Zhao Jiutian’s heart skipped a beat. A foreboding premonition rose in his heart but he immediately pressed it down.
This competition was related to the treasure furnace’s remnant spirit, so it was one that their Cleansing Temple had to win. All backup preparations had been completed, so it was impossible for there to be any problems.
White Fengfeng, just wait until you arrive at my Cleansing Temple. Then everything will be beyond your control.
With a cold sneer, Zhao Jiutian stepped towards the field. But soon he came to a stop, his face full of awe, “Greetings, Revered Yuan!”
Yuan Tiangang had a light expression. “Zhao Jiutian, I know about your bet with White Fengfeng. If you can win, I will guarantee you endlessly vast prospects in the future.”
Zhao Jiutian was overjoyed. He expressed his thanks again and again.
On another side, Ming Siyuan appeared in front of the people from the Great Desolate Lake. His complexion was heavy, “Young master, you were far too careless! I have obtained news that Cleansing Temple has made arrangements to ensure that they obtain the treasure furnace’s remnant spirit no matter the cost. Zhao Jiutian’s bet was surely a trap! Although our Great Desolate Lake isn’t afraid of that, you should always consider every possibility.”
His eyes were cold and severe. He looked at Black Beibei, “You were right beside her, so how come you didn’t stop the miss?”
Black Beibei cried without tears. It wasn’t that he didn’t try to stop her, but when this young aunty suddenly decided to put on airs and act so haughty, who could still control her?
White Fengfeng glanced around. Because of Revered Ming, no one dared to look at them, so she suddenly revealed an incomparably excited expression. She quietly said, “Uncle Ming, don’t worry. Someone as smart as me can clearly see any traps, so how would I possibly jump inside. This time, Zhao Jiutian will be ruined by his own stupidity.”
Looking at White Fengfeng’s smug and gloating expression, Black Beibei frowned. In terms of alchemy skills, he was similar to Zhao Jiutian. But, the opponent had a high-grade pill furnace in his hands. Yesterday he had expended a great deal of effort yet had still fallen behind; the chances of him winning in the end were small. Could this young cousin of his be hiding some great hidden card that would reverse the competition at the end?
White Fengfeng curled her lips. She arrogantly said, “Stupid cousin, you still haven’t realized it? Zhao Jiutian said that he would take first place, and as long as he doesn’t take first place then I’ll have won!” A look of reverence lit up her face, “Did you forget that it's not just us participating in the competition this time? There is still that incomparably fierce and powerful Big Brother Baoyu! Hum hum, as long as my Big Brother Baoyu tries just a little bit, that Zhao Jiutian or Zhao whatever-tian will be finished for sure!”
Black Beibei was enlightened. Although he hadn’t come into contact with that mysterious Senior Baoyu too much, his admiration and awe towards him was like a flowing river that had no end. That bastard Zhao Jiutian was strong and the preparations Cleansing Temple made were surely considerable, but when placed together with Senior Baoyu, it wasn’t enough to be glanced at a second time.
Ming Siyuan’s complexion relaxed a great deal. His eyes flashed and he said, “Young master, if we win the bet, then you should ask for the same thing and bring Zhao Jiutian back to the Great Desolate Lake for half a year.”
White Fengfeng’s eyes popped open and she clapped her hands. “It’s Uncle Ming that is so wise and intelligent! I was originally going to make that disgusting Zhao Jiutian bow his head to the ground 100 times and then slap himself silly, but now it seems that would be too nice for him. I will bring him back home and then we’ll see if he won’t be a good little boy. I can already think of several hundred ways to play around with him!”
Ming Siyuan’s face stiffened.
And at this time, ‘Big Brother Baoyu’ was standing in front of the pill furnace. He didn’t know if it was an illusion or not, but the cracks that spread along the surface seemed to have diminished by the tiniest amount.
Of course, Qin Yu wasn’t in the mood to care too much about this. Right now he was thinking – just how would he overcome this hurdle? Yesterday Qin Yu had already tried to communicate with this damned pill furnace. He had asked kindly and politely that it not gobble up pills, and he had even tried making a deal of compensating it with higher quality pills.
