"You mean it?" Even someone as weathered as Sang De could not keep his calm, his eyes shining feverently. Metal weapons might be so common in the outside world, but here it was more than a rarity. With metal weapons, the entire Sang Family tribe could make a quantum leap in strength.
Sang De had been the village head for so many years, and had always tried to find ways to increase their chances of survival. However, no one was able to understand the knowledge their ancestors had left behind. Now that this opportunity presented itself, how could he pass it up?
Was this really a blessing from Heaven to the pitiful, to give the Sang Family this glimmer of hope? Old Sang De put his hands together and muttered a silent prayer.
As for Sang Pu and Sang Ling, they were both shocked. They stared directly at Ye Chong, unable to see how this seemingly ordinary man could make such an offer.
Ye Chong caressed the spiral patterns on the bitterwood pike, as though he did not notice their stares. In fact, Ye Chong was not offering help out of kindness - he had not become so altruistic just yet. This offer was calculatively made, now that his survival depended on the strength of he Sang Family Village. It would be in his interest to make them stronger.
Besides, Ye Chong had other concerns. It would be difficult if he had to find a new source of energy by himself. Wouldn’t it be better to let the natives, the inhabitants of the Sang Family Village to help?
Ye Chong also thought of his greatest concern. The Red Sea was triggered by metal, and the chances of Coxcomb escaping was too small. However, Coxcomb had enough food and water to last Zhu Ling, Lian Yue and Little Rock for quite some time. As for Mu and Shang, who did not need to eat, they would only hibernate when they run out of energy. Even so, Coxcomb had enough energy cells to last the mech for a long while - Ye Chong knew better than anyone of Coxcomb’s resources.
It was highly probable that Mu, Shang and the rest were still trapped in the Red Sea. If he could build enough skeleton mechs ... No, they did not have to be mechs, any machine that could fly in space would be enough. If Ye Chong could search the Red Sea intensively, it would increase his chances of finding Coxcomb.
In any case, he would not leave Mu and Shang behind, of this he was certain. He remembered the time when the stellar flare was coming, and Mu had tried to save him by making that extremely risky warp jump.
The bond between him and the mech was no longer that of a mech pilot and a mech. Ye Chong would sacrifice his life to save them, if it came to it. He knew that they would do the same for him, even if the odds were definitely against them. This was true, even for that usually flippant Shang.
Of course, his plan was difficult to execute, and Ye Chong was not confident of success. Even so, he would do it. If he at least tried, the probability of success would be nonzero; if he did not try, then failure was certain.
This was not the first time Ye Chong had to make such a decision. He knew exactly what he should do.
After a full five minutes, Ye Chong saw that the three of them were still caught up with their thoughts. He spoke up slowly, "Calm yourselves. I haven’t surveyed this place, so I don’t know if there are suitable metal ores. Besides, I have conditions."
Ye Chong had to thank the elders at the Aurora. If they had not provided Ye Chong with such solid foundation, he would not dare to make such a bold offer. Here, he will find no field dissociation apparatus, no metal purification devices. To process metal in this primitive environment would require the most basic and fundamental understanding of metal smelting.
However, all this depended on finding suitable metal ores. If there was no ore, they would only be building a castle in the sky.
Old Sang De answered solemnly, "Whatever conditions you have, Ye, tell us, and we will do our best to fulfill them."
Sang Ling’s expression was one of condescension and disgust. She did not think that the man would be such an opportunist. Sang Pu may have felt the same, but his expression betrayed nothing.
Ye Chong acted like he did not see Sang Ling’s expression. In fact, he truly did not care. There are no free meals in this world. He had no reason to volunteer in helping him. Besides, Ye Chong did not feel that he was having an unfair advantage in this bargain.
Ye Chong replied plainly, "I need the Sang family to fulfill my three requests. I haven’t decided on what they are, I’ll let you know when it’s time." Ye Chong had wanted to only ask for one request, but for some reason he thought of Shang. If was that b*stard, he would definitely ask for more. Hence, Ye Chong decided in that split second to ask for three requests instead.
"Alright." Old Sang De promised without hesitation.
