One Wish to Own the World -
Chapter 8 8 – Learning Alchemy
"Mommy needs to prepare a few more pills for today and do her job. I will read only the first page, and then if you want more, I can call the girls."
She read the next page out loud and Ken carefully followed her in the book, remembering the pronunciation of every letter.
"The Yellow Moon Grass is found mostly in places with strong humidity and a lot of sunlight. The grass' properties vary depending on the mixed herbs…"
A few minutes later, Mei finished reading the page and ran her hand through Ken's hair.
"Was it interesting?"
The first page was all about the Yellow Moon Grass. It involved places near the sect where you could find it, what conditions it needs to grow, and how one could mix it with various ingredients to achieve different effects.
Ken already understood how difficult it was to learn alchemy – one term led to another. Just from reading about this grass, he had to open the information about 14 other ingredients just to see their interaction with this grass. Luckily, he wouldn't be confused thanks to his memory.
"Yes, it was very interesting. Can you call one of the girls to read more?"
He saw some signs he didn't recognize on the second page, so he figured the first one didn't have all the letters. His mom nodded and used her Qi to call one of the girls in the building.
"Keep an eye on him for an hour. Do what he asks you as long as it doesn't hurt you. You can have 10 CP for it."
She instructed the girl who nodded in return.
"Hello young master, I'm Sol, do you want to play with me?"
"No. Read this page for me."
The girl's eyes followed the direction of his finger and cringed when she saw the thick book laying on the floor. She had nightmares from this book; she had been reading it for months and still forgot everything all the time and had to read it over and over again.
"Um, young master. This is so troublesome and boring, don't you prefer to play a game? How about playing hide and seek instead? It's much more fun!"
She said with a smile, trying to tempt the baby in front of her to ditch his studies for the sake of games.
"No, read it."
His high-pitched baby voice masked the coldness in his voice. Ken didn't believe in humans by now. Even this girl who treated him nicely now only did it because of his superior social standing.
Ken knew that if he would be considered talentless in cultivation when he grows up, society would shun him, and this girl would be no different. That was the nature of humans; they would respect the strong and bully the weak.
Since she was only treating him respectfully because he was strong, he will treat her poorly because she was weak.
"Are you sure?"
This time he looked at her eyes with clear impatience. The girl shivered for a moment when a feeling of fear crawled on her skin and quickly began to read the next page.
She started reading another page this time without arguing.
"Enough. Stand in the side and be quiet."
He stopped her in the middle of the third page when he saw could recognize all the letters and sent her away so he can read without being bothered. To the girl, it seemed like he was a baby playing with the book. He would skim through quickly and flip to the next page.
'hmph, I was scared for nothing. I must have imagined the threatening look in his eyes. Look, he is just a baby playing with a book."
She scolded herself inwardly for getting scared of a 2-year-old toddler.
The book had around 800 pages, and in an hour, he finished around 250 pages.
"Ken, it's time to go, I finished concocting pills and I have other work to do, want to come with me?"
"No, I'm having fun with Sol. I want to be with her in two hours."
He looked around and saw the girl was bored to death. She was sitting with her legs crossed, her elbow on her knee, and her head resting in her palm. She looked at him while her eyes struggled to stay open.
Upon hearing his words she widened her eyes in surprise.
'What does he mean by having fun with me, he had been flipping pages and ignoring me the whole time!"
But when seeing Ken's stare, she decided it was better to just agree with him.
"That's… true. I will be happy to keep the young master company for 2 more hours."
Mei looked at the duo suspiciously. She obviously saw how bored the girl was when she entered the room. However, she mainly cared about her son's fun, not the girl's, so she didn't mind even if the girl lied.
"All right then, I will pay you 20 more CP."
She turned around and left. Ken sat back and continued reading the book while Sol closed her eyes again.
"Yes, young master? Are you bored and want to play a game?"
He looked at her with a weird gaze. He was the toddler, so why was she the one excited about playing games?
"No, tell me what this sign means."
He pointed at a letter he didn't see until now.
"It's 'x'. Is that all?"
She went back to her place and sat down.
"You can place the book back on the shelf."
He finished reading 2 hours later and woke up Sol who was drifting off, making her open her eyes with excitement.
"What do you want to do now?"
She got up lazily and did as he said. She never expected a baby to play with a book for three hours straight; he even flipped all the pages until the end and looked at every page!
"Nothing, my mother should come here soon to pick me up."
She sat down and waited, while Ken closed his eyes and thought about what he just learned. He still needed to experiment to make more precise judgments, but he could come up with different formulas with different types of effects just by reading the first book.
He rewatched the scene of his mom making the pill before him and recognized 3 of the 7 ingredients.
'I guess not all ingredients were included in that book. It makes sense, it would be weird if the whole world of herbs could enter a single book.
"Ken, I'm here. Want to grab some food?"
"Yes, I'm hungry."
Ken and Sol opened their eyes when they heard Mei's voice, and Ken went to meet his mother.
She ordered Sol to go and tell the staff to bring food to her office and left along with Ken.
"Mommy, do you have more books about herbs except for the one I played with earlier?"
"Yes, there are three more. Did you have fun playing with that book?"
"Mm, yes. Can you give me the rest of the books?"
"I can… but did you really have that much fun playing with the book? Does it matter which book you play with?"
When they arrived at her office, she took three books from the shelf and showed Ken how she placed them in her space ring.
"I took them, just remind me to give them to you at home, okay cutie?"
Ken nodded and continued to think about the potential of alchemy.
'If my ideas are true, there are plenty of ways to increase my base power. I should concoct those theoretical pills as soon as possible, so when I get strengthened later as I climb up the stages, the power multiplication will also apply to this strengthening.'
His idea meant that if, for example, he had now 10 points of power and staging up would double his power. If he took a pill that could grant him 4 points of power, then he would have 28 points after breaking through. But if he took the pill only after he staged up, then he would have 24 points instead.
It was the same principle he found out by training his body as an infant rather than waiting until when he turned 12; the earlier you add your improvements, the better the results will be.
The day ended and they went back home. Ken spent the rest of the day traveling with his mother around the building, so he got to see all kinds of concocting techniques that were added to his calculations.
"Mom, please give me the books."
Mei took the three books out of her space rings and gave them to Ken. She sighed at the thought of buying new ones for herself.
Ken spent the next three days learning about herbs and ingredients for alchemy and running mental experiments in his mind. Now that he had so many ideas to try out, he felt a new sense of urgency to awaken his meridians and dantian.
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