Old man Lu Qing Chen smiled and asked, “What do you want to know?”
Ning Que thought seriously for a long time ”I want to know….what is Xiu Xing.”
Lu Qing Chen laughed, “You’re really greedy.”
Ning Que did not feel embarrassed “So…can you tell me how many stages there are in Xiu Xing, do different stages have different abilities?”
“You surprise me again.” Old man Lu Qing Chen smiled and said, “Even though common people don’t really understand such things clearly, they are not actual secrets.”
“They are not actual secrets to xiu xingist but they are still secrets to the common people.” Ning Que laughed and answered, “I will keep the secrets for you.”
“Fine.” Lu Qing Chen laughed out loud, pausing for a while then asked, “do you know the Great Sky Way?”
Ning Que, looking at this Xiu Xingist from the South Gate in the Great Sky Way, nodded his head.
“I am from the South Gate in the Great Sky Way. I was ordered to travel around the world. The commoners usually call us Precedents. Therefore, if you want to know things related to Xiu Xing, I will begin with the Great Sky Way.”
“The Great Sky Way worships Heaven. It is the only legal religion in the world. Because Heaven favors the world, all beings can breathe in Qi. The Qi that I am talking about is basically the Qi of nature, so everything begins from Heaven.”
“Human is only one type of animal. They were originally ignorant until Heaven gave them enlightenment. They began to understand nature. Then they used mental powers to control the Qi, doing mysterious things. This is called Xiu Xing.”
“The path of Xiu Xing is really long, complex, and harsh. It requires strong spirit. Therefore, we split the path into five segments or the five stages you referred to.”
“The primary stage is called First Vision, meaning that Xiu Xingists can extend their mental powers outside of the Sea and Mountain of Qi, realizing the existence of Qi in nature.”
“The second stage is called sensation . At this stage, Xiu Xingists can touch the Qi of nature flowing around the world, and live harmoniously with it. They can even do some communications with the Qi.”
“The third stage is called doubtless, refering to Xiu Xingists who already have a simple understanding of the pattern of Qi’s flow and how to use it. The so called Sword Masters and Charmists are in this stage.”
(Sword Masters and Charmists are what commoners refer to xiuxingists that belong to the third stage because they don’t understand the system of xiuxing. Once they go to the 4th stage they have separate names like charmists named by the commoners => great Charmists)
“The fourth stage is called Seethrough. The Xiu Xingists who entered this stage can fuse their spirit with the Qi of nature. To Psychic Masters, this means they can attack enemies directly with their mental power. Staying at this stage for a long time will allow them to do some extremely mysterious things.”
“Youngster, don’t look at me like that. I am in the Seethrough stage but I barely entered the stage and I am already so old. Now I am about to die. I probably don’t have a chance to experience and study further into the stage. Otherwise…it wouldn’t have been that difficult to kill a Great Sword Master.”
The light in the wagon was really dull, maybe it lacked oil or maybe not. The old man Lu Qing Chen laughed as he spoke, then he looked down to his left leg, sighing on how fast he aged, time never waits.
“The fifth stage is called Fate Seeker.”
“The so called Fate Seeker, is simply seeking fate.”
“The Xiu Xingists entered this stage not only understood the Qi’s pattern from the surface, but also figured out the basis on how way the Qi flows. They understand the connection between Heaven and nature, the ultimate source of the world. Probably, only the people who reached this stage are considered to have learned the Way.”
Ning Que was fascinated by these stuffs, realizing that the old man had finished speaking, he immediately raised his hand and asked, “Sir, is there higher any stage after the five stages?”
“Why do you think so?”Lu Qing Chen looked at him interested.
He replied, “If Xiu xing is really a long path, then this path must have no end. In fact, there are no inaccessible ways in this world, so I believe there must be higher stages.”
“You, who can’t even enter the Primary stage, gave me the impression that you would be disappointed and had given up. I didn’t expect you be still interested in the way.”
Hearing the old man’s friendly teasing, Ning Que laughed even more innocently “Maybe that is because I am studious.”
