Chapter 587: Deliberate Suppression
Only Elder Wu Hen, who was keeping an eye on Jiang Chen, would glance at the herbs occasionally; the other elders didn’t spare them even a glance. The spirit herbs growing here were unable to satisfy the appetite of these elder level old monsters. Sky rank herbs were what they sought, and they even disdained to act if it didn’t at least involve earth rank herbs.
The young geniuses only required four hours to pluck the fields in their immediate surroundings bare. These fellows were very satisfied with their bountiful harvests, faces of joy all around. Mu Gaoqi, by virtue of his innate wood constitution, had also hit a big score. “Senior brother Chen, how was your harvest?” Mu Gaoqi asked curiously.
Jiang Chen shook his head and smiled mysteriously, not saying a word. He hadn’t fought for the herbs at all, and the ones he did take could not be considered valuable. But Jiang Chen was confident that in a few days’ time, these herbs could spike in value, giving him unimaginable wealth. After all the herbs were divided, the group set off again.
The island was not large. A large and tall structure came into view through the hazy mist after a few kilometers. Jiang Chen had excellent vision by virtue of his God’s Eye and could make out the structure was actually an altar. There was a large platform surrounded by thousands of stone steps leading up to it, like a ladder ascending to the heavens.
In each corner of the first platform was a garden filled to the brim with spirit herbs. There was a second platform identical to the first after ascending another 400 or so steps. Although the gardens on this second platform were much smaller than the ones on the first, they were abundant in richer spirit power. Different from the first two platforms, the third had an altar in the middle. There was a garden in each corner of this platform, very much like it had been on the previous platforms. The real difference was that these gardens were brimming with layers of fortuitous aura. Rays of respondent light emanated from them and created a breathtaking scene, exuding an exceedingly divine atmosphere.
“Sky rank herbs!”
Jiang Chen could not see the third platform, but when he used Psychic’s Head, his consciousness was on par with any of the elders here. Just like the elders, he discovered the sky rank herbs up on the third platform. Jiang Chen wasn’t sure on the amount of sky herbs that were up there, but their strong and unique sense of spirit power could not be mistaken. He could also tell that there were earth rank herbs growing in the gardens on the second platform.
Correspondingly, the largest four spirit fields on the first level contained true saint rank herbs. This was to say there were three platform levels ranked from low to high, with different levels of fortune that increased in a linear fashion. The elders had all experienced many things in their lives. When their eyes were met with the highest platform, they instantly knew what was there!
The imaginations of these old monsters ran wild. They knew they would find sky rank herbs on the third platform. The only question they couldn’t yet answer was how many of these herbs they would each obtain.
“Everyone, I have a suggestion!” Elder Chen from the Sacred Sword Palace suddenly spoke up. Everyone’s hearts were afire at this time and they were feverishly scheming and plotting. Elder Chen’s words actually broke up this awkward situation.
“What is it?” The elders looked at Elder Chen with some puzzlement.
Elder Chen said straightforwardly, “Everyone here should have guessed by now that the platform on the third level contains sky rank herbs. I suggest we divide up the herbs using the previously decided order.” His Sacred Sword Palace had placed third in the lottery. If they stuck to this plan, he was certain there would still be sky rank herbs for him to obtain. Perhaps, they might even get lucky and get two or three herbs. No one had any objection toward Elder Chen’s restatement of the distribution plan.
“Since the distribution method for the sky rank herbs has been set, shouldn’t there also be rules for the earth rank herbs?”
Sky rank herbs were a legendary existence in the Myriad Domain, so cultivators were willing to put their lives on the line for them. However, they were just too hard to come by and as a result, earth rank herbs were also very precious. Even sage rank cultivators considered earth rank herbs to be luxury items. After all, sage rank cultivators normally used true saint rank herbs and even then, were not able to freely consume them. Everyone had been fully focused on the sky rank herbs, they had forgotten about the earth rank herbs. With Elder Chen’s reminder, realization struck them, he’s right! There’s still earth rank herbs!
Judging from the size of the second platform, there should be quite a number of earth rank herbs available. The sage realm cultivators already harvested quite some earth rank herbs in the ancient herb garden, but none of them would complain to get a few more of these luxury items. Besides, even if they did get their hands on the sky rank herbs, who was to say they could actually use them for themselves? It was much more likely that they would have to hand them over to the sect. Earth rank herbs on the other hand, could be kept for their own use and no one would criticize them for it. “Younger brother Chen, do you have a plan in mind?” Elder Xiang Gan smiled lightly.
