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If Ning Que wanted to break out of the cliff cave where he had been imprisoned, he had to first solve the inhibition that the Headmaster had left at the entrance. He did not dream of being able to defeat the Headmaster, and could not bear to get rid of the Great Spirit in his body. Therefore, he could only choose the second method. He had to change the Great Spirit and make it get along with the Qi of Heaven and Earth in nature. He had to make sure that they were one and completely wipe out the difference between the two.
According to Origin on Primordial Qi of Nature , the Qi of Heaven and Earth in nature, the Qi in the bodies of cultivators of the Devil's Doctrine and the Great Spirit were essentially the same. However, as time pa.s.sed and due to the differences in substances, they eventually grew to have different characteristics.
Ning Que thought that backward induction would be the best method. He would use the common effects of the path of the Snow Mountain and Ocean of Qi together with that swirling aura to change the Great Spirit in his body into the tiniest molecules and change it into its original state. After that, he would use other means to gain the colors in nature so that the Great Spirit in his body was similar to the Qi of Heaven and Earth.
However, when he started experimenting, he realized that this method would not work. His many failures led him to believe that there was nothing that could fight time.
After numerous nights of thinking, he suddenly thought of something. The two books that the Headmaster had given him might not be two separate methods. Instead, they should be used together.
He began to experiment with using the no-boundary spirit of the Academy. He molded the Great Spirit into the Qi of Heaven and Earth. Just like what Chen Pipi had said, the Academy's no-boundary spirit was the fire, and his body was the pot. The Great Spirit was the ingredients in the pot.
What he needed to do, was to control the fire using the Academy's no-boundary spirit and use his wits, experience, and knowledge to season the food. He had to fry the Great Spirit in his body into a fragrant dish of Qi of Heaven and Earth.
After deducting for a while, Ning Que felt that this method would work. He began to prepare immediately. The object he chose for this simulation was one that he was most familiar with. It was the water talisman that he had understood first.
He created the purest water intent using the Fu paper and examined it seriously for a long time. Then, he carefully a.n.a.lyzed the characteristics and the minute differences in this aura before writing it down.
He did not forget to practice the Academy's no-boundary spirit at the same time.
He began the change once he had ascertained that he had a complete grasp on the characteristics and flavor of Qi of Heaven and Earth the water talisman had cultivated and the essence of the Academy's no-boundary spirit.
At twilight, he sat with crossed knees on the futon and closed his eyes slowly.
When the morning mist rolled into the cave, he opened his eyes slowly and stood up from the futon.
Psyche Power entered his body and flowed through it. Ning Que looked at the swirling aura in his body and perceived the Great Spirit in it. When he finally confirmed that the Great Spirit in his body had turned into the Qi of Heaven and Earth that carried water talismans' characteristics through the disguise of the no-boundary spirit, he could not help the look of surprise that crossed his face.
After a moment.
Ning Que wiped the blood off the corners of his lips and looked at the dancing dust particles at the entrance of the cliff cave silently. He tried to remember how he had triggered the inhibition when he tried to cross the mouth of the cave, and he began to think.
The Great Spirit in his body had already changed thanks to the disguise the Academy's no-boundary spirit provided. It had already become a type of Qi of the Heaven and Earth. Why had he still triggered the inhibition at the cliff cave?
How did the simple aura that the Headmaster had left behind discover that the aura in his body was still the Great Spirit and not the Qi of Heaven and Earth that flowed through the world?
Morning light shone through the cliff cave from the blue sky.
The bright light fell on Ning Que's eyes and he squinted.
A thought suddenly struck him.
There was no colorless light in the world, and that all lights contained more than one color. At least, the world that he was in right now was so.
Even though the naked eye cannot see it, there were other colors in the rays. It was like looking at the Haotian Divine Light that looked seemingly pure, but was actually made up of many different colored light rays.
Using the same theory, there was no singular Qi of Heaven and Earth in nature. The Qi of Heaven and Earth in the winds and clouds, trees and rocks might seem different. But in fact, since the beginning of the universe and through millennia of mixing, they all have other auras even though they kept their unique characteristics.
Only the Qi of Heaven and Earth called up by Fu paper or tactical arrays was pure.
Ning Que walked to the cliff cave and took out a Fu paper after some consideration. He touched it with his Psyche Power and ignited it into a fiery ball and allowed the wind to carry it towards the mouth of the cave.
If he had based it on his old theory, then the weak ball of fire carried the Qi of Heaven and Earth. It would not be discovered by the Headmaster's aura and would be able to get out of the cave.
There was a soft pop.
The weak ball of fire was extinguished when it reached the mouth of the cliff cave.
The inhibition at the cliff cave appeared hazily.
Ning Que stared in silence, and his face paled.
The inhibition that the Headmaster had left behind stopped not only the Great Spirit, but also other auras that were not the natural Qi of Heaven and Earth. In other words, as long as a cultivator caused a slight ripple in the Qi of Heaven and Earth through the Psyche Power in his sense of perception, he would be unable to leave the cliff cave.
