Zhu Yao did not idle outside for too long. After instructing Yu Luo to teach Yue Ying about cultivation, she once again returned to that lava cave and began her repetitive daily life of hammering iron. Initially, she had thought that forging was a simple matter, especially for a Demigod like her. However, in actual fact, she realized that it basically wasn’t the case at all. The forging work for mystic artifacts did not simply involve knocking and hammering the materials with spiritual energy. The first batch of half-finished products she forged, was basically a pile of scraps.
Only a single one still maintained a hint of spiritual energy, however, at the very most, it could only be used to chase away ghosts or something similar. If she wanted to use it to defend against enemies, it would basically be taken as a joke. Zhu Yao was a little depressed. Clearly, she had hammered it with much more force than anyone else, but in the end, she was worse off than everyone else.
If she were to compare weapon refinement to education, then currently, at the very most, she was at the standard of a kindergartner.
“Master, why does this happen?” Clearly, she had worked so hard already.
“Every material has its own elemental characteristics. Mystic artifacts are the same as well.” Yu Yan lightly explained. “The materials have a limit to the amount of spiritual energy they can take as well.”
“You’re saying, there’s a need to use spiritual energy of the same element, in order to forge out an actual mystic artifact?”
“Yes, and no.” Yu Yan continued. “The key lies in what kind of mystic artifact you wish to refine it to be.”
In other words, if it was a mystic artifact used for flight, then there’s a need to have sufficient amount of wind spiritual energy. If it’s a water type mystic artifact, then there’s a need for water spiritual energy.
“I understand now.”
Zhu Yao once again began to smelt another piece of profound iron. This time, she did not forge it the way she had done before in the past. Instead of smacking and beating it haphazardly, she simply gathered a hint of wind spiritual energy. With every hammering action, she had it seep into the mystic artifact. However, the strange thing was, although the wind spiritual energy had already been transferred, the amount absorbed by the iron was becoming smaller and smaller.
Zhu Yao guessed that it was related to the rate of spiritual energy absorption this piece of iron possessed, hence, for her next strike, she reduced her spiritual energy output. As expected, the amount of spiritual energy absorbed this time and previously was exactly the same.
For this particular forging attempt, Zhu Yao had spent four to five times more effort than her previous attempts. And in the middle of the forging, she had even returned to smelting it for a few more times.
Picking up the shaped iron that had been completely forged, Zhu Yao could sense that it was filled with wind spiritual energy. Zhu Yao could finally head into the next step, and that’s engraving formations. Formations were her strong suit. A mystic artifact used for flight, would naturally need a formation used for flight. This time, Zhu Yao wasn’t greedy, and simply engraved a single formation into it.
In an instant, the spiritual energy that was still surrounding that sword-shaped iron earlier, instantly retracted, and was sealed tightly in the formation. The surrounding wind spiritual energy in the air as well, now faintly carried a hint of fondness to the sword.
The final step was polishing it, and Zhu Yao did not take it lightly either. By following the orbit of the formation in order to prevent the leak of spiritual energy, she slowly polished a smooth blade.
Finally, her first artifact had taken shape.
Zhu Yao was a little excited. After all, this was her first successfully crafted artifact. Although it was the most basic flying sword, she still happily showed it to her master.
Yu Yan slightly narrowed his eyes, swept a huge glance at that sword, and in the end, muttered out. “First rank. Low grade.”
“…” Zhu Yao’s glass heart shattered and fell onto the ground. What happened to the promise of cultivating your disciple’s self-confidence?
Forget about it being a first rank mystic artifact, it was after all, a flight mystic artifact. As mystic artifacts were already capable of flight with just being first rank, she did not have that high of an expectation in the first place. However, for it to be low grade…
The hell, she simply did not believe that she was unable to refine a high grade mystic artifact.
