As the daughter of Firefly’s captain, and being a skilled expert of refining herself, Professor Tang had been through many big events on Firefly, which was almost an independent world itself.
However, after she walked to the door of the seemingly unattractive refining workshop, she somehow felt nervous for no good reason.
What kind of team of refiners would have purchased so many tricky materials and magical equipment in a row?
The door of the refining workshop opened soundlessly in front of her. She was embraced by… a certain weird fragrance with a slightly sour smell.
Professor Tang had been in touch with more than a hundred thousand materials. She knew the form and scent of most of the materials in the universe. However, she found it impossible to tell the source of the sour fragrance. She could not help but feel astonished.
Even more ill at ease, Professor Tang walked into the workshop solemnly after taking a deep breath of the sour, fragrant air.
It was the refining workshop of the highest level that the magical equipment center rented to the public. The workshop was divided into two suites, the internal one being a negative-pressure, dust-free room, where the highly precise operations would be performed.
Right now, the internal suite was empty. However, it could be clearly seen through the glass window that some materials and magical equipment had been processed and were floating on the rune arrays waiting to be tested.
Seeing the materials, Professor Tang’s eyes quickly constricted, and she almost exclaimed in shock.
The Moon Soft Gel has been processed? Such colors, such shapes, and such splendid reflections when it is flowing. This has been so perfectly handled!
Also, the ‘Ocean Spirit Gel’, the ‘Seven Emperors Wood’, the ‘Cave Sound Stone’, and more than ten other materials have been immaculately polished. The extreme performance of every material has been exerted!
How is it possible? There can’t have been two hours since the buyer purchased our materials. Normal refiners would have to spend three to five days considering how to deal with the materials appropriately. How could anyone have processed them so quickly?
There’s also this—
Professor Tang moaned like a cat.
Isn’t this the ‘Super Quiet Fixed Rotor’ dismantled after the explosion of the ‘Planet Penetration Cannon’ due to overloading? Didn’t the specialists determine that it was beyond repair? I was there, too. The ‘Super Quiet Fixed Rotor’ was also examined by my own hands. It was utterly useless!
How? How has it been repaired, and so quickly?
Also, what is the owner of the workshop trying to do with the ‘Super Quiet Fixed Rotor’? Is there anybody else who knows how to use such a rare device?
Professor Tang pressed her chest hard, trying to hold back the shock that was coming at her like waves.
If she were less determined, she would have suspected that somebody had cast a spell upon her, and she was mired in a world of illusions. How could such absurdities take place in reality?
Chiliu, chiliu, chiliu, chiliu…
Right then, blood-freezing noises came over from a corner of the outer suite, catching her attention.
She struggled to turn her head inch by inch.
Professor Tang had thought that the buyer who had purchased and refined so many materials must have been a whole team of professional, experienced, well-trained refiners.
The myriad of cutting-edge facilities and magical equipment in the luxury refining workshop were prepared for an entire team, too.
However, there was only one guy who was leaning against a corner of the refining workshop lazily, one that was rather… unique and untraditional.
Professor Tang’s eyes moved from the blue-and-white slippers on the man’s feet, to the variegated beach pants, and then to the sloppy shirt that was usually worn by older people. The only thing that proved his identity was a refining uniform that was similar to a surgical gown outside of his pants and shirt.
Professor Tang felt an urge to stab into her own eyes.
Chiliu, chiliu, chiliu, chiliu.
The guy was actually holding a bowl of… what seemed to be known as ‘instant noodles’. He was sucking the curled noodles one mouthful after another. The sour smell that almost filled the entire room came from the pickles in the bowl!
Professor Tang’s brain went blank, occupied by the seemingly abundant trimmings on the deep purple bowl of noodles and the weird noise when the guy was sucking the noodles.
What—what the heck?
Isn’t such foul, simple food already outdated even in this remote area at the edge of the cosmos? Everybody now takes half-fresh food whose water has been instantly locked. Where exactly has he found the old food that has probably expired, and why is he enjoying it so wholeheartedly?
What—what is this black thing exactly? It can’t be a legendary egg, right? How long has this egg been kept?
Professor Tang was on the brink of collapse.
Li Yao was having a great time with the instant noodles and the egg comfortably. Although the flavor and nutrition were not so good, it was still the same feeling from more than a hundred years ago!
He remembered that, before he became a Cultivator, on the train north to the Grand Desolate Plateau, the conversation between him and the refiner Ding Yin had taken place over a bowl of such noodles.
When he smelled the instant noodles, countless incidents of the past flowed back to his heart. It could not be replaced by any fine cuisines in the world!
Seeing that Professor Tang was already dumbfounded, Li Yao could only speak first while holding the noodle bowl. “Do you have all the materials on your list?”
