He didn't have an understanding of the Stone of True Breath at all, and the only way for him to get a clear gauge of the exact significance of a score of two and four was to try it for himself.
"Principal Zhang, you want to give it a try yourself?"
Beneath the dueling platform, the faces of School Head Mo and the others immediately paled.
They knew about the destructive tendencies of their principal—anything that came into his hand would be destroyed in one way or another. Unless Combat Master Zhuo didn't want his Stone of True Breath, it was best not to let that God of Destruction come into contact with it, or else it would be too late for regrets after the fact.
Seemingly hearing the voices in the school heads' hearts, Zhuo Qingfeng smiled courteously and said, "There is no need to trouble Principal Zhang with this. Chen Zhu, come over!"
"Yes!" Chen Zhu nodded before swiftly heading toward the Stone of True Breath. He placed his palm on it, and a brilliant burst of light flashed in the area. Following which, a number surfaced on the stone tablet—5!
"This means that Chen Zhu's zhenqi purity and physical strength has exceeded the required standard of four," Zhuo Qingfeng explained.
"Allow me to give it a try too!" Luoqing's Zhang Qingshan, who had been defeated by Chen Zhu's saber previously, walked over and placed his palm on the stone tablet as well. With a radiant flash of light, a number surfaced… 4.5!
Even though it hadn't reached Chen Zhu's level, it did meet the prerequisite to becoming a combat master.
"Let me try it as well!" Zhu Jian stepped forward and placed his palm on the stone tablet. A glow of light followed, 2.1.
"I am only 2.1?" Zhu Jian's face twitched in horror.
He was ranked fifth among the twenty Grade-1 candidates from Hongyuan, but he had only managed to attain a result of 2.1. Didn't that mean that the other fifteen candidates behind him would struggle to even reach 2?
It seemed like it would have indeed been impossible for him to become a combat master were it not for Principal Zhang's impartation.
"With this, I believe Principal Zhang should have gained some understanding of the Stone of True Breath!" Zhuo Qingfeng said with a smile.
Through the results of the three people, it wasn't too difficult to roughly estimate the gauge for the Stone of True Breath.
"Un." Zhang Xuan nodded with a frown.
Zhu Jian's strength could be considered to be at the forefront of most of the candidates, but he had only been able to achieve a score of 2.1 on the Stone of True Breath. If the other candidates were to take this test as well, it was highly likely that more than half would not be able to reach 2.
In other words, a minimum of forty candidates would be eliminated!
Zhang Xuan contemplated for a brief moment before eventually speaking up. "Combat Master Zhuo, is it possible for you to give me four hours? I wish to lecture my students for a moment first before allowing them to take the test!"
"Four hours?" Hearing Zhang Xuan's request, Zhuo Qingfeng was taken aback.
Even if it was really possible to raise one's combat techniques in a short period of time, surely zhenqi and strength would require accumulation over time!
A four-hour lecture… What could it possibly do?
Zhuo Qingfeng pondered for a moment before replying. "There is no need for that. It is already getting late, so why don't we conduct the test in the morning instead? This way, you will get the entire night."
Just assessing the candidates of the other three academies had taken eight hours, so by this moment, the sun had already set, allowing darkness to envelop the sky.
In any case, he had been given three days to complete the Combat Master Selection, so there was no need for him to finish it on the first day.
"That will be truly helpful, Combat Master Zhuo. You have my gratitude!" Zhang Xuan's eyes lit up.
Be it the physical strength or the zhenqi purity of Hongyuan's candidates, they were unimpressive. However, if Zhang Xuan had a night to lecture them, he was confident that he would be able to induce a metamorphosis in them.
"This isn't anything much. It will also be a blessing to the Combat Master Hall if we can bring talented fresh blood in," Zhuo Qingfeng replied with a smile.
"That's good to hear. Pardon me, but I will be taking my leave in advance. School Head Zhao and School Head Mo, I will be troubling you to make suitable arrangements for the three principals and their students and Combat Master Zhuo and his subordinates. I have to make full use of the limited time to conduct a supplementary lesson for these fellows!" Zhang Xuan instructed with a smile before leading the candidates toward the Elder Hall.
