(unedited)

GDK 795: She is interested in you!

Ralph may be unfriendly to everyone, but his loyalty to Wallace was unquestionable. Despite the fact that no one liked Ralph, Wallace trusted him all the same.

One by one the Divine Guard Chiefs and family clan patriarchs dispersed. Andre understood that his brother Wallace wanted to have a word with Ralph so he turned to Carmelita smilingly as said, “Let’s go, Carmelita!” Carmelita nodded knowingly and followed, leaving Wallace and Ralph alone in the viewing stand.

“About what happened today, well, don’t take it to heart,” after looking around and seeing that no one else was around, Wallace took a deep look at Ralph and consoled him.

“My Lord, I refuse to concede!” said Ralph with his head lowered. A stifled growl came from his throat. He then raised his head and said to Wallace, “I have always trained the Second Corps divine guards in the manner which Your Lordship has commanded. It is always the Second Corps that handled and solved the most dangerous and challenging missions. We did not obtain the strength, power, and privilege we have through mere luck but exchanging it with the lives of our divine guards. It did not come without great sacrifices.”

“I understand,” Wallace nodded calmly and said, “It is the Second Corps that have resolved countless challenging issues that plagued the City. Rest assured, the Second Corps’ position will not be affected by today’s outcome.” After taking a short pause, Wallace added, “No matter what happens, the Second Corps belongs to the House of Sainte. And no matter how strong the Fifth Corps becomes, it belongs to Bryan; it belongs to the House of Han. Can you get what I’m saying?”

Ralph stared blankly and thought in silence for a moment before he replied, “Yes, understood!”

Ralph and his Second Corps were powers wielded by Wallace which he used for securing his own position and privilege. Wallace needed someone to intimidate the other major family clans for him; someone who will be unpopular; someone like Ralph.

As the City Lord of the City of Shadows, Wallace must not act in a certain manner that would tarnish his image and public reputation. But fortunately for Wallace, he had Ralph. Wallace did not have to sully his hands for Ralph will make the lives of those Wallace disliked very miserable. Ralph would take the blame and be the hated villain while Wallace remained a just ruler. Due to the unique nature of Ralph’s role, he was destined to be hated by almost everyone, even some from the House of Sainte.

All this was of Wallace’s design. It was all because of Wallace that Ralph would be as unpopular as he was.

After hearing Wallace’s words, Ralph understood that even if the entire City of Shadows despised him, Wallace the City Lord will still have his back because he and the Second Corps existed for Wallace. Just as they relied upon Wallace, Wallace relied upon them.

“Excellent,” Wallace put on a faint smile and said, “So, in summary, regardless of whether you have won or lost the competition, yours and the Second Corps’ position in the City will not be affected whatsoever.”

“Understood, my Lord!” Ralph was finally at ease. Shortly after, he sneered grimly and said, “In the competition between Divine Guard Chiefs happening in three days, I will be sure to humiliate him!”

Wallace shook his head and looked at Ralph somewhat pitifully. He let out a soft sigh and said, “Forget about it. You don’t stand much of a chance defeating him in a duel.” Wallace knew that Han Shuo had managed to amputate Hofs, the City Lord of Hushveil City and a late-stage highgod who was much stronger than Ralph. If Han Shuo could defeat Hofs, then Han Shuo could easily defeat Ralph.

“That’s impossible! I’m sure I can defeat him!” asserted Ralph confidently. He solemnly vowed, “Rest assured, my Lord, I will crush him!”

Needless to say, Wallace wouldn’t reveal to Ralph about the fact Han Shuo had defeated Hofs. Although Wallace knew with absolute certainty that Ralph was no match against Han Shuo, there wasn’t much that he could say to convince Ralph so. Therefore, he only told Ralph to be careful in the duel.

Ralph’s mind was eased after having received the consoling words of Wallace’s. He left the viewing stage and returned to his campsite to punish his divine guards who had failed him and to prepare to avenge his defeat in three days.

***

Aobashi and Erebus went to the Fifth Corps campsite cheerfully with bottles of fine wine in their hands. They came to celebrate Han Shuo’s victory. Erebus looked especially delighted as though it was his own Third Corps divine guards who had won the competition.

“Oh? Who are you?” Soon after stepping into the campsite, Erebus noticed Spider Goddess Rose who was standing beside Han Shuo. As they were both cultivators of the energy of darkness, Erebus was able to perceive the terrifying power Rose possessed in no time.

As Han Shuo was worried that someone might recognize Rose, he rarely took Rose to places crowded with strangers. Therefore, it was only now that Erebus and Aobashi have met Rose for the first time.

Aobashi too was stunned for after secretly sensing for a moment, she discovered that this beauty wearing a dark headscarf had the same strength as herself.

<i>Since when does this chap have such a powerful expert by his side?</i> thought the astonished Erebus and Aobashi. 

“She is Rose, a guard of my House of Han,” Han Shuo introduced Rose to the two smilingly.

Rose was always cold to everyone. She nodded at Erebus and Aobashi and left without a word.

