Chapter 251: Two-stars

Generally, the hardest part about lockbreaking was seeing through all the various energies that composed a sourcebox. But this was a trivial task for Lu Yin; due to his Cosmic Art and the Giant Emperor’s third eye, he could see the energy composition of sourceboxes even more clearly than Charon. Although Charon had comprehended a domain, it was still impossible for him to see the energies as clearly as Lu Yin. After one perceived the energies that made up the sourcebox, the next step was to unravel them all.

Lu Yin lifted his hand, causing his star energy to enter the sourcebox. At that moment, the previously balanced energies within the sourcebox underwent a huge transformation. It was as if a huge rock had been thrown into a calm lake, causing huge waves to disturb the formerly calm surface.

Lu Yin nervously stared at the sourcebox and did not dare to relax in the slightest. There were innumerable videos in the Sourcebox Catalog showing Lockbreakers being killed by supposedly harmless sourceboxes. This was because the energy that made up a sourcebox was maintained in a delicate equilibrium, and when it was disrupted, even a harmless sourcebox could very well explode as the deadliest weapon.

Not too far away from Lu Yin, the Trialmaster nodded, not the least bit surprised at what the Cosmic Art was capable of. It was a technique that was incredibly suited to lockbreaking. Even though Lu Yin hadn’t comprehended a domain yet, the speed and accuracy with which he could unlock sourceboxes was far better than most Lockbreakers who had comprehended domains. Compared to other Lockbreakers, Lu Yin basically had a cheat in his Cosmic Art that was much better than any lockbreaking tool. The Cosmic Art paired with a lockbreaking tool… This kid only lacks experience. Once Lu Yin filled in for his inexperience, he would definitely become a five-star Discerning Elementary Lockbreaker. With more training, he might even be able to challenge intermediate sourceboxes.

The process of lockbreaking was extremely complicated, but it went smoothly this time. The sourcebox slowly grew smaller as the complex energies on its surface steadily dissipated.

End Of The Road looked on and grew very excited as he stared intently at the screen. His palms were incredibly sweaty right now.

After ten hours, Lu Yin let out a large, pent up breath; he was on the verge of succeeding. During his first unlocking attempt, it had taken him twenty seven hours to succeed, and that experience had been carved into his memory. Right now, he was working on a more complex sourcebox, but he was much quicker than before. This was primarily due to the fact that his Cosmic Art had been cultivated to nine stars, but it was also due to the fact that he had acquired a lockbreaking tool. Finally, the last reason for his improvement was that he had also gained Charon’s lockbreaking memories and experience from Possession, and that included the time that Charon had unlocked the Unveiled Sword. These three aspects combined with Lu Yin’s general increase in strength caused his lockbreaking to be nearly twice as efficient as before. He believed that, even if Charon could unlock this sourcebox, he might not be any quicker than him.

Of course, a person’s lockbreaking speed was not the only way to judge their abilities. Still, it was a rather direct way of making comparisons. At the very least, people like End of The Road could only judge a Lockbreaker’s abilities by their speed.

It seemed that there was only a little bit of work left before the sourcebox would be opened and the contents within revealed. End Of The Road was incredibly excited and didn’t dare to even breathe too loudly in case he bothered Lu Yin.

After about ten more minutes, with a wave of Lu Yin’s hand, the surface of the sourcebox that was about as long as a person’s arm seemed to be blown away by the wind. In front of him, there was a green plant that was giving off green rays of light. Some kind of strange gas lingered above the plant along with a strong fragrance.

“So it’s a scent shrub...”  the Trialmaster said as he stared at the plant.

Lu Yin curiously asked, “A scent shrub?”

“It’s a medicinal plant that becomes more valuable the longer it lives. This one is probably over ten thousand years old, so it’s sure to fetch a good price if it’s sold,”  the Trialmaster said.

Lu Yin was confused. “If it’s not that valuable, then why was it sealed?”