The Elder Hall had a formation to isolate auras and a formidable Spirit Gathering Formation. On top of that, it was also spacious enough to house a hundred people comfortably.
After Zhang Xuan left, School Head Mo and the others quickly took Principal Wo and the others to a night banquet to welcome them before eventually settling them into their accommodation.
After arriving at the Elder Hall, Zhang Xuan adjusted the Spirit Gathering Formation set up in the room to maximize its effects before scattering five hundred high-tier spirit stones around the room.
In the blink of an eye, the entire hall was already permeated with spiritual energy so concentrated that it caused the air to become viscous. Seeing that it had reached a satisfactory level, Zhang Xuan heaved a sigh of relief.
While raising one's physical strength and zhenqi purity might have been an arduous task for any other master teacher, that was not the case for Zhang Xuan.
After collecting countless physical body cultivation technique manuals from the Cultivation Compendium, he had already perfected the first four levels of the Quintuple Incandescence Golden Body into Heaven's Path tier, allowing one to cultivate them without the need for catalysts.
As for zhenqi purity, even if it was impossible for the students to cultivate Heaven's Path zhenqi like him, he could still impart a very, very simplified version of the Heaven's Path Divine Art to them. It would be easy and fast for them to cultivate, and it would help to refine their zhenqi to make it purer and more condensed.
"You all only have a night's time. How much you manage to improve will depend on your capability and diligence!"
After settling everyone down, Zhang Xuan scanned the faces of the students for a brief moment before starting. "I will now impart a physical cultivation technique to all of you known as the Quintuple Incandescence Golden Body…"
Zhang Xuan's voice was infused with the Impartation of Heaven's Will, inducing the students to drive the zhenqi in their bodies as per his words.
Wu Yangzi's Quintuple Incandescence Golden Body was extremely complicated, and even with the talents that these students wield, being the top twenty fighters in their respective grades, it would still require several dozen years of effort before they would be able to master it.
As such, Zhang Xuan had simplified it through the Library of Heaven's Path, making it significantly easier to comprehend and cultivate.
Immersed in their cultivation, the students' physical strength began growing at an incredible pace.
In the manor that King Huai had given Zhang Xuan, Zheng Yang stretched his back lazily as he walked out of his room.
After a day of cultivation, he had finally managed to digest everything that his teacher had taught him, thus inducing a significant rise in his fighting prowess.
Exhaling deeply, Zheng Yang suddenly recalled something and his eyes lit up. If I recall correctly, it seems like today is the day that the Combat Master Selection is held. It will be good to take a look!
He had heard many things about the legendary combat masters, and rumor had it that they were capable of easily matching opponents with cultivation far higher than them. As such, he was curious to see how powerful they were.
Zheng Yang took a look at Wang Ying, Liu Yang, and Wei Ruyan's room, and noting that they were still cultivating, he decided to head to the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy alone.
It didn't take him too long to arrive at his destination.
By this moment, the sun had already set, and the night banquet was already over as well. However, there were still many students from Hongyuan walking around the academy with excited looks on their faces.
Hongyuan had always been outdone by the other three academies in the Combat Master Selection. However, under the leadership of the new principal, they had finally managed to turn things around.
In this Combat Master Selection, their candidates managed to defeat even the combat masters themselves, and this made them feel extremely exhilarated.
From the discussions of the students around, Zheng Yang was able to gain a rough idea of what had happened in the day, and he chuckled softly in response.
Having followed his teacher from Tianxuan Kingdom, he knew that his teacher possessed astounding capability despite his young age.
Putting aside defeating the relatively weaker invigilators of the Combat Master Hall, he wouldn't be surprised in the least if his teacher were to train a group of experts that could overthrow the entire Combat Master Hall.
"Zhenqi purity and physical strength, these can only be accumulated through cultivating over a long period of time. Yet, that Principal Zhang actually thinks that he can raise the strength of his students through just a night of lecturing. He sure is delusional!"
"Indeed. In order to raise our zhenqi purity and strength, we had to go through so much suffering and pain! For one, we had to endure the insufferable heat from the Inferno Phoenix Saint Beast on the journey here, but even so, we were only able to raise our zhenqi purity and strength by just a bit!"
