Chapter 44 “The disaster originating from the Ice Freezing Grass”
Seven Slope Mine was located in the northern part of the Seven Star Mountain. Aside from a small number of mining areas out in the open, the majority of them are located inside differing caves.
Though she spent a month inside the mountains before, this would be Ling Yue’s first venture into the northern part of the area.
Unlike the forested terrain of the southern side, the northern part of the Seven Star Mountain was barren, full of rocks, and desolate looking.
In the past, this part of the mountain would be full of miners and harvesters moving back and forth, rarely would it look so dead without any signs of life.
Following her big cousin Ye Saint, Ling Yue hurriedly headed over to the mountain until they reached the entrance hole to the mine. Not even inside yet, Ling Yue could already hear the raging yell of Ye Gu.
After nearly ten years of excavating, nearly one third of the Seven Slope Mine has been cleared out, hence the reason why the inside was so broad that it matched Autumn Maple Town in size.
Lit with the torches doused with pine oil, Ye Huang Yun (big uncle) and Ye Huang Cheng (hated uncle) was being scolded ruthlessly by Ye Gu.
“Disgraceful! How the hell were you two supervising? Why did all the good ores suddenly turn bad overnight?!” Ye Gu’s face was flushed red right now as the veins on his forehead popped like earthworms. Under his feet, piles of ores were scattered around.
Yuan iron ores are divided into two colors with the blackish grey being bad and silvery grey (forty percent) being good.
But the ores inside this Seven Slope Mine were scarlet red, and if looked closely, rust and mosses were all over the place.
Anyone who deals with iron ore would know, rust lines and moss growth are the results of poor preservation, allowing moisture to dampen the product and ruining it.
In order to keep the ores dry, the insides of the mine are always kept as dry as possible without letting any liquid inside.
And once an ore becomes rusted with moss growing on the surface, it becomes increasingly difficult to refine afterwards.
Worried over the Song family pulling any stunts during the exchange, Ye Gu had specifically entrusted these two men to oversee the handover.
Without slacking, the two brothers did their due diligence and barely had a chance for shut eyes as they inspected every part of the mine prior to the deal.
What’s more, the rust lines and mosses were still growing with no end in sight.
At this rate, the entire Seven Slope Mine will be ruined.
To make matters worse, in order to get the Seven Slope Mine as fast as possible, the Ye family had handed over their original mines to the Song family, hence leaving them with nothing to turn back to.
If the last time where Ye Saint nearly got scammed was but a little drizzle, then this time where the entire mine becomes infected with rust and moss would be akin to a wild beast, a tsunami, a scourge, a holy crisis like never before seen!
Some miners who got wind of the situation earlier had already left the Ye family for the Song family for work. Rumors flying outside was that the Ye family was done for this time.
“Father, we dare use our heads as guarantee that the ores inside the mine are all good when we took over.” Ye Huang Cheng was the main person in charge of the exchange. Looking at the heaps of useless ores on the floor, his heart felt like it was being carved with a knife.
“Grandfather, father, what’s wrong with these ores?” Ye Saint and several people of the family rushes inside to find dark clouds hovering over everyone’s head.
“Go-go-go, what’s a little boy doing at the mine for.” Ye Huang Yun was too busy worrying about the matter already, now that his son has arrived too with the other kids, how can he not be even more depressed.
As soon as Ling Yue entered the mine she could already feel a heavy dampness in the air.
Not wanting to invoke the fury of everyone at this moment, he minded her own business and made a round across the mine.
“Big uncle, why is there Ice Freezing Grasses in the mine?” The plants were well hidden in some obscure corners, but Ling Yue’s keen eyesight didn’t miss the white plants.
Recalling back to the meeting at the medicine shop where Song Guang Zhi and Master Lian ordered large amounts of this plant, Ling Yue’s mind went into overdrive to recall the uses for the Ice Freezing Grass.
“Ice Freezing Grass, what is that? Just some weed.” Ye Huang Yun’s mood wasn’t very good right now so how can he care about some weed?
“It’s not a weed, it’s a grass that condenses water vapor. By transplanting the stuff into the mine, it only needs one night to cause rust and moss growth.” Ling Yue’s head was aching now over her uncles. Though these men are very knowledgeable experts when it came to ores and mining, but they are oblivious to other things like herbs.
She had already kindly reminded them to investigate why the Song family would buy so much Ice Freezing Grasses, but they didn’t listen and now this happened.
“What! Ling Yue, is what you say true!” Ye Gu and Ye Huang Yun was unceasingly shocked by this.
As for Ye Huang Cheng, he can only make a scowling ugly face as usual.
“Then are these grasses all planted by the Song family? Damn those bastards, I will never let them off!” Out of anger, Ye Gu frustratingly makes a palm strike at the mountain wall, blowing a hole right out of the rocks.
“Grandfather, now is not the time to make the Song family accountable. The urgent matter is to first figure out how to remove the rust from the ores.” Ling Yue understands that what she says will be very difficult to do.
“What you say is easier said than done. Removing rust requires very high temperate using Yuan fire. In Da Xia, only a handful of large commerce associations and the royal alchemy department would have Yuan fire at their disposal. Also, even if we do manage to rid the ores of the rust, it will require large amounts of money, meaning our family can’t afford it even if we ruin ourselves.” Ye Huang Cheng couldn’t believe what he was hearing from this brat.
He’s never even heard of something like the Ice Freezing Grass, yet this little girl of thirteen can see through it. This greatly embarrassed him as an elder in the family.
With the cauldron in hand it’s not difficult for Ling Yue to remove the rusts, but that would mean she will need to reveal her secret. Besides, the Seven Slope Mine was far too big, it will be difficult for her to digest all the rust in this cave.
“It’s not just Yuan fire that can get rid the rust from the ores, lava fire will work too.” She clearly remembers from Mr. Red Mist’s codex that there was a case where the old alchemist tried something of similar nature.
“The temperature of lava fire is similar to some Yuan fire, but where are we going to find lava at this time?” Ye Gu nodded at first towards the proposal, but then ended up shaking his head at how unfeasible it was.
“As long as lava fire can remove the rust then the Ye family will be saved, grandfather, do you believe in me?” Ling Yue’s eye was bright as she looked Ye Gu in the eyes. As a little child, Ling Yue knows it’s very difficult for her words to convince everyone.
Somewhat doubtful, Ye Gu decided to go with the idea. Since there’s no other better options available, he might as well give it a try.
Seeing her grandfather giving her the go ahead, Ling Yue did not hesitate and lead Ye Gu towards the cliff cave where she found the Golden Snake Earthworm.
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