Chapter 460: Guarantor
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Shi Mu hadnt even opened his mouth when Cai immediately jumped. You piece of red-haired turd, keep your crap to yourself!
The Demon race youth froze at the unexpected outburst at first, but quite as soon as the words set on him, his face twisted into an expression of fury, his body flashing with a coat of crimson red light. Meanwhile, a few young Demon race individuals looked provocative as well.
Control yourself! This area is under the governance of Qing Lan City! Among the men in red robes, a red-haired elderly man frowned and scolded his own juniors without shooting as much as a side-way glance at Shi Mu.
The youths seemed to be frighteningly respectful of the red-haired elderly, hence, despite his fury at Cais comeback, he managed to squeeze out only another stink-eye at Shi Mu and Cai before the bubbling red aura around him dissipated instantly.
Of course, Shi Mu took no notice of the youths facehe was already drawn to the elderly man, his heart beating a little faster. This elderly man may have consciously kept his own aura to himself, but Shi Mu could still feel the immense pressure oozing out from his figure. It was palpable that the elderly man was a Heaven-rank powerhousein fact, Shi Mu was quite certain that his prowess would have been even more superior than the Azure Ape King.
Cai pranced on top of Shi Mus shoulder, making ridiculously down-putting faces towards the Demon race youth.
Thats enough. Stop it, you. Shi Mus hand held onto Cais body and gave a little budge before joining in one of the queues.
He looked down on you, Shi Tou! Are you really gonna just stand here and take that insult?! Cai protested sourly. Besides, I dont think hes as powerful as he thinks he is!
Shi Mu smiled faintly without saying anything. After going through this much of experiences in life, Shi Mu had long graduated from his old impulsive naturewhy would something as trivial as this provoked his temper? It would be a bigger loss to accidentally raised the ire of that Heaven-rank elderly man over this.
As he mused about these, he produced the green token the Green Ape had given him onto his palm.
The last strand of the White Apes spirit residing within Heavenrousers unique dimension had claimed that this one object alone would be enough for one to be streamlined into Qing Lan Holy Sect without any need for a guarantor, but Shi Mu wasnt going to buy a piece of information that hasnt been updated for thousands of years completely. He decided to do a bit more research on this.
The queue took an hour before Shi Mu finally reached the custom. There, after paying some Spirit Stones, he was in.
Whoa! He blurted out a soft exclamation as soon as he entered the interior of the city.
The streets and the curbs were wide, but the buildings were all fashioned out directly from treesmore specifically, all of the shops, vendors and other sorts of rooms were built between actual, living trees. He turned around, casting his gaze far, and still, he couldnt find an exception to their architecture. If one were to skim around the city carelessly, they might think they had just entered another nondescript patch of woods for a second.
What a peculiar bunch. Are trees really a better home than actual houses? Cai muttered.
Shi Mu was only stunned for a very brief while, with a dull surprised expression being all there was on his face before he continued his stroll in the city.
He walked on, unobstructed, for a while before his feet shuffled to a stop. His eyes had rested on a shop lying next to the street, and after a little bit of thought, he started towards it.
From the looks of it, it was a modest, small shop selling weapons. The reason why Shi Mu chose to visit it, however, was because he noticed that the shopkeeper was a human. He could tell from his skin, his figure, his facial features and many intuitive details that he was staring at an actual human being other than himself That revelation had endeared Shi Mu a little.
Oh great, Shi Tou. Youre up to grinding some intel again, arent you? Cai started to flap its wings above Shi Mus shoulder. Spare me from this, alright? Ill be walking around seeing nice things outside. See ya.
Not so fast, Cai! We dont know about the rules of this city yet. What if you broke one accidentally or got yourself captured? Shi Mu reacted quickly.
Hey, Shi Tou. Do you need me to remind you how much of a nag youre starting to become? Im kidding! I get you, buddy. Relax, Cai said before flying towards the horizon with a soft string of cackles.
Shi Mu shook his head a little helplessly. He wasnt actually worried about the parrot, thoughCai was a scaredy-cat (bird, to be exact) with a mind much attuned to avoiding troubles when left on its own, so he was quite confident that Cai would be alright.
