Chapter 89: A New Beginning
Great Qin Nation, Dongming Province, Sishui Prefecture, White Water City, Within an Inn:
"Have you heard? Something big happened in Hunluo Prefecture, in the Qizi County."
On the second floor, a cultivator wearing coarse robes was chatting with his four companions, who were all grouped around him. He looked wild and strong, and his eyebrows were especially thick, giving him an air of heroism.
This inn was known as Liushang Pavilion, the biggest inn in White Water City. There was a total of five floors, with each floor becoming progressively more expensive the higher a person climbed.
[TL note: Liushang has the meaning of flowing smoothly.]
The third floor and above required, besides a great reserve of silver taels, that one had sufficient status; wealth without status did not make one eligible to enter the higher floors.
Furthermore, the fifth floor of Liushang Pavilion was a legendary place that only entertained distinguished guests of similar rank to that of the White Water City Lord, and was normally not open for business.
Regular citizens normally dined on the first floor, while regular cultivators preferred to dine on the second floor. Since White Water City was close to the Savage Forest, it was rife with cultivators. Therefore, the second floor of Liushang Pavilion had the most traffic.
When his companion beside him heard that, he curiously said, "I have heard a little about this matter. There was a youth in Qizi County who killed ten Martial Saints and more than 200 Martial Grand Masters in a single day."
Another cultivator pitched in and said, "What I heard was 50 Martial Saints and 500 Martial Grand Masters."
When a certain youth beside the window on the second floor heard this, he choked and spat out the mouthful of wine he had swigged just now. He muttered to himself in his heart, Rumors... Oh rumors... At the rate they are spreading and growing, I'll soon be capable of killing Martial Kings with one palm strike.
The youth wiped away the stains around his mouth and picked up a piece of wood and a carving knife from the table, deciding to rather focus on his carving. The sunlight shined through the window onto his handsome face, giving it a faint golden glow.
The youth had an extremely serious expression on his face, which was complemented by a bearing so meticulous as to allude to the object in his hand being not a wooden carving but a priceless and precious treasure. His solemn, respectful, and focused expression gave him a certain charm and grace.
A white fox rested beside the youth. It looked absolutely adorable and was happily wolfing down a bowl of fish porridge. Before long, the bowl of fish porridge was empty.
It carefully climbed onto the table and licked the empty porcelain bowl, patting the right arm of the youth with its right paw.
The youth stopped what he was doing and looked at the Spirit Fox. He discovered that it was looking at him in a pitiful manner, with big round eyes that were misting up. Its other paw was clearly pointing at the empty porcelain bowl.
When the youth saw this, he smiled faintly, "Xiao Bai... Xiao Bai... You are truly a glutton."
"Waiter! Serve me another bowl of fish porridge, and give me the large one," the youth shouted loudly, placing the order.
Shortly after, the waiter ran over with a large bowl of porridge. Although he moved fast, his hands and feet were very stable. It was obvious that this waiter had cultivated martial arts to some degree.
The porridge was placed stably on the table without a drop of it spilling out. The waiter smiled and said, "The fish porridge, as ordered. If the Sir has any other requests, do let us know."
The youth waved his hands and and threw out a silver ingot as his tip. The waiter joyfully received it and quickly left after expressing his gratitude.
When the Spirit Fox saw the new serving of fish porridge, its pitiful expression immediately disappeared. It completely forgot about the youth's existence as it rushed to the fish porridge with a joyful expression on its muzzle.
The youth chided it playfully, "When there is food, you immediately forget about your master." Having said that, he paid it no further mind and continued to focus on carving the piece of wood in his hand.
This youth was the very Xiao Chen of Mohe City from the rumors. After he left the Xiao Clan, his immediate destination was Heavenly Saber Pavilion, seeking to enter their ranks in hopes of finding a way to awaken Ao Jiao, who was currently asleep inside the Lunar Shadow Saber.
However, after he left, he had a taste of just how massive this world was. Even the scale of the Great Qin Nation completely exceeded his imagination.
The Great Qin Nation, aside from the Imperial Capital and the Royal Court, had three provinces: Dongming Province, Xihe Province, and Nanling Province. Each province had three prefectures, and each prefecture had seven counties. The size of each county was already equivalent to half the size of his country in his previous life. One can only imagine how huge the size of the Great Qin Nation was.
[TL note: Given that the MC used Taobao and this is a chinese novel, my guess is that this country in question refers to China.]
The Mohe City that Xiao Chen came from was only an extremely ordinary city. There was still the Qizi County, Hunluo Prefecture, and Dongming Province above it.
The Heavenly Saber Pavilion was in the Xihe Province, relative to the Dongming Province; one was in the east and the other in the west. They were separated by tens of thousands of kilometers. Xiao Chen had already been on the road for two months. Along the way, he had discovered that every year, in the tenth month, the Heavenly Saber Pavilion would conduct an entrance exam in order to recruit new disciples.
The criterias of this entrance exam were very stringent. Xiao Chen calculated the time he had left. It was now the seventh month of the year, which was just three months away from the entrance exam of the Heavenly Saber Pavilion.
He intended to train himself through practical experiences for three months before leaving for Heavenly Saber Pavilion. This was to prevent himself from failing the entrance exam and having to wait for the tenth month of the next year to retake the test.
This White Water City was the capital of Sishui Prefecture, which sat on the borders of Dongming Province. Upon leaving the city, one could find the holy ground for training, Savage Forest. Furthermore, it was relatively closer to Xihe Province. Thus, Xiao Chen decided on carrying out his training in White Water City.
