“Think of it what you want.” Chen Xiaolian responded with a noncommittal smile.
“If so, earlier, when you mention that the seeds of the World Tree are not what I had thought them to be…” Miao Yan looked at Chen Xiaolian with a serious expression. “Just what are they?”
“No matter how you look at it, this is no longer the same question.” Chen Xiaolian tutted twice. “Miss Miao Yan, if you want an answer this time, you will need to show some sincerity.”
“What kind of sincerity?” Miao Yan’s brows furrowed slightly.
“I’ll be frank. I need the seed that you possess.” Chen Xiaolian smiled as he spread both his hands out. “Set your price.”
“You mean to say, I need to sell it to you before you can tell me the truth about the seeds?” Miao Yan’s eyes narrowed slightly as she regarded Chen Xiaolian. “Why should I?”
“Firstly, because I need it. Secondly, you do not need it.” Chen Xiaolian shrugged. “Very reasonable, no?”
“How can I set a price before you tell me what the seeds are? Assume I sell my seed to you. If I am unable to accept the answer you give me, where do I go to complain?” Miao Yan regarded Chen Xiaolian with squinted eyes for a long time. Then, she suddenly smiled. “Chen Xiaolian, I never knew you have a talent for being unscrupulous.”
“Oh? Then, what do you want?” Chen Xiaolian revealed an ambiguous smile.
“Naturally, you’ll have to first tell me what the seeds are,” Miao Yan said as-a-matter-of-factly.
Chen Xiaolian responded with a big smile. “Are you not afraid… … that I would simply snatch them? Given my current level of strength, it is very easy to do so.”
“You!” Miao Yan’s eyes widened as she regarded Chen Xiaolian. “Chen Xiaolian, when did you become such a scoundrel?”
Miao Yan continued sitting there, not making a move. However, her entire body had gone tense as she entered a vigilant state.
“I’m just asking, I didn’t say I would do it. Look at how nervous you are.” Chen Xiaolian cast a playful look at Miao Yan. “All right, I was just messing with you. I will tell you what the seeds are.”
Miao Yan straightened herself and the look on her face grew serious. Her eyes were staring intently at Chen Xiaolian’s mouth.
“It is as you have said before, most of the rumours are not true. However, there are some truths mixed inside.” Chen Xiaolian fell silent for a moment, seemingly contemplating the issue, or perhaps he was considering how to explain it. “In essence, they really are the seeds of the World Tree. By bringing all seven together, you will be able to create a new world…”
“You tried to deceive me earlier!” Miao Yan glared at Chen Xiaolian as she interrupted him.
“Wait, I am not finished.” Chen Xiaolian waved his hand. “It would be more accurate to say that they ‘were’ the seeds of the World Tree.”
“You mean to say…” Miao Yan paused and her eyes abruptly grew wide. “They were… … used before?”
“Yes.” Chen Xiaolian extended his palm and placed it on the table.
There on his palm was a seed, glittering with a brilliant gold light.
“As expected, you have obtained one as well,” Miao Yan whispered, seemingly having expected this.
There was something of a blank look on her face.
“As I have said before, I have obtained a portion of the power of laws.” Chen Xiaolian lowered his head to look at the seed in his palm. “With my eyes, I can see the basic nature of many things. And inside this thing… … there is no power within it. It is just an empty shell.”
“In other words… … it is useless?” Miao Yan blinked. “Then, why do you want it?”
“Although it no longer contains power… … there are some information left within it.” Chen Xiaolian shook his head and said smilingly, “Even if the seed has grown into a tree, its roots need to be rooted underground.”
“Which means… … the seeds contain the coordinates to the world!” Miao Yan was a smart person and she immediately understood. “You want to go to the world? To do what?”
“Sell me your seed and I will tell you.” Chen Xiaolian closed his palm. When he opened it once more, the seed on his palm had disappeared. “Set your price.”
Slowly, Miao Yan closed her eyes. She did not say anything and was seemingly in a contemplative state.
As for Chen Xiaolian, he did not rush her. Instead, he simply waited quietly for her to make her decision.
After around five minutes, Miao Yan slowly opened her eyes.
However, she shook her head.
