"Halt, tell us your identity!"
Outside Golden Flash City, Wang Lu and his teammates were stopped by the guards.
Two lightly armored guards crisscrossed their spears in front of the carriage. Although in front of the Nightmare steeds, the two ordinary-people-turned-guards’ blockade was like a mantis trying to stop a chariot, nevertheless, the guards’ posture was very firm.
"Hm, they haven’t lost their past spirit." Within the carriage, Aya secretly nodded.
The people of the Knight King should inherit the spirit of chivalry and humility without feeling inferior; even when faced with opponents that were far above them, they would maintain their posture. Now it seemed like although the Knight’s Kingdom has perished, the spirit of chivalry still lived on.
"What a joke."
For this reasoning, Wang Lu just shook his head and went out to greet the guards.
"Sirs, we are visiting scholars from the Eastern Continent." Wang Lu perfectly said in the common language of Western Continent, "Definitely not suspicious people."
The guards didn’t lower their vigilance. "Is there any document to prove it?"
Like many countries in the Nine Regions, commoner needed to prove their identity when traveling. There were similar rules in some countries in Western Continent. Especially in countries under the rule of Holy Light Religion, they must be doubly wary of the heretics from Nine Regions. This was the responsibility of the guards; even if Wang Lu and the others have extraordinary skill, there was no exception.
Wang Lu smiled. "Proof of identity? Of course."
With that, Wang Lu reached out for the cloth sack on his waist, which produced the metallic sound of many coins against each other.
"Please check this carefully, the document is absolutely reliable."
"Hey!" Aya called out in surprise. "Are you trying to bribe them? Don’t joke here okay, they couldn’t possibly…"
Before she could continue, she saw the two guards lightly smile and said, "We understand, you guys are really not suspicious people."
Then they no longer blocked the carriage, which freely marched into Golden Flash City.
After boarding the carriage, Wang Lu turned to look at the sluggish face of Aya. "Hahaha, it seems like some spirits are even more well-established than the spirit of chivalry!"
Aya said with a slightly unwilling tone, "T-This is only an individual phenomenon! I believe my people believe in the spirit of chivalry!"
Wang Lu shrugged. "Mm, you also still believe in love and Santa Claus right?"
"This—although I don’t know what Santa Claus is, what’s wrong in believing in love?"
Wang Lu let out a laugh and then turned to look at Liu Li. "Junior Sister, tell her."
While eating the flower cake, Liu Li said, "Senior Brother taught me that, love would come and go real quick, but only pork roll that is eternal."
"You! What dastardly things have you taught her!"
During their dispute, the carriage has entered the city center. There were many inns in the city, but they somewhat couldn’t meet the demand of the influx of large amounts of tourists. Most of them were already fully booked. However, considering the team’s sensitive identity, Wang Lu steered the carriage straight towards an inn in a secluded location based on Aya’s direction.
"Ah, it has been so long, but this inn is still operating." When the carriage approached the inn, Aya lightly sighed. "It’s really bringing me memories. A long time ago, I briefly lived here during my Golden Flash City inspection. Although on the front this inn is inconspicuous, and usually few people would come, but this is actually run by an aristocratic family. The environment is quite comfortable, and the service is also very intimate."
However, once they came out of the carriage, Aya was surprised to find that there were already a lot of people there. Most of them were dressed luxuriously, and a lot of them showed the flavor of strong professions.
"Sorry, the inn is already full so we can’t entertain more people."
At the entrance, a thirteen to fourteen years old nimble and resourceful girl, with face filled with apology, turned down the guests.
"Are you blind? Our master is the only son of the Huge Rock City’s secretary, how dare you disrespect us!"
"Oh, so that’s how it is. Then I will explain this to the guests that just checked in, so that they will yield the room for you guys. Would that be okay?"
"Humph, you know what’s good for you!"
"Mm, the guests that just checked in claim to be the whole family of the Master of the Red Scale City. I think, since it’s the family of the Master of the City, they ought to sympathize with your difficulties. I’ll immediately go and talk to them!"
"Wait a minute! It’s the Master of the Red Scale City? Then, there’s no need…" A group of people came back in disgrace.
After successfully thwarting the son of a city’s secretary, the girl let out a long breath and then swept her gaze to the crowd that still gathered at the doorway and then shouted, "My inn is already full, there’s no use in staying here! Or do I have to talk to the guests who have already checked in? The best speaker is the Red Scale City Master."
The best one to talk to was a City Master? Although Red Scale City could only be counted as Brettonia’s third-tier City, the guy was still a City Master after all. Upon hearing this, the crowd finally began to disperse. Obviously, they realized that there was no sense in continuing to pester here.
In the carriage, Wang Lu turned his head and looked at Aya, who was watching the highly capable little girl with emotion. "She is exactly the same as her grandparents. That year, the one who received me is such a little girl. Only at that time, there were not that many guests."
Wang Lu frowned. "There are indeed too many people in the city."
On their way, he noticed that the city’s visitors were unusually many. The inns, shops, and other places were full of people. The city was filled with a carnival-like atmosphere, as if they were celebrating a grand festival.
"Now what?" Wang Lu pointed at the fully booked inn.
"I have something, but I don’t know if it would work," Aya softly said, got out of the carriage, strode toward the little girl, and then showed her a badge.
