Chapter 369: Lackey for Life
“The second exam, matching spirit medicines. As we all know, there are medicines that naturally counteract or complement each other. A qualified pill refiner must have sophisticated knowledge in the area of matching. Otherwise, if he doesn't even know how to match spirit medicines, or doesn’t even understand whether medicines are a good fit for each other, then it will be impossible for him to become a strong pill refiner.”
The examiner smiled. “There are 32 kinds of spirit medicines in the second exam. Please match them accordingly. Remember, they won’t necessarily be matched in pairs. This exam tests your knowledge of medicine effects and the understanding of how they might complement each other or not.”
This were all basic knowledge that a pill refiner would know. It wasn't unfamiliar to either Jiang Chen or Tang Hong.
Tang Hong had a look of eagerness on his face. After his loss in the first exam, his battle spirit had been fired up and he was filled with even more competitive spirit.
This was a person who battled even more fiercely in adverse conditions.
Jiang Chen was noncommittal, maintaining his unrushed and unhurried attitude. There was nothing for him to grow anxious about in the field of spirit medicines.
There was also no one who could give him pressure.
Tang Hong started almost as soon as the examiner finished speaking.
Jiang Chen smiled and he walked to the pile of spirit medicines for a close, individual look after he’d performed some chest stretches.
He looked them over three times. His fingers then suddenly flew like he was a most adept magician performing a wondrous piece of magic.
He matched all 32 medicines in the span of two breaths.
In pairs or triples, he made 13 matches total.
“Finished again?” The examiner was surprised to see Jiang Chen raise his hand. Jiang Chen’s previous speed in identifying spirit medicines had already greatly stunned him.
The difficulty level was without a doubt, even greater this time. It wasn’t just a matter of identification, but also applying one’s knowledge.
Even the examiner felt that he’d be hard pressed to match Jiang Chen’s speed.
Jiang Chen nodded and walked out. The examiner was a bit skeptical, but his expression shifted slightly when he drew close.
The matching had been done completely correctly, without the slightest error.
Tang Hong on the other side, scratched his head and pulled on his ears for quite a while before finishing. When he walked out however, he found that Jiang Chen had led the way by quite a margin again.
“One victory left.” Jiang Chen extended a finger and grinned slyly.
Dejection was written all over Tang Hong’s face. He was already performing above his usual level! He thought that he’d be able to win for sure this time. But alas, reality is cruel.
“Hot damn, did you dream about this exam, kid?” In Tang Hong’s understanding, he couldn’t imagine a secular disciple displaying such perverse abilities. Just how familiar would he have to be with the spirit medicines to have such speed?
He couldn’t think of any other reasons anymore.
Jiang Chen chuckled. “Even if I dreamed of it, I would still win.”
Tang Hong snorted. “Don’t be too proud just yet. It’s not over!”
Only two exams had been conducted. There were three more left, and so Tang Hong felt that he still had hope to turn back a disadvantageous situation.
As long as he won the remaining three, it would still be a walk in the park in the end.
“The third exam, identification of pill recipes. There are ten recipes here. Some are correct and, some are erroneous. Leave the correct ones alone and point out the errors in the ones that are wrong.”
“Remember, your identification rate must reach six recipes to count as having passed. Your bet is one thing, don’t just pursue speediness and impact your efficiency.”
The examiner gave them a kind reminder.
Identifying recipes was delicate work. If a candidate strived for speed above all else, it would be very easy to make a mistake. They would be put down as having failed as soon as their identification rate dipped below sixty percent, and lose all five points.
Jiang Chen smiled. The thought of failing had never crossed his mind.
The four foundation missions of martial dao, strength of heart, pills, and the combination.
He was most confident in the area of pills.
Even though he was equally confident in the other areas, if he dared say he was number two for the dao of pills however, no one would dare say that they’re number one!
All ten recipes were placed in front of him.
He looked over each of them one by one. None of them were particularly complicated recipes.
There were eight that had errors. Some had only a few mistakes and others had riddled with them.
Jiang Chen checked off the two correct pill recipes and he began writing on the other eight.
He didn’t perform above his usual level. In fact, he used the simplest language possible to point out the mistakes.
He’d finished the exam in about fifteen minutes.
Beside him, Tang Hong was obviously not finished. There were two recipes in particular that he was unsure about. He considered them for quite some time and he barely managed to squeeze out an answer at the end.
When Jiang Chen handed in his recipes, surprise flashed through the examiner’s eyes. He pursued the submission with a furrowed brow and he became more shocked the more he read.
He thought that the secular genius had been too cocky and was sure of himself in handing in his answers so early. He was bound to not have any good answers.
But when the examiner took a careful look, this questionnaire was completely perfect with full marks.
The examiner looked meaningfully at Jiang Chen, shocked to the core. He also threw a sympathetic look at Tang Hong at the same time, feeling an inexplicable surge of pity for him.
When Tang Hong gleefully handed in his answers, he noticed that the examiner giving him a pitying look, whereas Jiang Chen was standing off on the side and smiling faintly.
“He… was faster than me again?”
