After a stick of incense worth of time, Yang Kai, who had been quietly circulating his True Qi, began moving some of the black gas and forcing it out of his forehead.
To those observing, there was now a sliver of black gas on Yang Kai’s brow.
Qin Ze was shocked.
This was clearly the sign that the final step of the test had arrived. Of the hundreds of Alchemists who had participated before now, only Wang Qi Ren and Dong Qing Yan had managed to reach this point; the former falling short, the latter finally succeeding.
How did this mere bodyguard do it?
Only a true Alchemy genius should be able to do this!
Qin Ze suddenly became nervous as he carefully watched Yang Kai with his heart stuck in his throat. Uncle Xiao had personally told him that for this time’s test, as long as he could find even a single suitable successor, he would be completely satisfied.
Now that Dong Qing Yan had already passed, if a second person were to also succeed… wouldn’t his old Uncle cry out in joy? If Hidden Cloud Peak were to obtain more than one successor, it was not hard to imagine it flourishing in the future.
Just as Qin Ze felt like his heart might burst from the tension, the wisp of black gas between Yang Kai’s eyebrows vanished. Qin Ze immediately held his breath as he intensely focused his attention.
Successor of failure would be decided in the next moment!
As he anxiously waited for a long time, Yang Kai showed no reaction. Then suddenly Qin Ze’s eyes went round as he shockingly saw a puff of black smoke re-emerge from Yang Kai’s brow.
[What’s going on!?]
Qin Ze was completely confused. The reaction of this boy in front of him was nothing like Wang Qi Ren’s vomiting of black blood, nor was it like Dong Qing Yan successful exhalation of black smoke. [How is it that the wisp of black gas moved back and forth from his brow? This is very different from what Uncle Xiao said the situation should be.]
As he mulled over this puzzle in his heart, the black gas once again disappeared.
However, before his nerves could settle, it once again emerged.
Qin Ze’s heart twisted every time the black gas appeared and disappeared. This kind of situation was simply akin to torture, especially since this result was still waffling back and forth between success and failure, toying with the emotions of everyone who was watching.
After this cycle continued back and forth a dozen times, the young boy in front of him suddenly opened his mouth and spat out a turbid cloud of black gas.
As soon as he spat out this black gas, the youth’s whole body seemed like it had lost its strength, his head hanging down with a disappointed look on his face.
[The hell! You finally decided to spit it out.] Qin Ze fiercely cursed in his heart, thinking that if he had to endure this much longer his heart might not be able to bear the stress.
But… how could such a thing happen?
Qin Ze frowned, was it that this youth’s aptitude could only barely meet the standard Uncle Xiao had set, causing him to linger between success and failure? [That must be it…]
“Senior Brother Qin…” Dong Qing Yan looked hesitantly towards Qin Ze, “How did he do?”
Shaken out of his stupor by this voice, Qin Ze laughed, “En, he did alright. Although his aptitude is not nearly as high as Junior Sister’s, this can still barely be considered a pass.”
[He also passed?]
These words suddenly made the crowd below feel dizzy.
Before now, so many people had gone up on the platform, but not a single one had been successful. Even Wang Qi Ren had failed and wound up vomiting a mouthful of black blood, but now a Common Grade Mid-Rank Alchemist passed. Although this rank of Alchemist was quite low, in the end she was still the Dong Family’s Young Lady. The Dong Family was by no means a small force, so them being able to cultivate such a talent was acceptable to most.
But her guardian passing as well?
This guy was just the Dong Family Young Lady’s attendant; such a person had also managed to succeed?
“Senior Qin, that little brat must have cheated somehow.” Some people began to clamour.
“That’s right Senior Qin, this bastard has never even performed Alchemy before. A completely unranked Alchemist, how could he have passed Grandmaster Xiao’s test?
“He must have used some underhanded means to do this, I am not satisfied!”
