Chapter 546 - Elder Hu
Gu gu gu gu!
Pure zhenqi seeped through Zhang Xuan's entire body along his meridians, through his acupoints, headed straight toward his dantian. Driving the Transcendent Mortal 2-dan Heaven's Path Divine Art, Zhang Xuan fell into a tranquil state, and his aura slowly hiked up.
Origin Energy realm primary stage!
Origin Energy realm intermediate stage!
If someone else were to see his pace of cultivation, they would immediately fall into a frenzy.
They had spent innumerable years of hard work just to raise their cultivation, but Zhang Xuan seemed to do the same as easily as eating and drinking. The concept of 'difficult' and 'bottleneck' didn't seem to apply to him at all.
In a luxurious mansion in the Myriad Kingdom City, a young man stood at the entrance of the courtyard, loitering around anxiously.
If Zhang Xuan was here, he would definitely be able to recognize the other party as the wealthy customer who often bought from him, Song Chao.
After loitering to and fro for several times, Song Chao couldn't help but turn to the guard at the entrance and ask, "When will elder come out of his seclusion?"
"I've no idea as well! After meeting with Song shi the previous time, elder immediately went into seclusion. Since then, he hasn't come out at all!" the guard replied.
After obtaining the grade-7 Metal Coffin, Song Chao immediately rushed to this courtyard to look for the elder, only to learn that the latter was currently in seclusion. Thus, he could only wait for the latter to return. Who knew that this wait would have taken him several days.
In any case, he did expect the elder to immerse himself in the research of the Soulless Metal Humanoid after obtaining it.
"Forget it, I'll return for now first!"
Since the other party was in seclusion, it wasn't good for him to simply barge in. Helpless, he decided to leave for now. However, before he barely took a few steps, 'jiya!', the door behind him opened.
Turning around, Song Chao saw an old man walking out of the room with a bright smile.
He hurried forward and bowed to the latter with clasped fists.
"Paying respects to Elder Hu!"
Stroking his beard, Elder Hu said with a smile, "You came at the right time! The Soulless Metal Humanoid you gave me is indeed not bad. After studying for numerous days, I've benefited greatly from it! If I can reach Consonant Spirit realm because of this, I'll make sure to reward you greatly!"
Transcendent Mortal 5-dan Consonant Spirit realm was a difficult hurdle of the Transcendent Mortal realm due to how intricately it was tied with the study of souls.
He had been trapped in Transcendent Mortal 4-dan pinnacle for a very long time already. He had tried many ways to achieve a breakthrough, but all of them turned out to be futile. Thus, when Song Chao delivered a Soulless Metal Humanoid to him just a period ago, he immediately studied it intensely as though it was his only lifeline.
Soulless Metal Humanoids were the personal bodyguards of the ancient soul oracles, and the secret behind souls could be uncovered from them. Even though he was still unable to comprehend how these Soulless Metal Humanoids could be formed, he was able to gain a deeper insight into the concept of souls. This would prove to be greatly beneficial to his future breakthrough into the Consonant Spirit realm.
"Elder, you're being too courteous. I'm glad that this artifact is useful to you..." Song Chao hurriedly nodded.
"Un!" Hearing the other party's humble words, Elder Hu nodded his head in satisfaction. "For you to pay me so many visits in the past few days, did something happen?"
Even though he was in seclusion, he still maintained some basic awareness of his surroundings.
Song Chao hurriedly nodded his head. "I met that person who sold me the Soulless Metal Humanoid just a few days ago. This time, he offered me the grade-7 Metal Coffin which is used to store Soulless Metal Humanoids. Thinking that it might be beneficial for elder's study... I bought it down!"
"Grade-7 Metal Coffin? A coffin used to house Soulless Metal Humanoid? Where is it? Show me!"
Elder Hu's eyes lit up and his breathing hastened.
As he was unable to achieve a breakthrough for such a long period of time, he chose to turn his attention to the study of souls. After years of research, he had learnt quite a bit about the subject. In his research, he had stumbled by the subject of soul oracles and thus, he understood the significance of this coffin.
