Qin Lie bade farewell to Liu Yan and Gao Yu, used his identity card to sign in at the entrance to the Scripture Tower, and then walked in.
The Scripture Tower only held three levels. The first level was full of shelves and bookcases with all kinds of books pertaining to the martial way, introductions to each of the individual levels of the Refinement and Natal Opening Realms, the categories and levels of artificers and materials, as well as explanations on the general knowledge of cultivation.
The first floor had books on this area, and all of them were introductory, so they did not have substantial content.
The second floor had spirit arts and techniques for cultivation. Those who possessed a higher cultivation realm would come to read the books on the second level that specialized in cultivation in order to increase their own strength.
The third floor stored spirit arts and techniques that were higher leveled, and only those that reached the Natal Opening Realm could qualify to enter.
When Qin Lie entered, he walked around the first floor. He found the first level held people that were in the Refinement Realm, and the large majority of them were in the fifth and sixth levels.
For the subordinate forces, they needed to break through to the Natal Opening Realm before they were twenty to enter Nebula Pavilion.
Yet for the martial practitioners that were born in Nebula Pavilion, they were not restricted by this.
There were many Refinement Realm martial practitioners here whose fathers were martial practitioners of Nebula Pavilion, whose parents who died while fighting on behalf of Nebula Pavilion, and parents were still fighting for Nebula Pavilion. There was also an extremely small group whose parents had broken through to the Manifestation Realm and were fortunate enough to be admitted to Dark Asura Hall.
Because their parents had fought for Nebula Pavilion and given their life to Nebula Pavilion, even though they had not entered the Natal Opening Realm, they were still able to enjoy the Nebula Pavilion’s resources and were born as a member of Nebula Pavilion.
People that lived around Qin Lie were people of this kind; they used Nebula Pavilion’s resources to cultivate.
“《Detailed Explanation of the Nine Little Realms》, 《Identification of Low Grade Spirit Materials》, 《Elementary Artifact Forging》…”
Qin Lie silently roamed in front of the bookcases. In a short while, three books that stirred his interest appeared. These three books were placed in different bookcases, and the bookcases were closed, so one needed to request someone to open them.
“Please help me take out these three books,” Qin Lie called lightly.
On this floor, there were two martial practitioners from Nebula Pavilion that were responsible for handling such matters. One of them came and had Qin Lie show his identity card. Then, he said, “To read 《Detailed Explanation of Nine Little Realms》 requires fifty contribution points, 《Identification of Low Grade Spirit Materials》 requires thirty contribution points, and 《Elementary Artifact Forging》 requires forty contribution points. In total, that will be one hundred and twenty contribution points. Mn, you can borrow them for one month. If you cannot return them in time, there will be an increase in contribution points. Do you have any questions?”
Three books, requiring one hundred and twenty contribution points in total. It caused Qin Lie to be slightly shocked.
He had not expected that the three books on common knowledge in the martial realms would require so many contribution points. He silently rejoiced that he hadn’t used all his contribution points back when he was in Ling Town. Otherwise, he would be stuck now.
“Mn, then these three first.” Qin Lie handed over the identity card.
That person helped him deduct it and then took out a key to open the bookcases, retrieving and passing on the books Qin Lie wanted to him. He then said, “If the books are damaged or lost, you will need to compensate ten times the cost to borrow them. Remember this.”
“Mn, I understand.” Taking the three books, he looked in the direction of the Scripture Tower’s second floor, decided against going up and left the Scripture Tower.
Three very ordinary books on the first level had taken one hundred and twenty contribution points. One could imagine the fee for renting valuable spirit arts and techniques on the upper levels would require many times the number of contribution points the books on the first level required. It was something he temporarily could not fund, so he did not need to waste his time.
It was evening by the time he came out with the three books. He went straight to the little room that Han Feng had arranged for him.
“Detailed Explanation of the Nine Little Realms…” Inside the room, he picked up the first book and started to read.
This book only introduced the situation of the nine little realms in the Refinement Realm. It stated the tricks to breaking through to the seventh, eighth, and ninth levels, including what kind of state of the body would need to be in order to reach its corresponding realm.
In accordance with what he knew, the seventh level was only satisfactory when spirit energy could be channeled externally. The eighth level was where the acupuncture points could be filled with spirit energy and where energy could be released through them.
As for the ninth level… the spirit sea in the dantian had to form a whirlpool. When the whirlpool formed, that was the sign of the breakthrough.
Of the nine levels of the Refinement Realm, the first six were the accumulation of spirit energy, the refinement of the body. The seventh level was the beginning of the difficulty, and the breakthrough to each level had a very precise method.
This 《Detailed Explanation of the Nine Little Realms》 explained the nine levels of the refinement realm in detail. The eighth level only needed the acupuncture points to be filled with energy. A breakthrough would be true no matter what kind of energy it was. This point was said explicitly.
If he had read this book a long time ago, the difficult problems that he had struggled with when breaking through to the eighth level would have been solved much earlier.
“Ninth level, need to form a whirlpool, the whirlpool would appear in the spirit sea of the dantian and can gradually purify spirit energy…” Qin Lie pondered and gradually felt a direction to train in. “It seems that I need to put some time into cultivation and try to form a whirlpool. The ninth level is a threshold that I need to cross as soon as possible.”
