314 Start of the Tes
"Jiang Chen, no matter how much you've earned, without the twenty million from the Hero Palace, you wouldn't have been able to make any profit, right?" a grand elder tried to reason with him.
"Yes, I agree. That's why I'm willing to pay my allowance back hundredfold. The method to develop extraordinary meridians that I gave to the Hero Palace was a gift, no strings attached.
"I'm guessing that would be enough to pay back my debts, wouldn't it?"
However, Grand Elder Snowbrow sneered at him, "You're guessing that's enough? Do you think it's that important to develop extraordinary meridians? You haven't solved the problem of those Reaching Heaven States who've already developed some of their extraordinary meridians. Twenty million upper-grade yuan stones is a dream beyond reach for a poor guy like you!"
"Oh? You think so?"
At that point, the grand elders still regarded him as a poor, ignorant guy who was under their control.
Jiang Chen decided to teach them a lesson.
"All right. I'm developing my fifth extraordinary meridian. I'll auction the method to develop the third and the fourth extraordinary meridians. Let's see how much it's worth."
"What? Jiang Chen, you've developed more?!"
"Auction?! Don't act recklessly!"
The grand elders were very realistic. As time went by, Jiang Chen hadn't shown them any results. Naturally, they had stopped thinking highly of him.
Besides, they had the method to develop the first two extraordinary meridians. That was why they had the nerve to go there that day, but they hadn't expected Jiang Chen to have proceeded to the fifth. He had never told them about it!
What would they have thought if they knew all eight of Jiang Chen's extraordinary meridians had been developed?
"Jiang Chen, don't act impulsively…" Grand Elder Snowbrow backed down immediately. Her arrogance was completely gone.
"What? Elder Snowbrow, didn't you say two extraordinary meridians weren't worth twenty million? That the money I earned to get a Golden Dragon Card should go to the Hero Palace?"
"No. No," said Grand Elder Snowbrow.
"Oh? So, elder, did you mean to say that the Hero Palace took advantage of me?"
Jiang Chen silenced her completely. None of the other grand elders were able to respond to him, either.
Jiang Chen sneered and said, "Trust is important for cooperation. I feel grateful to the Hero Palace and the Sacred Institute, but if you want to exploit me, or insult my friends, I won't allow it!"
"I'll discuss with Nan Gong, first. Before that, we'll go take the test. Make way."
Then Jiang Chen left with Ying Wushuang.
After the two were far away, the grand elders glanced at each other and followed them without speaking.
Ying Wushuang said, "If you tell the elders about the Heaven Halo Bead—"
"If I tell them, they'll be very happy, but soon they'll regard it as my responsibility to give it to them, which will cause me more trouble," Jiang Chen interrupted her.
Then he glanced at Ying Wushuang and said, "Wushuang, you don't have to put up with all this. I'm here for you."
"Yeah?" Ying Wushuang was surprised to hear this. She didn't feel very comfortable.
Jiang Chen smiled and realized that at that moment, he wasn't Master Chu Yun. The same words worked in different ways under different identities.
"Where have you been the past couple of days?" Ying Wushuang was embarrassed, so she tried to shift the topic.
"That Golden Dragon Card is real?"
"You earned a Golden Dragon Card in only a few days?"
"I don't believe you." Ying Wushuang curled her lips and walked ahead.
This time, it was Jiang Chen who was surprised. It looked like every woman had a lovely side. The problem was whether she was willing to show it to him.
The Hero Palace's test was held in the square beside the cliff. Many disciples had gathered there when they arrived.
Since the test wasn't obligatory, less than half of the disciples had shown up, and all of them were below Cloud Five of the Reaching Heaven State.
"Huh, I thought you wouldn't come," Murong Yuan scorned as soon as she saw Ying Wushuang.
The expression on her face when she was facing Jiang Chen was entirely different from when she faced Master Chu Yun, as were her clothes. Jiang Chen found it interesting.
"I heard you two were living together. Shame on you," Murong Yuan said in a mean tone when she made eye contact with Jiang Chen.
