Chapter 123: Becoming Mercenaries
Walking out of the office, Xu Piao did exactly what he planned and first brought Hui Yue and his friends towards the courtyards to choose house which would be their home while they resided within the city.
The courtyard they chose was one of the smaller ones as Hui Yue’s party of four was considered a small group within the mercenary community.
Although Hui Yue was considered the leader of only a small group, this small group was the talk of the town and lots of excitement was shown when the other mercenaries saw how the Guild Leader was leading the cloaked men around, even showing them the different places within the Mercenary Guild’s headquarters.
The compound occupied by the Mercenary Guild was not the greatest, however many courtyards and palaces were squeezed into the small space. Stalls were placed on every nook and cranny, everyone was abusing the space and using it to its maximum potential.
Xu Piao quickly went past the residential area and guided the four guests towards the stables. “Having a demon beast as a mount is one of the most luxurious things that a mercenary can have because it is very hard to subdue the beasts living within the tunnels.”
“We provide shelter for demon beasts who have been captured, but only if the owner pays ten demon cores or demon coins a month.”
Walking past the stables, Hui Yue noticed that very few magical beasts were kept inside. Only a handful could be seen and none of them were as ferocious as the ones Hui Yue had encountered within the tunnels.
Obtaining a magical beast as a mount was not easy if one wished to tame the wild beast. The beast was only interested in following the one whom they had been bound to. If someone wished to buy a magical beast they had to be bred by kennels which specialized in the breeding of magical beasts.
Seeing just a few beasts within the stable Hui Yue understood that although there were not many, it was evident that within this city there were some mercenaries who were capable of subduing such beasts. It was obvious that the strength within this cave far exceeded the previous one.
Moving on with the introduction to the Mercenary Guild, Xu Piao brought Hui Yue to various stalls for him to see what they were selling.
Some sold weapons while other sold armours. Some sold inscriptions and others provisions. There were stalls which sold everything that a mercenary could need, even medicinal stalls focusing on selling various potions.
The potions here were no where near as effective as the medicinal pills from the surface, instead it was paste made from the herbs which other mercenaries sold to the stall. Although these potions were far inferior to medicinal pills they were still greatly helped the mercenaries who went without a Wood affinity healer in their group.
Looking at the armours and weapons, Hui Yue could not help but whistle in admiration as every weapon was made from black iron. Thinking it through, Hui Yue understood that the rich and heavy iron was abundant for those who lived within these caves.
Looking at the weapons, the prices were quite fair. They were definitely far cheaper than on the surface, and Hui Yue decided to visit the shops more often in the future. Even if he had to spend his beast cores it would definitely be worth it.
Seeing the keen interest in Hui Yue’s eyes, Xu Piao could not help but be secretly pleased. To be able to impress the white-haired boy gave the Guild Leader a childish satisfaction. He had been so stunned earlier with the information of the outside world that to be able to stun this young man with their world he could not help but feel slightly proud.
The tour continued and they slowly made it to the main hall. The main hall was one big room with various stalls inside. Each stall had their own sign and a few of them had long queues.
Looking at the signs, Hui Yue felt excitement as he saw how many choices there were. One of the stalls was named ‘Demon Beast Hunting’ and contained all the requests for demon beasts. ‘Herb Gathering’ was another stall, and behind the counter was a massive blackboard with various pictures, each picture representing someone looking for a specific herb.
‘Assassinations’ was yet another counter, however no one was queued up in front it. Another counter had a sign saying ‘Wanted Criminals’. The next said ‘Dragon Corps Missions’, and the queue in front of that stall was completely filled with mercenaries. The final one said ‘Miscellaneous Missions’.
Although the place was bustling, many of the mercenaries quieted down as they saw the Guild Leader entering the main hall with the four black cloaked men in tow.
The quietness caused Xu Piao to smile a little in embarrassment, but in spite of that, he still walked forward with steady steps and explained everything around them to Hui Yue.
As soon as they arrived within the main hall, Hui Yue stopped talking, however he was still paying attention to every movement which took place around him.
“Well then,” Xu Piao said with a sigh, “I will be going back now, enjoy yourselves in my guild; I am sure you will fit right in soon enough.”
Having said that, Xu Piao turned around and walked out from the main hall, leaving Hui Yue and his friends behind.
Looking around, Hui Yue was very interested in what he saw and he was unable to truly decide which of the missions to take first. Almost instantly the herb gathering and the magical beast hunt, or demon beast hunt as they called it here, was ruled out as Hui Yue felt he had done plenty of that.
Assassinations did not seem very interesting either as Hui Yue preferred only killing those who were in his way. In the end, only miscellaneous and Dragon Corps missions were left. Thinking about his dislike for the Dragon Corps, Hui Yue decided to go to the miscellaneous isle, each step was made under the extreme scrutiny of the rest of the room.
