"Hmm? Young Master, where did you get this mini cauldron? Why is it puffing smoke itself?" Lil Ruo asked in surprise.
"Hehe, it's nothing. Let's eat." Xiao Chen smiled and said. He picked up a piece of vegetable with his chopsticks and put it into her bowl.
In the afternoon, Xiao Chen had washed the mini cauldron clean. He put it on the table and sized it up again and again. Just now, he tried to burn it, smash it with stone, and even slash it with Unsullied. But none of the actions dealt a trace of damage to the cauldron. He did not know what material it was made of. It looked like wood, yet it was incredibly hard.
He was now exactly in need of a cauldron to refine elixirs. He shook his head with a smile and said, "I might as well name you Wonder Wood Cauldron."
Although his attainment in alchemy was not as high as that in formations, his elixir-refining technique was not bad. He took out some herbs that he collected in the mountain during the test several days ago, and adeptly split them into several batches.
Two hours later, the elixir was refined. He opened the lid as the fragrance of the elixir immediately suffused the room.
Xiao Chen was happy and surprised as if he had gotten the most precious treasure. The special material of the Wonder Wood Cauldron enabled his Divine Sense to easily penetrate the cauldron to control the duration and degree of heating; moreover, it took him much less time to refine an elixir. He really had run into a treasure.
The elixir he refined was called Energy Pill, an elixir used to restore True Qi. He had noticed a problem while he was fighting against that giant bear a few days ago—his True Qi was always insufficient.
His cultivation was only at Lv 1 Qi Refining Realm, so his True Qi storage was not big enough. However, it took a considerable amount of True Qi to play the Dragon Roar Palm. In a fight, his True Qi would run out after playing several moves of the Dragon Roar Palm.
But he also knew that the Energy Pill could not fundamentally solve the problem. The most important thing was to increase his cultivation as soon as possible. Otherwise, he could not even defeat Ye Shaochong, not to mention the Lv 9 Qi Refining Realm Mo Yu.
It was almost at dusk; Elder Wu was still worriedly gazing at the three big bags of medicinal materials. At this moment, Elder Song and Elder Liu finally came back. Upon seeing them, Elder Wu immediately stood up and growled, "Why do you two come back so late?"
Elder Liu forced a smile and said, "Something went wrong on the way." He then noticed the three bags on the table and exclaimed. "What is this?"
Elder Wu sighed deeply, threw his hands up, and said, "Tell me about it. The Nine Provinces Swordsmanship Competition is coming. The elder of the Elixir Room wants more Energy-fortifying Pills. He said that we have to refine these three bags of materials by the end of the month."
"There's only 20 days left. It's not enough!" Elder Song said hurriedly.
"Then what? The elder of the Elixir Room is a Rank Two pharmacist. Even the five major elders dare not to offend him. What's your plan? Return these bags to the Black Dragon Peak?" Elder Wu turned the whites of his eyes up and said.
"Alas. We can't even have a rest. And they didn't pay us enough Spiritual Stones every month. What now? How about leaving them to the disciples?"
"Are you joking? If they fail to refine the elixirs, we, three miserable old men, will stay on the Sunset Peak for the rest of our lives!"
"Alas..." The three elders sighed in unison.
The next day, before dawn, Xiao Chen was already sitting cross-legged under a Snow Chaste Tree and was running the cultivation method to absorb the Spiritual Qi from heaven and earth. Thanks to the richer Spiritual Qi in this place, his Mystic Cyan Cultivation Method was working at a certain extent. If he were a ship, his home would be a pond-turned lake, it now could basically carry him but was unable to let him sail.
When he was concentrating on cultivating, he suddenly heard footsteps from the outside. This courtyard was quite remote, why were there people even before it was dawn? He listened attentively and then vaguely heard the conversation of two or three men.
"Have you heard? The Skygale Sect recruited a disciple with six Spiritual Meridians. She's called Huangfu Xin or something."
"Are you sure? Six Spiritual Meridians? How is it possible?"
"How is it not possible?" The Sect Leader, Tiangu Zi, had personally married her to his first disciple, Qin Xiu. It's said that they will get married after this Nine Provinces Swordsmanship Competition. They will fete every sect with a grand wedding ceremony and show off their strengths."
"That sounds fair. Qin Xiu is in the Foundation Building Realm. In the last Nine Provinces Swordsmanship Competition, none of the disciples from the Nine-cloud Sect or Cold-billow Sword Sect could defeat him. I think Mo Yu is nothing in front of him. Mo Yo can only put on airs in front of us."
"All right, all right. Stop talking. Let's go back now lest the elders notice us missing."
As the footsteps fading away, Xiao Chen clenched his fists tightly, cracking knuckles. He then punched the Snow Chaste Tree as the petals rustled and fell to the ground.
"Skygale Sect... Qin Xiu..."
At the crack of dawn, Xiao Chen was holding a broken sword in his room. This was the very sword that Qin Xiu had broken in the Xiao Family, the Teal Blade.
A few moments later, the sun had risen. He went outside and found the sunlight a bit dazzling. The dews hanging on the grasses were glimmering under the sunlight.
Also, there was the palm print he left on the Snow Chaste Tree.
"Young Master, you're up so early." A door creaked open, and then Lil Ruo walked out. She was inhaling the fresh mountain air.
Xiao Chen nodded and smiled slightly, saying, "Yes. I have classes to attend to later. I'm leaving now. See you."
"Well, come back early at noon, Young Master."
On the way, he met the three princes and saw them looking listless with heavy dark circles. They looked as if they had over-indulged themselves. He said, "At such a young age, how can you be so listless? What have you done last night?"
