Chapter 178: Conflicting properties

Translator: StarveCleric Editor: GaiaNove

Noticing his appearance, Guild Leader Ouyang and the others were tempted to laugh, but they did not dare to.

Hong Yun is an apothecary of far higher standing than them. Even Emperor Shen Zhui would have to treat him with the utmost respect, not daring to slight him in the least.

Yet, at this very moment, he looks like charcoal and his hair is standing on ends. If not for the movements in his eyes, one wouldn’t doubt that this is a corpse.

However, they understood that it isn't an appropriate moment to be laughing. All of their gazes had converged onto Zhang Xuan.

They were curious to listen to what he has to say.

Offering a pointer to a 2-star apothecary... This is something unimaginable to them.

They wanted to see if the young man who had awed them in the Pill Debate can shine once more.

However, the young man simply turned to look at Apothecary Hong Yun with a bizarre expression and inquired, "Are you sure that you are a 2-star apothecary?"

"What do you mean?" Apothecary Hong Yun flung his robe angrily.

"What is the property of Blue Floral Grass?" Ignoring the other party's displeasure, Zhang Xuan asked.

"Blue Floral Grass has a purplish color and is a warm herb." Apothecary Hong Yun replied.

"What about Golden Dime Flower?"

"Golden Dime Flower consists of two colors, golden and silver. As such, some people term it as Silver-leaf Golden Flower. It is a herb with mediating property."

"Even though these two herbs possess mild properties, when used together, an extremely violent reaction results." Zhang Xuan said.

"I know that. However, the Vitality Restoration Pill recipe has been passed down for a long time. If the reaction between the two can result in the explosion of the cauldron, then it would have happened to other people as well." Apothecary Hong Yun shook his head. "Besides, there isn't any mistake in the sequence in which I place the medicinal herbs. In fact, I even added a Purple Aroma Grass between the two to mediate between their properties. In terms of sequence and timing, there are no errors at all!"

He had consulted another expert on the forging process of the Vitality Restoration Pill. Every single medicinal herb and movements were identical to the other party, yet the result was entirely different. This was what left him baffled.

The other party had also said that the fusing of the two medicinal herbs would result in a violent reaction, which he also knew and had taken preventive measures. It is impossible for the explosion of the cauldron to be due to this.

"I didn't say that your sequence is incorrect or that there's a problem with the two medicinal herbs!" Zhang Xuan said calmly.

"What do you mean?"

Apothecary Hong Yun, as well as the other spectators, felt perplexed.

If that isn't the problem, that what could be it?

Otherwise, why would his cauldron explode when there are no errors?

Besides... If there's nothing wrong with the two herbs, why did you even ask about them?

Ignoring the bizarre looks everyone shot at him, Zhang Xuan placed his hands behind his back and walked toward the exploded cauldron. On the ground nearby, a stalk of Blue Floral Grass and Golden Dime Flower each could be seen.

"The Blue Floral Grass and Golden Dime Flower react to result in a violent explosion when they are mixed together... It's true that adding a Purple Aroma Grass can help to solve the problem, but... while other people may be able to do it, but you can't!"

Zhang Xuan smiled lightly.

"I can't? Is there something special about me?" Apothecary Hong Yun frowned.

I am a distinguished 2-star apothecary, and furthermore, I am one of the better-skilled ones in the tier. So why am I the only exception?

"That's right, there's something special about you. If I'm not wrong, you have never eaten any medicine which uses Purple Aroma Grass as the main ingredient!" Zhang Xuan turned to look at him.

"Er... I am allergic to Purple Aroma Grass and so, I cannot consume it..."

Apothecary Hong Yun nodded his head.

"Actually, it's not due to an allergy. Rather, the attribute of your zhenqi is incompatible with it..." Zhang Xuan placed his hands behind his back and continued, "Because you cultivate using the Vast Flame Formula, your zhenqi inherently carries the property of fire. On the other hand, the Purple Aroma Grass grows in the water, giving it the property of water. Hence, your zhenqi overwhelms the water property of the Purple Aroma Grass, causing it to lose its effectiveness. As such, while it is effective for others to utilize the Purple Aroma Grass as a mediating factor in forging of the Vitality Restoration Pill, it does not work for you. Therefore, when the other two herbs come into direct contact, a violent reaction results and causes the cauldron to explode!"

