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Shang Yang stepped up in front of San Guo and everyone else so that she could show him what she knew. She took out her daggers before throwing them at San Guo with all her might. The daggers were quickly blocked by San Guo with his wooden stick. "At least you've got accuracy and strength behind those dagger throws. Most of those daggers were aiming at sure-kill spots on the body." San Guo threw the daggers back at Shang Yang who caught them with ease.

She had been training her reflexes for just as long as Shi Die had because she was the only other person who used her body as her main weapon of combat. With the daggers back in her hand, she slipped the extras back into several sheaths hidden on her body before using two daggers that she held and charged at San Guo.

She had no specific fighting style for her dagger usage but she focused on the basics of stabbing and slashing parts of the body that she knew would cause huge amounts of damage if it hit. Even though she was charging at San Guo and was attacking him with a flurry of attacks, it looked like a dance instead of a fight. Her hands and body were moving in a graceful manner instead of the stiff movements of those who used daggers to stab with no regard.

San Guo didn't seem too interested with Shang Yang attacking him and blocked the attacks with disinterest. After ten seconds of assault, Shang Yang backed off before putting her daggers back into their sheaths. San Guo raised an eyebrow at her, "Is that all you have to show? I'd be worried about your friends if this is all you can do. They trust you to protect them but I wouldn't trust you because of your low skill. Show me more or you'll be a lost cause to me!"

Shang Yang took a few seconds to breathe in deeply and calmed herself down to make sure that San Guo's taunts didn't affect her. Instead of going towards San Guo this time, she beckoned him to attack her this time. San Guo saw her gesturing for him to attack her. Taking his time, he leisurely strolled over to Shang Yang with his stick. Once he was in striking range, he struck with a slow yet powerful strike to see if she would let her guard down if he struck like that.

Shang Yang didn't disappoint him this time and kept her guard up. She dodged the strike by moving to the side before grasping the stick and pulling it towards her. With the pulling motion and San Guo's actions of not taking the battle seriously forced him to get pulled by the motion as well. San Guo was pulled into Shang Yang's range who immediately shot out a quick palm strike to his stomach.

San Guo blocked it with his leg and flipped backwards to get out of her range and watched her. He could feel a slight pain in the thigh which he had used to block her attack. Ignoring the pain, he went back to attacking Shang Yang. Shang Yang made multiple jabbing motions with her fingers towards several parts of his body. Most of the attacks missed or blocked but the few that hit him slowed down his movements.

San Guo examined his injuries curiously. "Your attacks are laced with Qi and are used to cripple my motions and inner Qi pathways. You need faster attacks to make sure your opponent can't dodge them. If your opponent figures out what you are doing, they'll make sure to stay as far as possible so it's best that you have a movement technique that allows you to close distance quickly."

"If your enemy knows how to remove the blocks on their Qi pathways then you should be careful. If you have a technique which allows you to observe the inner state of your opponent then use it to make sure that the opponent's Qi pathways stay blocked otherwise they may be able to launch a surprise attack at you because you thought their pathways would stay blocked."

"An experienced fighter would be able to get rid of the pathways in seconds depending on the damage to the pathways. If you manage to paralyse most of the system, then even the most experienced of fighters would be down for more than a minute trying to get rid of the paralysis. Besides that, your style is great as long as you don't meet long-ranged opponents."

"That's what your daggers are for though. I'm not sure how you'll manage to get your daggers back once you throw them, but we'll come up with an idea for that in the future so that you are prepared. If you incorporate your bare-handed martial arts to your entire body and daggers, then every single attack you make would cause your opponent to get an injury. Even if they block it."

Shang Yang took in his words and absorbed the information because it was extremely useful to her improving. She knew that she had some problems with her fighting style because she had started to run out of ideas to allow her to cause more damage or stop being disadvantaged by her opponents.

With that being said, Shang Yang stopped her attacks on San Guo before speaking. "I have nothing else to show you but I can tell you the majority of my skills. I have relatively decent Qi control and I am a rank 2 alchemist who is close to becoming a rank 3 alchemist. I'm not as close as Ye Xiu but I'm considered as a prodigy for others my age."

"I'm currently learning a movement technique that allows me to confuse my opponents whilst moving quickly. I haven't mastered the movements yet so I was unable to use it in a combat situation lest it affects my battle potential just now. I'm also learning a technique which supports my body to become more flexible and agile. Other than that, I don't have any other notable things that I know."

San Guo was nodding to her skills until she spoke the last one. He facepalmed before speaking. "I'll just go through all the basics with all four of you. If you know any of the basics I'm teaching you, either you or all of you can skip it if you do know them so that we can move on and not waste time."

The four chorused with a "Yes Sir!"

