The segment for questions had been hotly anticipated by not only wandering cultivators, but also the heavyweights sitting in the guest section. Although some of them were irked by Jiang Chen self-styling himself as foremost in pill dao, feeling that the young man was simply too cocky, they couldn’t find any proper words to refute him with.
The Pinecrane Pill and Emperor Supremacy Pill were enough to cement his position in the pill dao world, to say nothing of anything else. Besides, he welcomed any and all challengers. This was a proclamation that almost none of the pill dao heavyweights, whether currently active or retired, had ever dared issue.
That kind of overweening tone made for a lofty announcement, but at a high cost. If someone really did take one up on the offer and defeated the issuer, then the issuer would’ve lost all face and reputation.
Therefore, young lord Zhen’s actions came off as a newborn calf unafraid of a tiger. He’d grown too full of himself after a little bit of achievement.
But then again, young people could afford to be that cocky. The advantage of youth was that it didn’t matter if one was defeated. If those hermit experts actually did emerge from seclusion to teach the young lord a lesson, the young man might even be more delighted and proud of himself — such were the thoughts of some of the guests.
They had no idea that Jiang Chen had carefully considered all of his words before voicing them. There were countless wandering cultivators present, but not many would have the chance to raise a question.
The first ten had been selected, one of them being the sect heavyweights in the guest area.
“Young lord Zhen, my question is, who is the senior you respect the most in the world of pill dao?”
This wasn’t a technical question at all, and it elicited uproarious laughter when it appeared. The crowd plainly loved it and might have even felt it more interesting than a serious question.
Jiang Chen wanted to ignore it, but realized how much wandering cultivators liked gossip when he heard them laugh kindly. Since they wanted to gossip, he decided to go with the flow.
“I haven't had the chance to interact with that many seniors in the world of pill dao, neither have I visited many of them. I don’t actually have anyone in mind right now, but I do admire two young geniuses.”
“Oh?” This response piqued the crowd’s curiosity as well. It was equally interesting to learn about which geniuses the young lord admired.
“Yeah, which two, young lord Zhen?”
“The two are named Mu Gaoqi and Lin Yanyu. They’re both in my residence now. Gaoqi, Yanyu, let everyone get to know you.”
The two hadn't thought that Jiang Chen would call their names, but they had some worldly experience and immediately stood up. The two were only mid level pill kings, but that was a high level for their age.
“Young lord Zhen, you’re favoring your own people!” Someone called out.
Jiang Chen smiled faintly. “That's right. I am indeed introducing talents from my own Sacred Peafowl Mountain. Acknowledgement of talent shouldn't be avoided because of ties of kinship. Mu Gaoqi has an innate wood constitution of the highest order and unparalleled pill dao potential. His body is a treasure vault, one that will launch him into the stratosphere of legendary pill emperors in the future. Lin Yanyu’s potential is slightly lower than Mu Gaoqi’s, but he’s studied pill dao since young and has a grasp of it that no one else has. He will also surely become a legend in the pill dao world in the future as well. Mark my words, two more pill dao stars will appear in the human domain in one to two hundred more years!”
“Young lord Zhen, there are many young geniuses in Pillfire City. Are none of them on par with your people?”
Jiang Chen smiled blandly. “Is that a question as well?”
Obviously not. “I didn’t get a slot, but I just don’t agree. Pillfire City’s the foremost faction in pill dao. Do their geniuses really not measure up to yours?”
Jiang Chen chuckled. “I’ll make an exception for this. The reason’s simple. My people are of Sacred Peafowl Mountain and they spend their days learning from me. One day, they’ll surpass those so-called Pillfire City geniuses.”
His response was quite domineering, resulting in a tidal wave of applause.
“Damn straight, young lord Zhen! I like you!”
“That's right! So what about Pillfire City? Yeah they’re pretty strong, but they’re not as generous as young lord Zhen!”
“The young lord is so young so his potential is definitely greater. I feel that in the long run, the young lord will absolutely surpass that Pillfire City.”
