Chapter 0013: Li Luo's Black Hole


With his excited emotions, Li Luo spent the whole night tinkering. 

When morning arrived, Li Luo rubbed his heavy eyelids whilst sitting in the attic. His gaze was staring expectantly at the wooden boxes before him.

About half of the spirit liquids and purifying lights had already been consumed.

He realized that he had neglected something important. Even though he had a blank palace and was unconcerned with the impurities, absorbing these treasures required time, and just chugging the whole lot in one go wouldn't work... In fact, this was actually counterproductive as these spirit liquids and purifying lights would interfere with each other.

Hence, he was only able to absorb twenty-seven portions.

Of course, if anyone else heard of this matter, they would write Li Luo off as a complete madman. No one would ever engage in such debauchery!

Twenty-seven spirit liquids and purifying lights in one night? Not only would it result in a massive heap of impurities, the individual's palace would likely be sealed off not too long after!

Only people who were at the end of the road would deign to take such a wasteful and insane action.

These people would succeed or die trying.

"It seems like the results aren't bad..." Li Luo's regret over his "mediocre results" also naturally dissipated. His gaze brightened when he realized that the glow emanating from his first palace had become purer than before. Even his flowing resonant power seemed to have transformed, becoming even more vigorous and refined.

At the rate he was going, Li Luo calculated that he would require another hundred portions of fourth-grade spirit liquids and purifying lights to raise his waterlight resonance to the fifth-grade.

Upgrading his fourth-grade resonance to the fifth-grade would incur an approximate total cost of two hundred thousand skygold…

This sum was honestly something that Li Luo could still bear. However... the likely cost to temper his resonance again after that would be a little... excessive.

This was because fifth-grade spirit liquids and purifying lights were multiple times more expensive. Additionally, the amount required to temper his resonance would also undoubtedly increase. 

By his calculations, raising his resonance from the fifth-grade to the sixth-grade would likely cost him about a million pieces of skygold?

And then from the sixth to seventh.... that would be countless millions...?

What about after that?

The thought of the resources required for Li Luo's tempering caused him to feel a little stifled. Although he wasn't directly managing things, he knew that House Luolan's yearly profits from managing every business was only a few million pieces of skygold.

Even if he swallowed up every existing asset that belonged to the house, it would be extremely difficult to raise his resonance to the eighth-grade.

This acquired resonance was basically a money-sucking black hole!

Unknowingly, Li Luo started massaging his temples... Dad and Mom, the house you left behind isn't enough to support this wastrel…

"Though... if I'm able to refine my own spirit liquids and purifying lights, then I would be able to save quite a bit." At this very moment, Li Luo thought of his own waterlight resonance. From a certain point of view, this was also his strength. If he was able to develop his talent in it, it was very likely that the spirit liquids and purifying lights which he refined would be the best in the field. It looked like he would have to bring forward his plans to learn the arts of a resonance artificer. 

"It looks like Mom and Dad considered this situation in great detail... This is why they wanted me to become a resonance artificer. Otherwise, I might very well be the one who truly destroys House Luolan from the inside..." Li Luo sighed once again. He truly had to respect his parents' foresight.

Li Luo did not continue thinking too much about this issue. In any case, he should just barely have the means to cover the costs of bringing his resonance up to the sixth-grade... He would take things as they came.

Hence, he shook his head to clear his mind and retired to his bedroom for some well-deserved rest.

For the following two days, he continued to cultivate feverishly day and night. In the day, he would practice his Azureflood Meditation Diagram till he had to stop. After which, he would spend two hours honing his resonance arts. To finish the day off, he would proceed to utilize spirit liquids and purifying lights to temper his resonance.

His full fledged efforts bore fruit. His resonant power quickly arose to the Fourth Seal Stage and his fourth-grade waterlight resonance became increasingly purified.

It was at this point that Li Luo felt that he was on top of the world. Just what could stop his ascent to the very top?

As it turns out, nothing too outlandish.

Shortly after, things came to a screeching halt as he exhausted his store of spirit liquids and purifying lights... bringing his great hopes to a temporary pause.

......

Within the old manor, inside the administrative office. 

Cai Wei was garbed in a long robe as she sat in front of the table. Her slender body was accentuated by her well-developed assets, which spilled forth from her chest, making her a remarkable sight. Currently, her beautiful, rounded face was filled with a frown as she examined a record before her. 

"Manager Gu, don't you think the decrease in the profits from the Tianshu Province is a little severe?" Cai Wei shifted her gaze from the record to the manager in front of her.

