Chapter 47: The Elder's Secret!
Translator: Mogumoguchan/Zenobys Editor: - -
Su Ming walked quietly within the walls of the mudstone city belonging to Wind Stream Tribe. In front of him, the tribe member who was serving as his guide walked with an arrogant air that Su Ming could clearly see.
'He does indeed have the right to be arrogant...'
Su Ming looked at the city before him and at the mudstone houses. In his mind, he remembered the houses made of wood and hides in his tribe. Compared to them... no, there was in fact no room for comparison.
During the journey, Su Ming saw far too many members of Wind Stream Tribe. In fact, he had never even seen so many Berserkers in all the 16 years of his life. The city was bustling with activity. Even the beast skins the men and women wore were of much better quality than Su Ming's.
There were even a number of them who wore sackcloth that only the elder could wear in their tribe. These people were all Berserkers with exceptionally strong presence of Qi.
'A middle sized tribe...'
Su Ming looked at his surroundings, then at the walls of the city far into the distance. He remembered seeing six other tribes, which were like Dark Mountain Tribe outside the city walls when he was still in midair. It was obvious that the citizens there did not have the right to live within the city permanently. They could only live outside.
On the way, Su Ming saw a lot of houses which were used for trading purposes. There may not have been a lot of people there but each person who walked in and out of the houses, shook Su Ming's heart.
The land which he walked on was not made out of dirt either. It was covered by rocks which were pressed flat using some unknown method. When he stepped on it, the ground was hard. Su Ming, who was used to soft terrain, was not used to it.
Su Ming also saw several giant bows about hundreds of feet long hanging on the walls of the mudstone city. They were entirely black and gave off a vengeful aura. It made those who looked at them chills down their spines.
"Are you done looking?" A piercing voice turned Su Ming's attention away from his surroundings. It was the guide from Wind Stream Tribe. He looked at Su Ming as he smiled.
His smile had an air of arrogance which turned it into a mocking smile. He was not laughing at Su Ming alone but jeering at the people who came from smaller tribes and had similar expressions of awe.
"You can look around later. You'll be staying here for a while so, you can wander around as much as you like any time you want. I suggest that you get out of your house at night. You should go out and walk around. The night scenery in your tribe cannot compare with the likes of the night scenery in Wind Stream Tribe."
"Follow me now. We can't have the Elder waiting for long." The tribe member patted Su Ming's shoulder, then turned around and walked forward even more quickly.
Su Ming followed quickly in silence.
Right in the center of the mudstone city within the pentagonal altar, were three secret rooms. The Elder of Wind Stream Tribe, the man in purple who had reached the Transcendence Realm was sitting in one of the secret rooms with his legs crossed. The elder of Dark Mountain Tribe, Mo Sang was sitting across him calmly.
Between them was a chessboard. Most of the chess pieces were made from animal bones and looked rough on the edges. The chessboard was made from a big stone with squares carved on it.
Besides the chessboard, there was also a stone cup the size of a fist in each of their hands. There was hot steam coming from the cups, along with a nice fragrance spreading around the room.
"Mo Sang, when you came back, you gave me this chessboard and the chess pieces. You even taught me how to play chess. You must have wanted to avoid from being lonely and also wanted someone to cure your boredom." The man in purple picked up a beast bone chess piece and placed it on a part of the chessboard. Then he lifted his head and smiled.
"This chessboard came from the Taia Tribe. I heard that an Ancient from Taia made it in the image of an item from a land faraway... It's a pity. I haven't touched this in many years. Now, I can't win against you anymore." The elder took a chess piece and placed it on a corner of the board as he spoke softly.
"Mo Sang, I have always admired you." The man in purple sighed as he looked at Mo Sang, who looked old and wizened. Memories of when they were young appeared in his head. In his memories, the person before him had been so energetic and proud... Among those of the same age, there was no one who did not know his name... Yet, who would have thought the prodigy in the past would become such a wizened old man.
"You should not have been born in Dark Mountain Tribe... If you had agreed to the elder's promise and became his Berserker's Son, the Elder of Wind Stream Tribe now would not be me, but you..."
"Besides, you wouldn't have found your training to be so difficult. You should have reached the Transcendence Realm a long time before I did... The elder even mentioned that you were the one who held the most promise to reach the Bone Sacrifice Realm among all the people he's met in his life!" When he spoke of the Bone Sacrifice Realm, a bright light appeared in the man's eyes and they were filled with longing.
"Bone Sacrifice... Bone Sacrifice... Sacrifice the 13th piece of your spine to break the seal of destiny, thereby turning the 13th piece of your spine into the true Berserker Bone, as obtained by the Ancients of the Berserker Tribe!" As the man in purple spoke, the light in his eyes dimmed.
"I can't do it..."
Mo Sang was silent. When he heard the mention of the Transcendence Realm, there was bitterness and nostalgia on his face.
"If only you had agreed to the elder's promise that year and took Wen Yan as your wife and joined Wind Stream Tribe, the elder would have used all the resources within the tribe to help you sacrifice your bones! If you had reached the Bone Sacrifice Realm, the Wind Stream Tribe would not have been hidden away here..." The man in purple smiled bitterly.
"Jing Nan, it is all in the past now," Mo Sang said slowly.
"That's right, it's all in the past now..." When the man in purple heard Mo Sang calling his name, he shook his head and sighed.
