Translated By – DemonKiller
Edited By – Livewidsmile
Proofread By – DemonKiller
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Chapter 0977: The most difficult Dao Transformation Dao Pill to refine
“Did Senior Apprentice Sister Yan Ji fully recover?” Xin Xiu looked at Yan Ji, who walked out with Ning Cheng with a surprised and joyful tone.
Even Wu Qihong, who wasn’t good with words, congratulated Ning Cheng. He and Xin Xiu clearly understood that Ning Cheng cared a lot about Yan Ji.
“Many thanks, Senior Apprentice Sister Xin Xiu, Senior Apprentice Brother Wu.” Ning Cheng had already informed her about Xin Xiu and Wu Qihong, so she hurriedly came forward to greet them.
Ning Cheng, however, shook his head. “Junior Apprentice Sister Ji has only woken up; her foundation still remains shattered and can’t cultivate yet. I have to find the Exquisite Star Golden Concealed Leaf to help her restore her foundation.”
“Exquisite Star Golden Hidden Leaf!?” Wu Qihong repeated the name in shock. He and Xin Xiu were alchemists, so they naturally knew about the item in question and its rarity.
If someone told them to go find it, they could easily spend their entire life searching for it but not find even the tiniest clue about it. Moreover, even knowing about Ning Cheng’s abilities and connections, they didn’t think Ning Cheng could find the leaf.
Ning Cheng understood their thoughts and could only sigh. “No matter what, I have to find that leaf.”
Fortunately, Yan Ji’s spiritual soul hadn’t suffered any apparent damage. Barring the issue of not cultivating, there wasn’t anything wrong with her. Therefore, when she heard Ning Cheng’s words, she spoke up with a soft voice, “Even if it’s not found, it’s not a big deal. I’m already content.”
“Big Brother Ning, a man called Percy came for a visit a few days ago. I requested him to wait till you came out.” Xin Xiu immediately recalled something and reported it to Ning Cheng.
“Percy?” Ning Cheng immediately recalled the bearded and rough-looking fellow, ranked second among the Grand Essence 12 Sacred Children. From what Jian Sanshan said, Percy came from the mysterious Void Star Sect. This fellow had approached him several times and had even helped him at the City Lord’s mansion.
Ning Cheng’s spiritual consciousness immediately swept out and found Percy still waiting patiently outside his suit. He quickly stepped forward, opened the restrictions, and spoke up with cupped fists, “Dao Friend Percy, please come inside. I had some urgent business to attend to and ended up making you wait unnecessarily. I hope you can forgive me.”
Percy laughed and returned the greetings with cupped fists. “Pill Sage Ning. It’s already a great joy for me that you took the time to meet me.”
Ning Cheng smiled and invited Percy into the living room and sat down. It wasn’t unusual for Percy to know that he was a pill sage. But then again, since Percy knew about his identity as a pill sage, it also meant that he wasn’t the only one who knew about it.
He poured Percy a cup of spiritual tea and asked, “Fellow Daoist Percy has tried approaching me several times. I assume you came looking for me for something?”
Percy gave an awkward nod before proceeding in a gruff voice. “That is true; I wanted to ask Dao Friend Ning’s help in refining a batch of Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pills.”
Ning Cheng’s hand pouring the spiritual tea paused. After a moment, Ning Cheng asked once again to confirm he had heard it right. “You want me to refine the Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pill?”
Ning Cheng had read about this particular pill and knew that it was the most difficult to refine Dao Transformation Dao Pill. Even an accomplished Dao Transformation Pill Sage would have an abysmal success rate in refining it.
Putting aside the success rate in refining this pill, this pill only had one function. That is, to detoxify a particular poison, the Ripple Bone Poison. One of the ten most potent poisons existing in the world and ranked tenth among them. Once struck by this poison, that person’s bones would slowly corrode into slag in a ripple-like pattern. The ripple-like patterns also served as a cage that imprisoned and tortured the essence spirit of that person, making it so that it could not leave the physical body.
Some holy emperors with extremely powerful cultivation could forcibly abandon their physical bodies once struck by the poison. But once the essence spirit found a new body or tried to rebuild one, the poison would continue to corrode the bones of the new body like maggots attached to dead flesh. There simply was no escape from this poison once struck as it affected the essence spirit directly. There simply was no way to resolve it even in the present day.
However, someone in the relatively recent past had found a method that could potentially help remove this poison after researching the historical texts about this poison. Then, that person distilled that method into a medicinal pill, the Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pill, a Dao Transformation Dao Pill with three primary spirit herbs.
One was a dao fruit called Golden Cicada Heart Fruit, and the other two were the Cloudy Sky Zoysia and the Green Frost Underworld Branch. Both were precious spirit grasses that contained the laws of heaven and earth.