The little girl showed a puzzled expression as her countenance greatly changed. She swept her gaze at Aya in surprise. Since she was still quite young, Aya couldn’t see the reason behind this.
"What? Has it expired?" Aya calmly asked.
"N-No, please come in!" The little girl hurriedly shook her head and then reached out and pushed the front door to welcome Aya in. A moment later, filled with emotion, Aya came out with a handful of golden keys.
"The inn hasn’t changed the rules, but the current boss is the sixth generation descendants of the boss at that time when I was previously here. The little girl is his daughter. In the past hundred years, the badge issued by the inn is still valid; the inn always reserves the badge holder the most superior room. It’s just that, even the inn boss doesn’t recognize me."
"After a hundred years, although you still have the same appearance, no one is obviously able to recognize you. If not from the star in the sky, aren’t your Western Continent people grow old fast… Oh, I almost forgot, what’s going on in this town? Why are there so many people?"
Aya said, "Just now, the little girl said to me that Golden Flash City is about to hold a ceremony to select the best-talented person. The Master of the Dragon City would personally appear to pick. Once confirmed there’s a potential for excellent talent, the winner would go back to the Dragon City with the Dragon City Master to join the Dragon City Guards."
"Dragon City is the oldest city in Brettonia, the capital of many dynasties. However, it later became decadent and depraved. During my reign, the capital was moved somewhere else, and Dragon City was severely improved. The Eight Corps of Dragon City is dismissed, replaced by a group of elite city guards. It was one of the most elite armies in the country. It has the most complete range of different professions, as well as the most systematic training method. From beginner to high order, there’s the necessary method in Dragon City Guards. Now after a hundred years, the reputation of Dragon City Guards seems to be higher than the original. Joining the Dragon City Guards means there’s an infinitely bright future ahead, which attracts people from many areas; that’s why there are many people in this town. This ceremony is held once every three years and it’s just started in the last few decades, that’s why I never heard of it."
"So that’s how it is. It’s somewhat similar to Spirit Sword Sect’s Immortal Gathering."
"Yes. Wasn’t the scene in the Spirit Creek Town previously like this?" Aya said, "I just feel strange that, after so many years had passed, during which Brettonia has experienced a great change, I remember that when my kingdom perished, Dragon City hasn’t been spared, and it experienced a big storm… But after a century, Dragon City has completely restored its brilliance. Is it really because this ancient city has an unexpected vitality?"
Wang Lu said, "So, we sit quietly and watch." After a pause, Wang Lu gazed at the distant Golden Flash Town town square. The preparation to welcome the Dragon City Master has already been underway. "I always thought that we'd encounter a pleasant surprise."
The group stayed at that inn. As per Aya’s words, they stayed in the most upscale room within the inn—the innkeeper’s own room. While Wang Lu’s team stayed there, the innkeeper’s whole family moved to the villa on the outskirt of the town.
During this period, the one who was responsible for the room service was the innkeeper’s daughter, that thirteen to fourteen years old delicate little girl. The little girl was indeed worthy of being the descendant of her ancestors, although young in age, her professional quality has already been quite amazing. Everyday she would come in and tidy up Wang Lu’s and other people’s room. She was very attentive and considerate. Rarer still was her good culinary skill, which was a pleasant surprise for Wang Lu’s team. The so-called gourmet food of Brettonia was made with an exceedingly high standard by her. Because of this, in just a day’s time, Liu Li has already considered her as a friend.
The young girl was lively, and her mouth usually never stopped moving while tidying up the room. Unlike her ancestors who have been here for generations, she showed great curiosity to the outside world. Whenever she had the time, she kept pestering Wang Lu and his teammates, asking about the world beyond Golden Flash Town, whether the Eastern City States were as prosperous and developed as rumored, and what kind of magical place was that mysterious Eastern Continent.
At the same time, through his chat with this young girl, Wang Lu managed to gleam out the things that happened in Brettonia in recent years.
Once Aya’s Kingdom perished, for a time, Brettonia split into many feudal states. However, the feudal states civil war did not last too long. Thirty years ago, they were suppressed by a foreign force.
This foreign force, was, of course, Holy Light Religion. During Aya’s reign, Brettonia practiced their native religion and was wary of the infiltration of the Holy Light Religion. Only after Aya’s Kingdom perished did Holy Light Religion sweep over Brettonia in just ten years and establish authority in all the feudal states. Except for this drawback, they quickly ended the war and brought peace to the land.
In today’s Brettonia, there was no unified political entity. The country was composed of hundreds of city-states, of which one of the strongest force was Dragon City. In addition to the city itself, it also has more than thirty vassal cities. A relatively weak city such as Red Scale City was basically insignificant.
However, no matter how strong or weak the forces of these city-states were, they were all, in fact, under the rule and management of Holy Light Religion. Although there was no unified regime, there was a common belief. In this regard, the young girl actually has a veiled criticism.
"I hate these Holy Light Religion people. I always feel like they harbor ill will to the people of Brettonia. For example, this selection ceremony of the Dragon City Guards. On the surface, even the Master of Dragon City would personally appear, but in fact, this is the Holy Light Religion’s selection. So I don’t envy those who would be selected. Hey, you can’t let these words out, okay?"
The young girl grinned with a playful smile and spat out her petite pink tongue.
Wang Lu nodded and then softly said, "So this is actually Holy Light Religion’s selection?"