There was no cultivator who would disagree that the heavenly flame tribulation was a perilous cultivation ordeal. Countless prodigies had lost their lives in the face of its devastating might.

Even in the Master Teacher Pavilion headquarters, where the top geniuses of the Master Teacher Continent were gathered, most 9-star master teachers would spend from several dozens to over a hundred years to prepare themselves before daring to face the scorching trial of the heavenly flame tribulation… 

It was not too long ago that Zhang Xuan was still at Saint 9-dan Macrocosm Ascendancy realm, but before they knew it, he had already summoned a heavenly flame tribulation. To make things worse, the heavenly flame tribulation he had summoned was no other than the most terrifying Empyrean Heavenly Flame… 

It was no wonder why everyone was pessimistic about his survival! Was it really possible for a human to survive something of this level?

But contrary to their expectations, not only did the young man emerge perfectly fine from the tribulation, they found that he was even making use of the heavenly flame to forge an artifact… 

Screw that!

Constipated looks appeared on the faces of the 9-star master teachers all around. They stared at one another with widened eyes, not knowing what they should make of the situation before them.

They had hypothesized many possibilities. Perhaps, the young man might have been burned to cinders, or maybe, he would be able to barely overcome it with grievous wounds… But the thought that he would make use of the heavenly flame to forge an artifact had never crossed their minds. Not even once!

Had the world lost its mind?

It was one thing for him to be able to control the lightning tribulation, but to actually be using the heavenly flame to forge an artifact… Hell, that was sheer extravagance!

Bro, does your family own the heavens or something?

The heavenly flame tribulation should have been the heavens' punishment against you! It's not a lighter for you to borrow a flame from!

While their minds were struggling to come to terms with the freakish happenings unfolding before their eyes, Zhang Xuan suddenly turned his gaze in their direction and asked, "Does any of you have any Hibernal Spirit Essence? Lend me some for use. I need it to quench my artifact…"

"Hibernal Spirit Essence?" The abrupt request left Ren Qingyuan's face twitching in frenzy. Nevertheless, he quickly nodded his head and replied, "I have some here!"

He whipped out a jade bottle with a flick of his wrist before tossing it up into the sky.

"Thanks!" Zhang Xuan grabbed the jade bottle and crushed it open.

Hula!

The Hibernal Spirit Essence shot out from the jade bottle and scattered all over the Golden Origin Cauldron.

Tzzzzzzz!

White smoke shrouded the Golden Origin Cauldron, placing a veil of mystery over it.


Maintaining the right proportion between the various metals used in the alloy was important, but quenching played an even more crucial role in determining the final quality of the artifact.

The Hibernal Spirit Essence was the ultimate treasure for quenching artifacts, so most 9-star blacksmiths would usually bring a bottle around with them. Considering how many 9-star master teachers there were around the area, it was almost certain that one of them would have it. 

"He is… forging a weapon?"

It didn't take too long for the white smoke to dissipate, revealing the true form of the mysterious artifact that was extravagantly forged using heavenly flames. At the same time, Zhang Xuan heaved a sigh of relief.

Ren Qingyuan and the other 9-star master teachers quickly turned their gazes over. What they saw left their lips twitching in horror, and they nearly keeled over.

They expected the weapon forged by Zhang Xuan using the heavenly flame to be mind-blowing! At the very least, it should be a magnificent Great Sage artifact on par with renowned legendary weapons in the world!

Can anyone tell us what the heck is that black lump over there?

It doesn't look like a cauldron, it doesn't look like a brick… Heck, it doesn't even qualify to be called a poop! After all the hammering using all those mystical forging techniques, this is all that you managed to smith?

A 9-star master teacher tilted his head uncertainly as he examined the mysterious artifact in the air, "It should be… a cauldron, right?"

"Doesn't look like it. To me, it seems more like a shoehorn!"

"I think you're right. A brick-like shoehorn…"

"..." Zhang Xuan

"Hahaha, I, the Golden Origin Cauldron, have finally been upgraded! Thank you, master!" As the quenching came to an end, an excited exclamation sounded in the air. But soon, a doubtful frown appeared on its distorted face as it asked, "Master, I don't feel right. Why does my head feel a little squarish? I seem to wobble quite a bit when I walk… Wait a minute, where are my legs?!"

"Your stubby legs have always been a major imperfection in your aesthetics, so I modified it a little for you," Zhang Xuan replied without the slightest hint of redness on his face.

"You altered it? Then… where is my furnace?" The Golden Origin Cauldron examined its body carefully for a very long while but was unable to find its furnace, so it couldn't help but ask.

"It made your figure a little bulky, so I filled it up with the Golden Origin Spirit Stone," Zhang Xuan replied with a reassuring voice.

"How do I forge artifacts or pills without a furnace?"

