With a move of his hand, everyone was transported on Shen’s deck. The pirates, Sylvia, the captain, Freia, everyone was there and the pirate’s ship together with Shen’s ship were anchored one beside the other.
Everyone looked with shock, fear, and admiration at Shen, not understanding what he just did.
How in the world have we got transported here?!
Every pirate was confused but too afraid to utter a sound.
Shen and his squirrel looked at everyone then he closed his eyes. The squirrel disappeared while his aura returned to normal. Right now, he was in his weakened state, being even weaker than a young child villager from this world. Everyone was able to tell but nobody dared to take him lightly, especially after showing such dominance.
A wolf in sheep’s clothing.
Everyone’s mind interconnected at that one time, thinking the same thing at the same time after feeling Shen’s weakened aura. It was like a pebble transformed into the mightiest mountain around and then turning back into a pebble in a matter of seconds. The change was simply too shocking.
“Now… I’m waiting for some kind of explanation from you all.” → Shen
Shen looked at everyone like a teacher would when the kids broke a glass and waited for some excuses.
Last time I felt like this, I was in my 1st year of middle school… but the teacher wasn’t a damn demon-god at that time! → Pirate’s Captain
The captain felt like crying, being scolded by someone younger than him and at the same time not being able to retaliate, that’s what one would call the ultimate humiliation.
“Young master Shen it’s an honor to meet you again. Even so, I must apologize for meeting in such a disastrous way.”
Tian stepped forward and said with a painful look in his eyes. From the last time they saw each other, Tian’s eyes were now filled with hate, indignation, and helplessness.
“… King of Jian Kingdom. Why are you in such a miserable state? Becoming a pirate and stealing from others. I’m really curious about your story. And also why that pirate holds technology from my world and why there are people from Eihwaz in his crew.” → Shen
Everyone was shocked seeing Shen so cooperative. They expected for him to at least punish them severely.
“How come you want to listen to them?” → Ashura
Ashura asked the question nobody dared to put, making every pirate look at him with huge eyes.
“While I was dead, I got information about how I’ll meet allies while sailing. I also heard that I’ll need to help them once I heard their story. Besides, I’m really curious about Tian’s story.” → Shen
Shen explained plainly.
The pirates, Tian included, looked at Shen with even bigger eyes.
What? Dead? When he was dead he got information? So when you die you get information? No, wait! When you’re dead, aren’t you… you know… not moving?! Like, not at all?! Is he a ghost now or are we crazy?! → Tian
“Sir Shen? You said you died? How come you’re… still here…?” → Tian
Tian asked the golden question.
“It’s because I was helped by everyone here, plus by the Queen of Elves and the Yggdrasil.” → Shen
Shen said with a neutral voice.
Everyone was even more confused.
“It seems that Sir Shen has an even better story to say than us.” → Tian
Tian said with a wry smile.
“Even so, I’ll tell mine after I hear yours. Let’s go inside, I’m hungry. Sylvia, really sorry for asking this out of you but, please bring me food and something sweet, I feel like I’ll faint from using too much mental energy.” → Shen
Shen entered inside the ship with Sylvia after him.
“Sure, no problem. Please ask whatever you need, dear~.” → Sylvia
Sylvia, for some reason, was extremely happy at the moment, humming and walking with light steps after Shen.
Nobody knew what to do. In the end, Sylvia turned around and said.
“Let’s forget about what just happened and go eat something, yes? It’s lunch time and I made some grilled fish with salad and dumplings for the ones who like them. Seeing how many there are, I’ll ask for everyone’s cooperation~.” → Sylvia
Sylvia made a beautiful smile, making everyone’s hearts jump.
Everyone viewed Sylvia like an angel, they all wished to have her make food for them. Then suddenly, Shen’s demon-like voice rang in their heads: “my wife”, making everyone push their dreams down in the back of their minds.
“Haah… I’m the most depressed. I actually had to fight such an angel. My deepest excuses Miss Sylvia! Please forgive this poor soul for not being able to see your divine light from the very beginning! Please punish this worthless human-being as you see fit!” → Pirate’s Captain
The captain fell on one knee in front of Sylvia and started gesticulating in an exaggerated way.
Sylvia looked at him surprised then she smiled and said.
“If so, then help me make lunch for everyone and also please answer Shen’s questions accordingly, alright?” → Sylvia
Sylvia asked with a bright smile
“YES! I’ll do whatever you wish!” → Pirate’s Captain
The captain was walking beside her with sparkling eyes.
Anyone who saw him would think the same thing. After everyone entered the cafeteria, Sylvia together with some pirates prepared more food while Shen, Tian, Ashura, and the two high elves sat down, talking about their reunion. More exactly, only Shen and Tian talked and the other 3 listened, curious about the conversation.
“I’m sorry for the cold welcoming just now, King Tian. My temper goes a little bit bad when I’m tired and hungry at the same time.” → Shen
Shen said while eating a dumpling and drinking sweet tea. He felt quite embarrassed after showing his ugly side.
