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NETS - Chapter 147 – Sixth Layer

At the same time, on the other side.

Lu Ping suddenly paused and turned to look towards the registry, then continued to enter the alchemy room.

It’s really him!

Lu Ping slowly retracted his divine sense. The person talking to the cultivator at the registry was none other than Tao Zi-Fang, whom Lu Ping had bumped into at Pavilion of Alchemy’s entrance a while ago.

In fact, Lu Ping had already sensed the scheme the moment he saw the alchemy boy in the hall.

At that time, after seeing the names of the selected medicinal pellets on the bamboo sticks, the Alchemy Assessment Enlightened Master had glanced at the boy with a thoughtful gaze, causing the boy to sweat nervously. Naturally, Lu Ping noticed this exchange and paid attention to it.

Sure enough, the chosen medicinal pellets turned out to be the two most difficult to concoct. The registry cultivator’s attitude clearly proved that someone was deliberately making things difficult for him.

Until the end, when he had left, the man responsible finally showed himself, who turned out to be Tao Zi-Fang.

Lu Ping smiled and he looked at the small alchemy room in front of him.

The floor had inscriptions of an array formation which connected to the Fire Gathering Chassis in the center. It appeared to be the Fire Gathering Array, which could draw in lava fire from the depths of the earth.

Above the Fire Gathering Chassis was a low-grade alchemy cauldron. The cauldron’s surface was worn, obviously due to frequent use.

Lu Ping sat himself in front of the alchemy cauldron and calmed his heart and mind. This was his first time using a low-grade alchemy cauldron and ordinary lava fire to concoct medicinal pellets.

Although he hadn’t received any guidance in his alchemy, his starting point was relatively higher than the rest with his mid-grade cauldron and heaven-and-earth spirit fire.

Hence, it would certainly be a challenge for him this time.

After adjusting his state of mind, he took a deep breath. As his arcane energy surged, he made a series of nine hand seals.

A light blue flame suddenly erupted from the Fire Gathering Chassis in front of him, and the temperature in the alchemy room rose steeply.

Lu Ping used his divine sense to carefully observe the characteristics of the fire. Not only was the fire’s temperature fluctuating greatly, the fire also lacked a sense of sacred spirituality. As a result, Lu Ping was forced to expend a lot of energy to control the fire’s performance throughout the entire process.

Such was the difference between an ordinary fire and a heaven-and-earth spirit fire.

Lu Ping spent far longer than his usual time to preheat the cauldron, liquefy the spirit herbs, refine and merge their medicinal properties, and concoct the medicinal paste into pellets.

Correspondingly, this greatly increased the consumption of his divine sense and arcane energy.

Two whole days had passed since Lu Ping began concocting his first cauldron of medicinal pellets. Finally, Lu Ping performed eighteen hand seals in a row. His arcane energy surged out into the low-grade cauldron, accompanied by a series of rumbling noises, and the room was instantly filled with the fragrance of medicinal pellets.

Lu Ping waved his hand to open the cauldron lid, taking out six portions of Thousand Mystery Pellets from the cauldron.

Lu Ping sighed helplessly, only six medicinal pellets were made, which meant a sixty percent success rate.

If he’d used his mid-grade cauldron and Azure Spirit Fire, the success rate would have increased to eighty or even ninety percent.

Lu Ping shook off these distracting thoughts and began to prepare for the Crimson Blood Pellets.

His usual success rate for Late Blood Condensation medicinal pellets was only between sixty to seventy percent.

Although Lu Ping felt that his alchemy had greatly improved after his success with the Beauty Everlasting Pellets, the use of the lava fire and low-grade cauldron had offset this improvement. He was only half-certain that he would pass the test.

However, after becoming more familiar with the lava fire and low-grade cauldron, he gradually restored his confidence.

Still, he ended up making a slight mistake at the final moment. This was mostly due to the excessive consumption of his divine sense as well as the conflicting reaction between the fire-element medicinal pellets and his water-element arcane energy.

After opening the cauldron lid, only four Crimson Blood Pellets were concocted. Lu Ping was nonetheless relieved to see this result.

