Book 4 Chapter 4 - Engraving Into Memory Through Blood

A female professor walked quietly with a scroll in hand.

In front of her was a quite small mountaintop, around her a wild grassland that stretched as far as the eye could see.

Mountain winds blew through the knee-length grass, rising and falling like a wheat field.

This was an extremely poetic scene, but an arrow that descended from the skies shattered this peaceful scenery, adding a bit of an epic feeling to this scene.

This arrow was released from the mountaintop in front of her, descending between heaven and earth. The arrow was black-colored, drawing out a dark arc through the azure sky. However, because the speed was too fast, there was white air stirred around the arrow, forming an indistinct white wave, just like a falling comet.

After this arrow descended, another arrow was fired from that mountaintop, drawing out another black streak through the air, leaving behind white ripples, and then fiercely landing in a certain place in the wasteland.

The somewhat messy-haired female professor raised her head slightly, and then continued forward.

“Professor An.”

Lin Xi who was practicing his archery in the mountains immediately noticed An Keyi as well. Because An Keyi was even higher ranked than Tong Wei, when he saw this young female professor ascend the mountain and approach him, after showing the female professor an act of respect, apart from a bit of curiosity as to why she was coming here, he wasn’t too surprised.

The rather scholarly An Keyi returned Tong Wei, Lin Xi, and Bian Linghan’s greetings, and then she looked at Tong Wei, asking with her usual reading voice, “How is their training going?”

Tong Wei looked at the black longbows that were already starting to deform a bit after bearing excessive force, and then said with a sunken voice, “If Bian Linghan fires a test shot first, within ten arrows, five or six can barely hit a target three hundred steps below.”

An Keyi reached out a hand, gathering a few strands of scattered hair behind her ear. After thinking for a bit, she raised her head, looking at Lin Xi and saying, “Shoot at me with everything you have.”

Lin Xi was already quite familiar with An Keyi, and during the scene of the fire, he had personally seen An Keyi’s strength, so even though he didn’t understand the real reasoning behind why An Keyi would say this, both him and Bian Linghan understood extremely clearly that what him and Bian Linghan practiced right now, was to use Soul Knight strength to defeat a Soul Expert, while An Keyi’s cultivation was clearly above Soul Expert level. That was why he naturally knew that his arrow wouldn’t pose any threat to An Keyi. As such, he only looked at this female professor curiously, asking, “Right here?”

“Right here.” An Keyi nodded. Then, she turned around, walking close to a hundred steps, and then said to Lin Xi, “Go ahead.”

Lin Xi nodded, not saying anything else either, focusing on drawing the bow. An arrow roared out, shooting at An Keyi’s left shoulder with incomparable precision.

An Keyi didn’t move at all. Faint yellow light flickered by her left shoulder, with a pu noise, Lin Xi’s arrow left behind a hole in her academy professor black robes, but then it fell to the ground powerlessly. An Keyi’s body only swayed slightly, not injured much at all.

“Again.” Before Lin Xi could ask anything, An Keyi nodded towards him and said.

Lin Xi clasped another arrow, then drew the bowstring, aiming an arrow at An Keyi’s right shoulder.

He wasn’t trying to mess around with symmetry or anything, only thinking that even if it was through the academy’s training valley black armor, the body not suffering much damage, the impact will still bring a bit of pain. If both arrows were aimed at the same spot, it would naturally inflict even more pain, so he aimed at An Keyi’s right shoulder.

When the pitch-black arrow landed on An Keyi’s right shoulder, An Keyi’s shoulder still flashed with yellow light, but what immediately made Bian Linghan cry out in alarm, also leaving Lin Xi in disbelief, his entire body shaking, was that the arrow didn’t fall, bloody light instead spurting out of An Keyi’s shoulder.

Tong Wei’s eyebrows jumped slightly, but he remained silent, not saying anything.

The feathers of the arrow were shaking slightly. An Keyi reached out a fine white left hand, brows furrowed slightly, directly pulling the arrow out. Then, she stopped the bleeding, applying medicine in an extremely skilled manner, throwing this arrow back to Lin Xi afterwards.

“Previously, the amount of soul force I covered the surface of my body with was roughly equivalent to mid level Soul Expert soul force with the protection of ordinary soft armor, this time, the soul force I covered my body with was equivalent to a Soul Expert who only recently reached this level.” While looking at Lin Xi whose brows were furrowed deeply, An Keyi said with a voice that wasn’t that different from her ordinary reading voice.

“Thank you, teacher.” Lin Xi’s brows moved slightly, first giving An Keyi a serious bow of respect, and then lowering his head to look at the blood on the arrow.

Both him and Bian Linghan were extremely intelligent. That was why when An Keyi only said these words, the two already understood that An Keyi was doing this to give them the most direct observation impression.

Since the current emperor and Thunder Academy’s instructors all felt that true killing could increase one’s strength the fastest, then during this competition between the two academies, the five new students Thunder Academy selected and the weapons they used were definitely stained with much more blood. As such, they would clearly understand how the other party would react, how blood would splash out when their weapons struck opponents of the same level, or even higher level.

However, Lin Xi and Bian Linghan didn’t have this type of direct impression.

The two of them didn’t know what kind of damage would be inflicted when their arrows really hit a cultivator’s body, what kind of injuries were left behind, how much blood would flow out.

The power of arrows was something Tong Wei naturally understood extremely well, but if they only heard it from Tong Wei’s mouth, it was naturally not as good as this type of teaching by example, the blood flowing from her body leaving a deep impression in their minds.

