There were not many words on the letter, but Junior Leopard's heart kept pounding: "Messystar Stone, Sea Bile, Wind Bead!"
Those nine words made Junior Leopard's heart beat more quickly because all three of those things were materials to refine Air-frozen Beads.
He only had one method for refining Air-frozen Beards. And in the Immortal Palace, the seat of Water Leopard had been vacant for a long time, so there were no refining materials. When Junior Leopard had told Green Spirit about it, unexpectedly, Green Spirit's tone changed when he heard Air-frozen Beads. It never came to Junior Leopard's mind that Air-frozen Beads were not celestial devices, but a fairy weapon, the Taihao Fairy Weapon.
But after that, through careful inquiry, he understood that the Air-frozen Beads that Green Spirit had told him about were not the same thing as what he had spoken of because their materials were totally different. After his description of the material and refining technique, Green Spirit thought for a while and told him that the Air-frozen Beads given by the Immortal Palace could also be called Air-frozen Beads. But some materials of the Air-frozen Beads had been changed into some other materials that were easier to obtain. It was a simplified Taihao Fairy Weapon. Even if it was successfully refined, its effectiveness would be greatly reduced. But, it was still a Pure Yang Celestial Device, and even better than an ordinary Pure Yang Celestial Device. After all, it was a copy of fairy weapon. The mystery of fairy weapons could never be compared with an ordinary Pure Yang Celestial Device.
Because of that, he extinguished the thought of refining the Air-frozen Beads because the most important material for refining genuine Air-frozen Beads was called the Heaven Nine Essence Pearl. It had been rare even in antiquity times, not to mention at present. The material given by the Immortal Palace was replaced by Wind Beads. In Green Spirit's words, Wind Beads were rare oddities. Their essence came from the wind. In the present world, Wind Beads were just like the Heaven Nine Essence Pearls. They did not appear for tens of thousands of years, so how could they be easy to obtain?
But unexpectedly, Prince Xiaoming's letter had mentioned Wind Beads.
"It seems Prince Xiaoming is also from the Immortal Palace. Which constellation is she among the 28 constellations?" Junior Leopard thought to himself as his hand vibrated lightly and crushed the letter that he was holding, but his smile became gentler. "So, brother Cao is a friend of Prince Xiaoming. You should have told me initially. And by the way, who dared to stir up trouble with you? You can just tell me and I will make him pay."
"Who would dare?" Cao Xuetang answered quickly, looking embarrassed. "I was set up, but I'm not so sure who did this to me. For this, I will make them pay."
"If you need me, you can just tell me directly. I will help you if I possibly can!" Junior Leopard promised him as he patted his chest.
"Alright!" Cao said, "That's very kind of you, Your Excellency!"
"Please don't be so courteous. Don't call me Your Excellency. I'm, at most, a landlord in the shabby and poorest area. You can just call me Junior Leopard if you don't mind that." Junior Leopard laughed, then suddenly, he became serious. "You were badly injured. You shouldn't stay in such a terrible place. Though my place is remote, it is big. What about moving to my place, so we can look after each other!"
"Um…" Cao Zhi murmured to himself. As a Venerable of the Sect of Flame, although he could not be called a rich and powerful man, he had never got into so much trouble before. At first, he tried to cooperate with Junior Leopard, but unexpectedly, he almost got into a dilemma. He almost lost his face. It was so embarrassing for him to move to Junior Leopard's territory. But, he did feel uncomfortable living in this shabby room, so he hesitated. Finally, he nodded. "With such being the case, sorry for bothering you. And thanks!"
The fire was burning hot in the charcoal brazier, which made the whole room so warm. The cold north wind was whistling outside, but it gave off no hint of a chill in the house.
Inside, Cao Xuetang had changed his clothes and his wound had been bandaged. He had regained his Qi and blood and looked much better than before.
"I never expected that you were not only good at cultivation, but that your medical skills would also be so amazing!" Though he still felt weak in Qi and blood, he knew that the poison was gone. Thinking of Junior Leopard's mysterious and effective method, he felt even more surprised.
"Shitty medical skills. I was just lucky years ago to get a treasure which could eliminate poison!" Junior Leopard chuckled. There were so many treasures to eliminate poison, not only the Poison-absorbing Green Bead. He just mentioned a "treasure" and changed the subject. "You made this more complicated and mysterious. If you offered this letter to me earlier, there wouldn't be such a big problem."
