Chapter 68: The Hall of Wealth
Translator: Novel Saga Editor: - -
Shi Mu forced a smile on his face as he heard Huo Mao's words. He had consumed several thousand silvers' worth of pills for his practice in the past two months. However, he had only reached the first level of the Art of Breeding Heavenly Elephants. His growth rate was clearly slower than that of Bai Shi, Lan Feng and the other new disciples. This weighed a considerable amount of pressure on his heart.
Moreover, the wealth that he had received from Aunt Zhen and the Fifth Master was gone. However, he would need more pills to practice the second level of this art.
In addition, he had inquired about the Demon Qi which was essential to practice the Art of Breeding a Strong Evil Ape. He had come to know that the Demon Qi was sold in the Sect's market. However, its price was much more than that of the Bone-Tempering Pill.
"How could I belong to a respected family? I entered this sect purely by chance. I have nearly spent all my money. Now... I've luckily bumped into you. So, I better take your advice. The Sect provides a small ration per month. But, is there any other way a disciple can earn money in our Sect?" Shi Mu forced a smile as he asked. Something had suddenly crossed his mind. Therefore, he asked this question in a curious manner.
Huo Mao shot a surprised look at Shi Mu. It seemed as if he couldn't believe what Shi Mu had said. How could a person even think of selecting such an expensive art when he didn't have a strong financial background?
"Brother Shi, you can go to the Hall of Wealth if you wish to make money. It's located between the twelfth and the thirteenth mountain peaks. Various kinds of jobs are available there - for both... the ordinary and the janitor disciples. The jobs that can't be performed by the janitor disciples are suitable for primary disciples like you," Huo Mao replied thoughtfully after a little hesitation.
"Seriously? Is there a place like that in our Sect?" Huo Mao's words ignited a flame of happiness in Shi Mu's heart.
"Brother Shi, you must've been busy in closed-door trainings. Otherwise, new disciples like you should be aware of this place by now," Huo Mao burst-out laughing.
"Haha... maybe. I rarely go out these days. Otherwise, this information was unlikely to stay obscured." Shi Mu felt slightly embarrassed. However, he suddenly set a firm resolve in his heart - he had decided to become friends with others in order to avoid such embarrassing situations in future.
They chatted as they advanced towards the Bluestone Plaza. Then, they bid their farewells and went their separate ways.
Shi Mu spent nearly all of his remaining money to purchase the Bone-Tempering and Blood-Strengthening Pills. Then, he left for the twelfth mountain peak.
He soon arrived at a magnificent two-storied building; it was situated between the two mountain peaks.
It was noon; the sun was at its peak and shining brightly. The dark main hall was glowing due to the intense and dazzling sunlight. There were two entrance doors to the hall. These doors were several feet high and were wide open. Several black-robed ordinary and janitor disciples strolled in-and-out of these doors in endless streams.
"The Hall of Wealth"- these words were written in huge bold letters on a wooden plaque which was hung over the entrance door.
Shi Mu narrowed his eyes and gazed at the wooden plaque. Then, he walked towards the entrance door.
A cool breeze caressed his face as soon as he entered the front door of the hall. He saw a short passageway in front of him. It was lined with butter torches that had thick handles. These torches were positioned on either side of the passageway; at the interval of every ten feet. The torches' flames illuminated the passageway as they swayed in the wind.
A faint buzzing sound could be heard from the other side of the passageway. Shi Mu advanced forward without any hesitation.
He saw a turn in the passageway after he had walked a few feet. He followed it. Suddenly, his eyes were dazzled by strong lights.
He had entered a huge and spacious hall; it was several dozen feet long and twenty feet wide. Butter torches were lined along its surrounding walls. Therefore, the entire hall was as bright as daytime.
A dozen large screens could be seen in the middle of the hall. More than a hundred disciples of the Black Demon Sect were scattered around these screens. Their exclamations, murmurs, footsteps and discussions had led to the faint noise that Shi Mu had heard earlier.
Most of these screens were filled with several rows of blue and black words. The majority of these words were written in black. Only a few of them were written in blue. Shi Mu noticed the black-robed janitor disciples as they entered the main hall and wrote something on the screens with the required color brush.
Some janitor disciples held uncolored brushes in their hands. They swept these brushes on the screen from time-to-time; the black and blue words disappeared as they did that.
Shi Mu walked to an obscure corner and started to observe the situation.
Shi Mu noticed a black-robed janitor disciple as he removed a row of words from the screen. Then, he transcribed a new row of black words on the blank spot.
Four primary disciples surrounded the screen as soon as the janitor disciple finished writing. One of them shook his head as he read the line aloud.
The black-robed janitor disciple had barely put-away his brush when a primary disciple approached him. That primary disciple had a birthmark on his left cheek. Then, the two of them got engaged in a conversation.
The janitor disciple nodded and fished-out a black token from his bosom. Then, he gave the token to the primary disciple with the birthmark on his face.
The primary disciple's face beamed with excitement as he received the token. He then turned around and departed. After that, the janitor disciple took out a red-colored brush and swept it across the black words. A red-flame-shaped mark appeared on top of the black words.
Shi Mu realized that only the black words had red marks; the blue words were barely marked. A few rows of words had been marked by two red marks.
A ray of clear understanding flashed through Shi Mu's eyes as he deciphered it. He then moved towards the nearest screen; the first row of black words had attracted his eyes.
"Three thirty-year-old Holy-Wind Grass wanted. Reward - three thousand silvers. Time limit - three months."
The high reward made Shi Mu's eyes glimmer even though he didn't know anything about the Holy-Wind Grass. He moved to the next row; it was about some kind of herbal medicine. It didn't have any time limit. But, the reward was only five hundred silvers. It seemed to be some kind of a long-range mission.
He moved to the next screen when he had finished reading the first one.
Shi Mu heaved a sigh of relief after he had finished reading all the twenty rows of the black words within a few minutes.
Most of the tasks were meant for Alchemy magicians and Charm magicians. The reward offered for these tasks was better than others.
Even the most ordinary magicians were paid several thousand silvers for taking-up a simple task like maturing a field of holy plants. The rewards for slightly complex tasks which were designed for higher-level magicians were paid in holy stones.
It was a known-fact that even the most low-grade spirit stone could be easily exchanged for two-three million silvers. Moreover, these spirit stones were so rare that one would never come across them in the market. The spirit stones couldn't help a warrior in his training. However, they were priceless to a magician since they could absorb his spiritual energy and transform it into his magical power. Moreover, a number of magic circles and magic formulas couldn't be made without a spirit stone.
Shi Mu felt extremely envious of magicians as he thought about their money making abilities. He wouldn't have to worry about the money required for the practice of his Art of Breeding Heavenly Elephants and Art of Breeding Strong Evil Ape if he were a magician.
Suddenly, a thought struck his heart - Xiao Ming was a magician. He started to wonder about the possibility of practicing magical arts. After all, he had never tested his talent.
Shi Mu was aware that a few disciples in the Sect practiced both... martial and magic arts.