Chapter 26: Successful Refining
Within a secret chamber in the Xiao Clan, there were two men dressed in embroidered clothes. They were looking at a corpse that was lying on the ground. If Xiao Chen was here, he would definitely be shocked. The corpse lying on the ground could be identified as the Zhang Clan First Elder who had died in the Thunder Emperor's cave.
These two men were the most influential and part of the highest echelon in the Xiao Clan. One of them was the Xiao Clan First Elder, Xiao Qiang. The other was the reclusive Xiao Clan clan head, Xiao Xiong.
Xiao Xiong knelt down and casually flipped the corpse over, "When was he discovered?"
The corpse had already been rotting for a period of time, as proven by the faint stench of a corpse in the air. Xiao Qiang wrinkled his nose, "Ten days ago. When the guards were out on patrol, they found him. You've been in secluded training all this time, which is what made it inconvenient to bring the body over to you."
After pausing for a while, Xiao Qiang continued, "This fellow died of the Poinsettia's poison. I've asked Yulan about this and have confirmed her involvement. She has also told me about what happened."
Xiao Xiong got up and carefully listened to Xiao Qiang's depiction of recent events. When he heard about that mysterious Martial Saint in blue, his expression had a slight change, but it recovered almost immediately. After listening to the whole thing, there seemed to be a teasing expression on his face, "This old fellow was always so hung up on going against us, but this time, he died at the hands of a junior in the Martial Master realm. I wonder how he felt about that?"
Xiao Qiang laughed with second-hand embarrassment. He did not continue Xiao Xiong's topic but instead asked with concern in his voice, "Are you not worried at all about that mysterious Martial Saint coming to Mohe City?"
Xiao Xiong's expression changed greatly as he revealed a bitter smile, "Ever since the Xiao Clan established itself in this tiny Mohe City, those fallen supreme clans did not manage to survive a day past that. Those elders of the Xiao Clan believed that we have benefitted, so what is the point of me worrying?"
"If these dancing clowns want to target my Xiao Clan, as long as I, Xiao Xiong, still have a breath in me, even if I turn into ash, I will take my revenge." With the change in topic, Xiao Xiong's eyes had a resolute gleam that could easily inspire a sense of conviction in people.
Xiao Qiang naturally understood what Xiao Xiong meant by his words. Ever since he became the First Elder, he knew how strong the enemies of the Xiao Clan had been back then. It had not been easy for the Xiao Clan to survive till today. At the end of the day, their enemies now compared to then were not even worth mentioning in the same breath.
"From Yulan's description, the Martial Spirit of the person in blue should be a rock. Within Qizi County, there is only one Martial Saint with this Martial Spirit. The Third Elder of Qinghe City's Leng Clan.
The Leng Clan, they were fully deserving of their title as the number one clan in all of Qizi County. With the backing of the Misty Sword Sect, they had expanded very rapidly in the past few years, and their influence had reached all the way to Heishui City, a city very close to Mohe City. It made sense if they allied with the Zhang Clan to deal with the Xiao Clan.
Xiao Xiong did not seem interested in these news; without changing his facial expression, he spoke with mild bemusement: "All they want is our Xiao Clan's Seven Horn Mountain. The Promise of Ten Years was established by the City Lord of Mohe City, so even if the Leng Clan had the Misty Sword Sect backing them, they would not dare to make any careless moves. How is the thing that I asked you to investigate in the day?"
"The Martial Spirit of the Second Young Master is indeed an extremely strange purple fire that is relatively tyrannical." Although Xiao Qiang had his suspicions regarding Xiao Xiong's overt concern about Xiao Chen's Martial Spirit, he still spoke truthfully about what he knew.
Xiao Xiong revealed a trace of a relaxed expression, "Then has he agreed to participate in the Promise of Ten Years?"
Seeing Xiao Xiong ask this question, Xiao Qiang's usually stern face revealed a trace of a relaxed smile, "He agreed. This fellow is very crafty. He actually managed to rip off a Spirit Weapon from me."
At this moment, Xiao Chen, who was still in Bao`er's room, naturally did not know that the two greatest authorities in the Xiao Clan were talking about him.
After he took his leave from Bao`er's room, Xiao Chen put his emotions in check and began to proceed with the second attempt at refining the Fasting Pill. After the experience from the first time, Xiao Chen was able to refine this smoothly and easily.
Without any mishaps, after two hours, the Fasting Pill successfully formed its shape and solidified. In one breath, Xiao Chen had placed the pill back in the Azure Dragon medicinal cauldron. After simmering for ten minutes, Xiao Chen extinguished the Purple Thunder True Fire.
There was a flash of brilliance as a glowing pill came out from the other dragon head with a 'plop', falling into the bottle that Xiao Chen had prepared earlier.
Wiping away the sweat dotting his forehead, Xiao Chen revealed a smile laced with a trace of contentment. This Fasting Pill was finally a success. However, this was only just the beginning. The Fasting Pill may be mystical, but it had no practical uses for cultivating. He only made it to familiarize himself with the art of refining medicines.
Next, he intended to refine the Essence Nurturing Pill and Qi Returning Pill. These were the pills that he wanted to have.
As for the Qi Returning Pill, after consuming it, the Spiritual Energy one has exhausted will begin to rapidly recover. Its effects were similar to the Essence Returning Pill of the Tianwu Continent. If a situation arises where a cultivator has exhausted all of his Essence or have had a great expenditure in Essence, the perk in having a pill to recover Essence, regardless of it being in battle or refining medicines, would yield tremendous help in such clutch situations.