But more importantly, all three of the primary ingredients required to refine a single furnace of Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pill were beyond priceless. Plus, it was almost impossible to collect these ingredients as they had already gone extinct.
Disregarding the difficulty in finding the ingredients for the pill, even the refinement process wasn’t on the same level as other dao pills of the same grade. Even if one had luck on their side and managed to gather the required ingredients, almost no one would be able to refine this pill. Let alone Dao Transformation Pill Sages, even Dao Essence Pill Sages might not be able to refine it.
It was mainly because the three primary ingredients contained conflicting laws of heaven and earth. It made it almost impossible to fuse their medicinal essences, let alone condense them into pills. This fact alone proved how difficult it was to turn the ingredients into a dao pill.
“That’s right, we have already collected the materials for one batch. We want to ask Pill Sage Ning to use the materials and help us refine a batch of Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pills.” Percy spoke up in a highly cautious tone; the man even stood up and looked around before replying.
Ning Cheng shook his head, “I’m sorry. I’m afraid my alchemy skills are still lacking to refine a batch of Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pills. The Alchemy Discourse is about to start soon. When that time comes, the strongest alchemists from all over the Grand Essence Realm will gather. Dao Friend Percy would have a better chance in searching for a suitable alchemist at the discourse rather than come here looking for a half-decent alchemist like me.”
Jokes aside, just how precious were the ingredients for a single furnace of Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pills? Ning Cheng didn’t hesitate to refuse it. If he failed in refining it, he wouldn’t be able to afford to pay it back, not even with the Pill Union’s backing. He might have considered it if Percy said they had enough ingredients for a few batches. But with only enough for a single furnace, he had no choice but to refuse it right away.
After hearing Ning Cheng’s words, Percy sighed and bowed to Ning Cheng. “Pill Sage Ning, I know that if there is someone in the Grand Essence Realm who can refine the Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pill, it’s only you, Pill Sage Ning.”
Ning Cheng finally showed a frown. “Fellow Daoist Percy, I’m afraid you misunderstood something. Even if we make an assumption that I refined the Heavenly Bodhisattva Pill and the Nine-aperture Heart Pill in the Illusionary Fruit Orchard, it wouldn’t be possible for me to refine something as difficult and as complex as the Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pill.”
Percy spoke up with an even more earnest tone. “I know that Pill Sage Ning is at least a Dao Transformation Pill Sage. After all, there aren’t many Dao Transformation Pill Sages who can refine top-grade Amethyst Heaven Pills in the Grand Essence Realm. Even Pill Union’s Union Master, Dao Essence Pill Sage Sichen Qiutian is only at this level, I’m afraid.”
“As long as Pill Sage Ning is willing to take action, even if it fails in the end, I can promise that my Void Star Sect will not hold Pill Sage Ning responsible for the loss in any way. If the refinement succeeds, we will only need half of the Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pills. The other half will be given to Pill Sage Ning as a reward. Besides that, Pill Sage Ning can choose anything from my Void Star Sect; everything in the sect will be at your disposal. We also promise that all of Pill Sage Ning’s enemies in the Grand Essence Realm will be treated as my Void Star Sect’s personal and mortal enemies.”
Ning Cheng felt quite moved when he heard about the offer. He had never been to a ‘mysterious sect’. But he understood that in the Grand Essence Realm, every mysterious sect was no weaker than the ten great forces. For such a sect to let him pick anything at will, it showed the importance of the person afflicted by the Ripple Bone Poison to the Void Star Sect.
Moreover, Ning Cheng had a good idea of the people he had offended. Barbarian Dragon Clan’s Dragon Emperor Man Huishan, River Luo Sacred Sect’s Tong Mengzi, and Heaven Essence Sacred City’s City Lord Le. At the very least, these three wanted to get rid of him actively. Yet, Void Star Sect still promised to protect and go against these powerful forces. However, it also meant that the situation with Void Star Sect’s poisoned person wasn’t a simple one at all.
Ning Cheng took in a deep breath and went over the offer once again in his head but ultimately shook his head in nonacceptance. “I’m sorry, my strength is limited. Even if I want to help you, I’m unable to refine such a pill.”
He’d be lying if he didn’t covet such a favour, but he had to think about the worst-case scenario. The Void Star Sect would definitely go crazy if he failed in refining such an essential and priceless pill. He couldn’t afford to add Void Star Sect to the list with his current strength.
Don’t look at the number of people he had offended till now. Ning Cheng knew that they wouldn’t create any problems, at least not without creating a justifiable cause. Man Huishan wouldn’t dare to make any moves against him because of the oath, and Tong Mengzi wouldn’t dare to come after him openly either. As for the deep-rooted Le Jiesheng, he was even less likely to move against him in the open. He also has Sheng Houtian as his ‘brother’, making his situation in the Heaven Essence Sacred City stable as a mountain.
