After the birthday banquet ended and they finalized the pact with the treefather, Li Qiye and Madam Zi Yan left Allpine Mountain for the Alchemy Kingdom. Old Demon Tie Yi also accompanied them. Of course, he was anxious the whole time on this journey. If it wasn’t for Li Qiye dragging him along, perhaps he would have fled long ago.
After entering the kingdom’s territory, Tie Yi became even more cowardly. He was willing to drill underground along the way instead of showing his face.
Even the madam couldn’t help but ask after seeing Tie Yi’s demeanor: “Did you do something wrong? Why are you so scared? Don’t tell me you stole the kingdom’s defining treasures?”
“No, absolutely not.” Tie Yi immediately vowed: “I am a good person, a law-abiding cultivator, how could I possibly commit an evil act like stealing?”
Li Qiye leisurely glanced at him and said: “If you are a good person, then I am a saint.”
“Haha, Young Noble’s words are too hurtful.” Tie Yi laughed drily. Perhaps he could fool others, but not Li Qiye.
“Okay, stop skulking. Properly lead the way for me since we will need to go to many places for the materials you require.” Li Qiye told Tie Yi.
Tie Yi didn’t quip this time and immediately went to the front. This material gathering trip was extremely important to him, so he even put aside his fear of the Alchemy Kingdom.
The group traveled and gathered herbs along the way. Tie Yi required a few extremely rare ingredients, so eventually, Li Qiye released the Alchemy Fowl in order to hasten the process.
The Alchemy Fowl was a spiritual creature adept at finding medicines. It didn’t matter if the medicines were tens of thousands of miles away, the fowl could still pick up the fragrance of the medicines and instinctively find where they grew!
The Alchemy Kingdom was vast and situated above the Alchemy Vein, one of the three ancestral veins of the Stone Medicine World. With the help of the fowl, finding medicines became very easy. This gave the group ample time to make it to the alchemy conference.
It was more appropriate to call the Alchemy Kingdom an ancient lineage than an old country. Although it was named a kingdom, it had not ruled over this vast land for a very long time.
This was not to say that it lacked the ability to govern this territory, the kingdom simply didn’t try. The core of the kingdom was essentially focused in its ancestral ground.
Legend states that during the Desolate Expansion Era, the Alchemy Kingdom had ruled over all of this land and created an unparalleled kingdom that greatly prospered.
However, for some unknown reason, the Alchemy Kingdom gave up on governing this vast land during a particular generation of the Emperors Era. From then on, its imperial family became reclusive and rarely showed themselves.
The outside world was not privy to the cause, and neither were future generations! To sum it all up, from that point on, the Alchemy Kingdom became very mysterious, and its disciples rarely left their ancestral ground.
Though its direct branch, or the imperial family, gave up on ruling over this vast kingdom, the kingdom still belonged to them historically. No matter how many lineages and sects there were, they all pledged allegiance to the Alchemy Kingdom. Moreover, many of them were branches from the imperial family as their ancestors were inextricably linked together.
Despite the imperial family not ruling over the lands, the monarchs chosen by the Alchemy Kingdom still managed the various regions. After many years, no one had ever heard of a king daring to seize the land to form an independent country!
This was the formidable aspect of the kingdom, as well as its charm. One sect with three Immortal Emperors and four Alchemy Emperors — who in this world actually knew their true strength?
It was also built on the Alchemy Vein, one of three grand ancestral veins in this world! The legendary Alchemy Vein left behind many legends. One of them told that True Immortal Medicines were grown near it. Another told that there was a race with the bloodline of a True God living on it. One more told that there were secrets of True Immortals in that area…
Just this one grand vein was full of secrets. It spanned for millions of miles, so it was difficult to calculate all of its territories; after all, it spanned more than half of the Alchemy Realm! Thus, half of this realm belonged to the territory of the kingdom. On top of all of this, the kingdom’s extremely vast ancestral ground was built in a mountain pass that could reach the source of the grand vein.
