Chapter 470: The Endless Recruitment of the Elders
Jiang Chen roughly understood Mu Gaoqi’s meaning. The best pills in the Regal Pill Palace were all distributed uniformly. They didn’t exist in large enough quantity to make a profit from selling them. As for ordinary pills, they were useless to core disciples, so there was abundant supply with no demand. There was no market for them in the sect. Therefore, while there was indeed some small trade between the disciples in the Regal Pill Palace, but there was no opportunity for a larger scale market.
“Daoist Gaoqi, if I were to say that I have a unique pill recipe that none of the other sects have, with above average effects, would there be a market for it in the sects?”
This question made Mu Gaoqi start slightly. “Brother Jiang Chen, do you mean that?” He blinked his eyes quickly, his lashes fluttering on his cheeks.
“Don’t bother with the validity of my words for now, analyze the market for me.”
Mu Gaoqi nodded. “If there really is a unique recipe and pill that is eminently suited for the core disciples, there would still likely be a market for it. However, I still think it’d be very difficult to establish a large scale market. There are many reasons. Firstly, the sects allocate pills to all of the disciples, preventing a shortage in this area. Secondly, everyone’s cultivation resources are limited and thus lack sufficient purchasing power. Thirdly, the sects may not allow personal operation of business.” When Mu Gaoqi finished his words, he’d immediately slashed Jiang Chen’s great plan to gather wealth in half.
Jiang Chen had already readied a recipe and had planned on making a great deal out of things, even leveraging the partnership model that he’d originally formed with the Hall of Healing. He was particular fond of earning money without putting forth any effort, splitting a share of the profits without any investment at all.
However, he hadn’t thought that there wouldn’t be a market at all for his great plan in the sects. All the same, he wasn’t dejected. He decided to pay further attention to the situation.
The way he’d partnered with the Hall of Healing had first brought in money from the Eastern Kingdom, then hauled in massive revenue from the entire sixteen kingdom alliance. In the same vein, Jiang Chen believed that as long as he possessed an absolute advantage with his pill recipe, he could also earn money, and great amounts of it at that, because the Myriad Domain was vast.
He’d at least be able to stop worrying about resources. However, he was proceeding much more cautiously than he had in the Eastern Kingdom. He wouldn’t easily take out a pill recipe, since recipes at this advanced level were a much less casual affair here than the Hall of Healing. If he accidentally slipped up and elicited too much attention, his troubles would only increase. He might even attract a fatal disaster. After all, the recipe that he was going to bring out this time was quite excellent, to the point where it would cause others to go mad.
“Brother Jiang Chen, if you have a recipe, I would advise you to not make money off of it. The best thing to do is to offer it to the sect and add to your accomplishments, exchanging it for resources. If you spend so much time and effort to get a business going, being successful is one thing, but us cultivators can’t afford to waste so much time and effort. Besides, if the sect finds out that you have an exclusive recipe and didn’t offer it up, they might come make trouble for you.” Mu Gaoqi’s thinking was on the straight and narrow after all. He didn’t ask Jiang Chen about his recipe, but focused his efforts on analyzing the situation.
“Brother Jiang Chen, I’ve built up a small amount of savings over the years. I can be in charge of the pills for your followers for the next three months. The stipend you get every month should be enough for you to use.” It was readily apparent that Mu Gaoqi was going all out to recruit Jiang Chen as a comrade. He didn’t want Jiang Chen to waste his time on unlikely endeavors, nor did he want Jiang Chen to possibly stir up trouble.
If it wasn’t for the preset timeline of three months, he would be fully in favor of setting out immediately for the spring.
Regardless, Jiang Chen could still feel Mu Gaoqi’s sincerity and also knew how important that spring was to him. After he sent Mu Gaoqi off, Xue Tong spoke with some worry, “Young master, Mu Gaoqi is being so generous that I fear the place he is inviting you to is certainly very dangerous. Otherwise, he wouldn’t need to be so eagerly attentive!”
Jiang Chen smiled faintly, “This I’m naturally aware of, but the spring is also as he says, a life changing opportunity for him. It’s normal that he’s so eager! Since he is treating me sincerely, I won’t let him walk away empty handed. But if he’s up to any tricks, I can withdraw at any time and leave him with nothing.”
With Jiang Chen’s ability in reading others, he was certain that Mu Gaoqi was being quite sincere with no ulterior motives in inviting him to join the group. The latter was being so generous because he didn’t want Jiang Chen to exert any effort and possibly run afoul of someone. If an accident befell Jiang Chen, it would impact his great plan of exploration.
“Never mind this, I’ll go to the Hall of Spring and Autumn first. Apparently we can request missions there. I’ll at least first gain an understanding of the mission levels and their corresponding rewards. If the rewards are rich enough, I can actually request a few to do. If they aren’t, then I’ll forget about them.” Jiang Chen now understood the struggles of daily living as he was in charge of looking after his people. He didn’t want to waste large amounts of time in completing sect missions, only to receive a pitiful amount of rewards in the end. He had to understand the rules first.
He was about to set out when visitors suddenly appeared outside his door, claiming to be the elders of the Regal Pill Palace.
