After turning 6 years old, there was always strange inscriptions appearing in Guo 12th’s mind along with a strange sound resonating within his ear. The strange sound has caused Guo 12th to have trouble sleeping every night. However, to Guo 12th’s surprise, it never affected his body’s mental state. Guo 12th decided to ignore the sound. And as time passed, he even started to chant along with the sound in his mind.
He has chanted for 2 years before the sound grew fainter. Even though the sound has become faint, he has already grown accustumed to the it so he continued to chant through the nights without any problem. The next morning after chanting, he would always feel energized. Like an addiction, he would feel uncomfortable if he did not chant. He even began to chant without realizing it himself whenever he had free time.
When the sound and inscriptions completely disappeared, Guo 12th was 8 years old. On that night he laid on his bed and continued to chant the words out of habit. There was a total of 167 words and 167 pronunciations. As he continued chanting, he suddenly felt his mind ripping, it was very painful and a massive surge of memory entered his mind. Afterwards, Guo 12th immediately lost conciousness.
It felt like a strange and bizarre dream.
Guo 12th woke up early the next morning. He yawned, stretched, sat up on his bed and began to look around.
Guo 12th was not himself anymore, although his appearance was the same. He clearly understood that he was not himself, he has successfully reincarnated. As the passage of souls required an extremely strong soul, the inscriptions and sound from his mind actually helped cultivate and strengthen his soul.
Guo 12th was overjoyed because it was the second time he has successfully reincarnated. His original soul did not disappear. It was like receiving a precious treasure when he successfully reincarnated the first time, because of it he has lived a long and unique life. That road was full of difficulties, just like a pawn crossing the river. If he failed, everything would for naught.
[t/n] Pawn crossing over the river is a term used in a chinese board game similar to chess.
At the age of 8, Guo 12th did not understand much about his own world. He could only recall that he had a father, a mother, and some brothers and sisters. He was the 12th child of the family, and his last name is Guo. His father have 6 wives and 17 children. He has only been to the small courtyard and the house his parents lived in. Therefore Guo 12th did not know much about the world because he has never even stepped outside his house before.
He carefully observed his room in detail. It was very simple, it had wooden floors, a low bed, and rough sheets. There was a small table with a copper pot, a clay bowl, and also an oil lamp. Besides these items, there was nothing more.
Thinking with his past memories, Guo 12th was shocked. It seemed that this was not the original world he was from. Even though the writing seemed to be traditional Chinese characters, looking at the clothes he was wearing, it looked like a costume from the past. He wondered if he had reincarnated to ancient times, but which dynasty could this be?
Guo 12th quickly calmed down. Since this was his second successful reincarnation, he has gained patience and had confidence from his past experience that he could survive in this world. Guo 12th did not care where he was going to be reincarnated, he only cared whether or not his soul could be awakened with the reincarnation. Since the the reincarnatation succeeded, he could face any challenges.
“12th! 12th! Wake up!”
Guo 12th opened the door and saw a young boy standing outside. He said, “6th Brother, I am awake.”
Guo 6th said, “After breakfast, father will send you to the ancestral temple for a test.”
Guo 12th asked curiously, “Test? What test?”
Guo 6th smiled and said, “Don’t worry about it. You wouldn’t understand even if I told you.”
When eating breakfast, Guo 12th experienced what having a big family was like. There was over 30 people in the room, mostly children. A small table with soup and bread was placed infront of everyone. An old man with strange patterns on his face and arms was responsible for serving the soup and bread. If anyone wanted more, with a shout, the old man will give them more.
Guo 12th was never a curious boy, but now after the reincarnation with an awakened soul he wanted to know more about everything. He quietly asks, “6th brother, Uncle Puer… what are those patterns on his body, Oh! those patterns are moving!”
Guo 6th continued to eat while vaguely saying, “He is a Fu Warrior. You are still young…you will understand when you get older.”
“6th brother, what is a Fu Warrior?”
