A spicy dish...
While holding the Golden Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife, Bu Fang unconsciously began to play with it.
Spiciness was actually a flavor that could not be replaced. There were many famous delicacies that could not exist without their spicy flavor. Since the theme of the next day's dish was spiciness, Bu Fang began to nurse a headache as he considered what dish he could make.
To start with, whatever dish he made would have to be visually captivating, and the aroma produced during the cooking process would have to be thick. This was the only way to give his dish a lasting captivating effect, making it unforgettable.
Only such dishes would better spread Cloud Mist Restaurant's fame and increase its reputation.
After all, the impromptu mission the system had given him was to increase the fame of the Cloud Mist Restaurant, and the Magical Hand Conference seemed like the best way to achieve that. However, what place in this conference would the system require him to take in order to complete the mission? Or would he have to come in first place and win the conference?
Bu Fang stopped for a moment, then he shook his head sideways. He would just go with the flow; whenever the impromptu mission was completed, the system would naturally let him know.
With a twirl of the Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife, Bu Fang's aura instantly changed. He seemed to have become an overlord, which was evident from the chilling, sharp glint in his eyes.
Shrimpy was lying on top of the counter when the Golden Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife proceeded to hover over it. It looked up at the knife and blinked its compound eyes at Bu Fang in confusion.
"Nevermind..." Bu Fang moved his mouth. He stored the Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife. It was not the time to panic over what was the Overlord thirteen blades.
Bu Fang picked Shrimpy up and placed it back on his shoulders, then he began to pace around the kitchen, thinking about the dish he'd prepare the next day.
Suddenly, his eyes lit up, and he thumped his fists in the air; he had finally figured out what to cook.
The next morning.
Bu Fang woke up early and went to the kitchen. He made Sweet 'n' Sour Ribs for Blacky and Dragon Blood Rice for Nethery. Even after they had eaten, the fragrances of both dishes lingered in the restaurant.
Bu Fang opened his store for business and worked for a while. Cheering erupted from the customers as he closed up the restaurant later on. Then, he left for the Heavenly Mist City's central plaza.
The last elimination round would be held on that day, and from the results of the round, the top hundred in the Magical Hand Conference would be chosen; it was they who would take part in the semi-finals.
The semi-finals and the elimination rounds were totally different.
For the semi-finals, various Pill tower powerhouses from Pill Palace's three biggest cities would put together a Projection Array, which would broadcast the competition to all corners of various big cities. That would allow the competition to be transmitted throughout the Pill Palace.
This was the reason why the Magical Hand Conference was such an important activity.
Rumors had it that the most powerful people in the Hidden Dragon Continent were coming to the Pill Palace to watch the competition. They were said to be interested in only the top 50 alchemists in the Magical Hand Conference. Only these alchemists could be considered the real geniuses, who had unlimited potentials. These alchemists were all sort after by every big power.
Therefore, the Magical Hand Conference was the event for alchemists to get famous.
Bu Fang carried the Cloud Mist Restaurant's sign with him as he slowly made his way to the central plaza. On the way there, many people recognized him. He was the only chef that had managed to enter the third round of eliminations; his fame was not something to be looked down on.
He was also the public enemy of every alchemist.
As long as there were rounds which he would be participating in, it was bound to be explosions. The instant many alchemists heard Bu Fang's name, they shivered in fright. They were all scared that in the third round, they would encounter the disaster that was Bu Fang.
However, none of that affected Bu Fang at all.
When he arrived at the central plaza, he learned that this time he was to compete in the first arena.
The first arena? Really?
Did that mean there would be more people watching than in other arenas?
The system had tasked him with spreading the fame of the Cloud Mist Restaurant, so if he was to compete in an arena that had a larger audience, it would benefit him greatly, shortening the time needed to complete the system's impromptu mission.
However, he was soon to be disappointed. The position of an arena did not influence the number of people watching it; in this regard, the first arena was no different from the other arenas.
Although that was a pity, Bu Fang didn't really care about it too much.
As more time passed, more people ventured into the central plaza, and it became more crowded. There was a large number of people concerned about the third round of the elimination section. Hence, a large crowd of people gathered in front of every arena's stage.
Bu Fang was the first one to walk onto the stage. He was easily recognizable because of the huge sign that he carried with him.
When word got out that he was to compete in the first arena, many people rushed over to watch.
They found Bu Fang, the chef who had appeared out of nowhere, really interesting. They also believed that as long as Bu Fang was on stage, something interesting was bound to happen, unlike other stages that only had alchemists competing.
For example... collective furnace explosions.
After taking part in so many competitions, Bu Fang was already famous; at this stage of the Magical Hand Conference, he was widely recognized by the competition alchemists and the audience.
Although he had not attracted the attention of top genius alchemists, he was, however, a terrifying existence to the normal alchemists participating in the elimination rounds. To them, he was menacing and not someone they could underestimate.
The judge to oversee the first arena was the chief judge from the previous day. He gazed at Bu Fang and licked his lips. The steamed crab from the previous day was unforgettable.
He suddenly felt that being Bu Fang's judge was not such a bad thing; at least, he would get to eat a lot of delicacies.
What would he be cooking this time?
Bu Fang placed the heavy sign onto the bronze platform, and the alchemists looked over at him with caution.
It's him; it's definitely him!
That was the chef that had made other alchemists blow up their furnaces.
