Ancient Strengthening Technique - Chapter 566-567
566 - Arrival At The Jade Sea Country, Drunken Immortal Restaurant, Nian Feng
"Alright. Since this incident has already involved the Di Clan, it'd naturally be endless. It's about time you temper yourself. Follow your Third Uncle to the mountain valley and learn through experience."
The Jade Sea Country!
After a week, Qing Shui flew into the Jade Sea Country. The moment he entered the Jade Sea Country, he landed the Fire Bird on the 'Sky Platform' of the city.
The 'Sky Platform' was the place where big carriages and flying beasts transited. Since it was too crowded in other places and it was very easy to cause a traffic jam, this place was built specially for parking big carriages and flying beasts.
"Sir, where are you headed to?" The voice of the coachman rang out clearly after Qing Shui climbed up onto a beast carriage.
"Take me to the best inn nearby!" Qing Shui answered after thinking for a moment.
"Aye!" The beast carriage quickly sped off!
Qing Shui gave the coachman an ingot of silver before he climbed up the carriage. At least the coachman was honest, the beast carriage galloped for almost an hour before coming to a halt.
"Sir, this is the Drunken Immortal Inn. It's considered the best inn in this area." The coachman introduced the place to Qing Shui politely.
Qing Shui had given the coachman a nod as a silent approval for him to leave and to express his satisfaction about the place that the coachman had found.
A majestic inn stood before him in its glorious splendor. The tallest buildings in the World of Nine Continents were most often this kind of inn that had rooms and restaurants.
The inn spanned over a large area, and although it was tall, it only had about ten floors. Qing Shui had always thought that the Earthly Paradise in the Canglang Country was the best, but now he thought that it was slightly inferior to this 'Drunk Immortal Inn'.
Eight gorgeous and se*ily dressed waitresses stood at the entrance. They were wearing clothes with the same design. They smiled at the people who were coming and going while greeting some of them from time to time.
Qing Shui chuckled. It seemed like no matter which era it was, self-taught techniques like these would emerge. Inns would basically use the same methods to attract customers.
He saw some people stuffing a silver note into the deep cleavage of the waitresses when they went in. Qing Shui rubbed his nose. Wasn't this kind of thing old-fashioned?
There was an endless stream of horse and carriages at the front entrance of the 'Drunken Immortal Inn'. The people who visited this place were rarely commoners, but rich tycoons or cultivators that were armed with weapons.
Due to the fact that martial arts were worshiped in the World of the Nine Continents, the positions of even poor cultivators were not inferior to those of businessmen. This is because a truly rich tycoon was backed up by powerful martial forces.
The eight ladies dressed in their uniforms bowed and clearly greeted Qing Shui when he reached the entrance.
This was the first time Qing Shui had experienced such an enjoyable treatment. He looked at the few youthful and beautiful ladies and he felt his mood being greatly lifted. He pulled out a few silver dollar notes and stuffed them in between those large bosoms like the others had done, as he enjoyed the act of a rich man.
Qing Shui didn't think any less of these people. Perhaps it was because he had spent a long time in the World of the Nine Continents and had gotten used to the open existence of brothels, but he didn't feel that they had a lowly status. Prostitutes were their own breadwinners and were mentally stronger than bandits who robbed. Furthermore, most of them were forced into this position by circumstances.
Besides, he felt that it was essential to have all kinds of people in this vast world. The world was only splendid and interesting because it was made up by a diversity of people.
Everyone thought lowly of prostitutes, but those patrons and people who had forced the prostitutes were actually more lowly than them.
No harm was done if she was willing!
Qing Shui had no idea if those waitresses were that kind of prostitutes. But judging from what he had observed, they seemed to be in a somewhat better situation than that. The guests only copped a feel at most!
Qing Shui found himself in a grand lobby as soon as he entered the 'Drunken Immortal Inn'. Many waitresses like those at the entrance stood there. They'd step forward to entertain the guests who came in.