Guo 6th drank his soup and said, “12th, what is wrong with you today? You usually act like a carefree chicken… Uncle Puer is a stray Fu Warrior who was taken in by our father to handle small chores.”
Guo 12th realized that he had wasted his last 8 years because he knew nothing about this world. But upon further review, there was no way for him to know about the outside world because he was always focused on the inscriptions and sounds in his mind. It is actually extraordinary for an 8 year old to cultivate and strengthen his soul to the point where the soul awakens with memories attached.
Guo 12th thought this world is going to be interesting.
After breakfast, Puer came up to Guo 12th and said, “12th, Master asked me to take you to the ancestral temple.” Afterwards, he also called Guo 10th and 13th Guo. Guo 12th learned that his 11th brother has died at the age of 3.
With three 8-year-old children, Puer led them into the Guo ancestral temple.
The Guo ancestral temple is a castle that was build with rectangular shaped stones. Guo 12th found it strange that there were patterns on the stones. The patterns were very strange, they looked like both characters and pictures and they were similar to the ones on Puer’s body.
Handrails were built on the 6 foot wall, every dozen or so meter there were towers connected. How could this be considered a temple? It was more like a stronghold. Guo 12th wondered why this castle-liked temple was build. Was the world outside not peaceful?
He was not scared of death, Guo 12th have lived through war. In his first life, he was a monk who was very well-versed in Buddhist teachings. By chance he stumbled upon the scriptures for cultivating the soul thus learning it. In his first reincarnation, he was born as a farmer living through extreme poverty. He later joined the military and led his own unit. After retiring due to injuries, he opened a small shop with the help of a friend and maintained livelihood. He had gotten married, but did not have any children. Later on, he learned that with soul cultivation he never bear any children.
From a soldier’s perspective, the castle like temple was built perfectly with no weaknesses. The only thing that confused him was how the design of the temple seemed a bit too advanced for its time.
As Guo 12th’s mind was wandering around, he followed Puer and entered the temple gates. There was a large open space inside with around a hundred children, who were also around 8 years old. They were all being divided into groups of 10. Puer appeared to be familiar with the procedures that were going on, he led the 3 children into a group and said, “You guys line up here and come out when the test is done. I will be waiting outside.” Then he turned around and left as if he was forbidden to stay any longer.
Guo 10th and 13th Guo laughed and talked to each other, but they ignored Guo 12th.
Guo 12th was not interested in their childish chat and he was delighted that he was not disturbed. He was observing his surroundings and from the small matters, he would make assumptions. For example, all the adults here were sturdy and had a murderous aura. From a former soldier’s point of view, he could tell that these people have experience in killing either people or monstrous beasts, or else they could not let out such a strong murderous aura.
Unfortunately, Guo 12th did not have any useful memories of the past 8 years, and most of the time was spent on food, he could even be considered a big eater. The rules of the Guo Clan did not seem normal. When a child reached 5 years old, they would have to live in isolation, and be allowed out when it was time to eat. It was rare for the child to see their parents, only at the beginning of the month would they be allowed to see them.
Laundry was scheduled to be taken cared of and the children did not have to work at all. To Guo 12th, it felt like a boarding school from his previous life, minus the learning, it was similar to how small animals were bred in captivity.
More than 10 Elders from the Guo Clan entered and a few stayed outside, 3 of which were Fu Warriors with their bodies covered in patterns. They were all quite old, Guo 12th predicted that the Fu Warrior Elders were about 60 years old.
There was no announcement to start, but the children up front already started the test.
Guo 12th got on his tiptoes and tried to see up ahead, he wanted to see what was being tested. Yet, he could not see anything because the children in front of him completely blocked his view. The children did not care about the test at all, they laughed and giggled while causing a ruckus. But Guo 12th was not a child, he knew the Guo clan must have a reason for all the tests, it should even be an important event.
“What is the purpose of this test?”
Guo 12th could not resist it anymore, he asked Guo 10th, but Guo 10th ignored him and turned around to talk to someone else. An unfamiliar child said, “My uncle said this is a test of potential…but, I don’t know what the potential is.”
