Xu Xiaoshou had no explanation for him.
Hed been cultivating pills!
But he couldnt tell the old man that.
He was clearly livid, and who knew if he could still be reasoned with.
What he needed to do right now was to get him to calm down.
“Dont get worked up…”
Xu Xiaoshou gave the old man a light push.
Elder Sangs eyelids started to twitch violently, and the sight of it nearly made Xu Xiaoshous heart stop.
“I succeeded!” he hastily added.
Elder Sang froze suddenly.
At tricking the old man, obviously…
Xu Xiaoshou exhaled a soft sigh of relief.
If hed drawn the Passive Skill of Flame Expertise, he would have confidently declared that he had succeeded in refining the Infernal Fire Seed.
But he had acquired the damn Cooking Expert…
Alright, he wasnt going to harp on that anymore.
It would only make him cry.
“Take a look!”
Xu Xiaoshou wasnt sure if this was going to work at all.
He laid his palm out flat, and in the middle of his palm, Infernal Heavenly Flames flickered into life.
He was seized by a strange feeling.
It was as if…
…he could feel the excitement that the flames on his palm were feeling.
“Theres something different about this!” Something hit him then.
He recalled the scorching heat that hed awoken to in the illusory realm.
One needed fire to cook, didnt they
He supposed his newly acquired skill did have something to do with fire after all.
Xu Xiaoshous lips twitched.
He couldnt help but find the entire thing ridiculous…
“Thats it” Elder Sang frowned as he stared at Xu Xiaoshous palm.
Xu Xiaoshou gave him a look that said “be patient.” Then, he pooled his full attention on the fire in his palm.
The flames shrank.
A fireball spun rapidly in the middle of his palm, releasing waves of heat that distorted the air above the flames.
Elder Sang was silent.
The extent of compression that Xu Xiaoshou had managed to achieve during his brief absence was impressive.
But his progress didnt explain the last explosion at all.
He gave Xu Xiaoshou a look that indicated the latter could move on now.
Beads of sweat appeared on Xu Xiaoshous forehead.
He could sense another strange bond unfolding between him and the fireball on his palm.
He still had more than five thousand Passive Points.
“Should I use them all” he thought.
Xu Xiaoshou hesitated.
If Cooking Expert were an Expertise Passive Skill meant for combat, the thought of leveling up the skill with every Passive Point he currently had never wouldve crossed his mind.
Instead, he wouldve deliberately timed his leveling up, like he had for Sword Technique Expertise.
He was completely talentless.
If he tried to learn too many spiritual techniques, he would never progress beyond the first move of the White Cloud Sword Technique.
But if he were to level up his skills during battle, the sudden surge of knowledge might lead him to an epiphany and grant him a new technique.
That was how hed acquired the Modified Sword Style and the Blade-draw Technique.
This strategy was based on his experience with Expertise Passive Skills, and hed developed it to acquire more spiritual techniques.
He knew that he was exploiting a loophole in the system, but honestly, it worked very well.
He lacked talent, so he had to make up for that with a few additional skills.
Well, Cooking Expert…
…didnt seem like a name someone would give a skill that was meant for combat.
He had no idea if his strategy would work…
He saw the sullen look on Elder Sangs face and had a terrible suspicion that his future would be grim if he didnt survive his current predicament.
“So be it!”
After some thought, he decided to trade all his Passive Points for Skill Points and use all of the latter on Cooking Expert.
“Cooking Expert (Acquired Lv.
A deluge of knowledge instantly flooded his mind.
This was the first time Xu Xiaoshou had attempted to level up an Expertise Passive Skill five consecutive times.
He could feel his mind bending under the weight of all that knowledge.
His head was killing him!
The fireball in the center of his palm wavered, and Elder Sangs face involuntarily twitched at the sight.
“You mean you cant even master control over such a small fireball”
Xu Xiaoshou didnt answer him.
His brain was flooded with a sudden torrent of information on an array of ingredients, recipes, and various cooking techniques.
“Thats it!” His eyes lit up.