"You are right. I was too cautious. I had no idea that you and Prince Xiaoming were friends." Cao Xuetang gave a wry smile.
Those simple words made everything clear.
Where there were people, there were conflicts. It was a rule in the Imperial Court and among well-known families, barons, and even the Sect of Flame. Cao Xuetang used to be a powerful Venerable of the Sect of Flame, but later, when another influence of the Sect of Flame arose, he gradually lost his power and became just a figurehead as a Venerable, like those titular Elders in the well-known families. Though he was a Venerable, his cultivation was only at Level Seven, which was not prominent in the Sect of Flame. It was fine when he had real power, but now, without real power, he could only be used as a soldier. When trouble came, he worked as a sword for others. He was a man seeking fame and wealth, so he felt unwilling but had no alternative. He had lost power with only a Level Seven cultivation, so he had no strength to fight against those who had real power. Unexpectedly, he got some information about Nanming Ignis, so he thought maybe he should obtain the fire seed to improve his power, then he could go back to the Sect of Flame to regain his power.
As a man in Jianghu, he knew clearly the perils therein. As for this kind of good news, he would never tell outsiders and had to be careful. However, he could not smile anymore when he knew the exact location of the Nanming Ignis.
Because it was the exact territory of Zhou Bao.
After the complete collapse of Northern Yuan, the Great Jin had conferred titles of nobility on lots of people and carved up numerous fiefs to give to them. The enfeoffment map of Northern Yuan circulated among the people, but only a few names could be remembered, including the territory of several schools and powerful families as well as some territories with good fame, strong power, and good merits. Unfortunately, Junior Leopard's territory was included.
Cao Xuetang knew it was trouble when he saw that the location belonged to Junior Leopard's territory. If it were another place, he would not care even if it was in those millennium families because they did not have many powerful people. But, it was different in Junior Leopard's territory. It was known that Zhou Bao was in his own territory now, and it was impossible to conceal it from Zhou Bao because it would cause a big movement if he wanted to get the kindling of Nanming Ignis. So, he just wondered if it would be a better way to cooperate with Junior Leopard.
Junior Leopard cultivated the Fire Way Method, so the kindling of Nanming Ignis was also beneficial to him. Besides, Cao Xuetang did not know Zhou Bao at all. Zhou Bao was a rebel of the Imperial Court, while he was the viscount and lord of the Imperial Court. They had no connections at all. In theory, they were enemies. It would not be easy for him to cooperate with Junior Leopard.
Furthermore, he was not sure if that thing was still in Junior Leopard's territory, so he had asked his capable assistant, Cao Zhi, and his son and to go and investigate first.
There were so many people doing trafficking activities in the north. So, Cao Zhi and his son went into the territory of Junior Leopard as trafficking businessmen.
He thought he had done it secretly, but actually, he was noticed from the very beginning. His enemy in the Sect of Flame was not ordinary. Once his strange movement was noticed, he was spotted by his enemy's followers, who did not know his purpose. They hid in the dark and inquired about his movement. When they found that both Cao Zhi and Cao Xuetang's son had gone to Junior Leopard's territory, they realized that something was really suspicious and continued to tail after them.
As for Junior leopard, on one hand, he did not have that many people, on the other hand, he did not care about that stuff, so he did not perceive it at all. Even if he realized it, he would not care. It was none of his business, after all.
But finally, things were now out of control. Cao Zhi made things troublesome, and Cao Shun, the son of Cao Xuetang, was young and unable to make a decision. With no other people that could be trusted, Cao Xuetang sent his son and Cao Zhi to come here. Cao Shun was nervous so that he kept on nagging. When he was free, he liked to chat with Cao Zhi. Then, the message had leaked out during their chats just like on that day that he inadvertently blurted it out it in front of Junior Leopard.
Originally, it was impossible for Cao Xuetang to get that matter done well. He even did not know that his son had blurted it out. Unexpectedly, Prince Xiaoming came to find him one day, offering him a letter and requiring him to have a conversation with Zhou Bao. He did not know it until now that his father had done a favor for Prince Xiaoming, who had come here exactly for returning the favor and had pointed him in the right direction. He felt so surprised and happy. Meanwhile, he received a letter from Cao Shun. According to the letter, the location was in the exact territory of Junior Leopard.
In this way, the matter became simpler. Packing their luggage, he and his wife started their way toward Junior Leopard's territory. Unfortunately, he had been intercepted along the way. Although he killed those killers, he was badly injured and he tried his best to get here. Maybe he would only have one breath remaining now if Junior Leopard had not detoxified him.
