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Chapter 292: Is This Really the Divine Elixir? Clearly…
The officials looked at each other in bewilderment. If someone had told them before that they could refine the Elixir of Immortality, they would have surely dismissed it as a baseless claim. After all, out of ten people who made such claims, nine were usually frauds. The idea of concocting the legendary Elixir of Immortality seemed preposterous.
But now, things weren’t so certain. Even dragon bones had appeared; what else could be deemed impossible? The person before them seemed quite capable.
“Esteemed Empty Void Daoist, since you claim to be able to refine the Elixir of Immortality, can you demonstrate it for us to witness?” Gao Tianyao, the Minister of the Ministry of Personnel, inquired.
The Empty Void Daoist shook his head slightly and chuckled, “Refining the Elixir of Immortality isn’t as simple as that. Just the collection of necessary herbs and precious treasures of heaven and earth is beyond count, let alone missing even a single ingredient.”
“Even if the required ingredients are gathered, refining the Elixir of Immortality requires going through eighty-one steps, enduring forty-nine days, and only then can it be successfully refined! A mistake in any step will result in failure.”
“Furthermore, the Elixir of Immortality is a divine formula that seizes the essence of heaven and earth, and it astonishes both the heavens and the underworld. It can’t be easily displayed! Those who lack blessings and virtue, upon seeing it, will have their lives shortened, or even lose their lives!”
Minister Gao Tianyao spoke again, “Then how do you prove your ability? To be frank, our court has often encountered self-proclaimed experts who can refine the Elixir of Immortality. In the end, nine out of ten turned out to be frauds! Daoist, your origins are unknown. How do you expect us to believe you?”
“Proving it is quite simple!” The Empty Void Daoist gave a bow toward the Empress and said, “May Your Majesty permit me to have my disciple bring the alchemical furnace and ingredients into the palace. I will then refine the elixir on the spot. Whether it’s real or fake will be evident at a glance!”
The Empress loudly declared, “Permission granted!”
After about the time it took for an incense stick to burn, everything was ready on the palace square.
The Empty Void Daoist stood beside a large alchemical furnace, which was surrounded by various ingredients. He appeared confident, saying, “Next, I will refine a divine elixir right before you. Everyone, please watch closely!”
As he spoke, he gave a loud shout and threw a handful of fire under the furnace, igniting the charcoal within.
Then, he concentrated his formidable innate qi into his hands, creating a tremendous wind that intensified the flames, turning the furnace red-hot.
Following this, he tossed various herbs into the furnace.
Finally, he astonishingly lifted the furnace and flung it into the air, shaking it as if he was stir-frying the contents.
His performance was both skillful and captivating!
Meanwhile, the fragrance of the herbs gradually permeated the air.
People couldn’t help but nod in agreement. One elderly courtier even chuckled, “This Empty Void Daoist seems to possess quite some skill. This old man is starting to believe him a bit!”
“Modern fraudsters are becoming increasingly sophisticated. It’s premature to draw conclusions!” Another senior courtier remained skeptical, “Whether he truly has the ability will depend on the effectiveness of the elixir he produces!”
At this moment, the Empress suddenly turned her head to look at Lin Beifan and smiled, “Minister Lin, you’re erudite and talented! Regarding Empty Void Daoist’s abilities and the elixir he’s refining, what’s your opinion?”
Everyone turned their attention to Lin Beifan, wanting to hear his insights.
Lin Beifan humbly said, “Regarding the art of alchemy, I have only a rudimentary understanding. I wouldn’t want to embarrass myself by pretending to know more than I do.”
“You may have a rudimentary understanding, but that’s better than knowing nothing at all! Since we have time, why don’t you briefly explain it to us? Think of it as a way to pass the time!” the Empress chuckled.
“Yes, Your Majesty! Then I shall provide a simple explanation!” Lin Beifan cleared his throat and proceeded, “As I understand it, elixirs are classified into nine grades based on their efficacy, with Grade One being the strongest and Grade Nine the weakest. The higher the grade, the better the efficacy.”
“Grade Nine elixirs are merely ordinary medicines, slightly better than those found in apothecaries. However, if an elixir reaches Grade Three or above, it can be deemed a Sacred Elixir, possessing miraculous effects such as resurrecting the dead and regenerating bones.”
The civil and military officials inhaled sharply, “That’s truly astonishing!”
“If an elixir reaches Grade One, it can be called an Immortal Elixir, capable of remarkable feats that shake heaven and earth, exhibiting a variety of mysterious and unfathomable effects. For example, consuming it immediately raises one to the level of a grandmaster. Perhaps even if one dies for three days, they could be revived from the underworld. It might even bestow eternal life…”
The civil and military officials gasped again, “Truly… so astonishing!”
Lin Beifan continued, “Those who can refine elixirs have a unified title: alchemists. They’re also classified into Grades One through Nine. The type of elixir an alchemist can produce corresponds to their grade.”
“Alchemists are extremely rare, and Grade Three alchemists are even rarer! They’re as rare as phoenix feathers and unicorn horns. It’s difficult to find more than a few in a thousand years! Alchemists like these are referred to as Sacred Elixir Alchemists because only they can refine Sacred Elixirs.”
“Sacred Elixir Alchemists, owing to their ability to create Sacred Elixirs, are known throughout the world and are esteemed guests of all the mighty. Their every word and action can dictate the rise and fall of a nation. Once upon a time, an empire offended a Sacred Elixir Alchemist. The alchemist spoke just a few words, and all the powerful figures in the world responded. In the end, that empire was utterly destroyed!”