"You... How did you know that I cultivate the Vast Flame Formula?"

Apothecary Hong Yun's face turned pale.

The Vast Flame Formula is a family hereditament cultivation technique handed down through his clan. He had practiced it from young, and it has been several decades since. As a result, his zhenqi does indeed carry the fire attribute. However, this was a personal secret and he had never told any outsider. In fact, not even his good friends know of it. How is this fellow able to tell so easily?

"It doesn't matter how I know it. If you don't believe me, you can try adding Blue Floral Grass and Golden Dime Flower to the Purple Aroma Grass which you have refined. If it doesn't explode, that would mean that my conjecture is wrong." Zhang Xuan didn't bother explaining.

Just by having the other party display his pill forging technique, a book was compiled by the Library of Heaven's Path. Not mentioning the name of the cultivation technique, if he really wished to, Zhang Xuan could have clearly mentioned every single flaw on that cultivation technique. It isn’t a big deal to him.

Apothecary Hong Yun hesitated for a moment but eventually decided to give it a try. Thus, he took out a Blue Floral Grass, Golden Dime Flower, and Purple Aroma Grass and refined them into medicinal essences. After which, he mixed the three of them together.


Exactly as what the other party said, the concoction exploded immediately.


Apothecary Hong Yun's body trembled.

He had already studied the Vitality Restoration Pill for numerous years, but he had never succeeded in forging it. He had always thought that the problem lied with his movements and the sequence which he added in medicinal herbs. He never once imagined that it would actually be his zhenqi which had rendered the Purple Aroma Grass's mediating property ineffective.

If he hadn't heard himself, he would have never believed it.

"Is there a solution to the problem?"

Recovering from his shock, Apothecary Hong Yun turned his sight to the young man.

At this moment, he is already completely impressed with the other party.

Initially, he had come with the intention to strip Zhang Xuan's apothecary qualifications. However, that thought had vanished completely from his mind.

To be able to tell his cultivation technique and pinpoint the clash in medicinal herbs just by watching him forge the pill once... Even though he has no idea of the other party's pill forging technique, just his discerning ability itself is more than sufficient to qualify him as a 2-star apothecary.

"To think that a 2-star apothecary can't solve such a simple problem by himself?" Displeasure appeared on Zhang Xuan's face.

Even though the library points out the flaws of a problem, it doesn’t give him a direct solution. Of course, he can't mention this out loud... What if the other party claims that he did not solve the problem satisfactorily and refuse to pay up?

The reason why he took the effort to answer the other party's question was money. Otherwise, why would he waste his precious sleeping time?

"Thank you for your guidance..."

Upon hearing the other party's criticism, Apothecary Hong Yun's face flushed.

The other party's words made sense. As a 2-star apothecary, it was already absurd for him to pose such a question to a 1-star apothecary. To ask for the solution when the other party had already directed him to the core of the problem… what an embarrassment.

The Purple Aroma Grass was only a mediating factor. As long as he can find a mediating herb that doesn’t clash with his zhenqi, the problem should be solved.


The Apothecary Hong Yun, who was incomparably arrogant and authoritative when he arrived, now looks like an elementary schooler, not daring to refute the criticisms. Guild Leader Ouyang and the rest tucked at their hair, wanting to knock their head against the wall.

It was clear that Zhang Xuan's explanation was spot-on. Otherwise, it would be impossible for the other party to submit to him like that.

For a newly appointed 1-star apothecary to lecture a 2-star apothecary to the point that he does not dare to refute his words at all...

The crowd swallowed a mouthful of saliva subconsciously.

"Guild Leader Ouyang, you should have heard Apothecary Hong Yun's words. Return that money, along with the one million deposit that I paid in advance..."

Ignoring everyone's shock, Zhang Xuan walked straight up to Guild Leader Ouyang, stretched out his hand, and grabbed the money bills which he handed to him previously.