The Trialmaster answered, “That’s because of natural changes in the environment. There aren’t any specific requirements for an item to be sealed in the universe’s dust, but generally, the more worthless an item, the easier it is for that item to decay. However, that doesn’t always happen. There are no two sourceboxes in this universe that are exactly the same. Since no two sourceboxes are the same, it means that anything could happen. Who knows, a powerful family might have a sourcebox in their collection that holds nothing more than a rock. It’s actually normal for something mundane to turn up.”

Lu Yin came to a realization and then burst into laughter. “It seems that this person is pretty lucky to be able to get this then.” After saying that, he picked up the scent shrub and took it to the space station.

End Of The Road had been waiting anxiously, so when Lu Yin arrived, he jogged over as quickly as he could before taking the scent shrub with sincere gratitude. He then ordered his men to carefully store it.

Lu Yin repeated what the Trialmaster had told him, and End Of The Road didn’t seem disappointed at all. “A scent shrub that’s been around for over ten thousand years is sure to sell for a good price. Shamrock Enterprises is always searching for rare medicinal plants that have existed for a long time. This is enough. It’s definitely enough.” After saying that, he took out a Mavis Bank card and handed it to Lu Yin as payment; it held fifty thousand star crystals.

Not long after, End Of The Road left Astral-10.

Lu Yin took the bank card and glanced at his profile in the lockbreaker network. He had already posted the video of him unlocking that sourcebox onto his catalogue. All that was left now was to wait for his work to be verified. Oh? Lu Yin suddenly saw some numbers under his first video: 18,500. What was that?

He investigated it further and was delighted to find that it was money; it represented 18,500 star crystals. It was the amount that he had earned from people viewing his first video. Each view cost 500 star crystals, which meant that thirty seven people had purchased the right to view it. Wait, perhaps that wasn’t exactly the case. It had been purchased thirty seven times, but it might not have necessarily been thirty seven separate people. If a person wanted to view the same video multiple times, they would have to buy it each time.

Lu Yin grew very excited. This was actually a great way to earn money! How many people were there in the universe? There were far too many to count. Those who could access the Lockbreaker’s network were not ordinary people. Each one was very rich, especially other Lockbreakers. It was very normal for a Lockbreaker to watch someone else’s video. Just having people purchase the right to view it thirty seven times had earned him nearly 20,000 star crystals. What if 370, 3,700, or even 37,000 people wanted to view his videos? He couldn’t even imagine it; it was too much money for him to calculate.

Lu Yin had gone through planetary trials and multiple near-death situations. Even after going through all those trials and tribulations, he was still shocked by this path to wealth. After a moment, he sighed and calmed down. It had been about half a year since he’d successfully completed his first lockbreaking attempt, and in the past half a year, the video had only been viewed thirty seven times. If he looked at the amount of time that had passed, this process was far too slow to gain any significant wealth.

His heart sank.

Within the universe, there were very few Lockbreakers. However, there were still hundreds of thousands of them registered in the network. Although this number might be relatively low compared to other organizations, there were still at least a hundred thousand Lockbreakers with achievements to their names. Why had his video attracted any attention at all? It was very difficult for one Lockbreaker to stand out amongst a hundred thousand. Why had these people all viewed his video? With this money, they could have chosen an Intermediate or even an Advanced Lockbreaker’s video. Those people had also started out from the very bottom, so their videos should theoretically be the most valuable.

Things took time. After half a year, his video had only been purchased thirty seven times, which was just too few. This meant that nobody knew about him. What he needed to do was to make himself known. If he became somewhat famous, then more people would be willing to spend money and buy the rights to view his videos.

“Take it slow,” Lu Yin muttered to himself. He scanned the list of available missions that were nearby. The next one that he decided to take on was a sourcebox owned by someone with the handle “Lost.” The sourcebox had been verified to be at the two-star Discerning Elementary grade, so it was suitable for him to attempt.

Lu Yin accepted the mission, but just as he was about to ask the person to come to Astral-10, the mission was cancelled. Lu Yin froze for a second and was rather annoyed that this person did not trust him, but he couldn’t do anything about it. A mission went both ways, and the requestor could choose another Lockbreaker if he so desired. End Of The Road had been in too much of a hurry and his offered payment wasn’t very high, which was why he had agreed to let Lu Yin make the lockbreaking attempt. To him, the matter was like a gamble. Many people were willing to pay a hefty premium to have Lockbreakers with achievements unlock their sourcebox.

