Book 8 Chapter 8: Reputation
It was already winter and winter on Duanmu Continent was much colder. However, the cold of the outside world could not be compared with the cold within the general’s heart.
‘Teng Qingshan? It’s actually him!!!’
The general shivered uncontrollably. This was a physical reaction stemming from extreme terror. ‘Patriarch once said that this Teng Qingshan is the Martial Saint of the Golden Dan Innate Rank. Plus, even the Rising Sun Trading Company’s Great Elder treated him with courtesy. Even the Thunder Blade Martial Saint wasn’t worthy of being his opponent!
‘How did I provoke him?’ The general was stunned.
The entire Duanmu Continent only had a population of between two hundred and three hundred million. How many Golden Dan Innate Experts could there be?
According to the proportion in Yangzhou, Qing Hu Island and Gui Yuan Sect, they both had only about ten Golden Dan Innate Experts. Adding up the hidden and known Golden Dan Innate Experts on Duanmu Continent, Duanmu Continent probably only had about ten Golden Dan Innate Experts! However, in the whole world, there were a dozen powerful clans and even more clans hiding in the darkness.
Over a hundred clans contend for hegemony!
There were only this small number of Golden Dan Innate Experts and most of the Golden Dan Innate Experts were taken by the Rising Sun Trading Company and Tianfeng Clan, the superpowers! It was already considered good if the so-called great clans like Danyang City’s Fang Clan and Nanshan City’s Wang Clan and Murong Clan were able to have one or two Martial Saints. For these clans, having a Golden Dan Innate Expert was something impossible!
Which means that—
A Golden Dan Innate Martial Saint totally has the ability to assassinate a patriarch of a great clan and leave confidently and easily! Even the Great Elder, the best among experts ranked below the Martial Immortals, treated Teng Qingshan as his equal…After the auction, the great clans rapidly obtained Teng Qingshan’s information! Teng Qingshan was determined as—the person who cannot be provoked!
The general hastily said with respect.
On the spacious field in front of Tian Village, thousands of soldiers and about a thousand Tian Villagers were dumbfounded when they heard “Mister Teng.”
Teng Qingshan sat on the Scarlet Wind War Hou.
“Mister Teng, I didn’t know it was Mister…” While the general was still speaking, his son beside him leaped off the War Hou. The general’s son poked the general softly as he whispered, “Father, get off the War Hou quickly.”
The general was completely stupefied earlier. Upon hearing his son’s words, he realized and immediately dismounted the War Hou.
“Mister Teng—” The general just began to speak.
“I already said that you all must leave within fifteen minutes, or else all the soldiers will be sold as slaves. Half of the time has already passed….” Teng Qingshan said calmly.
The general immediately regained full awareness. He turned and roared, “Retreat! Quickly retreat!”
Although the other confused soldiers didn’t know why or who the young man mounted on the Scarlet Wind War Hou was, they guessed that the young man must be a powerful expert.
“Giddyup!” “Giddyup!” Everyone fled rapidly, and for a moment, the galloping of over a thousand Hunchbacked Beast quaked the earth.
“You… and… you. You two stay.” Teng Qingshan pointed at two people, the general and the centurion.
“Understood,” the general said with respect.
He didn’t dare to be disrespectful.
General? In some great clans, a troop of one thousand people would be considered a battalion. The commander of a battalion could be called “Vice General” and respectfully called “General” by the subordinates. Whether it was the Vice General, or the higher ranked Ivory General, both could be called “General” by the rank-and-file soldiers.
A commander of a battalion was nothing in front of a Golden Dan Innate Expert.
Even Wang Meng, Patriarch of Wang Clan, would have to respectfully call Teng Qingshan “Mister Teng” and Fu Dao “Mister Fu”!
One could say that the Golden Dan Innate Expert had a higher status than the patriarchs of some average clans. Of course, the Golden Dan Innate Experts would have to be slightly humble when facing Rising Sun Trading Company and Tianfeng Clan.
Unfortunately, he was just a commander of a battalion.
‘You bastard. Quickly kowtow and apologize to Mister Teng!” The general walked over and kicked the centurion, knocking the centurion to the ground and making him eat a mouthful of snow.
“Why are you still gawking!” The general kicked again in anger.
Simultaneously, the general bowed respectfully to Teng Qingshan and said, “Mister Teng, I, the little one, did not discipline my subordinate strictly enough, causing this fellow to offend Mister. I ask for Mister’s order on how to punish him!”
“Mister Teng, Mister Teng.”
The centurion finally regained his senses. He hastily knelt on the snowy ground and begged, “It’s me who’s offended Mister. Mister, please spare my life! Please spare my life!” At this moment, the centurion’s heart was filled with terror. He understood quite well that—in this chaotic world, in order to befriend some superpowered experts—those patriarchs were even willing to gift their own concubines to the expert; it was very common. The patriarchs could even gift their own woman away, not to mention a centurion.
“Begging for forgiveness?” Teng Qingshan flicked a glance at the centurion and replied, “Weren’t you acting quite powerful earlier, eh?”
The centurion was so afraid that he trembled slightly.
“You bastard.” The general was so angry that he kicked once more.
“Let me ask you two, why were the taxes collected so many times?” Teng Qingshan questioned with a frown.
With a helpless and respectful tone, the general answered, “Mister, there are now three great clans nearby Nanshan City. All three clans have armies and all three clans are engaging in battles all around the continent, so money is necessary. Therefore… all three clans are collecting taxes, which is why the villages have to pay three times!”
“I heard them say that it’s the fourth time.” Teng Qingshan continued his line of questioning.
