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Meng Chao was beginning to think that Lu Siya and Lin Chuan’s relationship was really strange.
“Okay,” he said, and took the Blood Jade Essence.
“By the way, do you know how crystals are formed?” Lu Siya held onto his hand and refused to let go. She stared at him while saying, “The scientists from Earth have performed a lot of research on the Other World’s crystal mines, and they created all sorts of strange theories. One of the most popular ones is that crystals are the corpses of powerful and intelligent lifeforms from the ancient civilization that once ruled over the Other World.
“When the terrain changed through the course of billions of years, incredibly high heat and intensely high pressure refined and squashed them, which is how they condensed and slowly turned into crystals.
“If we look at this from a certain angle, crystals are the fossils left behind by those from the ancient civilization. When we mine crystals, we’re digging out the corpses of those from the ancient civilization. And when we find the Red Radiance Jade mine, we’ll have located the blood vessel of a huge giant from ancient times. The Blood Jade Essence in your hands is the bone marrow or heart blood of someone from the ancient civilization.
“It’s no wonder then why the resonance from crystals can affect a human’s vitality magnetic field and even cause our spirit energy to deviate, which makes us see all sorts of illusions and hear things. It’s because we’ve disturbed the spirits who have been sleeping here for billions of years, and we’re hearing the murmurs from ancient times!”
Meng Chao suddenly felt that the Blood Jade Essence in his palm was quite the trouble.
Lu Siya continued by saying, “Of course, there isn’t a lot of proof supporting this hypothesis. But the coal, petroleum, and natural gas on Earth were indeed created by the corpses of ancient beings as the terrain on Earth changed over the course of a long time. Earth’s civilization was built on the foundation of the coal and petroleum industry, and they rely on extracting the corpses of the ancient beings to obtain the power to continue pushing forward.
“Do you understand what I’m saying? The road human civilization steps on boldly has always been built by billions of corpses. It happened on Earth, and it’s the same in the Other World. Regardless of whether we’re stepping on our own corpses, the enemies’ corpses, the corpses of the ancient beings from billions of years ago, or the corpses of the people who are bound to be sacrificed in the future, we have to do it to move forward. Without sacrifice, there is no civilization.
“That’s why I don’t want you to adopt Lin Chuan’s petty kindness. You have to realize that you must step on other people’s corpses to move forward. Human civilization has always done this, and if we want to reach the top and become matchless among billions of people, we must do this!
“Tell this to Lin Chuan. I will pay three times the blood money to all the people who die in this mission, and I will buy twice the Red Radiance Jades that they should get to their families. But if we run into danger next time, I will still take the lead, and I will not stop until I reach my goal!”
Lu Siya flung away Meng Chao’s hand and zipped up the tent from the inside.
Meng Chao returned to his and Lin Chuan’s tent and handed the Blood Jade Essence to him. Then, he gave a simple account of Lu Siya’s words to Lin Chuan. Of course, the words he used were not as extreme as hers.
Lin Chuan held the Blood Jade Essence in his hands and inserted a bit of spirit energy into it. In an instant, blood red mist spilled out through the gaps between his fingers and circulated around his arm.
As the red light nourished him, his wounds started healing. Soon, a faint layer of scabs formed up.
Lin Chuan exhaled in comfort. He drank a high-calorie nutritional fluid made from superbeast blood, and blood returned to his face.
Perhaps it was because Meng Chao’s expression had been a little strange when he shared Lu Siya’s words, Lin Chuan had been staring at him for a long time. Suddenly, he frowned and asked, “Are you bewitched by that woman?”
“Of course not. How could I possibly be bewitched by a woman?!” Meng Chao denied stoutly.
Then he thought about it, and found that his words were a little ambiguous, and he added. “That’s not right. Of course I might be bewitched by women, but I won’t be enchanted by women like Ms. Lu…
“Ah, that’s not right either. She’s indeed a very charming woman, but I might fall for her type, but I will absolutely not fall for her— Anyway, she asked me to join Sky Pillar Corporation, and I refused.”
“Why?” Lin Chuan asked. “Working together with Sky Pillar Corporation is a chance that many superhumans dream of having, but can’t get.”
“Can I tell you the truth?”
“Because I feel like you have a strange relationship with her. You might have gone through some cliche romance where you loved and hated each other, which got you deeply entangled with one another. Then, for some reason, you split up on bad terms, and since she can’t have you anymore, she thought about using me as your replacement.
“I’m a passionate youth with great ambitions, and for my ideals, I don’t mind working less for twenty years, but you’re involved in this, and you’re my neighbor, senior brother, and idol. I can’t destroy our relationship for one Ms. Lu. And women aren’t as important as the brotherly relationship between real men, you know?”
“…” Lin Chuan sucked in a deep breath and said with a complicated expression, “You’re overthinking things. Lu Siya and I are just friends. Besides, even if we really did have some other relationship, she would definitely not look for you to serve as my replacement.”
