However, before Liu Ming could officially start practicing his Cultivation Method, he first needed to retrieve a few Pills of Fasting and some scrolls for simple spells from Nine Infant Mountain.
According to what Xue Yuanhai said, these things were not only free, but they were also absolutely essential for a Beginner Spirit Apostle’s training.
After Liu Ming decided he was going to the mountain, he immediately changed into his dust resistant clothing and left his dwelling to follow a winding path towards the peak of the mountain.
While ascending the mountain, he met a few outer disciples carrying large sacks and parcels going up and down the mountain.
When the others saw the light-green, dust resistant clothes that Liu Ming wore, they respectfully moved aside and let him pass. Only after Liu Ming had gone past them did they dare to continue on their way.
In the Barbarian ghost sect, the status of a Spirit Apostle Disciple and an Outer Sect Disciple were as different as heaven and earth; they could not even be mentioned in the same sentence.
This small road that led directly to the peak was rather steep. Even having trained his body with mortal techniques and having started halfway up the mountain, it still took Liu Ming half an hour or so to finally arrive at the mountain peak.
After Liu Ming set foot inside the mountaintop plaza again, he instantly decided that after he converted a bit of Yuan Li to Fa Li, the first thing he would learn would be the Soaring Sky Technique
Otherwise, if he were to go to another mountain, a round trip would take over half a day. That would be far too inconvenient.
As Liu Ming walked along the plaza, a pair of young girls across from him, walked past.
The more well-developed girl, after looking at Liu Ming, smiled sweetly and said,
“Huh, isn’t this Junior Bai? O, Little Junior Disciple, you are going to the Outer Duty Hall to claim your things right?”
Liu Ming was briefly startled, before he realized that the two females across from him were the pair of female disciples from yesterday’s meeting with the disciples of the Nine Infant Faction. Liu Ming quickly stopped and respectfully said:
“Oh, my two senior sisters, I am indeed going to the Outer Duty Hall to fetch a few Pills of Fasting.”
TL: Senior female = Shi Jie
“Hehe. Looks like Junior Bai does not know our names. Remember this: I’m Gu Meishan and this is your Senior Zhu, Zhu Xinglian.” Gu Meishan said with a smile.
Zhu Xinglian was slightly surprised when she heard Gu Meishan give her name to Liu Ming, but after a slight blush, she respectfully greeted him.
“I dare not forget your names, I promise to remember them.” Liu Ming said with a serious face.
“Okay. Junior Bai, you should quickly go to the Outer Duty Hall, it’s that way. If you’re late you might have to wait until tomorrow to get the Pills of Fasting.” After pausing for a second, Gu Meishan pointed in the direction of the Outer Duty Hall.
Afterward, Gu Meishan held onto Zhu Xinglian as she cast the Soaring Sky Technique.
In an instant, the two flew away on a cloud.
After watching the two leave, Liu Ming walked towards the direction Gu Meishan had pointed at earlier.
Passing through a couple of buildings, Liu Ming arrived at a small hall named “Outer Duty Hall”.
Even though it was called a hall, the actual building was only slightly larger than a decently sized auditorium.
As Liu Ming walked in, he saw a male Outer Sect Disciple sitting behind a table. The disciple had his head lowered as he calculated something with a golden abacus. Next to him was an opened, thick accounting book.
“Oh, are you a new Senior, coming to claim your Pills of Fasting?” The disciple had great reaction time as he quickly stopped what he was doing right after Liu Ming came in and greeted Liu Ming with a smile.
“Yes. Is it true that all disciples can receive three months worth of Pills of Fasting for free?” Liu Ming asked without thinking.
“Definitely. Could senior please take out your name-plate? After I record it, you will be able to receive your Pills of Fasting.” The man quickly said.
“Okay.” Without any hesitation, Liu Ming took out his name-plate and passed it to the man.
After flipping the accounting book to a certain page, the outer disciple pressed the name-plate onto the page.
Immediately, “Bai Chong Tian” appeared as silver words on the page.
“So it’s Senior Bai. Here are your Pills of Fasting. You should take one pill at a time and everytime you do, you won’t need to eat anything, but you will still need to drink a little bit of water during those three days.” The man quickly pulled a palm sized grey sack from the shelf filled with various materials behind him. Along with the name-plate, he respectfully passed them to Liu Ming.
Taking the small cloth sack and his name-plate, Liu Ming opened the sack and dished out a pill with his hand. The pill was slightly yellow and had a faint fragrance.
It was exactly as Xue Yuanshan described it.
Nodding, Liu Ming put away the two things and after a short pause, asked the man:
“Oh right. I want to borrow a few basic spell books. Where should I go?”
“Oh. If senior wants to learn spells, go to the Spirit Spell Pavilion. Just follow the path out this door and you should see it after a bend in the road,” said the man carefully.
Hearing this, Liu Ming smiled and said his thanks before leaving for the Spirit Spell Pavilion.
“You can only borrow three beginner spell books at a time and each book costs one Spirit Stone to borrow.” In front of Liu Ming was an extremely skinny girl that used a harsh tone when speaking to him.
