Song Qingshu’s face turned red. “What’s so special about Wudang Pai’s martial art?” he called out, “Look carefully!” Suddenly his left hand turned into a hook in front of Zhang Bo Longtou’s eyes. Revolving to the left and turning to the right, he launched seven, eight different styles. In a surprise movement, his right hand thrust forward and ‘stab!’ His five fingers pierced Zhang Bo Longtou’s forehead.
The spectators were stunned. They only see Song Qingshu’s fingers dripping with blood, while Zhang Bo Longtou fell backwards. It was obvious that he was dead.
With a cold laugh Song Qingshu said, “Does Wudang Pai have this kind of martial art?”
The crowd of heroes called out in alarm. Eight people from the Beggar Clan rushed forward. Two quickly grabbed Zhang Bo Longtou’s body, while the other six attacked Song Qingshu. These six were Beggar Clan’s masters; among them, four were brandishing their weapons, so that in a short moment Song Qingshu was surrounded by dangers.
A big and fat monk behind Reverend Kong Zhi loudly shouted, “The Beggar Clan’s gentlemen take advantage of a solitary man; aren’t you breaching today’s heroes assembly rule?”
Zhi Fa Zhanglao called out, “Brothers, get back. Let me avenge Zhang Bo Longtou.”
The Beggar Clan disciples leaped backward. They took Zhang Bo Longtou’s body back to their wooden shelter. With angry look on their faces, they stared at Song Qingshu menacingly.
The heroes watching on the side thought, “Although it was agreed that in this martial art competition death is not a big deal, but this surname Song’s hands are too heavy and ruthless.”
At this moment, Zhang Wuji was recalling the injury on Zhao Min’s shoulder, which was from a five-finger claw; and then that night at the thatched hut, the way Du Baidang and Yi Sanniang’s corpses lying on the floor. With a trembling voice he asked, “Yang Zuo Shi, where did Emei Pai get this evil martial art from?”
Yang Xiao shook his head. “Subordinate has never seen this kind or martial art,” he said, “However, Emei Pai’s founder Guo Nuxia was known as ‘Xiao Dong Xie’ [young eastern heretic] so I wouldn’t be surprised if 30% of her martial art skill was heretical.”
While the two of them were talking, Song Qingshu has started fighting Zhi Fa Zhanglao. Zhi Fa Zhanglao was a thin and small man, and extremely agile. His ten fingers were like a hook or an awl, attacking Song Qingshu with ‘mo zhua gong’ [devil claw skill]. It looked like he was very adept in using his fingers, and wanted to poke five holes on top of Song Qingshu’s head to avenge Zhang Bo Longtou’s death.
At first, Song Qingshu was still using the ‘Jin Ding Mian Zhang’ to parry the opponent. After fighting for a while, Zhi Fa Zhanglao roared, “Little dog thief!” The five fingers of his left hand had already touched Song Qingshu’s forehead. Just a little bit more strength, the fingers would have pierced Song Qingshu. Song Qingshu stretched out his right hand, and ‘stab!’ his five fingers entered Zhi Fa Zhanglao’s throat. Zhi Fa Zhanglao fell forward. His left hand had not lost its strength that it penetrated the surface of the earth. Blood spread out on the ground. He stopped breathing at once.
Zhou Zhiruo made a signal with her hand. Eight Emei Pai female disciples, each with a sword in her hand, jumped forward and with two on each side, they stood with their backs facing in, on the front, rear, left and right, around Song Qingshu. There would be a chaotic battle if the Beggar Clan people rushed forward to attack again.
With a loud and clear voice, one of the old monks of Damo Hall said, “Luohan Hall’s thirty-six disciples, obey the order!” His palms clapped three times, thirty six Shaolin monks wearing yellow robes came out. Eighteen of them held Buddhist staves, while the other eighteen brandished sabers. They quickly spread out around the field. They stood in what looked like a formation, yet it was not exactly a formation. However, all strategic places were guarded.
The old monk said, “Receive Kong Zhi Shishu’s [martial (younger) uncle] order: the thirty six Luohan Hall disciples are to enforce the great hero assembly’s rules. If there are some people who rely on number to bully an individual, they are to be treated as Wulin world’s public enemy. We, Shaolin Temple, must not shame ourselves as the host. We must maintain the justice. Thirty six disciples to look carefully; regardless who break the rules, kill him on the spot. Do not show any mercy.”
The thirty six disciples loudly voiced their compliance. With ferocious stare they fixed their gaze to the center of the field. With the Emei Pai guarding Song Qingshu, and Shaolin Pai guarding on the side, the Beggar Clan disciples did not dare to make any rash moves even though they were grieved and furious. They only shouted and cursed while taking Zhi Fa Zhanglao’s body back to their shelter.
“Ku Dashi,” in a low voice Zhao Min said to Fan Yao, “I didn’t expect Emei Pai still have this deadly stance. At the Wan An Temple, Mie Jue Shitai would rather die than showing off her martial art. Perhaps this is the reason.”
Fan Yao shook his head without saying anything. He was deep in thought to find a way to break this particular stance. After staring blankly for half a day, he suddenly approached Zhang Wuji.
“Jiaozhu,” he said, “Subordinate wants to consult with you a martial art stance.” With his palms pressed on the table, he stretched out his left hand index finger, and then his right hand index finger, one after another. With an incredible nimbleness he moved the fingers continuously seven times. And then with a low voice said, “My arms will attack successively this way. I only need to coil around this boy’s arm, and exert my internal energy to break his arm joint. With a broken arm, even if his fingers were fiercer, he would not be able to execute his move.”
Zhang Wuji also moved around his fingers on the table. Left hooked, right lifted. “Be careful not to let his fingers pierce your arms,” he said.
Fan Yao nodded his agreement. He said, “I will use ‘qin na shou’ [grab and seize, grappling technique] to grab his wrist, and then ‘shiba lu yuanyang lian huan tui’ [eighteen way/method mandarin ducks chain legs (continuous kicking)] to kick the lower part of his body].”
Zhang Wuji said, “Attack him ferociously with eighty one stances, don’t give him any opportunity to take a breather.”
These two people’s four fingers moved backward and forward, attacked and defended with exceptional speed. Fan Yao suddenly smiled, “Jiaozhu’s attacks are too marvelous. I don’t think this boy has this kind of power. His martial art is limited. He won’t be able to unleash the full potential of these several stances.”
Zhang Wuji also showed a faint smile and said, “If he cannot unleash the full potential of these three stances, then Fan You Shi, you have already won.” His left index finger made two circles, right index fingers suddenly thrust out from within the circles and hooked Fan Yao’s finger. He smiled slightly without saying anything.