Early one morning, Yang Kai’s door was knocked on and Dong Qing Yan excitedly rushed in, coming right up to him, “Cou…”
“What Cou?” Yang Kai stared at her and flicked her forehead.
Dong Qing Yan spat out her tongue, hastily straightened herself up like a noble lady, and commanded, “Escort Yang, accompany this Young Lady out for a trip!”
In the end, she was still the Dong Family’s first Young Lady. The Dong Family and Yang Family were in-laws, so if someone heard Dong Qing Yan call out Yang Kai’s name, they would certainly be able to guess Yang Kai identity.
So after some discussion, the two decided that Yang Kai would play the role of Dong Qing Yan’s guard.
Great Young Ladies who went out traveling would always have a few guards and servants around, so this identity was reasonable.
Looking outside for a moment, Yang Kai lightly refused, “You can go play, I won’t be accompanying you today!”
But Dong Qing Yan was not deterred and instead just le out a giggle, “Escort Yang, do you not want to enter that place anymore?”
Yang Kai’s expression instantly changed.
“Is today the day?”
These past few days, Yang Kai had constantly been asking her just how she planned to let him approach the Pill Saint’s Peak, but Dong Qing Yan had always refused to elaborate, saying that the time had not yet come, until today, which allowed Yang Kai to finally see a ray of hope.
“Do you want to go out with this Young Lady now?” Dong Qing Yan said with a haughty look of triumph on her face.
Yang Kai quickly stopped cultivating and got down from his bed.
In the town, Dong Qing Yan darted back and forth inside the crowds like a fish agilely swimming through a stream as Yang Kai, dressed up as a guard, carried various items in his hands. His expression was completely blank, as he quietly followed closely behind her.
Anyone who saw him would naturally assume he was Dong Qing Yan’s attendant.
Arriving at the eastern part of town, Dong Kai Yan’s cute little face flushed with excitement. Yang Kai could even hear the sound of her heartbeat coming from within her chest as she took a deep breath and clutched her hands in front of her, only managing to calm herself after a long time.
Looking around, Yang Kai discovered that there was a big crowd gathered here, and many of these people’s chests were embroidered with a kind of unique flower badge. Each of them had one, two or, three petals and were gold, silver, or white in colour.
These people, all of them were Alchemists.
Earth Grade Mid to Top-Rank Alchemists were the majority, but there were also many at the Common Grade. All together at least two hundred of them had gathered, creating an extremely bustling atmosphere.
At some point Dong Qing Yan had also taken out a rusty ornament, a single petal silver flower, and proudly pinned it onto her chest, as if she wanted to let everyone here know she was also a Common Grade Mid-Rank Alchemist.
“What are you doing?” Yang Kai whispered, faintly feeling something was not quite right.
“Just wait! Whether you can go to the place you want to will depend on what happens next.” Dong Qing Yan responded softly. Her cute face for once was filled with seriousness.
Yang Kai frowned. Closing his eyes he released his Divine Sense and began listening to the nearby Alchemists talk.
After a moment, his expression became awkward.
The reason these people had come from all corners of the world and gathered here was actually in order to worship Medicine King’s Valley’s Hidden Cloud Peak Elder Xiao Fu Sheng as disciples and study the secrets of his Alchemy techniques.
Yang Kai opened his eyes and looked towards Dong Qing Yan, asking, “Did you come here to become a disciple?”
Dong Qing Yan smiled, “Of course, Grandmaster Xiao’s disciple recruitment is a once in a lifetime opportunity. The reason I escaped from home at this time was precisely for this reason!”
As she said this, Dong Qing Yan looked piteously towards Yang Kai, “Escort Yang, you’re not going to go tell my brother are you?”
“I just want to know what relationship this has with my goal.”
“Hidden Cloud Peak is not far from your objective, if you can enter there…” Dong Qing Yan quietly implied.
Listening to this, Yang Kai’s brow twitched. Indeed, if he could enter Hidden Cloud Peak, then maybe he could find an to enter the Pill Saint’s peak, after all, the two peaks were only separated by two small hills.