Guo 12th said, “My name is Guo 12th. What is your name?”
“I am Guo Egg!”
Guo 12th secretly shook his head. That name really made people speechless, it seemed people here did not care about names. He said, “Guo Egg, thank you.”
Guo Eggy was very tiny, he looked like a child who was only 6 or 7 years old. After hearing Guo 12th’s thankfulness, he was extremely happy and said, “Guo 12th, my uncle said that if you have potential, the clan will train you and even let you go outside…but, I don’t want to go outside! If you get sent out…you wouldn’t be able to see your parents again.” He really did not understand the meaning of potential.
Guo 12th was in the 4th group. The pacing of the test was not too slow, and after about 2 hours, it was his group’s turn.
The test is very simple, without the child doing anything, an object the size of a lighter was placed on their forehead, then after a few words, they would wait for 2 minutes and it was done.
Guo 12th focused on the Elder who was administering the test.
The man’s face was very thin, had a snow-white goat beard which seemed to be well groomed, and a pair of slender eyes filled with wisdom. His eyebrows were also white. He wore a long robe which attracted Guo 12th’s attention. It was not made of hemp, cotton, or silk. It had a light green color decorated with patterns. As Guo 12th looked carefully, he discovered that the patterns looked similar to the patterns on the temple’s stone wall. A belt the width of a palm had rectangular-shaped objects hanging on it. Guo 12th did not clearly see what those objects were.
Guo 12th continued thinking. In reality he was not just a simple 8 year old child, he knew a lot of things. But this world was just too strange to him. Who were Fu Warriors? What is the purpose for these potential test? What is the difference between this world and his previous one? He did not know. The previous time, he reincarnated into the same world so he could easily fit in. This time was different, the world felt strange to him.
“Child, what is your name?”
The green-robe Elder administering the test kindly asks.
To the side, there was someone in charge of recording. The green-robe Elder said, “Stand still with your eyes looking at me.” He gently touched his waist with a finger and a rectangular-shaped object appeared in his hand. He immediately placed the object on Guo 12th’s forehead and said, “Stare and look…Ahem, not with your eyes but with the strength of your mind.”
Guo 12th thought to himself, “How many children can understand what you just said?” He simply closed his eyes and focused his mind on his forehead.
All of a sudden, he saw pieces of complex patterns on the rectangular shaped object. Looking at the patterns, they seemed smooth. He was very surprised, was there eyes on his forehead?
The green-robe Elder suddenly enlarged his eyes when he saw the object on Guo 12th’s head flashed with a red glow. He was delighted and said, “Ah! FuZhou potential! Someone have FuZhou potential!”
“Quick! Bring Elder Chen here! Tell him we found a child with FuZhou potential.”
Guo 12th was fascinated by the object on his head. It was beautifully crafted and made him feel comfortable. All of a sudden he began to understand what that object was, it had the power of the soul. The object on his head enabled him to see through the soul.
“All set, child, open your eyes.”
The object on this forehead disappeared. Guo 12th opened his eyes and noticed that the green-robe Elder was staring at him kindly, and then Guo 12th asks. “Grandpa, is the test done?”
The Elder pleasantly said, “Guo 12th, you can call me Grandpa Hong, stay with me for now.” He then asked one of the Fu Warriors, “Is Elder Chen here yet?”
The Fu Warrior answered respectfully: “Already sent out a letter, he should be here soon.”
The Elder nodded, and proceeded to the next child, “Child, what is your name?”
The Elder placed that object on Guo 10th’s forehead and repeated the process. This time, the object flickered with a light yellow glow instead of a flashing red glow. The Elder said with a bit of disappointment,“You have warrior potential.” The Fu Warrior then handed Guo 10th a token and said, “Take this back home and show it to your family.”
The next one to take the test was Guo Egg, he also have warrior potential. However, 13th Guo did not have any potential so he did not receive any token.