"This has been made so complicated. Prince Xiaoming should be the one to blame. Why didn't he tell you about it at first? He didn't show up until you had been so heavily wounded. Why? To show his strength?" Junior Leopard complained to him.
But Cao Xuetang dared not complain like that and spoke hurriedly. "The Great Venerable should not be blamed. It was confidential information, so I kept it secret and had no expectation that it would leak out, which has caused so much trouble."
"Trouble? It didn't get that far." Junior Leopard said, "Don't worry, brother. I promise that there won't be any trouble in my territory. Just take a rest and heal your wounds. When you are ready, I will keep you company to find the kindling of Nanming Ignis!"
"All right. Thank you."
"Not at all. It's beneficial for both of us!" Junior Leopard said with a laugh.
When Junior Leopard left, Cao's wife stared at him with a worried look and asked, "Xuetang, do you think Zhou Bao…?"
Cao Xuetang just waved and said, "It's okay. We have no alternatives. I believe in the Great Venerable."
She nodded and said nothing.
After getting all the family members of Cao Xuetang settled, Junior Leopard went outside, grinning.
For Junior leopard, the Great Venerable of the Sect of Flame was not a very important person, but he did play an influential role in Jianghu.
The Sect of Flame was a powerful organization in the south, and even the Imperial Court feared it. Though Cao Xuetang had lost his influence, if he obtained the kindling of Nanming Ignis this time, his cultivation would progress. With the help of Prince Xiaoming, he would become powerful and influential again.
Now that he encountered difficulties, it was not a big deal to do him a favor. On the contrary, it was beneficial for Junior Leopard to help him.
Junior Leopard knew his weaknesses. He did not have a strong foundation. Even if he could say that he came from the Wu family and was a disciple of the Wu Sect, he did not have the bloodline of the Wu family. If he had no power, the Wu family would not care about him at all, which he knew from the attitude of Wu Yulong. Even though his cultivation had already reached Level Seven, he was just a powerful servant when compared to the direct line of descent and in the eyes of the prestigious sects and schools.
Otherwise, Wu Yulong and Lin Xiaoqing would not dare to look for trouble in an unbridled way.
It seemed that he had no choice but to join the Immortal Palace, but secretly he also thought that it could offer him a guarantee and an opportunity to make friends with more powerful guys. Of course, it was not that easy to do it within one day.
As a civil servant in his previous life, he knew that the relationships among people required managing. They could not last long if you did not manage the relationships, no matter how close they used to be.
Everything mattered in management!
Now that he was someone in Jianghu, in public, with the support of Wang She from Tian Long Taoism, idlers had no courage to look for trouble. But Junior Leopard knew that Wang She had already gotten himself enough trouble. In addition, he was the Chief of Tian Long Taoism, so Junior Leopard would not bother him over trifles. And for other famous experts in Jianghu, Junior Leopard did not know many of them and had no idea how to get connected with them without a particular reason. He had met Prince Xiaoming of the Sect of Flame once. He seemed to have some relations with Wang She. Now he was sure that he was also a member of the Immortal Palace, so Junior leopard wanted to make friends with him.
"Keeping a good relationship with Prince Xiaoming will just do good things for me. The Sect of Flame is the most powerful organization in the south. Even the Imperial Court can't keep it under control. If Cao Xuetang goes back and regains real power, then I will get more relations and many things could be much easier. Even just for the business of the Anyuan Store, if it becomes bigger and has some trouble in the south, there would be no need to disturb Prince Xiaoming. Cao Xuetang is powerful enough to deal with all the trouble." That was why Junior Leopard became so enthusiastic.
"It has been a long time doing things like this. It has become more like my previous life. Boring. So boring!" Junior leopard shook his head, snickered at himself in his heart. "In the end, I'm still a laic!"
And soon after, he left it behind. Now that Cao Xuetang had been settled in his place, he would not allow something to go wrong with Cao Xuetang there. Though Cao Xuetang had killed those who had intercepted him, his opponent already had known his purpose and they would send better killers with high cultivations. If the opponent was smart and prudent enough, swarms of masters of martial arts and experts would be sent. After all, it was the kindling of Nanming Ignis!
Even for ordinary people, it was a wonderful thing. Not to mention those guys who practiced the Ignis Mysterious Skill in the Sect of Flame.