Ning Que thought of how his Senior Brothers and Sisters had visited earlier and realized that none of them had entered the cliff cave. They had not even stretched out a hand through the line. That was when he understood that they had long known about this interesting fact about the Headmaster's inhibition.
He suddenly thought of something else, and he called Sangsang into the cave.
He stared at the little handmaiden who came and went freely, and felt that his thoughts were becoming even more jumbled.
If the Headmaster's inhibition targeted unnatural Psyche power or talisman power as well as the aura of cultivators from the Devil's Doctrine, why did the inhibition not react to Sangsang? Sangsang had cultivated under the Divine Priest of Light and carried at least one kind of aura in her body.
Ning Que did not think about this anymore. Instead, he continued to examine how to break out of this place.
Having determined the true meaning of the cliff cave inhibition, he realized that if the Great Spirit in his body were to be modeled as the Qi of Heaven and Earth in nature, then it would not be possible to simulate only one of them, but instead it would need to be simulated into countless kinds of Qi of Heaven and Earth. The quant.i.ty didn't matter, but they must all be present.
The problem was that there were innumerable types of Qi of Heaven and Earth in nature. Even if he had the Academy's no-boundary spirit, and the ability to observe the characteristics of various primordial Qi using talismans, how could he make the Great Spirit simulate everything?
The Great Spirit in his body was like a basket of green vegetables. Regardless of how many spices were put in, no matter how precise the control of the fire is, could he make more than 300 dishes using this basket of green vegetables?
And there was a more pressing issue.
"If I give you vegetables, can you make barbecued meat from them?"
Ning Que looked at Sangsang.
Sangsang thought for a moment before replying, "Of course not, but Mr. First brought some fresh pork over yesterday. If you want to eat braised meat, I can make you some later."
Ning Que did not wallow for too long. He immediately devoted himself to study and cracking the problem.
The question left by the Headmaster was really too difficult. There seemed to be only three correct answers. But no matter which answer you chose, you needed great courage. Some of the answers were right before your eyes, but you would only realize that there was a layer of complicated code to crack above the answers.
He could not crack the code at all in his current state and ability. The code pointed to the origins of the world and the structure of nature.
It was then, when he thought of that old woman in blue robes at the front courtyard of the Academy.
At the Mathematics Academy entrance exam, Xie Chengyun used the exhaustive testing method to obtain a near-infinite number. Ning Que had obtained an because he had found the answer just by taking one look at the question.
Ning Que very good at learning, or rather, he tested well. And exams like mathematics were the best opportunity for him to use his talent for using tricks to his advantage. That was why he always looked down on his peers who did not know how to use formulas and answering techniques but only calculated the answers honestly.
He did not have any ready-made formulas and could not find any tricks now. He could only use the method that he had once looked down upon and begin to crack the code using a most violent way.
Cracking a code violently was also known as exhaustive testing.
Exhaustive testing meant gathering all the answers and testing them one by one. As long as one had enough time and patience, he would eventually find the correct answer.
There were some minor differences between cracking the code and Ning Que's attempts to violently break the inhibition at the cliff cave. He had to find the characteristics of several kinds of Qi of Heaven and Earth, and models the Great Spirit into it. It meant that he had to crack several codes and then gather the pa.s.swords together.
This was the only way to find the final answer.
This method was violent, but beautiful. But in actuality, it was stupid and there was nothing that one could do about it.
The "exhaustive" in exhaustive testing meant to limit. It was a characteristic of this method of deduction. However, if you looked at it in another way, it also meant that the solver had already exhausted all his wits and was still unable to solve the question, which was why he had to resort to this method.
In the days that followed, Ning Que began to use the exhaustive testing method to a.n.a.lyze and observe the Qi of Heaven and Earth. He did not know how many types there were, but he was not in any rush to break out of inhibition to try it out.
Because he knew that this was an extremely voluminous project that could even be described as grand. There wouldn't be any results in 300 years, much less three months.
But he continued to try.
Because he had only given himself three months.
If he did not give his utmost best during these three months, he would have many regrets on his deathbed when he thinks back to how he had personally destroyed the Great Spirit in himself.
Ning Que became more and more silent in the cliff cave. His hair, that he had no time to groom, was scattered behind his back and he looked rather rugged. His face grew haggard, but the l.u.s.ter in his eyes grew brighter and brighter.
Chen Pipi would visit him often. He could not bear to see Ning Que torture himself any further as he looked at him. However, he could not bear to see him give up halfway even more, so he also remained silent.
The other Senior Brothers and Sisters would come by to visit too. They would bring the medicine and food they have gathered to Sangsang and have her cook them anytime to keep Ning Que's spirits up.
Tang Xiaotang cultivated under the direction of Yu Lian and suffered plenty. She complained bitterly to Sangsang when she had the opportunity to head up to the cliff and play. However, she felt somewhat ashamed when she saw Ning Que.
And the days pa.s.sed. It was now the middle of spring.