1355 I Like The Number Eigh
While fighting against Sword8, Lin Huang was almost continuously dominated by her in battle.
Sword8 seemed small and harmless, but once she was in battle mode, it was as if she were a whole other person. She transformed into someone extremely ferocious, focused, and even intelligent.
Indeed, she was not only very skilled at using brute force but in battle mode, she was also very good at analysis. She could decipher most of Lin Huang's moves. Even the few rare moves that she was unable to crack, she could always find a way to counter them when Lin Huang used them for the second or third time.
Lin Huang was practically certain that of all the sword cultivators he had encountered in so many years, Sword8 was the most terrifying in terms of natural talent and potential.
As for why she was ranked eighth, Lin Huang speculated there might be two reasons.
One possibility was because she used a broken sword, and the weapon had no advantage compared to Great Heaven's other bodyguards. The other possibility might be related to her mentality. To a certain extent, Sword8's mentality was still immature, and her mind seemed to have stayed at the developmental level of a small child.
Great Heaven's bodyguards were ranked on their overall abilities, and mentality was one part of the whole package. Sword8 was very much not up to par on this particular point, which might have also contributed to why her overall abilities were only ranked in eighth place.
Previously when Lin Huang and Sword10's practice had ended, Sword10 had also mentioned that Lin Huang's overall ability should be sufficient to get him past all the stages below Sword3.
After encountering Sword9, Lin Huang had made a breakthrough in his Seraphic Speed divine ability and his rapid speed sword skill had skyrocketed, improving his overall strength.
Logically speaking, it was unlikely that he would encounter any great obstacles for the stages below Sword3.
However, Sword8's performance really surprised Lin Huang right from the start because he was overwhelmed in practically all aspects. Except for his slight advantage in rapid speed, Sword8 was stronger than Lin Huang in almost all other aspects of Sword Dao.
After regaining his equilibrium though, Lin Huang had worked out why Sword10 had not mentioned anything about Sword8.
Although Sword8 was extremely powerful, her temperament was such that it was very likely she would have suppressed her true abilities and let all the participants pass her level.
Lin Huang, however, had now encountered a Sword8 who had unleashed her full abilities at his request; she was also a powerhouse whose abilities might even exceed Sword4.
Lin Huang and Sword8's practice sessions passed by day after day.
Under the tremendous pressure exerted by Sword8, Lin Huang's use and expansion of the different Sword Dao paths such as rapid speed, force-type, and ultimate dao-type improved daily.
It took him less than a week to complete in-depth integration of different Sword Dao types. His rapid speed sword skill was no longer purely rapid speed, and his force-type was no longer merely force-type—he could now command a combination of various types at will.
Lin Huang could now use ultimate dao-type sword skills with force-type and could also perfectly switch between force-type and rapid speed. He had also learned how to perfectly integrate rapid speed sword moves with force-type, and ultimate dao-type (in reality, the different approaches in the cultivation of various Sword Dao paths were not completely independent).
On the fourteenth day of practice with Sword8, Lin Huang finally elevated his grasp of the lightning elemental attribute, and he mastered a force-type Lightning Elemental Enlightenment—Heaven's Punishment.
Then again, perhaps there might just have been too much pressure exerted on his force-type.
On the thirty-third day, Lin Huang's Superhuman Strength divine ability finally transformed into the Superhuman Strength God Rule.
At this point, Lin Huang's force-type abilities had finally advanced to the same level as Sword8.
His force-type was on par with Sword8, and his rapid speed was slightly stronger than hers. This elevated Lin Huang's overall ability to Sword8's standard.
Although Sword8 still held a strong advantage in ultimate dao-type, Lin Huang's Sword Dao was more powerful, which made up for his disparity in that path.
Lin Huang, who had been relying on the Seraphic Speed God Rule to contend with Sword8, finally had the ability to confront her head-on.
