Chapter 2: The Pharmaceutics Rookie
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Lin Li woke up in a log cabin. Probably due to the hasty construction, the cabin looked a tad shabby. There was no furniture except for a chair and a bed in the room. The door was unlatched and a pungent odor of medicine wafted through the crack in it, so Lin Li could not open his eyes for a long time.
The Bull’s Strength potion? But it doesn’t smell quite right… Lin Li took a few sniffs and pondered for a long time before he finally understood. Damn! It’s a failed one, no wonder it didn’t smell right to me. But who’s the genius adding leaves from the Wisdom Tree to the potion? Was he not satisfied that the conflicting smell of the combination of the four ingredients was not strong enough?
The concoction was just a high-grade potion. A pharmaceutics guru like Lin Li could easily find out the reasons for failure just by taking a whiff. But it didn’t mean anyone else could. He had yet to sit up from the bed when he heard an exasperated grunt through the crack in the door.
“Impossible! There was no mistake this time, how could it fail again? Is there a problem with the ingredients? Yes, there must be a problem with the ingredients. Great! This dang old man, selling counterfeit goods at my doorstep! l’ll make sure you give me my money back!”
Another fit of temper from the owner of the voice. Lin Li was just about to cover his ears and go back to sleep when the door that was unlatched swung open.
An old man in his sixties or seventies stood behind the door. He had white hair and a face full of wrinkles, but his actions were full of vigor, displaying no signs of old age at all. He wore a long white robe dappled with stains, probably due to the frequent use of potions. There were black and blue traces everywhere on his robe, which made it look kind of messy.
“Kid, I know you’re awake. Stop pretending you’re asleep and get up quickly.” The old man pushed the door open and sat on the vine chair in a huff. In his mind, he was probably still thinking about the failed Bull’s Strength Potion.
“I just woke up…” Lin Li knew that the old man was fuming, so he hurriedly turned over and climbed out of the bed.
However, the look on Lin Li’s face changed the moment he uncovered his quilt.
The Robe of Wrath! He was actually wearing the Robe of Wrath!
It was indeed the Robe of Wrath. Lin Li was sure he couldn’t be wrong. In order to attain this legendary robe with a space to hold thirty scrolls in it, he had spent almost forty thousand gold coins along with a piece of epic equipment and had barely managed to obtain this remarkable magical robe.
It can’t be this odd… Lin Li raised his right hand nervously, thinking he must have seen it wrong. There couldn’t be a ghost in broad daylight!
However, the ring on his thumb proved yet again that his vision was fine. The Ring of Endless Storm, with mythical space being its most singular attribute, possessed an almost infinite space in it. It was said that there was a big secret hidden in the ring. Lin Li attained two mythical equipment pieces when he went into the Well of Sun—the Stars of Fury held by the hunter and the Ring of Endless Storm right in front of him.
The ring was just too familiar for Lin Li to remember it wrong.
Looking at the Robe of Wrath he was wearing and the Ring of Endless Storm on his finger, Lin Li felt that he had no need to open the portal to the other dimension again. He was certain that it contained over a hundred pieces of dragon skin and over twenty pieces of divinity metals, along with the numerous top-grade equipment and materials he had accumulated previously.
What… What kind of damned situation is this? In fact, he had vaguely guessed that something bizarre must have happened to him when he had woken a while back. But he would never have guessed it would be strange to this point.
The entirety of the Endless World actually appeared in reality!
Both the Robe of Wrath and the Ring of Endless Storm were equipment from the Endless World. They were only statistics, but now these statistics were present in the real world. Everything felt so real. The Robe of Wrath was constantly emitting its peculiar warmth and the Ring of Endless Storm lay quietly on his thumb. Lin Li could totally feel that he could open up the near infinite space that was in the ring with just a thought.
“May… May I ask where in the world this place is?” Lin Li’s voice was so hoarse that it surprised him. He was afraid the old man would mention a place he was familiar with. A load of data appearing in the real world was not frightening, what was really frightening was him becoming a load of data—just like the plot that often appeared in horror movies. A wisp of resentful soul sojourning in the network, relying on various killing websites to find a substitute.
“You don’t even know this place?” The question was nothing out of the ordinary, but the old man stared with eyes wide open.
“I don’t know…” Lin Li nodded honestly.
“Then what are you here for? This is the Sunset Mountains, one of the most dangerous places in the south of the Anril Continent. Even an old fellow like myself would only dare to come here for a few days’ stay every July. You little kid, you have guts, swaggering into the place without even knowing where this is!”
Lin Li knew it was a big deal when he heard the unfamiliar name of the Anril Continent. Other than transmigration, he had no other explanation for it. However, even Lin Li himself felt a little strange. For no reason at all he had become a transmigrator, and yet he felt relieved. The first thing on his mind was, surprisingly, something else, for he thought, Transmigration it is. Better than becoming a resentful soul on the internet…
“Alright, kid, though I don’t know why you came here”—the old man glanced at the Celestial Cane placed on the side of the bed, and with an impatient look on his face, turned to face Lin Li—”and of course have no wish to know why… In any case, the Sunset Mountains are not a place for excursions. If you’re looking for some thrill or would like to train yourself out of boredom, then I’ll offer you one advice. Go back where you come from and don’t ever come seeking death in the Sunset Mountains again.”