He strode into the shop and was instantly greeted warmly by a middle-aged man who looked to be about in his forties, Welcome, guest, to my humble weapon shop. How shall I address you, good sir, and what shall I get for you?
It was the shopkeeper himself, who also took notice of the shared species between himself and Shi Mu. One could infer that the twinkling in the shopkeepers eyes was likely stemmed from seeing a fellow human.
Shi. The names Shi. You need not mind me, Sir. Im just going looking around, Shi Mu replied as he started to walk around the shop. There wasnt any customer in the shop for the time being other than himself.
East-Saint truly was a planet ennobled by being the host of the Holy Land of Qing Lan. Even a normal shop in Qing Lan City, such as this one, could boast an arsenal of the top tier, high-quality weapons, and tools. Even the least upscale tools in the shop were High-rank weapons. Nearby, an array of Spirit Tools with quite impeccable quality lined up neatly for every customer to inspect.
I see, Sect Fellow Shi, am I right? This lowly one is Huang Zhen, the humble shopkeeper of this shop. Please, go ahead and take a gander. If you need my service anyhow, please dont hesitate, The middle-aged shopkeeper said with a small friendly chuckle.
Shi Mu decided that there wasnt anything in the shop that had taken his fancy, so he returned to Huang Zhen. Most of the things here are of the run-of-the-mill type that really doesnt do much for me. However, I have a few things with me that I wonder if you would be interested in.
Dont you worry about that, Sect Fellow Shi. This shop may be humble in size, but the name Haoran Corp isnt humble in its influence and reputation at all, I can assure you. Be it buying, selling, getting information and intel, or any other kinds of business, we are all game, The shopkeeper gave Shi Mu an enormous grin brimmed with confidence.
Haoran Corp? Shi Mu was quite shocked. Throughout his two years of traveling through planets within Magnum Solis, he had gotten to make out a beginners map of powerful, influential forces operating in Star Field.
One of these forces was the Haoran Corpa large, mysterious group that had established multiple branches in many of the planets in Magnum Solis, specialized in all kinds of trades including hotels, intelligence brokering, pills, weaponry, as well as auctions. It didnt take a native of the Cerulean Sea Star to see the similarity between them and the Heavenly Wu Chamber of Commercein fact, they were pretty much the latter in a galactic scale.
There were even rumors that Haoran Corps provided shadier services once the price was rightwhich included assassination requests.
Now I see, Shi Mu said. So here they area few Spirit Tools that Ive obtained from the past. Could you please appraise their price for me, Sir Shopkeeper?
He waved and produced a few weapons before Huang Zhen. One of them was completely black, looking like a crescent-shaped hoe. Lying next to them was a pair of short Ji* and a single fan-made out of bones. All three of them were carved with rings of magical black glyphs which radiated a faint but menacing glow.
[Ji is an ancient Chinese hybrid weapon of a lance and a dagger-ax, used by mostly by cavalry and charioteers. Its a little bit like a Chinese version of a halberd just a bit.]
The best weapon of the trio was the crescent-shaped hoe. Every time Shi Mu picked the weapon up, he could hear very faint but spine-tingling howls coming from within the weapon as if some sort of demon had been sealed inside.
Huang Zhens eyes gleamed at the sight of the weapons and quickly dispatched a large drove of white light shrouding over the three weapons, shielding their aura from being detected by anyone outside. Then, he said, Remarkable! This is a top tier Spirit Tool, though it has quite an overwhelming touch of evil in it Oh, I know why now. Its crafted via the ancient ritualistic forging methods of warlocks. Anyone who possessed this weapon would never need to fear any enemy who had the same power rank as the possessor, you know. Are you sure you want to give it away, Sect Fellow Shi?
Shi Mu smiled. Of course. I want to sell it.
This weapon was obtained from his past travel in a desert, where he had eradicated a group of unethical bandits. The Earth-rank enemy leader had wielded it as his weapon, and though Shi Mu could tell it was a powerful weapon, he also knew that it was completely at odds with his own Real Qi attribute, so he never used it. Of course, by now, taking the took around had become a little bit too tedious.
