He heated the chemical slowly, evaporating the liquid until a small amount of powder was left in the test tube. Ye Chong carefully collected the powder, chewing a cloverfall leave that he bought specially for the work he did. However, work was not finished yet. Ye Chong went to another alchemy test tube. This one was filled with a black, sticky fluid that was bubbling.
When the black, sticky fluid was no longer bubbling, Ye Chong carefully poured out the black liquid inside. Once it was out, the black liquid looked like a rubbery solid.
Ye Chong was highly focused by now. His slender fingers moved deftly, applying just enough force for everything he did.
Soon, he produced nine similarly sized black spheres. These were the strong knockout agents that Lunatic Guan had used. They had a pretty name - Night Enchantment.
Ye Chong did not use all of the brown mistletoe nut to make Night Enchantment. He used a small amount of it to make medicine for injuries. While Rock had medical facilities, he knew from his experience on the trash planet of the importance of having first aid medication nearby. After all, it was often that immediate assistance was needed in the face of danger.
When Ye Chong walked out of the straw hut, it was already getting dark. Everyone was waiting for him outside.
Everyone was relieved to see him out. Ye Chong had worked from morning till evening, and they had waited for almost a day outside. Wang Meng had arranged for someone to bring them lunch, while Fei Si and Master Yan discussed alchemy. Fei Si did not understand the taboos between alchemists in this area, while Master Yan was interested in Fei Si’s very different principles of alchemy. They had an enjoyable conversation together.
"Looks like the young man’s succeeded! Congratulations!" Master Yan’s voice was always so soothing.
"Thank you very much!" Ye Chong bowed in gratitude. The man had lent his apparatus for him, a very generous gesture. Ye Chong produced a medicinal pill and offered it to Master Yan, "Please take it." Wang Meng watched with jealousy. After all, this was high quality medicine, a highly coveted item for many.
Master Yan did not expect Ye Chong to actually gift him with a medicinal pill. He quickly declined, "Now, this is too precious for me to accept!"
Ye Chong could not help but frowned. He did not retract his hands, still holding them out in front of Master Yan. Master Yan noticed Ye Chong’s expression and smiled gently. He did not insist further and accepted the gift. "Then I’ll help myself to it. Haha, thank you for your wonderful gift, young man."
When they were back, it was time for dinner. The banquet was prepared by Chief Wang herself. Master Yan attended the banquet as well. It was apparent that Master Yan enjoyed a high reputation in the Wang Family. Ye Chong had went without food for almost a whole day and was dreadfully hungry, so he did not speak much, but wolfed down his food without care. Both Chief Wang and Master Yan smiled when they saw how Ye Chong was eating.
From then on, Ye Chong and his group were treated even better. Chief Wang had found out that Ye Chong’s group had two alchemists. She had even asked Master Yan about it. Master Yan confirmed their abilities, which further assured Chief Wang.
Thus, Ye Chong and his group settled down at Chief Wang’s place. They had not decided what to do next, so staying there in the meantime was not a bad idea. Besides, they were very close to Rock from here. If anything happened, they could quickly return to their ship.
Ye Chong found himself enjoying a relatively easy life here. He visited Master Yan every day. Master Yan had the qualities of a teacher, and was, like Ye Chong, serious and focused about his work. Master Yan was incredibly knowledgeable in alchemy, much more than Ye Chong anticipated. Both of them frequently discussed topics in alchemy. Whenever this happened, Fei Si would listen quietly from the side, since the branch of alchemy they were discussing was completely different from what she was taught and practiced. However, she was still keen to learn, a necessary quality for professional alchemists.
Master Yan admired Fei Si’s attitude, and would often teach her new things. Fei Si benefited from their exchange, and she gradually come to understand more about the discussion between those two men. After all, she was also well learned in alchemy, and could pick up different principles easily.
Master Yan was surprised at Ye Chong’s knowledge. The young man had good memory, and a vast amount of knowledge on his fingertips. The only thing he regretted from a professional alchemist’s perspective was Ye Chong’s lack of application skills. He felt that Ye Chong did not seem to use alchemy to solve problems often. This was perplexing to him. Why would an alchemist not use alchemy to solve problems?
