Chapter 60: Hearthstone Player
For the past few nights, Hyrlan had been watching Joshua and her sister Ciri crunching away at the production of Hearthstone and had provided some technical assistance along the way.
Hyrlan had in fact never thought that her arcanotech device would bring in any income for her as she could not imagine someone who would pay a lot of money to purchase the storage unit of runes.
Even there was any, it was the sort of high-level runes of ‘transference' and ‘conversion', and a rune for storage of images had practically no market in Norland.
Even so, she still enjoyed the process of creating Hearthstone with Joshua and her little sister Ciri. This was because of Joshua's knowledge of runes was something unheard of in her opinion, even the best tutors in her academy did not have such advanced understanding as his.
Be it calculations, languages and the expression of logic had already completely subverted Hyrlan's understanding of runes.
In her view, runes were very simple things. Giving air the ‘freeze' rune would create ice, and then adding the ‘burst' attribute to it would create a simple ‘Ice Burst' spell.
Of the complex magic she had learned in the high academy, most of them required less than a hundred runes, and even higher level magics would need at most about a thousand of them.
However, the application of the ‘programming' Joshua had taught Hyrlan would need over thousands of runes to complete a simple function.
It was so complicated that Hyrlan only learned tiny bits from him even after she had shadowed him for the past few days.
The game of Pong had raised Hyrlan's interest in this brand new application of runes, though. After all, this application was something not even mastered by the best mages in the academy.
Today, when Hyrlan returned to her atelier, she was so shocked by the scene inside her atelier that she was rendered speechless.
If it was not for the sign saying ‘Hyrlan Lloyd' written at the front of the atelier, she would have thought that she had walked into some store selling originium crystals—the premium, high-end ones!
Hyrlan pushed open the door in disbelief as she carefully stepped into her atelier.
This rather narrow atelier had been totally smothered by a large pile of originium crystals, and they were not those inferior ones that could only store one or two runes in them.
Hyrlan looked around and found every single piece of crystal to be of terrifyingly high quality.
Her initial estimation was that the price of some of the crystals there was so high that she could not pay it even with her whole-month of scholarship funds, while the other half was something even her annual stipend would not be able to cover.
Where did all these crystals come from?
Hyrlan walked a few steps inside the atelier before not daring to continue any further, fearing that if she were to accidentally crush one of the crystals, she will have to sacrifice her allowances for the next few months to repay them.
Just as Hyrlan was mired in confusion, the sound of a carriage stopping outside the atelier rang out.
Hyrlan looked through the window and noticed that it was a cargo carrier.
Three dwarfs jumped out of the carriage as they carried something that looked like a cage into her atelier.
"Hyrlan, you're back?"
Joshua walked down from the upper floor from the atelier, and the ground floor had already been completely turned into an originium crystal storage place.
"Where… did all these originium crystals come from?"
Hyrlan saw Joshua stepped on a few originium crystals that could be worth hundreds of gold coins and felt her chest tightened.
The Lloyds have a habit of being frugal at all times. Not only her sister, Ciri, but even Hyrlan had also recently been living a very spartan life, and she would have kept even the most inferior of originium crystals well.
"Bought it from the dwarfs. The place will be much tidier once they are all assembled."
Before Hyrlan could even answer, the atelier's door was pushed open as a couple of Frostaxe dwarfs came in and place a cage on the ground.
"This is something the Great Elder had asked us to catch, now it's delivered it's off our hands now!"
The lead dwarf greeted them as he put down the cage before pushing the door open again and left.
This sort of service attitude back on Earth would definitely be bombarded with a flood of negative reviews.
The dwarfs' customer service attitude aside, their delivery efficiency was top notch. Joshua had reached an agreement with Frostaxe in the morning, and by evening, the crystals delivered by the dwarfs had already piled up the entire ground floor of the atelier.
With a bonus gift of a…. pet.
Joshua walked to the cage and saw that it contained a turtle-like creature.
"This is… an originium lizard?"
Hyrlan looked in slight disbelief at the dull creature in the cage. She had only seen this kind of subterranean creature in the books.
"An originium lizard?"
Joshua only heard from Frostaxe that this was a special pet, and the dwarfs of Norland had raised a whole lot of different lizards, but this creature was barely half a meter long, and there were glowing crystals on its back, looking more like a turtle than a lizard.
"A very rare creature. The crystal on its back is a very high-quality originium crystal, and could probably store more runes than these crystals here… But it is not that suitable as materials for the mage's arcanotech devices."
Hyrlan had never thought that she would actually see a living specimen someday.
It was rumored that the crystal cluster on the back of an originium lizard could be inscribed with runes of a nationwide teleportation array, but no one would need a teleportation array that would run away as even a slight movement would destroy the entire teleportation circle array.
"Will the crystals on their back be useless after their death?"
Joshua picked up one of the originium crystals on the ground and tossed it towards the lizard. It then slowly crawled to the crystal and swallowed it whole.
"The books seemed to be suggesting that." Hyrlan had read many books but probably still did not have the knowledge her wandering sister Ciri had.
"So since I can't kill it, then I can only raise it… You shall be the Hearthstone's server then!"
Joshua tossed another crystal spar at the lizard as it turned its head as slowly as a sloth does.
Well, the server of Ubisoft, a well-known game company back on Earth was as good as a potato, so Joshua using a lizard as a server was totally a-okay.
The number of runes that can be stored in the crystal on the back of the lizard was in the hundreds of millions. This was still a juvenile lizard, and once it has done molting, or a server upgrade later, it could store up to tens of billions of runes within it.
"You bought all of these crystals from the dwarfs?"
Hyrlan knew that Joshua was the producer of "Beauty and the Demon", and certainly had plenty of money in hand. After all, he had set off the trend of discussing the movie in her academy.
Just like her best friend Sansa, even the girl who believed in the Holy Light had always wanted to meet Belle or Zenarth's actor.
"Bought? To be precise, it was exchanged for three cards and a hero's avatar," Joshua said.
Cards? Hyrlan was already prepared to hear Joshua pop the tens of thousand gold coin figures, but for three cards and a hero's avatar for so many crystals?
"The Epic-level card Gorehowl, the Legendary-level cards Grom Hellscream and the Legendary-level card Alexstrasza, and also the Dwarven King of Khaz Modan, Magni Bronzebeard. Three cards and a hero's avatar allowed me to purchase these crystals at a more favorable price."
Joshua explained to Hyrlan.
"This… wasn't a Hearthstone card pack worth three gold coins? How did you pull that off?"
Joshua had told Hyrlan about the pricing of the card packs while she was creating the game with him.
A card pack had five cards in it, and he had exchanged three cards for originium crystals that were worth tens of thousands? And Joshua had paid a discounted price for it…
How?! Hyrlan simply could not comprehend.
"How did I do that? It's because that Great Elder of the Frostaxe Clan is a Hearthstone player." Joshua gave a very simple answer.