Chapter 1574: In Short, Let’s Rob!
Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations
Meng Chixin and Wu Suiyun looked at each other before Meng Chixin said, “Fellow Cultivator Wang, you once established ‘Ghost Character’, an assassination and intelligence organization. You are the one best at stealth, infiltration, and sneak-in among the twelve of us. Naturally, you should be the commander of the operation. In your opinion, what should we do next?”
“After three days of learning, I believe that you have gained a preliminary understanding about the universe beyond the Ancient Sages Sector,” Long Yangjun said confidently. “With your Cultivation in the Nascent Soul Stage and the Divinity Transformation Stage, it shouldn’t be difficult for you to pretend to be general local Cultivators, right?”
“It’s a piece of cake,” Han Baling, the sovereign of the prairies, said confidently. “We have learned everything about the customs and culture of this world. We have even grasped the common slang among the ordinary people. Nobody will notice anything wrong! Speaking of which, the slang of this world is quite strange. For example, unmarried men and women are often discriminated against in the place. Some of them are even cursed as ‘single dogs’, who often suffer ‘ten thousand tons of critical damage 1 ‘. How uncanny!”
“That’s nothing unusual,” Meng Chixin said casually. “Faced with the immense pressure from the Imperium of True Human Beings, the Star Glory Federation will certainly encourage reproduction. Only by giving birth to a larger population can they expect to raise more warriors! Such a policy to encourage reproduction is common in the history of the Ancient Sages Sector, too. For those who are overaged and unmarried, they cannot provide soldiers for the country. It is not unusual that they are discriminated as ‘single dogs’.”
“Thank you for your enlightenment, Master. I was too shortsighted. This is one of the federation’s policies to prepare for the war!” Han Baling slapped his head. “All in all, we are quite fluent with the urban slang here now. It is definitely not going to be a problem to blend into the local people!”
“That’s good!” Long Yangjun nodded in great satisfaction. “Learn, observe, and choose. We have basically achieved our first purpose. As for the fields that are more cutting-edge, we will have to learn them later after we infiltrate the federation.
“Next, we must choose appropriate identities to officially sneak into the federation!”
“Didn’t the tour guide ‘Screwhead’ say that he could contact the major sects in the federation so that we can directly enter the federation under ‘half legal’ identities?” Meng Chixin said. “Also, Fei Qi once told us about his links with the CIFA. They must have ways to sneak into the federation, too.”
Long Yangjun shook her head and said, “Neither of the two approaches are secure enough.
“Firstly, it is true that Screwhead can contact the major sects in the federation, which can give us half legal or even entirely legal identities. However, the main purpose of those sects is to attract the talents on ‘Firefly’. If we choose such an approach, we will inevitably be asked about the situation on Firefly and to show the techniques that only the Cultivators of the ‘rightful government of the Star Ocean Republic’ know. It is also possible that we will run into the crew members of Firefly who have already entered the federation through such an approach.
“We don’t know the first thing about the situation inside Firefly or any technique of the Cultivators from the center of the cosmos. Even if we can fool Screwhead for now, we can never pass all the following procedures to come.
“Secondly, it might be possible for us to sneak into the federation by way of the CIFA.
“However, I have always been suspicious about the CIFA. Such an insignificant, anti-federation organization has been active under the federation’s nose for such a long time without being annihilated. Is it possible that the federation is simply waiting for a big fish to bite the bait?
“Chances are that every secret branch of the CIFA is watched closely by a dozen special agents of the Secret Sword Bureau! If we go to the CIFA recklessly, it remains to be seen whether we can win their trust or not, but there is no doubt that the Secret Sword Bureau will set their eyes on us.
“Although it doesn’t matter to us even if we expose our identities or end on bad terms with them, it is still a better option to observe from the darkness if we have a choice.
“After all, even if the federation truly opens the gate for us and welcomes us warmly, what they demonstrate to us will probably be disguises. We will not be able to see everything as clearly as when we explore everything on our own.”
“Fellow Cultivator Wang, you do have a point.” Meng Chixin nodded. “It is true that we are more likely to find the truth about the federation if we investigate in secret. However, what identities should we use if neither of those two approaches are workable?
“With the Cultivation of the twelve of us, it is not difficult for us to change our appearances. However, in the federation, most information is connected to the Spiritual Nexus. It is practically impossible to go anywhere without an identity that can be verified online. We can’t hope to sneak around everywhere we go, right?”
“It is a problem that is not as tricky as it sounds,” Long Yangjun said. “As long as you have money, you can almost buy anything on the black market in Fish Dragon City, including the packages of absolutely legal identities, backgrounds, and plastic surgery. Many outcasts actually returned to the federation after staying here for decades because of nostalgia by switching to a new identity from the black market.”
Meng Chixin furrowed his eyebrows that were made of crystal threads. “As long as we have money?”
“Yes. That’s actually the biggest problem we are faced with. We are out of money,” Long Yangjun said rather helplessly. “We came to this place empty handed without any local currency. Fei Qi and his comrades were out on a hunting trip and therefore did not bring much money. Over the past few days, we have been purchasing jade chips, crystal processors, and other equipment crazily. The star coins and crystal cards that we looted from Fei Qi are running out.
