Back to the start of the sparring session.
“Let me warn you, I am now of 67 meridian points now. My strength is going to be very different from your opponent last week.” The burly student warned Yiqi. He was very proud of his advancement. It was said that as one proceeded on the path of cultivation, the growth at the later stages would be slower and harder. However, he had spent all of his Panther Tokens on herbs to increase his cultivation speed. His growth now could be considered as fast and furious.
Yiqi simply nodded as he gestured the burly student to attack.
“Watch out then!” The burly student roared as he unleashed his punch towards Yiqi.
Yiqi extended his palm as he attempted to block the punch.
Yiqi retreated a few steps as he rubbed his wrist. That punch was certainly not light.
“Hahaha, I had told you not to under-estimate my strength.” The burly student grinned as he was feeling extremely satisfied with his punch.
“Again.” Yiqi said calmly as he steadied himself.
“Oh?” The burly student raised his eyebrow. After examining Yiqi, he charged towards Yiqi again.
This time, his punch was being deflected by Yiqi’s swipe of hand. He unleashed consecutive strikes for several minutes, but every blow was being blocked by Yiqi. Every one of his attack was being defended by Yiqi efficiently. His punches were all being deflected by Yiqi with minimal effort. It was like Yiqi had pinpointed the weak points of all of his punches.
He was getting increasingly impatient as each minute passed.
Suddenly, he launched a kick towards Yiqi’s stomach, causing Yiqi to instinctively to kick against his feet. This resulted in Yiqi flying back for a few meters.
“I’ve got you now!” The burly student crouched down and instantly burst towards Yiqi who was still in the air.
When Yiqi saw this, he became alarmed. This was the Panther Charge! Yiqi was especially vulnerable in the air with no stable foothold. Moreover, his opponent was already charging towards him. Yiqi instantly gathered all of his inner strength to his arms and raised it to block the incoming attack.
After this huge impact, Yiqi was sent tumbling backwards a few rounds.
“Even if you are not critically wounded, your arm should require a few months to heal.” the burly student gloated as he walked towards Yiqi. He had unleashed all of his strength into that fourth stance of Panther’s Fist and he had executed when Yiqi was still vulnerable in the air. This could be considered as his final move, he was absolutely very nobody in this batch would be able to defend against this move. This was how confident he was in his strength! Other student could win him in terms of martial art skills, techniques, agility, speed or Qi, but strength-wise he was absolutely confident.
However, the burly student froze in his tracks when he saw Yiqi standing up looking fine. Other than some dust on Yiqi and some tears on Yiqi’s attire, Yiqi was uninjured. Yiqi stood up and adopted a defensive posture again.
How could this be!?!?
“Again.” Yiqi said in a soft tone as he motioned for the burly student to attack again.
“How is your arm ok? I am sure my punch landed on your arms!” The burly student shouted out in confusion.
“Yes you did.” Yiqi nodded his head.
“What is your meridian points?” The burly student started to suspect that Yiqi actually had a higher meridian point and was merely concealing his strength.
“60 meridian points.” Yiqi answered as he witnessed the burly student’s eyes widened in astonishment. In fact 60 meridian points was before including his 8 hidden meridian points.
“I am 67 meridian point!? How is this… How…” The burly student’s mind could not comprehend what was going on. His strength which he had been so confident of, had failed to overpower an opponent who was weaker than him. Logically speaking a 67 meridian point should trump a 60 meridian point.
When Yiqi heard this, he shook his head. Yet another martial artist who was blinded by the numbers again. Another martial artist who was blinding chasing these numbers and breakthroughs that they did not consolidate each of their new breakthrough strength. They ferociously devoured numerous amounts of medicinal herbs and constantly seek for breakthroughs. However, cultivation was never meant to be so rushed. It was supposed to be a slow and steady pace, to focus on consolidation of strength. Without a good foundation, the next breakthrough would have even less benefit.