The examiner smiled wordlessly and nodded.
“No worries, what if his identification rate wasn’t 60%? It’s still his loss if he didn’t pass.” Tang Hong felt that Jiang Chen must’ve been pursuing speed in handing in his exam so early, and forgoing correctness. Haste made for waste.
The examiner continued with the pitying look, “His identification rate was 100% without a single error. Let me take a look at yours.”
An explosion went off in Tang Hong’s mind as he was thrown in disarray.
He’d lost, again? How could he have failed utterly in all three exams?
“H-how is this possible?” Poor Tang Hong’s mind was finding it difficult to operate at the moment. He felt that he’d been utterly defeated.
“However strong you may be, there’s always someone stronger. Tang Hong, do you fully concede this time?” The examiner also laughed.
Tang Hong’s large fan hands kept scratching at his red hair. Dejection was written across his face as he looked at Jiang Chen and he couldn’t help but mutter, “What a weirdo.”
After being depressed for a moment however, Tang Hong smiled. “I, Tang Hong, have never conceded to anyone. But today, I truly do. You’re the first to make me concede in the area of spirit medicines. Alright! I call you boss willingly and wholeheartedly. I, Tang Hong, am willing to accept my defeat. I will be your lackey and follower life from now on!”
“However, the bet hasn’t ended yet! Although I’ve lost, I’m going to do so gloriously. I’m going to fight to lose 2:3, and not by 0:5.”
There were still two exams left out of the possible five. Although Tang Hong had already lost, if he could win the last two, his scores would look not that bad at least.
The fourth and fifth exam had to do with practical application, which was refining pills.
Tang Hong had even less of an advantage in this area, but Jiang Chen had discovered that although Tang Hong liked to gamble, his attitude upon losing wasn’t poor and so he wasn’t a bad sort.
Jiang Chen purposely stayed his hand and lost one of the two pill refining exams. He did so very deftly and naturally, leaving not a trace of evidence.
With the final score of 1:4, although Tang Hong had lost, he hadn’t lost everything.
The examiner seemed to have guessed something, but he didn’t say anything. He awarded 25 points to both geniuses.
“Today’s bet was a sight to see. I wish such amazing performances could be seen everyday in the pill examination area.” The examiner spoke with some emotion.
If he hadn’t been the one in charge of these exams, he almost wanted to suspect if someone had leaked the contents of the exams to the secular genius.
However, he’d been the one to random select all the exam topics. It wasn’t that easy to leak them and thus, no matters of cheating possible.
“Boss, where are you going? Wait for me! Hey!” Tang Hong started chasing after Jiang Chen when he saw the latter was leaving.
Someone walked in just as they’d reached the door. This person started when he heard Tang Hong call him boss, then started laughing oddly. “Tang Hong, have you finally submitted to me and are calling me boss?”
Tang Hong blinked. Who the hell is this shameless person?
When he took a good look at the person in front of him, Tang Hong started cursing loudly, “Get the hell outta my face! Keep dreaming your idiotic dreams! I call you Boss?! Who the hell do you think you are?”
Jiang Chen also paused when he saw the newcomer, but he actually knew this person. It was Iron Dazhi, heir to the Iron family in the Precious Tree Sect.
This fellow had wanted to cause some trouble for Jiang Chen in the Skylaurel Kingdom and he had been thoroughly ripped off instead. This fellow was a walking moneybag in Jiang Chen’s eyes.
Therefore, when he thought of those happy memories of swindling the Iron family when he saw Iron Dazhi, he actually didn’t look at Iron Dazhi with an irritated gaze. Who would dislike someone bearing gifts?
Jiang Chen dearly wished that such opportunities would come a few more times. The Iron family was simply too rich, they were almost swimming in their wealth.
However, he didn’t forget his current identity. He was the freak genius of the boulder’s heart, not Jiang Chen.
Iron Dazhi obviously didn’t think much of secular cultivators as he swept a careless glance over Jiang Chen, halting on Tang Hon’s face.
Iron Dazhi sniggered, “Did you call me boss just now? Apart from us of the same sect here, who else is worthy of being your boss?”
Iron Dazhi was a few years older than Tang Hong, and both were sect geniuses.
However, Tang Hong’s potential was actually a bit better than Iron Dazhi’s. But, Iron Dazhi had been born to a good station in life and he had reincarnated well.
After he’d had his butt handed to him by Jiang Chen last time, his grandfather Iron Long had shut him into closed door cultivation after he returned and Iron Dazhi had gained quite a bit.
After exiting from closed door cultivation, he’d gone from fifth level spirit realm to sixth level with a shake of his body, the peak of the earth spirit realm.
Therefore, he had quite a bit of confidence in front of Tang Hong.
Although he was a direct descendant of the Iron family in the Precious Tree Sect, he didn’t have many quality confidantes or followers.
Guys like Zhou Yi were his best lackeys.
However, compared to Tang Hong, Zhou Yi paled far in comparison. Therefore, Iron Dazhi had indeed wanted to pull Tang Hong into his camp and have this follower advise him.
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