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Lin Mu's words made Little Shrubby's ears perk up.

"I did, but it doesn't change much." Little Shrubby replied.

"Hmm… I think we just need to change the method for it." Lin Mu said before taking out one of the Qi flame crystals that Head Elder Heng had gifted him. "Since this is similar to a pill, why not treat it like one and cook with a Qi flame?" He suggested.

"We can try!" Little Shrubby hadn't thought of that.

And even if he had, it wasn't like he would have been able to do that.

"Before that though, did you find any other herbs?" Lin Mu asked.

"Not much, there are herbs here but they aren't that good." Little Shrubby said taking out a bunch of things he had harvested.

It included a few flowers, roots, and grasses.

"Mmm, yeah they aren't that good." Lin Mu could recognize them and found them to be either spirit herbs or low quality immortal herbs. "Still, we might be able to use them to cook regardless." He added.

"It's why I kept them." Little Shrubby nodded his head.

The two had been regularly using spirit herbs and other herbs that weren't too good but had decent flavor as ingredients.

Having done this many times, Little Shrubby took out a large pot and set it up. Lin Mu added the Qi infused water, and then chopped up the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo Fruits. Little Shrubby on the other hand, added other herbs and spices for flavor.

Once it was done, Lin Mu added the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo Fruits and set the Qi flame crystal below it.

~shua~

He then injected his immortal Qi into it, making it light up. The surprising thing, though, was the fact that the Qi flame coming from the crystal wasn't red or green like when Head Elder Heng had used it. Instead, it was a yellow color with a metallic glint to it.

The Qi flame was being created from the Metal Elemental Immortal Qi!

"Let's see if this softens and enhances the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo Fruits." Lin Mu muttered to himself.

He had specifically chosen the metal elemental immortal Qi, as he knew the metal element would help suppress the wood element of the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo fruits. This would help the fruit break down and soften, which should release more of its energy and mix it with the other herbs.

~bubble~

And sure enough, a few minutes later, the pot started to boil and the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo fruit in it had softened.

Lin Mu picked one of the pieces and pressed it between his fingers, squishing it with ease.

The Evergreen Pillar Bamboo fruits had taken on a texture similar to boiled potatoes.

"Time to taste it," Lin Mu used a spoon and picked up a piece of the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo fruit along with the broth.

~sip~

"OHO!" Lin Mu's eyes lit up. "This is much better!" A gentle starchy flavor mixed with the spices lit up on his tongue.

It wasn't exceedingly good, but Lin Mu knew the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo fruits could easily be used in combination with other ingredients to make an even more appealing dish. The fruits were better to be considered as a side ingredient than the main one.

It had a starchy texture after cooking and could absorb the flavors of the broth or stew well.

All this was just on the flavor side. The beneficial effects of the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo fruit were yet to kick in.

~shua~

Sure enough, a few seconds later the Wood Elemental Qi rose from Lin Mu's stomach and greedily absorbed into his meridians. The amount was greater than before, and Lin Mu could feel that its flow was also better.

'At least a ten to fifteen percent increase.' Lin Mu estimated seeing the change.

This was a significant gain as there was no extra effort needed other than cooking it with Qi flame. Lin Mu knew, that even if he removed the other herbs, it would still give a higher amount of Wood Elemental Immortal Qi.

The Metal element which was destructive to the wood element was beneficial in bringing out the sealed Qi within the fruit, which would be wasted otherwise.

"I really should master how to use advanced Qi flame…" Lin Mu muttered to himself.

If he could do that, he would be able to cook the same without the use of Qi flame crystals. Not to mention, his control would be a lot better than using the crystals.

Lin Mu and Little Shrubby were pleased by this discovery, and both agreed on the fact that they should try learning alchemical flames while they continued to eat. Of course, the single pot of the Evergreen Pillar Bamboo fruit soup was not enough, and as such, Little Shrubby cooked more meat for them.

After a couple of hours, Lin Mu was finally satisfied and felt better.

~shua~

It was at this moment, that he felt something change around him.

"Huh?" Lin Mu raised his brows, feeling the shift in energy.

Not just that, but Lin Mu's senses suddenly picked up hundreds of new presences in the area.

"What in the… The Natural Befuddling array is gone!" Lin Mu realized.

~HOWL~

~SCREECH~

~CHIRP~

And sure enough, just a few seconds later, the sound of the beasts could be heard coming from the distance.

"Many beasts are coming this way." Little Shrubby also smelled them and got ready.

~CRACK~CRACK~CRACK~

The sound of bamboo trees breaking was heard, along with the footsteps of beasts.

Lin Mu's immortal sense quickly analyzed them and estimated their cultivation base.

"Second to third tribulation stage of the Immortal realm." Lin Mu discovered as he pulled out Afternoon Pine.

~shing~

Little Shrubby's claws also extended and heated up, turning red hot.

He was not in his full size, and as would focus on using his speed to his advantage.

Five seconds later, Lin Mu saw the beasts making his eyes narrow.

There were various beasts coming towards them.