Panorama Pavilion’s auction finally came to a close, and Lu Yun had walked away with all three prizes. After today, his name would be known far and wide.
He’d succeeded in refining a Heaven Descent Pill, and a female arcane dao immortal had taken it! Qing Ruyan’s unborn child was destined to become a celestial emperor and was already promised to Lu Yun as a disciple!
There was no reason for the youth to refuse such a tempting offer. For the rest of the world, things had definitely taken a turn for the worse.
There’d been some uncertainty before on whether Dusk Province could truly grow into a new sacred land. If a new celestial emperor rose up there, that would no longer be the case. More importantly, no one knew how quickly Qing Ruyan’s child would attain origin dao realm. In the ancient times, the Heaven Descent Pill alone had been sufficient!
The nine existing celestial emperors were about to seclude themselves from the world in order to seek that legendary realm. The winds of change were blowing, portents of the momentous affairs that were yet to come, and the Heaven Descent Pill was another catalyst.
“Sir Lu, a moment of your time!” As the crowd began dispersing, an aged voice called out to Lu Yun. It was an old man with fiery hair, dressed in matching robes.
“This old man is Zhurong Cangshan of the Zhurong family.” He approached the youth with a smile.
“Zhurong Cangshan!” The introduction elicited a considerable reaction from the surrounding crowd. The Zhurong family!
Although it wasn’t a great faction in the world of immortals, it was definitely one of the oldest. ‘Zhurong’ was the official title of a god in the ancient divine court; specifically, it was the god of fire. The family that now claimed the surname was a bloodline descended from that god.
At the beginning of the new world order, the divines had enslaved countless people, but hadn’t dared levy the same treatment on the Zhurongs. Even now, its kinsmen had mastery over nearly every kind of fire. Their proficiency with fire rivaled the Vermilion Bird tribe! Naturally, the family had engendered many genius pill masters and treasure refiners as a result.
Zhurong Cangshan himself was a capable member of the latter group and was the author of multiple superior treasures. His status was reflected in the deep fear and respect that others showed toward him.
“Is there anything you need, Mister Zhurong?” Sobering up, Lu Yun made a courteous bow toward his elder.
In a roundabout way, he owed a considerable amount to the old man’s family. Huangqing had once studied under a dao immortal Zhurong master, eventually rising beyond her master’s expertise. As such, Lu Yun could be considered an indirect student of the family’s knowledge.
If he hadn’t met Huangqing when he had, he’d act on his desire to dig up the Zhurong’s ancestral graves instead….
Zhurong Cangshan blinked with momentary surprise. He hadn’t expected respect from a youth who’d shown incredible arrogance to Gu Zun only moments earlier. In terms of renown and position in the world, he was very much the other master’s counterpart: a well-respected expert in his field.
Below dao immortality, in fact, he was the best.
The young governor hectoring Gu Zun meant that he might’ve been willing to dish out the same treatment to the master refiner. Instead, he showed a civility that was the direct opposite. Zhurong Cangshan was secretly very pleased.
“Need is too strong a word,” he replied seriously. “What I have is a humble request. The Ten Orientations Stone is very important to me, I am willing to exchange it for three unowned dao-grade treasures.”
Dao-grade treasures were a completely different beast from supreme-ranked treasures. As a result of being refined by dao immortals, they were much more powerful than supreme-grade treasures. Unowned treasures were especially precious; fusion and refinement via one’s blood would easily convert them to treasures that could be inherited by an entire clan.
In most people’s eyes, three unowned dao treasures were far more precious than a single Ten Orientations Stone. However, Lu Yun shook his head slightly. “I’m afraid I must disappoint you, Master Zhurong. I came here today for the stone as well.”
“Are you also here on behalf of another?” Zhurong Cangshan asked, a little bemused.
“Not at all,” said Lu Yun. “This junior intends to refine a treasure in the near future, and the Ten Orientations Stone is its main material.”
“What?!” the crowd clamored once more.
“You’re going to… refine a treasure?” An expression of intense bewilderment indicated that Zhurong Cangshan thought he’d misheard.
Lu Yun inclined his head in confirmation. “I have some modest accomplishments in that field as well. Unfortunately, I came to the auction for the stone. If the senior needs the Lunar Wings or the Skydragon Tendon, however, I am happy to offer them to you!”
“Is this true?!” Zhurong Cangshan focused on Lu Yun with delirious zeal. “You—can—refine—treasures?” he pressed, word by measured word.
Lu Yun had shown off his terrifying pill refining skills only moments earlier, with the Heaven Descent Pill. After that, he’d conjured a formation out of thin air without needing to set down any foundations, a technique that countless formation masters could only dream of. Now he could refine treasures, too!?
With something as fine as the Ten Orientations Stone, to boot!