He did not continue to read the two books on spirit materials and artifacts and instead concentrated on forming the whirlpool of the ninth level. He gave in-depth thought to it and then started to put it into practice.
Concentrating and calming his mind, he closed his eyes and channeled spirit energy.
He used his mind to detect and look at the spirit sea in the dantian. He could feel the field of spirit energy in the spirit sea. The spirit energy was like a sea that covered everything. He tried to manipulate it to form a whirlpool. He wanted to form a twister in the spirit sea of the dantian to suck in spirit energy and purify spirit energy, causing it to become purer…
His mind focused, and his consciousness floated in the vast spirit sea in the dantian like a slight gust of wind.
The slight wind blew the spirit energy, and the spirit energy moved like the wind. It spun as it gusted and gathered more around it…
His soul easily entered the spirit sea of the dantian and seemed to see a field of white clouds; that was a cloud sea made from spirit energy.
In here, the spirit energy he gathered were also clouds. It needed to form a hurricane that twisted the spirit clouds together and spin according to his thoughts to form a whirlpool.
Yet, while the spirit energy that turned to clouds was condensed together and was also spinning, its spirit energy gradually dissipated in its revolutions…
The clouds formed from spirit energy dissipated as though they were diluted by water and could not be gathered for long periods of time.
This way, it naturally was impossible to form the whirlpool, and since he could not create a whirlpool in the spirit sea, he could not purify spirit energy.
A long while later, Qin Lie woke up, tired. It was deep in the night, the silver moon hung high in the sky outside.
“It’s natural that I cannot succeed in one try, I have to work at it slowly. Mn, at least I found the direction I needed through 《Detailed Explanation of Nine Little Realms》 and know what to work towards.” Qin Lie said to himself, “But the spirit energy in the spirit sea of the dantian is extremely thick. This means that inscribing spirit diagrams also increases mind energy and spirit energy.”
In this period of time, his attention had been placed on inscribing spirit diagrams. From the Spirit Gathering diagram to the Amplification diagram, he did not slack off one bit.
Inscribing the spirit diagrams consumed great amounts of mind energy and spirit energy. He would only stop practicing when he used up his spirit energy and mind energy. Then, he would proceed to use spirit pills to slowly recover. When his dantian was full again, he noticed that the spirit energy had grown.
“Practicing to inscribe spirit diagrams can increase mind energy and spirit energy but cannot directly help me to breakthrough a level. It seems that I need to rationally divide my time between martial practice and artifact forging. I need to find an equilibrium so the two can complement each other to allow me to improve quickly in both areas.”
His eyes were bright and had a new insight into progressing in realm and artifact forging.
This night, he continued to work on forming a whirlpool in the dantian’s spirit sea and only napped a little while when the sun was about to up.
The next day, he woke up when the sun was high up in the sky, and after going to the Nebula Pavilion’s Food Hall to eat something, he walked alone to Yao Tai’s forging grounds.
Yao Tai’s forging grounds was even more remote than the place where Qin Lie was living. There wasn’t a single house within one hundred meters of that place.
The reason was that Yao Tai had caused a few accidents in the past when forging and created large explosions, so he was ordered to move to such a place to prevent him from wounding the martial practitioners that were cultivating nearby.
In front of the stone hall, were two great copper cauldrons made from limestone. Fire was burning inside the cauldrons, and the crackling sounds coming from inside seemed like the sounds of materials exploding.
Inside the hall came the sound of cursing as though someone was speaking to themselves and venting their anger to the heavens.
Qin Lie stilled at the door and shouted, “Great Master Yao, I am Qin Lie and have come to report to you today to be your assistant.”
“Assistant?” The person inside the hall stopped cursing and greeted, “The door isn’t closed, come in.”
Qin Lie stepped into the hall.
The hall was about ten meters tall and held up by six stone pillars. The interior of the hall was vast, and the walls were lined with large stone cabinets. The cabinets were filled with all kinds of materials, stones of different colors, unnameable wood, many beast bones, special ores, strange scales, the teeth, claws and furs of spirit beasts, and so on…
A large crimson smelting furnace was in the middle of the hall. Scarlet red fire crystals had been placed under the furnace.
A middle-aged man that was slightly plump stood next to the large smelting furnace. His clothes were dirty and his hair like a bird’s nest as he looked at Qin Lie. “What benefits did they give you? Three years, I’ve asked many times in the past over the last three years, but they didn’t arrange a single person for me. What did they promise you?”
“I requested to come.” Qin Lie was shocked. “I admire Great Master, so I asked to specifically become your assistant. I wasn’t promised any benefits.”
“Really?” Yao Tai narrowed his eyes and examined Qin Lie. He nodded and said, “No matter what goal you came with, no matter if you are dumb or if you were promised benefits, since you have come, you have to listen to my orders. What I tell you to do, you will do, understand?”
“Understood” Qin Lie had prepared and said with a nod and smile.
“Understand artifact forging?”
“Then learn from the beginning, learn to recognize basic spirit materials to prevent yourself from putting in the wrong spirit materials in your duties in the future and wasting all my previous efforts.”
“I will listen to Great Master about everything.”
“Mn, your attitude isn’t bad.”