Although he had refined many Blood Spirit Pellets, this was his first time concocting Crimson Blood Pellets, which were fire-element Blood Spirit Pellets. It was inevitable that he lacked this particular item.

Sure enough, after some rest, Lu Ping easily achieved a fifty-percent success rate for his second cauldron of Crimson Blood Pellets.

Lu Ping had initially planned to concoct Thousand Mystery Pellets with the remaining cauldron, but on second thought, these medicinal pellets would eventually be given to the sect for free, and he wouldn’t receive anything in return, so he gave up on the idea.

In the back hall of the Pavilion of Alchemy, the Alchemy Assessment Enlightened Master looked at Lu Ping's delivery of six Thousand Mystery Pellets, nine Crimson Blood Pellets, and a cauldron of spirit herb ingredients for Thousand Mystery Pellets.

The Enlightened Master nodded in approval and said, "As expected of an Alchemist who succeeded in concocting Quasi-Master-level medicinal pellets. Even when disturbed by external forces, you can easily succeed."

The Alchemy Assessment Enlightened Master gave Lu Ping a meaningful smile.

Then, he took Lu Ping’s identity plate and made a seal on it before handing it back. "With this seal, you are now qualified to be an Alchemist in the sect. As a privilege, you can buy a quantity of spirit herbs every year at eighty percent the market price. However, should there be an emergency alchemy mission, you are required to respond to the sect's call."

Lu Ping nodded and said, "It's only natural to contribute back to the sect. I’d like to buy my quota of spirit herbs for this year first!"

Huang Li Island.

After Lu Ping returned from the Pavilion of Alchemy, he gathered his friends together and had a great time with Yao Yong and the others on the island.

When they heard that Lu Ping had become an official disciple under Enlightened Master Liu Xuan-Ling, they reacted with envy and surprise.

Zhong Jian said with a sour tone, "Among our group of friends, you’re the only one who became an official disciple in one go. Well, aside from Yao Yong and Junior Sister Shi Lingling. But even Junior Sister Leng Qian spent three years before she became an official disciple. The rest of us are still registered disciples!"

Lu Ping smiled bitterly. "Speaking of which, I heard Enlightened Master Xuan Sheng say that I was recommended by his teacher, who was also Teacher’s husband. But I don't know who this Enlightened Master is yet, I only know that his last name is Jiang!"

"Stupid!"

Shi Lingling jumped in and said, "Of course it's Enlightened Master Jiang Xuan-Lin, the 'Seven Sages' of our sect. The only one who can match up to Enlightened Master Liu Xuan-Ling can only be Senior Uncle Jiang Xuan-Lin!"

Lu Ping laughed. "Sure enough, I guessed it was him. But I noticed that my teacher didn’t seem to like mentioning Enlightened Master Jiang, so I didn’t dare to ask much."

Yao Yong heard Shi Lingling's words and grew curious. "I’ve also heard my senior martial brothers talking about the 'Seven Sages' before. I only know that my teacher, Enlightened Master Qu Xuan-Cheng, is the 'Fire Spirit' of their group, but I don't know who the other six are. Junior Sister Shi, do you know of them?"

Shi Lingling shook her head and said, "The 'Seven Sages’' are the titles of seven Enlightened Masters in our sect who made a name for themselves more than a hundred years ago. All of them are now Late Core Forging Enlightened Masters and they spend most of their time in seclusion or traveling, and preparing to break through to the Avatar Realm. Only a few disciples can see them on occasion.

"I only know because I sometimes hear my father talking about it. He said that Senior Uncle Jiang is the head of the ‘Three Upper’, and Junior Aunt Liu is the head of the 'Four Lower. But I don’t know about the rest!"

After the crowd dispersed, Lu Ping went into intense cultivation.

He had gained a lot of insights from Enlightened Master Liu's cultivation forum, and he urgently needed to apply this accumulation of knowledge into his cultivation.

Therefore, Lu Ping spent most of his time either in closed-door cultivation or practicing his alchemy, going outside only for his monthly five-day sea patrols,

Occasionally, he would visit Master Immortal Liu for advice on his cultivation, or take some unused medicinal pellets he had concocted and stock up his Charms and Pellets Store. He had now entrusted Hu Lili and Fang Tao to help him acquire spirit herbs.

