Child Of Light Volume 3

Volume 03

Chapter 1 – Brotherly Feelings

At the moment, Ma Ke was reading a book in his dorm. “Boss, why was Teacher Di looking for you?”

“He doesn’t want me to enter the Royal Advanced Magic Academy.”

At the time, Ma Ke and I were facing each other when I gave him the big surprise. “Boss, your magic is excellent, not attending would be a waste. Why would Teacher Di think this way?”

“You don’t need to worry. It’s like this.” I repeated the explanation Teacher Di told me in his office. “How about it?
Come with me to and get some experience. Us two brothers, even if we don’t increase our magic power we will still increase our knowledge”

Ma Ke didn’t agree happily like I thought he would. After muttering to himself for a bit he spoke: “Boss, let me think on it a bit. I want to go home and discuss with my family first and I’ll tell you my decision tomorrow. Is that fine?”

I hit him with my fist. “You brat, this isn’t like you at all. I don’t remember you being so straightforward. Fine  then.  I won’t force you. We’ll talk again tomorrow.”

Ma Ke’s answer made me a bit angry, so without saying anything else, I went to practice magic by myself.

I’m already fully grown, from my appearance alone you would think that I’m an adult. However, my face still has a juvenile look I haven’t outgrown yet. The following is the personal data of me and Ma Ke: (The following data regarding the protagonist’s body is all according to what the author set for them at this age.)

Name:Zhang Gong Wei Height:181cm Weight:70kg

Major     Magic:Light     element Minor Magic:Spatial element
Magical Beast:Xiao Jin(Five Clawed Golden Dragon)

Overall Magic Strength:Magic Scholar(Hasn’t been authenticated by the Mage Union) Magic Control:S

(Grades are divided into S、A、B、C、D、E、F)

Magic Power:A Magic Perception:SS Magic Defense:A
Magic Attack:A Speed:A(Unable to fly)

Physical Attacks:F Physical Defense:F Stamina:D

Name:Ma Ke Sai Height:180cm Weight:74kg

Major Magic:Fire element Minor Magic:Wind element

Magical Beast:Fire Lion(I don’t know where this brat obtained a growth type Fire Lion. It has already reached the 8th
rank.)

Overall Magic Strength:Magic Scholar(Hasn’t been authenticated by the Mage Union) Magic Control:S

Magic Power:B Magic Perception:A Magic Defense:A

Magic Attack:A Speed:A(Able to fly)
Physical Attacks:F Physical Defense:F Stamina:E

Due to the fact that Ma Ke and I are big eaters, our bodies grew very quickly. Especially our height which has already surpassed most adults. With our refined appearances, we have become very popular with the female students. However, I not very interested in these kind of matters. In addition, I find girls very annoying so there hasn’t been any real developments with anyone. On the other hand, Ma Ke was all over Hai Yue, and he hadn’t bothered to acknowledge any other girls. Yet the funny thing was although me and Hai Yue have become friends, she still refuses to acknowledge Ma Ke. It seems he has been greatly influenced by his nickname, the Red Haired Rice Cake.

The next day, I could not wait much longer and I went to go find Ma Ke, but he found me first. Ma Ke was listless like a frosted eggplant. Seeing him like this, I immediately had an ominous premonition. As expected, Ma Ke rejected me without even facing me.

“Boss….. I’m sorry. I can’t accompany you on your journey.” Ma Ke said in a low voice.

I stood up straight away. “Why? Why can’t you come? Don’t tell me… You don’t want to go adventuring with me? Aren’t we good brothers?”

“Yes.” Ma Ke resolutely replied. “Boss, I have a secret trouble that I can’t tell you. I’m sorry. I really can’t go with you.”

“What kind of secret trouble can’t you tell me? We can settle
it together.” I was unwilling to give up. After all, I don’t want to separate with someone who’s been my brother for so many years.”

“I truly can’t tell you. I can only tell you this, it’s a problem with my family. My family won’t let me go.”

In all these years we have been at the academy together, not once have I been to Ma Ke’s home. I only know that his family is very wealthy. After hearing this, I gradually calmed down. After all, I can’t force others to do what they don’t want to.

We faced each other in silence for a long time but I broke the silence. I helplessly said, “Forget about it. Since your family refuses to let you go, then its fine. Study diligently when you go
to the Royal Advanced Magic Academy. I’ll be back in two years anyways.” At that moment, I felt very helpless and lonely. It seems that I will have to face everything by myself in the future. This may have been fate’s plan. I must walk down my path by myself.

Ma Ke suddenly threw himself onto me and tightly  hugged me. “Boss…..” While he was breaking down in tears, I tolerantly held him by the shoulders as my own tears uncontrollably flowed too.
Our emotions gradually settled down and I gently separated from him. “Although we’ll be separated temporarily,  we  will still be brothers for life.”

“Of course. Brothers for life.” Pausing for a moment, Ma Ke continued: “Boss did you know I really want to go with you on the journey, but I have no control over my destiny. I must listen to my family and do as they arrange. Although I’m  not  the eldest son, I still have responsibilities and obligations to my family. We’re a really big clan so I must do my best for my
clan.”

“Okay then. No need to say it again. I understand. You don’t need to explain to me since we’re brothers. Let all of our words be said.”

The sincere friendship between me and Ma Ke was practically permeating throughout the room. Neither of us wanted  to speak.

I already wanted to go tell Teacher Di that I no longer wished to go on a journey. But then I thought of Teacher Di’s ash gray hair and his earnest expectations for me. I couldn’t. I can still see Ma Ke again, but what about Teacher Di? Does he still have the vitality to fulfill his dreams and cultivate another person
who has the possibility of becoming a Grand Magister? (Note: After my third year, Teacher Xiu didn’t come visit me anymore. According to him, he wanted to go out and travel.)

During the final month, me and Ma Ke were practically inseparable. Both of us highly treasured these final period of time we had together. Every day we would stay in the same dorm, practice magic and eat together. But the day of departure finally came.

With my strength, I didn’t even need to participate in the graduation exam and just smoothly attained my authentication as a Great Mage from the Mage’s Union. (Teacher Di didn’t want me to reveal my strength too early. A 16 year old Magic Scholar would shock the whole world. But like this, many people would still drop their jaws in shock.)

Chapter 2 – Departure From The Academy

I will have to leave the school that I lived in and learned in, my second home. I truly hate to part with this place. I looked fondly at every shrub and tree at the academy. Why did time pass by so fast, making me come and go in a flurry?

At my side, Teacher Di looked at my reluctance to leave, and with a soft sigh said, “If you must to leave, you have to leave. You can always return. When you come back, I am sure that you will bring much glory to this academy, and also to me. You are already a grown boy, don’t act like a small child. Go.”

We walked slowly toward the academy’s gate. I turned my head around, looking at the large words engraved in solid granite, “Royal Intermediate Magic Academy”. My eyes grew moist once more.

“Boss, Wait! I’ve come to send you off.” Ma Ke ran over, panting. Originally I didn’t tell him that I was leaving today because I didn’t want to experience such a depressing occasion.

“Why didn’t you tell me you were leaving? I’m your only brother!” Ma Ke’s face wore an expression indistinguishable from laughing or crying. “This is for you. You must quickly return. I’ll wait for you at the Advanced Magic Academy. We are still going study together.” Ma Ke took out a dagger from his bosom. It had a gorgeous exterior appearance, the dagger’s sheath was embedded with all kinds of gems. I went over to receive it. I didn’t observe it carefully. After all, my heart was completely filled with feelings of separation, I couldn’t be concerned with anything else. Aside me, Teacher Di’s eyes flashed with a peculiar vigor.
I can’t stop now, else it will be even harder to leave. I grit my teeth and turned around and set foot on the journey home with Teacher Di. With great difficulty, I resisted the urge to look back. But I could not hold back my tears, they flowed freely.

“Don’t miss Ma Ke too much. Do you want to go up to the sky and have a look?”

Teacher Di’s words diverted my attention, “The sky? How would I go up to the sky?”

“Don’t tell me you forgot? My minor is wind, we can fly.” Teacher Di cast a wind soaring enchantment on himself and slowly floated off the ground.

“This is my first time seeing you fly. So then how do I fly?” I can’t possibly use wind magic.

“I’ll carry you. Hold onto my waist.”

Like that, Teacher Di and I ascended to the skies. It didn’t feel bad at all. The forests and villages underneath looked just like ants. A light breeze brushed against my face. It truly felt like we were immortals. I enviously said, “When will I be able to fly?”

“It’s not impossible. Even if you can’t use wind magic, later on
you will have opportunities to study some top class Dou Qi with similar effects. After that you will definitely be able to fly. “

“You can use Dou Qi to fly?” I asked with doubt.

“That’s right. In addition, flying with Dou Qi is much faster than flying with magic. It’s just that it cannot be  sustained nearly as long.

Teacher Di’s words arose a yearning to learn Dou Qi, being able to fly is truly good. In the future when I have an opportunity, I must diligently learn Dou Qi. So long as I can use it to fly, that’ll be enough.

About an hour of flying in the sky, I saw Teacher Di’s complexion turn a bit pale. After all, flying for such a  long period of time would consume a great amount of magic energy. In addition he had also carried a person. Even though Teacher Di was a magister, the burden was quite large.

“Teacher Di, let’s go down and let you rest.” I said with concern.

“Alright, Ah… I’m already old, my body feels like dying. It seems I can no longer bear the burden of using magic for a long period of time.”
We landed on a small hillside and rested a while. Then we continued on our journey.

By flying, we finally made it to my hometown. Currently, I am the pride of the village. When everyone finds out that I have the means to become a Grand Magister, the endless amount of praise and flattering would send me to the sky. When Father and Mother saw me come back, they were so happy, they didn’t know what to say. I don’t dare tell anyone that I returned with one of the only ten magisters on the continent, otherwise the pot would surely explode.

After we rested for a day, Teacher Di talked to my mother and father about letting me learn from traveling. They were both silent. In their minds, the Royal Advanced Magic Academy was the most orthodox and proven path. In addition they were also concerned for my safety. However, they revered Teacher Di and couldn’t say anything.

How could the experienced Teacher Di not see this? He patiently explained to them the purpose of allowing me to learn from my travels and his expectations of me, as well as the various means he will use to ensure my safety. In the  end, Father and Mother were satisfied and allowed me to travel.

At night, Teacher Di and I took a walk outside the village. I was immersed in the enchanting scenery of the night. Teacher Di had suddenly stopped and solemnly said to me, “Zhang Gong, this traveling assignment is truly formidable. For your safety, I will gift you with many, different things.” He took out three magic scrolls from his bosom.

“The ability of these three magic scrolls are the  same.  In short, they are escape scrolls. They can immediately move you 50 kilometers away. Hold onto them well.”

Taking the magic scrolls I said, “Thank you, Teacher.”

In addition, I asked the Continent’s number one magister to set up a magic array at the academy. When you encounter a problem you are unable to solve during your assignment, you can use this magic array to return to the academy. The drawing and activation method are written in this booklet. You should memorize it as quickly as possible, and become able to achieve a teleportation accuracy of at least 90% or greater.” Done talking, Teacher Di handed me a small, frail booklet.

After I took the booklet, Teacher Di also said, “Pay attention. When you use this magic array, your magic power must be in top condition, otherwise a deviation will occur.

“I understand, I will practice it well.”

Also, I’ve deposited a thousand diamond coins into your amethyst card, it should be enough for you to use. Don’t be too stingy. For your assignment, the divine artifact’s approximate location is in a Dalu Kingdom’s province within a valley. You will go there to look for it. That’s it. That is all I wanted to tell you.”

I attentively memorized what Teacher Di said. Suddenly he remembered to say something else, “That’s right! Last time before you departed, Ma Ke gave you a dagger. It isn’t any ordinary dagger. Although it isn’t comparable with a divine artifact it does contain some power. It can penetrate magic and Dou Qi defenses. Use it with caution.”

Chapter 3 – Being Away from Home

The dazzling sunshine woke me from my sleep, reminding me of the loathsome sun from my childhood. It truly does feel like I have grown up. After washing my face, I went outside and took a deep breath. When the light elements within me sensed the fresh air, they grew excited, thus giving me much vigor. Today is the day I set off. I’ll be separated from the most familiar places of my life.

“Zhang Gong, it’s time to eat breakfast.” Mom’s voice carried over from the kitchen.

“Coming!” At this moment, I truly wish to cherish the short amount of time I have left with my family before my departure. I hurriedly ran downstairs. The whole family was there sitting in a circle around the dining table.

“Ah. Eat some more Zhang Gong. You won’t be able to eat mom’s cooking for a long time.” Mother benevolently added more and more food onto my bowl.

“You should eat too mom. You can be at ease, I will definitely return home safe and sound.”

“After seeing you two like this, I don’t know if letting Zhang Gong go on a journey is a good choice anymore.” Teacher Di jokingly said after seeing a meal full of deep affection.
At last, the time of departure has come.

“Pay attention to your safety on the journey.” Mom said with red eyes.

“Don’t disappoint me.” Dad said with trembling hands.

“Don’t forget about the escape scrolls I gave you.” Said Teacher Di.
Although I was reluctant to part, I bid farewell to them and set foot on my journey of learning.

As I walked away from the village, I repeatedly turned back to take a look. I’ve left home already. The melancholy I’m feeling within my heart is impossible to resolve. According to Teacher Di’s plan, I first have to go to the Xiuda kingdom to find his good friend. The Dean of Xiuda’s Knight Academy, Teacher Li Ke Wen. I’ll cultivate there for a bit before continuing my mission.

Without any feelings of anxiousness, I slowly walked on upon the road while admiring my surroundings beautiful scenery. My homeland is actually so beautiful. Ahead of me there was some steam drizzling down. I opened up the map Teacher Di gave me and inspected it. My walking speed truly isn’t that slow. I have already reached Serene Dream Lake. After crossing another province, I’ll be at the Xiuda kingdom’s borders. In the past, I heard Teacher Di say that this area’s scenery was exceptionally beautiful. I want to hurry up and go take a look. I increased my
pace and advanced towards Serene Dream Lake.

Ah! The lake sure is big. I can’t even see the shore on the other side. I can even see the fish in the clear dark blue lake water. Truly beautiful. I crouched down beside the lake and splashed my face with the clear lake water. It felt so cold. So comfortable. Right now it was the start of summer so soaking in the ice-cold lake water is indeed extremely comfortable.

I took off my shoes and began walking in the water. Enjoying this scenic lake and mountain gave me a wonderful feeling. Suddenly, there was a rustle behind me. I turned my head to take a look. I saw seven or eight people in black running in my direction. It looks like their figures are awfully vigorous.  It seems that they practice martial skills. From their slender figures, I can make out that they’re all women.
As they progressed, I counted how many there was. There was nine people. Today there was such a great heat yet they’re wearing cloaks that cover up their whole body. It looks like the tallest one is their boss while all the other one’s seemed like stars holding up the moon. I don’t know how they grew up, but why do they all need to wear cloaks that cover up their whole body? I can’t help but stare at them.

I don’t know if it was my stare that was too glaring, but one of them noticed me. “Hey, that brat over there. What are you looking at! Hurry up and get lost. We want to rest over here. If you keep looking we’ll scoop out your eyes.”

Wow! They’re so violent. She truly is a loathsome woman. It goes without saying that the lady wants to rest and being the gentleman that I am, I was going to go to the side. However, after hearing her words I’m not going anymore. I refuse to acknowledge her. I raised my head to her and hummed a tune from my hometown. “Sometimes the hurriedly worn socks will be inside-out, sometimes I really want to wash dishes tomorrow
since I’m too muddle-headed and just a bit lazy. Don’t bother me and let me be a spoiled child sometimes~” This song was something dad was often singing called “Great Woman”. Maybe he sang it because he was afraid of mom. After listening to it for so long, naturally I learned it.

Seeing that I didn’t react, the one who shouted angrily at me before began walking towards me while spitting anger. Apparently she wants to be rude to me. Hmph! Who’s afraid of who here?

The leader of the young women began speaking. “Ling  Zi, don’t cause trouble. Have you already forgotten what my dad told you to do when going out?” What a sweet-sounding voice. Even a skylark’s chirping would be eclipsed by her splendor. In comparison to my own voice, it’s so much more compelling. If she sang a song, I wonder what it would be like. I began letting my imagination run wild.

That girl called Ling Zi ferociously groaned before saying: “I’ll forgive you this time. Hurry up and get lost!”

I don’t know if it’s because of her resentful words or if I just wanted to listen to their leader’s beautiful voice some more, I hid my disdain beneath my contempt and provoked her. “Is this place part of your property? It’s so amazing. Even if you try to drag me, the young gentleman that is I, won’t leave.”

Sure enough, my desire was achieved. That girl’s leader spoke again. “Ling Zi, go teach him a lesson. But don’t kill him.”
So pleasant to hear, it truly is pleasant to hear. Why won’t she speak a few more sentences? While I was being infatuated with her, something troublesome came. Maybe that girl called Ling Zi already thought I wasn’t pleasing to the eye, but when she heard her master’s command, she immediately fluttered over. She took out a jeweled sword from her waist and swung, just barely missing my head.

A cold wind attacked me, causing me to struggle with shivers. I said: “Aiya! Resorting to killing already?” With a single teleport, I moved 10 meters away. Dangerous, simply too dangerous. A few locks of my hair seems to have been cut. What a fast sword! “You’re actually coming at me!”

“So you’re actually a mage. No wonder you’re so shameless.” I was currently wearing clothes that commoners wear. So  she only knew I was a mage after seeing me use magic.

Wa! Are all mages shameless? I gloomily said within my heart. It doesn’t matter if you insult me, but my teacher, friends and my parents are all mages! For their sake, I will teach you a lesson. “Oh light elements, my friend, congregate into sharp arrows and annihilate the enemies before me!”  The strengthened light arrows were fired from my hands.

She appeared to have a very hateful appearance after seeing me fire off some light arrows. The sword in her hands began emitting a week silver colored light and in a moment, she cut down my light arrow. Following that, she immediately rushed towards me. After all, it is only natural that a warrior would try to engage a mage in close quarters combat.

Wa! That’s Heaven Dou Qi. I’ve heard of it before, but this time I’m actually seeing it! It seems that I’ll have to use some of
my actual skill. “Oh light elements, my friend, transform into Holy Light.” Brilliant rays of white light rushed forth from my body, enveloping everything in my surroundings. It formed a defensive screen. This is the advanced class defensive light magic: Holy Light. When she clashed with my Holy Light, it looked as if she was suffering in pain. She retreated with lightning speed. From head to toe, she was trembling.

“You. You’re a light mage.”

Chapter 4 – First Encounter With Magic Race

Not yet finished talking, she fell down.

That isn’t possible. My “Holy Light” is a defense type spell, it doesn’t contain any offensive qualities. How did it become like this? While I was completely confused, the young woman in charge took out her hand.

She murmured many incantation verses. On her hand appeared a dark violet sphere. With a wave of her hand, she did not attack me but rather aimed at the girl named Ling Zi. Ling Zi seemed to feel much better. She no longer trembled and started to breath deep breathes.
What kind of magic is this? I’ve never seen it before. “Young woman, what magic did you use? I’ve never seen it before.” I curiously asked.

The sound of the young woman’s beautiful voice came, “Don’t let him run. Kill him.”

“Stop. I only said a few words yet all of you want to kill me. You’re all too fierce.” By the time I finished speaking, they had already surrounded me. I continuously strengthened my defensive enchantments, waiting to see how they will handle me.

Their leader still hadn’t acted, it was only that the eight had surrounded me under her command. They had started to form a
circle, I believe they are using a martial skill. However, I discovered they actually haven’t moved. Not good. They started chanting an incantation.

A thick, black fog came out from their bodies and completely enveloped me. I protected my body with Holy Light and when the black fog touched it, it made a fizzling sound. It seemed to be some sort of corroding acid. I immediately felt a large increase in pressure. It was truly formidable but Holy Light continued to resist it.

“Oh Great Light Elements, I request you to allow me  to borrow your formidable power. Allow the limitless light of the earth to shine!” The current Brilliant Empire was unlike before, I could fully control the spell’s strength and position. So naturally, I surrounded them using an area release spell. Following my chant, I slowly floated off the ground, surrounded in blinding white light. I lifted my head and the gold dan within my upper Dantian enveloped my body with a third of my magic power. The radiance surrounding me shrunk back for a moment
and then instantly burst forth. The white rays of light rapidly engulfed the black fog, counter attacking the surrounding eight women. I held back, not using my full strength. I didn’t want to kill. I still had a lingering fear when I remembered the scene when I had first killed.

In face of the eight women’s critical situation, their leader rapidly cast a ring of purple energy, wrapping around them and protecting them from my Brilliant Empire’s attack. Their defensive spell was obviously hurried. Although they managed to react against my attack, they were still injured to an extent.

The eight women’s cloaks were all destroyed by the threads of light element, exposing their form fitting magic armor. A few cracks had appeared on their armor. Ah, what beautiful girls. Not only were their appearances beautiful but even their figures had no flaws. Even I, who held little interest in women, had a quickened heartbeat.

But when I lifted my head, I was astonished. It was impossible words to describe the beautiful scene before me. This  was beauty unlike that of Serene Dream Lake. To compare the two would be like comparing a glimmering ember and the luminous moon.

Their leader wasn’t in the same, sorry condition as her eight subordinates. But the cloak that concealed her face had fallen off, revealing her indescribably beautiful appearance.  It  was that beautiful scene that stunned me.

So beautiful, so very beautiful. Out of all the beautiful women I’ve met, they are incapable of being compared with her. She by no means held a vulgar beauty but a delicate and graceful one. If all the woman of the world were to be compared, she alone would stand above the rest. I, who had never wavered before,
started salivating.

The beautiful woman saw me act like a lecherous pervert and noticed her own cloak had fallen off, quickly covering herself. “Teacher, quickly, help me kill this pervert!”

An eerie voice arrived, “Who dares to vex my little princess?” A chilly wind blew, the ice cold voice removed “passion” from my heart, and not even a sliver remained.

In the wake of the terrifying voice, a black smoke flashed. Then at the beautiful girl’s side appeared a completely bound bamboo pole. To say he was a bamboo pole would wouldn’t be a slightest bit an exaggeration. Although I couldn’t clearly see his stature, it would appear that out of his entire body, only the
palm of his hand could be considered wide.

“Teacher, it is him. He already knows our secret and have seen our appearances. Quickly, help me kill him.” This beautiful woman is truly not capable of love. How could such a sweet voice say such vicious words, so readily willing to kill?

“Beautiful woman, you are very vicious. However, I like that.
How about we become friends?” I frivolously tried to stop her.

Without waiting for her to speak, the bamboo pole had float over. Approaching me, he released a formidable, imposing pressure, rendering me unable to breathe. A master! I went on guard. A true master. Aside from Teacher Di or Teacher Long, I haven’t encountered anyone else capable of making me feel this
pressure.

I immediately became wary, covering my body with light element and defensive enchantments.

That shady, ominous voice emerged once more, “So it turns out to be a light magic boy. Aren’t those who learn light magic few in number?”

“Who said very few? How would you know, bamboo pole? Right now, light magic is very  popular  throughout  the continent and I am the worst one!” Humph, I must confront and mislead him. But I hadn’t expect that these precise words had allowed humanity to avoid a calamity.

“What did you say, is this true? The continent’s people use light magic? The intelligence I received as not as such.” He is truly frank and outspoken, unable to differ lies from truth.

I deliberately put on a serious face and said with exceptional earnest, “Of course it is true, do I have reason to lie to you?” Of course I do, you can’t tell lies from truth, even with your life on the line, hehe. Within my mind I sinisterly laughed.

“Teacher, don’t listen to his nonsense. Kill him first, you cannot let him reveal our secret.” The beautiful woman yelled from the side. This beautiful woman is really out to get I, her daddy. There isn’t a single good thing about beautiful women. In the future, I’d better not take a beautiful woman for a wife.

“Fine. I’ll first settle this, and then you’ll go out and verify.” The bamboo pole began chanting an incantation, “Mighty god of darkness, your servant humbly requests you, become an insatiable devourer. For this, I willingly offer my soul.”

Though I was ignorant, I could feel that his incantation used dark magic. I loudly yelled in surprise, “Magic race!”

A black shadow emerged from behind the Bamboo Pole and came flying at me. I immediately cast Brilliant Empire trying to meet his attack. But something unexpected happened. The black shadow did not engage with Brilliant Empire but rather turned into a large cover, gathering Brilliant Empire’s pillar of light and trapping it within. I lost control over my spell, and soon the light element within the black cover gradually faded away.

Chapter 5 – Successful Escape

So powerful! Darkness magic is actually so powerful! They’re of the demon race, so they have a hatred for humanity carved in their bones and engraved in their hearts. How could they possibly spare me? In the first place, I have never encountered them before so I didn’t know how to deal with darkness magic. This won’t do, I need to run away. Safety is the most important after all. I can think of a method to deal with them in the future. I took advantage of the fact that the darkness magic was still covering up my Brilliant Empire to quickly use a short range teleportation to leave the site. I picked a direction and did my best to flee.

In fact, I didn’t need to be so anxious about escaping. They didn’t chase me at all. Even though that bamboo pole counteracted my Brilliant Empire, it still consumed a lot of power. Darkness magic and light magic are mutually restrictive after all. In the first place, he didn’t have any advantages at all.
After counteracting the Brilliant Empire’s energy, the bamboo pole took a deep breath. “That light magic was very powerful but he also knows spatial magic. It seems that it will be impossible to chase him. He’s so young yet he has so much strength. Ah. Princess, it seems that you still  can’t  compare with him.”

“Teacher, how are you? Don’t tell me…. Even you can’t deal with him? Is he actually that powerful?” The beautiful lady quickly went over to assist the bamboo pole. She had said that since she was unconvinced.

“Ah, Princess. If what that youngster said just now is true, then our demon race is in danger.” Sure enough, they are of the demon race. “Their light magic is something we haven’t faced for a long time. Its power is extraordinarily strong. It was clear that he hadn’t used all of his strength yet. Although he can’t be considered my match at the moment, in a few years he will surely surpass me. He also know that the demon race has invaded humanity so he will certainly take appropriate
measures. It seems that we will have to temporarily stop our invasion of humanity. We will have to make clear the strength of humanity first before we can continue with our plans.”

“Okay. I will listen to you. Then are we still going to the kingdom of Aixia?”

“We’re still going. However, all of you should go ahead and find a place to set up first. I must return to our country and report the situation to His Majesty first. I’ll ask His Majesty whether or not we will alter our plans.”

“Good. Then we will immediately set off.” The beautiful lady turned towards the eight maids and said. “How are your conditions? Quickly change into good clothes. We’re setting of
now. Once we’ve arrived at the city walls, we’ll look for a place to rest and heal.”

Back to me. After running for who knows how long, I was gasping for breath. Ah. I’m so tired. I turned my head around as I ran and saw that there wasn’t anyone chasing after me. There shouldn’t be any problems if I stop running then. I found a shady tree and sat down before wiping away the sweat on my forehead. What did those demon race people come here to do? What kind of bad luck do I have to let me run into them? My luck is really bad today. Right after setting off on my journey I have already met such a powerful enemy. It’s a good thing I can run away quickly. I still felt a lingering fear when recalling the black cover the bamboo pole used on me.

However, the leader of those girls was simply too beautiful. Does the demon race have many beautiful women? I originally thought those two elusive sisters were already very beautiful women, but this demon race women is even more beautiful! I can’t help but shake my head. Although my heart has never
raced for any women before, this time I’m a bit tempted. But she’s a bit too fierce. When she saw me, she didn’t just want to beat me, she also wanted to kill me. If I married her in the future, then wouldn’t my life be awfully miserable? A few passionate words and she’ll give me her blade. It’s already over. It seems that all beautiful women are fierce. In the future, it’ll be fine if I just find an ordinary looking girl to be my wife. It’s enough to just look at beautiful women.

I truly don’t know what our protagonist is  thinking.  Right now he is continuously thinking about the issue concerning them and himself. He was unexpectedly thinking about how the demon race passed through the Si Te Lun stronghold and arrived at the Tian Wu continent. What is their purpose?

With my body exhausted and my spirit drained, I unconsciously fell asleep in the shade.

I slept very well, and I woke up freezing. I opened my eyes and saw that it was already night. My body was wet with dew and sweat; I felt unbearably sticky. I wanted to immediately find a place to wash.

Where is this? There seems to be light a small distance away. It looked like a village. Without any delay, I immediately ran toward it.

I walked close and carefully looked. As expected, it is a village, a very small village. Probably about only twenty households. I walked toward to the largest house and knocked on the door, “Is anyone there?”
An old voice passed through the door, “Who is it?”

“Hello, sir. I am a traveler. On a whim, I came here first. Could you let me stay here for the night? I will leave tomorrow, thank you.”

After a moment, the door opened. It was a wrinkly old grandpa. After he spent a moment examining me head from toe, he said, “Come in.”

“Thank you.” I answered at once and then followed the old man into the house. The house had about three different rooms. The living room was very simple; it only had a bench, a small table, a small stool, and a few domestic necessities.

The old man poured a glass of water for me. I immediately answered, “Thank You.”

“You don’t have to be so polite. Where did you come from, young man?” The old man asked with a smile.

“I came from the city of SenKe. I wanted to take a tour around the Xiuda Kingdom.” I didn’t conceal anything with  these words. This isn’t a secret that I have to hide.

“Ah SenKe, that’s the second largest city. I visited there when
I was young. Oh that’s right, you still haven’t ate. Look at me, old and senile. I’ll go get you something to eat.”

I was indeed very hungry, I cannot be polite about this, “In that case, I will trouble you.” Actually, in my mind I still wanted to say, ‘You should bring more, I eat a lot.’

I found a basin, and I scooped up a bit of water from the yard’s water jar and washed my face. As expected, it was very refreshing. After I finish eating, I’ll give myself a good wash.

“Time to eat, young man.” The old man called from within the room.

“I’m coming.” When I entered the room again, the small table already held many dishes on top of it, including a  bamboo basket filled with steaming sweet potato and corn. There was also a bowl of fragrant sweet potato congee. This is great. Smelling the fragrant aromas of the meals, I felt like I was eat.

“Let’s sit down and eat. Rural folk like me  don’t  have anything good to treat guests with.”

“This is already very good. At home, I always eat like this.” I could no longer help it. I threw myself at the table’s various foods and with all my might, tried to stuff it all in my stomach. The old man watched me eat with a knowing smile.
With the battle concluded, I had cleared off all the food. I patted my bulging belly, satisfyingly said, “I’m very full,  I haven’t eaten this much ever since I left home.  Thank  you truly.”

The old man rose and cleaned the battlefield. I also quickly set to the task. Letting me wolf down so much food, how could I possibly push the cleanup onto someone else. The old man didn’t bother being polite and told me where the kitchen was.

Chapter 6 – Mercenary Guild

Finished cleaning, I went back to the living room. The old man seemed to be waiting for me, “We’re done. Let me bring you to where you’ll be sleeping.”

“Young man, you’ll be sleeping here. Straight and simple, put it together. Ah that’s right, I still don’t know your name. This old name is called Lei Jie. You can call me uncle. I haven’t married, I’ve been by myself.”

“Here is good. Uncle, my name is Zhang Gong. Thank you.”

I sat on the bed and chatted with uncle. I heard him say we were near the Aixia kingdom’s border. In the past, this place
had once belonged to the Kingdom of Xiuda. The folk on this side are sincere and down to earth, and they all treated their guests well. After all, they are at the border, there aren’t that many people who can use magic here. He also said that if I still wanted to go to the Xiuda Kingdom, I must be careful. Recently, it hadn’t been very peaceful and secure over there. At  our border, there are a few bandits that come and go as a result of our friendly relations. The territory’s sovereignty is a sensitive topic, therefore it wasn’t properly guarded.

Hearing him talk about this location, I couldn’t help but ask, “Then currently, is it impossible to go over there?”

“No, everything is ordinary at our border city. Polima city assembled a large group of people and hired a few mercenaries as escorts. With this, it’s already much safer.”
“Oh, Then I should go to Polima.” Haha, there was still such a great thing. I should try out becoming a mercenary. I might even make some pocket money, hehe.

That uncle had clearly misunderstood my meaning, “Right, since you want to go to the Xiuda Kingdom, it is better to travel from that place. Going together with merchants will also be much safer.”

Without needing to explain, I asked where I could wash. He told me there was a brook behind the village I could bathe in.

I used the clear and cold river water to wash the dirt and fatigue. So comfortable. After washing, my body felt indescribably refreshed. From the dimensional storage I took
out a set of clean clothes, and changed into them. Then I took the washed clean clothes and returned to that uncle’s house.

I lied down on the bed, thinking about today’s events. Although I said that from now on I wouldn’t take a beautiful woman as a wife, their fairy-like appearance continuously swam in my mind, and I dazingly entered slumberland.

At dawn, I had finished eating breakfast with uncle and we said our goodbyes. According to his directions, I went forward to Polima city.

Perhaps it is because merchants from both countries pass through here, even though it was a border town, Polima was a very prosperous city. The main street was bustling with
activity. All kinds of shops were dazzlingly light up like glittering jewels. I inquired the location of the mercenary guild from a passerby.

The mercenary guild’s sign is a diamond coin with sword passing diagonally through it. I suppose the idea behind it was that mercenaries used their own skill to get their coin.

Walking through the mercenary guild’s entrance, I faced  a very large hall. The hall had various sorts of desks all around. At center of the hall were many differently dressed people. There were those who wore warrior’s clothing, mage’s clothing, and there were even a few sharp eared elves and a few short, rugged dwarves. Elves and dwarves are both classified as minorities, both are peaceful races. Elves are born archers, possessing keen senses and impressive eyesight and capable of learning any natural magic. Dwarves are powerful warriors and very skilled craftsmen. A great many high quality weapons were forged by them.

I walked to what I believed to the front desk, and inquired to the young lady behind it, “Excuse me, where could I receive mercenary missions?”

The service lady took a glance at me. Seeing that I wore only ordinary clothing, she obviously wasn’t very enthusiastic. She lazily said, “First go to the left over there and get a form and apply to become a mercenary. After that, you will get a mercenary’s mission card. Then you can go to the right and receive missions.”

“Oh, Thanks.” I answered quickly and took a form. The asked for name and surname, profession, degree of ability and so-on. On the form, for ability, I put that I was a great mage. When I gave the registry form to service lady, she said with surprise, “You’re a great mage?”

“That’s right, what’s the matter?” I, who diligently studied at royal magic academy for a very long time, naturally didn’t know that great mages were uncommon.

“Do you have identification from the magic union?”

“Of course I do.” I took a magic union capability card from my bosom. (A mage’s ability and experience are all verified and confirmed within the magic union’s record card. Everyone had their own unique magic card.)
That service lady anxiously authenticated it for  a  moment. She read it and mumbled: “Zhang Gong Wei, graduated from the Royal Intermediate Magic Academy, representative of his year. As a result of his exceptionally outstanding achievements at the academy, he was exempt from testing and awarded with the title of great mage. Wow! You’re a great mage  that graduated from the Royal Magic Academy?”

Because of her voice was relatively loud, everyone present had heard. At the time, I became everyone’s focus and felt somewhat embarrassed.

“That’s right, what’s the matter? Can I become a mercenary or not?”
Distracted for a moment, she promptly said, “You can, of course you can. Because you’re a great mage, you are directly promoted to a rank C mercenary. You can accept any missions you believe you are capable of.”

“Rank C Mercenary? Mercenaries are ranked?” I asked with doubt.

She smiled at me, I suppose it because I was ignorant and inexperienced. “Naturally, Mercenaries have high to low ranks from S, A, B, C, D, E, F, to G. What missions a mercenary can accept depends on their rank. They are promoted in accordance to the difficulty and quantity of their completed missions.”

“Oh, so it’s like that, thank you.” I took the mercenary card
that she handed to me, and then I walked to the desk on the right to look for a mission that went to Xiuda.

The service staff at the desk to the right knew that I was a great mage and treated me with an exceptionally friendly attitude. Seeing me walk over, they approached me and asked, “What rank of mission would you like to receive?”

“The rank doesn’t matter. What matters is if it goes to the Xiuda Kingdom. I want to travel there, so a mission heading there would be best.”

“Wait one moment, sir. I’ll help you check.”

While she was searching, I was looking at the top tile of the mission board and it was unexpectedly the first assignment that Teacher Di had given me, to acquire Holy Sword, the weapon that the God of Creation had once used. Rank SSS, Ah, there are three S’s! It is clearly going to be very difficult. The reward was also extraordinarily high, to go so far as to offer a hundred thousand diamond coins. I reckon that is about how much my country receives from taxes annually.

Chapter 7 – Eating And Eating

I asked the service lady: “The reward for these three S rank missions are so big, who could afford this?”

