You're Liu Zhu, a 14 year-old cultivator who's struggling to become the next patriarch of your family. Recently your older brother got engaged and pulled ahead in the succession race. Shortly after this an assassin targeted you, forcing you to go into hiding before you left for the Northern Wastes in disguise to undergo training.Right now you're in the Northern Wastes and you've fought a beast horde; found an artifact which gave you the bloodline of a "The Horned God", a sentient beast from long ago; and succeeded in becoming the disciple of Long Shi, a talented refiner. After this you traveled to the center of the wastes.After arriving at the center of the wastes you were attacked on a job to map out a forest, found yourself in the dangerous 12th Canyon, and took the valuable Red-Gold fruit. Now you've been recruited into Horned Island due to your pure bloodline by the clan's High Protector, who was sent Pastebin: https://pastebin.com/u/SecondPatriarchTwitter:: https://twitter.com/QmWalrusArchived Threads: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=Second%20Patriarch
A day has passed since you left 12th Canyon with Duan Tao, Feng Jun, and the unconscious Duan Jin. In that time you left 12th Canyon and entered Green City in preparation to leave. Apparently Horned Island and their three counterparts don't have any trouble crossing the Holy Lake because the beasts stopping most people from going too far in are descendents of the Scaled God. Scaled Palace has provided the other three clans descended from the nine gods with some sort of material that scares away their creatures, so each group has a fleet of ships which they can use to enter and exit their headquarters.On the way to Green City you...>found a chance to contact Zhu Chao with your sound transmission talisman and tell him what's going on. He's not as powerful as Duan Tao, but he's not much weaker so it would helpful having him here in case something happens.>didn't contact Zhu Chao, you should be fine.>OtherAfter arriving at Green City a servant was sent to retrieve the last of the things you left there, and you prepared to leave on a ship populated with specially-trained sailors loyal to the Green Tribe and Horned Island in the morning. While unpacking your things and examining your cabin, Duan Tao paid you a visit. "Well, now that we're done travelling I think this is as good a time as any to address what I've been waiting to ask. You declined to tell me what faction you were from before, but if I don't know anything it's harder for us to work together. If, for example, something called you back there and you had to leave Horned Island for several years and we didn't know where you were, that would be a headache. At the very least can I know some generalities like location and scale to plan for the future?" You...>tell him that your faction is within Yutian Country and smaller than the Five Families. That should be enough to work off of.>lie and tell him that you're from another country. In-case something happens it will allow you to easily leave.>tell him you're from the Liu family, it's not like he's going to leak that info, Horned Island is a hidden faction itself. It's best he knows now so that you have the chance to build cooperation between the two groups in the future.>lie and tell him that you're not a part of a faction.>lie and tell him your faction was too small, so you're leaving it for Horned Island.>Other
Only going to do a couple of updates tonight, just wanted to get the thread up now. Besides that, I have two questions:1. Is the OP image a bit better, I increased the font and added a black layer on 25% opacity to try to make the text stand out.2. I added a character sheet to the pastebin, have I missed anything you guys found important?/spoiler]
>>3690501>tell him you're from the Liu family, it's not like he's going to leak that info, Horned Island is a hidden faction itself. It's best he knows now so that you have the chance to build cooperation between the two groups in the future
>>3690501>found a chance to contact Zhu Chao with your sound transmission talisman and tell him what's going on. He's not as powerful as Duan Tao, but he's not much weaker so it would helpful having him here in case something happens.>tell him that your faction is within Yutian Country and smaller than the Five Families. That should be enough to work off of.
>>3690505The pastepin doenst work
>>3690777Fixed, my bad
I'll roll a tiebreaker on the second decision in two hours if there aren't anymore votes.
>>3690462Oh boi a new thread
Rolled 1 (1d2)>>3690559>>3690674
You're hesitant about telling Duan Tao which family you're a part of. Still, it's ridiculously unlikely he'll be connected to whoever tried to assassinate you, and this news won't spread out since Horned Island is a secretive faction anyways. At the most a few elders at Horned Island will know your true identity. "I belong to the Liu Family, they're in the Southwestern portion of Yutian Country."Duan Tao blankly stares at you for a moment before he snaps his fingers. "Demon General Liu Kang! I heard he settled down in that region after the war to found a family clan, but nothing after that." "...And if you could keep this a secret..." Duan Tao replies as you trail off. "Naturally, only a few elders will know at most. We wouldn't want any jealous parties to know where you are when you're not on Horned Island, or else it would suffer. As I said before, my motives in recruiting you aren't selfless, but now that I've recruited you there's no reason to endanger you. If you die then Horned Island strength lowers.After Duan Tao leaves the room, you read and think about things. You were able to fit in enough information to the duration of the Sound Transmission Talisman to make Zhu Chao aware of what's happening, but you wonder if he'll be coming himself. He could leave an elder in Green City to negotiate on your behalf, but that would mean revealing you're in the Northern Wastes. Therefore you think it's likely he'll come himself, but given that he's the pillar holding up the Liu family right now, you never know.You wake up the next morning and...>explore the ship with Feng Jun, it's pretty large and you've never seen the inside of one before yesterday.>bother Duan Tao to inform you more what's going to happen upon your arrival at Horned Island and people you may need to watch out for.>go fishing, you have nothing better to do.>hole yourself up in your room and read, there's always more herbs to memorize.>Other
>>3691260>>bother Duan Tao to inform you more what's going to happen upon your arrival at Horned Island and people you may need to watch out for.Ask what his granddaughter looks like and what she likes
>>3691260>bother Duan Tao to inform you more what's going to happen upon your arrival at Horned Island and people you may need to watch out for.
Duan Tao did spend a while talking to you about Horned Island, but it honestly felt more like a sales pitch than anything else. You should approach him and try to get more information while you're travelling. You left some time early this morning and the journey is supposed to around six or seven hours, so you'll have plenty of time to talk to him.You find Duan Tao's cabin and knock on the door. A muffled "Come in." comes from the other side, and you enter. "Highblood, what can I do for you?" "I was hoping to know more about what I'm jumping into once we arrive. Is there anyone I need to worry about?" "Anyone you need to worry about? I suppose there's Duan Jin's father and a few of the other juniors who will inevitably find a chance to challenge you. Duan Jin's father won't be able to do anything to you, but he'll try. His son is being robbed of his seat as Highblood and will be tried for attempting to kill you after all. He's on the council of elders, but he got in because of his son. Once you're inaugurated as Highblood he'll lose the position and be demoted to a normal elder. He's barely at Acupoint Opening, so he's no real threat. Just watch out for him. Besides that, find a chance to show your strength among the rest of the younger generation and you'll be fine.""What about your granddaughter? Is there anyone's envy I'll get once you make the relationship public? I understand that will be for a while yet, but it'd be nice to know ahead of time." Duan Tao laughs in response. "No, no, she's a good catch but mostly keeps to herself. Some people will be jealous, but as far as I know no one was still courting her besides Duan Jin. He never made any progress though, and he already hates you." ...Hearing this, you'd almost feel bad for Duan Jin if he hadn't tried to get the elk to kill you. He had his position stolen, resources promised to him taken from him, he'll likely be punished by the sect, and now he's losing the woman he likes. He truly is unlucky. "What about any hobbies? Anything I should learn about to make conversation?" "Oh, already studying up? Well, she mainly focuses on cultivation, but there are some novels she reads. I pick up the new releases every time I visit the mainland, I can tell you the titles later and have someone pick them up if you really want to read them. Besides that there's not much."Now that you've figured out any possible threats, you only have one question left. "What's happening after I meet the council of elders and they decide to make me the Highblood?" Duan Tao shrugs and answers your questions. "That's really up to you. The inauguration will take a while to be set up, but you can either have me show you around the island, train by yourself, or meet some of the other juniors. What are you interested in?" You tell Duan Tao that you'd like to...>be shown around the island later.>train by yourself once the meeting is over.>meet some of the other juniors on Horned Island once you have the chance.>Other
That's my last update for the night, heading out now. Longer session tomorrow.Also, I made a typo in an earlier post and said you arrived on the boat in the morning, I meant for it to be night. You don't just casually sleep 24 hours.
>>3691402>be shown around the island later.
>>3691402>>be shown around the island later.
Starting for the day in about an hour, woke up sorta late.
You'd like to be shown around the island after arriving. It will be more convenient the earlier you have a good lay of the land there, and you don't want to deal with more people after getting out of what will likely be a very long meeting with Horned Island's council of elders. "After we're out of the meeting I'd like to look around." Duan Tao nods and tells you that he'll get someone to show you around the place while he deals with things behind the scenes.You talk for a bit longer before returning to your room, and a few hours later you hear some noise from the deck. You go there and can faintly see land in the distance. As you look around, Feng Jun and Duan Tao both come up onto deck. "Is that Horned Island?" "Yes, it is. Once we get closer you'll be able to see the smaller side islands." Over the course of the next hour the island comes into full view, buildings being visible through the trees. A large set of docks are at the front of Horned Island, and later you see some smaller islands which also have their own docks.The ship docks and you see people begin to gather around. Duan Tao stretches and then turns to you. "Now that we're docked it's time to start my plan. You'll walk alongside me with Feng Jun behind, and next to him will be Duan Jin, handcuffed. There will definitely be people here to greet me and Duan Jin since we should've returned around this time with the Red-Gold fruit, so that means the news about your bloodline and Duan Jin being in some sort of trouble will spread, helping force the council of elders to go along with me." After Duan Jin says this you...>do nothing, you have no objections to this.>ask if you're going a bit too harsh on Duan Jin, his immediate relatives are going to have an irreconcilable grudge with you at this point.>Other
>>3692903>>do nothing, you have no objections to this.>Ask if he'd like for you to wear your antlers out?
Duan Jin's family will probably hate you for what's going on here, but that will be the case either way. Showing a bit of kindness now isn't going to help you. "Antlers out I assume?" "Naturally." You nod and begin to grow yours. After having them out for five weeks straight, you don't have a problem using them during the day. After a short wait everyone is ready and the four of you exit the boat. The small throng of people outside are rendered silent upon seeing your group, and you see them glancing between you and Duan Jin, confused. Duan Tao politely greets them and they greet him back. Duan Tao smiles as the two of you walk away and turns to you. "We'll wait in my home for an hour or two for the news to spread, and then we'll go to the council of elders."Duan Tao takes you to the center of the island, which is a relatively short walk. There you see two large mansions, and around a dozen smaller, but still sizable, houses. "The one closest to us is my home, while the other one is the Highblood's mansion. Do you want to assume control now? I could always switch the staff out later, but if you'd prefer to have the staff in place stay, you can head over there." Duan Tao smirks as he says this, as if he's expecting something interesting. You...>decline and tell him you'll wait in his house. You have little interest in whether the staff is switched or not, and you're not even the Highblood yet.>tell him you'll head over there and inform the workers that you'll be living there from today onwards. No need to be too heavy-handed, but you may as well prepare them.>take Duan Jin and go to tell the staff what's happening. The only way to make them understand is with evidence.>Other
>>3693040>>tell him you'll head over there and inform the workers that you'll be living there from today onwards. No need to be too heavy-handed, but you may as well prepare them.
May as well head over to the Highblood's mansion then. You're not going to try to make a 'show of force' by dragging Duan Jin over there, but you'd prefer if the place had the original staff. It makes sense that the staff there would already be most adept at running the place, so whoever they found to replace them would be slightly more inconvenient. To do that, you'll need to show yourself before anyone thinks to resign.After waiting for 15 minutes, figuring that the news about Duan Jin will spread to his mansion quickly, you approach the gate. The guard at the gate has a cultivation you can't sense, but upon seeing you approach the mansion he tenses up. "I'll be taking over as Highblood soon in place of Duan Jin, can you open the gate?" The man pauses and seems to think about something before just standing still. "Didn't you hear about what happened at the docks? Wouldn't you prefer to keep your cushy position here at the Highblood's mansion?" The man stands there for a moment before reluctantly opening up the gate.You pass through a well-maintained garden and enter the mansion. There's a small group of staff talking in the entranceway, and you greet them the same way you did the gatekeeper, telling them that you'll be taking over as Highblood. Most of them are silent, but one woman lashes out at you. "How arrogant! Your bloodline may be pure, but nothing has been confirmed yet and you're busting into the mansion and manhandling Duan Jin! You scoundrel!" She's probably closely related to Duan Jin. You'll keep that in mind, if she's this loyal then maybe it'd be best to replace her. You don't want any knives held at your back. "Isn't it more arrogant to try to kill your competitor while the High Protector is watching? If it wasn't for Duan Jin's aggressive actions, the two of us could have returned on amiable terms. I wanted nothing but to be friends when we first met." After saying this the staff that enter the room say nothing, and the woman from before bites her lip before leaving. "Anyways, I just came here to introduce myself and look around a bit. We'll be working together from now on, so I'm looking forward to getting to know you." As you say this you begin looking around the mansion, killing time until the meeting with the council of elders.By the time you finish looking around it's almost time to go to the council of elders, and so Duan Tao and you make the comically short walk to where they meet. Upon entering all the elders on the council are there, having heard about the matter. There are six of them, and all of them are glancing at you. Most of them are looking at you in surprise or curiosity, but one is doing so with pure, unfiltered rage. You guess he's Duan Jin's father.
The two of you seat yourself, and almost immediately Duan Jin's father demands to know what's going on. Duan Tao begins weaving a story about finding you after arriving in Green City due to the blood testing they found there and then bringing you along with them to 12th Canyon. There you saw the guardian of the Red-Gold fruit and Duan Jin tried to get it to kill you with the command seal because he feared for his position. Luckily the beast, awed by the purity of your blood, refused to. Duan Jin was locked up to prevent another incident, and the four of you came to Horned Island.The council stays mostly silent throughout the story, and you don't chime in to correct the omissions, knowing it's to assist you. After saying this it moves to discussion of whether you should be Highblood, and with Duan Tao taking the lead half the council begins earnestly supporting you. The rest are on the fence due to your status as an outsider, while Duan Jin's father seems to be taking every opportunity he can to curse you. The discussion continues for an hour, although it seems partially feigned, and in the end they vote inaugurate you as Highblood 6-1. Naturally Duan Jin's father voted against you, and Duan Jin himself isn't here to vote. After the voting ends you...>take your leave and get Duan Tao to show you around the island.>ask Duan Jin's father if he's willing to apologize to you for the hurtful things he said. He spent the past hour insulting you while you kept quiet, so you'd like some revenge.>turn the matter to what's going to happen to Duan Jin, it's best to take care of this as quickly as possible.>Other
>>3693275>>take your leave and get Duan Tao to show you around the island.Stay above the small people, our blood is so pure we can not bother with them.
You don't want to deal with Duan Jin or his father, any problems with them can be taken care of by the council of elders or Duan Tao. Duan Tao and you leave the room and pick up Feng Jun before he begins showing you around the island. "Near the center of the island we have the manors for the most important elders, the Highblood, the High Protector, the building where the council of elders meet, and other important facilities. It's the core of Horned Island. Surrounding that we have where the core disciples live, the shops, and and the square. The square is a large gathering place with a single arena for events."Shops? Doesn't Horned Island control the entire area- why would there be shops? Curious, you inquire further, and he explains. "It's annoying to constantly go to the five cities to pick up materials constantly, so we have anything that's needed for sale on the main island. Besides that we obviously have food and other essentials stored. We make major runs every month to gather resources from the Green Tribe." Well, that makes sense. It would be annoying to make a day trip on a ship to go shopping every time you needed something. It's not like everyone here owns a ship either. "Where are the training facilities?" "They're all concentrated on their own island. It's naturally rich in wood-elemental energy, and in our heyday we paid an array master to concentrate the energy further. Now it's where our training facilities are concentrated. We have a library full of techniques and several training grounds there." After this you go to the edge of the island, where you're shown the many docks and ships and the homes of the inner disciples. "Surrounding this we have several other islands. They're where the outer disciples and other miscellaneous people live. Feng Jun, you'll be given a position there as an outer disciple for the time being." Upon hearing this you...>push for Feng Jun to be made an inner disciple, it shouldn't be a big matter given your new position.>let him stay as an outer disciple and continue your tour, if Duan Tao thinks that's where he should go you're fine with it.>OtherIt's a little dead today, I'll be back in a couple of hours.
>>3693536>>push for Feng Jun to be made an inner disciple, it shouldn't be a big matter given your new position.He's stuck to us and has done right by us, do him a solid And yes it's dead as hell right now
>>3693536>>push for Feng Jun to be made an inner disciple, it shouldn't be a big matter given your new position.
I think he has earned his keep. With one last push we will insist on him being made an inner disciple. It should give him much better cultivation resources. Thereby getting on of our guys upwards towards the ladder faster. I say we get this new cultivation technique and our antlers powers situated first. Sooner we hit blood and viscera the sooner we take that fruit and gain a nice boost in blood purity and faster training.
>>3693661I agree our man deserves nice things and he's going to be loyal to us, honestly I wouldn't mind staying here for the 9 months we have left, with all this nature energy and resources we could go back home on a whole other level
Feng Jun has helped you out quite a bit since you arrived in the Northern Wastes and it's not hard for you, so you should try to help him out and push for him to be made an inner disciple. "High Protector, don't you think outer disciple is a bit too low a position? I think Feng Jun qualifies to be made an inner disciple." Duan Tao pauses for a moment before sighing. "I suppose. Feng Jun, stay in a vacant residence for tonight and I'll have someone help you fill out the paperwork to get settled here tomorrow. If I'm to be completely honest you're lacking, but you're not too far below the worse inner disciples after consuming that. You'll catch up in time."After this Duan Tao shows you both around the area in a bit more detail instead of giving you vague descriptions. After you're done with that it's almost sun-down, but you insist on being shown the training island before you leave. Duan Tao charters a small boat and it begins travelling the short distance between the two islands. "The main island of Horned Island is Yi, and the one we're heading to now is Er. The outer disciples live on San, Si, and Wu, and besides that we have a few minor outposts and fishing ports. There's also one more island, but it's a memorial. It's where we bury our Highbloods and High Protectors, and almost no one goes there. You'll have to some time after the inauguration, but let's not dwell on that for now."A dozen minutes pass, and you reach Er, the training island. After stepping foot on the island your body feels more energetic, and you can only imagine the effect is more pronounced for those at Meridian Opening. "On this island there are the training grounds, the battle library, the arenas, and the closed-door cultivation rooms. You're free to use any of the facilities as you wish. Feng Jun, tomorrow you'll be told what resources you're entitled to and what areas you can use for how long." Now that you're on the training island you...>go home for now and rest, it has been a long day.>check out the battle library, you do need some new techniques.>look at some of the training grounds.>Other
>>3693894>>check out the battle library, you do need some new techniques.
>>3693894>>check out the battle library, you do need some new techniques.What are you guys interested in? Obviously, any techniques that have to do with our weapon. But I am thinking of an upgrade to our dodge and speed techniques. We take the two best ones that they have in stock. But what do you guys think about one for if we lose our weapon? like a grapple or a fist technique?
>>3693971I'm more intrested more battle moves, our only real attack is our desires. Something to bust out in combat would be nice.
>>3693971>Obviously, any techniques that have to do with our weapon.Yeah, I am sure with their history they have to have picked up/created several over the hundreds if not thousands of years the tribe has been alive. I also think we should really only pick up the highest tier that we can find. We may even be able to find the rest of 72 desires here. Which even if it's not the highest tier we can find we should pick it up.
>>3693974meant to link to you, and just quote myself...lolBut yeah considering how much of a deadly weapon this is, of course, we pick up a technique we can find that is compatible with our weapon. that's always a good thing. We've also got to start training sooner rather than later. I am sure there will be an upstart or two that will want to fight us and try and put us down. ;-;
>>3694058Oh yeah I'm game to grind out on this island, we just found the holy land for our growth as a cultivator
>>3694058>we pick up a technique we can find that is compatible with our weapon.Not that hard honestly. Because of how a guandao is you can adapt techniques from most polearms, especially heavy ones. Also long axe stuff. A guandao is just a heavy as fuck glaive, really.
"I'd like to see the battle library first. I've been looking for some new techniques." "Mm, alright. You have open access to everything there besides what's exclusive to the elders. It's not that I mind you looking, but there are certain... follies of youth. One of them is wasting time on battle techniques you're not qualified to learn yet instead of focusing on things of your level. I was once guilty of that myself, but I digress." It's a short walk to a decently sized building roughly in the shape of a pyramid. You can see that it has four levels from the outside, and each level the walls draw inward.You enter the battle library and mostly see a lot of books. An old man is sitting at the counter inside, and he pays his respects to the three of you when you enter. "This is the first floor, and it's where the techniques for outer disciples are held. Above that is the floor for inner disciples, and then the one for core disciples. At the very top is the elders' floor. Among the floors there are certain subdivisions, but that's the rough pattern."Duan Tao tells Feng Jun that he's free to examine the jade slips and books on the first two floors, and then begins walking around. He walks around from one place to another, only stopping for a moment to grab jade slips and books. He goes through the first two floors before stopping, holding a handful of jade slips and a few thin books. "These are some techniques on how to use our bloodline, observations on using it from elders and Highbloods of long ago, and the two core cultivation techniques we practice. These aren't particularly exclusive techniques, but they're fundamental. Look over all of the jade slips and books, and choose one of the cultivation techniques. The first one leans towards the wood-element with a focus on using it in relation to the soft-hard laws once you reach Soul Foundation, and the other focuses on using it alone. There's not a large difference in practicing them up until them. After glancing at the two jade slips you...>take the cultivation technique that will focus on using the wood laws in relation to soft-hard laws.>take the cultivation technique that will focus on the wood laws alone.After handing you the jade slips Duan Tao excuses yourself and leaves you to look around. You're free to take whatever you want for the time being, but you naturally only have limited energy to learn battle techniques.>What do you look for?
>>3694082Can you explain the diffrence between those two cultivations? I'm confused Oh and I want to look for some combat techniques like our desires, something offensive.
>>3694097Once cultivators reach Soul Foundation, or occasionally slightly earlier, they're able to begin trying to study the mysteries of the "heavenly dao", which effectively makes up the entire universe. Once one begins making insights into the laws of the heavenly dao they're able to harness various phenomena. For example, a cultivator talented in the fire laws might be able to create an inferno around themselves and resist flames, while a cultivation talented in water laws could part water or create rain. You don't understand this too deeply as it's far beyond your cultivation realm.So yeah, one of the cultivation techniques is focuses on the wood laws with a slight lean towards hard-soft laws, which probably means that you'll have an easier time glimpsing into the basics of these laws once you reach Soul Foundation. Meanwhile the other one is focused only on wood laws, being more effective in that but not giving the cultivator any advantage in comprehending hard-soft laws. Up until then there aren't many differences.
>>3694097i agree.But just so you know we picked 72 desiresfor its defensive purposes if I remember correctly.
>>3694125>>take the cultivation technique that will focus on using the wood laws in relation to soft-hard laws.Ok this one is my choice then
>>3694082>>take the cultivation technique that will focus on the wood laws alone.I would rather find a law that best compliments us along the way to us gaining strength. Find our own way in nature kind of thing. >What do you look for?I think a new top tier speed and dodge technique is in order. Also, could you give us 2-3 options for a technique specific to our weapon?
>>3694146Fuck I'll change my cultivation vote to yours to prevent any voting trouble. It was pretty close in my head anyway
>>3694159Yeah, it was close for me too.
>>3694159>powerful strike that is used as an all-out finishing blow.>unexpected, and slightly underhanded, a technique which can catch opponents by surprise.>barrage of blows which can deflect some projectilesAnd we got 72 desires via Barrage of blows. We were thinking it was more of a utility technique. And we would find something like a power move we could eventually pick up. I guessThis is our chance. and an overall upgrade to our current techniques is what I am thinking. And we focus on those things. Other things are supplementary. We should focus on getting these to a good level. Speed/dodging and attacking. We should need to train them for a while is what im thinking.