"Those are just minor issues. You need to let go of some stuff in order to make space for better upgrades… Don't you feel like your bottom has grown much bigger? I made it this way to complement your fighting style. With this, you can better crush your opponent with your bottom!" Zhang Xuan remarked earnestly. "Honestly speaking, I think you are much more dashing than before…"

"Am I? Haha, I guess I'm asking the obvious. Who else could be more good-looking than me, the Golden Origin Cauldron? I should be able to attract many female cauldrons in the future…" the Golden Origin Cauldron laughed heartily in satisfaction.

"..." Ren Qingyuan.

"..." The 9-star master teachers.

Did this pair of master and servant have some kind of misconception as to what was considered beautiful in this world?

Anyone with functioning eyes wouldn't be able to tell that it was a cauldron at all… Was it really fine for them to be so delusional?

Oh well! Geniuses tended to have their own quirks… Whatever that pleased them!

Paying no heed to the stupefied crowd below, Zhang Xuan examined the Golden Origin Cauldron before him carefully.

Due to him adding too much Golden Origin Spirit Stone, it looked just nothing more than a lumpy mess. However, its prowess wasn't to be underestimated despite its misshapen exterior.

It might have been unbelievable to anyone just looking at its exterior, but the current Golden Origin Cauldron was actually a true Great Sage artifact!

Its weight had reached a level so frightening that even a Sempiternal realm primary stage cultivator would be crushed into minced meat should the Golden Origin Cauldron's bottom fall on him.

"Alright, you should try and comprehend your strength and bring up your cultivation as soon as possible!" Zhang Xuan instructed.

Placing the satisfied Golden Origin Cauldron back into the Myriad Anthive Nest, he began to observe the changes with his body through his Spiritual Perception.

After undergoing the tempering of the Empyrean Heavenly Flame, not only had his cultivation advanced to Great Sage 1-dan Introspective Convalescence realm, all of the impurities in his body had been cleaned out too. Every single one of his cells was pulsating with vitality comparable to a newborn.

"This is… Introspective Convalescence realm consummation?" Zhang Xuan's eyes lit up in joy.

It would usually take many years for an Introspective Convalescence realm primary stage cultivator to refine his body and advance his cultivation. However, through the tempering of the heavenly flame, his cultivation actually surged all the way up to consummation stage!

Not only so, his physical body and zhenqi had also begun taking on a golden sheen.

From the looks of it, he only had to reinforce his cultivation for a bit before he was ready to push for a breakthrough to Aureate Body realm!

"With my current zhenqi cultivation and soul cultivation, along with the Golden Origin Cauldron and the Dragonbone Divine Spear, I should be able to put up a fight even against Sempiternal realm pinnacle experts!" Zhang Xuan clenched his fist in agitation.

Beyond Great Sage, there was a huge gap between each cultivation stage, thus making it extremely arduous and time-consuming to advance one's cultivation.

Yet, within a short span of a day, not only did he advance his Primordial Spirit to Aureate Body realm consummation, he had also managed to push his zhenqi cultivation up to Introspective Convalescence realm consummation… Even without relying on his overpowered artifacts, he was confident that he would be able to defeat the Xingmeng Sword Saints with ease!

It hadn't been an easy day for him, but his efforts had truly paid off!

Previously, he was completely helpless against Sempiternal realm cultivators without igniting Kong shi's blood droplet, so he had no choice but to flee from them. But with the current strength that he wielded, he could already put up a decent fight against them.

"However, I still need some time to get used to my powers before I can bring them out to their full potential!"

As he had advanced his zhenqi cultivation and soul cultivation separately, there were still some imperfections in wielding them simultaneously. However, that wasn't a big problem. With a few days, he should be able to reconcile the differences between the two and heighten his fighting prowess.

After confirming the changes in his body, Zhang Xuan finally descended back to the ground.

He had been in the Shrine of Kong shi when he summoned the heavenly flame tribulation, but he had practically swallowed the black flames that descended to earth whole. As such, the buildings in the surroundings didn't come to harm as a result of his cultivation ordeal.

Shortly after he landed on the ground, Luo Ruoxin walked out from the Shrine of Kong shi as well.

"Pavilion Master Ren, I am extremely grateful to you…" Zhang Xuan walked up to Ren Qingyuan and clasped his fist. 

He was in the midst of thanking Ren Qingyuan for granting him access to the Shrine of Kong shi when the world around him suddenly tremored intensely.

Following which, another radiant sun rose from the horizons of the sky, cloaking the world in its blinding light. 

Within the rising sun, one could vaguely see an enormous shrine embedded in its depths, resembling a resplendent sky palace.

"The Temple of Confucius…" Ren Qingyuan muttered beneath his breath with narrowed eyes.

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