Editor: Dhael Ligerkeys
When he came back from the Chess Sea, he had a total of 5,352 Contribution Points. Later, he spent a good amount on ten Flame of Earthen Spirits and the Rift of Illusions, but dealing with the Insectoid Invasion made up for most of the usage. More accurately, Hua Ci had taken the initiative to pay him a monthly salary and bump up his total Contribution Points to five thousand. That was why he wasn’t worried about running out for the time being.
In order to speed up his learning process, Lu Ye decided to purchase another ten Flame of Earthen Spirits for the Tree of Glyphs to consume and obtain a couple more Glyphs. It was because he realized that the more Glyphs he mastered, the greater his attainment in the Way of Glyphs, and the easier he learned about everything related to Glyphs.
And it worked. His progress was already pretty fast to begin with, but these days Lady Yun could not praise him enough. On the first day, it had taken him all daylight to just barely disassemble a Glyph. But on the second day, it had only taken him four or so hours to repeat the feat. On the third day, it only took him one hour to disassemble a Glyph, and on the fifth and sixth day, he could disassemble any Glyph in just a short time.
A single Glyph no matter how complicated could no longer pose a problem to Lu Ye. So, Lady Yun tasked him to disassemble a composite Glyph. A composite Glyph was multiple types of Glyphs joined together using a special method so that they could influence one another and unleash greater effect as a result.
A composite Glyph had a much more common name. To the public, it was known as an enchantment!
In the past, Lu Ye had attempted to study enchantments to no avail. While he noticed that the enchantments were made of Glyphs, he had not received any systematic instruction regarding the Way of Glyphs at the time. Without any education, self-exploration and the Tree of Glyphs could only carry him so far.
Today, his attainment in the Way of Glyphs was much greater than before. It was all thanks to Lady Yun’s teachings.
The number of enhancements on a Spirit Artifact was equal to the number of Glyphs on its body. Take Lu Ye’s Inviolable for example. It was known as a nonuple enhancement Spirit Artifact because it had nine Glyphs engraved into its body, and they were linked using some sort of ingenious method to form a functional whole.
Lu Ye began his new exercise by disassembling a double enhancement, a.k.a two composite Glyphs that were linked together. It took only a short time before Lady Yun had to up the difficulty to triple enhancements, quadruple enhancements, quintuple enhancements and so on.
To Lu Ye, it felt like he was playing a game with Lady Yun. Lady Yun would make a “puzzle”, and he would solve it. A layman might find the task incredibly boring, but he thought it was most interesting. It was because no two disassembling processes were ever the same. Moreover, the longer he learned under Lady Yun, the more useful knowledge and techniques he was able to draw from the experience.
Meanwhile, Hua Ci was heading toward the training chambers after receiving a lesson from Shui Yuan. Just like Lu Ye, she didn’t care about leading a sophisticated life and often spent her nights in her training chamber.
Of course, life in the Outpost was a lot more comfortable than it was at Mount Ying. She did not need to set up a stall to sell her products everyday. She had plenty of junior brothers and junior sisters to dote on, and a senior sister who doted on her in turn. Her medicinal skills were improving by leaps and bounds under Shui Yuan’s guidance, and the World Spiritual Qi of the Outpost was much richer than Mount Ying’s.
She was slowly but surely falling in love with this place.
While wearing a smile so kind that it warmed the hearts of everyone who saw her, she greeted her junior brothers and sisters until she reached the entrance of her training chamber. She pushed the door open and was about to walk in when suddenly, she took a few steps backward and looked to her left and right. No, it did not look like she had suffered a memory loss. Yes, there was someone in her training chamber. But what was he doing here?
She stared at him for a few seconds before she finally realized what he was doing. She broke into a smile. Was he finally going to put his hands on their hoard? When they came back from the Chess Sea, she had wanted to send them to the nearest Divine Trade Association center and process them. However, Shui Yuan had stopped her saying that Lu Ye might have a need for them in the future. It would appear that her prediction was spot on.
Hua Ci stepped into the training chamber and closed the door. Then, she walked up to Lu Ye and saw him sitting at a corner with two piles of Storage Bags in front of him. The left pile was considerably more numerous than the right.
Hua Ci picked up one of the dozen of Storage Bags on the right pile and probed it. She immediately discovered that the Storage Bag had been unlocked, and its contents could be taken out as she pleased.
Half a month had passed since he began learning how to disassemble Glyphs from Lady Yun, and Lu Ye was still a long way from being able to breach a Grand Defensive Ward. On the other hand, the Restraining Locks on Storage Bags no longer posed a big problem to him.
In fact, most Storage Bags were sewn from the skin of a special Spirit Beast. It possessed the unique quality of expanding space upon making contact with Spiritual Power. That was why it was such a popular choice for making Storage Bags.
Add to the fact that raising the Spirit Beast was fairly easy, there were countless sects across Jiu Zhou who sold its skin as a source of revenue. There were even sects that specialized in this trade.
This was the reason Storage Bags weren’t particularly pricey; the cost was pretty low.
Each Storage Bag had a certain amount of Glyphs carved into it, and depending on the Glyphweaver’s preferences the Glyphs could differ wildly from one another. However, there was one thing they all had in common, and it was the enhancement known as the Restraining Lock.
