ISSTH – Book 3 – Chapter 235

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Chapter 235: Apprentice’s Fee 1

After the violet-robed man emerged from the portal, the eyes of the onlookers fell upon the person behind him, a hunchbacked Cultivator. His expressionless face was filled with scars that seemed to be self-inflicted.

An indescribable sense of power emanated from him, which seemed to bolster the powerful pressure which maintained silence within the auction stadium.

“Patriarch Hunchback!”

“So it’s Patriarch Hunchback! They say his Cultivation base is at the mid Nascent Soul stage. Three hundred years ago, he gave up everything to become the Alchemy Protector of Violet Furnace Lord An….”

“For Patriarch Hunchback to appear means… the man in the violet robe really must be one of the eight Violet Furnace Lords of the Violet Fate Sect, An Zaihai!” 2

The eyes of the hundred thousand Cultivators immediately shone with respect. The rank of Violet Furnace Lord was virtually the pinnacle of the Dao of alchemy. Other than Grandmaster, there was no higher position.

An Zaihai’s expression was calm. He nodded to the ten Furnace Lords, then lifted his right hand into the air and made a grasping motion. The Bedevilment Pill flew over and settled onto his palm. He didn’t sniff the pill, but rather let it rest in his palm as he closed his eyes.

Time slowly passed. The surrounding Cultivators watched with rapt attention. Meng Hao maintained his silence, watching thoughtfully as Violet Furnace Lord An Zaihai used his skill in the Dao of alchemy to gain enlightenment regarding Meng Hao’s pill.

After enough time passed for an incense stick to burn, Violet Furnace Lord An Zaihai slowly opened his eyes. His face looked moved, and as he stared at the pill in his hand, a strange light filled his eyes.

“What is the name of this pill?” he asked slowly, his voice somewhat husky.

An excited expression filled the face of the auctioneer. He clasped hands and bowed to An Zaihai, then said, “According to the records, the name of this pill is Bedevilment.”

An Zaihai looked at the pill for a long moment, then sighed and said, “What an amazing pill. Bedevilment. Melt the soul and transform it into evil. Rely only on the self to rise to the skies. It is not a burning of the soul, it supersedes that!” This was his attempt to state the essence of the pill. He couldn’t possibly deduce the formula of the pill in such a short time.

Others might not understand his words, but as soon as Meng Hao heard them, his pupils constricted.

“No wonder he’s a Violet Furnace Lord. In one glance, he was able to determine the true essence of the pill.” Meng Hao was lost in thought for a moment. In the future, he would need to add some confusing elements into his medicinal pills, so that they wouldn’t be so easy to analyze. Despite the man being a Violet Furnace Lord, the whole situation made Meng Hao feel a bit uneasy.

“This is not a one hundred percent pill,” said An Zaihai. “Its medicinal strength is actually ninety-five percent. However, even more deserving of praise is the fact that this pill was concocted amidst alchemic enlightenment. There is no formula for it.” The instant the hundred thousand Cultivators heard his words, they began to pant, and their minds reeled, especially because of the words alchemic enlightenment.

“Alchemic enlightenment…”

“This pill was created because of alchemic enlightenment. There’s no formula for it!”

“A pill created during alchemic enlightenment is one of a kind. You’ll never find another pill like it! That means… its value is at least double!” The hundred thousand Cultivators continued to discuss the matter, their burning eyes fixated on the Bedevilment Pill. They seemed to be going mad once again.

An Zaihai looked at the Bedevilment Pill for another long moment, then lowered his hand, allowing the pill to float in the air. Then he stepped back a few paces and closed his eyes.

It seemed he had only appeared to verify whether the Bedevilment Pill had been created during alchemic enlightenment.

“20,000,000 Spirit Stones! The Li Clan must have this pill!”

“20,500,000 Spirit Stones! A consummate pill like this, created in alchemic enlightenment, is unique under the heavens.“

The entire place boiled with excitement as more bids were called out. Meng Hao was breathing heavily, and his eyes were shining. Hearing all the bids filled his heart with excitement. However, a bit of hesitation suddenly appeared. After hearing the explanation from the Violet Furnace Lord, he now knew that the strange state he had been in when concocting the pill that day was known as alchemic enlightenment. However, what he didn’t understand was that the Violet Furnace Lord had described the pill as one of a kind, which seemed incongruous with what had actually happened.