This time not only did she laugh at me, but all the people around me looked at me as if I was an idiot. What are they looking at? It’s just that I don’t know since it’s my first time out in the world. I’ll just ignore them then.

“Since the beginning of the Mercenary guilds, this mission has had the highest rank. It’s already been like this for over 1000 years. If someone actually managed to complete this mission, they can just go to the capital and claim this reward. The power of the divine artifact will be even greater if it recognizes its master.
(Teacher Di has already told me that even if I happen to find a divine artifact, I won’t necessarily be able to obtain it. I must obtain the divine artifacts approval first before I can attain it. This much I already know.)

“Oh. So it’s actually like this. Have you found the mission I wanted yet?” With so many people staring at me, I really want to leave at once.

“Here’s a mission that suits you quite well. It’s a B rank mission. The mission is to escort a merchant to the capital of the Xiuda kingdom, Xiuda City. The reward for this mission is 300 diamond coins. However, this type of mission is  usually accepted by a whole mercenary company. Will you be fine by yourself?”

“Ah. How many people are there in a mercenary company?” It would be better to find some other people to accept this mission with. Safety is the most important thing after all.

“It’s not exact, but the minimum is around ten people.”

I surveyed my surroundings then abruptly shouted: “Any mercenary groups that want to take this mission, I  want  to join.” This truly is clever of me. If I don’t want to  do  this mission by myself, then I can just find a mercenary company to join. How wonderful, I probably won’t meet any bandits and even if I do, they’ll take care of it. I’ll certainly be safe this way. I truly am too clever.

While I was being infatuated with my cleverness, I heard a loud voice. “Then you can join us since we’re  also  thinking about taking this mission.”
Ah, what a loud voice! It frightened me just now. I turned my head to look at the owner of the voice. Waa! He’s so huge! His height is over 2 meters and a foot! He had a wild beard on his face and he was carrying a huge axe on his back. With a single look I could tell that he had the strength of one who trains in martial skills.

“Hello, you guys are a mercenary company?” I courteously asked.

“Ah, yes that’s right. We’re the famous  Holy  Sword Mercenary Company.” The huge person said in  a straightforward manner.

“How many people are in your group?”

“We have about 20 people in our company but they’re all martial practitioners. We’re from the Xiuda kingdom so we wanted to take this mission as we could use it to go home conveniently. We’re lacking a mage. So how about it? Do you want to join us?”

20 people. That’s not a small number, but I don’t know how their strength is. Looking at his appearance, I estimated that he if he had Earth Battle Spirit, it would be quite good.

“Then what warrior rank are you right now?”
“Me? I’m on the verge of reaching the level where I can get the authentication of a knight. Most of the people in the company are intermediate rank warriors.” (An intermediate warrior is equivalent to an intermediate mage.)

“Oh. So that is to say you’re an advanced warrior. That’s fine then. I wish to join your ranks until we finish this mission. However, I have a few conditions I hope you can agree to.” Although their strength isn’t that powerful, I really like this big guy.

The big guy blanked out for a moment. “What conditions?”

I muttered to myself before saying: “There are three conditions. Number one: I want you guys to prepare a carriage
for me during the journey since I’m a mage so I don’t have much physical strength. Number two: I won’t be considered to be part of your mercenary company but simply as an ally. I don’t want you guys to command me. Naturally, I will dispose of any dangers. Number three: I want a tenth of the reward money.”

The first two conditions were a bit harsh, but the  last condition was actually advantageous to them. The big guy thought about it for a bit before agreeing to them, he only needs a passable carriage and it’ll be done. What would I do with all this money? It would just be pocket change to me. What’s more, they have to split it among twenty people. If I asked for more they wouldn’t make much profit. I’m still outstandingly kind and honest after all.

After accepting the mission and deciding on when we would assemble, we left the Mercenary Guild. First off, I want to go find a good restaurant to comfort my stomach. Apart from that time I ate my fill at that uncle’s house, I’ve been eating rations for the rest of the journey. My stomach nearly revolted after
that.

After exiting the Mercenaries Guild and walking quite a bit, I saw a restaurant with a big sign called the Signature Tavern.” What an interesting name. I’ll eat here then.

As soon as I entered the restaurant, a server came over to welcome me. “Hello Mister. May I ask how many people are with you?”

“It’s just me. Please give me a more peaceful area.”
“Okay then. The second floor is a bit more peaceful. I’ll bring you over then.” I followed the server to the second floor then sat down at a table beside the window. As expected, it’s really peaceful here. Maybe it’s because it isn’t dinner time yet, but there was only a sparse number of people.

“What kind of special dishes do you guys have here?” I was already a bit impatient, since my stomach wouldn’t wait for them. It continued to protest.

“Our specialty here is stir-fried duck hearts, dong po pork…” He continuously listed off ten different dishes. They all sounded quite good. I’m already beginning to drool.

“It’s fine now. You don’t need to continue. The dishes you
said just now, bring me all of them. I also want ten steamed buns and a bowl of porridge. Hurry up.”

“Can you eat this much?” The skeptical server has met the Rice Bucket.

“Just hurry up and do it. What are you asking so many questions for? It’s not like I’m not paying for it.”

After driving away the server, I was already beginning to anticipate my delicacies. They were really fast. In not too long, my table was filled with an incomparable feast. (There wasn’t any wine. I haven’t started drinking yet. I’ll speak about it when I have the change in the future.) My mouth suddenly opened wide. I took the chopsticks and began my struggle.

My speed isn’t that slow. It only took me about one hour to finish it. Actually, I didn’t really take my time eating a lot of the dishes. No matter the taste, it just slipped straight into my stomach. Not bad. Truly not bad.

“Server, the bill please.”

The server walked over. “In total that was 3 gold coins and 4 silver coins.

“Oh.” I took out the amethyst card from my chest pocket and
gave it to him. “Will the card be fine?”

When the server saw me take out an amethyst card, his face had a look of reverence on it. “Please wait a moment. I’ll go look for my boss.”

In order to use the card, he needs to find the boss. So troublesome. Forget about it. I’ll just wait then. In any case, I sat there motionlessly.

Chapter 8 – Encountering Bandits

A short and stout middle aged man walked over, “Hello sir, was it you that wanted to use the amethyst card to pay the bill?”

“That’s right. What’s the matter?” I lazily answered. I’ve eaten my fill, right now my greatest concern was going to bed.

“May I ask you what your profession is?” The middle aged man asked with a smile.

“I am a mage. What does this have to do with the meal? Let me pay the bill immediately, I want to go.”

“It’s like this, the reason why we are called Signature tavern is because every person that eats here either has great ability or a position in society. So long as you write your signature here, you can eat a meal for free.”

“So there was such a good thing. Then I’ll give you my autograph.” Eat a meal without paying, not bad.

“Then what is your mage rank?”

I took out my magic union identification card, “Great Mage, is
this a high enough rank?”

The shop keeper’s face showed a pleasantly surprised smile, “That is high enough. Without doubt.  Then  I  will inconvenience you.”

With just a casual signature on the names of four delicious dishes, I was excused from paying for several gold coins worth of food. It seems that the magic identification card has it uses, not bad.

Later generations testified to the shop owner’s wisdom, for the Child of Light’s autograph was later auctioned off for 20,000 diamond coins.

I randomly picked a hotel to stay the night. Tomorrow morning, I’ll go to the east city gate. That was where I made an appointment with the strong man yesterday.

There were a truly great amount of people and great many carriages parked on the roadside. I suppose this is the caravan I’m supposed to escort. Isn’t that the strong man? From a glance, he looked like he was chatting with a few merchants.

“Hi, I’ve come. When are we leaving?”
“Ah, you came. Let me introduce you. This is the leader of the caravan we are escorting, Mr. Li Ci Meng.” He said pointing at a stout merchant. “This person is a great mage. Ah that’s right. I still don’t know your name. My name is Long Meng Hai.”

“My name is Zhang Gong Wei. Greetings everyone, I am honored to be escorting you all with Long Meng.”

Mr. Meng looked at me be doubt, “You are a great mage?”

“That’s right, what? Not convinced? Oh great light elements, heed my call, friends. Congregate in front of me, become a holy light annihilating everything.” I only displayed my  own strength, so that I could take it easy during the journey.

Following my incantation, my body suddenly dispatched a dazzling white light pushing away everyone within five meters of me.

“If any of you have the slightest knowledge of magic, you should that was a rank six spell.” My voice transmitted from within the Holy Light.

My powerful spell caught the interest of everyone present, and they all gasped with surprise. I withdrew my holy light, “With this you should be convinced.”
As expected of a merchant, Mr. Meng immediately  walked over with a smile across his face, “Excuse us, we shouldn’t have doubted you, great mage. With you on this journey, our safety is guaranteed.

Long Meng also walked over. A moment ago when I released the power of Holy Light, he hadn’t been able to resist even the slightest. He said ashamedly, “To tell the truth, I had also doubted your abilities at the beginning. Now I know how silly I was. In this escort mission, my mercenary company and I have decided to listen to your orders.

With everyone flattering me, I got a bit carried away. “You don’t have to do that. I just didn’t want everyone to think I was only here for food, hehe. You’ll still be in charge, I don’t want to. If something happens, it will be fine to just call for me.”
Like that, the journey had started with me and Long Meng’s mercenary company escorting about a hundred merchant carriages.

Because I had displayed my strength, everyone had treated me with admiration, letting ride in the most luxurious carriage and receiving the best rations during meal time. I also became a freeloader. It seemed that magic was truly not widely learned. Knowing magic had many benefits, not only having to not pay for food at a restaurant but I can also freeload off of the mercenaries, haha.

My carriage is at the center of the caravan. It is said so that I could look after the entire caravan from front to end. Just when I was about to fall asleep, someone had shook me awake. It was Long Meng. He looked exhausted, his brow beaded with sweat.
“What’s the matter?” I lazily asked.

“It’s bad. It seems we’ve come across bandits.” Long Meng said nervously.

“That’s not possible. There are people that dare to rob such a large caravan?” In my mind, I imagined about twenty to thirty bandits.

“We have a large amount of men? Why don’t you go out and take a look?” Long Meng was clearly a bit nervous.
It seemed somewhat amiss, I dropped from the carriage, and was stunned by the situation before me. Now I knew why Long Meng had sweated so much, because I had also broke a cold sweat.

On top of the hills, I saw group of more than three hundred men before me. Such a large bandit group, how did I end up with such terrible luck? I originally believed I could comfortably complete this mission, but it seems this  time there’s going to be a bit of trouble.

Long Meng’s mercenary company and I came together to the front. The bandit group had arrived in front of us in a flash, and scattered in every direction, creating an impenetrable encirclement.
“Tell your leader to come out and answer.” A  bandit arrogantly yelled.

Long Meng, Mr. Meng, and I all looked at each other, who will go? They suddenly pushed me out. This, this is too unjust! But I already came out. Let’s take a look. Honestly, to run away by myself is unacceptable. It’s possible to flee but I’m not that afraid. I walked forward a few steps.

“May I ask how we may help all of you gentlemen?” After I asked, the bandits immediately gave an  arrogant,  heartily laugh.

“Who do you think we are? Leave all of your  belongings behind at once and I, your father, will release you. Or else,
hehe.” Their black battle armored boss said loudly.

“Elder brothers, we all aren’t that easy. Won’t you let us go?” I pleaded.

“Let you go? We waited a month with great difficulty for an attractive, wealthy target and you want us to let you go? What a delusion.”

It looks like it’ll be impossible to pass. I was suddenly hit with a bright idea, and recalled what Teacher Di and I had discussed. The people of the Xiuda Kingdom truly value face, especially the pride of a knight. It seemed I can exploit this.

“Excuse me, you, leader, are you a knight?” My words were hard and firm, piercing through the leader’s black battle armor.

Before he replied, a bandit viciously said, “Of course. Our boss is a heaven knight.” That leader wore an obviously proud appearance. Not bad, they fell into my trap.

Chapter 9 – Bandit Leader’s Charge

“Then how about we make a bet?”

“What sort of bet?” He obviously didn’t put me in his eyes.

I pretended to think for a bit, “Let’s just bet you won’t be able to beat me.” My words immediately made all the bandits burst out in wild laughter, apart from the silent bandit  standing beside the bandit chief.

The chief bandit didn’t even stop to think and immediately replied: “Ok. I’ll bet with you. But we won’t just be betting on all of your merchandise, we’ll also be betting the lives of everyone in your party. You still want to bet?” It seems he
wasn’t foolish, to make use of my group.

Now I’m put into a difficult position, I have to take into consideration the lives of several hundred people. “Please let us discuss this for a moment.”

I returned to our party, “You all heard my conversation with the chief bandit, what do you guys think?”

Long Meng excitedly said: “I hand my life over to you, Great Mage, I’m sure you can win against him. How about it brothers?” All the mercenaries under Long Meng shouted in uniform: “We’ll bet.” A proper group of brave men.

I turned to the caravan leader, Mr. Meng, “What about you guys, are you willing to put your lives in my hands?”

Mr. Meng was very hesitant, “Can you let me discuss it more with that chief bandit?” Everyone has the right make their own choices. Although Long Meng’s mercenaries were glaring  at him, I didn’t express anything, “Alright, you  can  try  to negotiate again.”

I accompanied Mr. Meng to the bandits, Mr. Meng very politely said, “If us merchants don’t participate in this bet, can you let us just give you the merchandise and not die?”
The chief bandit impatiently said, “Fine, you are so troublesome. Quickly decide what you’re going to do. Originally, we could easily capture you guys. We just agreed to your request to let you guys accept defeat. I’m not going to be so polite anymore if you don’t decide soon.”

Mr. Meng pondered for a bit. First he helpless said to me: “I have to insure everyone’s safety. I hope you can understand.” Then he turned to the chief bandit: “We are willing to hand over all the merchandise.”

I silently sighed. Originally, there was an opportunity to withdraw without loss. But now I’d rather not fight, as there’s no longer any reason to. However spoken words are like spilled water, they can no longer be taken back.
Seeing the chief bandit’s pleased look, I, who is  rarely angered, was somewhat upset. First I calmly said to Mr. Meng, “Since you do not trust me, then from now on I along with Long Meng’s mercenary company will hereby end our employment under you.” Mr. Meng shook his head and went back sighing. It seems that he was going to prepare his goods for delivery.

“I represent myself and these twenty brothers of mine in an exchange of pointers with you. If I win, you let us go. If I lose, our lives are yours.” I said resolutely with gritted teeth. With my strength, I believed that there was no way I could lose against a Heaven Knight.

“Good. Boy, you have courage. Come!”
All of the bandits went out, leaving a large, empty expanse. It seems that the people of Xiuda greatly care about the fair nature of an exchange of pointers. Long Meng’s company were also in the surrounding encirclement, giving me confidence. Those merchants were looking from the distance, waiting for  our match to end to hand over their goods.

I gave the brothers in Long Meng’s mercenary company a confidence smile, and loudly said, “Brothers, believe in me, I will definitely bring everyone out of this troubling situation.

At the center of the site, the bandit leader and I stood face to face. I calmly threw off my outer robe and waved  my  right hand, “Come, dimensional storage.”
“Boy, you are a mage. Then you certainly won’t use a horse. I will not use one either. Let us immediately start this match.” It seems this bandit is truly worthy of being considered a heaven knight; he truly has a knightly demeanor.

From the dimensional pocket, I took out my Light God’s Robe and wore it. After all, I am bearing the lives of tens of people. I must be cautious. Wearing the Light God’s Robe, I immediately gained much spirit power. I cast several  defensive enchantments on myself. “Come, let me experience this heaven knight’s strength.”

The bandit wildly laughed, drew his sword, and flew straight towards me. So fast, I only saw a dim shadow for a flash of a moment, and he had arrived in front of me, in one blur, chopping at my shoulder.
He is truly fast, so fast that I don’t even have enough time to teleport. I waved my right hand and brilliant rays of light came forth to obstruct him.

The bandit stopped for a moment. “Are you a mage or a warrior? How come you have Heaven Battle Spirit?”

“I’m not using battle spirit. This is just another method of using magic.” This is my real strength. Right now I could even cast some rudimentary spells without chanting. I only need to will it then the light elements will congregate into the result I want. This took me three years to  comprehend.  Although there’s still a gap between me and Teacher Di, my power is unexpectedly similar to using battle spirit. At the moment, the bandit wasn’t attacking me at all since I was simply too great. Even though I managed to block his attack earlier, my whole right side is numb now. After all, fighting each other  like soldiers with short weaponry certainly isn’t a mage’s strong points. I won’t give him this sort of opportunity again.

Using teleportation, I moved out of his range. It seems like I’ll have to use some stronger spells since his battle spirit is actually so powerful. His probing attack just now nearly injured me, if he had used all his strength I would have been unable to resist. I continuously used teleportation to change my position. He’s actually really quick as he was only a bit slower than me while I was using teleportation magic. I’m afraid he’ll cut me down if I stop. This situation can’t continue on.

I dodged to the side and starting chanting an incantation. My hands started to emit a faint white light. The radiance grew stronger. This is a different spell than the one I had just used. This is my improved Light Severing Sword. With a wave of my hand, I can control my magic, using it to directly attack. It is a rank 6 spell, and its single target attack power is exceptionally strong. It is greatly suited to this situation. If Brilliant Empire isn’t necessary able to hit him because of his speed, and area attacks too large are spread too thin to be able to harm him, then currently, I can only use Light Severing Sword and stake it all.

I suddenly stopped and turned around with a white light. He immediately used a battle spirit movement technique and slashed at me with his knight swords that were emitting the same white light. I willed my magic to block it. “That’s right! Don’t run away. It’s isn’t satisfying if you run away.”

“Fine then. I’ll give something satisfying.” Fast as lightning, I shot one Light Severing Sword after another at him. In return, he brandished his knight’s sword to block them. Although I was unable to injure him, he was also unable to attack me. Now we’ll see who lasts longer, my magic power or his battle spirit.

Chapter 10 – The Formidable Xiao Jin

The whole area we were fighting in was filled to the brim with my magic and his battle spirit. I secretly complained within my heart, why did I have to encounter such a powerful  bandit? Don’t tell me…. Are all the people of Xiuda are this strong? That’s too scary to imagine…

His battle spirit seemed to gradually dwindle, it seems that this was more than he could handle. I finally saw a ray of hope. Even though I used up a lot of magic power, I could still sustain this. Immediately, I took advantage of this opportunity and accelerated my attacks. My efforts weren’t in vain. He was careless and got hit in the shoulder. He was sent flying quite a far distance. The power of a rank 6 attack spell is truly frightening. Even if he had battle spirit protecting his body, I don’t think he would get off with light injuries.

I stopped my magical assault since I knew that an exchange between knights stops when the opponent is unable to fight
back anymore. Since he has his grace, why can’t I also act like a knight?

After he got up from the ground, I saw that his left shoulder was somewhat unnatural. He gave me an eccentric laugh and roughly said: “Brat, I didn’t expect you to be this strong. It’s admirable that at such a young age you have already reached this level. Regardless of the outcome of this exchange,  I’ll release you guys. Actually, I knew that if you guys truly wanted to run, we wouldn’t be able to stop you at all. But you stayed behind for your friends. I can really admire this as a  fellow man.”

Regardless of the outcome? What does that mean? Could it be that he still has enough strength to strike back? I indifferently replied: “Then I’ll thank you first. I also admire your chivalrous spirit.” These were my heartfelt words.

As he brushed off the dirt on him, he said: “I’ll let you see my true strength. Come out, War Tiger.” In the wake of his words, a big brightly colored fierce tiger came out with a majestic roar. “This is my magical beast, War Tiger. You can also summon your magical beast, then we can fight each other with all of our strength. I haven’t enjoyed myself for so long. War Tiger, fusion.” The War Tiger gave out a long roar before charging into the bandit. In a flash, the man and tiger fused into one. On his body appeared some tiger striped armor. It covered up all the important parts of his body, in total covering about 60% of his body. Even on his knight’s sword appeared some stripes. His hair was let down magnificently. This imposing manner of his gave me a sense of being overwhelmed.

Wa! This is the armor of a successful fusion between a warrior and his magical beast! Teacher Di told me before that  a warrior’s magical beast is similar to a mage’s magical  beast. They both aid their master to attack and defend. However, if the magical beast reaches rank 7 and the master has Heaven Battle Spirit, it can fuse with the master and become armor. This will also increase the master’s attack abilities. In comparison to
individual combat, this way was much more powerful. Being able to create armor by fusing with his magical beast means that he’s already approaching the level of a Radiant Knight. (Equivalent to a magister)

“Let me experience your magical beast too.”

It seems that I’ll lose if I don’t let Xiao Jin out to fight with me. I still haven’t pieced myself together from the shadow of Xiao Jin’s last battle. I’ll try it out and let Xiao Jin out. It’s different from those days. Xiao Jin shouldn’t be defeated that easily now. “Come out Xiao Jin.” In a flash of golden light, Xiao Jin’s huge body appeared and nestled up against my side.

It was clear that Xiao Jin’s appearance gave him a fright. He
said in surprise: “Ah! What kind of magical beast are you? You’re so big.”

The current Xiao jin was over 10 meters long and from head to toe he was covered in white scales with three golden stripes flickering with light. The horn on his head has also grown a lot and the large wings on his back were only slightly shorter in length than a person’s height. On his abdomen five sharp claws scratched the ground. He looked extremely domineering.

I discovered that Xiao Jin didn’t want to fight at all. He gave out a cheerful roar since he hadn’t been outside for so long. It might be that he thought I brought him out to play. It wasn’t until I told him we had enemies through telepathy that he nervously shook his adorable head to look around us. He sensed that only the bandit’s there were a threat to me and asked telepathically: “Are these the enemies?” I gave him an affirmative response.

Unexpectedly, Xiao Jin suddenly had the imposing manner of a king and began to ferociously glare at the opposing bandits. All of his scales were erect and he even unfurled his wings and waved them, causing a small sandstorm. This frighteningly imposing manner caused all of the surrounding bandits to scatter in all directions as they shouted: “Monster!”

“Stop, stop. I don’t want to battle anymore.” From within the sandstorm came the bandit’s voice.

I promptly told Xiao Jin to stop, but within my heart, I couldn’t help but be baffled by the bandit. Neither me nor Xiao Jin have attacked him yet he had already surrendered.
“Damn. What kind of magical beast is this? It’s way too terrifying. My War Tiger already seems to be afraid of him and wants to separate from my body. I admit defeat so hurry up and recall him.” It turns out that when the bandit confronted Xiao Jin, he already knew that he was unable to contend with me. So he took the initiative to admit defeat.

Indeed, Xiao Jin is so strong that even I can’t believe it. I know that right now I’m absolutely not Xiao Jin’s opponent. Especially considering his imposing manner of a king just now. I was flabbergasted, was this actually my Xiao Jin who was so cute and adorable before?

Xiao Jin unwillingly returned to my body. I suddenly  felt weak. I have consumed a lot of magic power. Even though I wasted a lot of magic power during the exchange of pointers, summoning Xiao Jin also consumed a lot due to how powerful he is. (I supply him with all of his energy.) He didn’t attack otherwise I would have collapsed. It seems like I still have long way to go. If in the future me and Xiao Jin are able to display
our full powers simultaneously, I estimate that our strengths wouldn’t be too far off from a legendary Grand Magister’s.

After the dust had gradually settled, I could see the bandit not far from me standing there while being covered in dirt. He has already recalled his War Tiger. I couldn’t find a single thread of hostility in his gaze as he helplessly looked at me. By relying on Xiao Jin’s formidable power, I’ve beaten him.

Letting out a bitter laugh, he said to me: “I’ve got to say my boy, this magical beast of yours is too abnormal. Ah, how did you find him? I don’t know what sort of breed he is.”

I replied with a smile: “I don’t know what breed he is either. I only know that he’s my best friend. Actually, you didn’t lose at
all. It’s just that your magical beast couldn’t compare to mine. Our strengths are about equally matched.”

I reckon that my words have satisfied his vanity since he couldn’t conceal his excitement. “Alright then. You’re a real brother. We’re friends from now on then!”

Chapter 11 – Having A Bandit As A Friend

The chief bandit cheerfully said: “Alright then brother. You and your friends can go now. I’ll just go and receive the spoils of war now. Haha.”

I really didn’t expect that in the end there would be this sort of result. Simply too dramatic. Unexpectedly, I became friends with the bandit robbing me.

When the caravan leader, Mr. Meng saw that we had turned enemy into friend, his heart felt unwell. Within his heart he was unceasingly scolding himself for having such poor judgement. Without looking at me, he quickly walked over to Long Meng and begged: “Ah, Long Meng. Talk with the Great Mage Zhang Gong to help us by getting these older brothers to let us off. If we lose all of this merchandise, our losses will truly be too big.”

With a disdainful look, Long Meng coldly replied: “Isn’t it too late now? Who told you guys not to trust Zhang Gong? Who is to blame? Blame yourselves. I wouldn’t have any face if I helped you guys to plead.”

“Yes, yes. It’s all because of my poor judgement. I was too selfish. But we, the elderly are above and below are the young. There are a lot of people this time whose loss would be the same as losing their family fortune. I beg of you, help me talk to him.” Mr. Meng was already shedding tears as he said this.”

Even though Long Meng looked the fool on the outside but within, he was extraordinarily kindhearted. After seeing Mr. Meng, a grown man, crying, his heart softened. Helplessly, he said: “Fine then. Don’t be like this. I’ll go and try but I can’t guarantee that Zhang Gong will agree.”

“Thank you, thank you! You truly are a good person!”

I heard their conversation long ago since I was right behind them. I contemplated this for a bit. Ah! It isn’t easy for a merchant to survive either! Forget it. There’s no need to lower myself to their level.

Without even letting Long Meng to open his mouth, I hurriedly said: “Fine then. No need to say anymore Long Meng. I’ll go and try pleading for them.”
I walked over to the bandits that were currently taking inventory of the merchandise and embarrassingly said: “This is really embarrassing. I will have to inconvenience you.”

The Bandit Chief straightforwardly said: “What’s there to feel embarrassed about? If you have something to say then just say it.”

“It’s like this you see. It isn’t easy for these merchants either so would it be possible for you guys to let them off this time? After all, this is the first time I’ve received a mercenary mission so I wouldn’t want to stop midway and pay the fees.”

The Chief Bandit shook his head and awkwardly said: “I’m afraid that it’s impossible for us to spit out that fat meat that’s
already in our mouths. Why do you still want to help them? Didn’t you see the true face of that band of profiteers just now? They don’t trust you at all so why do you still bother  with them?”

While also feeling very awkward, I let out a sigh. “Ah. There’s nothing to be done about it then. First of all, they’re my customers, and second, they also have wives and  children.  I only hope you wouldn’t be too harsh on them. I know that you must have your own difficulties, but everyone have to give themselves a way out.”

The Chief Bandit’s face sank with gloom.  “Are  you threatening me?”
I stared at him in the eye unyieldingly. “Of course I’m not threatening you. I just hope you will agree to me request. In the future I will certainly pay you back the favor.”

Under my resolute gaze, he gradually softened and released a gentle sigh. Helplessly, he said: “I truly can’t say no to you but I really like your character. I can agree to releasing one horse for them, but not the rest. I want half of the merchandise since I have so many brothers following me. I definitely can’t let them return empty-handed. Besides that, I have one more condition.”

His answer was already very satisfying since these unscrupulous merchants should also be taught a lesson. This is the best possible outcome. With a smile, I said: “Then I’ll thank you first. Just tell me what condition you have and I will do my best to satisfy you.”
“My condition is very harsh. Your heart must be prepared. If you can’t do it, then the previous agreement will have been a waste.”

My heart tensed up and I clenched my teeth. “Say it then. I’ll do it if I can.” Will he deliberately, embarrass me? He wouldn’t want me to strip would he…?

Laughingly, he said: “My condition is——” He deliberately drew out this word to cause me to feel suspense. “It’s to invite you to go to our mountain stronghold as a guest.”

After hearing his words, it was like unloading a ball of gas. I became soft and nearly fell collapsed onto the ground. I collapsed. I violently collapsed. Ah! How can this be considered
a condition? It’s too simple!

I said with a weak voice: “Boss, I’ll do it.”

Flabbergasted, he replied: “What? You don’t wish to go to our place as a guest? Then forget about it. I’ll  cancel  the agreement.”

I hastily replied: “No no no. I want to go. I want to go see what it’s like at your place. Are you trying to scare me to death?”
Abruptly, he gave out a hearty laugh of rejoice. “Haha! You’ve been fooled by me. This is my revenge.

I was speechless.

With the Chief Bandit’s promise, the crowd of bandits returned half of the merchandise to the merchants. These profiteering merchants thanked me until I grew annoyed.  I don’t care about them at all. I told Long Meng the Chief Bandit’s condition and told them to escort the caravan to Xiuda first. I need to go to the bandit’s nest for a few days as a guest after all.

Initially, Long Meng was firmly opposed to this but after my unceasing explanations of how the Chief Bandit definitely won’t harm me, he finally agreed. He said he definitely follow me in
the future, so I must arrive at Xiuda safely. I accidentally received so many little brothers. I also have some means. I told him we would speak of this in the future when I arrive in Xiuda and find them.

After watching the walk away, I turned around and looked at the Chief Bandit. I said with a smile: “Boss, let us go then. Oh, that’s right! I still don’t know your name. My name is Zhang Gong Wei. I’m 16 but I’ll be turning 17 this year.”

“Everyone calls me Zhan Hu so you can call that too. I don’t wish to carry my former name anymore. This year I’m 29 years old so I’m much older than you. Then I’ll be  your  older brother.”
Inwardly I thought, surely he has some  extreme circumstances in his past. It would be best not to touch upon it. I answered: “Of course. It goes without saying that you’re the big brother. Let’s go then. Let me go and see what your nest is like.” While saying this, I made a bandit give me horse before rushing onwards.

“You know the way? It’d be better if I lead the way.” Zhan Hu’s horse was evidently much more excellent. In a moment he already caught up to me and rode besides me.

Their nest is within the mountains of the border  between Aixia and Xiuda. It wouldn’t be accurate to call it a bandit’s nest. It would be better to call it village due to its large scale. Furthermore, Zhan Hu was precisely the  village’s  chief. Whether young or old, when the women and children saw the bandits return with so many valuables they all welcomed the bandits as if they were heroes.

The scale of this bandit village wasn’t small at all. The mountains encircled this small village situated in a depression within the mountains, thus providing a natural  barrier  for them. It was as if the whole village fused together with the surrounding mountains. How verdant and lush. If I didn’t know any better, I would think this was an isolated world.

Chapter 12 – Big Brother Zhan Hu

Zhan Hu and I entered the village. He really is the village’s idol; when someone sees him they always greet him. He also responds to them one by one. He let all of his subordinates return home and brought me to his residence. He lived in a simple, crude reed house in the deepest part of the village. Surrounding it was a very tattered fence.

I said jeeringly, “You should repair this house, otherwise the wind will blow you away together with it.”

He didn’t care about my jeers. My words seemed to evoke a worry on his mind. He murmured, “On the eighth month, a great autumn wind furiously roared and sweeped up my house’s heavy reeds. The reeds flew to the river and scattered throughout. Up high, the winds takes the branches of tall trees. Down below, it creates a whirlwind, hollowing the ground beneath it. Before, I lived a life of luxury; now there is nothing. Contrary, only a simple, basic life is my goal now.”

I patted his shoulder, “It seems that you are also deeply heartbroken by these past events. Can you tell me about it? I am willing to hear you out. Let everything out of your heart, you’ll certainly feel much better.”

He looked at me. His eyes displayed the gaze of an intimate friend, and said boldly with abandon, “Right, continuously stifling my heart’s thoughts have made me feel unwell. Today I will let you hear. Walk, let us enter the house, and talk and drink.”

He had never married and lived by himself. He brought out a jar of wine from who knows where and brought out  a  few simple dishes. “Let’s eat. Little brother, tomorrow I’ll let them give you something a bit better.”

I immediately said, “This is already very good.”

He took out two large wine cups and said, “Come, let’s drink.”

I said embarrassed, “I never drank wine before. How about you drink by yourself?”

“Not drinking is out of the question. Wine is a truly good thing. We men have enough hardships for a lifetime, with no smoking (tobacco), with no drinking, you might as well live life as a dog. Come, drink.”

It was hard to refuse such great hospitality. I wanted to try wine and experience what it tastes like, “Alright, today I will keep your company and drink with you.” I picked up the wine jar and filled our cups to the brim. We raised our cups leveled to each other and drained it in one gulp. ”I respect big brother, respect for finishing first.”

He had a happy appearance and took another drink. “Good, drink to your heart’s content.”

When we drank the wine, I started to feel a bit hot, yet I also smelled a pure, simple fragrance. With it, it isn’t very hard to drink. But the inside of my stomach felt like a fire burning, I felt as if my whole stomach was aflame. My face held a deep red. A good half day later, my energy started to slowly come back.

Zhan Hu laughingly said, “Aren’t you drinking a bit slowly? This wine’s strength cannot be considered weak. Your stomach for liquor will definitely be pretty good in the future. If an average person drank a cup of this wine of mine, they would be on the brink of death.”

With a red face, I said, “Oh, so it turns out to be that kind of wine.” I hurriedly tried the dishes.

After we ate for a while, I asked, “Big Brother, why have you become a bandit? With skill like yours, you should be able to go anywhere and receive great status.”
Zhan Hu sighed, saying, “Little Brother, you wouldn’t know. Before, I was also high spirited like you. I was previously regarded as a genius of the Xiuda Kingdom’s young generation. When I was twenty years old, I had already become a Heaven Knight. At the time, I was a symbol of my family’s glory, what everyone had hoped to accomplish.” He stopped here and drank a large mouthful of wine.

I interrupted saying, “Then what about later?”

He continued, saying, “Later, I joined the army. Because of my outstanding performance, I gained the admiration of everyone. Quickly, I climbed to a position that everyone yearned for even in their dreams. You should know about the Xiuda Kingdom’s trump unit.”
“The Earth Dragon Corps?” I heard Teacher Di talk about it before. If on plain terrain, a single Earth Dragon Legion could easily get rid of any adversary. Earth dragons have extraordinarily strong magic defenses. Unless it comes across exceptionally high rank magic, it would be fundamentally impossible to harm it and its knights. On the East Continents, only the Xiuda Kingdom produced an earth dragon, but the numbers are quite sparse.”

“Right, you’re correct. At the time, among the three Earth Dragon Corps, I was their strongest leader.”

Ah? It turned out that he had once been so formidable. “Then at the time, you were very proud of yourself. What about your earth dragon? I heard when earth dragons recognize a master, it will eternally follow him.”
Zhan Hu continued to pour himself many cups of wine and painfully said, “My earth dragon’s name was Zhan. He was the strongest earth dragon in the Earth Dragon Corps. The greatest reason for I am now like this is because of him. During our first training session, because of my mistake, Xiao Zhan sacrificed his life. He sacrificed his life to save me.” He painfully grabbed the hair on his own head.

I grabbed his hand, and consoled him, “Don’t do that. These matters have already past. There is no use in regretting it now. You must start pulling yourself together.”

Perhaps because my consoling had impacted him, he gradually became tranquil. We continued to drink and chat. He said since Xiao Zhan died, he had never been able to forgive himself. Everyone had blamed him; they all said it was his fault that his precious earth dragon had died. This also caused him to be dismissed from his position as a Corps head. At that time, he had begun to learn to drink alcohol. Every day drunk, every day looking at others with indifference. He couldn’t endure it and
ran away. Without a goal, he wandered aimlessly without direction until he arrived here. Coming here, everyone was pressed to banditry. That is because of Zhan Hu’s skills, it was only natural the people of Village Li would be put to order. But later, because he sympathized with the bandit’s lives and was simultaneous wanting for a home, He had also stayed behind and became their bandit chief.

So it turned out that his past was so complicated. I was deeply moved. I drank a mouthful of wine and said outspokenly, “Big… Big Brother, I greatly admire your character. Hic. How about we become sworn brothers?” My tongue had already become large. Currently the wine had already become sweet. I saw two Zhan Hu’s swaying in my eyes.

Zhan Hu also drank almost as much as I. “Good, good little brother, Big Brother recognizes this little brother. In the future, if anything happens, tell Big Brother. Big Brother will surely help you settle the matter.”

I embraced his broad shoulder and while swaying, I lifted the cup, saying, “Great, for the affections of us as brothers, come, let’s dry these cups.” It was as such, he drank a cup, I drank a cup, taking turns until we both finally completely toppled over.

Ah, my head really hurts. In the morning, I managed to wake up, feeling dizzy and muddle headed. Moreover, with this tremendous head pain.

“Little brother, you’re awake.” Zhan Hu’s voice came over.
“Oh, Big Brother, my head, why does it hurt so much?”

