Finally edited! Edited by Shae_1812.
The world is an extremely vast place where demonic beasts, sacred creatures, martial cultivators, devils, heroes as well as villains share the vast lands and oceans.
This particular world is divided into 5 large continents, though only two of these have been formalized as countries. These could be said as countries since at least these are in the domain of the human race, as compared to the other continents that belong to beasts and devils. These remaining continents have been unanimously declared as forbidden because if any human would dare to enter these continents, they would never be seen again.
Even though humans are not a hegemony in this world and are constantly struggling against beasts and devils, they have a large amount of land territory under their control. The human race passed through many eras such as the Era of Martial Emperors, the Age of Righteous Rulers, the Dark Ages, and now the sects have begun a New Age, bringing a delicate balance amongst all the races of this world.
In both the continents of the human race, there are 10 empires, of which for every two empires a great sect is responsible for their order and development. Of course, some sects are responsible for more than two empires, as is the case of the famous Celestial Sword sect which has at least 4 empires under its power. The second continent has the Arcane Magus Sect which also has 4 empires in their power. The two continents are separated by a great sea known as the Sea of Blood, named so because of the countless wars and deaths that occurred there over the passage of time.
While the balance between the races lasted, some sages predicted that there would be another great war between the races. Anticipating this, all the sects began a large-scale quest, promoting evidence for the entrance of new disciples.
It is usually the wandering geniuses and cultivators who go in search of the sects to enter and be part of the martial world elites, but because of the foresight of the group of sages, the sects became anxious and found it better to increase their power soon, before it was too late.
The Elders of the sects very well remembered how terrible the war between the races was during the Dark Ages; the blood, death, and sacrifice of many humans who were the pillars of society! Rivers of blood streamed down the scorched earth and screams echoed all over the place. Even the women stopped having children due to the pervading negative energy in the environment!
In that Dark Age, the human race was almost extinct!
Of course, every-time humanity comes across such Dark Ages, Heroes are always born! Heroes who are blessed directly by the Heavens itself! These brave heroes emerged from the chaos and fought the other races that hunted the humans, thus winning the war. They brought about a certain stability and also at the same time established these current sects. Some sects had more than one hero as their founder, but all the sects were created to be the pillars for humanity such that they would be able to sustain during such a crisis in the future.
This happened hundreds of years ago and now all the heroes are already dead, humanity does not even remember them, and the sects only keep the teachings of the heroes. As predicted that a new war could be coming next, the sects are now hunting for new talents in all the lands from the great imperial capital to the humblest of villages. They are also not distinguishing the status of an important prince from a poor beggar for participating in the selection of the sect.
These sects have sent a group composed of an elder in the Rising Soul Realms, accompanied by 5 disciples in Aurore Core Realms, including the assistance of 10 Realms Foundation Cultivators and 20 top-level Qi Realms cultivators!
Each such group became responsible for a region dividing into up to 8 regions:
1: North, 2: South, 3: East, 4: West, 5: Extreme-north, 6: Desert (where the nomads of sand live), 7: The Prairies and 8: The Oceanic Islands.
As of now, a group of the Celestial Sword sect entered the unnamed village number 10, located in the hot southern region of the Qin Empire, shocking the ignorant and gullible villagers, who felt as though a deity had come to their humble village.
"I do not understand! Why does Elder Han want us to make a selection in these poor villages forgotten by God?", complained a disciple of the Aurore Core Realms as he organized the precious items needed for the magical formations of protection during the Selection process. "It must have been because of the news that Elder San from the golden faction of our sect found some talents within humble villages there in the northern region," said an Aurore Core Realms cultivator surnamed Lin.
The two were wearing purple robes symbolizing their status as inner disciples of the Celestial Sword sect. On their clothes was a brooch made of a mysterious metal that had the design of a heron with closed wings. In the Celestial Sword sect, the heron is the symbol of the sect, as legend has it that it was a sacred heron that taught the great hero and founder of the sect, Su Hie, about the art of the sword.
"But that's a lucky 1 in a million! We would have more chances if we went to the cities with strong trade or the cities closest to the capital!", the disciple of the Aurore Core Realms surnamed Wan continued to complain. "Elder San has been the only one to earn double the reward for finding talent in desolate villages, so Elder Han is feeling envious", said disciple Lin with a very shrewd smile.
Elder Han belongs to the Blue Fire faction and Elder San belongs to the Golden faction. Both factions have a lot of friction within the Celestial Sword sect and so the two always contend for everything from the training ground to great achievements in order to contribute to the growth of the sect.
While the two disciples with others of the Aurore Core Realms were carefully organizing test items within the formations, the disciples of Foundation Realms were organizing the camp and erecting several tents that were made of precious materials. The tents served to hide the tests from public eye. In addition to providing shelter to the disciples of the Celestial Sword Sect, there was also a tent that was erected for future disciples who cleared the test.
