Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
The road on the way back was still flat. Although Ou Yangming felt uneasy as he lost some power and agility, he felt much better than when his power increased so suddenly during his journey to the forest.
He returned to the military camp safe and sound and got back to his courtyard easily since he had the waist tag of an official Military Fire Blacksmith.
Just as he fetched a pail of water to clean himself, Old Craftsman’s voice was heard.
“Fella, open the door!”
Ou Yangming quickly ran to open the door.
After looking at him from head to toe, Old Craftsman finally sighed a breath of relief, and his tensed face loosened up a little. Nonetheless, he complained, “B*stard, where have you been? You actually know that you should come home?”
While Old Craftsman was being very strict, Ou Yangming felt warmth in his heart, and he was delighted.
Since he was an orphan, he had never been someone’s concern.
The simple words almost made Ou Yangming weep.
Upon sensing his unusual behavior, Old Craftsman’s anger disappeared, and he asked worriedly, “Young fella, what’s wrong?”
Ou Yangming quickly curbed his emotions as he asked, “Old Man, why did you come so quickly?”
“You disappeared without saying a word. If someone hadn’t seen you, I would’ve thought that…” Old Craftsman scoffed, then paused for a while before he continued, “Sir Kang asked about you, and I told him that you went to run some errands. If you’re still not back, I would’ve sought help from General Chen.”
Ou Yangming could not help but laugh. Sir Kang did not look at him in the eye at all back when he was still a helper, let alone care about him. After Ou Yangming became an official Military Fire Blacksmith and handed in five pieces of Attribute Equipment, there was an instant 180-degree change in Kang Weibo’s attitude toward him.
Kang Weibo visited personally to ask about Ou Yangming who had not returned for only a few days.
Needless to say, if Ou Yangming had a choice, he would rather Kang Weibo show no interest in him.
“Where exactly did you go?” Old Craftsman asked.
Ou Yangming looked away as he tried to come up with an explanation. Obviously, he was not going to tell the truth, but the thought of fooling the old man made him uncomfortable.
“Forget it, it’s fine if you don’t want to tell me, but let me tell you something.” Old Craftsman suddenly waved his hand, then mentioned seriously, “No matter what you do, you must be careful. Remember, you only have one life, and there’s no room for you to regret it at all.”
“Yes, I’ll remember, Old Man.” Ou Yangming nodded hard. He was secretly grateful that Old Craftsman did not force an answer out of him because the old man could tell that it would make things difficult for him.
“Did you gain anything from going wild outside for three days?” Old Craftsman asked.
Ou Yangming pondered for a while before he answered, “Old Man, the world outside is completely different from the military camp, I was extremely enlightened!”
“Oh? How were you enlightened? Tell me about it.” Old Craftsman was interested.
“It’s a perception, and I can’t describe it.” Ou Yangming chuckled.
Old Craftsman slapped his head snappily, then commented, “Young fella, enlightened my *ss!”
Ou Yangming quickly replied, “I was, I was. I think… Uhm, I have some ideas about increasing the Unique Attributes of a High Grade equipment.”
Due to his purple Military Fire’s unique nature, he could simply achieve that effortlessly.
Nevertheless, Ou Yangming never revealed that to anyone, thus even Old Craftsman had no idea that he could already add Unique Attributes to High Grade equipment.
“Young fella, don’t reach for what’s beyond your grasp. The most important thing about being a Military Fire Blacksmith is to be conscientious. Hmph, High Grade equipment is completely different from Good Grade equipment, and it’s more difficult to attach attributes on them. Being able to smith one doesn’t mean that you can attach attributes too.” Old Craftsman’s face tensed up again, and he added after thinking for a while, “Judging from your talent, you’ll be amazing if you can achieve that within three to six months!”
Ou Yangming was slightly moved because he could wait if a three-month period was acceptable for Old Craftsman.
“Old Man, I’ll definitely try my best, but…” He hesitated for a moment. “I realize that going outside really helps me.”
Old Craftsman giggled. “At the end of the day, you just want to go out, don’t you? Okay, I promise you. As long as you complete five pieces of Good Grade Attribute Equipment and twenty pieces of High Grade White Slate Equipment every month, you may go.”
2Ou Yangming was instantly elated, but his eyes suddenly flashed as he asked, “Old Man, are you asking me to complete yours too?”
‘Old Craftsman’s monthly quota is three pieces of Good Grade Attribute Equipment, and along with my quota of two pieces, doesn’t it mean that I’ll have to smith everything?’
“Are you going to do it or not?!” Old Craftsman stared at him.
