Chapter 100: Fast Training
The Pyro Canine struggled in the hot lava and shrieked at the top of its lungs. Like most canine pets, this one had learned how to scare off its opponents by roaring at them. At this moment, however, it only sounded like a terrified puppy being bullied.
Its flame-red fur could not help it withstand the deadly heat as it was instantly ignited. In a few seconds, the dog turned into a scorching ball of fire and disappeared under the surface.
The other still living pets looked at the sad fate of their partner with widened eyes and opened jaws.
Their contract made it clear that Su Ping was their new master for the moment. As pets loved and cared for by their original owners, they felt as if they had been condemned to hell overnight. The man in front of them was a terrible pet abuser or something even worse. He had just killed one of them without the slightest bit of mercy.
Using the power of their contract, Su Ping called his next target over, which was a Blue Spark Cat. This one was another popular fire-type pet with proficiency for speed. It was currently at the fourth rank, while it had the potential of reaching the sixth rank with enough training.
The cat stared at Su Ping with its enlarged violet eyes and slowly walked his way.
Copying what he did a moment ago, he sent the creature down into the lava below.
The poor creature puffed up into a fur ball and went inside the red substance of death with no way of fighting back. Its hysterical meowing soon came to a stop as the charred remains of its body vanished from view.
The remaining two pets huddled together and trembled.
Su Ping intended for these pets to grow sturdier against fire and to have them experience what death felt like. It would be too late if they went into similar situations when exploring barren areas with their owners.
The third pet—an Obsidian Frog—crawled his way step by step as slowly as possible.
“Don’t waste time. It won’t help you.”
Another clean kick.
The frog managed to hop above the heavy liquid several times like a skipping pebble before its limbs were burned off and it died.
The Flame Lion cub that stayed behind had wet itself in its own urine. This one had accepted the inescapable death with a look of true despair.
Kick, burn and death.
The four pets reappeared beside Su Ping, and he pushed them off the edge again before they realized what was happening.
The Flame Lion was a bit heavier than the others. As it “dove,” several drops of lava reached Su Ping’s body. He was quite surprised to find out that he wasn’t burned at all. The lava was unpleasantly hot, but he could endure it just fine.
He crouched down and also tested the lava with a finger.
There was no need to pull back; the temperature was bearable, unlike what he had imagined.
My Solar Bulwark is working, I guess.
He had achieved the first rank of the skill in the past few days, making his body as durable as someone of the fifth rank. Combined with the fact that Golden Crows loved fire, Su Ping’s fire resistance had grown to quite an impressive degree.
He reached further down, until his entire hand was inside the lava.
It was… good. It felt like having a hot bath.
He removed his clothes and sat down at the edge of the platform to soak his feet in the lava.
A pleasing sense traveled along his legs and reached his body, causing him to shudder in delight. He felt how his body was absorbing fire elements from the lava, which in turn improved his Solar Bulwark. This was probably made possible by the Golden Crows’ nature, who were known to consume fire to grow up.
The resurrected pets saw him naked and were briefly surprised, before they remembered what was going on.
Again, Su Ping forced them to continue “bathing.”
The restraining power of the pet contracts was not completely infallible. There were occasional cases in which pets could harm their owners. The Pyro Canine seemed to be going down this path right then. Upon hearing Su Ping’s order, it bared its teeth at him instead.
When Su Ping tried kicking it again, it bit his ankle and latched onto his leg.
Without minding the almost negligible pain, Su Ping moved his leg to hurl the dog away. The creature was easily shaken off because its teeth barely went inside his skin.
Su Ping’s current body was completely invulnerable against anything at the fourth rank or below. Not to mention that the four pets he had brought were all of the fire type.
Unable to resist, the pets cycled through life and death repeatedly.
They died several hundred times or so in two hours. While at it, they tried to learn how to last longer in the lava pool, which eventually allowed them to paddle in the lava for a minute or two. Meanwhile, their resistance against fire also grew, which was just what Su Ping hoped to achieve.
His training didn’t involve any complicated tactics or knowledge. By sending the pets to their deaths, they would naturally study how to do better. As simple as that. This way, even the slowest pet would be forced to come up with new properties or evolve accordingly.
To make his job faster, Su Ping simply jumped off and started swimming in the lava, so the pets directly “joined” him every time they came back to life.
None of them were attempting to resist now, after seeing the futility of it. Their only thought was to live longer after every attempt, hoping to satisfy the human who seemed to be more of a fire-type Astral Pet than themselves.
Five hours later, the pets were able to safely hold out in the lava for eight minutes. The lava could no longer kill them because eight minutes were enough for them to reach the nearest floating rock.
Seeing this, Su Ping told them to stop so he could check the other parts of this cultivation plane. The training was already done.
An ordinary training session required him to either improve a pet’s Combat Strength rating by at least 0.33, or a new skill had to be taught. At the moment, the four pets had successfully grasped a skill called Flame Coat, which worked similarly to the Lightning Rat’s “lightning coat.” This skill could be further improved into “Flame Armor” in the future.