You take the cultivation technique relating wood laws to the hard-soft laws, putting the other one aside. After that you begin looking through offensive techniques and movement techniques. Minute Deftness, the technique you got from Zhu Chao, is fine, but the movement technique you bought in Border City is lacking. After looking around for a while you find a good movement technique on the third floor. As you're getting ready to pick it, you remember that there was also a technique that enhanced your speed in the jade slips relating to your bloodline that Zhu Chao gave you. There was one that focused all of the bloodline's power towards the legs, and with your bloodline's strength it would be sufficient to be a movement technique. You...>use that instead of what you found, it's easier to learn than this one.>take the other movement technique, if you use the one related to your bloodline it would be difficult to use anything else relating to it at the same time.After that you look at offensive techniques and find several for polearms. One of them is a blow that uses the momentum behind the weapon to spin in circles, clearing away groups of enemies around the user. The other is similar to the blow that dislocates your shoulder that you found in Border City, but the movements are far more refined and it manages to draw out far more force from the action. The last one is a series of nine slashes that slowly build up momentum, aiming to create a series of powerful strikes. You...>take the technique that spins the weapon in circles.>take the technique that dislocates your shoulder.>take the technique that's a series of blows.>take multiple (they will take more time to learn).After that you...>leave>look for more techniques (say what)I'll be back in a while for a last update or two, currently the apocalypse is happening on another board
>>3694244>>use that instead of what you found, it's easier to learn than this one.I will pick this if we do not have to have our antlers out. If we don't have to have our antlers out for this bloodline technique. If not the other one. >take the technique that's a series of blows.I think we would be better off with this one powerful hit. >>3694244I thought we picked the wood laws alone cultivation technique. Over this one. But I am fine with this if no one else cares.
>>3694244>>use that instead of what you found, it's easier to learn than this one.>take the technique that's a series of blows.
>>3694256You're right, I read the person changing their vote the other way around.
>>3694244>use that instead of what you found, it's easier to learn than this one.>take multiple (they will take more time to learn).Just the dislocating one and the series of blows.>look for more techniques (say what)Maybe a defensive technique.
>>3694261Yeah honestly I'm ok with either its along time before it matters, in another note would we be aloud to to twavmch our kids this cultivation technique? And is it better then our clans old one?
>>3694256>>3694261Could we get a clarification on the antlers thing?>>3694244>>take the technique that spins the weapon in circlesWe are Lu Bu now..
>>3694283The movement technique related to your bloodline? It effectively uses the majority of it to subtly adjust the muscles in your legs, dulling the other aspects of it but increasing your speed even more than it normally does. Anyways, I'm back and will tally the votes in a minute, I had to back up stuff.
You'll stick with the movement technique related to your bloodline for now. The antlers are... large, but there should be some sort of technique to help hide them. Or you could just wear a massive hat. Anyways, now that you're already recruited it's not like it matters much if your antlers are spotted during a fierce battle. It's not like they can refine the blood out of you- you aren't The Horned God, there's a massive amount of normal blood mixed with it.You take the "Nine Gusts Halberd" and remember where the other two techniques were. Maybe if you have time you'll go back to them. After gathering your techniques you return to the first floor, where you see Duan Tao reading by a staircase downwards while Feng Jun glances at a few jade slips. You...>return to your mansion, you have plenty of stuff to work on for now.>go to see the training grounds.>ask what's downstairs.>OtherI'm out for now, I'll update once before I go to sleep. Thanks for voting, have a good one.>>3694277It is better, although it's not a huge difference on its own. The reason you're taking the effort to switch is that it complements your bloodline and the seed near your heart, as it seems related to the wood-element. You can give it to any children you have if they enter Horned Island. If they don't, there would likely be negotiations to do so.
>>3694512>go to see the training grounds.So do we have the plain wood laws technique, or the one relating to hard and soft laws? I'm a bit confused.
>>3694535plain wood laws, I misread who changed their vote the first time, i'm dumb sometimes
>>3694512>>go to see the training grounds
>>3694512>>go to see the training grounds.
You want to check out the training grounds before you leave. Maybe you won't have time to use them now, but you'd at least like to look. You tell Duan Tao this and he begins leading the way.The three of you exit the battle library and begin walking through well-paved paths through the constant forest. Occasionally you'll see a deacon or someone else who works for the tribe standing by a sign and a hut, and Duan Tao will explain what training ground that's the entrance to. "That training ground is for testing the abilities of one's bloodline. It tests sense of smell, the ability to see and distinguish colors in the near-complete darkness, and a few specific techniques that you'll learn later. The one up ahead is for practice fighting and moving about on horseback, although that's somewhat of a misnomer given that most of us ride elk and deer. Past that we have the waterfall, where one can resist extreme pressure to attempt to temper their body." This continues as you go past each area, and you're surprised by how many types of training are here. "There's the target forest. We had a large amount of carpenters and blacksmiths work there a long time ago, and they created a bunch of targets that will randomly pop out for seconds at a time. The goal is to attack as many of them as possible without stopping. That big clearing over there is the entrance to the sparring grounds, that's where we hold normal spars between juniors. Tournaments and important fights are held elsewhere." Among all of these practice grounds they do have some ordinary places to test one's swordsmanship and stuff like that, but this is what stands out. After being shown around it's beginning to get dark. You...>return home, you should make sure everything is fine there and then sleep.>practice at one of the training grounds. (Name one)>go back to the main island and meet some of the other juniors here, some of them should be out and about.>Othergood night
>>3694741>>return home, you should make sure everything is fine there and then sleep.We should get back to our high blood house and look through all of our new training techniques. Which does what? And what techniques will we learn with all of our blood like techniques? We should then focus on cultivating and/focusing on hiding our horns especially.
>>3694741>>return home, you should make sure everything is fine there and then sleep.
>>3694741>return home, you should make sure everything is fine there and then sleep.Just to make sure Duan Jin's dad didn't or doesn't pull some shit while we were gone to make life hard for us.
>>3694741>return home, you should make sure everything is fine there and then sleep.If someone tried to assassinate us,I'd really hope it would be with poison.
>>3694741>>return home, you should make sure everything is fine there and then sleep.I'm waiting for a pissed off family to attack us. I'm also waiting for a bunch of family's to throw there daughters at us, trying to get at our sweet sweet blood
>>3695042I wonder if poison resistance is a product of our pure blood or a coexisting benefit. If it's the former then we could rule out poisons as a method or worry about super-toxins potent enough to kill even a highblood.
>>3695252We where poisoned before we came north. It's a benefit of our wood bloodline
>>3695252>Don't check your food for poison>Familie dieseh
Now that you know more about the training grounds available, you're ready to return home. You can start looking over all of these jade slips and training. The three of you take a boat walk and Feng Jun is shown to a vacant home on the island, while Duan Tao and you return to your manors. You part and Duan Tao tells you to meet with him in a couple of days to speak about your official inauguration as Highblood.When you approach your home, the gatekeeper walks up to you, a worried look on his face. "Er, Highblood, there's been a problem." ...Fuck, this is going to be annoying. "What problem?" "Well, some of the employees loyal to Duan Jin have left, and, er... they took some things with them." "What things?" "Paintings, vases, all the food in the pantry, basically anything that would be annoying. It can be replaced, but it will take time and money." You...>tell the gatekeeper it's fine, if this is best revenge Duan Jin and his father can get than you're relieved.>ask the gatekeeper why he wasn't able to stop this.>tell him to make up a list of everything that was lost and send for it to get replaced.>tell him to make up a list of everything that was lost and report to Duan Tao in order to arrest the servants behind this. You're not putting up with bullshit, no matter how small.>Other
>>3695572>ask the gatekeeper why he wasn't able to stop this.Not in accusatory way, actually curious>tell him to make up a list of everything that was lost and report to Duan Taojust inform him about this and have second list ourself
>>3695572>>tell him to make up a list of everything that was lost and report to Duan Tao in order to arrest the servants behind this. You're not putting up with bullshit, no matter how small.Fuckers
>>3695596You can't do nothing about this is makes us look weak, we need to save our face
>>3695252I'm pretty sure our poison resistance is from that weird seed thing we got from falling on the twig of destiny.
>>3695610>twig of destinythis amuses me>>3695252but yeah, it's not a secret, I said in some of the narration in Thread #1 that the itching came from tiny wounds constantly opening and then healing in your body, it's from the ridiculous vitality the seed gives yousomeone would probably have to poison you with poison strong enough to kill someone in Soul Foundation or Soul Cleansing to actually kill you right now
>>3695628That twig shall be honored forever
>>3695572>>ask the gatekeeper why he wasn't able to stop this.>>tell him to make up a list of everything that was lost and report to Duan Tao in order to arrest the servants behind this. You're not putting up with bullshit, no matter how small.We will not be slighted. We should put on a strong show of force. Sadly Feng is not strong enough to do much. But if we can offer him a job for one of the positions we lost closest to us it would be wise. If his new position as an inner disciple allows it. May even be able to get him a better salary along with his monthly allowance.
You're not dealing with this bullshit, if you let this go without any trouble now then this is going to bite you in the future. First, you need to know whether you need to replace the gatekeeper. "How'd they get past you? Were you on break or something?" The gatekeeper looks nervous, but explains. "I'm mostly here to receive visitors, so I don't really make rounds. They climbed over the wall on the other side of the yard and a few of them disappeared without anyone spotting them." Alright then, you guess it isn't really this guy's fault then. "Have the staff left draw up a list of everything that's lost and hand it over to Duan Tao. Tell him to go after the ones who left and punish them for it, I'm not letting this go."The man hurriedly follows you in, gathering the remaining staff and briefing them on the situation, as you go up to your room. It is spacious, but notably missing a bed. There was definitely one here earlier, but it's gone. You go to the guest rooms, hoping they wouldn't have remembered, and notice that none of them have beds either. There are the staff rooms, but stealing a bed from the people working here is a bit much. You guess you'll just go without one for tonight. You begin glancing through the jade slips on bloodline techniques, getting the gist of them. One of them is for enhancing sight, another for smell, and so on and so forth. There are a couple on riding or training deer descended from The Horned God, which Horned Island has quite a few of, and various other things. Most of them aren't useful in a straight-forward fight, but they're helpful nonetheless.You sleep on the floor after glancing through all the jade slips and books again and putting them somewhere for safe-keeping. You wake up early that morning, not wanting to sleep in when you're clothed, on the floor, without a blanket. You get up, are given breakfast from the pantry that was just now restocked, and then...>begin practicing the movement technique related to your bloodline.>begin practicing the miscellaneous techniques related to your bloodline.>start practicing the 'Nine Gusts Halberd' and adapting it to the guandao.>go to one of the training grounds (say which)>go to the square and see if anyone else is up early.>Other
>>3695865>>go to one of the training grounds (say which)The island where the wood element array is set up. And try cultivating our new cultivation technique. See see how we ad with it. Along with any subtle differences we notice.
>>3695865>>begin practicing the miscellaneous techniques related to your bloodlineOur sexy horn hiding techniques.
>>3695926Its training our boner hiding technique along with out smell, and darkness?
>>3695876I'll just go with this if no one else votes QM
You guess you'll start practicing these bloodline-related techniques first. They'll take less time to start learning individually, but they add up to quite a bit. It's a both a shame and a surprise to you that there isn't anything that will hide these antlers completely. There is one technique that draws them in partially, but it also reduces the usefulness of the bloodline considerably. The antlers are a manifestation of the bloodline, and if you're trying to draw them in, then naturally the power will also be partially reigned in.You decide to head to Er, but don't use any of the training grounds there. You'll just find a secluded spot in the woods that isn't part of a training ground and start training. First you try to draw your antlers in partially, and after several hours of mostly failing, you move onto another technique. This continues for most of the day, until your training is interrupted by a couple of other disciples of Horned Island who seem to have stumbled upon you training. One of is around a year older than you and at Middle Blood and Viscera Tempering, which probably means he's one of the most talented people here. The other is significantly less talented. The one a year older than you smiles and approaches you. "Are you the new HIghblood?" You respond with...>"Yes, that's me." It's best to make friends.>"It's polite to introduce yourself first." You have a feeling this isn't just a coincidence.>Other>>3695876When I meant training grounds I meant the specific places on that island. You'd go there to practice either way. My bad if I wasn't clear.
>>3696037>"It's polite to introduce yourself first." You have a feeling this isn't just a coincidence.
This probably isn't coincidental. You're going to keep your guard up talking to these two. You reply with "It's polite to introduce yourself first." as you turn around to face them. The younger boy laughs and apologizes. "My bad, I suppose it is impolite. I'm Duan Pin, a core disciple. Duan Jin used to be my rival, so I came to greet you, since you've replaced him." Well, at least he's not associated with Duan Jin then, although you probably won't get along too well."Anyways, do you want to have some fun?" "What do you mean?" "Well, since neither of us have an idea of the other's strength, I thought we could spar. Naturally I'll handicap myself with weights to the point where I should be equal to your cultivation. Are you interested?" Well, you guess this was going to happen eventually- someone has come out of the woodwork to try to challenge you. You...>turn him down, you don't have time to fight him.>accept, with his strength or speed suppressed to Late Bone and Marrow Tempering, it'll be an easy win.>accept, and tell him that he doesn't need the handicap. To settle this you need to show him how you compare with a lower cultivation.>Other
>>3696264>>accept, and tell him that he doesn't need the handicap. To settle this you need to show him how you compare with a lower cultivation.
>>3696037>>"It's polite to introduce yourself first." You have a feeling this isn't just a coincidence
Your best option here is to try to display your full strength and try to win some respect for something other than your bloodline. If you win against Duan Pin with a handicap you'll be known as stronger than him at the same level of cultivation, but it won't be enough. To do this properly you need to push yourself to your limits, even if you don't win. "I don't think we need to have the handicap, we're only a year apart after all. I'll fight you evenly." Duan Pin seems confused and hesitates, but then replies. "Alright then, meet me in a few hours at the arena in the main square. I'll invite a few people, a fight is no good with a crowd after all."Duan Pin begins to walk away and you...>continue training until it's time to fight.>go with Duan Pin, you may as well meet some of the other juniors here while you have the chance.>Other
>>3696453>>go with Duan Pin, you may as well meet some of the other juniors here while you have the chance.
>>3696453>go with Duan Pin, you may as well meet some of the other juniors here while you have the chance.
>>3696453>>go with Duan Pin, you may as well meet some of the other juniors here while you have the chance
We need to get this stuff out of the way and start cultivating. We've to get back home after we cultivate and train our skills for a bit.
You should go with Duan Pin. This is a good chance to meet some of the other juniors on Horned Island. "Wait up, I'll be going with you. Introduce me to some people, I just got here." Duan Pin nods as you follow. "Certainly Highblood, I'll do my best to introduce you to my friends." You leave the island with Duan Pin and his friend, having a slightly awkward conversation on the boat to the main island.After arriving at the main island Duan Pin first stops in a small shop tucked away in a obscure part of the island. "This is a lounge run by an inner elder's subordinate. It's a nice, quiet place to speak and drink tea, so I like it here. There are also a couple of places for... other groups, but I usually don't go there. It's worth noting though." As Duan Pin enters he approaches a table in the corner where a young man and woman are sitting. Both of them are around your age, and have a level of cultivation for their age only just below yours and Duan Pin's."Qin Mu, Qin Xinyi, I knew the two of you would be here. Are either of you interested in watching a fight today? I was going to spar with new Highblood." As he says this the two glance over to you, curiously looking at your antlers and likely trying to appraise your strength. The silence is broken as the man speaks. "Sure, that sounds interesting." As he says this he gets up and approaches you, offering a handshake. "It's nice to meet you, my name is Qin Mu, and I'm a core disciple here." You accept the handshake and introduce yourself. "My name is Zuo Shi, and I'll be inaugurated soon as the new Highblood." After this you exchange greetings with Qin Xinyi and spend about 10 minutes sitting there, trying to find a chance to hop into the conversation before everyone leaves. It's a bit difficult because you don't know about current events here, but you make an admirable effort.
You're brought around to several places after this, although most of them are homes, and within a couple of hours you've met a dozen core disciples. They probably make up the majority of the younger generation's talents here. Eventually your group heads to the main square, where you're surprised to see many, many people. Duan Pin's friend must've gone to tell the inner disciples, or maybe even the outer disciples. You guess this is meaningless to Duan Pin if he doesn't have an audience, even if it now it almost looks like he's bullying you without the handicap. Duan Pin and you enter the arena in the center of the square. It's several hundred feet by several hundred feet, and it has an impressive amount of seating built around it.As the two of you approach the arena you hear a lot of muttering and see eyes focus on you. People quickly rush to get seats, curious to see which of you two will win a spar, and who will be seen as the top talent of this generation. Duan Pin and Duan Jin were in a harsh rivalry for this position before, and there was a small chance in the future that one of them would become Highblood and the other High Protector. However, your appearance has completely shaken this dynamic up.The two of you step up onto the stage, and Duan Pin takes the opportunity to speak. "Hello elders and fellow disciples, I'm surprised to see that so many of you were interested in our little spar. I'll try my best today to exchange pointers with the Highblood and draw out our full strength. He insisted on no handicap despite my advantage in cultivation, so it's sure to be a memorable fight." The two of you take your positions as Duan Pin speaks, and then you hear him speak again. "Let's start on the counter of three then?" "Sure." "One, two, three." As he says this both of you charge forward, although he has a notable difference in speed. Your bloodline helps with this, but he also has a bloodline, albeit one that isn't as pure. He also has the techniques of Horned Island backing him. As he charges forward you...>grab your guandao and wait for him to come to you, once he approaches you'll try to exchange blows with him. If it's a frontal exchange you may be able to come out on top with your defensive abilities and strength.>continue charging forward and attempt to dodge the blow he sends at you before countering with one of your own.>wait for him to draw near and then throw your guandao at him. Given how much strength you can muster for your cultivation, that will definitely catch him off-guard.>Other
>>3696689>continue charging forward and attempt to dodge the blow he sends at you before countering with one of your own.
>>3696689>>grab your guandao and wait for him to come to you, once he approaches you'll try to exchange blows with him. If it's a frontal exchange you may be able to come out on top with your defensive abilities and strength.
>>3696689>grab your guandao and wait for him to come to you, once he approaches you'll try to exchange blows with him. If it's a frontal exchange you may be able to come out on top with your defensive abilities and strength.Gotta play to our strengths
>>3696738exactly what I was thinking. We may have the same bloodline but we have an insane amount of stamina and strength higher than our class.
You'll try to exchange blows for now. You may be disadvantaged in speed, but he won't be expecting your exceptional strength and defense. You should surprise him with it and take the chance to exchange blows. You don't believe he'll be able to last longer if you fight each other with all you have. You wait for him to approach and then slice out with your guandao once he's in range, preparing to take a hit from his sword.You see Duan Pin's muscles tense as you unleash 5 Desires, immediately trying to hit him with your strongest blow. As you do this the sword embeds itself in your side, cutting through your skin but not going much further than that. The crowd gasps at first in fear that you'll be heavily injured, and after that in surprise. As Duan Pin tries to pull his sword out your guandao lands on his side, your aim only slightly shifted after being attacked. Duan Pin's judgement isn't correct and he opts to take the blow while removing his sword from you instead of abandoning the blade and immediately retreating. His shirt is cut through, long slashes appearing on the skin underneath and blood spurting out as the exchange ends.After taking the blow Duan Ping is sent back a few steps, taking his sword with him. The wound on his side looks nasty, but you can tell that while he's injured he can still fight. You can still fight as well. There's a deep slash in your side, but it isn't taking down your combat strength. You smile and yell "Again!" as you dash towards Duan Pin, aiming to make another exchange. He narrows his eyes before moving backwards, exiting your range. You can't do anything about it due to the difference in speed and he starts moving around you, looking for an opening to attack. You...>prepare to try and dodge his blows, now that your element of surprise is gone that might not work again.>hold your guandao steady and prepare to hit him with 5 Desires for a second time when he attacks, this is your path to victory.>wait for him to approach and then use the extended blow that requires you to dislocate your shoulder next time he attacks. It's not as strong and you'll be an arm down for a second after making the blow, but now that he knows your range you need to use it to land a hit. He should draw back after you hit him a second time, giving you a chance to recover.>wait for him to approach and then throw your guandao at it with both hands. It should surprise him and force him to deal with it while you close in and try to punch him. It is very risky though.>Other
>>3696915>>wait for him to approach and then use the extended blow that requires you to dislocate your shoulder next time he attacks. It's not as strong and you'll be an arm down for a second after making the blow, but now that he knows your range you need to use it to land a hit. He should draw back after you hit him a second time, giving you a chance to recover.Might as well finally use it, and turteling isn't a good look.
>>3696915>>wait for him to approach and then use the extended blow that requires you to dislocate your shoulder next time he attacks. It's not as strong and you'll be an arm down for a second after making the blow, but now that he knows your range you need to use it to land a hit. He should draw back after you hit him a second time, giving you a chance to recover.>>3696927agreed.
I am honestly surprised when he said spar I didn't think we would be using real weapons. At best I thought we would be using our real weapons, where we could actually kill each other. But hey now we know for next time...
>>3696981Yeah but we are cultivators, it takes alot to kill us.
>>3696915>>wait for him to approach and then use the extended blow that requires you to dislocate your shoulder next time he attacks. It's not as strong and you'll be an arm down for a second after making the blow, but now that he knows your range you need to use it to land a hit. He should draw back after you hit him a second time, giving you a chance to recover.
>>3696915>wait for him to approach and then use the extended blow that requires you to dislocate your shoulder next time he attacks. It's not as strong and you'll be an arm down for a second after making the blow, but now that he knows your range you need to use it to land a hit. He should draw back after you hit him a second time, giving you a chance to recover.
You'll use the extended blow you got in Border City. Now that he knows your range, he might be able to land a hit and dodge with his superior speed. The work around to that is to simply extended your range. After circling for a few seconds Duan Pin charges in, sword in hand. He slices again, aiming for one of your arms, and you thrust out with your guandao. He hits one of your arms, beginning to lightly cut across the length of it from as far away as he can, aiming to dodge your blow. Most of the force behind your guandao switches to the other arm, and your shoulder pops out of its socket as it falls downward, just barely managing to cut across Duan Pin's chest. He jumps backward after it hits him, preventing a major wound, and doesn't seem to notice that your shoulder is dislocated, giving it a chance to pop back in without having to dodge further blows.That exchange left a light wound on your left arm and a light wound on Duan Jin's chest. One blow won't be much, but if this continues a few more time it will be serious. Duan Pin stares at you, as if he's evaluating the situation, and then sighs. "You're more impressive than I expected. I admit that you're stronger then I was at your level of cultivation, but if you want to come out on top you'll have to do more than that. Duan Pin takes a deep, deep breath, closing his eyes. After a moment his eyes flash back open. He dashes towards you at a speed far faster than before, and you barely have time to react. You don't think you'll be able to land a blow here. You...>drop your weapon and just try to hold out against his next blows, whatever he's doing can't last for long or he would've used it after the first exchange of blows.>run, maybe if you make him run faster he'll wear out quicker. You won't be able to minimize the damage of the blows well.>wave your guandao down and try to get some sort of counterattack, he's fast but he's not invincible.>Other
>>3696981yeah, the rules of "sparring" are pretty much "don't purposely maim or kill your opponent or you're getting the same back"If it's a clear win one side can stop the blow ahead of time, and if it's not both sides spend a little while in bed.
>>3697218>>drop your weapon and just try to hold out against his next blows, whatever he's doing can't last for long or he would've used it after the first exchange of blows.This is expected
>>3697218>>drop your weapon and just try to hold out against his next blows, whatever he's doing can't last for long or he would've used it after the first exchange of blows.
>>3697218>try to surprise him by rushing forward and grabbing him. If you can pin his weapon arm you can probably win in a punching match
>>3697218>drop your weapon and just try to hold out against his next blows, whatever he's doing can't last for long or he would've used it after the first exchange of blows.
>>3697228as well! Specialty is our ability to withstand shit..
You can't dodge or counterattack here. Your only choice is to drop your weapon and turtle up in a bid to wear him out. He shouldn't be able to keep this speed up for long. You cross your arms in his direction and then a second later feel a deep pain in them as blood is drawn. After that there's a cut in one of your legs. Your body stings in pain as shallow sword wounds begin covering your body. God, this is way worse than trying to hold out against fists, the sword leaves much worse wounds with the same level of strength. You're not winning this, but at the same time you don't want to give up. No matter how much Duan Pin dishes out, you think you'll be able to stand up afterwards and recover after a couple of days at most. Sword wounds are clean after all. Still, this is clearly his victory. In an actual fight he could've killed you right now several times over by attacking your vitals or trying to cut off a limb (Although during an actual fight the necklace Zhu Chao gave you would save you). Maybe you're being too stubborn. You...>concede, this is his victory. Trying to wait this out is just stubborn.>wait until he slows down and ends these strikes, you have your pride to protect. The absolute best case scenario is that he's exhausted and you get a biased draw. The worst is that you're injured worse than you expect and spend up to a week recovering.>Other
>>3697376>>concede, this is his victory. Trying to wait this out is just stubborn.I mean he's a whole level of cultivation above us no need to continue, just be graceful in defeat and tell him we should spar again some time
>>3697376>>concede, this is his victory. Trying to wait this out is just stubborn.
