Translator: SaltyTank Editor: SaltyTank
Soran quietly waited for the funeral to end before walking toward Vivian. He lightly nodded at the young priestess and said, “Thank you for taking care of her.
“I’m here to pick her up.”
Vivian’s face lit up when she saw Soran. She held Soran’s finger with her tiny hand and gladly said, “Brother! You’re finally back!”
Meanwhile, the young priestess could not hide the sorrow on her face, as she was still mourning for the shrine guard who lost his life.
She glanced at Soran while knitting her eyebrows. Priests had high Wisdom, which granted them strong perception, and the priestess could feel the change within Soran instinctively. Previously, she felt that Soran was simply a thug with extraordinary abilities, but now he was a warrior who had fought countless battles; the calm yet deadly atmosphere he radiated was on par with that of the shrine guards. The shrine guards were either retired soldiers or people who had fought many battles, but Soran was nothing of the sort. Just what did Soran experience in these past two days for him to undergo such a change? She could not understand.
Soran slightly bowed his head toward Bishop Phil, who was across the room, and was about to leave the shrine with Vivian when the priestess stopped them in their tracks.
“Wait! Vivian has exceptional talent!” Annalynne exclaimed.
“She has the potential to become a great priestess. Perhaps you should let her stay and train here? It would be great for her in the future if she could become a priestess. It’d at least be better than...”
The priestess did not finish her sentence, but the implied meaning was clearly delivered. High-ranked priests had high social status and power, which was obviously better than living aimlessly on the streets as a thug in some third-rate gang. What the priestess did not know was that Soran had mercilessly slain various gang members in the slums since he woke up. Vivian would not reveal such things, thus Annalynne still regarded Soran as a boy who was abused by gang leaders.
No matter how skillful a thief was, it was impossible for him to reach the top and gain power; that was what the priestess thought.
Surprisingly, the first to react was not Soran, but Vivian. Puffing her cheeks with a displeased expression, she glared at Annalynne and rejected the priestess’ suggestion.
“I don’t want to become a priestess! Staying by brother’s side is the best!”
The young child could not tolerate people who looked down on her beloved brother. He was a thief, so what? If not for his skills and courage, Vivian would have died in the slums already. People who were living safely in a shrine had no idea how difficult it was for a twelve-year-old to make a living in the slums, not only for himself but also his three-year-old sister.
Soran once worked as a laborer at the docks, but the money he earned was not enough to feed the both of them no matter how hard he worked. Getting bruises on his back and body aches from carrying heavy cargo repeatedly did not help either. From Vivian’s perspective, her brother was her entire world. She simply could not allow others to speak badly of Soran, even if the person was someone she was close to.
The young priestess was stunned as Vivian glared at her with a murderous look; this was Annalynne’s first time seeing Vivian lose her temper. She wanted to apologize, but the stubbornness within her still thought that Soran could not bring a bright future to his sister.
A mere thief in the slums; even if he somehow managed to become a gang leader, life would still be filthy and unstable. Vivian deserved a better life!
Annalynne still believed that her suggestion was for the best for Vivian, thus she put up a strong front while staring at Soran, as if trying to let him know this was the better option.
Yet she was disappointed by his reaction, as Soran simply patted Vivian’s head like an owner petting his little kitten. He then lifted the little girl up and gave her a piggyback ride, with Vivian snuggling against the back of his head merrily.
Vivian was easily satisfied by the simple things in life. If no one intruded upon her peaceful day, she could happily it busily doing chores like cleaning and tidying the rooms and doing the laundry. Even if the clothes were still slightly dirty after washing, as Vivian lacked the strength to thoroughly clean them, Soran did not seem to mind. In other words, becoming a priestess wasn’t necessary; their current life suited her just fine.
Soran steadied Vivian with his hand on her waist as she sat on his shoulders, her malnutritioned and light body swaying side to side.
“Vivian will not become a priestess.”
A priestess of the God of Dawnlight? There was no way in hell Soran would let that happen. The chaotic years were about to begin, and the God of Dawnlight was one of the first deities to lose their divinity.