“I am sorry, Chen Xiaolian, but I cannot give it to you.” Miao Yan looked right into Chen Xiaolian’s eyes. “I had to expend a great deal of effort in order to get it. Giving it to you just like this, I cannot accept it. At the very least, I want to personally go and see the world for myself.”
“Oh?” Chen Xiaolian did not appear surprised to hear that. It was as though he had expected it. “So, what are you suggesting?”
“A partnership.” There was a very serious look on Miao Yan’s face. “This seed will still belong to me. However… … if you can find the remaining six seeds, I can let you use it. Then, I want to enter that world with you.”
“You won’t find what you want there,” Chen Xiaolian said coolly.
“There is nothing else I want. I just want to see what is in there.” Miao Yan turned her head sideways and revealed a faint smile. “I am a woman. Women are highly curious creatures.”
“I must also emphasize that coming with me will be very dangerous.” There was a very straightforward look on Chen Xiaolian’s face. “It is as I have said. I am like a massive ant right now. The Development Team might find me at any moment and come kill me. I even had to leave my guild due to this.”
“Whether or not it’s dangerous is my own business.” Miao Yan shrugged. “As long as I am willing to take the risk, there is no need for you to care, no?”
“That is true.” Chen Xiaolian nodded and broke into a smile. He then extended a hand towards Miao Yan. “In that case… … to a pleasant cooperation.”
“Now, you can tell me everything, right?” Miao Yan, too, extended her hand to shake Chen Xiaolian’s outstretched hand.
“Of course.” Chen Xiaolian nodded. “Get ready. What you will be hearing next, will be a long story.”
“Du Wei was the one who gave me my seed. He did it when I was exiting the Longevity Palace.
“And, according to what I saw from the wings, when the Development Team was fighting against the first GM, they said…
“The main controller has been modified! His authority and powers have been greatly upgraded! We… … we are no match for him!”
“Damn him! Does he think he can escape? Once we deal with the main controller, he will be next! Even if he escapes to his little world, it will be useless!”
Chen Xiaolian recounted what he experienced within Zero City. Then, he looked at Miao Yan. “What do you think?”
“It sounds like…” Miao Yan knitted her brows and was silent for a moment. “In that battle, the party opposing the Development Team, it wasn’t just the first GM.”
“Yes.” Chen Xiaolian spread his hand. “Additionally, that fellow escaped into a certain ‘little world’. I think that the Development Team were most likely referring to the world created using the seven seeds.”
“Moreover… … the Development Team also mentioned that the main controller was modified. If I am not mistaken, this main controller that they were talking about refers to the first GM.” Miao Yan contemplated the issue and said slowly, “If so, who modified the first GM and upgraded his authority and abilities?”
Chen Xiaolian abruptly clapped his hands. “That’s the key to all of this!”
“My guess is, a certain member of the Development Team turned traitor!”
“Development Team… … traitor?!” Miao Yan’s eyes grew wide.
“The reasoning behind this guess is simple. Since the first GM was created by the Development Team, there was no way they would have granted him the ability to fight against them. Since there was another person fighting alongside the first GM back then… … it is highly likely that he was the one who had modified the first GM.
“It is precisely due to his betrayal that the other members of the Development Team absolutely had to go after him.”
“This guess… … seems logical.” Miao Yan considered it for a while before slowly nodding her head.
“Shen is too strong, so much so that the combined might of all those monstrous fellows could not defeat him,” Chen Xiaolian said with a wry smile. “Thus, Du Wei believes that, only by finding the Development Team member who turned traitor will we have a chance.”
“You mean, have him reverse his modifications and take away the powers he gave to the first GM?” Miao Yan was quick to understand what Chen Xiaolian meant. “However, what makes you think he will help you?”
“I don’t know.” Chen Xiaolian spread his hands out helplessly. “In the end, all of this is just a guess based on the two sentences. We do not know if such a person actually exists. Or, if he exists, is he really a member of the Development Team? And is he the one who modified the first GM? Not to mention… … will I actually be able to find him? And after I find him, will he be willing to help me? However…”
Chen Xiaolian shook his head and continued. “At present, I have no other options. The only hope I have is this vague guess. If I don’t try to find him, what other options are there for me?”
“Yes. In times of desperation, try everything.” Miao Yan smiled. “However, before you do that, you have another problem in front of you. How will you find the remaining seeds of the World Tree?”