Chapter 68: Back to the Spotlight
Learn a martial art in one day?
Han stared at Pathless Origin skeptically and whispered, “Teacher, do you have a fever? The 46 Ensemble, which is like the most basic out of the basics, you told me to practice it for a full 6 months, but now you want me to learn a more esoteric martial art. You actually want me to learn it in one day?”
Pathless Origin laughed out loud, “That’s right, you only need one day anyways! Now that you have a solid foundation, you must remember martial arts are not something you learn and master in the training room, but on the battlefield!”
“Today, you just need to remember the things I teach you. As to what extent this martial art will take you, it will depend on your own comprehension.”
Han nodded and seriously said, “Ok.”
Pathless stroked his short beard, took out a dark memory chip, and a glimpse of coldness flashed in his eyes, “Today the martial art style I will teach you is called the Star Break Fist.”
“One punch that can break stars?!” Han was slightly shocked.
Pathless Origin said proudly, “Yes, that’s right. The thing in my hand is the last memory chip of this martial art style in the entire Milky Way. It was extracted from some relic. The Old Night Walker gave you half a Heart of Darkness, how can I lose to him? I will give you this limited edition Star Break Fist, because it’s no use for me anyways.”
After about an hour, Han walked out of the virtual reality pod in confusion.
The technology of the Milky Way galaxy was very advanced. Things like learning martial art could directly be done through the format of data transmission into the brain, and Han already remotely accepted the techniques of the Star Break Fist style in the virtual reality pod. At the moment, Han felt like his brain was as chaotic as muddy water, as if someone suddenly stuffed a lot of random things in to it.
Returning to the training room, Pathless smiled and asked, “How do you feel about this martial art technique?”
Han pondered for a moment and said, “The Star Break Fist seems to be not just a set of boxing techniques, but a fighting style that can also go really well with weapons. It’s just that, I need more experience with it to be more conclusive.”
Pathless slightly nodded, seems like he’s quite satisfied with Han’s understanding so far, and he said, “Not bad, now do it once in front of me.”
So, Han began to practice what he just learned, but what happened was totally unexpected. In theory, inheriting martial art styles through memory chips means that the techniques should be engraved in his brain already, but Han just made a few moves and he already forgot what’s next.
“Don’t think! Use your intuition! Find a way to make up for what you don’t remember!” Pathless was very strict and he shouted. Although the relationship between this strange old man and Han already improved a lot, but for all the crucial moments, he still couldn’t supress that hot temper of his.
Han was embarrassed. He wouldn’t say that he was a genius, but he knew that at least he didn’t have any trouble memorizing stuff. Night Walker gave a pharmacology book to him before which information on tens of thousands of drugs and Han memorized them all. How come he just can’t remember these Star Break Fist techniques?
After completely a so-so quality set of Star Break, Han frowned as he tried to remember those techniques that was transmitted into his brain.
“Don’t think! Practice again for me! If you forget, make up your own moves!”
Han was shocked, and he quickly began to practice for the second time but this time it was even worse. At first, he could still remember about half of the moves, but not it wasn’t even a third. For the majority of the time, Han needed to rely on his intuition to make up for the gaps between moves.
Han was very anxious, he felt like he became stupid or something. He couldn’t even remember a few moves.
After he was done, he started practicing for the third time and the situation did not get better. This time, he forgot about 75%.
After the third time around, Pathless asked Han to practice for the fourth time, and Han just felt a crazy wave of dizziness. He finally got to remember some moves, but in the blink of an eye he already forgot 90% of it.
After all, the Star Break Fist was something precious that came out of the extinction domain, and it was already an extremely rare opportunity to acquire such a top-level martial art, how did he forget it in the blink of an eye? Han felt a sudden urge to cry but had no tears.
And Pathless, that strange old man, was still telling Han to practice and practice. And the more he practiced the more he forgot, the more he forgot the more nervous he got, and the more nervous he got the more he forgot.
In the blink of an eye, 10 hours passed by. Han’s body was covered in sweat. He had already gone through the routines 17 times, and just when Pathless shouted at Han to make him practice one more time, Han stood there like a wooden chicken and didn’t even make a move.
“Why aren’t you practicing?” Pathless strictly asked.
Han shook his head, grimaced and said, “I think, I forgot it all.”
“You really forgot it all?”
“Forgot it all?! Like, nothing left?”
“Yep, not a single move.”
Han was 100% sure that no one’s laugh was creepier than Pathless Origin’s. Han raised his head and curiously looked at the strange old man.