Lu Yin accepted three missions, but he was rejected from all of them. He was merely a one-star Discerning Elementary Lockbreaker, and it made more sense for him to go after one-star Discerning Elementary grade sourceboxes. When he tried to accept a mission with a two-star grade sourcebox, most requestors would not trust him. Besides, he only had one video which meant that he had only unlocked a single sourcebox so far. He simply wasn’t trustworthy enough.

Two hours later, the second video that Lu Yin had uploaded was verified. He did not hesitate to upload this second video of him unlocking a sourcebox and immediately made it available at the lowest price.

All of a sudden, Lu Yin remembered something vital. Had he exposed his Cosmic Art in the video? He hastily reviewed the video and then heaved a sigh of relief; thankfully, he hadn’t. The angle in the video from his gadget had not captured his body. All that could be seen was a pair of hands unlocking the sourcebox, and not much of the surroundings could be made out. The only recognizable things in the video were his hands and the sourcebox. 

Lu Yin was rather disappointed that his achievements weren’t enough for him to reach two-stars. It wasn’t easy for a Lockbreaker to increase their rank unless they unlocked a very difficult sourcebox. Lu Yin thus had no choice but to take things slow. Even if he managed to unlock two two-star Discerning Elementary grade sourceboxes, it would not be enough. He still needed to unlock at least one or two more of these before he even had a chance of becoming a two-star Discerning Elementary Lockbreaker.

The only other possibility of advancing was if he straight up unlocked a three, four, five-star, or even an intermediate-grade sourcebox. That would be a huge achievement, and it was what Charon had done. Charon had unlocked the Unveiled Sword and had become a five-star Discerning Elementary Lockbreaker right away.

Now that he had been verified as being able to unlock a two-star Discerning Elementary grade sourcebox, Lu Yin quickly found a second mission. It was also a two-star Discerning Elementary grade sourcebox and the reward was 70,000-star crystals—even more than what End Of The Road had offered.

For the next ten days, Lu Yin spent his days unlocking sourceboxes. After every unlocking session, he also needed to rest for a day. Over ten days, he unlocked four sourceboxes. Of those four, his slowest lockbreaking session went on for nineteen hours, and his shortest only took him seven hours. Two of the sourceboxes had been empty while the other two had actually contained something. One was a small bottle that appeared to be ancient, but he had no idea what was inside of it. The other one was a tattered book that should contain a technique within it. However, for the sake of professionalism, he did not look inside.

The reward for successfully unlocking those four sourceboxes raised his achievements to two-stars and also earned him 400,000 star crystals. On the Lockbreaker’s network, there was now an additional star attached to Seven’s name; he’d officially become a two-star Discerning Elementary Lockbreaker.

The process of lockbreaking was very complicated and painful. After Lu Yin completed his fourth lockbreaking attempt, he slept for three full days.

“Lockbreaking is very difficult. Even when there’s no danger, your body still might not be able to handle it. Do you want to keep going?” the Trialmaster asked as he looked at Lu Yin.

Lu Yin shook his head. “No, my head hurts.”

The Trialmaster burst out laughing. “That’s a smart answer. If you keep going, then you’ll either go crazy or faint. Did you think that lockbreaking was an easy thing to do? Did you think that you’d be able to unlock as many sourceboxes as you wanted? If that were the case, then Lockbreakers would have become invincible long ago. The unlocking process wears down on a Lockbreaker’s mind. It’s the same with those scholars—nobody can continue with such a draining task for a long period of time.”

Lu Yin bowed towards the mentor. “Thank you, sir.”

“You’re not too bad. Two, three, or even four-star Discerning Elementary grade sourceboxes won’t be a threat to you. If you come across the opportunity, then you can try a four-star sourcebox. Don’t waste your time, but also don’t be in too much of a rush. A five-star sourcebox can still pose a threat to you,” the Trialmaster warned.

Lu Yin acknowledged the warning.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Ying

Edited By: Neshi/Nyxnox

TLC'ed By: OMA