Just a little? → Tian
Everyone froze at Shen’s words but Tian then said with a wry smile.
“Please don’t say that, sir Shen. It was my fault in the first place for assaulting your ship like that. I’ll ask for your forgiveness and also from Mister Ashura.” → Tian
Tian bowed his head, something that a king should never do but only in extreme cases.
“Same here, I never knew you’re a friend.” → Ashura
Ashura, nodded his head, his arms crossed at his chest.
“Please don’t be, king Tian. But may I ask why are you a pirate right now? Even your attire is one of a pirate.” → Shen
Shen finally asked what was on his mind from the very beginning.
“… Actually, I’m a former king… I lost everything.” → Shen
Tian said with a dark face and grave tone.
Shen kept quiet and the others stopped moving. They let Tian continue his story, hearing him more intently. Tian continued to narrate what happened.
“After sir Shen and sir Ryu left together with the freed slaves from inside the Jian Kingdom, Lupian and I started cleaning the ranks of corrupted nobles which tried to get their hands on more slaves. I was shocked at that time to discover more than 8 corrupted nobles in total, together with the ones found by sir Shen and Ryu. 4 of them were from higher ranks while 4 were from lower ranks. I thought there might be even more. There were more than 500 nobles in total, it was hard to believe that only 8 had their hands dirtied with slavery. When I wanted to send more spies inside the ranks, I got a letter through wind magic, saying that a group of 5 saints will visit my palace, 2 were from the empire while 3 were from the neighboring Sava Kingdom. The Sava kingdom is between my Jian Kingdom and Urius Kingdom. The bastards from Sava would always try to usurp my father, trying to get their hands on our rich lands and mines from the borders. This time they found a good way.” → Tian
Tian said with some hate, his voice turning hoarse.
“I had to postpone the idea of searching for corrupted nobles and prepare to welcome the Saints. After 4 days, they finally appeared. I invited them to a feast but they declined right there and then. They took out a scroll in which the imperial seal was placed. They showed me the seal and the imperial signature then started to read the content out loud… I was so stunned of what they said, I remember even now clearly what written there: [In the name of the Emperor of the entire Nostrung empire, Darius the IIIrd. Jian Tian of the Jian Kingdom is to be arrested for the following reasons:
-Bringing disrespect upon the 5 imperial guards.
-Bringing harm upon the 5 imperial guards.
-Bringing a calamity-class entity inside the Nostrung Continent.
-Accommodating a calamity-class entity inside the Jian Kingdom.
-Making favors with a calamity-class entity which is harmful to the Nostrung Empire.
-Letting the calamity-class entity leave without a fight, letting it bring more destruction upon the Nostrung Empire.
-Kidnapping and turning the victims into slaves.
So I presume I’m that ‘calamity-class entity’, right? Damn, I brought some huge disaster upon Tian this time… → Shen
Shen felt quite guilty for this. He had a good point of view about Jian Tian. He was a serious and honorable person. The idea of him making slave-trading was out of the question. Such a serious man would never do such a lowly thing.
“… After they said that, they walked before me with magic-restraining handcuffs and chains. They wanted to capture me there and then, without even letting me say what I had to say.” → Tian
Tian clenched his fists.
“At that time, I knew I had no other way but to flee, getting captured was equal to death and my death would bring no good to my people. The martial arts set you gave me was incredible and it was so flexible, I was able to combine it with my sword-play, bringing out even more power, because of your generous gift I was able to get out from there. It’s all thanks to you, sir Shen.” → Tian
Tian bowed his head again then looked with a grateful and solemn face at Shen.
“No… I screwed up big in coming to your kingdom, I should’ve asked only Ryu to go in my name. I’m sorry I didn’t know what disaster my presence would bring upon you.” → Shen
Shen said with some guilt. In truth, he knew pretty well, but at first, he thought that the king was some corrupted greedy idiot, only looking at riches and power. He never thought that that kind of king was actually the former one, leaving his only son, who was the complete opposite of him, take care of all the mistakes and sins made by his father.