Everyone was speechless.

Since you are such an incredible apothecary, you should be able to earn that bit of money just by selling a few pills. Do you have to act in such a manner just because of this bit of money?

Ignoring their bizarre gazes, Zhang Xuan kept the money and nodded his head in satisfaction.

The reason why he went about looking for money, even disguising as a master teacher to guide others, was to pay for these items... Yet... In the end, when the items arrived, he didn't even have to spend a single gold coin...

If he knew it would end up like this, he wouldn't have gone through so much effort to disguise himself as a master teacher. In the end, look at how exhausted he became doing so...

Zhang Xuan felt dismal.

Apothecary Hong Yun was done examining Zhang Xuan. Knowing that this young man holds true capabilities, he longer dared to hold him back.

Leaving the Apothecary Guild, Zhang Xuan headed to the academy.


Hearing that Master Teacher 'Yang Xuan' had appeared, Lu Xun and Wang Chao could no longer remain seated. After composing their name scrolls, they rushed out of the academy in a hurry. At the entrance, they happened to see a listless young man walking in.

That fellow had bloodshot eyes and his hair was a mess. With a single look, it was clear that he hadn't slept for several days.

"Lu Xun, it's Zhang Xuan..." Wang Chao said with a restrained voice.

"Him?" Lu Xun glanced at the listless young man and shook his head. Contempt appeared in his gaze. "To think that a teacher of the academy would be so ignorant of etiquette and walk around in such a ragged state. It truly is a wonder to me why the academy would recruit such a person in the first place!"

"I think that this fellow must have been feeling stressed over your challenge, and had spent the last few days without sleep trying to think of a countermeasure, thus reducing himself to such a state..."

Wang Chao chuckled.

Who is Lu Xun laoshi?

The most famous star teacher in Hongtian Academy! There is a long queue of students who desire to come under his tutelage.

Even an elder would find himself sweating profusely if challenged by him. The young teacher who had just joined last year is surely scared out of his wits by now.

Otherwise, why would he be in such a state?

"Thinking of a countermeasure?" Lu Xun laoshi shook his head. Self-confidence radiated from his gaze. "To want to surpass me in the field of teaching in the Hongtian Academy... Dream on!"

"Indeed. Honestly speaking, he can only blame himself for his ill luck. He just has to pop up when you require an opponent to rise up and attract the attention of the master teacher. He truly deserves it..." Wang Chao chuckled.

Even though Emperor Shen Zhui had invited Liu shi and the others with secrecy, announcing to others that he was going on a hunt, there were actually quite a few well-informed people who already knew the truth.

In order to attract the attention of the master teachers to become their apprentice, Lu Xun was already prepared to look for someone to serve as his stepping stone. Even if Wang Tao and Wang Yan had not withdrawn from his tutelage, he would have invented another reason. It just happened that Zhang Xuan came into his path voluntarily, so naturally, Lu Xun chose to make use of him.

"Let's go! We have to hurry to Yang shi's mansion now. Otherwise, who knows how long we will have to queue."

Lu Xun nodded his head.

To him, Zhang Xuan is merely a small stepping stone for him to become a master teacher, a meaningless itch on his back. He holds no resentment or anger toward him at all.

"Indeed, Yang shi should be our goal. This Zhang Xuan is only an insignificant figure in the academy..."

Wang Chao nodded his head. No longer bothering with Zhang Xuan, the two of them walked past Zhang Xuan arrogantly, not even giving him a proper look in the eyes!


Seeing two teachers walking past him with their heads held high and haughtily, as though enlightened experts unmoved by material desires, Zhang Xuan was puzzled.

Who are these two... fools?

Even though he had accepted the Teacher Evaluation duel with Lu Xun laoshi, he had never met the other party. Thus, he didn't recognize him at all.

There are several hundred teachers in Hongtian Academy. Zhang Xuan arrived just last year, and he hadn’t formed good interpersonal relationships. Given how poor he was faring then, he didn't have the leisure to be concerned about other teachers, so it was natural for him to not recognize the academy’s celebrity.



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