>>3697390And honestly being able to walk away after that sword storm is still not the worst look. It should be clear that if he handicapped himself we would clearly win.
>>3697376>wait until he slows down and ends these strikes, you have your pride to protect. The absolute best case scenario is that he's exhausted and you get a biased draw. The worst is that you're injured worse than you expect and spend up to a week recovering.Damn you all, we must stand strong until the end.
>>3697408Yeah but he's clearly going to kick our ass and I dont want to be bed bound for a couple weeks
>>3697390Two levels actually, in a way. Since we are at late tempering and he is at medium blood and viscera This was humbling.-Fuck that>>3697408I am with this guy.>>3697376>wait until he slows down and ends these strikes, you have your pride to protect. The absolute best case scenario is that he's exhausted and you get a biased draw. The worst is that you're injured worse than you expect and spend up to a week recovering.we commit to our fucking win or our loss.
>>3697423Welp if you guys want to, I'm sure missing our inauguration because of a dumb spar won't look bad
>>3697419Yeah even if we win we are coming out of this hurt. But >>3697408 really made me want to commit to it. We will be known as being as stubborn as fuck. We either win or we lose but we give 100% we don't do the smart thing, we do the thing we " believe is right"We fight for every fight like our life is on the line kind of thing. >>3697428Yeah, we were making friends.
>>3697433Still not sold, best case it makes us look stubborn, worst case we look dumb. And even if we draw and save some face and if we loss we miss out on a ceremony and loss vital training time. But I am just one salty anon so here's hoping we draw
>>3697446>giving a shit about the customs of this place>not expecting to have to pick between this place and home down the line>not having a burning desire to win all of your battles or get the absolute shit kicked out of you trying
>>3697459Yep this isnt dragon ball so I don't really see the need for us to get fucked up for a week. That's just me
>>3697462>>3697446I'll be honest this may not be the best decision. This is a little out of character since we are not a hothead. But since we got here people have been testing our patience. We drew the line back at the house and in a way, this is a way to draw the line. We will accept challenges, but expect your challange to be a fucking challege.
>>3697462>xianxia isn't dragon ballAnd this isn't just about winning or losing a single friendly spar, it's about the principle. If we concede now, it looks like we got cocky and pussied out at the last moment, and we'd lose a lot of face. If we manage to hold on, it looks like our confidence is justified, and we don't lose much face for missing the inauguration because they know we got injured when Pin went all-out.
>>3697482This made me giggle.
>well, I'm sure their choice will be made after I read my book and take a bath>get back>13 new postsI didn't expect that, time to write>>3697482how did you know the name of the main villain
You're not going down at this point. You accepted this spar and turned down the handicap, so you should stay standing until the end. After that your loss will be declared, but it will be on your own terms. You're not going to back down after committing to this. As you stand there the slashes begin to get deeper, likely due to Duan Pin beginning to run out of patience. You look around and see that the crowd is... surprised to say the least. Duan Tao is staring at you, but it seems like he doesn't intended to intervene for the time being. As you're glancing from him you feel a sharp pain in your arm as the sword goes in one side and out the other. You quickly grab for him with the other arm, aiming to hit him before he can pull the sword out, but you end up missing. The next hit is in the leg, and then you feel the sword pass across your back. The pain is terrible, but you've gone through far, far worse. This continues for around 20 seconds as you hear the crowd loudly gasp and feel blood drip down your body. Eventually you feel the new flashes of pain vanish and see Duan Pin standing about 10 feet away from you, kneeling. He's breathing heavily, staring at you with wide-open eyes. You would try to counterattack now that he's weakened, but after trying to take a couple of steps towards him you stumble.Before the fight can continue, one of the elders from the council of elders steps forward. "That's enough. This is Highblood Zuo Shi's loss and Duan Pin's victory." There may have been cheering if this had gone more normally, but the crowd remains silent, shocked by what just happened. First you displayed abilities beyond your cultivation, and after that you managed to withstand Duan Pin attacking you for the full duration of his ace in the hole: One Breath, Sudden Breeze.Your vision is getting blurry, and you're getting the feeling that you'll be in bed for at least a few days after this. Maybe more. Duan Pin gets up at this point, staring at you. "Why didn't you just declare defeat? Are you really that stubborn?" Stubborn? Maybe you are. Still, there's something more important here. You accepted and put your all into this, so it'd be disrespectful to quit partway through when your life isn't at risk. "Never engage in a superficial fight. Whether the opponent will crush you or you'll crush them, be willing to put every drop of blood forward while fighting."As you finish talking, you feel your vision blur. You're not in the state to be walking around right now. "...I'm going to rest now. Let's have a rematch eventually." After saying this you try to walk away, but stumble again. Duan Tao approaches and helps you return to your home, and you immediately fall asleep once you're there.
The next morning you wake up. Your wounds are healing quickly, but it will be four or five days before you're back to normal. A couple of broken bones healed in one day, so you guess after that beating this makes sense. You...>go back to sleep, you should focus on resting.>ask for some books to be sent to you, you may as well take advantage of the time you're incapacitated.>get someone to send for Feng Jun, you're wondering how his first day as an inner disciple was.>OtherWe will resume tomorrow, this is a good place to stop for the night. Thanks for voting.
>>3697552>>ask for some books to be sent to you, you may as well take advantage of the time you're incapacitated.
>>3697552>ask for some books to be sent to you, you may as well take advantage of the time you're incapacitated.>get someone to send for Feng Jun, you're wondering how his first day as an inner disciple was.
>>3697552>>ask for some books to be sent to you, you may as well take advantage of the time you're incapacitated.>>get someone to send for Feng Jun, you're wondering how his first day as an inner disciple was.We can read before he arrives and for the days after.
>>3697552>>ask for some books to be sent to you, you may as well take advantage of the time you're incapacitated
>>3697552>ask for some books to be sent to you, you may as well take advantage of the time you're incapacitated.>get someone to send for Feng Jun, you're wondering how his first day as an inner disciple was.We'll just stay at home for today and chill out
You need to rest, but may as well stay awake and make a decent use of your time while you do so. The rate you recover will be basically the same. You call for one of the people working in the home to come to you and tell them to you grab your herbology books, get a few other things to read, and then to send for Feng Jun. As long as you have something to leave you should be able to kill time for the next few days, and you're curious how Feng Jun's first day as an inner disciple was.The books arrive first, and you look over them. They're... really cheesy fighting novels from the look of it. The person who got them tells you that Duan Tao sent them earlier today. Uh... ok then, you're not sure why he'd do that or why he owns these, but you guess you'll start reading them. Someone arrives with your herbology books and a couple of history books later. You begin reading, but are stopped by the arrival of Feng Jun after a few minutes."Hey, it's nice to see you. Thought, you, er, seem to be worse for wear." "...Yes, a bit. How was your first day here?" Feng Jun shrugs in response. "It was alright, I'm still a bit out of it after all of this. I was shown to my lodgings, it's a decent place. Most of the inner disciples seem to be more talented than me, so I clearly understand by now what the High Protector meant when he said I was a bit lacking. Still, I should be able to make a breakthrough to Meridian Opening within a few months and close the gap a little. It's a major jump between Late Blood and Viscera Tempering and Meridian Opening, so shortening the time needed by a couple years and strengthening my foundations gave me some room to compete. What happened in 12th Canyon really was a lucky chance for me."The two of you talk for around an hour before Feng Jun leaves and returns to training. After that you glance at the pile of books before you and pick up a...>history book, some of the information should be useful.>book on herbology, the more herbs you can identify the more solid a foundation you'll have in the field.>cheesy fighting novel, you're not sure why Duan Tao sent these to you but there must be some reasoning behind it. Maybe it's some form of training?>Other
>>3698815>cheesy fighting novel, you're not sure why Duan Tao sent these to you but there must be some reasoning behind it. Maybe it's some form of training?>Remember him saying that his granddaughter liked them We could use some relaxation time
>>3698815>>cheesy fighting novel, you're not sure why Duan Tao sent these to you but there must be some reasoning behind it. Maybe it's some form of training?He's granddaughter likes em
Before you grab a box, you examine the books Duan Tao sent you. Why'd he give these to you? As you're staring at them, you suddenly come to a realization, snapping your fingers. "That's right, he said his granddaughter liked some series of novels! Maybe these are it?" You put the history and herbology books aside and begin reading through the first book of the series. It's about a cultivator who dies, and who is reincarnated in a world where there aren't any cultivators, slowly raising his cultivation with the scant energies there and performing feats that amaze the locals there. It's not objectively well written, but it is surprisingly addictive.Many hours pass, and you're able to use your superior reading speed to get through all seven books that have been released. You are deeply dissatisfied with the cliffhanger. How could they just leave you waiting like that for the main character's faction to collide with the coalition of kingdoms?! Don't they know there are readers waiting?! You can kill vicious beasts or escape danger, but you can't figure out how the damn subplot with the other cultivator who transported there from his world is going to end by yourself! After a moment you calm down. It's just a book- not even a well-written one. You shouldn't get drawn in. ...Still, you'll keep a look out for new ones anyways. You set the books aside, thinking about the admittedly shallow plot for a moment, and then grab one of the herbology books for around an hour before going to sleep.You wake up some time the next afternoon to a servant telling you that you have several guests. You...>tell them you don't want to see anyone, you're tired.>tell them to send them in one at a time.>tell them you'll see them all at once.>Other
>>3698881>>tell them to send them in one at a time.
Well, you guess you can't just invite them in all at once. "Send them in once at a time, just start with whoever should take the least time." The servant nods, and in a couple of minutes Feng Jun is in the room, holding a basket of fruit. He pretty much just says hi and says he figured you'd enjoy the get well gift before leaving. You could get fruit at any point, but it's nice of him.After Feng Jun Duan Pin visits you, and the situation is slightly awkward given that he's the one that injures you. He compliments you on a good fight for your level of cultivation, and says he'll be waiting for your rematch. He leaves without saying much else, but it seems like the two of you will probably get along. You don't have any major grudges, and he's amiable enough, even if he was a bit aggressive in trying to solidify his position in challenging you.Once Duan Pin is gone Duan Tao visits you. You apologize for keeping him waiting, but he says that it's fine because he was waiting at his house. It's a walk of mere seconds for him, so he just told the servants not to mention his name and relaxed over there. "Anyways, your inauguration is set for five days for now. I would've expected to have pushed it back a week, but I heard that your wounds are recovering remarkably fast." You get a bit nervous at that remark, but luckily Duan Tao doesn't dig any deeper into why that is. "First there will be the public ceremony, which will take quite a few hours. You just have to put on some ceremonial garb, make a circuit round the island, wave to some people, and then sit through a long ceremony with a lot of incense involved. After that we'll ship you off to the island where the old Highbloods and High Protectors are buried, and you'll pay your respects over the course of a couple days. It's complex, so we'll be drilling you for a day or two beforehand"Duan Tao takes a drag on a pipe before continuing. "Anyways, that's the gist of what will happen. After that you'll be mostly free to do what you want. Anything you need to take care of before the inauguration? It will take a few days, so I figured I'd check." You...>tell him you'll just rest and then train up until then.>tell him you need a pay a visit to Green City before then. Zhu Chao should be getting there in around two and a half weeks, so you should try to leave a message for him.>say you want to visit Red City, you'll have a few days and you want to visit the Refiner's Guild.>Other
>>3699012>>tell him you'll just rest and then train up until then. We should be able to finish all of these things up before Feng gets to the island. He could contact us if we need to get in touch.
>>3699012>>tell him you'll just rest and then train up until then.
You'd like to visit Red City but you can do that at any time, while going to Green City is a bit of a stretch. It'd be preferable to leave a more in-depth message for Zhu Chao, but you have no way to make sure he gets it for certain. It's best to just wait for his arrival and try to meet him yourself. You tell Duan Tao you don't have anything to take care of, and he gets up to leave. "Oh, by the way, my granddaughter will be visiting tomorrow. Get along with her." Duan Tao leaves after saying this, and you return to your reading now that your guests are gone.The next morning you wake up and begin going through the books on herbs again, taking occasional breaks with a book of rather macabre short stories for variety. Eventually you're told that Duan Tao's granddaughter has come by, and you invite her in. She's a bit shorter than you, but appears to be around three years older than you. Her cultivation is at Late Blood and Viscera Tempering, meaning she's on par with most of the other direct disciples. Only Duan Pin is a clear step ahead, having a chance to breakthrough to Meridian Opening at 17 or 18 if things line up for him. The rest will do so between 19 and 21.She greets you in a rather flat tone. "I'm Duan Bao. I'm 17 years-old and ranked around the middle of the direct disciples. Its come to my understanding that my grandfather is trying to arrange something between us?" ...That's rather businesslike. "Yes, that's the case." The silence lingers for a few seconds before she responds. "Any hobbies?" "I'm decently talented in refining, i'm a disciple of a refiner surnamed Long. Besides that I've dabbled a bit in herbology and mostly just cultivate." She nods in response, responding after another slightly awkward pause. "I have no experience in refining, but I do know of Quasi-Master Long. He used to serve at the Refiners' Guild in Red City, but he went into the wilderness for a few decades My grandfather was looking for someone to forge a weapon and he was on the list on candidates. As for herbology, I'm aiming to become an apothecary myself, so I have some experience."
>>3699485>>return to training, you need to increase your strength quickly.
>>3699485>>try to meet up with some of the other direct disciples you were introduced to, you should make some friends now that you're out of bed.As much as I would like to keep training. We need to make some connections.
Yet another palpable silence follows. You're tempted to break it, but that would disrupt the, admittedly stilted, flow of this conversation. Duan Bao clears her throat before continuing. "Have you heard of the grey root? It's not an herb used in high-level concoctions, but due to it's usage in more common medicinal powders and its odd name given the color, there have been quite a few disputes about it. I even recall an incident where two High-ranked Apprentice Apothecaries refused to speak to each other after having a heated argument over this name." ...Why does it seem the only thing people want to speak through related to herbs is grey root. Is it really that big a deal whether it's grey or not? It's almost like the spirit of the herb is haunting you through some cosmic force that wishes to make you suffer for its amusement. Immediately tiring of this topic, you try to shift the conversation. "Yes, I have heard of grey root... many times."Remembering the novels you read the other day, you decide to bring them up. "Have you read A Yutian Cultivator In A Mortal's Court? I recently read through all seven volumes since I was in bed, and it was very entertaining." Her face shows a bit of emotion, and she nods. "Yes, I have read YCMC." "...YCMC?" "That's the abbreviation I use when speaking to my friends- it's faster to say and easier to fit into a letter. I can't exactly go over to the Scaled Palace every time I wish to talk since it's underwater, but if I use small, waterproof letters then it's easier." ..Oh, so she has a friend or two somewhere else. Well, you suppose that makes sense.Duan Bao takes control of the conversation as she asks how you liked the book and regales you with her theories about the advancement of the plot and the side plots. Some of them are solid enough you feel like you've been spoiled for the next several books, and others are so outlandish that you want to laugh. "Have you thought of these all yourself?" "No, no, I've discussed it with a few other friends as part of what's essentially a YCMC fan club and we came up with these together. There's the Sea Princess of Scaled Palace, a few people on Winged Peak, and a couple of others." ...You didn't realize these books were so popular.You end up spending several hours talking about the book before Duan Bao leaves. "I'll see you again some time. Rest well." She doesn't say much, but you think that went well? She doesn't show much emotion, so you can't tell, but she talked quite a bit. You return to resting, and after two more days you're fine. At that point you...>return to training, you need to increase your strength quickly.>try to meet up with some of the other direct disciples you were introduced to, you should make some friends now that you're out of bed.>OtherI broke the italics tags, my bad. The votes are still the same.
>>3699513>>try to meet up with some of the other direct disciples you were introduced to, you should make some friends now that you're out of bed. idk if I should vote again..but I will
>>3699555you didn't need to, I was just fixing my typo
>>3699513>>try to meet up with some of the other direct disciples you were introduced to, you should make some friends now that you're out of bed.
>>3699513>>return to training, you need to increase your strength quickly.
Tiebreaker from RNG in half an hour
Rolled 2 (1d2)>>3699835
You should make some connections while you have the chance. You'll be spending a lot of time training here, but it's just as important to make you're supported. Considering your position here it's unlikely anyone will hate you, but trying to hold a position of power while speaking to almost no one? That may work for a hidden elder or a sect leader, but it's not as easy for what's essentially a public figure- you. You'll try to meet up with some of the core disciples you met the other day.You leave your home and make your way to the lounge you recall Duan Pin introducing you to Qin Mu and Qin Xinyi in. You didn't know them too well, but it seemed like they were there often, so it's a good place to start. You retrace the route from memory, and upon entering the cozy shop, you see the two sitting in the corner, chatting. "Look, I'm telling you, Bai Li HAS to be bald under that hat. He can't have just decided to wear one for no reason. Maybe he lost a bet?" "...Why are we talking about this again?" "Because this is irritating me- look, we have to find out. Why don't we invite Bai Li out and find a chance to peak under it. Hell, maybe if-"Before Qin Mu can finish talking, he notices you and stops what he's saying. "Highblood, I didn't expect to see you here. You've already recovered? That's impressive!" Well, you guess that was what would be brought up first. "Yes, I'm fine now." Qin Mu lightly laughs before continuing. "I was really impressed by the battle between the two of you, bridging a gap like that between two geniuses was unexpected! I don't have a perfect grasp of their strength, but maybe you could match one of the Five Families' successors at the same level of cultivation. Are you taking part in the Yutian Martial Conference? Or maybe the Hiqiu Sect's bi-annual tournament?" You shake your head in response, not wanting to give them any more information that might help them determine your origins. "No, I wasn't planning to. It's a good opportunity, but I don't think i'd have the chance." "Oh? Alright then, but you could have a chance. Sometimes one of the Four God Clans will send out a junior in the slot of a small family or part of a sect to take part. They get to raise their prestige for a little while and get paid a bit, and the juniors get to experience combat against thrilling opponents. It usually happens two or three times a century for Horned Island, which averages to one person every decade. Spread across a few countries, no one really notices anything out of the ordinary." You suppose you'll keep that in mind, but you have no need of it- now that your strength has increased, you should be able to use your family's single slot in the Yutian Martial Conference.
The three of you talk for an hour, and you begin to learn more about the gossip on Horned Island. You can't really connect names to faces, but you do hear a single remark about a rather untalented inner disciple that's probably Feng Jun. You don't bring it up since they don't care much and don't really make fun him, simply noting that there's a new disciple as a side note. Hopefully everything is going fine for him. After all this gossip Qin Mu, the more talkative of the two, turns to you. "The two of us will be meeting with a few more disciples and talking about poetry. Old stuff, things we've composed ourselves, just the field as a whole- are you interested?" Well, you do have experience with poetry as you were educated well in your youth, but you'd be lying if you said it wasn't a little boring. You indirectly delay answering. "Do you do this often?" "Mmm, probably an average of five or six times a month. We have a group that gets together, although we don't need all of us to be there so it's flexible." "Oh, interesting. I didn't know there was a group like that." "Yes, there a couple. There's one for poetry among the core disciples, and there's another that involves gambling. Nothing too extreme from what I've heard, just bets to 'make things fun'. I think they're playing tonight, it should be Friday." Oh, gambling? That certainly sounds more interesting, although you're not one to often indulge in such things. "Do they play poker then?" Poker being one of the only things you've played, you ask. "No, no, it's usually majong. I don't know the rules but it's a tile game, not a card game." Oh, majong. You've heard of it, but you know very little of the rules too.Well, you've put off answering as long as you could. You...>accept their offer, poetry is a bit dull but fine. At least you're experienced with it.>decline their offer, you haven't played majong but it certainly sounds more interesting than poetry. You're fine with money right now anyways, given that you're the Highblood and you had a good amount before.>OtherI accidentally changed core disciple to direct disciple last post, dammit. Ignore that.
Another question: If I add more of my writing notes to the pastebin, which information would you want? What would be superfluous? Would you like short blurbs about countries and areas to refer to? Lists of the characters with info to keep track of these Chinese names? Is that too much?
>>3700021>>accept their offer, poetry is a bit dull but fine. At least you're experienced with it.We may as well talk about what we know. We could play with others later. Labeling is likely not the best thing to associate being high blood with.>>3700044I think that would be a great idea. Helps us flesh out ideas better if we've more information. Anything you feel comfortable writing. I like knowing regional/area info so we know if we go which direction what we can expect. Also things about horned island with the grand protectors ranting off about in during the ride being an easy in as to why we know all these things.
>>3700021>>accept their offer, poetry is a bit dull but fine. At least you're experienced with it.
Rolled 65 + 10 (1d100 + 10)Writing up the update after I take a shower, excuse me while I roll the dice for something.
>>3700206How'd we do?o_o Just fine I take it..
You'll go with Qin Mu and Qin Xinyi to their poetry meet. You're probably not as well-versed as them since they show a clear interest in the field, but you know something about it. It's better than gambling in a game where you don't even know the rules. You accept the offer and the three of you leave the building. After a short walk the three of you reach a large house that's not too far from yours. It's probably one of the core disciple's residences.The three of you enter the building and you vaguely recognize two other core disciples you met before your match with Duan Pin. Besides that there are a few disciples you don't recognize. They're probably inner disciples. The core disciples greet you and you manage to remember their names, greeting you back. Then you introduce yourself to everyone else, and the meat of the discussion starts shortly after."Alright, what the topic of this meeting? War poems?" "Mm, yes, I believe so." Well, you guess you're lucky today. You're more familiar with war songs and poems than others. Due to your father, you've always had a bit of a fondness for war and the heroes that are born from it. You let the others take the lead and they begin speaking of Zhang Ye, a famous poet from across the sea. He lived nearly a thousand years ago from what you've heard, but his works managed to spread a massive distance and persevere despite his death. He was a staunch nationalist, and wrote many poems about war and supporting his country. Maybe that's why his works managed to gain so much support- they're nationalistic, but it's almost impossible to tell exactly what country he's referring to. This makes it so that many countries had a vested interest in making his work known. Which government wouldn't want to help foster a feeling of appreciation for the government among the common man?You are familiar with Zhang Ye's works, and begin chiming in with this information as the discussion on him continues. He's a popular figure as far as ancient poetry goes, and while everyone here knows him, not many of them have read and analyzed his works as much as you. Your contributions go appreciated, and you manage to blend into the conversation without much trouble. After a couple of hours of discussion your throat is dry, and you're having more fun than you expected. At this point Qin Mu asks everyone to quiet down."Alright, we've been speaking for a while. Now that we've all discussed the works of our predecessors, let's move onto our own work. You'll have an hour to compose something, and then we'll go around. It doesn't have to be amazing, just make it work." You doubt they have to go over this normally, but you appreciate the explanation since you're new here. Everyone separates, beginning to furiously scribble down things, scratching them out, and spending long pauses of time thinking. You settle into this pattern as well, but you manage to think of something decent, although it's not particularly original.
Everyone begins sharing their work, and you end up going last. Qin Xinyi is a more skilled poet than you would have expected, and a couple of people are far worse than you would have expected, but it settles towards a healthy medium of mediocrity. You clear your throat and read your poem:"Perched on watchtowersSaddled on horsesSoldiers, wait, wearily for battleDay to nightSeason to seasonLonging to use their sword and saddle"Disclaimer: I am not a poet. Luckily this universe's laws of poetry do not apply to that universe, and in this world this poem is far better due to, uh, the nuances of their language and culture. Yeah, let's say that's why.The poem isn't as good as Qin Xinyi's, but it' more than passable. You get a few appreciative remarks, and are proud of yourself. Another half hour of discussion passes before everyone begins parting ways, and you return to your mansion. You don't do anything in the next couple of days, needing time to settle your state of mind and prepare for your inauguration as Highblood.Eventually it's the day before your inauguration, and Duan Tao comes to your room. With him he has a bottle of sickly looking paint, and the worst-designed outfit you've ever seen. "As per tradition, you will be wearing this tomorrow. The paint will be used to draw war symbols on your head and arms, and then you'll go into a chamber to meditate until morning. I don't particularly care, but tradition is tradition." You...>think this tradition is stupid but give in without complaint, it's fine.>begrudgingly let him do this as you complain, as far as suffering goes this is mild. You're getting far more out of it than the cost of wearing a dumb costume is worth.>ask if you really have to, you'd rather not have this horrible-looking image of you burned into everyone's mind.>Other
>>3700319>>think this tradition is stupid but give in without complaint, it's fine.
