"Leader Lys?! How could he be a Master!?" William gasped. How could he not know the Leader of Thousand Sails City's Alchemist Guild, Lys? A few decades ago, Leader Lys had been in a good relationship with the Merlin family, and ever since then, he would leave for Okland every year and visit as a guest of the Merlin Family. He even gave some pointers to William the previous year.
But William never could have imagined that the Great Alchemist from last year had already become an esteemed Master Alchemist!
After all, there were only 6 Master Alchemists in Okland, the core of the kingdom. Every single one of them had a very influential position in the kingdom and they weren't people that even the powerful Merlin Family would rashly offend.
Master Alchemists had reached a frightening level of proficiency in their craft, giving them nearly boundless power as each of them had a peak power of the kingdom standing behind them. Even if the Merlin Family had over a thousand years of history in Okland, the consequences of offending a Master Alchemist were far too grave.
'Damn, am I in the right place? Is this really Thousand Sails City?' William wondered, feeling disoriented. 'Is this really the eastern part of the kingdom, famous for being barren and primitive? The Thousand Sails City that was only acknowledged for its shipbuilding industry? Is someone playing a trick on me?'
He was having trouble accepting the situation.
'If this place really is Thousand Sails City, how could a Master Alchemist appear here? ...Hold on, Master...'
As his line of thought reached this point, William suddenly calmed down. 'Isn't it great that Leader Lys became a Master Alchemist? After all, the Merlin Family's friendship with Leader Lys has lasted for decades, and he even gave me pointers last year. It's perfect, I can take advantage of this and have Leader Lys seek justice for me! With the decades of friendship, he wouldn't allow me to be bullied in a place like this!'
William could practically see his revenge playing out.
'If Leader Lys learns that this damn Mafa dared to attack a direct scion of the Merlin Family, he would definitely not let him off. Just a word from Leader Lys would close down the Gilded Rose. I wonder what kind of expression that Mafa Merlin will have once his store is shut down!'
William Merlin promptly wiped the corner of his mouth and arranged his black robe, covering the scar on his neck as much as possible. Once he was done, he chanted a Water Screen spell and made sure that he looked fine and proper. Only after that did he push open the door to the alchemy laboratory and headed downstairs.
Lin Yun had already been talking to Leader Lys for some time.
However, Lys didn't mention that alchemy formula, and neither did Lin Yun mention the fifty Alchemists. The two seemed to maintain a tacit agreement not to say anything about the lucrative deal they had made.
Their discussion seemed to revolve around potioneering. One was a Master Alchemist, leader of the Alchemist Guild, while the other was someone who had mastered alchemy knowledge that transcended time. If outsiders heard this discussion, they would think that it was an exchange of knowledge between two alchemists of similar level, but who would think that of these two people, one was a Master Alchemist that was nearly a hundred years old, while the other wasn't even twenty.
"Great Mage Merlin, do you have some free time?" This was the first time Lys brought up a topic other than potions.
"Haha, Leader Lys, why are you asking this?" Lin Yun had a smiling expression, but he was inwardly vigilant. He had talked with that person for about ten minutes and Lys hadn't hinted at anything during that time. But how could Lin Yun not know that he was a fox that could compare to Solomon and Monchi?
'Suddenly asking if I have time right in the middle of a discussion about potions! Leader Lys, you are a sly one aren't you...'
"Not long ago, our Alchemist Guild found an ancient ruin," Lys explained. "After conducting some research, we confirmed that it was left by the 3rd Dynasty's last Artisan, Vaughn."
'Vaughn Treasury!' Lin Yun realized, feeling quite startled.
At this moment, Lin Yun really wanted to tell Leader Lys, 'Aren't you a bit too direct?'
'That's Vaughn Treasury...' He thought about what he knew about it. 'The 3rd Dynasty's final Artisan, a famous existence in Noscent's history. The only Artisan to name six alchemy formulas with his own name.
Those six alchemy formulas were called the Hexagram Star of Vaughn.
But these six formulas were lost after the 3rd Dynasty. It was rumored that before his death, Vaughn hid these formulas in his own tomb, and that tomb was named Vaughn Treasury.
Lin Yun knew that this rumor was correct.
Because a thousand years later, the major forces of the kingdom would be caught in a chaotic, decade-long war due to Vaughn Treasury. That war swept in all the major forces, and ultimately, the Hexagram Star of Vaughn landed in the hands of the Ivory Tower. Heaven Mage Bane stood out during that chaotic war as he finally stepped into the Heaven Rank.
But it was a thousand years too early, so how could the Alchemist Guild have found it already?
"Why me?" Lin Yun asked.
"Haha, Great Mage Merlin, you are underestimating yourself. If people had to pick out the most talented alchemist of Thousand Sails City, I believe that 99% would choose me, Master Alchemist Lys..." As Lys said this, his smile gradually vanished. "But I would definitely choose you."
"Hmm..." Lin Yun was suddenly at a loss. To be honest, Lin Yun really didn't think that he had such a great position in that Master Alchemist's mind.
"Vaughn's ruin is filled with alchemy puzzles. I think that you might be the only one talented enough to solve these puzzles," Lys continued.
"Crystal Island is a bit far away..." Lin Yun truly felt pained. He obviously didn't want to go to Vaughn Treasury, but he couldn't say it.
