Ch104 – Can’t Match Up to a Side Branch
Translated by: DMlations/Zryuu
Edited by: Butter
As long as you don’t endanger someone else’s life during this competition, and your means aren’t too underhanded, the family would generally turn a blind eye to it and laugh it off. After all, they can’t lack some good competition as it would be conducive for the development of the family.
The time had come, and another bell sounded. The test had formally begun.
Second Elder stood up and his gaze slowly swept over the dense, dark mass of people below. He grinned, “I’ll dispense with the formalities. Everyone should know that that today’s test is being conducted to select the pupils who will represent the Lin family in the Hundred Families Gathering. As long as you’re 27 years old and below, and you’re between the Refining Qi Stage fifth layer and Foundation Stage third layer, you are eligible for the test. Okay, the test will now begin.”
The first person to take the test was Lin Zezhi.
Lin Zezhi stood in front of the testing stone that was about 10 zhang high. He stored up all the energy in his body, and all the Qi in his Dantian Qi sea burst forth within an instant as he threw both fists at the testing stone and abruptly sent a shockwave towards it through the air.
This shout shook the heavens and the earth. A tremendous Qi rushed onto the testing stone, and within the blink of an eye, seven red crystal lines spread from the bottom to the top of the testing stone.
The tester’s eyes lit up and announced loudly, “Lin Zezhi, Refining Qi Stage seventh layer cultivator, fire elemental single spiritual root!”
The crowd below all sucked in a breath of cold air as they were incredibly shocked.
“Fire elemental single spiritual root!”
“It’s actually a fire elemental single spiritual root!”
“Lin Zezhi is just a little over 20, yet he’s already a Refining Qi seventh layer cultivator!”
“He’s probably the strongest cultivator of his generation in the Lin family now ba?”
“From the current situation, it does seem that way.”
Many people cast glances filled with envy and admiration at Lin Zezhi. There were even some Lin family pupils — especially female cultivators — who revealed adoring expressions on their faces.
When Lin Zezhi listened to everyone’s unabashed compliments, he became even more spirited, and even more confident in himself.
Third Elder couldn’t help but feel pleased as well. He said, “Zezhi truly deserves to be the one I deem worthy of succeeding the Lin family.”
Second Elder nodded too, “The Lin family should be choosing a Young Master soon.”
Fifth Elder looked at Third Elder, “Let’s keep watching ba.”
The next person to go on stage was a youngster from a side branch. After testing, his level was shown to be Refining Qi Stage fourth layer; just a bit more and he would’ve reached the fifth layer. But after today’s test, they would have to submit the names for the gathering, so there would be no more chances. Thus, he could only hang his head despondently as he walked off the stage.
Next, the third, fourth…….the testing continued.
Yan Tianhen yawned and patted his mouth. The youngster next to him also yawned and patted his mouth — their movements were miraculously synchronised.
The youngster blinked and asked, “You’re not taking part in the test?”
Yan Tianhen shook his head, “I’m not taking part. Didn’t they say that only those with the surname Lin are eligible to take the test ma.”
“You’re not part of the Lin family?” The youngster asked curiously.
Yan Tianhen said, “My name is Yan Tianhen.”
The youngster suddenly uttered an “ah” and said, “Oh, so you’re Yan Tianhen? You’re the kid that the previous head of the Lin family adopted, right?”
Yan Tianhen touched his chin and said happily, “Looks like even though I’m not in the cultivation world, my legend still exists in the cultivation world. I am quite famous in the Lin family ma, even someone like you who have not been to Qing city in so many years knows me.”
“Yeah, you really are too famous.” The youngster revealed an expression filled with sympathy, “I heard that you can’t learn anything, and no matter how many elixirs you consumed, it’ll be as if you’ve eaten them all in vain since it’s not the least bit effective, so it could only be called a waste. But the previous head treated you even better than he did his own son, so everyone guessed that you’re actually the illegitimate son of the previous head.”
Yan Tianhen shook his head solemnly, “I’m not, I’m really not. They’re just spouting nonsense.”
The youngster nodded, and answered solemnly as well, “I believe that you’re not.”
“Really?” Yan Tianhen looked very moved, “There’s finally someone who can keep up a conversation with me. But, how did you get such discerning eyes?”
