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Chapter 764 – Ancient Jade Bracelet
As Li Yifeng saw Zhou Kun stick to him like melted candy, he thought little of it. Shopping here all depended on one’s own ability to begin with. Daring to buy or not, daring to match the price or not, everything would depend on one’s eyes and courage.
When Li Yifeng first became obsessed with wood spirit jade carvings, he had bought fakes and he had bought counterfeits.
In the world of wood spirit jade carvings, fakes and counterfeits were two different things.
A fake was something new disguised as something old, made with wood spirit jade.
As for counterfeits, those were not made from wood spirit jade, but rather wood-attribute spirit essence stones. A wood-attribute martial artist at the Revolving Core realm or even the Life Destruction realm would use their inner energy to transform the spirit essence stone and then integrate a small amount of wood spirit jade powder within.
Counterfeit wood spirit jade formed by an expert was difficult to distinguish from the real deal. Let alone a novice who was just getting started, even masters who had been in the business for years would easily be tricked if they were inattentive for just a second.
In the traditions of Jade Row, new fakes disguised as old treasures was part of the business. However, selling counterfeit goods as the real thing was a matter of ruining their reputation and they would have to pay the customer 10 times the price in compensation.
This was because what they sold wouldn’t be jade. If they sold counterfeit goods then they couldn’t be called Jade Row.
Li Yifeng had paid a great amount of money in order to touch upon the gate of identifying wood spirit jade. From the start when all he made was losses, to the present where it was small losses, to the future where he would make small profits, and then beyond that to great profits, that was what he planned.
Of course, Li Yifeng played this game not for money but because he was purely interested in it. It was no different from a mortal that loved gold and gems. Within the four Divine Kingdoms, there were far too many martial artists that loved wood spirit jade. In particular, female martial artists. If they had a set of real wood spirit jade jewelry then not only could it help nourish their soul, but they could also illuminate their own beauty and charms. Wood spirit jade was a high class luxury good desired by all noble daughters of every Divine Kingdom.
“You must all be thirsty after looking for such a long time. First, let’s drink some tea.” The Knifescar fellow clapped his hands together. Suddenly two slender and beautiful young girls came sashaying out, their bodies covered in only a thin layer of fine gauze as they carried a set of teapots, cups, and tea stoves. The two young girls placed down the tea set and then threw blatant flirtatious glanced at Li Yifeng and Zhou Kun. From underneath that faint light veil that covered their bodies, one could clearly make out two dark red spots on their chests.
Zhou Kun laughed out loud and groped the chests of the two young girls. As for Li Yifeng, underneath Qing’er’s contemptuous gaze, he managed to stay well-mannered and polite.
Qing’er spat out in irritation as the two young girls stepped back. The two young girls were martial artists to begin with and their hearing was very keen. Although they heard Qing’er’s words, they didn’t mind it at all. Instead, they giggled and looked back at Qing’er, a great sense of sly provocation clouding their faces.
This was the style and vigor of the desert. The men were rugged and the girls were openly s.e.xual. Even the diet was greatly different. For instance, this pot of tea. Although it was called tea, the truth was that it seemed more like soup. There was butter and shredded vicious beast meat added in, as well as a number of seasonings.
Lin Ming took a single sip and nearly gagged; the smell of meat was unbearable. The once delicate fragrance of the tea was completely overpowered and mixed in with the meat, making it impossible to taste. Lin Ming couldn’t bear to take a second sip. Truly, this was quite difficult.
Li Yifeng glanced straight at him and laughed. He was obviously aware of this tea’s taste and hadn’t made a single move towards it.
As for Zhou Kun, he drank the tea with great gusto. Lin Ming was speechless; this fellow really had peculiar tastes.
“Well, let’s start then.” As the Knifescar fellow saw Zhou Kun drink his cup of tea, he clapped once more. The two beautiful serving girls returned, causing Qing’er to adopt a ferocious expression.
The two young girls each held a tray in their hands that was covered with red silk.
