“My father is not interested in the addictive cigarettes, alcohol, or drugs. He does not have any passion for girls or gambling, either. He is not even a maniac in training. He does not have any long-lasting habit, except that he likes to eat a ‘Star Spot Red Fire Oyster’ as a snack after work every day.”
Li Yao raised his eyebrow. “What is a Star Spot Red Fire Oyster? Is it very precious?”
“Not very precious,” Jin Xinyue said. “The Star Spot Red Fire Oyster is a sea animal that grows in the ‘Red Fire Bay’, a bay on the coastline of the Gold Crow Kingdom. It is both fresh and succulent. Just cut it open with a knife and dip it in the local seawater, and the food will be ready.
“It is said that a half-active volcano is at the bottom of the Red Fire Bay. The special minerals spurted out by the undersea volcano add different constituents to the water there, which is the cause of such a delicious food.
“Personally, I’ve never been a fan of it.
“The Star Spot Red Fire Oyster is a popular dish among the nobles of the Gold Crow Kingdom, not only because its flavor, but also because of the fun you have when you eat it.
“First of all, the shell of the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster has stripes that looks like fire and shooting stars. The stripes of every Star Spot Red Fire Oyster are entirely different. Everybody can enjoy and appreciate the stripes before they eat the food. The shells can be used to make decorations. It is quite an elegant lifestyle.
“Secondly, the two pieces of the shell of the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster bite each other very hard. One can only open them by the special knife with special techniques and patience. If one is really skilled, there will be a pleasant sound when the oyster is opened. However, if one opens it with brute force, they will not have the privilege of hearing the sound.
“Most importantly, there are occasionally crystals that look like pearls in the meat of the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster. We call them the ‘Red Balls’. The Red Balls are not anything precious, but they are extremely brilliant and beautiful. On their face, there are ever-changing patterns. If you aim the balls at the source of light, you will see a different pattern in every different angle. It could not be more spectacular.
“According to the traditions of the Gold Crow Kingdom, it is a very auspicious sign to meet a ‘Red Ball’ in the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster. There are even legends where the Red Balls were used in fortune telling in ancient times.
“Therefore, many experts of the Feather Clan have a habit of eating the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster every day. They might not be attracted by the flavor of the delicious food but are merely relaxing themselves with the tedious process of eating and the leisure when playing with the shell and the Red Ball.
“My father is no exception. Although he appears to be a machine, he is a living creature after all. After a day of busy work handling all kinds of affairs, he tends to be anxious and exhausted, too. Therefore, it has become a special relaxation method for him to have some Star Spot Red Fire Oysters every night.”
Li Yao narrowed his eyes, in which brilliance was bouncing like fire. He pondered and asked, “Is the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster your father eats unusual? Is it the same as what others eat?”
Jin Xinyue thought hard for a moment. “The Star Spot Red Fire Oyster only grows in the Red Fire Bay because it requires the nourishment of the undersea volcano. It cannot be farmed. The productivity is quite low.
“My father is the leader of the Feather Clan. Naturally, the Star Spot Red Fire Oysters that are the largest and looks most splendid, and those that the experienced fishermen believe to have ‘Red Balls’, are specially supplied to him.”
“Then, according to your estimation, after your father became the commander-in-chief of the coalition army of demons, even though he is far away from the Gold Crow Kingdom, do you think he will still keep the habit?”
Jin Xinyue nodded. “I think he will. Before he became the commander-in-chief, my father often went to Heavenly Path City for business and sometimes lived in Heavenly Path City for a long time. At that time, special flying demon beasts were designated to ship the Star Spot Red Fire Oysters to him by air. After all, the Gold Crow King masters the forces in the sky. Transportation by air is quite convenient and not very costly. Since he is the leader of the Feather Clan, such a hobby is not too extravagant.”
Li Yao blinked. “The food is delivered by air every day, not every few days?”
Jin Xinyue smiled and said, “You may not know this, Master, but the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster is the most vulnerable food. Once it leaves the seawater where it grows, it will decay within a few hours. Even if it is soaked in the original seawater, it will still not survive one day. Keeping them in the preservation rune arrays does not help, either.
“Freezing rune arrays can make the food last longer, but freezing and unfreezing will rid the food of its original flavor. With my father’s identity and position, wouldn’t be beneath him to eat such food?
“Therefore, when he lived in Heavenly Path City, the flying demon beasts shipped the raw Star Spot Red Fire Oysters as quickly as possible, sometimes with the help of teleportation arrays, at dusk every day. They would only need three hours to get to him.”
After hearing that, Li Yao took a long breath in relief. His lips curled into a mysterious smile as he said, “Therefore, after the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster is fished up, it will be shipped to your father as quickly as possible. Since the time is very short, there will not be too many examination procedures, will there?”
