Chapter 187: Life Saving Weapon
When Wang Chao saw Yong Xiaolong step back, he knew that it would be difficult for Liu Qing to win.
Yong Xiaolong’s “Ground Tumbling Blade” had reached a level of being able to “cut cloth”. His leg was basically the same as an actual blade.
It was similar to Cheng Shanming’s usage of the “Dragging Blade” from Baguazhang.
But then what was different from Cheng Shanming’s usage and Yong Xiaolong’s usage was the fact that Cheng Shanming used his palm while Yong Xiaolong used his leg. The “Ground Tumbling Blade” sheared with the foot with great accuracy and was meant to strike at the person as they were about to dispel Jin from their bodies. The arteries and muscles where power was being generated from were the most specific parts.
In the moment of shearing, the sole of the foot acted with the braced muscles to generate and expel Jin. Combined with the speed in which it traveled, and the foot would be as terrifying as an actual blade.
If one wasn’t careful and was struck on the skin by this foot blade, then it would without a doubt streak across one of the arteries and cause a serious enough nick to bring forth blood.
Yong Xiaolong’s leg was incredibly fast however. Like a bolt of lightning, his foot was practically a blur to anyone that didn’t have a sharp eye.
A speed like that was something that even Liao Junhua’s “Dog Passing Water” couldn’t even compare with.
Compared to this young warrior monk, even Wang Chao himself wasn’t sure of his chances of winning. Liu Qing was strong in Baguazhang, but compared to Cheng Shanming, he was definitely lacking in perfection. Yong Xiaolong’s martial arts and drive were superior to Cheng Shanming. If Liu Qing and Yong Xiaolong were to continue fighting, the chances of Liu Qing sustaining a grave injury would be about eighty to ninety percent.
Of all the amazing people that Wang Chao had met, the only ones that could stand a decent enough chance against Yong Xiaolong would be the “Little War God” Zhou Binglin and the Japanese martial artist Iga Minamoto.
For the sake of regaining their honor, the Shaolin Temple was sparing no expenses.
With a single step, Wang Chao had stepped coincidentally right in between the two combatants’ path.
“Very well. Student Liu, your technique wasn’t bad, but stand down and allow instructor Wang and I show where you went wrong.”
Yong Xiaolong had relaxed his stance as if nothing had happened at all during that fight. It was almost as if he was truly trying to show all the students here an exemplary demonstration.
Liu Qing had startled to say the very least when he saw the state of his clothes. The camo suit was something that was made of very tough and durable material–but it had been cut so easily by Yong Xiaolong’s foot! This feat alone had told Liu Qing that Yong Xiaolong was definitely on par with Duan Guochao at the very least.
“I’ll leave this to master Wang then. Shaolin martial arts really are quite diverse and refined. There’s plenty of techniques and arts that aren’t told to outsiders for the warrior monks to study and learn. I haven’t even scratched the surface and this loss is clearly a good example of that. Let’s see how master Wang will do.”
Without a word, Liu Qing took off his shirt and slinked back.
“Students, I believe you all saw just how instructor Yong had used one of the esoteric arts of Shaolin, the “Ground Tumbling Blade”. At its release, only the big toe of the foot is pointed up while the other four toes are drawn in. This way, the sole of the foot can maximize its sharp edge like a blade.”
Although he was about to fight with Yong Xiaolong, Wang Chao was still intent on teaching the thousand students here. He would fight a true battle under the surface, but on the surface, he would be teaching them. He couldn’t fight without speaking a word like a hoodlum.
And so Wang Chao had explained just how the theory behind Yong Xiaolong’s foot worked for everyone to learn from.
“Instructor Wang, I have a question. When instructor Yong swept out with his foot, none of us saw any release of power in any way. But from what you just said, this type of power is the equivalent of the ‘Sokuto’ technique of Karate?”
A sudden question was called out from one of the students proficient with Karate.
“During the Ming Dynasty, the Ground Tumbling Blade from our southern Shaolin Temple was brought over and taught in Okinawa during the Republic of China. The Japanese world of martial arts later came to call this technique the Sokuto based on the ancient Okinawan arts.”