Zhu Yao once again immersed herself into crazily levelling up her life skill. Since she had already grasped the correct refining method, the success rates for her next forges had evidently increased. When she could finally forge a second rank medium grade mystic artifact out of this low grade profound iron, she gave up on this material, and proceeded to using materials of a higher grade.
Hence, she spent her days knocking and hammering like that. Zhu Yao believed that after being familiar with this handicraft, she had found a few tricks to it. And if she were to engrave formations now, she could finally engrave two formations into the mystic artifact at the same time.
After an unknown length of time, when she was finally able to refine an Ice Stone into a fifth rank mystic artifact in one attempt, she suddenly realized that every time she inserted spiritual energy into the material, it would actually dwell inside as strands. And with every strike of her hammer, the number of strands would increase. When she had forged the material into a usable state, she realized that those strands had yet to fill even half of the entire material.
This was a surprise. Could it be that by filling up the strands, the amount of spiritual energy the mystic artifact could harbour would reach its limit? With this thought in mind, Zhu Yao did not stop forging, and instead, continued to insert spiritual energy into the material, allowing the spiritual energy inside to slowly accumulate.
The translucent figure floating above the pendant sensed his disciple’s anomaly. Glancing at her familiar back, the corner of his lips slightly moved. She had finally comprehended it. As expected of his… Mn, what was that?
Zhu Yao excitedly filled the entire piece of iron with spiritual energy, believing that she would definitely be able to forge an unbelievable mystic artifact this time. But, she failed.
The material was ruined.
Because she realized that, because it was completely filled with spiritual energy, there wasn’t a single space left for her to engrave her formations! And she even thought of the polishing process at the very end. If she were to accidentally chip off a certain piece of the material, the spiritual energy inside would disperse completely from that small crack.
She had only thought of inserting more spiritual energy into the material in order to raise the mystic artifact’s rank and grade, and had actually forgotten about these situations. ORZ.
No matter how much spiritual energy was put in, without formations to guide them, then it would simply be a piece of scrap metal. Zhu Yao’s heart squeezed.
With a slightly aching heart, she gave up on this Ice Stone which was filled spiritual energy. She then once again took out a similar material, and continued to practice.
This time, she did not simply think of inserting spiritual energy, instead, she began to arrange the strands. She drove the spiritual energy towards the two sides, and left a place in the center in order to engrave her formation. Although the spiritual energy was less than the previous one, she had actually spent even more time than before. Inserting spiritual energy was a huge process in the first place, and furthermore, she had to now think of ways to arrange the strands after inserting them.
This was the first time Zhu Yao felt a little powerless, as she had to spend huge amount of effort to arrange the spiritual energy strands. When it came to engraving the formation, it was a much simpler process. However, when it was time to polish it into its actual form, it was another huge problem. No matter how careful she was, there was still a small crack in the end, which caused the spiritual energy to instantly disperse completely.
Zhu Yao felt her heart ached.
Finally, after more than ten failures, she made a successful product. Although it was only a fourth rank mystic artifact, it was a high grade product. As expected, hard work would be rewarded. In her future products, most probably, she would be able to make one with a penultimate grade.
Just as she was about to work even harder, she realized that the Ice Stones, the material she had been using, were depleted. Hence, she could only use another material of the same grade, the Black Ores, to replace them. However, while she was forging, she realized a huge problem. Those strands which represented spiritual energy could not be seen.
Flips table. Then how was she going to continue practicing?
Zhu Yao once again picked out various materials to test them out. Other than the Ice Stones, there really wasn’t any spiritual energy strands in the materials.
Zhu Yao was a little dumbfounded. After taking a few deep breaths, she was finally able to calm down, and began to ponder about the reason. Theoretically speaking, these materials used to make mystic artifacts, were all capable of taking in spiritual energy. Just what made the Ice Stone different from the rest? After pondering for a moment, other than its colour, there really wasn’t anything else which was different.
Colour? Could the reason be because that white was much more transparent than the rest of the colours, and hence she was able to see the strands clearer than the rest? Hoho, don’t joke around.
