Ziju Min grew quite grave after reviewing the list.
He exhaled softly after a long while. “Shao Yuan, the Crowning Empyrean Pill’s materials are indeed rare. But so far as I know, they can still be found on Myriad Abyss, and the Eternal Sacred Land is capable of shouldering the costs.”
“Please put out requests for them then. The more complete the materials, the better. As long as I have the materials, I’ll be able to refine flawless pills.”
What Jiang Chen least wanted to waste now was time. He didn’t want to jump through so many hoops to get to his objective. The sooner everything was resolved, the better. Only then could he fully devote himself to his clash with Xiahou Zong.
They were fated to meet in battle. Jiang Chen didn't want to be distracted by the issue of how to garner the sacred land’s support after Xiahou Zong exited closed door cultivation. He wanted to spend all his energy on preparation.
Ziju Min didn’t think for too long. He nodded gravely. “Alright. I have more than enough authority when it comes to pill dao–related things, so I can make the request for these materials. My connections in Myriad Abyss should ensure the success of that. However, hosting a pill dao convention is something I must inquire the three primes about. It can only happen with their acquiescence. It will be very hard for me to pull it off without full-fledged support.”
Jiang Chen smiled faintly. “There is nothing to lose and everything to gain. I don’t think the three honorable primes will refuse.”
He was confident in the decision makers’ wisdom here. If they didn't support him, he would then suspect exactly how much ability they had in the first place.
“Alright. I will ask the three primes right away.”
Jiang Chen nodded. “The quicker the better.”
“You’re not coming with me?” Ziju Min blinked.
“I’ll pass.” Jiang Chen felt that his presence would make things too conspicuous. He wanted to see whether the three primes had the courage to approve his plan.
The three primes didn't brush off Ziju Min’s request for audience. His current position within the sacred land was untouchable. He was one of the ten great elders, a pillar of pill dao. However, he was as courteous as ever and approached the primes with appropriate decorum.
The first prime smiled, pleased that the elder hadn’t changed with recent events.
“Elder Ziju, you must have a reason for coming to see us in such a hurry. I hear that Shao Yuan has requested a sovereign mission. ‘The Flames of Vengeance’, was it? Do you support him in this?”
The second and third primes looked at Ziju with smiles as well. The matter had captured the universal attention of the sacred land’s leadership. Their relative importance made overt enthusiasm inappropriate, so Ziju Min’s visit was the perfect chance to sate their curiosity.
“That’s why I’m here, yes,” Ziju Min nodded.
“Hahaha, so you are supporting him in this.” The first prime roared with laughter. Her eyes glinted shrewdly. “Elder Ziju,” she inquired in a low voice, “how sure is Shao Yuan of being able to complete this mission? According to my intel, Shi Xuan is already a grandmaster within Flora Divine Nation. He is sixth in skill within all ten of the divine nations… a tough nut to crack.”
“Tough is an understatement.” Ziju Min grew serious. “That’s what I told Shao Yuan as well. Alas, his opinion remained firm.”
“Oh? So you weren’t the one who told him to take this mission?”
“No.” Ziju Min shook his head with a wry smile. “Actually, I hoped he would go slow and steady by taking things one step at a time. He’s in a bit of a hurry though.”
The first prime was perplexed. “Shao Yuan’s already proved himself enough, hasn’t he? Why is he in such a hurry?”
Ziju Min hesitated a moment, then sighed. “He has his reasons. He thirsts for our unequivocal support.”
“Haha, he is more than talented enough to receive it in time. I think his challenge is too careless and abrupt. If he fails, it would be a very serious blow to his reputation and character.” This was the first prime’s foremost concern.
A genius like Shao Yuan needed to be well cultivated and popularized through every positive embellishment. Failing a mission would be precisely the opposite of that. As a new disciple, he had plenty of time to demonstrate his skill. He didn’t need to risk so much.
“I’ve said that already to him, first prime. Unfortunately, he’s too stubborn to be persuaded.”
“It certainly seems like it. He has guaranteed to me that he has a sixty to seventy percent chance of succeeding—provided Shi Xuan accepts his challenge, of course. We’ve discussed the finer details for how to make this happen…”
Ziju Min related the finer points of his conversation with Jiang Chen. The three primes looked at each other when he finished.
