Yang Kai scratched his head awkwardly. He had thought he had obtained a considerable amount of wealth when he received 150 Crystal Stones, but now it seemed that this amount was still not much.
“Don’t look at me, I don’t have any Crystal Stones,” Shui Ling also said helplessly, she had lived in the Central Capital for more than two years and had long ago exhausted the Crystal Stones she had on her.
Yun Xuan heard their conversation and after hesitating for a moment, clenched her teeth and said, “I have a piece of Sky Cicada Jade here.”
Yang Kai stared at her blankly.
“I don’t have much use for it anyway, so I’ll give it to you,” Saying so, Yun Xuan reached out and took a piece of jade from the Universe Bag on her waist.
Yang Kai’s brow tightened as he accepted the piece of jade, “Then I’ll consider this a loan from you.”
“No need,” Yun Xuan smiled lightly.
Grandmaster Ma wasn’t sure who Yang Kai was or what his relationship with Yun Xuan was, but seeing her act so warmly towards him, even trying to gift him a valuable material like Sky Cicada Jade, he couldn’t help wondering.
Just what value did this boy from some remote land have that was worth investing in? Grandmaster Ma pondered to himself.
When Sky Cicada Jade and Ice Flame Star Sand were handed over to Grandmaster Ma, he reigned in his wandering thoughts and coughed lightly, “You are not a disciple of my Bold Independent Union, so in truth, the cost of repairing this artifact should be 20% higher…”
As he said so, he glanced over at Yun Xuan and smiled slightly, “But out of consideration for Yun girl’s face, this old master will only charge you 100 pieces of Crystal Stone. You at least have that much, right?”
Thinking that this country boy would be dirt poor, Grandmaster Ma didn’t dare ask for too much, lest he embarrass Yun Xuan.
Thankfully, Yang Kai nodded and freely took out a hundred pieces of Crystal Stone and handed them over.
Grandmaster Ma showed a satisfied expression and declared, “Good! Come back in ten days and I’ll give you your new artifact, I guarantee you won’t be disappointed!”
“Then we’ll take our leave first,” Yun Xuan nodded lightly before leading Yang Kai and Shui Ling out.
After leaving the Artifact Hall, Yang Kai asked, “How many Crystal Stones is that Sky Cicada Jade worth?”
However, Yun Xuan just laughed and said nothing while Shui Ling casually pointed up towards the sky.
(Silavin: Basically 10 thousand)
Yang Kai’s face immediately became awkward.
There was nothing on him of much value he could give Yun Xuan as compensation. He was not prepared to expose the Myriad Drug Liquid yet, and the Ice Flame Star Sand had all been given to Grandmaster Ma. He had originally planned on splitting the grains with Shui Ling but now even that wasn’t possible.
Fortunately, with Shui Ling being the Little Princess of Water Spirit Temple, she probably wouldn’t care about such minor gains and losses.
“I’ll definitely pay you back,” Yang Kai reiterated. He did not like owing people favours, especially unfamiliar people, not to mention Yun Xuan showing such a warm attitude towards him was because of Shui Ling’s status.
Yang Kai knew that with his current identity and strength, there was no reason Yun Xuan would gift him such a valuable material just to establish a connection.
“I told you there’s no need, you…” Yun Xuan pursed her lips and smiled before shaking her head, “Fine, fine, do as you like, let’s go back for now.”
“There’s still something I’d like to buy first.” Yang Kai said.
“Oh? What do you want to buy? Just tell me and I’ll lead you to an appropriate shop,” Yun Xuan stared at him with interest.
“Some spirit herbs.”
“What do you want to buy herbs for?” Yun Xuan asked, her beautiful eyes suddenly flashing a brilliant light, “Are you an Alchemist?”
Yang Kai shook his head, “I have some interest in Alchemy, so I thought I’d try my hand at it.”
“You do?” Shui Ling was also dumbfounded. The time she had spent with Yang Kai wasn’t short, but she had never once seen him show any interest in pill refining. She knew that Yang Kai had a very close relationship with his ‘Little Senior Sister’ Xia Ning Chang, and that the latter had astonishing talent in the Alchemic Dao, but she never thought Yang Kai would have an interest in Alchemy as well. Shui Ling couldn’t help feeling somewhat confused.
“I just want to try it casually,” Yang Kai replied.
In any case he currently was idle, Grandmaster Ma had said it would be ten days before he could retrieve his Bone Shield so Yang Kai was just looking for something to pass the time.
On top of that, he was sincere when he said he was interested in Alchemy, it was just that he had never had an opportunity to practice it.
Before reaching the Immortal Ascension Boundary, one should not practice Alchemy, that was the teaching of Medicine King’s Valley’s Hidden Cloud Peak’s Xiao Fu Sheng! Yang Kai has already broke through to the Immortal Ascension Boundary some time ago so he had obviously met this condition.
Yang Kai previously had never needed to worry about pills for his cultivation as Little Senior Sister had constantly provided them to him. But now, he was alone in the Tong Xuan Realm and had no idea where Treasurer Meng, Su Yan, or Xia Ning Chang was, so he had to make plans for his future.
Besides, having such a skill would be better than nothing.
“I don’t understand you,” Shui Ling shook her head.
“Then come with me, I’ll take you to a medicine herb shop. What kind do you want?”
“The lower the grade, the better!” Yang Kai replied.
Yun Xuan was stunned, “The lower the better? Have you never performed Alchemy before?”
Only some apprentices who had yet to enter the Alchemic Way would choose the lower grade of herbs to practice.
“He’s never even tried before!” Shui Ling smiled.
“Seems you really are just trying casually,” Yun Xuan smiled, showing no intention of trying to stop him, leading Yang Kai and Shui Ling to another part of the city.