“But I don’t understand Alchemy.”
Dong Qing Yan chuckled, “Grandmaster Xiao’s disciple recruitment notice clearly stated that even if you do not understand Alchemy, you would still have a chance. The only thing that matter is if you have the appropriate aptitude.”
“Mr. Yang…” Dong Qing Yan lightly clutched Yang Kai’s arm, “Since I’ve thought so much about you your situation, please don’t go tell my brother about this. Besides, if I can successfully worship Grandmaster Xiao as my master, it will be a great honor for the family, and even if father learns about it after, he will only praise me, so don’t do any thankless things.”
Yang Kai lightly said, “If you can succeed I’ll have nothing to say.”
“I’m sure I can.” Dong Qing Yan said, full of confidence. “For this day, I have done a lot of preparation. The only thing I’m uncertain about is if you can come too.”
Hearing this, Yang Kai could only shake his head secretly.
He had not thought the method Dong Qing Yan spoke about was actually this. And although this method was good, Yang Kai was not at all confident. After all, he had never even touched the subject Alchemy, so how could he pass a test created by this Grandmaster Xiao?”
But now that it had come to this, he could only grit his teeth and try. In any case, it was not like he had anything to lose.
As time passed, more and more Alchemists gathered. Each and every one of them were filled with anticipation, and similarly to Dong Qing Yan, their faces were filled with tension and expectation. Some of them even had expressions of reverence and worship.
It could easily be seen just how highly these people regarded the chance to worship Hidden Cloud Peak’s Xiao Fu Sheng as their master.
As Yang Kai listened to the surrounding conversations, he learned a great deal of things.
Xiao Fu Sheng was actually the most prestigious figure in all of Medicine King’s Valley. His achievements in the field of Alchemy were even greater than the current Valley Lord of Medicine King’s Valley. He was also one of the only Mysterious Grade High-Rank Alchemists in the entire world.
Above Mysterious Grade was Spirit Grade, a height which had never once before been reached.
Xiao Fu Sheng was a man obsessed with Alchemy, and although he occupied a Medicine King’s Valley peak, he had never accepted any disciples nor did he have a wife or children. His entire life had been dedicated to the pursuit of the Alchemic Path.
Within the Alchemist community, Xiao Fu Sheng held a position of unparalleled respect.
A few months ago, when word came out from Medicine King’s Valley that Grandmaster Xiao was going to recruit disciples, the entire world shook. Countless Alchemists began frantically rushing over. Each of them wanted to worship him as their master and inherit his mantle.
Both the Eight Great Families and the First-Class Sects also wanted to send their own prized Alchemists to attend, but they were all rejected by Master Xiao.
Finally today, in Medicine King’s Valley town, a unique test designed by Master Xiao himself would be held, and anyone who managed to pass would be granted the right to become a disciple of the Hidden Cloud Peak.
Grandmaster Xiao was not concerned with the background of his would-be disciples. No matter where you come from or from what kind of force, as long as you possessed the required aptitude, you would be allowed learn his Alchemic knowledge.
The only condition was that you could not be more than twenty years old.
So the Alchemist who had gathered here were all from the younger generation. Some of those who came, in order to apprentice in Hidden Cloud Peak, were even prepared to forego attending the upcoming Alchemy Conference.
Time continued to pass by.
While standing behind Dong Qing Yan, Yang Kai also continued monitoring the surroundings and secretly observed if anything was happening.
After a very long wait, a commotion suddenly arose from the crowd. The Medicine King’s Valley disciples had finally appeared.
These Medicine King’s Valley disciples were not direct disciples of Grandmaster Xiao, but were instead Alchemists from other Peaks who had been commissioned to handle the administration of today’s test.
Not far away, a platform had been set up in advance. It was around this more than ten meter long stage that all the Alchemists who had come to attend today’s test gathered.
