"Leader Lys, I am William Merlin, the one who consulted you last year when you visited the Merlin Family." William looked as if he had seen a savior. Regardless of whether he had hit the old man when pushing the door open, he introduced himself with an expression of pleasant surprise.
"Ah, it's you, William. Why are you so flustered..." Seeing that the newcomer was William Merlin, Lys' expression softened and his unhappy feelings disappeared. Over the past decades, Lys had taught several dozen alchemists in the course of his work at the Alchemist Guild. It was hard to avoid being partial to someone as talented as William.
Even if one disregarded his good relationship with the Merlin Family, he could still be considered William's elder. And it wasn't good for elders to bicker with the younger generation. But he couldn't help thinking that last time he met William, the latter had been very steady. How could he be so flustered in Thousand Sails City?
Unfortunately, William didn't know what Lys was thinking. All William could think about was how to make Mafa suffer.
"It's like this, Leader Lys. This Mafa Merlin fellow cheated me of an alchemy formula. I wanted to discuss with him just now and make him compensate me, but I didn't think he would be so unwilling that he would attack me inside the laboratory!"
After saying this, William threw a provocative glance at Lin Yun.
But this glance gave off the feeling of a weak person trying to appear to be strong.
William Merlin could contain his sense of superiority, unlike that idiot, Mason.
William knew that he had been wrong about Mafa being a failure that couldn't become a mage. Mafa was clearly a true, high-level Great Mage whose strength was far above William's.
This was undoubtedly a huge blow to William Merlin.
That realization was even worse than the two slaps on his face.
It turned out that this unknown outer family member was, in fact, a lot stronger than he was. He had been fostered to be an heir to the Merlin Family every since he was a child, and he was at least in the top five of the young generation in terms of strength.
But he hadn't expected that he would be knocked down in one move and then slapped twice in a small place like Thousand Sails City.
William couldn't accept this.
But being a scion of a major family had many advantages. Regardless of whether he accepted it or not, he would be able to come to terms with reality and immediately react.
William's method was very simple. 'Since I'm not as strong as you, I'll drag you down by competing in alchemy. I don't believe that you are as formidable in alchemy as you are in raw power. That's right, I'm going to frame you.'
William was quite confident that this was the correct way to approach the situation.
'I, an esteemed Great Alchemist, am going to frame you in front of a Master Alchemist. What can you do about it? Going to try to explain? Are you as knowledgeable as I am when it comes to alchemy? Are you as close to Leader Lys as me?'
Thus, after complaining to Lys, William threw a provocative look at Lin Yun and then revealed a smile full of confidence.
"Ridiculous!" Sure enough, Leader Lys' expression sank.
At this time, William Merlin was feeling extremely delighted. 'Heard that, Mafa? Leader Lys is already scolding you. The boss of a broken down alchemy shop in Thousand Sails City is being scolded by a Master Alchemist. I want to see how you can stay in Thousand Sails City from now on.'
"It's okay, Leader Lys. You don't have to get angry over such a trivial matter. I'll settle this." Lin Yun actually had a smile on his face as he said a few comforting sentences to Leader Lys.
William wanted to snort. 'You still think you can get away with this?'
William threw a disdainful smile at Lin Yun, thinking that Mafa was truly too naive. 'After getting an alchemy formula gained from cheating the Merlin Family, do you think you can get away with just a few sentences? Aren't you too naive?'
"This isn't a trivial matter, cheating an alchemy formula!" Lys was someone who would always keep his anger hidden, yet he was showing an extremely ugly expression on his face right now.
"Yes, yes, I know. Cheating an alchemy formula, I'll have a chat with William later." Lin Yun had a helpless expression. Lin Yun didn't know what he should say concerning this older cousin he had never met before. 'Seems like I need to have a proper chat with this older cousin after Leader Lys leaves.'
William didn't know what Lin Yun was thinking about.
The worse Lys' expression became, the more cheerful William felt.
'Yes, yes, this Mafa Merlin will quickly run out of luck.'
William was carefully keeping his thoughts from showing on his face while he looked at Lys' reaction from the corners of his eyes.
"Do you know what you are talking about?" Lys pointed at William Merlin. "Do you know how grave the accusation of cheating someone's alchemy formula is?"
William's mood rose as he inwardly repeated that sentence, but once he did, he couldn't help feeling strange.
'Why is Leader Lys pointing at me?'
"Truly ridiculous. You are framing Thousand Sails City's most outstanding alchemist of cheating you of an alchemy formula? William Merlin, is that how your Merlin Family educated you? Looks like I'll need to have a proper discussion with your grandfather when I visit the Merlin Family this year. We will discuss whether you are truly suitable to be the Merlin Family's heir!"