“Senior, isn’t borrowing spell books free?” After hearing the female Spirit Apostle’s words, Liu Ming paused for a second before asking.
“Hmph. It’s only one Spirit Stone for a spell book, that’s basically free. If you don’t have enough Spirit Stones, come back after the Sect distributes Spirit Stones next month to borrow a few books.” The skinny girl said in a condescending tone without leaving any face for her new junior.
“Okay, I’ll borrow these three books first.” Liu Ming was slightly angry in his heart but didn’t show his displeasure. Liu Ming quickly handed the three books from the stack he had beside him, three Spirit Stones and his name-plate over.
The Spirit Stones that he passed over were three pinkie-sized rectangular crystals. They were all about the same size and were pulsating with a soft white light.
The skinny girl took the three books and after looking at the covers impassively said:
“Soaring Sky Technique, Flame Technique and Condensation Technique. You must return these books after a month.”
As soon as she recorded Liu Ming’s identity with his name-plate, she threw the three books along with the name-plate towards Liu Ming and instantly put away the three Spirit Stones.
After being cheated out of his Spirit Stones, Liu Ming naturally did not want to stay and after catching the things thrown at him, he quickly left.
However, soon after leaving, he encountered two people that were going to the Spirit Spell Pavilion as well.
The person leading the way was Shi Chuan with his straight and somewhat handsome face. The person behind him was the red-haired Yu Cheng who had been accepted as a personal disciple.
“Huh?” After seeing Liu Ming, Shi Chuan smiled as he said. “Oh, Junior Bai also came to borrow spell books. I’m bringing Junior Yu to pick out books to borrow.”
The red-haired youth also nodded to Liu Ming.
After smiling and returning the greeting, Liu Ming seemingly offhandedly asked. “Senior, does borrowing spell books at the Spirit Spell Pavilion require Spirit Stones?”
“What? Senior Zhao is charging Spirit Stones from people borrowing spell book again? Outrageous! I am sorry about that. Senior Zhao has some relations to Teacher Gui and thus sometimes goes overboard with what she does. If you can, don’t take her actions to heart. Oh right, how many Spirit Stones did Senior Zhao take? I’ll pay you back.” Slight anger showed on Shi Chuan’s face before he smiled in frustration while taking out his Spirit Stones.
“What do you take me for Senior? I don’t care about a few Spirit Stones. Now that I know Senior Zhao and Teacher Gui are related, I don’t care about them anymore. Senior Shi and Junior Yu, I will be taking my leave now.” Liu Ming waved his hand and immediately left.
Shi Chuan stared at Liu Ming’s back before sighing and taking Yu Cheng towards the Spirit Spell Pavilion.
When Liu Ming finally got back to his dwelling, it was already afternoon.
However, Liu Ming didn’t have any intentions of resting. Instead, he went straight to the well to get a bucket of fresh, cold water. Afterwards, he brought the bucket back into one of the rooms that had nothing but a futon, put the bucket down and sat down onto the futon.
Taking out the cloth sack that had the Pills of Fasting, Liu Ming took one out and popped it into his mouth.
The seemingly solid Pill of Fasting turned into a liquid as soon as it touched the insides of Liu Ming’s mouth and went straight into his stomach.
Immediately, a warm feeling filled Liu Ming and he even felt slightly full.
After confirming the reactions he felt, Liu Ming felt a tinge of excitement in his heart.
These Pills of Fasting really did have a strong effect. After eating just one of these, he would not have to worry about eating anything else and could focus on his training.
Quickly, Liu Ming fetched out the book that had the Dark Bone Method recorded and started reading the Cultivation Method from start to finish.
Although much of Liu Ming’s early life was spent on the Savage Island, there were many well-educated people imprisoned there. With his unique talent of multitasking, Liu Ming was able to absorb much of the information and knowledge, and was probably as well-educated as some of the “famous” geniuses in literature.
However, even with his knowledge, Liu Ming felt that every sentence and word in the Dark Bone Method had two or three meanings which made quick comprehension impossible.
With slight shock, Liu Ming’s expression turned slightly serious. With his fingers pressing on his temple, he activated his double mind talent. His mental conscious immediately split into two; one half concentrating on the Cultivation Method while the other half went into a deep sleep.
Soon, Liu Ming became entirely immersed in understanding the Cultivation Method and was ignorant of everything else.
After a really long period, an extreme pain due to hunger entered Liu Ming’s brain and he was jolted awake. Just as he was about to stand up, Liu Ming’s eyes darkened as he almost fainted.
With a shocked and pained expression, Liu Ming quickly took out a Pill of Fasting and swallowed it. Right after, Liu Ming grabbed the bucket by his side and drank a few gulps of water before his face turned back to a healthier shade.
Even after all that, Liu Ming still felt as if his head was splitting apart, which was a symptom of the overuse of his mental energy.
This time, his pondering of the Cultivation Method had taken five days and five nights. Had it not been for his hunger, Liu Ming might have still been dissecting the Cultivation Method inextricably.
The Dark Bone Method was definitely scary!