Translator:Nyoi-Bo StudioEditor:Nyoi-Bo Studio
Ye Futian turned his eyes at Xue Ye and Luo Fan. He wore a strange expression as he pondered if those two were up to something.
Is there anything they aren’t telling anyone? He was puzzled as to why his two seniors came to the Alchemy Conference. His fifth brother definitely had some skills with cooking, but crafting was probably out of his league.
More and more mighty ones gathered around, and even some very renowned master armorers arrived as well. The Alchemy Conference allowed the participation of anyone below sage planes, and all of those master armorers were capable of crafting top class noble ritual implements. If they were to advance into the sage planes, they would then become capable of crafting sage level ritual implements.
Yu Ming, whom Ye Futian had fought several days before, was among the crowd. His eyes were locked onto Su Hongxiu, who was standing behind Chu Ji, never bothering to hide his affection for her.
Other than Yu Ming, there were also several other extremely renowned master armorers around. One of them was You Tu, a genius armorer from the City Lord office, and Gongsun Ye, the number one among the younger generation of armorers. There were also two others who were the focus of this year’s Alchemy Conference: Chi Lian and Master Mu Ou. However, the City Lord office definitely did not wish for Master Mu Ou to become the champion of this year’s Alchemy Conference because of his advanced age. Due to his inability to break into the sage planes, he had been crazed in his study of the armorer’s art, which resulted in his mastery of the art. However, the champion of the event would be offered the chance to marry the City Lord’s daughter. While it had been an age-old tradition of the event, the City Lord nonetheless would not want his young daughter to marry an old guy.
This time, the hand of the girl whom the City Lord office was to offer was one who was very well known throughout Alchemy City: You Xi, a girl who was known for her exceptional appearance and talent.
It was a given that should the one who reigned supreme in the Alchemy Conference end up a member of the City Lord office, he would not be marrying the daughter of the City Lord. In such cases, according to the precedence set by the previous events, the City Lord was to marry his daughter off to the one ranked second or third in the event instead.
Countless gathered under the eight Armorer’s Pillars. Figures from top forces throughout the entire Barren State gathered in the grand stands on two sides to witness the event. Those from Nantian House, Mortal World, Sword Saint Villa and others arrived, and they all took to their respective corners.
You Chi, the City Lord, sat at his designated place on top of the front stairs. He took a look at the sun hanging in the air. He stood up and took his steps forward, with two elders following him, moving down the stairs and stood beneath the City Lord. You Chi silenced the entire scene with a wave of his hand. Countless eyes were set on one spotthe one where You Chi, the City Lord, stood.
“The Alchemy Conference is held once every ten years. Today, we see people from all walks of life throughout the Barren State gather here to witness the event, and we also have tens of thousands of proud armorers participating. This is my honor.” You Chi addressed the crowd eloquently with a powerful and firm voice capable of reaching far away, enabling everyone present to hear him clearly.
“While the Alchemy Conference this time is a competition between armorers below sage planes, but all who participate will be the future of Barren State’s armorer world. What will be showcased in this Alchemy Conference will become the standard of armorers for Barren State in the future. As such, I hope everyone who is participating will give their all.” You Chi’s voice remained loud and firm as he continued, “As with the event held in the past, the top hundred will be allowed to join any armorer factions in Alchemy City to their liking; the top ten will be offered the chance to learn armorer’s art from me; the top three will be tutored by me personally, and I will craft a ritual implement for each of the top three. The champion will be offered the hand of my daughter, You Xi. Of course, the one offered these options are free to take it or leave it. There is no obligation.”
Many laughed. The event held once in ten years would no doubt showcase the highest standards for the current generation. As the representative of the armorer world, the City Lord Office of Alchemy City would also offer their best to hold the event. As such, the daughter whose hand was to be offered would need exceptional qualities. There was no one in Alchemy City who did not know of the name You Xi, and one would have to be a fool to refuse to marry her.
“What happens next is all up to you.” You Chi finished his speech and went back to his seat. The two elders at the middle of the stairs looked at the crowd. One of them lit incense and placed it before the stairs. The other announced, “You all have until the incense burns out to craft superior noble ritual implements. There will be no restrictions on the type of items crafted nor the methods used. The ones who succeed in crafting will be allowed to stay, and those who fail will be eliminated.
“You may begin.”
Many moved at the same time; the very second the elder finished his announcement. The air was filled with heat in an instant as everyone took out their own smelting furnaces to begin working on their items. While the ones who participated in the event were ones who were confident of themselves to certain extents, there were also those who wanted little more than to experience the event first hand. As such, the first one served well to eliminate all those who were only there for fun and those whose art were not up to standards. Any who managed to stay was deemed to be an elite in the world of armorers.
Ye Futian had little interest in crafting items and it was not an area he had any measure of expertise in. He turned his eyes to Luo Fan and Xue Ye and asked in a low voice, “The Alchemy Conference allows two individuals to work together?”
“It does. Some who are talented in the armorer’s art happen to be people who do not have good fire powers, or they need others to support them in other areas. There are many great armorers who have their servants around, but the number is limited to two,” Zhong Li elaborated in reply.
Ye Futian nodded in acknowledgment. He looked at the thing Luo Fan took out for smelting and blinked in disbelief. Can that work?
The thing that Luo Fan took out was a common furnace used for cooking, not a proper one for smelting.
