Let's discuss the problem with the qi generating pill's value.
As mentioned previously, a pharmacist's cultivation wasn't easy. The rate of successful pill refinement wasn't high. Even though the qi generating pill was the most common one, one pill was worth two gold. With such a large Gongyi Clan, not to mention a lone martial artist, the numbers of attracted martial artists were not small. If one wanted to supply the qi generating pill, how could there be an unlimited amount to offer?
Their salary was like this:
If they were of the Gongyi Clan's younger generation, a Blood Forging realm would get one qi a.s.sembling pill  a month, a Bone Forging realm got two per month, and a Meridian Condensing realm would switch to using qi linking pills;
If they were a martial artist attracted to the Gongyi Clan, then a Blood Forging realm wouldn't receive any qi generating pills, a Bone Forging realm got one qi generating pill a month, and a Meridian Condensing realm got two per month.
Even though it was like this, wanting to support so many people heavily bled the Gongyi Clan's resources. Calling this a salary was already very generous. If it were a small Family, only the younger generation of the innermost core would receive this kind of treatment. It was basically impossible for outsider martial artists.
One had to realize that medicinal pills were in short supply!
In addition, for martial artists who consumed qi generating pills, no matter how gifted or extraordinary, the limit was two to three pills a month. It simply wasn't possible to rely completely on qi generating pills for cultivation.
However, Gu Zuo discovered that his patron could do it.
Other martial artists could digest a pill in about ten days. Gongyi Tianheng eating a pill was like throwing a pebble into the water without even the sound of a splash. It would take at most fifteen minutes for him to completely absorb it.
Perhaps this was another powerful point of the Tiandu Body?
Similarly, it was because of this that Gu Zuo dared to maintain his confidence in his patron and did his best to refine medicine like an old ox , following him on this gamble.
Ah, on second thought, he still had crazy fits of rage and jealousy…
Naturally, after Gongyi Tianheng heard Gu Zuo's proposal, he cheerfully agreed. When he saw through Gu Zuo's concealed thoughts, he smiled and didn't mention it.
The truth wasn't what his little pharmacist imagined.
Digesting the qi generating pill… The Tiandu Body definitely wasn't the reason, or rather, it wasn't the entire reason.
From the first time Gu Zuo refined pills, he obtained the perfect grade qi generating pills. He himself hadn't yet sampled different kinds of qi generating pills. So he didn't know that the Tianlong Guard under Gongyi Tianheng's administration received the benefits of a perfect grade qi generating pill each month. Their senses couldn't be more clear.
The higher the grade of the qi generating pill, the easier it was to absorb and the ampler the energy within. After using a perfect grade pill, being unable to use it again was simply a kind of torture.
Gongyi Tianheng once used a dose of high grade qi generating pills, and contrasted its effects with the perfect grade pills.
The medicinal power of those high grade qi generating pills simultaneously promoted the gathering of his true qi and also brought about a slightly woozy sensation. In the process of continuously using his cultivation method, the things that caused this woozy sensation were slowly expelled through his pores. At this point in time, he developed a theory.
Although taking medicinal pills was faster than absorbing natural qi for cultivation, there were, nevertheless, impurities within the pills, which needed to be expelled by using a cultivation method. The higher the grade of the medicinal pill, the less impurities there were and the faster one could absorb its medicinal powers.
Martial artists in the past definitely weren't incapable of digesting even more qi generating pills. Rather, they would just acc.u.mulate qi and expel impurities at the same time. Thus, they wasted a lot of time… However, this method was still faster than simply absorbing natural qi for cultivating, and it made martial artists scramble for medicinal pills.
Seeing Gu Zuo busily rush about, Gongyi Tianheng faintly smiled.
— His little pharmacist really could be counted as his biggest chance.
Under a big tree, Gu Zuo suddenly opened his eyes.
In a split second, an extremely slender and faintly indiscernible silver needle appeared and shot out. Like a ray of light, it hurtled towards a block of stone that was about a meter tall.
Soon after, there was the sound of a bang and that huge rock suddenly exploded into pieces!
Gongyi Tianheng, who stood on the side, saw this and praised: “Good!”
Gu Zuo's expression immediately turned joyous: “Young master Tianheng, I did it!”