"Murong Yuan, if you can't control your own man, don't vent your anger on others," Ying Wushuang responded bluntly.
It turned out that Mo Jianfei had gone to see Ying Wushuang after he had been reproached by Murong Xiong and left in a fit of anger. He had said many sweet words outside of Ying Wushuang's room that were overheard by disciples passing by.
There had been a big fight between Murong Yuan and Mo Jianfei because of it.
Of course, Ying Wushuang hadn't opened the door to meet him. Otherwise, the couple wouldn't simply have fought.
"What are you doing?!"
Elder Du Yue walked over with a sullen face. He stared at Jiang Chen angrily. "Are you picking a fight?"
"She started it," said Ying Wushuang.
Jiang Chen stopped her and said, "Wushuang, in the elder's eyes, Murong Yuan can do no wrong."
Both Du Yue and Murong Yuan were irritated.
"Do you want your hand tendons to be cut again?"
"Do you really think I can do nothing to you?!"
Jiang Chen didn't respond to Murong Yuan. He looked at Du Yue and said, "Do you dare? Turn around."
Du Yue turned around and saw the grand elders coming.
None of them looked to be in a good mood, especially Grand Elder Snowbrow, who looked like someone owed her money. Du Yue was sweating in fear.
He couldn't possibly know that it was because of Jiang Chen, and it had nothing to do with him.
He didn't dare act out.
"Elder, don't be angry. Someone will kneel down and embarrass herself soon," said Murong Yuan.
She was wearing flats, her toes visible. The curve of her fair instep was perfect.
If Ying Wushuang lost, she would have to kneel down and kiss her shoes to apologize.
People couldn't help but wonder whether it was intentional that she was wearing those shoes that day.
"Ying Wushuang, my test is already over. Now we only have to wait for your results. As for my result, see for yourself."
Murong Yuan pointed at a wooden sign beside the square. The test results had been written on it.
Murong Yuan had broken her record in all of the three test items, and she was in first place at the time. Even disciples in Cloud Three of the Reaching Heaven State didn't compare to her.
Ying Wushuang hadn't taken the test in almost a year. How could she win?
Murong Yuan was sure Ying Wushuang hadn't used any practice equipment those days.
She had thought Ying Wushuang had chickened out when she hadn't seen the latter, and she hadn't been surprised.
"Go ahead," Jiang Chen encouraged Ying Wushuang. She went to the center of the square, where three test tools were placed.
Similar to the tests at the Sacred Institute, the test results had four levels—superior, good, satisfactory, and pass.
Murong Yuan had earned superior, superior, and good.
She was only one grade away from the top level.
Murong Yuan wasn't very satisfied with her results, but most people hadn't received even one superior, which made her proud of herself.
The first item was to test how efficiently disciples could manipulate their haloes of heaven.
A jar was filled with water. The water's surface was perfectly calm, even though there was wind blowing, as if it was frozen.
Ying Wushuang took a deep breath and slowly reached out her right hand.
The water in the jar wasn't average. It was similar to mercury, but more special.
The jar of water weighed almost six tons.
Test takers had to touch the water's surface with their palms and manipulate their haloes of heaven at the same time. The result depended on how fiercely the water stirred.
The difficulty of the test and the evaluation standard would go up automatically according to one's state and the number of haloes of heavens one had.
Ying Wushuang and Murong Yuan were in the same state, so it was easy to compare their results.
Murong Yuan still remembered the first time they had taken the test. She had earned a pass and Ying Wushuang had earned a good.
In the past year, Ying Wushuang hadn't received any help from the Hero Palace. That day, she could have earned a good, too, or maybe a fail.
Ying Wushuang felt nervous, her hands trembling. Disciples who had noticed found it funny.
"Come on. Don't waste anymore time. The results will be the same anyway," Murong Yuan urged.
Ying Wushuang calmed down when she heard that. She steeled herself and started to manipulate her halos of heaven.
The calm water started to ripple.