'Wait wait, did he just say... William Merlin? Damn, what does he mean by the most outstanding alchemist of Thousand Sails City? Shouldn't the most outstanding alchemist of Thousand Sails city be Master Alchemist Lys? When did I accuse Master Lys of cheating me of my alchemy formula?'
William's mind was in chaos...
All sorts of questions were popping in one after the other. But the answer to each question made William Merlin feel alarmed. He didn't even dare to confront these answers. If everything was true, it would be too frightening. Was this old man, Lys, talking nonsense, or was the world going crazy?
"Considering the reputation of the Merlin Family, I won't bother about your deception today. But, William Merlin, I will recount everything that happened here today to your grandfather, without missing a single fact." Lys glanced at William and coldly snorted. He then turned around with an apologetic smile. "I'm really embarrassed, Great Mage Merlin, I let you experience a farce. About the earlier condition, wait until I return to discuss it with everyone, I'll give you an answer in three days."
"Okay, I'll wait for Leader Lys' good news."
"Good, I'll leave first." Lys softly sighed before opening the door of the reception room, but he glanced at William again before leaving.
Although he didn't say much, the warning in that gaze made William Merlin's legs shake.
"So, dear Older Cousin William, don't you owe me an explanation?"
"This... That..." Only Lin Yun and William remained in the reception room at the moment. Thinking about everything that happened in the alchemy laboratory, William's already shaking legs couldn't keep straight. 'Fuck, this is a monster far stronger than me... If I'm caught again, would it still be two slaps?'
William was on the verge of panic.
'If Leader Lys stayed here, I could have counted on him to rescue me, but now that he left, I have to face that monster alone. That's too much pressure...'
"Oh right, I have yet to move my luggage!" After William Merlin said this, he ran away like a rabbit.
"..." Lin Yun watched as William Merlin escaped and couldn't help feeling stunned for a while.
After returning to the Merlin House's guest room, William Merlin was filled with worry.
'Damn, I'll really suffer this time... Not to mention being slapped twice, I offended the esteemed Master Alchemist Lys. How could Thousand Sails City become such a frightening place? Let alone a rising Master Alchemist, even that Mafa Merlin is far more powerful than me. Wasn't this place known for being barren and primitive?'
William Merlin truly didn't want to stay in this place, it was too strange and too abnormal.
If he could, he would immediately leave Thousand Sails City and return to the Merlin Family, never to meet that Mafa Merlin again.
Unfortunately, William couldn't leave yet.
Because he had come to Thousand Sails City this time to carry out a mission.
Besides helping a cousin that he had never met before, William Merlin had another mission.
The Merlin Family was in dire need for Nether Iron, but Nether Iron was scarce in all of Noscent. It was hard to mine, and there was a pitiful amount. The Merlin Family thought of various means, but they couldn't find a steady supply of Nether Iron.
But a few days ago, the Merlin Family suddenly received news that a large amount of Nether Iron weapons and armors appeared in the eastern Thousand Sails City. This news stirred the entire Merlin Family, and after following the clues, they found out that these Nether Iron weapons and armors came from an alchemy shop called the Gilded Rose.
And that alchemy shop belonged to a youth named Mafa Merlin.
It was actually someone surnamed Merlin.
Thus, the Merlin Family began paying attention to this matter.
As a result, they found out that this Mafa Merlin was actually a child of their Merlin Family that had ended up living outside the main family. His grandfather, Judd Merlin, was the younger brother of the Merlin Family Patriarch, Ofran. Several decades ago, he suddenly left with his son for Thousand Sails City.
After that, a lot of things had been excavated.
At this time, the Merlin Family found out that this child of their family living outside the clan wasn't in a good situation. Although the father, Locke Merlin, established a huge chamber of commerce, he had died in a shipwreck a few months ago, and his chamber of commerce went bankrupt overnight, leaving behind a debt of 8,000 golds.
Moreover, that Mafa Merlin wasn't fortunate. He was approaching twenty years but was still a 9th Rank Magic Apprentice.
Thus, the Merlin Family Patriarch, Ofran Merlin, personally gave an order, sending a youth of the Merlin Family to Thousand Sails City to help that child who was stranded in the outside world.
Naturally, the most important part was to make Mafa hand over the Nether Iron Vein, or whatever source he was getting the Nether Iron from. In exchange, the Merlin Family was willing to acknowledge him as a child of the family.