“There will be an astronomical expense if we want to get twelve legal identities from the black market, preferably twelve related ones that can explain why the twelve of us are hanging around together!
“Also, after we do arrive in the federation, it will be best if we abide by the law and do not do anything outrageous in case we decide to cooperate with them later. So, we have to prepare a large sum of money for our daily expenses.
“After living in the Dragon Snake Space Zone for a couple of days, I’m afraid that you have all sensed that the spiritual energy here is much thinner than the spiritual energy in the Ancient Sages Sector. We have been consuming the crystals that we brought from the Ancient Sages Sector in our training every day. The rate of consumption is rather high!”
Everybody nodded at Long Yangjun’s words.
The Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators and the Divinity Transformation Stage Cultivators were all gluttons of crystals. Not just improvement, even maintaining their powerful level would require a tremendous quantity of crystals and spiritual energy.
The path of Cultivation was like rowing against the current. One would either be making progress or falling behind. Unless the Cultivator was hibernating, they could not skip training any day.
As it happened, the density of spiritual energy in the outside world was much lower than that in the Ancient Sages Sector. For them, it was like an ordinary person visiting a planet with an oxygen percentage of less than five percent. They felt extremely uncomfortable.
To maintain their level in such a ‘low-oxygen’ environment, they had to resort to the crystals that they had brought from the Ancient Sages Sector.
However, the capacity of their Cosmos Rings was not unlimited. At their current rate of consumption, all the crystals would soon be drained. After that, they would have to purchase the crystals locally, which would require another huge sum of money.
In the Ancient Sages Sector, those unparalleled experts were supported by their sects, tribes, and country, and the spiritual energy in their hometown was much denser. They had never been worried about such things before. However, now that they had gone to a modern Cultivation civilization where they were complete strangers, training resources—or in other words, ‘money’—became the greatest problem.
“We have to find ways to make money.” Long Yangjun counted on her fingers. “Firstly, we must buy twelve legal identities from the black market. Secondly, we must prepare funds for our training and activities in the federation. Thirdly, we have to prepare two crystal suits for everyone, which means twenty-four in total, or twenty-six if we are counting Heiye Lan. This is another fortune.”
Ba Xiaoyu the Beggar was confused. “Why do we have to prepare so many crystal suits? Don’t we have the Colossi?”
“It’s true that we have the Colossi. However, such ‘ultimate magical equipment’ is too powerful and eye-catching,” Long Yangjun explained. “If we make use of them, there will be absolutely no room for negotiation and no retreat for us!
“Also, it is highly inconvenient to maintain the Colossi. I’m afraid that we will not be able to use them again after a great battle.
“Therefore, the Colossi can only be used as our final ‘trump cards’. For daily use, we will have to count on the crystal suits.
“The crystal suits that we are using right now are all loot from the Imperium that we got through Heiye Lan, with the unmistakable style of the Immortal Cultivators. I don’t think it is appropriate to use them within the territory of the federation.
“Also, while we have acquired a few crystal suits from Fei Qi, they are mostly garbage with lousy performances. Such equipment is not good enough to aid us when we are in crisis.
“This is what I’m thinking. If we do sneak into the federation, unless it is absolutely necessary, we must not reveal our Cultivation of the Nascent Soul Stage and the Divinity Transformation Stage. In the seven Sectors of the federation, there are only less than a thousand Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators in total. If twelve unknown Cultivators suddenly popped up out of nowhere, the Secret Sword Bureau will certainly come running!
“We can only be active with the Cultivation of the Core Formation Stage, which means we will need twelve middle- and high-level crystal suits that befit Cultivators in the Core Formation Stage from the federation. Naturally, if possible, we also need twelve high-level crystal suits that can bring out the best combat ability of the Nascent Soul Stage and the Divinity Transformation Stage in case of emergencies.
“Those crystal suits do not have to be brand-new. We can ask Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture to purchase some components and add to the crystal suits of the Imperium as disguises.
“However, both purchasing new crystal suits and modifying the old ones will cost a huge fortune.
“The three expenses combined are certainly astronomical. Where do you propose we get the money?”
Long Yangjun looked at everybody.
‘Heaven Battering King’ Qi Changsheng grinned. “Is there a problem? Let’s just rob!”
Long Yangjun clapped her hands. “Bullseye, Fellow Cultivator Qi. To get such a large sum of money, we can either gamble or rob. Or, we can both gamble and rob!
“My plan is for us to work in three different directions.
“Gambling is very popular in Fish Dragon City. Wealthy people fill the casinos and the arenas. Let’s ask ‘Sword Maniac’ Yan Liren to go to one of the arenas and win a few matches. That way, we can figure out the details about the local magnates.
“The eleven of us will be divided into two teams and work simultaneously.
“As for Fellow Cultivator Spiritual Vulture, you will go to the biggest magical equipment market and crystal suit center to prepare equipment we may need after we enter the federation. Any problems?”