He originally thought this would work, but he never imagined he would be refused. In particular, this damned pill furnace had an expression as if asking why it would want to negotiate with an idiot. It had left Qin Yu so enraged he nearly blew up his lungs.
But anger was just anger. If he wanted to obtain the treasure furnace’s remnant spirit, he would need to temporarily endure this.
Qin Yu clenched his teeth and coldly said, “I have nothing to say if you want to eat pills. But, since you chose me, you must have a reason for doing so. I believe that you don’t want to completely tear apart all pretenses of cordiality with me.” Qin Yu put forth his own conditions, “You can eat the pills, but out of each batch you must leave one for me so that I can complete the assessment. Otherwise we’ll go down together, and if you want to eat pills in the future you’ll have to look for someone else.”
The pill furnace didn’t respond. Qin Yu had no expression. There was a faint tension in the air.
After a long time, the pill furnace on the ground reluctantly opened the lid and closed it, issuing a light clanging sound.
This was considered an agreement.
Qin Yu cheered up but his complexion didn’t relax in the slightest. His expression was still cold and serious as he muttered, “Ignite.”
The furnace fire lit itself, soon reaching the required temperature. Qin Yu took out the first set of pill materials.
The refinement continued smoothly. Within the pill furnace, the medicinal efficacy of the refined materials began to rapidly fuse together.
After several breaths of time, a light medicinal fragrance spread outwards, signaling the completion of the refinement.
At this time, just as Qin Yu felt that his cold expression and decisive words had subdued the pill furnace, he heard the familiar sounds of chewing ring out. It was like some dark joke being played against him, making him feel embarrassed.
The lid of the furnace opened and closed. It was like a large mouth wildly laughing at him, mocking him.
Qin Yu’s field of vision flashed black. He sucked in a deep breath and clenched his teeth. “You are ruthless enough!”
He took out the second set of materials and continued refining.
Luckily, there didn’t seem to be a minimum standard required for the quality of the pills in the third stage. As long as one refined a fourth-grade pill then it was alright. Thus the Southshine Nation only gave three sets of materials for each pill. Even so, Qin Yu needed to conserve as much time as he could because according to this damned pill furnace’s actions so far, it wouldn’t give up anything until it had eaten all the materials.
In other words, within three days, Qin Yu needed to refine 30 sets of materials. If he was even a bit slower he wouldn’t have enough time.
As Qin Yu was exhausting himself to the bone, crazily refining pills, White Fengfeng was the first one to complete her refinement and then hand over her pills as well as the surplus materials. She took out her handphone, opened the official app, and saw that she really did have two extra points. She stuck out her tongue. She had only cared about speed so it was inevitable that the quality of the pills would be influenced. Out of the possible three points, she had only obtained two. Still, she couldn’t worry about this right now.
When the points appeared, the originally gray points column brightened up, turning into a colored number indicating she could use those points. She quickly exchanged those two points for a night tail flower.
After completing the exchange, she smiled. She continued refining the second fourth-grade pill.
Zhao Jiutian was the second to complete the refinement. According to the temporary ranking issued through the official app, he could see that White Fengfeng had refined the first pill a step ahead of him. Still, his expression was serene and there was a faint confident smirk hanging from his lips.
Although she was fast now, it was because she had refined a pill she was adept at. There were still nine other fourth-grade pills to refine. With White Fengfeng’s age, it was simply impossible for her to be sufficiently skilled in them all.
The time when the gap between them was pulled apart had yet to arrive!
Zhao Jiutian chose to exchange two points for a seven-colored spore.
Black Beibei was the third to complete the refinement. When he looked through the list of exchangeable materials, his eyes flashed and he chose one: seven aperture flower.
The cost was one point.
Following that was the third person, fourth person, fifth person…they all completed their refinements one after another.
After a while when all the proud elites of heavens had mostly finished refining their first pill, a large number of successes began to occur.
The stock of materials in the storehouse began to drop at an astonishing speed. The most sought-after materials, such as the 100 year spring water, five spirit fruit, south sea black bamboo, and so forth, quickly ran out. When the stock of those materials reached zero, their image on the official app turned gray, meaning that it had been wiped clean.