The further they walked from downtown, the lower the grade of resources were being sold, even the realms of the surrounding cultivators was lower than before.
Yang Kai knew that this region of Bold Independent City’s was where the lowest level cultivators came to shop.
Not long after, the group of three came to a medicine shop that was filled with a variety of low-grade materials. There were many Alchemy and Artifact Refiner apprentices looking about for materials to practice with here.
Although the material grades were low, the prices were also cheap. However, because many novices would purchase large quantities of these practice materials, business was actually good.
Under the guidance of Yun Xuan, Yang Kai purchased a large number of low-grade herbs with his remaining 50 Crystal Stones and left with satisfied look on his face.
Back at Yun Xuan’s team’s house, Yang Kai entered his room, closed the door, set up a simple barrier, and began his journey into the Alchemic Way.
About the mysteries and theory of the Alchemic Way, Yang Kai already had a deep understanding.
Over the years he had constantly been studying the True Alchemic Way which gave him a very broad range of knowledge about Alchemy, even more so than Xia Ning Chang.
With regards to the construction of various Spirit Arrays, the selection of herbs, the mastery of fire, and the experiences of various Alchemy Grandmasters, no one could match him.
What Yang Kai lacked now was only practical experience.
Moreover, the attributes of his True Qi and Spiritual Energy were also quite suitable for Alchemy.
His extremely pure True Yang Yuan Qi was perfectly suited for smelting and refining herbs.
It could be said that when it came to performing Alchemy, Yang Kai’s basic attributes were superb. Although he wouldn’t be able to compare with Xia Ning Chang’s Sacred Spirit Medicine Body, his starting point was at least much better than other Alchemists.
Pouring out the pile of low-grade herbs he had purchased, Yang Kai next summoned the little Incense Burner from the Black Book space.
This Incense Burner was the treasure that had appeared when he had unlocked the third page of the Black Book, and after he began studying the True Alchemic Way, Yang Kai realized that it was not just a simple incense burner.
It was also a pill stove that could be used to perform Alchemy!
The Incense Burner and the True Alchemic Way were meant to complement each other, but without the accident that occurred in Medicine King’s Valley where the True Alchemic Way contained inside the Pill Saint’s portrait was forcibly transfer to his Soul, Yang Kai might have missed the opportunity to enter the Alchemic Way.
The original owner of the Black Book seemed to have no intention of letting his successor study Alchemic Way, or at least had not meant to give him the True Alchemic Way.
However, it seems the Heavens had other plans.
Placing the small Incense Burner in front of himself, Yang Kai began injecting his True Qi into it following a pre-set path.
Soon, luminescent lines began appearing on the Incense Burner’s surface and it expanded to the size of a small water basin.
Yang Kai took his hands back and nodded with satisfaction.
The size of a pill furnace, to a certain extent, was a visual representation of the skill of an Alchemist.
Generally, the larger the pill furnace they required, the worse the Alchemist’s skill was, because while performing Alchemy, an Alchemist would need to use their own True Qi to portray different Spirit Arrays inside the furnace and use these Spirit Arrays to enhance the refinement and purification of medicine herbs and fuse the resulting medicinal liquid into a solid pill.
If an Alchemist possessed enough skill, no matter how small the pill furnace they used was, they could accurately portray and utilize these Spirit Arrays.
The current water basin sized pill furnace was suitable for Yang Kai to practice with. With such a large pill furnace, the tolerance for inaccuracy in his portrayal of the various Spirit Arrays would be slightly higher while the additional True Qi he would need to consume in order to do so was not an issue.
Recalling the recipe for one of the simplest pills, Yang Kai found the corresponding herbs from his pile of ingredients and placed them by his side; turning to the furnace again, he formed a series of hand seals and then began pouring his True Qi into it.
Soon, a simple Spirit Array was formed inside the pill furnace.
Because he was practicing, Yang Kai chose a Spirit Array that would increase the chance of successfully refining a pill. This Spirit Array was amongst the most basic he knew and was not too difficult to compose.
With his current True Qi manipulation abilities, Yang Kai could relatively easily control the shape and stability of this Spirit Array.
Inspected the Spirit Array inside the pill furnace, Yang Kai was extremely satisfied.
Orderly placing the spirit herbs into the pill furnace, Yang Kai then began pouring his True Qi into it, using his True Yang Yuan Qi to refine these herbs and extract their medicinal essence.
While he completed this process, the myriad of valuable experiences of various Alchemy Grandmasters he had read in the True Alchemic Way appeared in Yang Kai’s mind, allowing him to compare them to his current process.
These Alchemy Grandmasters also were one ignorant of the Alchemic Way and its profound mysteries.
But through their own efforts, they step by step rose to the peak of world and gained the respect of their peers.
Yang Kai proceeded cautiously, because the amount of True Qi he injected into the furnace would have a direct impact on the refinement of the spirit herbs’ medicinal properties. If he poured in too much True Qi, he would burn the herbs but if he put in too little, he would fail to completely refine them and would be unable to form a pill.
Alchemy was a profession that required one to have strict control over their own True Qi.
As the spirit herbs were refined into medicinal essence under the influence of Yang Kai’s True Qi, they began merging together and undergoing miraculous changes.
However, just as Yang Kai was about to succeed in this refinement, a puff of black smoke suddenly appeared from the pill furnace and a burnt smell quickly filled the room.
Yang Kai immediately stopped injecting his True Qi and wrinkled his brow.
He knew that this time’s Alchemy was a complete failure. It seemed like he had injected too much of his True Qi into the furnace and had burnt down all the herbs inside.
Taking out the burst waste material from the pill furnace, Yang Kai didn’t rush to start again but instead sat there calmly began mentally reviewing everything about the process he had just experienced, trying to confirm what he did correctly and what he did wrong.