AGM 0019 – Natural Born Weaponsmith
Weaponsmiths, other than needing to cultivate, would still need to devote their time to gain insights regarding the divine imprints needed for the creation of divine weapons. The majority of weaponsmiths were like Francis, and would accept forging requests in exchange for wealth. Naturally, they wouldn’t devote their entire efforts into the creation of every single piece of divine weapon manufactured. What most would do, would be to follow in the steps of Francis — to use metallic liquid that was mixed according to a golden ratio, set them into the cast of the embryo, and then inscribe divine imprints onto them.
Qin Wentian, based on the request of Francis, poured the metallic liquid into the embryo casts, before setting them aside and allowing the liquid to cool and condense into the embryonic forms of the weapons. At this moment, Francis passed a small refining furnace to Qin Wentian as he instructed, “Go to the Materials Hall and get 0.5kg of bronze, 0.25kg of silver sand, 0.5kg of bloodstones, as well as a few kilograms of starsteel and aluminium.”
“These materials are for forging the sword — and not just any sword, but an extremely light and nimble sword.” After Qin Wentian obtained the forging memory fragment, there was, of course, information regarding the various types of materials. As a result, he somewhat understood the purpose of each material. Bronze as the main material, silver sand to give the weapon a shine, and the other materials were used to refine the sharpness, as well as lighten the weight of the sword while, strengthening the main body of it; especially the bloodstones and the starsteel — they were all considered expensive and valuable metals.
“Grandmaster Francis, is this the sword you’re intending to create for Lin Yue?” QIn Wentian probed.
Francis cast a sidelong glance at Qin Wentian, before stating coldly, “Not bad, you have some small smattering of knowledge, knowing that these materials are for the forging of a nimble sword. Her father and me have a deep friendship between us, and she herself is a cultivation genius, so the weapon will be forged for her, therefore I will naturally devote more effort into it. You must’ve offended her on purpose to gain her attention, right? But let me urge you to stop dreaming and to give up that idea. If you are willing to be my apprentice for three years, I will graciously impart to you some of the simple basic-level divine imprints for you to gain insights into.”
“Three years of apprenticeship, yet only imparting knowledge of basic-level divine imprints?” Qin Wentian murmured. He knew that weaponsmiths placed an immense amount of emphasis on divine imprints.
“What? You find the period of three years too long for your taste? Do you know how high a price I paid to obtain these divine imprints from the Star River Association?” Francis coldly snorted, “Go, collect the materials which I have stated.”
Qin Wentian lightly nodded his head in agreement, as he went to the materials hall to collect the necessary materials, passing the furnace back to Francis when he returned. After which, Francis poured the materials into the huge smelting furnace, melting them down into the metallic liquid.
“The earthfire used for the refining and creation of weapons was naturally provided by the Star River Association. If it wasn’t for the assistance of them, many weaponsmiths would be incapable of melting the forging materials — it was indeed tough to become a weaponsmith.” Qin Wentian lightly sighed in his heart; the toughness of forging materials, such as starsteel, was so high, that ordinary fire wouldn’t be able to melt them.
Especially, if one wanted a top grade divine weapon; the higher the grade of a divine weapon, the tougher the materials would be to melt.
And not to mention, to a weaponsmith, the toughest as well as the most crucial step to forging a divine weapon was the knowledge and ability to inscribe the necessary divine imprints.
After the metallic liquid was poured into the individual embryonic casts, Francis waited until cracks had appeared on the surface of the embryonic casts, before he instructed Qin Wentian to place the sword-form embryonic cast onto the surface of the stoneforge. Raising a finger, Francis lightly tapped on the embryonic cast as it broke apart, revealing a fiery red embryonic sword that was glowing from the heat of the earthfire.
“At this moment, before the sword has fully completed it’s cooling process, is the best moment to inscribe divine imprints onto it.” Francis indifferently explained, as he concentrated. Suddenly, there was a slight fluctuation in astral pressure, as he raised his index finger. His index finger began glowing resplendently, while emitting Astral Qi, before transforming into the shape of an astral carving knife.
“This is an Astral Soul. The form of Francis’ Astral Soul was actually a carving knife, and can’t be considered a forging-type Astral Soul. However, when used to inscribe divine imprints, it’s still adequate and sufficient, well up to the task.” Qin Wentian silently stated in his heart. Francis then directed the astral carving knife to inscribe divine imprints onto the surface of the sword, making no moves to mask his actions from Qin Wentian. After all, even the simplest divine imprints were complex beyond belief, the drawing of each runic line during carving, especially when the runic lines intersected, were as complex as the mystical energy channels in the human body. It was difficult to discover just from the naked eyes.
However, what Francis didn’t expected, was that each of his movements were fully seen, and the intent behind his actions were clearly understood by Qin Wentian, who was standing at the side.
