The purple thorn token was letting out a dreamy and illusionary light.
The clerk stared at this token closely, his expression sluggish as he was lost for words.
After a long while, he came back to his senses and respectfully said: "Esteemed guest, please forgive me for being blind! Please wait a moment, I will go call the shopkeeper."
The shopkeeper was a middle-aged white fatty who ran in flustering when he heard a purple thorn token holder appeared.
He immediately bowed deeply towards Fang Yuan: "Esteemed guest, your presence brings light to this little shop!"
Fang Yuan pointed at the rocks he chose and said indifferently: "I have chosen some rocks, I will have to trouble you guys to dissect them."
The shopkeeper was stupefied when he looked at the rocks, how could they all be low grades?
He could not help quickly glancing at the clerk with a reproachful gaze: 'Those with purple thorn tokens are all important characters, big clients, you actually let him choose these rocks?'
The clerk stood uneasily at the side, words stuck at his throat.
The shopkeeper bowed his head towards Fang Yuan: "Esteemed guest, you don't need to worry about dissecting the rocks. Purple thorn token holders can have rocks dissected free of charge in rock gambling zone. After calculating the discounts for these rocks, it comes down to six hundred and fifty primeval stones."
"I know the rock gambling rules, pay first before dissecting the rocks." Fang Yuan nodded and took out the primeval stones from primeval elder Gu.
The shopkeeper swifty received the primeval stones and turned towards the clerk: "Go and call Great Master Duan, Master Huang, Master Zhang, Master Zhao and Master Ma here quickly."
He then turned towards Fang Yuan: "Esteemed guest, rock dissection counter is inside, let's wait there."
The five old masters at dissecting rocks were resting at the small courtyard behind the rock gambling den. At their levels, they couldn't be bothered with dissecting normal gambling rocks. Those in charge of dissecting normal rocks were their disciples or some young Gu Masters.
The clerk ran all the way to the courtyard and explained the purpose of his visit.
"Oh, requesting all five of us to go?" The five old masters' gaze shone with radiance.
"Could it be someone bought those few super grade gambling rocks?" The old masters immediately felt their hands itching.
The clerk shook his head: "It is only some low grade gambling rocks."
The old masters expressions changed into an unhappy one.
Great Master Duan snorted
Asking them to dissect low grade gambling rocks was simply an insult and contempt towards their identities.
But the clerk immediately followed: "The person has a very high status and possesses the purple thorn token. So the shopkeeper intentionally asked me to call all five masters!"
"What, purple thorn token?"
"Are you sure?"
"Shang Clan has existed for thousands of years but the number of purple thorn tokens it has given out is mere a few hundred. And now, someone who holds a purple thorn token appears?"
"Quickly, what are you being dazed for?"
The five Gu Masters hurriedly ran out of the courtyard and walked up the platform.
On the work platform, the young rock dissecting masters got a little shock, and quickly greeted them.
The old masters waved their hands and made these juniors get down from the platform.
This scene quickly attracted the bystanders' attention and soon many gazes were casted here.
The curious nature of people aroused and they began discussing in whispered tones.
"What is going on here?"
"All five masters have appeared together, this is a rarely seen sight."
"Could it be someone bought a batch of super grade gambling rocks?"
Fang Yuan was accompanied by the shopkeeper and was already before the rock dissection counter with the crowd. However he did not go forward, and just gazed from afar to maintain a low profile. But the five old masters were astute and saw the shopkeeper following a young man like an attendant, how could they still not recognize Fang Yuan's identity?
However, Fang Yuan remained gazing from afar and did not walk towards the platform.
The five old masters thought: 'it seems this young master doesn't want to show off."
This was also normal.
Many people behaved the same before dissecting rocks because they would have no face if they lost the gamble!
"I have to do this properly and leave behind a deep impression in this esteemed guest, having a connection with someone of higher status would be great." The five old masters were all scheming in their mind and rubbing their hands, eager to try it out at that thought.
The rocks Fang Yuan chose was delivered by the clerk.
The spectators couldn't believe their eyes when they saw these rocks.
"What? These are only some low grade rocks!"
"I am not seeing it wrongly, right? These damaged rocks…"
"Making the old masters dissect low grade gambling rocks, this is simply an insult to them."
But what made them even more surprised and stare with their eyes wide open was the following scene.
The five old masters held these gambling rocks and placed them carefully on the stone platform. Their expressions were very serious as they did this, then they summoned their respective Gu worms and began dissecting the rocks.
Most of the five old masters were at rank two peak stage while great master Duan was the only one in rank three. For a moment, the appearance of different Gu worms stunned the crowd.
"What in the world is going on!"
"Could it be these rocks have a long history behind them and aren't as simple as they look?"
"I have never seen the five old masters look this cautious and serious."
On the platform, Gu worms flew about as the five old masters showed off their unique methods.
Great master Duan whose cultivation was the highest was known as a great expert in dissecting rocks in the rock gambling den. He specialised in using acid to dissect rocks. He took out a king-sized bowl then summoned a snake Gu which spurted out acidic liquid into the bowl.
He then carefully put a gambling rock into the acid.
Bubbles continuously formed and popped in the acid.