Simmering, baking, sautéing…
All kinds of weird trivia popped into his head.
But he didnt care!
What did care about was the clear and growing bond between him and the flames burning on his palm.
This didnt feel like a skill that he had recently acquired.
It felt as if hed had it for years.
It was as if he had complete mastery over it!
Xu Xiaoshou grinned as he stuck his palm out.
Before Elder Sang could voice his confusion, he heard a soft pop, then watched as the fireball on Xu Xiaoshous palm expanded and grew to a size that a man could comfortably wrap his arms around.
Waves of heat erupted from the fireball, ripping the old mans straw hat from his head while sending Xu Xiaoshous clothes flapping furiously.
Elder Sang was blown away.
He couldnt believe the mastery that Xu Xiaoshou had gained over the Infernal Heavenly Flames within his brief absence.
“I told you to shrink it, not expand it!
“Whats all that about…” he huffed in annoyance.
“How are you going to cultivate anything with that Thatll melt the hardiest cauldron!”
Xu Xiaoshou shook his head.
“Cant you tell This is…
“…ehem, its Sautéing!”
He grinned cheekily.
With a twist of his fingers, the enormous fireball disappeared and was replaced by a small, quiet flame in the center of his palm.
Gone was the furious, wild fire.
Like a tamed beast, the flame licked quietly at the center of Xu Xiaoshous palm, burning steadily.
Hed had no need to employ his Breathing Technique this time.
Instead, hed relied on his mastery over heat and fire to accomplish the daunting feat that hed tried and failed to achieve so many times before.
The thought left him caught between laughter and tears.
Hed expected Cooking Expert to be a useless skill.
In fact, hed had half a mind to cast aside the irrelevant trivia crowding his brain and only retain the knowledge that gave him mastery over fire.
With the latter, it would be the same as achieving his dream of wielding the Flame Expertise.
He would be able to do nearly everything that he could possibly do with the Flame Expertise.
Yet, the more he thought about it…
…the more he realized that Cooking Expert was so much better than Flame Expertise.
With the former, he could whip up a meal for himself when he had nothing better to do…
Xu Xiaoshou could feel a toothache coming on.
This was getting ridiculous.
Elder Sang was blown away.
He couldnt believe it.
Xu Xiaoshou had actually managed to refine the Infernal Fire Seed in the brief period hed been away.
But hed counted the explosions.
There had only been three of them!
He had taken an entire day to refine that d*mn thing, and, during the process, had blown himself up numerous times.
In fact, his skin had turned brown and cracked by the end of it all while his insides had turned out soft and tender.
Xu Xiaoshou, on the other hand…
…had emerged unscathed, but the Spiritual Law Division had ended up been destroyed.
Elder Sang got a grip on his emotions and said slowly, “So, that last explosion.
Were you the one who caused it”
It didnt matter that this young rascal had managed to master the technique of refining an Infernal Fire Seed within such a short period of time.
Elder Sang wasnt convinced that a Level 9 Spirit Cultivator could unleash a power so destructive and immense that even the Spiritual Law Division couldnt contain it.
Xu Xiaoshou started to panic.
He wasnt the one whod blown up the Spiritual Law Division, but there was no way he was going to tell Elder Sang everything that had happened in his illusion.
His will over the flame wavered, and the Infernal Fire Seed on his palm flickered unsteadily.
“I was testing out my new technique, Lesser Fireball!
“Lesser Fireball” Doubt flickered in Elder Sangs eyes.
The fireball resting in Xu Xiaoshous palm brimmed with power.
Elder Sang could be persuaded to believe that it was powerful enough to breach the Spiritual Law Divisions protective barriers, but how had it managed to blow out his windows
“Suspected, Passive Points 1.”
He knew it…
Xu Xiaoshou didnt spare the old man a single glance as he muttered to himself, “Thats just for starters.”
“Is that so” Elder Sang picked his straw hat off the ground.
“Are you saying that you managed to come up with a more powerful move within such a short period of time”
“Thats right!” Xu Xiaoshou smiled smugly.
“Its the Seeds on All Five Fingers!”