“This is a basic-level, sword-form divine imprint. It can increase sharpness of the sword, as well as boosting the attack power of the user. However, the divine imprint carved by Francis looks extremely crude, almost to the point of a children’s drawing.” Qin Wentian’s heart was as pure as a mirror, emptied of distractions, and naturally he wouldn’t reveal anything. This Francis didn’t possess a forging-type Astral Soul, and had to carve the divine imprint by hand. His talent was also ordinary for a weaponsmith, so for the crude carving of the divine imprint, it couldn’t entirely be blamed on him.
Actually, Francis himself knew that his carving knife Astral Soul didn’t possess any advantage on the path of cultivation. Hence, he decided to fully devote his efforts on pursuing the path of a weaponsmith. In the dao of weaponsmithing, he could still be considered to have some small accomplishments, yet never would he have thought that he’d be despised by a mere fledgling — by Qin Wentian.
“If you can manage to learn these divine imprints from me, I can guarantee that, in this lifetime, you won’t have any worries about living in comfort.” Francis had no idea what Qin Wentian was thinking as he spoke with pride, his tone filled with hints of a light contemptuous laughter. He cast a sidelong glance at Qin Wentian, while concurrently inscribing the divine imprints on to all the embryonic divine weapons, and waited for them to cool down before further tempering the body of the weapon, sharpening the edges, matching them with the necessary accessories such as scabbard, etc.
As for the divine imprints that were inscribed during the post-embryonic cast phase, there were no outwards indications of them. It was like the divine imprints had all disappeared, as if they had fully amalgamated with the weapon, becoming the “energy channels” of the divine weapon.
“Try it yourself.” Francis passed a recently forged divine weapon over to Qin Wentian.
Qin Wentian held the sword, as his astral energy surged, entering into the weapon. At that same instance, Qin Wentian could feel a sort of innate connection — akin to the one shared between flesh and blood — connecting him with the weapon. This feeling was incredibly hard to describe; he felt as if his own blood vessels, meridians and energy channels had been linked together with the sword, as the Astral Energy within him began to flow into the divine weapon.
“How mysterious.” Qin Wentian had just embarked onto the path of cultivation a few days ago, and thus, he’d never had contact with divine weapons before. He didn’t expect that divine imprints would actually have such a miraculous effect.
“Today, you’ve already witnessed the process of forging. If you still want to be a long-term apprentice, in the future, I’ll devote my focus on carving the divine imprints, while the rest of the forging processes will be carried out by you. How about it?” Francis asked, as he looked to Qin Wentian.
“Grandmaster Francis, I won’t come here often, but if I have the time, I would help you with what you mentioned earlier. I have no need for any compensation.” Qin Wentian replied. Actually, contained within the memory fragment, there were already methods of forging of divine weapons, it was just that he had to personally experience it himself so that he could comprehend more.
When it came to the forging of a divine weapon, the inscriptions of the divine imprint were still the most crucial step. As for the other segments of the forging process, he only needed to grasp which materials combination needed to be used for the forging of different types of weapons; including grasping the techniques of sharpening the blades, etc. As for the type of flames used for refinement, as long as one was in the Star River Association, there was no need to worry about that all.
And because the materials in the Star River Association were all ready-made, Francis could easily manufacture a batch of low-graded 1st level divine weapons. But, even if it was a low-graded 1st level divine weapon, to the majority of the people in the Body Refinement Realm, they were still considered priceless treasures.
“You don’t know what’s good for you.” Francis coldly snorted, “I’ll go and take a rest, help me dispose of all the remaining waste material.”
Looking at the back of Francis as he departed, Qin Wentian knew that this person was pretty crafty indeed. Obviously, he only needed a day to create a bunch of low grade divine weapons, but he told his customers to come back in three days. This would signify that to craft the divine weapon, he would need a great deal of time.
But naturally, if Francis truly devoted all his time and energy into the forging of a divine weapon, he would truly need three days — because the inscriptions of the divine imprint were truly a difficult task. There couldn’t be any mistakes when carving the runic lines — it would only take a single mistake to cause the whole inscribing process to fail.
After Francis left, Qin Wentian pulled another embryonic sword-shaped cast over, and he poured the metallic liquid that was mixed with the golden ratio in, as he prepared to try it for himself.
“According to the memory fragment I received, divine inscriptions and divine weapons, can both be divided into 10 levels – 1st level divine weapons will need to be complemented with a 1st level divine inscription, and 2nd level divine weapons at the very least, will need a 2nd level divine inscription to complement it. As for divine inscriptions of the 2nd level and higher, they’re all a result of evolution from the combination of basic-level divine imprints. The higher level a divine imprint is, the harder it is for one to gain insights into it. As for the 3rd level divine imprints stored in my memories, I can’t even see the basic outlines of them yet.” Qin Wentian silently intoned in his heart.
