Now that Su Changfa was putting it in such a way, Li Yao could not find a reason to refuse him.
Besides, he was quite interested in Lu Qingchen, a unique, mysterious young man who did not seem to fit in the world.
Lu Zui, Lu Qingchen’s grandfather, was the most sophisticated, most frightening, and most pathetic opponent that Li Yao had ever come across.
He was almost an ‘Immortal Cultivator’ born and raised in the federation. He proved with his doings that an abyss and a mental devil were lurking at the bottom of everybody’s heart. One moment of carelessness, and they could be doomed forever.
Right now, Lu Zui had been duly punished, and Lu Qingchen’s foster father was still serving time in prison on a mining star at the edge of the Flying Star Sector.
Accusing the family members of a criminal was not a practice in the federation. Lu Qingchen’s birth parents were credible soldiers who sacrificed themselves valiantly in a beast tide outbreak. Naturally, Lu Qingchen was not to answer for his foster parent’s crimes.
Lu Qingchen turning into Su Changfa’s true disciple was something beyond Li Yao’s expectations.
However, after vetting Lu Qingchen’s background carefully, Li Yao could not help but feel that it was perfectly normal for the guy to waver between the two different ideologies.
Li Yao and the authorities did not stop Su Changfa from recruiting a true disciple.
On one hand, such a thing could never be stopped. Even if they did not reveal a real ‘master-disciple’ relationship to anybody, Su Changfa could still teach him and offer enlightenment in secret.
A violent prohibition would only be a sign of their own weakness. Lu Qingchen might be stopped on the surface, but the only result would be that more young people would secretly join Su Changfa’s cause.
Now that they had decided to regard Su Changfa as a ‘negative example’, they certainly would not be so petty. Besides, they could also observe the Immortal Cultivators’ heritage pattern from Su Changfa and Lu Qingchen’s relationship, which could be beneficial for the competition with the Imperium of True Human Beings in the future, too.
Other than the conflicts of thoughts, Lu Qingchen, who had been raised by Lu Zui, was indeed a very capable young man.
After Ding Lingdang gathered the family members of the participants of the Patriots Partnership and established the Patriots Front, Lu Qingchen had joined the organization without a second thought.
Ding Lingdang was a pure warrior. Other than her unparalleled personal charisma, she had neither the capabilities, nor the interest, time, and energy, for the construction and management of the organization.
Most of the time, the jobs were entrusted to the appropriate talents among the family members. Lu Qingchen was naturally one of them.
After only a few years, although he had not graduated from college yet, he had already started playing a vital role in the Patriots Front. Right now, he was the PR manager of the ‘Young Federation Association’, a periphery organization of the Patriots Front. He was almost a new, rising star.
Li Yao was not wary or cautious of Lu Qingchen just because the young man was raised by Lu Zui.
With his Cultivation and social position, would it not be hilarious for him to be deeply vigilant of a college student who only just stepped into his twenties?
Now that Lu Qingchen hoped to make a personal choice after profoundly learning the path of the Cultivators and that of the Immortal Cultivators, Li Yao was willing to satisfy his carefulness and study spirits.
Li Yao had every faith in the Cultivators’ path. He believed that Lu Qingchen would certainly make the most correct choice.
Today was Li Yao and Su Changfa’s last session regarding the studies of colonization.
“When you are new to a foreign land, you will have to fake the identity of a native of the local civilization in order to sneak in and observe their social form and capability. Then, what kind of identity is most suitable?” Su Changfa asked.
“If possible, it will be best to act as a member of the half-civilized ethic groups that are located at the fringe of the local civilization,” Li Yao replied.
“Why?” Su Changfa raised an eyebrow.
“After the booming development in the age of the Star Ocean Imperium,” Li Yao elaborated, “all three thousand Sectors were highly developed and civilized. Although the Star Ocean Imperium completely crashed in the gory Armageddon Rebellion, a lot of relics and secret treasures were left behind.
“Based on those relics and secret treasures, even the Sectors with only one planet should still be able to develop a thorough organizational structure and an advanced social form!
“In such a world, the prosperous area at the center of the civilization must have a large population and be under the government’s strict control. The noble families have their own lineages. An unparalleled expert jumping out of nowhere would certainly raise suspicion. Somebody will be bound to trace their origins and look for their master and their background. So, it will be very easy for them to be seen through!
“Therefore, if possible, it’s be best to disguise as an expert from the barbaric groups at the edge of the civilization. On one hand, such an identity has far fewer loopholes. On the other hand, the stranger’s wariness will be reduced, and it will be easier to collect intelligence about the stranger.”
“Do you have to appear as a top expert? Can you pretend to be an unattractive, incapable civilian?” Su Changfa’s eyes suddenly shined as he asked his next question.
“No,” Li Yao replied. “An ant can never understand an elephant’s world. If I pretend to be an anonymous Mr. Nobody, how can I find out the top warriors and the political situation at the core of the world?