Lin Xi looked at the pitch-black arrow in his hands, the two finger segment length arrowhead was covered in blood, but the pitch-black arrow shaft didn’t seem to have any sign of blood left behind.

He took a deep breath of air, and then looked towards An Keyi’s shoulder. An Keyi’s shoulder had a blooming flower- like wound. When he looked over, An Keyi raised this arm, waving it towards him.

This allowed both him and Bian Linghan to understand extremely clearly that with his and Bian Linghan’s current standard bow, they could roughly pierce two finger segment length into an initial stage Soul Expert’s body, but unless a vital area was struck, it might not really affect the opponent’s fighting strength. Meanwhile, when facing someone of mid level Soul Expert level cultivation, in this type of direct confrontation situation, there was no way they could defeat this kind of opponent.

“There is no need to feel discouraged. In the end, this will only be a competition with great restrictions… With your current cultivation, you are not limited to this type of standard bow at all, our academy has many stronger bows that are more suitable for you. If you all were truly rushing to the local regions or border army to carry out missions, with your cultivation and archery skills, equipped with the bows most suited to you two, even high level Soul Experts might suffer a fatal injury from your attack. What you two need to understand is that powerful archers will always be the most feared existences of cultivators.” While looking at Lin Xi and Bian Linghan who, after seeing her use her own body to receive the arrows, were a bit moved, but also a bit discouraged from seeing the lack of firepower, An Keyi calmly instructed, “It is precisely because of this that many cultivators won’t move alone, to the extent where there will be cultivators around powerful archers, specially to defend against the assassination of other archers and protect their own archers.” 

“This student understands.” Lin Xi took a deep breath. When he looked at An Keyi’s shoulder and the blood on the pitch-black arrow, he clearly understood that this was precisely the difference between Vice Principal Xia’s group and some others. Just like the fresh blood before his eyes, it made him feel humanity and camaraderie, making him feel even more that life was precious. However, the blood of those prisoners and captives, the ones whose lives were used to assist in Thunder Academy students’ cultivation, might only make them feel less and less pity for the weak, less and less respect for life. That was why when Helan Yuexi saw him for the first time, he only felt like he might be a threat, so his hostility immediately shifted to killing intent.

There were quite a few people in this world who deserved to be killed, but there are some situations where they don’t have to die.

“With the destructive power of this type of ordinary standard bow, if I was at the foot of the mountain right now, should you two use Falling Moon to attack me, if I was at the initial stage Soul Expert level, my body will most likely be pierced through.” An Keyi looked at Lin Xi and Bian Linghan, and then turned around to look at Tong Wei, “This type of joining together, if Lin Xi is the second one to release his arrow, making adjustments based on Bian Linghan’s shot, the accuracy shouldn’t be bad, but once the other party is alarmed, they will quickly make evasive movements. The further the distance, the harder it will be for Lin Xi to hit his opponent.”

After a slight pause, An Keyi’s brows furrowed slightly, slowly saying, “I just received news that the emperor will arrive at Four Seasons Plains tomorrow morning. How do you feel about them?”

Yunqin Emperor, someone who represented the highest authority of this world, was arriving tomorrow?

Lin Xi and Bian Linghan both took a deep breath, but they still couldn’t calm the restlessness they felt. This was a day earlier than even what Tong Wei predicted.

“The current situation is a bit awkward.” Tong Wei’s face also suddenly became overcast. Because this might involve life and death, he couldn’t speak the slightest misstatement before Lin Xi and Bian Linghan’s faces. He looked at An Keyi and coldly replied, “Lin Xi’s speed of improvement, even though it is fast… the amount of time is still too short. With his current archery level, if the height exceeds three hundred steps, it will be extremely difficult to accurately hit his opponent… It is just like what you said just now, the other party definitely won’t foolishly stand there, wait to be shot down, so these two might only have one chance to take action. However, if a shot is fired from a height of three hundred steps, if the other party’s cultivation level exceeds mid stage Soul Expert level, then this won’t be able to completely rob the other side’s ability to move.”

An Keyi nodded. “A height of three hundred steps is indeed not that high.”

Lin Xi thought for a bit, and then seriously asked, “If fired while we are on a small mountain three hundred steps above, and we hit a mid stage Soul Expert level cultivator, what kind of injury would be left on his body?”

“Perhaps just this bit more than the wound on my shoulder.” An Keyi reached out her fingers to use as comparison. Lin Xi and Bian Linghan could clearly see that it was just a fingernail length longer. A wound that was a bit deeper, for cultivators, wasn’t fatal, because it still couldn’t inflict serious damage.

“Approximately how many steps of height do we then have to reach before my arrow can penetrate a mid stage Soul Expert’s body?” Lin Xi’s eyes flickered slightly, seriously asking.

Tong Wei gave Lin Xi a look, saying, “At least five hundred and fifty steps.”

“Five hundred and fifty steps?” Bian Linghan’s face immediately paled considerably. After these days of archery training, she naturally understood extremely well that when arrows were shot with the Falling Moon technique, it would fall like a flung stone, like a falling meteor. When the height reached five hundred and fifty steps, the amount of distance it would cover while moving through the air would far exceed five hundred and fifty steps. If there was even the slightest deviation that happened during this process, once it began to fall, it was unknown just how much of a deviation it would produce.

Right now, Lin Xi’s arrows were a bit more accurate than hers, but he could still only keep the deviation minimal in a distance under three hundred steps. Once it exceeded four hundred steps, accurately hitting a target was basically impossible.

“Since there’s no other choice, then we can only practice a bit more.” While looking at the clearly somewhat worried Tong Wei and An Keyi, Lin Xi instead calmed down, saying this.

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