"Wushuang, congratulations. Your grade is excellent," Hu Ziyan called out from a distance.
"Ziyan, how is your grade?" Qin Wushuang had only briefly seen Hu Ziyan and Fang Xiaozhong on the day of the Martial Arts Student Exam.
"Not as good as you! Wushuang, I am very impressed by you!" Hu Ziyang said in excitement, "You got a level seven grade among the martial arts students, you rock!"
Level seven? Qin Wushuang slightly frowned his eyebrows. It seemed that the examiners had deliberately suppressed his grade.
When Hu Ziyang saw his unhappy face, he hurried to advise him: "Wushuang, don't be dissatisfied. Level seven is the highest level for those of us who came from the lowest Humble Class. There are no level nines in this session's Martial Arts Student Exam and only one level eight. Among those four level seven martial arts students, you are the only one that came from the Humble Class."
Hu Ziyan spoke warm words because he felt happy and proud for Qin Wushuang.
Hu Ziyan had achieved a level six grade, which was beyond his expectations.
To the side, Qin Lianshan's acquaintances also congratulated him and politely chatted with him. Qin Lianshan was contented, and his voice sounded unprecedentedly chipper. Because today he felt a different atmosphere as if the skies of River County was much higher than before and his acquaintances smiled brighter than usual. When they talked to him, they were less casual but showed more formality and respect.
A Humble Class family that had cultivated a level seven martial arts student would surely have a bright future! People were smart, and they knew how to act per the situation. The Humble Class's level seven and the Wealthy Class's level seven might have vast differences between them despite being the same level!
Fang Xiaozhong also squeezed through the crowd and yelled exaggeratedly: "Big Brother Wushuang, level seven, so strong!"
This kid was also a level six. Together, with Qin Wushuang and Hu Ziyan, they were brought into the limelight in Eastwood Town! Right now, even when they walked, they felt light as if their bones were numb.
For him to have achieved a level six was significant, it would make his ancestors proud.
Among the tens of thousands of martial arts students, most of them got a level three or level four grade. This grade determined that they would have a laborious life.
Level five martial arts student was a rank in the upper half. If you trained hard, you would have no problems reaching the peak of the Power Force. If you worked even harder, and/or encountered some unusual opportunities, it would be feasible for one to break through the Power Force and enter the Genuine Force.
Martial arts student at level six would be the top performers. They could reach the Genuine Force for sure. Only, it would be up to them to determine which stage of the Genuine Force.
As for a level seven martial arts student, they were certainly the most skilled. It was one hundred percent guaranteed that they would enter Genuine Force. If they were lucky, it would not be an empty boast to say they could reach Stage Six of the Genuine Force.
Stage Six of the Genuine Force, what does it mean?
Among the Shu aristocrats, the minimum qualification to build an Ancestral Home was having a Stage Six Genuine Force Warrior to oversee the family! In other words, if you could reach Stage Six, then you would be qualified to compete for the Venerable Class and become one of the upper-level aristocrats.
Upper-level aristocrats would be equivalent to a country's elite class! It had a different intrinsic quality than the lower level aristocrats.
For example, in River County, there was only one upper-level aristocratic family—that was the Venerable Da Xi family.
You could ask the feudal authorities in River County regarding how much the Da Xi family owned. On paper, the feudal authorities controlled River County. However, the truth was everyone knew that the Da Xi family were the real rulers of River County.
The Venerable Da Xi family was only the lowest level of the upper-level aristocrats that were entitled to the Venerable title. However, they already had to power dictate the life and death of a county. From this fact, it was evident how much power the upper-level aristocrats had!
After a moment of silence, Qin Wushuang was relieved. After he had glanced through the fifteen public rolls, he saw Da Xi Yang's name had placed in first. He was the only level eight martial arts student.
In River County, this surname was a brand. Everyone who saw the name would know he was the child of the most privileged family in River County--the Venerable Da Xi family.
In River County, this surname meant power, honor, and glory.
Qin Wushuang not surprised, so he was not jealous. Da Xi Yang was able to get a higher-level grade than him because of his family background. It was not because he was stronger than him.
In River County, the Venerable Da Xi family was one of a kind. Thus, they must demonstrate their authority.
Since he had previously come forward as a witness for Qin Wushuang, Da Xi Yang had left a good impression on him.
Scrolling down the roll, there was four level seven martial arts students and of course, Qin Wushuang's name was listed at the bottom. The other three belonged to River County's three Wealthy Class families - the Xu, the Qian, and the Yun family. Among them, the child of the Xu family was, without a doubt, Xu Ting. And the child of the Yun family was that arrogant girl, Yun Qingyan.
