After the dust settled down, the absolutely silent arena entered a state of tension, waiting to see what they were all expecting, and indeed they were not disappointed. A battered and bruised body belonging to a middle aged man, had been beaten beyond recognition and smashed into the ground, with the Taiji symbol beneath it. One would never think that Bastian had accomplished such a feat in only two strikes.
The crowd went into an uproar when they saw that. Shouts of ‘Tempest Monk!’ where being uttered all across the arena. There was no need for the referee to even say anything, because everyone knew that Bastian had advanced to the next stage.
Following his usual routine, Bastian left the arena. As usual Teachers sent by the Dwight and York families were on standby waiting outside, but their attempts were once more futile.
Once he had lost his trackers, Bastian headed straight home. When he arrived, two big men fully adorned in armour greeted him with a salute. “Sir Bastian!”
“At ease gentlemen.” Bastian walked past the guards and entered the house, heading straight for Shasha’s office. Over the past few days, Shasha’s household had experienced quite a few changes.
Guy had approached Shasha with an offer a few days before, stating that he was more than willing to follow his command. After being scrutinized by Bastian, Guy and his men were accepted into the house. After seeing the same hint of worship in Guy’s eyes that Tino had, Bastian started feeling creeped out, but he kept his sentiments to himself.
Guy’s men were all Teachers. And high quality ones at that. Bastian had no doubt that he could not beat a single one in combat under normal circumstances. On the first day, they had met those fellows, it was Kenshin who took care of them, resulting in the men revering Kenshin severely.
On the other hand, they looked down upon Bastian quite a bit and were unwilling to follow his orders at first. Until they were told that he was twelve years old. At that point, Bastian had decided to reveal his true age, not only to gain the approval of the men, but to also reinforce the idea to Kai and Shasha that he was a powerful young master from a powerful family. An oath to the heavens from Bastian removed anyone’s doubt and the soldiers at that time had nothing but respect for Bastian. Even the way Kai looked at Bastian had changed.
According to the others, Bastian was at that time, a middle Acolyte, one who was able to defeat every fighter he faced with two blows at the age of twelve. Even Kai had to accept that this was a ridiculous concept.
Guy’s reaction was the strangest. He tried to look surprised, but Bastian saw that he actually was somewhat expecting that, making Bastian further curious as to who Guy was.
Bastian had probed Guy quite often, and he realized that he truly idolized him. Guy could take a bullet for Bastian. Bastian had no doubt about that, yet they had never met, and Bastian was confident that he didn’t have that much of a reputation. So why did Guy revere him so much?
Bastian did not want Guy to notice that he had seen through the latter, thus he kept the status quo. Shasha gave control of the troops to Bastian, who in turn made them into guards.
Thanks to Guy, Bastian’s grip on the soldiers was iron tight. Guy’s enthusiasm to work with Bastian, somewhat baffled the others but they put it at the back of their heads. Yet Bastian on the other hand, knew full well the difference between enthusiasm and fanaticism.
Guy had given Bastian a dan on the day he made his first visit. He stated that he wanted to improve the relationship between himself and those who were under Shasha. Bastian unceremoniously took the dan and broke through, leading to his current cultivation level.
Although the fanatic look Guy had in his eye bothered Bastian a bit, he couldn’t help but admit that Guy was useful and very intelligent.
Guy’s men were also just as impressive. Bastian could tell with a single glance that they could easily beat any of the Teachers who chased after him, whenever he finished a match. According to Kenshin, the higher the cultivation level, the greater the differences in strength within each levels. In other words, even amongst Teachers, there were lizards and there were dragons. According to Kai, Guy’s men were dragons, and Guy himself was a dragon king. Bastian found that hard to believe because through e-vision, he could tell that Guy and his men had roughly the same amount of qi.
All of them should be peak level Teachers, yet according to Kai that wasn’t so. Kai told Bastian that when he became a Teacher himself, he would understand, so Bastian put the matter in the back of his mind. Right then, he had more important matters to deal with
After passing a few soldiers here and there, Bastian arrived in Shasha’s office. The room had always been excessively large, but at that time, there was a massive round table in the middle instead of the room instead of the old tiny one.
This room had become the war council room, the war council being the body that decides how the city would be taken. It consisted of Shasha, Kai, Bastian, Kenshin, Guy and Tino. Kenshin was usually quiet, so it was the other five who were active. Creating that council was Bastian’s suggestion. Adding Tino and Guy were also Bastian’s suggestions.
Shasha and Kai thought that was a horrible idea as their beloved Tino and Guy would refuse to accept the fact that, a former slave would be of the same status as them, and possibly even higher. But after some assurance from Bastian and a test run, they discovered that, that was not the case. Guy was more than happy to accept the arrangement. The aloof Tino on the other hand, showed only some slight displeasure.
Although Shasha was head of the council, it was only in name. Bastian was the one who was really in charge. Guy was in charge of the soldiers, Tino information collection and espionage. Bastian was the strategist and Kai was Shasha’s advisor. Kenshin was surprisingly the vice head of the council, which meant officially the only one above him was Shasha. Kenshin had told Bastian that he wanted that position, much to Bastian’s surprise, so the latter gave in.
Once he entered the meeting room, Bastian saw that everyone was there except for Tino, which was not unusual considering the fact that she was the busiest of them all.