The Nine Cauldrons

Book 3 Chapter 54 Guan Lu

During Teng Qingshan’s childhood, the Teng Jia Village and the Li Jia Village had once fought over water, and had sent out three of their strongest men to compete.

At that time, Li Jia Village’s ‘Li Jinfu’ had shocked the clansmen of Teng Jia Village when he used a Wolf Fang Mace that weighed 120 Jin. Teng Qingshan clearly remembered that violent man to this day.

“Lieutenant Teng, you… you know me?”Li Jinfu was somewhat amazed. Currently, Teng Qingshan’s fame within the Black Armored Army was extremely high. Moreover, now that Li Jinfu had spent all these years in the Black Armored Army, and had married a wife who’d given birth to his son and daughter, he would go home every two to three years to visit his relatives.

Of course he would know the genius of the neighbouring village, “Teng Qingshan”.

However, Li Jinfu didn’t know whether the opposite party knew of his existence. Li Jinfu had left his home when he was 18 years old, which was almost 13 to 14 years ago. Right now, Teng Qingshan was only 17 years old. In other words, when Li Jinfu had entered the Black Armored Army, Teng Qingshan was only about four years old.

How would a four year old child still remember him? Moreover… he even recognized him!

“Li Jinfu! In the past, your Li Jia Village and my Teng Jia Village fought over water, and at that time, you defeated my uncle. I still remember the event quite clearly.” Teng Qingshan said with a smile, “I never  would’ve thought that after all these years, we would be fated to meet each other once more.”

“Lieutenant Teng, you still remember after so many years. Your memory is astonishing.” Li Jinfu smiled.

Several years had passed by, and Li Jinfu was no longer a man filled with an animal’s wildness; instead, he’d gradually transformed into a calm individual.

“Haha ……Qingshan, you and Jinfu are fellow villagers!” Ji Hong said with a smile, “Jinfu is the sergeant of my personal guards. His Spear Art is also quite good, and his strength can compare to some normal centurions. Alright, let’s head inside first. You two can talk to each other later!”

A group of people busily walked toward the hall.

Teng Qingshan learned just now that Li Jinfu was a sergeant among Ji Hong’s personal guard.

A division had 1500 men organized into 15 hundred-man teams. Among the 15 one hundred-man teams, the most elite one hundred-man team was known as the general’s personal guard. This was the commander’s own team of personal escorts. Of course they were the elite! A sergeant in the personal guard was much stronger than a sergeant in a standard hundred-man team.

Inside the spacious hall, there were more than 80 people assembled. Commander Ji Hong sat on the seat of honor, the highest position. To his left and right sat commander Guan Lu and Teng Qingshan, respectively.

In this hall, there were centurions, sergeants of the personal guard, and some core disciples with high status who sat beside Ji Hong, Guan Lu, and Teng Qingshan. Other than these eighty people, the rest stood against or near the wall.

“Li Jinfu? Haha, I am Teng Qinghu from Teng Jia Village.” Teng Qinghu merrily talked with Li Jinfu with a low voice. Seeing a fellow villager, Li Jinfu was obviously happy, and he kept discussing with Teng Qinghu in a low voice.


A low and deep cough brought silence to the entire hall instantaneously. Commander Ji Hong’s cold face swept over the large group of people before he coldly said, “As of right now, news that an adolescent Red Scaled Beast was born has been spreading throughout the world like wildfire. Furthermore, the adolescent Red Scaled Beast appeared in the Blazing Mountain, which isn’t far from Qingzhou. Right now, experts are being drawn to the Blazing Mountain, and martial arts masters from at least Yangzhou and Qingzhou will show up! Therefore……When the time comes and an expert appears, we disciples from the Gui Yuan Sect can’t act arrogantly and domineering. Of course, towards those who dare to annoy us, we definitely won’t show any mercy! Understood!?”

“Yes, My Lord!”

The people present replied loudly, full of discipline.

“Mm.”Ji Hong slightly nodded his head, and immediately fixed his gaze on Teng Qingshan and Guan Lu. Then a smile appeared on his face, “Qingshan, Guan Lu, the Sovereign has assigned us to obtain the Black Fire Spirit Fruit and the Black Fire Spirit Root, as well as the scales of the Red Scaled Beast. What do you think? Speak your thoughts, and let us hear them.”

