Written by Tinalynge & Blue Jay
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Chapter 61 – Advancement in Rank
Luo Xiao sighed. It seemed that he had to be beaten again, but just as he was accepting his fate he heard a yelp of pain and he quickly let go of Luo Xiao.
Luo Xiao was surprised when he saw this and instead of rushing away, he turned around to look at what was happening.
The hand that had grasped Luo Xiao was now bleeding, the tendons within the hand had been severed cleanly, but no one knew who had done so
Not even a shadow had been seen at the time he had been attacked, all of them were Sky ranked experts, so to be unnoticed like this, the attacker had to be at least an Emperor ranked expert.
Luo Xiao was quite surprised as well until he thought about the Shadow Guards he had seen at Jiang Yao’s mansion. Could it be that it was the shadow guard who was playing tricks on them?
But if it was the Shadow Guard, why had they not stepped up the day before when he had been beaten black and blue. He still had bruises covering all his body now.
The one who had lost the tendons on his hand was filled with horror. He looked at Luo Xiao as if he had seen a ghost, the other people stepped backward, not daring to even look at Luo Xiao. It was as if he was suddenly a monster who crawled up from the ten courts of hell to kill them one after another.
Truth was that Luo Xiao was as shocked as the others, but as he had guessed who was behind it, he could not help but feel his heart warm up as he realized that Jiang Yao had worried about him enough to send a shadow guard to look after him.
A gentle smile flitted across his face, making him seem like an angel that had descended into the mundane world, his gentleness so adorable that even the ones who had come to beat him were momentarily stunned when they saw his smile that bloomed on his lips.
Luo Xiao glanced at the many people surrounding him before he turned around and headed inside the barrier around his house.
When he entered he saw that two black-clothed experts were on the ground, both of them kneeling with expressionless faces.
“Young master, Mo San and Mo Si are here to look after you,” one of them said with a low and hoarse voice, “We apologize for our negligence yesterday, we were not able to protect you well, we will make sure that this does not happen again.”
Luo Xiao waved his hand, “it matters not, the fact that you were here now is already out of my expectations,” he said with a gentle smile on his face. “Jiang Yao is very generous to have sent the two of you to come and look after me,” he continued, the way he called Jiang Yao’s name made the two shadow guards twitch the corners of their mouths and their eyes deepened with darkness.
Jiang Yao was their master, they would never let anyone call his name casually like this unless they were of a direct line of descendants from royal blood, but now a young boy who was so weak that they could kill him with a snap of their fingers called him so intimately.
But they understood the value of Luo Xiao in their master’s heart since he had sent his treasured shadow guard to guard him. Originally they were against it and even when they saw him being beaten the day before they had not stepped forward to stop it, but when they saw him take the beating without batting an eyelid or crying out in pain, he won their respect.
“Oh right, don’t tell Jiang Yao about this,” Luo Xiao ordered them, “I do not want him to worry about me, and it is impossible for him to change how things are now at the academy. He also has a lot he needs to work with, so we do not need to add even more trouble to him.”
The two shadow guards were shocked when they heard what Luo Xiao said. They had thought that he would complain to Jiang Yao at the first possible moment so that he would be able to change his living situation, but when they heard him the respect they felt towards him grew increasingly.
In fact, Jiang Yao had ordered them to come back to report about his school life from time to time, but they were not given any specific time to return, so the two shadow guards decided to not return before absolutely necessary, and hope that he was no longer bullied by then. If Jiang Yao found out that Luo Xiao had been bullied on their watch, they could just as well throw away their lives.
Luo Xiao paid no extra attention to the two shadow guards. He knew that although they were respectful towards him was because of Jiang Yao’s orders. He wanted them to approve of him for who he was, not for Jiang Yao’s words.
The two shadow guards were amazed by Luo Xiao’s personality. They were both Emperor level experts, both were incredibly strong and revered by many, but in the eyes of Luo Xiao it was clearly nothing special.
The following day, rumors about Luo Xiao and the guy who had his tendons severed had spread throughout the entire academy and once more people were filled with worry about what kind of backer Luo Xiao had.
Although they thought he had a backer that was rather powerful, none of them felt that it was someone too amazing, as the ninth demon prince dared to go against him.
Luo Xiao was, as a result, once again the focus of everyone. He, however, was completely used to it by now, so the following morning he quickly went to the herb hall and went upstairs to the pill room.
Within the pill room was Overseer Zhu still seated the exact same place as he had been before when Luo Xiao had left, the floor was littered with a whole lot of papers that had been crumbled together into small balls.