>>3700316>>think this tradition is stupid but give in without complaint, it's fine.
Sorry, I want some extra time to plan this out and make sure the next update doesn't fall flat, I'll update at the start of tomorrow's session. Done for the night, thanks for voting! If I had decided on that ahead of time I probably would've just left the last update without a vote, that was admittedly a bad vote if barely acceptable.
>>3700475mhm alright. Anyways thanks for running.
>>3700475Take all the time you need,quality is always better than quantity.
>>3700475I just checked out the Pastebin. Some side chacters would be nice to know about. Like our brother, Chao, Feng, Duan Pin seeing as we've spoken to them enough/ seen them fighting to know at least a rough assessment of their skills and power levels.
This is by far the most idiotic outfit you've seen in your life, but there's no use complaining. Tradition is tradition. As you put it on, Duan Tao chuckles. "I've been alive for a long time, but one thing has been constant." "What's that?" "No one has ever thought this outfit was cool. Including me." Duan Tao looks down, as if he's remembering something terrible, and then sighs. "If you mind this, I pray that you never become High Protector."You're led to a secluded chamber at the other side of the island where you'll start your circuit around the island tomorrow. It's bare of anything besides a few sticks of powerful incense, and a cushion. You're told to sit there until 9 AM, when they'll come to get you. Apparently it's an 'auspicious number', so you spend nine hours like this.Eventually Duan Tao and a couple of other elders come to get you, and you mount an elk outside. After that you immediately begin a slow circuit around Horned Island's main island. A few people drumming some sort of war tune follow behind you, and everyone stands to the sides. They're rather silent, but the one thing you can make out are a few people suppressing their laughter from this outfit. You try to ignore it and continue moving forward.The circuit slowly marches forward, and once you're three-fourths of the way around the island Duan Tao starts whispering to you, as he's on a deer right next to yours. "Once we end the circuit you need to recite this oath. I'll tell it to you now." Duan Tao begins going through a rather long oath that consists of things like protecting the island in times of war, preserving the bloodline, not betraying it, and ''placing it first in your interests". Given what Duan Tao told you, you didn't expect this oath to contain the last part, and you don't intend to place Horned Island interests above the Liu family's. You...>get on with it and say the oath when it's time, it's just ceremony. You can just ignore it later.>conveniently flub a couple words and miss the part about placing the oath first in your interests. It'll be a faux pas, but you doubt the ordinary disciples have the oath memorized and it'll just seem like you forgot a bit.>ask Duan Tao if that last part is really needed. Maybe he won't care and will just cover for you, telling everyone that he remembered the oath wrong when he told you. >Other
>>3702169>>conveniently flub a couple words and miss the part about placing the oath first in your interests. It'll be a faux pas, but you doubt the ordinary disciples have the oath memorized and it'll just seem like you forgot a bit.
>>3702169>>conveniently flub a couple words and miss the part about placing the oath first in your interests. It'll be a faux pas, but you doubt the ordinary disciples have the oath memorized and it'll just seem like you forgot a bit.Fuck em if he wants to screw us we can play this game. Our word means something to us.
You're not saying something you don't mean. You think you can flub a few words and then pass it off as a mistake. You're sure to get some lash back from that, but hopefully it's not too bad. You finish the circuit around the island, ending up at a large wooden stage. At this point the drummers have stopped and almost everyone from Horned Island is standing in front of the stage in a massive crowd of at least a thousand people. As you stand on stage you're covered in deer blood or something similar for a tradition, and all you can do is close your eyes and deal with it. After that you begin to recite the oath.You get most of the way through the oath, reciting it almost word by word, but fitting in a couple of very minor errors so that the final one doesn't seem as intentional. Duan Tao has thrown you a few glances when you did so, but doesn't say anything. As you're getting to the end you skip past the part that says anything about placed Horned Island first in your interests. You finish, and there's an awkward pause as you see many of the elders glance between each other. There's some confused muttering as time passes due to the pause, but eventually Duan Tao gets up and bails you out. "This is the end of the inauguration ceremony. Now the new Highblood will be brought to the Hall of Ancients, where the Highbloods and High Protectors of the past 1600 years are buried.As you're heading to the dock to wash off and get on a boat going to the Highbloods' and High Protectors' burial grounds, Duan Tao glares at you. "You messed up." You play dumb in response. "Where? Did I forget one of the gestures?" Duan Tao sighs and shakes his head. "The oath you idiot. You'll probably be made to redo it in private with some of the elders and that will be that, but be on your best behavior. I can't have people complaining about you being an outsider. Some of them have been operating under the assumption you're from another clan related to the Horned God, and to keep your position stable until you grow I've let these rumors stay to provide extra backing. I can't let them think this is some sort of clan rivalry."
The two of you board the boat and begin tersely chatting. "Whatever happened about that furniture? I know it got replaced, but..." Duan Tao sighs as you ask. "About the servants? We were able to get a couple that went too far, but the rest were taking it all under the claim that Duan Jin purchased it himself. He, did in fact, purchase a lot of it himself, but they took quite a few things that he didn't. It's not like we have receipts though, so we had to partially let it go."Eventually you arrive at the island where the Hall of Ancients is located, and Duan Tao hands you a pack. "This contains water, incense, and other items needed for the ceremony. You'll be fasting, so there's no food. We'll be waiting here for your return." You leave the boat and begin walking towards the only building you can see on the island- a large, stone tower covered in vines.You near the building, travelling along a surprisingly well-maintained stone path, and as you near the tower you see that it's surrounded by graves. The gravestones lists years, ages, accomplishments, cultivation, and everything else relevant about the person. First you pass by inner disciples who died, and then core disciples. After that it's ascending ranks of elders and even patriarchs from the Green Tribe. Finally you make it to the tower, and upon entering you see that there is no path upwards- the top part is only for show. The only real path is downwards. You...>look for some food and stay here, as long as you kill a few days here you should be fine. Ceremonies are just for show.>begin trekking downwards, it's time to pay your respect.>Other
>>3702675>>begin trekking downwards, it's time to pay your respect.
>>3702675>>begin trekking downwards, it's time to pay your respect.We may as well show respect to their traditions. We will be one of them soon enough.
You may as well honor their traditions, it's not much of a cost to you. You begin heading down the stairs, and eventually come upon a small shrine embedded into the wall. There's a gravestone that says "First High Lord of Horned Island, ruled from 0-138. Late Soul Foundation." There's no list of achievements, just this basic information. The name is left out, although you're not sure whether it's because they don't know it or because they want to emphasize the position he held.You open up the pack and see a slip of paper telling you what to do. First you light a stick of incense in a burner, wait for it to run out, and replace it. You repeat this several times, and then you grab a small stone token from the shrine. It's small and surprisingly isn't that old- it's maybe a decade old, if that. You can't recognize the design on it, but it's crudely made and incorporates a few designs from the gravestone. You take it and then begin carving your own with a small rock and a carving knife left in the bag. You finish this work quickly and your stone ends up looking much better than the other one given your background as a refiner. Now that you've taken the token that was there and replaced it, you bow and make a prayer wishing them good fortune in the afterlife before heading further down.As you go down you reach a wall covering the staircase. It's similar to the one from the temple you stumbled the Horned God's bloodline in. You touch the wall, and you feel the blood within your body tremble. The wall disappears as the designs on it light up, the stone receding into holes into the wall to let you past to the next shrine.The shrines advance in time, the cultivation quickly dropping from Late Soul Foundation to more what you expected- Early Soul Foundation and Half-Step Soul Foundation. Most of the graves are numbered "Nth Highblood" or "Nth High Protector", but there were also some "High Lords", which you vaguely recall being what it's called when the positions combine. You end up going down and down for an indistinct amount of time, repeating the ceremonies and settling into a pace. Eventually the tokens become clearly older, not being from maybe a decade ago, and instead being clearly worn. You guess that means the last person to come here didn't make it this deep- the passage to each shrine is blocked by a wall that can only be opened with one's bloodline, so it makes sense.
Eventually you begin approaching the past few hundred years worth of Highbloods and High Protectors, and you see that the tokens have suddenly become more recent. You spend awhile trying to figure out what this means, before it dawns on you- these must have been left here when they were buried. That means no one has come here since they died. In a bit of a melancholic mood, you continue to perform the ceremonies, take the tokens, leave your own, and continue downwards. You're hungry, but you ignore it. You're not sure how long has passed, but it has to have been a while.Eventually you reach the grave of a Highblood who died 30 years ago. It's the last shrine, and past that there are walls, but the indents where the shrines are held are empty. It looks like you're finished here. You...>head back up, you're starving and it will take a while.>keep going down until your bloodline is too weak to continue, you're curious if there's a bottom.>OtherBy the way, it's not a plot hole that recently deceased people are buried at the bottom when almost no one can get down there relying on their bloodline. I would explain it, but it's completely useless information that would take up a lot of text. Just let it be known I already considered that.
>>3702866>>keep going down until your bloodline is too weak to continue, you're curious if there's a bottom.We may as well reach the bottom and see what up. Im sure it's rare for people to know as much as we will so fuck it.
>>3702866>>keep going down until your bloodline is too weak to continue, you're curious if there's a bottom.
Commit to the things we can do. Out of respect>>3702866>>keep going down until your bloodline is too weak to continue, you're curious if there's a bottom
You may as well try to head deeper now that you're all the way down here. It's not like you'll ever have a chance to come here again. ...Well, not unless you die on Horned Island. You continue going down, the easy process of opening the doors between empty shrines slowly growing more difficult and taking longer. After passing through god knows how many walls, eventually they take seconds to open, and at the very end nearly a minute. Just when you think you're as far down as you can go, you see that the scenery has changed slightly. The stairs continue curving downwards, but at the end of them is a massive wall covered in various symbols and inscriptions, similar to the walls you've been forcing open with your bloodline.You approach the wall and press your hand against it as the blood within you faintly resonates with it, and while some of the symbols faintly light up in a green light, but it doesn't show any sign of opening. You stay there for the better part of an hour, and while the symbols maintain their faint light, it doesn't look like your bloodline is pure enough to get past this final wall. You wonder what could possibly be behind it, given that all the Highbloods, High Protectors, and High Lords are buried above.After that you head back to the top of the tower, your hunger now bothering you. You went through the tower faster than most due to your speed at carving those tokens, but given the sheer distance you traveled your trip probably ended up taking longer than almost anyone else. You return to the docks, where Duan Tao is simply staring off of a boat."You were in there for nearly a week. I suppose you got the bottom shrines?" You nod. "Yes, and I went a bit beyond that. There were mostly just empty shrines." As you say this you...>add on that there was one area you couldn't access. Maybe if you mention this there will be an excuse to give you more treasures that improve your bloodline.>don't mention it, it doesn't really matter and if it does then maybe it has implications you don't know about.>Other
>>3702993>>add on that there was one area you couldn't access. Maybe if you mention this there will be an excuse to give you more treasures that improve your bloodline.
You mention the door at the bottom, figuring that in the best case you might be able to get more support in order to open it some time in the future. Duan Tao seems confused, and notes that he's curious who's buried there, but given that you couldn't even open the door partially, it's probably not worth looking into. He says you're free to return after eating the Red-Gold fruit if you want, but it probably won't bridge the gap between what's required and your bloodline.After the ceremony you return to a large feast with some of the elders and core disciples, and notice that some of them are less friendly than before. The core disciples you spoke to are perfectly fine with you, but a small portion of the people seem wary towards you. You ask Duan Tao what that's about privately, and he frowns. "Due to your 'mistake' during that speech, Duan Jin's father made up some story about the two of us collaborating to destroy Horned Island and betray it to outside forces. Most people get that it's just his insane ramblings, but some people do agree with the intent behind it, if not the content. Because of that Duan Jin's punishment is going to be lighter than I expected. He'll just be exiled to Green City to serve as a part of the Green Tribe, and never allowed to return to Horned Island. His father might join him after all of this." Well, you suppose your actions did backfire a bit. Still, it hasn't turned out too badly.The feasts ends after a couple of hours, and you don't talk much due to your extreme hunger. Once it's done you're free to return home, sleep for the better part of a day, and then return to training. A couple weeks pass without much of interest as you focus on...>the movement technique related to your bloodline.>miscellaneous techniques related to your bloodline.>adapting the "Nine Gusts Halbard" to the guandao.>improving your cultivation.>OtherYou spend some time on the rest, but as you do so you don't have much time to...>practice the movement technique related to your bloodline.>miscellaneous techniques related to your bloodline.>adapt the "Nine Gusts Halbard" to the guandao.>improve your cultivation.While a small group is still cold towards you, public opinion is mostly on your side. Duan Jin is exiled to Green City, and his father resigns from the council of elders and moves there himself. At this point Zhu Chao should have arrived and set up base in Green City himself. You...>go to visit him, if it waits for too long then he'll probably be forced to try and contact Horned Island himself.>continue training on the island, you're fine for the time being and the less you contact each other while you're here the better.>Other
>>3703150>>improving your cultivation.With our new wood cultivation technique >practice the movement technique related to your bloodlineSo just to be sure, it still works. Just not as well as with our horns out right? With out our antlers out how much faster is it than the one we currently use?
>>3703220>You'll stick with the movement technique related to your bloodline for now. The antlers are... large, but there should be some sort of technique to help hide them. Or you could just wear a massive hat. Anyways, now that you're already recruited it's not like it matters much if your antlers are spotted during a fierce battle. It's not like they can refine the blood out of you- you aren't The Horned God, there's a massive amount of normal blood mixed with it.It is worthless without using your bloodline because it's the only thing that changes the muscles in your leg and makes the movements in the technique possible for you. It's less useful (but still better than the one you use) if you're using the one technique that exists to try to make your antlers smaller. You chose it because only one person cared whether the antlers were out or not while two didn't care either way and I tried to make it clear in the text afterwards.If you guys really care that much then you can just wear a turban.
>>3703150I'll do this instead>>improving your cultivation.>adapt the "Nine Gusts Halbard" to the guandao.>go to visit him, if it waits for too long then he'll probably be forced to try and contact Horned Island himself.
>>3703354I wantan update lol. I'll switch to this.
You made obvious progress in your cultivation in the past few weeks, drawing closer to Blood and Viscera Tempering using the training resources of Horned Island and putting forth all of your effort. You spent a lot of time under the waterfall training grounds, withstanding the pressure evenly across your body and making sure you didn't have any weak spots that weren't tempered as well as the rest. You don't get a chance to practice with the Nine Gusts Halberd, but you'll get to eventually.Eventually you're certain that Zhu Chao should be in Green City by now, and board one of the boats travelling between Horned Island and Green City. You're honestly surprised no one notices these boats, but given that the cities surrounding the lake have an interest in falsifying travel records and keeping the Four God Clans a secret, it's not outlandish. The next morning after you board the boat you're in Green City, and you leave the boat.As you exit the boat you make sure you're not being tailed, and much to your relief you aren't. You hid your face under a cloak the entire time, but you thought someone may have been sent to protect you. Luckily it seems they deem Green City safe enough. You figure that Zhu Chao would make it easy for you to find him, and head to a tavern. Listening in on the news you hear about an apothecary whose cultivation isn't even at Half-Step Soul Foundation, but who's practically a master given his ridiculous skills. He arrived in the city around a week ago and took up residence in the apothecary's guild afterwards. ...Yeah, that's probably him. You knew Zhu Chao used to be an apothecary, although you didn't realize his skills would be so spectacular it would become the talk of the city within a week. In fact, there are quite a few mysterious things about him, but you don't really care about looking into his background. He's helping your family out because he owes your father a life debt, and that's that.You head over to the apothecary's guild and ask if Zhu Chao happens to be staying there, and the receptionist seems surprised, but nods her head. "Master Apothecary Zhu Chao is staying in the upper floors. He said if anyone asked for him to send them up, so I'll lead you there." You follow the woman through several floors, moving through crowded back halls and a few staircases before being shown into a large room near the top of the guild. Inside is Zhu Chao, who's currently reading a book and messing around with a cauldron.
Upon your entry Zhu Chao looks at you, pleasant surprise in your eyes. "You're alright then. Good, I was hoping everything would be ok." As you sit down, he begins muttering, clearly annoyed. "Tsk, I haven't messed with forging pills in at least a dozen years. They're calling me a 'master' out of respect here, but that clearly doesn't fit. I'm exceptional in soul force for my cultivation, but I can still only stretch it out by using all of my skill and taking pills mid pill forging. A simple "master level" pill takes weeks for me to forge and my failure rate is far too high. Even if my technique is the best here, I'm stuck below the guild head because of my cultivation." He ignores you for a minute as he messes with the cauldron and arranges a table full of herbs. He seems to be really annoyed about this."Anyways, do I need to take you back? You've grown faster than I expected, so you clearly have gotten benefits here. If you leave now then we can make it just in time for the Yutian Martial Conference, although it may be a bit of a rush. There's always next year." You...>decline, you still need to take advantage of the resources of Horned Island and stay there a bit longer. It's a bit early to be leaving.>decline, but ask if he'd be willing to escort you back to Border City. You'd like to improve your refining with Refiner Long there since he did take you on as a disciple.>accept, you can always return to Horned Island later, although the travel is a pain.>Other
>>3703598>>decline, you still need to take advantage of the resources of Horned Island and stay there a bit longer. It's a bit early to be leaving.
>>3703598>>accept, you can always return to Horned Island later, although the travel is a pain.We should show our brother up. Put a fire under his ass to train..
>>3703617Nah, we've got to stick to our training here. We have got the island where our training will go faster due to the array set up. We need to get our battle techniques up to a certain standard where we can use them effortlessly in sparing. Then go back and bust ass next year. We've just got to finish reading our herbology books. Cultivate and train. We've been feeding our red gold plant. And the bud as well.Could we plant that branch with the bud in our garden?
Techical dfficulties, updaec delayed a wshileo0n-screen keyboard sucks
>>3703738mhm, I get it.
You still haven't grown enough. You should stay on Horned Island for the time being and continue growing. You tell Zhu Chao this, and he just nods in response. "Alright then. I probably should head back to the estate for the time being, but if I came out here I may as well make something out of it. I'll be practicing in the Apothecaries' Guild if you need me."Before you leave you chat a bit with Zhu Chao and make sure the family is doing fine. After confirming this you leave and keep low until the next ship from Horned Island sets out. You're back by that night, and return to your training without interruption. Several weeks pass, and you grow that much closer to Blood and Viscera Tempering. Hopefully this pace will keep up and you'll break through within two or three months. During this time you...>holed yourself up completely, focusing on your cultivation.>spoke with others a bit, attempting to increase your influence.>prepared for a trip to Red City, wanting to see the Refiners' Guild there.>OtherThat's the last update for the night, thanks for voting. I'll update the character sheet tomorrow.
>>3703939>>spoke with others a bit, attempting to increase your influence.
>>3703939>>holed yourself up completely, focusing on your cultivation.>>spoke with others a bit, attempting to increase your influence.
>>3703939>holed yourself up completely, focusing on your cultivation.
>>3703939>spoke with others a bit, attempting to increase your influence.
>>3703939>holed yourself up completely, focusing on your cultivation.>spoke with others a bit, attempting to increase your influence.We need to get to Blood and Viscera as fast as we can and eat the fruit. Then we could go learn with Long and participate in the tournament next year.
I'll start in either 2-3 hours or 8-9 hours from now.
>>3703939>>holed yourself up completely, focusing on your cultivation
You opt to spend most of your time cultivating, but you do make some time to speak to others. You go to a couple of Qin Mu and Qin Xinyi's poetry meetings; occasionally speak to Duan Pin, who is a bit too serious but nice enough; and talk to Duan Bao about ""fine literature"". Besides making friends with other core disciples here you do make some time to Feng Jun, who's beginning to settle in here.Nearly an entire month passes as you stay on Horned Island, your cultivation continuing to advance. You make little progress with the Nine Gusts Halberd, but your movement technique begins to take shape and your night-vision and sense of smell are enhanced when using your bloodline. One day, while training...>you go hunting with Duan Pin. It seems to be his only hobby, but he's pretty good at it.>you travel with Duan Bao to chat with a few people from Winged Peak, Scaled Palace, and Clawed Island. You're not sure why you're being brought along, but you'll probably end up talking about books.>you visit Palette City with Qin Mu and Qin Xinyi, where a major poet is holding some sort of event.>you decide to hole yourself up completely, ignoring the outside world and focusing on your breakthrough.>Other
>>3705128>>you travel with Duan Bao to chat with a few people from Winged Peak, Scaled Palace, and Clawed Island. You're not sure why you're being brought along, but you'll probably end up talking about books.Might as well talk to her if we have to marry her
>>3705128>>you travel with Duan Bao to chat with a few people from Winged Peak, Scaled Palace, and Clawed Island. You're not sure why you're being brought along, but you'll probably end up talking about books
>>3705128So how long are we expected to court this lady before gandpa gets us hitched?
You end up going with Duan Bao in order to chat with a few people from the rest of the Four God Clans. You're not sure why you've been brought along, but it's not like you mind. You get to speak with new people and talk with someone that you need to get acquainted with.The location of your meeting is an island owned by Duan Bao in Holy Lake. It's tiny, and one villa takes up the entirety of the island. Honestly, it may be better to call it a rock than anything, but oh well. Duan Bao and you arrive here first, and she begins sorting through things while you're given the job of cleaning. You're glad to be given a break from nearly an hour of her almost spoiling the future plot of a novel on the boat. Soon after you hear splashing, and two women and a man enter the house, dripping water everywhere. Upon a closer examination you can tell that their clothes are soaked, and there are scales near their eyes and several other parts of their bodies. Duan Bao turns to them, clearly displeased. "What did I tell you about swimming here." One of the women nervously laughs in response, glancing around. "Uh... that... that we should watch out for sharks?" "No. That you should dry off." The other two in her group prudently leave the house, while the woman gets chased by Duan Bao, who's trying to 'attack' her with a towel. You haven't seen her this active before, so the whole situation is surprising.Eventually Duan Bao catches the woman, and she's forced to dry off before coming back in. It seems like a pyrrhic victory however, as their chase left water around the entire house. You begin to clean it up, and then you hear more noises outside. After that you see three men and one woman enter the building. Two of them have long, sharp fingernails and sharp teeth. You think they're from Clawed Island? The other two people seem normal on the outside, so they're probably from Winged Peak.Once the floor is dried everyone gathers around the table, and what you assume to be an at least slightly-serious discussion of books immediately devolves into arguing about the future plot of various cheesy novels that they're reading. You were recommended a couple so you thought you could sort of follow along, but... some of these theories are nonsensical! Where are they pulling this evidence, out of their ass? You...>just join in with the chatting where you can, maybe they're aware that what they're saying doesn't make too much sense.>try to debunk some of the ridiculous theories flying around, discussing books is fine, but this is just silly.>make up a few ridiculous theories on purpose and throw them into the discussion, this way you can test if they have any sort of logic behind them or if they're really just making things up.>Other>>3705303He'll probably make a formal engagement before you leave, and when he forces you to get married is anyone's guess. Probably 2-3 years, you aren't even 15 yet and you're a cultivator.
>>3705303As for courting, you could technically not talk to her at all if you wished, all he wants is the influence of his granddaughter being married to the Highblood and a pure bloodline entering his family.
>>3705326>>make up a few ridiculous theories on purpose and throw them into the discussion, this way you can test if they have any sort of logic behind them or if they're really just making things up.Have fun damit
>>3705328I just figure if have to pump a handful of babies into her we should at least be acquaintances if not friendly
>>3705343Yeah, that's preferable. I was just saying it's a preference, not a requirement.
Maybe they're doing this on purpose? You suppose you won't be a buzzkill then, you may as well make up whatever sounds amusing and then propose it as a future plot point in one of the books you've read. After a few minutes you think of something outlandish, and start proposing it as the "definitive plot" for the next novel in a series. You get some laughs out of it, and you start blending into the conversation. Some people seem to be taking this satirically, while others really just don't care enough to do any fact-checking, but either way it's amusing.The talking like this continues for a couple hours before someone has to leave, and then people slowly trickle out after that. Later that night only you and Duan Bao are left, and you take the boat back to Horned Island. Your conversations seem to be slightly less awkward now that you've glimpsed the fun of taking some books and having fun with them.Another week passes, and soon it'll be time for the annual "Harvest Festival" on Horned Island. It's supposed to promote the growth of greenery and ensure a good harvest and all that, and so you'll once again be dressed up in a stupid costume and forced to do a few ceremonies. You don't like that part, but there's supposed to be more festivities than just that going on, so you should have some fun. Before the festival you...>focus on solely cultivating, that's your main focus here.>read up on the festival and other such traditions ahead of time, you'll know what you have to do either way but knowing more background information couldn't hurt.>visit Red City, you'd like to visit the Refiner's Guild while you have the chance.>visit Palette City, they're the largest of the five cities as a neutral ground for the Four God Clans and you've heard quite a bit about it.>Other
>>3705608>focus on solely cultivating, that's your main focus here.
