Bastian’s mind was in chaos. Too many things had happened in such a short period of time. He hadn’t had enough time to adjust. First he had reincarnated into another person’s body, then he learned that he was in another world, and then he realized he was part of some weird inheritance game. Now to top it all off, he is now being sold as a slave
Bastian could not help but mentally sigh at these events. In his past life he was a terminally sick person. He had had time to mentally prepare for death. Fate however played a trick on him, placing him in a situation where he, a man who was even prepared for death, felt miserable.
Well when life throws you lemons…
Bastian quickly accepted his fate and decided to run with his new identity. Since he already had the memories belonging to the body’s original owner, Sebastian Tirius, he would not have a hard time adjusting.
Sebastian Tirius was a noble whose family originated from the Southern Grasslands. Just as Ben surmised, the boy had been discovered to have no talent in cultivation, so he was exiled, with some of the family’s servants leaving with him.
Since he was merely a child, his servants controlled every aspect of his life, deciding to move to one of the sub regions bordering the Western Deserts and the Southern Grasslands.
Sebastian’s family was very rich and powerful, even by the entire continent’s standards; therefore their servants were also very skilled in many areas. Cultivation being one of them. Creating a minor kingdom in such a poor and chaotic sub region, was as simple as child’s play for Sebastian’s servants.
They placed their master as king but took care of all official duties. Allowing Sebastian to lead a carefree and simple life. Unfortunately, Sebastian not only lacked talent in cultivation, but he was also very gullible. Due to his rather spoilt and carefree upbringing, Sebastian wasn’t intelligent and completely gave power to his servants, who had now also become his vassals.
One of his most trusted vassals tricked him into going out of the safety of his country. Sebastian being the carefree boy he was, only brought a few weak guards with him. Immediately after he had left the sub region, entering the Great Deserts of Shandelar, Sebastian was attacked by assassins.
After reviewing the boy’s memories, Bastian concluded that it was the vassal who tricked him into leaving the country who sent the assassins. Luckily for the boy, the huge dragon bombarded the battlefield.
Although Bastian had taken over the body, he could still feel the soul of the boy within him. Or rather it was now a part of him. Due to some circumstances unbeknownst to Bastian, he had been able to absorb the boy’s soul. Making it part of his own.
Bastian could feel a slight change in his thought process because of this. Although Bastian had taken over, traces of Sebastian were still in Bastian’s subconscious.
Bastian decided to live as Sebastian Tirius from this day forth. Since he had already cut ties with his previous life, he had no problems doing this. He had no intention of going back to Earth, because this world also felt like home to him. Due to Sebastian’s influence of course.
He quite liked the idea of being a king, and had every intention of making it back to his own kingdom. The question was, how he would do it. Especially considering he was going to be sold as a slave.
Since he had already experienced death, not to mention he had the mental fortitude from two lives, Bastian was very calm after adjusting himself. As for the whole mark bearer thing, he would deal with that later.
“You can open your eyes now. I know you’re awake.”
As soon as Bastian heard these words, he opened his eyes. Only to find Ben sneering at him. Like he was a trapped animal, whose sole purpose was to amuse him
Sitting cross legged on the makeshift bed, Bastian was fully occupied with his current activity.
After drinking a cup of water and eating some bread, Bastian sighed in relief. Although he still felt a little hungry, his thirst was quenched, lessening his burden.
Ben stared at all of Bastian’s actions. Eyeing him like a hawk. Bastian found this rather uncomfortable, showing his displeasure on his face without reserve.
Ben: “Don’t you want to know how I knew you were awake?”
Bastian: “Nope, I don’t care.”
Ben was amused by Bastian’s response. He was aware that Bastian had heard their entire conversation. He was also aware that Bastian knew his current situation. Yet after all of this, the boy was calm.
Sitting on the bed with a bored expression on his face. Like he had no worry in the world.
This isn’t the look a little boy should have.
Ben was rather disturbed by what he was seeing. He was a man who enjoyed seeing others suffer. It made him feel powerful and in control. He was looking forward to seeing a pampered little boy, cower before him. Begging for his life. The boy just laid there lazily on the bed. Like he had no care in the world. This completely baffled Ben. This is boy is supposed to be a noble boy, who had never suffered. He knew how ignorant and easy it was to assume that the privileged face no difficulties, but he couldn’t help it, he wanted to see this boy cower in an unfamiliar fear.
Perhaps, this young man knew more about suffering than most nobles.
There are plenty of battle hardened nobles but almost all have cultivation, not to mention they have to at least be of a certain age. Yet this boy acted as if nothing was going to happen to him.
No. It’s impossible. He’s probably pretending.
After assuring himself, Ben decided to probe the boy. He walked over to his bed and said with a condescending tone “You know what going to happen to you right?”
“You’re probably going to sell me to a slave trader.” Said Bastian, like it was the most obvious thing in the world.
Ben was angered by Bastian’s nonchalance. He grabbed Bastian by the hand and lifted him up, staring straight into his eyes in an attempt to scare the lad. Bastian immediately turned his face away, his expression showing extreme discomfort.
“Ha-ha, your acting isn’t that good. Look at you. Why don’t you admit you’re afraid.” said Ben with a face that showed that he was very pleased with himself.