As for the Essence Nurturing Pill, it was of even greater use. It could increase the cultivation speed of a low realm cultivator. This was something that Xiao Chen needed in order to quickly cultivate to the 2nd layer of the Purple Thunder Divine Incantation. Similar pills in the Tianwu Continent would require at least a grade five alchemist to refine.
If Xiao Chen did not have the Compendium of Cultivation, and the fact that the recipe and alchemy methods were different from this world, let alone with his current cultivation realm, he would have no way to refine a pill like this.
However, Xiao Chen was not in a rush to make these two pills. Instead, he continued to refine the Fasting Pill. In the Compendium of Cultivation, these two pills were of similar grades to the Fasting Pill, but the difficulty in refining them was much greater. If he attempted to refine one of them without careful consideration, his chance of failure would be enormous. Furthermore, Xiao Chen was only able to get Bao`er to purchase one set of ingredients for these two pills, as he did not have enough money.
Yes, he indeed did not have enough money. Every month, Xiao Chen would receive an allowance of a thousand silver taels from the Xiao Clan. This was sufficient to purchase plenty of materials for the Fasting Pills. However, it would be hard to purchase large amounts of materials for the Qi Returning Pill and Essence Nurturing Pill. If he factored in the rate of failure, then the amount of money needed would essentially be multiplied.
With regards to his lack of money, Xiao Chen had already thought of a solution and therefore did not feel too worried about it. His gaze was currently fixed on the Fasting Pill within that jade bottle. The most important thing now was improving his familiarity with alchemy.
Taking out the ingredients as outlined in the recipe for the Fasting Pill, Xiao Chen began to tirelessly refine one after the other. Time flew by without him realizing it; and only when his mind was completely exhausted did he cease refining the pills.
Glancing towards the jade bottle filled with Fasting Pills, Xiao Chen revealed a contented smile. This bottle had twenty Fasting Pills in it. With all the continuous practice, he had grown more and more familiar with the intricacies of alchemy. He had only failed once as a result of a mistake.
Sitting down cross-legged, he observed his Dantian and circulated the Purple Thunder Divine Incantation. Xiao Chen began to slowly recover the exhausted Essence. Threads of Essence in the room now saturated with a medicinal fragrance slowly entered his body before finally merging with the three white clouds beside the Azure Dragon Martial Spirit.
While in cultivation, Xiao Chen lost all concept of time. And when he opened his eyes once again, the sky was bright already. He stretched his body, causing his stiff joints to pop into place with a cracking sound. His body felt incomparably relaxed as, in fact, the exhaustion from the previous night had completely vanished.
"Young Master, can I come in? I have brought water for you to wash up with." Bao`er's voice called out from outside the door.
Xiao Chen hurriedly got up to open the door. Seeing Bao`er's face filled with a smile, Xiao Chen felt relieved. It seems that Bao`er had already forgiven him for last night's matter.
"Ai! Young Master, your room is very fragrant."
As he had refined a large batch of Fasting Pills the previous night, the dense medicinal fragrance had not completely dissipated yet. The invigorating fragrance wafted over Bao'er, placating her nerves and improving her mood with a single whiff.
As for the fact that he was able to refine medicines, Bao`er already knew about it last night. It was now impossible to hide it from her, so he might as well just spill the beans, "I was refining medicines last night. That's why the room is very fragrant. I temporarily do not want to let others know that I can refine medicines, so can Bao`er help me keep this secret?"
Although refining medicine was not a big deal, letting people know about it would undoubtedly attract a lot of trouble. He could at present only hoped that Bao'er was trustworthy enough to keep his secret. After all, towards this fourteen-year-old or fifteen-year-old girl, he did not have the heart to do something such as permanently silencing her.
Bao`er nodded her head very seriously, "Second Young Master, don't worry, Bao`er will not tell anyone else. Young Master probably has not washed your face yet, let Bao`er help you with it."
After Bao`er had laid down her solemn promise, she picked up a wet cloth very naturally and brought it up to Xiao Chen's face. Having the advantage in how cultivation promoted early growth spurts, Xiao Chen towered over Bao'er and made it difficult for her to reach him. Even after Bao`er stretched her hand out, she had to tip-toe.
Seeing Bao`er struggle amused Xiao Chen. He stretched his hand out and grabbed her hand and took the cloth from her, "This Young Master still has hands and feet. This much I can do myself, so you don't have to do this in the future."
After her hands were grabbed, Bao`er's face went red as she asked in a soft voice, "Then what else can Bao`er do?"
Seeing the lovable Bao`er mutter in a soft voice, Xiao Chen felt a ripple in his heart... an impulse to 'attack' her filled his veins with a throb.
Xiao Chen shook his head vigorously before regaining his wits. He noticed the messy bed, "Help me tidy the bed up, and then later come and clean the room up, and that will be it."
Bao`er answered with an 'En' and proceeded to joyfully run over. As long as she had something to do, she would be happy.
After washing his face, Xiao Chen held and observed the jade bottle filled with the Fasting Pills, "I will be going into the city later. When you are done with all these, you can spend some time doing whatever you want. There is no need to stay here."
"Ok!" Bao`er answered somewhat helplessly. Earlier, she was afraid that Xiao Chen would want her to do something shameless, but now she knew that Xiao Chen was not that kind of person. Gradually, a feeling of having nothing to do began to overcome her.
Leaving the Xiao Residence, Xiao Chen found an isolated area and wore a loose black cloak, covering up his entire body before heading towards Mohe City in a hurry.