Chapter 144 – Sonic Runes
Zuo Qiu Ming smiled brightly as he strode over to the new Runemaster. The sound of his crisp, joyful laughter echoed throughout the room.
“Mister Zuo.” Ye Wei happily bowed. Influenced by Zuo Qiu Ming’s laugh, he also smiled widely, safely assuming his application had been approved.
“Congratulations kid, your papers went through and the Qing state office already approved it!” Zuo Qiu Ming felt his words did not fully express his excitement, he applauded Ye Wei with a heavy slap on the shoulder, “Hahaha! Finally! Our branch has given birth to a New Rune!”
After getting approval from the Qing state office, it was quite certain Ye Wei would be listed after the standard procedures.
“Thank you so much Mister Zuo for your help!” Ye Wei politely gestured and bowed, relieved that his family was now more or less protected from Lu Feng’s possible schemes.
Under the pressure of the union, even if Lu Feng had the Lu family behind him, he could not risk his whole family being punished.
“Little man you are too nice; I am an official here at the union, and I am only doing my duty. The fact that a new talent, such as yourself, came out of this branch is something I should be proud of. If you don’t mind, just call me brother Zuo. Mister Zuo this, Mister Zuo that just sounds weird!” Zuo Qiu Ming casually smiled and looked at Ye Wei.
“Sure! If that is okay with you, brother Zuo!” Ye Wei smiled.
“Hahaha! You’re being too modest again. If it’s comfortable with you, just call me that!” Zuo Qiu Ming was not purposefully befriending Ye Wei to be obsequious. Once the news of Ye Wei becoming a Seven New Runes spreads, the whole state will know about it, ensuing requests of dubious friendships and uncertain alliances.
Ye Wei stayed in the elegant room; he wanted to chat with Zuo Qiu Ming more and not just about business. He found out more personal information including Ye Wei’s master as Zuo expressed a heartfelt admiration of Master Yi’s from stories of the master’s youth.
Although Ye Wei saw his master, day in and day out for three years of training, the master’s past seldom became a subject they spoke about.
‘So master is not a native of Green Moon City…’ Ye Wei began to discover how little he knew.
Thirty years ago, Master Yi passed his union entry exam in the capital, and during the same year he became a ten-star Runemaster, shocking the whole capital. That was one of the reason why Zuo Qiu Ming and other experienced Runemasters knew about Master Yi’s past.
“He was a ten-star Runemaster thirty years ago!? Then why is he still on the same level…?” Ye Wei asked himself, confused but hesitant to ask out loud.
Zuo Qiu Ming looked at the badge in Ye Wei’s hand and smiled, “this badge you are holding can save you life. Apart from trading goods and tokens, if you are in the field attacked by demons, wild beasts, you can inject your will-force into it and activate a distress signal function. Once it’s been activated, it will notify all Runemasters within two hundred kilometers, so they could come to your rescue. Of course it goes both ways.”
‘I must take care of it and keep it safe!’ thought Ye Wei. Even though the badge requires a Runemaster’s will-force for activation, it would still be troublesome if it fell into someone else’s hands.
“Additionally, news and messages from the region’s branch and the main headquarter will update everyday. You can find this information also on your device. That’s the primary way union branches communicate with each other. For example, the news of your passing at sixteen-years of age has already spread. It’s reasonable to conclude Master Yi has learned of your position as a three-star Runemaster now. Furthermore, when you officially become a part of the Seven New Runes, all union members will recognize your name!” Zuo Qiu Ming smiled and said, “from now on, if you meet a Runemaster, you can just tell them your name. They will know who you are and probably help you with whatever problems you may have. They may even assume you are an object of protection. Now with the questions on the jade walls it’s every man for himself!”
“Can the runic badge receive messages from the Runemaster Union?” Ye Wei was dumbfounded, but he regained his reason ‘if the badge can relay voice messages and holograms from the headquarter far way, receiving messages from the union should not be a difficult thing.’
“Apart from textual messages, five-star Grand-Runemasters and above can send and receive visual images. Yet, only a few people in the Zhou dynasty are capable of doing so. Normally, this is only done with drastic occurrences. Occasionally we can also receive images from demon emperors!”
“Can do what?” Ye Wei asked appalled.
“Well, you see, the Combat Master designed the badge long ago. It is packed with very powerful runes and runs on the surrounding primal energy. Some demon emperors accidently learned how the routing worked. Thus from time to time, they will harass us. However, you don’t have to worry about that. They are strong but usually do not do anything more than just taunt. Of course, we will know instantly if anything bad happens.” Zuo Qiu Ming patiently explained.
“Thank you for explaining all the details! Brother Zuo!” Ye Wei smiled and made a polite hand gesture.
“Haha! You are being modest again!” Zuo Qiu Ming laughed, appreciated Ye Wei’s humility and became even more fond of the young Runemaster.
After everything that had occurred, Ye Wei stayed in a guest room in the Ning City Runemaster branch, studied the runic badge and researched into rules and guidelines of the union.
Within in the next two days, he saw the most expensive things available to buy and the cheapest; thankfully, the cheapest items only costed single digit tokens, actually manageable to obtain.
