Chapter 11: Good Grade
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
A military saber, it was a real military saber.
Ou Yangming felt an upsurge of emotions when he looked at the saber in his hands.
In the past, he had restored military sabers that had stronger attributes than the one he currently held, which was almost like a blank slate, but one that was restored and one that was forged could not be discussed on equal terms.
This military saber was the first weapon Ou Yangming had ever forged.
It might not have great attributes, but its commemorative significance was extraordinary.
A wrinkled hand with calluses reached over for the military saber.
Ou Yangming looked at Old Craftsman eagerly, hoping to hear praise.
However, the old man turned the saber around to look at it for some time, then tossed it back to him. “It’s barely satisfactory, but it’s okay.”
Ou Yangming’s excitement instantly disappeared as though a pail of cold water had been poured on him, and sighed when he looked at the saber. Nevertheless, he was aware that though he smithed the saber, its attributes were no different from something forged by ordinary craftsmen.
For a Military Fire Blacksmith to create a military saber of this quality, it was actually very nice of Old Craftsman to have evaluated it as barely satisfactory.
Old Craftsman tapped on Ou Yangming’s shoulder. “Listen carefully, a real Military Fire Blacksmith isn’t an ordinary blacksmith. Each time you forge a weapon, you must use your heart.”
Ou Yangming was stunned. “Use my heart?”
He was puzzled. Ou Yangming was really attentive when using his Military Fire, and was never distracted. Why did Old Craftsman say that he was not using his heart?
Old Craftsman explained seriously, “Young fella, the Military Fire is a natural gift. Not only is it used for smithing, but it’s also used to probe an item’s nature. During the smithing process, you must use your heart to perceive the item’s nature, and evenly spread the best and strongest to the important parts.”
Ou Yangming widened his mouth, his eyelids twitching, and his heart pounding.
‘What’s an item’s nature, and how to spread it to the important parts evenly?’
Oddly enough, he felt that he grasped the main points of what the old man was saying.
Upon seeing Ou Yangming deep in thought, Old Craftsman nodded.
A master would lead one’s apprentice to the door, but the rest would be up to the apprentice’s effort. All Military Fire Blacksmiths had their own experience in the understanding and usage of the Military Fire. However, not all could pass on their experience, and not all experiences would be accepted.
That being said, Old Craftsman saw hope in Ou Yangming.
‘Perhaps this fella really can inherit my legacy, and will carry forward the experience I’ve gained over the decades.’
“Come, watch how I do it, and use your heart to perceive.”
Subsequently, Old Craftsman retrieved an iron ingot and began forging it using the Military Fire.
The Military Fire could only be used by consuming one’s physical power, and the old man’s was no longer at its peak. However, the moment he produced the fire with his hands, Ou Yangming was completely drawn to it.
Previously, Ou Yangming had not possessed the Military Fire, and only felt envy whenever he watched.
Since he acquired the fire, he comprehended it differently. The Military Fire appeared like a dancing elf to him, and under the elf’s guidance, the iron ingot underwent wonderful changes.
Due to his old age, Old Craftsman was extremely careful with how he used his Military Fire, and almost every bit of the fire’s energy was used to its limit. This was the difference between the apprentice and his master. It was certainly not a gap that could be filled in a short period of time.
Nonetheless, Ou Yangming was already practicing martial arts, and also had mental power to supply his Military Fire, so in terms of persistence, he was above Old Craftsman.
Old Craftsman’s Military Fire burned for some time before he exhaled deeply, then he handed the smithed military saber to Ou Yangming. “Did you watch me carefully?”
Ou Yangming took the saber carefully, then a light shone on his palm, and he quickly identified its attributes.
[Item: Outstanding military saber]
[Equivalent Rank: Ordinary Tool, Good Grade, Rank Two]
[Attributes: Sharpness +7, Toughness +5, Durability 7]
‘Ordinary Tool, Good Grade, Rank Two…’
Upon seeing the item’s equivalent rank, Ou Yangming was in awe.
This was because he understood the meaning of Good Grade better than he did before.
Back then, in order to produce a broken saber of Good Grade Rank One, which had a toughness of +6, he had had to put in a lot of effort on many abandoned weapons. It was this broken saber that easily broke Zhang Hanyu’s short sword, and even killed him.