>>3705608>>focus on solely cultivating, that's your main focus here.I want that breakthrough and to eat that fruit.
>>3705608>>focus on solely cultivating, that's your main focus here.
Over the course of the next week you hole yourself off from everything else and focus on cultivating. There is value in interacting with others and exploring the world, but that does't matter right now. You have a reason that you need to advance your cultivation right now, and you're not going to let your breakthrough be delayed.After your week of training you're brought out of cultivation and made to help start the Harvest Festival. You do some sort of traditional dance, ring a bell, and are able to leave quickly. You do look around a bit, but it seems that it's mostly festival games and food stalls. You return to your cultivation, and end up getting a bit too into it as your breakthrough approaches. Three weeks of cultivation after the festival, you feel that your breakthrough is any day now and begin to prepare yourself. You begin to adjust your mental state and decide to take a day or tow off to do so. You...>find somewhere without many people and enjoy nature. That's the best way to adjust yourself before a large breakthrough.>see how Feng Jun is doing, hes been here for a couple of months now.>visit Red City for a short time, you'd like to see the Refiner's Guild.>visit Palette City, they're the largest of the five cities as a neutral ground for the Four God Clans and you've heard quite a bit about it.>Other
>>3705816>>find somewhere without many people and enjoy nature. That's the best way to adjust yourself before a large breakthrough.Gotta take our fruit, and let it store all that excess energy in our wood core. Let is be one with nature. Zero wastage
>>3705816>>find somewhere without many people and enjoy nature. That's the best way to adjust yourself before a large breakthrough.
>>3705816>find somewhere without many people and enjoy nature. That's the best way to adjust yourself before a large breakthrough.
You'll relax somewhere quiet for one or two days and then make your breakthrough to Blood and Viscera Tempering. You leave your home to go somewhere other than the training grounds for the first time in a week, and visit Duan Tao."Nature? Hmmm..." Duan Tao's brows scrunch together before he seems to come to a realization. "There is a good place I can think of. It's a few hours away by boat, but it's a completely uninhabited island. No one owns it and there's nothing built there. It might just be what you're looking for." A few hours later Duan Tao and you leave Horned Island, as he steers the boat himself. Confused, you ask him why, and he smiles. "The island is small, and not too many are aware of where it is besides me. I was left there for the better part of a month training once." He laughs before happily swearing. "Fuck that old man, he really was a hardass." He doesn't speak on the topic more than that, and soon you arrive at a smile island maybe a mile across.Duan Tao says he'll return in three days, and you're left there by yourself. You look around, admiring the light waves of the lake against the shore and the clean sand. Only the sounds of bugs and birds fill the air, and you're able to relax and clear your mind. After the better part of a day you sit up, close your eyes, and begin to concentrate. Now it's time for you to make another breakthrough.You slowly stand up before beginning to move, switching through a series of poses. You exert your full strength, all your energy coming from the core of your body and flooding throughout it. You punch at the air and run around as a cracking noise comes from your joints. This continues for a while before your feel a deep pain throughout your body and white flecks begin rising to the surface of your skin. You don't have the time to examine them as you're in the middle of a breakthrough, and as you finish more and more flecks of white rise to the surface. Eventually they stop rising, and you feel the energy begin subsiding, but suddenly you vomit. The vomit is colored a dark red, and is full of blood. This must mean you've made it through to Blood and Viscera Tempering!Excited, you begin wiping the white flecks off of you, although you do take the chance to examine them. They seem like... bone. You guess your bones got rid of some of their impurities and expelled it from your body somehow. It hurt a lot, but it must have been beneficial. You finish washing off and enjoy some time wandering around the island, but it seems that you took a while to break through as Duan Tao returned earlier than expected.
Duan Tao examines you closely, grabbing at your arm and pulling at the muscles and bone. You're annoyed, but don't stop him since it seems like he's doing something important. "Mmmmm... you broke through. Your foundation is shakier than I'd like, so it's a good thing you have that fruit." "Shaky? How could it be shaky when I have strength beyond my cultivation." Duan Tao scratches his head, as if he's struggling to put it into words. Eventually he snaps his fingers and looks at you. "Alright, so there are two swords. One is made of normal iron, and one is made of a stronger metal. Naturally the one made out of stronger metal will win. If you purify the iron more then it will be stronger, but it will still likely lose against a decent sword made out of stronger material." There's a slight pause before he tries to explain his metaphor, realizing it may not be obvious. "Basically, you're made out of stronger metal. Your foundation may not be as good as the core disciples of Horned Island, but due to your stronger body you can jump small cultivation stages." "Anyways, it's not terrible. It's just not as I'd like. You're still far above those average cultivators." As you finish your talk the two of you return to the boat and it begins heading towards Horned Island. "After we arrive you should take a short break to clear your mind and then you can begin using the Red-Gold fruit." Duan Tao takes a puff from a pipe after saying this. "So, what are you planning on doing after that? I can tell that you were waiting for this given your seclusion lately." You...>tell him you'll stay on Horned Island for a bit longer to cultivate after eating the fruit.>say that you'll depart to travel for a bit. You'd like to visit some of the other cities near the Holy Lake.>tell him you'll be going to Green City. You need to contact Zhu Chao and head back to Border City.>Other
>>3706035>>tell him you'll stay on Horned Island for a bit longer to cultivate after eating the fruit.
>>3706035>>tell him you'll stay on Horned Island for a bit longer to cultivate after eating the fruit.Might as well take advantage of the martial techniques here, I'd rather be here then refining or going home yet
>>3706035Hey what level our cultivation did our dad get to? And also what level is our brother at?
>>3706203Your father died as an Acupoint Opening cultivator (you believe he would have reached Soul Foundation eventually if he was still alive), and your brother was at Middle Blood and Viscera Tempering, but he should be at Late Blood and Viscera Tempering by now.
>>3706221And our brother is 2 years older then us? Can you imagine if we breakthrough into meridian opening before him. He's pretty sluggish with his cultivation, but we are basically a recluse.
>>3706221And he is supposed to have a really great cultivation speed, right?Cultivation Technique: The 'Storm of Battle' Technique, awarded to your father in the war against Hiqui SectBattle Techniques: 72 Desires (5 desires); Extended BlowMovement Techniques: Minute Deftness; Spinning Leaf, Crawling RatWhen you can could you update it? If it's not to much of an issue, could you let us know how far along we are with it? And if it is a bloodlike technique.
>>3706262Yep but he likes to drink and fuck more then cultivate. So our dedication is out matching his skill.
>>3706262I'll do that tonight or early tomorrow, I remember I was going to a day or two ago but didn't get around to it, my bad.>>3706237>>3706262Your brother's cultivation speed is below that of important juniors form the major families but not by much. He'll probably reach Meridian Opening by 19 or 20. If he actually put forth all of his effort you honestly have no idea if he would have broken through to Meridian Opening by now, which would be a feat equal to important juniors from the Five Families.>>3706274>our dedicationdon't forget the MC luckanyways, update after I shower
You'll stay for Horned Island for at least a bit after eating the Red-Gold fruit. It's not time to leave yet.Instead of returning home you're immediately brought into a private area of the island used for training. Luckily the fruit doesn't have any special way of being prepared, so you're supposed to calm your mind and then you can eat it when you're ready. You take a couple of hours to calm down and then slowly begin eating the fruit. It's amazingly sweet, and the juices fill your mouth with a taste unlike anything you've had before. You eagerly take a second bite, and a warm, gentle energy radiates throughout your body.You wipe your mouth, licking up the juices where you can, and begin running around as fast as you can. Occasionally you stop to kick, punch, and make other movements. As you do so you feel the energy sink into your muscles, improving their durability and expelling the impurities. This continues for several hours as you slowly consume the fruit, and your foundation solidifies muscle group by muscle group.After the muscles you feel the energy begin sinking into your flesh as you exercise. You don't really have any marks on your skin since you went through Flesh Tempering recently, but if you did they would disappear completely. Your skin becomes smoother and the color lightens slightly, making it look like you're a scholar who stays indoors most of the time.Once the energy is done radiating through your flesh you continue eating the fruit and it sinks into your bones. You anticipate the deep pain from earlier, but much to your surprise it's still gentle, and while those white grains from earlier appear on your skin, they're smaller. You wipe your skin off but they keep appearing for around six to eight hours, and eventually you're done.Once you're bones have been affected you're almost done. The majority of the fruit has been used up, but there's still some enough left to help with Blood and Viscera Tempering. You just broke through so it can't really help with solidifying your foundation as much, but it can help you make some progress and effectively improve your breakthrough. You eat the last of the fruit and the energy begins moving through you, jolting forward with every heartbeat. Eventually you feel a light burning sensation before you break out into a coughing fit. You spit out dark, sticky blood as your blood is purified slightly more. After that the energy begins to dissipate and your consumption of the Red-Gold fruit is done.
Curious, you grab a dagger and lightly stab at your finger. It takes slightly more force to pierce the skin, although the benefits are more related to your foundation and future cultivation than your current state. The blade just barely reaches the bone and you glance at it, curious. It's a pure white color, and you can't see any blemishes. That must be the affect of Bone and Marrow Tempering. You wait there for a bit both for your finger to heal and for you to calm down, and then return to the island. Your first order of business is to...>continue practicing.>contact Zhu Chao and give him a definite time for when you're leaving.>challenge Duan Pin to a rematch. You can only pray that he hasn't made a breakthrough since then.>speak to Feng Jun. It's been a while since you talked and you wonder if he's broken through to Meridian Opening yet.>Other
>>3706471>We should check in with the inner disciple juniors we've been secluded for some timeWhat's up with our blood is that normal? And do the fruit basically just improve every past break through we've made?.
>>3706527Oh never mind we were looking at our bone. I miss read
>>3706527>>3706496I am thinking we should check on Feng soon. Cultivate and practice sparing with him more often. It really should give us a better idea of how our strength has increased. And we get to see how he is doing more often. Especially since we will be leaving him for next year's tournament for who knows how long.OP Have we seen an increase in the bud's size since we've been feeding it for months now?
Well, there's nothing to do but return to practicing. Without strength nothing else is important. You return to your home and start polishing your technique now that you've broken through to Early Blood and Viscera Tempering, while news of your breakthrough spreads around Horned Island.Two days after you breakthrough, Duan Tao comes to your home. "We'll be making your engagement with Duan Bao official soon. There will be an announcement and a celebration. Given your age the two of you will marry in around three years time." You guess this was coming eventually. You nod, and Duan Tao leaves you to your own devices after giving you a date for the announcement and celebration.In a couple of days you get more news at the same time. Apparently Duan Pin broke through to Late Blood and Viscera Tempering, while Feng Jun broke through to Meridian Opening. The former is gossip you hear from a couple of the people working in your home, while the latter is news you get in a letter delivered by Feng Jun. After these breakthroughs you...>return to training until the celebration of your engagement, you can just congratulate them then.>go visit Feng Jun, you need to congratulate them and ask him how he's doing.>go visit Duan Pin, you need to congratulate him... and possible ask for a rematch. There should still be a gap, but hopefully it's smaller than before.>OtherLast update for the night, thanks for voting.>>3706912Surprisingly no. Your blood seems to be just enough to keep it from dying. Given your inquiries into the Red-Gold fruit you also found out that it around 60-70 years for that tree to yield one fruit, meaning that with nine buds it will take nearly 500 years for one particular bud to mature into a ripe fruit.
>>3706926>>return to training until the celebration of your engagement, you can just congratulate them then.We need to make a break through with these techniques
>>3706926>>go visit Feng Jun, you need to congratulate them and ask him how he's doing.Given our purer bloodline, and are now a better foundation we should easily close the gap soon. We should get to the middle stage of blood and viscera and challenge him then. We're becoming competent with our usage of speed and once we close that gap we will be just one stage away we should easily best him. And earn our way to the top. We could likely get away with it now, with our now better techniques and filled in the foundation. Along with being the same tier now at least.>>3706926also by better foundation does he mean our training wasn't as suited since we didn't have all of these training ground to temper and practice with our body?
>>3706959Yeah I'm pretty sure we just didn't have the beat tools during our previous stages, giving our families lack of amazing cultivation supplies, and that fruit just smoothed out our previous stages.
>>3700044Generally speaking if you could fine the time to do some these it would be great. We also dont want to make it to tedious for you. So flesh out what you can about this world and the people we associate with that would be cool to have.
>>3706926>go visit Feng Jun, you need to congratulate them and ask him how he's doing.
Updated the character sheet, I'll make an update in an hour or two.
You'll go visit Feng Jun and congratulate him on your breakthrough, its been a while since you talked. You head to the area where the inner disciples live. Quite a few people throw surprised glances at you and a couple inner disciples congratulate you on your breakthrough, but you manage to reach Feng Jun's house without many delays.You enter Feng Jun's house, which is moderately sized. It has a bedroom, a bathroom, and a few other rooms. It's not luxurious, but it's more than good enough. Naturally if Feng Jun wanted to live the life of a mortal he could get a far larger house with the strength and money that comes from being a cultivator, but space is more limited on Horned Island, and with it the amount of property one is given is also limited.Upon entering Feng Jun notices you and the two of you greet each other, congratulate each other on your breakthroughs, and then begin chatting. Feng Jun doesn't seem to have many friends among the inner disciples but is doing well enough here. Having broken through to Meridian Opening at 25 means he's behind most of the inner disciples, but he is "not the worst" by his own metric, which is good.The two of you chat for a couple hours, and after a while you think about his future. Feng Jun is a good friend that you could trust. Maybe it's worth trying to move him to the Liu family? Then again, he could be better off here. You...>ask him if he's interested in serving the Liu family once you leave Horned Island. There's plenty of places where he could work.>ask Feng Jun if he could keep his ears to the ground on Horned Island and inform you if anything happens while you're away. You can get a couple pairs of long-distance Sound Transmission Talismans from Zhu Chao so that Feng Jun can contact you.>say nothing about the Liu family or keeping up with news here. Feng Jun is just a friend and now hes found a good place to train, you may as well just let him practice here and try his best to become someone on Horned Island.>Other
>>3708536>>ask him if he's interested in serving the Liu family once you leave Horned Island. There's plenty of places where he could work.Might as well see if he'd like to join
>>3708536>>ask Feng Jun if he could keep his ears to the ground on Horned Island and inform you if anything happens while you're away. You can get a couple pairs of long-distance Sound Transmission Talismans from Zhu Chao so that Feng Jun can contact you.We need some one in the north.
>>3708565It's also better for his cultivation. Much better resources here on horned island and less a drag on resources on our family. So it's good, leaves us with a contact besides our soon to be wife. To chat and train with. When we are up here.
>>3708536>>ask him if he's interested in serving the Liu family once you leave Horned Island. There's plenty of places where he could work.
>>3708601Wait I'd like to change it to something else. ;-;>ask Feng Jun if he could keep his ears to the ground on Horned Island and inform you if anything happens while you're away. You can get a couple pairs of long-distance Sound Transmission Talismans from Zhu Chao so that Feng Jun can contact you.>>3708578Makes a good point.
You'd like someone keeping an eye out for you here. You should consider leaving some way for Duan Tao to communicate with you just in case since he has level to high-level knowledge, but you don't trust him as much. Even if it's just for major events, it'd be helpful to have Feng Jun here to keep you up to date. "Brother Feng, I was wondering if you'd do me a favor and keep watch on Horned Island for me. I'm part of another faction in Yutian Country, and I'll be leaving here soon. Once I'm gone, it will be beneficial to have someone keeping an eye out for me."Feng Jun nods after you say this and slaps you on the shoulder. "Of course, I don't mind keeping a watch on everything happening here for you. If you give me a way to contact you I can tell you of anything that happens here." Well, that's good. Still, maybe you should consider adding more people to this. Having someone to keep you up to date of what's going on in Horned Island is all well and good, but maybe if you had Feng Jun keep in contact with some people across the cities surrounding the Holy Lake it would be more helpful? They usually spend their time on the island after all. Still, the downside would be that it creates more evidence- Feng Jun would have to leave occasionally to contact someone in charge of them, or get some outer disciple to do so for him. It's not like it's breaking any rules to do so, but if anyone knows he's feeding information to you it could affect him. You...>leave after chatting a bit more, information on what's happening here is good enough.>provide him with some money and ask him to hire a few people in the five cities surrounding Holy Lake to track the news there for him. It won't be a large expense for you if they're just civilians, and even if they find out, what are they going to do? Stop Feng Jun from accessing information that's publicly known on Horned Island? That's almost impossible, and if they did anything excessive they'd be risking your wrath.>ask him to keep up on news whenever he visits one of the cities surrounding Holy Lake. it takes less effort and he might still find something useful doing that.>Other
>>3708794>>provide him with some money and ask him to hire a few people in the five cities surrounding Holy Lake to track the news there for him. It won't be a large expense for you if they're just civilians, and even if they find out, what are they going to do? Stop Feng Jun from accessing information that's publicly known on Horned Island? That's almost impossible, and if they did anything excessive they'd be risking your wrath. Horned island isnt hurt by this. If anything trains Feng in a good way for us and he becomes a info merchant of sorts. Keeps him updated. Potentially helping others giving him more acess to better info.
>>3708794>>leave after chatting a bit more, information on what's happening here is good enough.
Tiebreaker by RNG in 30 minutes.
Rolled 1 (1d2)>>3709080>>3708888
You know what, there's no harm in having Feng Jun gather more information. If anyone is actually trying to keep an eye on you and finds out then this will be a negative, but if someone was really scheming against you here, then would Feng Jun even be able to find out either way?Before you leave you leave Feng Jun with a few thousand gold and tell him to use it to start setting up informants in the five cities surrounding the Holy Lake. He could probably do so with less money, but it's not like you're short on cash right now- you're sitting on herbs you need to sell and Horned Island will likely provide you with a sizable amount of funds when you leave.With this new plan, if anything important came up Feng Jun will need to do the same thing as before and use one of the long-distance sound transmission talismans. If there's less important but useful news, he'll collect it all and send it to you through some sort of secure courier once per month. There will be a delay of a month in receiving the news, but oh well.After finalizing your plans you tell Feng Jun goodbye, and he cheerfully tells you that he'll start on it in a few days. It seems like he was looking for a way to repay you for getting him into Horned Island and providing him with that Red-Gold fruit, so he's actually pretty happy about this duty.You visit Duan Pin on the way back, but he's out so you just leave a message congratulating him. The next day your engagement is made public, and you're scheduled to have a celebration in three days. In the coming days you...>train your battle techniques and wait.>spar a bit and test out your new-found strength.>visit Green City to sell of your herbs and give Zhu Chao a definite date on when you're returning to either the Liu family or Border City. >visit one of the cities surrounding the Holy Lake, you've only seen Green City.>visit some people, you have a few invitations for thinly-veiled parties from other juniors after your recent breakthrough. It seems like people like any excuse to celebrate.>Other
>>3709340>>train your battle techniques and wait.>>spar a bit and test out your new-found strengthTrain and spar..dont see why they would be mutually exclusive.
You send someone to decline the invitations and return to your training. You need to focus and polish up your techniques before you return home. Ideally you'll be able to beat your brother in a fight by then, but that may be out of reach. Still, you'll try your best. You continue practicing your movement technique and training 72 Desires. With your level of strength you should be able to use 6 Desires with a couple of days worth of effort. You're already very familiar with the technique, so it won't take long.A couple of days have passed and you have successfully used 6 Desires. You can use it once while still being able to fight, although using it twice is too much for now. You sparred against some inner and core disciples at Middle and Late Blood and Viscera Tempering. You defeated all of them at Middle Blood and Viscera Tempering, and won against one inner disciple at Late Blood and Viscera Tempering (out of three). Your speed is still lacking against them, but given the purity of your bloodline combined with your movement technique, it's already equal to someone at Middle Blood and Viscera Tempering. At this rate you really will be stronger than your brother when you return to the Liu family.The next day you have the celebration for your engagement. You dress well and spend a while making sure you're in top shape, and then go from your backyard to Duan Tao's home, where it's being held. You're a bit early, and you spend that time speaking to Duan Tao and Duan Bao and double checking your appearance. Once the first people arrive you...>try to speak with those who look important and build some connections.>have short conversations and try to speak to as many people as you can, as one of the guests of honor you should make sure no one is ignored.>stay by Duan Bao and speak to her, you're not sure about the etiquette here but given that this is to celebrate the engagement it seems rude to leave her for other guests. You'll just follow her around.>Other
>>3709527>>stay by Duan Bao and speak to her, you're not sure about the etiquette here but given that this is to celebrate the engagement it seems rude to leave her for other guests. You'll just follow her around.
You sit next to Duan Bao as she speaks to a few guests, and she... seems colder than usual. You suppose this is annoying to her, you've never really gone to a social event with her before. Most of the people end up chatting with you instead, and you try to get Duan Bao involved in the conversations, but she indirectly declines. Oh well, that's that. You speak to other disciples and elders for a long time before getting a chance to have a break and eat.After you meal it's back to mingling with the guests, none of which you speak to for long. As soon as you've gotten a good idea of one person, another switches in. It's basically nonstop talking. Feng Jun doesn't approach you, likely because he's focusing on this idea of going 'undercover' so that he doesn't arouse any suspicion. You doubt it's hidden information that you brought him here among the elders, but if he enjoys it then you don't mind.The afternoon and most of the evening passes before everything is over. Duan Bao immediately leaves, looking more than a bit stressed. You don't mind that much, as you're fine with events like these (as long as they don't interrupt your practice too much), but you suppose there are all kinds of people. You chat with Duan Tao for a few minutes before returning to your home, training for a few hours, and sleeping.You returned to your training, and planned to leave Horned Island...>the next day.>in a week.>in two weeks.>in a month.>in two or three months.>Other
>>3710038>>in two or three months
>>3710038>>in a month.Just train and cultivate. Maybe talk to Duan Bao, my guess is she's not happy about forced marriage
I'll use RNG if there isn't a tiebreaker in an hour.
>>3710188Makes sense train our self and our techniques with all of their training grounds.
>>3710189Gah meant to quote you. We should focus on building a stronger foundation and our battle techniques. With sparing and training here at horned island. Come back home and wreck shit.
You plan to leave Horned Island in a month, after taking the chance to polish your battle techniques. After that you can spend a month or two in the Northern Wastes, or you could opt to leave immediately. You'll leave that for later.You worry slightly about Duan Bao's attitude at the celebration of the engagement and visit her a couple of times, indirectly asking about it, but as far as you can tell she just hates dealing with crowds and "talking to people who don't matter about nothing". Well, you guess not everyone is an extrovert. As long as it's not a sign of a larger problem then there's not much to worry about.Feng Jun leaves a few days after the party to begin hiring people to feed him information. You wish him the best, but you don't see him off, as per his request. He did visit you to tell you this, but he didn't come through the front- he came through an unused servant's entrance, disguised as a cook. It was surprising and unneeded, but at least he ended up doing you a favor, and you had the exit immediately removed and replaced with more fence.Over the next month, not much of importance happens. You take a short trip to Green City to get two long-distance Sound Transmission talismans to give to Feng Jun so that he can contact you if needed, but don't stop for anything else in Green City- the vast majority of that visit was travelling. After that You get more invitations but you ignore them, focusing on your training. Your movement is beginning to plateau after practicing it for so long, and you finally begin picking up the "Nine Gusts Halberd." Each blow accumulates more and more momentum, building up to a final blow with a massive amount of force behind it. You should be able to learn all nine given enough time, and possible a couple of minor breakthroughs. Before you leave you end up properly pulling off 4, and sometimes 5 blows without trouble.After the month is over you inform Duan Tao of your departure, and he asks when you plan on returning. That's difficult since you'll need to be in the Liu family for a while, but it definitely won't be for the next year. You just give him the vague date of "two to five years" and he nods. "Alright then, since you'll be leaving for a while, consider this our support while you're gone." Duan Tao opens up an iron chest and begins takes out several stacks of bills. "Here's 80,000 gold coins. It's not a small amount, and it should be enough to last you for a few years. And lastly..." Duan Tao takes a long-distance sound transmission talisman out of his pocket. "You can use this to contact me from most of Yutian Country and the surrounding countries. I wish you the best."