Tianheng laughed: “Sure enough, the Spirit Piercing Needle is fearsome. That strike just now is comparable to a full-powered strike of a Houtian seventh stage martial artist. Moreover, it's completely silent. Even if it was me, if I didn't pay complete attention from the start, I couldn't have easily discovered it.”
Gu Zuo's face reddened: “I also didn't expect that using a bit of psychic power in the Spirit Piercing Needle would have this kind of might. If I could've layered the psychic power before, it should've been even more powerful!”
The current him was now a person with the ability to defend himself! Although his martial technique was no good, the Spirit Piercing Needle could be considered an essential sneak attack tool for killing and pillaging in any situation !
Tianheng asked in a gentle tone: “That Spirit Piercing Needle…”
Gu Zuo said with some pity: “The one I used no longer exists.”
He wasn't resigned to it, but he didn't think it was odd. A martial artist attacked with martial skills full of true qi, and the true qi within couldn't be reclaimed. When he examined his patron's body and condensed medicinal properties within his eyes, he used almost none of it. This was already very good, so he couldn't insist on even more.
He also wasn't a person who was too greedy.
Gongyi Tianheng pondered for a moment: “How many Spirit Piercing Needles can Ah Zuo condense with his remaining psychic power?”
Gu Zuo a.s.sessed: “Eighteen needles.”
Tianheng nodded: “Since we know about the Spirit Piercing Needle's power, Ah Zuo, you just need to upgrade your application speed. You must accomplish this move with a thought so that the Spirit Piercing Needle can travel according to your will. As for double layering or the might of several layered needles, you should take advantage of careful familiarization. In my time as a martial artist, whenever I extracted my true qi and later restored it, my tolerance grew larger and my recovery speed became faster. A great number of things are interconnected. We may a.s.sume that psychic power is also just like this.”
Gu Zuo answered straightforwardly: “Rest a.s.sured, young master Tianheng!”
Gongyi Tianheng smiled as he ruffled his hair. He took a qi generating pill and quickly went back to practicing.
Time quickly pa.s.sed. In the blink of an eye, it was several months later.
From taking one qi generating pill a day, Tianheng would later take ten a day — Ten pills. The acupoints within his body were like gluttonous monsters that were never satisfied, like whales voraciously swallowing all the natural qi available.
This kind of spectacle was thoroughly shocking. In particular, Dragon One, who stayed beside Gongyi Tianheng from the very beginning, was beyond astonished.
Gu Zuo steadily supplied qi generating pills, mostly for the Tianlong Guard — Apart from the arrangements of a small number of major affairs, all other missions were halted and changed to collecting all kinds of medicinal ingredients from across the Cangyun Empire and ama.s.sed at the villa. Because they worked cautiously, the business deals between the Ghost Division and Gongyi Tianheng were on the right track. At this time, the Ghost Division made several attempts at tracking him down, but ultimately, all clues were eliminated and vanished under the chess pieces of Tianheng's administration…
The value of Tianheng's martial strength rose to an inconceivable degree.
Gu Zuo clearly saw that his patron's body had already condensed four hundred fifty nine bone pearls, with only a hundred fifty three left. Then he'd reach his body's limits and would have to prepare to enter the next stage.
This seemed like too much, but one only had to remember that the previous four hundred bone pearls were condensed within a short several months, then one wouldn't feel it was so difficult.
Besides, as time pa.s.sed, the condensation of bone pearls sped up and the stockpile of true qi increased in size.
The current situation was that the true qi within Tianheng was incomparably vigorous. He prepared to develop six sets of bone pearls within his body. With that in itself, his strength would be multiplied six times over — And his strength would be far stronger than the great majority of martial artists of the same rank.
If the current Gongyi Tianheng went to the Ghost Division stronghold to take part in their training of killing machines, then it'd probably be just “killing people like slaughtering dogs.”
What's more, Gu Zuo's progress wasn't the least bit small.
He could simultaneously carry out all three steps of the Spirit Piercing Needle. He could use Spirit Forging to quickly turn the smoke-like psychic power into gelatinous psychic power. He could use Spirit Congealing to extract the psychic power and turn it into a silver needle. And he could use the Spirit Piercing to… Gu Zuo could already achieve what Tianheng stated. The silver needle followed his will and, with a thought, he could shoot the needle from any direction, angle, or trajectory.