Keep in mind that the Alchemy Vein was not just in name. Among this land of rolling hills were countless spirit medicines, and this was especially true for the mountain pass being used as the ancestral ground. Many people heard that many King Medicines grew there.
This vein was the sacred ground of spirit medicines. Someone had even calculated a statistic stating that seventy to eighty percent of all the spirit medicines in the Stone Medicine World had come from the Alchemy Vein. Just from this alone, one could easily understand just how many spirit medicines there were.
Because of all of this, the Alchemy Kingdom had the most precious of resources in the form of the grand vein. Both the vein and its vast territory left countless lineages and cultivators salivating with greed. However, despite their covetous intent, no one in the recent millions of years had dared to actually maneuver against the kingdom.
Without even mentioning territorial disputes, not many dared to steal spirit medicines from the kingdom unless they felt extremely bold.
Normally, due to its vast territory, the imperial family did not mind those who plucked medicines above the Alchemy Vein. As long as one was capable, then they were allowed to do so. However, spirit medicines on their ancestral ground were off limits. Moreover, one couldn’t even step inside this mountain pass!
Of course, many powerful cultivators — for generations — had been interested in the sceneries inside the mountain pass. They tried to sneak into the ancestral ground to steal King Medicines and Immortal Medicines.
However, for millions of years, very few were successful. The majority of these people couldn’t even take a step inside the mountain pass before they were killed. There was even a story about a God-Monarch dying miserably at the entrance!
It was precisely because of the imperial family’s strength that in later generations, fewer and fewer people dared to peep into this ancestral ground or had thoughts of stealing from it.
Naturally, there were always daredevils. In recent years, there was a person whose courage was as vast as the heavens known as Black Fox!
Black Fox appeared several thousand years ago. No one knew where this person came from or what his race was. Outsiders didn’t even know whether the person was male or female.
In the beginning, Black Fox did not attract much attention. Although this person stole the treasures of several countries and sects, it did not cause a big commotion. It wasn’t until one year later that the fox actually infiltrated the Radiant-Sea Sect and stole several treasures. This news caused quite a shock after it was spread!
At that time, the Radiant-Sea Sect even had a sky-high bounty for Black Fox. Many experts pursued Black Fox for the reward, but none of them had seen their true face.
After the successful heist, Black Fox rested for long periods of time before carrying out another heist, focusing their attention on the most powerful sects for their next move! The Kingdom of Cao, the Stone Insect Ravine, the Stony Peak Kingdom… All of these powerful lineages were robbed by him. The most sensational victim was the Heavenhoof Ravine, a sect with two emperors; one of their divine grasses was stolen by Black Fox!
The Beast Realm was nearly flipped over after this incident. The ravine released a heaven-shattering price for Black Fox’s head! However, no one ever succeeded.
Rumor has it that Black Fox tried to sneak into the Jianlong Clan as well. However, then came news that although the infiltration was successful, the fox couldn’t steal any treasures since they were found out by the clan. Nevertheless, the person still escaped unscathed. 1
After this failure on top of having made so many enemies, people thought that Black Fox would stop here.
In fact, the fox did not appear before the world again for another long period of time! However, an earth-shattering event happened later on.
Black Fox had snuck into the Alchemy Kingdom’s ancestral ground and stole a supreme immortal treasure from the imperial family. However, the fox was detected and surrounded by many ancestors of the kingdom!
The legend stated that Black Fox wanted to escape from the ancestral ground by using a peerless art, but this ended in failure. After being detained, the fox was eventually killed by the elders!
Afterward, there was even a rumor stating that the elders ground the fox’s bones to dust and spread it around the Alchemy Kingdom as a warning to those who had malicious intentions against them.
Regardless of whether this was true or not, one thing was certain — Black Fox never appeared again.
The fox became a cautionary tale for many experts who coveted the kingdom’s ancestral ground. If the person who could escape from the Jianlong Clan and also stole a treasure from the ravine died in the Alchemy Kingdom, then those who wanted to try better reflect on their own abilities first.
1. This whole passage is really frustrating when the sex is unknown. Chinese has a singular gender-neutral pronoun, but we don’t have that in English.