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Chapter 107: Huangfu Ming
Reluctant to put off his schedule any longer, Lu Yunhe took his leave, leaving Lin Jin to stand in a corner alone as he watched Mr. Huangfu Ming teach his cla.s.s.
Since he had nothing better to do, Lin Jin tuned in to the lecture as well.
It was a topic on the application of ‘spirit energy’.
The lecture content was too profound that Lin Jin only got a subtle gist of it after listening for a bit. A rough explanation of the cla.s.s would be that they were learning how to maximize the utilization of limited spirit energy when casting spells.
Simply put, it was to tap into a new resource and economize on expenditure.
It had the same concept as managing the household expenditure thriftily. As a human’s spirit energy was limited, the main point of this lecture was to teach how one could reap the biggest value by utilizing this limited spirit energy.
In different households, some could survive several days with just one tael; some might not even make it through the day with the same amount.
Mr. Huangfu spoke profoundly, proving that he was genuinely knowledgeable and capable. Engrossed in his lecture, it felt to Lin Jin as if time itself had stopped for him.
It took almost an hour for the lecture to finish.
Lin Jin was still unsatiated after that.
Huangfu Ming added, “Remember, since the ancient era of immortals has fallen, there is barely any spirit energy left in our world. We can no longer discover traces of immortals, but cultivation must go on with what limited spirit energies we have in our bodies. Let me quiz you on what you’ve previously learned. Who knows how spirit energy is measure today?”
It was clearly a rather simple question so the students began competing to answer.
Huangfu Ming pointed to a student. That person got up and performed a salute before answering, “Veins are like rivers and the blood flowing in them carries our spirit energy. During ancient times, spirit energy was measured by spirit barrels, and after that, ‘stone’ was used as a metric for calculation. The word ‘stone’ comes from the spirit stone levitation method. Presented with stones of fixed sizes and weight, the number of stones a person can levitate simultaneously determines the volume of that person’s spirit energy. It is a method still in use to this day.”
That was it.
Huangfu Ming nodded, rather satisfied with the answer.
“We’ll take a short break.”
Having said that, Huangfu Ming turned to Lin Jin.
Knowing that it was his turn, Lin Jin stepped forward.
“Greetings, Mr. Huangfu. My name is Lin Jin,” Lin Jin greeted courteously.
And to his surprise, Huangfu Ming lifted his hands and returned his greeting.
“Greetings, Appraiser Lin. I am Huangfu Ming!”
Now that Lin Jin was a Rank 2 beast appraiser, he was on the same level as w.a.n.g Ji from before in terms of a beast appraiser’s status so this propelled Huangfu Ming to return his greeting.
Just like Lu Yunhe had said, Mr. Huangfu was very particular about the rules. He wouldn’t put on airs just because he was older or that Lin Jin had a favor to ask of him.
Lin Jin saw this as a good thing.
At least the man dealt with matters on their merits. If he managed to persuade Mr. Huangfu, his hope of getting a recommendation would come true.
“Yunhe has told me about your request. However, there is something I don’t understand. Appraiser Lin, you’re already a Rank 2 beast appraiser. With your achievements, you must already be specialized in your field and it would only make sense to continue down the path of beast appraising. Why do you want to join the Friar a.s.sociation?” Huangfu Ming inquired.
The man was clearly concerned by this.
Of course, Lin Jin would never say it was for the dragon blood pill. Lu Yunhe had repeatedly urged him to never let it slip because if Huangfu Ming knew, he would definitely reject recommending Lin Jin.
Lu Yunhe had suggested to him another answer that Lin Jin felt plausible as well.
“The reason I’m here is that I’ve reached a bottleneck in my quest to further my research in beast appraising. What the Friar a.s.sociation teaches is the way to strengthen pet beasts so I was hoping to increase my knowledge to supplement my research,” Lin Jin lied through his teeth and managed to sound sincere nonetheless.
