Star Odyssey

Chapter 1953: Being Frank

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Lu Yin's question caused a sudden change in Wan Gong's expression. "Alliance Leader Lu, there’s an odd relationship between Aurora Enterprises and the Cosmic Sect. I know this because I saw someone visit the microarray research center."

Lu Yin’s curiosity grew stronger.

Wan Gong solemnly stated, "Yuan Qiong."

Lu Yin's expression instantly changed. "The sect master of the Cosmic Sect? That Yuan Qiong?"

Wan Gong nodded. "I happened to see a picture of Yuan Qiong decades ago, so I’m absolutely certain that I recently saw the sect master of the Cosmic Sect. Only a few people in the research department saw him, but all of them were core members of the microarray technology research team that I’m a part of. I believe that if I was still allowed to communicate with the outside world, I would have never been allowed to see Yuan Qiong."

Lu Yin unconsciously started tapping a finger in the air as he sank deep into thought. He found it quite interesting that the sect master of the majestic Cosmic Sect would secretly visit Aurora Fortress and that his visit would even be to the core of the microarray research center.

"Has there been anything else?" Lu Yin asked.

Wan Gong replied, "Nothing else, though Director Zhi was very respectful towards Yuan Qiong when the sect master was here."

Lu Yin nodded and told Wan Gong to return to his quarters. The youth then left the microarray research department and returned to the quarters that he had been given, constantly hidden by the Second Nightking.

Shortly after Lu Yin left, Director Zhi arrived in the research center.

How could Wan Gong possibly try testing the microarray technology without Director Zhi being aware of it? Still, Director Zhi only knew that the experiment had been successful as there were traces of a finished product, but he was clueless as to just how successful the tests had been or what battle technique might have been released.

Upon seeing the signs of a successful test, Director Zhi became even more excited than Wan Gong. "What was the material that you used?"

Wan Gong replied, "I don't know. I actually wanted to rest, but I was unable to sleep, so I came here to run some tests. I grabbed a bit of materials and started running tests. I didn't expect one of them to be successful."

Director Zhi instantly ordered a full inventory of all of the materials in the research center. They absolutely had to determine exactly which substance had resulted in a successful test of microarray technology.

At that moment, a middle-aged man with a gloomy expression emerged from the void.

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Director Zhi and the others all offered the man a bow as soon as they saw him. "Master Xuan."

This man was indeed the powerhouse that Aurora Enterprises kept in the fortress who had a power level of over a million. He was also the Realm Array Master who was present.

Even Director Zhi, who oversaw the entire Aurora Fortress, had to be respectful to Master Xuan, and the director did not show the slightest bit of disrespect.

Master Xuan’s eyes swept across the microarray technology research center. "Sword technique."

Director Zhi glanced over at Wan Gong.

The engineer’s heart dropped.

Master Xuan stared at Wan Gong for a moment. "The test that was conducted used a sword technique. Have you ever studied swordsmanship?"

Wan Gong answered respectfully, "I’ve learned just a bit."

"Is that right? Show me." Master Xuan stared at Wan Gong. There was no anger in the powerhouse’s eyes, though there was absolute authority. Normal people could not refuse an order from an expert at this man’s level.

Wan Gong swallowed drily, and his star energy formed a sword that he slashed through the air.

Master Xuan's eyes turned cold. "Presumptuous! You actually lied to me."

Wan Gong was startled, and all strength left his legs. He was barely able to stay upright when facing the pressure of an expert with a power level of over a million.

Director Zhi stared at Wan Gong with cold eyes. "Wan Gong, I and Aurora Enterprises have treated you well. What have you done? Who was just here?"

After speaking, Director Zhi could not help but frown and glance over at Master Xuan. Everyone involved knew just how important the microarray technology research was, so Master Xuan would never be far from the research center. How could anyone gain access to this place without Master Xuan knowing about it?

Suddenly, Director Zhi thought of Lu Yin and the Second Nightking.