The third prime coughed out a laugh. “Isn’t this somewhat too laborious, Elder Ziju?”
“Somewhat, yes,” Ziju Min nodded.
“We can do all that,” the first prime interceded. “However, we must be certain that he wins his challenge against Shi Xuan at this convention. As long as that’s the case, it will all be completely worthwhile. But...”
“Exactly. What if he fails? If he loses terribly, we’ll have brought down a stone on our own foot.” The second prime voiced his concerns.
Ziju Min remained silent. He had informed the three primes of all the particulars. They would be responsible for the final decision.
The first prime mused a long while, then gazed somberly at Ziju Min. “Elder Ziju, from your understanding of Shao Yuan, do you suspect that he’s being hot-headed and overconfident?”
“I don’t see any of that. From my observation, he is clever, quick-witted, and apparently supremely assured of his success in this endeavour. There is no blindness in his behavior.” Ziju Min spoke only the truth.
Because Jiang Chen was completely certain of his victory in this case, he had been perfectly relaxed in all of his interactions.
The first prime was at an impasse.
“What do you think, my friends?” She found it hard to come to a decision by herself. This was a thorny issue. Hosting a convention was easy, but losing face at one’s own event would be catastrophic for the Eternal Sacred Land. They couldn't afford becoming the butt of jokes for the rest of the world.
The third prime smiled wryly. “Personally, I don’t really want to host a convention. We can’t afford to lose so close to home.”
“Maybe we can find another opportunity for Shao Yuan to challenge Shi Xuan?” The second prime couldn’t help suggesting. “Everything’s fine as long as we don’t lose on home turf. He’s still young, after all!”
Ziju Min had a different opinion. “I rather think there’s nothing wrong with Shao Yuan losing at all. Just as you said, Second Prime, he is still young. As long as he doesn’t lose too badly, I see no issue with it. If the match is an even one, it would be an honor for him. A tie would be a small victory for the Sacred Land, and a win, an unrivaled triumph.”
It was exactly as the elder had said. As long as the loss wasn’t too pathetic, the sacred land wouldn’t mind at all.
A potential victory, on the other hand, came with fabulous benefits. It would be perfect vengeance as well as air out the depression that had clouded the sacred land for many a year. More importantly, the faction would gain some authority in terms of pill dao. It would become equals with the other divine nations’ ruling factions in this regard.
When Shao Yuan did grow up, the Eternal Sacred Land’s pill dao future would be bright indeed.
Ziju Min was sure that the young man’s pill dao potential needed only time to blossom. Given sufficient space to grow, he would surpass every other pill dao giant before long. But would the battle he desired actually come to pass in the near future?
Were the three primes daring enough to make the decision?
The first prime mused for quite a while, unable to make up her mind.
“Elder Ziju, what would your decision be?” The leader of the sacred land suddenly asked, her eyes intent upon the elder’s face.
“I would agree without any hesitation. I trust Shao Yuan completely. I feel that he has come for the sole purpose of creating miracles for us.” Ziju Min was a diehard supporter now. “Plus, Myriad Abyss has never seen the two kinds of pills he’s proposed. One increases the likelihood of breaking through from great emperor to empyrean, and the other grants a free level to an empyrean expert.”
“What? You’re sure he has these two kinds of pills?”
“He hasn’t refined them yet, but he guarantees that he is entirely able to.”
“That…” The first prime’s expression grew conflicted. “Elder Ziju, do… do you believe that, too? If these two kinds of pills can be actualized, the entire pill dao world in Myriad Abyss will be turned upside down.”
“My observations reveal the truth in his words. Moreover, I hazard that his expansive heritage doesn’t entirely come from an ancestral bloodline. He may very well be a reincarnated divine!”
“What?” The news stunned the three primes like a thunderclap.
“What did you say? A reincarnated divine spirit?”
Ziju Min nodded seriously. “Indeed. His talent can’t be explained solely through an inherited bloodline. Only the residual memories from a past life can fully provide him with such a wealth of knowledge.”
The three primes traded looks with each other, amazement writ all over their faces.