Luo Xiao said nothing to disturb Overseer Zhu, and instead, he just started picking up the paper ready to throw it all out.
Overseer Zhu did not say what he was working on and Luo Xiao did not ask. He quickly cleaned everything and after a bit of time the room was once again completely cleaned, and he focused on the herbs that were placed on the shelves.
The herbs had been placed randomly, thrown to the shelves without any real organization so Luo Xiao decided to start sorting them out. Although he did not know anything about herbs he could still recognize the herbs that were similar, and then he sorted them out by their appearances.
When he was done, Luo Xiao sat down behind Overseer Zhu, he had done everything that he could and had nothing more to do.
Since he just had to wait for Overseer Zhu to need him, he decided to spend the time cultivating. Every moment was precious when it came to cultivating and he sat down allowing for the dense heaven and earth essence to enter his body.
Luo Xiao felt his strength grow rapidly. It was as if there were an even better environment for cultivating within the pill room than outside, and after considering it, it made sense.
This room was filled with herbs, pills, pastes, and salves all of which contained a surplus of energy, and this energy was slowly released in the room during the process of refinement. Although not much of it was released, considering how many herbs had been refined within the room, much energy had been released.
This energy was now being consumed by Luo Xiao. He felt how the sea of soul energy within his soul palace was twisting and churning, absorbing the refined soul energy like a hungry beast.
Soon he felt the energy had hit a bottleneck, he was about to break into the middle Sky Rank, but it depended if he had the ability to break through the bottleneck or not.
He understood that he was currently at a very important place in his cultivation if he was disturbed now he would receive some serious injuries, but he was willing to take the risk of being injured if it meant that he could break into the middle Sky Rank.
Zhu Tian sensed the energy fluctuations behind him and he raised an eyebrow in surprise. He turned around to look at the younger man, saw how his room was now incredibly neat and tidy, even the herbs had been sorted in batches depending on their species.
The child was surprising him with how he had not decided to complain but instead worked hard in every moment.
Luo Xiao felt the energy roiling in his soul palace, and it constantly bashed against the bottleneck, trying to loosen it, and slowly it started to break.
The energy continued to hit against the bottleneck until he finally managed to break into the middle Sky Rank, and when he succeeded a triumphant smile emerged on his lips as he opened his eyes, a glimmer of gold flashed across his dark eyes.
Seeing the glimmer of gold, Zhu Tian widened his own eyes in shock. The gold was pure and clear like it was at an Astral Soul, could it be that this child was an Astral Soul?
“Congratulations,” Zhu Tian said as he looked at the child and then reached out his hand, “Lend me your card.”
Luo Xiao was unsure about which card he had to hand over, so he handed over both the black and the white card. When Zhu Tian received them he poured some energy into the white one until he realized that Luo Xiao was marked as a Heavenly Soul.
A Heavenly Soul was rare, but compared to an Astral Soul it was much more common, so when he saw that it said Heavenly Soul he was quite disappointed.
Still, he did not let this disappointment show and instead handed back the cards to Luo Xiao who puzzled accepted them.
“I am done with what I need to do here today, we are going to oversee the herb fields now, so come, follow me.”
Overseer Zhu stood up and went out of the room closely followed by Luo Xiao. As they entered the first floor they found that a group of students were there to exchange some points for herbs.
When they saw that Overseer Zhu appeared, they all respectfully looked at him, but when they noticed Luo Xiao behind him, their faces turned ugly.
“Who is that?”
“Is that not the guy that all of them are talking about, that Luo Xiao?”
“Isn’t it? I heard that he crippled the hand of someone yesterday.”
“I heard that he is the assistant of Overseer Zhu now.”
“No way! Overseer Zhu never wanted an assistant, why is he so lucky?!”
Overseer Zhu was smiling amiably as always as he walked down the stairs followed by Luo Xiao who was also completely carefree and casual.
The group dared not speak up when they came down, but they all glanced at Luo Xiao as to see what this hot topic actually looked like.
Although everyone at the academy had heard about Luo Xiao, not many had actually seen him yet, and everyone was filled with curiosity towards him.
Everyone had an opinion about him, some hated him, others pitied him, most found him an interesting pastime and something to gossip about whenever they had the time.
It was only one person within the entire academy who thought of Luo Xiao as a friend, and that was Jin Chuan, but she had been busy recently and felt that if she looked for him, she would just add to his troubles.
She was waiting for Luo Xiao to return to some peace before she once again wanted to appear in front of him, but she paid extra attention to all the gossip she heard about him, and she was stunned silly by the fact that he had crippled the hand of an expert the day before.