"I heard that Teacher sold a favor to Mafa Merlin worth ten spirit mana crystals!"
"Thankfully, I only burnt Solomon..." Suyass couldn't help feeling apprehensive after hearing all that. Thankfully he hadn't directly harmed Mafa Merlin, or else he might have wasted a favor worth ten spirit mana crystals.
"Haha..." Karon chuckled and remained silent.
Karon originally wanted to say that he might not necessarily be able to burn Mafa Merlin even if he tried.
Karon had some knowledge of the young Great Mage's strength. When Hoen of the Cloud Tower left for Thousand Sails City to act against Mafa Merlin, the Star Sage himself assessed that Mafa Merlin had the strength to take Hoen down with him. At that time, Mafa Merlin was only a 5th Rank Great Mage.
Now, Mafa Merlin was already approaching the High Mage realm, making him many times stronger. If he and Suyass truly came to blows, the outcome would be hard to determine.
But Karon felt that Suyass had suffered enough for one night and wouldn't be able to endure such a hit to his pride.
The two chatted about the situation in the Golden Forest Plane before both going to sleep around midnight.
Early in the morning, Karon left the camp. The battle was still raging in the Golden Forest Plane, and although Grant was there to oversee it, his strength and prestige were far from equal to Karon's. He might be able to manage the situation in the short term, but he wouldn't be able to handle it for long.
Karon was still a bit uneasy before leaving and warned Suyass a few times to rein in his own temper.
Suyass readily consented.
It could be seen from this that although Suyass was rather blunt and direct, he wasn't narrow-minded like Fran.
As for Fran...
He hadn't been able to sleep during the night.
Fran originally was hiding in the tent to watch the scene unfold. He had been in a cheerful mood when he saw Suyass burn Solomon's arm and force Lin Yun into the bet over breaking the Tenebrous Array, because it all followed his plans.
Fran had expected that Mafa Merlin would lose the bet, and his arms, too. The exploration team would have no choice but to seek help from Suyass and himself to break the Vaughn Treasury's arrays.
With Suyass' nature, he would disdain to haggle over the price, so that task would be left to Fran himself. The price he would quote at that time wouldn't be just half of the magic materials. He would raise it by 20%. And what if they didn't agree? He would just take Suyass and leave. Who would be the one breaking Vaughn Treasury's arrays then?
But he never expected Karon to appear...
Moreover, Fran couldn't understand what had unfolded before his eyes. Why did it look like Karon knew Mafa Merlin? And why was Suyass apologizing to Solomon? What did Karon slap Suyass for? Why was it so different from what he had imagined?
These questions perplexed Fran for the whole night. Whenever he closed his eyes, these questions would fill his mind. Fran originally thought of finding an opportunity to ask Karon indirectly what he had told Suyass the previous night, but before the opportunity came, Karon left.
'What should I do? Do I have to ask Suyass?'
Fran was hopeful at first. After all, they were both from the Mercury Tower, so they were from the same side. Even if Suyass was usually rather thorny, he wouldn't show it openly in front of the others
But Fran hadn't expected the actual result...
Not only had Suyass shown it, but it was even more intense than usual. After the two of them saw Karon off, Fran was about to ask a few words when Suyass coldly snorted, "Fran, you had better be honest!"
Fran was startled on the spot and ran away...
That afternoon, the expedition began cleansing the Four Seasons Canyon.
It was a joint decision made by the leaders of the nine major forces after losing a dozen scouts. They had sent several batches of scouts to find traces of the Vaughn Treasury, but they lost a dozen of them in the process.
"Push another meter deeper!" Solomon, who had recovered from his burn, had a heavy murderous aura.
Although the Four Seasons Canyon had already broken away from the influence of the ancient tree and the magic beasts weren't as fierce as before, it was still a very arduous fight for the members of the expedition force.
Under Sasu's lead, the team of several hundred people slowly started moving towards the depths of the Four Seasons Canyon. During that day, they fought a dozen battles, the largest of which happened next to the Four Seasons River's sole tributary. When the joint exploration team moved there, they met a group of over a hundred Thunder Elephants.