Seeing that Hui Yue made a decision Wang Ju Long, Sha Yun, and Deng Wu followed suit, all of them completely quiet as they felt how suffocating the atmosphere was.
Looking at the blackboard, Hui Yue saw all types of missions from finding the origins of old treasures to stalking wives who were assumed to be cheating on their husbands, or even entering the tunnels with young masters to help them temper their skills.
What drew Hui Yue’s attention was not those previous ones but instead a large poster which was centered on top of the blackboard.
Yearly Demon Dwelling Cave tournament to determine the rankings of mercenaries.
Looking at the poster, Hui Yue saw that first place won a thousand demon coins, second place won five hundred demon coins, and third place got two hundred and fifty demon coins.
Everyone was allowed to participate in the tournament, even half demon beasts. Hui Yue started counting to himself, thinking how great it would be if they were to win those coins.
Turning around and looking at Deng Wu, Wang Ju Long, and Sha Yun, neither of them were able to see his face, however all of them felt a chill run down their spine as they guessed what would come next.
“Training!” Was the only word which Hui Yue uttered before he turned around on his heels and moved straight for the courtyard they had been given.
The tournament would commence a few days from now and this tournament was nothing like what Hui Yue had seen before. It was not a one on one duel, instead it was mercenary teams against each other. Each team had to have at least five members and they would fight in either group battles or in five duels where the first to reach three wins could then proceed further into the competition.
One loss and the entire group would be out. This was not something which confused Hui Yue, what did trouble him was the fact that they were one person short and Hui Yue knew no one within this world who they could rely on.
Pondering the question for some time, Hui Yue left the courtyard once more and headed towards the office building where Xu Piao was waiting.
As soon as he arrived at the building everyone politely made way for him as he once more found himself outside the heavywood door, waiting to hear the voice from within calling out to him.
Just as Hui Yue expected, the voice quickly sounded out and Hui Yue entered the room, once more face to face with the young man.
Hui Yue could not help but chuckle as he saw the woman from before standing behind the attractive man, her face crimson red as she remembered how she, earlier that day, had run into a black cloaked man while wearing almost no clothes in her attempt to escape from Xie Lan.
Now she was once more standing behind the Guild Leader, but this time her clothes were all properly on her body.
“You returned faster than I had expected,” Xu Piao said laughing as he gestured for the girl to leave his side. The girl frowned slightly and an adorable pout was visible on her lips as she moved out of the room, glaring at the black cloaked figure.
“Please excuse her behavior,” The Guild Leader said with a sigh as his eyes stayed on the woman until the door had closed behind her with a loud thump.
“What can I help you with?” Xu Piao continued, as he moved his gaze back to Hui Yue. As soon as the young man had seen the woman exit the room he removed his cloak, revealing his features once again.
“We are planning to join the Mercenary Tournament,” Hui Yue said neither hurriedly nor slowly. His voice as firm as a mountain and his eyes shone with determination. “We are lacking one member for our group, I am sure you would be able to provide us with the final member.”
Hearing that, Xu Piao ruminated for some time, trying his best to come up with who would be the best suitable candidate.
If he had not been the Guild Master, he would personally have joined them, however that was not possible for him. Despite this there was one other person whom he could recommend and with a calm expression he pressed a memory stone, after which Xie Lan entered the room bowing slightly to the two people within.
Xie Lan was slightly taken aback to see the young man in front of her and the black cloak hanging over the chair.
“Xie Lan, you will be participating in the Mercenary Tournament. You will become one of the black cloaked mercenaries.”
Xu Piao had ulterior motives by making his most trusted cultivator join their group, as he would obviously gain quite a bit of information about the four cultivators who had arrived from another world. Leaving this task to Xie Lan was his best option.
Looking at Xie Lan, Hui Yue nodded slightly. How could he not know that Xu Piao was looking for information, but even so, the white-haired boy would gladly accept a King ranked expert to strengthen his group. Even if this meant that they would report to the Guild Leader each day.
Touching his storage stone, Hui Yue withdrew another black cloak which he handed over to Xie Lan who quickly pulled it over her clothes, making her seem exactly like Hui Yue moments before.
Xie Lan felt how her cultivation base automatically activated the inscriptions on the cloak, and for a few moments shiny silvery light flashed inside the office before they slowly died out, leaving the cloak looking completely black and ordinary. Her cultivation base had been nullified by the inscriptions and Xie Lan was now as mysterious as Hui Yue.
The white-haired boy sent a smile towards Xie Lan before he too wore his black cloak. With a bow to Xu Piao, Hui Yue turned around with Xie Lan following behind him. The two black cloaked cultivators left the office and returned to the courtyard where they would be living for some time to come.