“Security?” One of the columns on the catalog caught Ye Wei’s attention.
The Runemaster Union recruited powerful cultivators from different dynasties everyday, and union members could hire them as followers with contribution tokens.
“Hmmm, hiring a five-star condensed prime Warrior would take more than thirty thousand tokens!” Ye Wei exclaimed in his thoughts, thinking that it was actually a reasonable price. If he had enough tokens, he could even hire a god’s prime Warrior. However, hiring a returned prime Warrior would cost a few hundred thousand to millions of contribution tokens. Ye Wei finally decided this was not something he should waste his time looking into right now.
‘If we can get a few returned prime Warriors to look over the family mansion, even the Lu family wouldn’t be able to touch us,’ Ye Wei sighed, he wished he had more tokens to spend.
Besides mercenaries, Ye Wei was also interested in soul weapons. They were unenchanted weapons made of high quality materials. Every time Runemasters mastered a new stance, they would engrave the respective simplified rune sequence onto their soul weapons. These weapons would eventually become stronger, more suitable for their owners as they were exposed to each Runemaster’s unique will-force and Qi.
Soul weapons’ power will fade after their owners’ death., making them unable to be passed down.. Although they were high quality weapons, their prices were often less than the cost of mystic arms.
Ordinary soul weapons were made of thunder-gold, costing a few hundred tokens each. But the superior models made of emperor-jade, ancestor-gold and other more valuable materials could cost up to a few million tokens. The real value of soul weapons was their customizability; the stronger the weapon owner became the more powerful the blades and spears of the weapon would become.
Seeing all these treasures available, Ye Wei desired them, his inability to buy the sound quality weapons annoyed and upset. He didn’t want the items he could afford only the ones he couldn’t.
Ye Wei t began planning how he could quickly earn contribution tokens. He recalled what the hologram told him that the quickest and painless way to acquire tokens was to answer the listed questions.
He decided to turn his desires into reality. Activating the badge, he was immediately surrounded by a large wave of primal energy from the device as runes burst out.
Questions appeared in Ye Wei’s head.
“Are these all questions on the jade walls?” Ye Wei found many of the questions relatively easy to answer even though he was rewarded relatively low, only two tokens per question. Nevertheless, in a short time he gained around five contribution tokens..
‘It’s way quicker to earn tokens this way than to hunt demons!’ He concluded remembering how close to death he was while fighting the black mist clan demon.
What Ye Wei didn’t realize was that the demon general he fought was only that powerful because of the black scale. Otherwise, Ye Wei would have no problem hunting twenty demons of that level.
So, he just browsed and answered question after question. The further he read, the more difficult they became, and the more tokens they paid out. Although Ye Wei could answer a lot of the questions, he dared not to answer the more difficult ones as he was not quite experienced enough.
“This is the fifty-third wall, and each of these questions rewards more than ten thousand tokens! But, none can be answered with only simple answers. I need more experience and practical understanding if I want to efficiently earn more tokens!”
“My knowledge is actually very underdeveloped…” Ye Wei acknowledged. Slightly discouraged. Although the Mystic Mount’s presence in his Sentient provided him with a lot of answers and runic knowledge, he began to realize that a lot of them were not answerable until he had experience practicing them in reality.
Ye Wei went through another thirty questions only to discover they were all related to the applicational aspects of runes. He realized he would be better off answering the easier questions to slowly accumulate more tokens.
Just when he was returning to the questions before, a short, simple question grabbed his attention.
“What is this straightforward question doing here?!” The question related to specialized rune rewards to whoever could answer correctly. “How is this unanswered!?” Ye Wei double checked the wording just to make sure he was not imagining things:
“How is the thirty-second of the thirty-six runes from the Sonic Rune Set constructed?”
‘How can the answer to this question be worth two-hundred thousand tokens!?’ Ye Wei thought excitedly; all the other questions on the same section of the jade wall discussed how runes should be assembled with each other in order to maximize their power in combat and in stance creation setting.
He channeled his will-force and drew forth the rune in the question. Since there were over a billion rune shapes in Ye Wei’s head, answering a basic question like this was rather effortless for him.
Over a million miles away in the reign of Sacred Snow dynasty, three Grand-Runemasters sat around a table on the submit of a mountain, drinking and chatting.
“The Sacred Snow dynasty just keeps becoming stronger and stronger! We already have a hundred thousand passing the entry exam this year!” Said Yang Shuo. Being the union’s president in his dynasty, Yang Shuo often checked the figures to see how well the country was doing just in case he needed to strategize a plan.
“I have heard! It is a great pleasure to be working aside you and seeing how well our branch is doing!” The two Grand-Runemasters smiled and nodded.
Abruptly, all three of them were alarmed by a sudden surge of Qi disturbance coming from Yang Shuo’s runic badge, “Oh! I think someone must have answered one of my jade wall questions!” he said surprisingly.
“Oh no, who was unlucky enough to pick one of your annoying questions!? Haha!”
Yang Shuo lifted his head, took out the device, and frowned. He quickly stood up, shocked, “ guys, you need to see this!”