The Card Apprentice Chapter 347
Translator:Nyoi-Bo StudioEditor:Nyoi-Bo Studio
Card sets were certainly a troublesome problem. Thankfully, however, Chen Mu had sufficient time to come up with a solution.
He was presently facing a problem that had to be resolved immediatelythe production rate of the extracts of the purple fluorescent ore. When he had seen the amount indicated on the list provided by Mobley, he had been struck dumb on the spot. The quantity Mobley needed was extremely largeso large that all the extracts of the purple fluorescent ore he could then produce was not enough to fulfill his demand alone.
Moreover, Chen Mu had no intention of abandoning the other two business partners. Whether it was the First-Rate Business Association or Qiao Fei, both were exceedingly important in his eyes. He was still somewhat on his guard against the Snowflake Card Artisan Team.
That party’s capabilities were far too strong compared to theirs. Past experience had taught him that if the capabilities of two collaborating sides had a huge difference, such collaboration was usually precarious. In fact, Chen Mu was more willing to trade with Qiao Fei and the First-Rate Business Association than the Snowflake Card Artisan Team.
However, once an organization like the Snowflake Card Artisan Team was keen on something, a mere refusal would be quite dangerous. Furthermore, the current moment was right in the period when Chen Mu and his men were at their weakest. In the event of a confrontation, they had no chance whatsoever.
Fortunately, no matter which way one looked at it, Chen Mu had reaped great benefits out of that deal. The price offered by Mobley wasn’t low, even being much higher than that of the First-Rate Business Association. Apart from that, the deal had guaranteed the safety of the Snow Silkworm Card Artisan Firm to some extent, which was just what Chen Mu needed most.
Meanwhile, the First-Rate Business Association, which had been provoked, promptly raised their purchase price for the extracts.
The quantity Mobley requires is seriously too large! Chen Mu was inwardly shocked. He couldn’t figure out what the Snowflake Card Artisan Team needed so much extract for.
The incredibly perplexed Chen Mu didn’t spend much time dwelling on that question, however. He had to bring up the production rate immediately. On one hand, he got Xi Ping to extensively recruit mining card artisans. The efficiency of those professionals was three to five times higher than that of ordinary card artisans. They had specialized cards and had undergone professional training. High-level mining card artisans even needed some amount of mining expertise and experience in addition to being good at detonations, analysis of the physical composition of the Earth’s surface, and so on.
At that point, they no longer needed to contain the news that they had purple fluorescent ore mines. With the help of the professionals, the production rate of the purple fluorescent ore would increase considerably.
Apart from that, he still had to make separators. However, according to the amount indicated on Mobley’s list, Chen Mu needed to increase the number of separators by at least another 100 to just about satisfy the demand, which was obviously an impracticality. Since the numbers couldn’t be made up, the solution had to be sought from other aspects. Chen Mu plunged into his own room, where a separator had been placed.
The separator had been pieced together by his own hands and, from the face of it, looked like an old, broken machine with plenty of patches. Chen Mu was staring at that patchwork separator, lost in thought and his whole mind turning upon what could be done to increase its production.
In his mind, the separator in front of him broke apart in an instant and turned into thousands of parts suspended in midair. Though the parts numbered in the thousands, there was no disorder in his mind, and each part was strangely clear. That was owing to his perceptual sensitivity training. The process of constructing those energy models frequently involved tens of thousands of even more complicated energy blocks. Thus, with ease and familiarity, he was able to dismember the complex machine using merely his imagination.
Chen Mu didn’t notice that point and was already deep in thought. The connection between parts, their function, the principle behind how the separator worked His brain was calculating and analyzing with rapid speed, losing track of time entirely.
Suddenly, he remembered the Spinulosa Disk, the first card appliance he had made. It was a plain-looking little card appliance that had helped him claim victory in the battle. His intention back then had simply been to not have those spare parts pile up like rubbish in the warehouse.
When he had first begun, he hadn’t found the right chain of thought, so he had made no progress with those spare parts. However, later on, it had been exactly due to the right chain of thought that he had successfully made the Spinulosa Disk.
I am a card master, and card making is what I am best at! This ought to be my breakthrough point!
