Another more popular method was to use something called “spirit stones” as a form of currency in business transactions among cultivators to buy and sell goods.
As the name implies, a “spirit stone” is a type of stone that was full of the world’s Spiritual Qi. The amount of Spiritual Qi accumulated in the spirit stone is a huge supplement for cultivators.
If a cultivator absorbed the Spiritual Qi within the spirit stone during meditation as he cultivated, his speed of cultivation would reach astonishing rates. After all, the scattered Spiritual Qi that a cultivator would have to absorb and refine by himself was quite different from having pure, refined Spiritual Qi next to him that he could absorb and refine as he wished.
However, this was not a spirit stone’s greatest effect. The most important usage of the spirit stone was for magic techniques and to set up a formation spell.
Whether or not a high-grade formation spell succeeded and was effective, it all depended upon the effectiveness of the spirit stones used. A good spirit stone would not only guarantee the success of the formation spell, it would also increase the power dramatically.
However, the amount of spirit stones used for magic techniques was far above the utility of formation spells. This was because a cultivator had to rely on his own magic power cultivation to determine the grade and effectiveness of the magic technique he wanted to execute. Since it was almost impossible to rely on oneself and use a high-grade magic technique, spirit stones became the best magic power amplification object.
If a cultivator cast a very powerful magic spell while holding a spirit stone in his hand, the Spiritual Qi within the spirit stone would continuously replenish the cultivator’s loss of magic power during magic casting. In this manner, it was able to support magic techniques one would originally be unable to use.
Therefore, the spirit stones had become the best option for cultivators to gain the upper hand and win from a position of weakness. They were also the best strength recovery tonic after magic power was greatly depleted, and would increase one’s chances of survival during a fight by leaps and bounds.
Spirit stones have so many uses and amazing effects, so naturally, the value for a spirit stone rose as well.
But because of the vast consumption of the spirit stones, along with the excessive exploitation and continuous decline of their ore veins, spirit stones had gradually became a precious luxury good in the present day of the cultivating world. In short, it became a cultivator’s optimal safeguard for business transactions and the only circulating monetary currency. Furthermore, there was even a collaborative decision on the detailed differentiation on a spirit stone’s specifications and grade.
Spirit stones were grade into four grades according to the amount of spirit power they contained. The four grades comprised of low-grade spirit stone, mid-grade spirit stone, high-grade spirit stone and ultra-grade spirit stone. In addition, according to the different attribute of spirit power spirit stones stored, they could also be categorised into the five elements: Metal spirit stone, Wood spirit stone, Water spirit stone, Earth spirit stone, and Fire spirit stone. Moreover, there are also rarely seen spirit stone attributes such as Wind (?) spirit stone and Thunder spirit stone. But those spirit stones were very rare.
These kind of extremely precious items like spirit stones, Han Li don’t even possess a single piece of it.
He admitted that he did not have any sort of goods on him to use for an exchange. Hence from the start, he had intentions to widen his horizon, so he looked around without any restraint and continued his journey.
Even though Han Li’s appearance was indifferent and calm, the items at the vendors’ stalls made his heart stir and greatly envious.
Ignoring the rest of the items, even the plain white talisman paper that every vending stall offered was subject to his attention. Despite the fact that this object was very common, it was currently what Han Li needed the most.
Even though Han Li still did not know the meaning of the level or grade of this talisman paper and what specific difference it had, he knew that with his present power, the elementary low-grade talisman paper was definitely enough for him to fully execute the Soul-Lock Talisman.
Therefore, if he could acquire a few talisman papers, he could immediately use one more type of magic spell, instantly increasing his strength quite a bit.
Of course other than the talisman paper, there was a rich variety of spirit talisman such as “Thunder Fire Talisman”, “Fire Dragon Talisman”, and the “Huge Force Talisman”. All of these caused Han Li to be rather tempted.
While Han Li was still standing in front of an unassuming vendor’s stall, he saw a spirit talisman that was exactly the same as the Daoist paper talisman that released a golden barrier, which he owned. Beside it, a signboard clearly wrote: “Guardian Talisman, metal elementary mid-grade defensive spirit talisman, worth nine low-grade spirit stones”.
Han Li had shopped at many vending stalls, so he had come to understand the prices of these Daoist paper talisman. One low-grade spirit stone could buy a dozen elementary low-grade plain white talisman paper. But fully refined elementary low-grade Daoist paper talismans, depending on the different types of magic spell, were sold separately for two pieces of low-grade spirit stones.
As for the elementary mid-grade spirit talisman, promptly translating a few could sell for six to ten spirit stones. Moreover, defensive spirit talisman were more expensive than offensive spirit talisman.
As Han Li himself had the same type of object, he naturally wanted to take note of it.