“Haha, yesterday you drank so much, how could your head not hurt?” Zhan Hu said with a smile.

“Then how are you alright?” I wondered.

“I drink every day, I’ve already adapted. Little brother, yesterday you said you wanted us to become sworn brothers. Is that true?”
Sober, I said, “Of course, I would be honored to have an older brother such as yourself.”

Emotionally moved, Zhan Hu said, “Very well, I recognize you as my younger brother. Why don’t you stand, go wash your face and eat something? Then your head won’t hurt.”

Afterwards, it was precisely because of Zhan Hu’s assistance that the Child of Light was able to obtain true  love. Furthermore, Zhan Hu had later become an unforgettably mighty character in history.

Chapter 13 – Exchange Of Skills

Name:Zhan Hu Height:184cm Weight:80kg

Major Magic:N/A Minor Magic:N/A

Magical Beast:War Tiger

Overall Magic Strength:Heaven Knight Magic Control:F
(Grades are divided into S, A, B, C, D, E and F)

Magic Power:F Magic Perception:B Magic Defense:A

Magic Attack:F Speed:A(Unable to fly)

Physical Attacks:A Physical Defense:A Stamina:S

After eating breakfast, me and Zhan Hu climbed a hill to enjoy
the scenery with untroubled hearts. I said: “Big Brother, are you in a better mood now after you spoke the words hidden within your heart?”

In the middle of his laments, Zhan Hu said: “It’s already been so long since I’ve been so satisfied. Now my whole body feels at ease.”

After we laughed together, I inquired: “What kind of battle spirit are you using that’s so powerful?

“My battle spirit has been passed down through my family from generation to generation. It’s called the Ascending Dragon’s Judgment. It’s also what Xiuda’s Royal family cultivates. Since we’re already brothers, I don’t need to conceal
this from you. My father is the younger brother of the current king of Xiuda. The Grand Marshal of the kingdom’s armies, Qi Lu Xiuda. My original name was Jing Yun Xiuda.”

I couldn’t help but laugh: “Ah, I never expected that you’re related to the king, Big Brother! Little Brother truly is climbing up the social ladder.”

Zhan Hu forced out a bitter laugh as he said: “You’re playing with me aren’t you? How can I still be considered royal blood? I’m just a drifter now, that’s all. Why are you asking me what kind of battle spirit I’m using? Could it be that you want to learn it?”

I muttered with a red face: “Originally I wanted to learn it
from Big Brother since my teacher gave me a mission beforehand. That is, to learn some basic battle spirit to strengthen my weak body. But Big Brother’s battle spirit is a royal secret. How could I possibly be able to learn it?”

“Foolish little brother, why can’t you learn it? It doesn’t matter. Sect bias has already buried so many talented people, let alone you, who majors in magic. I’ll teach you the Ascending Dragon’s Judgment right now.” Zhan Hu boldly said.

What a pure person I have recognized as a brother. It seems like one of the missions Teacher Di has given me will soon be accomplished. I gratefully said: “That’s simply too good then. Thank you Big Brother.”
With a solemn voice, Zhan Hu seriously said: “The Ascending Dragon’s Judgement is just one of many cultivation methods but its origin is extremely ancient. It should be something the Sacred Knights created thousands of years ago. Its cultivation is split into nine main stages. Namely, they are establishing the foundation, entry, basic understanding, first success, understanding, purification,  transformation,  ascension, peerless and unfathomable. The early stages are easy in comparison to the later stages; you only need to cultivate and you will surely be able to reach it. However, from the fourth stage and onwards, it becomes extraordinarily difficult. You can no longer advance with just your efforts; comprehension is required. I’m already at the middle of the transformation stage. There’s actually a lot of overlap between  the  cultivation  of battle spirit and your cultivation of magic power. It’s just that one is acting from the mind to control the external magic elements while battle spirit is the development of the body’s potential. Generally speaking, both have their own methods of cultivation. I’ll teach you the basic meditation method to cultivate battle spirit.”

Zhan Hu was a very strict teacher. If I slacked off even the slightest, he would severely reprimand me. He planned to train me for two months before letting me go to Xiuda. Every
morning there would be training to strengthen the body and under his supervision, I wasn’t allowed to use magic at all. The body training mainly consisted of running and  strength training. In the afternoon I would begin cultivating my battle spirit by meditating. At night I can meditate and cultivate my magic.

In the beginning I wasn’t used to this, but he wasn’t in any way inferior to the years of training under the devil teacher, Teacher Xiu. However, I gradually discovered that no matter how tired I was in the morning, after meditating for a while in the afternoon I would already be recovered. The next day I would always be even more vigorous. Gradually, battle spirit began condensing within my lower dantian and combined with my magic power without any difficulties (The lower dantian is located in the lower abdomen). I was truly relieved that they combined without conflict.

After today’s afternoon meditation, I got up and stretched my body. I picked up an iron sword and brandished it. At the
moment, I was practicing the basics of swordplay. While I practiced swordplay, I also controlled my battle spirit the way Zhan Hu taught me and made it flow into the iron sword from my arm. Shortly after, I was successful. However, this success may be due to my powerful mind. It felt as if the sword became lighter. With a light swing of the sword, I could sense the powerful spirit within it. With my strong foundation, I began a sword dance which caused the wind to whistle. It felt  quite good.

Suddenly, I had an idea. What would happen if I also imbued the sword with magic power? Let’s try it out. Within my gold dan, I separated a bit of magic power. As I condensed this light element, I slowly began pouring it into the sword. In the beginning it seemed as if the battle spirit and magic power were doing their own thing and ignoring each other, but then they gradually began resonating. The battle spirit and magic power fused into a powerful energy. I swung the sword at a boulder to test it out. Immediately, the boulder split into two. It seems like I’ve made another discovery. Under certain conditions, magic power can increase the power of battle spirit. I need to go tell this wonderful news to Zhan Hu.

After hearing what I said, Zhan Hu told me with extreme excitement to demonstrate it again. He told me he hasn’t been able to improve his strength for a long time. If he could fuse magic power with battle spirit in sword to create a magic sword, he would surely be able to improve once again. I was also very excited for him. Of course, the task of teaching him magic fell on my shoulders.

Magic power and battle spirit had distinct differences. Battle spirit was easy to begin cultivating but magic power was much harder to begin cultivating in. Zhan Hu had never learned any magic so I first had to make him comprehend the existence of the light element. This was necessary if I were to teach him light magic.

After  arriving  at  his cottage,  I prudently  told  him: “Big
Brother, I’m going to use my magic power as a guide for you to sense the light elements. You must congregate your spiritual power in accordance with my guidance, otherwise the light elements won’t recognize you. There is only one chance, so you must pay attention.”

Zhan Hu nodded his head. “Okay. Begin then.”

I made him sit cross-legged in front of me. Slowly, I began lifting my finger until it was resting on his upper  dantian. “We’re beginning now.”

I condensed my magic power into a thin thread as it followed my finger and entered his upper dantian. During the opening of his upper dantian, he was trembling from head to toe but
gradually, he became more and more tranquil.

I started speaking. “Light element is an extraordinarily gentle kind of magic element. The true essence of light is that of generosity, tolerance, peace and love. All living things require light element to grow. Light is like our elder brother and our fathers and mothers. Use your heart to sense it. Let it accept you. We are all the children of Light.” After finishing  this speech, not only did I feel that Zhan Hu has comprehended the light elements, I also felt a change within my body.

Chapter 14 – Onward To Xiuda

I felt the surrounding light elements begin to wrap around me. My entire body was immersed in an ocean of light element. What is causing this? I withdrew my finger, letting Zhan Hu comprehend the subtle light elements by himself. Sitting cross legged across Zhan Hu, I had focused on my translucent golden sphere. The golden sphere showed no abnormalities, unmoving between my eyebrows (on top of the upper dantian).

I had just relaxed, thinking about standing up and stretching; when suddenly, the light elements around me frantically surged with me at the center. Light element spread throughout my body, its power far too great. I don’t dare resist and only relaxed my body, accepting the baptism of light elements. The light element within my body gathered like lightning. From head to toe, my body was like a balloon being inflated. I could no longer absorb any more. At this time, the golden sphere began to move. It began to run through the blood vessels, rapidly absorbing excess light elements. The feeling of swelling gradually disappeared. The golden sphere’s absorption rate was much greater than before. Quickly, the frantic light elements that entered my body achieve equilibrium. I finally relaxed and exhaled. I continued to maintain the current situation until
light elements no longer surge into my body.

I took in a deep breath, controlling the golden sphere within my body to cycle through my body before slowly returning to my upper dantian. I was amazed to discover that my originally translucent golden sphere had already entirely become transparent, showing a sparkling light. Within my body, Xiao Jin sent out a lively mood for me. It was obvious that from the frantic surge of light elements just now had granted me benefit not at all small. I remembered that Teacher Di told me I should strive for my golden sphere to at least become completely transparent within four to five years. Then how can this be? I carefully recalled what had happened previously. Could it be that when I introduced the light elements to Zhan Hu that they had acknowledged me once more? This is too miraculous. I could not bear the violent joy surging through me. Currently, I have have become the continent’s eleventh magister, at least from my magic power. Give me a bit of time to adjust and I won’t be inferior to any person. This is too wonderful.
I opened my eyes. Zhan Hu had already woken up earlier, fixedly looking at me. Seeing me awake, he hastily  asked, “Zhang Gong, what happened to you? A moment ago your body was twinkling a dazzling, golden light, rendering me unable to approach you. What was that?”

I emotionally said, “Big Brother, I’ve succeeded. When I introduced you to the light elements, I don’t know why but I went through a baptism of light elements. Right  now,  the source of my body’s magic power, my golden sphere is already completely transparent.”

When Zhan Hu heard, he had a slightly confused appearance and smiled, saying, “Talk a bit slower, don’t speak so fast. If you speak so fast, I can’t hear clearly.”
I deeply looked at Zhan Hu’s eyes, and said word by word, “In other words, currently your little brother’s magic power has already reached the level of a magister.”

After Zhan Hu heard what I said, his mouth turned into an O and said with awe, “Younger Brother, you’ve done it. You’ve done it. This older brother might not be able to be your rival. Haha! Very good. I have a magister as my little brother, let us drink a cup and celebrate well.”

Feasting, I asked him what he had felt from the  light elements. He told me he had felt very comfortable. I told him he must think deeply about the methods that I have taught him.

After I became a magister, we continued to exchange each
other’s knowledge. Two months had passed in a blink of an eye and I had already practiced Ascending Dragon’s Judgement to the level of basic understanding. Zhan Hu was very amazed by my rate of learning. We both said that my current spiritual power is exceptionally powerful. Therefore not only can it be used to control magic power, it can also be used to control battle spirit to a rather exceptional degree. My body is much stronger than before, and as a result of gorging myself on food every day, my body weight increased by five kilograms. In addition, I’ve grown a bit tan from exercising every day. From Zhan Hu, I learned three sword techniques. My battle spirit had fundamentally aided the use of my magic.

Zhan Hu’s progress was also equivalently large. He could already use a few of the most basic light spells. I  primarily taught him a few support enchantments, because learning advanced light attack spells isn’t something that can be learned in a short period of time. He was able to use light support enchantments with his knight’s sword and battle spirit in concert. It produced an exceptionally good result. If I used advanced spells to attack him, it wouldn’t affect  him whatsoever. It was very easy to explain to him. He excitedly told me that he had already begun to stride towards becoming a radiant knight. I believe that he is capable of succeeding soon.
He also said that he will certainly not let me advance alone and will definitely overtake me.

Two months of living together made us as intimate as true blood brothers. We have already reached the point where words are no longer said. I told him about the assignment that Teacher Di had given me. He said that when I finish my travels from Xiuda that I must come back and look for him. He wants accompany me to complete this formidable  assignment together. Naturally, I was extremely happy.  Having  his powerful arm give me assistance will be of great aid in completing this assignment. With these brothers’ power combined, they could break gold. Haha, I didn’t expect Ma Ke to not come and have Zhan Hu accompany me.

I should go. Zhan Hu sent me off from the village’s entrance. He gifted me a set of his previous knight clothes. Although it wasn’t gorgeous, when I put them on, they looked very spirited. To match it, he gave me an iron sword, it had a mighty appearance. Zhan Hu said that like this I could be received
welcome at Xiuda. It would also be easy to obtain everyone’s respect. It would be make it very convenient when entering and leaving a city.

Standing at the village’s entrance, I took a glance back at the small village as similar to the size of a peach orchard, and said with a sigh, “Big Brother, I truly would somewhat hate to part here.”

Zhan Hu drew my shoulder towards him, saying, “Little Brother, even a feast will eventually have to end. Take care of yourself on your journey. When you finish your travels at Xiuda come back immediately and find me. We’ll find the holy sword together. Big Brother looks forward to go out together  and create a new world.
“Good. Big Brother, be at ease. I will return as quickly as possible.”

Zhan Hu with a bit of grief, said, “When you go to Xiuda, if you have an opportunity, could you go take a look at my home? But you mustn’t tell them about my circumstances. So long as they are safe, I would be relieved.” It seems that he is still very concerned about his home. After all it was the home where he was born and raised.

“Then why aren’t you going back? It would be great if you returned with me then! Then we don’t have to separate. The king isn’t that young anymore either. Even if he has high expectations of you, he won’t wish for you to leave again.” I said in an attempt to persuade him to come with me.
“I can’t. You don’t understand. We can talk about it again once you return so we can set off to retrieve the Holy Sword. You go now then. Quickly go so you can quickly come back.”

It seems like I’m unable to convince him no matter what. Reluctantly, I waved goodbye the big brother I have just gotten these last two months. Facing towards Xiuda’s vast earth, I continued my journey.

Chapter 15 – The Knight Academy

Entering the borders of Xiuda, there were many differences here compared to Aixia as expected, but the simple and honest nature of the people here were the same. Everywhere in Xiuda, you could see warriors wearing knight’s attire. Even a few remote villages were like this as well. It is clear that Xiuda held military tradition in esteem.

On the road, I practiced a few rank 8 spells that I couldn’t use previously with the light magic book Teacher Di gave me. Although they were only one rank higher, they were truly awesome, their results were certainly as different as heaven and earth. My increase in strength made me feel full of confidence in completing this journey of learning.

Because I wore the earth knight attire (what Zhan Hu had given me), I arrived at Xiuda Kingdom’s Capital City without a hitch. Ah, what grand buildings, the tall city gate tower intimidated people at first glance. From my observations, the
city guards were all made up of advanced warriors, truly powerful.

When city guards’ officers and men saw my earth knight’s attire, they displayed a gaze of reverence, satisfying my vanity once more. Just as I was about to enter the city, I suddenly heard a person shout from inside the city, “People in  front, move out of the way!” I unconsciously stood to the side and looked toward the city’s interior. Wa, that’s an earth dragon?

I saw ten massive creatures rush out. On top of each creature sat an armored knight holding a massive 3.6 meters long dragon spear. Truly awe inspiring. Those huge creatures should  be earth dragons. I attentively observed, discovering that their lengths were similar to Xiao Jin’s, they were only a bit shorter. Their bodies were about five meters long and two meters tall, with two thick, strong hind legs to support their massive bodies and two large claws on their forelimbs. There was no doubt it had the power to rip a tiger apart.

I inquired to the person to my side, “Hello, are those the Earth Dragon Corps?”

The soldier looked at me and replied, “You aren’t a native? The Earth Dragon Corps routinely patrol the city every  day. They are truly our idols.”

I laughed and said, “That’s right. I came here to attend the Royal Knight Academy. I’ve never seen earth dragons before. They are truly impressive.”
The soldier wore an expression of reverence and respectfully said, “In the future you will surely become a member of the Earth Dragon Corps.”

Walking into the Xiuda city, everywhere in the city was bustling with noise and excitement. I only asked once and heard the directions to the Royal Knight Academy. Arriving at the academy’s gate, just as I was just about to enter, a guard barred the way.

He politely said, “Hello sir, may I ask who you are looking for?”

I promptly said, “Hello, I am a graduate from the Aixia Kingdom’s Royal Intermediate Magic Academy, on behalf of
Principal Lao Lun Di to come and look for your academy’s principal Li Ke Wen.”

“So you actually came from Aixia Kingdom, I’ll bring you to go see the principal.” He said straightforwardly.

“Then I will thank you.” He explained to another guard, then brought me inside the knight academy. The first thing I saw entering the gate were a pair of statues of swift, noble horses. It seems that these are the knights’ emblem. The guard and I turned seven corners and moved through eight school buildings and several large training grounds, arriving at the corner of the academy. This environment is truly good. It was like a small forest; you rarely see so many plants growing. At the center of the forest, there was a small courtyard, at the center of the courtyard there was a small room. Without even being nearby, I heard people talking.

A bold and angry voice said, “How are you so stupid? Don’t use inflexible strikes, use what you’ve learned creatively. If you continue to practice so inflexibly you will forever be unable to become a radiant knight. Damnably stupid.”

A different bright and respectful  voice  replied,  “Yes, Teacher.”

“It’s like I’m with an idiot. Come, again.”

I asked the guard, “What is this all about?”

The guard smiled saying, “The Great Principal is teaching his disciple. Let’s go over.”

In my heart, I was somewhat terrified, “Will it be alright if we disturb them?”

Just as I let out my voice, the bold voice from the small, inner courtyard pieced it, “Who is it? Did I not command to disallow anyone casually disturb me?”

The guard respectfully said, “Great Principal, Aixia Kingdom’s
Great Lao Lun Di has sent a person to come find you.”

“Oh? Quickly come over.”

I entered the courtyard with the guard. There  were  two people inside. One was an elderly man with a height exceeding two meters and a dragon’s beard. He was wearing tight fitting warrior’s clothing and held a wooden sword. At his side was an adolescent that appeared not much different than me. He was a bit taller than me. His upper body was bright red and displayed strong, rugged muscle. It seems that a moment ago they were exchanging blows with wooden swords.

I quickly walked in front of the old man and deeply paid my respects. I lowered my head and respectfully said, “Teacher Li
Ke Wen, Hello. I am Zhang Gong Wei, a graduate from the Aixia Kingdom’s Royal Intermediate Magic Academy. I was entrusted by Teacher Di to come and meet you.”

Teacher Wen looked from head to toe and said with a smile, “Lao Lun that old fellow, I thought he had already forgotten about me. You’re his disciple? Even now there are still people that are willing to learn his lousy light magic. It seems your aptitude is not bad but it isn’t equal to my learned martial skills, haha.”

A very straightforward character, however his  words  made me somewhat embarrassed. Neither humbly nor arrogantly, I said, is “Teacher Di’s light magic still quite ferocious. Like your martial skills, they each have their own merits. Excuse me, this student cannot put this off any further. Here is a letter from Teacher Di. Please look at it.”

Teacher Wen took the letter and said, “Don’t speak so formally. It is awkward for me to hear. I’ll look at what Teacher Di wrote.” He quickly finished reading the letter and once again looked at me from head to toe. Looking at my straight hair, he finally said, “Old Di wrote that he had much confidence in you, said you were a magic genius. I don’t know how much of a genius though.”

I didn’t dare reply, fearing a reply would badly excite the fiery temperament of the old man. It was actually his apprentice that helped me out of the predicament. “Master, a guest arrived, won’t you invite him into the room to rest? You’re frightening him.”

“Hehe, right. You youngsters will be very intimate in the future, huh? Walk. Let’s enter the room. Guard, you can
return.”

We entered the wooden room. Teacher Wen inquired from me how Teacher Di was doing. From his questions, I felt that he and Teacher Di had a deep friendship.

Teacher Wen said, “Oh that’s right. I still haven’t given you an introduction. This is my disciple, Dong Ri Huo. He’s half elf. He’s a kid that keenly feels teacher’s temperament, hehe.”

Dong Ri felt a bit embarrassed by Teacher Wen’s words. I nodded at him, saying, “Hello. Please take care of me in the future.” He gave a warm smile in return.

Chapter 16 – Physical Training

“Come on, let’s chat while we eat.” We arrived at the principal’s exclusive dining room. At first, I was a bit nervous and ate the food bit by bit. But when I saw what Teacher Wen looked like when eating, I felt that my previous image was simply too elegant.

Teacher Wen had one foot up on his chair and was noisily, madly scooping up food into his mouth, making food fly all over the place. Dong Ri gave me a sheepish smile. I heard Teacher Wen’s voice: “Zhang Gong, why aren’t you eating. Quick, eat some more.”

After hearing Teacher Wen’s encouragement, I’ll definitely be blunt. I started sweeping up food like a tornado. From morning until now, I’ve only eaten some traveling rations. I’ve been hungry enough to die for a long time. Now it was their turn to be dumbstruck. In the short time Teacher Wen wasn’t paying attention, I’ve already cleared off more than half the food on
the table.

“Wah, this kid. Has Lao Lun been starving you so much, that you came over here to balance it out?” Teacher Wen teased me.

Now that I’ve already started eating, I can’t resume being polite. I’ll eat until I’m full before I’ll consider it again. With my mouth full, I answered with a muffled voice, “Teacher Wen, if you don’t hurry up and eat, you’ll be hungry later.”

“Ah! Dong Ri, eat quickly. He’s eating too fast, we won’t get anything to eat if we don’t hurry up.”

How can we still chat while eating like this, it’s literally just like a competition. By the time all the food was cleared, I reckon I was the only one who was full. Teacher Wen grudgingly said: “Looks like we need to make more food in the future. Old Di sent me a rice bucket.”

After returning to the log cabins, Teacher Wen said: “Ah, Zhang Gong. From now on you’ll live with Dong Ri in the house on the left. Old Di let me train you for half a year. Will you be able to persevere?” I saw a bit of craftiness in his eyes. Looks like my life’s going to get difficult. Then I must not embarrass Teacher Di. I resolutely answered: “No problem. I will certainly persevere.” Inwardly I believe that, with the foundations I learned from Big Brother, I will definitely be able to cope with whatever comes up.
We started to  idly  chat.  From  our  conversations,  I  learned that Teacher Wen is a radiant knight and Dong Ri is an earth knight. Underneath Dong Ri’s blonde hair was his unique characteristic as a half-elf – pointy ears (half-elves are very rare, they are the results of when  a  human  and  an  elf  mate.  They have humans’ intelligence as well as elves’ talent. Take Dong Ri as an example, he has a  human’s  structure  but  an  elf’s  face. Elves are all very handsome, on this point Dong Ri makes  me admit my inferiority. I know  that  in  terms  of  talent,  he’s certainly not any worse than me. It’s just that he wasn’t as lucky as I was, hehe). Teacher Wen said that Dong Ri’s archery skills are ancestral  skills.  They  are  extremely  powerful,  he  even admits his inferiority in this aspect.

I accidently said: “Dong Ri’s archery skills are that good. If he learned some magic to make some magical arrows, then it will be even more powerful.”

They both stopped talking and were looking at me weirdly. Dong Ri’s eyes were also showing boundless desire. I asked:
“What, was what I said wrong?”

For the first time, Teacher Wen started to get serious and said: “No, what you said couldn’t be truer. If you didn’t come, I was going to have Dong Ri go to Old Di to get him to teach him some magic. Now that you’ve come, you two can learn from each other. In exchange, I will also teach you some martial arts.”

I said smiling: “Don’t be so serious sir. Brother Dong Ri and I certainly won’t let you and Teacher Di down.”

Starting from the next day, Teacher Wen had me do physical training with Dong Ri. Teacher Wen had very rigid requirements, even harsher than Big Bro Zhan Hu. If not for the fact that I had a certain amount of foundation, I would have
collapsed long ago. Teacher Wen even praised me saying that my physical ability isn’t like a mage’s. How could he possibly known that I’ve already been training for two months?

I was finally able to rest in the afternoon. Originally, Teacher Wen also wanted to teach me battle spirit, but I told him that I’ve already learned some battle spirit from a friend and didn’t want to change it. Teacher Wen wanted me to show him, but I muddled through by saying that my friend didn’t want me to show it to other people. Teacher Wen got a bit angry and said that he won’t bother with me anymore then. The next day, he increased the level of my physical training by a lot. Nearly killed me.

That’s good. The Ascending Dragon’s Judgement truly is a good battle spirit cultivation method. I only need to sit down and meditate for a while then my physical strength will be restored. My magic power seemed to have reached a bottleneck. I couldn’t find a method to continue advancing but I had this feeling of being enriched. However, I sensed that with my
current strength, I could even move the mountains and fill the seas. My magic power was like the unceasing torrent of the Yangtze River.
I used the same method that I used to teach Big Brother Zhan Hu to teach Dong Ri light magic. His acceptance was even quicker than that of Zhan Hu. When I experienced his sword techniques, I could only describe them as frightening. It is said that within 800 meters, relying on his keen sight he could cut off the right wing of a housefly without even touching the left wing. Teacher Wen had exaggerated that with one glance, Dong Ri could identify the father and mother of a housefly. Dong Ri’s personality is rather easygoing. A few parts of his character are quite similar to mine. Although we haven’t known each other for a long time, we’ve already become exceptionally  good friends.

Evening was the best part of the day for us because we could go out and have fun.

Time goes by so fast. I’ve already been in Xiuda city for over a
month. Today, Dong Ri and I went out to play. We were just outside the academy when someone called out to Dong Ri.

“Big brother Dong Ri.” A delicate voice floated over.

Dong Ri and I turned around at the same time. A red-haired girl approached us, maybe younger than us by a year (I’m two months older than Dong Ri). She had big, watery eyes and very long hair. I poked Dong Ri and whispered to him: “Your girlfriend?”

Dong Ri’s face immediately went red. He hurriedly explained: “No, we’re just ordinary friends.” I teased:  “Really?  Doesn’t look like it. Hehe.”

At this point, that red-haired girl already arrived in front of us and said to Dong Ri: “Big brother Dong Ri, long time no see. Is Teacher Wen being too strict? You seemed to have lost weight.” Wow, she’s this concerned about him and he still says she’s not his girlfriend.

Dong Ri muttered: “Hello Miss Hua Lun.”

Miss Hua Lun angrily said: “Didn’t I already tell you, don’t call me Miss Hua Lun. Call me Hong Xue okay. Eh, who is this?” She had only noticed me now, am I really that insignificant? I’m practically being regarded as air.
“Hua Lun, ah, no, Hong Xue. He is my friend, a student of a friend of Teacher Wen’s. He studies magic.”

I smiling said: “Hello Miss Hua Lun, I am Zhang Gong Wei.”

She also replied kindly, “Hello, I’m Hong Xue Hua Lun. It’s a pleasure to meet you.”

I said to Dong Ri: “Dong Ri I still have some things to do. You and Miss Hua Lun talk, I’ll go ahead.” I speedily slipped away without waiting for Dong Ri’s reply. Haha, let’s give this kid a chance.

Chapter 17 – Orphan Dong Ri

As she watched me leave, Miss Hua Lun said to Dong Ri: “Oh, your friend is so considerate. He left so quickly.”

Dong Ri complained in his heart, what kind of friend is he? He escaped without me. This time I’ve been ensnared by Hong Xue and won’t be able to escape for a while.

Leaving aside how Dong Ri dealt with Hong Xue, I wandered around the main streets leisurely after I separated with them. As I wandered around the streets, I suddenly noticed that there were many people gathered ahead of me. What are they up to? I couldn’t help but be curious with my juvenile temperament, so I walked over to take a look. It turns out it was an announcement. I squeezed to the front of the crowd. On the announcement it was written that next month there would be a nationwide grand tournament. They’re inviting experts from all over to come and participate. It wasn’t limited to martial arts, that is to say that magic was also allowed. The top 10 people can directly join the
Earth Dragon Corps. I wasn’t really interested in it since I already had a Five Clawed Golden Dragon. Naturally I wouldn’t be interested in fake dragons.

I returned to the academy to discover that Dong Ri still hasn’t returned. I asked Teacher Wen about the competition I read about in the announcement.

Teacher Wen asked me: “You’re participating Zhang Gong?
Ah, this is a great opportunity for you.”

I shook my head and said, “I’m not participating. Everyone else is a knight and I’ll be the only mage. What’s the point? Besides, I don’t want to join the Earth Dragon Corps. It would be better for you to have Dong Ri participate.”

It was only now that Teacher Wen noticed that Dong Ri hadn’t returned with me. “Where did Dong Ri go?”

I gave him a mysterious smile. “Him, ahhh. He’s fine. He’s on a date with that girl Hong Xue Hua Lun.”

Teacher Wen knitted his eyebrows. “So it’s actually that girl Hong Xue.”

“You also know about her?” I asked.

“Of course I know. She’s His Majesty’s niece. The child of the king’s younger sister. Ever since I attended a banquet at the royal household with Dong Ri, she would always come to bother Dong Ri. I feared that she would affect Dong Ri’s studies so I made sure he avoided her as much as possible.”

“This is where you’re wrong. Both men and women have to marry. How could you stand in the way of other’s love?” I said with a giggle.

“You brat. You’re not the least bit serious at all, just like that old fellow Lao Yun. Hmph! Wait until I ask Dong Ri when he gets back.” Ah, Dong Ri. You can’t blame me. I didn’t do it on purpose.

After an a little bit more than an hour, Dong Ri returned. As soon as he entered he was greeted by Teacher Wen’s repulsive face. “Teacher, I’m back.”

“Hmph! You still know to come back. There’s nothing good to be said about your martial skill yet you still go and court girls. You’ve made me lose face.”

Dong Ri wasn’t acting like how I imagined at all. Instead of admitting his mistake in fear and trepidation, he faintly said: “I’m an orphan, and the other person is royal blood. What qualifications do I have to court her? I’m going to go rest now.” (Dong Ri was picked up by Teacher Wen was he was small. Since then he has followed Teacher Wen.) After saying this, he turned around and went to his room, leaving Teacher Wen to glare at my small eyes with his big eyes. Teacher Wen said: “This child,
how can he be like this? Ah, he’s never contradicted me before.”

I thought it over for a bit before speaking. “He is surely feeling wronged because he feels inferior. You can be relieved. I’ll go console him. I must also accept some of the responsibility for this matter. I shouldn’t have abandoned him earlier.”

When I returned to the room, I discovered Dong Ri sitting in the corner staring into space foolishly. I walked in front of him and asked: “What’s going on Dong Ri? Who’s bullying you? It was my bad, I shouldn’t have abandoned you there.”

Dong Ri indifferently responded: “It’s not about you.”

“Then what’s the matter? Don’t be like this all right? I’m also a commoner, how about that? Let others say what they will.” I used my strength to shake his shoulders.

Suddenly, Dong Ri violently pushed me away as he roared: “Even if you’re a commoner, you still have a mother and father! What do I have? I don’t have anything at all. I’m an orphan. Do you know what they say about me? They say I’m a mixed breed. A mixed breed. Did you know?”

At this moment, Teacher Wen rushed in from outside and tightly hugged Dong Ri. “Child, don’t be like this. You still have me. I’m your closest relative now.” It seemed Dong Ri found some comfort within Teacher Wen’s embrace for he soon burst into tears. Embracing him, Teacher Wen couldn’t help but release his tears too.

“Child, tell me. Who said you’re a mixed breed? Tell me.” Teacher Wen emitted an ice-cold murderous spirit as he said this. I was convinced that if a name came out of Dong Ri’s lips, Teacher Wen would immediately pounce on that person and chop him up. Maybe Dong Ri also knew what would happen if he said anything, so instead he wept and said, “You don’t need to ask.”

“Tell me.” Teacher Wen had tightly grabbed onto Dong Ri’s shoulders. I immediately ran over from the side, grabbing Teacher Wen’s hands and said, “Teacher Wen, you don’t need to bother with this matter anymore. If you take any action people will say that you’re the big taking advantage of  the young. Let us younger people settle our own disputes. I will certainly go with Dong Ri to demand justice.” I also had a monstrous fury bubbling forth within me. They actually dared to bully my friend, it seems they’ve lived long enough.
It was only due to this that Teacher Wen gradually became more and more calm. He said with a sigh: “Zhang Gong, then I’ll request that you please do so.”

I coldly answered, “You might not know, but before I arrived, my magic power has already reached the rank of a magister.” If I want to increase his confidence in me, I can’t conceal my strength from him.

Teacher Wen and Dong Ri were both stunned. Such a young magister! Who could possibly accept that?

Thinking that they still weren’t convinced, powerful light elements surged forth as I brought out the transparent gold dan from my upper dantian. After revolving around me for a bit, it
stopped at my upper dantian. This is one of light magic’s most direct and powerful spells, a pure energy attack.

It seems Dong Ri had already forgotten about his shame when he said: “Ah, you’re so powerful Zhang Gong.”

I withdrew the magic and resolutely told Dong Ri: “Good little brother, tomorrow we’ll go find those that bullied you and get your revenge. Are we not also people? In the future we will certainly be able to create a career for ourselves.”

My words seemed to have allowed Dong Ri to pull himself together. He tightly gripped my hands. All of our words had been said.

After Teacher Wen left to go rest, I inquired from Dong Ri what the matter was. While clenching his teeth, he told  me about what happened during their encounter.

It turns out that after I left, Hong Xue ensnared Dong Ri and forced him to accompany her for a walk. Not long after, they came across a noble’s child. No matter if they were the son of a duke or an earl, they all tried to court Hong Xue. She truly is a femme fatale. It was only natural that they were extremely jealous of Dong Ri who was able to accompany Hong Xue. They immediately began spouting evil words at him. All sorts  of vulgar words were thrown at him. From his childhood, Dong Ri had never had much contact with others and he also wouldn’t strike back. It was only after Hong Xue retaliated on his behalf that he would angrily fought the nobles and run back, sulking.

Chapter 18 – Taking The Initiative To Provoke

“Dong Ri, Rest assured. Tomorrow I will definitely go with you to seize justice from them.”

I made us meditate together. Like this, we quickly entered the land of dreams. Tomorrow I will definitely speak out for him.

Early morning, when Dong Ri and I woke up and was just about to start our body strengthening exercises, Teacher Wen stopped us. Teacher Wen said, “Today I am giving you the day off. Rest well.” Saying this, he turned around and left.
Dong Ri and I looked at each other with surprise. We both knew that Teacher Wen gave us this time in order to take revenge. This is great. I immediately urged Dong Ri to quickly change his clothes, so that we could go find that gang of despicable fellows and get revenge.

“Principal, Is Elder Principal here?” A familiar voice came from outside the room and I quickly ran out to look. It turned out to be the gate guard.

I smiled and said, “Elder Brother Guard, What business do you have? I think Teacher left to inspect the academy.”

“Ah, so it’s Zhang Gong. It’s not good. Something big happened. Duke Bi Qi Zhu brought several Earl Elders to come
see the Principal. It looks like something  terrible  is approaching. I don’t know what’s going on. They’ve brought their own clan’s future generation. Altogether there are about a hundred or so in total. Their relentless demands is slowly eroding away the gate’s guards.” He said while panting.The guard looked very worried.

Ah? Impossible. We still haven’t gone to take revenge. Unexpectedly they actually came to get revenge against us. Although they have infuriated me, I calmly said, “Elder Brother Guard, first go into the academy and find Teacher Wen. Dong Ri and I will go to the gates and take a look.”

Dong Ri and I arrived at the academy gate with the speed of lightning. Damn! It was truly noisy, just like a market. A large group of people were crowding at the academy gate. Dong Ri pulled on my ear and quietly whispered into it, “Zhang Gong, look. Those brats over there are the noble children I hit yesterday.”

I thought to myself, little brother, you can really hit. All those you hit were the children of government officials. It’d be useless to say anything now. Together, Dong Ri and I walked  over. Dong Ri didn’t dare to say anything, so I took the initiative to yell, “Everyone quiet down! What happened?  What  troubled you so much that you came to disturb the knight academy?”

A bloated fatty that could not have walked more slowly came over and said, “Who are you? Tell your principal to come out and talk. I am Bi Qi Zhu.” Although he was very fat, , I sensed from the radiance in his eyes that the duke was not a simple person, but was actually a master.

I politely said, “Hello Duke Elder. I am a student at this academy. Bringing so many people to this academy’s gate, I fear this has caused a rather bad disturbance. When Principal Wen is
satisfied he will come out. Could you wait at the side of the road for a moment?”

He wrinkled his brow and frowned, saying, “What clan are you from? I’ve never seen you before. Are you a commoner?”

I nodded, “That’s right. I was born from commoners.” Without waiting for me to finish, he interrupted me,  “So  it turns out you were such a lowly peasant. You don’t have the privilege to speak to me. Go off to the side.”

Hearing his words, my anger immediately surged, “What’s wrong with commoners? Are commoners not people? Are only you nobles considered people? Without us commoners, what would you nobles eat, drink? Is it not because of your ancestors
that your names carry a bit of weight? What is so amazing about that? I will not move out of the way. What could you possibly do to me?”