Unlike Ye Chong, Rui Bing continued training hard every day. While simple physical training was no longer enough to make her improve, she did not relax on her training. Her harsh training was enough to make beginners in combat ashamed of themselves. They would never have imagined that a Jie expert like her would still go through the most basic training routines. Outside of her usual training, Rui Bing would practice meditation, since Ye Chong had given her everything he had on mentalists.
Of all the newcomers, the young boy blended in best with the locals. He spent his time with the local girls everyday. All the women thought him cute, and the young boy’s affected adorable looks were indeed quite impressive. Even Chief Wang found herself fond of the young boy.
Wang Zishi walked to Rui Bing’s room. He lost his usual energetic ways, looking haggard and unlike himself. His defeat last time had struck him hard.
He stood there like a puppet for more than half an hour, his expression unreadable. Gradually, his face hardened into his usual determination.
"Wang Zishi humbly asked for my Lady to accept me as your disciple!" His resounding voice now sounded hoarse and low, but still clear as day.
Inside the room, Rui Bing sat with her eyes closed, as though she did not hear a thing.
Seeing no reaction from her part, Wang Zishi did not give up, but raised his voice slightly, "Wang Zishi humbly asked for my Lady to accept me as your disciple!"
No one could have imagined the outrage that this request would bring to the Wang Family. Wang Zishi too could not have known the consequences of his words.
The room was still silent.
Wang Zishi went down heavily to his knees, and put his head to the door. His expression was hard and resolute as he spoke again with his hoarse voice, "My Lady, please accept me as your disciple!"
Everyone panicked. The nearest Wang Family villager quickly reported this to the Chief.
Wang Zishi had always been the pride of the entire Wang Family Village. He was the idol of many young people. To think that a man like him would ask to be a disciple of an outsider! Tutelage in combat may not be as strict as for alchemists, but for a family with its own combat history, learning under a different school was extreme taboo.
The news spread like wildfire to other members of the Wang Family Village.
All the villagers stopped what they were doing and ran towards Wang Zishi. They came in numbers, as if the place was a huge magnet, drawing the crowd in.
The people around there were silent, however. They all felt a heavy pressure on their hearts. All of them knew that something big was about to happen. They all knew that Wang Zishi was having doubts about the Wang Family’s combat style. Every member of the Wang Family could feel the sharp pain of betrayal. However, they did not say a word, for this was their pride, their model, the best combat expert of the younger generation in Wang Family Village - Wang Zishi. A strong sense of humiliation permeated through them. The air was filled with tension, thick enough to cut through.
Wang Zishi was not afraid, kneeling as he was. He had thought through his decision, having had a deep struggle with himself. He knew that he would be cast aside by the Wang Family. Still he decided to do this. For him, the pursuit of mastery in combat was an ideal that he would do anything for.
Ye Chong did not know that a scandal was about to begin. At the moment, he was still discussing alchemy with Master Yan.
"You b*stard!" A middle-aged couple rushed towards Wang Zishi. The man saw Wang Zishi kneeling there, and his heart ached! This was once his most beloved student, the one he had high hopes for, but now he was kneeling before someone else’s door to ask for tuition. His heart was wrecked, and his expression turned furious.
The surrounding crowd gave way to the couple. The middle-aged man was Wang Zishi’s teacher, Wang Lu. Wang Lu was not famous in public, but he had a good reputation in the village. He was strong, but rarely showed it. His wife was also an expert of the village.
Wang Lu had a square face, with a seriousness that came naturally. His expression was even scarier now. His wife stood beside him, looking at Wang Zishi kneeling on the floor, her tears flowing down her cheeks. She knew how much effort his husband had spent on this student. They had no children, and Wang Zishi was just like their child.
"Tell me, why are you doing this?" Wang Lu did not sound angry, his voice was unusually calm. However, Mrs Wang knew that he was actually extremely furious inside.