Xue Ying, Zong Ling, and Tong San stood before the gates of the castle as they witnessed the departure of the people from the Dragon Mountain Mansion.
With that, they began advancing back into the castle.
"Uncle Zong, Uncle Tong." The sound of the crunching snow beneath Xue Ying echoed as he softly spoke, "I have already obtained the Iron Order. It is time to tell me what exactly happened to my parents in the past."
Zong Ling and Tong San met each other’s glances.
"Uncle Tong has been around your mother for a long time, he knows a lot more than I do," Zong Ling replied, "All I know are the mere words left behind by your mother."
"Xue Ying." Tong San began as he watched the sky overhead gradually become tainted with falling snow, "I came from a remote Lionman tribe. One fateful day, a powerful caravan wanted to capture all of us, and those who chose to fight back were all killed! After being caught, our names were registered on the list of "Rebels", and we were forced to become slaves!"
"Rebels?" Xue Ying gasped.
The number of slaves in the Empire were scarce.
Only those who had committed grave sins, such as the killing of innocent civilians, people of nobility, committing rebellion, or those who seeked to betray the entire Empire, would become slaves! In other words, only those who had committed the most heinous of crimes would be enslaved.
"Do not be surprised, the Empire has been around for more than 9000 years, and has long been corrupted. With the influences of those powerful families, dirty deeds would not be problematic if they are not obvious. Needless to say, our Lionman tribe was weak, and with no evidence, who would dare to help us?" Tong Ling sneered.
"I became a slave, and through trafficking, I was sold to the Mo Yang Clan!"
The Mo Yang Clan is one of the most influential and powerful families in the Eastfield Provinces, including the Bellfeather County which is all under the complete control of Mo Yang Clan! It has been that way for more than a thousand years." Lionman Tong San continued, "We were given simple names, Tong Yi, Tong Er, Tong San, Tong Si, Tong Wu...And I am that Tong San."
"When the heirs of the Mo Yang Clan came to pick their slaves, I met your mother." Lionman Tong San smiled. "Back then, your mother was still young, 13 years old, even younger than you are now."
Xue Ying listened attentively.
"She was carefree..."
"She would play games happily everyday, as an innocent little girl, and did not look down on a slave like me. Even when I was violently abused by the other Mo Yang heirs, she would cry in anxiety, and even retaliate back in anger."
Lionman Tong San looked up at the beautiful snowing sky yet again. "All these memories are just some trivial little things. I thought I would live in the Mo Yang Clan the rest of my life, but who would have thought, that in the year she turned 24 years old, the Mo Yang Clan would have arranged a marriage forcefully to a middle aged man who was about 152 years old?"
"152 years old?" Xue Ying widened his eyes.
‘Mother back then was only in her early 20s, and the other guy was over 150 years old?’
‘You must be joking.’
"It is said that the clan is even more powerful than the Mo Yang Clan and is among the top three clans of the Bellfeather County. Thus the Mo Yang Clan shamelessly offered the hand in marriage of such a young lady." Tong San continued, "She had never met such a grievance, and facing such a scary situation with no experience, how could she possibly tolerate it? As such, she took advantage of a chance opportunity and escaped."
"Escaping from Bellfeather County and even the Eastfields Province! After a long treacherous journey, she came to the Tranquil Sun Province."
"I followed my master, and so began an adventurous life for both her and myself. Afterwards, I soon became acquainted with Zong Ling and got to know your father Dong Bo Lie."
"Those years of adventuring were so amazing, battling between life and death, relying on each other, and forming such strong loyalty and friendship. Even when your mother was worried that her past would burden your father and the others, she still revealed her history," Lionman Tong San said.
Zong Ling nodded, "We only know of the Mo Yang Clan’s current information thanks to your mother! We, who do not see death as a threat, would obviously not fear the Mo Yang Clan! Haha, as such, we do not care!"
