"Fine, I'll believe you."
After Guo Ran's reply, Zhao Mingshan and the Corrupt Chosen both cast a meaningful glance at one of their subordinates.
Those two people immediately understood that after they passed through the passageway, they were to immediately get rid of that hateful brat.
The two of them quickly shot down the passageway. They were both Favored, so they reached the halfway point in an instant.
"Eh?! Demons from the Corrupt path, how dare you try to invade my Righteous path's territory?! Die!"
Suddenly, a noble and virtuous voice rang out. A handful of iron beads shot out, smashing along the wall of the passageway.
"NO!" The two of them instantly despaired. Countless steel hands appeared out of the walls, carrying the same hammers that had smashed Long Chen.
The two of them did their best to block a couple of them, but there were too many of them. Those two powerful Favored were smashed to pulp.
After they died, their Dao-marks floated through the stone wall and disappeared without a trace.
Everyone was dumbfounded. They looked at the mass of pulp and flesh stuck to the passageway now. Even the bones had been crushed to pieces.
"Bastard Guo, you're courting death!" The Corrupt Chosen let out a furious roar. He almost lost control and personally charged into the passageway.
"How am I courting death? If you're going to send people down here, you should be a bit more earnest. How can you send someone so repulsive? That Corrupt disciple looked like a zombie who had climbed out of his own tomb, and was way too frightening. I couldn't help myself from getting him killed. Ah, sorry, sorry. Pick someone who looks a bit nicer next time. Unfortunately, my courage is particularly small!" Guo Ran somehow managed to sound wronged.
The Chosen instantly understood Guo Ran had never had any intentions of letting them through. Everything he had done was just an act.
"You're playing us?!" the Corrupt Chosen once more roared furiously, his voice causing the entire tomb to quiver.
"Hey, don't wrongly accuse the innocent! How have I played you? I'm just having some fun with you because I'm so bored down here," laughed Guo Ran.
Whether it was the Righteous or Corrupt disciples, they were all grinding their teeth furiously. To be duped by this brat, causing two Favored die, was a complete disgrace.
"Could it be… Long Chen didn't die?"
Hearing Guo Ran's laughter caused all of them to think of a certain possibility. Otherwise, how could Guo Ran laugh so heartily?
At this time, the light in the passageway faded. That lightstone had been pulled over by Long Chen's Spiritual Strength.
After advancing to the Tendon Transformation realm, Long Chen's Spiritual Strength had once more advanced. Even Long Chen didn't know what level his current Spiritual Strength had reached.
In any case, pulling over a stone that was just several dozen meters away from him was as easy as raising his hand.
"Boss, have you recovered?" Guo Ran celebrated when he saw Long Chen's actions.
"Yup. It didn't end up injuring my bones, or it would have taken longer." Long Chen nodded.
Ignoring the people cursing and shouting up there, Long Chen raised the lightstone. He saw they were in a huge stone room.
The room was square-shaped, with sixteen stone pillars that were so thick, it would require several people just to wrap around one of them. The room was simple and crude, and at the center, there was a coffin around fifteen meters long.
"Seems like the treasure should be this coffin," said Long Chen. "A normal person's coffin wouldn't be so big, so it's probably packed with something. But don't get your hopes up. This tomb is so ancient, it's more than possible for the treasure to have already disappeared."
But Guo Ran wasn't nervous about it. "If I obtain it, that's my luck. If I don't, that's just my fate. I'm fine with it either way. I just wonder how we're supposed to open this coffin."
"There should be a mechanism inside. You search slowly. There are a couple murals over there I want to have a look at."
There were four huge murals carved into the walls. They were preserved much more perfectly than the ones outside, and they immediately drew Long Chen's attention.
Each one of them depicted a different scene, but they all contained images of humans living in an extremely auspicious and peaceful manner.
"Could it be that people from this era all lived peacefully? They all helped each other, without struggle or slaughter?"
Long Chen couldn't help feeling some yearning towards what was depicted. Of the murals, there was one with people doing manual labor together, there was one with people facing off against a ferocious beast, there was one with a child running around playfully, and there was one with a delightful celebration.
There was no slaughter or wars. These images caused the entire tomb to be filled with an auspicious air.
That was incomprehensible. Was this supposed to mean the tomb owner's death was something worth rejoicing? These drawings were in celebration of the owner's passing?
Why were the murals so peaceful down here, without any depictions of struggle, but then the outside was filled with terrifying mechanisms?
Long Chen couldn't figure it out. But in any case, the main characters in these images had no meaning to him. Instead, he was deeply attracted to what he saw in the backgrounds of all four murals.