“Because I’ve seen Lin Zhan before when I was a kid, and I’ve also seen his son Lin Xuanzhi. So I’m certain that he wouldn’t be able to give birth to an illegitimate son as ugly as you.” The youngster blurted out, then thought that he shouldn’t be so impolite so he smiled awkwardly, “What I meant was, you just don’t look like them.”
Yan Tianhen, “…”
Yan Tianhen looked at the youngster and asked, “What’s your name?”
The youngster answered, “My name is Lin Yan.”
Yan Tianhen was stunned, “So you’re Lin Yan.”
Lin Yan was stunned too, “You’ve heard of me before?”
“No.” Yan Tianhen shook his head and looked at him, “But, I know you now. Don’t leave after the test, I want to give you a good beating.”
Lin Yan, “…”
Lin Yan stared at Yan Tianhen with a profound look in his eyes, “I was just stating the truth.”
Yan Tianhen also stared at him with quite a profound look in his eyes, “You don’t know this, but whenever I hear people speak the truth, I’ll want to hit them.”
Lin Yan, “…”
“Next, Lin Yan!” The tester shouted.
Lin Yan jumped onto the stage and stood in front of the testing stone. After he circulated the Qi in his body, he sent it towards the testing stone with all his might.
After a chain of explosion sounds rang out, seven red crystal lines lit up on the testing stone, and the colour was incredibly pure and free of impurities.
The tester was stunned, then shouted, “Lin Yan, Refining Qi Stage seventh layer cultivator, fire elemental single spiritual root!”
Lin yan was the second person after Lin Zezhi to have reached the seventh layer of his Refining Qi stage, and is also the second person to possess a single spiritual root. So he naturally triggered another commotion below the stage, and even Lin Zezhi, who was sitting comfortably in the first place, couldn’t help but look askance at Lin Yan.
Fifth Elder couldn’t help himself from saying, “I didn’t expect to see another pupil in the Lin family with a fire elemental single spiritual root at his Refining Qi Stage’s seventh layer.”
Second Elder asked, “How old is that Lin Yan?”
Fifth Elder looked at the roster in his hands and said happily, “He’s only 15 years old. That kind of cultivation speed might be a little behind the Xuanzhi of the past, but he’s now one of the best in the Lin family!”
Second Elder was very pleased as he touched his beard, “That kid may be from a side branch, but his talent is enough for us to treat him like how we would a pupil from the main branches. After the test, personally send him an invite to ask him to stay in the main mansion, we’ll need to focus on nurturing him.”
“Rest assured, I know what to do.” Fifth Elder said.
Third Elder felt extremely discontented as he listened to them from a side. In order to let Lin Zezhi gain fame overnight in the testing today, he had expended a lot of effort and money in buying a profound-level medicinal pill that could rapidly increase his cultivation level within a short amount of time. This was why Lin Zezhi could finally break through the shackles of his Refining Qi Stage’s sixth layer two days ago and become the cultivator with the highest level amongst the Lin family pupils who were of suitable age today.
But he didn’t expect a Cheng Yaojin to ambush the enemy. This Lin Yan who was unheard of jumped out from some unknown corner and actually stole Lin Zezhi’s limelight!
Reaching the Refining Qi Stage’s seventh layer when he was only 15 years old, and he has a single spiritual root too; plus, it was of the same element as Lin Zezhi’s — fire. After summing up these three qualities, Lin Zezhi would only be mocked as someone who ‘can’t match up to a side branch’ if others were to compare them.
The gaze that Third Elder cast at Lin Yan became much more complex at once.
But Lin Yan knew nothing about any of this, and even looked quite indifferent too. It was as if he didn’t feel like there was much to be proud of when it came to his cultivation level and spiritual root.
Yan Tianhen looked at the youngster who continued wearing his usual expression on stage and sighed heavily.
“What’s wrong, Ah Hen?” Lin Xuanzhi had left for a bit just now. Now that he returned, the first thing he saw was Yan Tianhen sighing and groaning.
Yan Tianhen bit his lower lip a bit unhappily, “Nothing much, but, I think I won’t be able to beat Lin Yan up anymore.”