Stepping forward, Yong Xiaolong had taken the explanation of his martial arts in stride and spoke glibly, “When the birth of Shaolin martial arts came to be, nothing else could be said to be a marvel in comparison. Instructor Wang made his name with Xingyiquan, an art that was learned from the Dharmic teachings of the Shaolin pictograms from Zen Buddhism. During the Republic of China, many masters of Xingyiquan took to these Dharmic paintings and worshipped the teachings they derived from it.”
“The birth of Shaolin….”
Stifling a snort, Wang Chao did not bother to say a thing or dispute the facts with Yong Xiaolong. He was a monk and would naturally say these things. Yong Xiaolong was a clearly very astute monk. With his age, he was able to become the head of the German branch of the Shaolin Temple. If he couldn’t persuade the mass with the skill of his tongue, he would not be worthy of being a head.
“But we are digressing from the main topic at hand, instructor Yong.” Wang Chao interjected with the express purpose of trying to speed up the conversation, “Let us go back to the demonstration then.”
“Instructor Wang is correct. This was to be a demonstration. A key point of any battle is the element of surprise. For example….”
As soon as he finished speaking, Yong Xiaolong was already moving towards Wang Chao.
There had been a prickling sensation on Wang Chao’s skin. The previously tranquil air had just slightly picked up with a small tremble. This type of acute hypersensitivity was something that even the usually sensitive people wouldn’t be able to sense. But Wang Chao had already known; Yong Xiaolong was already making his attack with a burst of Jin.
Sure enough, as soon as Wang Chao felt his skin vibrate just slightly from the vibrations in the air, two ashen-gray arms had already came forward to grab at his wrists.
Yong Xiaolong’s arms were pure and without a blemish or scar, but when he had released Jin from them, a transformation had been made. From his normal skin color, his arms became as pale as the claws of a ghost in a terrifying manner.
This was one of the grappling techniques of the Shaolin dragon stance, the Azure Dragon Ascent from Water!
This one hand of Yong Xiaolong had indeed been unexpected.
If this was an actual competition of martial arts, then this act would be considered a sneak attack. But because they were in a class teaching about how to fight, any methods used here would be a clever way to try and kill the enemy while under the guise of being a lesson.
Thus, this sneak attack was in accordance to what was appropriate to be taught. There was no ifs or buts about it, and no one could really complain about the logic behind this.
Let us say that if Wang Chao had been captured by this, then people would only say that he hadn’t been vigilant enough. What kind of poor excuse of an instructor would he be then? His name would be damaged beyond reparation.
Because of just how fast this technique was, Wang Chao had practically no time to move out of the way. But then almost as if his arms were without bones, they shot quickly back into his robes.
This technique was of the crocodile stance, the Tortoise Hearing Thunder!
As the one known as the Crocodile Immortal, this technique of Wang Chao could be said to be on par with Guo Yunshen and his senior student, Che Yizhai.
With his hand retreating back into the sleeves, Yong Xiaolong had grabbed onto nothing as a result. But then he did not loosen his guard and immediately followed up the action like a shadow chasing the body. In .2 seconds, Yong Xiaolong’s hands had crawled up the sleeves to latch onto Wang Chao’s shoulders firmly.
There hadn’t been any sound, but the cement beneath Yong Xiaolong’s feet had already started to form several cracks as if a steam roller had gone over it.
From this, it could be seen just how powerful his grappling techniques were.
This firm step forward was a part of what the Shaolin called, “Press the Head to Drink Water”. The history behind this saying originated from the phrase, “If the ox does not drink, force it’s head down.”
Yong Xiaolong’s skill at this technique was strong enough to force the heads of two bulls down with both his hands. Furthermore, the oxen wouldn’t even be able to take another step forward.
But even more importantly, Yong Xiaolong could force an elephant down into submission, let alone two oxen.
What Yong Xiaolong hoped to accomplish with this “Press the Head to Drink Water” was to force Wang Chao down into the ground.