Lin Chuan touched his incredibly handsome face.
“Oh, got it. Then, Big Brother Lin, do you suggest that I join Sky Pillar Corporation and become closer to Ms. Lu so that we can work on some projects?”
“That’s your own path. No matter what you choose, I will support you. But I will give you this piece of advice: Your life is your own. You shouldn’t work too hard for anyone else,” Lin Chuan said.
“You fought against that undead creature to save Lu Siya just now, but it was far too dangerous. Even if it was to gain her favor so that you can realize your ambitions in Sky Pillar Corporation, there’s no need for you to be so eager.
“By the way, have I ever told you about my father? And did I tell you how a poor boy like myself managed to get into the same high school as a lady like Lu Siya and even became her best friend?”
Meng Chao was a little taken aback, and he said, “Ms. Lu said that your father saved her father’s life.”
“Is that what she said? Heh, that’s correct too, I suppose.” A complicated light shone in Lin Chuan’s eyes, and he said softly. “While my father was alive, he was a normal miner working in a mining company that belonged to Sky Pillar Corporation. He was not very educated and didn’t have a lot of skills. The only good thing about him was that he was a diligent worker and quite strong.
“To take care of me and my four siblings, he stayed in the mines all year long and worked in the dark, humid places with lots of radiation and monsters lurking everywhere. Since he was constantly ‘nourished’ by the crystals, his arms became deformed and swelled up. They were even thicker than his thighs, and his strength improved. Gradually, he became the best miner in his group.
“At that time, Lu Siya’s father had just come to the mining company under the corporation to manage the mining industry in the area my father worked.
“Even though he was part of the Lu family, the competition in the family is very fierce, and he had to have outstanding results to have the chance to take over the mining company and then usurp the person with the greatest power in Sky Pillar Corporation.
“Lu Siya’s father was very talented, and he was a first-class mine explorer. He also had a lot of amazing ideas that improved the mining efficiency after he used those ideas to smooth out and modify the exploration and mining processes at that time.
“My father was his best grassroots miner, and he recognized his worth. But if he wanted to stand out among the dozens of mines in the mining company, it was not enough for him to just modify the procedures and rely on my father’s hard work. Those were nothing.
“Lu Siya’s father relied on his sharp intuition and discovered a new mine near one of the mining spots he managed. It was a crystal mine that might contain a lot of spirit energy, but was stuck between two mining spots.
“The person in charge of the other mining spot was one of Lu Siya’s father’s competitors in the corporation, but no one knew just which mine this winding crystal mine would eventually connect to.
“To prevent any accidents from happening, Lu Siya’s father did not report his findings to the higher ups of the corporation. Instead, he formed a mine exploration team on his own. He wanted to draw a full map of the crystal mine before doing anything else. Among the team members he brought with him was my father.”
Meng Chao was engrossed in the story.
He remembered that Lin Chuan had once mentioned that his father died in an accident when a mine collapsed. It should be this mine, then.
Just as he expected, Lin Chuan soon continued, “At that time, my father had already worked for a few months in the mining spot without coming back home once. It was my birthday soon, and we had promised that we would have a family gathering. He had even asked his workmate to buy a teddy bear made on Earth from a secondhand market. He intended to gift it to me.
“He really treasured that teddy bear after he bought it, and he was reluctant to part with it. He even stuffed it into his chest pocket when he went to explore the mines. He treated it as his talisman… or as a token from the family he was missing.
“But that talisman wasn’t very useful. They ran into a superbeast deep underground, and while they were fighting fiercely against it, the crystals resonated with them, and spirit energy surged forward. The mine collapsed, and their exit was blocked.
“In the end, all the normal miners and the low-grade mine explorers died. Only Lu Siya’s father escaped, and he brought with him the present my father intended to give to me.
“Based on the words he said during the press conference after the accident, during the final moments, he and my father supported each other while they searched for a way out.
“But while my father had deformed arms, he was still a normal human. He couldn’t handle the pressing of the walls, the friction of the stones on his skin, the hunger, and the torture of suffocation. He didn’t manage to last until the end.
“Lu Siya’s father couldn’t save my father, so he could only fulfill his final wish and bring that teddy bear out. A very touching story, isn’t it?
“As the young master of the powerful Lu family, while he faced the danger of the mine collapsing, he still remembered the present a normal miner wanted to give to his son on his birthday. The news spread out, and Lu Siya’s father instantly won the favor of a lot of citizens. Even Sky Pillar Corporation’s reputation increased because of it.
“Even though the mine exploration team had been completely wiped out, they managed to complete their mission. They drew the layout of the mine, noted the crystals it had, their alignment, and the components of the crystals. They gained the right to mine it first.
“Because of this, Lu Siya’s father was able to raise up the ranks in the corporation. He reached the position of the general superintendent in the mining company, and it was a blessing in disguise for him.
“But my father never came back. The only thing left of him was a teddy bear covered in ash. It didn’t even have a single bit of fur left on it.”
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