Even many seated in the guest area couldn't help themselves and clap. The elder of Empyrean River Palace however, had a darkened expression on his face before schooling it back to indifference. Master Dong Ye of the Sublime Chord Temple looked at Jiang Chen on the stage with a complicated expression, wariness flashing through the depths of his eyes. Long Baxiang of the Heavenly Dragon Sect privately gnashed his teeth. He still had his eyes set on Jiang Chen’s true dragon. That was the real priority.
“Young lord Zhen, I have the second question. I have one about pill dao for you. I once saw a partial recipe in an ancient tome, but it was missing one of the supplemental ingredients. I’ve been studying it all along, wanting to fill in the blank. But we haven’t been able to no matter what we’ve tried. Can you give us some advice, young lord?”
Jiang Chen smiled. “What’s the primary ingredient?”
“Dragonwhisker Whitesilver Fruit.”
Dragonwhisker Whitesilver Fruit? Jiang Chen thought for a moment, mentally flipping through recipes. “Is the fire attribute Gale Ginseng one of the supplemental ingredients?”
“Then the water attribute Supple Snow Root?”
“Yes!” The cultivator’s eyes lit up. “That’s one of them. Do you know it, young lord Zhen?”
“More or less. Tell me the first character of each of the other ingredients and I’ll be able to tell you what you’re missing.” Jiang Chen was doing so to keep the secret. If all of the ingredients were revealed, then so was the recipe. Though it wouldn’t be copied in its entirety, it’d no longer be exclusive.
The cultivator was delighted and took a moment before reeling off characters.
The young lord smiled after listening to the list. “I know which one’s missing. You’re missing a bit of Goldcoin Jadeite, and almost fully mature at that. It’ll affect the primary ingredient if it’s too mature.”
“Almost mature Goldcoin Jadeite?” The cultivator was overjoyed. “Thank you so much, young lord Zhen! If this recipe can be completed, you’ll be my born-again parents, young lord!”
Jiang Chen flashed an easy smile. He understood that this was a very precious recipe for wandering cultivators. It would absolutely be a source of wealth if research bore results. It wasn't much in his eyes given his current height, but to a wandering cultivator, it would change his life.
“Go back and study it well. There aren’t any mistakes with it. If you succeed, it would completely change your fate.” Jiang Chen encouraged.
The cultivator was overcome with gratitude and bowed respectfully towards Jiang Chen before melting back into the crowd. The scene appeared incredibly bizarre to the eyes of others. Many shot stunned glances at Jiang Chen, at a loss for words after his performance.
They even wondered if this had been rehearsed beforehand. Otherwise, how could the young lord just-so-happen to fill in the blanks of a recipe from a random stranger in the crowd? Was it coincidence or heaven-defying?
No matter how skilled one was in in pill dao, there was still a limit to the amount of knowledge grasped. It was impossible to complete a pill recipe with just a few words.
Was young lord Zhen a pill dao encyclopedia?
The elder from the Empyrean River Palace couldn’t hold himself in. “Young lord Zhen, this seems a bit like child’s play. If you pre-arrange everything, aren’t you just lying to us all then?”
Honestly, what had happened really did come across as a planted shill. It was simply too outrageous to be genuine. Long Baxiang also sniggered. “Young lord Zhen, I’m not trying to make trouble for you, but some more effort should’ve gone into this fake.”
Jiang Chen smiled with detachment. “Gentlemen, you’re doing this just to try to provoke me. But I’m rather happy instead of angry. Do you know why? Your frustrated and harassed countenances are proof that my Dragon and Tiger Meet has been successful.”
“Hmph. A glib tongue as always.” Long Baxiang sniffed coldly. “Dare you say that you didn’t arrange for all of this? I’ll be the last to believe that you could just so happen to fill in the missing part of a random pill recipe. That’s much too legendary. Do you think wandering cultivators are fools to be so easily lied to and pawns for you to use?”
“This isn’t the first time, Long Baxiang!” Emperor Peerless suddenly thundered. “I know you won’t accept it if I throw you out, but there’s no place for you after your repeated targeting of my young lord.”
The sect head threw his head back in laughter. “Mo Wushuang, I would’ve shown you some respect before, but do you think I care about your opinions now after you’ve become someone else’s dog?”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
I know the last chapter turned some folks off... for a change of pace, check out my other novel, Return of the Swallow? :D Smart MC, shades of gray villains, and no filler *huehue*.