Two days later, Lu Yin weaved through the comets flitting through space and appeared at a dull yellow planet. This was one of Iltoco’s recycling plants; the entire planet was under their control. His spaceship was allowed to land after they confirmed his identity and purpose, and he met a plump middle-aged man with a bright smile down below.
“Welcome to Iltoco; I am Ahke, the manager at this small plant,” the middle-aged man said eloquently.
“I’m Lu Yin,” Lu Yin said with a node.
“Welcome, Student Lu. Let me give you a tour,” Manager Ahke said cordially, hiding his shock at the surname.
Lu Yin looked up at the dark yellow sky without any trace of a sun. The thick layers of yellow clouds gave off an oppressive feeling that was anything but welcoming. He shook his head, “It’s alright, Manager Ahke, please bring me to the mission location.”
“Alright, come with me” Ahke nodded, leading him to a giant plane that quickly left the station and flew into the distance. He started a brief introduction to the plant, “Student Lu, this planet is full of toxic gases that make it unlivable. Iltoco bought it specifically to store scrap metal; the stuff is everywhere, from abandoned spaceships and planes to weapons and armor…”
Lu Yin looked on calmly. This was a planet approaching its demise; perhaps it had birthed a civilization once just like Earth, but various causes had left it on the verge of destruction. It could only be used as a dumpyard now, and a few hundred millennia could drive it out of existence.
The ground was unbelievably dry, with not a single source of water to be seen anywhere. People in hazard suits were sifting through all the rubbish down below, likely slaves that Iltoco had brought over from other backward planets to search for useful items in the trash. There were more of these people than he could count; had Earth not been protected by his identity, its cultivators would have been sent to battlefields and the normal people would join those down below, living on such abandoned planets and sifting through rubbish until they died.
“Student Lu, which disassembler do you use?” Manager Ahke asked. There was just too much garbage in the universe, and a considerable portion of it was man-made. Many companies sifted through abandoned trash and reused what they could; this both reduced their costs and cleared the universe’s trash. There were many different models of disassemblers, devices powered by star energy that could strip materials apart. The better one’s control of star energy, the finer the disassembly. Astral-10 accepted such missions because it trained students in star energy control.
“I don’t need any disassemblers,” Lu Yin replied.
Ahke was stunned, “I’m sorry, what did you say?”
Lu Yin frowned, “Find me a quiet place, I don’t need any disassemblers.”
Ahke’s eyes gleamed and he nodded, ordering the plane to change directions. Half an hour later, they stopped beside a hill, “There is no one here, Student Lu, and there are many abandoned machines all around. You can use whatever you want; rest assured that no one will watch.”
Lu Yin walked down from the plane and frowned at a breath of pungent gas. While this gas wasn’t toxic to cultivators, it stung.
“I’ll have someone get you an air freshener,” Ahke offered immediately.
Lu Yin shook his head, “No need. You can leave, I’ll call you when I’m done.”
Ahke didn’t bother with any more pleasantries and just left. Once he was on the plane, however, he switched his gadget on, “General Manager, the student from Astral-10 doesn’t need any disassembler. He either relies on his star energy or some innate gift.”
“Must be an innate gift; he’d need to be a lockbreaker to disassemble materials with star energy alone, and he wouldn’t accept a mission like this if he was. Don’t bother him; wait for the results and we’ll see,” a pleasant female voice rang through. Ahke acknowledged and hung up.
The mound Lu Yin had been brought to wasn’t all that tall. He flew up and looked through the countless abandoned planes and spaceships in his surroundings. They came in all sorts of sizes, with the biggest one extending far into the horizon. Glancing at the dark yellow clouds, he stretched his limbs and summoned his die, “Time to start, let’s hope I roll a two right away.”
With so many days since his last roll, the die was already emitting hazy starlight at this point. Lu Yin gulped with the same nervousness he felt every time he rolled, tapping on it lightly to set it off. It spun rapidly and landed on Pilfer, at which point a thump followed as a large sword dropped down from the portal. He picked it up and exerted some force to test it; it wasn’t bad but was more suited to Melders and he had no use for it right now. Putting it away, he retrieved a cube of star crystals to replenish the die and set it off again.
His luck was rather good this time, and he landed on Blackhole Disassembly on his second roll. Elated, he didn’t think further to crush eighteen more cubes and extend the duration just like Timestop. One cube provided about 160 minutes of extension, double that for his Timestop domain. Eighteen were enough to run the thing for a day.
“Just a little too small,” he muttered to himself before picking up a random discarded instrument and tossing it in. The item passed through and an unknown material landed on the floor below. He took a deep breath, “Alright, time to start.”
Lu Yin pushed the mountainous heap of trash towards the vortex. Although the thing was small, anything that passed through its domain was disassembled. He only had to move things back and forth, consuming the entire mountain in only two-ish hours to leave behind a considerable pile of all sorts of unrecognizable materials. He thought of the previous situation with the cosmic rings and guessed these materials could be passed through again to produce something more precious, but he hesitated to do so. His speed would already be questionable anyway.
A day thus passed with Lu Yin spending his time disassembling a considerable batch of abandoned machinery. Everything around him seemed a little emptier by the time he was done, and the materials formed a significant heap. He wondered how much income that would be, but after some thought decided to crush eighteen more cubes of star crystals for another day.
When Ahke received a notification after two days, he immediately flew out to Lu Yin’s location once more. Seeing two tiny hills of disassembled materials, however, he had to rub his eyes vigorously to believe it was actually real. How did he recycle so many things in only two days? Even Limiteers with the most efficient disassemblers couldn’t do this much in a month. This was far too efficient! For a moment, Manager Ahke looked at Lu Yin like he was a deity.
Lu Yin coughed, “How is this, Manager Ahke. Enough?”
“Of course! You’ve completed your mission, Student Lu, and exceeded the quota by a large margin. But, did you do all this by yourself?” Ahke asked suspiciously. Some students had brought in a lot of disassembled materials in their cosmic rings to complete missions before, claiming that they had done the work. Iltoco didn’t care because it was pure profit, but the amount before his eyes was far too much. Just how many cosmic rings could a student bring? Was this even real? How could he do it so quickly?
“I hope it won’t be too much trouble to calculate my reward,” Lu Yin prodded faintly.
Manager Ahke immediately agreed and assigned someone to settle Lu Yin’s rewards, even contacting the general manager in charge within the Frostwave Weave.
“Impossible, one student cannot recycle that quickly unless he’s a lockbreaker!” the voice said with certainty.
“I’ll ask,” Ahke answered.
“No need, it has to be fake. A lockbreaker wouldn’t bother with a tiny reward like this; let him go.”
“And what about the assignment progress?”
“Alright,” Ahke hung up.
Lu Yin had already received his reward by this time. While a majority of the materials weren’t worth too much, there were some special things that were sold by the gram. Everything weighed a few tons in total, adding up to a worth of nearly 1 billion credits. His share of the reward was a little over 300 million. A quick calculation told him that disassembling machines that were actually in good condition would jump his output a hundredfold. Iltoco paid extremely low prices for the scrap and had people like him disassemble it for further usage. The finished products would fetch tens of billions of credits; even if the money given away was shaved off, the profits would be well over 10 billion. The only issue was that disassemblers needed care, maintenance, regular repairs, and training. This money would be paid by Iltoco, and they would never be short on money. It was no wonder they had enough to buy a planet to use as a rubbish dump.
Lu Yin felt rather envious. This company was so rich, and it was just one company in the Outerverse that couldn’t compare to great powers like the Mavis Bank.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Translated By: Choco
Edited By: Theo
TLC'ed By: OMA