Perhaps swarms of masters of martial arts were already on their way, trying to look for trouble in his territory soon.
But this was his place and he would not fear, no matter how many people came.
Junior Leopard clearly knew the direction of Nanming Ignis. He had not explored it personally, but he could not be sure if there were other guys watching it in the dark, so he settled the Yin and Yang Dust Formation there.
"The Yin and Yang Dust Formation, Hehe, I never imagined that it had so many profound mysteries!" Junior Leopard thought of the shocked expression of Green Spirit when he found out that Junior Leopard understood the Yin and Yang Dust Formation.
The formation did not come from the necromancers, but was passed down from primitive times. However, it was those necromancers who made the formation known and useful.
The Yin and Yang Dust Formation was one of the greatest masterpieces of the necromancers.
Junior Leopard understood just a little and Green Spirit did not know much more, even though he was a Great Ancient Demon. But Green Spirit said that it was enough for them now.
For common people who just acquired the Individual Immortal Karma Rank but still had not entered the Mysterious Realm, it was enough—it could kill all of them, no matter how many people came.
He was not a cruel man, but when his benefits were involved, he would not hesitate to kill.
This was his place, where everything belonged to him and he could do whatever he wanted. Even though he had settled a killing formation in his place, no one else could say anything about it. Recently, he had been chatting with Cao Xuetang, and he also noticed the movement of the Yin and Yang Dust Formation. He also put Green Spirit inside of it.
Over the past few days, Green Spirit had made some progress by absorbing the existence of the sun and moon. Though he did not necessarily have much strength and was unable to perform the power of the Pure Yang Celestial Device, it was easy to control the Yin and Yang Dust Formation. By now, a few batches of people had been killed there, including masters of martial arts at Levels Five and Six and two at Level Seven.
"Did you bitches think that this was your vegetable garden and you could come and go at any time? You can not leave anymore."
Junior Leopard arrived at the other side of the mountain. Walking into the Yin and Yang Dust Formation and staring at the people swoon on the ground, he scolded them angrily.
"They are just some idiots, there's no need to get angry with them." The voice of Green Spirit rang out faintly. With its dim and green fog, the formation was a small world. It seemed to be spacious, but there was no way out. If people became trapped inside and had no understanding of its mystery, they would be trapped permanently and die even if their cultivation had reached Level Seven, Level Eight, or even Level Nine.
The body of Green Spirit was green and foggy. Now he was speaking from inside the formation, misty and mysterious, making Junior Leopard feel cold in his bones and spine even though he knew who it was.
"Why did you come out? If someone saw this…"
"They could not see anything at all. In the Yin and Yang Dust Formation, they could just see what I wanted them to see, and they couldn't see anything that I didn't want them to see!"
"All right, stop. How about the matter that I asked you to inquire about?"
"There really is kindling of Nanming Igins here!" Green Spirit said. Junior Leopard had settled him in the formation, not only to control the Yin and Yang Dust Formation, but also to explore the kindling of Nanming Ignis.
"Cao Xuetang was right that the kindling of Nanming Ignis was brought by a meteorite and pounded on the prairie for many years. The valley here may have been left by that meteorite, and the deepest part of the valley is the location of the kindling. But now, there is a bottomless pool. I guess that's because the meteorite was too heavy, so it pounded a deep hole. Then, it was filled with water after so many years. It should have been at least seven or eight thousand years ago. If you want to get the kindling of Nanming Ignis, you need to get inside of the pool. But you already have the Demonic Fire of the Primitive Dragon Chimera and the Tusita Fire. Besides, you don't practice Nanming. The Nanming Ignis is of the lowest level, so it isn't worth giving too much energy and time. It's more beneficial to use the time to practice your acupoints and meditate on the Ying and Yang Dust Formation."
"Entrusted by people, you should try your best to keep your words. Once that I had promised, I had to offer my help!" Junior leopard laughed. "Besides, from the words of Cao Xuetang, there should be other benefits besides that kindling of Nanming Ignis. That was why he wanted to cooperate with me. Obviously, he was not sure what it was. I immediately promised him when I saw the letter from Prince Xiaoming, so he did not tell me anything further."
"Other benefits?" Hearing this, Green Spirit looked surprised and asked, "What other benefits will there be? Be careful, don't be fooled."
"He does not dare. He didn't say it just because he wasn't sure. Let's wait. If there are other benefits, I will get my share!" Junior Leopard smiled.