Guo 12th waited patiently by the side. He noticed that most of the children had warrior potential, and only a few either had Zhou potential or Fu potential. For now, he was the only one with FuZhou potential.
Even though he did not understand what FuZhou potential was, he knew that it should not be ordinary since the Elder only requested him to follow along.
About half of the children remained by noon, they were taken to have lunch. The Elder took Guo 12th to a restaurant outside the ancestral temple. Inside the restaurant, Guo 12th met the Patriarch of the Guo Clan, he was a fat old man with an amiable smile.
The Guo Clan was recognized as the second largest clan around, it consisted of millions of people. The main branch alone had 200,000 people. Being the Patriarch of the Guo Clan, he possessed a lot of influence. Having this title allowed the Patriarch to accompany the Elder.
The Patriarch was extremely happy because a child with FuZhou potential belonged to the Guo Clan. The Patriarch said with smile, “It’s all thanks to Elder Hong Chang Feng that our Guo Clan can produce a FuZhou Knight.”
Elder Hong said with a laugh, “It is not due to me, if he did not have potential then I cannot do anything to help.”
Guo 12th kept on eating without saying a single word. He was constantly wondering what a FuZhou Knight was, are they exorcists? They shouldn’t be…then what is it? He was confused and had the impression that this world was just too strange.
The food was very simple. A big plate of unfamiliar meat with a few unknown wild vegatables mixed in, which was delicious. In addition, there was another pot of roasted meat, sliced into big pieces. And a bamboo basket with a lot of steamed buns.
12th realized that his body had a very big appetite. He was only half full after eating 10 steamed buns, with a few pieces of meat. He was surprised that as an 8 year old child, he is eating more than ever compared to his previous life.
Elder Hong was eating even more, he ate huge pieces of meat and before he even swallowed them he was already getting ready to grab another piece. What was even stranger was the way the Elder ate the steamed buns, he would grab a bunch at once, sqeeze them together and stuff it all into his mouth.
By the time Guo 12th finished the food which can feed 17 people, he was finally satisfied. He just quietly listened to what the Patriarch and Elder Hong had to discuss. The two men ate and talked at the same time and finished everything on the table. After everything was gone, the server brought out a copper bowl filled with water for everyone to clean up.
The test continued until the evening. Guo 12th was the only child who had FuZhou potential. Out of the over 100 children, only 60% had warrior potential, 8% had Zhou Knight potential, 3% had Fu Knight potential and the rest did not have any potential. Since there was a child with FuZhou potential Elder Hong was satisfied.
At this time another Elder arrived, it was Elder Chen who came to give Guo 12th another exam to confirm his FuZhou potential. Elder Chen was also extremely delighted after the exam. Guo 12th paid extra attention towards Elder Chen because Elder Chen seemed to be a highly esteemed figure who also had Fu Warrior symbols on his body and the aura that Elder Chen released was on a different level compared to the Fu Warriors from the Guo Clan.
Elder Chen began to leave after the exam, Elder Hong quickly ordered Guo 12th to follow him. The 4 children with Fu Knight potential and the 9 children with Zhou Knight potential also followed along.
Every child was accompanied by a Fu Warrior, while Guo 12th was directly following Elder Chen.
Elder Chen’s name was Chen Chun Zhai, he was already 80 years old. He advanced to FuZhou Master from FuZhou Knight at the age of 47. After becoming a FuZhou Master, Elder Chen became even more influential. In this world FuZhou Masters were held in extremely high regards, they were a high existence in this world. FuZhou Masters were powerful because they had the strength to move the world!
From Guo 12th’s perspective, Elder Chen was at most 50 years old, and seemed younger than Elder Hong, but from their interaction it was clear that Elder Hong treated Elder Chen with a higher level of respect.
Elder Chen had a very dignified look. He had a composed rectangular face, tall nose, deep set eyes, a set of thick black eyebrows, and a loud and clear voice. His posture was similar to a well trained soldier.