The middle-aged man addressed as Manager Gu bitterly smiled as he nodded. "General Manager is right. House Luolan originally possessed nine stores, eighteen mines, and countless pharmacies... However, because of the instability within the house, the other three houses in the Tianshu Province have redoubled their efforts to swallow up our interests in the past year.  The Song Family is the largest culprit. Out of the nine stores we own, two of them were suppressed by them. They swallowed these businesses up when we were unable to maintain them." 

Cai Wei's gaze turned frosty after hearing this. House Luolan had built its foundation within the City of Southwind before ascending with utmost speed to become one of the Xia Kingdom's Great Houses. 

Within the Tianshu Province, there were three other large families which House Luolan had to contend with. When one looked at things from the perspective of the Xia Kingdom, these three families could never have hoped to compare with House Luolan. However, within the Tianshu Province alone, they were old powers with significant influence, deeply rooted and with solid foundations.

When the two House Lords were around, House Luolan was like the sun at its zenith. These three families were extremely shrewd and listened to every word from House Luolan. Who would have expected that once the House Lords disappeared, they would immediately contest House Luolan's interests and start to rock the boat? 

Cai Wei had once heard from Jiang Qing'e that there was most likely an invisible hand behind the curtain guiding these three families. This was a supreme power that was constantly seeking to test House Luolan's bottom line and the truth of their situation.

The families in the Tianshu Province were known as the Song family, the Bei family, and the Difa family. The strongest amongst the three being the Song family. This was also the family that acted out the most during these past few years. They would utilize all sorts of means to suppress and to get a piece of House Luolan's businesses. 

One had to also know that the Song family’s head would turn up to offer New Year's greetings each year without fail in the past. 

This 180-degree change in personality even seemed like an orchestrated play.  

Cai Wei, on the other hand, was an experienced soul and would not harbor any naive thoughts. House Luolan's existence had previously suppressed the interests of these three families. Now that the house was full of internal strife, having their feet stepped on was not without reason nor was unexpected. This was the price of doing business. Despite this, the situation was not the same as in the past; one had to treat the other party seriously as an enemy to prevent any further issues from arising.

However, the current House Luolan was unable to deliver too much assistance to save the fire raging within the Tianshu Province. Every location was under significant amounts of pressure, and with Pei Hao's existence being a constant timebomb... this was truly adding fuel to the existing inferno.

With this dilemma on hand, Cai Wei was engrossed in deep thought, trying to figure out the best solution. Eventually, she came to a decision. "Temporarily shutter all the businesses that are unable to operate. There is no need to tangle with the opponents." Knowing when to lie low was a necessity. Once the situation in House Luolan stabilized, these families would be forced to spit out every last bite they had taken.

Hearing her decision, the few managers near her immediately acknowledged and proceeded to carry her instructions out. They too understood that the situation of House Luolan within the Tianshu Province was not the most critical thing in the grand scheme of things.

Knock, knock.

At this point, someone knocked on the door to the office. Cai Wei instructed the knocker to enter, and when the door opened, a certain Li Luo strode right in.

The managers immediately greeted him respectfully.

Waving his hand to signal he wanted to speak to Cai Wei personally, the group of managers were ordered by Cai Wei to leave the room. Following which, her beautiful eyes affixed themselves on him. "Young Lord, may I know if there are any problems?" 

Li Luo coughed lightly and smiled. "Indeed. I seem to have run into a little problem which requires Elder Sister Cai Wei's assistance." 

Cai Wei's captivating eyes and willowy eyebrows blinked as she felt that something just didn't seem right. Still, she asked, "What sort of problem?" 

Li Luo, giving his most warm smile, replied without skipping a beat, "Honestly it's nothing new. Do you remember the fifty sets of spirit liquids and purifying lights? Well, I've sort of finished them all. Could I kindly trouble Elder Sister Cai Wei to assist me with procuring another... hundred sets?" 

The expression on Cai Wei's white and smooth egg-shaped face froze up a little. Her beautiful pupils continued to focus on Li Luo as her chest gradually began to heave up and down.

"Another... hundred sets? All fourth-grade?" Her two palms were currently clenched extremely tightly. Just how long had it been since she started managing the Tianshu Province's finances? Could it be that this was the day they were going to go bankrupt? Was she going to be the sinner of House Luolan, the one responsible for crippling its very foundation? 

Finally, she could no longer hold back her rampaging emotions, immediately slamming her first down angrily on the table before her, an expression full of fury.

"Li Luo! Are you trying to get me fired?" 

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