Qin Yu frenziedly refined three sets of materials and finally managed to harvest one single pill that had a massive amount of its medicinal efficacy sucked out and nearly fell below the level of being a fourth-grade pill. By this time, the material storehouse had nearly suffered two rounds of being cleaned out. Looking at the official app on his handphone and all those dark gray materials that couldn’t be exchanged for anymore, Qin Yu’s complexion paled. He clenched his jaws and carefully placed the pill in his storage ring, continuing to refine more.
The materials in the storehouse were already incomplete. Although he could still exchange for some usable materials, if he were to exchange for anything now, there was a 99% chance that in the end he would be unable to use those materials because others would be missing. Rather than uselessly wasting points, he might as well wait until the end for a few more chances.
Another reason was that handing over a pill every time would waste too much of Qin Yu’s time. To refine 30 sets of materials in three days was a considerable challenge for him.
One day passed. Then another day passed. In the blink of an eye, it was the last day.
The fastest one was Zhao Jiutian. As the first day ended, he completed the refinement of 10 different types of fourth-grade pills. His speed was the quickest amongst all the participants. Even so, he still wasn’t able to completely exchange for all the materials he needed for the fourth stage!
“Black Beibei!” Zhao Jiutian gnashed his teeth and his face darkened. He had to spend 10 points to exchange for a ghost visage lotus leaf. There were originally three of these items within the storehouse, but before he could exchange for them, they were actually all taken out by Black Beibei in a single breath. It was clear that Black Beibei already guessed that what he was going to refine was the Child and Mother Yinyang Pill.
This bastard, his eyesight was actually amazing. He had deliberately tried to mislead him in the exchanging process but hadn’t been able to do so.
But if Black Beibei did this, it meant that his own chances of winning were ruined before he entered the fourth stage. He was no longer a threat to him.
To exchange the 10 points he had obtained in the second stage for Black Beibei’s elimination wasn’t necessarily a loss.
Moreover, if Black Beibei could think of that, could Zhao Jiutian not have?
It was just that he never expected the Great Desolate Lake would place all their hopes on that girl White Fengfeng. He feared that his previous arrangements might not be able to thoroughly suppress her.
But none of that mattered. She was just a little girl that was still wet behind the ears. Who cared if she was the young master of the Great Desolate Lake? She couldn’t be placed on even grounds with him.
Zhao Jiutian smirked confidently. The title of competition champion was already his!
On the side of the Great Desolate Lake, White Fengfeng curled her lips. “Stupid cousin, why would you use your points to deal with that bastard Zhao Jiutian and not have others do it for you?”
Black Beibei forced a smile.
Ming Siyuan’s eyes flashed with appreciation. He said, “Young master, before you entered the competition field, Yun Yilan activated an array formation so that no unauthorized information could be transmitted. Black Beibei sacrificed his own hopes in this competition in order to stir up trouble with Zhao Jiutian and create a greater chance for you.”
White Fengfeng opened her mouth but didn’t speak further. She groaned and said, “I still need a last keylead vine, but they’re all gone. According to the extra exchange process of the competition, I will need six points.”
Ming Siyuan lightly said, “Exchange for it. Once the fourth stage begins, that will be where the competition truly starts – when the battle for the peak arrives. Young master, the treasure furnace’s incomplete spirit is extremely vital to the Great Desolate Lake. I hope you will give your best effort and not be careless.”
White Fengfeng nodded. Her pupils sparkled so brightly that they seemed to shine.
With Black Beibei’s understanding of her, this girl’s fighting spirit didn’t originate from the heavy pressure that was on her shoulders.
Rather, she was thinking that she would soon meet her Big Brother Baoyu!
And the facts proved that Black Beibei was correct. Only a small number of alchemists were able to smoothly enter the fourth stage.
And amongst that small number of alchemists, the ones ranked at the top were even fewer.
At this time, she certainly had to widen her eyes and find out where her Big Brother Baoyu had hidden!