The Song of Swords Chapter 30

Guo Huo reached for the axe strapped to his back and held it
out toward his right side.

He then jumped down and by using his flames, flew down to
the battle, landing between Zhao Yue and the berserk Jia Yuan.

He then let his domineering aura float over the village
center, encompassing all those participating in the fight.

Whether it was Jia Yuan or the Zhao family, or even the Zhao
family patriarch, nobody was able to move under the domineering force.

Guo Huo looked at Jia Yuan and felt a pang of guilt. After
all, it was because of his choice to thoroughly test Jia Yuan that had driven
the child to such a state.

He tapped his necklace and took out a pill. He then used
solidified part of his aura and used it to open Jia Yuan’s mouth and placed the
pill in the child’s mouth. He then lightly hit the underside of Jia Yuan’s jaw,
making him swallow.

A few seconds after consuming the pill, Jia Yuan’s eyes
slowly became less bloodshot, and his thoughts and demeanor returned to normal.

After a few more seconds, Jia Yuan started as if waking from
a dream.

Hmm? What was I doing?
Why does my left shoulder hurt so much?

He then saw Guo Huo standing in front of him. He blinked, then
looked around the village center and saw the destruction and dead bodies
surrounding him. He looked up at Guo Huo and gazed at the old man with a look
of distrust.

“You promised you’d help with the Zhao family head.”

“No, I promised to deal with him if you dealt with everyone
else first.”

Jia Yuan shut his mouth, but still stared at Guo Huo with a
look of distrust.

Guo Huo gave Jia Yuan a wry smile with a bit of guilt in his
eyes. “Alright, alright. I made a mistake okay? I just wanted to test your
fighting prowess. Was that your first time getting injured in a fight?”

Jia Yuan nodded.

“Whoo… that explains a bit. However, it appears that you don’t
have much self- control, or you wouldn’t have gone berserk. That will be
something we have to fix in the future.”

While the two were chatting, the members of the Zhao family
were held in place by Guo Huo’s aura. They stared at Guo Huo with eyes of fear.
How strong was this person, to be render them unable to move with just his
aura?

It also seemed that this old man who had jumped down was
well acquainted with Jia Yuan. It was fortunate that the Zhao family couldn’t
move at all, or they would have been shaking with fear. In fact, Zhao Hai, the
patriarch’s son, had taken the liberty to wet his pants.

Seeing this scene, the surrounding villagers began to sound
some voices of hope.

For the last few months, they had been continually suppressed
and mistreated by the Zhao family. Seeing that there was a mighty power dealing
with the Zhao family, it felt to the villagers as if justice was being dealt.

“Wow, that man is so strong!”

“I wonder who he is! That kind of strength should be rare
even within the entire Kingdom!”

“Why does he know Jia Yuan? Is it because of that child that
this man came here?”

“Screw that, didn’t you see Jia Yuan fight earlier? He’s
only 11 but he was able to decimate most of the Zhao family himself!”

Previously, the villagers had all been either too enthralled
or frightened by the fighting going on to make any exclamations. But now, since
none of the fighters were able to move, they had a sudden lull. As such, phrases
such as these began to flood the houses surrounding the village center.

Having finished speaking to Jia Yuan, Guo Huo turned back to
Zhao Yue.

“Your family has continually broken the laws of the Fire
Kingdom. As such, today, I deliver justice.”

With that said, he waved his arm. Instantly, every remaining
Zhao family felt a burst of flame coming from their abdomen. Seconds later,
they all died as their insides quickly burned from the deadly fires.

Guo Huo turned back to Jia Yuan. “Child, I am sorry for
testing your limits today. However, it is important that you get a true taste
of battle when you are young. Otherwise, you will be too brazen when you fight,
like when you tried to fight the bandits at the neighboring village. If you
keep fighting like that, you will die young.”

Jia Yuan was still full of bitterness, but even he had to
admit that the old man’s words were true.

“Fine, fine. I forgive you, but only because you dealt with
the Zhao family.”

“I have another request.”

“What is it, old man?”

“I freed you from your master for the purpose of you
becoming my disciple. I’ve spent the last few days observing you, and I’ve come
to the conclusion that you possess a very high level Song and have some
fighting experience. However, you lack an education and as such you lack
self-control and deductive reasoning.”

“If you wish to become a truly strong individual, you will
have to learn these things. I am one of the strongest people in the Fire
Kingdom, and I am an experienced fighter. Furthermore, I have friends who are
extremely adept at teaching the things you do not have.”

“So, what do you say?”

Jia Yuan looked at the old man. Everything Guo Huo had just
said seemed very sincere, which suggested that he really wanted to help Jia
Yuan. Seeing this sincerity, the bitterness in Jia Yuan’s heart began to fade
away. After considering Guo Huo’s proposal for a bit longer, Jia Yuan
responded.

“Fine, but I have a condition. You have to explain to me why you wish to have me as a disciple.”

"Hmph. Very well, you have the right to know..."

"Long ago, I was like you, at the bottom side of the Absorption realm. I dreamt of power. I dreamt of being so strong, that I would be worshiped by the massive as a god. In this, for the most part, I succeeded..."