“Maybe there are some variations that I don’t quite understand….” thought Meng Hao, suppressing his confusion and instead listening to the excitement with which the bids for the pill increased. Before, he had understood that it wasn’t difficult for alchemists to make profit from pill concocting, but he had never imagined the Bedevilment Pill would sell for such an incredible price.

He suddenly realized that his choice to join the Violet Fate Sect had definitely been a wise one.

Soon, the price for the Bedevilment pill reached 40,000,000 Spirit Stones. Such a price could bankrupt most Sects. Other than the four great Sects and three great Clans, no one else was even qualified to compete for it now.

“43,000,000 Spirit Stones!!” cried Fatty, leaped up onto the table.

“48,000,000!” yelled someone from the Black Sieve Sect.

“60,000,000!” raved Fatty. “Screw your granny! Do you dare to try to snatch my belongings!?”

The price had reached an unimaginable height. To most of the onlookers, this might be a rare, consummate pill, but it wasn’t worth that much, even with the added factor of Alchemic Enlightenment. After all, the pill had incredible medicinal strength, but it wasn’t clear what the results would be if it were consumed by the Core Formation stage. Considering it was apparently designed for the Foundation Establishment stage, a price of 60,000,000 Spirit Stones for such a pill was already relatively high.

The value of being able to research the Bedevilment Pill was already hard to determine. However, if after complete research it was found that the pill was effective for the Core Formation stage, then the value would be nearly limitless.

It must be stated that for an alchemist of the Southern Domain to reach the Grandmaster level, he must concoct, not just one ninety percent consummate pill, but one for each of the five stages of Qi Condensation, Foundation Establishment, Core Formation, Nascent Soul, and Spirit Severing. After concocting all of those ninety percent consummate pills, one could truly be considered a Grandmaster of the Dao of alchemy.

In any case, the research value of the Bedevilment Pill was truly hard to imagine. It was incredibly exciting because it was not only a consummate pill, but a supposedly unique pill concocted amidst alchemic enlightenment.

Meng Hao continued to grow more excited. He wanted the price to increase even more. In fact, were it not for his low Cultivation base, despite deep anxiety, he would pull out the second Bedevilment Pill and auction off that one too.

Although, now he was wondering how he would be able to retrieve his profits after the pill was sold. That was a bit of a problem.

It was at this moment that An Zaihai’s eyes suddenly opened.


Hearing this caused the surrounding Cultivators to stare, dumbfounded. Fatty and the others looked over at An Zaihai, and their faces slowly filled with anger.

Everyone knew of the unwritten rule of the Violet Fate Sect Pill Auction, that Violet Fate Sect Cultivators do not participate. Earlier, during the auction for the Foundation Establishment Day, the East Pill Division had let it be sold for research without batting an eye.

But this was a consummate pill…. Violet Furnace Lord An Zaihai was participating, creating a situation in which seller was competing along with buyer. Who could truly compete?

How could the bidding continue…?

“110,000,000!” yelled Fatty, his eyes red. He didn’t care about Spirit Stones, but about face. It didn’t matter if he was up against a Violet Furnace Lord. After his previous high bid, he had been trampled upon, which made him extremely unhappy. This wasn’t an actual fight or a battle. As far as Fatty was concerned, crushing Spirit Stones was nothing, and he surely had more.

“200,000,000,” said An Zaihai calmly. All of the one hundred thousand Cultivators gasped. Such a price was inconceivable. Even ten consummate pills, all concocted in alchemic enlightenment, would not be worth such an incredible price.

200,000,000 Spirit Stones could fund a great Sect for ten years.

“200…” Fatty’s anger raged to the heavens. He was just about to increase the bid, when An Zaihai’s cool voice rang out.

“I’m not purchasing this pill for myself. I’m purchasing it at the behest of Grandmaster Pill Demon, as his agent.”

These words caused silence to fill the air. Everyone looked on thoughtfully. Now, they understood. No matter what anyone said, the Violet Fate Sect wouldn’t allow such a pill to be sold. Even if the tradition of the Pill Auction was broken, their mind had been made up. This Pill would not leave the Violet Fate Sect.

Giving no regard to this, Fatty still seemed willing to increase the price. “200…” Suddenly, one of the disciples from his Sect grabbed him and whispered something into his ear. Face filled with an irritated look, Fatty gave an unwilling harrumph, but didn’t say anything more.

