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 Season 4

Episode 23

(Sword granting (1)

The woman yelled in cracking hoarse voice dripping with shock. She least expected that Zen would have the patience to withstand her flirtation. And what surprised her more was his thorough resistance and finally she felt powerless in front of him.    

 It was a common sense that Flirtation was a fighting tactic that worked mostly on men at younger age as when they hit puberty they were evidently attracted to the feminine nature the most. And at the moment, seeing this man who was less than 20-year-old and should be the easiest prey of her seduction, brazenly turn down her attempts, made her curious and more determined.     

With this first encounter, the woman, who was in fact the owner of Weapon Pavilion, got a profound impression of Zen. A flame of curiosity was raging in her heart, and this possessed her and pushed her to pursue Zen and find out more about him.    

 "Is it you who want to buy that sword?" inquired the woman, passing a wide inviting smile to him.   

Even though her voice remained broken and hoarse, the whole tone on the contrary was soft and appeasing. No one could deny the gentle and soft feeling that stuck in the heart. "You are right, that is me," Zen replied reverently as he nodded his head.     

"Well..." The woman sighed with hesitation as she held out her hand to start brushing the white tiger's hair. With a polite yet shrewd smile still lingering on her face, she began to approach him. "Didn't Manager Qi tell you? This particular sword is not for sale," she said while gazing into Zen's eyes.     

Zen smiled back with equal politeness and said, "Yes, he did. It is just that the sword attracted me so much that I will be so depressed if I cannot earn it. Do you think you could bend your rule this once and quote a price for it?" He pursued diligently.     

Upon hearing his persistent attempt, the woman burst out into a small shrill laugh. She shook her head expressing her refusal and explained, "This sword is not any common sword on which I could bear to put a tag. It is a combination of the knowledge of Chase's last times on earth. He poured his lifetime's hard work, knowledge and dedication into this sword when making it. And I inherited it because he was my father's close friend.

 And according to his will, I am not allowed to sell it to anyone unless someone would be able to refine it into a fairy weapon, and in that case, the sword could be awarded with no charge at all. So right now, there is no point in mentioning any price if you have no ability to fulfill Chase's last wish."  

After hearing her long speech, a small contemptuous smile appeared on Zen's lips. "What if I possess the ability to refine it into a fairy weapon? Then will you do as you just promised? Will then give it to me for free?" he asked, with a determined and confident light shining in his eyes.     

His confident aura grabbed the elder shopkeeper's attention who had been intently listening to their conversation the entire time. He lifted his head and scoured Zen from top to feet, wondering if he was just exaggerating about his ability or did he really possess such a faculty. From his first impression and glimpse at Zen upon his entrance into the shop, he had the faint feeling that Zen could not possibly be an ordinary person. And right now, he was surprised and amazed more than ever. Even though he had so many questions about Zen, he did not dare to vocalize them because his boss was present in their company. So he lowered his head yet again and waited for their further conversation with full concentration.  

 The woman pulled out a handkerchief from the pouch under her dress and started laughing enchantingly as she covered her mouth with the hankie which had delicately dyed roses all over it. 

"What a funny person you are, Sir. You are not even a weapon refiner, and not to mention you have no fire in your body yet you are confident that you have the ability to refine it. So what instills such confidence in you?" she asked in a rather firm mocking tone.   

When it came to condensing weapons, fire was not the essential element in the whole process. However, it went without saying that anyone who had the ability to condense weapons must be a weapon refiner. From the moment she laid her eyes on Zen, the woman noticed that it was the life vitality that Zen was practicing not the fire. In other words, Zen was not a weapon refiner at the moment. And that was the reason why the woman doubted Zen's ability to refine the sword into a fairy weapon.     

"I am afraid I cannot agree on the point you tried to make," retorted Zen exhuming confidence. "It is true that I have not reached the level of practising fire at the moment. But who said that you have to use fire in your body to refine a weapon? There can be another kind of fire that can be used to refine weapons as well. Am I right?" he asked with a certain degree of arrogance on his face. The woman sighed helplessly at his audacity.     

Zen's confident words intensified her impression that Zen could not be a weapon refiner, or more accurately, she was almost positive that one could not high up to weapon refiner's level at such a young age. She felt Zen was just bluffing and flaunting in front of her as many youth of his age commonly would. Gradually, a strong desire to expose his lie arose in her mind. "Well then, if you are so certain that you could refine a weapon, then show me what you have got."  

Right after saying that, the woman's face instantly turned to firm, serious look as she snapped her fingers. As the loud sound resonated and echoed in the air, the fire that had been blazing wildly in the furnace now began to dwindle. And before anyone could realize what was happening, the fire diminished into a bird-shaped flame and flew out from inside.     

"Fire spirit!"   

 Zen cried in wonder beholding the sight before him. Actually when he entered the room and saw the fire the first time, a strange, odd feeling came across his mind and he felt the fire seemed different than the usual fire. But the idea never occurred to him that it could indeed be a fire spirit.    

 Only very special fire contained a fire spirit in it.     

According to legend, the fire spirit originated in an ancient clan. There was story which said that with the continuous years of disaster and drought, the clan's elder invited a witch to disperse the bad omen that people believed to be the reason of their hardships. And from that time on, they set up a giant furnace and kindled the fire obeying the witch's spell. 

And henceforward, the clan only grew wealthier and stronger, and began to expand their territory. They then became the largest and the most powerful clan in the Eastern Region. And the fire that lit in the furnace had never been extinguished from the first day till this day. It became the most holy and divine symbol in the whole clan which kept their hopes and dreams afloat.   

After the fire had burned for over one thousand years, a living spirit came out of it eventually, and it was never easy for people to see a fire spirit rising from any kind of fire despite of how long time it had burned. There were only a few fire spirits in the whole worldwide. And today, very luckily, they happened to come across one, a beautiful, delicate one.     

Zen remembered the fire of the Earth's core that he absorbed in his body in the past. He believed that the fire had also burned in the cave under the ground for over a thousand years before he took it in at length. But even that fire did not possess the capability to produce a fire spirit.    

As Zen was lost in his line of own thoughts wondering about the fire spirit, the woman broke the silence and resumed speaking, "I don't like my time to be wasted. You better be as strong as you claimed. So now it is your show time." Evidently, her tone carried a hint of mockery and despise.

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