Translator: Flying Lines
Seeing Shiao Chen coming near, the two direct disciples guarding the library scanned him immediately with their divine senses and became submissive. They saluted to and greeted him, "Senior Brother."
Without an expression, Shiao Chen nodded and said nonchalantly, "I want to go inside."
"One low grade spirit stone per hour for the first floor, two for the second, and for the third, entrance is only possible with Chief Master's warrant. And one more thing, Senior Brother, all things inside are not allowed to be taken out." The direct disciple on the left said with respect.
Nodding yet slightly hesitant, Shiao Chen took two low grade spirit stones out of his storage bag and gave them to the disciples, "I will be in the first floor for four hours." The choice was made because the Disguising Pill could only last for six hours.
Though feeling a little bit strange, the two disciples still handed a jade token over to Shiao Chen deferentially.
"With this, Senior Brother can stay for four hours."
Remaining poker-faced, Shiao Chen nodded and walked directly into the library.
"Which branch is this Senior Brother in? He is not an acquaintance to me. And it's weird and a waste of spirit stones for him to just get into the first floor."
"It's none of your business. The security system is not triggered, which is enough for us to know he is not a spy but a disciple of our Luoyun Valley. Maybe, he used to be absorbed in closed-door training. You can tell from his cultivation, the 7th level of Qi Refining. And it's his choice to decide which floor he will be in. All we need to do is just to take spirit stones. It's not wise to be curious."
"Yes, Brother. I will keep it in mind."
Continuing talking in whispers for a few more sentences, they looked up and saw envy in each other's eyes and then quieted down.
It was the first time that Shiao Chen had been here in the library, a three-story building. The first floor was for anecdotes and was seldom visited by disciples.
The second floor was for cultivation methods and incantations. It was a place where direct disciples could find suitable manuals.
As for the third floor, there stored top-level manuals and invaluable written cultivation experience of previous achievers. Only a few in the valley had the right to go inside.
However, Shiao Chen didn’t come here this time for cultivation methods but for possible clues of why he couldn't get through to the next level of Foundation Establishment. Therefore, he started to thumb through the jade slips immediately after a few breaths.
During the four hours, the library was visited by quite a few disciples. Upon entering the library, they were surprised to see that there should be one disciple concentrated in reading jade tablets in the first floor. Despising him in heart, they thought he was just ignorant enough to stay in the first floor. All in the valley knew good things were in the other two floors. Despite their thoughts, no one came near reminding him about it, for they paid to read here not to meddle with things.
Things before eyes changed suddenly and Shiao Chen was directly transferred to the entrance of the library when time was up. He looked up, gave back the jade token, and left in a rush with his head down. Though he learnt a lot, it was still a mystery why he couldn't break the bottleneck. It seemed that he needed to wait for four more hours to take another Disguising Pill and went inside again. With nobody else in sight, Shiao Chen gradually hided his existence and sat behind a giant rock quietly, waiting with his leg crossed.
After the pill efficacy was gone, Shiao Chen waited for two more hours to take another pill and then headed directly to the library. This time, he became a black-faced youth.
Handing over three low grade spirit stones, despite their astonishment, Shiao Chen again bowed his head and read, trying to find clues.
Time flied. Suddenly, Shiao Chen raised his head, threw the jade token to the guarding disciples, and rushed out. The pill efficacy was gone just the moment he was out of the sight of the guarding disciples. Shiao Chen hided himself again and waited for another two hours. He then turned into an ordinary youth by swallowing another pill and went straightly to the library.
Outside the library, the two guarding disciples glanced at each other in astonishment and saw through the doubt in each other's eyes, "He is the third one asking to stay in the first floor this day. Are these guys all for possible treasures hidden there?"
A few days later, rumors came out. It was said that hidden in the first floor there were manuals recording the cultivation experience and methods of a former achiever at Gold Core. The manuals were placed by the Sect deliberately, waiting for someone with luck. What's more, some claimed that there was someone who did get and practice one of the manuals and ended up with multiplied strength. They said with certainty as if they saw it with their own eyes. Therefore, the first floor of the library turned out to be such a popular spot that endless direct disciples flocked to it, hunting for manuals. And there happened to be disciples who accidentally found several top-grade manuals hidden in the anecdotes, which in turn brought a greater fame to the first floor.
Of course, this was a later story. Shiao Chen was unaware of their wild guesses. Extensive reading of hundreds of jade tablets was finally paid off. Shiao Chen got what he wanted.
He read the found tablet carefully with his divine sense for a long time and raised his head, indulged in thoughts.
"Spiritual root? According to the tablet, the probable reason behind my bottleneck lies in the absence of a spiritual root. How can I fix it?" Shiao Chen read it over and over again but failed to find anything more.
There was still time left. Shiao Chen continued reading dozens of jade tablets. Still no clue at all. Since the pill was about to lose its efficacy, Shiao Chen had no other way but to go.
"I'm lucky enough to be able to figure out the root cause. It would be greedy of me if I still want a solution." Shiao Chen said in a self-mockery tone with a slightly bitter face.
However, he shook his head and picked himself up immediately, "I am now with in hand the rare cheating device of gold seal. It's not convincible that I would be trapped by this." He identified the direction by a glance, lifted himself up into the air, and disappeared soon without a trace.
"Sister Yuewu, you are the most diligent one among us. How come you stop cultivation today?" Liu Junru asked. Though with a little bit envy in her heart after seeing the admiration in the two brothers' eyes, she was not jealous at all, for Ji Yuewu deserved it.
"Well, you seem to be disturbed, Sister Ji. What's bothering you? How about speaking it out? We might be able to help you." Li Yuedu asked, showing his appropriate concern. The words were neither straight forward nor abrupt.
Duan Huaming agreed with him by nodding repeatedly.
In a daze for a second, Ji Yuewu recovered quickly and said lightly, "Nothing. Cultivation is laborious, and I just want a day off. I'm not preoccupied." Despite her words, she couldn't help thinking about Shiao Chen. It had been nearly three months, and as promised, it was time for him to come and return the Foundation Establishment Pill he borrowed.
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