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288 A Valuable Lesson

    Daniel quietly walked back to the booth where virgil was currently looking at, and once he approached him, he noticed that he was holding a small metallic sphere with odd inscriptions in his small hands. He was rotating it, and looking it from all angles, almost as if trying to find something on its surface.

    "What is that?" asked Daniel to the seemingly busy kid.

    This time, instead of answering back with the sign language, Virgil thought "There is something inside this thing." at the same time, he shook the metallic sphere next to Daniel's ears in an attempt to demonstrate his point.

    The owner of the booth looked at Daniel with an embarrassed face, and said "I bought this sphere in lot at an auction.. It's just a decoration, but I believe there is a broken piece inside. I think your.." he then stopped for a moment, and after looking back at the kid, he added "..your son must have gotten it wrong."

    Daniel did not bother to correct the man, and said "How much is it?"

    With a lightning fast speed, the merchant grabbed the piece of paper which showed the price of the sphere, and with the excuse of checking the number written in it, he hid it. He then said "The objects was auctioned by the daughter of a family of rich merchants. While their name is worth nothing anymore, the items they possessed were beautiful and precious. Twenty perfect crystals is the price of this item."

    In the time the man had used his immortal cultivation at the seventh stage to instantly cover the price of the item, Daniel had easily been able to look at the actual price, and notice that it was a tenth of what the merchant was asking.

    Noticing how Daniel was dressed, and how he was allowing Virgil to grab objects and play with them however he wanted, he had fallen into the wrong impression that Daniel was a mercenary with a soft spot for his son.. So he decided to increase the asking price in hope that this young father, with a cultivation which he felt was at the peak fifth stage, could not be faster than him.

    A faint smile formed on the corners of Daniel's lips, as he said "I will give you what you have asked, but whatever is inside it, he keeps it."

    Externally, the man was smiled politely back at Daniel, but internally, he was calling him an idiot, and was happy to have sold something at ten times the original price.

    "Of course." he responded.

    After making sure of the agreement, Daniel gave twenty perfect crystals to the merchant, and just as he was about to leave with virgil, he felt his small hand tap on his right arm. Daniel turned to look at him, and noticed that he was holding two different objects in his hands. One of them was the sphere, now torn out of its former shape.. And the other object, was a small translucent pearl.

    What Daniel had felt was odd about that metallic sphere, was the fact that from it, all he could feel was simple metal essence.. But if there was something broken inside this sphere, he should have felt two different parts which were not attached to each other.

    His first thought was that the sphere was a filled with metal, but the inscriptions and moving object inside made him curious.

    Apparently, his hunch was correct, as the seemingly useless object was in fact a puzzle in the shape of a sphere, and its purpose, was to work as a safe for whatever was inside it.

    When the merchant, and most of the people close by saw the pearl in the kid's hand, their eyes opened wide in surprise. What was important about this pearl was not what it was, but the feel that it emanated.. A feel that only spatial containers had.

    Virgil left the pearl on Daniel's palm, and went back into focusing on the sphere.. Which he assembled back into its original state, before disassembling it one more time.

    Daniel observed the pill for a few moments, and after making sure that there was nothing wrong with it, he pushed part of his consciousness inside it, and took one of the objects stored inside. A moment later, he was holding a light blue gem the size of a fingernail, which emanated a thick natural water essence.

    "..what.."

    "Isn't that.."

    "No way.."

    Numerous voices could be heard coming from the crowd, but the most shocked of them all, was the merchant himself, which knew exactly what this items was.. With a mouth opened to its limits, he pointed at the gem on Daniel's palm, and shouted "THAT'S A FUCKING WATER GEM!!"

    Unaware of what a water gem was, Daniel ignored the man's screams, and put the light blue gem back into the small bead, then tapped on Virgil's shoulder, and prepared to walk away... but from behind him, the merchant shouted "Hey! You can't leave like that! I didn't know the content of the item! GIVE IT BACK!"

    Without turning around, Daniel said "You have gotten ten times the price of the object for whatever was inside. Just take the loss." then tried to walk out of the marketplace, as he had already attracted enough attention and he did not wanted to cause a scene before even getting to do what he was here to do.. But before he could go far, the crowd around him thickened.

    Daniel looked around, and quickly noticed the intentions of the majority of the individuals that blocked his path.. Which while wearing faces of righteousness and pride, their thoughts expressed something completely different.

    Virgil, which now had managed to compose the sphere back together, looked around and began to panic.. He started to remember the day when a much smaller group of people had attacked him and his brother.. And since he did not know the vastity of Daniel's powers, he believed that history was about to repeat itself.

    However, his increasingly chaotic state of mind was interrupted by Daniel's hand, which pressed gently on his head.

    When Virgil turned to look at Daniel, he saw the personification of calmness.