Created using a special method, the Restraining Lock was an enhancement that caused a Storage Bag to burst into flame and be destroyed if it were to make contact with unfamiliar Spiritual Power. All Storage Bags contained a Restraining Lock, and the key to unlocking it was a cultivator’s Spiritual Power.
It should be obvious, but the enhancement was the mother of the job known as locksmith. In the past, Lu Ye had requested the locksmiths of the Divine Trade Association to unlock Storage Bags for him. Sometimes he got what he asked for, and sometimes he didn’t. Unlocking Storage Bags was risky business for the customers, so it should be treated with the same seriousness as an investment.
Lu Ye had reached the point where he was, frankly, a bit overqualified to be a locksmith. According to Lady Yun, those who were truly talented in the Way of Glyphs would never debase themselves by becoming a locksmith. That was why locksmiths were really just half-baked Glyphweavers who weren’t good enough to become true masters.
That said, locksmithing was the perfect exercise for Lu Ye to hone his skills and accumulate experience right now. While he was improving insanely fast under the tutelage of a master like Lady Yun, there was no harm in experiencing another Glyphweaver’s skill and technique.
That was why Lady Yun had told him to practice his locksmithing. In her words, there were three things all Glyphweavers must possess if they wished to go far in the Way of Glyphs. The first was talent, the second was skill, and the third was practice and experience. All of them were indispensable.
While Hua Ci was inspecting the unlocked pile of Storage Bags, Lu Ye suddenly threw the one he was holding into the air. It burst into flames before it even hit the ground and burned to ashes just a few seconds later.
Hua Ci shot him a glance. “Am I disturbing you?”
Lu Ye expressionlessly picked up another Storage Bag and continued his work. While his success rate was very high, it was hardly one hundred percent. There would be times his attempt ended in failure especially since he had just started the exercise a while ago.
So far, it looked like none of the Legates and prolegates who had participated in the Battle Royale of the Legates were particularly poor. Their Storage Bags always carried at least some Spirit Stones, Spirit Pills or Spirit Talisman Papers.
Unfortunately, he hadn’t discovered anything that even came close to blowing his mind away. Then again, he didn’t know what he expected. Everyone knew that the Battle Royale of the Legates was a high risk, high reward competition. To carry valuables on their person was to risk being killed and giving them up to the enemy. That was why most of these Storage Bags contained items that were practical in application and not too valuable.
The good news was that this was exactly what Hua Ci needed right now, not to mention that quantity was a quality of its own. With this many Storage Bags, even trash could accumulate to a point where they were worth something.
The night that followed was as deep as it was peaceful. Lu Ye kept chipping away at the Storage Bags while Hua Ci sat at the center of a Circle of Boon and cultivated.
It wasn’t until morning that Lu Ye finally unlocked all of the Storage Bags. A dozen or so were lost in the process, but all things considered it wasn’t a high failure rate. If anything, it was impressive how well he did taking into account that this was his first go at locksmithing.
[I still got room to improve though!]
Lu Ye rose to his feet and stretched a little. While walking past Hua Ci, he gave her a head rub and said, “I’m going to the Summit of Clarity. Message me if anything happens!”
As he opened the door, he was greeted by a crisp voice, “Senior sister!” There was a girl at the exit, and from the looks of it she had been waiting for a while.
Their eyes met, and He Xiyin exclaimed in astonishment, “B… Brother Lu?”
Her gaze drifted behind Lu Ye and landed on Hua Ci. The gentlewoman was currently tidying her hair. Her smile slowly turned stiff.
“You’re blocking the way!”
Lu Ye grabbed her head with one hand and moved her to the side like she was a doll. Then, he walked straight to the Sanctum of Providence.
On that day, countless people saw He Xiyin roaming the Outpost like a zombie while muttering strange words such as, “I’ve lost my chance”, “he got ahead of me” and so on…
Lu Ye’s schedule hadn’t changed too much. During the day, he still went to Lady Yun’s place to study the Way of Glyphs. When he returned to the Outpost at night though, he went to the bazaar instead of his training chamber.
The bazaar was the meeting place of the independent cultivators with Chen Yu as their manager. This hadn’t changed even after they became the initiates or associates of the Crimson Blood Sect. If anything it was a lot livelier than it used to thanks to an influx of new independent cultivators and even associates from nearby Grand Sky Coalition factions.
The bazaar’s popularity represented endless opportunities, so many disciples and independent cultivators frequented it to make a living so to speak. Of course, Lu Ye saw no reason to stop this. For starters, their sect only had one firm rule, and that was not to do anything detrimental against the Crimson Blood Sect. Add the fact that the two nearby Thousand Demon Ridge factions had been crippled, and their range of activity was greater than before. Naturally, that also meant greater income.
After arriving at the bazaar, Lu Ye sought out a quiet corner and produced a signboard he had prepared a while ago. Then, he placed it on the ground, sat down on a chair, and started reading a book in a laid back manner.
“Brother Lu!” A disciple who happened to be passing through the area caught sight of him and greeted in a hurry. He quickly noticed the signboard next to Lu Ye and read out loud, “Free locksmithing!”