After more than a year of such enriching cultivation, Lu Ping’s cultivation progress was finally improving by leaps and bounds again.

Arcane energy flowed through his veins like a rushing river. There was a swirl of arcane energy in his heart; faint traces of essence were extracted from his arcane energy and flowed into the Condensed Blood Beads in his heartspace.

Finally, as the five Condensed Blood Beads in his heartspace were expanded to their limits, the Jiao Bloodline that had secured an absolute position once again developed an insatiable lust for energy, and began to move against the other bloodlines.

This time, its target was the Fire Cicada Bloodline, and it quickly devoured it like a hungry ghoul.

When Lu Ping spat out the wasted Cicada Bloodline, along with a mouthful of blood, the sixth Condensed Blood Bead in his heartspace was formed and rapidly expanded to a third in size of the other five Condensed Blood Beads.

With that, he had finally reached the Sixth Layer Blood Condensation Realm—Lu Ping couldn’t contain his joy!

On this day, Lu Ping had just finished his daily cultivation when Chen Lian came to knock on his door.

Chen Lian greedily breathed in the spiritual energy in Lu Ping's cave and exclaimed, "The air is always refreshing every time I come here! Why do I feel that the concentration of spiritual energy has increased again?"

Lu Ping laughed and said, "You’re quite perceptive. My teacher gave me a Spirit Gathering Pearl."

"Spirit Gathering Pearl! No wonder!"

Chen Lian was a little surprised, but then smiled. "My teacher gave me a gift too, a complete set of fire control techniques, which is very useful for smithing. It’s also much better than the fire control technique that my old man passed on to me."

Lu Ping joyfully noticed that Chen Lian had also broken through to the Seventh Layer Blood Condensation Realm. "So I see Senior Brother’s cultivation has reached the Late Blood Condensation Realm. This means Enlightened Master Xuan-Huo must have accepted you as his official disciple, right? No wonder he gave you a set of fire control techniques."

Chen Lian nodded rather smugly and said, "Hey, you're not bad yourself. Sixth Layer? You're about to enter the Late Blood Condensation Realm as well."

Lu Ping sighed. "How can I compare with you guys? My progress was delayed in the monster race sea for five years while everyone's cultivation level has only continued to rise. Senior Brother Yao Yong was the first to enter the Late Blood Condensation Realm, followed by Senior Sister Shi Lingling and then Senior Sister Leng Qian shortly after.

"I heard that Senior Brother Du Feng, Senior Brother Zhong Jian and Senior Sister Ma Yu also went into seclusion to break through for that very purpose. Now that you’ve also broken through, I’ve become nothing but a drag to our group of friends."

Chen Lian laughed and scolded him, "Come on, who dares to say that? Even Yao Yong, who has the highest cultivation level among us, admits that he’s no match for you. The others feel the same way."

Lu Ping laughed, but didn’t answer.

"By the way, do you have any more Spirit Stout Stones?" Chen Lian finished exchanging pleasantries with him and finally explained his intention.

"Yes, why? Are there a lot of orders for defensive mystic instruments these days?"

Lu Ping remembered that he had just dug out thousands of pounds of Spirit Stout Stones from that secret mine not long ago, and after refining them, they were enough for Chen Lian to forge a few high-grade defensive mystic instruments.

"That’s right!"

Chen Lian's face was a bit grim. "In the last year, the situation in the monster race sea has become more intense. A large number of Blood Condensation monsters have begun to surface and they’re striking back against the cultivators in the monster race sea in an organized manner. In the beginning, the human cultivators still had a slight advantage, but now both races are evenly matched.

"As a result, with the growing number of fallen cultivators, those who survived have also secured larger harvests during their trips. As the saying goes: high risk, high return. So, the number of cultivators going hunting in the monster race sea keeps increasing, and the demand for defensive mystic instruments has gone up as well."

RD's Notes:

Weekly Chapters (5/5)
Editor: MilkBiscuit

RD: Now we are back on track~

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Currently translated up to Chapter 160.
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Written by SleepingAutumn. Translated by RD. Edited by Milkbiscuit, Immortal BloodRogue.