Priests would lose their ability to cast divine spells when that happened. Those with over 20 Wisdom could gain new understanding of divine spells on their own, granting them the ability to use their once-lost powers if they transferred their faith from their respective gods to the Origins of Order, a new faith created based on polytheism. Otherwise, priests would become ordinary people who simply knew the combat tactics of spellcasters.
Soran planned to leave the city to stay away from the chaos which began the moment the skinning incidents occurred. How could he let Vivian become a priestess of a soon-to-fall god?
Soran bowed his head at the young priestess to show show his gratitude and left the shrine with Vivian on his shoulders. Despite her ignorant words, she made the suggestion out of good will nonetheless. For Soran, however, the best course of action right now was to strengthen himself in a safe place.
The young priestess could only look at the backs of the siblings as they left the shrine. She wanted to say something to the two, but nothing came out of her mouth in the end as signs of disappointment and envy showed on her face.
The two siblings depended on one another, and perhaps that was for the best for Vivian; staying by her brother’s side was enough for her to endure all sorts of hardships.
Annalynne recalled the radiant smile on Vivian’s face and looked back at the silent and desolate shrine while muttering, “Please take good care of her.”
She sighed as she headed toward the basilica. The skinning incidents were getting out of hand, and three of the shrines in Amber City were prepared to go on a joint mission to eradicate the evildoers. A large-scale battle was bound to occur, and leaving Vivian with Soran was probably for the best as Annalynne had to take part in the battle as well.
Leaving Amber City and travelling to other places was easier said than done. Let alone getting lost and stranded in the wilderness, the chances of dying in accidents were not low. Travelling alone without any preparations only meant that the person was looking for death—that was the only likely outcome.
Thus, Soran had plenty of preparations to make before the two could leave the city. He first had to find a team of merchants and seek permission to travel together by paying them money. He also had to refamiliarize himself with the battle skills in his memory and try to train his swordsmanship as quickly as possible. From there, he could then proceed to learn the skill Sword Form—Heavy Hack. He also needed to stock up on food, potions, medicine, camping tools, and a saddle for Vivian.
Monsters were not the only dangers when travelling in the wild. Wild beasts, poisonous insects, thieves, and bandits also posed a great threat to travellers. If not for the skinning incidents, Soran would not wish to travel afar with Vivian, but he had no choice right now. According to his estimations, the skinning incidents would escalate into something more severe in less than half a month—the first Descendant of God, Lilian, the Witch of Terror, would appear.
The Dread Lord, who had strong divine powers and resided in the Abyss, had forseen his fall, which was why he left descendants in the world and gave them each a fraction of his divinity and power. A handful of demon lords had attempted the same before; they left their seeds of divinity within their descendants and planned to devour their descendants’ souls to regain power after they had fallen.
Some succeeded, but there were also those who failed.
Those who succeeded were reborn from the bodies of their descendants, regaining their divinity. The demon lords did not take over the bodies, but instead brutally destroyed their descendants and created new bodies with their regained divinity. Those who failed, however, could only succumb and remain stuck in the Mortal Realm forever.
If Soran remembered correctly, the number of Descendants of God reached two digits, with each of them having significant powers. Furthermore, they were responsible for the first of the many turmoils to come to the world. The descendants of the Dread Lord fought one another, spreading fear across the world. The skinning incidents also played a major role in their fights, as it was an ancient evil summoning ritual.
As they fought, Lilian, the Witch of Terror, became one of the strongest descendants and was eventually killed by the High Lady of Silverymoon (the Lunar Goddess).
* * *
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*[advantage]: by having their erection in contact with her
*[ cent bills]: China has cents in bills called jiao
*[Guoshu]: Guo here means country and shu means technique
*[ 190 centimeters]: Over 6ft tall
*[Lake Cui]: Cui Hu, also means Green Lake
*[hundred dyuan bills]: 100yuan is their biggest bill
*[Daoist Fierce Tiger]: The author of this novel
*[Noodles]: made of wheat
*[Rice Noodles]: made of rice
*[Zhang Tian Tian]: Tian means sweet
*[Bajiquan]: Also known as Eight Extremities Fist, but Bajiquan sounds nicer to me
*[Long Taos]: side characters in Chinese operas who perform acrobatics and fight scenes
*[12.47 to 13.07]: don’t ask me about the tree sap
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