After laughing crazily, Pathless Origin’s eyes became cold again, and he said seriously to Han, “Congratulations, you learned Star Break Fist!”
Han couldn’t believe his ears, “I forgot it all, and you said I learned it?”
Pathless nodded, “Yes, this set of technique is designed to let you forget. You don’t remember all the moves, but you still remember the essence and unique features of this set of techniques right?”
Han thought about it, “I think the essence of the Star Break Fist style is attack. On Earth we have a saying, use softness to counter toughness, but Star Break is the exact opposite. It emphasizes that attack is the best defense, and if the enemy is tough, then you have to be tougher than the enemy.”
“As for technique, Star Break is about high flexibility, fast pace, fierce blows…”
Pathless narrowed his eyes and nodded as he listened. After Han was done, he couldn’t help but to exclaim, “You have exceeded my expectations, looks like you truly understood the meaning behind Star Break Fist.”
“Overall, Star Break is about breaking the routine. When the enemy’s strong, teachers usually tell you to first avoid the edge and then choose the right time to strike, but Star Break is the direct opposite and tells you to break storms with storms.”
“Like I said before, the highest level of martial arts is actually about forgetting. Only when you forget all those moves, then you won’t be restrained by them. And without restrains, then you can unleash the strongest fighting strength.”
“Learning martial arts is about remembering what’s exactly taught in the books? No, it never is! Everyone’s a different individual, no matter how good someone is with a style of martial art, it might not be the best for you. That’s why we have to learn the martial art itself. It’s not for learning those moves, but for how to convert the things you learned into your own fighting style.”
The wisest reason, is to be unreasonable. The strongest martial art techniques, is to have no techniques!”
“Having no way is actually the way of the Heaven!”
“Having no way is actually the way of Heaven?” Han raised his head and asked.
Pathless slightly smiled, and waved, “Go and attend the last stage of the pressure exam, I look forward to your performance.”
Han packed up his dark net login program, and walked out of the room with big steps. When he passed the lobby, he stopped at a screen and opened the shocking webpage.
It was the page that had the videos of how all the brothers from the training camp got eliminated, and below were many unsightly comments. Expressing the “best” satires towards the soldiers from Earth, saying that Earth is a planet that is rich in trash, and sent a group of trash-like espers to embarrass itself in front of the entire Milky Way.
Long Chuan quietly came in on his wheel chair, seeing Han watching those videos, he was a bit worried and said, “Han, time is running out.”
Han nodded, and whispered, “I know, there are 52 more hours until the end of the pressure exam. The 4th round is the medal game which takes 12 hours, the 5th round is Meteor Shower which is another 12 hours, and the last round is the Road to the Netherworld which needs 24 hours. That’s 48 hours in total so we have enough time.”
Long Chuan slightly nodded, Han was the most unique member of the training camp. Although he was here, he wasn’t anyone’s student. Long Chuan knew clearly that Han had a rather mysterious teacher.
“So you want to look at how others were eliminated? And then analyze their tactics?” Long Chuan curiously asked.
Han shook his head, “No, I just want to remember those that laid hands on our people, and their names.”
“And then?” Long Chuan asked.
“And then if I can meet them, kill them.” Han replied with ice-cold tone.
In the virtual reality pod, Han pressed the activation button.
The light flashed past. After a lapse of several months, Han finally appeared at the Milky Way Meet’s preliminary round lobby once again. Facing the familiar faces of the square and the portals, Han actually felt a bit warmth in his heart.
There wasn’t enough time left to the completion of the pressure exam, the majority of the contestants already completed all the test and were waiting at home for the results. There weren’t a lot of people left on the square, and it was a bit depressing.
Han paused for a bit, and went straight to a random portal with big steps.
In front of his chest was a light screen. Everyone could see clearly that he came from the 57th Sector of the Milky Way, Earth.
“Look, another trash from Earth!”
“What happened? Were all the trash from Earth eliminated?”
“Maybe it’s just some fish that slipped through the net that was scared so he waited until the last moment to attend the exam.”
“Quick, let’s go to a portal. If we can go to the same battlefield as that brat, then it will be awesome. Someone placed a bounty, killing an esper from Earth once is 1 million GC, beheading doubles the reward and that’s 2 million! It’s like money that’s just lying there.”
Finding out that Han was from Earth, the square became restless, many people began to discuss how to take Han’s head and exchange it for bounty.
The square was open, and all those words also fell into Han’s ears. One had just seen him step unhesitantly into the portal, and the corner of his mouth was curled in a slight grin.