Among the second row of the level seven martial arts student list, Qin Wushuang's name stood out. Many parents were discussing with each other as they tried to discover where Qin Wushuang, the dark horse, had come from.
There were about thirty towns that fall under River County's jurisdiction. Each town had sent about one or two hundred martial arts students. Regardless of the Qin family or Qin Wushuang, they were not famous in the River County.
Qin Wushuang stood among the crowd and heard everyone discussing his name, background and family. He felt these discussions were quite intriguing. Then, as you looked further down the roll, there were about forty martial arts students at level six. Hu Ziyan and Fang Xiaozhong were at this level.
Further down, there were over five thousand people ranked at level five and around three thousand people at level four, so these martial arts students encountered great difficulty when they tried to find their names.
Then, as one looked further down, only a few people were listed under level two. After all, this Martial Arts Student Exam was not a game. Most people would not have participated if they knew they had no hope.
As for level one, there were only a few names and these names stood out at the bottom of the long list. That Niu Dou's name was, of course, on the list.
This guy was simply everywhere. Just as he had noticed Niu Dou's name on the roll, the person in question walked over from the other side of the square with his shopkeeper father and elder brother, Niu Fen.
Niu Dou knew his grade would not be good. After calculations, he'd figured that he would be at level four at most. When those Eastwood Town martial arts students saw Niu Dou, they could not help but laugh. Each of them showed an ambiguous expression.
Deep in his heart, Niu Dou felt even more uncomfortable. Then, he approached the nearest public roll.
This time, three martial arts students from Eastwood Town were ranked at level six. Thus, their grade was much higher than other towns in River County's jurisdiction and was slightly below River County itself.
This grade made the Martial Arts Students of Eastwood Town very proud. They gathered in two's or three's and discussed the matter with enthusiasm. It seemed that they had earned that level six grade.
When they saw Niu Dou, one of the martial arts students of Eastwood Town mocked him: "Niu Dou, you should start looking for the bottom public roll. This one was the top public roll that only recorded names ranked level five and above."
Niu Dou glared at him. Behind him, Niu Fen instantly saw that Qin Wushuang's name was among the list of names at level seven. He could not help but yell out strangely: "What? Qin Wushuang, a level seven? Must be someone else with the same name, right?"
Hu Ziyan laughed: "Big Brother Niu Fen, it is not a person with a similar name. It is our Qin Wushuang, from Eastwood Town."
"That's right; Big Brother Wushuang is the pride of our Eastwood Town!" Fang Xiaozhong also added.
On the side, Qin Xiu was also looking at the public roll and was enjoying hearing the others discussing her little brother. When she heard Niu Fen yell out his doubts, she was angered. Thus, she shouted: "Wushuang, come here."
Qin Xiu had summoned her little brother for one purpose. She wanted everyone to know what kind of person Qin Wushuang was; he was the only level seven martial arts student of the Humble Class. He was her, Qin Xiu's, little brother and the child of the Qin family of Eastwood town!
On the side, many parents were spiritedly discussing the results. Most of them talked about that mysterious Qin Wushuang and wondered who he was. When they heard a beautiful lady call out Qin Wushuang's name, they all looked over in surprise. Their eyes, filled with jealousy, instantly locked on to Qin Wushuang.
Niu Fen opened his mouth widely and slapped Niu Dou's head in anger: "You idiot, you've shamed the Niu family! Look at this yourself, what kind of crappy grade is this?"
A level one martial art student was a very transparent grade. It would be much better if he had not received a grade at all. It was such a shameful thing for a name to be hung on the very bottom of the list!
Shopkeeper Niu's old face was scorching. At this time, he also did not know where he should put his face. To the side, Qin Lianshan said leisurely: "Haha, Shopkeeper Niu, don't be depressed. Although your son only got level one, but…"
Qin Lianshan imitated Niu Da's mocking tone from their previous encounter when he had ridiculed Qin Wushuang for coming out of the exam early.
Although Shopkeeper Niu glared at Qin Lianshan with eyes that were bigger than a cow's, he could not find the words to respond to him. Just when he could not find a place to vent his bellyful of anger, he saw his son, Niu Dou, standing there stupidly as if he were a tree trunk. Shopkeeper Niu's fury flared up and he slapped his son.
"Stupid idiot. You just had to lose your head before the big moment and make me lose all my face!"
Usually, Niu Dou performed well at training. However, he had lost his skill in this martial arts exam and had turned his usually high-profile father into a joke in his circle of people.