San Guo pointed to Xiao Tu to demonstrate his skills next. "You're up, Shang Yang, go on back to the rest and take a breather. Review what I've told you and watch the match to see what other pointers you can offer to your fellow friends and tell them what weaknesses they have. We'll tell each other how to improve and what their weaknesses are after everyone shows their skills and techniques. I'll also be listening to see how observant you children are."

Xiao Tu walked up towards San Guo leisurely and attacked him with a fist to the gut. San Guo was caught off-guard. "I didn't tell you to start yet!"

Xiao Tu looked at him with a cheeky smile on his face. "Sir, you should always pay attention to your surroundings and opponent. If you don't then you'll be injured heavily and you might not be able to recover from it."

San Guo's eyebrows rose up extremely high. "If that's how you want to play it then be my guest. Good job on the surprise attack anyway. Next time use a lethal attack if it's an opponent that you don't know."

Xiao Tu rushed in with his legs covered in Qi before doing a roundhouse kick at San Guo. San Guo protected his hand with Qi as well and grabbed onto Xiao Tu's leg before raising it above his head and throwing him back onto the ground.

Xiao Tu managed to recover from the attack before he hit the ground and quickly released his quarterstaff from his dimensional storage. The staff acted as his support and allowed him to stop from falling any further and using that momentum, he pushed himself back towards San Guo and used his technique that he had been practising for the past few weeks. "Falcon Aerial Kick!"

The kick was designed to be used in mid-air to attack the opponent with a vicious strike. The technique concentrated the Qi into a singular spot of the legs where the kick would impact the opponent and disable it for the rest of the fight.

San Guo's experience with fighting led him to always be aware of what his opponent was going to do. San Guo didn't need to utilise an observation technique because he had nothing that would be used to disrupt the opponent's Qi. Though he didn't have an observation technique, he was able to feel the Qi gathered up in Xiao Tu's leg and was able to react appropriately by guiding his Qi into the spot that Xiao Tu was going to hit.

Xiao Tu's kick struck San Guo but didn't do any visible damage. Not even a single bruise or scratch was on the clothes of San Guo which puzzled Xiao Tu.

San Guo smirked at Xiao Tu before pushing him away a couple of metres back. "Surprised by me taking absolutely no damage from your attack? There's a technique where you can fortify your clothes with Qi to the point that it receives all the damage from an attack for you. I'll teach the four of you the technique if you are interested in it. It comes really handy because the things you fortify such as clothes can also be made extremely sharp."

The four nodded when he asked whether they wanted to learn the technique. "The technique requires doesn't require good Qi control. It only relies on you being able to push as much Qi into the thing you are fortifying in a short period of time. Not many people know the technique because it was one I developed myself. Others have a similar ability but they only manage to have it be able to receive attacks instead of fortifying the sharpness of an object."

"This allows me to use something as simple as a leaf to cut through things." He demonstrated by taking a piece of a paper from his dimensional storage before throwing it at the walls of the room. It was stuck in the wall.

As he was demonstrating the technique, Xiao Tu took the chance for him to attack San Guo with his quarterstaff. He kept well out of range of San Guo so that he could retreat in time if San Guo retaliated. He used the more aggressive quarterstaff style that he had been learning to attack San Guo's defences.

San Guo blocked most of his attacks by fortifying his stick and using it as a sword. He parried most of the attacks, not going in for any of his own hits and let Xiao Tu do whatever he wanted. San Guo was mainly here to see what they knew and only attacked once in a while to test the defences of Xiao Tu.

He noticed that Xiao Tu's transition between two completely different styles was extremely smooth and was pleased with it. With such a smooth transition between styles. he'd be able to catch his opponent because he would start using a different attack pattern.

Xiao Tu's footwork was nothing special but he was able to utilise it to the best of his ability. Xiao Tu was planning to use all of his Qi in a single attack with a killing move that he had started to learn. He knew that the move would probably not even faze the teacher but decided to try it anyway.

Shouting the technique's name in his mind, Xiao Tu spun his quarterstaff at San Guo's ribs. 'Horse Clean Sweeping!'

San Guo stumbled back several steps but otherwise, he was unfazed. Xiao Tu stopped attacking before speaking. "That was my last attack... I guess it didn't even faze you, Sir. I'm currently on my way to become a Rank 2 Smith. I have Qi control that is decent underneath normal gravity. I learnt three quarterstaff styles to cover my weaknesses for each one and a single movement technique."

"I've also learnt a body support technique to increase my defence and strength. Besides that... my bare-handed martial arts are probably the third best out of the group since Shi Die and Shang Yang use it as their main methods of combat. I'm more of a defensive type of fighter but I don't mind going on the offence."

San Guo nodded. "Shi Die, you're up next." He pointed at Shi Die with his stick and Shi Die stepped forward.

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About the author

Soothsayer6232

  • AutumnBreeze

Bio: A typical average person writing. An avid reader of literature.

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