"Sir, are you here to enjoy a meal or have a rest?" A tall and slender young woman came forward to Qing Shui with a smile on her face.
"Get me a room first. As for the meal, I will eat at the lobby later," Qing Shui replied after thinking.
"Sure, please follow me!"
The woman led the way and Qing Shui followed behind her, admiring how her hips swayed alluringly as she walked. As expected of the best inn, even the quality and appearance of their waitresses were top notch.
"Sir, the rooms below the fifth floor are all occupied. Do you prefer to stay on the fifth floor or above the fifth floor?" The woman turned her head around and inquired.
"I'd like the highest floor!" Qing Shui replied after pondering for a moment.
"I'm terribly sorry, sir. The highest floor is not open to the public," the woman apologetically informed him.
"Find me a room one floor below the highest floor then!" He hadn't expected that the highest floor was not open to the public. He had wanted to stay on the highest floor so he could enjoy the night scenery whenever he was free and could also get a wider view.
The woman slowly led Qing Shui upstairs. Watching the woman slowly going up the beautiful staircase reminded him of a familiar scene where he was also following behind a woman up a staircase.
The wonderful scene from that time replayed in Qing Shui's mind. He could still remember the soft and tender sensations that he felt in his hands. But everything felt very distant now. Only that willful and delicate face clearly lingered in his mind.
When he remembered the stubbornness that she had shown when they parted ways, he felt as if his heart was being pricked by a needle. He had given her hope, but then destroyed that hope with his own hands...
Qing Shui had always been passive in affections and was very rarely initiative. He was only considered proactive when it came to Shi Qingzhuang. He knew that it was because of the circumstances of their meeting and on top of that, Shi Qingzhuang was the very first woman who had touched his heart when he saw her at the Qing Residence a long time ago. The adoration he had for her had no other intentions in it.
"I'll go with the flow!" Qing Shui sighed inwardly.
Without realizing it, they had reached the ninth floor. There were way fewer people here compared to the earlier floors. There was a huge living room right in the middle with a few gorgeous rectangular tables and chairs neatly arranged. A few groups of people were there enjoying their meal or wine.
The corridor surrounded the room in the shape resembling something like 回. This was the World of the Nine Continent's architectural style. Perhaps because of the height, Qing Shui could tell with his spiritual sense that the guests staying above the fifth floor were all cultivators.
"Sir, what do you think of this room?" The woman didn't talk much, but her every word was on point. He presumed that even bad tempered or unpleasant guests would hardly feel dissatisfied in her service. Besides, this woman was quite a beauty.
Qing Shui stood at the entrance and observed the room. He could see a fully furnished small living room that looked like it would be a cozy home. There was also a bedroom, a kitchen, and a bathroom. However, the kitchens here were most likely just decorations because you could eat anything here. People who could stay here would surely be able to afford to order whatever they wanted to eat on the menu.
"I'll take this room then. Bring me a few of the signature dishes here!" Qing Shui gave the woman a smile and then walked towards the table on the side.
Qing Shui took a seat at a table near the corridor and observed the people around him. There were only less than twenty people scattered around the room. Perhaps this was because it wasn't lunch time yet.
"Have you guys heard that a lot of treasure beasts have been appearing at the Jade Sea?"
Just when Qing Shui was getting bored, a very interesting story rang out from another table. This was the first time he had heard of treasure beasts…...
"Treasure beasts? What treasure beasts? It's not surprising that there's a treasure beast in the vast Jade Sea. There has always been a rumor about it over the past few years," a middle aged guy who was sitting at one side asked. He seemed to be slightly interested in this topic.
"It's different this time. Many people saw it. It was a Crystal Lion," a youth spoke up for the first time.
"Crystal Lion? What is that?
"I'm not too sure myself. That time, I saw a little azure lion with a crystal-like body. It was only about the size of a fist and its entire body was covered in scales. I heard a lot of people say that it was a Crystal Lion, a type of treasure beast that could secrete a crystal from its body. According to them, this item was very valuable. It was a priceless treasure……"
Qing Shui eavesdropped with a frown. He had once again picked up news about the Jade Sea. The Jade Sea was his main objective for coming to the Jade Sea Country. It seemed like he had to make haste to the Jade Sea.