Discussing methods and strategy was a highly important matter.

However, Ji Hong obviously recognized that Teng Qingshan was one of the leaders of this elite team. In fact, although Teng Qingshan was a lieutenant, his status normally couldn’t be compared to Ji Hong and Guan Lu, who were commanders. However, after Teng Qingshan had successfully killed Meng Tian, the entire Gui Yuan Sect began to hold him in high esteem.

An expert of the «Earthly Ranking» didn’t need to prove his strength.

“The scales of the Red Scaled Beast?” Puzzled, Teng Qingshan looked towards Ji Hong. “Commander, if that Red Scaled Beast has eaten the Black Fire Spirit Fruit, it isn’t very likely that we’ll be able to kill it.”

“Haha, Teng Qingshan. The Sovereign meant that we should kill the Red Scaled Beast if it hasn’t yet eaten the Black Fire Spirit Fruit and obtain its scales.”

“If it manages to snatch the Black Fire Spirit Fruit, then we will do everything in our power to find a way to snatch the black scales that it will discard during its transformation,” Ji Hong explained the details.

Teng Qingshan inwardly nodded.

“Martial Granduncle!” Guan Lu finally opened her mouth. Her voice was extremely cold, and the expression on her face didn’t change, “When will we set out?”

“No need to hurry.” Ji Hong replied with a smile, “According to the information, that adolescent Red Scaled Beast is still in its growth period. It has to wait until at least January before it can mature and reach a length of over twenty Zhang. The Black Fire Spirit Fruit will definitely grow after the adolescent Red Scaled Beast matures. This is the law of nature. Therefore, we have until at least January.”

The nature of the world was indeed full of mysteries.

When the Red Scaled Beast was born, its whole body was black. Day after day, it grew with an amazing speed and reached a frightening mass after several months. Once it ate the ‘Black Fire Spirit Fruit’, its entire body would turn from black to red. Afterwards, it would become a dreadful monster that even innate masters would fear.

The Black Fire Spirit Fruit was also black during its growth and would turn red upon reaching maturity.

It was said that the Red Scaled Beast and the Black Fire Spirit Fruit were two entities that would always be born in unison.

“Martial Granduncle.” Guan Lu opened her mouth and said, “I think we should set out before January. Regardless of whether or not that Red Scaled Beast ate the Black Fire Spirit Fruit, our mission is to obtain its black scales. Therefore, I think it would be ideal if we go earlier and kill the adolescent Red Scaled Beast during its maturation stage! Although the scales will probably be a bit worse compared to the scales of a fully matured Red Scaled Beast, at least we will be able to guarantee that the adolescent Red Scaled Beast will be unable to eat the Black Fire Spirit Fruit! Moreover, once that beast grows over twenty Zhang long, it will be very tough to kill!”

Ji Hong was startled.

Suddenly, he burst out laughing: “Guan Lu, what you said is right! Adolescents truly have sharper minds. If we kill the adolescent Red Scaled Beast now, we’ll indeed have more benefits with no harm!”

Slightly surprised, Teng Qingshan looked at Guan Lu, who returned his gaze. Staring for a moment, she coldly asked Teng Qingshan, “Lieutenant Teng, what do you think?”

“I approve of the commander’s method,” Teng Qingshan replied.

Ji Hong immediately announced loudly, “Everyone present, listen closely. We will rush to Blazing Mountain early tomorrow morning! Today, everybody should rest well. The soldiers of the Black Armored Army will not need to put on their heavy armor atop Blazing Mountain, nor will they need to ride a horse. Therefore, you don’t need to bring a horse or heavy armor; wearing leather armor will be enough.”

“Yes, My Lord.” Everyone present received the order.

“You can leave now.” At Ji Hong’s command, the group of people immediately walked out of the hall. The mansion’s dedicated servants led the people to their respective residences.

In the hall, only Teng Qingshan, Ji Hong, and Guan Lu remained.