The first tray was unveiled, revealing a green smoking pipe. There were martial artists that liked to smoke, although what they smoked wasn’t ordinary tobacco, but rather a variety of shredded spiritual plants with the characteristics of tobacco. There were some high quality mixes that cost one or two spirit essence stones for each use.
To smoke such shredded spiritual tobacco naturally required a good smoking pipe. A wood spirit jade smoking pipe was originally filled with wood-attribute energy itself. It could fuse with the special tobacco, making it even more fragrant, and even providing an effect of nourishing the soul.
“This is a wood spirit jade smoking pipe made 5000 years ago. The craftsmanship is superb, and the price is 1300 spirit essence stones. I won’t speak further about it. Guests, please take a look for yourselves.”
The Knifescar fellow held the wood spirit jade smoking pipe up.
Lin Ming looked at it. The first thing he investigated was not the year that smoking pipe was carved in, but rather the material it was made from.
From the texture of the wood spirit jade to the fluctuations of wood-attribute energy, he slowly discerned all of this and more.
‘13,000-14,000 ninth-grade wood spirit jade; the quality isn’t too bad either.’
Wood spirit jade had different measurements for its value. One of these was age. The longer that wood spirit jade existed, the more valuable it became. Wood spirit jade also had a grade; a high grade was even more important than the age of the wood spirit jade.
For example, wood spirit jade formed by a buried Demon Heart Flower would be several grades lower than wood spirit jade formed from a 10,000 Year Nirvana Dragon Root. But, the wood spirit jade formed from a 10,000 Year Nirvana Dragon Root would be several grades lower than a wood spirit jade formed from a profound gold divine fruit.
The grade of the spiritual plant that was the origin of the wood spirit jade was the most important factor in its quality.
After looking at the wood spirit jade’s quality, Lin Ming began to judge the year the smoking pipe was carved in. The luster was a bit dim, and there were some faint sparks of color like bits of fluorite were mixed in. This was a special gloss formed from trace metal impurities on the surface of the wood spirit jade over several thousand years of time.
Based on this alone, as well as pure energy of the wood spirit jade, Lin Ming determined that this smoking pipe should be around 4000-5000 years old.
It seemed as if this Knifescar fellow wasn’t lying after all.
After a quarter hour, Li Yifeng and Zhou Kun both stopped their appraisal.
“I want that smoking pipe.” Zhou Kun said.
Li Yifeng hesitated for a moment, not speaking. If he spoke then the price would increase.
Although he was 70-80% sure that this smoking pipe was real, if he put it up at an auction house, the most he could receive was around 1700-1800 spirit essence stones. After deducting the auction fees, he would have less than 1500 left over. For a mere 300 spirit essence stones he would also have to take a significant risk. There really wasn’t much worth in doing this, especially since he didn’t smoke so he had no interest in the smoking pipe itself.
The Knifescar fellow looked at Li Yifeng with hope in his eyes. As he saw that Li Yifeng had no intention of bidding, he was unavoidably disappointed. Still, he had bought this smoking pipe for 800 spirit essence stones. Making over a 60% profit in a single exchange was quite good.
In White Dragon Jade Row, all transactions were completed on the spot. Zhou Kun immediately put out 1300 spirit essence stones and bought the smoking pipe.
“Hehe, the first item was just an appetizer. This second item is the real deal! I guarantee that both of you will love it!” The Knifescar fellow said with relish. Then, he pulled the silk cover off of the other young girl’s tray, revealing a pair of bright crimson blood jade bracelets.
“This is…” Li Yifeng’s eyes lit up. “Blood spirit jade?”
Zhou Kun was also delighted. Blood spirit jade was an extremely rare form of wood spirit jade.
Oftentimes, a top heavenly material would have a vicious beast or Saint Beast protecting it. These beasts would be drawn in by the rich origin energy released by the spiritual plant, and would remain by its side, protecting it until it matured and ripened to the point where it could eat it up.