Nothing could be done about it since Lin Yun couldn't just tell Lys, 'I already mastered the Hexagonal Star of Vaughn, so I have no interest in Vaughn Treasury, go have fun with it...'
A lot of trouble would come his way if he said something like that...
Thus, Lin Yun made it look as if he wanted to go but couldn't because he was busy and because it was too far away. If Lys insisted and wanted to drag him on a boat trip, he would use the trauma of a shipwreck.
"Crystal Island? No, no, no..." Lin Yun hadn't expected that Lys would laugh instead when he heard that. "Everyone thought that Vaughn Treasury was located on Crystal Island, but they were actually wrong..."
"Eh?" Lin Yun was stunned. This didn't make sense. The Ivory Tower's people recorded that they found Vaughn Treasury at Crystal Island!
"The ruin we found is located in the Four Seasons Canyon, north of Edge Rift."
"It truly isn't in Crystal Island?" Lin Yun wasn't convinced. Heaven Mage Bane's personal notes recounted the scene of the battles happening on Crystal Island, ten years of battles. Could Heaven Mage Bane have lied about that?
Otherwise, how could Vaughn Treasury appear in the Four Seasons Canyon?
'Hold on... Four Seasons Canyon! Isn't that the location of Vaughn Laboratory?'
"Hm... Okay, Leader Lys. Who is participating?" Lin Yun suddenly made his decision when he thought about that. Vaughn Laboratory was a lot more valuable than Vaughn Treasury.
After all, that laboratory not only had all kinds of alchemy items made by Vaughn, but it also had all kinds of precious materials that Vaughn had plundered during his life.
Speaking of plunder, the Hexagram Star of Vaughn had to be mentioned.
It was rumored that the Hexagram Star of Vaughn was a Teleportation Gate leading to Hell. Besides displaying the outstanding achievements of Vaughn, that name also secretly was ridiculing Vaughn's greedy and ruthless nature.
Vaughn sat on the position of Chief Alchemist of the 3rd Dynasty for over a hundred years. During those hundred years, Vaughn plundered in an almost berserk fashion. Countless innocents lost their lives, and countless precious magic materials were sent to Vaughn Laboratory, some of which could be considered amazing even during the peak of the magic era.
Lin Yun wasn't interested in the Hexagram Star of Vaughn, but he absolutely couldn't miss out on Vaughn's collection of magic materials.
"In addition to Thousand Sails City's major forces, the Mercury Tower will also send a powerful team."
"Good. I'll also go, but I have one condition before we set off. I have no interest in the Hexagram Star of Vaughn, but I want priority when it comes to choosing materials from those left behind by Vaughn." Lin Yun paused, but before Lys could turn him down, he tossed in a hard-to-refuse condition. "I'll be in charge of cracking all alchemy arrays!"
"Cracking all alchemy arrays!" Lys repeated. He almost gasped when he heard that.
He had thought that his evaluation of this young Great Mage was high enough...
But it seemed that his understanding of Mafa Merlin was far from clear enough.
Those were the alchemy arrays left behind by the final Artisan of the 3rd Dynasty. Even if that Master Alchemist from the Mercury Tower came, he would only dare to say that he would do his best. But Great Mage Merlin here treated all the alchemy arrays as one package and didn't say he would "try" but that he would crack them...
What amazing courage and self-confidence.
What frightening level of alchemy was behind that courage and confidence?
"Great Mage Merlin, this isn't a game..."
"Rest assured, Leader Lys, I can guarantee it."
"..." Lys looked at Lin Yun for a short time before helplessly sighing. "Okay, I need to consult with the others. I'll give you an answer three days later at most."
"Haha, then I'll be waiting for Leader Lys' good news." Lin Yun actually kept an indifferent expression on his face because he knew that Vaughn Laboratory wasn't like the Gilded Rose Laboratory where even a piece of trash like William Merlin could rush in. That place was the laboratory of the final Artisan of the 3rd Dynasty. It wouldn't be an exaggeration to compare it to a tiger den or a dragon lair. Those who hadn't been there wouldn't know how terrible it was.
Not to mention everything else, even if one only considered those defensive alchemy arrays, they couldn't be broken by just any Master Alchemist.
It could even be said that in this era, the only one able to break those alchemy arrays before entering the Artisan realm was Lin Yun.
Thus, Lin Yun felt quite at ease as he boldly announced his conditions.
Because he knew that no matter the result of their discussion, they would have no choice but to ask for his help in the end.
"Youths nowadays are getting more and more difficult to deal with..." Lys shook his head and stood up from his chair after refusing Lin Yun's invitation to stay longer. He was in a confused state of mind as he went to the reception room, planning to return and digest everything that he had heard today.
But when he was about to open the door, it was fiercely opened from the other side.
The newcomer was William. This older cousin had a pleasantly surprised expression on his face as he approached. "Leader Lys, it's great that you are here!"
Lys took two steps back to take a clear look.
Lys actually had some impression of William Merlin.
When he visited the Merlin Family the previous year, Lys had given a few pointers to that youth. He'd had no other choice but to admit that this youth was truly a rare talent in the field of alchemy. The young man was merely in his twenties, yet he had reached the rank of Great Alchemist already. Thinking about it, Lys couldn't help being impressed. The Merlin Family was worthy of being a millennium-old family. When it came to the field of education, they were far more outstanding than those nouveau riche families.