My words made the commoners present let out a breath of their resentment. The commoners have suffered long enough from the bullying of the nobles. Behind me, Dong Ri continuously pulled on me. Later, I would know that this Bi Qi Zhu snobbishness was extraordinarily large.

My words clearly infuriated him. “Oh good. A filthy peasant dared to oppose me. Men, come teach him a lesson.” This is a populated area. Can he not distinguish this? We have to find a desolate area away from the city. He prematurely called his men to come fight me. His subordinates knew their boss’s intentions and prepared to cripple me for life in order to relieve  their boss’s anger.

Dong Ri suddenly came out from behind me and said, “What do you dare to do? This is the knight’s academy. We do not tolerate the disorder you bring.”

Not only did Dong Ri’s appearance prevent me from escaping the trouble but contrarily had gotten himself into trouble. From within the duke’s crowd yelled a person’s voice, “It was him! Yesterday it was him that hit us!”

Bi Qi Zhu glared at Dong Ri and fiercely said, “So it was you who hit my son! Humph! I will give you an ugly death! Come! Surround them for me! Do not let them run!”
Bi Qi Zhu henchmen immediately surrounded us. Our situation was far from good. I sensed that Dong Ri behind me had cowered back a bit. Attentively, I responded to his feelings, “Afraid of what? Have you forgotten I am a magister?”  My words greatly increased Dong Ri’s confidence. With a magister, what could you possibly be afraid of? Even if you fought, it would be impossible to lose.

We were surrounded like water in a bucket, with three rows surrounding another three rows. You don’t have to be this extreme. We are only two children. The fat duke  sent  out orders, “Go. Arrest them for me.” It seems he wants to find a proper place to “punish” us. Although the masses were dissatisfied and infuriated by the conduct of nobles bullying commoners, but with Bi Qi’s large forces they dared not  to speak out.

“Who dares to try?” I am truly furious. My past temperament had always made me avoid conflict. Maybe it was because my current strength is exceptionally powerful and also because
they’ve bullied us too much, that I was at the end of  my patience. I’ve decided that I would no longer run but would instead battle of life and death.

I secretly chanted an incantation to protect Dong Ri and I from within. A layer of faint white light wrapped around us like a ring. Apart from Dong Ri, everyone had thought it was battle spirit. It was actually my spell, Divine Halo.

Bi Qi was very surprised, and thought to himself, these two brats are truly powerful. No wonder they could hit my son. It is a good that I’ve brought many people. “Everyone, together! I don’t believe they can block all of us.”

“Truly shameless. You have to use this many to defeat us?” I
said with disdain.

Hearing my words, most of the men that Bi Qi brought had ceased their advance. It seems they still greatly value their honor. A knight’s spirit is deeply rooted into their minds. It will be much easier this way.

I chanted, “Oh great light elements, my friends, I request of you to let out an endless radiance.” This is a rank 5 light attack spell. Its appearance was exceptionally scary to others, even though the spell’s attack potential was not every strong.

Following my chant, a dazzling white light burst out from my body, enveloping a range of 50 meters. The thugs approaching within 10 meters of me were thrown far away. A few of the
weaker thugs suffered heavy injuries.

I coldly snorted, “Whoever no longer wishes to live, do not hesitate to come over. Let’s see if us brothers can put this worthless lot into order.”

The people present don’t dare move. Bi Qi seeing  this situation go amiss, swayingly walked to the front, his slender small eyes on his chubby face were already blinded forming two slits, “What you had just used was magic? Fine brats, it seems I have underestimated you. I will let you look at my strength. Know that my dukedom was not a product of coincidence. Humph!”

As his voice fell, I felt the pressure on my body increase. The
Duke’s small stature let out grandeur that reached to the sky. This is far too unthinkable. Don’t tell me, could it be….?”

The Duke’s words confirmed my notions. He proudly said, “You didn’t expect that I was actually a radiant knight from my appearance did you? In Xiuda, strength is not limited to one’s own appearance.”

Chapter 19 – Revealing The Enemy’s Weakness

I composed myself. I was barely able to suppress the fear I felt within my heart. I felt that if I truly fought him, the outcome would be disastrous. The rank of radiant knight is on the same level as a magister. I definitely cannot be careless. I secretly adjusted my magic power so it was in peak condition.

Bi Qi saw a different scene before him. At first, Bi Qi smiled when he saw me turn pale under his pressure, thinking that evidently I wasn’t able to resist it. Suddenly, a halo  of  faint white light emerged from my body, completely suppressing the pressure he had previously emitted. He couldn’t help but think to himself: ‘This brat. Could it be…. he actually has the strength to contend with me? Then doesn’t that mean he  has  the strength of a magister? It’s unimaginable for someone so young to possess such strength!’
At the moment, we were standing opposite of each other. I heard a sound coming from my side. The sound was different from the spiritual communication of magic, it was created by using a string. Therefore I was the only one who could hear it’s contents. It was Teacher Wen’s voice. He said impatiently: “Quickly stop resisting Zhang Gong. Don’t let him sense your strength. Quickly!”

My heart jumped in alarm. That’s right! It truly would be unwise for me to expose my strength. I gradually willed my magic power to withdraw into me. Once again, my face showed an expression as if I couldn’t endure his pressure.

Bi Qi was relieved. He thought that my strength was short- lived and my real strength was far weaker. Right as I was about to act, his old foe appeared.
“Oh! What kind of wind could have blown the Duke all the way over here? Hehe. Ah, what are you doing here with such a large amount of troops?” Teacher Wen’s words weren’t at all like his ferocious outer appearance. On the contrary, they were unusually smooth.

After seeing that Teacher Wen had arrived, Bi Qi reluctantly withdrew his pressure. He cynically said: “I was wondering if this old ghost would come out. I’m here to get justice from you, not to idly gossip.”

Feigning astonishment, Teacher Wen inquired: “Justice?
What justice? Ah, I haven’t offended you, the duke.”

The fat on the duke’s face began trembling before he replied
furiously: “You don’t know? Your disciple beat up someone yet you don’t know? Today, you must give me an explanation for this. Your disciple beat up my son in addition to many other nobles yesterday. Tell me then. What is to be done?”

Awkwardly, Teacher Wen replied: “Right, it seemed like there was this kind of report. However, it was told to me differently. The disciple said it was the noble children who insulted him first. It was only after being insulted that he acted. Ethics would say that they provoked him first.”

It seemed Bi Qi has calmed down a bit as not a single emotion was revealed on his face. Those who knew him well would know that he was truly angry now. He coldly said: “That is to say, you want to shield your disciple.”
Teacher Wen still had a good temperament, so he could ask with a smile: “Can you let me see your son’s condition first?”

Without even waiting for Bi Qi to speak, a luxuriously dressed youth came running out of the crowd. He shrewdly said: “You see, you see! He hit my face!” While saying so, he revealed his fat face to everyone.

Teacher Wen as well as all of the surrounding observers laughed. It turns out that this youngster had been slapped, thus leaving a palm print on his face. Ah, it looks like Dong  Ri’s hands were really light yesterday. Originally I thought he had beaten him up otherwise why would he bring so many people to carry out his revenge? I secretly tugged on Dong Ri’s clothes and whispered to him: “Ah, your hands are so light!” He replied: “But I can’t freely injure others either. It’s enough to give them a lesson.”

Teacher Wen said to Bi Qi: “I see that your esteemed son’s injuries aren’t that grave. Is it truly necessary for the Duke to muster such large forces for this matter? This is the Royal family’s highest level of knight academy after all.”  Clearly, within these words was a hidden threat.

Bi Qi angrily kicked his fat son’s ass back into the crowd. He hatefully said: “You scoundrel bastard! Who let you enter this world? You’ve actually made me lose so much face!” He turned his head to Teacher Wen and said: “You refrained from pressuring me today so if you give me an explanation for this matter today I’ll leave it at that.”

Teacher Wen restrained himself from smiling and coldly said: “Then what are you thinking of doing? Your son abused my disciple. Don’t tell me… you still want my disciple to apologize?
I didn’t go looking for justice from you, yet you, the guilty party came to me. You thought I was easy to bully didn’t you?” Following Teacher Wen’s words, a mob of students led by teachers from every branch rushed forth from the academy. These students were all pillars that supported the kingdom. Not a single one of them was weak let alone the academy’s teachers who were all at least earth knights. With such strength, I fear only the Earth Dragon Corps could contend with them.

(Authors note: A rule of the Xiuda Kingdom. Every single noble may possess a military force in accordance to their rank. A prince can possess 5000 troops, a duke 3000, and an earl 2000 while all other nobles may possess 1000 troops at most. On the other hand, the knight academy possessed 8000 or so students. This was one of the reason why Teacher Wen wasn’t afraid of Bi Qi at all.)

Bi Qi’s complexion changed. “Fine. You’re too  cruel.  We’ll take this matter to his majesty to judge. What does it matter how many come to pressure me?”
Teacher Wen disdainfully replied: “You have less people. If you’re going then go. I’m not afraid of you.” Teacher Wen had already been conferred the position of “Teacher of the State”. Within Xiuda, this position possessed incredible fame and influence. Because he undertook a project to provide the best education, the knight academy became an official organization recognized by the kingdom. Although the title he was granted fell short of Bi Qi’s, within Xiuda he wasn’t at all weaker than Bi Qi.

Bi Qi had all the nobles go back and wait for his message. Teacher Wen also dismissed all of the academy’s people. Before he left, he used a voice string to tell me to not take any action if he didn’t return and to watch after Dong Ri.

Actually, ever since we saw Bi Qi’s true strength, me and Dong Ri had some laments. We didn’t expect that a person like the duke had such profound martial skills. Who would have imagined that within the nobility there was such a capable person? Of course we wouldn’t rashly go take revenge anymore.
Of course, Dong Ri took some persuading before he gradually released his emotions. Other people said to let his words out. There was no need to be angry and suffer.

Bi Qi and Teacher Wen went to the Royal Palace to have judgement. Neither of them gave each other an inch. On the other hand, me and Dong Ri could only return to our rooms and wait anxiously. Even the gluttonous me didn’t go eat. It was only when Dong Ri comforted that I felt better “Be at ease. With Teacher Wen’s relationship with the kingdom, there  surely won’t be any problems.”

Sure enough, after a little more than an hour Teacher Wen returned. However, he looked displeased.

Chapter 20 – A Battle Of Honor

I immediately went over and asked, “What is going on? Could it be that His Majesty had sided with the Duke?” With an anxious gaze, Dong Ri looked at Teacher Wen.

Teacher Wen sighed and said, “It will not be like that. His Majesty is a very wise monarch and very shrewd as well. If he were to hit fifty slabs, not one strike would be different.*

“Then why do I see you having such  an  unhappy appearance?” I inquired.

Teacher Wen replied, “Although His Majesty did not discriminate against any party, he has given me a difficult task.
He will have me send a troop of students from the academy branch in order to compete in Xiuda’s five year national martial competition. Bi Qi will also have to send a single rank of troops. In addition, this affair will be resolved by seeing which dispatched troop receives the higher ranking.  The  winning party will have the losing party apologize in public.”

“Ah? So it’s decided like that.” That’s a bit unreasonable. We truly were the just party.

“Zhang Gong, you wouldn’t know. Bi Qi has an exceptional amount of influence in Xiuda. His Majesty had no choice but to yield to him to some degree. Furthermore, because of Xiuda’s prevalent martial traditions, many affairs are decided based on the result of a martial competition.” Teacher Wen said with significance.
Dong Ri interrupted, saying, “Then we won’t have to worry. Our academy has many powerful students. How could we possibly be afraid of Bi Qi?” Indeed, because of our strength, we could even rival the nobles.

Teacher Wen wrinkled his brow and said, “That is  exactly what I am worried about. Bi Qi was adamant on the two of you participating. He will also send his eldest son to participate in this tournament. Each team in the competition must have five members. Although the academy students’ strength isn’t weak, their age is comparatively young. It is impossible for them to have deeply cultivated their strength, but Bi Qi does not have that problem. It is said that his eldest son is awfully hard to deal with.”

I curled my lips, “What good could that fat hog possibly produce? Take his young, idiotic son for example.”

Teacher Wen gravely rebuked me, “Zhang Gong, you cannot look down on your opponents. You should know about Xiuda’s most ferocious Earth Dragon Corps. His son is the second corps chief of the three Earth Dragon Corps. This isn’t a position that can be obtained through bribes and influence. His eldest son this year is thirty eight years old and is already Xiuda’s genius knight. At the age of thirty he was already a heaven knight. Second only to the previous Earth Dragon’s third corps commander the Imperial Prince Qi Lu Xiuda, known as the Zhan Hu (War Tiger), Son of Jing Yun Xiuda.”

Ah? Isn’t that Big Brother? That being said, the duke’s eldest son isn’t any weaker than Big Brother.

Teacher Wen continued, “These past eight years, only the heavens know whether or not he was able to become a radiant
knight. Although Zhang Gong has a magister’s strength, in the end his cultivated experience is comparatively short.  In addition, we don’t know what other experts Bi Qi will dispatch. Therefore, I am truly worried about this competition.”

In my mind, I felt nervous. Although becoming a radiant knight isn’t an easy matter, nothing is absolute. But if the five people on the opposing team possesses Big Brother’s strength, then we are determined to lose.

While I was waging war in my mind, Dong Ri started talking. He said passionately, “Teacher, be at ease. No matter the cost, we will surely obtain the final victory. We are the righteous party. It is unconditional; we cannot let them have their way.”
Dong Ri’s words influenced me, “Right, we will  definitely win.”

Teacher Wen smiled and said to Dong Ri, “Foolish child, what would you know of righteousness. Only the strong are just. To defeat the nobles is to defeat evil. Besides, from a fundamental point, Bi Qi isn’t such a villain. It is only that he has many faults, nothing more.”

Dong Ri and I looked at each other in dismay, I said, “He isn’t regarded as a villain even with that behavior?”

Teacher Wen chuckled and said, “You two are still young and far too naive. In this world there are no absolute  villains. Neither are there any absolutely good people. There are only
those with different ideas. That is why regardless of how small a good is, don’t forsake it and no matter how small an evil is, don’t commit it. With regards to Bi Qi, it is only that he is somewhat obstinate. He has a strong notion of his clan and is somewhat protective. But when facing issues of right or wrong, he can still choose the correct choice. Can you still call him bad?”

Teacher Wen’s words deeply moved me, establishing the future philosophy that would undertake.

“Those were words spoken before. If you are satisfied then participate in the competition. Even if you were to  train  it would be too late. I can select the three strongest students at this academy to participate with you. In these coming days I will have you five people get used to each other. I demand that you ensure yourselves to be in your peak condition. Fight to obtain a high rank. In fact even if you lose it wouldn’t matter. At worst I would have to have to thicken my face skin and find Bi Qi and acknowledge I was wrong. He shouldn’t bother me about it too
much.”

After finishing, Teacher Wen laughed at himself. When  I heard a hint of bitterness inside his words. He clearly isn’t very optimistic toward us. Dong Ri and I secretly resolved that we must beat Bi Qi’s troop. Teacher Wen was at such an old age, and additionally he exceptionally valued face like most of Xiuda’s people. We absolutely cannot allow this old man to suffer humiliation.

“It is done. Today was very tiring. Rest a  bit  earlier. Tomorrow morning, I will find teammates for you, and have you train and get familiar with each other. Dong Ri, who I am most worried about is you. Your strength is still comparatively weak to the opposition. Train with great effort.” Saying this, Teacher Wen went back to his own room.
Finished eating dinner, Dong Ri and I practiced in the courtyard. I muttered to him, “Dong Ri, this competition will definitely be arduous. I believe you should fully display your advantage.”

Dong Ri curiously asked, “I have an advantage?”

I smiled and said, “Of course you do. Your advantage is indeed ferocious. It is is your bow and arrow.”

Hearing my words, he despaired, saying, “Bow and arrow? I am only accurate, my strength is not at all strong. It is of no use against an expert.”

I said profoundly, “How could it possibly be useless? What I want is exactly your accuracy. We can use  magic  arrows.” Saying this, I quietly whispered [sweet nothings] my plan into his ear. His wrinkled brows gradually unfolded.

Dong Ri smiled and hit me with a first, “Luckily you thought of that. Now we can handle them. In these two days we must diligently practice our coordination.”

I nervously said, “Lower your voice. This is our secret weapon.”
Dong Ri covered his mouth with his hand. His comical action made me hold my sides as I laughed. Only then did he know I was playing with him. He came over and noisily laughed with me.

Teacher Wen silently looked at us from the front window and couldn’t help but faintly shake his head and said to himself, “Youngsters truly don’t know the feeling of worry. I don’t even know if they have any secret abilities.”

After all, what kind of secret ability was it? Let us find out in the competition.

Chapter 21 – New Teammates

Me and Dong Ri woke up early in the morning. Thinking back on the results of last night’s practice, we couldn’t  help  but smile. We were brimming with confidence in regards to the tournament. We didn’t see Teacher Wen in the house; maybe he went to go look for some teammates for us. I was also looking forward to having new teammates.

Waiting was the best way to get annoyed. It wasn’t until noon that Teacher Wen returned. “Have you found some teammates for us? How come you were gone for so long?” I grumbled.

Teacher Wen smiled and said, “I see that you are anxious, but I’m even more anxious! I had to screen them; only the most suitable teammates will do. Hehe.”
“So you’re saying you’ve already found some suitable candidates? Who are they?” I eagerly asked.

“I told them to come report in the afternoon since we have to eat lunch first. Once they’re here, we’ll go over the tournaments rules and system again. You two can go practice for a bit before we eat. Just don’t tire yourselves out. The most important thing is to be in optimal condition. You won’t have a breakthrough in such a short amount of time.”

“Oh. Then we’ll go practice.” I said dissatisfied as I dragged Dong Ri off to practice.

Soon, it was afternoon. We were currently in  the  house resting when we heard some people shouting. “Xiu Si Ma Li,
Xing Ao Li Si and Gao De Jin, reporting for duty!” It seems our teammates have arrived.

Teacher Wen replied: “Good. Come in.” I quickly ran out of the room with Dong Ri to welcome our new teammates.

All three of them had differing appearances. Two of  them were exceptionally tall, exceeding two meters in height and possessed a sturdy body. Although they weren’t handsome, you could tell from their appearances that they had tempered themselves through extremely difficult training. They had a ferocious aura. From head to toe they had bulging muscles causing them to have a very valiant appearance. They seemed to be about 27 or 28 years old. The last person was a bit shorter, he was only about 180 centimeters tall, just a bit shorter than me and Dong Ri and appeared formal and cleanly cut. With clear and deep eyes full of wisdom, he looked to be about 24 or 25 years old.

Teacher Wen also came out of the house beaming. “Come, I’ll introduce you guys. This one here is Zhang Gong. He came from Aixia and he’s an expert in magic. Over here is Dong Ri, my disciple. He’s also the weakest out of all of you, so you must take care of each other in the future.”

Teacher Wen pointed at a robust man in red samurai’s clothing. “This is Xing Ao Li Si. His strength is approaching that of a sky knight’s. He could have graduated long ago, but in order to learn martial skills that are even more profound, he stayed to continue his studies. He’s one of the expert warriors at the academy.”

Dong Ri and I immediately went over to greet him. Although Xing Ao’s etiquette was very thorough, he didn’t really look at me and Dong Ri.

Teacher Wen pointed the other robust man. “This is Gao De Jin. His circumstances are similar to Xing Ao’s. He’s also an expert warrior.”

Indeed, their circumstances really were similar. He didn’t really put me or Dong Ri in his sights either.

Finally, Teacher Wen arrived at the side of the gentle and quiet youth and patted his shoulders. “This is Xiu Si Ma Li. He’s admired by everyone as the number one expert at the academy with the strength of a sky knight.” He truly did possess a formidable strength. As he was attentively watched me, he took the initiative and stretched his hand out. “Hello, I’m Xiu Si.”
I smiled as I shook his hands. “Hello, I’m Zhang Gong. I welcome you guys as our new members.” After seeing Xing Ao and Gao De standing behind Xiu Si, I knew that Xiu Si was the boss of the three.

Teacher Wen said: “Alright then. For now, you can all go practice and get to know each other. I’ll talk to you all about the tournament later.”

All five of us bowed in salute as Teacher Wen returned to the house.

Without letting me speak, Dong Ri said in rush: “Ah! You’re big brother Xiu Si. I’ve heard of your reputation as the number one expert among the students long ago. Please give guidance to
your little brother in the future.”

Xiu Si softly said: “I don’t dare to give you guidance. We’ll mutually help each other in the future instead.” Dong Ri could only sheepishly smile in response.

He really does know how to capture people. I don’t like these kinds of people. I interjected, “Ah, don’t we need to organize a team for the tournament? We need decide on a captain and give the team a name.”

Xing Ao directly said, “Why do we need to choose? Obviously the team captain should be Boss Xiu Si.”

Xiu Si said with a frown: “Xing Ao, don’t speak in your confusion. My ability isn’t enough to be the captain.”

“How were my words confused boss? With your strength, if you aren’t going to be the captain then who is? Don’t tell me…. you mean them?” He said as he shot us a glance full  of contempt.

So violent. I said with a slight smile, “I hope that we can all talk to each other in a peaceful manner. We all share the goal of surpassing Duke Bi Qi’s troops and to ultimately attain the position as champions to win honor for the academy. It would be pointless for us to argue over such a trivial matter. How about this, each of us will exhibit our strengths and whoever is the most powerful will be the captain.”

Xiu Si secretly thought to himself, ‘He’s only a child yet he’s so insightful. He must have an uncommon strength.’ Thinking this, Xiu Si replied: “That’s fine.”

Xing Ao and Gao De both took the initiative to forfeit. Dong Ri also forfeited; he didn’t have any ambitions within his heart at all. I didn’t have any originally either, but in order to prove to them that neither Dong Ri nor I were weak, I must compete with Xiu Si.

Obviously, Xing Ao and Gao De thought I was overestimating myself. Gao De even told me it would be better if I forfeited, otherwise my defeat would be too unsightly.
I ignored them and concentrated on my opponent who was as calm as water, Xiu Si. “Will you be starting or will I?” Xiu Si indifferently replied, “The guest will comply with the host’s rules. I’ll see your strength first. (He meant for me to demonstrate first. I’d reckon that Xiu Si is from the mountains. Haha.”

I bluntly replied, “Yes.” I walked to the center of the courtyard and closed my eyes. I started slowly moving my body, but gradually increased the speed. The whole courtyard gradually became filled with my reflections.  Suddenly,  my figure stopped moving in the courtyard but instead, there were 10 exact copies of me standing in a circle.

Xing Ao gasped in surprise. “What sort of [witchcraft] trick is this!? Why are there so many people now?”
All ten of me said, “This isn’t a trick. This is a type of spatial magic. I created it from short range teleportation magic. Every reflection is me while at the same time they aren’t me.” This was a spell I created using short range teleportation magic as a foundation. It hasn’t ever been seen in Aixia before. Actually, it was just that my teleportation speed was very fast but  it required a large amount of magic power to sustain. It was only when I entered the realm of magisters that I was able to use this spell.

Chapter 22 – Radiant Battle Squad

It’s only natural I don’t solely rely on it. This spell is only used give me enough time to cast larger spells. The ten of me simultaneously chanted, “Oh Great Light Elements, my life’s most intimate companions, become the most magnificent halo of light to be shed on this earth.” This is the most gentle rank eight spell I can currently use, Brilliant Halo. It is also a sealing spell. This was the first time I used a rank 8 spell.

Following my chant, all ten of me let out a faint golden light. From each and every illusion’s body emerged a weak ring of light, encasing everyone present. Aside from Xiu Si, everyone was somewhat shocked. Once they were all covered, they had all stopped, including Dong Ri. By use of his profound battle spirit and quick reflexes, his body let out white heaven battle spirit, withstanding the halo’s attack. However this was  all  useless. The ring of light continued to pursue him and eventually enveloped him.
All ten of me opened our mouths, saying, “If anyone can break through my magic, I will recognize you as team captain. If none of you are able to break through, then I will be team captain.”

Dong Ri had immediately given up resisting. So long as one doesn’t resist, this spell would only trap you within, without harm. The three new teammates certainly were  unable  deal with it well. They tried their utmost to  struggle,  letting  out their battle spirit in an attempt to contend with  my  ring  of light. I paid most attention to Xiu Si. His body had almost been entirely covered by the ring of light. It was like a cover of light had trapped him within.

A moment later, no matter how much they  had  struggled, they were unable to get rid of my spell. This is the gap of strength, the gap between a magister and a heaven knight.
Xiu Si took the initiative to speak, “I concede. I accept senior as the team captain.” Hearing their Boss’s words, even Gao De and Xing Ao had given up resisting.

I revoked my spell. Xing Ao said, spitting angrily, “You are truly despicable, launching a sneak attack on us.”

I smiled, saying, “Do you want to try again? This time I’ll let you properly prepare. Let us see if you can avoid it.”

Xing Ao angrily said, “You!” Then turned his head toward Xiu Si, “Boss, you should speak. We can’t let this little demon be our leader.”

Xiu Si had spoken, “Xing Ao, speak of this no more. A man’s worth doesn’t depend on his age. You think too little of Zhang Gong. Even if we had been prepared, we wouldn’t have been able to resist his magic. There is a gap between our strengths. If I haven’t guessed incorrectly, only with a Magister’s  ability could he use such strength suppressing magic simultaneously on the three of us. Zhang Gong, you are a magister.” That last sentence was directed at me, with the tone of certainty.

I nodded. It wasn’t necessary to hide this from them.

“Fine, we will obey you. Previously I had long felt myself to be a genius. But compared to you, I am still far too lacking. I will strive much harder in the future. When I surpass you, I will take back that title.” Xiu Si said, neither humble nor arrogant. Knowing that I was a magister, neither Xing Ao nor Gao De said
anything.

“Good, I will wait for you. I also hope that you accomplish this. Because from now on we are going to be comrades, and we will also be friends,” I said sincerely, gripping his hand. Although Xing Ao and Gao De’s appearances showed they still weren’t convinced, I knew that they had already accepted me in their hearts.

I scratched my head, saying, “Big Brother Xiu Si, you decide what our battle team’s name should be, is this alright?”

For the first time, Xiu Si smiled; his smile was as bright as sunlight. He said smiling, “What spell did you use a moment ago?”

“The spell I had just used was a rank 8 light spell called Brilliant Halo.”

“Then from now on our name will be the Brilliance Team.” Even now, this name receives everyone’s unanimous approval. Xiu Si gave me a feeling that his wisdom had surely outstripped his martial prowess.

Teacher Wen came out. I didn’t know if it was by chance or if it was intentional. Our problems settled, the old  man’s questions arose, “It seems you are all very close. This is very good. I wish for you to later assist each other in carving out a piece of the sky for yourselves. Come over. I’ll tell you about the competition.”

We formed a semicircle around him. Teacher Wen said, “You will be facing very difficult competition. In  this  competition, not only will experts from Xiuda participate but a few experts from the Dalu kingdom and Aixia kingdom will also participate. For example, Zhang Gong is a person from Aixia. That is why winning the competition will be a severely difficult task.”

He paused and glanced at us before continuing, “First of all, you can compete as a group. I think you won’t have many problems with this. Everyone participating isn’t weak. In the competition, you can advance through a series of duels and also through team matches. When you come across a powerful team, I recommend you challenge them as a team because Zhang Gong can use his magic. With his powerful magic, you will be able to fully display your strength with a sure advantage. From my investigation, this competition has about 10,000 groups participating, dividing into 1,024 different branches. In each branch, every group will have to undergo ten rounds. Only the branch’s champion will advance to the next stage, the knockout competition. Then finally you will move on to the finals.

We’ve never participated in a competition such as this. Hearing that the competition had so many stages, you would need to gain at least twenty victories in the competition in order to become the champion. It was just like a marathon.

“The competition rules are very simple. All you have to do is fight on the stage. If you’re going to lose you can take the initiative to concede. Aside from the being unable  to  kill anyone, there are no particular restrictions. The  competitors can fully display their complete strength. But I must request of you that unless you must, you mustn’t injure others. We are people that follow the path of virtue. This is the proper spirit of us, the Knights of Xiuda.”

Apart from me, the other four earnestly nodded their heads.

“Zhang Gong, in this competition, your position is extremely important. You will primarily provide assistance for everyone’s attacks. If there is a situation where you cannot assist, you should also participate in the attack. I believe that your formidable magic will give us an outstanding performance. I saw your competition a moment ago. While it is true that it is very good for everyone to learn from interaction, you mustn’t injure your allies. From now on, the captain of your team will be Zhang Gong. Xiu Si had made up his mind and I believe in his wisdom.” Teacher Wen nodded at Xiu Si.

Xiu Si did not acknowledge Teacher Wen’s praise. He had only nodded.

“There are still three days before we leave  for  the competition. I wish for you to properly practice cooperating
with each other for the next three days. This combination of yours is very strong. Frankly, I hope that you will save this old face of mine. I also hope that in these upcoming battles your names will spread throughout the lands as brave and chivalrous.”

Together, we let out a loud, strong, and resolute replied, “We will certainly succeed.”

Like this, because of the Child of Light’s command, the first Radiant Battle Squad had been established. Later, during the Child of Light’s adventures, the formidable Radiant  Battle Squad accomplished countless heroic feats.

Chapter 23 – The Grand Xiuda Tournament

Three days passed by in an instant. The Radiant Battle Squad now had a basic understanding of one another. Unfortunately, there wasn’t enough time for them to get to know each other better as they were forced to leave for the tournament.

The tournament was being held in Xiuda’s largest plaza. The plaza was larger than 10 football* fields combined. They had built 51 stages in the plaza long ago. Besides the stage in the center meant for the semi-finals and the finals, the rest of the stages were being used to conduct matches. After drawing lots, we were put into the 198th group while Bi Qi’s Wind Dragon Battle Squad was put into the 803rd group. We still haven’t encountered any members of their squad.

The five of us arrived at the stage. Everyone around the stage was part of a battle squad while spectators were located on
elevated stands outside of the stage. There were also many newly built pavilions and seats for spectators.

After looking around, I noticed that the majority of the participants were dressed like warriors while only a few people had different professions. I wore the matching uniforms of my squad, white warriors clothing. We planned on hiding my magic as much as possible during the preliminaries.

The tournament rules were explained by the organizers just prior to starting the tournament. According to the lots we drew, we wouldn’t fight until the third match. Judging from their appearances, the first battle had only ordinary warriors on both sides. The most they could manage was to simply chop at each other as there wasn’t even a single Earth Knight participating. In the end, the winning squad won 3-2.
The second match was virtually the same. We nearly  fell asleep watching these matches before the 198th group’s judge finally announced, “The third match, the Radiant Squad versus the Steel God Soldiers Squad.”

Xing Ao laughed. “Isn’t this Steel God Soldiers Squad actually just a rusty pile of iron?” We all burst into laughter in amusement. Xiu Si said to me, “To save time we’ll directly face off against the other team.”

I nodded in agreement.

We arrived on the stage and stunned the audience with our matching white uniforms and uniformly towering height that was greater than 180 centimeters. From the other side of the
elevated stage came the sounds of heavy footsteps. Bang, bang! Damn! They’re exaggerating too much.

The Steel God Soldiers Squad appeared. They really are overbearing! All five were fully equipped with heavy black infantry armor and an average height of more than 2 meters. Combined with their two handed greatswords, it seems they aren’t lightweights after all!

Xiu Si whispered into my ear, “Ah, they’re really calculating. The space on the stage is very limited, so they plan to charge us in an attempt to knock us over and win!”

I answered, “It’s a pity that they encountered us.” We laughed with our hearts brimming with confidence.

Naturally I had to go forward to negotiate with them as the team captain. They happily agreed to a team fight as it was advantageous to them.

The judge announced the start of the battle with a whistle. Immediately, all five Steel God Soldiers brandished their greatswords and rushed us together. While their vigor really was incredible, their speed simply was too slow. Dong Ri, Xiu Si and I didn’t move at all. We just stood at the edge of the stage with Gao De and Xing Ao holding their greatswords in front of us. Xiu Si had told me before the battle, that if it’s possible we should win with the least amount of people.

When the five opponents reached us, Xing Ao welcomed them with a roar as a faint yellow battle spirit enveloped his greatsword. The two swords crossed and the originally bold and
vigorous opponent was blown away by Xing Ao’s slash. Xing Ao had also greatly nicked his opponents greatsword in their exchange.

The rest of them were all beaten by Xing Ao. After clashing with him a few times, all of the opponents were unsteadily swaying from side to side. Gao De grumbled, “You didn’t leave any for me and took care of  them all by yourself.” All of the other competitors in the audience stared at us foolishly. Many of them were annoyed that we had only used one person.

I walked to the front and stopped Xing Ao from continuing his assault. I said to the opponents, “I advise you all to surrender. Surely you realize how great the gap is between the strengths of our squads.”
The opponent’s boss propped himself up with his sword and heavily said, “Brother, just now was your teammate using Earth Battle Spirit?”

I nodded my head. “That’s right.” I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry at what followed.

The five opponents went up to Xing Ao and knelt before him while their boss spoke. “Big brother, please accept us as your disciples. We participated in this tournament in the hopes of finding a master proficient in battle spirit.”

Xing Ao’s face turned red. He had practiced martial arts his whole life but had never before encountered such a situation. Xiu Si came to his rescue and told our five opponents to find us
once the tournament was over and gave them our contact details.

It wasn’t easy for us to leave the Steel God Soldiers Squad. On the road back to the academy after finishing our first battle, Gao De kept prodding Xing Ao by saying, “Ah, not bad. Brother already received five disciples on the first day of  the tournament. Haha. If all the battles in the future are like this, we’ll be able to form our own legion!”

Xing Ao ignored him and asked Xiu Si, “Boss, do you think I’ll be able to accept them?”

Xiu Si smiled. “From what I’ve seen, they’re simple and frank men. There shouldn’t be any problems with accepting them as
your disciples. As for whether you should accept them or not, that’s up to you.”

Carrying on, each day we participated in one group battle. All of the battles proceeded smoothly for us with Xing Ao, Gao De and Dong Ri defeating all of them. Xiu Si and I just watched them with the detached view of bystanders. In 10 battles, we had 10 victories, allowing us to proceed from the 198th group into the semi-finals.

In between each of our battles, we would go watch Bi Qi’s Wind Dragon Squad’s battles. All of their battles were unexpectedly won by just one person at the rank of Earth Knight, letting them effortlessly enter the semi-finals. From beginning to end, we didn’t see any other members of their squad. Teacher Wen said that he feared this person was the weakest of Bi Qi’s team. Our situation wasn’t looking too hopeful.

After concluding the preliminary battles, we were given two rest days before we were to draw lots again. The first round of the knockout competition would take place over four days with us participating on the third day. In other words, we had four days to rest. We were quite pleased with this arrangement. We didn’t go scout out our opponent’s strengths, instead we unceasingly practiced building up our skills as a team. While Dong Ri’s battle spirit didn’t progress much, he undoubtedly saw the most progress. He was already able to use some elementary light magic by relying on his natural elven affinity with the elements and my guidance with magic power. Furthermore, he was able to greatly increase his strength by fusing the elementary light magic, Light Arrow, with his own arrows.

Chapter 24 – A Display Of Strength

Our first match for the semifinals was held today. We didn’t know how powerful our opponents were, but we knew they wouldn’t be able to stop us from advancing. After we arrived at Xiuda Plaza, we saw that the spectator stands were already completely filled.

After everyone got on to the stage, the judge introduced both sides. “Advancing from stage 384 from the 512 of the original 1024 groups, is the Royal Knight Academy’s Radiant Battle Squad and the squad composed of people of various nationalities, the Devil Battle Squad.” After their introduction, the audience began booing them. It was only later that I found out that in all of their preliminary matches they had seriously injured all of their opponents. They had even beaten some to their last breaths.

The Devil Squad consisted of three warriors and two mages. I felt a refined strength from our opponents. I said to Xiu Si, “It
seems that today we must all appear on stage.”

Our opponents were evidently experts in team combat. After stepping onto the stage, both teams assumed a fighting stance, waiting for the judge to signal the start of the battle.

The Devil Squad’s three warriors hadn’t attacked impatiently, but rather had their mages cast defensive enchantments on them. This greatly surprised me, as the two opposing mages had the strength of a grand mage. Although their powers were far inferior to me, the defensive enchantments they used were exceptionally brilliant.

I stopped Xing Ao and Cao De, who were both eager to attack, “Let me. Since our opponents have mages, let them experience
what true magic is.” Up until now in the competition, I still hadn’t participated and had been itching to act. Seeing that opponents have mages made me eager to display my skill.

Xiu Si indifferently said, “Don’t give our opponents an opportunity. Finish them in one move.”

Xing Ao clearly knew that he could not handle the opponents well. He whispered to me, “If you finish them by yourself, I’ll admire you.”