You leave early in the morning, and reach Green City in the afternoon. After making sure no one is following you you return to the Apothecary's Guild and are shown to Zhu Chao, who is currently surrounding by dozens of books. His eyes are a deep red, and his face is covered in stubble. Upon entering he doesn't respond, and you have to speak a few times to get his attention. "Oh... you're here. I was just... reading. That 'master' apothecary was getting a bit too smug given his cultivation despite his lack of skill, so I was trying to show him up a bit." "How long have you been awake?" Zhu Chao freezes as you say this, before shrugging. "Maybe a week, maybe longer. I'll be fine if I sleep tonight. More importantly, is it time to return? Getting away from that smug bastard sounds great." You...>tell him that yes, you're planning to go home now.>tell him you'd like to travel to Red City and visit the Refiners' Guild first.>tell him you'd like to stop in Border City for a while and improve your refining.>Other
>>3710524>>tell him you'd like to stop in Border City for a while and improve your refining
>>3710524>>tell him you'd like to stop in Border City for a while and improve your refining.
>Zhu Chao has acquired: RIVAL
You're technically a disciple of Refiner Long, but you never took the chance to actually learn anything from him. You should stop by Border City for a while an improve your ability at refining treasures. A well-rounded cultivator should have a profession, and you're no exception. You tell Zhu Chao this, and he seems to think about something. "Alright. I'll carry you there and instead of two weeks we should get there in a bit more than a week. After that I'll run back here, take care of some... business, and then return to Border City. Three months is the latest I can delay your return, any longer and I fear that something could happen. Your position has already weakened with your 'seclusion', although it will recover after everyone sees the progress you've made."You leave Green City that day, and Zhu Chao, true to his word, carries you on his back at several times someone's normal speed. Eventually he decides to surpass even that, and you make the trip to Border City in an ungodly five days. He seems to be a bit tired after it, but that's definitely an experience you won't forget. At first you were annoyed because it looked stupid, but passing people on the road at a speed they could only imagine was hilarious- Zhu Chao seemed to purposely speed up then.After arriving in Border City you immediately go Refiner Long's manor, where the person manning the gate lets you in after you show the token Refiner Long gave you. Upon entering the mansion you immediately see a familiar voice chatting near the entrance, and you head towards it. After heading down the hall and into a side room, you find Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin chatting with each other. As you enter they immediately stop what they're saying, and instead of greeting you, they freeze. They seem shocked. Cai Fang is the first one to recover, and you take a seat. "You've made quite a bit of progress while you were gone, congratulations! I wasn't sure if you were going to return, but it's nice to see you." A moment after that Kinzoku Qin starts speaking as well. You both catch up for a few minutes, and the two invite you out to 'celebrate your reunion'. Although you don't know them well, you guess they are your fellow disciples, so it's natural. You...>decline their offer, you need to speak to Refiner Long first.>accept the offer, you can greet Refiner Long and find out where to go from here in the morning.>OtherThat's the last update for the night, thanks for voting.
>>3710723>>accept the offer, you can greet Refiner Long and find out where to go from here in the morning.
>>3710723>accept the offer, you can greet Refiner Long and find out where to go from here in the morning.I think he'd be upset if we disturbed his sleep.
>>3710723>>accept the offer, you can greet Refiner Long and find out where to go from here in the morningFocus on our upgrade ranged+ strong blow. Blacksmith like crazy till Chao comes back.
>>3710723>accept the offer, you can greet Refiner Long and find out where to go from here in the morning.I don't see why not,having the main disciple of Master Long as our friend seems pretty usefull.
I feel like shit right now, so I probably won't update today. Hopefully it's just allergies or something.
>>3711953Mhmm alright feel better. If you get the chance, some basic info on regions if you've already hashed them out in your head.
I'm feeling better now after I rested a bit, I should be fine by tomorrow. I'll finally get around to writing up some character/location info tonight.
Session starting in half an hour to an hour. I added location info to the pastebin.
Well, it's pretty late. Refiner Long can wait until tomorrow then, for all you know he might be asleep. The three of you leave the manor and you're led into a bar nearby. It's not like you can get drunk on anything they serve, so you begin sparingly drinking while speaking to Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin."God, that old man... he's a good teacher, but his training methods are brutal." As Cai Fang says this Kinzoku Qin nods in agreement. "Brutal? How so?" Cai Fang stares at you, an odd look in his eyes. "Have you ever forged bricks for hours straight in searing heat, even when you could barely hold the hammer?" Cai Fang shudders after saying this. "It will be nice to have someone else here to share the pain." ...That's ominous, but if you're learning you guess you don't mind.Eventually the talk turns away from Refiner Long's "spartan" training methods, and Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin leave their seats. "Downstairs they have a few mahjong tables, want to have some fun?" You...>accept, it will only be small sums among friends anyways, it doesn't matter if you lose a little bit.>ask if they mind poker instead. If you're going to gamble with them, you want to do something you know how to play.>decline, even if it's just for fun you'd rather not. You can just watch.>Other
>>3714752>>accept, it will only be small sums among friends anyways, it doesn't matter if you lose a little bit.Might as well learn
>>3714752>>accept, it will only be small sums among friends anyways, it doesn't matter if you lose a little bit.We will have to learn some how.
>>3714930Well fuck.. I guess we wont have much time to train..if it's going to be a spartan training session while we are hear. Fuck it. We may as well gain that experience, and it's a tempering of some kind.
Rolled 3, 82, 100, 84 = 269 (4d100)Well, you don't have an experience but you may as well. It's not something you'd do for fun but you don't have anything against gambling as long as the stakes don't get too high. You accept, noting that you don't know the rules. After a quick rundown on hands and the basic rules you follow Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin downstairs, which is honestly more crowded than the bar upstairs. There are four or five mahjong tables, and all but one are full.The three of you approach the empty table as Cai Fang continues going over the rules. Kinzoku Qin leaves for a moment, and returns with a man in his 40s. "Here's our fourth, he was with a group of five." The four of you sit down at the table, and Kinzoku Qin begins going over the payout. "1000 points equals 5 gold coins, and the umas are +20 for first, +10 for second, -10 for third, and -20 for last place. We'll play three han chan sessions. Anyone opposed?" No one says anything, and so the everyone begins. Random man+10, Kinzoku Qin+0, Cai Fang+25, You-30
The four of you begin playing the first session, and much to your surprise, you aren't in last. Even with your loose understanding of the rules and inability to judge hands well, you can tell that the man Kinzoku Qin got to join you guys is having horrible luck. He's not able to assemble a proper hand, and he deals into several of Cai Fang's big hands.Your luck is good, but with your skill dragging you down you settle into a steady third place. Cai Fang is maintaining first place throughout every session, and his luck seems practically godlike. Partway through the second session he gets a yakuman after the man with horrible luck deals into his wait. After that you can tell that he was considering leaving early, but he stuck to his word and stayed through all three sessions. You were starting to get a better hang of the game towards the end, but everyone except that poor man in his 40s was doing significantly better than you.In the end the man lost 730 gold coins, while you lose 415. Despite taking second every session Kinzoku Qin makes a measly five gold coins due to Cai Fang steamrolling everyone and winning 1140 gold coins.Cai Fang laughs about how luck was on his side tonight and tries to extend the game longer, but no one wants to take him up on that offer. After you're done you chat a bit and then return to the manor.The next morning you get and immediately go to visit Refiner Long. Luckily he's not busy, and you're able to meet him without trouble. Upon entering the room he seems surprised to see you, and then stands still for a few seconds. "Your cultivation... you've made great progress recently. I'll need to evaluate you again. In order to push you to your limits, we first must find those limits. What do you want me to test first: stamina, strength, delicacy, or skill?" You tell him that you want the...>stamina test first.>strength test first.>delicacy test first.>skill test first.Yakuman: Largest category of hand in terms of point value.Wait: Tiles a player does not possess in the hand, but they are wanted tiles either by draw or discardFinal scores: +75, +3, -28, -50; +82, -2, -31, -49; +71, 0, -24, -47
>>3715054>>strength test first.
>>3715054>>strength test first
>>3715054>>skill test first.I think this is our worst quality. We should have him recognize that. OP what level of cultivation would you say the average blacksmith gets up to? And are there blacksmiths that are not cultivators? And how we avg? Just curious
>>3715335There are blacksmiths that aren't cultivators, although they wouldn't be considered refiners. They make tools, weapons, and armor for mortals and mortal soldiers. Some of the most talented make could make something usable for a Strength Rendering or Flesh Tempering cultivator without being a cultivator themselves, but anything beyond that would be unthinkable.As for the average refiner, it's almost the same as an average cultivator. It's a different skillset, and becoming a great refiner is something separate from becoming a great cultivator. You can have high talent in one aspect and no talent in the other. The only reason refiners would have a slightly lower mean cultivation is because some of them ignore their cultivation in favor of improving their refining, but it's generally the other way around until old age.(Cultivation is harder to increase at an old age, while one can still pick up a profession then).anyways, writing now
"I'd prefer to test my strength first." You may as well go with your strengths first. Skill and delicacy probably won't go well. Refiner Long nods, and then gestures for you to follow him. He brings you out of the manor and into a storehouse nearby. Tools for forging and various ingredients for refining treasures are messily scattered throughout the place.Refiner Long mutters something to himself as he looks around. After a few seconds of this he grabs a hammer several feet in length and an ingot of metal. He hands the two things to you with a "Here you go." and points at an anvil in the corner. "Just hit it."You're slightly confused, but follow the instructions. Hitting the ingot of metal with all your strength leaves an inch-deep imprint on it. Refiner Long nods in satisfaction. "Alright then, hit this." Refiner Long throws a plate of a different metal at you. You catch it, place it down, and then hit it with as much force as you can put into your hammer. It leaves a mark, but it's not as deep as last time.When you look back at Refiner Long, you see that he's holding five plates and ingots of various metals. "I'll line these up from softest to hardest, and you can go at them. If you leave a mark with that hammer, you pass. And obviously you can't heat them up to make them more malleable, that's cheating."Refiner Long sits down on a crate in the corner, and you're left to your test. You hit the next ingot, and see that you left a faint imprint on it. It's barely there, but your first blow did something. At this rate you're worried if you even have a chance of getting past the fifth of these seven, but you shake those thoughts out of your head and continue. You pound at the fourth piece of metal, and... nothing happens. This continues for a couple of minutes, until one of your blows manages to leave an extremely thin imprint on the piece of metal.You stares at the next piece of metal. You probably won't be able to do anything to this normally, but either way you need to try. You...>pick up your hammer and begin pounding at it, all you can do is try your best.>ask Refiner Long if you can use your guandao, if you unleash 6 Desires then you might be able to do it.>Other>>3715335>>3715374I did leave one thing out of this that I feel the need to clarify- people who specialize in an occupation may have a lower combat strength at the same cultivation than someone who focuses solely on combat. Even if they cultivate the same amount, other cultivators may have learned battle techniques in the time they were learning to forge pills or make weapons. Naturally these occupations also have benefits on a cultivator's strength, but they're not as direct as just training battle techniques or spending more time cultivating.
>>3715435>>pick up your hammer and begin pounding at it, all you can do is try your best.He specifically said hit it with a hammer, we just have to put our all into it!!!!
>>3715435>>pick up your hammer and begin pounding at it, all you can do is try your best.No point in using a battle skill.. we should do the best we can. With the tools we should be using or it's mostly not as useful. >>3715374Is there a rough range for the avg cultivators level and age?Besides people from the top?Like 20's is for blood and viscera but for cultivation famies it's late teens such thing? Just trying to get a better understanding of where we stand in the world. Like I guess most middle aged people get to the meridian opening stage?
>>3715435>>pick up your hammer and begin pounding at it, all you can do is try your best>>3715374Thanks for the info I was thinking of reading the wuxia you mentioned that this is based around. Might try and get around to that sooner rather than later.
Why don't we use that combo technique that makes subsequent hits harder?
>>3715561That's for our weapon not a hammer. That would be a blacksmith specific skill. Which we could likely buy or learn.
>>3715591I don't see why we couldn't improv it on the fly to work with this hammer. Even if we could only get it to work with two hits it'd be better than nothing.
Yeah, I'm sure there are a couple skills we could learn from long that he has picked up along the way that he didnt create. So it shouldn't be much of an issue for him to teach us. For blacksmithing
>>3715619I mean I guess we could try.. but that's like using a sword vs a mace/hammer to bludgeon something. They have different center weights. And experience means a lot. And practice makes perfect. But I'm not opposed to trying it with the hammer. But just saying leverage is a thing that might make the skill possible. No idea. Dont think it's a great idea. But I'll vote with you..intrested if our guy is that much a genius to get by using it on a hammer.
>>3715639Well a guandao handles differently than a halberd and the technique was meant for a halberd. Halberds sometimes sport hammer-like protrusions. Sure the balance would be really off since this hammer is only fourish feet long but adjusting the balance we made in reverse would probably be easier to pull off than trying fresh to adjust for the guandao like we did on the island. Worst case scenario is that it doesn't really do anything but all we are doing is slamming a hammer onto a piece of metal so it's not really going to hurt us to try. I was just spitballing tho. >inb4 we get a splinter if we try
You probably shouldn't ask to use your guandao. It seems like it defeats the purpose of the test. You grab your guandao and begin hitting at the piece of metal and, as expected, nothing happens. How can you increase the force of your blow? The first thing that comes to mind is to simply get stronger, but that would require either a life or death situation or enough time to train. Besides that you could utilize some sort of battle technique, but you don't know any hammer techniques.As you think about this, your mind turns towards your existing techniques. Could you alter any of them to work with a hammer? No, you couldn't. Still, there are things to learn from them. Both the Nine Gusts Halberd and the guandao fundamentals you were taught by the Yu family talk about momentum. Momentum is built up over consecutive blows, and eventually used to create a greater force than an individual blow could. Maybe you apply this to the hammer?You tentatively swing the hammer and try to immediately pull it up to chain the blow into a second one, but it just results in two similar strikes. You aren't familiar with using a hammer in combat, and it might not be a weapon well-suited to this. As you're thinking about this, you have another idea. You might not have been able to build up momentum across two blows, but what about one, extended blow. Your first attempt is one that zig-zags through the air, but it doesn't build up force- it actually ends up being a lighter hit than before.A few more tries later and you spin it through the air in a circular motion. You slam it onto the piece of metal, but since you missed the right timing and the blow is lighter than a normal one. You repeat this a few more times, until eventually you get the timing right. The force of a single blow seems to have increased! ...The only problem is the blows take significantly more time and effort than before. You turn around as you wipe the sweat off your brow, and you see Refiner Long, who seems to be holding in laughter.The smirk disappears from Refiner Long's face as you turn to him, and he stares at you. "..Is that it then?" You...>shake your head and start hitting the piece of metal normally, if you wait long enough you might be able to do something.>shake your head and return to your experimentation. Maybe you'll come up with something.>tell him you're done, you've tried and you don't think it's possible. It's best that you don't waste his time.>Other
>>3715713>>shake your head and return to your experimentation. Maybe you'll come up with something.Cheeky bastard, I'll show you I'll minorly scar this ingot if it's the last thing I do.
>>3715523I didn't base this around anything specific, but I do remember mentioning a few I drew some inspiration from, so feel free to. I still need to read Way Of Choices since someone mentioned it in the first thread, but given the time it takes me to read a single Wuxia/Xianxia novel that won't be done for a while.>>3715491The first major bottleneck is at Meridian Opening, and the majority of cultivators don't break through that bottleneck in their lifetime. This is naturally different for anyone who has some sort of backing or someone with good natural talent. The next 'major' bottlenecks are from Meridian Opening to Qi Emission and from Dantian Creation to Acupoint Opening.If you want ages I can give them later, I had them worked out and have been going by them but I never took the time to write them down.
>>3715713>>shake your head and return to your experimentation. Maybe you'll come up with something.
>>3715730I've never read a Wuxia story, guess I'll check out way of choices
You shake your head and face the ingot of metal again. You'll figure out something. Over the next several minutes you continue altering the circular motion you were making, finding a slightly better route. It still doesn't help much, and given its aim you feel that this isn't well-suited for actual forging.You put that idea aside, and after some thinking you start tossing the ingot into the air, and then slamming it into the anvil from above. This, as expected, doesn't work. You would hit it in a direction other than the anvil, but in that case you'd smash the walls. As you're thinking about this, you do realize there are a few things this ingot wouldn't break if it was sent flying into with enough force... a stronger piece of metal. You look at the pieces of metal in front of you, and grab the last one. This is definitely strong enough, right? You...>do all you can to forcefully slam the metal ingot into the last piece of metal. You should be able to create a mark by doing that.>write off the possibility and try to use your own force to leave a mark in the metal. Slamming it against the hardest piece of metal available is undermining the point of all this.>Other
>>3715884I can't recommend it either way since I haven't started it yet, I was just told that the MC has similar powers in thread one.
>>3715893>>write off the possibility and try to use your own force to leave a mark in the metal. Slamming it against the hardest piece of metal available is undermining the point of all this.
>>3715893>>do all you can to forcefully slam the metal ingot into the last piece of metal. You should be able to create a mark by doing that.Hey if we use the hammer we aren't cheating only rules where hammer and no heat.
>>3715893>>write off the possibility and try to use your own force to leave a mark in the metal. Slamming it against the hardest piece of metal available is undermining the point of all this>>3715957I dont really think there were rules.
Also what do you y'all think about some further experimenting with our blood on plants again?We added 80k for our 40k we made I guess while at horned island. We got a decent amount of money. Before we leave we should invest everything we can into things we know will make a profit taking it back home. Make a tidy sum and ker our family businesses make their own profit. Win for ourselves and a win for the clan.
You put down the ingot and shake your head. No, that's undermining the purpose of this. It might work, but it's not like there are rewards for doing well- this is just so that Refiner Long can figure out the upper limits of your strength during forging.You return to your experimentation, but run out of ideas before long. Eventually you just start hammering on the ingot for five minutes straight, but it doesn't seem like you're going to leave an imprint on it. Despite that you keep trying, but Refiner Long gets up and stops you. "That's enough, I think I have a good idea of your strength. I just added some extra ingots at the end in case... if you could actually do anything past that one then I would need to get my eyes checked." The two of you leave the storage closet, and you're told you have a little while to rest while he prepares the next test. He asks you what you'd like to do next and you say you'd prefer the...>skill test.>speed test.>delicacy test.
You guess you'll take the skill test next. It's probably one of your weaker points, so you may as well get it out of the way. You tell Refiner Long this and he just says to come to the forge where you made the brick whenever you're ready.After a short rest you head to the shack where you made the brick months ago and, much to your relief, it's nowhere near as hot as last time. The ventilation is greatly improved, but the room is nearly the same otherwise. Once you enter, Refiner Long immediately speaks. "Alright, make me a wok. One that a mortal would use." ...A wok? That's pretty simple, but alright then. "Do you want any designs on it?" "Your choice, just make a wok."Well then, you guess you're left to your own devices then. You grab some cheap metal that a mortal blacksmith might use and...>make an extremely ordinary wok.>make a wok with intricate designs of tasty food and flames on the side, you may as well add your own flair to it.>make a rust-proof wok with a mixture of this cheap metal and a few others. It may as well be sturdy if nothing else.>make a wok with an extremely high melting point. If you mix the metal you're using with another slightly more expensive one, it should still fit within the confines of a 'mortal' one.>Other
>>3716417>>make a rust-proof wok with a mixture of this cheap metal and a few others. It may as well be sturdy if nothing elseCheap and useful is the perfect mixture
>>3716417>>make a rust-proof wok with a mixture of this cheap metal and a few others. It may as well be sturdy if nothing else.
>>3716417>>make a wok with an extremely high melting point. If you mix the metal you're using with another slightly more expensive one, it should still fit within the confines of a 'mortal' one.
You take a few other cheap types of metal you're familiar with and begin combining them in a 4:3:2:1 ratio. The melting temperature is far lower than for the types of metal you'd normally use, and it's annoyingly precise. You accidentally set it too high on your first try, but on the second it's within range. After that you begin shaping it, and... it's just too weak. Your first blow sends part of it flying across the room, and you're forced to control your strength carefully like that. You can control your strength, but it's a bit harder when you're normally forced to use all you have when forging something.After those incidents you finish the wok without issue, and sand the surface. Refiner Long takes a look at it and then sets it aside. "Alright then, you took... let's say 30 minutes. Make this wok again for me in ten." ...Ten minutes? What the hell?! Before you can respond Refiner Long begins counting down and you...>hurry to make something in the shape of a wok, you can't do much in this time limit.>start mixing the ores together as fast as you can, he said 'this wok', meaning you need to do it exactly the same.>grab your wok back and melt it down, since it's already made out of the alloy you need you can make a rustproof wok out of it faster. It's a little cheaty, but you only have ten fucking minutes.>OtherAnd that's it for the night, thanks for voting.
>>3716520>grab your wok back and melt it down, since it's already made out of the alloy you need you can make a rustproof wok out of it faster. It's a little cheaty, but you only have ten fucking minutes.
>>3716520>>grab your wok back and melt it down, since it's already made out of the alloy you need you can make a rustproof wok out of it faster. It's a little cheaty, but you only have ten fucking minutes
Starting in half an hour.
You don't have any time. Thinking quickly, you grab the wok you just made and start melting it down again. It will save time to have this alloy prepared ahead of time for you. Refiner Long chuckles as you do this, but doesn't say anything. You try to raise the temperature to the correct one in one shot, but you manage to come to your senses and begin carefully fine-tuning it before using it to melt down the wok.After melting down the wok you begin messily forging it into the general shape of the wok. Sanding off the edges, getting rid of uneven parts- nothing like that matters right now. As long as it's in the shape of a wok it's usable. You manage to shape it and cool it in a barrel of oil within 10 minutes, but you don't get a chance to do much else. The wok is lumpy and frail, but it is a wok.Refiner Long looks over the wok once again before placing it aside. "Alright, this is the last one. Make that wok, but I want the base to be this." Refiner Long hands you an ingot of metal as he says this. You take a moment to identify it before your face darkens. This is also etrium, but it's higher-quality than the type you made your brick with. It's definitely going to be difficult to forge something out of a metal this strong. ...But maybe if you purposely lower its strength slightly it's be easier. You...>recreate the rust-resistant effect with metals that decrease the overall strength of the etrium on purpose.>use metals that make it rust-resistant without lowering the strength. Trying to lower the overall strength of an item just to make the work easier is a waste of metal.>Other
>>3718077>>use metals that make it rust-resistant without lowering the strength. Trying to lower the overall strength of an item just to make the work easier is a waste of metal.
You shouldn't try to lower the strength of the metal by creating an inferior alloy. It'd simply be a waste of good metal. Even if it's harder, you'll make a decent piece of work at the very least. You begin pounding out the metal as you combine a couple in to create an alloy that's resistant to rust. This increases the total mass of the metal, but you still have to use a bit more than the initial ingot provided to make a decent base for the wok.As you shape the wok you pay careful attention to its shape. If the metal is too thick it won't conduct heat as well, but if it's too thin it will be delicate and heat up too quickly. All in all, if you're off on the thickness by much, it will be difficult to a cook to get used to using the wok. Every item made should have a purpose somewhere, so it'd be a shame if something like that happened.Over the next hour you shape the wok, temper the metal slightly (not as much as with a weapon, but if you're using good metal you should try to toughen it up a bit), and sand the surface extremely thoroughly. Eventually you're done, although you're breathing heavily. You had to use your full force with every blow of your hammer, and to say the least the amount of blow was increased. Still, you finished. You show the wok to Refiner Long and he looks over it for a moment before handing it back to you."Alright then, that concludes the skill test. For the speed test, it's simple. Just hammer this as fast as you can." Refiner Long grabs an ingot of what you just forged the wok out of and hands it to you. You grab the piece of metal and...>begin hammering it as fast as you can, that's what he asked for.>hammer it as fast as you can while maintaining power, if the power is reduced then you'll get less done with two hits than you would with one.>hammer it as fast as you can while maintaining accuracy, if you shape the metal incorrectly that only multiplies your work afterwards.>hammer it as fast as you can while maintaining both power and accuracy, a strike doesn't matter if it's not a good one.>Other
>>3718303>>hammer it as fast as you can while maintaining both power and accuracy, a strike doesn't matter if it's not a good one.A blacksmith makes good work not trash. And practice makes perfect.
>>3718303>>hammer it as fast as you can while maintaining power, if the power is reduced then you'll get less done with two hits than you would with one.