The civil and military officials gasped once again, “Truly… overwhelmingly… astonishing!”
Lin Beifan continued to speak, and the crowd listened, captivated by his words. A vast and intricate world of alchemy unfolded before them. After Lin Beifan finished speaking, everyone had a comprehensive understanding of the alchemist profession.
“I never thought such a profession as alchemists existed in the world. I truly am ignorant!” one official exclaimed.
“Yes, it’s truly astounding! Even an ordinary alchemist possesses such power! If they reach the level of a Sacred Elixir Alchemist, their every word and action could shake the very foundation of the nation, perhaps even bringing down an empire!”
“A Sacred Elixir Alchemist is probably a figure among immortals. We absolutely mustn’t offend them!”
The Empress also nodded and spoke with gravity, “Your words are absolutely correct, esteemed officials! In the future, if we encounter alchemists, we must never offend them. We must treat them with respect, understood?”
“Yes, Your Majesty!” the officials replied in unison.
“Your Majesty, esteemed officials, there’s no need to be so concerned!” Lin Beifan clasped his hands.
The Empress smiled wryly and shook her head, “Minister Lin, how can we not be concerned? Even an ordinary alchemist holds such immense power. If we inadvertently offend them, it could jeopardize the entire nation!”
“Especially the legendary Sacred Elixir Alchemists; their influence is comparable to that of transcendent grandmasters. We mustn’t offend them!”
“I never expected that such a mysterious and powerful group of people existed in the world! Fortunately, Minister Lin has some understanding and shared this knowledge, otherwise, we would still be in the dark!”
“It seems we’ll need to be cautious in our actions in the future!”
Everyone nodded in agreement. “Your Majesty, esteemed officials, there’s really no need!” Lin Beifan waved his hands repeatedly. “Actually, everything I said just now was fabricated by me. In reality, there are no alchemists in the world, so there’s no need to worry!”
The Empress and the civil and military officials: “WTF…”
Every one of them stared at Lin Beifan furiously!
You spoke so convincingly just now, and we believed every word! Now you’re telling us it’s false? You made it up?
You made us worry for nothing?
We’re even feeling murderous!
The Empress put on a half-smile, half-frown expression, “Minister Lin, you dare to fool us like this? Do you know that this is a crime of deceiving the ruler?”
“Your Majesty, you must issue a decree to punish him, otherwise, the public’s anger won’t be appeased!”
“Your Majesty, please impose punishment and discipline Prefect Lin Beifan!”
Everyone was deeply upset and angry, wanting to take action against Lin Beifan.
Lin Beifan felt very wronged, “Indeed, I only have a basic understanding! The information I shared was all from a miscellaneous novel I read. But since you insisted, I had to say those things!”
Everyone was fuming, unable to believe that this guy was trying to reason his way out.
“Minister Lin, you’re truly mischievous!” the Empress scolded with a hint of exasperation. “In the future, please refrain from saying things without a basis. We can forgive you this once, but we won’t forgive you a second time!”
“Yes, Your Majesty!”
With that, the matter was brushed aside.
After another cup of tea’s time, Empty Void Daoist finally finished refining the elixir.
“The Divine Elixir is ready, please review it, Your Majesty!” Empty Void Daoist presented three transparent pearl-like pills that emitted a slight heat and a fragrant medicinal scent. They looked extraordinary.
An old official asked, “What kind of elixir is this, and what effects does it have?”
“This elixir is called the Divine Enlightenment Pill!” Empty Void Daoist smoothed his thin mustache with satisfaction and said proudly, “Once this pill is ingested, the soul can leave the body, float in the ethereal realm, soar through the sky, and meet celestial beings!”
The civil and military officials were stunned.
“The soul leaves the body, soars through the sky, and meets celestial beings?”
“Does it really have such effects?”
“Could this be a scam?”
“But you can have someone try the pill!” Empty Void Daoist proclaimed with conviction.
“Who will try it?” the Empress looked at the civil and military officials. They were afraid it might be poisonous, so no one dared to try.
Finally, a eunuch was called to test the pill.
At first, he didn’t show any reaction after ingesting it.
But after a moment, his whole body started to feel heavy, and he entered a state of half-consciousness. Then, a somewhat foolish and blissful smile spread across his face, and he burst into laughter.
“What… is happening?”
Empty Void Daoist exclaimed loudly, “Everyone, there’s no need to panic. He’s currently in an out-of-body experience, meeting celestial beings!”
“Is he really… meeting celestial beings?”
Just as they were speaking, the eunuch suddenly became astonished, “Celestial! I’m seeing a celestial being! Haha…”
Everyone was alarmed.
After about the time it takes to burn an incense stick, the eunuch finally regained consciousness.
Excitedly, he reported, “Reporting to Your Majesty, after consuming the Divine Enlightenment Pill, this humble servant did indeed feel a lightness in the body. I felt as though I was floating outside my body, eventually seeming to float beyond the sky and encountering celestial maidens!”
“He truly… encountered celestial beings?” Everyone was surprised again, still finding it hard to believe.
With a triumphant tone, Empty Void Daoist said, “If you esteemed officials don’t believe it, you can try it!”
The civil and military officials started to waver.
Lin Beifan squinted his eyes; isn’t this just the concept of “Met Powder”?