Chapter 329 – A New School
Under Li Qingshan’s suggestion, Xiao An tried ingesting a black lotus seed. Immediately, the flames released some extremely pure essence of flesh and blood, enough to rival the flesh and blood of over a thousand people.
Xiao An immediately began cultivating, refining the lotus seed completely.
Li Qingshan stopped worrying too. Originally, he planned on taking Xiao An on another trip outside. However, not only would it be time-consuming, but he could easily attract suspicion too.
A bloodthirsty personality could explain why he killed, but the disappearance of the corpses would be difficult to explain. If he caught the attention of someone observant, then he would be in trouble. These lotus seeds should be enough to provide for Xiao An’s cultivation for a very long time. At the very least, she would not be held back by the lack of flesh and blood.
Leaving Xiao An there to cultivate, Li Qingshan opened the door. The moon shone brightly with a few stars in the night sky, and white snow covered the entire courtyard. He also had to make some preparations for his own path.
That night, Li Qingshan visited Benevolence island and Wuwei island first and found Juechenzi and Ru Xin. The schools of Daoism and Medicine were the most skilled in alchemy. As the primary disciples of the two schools, they were both in charge of some pills. He chose some higher quality pills and bought them, also reminding them to not tell anyone else.
The two of them were neck deep in work after the disaster that the academy had faced. Ru Xin was in a hurry to heal the injured, while Juechenzi had been handling the various matters of the school of Daoism in the slovenly daoist priest’s place, as he was still missing. They had a short conversation with him and handed the pills to him in a hurry before getting back to work. Even Ru Xin was not in the mood to joke around.
In the end, he went to the school of Miscellany’s Treasure island. He exchanged all the remaining spiritual stones on him for pills in the main store of Miscellaneous Goods. He also kept an eye out for the prices of other items. He discovered that the prices of spiritual artifacts and talismans had begun to increase.
He could imagine the shock that the cultivators had experienced from this battle. Li Qingshan gave it some consideration, but he still decided against selling the talismans and spiritual artifacts on him.
Returning to Cloudwisp island, Xiao An was still meditating. As it seemed, refining the black lotus seed would take quite a lot of time.
Li Qingshan did not disturb her. He thought over everything he had gained today. Because he had focused on choosing relatively better pills, he did not have a lot of them, but it should still be enough for him to reach the third layer with the Ox Demon’s Fist of Great Strength.
He did not plan on entering seclusion to cultivate. As long as he ingested pills and practised daily, he should achieve success before long. By then, his body would become stronger once again, and he would be much more confident when facing the heavenly tribulation.
The sky gradually lit up, and Hao Pingyang came to visit him. He told Li Qingshan a piece of news—Zhang Lanqing had died.
He had died at the hands of an Altar Lord. All he was hit by was a single attack, and he was reduced to nothing. He could not fight back at all. If it were not for the fact that the Altar Lord wanted to capture Hao Pingyang alive, he would have been dead already too.
When he mentioned that, Hao Pingyang’s voice became hoarse, and his eyes reddened.
Li Qingshan asked after quite a while of silence, “Is there anything I can do?”
“I’ve just come to tell you this. He has already been avenged. I plan on paying a visit to his home.” Hao Pingyang said a few other things absentmindedly before leaving.
This was the last bit of existence that this dark-skinned, honest-to-the-core man had left behind.
Li Qingshan stood in silence for a little longer before beginning to practise his forms. In the empty bamboo forest, he practised the Ox Demon’s Fist of Great Strength again and again. He did not stop until he used up the final shred of his strength. Only then did he fall down on the ground, huffing and puffing.
The sky gradually grew brighter. Today, they held a collective funeral on Contention island. It was called a funeral, but most of the cultivators who had died had not even left behind any remains. Even if they did leave behind remains, they had been delivered back home to be buried too.
The various disciples lit lanterns over the lake, remembering their fellow disciples that they might or might not have known.
Li Qingshan gazed off into the distance. The lantern light drifted apart in the darkness, gradually growing further and further away. He returned to Cloudwisp island and continued cultivating.
Pills after pills were converted into energy in his body before turning into power that surged and churned within him, awaiting for a time of release.
On Contention island, a building rose straight from the ground. Due to the engineering of the school of Mohism, they built structures at a startling rate. There were many mechanical structures too.
At the top of the building, the twelve school leaders gathered in a single room.
The slovenly daoist priest was utterly displeased with this result. His pursuit of Altar Lord Black Lotus had failed in the end. He had almost leapt to his feet and erupted with curses when the One Thought master glanced at him, but he held himself back in consideration for the atmosphere.
Earth elder Huang took great puffs of his pipe. The school of Agriculture had suffered heavy losses, but not in terms of disciples. Instead, his precious fields and orchards had sustained quite a lot of damage. When the cultists of the White Lotus saw so many spiritual fruits, they forcefully plucked them regardless of whether they were ripe or not. He ended up getting it all back, but it was still quite the loss.
Standing behind them to their sides were their primary disciples. They all sat on their heels quietly too.
Only Wang Pushi lacked a person behind him. Hua Chengzan had entered secluded cultivation. For him to neglect the bigger picture despite his personality, it only demonstrated how determined he was.
Xiao An wore black, silken robes. A wooden pin barely managed to hold it together in a bun, but quite a lot of her long hair still flowed behind her. After digesting a black lotus seed, she had advanced with her cultivation of the Path of White Bone and Great Beauty yet again, and she had conveniently pushed her cultivation as a Qi Practitioner to the eighth layer too, which was a better match to her identity as a primary disciple and provided an explanation for the pills the One Thought master had given her.
Li Qingshan’s gaze brushed past Ru Xin. She nodded slightly in acknowledgement as her lips curled slightly. This disastrous event that had shaken up the entire academy did not seem to affect her much. He believed that if it were not for the fact that she had to consider the feelings of others, she would still be joking around fearlessly.
This was not just lacking a sense of parental selflessness as a doctor. She was basically heartless. It made Li Qingshan feign a glare at her.
As the main person in charge, Liu Zhangqing sat in the main seat just like before. He cleared his throat and attracted everyone’s attention, saying, “Through this disaster of the academy…”
After a sorrowful grieving over the deaths, he suddenly changed the topic. “… but it has also exposed many holes in our system. A certain school leader was so weak and powerless that he couldn’t even keep an eye over his own waist tablet, so is he really shameless enough to continue holding a position he does not deserve?”
He did not mention a name, but everyone’s gazes landed on Liu Chuanfeng, who sat at the very end. Despite his drunken dream, it still had not managed to save him completely.
Liu Chuanfeng felt awkward, but he was accustomed to this. It was not like Liu Zhangqing had the right to dismiss him as a school leader anyway. The only reason why he had to lose his waist tablet was because it was a component in the plan too, so just how was he supposed to stop all of it?
Liu Zhangqing said, “Our academy is in urgent need of a capable and responsible school leader to watch over the formation on Cloudwisp island.”
Li Qingshan was perplexed. Surely a school could not claim two islands at once? The school leaders would be overwhelmed if that were the case!
Liu Zhangqing said, “In order to make up for our academy’s lost strength as quickly as possible, I recommend establishing a new school in our Academy of the Hundred Schools of the Clear River prefecture, one that can protect the formation on Cloudwisp island. Fellow Chu, please come in!”