I threw a glance at him and replied, “Ah, so it turns out you still weren’t convinced of me. Fine, today I will let you see my attack magic. You should all go down.” I directed the last sentence to my squad.

Xing Ao and Gao De still appeared a bit uneased. Xiu Si said, “Go. There is a fundamental gap between them and Zhang Gong.” Everyone walked off the stage. When the opponents had nearly finished casting, they discovered I was the only warrior there. They were stunned. A mage asked, “Are you  going  to fight alone? Can it be that you are representing your entire squad?”

I said with a smile, “Of course I will represent my team. As long as you can beat me, I’ll consider it your victory.”

A man wearing red armor from the Devil Squad bellowed in rage, “You’re looking down on us too much! Even a Radiant Knight might not necessarily be able to defeat us when we combine our forces. Brothers, let’s charge him and let him pay the price for his arrogance.”

The three warriors charged at me together. The two mages had also started to chant their incantations. “Great Fire Elements, gather at my side, condense into a dragon of fire and annihilate the enemy before your eyes!” A fire dragon. It seems this person is a fire mage. “Great Water Elements, gather at my side, condense into a dragon of water and annihilate the enemy before your eyes!” This is a water dragon. So he’s a water mage.

A pair of rank six spells, the water and fire dragons, approached me. The three warriors, each possessing  the strength of an earth knight, attacked once more  in  concert. They were truly strong and clearly enraged with me, charging towards me with all their strength.

If it was three or four years ago I definitely would have been greatly injured by this combination of martial skill and magic,
but as of now that would be out of the question.

As their spell took form, I teleported to the corner of the arena to buy myself some time. I began chanting, “Oh great light elements, I request to borrow your formidable strength, let the infinite light permeate the earth and shine!” My body suddenly emitted a dazzling light and in a flash it overcame the  twin water and fire dragons. As for the Devil Squad, they had all been knocked off the stage by my Brilliant Empire.

When they touched the spell, I reduced a portion of its magic power. It had only knocked them out the stage without injury. The pair of water and fire magic dragons were not weak. Even when compared with the absolute power of Brilliant Empire, they could not be considered inferior. However, their magic power was far inferior to my own. In addition, my psychological tactics had succeeded. Had they not recklessly charged at me in anger and rather defended against me together,  it  wouldn’t have been easy for me to defeat them. With such advantageous conditions, it was only natural for me to easily win.

The audience gave me a round of enthusiastic applause. Contrary to the atmosphere, I hadn’t felt the need to whistle towards the sky and many had asked from above who was the imposing hero that stood where I was.

When I walked down the stage, Dong Ri quickly came and excitedly said, “Zhang Gong, you truly are so powerful! It turns out magic is actually so useful!”

I said smugly, “Learn it properly then. Learn all you can from big brother and shake the world when you go out! Haha!” After revealing my strength in this battle, Gao De and Xing Ao were finally convinced that I hadn’t beaten them that time with a cheap trick. They were completely obedient to me now.

The following battles were very easy for us as we didn’t meet any teams stronger than this one. We played our triumphant hymn the whole time and in one breath, we had reached the top 32.

From the observations made by Xiu Si and I, all of the Wind Dragon Battle Squad had made their appearances. All of them were warriors, just as we predicted. Aside from  the  Earth Knight that appeared first, the rest of them all had the strength of a sky knight. However, it was unknown whether or not if they had concealed any of their real strengths. The one that posed the biggest threat to us was Bi Qi’s eldest son. In all of their previous battles, not once had he truly used his strength. He only acted once or twice, when the other members of his team were in a pinch, thus allowing them to smoothly win afterwards. As the commander of the Second Earth Dragon Corps, he had innately possessed the air of a commander. Regardless of the battle’s circumstances, he would definitely be able to lead them. Even if Mt. Tai (if there was a Mt. Tai) collapsed in front of him, he had the mettle to remain calm and continue leading. He was about 190 centimeters in height with a
lean build. Explosive power could be felt whenever he issued an order. I couldn’t help but be anxious. He absolutely must not break through the bottleneck to become a Radiant Knight, otherwise we will be humiliated.

Our next opponent was here to protect the Royal Prince Qi Lu Xiuda’s Prince Battle Squad. It is said that they were highly expected to win. They were the most powerful opponents we had faced yet. All five of them were sky knights. Furthermore, they were well coordinated during the battle.  Evidently,  this was the fruit of their many years of training together. The Prince’s Battle Squad was the greatest obstacle if we wanted to surpass the Wind Dragon Battle Squad that Bi Qi sent.

I didn’t know whether or not I would be able to meet Zhan Hu’s father, Prince Qi Lu, and accomplish the only mission big brother had given me.

Chapter 25 – A Battle Of Strength

As long as we can enter the sixteen strongest, we will come across Duke Bi Qi’s Wind Dragon battle squad. Therefore, we must overcome the Prince’s team. After a day of rest, we arrived at the same stage as yesterday and prepared to compete in our hardest match yet. For today’s battle, I specially wore my Light God Robes. Xiu Si and the rest of the team had also worn their best armor.

Standing on the stage, a feeling of unease sprung up when I saw our opponents. They presented a strong sense of unity. But in order to make up for our mutual weaknesses we had to fight as a team.

The competition had yet to start, so I let my teammates warm up beforehand. Grasping my magic staff, I walked two steps forward and politely said, “Hello, we feel very honored to have the privilege of competing with the Prince’s team.”

All of our opponents were wearing silver  warrior’s  attire. They had replied to me courteously. The tall team member in the middle walked forward two steps and said, “Hello. We saw your performance yesterday. Your magic is quite powerful, but today we will certainly halt your advance here. Our target is the championship.” Although he spoke in a very polite manner, his self-confidence was evident in his pleasant words.

I carefully looked at him. I noticed that he and Big Brother Zhan Hu had many similarities. The main difference was that he was a bit older. I couldn’t help but ask, “Excuse me, are you Prince Xiuda’s son?”

Clearly surprised, he said, “How did you know? I am Shan Yun Xiuda and the corps commander of our country’s First Earth Dragon Corps.”

He was Zhan Hu’s older brother! I had prepared myself, but the fact that he was an Earth Dragon Corp’s commander scared me. After a pause, I asked, “Is Prince Xiuda well?”

Shan Yun suspiciously looked at me and casually said, “He is very well, why do you ask?”

I smiled, “I’ll tell you after the competition. Let’s use all of our strength in this match and see whether or not you can truly stop my advance.”
My words stirred Shan Yun’s heroic spirit, with a bright voice he said, “Very well. Younger Brother, let me witness whether or not your magic is truly ferocious!”

The judge announced the start of the match and in accordance with our prior plans, Xiu Si, Xing Ao, and Gao De were in front. They were responsible for obstructing the opponent’s assault while Dong Ri and I were behind them. I was responsible for casting magic and Dong Ri was responsible for protecting me with covering fire, to let me focus on attacking.

I didn’t dare hesitate. I waved the magic staff in hand and started chanting.

“Light Elements, my friends, use your endless light to expel
evil.” Holy Light, it bestowed upon teammate’s clarity of mind and also increases their defense.

“Light Elements, my friends, become a divine halo and protect my friends.” Divine Halo, not only does it protect  my teammates, but also harmonizes with their battle spirit, further strengthening their defenses.

“Light Elements, my friends, transform into sharp swords and annihilate the enemy before you.” Light Severing Sword, rank 6 attack spell. It immediately attacked the five opponents.

I successively used three rank 6 spells. After I laid down my defensive enchantments, the three in front accompanied the Light Severing Sword charging toward the  opposing knights.
The opposing team had Shan Yun as their vanguard and met the attack in a cone formation, with their swords emitting a white battle spirit.

Three meters before they clashed, Shan Yun loudly shouted, “Brilliant Stars Banishing Evil!” The five people  brandished their longswords simultaneously, converging five lines of battle spirit into a powerful sphere of battle spirit, colliding head on. It was too late to dodge. The first to meet it was my Light Severing Sword. With almost no effect, it was swallowed by the mass of battle spirit. Close to it was Xing Ao and Gao De. They hadn’t expected the opposition to make a move from that position. Unprepared, they were unable to dispatch their own battle spirit skills and could only use their swords to resolutely withstand the blow. Xiu Si reacted a bit quicker and loudly shouted, “Illusory Execution!” The longsword in his hand dispatched a void of light and shadow to meet it.

We had lost the first bout. Gao De and Xing Ao were knocked back to my side. If Dong Ri hadn’t caught them, they would
have exited the stage. They violently coughed up a mouthful of blood and it seemed that they no longer had any battle spirit power left. Xiu Si was in slightly better condition and was pushed back only by five or six steps. A thread of blood trickled from the corner of his mouth.

Compared to our miserable condition, our opponents were faring much better with only their warrior’s clothing being a bit damaged. That damage should have been caused by my Light Severing Sword.

Too powerful. Their combination technique truly was too powerful. I fear that we would have all collapsed if I hadn’t protected Xiu Si and the others with my magic.
Shan Yun’s Knights clearly poised themselves well and hadn’t pursued. Shan Yun calmly said, “You can  still  concede. Although I am surprised you were able to withstand this strike, you won’t fare as well with the next strike. Concede.”

Xiu Si used his sword to prop himself up as he said with an indignant light in his eyes, “We definitely won’t surrender. If you have the ability, then knock us all down!”

Shan Yun shook his head and said, “You’re forcing my hand here.” All five of the Prince’s Battle Squad simultaneously raised their longswords.

I couldn’t wait any longer. I ran in front of Xiu Si and lifted my magic staff high chanting,

“Oh Great Light Elements, my life’s most intimate companions, become the most magnificent halo of light to be shed on this earth.” Following my incantation, a speck of light came out of my upper dantian. It gradually grew brighter and brighter before taking the form of a small pale golden orb. The small orb gradually changed its form to become a massive golden halo before it flew towards Shan Yun’s team. In order to further enhance its strength, I had to pour all of my  magic power into the halo, causing it to become  even  more formidable.

Shan Yun’s eyes gave an astonished expression. He lifted the longsword in his hand and yelled, “Combined Star Execution!” Five Longswords were lifted simultaneously, and let out five streams of white battle spirit, converging into a huge sword of battle spirit, chopping at my Brilliant Halo. I focused all of my spirit into the Brilliant Halo. When the battle spirit sword slashed at my halo, my whole body felt a huge vibration. It took an extreme amount of effort to maintain the halo’s form. If this were magic, then these were five Magic Scholars casting a spell together.

The opponent’s sword formed of battle spirit shattered when it clashed with the halo. However, the halo was also knocked back. Blood could be seen dripping from the corner of the mouths of Shan Yun and his team. It seems that they have received some internal injuries. I wasn’t feeling well either. It was only that I was a bit stronger than them, that’s all. I concentrated my efforts on stabilizing the halo in preparation for the next attack.

In this circumstance, Xiu Si and Dong Ri’s battle spirit power was unable to intervene. The powerful pressure of both the battle spirit and magic power had pushed us to the edge of the stage. I knew that it would be our victory so long as I could trap the opposing team in my Brilliant Halo.

Chapter 26 – With Xiao Jin

Shan Yun wiped his mouth. He bitterly smiled and grudgingly said, “It seems I’ve underestimated you. I hadn’t expected you, who is so young, to achieve the power of a magister. It is truly unthinkable. It seems I can no longer conserve my strength. Originally, this maneuver was meant to deal with Bi Er, from the Wind Dragon Squad. It seems I have no choice but to enjoy using it on you first. Come Brothers! Let them witness our true strength.”

Saying this, he lifted his longsword into the sky. Shan Yun’s four teammates sent out four streams of white battle spirit into the sky. Shan Yun appeared very strained. The white light on his sword gradually changed into a red radiance. Suddenly it soared into the sky, fusing with the four streams of white light. It formed an immense blood red longsword.

Xiu Si exclaimed, “Not good! This is divine battle spirit.”

Shan Yun’s complexion was quite pale, but he wore a victorious grin. He proudly said, “Right. This is divine battle spirit. Let’s see whether or not my strength as a radiant knight can defeat a Magister’s. Come! Witness my ultimate technique, Bloodstained Glory.”

Just a moment ago, I directed my halo towards the Prince’s team. But after I heard Xiu Si’s exclamation, it was already too late to evade. I’ll go all out. I clenched my teeth and released all of my magic power. Brilliant Halo flickered an even greater, dazzling golden light. I willed the halo to charge at them a second time.

These two powerful forces collided in the sky, violently exploding, scattering their energy onto the stage. Shan Yun and his team crashed down to the ground. The most miserable was
me; I was violently coughing up blood. My mind blurry, I collapsed into Dong Ri’s embrace. I felt my entire body had depleted all its magic power, my golden sphere pitifully depleted.

It was fortunate that the audience wasn’t affected from this distance. When they all saw our tyrannical strength, they all let out gasps of amazement.

Dong Ri and Xiu Si were behind me and hadn’t received any impact. They were only coated in grime.

Shan Yun climbed up from the floor. “Such powerful magic! With the strength of us five combined, we could barely withstand your attack. I have already exhausted my fighting
spirit.” He looked at his teammates knocked down onto the ground. He shook his head and bitterly smiled, saying, “They can no longer fight.”

Xiu Si coldly said, “Then concede. We still have two that can fight.”

“Concede? Impossible. Come, Young Hawk. Fuse.” Although my body could no longer move, I knew that if Shan Yun used a magic beast fusion, he could recover some of his fighting strength. Fused with his magic beast’s strength, Shan Yun was about to stake it all against Dong Ri and an injured Xiu Si.

With a weak voice, I called Xiao Jin from the bottom of my heart, “Xiao Jin, I no longer have any magic power. Can you
still fight? Help me.”

Xiao Jin replied that he had accumulated enough energy to support me for about three minutes.

With great difficulty, I extended my hand to stop Dong Ri from charging. With a faint voice, I said, “Keep your secret skill hidden for a later match. Let me. Come out, Xiao Jin.”

A gold light flashed, Xiao Jin appeared into the world, covering the sky. With a rough dragon’s appearance, he roared toward the sky. I knew that time was pressing and immediately sent out an attack command. In order to save his strength, I had him directly using physical attacks. .

Xiao Jin beat his huge wings and charged into Shan Yun. Shan Yun was scared stiff. It wasn’t until he sensed danger that he brandished his fantasy beast infused longsword. He shouted loudly, “Divine Hawk’s Storm Sword!” A hawk composed to battle spirit appeared on the tip of the sword, charging together with it towards Xiao Jin. In fact, Shan Yun’s power was almost exhausted. He was entirely relying on his magic beast.

Xiao Jin waved his large wings and had already won when he extended his front claw. The scene was somewhat humorous. The hawk of battle spirit that Shan Yun dispatched  was snatched by Xiao  Jin’s claw, much  like the grab of a bird of prey. It struggled with all its might. Xiao Jin shook his claw back and forth and with a grab of power, he crushed the hawk. Then he pounced towards Shan Yun.
I feared Xiao Jin would kill him and immediately told him with my mind to not injure the opponents. Xiao Jin withdrew the sharp claws he extended and instead use his wings to beat Shan Yun flying. He fainted on the ground. This time he won’t be getting back up.

Relying on Xiao Jin’s formidable strength, we won the final victory. I was already very weak and could  barely  withdraw Xiao Jin. I didn’t know what happened next.

……

I gradually regained consciousness and opened my eyes in a daze. I was in a small wooden room. There was nobody around. I tried moving a bit and my body ached from head to toe,
making me groan. It seems I’m still exhausted. I concentrated my spirit to look at my magic power. It can only be described with one word. That word is wretched. It was exceptionally wretched. The remainder of my magic power hadn’t even reached 30%. He hadn’t even known this was the result of a long period of rest.

Dong Ri’s voice came from outside, “Teacher, I think I heard Zhang Gong move. I’m going to see.”

Dong Ri pushed the door open and walked in, “Zhang Gong, you’re awake. How is your body?”

Yes, my body is very sore all over. What time is it now?” I weakly asked.

“Currently it’s already the afternoon of the  next  day.  You were unconscious for one night and day,” Dong Ri replied.

“Ah! Then tomorrow we’re going to face wind dragon squad.
How are the others?”

Dong Ri sighed and shook his head. He grudgingly said, “Gao De and Xing Ao is certain to be unable to appear tomorrow. They received serious injuries. Although Xiu Si can fight tomorrow, I’m afraid that he cannot fully recover in time. I hadn’t expected the the Prince’s squad to be so ferocious. It was truly a disastrous victory for us. We still don’t know what to do tomorrow.”
Teacher Wen’s voice came from outside the room, “Is Zhang Gong awake?”

Dong Ri replied, “Yes, he’s awake.”

Teacher Wen also came over. Ashamed, I said, “I am sorry, Teacher Wen. I failed to live up to your expectations.”

He laughed and said, “Foolish child, what are you saying? You’ve already done extraordinarily well. I hadn’t actually expected Qi Lu to dispatch Shan Yun to battle. Even more so, I hadn’t expected him to have already become a Radiant Knight. Originally there were only six radiant knights on the continent. Xiuda has four of them. The rest belong to the Dalu kingdom. If Bi Er is also a radiant knight then it is impossible for you to win
tomorrow. You’ve already defeated opponents that were far greater in strength than you five. I am already very happy. Even if you lose tomorrow, nothing terrible will come of it. Rest well. If you can’t fight tomorrow, it’s fine if you just forfeit.”

With a resolute voice, I said, “That won’t do. No matter what, tomorrow we must compete. Even if it’s only me and Dong Ri we still have to compete.” Actually, I knew that if I wanted to win tomorrow, a miracle would have had to occur.

Teacher Wen had simply smiled and said, “Rest well. We’ll talk about this again tomorrow.”

After Teacher Wen left, I closely stared at Dong Ri’s eyes. Gritting my teeth, I said to him, “Tomorrow no matter how well
I’ve recovered, we must go fight and go all out using even our very last strands of power.”

Dong Ri had tears in his eyes and grabbed me, “Right. Tomorrow I will go all out with them. We must get back face for Teacher Wen. We are the just ones. Justice must win.”

Chapter 27 – The Winning Arrow

Dong Ri left. Right now I only focused on recovering as much magic power as I could, as quickly as possible. I closed my eyes and focused my entire spirit onto my shrunken golden sphere. The golden sphere within my body was slowly revolving, absorbing and compressing magic power. This was too slow. I let go of my body and mind, and summoned the light elements in the air.

I felt many small specks of light hastily gathering toward me. I was recovering at a rate much faster than before. I directed my entire mind toward recovering my magic power.

When the match was about to begin, there were only three people on our side: Dong Ri, Xiu Si, and me. Xing Ao and Gao De’s injuries were too serious and were unable to continue competing. If my magic power had fully recovered, perhaps our situation would have been a bit better. But it’s no use saying that. Currently my magic power wasn’t in an optimal state, as it
was only at 70% capacity, but I still wanted to fight.

Early morning, when I discovered that my magic power was unable to fully recover, I spoke to Xiao Jin, hoping to rely on his power to win the match. But no matter how much I called for him, he wouldn’t wake. Later, I learned that this was because I had used too much of my magic power during the previous match. Xiao Jin was afraid that my body was unable to bear the strain and passed his long accumulation of magic power onto me. Having exhausted his energy, he became dormant. Had he not, I absolutely could not have been able to recover 30% of my magic power at the time.

There were many people who had come to watch the battle today. Naturally Duke Bi Qi and Teacher Wen were included.
Currently, it was too late to say anything else. We can only fight with our all. Like the last match, we chose to fight as a team. But this time, I was standing in the front. My hand grasping the magic staff, I looked at Bi Er Zhu opposite of me. Standing there, I sensed that although they had the unconditional advantage today, they did not have a pleased appearance. He stood there peacefully like  a  towering mountain. I was unable to see through him. I knew that this time I had run into a truly powerful opponent. Bi Er’s power was not at all inferior to that of Shan Yun’s.

Today we must win with a surprise attack. Without speaking, I raised my magic staff and closed my eyes. Carefully feeling my surroundings, I didn’t chant an incantation but instead I gathered battle spirit and filled half of my magic staff with it. Simultaneously, I separated a portion of magic power from my gold dan and gathered it in the magic staff. I let both powers slowly fuse together, until they finally reached a state of resonance. Not bad. This was the fusion technique of magic power and battle spirit I had accidently invented while I was big brother Zhan Hu. It mainly based on magic power being assisted by battle spirit, each inclusive of the other. Although I wasn’t proficient in this technique yet, I didn’t have  any  other methods. With my current magic power, I’m not able to use
several of the larger spells. With this method, I would be able to conserve some magic power.

Bi Er felt a power pressure produced from my body, especially from the formidable power gathering at my magic staff. He did not know that this was magic. His team formed a powerful defensive formation.

I used my spirit to tell Dong Ri to ready his bow. This is our only opportunity. We absolutely cannot be defeated.

I extended my left hand, and concentrated all  of  my remaining magic power into it. My hand emitted a faint golden light. I chanted, “Light Elements, my friends. I request of you, burst forth as endless blaze, annihilate the enemy before you.”
This was a rank seven light spell, Flames of Light Engulfing the Heavens.

Following the incantation, light elements flooded a large area of the sky as flames of light, as if they were surrounding us. Before this attack, Bi Er knew that a pure defense was far too passive, and did not hide his strength, letting out a faint golden radiance from his body. He had his teammates form a defensive line. Holding his knight swords high, he  loudly  shouted, “Spatial Ten Tear Slash!” He hadn’t slashed towards me, but rather at my magic in the sky. The air itself had seemed to have ripped apart, showing ten cracks in the air. The light elements I dispatched had been completely absorbed within those cracks. It seemed he was also a radiant knight. Xiuda truly produces many talented people.

In the audience, Teacher Wen’s complexion had a huge change. He understood what this signified.

This gave me a fright. His Mysterious Slash and my Dimensional Decapitator were very similar except his was much more powerful. I couldn’t hesitate anymore. I hurriedly wielded my magic staff’s explosive power and turned it into a sword of light before slashing at the opponent. This was my ultimate attack. The previous spell was merely used to confuse the opponent. I didn’t know how powerful it would be either. I used this nameless technique with all my strength, consuming nearly all of my magic power as well as my physical strength. Half kneeling, I thought to myself, ‘It’s all up to Dong Ri now.’

Bi Er shouted, “Not good. Be careful everyone.” At the same time, he moved to the front of of his battle squad while holding his knight’s sword horizontally as it emitted a golden light. “Friction Sword Slash.” If he had time to prepare, the outcome would have resulted in a draw. But he had just received a rank 7 spell from me so he didn’t have enough time to react. He couldn’t possibly match the ferociousness of my rank eight fusion attack spell. He will definitely suffer the worst from it.

An explosion was let out on the stage, filling the air with smoke. A part of the stage was destroyed. The intense vibrating power threw me towards toward the rear. Xiu Si held me, keeping me in place. At that moment, I had released my true killing blow. It was also the final winning strike.

Five faint lights and shadows appeared from behind me and Xiu Si and flew into the smoke. Immediately, groaning voices came from the smoke. My heart was overjoyed. We had won.

Not bad. The lights and shadows just now were something I ordered. Rather, it was Dong Ri that was always waiting for an opportunity. He had gathered all of his battle spirit and magic power into these five arrows. With his elven eyesight in a situation where no one could see clearly, the arrows had become our ultimate attack.

Duke Bi Qi and Teacher Wen were both standing on the spectator’s platform. The smoke gradually faded away. Bi Er’s companions were painfully lying on the floor, their  left shoulders all pierced with a short arrow. Bi Er was using his knight sword to support his body. Similarly, his left shoulder was also pierced with a short arrow.

Dong Ri shouted, “Zhang Gong, we’ve won!”

Just as we were about to celebrate, Bi Er’s voice resounded, “Although I admire your strategy and strength, you still can’t win.”
Bi Er slowly rose, the spectators exclaimed in surprise. He used his right hand to pull out the arrow shaft, not letting out any blood. It was clear that he used battle spirit to seal his acupuncture point.

He faintly said, “Actually, if this was an ordinary match I would have already admit defeat. Because you started of leniently, apart from me, no one else would have been able to resist those magic arrows.” He emphasized those last  two words.

Chapter 28 – The Competition’s End

He coldly looked at me and asked, “Zhang Gong. Am I correct?

Shakily, I stood up from Xiu Si’s embrace. After swaying a second, Xiu Si immediately supported me. I wiped the dried blood from the corner of my mouth and answered with a bitter smile, “You’re right. But nevertheless I still hadn’t achieved my expected result, otherwise you’d be on the floor.”

Bi Er smiled saying, “To tell the truth, I really admire you, because the day before yesterday, you arduously prevailed over the Prince’s team. Of course, I believed that today it would be impossible for you to have any strength left to resist. I certainly didn’t expect that we would actually suffer a loss of four men. If I weren’t fighting for my father’s honor, I certainly wouldn’t still be competing with you.”

I felt that his current words were a mockery. I waved my hand and coldly said, “Stop talking. These words have no use. Did you believe that we would lose the will to fight? Are you certain you will win? Then come. We will not concede. Beat me until I can no longer stand.” Xiu Si and Dong Ri supported me from my left and right side.

I whispered in a voice only they could hear, “I can no longer fight. You two go. You must defeat him.” Dong Ri loosed his bowstring as fast as lightning, each draw showing an afterimage of an arrow flying straight toward Bi Er.

Bi Er smiled dimly and said, “Still have tricks up your sleeve?” His hand was not idle, quickly intercepting arrows flying towards him with his knight sword. The elf arrows’ powerful impacts forced Bi Er to step back. He couldn’t help but praise
it,”Such great arrow technique, you are the best archer I’ve ever seen. I am unable to avoid your arrows at all. If there is an opportunity I will surely have you join my second [Earth Dragon] Corps.

Coming from an enemy, Dong Ri naturally believed Bi Er was mocking him. Putting away his bow, Dong Ri brandished a knight’s longsword and charged at Bi Er. I immediately said, “Xiu Si, go with him. He can’t go alone.”

Xiu Si helped me sit on the ground, and also joined the battle. Although Xiu Si was inferior to Bi Er by only one rank, in a true fight, the difference was even greater. Bi Er effortlessly dealt with their combined attack and simultaneously said, “Zhang Gong, why aren’t you summoning the magic beast you used the other day? That is the only way you can win.”
I bitterly smiled. If I could summon Xiao Jin, would you still be so provocative? Currently, the magic power within my body had been completely exhausted. What could I use to deal with him?

Seeing I did not reply Bi Er naturally guessed that I was unable to summon Xiao Jin and strengthened his assault. Just as he was about to finish Xiu Si and Dong Ri, I hurriedly said, “Xiu Si hold him back, Dong Ri shoot arrows!”

Hearing my words, Dong Ri withdrew  from  the  fray  and readied his bow, letting loose an arrow. He couldn’t have given Bi Er a greater  headache.  Bi  Er  loudly  yelled,  “Profound Thunder Leopard sword technique – Furious Leopard’s Violent Thunder!” The knight’s sword in his hand turned into a barrage of arrows and casted them towards Dong  Ri  and  Xiu  Si.  Dong Ri’s arrows were shattered the Bi Er’s sword barrage. Xiu  Si blocked off a majority of its power. The two were sent flying simultaneously by the tyrannical force of the  blow.  A  rain  of blood scattered, filling the sky.

At the seats for distinguished guests, Teacher Wen and Dike Bi Qi were still standing.

When I saw Xiu Si and Dong Ri again, they were lying on the floor next to me, covered all over with cuts and bruises. Dong Ri had already lost consciousness. Xiu Si wasn’t completely lucid. His armor was smashed and scattered. The knight sword was barely in his grasp.

It’s over. It’s all over. Are we truly unable to defeat Bi Er?
Bi Er advanced two steps and said with an apologetic voice, “Forgive me. I hadn’t meant to use such a great maneuver. As Dong Ri’s arrows are truly difficult to deal with, I had no choice but to use that technique. You should now concede.”

The only person that could currently move was me. I cannot lose. Never in my entire life had I thirsted more for victory. In the face of such a difficult victory, I had unexpectedly stood up. Looking coldly at Bi Er, I tremblingly lifted my magic staff and began chanting, “Oh Mighty God of Creation, I humbly request your assistance. Use your endless power and open my life’s origin.” Just as I said this, a tall shadow of a man appeared behind me and used his palm to chop at my neck. I groaned and fainted onto the ground.

It was Teacher Wen that appeared at that crucial moment. He emotionally held me as I was fainting, murmuring, “Foolish child, how are you so stupid? How could you possible use life magic? If I were a step slower, I would have eternally been unable to forgive myself.” Tears flowed from the corners of
Teacher Wen’s eyes. Truly, I had wanted to use life magic to arouse my latent life energy. However, the damage would have been at least the loss of half of my life’s energy. Even so I had wanted to pay the cost of my life. It was fortunate that Teacher Wen had heard my incantation in time to stop me.

The audience observing the fight were in a  tremendous uproar. A great many people recognized Li Ke Wen. They all loudly shouted, “Foul! Foul!”

The referee walked over and respectfully asked, “Honored Principal, What are you…?”

Teacher Wen held me and stood up. He waved his hand, saying, “I conceded on behalf of the Brilliance Team.” He
turned his head toward Bi Er and said, “I will go to your father and acknowledge my error.” Bi Er had wanted to say something, but seeing Wen’s remorseful complexion he had refrained from saying anything.

The competition ended with our crushing defeat.

I regained consciousness .Where is this? Such an unfamiliar place. I turned my sore neck and looked around. It was a very large room. Apart from mine there were four more beds, each with a member of the Brilliant Battle Squad lying in them. Gao De and Xing Ao were chatting. As for Dong Ri and Xiu Si, I didn’t know whether they were sleeping or still knocked out.

I painfully groaned, Xing Ao said, “Ah, Zhang Gong is awake!
Boss Zhang Gong, how are you feeling?” Huh? When have I become your boss?

I weakly said, “I’m not dead yet. How did we get here? What happened in our last match?”

Xing Ao sighed and started talking about what happened after we lost consciousness.

It turned out that after the competition had concluded, King Xiuda had heard of our tenacious spirit and had us specially recover inside the Imperial Palace under the treatment of imperial physicians. Something else that amazed me was that Duke Bi Qi hadn’t pressed Teacher Wen for an apology. He had only said that the matter was over.

Hearing that Teacher Wen hadn’t been humiliated, I let out a long sigh and said with regret, “This is all because I failed accomplish what was expected of me. It seems the path I must walk is still quite long.”

Xing Ao chuckled and sincerely said, “That’s enough, Zhang Gong. Right now, I am dead set on serving you. With our strength we actually managed to beat the Prince’s Squad. That was something that already surprised me, but even more so you three had managed to almost defeat the Wind Dragon Squad. I heard from Teacher Wen that had he not stopped you, you would have used life magic. You are truly too competitive. If it weren’t for you, I fear our combined strength would have been far too lacking. When we prevailed over the Prince’s squad, Gao De and I, even Boss Xiu Si had decided that we must to follow and accompany you on your adventures. We would follow no other person but you.

Chapter 29 – A Journey’s Preparation

Xing Ao’s words gave me a burst of warmth. Smiling, I said, “Be at ease. We’re all part of the same battle squad, so I’ll never forget any of you. Dong Ri and Xiu Si, what’s the situation?”

“Although the injuries were very severe, they weren’t life threatening. So we’ll be fine after some rest. Enough talk. You should go rest now and I’ll call you once it’s time to eat.”

“Alright, I’m really struggling to keep my eyes open, so I’ll sleep first.” All of the problems have been resolved. While not perfect, it was still satisfactory. Feeling relaxed and at ease, I quickly entered the land of dreams.
After an unknown amount of time passed, I smelled a fragrant scent. The alluring scent which woke me from my dreams. I opened my eyes in a dazed manner. Wa! Everyone is already eating right now. I feebly asked, “Ah, is there any for me? I’m so hungry.”

Teacher Wen was also present in the room. After seeing that I had awoken, he smiled and said, “You awoke just as I was about to call you. You truly are too gluttonous. Get up and eat then.” A maid helped me into a half sitting, half lying position before putting a small table over the bed. She brought over a bowl of thick soup and a few pastries.

I shamefully said, “I’m sorry Teacher Wen, I  didn’t accomplish the mission.”
Teacher Wen lightly shook his head saying, “Child, you have already done extraordinarily well. However, in the future you can’t rashly use your Life Magic, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to face Lao Yun. Bi Qi isn’t that unreasonable either. If it had been a fair match, we definitely would have won. In  fact,  losing might not necessarily be a bad thing for you. Your defeat has let you all learn where you are lacking. So in the future you must diligently practice. Let’s eat now.” His last few words were directed at everyone.

I was already unable to speak anymore due to the excessive amount of drool in my mouth. The pale yellow soup’s aroma assaulted my nostrils as I drank. Wa! So tasty! I couldn’t help but ask, “What soup is this? It’s so delicious!”

Xiu Si answered, “This a secret recipe of the Royal  Court called the Immortal Soup. It was made using numerous kinds of wild animals, mushrooms, ancient mountain ginseng, reishi mushrooms, young deer antlers, fleece-flower root and many other precious high-grade medicinal ingredients and stewed for
a long time. It’s extremely expensive! But this time it’s for you. Haha.”

My face blushed red as I mumbled to myself, “How can you say it’s only for me? Aren’t you all drinking it too?” Everyone burst into laughter from amusement. I couldn’t help but laugh as well, and only stopped after it began hurting. Like this thick soup, our companionship was covering the room. After going through a trial of life and death together, our relationship has grown much closer.

Like a tornado, I quickly finished my food while everyone else was still eating. I looked around and saw that Dong Ri was the slowest eater of them all. I asked him, “Are your pastries tasty?”
Dong Ri laughed when he saw my gluttonous expression and said, “Here.” I accurately caught the pastry he threw with my mouth. I turned around and said to Xiu Si, “Wow! Xiu Si your soup is so different from mine. What kind of flavor does it have?” Nobody could bear it after hearing my words. Gao De had pastry crumbs falling from his mouth. Sorrowfully, I said, “Don’t let your food go to waste if you’re not eating it.”

In the end, Teacher Wen had to break up our circle. “Ah, Zhang Gong. If you want to kill them then you can continue speaking. Their wounds will open up at this rate. You should just eat a bit less since your body is already so weak. Eating too much will actually be bad for you.”

After hearing Teacher Wen’s words, I could only lie down in dissatisfaction. I’ve never eaten such good food before. I’ll definitely eat a lot more during the next meal. When no one was paying attention, I stealthily told the maid to have the chef prepare more food for me next time.

Every day we had a great nourishing meal and soon the majority of everyone’s injuries were healed. After 10 or so days, we had basically fully recovered. However, I really didn’t want to recover so quickly. I still hadn’t eaten enough of the Royal Palace’s gourmet food!

Today Teacher Wen brought us to see the king after seeing that we had nearly fully recovered. I thought it would be like this. We couldn’t possibly have eaten such good foods for free. Obviously, we had to pay our respects to him.

I felt that the royal palace was very similar to a maze. In just a few minutes I had already become confused. The others weren’t faring any better either.

We arrived in front of an extremely grand and magnificent building. I heard from Teacher Wen that this was the King of Xiuda’s reception hall. After everyone entered, Teacher Wen instructed us all to kneel down. We followed him and shouted out ‘Long Live the King! Long Live the King! Long Live the King!’ After finish shouting this, I stealthily lifted my head and stole a glance.

This is the King of Xiuda? Sitting on the royal throne was a gorgeously dressed man that looked to be in his 70’s. He was sitting upright with lights glittering in his eyes.

“No need to be so polite. You may all rise.”
Xiuda’s King clearly recognized our worth as he asked us if we wished to take a position as government officials. No  one uttered a word for a long time. I discovered that they were all looking at me. Ah, what are you all doing looking at me? I’m not even a citizen of Xiuda, yet I’m still forced to wear the crown of their boss on my head! You should decide for yourselves. It’s only that we are still young and the tournament has shown us how inadequate our skills are. We still had much to learn. Their future martial skills will definitely be of service to the kingdom. Seeing this, Teacher Wen secretly chuckled.

Fortunately, the King of Xiuda was really open minded. He didn’t pose any difficulties for us at all. He only said a few words of encouragement before letting us take our leave.

We finally returned to Teacher Wen’s small wooden cabin. Although there weren’t any delicious foods left, I still felt good here due to all of the freedom here.

After returning, the five of us were inseparable. Every day we would train both our bodies and our martial skills together. I taught them some of the basics of light magic while  also learning a lot from them and Teacher Wen. Time quickly passed by and unknowingly, three months passed by.

Although I didn’t want to separate from my close comrades, I still had to go accomplish my mission. I found Teacher Wen and told him, “Teacher, thank you for instructing and taking care of me these past few days. I think it’s time for me to depart now and accomplish the mission entrusted to me by Teacher Di.”

