Lu Ping contained his excitement from entering the Ninth Layer and spent the next month consolidating his cultivation breakthrough. With the help of Blood Vigor Pellets, Lu Ping quickly stabilized his cultivation base and improved greatly.
The Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm was an important period between the Blood Refining Realm and Blood Condensation Realm.
In order for a mortal to become a cultivator, the first thing they had to do was awaken their bloodlines.
Legends have it that all living beings in this world are descendants of the Heaven Cleaving Seven Primes. Hence, everyone had seven types of spirit bloodlines in their body. Only by awakening these bloodlines could a mortal start absorbing spiritual energy from the heaven and earth, thus strengthening their bloodlines. This state was also known as the Blood Refining Realm.
After cultivating to the Ninth Layer in the Blood Refining Realm, all seven bloodlines in the cultivator’s body would be fully awakened. The cultivator’s next step would then be the Blood Condensation Realm.
In this realm, the cultivator must choose one out of the seven bloodlines to cultivate. The chosen bloodline would siphon all the spiritual energy of the other bloodlines, so it would eventually become the one and only bloodline in the cultivator’s body.
During the process, the cultivator must also absorb the same type of spirit blood as the chosen bloodline to make up for the lack of bloodlines in his body. And this was the entire cultivation process for the Blood Condensation Realm.
Since Lu Ping was now at the Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm, he would have to select one of the seven bloodlines, also known as their ‘foundation bloodline’.
But Lu Ping hadn’t decided on anything yet. For now, his focus was to reach the peak of the Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm and get himself a Blood Condensing Pellet. Only then would he think about advancing into the Blood Condensation Realm.
One day, after his cultivation, Lu Ping went to the market as usual to sell off the charms he’d crafted. Afterwards, he bought three bottles of Blood Essence Pellets from Zhen Ling Sect’s medicinal house. In the blink of an eye, he not only spent all the spirit stones earned from selling the charms, he also had to pull out more spirit stones just to afford the medicinal pellets.
After entering the Ninth Layer, his consumption of medicinal pellets had suddenly increased. The difference was apparent when comparing how Lu Ping used the higher quality Blood Solidifying Pellets and Blood Vigor Pellets in his cultivation previously. Now, although the Blood Essence Pellets were cheaper, they contained less spiritual energy within which would inevitably slow down his cultivation progress.
But even with just the Blood Essence Pellets, the cost of medicinal pellets was still climbing up month after month. If not for his wealth and the income from charm-crafting, he would be facing the same issue of lacking cultivation resources just like most of the cultivators out there.
This was already taking into account his improvement in charm-crafting after advancing a cultivation layer. Especially thanks to the high-quality charm papers he bought at the trade fair. Because of them, Lu Ping seldom failed in charm-crafting anymore after his breakthrough to the Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm.
But alchemy, that was the real profitable profession!
After returning to the side hall, Lu Ping was notified to go to Master Immortal Liu for his training mission this year. After arriving at Master Immortal Liu’s cultivation room, he realized that he wasn’t the only one summoned. The other eight disciples from Group 7 who were in the Eighth Layer were also there.
The disciples bowed and greeted Master Immortal Liu. Then, they heard him saying happily, “Lu Ping’s cultivation has entered the Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm. Good, very good! Now then, that makes four Ninth Layer disciples in our Group 7. We’re not inferior to Group 1!”
The disciples were all surprised to learn about Lu Ping’s speedy cultivation progress.
But Master Immortal Liu didn’t go on about it. He went straight to the topic at hand and announced their training mission for the year: They were to be deployed to Xuan Qi Island on a three-year training mission.
The Grade 3 disciples in the side hall were all obliged to carry out the sect’s assigned missions for their last three years.
Presently, the conflict between Xuan Ling Sect and Zhen Ling Sect had eased up and Xuan Qi Island was officially part of Zhen Ling Sect now. Hence, Zhen Ling Sect would have to deploy its Blood Refining Realm disciples to oversee and guard the sixteen mini islands under Xuan Qi Island’s jurisdiction.