Lin Xuanzhi, “……”
Lin Xuanzhi did have a slight impression of Lin Yan. That guy came from a distant side branch of the Lin family, and it seemed like he was the only one left in that side branch. But every year, the Lin family’s main branches would provide him with a certain amount of cultivation resources.
In his past life, Lin Yan had also represented the Lin family in the Hundred Families Gathering, and had even obtained impressive results.
Lin Yan jumped off the stage under everyone’s eyes and returned to where he had stood before.
Yan Tianhen rubbed his nose and felt a bit bitter, but he still said sincerely, “I didn’t expect you to be so amazing, congratulations.”
Lin Yan waved his hand and said indifferently, “This isn’t much, I’m still far inferior as compared to your older brother.”
Yan Tianhen paused, then sighed, “It is a valuable trait to know yourself so well, why be so hard on yourself?”
Lin yan smiled and said in a carefree manner, “Everyone likes to be hard on themselves. Aren’t cultivators like us always trying to make things hard for ourselves? Isn’t that how we improve? I am very self-aware, so even though I do treat your older brother as my goal, I never expect to overtake him one day.”
Yan Tianhen felt like Lin Yan glowed with his own unique, sacred light and suddenly looked a lot more different than before.
Lin Xuanzhi smiled slightly and looked at Lin Yan, “You’re already at the seventh layer of your Refining Qi stage even though you’re so young, that’s very amazing.”
Lin Yan immediately responded modestly, “No no, if we’re really going to talk about someone who’s amazing, then it would have to be Xuanzhi Tangge.”
He looked at Yan Tianhen and praised, “Even Tianhen Didi here is a handsome boy too. He’s so accomplished even though he’s so young, and he’s a brilliant genius too.”
Yan Tianhen, “…” That’s obviously not what you said just now!
Lin Xuanzhi thought Lin Yan seemed even more pleasant to the eye now. He likes this kind of intelligent person who has good judgment.
Yan Tianhen bit his finger, “Aren’t those praises of yours too exaggerated?”
Lin Yan blinked and said with a face full of surprise, “It’s not exaggerated at all though? You’re only 12 or 13 years old and yet you’re already a Refining Qi Stage wuwu….”
Yan Tianhen’s heart leapt as he rushed over to cover Lin Yan’s mouth so that he wouldn’t continue with the rest of his sentence.
Lin Xuanzhi raised his eyebrow and looked at Yan Tianhen in silence.
Yan Tianhen desperately made eyes at Lin Yan, then awkwardly smiled at Lin Xuanzhi, “Dage, I saw a fly flying around his mouth just now, so I wanted to swat it into his mouth.”
Lin Xuanzhi, “…”
Lin Xuanzhi looked at Yan Tianhen with a furtive gaze as he scrutinised him, “Ah Hen, what level is your cultivation at now?”
Even though he could tell that Yan Tianhen’s cultivation had greatly improved compared to before, but it was only at the Refining Qi Stage second layer realm. But if it were so, it definitely wouldn’t have made Lin Yan praise him in such an exaggerated manner just now.
Don’t tell me……Lin Xuanzhi frowned slightly.
He wanted to continue sounding Yan Tianhen out when he heard someone call out, “Lin Xuanzhi!”
So he could only hold back his thoughts on understanding Yan Tianhen’s current situation for now. Lin Xuanzhi used his soul force to fly onto the testing platform high above. He wore an incomparably elegant and pure white craftsman robe. On the left side of his chest, the five-coloured sacred flames of the Lin family was embroidered on it.
Lin Xuanzhi walked over slowly with a graceful posture. He had an outstanding temperament, which would make one think that he seemed more immortal than human. His gentle and elegant five features made his complexion look similar to that of a jade’s, and his magnificent style was unmatched in his generation.
Lin Xuanzhi got on stage, and the commotion below the stage suddenly died down.
He was once the Lin family’s rising star who had been acclaimed to be the “number one cultivator in the Five Continents”, and he was once the Lin family’s — and even the whole Qing city’s as well as Profound Sky Sect’s — pride and representative. But, one year ago, his Dantian Qi sea had been completely destroyed, so he fell from the clouds and had plunged straight into a muddy swamp.