If he had obtained these items earlier, he would have enjoyed a much greater improvement in the past few days. Even if he was still unable to reach Consonant Spirit realm, his soul would at least become much stronger than before.
Flicking his wrist, a massive coffin appeared before them.
It was the coffin that Zhang Xuan sold to him for one middle-tier spirit stone back at the herb garden.
"To think that it's a grade-7 Metal Coffin in perfect condition..." Seeing the inscriptions on the coffin, Elder Hu's eyes slowly grew brighter and brighter.
The soul oracles had entrusted blacksmiths to forge these coffins specially for their Soulless Metal Humanoid, and they had the effect of maintaining a Soulless Metal Humanoid in its peak condition for millenniums to come.
"Based on the words of the seller, this coffin was the one used to house the Soulless Metal Humanoid in elder's hands!" Song Chao continued.
Elder Hu nodded his head. After assessing the coffin carefully, he raised his head and said, "The person who sold those things to you... Where is he? Did you ask him where he obtained those items from?"
"That... I didn't!" Song Chao shook his head.
Under the other party's Impartation of Heaven's Will, he would lose all basic critical thinking ability. Every single meeting would only end with him forking out spirit stones. Under such circumstances, how was he supposed to ask anything at all?
"You didn't ask?" Elder Hu frowned.
Recalling the words that the young man said that day, Song Chao hurriedly replied, "Even though I didn't ask, I know that there are at least three more of such Soulless Metal Humanoids and grade-7 Metal Coffins in his possession. In fact... it seems like he even has the higher tier... Crimson Metal Coffin!"
"Do you mean that 'shattered by none the lock of Crimson Metal, undisturbed a rest for ten millenniums'... The coffin that even Transcendent Mortal 9-dan experts are unable break open, and is used to store a soul oracle's physical body?"
Elder Hu's breathing hastened as his eyes lit up.
A Grade-7 Metal Coffin was only a tool used to store Soulless Metal Humanoid. On the other hand, the Crimson Metal Coffin was something that was used to store the body of the soul oracle himself. Even though they were both coffins, the value of the latter was definitely much greater than the former!
That fellow actually had such good stuff?
"Yes!" Song Chao nodded his head.
"Great! Where is he? Is he selling that Crimson Metal Coffin? What does he want for it?" Elder Hu hurriedly asked.
"That... He intends to sell the Crimson Metal Coffin, just that... I didn't have sufficient money on me then, so I couldn't afford it. Putting everything aside, just this grade-7 Metal Coffin is already worth an entire middle-tier spirit stone..." Song Chao said.
"The grade-7 Metal Coffin is the work of a 4-star craftsman, and it has the effect of maintaining the physical condition of a Soulless Metal Humanoid for millenniums to come. Not only is it not expensive, it is in fact rather cheap! Not bad!"
Elder Hu nodded his head.
Given that it was the work of a 4-star craftsman, and considering the precious materials involved and the secret of soul oracles hidden within it, a middle-tier spirit stone was indeed relatively cheap in comparison.
This was an extremely fair price.
Hearing that he made a fair trade, Song Chao heaved a sigh of relief before asking, "So... does Elder Hu intend to buy it?"
"This is a rare opportunity, we have to obtain it. However... you should also know that even though I am an elder, my stipends are limited. Since a grade-7 Metal Coffin is worth a middle-tier spirit stones, nothing needs to be said about the Crimson Metal Coffin. Even I... am unable to fork out such a price!"
Even though Elder Hu was excited, he didn't allow it to get ahead of himself.
The annual stipends of an elder wasn't unlimited. The number of middle-tier spirit stones he had at hand was extremely limited.
The elder couldn't help but ask, "Right, have you tried buying it with Tutelage Jade Tokens?"
"Tutelage Jade Token? The person selling it is a master teacher himself, and his rank... can only be higher than mine. He won't want the jade tokens..."
Song Chao smiled bitterly.
Back then, when he intended to buy the Rousing From the Drunken Dreams on the auction, the other party refused to sell the work for anything other than spirit stones. After learning that Zhang shi was the seller, he immediately understood the reason.
The other party was a master teacher himself, and chances were that he had an even more formidable teacher above him. While Tutelage Jade Tokens were incomparably valuable to ordinary cultivators, to master teachers like them, their value was negligible.