“Please, I beg you let me go.” As Bastian said these words his body was trembling. Ben’s face lit up in twisted delight. “Please let me go, I can’t stand your awful breath. If I smell it any longer I might get sick.” said Bastian with a hint of mockery in his tone. Whilst saying these words, Bastian also used his free hand to cover his nose.
As soon as Ben heard these words his face became ugly. Bastian snorted in disdain at Ben’s reaction.
Ben’s body started trembling; rage filling up every cell of his body. Bastian knew full well that the value of a slave dropped if it had any physical defects or injuries. So he knew Ben would not harm him. Not to mention Bastian could tell that Ben was not a foolish man. He was clearly the type who put benefit above all else.
“Haha very good. Very good Young Master. I see you have quite the tongue on you.” Bastian could see the look on Ben’s face as he said these words. If looks could kill, then Bastian would have died a thousand times over.
“If you want to hurt me be my guest. As long as you do it with your mouth closed I don’t mind. I would close my nose but the human body doesn’t work that way, so I’m going to have to ask this of you.” said Bastian whilst snickering.
Ben was about to smack the boy. The problem was that he didn’t want to do damage. When slave traders examine slaves of high value, they do a very careful checkup. A slight scratch could reduce Bastian’s value by a lot.
That’s when Ben had an epiphany.
“Boy. I have a surprise for you. You can thank me later.”
Before Bastian could reply his vision darkened. He had lost consciousness.
When he regained consciousness, Bastian was shackled to a wooden pole outside. It was a quite a few meters away from the camp boundary, but was well within view of the sentries who marched around the camp’s perimeter.
Flip, I should stop doing that.
Bastian started to really dislike this habit of him becoming unconscious all of a sudden.
When he lifted himself from the ground, he heard a soft voice beside him.
“What? You’re already conscious?”
As he looked to his side, Bastian was dumbfounded. She was one of the most beautiful girls he had ever seen. Long wavy black hair reaching down to her waist, clear black eyes that looked as if they could trap your soul within. A petite body with no imperfections.
Ha. If I was really 12 years old I would have fallen in love.
Bastian was momentarily perturbed by her beauty, but at the end of the day she was just a little girl. Looking to be around 12 years old. Bastian was not a pedophile, so at most he was just impressed. Nothing else. He may appear 12 years old, but he had the soul of a 30 year old man.
The girl stared at Bastian with curiosity on her face. She brazenly stared at him as if she was looking at some strange animal. Bastian looked at his body to see just what was so strange. He found nothing wrong, yet the girl was still looking at him, as if he was an oddity.
“You know it’s considered rude to stare in some cultures, including mine.” Bastian was not happy about her behavior. The girl raised a brow in suspicion and crossed both hands on her chest.
“Well it’s not in mine.” Bastian found her reply hard to believe. When he had said ‘some cultures’ he was being sarcastic. She giggled when she saw that he was not happy.
“You’re an interesting one. Why are you awake? How are you normal?” She ignored Bastian’s displeasure and interrogated him. Much to Bastian’s displeasure.
“What’s that supposed to mean?” Her questioning was strange. It was as if it was strange that he was awake.
“I mean you’re not supposed to be awake. When you were brought here, they force fed you incado grass.”
As soon as Bastian heard this, his expression became ugly. Incado grass was a famous herb. Once ingested, it would cause the consumer to fall into state of perpetual nightmares. The victim would remain asleep for at least a day. Rumor had it, that this grass also affected your soul, and was an ingredient in a lot of magic involving the soul.
Bastian’s face was grim. “How long have I been out?”
“You were only out for a few minutes.” As the girl said this, she crawled closer to Bastian so she could more closely observe him. Unlike Bastian who only had his legs shackled, the girl also had her arms shackled to her own pole as well. Her pole was only a few meters from Bastian’s, so it wasn’t hard for her.
Bastian was at a loss. He was sure that he hadn’t dreamt anything, plus he felt fine. Consumers of incado grass not only had perpetual nightmares, but they also had hallucinations after they woke up. Bastian was not hallucinating at all, or at least he was sure he wasn’t.
As he was deep in thought, he happened to notice that the girl’s face was only a few inches away from his. Creeped out by this sudden advancement, Bastian backed away frantically.
“What are you doing? Please keep in mind I have no interest in little girls.” He did not hide the disgust on his face as he said this, for the image of a little girl on all fours crawling toward him, had left a bad taste in his mouth.
Little girls? Isn’t he only a boy himself? Does he think he is an adult?
The girl chuckled at what Bastian had said. He was becoming more and more amusing to her.
“I want to talk.” Said the girl, in an attempt to sound mysterious.
“Why did you need to get this close? I’m pretty sure we have been talking this whole time.” Bastian was a person who really cared about personal space, be it as a man or a boy.
“I needed to get closer because I wanted to examine you. Plus the matter I wish to talk to you about is sensitive, so it’s best if we keep our voices down.”
“How sensitive?” Bastian didn’t admit it, but the girl had piqued his interest.
The girl grinned mischievously, her big black eyes staring at Bastian like he was some a toy. Bastian had a bad premonition when he saw the look on her face. This time it seems his senses were right.
The girl’s next sentence changed the course of Bastian’s entire life.
“Are you a Mark Bearer or not?”