Now, using similar iron ingots, he managed to smith an ordinary military saber, while Old Craftsman had forged an outstanding one that was of Good Grade Rank Two.
“I’m old and not that fit anymore.” Old Craftsman later remarked, shaking his head. “With raw material of this grade, I could’ve smithed something better in the past. Hehe, if I were to use aluminum, I can even smith one with a fine grade!”
Ou Yangming nodded his head non-stop. Since he had worked with the old man for many years, he was not a stranger to weapons’ grades and ranks.
Corresponding with a soldier’s martial art cultivation base, which were Force, Yin, Yang, and Extreme, armaments were separated into Common Grade, Good Grade, High Grade, and Fine Grade.
For all that, regular soldiers only used Common Grade armaments. The higher the grades of those items, the more precious they were, This meant that they could not be easily attainable by normal people.
Needless to say, weapons and armors of higher grades were more difficult to create. Even if a normal person wanted to smith a top-grade item, one would not actually have the raw materials to do so.
The qualities of the trial items made by Old Craftsman and Ou Yangming using iron ingots were quite decent, but forging Good Quality items was the limit of what iron ingots could be used for.
Old Craftsman was able to unleash the iron ingot’s extreme quality. Military Fire Blacksmiths like him were true masters, which was why General Chen Yifan regarded him with the utmost respect.
While he said that he was exhausted, he did not look like he was in low spirits at all. Instead, he began passionately explaining things to Ou Yangming.
Following his explanation and demonstration, Ou Yangming’s eyes glowed, and he slowly became more excited.
Old Craftsman chuckled. “That’s all the experience I have. If you’d like to try, get started!”
“Okay!” Ou Yangming nodded. He retrieved another iron ingot, then began following Old Craftsman’s words. Instead of releasing his Military Fire right away, he took a deep breath to calm himself down as much as possible.
During the smithing process, one had to be so focused that one could ignore any sort of noise, even someone shouting right in one’s ears.
Of course, it was impossible for Ou Yangming to achieve that now, but he would get there if he kept working.
Right when he calmed himself down to a certain level, a purple light shone in his mind, and an ice-cold aura filled his body. Even so, he did not feel cold at all. His consciousness withdrew from his body, and he observed it from a distance.
Under this wonderful condition, his mental state became exceptionally peaceful, as if his feelings had been sealed away. He became like a robot and was completely emotionless.
Afterward, his Military Fire ignited in his hands.
As the flame burned, the iron ingot gradually transformed into a military saber.
Old Craftsman stared at Ou Yangming closely, paying close attention to the Military Fire that appeared like a dancing elf. His face reddened as he mumbled, “How is this possible?”
Ou Yangming was trying his best to imitate what Old Craftsman did earlier. Although it was impossible for him to do it as effortlessly as the old man had, due to the difference in their experience, Old Craftsman saw a charm through his dancing fire.
It was an indescribable feeling, similar to what he had been pursuing after using the Military Fire for decades.
He held his hands together tightly while he watched the light that he had never seen before.
There was only a thought in his head at that moment.
‘I have a worthy successor, I have a worthy successor!’
Ou Yangming was fully immersed in what he was doing. When the military saber was about to be formed, a sentence appeared in his mind.
[Upgradable composition found, upgrade?]
Previously, he would have been distracted if this happened, but since he was completely composed now, he picked yes without any hesitation.
Therefore, his Military Fire lasted for a longer time, and the accumulated purple lights in his mind began drifting toward the military saber.
However, when one of the lights moved, he forced it back to his mind.
Whenever the military saber’s attributes fluctuated, Ou Yangming used the Military Fire to distribute them evenly to the important parts.
All of a sudden, he had a feeling that he could not increase those attributes anymore, because the saber’s raw material would not be able to withstand it.
As such, he shook his wrist a little, and the burning Military Fire slowly dimmed until it disappeared.
Consequently, a brand new military saber was formed.
Using the Military Fire, a list of details appeared brightly.
[Item: Outstanding military saber]
[Equivalent Rank: Ordinary Tool, Good Grade, Rank Five]
[Attributes: Sharpness +10, Toughness +10, Durability 6]