Chapter 145 - First Generation Tai'e Crafting Furnace
The very instant the three light-gold, diamond-shaped crystal submerged into Li Yao's body, a change also took place in the huge holographic image on the topmost floor of the Hidden Dragon Hall.
Li Yao's name, which was shining brightly and overflowing with resplendent colors, after slightly shaking for a moment, jumped up with an unstoppable momentum and pushed Zhao Tianchong’s name underneath it
An exclamation of surprise burst forth in the Hidden Dragon Hall, whereupon it fell into a complete silence.
Over a hundred specially recruited students stared at each other, not knowing how to speak under such a perplexing and complicated mood.
Meanwhile, Zhao Tianchong kept on staring at Li Yao's name for a very long time; his scorching gaze seemed to have some kind of essence, seemingly as if it was a pair of swords which could pierce two transparent holes into the holographic screen.
After half minute, a trickle of cold sweat finally rolled down his forehead to his chin, and his tight facial muscles finally relaxed as the sharp look in his eyes changed to a burning look.
It was the kind of fiery look one would have when he encountered a pretty good opponent in a game of chess.
Gu Feixuan was stunned for a long time before he reluctantly said, "There is still 4-5 hours left until the end of this month. Zhao Tianchong, even though it might take you two hours to thoroughly read a textbook, you should pick seven or eight theory courses and use the next two hour to take the exams. Afterwards, you can leave everything to luck. Maybe you will luck out on one or two courses, in which case this brat would not be first in the Newcomer Ranking!"
Zhao Tianchong had now completely restored to a calm demeanor, and the look in his eyes was neither sharp nor as fiery as before; it was a kind of indifferent look. All his emotions had been sealed in the depths of his light-gray eyes.
He calmly said, "Maybe it will be possible, but is it necessary?"
Gu Feixuan was stupefied: "What do you mean? That's the first position in the Newcomer Ranking!"
Zhao Tianchong unenthusiastically smiled:
"For the very first month, the first position in the Newcomer Ranking only means that Li Yao is comparatively good at learning theoretical knowledge. I grew up in the Wasteland, so I paid more attention to combat rather than theory!"
"What's the point of competing to the end in basic theory courses?"
"There is a lot of time ahead of us. When we enter a real combat ring, then the amount of credits I will have will be so much that they will absolutely steamroll him. I will definitely suppress him!"
Gu Feixuan stared blankly for a long time before an itching-to-give-it-a-try look emerged in his eyes as he nodded and said:
"You are right. There’s still a very long university life ahead of us, and what’s most important is the combat ring. No matter how good he is at learning theory, he is nothing more than a nerd."
"I am afraid his fighting skills are just as good as his theory. Are you forgetting that he had blown away a 3rd level Refinement Stage cultivator right when he had just awakened his spirit root?!"
Lu Tieshan pursed his lips into a smile as he gently rubbed his fists while looking at Li Yao's name: "Teacher Ding Lingdang indeed has a pretty good eye for people. Fellow Student Li Yao is truly one terrifying monster—he is a worthy rival for me to set my entire fighting spirit ablaze!"
“I truly want to dissect this monster's brain..." Wen Ruorong faintly sighed and said.
Li Yao, who was still immersed in the Wasteland Battle Network, was totally oblivious to the fact that the four strongest freshmen of the Hidden Dragon Hall were already treating him as their rival.
Along with the toll of the 24 o'clock bell, he stood at the first position of the Newcomer Ranking, whereupon a thousand glittering diamond crystals, like rain, poured down from the sky and whizzed into his body.
His cumulative credits had now reached 1,207. Although there was still a long way from 40,000 credits, when all is said and done, he had taken the first solid step.
A sound which was akin to the glass shattering into pieces rang in his ear, following which the Wasteland Battle Network became even clearer as seven or eight translucent regions emerged around him; namely, they were the mission area, trading zone, arena, professional course area, and the open trading zone!
From this moment on, just like the senior students, he could freely choose difficult professional courses, complete various kinds of missions, and even go to the arena to compete with numerous powerhouses. There were now various kinds of ways available for him to madly sweep through the credits!
Seeing all this, Li Yao's eyes were dazzled, and he didn't know from where to start. Licking his lips, just as he was about to take an in-depth look, a message suddenly popped out from the corner of the battle network.