The surrounding alchemists watched him with cold gazes, which were brimming with killing intent! In this round, they would definitely cause the chef to fail and get knocked out of the Magical Hand Conference!
The chief judge looked on with interest at Bu Fang, who had become the focus of the audience. Although he had enjoyed Bu Fang's dishes, he did not mind if the chef was knocked out of the conference in this round; that would not be a bad thing.
After all, the Magical Hand Conference was a stage for alchemists. A chef had no place there; his presence would only make people feel weird.
If this chef managed to enter into the top fifty, the Pill Palace would become the laughing stock of the entire Hidden Dragon Continent. In a competition for professional alchemists, a chef was able to make it into the top fifty... Wouldn't this be the same as saying that the alchemists were no match for a chef?
"This is the third round of the elimination section. It is also the key to deciding whether you make it to the semifinals. The fact that you made it to this round means that your alchemy skills are very good. Nevertheless, competitions need to produce results, no matter what. Hence, some of you will qualify, and others will fail to advance. Therefore, I hope you all will display your true level of skill in this round...
"Competition rules: those who manage to produce a top ninth-grade elixir, in an hour, will qualify. However, keep in mind that there are only ten spots; first come, first serve," the chief judge reminded them.
The alchemists became serious. After all, the third round of the elimination section was obviously different from the previous rounds. Those who had made it to this round were not to be underestimated, so none of them dared to belittle each other.
Bu Fang also nodded seriously. The dish he would be making, this time around, was no easy feat; thus, it was time for him to get serious.
The moment the chief judge finished the announcement, the competition began.
Bu Fang began to move as well.
The sound of rain was heard, and moments later, everyone looked at Bu Fang's bronze platform in shock. A mountain of red chilies had appeared atop it. These chilies were slightly curved and shiny.
It did not end there, however. The sound of heavy downpour reverberated around again, and this time, a mountain of green chilies could also be seen on the bronze platform.
Everyone was surprised. What was the chef going to cook this time?
Bu Fang, however, ignored the gazes. With a wave of his hand, the Golden Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife began to spin. As it moved on its trajectory, it twinkled. The knife was like a shooting star streaking through the pitch-dark night sky.
The audience below the stage exclaimed in awe!
What was he doing?
So many chilies... Was he planning to pierce through the sky?!
When the alchemists on stage saw the mountains of chilies, their faces instantly turned black, and they suddenly had bad premonitions!
The chief judge was also shocked.
Chilli? Could today's dish have something to do with chili...? Even if that was so, wasn't that amount of chilies a bit too much? Was he really going for the sky?
Chop chop chop chop chop!
However, Bu Fang did not pay any heed to their curiosity. The rhythmic sound of a kitchen knife hitting a cutting board was clearly audible to everyone present. The Golden Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife was barely visible; the speed at which it chopped shocked everyone.
That speed... was unreasonable!
That knife skill... could be a godly skill itself!
Chop chop chop chop chop!
Soon, the mountains of chilies were completely chopped into smaller pieces by Bu Fang, and they were loaded onto the plate.
The chopped red chili and green chili were separated into two stacks.
It was at this moment that the alchemists looked away and carefully began to refine their elixirs.
Many alchemists had already gained some experience from watching previous rounds. They sealed their nostrils, and used only their mouths to breathe, taking small breaths at a time. By doing so, they would not be affected by any aroma.
This was a strategy that the alchemists had jointly developed, in order to counter their common enemy.
Today, Bu Fang was their enemy.
They were very confident in this strategy. The nose was very sensitive to smells, and this was especially so for alchemists. Because of this sensitivity, alchemists had severe reactions to fragrances. This left them easily affected and vulnerable.
Using their mouths to breath, instead of their noses, would mitigate the effect that fragrance had on them to its lowest. This way, they would not be affected by any fragrances, which would have resulted in them blowing up their furnaces.
This time around, they had come to cause trouble; they would definitely cause Bu Fang to fail this round.
Alchemic fires were lit, and the entire stage became hot in an instant.
All kinds of spirit herbs were taken out. Their smell lingered as the herbs themselves were tossed into furnaces, and were eventually scorched into various liquids, all the while suspended in mid-air.
Bu Fang had no idea what these alchemists had planned. After chopping the chilies finely, he first placed them into separate bowls. He added some seasoning into each bowl, mixed them, and left them to marinate for a while.
While waiting, Bu Fang took out a huge item from the system's storage space.
It was a fish the size of a human being. When he took it out, he tossed it onto the bronze platform, causing the entire arena to tremble.
The chief judge and the audience members were surprised.
This chef... What did he intend to do?
On the previous day, he cooked crabs; today, would he be cooking fish? Did he plan to make all those dishes again, along with the fish, making a seafood buffet?
Look at that fat and plump fish; it must have a lot of meat. It could definitely be used to make a delicacy.
However, Bu Fang's next move shocked them.
Bu Fang raised the Golden Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife and infused his true energy into it. This caused the Golden Dragon Bone Kitchen Knife to emit out a bright light and expand in size, becoming huge.
With a slash, Bu Fang instantly separated the fish's head from its body.
To the continued shock of everyone, Bu Fang put away the fish's body, which was rich in plump fish meat, leaving the enormous fish head behind.
Why leave behind the fish's head, which only had a little meat, and not its body? What was he doing?
Everyone felt lost.