"Tong! Tong! Tong!"
The sound of footfalls began to emerge from the stairs to the second floor, followed shortly by the arrival of a crowd of people chatting merrily with one another before they made their way towards the third floor.
When the cultivators on the second floor saw who they were, they all fell silent. The earlier incredibly noisy floor instantly turned soundless. Everyone kept their heads down and maintained a low profile as they ate in silence.
One of the individuals in the crowd wore embroidered clothings and was very handsome. He was very pleased with the atmosphere on the second floor. He then turned and spoke to the girl beside him in a low voice.
No emotion could be seen on the girl's face. She just politely replied to the other person's words, and there was no expression of joy at all. In this very moment, her eyes lit up when she saw the Spirit Fox beside Xiao Chen at the window side.
This made her stop in her tracks, and the light in her eyes grew brighter. She slowly walked towards Xiao Chen's table; at a single glance, it was clear her gait had a certain grace and her disposition a certain beauty.
"Friend, is this Spirit Beast for sale?" the girl looked at the Spirit Fox for a long time until she could no longer resist asking. Her voice was melodious and delicate, and anyone who heard it would feel comfortable, while rooting those faint of heart with the desire to comply to her every whim.
Xiao Chen had noticed the figures of this group of people long ago. He raised his head and looked towards the girl. He praised her silently in his heart. This girl wore a green dress, and her eyebrows were picturesque; she had white teeth, bright eyes, and an almond shaped face with peach-like cheeks. All these combined with her exquisite green dress gave off the feeling of a refreshing beauty.
However, Xiao Chen had seen too many beautiful girls. The elegant fairy-like Feng Feixue or the irreproachable, sweet-tempered Xiao Yulan were not any whit inferior to this girl. Furthermore, there was that absolute beauty and femme fatale Yue Ying who made all others pale in comparison.
Xiao Chen quickly withdrew his gaze from her body and said indifferently, "If you truly understood, then you would not even mention buying it. Please leave."
Her heart trembled, as she thought it possible that Xiao Chen would reject her, but she had not expected Xiao Chen to be so direct, not showing any mercy.
Her pretty face looked distracted for a moment, and then she had an apologetic smile on as she said, "It is indeed by oversight. I underestimated the feelings of this brother towards his Spirit Beast. Only... does Brother have no intentions of selling it at all? If you tell me what you want, I will definitely think of a way to use it to exchange for the Spirit Beast."
What grand words, Xiao Chen smiled coldly to himself. This girl is indeed not simple. She's actually able to see through the bloodline of Xiao Bai... that it is the progeny of the Six-Tailed Spirit Fox.
As long as a naturally born Rank 6 Spirit Beast could mature, it would be like having a strong Martial King expert at one's side. Within Dongming Province, a Martial King was someone who even the big noble clans would do their utmost to recruit.
It was even to the point where, to some people, the number of Martial Kings a clan had under their banner represented the strength of that clan.
Xiao Chen guessed in his heart that she was probably clear on how he was only a Superior Grade Martial Disciple and thought that Xiao Chen had obtained the Spirit Fox by chance and was therefore oblivious to its value. Thus, she wanted to try and take advantage of that.
Thinking of this, Xiao Chen put down the wooden carving in his hand and smiled pleasantly, "You have to keep your word. As long as I ask for it, you will definitely do it?"
The girl saw that Xiao Chen was giving her some leeway, immediately feeling joy in her heart. She smiled brightly, "Of course I will keep it. As long as you ask for it, I will definitely do it."
Her words were very grand, but she expected Xiao Chen to be merely an ordinary Superior Grade Martial Disciple. One that had not seen much of the world and would not be able to ask for something of too high a price. With her clan's strength behind her, she was confident she could satisfy Xiao Chen's request.
A sincere and serious look appeared on Xiao Chen's face as he said, "Then give me a Heaven Ranked Spirit Weapon. How's that? It's a fair deal, and both of us will not suffer a disadvantage."
The girl's expression turned cold. She knew that Xiao Chen was messing with her. She looked meaningfully at him and then left slowly without saying anything else.
"Brat, you refuse a toast only to drink a forfeit. It is your fortune that Miss Duanmu wanted to buy your thing. Yet you spoke such nonsense. Are you seeking death?" behind the man dressed in embroidered clothing, a person dressed in servant's clothes said fiercely and viciously to Xiao Chen.
When the girl heard these words, she frowned slightly. It was clear that she was not pleased. The man dressed in embroidered clothing saw that his servant had made her unhappy in his attempt to suck up to her and hurriedly called for him to stop.
He turned his head to face Xiao Chen and said, "I'm Jiang Muheng. If you change your mind, you can come and find me at the Jiang Clan at any time."
"Miss Duanmu, let's go up first. Young Master Hua is still waiting for us on the fourth floor."
The group of people left Xiao Chen's table and headed towards the fourth floor. Xiao Chen extended his Spiritual Sense out and slowly followed this group of people.
"Go back and check on the background of that brat. If he does not have any notable background, then just snatch the Spirit Fox away. It is rare to come across something that Miss Duanmu likes."
"Young Master, is killing permitted?"
"Up to you, but everything must be done cleanly. I do not wish for Miss Duanmu to have any suspicions about this."
"Understood, Young Master, it shall be done by tomorrow morning. It's only a Superior Grade Martial Disciple. I can squash him with just one hand."
When the group of people went up to the fourth floor, Jiang Muheng had dragged his servant over to a corner and told him of his plans. However, he did not expect that Xiao Chen had noticed something was afoot and had used his Spiritual Sense to memorize every word he had just said.