The Sword Spirit thought about it . "Perhaps… maybe . "
Chu Yang pondered over it . He said, "Using the antidote to threaten me… maybe a little too simple . That should only be a small part of the plan…"
The moment he said that, Chu Yang became enthusiastic all of a sudden . "Tell me about the symptoms of a stroke . Even if I use the Spiritual Spring Water to delay the attack, it would still occur eventually, right? If he tries to poison me and I get poisoned as a result, isn't that a very normal turn of events?"
The Sword Spirit had a wry smile . "Even making use of that, you're really devious!"
Chu Yang said, "I'm being poisoned, how could I be considered devious?"
And then he asked, "I'm the only one poisoned, right? Qingwu is fine?"
The Sword Spirit had a wry smile as he replied, "Wu Jue Cheng is also someone of status . Do you think he will do something like that to a young girl for no reason?"
Chu Yang snorted . "That's not necessarily true! I don't trust any of them now . "
Chu Yang's heart was only set at ease after getting the Sword Spirit's definite answer that Mo Qingwu was not poisoned .
A contemplative Sword Spirit then said, "However, compared to you being poisoned, there's something more important . Now that Wu Jue Cheng is here, we cannot let him go! Even if we end up fighting with him, we cannot avoid the battle!"
Chu Yang's brows drew together . Something came to his mind immediately and he took in a sharp breath of air . "The sword intent?"
"Yes," answered the Sword Spirit, "I sensed the presence of the sword intent on Wu Jue Cheng . "
Chu Yang's facial muscles spasmed . This was a troublesome matter indeed . "How can we get it back?"
"We have three options to choose from," the Sword Spirit went on to elaborate, "The first is to capture Wu Jue Cheng and extract the sword intent from him . He has most likely only subdued it temporarily for his own use but is unable to refine it for cultivation . It is impossible for other people to refine the Nine Tribulations sword intent . "
"Capture Wu Jue Cheng?" Chu Yang let out a wry laugh . "Let's just go on to the second option . "
"The second option is to kill Wu Jue Cheng!" The Sword Spirit had a sneaky laugh . "The sword intent will then be dispelled from his body and we can collect it thereafter . "
Chu Yang was rather speechless by his suggestion . "You might as well not have said anything! Just Wu Jue Cheng's level of cultivation alone would mean that killing him is close to impossible . Moreover… he's Supreme Martial Artist Chen Feng's successor! And it's obvious that Supreme Martial Artist Chen Feng dotes on him a lot, so much so that he would resort to subterfuge to swap him out of the Nine Tribulations heavens nourishing process!"
"If Wu Jue Cheng dies, do you think Supreme Martial Artist Chen Feng would just let the matter rest? And Supreme Martial Artist Chen Feng and Supreme Martial Artist Liu Yun are husband and wife… Am I supposed to go up against Chen Feng and Liu Yun with my current level of cultivation? Let's just go on to the third option!"
Chu Yang didn't know whether to laugh or cry .
"The third option… is to reveal your identity as the Nine Tribulations Sword Master and use the Nine Tribulations Sword to absorb the sword intent . " As the Sword Spirit spoke, he himself started to sport a wry smile . "And it has to be done within a distance of 3,300 meters . "
Chu Yang had a look of resignation . "This third option is making my legs shake even more… Is there a fourth option?"
"No! There are only three options . " The Sword Spirit was very clear-cut in his answer .
"F*ck!" A speechless Chu Yang looked to the heavens . "Isn't this friggin' trying to scam me? With my pathetic cultivation level, while it's enough for me to rule the Lower Three Heavens, but… asking me to kill Wu Jue Cheng? Don't you think this is asking too much from me?"
The Sword Spirit said docilely, "But you have super experts with you, right…"
Chu Yang was speechless to the max . He glared at the Sword Spirit and sighed heavily before he straight up left the Nine Tribulations Space .
He didn't want to talk to the Sword Spirit anymore!
They were about to reach their destination .
The finals of the Medicine Banquet had never been open to the public to spectate — this was a rule! But even so, the place was still teeming with people today .
Snow swirled and floated down from the sky while the ground was bustling with activity…
Chu Yang leaned toward Mo Qingwu and whispered anxiously to her, "Qingwu, when I go in later, your Teacher will come to look for you . Remember to tell him these three words —'Wu Jue Cheng is here'… Let him pass the message to Feng and Yue too . You mustn't let anyone else hear you! Do you understand?"
Bewilderment flashed in Mo Qingwu's eyes but she nodded affirmatively nonetheless . "Don't worry, Big Brother Chu Yang! I will definitely get it done!"
Then, Chu Yang turned and headed in the direction of the competition venue .
Behind him, Mo Qingwu raised her little fists and shouted while bouncing up and down, "Big Brother Chu Yang! Go get them!"
Everyone around her raised their eyebrows at her .
But the young girl didn't care in the least .
With a smile, Chu Yang walked through the doors guarded by the Medicine Valley staff .
The other nine pharmacists that made the cut the other day were also present . When they saw Chu Yang walking in, everyone had a grim expression on their faces, their extreme wariness of him apparent .
Although they had had one round of experience in the Medicine Banquet before, compared to the young man in front of them, they truly didn't feel an ounce of the possibility of victory!
His stellar results of double the output with half the amount of time spent during the last round had pretty much eroded the self-confidence of these nine pharmacists to nothing!
And this was the finals, which held an even bigger significance — it was directly linked to whom the title of 'top pharmacist of the world' would be conferred upon! The forging of the Heaven Nourishing Jade would begin immediately after the finals, and once it was forged, the nourishing of the heavens would commence on the third day!