After quite a while, with his hands covered in a layer of light, he took out the gambling rock which had shrunk by half. He then placed it into another type of acid.
Master Zhang used magnetism to dissect the rocks. His palms faced each other and the gambling rock was put in between them; the gambling rock floated in air and bits of rocks was continually extracted by the power of magnetism.
As for other masters; one called out a frog Gu which used its tongue to lick the gambling rock. Another used fire to roast the rock, and another controlled a small whirlwind to cut down the gambling rock.
The group of young rock dissecting Gu Masters watched from behind the old masters with a stunned gaze.
Why was there a need for such a great fanfare for some low grade gambling rocks? It was simply using an ox-cleaver to carve a chicken or using a talented person for an insignificant task!
'Could it be the old masters have some hidden intent for doing doing this? It won't do, I need to observe it properly.'
The results, however, made everyone flabbergasted. After the dissection, these low grade gambling rocks didn't have anything impressive; it was either solid rock or hollow inside, there was not even a dead Gu.
"What the! I thought there was something special going on."
"So they were all ordinary low grade rocks."
"Why were these old masters in such a hurry for? They really wasted my time…"
The surrounding spectators were greatly disappointed and stormed out.
The shopkeeper's face paled as he heard these remarks. In the past, he would have been really happy if the gamblers didn't get any Gu worms from the gambling rocks they chose. But now, he really wished he could stuff in some Gu worms inside the rocks.
Purple thorn token holders could not be easily offended!
He cautiously looked at Fang Yuan thinking of something to say to comfort him.
However, Fang Yuan was smiling: "No matter, it seems my luck isn't good today, so I will stop now. I will come again another time."
The shopkeeper and the clerk respectfully accompanied Fang Yuan towards the door.
They were even thinking of accompanying him out to the streets, but were stopped by Fang Yuan.
Only after Fang Yuan's figure disappeared in the street, did the shopkeeper lift up his bent back. He turned towards the clerk and gave a strong knock on his head, scolding him for neglecting an esteemed guest!
The clerk rubbed his head in pain, but did not dare to say anything.
Fang Yuan's purpose in coming here today was only to probe.
Now, since he found his target, his visit today was already achieved. But he couldn't directly take the stellar stone out, he would have to take twists and turns.
Fang Yuan needed to dissect the stellar stone to get the Gu, but he didn't have any ways to dissect it by himself. Collecting a set of specialized rock dissecting Gu worms would be too much of a waste, thus he would have to let the old Gu Masters in the rock gambling den take care of it.
It would only lead to a commotion if the old Gu Masters dissected the rock in front of everybody. And requesting them to secretly dissect the rock by using purple thorn token was also not appropriate and would only create suspicions.
If Fang Yuan got a legendary Gu worm right off the start, it would mean his luck was way too good.
Fang Yuan had no doubts of the huge influence of Shang Clan. With the recent investigation on him Shang Yan Fei probably knew about Fang Yuan winning the mudskin toad in rock gambling in Jia Clan's caravan.
Winning a mudskin toad on his first gamble and a legendary Gu in his next; a smart man like Shang Yan like Shang Yan Fei would definitely be suspicious.
The profits involved in rock gambling was huge; if Shang Yan Fei doubted Fang Yuan had some ways to check if the rocks had Gu worms in them or not, he was bound to be tempted and even make his move.
Fang Yuan had no such methods, but no matter what, some Gu worms on him could never be exposed.
Especially Spring Autumn Cicada.
And on Shang Liang mountain, Shang Yan Fei was not the main threat. The real main threat were the rank six Gu Masters.
Almost all the overlord level forces had rank six Gu Masters behind them.
When a Gu Master reached rank six, they would dwell in deep seclusion and rarely come out; one secluded cultivation could last for dozens of years. It was all because their strength would continue to experience a qualitative change and they had their own problems to take care of.
But it would all change if Spring Autumn Cicada was exposed; these rank six Gu Masters were bound to come charging in.
'A little impatience can spoil great plans.'
Fang Yuan was cautious by nature, how could he make such big mistakes in these small places?
He would put an end to all risks that could expose Spring Autumn Cicada, even if that meant there was a risk for the stellar stone to be discovered.
According to his previous life's memories, the probability of the legendary Gu being discovered was infinitesimally small. But even if it was discovered, Fang Yuan had already planned for it and it was better than attracting suspicions on himself and risk the exposure of Spring Autumn Cicada.
"Now, I will stroll around the rock gambling zone for few days and buys some gambling rocks to leave behind an impression on people."
Fang Yuan continued to scheme while walking back to Nan Qiu garden.
Bai Ning Bing was already back from Feng Yu Manor.
"I have been waiting for you." She took out the ice crystal Gu and gave to Fang Yuan.
Fang Yuan used the aura of Spring Autumn Cicada to refine it then threw it back to Bai Ning Bing.
Bai Ning Bing would help him in cultivation and he would help Bai Ning Bing in refining Gu; this was one of the terms in poison vow.
Bai Ning Bing took the ice crystal Gu and walked to a secret room to refine it.
Fang Yuan also walked to another secret room and began refining a Gu.
The name of the Gu — Eating one's words.