Translator : Casualtranslator
~ Enjoy ~
After saying his speech, Ou Peng took out yet a slightly larger jade bottle.
The other people, fourth elder Shangguan and sixth elder Xu included, were stumped.
Fifth elder Liu smiled even more widely and asked, “Third brother, what are you doing? Surely you are not taking out the treasures one at a time to watch our reactions?”
This time, Ou Peng did not pass the bottle over to first elder Hu, instead, he placed it on the table beside his seat and looked at the puzzled expressions on the faces around him and said, “Apart from the ‘Qi strengthening pill’, ‘Bone reinforcing pill’ and ‘Longevity Extending pill’, we have also obtained a large amount of rare herbs from this trip. These are ‘Qi improving pills’ which are refined by our pharmacy hall’s hallmaster Bai through his research on their recipe in our libraries. The records in our library states that the efficacy of these ‘Qi improving pills’ is limited, and would differ depending on the constitution of the person who is consuming it. This bottle contains the first batch of pills refined, and there are nine of them inside.”
Upon hearing this, first elder Hu was overjoyed as he clapped his hands and said, “Good, with this pills, even if there is not enough ‘Qi strengthening pills’, the others will not lose out by too much. Furthermore, with its quantity, we can distribute these to our second generation disciples. Perhaps another top martial artist can emerge from our sect again.”
Ou Peng carried on and apologized, “Unfortunately, there is no substitute for the ‘Bone reinforcing pill’. If there is only one pill, our two junior brothers will have to choose between themselves.”
First elder Hu interrupted Ou Peng and said, “How can there be a perfect situation in this world? To have such an opportunity to increase our martial prowess in already rare in itself. Furthermore, external aids will always be inferior to power cultivated through one’s own means. I trust that our fellow brothers will not choose to go down such an unorthodox path right?”
Everyone felts as if his words had struck their hearts, and they calmed down quickly. They all thought in their hearts “Senior brother is right, the path of martial arts requires a solid training and efforts. If one pursues the path of external aids, then they will be leading themselves to ruin. Such a case is not uncommon in Jianghu. Even though it is important to increase one’s martial skills, our lives are also equally important.”
Ou Peng replied, “Senior brother’s words are too heavy. This is meant to be a joyous occasion; my fellow brothers should not take his words too close to heart, and repent this beneficial thing into a bad one.”
Fourth elder Shangguan also supported Ou Peng and said, “Eldest brother, even though we were drunk in our fantasy for a moment, you should not be too quick to pour cold water over us. Please do not worry. Also, if there is only one of this ‘Qi strengthening pill’, I propose that third brother should be the one to consume it. Firstly, his martial arts have already reached the level of large accomplishments. With the aid of this pill, he would achieve the level of mastery. Secondly, he is our sect master, so the whole sect will benefit if his martial skills improves. Thirdly, this pill was obtained by him. If he does not consume it, how would we have the face to consume it for him?”
Everyone agreed, and first elder Hu returned the jade bottle to Ou Peng.
Ou Peng did not dally to humble himself, and received the bottle straightaway.
With one hand holding on to the bottle, and another hand pinching its seal, Ou Peng pulled the seal off and with a ”Ka” sound, the bottle was opened. A thick refreshing scent wafted out. Ou Peng poured the contents of the pills into a jade box that was prepared beforehand, and there turned out to be three pills which he placed into three separate jade boxes. Ou Peng was happy when he saw the pills as he placed the jade boxes on the table and pushed them towards first elder Hu’s side, saying, “I thought that there would only be one pill, but now that two additional pills have appeared, would eldest senior brother please distribute them.”
First elder Hu smiled bitterly as he looked at the pills in the jade boxes and he shook his head saying “Old third, you have pushed a difficult problem to me. One pill is enough, how would I split three pills? In that case, one pill will be given to you as we have agreed earlier.”
Ou Peng took one of the boxes and kept it in his breast.
First elder Hu looked at second elder Li and fourth elder Shangguan and said, “Old second, old fourth, the both of you take one box each too.”
Second elder Li did not get up and he asked, “Eldest brother, what about you? Don’t you want one?”
First elder Hu laughed heartily and said, “The oldest will have to give way to the younger generation. I have been your eldest senior brother for so many years, so I should set a good example for you. I have already aged in years, and do not want it anymore. You all are people I have seen growing up, and your welfare is my priority now.”
Fourth elder added on, “Eldest brother, keep my share for yourself to use. It is only twenty years’ worth of effort; I still have the time to cultivate that much.”
Second elder Li agreed, “Yes, eldest brother. You are not young anymore, and it will be difficult to count on your own efforts to reach the top of your martial arts. Fourth brother and I still have sufficient time, so I feel that you should consume one of the two pills first.”