    "What can I help you gentlemen with in this fine morning?" Daniel asked while putting his other hand into his pocket, and crossing his legs carelessly.

    "You have to give what you've taken back.." Said the guard of one of the other individuals that were browsing for items, and that had approached after realizing what Daniel had found.

    "Yeah!.. Theft is punishable by death." Added a bald man in heavy armor, and black cape.

    While saying these words, these individuals all had the same idea in mind. To force Daniel to give the item back, and then find a way to steal it from the merchant.. While instead, the merchant was looking at the oddly helpful people with doubt.

    Daniel ignored the crowd that formed around him, and said to Virgil out loud "Not every person who wants to attack you is capable of hurting you.. Look at these idiots, they don't know what is to come.. You get to feel fear only when you can't prevent your opponent from doing what he wants to do.. So, what do you do in order to lower the chance of it happening?"

    Virgil became pensive for a few moments, then formed three symbols with his small hands. Their meaning was "You get stronger.."

    Daniel smiled with satisfaction, then disappeared from where he was standing.

    When he reappeared, there was no trace of battle on his body, and he was showing a casual expression and fingernails sharpened by metal. A few of the people with the worst thoughts were now lying on the ground unconscious, while the ones that were not as aggressive, found themselves with their armors unbuckled, and hanging from their body. The straps that kept the pieces of armor together were cut cleanly.

    The entire duration was counted in single two digit moments, and the numerous greedy warriors had barely been able to see Daniel disappear before they found themselves on the ground, or stripped of their enchanted armors.

    While ignoring the terrified looks of the people around him, Daniel kneeled next to Virgil, and said "There was a time when cultivators became stronger just in order to pursue power.. But in the end, that is a mentality that only a few people have.. The real reason people cultivate, is to lower their chance of being killed." After finishing to give his lesson to Virgil, Daniel turned to look at the merchant, and asked "Still want the item back?"

    "No.." responded the merchant with mixed emotions. Daniel's words had given him a lot to think.. While the water gem were extremely precious.. Even if he got it back, he would never have the power to keep them. To him, it was better to be happy about his small earnings, and avoid trouble.

    Suddenly, Aeron appeared next to Daniel, and without even looking around, he said "I have found it."

    "Great.. Just in time.. Mind taking care of this?" Asked Daniel after turning to look at Aeron's masked face.

    Aeron finally turned around, and noticed the dozens of cultivators laying on the ground unconscious, and trembling in fear. They had barely survived an encounter that they themselves had instigated.

    "Sure.." responded Aeron as his eyes began to glow of a brilliant green color.

    From the point of view of the crowd, they had suddenly found themselves either injured or undressed, and regrouped in a square within the marketplace. They couldn't remember anything that had happened in the past two minutes, and had no idea how they had gotten there. The only thing of which they were all in agreement of, was how painful the splitting headache that they all felt, was.

    -----

    Later that day, Daniel, Aeron and Virgil went to visit the company which Aeron had picked..

    The three went through the entrance of a massive and majestic building, above which was a banner where the words 'Bidding Arena Auction House' were painted clearly. The building was guarded by powerful cultivators, and people came and went from its entrance in constant streams. It was clear that an auction was going to take place soon.

    Once in, Daniel approached the counter while smiling politely.

    "Good evening sir, would you like to purchase a seat for the auction? We do not have three sequential seats, but we do have three spots, and two free private booths in the balconies." Said the young man after noticing an approaching Daniel.

    Daniel waved his arm slightly, before placing them on the counter, and saying "I am not here to buy, just to sell. Can you get someone who can evaluate an item for me?"

    "Of course. What kind of object would you like to sell, Sir?"

    "An alchemical recipe." Responded Daniel with a casual tone.

    "One moment please." Said the young man before calling for a second young man that was waiting by the side, and asking him to call for the elder that dealt with alchemical objects.

    After a couple of minutes, the young man came out of one of the doors behind the counter along with an old woman, which looked at Daniel with a fair amount of doubt, and said "You wish to put an alchemical recipe in the auction?"

    Her doubt was caused by the fact that Daniel did not look at all like an alchemist, and therefore must be one of those inexperienced mercenaries that are cheated out of their pay by being given worthless recipe, and that hoped to make money out of them by selling them.

    "I am. Is there a more private place we can go to?" Asked Daniel after noticing the large number of people around him.

    The woman did not seemed too convinced, and just as she was about to ask Daniel not to make her waste time, she noticed two bright green lights coming from behind the mask that the man behind Daniel was wearing. For a moment she was confused, but then, she shook her doubts off of her head, and said "Please, follow me."

    She slowly lead Daniel into a private room, and then, after inviting Daniel to take a seat, she sat in the couch opposite to him, and divided by a coffee table. "So, what is the recipe that you wish to auction?" She asked with newly found impatience.
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