"Just because he achieved some success in his lecture on combat techniques, he thinks that he is the chosen one or something. Just wait and see how he makes a fool out of himself tomorrow!"
Walking along the street, Zheng Yang suddenly heard some irked voices.
Turning his gaze over, he saw a few young men dressed in peculiar master teacher robes walking along the road with disdainful sneers on their faces.
The students of the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy had humiliated their Combat Master Hall through and through. There was no way they wouldn't feel indignant about that!
It was one thing to learn that Principal Zhang had raised the prowess of Hongyuan's candidates through nothing but a lecture at the very last moment, but for the other party to actually hope of raising the zhenqi purity and physical strength of the candidates in a single night… Wasn't that nothing but a daydream?
Those were the foundations of a cultivator, accumulated only through diligence over time. If they could be raised that easily, they wouldn't have to be put through suffering after suffering in the Combat Master Hall.
"These brothers over here, please hold it for a moment!"
Hearing that those men were mocking his teacher, Zheng Yang frowned in displeasure. He immediately walked over and stopped them with his hand.
"What is the matter?" The young men frowned.
"It's nothing much. I just heard that the members of the Combat Master Hall possess superior strength, and I happen to be rather bored at the moment, so I wish to try your strength for myself to see if you are really as fearsome as the legends make you out to be!" Zheng Yang said calmly.
"You dare stop us despite knowing that we are from the Combat Master Hall? You must be tired of living!"
"To dare mock even us… Brat, you sure are arrogant, aren't you?"
These young men were already in a bad mood from the start, so upon seeing that even a youth around sixteen or seventeen dared to stop them to challenge them to a battle, they couldn't help but feel provoked and fly into a rage.
They were the powerful combat masters, existences who were respected regardless of where they went!
Yet, putting aside how their members had easily been floored by the candidates of the Hongyuan Master Teacher Academy, now, even a young child dared to behave so arrogantly before them. How could they possibly accept that?
"Whether I am tired of living or not, you will know once you give it a try…" Zheng Yang smirked as he whipped out a spear and flicked it with astounding prowess.
"Since you are the one who provoked us in the first place, don't blame us for getting nasty…"
Seeing the other party whipping out his weapon, the faces of the combat masters turned livid as well. One of them stepped forward and flexed his arms.
This combat master was at Ethereal Treading realm pinnacle, and he was in charge of assessing the Grade-4 candidates. With the frightening strength that he wielded, he had managed to subdue countless geniuses one after another in the selection earlier, instilling fear deep into their minds.
The combat master could tell that the young man before him possessed a cultivation of Chrysalis realm primary stage, so he decided to step forth to face him.
As a combat master, he was capable of challenging opponents with cultivation far higher than him. Given that the other party was only a cultivation stage stronger than him, it should be a walk in a park for him to defeat the other party.
Whipping out a sword too, the combat master said nonchalantly, while emanating a clear aura of confidence, "Make your move! I don't have any interest in bullying those weaker than me, so I will give you a three-move advantage!"
"You want to give me a three-move advantage? There is no need for that! I will suppress my cultivation to that of your level!" Seeing that the other party was still oblivious to the plight he was in, Zheng Yang shook his head and suppressed his cultivation down to Ethereal Treading realm pinnacle.
On the other hand, seeing how the young man who had come out of nowhere was so arrogant as to suppress his cultivation to face him, the combat master sneered coldly. "Hah, since you are that intent on meeting your maker, so be it!"
Flinging his sword abruptly, an incredibly powerful shockwave swept through the entire area before him.
Even though his cultivation was only at Ethereal Treading realm pinnacle, the might of this attack could easily leave Chrysalis realm pinnacle experts trembling in fear.
"Humph!" Facing such an attack, Zheng Yang simply sneered coldly. Not bothering to evade at all, he raised his spear and steered it forward with ferocious might.
As soon as the spear came into contact with the sword, the combat master was sent flying while coughing huge mouthfuls of blood. 5 Best Chinese Romance Books of 2018 So Far