“Regal Pill Palace elders?” Jiang Chen was a bit surprised. His fight with Yan Hongtu shouldn’t have been enough to alarm the true experts, shouldn’t it?
Although there were more than a hundred elders in the Regal Pill Palace, their position in the sect was still exceedingly high. They all held great power and exercised it in different areas.
“I am the elder of the Herbal Hall, Linghu Xian. May I come in for a chat?” This elder possessed white hair with a child’s complexion, appearing to be in sprightly spirits and very hearty.
The Herbal Hall was one of the top three halls out of the nine in the Regal Pill Palace. It was listed as part of the top along with the Hall of Might and the Hall of Spring and Autumn.
The Herbal Hall was in charge of refining pills, cultivating ingredients, and held sway over the production of pills.
The Hall of Might was without a doubt the foremost of the halls. It oversaw every part of cultivator training, including techniques, secret arts, weapons, and others. The entire ensemble fell under its jurisdiction.
The Hall of Spring and Autumn was in charge of distributing pills and all sect resources.
Of course, these were just their areas of responsibility. It was the Palace Head and the elder council who held true power in the sect. However, they couldn’t possibly personally oversee everything. Therefore, the halls still possessed great power in the areas they were in charge of.
Since Elder Linghu Xian was in charge of the Herbal Hall, he must be a pill master.
“Please come in, Elder Linghu.” Although Jiang Chen didn’t know why he was here, he couldn’t detect any hostility. Perhaps the elder wasn’t here for Yan Hongtu?
Jiang Chen wouldn’t purposefully fawn on this sect heavyweight, but neither was he willing to easily offend him.
“Little friend Jiang Chen has moved into the Rosy Valley for three days, yet there are none in the Regal Pill Palace who are unaware of your name. It seems that gold will shine through no matter where it is.” Linghu Xian chuckled, voicing some generic pleasantries amidst his compliments. Jiang Chen naturally didn’t take him seriously either.
“Ai, a young man with his group of followers. You haven’t had it easy since arriving at the Regal Pill Palace either.” Linghu Xian’s tone suddenly changed. “Jiang Chen, has everything been smooth for you in the past couple of days?”
“Many thanks for Elder Linghu’s concern, things have been relatively smooth.”
“Mm, mm. The number of people coming to make trouble for you after Yan Hongtu’s defeat at your hands will certainly be much less. However, coming from the Precious Tree Sect, your foundation might not be to your satisfaction. Do you lack cultivation resources?”
Jiang Chen couldn’t help but laugh internally, not knowing just what Linghu Xian was up to. He didn’t have any sort of relationship with this elder. Linghu Xian’s sudden concern was absolutely not genuine. I wonder what he wants to know?
“A lack of resources is only temporary. As time goes on and the path levels itself out, I trust that there won’t be many problems with my resources.” Jiang Chen spoke candidly and didn’t deny that he was a bit short on funds at the moment.
Linghu Xian chuckled. “Alright, I’ll cut to the point. Since you are short on resources, I happen to have an easy job here that pays well. I wonder if you might be interested?”
“An easy job with good pay? What kind of good job is this?”
“Heh heh, I’m going to refine a pill soon and need to recruit some more outstanding medicine boys to act as a support. Jiang Chen, are you interested?”
Jiang Chen smiled. You’re quite bold, aren’t you, wanting me to be your medicine boy? He immediately shook his head and declined, “I’ve never been a medicine boy and don’t have much interest in it.”
Linghu Xian chuckled again. “It might be a bit too much to call them medicine boys, they’re actually assistants. Consider it a bit more, little friend. I won’t mistreat you in terms of resources.”
For some reason, Jiang Chen didn’t have a good impression of Linghu Xian. Although the old fellow had a polite smile on, little hints of insincerity here and there made him appear overly shrewd. Jiang Chen didn’t particularly care for interacting with people like these. Therefore, whether it was being a medicine boy or an assistant, he wasn’t interested at all.
Jiang Chen declined politely no matter what Linghu Xian said. The elder’s face finally began to darken and turn ugly. He left with a flourish of his sleeves, obviously very dissatisfied with Jiang Chen’s lack of showing him face.
A few more elders visited after Linghu Xian left. Their purpose was all the same. This bizarre scene rather surprised Jiang Chen. Why had all these elders suddenly come looking for him? They all happened to be refining pills with great coincidence, and every single one of them happened to need a medicine boy?
The matter was quite odd, making Jiang Chen even less likely to agree to anyone. He was well aware that if he said yes to anyone now, he would definitely offend the others.
A full eight elders from the Herbal Hall came to visit Jiang Chen’s residence over the next couple of days, all wanting to recruit Jiang Chen. He politely declined them all as he didn’t understand the situation.
He was indeed lacking in resources, but he didn’t want to sell himself in such an unknowing situation, particularly when so many elders were coming to recruit him. Something must be amiss.
He decided to first look at the sect’s missions at the Hall of Spring and Autumn. All he needed was his own efforts to feed and clothe himself! He had no interest at all in working for these elders, and being awarded that little bit of resources after they’d profited off his labor.