“Guan Lu!” Ji Hong revealed a smiling face and patted Teng Qingshan’s shoulder next to him, “This time, Teng Qingshan really earned a lot of face for our Gui Yuan Sect! He killed an expert who was ranked on the «Earthly Ranking»! Haha ……Now, who in the world will dare to say that our Gui Yuan Sect’s younger generation is incompetent? Guan Lu, you should learn from Qingshan.”

Guan Lu looked towards Teng Qingshan and suddenly stood up, “Lieutenant Teng, I’ve heard that your Spear Art is powerful. I would like to exchange notes!”

Teng Qingshan also stood up and looked at Ji Hong with a forced smile.

Smiling, Ji Hong told him, “Qingshan, Guan Lu is one of several experts from the younger generation of our Gui Yuan Sect. She’s cultivating the Earth Class secret technique ‘Profound Ice Sword Art’, and her strength exceeds that of even Zhuge Yun and Yue Song. How about you compare notes with her? I also want to take a look at your Spear Art.”

Being able to become a commander, how could Guan Lu’s strength be weak?

“Is Commander Guan 30 years old already?” Teng Qingshan unexpectedly asked.

Asking a woman’s age was somewhat disrespectful, and Guan Lu slightly frowned. However Ji Hong replied, “She’s not 30 yet!”

“Lord Commander, it’d be better for Commander Guan and I to temporarily pause the matter of comparing notes. If we cross swords and cause one of us to be injured, it would be detrimental to tomorrow’s hunt. Moreover, we will soon be competing for the Black Fire Spirit Fruit! It would be better to conserve our strength.” Teng Qingshan said. Guan Lu wasn’t 30 years old yet, but her name wasn’t on the «Rising Phoenix Ranking».

If she hadn’t even managed to be listed on the «Rising Phoenix Ranking», Teng Qingshan wasn’t interested in comparing notes.

Unless an individual had reached Teng Qingshan’s level, even if he or she could use 50,000 to 60,000 Jin of strength like Zhuge Yun or Yue Song, it wasn’t worth mentioning to him. Teng Qingshan was only interested in those who were at least at Meng Tian’s level.

Teng Qingshan had not yet forgotten the fierceness of the Blood Moon Saber.

Looking at Meng Tian’s Saber Art, there weren’t many differences when compared to Teng Qingshan’s own Spear Art. He’d depended on his Reincarnation Spear’s superior range to injure Meng Tian, and was only able to kill him because of his terrifying physical strength!

“Lieutenant Teng!” Guan Lu’s expression turned cold.

“Commander Guan, we will leave early tomorrow morning. You should rest.” Teng Qingshan turned his head to look at Ji Hong.

Ji Hong understood Teng Qingshan’s meaning and stood before saying with a smile, “Guan Lu, what Qingshan said is right. We will be busy tomorrow, and from this competition, an injury might be unavoidable. Alright, right now, there’s nothing left to discuss. You should all go rest for the night.”

Guan Lu coldly looked at Teng Qingshan and said, “Once the business with the Black Fire Spirit Fruit is finished, I will thoroughly compare notes with Lieutenant Teng, and see for myself what good techniques you have!” After finishing her sentence, Guan Lu walked towards the door with big steps.

Smiling, Ji Hong took a glance at the departing Guan Lu and returned his gaze to Teng Qingshan. “Qingshan, rejecting Guan Lu wasn’t a good idea. Could it be that when you saw that she wasn’t on the Rising Phoenix Ranking, you lost interest in competing with her?” The old Ji Hong saw through Teng Qingshan’s thinking instantly.

Teng Qingshan looked at Ji Hong and replied with a smile, “Lord Commander, Commander Guan wouldn’t secretly ambush me because of this, right.”

“That won’t happen.” Ji Hong shook his head, and immediately asked out of curiosity, “Qingshan, I heard that you possess the Blood Moon Saber. Can you show it to me?”

“Of course.” Teng Qingshan noded.

Ji Hong continued. “Then lead me to your place.” Ji Hong appeared impatient.

“Now?” Teng Qingshan was somewhat stunned, but he still led Ji Hong to his own residence in  order to show the old commander the renowned hundred year-old Blood Moon Saber.


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