No one else said anything either. An Zaihai made a clutching motion with his right hand, and the Bedevilment Pill flew into his hand. Without another word, he turned, followed by the hunchbacked old man, and then disappeared into the glowing portal.

Meng Hao watched with wide eyes as all of this happened. Suddenly, he was feeling a bit nervous.

He hesitated for a moment. “Grandmaster Pill Demon bought it. Considering how prestigious he is, he wouldn’t… he wouldn’t hold back the money, would he…?” Thinking about Grandmaster Pill Demon’s position, he felt a bit more secure.

After An Zaihai left, there was no way to continue with the auction. Meng Hao grabbed Bai Yunlai, who looked somewhat absent-minded, and left.

After returning to the Sect, Meng Hao spent quite a bit of time repeatedly giving various instructions to Bai Yunlai. The entire time, Bai Yunlai looked at him with a strange look. The look of respect in his eyes far exceeded that from before.

Watching Bai Yunlai leave, seemingly in a trance, Meng Hao couldn’t help but laugh bitterly. After thinking about it, he decided that even if someone found out he had concocted the pill, it wouldn’t matter too much. Deciding not to worry about it any more, he headed back into his Immortal’s Cave.
“200,000,000 Spirit Stones! Even if I only get eighty percent, that’s still 160,000,000!” He sat down, thinking about the Spirit Stones, his eyes shining.

Deep in the East Pill Division of the Violet Fate Sect, at the main peak of the mountain range, An Zaihai stood respectfully next to an old man. The old man was, of course, none other than Pill Demon. In his hand was a black pill which was… the Bedevilment Pill.

Pill Demon examined the pill for nearly two hours. Slowly, a smile began to appear on his face. The smile was filled with both kindness and admiration.

An Zaihai looked at Pill Demon, his eyes filled with respect. In his entire life, he had never admired anyone more than Grandmaster Pill Demon. He was a Violet Furnace Lord, but it was actually because of that that he understood the vast gap between himself and his master. This caused his respect to grow even deeper.

Every time he stood in front of Grandmaster Pill Demon, he felt as if he were a tiny fish in the vast sea of the Dao of alchemy.

“Master,” said An Zaihai, “I’ve already looked into who concocted this pill. There are a few problems with his background. He’s….”

“Don’t say it,” the old man said coolly. “I forbid it. There’s no need.” He put the pill away with the wave of a hand.

An Zaihai stared in shock for a moment, then respectfully said, “Yes.”

“Don’t bother him either. Allow this little Grandmaster Pill Cauldron to maintain his mysterious anonymity in the Sect.” Pill Demon smiled, a smile filled with happiness and an indescribable contentment. Even as his voice continued to echo out, he disappeared into the distance. The entire time, he didn’t mention the Spirit Stones.

“Master, what about the Spirit Stones….” said An Zaihai hesitantly.

Pill Demon’s voice could be heard from off in the distance. “What Spirit Stones? Those are his apprentice’s fees!”

An Zaihai watched his master disappear into the distance, and then laughed. As he turned, a name floated in his mind.

“Fang Mu….”

Time passed. Soon half a month had gone by. It was on this particular day that, with great anticipation, Meng Hao asked Bai Yunlai to go check to see if the Spirit Stones could be collected. Bai Yunlai returned in the evening, his face long. His explanation was like a bolt from the blue.

With great care, he said, “I used a variety of methods to ask around, but the answer was always the same…. Aiiii, after the pill was sold, no Spirit Stones were deposited into the account…. I’m not really sure what exactly is going on, but how could we expect the auction house to dare to go and demand Spirit Stones from Grandmaster Pill Demon…?”

Meng Hao gaped in astonishment. He felt as if he had just been struck in the head with five lightning bolts. His eyes went wide with fury.

“My Spirit Stones! My 200,000,000 Spirit Stones! Pill Demon, you bought my pill. Give me my Spirit Stones!” Meng Hao gnashed his teeth. However, there was nothing he could do except sit there feeling at a loss.