Also, the Pyro Canine was slightly smarter than its companions because it gained an extra skill, which was Flame Dragon’s Roar.
Since the job was done, Su Ping could leave the cultivation plane and deal with the other pets, but this would be a waste since he still had about 17 hours to check out of this place. He planned to look around and perhaps gather some materials he could sell.
He failed to find anything worth taking, though. There was nothing apart from a few wild fire-type Astral Pets of various levels.
He was sent back to his shop when the timer ran out.
He died 12 times during the exploration, all of which were caused by high-rank pets and even Beast Kings. He could have taken Little Skeleton with him but didn’t do so, because there was little benefit for it in a cultivation plane for fire-type pets.
Su Ping dressed himself again and phoned the owners of the trained pets before he collected and prepared another batch of pets.
A day in a cultivation plane was equal to an hour in reality. When he returned to the store, Su Ping saw a young man waiting in front of the shop with a worried look, probably because the shop was closed when he was still in a training session, and this man thought he had abandoned the job.
“You’re the only one?” Su Ping looked around and didn’t see anyone else. “But I called four of you to come.”
The young man gave him an embarrassed smile. “They all came, but they headed to another street to hang out when they didn’t find you. Should I call them over?”
“Yeah, do it.”
Zhang Baoxing followed Su Ping inside while texting. “You already trained my Pyro Canine? But I just handed it to you this morning.”
“Well, it’s the afternoon now. Is there a problem?”
Zhang Baoxing frowned. Problem? Of course there’s a problem! Did this man give my pet some dog food and think it’s a proper training??
I bought my Pyro Canine for a hundred thousand, and he only spent a few hours training it?
Zhang Baoxing decided to wait for his friends to come before arguing with Su Ping.
Soon, the other three arrived.
Without wasting any time, Su Ping presented them with their pets.
“The training is… done?” The four people all looked unhappy because they all believed that Su Ping was tricking them. While they were too worried having wasted their money, they failed to notice that their pets were almost crying upon seeing them.
Su Ping simply ordered the Pyro Canine to use Flame Coat.
The temporary pet contract had already been terminated, yet the dog immediately heeded the order out of instinct, as if Su Ping had just pushed some kind of sensitive button planted deep inside its heart.
Followed by three more “poofs,” the other three pets also did the same and brightened up the interior of the shop with their new skill, while the customers who wanted to sue Su Ping watched the pets with widened eyes.
“That’s Flame Coat?” Zhang Baoxing recognized the skill first. “But that’s a middle-rank skill. They learned it in less than a day??”
“Your Pyro Canine also learned how to use Flame Dragon’s Roar, by the way. But I can’t show you here because it’ll mess up my shop. Find somewhere vacant and try it out yourself later.”
“What?? That’s two middle-rank skills!”
“What about us??” the other three men quickly asked. They no longer doubted Su Ping.
Su Ping glanced at them. “They went through the same training. But the rest of them were… let’s say, not as talented as the Pyro Canine. They all gained a higher resistance to fire, though. From now on, common fire-based attacks will no longer work against them.”
Three of them looked jealous, thinking of the skills learned by the Pyro Canine, though they weren’t going to complain. More defense sounded pretty useful in any case.
Zhang Baoxing affectionately shook Su Ping’s hand. “Mister Su, can—can I keep my dog here for longer? Let me see, I’ll pay you an extra 20,000 as a tip!”
Su Ping agreed right away. He couldn’t convert the “tip” into energy points, though he would be glad to give the money to his mother. It was high time he offered some sort of financial help to his family.
“A pet can only undergo one training session per day,” the system warned him.
Su Ping curled his lips.
“…This is to prevent the shop from being exclusively dominated by a rich customer. The ultimate goal of the pet shop is to serve people from all walks of life. Please broaden your vision, host.”
Well, I can understand the first part, but is it necessary to judge me like that?? Su Ping thought, before saying to Zhang Baoxing, “I can only train it once per day. Come back tomorrow.”
Zhang Baoxing stepped back in disappointment. If he could, he would even pay a visit every day from then on.
“We can all come again, right?” the other three asked.
The customers took their pets and left, after carefully remembering the address of the “treasure vault” they had just found. They finally knew how that particular Lightning Rat grew to be so strong. With such efficient training, their pets could do the same!
The only problem was that they couldn’t easily afford specialized training sessions.
While walking away, their pets took the lead and tried to urge their masters to move faster.
Su Ping closed the door and summoned more customers to pick up the second group of pets, while not forgetting to remind them that they should wait a bit should he go absent. He preferred to avoid wasting time while waiting for customers.
After answering questions from several prospective customers, he bought more temporary contracts and began training the third group.
The remaining pets were not necessarily of the same element, but close. Finding cultivation planes that befitted all of them would be a relatively easy task.
Spending a few days inside cultivation planes tired him out. He was eager to get the shop to level 2 as soon as possible, so the “Dummy Trainers” could help him.
The good thing was, training pets personally was rewarding to him as well. He learned a lot from all the confrontations and deaths he went through.