“I’ll do it, of course, I’ll do it!” Ou Yangming quickly responded, “It’s such a small matter, so leave it to me.”
Indeed, adding attributes was an extremely difficult task for Old Craftsman, but it was as easy as eating and drinking for Ou Yangming.
After dealing with the old man, Ou Yangming finally felt a bit tired.
Even though he had plenty of blood and flesh in the dense forest to replenish himself when he cultivated, and the martial-art squat helped him get rid of the exhaustion, it did not mean that he could really live without sleeping at all.
Ou Yangming used his Military Fire to draw the attributes from his arm guards and greaves, then put the equipment set in a corner.
5Details determined success or failure. Old Craftsman nagged him about this numerous times, so he always bore it in mind.
Ou Yangming was deep asleep shortly after he got on his bed.
The next morning, he stretched his body when he woke up, and the weariness from the last few days was gone.
He strode out of his courtyard and headed to his smithing workshop to begin working.
However, he was unaware that a figure sneaked into his courtyard by going over the wall not long after he left.
The person covered his face using his sleeves. It was Han Changling, the person who blamed Ou Yangming in the past but ended up being beaten by Sui Hezhi. Due to that incident, not only did he get beaten up for nothing, but he also offended Old Craftsman indirectly. If not for Zhang Yinfan from the Provision Camp who stood up for him, Kang Weibo would have added insult to his injury too.
After all, as long as one was not a fool, one would know who to pick between Old Craftsman and Han Changling.
Han Changling walked carefully without touching anything. He searched Ou Yangming’s room and courtyard carefully as if he was looking for something.
“Did sir make a mistake? How can this fella have a cylindrical Fire-absorbing Badge? But what exactly is a Fire-absorbing Badge…” He rubbed his neck after a long time as he mumbled. He did not find anything unusual even after searching for some time, but he suddenly noticed a pile of armaments in a corner.
Han Changling approached the pile carefully, then picked up a greave to look at it closely. At the spur of the moment, his face changed as he exclaimed, “High Grade equipment!”
1In actual fact, the greave was already at the peak of High Grade, but Han Changling could not distinguish that through his naked eyes.
He measured the greave’s size by comparing it with his body and confirmed that the greave was smithed to fit Ou Yangming.
Following that, he put the greave down then picked up the arm guards, the armor, the helmet, and the military saber.
Though the Unique Attributes in those pieces of equipment had been withdrawn by Ou Yangming, the fact that they were of Good Grade was shocking.
In the end, Han Changling was even trembling a little.
‘How long has Ou Yangming been using the Military Fire? It has only been three months at most.’
‘He actually smithed pieces of Good Grade Attribute Equipment in three months, though people are saying that it was Old Craftsman who smithed them.’
Han Changling had only taken it by a pinch of salt, but after seeing the pieces of High Grade equipment with special specifications, he became skeptical about it.
‘Is it true that it wasn’t Old Craftsman who forged the pieces of Attribute Equipment, but Ou Yangming?’
‘If that’s the case, the young fella has a bright future, and it won’t be wise for me to go against him…’
2Han Changling hesitated for a while, then placed everything back to where they were as though they were never shifted at all.
Subsequently, he left cautiously without making a sound, then headed to the Provision Camp to meet Zhang Yinfan.
“Sir, I’ve searched everywhere, and I didn’t see the Fire-absorbing Badge in his house or his smithing workshop,” Han Changling mentioned respectfully, “But I found a few… Pieces of High Grade equipment in his room.”
Zhang Yinfan frowned. “What’s so odd about a few pieces of High Grade equipment? Old Craftsman even smithed a number of Fine Grade ones before.”
Han Changling smiled bitterly. “Sir, I suspect that it wasn’t Old Craftsman who smithed them.”
“What?” Zhang Yinfan was stunned. His face changed slightly. “Did Ou Yangming smith them himself?”
“It’s very… Possible,” Han Changling answered hesitantly.
Zhang Yinfan’s face darkened a little. He obviously understood what Han Changling meant. It was not just very possible, because it was definitely it.
“Sir, he’s not ordinary, and I’m afraid that he’ll be very successful in the future. In my opinion, no matter what happened in the past…” Han Changling glanced at Zhang Yinfan carefully when he spoke, but the moment he noticed the fierce look in Zhang Yinfan’s eyes, he was so scared that he quickly stopped and left.
Zhang Yinfan was the only one left in the room.
He mumbled as he furrowed his eyebrows. “Does Hanyu’s disappearance really have nothing to do with him? But there mustn’t be a mistake from the Fire-absorbing Badge no matter what!”