Teacher Wen patted my shoulders and said with a sigh, “Truthfully, I don’t want to part with you. Right now you’re just like my own student.”

Smiling, I said, “I have always been your student. I will still return in the future and visit all of you.”

Teacher Wen sighed and said, “Fine then. Go talk with everyone else and pack up. You can leave tomorrow.” I nodded before heading toward the courtyard. Unexpectedly,  they weren’t sad at all after I told them that I had to leave to finish the mission Teacher Di entrusted to me. This made me a bit depressed. I returned to my room to pack up my things and prepared to set off on my journey the next day.

Chapter 30 – Visiting Shan Yun

After I returned to my room, I sat on the bed, thinking about all that happened during my time in Xiuda. Not only did I meet Big Brother Zhan Hu there, but my magic power had also reached a new level. I also learned a few simple martial skills. My Ascending Dragon’s Judgement had nearly reached the realm of purification. I should roughly have a knight’s strength. Everyone was amazed at the rate of my battle spirit advancement. Only I knew that my battle spirit and powerful spirit power were inseparable.

Now I will depart. Oh, that’s right… speaking of Big Brother Zhan Hu, I still hadn’t looked for his father on his behalf. I’ll take a trip to the Prince’s Mansion.

I casually heard that the Prince’s Mansion was in  the southeast of Xiuda city. What name would I have to use so that the Prince would see me? As I was thinking of this, I recalled someone, Shan Yun Xiuda. He’s Big Brother Zhan Hu’s elder
brother and we had exchanged hands before. Requesting to see him should be fine. I’ll see how the situation is  first  and whether or not I can see the Prince.

I arrived at the Prince’s Mansion gate and asked for a servant to help me request an audience with the young Prince Shan Yun. Not a formal meeting, but to personally meet with Shan Yun. Seeing my happy appearance, Shan Yun had also smiled, “Ah, Zhang Gong it’s you! A rare visitor, indeed. Come quickly. Let’s go in and have a chat.”

I courteously said, “This is truly embarrassing. I didn’t mean to bother you.”

“Don’t mention it. In all my life, those I had admired the most
were the strong. Only those stronger than me can accompany me and be my friend. Regardless of what you think, I already regard you as my friend. Haha.” He was truly  forthright. Hearing his words, I was secretly happy.

Smiling, I said, “I am also very happy to have you as  my friend. The match the other day was because of good luck, we won by a fluke. Had you fused with your magic beast at the start, I fear we would have been finished.” While we were talking, we entered the Prince’s Mansion. It was very large. The mansion’s architecture was extremely grand, encasing the courtyard. Although it wasn’t as large as the Imperial Palace, it can also be said to be a small maze.

Shan Yun said, “About that, your magical beast is very formidable too. What kind of magical beast is it?”
Xiao Jin was currently still lying dormant inside my body. I scratched my head, and embarrassingly said, “It’s a snake type magic beast. It grew relatively big, that’s all. Although its might is not small, it spends far too much of my magic power. After that match, it fell dormant, absorbing my magic power. In fact, on that day had you persevered a moment longer, it would no longer have had any power. That’s why I said winning was just as result of luck.”

Shan Yun brought me to his room then we chatted about all sorts of things for a bit. From our chat, I could tell that Shan Yun and big brother Zhan Hu had very similiar natures.

Clenching my teeth, I resolved myself.
“Big brother Shan Yun, I have a matter to discuss with you.
Don’t you have a younger brother?”

Hearing my words, Shan Yun excitedly asked me, “Do you have news of Jing Yun?”

“Wa! Settle down a bit. I can’t endure the strength of  a Radiant Knight.” Embarrassed, Shan Yun released his hands.

I continued speaking, “Actually, I came to Xiuda City as his replacement to tell you all that he is well. I’m also here to see how his home is for him.”

Shan Yun emotionally said, “Then why didn’t he come himself? Where is he right now?”

I humbly shook my head and said, “I can only tell you that he is well right now. I promised him I wouldn’t tell anyone about where he is right now. He still hasn’t settled his previous matter. Wait until I help him settle it, then he will definitely return.”

Shan Yun said with a sigh, “Ah, it’s all because of his Earth Dragon Xiao Zhan. Jing Yun truly is too foolish. At that time we weren’t any good either. We didn’t show enough care for him to the extent that he left a message and ran away. Actually, father didn’t blame him at all. Who could possibly never make a mistake? Jing Yun was the most gifted of us three brothers, but it’s sad that he’s now like this. Since you promised to not reveal
his whereabouts, I won’t force you. When you see him you must tell him to hurry home and that everyone misses him.”

I nodded and said, “I’m relieved then. I’ll go back and explain this to big brother Zhan Hu. I forgot to tell you, me  and him have already become sworn brothers. You’re my big brother’s elder brother so you’re also my elder brother. Haha! Wait until big brother Zhan Hu reaches the level of Radiant Knight, then he will definitely return. That day isn’t too far off either. His Highness the Prince, how is he? Is his body healthy?”

Shan Yun said, “Father’s body is outstandingly  robust.  It’s just that he’s aged a lot. Although he hasn’t said it, I know that he really misses Jing Yun.”
I said, “That’s right! Big brother Shan Yun, don’t tell  the Prince about Big Brother Zhang Hu yet. Give me one years’ time after I depart from here, I will definitely help you bring back big brother Zhan Hu.”

“Alright. You’ve convinced me. I’m extremely grateful to you that you worried so much about our family’s matters. Don’t hesitate to ask if you need anything in the future. I will support you with all my strength. This is the token of my second legion. Within Xiuda it has a lot of influence. Hold on to it and use it properly in the future.”

I also dropped formalities and extended my arm toward him, “Right, Big Brother Shan Yun, I will be leaving first. I  am leaving tomorrow. I still have to tell everyone else.
Shan Yun accompanied me to the gates then I returned to the academy on the same road from which I came.

The wooden room had one more person, Hong Xue Hua Lun. Last time, it was because of her that we were stirred to compete. Here she comes again. Hopefully she won’t cause any trouble this time.

Not waiting for me to say anything, she called out to me first, “Zhang Gong, you returned. I heard you are leaving tomorrow. I am truly sorry for what happened previously.”

Aside her, Teacher Wen smiled and said, “Today you’ve already apologized many times. You aren’t to blame for this.”

I indifferently replied, “Hello Miss Hua Lun. Dong Ri is my good brother. You ought to know his temperament, so if you truly like him, then you must properly take care of him in the future. I don’t want my brother to suffer any grievances. I’ll be going in to rest then. I still have to set off tomorrow.”

My playful words caused Dong Ri and Hong Xue blush a deep red. Even the taciturn Xiu Si smiled, saying, “Zhang Gong’s words are truly straightforward, I’m impressed. Haha.” Even Xing Ao and Gao De were loudly jeering.

Hong Xue said with a red face, “There’s no one else here so you’re all bullying me.” Although her mouth said these words, my profound words have already been printed within her heart. Hong Xue secretly resolved herself that from now on, she must make Dong Ri accept her and quickly make him stop feeling
inferior. She will fearlessly confront the future.

However, Dong Ri was thinking of something entirely different and that was to escape.

Chapter 31 – Traveling Together

At dawn, I finished packing my baggage and arrived  at Teacher Wen’s room to bid him farewell. Teacher Wen handed a letter to me, saying, “This is for Lao Lun and everyone there. Be careful on your journey. Regardless of whether or not you finish your mission, you should return a bit earlier. You don’t have to come here. Going out for such a long time, your family must be very worried. Remember to stay safe.”

My eyes grew hot as I recalled all these past days. I held Teacher Wen’s hand, saying, “Teacher Wen, I will definitely come back to see you. Take care of your health. I’m going now.” Teacher Wen gave me a sly smile and said nothing else.

I did not see Dong Ri and the rest. Forget it, I won’t wait for them. I put my things into my dimensional pocket and wore my clothes. It’s time to leave this place. I spent about a year here and am reluctant to leave.

While I walked, I recalled all of the friends I made here. My heart felt a sense of loss. I shook my head and said to myself, “Don’t think about it anymore. Everyone has their own path. Because when there are meetings, there are departures. I’ll still see them in the future”. What!? That sign in front of me seems awfully familiar. I approached it and took a look. It’s the Mercenary Guild. I recalled my first mission and still hadn’t known whether or not I had failed it. I couldn’t help but smile bitterly. Oh, that’s right. I’ve been here for such a long time and I still hadn’t sought out Long Meng. Because I’ve been so busy, I had quickly forgotten about him. How embarrassing… I’ll go in and try my luck. If we meet, it’ll be because of fate’s will.

Entering the Mercenary Guild’s gate, I noticed it was much larger than the past guild buildings I’ve been to. It seems the city was of a different magnitude, it even influenced many industries. I looked in all directions. My luck couldn’t possibly be this good. In the middle of this noisy crowd, I saw a familiar, tall figure.

I shouted with a loud voice, “Long Meng!”

That tall figure trembled and turned his head. Seeing me, he shouted with pleasant surprise, “Zhang Gong, it’s you! You came. For such a long period of time, where did you go off to? I believed you had fallen for those bandit’s trap.” After  saying this, he ran over to me and tightly grabbed both my arms.

I softly sighed and pretended to be depressed, saying, “I didn’t come across a trap, I only hadn’t been outside for a long time. That’s why I hadn’t come until now. I am truly sorry.”
Long Meng laughed straightforwardly and said, “It’s no problem. It’s fine as long as you came. The amount of missions I’ve completed these past days were no small amount. I’m already a D rank mercenary. What are you doing now? We were looking for a place to go drink a cup.”

“I can’t, I came here to meet with you. I have to go and complete the assignment my teacher had given me. Since I can’t go now, next time if matters aren’t urgent, I’ll definitely accompany you.”

Long Meng pressingly said with a loud voice, “That won’t do. It’s difficult to see each other. How could I let you leave so quickly? I want to go with you. You are the person I  had admired the most in my life. From now on, I won’t leave you.” Please, no. I’m not some unmarried young woman. Is my sex appeal really that great?

I thought about it and then I brought him aside to the corner. His voice was too loud. I didn’t want to attract a crowd. I whispered to him, “Long Meng. You should know by now that our strengths differ greatly. If I bring you along this time, you aren’t going to be of help. It could even put you  in  great danger.”

“I’m not afraid of danger, so bring me along alright. I beg of you, I’ll even listen to whatever you say. Is this not enough?” He really is a passionate person. Ah, what’s to be done?  That’s right, there’s still that method. I sinisterly smiled and said, “Then how about this, I’ll introduce you to a great teacher and you’ll learn martial skills from him. After you’ve had some accomplishments, then you can come with me.”

Long Meng doubtfully asked, “A great teacher? That’s fine.
I’ve always wanted a master to worship. But my martial skill is too mediocre to even have a master look at me. Is there truly a good teacher?”

I didn’t answer him, instead I borrowed a pen from the front desk and wrote a letter. I handed it over to him and explained, “Hold onto this. Go to the Knight’s Academy and look for Principal Li Ke Wen. Hand this letter to him and he will make the arrangements. If the guards do not let you in, just use my name and it’ll be fine.”

Long Meng took the letter and murmured, “Knight Academy. That’s the martial heaven I have always yearned to study at. Can I really? I truly thank you Zhang Gong. Then when will you come find me?”
This was a difficult question for me. I didn’t know when I would return either. After muttering to myself for a bit, I told him, “I’ll come find you in three years. You must diligently practice.” Anyways, when the time comes, I can go visit Teacher Wen too. Haha! How could I have possibly known after returning three years later, I had already experienced many great changes.

Long Meng reluctantly parted from me as I walked toward the city gate.

I walked with my head lowered. Suddenly, I felt a formidable grandeur blocking my path. I attentively retreated a few steps back. As I raised my head, I was shocked.
A row of figures was standing in front of me. Not a single one of them was lacking. It was Xiu Si, Dong Ri, Xing Ao and Gao De. It seems they have come to send me off. “You’ve all come, and here I was thinking you weren’t going to see me off.” Naturally, I was exceptionally happy, but I was left staring at them slack-jawed once I heard their words.

Xiu Si said, “How are you so slow? We already waited half a day for you. Let’s go. Lead us, Captain.” He still wore a sinister smile after he finished talking.

“What? What is this about us setting off? You guys, it couldn’t be…?”

After glancing at each other, they all simultaneously began
grinning and said in unison, “We want to go with you. Haha!”

After hearing them utter these words in unison, I still clearly didn’t fully understand. I just mechanically said, “What has Teacher Wen done now? He consented to this?”

Xing Ao said smiling, “Of course he agreed. Otherwise we wouldn’t be here. Let’s go. Captain, ah no, everyone unanimously decided to have our Brilliant Battle Squad become the Zhang Gong’s  Bro Harem Brilliant Mercenary Company. It is better to travel like this. When we run out of money, we can make some spending money. You are the commander. Xiu Si is the vice commander.”

It  was  only then  that  I understood  the  meaning behind
Teacher Wen’s furtive smile when I was leaving. It looks like that old man wants his disciples to go on a journey with me. Pretty good. With this many people our safety will increase by a lot. Furthermore, they all possess formidable strength.

Sighing, I said, “Then there’s truly nothing to be done about it then. Let’s go then everyone.” They all let out a cheer since they originally thought I wouldn’t be willing to take them along with me. This time they’re all very satisfied.

Just like this, we cheerfully set foot onto the road of our true journey.

Chapter 32 – Arriving At Dalu

I lead them straight towards the border of Xiuda and Aixia. At the beginning they thought I had walked in the opposite direction. It was only after I explained that I had to go find someone that they understood

I promised Big Brother Zhan Hu that after my business in Xiuda was over, I would first find him and tell him about the circumstances of his family. Although we had to travel a farther distance, they didn’t say anything.

On the journey, I felt that they only came to  sightsee. Although Xing Ao and Gao De were each nearly thirty years old, both acted like children. And whenever Dong Ri found something new, he immediately talked about it with others. Likewise the always earnest Xiu Si had relaxed very much.

After an unceasing trudge, we finally arrived at our destination. Just as we entered the mountain, we encountered some trouble. Twenty or so people jumped down from the trees and surrounded us. Their boss yelled, “Halt! Is this somewhere you guys should be going? Carefully hand over your money and afterwards turn back. Otherwise you can’t blame uncle  for killing you.”

It seems that we’ve run into Big Brother’s subordinates. I walked in front to take a look. Isn’t this the guy that was at Big Brother’s side from last time? I didn’t know if  he  still recognized me. Without waiting for me to say anything, he loudly said, “Ah! Is that Second Boss?”

Shocked I violently fell and said, “When did I become the Second Boss?”

That bandit said, “Ah, It really is you, Second Boss.” Calling me this, when I looked at everyone, they suspiciously glanced at me; I quickly grew faint. Please don’t think of me as  some bandit leader.

“Don’t call me the Second Boss. Is big brother Zhan Hu well?”

“You’re the sworn brother of our Boss, so of course you’re the Second Boss. The Boss talks about you often daily. You’ve returned now so hurry up and go. Brothers, open up a path for the Second Boss.”
What happened afterwards is unclear. We just followed the twenty or so people into the mountain while I explained to everyone the events through which I came to know Zhan Hu. They all wanted to quickly meet this Heaven Knight who could match my martial arts.

Just as we arrived into the village, Zhan Hu came out and welcomed us. It seems that his scouts reported truly fast. I quickly rushed up and stopped to embrace him. I emotionally said, “Big Brother, I’ve returned.”

“Good, good, good. It’s good that you’ve returned. Go. We’ll talk at home.”

After returning to Zhan Hu’s thatched cottage, I introduced
everyone to him. Big brother was extremely happy to meet others from his hometown so he brought out a  scrumptious feast in our honor.

At the wine table, seeing Big Brother’s impatient expression, I knew what he wanted to ask. I smiled and said, “Big brother, your house is in good condition. After we finished eating, we’ll talk in detail.” Zhan Hu immediately calmed down.

During this meal, everyone was in very high spirits. Everyone called Zhan Hu, Big Brother. Today Zhan Hu  intentionally drank less. I also only tasted it.

Night time. Everyone had already entered into the land of pleasant dreams. Zhan Hu and I went to a small hill. On top of
the hill I began explaining the events that happened in the short period of time I had been away. He was extraordinarily happy when he heard that his second brother already reached the rank of a Radiant Knight and he was very anxious when he heard I received a serious injury.

“Big Brother, Big Brother Shan Yun said they really miss you. All along they haven’t blamed you. Will you return  home earlier? He promised for the time being that he won’t speak of you to His Majesty the Prince. I feel like you should return. It has already been many years.

Zhan Hu sighed and said, “I really should go back and take a look. Father is so old now. This unfilial son mustn’t let that old man grieve any longer. Once you’ve obtained the Holy Sword, I’ll go back.”
“Ah? Big Brother, you want to go too? You don’t need to. You should immediately return to Xiuda.”

“Foolish brat, is the Holy Sword really that easy to obtain? You are certain to come across danger after danger. If I don’t accompany you, how would I feel at ease? You don’t need to urge me, as I intend to.”

“Big brother……..” I emotionally embraced his  thick  and broad shoulders speechlessly.

When we departed the next day, we had a new  member among our ranks. Everybody held Zhan Hu in extremely high esteem since he was my big brother. Thus, we set off on a long journey of learning. Originally it was supposed to be a one man
journey, but now it has turned into a journey of six people. I don’t know if this would go against Teacher Di’s intention but everybody was too enthusiastic for me to refuse them. I had already tried to persuade Big Brother to stay and lead his village. However, his answer was too good. He said that in these last few years the village had saved up not a small amount of money so he would tell them to not go out “hunting” while he was gone. What else could I say to him?

Like that, we head straight to the Kena province of the Dalu Kingdom. This was the only clue that Teacher Di had given me. The route was not short at all. The Kingdom of Dalu was on the other side of Xiuda. In other words, we have to pass through the entire Kingdom of Xiuda. When we set out, everyone picked a fine horse from Zhan Hu’s bandit village.

Apart from me, they were all knights, each capable of expertly controlling a horse. I have never rode on a horse before, yet they gave me the tallest, strongest horse. Just as we had started, without even traveling far, my whole body ached. Do I use
battle spirit to protect my body? I could no longer stand it and decided this time to learn how to ride a horse. Following everyone’s continuous guidance, I can now barely keep up and I no longer feel tired. I originally thought of talking about letting me use teleportation magic to follow them, but everyone unanimously disagreed. That is why I had no choice but  to suffer through this bitter hardship.

After nearly two months of trudging along, we finally arrived at the border of the Dalu Kingdom. I looked at the map. This province was still 400 kilometers away. In front of us should be the Lunwa city.

I faced everyone and said, “Once we’ve entered the city ahead of us we’ll rest properly for two days. This short period of madly rushing forward has nearly exhausted me to death.”
Xing Ao replied with a smile, “Ah, the magnificent magister is so exhausted. What a pity that you don’t know wind magic, otherwise you could just fly.”

Xing Ao’s words reminded me of something. As we all continued walking towards Lunwa city, I asked Big  Brother Zhan Hu, “I heard from my teacher once that once your martial skill reaches a certain level, you’ll be able to use your battle spirit to fly. Is that true?”

Zhan Hu replied to me in astonishment, “I didn’t expect you to even know this. It’s possible to fly using battle spirit, but you need to have the strength of at least a Heaven Knight. This is also the origin of the name Heaven Knight.”
I excitedly asked, “Then you and Xiu Si can fly?”

Xiu Si interrupted from the side saying, “That’s right. But I can only fly about five kilometers before my battle spirit is exhausted. Big Brother Zhan Hu should be able to fly a bit longer.”

“It’s not that much further.” Big Brother Zhan Hu modestly said.

I yearningly said, “I truly envy you. Ah! It really feels nice to fly in the sky.”

Chapter 33 – Resting At Lunwa

Smiling, Zhan Hu said, “What’s so good about it? We can’t fly like you mages, slow and lasting while admiring the scenery. Using battle spirit to fly consumes it quickly. That’s why we rush forward with all our might. We can’t appreciate the feeling of flying at all.”

“In any case, being able to fly is great. I don’t know when my martial skill will reach such a level.”

Dong Ri said, “Enough, you. You’re already frightening enough. You aren’t even twenty years old yet,  and  you’ve already become a magister. You still want to become a sky knight? You’re asking for too much.”
Dong Ri’s words were approved by everyone. Even Zhan Hu said that I shouldn’t reach too far and concentrate on learning magic. Although I was the strongest in the company, I was youngest apart from Dong Ri. What could I say to them? I could only obediently let the matter of flying go.

Lunwa City was the first city we arrived at in the Dalu Kingdom. It truly deserves to be called a kingdom of commerce. Within this border town, trade was flourishing greatly.  The main street was bustling with noise and excitement. It seemed that everyone was immersed in the pleasures of buying and selling.

We first looked for a relatively good hotel to settle in. In any case, we weren’t lacking money; I hadn’t even made a dent in the thousand diamond coins that Teacher Di had given  me when I left home. Not to mention the sizable sum that Big Brother Zhan Hu brought along. After eating dinner, we all gathered together to discuss our future course of action.

I spread out the map on the table. Pointing at the area representing Dalu, I said, “Everyone look. Right now we are here. Four hundred kilometers south is where the  Kena province is. Teacher Di said that the holy sword was somewhere in a valley in the Kena province. We will have to search through these forests. Does anyone have any questions?”

Zhan Hu said, “This map of yours is too general. I feel like it would be best to buy a map of the Kena province. We should mark the places where it could be and search them one by one. How about it?” Everyone immediately approved of Zhan Hu’s ideas.

Xiu Si said, “Right now, this is all we can do. Our clues are too few. We can only search by throwing a net and thoroughly search every bit. No matter what we can’t leave out any
suspicious areas.”

Dong Ri said, “Currently with our strength, we should be able to deal with any danger. What we should be most worried about is not finding the place.”

I let out a breath and said, “Alright! Let’s go Dong Ri. First we’ll find buy a map of Kena province and then we’ll discuss this further. Everyone else should rest first. After we come back, let’s go eat.”

Dong Ri and I arrived at the bustling main street. A few casual questions led us to a small map store. I looked  everywhere inside and saw maps of every place. The shopkeeper walked by and asked, “Sirs, where would you like a map of? The maps at
this store are the most complete. We basically have maps of the whole continent, even the West Continent is no exception.”

I said surprised, “Oh! You even have maps of the West Continent? Could you let me look at them?” The demon race and beast clans were a mystery to me. That is why I wanted to see if there was a difference in the terrain of the east continent.

The shopkeeper brought over a small cylinder sealed on both sides. Opening a side revealing a map made from sheepskin rolled inside. It appeared a bit yellow. It should be quite a few decades old.

After handing over the map to me, he said, “Sir, this was passed down from my ancestry. This is a map of the West
Continent from two hundred years ago. Currently, the West Continent should have changed to some extent, but its approximate locations should still be correct.”

I took the map. It was drawn meticulously. There were many small regions on it. On the middle-left of the map I found the demon race’s capital, Sadan City. I couldn’t help but recall the stunningly beautiful woman of the demon race that I came across. Could she be there now? Thinking of her stunningly beautiful appearance, I could not help but stupidly space out.

“Zhang Gong. Zhang Gong, what are you doing? What are you looking for on the map of the West Continent? Quickly finish our business here.” Dong Ri reminded me from the side.
I was roused from my fantasy, “Ah? What did you say? Oh, I know. Shopkeeper, Could you bring us a map of the Kena province? I also want this map of the West Continent. How much will it cost altogether?”

The shopkeeper said, “A map of the Kena province is two copper coins. This map of the West Continent will cost you two diamond coins.”

Dong Ri said loudly, “Two diamond coins? You may as well rob us. Zhang Gong, give that map back to him.”

I held out my hand to block Dong Ri. From my chest pocket, I took out my amethyst card and handed it over to the shopkeeper. With a look of the amethyst card, the shopkeeper
knew that we weren’t any ordinary people. With a  smile reaching across his face, he said, “Truly, this humble man had eyes but could not recognize Mt Tai. I will gift the map of the Kena province to you, but for this West Continent map…”

I impatiently waved my hand and said, “Its price is its price. Hurry up!” Seeing that I truly wanted to buy this, Dong Ri said no more. After the shopkeeper finished the payment with the amethyst card, he respectfully returned it to me. I placed the map of the West Continent in my dimensional pocket. With the map of the Kena province in hand, Dong Ri and I returned to the inn.

While walking, I asked Dong Ri, “When you left, you didn’t tell that little sister, Hong Xue, did you? Haha.”
With a bitter smile, Dong Ri said, “Don’t make fun of me about that. When I came, I didn’t tell her. What is the status of her house? And what is my status? It’s not possible for us.

“That’s enough already. You’re saying it  again.  We’ve  told you how many times? Don’t feel so inferior. You  are  no different from other people. Just say whether or not you like Hong Xue!”

Dong Ri’s face grew red and evasively said, “It could happen.”

“Hehe, that’s what you call liking her. I see Hong Xue also really likes you. What could be happier than a harmonious couple? Go after her already. Teacher Wen will surely act as your host. This time, you left without saying anything. Hong
Xue will feel sad not knowing. When we go back you’ll have to go beg for forgiveness!”

Embarrassed, Dong Ri said, “Let’s talk of this when we return!”

On the way, Dong Ri said nothing more. It seems that he was thinking about little sister Hong Xue. I did not bother him further.

Returning to the hotel, Big Brother Zhan Hu saw my holding the map and said with a smile, “You bought it at last! Put it down, let’s go eat first. We’re about to starve. Let’s continue discussing the map after we return.”

We looked for a quiet table to sit at the inn’s restaurant. We ordered an impressive meal and began to comfort our stomachs. In these many days, we did not have a single delicious meal. The meal was eaten in a frenzy and costed no less than forty gold coins. The food truly made our hearts ached!

Chapter 34 – Nature Elves

After we returned to room, I unfolded the newly bought map of the Kena province. Whoa, this Kena Province isn’t small at all. There are eight cities along with many forests and valleys of all sizes.

Xing Ao exclaimed, “There are so many forests and valleys!
How will we ever find it?”

Xiu Si was still calm. He thought about it and said, “Seeing the map as it is, we should split each valley into pieces and search them one by one. We should start this as soon as possible.” As he said this, he pointed at the south most forest of Kena.
Two days later, our party of six arrived at the edge of the Kena province’s Long Jing Forest. Finally, we started our true adventure. Because we were going through forests and valleys, we rode to the closest town by horse and prepared a sufficient amount of food, water, and a few other essential goods for the wilderness. After we advanced to the Long Jing Forest,  we found the food to be too lacking. When we were  hungry, we went hunting.

We did not come across any dangers on our journey. We only encountered the occasional small animal, keeping us company. After the Nth time I took out the map, I said to Zhan Hu, “Big Brother, look. We are currently here. If we continue forward, we’ll enter the depths of the Long Jing Forest.”

Zhan Hu nodded. Suddenly he felt something amiss and turned his head, calling out to everyone, “Everyone, careful! There may be dangers ahead of us.” As he said this, he took out his knight’s sword.

I had also felt a formidable force lingering nearby; I did not know whether it was friend or foe. “Oh Great Light Elements, I request of you to transform into a divine radiance, expel all evil.” This is large area light exorcism spell. A dazzling radiance emitted from my body, enveloping an entire hundred meter radius.

A cold and gloomy voice came from the depths of the forest, “Ignorant humans, who allowed you to come here and sully my sacred, pure lands. If you do not immediately withdraw, you shall forever remain here. This is your final warning.”

Next to me, it was as if Dong Ri was suddenly hit by evil and became distracted. Then he walked to the very front of  the group and deeply bowed his body to the depths of the forest. “Excuse me, are those in front of us, elves?”

As we saw Dong Ri act as such, we did not stop him and only calmly looked at how he would progress.

That gloomy and cold voice returned, “Don’t believe you are extraordinary because you know of our identity. If you do not withdraw, I will launch an assault.”

Dong Ri hastily said, “Wait a moment, I am also an elf.” After hearing Dong Ri’s words, they did not answer. After a moment, a faint silhouette floated out. Its speed was incomparably fast. It gradually floated toward us. It was a very old elf. Not only that but it also seems that he should be an ancient race of forest elves because he had wings. Currently, many elves and half elves no longer had wings.

He came close to us and looked at Dong Ri up and down, saying with disdain, “Your kind can be considered elves? You are merely a human assimilated half-elf. For what purpose have you brought this many humans to this elf forest?”

Standing on the side, I found those words unacceptable and interrupted, “What’s wrong with a half elf? Everyone has life. What is there that is noble or lowly? Old man, did you purchase this forest? Why do you not let us enter? Unless you have a secret.”

Hearing my words, the old elf was enraged. With a wave of his hand, he sent a faint green energy towards me. I was taken aback. Could this be an elf’s natural power? This kind of extraordinary power lies between martial skill and magic. Only pure elves could use it.

I immediately waved my hand, bringing a white energy to face his attack. The formidable power had unexpectedly shocked my body, causing me to sway. This was truly ferocious. I reckon this old elf has at the very least, a Magister’s strength. To think we would come across such a difficult elf.

Seeing me resist his attack, he was very surprised and said, “You aren’t so arrogant after all. It turns out you have a bit of skill.” In his mind he thought to himself, if the people of this party are all this powerful, then this will be truly  hard  to handle.

Xiu Si, who had not said a word all this time, walked over and said to the old elf, “Respected Senior, Greetings. We are the Brilliant Mercenary Company. We came here with no evil intentions. We were only entrusted with a task to find a certain
item. May I ask what this place is?”

Xiu Si words gave this stubborn elder a way out of embarrassment. With slight embarrassment, he said, “This boy is quite courteous. This place is the outskirts of our elf forest. What are you looking for?”

Xiu Si looked at me and I nodded back to him. Xiu Si continued, “It is as such. We are looking for the holy sword. Could you give us directions to a clearer path?”

After hearing our words, the old elf laughed heartily. After a while, he stopped and said, “You want to find the holy sword by yourselves? After all these years, with the innumerable thousands that searched for it, not one had succeeded.”

Hearing that the old elf had unexpectedly know of the holy sword, I hastily asked, “Then do you know where  the  holy sword is?”

The old elf proudly raised his head and said, “Naturally, I know this. If you want me to tell you, that is possible. But first you must help me with a certain matter. After you’ve finished this, I will tell you.

“Alright, tell us. We’ll give it a try.” With the appearance of such an opportunity, we absolutely could not let this go.
Xiu Si unexpectedly said, “Wait a moment. Do you have proof that you truly know the whereabouts of the holy sword? If we complete your task, what’s to be done if you don’t fulfill your promise?”

The old elf’s jaw dropped and said, “You believe everyone is untrustworthy as you humans? We elves are always true to our word. I swear on my identity as an Elder of the Nature Elves that so long as the humans before me repel the Dark Elves’ assault, I will tell them the location of the holy sword. If I break my oath, may the Heaven’s punishment destroy me.” Following his word, his body let out an awe-inspiring grandeur.

Seeing that he hadn’t lied, I said, “Good. We agree. But what is this matter about Dark Elves?”
The old elf looked at me and said, “Dark elves have always been our Nature Elves’ mortal enemy. Originally, our strengths were matched. However, recently, without knowing why, this balance was broken. The Dark Elves power had suddenly increased greatly. Almost all of the Dark Elves’ powers had greatly increased from before. They beat us back, forcing us to retreat step by step. If this continues, we could face the danger of extermination. I am one of the Nature Elves’ elders. I had originally came out hoping to find an old friend of mine and ask for help. I hadn’t expected to come across you.”

Chapter 35 – Elven Dispute

With this said, the elderly elf displayed a human side of him. It appears that he is not incapable of accepting humans. He continued saying, “If it is possible, let us talk as we  walk.” Saying this, he lightly flapped his elf wings forward, leading the way.”

I curiously asked, “How are you certain that  we  aren’t villains? Is it not possible that instead we would help the Dark Elves get rid of you?”

The elderly elf laughed and said, “You are truly a child. Do you know how old I am this year? This year I am 1,446 years old. Those of the elven race are all long lived. I’ve seen a great deal. If I’m not mistaken, what you just used a moment ago should be light magic. In addition, you should at the very least be at the level of a magister. Those that can use light magic are all of pure and virtuous character. That is the reason why I let you help us.”

Dong Ri suddenly interrupted, saying, “Do you know which type of elf I am?” It seemed he wanted to ask about his own life.

The elderly elf smiled and said, “Of course I know. If we’re talking about in general, elves can be divided into two main types. One type is us, nature elves. You are of this type. The other is our enemy, the dark elves. With regards to the number of dark elves on the entire continent, we are the unconditional majority. However with regards to strength, we can only compare the quantity of pure blooded elves. This is because only pure blood elves have the ability to bring out their true fighting strength. For example, you are incapable of using the power of nature.”

Dong Ri somewhat disappointed, said, “Then you don’t know where I specifically came from?”

The elderly elf helplessly said, “There are too many nature elves in this world. If you were a pure elf, I would be able to check. But presently, I’m afraid…”

Seeing Dong Ri’s disappointed appearance, I immediately broke off from this topic and asked, “How many pure blooded elves does each of the two races have? What about fighting strength? “

“Right now the population of pure blooded elves has been greatly thinned out due to many years of campaigning. Each side has about a thousand pure bloods. The Dark Elves already attacked our village this morning. The forest this village is located in is actually the most suitable place on this whole continent for elves to reside in. It’s because of this that the Dark Elves are trying to destroy us.”

With a nod, I said, “Why can’t everybody just live together in harmony? With such a large forest, what’s there to be afraid of 2,000 people? It’s only if you are willing that the rivers of blood will flow.”

The elderly elf sighed and said, “If everyone thought like you did, the world would have no conflict. I find myself liking you more and more, boy.”

“In that case, I don’t dislike you either, old man, haha.” We laughed heartily together.
Xiu Si said, “Senior, how much further until we reach the village? Let’s hurry a bit and avoid needless injuries.”

The elderly elf said, “Alright. Follow me closely.” He turned into a faint shadow and flew onward.

Big Brother Zhan Hu followed him up, carrying Xing Ao on his left hand and Dong Ri on his right. Xiu Si followed closely, carrying Ao De. I ended up leisurely using short distance teleportation to follow them, neither slowly not closely.

Not knowing how far we traveled, the elderly elf stopped and waited for us to come before him. He gave everyone a favorable smile and slowly walked onward.

“In front of us is the village’s rear. Let’s go in and see how it is.”

Turning at a small hill, an elf village reflected into our eyes. What a large village. It’s even larger than Zhan Hu’s bandit village. Busy admiring the scenery, we followed the elderly elf into the village. Everyone seemed to be very busy.

The elderly elf stopped an adult elf and asked, “Shan Nian, what’s the situation?”
The fully grown elf named Shan Nian replied, “Third Elder, you’ve returned. Please go over at once. The Dark Elves’ King is currently engaging with ours. It is practically a melee.

The elderly elf called out to us to advance towards another side of the village. I noticed that all of the elves here have two wings. Their capabilities are much greater than that of outside elves. The majority of the elves had swords as their weapon of choice.

After arriving in front of two battle formations, the battlefield was truly bleak with a dark sky and a black earth. I noticed that there wasn’t much of a difference between the Dark Elves and the Nature Elves. Nature Elves had green hair, blue eyes, and green wings, while Dark Elves had black hair, violet eyes, and black wings. This was the only difference, everything was basically the same between them. They both had similar appearances.

I looked towards the field and saw two adult elves engaged in fierce combat. From their fluctuations of energy, I could tell that they were the kings of each side. On the Nature Elves’ side, there were three elves about the same age as the elderly elf who were anxiously watching this battle.

The elderly elf walked to their side and asked, “What’s the situation?”

A different elderly elf replied, “Third Elder, you’ve returned. We don’t have any reinforcements left and  we’ve  already battled 10 times. Unexpectedly, it has been one-sided the entire time. If our king loses again, I fear they will rush forward and beat us all.” (For the sake of convenient address, the following will be called the Great Elder, Second Elder, Third Elder and the Fourth Elder. The one who brought us over was the Third
Elder.)

Sighing, the Third Elder said, “How did it become like this? Is the difference really that great? Don’t tell me…. is this the day our kind is destroyed?”

I went up to him and comfortingly said, “Don’t worry! We’ll definitely help you.” The Third Elder appreciatively nodded at me and introduced me to the other three elders.

At this moment of intense battle, the Nature Elf King grasped his sword in both hands and shouted, “Venerated nature spirits, heed my call, become a destroying power and annihilate the evil before you —— Nature’s Punishment!” Following this, he slashed with his sword and a wave of green energy that hid the
sky and covered the earth flew towards the Dark Elf King.

