Chapter 87 “Testing the Spirit Force” (Part One)
On the way to the testing hall, Ling Yue also encountered another two contestants from a competing team, mainly the two brothers from the Zhang family that took third place.
Young and honest, they are both locals of the city. And due to their father’s profession as an old metalsmith, both their experience in the forge was very rich despite their young age.
Finding their potential to be quite good, President Liao made an exception and decided to absorb them into the Alchemist Association. However, due to their lack of interaction with the spirit force, both brothers must first test their talent before gaining acceptance into the association.
“Greetings President Liao, and Master Ye.” When the Zhang brothers saw Ling Yue and the president coming over, these two didn’t wait and took the initiative to say hello in a deferential manner.
Unlike the many others today, they didn’t underestimate Ling Yue just because of her young age and sex.
It’s to be expected, Moon Iron wasn’t something some random person along the street can forge.
Earlier when Song Guang Zhi and the others were attacking Ling Yue with their words, only these two brothers didn’t join in and stood to the sideline. For that alone, their image to her was quite favorable.
“Every person who joins the Alchemist Association needs to carry out a preliminary test to measure their potentials. However, due to you already knowing how to control the spirit force, we can skip the first phase and head directly to the testing hall to see the level of your spirit.” President Liao already tried to explore Ling Yue’s spirit force to see how high her cultivation was, but when he attempted to probe her mind, he found that only a hazy mist awaited him inside.
Either this child had a special body or is exceptionally gifted.
The testing hall in the Alchemist Association was located at the highest level of the building and would only be opened to the public when a member needs to use it.
On entering the testing hall, the first thing Ling Yue saw were nine cauldrons placed in front of her.
These cauldrons are all forged with Yuan Iron, oddly though, their sizes varied greatly with none the same.
“In accordance with the rules of the Alchemist Association, once a member is capable of wielding the spirit force then they are a quasi-alchemist. The nine cauldrons in front of us is each marked with their respective weight, the more of them you can lift with your spirit force, the higher your level is.” Seeing the confused expression on Ling Yue’s face, President Liao were all smiles as he explained.
Approaching to take a look, Ling Yue found that on the center of each cauldron were the markings indicating their weight.
The first cauldron was about the size of a fist, and the marking indicated “One Jin”.
(Note: 1 jin = 0.9 pounds)
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Then moving over, the second one was a little bit bigger with an incense burning on top. The markings indicated “Ten Jin”.
By the time she got to the third cauldron, the size was already comparable to a watermelon. The marking on it this time though was quite heavy, “Fifty Jin”.
In turn, continuing along from the fourth cauldron to the ninth one, the weights were as following: one hundred Jin, two hundred fifty Jin, five hundred Jin, eight hundred Jin, one thousand Jin, and three thousand Jin.
(100, 250, 500, 800, 1000, 3000)
Seeing these gasp worthy numbers, Ling Yue felt dizzy just standing there because these weights seem to be even heavier than what a martialist can handle using their physical bodies.
“President Liao, you are an eight cauldron alchemist, so does that mean you can lift a cauldron weighing over a thousand Jin with just your spirit force?” She’s heard it before, some powerful martialists out there can single handedly lift things weighing over a thousand Jins.
And then looking back at the eight cauldron emblem tailored to the president’s chest, Ling Yue suddenly came down with a horrifying thought, It can’t be this simple looking grandpa here is also a muscle man that can lift a thousand pounds too now is he?
President Liao’s age was in fact not much different from Ling Yue’s own grandfather, the only difference was in their appearance. Unlike this old scrawny gramps here though, Ling Yue was more certain her grandfather had a higher possibility of raising these cauldrons.
As if able to hear Ling Yue’s murmuring thoughts, President Liao blinks and blinks: “You are mistaken my little friend. According to the rules of the association, in order to become an eight cauldron alchemist, one must first raise the first seven and then add in the weight of the final eighth cauldron together. So, in total one must lift approximately two thousand Jins using only their spirit force to become an eight cauldron alchemist.” President Liao smiles innocently.
Easier said than done. Just hearing the fact that she might one day need to lift over two thousand Jins was enough to make her legs cramp and her back numb.
Prior to coming here today, she originally thought she would at least take a three cauldron home easily with her current cultivation. But with another look now, she’s already getting the cold feet.
“My little friend, you must be thinking I’m kidding right? Hoho, it’s been a while since I practiced so I guess there’s no better chance than now.” As he says this, President Liao takes a step forward and focuses his gaze ahead.
Then in the next second, Ling Yue can feel a storm of energy sweeping out from the old man’s body to silently attack the cauldrons in front.
Like a magic show, the first cauldron suspended itself into the air, then the second, then the third and so on… By the time the president reached the sixth one, the weight was well over several hundreds of Jins.
Then on the seventh cauldron, the president finally had a change of complexion by turning red in his face. Even so, he successfully conquered this too, tallying his total weight up to a thousand Jins.
Finally, on the eighth one things got a little difficult. Losing some sweat through his forehead, the president took some more time than usual as he slowly raised the cauldron up.
All eight like a straight line suspended in mid-air, just the sight of this left Ling Yue stunned beyond words.
Under her surprised gaze, President Liao leaked a cheeky grin as he retracted his spirit force, sending the cauldrons plummeting back down to the floor.
Oddly though, when all eight cauldron touched down again, very little noise came out as a result. It’s as if they were made of cotton.
So that’s an eight cauldron alchemist’s strength, their reputation is well deserved.
Only now did Ling Yue accept defeat.
“My little friend, no need to feel too surprised, in fact, the Alchemist Association in Glass City is only one of the many insignificant branches in Da Xia. For the really powerful alchemists out there, forget about some cauldrons, they can even raise mountains and fill the sea if they wished it.” His words completely shocked Ling Yue’s heart.
So in the weak body of an alchemist could be a terrifying and powerful force waiting to be unleashed. Seems I’ve misjudged the spirit force so far.
“President Liao, so what is there above a nine cauldron alchemist? Also, between a first class martialist of Da Xia, which would be more powerful?” Listening to the president’s explanation, Ling Yue can truly say her eyes were opened to a whole new world today.
“Above a nine cauldron is what we would call a senior alchemist, but those are all immortal characters. Aside from the kings and leaders of those powerful sects out there, very few would come into contact with them. As to which is more power between those standing at the pinnacle, I honestly can’t say.”
(senior alchemist sounds so lame but I honestly can’t think of a proper English word that matches the Chinese honorific word)
Now that they are talking about a senior alchemist, Ling Yue inherently thought of Mr. Red Mist. After all, how can someone create a magical place like the Red Mist Sky unless one was also a senior alchemist?
Sadly, Mr. Red Mist and Lady Jade Poison Hand are both missing, their whereabouts unknown. Whether or not they are still alive was up for debate.
“My little friend, are you ready to start the test?” President Liao was also quite curious as to what extent the girl’s spirit force was at.
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