Guo 12th was still very calm and silent, causing Elder Chen to be impressed and satisfied. An average child would not be as calm and patient as Guo 12th. Elder Chen also noticed how Guo 12th did not have any traces of fear in his eyes which was an essential quality required to become a FuZhou Knight.
“Guo 12th, the Patriarch of your clan has already informed your family of what happened, you just need to follow me,” Elder Chen said.
Guo 12th says,”Ok, thankyou Grandpa Chen, thankyou Grandpa Hong.”
Elder Hong gently smiles and says, “It is rare to see a child being so respectful.”
Elder Chen then says, “Being respectful is good, but 12th you have FuZhou potential so you do not always have to be so respectful. Once you advance into a FuZhou Knight you have to understand that your status is different from others, you will only have to be respectful towards a few people.”
Elder Hong shook his head and said,” Elder Chen he is just a child you do not have to …”
Elder Chen glared at Elder Hong and said,”Did I say anything wrong?”
Elder Hong helplessly said,”Of course not, you are correct FuZhou Master.”
Elder Chen was purposely acting arrogant, he said, “Good then, go take care of the children.”
A quick thinking Fu Warrior quickly gathered some companions and took the children with them.
Everyone was led towards the reception area, at first Guo 12th imagined it was going to be a luxurious place, but when he arrived he discovered that the area was not the least bit luxurious, the only compliment Guo 12th could give was how the area was so spacious. There were huge wooden tables, the floor was also made of wood and there were torches lid up on the walls. The food consisted of large portions of meat, bread, soup, and rice.
In the reception area, for the first time since Guo 12th’s soul awakened he met his parents of this world. His father was named Guo Liang, he had 6 wives and Guo 12th’s birth mother is Li Guo. In this world, unless the women can become Fu Fighters, their status will be low. The only purpose females had in this world was to give birth, and until they have given birth they would not be recognized within the family.
[t/n] I used the term Fu Fighters to group Fu Warriors, Zhou Knights, Fu Knights and FuZhou Knights together.
Guo 12th did not have any feelings towards his parents because his soul have just been reincarnated after the soul awakening. Even before the soul awakened Guo 12th has been living independently ever since he was 5 years old, it would have been difficult for them to become fond of each other.
Elder Chen noticed that Guo Liang was very excited of his son having FuZhou potential,meaning the status of his family will rise. Even though Guo Liang could not remember how Guo 12th looked like, it did not ruin his happy mood.
Guo 12th sat next to Chen Chun Zhai looking at the food in front of him. He sighed to himself while looking because his body could not resist the smell of the food and his mouth was already beginning to water.
Chen Chun Zhai asks, “12th are you hungry?”
Guo 12th nods and say,”Yes, Grandpa Chen.”
Chen Chun Zhai says, “Then you should eat, you do not have to mind anyone here, when you begin your FuZhou training you are going to have to eat a lot more and not only these simple dishes, but delicious dishes too.”
Guo 12th did not know what to say, but his body once again could not resist the food.
In his former life, Guo 12th would sometimes go for many days without eating anything except trash, but now in his current body it was impossible to resist the hunger.
Without a care on the world, Guo 12th ran up to the food and began stuffing it in his mouth, then all of sudden a voice which sounded like thunder can be heard, causing Guo 12th to almost dropped his piece of meat. He became disgruntled wondering why a person needed to be so loud.
A Fu Warrior rushes in and quickly kneels down infront of the Patriarch screaming like thunder,”Oh Ah! Patriarch! Bad news!.”
That thunderous phrase,”Oh Ah!” has caused Guo 12th to drop his food, the voice was just too terrifying.
With Elder Chen present, the Patriarch quickly tries to control the situation,”Thunderstorm! Why are you being so loud, What’s wrong?”
At this moment, Guo 12th was able to recognize the Patriarch’s strengths. The Patriarch was grand and resembled an imposing figure. The reception area, which a few moments ago was noisy and bustling suddenly became quiet and everyone got out of the way. The only noise that can be heard was the crackling sound of the torches.