“Please don’t be sorry sir Shen, the ones I can see at fault are my father and the corrupted nobles…Those idiots threw caution outside the window only for more gold…Excuse me, let me continue: I fought with all I got together with 6 other high nobles. We had only 3 saints while the rest were grandmasters. Because of the strong martial skills, I was able to fight on equal grounds with 2 other saints. General Garon together with Kavala, the old dragoon and the foul-mouthed dark fairy, tried to buy us more time while we retreated, they both were high Saints. In the end, Garon sacrificed himself so we could send letters and messages to our trustworthy people to evacuate and flee the falling kingdom… After 1 month, everyone was able to flee and we met at the place where sir Shen had his fight with the other Saints. We started planning our next move. I wanted to go and ask for a hidden refuge in the Jianhua Kingdom, in the North of the Jian Kingdom. There was my fiancée. Knowing a strong love we had for each other, she might be able to cover us for 2 months till we planned something out. Remaining hidden inside the Jian Kingdom, which was slowly integrated inside the Sava Kingdom, was not the best idea. In total, we were around 2000 people. The nobles with their armies and families gathered together inside the former Valley Shen resided. Even though it was completely flattered, the rocky terrain full of sand and huge caves was the best place in which we could’ve hid at that time. We tried to disperse and met up at the other end of the empire; 2000 people going together would be way too eye-catching. While walking, we entered a near village and changed our clothes in normal ones, looking exactly like the villagers around us. We traveled around and at every big city, there would be posters with our faces on the walls. We weren’t able to enter them but we were able to go through the villages. Even so, we still had to cover our faces numerous times. The guards were patrolling everywhere. Numerous times we were almost caught by the guards but we were able to flee just in time. I was at that time with Lupian and 4 other nobles and their families. We separated into groups of 10, everyone taking another route… On one night while camping outside I just finished my part of night-guarding. I made someone else to stay on guard and I entered my tent to sleep…” → Tian
Tian’s eyes darkened, even more, looking as if hell broke out after that night.
“I remember waking up at the screams of Lupian, shouting at me: ‘Your majesty! Wake up!’ My tent was suddenly cut, I hastily reacted and stabbed forward through the tent with my sword, it cut the neck of the attacker, killing him instantly. After that, I got out from the tent and saw who the assassin was… It was a woman, the wife of one of my subordinates, the wife of one of the nobles. I looked around and saw how Lupian was fighting the nobles, trying to defend my tent. He was a grandmaster but even so, fighting against 4 more nobles with their families that were almost as strong as him, was no easy feat for Lupian alone. In the end, he fell right after I got out from the tent, his heart got stabbed through by one of the nobles. I shouted at them and waited for an explanation but their eyes shone with insanity. They mumbled something about how they’ll be forgiven and will get their noble’s lives back if they brought my head to the Sava Kingdom’s representatives. Wishful thinking, those bastards would’ve killed them right after getting the location of the other fugitives that ran with me. I tried to talk reason with them, but even their children were completely insane. They were so frightened by the idea of being captured and tortured, their own spirits crumbled and insanity took over, making them stop judging…I had to kill everyone, I couldn’t let them say what they knew to the Sava bastards. After I buried everyone, I started thinking that maybe the other groups had the same internal conflicts or some even betrayed the group already, going straight for the guards and telling them everything. When we made the plan to go to the Northern parts of the kingdom, I was wise enough to not tell the others why I wanted to go there. Having the information about me asking for help from my fiancée kept a secret. I had to keep quiet and bring everyone to safety without them knowing… or at least that was the plan. What a huge mistake that was… Everyone was suspicious as to why I would bring them to the Northern parts of the kingdom. When I got there, I waited one week for everyone just as we planned. From the 2000 people, only 500 showed up. The rest fled to other places, tried to surrender but were instead killed by the guards, killed each-others by betraying or were killed by the demonic and wild beasts while traversing the forests. It was a complete tragedy. I heard that even one of my most trusted subordinates, Kavala, left toward the sea-side, leaving me on my own. He wanted to take a ship and sail away, or so I was told by his group, later to find out that they were actually the betrayers that tried to kill him, making him flee toward East. We regrouped and told everyone my plan, they showed a light of hope in their eyes at that time and I felt like I finally got their trust at least a little. I was king not even for one year, of course, they wouldn’t believe me so easily. We rushed to the borders and when we finally passed, I saw inside the nearest city the same posters of my face, just like those inside my kingdom’s cities. I was confused, why are there posters of me inside the Jianhua Region when we were on such good terms and the king’s daughter was my fiancée? I sent a message through a pigeon, the same pigeon we used to send each other letters. After sending it, it never came back. I told the others to wait for me inside the village, there being posters only with my face. My fiancée’s name was Zi Jianhua, in the letter I sent her I asked for her to send someone in the Berry Village, right beside the huge city. I also asked her why are there posters with my face inside the city and if she could take me and some refugees under her wings. Seeing how the response wasn’t coming back I started to worry, I thought that maybe something happened at the palace or the pigeon was attacked. After 1 week, a group of 800 soldiers entered the village and started searching around, entering the villager’s houses and showing them a poster with my face on it. At that time I was outside of the village, looking from on top of a nearby hill. I knew that something wasn’t right if, by sending a letter to my fiancée would bring back soldiers trying to capture me. I sent a message to my subordinates, telling them I’ll go and visit the palace and see what happened. They were already accommodating inside the city. They already found jobs inside the cities, living care-free lives, even so, 300 of them still wished to get their homes back. In 2 weeks I finally got to the capital. I had to sneak inside the capital at night by climbing the walls. It was around 500 m tall so it took me around 2 hours to climb it. Fortunate for me, the wall had large stone countertops, making me able to hide in their shadows.” → Tian
Shen, Ashura, and the two high elves wore shocked faces for a while now.
“Is there a problem?” → Tian
Tian asked while tilting his head in confusion.
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