"Teacher has returned? And she also bought a small-scale, second-hand crafting furnace?"
Li Yao was wild with joy. He immediately logged out of the Wasteland Battle Network as he bolted towards a huge edifice at the other end of the ruins right away.
The edifice had hundreds of years of history; it used to be a warehouse for storing dangerous goods, so it was built particularly sturdy. It had a double wall structure, in between which reinforced defensive array glyphs had also been engraved.
Even when the floating mountain had collapsed, it did not shake even the slightest bit.
Li Yao and Yuan Manqiu had long discussed that this huge warehouse would be renovated to the central most important building of the Refining Department—the refining room!
At the center of this empty warehouse stood a towering 3 meter high small-scale crafting furnace. Although it was an antique refining equipment from over a century ago and although its pitch-black appearance was not particularly attractive, at any rate, it could still refine some of the most common magical equipment.
Lying next to the crafting furnace were two lazy Soaring Roars.
Yuan Manqiu was radiating with happiness as she ordered the workers to unload a dozen huge wooden crates before she untied their constraints, whereupon tens of thousands of magical equipment components poured down onto the floor.
These components were all fittings of the crafting furnace. At the moment, the crafting furnace was nothing more than an iron shell. For it to function normally, it had to first be completely assembled before a huge amount of crystals can be used to activate its array glyphs.
"Old Jiang, I have to really thank you. Your Mountain Sea Sect has truly solved my pressing needs by selling this crafting furnace at such a low price!"
Yuan Manqiu expressed her gratitude to a handsome middle-aged refiner via the spiritual crane messenger.
His name was Jiang Wenbo and he was the logistics supervisor of the Mountain Sea Sect as well as a refiner of the grassroots faction.
Just because they were both from the same faction, he had offered a second-hand crafting furnace to the Grand Desolate War Institution at a bargain price.
Jiang Wenbo broke into laughter and said:
"Big Sis, don’t mention it. This crafting furnace has already been in use for 150 years, so not only have the components deformed from age, but its technology can also not keep up with modern technology and is unable to refine the latest powerful equipment. We have already stopped using it for a long time. So if it can help you even a little bit, then it couldn't be any better!"
As Li Yao stepped into the warehouse, he was deeply attracted by the shadow of the crafting furnace.
Although it was just an empty shell and all its components were lying here and there, Li Yao's heart started racing when he thought of the countless peerless equipment he would be able to refine in this guy's stomach. He could not wait to give it a hug.
"This is a 1st generation Tai'e crafting furnace. Although it is over a century old and its performance parameters are relatively low, it is fairly well-maintained and can be used for low-intensity operations without a hitch, which is enough for a beginner like you to refine some of the most common magical equipment!"
Yuan Manqiu enthusiastically said. When she saw the radiating gaze of her disciple and his itching-to-give-it-a-try look, she smiled and knocked on Li Yao's head.
"However, if you want to use this crafting furnace, it is not that simple! At the very least, you have to first learn the basics!"
"You can't run before you learn how to walk; otherwise, you will run your head against a wall!"
"From what I hear, you have gotten yourself the moniker 'God of Sleeping' in the institute, what is this about? Didn't I explain the basic theory courses to you? Why didn't you concentrate on your studies? How many courses did you pass? Five? Ten?"
Yuan Manqiu was tired and exhausted from the trip and all her heart was on the crafting furnace, so she didn't care to check the Newcomer Ranking.
Li Yao swallowed a mouthful of saliva and his gaze never left the crafting furnace as he casually replied, "I scored 207 points."
Yuan Manqiu was stupefied. Her face, which had a completely grim look, bloomed as she vigorously patted Li Yao's shoulder.
"Good, good! The entire institute has tens of thousands of freshmen, yet you have unexpectedly jumped to the 207th position. This is very good. It seems I have underestimated you. I must revise your learning program!"
"Uh, teacher, I'm not in the 207th position. I have earned 207 credits. I am first in the Newcomer Ranking." Li Yao was a bit embarrassed.
"En, good, good... what? What did you say!? You have earned 207 credits? First in the Newcomer Ranking?"
Yuan Manqiu was flabbergasted. Her entire face was like fermenting bread which kept on growing bigger and bigger. She was stunned for a good while before she started up the crystal processor and swept a glance in a flurry.