This burly student who were so recklessly advancing in his meridian points without stopping and consolidate his strength, had lost so much potential strength. Each of his breakthrough now reaped lesser strength than his previous ones because of his weak foundation. Moreover, those lost strength could never be regained fully. How could one reach great heights if his foundation was weak and rushed.
“Yet another wasted talent.” Yiqi sighed as he looked at the burly student in pity.
“What do you mean by that?! Wasted talent?! I am only 14 years old and I am at 67 meridian point marble body! How many people can have such achievements? Even you, a 60 meridian point dare to call me a wasted talent?! You must be using some secret defence technique!” The burly student roared in anger. He had been called a genius the whole life, even in his small sect he was named a prodigy and in his class he was the strongest student. Now this sect-less peasant grew so cocky after blocking one of his attack and dared to call him a wasted talent.
“Do not think you can beat me just after blocking one of my attack. If you had balls, then receive this next strike!” The burly student’s eyes glowed with a killing intent. He was determined to make Yiqi pay for looking down on his strength. He would not kill Yiqi, but he would make Yiqi suffer and retract his words.
The burly student leap up into the air and curled up his body, like a coiled up spring in the air, ready to burst any moment.
This was the third stance of Panther’s Fist, the Hunter Descends! The coiled up body would explode towards its target with the assisting momentum of gravity. The destructive strength from this stance could not be under-estimated.
However, judging from the burly student’s poor control of his Inner strength, it was unlikely that he had decent mastery of any martial art skills. Everybody had a unique body and constitution, thus mastery of martial art skills could only be attained by one’s own enlightenment and efforts. One had to figure out the most effective way of distributing their inner strength to attain the maximum power of the martial art skills.
The teachings of the martial art skills only imparted the basic execution of the skills. Only after adapting the martial art skills to your own body and figuring out the most potent way of distributing your inner strength during the execution, then would you have mastered the martial art skills. Thus, comprehending a martial art skill could be said as just the tip of the ice-berg, only bringing out the basic power of the skill. Moreover, without a solid control of one’s inner strength, a full mastery of martial art skills would be almost impossible. And all of this was just concerning Inner Strength, martial art skills which Qi could be incorporated into had not been brought into the equation. This could be seen that the path of martial growth was not as simple as chasing numbers.
“Receive this!” A loud shout rang through the air as the burly student uncurled his body and suddenly exploded towards Yiqi. He resembled a panther launching from a tree branch downwards onto its prey.
However, Yiqi who had a more complete mastery of this stance, had already pin-pointed numerous openings which he could exploit. He could see that the burly student’s inner strength was incoherent.
Since the burly student wanted a contest of strength, Yiqi would not exploit the openings or dodge the attack. He would take the attack head on!
Yiqi gathered all of his inner strength, including his 8 hidden meridian points. He gathered all of his inner strength onto his chest, as he puffed out his chest to receive the attack straight-on.
The punch landed on Yiqi’s strength, but Yiqi’s face had no reaction. Yiqi’s footing was still stable, his chest was still puffed out and his face had no reaction. On the contrary, the burly student’s face gradually turned green and his fist that was on Yiqi’s chest began to swell.
“Ahhhhhh….” The burly student retracted his hand as he knelt on the ground and moaned. His fist had been shattered on that impact instead of Yiqi’s chest. He felt like he was punching a steel wall, an impenetrable steel wall. How could this be?!
Of course, Yiqi had gathered the maximum potential of the 60 meridian points and his 8 meridian points to his chest. Whereas, the burly student could only bring out a fraction of the 67 meridian points and could not concentrate them onto his fist. Therefore, it was like a glass smashing against the concrete wall. Of course the glass would shatter.
Yiqi turned around and saw Muyou waving madly to him. Muyou too had finished his match, and his opponent was lying on the ground appearing in a worse state than Yiqi’s opponent.
“STOP!!!!” A shrill scream rent the air. Everybody turned towards the source of the scream and saw Instructor Liu standing up looking flustered. The tea-cup in his hand was already shattered into pieces.