Bringing to completion of the grandest task in Nine Heavens continent history — Nourishing the heavens!
This honor would be bestowed upon the champion of this competition!
The snow fell heavier and heavier until one couldn't even see clearly the person opposite them anymore .
Such a heavy snowfall was truly a rare sight .
Amongst the white flurry of snow, the finals of the Medicine Banquet finally commenced!
The high priest of the Medicine Valley personally came to welcome the ten of them into the competition venue which had been specially prepared .
When Chu Yang walked in, as if their hearts were connected, he looked back and spotted a red figure moving about in a high spot in the faraway distance .
A clear and melodious voice could be heard from a distance .
"Chu Yang! Go for it!"
It was Mo Qingwu's voice .
An amused smile appeared on Chu Yang's lips .
This girl has finally shown her ambitions .
Actually calling me by name because she thinks I can't see her…
A smiling Chu Yang entered the competition venue .
Outside, Bu Liuqing, dressed in robes of blue, stood with his hands behind his back on top of a snow-covered tree . Mo Qingwu stood next to him, her petite form seeming even frailer in the snow .
In the freezing cold, the young girl breathed out warm air, her whole face red from agitation, but there was boundless tenderness in her heart .
I… called him by name!
I don't want to call him 'Big Brother Chu Yang' anymore, I want to call him 'Chu Yang'!
This would… sound more like… what a husband and wife addressed each other by . Hmph, I know that Big Sister Wu Qianqian has plans on him, does she think I can't tell… hmph… oh dear… this is so embarrassing…
The moment the young girl thought of the words 'husband and wife', she became so embarrassed that her whole body suddenly felt weak, as if she had a fever, and she almost fell off the tree .
Bu Liuqing got a shock and quickly grabbed hold of her, preventing her from falling from such a high distance .
Supreme Martial Artist Bu was unbelievably perplexed . Even though he hadn't tried to dramatically increase his little disciple's cultivation for the time being, she was already a first-grade Martial Saint by now… How was it that she could still almost fall off a tree when she already had such a high level of cultivation…
. . .
With the high priest leading the way, the ten pharmacists entered the competition area . The high priest then led them into a gigantic palace that looked almost like it was made out of a whole mountain .
The entire way there was filled with guard outposts!
The outermost rim consisted of Monarch level and Emperor level experts acting as the first wall of defense . As they went further in and the boundary to be defended became smaller, the guards became those of Martial Saint level .
There were a total of nine lines of defense!
After they entered the palace, Chu Yang discovered that someone was standing in every corner outside of the palace . They stood at attention, their expressions stern and serious . The heavy snow had almost completely buried them!
It was obvious that they had already been here since at least a day before the finals, just guarding this empty venue, in case of someone infiltrating the place!
And every one of these guards was a Supreme Martial Artist!
Such watertight defense gave even Chu Yang an alarming feeling!
The moment they entered the grand hall of the palace, a gust of warm air suddenly greeted them, and the rich fragrance of flowers and herbs wafted over!
How would there be only ten thousand types of elixirs in the Medicine Banquet? There were easily hundreds of thousands of varieties! And there was definitely more than just one stalk for each type!
All within this grand hall!
Each type of elixir here could be considered a Heavenly Treasure! The majority of the Nine Super Clans' herb inventory that they had amassed for the past thousand years, the entire secret foundation of the Medicine Valley for the past thousand years, as well as all the Heavenly Treasures that the Zhuge Clan had collected for the past ten thousand years were all here!
Everything was here!
The number of elixirs here could easily let anybody who saw them have a mental breakdown from excitement alone!
None of the elixirs here were stored in cases . They were displayed as was, their roots, stems, flowers, leaves… everything was exposed . There were so many that when one looked over, they wouldn't even be able to see the end . Despite so, there was no risk of the medicinal potency being lost . In addition, they were neatly categorized by their medicinal properties . Even though the herbs were placed in close proximity with each other, it was as if a safe distance was being maintained between each herb and the next .
This was the most unique characteristic of a Heavenly Treasure — self-sufficiency! Only when a herb possessed such a characteristic could they earn the title of… Heavenly Treasure!
Furthermore, each and every stalk of herb here, under such circumstances, was still filled with vitality! Fresh buds peeked out from some, some had new branches growing, and some even had flowers budding on them…
Outside was a world of snow and ice but the tens of thousands of elixirs inside here were lush with life . Some even had flowers blooming!
Just like spring!
This was but a very normal dimension… There was absolutely nothing out of the ordinary here!
How was this possible?
Looking at the fresh flowers blooming, Chu Yang almost suspected that he was dreaming .
In the center of the grand hall, ten pillars stood erect . They spanned a diameter of close to three meters and boasted a height of fifteen to twenty meters . The pillars were made of an unknown material and emitted a dull brown glow . Atop each of the pillars sat a giant lotus!
There was a unique aura coming from all directions that was constantly being distilled into wisps of energy and absorbed by the giant lotuses .
With a stern and serious expression, the high priest cleared his throat and announced, "Everyone, it is the finals of the Medicine Banquet now! We are in the Great Heavens-Reversing Array now . The area, where everyone is standing, is the position of the eye of the array!"
"It has been 999 years since the great array has had its location finalized and the array set up! Using the amount of time that takes for one to return to its origin! During these 999 years, the great array has been buried underground, absorbing the spiritual energy of the universe and the essence of day and night; it has invaded the magnificence of the mountains and rivers, and breathed the spiritual essence of the great rivers… Only after 999 years can this array be formed . "