Qin Ze’s smiling face immediately cramped up as a dangerous light flashed across his eyes, so glaring towards the crowd gathered below he coldly snorted, “This is my Uncle Xiao’s personally refined poison pill! No one- I repeat- no one can avoid its effects. Even if it was an Immortal Ascension Boundary Master who had taken this pill. Without an appropriate aptitude for Alchemy, he would still be unable to bear it. If you are not satisfied, you can try it yourself, but those who dare question the results are slandering my Medicine King’s Valley and slandering my Uncle Xiao!”
As these words echoed throughout the plaza, the crowd fell silent.
“Fuck, a no-name servant who can’t even perform Alchemy managed to pass. I don’t believe it!” One of the Alchemists in the crowd gnashed his teeth and jumped up onto the platform.
Many others soon followed behind him.
A moment later, a large group of people were poisoned…
The giant medicine pot contained at least five or six hundred poison pills, but by noon all of them had been taken. However, in the end, only Dong Qing Yan and Yang Kai managed to pass the test.
There were many people who obtained the same result as Wang Qi Ren, managing to arrive at the final step but ultimately falling short. Each of them helplessly let out a sigh of regret.
It was clear to everyone now that Grandmaster Xiao had issued such a difficult test this time not to recruit disciples but to find a suitable successor.
At the end of the test, Qin Ze came over with a smile on his face, “Junior Brother, Junior Sister, would you like to go to Hidden Cloud Peak now? If Uncle Xiao were to learn that two people managed to pass his test, he will certainly be very pleased.”
Yang Kai remained silent and indifferent. His face was completely unchanged. His identity right now was that of a simple escort, so naturally he had no right to decide such matters.
Dong Qing Yan, on the other hand, smiled and said, “I’d like to first go talk with my brother.”
“Good, I’ll come with you. After you say your goodbyes, then we will proceed to Hidden Cloud Peak!”
Clearly he could not wait to bring them into Medicine King’s Valley.
On the third floor of the Dong Family Medicine Store, Dong Qing Han’s pudgy face was plastered with an awkward smile. News of Dong Qing Yan having passed Grandmaster Xiao’s disciple recruitment test had long since reached his ear.
Although he knew that his sister had been obsessed with Alchemy since she was a child, he had never dreamed she would be able to accomplish such a feat.
Worshipping Xiao Fu Sheng as her master! This was a wondrous opportunity that no one would refuse. But in the end, she was still just a little girl, and from the moment she was born she had grown up spoiled. Now, suddenly changing to a strange new environment, as her brother, he was worried about if she would be able to handle it or not.
However, the ship had sailed, so unless the Dong Family was willing to completely offend and break off all ties with Medicine King’s Valley, they would never even dream of trying to snatch Dong Qing Yan back from them.
The Dong Family severing relations with Medicine King’s Valley was clearly impossible.
As he smiled wryly again and again, the Wind and Cloud Dual Guard’s suddenly whispered, “Along with the Young Lady and Young Master Yang, another man is accompanying them, and he should be a steward of Medicine King’s Valley.”
Dong Qing Han was startled by this news and quickly got up, “Come with me!”
But before he could reach the door, the sound of footsteps on the stairs reached his ear.
Upon opening the door, he saw Dong Qing Yan break into a dash, nearly jumping up the stairs towards him.
“Big Brother, Big Brother, I did it!” Dong Qing Yan simply couldn’t wait to tell Dong Qing Han this good news.
Dong Qing Han however stretched out his hand and knocked on her head, swiftly reprimanding her, “What “I did it”! Something this important, yet you didn’t even discuss it with me in advance!”
Dong Qing Yan clutched her little head, but kept smiling, apparently not fazed in the slightest by this scolding.
Just as Dong Qing Han was about to continue, Qin Ze who had been following behind lightly coughed.
Hearing this, Dong Qing Han turned around and hurriedly cupped his fists, “This Junior greets Senior Qin!”
“En.” Qin Ze faintly nod before frowning slightly, “Young Master Dong, since your younger sister has passed this test, she is now a disciple of my Medicine King’s Valley, my Uncle Xiao’s Apprentice, and this Qin’s Junior Sister, although she is still a member of your Dong Family, you are no longer allowed to arbitrarily hit her!”