When she discovered that Li Yao had actually passed 88 courses in one go, including all the basic refining theory courses, she uttered a cry which was even louder and piercing than that of a shrill scream.
The two Soaring Roars had been so much scared by her that they were trembling, and the workers on the back of the Soaring Roars, even more so, had been scared to death, causing even a fair share of them to almost fall off. In a hurry, they had grabbed hold of the long hair of the Soaring Roars and were swinging to and fro.
Yuan Manqiu, without even paying attention to these, started running at once.
Seeing this, Li Yao was dumbfounded: "Teacher, where are you going?"
Yuan Manqiu was flushed red to her ears. It seemed as if she was heavily drunk and was dancing with joy as she spoke incoherently:
"I, I am going to look for the Dean! With your achievement, the dean will have to throw us 10% more resources! I will also go find the faculties of the other departments so that they would release some tasks related to refining! There is hope, there is hope for the Refining Department! Yes—!"
When she had run for a couple dozen meters, she came running back with a gust of wind:
"This is the blueprint and the assembling procedure for the 1st Generation Tai'e crafting furnace. First, learn these. The outer ring components are relatively simple, so you can try assembling them. If you don't understand something, just wait till I return. I will teach you then."
Having stuffed a jade chip in Li Yao's arm, Yuan Manqiu, like a sandstorm, ran out of the warehouse and jumped onto a dilapidated flying shuttle before she drove it towards the administrative district.
It was still quite early before dawn and the dean was most definitely asleep in his house; however, how could Yuan Manqiu, with her temper, give much attention to such things? She could not wait to place a voice amplifying glyph in the administrative district and roar:
"My student is first in the entire institute!"
After 10 minutes, the overloaded flying shuttle appeared in the sky over the administrative district accompanied by "creak creak" sounds.
Yuan Manqiu aligned the flying shuttle at the living cottage of Dean Xiong Baili, and just as she was about to go down, her crystal processor started shaking.
The Mountain Sea Sect's logistic supervisor, Jiang Wenbo, had sent her a spiritual crane message, asking for a video chat.
"Big Sis, this is truly embarrassing. I have made a mistake. The jade chip I gave you doesn’t include the blueprints of the 1st Generation ‘Tai'e' crafting furnace."
On one side, Jiang Wenbo bitterly smiled, while on the other, explained.
The 1st Generation Tai'e crafting furnace was truly an antique and its blueprint had long been thrown to god knows where.
Jiang Wenbo had sent a message to the "Empyrean Terminus Sect", which was the original manufacturer of the 1st Generation Tai'e crafting furnace, and asked them to send the blueprint.
This model of crafting furnace had been discontinued for over a century already, so after looking for a long time, the disciple of the Empyrean Terminus Sect had inadvertently sent the blueprints and assembling manual of the "2nd Generation Tai'e" crafting furnace.
Although these two model had the same root and 90% of their components could be used in both cases, some of the core components were completely different and their assembling procedure was also quite different.
The Empyrean Terminus Sect's disciple, after having discovered this problem, immediately notified Jiang Wenbo who then contacted Yuan Manqiu.
"It's alright, I have still yet to start assembling it. I am letting my disciple study it a bit first. By my estimate, with his strength, it will take him a day and a night for him to be finished with the outer components. It is impossible for him to touch the core components!"
Yuan Manqiu jovially laughed and did not place this matter in her heart at all. Aiming at Dean Xiong Baili's villa, she fiercely plunged down.
"Dean, quickly wake up! I have good news, I have very good news!"
I just came across an information as I was translating this chapter. I was looking to find some alternate for the name when I came across it. Although it is completely unrelated, this shed some light on where the name of the furnace comes from.
This is a information I got from wiki:-
Ou Yezi was a legendary master of sword-making in the Spring and Autumn period. According to Yuejueshu, he forged five treasured swords for Gan Jiang and King Zhao of Chu, named, respectively, Zhanlu (湛卢), Juque (巨阙), Shengxie (胜邪), Yuchang (鱼肠) and Chunjun (纯钧). He also made three swords for King Goujian of Yue, named Longyuan (龙渊), Tai’e (泰阿) and Gongbu (工布).
So Tai’e names is derived from here. That’s my take.