This type of grappling technique was specifically aimed at forcing Wang Chao to being unable to dodge to the side. Even more specifically, Yong Xiaolong was aiming to break down Wang Chao’s ability to use the killing moves of the crocodile stance.
Wang Chao would only need to be forced down in order to eat up a humiliating loss. In front of all these students, the shame would be so great that he may as well kill himself.
In the one instant Yong Xiaolong pressed down on Wang Chao’s shoulders, the back muscles of Wang Chao had throbbed once as if forming the shell of a tortoise while there was a giant python wrapped around it.
“Snake Hidden Within Tortoise! Python Rampage!”
When Yong Xiaolong had pressed down onto Wang Chao’s shoulders, he had been startled to see Wang Chao’s reaction to say the least. He hadn’t expected that within Wang Chao’s crocodile fist, the characteristics of the snake would be seen. Yong Xiaolong had the previous notion that Wang Chao was a pure practitioner of the crocodile stance without any variations.
The snake coiled around the tortoise was an esoteric art from the Wudang style!
But Yong Xiaolong had naturally another move in store. After his first attempt to force Wang Chao down, he had made use of Wang Chao’s twisting motions with his upper arms to twist his own body like a snake as well. While it didn’t completely shake off Wang Chao, he had been able to push him away enough for him to twist his body and stamp his foot out in a backwards motion.
This was one of the three paths to Shaolin’s Mountain Suppressing Fist. “Tread the Mountain.”
Of the three paths to the Mountain Suppressing Fist, there was the “Tread the Mountain”, “Turn the Ocean”, and “Support the Heavens”. There weren’t any standardized forms, but rather, they were all movements to be emphasized.
To the Hsueh style Xingyiquan, there was the “pierce, flow, sway, shift, and rotate” sequences. Of the five, the Hsueh style Xingyiquan studied them to their limits for the sake of martial arts and emphasized the movements rather than forms. This movement of “stamp”, or “tread”, could be done whatever the situation.
This was the same as what everyone yearned for in the world. The power is with my movements, rather than my form. Like the how a millet could be used in place of a rifle to shoot down an airplane rather than a cannon, the power was with the movements and the utilization. No matter how one fought, there was a way to win.
But without one’s martial arts reaching a state of absolute freedom and enthrallment with the pursuit of it–that was to say, the realm of Transforming Jin–this type of philosophy with movements and forms could not be debated.
With Yong Xiaolong directing his kicking force outwards, it was like trying to push a mountain into the sea. Even Wang Chao would be pushed away from this.
But unfortunately for him, Wang Chao had not been pushed away. On the inverse, his body didn’t even move at all. With a twist of his body and locking of his arms, Wang Chao had adopted a form similar to a tortoise basking the shell on it’s back in sunlight.
The tortoise stays with the snake moves. This tortoise and snake sharing the same body had been shown through his martial arts vividly and with great detail.
As Yong Xiaolong tried his best, it had been for naught. No matter how much he tried, he had only managed to touch upon Wang Chao’s sleeves.
And Wang Chao’s sleeves had been like the waves to the ocean. As Yong Xiaolong kicked them out into the “sea”, there was no point in his movements however.
Next came the Rising Wave Momentum of the Assault of Dragon and Snake!
It was also called the Rising Wave of the Dragon and Snake
He had used this skill once in his match against Cheng Shanming back in Singapore.
But this time, Wang Chao had been even more skillful with it, and its display was ten times more brilliant.
It was from his match with Jiang Hai that Wang Chao had started to understand the concept of the snake being intertwined with the body of the snake from the Wudang styles. From there, he had managed to polish it into his own fighting philosophy.
This one move contained the spirit of a python twisting its body in its conceptual theory. At the last movement, the dragon and snake would coil around to bind the enemy before killing it. Wang Chao had turned his crocodile fist into the dragon and altered the artistic imitation to go with the transition perfectly.
The Crocodile was inherently based off of the dragon! The tortoise was the dragon, and the alligator was the dragon as well.