As Group 7 had a role in the occupation of Xuan Qi Island, they were naturally more familiar with its surrounding areas. Hence, it was no surprise they were given this task.
After leaving Master Immortal Liu’s place, Lu Ping’s intuition told him that the training mission wouldn’t be a peaceful one.
Xuan Ling Sect suffered a big loss from the conflict, especially the small spirit stone mine on Xuan Qi Island. Lu Ping didn’t think Xuan Ling Sect would let go of that island so easily. He decided to proceed with caution. After all, the training mission would last for three years—no one could predict what might happen in that span of time.
As they were ordered to leave for Xuan Qi Island three days later, Lu Ping didn’t have much time left.
He visited the market again and immediately went to Zhen Ling Sect’s Pavilion of Smith.
After the last training mission, Lu Ping now had a total of 85 contribution points which were more than enough to exchange for a mid-grade mystic instrument. The only reason he had yet to do so was due to the lack in variety of mystic instruments sold in the Pavillion of Smith, unlike the vast selection available around the market. Although the quality of their mystic instruments was guaranteed, none of them were considered extraordinary.
But the mission was quite urgent, and Lu Ping didn’t have the time to search the market stores for a better mystic instrument. His only option was to buy an ordinary mid-grade mystic instrument from the Pavillion of Smith that he could use for the time being.
A common mid-grade mystic instrument costs at least 50 contribution points; superior mystic instruments or those with special abilities would cost more, sometimes reaching up to a hundred contribution points.
Lu Ping looked around and eventually decided that the most practical piece of equipment was a flying sword. With 65 contribution points, he got himself a Flying Feather Sword. He looked at his remaining 20 contribution points and shook his head, lamenting inwardly at the expensive price. On the other hand, it would cost at least 200 spirit stones to buy a Flying Feather Sword in the market. Lu Ping suddenly felt a lot better—he still saved a lot.
After exiting the Pavilion of Smith, Lu Ping passed by Zhen Ling Sect’s Medicinal Pellet Store. He pondered a while before deciding to take a look inside.
The medicinal pellets sold inside were mostly for Blood Refining Realm disciples and lower-layer Blood Condensation Realm cultivators. So the medicinal pellets available were the more common ones. Lu Ping looked around and the only suitable medicinal pellets for him were the Blood Essence Pellets. He shook his head in disappointment and was ready to leave.
One of the store’s workers noticed Lu Ping’s intention to leave and he casually asked, “Master Immortal, are there no suitable medicinal pellets that interest you?”
Lu Ping was about to leave when he heard this question, so he casually replied, “Just looking for medicinal pellets for the Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm. Anything other than Blood Essence Pellets, but there aren’t any here.”
The worker smiled. “It’s not that we don’t have any. The store master has his ways around it. But because such medicinal pellets are limited in number, they’re usually sold to familiar cultivators or cultivators with backgrounds. Ordinary cultivators can only buy the common medicinal pellets provided by the sect.”
Lu Ping nodded in enlightenment. Zhen Ling Sect was a big sect, it wouldn’t make sense if it couldn’t concoct the higher quality medicinal pellets. Although superior to Blood Essence Pellets, they were still just Blood Refining Realm medicinal pellets, it was only natural that the sect’s alchemists wouldn’t pay much attention to them.
But Zhen Ling Sect also needed its own income. It was just that in comparison to the other Blood Refining Realm medicinal pellets, the Blood Essence Pellets were more suitable to sell. Obviously, the reason behind that wouldn’t be divulged to the public.
Lu Ping noticed the fishy expression on the worker’s face and he immediately pieced the situation together. He handed over ten spirit stones and smiled humbly while saying, “I have no clue about all these things. Please, Little Brother, enlighten me!”
The worker openly put away the spirit stones and handed another list of medicinal pellets to Lu Ping. It seemed like he was prepared for this.
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