In the Core World, Bai Yunfei was seated on the ground with the chunk of darkwind meteorite in his hands. He was currently deep in thought.
Tang Xinyun was also seated in the Core World, though she was on top of a boulder. Every so often, she'd stare at Bai Yunfei.
Xiao Qi, on the other hand, was outside in the real world to guard the Core Stone.
The group split up a while ago. Jing Mingfeng and his great grandfather returned to the city since their investigation was done, and they didn't wish to incur any more suspicion for now. Bai Yunfei had already his clue and was done for the night. With nothing else to be done, they decided to split apart just in case they were found together and complicate matters for both sides.
He knew for a fact that Jing Mingfeng wasn't only here in Swallow City for the wind immortal grass. He didn't want to press the issue though; every man had their own matters, and Jing Mingfeng was his sworn brother. If he didn't want help from Bai Yunfei, then Bai Yunfei wouldn't push it.
He knew it had to do with the Qin though. The reaction Jing Mingfeng had when Bai Yunfei first mentioned their name had been far too strange. They were also found in the mines-which was under the control of the Qin-and Jing Mingfeng's grandfather was looking for something. Jing Mingfeng's 'business' in Swallow City definitely had to do with the Qin somehow.
The original plan was to go around Swallow City with Tang Xinyun until the auction started in three days. But with Jing Mingfeng giving him the chunk of darkwind meteorite, Bai Yunfei decided that it'd be best to fulfill his end of the bargain. He'd craft Jing Mingfeng his heaven-tier soul armament.
Three days was more than enough time for him to craft something.
Bai Yunfei and Jing Mingfeng both agreed that unless they needed something, they wouldn't meet until the auction three days later. If not, then Bai Yunfei would come to Jing Mingfeng's inn.
And so once Bai Yunfei was back in the city, he began the preparations to craft.
What was more alluring to a crafter than crafting a very powerful soul armament? Especially when they were allowed to use extremely rare materials to craft an extremely powerful soul armament...
Bai Yunfei thought that Tang Xinyun would want to go around the city, but she said she'd rather stay with Bai Yunfei and glean some insights off of him when he started crafting.
"Using this entire chunk of darkwind meteorite to craft a dagger might be a bit too difficult..."
Bai Yunfei muttered to himself as he weighed the object.
Jing Mingfeng's request for him was to craft a dagger. A dagger similar to the 'Blackwind' dagger he was using now. The problem was that the size of this meteorite was big enough to craft a large halberd and still have enough room to spare. Crafting a dagger with this ore would mean having a lot of leftovers. Jing Mingfeng did say though that he only cared for the dagger, and that Bai Yunfei was welcome to have the rest of the leftovers afterward.
This was a pretty good deal to Bai Yunfei. He was determined to try as hard as he could to craft the best soul armament he could for Jing Mingfeng.
This would be the first soul armament he'd craft as a Soul King. Crafters of that level were strong enough to craft low-heaven tier soul armaments if they wanted, but with Bai Yunfei's strength, he'd be able to craft a mid-heaven tier most likely. Today he'd put that to the test.
He thought hard about the best way to go about this. Waving his right hand, he brought out a pile of materials from his space ring. Aside from the ordinary supplementary materials, most of the materials here could be the main component in most soul armament crafting. He wanted to see which one would be best to work with the darkwind meteorite to improve the soul armament's power.
He couldn't so haphazardly throw a chunk of the meteorite into the cauldron without preparation. The best and most cautious plan would be to split the chunk up into four pieces and make an attempt with just one fragment for now.
Bai Yunfei didn't think he'd be able to succeed straight away. There was a lot that needed to be done like determining the compatibility between materials. But one or two failures would still be acceptable.
A bubble of fire surrounded the meteorite as he got started. Unleashing a single blade of fire made from his Flameblade Bracer, Bai Yunfei watched as it struck against the meteorite before disappearing.
But...the meteorite was completely untouched!
"It's this tough even when it's unprocessed. Just how tough will it get after I temper and refine it...?"
