Maria was trying to break through to Nascent Soul, but unfortunately, she failed, and in the process, she hurt her dantian. With this injury, her prospect of reaching Nascent soul vanished, but she didn't give up and tried to find ways to restore the dantian again. There were ways to heal her dantian, but Maria could never afford it. At last, she gave up after not being able to do anything.
Only a few days had passed when she noticed herself getting weaker day by day. When she finally found the reason for it, she lost hope for healing again since Qi was leaking from her dantian. It was returning to its state before creation. After a few days of stress, she finally accepted the fact that she was going to regress back to Xiantian. Otherwise, she would've burst due to stress.
After losing the ability to cultivate, she started traveling around the Bisan Kingdom. Today, her destination was the largest market in Kakot. She was traveling in the market when she noticed an unusual building in the market.
It was the tallest building as far as she could see in the market. It was made up of the most common materials in the Bisan Kingdom, but the structure gave her a sense of majesty which she didn't even get from the King's palace. When she read the name of the store, she couldn't help but smile. She murmured, "Someone even more narcissistic than the king, who even names their store 'The First Store'?"
The store interested her, so she decided to check out the products and meet the narcissistic owner of the store. The door of the store was open, so she went inside and saw a blue-skinned barechested person playing with a cat.
Her footsteps might've disturbed them, so they turned around and looked at her. "Oh, I am sorry, I didn't know it was your playtime," She apologized with an apologetic expression on her face.
"No worry, we were just passing the time," The strange-looking man stood up and responded.
"What a cute cat!" Maria then exclaimed. Her eyes shined when she looked at the white cat.
"Do you mind if I touch it?" She asked the stranger with an intense expression in her eyes.
"Yes, I do mind," The stranger responded bluntly.
The straight refusal stunned Maria. She never expected the store owner to refuse her so bluntly. The cat also meowed at the same time to show its agreement with the owner.
"Hello, I am Maria," She regained her calm after a few moments and introduced herself.
"I am Aakesh, and she is Lily," The stranger nodded and introduced himself and the cat.
"Hello, Lily," Maria then tried to talk to Lily. Lily ignored her in response and jumped on Aakesh's head.
Maria could only smile wryly at Lily's response. The owner and the cat were too straightforward for her. She regained her calm, "What do you sell in the store?" She saw the shelf next to the store counter, but she ignored it and asked Aakesh because he'll talk respectfully this time.
"We currently only have pills. The store's variety will increase in the future," Aakesh replied, moving toward the shelf.
"We only have three types of pills right now!"
"First-grade inferior healing pill: It can heal even severe external injuries without leaving any scars. The cost is 25 inferior Primal stones."
"First-grade inferior mental healing pill: It can heal mental injuries. The cost is the same a before, 25 Primal stones."
"First-grade inferior dantian healing pill: It can help in healing the injury in dantian. This pill costs 50 Primal stones."
Aakesh introduced the pills and explained their details.
Maria only stood there silently after hearing the outrageous price quoted by Aakesh. "25 Primal stones for an inferior pill!" She couldn't help but exclaim.
"25 Primal stones for a first-grade inferior pill," Aakesh corrected her as she forgot to add first-grade.
Maria was stunned by his response. She had an interest in two pills, one mental healing pill, and the second dantian healing pill. She didn't know why but she wanted to have the pill. It somehow gave her the hope of cultivating again.
"Can you please reduce the price of mental and dantian healing pills?" Maria nervously asked.
Aakesh didn't speak but pointed to her behind. She turned around and saw nothing, so she confusingly turned back and looked at Aakesh.
"Read the rules," He said and then pointed again. She turned around and noticed a board near the counter. She read the rules and then looked at Aakesh.
"No Bargaining," He then said.
"Owner, but the price truly is too outrageous," Maria argued.
"Read the third rule!" Aakesh responded expressionlessly.
After reading the rule, she wanted nothing more than to rush and beat up the store owner, but she controlled herself. Whenever she looked at the owner, she felt she was standing in front of a mountain.
She only begrudgingly looked at Aakesh. He ignored her look and said, "So what pill do you want to buy? And you can only buy three of the pill at most."
"Even affording one is too much for me, let alone three," She thought in her heart but didn't speak out loud.
She then used her Qi, and the next moment, a red pouch appeared in her hand. It was the pouch in which she carried the gold and Primal stones.
After calculating the last of Primal stones, she calculated 51 inferior stones. She also had around a hundred platinum coins and three thousand gold coins, but Aakesh refused to take coins in place of the stones.
She only had enough stones to buy a single dantian healing pill. She looked at Aakesh once again with a pleading expression but was disappointed when he looked expressionlessly at her. She also thought to use seduction to reduce the price, but she refused it the next moment. It was too much for her self pride, and she also believed that Aakesh wouldn't show any reaction toward her body.
"Give me one dantian healing pill," She told Aakesh as she begrudgingly pushed 50 Primal stones toward him.