In a single breath, the Dark Elf King disdainfully said, “It’s been so many years yet we’re still going through this routine. You won’t do anything else so I’ll let you see my ultimate technique. Endless evil, endless resentment, become the endless darkness and devour everything —— Endless Devourer.” An ash black smog started pouring out of the Dark Elf King’s body, covering a large area and charged towards the Nature Elf King with a mournful cry. The two energies opposed each other in the sky. The energy emitted by the Nature Elf King was compressed little by little and forced back. It was clearly falling back and it would soon be unable to hold on any longer.

Chapter 36 – Repelling The Enemy

What is this magic? Could this be the Dark Elves’ distinctive skill? From the Elder’s surprised expressions, I could tell that they’ve never seen this spell before. It was more or less the same as the magic used by that Bamboo Pole I met from the demon race. Yet it seemed quite different. I don’t know how.

The Third Elder murmured, “This isn’t the power of a Dark Elf. Where did this evil power come from?”

Right at this moment, the Nature Elves’ King was no longer able to endure and fell, having succumbed to the power of the formidable evil devourer. The four Nature Elves’ Elders used their power of nature to catch their king.
The dark power still relentlessly pursued him. It’s time for me to lend a hand. “Oh Great Light elements, I request of you to allow me to borrow your formidable strength. Let the infinite light of the earth shine, Brilliant Empire!” This is a spell I am quite familiar with, I slowly floated from the floor and met the evil power head on. My whole body emitting blinding white light, I raised my head. A third of my magic power came out of the gold dan within my upper dantian and covered my body. I gathered together the energy of the light elements into a pillar of light approximately two meters wide and sent it straight forward.

My pillar of light and his Endless Devourer collided into each other. The mist of black ash let out a mournful blood-curdling screech. Perhaps because of the great amount of energy it had just used, it dispersed upon clashing with my Brilliant Empire. The Dark Elf King immediately brandished his longsword to resist the remaining energy of my Brilliant Empire.

“Who are you to dare interfere in a matter between us elves?”

I faintly smiled, “Hello Dark Elf King. Your question is quite foolish. I am obviously a human. As to why I interfered, it is only natural I have a reason. In such a large elven forest, why can’t everyone get along? Killing each other only causes more hurt feelings.”

The Dark Elf King body let out an evil, icy air and sinisterly said, “What do you understand? This subspecies of elves also deserve to live in this forest? Only we Dark Elves are the elves’ genuine rightful rulers. Tactfully depart at once or else you shall meet a tragic end.”

Why do the elves care this much about their racial origins? Is there difference between this and the struggle between commoners and nobles? I shook my head and sighed, saying, “You are truly obsessed and do not understand. You believe that
by using power that is not your own, you can take over the elven forest?”

The dark elf king said with great alarm, “How do you know that I use power that isn’t mine?” Haha, I guessed correctly. I calmly replied to him, “Dark elves should be using dark magic. But that magic you just used was not dark magic. I will give you an opportunity to quickly leave or else you will suffer the inescapable fate of clan extermination.”

After I said what I felt, the Dark Elf King felt my words were timid. I covered my body in light elements and chanted, “Oh Great Light Elements, my friends, bestow me your pure strength, expel all resentment, let the spring winds warm and illuminate the Earth, World Illumination.” This was the most powerful spell I could currently use, a rank eight support spell. Not only that, but the highest ranked support spell can expel all anomalies from a large area in addition to having a devastating firepower against dark magic.

Following my chat, I slowly floated off the floor. My body emitted a pure and holy white radiance. With the continuous magic power flowing out of my body, the white brilliance gradually became a dazzling golden light. While the gold light quickly saturated the white light, it burst forth  vertically towards the sky. A golden ray of light of about a diameter of a meter rushed toward the direction of the sun.

The Dark Elf King was starting to become scared, but when saw that he had not suffered an attack. He said with disdain, “Was that just to scare? All Dark Elf Soldiers, prepare to attack!” All of the dark elves unfolded a pair of black wings and raised their black longswords. It was during this bloody prelude that something unexpected had happened.

The sky suddenly changed color. It was no longer blue, but
golden. Golden rays of light illuminated the Earth, giving people a feeling of warmth. All of the Nature Elves, even the Nature Elf King, all felt the beauty of the light. The wounded soldiers gradually recovered their strength and the light dispelled their corruption.

But it had an opposite effect for the Dark Elves. Under the illumination of the light, their bodies experienced extreme pain. Even those stronger were unable to bear it. Those weaker had already begun to drop to the floor. The Dark Elf King cried out in alarm, “What did you do? What did you do to my clansmen?” Brandishing his longsword, he threw himself towards me.

I lifted my hand and sent out a ray of light, forcing him back. I gently said, “This is light magic, specialized to expel evil. Stop, Dark Elf King. Could it be that you don’t care and wish to see your clansmen suffer in such a way? Could it be you want the Dark Elves to now be exterminated?”

Although the Dark Elf King’s power was profound, he still felt unwell. He couldn’t even produce a half of his might. He hesitated and knew that today, he would not be able to annex the Nature Elves. He hatefully said, “Fine. Withdraw  your magic. We will leave.”

I faintly smiled and withdrew my magic power. I secretly let out a sigh of relief. Actually, the current burden was far too great. In supporting such a large area advanced spell I had quickly reached my limit. Having them quickly retreat was certainly good.

The Dark Elf King gazed at me with great enmity and said, “I will remember this day well. I surely won’t let you get away with this. Withdraw!”

The energy I used to support the spell scattered and floated down to the ground. The Nature Elves let out an earthshaking cheer. The Third Elder came over and gripped my hand and said, “We are truly grateful to you. Were if not for your assistance, we may have not survived this crisis.”

My body instantly swayed and Dong Ri immediately  came over to supported me. I bitterly smiled and said, “Had they not retreated, I’m afraid we would have had to stake it all. I am nearly exhausted from supporting such a large spell. Lucky, so lucky.”

The Nature Elves crowded around us six and returned to the village. The Third Elder started to frown and worry again. I asked him, “What’s wrong? The Dark Elf King retreated. Why are you still so worried?”

The Third Elder said, “Although they retreated, a  moment ago, our king received a grave injury while fighting. None of our medical treatments have any effect. How could I not worry?”

I looked at the magic power within me. I should still have enough to use Spiritual Restoration without problem. A good person is almost dead. “Let’s go, I’ll go with you to take a look.”

Chapter 37 – Spirit Of Hospitality

The Third Elder and I went to the Nature Elf King’s bedroom. Not in the mood for admiring the room’s splendor, I tensely walked forward to his bed. All I saw was the pained expression of the Nature Elf King as he constantly moaned and groaned. A faint black gas was leaking out of his face. It seems that his pure nature power and the evil power were currently struggling against each other. I’ll help him out then.

“Oh Great Light Elements, as your friend, I request you to dispel this evil using your endless strength and save the person before you.” This is the strengthened version of my Spiritual Restoration. Not only was it very effective at recovery, it was also very effective for removing abnormal states. A pure white light was emitted from my hands, covering the whole body of the Nature Elf King. In the wake of the white light, the black gas gradually faded causing him to become more and more peaceful.

After letting out a breath of relief, I faced the Third Elder and
said, “I’m finished. There shouldn’t be any more problems now. It’s just that that His Majesty the Nature Elf King has exhausted his mental strength while I have basically completely healed his body. He only needs to rest now, so we should all leave now.”

Emotionally, the Third Elder grabbed my hands but I stopped speaking and instead dragged him out of the room.

“I truly can’t express how grateful I am. I don’t know how to repay you for this favor you have done for us Nature Elves.”

“It’s fine. Just quickly give us some delicious foods and drinks then arrange a place for us afterwards and you can consider the favor repaid. I’m about to die from exhaustion, so stop holding onto me like an old woman. Let’s go.” Saying so, I dragged him
back to everyone.

After the Nature Elves found out I cured their king, they all began to cheer happily. I couldn’t bother with this so I found a comfortable chair, closed my eyes and began resting. Naturally I told Dong Ri that he definitely has to tell me when it’s time to eat.

So fragrant, very fragrant. What is that smell? My nose had awakened my eyes. Hazily, I saw a big table filled with food. I shook my dazed head a few times and began moving my aching muscles and bones.

“What delicious foods are these, that smell is so savory? You guys truly aren’t acting as brothers! You didn’t even tell me!”

In response, Zhan Hu burst into laughter and said, “Look. It happened just like I said! As long as there are delicious foods, Zhang Gong doesn’t even need to be told. Ah, his nose isn’t any worse than his magic.” Zhan Hu’s words caused the whole room to roar in laughter.

Embarrassed, I arrived at the seat left for me at the table. It seems that the Nature Elves really are courteous. Without any formalities, I simply sat down and said, “So what if my nose is good? It’s only good for finding delicious food. Ah. All of the Elders are here. No need to be formal. Go ahead and eat everybody; no need to wait for me.” I grabbed an unfamiliar violet fruit and at it. Ah, it’s so sweet! It’s fragrant and sweet juices immediately permeated throughout my body. Simply too splendid.
Sitting beside, Dong Ri nudged me. He was indicating that I should act a bit more elegant. I’ll just ignore him. My stomach is already hungry, so how could I still bother with something like that? It’s not like this is a marriage interview.

The Great Elder began speaking, “Everybody, hurry up and eat. No need for formalities.” It was only after his words that everybody finally began moving.

The elven banquet had a focus on fruit. The fragrant aroma was actually the various fruits they brewed and fermented, making drinks that were simply too tasty. Mellow and rich fragrant wines were mixed together with all kinds of balmy fruits. After it entered my stomach, a warm current would spread throughout my body from the wine. It was exceptionally comfortable and was very effective at relaxing  my  fatigued body. Big Brother Zhan Hu simply loved the wine so much that he couldn’t part with it. Each drink he took caused the elders to feel a pain in their hearts. I heard from the elders that this fruit wine was very hard to make and they only took it out for the
most respected of guests. The wine had some effect of maintaining one’s youthful appearance. When the wine first entered the mouth, there wasn’t much of an impact, but after a bit, there would be a powerful impact. The elders all continuously urged us to drink a bit less. They really are stingy. Apart from Dong Ri, we were all becoming drunkards. We were still polite though. I originally wanted to inquire about the Holy Sword, but after a while I couldn’t manage to do it. Forget about it. I’ll ask about it tomorrow. Right now I should just replenish my strength. Haha!

While stroking my round stomach filled with food, an elf lead me to my room. To speak the truth, I was very tired.  My spiritual strength has already been exhausted.  After  laying down on the bed, there I began feeling dizzy. It seems that the fruit wine really does have a powerful aftereffect! I examined the state of my magic power and discovered that it’s actually quite good. I still have about 30% of it left. With this I’ll be able to recover back to 80% tomorrow. While in a daze, I entered the land of dreams.
Dawn. I was extremely excited because Xiao Jin had finally awakened from the deep sleep he has been in since the incident at the tournament. Through our spirit connection, I knew that his magic consumption was very great last time so he had to lay dormant for a while to recover. Now he was basically fully recovered. Xiao Jin is my most powerful assistant but in a certain sense, Xiao Jin could still be considered very weak. If he didn’t have the support of my magic power, he would only be able to endure 3-5 minutes of attacks. It really is too short. If we encountered a powerful opponent he wouldn’t have much of an effect. I didn’t have a good way to increase his strength either. Forget about it. For the time being I won’t bother with that. Now that I am a magister I generally didn’t need his help. My own magic power was also about the same; it had recovered to about 80%.

I let a royal guard elf bring me to find the Third Elder. We’ll have to depart after asking him about the location of the Holy Sword.
The royal guard returned and told me, “The elder invites you and your friends to go discuss your matter in the reception hall. I’ll lead the way.” Following the royal guard, we arrived at a very large building.

The Third Elder welcomed me outside saying, “Zhan Gong, you’ve arrived. I’ve already told the royal guard to go get your friends so they should be arriving soon.”

I politely replied, “Hello elder. Thank you for yesterday’s hospitality. How is His Majesty the Nature Elf King?”+

“Luckily you were there to treat him. Right now His Majesty has already recovered greatly. He’s waiting for you inside the building.”

“Then we should quickly enter.” Following the Third Elder, I entered the room. This room is so gorgeous! The floor was made of an unfamiliar stone with 12 pillars surrounding the center. On the roof there was an engraving and in the middle of the room was an extremely large oval table. Arranged around the table were roughly 30 to 40 chairs. On top of the table there were many different fruits displayed. It seems like they had already prepared for this. The Nature Elf King was seated at the head seat.

After seeing me, the Nature Elf King immediately stood up and said, “Magister Wei, you’ve arrived. Please take a seat.” The strength I had revealed yesterday could be seen by anyone with eyes so I didn’t find it strange at all that they knew I was a magister. However, this was the first time anyone  had addressed me like this. I wasn’t used to it at all. He had me sit to the seat right beside him on his left.
“It’s fine if you just call me Zhang Gong Your Majesty.”

The Nature Elf King didn’t take a sit down with me, rather he deeply bowed to me. “I must first thank  this  powerful Magister’s kindness for the aid you have given to my people as well as for saving my life.” As he walked towards me, I sprang up straight just before I sat down and said, “By all means, you don’t have to mention it. Aiding you all is what we ought to have done. We also need some aid from you all so it’s just everyone mutually benefitting. That’s all. No need to thank me. Besides, I’m a person who likes peace. So I’m very happy with being able to repel the Dark Elves assault without causing any deaths.”

Chapter 38 – Guidance To The Next Path

“No matter how you say it, without your assistance, we would have suffered a genocide. We still have to thank you.” I thought to myself, “This Elf King is far too polite; this is truly enough to tire me.”

Suddenly, I thought of a bright idea. I whispered in voice only he could hear into his ear, “If you truly want to thank me, then when I leave, you can send me off with all kinds of fruit wines. That will be enough.” Hearing my words, the Nature Elf King’s complexion changed, and whispered to me equally as quiet, “Magister Wei, yesterday your group drank half a year’s worth of wine. I can only give you little more.”

“If it is difficult, then forget about it.”
The Elf King smiled bitterly and said, “Do you know  how much money we could make if we sell our elven made wines to human nations? A small bottle can be sold for 10,000 diamond coins or higher. When you leave, I will give you a few bottles. Be sure to tell those countless elves wanting to be your friends that I have already gifted you, otherwise they’ll all want me to…”

I sent an understanding glance toward him and smiled.

“What made you two so happy?” Zhan Hu and everyone walked in a line and sat one by one to the right of me.

I guiltily said, “Big Brother, you all came. Just now, I was telling his Majesty a joke.”

The Elf King said, “Third Elder, since everyone is present, tell them all we know about the Holy Sword.”

The Third Elder agreed and said, “First, I, on behalf of the entire Nature Elven race, express sincere respect toward all of you. Thank you for assistance in allowing my race to survive through this crisis.”

Zhan Hu laughed with a smile and said, “Please don’t thank us. If such a time ever comes again, all you would need is to give us a few more bottles of your hundred fruit wines.” Others one by one expressed their agreement. Even Dong Ri, who did not particularly like drinking, nodded. Sure enough, I gave the Elf King the correct answer.

I had to cheat everyone this time for my delicious fruit wine. “Let it go. Big Brother, yesterday we drank a whole year produced of wine. They don’t have any more in stock.” The Elf King and I looked at each other with a mutual understanding.

Zhan Hu disappointedly licked his lips and continued, “Had I known yesterday, I would have drank a bit less.”

I signaled Third Elder to continue. He continued, “The Holy Sword, it is said to be the remaining weapon of the king of all gods long ago. It has the might to destroy the heavens and exterminate the earth. According to the ancient legends of my race, it should be within the Forest of Gods.”
“The Forest of Gods? I’ve never heard of it before.” I asked in doubt.

“Right. That is how it should be. Since ancient times, Us Nature Elves have been named Emissaries of the Gods. That is why only we know of this secret. Actually, we’ve seen many treasure hunters like yours. However, those who searched in the Forest of Gods are few. Even if you find the Forest of Gods, you would not be able to pass the boundary created by the gods. In all this time, not one had found the Holy Sword. You are the first group in three hundred years to hunt treasure here.”

“Boundary? We can’t enter, even with  our  power?”  The power of us six is enough to handle a small army.
“Your group’s power is truly strong. When I  was  young,  I have seen power not inferior to that of your group of humans, but they were not able to enter. It is said that to pass through this boundary, not only do you need strength, but you also need to receive the acknowledgement of the gods. This is  all  we know. As to how to enter the Forest of Gods, even we do not know this. However, it should not be too dangerous. You’ll be able to drive away what comes.

I originally believed that because of our strength that completing this mission shouldn’t be hard, but I hadn’t expect this to be so complicated. I bitterly smiled and said, “Thank you for telling us this. So where is this Forest of Gods? We will go and try our luck.”

The Third Elder smiled and said, “Zhang Gong, don’t worry. I feel that you are the kind of person that gives others an unusual feeling of intimacy. Although the time we’ve known each other was not long, I am unable to not see you as a friend. The Gods should be fond of kindhearted people. In addition, you can also
use light magic. Therefore the chances of the gods accepting you are quite high.”

Hearing the Third Elder’s Words, Xiu Si continued, saying, “That’s right. Xing Ao, Gao De and I all feel this way. At the start, we were not particularly convinced of him. However, the longer we were together, the more reliable he became. Unconsciously, he already became our friend.”

I looked at everyone. It really seems to be this way. I have no absolute enemies and people I spend little time with have exceptional confidence in me. Originally, I had believed this was because I was really handsome. But it turns out it was only because of my affinity with others. I was truly disappointed.
“That’s enough. Everyone stop praising me. Third  Elder please talk about the location of Forest of Gods.”

The Third Elder chuckled, “Actually, you are already in the Forest of Gods.”

His words rendered us speechless. He continued on, “We’re only at its exterior. Where we are in the Elves’ Forest is the Forest of the Gods exterior. Head deeper in and it will be the Forest of Gods.”

Zhan Hu smiled and said, “Zhang Gong, our luck is so great. After a small detour, we’ll have to travel no further. Elder, we’ll have to inconvenience you to bring us there.”

Third Elder pondered, then said, “A rule of our elven ancestors is troublingly to never approach a hundred kilometers of the Forest of Gods. I can only tell you it’s approximate location. If you walk in the direction I told you, you should be able to find it.”

“That is also fine. Then we will now set off.”

Just as I stood up to leave, I saw the Elf King wear a troubling expression. It seemed he wanted to say something. “Your Majesty, do you want to say something else?”
The Elf King gave an embarrassed smile and said, “That’s right. Although this time the Dark Elves retreated, I still fear…”

I suddenly realized they still feared another attack. This was a true problem. I scratched my head. Ah that’s right, it was like that. I took a book out of my dimensional pocket and handed it over to the Elf King and said, “This is a book of light elementary and intermediate spells I wrote myself. There are many small spells I created inside. Have your elven soldiers learn them well. With their elven innate magic, they should be able to grasp it quickly. This way you do not have to fear them.”

The Elf King took the book and looked through it, saying, “This doesn’t seem right. These are magic illustrations.”
“Ah! I’m sorry, I gave the wrong one.” I immediately switched books. Oh that’s right, I still hadn’t studied this book’s magic. I should look at it when I have the time. (Actually, the magic within is a subject of extraordinarily profound  knowledge. When the Child of Light comes across his greatest difficulty, he discovered what a mistake it was to not learn that  magic earlier.)

Chapter 39 – The Forest Of Gods

Dusk, outside of the Forest of Gods.

“Peng!” With that sound, a halo of light burst forth and filled the sky.

Seven days ago, the Third Elder smoothly guided us to God’s Barrier. During this week, we lost count of the many methods we had used to attempt to break through this barrier. We used magical attacks, battle spirit attacks, combined attacks and penetrating attacks (all on the same place) and still we failed.

“I don’t have any more strength. It seems like we don’t have any hopes of doing it today either.” After firing off two rank 8
spells, I sat down beside Zhan Hu in exhaustion.

Xiu Si wrinkled his eyebrows and said, “Could it be that this is truly a barrier created by the Gods? Even with all of our attacks, we were unable to harm it in the slightest. It truly is too frightening.”

Xing Ao furiously replied, “I refuse to believe that! I’ll go try again.” As he said this, he concentrated his battle spirit into his knight’s sword and released a powerful slash. “Peng!” Needless to say, the barrier rebounded again.

This barrier was transparent and whenever it faced an attack, it would release seven brilliant colors of light. We didn’t know how much strength it had. I estimated that a forbidden spell
wouldn’t be able to penetrate it.

I muttered, “Don’t tell me we truly have to give up? What face would I have left if I have to tell Teacher Di that I left this mountain of treasure empty handed?”

Dong Ri walked to my side and consoled me, “Don’t think too hard about it. A sincere heart is most effective. Let’s just rest for today and continue tomorrow.”

Dong Ri’s words moved me and I eagerly asked him, “What did you just say?”

Dong Ri stared at me blankly and said, “I said that we should rest first and continue tomorrow! What’s the matter?”

“That’s not it. The part before it.”

“Before that I told you not to think about it too hard. A sincere heart is most effective.”

“Yes, yes ,yes! That’s the part. A sincere heart is  most effective. A sincere heart is most effective… Could it be that the method we are using is wrong?”

After hearing my words, Xiu Si’s eyes also began to shine. “That’s right! Could it be that we aren’t supposed to attack it but rather appease it?

I thought about it and said, “Forget about it. We’ll just leave it be for today. Everyone’s already exhausted so we’ll have a good rest first, and then we’ll carefully study it tomorrow.”

We laid down on a bed of spread tree leaves and looked at the sky’s stars. How do we break through this  indestructible barrier? Strength won’t work. Softness of a sincere heart, what method of sincerity would work? These thoughts continued to flash through my mind, causing me to toss in bed, unable to sleep. Forget about it. I couldn’t sleep anyway, so I’ll meditate. I’ll replenish my magic power as soon as possible and think about it tomorrow.

I gradually concentrated my mind on my Gold Dan. I felt fully relaxed and sensed the surrounding light elements. Much of the bright full moon’s light gathered towards me. I thought to myself, ‘Beloved friends, come. I need you.’

Following the arrival of the light elements, the Gold Dan gradually enriched itself. An unknown amount of time had passed and my Gold Dan had already replenished its energy. This feeling of fullness is truly comfortable. I opened my eyes. The day had just dawned. Everyone was still dreaming. I walked by myself to the edge of the barrier and lightly stroked the indestructible barrier with my hand. I sighed to myself ten million times. After a year of effort, we finally reached here but to stop now was unbearable.

As I watched the lush forest on the other side of the barrier,
my mind gradually became more and more tranquil. Ah, what a beautiful scene. At that moment, the barrier’s energies suddenly fluctuated where I placed my hand. Could it be that….?

I probed the barrier while thinking of beauty and peace. Prudently, I began inserting some of my spiritual power. In response to my spiritual power, the barrier’s energy began trembling again before it unexpectedly began to  gradually accept my spiritual power.

A warm benevolent voice resounded from the bottom of my heart, giving me a fright. “Who dares to disturb my  eternal rest?” Could it be that that barrier is actually alive? I telepathically replied to the barrier, “Hello, I accidently disturbed your peace. I came here in search of the Holy Sword.”
“Holy Sword? Child, it has been a long time since anyone has come here. I advise you to stop your search for it here.”

“Why?”

“Because I have sensed the goodness in your heart. I don’t want to see you throw your life away.”

“This is the mission that my teacher has entrusted to me. Regardless of how difficult it is, I must go complete it. I beseech of you, please allow me to enter.”
It took half a day for him to give me a reply. “Grandpa Barrier, is it alright?”

“Fine then. It’s very dangerous inside. There are three difficulties that you must pass. Each one is harder than the one before, so you must be careful. You and your friends can enter then. All of you must look after each other and in the case that you are unable to pass the ordeal, you must by all means not stay any longer and withdraw quickly. Don’t sacrifice your own life in vain.”

“Alright. Thank you Grandpa Barrier.” It seems that addressing him this way made him really happy.

I didn’t  know  how  lucky  I  actually  was.  First  of  all,  this
barrier was setup by the God of Creation and unknown number of years ago. Any evil or violent powers were all stopped by it. After I my accidental display of benevolence, I had unexpectedly awoken this un-named “Grandpa Barrier”. Secondly, in my discussion with Grandpa Barrier, my resolute  conviction allowed me to obtain his admiration. This was crucial to me winning over Grandpa Barrier. If I hadn’t been able to obtain his permission, it would have been impossible for me to enter this barrier.

I returned to everyone’s side and shouted, “Get up everybody!
Quickly get up everybody!”

Pushing this and shaking that, everybody finally wobbled awake.
Xing Ao said with sleepy eyes, “What is it Zhang Gong? Let me sleep some more. It isn’t even bright out yet.”

“That’s right. What are doing so early?”

Discontent voices resounded throughout the camp.

I smiled and suddenly said with a loud voice, “I found a way to enter the barrier.”
Xiu Si was the first to recover after I startled everybody. “Really? We can really enter the barrier?”

“Yes. We’re able to enter the barrier. Now hurry up and get up you lazy slobs. We’re going now.”

Dong Ri let out a happy squeal and leaped up. “Zhang Gong, how did you do it?”

I explained how I connected with the barrier and the events following that.
“Zhang Gong, we don’t know how long this barrier has been here. I suppose that it was created by the gods. It seems that your luck is outrageously good. Let’s go. Otherwise that elder will change his mind.”

“Hehe. No need to pull. Let’s go.”

Everyone once again arrived in front of the barrier. After placing their hands on it, everyone began transmitting respectful, peaceful and warm feelings. Suddenly, the barrier began disappearing from where their hands where.

We all looked at each other in dismay while simultaneously cheering. We all deeply bowed towards the place where the barrier was before, then afterwards we headed inwards with
lightning speed.

Chapter 40 – Forest Giants

Finally we entered. Everyone had a feeling of clarity.

By dawn, we had already ventured about 3 to 4 kilometers into the Forest of Gods. “Everyone slow down. Grandpa Barrier said there were dangers here.” I urged everyone to be careful.

We were surrounded by trees that reached the sky. Was the holy sword really here?

“Everyone wait a moment. It seems there is danger.” I suddenly felt an air of danger. No, it should be said that Xiao Jin felt danger and then told me. Do we dare approach something that could even frighten Xiao Jin?

We unanimously agreed to look around but we didn’t find anything. However, the feeling of danger Xiao Jin passed on to me grew more intense.

Zhan Hu pointed at a meadow and suddenly said, “That’s abnormal. Take a careful look at the ground.”

Looking at where his finger pointed, the ground was covered in grass and there was nothing abnormal about it. However, observing it carefully, it almost seemed the short grass was slightly trembling. No, it really was slightly trembling!
The experienced Xiu Si lay flat on his stomach with his ear pressed against the ground.

I hastily asked, “How is it?”

Xiu Si waved his hand in the air wanting me to stop bothering him.

After a short moment, Xiu Si jumped up from the ground, and with a pale face said, “Not good, it seems there are unknown creatures approaching us from all directions. From the sounds, I can roughly determine there is still a distance of two kilometers between us. I fear their size is not small as their footsteps are quite heavy.”

Dong Ri frightfully said, “What are we going to do?”

Everyone was lost in thought.

Big Brother Zhan Hu resolutely said, “Let’s find an area relatively crowded with trees. We can’t let them attack us from all directions. It seems they’ve already surrounded us so all we can do now is hope for them to be weak.”

Zhan Hu’s proposal obtained everyone’s unanimous approval.
We quickly found a small area tightly surrounded by trees.

Xiu Si suggested, “When they come, everyone should form a small circle and individually block the gaps. Zhang Gong, you should fire magic from the center.”

“Alright, Dong Ri’s skill is also different and will be in the center. Xing Ao and Xiu Si should form a group with Big Brother and Gao De in another. Everyone supports each other.”

As we finished planning, we could already hear the sound of those distinct footsteps. Our hearts were pounding. What were they?
Eventually we saw them. Everyone could not help but look at each other in dismay and swallow a breath of cold air.

Rows of closely packed giants walked toward us. They were not small in number. They looked as if they were carved out of a mold. They had a height of about two and half meters. Their whole bodies were made of stone. From the gap in the trees, they steadily approached us step by step. As they drew near we could hear them repeat, “Eliminate the intruders. Eliminate the intruders.”

No way! This is too frightening. What are those things? Stone Giants?

As they approached us, Zhan Hu let out a long whistle and we
prepared to attack.

During this desperate moment, my mind was extraordinarily clear. “We cannot die like this, passively defending until the last man. We don’t know how many there are and there is no longer a path of retreat. We should rush towards the depths of the forest. Big Brother and Xiu Si should open up a path in front. Xing Ao and Gao De will guard our rear. Dong Ri and I will support from the middle.”

The stone giants were already in front of us. I shouted at once, “Everyone, charge!”

Big Brother Zhang Hu took the lead. With longsword in hand, he used battle spirit to send out a white ray of light toward the
giants in front. The giants lifted their arms in an attempt to resist his attack. Could they really block Big Brother, whose skill neared the level of a radiant knight? White light flashed. “Ka cha” the sound of snapping. The stone giants were split in two by Zhan Hu and fell to halves in concert.

Big Brother Zhan Hu’s bold and powerful strike greatly improved our morale. Xiu Si used a similar technique to break apart a giant.

“Light Elements, my friends, form a shield of light and resist the enemy’s invasion.” I immediately exert a shield of light for everyone and in passing I used light elements to send a blade of energy to dispose of a giant behind us.
Like that, we sank into a hard battle. I was the busiest. There were still quite a lot ahead of us. Big Brother and Xiu Si’s powerful battle spirit rapidly disposed of seven to eight of the stone giants. However, our rear and sides were much more dangerous. After all as Gao De and Xing Ao skills were a bit lacking, it was difficult to support the rear defense.

This won’t do. At this speed, it is simply impossible to rush through this army of giants.

I called out within my mind, “Xiao Jin, help.”

Without warning, Xiao Jin’s majestic figure appeared in front of everyone. His appearance immediately dwarfed the tall image of the giants.

Xiao Jin let out a sky shaking dragon’s roar and spout out white dragon’s breath from his large mouth. He immediately cleared a passage of about five meters wide.

I violently bellowed, “Xiao Jin opened up a path! Everyone break through their rear!”

Xiao Jin’s formidable physical attacks had great effect. With only the sweeps of his tail and swipes of his claws, the surrounding stone giants were completely overpowered. Naturally at the same time, I could feel Xiao Jin’s magic power quickly deplete. Everyone defended me at the center while following Xiao Jin’s lightning fast forward charge.  I continuously sent magic power through the connection between Xiao Jin and me.

Had Xiao Jin already completely matured, we would  have been able to mount his back and fly away. It was a pity that currently, he could only carry the weight of two people at most. Even if Xiu Si and Zhan Hu could persist by flying out, there would be two graves left behind. This was something that none of us could accept. Also, it wouldn’t necessarily succeed. Therefore, no one had bothered to suggest as such.

The seconds and minutes passed as one after another, Stone Giants were smashed by our formidable strength. Our deadly rush had already traveled at least a kilometer. However, the surrounding stone giants did not appear to have lessened one bit. Although the strength of my magic power had increased by a bit, the burden of Xiao Jin’s requirements over this  long length of time had gradually exhausted me. Xiao Jin was currently riddled with wounds. His movements were already no longer as vigorous and lively as the beginning. Panting roughly for air, he could only barely struggle to maintain the front line. The others were also in dire condition. Big Brother Zhan Hu’s sword had snapped and he was at present painfully supporting himself with a branch. Apart from me, everyone had all suffered
heavy wounds.

To continue in this fashion, would have everyone  leave  a grave behind.

“Dong Ri, Gao De, Xing Ao, all of you mount Xiao Jin, use your spirit to lighten your body. Big Brother and Xiu Si, fly up. I’ll endure for a time. All of you, quickly go!”

Zhan Hu used all of his might to chop down a stone giant and madly roared, “Out of the question! I  definitely cannot  leave you alone without a care.”

I furiously said, “Quickly, leave! Don’t tell me you want this place to be our grave?”

Chapter 41 – Fortunate Passage

I gathered what little magic power I had left and began to chant, “Oh Light Elements, my great friends, I request of you, use your power to become an endless radiance and transform into little stars, annihilate the enemies before you.” This was my strongest large scale attack spell, rank 8 light magic, Bright Stars’ Shine.

Although it was daytime, I could still see specks of white light gathering toward me. It surrounded my body, turning  into  a ball of golden light; I slowly floated from the ground. When I floated about five meters off the ground, the ball of light suddenly burst and released golden starlight amongst the wide expanse. The stone giants within a hundred meters were completely enveloped by the starlight. As it  passed  through their solid bodies, open cavities were left behind. The stone giants within 100 meters were completely annihilated. This had created a brief moment of safety.
While I was in the air, I spat out a mouthful of blood from my excessive use of magic power and dropped down. A golden light flashed and Xiao Jin caught me on his back.

A hundred meters away, I saw the stone giants slowly approaching. I shouted through clenched teeth, “Xiao Jin, use the last of your power and bring everyone away, quickly!”

Xiao Jin let out a sound of lament, clearly unwilling to leave me.

Everyone had already come over and crowded around.
Everyone was injured, we bitterly smiled at one another.

I urgently said, “Quickly leave! Otherwise it’ll be too late.”

Zhan Hu smiled, saying, “Foolish Little Brother, do you think we still have the strength to fly out? I’m afraid your magic beast is also unable to carry anyone. Look at his wing.”

Sure enough, Xiao Jin’s left wing had a large wound. It seems he could not fly.

Distressed, I said, “Don’t tell me everyone wants this place to be their grave? Blame me. Blame me for having you follow me.
Blame me for not listening to Grandpa Barrier’s words and having everyone be buried with me. I am unworthy of you. If I had you leave at the beginning perhaps you still would have been able to escape.” Remorseful tears flowed down my cheeks.

Xing Ao scolded, “Enough. Zhang Gong, we are all good brothers. Although we could live together, is dying together so bad? We’ll just organize another Brilliant Battle Squadron in the afterlife and sweep across the world of ghosts.” With this said, he tightly grasped my hand.

Xiu Si  said,  “Xing  Ao  is  correct.  We  are  forever  brothers.
Besides, you did nothing wrong.”

Xiao Jin lowered his body and licked me with his tongue.
Closing his eyes, he snuggled against me. It is clear that he wanted to die together with me.

Everyone joined hands together. A strong sense of companionship filled our hearts. We saw the stone giants have already reached 50 meters of us, all of them announcing the declaration of certain death. At this time, resistance was already meaningless. Nobody spoke a word more and waited together for death to arrive.

The giants gradually grew closer.

40 meters… 30 meters… 20 meters… 10 meters… 5 meters…

We glanced at each other, then we closed our eyes.

Not a minute had passed. Baffled, I thought, ‘How am I still not dead? I am not afraid of death. The others were trembling as they waited for death.’

Unable to bear the impatience, I opened my eyes. I was stunned by the scene before me.

It was the same as if we had just entered the Forest of Gods. How dense. How beautiful. The environment was filled with
ancient trees that reached the sky. However, the bloodthirsty giants disappeared without a sound. If everyone no longer had the same injuries as before, perhaps I could then reason I was no longer alive.

Similarly, they could no longer wait and one by one everyone opened their eyes. They were all stunned by the scene before them.

After quite a while, we finally reacted. We simultaneously roared from the joy of escaping mortal danger.

I loudly yelled, “We aren’t dead! We aren’t dead!”

Xiao Jin turned into a gold light and returned to my body.

“What is going on? How did those giants disappear?”

“Could it be their time ended?”

“Regardless, nobody died. It is as such.”
We all sat on the floor and leaned against the large trees. With my mind cleared, I said, “The most important thing right now is to immediately recover our strength.”

Xiu Si took out the rations and water while I took out some medical supplies from my dimensional pocket. Everyone bound their wounds, ate their respective rations and dizzily lied down. We were extremely tired.

Not knowing how long we slept, we all woke up. Everyone’s strength recovered a bit. I also felt much more comfortable.

It was already late. We had finished eating our rations and sat around the open fire.

I broke the silence first, “It would be better to not advance.
Let’s travel back.”

Zhan Hu said, “No way. We all traveled here with much difficulty. We absolutely cannot give up halfway.”

“However, I do not want anyone to continue accompanying me on my adventure. You should all go back. I’ll complete my mission by myself.”

Xiu Si angrily said, “Zhang Gong, who do you take us for? Are
we really so fearful of death? Is there anyone here who here wishes to leave?”

Xing Ao loudly said, “Xiu Si words are right. We aren’t shirking cowards.”

I looked to the left and then to the right. To my surprise, no one was willing to leave. I sighed and stood up. Then I deeply bowed towards everyone. “Thank you all. You are my greatest brothers.” Emotional tears flowed down.