Just then, the waitress from earlier came over carrying a large tray that was wrapped in a brocade fabric. "Sir, these are the Jade Sea specialty dishes. We have steamed conch, braised Jade Whitefish, Five Spices Twin-headed Turtle meat……"
"Is the Jade Sea very vast?" Qing Shui felt like he had just asked a very childish question.
The woman pursed her lips up in a smile. "Yes, it's boundlessly vast."
"Are these aquatic products caught by yourselves somewhere or do you actually buy these from some sellers who are specialized in this industry?" Qing Shui motioned for the woman to take a seat.
"I shall remain standing as it's a rule," the woman smiled.
Qing Shui gave her a smile and didn't insist any further!
"It's not easy to catch aquatic products from the Jade Sea unless you are a veteran hunter. Most inns purchase these from those professional hunters, unless they have their own team of hunters. Fortunately, our inn has their own dedicated team, so you can rest easy, sir."
Qing Shui smiled. This woman was really dedicated to her work. Even in the process of explaining, she didn't forget to advertise for the Drunken Immortal Inn!
"Is the Jade Sea dangerous?"
"Yes, it can be. But it is usually not dangerous under normal circumstances, unless you venture into the deep sea region. It is said that some especially ferocious water beasts dwell there."
Qing Shui liked the way the woman talked. Her appearance, mannerism, and virtue were all top notch. It was as if there was an invisible cordial air surrounding her. He felt extremely relaxed talking to her. She was your typical girl-next-door, which Qing Shui liked the most in his previous life.
"Since this inn is known as the Drunken Immortal Inn, how about serving the best wine you have?" Qing Shui laughed.
"No problem at all!"
The woman nodded her head with a smile and left!
When the wine was served, Qing Shui discovered that the wine was named the 'Drunken Immortal Wine'. He immediately took a sip and thought that it was quite delicious.
It was aromatic, rich but not overwhelmingly so. Just a taste thoroughly refreshed him from inside out. However, this wine had a cold-attribute. Although it could actually strengthen the drinker's constitution, its effects were neutralized by this cold-attribute. So the Drunken Immortal Wine was nothing more than just a delicious wine without any benefits.
"Is your boss around? I would like to discuss something with him about the wine," Qing Shui asked after thinking for a moment.
He had a feeling that the person who could establish the Drunken Immortal Inn was definitely not an ordinary person. He would either be someone from a big clan or a local tyrant. The moment he arrived at the Jade Sea Country, he had felt the need to get acquainted with some important people.
The woman frowned slightly. She looked at Qing Shui as if she didn't know what to do!
Qing Shui realized the reason after thinking a bit. If she had to bring anyone who said they wanted to meet her boss, then her boss would be really busy. So normally if there was nothing important, the boss was not to be bothered.
Qing Shui smiled at the woman. "Tell him that someone can help him get rid of the cold-attribute in this wine and would like to meet him!"
The woman nodded happily and left after hearing Qing Shui's words!
After fifteen minutes, the woman from earlier returned with a young man. The man looked like he was in his thirties. He was plainly dressed, yet appeared to be very refined. He had a very dashing appearance and was a very standard handsome man.
"The boss of this Drunken Immortal Inn was this young?"
"Hello, I am Nian Feng, the manager of this inn. May I know your name, sir? How about we go upstairs and have a chat?" The man looked at Qing Shui with a smile as he went straight to the point.
"Sure. I am Qing Shui, and you may call me that!"
"Then you may call me Nian Feng!"
"Kewei, ask the kitchen to prepare a few dishes!"
Nian Feng and Qing Shui walked side by side to the highest floor. "Brother Qing Shui, I'm guessing that you are not a local."
"That's right. I have just arrived at the Jade Sea Country today. This is considered my first stop, so I feel like it's fate that we met each other." Qing Shui smiled.