Not waiting for any reaction from Lin Li after he finished his sentence, he stretched out his hand and pushed the unlatched door open, once again burying himself among his beakers and test tubes.
You’re the one looking for thrill, your whole family is looking for thrill! Lin Li stared at the unlatched door as he cursed bitterly in his heart. It was only after cursing that he felt sorrowful again. Transmigration had become his reality, but this was an entirely foreign world and he had not grasped even the most basic concepts of it. To go back where he had came from… He’d like to go back indeed, but how?
Moreover, what the old man said at the end sounded like an admonition and a threat. It didn’t sound too good, but Lin Li understood the meaning behind it. The Sunset Mountains were definitely not a peaceful place. Now that he couldn’t even tell the directions here, mishaps could happen if he just walked out of the place foolishly.
“You only have ten minutes. If I find that you’re still not packed and gone by the time I complete this bottle of Bull’s Strength potion, don’t blame me for chasing you out.” Lin Li had yet to come to a decision on his part but the old man outside the door was not at all polite, directly chasing him out.
Lin Li took a smell of the medicine and knew the old man had added leaves from the Wisdom Tree once again.
“If I were you, I’d be in a hurry to scoop those two leaves out. Otherwise, not to mention ten minutes, the beaker in your hand will explode once again in less than ten seconds.” Lin Li’s laugh sounded unusually nasty.
“Pack your stuff immediately and get out of my house!”
The angry roar had yet to die down when a muffled sound of explosion was heard from behind the door. A plume of smoke followed and the pungent smell of medicine wafted through the door’s crack, and Lin Li found it hard to open his eyes again. Then the door was flung open and the old man rushed in, completely ignoring that his head was covered in bruises from the explosion. He grabbed Lin Li and demanded, “Speak! How did you know it would explode?”
“What’s so strange about it…” Lin Li maintained his nasty smile and broke off mid-sentence. With his finger, he pointed at his collar where the old man was grabbing.
“Sorry, I was too agitated.” The old man laughed embarrassedly. He released him somewhat awkwardly and smiled as he helped Lin Li straighten his crumpled collar.
“Actually, the reason is too simple.” Lin Li smiled in contentment. He took a seat on the vine chair and began, “There are four main ingredients for the Bull’s Strength potion. They are the Dracaena grass, the Thousand-knot Vine, the Nightmare Flower, and the Troll’s Blood. The medicinal properties of the ingredients clash with one another, but there is a delicate balance between them. It is not wrong to add some supplementary ingredients to improve its medicinal properties, but something like the leaves of the Wisdom Tree… I can only say you’re too smart for your own good. Although the leaves are usually used to balance the conflict between ingredients, their other effect is to calm the mind. Putting a herb with calming effects into a potion that strengthens the body is like putting a cat into a rat’s cage.”
“So this is it, I’ve thought…” A master’s knowledge of medicine meant one could speak of these as easily as if having all the words at hand. The old man was completely convinced by Lin Li’s eloquence, but at the same time, he couldn’t help but size up Lin Li with an odd look. He couldn’t quite figure out the kid in front of him anymore. He possessed an almost perfect talent in magic but was extremely weak. He’d figure Lin Li was at the standard of a level-one mage at most. But, coming to the Sunset Mountains alone, he had too much guts to be called a rookie.
But what really eluded him was the kid’s ability to explain the principles of the Bull’s Strength potion. He was not really a master in potion crafting himself, but the Bull’s Strength potion was an ancient potion recipe he got from the High Elves Relics. Not to mention average pharmacists, it was impossible to find information on the power of the Bull’s Strength potion even in the Anril Pharmacists Association. But coming from the kid’s mouth, it sounded like it was something common and easy to understand, just like buying vegetables from the market. At the thought of this, the old man could not help but wonder if there was any justice in this world.
When Lin Li finished explaining the principles of the Bull’s Strength potion and began analyzing the pros and cons of similar potions, the old man watched him as if Lin Li was a dinosaur.
The old man had completely forgotten about wanting Lin Li to leave. Looking at the darkening sky outside the log cabin, the old man was eager to invite Lin Li to stay, and even prepared a sumptuous dinner for him. After rounds of beating around the bush during dinner, Lin Li was gradually able to make out a general outline of the unfamiliar world in his mind.
This was a world of swords and magic. The old man in front of him, whom he had come to know as Andoine, was a mage by profession, and a powerful one at that. Although Andoine did not elaborate on how powerful he was, Lin Li could tell from his confident tone that this somewhat unkempt old man was definitely more powerful than he had imagined him to be.