Niu Dou was depressed. When he thought back, he could not discover where the problem had come from. He'd only felt that his body had become quite heavy during the marathon test. Eventually, his legs felt as if they were filled with lead and he'd had to give up on that day. It was only on the second day, that he'd returned to finish the rest of the exams.
Thus, his grade had instantly dropped two levels. Moreover, his marathon result was so bad that it could not be used. In the end, he'd tragically received only a level one grade on the martial arts exam.
"Clear the road; Old Master Xu has come to look at the public roll!"
With a roar from the outside of the square, a few wolf-like and vicious servants started to clear the road to the public roll. That Xu Sanli and a few of his close aristocratic old masters had entered the stage.
"Wow, it really is the Xu family!"
"That's right! Among the four level seven martial arts students, one of them is Xu Ting, the young master of the Xu family. No wonder the Xu family is one of the four powerful families in River County!"
"Big families are, after all, prominent families. In each exam, their children would always stand out!"
These martial arts students did not felt annoyed when the vicious servants chased them away. On the contrary, they exclaimed in admiration.
On the side, Qin Wushuang suddenly came to understand something.
This was a world where people genuinely admired the powerful. When the powerful people bullied the weaker ones, they not only did not have the sense to resist but admired them and became blindly envious.
It seemed that in a world where the aristocrats ruled, the hierarchy existed for a reason!
When his thoughts arrived there, he, once again, felt a strong desire to build a powerful family emerge. And this time, he felt a sense of urgency to fulfill this desire.
"Old Master, Young Master Ting is ranked level seven and is right below the young master of the Da Xi family," one of the brown-nosing servants reported back.
Xu Sanli nodded his head frankly. He stared at the public roll for a moment, then his eagle-like eyes flickered to Qin Wushuang who stood to the side. A trace of doubt sprung up his heart as he asked: "Level seven martial arts student, Qin Wushuang?"
Qin Wushuang boldly stared back at him with a faint smile. He ignored Xu Sanli's dark eyes. In his mind, he determined that this Xu Sanli was not just at Stage Four of the Genuine force, he must have achieved Stage Five!
On the side, Zhang Maorui also found his "nephew's" name on the list of level sixes. Although he was proud, Qin Wushuang's name that was listed at level seven had stunned him. He genuinely wanted to know if it was a similar name to that hateful child.
A piece of trash that had dropped out from the exams early, how could he be a level seven martial arts student?
While he was still hesitating, a tall white horse came galloping up. A nimble warrior jumped down from the white horse. He was dressed in a standardized armor from head to toe. On the pit of his stomach, the symbolic plum blossom of the Zhen Wu Holy Place was painted there.
The warrior was no more than thirty years old. Taking large steps, he gracefully walked over.
"May I ask, who is Qin Wushuang?" This warrior did not act with arrogance even though he was a noble and had asked courteously.
No one would dare to look down on a Zhen Wu Holy Place warrior, even if he was a small character. That Xu Sanli coughed lightly and smiled fawningly: "This friend, where did you come from?"
That warrior did not bother to answer, and asked again: "Is Qin Wushuang here?"
Xu Sanli quickly closed his mouth since he had no luck in trying to initiate a conversation. He would not dare to be angry at a warrior who had come from the Zhen Wu Holy Place. It would be equivalent to digging one's own grave.
Qin Wushuang casually walked out from the crowd: "Qin Wushuang is here. What business do you have with me?"
That warrior gently released his frown and smiled: "It's good that you are here. Here is a letter for you."
As Qin Wushuang took the letter, that warrior cupped his hands in a salute and quickly left
on his horse. And toward these so-called old masters, he did not even speak a single word of courtesy.
Sending out a Zhen Wu Holy Place's warrior to deliver a letter, and he was delivering the letter to that infamous son of the Qin family?
On Xu Sanli, Zhang Maorui and their people's faces, each and every one of them showed an incredible look. They felt that this was a ridiculous scene!
Immediately, someone from the crowd exclaimed in admiration: "Wasn't that some influential person from the Zhen Wu Holy Place just a moment ago? So cool!"
"That's right! No wonder that symbol on his chest was so mighty... So divine!"
The exclamation immediately dimmed the light on the faces of those old masters. And as for Qin Lianshan and Qin Xiu, they thought they were in a dream when they had heard the name of the Zhen Wu Holy Place.
They had never imagined, even in their wildest dreams, that a mighty warrior from the Zhen Wu Holy Place would deliver a letter to Qin Wushuang!