But sometimes there were accidents. For instance, if the spiritual plant’s origin energy was too strong, then after the vicious beast that protected it swallowed it down they wouldn’t be able to withstand the surge of origin energy. Their meridians would tear and their organs would cook until they finally exploded in a bloody death.
Afterwards, this vicious beast would be buried underground together with the spiritual plant. Generally speaking, this sort of vicious beast was normally at a very high level. The energy and blood essence of the vicious beast would slowly and subtly seep into the wood spirit jade, forming the rare blood spirit jade.
This sort of peculiar wood spirit jade was 10 times or even 20 times more valuable than regular wood spirit jade.
If this pair of jade bracelets was really made of blood spirit jade and also had a history of several thousand years behind it, the price would be inestimable.
Li Yifeng and Zhou Kun each took a bracelet and rapidly identified its characteristics. Both of them were completely absorbed in their task. For a wood spirit jade collector, the rarer an item was, the easier their interest would be aroused.
Even Qing’er, who didn’t care much more wood spirit jade to begin with, was filled with interest towards these two blood spirit jade bracelets.
Lin Ming silently watched from the side, allowing his perception to touch over the bracelets for a long time. There was a beautiful ruddy color, it was filled with energy, and the quality of the jade itself was extremely high. From all aspects it seemed to be real blood spirit jade. However, Lin Ming actually felt a faint death energy coming from the jade.
Although blood spirit jade was formed from dead things, after tens of thousands of years that death energy should have faded away by now. Unless…
Lin Ming thought for a moment and then said to Li Yifeng, “Let me have a look.”
Normally speaking, in order to fully appraise something, one had to use all their senses. They had to look, feel, touch, ask, listen, and smell.
Looking was to use the eyes, feeling was to use one’s perception, touching was to touch with one’s hands, asking was to determine whether or not what the owner said was true, listening was to hear the sounds it made, and smelling was to smell the faint scent it emitted.
True wood spirit jade had an extremely, extremely faint wooden smell. A grandmaster could even use this sort of fragrance to approximate the age.
It was impossible for Lin Ming to identify whether or not this jade bracelet was real or fake with just looking and feeling it.
Li Yifeng carefully passed the blood spirit jade bracelet to Lin Ming. In truth, having one’s valuable reverie time interrupted by someone wasn’t pleasant at all. However, Li Yifeng didn’t comment on this. Since it was Lin Ming it was alright, even if he knew that Lin Ming didn’t know anything about wood spirit jade carvings and just wanted to join in on the fun.
Lin Ming touched the blood spirit jade bracelet and smelled it. He already made an approximate judgement. The jade bracelet wasn’t smooth. There was an extremely delicate sandy texture to it; all of this was in line with true blood spirit jade. However, when he smelled it, he had sensed an incomparably faint fragrance of blood. This nearly imperceptible smell was concealed by the maker using an ingenious method. If one wasn’t prepared in advance then it would have been impossible to discern it.
This was not blood spirit jade but corpse jade. The so-called corpse jade was when wood spirit jade was used as a funeral object and sealed into the mouth or stomach of a freshly-buried martial artist. After over 10,000 years of time, the blood of the martial artist would permeate into the wood spirit jade, forming corpse jade.
There were only minor differences between corpse jade and blood spirit jade. Moreover, once it was processed and transformed by the collaborative efforts of a martial artist skilled in corpse techniques and a wood-attribute martial artist, the final product was nearly indistinguishable from real blood spirit jade.
This sort of method was extremely rare. Because corpse jade itself was already rare, many appraisal grandmasters that weren’t prepared would also be tricked by this.
After another two hours of appraisal, Li Yifeng laid down the jade bracelet. His eyes flashed with excitement. He was 90% positive that this blood spirit jade was the real deal. Beside him, Zhou Kun had also finished his own appraisal, his eyes flashing with an avaricious gleam. Although his expression was somewhat vague, his movements seemed as if he only reluctantly put down the jade bracelet. It seemed as if he were especially tempted by the jade bracelet.