“The clans control such a big region, but there are only a limited number of troops. Many troops collect taxes and sometimes… problems like repeating a collection of tax happens,” The general answered as he bowed.
When Teng Qingshan heard this, he sighed inwardly.
In this chaotic world, the ones who suffered were always the people in the lowest rung of society.
The eight Supreme Sects stood high above the masses in the Land of the Nine Prefectures. Although the Land of the Nine Prefectures was in disarray, it is not very chaotic. However, Duanmu Continent was different. Its population was much less than that of the Land of the Nine Prefectures. Yet over a hundred clans contended for hegemony, so it was easy to imagine the poor and tough lives of the people in the lowest rung of society.
“Do according to what I said earlier. I don’t want to see any troops disturbing the calm of the villages around Godly Axe Mountain,” said Teng Qingshan.
“Yes.” The general bowed. He then lifted his head anxiously and said, “Sir, even if we don’t come, the troops from the other two clans will.”
“I will make arrangements.” Teng Qingshan waved his hands and said, “Leave.”
The general and the centurion bowed and kowtowed. They then speedily mounted the War Hous, and lashing their whips, the two War Hous galloped rapidly, rushing away.
The Tian Villagers who were originally in fear and shock watched this scene with their eyes wide and mouth agape. The over one thousand soldiers actually fled in fright. The superior general and the arrogant centurion were so scared in front of this mysterious young man that they actually trembled.
“Ah Shou, get on the War Hou,” Teng Qingshan ordered.
Teng Shou immediately leaped onto the Scarlet Wind War Hou.
“Two Lords!” Jubilation shone on the face of the old chief who was among the group of Tian Villagers as he said in a respectful and nervous tone, “Lords, I, a decrepit geezer, didn’t know the identities of the two Lords. Please don’t take offense to it. Lords, how about resting in my village for a while?”
The old chief of Tian Village clearly understood as he thought to himself, ‘Listening to their conversation earlier, even the three superior and great clans didn’t dare to offend the spear-wielding young man. If… if Tian Village can affiliate with him… it would be for the best if he could lay his eyes on a girl in my village. If he can be the son-in-law of Tian Village, who would have the audacity to collect taxes from Tian Village? Who would dare to offend Tian Village?
‘By that time, the men of Tian Village will be able to live a good life.
‘In the future, the ladies of the other villages will desire to marry into Tian Village. If this really happens someday, I will be able to face the ancestors of Tian Clan when I die.’
The old man of Tian Village clearly knew how terrifying the chaotic world is, therefore he quite desired to establish a better relationship with the spear-wielding young man.
“No need,” Teng Qingshan answered as he waved his hand.
“Ah Shou, thank you,” The pure and simple village girl shouted promptly.
Teng Shou mounted on the War Hou and smiled simplemindedly at the village girl as he answered, “N-no n-n-need to, to thank m-m-me.” He stammered as he replied.
“Let’s go!” Teng Qingshan ordered.
The two War Hous immediately dashed away, disappearing into the distance.
When Teng Qingshan and Teng Shou left, loud noise immediately sounded in the spacious field in front of Tian Village. Previously, everyone was extremely nervous. Now the members of Tian Village, especially the people who almost lost the ladies in their family, were extremely excited. Children hugged their mothers and young men held their wives tightly. As for the elderly men and women, they hugged their daughters.
Agitated cries were heard continually. Many people looked at the direction in which Teng Qingshan and Teng Shou left with grateful expressions.
“Ah Xiu, come here. Come here,” The old chief of Tian Village said hastily.
Ah Xiu gripped her patched jacket nervously as she walked over with her head down.
“Chief, Ah Xiu has caused trouble.” Ah Xiu’s father also appeared very nervous; he was worried that the chief might express his anger.
“It’s alright. The child did not cause any trouble.” The old chief of Tian Village, who scolded Ah Xiu earlier, now stroked Ah Xiu’s head while beaming with joy. He continued saying, “Ah Xiu, where did the two people come from? How did you know them?”
Ah Xiu answered nervously, “I-I met Brother Ah Shou in the forest adjacent to field when I was done with the farmwork.”
“Ah Shou?” The old chief of Tian Village immediately understood that this Ah Shou was the teenager who grabbed the centurion at lightning speed.
“What about the young man?” the old chief of Tian Village asked again.
“He is Ah Shou’s instructor.” Ah Xiu pondered and continued, “Ah Shou’s instructor is very powerful!”
“In the forest next to the field? Godly Axe Mountain?” Hearing all the answers, the old chief had a rough idea of Teng Qingshan’s location.
The old chief of Tian Village said affably, “Ah Xiu, in the future, go to the forest and meet that Ah Shou often.” Ah Xiu was a simple and pure girl. Due to fear, she was completely stupefied today. The girls in the villages were captured and thousands of soldiers approached. She was completely scared and witless. Even now, she still felt bewildered.
The old chief berated her earlier, but was now talking to her in such an affable tone This made Ah Xiu even more confused.
“Do you remember what I said?” The old chief of Tian Village asked and said, “Tian Village owes that Ah Shou a favor, so you must go and see him often.”
“Oh, oh.” Ah Xiu hastily nodded.
At this moment, Ah Xiu only knew one thing. Even if the old chief didn’t say anything, she would still go. Besides, the old chief did arrange for her to go.
Ah Xiu, gradually coming to her senses, began to realize what the old chief meant as she thought, “Perhaps the old chief wants…” Ah Xiu bit her lips as the image of the silly and cute “Ah Shou” appeared in her mind.
The old chief of Tian Village looked in the direction Teng Qingshan and Teng Shou had left and sighed inwardly, “In the end, they are still the superior figures! I wonder when Tian Village will give birth to a powerful figure.”