GDK 726: I admit defeat
News of the deeds that Avery committed on that night spread through the City of Shadows after the sun rose.
Including Tuyas from the House of Buller, five had fallen to him. Although these five were mere midgods, they were prestigious and renowned characters in the City of Shadows. Their sudden deaths immediately attracted the public’s attention.
The Celestial Pearl Pharmacy didn’t have their own divine guards but Erebus had assigned Anito and a small squadron from the Third Corps to patrol around the campus. Anito was quickly alerted about Avery’s intrusion into the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy that night. However, he arrived on the scene even later than Akley and had absolutely no clue what happened.
At dawn, the Chief of the Third Corps, Erebus, personally came to visit Han Shuo.
“You sure it was him?” Erebus immediately asked after Han Shuo led him into a secret chamber.
“I’m certain. It is Avery! If it wasn’t for the fact that Andrina was just beside me, I’m afraid that I would have fallen to the same fate as Tuyas and the others,” Han Shuo said as though he was still frightened by the event. He claimed that Andrina had defeated Avery lest he attracts unwanted attention from the Sainte Family.
Even if Han Shuo hadn’t provided any detailed explanation, Erebus would logically assume that it was Andrina who beat back Avery. Back at the Kisa Residence, Erebus had witnessed Andrina’s power with his own eyes. He thought that in the whole of the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy, only Andrina would possess that kind of strength.
Erebus nodded and coldly groaned, “How outrageous! It seems that Avery has no intention of staying in the city any longer!”
Han Shuo remained silent. He knew that Avery would have left the City of Shadows that night. Given how familiar Avery was to the City of Shadows, with the help of his confidants, even the House of Sainte would have trouble stopping him escaping from the City of Shadows.
After all, he used to be the Chief of the Fifth Corps!
Erebus did not stay in the Celestial Pearl for too long. After asking Han Shuo about the incidents of the last night, he hastily departed.
For the next few days, Han Shuo learned from Anito that the House of Sainte had been searching for Avery with all their strength. However, Avery's foresighted planning proved him an exceptional escape artist, and their search yielded no results.
All of Avery’s confidants left with him on that night. As for those divine guards of the Fifth Corps who remained in the City of Shadows, after being thoroughly interrogated, they were released and put under heavy surveillance.
Soon enough, the House of Sainte publicly denounced Avery and listed all the atrocities he performed in the City of Shadows, including the fact that he had attempted to assassinate Carmelita. Avery’s actions were widely discussed by the citizens of the City of Shadows.
Just as expected, the Fifth Corps was shut down. Members of the House of Lavers were subjected to heavy interrogation. The patriarch of the House of Lavers, Felder, decisively disowned Avery. To ensure the safety of his House of Lavers, Felder pushed all the responsibility on Avery and even publicly announced that Avery was banished from his family clan effective immediately. Avery would no longer be a member of the House of Lavers.
Felder’s decisive action may have saved the lives of his family clan members, but those reckless deeds of Avery’s had nonetheless severely affected the strength of the House of Lavers. Not only had they lost control to this powerful institution called the Fifth Corps, with the House of Sainte’s deliberate and constant oppression, the House of Lavers suddenly became the weakest of the five major family clans.
All those disturbances in the City of Shadows did not have much of an effect on Han Shuo. After a period of preparation, the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy managed to recruit a significant number of talents in various aspects. They finally gathered enough manpower to open for business in the City of Shadows.
It was also at this point in time that Han Shuo ran into yet another thorny problem. The group of pharmacists led by Gu Li constantly hastened and urged Han Shuo to teach them the principles behind the refinement of his Pill of Rejuvenation, Pill of Tranquillity, and Rebirth Pill!
Gu Li and the union of pharmacists had traveled thousands of miles and come to the City of Shadows because they were admiring of Han Shuo’s skills in medicine refinement and wanted to learn from him. When they first started working in the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy, as they were occupied with mountains of work, they did not bother Han Shuo with such requests but buried their heads and worked to get Celestial Pearl Pharmacy on the right track.
Now that most of the work was done and everything was in motion, they had more free time and began asking Han Shuo about all kinds of abstruse problems related to medicine refinement.
And thus yet another round of headache began for Han Shuo. He couldn’t even understand the problems that the pharmacists were asking him, much less think up answers to those questions. All that while, he found excuses to avoid answering their questions. But now that Gu Li and the rest of the pharmacists were coming to him all at once, he knew that he had to stop avoiding.