Huangfu Ming nodded in realization.
“That’s true. I’ve also read a few books on beast appraising and found out how well both of these studies work together. Yunhe is my disciple, and since this is a request from him, I find it hard to refuse. However, before I recommend you into the a.s.sociation, I still have to a.s.sess you according to the rules.” Sure enough, Huangfu Ming didn’t make things hard for Lin Jin but was adamant about following the rules instead, just like Lu Yunhe had said.
However, this a.s.sessment wouldn’t be an easy one.
And that was only natural. After all, it was an exceptional referral. If the individual wasn’t impressive, why should they make an exception?
“In the normal entrance exams, the first a.s.sessment is stone levitation. ‘Stone’ is the metric of our spiritual energy and a candidate has to reach four stones because the ability to perform spells is crucial. Appraiser Lin, for a recommendation into the a.s.sociation, you have to achieve six stones to pa.s.s.” Huangfu Ming instructed to have the spirit levitation stones brought over.
The spirit levitation stones were magnet.i.tes the size of a human fist. With a weight similar to metal, it was rather heavy and twelve of them were brought over.
In a normal a.s.sessment, one set consisted of twelve stones.
For a newbie, one set of spirit levitation stones was enough. Once a person successfully becomes a member of the Friar a.s.sociation, they were allowed access to the ‘Levitation Stone Tower’ to a.s.sess their spirit energy. The highest number of spirit levitation stones supported in the tower was seventy-two, six sets in total.
Seeing how someone was about to have their spirit energy measured, quite a few of the a.s.sociation’s disciples hovered around to watch.
Before Huangfu Ming could finish, Lin Jin interrupted, “Mr. Huangfu, this is the Friar a.s.sociation so you can just call me Lin Jin.”
After pondering slightly, Huangfu Ming nodded. “Lin Jin, do you know how to invoke the spirit levitation stone?”
Lin Jin shook his head.
“Let me teach you. It’s quite a simple invocation.”
Huangfu Ming recited an incantation.
And just like he had said, the invocation was very simple. After all, it was a spell to channel the spirit energy inside the caster’s body. Since Lin Jin already had some foundation, he grasped it easily.
“Then let’s begin the spirit energy a.s.sessment.” Huangfu Ming pointed to the set of spirit levitation stones on the ground.
This a.s.sessment required the candidate to channel their spirit energy and see how many spirit levitation stones they could levitate at the same time. For Lin Jin to enter the a.s.sociation, he had to at least achieve six stones in spirit energy.
The disciples around began discussing among themselves quietly.
“How many stones do you guys think this person can achieve?”
“I heard Senior Lu recommended him, so I don’t think he has a problem pa.s.sing.”
“That might not be true. It’s not like there hadn’t been people who wanted to enter the a.s.sociation through a recommendation but could only reach four stones. Many people refuse to take the exam because they know they’d fail so they focus instead on recommendations. And quite a few manage to enter through personal connections.”
“If it were other mentors, they might just let him pa.s.s. But our Teacher Huangfu is infamous for being strict so he’d never let that happen under his nose.”
Lin Jin was just as curious about the level of his spirit energy as well. He had never tried it out before.
After familiarizing himself with the invocation, Lin Jin performed a seal.
His spirit energy began flowing.
The spirit levitation stones immediately reacted, letting out buzzing sounds before rising into the air.
After counting them, there were only four spirit levitation stones floating.
“Well, that’s mediocre!”
“And here I thought this person would be incredible.”
“Yeah. He’s even weaker than me.”
Many disciples started mocking quietly.
But before they could finish laughing, another four spirit levitation stones buzzed before levitating into the air.
The total number came to eight.
Meaning he had eight stones’ worth of spirit energy.
The faces of those disciples immediately turned pale. Quite a few among them had yet to reach this level and even Huangfu Ming was nodding in approval.
Eight stones of spirit energy. Lin Jin pa.s.sed the test!
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