The sleeves to the camo suit hadn’t been too long to begin with. But Wang Chao had brought his arms inwards to his body so as to lengthen the sleeves to a suitable length for this one technique.
Tzk! Somehow, blood came splitting out from Yong Xiaolong’s mouth. After Yong Xiaolong’s attempt to throw out Wang Chao’s back and body, his arms had immediately felt that something had gone awry. And in the next second, Wang Chao’s arms shot out from his sleeves to scratch out his arteries with his fingernails.
The Rising Wave of Dragon and Snake was to fight with the sleeves and entangle the person. From the sleeves hid the hands, and that mimicked the dragon or snake hiding within the depths of the sea.
When his arms grew cold, Yong Xiaolong knew that he had lost. If he delayed for the next 0-1 seconds, he would definitely be in mortal danger.
Whoosh! His body flew up in a backwards retreat along with his hands to land far away from Wang Chao and for his Rising Wave of the Dragon and Snake to miss him. This was the “Falling Step of the Lotus” and was usually an escaping method.
“The retreat of a monk is quite fast!” At the same time Wang Chao had split apart Yong Xiaolong’s arms with his fingernails, he had tried to use his arms to put him into submission. After the Rising Wave of the Dragon and Snake came the “Capturing Dragon Tearing Snake”. If successful, Yong Xiaolong’s arm would be a complete and utter mess–even his bones would be utterly fractured.
The display of Wang Chao’s fight had been cheap to describe with words, but his actions were filled with the quintessence of all he knew of martial arts. Wang Chao had meant to depose of Yong Xiaolong now to prevent trouble in the future.
Since he and the Shaolin Temple had plenty of grudges with one another, Wang Chao had given up on a friendly reparation. From the start, him being called the “Crocodile Immortal” was a nickname based off of how he crippled all of his opponents.
Yong Xiaolong’s martial arts were outrageously strong. And with his young age, he was an unbelievable threat as an enemy.
To live in the Jianghu wasn’t as nice as having guests over for dinner. One had to fight with a sharp eye, a quick hand, and a vicious heart.
But who would have known that Yong Xiaolong would have dodged this strike without Wang Chao succeeding for once.
Wang Chao had not let up however. When Yong Xiaolong retreated, Wang Chao pursued him like the shadow to a tree. Like the tiger out from its nest or a bear from its cave, he gave chase. He wanted to capitalize on this golden opportunity to strike down or cripple this young monk in front of him.
There wouldn’t be any punishment or crimes to be seen here. Since the two of them were demonstrating, he could attribute Yong Xiaolong’s death to a slip up without much retribution.
He was putting his all into the next few moves of his. If Wang Chao couldn’t cripple or kill Yong Xiaolong now, then his opponent would definitely be on guard for the future. And there would be no guarantee that Wang Chao wouldn’t have the upper hand again.
Yong Xiaolong was far stronger than Zhou Binglin in his own ways.
But in this one movement of Wang Chao, Yong Xiaolong had been prepared. Instantaneously, his hand flew to a pouch near his robes and took out something.
Tinkle! Three flashes of silver could be seen as they flew towards Wang Chao’s face.
Leaning his head to the side, Wang Chao watched as the silver lights make contact with the reinforced concrete walls and stay embedded into it.
It was three coins.
If a poker card was spun fast enough, it could slit the throat of a person. A coin could do the same thing.
WIth Wang Chao’s movement halted, Yong Xiaolong had been able to take in a deep breath.
Widening the distance, Yong XIaolong had been saved. The chance Wang Chao had to kill him had been lost.
It was then that Yong Xiaolong looked down at where Wang Chao’s fingernails had scratched across his arms. It had not been that serious and wouldn’t pose much of a threat to his ability to fight. With the distance widened and his breathing back on track, if Wang Chao didn’t do something now, Yong Xiaolong would be able to run away without a problem.
There was no more meaning in trying to continue to fight.
“How unfortunate, he is neither crippled or dead. That means trouble for the future.” Wang Chao suddenly felt like Liu Bang when he failed to kill Xiang Yu at his own banquet.