That battle alarmed even Suyass. That Archmage with the title of Magic Flame had openly shown his might in that battle. During that hour-long battle, Suyass floated in the sky, almost evaporating the river with the swarm of fire spells that he shot out. After cleaning out the battlefield, everyone realized in shock that at least half of the Thunder Elephants had died from Suyass' flames.
On the contrary, Lin Yun didn't make a move...
Lin Yun had remained in his tent, focusing on processing his previous reward.
Successfully cracking a True Spirit Array was an opportunity that was desired by any Master Alchemist, but that couldn't be obtained when sought. The rewards were too great, and Lin Yun needed to spend all his time digesting this. Over a few days, Lin Yun's skills with arrays increased by leaps and bounds leaving him about twice as skillful as when he entered the canyon.
As for external battles, Lin Yun wasn't worried. He had already experienced the frightening beast tide and personally gotten rid of the source. Although the fighting outside was fierce, it wasn't enough to pose any true danger for the expedition.
Moreover, Suyass had joined them. He was a genuine Archmage, and he was able to greatly reinforce forces. It could be said that as long as Suyass was willing to put in some effort, the joint exploration team would easily clean up the entire Four Seasons Canyon.
It was because of him that Lin Yun had no issue just staying inside the tent, single-mindedly focusing on his own task.
But Lin Yun actually sent Xiuban to participate.
Xiuban's first Draconic Mana Pattern had appeared. It was starting to awaken, and what Xiuban needed the most right now was the chance to participate in fierce battles.
The 2nd day passed, and then the 3rd, and the 4th...
Days passed one after the other, and soon, they had been in the Four Seasons Canyon for a week.
During that week, not only did Lin Yun improve his skills with arrays, but Xiuban also got stronger day by day. The previous night, Xiuban had followed the exploration team and annihilated a squadron of several dozen Shadow Wolves before entering the Expert Swordsman realm. Moreover, four mana patterns had appeared on his skin.
As an Expert Swordsman, he was considered top tier among the melee fighters of the entire joint exploration team. Xiuban's fighting strength was a few times higher than it had been before he met Lin Yun.
Xiuban's strength now completely suppressed William's, to the point that William complained a few times, saying that he had been born the wrong race. He was putting so much energy into meditation, yet he wasn't as efficient as this Draonic Beastman who spent his time mostly sleeping and eating...
"Carefully study the Crimson Heart, this is your foundation." Lin Yun simply ignored William's complaints. Given his incredible growth in just the past few months, what right did he have to be dissatisfied?
Moreover, it only seemed unfair when comparing others to Xiuban.
The problem was that Xiuban's growth speed wasn't comparable at all. When a Draconic Beastman just awakened, their growth speed would be the most amazing part. Let alone William Merlin, not human could compare to him. That was the advantage of races and bloodlines.
The week quickly passed, and the joint exploration team had already combed the greater half of the Four Seasons Canyon, from east to west, and they had already annihilated thousands of magic beasts. Fortunately, the Silver Moon Mercenary Group and the Flash Arrow Mercenary Group were both experts at handling animal corpses. They specially picked a group to handle the corpses of the magic beasts. Over the course of a week, all kinds of mana crystals piled within the camp, forming a small mountain.
But there was still no trace of the Vaughn Treasury.
Lin Yun had sent away the Draconic Beastman as per usual to get some experience while he remained within his tent to do some array research. While he was calculating a key piece of data, footsteps and a heavy voice could be heard outside the tent.
"Merlin, follow me quickly! The Vaughn Treasury has been found..." Solomon entered the tent and grabbed Lin Yun without saying anything.
"Eh?" Hearing this, Lin Yun put away his quill, followed Solomon, and soon reached the outskirts of the forest.
There had clearly been a fierce battle, as magic beasts; corpses littered the ground and blood was seeping within the earth. The air reeked of a thick smell of blood, but no one was paying attention to that. Several hundred people started digging at Sasu's command.
"Sir Suyass found some clues here. After discussing it, we arrived at the conclusion that the treasury might be here," Solomon explained, pointing into the distance.