Chapter 20: A Man Doing Body Exercises
Translator: Strivon / Ash Editor: Geoffrey / Lancent
“There’s a bit of meaning. His defensive and resistive strength are considered the best in the civilian martial arts. He’s ten times better than the weak chickens of your cultivator gym.” Peng Hai also stood up and slowly moved his joints. Every bundle of muscle fiber of his was like a myriad of vipers flowing and roaming underneath his pure white jade-like skin. Spiritual Energy stirred incomparably.
“Of course! This guy’s a professional! How about you first go to the sparring room to prepare. Don’t forget to use the ‘Pattern Mask Glyph’. Don’t let other people discover your true identity,” the bald tattooed man had said to the side. He pushed open the door and walked into the strength training room.
The ripped dude who was hitting the sandbag faced the bald tattooed man and said, “Gym leader Zhao, this mister has been looking for you.”
The tattooed bald man nodded his head. He gave a gaze over to the spideresque design on Li Yao’s face and laughed saying, “You’re here. We have discussed the price quite clearly. You don’t have any problems right?”
“Everything’s good, there are no problems. Let us directly make the transaction,” said Li Yao coldly as he donned the appearance of an old experienced actor.
“Then that’s good. Come with me.” The bald tattooed man led the way in front. He went through a corridor and brought Li Yao to a hundred square meter sparring room.
The atmosphere of the sparring room was more crude. Placed all around on the walls were straw mats meant for cushioning against impacts. The flooring was just a straightforward rough cement floor that had seen use for quite a while since there were bumps everywhere. Cracks could also be found chaotically all around.
The tattooed bald man took out from the corner a set of protective sparring gear, sewn from nine layers of leather, and offered it to Li Yao, indicating that he should wear it.
“We are all part of the same circle, so I don’t need to keep blabbering on. Anyways, as long as you can endure past three minutes, you will receive 10,000 credits. But if you can’t withstand three minutes, then you won’t receive even half a penny. This senior is saying, you’ve worked at quite a few martial art schools as a gold medal sparring partner. What we have here is all standard. You don’t have any problems right?”
“Three minutes? Gold medal sparring partner?” Li Yao blinked his eyes and realized that the opposing party was had mistaken his identity.
The pattern mask glyph wasn’t necessary random in nature. There was a total of over 1,300 different styles. On occasion, it was possible that two different people may receive the same design allowing for mistaken identities. This was known as being “doppelgangers”.
This owner was probably waiting for someone else, a gold medal sparring partner with a spideresque design on his face. Li Yao actually mistakenly became this person.
“I am sorry — ” Li Yao’s next intention was to explain himself, but then his thoughts suddenly stirred.
What did this bald tattooed man just say? If I can withstand 3 minutes, I can get 10,000 credits? Being a sparring partner was surprisingly this profitable?
Li Yao was a bit envious.
He struggled through life and death in the Artifact Graveyard. With painstaking effort, he could only make around 10,000 a month. Even though this time he had painfully gutted Si Jiaxue a blade and earned 100,000 credits, this type of cash cow wasn’t something that Li Yao could happen on anytime he wanted. Right in front of him was the opportunity to earn 10,000 credits just by enduring for 3 minutes. It was enough to buy a dozen more of the strengthening drugs. What was he waiting for? Just do it!
His body had just undergone a change, becoming different. His defensive and resistive strength had increased by a large margin when compared to his previous self. His top layer of skin had become a thick coarse layer of flesh!
And the gym members who would come to Cultivation Gyms of this quality were mostly at the amateur level. Maybe they just got off of work and they might need to go get groceries in a bit. How much strength could they possibly have?
Li Yao line of thought went like this as he looked up and gazed forward to the opposite side. He almost let out a laugh.
A man with a tall thin stature stood in the corner of the sparring room. His upper body was bare, revealing a lack of muscle. His skin seemed to be somewhat deathly pale. On this gentleman’s face was also a ‘Pattern Mask Glyph’. Red and black decorative lines interweaved into the appearance of a laughing clown.
The feeling this clown gave was that this was a completely normal person, a trivial commoner. This person lacked completely the air of an expert.
Li Yao could not help but smile as he entered. This gentleman was in the middle of warming up in completely serious manner. He was doing the Federation’s most fundamental exercise, The 5th Sequence of Body Exercises!
