Chapter 235: Plaguedevil's Here
"The last time I used dragonchimp grass, I could only use one blade, but this time I'm gonna put in ten!
"Firecloud pears, huh? Let's put in twenty of them!
"So, it calls for starlight leaf? It says half a leaf should do, but with an incredible pill furnace like this, that's definitely not enough. I'm putting in ten." Murmuring to himself, he continued to circle the edge of the pill furnace, tossing in one type of medicinal plant after another. After making minor adjustments here and there, he would add more plants.
Bloodflame stones poured out of his bag of holding to land underneath the pill furnace, providing intense heat. However, this was no ordinary pill furnace. Other pill furnaces would have turned bright red from the heat, but this one hardly seemed to be getting hot at all.
Seeing that, Bai Xiaochun got even more excited than before. He was slowly immersing himself in his medicine concocting, tossing more and more medicinal plants into the mix, doing nothing to prevent the medicinal strength from growing rapidly. At the same time, he was completely engrossed in making calculations regarding the medicine formula.
He felt completely and utterly satisfied. He didn't have to worry about the cost of the materials he was using, didn't have to worry about the medicinal strength increasing to unsafe levels, and didn't need to worry about losing control of the pill furnace. The only thing he worried about was how to concoct the pill.
His hair was disheveled and his eyes were bloodshot, but he felt wonderful, and more excited than he ever had been before. For seven days, he continued to add more medicinal plants to the mix. Eventually, more than half of the bag of holding had been emptied. By using the principles of mutual augmentation and suppression, Bai Xiaochun had pushed the medicinal strength to an explosive level.
Rumbling sounds began to emanate from the pill furnace, which by this point was changing from green to bright red. By now, it seemed that the furnace really wouldn't explode.
Seeing that, Bai Xiaochun threw his head back and laughed uproariously.
"A precious furnace!" he exclaimed. With that, he descended back into the medicine concocting. Based on his calculations regarding the medicine formula, he continued to add medicinal plants. As inspiration hit him, and as his train of thought proceeded, he made changes as he saw fit. Combined with the All-Creation Plants and Vegetation technique, he was gradually reaching the medicinal strength he sought.
Another five days passed, and the rumbling sounds inside of the pill furnace grew more intense. By now, the furnace was bright red, and Bai Xiaochun had added all of the medicinal plants he wanted to. He was sitting off to the side looking very content when he suddenly thought of something. Hurrying forward, he produced a drop of his own Undying Blood and added it into the furnace.
With that, he put the lid back on the furnace and locked it tight.
In that instant, any outlet for the medicinal strength was cut off, causing intense rumbling sounds to echo out, The pill furnace began to shake, and the temperature inside began to rise rapidly.
Bai Xiaochun was so impressed with the miraculous pill furnace that he didn't even think about any potential problems. As far as he was concerned, it wouldn't explode. Therefore, he decided to practice some cultivation off to the side. Occasionally, he would look over and make a few adjustments as the medicinal strength inside the pill furnace changed.
A few days later, he started to get worried. The pill furnace was now bright red, and radiating such intense heat that the area for three meters around the furnace was rippling and distorting. Cracks were even visible on the ground, snaking out from the furnace.
Bai Xiaochun swallowed, and edged away. The waves of heat battering his face caused his heart to begin to pound with fear.
"If a pill furnace this big exploded, I would lose my poor little life for sure...." Blinking, he thought back to what the Lesser Marsh Peak blood master had said. This furnace won't explode under any circumstances. Only then did he calm down a bit.
"There shouldn't be any problems, right...?" He was already starting to regret putting in so many medicinal plants. Lack of control was definitely one of his downsides. However, the pill furnace currently didn't seem to be in danger of exploding.
He waited for four more days. The furnace was still trembling, and the area of distortion had increased from three meters to thirty. The intense heat was even causing some of the nearby rock walls to slowly melt. The heat seemed to be building up with every passing moment. Bai Xiaochun was sweating up a storm, and his eyes were already wide with terror.
He thought about trying to stop the concoction process, but wasn't able to interfere. The spirit medicine inside the pill furnace was already beginning to take shape. He could only imagine how the temperature might increase now that the medicine was actually forming.
Bai Xiaochun took a long, nervous breath. He felt like he was sitting on top of a volcano that might erupt at any moment. He nervously edged backward until he was outside of the immortal's cave. Finally, he put on a lofty, enigmatic expression and walked out of the spell formation as he prepared to leave Lesser Marsh Peak.
In his opinion, Lesser Marsh Peak was now far too dangerous of a place to remain in....
On his way out, the grand elder detected him and flew over to stop him from leaving.
"Junior Brother Nightcrypt," he said politely, "where might you be headed now? Are you finished concocting our medicine?"
Bai Xiaochun was very nervous, but his expression didn't show it at all. Clasping his hands behind his back, he coolly said, "Don't worry. The concocting process is done. However, the hundred Blood Body Pills need more time to develop. In three months I'll come back personally to extract the pills from the furnace.