"That's right, I feel the same too. To be able to meet and exchange a word with someone among the sea of people could be considered a great fate itself. Even to be able to just see someone is also considered fate since you can't really see that many people over your lifetime. Maybe a hundred thousand? Two hundred thousand?"
Nian Feng laughed lightly, as a trace of sadness could be heard from the tone of his voice. It was a pity that Qing Shui didn't continue this line of conversation but he instead changed the topic. "Brother Nian Feng, it must not have been easy to manage an inn!"
"It's still alright. It gets a little busy so I have less time to cultivate!" Nian Feng laughed embarrassedly, perhaps because he recalled how emotional he was just now.
The two of them arrived on the highest floor very soon. There wasn't anyone else there. A big field entered into Qing Shui's field of vision and he immediately knew that it was a place for cultivation.
They walked into a very big living room. Nian Feng asked him to take a seat on the sofa as he sat across him.
"Brother Qing Shui, can you really get rid of the cold-attribute in this wine?" Nian Feng asked without beating around the bushes.
Just then, two waitresses came in with a tray of wine and dishes. They skillfully placed them on the tea table in order and then slowly took their leave. The wine served was still the Drunken Immortal Wine that he had just now, but Qing Shui could tell that it was of a higher grade.
The dishes was different and obviously not on the same level as just now. Their flavor and quality were way better.
"I have another type of wine with me, would you like to have a taste?" Qing Shui took out a jar of Tiger Bone Liquor!
He immediately opened it and poured out two glasses. The sweet fragrance of the wine was even more tempting than the intoxicating fragrance of the wine, but it was very similar in flavor to this Drunken Immortal wine.
Nian Feng picked up a glass and looked at Qing Shui in amazement!
Qing Shui gave him a nod as he picked up the other glass from the table and downed the content in one gulp!
Nian Feng smiled and gave him a nod. His smile was very sincere as he similarly downed the content of the glass in one gulp. After that, he stared at Qing Shui dumbfoundedly as amazement filled his eyes.
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567 - Jade Sea, Crystal Lion, Priceless Crystal Treasure
This situation was within Qing Shui's expectations because the taste of the Drunken Immortal Wine and the Tiger Bone Liquor were exactly the same. It was just that the Cold Qi in the Drunken Immortal Wine canceled out the original effect of increasing the body's constitution, and the Tiger Bone Liquor was very nourishing. Although the taste was the same but the price and the impact would be very different. Just this fact alone, If Qing Shui opened a restaurant across the Drunken Immortal Inn, he could openly squash the Drunken Immortal Inn out of business.
"Sire, Why did you help me? I know the value of this thing, please enlighten me."
At this moment, the way Nian Feng addressed Qing Shui changed to Sire, this increased Qing Shui's good will towards him. Had he continued to address Qing Shui as brother, Qing Shui might have had a very different opinion of him.
Most importantly, Qing Shui saw his expressions, this was a smart man, he knew what to do. The things that would be yours, even without asking for it, it will come to you. However, the things you are fated to not have, no matter how hard you try, it will not be yours.
"Like you said, it is fate. Brother Nian Feng, I tried this Drunken Immortal Wine, and I have to say that it is very coincidental that the recipe for these two wines are very similar. The ingredients in my wine are some 1,000 years Tiger Bone and Astral Fire Grass. However, one of the ingredients in the Drunken Immortal Wine should be the one of the essential Cold Dew, a cold attributed herb, furthermore, if this herb was not used, the quality of the wine would be severely impacted. Here, take this recipe!"
Qing Shui directly gave the recipe for the Tiger Bone Liquor to him, Nian Feng received it with a flurry. After all Qing Shui had already revealed the most important components, he had to accept this goodwill and he was happy to accept it.
"Brother Qing Shui, stay here for two days, I will prepare some things for you!" Nian Feng said seriously.
"Brother Nian Feng does not wish to be friends with me?" Qing Shui smiled and looked at Nian Feng.