This sequence of body exercises was developed by expert cultivators of the Federation specifically for commoners to keep in shape and to loosen their bodies. Every citizen of the Federation had started learning this since kindergarten. This absolutely was not a type of military-grade technique. It was the most basic of limb movement exercises that did nothing more than to unfold bones, muscles, and tendons.
Nowadays, if one had increased their skill level, they would have displayed more complicated movements such as the 9th Sequence of Body Exercises, which needed slightly more martial skill. As for the completely basic 5th Sequence of Body Exercises, only an elementary school student would continue to use it as a warm-up exercise.
It was clearly the warm-up exercise an elementary school student would use. The smiling clown was actually executing it down to the letter. Not a single hair was out of place. Every movement stretched his body to the limit. It was like the clown was cultivating in some sort of earth-shattering unrivaled feat.
“This 10,000 credits is simply free money off the ground! If I don’t collect it, God will strike me down!” Li Yao shouted madly within his heart.
The bald tattooed man took the protective leather set and draped it on Li Yao’s body. He frowned and asked, “Is there a problem?”
“Uh…” Li Yao muttered to himself for a moment and asked, “I can only take blows? I can’t hit back?”
The bald tattooed man stared blankly for a moment. His expression was both of that of a smile and not a smile. It was like he had just heard the funniest joke in the world. He took from an equipment chest in the corner, a big iron plate insert and strengthened ceramic sheets. He stuck them into specialized pockets on the surface of the protective leather gear.
In this way, Li Yao had three layers of protection on his body — a strengthened ceramic sheet, an iron plate insert, and nine layers of leather.
The bald tattooed man said, “If it makes you happy, go ahead and hit back~ Anyways, I strongly encourage you to first do the utmost to withstand his attack before thinking about this. Okay~ You guys play slowly. I’ll come back in in three minutes. I hope…”
He ended the subject and looked at Li Yao with eyes that conveyed meaning without words. He patted Li Yao once on the shoulder with a strength that was not light nor strong when he withdrew from the sparring room and closed the door.
“It really is a hobbyist level Cultivation Gym. Nevertheless, it’s three minutes of sparring training and nothing more. Is there a need to wear this much safety gear?” Li Yao tried jumping two times and he also swung out a series of sluggish fists. He felt the effect of the protective gear on his body.
He found out that this set of protective gear was made in an utterly elaborate manner. Even though adding the iron plate and strengthened ceramic sheet caused his weight to increase by ten pounds, it did not affect the movement of his limbs. Other than reducing his speed faintly by a bit, it did not affect his offensive and defensive capabilities.
And his opponent was still leisurely warming up. He moved from the fourth movement, the Stretching Exercise, to the sixth movement, Chest Expansion Exercise. If Li Yao was not mistaken, there was still five small movements left!
“This senior, you have been warming up since I entered. Can it be you need to finish the entire sequence of body exercises? Is there a need to be this serious?” Li Yao could not help asking.
The smiling clown was in the middle of maintaining a striding open and arched stance, a state with his chest open. When he heard Li Yao’s words, he ceased his movements. He asked exasperatingly slow, “ You don’t need to warm up?”
“There’s no need. In a real battlefield, you won’t have this much time to warm up!” Li Yao replied somewhat impatiently. He had struggled for survival in the Artifact Grave. Anyways, if he said he would fight, he would fight. If he said he would run, he would run. Fatty Long, Ye Wolf… These bastards. Who would give him time to warm up?”
The smiling clown tilted his head and let out a soft “ah” in surprise. It seemed he did not expect Li Yao to be able to speak out words with this much reason. He pondered for a short moment and nodded saying, “What you said is correct. I am done preparing. Three minutes… starts now!”
In practically the moment when the words “Starts Now” traveled into Li Yao’s ears, the ear piercing sound of the wind breaking bore into his eardrum. Just an instant ago, the smiling clown was still several dozen meters away engaging in his arched stance doing his chest expansion exercise. The next instant he had actually completely disappeared.
Li Yao absolutely was not capable of seeing through the movement trajectory of this smiling clown. All he felt was a stab of pincushion-esque pain coming from his sternum. It was like an incorporeal hand had pierced through his three layers of protection in an instant! It directly pierced into his chest and firmly gripped onto his heart!
“— What the devil is this!?”