"In the meantime, I'll head to Nameless Peak. After all, I promised to concoct medicine for them too." Despite having been forced to scramble to come up with an excuse, Bai Xiaochun's expression was the same as ever. Lesser Marsh Peak's grand elder was still a bit suspicious, but couldn't find any fault with Bai Xiaochun's reasoning.
"Well in that case, Junior Brother Nightcrypt," he said, "I'll personally escort you all the way to Nameless Peak!" He still felt that something was off, but nevertheless, gestured for Bai Xiaochun to follow him to Nameless Peak.
Bai Xiaochun blinked a few times, then nodded and followed along. Soon he had reached the border of Nameless Peak, where the dwarf grand elder came out to meet him. Only then did Bai Xiaochun finally breathe a sigh of relief. Even as he proceed on to Nameless Peak, he turned to look back at the grand elder from Lesser Marsh Peak.
"By the way," he said, "during the next three months, no one is permitted to enter that immortal's cave. And definitely do not let anyone touch the pill furnace. The pill furnace might burst open, and if it does, you'll be responsible!" With that, he looked away and followed the dwarf onto Nameless Peak. He also made a decision to never, ever go back to Lesser Marsh Peak....
"If what the blood master of Lesser Marsh Peak said is true, then the pill furnace won't explode. The medicinal pills will eventually be completed. If that pill furnace explodes, it's not my fault!" The more he thought about it, the more he believed himself to be in the right. Feeling much better, he followed the Nameless Peak grand elder to meet the local blood master.
In accordance with the previous agreement, the blood master gave Bai Xiaochun a gargoyle. Furthermore, they had set aside an immortal's cave on the lower finger where he could concoct medicine.
By the time he went in to begin his work, word was already spreading through Nameless Peak about his arrival, leading to gasps among the cultivators there. They already felt like they were going to go mad in the coming days.
They knew about Bai Xiaochun's nickname, Plaguedevil, and had heard that the terrors which came along with his pill concocting were like tribulations wrought by patriarchs. All of them felt as though they were heading into a life or death crisis....
The Nameless Peak cultivators began to think about everything that had occurred on Middle Peak and Corpse Peak. They weren't as confident as the cultivators from Lesser Marsh Peak, and were thus soon shaking in their boots.
"Plaguedevil's here!! The terror he causes with his medicine concocting is unimaginable. Remember Zhao Shuimu from Corpse Peak? He hallucinated that he was a tuft of spirit grass! Even down to this day, he sometimes goes into a daze if he sees spirit grass...."
"That's nothing. You know Zhou Yibiao? When he sleeps at night, he sometimes yells out that he is Bai Xiaochun...."
"Actually, there are quite a few cultivators from Middle Peak who have recovered, but still haven't grown back hair, and still have occasional bouts of diarrhea. In fact, it's been on more than one occasion that I saw someone from Middle Peak get the upper hand in a fight, only to suddenly look very uncomfortable. You know what I mean, right...?"
Discussions such as these spread like wildfire. As for the cultivators who actually resided near the location where Bai Xiaochun was doing his concocting work, their scalps tingled like mad, and many of them simply left. Before long, more than half of the cultivators who normally occupied Nameless Peak had abandoned their immortal's caves and gone to stay with people they knew in the Inner Sect.
Bai Xiaochun was a bit shocked at how quiet Nameless Peak became. Not a trace of a living person could be seen anywhere near his immortal's cave. Clearing his throat, he thought to himself, "I haven't even done anything yet! What are these people being so jumpy for?
"I concocted medicine on Lesser Marsh Peak and nothing happened!" A bit annoyed, he sat down cross-legged and looked around the immortal's cave for a moment until his gaze came to rest on something in the far corner.
A black shadow floated there, emanating a cold and sinister aura.
It was one of the Nameless Peak gargoyles, which were somewhat akin to the evil ghosts that could be found on Ghostfang Peak in the Spirit Stream Sect. The main difference was that the evil ghosts weren't intelligent, and didn't grow very large either.
In contrast, gargoyles became more intelligent as they grew, and could also practice their own form of cultivation. In terms of power and strength, they were no weaker than evil ghosts, and yet, were vastly more cunning and sly.
After they reached a certain level of power, they would develop a bizarre divine ability that allowed them to possess humans and even control them. By becoming something like an inner devil, they could kill people without leaving a single mark, whereupon they would viciously drain them of their blood.
Different methods could be used to raise different types of gargoyles. One of the reasons why the Blood Stream Sect was known as a devilish sect was because of the devilish gargoyles that they raised.
Bai Xiaochun wasn't too sure about the origins of the gargoyles. That was one of the big secrets of the Blood Stream Sect. As for the gargoyle in the immortal's cave with him, it was completely ordinary, with low intelligence. It was even frightened of Bai Xiaochun's murderous aura, and didn't dare to approach him. Instead, it cowered in the corner, trembling.