On the spectators platform, thousands of Alchemy Association members were currently staring at the giant light screen in front of them.
Displayed on it were dozens of small screens each periodically shifting through coverage of the test participants actions. In the middle of these smaller screens was a much larger screen that depicted the movements of the people who were related to powerful factions, camps and other prestigious organisations. After all, these were the individuals who most wanted to see.
Since the test had started not too long ago, anything of note had yet to occur. However, at this time the large screen in the middle suddenly shifted and the figures of Fujo, Zilan and the group appeared.
“That’s the Purple Sun family’s young master, right? Who are those people he’s with?” asked a curious Alchemist.
“Ah! Isn’t that the Sumu Alliance’s young miss, Nyoka? Exclaimed another Alchemist. From his high pitched voice it was clear that he adored her.
“Those two young men beside her must also be from the Sumu Alliance however, who is that Half Breed?” wondered a much older Alchemy Association member.
“Indeed, it isn’t surprising to see the Sumu Alliance and the Purple Sun family’s people together. After all, young Master Fujo’s mother, a member of the Alliance, married into the Purple Sun family. Could that Half Breed be a lackey Miss Nyoka brought with her?”
“I don’t think so, I think I saw him arrive with the Purple Heart, Two Flames camp. He’s probably one of Fujo's servants.” Said a rather confident middle-aged fox.
Just as these people were discussing Zilan’s group, a young female Alchemist suddenly let out a surprised shout as she warily pointed at the screen.
Upon seeing the broadcast, many of the Association members sucked in a cold breath.
Two experts had just been brutally and easily slaughtered by an unknown power. They knew that killing was forbidden amongst participants however, when it came to the inhabitants of the forest, those rules no longer applied.
Despite knowing this, they were still shocked and this was because they’d never heard of such a powerful creature living in the green forest.
Little did they know that the reason for their lack of knowledge regarding the fearsome entity was because anyone who approached it was viciously killed.
“What killed those two people?” shouted an old Alchemist. His voice unexpectedly was not fearful but rather quite excited.
He knew that whatever ended their lives would surely be a great treasure.
Soon, the entire platform was filled with similar questions but apparently no one could give a satisfactory answer.
“It’s the Nine Heaven Dew Tree.” Elder White Snow’s deep voice abruptly reverberated throughout the spectators platform.
“Ah! That legendary tree is there!? How come no one has found it until now?”
A loud sneer came from one of the top seats in the spectators area,
“This kind of thing has enough sense to hide itself deep in the ground so as to not be detected. You don’t even know this?”
Everyone looked up to see who it was that so arrogantly spoke, only to find that it was none other than last year’s sole record breaker, the genius Jipende.
His appearance was quite handsome and majestic. In truth, no one found this to be strange after all, it came to everyone’s attention last year that Jipende actually descended from the powerful Desert Sand lion.
It was rare for such a person of strong blood to lack an awe-inspiring presence.
The Alchemist who was being scolded didn’t dare offend the young man after learning who he was. Some things were better left alone, lest it brings you harm.
Who didn’t know that Alchemy Master, Cheko doted on this genius disciple of his?
"Hey, why aren’t those kids fleeing?” questioned Elder White Snow as he turned to face Amani who was standing a little bit behind the Elders. There were nine others around him.
“I don’t know.” The smile on Amani’s face was completely gone as he replied.
He didn’t know why those kids still chose to remain there despite witnessing firsthand the danger the Nine Heaven Dew tree posed.
In the green forest, Fujo and the others were already sweating. They couldn’t help but think about how they had wanted to rush in there believing that they would attain treasures unaware that the only gift awaiting them would be death.
“Brother Zilan..I think we should give up on this thing. It’s too dangerous.” Sighed Fujo.
He was tempted but he also was not a complete idiot.
Zilan too was slightly taken aback by the power of the Nine Heaven Dew tree. He knew it would be powerful but to so effortlessly kill those two experts was something he hadn’t expected.
Despite this though, he still had his own methods. After all, his aim was to acquire only the fruit not to kill the tree. Even if it was slightly weaker than him, Zilan would still not kill it.
The reason? The tree had its own life and as such had a right to protect itself when threatened. It could be described as a sinister plant, but then so what? This was nature taking course, everything had a reason.
Besides, if the tree was called evil for nurturing then killing, then what were humans and Beasts? …Devils?
Zilan had a right to call the tree sinister as he was almost a victim of being nurtured only to be exploited. Everyone else who cursed the tree were those who thought the world revolved around only them.
“There’s no need to worry. Only a fool would directly face that tree.” Zilan spoke as he pulled Kifo towards him.
“What is it?” questioned Kifo. He was wary of being asked to do something as tedious and mind numbing as his previous task.
“I’m going to draw a formation. Once I’m done, slowly insert your darkness energy into it, that way we can seal the tree.”
“Why me? Can’t you do it?” Kifo was beginning to feel that Zilan was a really lazy person.
“In the future will every little task be pushed onto me?” He wondered.
“I can also do it, but your darkness energy should do a better job of suppressing that thing. Don’t ask anymore questions, just prepare.” Laughed Zilan as he picked up a stick from the ground and began drawing a circle around the entire clearing.
In all honesty his Blood force would most likely do a better job but he did not want to act just yet. Thus he could only let Kifo do it.
Once he was done with the circle, Zilan then began scribbling complex inscriptions and runes around the outer edges. Just looking at it, would give one a headache not to mention if someone tried to memorise it, they’d find that it just could not be done.
The name of the formation was called the [Evil Refining Process]. It was one of the many formations for refining written in the Book of Path and was part of a set.
The complete refining set was called [Myriad Refining Formations].
Although there were so many of them, but they all had a fairly basic principle at their core which was extremely frightening. Only a true master would be able to make something so powerful and complicated, appear so basic.
This was also why Zilan had no doubt that the [Myriad Refining Formations] set was created by Zaum.
Fujo and his companions were greatly shocked by the intricate inscriptions Zilan was putting down. The level of mental fortitude and expertise needed to draw them was something they did not possess.
Even the Elders who were nonchalantly looking down on the test, all currently had their eyes wide open. For them who had lived long lives and experienced many things, there existed few things that could startle them and the mysterious intricacy of Zilan’s inscriptions could be counted as one of those things.
It should be known that refining was the essence of Alchemy however, there existed another type of refining which could only be described as a ‘masterful way of suppression’.
What Zilan was currently drawing was precisely this second type of refining formation.