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Chapter 2.1

Two minutes later, a sweet and airy-looking woman appeared on the big screen. It was none other than host Tan Shu.

Her voice was like a yellow warbler coming out of the valley as she said with a gentle smile, “Everyone has waited for a long time, all the bets from the site and Starnet have been tallied, let’s take a look at the final odds, which are -“

As her voice sounded, the large screen duly displayed material numbers 1-10 with the corresponding odds below.

The 3, 6 and 8 were the most bets and lowest odds at 4.2, 3.6 and 3.9 respectively, with the others mostly between 7 – 12.

Bai Jing’s bet on the No. 4 material wasn’t favoured at 9.5 odds, which means: with the 1,000 star coins he put in as his capital, he would have ended up with 9,500 star coins if he had won.

Jiao Gui smiled as he watched the odds on the big screen, convinced of his vision.

This time he looked exceptionally closely. The No. 3 rough showed well, but there were a few hidden sills at the back that were difficult to spot without close inspection. As the saying goes, ‘there is no fear of large cracks but of small sills’, and the structure of the jade inside could easily be destroyed by fine locks.

So, it had to be numbers 6 and 8 that would come out green!

Jiao Gui was extremely pleased with himself. Although the odds on these two pieces were not high, if he guessed correctly on both pieces, the odds would be doubled.

Money aside, gambling on stones was all about the heart and the satisfaction of betting on the right prize, which no other recreational activity could bring!

He glanced again at No. 4. It was a really average piece of material. Heh heh heh, it looks like the pretty teenager was going to him –

At the same time, the two gamblers on the high table began to prepare for the stone to be solved.

With more than ten betting sessions a day in an auction house like this one, the crowd on the stage and the Starnet patrons were waiting with great excitement, so naturally there was no time to lose.

They had spent a full afternoon picking out these roughs a few days before, and had long since watched the trend of the roughs in order to come up with a result as soon as possible, so that they could now deconstruct the stones immediately.

Ten experienced stone solvers approached each of the ten pieces on the display and quickly cut along the dark lines shown according to the instructions of the two gamblers in conjunction with the performance of the rough stones.

Sound shields and guards came up automatically to prevent excessive noise and debris from disturbing the viewing public.

With the help of the automatic stone-cutting machine, in less than two minutes all ten pieces of rough stones had been cut and with the first cut, either deep or shallow, everyone stared at the big screen, breathing nervously.

Some of these rough stones were cut a third of the way through, while others had just broken through the crust to reveal a finger-wide cut. The master gambler sprinkled some water on them so that the crowd could see them more clearly.

“Look, six out of ten are white stones- the odds are that these are out of the question.”

“Out of the game on the first cut, d*mn it, another loss of money! ”

“Don’t panic, don’t panic, it’s only just begun, wait a little longer. ”

The crowd was in chaos, cursing, laughing, frustrated and expectant, showing all sorts of life.

Jiao Gui couldn’t hide the excitement in his eyes, his loyal, honest face glowing red with excitement as his picks 6 and 8 both came out green!

Bai Jing looked up at the movements of the stone solver on the big screen. His expression very calm, his thin fingers gently pressed to his temples.

Perhaps because of too much hunger, he had an unspeakable feeling of vertigo and his body became unusually tired. Fortunately, his experience in the end times had given him exceptional fortitude, which should be enough to sustain him until the end of the game.

“Look, it’s up! ”

A light green colour came through, lustrous and translucent, pure in colour, which looked particularly striking on the magnified screen, as the master stone solver sprinkled some water on the mouth rubbed out of the No. 6 rough stone.

“It looks like a very good flow, at least it will reach the sticky variety, a big rise! ”

“Miss Lin Shuang is worthy of being the leading Level 2 gambler, so impressive. ”

“Haha, I paid 50,000 star coins for number 6, I’m sure I’ll make a fortune this time! ”

Jiao Gui couldn’t contain the smile on his lips. He had said his vision was right, it was just bad luck that he lost the bet before.

Looking around at the downcast people, his vanity was so satisfied that he couldn’t resist patting Bai Jing’s shoulder, and was not annoyed when the latter dodged him, smiling and saying: “Little brother, it seems your luck is average. It’s okay, you still have a chance in the next game. ”

Bai Jing side-stepped his hand, not bestowing a look on the other man.

Jiao Gui’s eyes flashed with anger and contempt. Hmph, just wait, when you can’t pay back the money there will be time for you to cry.

Seeing as the rough stone was being rubbed, a smile appeared on the lips of the gambler, Lin Shuang and she went forward to confer with the master stone solver on how to focus on this piece of material.

The stone cutter was replaced by a grinding wheel, and under the fine polishing, a large part of the rough material was soon solved, and the smile on the corner of Lin Shuang’s mouth grew thicker and thicker. It wasn’t just the skin that was green, everywhere was green!

She couldn’t wait to spill the water and shine a strong light inside –

“How come?!” A woman’s cry of alarm came from the high platform.

The large screen duly zoomed in on the cut surface of the rough material, only to see that the green jadeite was covered in large and small black dots, densely packed, extending almost to the cut in the light.

“It’s a ringworm, so much-“

“It’s over, it’s over, it’s out of the game! ”

“This black ringworm is completely deep inside the jade, it’s hopeless. ”

“Lost again, what bad luck today! ”

There were a number of bidders for the No. 6 material, so this discovery was followed by lamentations.

Jiao Gui’s expression, which had just been ecstatic, suddenly froze, his face so gloomy that water could drip out of it, and the words he had just spoken were like a huge irony that made his loyal and honest face twist.

How could he get a ringworm? F**k, what a bad luck!

At the same time, the other rough stones were almost solved. The favoured No.3 was full of broken jade inside, No.8 was green by the skin, the flesh of No.6 had been ‘eaten’ by the black ringworm, and the last jadeite solved out of the ten rough stones was –

“No. 4, no way! How can it be number 4?”

Jiao Gui looked at the material unravelled on the big screen and shouted in shock, his face full of disbelief. No. 4 had had a greyish white crust, rough skin and a totally unremarkable presentation, so how could it actually have a jadeite in it?

But there was no room for disbelief, as a piece of luminous green jade, larger than an adult fist, was presented to the crowd on the huge screen.

It had a slightly dull green colour with a fine luminous sheen to its surface and a warm, even colour. It was really a great gain!

Most people were shocked and then accepted the result. Wasn’t it the uncertainty of the jadeite in the rough stones that they were gambling on?

As the saying goes, ‘it’s hard for a god to judge an inch of jade’. Even the Empire’s top gamblers were unable to accurately determine whether there was jadeite in a rough stone and whether it would rise or fall, let alone amateurs like them.

At the end of the round, the sweet-looking host appeared on the screen again and said with a smile, “The results of this bet are in, and the winner is – Miss Shang Yun, a Level 2 Gambler! ”

The dazzling spotlights simultaneously hit the fresh-faced woman on the high stage, her flowery smile mapped out on the big screen. Fans on stage called her name enthusiastically and there were even a number of live globes surrounding her.

“Shang Yun! Shang Yun! Shang Yun! ”

Amidst the cheers of her fans and the awe of all, Shang Yun bowed deeply towards the crowd with tears in her eyes. This was her most brilliant moment as a stone gambler and her most glorious moment!

Fellow gambler Lin Shuang on the other hand, had long ago withdrawn with a cold face. As the loser, the revelry here didn’t belong to her. But next time, she would win!

After Shang Yun left, the host’s sweet voice rang out, “Congratulations to the customers who have successfully placed their bets. Star Coins will be automatically settled to your light brain accounts within five minutes. The next auction will be for this luminous green jadeite -“


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