This chapter was sponsored by Anon from SG, Jaziel Ramirez, DS

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  1. A more complete translation of “apprentice’s fee” would be “fee for formally becoming the apprentice of a master”
  2. An Zaihai’s name in Chinese is 安在海 ān zài hǎi – An is a surname which also means “safe” or “quiet.” Zai means “at” or “in.” Hai means “ocean” or “sea”


138 thoughts on “ISSTH – Book 3 – Chapter 235” - NO SPOILERS and NO CURSING

  1. Thanks for this super epic chapter ,translation and donation!!!

    Now i already guessed outcome and i was almost sure it would be like this since it is kind of a hobby of Er Gen. But i also had a thought about this whole thing (identity of Fang Mu) since the examination for Master Alchemist . When Grandmaster Pill Demon was watching Fang Mu , he told Chu Yuyuan that the solution to her solving the 3 things ( forgot how to type it) was Fang Mu , i think here he meant to just say “Look the uneasiness of all your problem is right there”. And not what most of us thought that Meng Hao got some kind of way to actually solve the 3 things (yet) .

    So how about my thought? anyone else had the same idea? Does it have any flaw in it?
    Would love some reply , since i have been practically reading all the comments here ( find it very interesting , fun and also so i can speed up some time for the next chapter xD)

    Then again thanks for the epic chapter , translation and donation . I really appreciate this.

    1. Well from the conversation back then, I think Pill Demon told her she should learn from what Fang Mu was doing in the exam (not from Fang Mu himself), namely to have unswerving determination and focus. So yea, she probably just couldn’t focus enough to create the Three Mortalities Pill since she’s always agitated to leave the Sect and find Meng Hao.

      And whether Pill Demon knows Fang Mu = Meng Hao. I’m not sure if the story so far gives any hints to it.

    2. i dont know if this is the case but it would be damn cool if it was 😀 …and as you said considering Er gen has done till now it wouldn’t be surprising if it was.

    1. Well he will pay… To work under him, the value of that has no limit in that world.

      Its basicly like if a king or somthing where to buy your house, then he pays you by letting you stay in a castle of his, with good food, servents and so on. Say the house was worth a million or 2, I just looked up the rent of a castle… a small one I would expect… 5.2 million. Thats ignoring the servents and all that.

      I am simply saying, he is super lucky. He simply do not know what he will gain yet.

    1. Hes only been a apprentice for 3 years, yet fees are at 200,000,000. They better atleast paided off the damages he done with the furnace pots he exploded.

        1. Yea that seems clear. And Its a lagre sum, however he is the absolut top of the world. Imagen how much a day with the Pill Demon would have sold for? Yea, probably way more then the 200 000 000.

    1. But he is not…. Meng gets a ton of value. Think, if the pill would have been sold for even 100.000.000 without the Pill Demon. Simply based on there being small clues that could be gained by looking at Mengs pill. Think how much even a day with the Pill Demon would sell for.

  2. ╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻ FLIP THIS TABLE.
    ┻━┻ ︵ ヽ(°□°ヽ) FLIP THAT TABLE.
    ┻━┻ ︵ \( °□° )/ ︵ ┻━┻ FLIP ALL THE TABLES
    ಠ_ಠ Put.
    ಠ__ಠ The tables.
    ಠ___ಠ Back.
    ┳━┳ ┳━┳\( °-° )/┳━┳ ┳━┳

      1. After enough time passed for an incense stick to burn and take about a space of ten breaths while choughing up 1 million litres of blood, finally MC died…

  3. Now I think about it, it is because Meng Hao choose to play as anonymous that Pill Demon King decided to play on that. Without knowing who created the pill, anyone could assume as the so-called “Pill Cauldron”, thus even now as “Pill Cauldron” became famous, it is not “Fang Mu” (Meng Hao) that become the talk of the town. Therefore, Pill Demon King can also say he can’t pay to anonymous without direct confirmation. So, I felt the Pill Demon King is more to playfulness than deceit. Beside, if the auctioneers knew it is “Fang Mu” that created that pill in the first place, they would conduct strict test before submitting it.

    1. I think that most people will know that Pill Demon can just find out who this pill is made from , it is just that he is The Pill Demon , which is why no one will question what he do.

  4. I’m really confused about the apprentice’s fee.

    This sentence is really confusing — “What Spirit Stones? Those are his apprentice’s fees!”

    Fang Mu’s apprentice is Bai Yunlai. Is the pill demon going to given it to Bai Yunlai as Fang Mu anonymously auctioned the pill?

    Given that the aforementioned scenario is unlikely, maybe the author meant these instead:

    1. A fee for apprenticing under Pill Demon as he is going to make him a disciple.
    2. A fee for joining the violet fate sect.