"Who says so, being friends with you is more than I can ask for. However, Qing Shui, your Tiger Bone Liquor Recipe would be priceless to anyone. It is even more so to me, how can I just take it for free?"
"Like you said, we are friends and brothers. Money does not matter between us. I am going to be staying in the Jade Sea country for some time, I may have to rely on brother Nian Feng." Qing Shui smiled.
"That's nothing, if brother Qing Shui needs any help just say a word. In this area, I, Nian Feng, can be considered to be of influence." Nian Feng was especially serious when he said this.
The endless expanse of jade green seawater looked especially aesthetically pleasing, and there was a faint Spiritual Qi flowing in the air. Around the beach, there were many villas, but the beach separated them from the sea by at least 5 kilometers.
There was no lack of people on the beach, especially during summer. Regardless of whether it was day or night, there would be a crowd of people moving together. However, many of them were either hunters or the descendants of rich families.
The rich descendants usually brought women here to relax and chase skirts, after all, the view and mood here were pretty good. The rest were people seeking treasures.
There were plenty of treasures in the sea, there was also millions of species of living creatures there as well. There could be some precious creatures with medicinal properties, rare fishes, or even special treasured stones……
The sun had already risen up, Qing Shui stood at the beach. The Fire Bird flew for half a night to arrive at the Jade Sea. The number of people on the beach was not little, and there were plenty of people of both genders. However, there was a lack of people wearing clothes that exposed a lot of skin.
The vast seawater that seemed like bejeweled nectar made Qing Shui feel that it was inconceivable. Looking at the surface of the sea, there were many small boats, and occasionally there was the laughter of some men and women.
Many of the people wore something similar to full body swimsuits, and swam around freely. Only a portion of children would be playing around in the water naked.
The biggest difference from the beach in his previous life was that the Xiantian cultivators could walk on water, although they had to use a lot of Xiantian Qi. Martial King cultivators could walk on the surface of the sea for a whole day without any problems.
Qing Shui wanted to see that Crystal Lion as well as see what rare or strange things there were in this Jade Sea!
Looking at the sea was an experience, and standing at the seaside could raise one's horizons. It could also raise a person's mood, allowing one to be carefree. Climbing a mountain and looking at the view from the top also had the same effects, thus many people enjoyed looking at the sea or climbing mountains.
"Do you think that the Crystal Lion will appear? I hear that just a single Crystal Lion would be able to exchanged for a villa here." A voice traveled to Qing Shui's ears.
When he turned his head, he saw a few youths near him, four males and two females. They seemed to be about 25 or 26 years old, around the same age as Qing Shui.
Qing Shui felt that they did not look like those rich descendants but he did not find it strange, there were not that many rich descendants. When Qing Shui looked around, he felt that these people should be from a regular family.
"Tian Yuan, you fool, how could the Crystal Lion appear at the seaside? I hear that the nearest appearance was 5 kilometers away from shore, you will never see it at this seaside." one of the other youths faced and told him.
"Sister Lan Tong, the Jade Sea is so big, I hear that there are only a few hundred Crystal Lions, where are we going to find one?" Tian Yuan turned his head and asked a girl with long hair.
"The girl looked at the sun in the sky: "prepare a small boat and fishing nets!"
Qing Shui had only just noticed this girl, her figure was pretty good. She was exquisite and delicate, her skin was white as snow, and her eyes were black and bright. She had dense long eyebrows, her nose was straight, small and delicate. The way her lips stuck out a little seemed to give her a special character.
His heart was moved, Qing Shui felt that this girl definitely knew where the Crystal Lions would appear!
"Hi, can I join your group?" Qing Shui walked over and asked.
The four boys and the two girls looked strangely at Qing Shui, especially that sister Lan Tong. She squinted her bright black eyes and looked at Qing Shui.
The appearances of the few men were pretty good, they seemed strong, tall and sturdy. At this moment, some of them were staring at Qing Shui.