Plus, even someone like Man Huishan couldn’t catch him if he decided to leave Heaven Essence Sacred City. As such, it would be even more impossible for Tong Mengzi.
He had thought over this matter for a long time, but it would immediately change the narrative once he offended the Void Star Sect. The current balance would immediately break, and at that time, pretty much every force would come after his life. After all, those he offended weren’t in any life-or-death situation and were only after his secrets. The same couldn’t be said for the person in the Void Star Sect. The success or failure in refining the pill could mean the life and death of that person from the Void Star Sect.
“Since that’s the case, I won’t bother Brother Ning anymore.” A hint of disappointment flashed across Percy’s eyes, and he turned dejected. He understood Ning Cheng’s dilemma, but he also understood that he couldn’t do anything if Ning Cheng wasn’t willing to refine the pill.
Ning Cheng also felt a little apologetic. He honestly couldn’t guarantee a successful refinement of Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pill. If he could, he would have definitely agreed to Percy’s proposal without any hesitation.
Percy walked to the door but suddenly turned back and said, “I almost forgot. If you want the Exquisite Star Golden Concealed Leaf, you should head to the Grand Essence Ruin’s Burial Shadow Blue Sands. One of the elders from my Void Star Sect had reported seeing the Exquisite Star Golden Concealed Leaf while searching for the Green Frost Underworld Branch. Unfortunately, the elder couldn’t recall the exact location due to circumstances; otherwise, I would have engraved it on a jade slip for you……”
“Don’t ever go there.” Yan Ji suddenly interrupted Percy’s words in panic. She survived in the Grand Essence Ruins for many years and was just too familiar with the Burial Shadow Blue Sands. Dao Transformation Holy Emperor was the lowest cultivation required to enter the Burial Shadow Blue Sands. But even among them, there were very, very few who could come out alive. Even if it meant death for her, she didn’t want Ning Cheng to enter the Grand Essence Ruins’ Burial Shadow Blue Sands.
“Why didn’t you use that to trade with me? As long as you told me that you knew where the Exquisite Star Golden Concealed Leaf might exist, I might have agreed to help you with the request right away.” Ning Cheng looked at Percy and asked calmly.
Percy showed a calm smile. “Pill Sage Ning, I admired your persona very much at the City Lord’s mansion. Whether you consider me a friend or not, I, Percy, consider you as a friend worth making. This Percy never ‘trades’ with my friends, nor do things that constitute blackmail to my friends.”
The way Percy said it revealed a powerful pride.
Ning Cheng had dealt with the Grand Essence’s 12 Sacred Children too many times and knew that each and every one of them was very proud. However, unlike others, Ning Cheng kinda appreciated Percy’s pride. It was a type of pride that came from one’s bones, not the arrogant pride for the sake of face and fame.
Ning Cheng took a few steps forward and patted Percy on the shoulder. “Percy, thank you for treating me as a friend. Your furnace of Renewing Heaven Ripple Bone Pills, I will refine it.”
“Pill Sage Ning…..” Percy looked at Ning Cheng with some disbelief. How could he not feel baffled by it? No one could have refused the conditions he had stated before. Yet, Ning Cheng had decidedly rejected helping his Void Star Sect for the refinement. But now, when he told Ning Cheng about a place that ‘might’ have the Exquisite Star Golden Concealed Leaf, Ning Cheng agreed almost immediately.
He quickly reacted and bowed deeply to Ning Cheng before making a vow. “Many thanks, Pill Sage Ning. Even if you fail in the refinement, this Percy vows to not let you suffer any harm even if I have to die for it.”
Ning Cheng smiled, “I trust you; that’s why I agreed to help you refine your pills. From now on, don’t call me Pill Sage Ning. Just call me by my name directly, Ning Cheng. You’re my friend.”
Percy laughed, “Everyone who knows me calls me ‘Western Bandit’. Brother Ning should also call me Western Bandit from now on.”
Ning Cheng looked at the bearded Percy and couldn’t help but muse to himself, “The nickname seems quite appropriate.”
 ‘Spirit herb’ is a collective term I decided to use for ‘dao fruits and spirit grasses.
 The term ‘mysterious sect’ is a separate classification of sects, most likely on a higher level than the ten major forces.
 The nickname here is ‘西胡子’, which literally translate to ‘West Beard’. But ‘胡子’ is also a colloquial slang for ‘Bandit’. Since ‘Percy’ is already a western name, I translated the nickname as ‘Western Bandit’.