The contents of the four murals were different, but their backgrounds were the same. Up in the sky, there were nine small stars revolving around one large star, lighting up the entire world.
That large star wasn't like the sun, nor was it like the moon. It was extremely strange. But the background was also extremely harmonious, a scene that caused people to feel comfortable.
As for Long Chen, when he saw those nine stars revolving around the large star, he always felt some kind of familiarity, as well as a trace of grief.
"Boss, come quick!" shouted out Guo Ran out of nowhere.
"What? Did you find the way to open the coffin?" Long Chen put away his thoughts.
"No, but look at this!" Guo Ran showed off a brick.
The brick was around a foot long and completely black. It seemed unremarkable, but there were complicated veined patterns on it that looked similar to ice crystals. Its weight was alarming.
As soon as Long Chen touched it, he realized it was ice-cold and extremely hard. He tried to squeeze it, but wasn't able to cause it the slightest damage. Instead, it was his fingers that began to feel a bit sore, shocking him.
"Hehe, boss, we really struck gold. This is made of Icecold Blackvein Iron, and its purity is extremely high. In our entire monastery, even senior Cang Ming doesn't have much of it. But look, now it's everywhere around us!" exclaimed Guo Ran.
"This is pretty good stuff, but it's still not as important as the real treasure," said Long Chen.
"That coffin is extremely bizarre. Somehow the lid is seamless with the rest of the coffin. There's not even a line demarking where the lid starts. Even now, I still can't tell what part is the lid. In fact, I'm even suspicious that this coffin is a fake, that it's just a stone carved into the shape of a coffin!"
Guo Ran had already become obsessed with becoming an expert craftsman. But even with all his studying, he was still unable to tell what part of this coffin was its lid, and even suspected it to be a dupe.
"Ok, then let's first collect the bricks. If we can't open the coffin, just these bricks will have made it worth us coming here."
The two of them began to collect all the bricks that lined the ground. By the time they gathered them all, their storage rings were completely packed.
Seeing that mountain of bricks in his storage ring, Guo Ran almost starting dancing from excitement. "Hehe, with this material, I can make some really good equipment. But to forge this material, I'd probably need a forging table on the same level as senior Cang Ming's forging table. But senior Cang Ming has already said that a Forging Master's forging table is equivalent to their wife, and has to be cherished closely. He probably won't lend me his wife to use…"
Guo Ran was helpless. A Forging Master without a good forging table was like a chef without fire, rice, oil, or salt. No matter how high their cooking skill was, it was useless.
A forging table required a huge amount of materials. Even Guo Ran's amateur forging table had required a huge number of points.
Without Long Chen supporting him, then even a core disciple would have been bankrupted by Guo Ran's expenses.
The formations that smelted special materials all required spirit stones. That was already enough for a person to feel pain. And if a formation wasn't strong enough, there was no way for it to create a strong enough flame to smelt a material like the Icecold Blackvein Iron, and so Guo Ran wouldn't be able to make anything with these bricks right now.
"Don't be discouraged. We'll find a way," consoled Long Chen.
Frankly speaking, being a craftsman was like burning money. However, as an alchemist, Long Chen was specialized in making money. Sometimes he felt Guo Ran had come to keep him poor. He would make money, while Guo Ran would spend it all.
Looking around, they saw that there was nothing more of value around them, and so their gazes once more fell to the coffin.
It was just as Guo Ran had said. It looked like one seamless whole, without any lid to speak of.
Long Chen tried smashing his fist onto it, and after a loud explosion, they both saw that the coffin hadn't even budged. Instead, it was Long Chen's hand that hurt.
"How hard, how heavy!" Long Chen was startled. This huge coffin was almost three meters tall, and adding on its length of fifteen meters, its weight must surpass his imagination.
There was no way to directly absorb such a thing into his spatial ring. Spatial rings all required the master to be able to physically move the thing in order to absorb it.
Long Chen took out a brick and smashed it down onto a corner of the coffin repeatedly.
Bang, bang, bang…!
Long Chen didn't dare use Devil Decapitator, as that would cause serious damage to it. It was unfortunate he didn't have a heavy hammer-like weapon, so he could only use one of the bricks they had collected.
After advancing to the Tendon Transformation realm, Long Chen's strength had reached an unimaginable level. Each time that brick smashed into the coffin, it would cause the entire tomb to tremble.
"I figured it out! This coffin isn't a flip-top, but a sliding-top!"
After smashing it multiple times, the top portion had shifted around an inch.
"Keep going boss! Let's see what the treasure inside it is!" exclaimed Guo Ran excitedly.
Long Chen was just about to continue when his expression suddenly changed. He looked in the direction of the passageway, from which many figures were quickly rushing over.