He decided to proceed along that previous chain of thought. After a painstaking analysis of the separator’s working principle, he soon found the entry point.
The fundamental cause of the limitation on the separator was computation capability of its core parts. The composition of a piece of purple fluorescent ore was very complex, consisting of as much as dozens of substances. In order to extract the pure material from those, a strong computation capability was necessary.
In the earlier separators, that core function had been served by a part dismantled from an experiment analysis device. Evidently, its performance hadn’t been enough in pushing the separator to its fullest potential in efficiency.
Computation capability! When Chen Mu became aware of that point, he was even stunned for some seconds.
Heavens! This is literally like it’s been tailored for me! In the card knowledge Chen Mu had acquired, the core of it was the token card! And, the function of the token card was to compute! It had the strongest computation capability Chen Mu had ever seen.
After figuring it out, Chen Mu started researching madly. Though the token card was the core in his system of knowledge, he had only once made an unadulterated token card. That had been just shortly after acquiring the mysterious card, at the time of making the simple water world.
The making of a token card was extremely difficult. That was the conclusion from the making of the previous one.
It had been a long time since he had come across such an interesting and challenging topic. Moreover, that topic even had to do with the token card, which was the most important knowledge in the mysterious card! Recalling the time he had spent studying fervently to learn the token card, his fighting spirit swelled! As it involved roughly ten materials, the complexity of the computation was far greater than that of the token card Chen Mu had made for the simple water world.
Two days later, Chen Mu resurfaced from his room, and his appearance gave everyone a shock. His face was haggard, and his eyes were bloodshot and sunken. The moment he stepped out of the door, he grabbed Xi Ping, who happened to pass by, and asked, “Anything edible?”
Xi Ping was startled and hurriedly replied, “Yes, yes!” He swiftly turned around to order someone to send food over.
Half a minute later, food was brought to Chen Mu, who was concerned with nothing else but devouring it. During those two days, apart from resting for four hours, he had spent the rest of the time thinking through the crafting of the token card.
Xi Ping approached Chen Mu and asked with great care, “Boss, is everything all right?” He had rarely seen the boss so wretched. In his impression, the boss always had a cool and composed look.
“All right,” Chen Mu replied indistinctly through the rice in his mouth.
Xi Ping felt slightly reassured and opened his mouth to ask, “Did you run into some problems?”
Chen Mu just gave an “Mmmm” and continued devouring for dear life. Seeing how desperately hungry the boss was, Xi Ping felt a sudden pang of guilt. He wasn’t doing his job well enough!
Chen Mu polished off three person’s worth of food single-handedly. Having finished eating, he wiped his mouth and turned around to plunge back into his room. He shut the door tightly with a bang, leaving behind only Xi Ping with a bitter smile and worry on his face.
Chen Mu continued to be deep in thought, his mind working swiftly at a shocking speed. However, the difficulty of making the token card that time obviously far exceeded his expectations. The progress made so far was infinitesimal.
It wasn’t that he couldn’t make the token card, but that the token card made couldn’t satisfy him. He had calculated that if the token card was made according to his current plan, the performance of the separator could only be enhanced by five percent. That result couldn’t satisfy him.
After another two days, Chen Mu finally let out a long sigh. Though no progress had been made with the token card, he had cleared up one thingwith the knowledge of token cards he currently possessed, designing a scheme that would content him was impossible.
Lying face-up on the ground with arms outstretched and his body in the shape of a star, he stared blankly at the ceiling. On and on Chen Mu stared, until, exhausted by the past few days, he unconsciously fell asleep.
By the time he awoke, five hours had passed. He washed his face with some cold water, and his muddled brain was cleared substantially in an instant. Looking at his wretched self in the mirror above the basin, with water dripping from his wet hair, he suddenly broke into a laugh. He had been going too smoothly for some time, so much so that in his heart, he always subconsciously believed he had the ability to solve any problem.
I am, in fact, just an amateur card master who has had no systematic training. If I am to run into difficulties, that is only normal. My knowledge of token cards has only been acquired at the basic level. He couldn’t help but mock himself.
When he got to that point, his heart suddenly skipped a beat. He retrieved the mysterious card and slotted it into the apparatus on his wrist. The previous apparatus had exploded in the last battle and was useless. Even the big mudfish card inside had been damaged.