Dong Ri also stood and embraced my shoulders, “Zhang Gong, what are you doing? We are all brothers. Besides, we too want to witness the holy sword.”

Zhan Hu broke the heavy mood and changed the subject, saying, “We should plan our next move.”

Xiu Si said, “I feel that everyone should first recover from their injuries and reach their peak condition. Then we will continue onward. This way, it will be a bit safer.”

I nodded, “Right. I think so too. We still don’t know what other dangers lie ahead.”

Zhan Hu said, “I also agree. We should cut down the
surrounding trees to make an encirclement. Then we’ll take turns keeping watch. Everyone else will go to sleep.”

After ten days of rest and organization, everyone had finally recovered to their peak condition. After my previous exertion, Xiao Jin seems to mature a bit. He could already absorb a bit of energy from the world. With this, he can accompany me in battles for a longer period of time. The gold sphere in my body felt more stable than before. It flashed a pure gold inside my body. My magic mimicry attacks (Spells in which I directly use magic power to transform it into my intended form without incantations are called magic mimicry attacks) were  much easier to use than before. It seems I have improved. Teacher Di was right, only with continuous temperament could I obtain even greater progress.

Chapter 42- Looking For The Holy Sword

Everyone changed to a different extent. Dong Ri’s progress was especially fast. Many had assumed that his strength was the weakest. Everyone could give him pointers. I felt that during the fight for life or death with the stone giants, Dong Ri fully realized what he was lacking. He humbly asked everyone for their guidance. After only ten days of tireless diligence, he had felt as if he had shed his mortal body and exchanged his bones. His strength had already caught up to Gao De and Xing Ao.

Everyone packed up to continue the treasure hunt.

After three days passed without an incident, the Forest  of Gods seemed to be endless.
I froze in my tracks as I felt a slight fluctuation in magic. “Everyone wait, there’s a magic fluctuation nearby.”

Taking out our weapons, I stood in the center with a  wry smile, “It won’t be the same as last time right?” Although everyone kept silent, I knew that fear still persisted  in  our hearts from the last encounter with the stone giants.

I didn’t get an answer. With my eyes closed, I focused my Gold Dan and used it to search for the source of the magic fluctuation.

Everyone kept a tight formation as they followed me northwest.

The closer we got, the greater the intensity of the magic. It somehow gave off a feeling of peacefulness.

Walking along, we encounter a tall mountain.

With confidence I said, “It’s definitely this mountain. Let’s take a look.”

Ancient trees towered around us. We cautiously approached the base of the mountain. Surprisingly, the base contained nothing but grass. Even the trees did not exist within 50 meters
of the mountain.

Looking at it, it was just a normal mountain. There wasn’t even a hermit’s cave in it, yet I still felt that the fluctuation of magic came from here.

I instructed everyone to encircle me as I sat down cross- legged. I focused my spirit, using it to seek out the source of the magical energy. It seems that the wave after wave of magical energy was being released from the heart of the mountain.

I stood up, with a frown I said, “The magical energy is definitely coming from the mountain, but there isn’t a single cave here.”

With a pat on my shoulder, Zhan Hu said “Let’s circle around the mountain, see if we find anything new.” Since no other options were available, I nodded.

We spent two days checking every possible area that might lead to an entrance, but we couldn’t even find a single crack.

In the end we arrived back to the meadows at the front of the mountain. Everyone’s spirits were worn out. I was anxious, but there didn’t seem to be a solution.
I paced back and forth on the grass. Suddenly I felt that the middle of the meadow was different from the edge. I briskly walked towards the edge of the meadow to confirm my gut feeling. The edge of the meadow was very soft, almost as if it was the same as the floor of a forest. However, the meadow had an area in the center about ten square meters that was very hard. Could it be…? I couldn’t help but feel a burst of enlightenment from within my heart.

“Everyone, I think I’ve found it.”

Hearing what I said, everyone rushed over. Xing Ao impatiently said, “What did you find Zhang Gong?”

“There’s nothing  at  first  glance,  but  this  area  is  especially
hard. Something is definitely underneath.”

Everyone exchanged glances at what I had said before they took out their weapons and began clearing the knee-deep grass.

Soon the grass within a 10 meter radius was cleared. A magic hexagram with strange patterns was now visible. It seems that the grass grew from the cracks of the patterns.

Since I was the only one who knew magic, everyone looked my way with expectant eyes. Smiling, I said, “If I’m not wrong, this is teleportation magic, but even I don’t know where it teleports to.”

Xiu Si said, “Then let’s give it a try, maybe it will warp us to the Holy Sword.”

With an awkward smile I said, “I don’t know how to use it. I learned light magic, but I haven’t really learned much teleportation magic.”

Gao De asked in shock, “Then what do want us to do? Are we supposed to leave this mountain of treasure empty handed?”

Smiling, I said, “Don’t worry, even though I never used it, I
still have a way of finding out how.” With this said, I took out the book Teacher Di gave me from my dimensional pocket.

“Don’t worry everyone. You should first take a rest. I’ll go investigate.”

Everyone looked at each other with a bitter smile. In a pessimistic tone, Big Brother Zhan Hu said, “It won’t be possible to learn it in such short moment.”

Scratching my head, I said, “There’s not much we can do, might as well try something. With brother’s creativeness, we will definitely succeed. Haha…”

Everybody went quiet. If it wasn’t for this sliver of hope, I was afraid a fight was going to break out. With a forced laugh I started to look for information regarding the magic hexagram using the book.

Although I said that we might as well try something, this was the first time I seriously tried using the book. Even though I was quite lazy as a child, I was still able to understand it.

At the start, my goal was to decipher the magic from the book, but as I kept reading, I wasn’t able to stop, it expanded my horizon of what I could do with magic. I was completely immersed in a sea of magic.
This book was densely packed with everything from the principles of magic spells to the applications in real combat. It was simply a priceless treasure. Not only was the language exceptionally concise, it had only needed a few sentences to introduce the principles of magic. All of the book was written in this way. Magic arrays, as the name implies, uses the battle arrays to set up various kinds of elements as its base. With a complex magic array, it was possible to have the elements resonate with nature and cast spells that were impossible to cast without them. Magic arrays normally include: barrier, teleportation, amplification, support, and unique magic. The higher the rank was of a magic array, the more that was demanded of the user as well as the complexity of the magic array.

Chapter 43 – The Secret Cave Adventure

No one disturbed me, while I had been exceptionally focused on my studies. Aside from eating and sleeping, I spent nearly ten hours every day studying.

At last, after three days of arduous struggling, I had a basic understanding of the contents of the book. In other words, I had grasped the basics of magic arrays.

I comfortably stretched my body and said, “I’m finally finished. I’m so tired.” I stood up and began moving my body, after all, it had been three days since I had last exercised my body.
Everyone came over and crowded around. Zhan Hu asked, “How about it? Have you found a way through?”

“The book didn’t have any information about this specific magic array.” I said, embarrassed.

Everyone looked at each other in dismay. Xing Ao said, “Impossible. Then we really have stop here.”

“Don’t worry everyone. Although I can’t tell you the specifics of this magic array, I reckon the use of this magic array should be similar enough. Let’s test it out.”

I made everyone disperse first before walking into the center of the magic array’s hexagram. After reading the book, I knew that a magic array requires a large amount of magic power from a magic source to activate. The most crucial point is that the mage must have enough mana to completely satisfy the needs of the magic array, otherwise the magic array won’t activate and would even bring harm to the mage. Fortunately, my magic as a magister should be sufficient.

“This magic array has long existed since ancient times. By using my magic as a medium, I’ll be able to open it.” The book had said that a magic array’s core was at its center. I collected light elements into my right hand and, with an incantation, poured them into the core of the array. The array’s core was like a bottomless pit, quickly swallowing my magic power. Dim golden rays of light rose from the huge magic array. I did my utmost to hasten the condensation of the surrounding light elements into my golden sphere, and unceasingly inserted  it into the core. However, my magic power continued to weaken with the intensity of the insertion. The magic array’s golden shape grew increasingly brilliant.

Right as the oil, which was fueling my lamp, was about to dry up, the magic array ceased absorbing my magic power. The moment I released a giant sigh of relief, an unprecedentedly dazzling radiance burst forth from the array. Seeing this, I knew that the magic array was about to activate so I shouted to the others, “Quickly! Everyone quickly enter the hexagram! The array is about to activate.” I immediately began  running towards one of the corners of the hexagram because I knew that only the six corners of the hexagram provided the greatest amount of protection against the magical array.

The group’s shadows parted, flashing to the other five corners of the hexagram. Just as we stepped on, we felt the sky spin. The magic array’s golden rays of light faded away with us into the air.
Whoosh. We all fell onto the floor at the same time. Thanks to the gold light we could see a bit of our surroundings in the pitch black darkness. ‘We should be in the belly of the mountain.’ The gold light in the center began to grow dimmer and dimmer before we were suddenly enveloped within complete darkness.

“Everyone don’t move yet. Stay on guard while I recover my magic power for a bit. Then we’ll continue forward.”

“Light elements, my friends, I beseech of you to illuminate the earth.” This was the first spell I had ever learned, illumination.

A light sparked from my hand and the environment shone as if it were day. I first saw everyone sitting in a single  circle around me. Nobody had completely adapted to the dazzling
light yet. The cave was as tall as two people and about five meters wide. The area ahead was so dark, we could not tell how deep it reached. The entire cave’s walls and floors were abnormally smooth. It was obviously polished.

Everyone began cautiously surveying the surroundings. Xiu Si said, “It seems that we’re in the belly of the mountain. The Holy Sword should be in here.”

Big Brother Zhan Hu said, “Everyone be cautious. Xiu Si and I will lead the way. Zhang Gong will be at the center. Gao De, Xing Ao and Dong Ri will be in the back. Let’s go.”

We kept formation as we walked onward. The illumination was only able to light up 10 meters ahead, so we treaded
carefully forward. However, there seemed to be no end. We had already walked for an unknown amount of time and the circumstances had not changed one bit.

“Wait a moment everyone.” I felt that there was something wrong with the situation so I had everyone halt. I  took  my magic staff out of my dimensional bag and continued, “I don’t know if my feeling is right, but I think we’re going in circles. I’ll leave behind this seal and we’ll see if we come across it again later.”

Xiu Si said, “I feel the same. Let’s hasten our pace.”

We sped forward. Sure enough, in approximately half  the time, we returned to where I had placed my magic staff. I picked
up my staff from the ground and scowled.”

Dong Ri said, “What are we going to do? Could it be that this is a labyrinth?

I said, “No, this shouldn’t be a labyrinth. It seems we still haven’t found the crucial location. There should be some kind of mechanism.” With this said, I sat cross legged on the ground and released my spiritual energy to look for a way out. I felt my surroundings were made up of entirely impermeable mountain rock. Only the ground seemed to be hollow.

I stood up and had everyone stand apart. I pointed to the ground and said, “The ground is contrastingly empty. Let’s try and see if we can break a hole through.”

Big Brother Zhan Hu said, “I will.” He waved his  knights sword and slashed with white battle spirit toward the ground. Bang. Dust filled the air.

Before the dust had even settled, the entire cave began shaking. I shouted, “This isn’t good! Everyone gather here quickly and concentrate your powers.” After everyone gathered around me, I cast a protective cover on all of us. In return, they all used their battle spirits to form a formidable energy cover. Right as they finished forming their energy covers, the floor beneath our feet crumbled away. We all fell into the bottomless abyss together.

Not knowing how far we dropped, the energy cover eventually hit the ground. Hong. The energy cover holding the six of us shattered and everyone scattered. The formidable impact made
us all receive varying concussions, knocking us all out

I felt myself completely sink into a dark vortex. My surroundings had many vague things revolving around me. The feeling of dizziness circled around me.

Suddenly a warm voice called out to me, “Child. Come back.
Don’t give up. Come back!”

A warm power surrounded me and the spinning surroundings gradually slowed down. Soon after, everything faded away and once again, I sunk into the darkness. Yet, my mind  was gradually recovering.

Chapter 44 – Tale Of The Gods

It hurt so much. It felt like my entire body was crushed. Although my body was feeling great pain, the warmth was very comfortable. A wave of warm energy comforted  me  and restored my damaged body. What was this?

I slowly opened my eyes and was stunned by the sight before me. I was inside an extraordinarily large shrine with many statues of gods. The floor spanned at least 10,000 square meters and the roof was over a hundred meters tall. Many large precious stones were embedded in the ceiling and walls. The main hall shone as if it were daytime. What a grand building!

We were all completely covered in light. It seems that they still hadn’t woken up and that the warm energy came from the covering of light.

I tried to move, but was met with an unbearable pain. My body spasmed with pain. I tried to scream out in pain, but my voice just did not come out. When I panicked, I fainted again.

I don’t know how much time passed before I woke up. Dong Ri’s voice sounded in my ear. “Zhang Gong has awakened!”

I opened my eyes and realized that everyone was surrounding me. I moved my body, which already did not hurt anymore. It looks like that light had treated my wound.
“How is everyone?” I weakly asked.

“No problem, everyone is fine.” Dong Ri answered.

I smiled and said, “That’s great! It seems like we are in a God’s shrine. This should be our destination. Have you found the Holy Sword?”

Xing Ao said, “We just woke up not long ago and roughly surveyed the area, but we have not found it.
Dong Ri helped me up. I inhaled deeply before checking my body’s condition. My magic power had fully recovered. How did that happen? Did that light change my body?

I hurriedly asked the team, “Do you feel like something is different?”

Gao De said, “Yes, really different. It looks like my body has changed a lot. My six senses have increased greatly. However, my skills are still the same as before, but I feel that if I continue to train, my speed of improvement will increase greatly.”

Zhang Hu nodded his head and said, “That’s right! I feel the same. It is as though I have shed my mortal body and exchanged my bones.”

Just as I was about to say something, a benevolent voice suddenly resounded throughout the whole shrine. “I welcome you all, kind children.” It was a familiar voice.

We looked around at our surroundings, but we still could not figure out where the voice was coming from. The voice seemed to be coming from all directions at the same time.

The benevolent voice echoed again, “Stop searching. You will never find me. Otherwise, did you forgot who let you all in?”
Ah~ I remembered. I softly said, “Are you the grandpa barrier?”

“Haha, you remembered. However, I am not the grandpa barrier. Actually, to you, I should be called the God King.”

His words dumbfounded us. Dong Ri stuttered and said, “G-G- God King?”

“Correct. Could it be that you thought you would be able to breakthrough my barrier without my permission?”
We actually met a god. If that is the case, would he blame us for searching for him to obtain his Holy Sword? That should not be the case as the previous light was definitely released by him. If he had intended to harm us, he wouldn’t have saved us. However, I can’t be too complacent. I should be more vigilant. Thinking this, I said, “God King, we are here to find the Holy Sword. If you do not wish for us to obtain the Holy Sword, we will leave immediately. I just beg for you to let everyone else go. I shall shoulder the blame.”

Everyone heard what I said and began to comment angrily. Zhan Hu said, “No! If someone must be blamed, you should blame me instead. I am the eldest here. They are here under my encouragement.” Everyone else also pulled the blame back onto themselves. At this moment, the God King did not say anything. It was as if he was admiring our argument.

I shouted, “Stop fighting! You are here because of me. You are my best brothers and friends. I will definitely not allow you to be harmed for my sake.”

That benevolent voice echoed again, “Children, stop fighting. You are all good children and are not in the wrong. You were heavily tested before you arrived here. As you entered the God’s forest, you were all tested on your bravery, power, wisdom and temperament. If you had not passed, you would not have been able to come here.”

“That is to say, then, that you agree to bestow the Holy Sword upon us?”

“You don’t need to be so anxious Zhang Gong. Let me tell you all a story first.”
We all lifted our heads and quietly listened to the God King’s story.

“A long time ago, on this world, there was an extremely powerful race. They possessed wisdom, as great as that of the humans. It is not known how they were born because it happened too long ago. After generations of  evolution,  their race was really strong. As they were immortal, they lost their ability to reproduce. The total number of the clan remained at about three hundred. They were kind hearted, pure. They were also a species that loved all that is beautiful. They were known as the God Clan by later generations.”

After hearing this, I couldn’t help but let out an “Ahhh.”
The God King continued to say, “In the whole world’s surface, there were only 300 of them. It was really extremely lonely. After researching, they created all kinds of new species  to coexist with them. In that way, they thought that they could brighten and beautify the world. They continued to create the highly intelligent human race, freedom loving demon race, kind hearted Nature Elves, simple and sincere dwarves, power loving giant race, and the powerful dragon race. All of the races had their own good points. A swarm of races all over the continents unceasingly appeared, forming a flourishing scene. The God Clan became an object of reverence for all of the other clans, thus having an eminent position among them.”

The God King stopped speaking for a while, before saying, “Just when the whole world was filled with beauty, peace and harmony, out of nowhere, an evil clan emerged.  They  are known as the Monster Clan. They had a lot of powers that were not from the God’s Clan. Moreover, their numbers were large. Their mind set was full of thoughts for invasion, to terrorize, kill and steal. When they appeared in the world, they killed many races. Under the God Clan’s leadership, all of the clans formed an alliance to fight against the  Monster  Clan’s invasion.”

At this moment, the God king looked to really be in pain. It was as though he had returned to that moment pervaded by smoke.

Chapter 45 – God’s Mission

“What was the outcome?’’ I asked anxiously.

The benevolent voice resounded once again, “Children, do not be anxious and listen to my words carefully. The Monster Clan was very strong, with number greater than the God Clan’s. However, the combined allied races exceeded the Monster Clan. It was only after the brave sacrifices of many warriors from the various allied races with the God Clan that the flames of the Monster Clan’s rampage were suppressed. Under the leadership of the God Clan, all of the clans launched a final attack against the Monster Clan and finally annihilated them. The Leader of the God Clan and the King of the Monster Clan also fought against each other, resulting in both suffering serious injuries. However, the God Clan’s Leader still managed to seal the Monster King. After the battle, only a few members of the God Clan survived. All of the allied clans involved in the battle suffered great repercussions, especially the Dragon Clan. The Dragon Clan was extremely formidable when first created, so their reproduction rate was quickly restricted by the God Clan. After the battle, the Dragon Clan had decreased in number and today, only about 200 dragons remain. The God Clan slowly faded from history; while the human race, Magic race and Beast
race endlessly flourished and slowly became the new masters of the whole world. The story comes to an end here.”

“What happened to the God Clan afterwards?” Dong Ri questioned.

“After listening to this story, you should know that I am the God King and one of the last few members of the God Clan. We finally sealed the Monster King with the assistance of the God Clan Alliance after the yearlong war but suffered  serious injuries. To this day, even after hundreds of thousands of years have passed, we have still not fully recovered. Currently, you may be wondering how the story I just told you is related to obtaining the Holy Sword. I told you this story so you can understand the reason why I am now requesting your help.”
Xing Ao unusually said, “Do you also need our help?’

Zhan Hu, who was standing at the side, pulled Xing Ao closer and interrupted him by whispering, “Don’t make irresponsible remarks!”

The God King laughed and said, “’It does not matter, what he says is true. I do indeed need your help. Actually, you are also helping yourselves as this matter relates to the whole world’s life or death.”

Ah~ thinking that this was a really serious situation, I asked, “In the end, what happened? Did the Monster King break through your seal? Even your God Clan barely managed to win, what can we humans do to help?”

“You are half right. This does involve the Monster King, but he has not broken free from my seal yet. He has slowly regained his strength from hundreds of thousands of years of cultivation after I sealed him. He has begun to continuously attack the barriers of the residences of Gods. Once, one of the God Clan’s member was careless and allowed a bit of the monstrous energy to escape. That monstrous energy contained a portion of the Monster King’s power and awareness so it started to cause harm to the world. We cannot both keep the Monster King from escaping and also go out to fight his clone that is seeking to destroy the world. Thus, I am asking you to find and eliminate his clone.”

”Can we really do it? How strong is he?” Xiu Si asked.

“Although that  is  only  a  small  portion  of  his  power,  it  is
indeed still very strong. It is not something that you can fight against with your current capability. You must continue to improve your skills, before you will be capable of eliminating him. If you can eliminate the Monster King’s clone, we can gather all of our powers to eliminate the remaining monster power in the seal to make him perish forever.”

“Why were you all unable to annihilate him initially?” I asked curiously.

The God King sighed and said, “The war left us too weakened and if we had eliminated him at that moment, the Monster Clan would have perished. However, at that time, I believed that all of the clans possessed the right to survive and that as time flowed, the Monster King might be redeemed. During that moment of soft heartedness, I decided to only seal him. However, I didn’t expect that even after thousands of years, his innately evil character had not weakened at all. Currently, it turns out that it is an extremely grueling task to try and eliminate him. If you can eliminate his clone that has escaped
into this world, it will decrease his total power and allow us to annihilate him once and for all.”

As we listened to this point, we finally understood what the God King meant. Thinking in my heart, does this not mean we are going to throw our lives away? Who knows how strong the Monster King really is?”

In order to escape the situation, I asked, “Can we really find him? Is he out in the world causing harm again?”

The God King saw through my heart and said, “Child, continuing to avoid the situation is not a solution, the only solution is to face him. The Monster King has already spent many years in the world preparing. It is not just him; he has a
lot of subordinates. They are all moving in secret. Just like the human and demon races, the reason why the beast race fights is because of the Monster King’s instigation from the shadows. Heeding the call of the Monster King, they are trying to break the peace and harmony in the world. Once the Monster King starts to rule the world, the other races will be destroyed, including our God Clan.”

So it was this terrible, I had not even opened my mouth before Zhan Hu started to speak. “Please be reassured, we will definitely annihilate the Monster King.” Since he had already said that, all I could do was agree to help.

”If we plan on eliminating him, when should we start?” I asked.
The God King said, “You do not need to be impatient in this matter, and you also do not need to find him. When the world goes to war, he will appear. In this period of time before the war you need to work hard at training and improving yourself, and to assemble many people that share the same feelings and ambitions as you do. You must improve your abilities! As you are the whole world’s hope, you must work hard!”

Except me, everyone else was already burning with anger and one after another, they declared their heroic aspirations. Even though I was a little scared, for our survival I definitely could not cower.

“Will you be giving us the Holy Sword to increase our strength?’’ It was necessary to negotiate some terms with the God King so as to increase our survival rate and safety while carrying out the task.

“Little child, don’t worry, I will definitely give you some items to improve your strength. When you first arrived, I used my God Powers to help you shed your mortal bodies and exchange your bones. During your next training sessions, your strength will improve twice as much with only half the effort needed. Now, I will give each of you a few more good items. Listen to me, go and stand in front of the center of the God’s image.”

“Zhan Hu, I shall grant you the protection armor of a war god, I hope for you to become a genuine war god.” Zhan Hu walked in front of the lofty image of God and a golden light shone on his body. After the golden light flashed, a dark blue body armor and helmet appeared on Zhan Hu’s body. A three pronged helmet appeared on his head. In the center of the helmet’s crest, there was an oval, blue colored gemstone. There were four layers to the shoulder protection. The top layer was in line with his shoulders. At every succeeding layer, it was shorter than the previous layer. The last two layers slightly pointed downwards. The chest armor was also large. At the center of his chest, there was an oval, blue colored gem similar to the one on his helmet, but much larger. For the abdomen part of the chest armor, it
had a similar shape as Zhan Hu’s muscles. His legs and the arms had also been surrounded by scale-like pieces of armor, and even his hands had been completely covered. Lastly, there was a black cape that appeared on his back. With Zhan Hu standing two meters tall, he showed a formidable and majestic look. He really looked as if a war god had just been revitalized.

Chapter 46 – God’s reward

Zhan Hu looked at his new armor and tried moving in it. Anyone could see that he was very excited. He fell to his knees and respectfully kowtowed towards the God King three times, with his head touching the ground each time, before saying, “Your Majesty, I will definitely not let you down.  The eradication of the Monster King will become my only goal.’’

The God King praised him and said, “Good, you must do well in your cultivation so that you will be worthy of using this War God’s armor.”

Zhan Hu walked back to the team and said, “Wearing this armor, I feel like my whole body is filled with power. It is weightless and the feeling when wearing it is just amazing.’’
Everyone looked at him enviously and wondered what they would get.

The God King spoke again, “Next, Xiu Si.’’

When he heard the God King’s command, Xiu Si immediately walked in front of the God statue. The God King said, “Xiu Si, I shall grant you the Sky God’s horn. By using it, you can recover your life’s vitality, so long as you are not yet dead.”

The same golden light flashed, and a small, delicate horn suddenly appeared in Xiu Si’s hand.

“As for how to use it, you will have to rely on your  own abilities to figure it out.’’

Xiu Si bowed towards the God King and respectfully said, “Thank you for your gift, Your Majesty.” After saying that, he walked back to where the team was standing. He looked at the horn that had a spiraling line of shining golden light on it and fiddled with it admiringly.

“Next, Xing Ao.” After hearing his name, Xing Ao moved as quickly as possible to stand in front of the statue. With his eyes filled with expectation, he looked at the God statue.
“Xing Ao, I shall grant you the Titan God’s hammer. Although you have been using a heavy sword, once you start using the hammer, your power should increase greatly.’’ A golden light flashed, and a 1.5 meter long handle and 50 cm in diameter hammer suddenly appeared in Xing Ao’s hand. Judging from his relaxed posture, it seemed that the hammer was not too heavy.

“Thank you for your gift, Your Majesty.” Xing Ao was extremely satisfied with his new weapon and ran back to the team in high spirits.

“Gao De.” The God King spoke again and Gao De elatedly ran to stand in front of the God statue.

“I shall grant you the Lightning God’s shield. You can use it to
block any kind of physical attack.” The golden light flashed, and a small, exquisite shield with a diameter of ten centimeters suddenly appeared on Gao De left arm.

“Thank you for your gift, Your Majesty.” Gao De looked at his tiny shield and was a little unsatisfied.

Dong Ri and I were the only ones left, yet to receive any gift. I could not refrain myself from muttering to myself, why have I not been called out yet? The next one should be me.

“Dong Ri.”

Dong Ri came forward and said, “Yes.”

“I shall grant you the Wind God’s bow. I hope you will will bring splendor to the Wind God’s archery.” A golden light flashed, and a small, delicate golden short bow appeared in Dong Ri’s hand.

“Thank you for your gift, Your Majesty.”

“Good. I hope that all of you can fully understand your weapon. You must use your hearts to communicate with them,
in order to pull out their true powers. Every Godly weapon has its own special spiritual method. As for how to use it, you will have to rely on your own abilities. Therefore, you must train harder and improve your strength. You must not become arrogant or impatient. Only then will you not let me down.”

Except for me, everybody bowed at the same time and said, “We shall follow and respect Your Majesty’s tutelage.”

I looked left and right. Everyone had a Godly weapon, only I did not have one. Did I offend the God King just now? I also desperately wanted a Godly weapon.

I asked carefully, “God King, why did I not receive a weapon?”

The God King laughed and said, “And I thought you were not anxious at all, haha.” Could it be that even God could tease people?

I awkwardly scratched my head and said, “I am definitely anxious as the Holy Sword is my purpose for coming here.”

“Good, come forward.” Is it finally my turn? That’s great! I hurriedly ran in front of the God statue, and waited to receive the treasure that I long yearned for.
“I shall grant you the Radiant Holy Sword. I hope that you will use it to lead everyone in  annihilating  the  monsters.” That’s just too amazing! With the name of Radiant, it must be of extraordinary power. This was different from everyone else. There was no golden light that shone on me, instead a golden ball slowly flew toward me. I reached my hand out to receive it, but when once it came in front of me, it instantly entered my chest and vanished.

What is going on? I touched my chest. Where is the Radiant Holy Sword? Where is it?

“Stop looking for it, the Radiant Holy Sword is already in your body. However, with your current abilities, you are still incapable of using its power.”
“If that is the case, then why can everyone else use their weapons?”

The God King’s voice rung in my ears, as though I was the only one that could hear it, saying, “They can only use a very small portion of their Godly weapons’ powers. Their Godly weapons are second rank Godly weapons, so they are easier to control. On the other hand, the Radiant Holy Sword used to be my companion sword. I had previously given the sword to the Radiant God’s battle angel, Mi Jia Lei, until the great war of the Gods against the Monsters. For the final victory, he sacrificed himself. At that moment, I took back the sword. Currently, the difference between your power and the Holy Sword’s power is significant. Therefore, you will need to allow the Holy Sword to temporarily sleep in your body. Once you obtain  sufficient power to use it, it will naturally awaken.”

I understand what is going on now. “When will I be able to wield enough power to use it?”

“That will be your next goal. At the west border of the human and Devil lands, there is a place called Sky Splitting  Great Valley. You must head there. That year before the Holy God’s battle angel, Mi Jia Lei, died, some of the power was shifted there. A magic spell was used to seal the power. You just need to go there and obtain the Holy God’s inheritance in order for the Holy Sword to be at its full power. However, you need not be anxious. You still need to work hard on your training. From my estimation, in the coming five years, the Monster King will not have sufficient energy. During this time frame, you have to improve yourself. As your power increases, your chance of receiving the inheritance increases as well.”

So it turned out to be like that. I had already gotten the Godly weapon, but I had no way of taking it out for everyone to have a look.
The God King said, “Children, you all have received Godly weapons. I shall now teach you a magic spell. This spell is an important spell that can be used to hold back the Monster King. Once your powers are close to the War God’s powers, you can then start to practice the spell, but Zhang Gong’s requirement to practice the spell with the others will be much higher. He must become a Grand Magister before he can practice the spell together with the team.”

I interrupted and said, “What must I accomplish to become a Grand Magister? From what my teacher said before, the inner body has to form six Gold Dans. Is that all? “

The God King said, “You got only a portion correct. That is when you reach six apertures, which are the Gold Dans you just spoke of, you are certainly entering the grand magister’s realm. However, initially you will only be slightly stronger  than  a sword saint warrior. You must train until you reach nine apertures. Only then will you become a true grand magister. The nine  apertures  are  not  literally  the  nine  Gold Dans  you
mentioned before. Nine is only a figurative number. It is really when your body does not have any space not possessing a Gold Dan. When your whole body becomes the largest possible Gold Dan, you will finally reach the true realm of a Great Magister. At that point, you will have sufficient Godly powers to fight against the Monsters.”

The God King once again used a voice only I could hear, and said, “You just need to receive the Holy God’s inheritance. Probably at that time, you will be able to break through to the grand magister’s realm. Therefore, you must head there.”

Chapter 47 – The Forbidden

“Alright, I will definitely head there.” In order to be able to use the Holy Sword’s power and become a Grand  Magister, there is no possibility that I will not head there.

“I shall first teach you a spell chant. After that, you will have to figure it out on your own.” After speaking, six golden lights shone from the God’s image, especially aimed at our upper dantian. We all felt as though something was added to our minds.

The God King said, “I have already engraved the spell’s chants in your minds so you will remember them forever.”
After a moment of haziness, a line of small words distinctly appeared.

We subconsciously started to read those small words.

Zhan Hu said, “The God King bestowed upon me the War God’s armor. No evil shall pass me for I shall obstruct the evil Monsters.”

Xiu Si said, “The God King bestowed upon me the Sky God’s horn. My horn’s roar will pierce through the nine heavens.”
Xin Ao said, “The God King bestowed upon me the  Titan God’s hammer. I will shake the heavens and move the earth to protect the righteous path

Gao De said, “The God King bestowed upon me the Lightning God’s shield. Even ten thousand blades shall not stop me.”

Dong Ri said, “The God King bestowed upon me the Wind God’s bow. My ethereal arrows will flash rapidly and violently.”

I said, “The God King bestowed upon me the Radiant Holy Sword. It shall shine with the soaring radiance of the vault of the heavens.”

“That’s enough, stop chanting. If you continue to chant the spell, you will not be able to stop it. Only by improving yourselves will you start to understand how powerful the spell is. In the God’s Clan, this spell is regarded as a top grade spell. It will be much more powerful than your human’s  forbidden spells. Therefore, I shall name it as the top spells of spells– All God’s Awakening Symphony.”

We listened to what the God King told us and stopped chanting the spell. Although the spell was incomplete, we could still imagine how powerful the spell would have been if we had finished the chants.

The God King said, “That will be all. Children, I have already explained and given you everything I wanted to give to you. For the rest of the mission, you will have to rely on your own
abilities. I believe that you will definitely be able to annihilate all of the Monsters, bringing harmony and peace back to the world for all eternity.”

At this moment, I was moved as I listened to the God’s rousing speech. We all deeply bowed towards the God’s image.

The God King said, “It’s alright, you do not need to do that. Your Godly weapons can be hidden in your bodies. They rely on your control of your spiritual power. When you meet the Monster King and his subordinates, I hope that you will not expose your powers too early. Even if you are just training to use the Godly weapons, you have to find an isolated area to train. I shall now send you out of the God’s forest. For the next five years, you have to work hard at your training. I plead for you to do just that. After today, this Godly forest will cease to exist and become an ordinary forest. After you leave, I will head back to the God’s shrine and join up with the rest of the God Clan’s members to strengthen the Demon King’s seal. Children, we shall meet again.”

We kneeled down and I said to the God’s image, “In our heart, you will forever be our God. We will miss you.”

The God’s King laughed and said, “Wait until you annihilate
the Monster King, we will still meet again. By my title as the Gods’ King, send the humans and elf before me back to where they came.” A large golden halo shone from the God’s image and covered us. With a flash of the light, we had returned to the front of the Gods’ forest.

If there were not any signs of the shining Godly weapons in our hands and bodies; it was as though nothing had happened. We looked at each other, feeling as if we had returned to reality again.

Zhan Hu sighed and said, “I did not believe that after this dangerous experience, we had all actually inherited Godly weapons. Now, we have found our next goal. We must work hard!”

Xiu Si twiddled with the Sky King’s bugle horn and said, “That’s right! We must not let the Monster King succeed.”

“Let’s go, we shall visit the Nature Elf village before we head back.” I knew that everyone would soon have to split up, as we all have our own personal issues to settle.
“You all try to keep your Godly Weapons inside your bodies. We cannot always bring them around with us. Otherwise, we would be known as Gods that had descended, haha.”

Xin Ao brandished his Titan God’s hammer and said, “How?
My Godly weapon is so big. Can I really keep it in my body?”

I chuckled after hearing what he said. “These Godly weapons can exist as pure energy so they will not take up any space in your bodies. You just need to think of them returning into your bodies.”

After saying so, the Wind God’s bow in Dong Ri’s hands instantly vanished. He elatedly said, “I succeeded! “In order to familiarize himself with the action, he tried to bring it out and
send it back in a couple of times. Everyone did as I told them to. After a few moments, they completely mastered the action of summoning their Godly weapons.

The Nature Elves village was just as beautiful as the first time we had arrived. Since it was daytime, the Nature Elves were busy working. By returning here, I felt as though I had come home. Just as we reached the entrance of the village, we were discovered. A young elf flew over and said, “Zhang Gong, you all have returned!”

“That’s right! How is the village? Is it alright? Did the dark elves attack again?” I amiably asked him.

“No, they did not dare to come again. Even if they do, they
will experience the might of light magic.”

“That’s right. You should spend more time practicing light magic when you are free. Once light magic combines with your innate abilities, you will never need to fear them again.”

At this moment, the Nature Elf King brought over four elders and said, “We welcome your safe return. Come, let’s enter the village.”

Only then did I suddenly remember that I was still at the village entrance. We started to follow the Nature Elf King. We passed through the familiar route and reached the conference lounge. Except for the four elder elves, the Nature Elf  King made all of the elves leave. The fact that we had gotten Godly
weapons was a secret so only the Nature Elf King and the four elders could know.

Nature Elf King asked, “How was it? Did you gain any profits from coming here?”

I told him all about our dangerous experiences, but left out the part where we all got Godly weapons. I just explained the part where the God changed our bodies.

After listening to us, the Nature Elf King and the four elders displayed an expression of reverence. The Nature Elf King said, “I hadn’t expected that you would be approved by the God King. Be at ease, when you have to fight the Monster King, we, the Nature Elves, will also take part. For the world’s peace and
harmony, this is what we should do.”

Zhan Hu smiled, “That’s great! With your help, our fighting power will increase. That’s right, do you still have any more of your fruits wine? Can you bring some out?”

The four elders showed fearful expressions, and the  third elder said, “I am afraid that at the moment we don’t have any. You drank all of the wine when you were here previously.” Actually, they still had five more bottles of wine, but when I was leaving the village previously, I had asked for them. This time, they really did not have any more wine.

After hearing the third elder’s words, everyone except for me, showed disappointed expressions.

To stop putting them on the spot, I said, “We would like to rest here for the day and head back tomorrow. The God King said that we had approximately five years before the war. We also had no knowledge of his plans. During this time frame, we have to work harder in our training as preparations  to annihilate the Monster King.”

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