"You were only willing to see me, your old friend this time because of the child who was standing beside you, right...? He should be the baby you brought back that year," Jing Nan looked at Mo Sang and spoke slowly.
"That is one of the reasons!" Mo Sang raised the stone cup and blew at the beverage. Once some of the heat went away, he took a gentle sip.
"I could tell that the blood red moon from before was related to Black Mountain Tribe... Black Mountain Tribe's Bi Tu must have found another way..." The elder placed the stone cup down.
"I won't hide from you. He will arrive at the Transcendence Realm anytime now! Mo Sang, if you ask me to kill him, then..." Jing Nan hesitated for a moment, then he shook his head.
"I can't do that. If he manages to reach Transcendence Realm, it will be a great help to Wind Stream Tribe. Even if you agree to my request all those years ago, I still won't do it."
"It's fine." The elder smiled lightly. He expected this answer a long time ago anyway. Jing Nan was not as friendly as he seemed. They both knew more than anyone about their dispute.
"You have your own problems, I understand. This is between me and him.It must come to an end eventually! I came here today to make a trade with you!"
"Oh? Go on." The Elder of Wind Stream Tribe, Jing Nan spoke slowly as a light flashed briefly in his eyes.
The elder spoke softly. His voice was faint and only Jing Nan could hear him. Once Jing Nan heard it, his demeanor did not change. However, he closed his eyes and appeared to be deep in thought.
The elder did not urge him. Instead, he took the stone cup and sipped his drink slowly.
Time passed by slowly and silence filled the room. They had no idea how much time had passed when suddenly, a reverential voice was heard outside the secret room.
"Elder, I've brought Su Ming here."
"Send him in." Jing Nan still kept his eyes closed.
Footsteps gradually approached from afar amid the silence of the room.
Su Ming was very nervous. He walked forward one step at a time. The light was not bright inside the room. It was in fact, rather dark. As he moved forward to the end of the corridor, he saw the elder and the man in purple in the secret room.
When he saw the elder, Su Ming let out a sigh of relief.
"Su Ming, come to my side." The elder smiled and waved at Su Ming. Su Ming walked forward quickly and stood behind the elder with his head bowed. He did not speak.
"Tell me your second request." After a moment, Jing Nan opened his eyes and a brilliant light manifested for a moment in his eyes. He stared at the elder, Mo Sang and continued to speak slowly.
"I want a drop of your Berserker Blood!" The elder also stared at Jing Nan and spoke in the same manner.
Jing Nan immediately frowned. All Berserkers had Berserker Blood but he was a powerful Berserker in the Transcendence Realm. His Berserker Blood was extremely valuable. Every time he gave a drop, he needed to train for a long time before he could recover it. Besides the members of his tribe who had extraordinary talent and proved to be exceptional, he seldom granted his Berserker Blood.
Jing Nan looked past Mo Sang at Su Ming silently.
Although Su Ming lowered his head, he could still feel the man in purple's gaze on him like a needle.
"Is it for him? This child is ordinary. He will find it hard trying to absorb one drop of my blood into his veins. It'll just be a waste. Change your request." Jing Nan averted his gaze and spoke calmly.
"These are my two requests. I will not change them. If you agree to it, I will teach you the Ancient Berserker Art - the true Awakening!" Mo Sang handed the stone cup to Su Ming and motioned for him to drink from it.
Once Su Ming took the cup, he did not hesitate and drank the whole thing in one mouthful. A comfortable wave of heat immediately spread throughout his body.
Jing Nan frowned. He sank into his thoughts for a moment before he looked at Mo Sang. All of a sudden, he spoke.
"Alright, I'll agree to your two requests. But for the Berserker Blood ... You should know that there are three stages to the test. I will give a drop of my blood to the top three contestants in each stage. To avoid any wastage, I will add a condition. If this child can get into the top 40 in any one of the stages in this test, I will give him a drop of my Berserker Blood!"
"If he doesn't, you must change your request!"
The elder thought about his words and believed that the man before him was making things difficult. After a moment of thought, he nodded. In his head, he was already thinking about how he could benefit Su Ming similarly if he had to change his request.
Su Ming listened to the exchange and looked at the white hair on the elder's head as well as the wrinkles on his face. He thought of the ridicule delivered by the old woman from Dark Mountain Tribe and Bei Ling's indifferent attitude towards him. He even thought about the loneliness that he grew up with and how he would sit alone looking at the night sky. He would imagine the things written in the beast skin scroll as he gazed into the sky. All these things enveloped Su Ming's thoughts. They transformed into a strength and resolution he never had before!
This resolution was even stronger than the one when he worshiped the statue of the God of Berserkers!
The elder stood up and motioned Su Ming to follow him. Just as he was about to leave, Jing Nan stared at Mo Sang. After a moment of hesitation, he spoke abruptly.
"Mo Sang, I have a question that has been plaguing my mind for dozens of years. I must ask you... Since you're in Wind Stream Tribe now, I hope you will answer my question!"
The elder did not stop. He continued walking as Su Ming followed him. Jing Nan's voice traveled towards them from behind.
"You are only at the ninth level of the Blood Solidification Realm but from the past and even now, why is it that I can feel a faint hint of Transcendence on you?!" The man in purple spoke quickly but he did not reveal all his thoughts. He could not tell Mo Sang that the aura within him made him feel slightly alarmed.
He had that feeling of terror back then, and he still got the same feeling at that point in time!