A female attendant led the Instructor and Junius back down the ostentatious corridors of the office. Decorated with cashmere draperies and gorgeous artworks, the administration office of the waypoint seemed to look more like a mogul’s mansion than a place of business. Compared to the humble furnishings of the Frie Clan, Junius felt that the mayor’s office was much more suitable for nobility.
After walking for five minutes, the duo finally reached a large, mahogany door, with gold plated handles that made the surroundings look modest in comparison.
“*Knock* *Knock*. Your Excellency, the guests have arrived.”
The female attendant knocked twice on the massive door, causing two loud sounds to echo through the chamber.
“Alright, send them in.”
A husky male voice called for them from the room in a monotonous tone.
Pushing the doors open, the attendant revealed the contents of the highest office in the waypoint. Shelves filled to the brim with an endless supply of paperwork, were the first things that Junius noticed. Standing at the side of the office, there was a ruddy, obese man, putting on a broad smile to welcome the duo. Recognising the person, the Instructor gave a slight nod to acknowledge his presence. The meaty man was precisely the constable captain that had greeted them when they first arrived at the town gates, Lewis.
Usually, the Instructor would greet his longtime friend immediately, but they were currently in the presence of the most influential authority in the waypoint. Sitting comfortably on his leather, cushioned chair, a lean and robust man, who looked no older than sixty, was busy reading the numerous amounts of reports placed on his desk.
His wrinkles occasionally furrowed as he read through the paragraphs but otherwise, the man was entirely focused on his job.
“Your Excellency Nadeo, it’s been a while.”
The Instructor gave a slight bow as he greeted the regal man. Seeing his mentor’s actions, Junius did the same. But compared to the Instructor’s small movement of the neck, Junius gave a much more angled bow. As a high ranking member of the Frie Clan, furthermore a Spirit Lord, there were not many people in the empire that could force the Instructor to give his utmost respects.
The mayor of Chilyoja Waypoint, although prominent in the area, was still just a Rank 58 Spirit Lord. If not for the formal occasion, the Instructor wouldn’t even have bothered to take a bow.
“Lou Frie, yes it has been a while…”
Putting down his pen, the mayor tidied his messy brown hair as he addressed his visitors. Giving a cursory glance, Junius could tell that the man had been holed up in this room for a long time. Creased robes and unwashed face, with dark, heavy eye bags, the Mayor seemed like he had been awake for the entire week.
“Your Excellency, thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to accommodate us. I truly appreciate it.”
“No matter, from what Lewis has told me, this matter seems to be pressing.”
“Exactly. As you know…”
Before the Instructor could begin his sentence, the mayor raised up his right hand to stop the brawny man from saying anything.
“Is the child really required to attend this meeting?”
Pointing to Junius, the mayor questioned if the boy really needed to stay in the room.
“Of course it is, Your Excellency. Junius here was one of the people who encountered the Kshatriya firsthand. He had even heard him speak.”
Tilting his head in admiration, the mayor leaned back onto his chair. From what he had heard from Lewis, the Frie Clan convoy had encountered the Black Masks, consisting of over a hundred Dalits, five Vaishyas, and a Kshatriya. To tell the truth, even he was unsure if the waypoint was capable of handling an attack force of that scale. And yet, the convoy somehow managed to force the Black Masks to retreat.
“Fine, the boy can stay.”
“It’s alright, Your Excellency, Junius here will be joining your office soon so he won’t be an outsider.”
“Is that so? What will he be doing?”
“He will be training to be a constable your excellency. I believe you have received a letter from our clan’s First Elder regarding this matter.”
“Right! Right! My apologies, it’s just that there have been so many issues with the waypoint lately that it must have slipped my mind.”
Rubbing the temples of his head, the mayor apologised to the Instructor.
“Another reason you have brought the child here is for me to test him, am I right?”
Hitting the nail on the head, the mayor accurately guessed the reason for Junius’ presence.
“That’s right, I hope that Your Excellency could personally evaluate my apprentice here. I’m absolutely certain that he will become a valuable asset to the waypoint.”
At this point, the Instructor shot a menacing glare at Lewis. Feeling pressured, the pudgy man smiled wryly and reached for a brown document that had been collecting dust at one corner of the mayor’s desk. Yesterday, the Instructor had passed the file containing every single detail of Junius to Lewis. The constable captain had wanted to give the document immediately to the mayor, but he didn’t have the heart to bring up such a matter when his superior was slogged with work.
Hence, the file had been just sitting on the desk since Lewis arrived in the office in the morning.
“Hmmm, says here that the boy is only fourteen years old and is already a Rank 11 Spirit Apostle?! Proficient in hand-to-hand combat and specialises in swordplay! Wow, your apprentice is quite talented.”
In the current Terre continent, a regular Spirit User who cultivates can reach the Spirit Apostle realm when they are twenty years old if they were fast. Due to the decree by the emperor, only when a child is ten years old, can they undergo the Spirit Awakening ceremony. Hence, everyone in the empire had the same starting point, even for the royalty.
Naturally, many factors contributed to fast cultivation. The quality of the Spirit, for instance, is a significant factor. For Spirit Users like Shin, whose Spirit was baptised by a natural phenomenon, their cultivation path will be much smoother than a regular Spirit User. Another factor was the resources poured into training the Spirit User. A top clan like the Frie Clan would typically be more well-equipped to train talent as compared to a third-rate clan.
And this showed with Junius. Countless hours of guidance and resources were poured into training Junius. Thankfully, he had the work ethic to match. Hence, he was able to reach the Spirit Apostle realm when he was fourteen compared to the average age of twenty.
“And his Spirit is… T-the Azure Water Blade?”
The mayor’s drowsy eyes sprung back into life as his initial sleepiness had been washed away. The Frie Clan was notorious for their fire elemental Spirits. Having a pupil with a water elemental Spirit was highly irregular for the Frie Clan.
“Junius is an orphan that we had picked up.”
“An orphan… Ahahaha… I see… I see…”
Closing his eye while laughing bitterly, the mayor gave a sardonic grin. From the Instructor’s words, he had been able to deduce certain matters. But of course, he wouldn’t be so tactless to voice his thoughts out.
“From his particulars, he could easily get a job anywhere in the empire. After all, who would turn away such a talented child? To be completely honest, I’m not even sure if I need to test him. But we must follow procedures. I will test him personally after our talks.”
“Your generosity is much appreciated, Your Excellency.”
Clearing his throat, the mayor decided not to overthink the matter and continue his talks.
“Now onto the matter at hand… Who is this Allfather?”