They were in a pharmacy lab filled with glass tools and containers. The cabinets were lined with colorful jars in which all kinds of medicinal ingredients were arranged methodically. At the center of the lab was an intricate-looking sphere made of glass. It was placed atop a large pile of glimmering energy crystals.
The group of thirteen pharmacists headed by Gu Li stood all around the lab, gazing at Han Shuo.
These pharmacists who had pressed on with joining the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy even after having heard rumors about Han Shuo’s arrogant and irascible temper were very much like Gu Li – they were masters in the art of medicine refinement. Therefore, it was absolutely impossible for Han Shuo to lie to them. Facing their fiery gazes that were thirsty for knowledge, Han Shuo felt as though he had built his own demise.
He knew he had to somehow solve this issue, or all these pharmacists would leave the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy with their apprentices. And if that happened, his Celestial Pearl Pharmacy that was just starting to become operational would collapse from the inside, swiftly and spectacularly.
“To tell you the truth, the medicine refinement I know of is entirely different than what you all know!” Han Shuo knew he had no choice but to tell the truth. He braced himself and said, “In fact, I do not know much about the art of medicine refinement you practice!”
The pharmacists in the room looked at Han Shuo with puzzled gazes after hearing those words but they remained silent and continued to listen to Han Shuo. “I don’t think any of you would have heard or seen of the art of medicine refinement my master taught me. Erm, let me demonstrate!” Han Shuo knew he had to show something or that would be the end of the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy. With one thought, the Nine Tessellation Cauldron entered Han Shuo’s palm.
“Your way of medicine refinement requires extracting and mixing compounds in glass containers by altering the temperature. Mine is different in that I mix the medical ingredients directly. Then, I then use special methods to extract the compounds in the ingredients before rapidly congealing them into solids by…" Han Shuo slowly explained.
Han Shuo demonstrated by refining a pelleted medicine as he spoke. He inserted a few medical ingredients into the Nine Tessellation Cauldron revolving on his palm. Right after that, a fragrant scent of medicine permeated the lab. The cauldron was spurred by the red flames coming from his palm and it started to revolve rapidly. The tessellation on it would glimmer with a faint halo. It was fascinating.
To these pharmacists, Han Shuo’s actions were simply unimaginable. They stared at Han Shuo performing the demonstration like fools. They couldn’t understand how Han Shuo could refine medicine by throwing all the raw ingredients into a single container. Their usual way of producing medicine would begin by individually extracting the compounds from raw ingredients. Then, they would mix those extracts in ratios according to the effect they wished to achieve. Compared to Han Shuo’s one-pan-cooks-all method, not only did their approach have a ton of additional procedures, the end results were not as good as his.
The pharmacy lab was filled with a pleasant scent. A few moments later, several dark-gold Rebirth Pills flew out from the Nine Tessellation Cauldron. Han Shuo crushed the pills and placed them in several medicine bottles. He handed them to some of the pharmacists and said smilingly, “Have a taste. It’s very beneficial to your body!”
The pharmacists were tempted just from the scent alone. They had long heard about the miraculousness of the medicines Han Shuo personally refined and had wanted to experience it for themselves. Hence, after Han Shuo’s invitation, they merely hesitated for a moment before they swallowed the medicines in their hands.
As professional pharmacists, these people could immediately detect the effect Han Shuo’s medicines had on their bodies. It was clear to them just how potent the medicine was.
Soon enough, the pharmacists had to make urgent trips to the bathroom and defecate like they had diarrhea. However, they would all look much healthier after coming out of the bathroom. They exclaimed in admiration, “What a miraculous drug! This medicine is unbelievable!”
Even those few pharmacists who did not get to experience the Rebirth Pill became more revering of Han Shuo after seeing that their colleagues appeared to be filled with vitality.
Gu Li appeared much healthier after a round of solid waste excrement. Upon returning from the washroom, she kowtowed towards Han Shuo and uttered, “I admit defeat!”
Of these people, Gu Li had the greatest reputation. No one would ever again doubt Han Shuo’s capability with her acknowledging Han Shuo’s prowess.
“As none of you are my apprentices, I cannot teach you my method and technique of refining medicine,” Han Shuo observed the expressions on the faces of his pharmacists. When they displayed looks of disappointment, Han Shuo added, "But, I can talk to you about the efficacy of certain unique medical ingredients. You may not be familiar with these medical ingredients but they carry miraculous effects. If you proceed with investigating and experimenting with those ingredients, I believe you will learn new things and make great advancements.