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At the same time, Master Xuan thought of the same thing, and his expression turned ugly as he exchanged glances with Director Zhi.

Out of everyone present on Aurora Fortress, only Lu Yin and the Second Nightking were capable of hiding their movements from Master Xuan to be able to enter the microarray research center.

At that moment, the air rippled in front of Director Zhi, and the Second Nightking escorted Lu Yin out. Lu Yin looked at Director Zhi. "Don't blame him. He wasn’t given any choice in the matter."

Lu Yin knew that he would not be able to hide the matter from Director Zhi as soon as they conducted a successful test of the microarray technology, but Lu Yin had not expected the Realm Array Master to appear so quickly. The powerhouse had instantly determined what sort of attack had been used for the test, and he had even seen through Wan Gong’s lies.

Director Zhi clenched his hands into fists and tried to suppress his anger. "Alliance Leader Lu, I openly welcomed you as a guest, and yet this is how you repay us?"

Master Xuan’s eyes narrowed as he looked at the Second Nightking. He felt a terrible pressure from this old man, but Master Xuan was still a Realm Array Master, and they were also in Aurora Fortress, which was his home base.

As for the Second Nightking, the man just looked at Master Xuan with cold eyes.

Lu Yin laughed. "Without me, your so-called microarray technology would still be nothing more than a joke! Wan Gong, tell your boss where the breakthrough that allowed you to finish researching the microarray technology came from!"

Director Zhi looked at Wan Gong, and the nervous engineer said in a trembling voice, "I honestly had no idea how to even proceed with the research, but Alliance Leader Lu provided me with a finished product that used microarray technology. That insight enabled me to find a breakthrough and successfully create a finished product. Actually, he also provided the material that resulted in a successful test."

Director Zhi was taken aback. "Both the material and the technology came from Alliance Leader Lu?"

Wan Gong glanced at Lu Yin before nodding to Director Zhi. "That’s right."

Director Zhi frowned and looked at Lu Yin with complicated emotions.

A smile spread across Lu Yin's face. "As I already said, Director Zhi, you should thank me. Without me, you would still be throwing endless amounts of money into the trash every year, and even if you had somehow managed to reach a breakthrough in the research, it would have been utterly useless without the material that I provided. I can promise you that you won’t be able to find a proper material even if you search through the entire Fifth Mainland. I’m the only one who has it."

Director Zhi let out a long breath. "Alliance Leader Lu, we need to talk."

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Aurora Fortress was more of a city than it was a fortress. It had a complete civilization, and there were many ordinary people who lived there. To these ordinary people, Aurora Fortress was a haven.

Director Zhi led Lu Yin to the largest waterfall in the northern region of Aurora Fortress. There was a gazebo beneath the waterfall with stone benches and tables around it. There were already bottles of wine and some refreshments prepared beforehand. Only Director Zhi and Lu Yin were present, as both Master Xuan and the Second Nightking had retreated.

Director Zhi poured a glass of wine for Lu Yin. "I don't enjoy drinking, but I heard that you do, Alliance Leader Lu, so I made a point to prepare this. Try it. It’s a wine that’s been produced right here in my Aurora Fortress."

Lu Yin raised a hand to stop Director Zhi from pouring any wine for himself. "Actually, I don't like drinking much either. I prefer tea over wine."

Director Zhi set his wine glass back down and pulled a teapot out from his cosmic ring. "Wine drinkers tend to be emotional while tea drinkers are more rational. Alliance Leader Lu, we didn't know anything about each other when we first met, but we have a good understanding of each other now."

Lu Yin turned to look at the nearby waterfall. "That’s true. By now, we know each other quite well. Aurora Enterprises invests ten percent of its annual profits into the microarray research center, and this never varies at all. This is an incredible sum, and in the Innerverse, it would be enough to establish a force on par with the Blaze Realm or the Ross Empire."

Director Zhi stared at Lu Yin. "If my guess is right, you pulled Wan Gong under your sway during your last visit."