Rolled 2 (1d2)>>3718330>>3718389
Alright then, that's simple enough. You need to keep accuracy and speed in mind though- without them the blow doesn't matter. Although, now that you think about it, accuracy doesn't really matter here since you're not shaping the piece of metal into anything in particular. You guess it's fine as long as you hit the metal then, you just need to maintain the power behind your blows!You begin hammering the ingot as fast as you can, only taking the time to maintain your form and exert the maximum force possible. This continues for around a minute as you frantically bring the hammer up and down, and it's exactly more tiring than you'd expect. Eventually you hear Refiner Long say to stop. "That's enough for a day, I'm getting a good idea of your abilities and where you'll need to improve. I'm also glancing into your mindset as a refiner. Meet with me tomorrow morning and we'll do the last test. It will probably take a while to get through the stamina test based on your performance last time."Refiner Long leaves as he says this, and you...>ask if he has any books on refining you can refer to, you should learn while you're here.>take a short break before forging something, you should make some things while you're here. You have access to some of the materials here for free after all, although you still need to ask what exactly you can use.>go to the battle arena and see if there are any interesting fights.>meet up with Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin and see if they want to hang out again tonight, you have nothing else to do.>Other
>>3718824>>ask if he has any books on refining you can refer to, you should learn while you're here
After Cai Fang's luck yesterday you're not eager to go out with them a second day in a row since you may be parted from several hundred gold coins if you do. You've already seen a good portion of the city, so you may as well do some reading while you're here. Refining isn't just about experience after all, there is knowledge involved. Refiner Long acknowledged this by making the first test to become his disciple a written one.You ask Refiner Long if he has any books on refining you can refer to before he leaves, and he tells you that you're free to look around his personal library if you wish. The only restriction is that you can't touch anything one the small bookshelf in the corner. He has a servant nearby show you to the room, and leaves.You're brought to library. It's a small, well-organized room with bookshelves covering the walls. Most of them nearly reach the ceiling, but there is one small one with a massive map of Yutian Country and Hiqiu Sect hanging above it. You see some markings and scribbles on it. You look at the bookshelves, and as far as you can one is dedicated to tools, mining, and other supplementary parts of becoming a refiner. Another is information on materials used for refining treasures, famous refiners, and well-known treasures. The last bookshelf has more practical knowledge on alloys that can be created using multiple methods, experiences of various refiners, and just all-around advice.You...>grab a few books about things such as tools and mining, you don't know much about the topics.>take some books about materials and refining history, there's a massive amount of knowledge to be found there.>get a few books about refiners' experiences and more practical advice, it's not as good as having someone give you pointers, but it's still helpful.>see if anyone is in the hallway and then look at the small bookshelf, you're curious what could be on it.>examine the map more closely, you can't read the markings from here.>Other
>>3719196>>examine the map more closely, you can't read the markings from here.
>>3719196>>grab a few books about things such as tools and mining, you don't know much about the topicsDont think we will be mining but, seems like thing we can keep reading while here. Increase our overall knowledge about refining. While we train under long.
>>3719196>examine the map more closely, you can't read the markings from here.
Curious, you approach the map and begin looking at the markings on it. In small, neat handwriting you see the names of dozens of metals written across The Northern Wastes. Those must be where mines or areas that trade the metal in question are located.You begin scanning over them closely and see that there are a few unique markings. On Blue City there's a scribble that says "They wouldn't tell me what the that metal on the bottom of their ships was. Investigate further." A date of more than 20 years ago is scribbled next to it. ...You're curious if he's wondering about the material the four god clans use to scare off Scaled Palace's creatures in the Holy Lake, but it doesn't really matter. There's also a note written on top of Green City. "Never visit here again. Apothecary Guild's head is a smug bastard with his head too far up his ass to see the world around him." It seems that Refiner Long shares something in common with Zhu Chao.Besides that there aren't many remarkable notes, although you do see a few camps marked deep into the wilderness. You begin scanning over Yutian Country, and see that the names of metals are more sparsely marked, but they're still there. A few major families are also written down, and on the eastern edge of the map you see a big x drawn over the area the Hi family holds influence over. There's just a note next to it which says "That untalented old man will croak before I do, and it will be a glorious day." The date next to it is more than 40 years old.Hiqiu Sect is also on the map, but the markings there are all ordinary besides one that just says "Remember to visit cousin." Next to it there's a series of dates with roughly 10 years in between each one.That was interesting, but ultimately not very helpful. You begin picking out books. You get a couple books on mining and mine safety, one on 'how to properly market weapons', and Advanced Anvils: An Amazing Anvil Assistant. These aren't areas you know much about, so they should be interesting. You leave the room and return to the room you're staying in for the time being, reading until it's time to sleep.You wake up in the morning after being pulled into Mining Magic: An Overview of Mining Safety Protocol. The topic wasn't interesting, but the author was very witty. It seems you have some time until Refiner Long is awake. You...>head to the battle arena to watch a match, maybe that 'champion' from before is still there.>return to your reading, there is knowledge to be gained.>get breakfast and wander around the city, that'd be nice.>Other
>>3719468>>return to your reading, there is knowledge to be gained.
>>3719468>>return to your reading, there is knowledge to be gained.We should get to finish these and get to a different set of books..cover our weak points.
>>3719468>return to your reading, there is knowledge to be gained.
You sit down and continue going through the books you chose. There's knowledge to be gained, and you're not going to ignore it for something unimportant. Several hours pass as you read about sending canaries down mine shafts and the "nine fundamentals of anvils". Eventually Refiner Long is free, and you go to his room, ready to have your stamina evaluated.Refiner Long doesn't say much and leads you to the shack where you forged that brick months ago. It is even more scorching than last time, but the heat is about the same for you due to your increase in cultivation. Once you enter, Refiner Long asks if you remembered forging that brick. You respond that you do, and he just nods his head and says good. There's a short pause before he takes a seat and says "Make me another brick. Once you're done, you get 10 minutes to rest. After that you'll make another one, ad infinitum."...So this is the test of stamina. You guess it will certainly be testing. You're not sure if you'd be able to make it past two. You're handed some metal by Refiner Long and begin making bricks until...>they're no longer good bricks. Even bricks need to meet a certain benchmark.>you pass out. This is a test of stamina, so you'll carry it out in the end.>OtherThat's the last update for the night, thanks for voting. Hopefully I can start earlier tomorrow.
>>3719791>>you pass out. This is a test of stamina, so you'll carry it out in the end.
>>3719791>you pass out. This is a test of stamina, so you'll carry it out in the end.Might as well give it all we've got.
First update of the day will be shortly, stuff came up irl so I might take a break for a couple hours in the middle. For the same reason and because my sleep schedule is slightly fucked I might do a few updates really late if anyone is up then.
Since this is a test of stamina you're going to hold onto the end. Your stamina is your strong point, so you're not going to lose here! You grab the metal and begin purifying it as thoroughly as before, nearly recreating the first brick your forged here step by step with some minor differences due to the change in metal.You sweat beads down your body as you forge in the hot, stuffy room. Eventually you finish the first brick and while you're tired, you can still keep going. After your break you go onto the second brick, and try to make in quality equal to the first. You mostly succeed, and although it drives you to the brink of exhaustion, you're done with two. After that there's the third brick, which has clearly become shoddier. Not on the outside, but on the inside- you can't afford to purify and temper the ore as much with the little energy you have. By this point you're sluggish, but you manage to get some energy back over your break.You stumble into the shack, ready to forge your fourth brick, and clumsily pick up the hammer. You begin moving through the steps automatically, not really processing what you're doing, as if you're some sort of golem. Your conscious mind is too tired to do things, so your unconscious takes over. Eventually, without really processing what happened, a lumpy brick full of impurities appears in front of you. You try to exit the shack for your break at this point, but your legs aren't really moving. You try to take a step forward, but instead it results in your slowly falling towards the ground. You guess you used up all your energy.As you're falling towards the ground, you suddenly feel something and realize you're slung over Refiner Long's shoulder. "Good job. I did mention a 'delicacy' test, but given the rest of the data I collected I have a good idea of how you'd do. You'll rest for two days, and then I'll give you some pointers and tips on what you need to improve the day after. You won't get help too often since you're not my direct disciple, but I'll try to help you once or twice a week.Refiner Long doesn't say anything after that, and you close your eyes. The next time you open them you're in bed, and it's evening. Your body is still sore, but you can move. You...>continue reading, there's not much else to do like this.>head to the battle arena to watch a match, maybe that 'champion' from before is still there.>meet up with Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin and see if they want to hang out again tonight, you can't practice in this condition.>Other
>>3721528>>meet up with Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin and see if they want to hang out again tonight, you can't practice in this condition.We will share our pain.
You'll go and hang out with Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin. At least one of them should be free now, and you'll be able to share in your suffering with them. You go to Cai Fang's room, but he's not there so you look for Kinzoku Qin. Luckily he's still present, and he's currently poring through a few books."Senior Apprentice Brother Kinzoku." He turns to face you, closing the book he's reading. "Hey. Are you done getting, er... 'tested'?" You nod. Kinzoku laughs and gets up. "Good, good, it was probably a pain, right? Master Long's training methods can be... intense at times. You'll get used to it." The two of you chat for a bit, and eventually decide to grab a meal since neither of you are particularly busy. Apparently Kinzoku Qin already spent quite a while forging today, so he's not eager to do more.The two of you sit down at a crowded restaurant near Refiner Long's manor that Kinzoku Qin seems to know well. "I'll order for you, trust me, the duck here is great." You take his word on it, and you listen to his gossip as you chat. He speaks vaguely about what's going on in the city and public matters among the Five Families. There's also some complaining about Refiner Long's training, but it's all in good faith. As you speak you try to get more info about...>the best juniors of the Five Families, you'll probably be competing with them in under a year.>anything going on in Border City, you will be here for a while.>news on a greater scale, maybe the nearby countries have had something interesting going on.>Other
>>3722096>>anything going on in Border City, you will be here for a while.
>>3722096>>the best juniors of the Five Families, you'll probably be competing with them in under a year.>>anything going on in Border City, you will be here for a while.Actually both if possible. We plan on cultivating and forging here for a while but we will have to return home and develop a bit around our home.
You'll split your attention between pursuing information Border City's happenings and hearing more about juniors in the Five Families. You'll be competing with them at the Yutian Martial Conference, so it's worth trying to get information about them while you're talking with Kinzoku Qin.The first thing you do is catch up with the person who was fighting above their cultivation at the battle arena before. Apparently he's still at Late Bone and Marrow Tempering, and he's still fighting. He's managed to beat several Late Blood and Viscera Tempering cultivators since then, although he has also lost a few fights against stronger ones. He's not considered untouchable, but he's the main attraction of the arena and it's rumored that he's going to be recruited into a major family soon as one of their top talents.Besides that Kinzoku Qin mostly tells you about minor events and goods being brought to Border City, so you steer the conversation towards the Five Families. Apparently this generation is "one of talents" according to Kinzoku Qin, and there are two that stand out even among them. They're Hi Tai from and Chi Jia, who are only a bit more than a year older than you. Despite this, they've already managed to reach Meridian Opening, shocking everyone. This year they weren't able to compete at the Yutian Martial Conference because they were busy preparing for their breakthroughs, so next year's competition will be their first time fighting in a long time, and it will help determine who the top talent of this generation is.Besides those two there are a handful of other outstanding talents, but none of them are able to compare with Hi Tai and Chi Jia. These are scattered among the families pretty evenly, besides the Ki family which is lacking outstanding talents in their younger. They do have some great talents in Dantian Creation or Acupoint Opening, but their time in the spotlight has already faded- they need to reach at least Half-Step Soul Foundation or they'll end up fading away and taking positions as normal elders in the family. The two of you finish your meal soon, and you return to the manor. A couple of days of rest and reading pass before you meet with Refiner Long again. You meet him a workshop where sketches and unfinished products are scattered around, materials used for refining littering the area. "Your strength and stamina more than meet the mark, and the speed of your hammer work is fine. I brought you here today because I think you need to work on your practical skill and the delicacy of your movements. I do have one question though- what do you want to specialize in?"
Your specialty? Well, you've thought about it a bit. You tell him that you...>don't want to take one, you'll be an all-rounded refiner who can make anything well.>that you want to specialize in forging long weapons like polearms. You use a guandao, so it makes sense.>that you want to specialize in making bows and other wooden items. You don't have a ton of experience with working wood, but it falls under a refiner's profession. There are also metal bows, so you could create those too.>that you want to specialize in forging heavy armor. You'd like to create something that can protect people.>that you want to specialize in creating light armor. Heavy armor is too difficult to move around in and you don't like it.>that you want to specialize in forging tools. Battle is great, but you don't want everything you make to be related to war.>Other
>>3722521>>don't want to take one, you'll be an all-rounded refiner who can make anything well.
>>3722521>>don't want to take one, you'll be an all-rounded refiner who can make anything well.Seems like an interesting quest where are hi tai and chi from?
>>3722765Hi Tai and Chi Jia are from the Hi and Chi families, two of the Five Families of Yutian Country, where you live. The Hi family is in the east, while the Chi family is in the south. I'll start writing in a few minutes.
"I don't want to adopt a specialty. I'd prefer to be able to forge anything equally." Refiner Long nods and then begins pacing around. "That means you'll just have to practice everything based on frequency. There are various movements while smithing, and practicing and optimizing them is a important part of becoming a better refiner. The same applies to knowledge, and gathering materials, and so on and so forth. Anyways, I'll be moving onto the movements and how to transition between them first. I'll lecture you on when you're using the wrong ones later."Refiner Long takes out a hammer that's so heavy it was leaving an indent on the floor, and then turns towards you. "I'll demonstrate this movement five times. After that I want you to do it 5000 times. I'll be back in 45 minutes to show you the next one- that should give you enough time to do it and rest your hands." Refiner Long then... swings his hammer rather mundanely. "Four more times. Remember the form so that you can perform it correctly." You focus, trying to gather upon the subtleties of the swing, but you don't make much progress within five times.After viewing you try to imitate, and Refiner Long decides not to leave as he said he would, and instead begins criticizing you. "Your wrist! You need to use your wrist there. You're not twisting it enough to add force into the swing. Yes, more like that, that's better. Now your pinkey is off, move it down. Alright, and your grip..." This continues for 5000 swings. By the end he seems more satisfied, and you've gotten a deeper understanding of the form behind what he was doing. Five minutes later, Refiner Long picks his hammer back up and smiles. "Onto the next movement!"That night you return to your room, your body exhausted. Your stamina is ridiculous, and since Refiner Long knows that, your training is even harsher than what Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin get. He stayed longer than he said he would, deciding to help you continue training movements and the transitions between them. He told you he'd meet you again in three days and see how you were applying them during smithing and whether you were still performing them properly. You fall asleep clothed, and in the morning...>go to the forge and make some weapons or armor, you need to get practical practice.>go to the arena, you want to use your muscles to do something other than swing a hammer for once.>finish the books you were reading.>get some books on making weapons or armor, maybe they'll be useful for reference.>Other
>>3722944>>finish the books you were reading
>>3722954Yeah makes sense to finish what we start.
For the time being, you may as well finish what you've started. Anvils and mines aren't the most important things in the world, but they do matter. A skilled refiner needs to have know about every part of the subject. You spend most of the day finishing the books, and you learn more than you expected. Apparently there are mines where only cultivators are employed, and they have special safety equipment. You've never heard of one before, the whatever they're mining for must be valuable if cultivators are willing to dig for it. Besides that you learn about the general types of anvils, the ideal metals for certain types of anvils, and the extremely short lived "Anvil Agency", a guild which lasted a mere two years before the refiner who founded it half-jokingly ran out of funds.Well, it's too late to go to the arena now, and you're a bit tired of reading. You guess you'll forge some stuff tonight and then continue through tomorrow until you're trained by Refiner Long again. You head to a shack full of materials for refining, and begin sorting through the ones you're allowed to use. There's plenty here, so that's not a restriction on what you're going to make. After some consideration you decide to make...>some basic polearms, you want to become more adept at them so that you can make your own guandao in the future.>swords, they're the most common weapon and worth becoming more familiar with.>small weapons for sneak attacks, they differ greatly from most other types, but they have a demand.>heavy armor, you like armor that can block the brunt of enemy blows.>light armor, you like armor that lets someone retain movement.>a little bit of everything, you don't care what it is as long as you can make it. You'll become more adept at forging all of these eventually anyways.>Other
>>3723070>>a little bit of everything, you don't care what it is as long as you can make it. You'll become more adept at forging all of these eventually anyways.
>>3723070>>a little bit of everything, you don't care what it is as long as you can make it. You'll become more adept at forging all of these eventually anywaysWe can read some more once we get practice.
You guess you'll make a little bit of everything. That's the only way to get to use these movements in multiple forms and to stop yourself from settling into routine after all. First you make a helmet, which isn't that difficult. You make the design simple, but add a band of metal around helmet's bottom where you can add some simple carvings. It's not amazing, but it isn't completely generic. After that you make a saber, which you have a bit of experience with. You feel like you messed up balance is odd, but it's certainly usable.This continues throughout the next day and a half, and you notice that you're horrible with anything that involves cloth. Hardened wood is fine, but any sort of light armor that involves cloth is a massive pain. You're closer to a blacksmith than a tailor, and you're not alone in this among refiners. Still, you're probably more accomplished with sewing than your average person, you just aren't great at it. You'll catch on eventually. You make a couple of bows and while you don't understand the mechanics behind them, you can properly string the bow and carve the wood. It should only take some research to make a decent one.The next time Refiner Long trains you, he has you forge a sword for him. Afterwords he spends 20 minutes telling you where you messed up and how you could have forged the sword better. This repeats for many hours, ultimately going on until your arms hurt and your body aches. Still, you're making a lot of progress. You're excited to see where you are in a couple of months. Several weeks pass, and you spent them...>locked up in the forge, getting as much practical experience as you can.>poring through books and first-hand experiences by other blacksmiths in between training sessions from Refiner Long and short breaks to test your realizations.>training, reading, and occasionally hanging out with Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin. The three of you are getting along a bit better, and you're not terrible at mahjong anymore.>OtherLast update for the night, thanks for voting
>>3723250>locked up in the forge, getting as much practical experience as you can.We should find our own path or we won't make any progress.
>>3723250>>training, reading, and occasionally hanging out with Cai Fang and Kinzoku Qin. The three of you are getting along a bit better, and you're not terrible at mahjong anymore.
>>3723267This.Long still comes in and corrects us when he can several times a week right?
You wipe the sweat off your brow as you look over the sword you just made. It's... passable you suppose. After a few glances you throw it into the pile of other things you've made and sit down. You sigh as you sit down. "Every time I go to temper it I mess up slightly. I didn't notice it before, but now it's infuriating... and I still need to change the weight. Fuck, this is difficult." You've made a lot of items in the past few weeks, and with it came a lot of progress. And a lot of frustrated annoyance, as with the help of Refiner Long you've come to notice many, many flaws in your creations.You hear the door to the room open and glance at it. Kinzoku Qin is standing there, waving. You wave back before lifting your tired body up. "What is it?" "Master Long wants us for something, come with me." You nod and follow Kinzoku Qin into one of the mansion's side rooms, where Refiner Long is sitting on a couch and sipping tea.Refiner Long gestures for you to sit down and then takes a sip of tea before speaking. "I'd like the two of you to do something for me. I happen to know where a rare metal can be mined, and that location is hidden to everyone except me. I happen to need some of this metal for experimentation, and I'm out. I'd like the two of you to go there, retrieve the ore that I already mined, and bring it back. Make sure no one sees you go to the mine's location- I want to keep it secret, or my free ore will be taken out from under me. I would just put forward the funds to create a mine myself, but it's simply too much trouble and I've never been that interested in that sort of business. Anyways, I'm getting off topic. Do the two of you have any questions?" You...>ask why Cai Fang isn't going along with you if the two of you are going.>ask why exactly you have to do this, doesn't he have plenty of servants.>have no questions, this seems like a simple enough chore to take care of.>Other
>>3724632>>ask why exactly you have to do this, doesn't he have plenty of servants.May be a certain training. Curiosity as to why us exactly shouldn't hurt.
>>3724632>>ask why exactly you have to do this, doesn't he have plenty of servants.It isn't full of bats the size of tigers is it?
"Why aren't you sending a servant to take care of this instead?" Curious, you ask Refiner Long your question. He has plenty of servants throughout the mansion, at least one of them should be a cultivator stronger than you or Kinzoku Qin who would be able to carry more. Refiner Long sighs as he replies. "I would have done so before, but I haven't even returned for society for half a year. All the servants I have I've hired since then, and the few faithful people who worked for me in the past have since moved on to their own lives. Since I don't have anyone I can trust extremely well among the servants, it becomes the duty of the two of you. Both of you seem to have powerful forces backing you that have little motivation to sell the location of my mine, and you're my disciples. It's both a matter of trust and motivation."Well, you suppose that makes sense. In that case he either sends the two of you or he has to go himself. "If there aren't any more questions, you can leave whenever you want. Given that no one knows I know where this vein of metal is, you'll be fine as long as no one on the road spots you and follows you." The two of you are dismissed after being given a map with the location of the mine and a sheet of paper describing where the entrance is hidden. You...>propose that you leave immediately, there's no time to waste. There's food in the pantry and you have plenty of gear for travelling.>put off leaving until tomorrow and hang out while planning the route today. It should only be a couple of days either way, but either way you should be prepared.>Other
>>3724852>>put off leaving until tomorrow and hang out while planning the route today. It should only be a couple of days either way, but either way you should be prepared.Get prepped and plan out a route where less are likely to see us. Also decent killing/training along the way.At what cultivation level is kinzoku?
>>3724880Kinzoku Qin is at Late Blood and Viscera Tempering and 3-4 years older than you
The two of you leave the manor and head to a nearby restaurant to begin planning out the route. You're caught between going into the forest immediately and going from there or leaving from the road nearby the mine, but eventually you figure out a better route. You'll take the main road out of Border City, go onto a side road, go onto a side road of that one, and so on and so forth until you're only on a small, barely used trail. From there you can go through a short stretch of forest and into the mine.The two of you purchase some food for travelling that won't perish quickly after figuring out your route and you make sure you have an up to date map in case anything happens. Once that's done you're more or less ready to go, and you spend the rest of the night chatting and playing mahjong and chess. You lose at a modified two-player version of mahjong by a decent margin, and Kinzoku Qin is crushed by you at chess. You aren't an expert, but he's an absolute beginner so it wasn't difficult.The next morning the two of you leave Border City without drawing attention to yourselves and begin moving along the main road. After a couple hours on that you go onto a smaller side road, and after that onto another one with almost no traffic. Most of the day is spent without running into anyone after that point, but just before you're about to camp you notice that there's some smoke in the distance.You take a look at the smoke and realize that it's not just a small wisp you'd see coming from a campfire- there's a lot of it. There's either a large camp with many fires going, or a forest fire. You...>go the nearest tribe and warn them about it, if it's a forest fire they're in some danger.>ignore it and continue moving forward, if you camp away far enough whatever it is won't be an issue.>go to investigate it, if you close in you'll be able to easily see what it is.>Other
>>3725073>>go to investigate it, if you close in you'll be able to easily see what it is.
>>3725073>>>go to investigate it, if you close in you'll be able to easily see what it is.
You want to investigate this before you get involved. For all you know it could just be a bunch of hunters camping and you'll panic a tribe for nothing if you say it's a fire. You mention the smoke to Kinzoku Qin, and he agrees to come along and investigate it with you. The two of you make your way through the trees towards it, as you do you begin to men loudly talking and the smell meat cooking. You suppose this is a camp then? You climb into the trees and draw nearer to get a look at it, and are deeply surprised.The camp is huge, and probably contains at least 1000 people. They're gathered around campfires or inside tents, eating and drinking. You can sense the cultivation of the ones nearest to you, and every single one of them is a cultivator. Most of them don't have a high cultivation, but that's still surprising. You can also sense two Meridian Opening cultivators from where you are- there could be one or two dozen in the camp if they're spread evenly across it.You stay where you are for a minute, observing the people. It seems like they're camping for the day, and chatting. Most of them are men, and quite a few of the people have scars. This is also normal for cultivators. Besides the fact that they're all cultivators and that there are so many powerful people here, you don't see much out of the ordinary. You do notice that the camp is centered around one oversized tent, so that's probably where whoever is in charge is staying.Eventually you decide to...>leave, now that you know there isn't a forest fire you need to get involved.>tell the nearest village about the group, it could be hunters or something, but either way you may as well inform them.>enter the camp, whoever they are they shouldn't be hostile. They seem pleasant enough.>Other
>>3725260>>tell the nearest village about the group, it could be hunters or something, but either way you may as well inform them.Nope not our problem
>>3725260>>>tell the nearest village about the group, it could be hunters or something, but either way you may as well inform them.
