Chapter 400 - Resplendent Gold, Titanium Crystal's Spirit Ascends
He Xiaopeng’s titanium crystal had become twenty percent smaller than before. The originally tangled mess of golden threads inside of it had also been transformed into a uniform sheet of brilliant light. A resplendent golden aura shimmered around the metal. There was no doubt that it was first-grade thousand refined.
He Xiaopeng put away his hammers and smiled in satisfaction. He understood that this was the limit of his abilities right now. Despite being under a lot of pressure today, he was able to bring the entirety of his ability to bear. It wasn’t easy to first-grade thousand refine titanium crystal in a mere half-hour, yet he had pulled it off perfectly. For the current him, this was a masterpiece.
Shen Yi and Wu Zhangkong furrowed their brows. In their eyes, He Xiaopeng had just claimed victory. He had started forging later than Tang Wulin, but still finished first-grade thousand refining the titanium crystal first! Tang Wulin couldn’t win with a first-grade thousand refining anymore, and they knew that was his limit! Even if he succeeded in first-grade thousand refining his piece, he would still lose to He Xiaopeng.
Time passed by slowly. Tang Wulin continued forging, his focus just as intense as it had been when he began. Apart from developing a slight orange hue, no other visible changes had occurred to his piece of titanium crystal. The internal workings of the metal remained obscured.
Wu Zhangkong knew Tang Wulin was a genius blacksmith, but he didn’t understand exactly what that meant. He only knew that Tang Wulin came from a poor family. Could it be that he’s never forged titanium crystal before?
The thought cast a shadow of worry over his heart.
This was the first match of the competition between the two grades, the one they should have had the highest chance of winning! If they lost this match, the first grade’s morale would plummet, and their faith in Tang Wulin would waver! Now, there was nothing they could do but believe in him and pray that he performed a miracle.
As the time limit approached, the banging of Tang Wulin’s hammers became more intense. He Xiaopeng watched him attentively. Even as a fellow blacksmith, he couldn’t figure out what Tang Wulin was doing. At this point, no matter how he looked at the situation, Tang Wulin couldn’t possibly surpass him.
“Ten seconds left!” Although Shen Yi felt anxious, she acted as a proper referee and began the countdown. “Nine! Eight! Seven…”
A bead of sweat ran down a first grade student’s forehead.
Some fidgeted anxiously.
In that split second, Tang Wulin’s entire being seemed to grow taller, and he ferociously slammed his hammers down onto the metal. A draconic roar exploded from his body, a golden light emerging from it. The light shot into the orange piece of titanium crystal before him. It trembled for a moment, then its exterior peeled apart like the skin of a tangerine. A brilliant golden glow emerged from the titanium crystal, then shot into the air as a luminescent beam of light. The same instant that beam shot out of the metal, Tang Wulin turned into a ball of golden light. The draconic roar continued to reverberate in the air, a faint illusion of a golden dragon’s head phasing into existence behind him. The ethereal dragon head opened its maw and turned it to the sky, almost as if the thundering roar had been coming from it all along.
In a blaze of resplendent gold, the titanium crystal’s spirit ascended!
Compared to the beam of light that came from He Xiaopeng’s piece, Tang Wulin’s piece generated a beam that was five times taller! The golden light stretched a full five feet into the air, and at its very apex a dragon’s head could be vaguely seen. It looked exactly the same as the dragon head floating behind Tang Wulin! It even faced the sky and roared in the same way!
Tang Wulin smiled softly. After winning the representative selection tournament and being accepted as the class president, his mind, body, and spirit had come into harmony. He was in peak condition, and as a result, he was capable of creating a work that surpassed his current skills! Today, at this very moment, he had succeeded in doing just that!
Now everyone could see just how bizarre Tang Wulin’s piece of titanium crystal was. It was a perfect sphere, the golden threads from before nowhere to be seen. In their place was a plain golden ball. The veinlike lines within the ball were finely organized into a blanket of gold, as if it had been sewn from the golden threads. It was clear that Tang Wulin’s skill far surpassed He Xiaopeng’s.
What happened next, however, shocked everyone to their very cores. The body of the titanium crystal began to shrink until it was two-thirds its original size!
The crowd went wild with disbelief. How can this be? What kind of forging is this? It’s amazing!
A figure dropped from the sky, landed on-stage, and smacked Tang Wulin in the back of his head.
“What the hell are you dilly-dallying for? Hurry up and finish it! Its spirit has formed, so you’ll definitely succeed if you spirit refine it! Do you still need me to teach you this? If you waste this piece of titanium crystal, I’ll make sure you don’t get any sleep tonight!”
Tang Wulin rubbed the back of his aching head and looked up to see the furious Feng Wuyu. Its spirit has formed? Oh! It really has!
He had never seen such a light from a thousand refining, but Feng Wuyu had lectured him on this. Thousand refining with spirit referred to bringing the spirit out of a metal by thousand refining, but spirit refining would grant life to the metal. However, once the spirit formed from a thousand refining, signifying that the metal’s lifeforce was on the verge of awakening and only needed one last push to fully awaken. This meant that spirit refining was practically guaranteed to succeed! This was why it was said that the formation of a spirit would lead to spirit refining.
Tang Wulin didn’t dare talk back to Feng Wuyu. Ignoring the small lump of pain gathering at the back of his head, he took a deep breath and stepped forward, preparing to swing his hammers again.
“Elder Feng.” He Xiaopeng bowed to Feng Wuyu. As a blacksmith in the second grade, it was only natural that he was a member of Shrek Blacksmith’s Association and recognized Feng Wuyu.
Feng Wuyu’s fury died down as he turned to address He Xiaopeng. “Your performance today was not too shabby, but you still have a long ways to go. Keep working hard. You have a good foundation, but your metal lacks in spirit. You need to deepen your understanding of metals.” Even after giving these few words of advice, he showed no intention of getting off the stage.
Up on the platform for the elders, Shen Yi turned to Elder Cai. “What do we do now?”
Just when they thought Tang Wulin lost, he produced a miracle! However, Feng Wuyu then went on-stage, which was clearly against the rules.
Elder Cai glanced at her, then went back to looking at the stage. “Let him continue forging. This match is the first grade’s win. We’ll push the second match back a little.”
Shen Yi walked over to Elder Cai, and in a hushed tone, she said, “If we let Tang Wulin continue forging, he’s going to be exhausted afterward. He still needs to participate in the team battle later, and he’s one of his team’s pillars! It’s...”
The Holy Spirit Douluo smiled and interrupted her. “Don’t worry about it. I’ll take care of him.”
Shen Yi hastily nodded in agreement, saying no more. She turned her attention back to Tang Wulin, who was already back to forging at full speed.