The one he was wearing presently was the battle-style apparatus, Heaven’s Wind II, bought for him by Xi Ping. That apparatus model was entirely white and had a simple and streamlined style. It had four slots for cards and no overtly fancy function. Its biggest advantage was that it was extremely stable, being able to adapt to all sorts of nasty environments. Even if it was used under water, it wouldn’t be affected. Additionally, its own defensive energy was highly remarkable, capable of withstanding attacks with damage values of less than 1,000. Naturally, its price wasn’t cheap, either.
Once more, he entered the mysterious card. It had been quite a long time since he had last done so. Bogged down by various matters, he was no longer that solitary youth who only needed to be concerned about his own studies and training.
The surrounding was an expanse of whiteness and densely foggy. He couldn’t even see the fingers on his own hand, but that scene was already quite familiar to Chen Mu. With no hesitation, he prompted his shuttle-shaped perceptual vortex. Countless perceptual threads reached out into the white fog around him.
The shapeless and intangible white fog seemed to have awoken from its dreams with a start, tossing and rolling. In innumerable fine streams, it was doing some special movement.
Chen Mu’s perception was quickly immersed in that stirring world, doing its best to capture the movement pattern of those fine streams. As compared to past times, he had made much progress. Most of the movements of the fine streams could not escape from the capture of his perception.
“Test result: perceptual sensitivity, 72 points.” The familiar, aged voice rang in Chen Mu’s ears once more. Chen Mu was inwardly startled. He remembered that when he had previously completed the five different energy models, he had received exactly 70 points; he wasn’t expecting to actually get to 72 that day.
Just as the voice disappeared, the white fog faded, and Chen Mu was standing in empty space. In front of him floated five cards of varying color.
The content of the first card was already familiar to Chen Mu. It was the method of making the folding Yanbo card, the awe-inspiring capabilities of which he had experienced first-hand.
His new goal was the second card: the intermediate token card theory course!
* * *
Everyone was really busy! Bogner wasn’t back yet, so Jiang Liang had to take up the mission of training the newly recruited card artisans. As for Xi Ping, he had even more to do: settlement of goods, clearing up the accounting, and so on. Even whatever was required at the base, he had to be responsible for its purchase.
Sue Lochiro was also up to her neck in work. The majority of those injured in the battle hadn’t recovered yet. Aside from that, she still needed to mentor some of the newly recruited medical card artisans.
At present, there was a total of 15 medical card artisans at the base, an astounding number for an organization of that scale. Those medical card artisans mostly had perception above the fifth level, but they were especially respectful toward Sue Lochiro, whose perception was only level four.
In their eyes, their superior was not only extremely beautiful but also had even more breathtaking medical expertise. Though her perception was only level four, in terms of medical expertise, none of the other medical card artisans measured up. Especially when they had observed the whole process in which Sue Lochiro had attended to the injured, every new medical card artisan had been overwhelmed with admiration.
The patients were those who had been terribly injured in the recent battle. Among them, many had been close to swallowing their last breath. With injuries of that sort, at any other hospital, the possibility of saving them was minimal. However, not only had Sue Lochiro cured them all, but apart from the two with extremely heavy injuries, none of the others suffered any damage to their perception. That was way too incredible!
Sue Lochiro hadn’t relied on solely one technique. Instead, she used a good deal of complementary techniques that would, in normal circumstances, be commonly overlooked. Yet, when those seemingly plain techniques were cleverly assembled together, they could produce amazing effects.
A medical card artisan whose perception was no higher than the fourth level could actually manage what the medical card artisans with fifth-level perception couldn’t. How could they not have a heartfelt willingness to serve her?
The medical card artisans sought Sue Lochiro’s guidance one after another, and she withheld nothing. Soon, her authority was well-established in that group.
If one came to think of it, the idlest was instead Ru Qiu. Sue Lochiro’s side didn’t need her assistance, and Chen Mu hadn’t given her any mission. With nothing to do, she seemed ill-fitted in the hectic and tense atmosphere of the whole base.
Suddenly, the apparatus on her wrist rang.
“Boss! Oh, ok. I will come there immediately.”
The boss is looking for me. What can it be? She was puzzled in her heart.