed out all night from time to time. Whenever that happened, everyone in the Weaponsmiths Quarter knew that Quarter Master Qian had gone out to fool around.
After Yan Liqiang had gotten closer to the people of the Weaponsmiths Quarter in just a few days, no one really paid any further attention to what Yan Liqiang did in the Weaponsmiths Quarter. All of them felt that Yan Liqiang wasn’t just some immature troublemaker and furthermore was Qian Su’s nephew, so naturally, no one really wondered what Yan Liqiang did nor did they meddle in his business. As a result, Yan Liqiang frequently went to the mountains every day and people understood it that as a teenager’s nature so they didn’t really mind. It would be fine as long as Yan Liqiang didn’t set the whole mountain on fire.
But of course, this was all only on the surface. In reality, the life that Yan Liqiang led in the Weaponsmiths Quarter over these few days was actually the polar opposite of how it seemed on the surface. Although he might appear to be very free and idle in the Weaponsmiths Quarter to the rest, in fact, he actually didn’t slack off on his cultivation at all.
The bitter experience of being beaten down from the arena by Hong Tao and the fact that he was forced to flee to Huanglong County from danger was like a taut bowstring within Yan Liqiang’s heart. He didn’t relax at all but instead started cultivating even more diligently than ever.
The official Martial Arts County Trial Examination was only two months away. Despite the fact that he had failed in the preliminary exam, he was still eligible to participate in the official examination due to his past outstanding performance back in Liuhe Town. Even without the threat of the Hong Clan, Yan Liqiang would still strive to move forward for the sake of getting a good ranking in this martial arts examination. That was because this matter didn’t only impact his future as an individual, but also the earnest expectation that his father had for him over more than a decade.
The ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ had never been a part of the training regimes that Yan Liqiang had followed in the past. But after he realized the formidable power of the techniques that were recorded within, Yan Liqiang treated the ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ as the main regime in his daily training.
Every day, Yan Liqiang got up before sunrise to cultivate the ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ in the courtyard. Cultivating a single round of ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ took about two hours. After having cultivated it for one round and then practicing the Tiger Roaring Consecutive Fist technique for another few rounds, it would be just around breakfast time at the Weaponsmiths Quarter, so he would go to have his breakfast.
After he was done with breakfast, he would stroll around the Weaponsmiths Quarter for a while before ascending the mountain. Then on the mountain, he would continue to cultivate the ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’. This time, he would be able to complete two rounds of ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ cultivation before lunchtime.
After lunch, he would take the opportunity return to his own loft to nap and read.Until dinner time, he could cultivate ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ again for another two or three times.
After dinner, he’d hang back a little longer with the people of the Weaponsmiths Quarter before returning to his small courtyard again. Then he’d start focusing on squatting in Horse Stance for the sake of tempering it into the foundation of a Warrior. This would go on all the way until bedtime.
Just like this, Yan Liqiang would spend more than ten hours every day cultivating the ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ five or six times in the Weaponsmiths Quarter.
He didn’t dare to tell anyone about the secrets of the ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ because the effects of this secret manual were really too terrifying. As the saying goes: ‘treasuring a jade ring becomes a crime’. Yan Liqiang knew that he wasn’t capable enough to protect this secret and feared that the people around him would be put in danger should this secret ever be exposed.
Yan Liqiang gradually discovered that the growing amount of vigor he had within his body corresponded with the increasing amount of time he’d put forth in cultivating the ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’ in the wake of his daily cultivation. It was as if he had opened a treasure vault in his body, that boundless energy gushed forth like an underground geyser as it poured forth from within his body in a steady flow.
On the third day after he had officially started practicing this technique, Yan Liqiang realized that for the first time he was no longer drowsy after waking up in the morning to practice.
Although waking up to train his martial arts around 5 o’clock at dawn every day had already become a habit to Yan Liqiang, however, he was still a fourteen-year-old youth. He was honestly still quite sleepy when he woke up at this hour every morning ever since he started training martial arts. That warm blanket was still very attractive to him and waking up at this hour every day really wasn’t something to be joyful about. He was only able to persevere at getting up at this hour every day by relying on his own willpower and the habit he had acquired from being supervised by his father all this time; he had to clench his teeth to force himself up and then get into an energetic state by rapidly washing up and training.
But this time when Yan Liqiang’s biological clock woke him up on the third day of his new training regime, he discovered that his body no longer felt drowsy. Instead, his drowsiness had been replaced by an overflowing energy in his body and a clear mind. That warm blanket had suddenly lost its attractiveness to him within an instant.
After just a few days, Yan Liqiang subsequently discovered a series of changes that had started to occur within his body.
First, the quality of his sleep had become better. He was able to fall asleep faster, felt extremely comfortable and no longer dreamed while he slept.
Next, Yan Liqiang discovered that the amount of food that he needed to consume was gradually increasing. His appetite had increased. Everything he ate tasted especially delectable. Taking his lunch and dinner as examples, if he previously ate three bowls of rice per meal, then the amount of his intake had increased by thirty percent in just a few days into four bowls. Not only that, it was still showing signs of increasing…
Lastly, which was also the most obvious transformation, Yan Liqiang discovered that the physical quality of his body was rapidly enhancing in various aspects, especially the energy in his entire body. This transformation was most evident when he was practicing his fist techniques and the Horse Stance, especially the latter.
Prior to sustaining his injury, Yan Liqiang could last more than an hour when he assumed the Horse Stance before his body would start to tremble, despite having trained the Horse Stance for all these years. But from the fourth day after he started practicing the ‘Performing Muscle Tendon Changing and Marrow Cleansing Internal Cultivation Manual’, Yan Liqiang realized that the amount of time that he could hold his Horse Stance had started to increase. At the beginning, it was still not that obvious. But after more two days had passed, Yan Liqiang realized that it was gradually getting easier every time he assumed the Horse Stance, so the amount of time that he could hold it for had also obviously become longer. It increased day by day. This was originally the most difficult fundamentals, yet it had gradually become much easier. In only the span of a few days, the amount of time he could hold his Horse Stance had increased from more than one hour to two. It had doubled within just a short time…