      1. Sorry. What I’m translating as “apprentice’s fees” in Chinese literally means “fee for formally becoming the apprentice of a master”

  5. I really hope that Meng Hao doesn’t let this go because it would annoy me to no end. Right now I really hope he goes to Pill demon and just flatly tells him to give him his money and f*** off. But wow this is how the violet fate disciples must have felt when Meng Hao gave them the spear.

    1. Well if it just ends up like that then i just feel a tiny little bad for our MC BUT if the apprentice’s fee is meant by Pill Demon’s personal apprentice’s fee then i am pretty much satisfied.

  6. I wonder, if those were his apprentice fees and then some, then is Meng still an apprentice?
    Technically now he can leave, no strings attached, ignoring that fact he needs the cure for his poison.

  7. Thank you!!

    Hahahah Reliance tried to pull off some similar shit and we all know how that went on, seems like Pill Demon will get screwd soon if it goes this way!

  8. Thanks for the chapter Deathblade, Madam Deathblade, John Rogers, Lingson, MeeBoo, Yascob, Anon from SG, Jaziel Ramirez, DS, and Er Gen! Dear WuxiaWorld, many thanks to the Author, Translator(s), (Editors), (Donors) for the awesome chapter! With lots of love, Jack ❤
    Many thanks to peacefuloutrage senpai for the comment.

  9. Did he just steal from meng hao? doesn’t he know the consequences of stealing from meng hao? well, guess the pill demon is about to experience what happens when you steal from meng hao, he steals back everything from you.

  10. Sigh. Just when I thought the author had finally made a sect where members had genuine human decency. But no, Pill Demon is apparently just as big of a scum thief as Patriarch Reliance. MC just got utterly robbed.

    1. Well, I get where you’re coming from, but you can’t compare the two. Reliance would rob you blind and not give a shit about you, he’d take everything and leave nothing behind. In this case, pill demon took the pill as an “apprentice fee”, he will take meng hao in as a personal disciple and groom him. I believe that is worth far more than the spirit stones. It’s also clear that he never intended to buy it anyway, the extreme increases in bids was just made because they weren’t going to pay with money, but rather tuition. It’s not really like he took money or something, he took a pill meng hao created. Sure, it could’ve sold to others for around 60 million, but that’s it. He probably wouldn’t be able to easily rise in ranks or get tuition from pill demon himself.

    2. … I…. Maby I am just dumb. I do not see how people can think he got robbed. It seems so clear he got WAY more then 200.000.000. The value he gained probably was more like

  11. “This is not a one hundred percent pill,” said An Zaihai. “Its medicinal strength is actually ninety-five percent. However, even more deserving of praise is the fact that this pill was concocted amidst alchemic enlightenment. There is no formula for it.” The instant the hundred thousand Cultivators heard his words, they began to pant, and their minds reeled, especially because of the words alchemic enlightenment.

    So… That means that the other pill he’s got in his bag that is superior is actually a 100% pill, right? that there was a pill tribulation should signify that the “perfect” happened(100%), which the heavens doesn’t allow.

    “So it’s Patriarch Hunchback! They say his Cultivation base is at the mid Nascent Soul stage. Three hundred years ago, he gave up everything to become the Alchemy Protector of Violet Furnace Lord An….”

    This author seems to love naming people with nicknames… Hunchback, reliance, revelation, pill demon, perhaps eccentric song too?… haha. Wouldn’t he take offense if you called him hunchback? It’s not really a compliment.

  12. I am supriced so many feel he was cheated. Clearly Pill Demon is going to let him train under himself. If a single pill can be sold for over 100.000.000. Then think how much even a day with the Pill Demon would cost? A single day where he would teach somone stuff would probably ad at least 1 or 2 more 0’s. Basicly the value is not possible to realy messure in money or spiritstones.

  13. Well, so he will be become Pill Demon’s apprentice? So Pill Demon already knows he is Meng Hao and doesn’t cares just like when told Chu Uuyan to learn from him..
    Btw I almost dye laughing when thinking if Pill Demon will have a fate similar to Patriarch Reliance hahahha

  14. look look, soon meng hao will become apprentice of pill demon, look at that pill dmon so “shameless” what apprentice fee, shit, i think finally meng hao become rich but it not like that….shiiit meng hao why people near you and help you all shameless like you!!!!

  15. Yo if I was him and just came to realization that I was out 200M, I would probably… No definitely go cry in a corner and lose my shit for about a month maybe two.

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