"But the stronger I became, the weaker I realized I was. Over time, I eventually realized just how vast the world is... I am no longer young, and I will be unable to conquer this vast world. But someone like you, who has such a high level Song, and is like a blank sheet of paper, yet to be hit by the cruelties of the world, may be able to do so."

"So that is my answer. I wish for you to be my disciple, because I wish to leave behind a legacy. If I cannot achieve the peak of martial cultivation myself, I would at least like to be remembered as the teacher of one who did."

With that clarified, Jia Yuan had no reason Guo Huo’s offer. Jia Yuan was a rather foolish kid, but when it came to moments like these, he was still sincere and knew what to do. He abruptly dropped to his knees and kowtowed to Guo
Huo three times. He then stood up, cupped his hands toward Guo Huo, and said, “Teacher.”

Guo Huo was rather surprised that Jia Yuan had the mindset
to kowtow and pay respects to him. After all, it was in complete contrast with Jia Yuan’s normal behavior.

He felt rather gratified, and smiled at Jia Yuan like a father would smile at their son.

At this time, the village elder carefully made his way over
to Guo Huo and Jia Yuan, who were standing at the center of the village.

After stepping over the corpses of the Zhao family, he stood
in front of Guo Huo and Jia Yuan.

The village elder said to the both of them, “Thank you for
ridding the village of the Zhao family. The last few months, they have truly
been too audacious. Last month, we were even unable to pay the Kingdom’s taxes
and were punished with an even higher tax rate this month.”

“Now, we can finally all live in peace again. For that, I
thank the two of you.”

Guo Huo quickly retracted his domineering and adopted the
pose of a respectable nobleman.

“No problem at all, village elder. It was Jia Yuan here who
notified me of the wrongdoings of the Zhao family. I was simply acting for the
good of the Fire Kingdom. We cannot have such lawbreaking families in the
Kingdom if we want to stay as strong as the other Kingdoms.”

“As for the possessions of the Zhao family, I would like to
return them to the village, as you were probably the rightful owners of them in
the first place.”

Jia Yuan glanced at Guo Huo with appreciation in his
eyes.

The village elder bowed towards Guo Huo. Acquiring the
possessions of the Zhao family had been his true goal all along, which was why
he had mentioned the higher tax rate issued by the Fire Kingdom.

And of course, Guo Huo saw through the ruse instantly. But
what was a few thousand small fire shards to a man like Guo Huo?

He knew that Jia Yuan very much liked Fire Hill Village, so
he felt that it would be a good show of faith to help the villagers out. After
all, he still felt a little guilty about forcing Jia Yuan to such a state
earlier.

After seeing Guo Huo's sincere gesture, Jia Yuan ran over to the village elder.

“Hey, elder? Guess what? Guo Huo here set me free! I’m a
free man now, how about that? I’m even going to be his disciple!”

“Oh, really? Congratulations, Jia Yuan!”

At this time, Jia Yuan’s old master appeared at the village
center. He had been sitting in his shack, worrying about Jia Yuan.

He could hear the noises of battle, the violent clangs of
metal and loud ominous screams that signified many gruesome deaths.

But all the while, he didn’t come out of the shack. During the last few years, he had cared for the two boys he purchased, but he had distanced himself from
them. After all, they were just slaves that he had been raising to sell to the
Army.

But every time he saw them sparring, every time he saw them
doing chores together, every time they ate congee together…he felt a great pain
inside his heart.

After he had heard that the noises of fighting had stopped,
Jia Yuan’s old master stood up in the shack, and looked in the direction of the
village center with a wistful face.

He had slowly walked his way over to the village center he
had arrived just now. He slowly walked up to Guo Huo and Jia Yuan. Upon
reaching them, he gazed at Jia Yuan with a gaze that was half guilty, half
pleading.

“Jia Yuan, it’s time for you to go and experience the world.
However, as someone who had lived with you for the last few years, I would like
to ask you for a favor. Of course, you have no obligation to me, as our
relationship was that of master and slave… But I would still like to ask this
of you.”

“A long while ago, long before I bought you and Dou Di, I
was a nobleman of the Fire Kingdom. I had two sons who were highly adept at
Martial Cultivation. Although I am not a cultivator myself, I hired the best
teachers I could afford for them, I bought the best pills I could afford for
them. I spared nothing for my two sons.”

“But alas, about 20 years ago, they went to the front lines
as captains of the Burning Legion in the war against the Water Kingdom. Neither
of them made it back, as both of them were killed by a Water Kingdom General.”

“For this man, Guo Huo, to want you as his disciple, I
imagine that in the future you will become extremely powerful, more so than my
two sons. If possible, could you at that point take revenge for my two sons?”

Jia Yuan was heartbroken by this story. After all, he had
never known his parents, and the only one he truly viewed as family, his
brother, was still alive. However his feelings soon turned to an understanding
of why his master had been so listless as long as Jia Yuan had known him. The
old master didn’t do much at all besides cooking congee every day, only telling
Jia Yuan and Dou Di to do their chores. In fact, the only time he ever left the
vicinity of the shack was to buy rice from the village market.

Just how hard does one have to be hit with grief for them to
fall so heavily from nobility to a point where they could only afford congee
for sustenance?

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