Lin Huang had initially thought he would make up for his shortcomings in ultimate dao-type by utilizing the pressure brought about by Sword8's ultimate dao-type.
He did not expect that she would walk out on him after less than a day of practice.
"I don't want to play anymore. It's no fun now." All this while Sword8 had been happy to serve as a sparring partner because battles with Lin Huang were very comfortable.
At first, she had completely dominated Lin Huang in combat; later on, his abilities had improved but the pleasure of battle was still there. Now, however, Lin Huang wanted to practice his new sword skills with her, and his initial lack of proficiency with many of these new skills had led to a decline in the overall smoothness of battle. Sword8 did not think that there was any fun in this sort of fight, so she abandoned her role right away.
Lin Huang smiled and nodded; he did not say much.
After all, this girl had practiced with him for more than 30 days and had even helped him to gain two breakthroughs in force-type that upgraded his overall ability by an entire level. This 'sparring partner' had definitely filled the role very satisfactorily; there was no need to demand anything further.
"Then we'll stop playing," Lin Huang said as he sheathed his sword. His gaze softened as he looked at Sword8. "Thank you, lass!"
"What are you thanking me for? I should be the one thanking you!" Sword8 also put her sword away and smiled at Lin Huang. "Thank you for playing with me. I haven't had such a good time in ages."
"I have a question; you don't have to answer if you don't want to." Before he left, Lin Huang suddenly remembered one of his doubts. "With your abilities, you should be ranked higher among Great Heaven's bodyguards, shouldn't you? Why are you ranked eighth?"
"Because I like the number eight. I told Lord Swordmaster that I wanted the name Sword8 and no one was allowed to try and take it from me. Lord Swordmaster agreed." Sword8's expression was entirely matter-of-fact and she did not seem to see anything wrong with her approach.
"Oh, so that's what it is..." Only then did Lin Huang realize he had been over-thinking things previously.
"What about your abilities then? Which rank should you actually be?" Lin Huang asked again.
"I can't defeat Big Brother Sword1, and I can't defeat Bunny. I've beaten Big Nose a few times, but I know he deliberately let me win. The rest can't beat me," Sword8 thought about it and gave her answer.
"Who is Bunny? Is that Sword2? Big Nose is Sword3?" Lin Huang asked curiously.
"Oh no, I'm done for now! I promised Bunny that I wouldn't say their nicknames in front of outsiders..." After Sword8 heard Lin Huang's inquiry, she realized she had said something that she should not have, and hastily covered her mouth.
"What nicknames? I didn't hear anything." Lin Huang smiled.
"Yes, you can tell them that you didn't hear anything!" Sword8 nodded quickly.
"Lass, you take good care. I'll go on to the next stage now," Lin Huang called to Sword8 and turned to leave, but he stopped in his tracks when he heard Sword8's shout.
"Wait a minute!"
"Is there anything else?" Lin Huang asked, rather surprised.
"Your overall abilities are okay, but your ultimate dao-type is still a little weak. I'll give you some sword skills as a present," Sword8 said and skipped in front of Lin Huang.
She then stood on tiptoe, reaching toward his forehead to tap the tip of her finger against it.
A massive amount of Sword Dao Inheritances instantly flooded Lin Huang's brain.
After Sword8 pulled her hand back, Lin Huang briefly probed the information that she had transmitted and immediately widened his eyes.
Sword8 had transmitted had more than 1.6 million sword skills, which was twice the inheritance of Sword10!
The key thing was that she had not only mastered a large number of sword skills, but she had also honed her use and expansion of sword skills far beyond Sword10. No wonder this girl was terrifyingly powerful in ultimate dao-type.
"Thank you!" Lin Huang thanked her again.
"You're welcome. If you have a chance in the future, just come and play with me." Sword8,who had retreated over ten meters away, waved at Lin Huang.
"If there is a chance, I definitely will!" Lin Huang nodded slightly. Only then did he turn and walk in the direction of the palace door.