Prince Zhao said with a bitter smile, "What else can we do? We had three plates of Fried Loquats, which led to a whole night's toilet war..."
"Are we still going to eat that thing today?" Prince Qi asked feebly.
"Yeah. It'll be fine if we eat more of them. Cultivators should be able to eat all kinds of food and can digest all kinds of hazardous things..."
Xiao Chen shook his head. With Lil Ruo, he didn't need to worry about his diet.
The Sunset Peak had liberal arts courses. The classroom was a big hall and not far from the mess hall. It looked pretty imposing. When the dozens of students had seated, in walked a teal-robed elder with two children behind him. One child held a thick stack of notebooks and the other carried a parcel.
The teal-robed elder walked to the front of the hall, swept around to count the numbers, and took a notebook from the child on his left. He said, "You can call me Elder Song. Now begins the first class, the rules of the Three Pure Sect."
He licked his finger, opened the notebook in his hand and said, "The first commandment: Honor the teacher and respect his teaching, and no cheating or killing the teacher. The second commandment: Recognize the good and the evil, and no associating with disciples of the devil's sects. The third commandment: Respect and love fellow disciples, and no fighting or bullying..."
In the end, the students were all sleepy after an hour of his lecturing. Finally, Elder Song had to cough heavily to wake up the three students who had fallen asleep.
"Fried... Fried Loquats!" Prince Zhao suddenly raised his head, rubbed his eyes, looked out of the window and murmured, "Is... Is the class over?"
The students around chuckled. Elder Song walked to him and threw the notebook on his desk, saying, "Young friend, please read aloud what I just lectured!"
"Okay..." Prince Zhao stood up and noticed the two friends beside winking at him. He coughed and said, "First, recognize the good and the evil, no fighting or bullying master..."
The classroom burst out laughing. "Laugh not!" Elder Song glared at the others and thundered. "The three of you, go back and copy the sect rules 100 times. Hand the copies over to me tomorrow morning." He then angrily walked back to the front of the hall.
At this point, a red-robed elder in and then he walked to the front of the hall barehanded. At that time, he moved his fingers to conjure a palm-sized ancient Chinese cauldron and many other miscellaneous items on the desk.
Every disciple's eyes lit up. It was much more interesting to see so many things appear out of nowhere like magic than to listen to the dry sect rules.
Xiao Chen was also a bit shocked. What was going on? After a Cultivator reached the Nascent Soul Realm, he would be able to generate his Violet Manor Nascent Soul. Smaller Violet Manor Nascent Soul could be used to store items, and bigger ones could trap an enemy or temporarily hide himself to escape from enemies. Some Cultivators could even cultivate their Violet Manor Nascent Souls into a Plane in his body. But this elder couldn't have reached the Nascent Soul Realm.
The red-robed elder coughed and said, "You can call me Elder Liu. As disciples of a Cultivators' sect, the elixir-refining technique is essential. Now, I'll tell you something about it."
He said a bunch of esoteric theories and then picked up the cauldron, saying, "As you can see, this is only a normal mini-cauldron. But, the secrets of the heaven and earth lay inside it. Now, I'll show you how to refine an elixir."
After saying so, he threw the cauldron up and it suspended in the air. The students exclaimed upon seeing this. This was the psychokinesis of the Immortals.
"The mortals need fire to refine elixirs. But as Cultivators, we use the power of our Energies." Elder Liu sent some medicinal materials and minerals into the cauldron while speaking. He then channeled his Energy through his arms, and white smoke started to emit from the top of the cauldron.
He carefully controlled the duration and degree of heating while he was introducing the alchemy techniques because otherwise, a minor mistake might turn the materials in the cauldron into charred coke, and embarrassed himself in front of all the new disciples.
About one hour later, his forehead sweated heavily and the students were watching attentively. Half an hour later, the cauldron started to effuse the fragrance of elixir.
Elder Liu smiled and said, "Done! Unlid!"
Xiao Chen sighed inwardly. It was supposed to be an elixir of good quality, but this elder was not calm enough and hurried in the final step. As a result, the temperature was not high enough, and the outcome was useless.
A rough but spherical elixir in greyish white slowly floated out from the cauldron. The students acclaimed upon seeing this. This was amazing. Those messes now became an elixir.
Elder Liu took the elixir and said with a smile, "This is the rudimentary Qi-refining Pill. You can smell it." He then gave the elixir to the child beside him.
The child gave the elixir to a student, who then passed it to other students to have a close look. Everyone praised it. Finally, when it was passed into Prince Zhao's hand, he sized it up and asked, "Can I eat it?" At that moment, he was ready to throw it to his mouth.
The faces of Elder Song and Elder Liu changed upon seeing this. Elder Liu said, "Don't!"
Prince Zhao frowned and said, "What? Are they meant to be eaten?" He again wanted to throw it to his mouth.
Elder Liu shouted, "You can't eat it! This one is for demonstration only. I saved many steps in the progress. It will do nothing good for your body. Give it to me."
"Okay. I won't eat it then." Prince Zhao returned the elixir to the child.
Xiao Chen shook his head and smiled inwardly. It would be more than useless to take this elixir. The proportion of the materials was totally wrong. Taking this elixir would be worse than having a plate of Fried Loquats.
The two elders secretly wiped some cold sweat. Elder Liu looked around and said with a smile, "Now, I want to ask one of you to come here and demonstrate."
The students lowered their heads upon hearing this. Who could learn such a complicated skill after only having watched it once?
Elder Liu's eyes moved slowly in the crowd and found that Xiao Chen was not as nervous as the others. He smiled, walked to Xiao Chen, looked at Xiao Chen and the girl beside him, and finally said to the girl with a smile, "Would you please demonstrate to the others?"