After carefully examining stall’s Guardian Talisman, Han Li discovered the other talisman’s Spiritual Qi was much better than the one he kept in his bosom. It was clearly a new product that has not yet been used, but he reckoned that his worn and old product could only be sold at one third of its price at best.
Coming to this conclusion, Han Li laughed bitterly. It seemed that among cultivators, he was still a pauper. He couldn’t help but to touch the article he had on him. Suddenly, he jolted when he remembered that he had a spirit talisman inscribed with a picture of a small sword in his bosom.
Although he still didn’t know the name of the talisman, Han Li believed that this talisman was worthed more than the Guardian Talisman.
When he thought of this, Han Li began to pay close attention to every vendor, taking note to see whether the same Daoist paper talisman with the picture of a small sword was being sold.
Unfortunately, after going around so many stalls, he still did not see a similar product. Instead, at an area with five to six cultivators gathering around, Han Li found someone selling an elementary high-grade spirit talisman.
The signboard beside the spirit talisman wrote: “Soaring Sky Talisman, Wind-attribute elementary high-grade flying-type spirit talisman, price is at 30 low-grade spirit stone or exchange for consolidation-type pill medicine of equal value”.
The moment Han Li saw the signboard, his heart was startled.
After going around many stalls, this was the first elementary high-grade spirit talisman that Han Li had seen. He couldn’t help but to attentively view it. As expected, that spirit paper talisman’s Spiritual Qi was astonishingly rich unlike all the previous low-grade and mid-grade spirit talisman he inspected in the other stalls.
A huge barefooted horsefaced man, who was standing around and viewing the talisman, was unable to restrain himself and asked, “20 pieces of spirit stones, are you willing to exchange?”
The stall’s owner was a capable and vigorous youth. He used his hand and pointed to the signboard, then paid no heed to that person any longer.
“It’s only a flying-type talisman. It’s not even an offensive or defensive spirit talisman. 20 pieces is more than enough!” The horsefaced man made a bid mentioned, dissatisfied.
“Hmph! If it was really an offensive or defensive spirit talisman, you think I would still settle for only 30 pieces? If you don’t have 50 pieces, I won’t even let you have a look! If you want to benefit at the others’ expense, go to other places! I don’t welcome it here.” The youth finally said coldly. But the moment he opened his mouth, he made the huge man’s face turn entirely red.
“Good lad! I, Qin Yeling’s Ye Bao, will remember you. After this gathering ends, let’s compare skills with each other.” The horsefaced huge man said exasperatedly.
(TL: ‘Ye Bao’ (??) means ‘Leaf Leopard’)
“Qin Yeling.” Originally Han Li was beaming happily as he viewed by the side, but after suddenly hearing the name of this place, he grew alarmed.
“Isn’t that the birthplace of the dwarf I killed? Although the midget’s words might not have been true, I must still be careful of this huge man who claims to be from the Ye Clan.”
Thinking up until here, Han Li subconsciously retreated back a few steps, quietly left the area, and went to the next vendor. But he already kept in mind the exchange of consolidation-type pill medicine written on the signboard.
Han Li remembered that he still had a lot of unfinished Yellow Dragon Pellets and Gold Essence Pills, but he didn’t know if those were the types of pills that the youth was requesting for. When there were less people around, he would go again and ask! If he was really successful, then he would have some capital and would be able to exchange for some necessary items.
After Han Li considered this, he turned his head to glance at the youth’s stall and discovered that Ye Bao had unknowingly left to go somewhere else and was no longer there. Among the remaining people left, there was another person who fished out a bottle and handed it over to the youth.
The youth opened the bottle and smelled it a bit, but he then shook his head and returned the bottle to the owner. The owner of the bottle could only leave the place with a face full of regret. The others seemed to have come together with that person and also left shortly afterwards. Currently, there was no one in front of that stall.
Seeing this, Han Li was delighted and slowly returned to the front of the youth’s stall. When the youth saw Han Li, he smiled distractedly, clearly recognising the person who came by once just now.
Han Li did not care that the youth laughed and said, “I have two types of medicine. Can we see if they are suitable for your request?”
After speaking, he took out two small porcelain bottles, one green and one blue, and placed it in front of the youth.
Instead of speaking nonsense, the youth reached his hand out to take the two porcelain bottles and opened the lid one by one. He then brought the bottle openings closer to his nose and smelled hard at both bottles separately. Afterwards, his face revealed a thoughtful expression.
The youth muttered to himself for a while and did not immediately return to normal. Instead he gently pushed the porcelain bottles towards Han Li.
“What is it?” Han Li blinked and asked.
“To tell you the truth, the pill medicines in both bottles were better than the ones I saw from the previous few people. But to me, they still not enough.” The youth hesitated for a moment, but he still shook his head and refused.