Whatever it is, you're not getting involved too deeply. This could be some hunters, or it could be a small army. You'll just tell the nearest village and then leave. You slowly move away from the camp, hoping that no one notices you, and then once you're far away you run. You tell Kinzoku Qin about what you saw, and he agrees about the decision to just tell the nearest tribe and leave it to them.The two of you move a couple of hours off of your intended route and your intended camping spot, and move towards a tribe of around ten or twenty thousand people living nearby. Once you enter you ask a few people living there where the tribe's leader is. Once you find out you make a beeline for the building they live in, and manage to get an audience due to the level of your cultivation and the promise of 'important news'.The two of you enter a two-story building flanked by two tribesman at Early Meridian Opening. They're likely two of the strongest cultivators in the tribe. You're led past what looks like a tea room and to the second floor, where an old man at Late Bone and Marrow Tempering is sitting at a desk, sorting through papers. Upon your entry he nods at the guards, and turns to face you. "I heard you had news?"You fill in the old man on what you saw in the forest, and his face grows solemn as you go on. After you finish there's a short pause before he responds. "Thank you for your help. I'll keep this in mind and increase the patrol tonight in case any of them get drunk and decide to start trouble." You feel like there's something more than what you're being told, but either way you're sent out afterwards and left to your own devices. Due to your detour it's already dark, and you're a ways away from where you were going to camp. You...>find a room here, it's better than camping on the road anyways.>walk for an hour or so and find a decent place to rest, that way you won't be noticed if anything happens.>Other
>>3725466>>walk for an hour or so and find a decent place to rest, that way you won't be noticed if anything happens.
>>3725466>>walk for an hour or so and find a decent place to rest, that way you won't be noticed if anything happens.Let's not be here when they raid this shit..
You don't want to be here in case anything happens, so you suggest that the two of you distance yourselves from the town and then camp somewhere else. Kinzoku Qin agrees, and the two of you hike through the dark woods for almost an hour before you find a decent place to sleep. You eat some food you packed and chat for about half an hour before taking your bedrolls out and going to sleep for the night.In the middle of the night, you're woken up by Kinzoku Qin. He points in the distance, where you can see massive amounts of smoke and flames. It looks to be from where that tribe was. The two of you immediately pack your things up and move even further away from it, not wanting to get involved in the tribe's misfortune. You go back to sleep later, and luckily no one stumbles across the two of you.On the morning of the third day since you've left, you reach where the mine should be. It takes you a while to find the entrance, but eventually the two of you manage to find it- it's a small, wooden door in the ground obscured by several bushes. It would be nearly impossible to stumble across this if you weren't looking for it. As that thought comes to mind, you notice that there are footprints in a puddle of mud only five feet away. They look recent.The two of you look around for other signs of people, and after a short search find a small pile of wood hidden in a set of bushes outside. You're not sure whether Refiner Long left it here or if there's someone else living nearby. This is slightly concerning- if there's someone nearby, what if they're inside the mine? If they're a cultivator at Meridian Opening or higher, then it will difficult to escape them in a mind like that with one tiny entrance. You...>want to stake out the mine for a while and see if anyone enters or exits it. You're not getting trapped in there with anyone stronger than you.>want to enter the mine, even if someone lives nearby it's doubtful they found it. It's probably just someone living out in the wilderness.>OtherLast update for the night, thanks for voting.
>>3725539>>want to stake out the mine for a while and see if anyone enters or exits it. You're not getting trapped in there with anyone stronger than you.
>>3725539>want to stake out the mine for a while and see if anyone enters or exits it. You're not getting trapped in there with anyone stronger than you.
Man we aren't gonna have to murder a dude are we? Secret spot my ass.
Yeah, we could hold our own against someone at the blood and viscera stage. Meridian opening not likely. But kin is someone from the 5 families and at late blood and viscera stage. Chances are may just be a miner and even if he is at meridian opening he likely couldn't do combated nearly as well. But safety first.
Updating in half an hour
You need to keep watch here first. If there's someone living in or near here, then it's dangerous to enter the mine without confirming it. There's only one narrow exit, and you're not getting trapped in there with someone else.Kinzoku Qin agrees with you, and the two of you take up a position about 50 feet away in a few trees. You stay there for three hours without seeing much, but eventually you see a small figure in the distance. You take a closer look, and see that it's a thin old man walking towards you. He's probably at least 70, and he's missing a leg- instead he just has some crude peg leg to help him walk around. As he slowly makes his way towards you, you see that he's carrying a water skin.The old man walks closer and closer to the two of you, before eventually reaching the bush where the mine's entrance is. He fumbles with the water skin for a moment before managing to kick the door open with his good foot and then disappears beneath the bush.Well, it looks like there is someone living here, but he's not a cultivator. It's doubtful that he's here for any reason besides keeping hidden or staying warm. You could go in and just ignore him, although there is the risk of him finding out what the mine is for. Still, you don't really want to kill him for no reason. You suggest that the two of you...>wait for him to leave and then head into the mine to grab some metal. He won't know that anyone cares about what's inside, and he can still live here.>enter the mine now and get the metal, you don't need to mind the old man.>get rid of the old man, it's not something you want to do, but given that this is supposed to mine with metal that Refiner Long considers rare, if the location was leaked it would be terrible.>Other
>>3726418>>wait for him to leave and then head into the mine to grab some metal. He won't know that anyone cares about what's inside, and he can still live here.Lets also ask when Kinzoku think. That way its a decision we both made And long can't be mad at just us.
>>3726418>>wait for him to leave and then head into the mine to grab some metal. He won't know that anyone cares about what's inside, and he can still live here.
You don't want to kill this cripple. It's best to just wait until he leaves and then go in, take the ore you need, and leave. First you decide to ask Kinzoku Qin what he thinks, and he just notes that he doesn't really want to kill someone like this. Luckily since you agree, it won't be hard to put your plan into action.The two of you find a position closer to the mine, figuring that if you're close to being revealed it still won't be hard to move away and hide yourself. You're cultivators after all, while the old man isn't in good shape even for a mortal. The two of you patiently wait outside the mine for several hours until you hear something. You see the old man exit the bush, wipe a few leaves off of him, and then begin walking away towards where you saw the pile of wood. The two of you dash into the bush once he's a decent distance away and enter the mine through the door hidden there.You go down a short ladder before finding yourselves in the old man's home. There's an old cot, a mine cart full of water, and a what looks like a bunch of nuts and berries gathered from nearby. You also see some books and a magnifying glass sitting on a crudely made table. The way out of the room is simply a mine shaft leading downwards, so you follow it.The two of you follow the mine shaft for several minutes until you reach the end. A massive pile of reddish-green ore is stacked on top of each other there, more than the two of you could possibly carry. This must be what Refiner Long wanted you to get for him. You begin taking some and...>fill your pack lightly. You don't want to be burdened during the trip.>get as much ore as you can feasibly carry with you, the more you get the longer until someone has to come back here.>take more than you can reasonably carry, it will take a bit longer to get back but you'll have a lot.>Other
>>3726567>>get as much ore as you can feasibly carry with you, the more you get the longer until someone has to come back here.Does long not have a dimension ring?
>>3726583You've seen him wear a ring, but you don't think it was an interdimensional ring. He could probably afford one if he really wanted to, but it would likely be a massive portion of his savings.
>>3726567>>fill your pack lightly. You don't want to be burdened during the trip.>>get as much ore as you can feasibly carry with you, the more you get the longer until someone has to come back here.Could we do some where inbetween?
>>3726592Also have we asked/do we know what his specialty is?>>3726592Do we have a rough idea of how much one would cost? I am guessing we would have to find an extraornarily large city to purchase one?
You'll load as much ore as you can feasibly carry, given that someone is living here it will be a pain to come back. You'll be slightly burdened, but it won't slow you down too much. You begin stuffing you pack with ore along with Kinzoku Qin, and once your packs are you begin sneaking towards the entrance. Once you do you notice that the old man is back, and the two of you sit down, planning on waiting him out.During the hour it takes for the old man to leave again, he plays the flute. It seems to be some sort of song traditional to the region, but you don't recognize it. Eventually he puts the crudely carved flute underneath the pillow on the cot and moves towards the ladder, leaving to do something.A few minutes after the old man leaves the two of you leave, and once you're up the ladder you dash away as quickly as possible. You don't run into anyone after leaving, and manage to get back onto the main road and then to Border City within a couple of days. You notice that there are a lot of armed groups of people moving along the roads. Many of them have wristbands with insignias of various tribes you don't recognize, and occasionally with insignias representing Border City or the Ki family.Once you arrive back in Border City you give the packs full of ore to Refiner Long and he nods appreciatively. "Thanks for taking care of this errand. I'll give both of you enough to make a weapon once I've refined this into metal. It will take you a long time to actually be able to use this though." You tell Refiner Long about the old man, and he's obviously annoyed that someone found his secret, but just tells you to not worry about it. If it's just a crippled old man he likely won't realize the value of the place he's living. Either way he'll deal with it when he has time to go to the mine.A few days after your return there's two announcements. The first is an announcement from the lord of Border City, who is forming an army to drive away a group of raiders from The Deserts to the north. Apparently they're several thousand strong, and they dared to raze and pillage entire tribes. The second is an announcement from the city's arena. The 'champion' at Late Bone and Marrow Forging who had been defeating countless opponents above his cultivation would stop fighting and join the Ki family in a week. All people who wanted to challenge him had until then to do so. In response to this you...>ignore it and focused on your forging, you have better things to do than wait for a spot in the arena. You'll have a chance to fight during the Yutian Martial Conference.>try to get a chance to fight him, you're curious about fighting someone below your cultivation that's supposed to be able to rival you. You rely on your overwhelming strength, stamina, and defense to do so, but what are they doing to fight against people with a higher cultivation than them?>Other
>>3726607You don't know if he has a specialization, but you have noticed that his work tends to have a lot of complicated designs on them.As for an interdimensional ring, you do have a rough idea. It'd probably be at least 300,000 gold, or possibly 400,000 to 500,000 gold. They're rare within Yutian country, but the capital would definitely have a place that sells them. If you were somewhere else you'd probably have to buy someone else's or hire someone to go to the capital and purchase it for you.
>>3726653>>ignore it and focused on your forging, you have better things to do than wait for a spot in the arena. You'll have a chance to fight during the Yutian Martial Conference.Could we do an experiment with our blood to see if its changed drastically? We've speed up the speed of growth and what not?Has the bud seen any changes in the last couple of weeks?>>3726659got it we should try and save for that soon.
>>3726716You've been growing herbs with it, you don't need to experiment. It's slightly more effective and you're making around 30,000 gold coins every two months off of it instead of roughly 20,000 every two months.and no, but the bud has not diedgiven that they're supposed to take hundreds of years to grow, you doubt you'll see any change in it unless your cultivation rises greatly or several years pass
>>3726653>>ignore it and focused on your forging, you have better things to do than wait for a spot in the arena. You'll have a chance to fight during the Yutian Martial Conference.Wouldn't have hurt to fight.But we may as well just keep training and forging. We cant be to far from medium blood and viscera.
While you're slightly interested in fighting them, you need to focus on improving your refining skills while you're here. A few days after your return you're given a unbearably heavy red-green ingots of metal by Refiner Long. It looks like this is what the ore is refined into. You put them into your pack and hope that Zhu Chao can carry them without trouble.The days pass slowly, and eventually a couple weeks after your return from the mine, something happens while you're sleeping. Outside Refiner Long's Manor...Duan Yun, Duan Jin's father, hides on top of a nearby house and stares at a mansion as guards wander around. "This should be the place. I didn't think I'd be lucky enough to have this chance, but luckily my persistence paid off and I came across that other assassin." He takes a deep breath and blinks. "This could be the last night of my life, but if I constrain my strength when killing him then I should be able to escape. That refiner is stronger than me, but I'm powerful in my own right. You can't take down an elder from Horned Island that easily."Duan Yun stands up and stretches before preparing to jump off the roof and into Refiner Long's property. "It ends today. Zuo Shi, Liu Zhu, whatever your name is- I shall not let a traitor to Horned Island live. My son will regain his position, and your schemes will be brought to light." Duan Yun jumps off the roof, appearing on the Refiner Long's property and promptly knocking out a guard. He enters the house, searching for Liu Zhu...
You're awoken by your slumber by a loud noise and pain. You try to get your bearings, and see Duan Yun standing above you, a look that's a mix of bloodlust and frustration in his eyes. You take a look at yourself, and only realize that you're flying backwards rapidly when you slam into a wall, flying through and into the next one, and then the next one. Eventually you stop with a gaping wound in your upper chest and splinters covering your body. Your heart isn't injured, but it hurts to breathe. You wonder if your lungs are injured.Before you can do anything you see Duan Yun dash towards you, gnashing his teeth and punching towards you. "Today's the day you die you demonspawn!" You try to get away, but your body can't move. As you desperately try to think of a way out of this, you feel a gust of wind blow past you, and you're lightly thrown back onto a bed as Refiner Long appears in your vision. "I may just be a humble refiner, but that doesn't mean I'm letting an idiot like you mess with me!"Refiner Long pulls out a sword which clashes with Refiner Long's fist, sending him flying back and causing blood to shoot from his hand. The aftershocks of the blow buffet you, blowing you further backwards and throwing you off the bed you landed on.You lie there as Refiner Long and Duan Yun prepare to exchange another set of blows. You can faintly here the noise of others approaching. You...>try to speak as loudly as you can for anyone else to run away, you don't want anyone else to get caught up in this.>pull out a sound-transmission talisman and inform Zhu Chao of what's happening.>pull out a sound-transmission talisman and tell Feng Jun to get Duan Tao and capture Duan Jin and anyone working with him. If his father has shown up here, then he might be preparing something on his end.>try to crawl away as quickly as you can, you don't want to be caught up in this battle when you're already heavily wounded.>Other
>>3726785>>try to speak as loudly as you can for anyone else to run away, you don't want anyone else to get caught up in this.>>pull out a sound-transmission talisman and inform Zhu Chao of what's happening.>>pull out a sound-transmission talisman and tell Feng Jun to get Duan Tao and capture Duan Jin and anyone working with him. If his father has shown up here, then he might be preparing something on his end.In that order.
>>3726794Sounds good to me. We've also got the necklace. That may help for a bit.
>>3726794sounds good.>>3726811>>3726794Just understand that Zhu Chao will be absolutely useless as he is still in a green city. And it takes about a week for him to get here. possibly less if he rushes more. But he won't be arriving with in the next 2-3 days.so >>try to speak as loudly as you can for anyone else to run away, you don't want anyone else to get caught up in this.>>pull out a sound-transmission talisman and tell Feng Jun to get Duan Tao and capture Duan Jin and anyone working with him. If his father has shown up here, then he might be preparing something on his end.And once the ordeal is done we could let Chao know once we get through our forging boot camp so he doesn't rush us off.
Fuck. You need to get people away from here first. You try to speak, and you feel a deep pain in your upper torso as you cough up blood. After a moment you manage to speak, but it's only at the level of someone speaking normally. "G...Get away from here! Long is fighting another Acupoint Opening... cult-..cultivator." You cough up a bit more blood as you say this, and brace yourself as the aftershocks of their blows once again send you flying backwards.You lightly hit the wall and then fall against the ground as Refiner Long and Duan Yun continue to exchange blows. At this point you see a servant enter the room, and Refiner Long yells something you can't make out, but keeps his focus on the battle. The servant dashes towards you faster than you could possibly move, and you're suddenly slung over his shoulder and taken out of the room. You hear yelling as you leave, and feel blood splash onto your leg. For all you know it could be Refiner Long's, Duan Yun's, or your own.Your consciousness is fading, but you still take the chance to grab a long-distance sound transmission talisman. You touch it and begin whispering into it as it's activated. "Du... Duan Yun tried to kill me. Ca..cap..ture Duan Jin." You break out into a painful coughing fit after this, and aren't able to say anything else. Once you're done your consciousness begins to fade and you pass out in a mixture of pain and confusion.You come to with a feeling of pain covering your body, and distinctly your upper chest. You try to look around, but you can barely move so you just give up. After lying there for some time you hear something, and then Refiner Long enters your vision. His face is stained with blood, and he has several cuts. "Many of your ribs are broken, and your lung is punctured. You're a mess right now. Still, you're alive."You're alive. Well, you knew that, but it's good to hear someone else say it. "That old bastard kept swearing at you even as you were carried away. Luckily that gave me an opening and I was able to land a major blow on him. He's tied up downstairs and missing a couple of limbs right now. Kept complaining about 'that damn necklace' stopping his blow because he held back, but fuck if I know what he meant." ...The necklace? That's it then. He must have been holding back so he wasn't discovered, but most of the blow was taken by the necklace. Whatever was left must have been what nearly killed you.You fall asleep after hearing this, and the next time you're awake for longer than it takes to be fed is a couple days later. You can barely move, although you can't really walk. Breathing still hurts, but it doesn't seem like anything is going to be a permanent injury. Apparently Duan Yun is crippled and held captive in the basement, and Refiner Long still hasn't decided what to do with him. He hasn't bothered asking you why someone tried to kill you, simply stating that 'no one is dying under his roof'.
Five days after the incident, you're still injured but able to move around without trouble. At this point you have the opportunity to talk to Duan Yun if you wish, who has spent the last five days starved and crippled in a dungeon. You...>ignore him and continue to rest, whatever he says won't matter.>go to kill him yourself, if he tried to kill you he won't get off easy.>taunt him a bit, you could use something to cheer you up.>see if you can get some information out of him, you're not a torturer, but maybe he's ready to crack.>Other
>>3726958>>see if you can get some information out of him, you're not a torturer, but maybe he's
>>3726958>>see if you can get some information out of him, you're not a torturer, but maybe he's ready to crack.lets see what we can get out of him. On a side note how much money do we have now? what with it being a while now and the +80k we received.
You guess you'll go and visit Duan Yun and try to get some information out of him. You're shown downstairs and to Duan Yun, who is currently missing both of his arms and wrapped in chains. Massive sword scars run throughout most of his body, and it doesn't seem like he has the energy to do anything.Upon your entrance Duan Yun glances at you, and his eyes seem to light up. He shakes, trying to escape from the chains, but it's no use. Still, he does angrily swear at you, his face contorting in anger and madness. "Zuo Shi! I'll kill you! You bastard traitor, you won't escape this alive! I-I will kill you and save Horned Island! You'll die... die! DIE! DIE!" He cackles as he says this, bobbing back and forth."Where is your son?" You ask him this, and Duan Yun stares at you like you're an idiot. "He's the Highblod! He's ruling Horned Island right now, and you're dying! Dying! Dying! AHAHAHA!" You... you're not sure if Duan Yun is the right mind anymore. As he says this he continues to shake back and forth, eventually tipping over and continuing to laugh while rolling around on a small area of ground, chained to a stone pillar behind him.You try to ask him many questions, but all you get are his ramblings and delusions. According to him you and all the other 'traitors' will die, and Duan Jin will bring Horned Island into a new age. You...>continue trying to get information out of him, whether you have to use force or not.>leave, you're not going to get anything out of this babbling madman.>Other>>3726980160,000 gold coins after you sell the herbs you grew here
>>3727057>>continue trying to get information out of him, whether you have to use force or not.
>>3727057>>continue trying to get information out of him, whether you have to use force or
>>3727057Duan Yunseems like he made a deal of sorts. thankfully we kept our identity private for the most part. There also seems to be an assassin. We should let Chao know with someone trying to murder us and the assasin running around. What happened and any details pertaining to the horned clan.
>>3727057>continue trying to get information out of him, whether you have to use force or not.
You want to know how Duan Yun figured out where you are. Dammit. How exactly do you torture someone like this anyways- an Acupoint Opening cultivator is too powerful for you to punch or kick into submission.As you think about this, you glance at the stumps left where his arms were and have an idea. You go upstairs, get a poker made of a good metal, and heat it as hot as you can. Once it's almost melting you go downstairs, wielding it. "Duan Yun, this is the last time I'm going to ask. How did you know I was here?"Duan Yun stares at you, eyes blankly staring ahead, and laughs. "Dead... dead... he's dead... Zuo Shi is dead... he's dead... Zuo Shi, Zuo Shi, he's dead...." Frustrated, you jab at where his arm was cut off with your poker, and he begins screaming as he talks. "DEAD! DEAD! AHHHHHHHHHHHH!" You continue this for several minutes, but don't seem to be making much progress until you hear something interesting in his rants. "He's dead! Horned Island belongs to the Duan family, not the Liu family.... Zuo Shi dead, dead, DEAD, AHAHAHA!"...The Liu family? How does he knows about your family? Finally finding something worth pursuing you try to find out more, but you can't get anything out of him besides "he told me" in between his ranting. Eventually you give up and leave Duan Yun to his own devices downstairs. It seems his and his son's fall from power and his failure here has broken him, so it's going to be difficult to get anything out of him.A few hours after interrogating Duan Yun, Zhu Chao arrives. Apparently Feng Jun left Horned Island and informed him of what happened here after he reached Green City. Zhu Chao suggests that you return to the Liu family immediately after you heal, and hands you a new long-distance sound transmission talisman which connects to Feng Jun, replacing the one you used up. You...>have no problems with this, you've spent quite the long time in the Northern Wastes.>have something to take care of here, you can't leave just yet. (State what)>OtherI got got the last name for your alias wrong for a couple of posts, my bad. Pastebin says it's Zuo, not Zhu.
>>3727181>>have no problems with this, you've spent quite a long time in the Northern Wastes.time to go home and show our brother up.
>>3727181>>have no problems with this, you've spent quite the long time in the Northern Wastes
You've spent quite a long time in the Northern Wastes and you're pretty much done here. You have no problems returning with Zhu Chao once you're healed. You tell Zhu Chao this, and he justs nods. "I'll be speaking to our friend downstairs then. It might be a little loud." Zhu Chao leaves, and few minutes later you can faintly hear screaming from downstairs. You're surprised that you can hear it since the walls of the basement are made of stone, but hopefully he gets some information out of it.A few days later you're mostly healed, and Zhu Chao has finished his, er, 'discussions' with Duan Yun. He managed to figure out that the person who told him your real name and where you were was another assassin who had just arrived in Green City and who was looking for you. It was probably from the other force that was trying to kill you, which means they got some sort of hint that you were in the Northern Wastes near the end of your trip. Maybe it was Zhu Chao travelling to Green City?The info is helpful, but it still doesn't reveal who the first person after you is, which is a shame. Still, it clears up some things. You get a letter from Feng Jun before you leave Border City, and according to him Duan Jin and his forces fled Green CIty the same night. They were planning to return if Duan Yun succeeded, but they're probably just running as far as they can now that they haven't heard anything from him. News of your assassination attempt hasn't been spread throughout Horned Island, and only a few of the highest elders know about what happened for the time being.Now that you're mostly healed you wish Cai Fang, Kinzoku Qin, and Refiner Long goodbye and begin your trek journey to the Liu family estate. With your improved strength and experiences here you're bound to make a splash, and you're excited to return home and help secure your place as the second patriarch.
That's the last update for this thread, thanks for voting and feel free to discuss/ask me things/shitpost below. The next thread will be in 1-3 days depending on brainstorming, and it will probably be shorter than usual because my gf's birthday is on the 15th and I move back to uni on the 17th. The thread after that one will probably be made after my classes start on the 19th, I'm not sure yet.
>>3727303Alright, thanks for running. Have a good one OP
>>3727303Thanks for running my dude
>>3727303About how far are we from mid level blood and viscera? Since we trained for a month in the trainings grounds before we left, ate the fruit, and have been training for what seems like another month after that once we got to border city. Also I was wondering the most prosperous city in the north wastes is it the city shared by the 4 God beasts tribes jointly?
>>37287651.) You're not sure, probably a couple of months at least. It could be more it could be a bit less.2.) Yes, that's the most prosperous city in the Northern Wastes alongside Border City, although it's technically not in the wastes.
The next thread will probably be tomorrow night, I'll update a couple of times then and host a proper session on the day after.
>>3729982sounds good.if you can give us a time to expect you?
>>3731122In about 15 hours, give or take an hour.
>>3732686>>3732686>>3732686The new thread is up and the character sheet is updated. I'll update 2/3 times today.