Han Shuo naturally wouldn't teach the pharmacists his techniques of medicine refinement as it required demonic yuan. Even if Han Shuo was to do so, as they did not cultivate in demonic arts, they wouldn't be able to produce pelleted medicine. However, Han Shuo was willing to teach them about the special effects that certain medicinal ingredients had as a way of thanking them for having worked so hard for the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy.
The pharmacists expressed their gratitude upon hearing those words. They were contented with that guarantee from Han Shuo, even though they would not learn Han Shuo’s out-of-the-world medicine refinement technique.
Han Shuo then took out some medical ingredients he had personally collected, placed them in glass containers, and proceeded with explaining their uses. Han Shuo used all kinds of professional terminologies which left the impression on the pharmacists that his knowledge was deep and profound. Their gazes towards Han Shuo were filled with admiration and respect.
These pharmacists listened to Han Shuo with eager ears and took notes in their booklets. They could not wait to experiment with those new medical ingredients they just learned from Han Shuo. They seemed inexplicably excited as like children with new toys.
“Alright, I have explained all the functions and compounds in these medical ingredients. What comes next is all up to your own understanding and capability. Perhaps you could come up with new medicines using these medical ingredients, or perhaps not, but this is all I can do for you!” Han Shuo then left the pharmacy lab. Thinking that he had evaded a crisis, he secretly heaved a sigh of relief.
Everything went without a hitch in the following period of time. A few of Han Shuo’s pharmacists, inspired by him, actually managed to invent several new types of medicines from the medical ingredients they had previously never heard of. Although the efficacy of their medicines was still far behind compared to Han Shuo’s pelleted medicines, the pharmacists were very delighted and excited to have made such progress so soon.
With everything about Celestial Pearl Pharmacy falling into place, Han Shuo then started recruiting staff to manage storage facilities to allow the apprentices of those pharmacists to collect even more medical ingredients. He was ready to open the brand-new Celestial Pearl Pharmacy for business in the City of Shadows.
It was at this point in time that out of the blue, Donna went to the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy to look for Han Shuo.
Han Shuo could tell from first glance that Donna appeared much more haggard than before. Her eyes revealed an intense looming gloom as though she was facing an unsolvable problem. She only forced a smile when they met.
“Long time no see, Donna!” Han Shuo sighed in his mind after greeting Donna. He had heard a thing or two about the recent conditions in the House of Lavers. Avery’s deeds had severely affected the House of Lavers. As the House of Sainte lost their trust in them, the Lavers Family began to decline in the City of Shadows.
Contrary to the miserable state of the House of Lavers, Han Shuo’s Celestial Pearl Pharmacy was rapidly growing and flourishing, even showing early signs of budding into a new family clan. Donna's mood sank into deeper and deeper sadness when she recalled how it was back when Han Shuo had just arrived at the City of Shadows.
“Congratulations, Bryan. It appears that the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy will become a new powerhouse in the City of Shadows!” Donna forced a smile.
“Thank you, Donna. Is there anything I can help you with? Haha, if you need medicines, given our relations, I will give you the very best price!” Han Shuo assured and patted on his chest. He said it as though the two were still the best of friends.
Donna shook her head smilingly and replied, “I have come here to say goodbye. I’m going to leave this place for a long time. We won’t have much opportunity to meet in the future.”
“Why so sudden? Where are you going?” Han Shuo was shocked.
“It’s unlikely that our House of Lavers will accomplish much in the City of Shadows. Rather than staying and getting harassed, we might as well leave. Bryan, I’m glad to have known you. I was right about you. Truly, I feel very proud of you that you could establish yourself in the City of Shadows in such a short time,” Donna said with a smile.
Han Shuo sighed again after hearing those words. Given the current situation, the House of Lavers indeed had a bleak future in the City of Shadows. Han Shuo did not know how to console Donna who was wearing a saddened face. After keeping silent for a long while, he sighed and said, “Bon voyage, Donna. I will never forget the kindness you have shown me!”
“Goodbye. I hope that the next time we meet, your Celestial Pearl Pharmacy would have replaced our House of Lavers’ place in the City of Shadows to become one of the five major family clans!” Donna waved her hand and left.
Han Shuo was astounded because he felt a veiled resentfulness in her words. He thought to himself, Is she thinking that the Celestial Pearl Pharmacy has risen by stepping on the House of Lavers?
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