Zhu Yao didn’t believe it. If that’s the case, that would mean that she was unable to see through this rock with her naked eyes, while her divine sense would be…
The hell, her divine sense was really able to see them.
Did the reason have to be so coarse and simple?
Zhu Yao, who was even unbelievably anxious earlier, was momentarily a little speechless. She silently picked up her hammer, released her divine sense, and continued to arrange the strands.
To forge mystic artifacts of higher ranks and grades, more spiritual energy would be required, and so, the time spent would be even more as well. Initially, Zhu Yao had thought that with the Demigod stage cultivation as her foundation, inserting spiritual energy like this would basically be a small matter. That was until she felt a huge drain in her spiritual energy for the very first time, and in her hands, was merely a half-completed sixth rank mystic artifact.
Only then did she realize, this life skill that she hadn’t thought was important all this while, could be so energy consuming. She had no choice but to meditate in order to recover her spiritual energy.
And situations like this happened even more after this incident. When she was finally able to forge an eighth rank mystic artifact, she had already depleted all of the spiritual energy in her body twice. She finally understood why everyone had to go into closed-door training when they wanted to refine pellets and artifacts. In situations like this where spiritual energy would be completely drained out of them, if they were to head out and hang around in that condition, then they would basically be targets that could be instantly killed off.
“Master, there aren’t any supplies left.” Zhu Yao glanced into the storage ring. The huge pile of materials inside had already been completely depleted by her. However, she had only managed to refine an eighth rank mystic artifact, and it was even a low grade.
Yu Yan frowned, before he slowly said a moment later. “You can smelt the mystic artifacts inside.”
“The mystic artifacts inside…” Zhu Yao glanced into the ring on her hand, and suddenly widened her eyes. “Master, you can’t be referring to the pile that you have completely refined, right?”
Zhu Yao suddenly felt like flipping a table. Those were all above eighth rank, and most of them were even tenth rank mystic artifacts and treasures. And you want me to smelt all of them just like that? You spendthrift.
Yu Yan, however, kept a calm face. Those things, were initially materials in the first place. They were all refined while he was bored and had nothing to do. Having them revert back to materials was a natural thing to do.
“Do you really want to smelt them?”
Ouch! Her heart ached. She couldn’t even bear to throw away that first rank flying sword. Master, why are you such a tycoon?
Zhu Yao pondered for a moment. It was a must for her to continue raising her weapon refinement skill, but if she were to smelt these high ranked mystic artifacts…
After hesitating for a long while, with trembling hands, Zhu Yao picked out a few of them which were of rather low quality, and began to smelt them. As she smelted them, blood was flowing from her eyes in place of tears. Because she had dwelled into the art of artifact refinement for so long, she could understand how precious these mystic artifacts were.
Let’s first put aside the materials, the intricacy of the formations engraved on them, was completely not much simpler than the sect’s Great Mountain Formation Barrier, which she could not comprehend no matter how much time she spent analysing it. Formations that completely combined offense and defense of five different elements, and some of them even had the storage functionality within them. They were perfect mystic artifacts that could both attack and defend.
Ouch. Her heart ached so much.
Most probably because of the guilt of destroying a penultimate grade mystic artifact, Zhu Yao paid even more attention in her forging process later on. Although she still made products that were comparable to medium grade, at the very least, not a single failure had appeared yet.
She was already capable of engraving dozens of different formations onto one mystic artifact. The mystic artifact she could now refine, had broken through to the ninth rank as well.
When she had expended quite a number of mystic artifacts in the storage ring, she could finally refine a tenth rank mystic artifact. Though, it was still a low grade.
Zhu Yao finally felt that it was time to stop, and get down to business, as she spoke out her initial thoughts of this matter.
“Master, I wish to make a unique mystic artifact. I require a special reflective material, what do you think is the most suitable?”