By now the Qi Refinement Realms disciples were using their mana to spread their voices all over the streets of the village, informing the villagers of Celestial Sword sect's great plan for recruitment. While doing these they also made purchases and exchanges with some local farmers and hunters to secure food for the next 3 days.
This unnamed village numbered 19 is a central village. It has easy access to small villages and even has a small trade that makes it look a bit more prosperous than other humble villages. In this commercial trade area, there was a small well-known restaurant popular for its good food and of course the good barley tea.
Behind this restaurant were two boys of roughly around 8 years old. They had a very thin face and bodies and had so much grime on their body that one cannot make out if they were ugly or beautiful! Their hair was tangled and covered in dirt as well. As of now, the two boys were digging into a wooden barrel where the restaurant's garbage was dumped before it was burned or fed to the pigs.
"I found a piece of burnt bread and some bones with meat on it! And you? What did you find?", asked the taller boy with his voice full of excitement and delight because his find meant that they wouldn't have to starve today! "I found some boiled eggs that have burnt parts and two onions that are half-withered!", replied the smaller boy in an equally excited voice.
"Hey! You beggars! Stop throwing garbage on the floor! You're polluting the boss's property!", shouted the young kitchen assistant as he opened the door and saw the two dirty little boys rummaging through the garbage and scattering it on the floor! Both the boys ran without even looking back passing quickly between the tightly packed commercial stalls and on the way getting shouts from the startled merchants and women shopping there. When the people realized that they were two little ragged and malnourished boys running in such poor states, they just nodded and sighed as it was indeed a sad sight for them!
"Hey, isn't that the son of the Song Family?", asked a merchant who recognized one of the children despite their grimy faces. "Yes, it should be the younger son named Song Yan. It's a shame and a pity, what happened to their family!", confirmed an older woman as she shook her head and sighed with pity.
"Why is it a pity?", asked a young man who wore immaculate white robes with a drawing of an egg whose design carries the sword character, he looked like a very refined and civilized young man. Clearly, the villagers and merchants realized that this person was not one of the inhabitants of the nearby villages.
"It was a terrible tragedy! The Song Family had a house on a nearby mountain, which people said was the Song Family's summer home and it was also said that they were from the imperial capital. So, five years ago there was a massive attack of demonic beasts in our region and this Song Family's summer house was destroyed and everyone within died, leaving behind only a 5-year-old small boy! Who knows how he survived?!", said the lady who seemed to feel sorry for the boy. Actually, she was an elderly woman who liked to talk and tell the various "secrets" that people had in the area. In short, a false and disingenuous person who likes to gossip and spread rumors; but the refined boy did not care about this hypocritical attitude and kept talking. "That's very sad, these damn demon beasts! But the Song Family in the capital did not come and get the child? ", he asked.
"This is what makes everyone think that the kid is crazy and that his head was trodden down by some demonic beast that year, which is even more pitiful! Because the Song Family of the capital sent a butler and some servants to the mountain to take the bodies of the dead, or what was left of them. But the five-year-old boy was gone before the servants noticed! The boy disappeared for days and only reappeared when those employees left!", said the woman in surprise, though she could not hide a cheerful smile from telling the famous story of the area. Some close by merchants approached the refined young man and also confirmed the words of the hypocritical lady.
This Song Yan boy had nothing in his possession. All that was valuable was taken away by the employees of the Song Family of the capital, he had only a rusty ring, which he wore with a rope to fasten at the neck. Soon after the departure of the Song Family's envoys from the capital, Song Yan reappeared and became a beggar in the village. He lived near the area where his family was killed, living by eating some plants and animals, and if he couldn't get anything he would come to the commercial area of the village and steal from the wooden casks of restaurants and inns, in search of some food to pass the day.
At first, the people who felt sorry for this little child helped with some clothes and some dry rations so that the child would not starve in winter and die, but there were people who lived complaining about the child, saying that it was a problem of the capital and should not be passed on to the village. This hypocritical lady is part of these people who complain about everything and everyone!
The refined boy only sighed with regret and was still a little curious about this tragedy, but then shook his head and began to use his mana to spread the news of his sect. "The Celestial Sword sect is promoting a great recruitment, starting tomorrow and ending three days later, no matter if you are a beggar, a great heir or even a cripple, anyone between the age 8 years and 20 years can enroll in the big tent which is near the house of the village leader! ", he said using the mana as his voice rang for at least 2 miles away.
Not far from the commercial area, the eyes of two little boys who were dirty beyond recognition shone like stars!
Thanks for reading!
This is my second BL romance on Qidian.
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