“I never saw a man who was more studious than perverts.” Lu Qing Chen smiled.
(It is suppose to be a play on words because in chinese perverts and studious person are very close to pronunciation so Lu Qing Chen is teasing Ning Que, but alas the there is only so much we can do about these language difference… )
Ning Que complimented the elder’s phrase in his heart and then edited the sentence, “Then it wouldn’t be studious, but rather curious.”
Lu Qing Chen thought silently for a while, and then he rose his head and looked at Ning Que, “According to myths there are many miraculous stages above Fate Seeker, but there were only two of such stages appeared in the historical record. One of them is Godsend, and the other is Boundless.”
“The so called Godsend stage indicates that the xiuxingist is able to listen to the message of the Heaven directly and use Divine Sorcery by absorbing the Heavenly Light. Think about this – to be able to use the enormous amount of Heavenly Light that is present throughout the world and enchant it into one’s body, you can imagine how powerful and mysterious Godsend is.”
Ning Que was picturing the elder’s description in his head. A man wearing a silky white robe kneeled before the vast sky, a moment later a flash of light came down from heaven and torn the misty cloud apart. Imagining such power was able to move clouds and shake mountains, Ning Que’s heart started beating faster. He spoke again, but his voice was hoarse for some reason.
“Boundless……what kind of stage is that?”
“The said stage did appear in a historical record, but it wasn’t a vivid description. There was only one sentence: The heart is the limit.”
Lu Qing Chen wrinkled his eyebrows slightly, but his facial expression remained calm as usual. He continued, “My prediction is that the xiuxingists who were able to reach the stage of Boundless were able to teleport thousands of miles away with just one thought…….How impressive is that!”
‘The heart is the limit’ ……Ning Que was moved deeply by the sentence, but what limit was it talking about? limit of distance or rules?
Faintly he captured a certain meaning of the word Boundless, but he didn’t think it was impressive like the elder, but rather carefree and limitless.
“The Academy should have more records about the stage of Boundless.”
Lu Qing Chen looked at Ning Que’s smooth complexion and signed, “Xiuxingists who were able to reach these two stages were for sure Saints. Although an ancient phrase said that every one thousand year a Saint will descent into the world, but who knew for how many years there hasn’t been a Saint born into this world. Therefore these…….are just legends and myths, don’t think too much about them.”
Ning Que bowed again to show that he appreciated the elder’s teaching.
The elder laughed, “I thought you were going to ask who are the famous great xiuxingists in the world and where were the hidden masters located. It seemed like youngsters like you would be interested in those things but I never expected you to ask me these questions.”
Ning Que’s two hands were holding his knees.He remained silent for a long time then raised his head and replied sincerely, “Knowing who are the strongest xiuxingists in the world means nothing to me. They are the eagles flying high in the sky, while I’m the ant struggling to move on the ground. In their eyes, I don’t exist, therefore they shouldn’t be in my view either.”
“Then……why did you ask about the basic information of xiuxing?” The elder was surprised.
Ning Que replied, “Those great xiuxingists wouldn’t appear in my life for now, but after I enter Chang An I will probably encounter some regular xiuxingists. For exmaple, that great sword master who dressed like a scholar in a green robe. Since I don’t have the potential to xiuxing, I need to know what is xiuxing and understand their way of combat….”
“And what is your goal?” The elder raised his white eyebrows, he showed great interest in Ning Que’s answer.
Ning Que lowered his head and smiled, then raised his head to reply, “If in the future I need to fight against xiuxingists, the things you taught me today will aid me greatly and help me obtain victory.”
“A regular person is able to fight against xiuxingist who can use the ki of nature and you want to defeat them?”
The elder stared into Ning Que’s eyes and asked repeatedly. Suddenly his eyebrows shook violently and a laughter bursted out of his old and fragile body, “Hah Hah Hah Hah!”
The laughter died out slowly, and the elder looked at Ning Que who was embarrassed. He smiled and said, “Challenging, I like it.”