Besides, Shi Mu needed to prepare a bit of funds for the upcoming Entrance Tournament.
As this is a formidable weapon forged using rare materials, it cannot be sold at a price too that is unworthy of its value. Now, seeing that you and I share a kind of kinship by being humans, Im gonna cut through the usual routine of announcing a low price and just tell you how much Im willing to give for these three sinister weapons, Huang Zhen said. Ill buy them for thirty million Spirit Stones.
Shi Mu lowered his head at the offer, silent.
Sect Fellow Shi, this is the highest price you could fetch for these three weapons. I can assure you that you wont be able to fetch a higher price in this city, Huang Zhen added hurriedly after seeing Shi Mus reaction.
After a while, Shi Mu finally nodded. Alright.
Huang Zhens face brightened up in joy. Quickly, he kept the three weapons safely and then handed a sack of Spirit Stones to Shi Mu. The latter scanned them with his Spiritual Energy and, after acknowledging their authenticity, nodded and took them in.
Pleasure doing business with you, Sect Fellow Shi. This shop welcomes you for any sort of tradingsatisfaction guaranteed! Huang Zhen said.
Shi Mu smiled faintly and nodded dismissively.
I noticed that you looked quite weary from travel, Sect Fellow Shi. Are you here for the Entrance Tournament of the Qing Lan Holy Sect?
Correct. This is my first time in the cityIm only here to get a chance in enrolling into the sect. However, Im not learned in the detailed process, so I was hoping the esteemed owner of this shop could give some pointers, Shi Mu replied, cupping his hands respectfully.
Huang Zhen fixed Shi Mu with eyes gleaming in a sort of unspecified sentiments as he replied slowly, Theres no need to be so formal, Sect Fellow Shi. We are kin via the merits of the same species of course, I would love to tell my fellow friends all that I know.
Shi Mu seemed to recognize the meaning hidden in Huang Zhens eyes.
As one of the three most famous holy land for cultivation within Magnum Solis, Qing Lan Holy Sect hosts a grand Entrance Tournament for all within the Star Field every ten years to accept newcomers that attract not only inhabitants of East-Saint itself, but also inhabitants of other planets or even other Star Fields. To join the exam, the first thing one must do would be to register themselves in Qing Lan Palace, but I gotta tell you, the registration process is long-winded and annoyingly demanding, Huang Zhen began.
Demanding? Are there requirements? Shi Mu asked.
Well, first, no participant under the age of a hundred years old. Second, no participant under Earth-rank.
Shi Mu was shocked. Achieving Earth-rank before a hundred years old was no small feat; But then again, when he thought about how many geniuses there must be out there in this expansive Star Field, he admitted that it was quite normal to impose such restrictions.
Next, those who would like to participate must possess an Invitation Token. Without that, your enormous, one-of-a-kind talent would not mean anything at all. No seat in the Tournament, no test.
Shi Mu sighed a breath of relief. Good thing Green Ape gave him that token.
Hmm, thats a look of someone whos prepared with that, isnt it, Sect Fellow Shi? Huang Zhen said, before adding, But thats not the end of the requirements. You need a guarantor.
G-guarantor? Shi Muss face fell.
Those who had the Invitation Token may not really possess extraordinary powers the Holy Sect is looking for, so they usually require some big names to act as the participants guarantor that the participant, indeed, achieves the standards, Huang Zhen explained. Frankly, I think the Holy Sects just trying to cut out a lot of work from the whole process of eliminating those who are sub-standard yet obtained the Invitation Token by some sort of luck.
Shi Mu nodded, but his face already grim. He was confident with his own skills, but his status as a newcomer to East-Saint meant that he had basically zero connection in the entire planet.
Where would he be able to get anyone to be his guarantor?
You dont have a guarantor, dont you? Huang Zhen watched his expression for a while and started. This lowly one can help you with that.
Shi Mus eyebrow raised.
We Haoran Corp has business dealings with a few high-profile elites of the Holy Sect, you know. If Sect Fellow Shi could fork out a certain number of Spirit Stones, this lowly one would be able to scout one of these big shots to act as your guarantor, Sir.