The campsite was enormous and there were Fifth Corps divine guards scattered everywhere. Rose disappeared from their sights in no time.

“You sure are remarkable, Bryan. Your House of Han has only just started out but you have managed to recruit an expert of this grade!” praised Erebus as he casually tossed a bottle of fine wine to Han Shuo. He smilingly added, “You really are inconceivably amazing. I thought that Ralph’s Second Corps will always take the monopoly of the first place. But unexpectedly, you have managed to defeat him!”

“And just how long has it been since you took over the Fifth Corps? A bright future awaits you, Bryan!” praised Aobashi smilingly.

“Oh? Isn’t this Lord Aobashi and Lord Erebus? I have arrived at the Mountain Range just today and heard that Lord Bryan has defeated the Second Corps and avenged my Aunt. I have come to express our gratitude to Lord Bryan!” an elegant voice came from the distance. Jiya of the Kinson Family was seen walking to the party gracefully in a lovely smile.

Han Shuo fell into a daze. He did not expect that this beauty of the House of Kinson would come to thank him personally. Kiffan and his team had injured many of Camilla’s Fourth Corps divine guards. During the conflict with Ralph, Camilla had defended and sided with Han Shuo. She was grateful to Han Shuo for his Fifth Corps’ teaching Kiffan and his company a bloody lesson.

“Do Lord Bryan find me unwelcoming?” asked Jiya softly in a somewhat uneasy voice when he saw Han Shuo stand blankly.

“How would I find a beauty like you unwelcoming? Haha, I’m just worried that Miss Jiya will find a crude army camp like mine unpleasant,” replied Han Shuo laughingly.

“Thank you for the polite words, Lord Bryan,” replied Jiya smilingly. Then, with her bright eyes, she glanced through the divine guards standing behind Han Shuo. Her gaze lingered a little longer at Bollands, Sanguis, and Gilbert than the others. She then praised, “Lord Bryan is truly extraordinary for being able to train the Fifth Corps divine guards to such a level in such a short time!”

“They are talented. I did not do much at all,” replied Han Shuo very modestly. The two continued to exchange pleasantries for a while.

Jiya was outstandingly beautiful. Her charming appearance had gathered the gazes of all the divine guards in the area. These divine guards were wearing Lenny faces. It seemed to them that this Jiya who was renowned for her beauty in the City of Shadows was throwing herself to Han Shuo. They secretly admired their Chief’s ability to charm beautiful ladies.

Although Rose was also a beauty, she would always be ice-cold towards everyone. In addition, Han Shuo’s divine guards had all witnessed Rose’s inhuman strength. They were all afraid of Rose and revering of her. They dared not to look at Rose with unbridled gazes for they were afraid that Rose might give them a beating.

However, the beautiful and powerful Rose was very submissive to Han Shuo. She would comply with any of Han Shuo’s orders obediently!

In Han Shuo’s House of Han there were many more nubile maidens. Each and every one of them was heavenly beautiful and drop-dead gorgeous. Not only was Han Shuo able to make his ladies live together harmoniously, but somehow, even more beauties were throwing themselves at Han Shuo. That was way beyond what an ordinary man could do!

These divine guards were admiring of Han Shuo’s valiant strength but they were even more admiring of Han Shuo’s ability to subdue stunning beauties. They thought that Han Shuo had reached perfection in the art of wooing females.

The divine guards watched and listened attentively to their conversation. They had never been so focused. They memorized every word, movement, and expression on Han Shuo’s smiling and relaxed face. They intend to do a detailed analysis later in the hope of improving their own skills in this aspect.

With Jiya present, the three Divine Guard Chiefs couldn’t talk as freely as they usually do. After more gentle laughter and talking to each other politely about unimportant things, Jiya took leave on her own accord. But before she left, she repeatedly emphasized that she was most admiring of a character like Han Shuo. Her gaze towards Han Shuo even contained a tiny hint of something unspoken.

“That girl is interested in you!” soon after Jiya left, Erebus whose face had turned blushed from alcohol immediately said in a suggestive smirk.

“That’s nonsense. Her main purpose here is to express her goodwill so that her family clan will get a bigger chunk of the medicines I will refine,” said Han Shuo smilingly.

“Look at you, you clearly know it to be otherwise! What a jerk!” said Aobashi as she glared at Han Shuo. She then added, “But you sure have the chips to be proud of yourself. That girl is known in the City for her very high standards. We have never heard of her trying to approach any young man. The fact that she has come here alone to thank you is more than enough to conclude that she is interested in you. I’ll be damned if she’s not!” 

Han Shuo shrugged and said, “It doesn’t concern me. I already have plenty of ladies in my home and I’ll get a headache whenever I see a beauty. If anything, I hope that she wouldn’t bother me!”

Suddenly, Aobashi stared angrily at Han Shuo and put her hands on her hips. “Do you get a headache when you see me?”

“N- No! I don’t!” replied Han Shuo hastily. But for some reason, Aobashi seemed even angrier after hearing the answer. Han Shuo immediate realized he had answered poorly.

Aobashi asked in a loud and angry voice, “Are you saying that I’m not a beauty?!”

 

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