“There are only two ways to figure out the real capabilities of a world in the shortest amount of time.
“I can either find a top warrior of the world, ambush him, assume his identity, and walk around as him.
“Or, I can embark on my path to the center of the world from the desolate area of the world as a warrior of the barbaric groups.”
“Will you be able to find out the overall capability of the unknown civilization after you reach their core center?” Su Changfa smiled and continued.
Li Yao shook his head and said, “Not necessarily. If the Sector has been at peace all the time, and the experts all keep a low profile, then I may not be able to tell their real capabilities even if we sit and talk nicely while enjoying the wine.”
“What should you do in such a case?” Su Changfa asked the most critical question.
“In such a case, I will have to find a way to intensify the conflicts and change the peaceful status quo,” Li Yao said calmly. “The most commonly used, and probably the best, approach is to tempt all the experts of the unknown civilization with fake ‘treasures’ or ‘relics’!
“The explorer can prepare a batch of vivid ‘fake treasures’ in advance, preferably mixing the real scraps of the secret treasures of the Star Ocean Imperium and even the primeval era, and bury them into a certain place of the target world. Then, the explorer can release the news in every place of the world, claiming that a certain place has an invaluable relic.
“Not only are there priceless treasures inside the relic, there are also techniques, medicines, and magical equipment that all Cultivators dream about. Whoever finds their way into the relic and receives the legacies will immediately become the dominator of the Sector!
“Where there are people, there is conflict. Even the experts who are uninterested in the secret treasures and the relic will not stand by and watch their opponents gaining access to the treasures while doing nothing. Therefore, all the experts will crowd toward the relic. Beyond their control, they would be more and more deeply mired!
“The explorer will observe coldly in the teams of the treasure hunters and exhaust the top warriors of the unknown civilization in the quest. Even if they are not exhausted, he will still be able to see the real trump cards of the Sector in order to ascertain the following operation plans.”
Su Changfa listened without leaving a comment. Finally, he nodded and said with a smile, “Very good. Very good. Li Yao, you are a completely qualified adventurer in the sea of stars right now even in the standard of the Imperium of True Human Beings!”
At 11:20 p.m., outside of Kunlun, deep inside the crab nebula, inside the space zone near the gravity range of the pulsar…
The three months of special training had finally been concluded. Li Yao finished all the preparations for the exploration mission deep into the dark nebula.
There were only ten days left before he would set off for the farthest, longest, and perhaps most soul-stirring interstellar teleportation in the history of the three Sectors!
There was only one last thing left to do right now.
Li Yao looked at the pulsar not far away.
Through the observation of his spiritual root, he did see the tides of lights made of a hundred million colors blossoming like lotus flowers and burning like an ocean of flames as described by Ding Lingdang. They were like thunderstorms, like thousands of primeval beasts that rushed from the beginning of the universe to the infinities of the future, sweeping across the entire universe!
The birth and destruction of the whole universe seemed to be displaying right in front of his eyes.
Indescribable horror, emotion, loneliness, and peacefulness flooded into Li Yao’s body without a sound.
Summoning the spiritual energy inside his limbs and internal organs, Li Yao forced it to flood into the depths of his brain incessantly. By stimulating his soul, he produced his own small universe, which was echoing, resonating, and melding with the universe in the outside world.
In a trance and not knowing exactly what was happening outside, he finally perceived the great harmony of the universe after who knew how long.
Calming himself down and focusing his attention on his abdomen, Li Yao bound the great harmony with his soul and pressed the whole essence of life and his understanding about everything in the universe into the great harmony. He then urged it to move downward to crash at the critical part three inches below the abdomen.
In the meantime, the dynamic simulation system made of air that he formulated with his spiritual energy was also stimulating his most sensitive nerve endings.
When the most intense essence of his life and his understanding about the mysterious universe were sealed into the great harmony, his nerve endings were boosted to the maximum, too. Li Yao bellowed and, exerting all his physical strength, spurted out the great harmony!
Because of the absence of gravity, the great harmony immediately turned into translucent, bright-golden pearls.
Li Yao covered it with a special container and preserved the great harmony well.
Sensing the immense vigor of the great harmony, which was simmering inside the container and seemed like it would break out at any point, Li Yao smiled.
Both him and Ding Lingdang were in the middle of the rise of their career. They had been too busy training and studying in the past years to consider having any children.
In the future decades, the two of them were destined to travel in different Sectors, and it was unlikely for them to give birth to and raise offspring.
However, the exploration of the universe was a highly perilous endeavor after all. Li Yao did not dare to guarantee that he would certainly return in one piece.
Therefore, by preserving the essence of his life that was the strongest, most powerful, and contained all his understanding about the heaven and the earth, should anything happen to him, their blood would still be able to be passed on!