“Those two are seniors of yours?” Zhong Li could not help but look at Xue Ye and Luo Fan as he recalled hearing Ye Futian calling them ‘senior.’ He was just as surprised as Ye Futian.
“I don’t know them.” Ye Futian slapped his hand on his head and said jokingly. This is embarrassing. How could one have seniors like that? Don’t go join the event if you don’t know how to make stuff. Dishing out a common furnace on the Alchemy Conference for smelting, just what
It was fortunate that there were too many people in the competition at that point, and few noticed them among the large crowd. Most eyes were set on the top-class master armorers, and there was hardly anyone who bothered looking at those two. Of course, even if people actually took notice of Xue Ye and Luo Fan, they would not have time to be bothered with them. They were busy at the moment, after all.
“The fire needs to be hotter. This is not going to smelt anything,” Xue Ye said.
“Get the matrix ready,” Luo Fan said.
“This is not how it is written in the books. The steps are wrong, and so is the order of smelting.”
“Who cares? It’s all good stuff here. It’s just the same with cooking, throwing everything into one pot, that is. So long as you get the matrixes right, no one can tell you that it’s not a ritual implement.”
“No shaping needed? Can you call something like that a ritual implement?” Xue Ye asked.
“How about you do it instead?” Luo Fan glared at him.
“Well, I’ll leave it to you.”
The duo was extremely busy yet they never stopped talking. The ones around them got fed up and asked, “Can you two just shut up?”
Just what kind of armorers are those two? Cooking? At a time like this?
“If you can’t cool yourself down, then by all means, quit. The Alchemy Conference didn’t say anything about restrictions on talking, did it?” Luo Fan glared at the one who asked provokingly. He had no expertise in making things, but it was something else altogether when it came to fights. He was at the moment, very frustrated.
“*sshole,” the other person cursed under their breath and went back to work.
Ye Futian looked distraught and furious as he watched his seniors going about.
Geniuses, both of them. Definitely not people from the cottage.
“Your seniors are interesting.” Even Phoenix, who sported a deadpan face most of the time, cracked a smile. Luo Fan and Xue Ye were definitely the two most special ones of all who were competing.
“I sure miss my old seniors.” Ye Futian felt rather dejected at the sight. All those years ago when he was being bullied in the Qin Dynasty, his Fifth Brother was practically leaking awesomeness. His Third and Fourth brother were there to hold the Qin Dynasty’s door shut, looking equally as awesome. He admired those two seniors back then as idols, yet now
The incense eventually burnt out, and the host of the competition went on to announce, “Time is up. Everyone, cease what you are doing immediately or you will be eliminated right away.”
Everyone stopped what they were doing almost at the same time. Some looked relaxed, some looked disappointed. There was another voice heard right after, “Those who failed to make something, back away and leave the area.”
One figure after another retreated. Most who participated earlier left. The time for that first round was very short, and it was to make sure that only the elites stayed behind. After everyone who was supposed to leave left, many from the City Lord Office came to inspect the ritual implements crafted by the ones who stayed.
“The seniors managed to stay?” Ye Futian saw Xue Ye and Luo Fan, and both stood where they were calmly, waiting for those from City Lord office to inspect their work.
The inspector came by their side and asked, “What is this ritual implement that you made?”
“This is it.” Luo Fan pointed at the furnace.
The inspector took a look inside and saw an irregular shape sitting inside. It did not look like any known weapon and the inspector did not know of anything like it. Am I the one who knows nothing here? And why does this smelting furnace look so much like a common furnace?
“What is this?” the inspector asked.
“Some ritual implement I invented myself. It does not have the usual shape of a ritual implement, but it is full of surprises and is very powerful,” Luo Fan yapped away.
“Something you invented yourself?” the inspector looked funny as he asked. While the piece of whatever did not look like a ritual implement, there were many participants who were of a peculiar breed, and what Luo Fan said seemed to make some sense. The ritual implement did not resemble any known item; it was only a twisted board of some kind, and it would not have attracted any attention. As such, it might have turned out to be full of surprises.
“That’s bulsh*t. With all due respect, those two don’t know anything about the armorer’s art. They just did whatever they thought about doing,” the youth beside them quipped in a very irritated manner.
The elder was stunned. Did I just get played? The inspector elder’s expression turned severe as they exuded an imposing bearing. Xue Ye took out the ritual implement they made and said, “Have a look.” As soon as he finished, Spiritual Qi gushed into the ritual implement and dazzling lights emerged in an instant, pulsing with destructive powers as lightning whipped about in terrifying might, out to tear everything apart. Blinding lights unfolded in the space they were in.
“This is indeed a ritual implement. It was just that we didn’t follow the usual method,” Xue Ye explained.
“Shut up if you know nothing. Who are you to say that this is not a ritual implement?” Luo Fan glared at the one beside them. You *sshole actually went to tell on us!
“You…” That person pointed at Luo Fan and continued, “I beg your pardon, senior. Those two indeed know nothing about making ritual implements. They were just messing around.”
The inspector elder looked rather amused before saying, “But it did exude the power befitting of a superior ritual implement. They pass.” He left as soon as he finished. Luo Fan looked at the one who told on them in a provoking manner, before turning, his expression cold and cursed.
Ye Futian placed his hand on his head. Well, those two are still my seniors, alright. Some work they’ve done there indeed!