“Yes!” Lu Yun responded with absolute certainty. He’d tried to keep a low profile before, but an avalanche of trouble had come his way regardless. A little bit of pomp and affectation wasn’t all bad; at the very least, it would do a good job of warding off some of the flies.
More importantly, the more useful he showed himself to be, the more connections others would want to make with him. That was a different kind of defense.
If hiding was no use, why not come out straight into the open?
Zhurong Cangshan drew in a sharp breath at the bright-eyed youth’s answer.
“How are your refining abilities, compared to your skill in pills and formations?” he spoke with utmost solemnity. “The Ten Orientations Stone is one of the choicest materials in the immortal world. It contains a mysterious and profound energy that is tremendously fascinating, and I will not allow it to be wasted by a possible novice.”
Lu Yun smiled and waved a hand. A bright yellow flame jumped in his palm: Daevic Skyfire! The handful of embers bounced upwards, vanishing into the void. In the next moment, a tremendous rush of heat enveloped the surrounding half-kilometer of land or so. It was as if this patch of territory had become a great forge.
“Forge of earth and sky!” Zhurong Cangshan colored in shock.
Pill, equipment, formation, talisman: all four auxiliary daos had their own corresponding ultimate techniques: pill dao’s ‘medicinal properties reformation’, treasure dao’s ‘forge of earth and sky’, formation dao’s ‘formation without foundation’, and talisman dao’s ‘talisman of the void’!
Only a master of the appropriate discipline could comprehend these pinnacles of their craft, although it wasn’t guaranteed.
Gu Zun, Yue Longsha, and Wayfarer were all leading authorities in pill dao, but they were all incapable of medicinal properties reformation. The technique involved breaking down and reforming the properties of herbs to obtain new material that was needed, but unowned. It came very close to creating something out of nothing!
Once upon a time, Feinie had been hailed as the world of immortals’ Formation King. It wasn’t only because of her slaying of thirty-six peerless immortals, but also because of her mastery of the ‘formations without foundation’ technique.
In the span of an hour or two, Lu Yun had shown off both the pinnacle techniques of formation and refinement dao.
“Good, good, good… it’s been ten thousand years! I didn’t expect the forge of earth and sky to reappear, just like that!” Zhurong Cangshan recalled the girl prodigy who had astounded the whole world, only to die at the hands of the divines: Huang Qing.
The ‘forge of earth and sky’ drew upon the energies inherent in the land, using the laws of nature itself to aid in refining treasures! Alas, the technique had always been out of his personal reach.
Lu Yun wagged a finger, retrieving the Daevic Skyfire. Its source gone, the effects of the forge disappeared.
“Can you draw talismans, Lu Yun?” someone in the crowd blurted out.
Lu Yun squinted, then coughed with some embarrassment. “A little, I guess.”
Zhurong Cangshan blinked at the audience.
The crowd blinked back at him.
A long, befuddled silence stretched on.
The Lu Clan erupted in activity on this day, as enthusiastic as if it were the dawn of a new year.
After the calamity a hundred years ago, the clan’s slow recovery had only allowed it to return to a fraction of its former glory. Still, in the eyes of most, it was only a matter of time before it’d be forced to leave Mauve Peace Paradise.
Many factions had already chosen to distance themselves from the clan. But today, the world renowned master refiner, Zhurong Cangshan, had come calling on the dilapidated faction!
There’d been many in the clan who grumbled after Lu Yun had offended Gu Zun; well, they’d long since forgotten about that old fart by now. Zhurong Cangshan didn’t represent just himself; his entire family was behind him!
“Should I stop holding back? Is it time to break through to refined spirit realm?” Meditating inside hell, Lu Yun began seriously considering the question.
He’d received plenty of goodwill as of late. Aside from the gratefulness of his clansmen due to the inheritance tower, he had felt two powerful surges from the Qing Clan after saving his friend—from Qing Han’s parents, no doubt. Resolving the Chen Clan’s crisis had also earned him Chen Dongyu’s gratitude.
“Qing Ruyan felt genuine sincerity for me, too. She didn’t have ulterior motives.”
He recalled the astonishing rush of goodwill upon her consumption of the Heaven Descent Pill; he’d nearly lost control and broken through on the spot. He would’ve done it, too, had it been any other time.
But ever since finding out that the path of cultivation was also broken partway through, he no longer dared risk it. The spirit realm was especially important, and he wanted to keep his options open with regard to what came next. The ancient immortals hadn’t noticed it, because there’d been no cultivators, per se, back then.
“Breaking through can wait. I’m going to explore that tomb first!” He took a deep breath, stifling his desire to break through once more.
A fist-sized rock appeared between his fingers. It didn’t look big, but it weighed more than a hundred tons. Its surface was as black as pitch—no, more like a minor black hole that swallowed up all surrounding light.
It was none other than the Ten Orientations Stone.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
LOL at how someone asked if he can do talismans too!