After cracks appeared on the surface of the embryonic cast, he placed the cast onto the surface of the stoneforge, and as he applied pressure with his palm, the cracks widened as the cast broke apart, revealing a fiery red sword. The Astral Energy in Qin Wentian’s body started to interweave frenziedly, congregating into a focal point, and transforming into the shape of a picture of a sword-shaped divine imprint. The name of this 1st level divine imprint, was known as ‘Flying Sword’.
In his palm, the shape of a Heavenly Hammer materialized, as the divine imprint made of Astral Energy in his body began being transferred onto the bottom side of the Heavenly Hammer, before eventually being branded there.
Qin Wentian raised his arm, as he ferociously swung down the hammer accurately onto the sword, as the brand of the divine imprint began amalgamating with the sword, becoming the “energy channels” of the divine weapon.
“Hu……” Qin Wentian sucked in a deep breath, as he wondered about the result of his experiment.
Removing the Heavenly Hammer, as Qin Wentian started to use the various tools provided to further polish and grind the weapon — just before the final step, before he’d sharpened the edge of the sword, Francis returned. His expression turned sluggish as he looked at Qin Wentian’s actions, before furrowing his brows and saying, “What’re you doing?”
“Grandmaster Francis, I’m trying out the polishing and grinding process.” Qin Wentian candidly replied.
“What do you treat this place as? Do you know the embryonic cast and metallic liquid you wasted, was sufficient enough for me to create a divine weapon? Can you afford to compensate that?” Francis loudly thundered, as rage clouded his features, slowly stomping his way towards Qin Wentian before forcefully knocking his arms aside, as the unsharpened blade that was in Qin Wentian’s hands fell onto the ground.
“Today, Grandmaster Murin will be here for an inspection. Count yourself lucky, I won’t pursue this further. Scram immediately!”
Qin Wentian’s expression stiffened. This Francis, although he was just a weaponsmith of average talent, was truly arrogant indeed. Qin Wentian coldly snorted as he indifferently departed.
“That useless fellow, to think that I had actually pitied him and wanted to accept him as my apprentice.” Francis exclaimed in rage.
Qin Wentian at this moment, had already departed the room, only to see there were a few figures wearing the robe of the Star River Association walking past him. The man in the center had an extraordinary disposition, and was accompanied by a pretty teenage girl, as well as an elderly fellow.
Murin, although he was the Division Leader for the weaponsmith division of the Star River Branch of the Sky Harmony City, had recently been transferred to the Royal Capital. The reason for his return today, was to inspect if the level of the weaponsmiths here had improved.
Qin Wentian and this particular man briefly passed by each other. That teenage girl lightly swept her gaze at Qin Wentian, and merely from that gaze, Qin Wentian could feel the arrogance of a weaponsmith.
“Francis, why are you so angry?” That moment, Murin and his company walked into the forging hall.
“Grandmaster Murin, division leader” Francis bowed, as the rage clouding his features melted away, replaced by a warm smile.
“Right.” Murin inclined his head, and walked inside into the interior of the forging hall, as he stated, “Let me check on the level of your progress.”
After saying this, coincidentally, he saw the sword that had fallen to the ground next to the stoneforge, as he picked it up. Looking at the failed creations of someone, may be a more accurate gauge of their true abilities.
Just as Francis wanted to interject, all of a sudden, the expression of Murin beamed with radiant joy as he turned his body towards Francis, exclaiming in surprise, “Francis, how did the standards of your forging technique have such a huge improvement?”
Francis froze, as Murin passed the sword over to him. With a slight intention of his will, Astral Energy, as well as Yuan Energy, flowed into the sword as the expression on his face got increasingly fascinated.
“How is this possible?” Francis found it unbelievable.
“To forge this sword, the materials used by you should have been the pre-mixed metallic liquid. But the inscription of the divine imprint was so exquisite to the point where it was nearly perfect, putting even myself to shame. Although it’s just a 1st level divine imprint, to be able to reach such a pinnacle, I’m afraid that even 2nd level weaponsmith masters wouldn’t be able to accomplish it.”
Traces of a smile flashed through his eyes as Murin spoke to Francis, “At the end of this year, I intend to bring with me a capable assistant to the Royal Capital. It seems that I already know who to choose. Francis, this sword was surely forged by you right?”
Francis slightly hesitated, as he grit his teeth. There was no way he could afford to miss this chance.
“Fine, I’ll give you three more days. I want you to use all your efforts to forge a divine weapon, allowing me to truly see the peak-level of your skill.” Murin laughed, as he turned and left the hall.
Francis’s heart thumped wildly, as his countenance paled. Just now, he’d claimed credit without truly thinking it through, but now, how on earth could he manage to carve out the perfect form of a divine imprint? Truly, greed harmed people.
“That brat from earlier……. Right, I must find him!” Francis’ heart palpitated rapidly. He’d surely be finished if he failed to find Qin Wentian.