Lu Yin nodded. He did not see the need to hide anything. "Not bad."

Director Zhi laughed. "Five years have passed, and yet we never noticed anything! It was no wonder why Wan Gong was able to make such a massive breakthrough in microarray research just a short while after you left us back then.

"I'm quite curious. I understand Wan Gong's character very well, so how did you manage to earn his trust so quickly, Alliance Leader Lu? He clearly didn't hesitate to sell out my Aurora Enterprises. Back then, you really could not compare to this company’s strength or influence at all."

Lu Yin reached out, took a teacup, and swirled the tea. "No comment."

Director Zhi sipped his tea. "Microarray technology is Aurora Enterprises’ greatest secret, and it can even be said that the technology is the entire reason why Aurora Enterprises even exists. We have constantly been researching microarray technology, so you can understand its importance to us, Alliance Leader Lu."

Lu Yin said nothing and merely listened.

"Over the years, my predecessors from Aurora Enterprises have all invested astronomical figures to research microarray technology, but we’ve only managed to succeed in my generation. Can you understand my feelings? My parents, grandparents, and so many other people's expectations are riding on this, and at this moment, we are only a single step away from success. Alliance Leader Lu, what do you think I should do?" Director Zhi grew increasingly excited as he spoke, and his eyes never left Lu Yin. "If you were in my shoes, would you want to share the success with others, Alliance Leader Lu?"

Lu Yin slammed his cup down onto the stone table. "Director Zhi, if not for me, not even your grandchildren would have managed to achieve any success in this research."

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"Then we’d keep going!" Director Zhi yelled. Veins protruded from the man’s forehead as he gnashed his teeth. "This is the very life of my Aurora Enterprises! No matter how long it takes us, no matter what price we must pay, this research must succeed!

"We can’t share our success with outsiders, and we won’t! Alliance Leader Lu, you are going too far!"

Lu Yin sighed as he looked at Director Zhi. "And here I thought that you were a sensible person."

Director Zhi’s eyes narrowed and started twitching. "I am, which is why I wanted to speak with you and why I brought you to this place, Alliance Leader Lu. No one else has ever visited this place, not even my own son. You are the first."

"What sort of negotiations do you want to conduct?" Lu Yin slowly asked.

He had never thought that it would be easy to take advantage of Aurora Enterprises. After all, the microarray technology was the greatest goal of the entire company.

Lu Yin had grown accustomed to controlling other people with their weaknesses. For example, the Sword Sect could be controlled with the Thirteen Swords, the Ku family with Extremes Must Be Reversed, and the Wen family with the method to layer the Literary Prison. At this moment, microarray technology was the weakness that could give him control of Aurora Enterprises.

However, Aurora Enterprises was a bit different when compared to the Ku or Wen families, as the company would never let go of their obsession with microarray technology. The Wen family had never even considered the possibility of layering their Literary Prison before Lu Yin had returned from the Perennial World, and while the Thirteen Swords were vital to the Sword Sect, they already possessed the complete technique.

The ones in a position most similar to Aurora Enterprises was the Ce family. They longed to obtain the complete secret technique that their ancestor had created, but even then, they had not been able to dedicate resources or manpower into researching the matter, as it was impossible to do so.

Aurora Enterprises was unique. They had researched microarray technology for far too long, and their obsession ran deep. In fact, their obsession could easily drive them mad.

Director Zhi’s breathing grew ragged. "In order for you to forget everything about microarray technology, I am willing to offer you 80 billion star essence, Alliance Leader Lu."

Lu Yin's eye twitched, and shock could be seen in the depths of his eyes. 80 billion? How much money did Aurora Enterprises have? Just their opening offer was already 80 billion star essence!

Lu Yin had to admit that this number made him hesitate. Who would be able to remain completely firm in front of such wealth? 80 billion star essence could literally crush even the Sword Sect’s mountain.

However, when compared to microarray technology, such money was insignificant as this development could usher in a new era. Lu Yin could not even imagine what this technology would facilitate in the future.

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