Bai Yunfei was amazed by the toughness of the ore. He took out the silver longsword he got from Li Fenghai. Because of its +10 additional effect to inflict nightmares, Bai Yunfei decided to simply just call the weapon 'Nightmare'. It had an attack power of six thousand and was currently one of his strongest soul armaments.
Bai Yunfei swung the sword twice to try and separate the meteorite chunk into four pieces.
The sword split apart the meteorite as he wanted, but Byf couldn't help but have a very strange feeling about something. He could feel the surrounding energy change a bit, but he couldn't put his finger on why exactly that was the case.
"Oh? This is a strange stone, what is this, Yunfei?" Suddenly, Xiao Fang appeared nearby to talk to Bai Yunfei.
"It's a chunk of darkwind meteorite. A special type of ore from the outside the heavens. Xiao Fang, did you notice something strange about it just now?"
"From outside the heavens? No wonder this stone has so much pure energy inside of it. The wind and darkness is perfectly combined in one another. Making a soul armament from something like this would definitely be extremely powerful. And..."
Xiao Fang looked deep in thought. If it could look like anything, anyways. "I felt a strange energy for just a split moment. It wasn't elemental wind or darkness. It was...weak, but there was definitely something else..."
"Really?" Bai Yunfei was curious, "There's something about this meteorite I'm confused about, but let's craft it first and see. We'll be able to see a bit more into the meteorite after we refine it..."
The Lightningfire Cauldron was brought out next, and his fireseed was taking out from the brick into the cauldron. Allowing for the cauldron to start heating up, Bai Yunfei then placed the meteorite and other materials into the cauldron to let burn...
Up next was the arduous crafting process...
An unknown amount of time later, there was a muffled explosion within the Core World as a soot-covered Bai Yunfei came out from his cave.
Coughing from within the smoke, Bai Yunfei had a gust of wind blow away all the smoke from his person. Because of his failure, his robes were badly singed and covered entirely with dust and ash just like his face.
"Are you alright, Yunfei?"
Already having been in the air for 'refuge', Tang Xinyun moved closer to Bai Yunfei out of concern for him.
"It's...it's nothing...I just never thought the darkwind meteorite would be so hard to work with. I lost my concentration and it exploded..." Bai Yunfei used the sleeves of his robes to wipe his face clean. He was still seeing stars, so he swung his head to hopefully clear his mind and shake off the rest of the dust. He looked like he had just stepped out from a kiln, and Tang Xinyun looked like she was on the verge of laughing with how ridiculous he looked.
He was vexed admittedly. This attempt felt far different than to any other attempt before. His previous hardest attempt had been with the boltstones, but even that felt just a tenth as difficult as with the meteorite. Bai Yunfei had no doubts that this material would've been impossible for him to even try crafting with if he wasn't a Soul King. As a Mid-stage Soul King, he was barely able to melt the meteorite to a useable level. The boltstone would've long since liquified with how much heat he was putting the meteorite under.
And he hadn't even touched upon the impurities he found within the meteorite yet. His attempts to try and refine the meteorite resulted in the rest of the materials being turn into ashes.
Regulating his energy for a break, Bai Yunfei decided to think hard on what he had to do. Each step of the crafting process was slowly broken down into substeps so he could find the best possible way to improve on the process.
When he had a good mental routine planned, Bai Yunfei took the second chunk of the darkwind meteorite to try again.
There was a second explosion along with a flurry of dust and ashes as Bai Yunfei came flying out from his cave again. He looked even worse than before with how his robes were hardly better than ragged strips.
He stewed to himself on top of a boulder while Tang Xinyun gently cleaned the grime off his face.
For a moment, he was as still as a statue as if his thoughts were anchoring him to the ground.
Then he stood up all of a sudden with such vigor that Tang Xinyun started a bit. She watched as he strode for the Lightningfire Cauldron and then sat down in front of it.
"I can't be too impatient for success. Perfectly removing all the impurities is unlikely, so what if I stop after I get rid of eighty percent of them? That should do the trick..."
He was muttering to himself now. Taking the third piece of meteorite from his space ring, he quickly deposited it into the cauldron along with several other supplementary materials...