Four Medicine King’s Valley disciples slowly made their way towards this high platform, headed by a middle-aged man walking forward in a proud and aloof manner. His chest was embroidered with a three petal golden flower, and his face was adorned with a serious expression, not disturbed in the slightest by the surrounding crowd, and his hands held a large pot of pills. A burst of noise suddenly erupted within the crowd.
“It’s Medicine King’s Valley’s Qin Ze, he’s only thirty five years old but has already become a Heaven Grade Top-Rank Alchemist!”
“He is the genius of this generation’s Medicine King’s Valley disciples; I heard he was even likely to become the next Valley Lord.”
“Shh, be quiet…”
Qin Ze soon boarded the high platform and placed the large pot of pills onto a table. The three other Medical King’s Valley disciples also came to a stop behind him.
Sweeping his eyes over the crowd, Qin Ze cupped his fists said, “Gentlemen, for Uncle Xiao’s disciple recruitment test, this Qin Ze will be your invigilator!”
The great importance placed upon Alchemists wherever they went caused all of them to have eyes on top of their head’s, coupled with them perennially being in retreat to study and perform alchemy resulted in many of them not understanding the subtleties of social etiquettes, such as bothering to greet other people.
As an Alchemist genius, this Qin Ze’s arrogant and detached demeanor was even more pronounced
After saying a few words, he simply turned around and removed the lid of the giant pot, allowing a strange medicinal fragrance to immediately spread out. As everyone present took a sniff of this aroma, each of them felt their spirits lurch.
“The test is very simple! These pills here are something my Uncle Xiao personally refined for today. Anyone who wants to become a disciple of Hidden Cloud Peak must swallow one of these pills and completely refine its medicinal effects. If you can do so, you will have passed the test. You may begin!”
Apparently finished, Qin Ze moved aside and allowed the three young Medicine King’s Valley disciples to step forward. Each of them watched the crowd with arrogant and indifferent eyes.
Of the hundreds of people gathered, no one dared to step forward and become the first to try.
Although what Qin Ze had said was indeed quite straightforward, everyone here understood that the test to become Grandmaster Xiao’s disciple would by no means be simple. Everyone now wanted someone else to go up first so they could observe. Who here wanted to become someone else’s stepping stone?
The Medicine King’s Valley disciples weren’t anxious, each of them just stood idly on the platform quietly waiting.
After a long period of time, someone finally gathered their courage and asked, “May I ask, what kind of pill is this?”
One of the Medicine King’s Valley disciples immediately sneered, “A poison pill!”
The crowd immediately went into an uproar.
Although they all expected Grandmaster Xiao’s test would not be easy to pass, this test was simply too different from the crowd’s expectations, wanting each of them to come up and willingly swallow a poison pill, how could this be considered a test? Everyone only had one life, and if they were to fail this test, this would be their burial place. How could such a thing be worth their while?
However, Qin Ze lightly said, “Although it is a poison pill, swallowing it is not fatal! But if your aptitude is not high enough to resolve its effects, you’ll be sick for three to five months at least.
Hearing that this pill was not fatal, many people’s nerves suddenly calmed. In the end, Grandmaster Xiao was still a renowned master; naturally he wouldn’t maliciously target their lives.
In front of this big pot of poison pills, the only ones who were likely to quit were those who had casually come here to fish in troubled waters.
But of those gathered, which one was not completely confidant in his or her own abilities? After a short while, someone finally jumped up onto the high platform and shouted, “I’ll go first!”
With someone taking the lead, a lot of people were suddenly also willing to come up and try.
*Shua Shua Shua* Shortly after, more than a dozen people had come forward.
“Go ahead!” The Medicine King’s Valley disciples nodded.
Each of the dozen or so people who had come up walked over the pot, took out a pill, and placed it into their mouth.
“Please refine it completely!”
These dozen or so people who had swallowed the poison pill quickly sat cross-legged and began circulating their various Secret Arts.
Meanwhile, the hundreds of people in the audience stared towards them and carefully observed. Each of them hoped to gain even the slightest of insights that may help them pass this test.