Ye Chong looked at the village head and said, "Think carefully about this. What I ask from you is dangerous, and will need significant manpower."
Old Sang De gave a significant look at Ye Chong and replied, "The Sang family had waited for 500 years without hope. Now that we finally have a glimmer of hope, the Sang family will not let this opportunity be wasted, no matter the risks."
Ye Chong said nothing, but he was quietly impressed with the old man’s determination.
Sang Pu was also watching him with fervent eyes. Ye Chong would not understand their helplessness and anger at having to live such primitive lives. Now that the opportunity presented itself, how could he let it go?
"Alright then, it’s a deal," Ye Chong said this plainly, as though it had nothing to do with him.
"Aren’t you scared that we’ll go back on our word?" Sang Ling could not stand Ye Chong’s look and blurted out. The moment the words left her mouth, she instantly regretted them.
Ye Chong said nothing, but his eyes suddenly turned into a chilling stare. A sharp killing intent flashed in his eyes. Go back on their word? If they really did, Ye Chong would make them regret it.
Ye Chong said nothing, but it was as though the room had suddenly been plunged into deep winter. A chilling sense crawled up their spines. The three of them shuddered inside despite themselves. Every younger member of the Sang family had his or her own share of fighting against wild beasts, and was familiar with this killing intent.
This was the first time they had encountered such a fierce killing intent! Even the three-eyed giant squid could not compare with what they were experiencing now!
This killing intent could not be nurtured by just killing a single person. Just how many people had this man killed? Sang Pu could not help taking another glance at the dagger in his hands. The dagger suddenly felt even more chilling to the touch.
They had thought that an angel had designed to visit them, but it was actually the devil himself!
The weathered Old Sang De’s expression was unreadable, as he smiled wryly inside. He knew not if he had made the right decision. There was never a happy ending for the man who made a deal with the devil. Who knew just exactly what his deal with this man would mean for the future of the Sang Family?
Even with ten thousand villagers, they were defenseless against his mech. Besides, Han Jia was an advanced level mech. This was the power of technology.
Old Sang De said solemnly, "The Sang Family had always kept our word. In the name of the Sang family ancestors, I promise that the Sang family will do its best to fulfill your requests, dear sir. If we failed to do so, may the Sang Family be damned for all eternity."
Sang Pu and Sang Ling were horrified. Sang Ling’s expression was one full of regret. She did not imagine that her careless words had led to the village head vowing in the name of their ancestors. To the Sang Family, vowing in the name of the ancestors was a solemn thing to do. It represented the most sacred and important of vows, never to be broken.
Ye Chong did not share the same sentiment about vows. To him, a vow was not reliable. Only strength was.
"Alright, let’s not get ahead of ourselves, at least not until I make your first metal weapon," Ye Chong’s casual reply made Sang Ling grit her teeth in anger, but she dared to speak so easily again. Her carelessness had forced Sang De to make that vow, and she regretted that very much.
"If you need any help, sir, all members of the Sang family are at your disposal," the village head spoke up, his expression sincere. If anyone could watch from the side and learn from him, it would be most invaluable. Old Sang De had also began to speak more respectfully to Ye Chong again, calling him "sir", and Ye Chong could not be bothered to correct him.
Ye Chong suddenly picked up the bitterwood pike beside him and asked, "Who designed the spirals on this shaft?" Ye Chong had thought they were natural, but he knew upon touching them that they were carved by hand.
The three of them were surprised by this change of subject, and Sang Pu replied, "It’s Sang Fan’s work. Is there anything wrong with it?"
"Oh, then he’ll be my assistant." Anyone who could design something like this must be quite capable.
Sang Pu looked ill at ease. "He was injured today, probably need some time to rest."
So it was the man who was injured earlier today. Ye Chong said casually, "Then I’ll wait for him to get better." He still needed time to be more familiar with this place.
Having a Sang family member as his assistant was also a calculated measure, beneficial in the long run. He could delegate tasks for his assistant to take care of.
WIthout Mu and Shang by his side, Ye Chong was like a child without support. He would have to start experimenting and exploring on his own.