He also discovered that the silver needle was merely the first stage. When he ama.s.sed countless silver needles, it formed a sharp silver drill-like device. It could bring about great destructive power that far surpa.s.sed the silver needle.
This Spirit Piercing Needle could be used to attack physical objects as well as be turned into a partially intangible attack on an opponent's Tianfu Acupoint!
Once the Tianfu Acupoint was damaged, the opponent would be turned into an idiot!
After Gu Zuo thoroughly understood that the
This was practically a weapon that could save his life! Unless if he lost consciousness or if it was a Xiantian martial artist, no one could approach him!
Finally, now he didn't lack the strength to truss up a chicken… Although he wasn't yet an adult, he finally had a sense of satisfaction in having power. Perhaps, this was the feeling of a powerful man? Even if he wasn't a warrior who fought for a cause, he was still considered to have some sense of security.
After this, Gu Zuo's enthusiasm amplified. He used his cultivation method, practiced the Spirit Piercing Needle, and refined medicine around the clock, all for the sake of nursing his patron's health — If this kind of continuous upgrading continued, then the journey back to the modern era wasn't so unattainable.
However, the time that the Azure Dragon Pool opened was fast approaching.
It was to be on the afternoon of the third day from now.
Before the Clan's top eight fighters received permission, they had to go to the Cangyun Imperial Palace tomorrow. They had to pay their respects to the Cangyun Emperor and accept the royal family's test.
Only those who were finally capable of pa.s.sing were then able to get a placement!
The allotted placements of the Azure Dragon Pool were priceless. So long as a martial artist devoted their heart to the martial path, then they wouldn't easily give up.
This year, Gongyi Tianheng gave it everything he had. All of it was precisely for this one day.
In the afternoon.
Dragon-scaled horses were gathered just outside, and the bronze chariot was made ready.
With his hands clasped behind his back, Gongyi Tianheng walked out. Dragon One and Gu Zuo walked behind him to the left and right.
In a secret location, Dragon Two lay in wait. Out in the open, two hundred Tianlong guards stood before their horses and bowed in greetings!
At this time, they would leave for the Gongyi mansion!
Dragon One took the lead and marched in front. He turned around and kneeled, fanaticism etched across his whole face. In a clear voice, he shouted: “We wish for the young master's great victory and return home!”
Numerous Tianlong guards also identically kneeled: “We wish for the young master's great victory and return home!”
Gongyi Tianheng smiled: “We march!”
Many Tianlong guards said: “We obey — As the young master commands!”
Gu Zuo saw this clearly, and his heart welled with pa.s.sion.
At long last, this day was here.
If his patron was able to succeed… His mind had a premonition.
Gongyi Tianheng, just like a hidden dragon who'd been silent for so long, once he broke through the abyss, he would soar about the highest heavens!
 The author used 聚气丹, which means acc.u.mulating/a.s.sembling instead of generating.
 老黄牛 - Lao huang niu, a worker who is industrious and obedient.
 居家旅行杀人放火 - Ju jia (in the home) lv xing (on the road) sha ren (murder) fang huo (arson).
 Two things: 牛 (slang for awesome), 法门 (Buddhist term of entering the path of enlightenment, nowadays it refers to studying ethics.)
T/N: Attention readers, I have several things to say. Also, surprise on a double weekend update! :)
First of all, thank you everyone for keeping with me so far. This is the final chapter of the first volume! It has been a pleasure to translate this story. For the next few days, I'll be taking the time to review, edit, and standardize my translations thus far. If there was anything you read that you feel that I could change, please let me know in the comments.
For example, I'm considering how I should be capitalizing certain named objects. Things like people, cities, or certain attacks are already capitalized, but should I extend this to all named objects? Let me know about this or other things down below.
Second, I read each and every one of your comments. And though I don't respond, it's mostly because I want to avoid clogging up the comments section and over inflating the number of true comments. Nowadays, I usually reserve replies to direct critiques or suggested corrections.
Third, I'm not sure if it's more conducive to generating a discussion here on this blog, or creating a thread on Novel Updates. It'll be up to you guys to decide.
Finally, as this is another milestone for me, I'd like to remind everyone that this translation is based on the hard work of the original author. Please consider supporting them!
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