"And then your father and master got together." Lionman Tong San laughed, "And she only decided to stop adventuring when she became pregnant with you. As such they looked for a place to settle in, that is when they returned to your father’s hometown, the Azure River County!"
"What happened from then on, you should already know as we stayed peacefully in Azure River County for eight years. However, the Mo Yang Clan still managed to find us, and took away your parents."
Xue Ying nodded lightly.
‘So that’s what happened...’
It was already horrible to have arranged marriage, but to a 152 years old man? Even Legend Rankers could only live at most to 200 years old, and many died around the age of 170 or 180!
"The Mo Yang Clan is an old clan that spans over millenniums, and the traditional rules of the clan are still strict." Lionman Tong San continued, "Your mother will naturally be severely punished for trying to escape her marriage."
"I do not understand." Zong Ling snickered, "These powerful families, letting heirs from their own clans be sacrificed, aren’t they ashamed? Or do the elders of these clans no longer care about their younger generations?"
"Zong Ling, the Mo Yang Clan has been around for thousands of years, not to mention they have tens of thousands of members from their clans! They would not care to sacrifice a few!" Lionman Tong San responded.
"If they are so powerful, there is no need for a young descendant to be married to a 100 years old guy! If the clan is ruined, so be it, but using such a shameless act of forceful marriage to consolidate clan’s status, it is plain disgusting!"
‘Stand up for mother, she doesn’t deserve this!’ Xue Ying indeed had such angry thoughts.
Being powerful, will earn the coaxing from others. Once weak, one should just let it be ruined! There was no such thing as an eternity for a clan.
"The Mo Yang Clan have caught your parents, what can we do to save them now?" Tong San shook his head in dismay.
"You have contacted the Dragon Mountain Mansion, are there any plans?" Zong Ling asked, earning Tong San’s attention.
"We still lack accurate information, right now we can only wait for yet another month." Xue Ying replied.
According to each clan’s strength.
The entire Empire had a total of 19 provinces, consisting of six land provinces with the rest being ocean provinces.
For example, the Tranquil Sun Province’s strongest "Eternal Wind Knight," Chi Qiu Bai’s clan! Those that had the managerial powers to affect an entire province were considered first-class clans.
Just like the Azure River County’s Si Clan! The Eastfield Province’s Bellfeather County’s Mo Yang Clan, also had complete control of a county. The Si Clan’s strongest member, Si Liang Hong, was a Legend rank with her transformation into a Blood Demon, while Mo Yang Clan’s strongest was that of a pseudo-Transcendent! Such control over a county in the whole of the Empire could only be regarded as a Second-class clan.
"With the power of my Ancient bloodline and my spear, I have strength comparable to that of a Silver Moon Knight." Xue Ying reminded himself. "In the future, I will be fully capable of surpassing Si Liang Hong and that pseudo-Transcendent!"
Like the Firewood Knight with his awakened Ancient bloodline, who was capable of killing a Transcendent with just a swing of his axe.
This was his intended goal.
If one had such amazing strength, even without asking, Mo Yang Clan would undoubtedly return his parents back obediently.
‘I wonder how my parents are right now?’ Xue Ying was anxious. He was worried if anything had happened to them. He did not dare to think, but he knew if anything had happened...he would definitely make Mo Yang Clan clan regret it!
"One more month, soon there will be news from the Dragon Mountain Mansion." Xue Ying said, trying to suppress his anxiety.
Time goes on day by day.
Half a month later, the Great Mage Bai Yuan Zhi came to the Snowrock Castle.
Xue Ying personally waited for him by the gates and asked, "Great Mage, what could have brought you here personally, surely you could have let your servants come?"
"Haha, it would seem that Silver Moon Wolf King was indeed killed by you. I was suspicious before, but now the entire Water Rites Town has heard the news. The Bent Blade Union envied your Silver Moon Wolf King fur and was killed by your spear. Now everyone is hailing you as our finest warrior!" The white robed old man, Bai Yuan Zhi, chuckled, as his group of disciples behind him eyed Xue Ying anxiously.