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Time passed in an unfathomable fashion. In the underground world where Yi Yun entered seclusion, the days and nights could be determined from the pure Yang sun in the sky, but there was only one season. Thanks to the rich Yuan Qi, the vegetation here was evergreen.
It was truly a paradise. Ling Xie'er felt that she could live happily for the rest of time in this pocket world, especially when she looked at the idyllic scenery and thought of how Yi Yun was with her.
The only imperfection was that she almost never saw Yi Yun take a break.
Day after day, Yi Yun was constantly busy. For example, one time he had entered the alchemical lab and stayed in there for two years with the door closed.
Ever since Ling Xie'er woke up, the Heretical God Fire Seed experienced a qualitative change. It allowed Yi Yun to have even greater control over it.
Back when Yi Yun first obtained the Heretical God Fire Seed, he could only control one wisp when refining pills. Later on, thanks to the precious herb that Dong Shaoqing had brought him, Yi Yun had refined and consumed Mental Nourishing Pills. With him gaining more skill in controlling the flame, he was able to barely control two wisps of the Heretical God Fire Seed at once.
And now, after Ling Xie'er woke up, the Heretical God Fire Seed began possessing a spirit. In addition, Ling Xie'er had immense trust and reliance on Yi Yun. This was reflected in the Heretical God Fire Seed, as the flame became completely intrinsic to Yi Yun.
Now when Yi Yun used the Heretical God Fire Seed, he felt as though he had possessed it for tens of millions of years. He could control ten wisps of the flame while refining a pill without breaking a sweat.
This made Yi Yun's alchemical skills and Desolate Heaven technique increase rapidly. Therefore, over the two years of seclusion, Yi Yun began attempting to refine the sage-level pills that were recorded in the divine alchemist's notes.
Due to the great variety of pills and relics, in addition to the discovery of new pill formulas, there was no grading among lower quality pills.
However, for truly top-grade pills, there were unspoken grades. People who could refine sage-level pills and relics were considered alchemist sages.
The reason for Skyfire Sacred Hands's pride was that the Nine Cauldron Alchemical Sect had previously produced two alchemist sages. It was one of them that had managed to obtain the Extreme Frost-ice Flame mother flame.
These two alchemist sages determined the legacy of the Nine Cauldron Alchemical Sect. Their work had also facilitated the exuberance of the Nine Cauldron Alchemical Sect.
And now, with Yi Yun obtaining large quantities of treasured herbs from the destruction of the Myriad Immortal Pavilion, he had dozens of materials, all of them extremely precious.
With these materials, the enhanced Heretical God Fire Seed, and the Purple Crystal's help, Yi Yun finally met the minimum requirement needed to attempt refining sage-level pills.
Unfortunately, he was still somewhat lacking. All he could refine were quasi-sage level pills.
This difference of a single word left Yi Yun extremely displeased. Despite having control over all sorts of favorable conditions, he could not overcome that tiny obstruction.
In fact, even in the Candle Cauldron Divine Territory, which was well-known for its alchemy, quasi-sage alchemists were already extremely honorable. They were at the level of sect masters or grand elders of a major sect.
Even Skyfire Sacred Hands himself was still far from a quasi-sage.
Inside the alchemical lab, Yi Yun exhaled. He felt the pinch when he looked at the destroyed dregs in the cauldron. Although he had tried his best to avoid using the most valuable herbs for refinement, he still found it a pity when some valuable supplementary herbs were destroyed.
Some of the supplementary herbs would make Supremacies turn red with envy. Only a person as wealthy as Yi Yun could use herbs of that grade as fodder for an experiment.
"This can't carry on. If I attempt any more, I'll be wasting too many herbs. My cultivation has been delayed and I'm still too young. I lack the preparation, so it's just too difficult to become an alchemical sage immediately!"
With this thought in mind, he glanced at the floating Divine Alchemy Cauldron. Suddenly, he had a thought.
The Divine Alchemy Cauldron was a supreme-grade cauldron. To a very large extent, it determined the success rate of pill refinement. Unfortunately, the Divine Alchemy Cauldron was incomplete!
Its quality had dropped drastically because of its missing core array.
"If… I can fix the Divine Alchemy Cauldron, then perhaps I'll be able to refine sage-level pills."
With this thought in mind, Yi Yun felt somewhat tempted.
Everything would be completely different once he became an alchemist sage. He could attempt to refine Celestial Yuan Pills, True Dragon Relics, Great Unity Luck Pills, and other sage-level pills. Then, the day of him becoming a Supremacy would not be far off.
When that time came, powers like the Myriad Immortal Pavilion would be nothing to him. There would be no need for him to borrow the strength of City Lord Qin and company. He alone could easily obliterate any foe.
Unfortunately, the Divine Alchemy Cauldron's quality was too high. In order to mend it, he needed a refinement master and an ancient mystic array. This was easier said than done.
Another year passed, and the day arrived when Yi Yun finally came out of seclusion.
Ling Xie'er missed him terribly after not seeing him for so long.
"Brother Yi, why did you enter seclusion for so long? What did you do?" Ling Xie'er was somewhat clingy to Yi Yun. She had already run over to him and warmly held his arms.
Yi Yun smiled as he ruffled Ling Xie'er's tiny head. He did not say anything, but instead took out a number of bottles.
All the top treasured herbs that were swept away from the Myriad Immortal Pavilion had now been transformed into pills by Yi Yun.
Among them were nearly a hundred pills at the quasi-sage grade! As for pills that were slightly lower in grade, there were more than a thousand of them.
Although Yi Yun still lacked the ability to refine sage-grade pills, it did not stop him from using them. Without saving anything, he refined all of them.
Although it was a little wasteful of the medicinal essence, it was still an acceptable trade-off. After all, treasured herbs were meant to be used. If he ran out in the future, he could always search for them again. However, if his time and potential were wasted, they could never be gotten back. Now, Yi Yun was trying to increase his strength at all costs.
"So many pills!" Ling Xie'er said in astonishment.
"Yes. Unfortunately, my alchemical skills are lacking. I wasn't able to refine the best but I can make do with these."
If other sects heard Yi Yun's nonchalant reply, they would probably cry.
Such a batch of pills was worth more than the combined pill rooms of several large factions. Even if they had the same treasured herbs as Yi Yun, they would still need to plead with other refinement sects to refine the herbs for them. Even then, if they managed to hire someone to do so, the result would be at Skyfire Sacred Hands's level. The quality of the refined pills would be far inferior to Yi Yun's.
Yi Yun chose about a dozen soul nurturing pills from his stash, including the remaining Hollow Soul Pills, and handed them to Ling Xie'er.
"Xie'er, it's time you began cultivating."
"Cultivating?" Ling Xie'er was a little lost when she heard that term. Ever since she came into being, over her hundreds of millions of years of existence, she had never cultivated.
"Yes. The more you cultivate, the stronger your soul will be. Your incorporeal body will also become harder to damage. Furthermore, the spirituality of your true form, the Heretical God Fire Seed, will also become stronger. It will be easier for me to control it, allowing me to attempt even higher grade pills."
Ling Xie'er was taken aback momentarily when she heard Yi Yun's words. "My cultivation will help Brother Yi?"
"Yes. Xie'er, after you woke up, my ability to control the Heretical God Fire Seed had increased severalfold."
"Alright, I'll cultivate then." Ling Xie'er nodded heavily. Her raven-black eyes seemed to sparkle.