Ou Peng also wished to give up his pill, but he knew that it was necessary for the sect that he consume it, and he could not let his sect down for the sake of brotherhood, so he remained silent.
First elder Hu felt satisfied when he saw his brothers’ reactions. Even though they were not biological brothers, ever since their master took them into Piaomiao sect, they had grown up together like real siblings. As the eldest brother, he would lead them to train harder, and after they grew up, he continued to lead them to roam around Jianghu, thus earning their reputation of “Piaomiao six tigers” while shedding sweat and blood along the way. Despite having their own families and accomplishments now, they would still think of him under such temptation, and thus he felt that his painstaking efforts were worthwhile.
First elder Hu laughed aloud and said, “Do not say anymore, I have already decided. The benefits of you two consuming the pill will outweigh mine, so both of you should consume it instead.”
The whole discussion hall became still.
After a moment, second elder Li spoke up, “Eldest brother, I have suggestion. Would you care to listen?”
First elder Hu nodded, “Let’s hear it.”
Second elder Li continued, “As eldest brother knows, I mainly train in our Piaomiao sect’s Piaomiao seven swords, and its requirements on inner energy is not as demanding. My current achievement in the sword arts has already reached a bottleneck given my talent. Even with a breakthrough in inner energy, I would still need to gain enlightenment in the sword arts to see any impact in my martial skill. Therefore, I do not have a strong need for this pill, and would like to give it to eldest brother. What do you think?”
First elder Hu pondered deeply.
Then Ou Peng said, “Eldest brother, do we know if this Qi strengthening pill can be split and consumed separately? The records in our library have no mention of this.”
First elder Hu opened the jade boxes and welcomed the refreshing scent. He pressed it against his hands, and could feel that it was rather solid. The, he closed the box.
Second elder Li saw his actions and said, “Eldest brother, we better not take such a risk, I will consume the Qi improving pill instead. If the Qi strengthening pill cannot be split, then we would be wasting such a precious supplement.”
First elder Hu asked, “Old second, were you stating the truth just now? We have not trained in the swords, so do not lie to me.”
Second elder Li replied, “Of course.”
First elder Hu took out a small exquisite dagger from his breast, reopened the jade box, and said, “How could twenty years of training be compared to our brotherhood between us? Even though old second is willing to yield this benefit to eldest brother, how can eldest brother take away old second’s rare opportunity? I shall use our brotherhood to gamble on this pill. After all, what do I have to fear?”
Second elder Li’s eyes turned watery, with complex emotions in his body language as he walked over and said “Eldest brother…..”
The rest of the people all stood up and walked forward.
First elder Hu patted second elder Li’s shoulders, passed him the dagger and said, “Old second, your expertise is in the sword. It is your call now.”
Second elder Li received the dagger, felt the warmth on its handle, and looked at first elder Hu’s encouraging expression as he smiled and sliced towards the jade box.
Everyone only saw a streak of blade light, and as the dagger landed on the Qi strengthening pill, a line drew across right in its middle, otherwise seemingly unchanged. Ou Peng then hurriedly took out another jade box to store the halves of the pill separately.
Then, first elder Hu kept one of the boxes in his breast, and handed the other to second elder Li. Of course, the completely whole pill was given to fourth elder Shangguan.
After the Qi strengthening pills were distributed, it was now fifth elder Liu and sixth elder Xu’s turns to receive the bone reinforcing pill.
Because there were three pills in the Qi strengthening pill bottle, everyone was less anxious about the quantity of bone reinforcing pills. Still, first elder Hu asked both men on their opinions should there be only one pill.
Fifth elder Liu replied, “Of course it should be given to old sixth. He is the youngest, don’t we usually leave the best things to him?”
Sixth elder Xu countered, “It was like this before, but not his time. I have taken my fair share of benefits for half my life, so this pill should definitely be given to fifth brother.”
The two men pushed and pull, each not receding to use the pill for themselves.
Finally, fifth elder Liu said, “Eldest brother, just open the bottle now. Weren’t there three pills in the previous bottle? If there are also three pills in this one, that what is the point of all this banter?”
Thus, first elder Hu did not hesitate any longer and uncorked the bottle, pouring its contents into a jade box.
Indeed, there were also three pills.
Everyone sighed in relief.
First elder Hu put the three pills into separate jade boxes, and gave one box to fifth elder Liu and sixth elder Xu each, which they kept into their breast.
He then passed the last box back to Ou Peng and said, “Third junior brother, the last box is for you to determine who to give it to.”
Ou Peng nodded and accepted the jade box, and placed it on the table instead of keeping it into his breast.