Chapter 26: Medicinal Student
just as han li became convinced that the rain would be endless, the sun finally rose into the sky and cleared away the clouds.
han li had already discovered the secret of the bottle half a month ago, and thus he was naturally impatient. on that clear night sky, han li saw once more the miracle from 4 years ago. little by little, small orbs of light encircled the bottle before merging into one big sphere.
upon seeing this miracle once more, han li raised his head excitedly. it seemed the bottle was usable more than just one time. it could repeatedly regenerate the droplet of mysterious liquid as long as there was moonlight!
after another seven days of waiting, the mysterious droplet of liquid finally formed. when han li saw the contents of the bottle, he was tremendously happy and excited. now that he knew that he had a steady stream of precious herbs, he would no longer have to worry about insufficient resources.
the value of an medicinal herb was determined by its age. the older the medicinal herb was, the more precious it would be as its medicinal effects would grow more potent with age. at the same time, an ingredient that was more precious would naturally be harder to find. some ingredients could only be found in the depths of the forest or hanging from sheer cliffs. for those who didn’t risk their lives, there was no way that they would be able to find these precious ingredients.
although there were several pharmacies that specialized in cultivating these rare herbs, these herbs were generally harvested so quickly in order to satisfy the large demand that they never got a chance to grow very large. for that reason, most weren’t stupid enough to try and cultivate herbs for a long period of time and instead chose to harvest them as soon as possible.
only the wealthy families could afford to grow and cultivate rare herbs for stockpiling in the case of a crisis. since the herbs were not only rare strains but were also planted for a long time, their effectiveness was many times greater than that of common herbs. there wasn’t a need for a specialist to cultivate the plants either! not only did these families pass on their money from generation to generation, the herbs they had spent so much time on would be passed down as well. as a result, time was not an issue for these families. for centuries, these herbs would be cultivated in this way. in the case of both money and rare herbs, common people had no access to such a stockpile.
occasionally, rare ingredients would appear briefly on the market, only to be purchased by the richer families. this slowly increased the prices of herbs and ingredients to the point that some of the herbs had been labeled as priceless.
han li hadn’t been too optimistic about elder mo’s ability to procure the precious herbs needed for his cultivation. but now, there was no need for him to worry. with this mysterious bottle, he would be able to create many ingredients in a short amount of time.
with a strange feeling in his heart, han li had been experimenting with the mysterious droplet of liquid on herbal ingredients for the past 10 days.
one time, he diluted the green liquid and sprayed it on some herbs. the result after two days was that the plant effectively grew two years’ worth. this was much better than the original product, and with this experiment, han li had learned an important rule.
on the next experiment, han li did not bother to dilute the jade green droplet, letting a drop of the green liquid fall onto a stalk of ginseng. on the second day, han li had unexpectedly seen that the ginseng became virtually indistinguishable from wild hundred year-old ginseng. this experiment made han li happier than ever, not because he now owned a rare ingredient, but because he had confirmed the usage of the mysterious droplet of liquid.
afterward, han li decided to set aside some of the green liquid for experimentation, while the rest would be placed in other containers like porcelain, jade bottles, and even silver bottles. however, he soon discovered that none of the bottles were able to contain the liquid for longer than a minute. after the liquid was taken out from the bottle, it needed to be used within a minute. otherwise, it would slowly disappear without a trace. even the diluted form of the liquid had the same result, albeit it could last for a longer amount of time. even if other liquids were mixed together, they would disappear without a trace soon afterward.
after many attempts, han li gave up on storing the liquid in any other container. it appeared that he wouldn’t be able to stockpile this mysterious liquid. thus, han li could only proceed to test the herbal aging properties of the green liquid.
han li brought out a bundle of three crow grass and used the liquid on it. almost immediately, it had turned into a hundred year-old yellow colored three crow grass. just from a single drop of the liquid, its age would increase by 100 years!
after seeing such an effect, han li made extensive use of the liquid for the next two months. every time he was able to acquire more liquid within this bottle, he would drip it onto this strand of three crow grass. it gradually turned from a yellow color to a yellowy black color. in the end, it turned jet black which was the result of it successfully aging to become a thousand year-old three crow grass.
after the success of this particular experiment, it would appear that with patience, the three crow grass would be able to be constantly aged and thus improved. however, there wasn’t much point to this. he was already satisfied to know that he was able to deliberately harness the liquid’s effect. besides, he didn’t need such ancient ingredients; just about a hundred years old would be enough for him.
after this long series of experimentation, han li finally decided to take a break. it came to his attention that elder mo had been away from the mountain for quite a long time now.
right now, han li was holding the thousand year-old three crow grass in his hand while he sat back on his bed with a lackadaisical expression.
his eyes were looking at the three crow grass as if he was studying it. but in reality, if one were to look at the disorderly eyes of han li, they would know that he wasn’t paying attention to the three crow grass at all. instead, he was staring off into the sky, thinking of everything else.
he no longer had the feeling of joy from when he first created this 1000-year old three crow grass. instead, he was now thinking about the dangers this little bottle could bring to him, and what precautions he should take.
han li had seen time and time again in the books of elder mo’s library about people who suffered terrible fates as a result of acquiring a precious treasure. this bottle in his hand was definitely a precious treasure. if someone else were to discover the existence of this bottle, then he doubted that he would live to see the next day. for example, if a hall leader was to find out, then there was no way they would let this go. they would stop at nothing to seize the treasure and kill the owner, before letting anyone else find out.
“i cannot tell anyone of this bottle, and i must be careful of how i use it. the way this bottle collected light was far too noticeable and could easily be discovered by anyone watching,” han li thought to himself. he had to keep his mouth shut about this in order to ensure no one would be able to find out his secret.
“however, i am in a position where i need to use herbs to cultivate. if i don’t use this bottle, it would be a terrible waste. i must find a way to get the best of both worlds.” he thought about his cultivation needs for a moment with some sadness. it went without saying that his cultivation was the top priority. even doctor mo was aware that han li had barely made any progress in the past few years.