“The path of an Immortal is different to that of a mortal’s” was an ancient saying in the Nine Regions. Mortals without the fate or luck to step onto the path of the Immortal could only look up to those who could in admiration. An ordinary mortal being able to step onto the path of the Immortal was something that had only recently happened within the last one thousand years. One thousand years ago, a person in the Immortal world had broken the wall between mortals and Immortals, creating a miracle.
This miracle was the famous ‘Six Harmony Spirit Base’.
The Six Harmony Spirit Base was invented one thousand years ago by the Founder of the Sheng Jing Sect, the Six Harmony Patriarch. Using a secret cultivation technique as well as Heavenly and Earthly treasures, the Six Harmony Patriarch created a special powder. By continuously ingesting the powder for forty-five days, even mortals can develop spirit bases. The iron law of the Xiuxian world had been broken.
It was a pity that the Six Harmony Spirit Base was much weaker than the ‘natural’ Five Elements Spirit Bases. [TLN: The five elements being fire, water, wood, metal and earth]. Practicing basic cultivations with a Five Elements Spirit Base would take a cultivator around fifty years to reach the Foundation Establishment stage. However, even if someone with a Six Harmony Spirit Base practiced bitterly and diligently for a hundred years, they would still be stuck at the eighth or ninth stage of the Qi Cultivating stage. As such, it was often ridiculed as the “Test Spirit Base” or the “Castrated Spirit Base” or the “Transparent Spirit Base”.
This sort of man-made spirit base crushed the iron rule that had been in place for tens of thousands of years, causing large waves of excitement. Although the spirit base was quite terrible, it still allowed tens of thousands of people to join the Xiuxian world. But what was the use of tens of thousands trash who could not even reach the Foundation Establishment stage? They lacked the efficiency to be even servants. Thus, the waves of excitement gradually died down.
However, the Six Harmony Patriarch did not give up- the Six Harmony Spirit Base was only the beginning. What lay beyond it was an incredible opportunity and chance. Although this was not seen by other people, it was clear as day to the creator, Six Harmony Patriarch.
At the time, the Six Harmony Patriarch had only been at the peak Unity stage, and was only one step away from the Enlightenment stage. After stepping into the Enlightenment stage, he would have an almost limitless lifespan. However, he never made this step, instead spending the remainder of his life creating spirit bases for mankind.
This led to the creation of Seven Skilfulness Spirit Base, the Eight Treasure Spirit Base, the Nine Creation Spirit Base and the Ten Direction Spirit Base… the effects of each subsequent spirit base became stronger and stronger, until they were on par with the Double Element Fusion Spirit Bases – only inferior to the Heaven Spirit Base, Earth Spirit Base and some other Special Spirit Bases. Some could even be considered exquisite products. Man-made spirit bases now had an equal footing in the Xiuxian world, gradually becoming more popular, and in the end, changed the Xiuxian world forever. As a result, The Six Harmony Patriarch’s name became incredibly illustrious. His fame was comparable to the Heavenly Qin Emperor who had united the Nine Regions in the ancient times, as well as the ancestor who had led the great war between Immortals and Demons. He became the only ‘flightless’ ‘True Immortal’ in the Xiuxian world. [TLN: Meaning, although he did not become a ‘True Immortal’, the title was given to him out of respect (since he probably would have reached that stage if he didn’t commit himself to just developing spirit bases)].
After one thousand years, man-made spirit bases were very common in the Xiuxian world. In ten cultivators, around eight or nine would have man-made spirit bases. Furthermore, it was not uncommon to see people with man-made spirit bases of the Jindan or Yuanying stage, or even the Deity stage!
But that wasn’t to say that Xiuxian cultivators filled the streets. Although the Sheng Jing Sect had a thousand years of history in creating man-made spirit bases, the number of truly exquisite spirit bases was extremely few. The existence of man-made spirit bases solved the problem of mortals not being able to become Immortals, but whether it was affordable was a completely different matter. After a thousand years of research, the prices of man-made spirit bases decreased greatly. The only type of spirit base that could be bought with the incredible sum of one hundred thousand liang of silver [TLN: approx. 5,000kg of silver] could only buy a trash Six Harmony Spirit Base!
That’s right, the treasure that the Master of the Wang Family had bought for Wang Lu was Six Harmony powder. Once consumed, a Six Harmony Spirit Base would be developed, allowing the user to kiss goodbye the Xiuxian world. Apart from rubbish and joke sects like the Seven Star Sect, no respectable Xiuxian sect would accept a Six Harmony Spirit Base cultivator as free labour, much less a disciple!
On the other hand, the Spirit Blade Sect was one of the rare sects that had existed since the ancient times, and thus followed ancient rules and traditions. That was to say, anyone with a man-made spirit base did not even have the chance to enter.
Indeed, the Spirit Blade Sect did not accept any disciples who had man-made spirit bases. Even the legendary man-made Twelve Tower Spirit Base, which was comparable to natural Fusion Spirit Bases, or even the Earth Spirit Base was not accepted by the Spirit Blade Sect. Members of the sect had to have natural spirit bases that were bestowed upon them by fate, called Fated Cultivators in short.
However, the Spirit Blade Sect’s tradition in the modern world was viewed as laughable. Something that all sects understood was that even if the quality was a bit inferior, that could be overcome with numbers! Even if man-made spirit bases were inferior, having ten times the number of people was more than enough to make up for the discrepancy in power and talent. In the Xiuxian world, the powerful thrived and the weak died. If the Spirit Blade Sect was not willing to accept man-made spirit base cultivators, then it would be their own fault if they perished. A sect could split the Fated Cultivator disciples and the man-made spirit base cultivators into different areas, such as the inner court or outer court. However, simply refusing them purely because of their man-made spirit bases? That was just ridiculous.