Jin Xinyue was dazed. She bulged her eyes and exclaimed, “Master, do you want”
Li Yao thought for a moment and confirmed with her, “Is it possible that somebody will open all the Star Spot Red Fire Oysters first so that you father will enjoy the meat directly?”
Jin Xinyue shook her head quickly. “Absolutely not. When the nobles of the Gold Crow Kingdom enjoy the Star Spot Red Fire Oyster, it is the appearance of the food that they savor first. Then, they will have their fun by opening the shell slowly and looking for the ‘Red Ball’. It is not just the mouthful of meat that they are interested in. If the Star Spot Red Fire Oysters are opened in advance, the flavor of the meat will certainly change after it is exposed to the air for a long time, not to mention that all the fun will be gone. Wouldn’t it be a huge bummer?
“Everybody eats the food on their own. It is a tradition that has lasted thousands of years.”
“Then we’ve got a solution!” Li Yao slapped his thigh and took a deep breath to calm himself down. “Listen up. This is what we are going to do next.
“First of all, I am going to pump a syringe of blood and marrow from you. Rest assured. You are now in the Core Formation Stage after all. The marrow you lose will be refilled after a moment of rest.
“I planned to bring you back to the last base of the Blade of Chaos, but things have changed now. We cannot stay here for long, and there is no time for such a long journey.
“We can only store your blood and marrow in special biochemical storage tanks and put the tanks in the third rendezvous point so that Yuchi Ba and the rest of them will bring them back to the base.
“The Fire Ant King has already grasped a lot of experimental data and files regarding the ‘Demon God Virus’, including most of the genome. Soon, they will also have your blood and marrow, which contain the Divine Blood of Chaos. Let’s hope that they can produce vaccines and antidotes as quickly as possible!
“I will brief them on our latest progress and upcoming operations. I believe that Han Tuhu and Suo Chaolong, as two experts in tactics, will know what to do next!
“After the storage tanks are ready, we will go to Heavenly Path City and sneak into the crowded lower city, where we will make the most thorough preparations for our meeting with your father!
“After everything is set, we will go to the Red Fire Bay!
“But first of all, do you know of a place that houses tremendous crystals and magical equipment? Debris from the Heaven’s Origin Sector will work, too. I am in need of a lot of materials!”
Jin Xinyue was dazed for a moment before she replied, “A thousand and four hundred kilometers to our southeast, there is Ultimate Arms City. A great number of weapons, guns, crystal tanks, and even crystal suits that were captured in the Heaven’s Origin Sector are piled up there.
“All the magical equipment that is captured will be examined and tested in Ultimate Arms City. The repairable equipment will be picked out for the use of the coalition army of demons. The trophies that are beyond repair will serve as ‘targets’ or be dismantled into raw materials. Sometimes, they are replicated, too.
“Over the past hundreds of years, the Heaven’s Origin Sector has gradually surpassed the Blood Demon Sector in terms of weapon technology. This is more or less a way to supplement the gears of the coalition army of demons.
“But I wonder, what do you need the debris for?”
“I am going to produce bombs.” Li Yao licked his lips and said casually, “More crystal bombs.”
Ten days later, in the upper district of Heavenly Path City
As the ‘Red Tide Plan’ was gradually set in motion, a second command center had been established in the commander-in-chief’s office. The vast commander center was packed with the biochemical brains that boasted the highest performance. Countless biochemical nerves were crawling on the walls like crimson vines. There were even the mainframe crystal processors that had been smuggled or captured from the Heaven’s Origin Sector. Light beams were blossoming above the heads of the thousand staff and generals. The bouncing numbers and changing shadows interweaved into unpredictable expressions on their faces.
Jin Tuyi was surrounded by an enormous circular light beam. More than ten biochemical nerves were connected to his brain and spine deeply like vipers from all the directions, sending the information provided by the main biochemical brains into his head incessantly. Billions of entries of data, images, and videos were flooding inside his brain uncontrollably. Despite the body build of the high-level demon emperor, he would still sometimes grimace in pain.
It was through such a method of information transmission, which bordered on torture, that he managed to master the most critical intelligence about the Heaven’s Origin Sector and the Blood Demon Sector within a breath, including the latest updates on all the main-force troops of the Blood Demon Sector, the status of the defense lines of the Heaven’s Origin Sector, the traces of the sixteen crystal suit legions of the federation, and so on.
However, some of the information was true, some false. How much of the information was true, how much was false, how much of the information was true but had been leaked by the enemy intentionally, and how much of the information was false and yet was still telling what was on the enemy’s mind Everything would have to be determined by his own head.
That was the responsibility of the commander-in-chief of the coalition army!