Chapter 526 - Vicious Spirit

Chapter 526 - Vicious Spirit

Caught off guard by the deafening noise, Lin Yuhan jolted, throwing her wide gaze up at Tang Wulin. Isn’t he going to probe it first? He’s just going to start like that? 

Tang Wulin swiftly followed up with another booming strike, and the moment it connected, he rode the rebound momentum, spinning in place and delivering another strike with his hammers. He continued this technique, alternating between each hammer as he steadily forged the heavy silver. His pace was slower than when he had forged the blue coppertite, but each strike carried far more weight. 

Zhanggong Yan’s jaw dropped, his gaze quivering. That’s the Tang Sect’s Disorder Splitting Wind Hammer technique! 

Thunder crashed again and again. The room trembled. 

Upon the seventh impact, the heavy silver let out a burst of light. It was now hundred refined! 

Without pause, Tang Wulin continued on with the Disorder Splitting Wind Hammer technique. The greatest strength of the technique was how it built upon itself, each strike growing stronger than the last. Hammer after hammer slammed into the heavy silver, building a tempestuous song of metal. The picture of power. 

Even before such tyrannical might, the heavy silver showed no signs of damage. No signs of yielding. Rather, it shone more radiantly with each strike received. 

The sixteenth strike landed. Another beam of light burst from the heavy silver straight into the air, no less than two meters tall. Silver resplendence dyed the hall, close at chase with a draconic roar. It grew louder, rumbling as it did so. And in response, Tang Wulin’s piece of heavy silver shone even more brilliantly, resonating with the roar.

Having just finished hundred refining her piece, Lin Yuhan glanced up from her work. Her breath caught in her throat, the culprit the combination of Tang Wulin’s two golden soul rings and the golden scales creeping across his torso. 

A wave of might exploded from within him. His blood essence surged into his hammers, dying them a dull gold. 

Tang Wulin continued with the Disorder Splitting Wind Hammer technique without missing a beat. He struck down for the seventeenth time. Six booms shook the hall, each one successively louder. 

Howling winds accompanied Tang Wulin’s hammers as they whirled through the air. Draconic roars filled the hall with each strike. By this point, whether the roars came from Tang Wulin’s body or his thousand refined piece of heavy silver was indistinguishable. He was a storm incarnate. Nothing could stand before him! 

In fact, some of the more attentive spectators noticed that Tang Wulin’s forging table had sunk into the ground. How much force his hammers carried they could only imagine. 

The thirty-third strike landed and the hall shuddered, the boom ear-splitting. This time, instead of a roar, something more akin to a dragon’s snarl ripped through the arena. A phantom silver dragon erupted from the heavy silver. Its target, Tang Wulin!

Spirit-refining rebound? The spectators’ eyes went wide. Such a phenomenon was extremely rare. Nurturing life in metal came with the risk of birthing a vicious spirit as well. When such a situation arose, the metal became far more fierce and deadly weapons could be crafted from it. However, the chances of this happening were so low that only a life-nurtured spirit refining had it beat! There was also the risk of injury when spirit-refining rebound occurred, which can lead to failure in the spirit refining. 

Tang Wulin’s scales flashed brilliantly. Upon impact, the phantom dragon ricocheted with a wail. Still, it refused to return to the heavy silver. 

Cloaked in iridescent light, Tang Wulin stood in place, no longer whirling around. He raised his twin hammers high, body drawn taut like the strings of a bow, then unleashed a smite of thunder.

The dragon let out a mournful cry. Cowed into submission, it finally circled around the heavy silver.

Tang Wulin stored his hammers away in a flash of light. His body swayed, teetering back and forth, but Gu Yue made it in time to catch him before he collapsed. She gently lowered him to the ground, letting him sit down to meditate. In hindsight, Tang Wulin was just happy he had eaten a lot for lunch. 

He had spirit refined twice in a row. Two products of the highest tier. The first time he had nurtured life, and in the second ruthlessly fought down the rebound. Usually, accomplishing such feats was enough to qualify him as a sixth-rank blacksmith. In truth, he would have long since reached the sixth rank had Zhen Hua not demanded he succeed in spirit refining an alloy first. Tang Wulin’s actions today had showed himself to be the youngest sixth-rank blacksmith in history. 

But spirit refining twice in a row, especially two top-tier spirit refinings, left Tang Wulin exhausted. His soul power had been drained after the first round, so he had chosen to use the most forceful and tiresome method for the second, substituting soul power with blood essence in order to succeed. With his tanks empty of both soul power and blood essence, he felt utterly hollow. 

He wouldn’t have reached the thirty-third strike of the Disorder Splitting Wind Hammer technique if not for all the treasures he had eaten for lunch. While he would have normally made it further with the technique, this spirit refining required control in addition to power. Throughout the whole process, he had been toeing the line between exciting the heavy silver and damaging it. Taxing on both mind and body. But Tang Wulin had persevered. From the very beginning of the competition, he had resolved himself to win honor for the Blacksmith’s Association. 

Zhen Hua spared no effort in nurturing Tang Wulin and invested an immense amount of resources into his growth. Tang Wulin took his uncle-master’s kindness to heart. When this chance to repay that kindness appeared, he refused to let it slip through his hands. 

Ears picking up the mournful cry of the dragon, Lin Yuhan stopped forging and looked up to take in Tang Wulin’s work in awe. Her hammer no longer descended. 

In the first round, Lin Yuhan had finished spirit refining first. Yet Tang Wulin succeeded in spirit refining metal with a nurtured life, even if he had taken three times as long to finish. Now Tang Wulin’s second spirit refining shed light on his true forging speed. Although it was true that he was exceptionally familiar with heavy silver, Lin Yuhan knew the results of the match would not have changed even if she were to have shared the same depth of understanding for the metal. 

As Lin Yuhan stared at the meditating Tang Wulin, she could taste the bitter taste of loss. A total defeat. A fifth-rank blacksmith at her tender age, she had always thought herself to be a prodigy. For this reason, she had never expected another person her age to so thoroughly surpass her. No matter how unbelievable it was, she could not deny the truth.

Zhanggong Yan was dumbstruck, his mind grinding to a halt as it failed to understand what had transpired. Eventually, the shock eroded and comprehension of their defeat slowly came to him. Even a first-rank blacksmith could reach the same conclusion, especially since Lin Yuhan showed no signs of finishing her spirit refining. 

“It’s our loss.” Zhanggong Yan cracked a bitter smile. 

Zhen Hua smiled as well. “Well, we were really lucky. If Wulin didn’t happen to be here today, I don’t know if I would be able to find someone comparable with your disciple. Anyway, you’re welcome to join the Blacksmith’s Association. Or don’t. It’s up to you.” 

After a moment of hesitation, Zhanggong Yan nodded. 

But with that nod followed a red blur, shooting from behind Zhanggong Yan toward Zhen Hua. 

It was all too sudden. Despite his high cultivation level, Zhen Hua failed to sense the attack,  and also to react until the blur was right before him. His eyes burst wide open in that split-second, gut screaming out danger. 

Moments before it could strike him, he disappeared in a silver flash. Even so, the spectators weren’t as fortunate. The red blur continued on toward them, holding enough power to threaten a four-word battle armor master. Enough might to decimate the crowd.

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