It was just like how an owner of a gold mine wouldn't want to trade his possessions just to earn back gold.
"Master teacher?" Elder Hu was taken aback.
If the other party wasn't a master teacher, there was a variety of means they could use-guiding the other party or accepting the other party as his student. However, given that the other party was a master teacher like them, the things that they could do both on the surface and beneath the surface would become terribly limited.
The Master Teacher Pavilion was an organization to govern and protect master teachers. If they were to be caught doing harm on the other party for greed, their entire sect would suffer the wrath of the headquarters.
After a moment of hesitation, Elder Hu said, "Never mind, where is he now? I'll talk to him and ask him for the price of the Crimson Metal Coffin. This way, I can make preparations."
The safest and only viable method available was to buy it. It was fortunate that the other party had the intentions to sell it.
"He's currently in the guest residence of Myriad Kingdom Alliance's Alliance Head Residence!" Song Chao said.
While he had been visiting Elder Hu the past few days, he had been keeping a lookout for Zhang Xuan's whereabouts.
After leaving the herb garden, Zhang Xuan didn't hide his whereabouts. Given how even Su shi and the others were able to easily hear of the other party's whereabouts, it wasn't too difficult for him to do so as well.
"Alright then. Prepare the mounts, we'll head over!"
Elder Hu nodded his head.
Zhang Xuan finally came to a stop.
"There isn't sufficient spiritual energy..."
Zhang Xuan thought that a middle-tier spirit stone should be more than sufficient for him to reach Origin Energy realm pinnacle. But from the looks of it now, he was still underestimating his spiritual energy consumption rate.
Along with the rise in his cultivation, the spiritual energy he needed to make a breakthrough was increasing exponentially. A middle-tier spirit stone only could fuel him up to Origin Energy realm advanced stage. He was still quite a distance away from reaching pinnacle.
"I'll need at least two more middle-tier spirit stone before reaching pinnacle!"
Making a rough calculation, Zhang Xuan shook his head.
The spirit stone he had obtained from Hall Master Han was used up in the midst of cultivating his soul, and this spirit stone turned out to be insufficient to raise his zhenqi cultivation as well. Where was he supposed to find more middle-tier spirit stones?
He thought that he could be considered wealthy already. In the end, as soon as he started cultivating, he ended up being plagued by the issue of lack of spirit stones once again.
On top of that, the Soulrouse Grass also requires huge amount of energy to bloom as well. Based on Zhang Xuan's estimations, the energy required was much greater than the amount needed for him to reach Origin Energy realm pinnacle.
"I really have to find some way to earn some money..."
Rubbing his glabella, Zhang Xuan stood up.
Earning money... It was easier said than done. What was he supposed to do about it?
There were only a few middle-tier spirit stones in the Myriad Kingdom Alliance's Alliance Head Residence, needless to say, other powers with the Myriad Kingdom Alliance wouldn't have as much.
'Forget it, I should head to the Yin-Yang Lake first. Based on what Pavilion Master Kang said, the area is rich in spiritual energy, making it extremely apt for one's cultivation. Perhaps, I might be able to raise my cultivation even without using spirit stones...' Zhang Xuan thought.
Since it was a precious ground that enhanced one's rate of cultivation, perhaps he would be able to raise his cultivation even without using spirit stones.
"But before that, I should try to obtain the Transcendent Mortal 3-dan cultivation manual of Heaven's Path Divine Art first!"
Only with a cultivation technique could he raise his cultivation to higher heights. It would be a tragedy if the conditions there turned to be really beneficial to his cultivation, but he didn't have the required cultivation technique to raise his cultivation.
"There are many of such cultivation techniques in the Master Teacher Pavilion. As a 4-star master teacher, I have the qualifications to browse through them now!"
In terms of quantity of cultivation technique manuals and battle technique manuals, there was nowhere that could surpass the Master Teacher Pavilion's library.
In any case, Zhang Xuan was already a 4-star master teacher, so he had the qualifications to browse through all of the books. Since he had time now, he decided to head over to take a look.
Thinking so, he stood up and walked out.