He did not intend to expose his traces, but a few materials that Professor Tang had offered were indeed intriguing. Some of them were even rare materials that he had seen in Ou Yezi’s memory fragments and could never be found in the Star Glory Federation.
With those materials, he would be able to significantly strengthen everybody’s crystal suit magical equipment.
After weighing the pros and cons, it did not seem a bad idea to meet with the experts of refining from Firefly.
After all, they would have to compete with the Imperium of True Human Beings together in the future as comrades anyway.
Hearing Li Yao’s voice, looking at the very familiar template face, and then confirming with the slippers on his feet, Professor Tang felt that lightning was striking inside her head. She exclaimed, “It was you!”
Li Yao sucked another mouthful of noodles while he watched Professor Tang’s expression changing from confusion to shock, from shock to excitement, from excitement to fear, and from fear to admiration…
He blinked and delivered a forkful of noodles to his mouth again.
He seemed to have been recognized.
But it was not a big problem. After all, he was using a false identity and an anonymous crystal card. After he left the Four Sectors Magical Equipment Center, nobody would know who he was.
“I thought you were here to trade materials.” Li Yao slightly frowned. “Do you have all the materials on the list? If not, let’s not waste each other’s time.”
“Yes, I do!” Professor Tang was so excited that she was barely able to control herself. She nodded quickly and said, “I have all the materials listed just now, and the prices are definitely reasonable, senior! Was—was this ‘Super Quiet Fixed Rotor’ repaired by you? That’s amazing. We tried to repair the internal rune arrays with the ‘Stars Dragging Moon Pulling Arts’ but failed all the time. What kind of marvelous technique did you use to repair it, senior?”
“I used the ‘Stars Dragging Moon Pulling Arts’, too,” Li Yao answered.
Professor Tang was shocked. “How is it possible?”
Li Yao picked up the remaining half of the egg and casually said, “It is possible, when your hands are fast enough.”
“When my hands are fast enough…”
Looking at Li Yao’s plain hands that were no different from the hands of regular Cultivators, Professor Tang was caught in confusion again.
“If you do have those materials, I’m really interested in making a deal with you.”
Seeing that Professor Tang was absent-minded again, Li Yao could only shift the topic back to business. Thinking for a moment, he said, somewhat embarrassed, “But while I do have enough capital, it will only be in position in one to two days. So, can we check the quality of the materials first and then finish the payment later? After all, I’ll be staying here for a long time and will definitely not run away with those materials.”
Professor Tang was at a loss. After she realized that the taciturn, mysterious man who had been standing next to her in the test field half a day ago was actually such an appalling master of refining, materials were not important to her at all!
If she could make friends with such a master, what was the big deal even if those materials were offered to him for free?
However, was the man who was feeding on instant noodles and egg really a master of refining? Could there be some sort of mistake?
Who was he exactly? Was he a hermit hiding at the edge of the cosmos?
The nature of a refiner in the blood of Professor Tang was fully activated. She summoned her courage and meant to ask Li Yao whether or not he was the one who had played tricks on the Azure Thunder.
However, the reminders of Chu Chongjiu and Nie Siyuan were still echoing in her ears, which finally kept the basic rationality in her and stopped her from proposing the question recklessly.
Thinking quickly, Professor Tang changed the way of asking and respectfully said, “Senior, the materials are absolutely fine. I’ll bring you to our material warehouse later so that you can pick them. Money is not going to be a problem!
“Half a day ago, when I showed my humble skills in the test field half a day ago, you were there, too, weren’t you? Would you care to comment on my adjustment on the Azure Thunder?”
Sipping the soup of the instant noodles, Li Yao realized what Professor Tang was doing.
She was hoping that he would pay his ‘earnest money’ with his comments.
It was quite fair. After all, it would be outrageous to demand them to deliver their rare materials for nothing, would it not?
“I didn’t catch the latter half of your performance, but judging from the performance at the beginning, it should be quite good. The Azure Thunder Battlesuit had already been adjusted quite well by Wu Yaxuan, but you were still able to find new potential in it. That was quite incredible of you,” Li Yao said drily.
“Senior!” Professor Tang’s eyes suddenly grew sharp. She took a deep breath and clenched her fists. “I am sincerely hoping to receive enlightenment from you, senior. Please do not care about my feelings and just point out my mistakes and negligence! I—I would like to offer a pure natural ‘Green Star Ancient Square Stone’ for seniors’ enlightenment!”
Li Yao was slightly dazed. He sucked a noodle at the corner of his mouth and stared at Professor Tang. “Your adjustment was indeed incredible. I was not speaking to you perfunctorily just now. However, just like Wu Yaxuan, you were greatly wrong on a fundamental level. So, your endeavor is not worth commenting on at all.”
“What!” Professor Tang was dumbfounded as if she were hit by lightning. “Just like Wu Yaxuan, I was greatly wrong on the fundamental level?”