Dong Qing Han was stunned.
Qin Ze reluctantly continued to explain his reprimand, “Alchemy is a distinguished profession, and different from you fist throwing sword wielding bunch, their minds are important, do you understand? How would you compensate this world if you damaged her brain by striking her? Junior Sister Yan is an Alchemy genius, if her aptitude was in any way affected, do you think you could bear responsibility for such a loss? Could you bear my Uncle Xiao’s anger? Could your Dong Family bear my Medicine King’s Valley’s wrath?”
After being verbally beaten over the head like this, the once proud Young Master Dong could only lower his head like a whipped dog and desperately hold his tongue.
Qin Ze snorted and continued, “You just called me Senior, and Yan’er is now this Qin’s Junior Sister, so she is now also of higher seniority than you. How can you raise your hand against your senior… do you not even understand something so simple? Hm?”
This time, Dong Qing Han was completely dumbfounded, desperate to cry but unable to shed any tears.
[I was simply paying you the appropriate respect yet you didn’t even acknowledge me with a single word. I know you Medicine King’s Valley people are all important enough to justify your arrogance but… she is still my little sister! How can I not even be allowed to teach her a lesson? Not to mention that ridiculous justification you spouted.]
[On top of that, she had not officially worshipped into Medicine King’s Valley, if you really want to use your Medicine King’s Valley’s authority to justify your words, I’m afraid you’ll be in for some trouble!]
But although Dong Qing Han was extremely depressed over this, in his heart he was still quite happy with someone as prestigious as Qin Ze shielding his sister like so. Once she officially entered Medicine King’s Valley, she should not need to endure such bitterness.
“This Junior knows his wrong!” Dong Qing Han obediently admitted.
Qin Ze faintly nodded, “Good, I see Young Master Dong is not brainless; being able to admit one’s wrongs is a good thing.”
Hearing these words, Dong Qing Han’s fat face managed to squeeze out a stiff awkward smile. His expression was more ugly than if he had simply broken down and cried.
Ignoring him, Qin Ze turned and looked at Dong Qing Yan, “Junior Sister, please finish up your discussions with Young Master Dong as soon as possible, I’ll wait for you downstairs.”
Finished speaking, he went straight downstairs.
The only reason he had taken this little trip was to accompany Dong Qing Yan.
Once Qin Ze left, Dong Qing Han ground his teeth and glared at his little sister, “Well aren’t you a big deal, should I be calling you Senior Dong now!?”
“Hee hee…” Dong Qing Yan smiled sheepishly walked up, shook her brother’s arm, and softly asked, “About Daddy’s side…”
Dong Qing Han could only helplessly shake his head, “I’ll tell him, I don’t believe he will try to stop you.”
“En en, Daddy will definitely be proud of me.” Dong Qing Yan quickly nodded, suddenly putting down the boulder from her heart.
Turning to look at Yang Kai, Dong Qing Han whispered, “Once you’ve entered Medicine King’s Valley be extremely careful, and whatever happens, don’t even think of getting Yan’er involved!”
Of course he was referring to the matter of the Pill Saint’s Peak.
“I have a sense of proportion.” Yang Kai solemnly said.
Half an hour later, Yang Kai and Dong Qing Yan came downstairs.
Down below, Qin Ze and the three Medicine King’s Valley disciples had grown increasingly impatient, so once they saw them it was like someone had lit a fire under their asses.
Amongst Medicine King’s Valley’s Twelve Peaks, Hidden Cloud Peak was situated very close to the centre, only separated from the Pill Saint’s Peak by two small hills.
As one approached it and looked up, a rugged mountain path surrounded by lush green forests that led to the top of the peak was vaguely visible. The entire scene was extremely beautiful.
At the foot of the mountain, there was a stone upon which the three characters “Hidden Cloud Peak” were inscribed, giving off a vigorous and powerful air.
At the lower right corner of this monument, there was also an additional line of blood red characters.
When Yang Kai saw this small line of words, he couldn’t help but be slightly taken aback, “Trespassers will die!”