As such, the Spirit Blade Sect’s recent decline was not a surprise to anyone. Although it was one of the five great sects, its actual power was probably worse than the level one Ten Thousand Forms Sect, or the Flowing Cloud Sect. If it wasn’t for the fact that other Sects were becoming more and more strict with their requirements, the Spirit Blade Sect’s Celestial Gathering would not have received the same amount of attention.
However, out of all the youths congregated in the Spirit River Town, more than half of them had man-made spirit bases. This was because the only prerequisites stated were: twelve years of age or under with no cultivation yet. There were no other requirements. Thus, many people guessed that maybe the Spirit Blade Sect had finally loosened up on their age-old rule.
However, Wang Lu didn’t believe that this was the case. If it was, then why would the Spirit Blade Sect organise a Celestial Gathering to choose disciples? Why wouldn’t they just find a bunch of people who had good moral standards, then just feed them the special medicines to create decent spirit bases?
“When did I ever say I was an ordinary mortal?”
The pageboy Wang Zhong was not stupid. Hearing his Young Master’s words, a thought formed in his head…
“Young Master, you… have a spirit base?”
Wang Lu harrumphed, but did not reply.
Wang Zhong was completely dumbfounded, and smelling the fragrant medicine aroma in the room, felt like an utter fool.
At the same time, in the reception hall of the inn, the various Princes from all over the land had all submitted to the proprietress’ might, and remained silent. However, a noisy ox cart stopped outside the inn and the elderly man driving the cart got off and walked into the inn. He smiled and said, “Proprietress, the firewood you wanted.”
The proprietress replied with a nonchalant tone, “Alright, got it. Just put the things at the back of the kitchen, I’ll pay you at the end of the month.” After she finished, she flicked her wrist, as if chasing him away.
However, the elderly man acted as if he did not mind at all as he walked to the counter, “Proprietress, two bowls of warm wine and a plate of beans please.”
The proprietress stared at him coldly. The evil glare she looked at him with caused the people around the elderly man to shiver with fright. However, the elderly man’s smile remained the same, and he took out nine copper coins.
Looking at the nine shabby copper coins, the proprietress did not throw the elderly man out. Rather, she put the money away, and handed him two bowls of wine and a plate of beans. The Wen Bao who had been forced to pay a thousand liang of silver for a jar of wine felt incredibly bitter when looking at the elderly man’s measly nine copper coins.
Evidently, the elderly man and the proprietress were familiar with each other. The elderly man chatted with her as he drank his wine. Although the proprietress did not seem interested at all, she still patiently and quietly listened. The other people in the hall, having seen Wang Lu’s premium room voucher, all listened carefully for any clues.
However, after the elderly man finished drinking his wine, he wiped his lips and prepared to leave. The people gathered in the hall had not gleaned any information from listening to him ramble.
The elderly man suddenly turned around as he was about to leave, and sniffed the air. He looked towards the second floor, “This smell… whose stupid kid is that? Daring to eat anything!”
The proprietress also frowned and sniffed the air, “Spirit Base Developing Pills? Weird, could it be him?”
The proprietress coldly stared at him, “A premium room guest.”
“Oh, premium room? Which premium room?”
The proprietress disdainfully replied, “You think I have a lot of premium rooms here?” She frowned again, “No, I need to go and take a look…”
The elderly man was shocked, “It can’t be that serious… can it?”
The proprietress hesitated for a few moments, “True, just going up there like this without any good reason would seem like harassment… in that case, I’ll go and promote some ‘Daughter’s Red Wine’.”
After saying this, the proprietress reached out with her slim and jade-like fingers and steadily lifted up an enormous wine jar, and walked up the stairs. The elderly man pondered for a moment and followed her.
In the reception hall, the people in the crowd looked at each other, but no one dared to go up the stairs as well.
That enormous wine jar, if it was smashed on one’s face, they would surely die.
“For a mortal to become an Immortal, there’s only one path. However, when did I ever say I was an ordinary mortal?”
“Young Master, you… have a spirit base?”
Just as the proprietress reached the door, she was able to hear Wang Lu and Wang Zhong’s conversation. She began to laugh to herself.
It seemed that she had misunderstood. That extraordinary person who had completed the twelve incredibly arduous tasks to receive the premium room voucher surely wouldn’t ruin his own future by consuming Spirit Base Developing Pills. It was just that she had misunderstood and overreacted.
Since it was a misunderstanding on her part, it was not necessary for her to go and ‘promote’ this five-thousand-liang-jar of Daughter Red Wine… heh, why not sell it to that gloomy and cunning Hai Yun Fan downstairs- it would be a pity not to rip him off!
The proprietress turned to leave, but heard the voice in the room continue to speak.
“Young Master, dare I ask, what spirit base… do you have?”
The proprietress’ footsteps slowed as her curiosity was aroused.
“Of course it’s the Heaven Spirit Base.”
Her hands shook, and the jar of wine nearly smashed down onto her foot.
Heaven Spirit Base?!
The elderly man’s head suddenly turned, his face full of shock. He deeply gazed towards the room, his eyes filled with starry lights. He laughed, “The quality is indeed impressive, but… Heaven Spirit Base?”
“Does he think Heaven Spirit Bases are as common as radishes!?”