Elder Chen smiled. “Since the sky rank herbs were divided according to sect, the earth rank herbs should be divided up according to individual cultivation levels. I recommend only sage realm experts should be allowed to pluck earth rank herbs. Each earth sage realm expert should be allowed two herbs, and each mortal sage realm cultivator one. We’ll take turns harvesting and when everyone’s had their turn, we’ll start again from the beginning until there are none left.”
Elder Xiang Gan had no objections, but still stated overbearingly, “It will be the same as before, the Great Cathedral has number one priority. I suggest we use the previous distribution order and have the fifth rank sects go after the Tristar Sect. Are there any objections?”
“The Sacred Sword Palace has no objections.” Elder Chen replied instantly.
“The Dark North Sect has no objections.”
“The Walkabout Sect likewise has no objections.”
Elder Tan Lang from the Tristar Sect felt quite depressed because his Tristar Sect ranked last in the lottery, making this plan quite unfavorable for them. However, he also understood that objecting would only be inviting humiliation upon himself, so he could only helplessly concur. “What is there for me left to say? There seems to be no objections.”
On the Regal Pill Palace’s side, though they were ranked fourth, this new rule was actually not the fairest for them since they only had four sage realm elders. None of their young geniuses were in the sage realm. This was a great point of dejection for them. As for the Dark North Sect, although they were ranked fifth in the lottery, they had agreed because they had two sage realm young geniuses on top of their four sage realm elders.
The Sacred Sword Palace was in a similar situation with Wang Han and Jing Feng both being in first level sage realm. Elder Chen wouldn’t have made the suggestion in the first place if they didn’t have an advantage in terms of numbers. As for the Great Cathedral, they had no reason to object either, since aside from having priority, their four elders and Xiang Qin and Yue Baize were all in the sage realm.
It was easy to see from this that Elder Chen’s distribution proposal was meant to lower the Regal Pill Palace’s gains. Elder Yun Nie was well aware of the situation, but was helpless to object since everyone supported the proposal. The Regal Pill Palace could not object by itself. As for the elders of the fifth rank sects, they were just here to make up the numbers. They were already thankful to be here; how could they have any right to speak?
“Elder Yun Nie, we’re just waiting on your Regal Pill Palace to agree. Unless, you wish to oppose?” Elder Chen mocked.
Elder Yun Nie snorted. “A small man is intoxicated by his success.”
Elder Chen burst out in laughter. “Yun Nie, I know you’re unhappy. However, it isn’t our fault your young geniuses are trash. If only they were half decent and stepped into the sage realm, wouldn’t your quota be higher?”
Elder Xiang Gan also knew that Elder Chen’s proposal was meant to upset the Regal Pill Palace but he didn’t want to waste any more time.
“Alright, let’s stop digressing. The sky rank herbs and earth rank herbs’ distribution have been decided. As for the true saint herbs on the first platform, let’s have the young geniuses at the origin realm take them. After all, we can’t take everything for ourselves. The young should have a taste as well, mm?” Elder Xiang Gan stepped in to play the role of a good person.
With the sky rank herbs and earth rank herbs’ thus distribution decided, the rest didn’t matter much anymore. Although the remaining true saint herbs were still valuable, all of them combined might not be comparable to a single earth rank herb. This so-called generous gesture seemed less of compensation and more of a way to stuff their mouths full. Mu Gaoqi felt his belly burn with anger after hearing how the herbs would be distributed. He muttered, “The Sacred Sword Palace really is a bunch of bastards, opposing our Regal Pill Palace at every turn. They’re clearly aiming for us with that plan!”
He felt depressed, also because he was completely helpless. After all, in the end it was him who hadn’t lived up to expectations. Jiang Chen on the other hand, only showed a hint of a smile with a slightly odd expression. It was as if he didn’t resent this distribution plan and thought that being excluded from the earth rank herbs wasn’t a big deal whatsoever.
“Brother Chen, what do you think?”
“Gaoqi, calm down. Their fists are stronger, for now, so the distribution method is naturally up to them. But who knows what the final distribution will turn out to be?” A mysterious smile appeared on his face, but he refused to explain. Turning his head to Ling Bi’er, he said, “Senior sister, let’s see if we can find any Jaderoot on the first platform. We just have to find one and we’ll have gathered all the ingredients for the antidote.”
“Mm, junior brother, it’s all thanks to your hard work.”
Elder Xiang Gan’s sonorous voice sounded out at this time. “Alright, the origin realm cultivators can go harvest the spirit herbs on the first platform. They will follow the same rules we do.”
Hearing this, the origin realm cultivators stepped forward one by one.