"I do not have any ill intentions, I just want to partner up. I can take care of you. My cultivation should be higher than yours by a little, if anything happens, I can help out." Qing Shui smiled, maybe they would agree to let him accompany them if he used this bargaining chip.
Lan Tong Looked at Qing Shui for a while before she smiled: "Welcome to the team!"
Qing Shui was stunned for a moment, originally this girl could only be considered beautiful, but when she smiled, Qing Shui felt as if a hundred flowers blossomed at the same time. This was a unique and comforting feeling.
"It is almost time, let's go!" After a while, the girl told the crowd.
Earlier, Qing Shui had found out that they were the exploration group of the Jade Sea Country, and that they sought treasures and hunted for a living. Amongst the two girls, the one that was the leader was Lan Tong, and the other was Ya Rong.
Of the four boys, one was Tian Yuan, and the one who called Tian Yuan a fool was Tie Dong. The remaining two were brothers, the older one was Da Wu, and the younger one was Xiao Wu, their names were quite strange.
[TL notes: Da Wu and Xiao Wu in Chinese means big five and small five, the names could be strange because the do not share a family name but a given name.]
Five people rode on a small boat, tied behind the small boat was another small boat used as a backup! They rowed slowly into the water. At the same time, there were many other small boats headed into the deep water regions.
"Sis Lan Tong, the Crystal Lion is only the size of a palm, but I hear that it is also very poisonous, is that true?" said Tian Yuan naively as he displayed his curious spirit.
"The body of the Crystal Lion is not poisonous, but it creates a kind of crystal, this crystal is very precious. This crystal alone is useless but when combined with poison, it can raise the effect of the poison by onefold, sometimes even manyfold. When combined with medicine, it also has a similar effect of increasing the potency. It is a true treasure of the heavens and the earth. I hear that some special medicinal pellets can be combined with this crystal, gaining a similar increase in effects, thus this crystal is priceless. It is a pity that a Crystal Lion can only produce one crystal the size of the pinky every 500 years. Thus, the crystal is much more valuable than the Crystal Lion itself."
At this moment, Qing Shui discovered that this girl was very well learned, she seemed to know a lot of things. This was what his intuition and the air she emitted told him.
Lan Tong occasionally looked at the sky, then directed Tian Yuan, Da Wu, and Xiao Wu to row the boat in a certain direction. At the same time, Qing Shui realized that there were many people in the distance doing similar things.
Now, Qing Shui finally knew why Lan Tong frequently looked at the sun. It was because that it was said that the Crystal Lion would appear in the area that the sun lit up late in the morning. However, Qing Shui saw that the area lit up by the sun was not small, good thing it was not noon, or else there would be sunlight everywhere, they would not even know where to look.
A long and narrow beam of sunlight extended into the deep sea region. Although it was described as narrow, its width was not small, thus many small boats continuously moved back and forth within it.
There were only a few hundred Crystal Lions in such a wide area. In order to meet one, it would require luck. In addition, although the Crystal Lion was not a demonic beast, it could travel very fast in water. It was very smart, had a mouthful of sharp teeth, and legends said that a regular treasured sword would not be able to break through its defense but it could bite it into scraps. Thus, when regular demonic beasts ate it, it would eventually bite its way out of the demonic beast's stomach. It had a strong life force, it ate meat, and it was amphibious, however, it stayed in water most of the time. It was not a demonic beast yet regular demonic beasts feared this tiny creature.
Lan Tong and the others came to catch the Crystal Lion so that they could exchange it for some wealth or cultivation resources. However, with their strength, they should not be able to capture any Crystal Lions. However, Lan Tong had a special net passed down from her ancestors. It was unknown what it was made from, but the threads were silvery white, abnormally strong, and had a very sticky characteristic. It was a good treasure to have when fishing for anything.
However, they did not expect to have an additional Qing Shui!
The Crystal Lion was precious but not many people could wait for 500 years, thus they did not set their hearts on capturing a Crystal Lion, unless it was one that was about to produce a crystal.
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