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Chronicles of Primordial Wars

Chapter 32 - Path of Glory

Translated by Lesyt Team: Sunyancai
Edited by Ilesyt


Early the next morning, Shao Xuan tied those animal skin bags, filled with gravel, to himself, and headed to the training ground with Caesar.

In the past when Shao Xuan had not awakened yet, he would often feel worried about being hurt, or even being killed by mistake if he did not pay enough attention to the surroundings. Now he was much more emboldened because his body could endure more damage or wounds.

People in the tribe did not know many moves or forms. All they could do was imagine the existence of a certain game and react based on its habits.

Some warrior would just treat the cliff as some kind of animal, and then hit the cliff hard and strong. Because of that, one should not be surprised when seeing a gust of wind carrying sand and stones in the mountain. That was merely some warrior practicing his punches.

Just like Shao Xuan saw at the Shaman’s place the other night, kids like Mao could break normal stone plates.

After Shao Xuan arrived at the training ground, he picked out a mountain and began to run from the mountain foot to the top with stones carried on his shoulder. While running, he could see which part of the mountain consisted of fine stones, so that he could go dig or carve them out.

“Fortunately I have such a special ability.” Shao Xuan said as he saw the different shades’ of grey in his sight.

Compared with totem power, the other ability in his body had no doubt helped him save a lot more time and effort.

Shao Xuan could not punch out mid-level or mid-upper-level stones. His hands would be the ones hurting if he punched the stones with his bare hands.

After carving out the stone he had chosen, Shao Xuan looked up in the sky and realized it was almost noon. Shao Xuan carried the stone and headed back. He ate lunch back in his place, and then headed for old Ke’s house with the stone he carved out in the morning.

Shao Xuan had arranged every afternoon for learning stone crafting.

The stoneware might look simple, but it was more than just hitting on them.

“First of all, you need to know how to identify the different qualities of the stones. Even with the same hardness, the way of striking could be different when it comes to different stone cores.” Old Ke said as he took out two stone cores of the same grade.

Shao Xuan saw that old Ke directly carved off stone flakes from one stone core, while he processed another with heat and cold. Old Ke explained the changes of color, and the cooling time of quite a few different kinds of stones to Shao Xuan in detail.

Some stones would change their color and quality after being heated up, while some stones would only change the quality. Some of the stones would not have any reaction during the process of heating. Sometimes temperature must be strictly controlled when heating up stones. One needed to know when was the best time for carving and at what temperature the carving wasn’t suitable. As for the temperature, one could only rely on their feelings and experiences, since there was no sophisticated instrument that could be used for measuring.

For instance, old Ke could tell which stone core was hotter with a single touch, when the difference seemed to be undetectable for Shao Xuan.

Different stones had different reactions on temperature so they have to be heated up with different periods of time. Also the cooling times and their reactions all varied.

Old Ke took one of the two stone cores earlier and started to heat it up above the fire. He held a stone stick in each hand and used the sticks to hold the stone core in the middle.

The fire burnt strongly as if it was trying to dry the surrounding people. One would be sweaty after just a short time by the fire. On old Ke’s face there were lots of sweat stains, but his hands were quite steady, and he was quick and nimble when he turned the stone core.

About half an hour later, the stone core above the fire turned from pale gray to brownish red. Then old Ke took it away from fire. However, he did not start the carving right away, but waited until it cooled down so that the brownish red faded to some extent.

The stone flakes that were carved away, were in almost the same thickness, regardless of their shape!

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What kind of crafting ability could achieve that?!

At least in the conception of Shao Xuan from his former life, that could not be realized without advanced cutting machine.

The so called “Ideal crafting” was an extremely complicated process, and people who did not follow this path would never be able to imagine it.

Practice came right after the theory. Shao Xuan had been practicing carving off stone flakes for most of the afternoon.

“There’s so much waste. Do it again!” 

“What the hell are you carving off? Do it again!”

“Bad control on your strength as you swing the hammer! Do it again!”

“Hold it! Who taught you to carve this kind of stone directly? Have you had too much fish?! Heat it up before you do it again!!”

Old Ke’s neighbors all realized that recently old Ke became more hot-tempered. They all sighed and shook their heads when they talked about Shao Xuan, “Such a poor boy, Ah-Xuan!”

In fact, the situation inside the room was not as miserable as people imagined.

Old Ke had a vicious mouth, but he was very patient when teaching Shao Xuan his skills. Also, he was never stingy with stone cores.

For a single afternoon, Shao Xuan had used five stone cores. Aside from the one that he brought, the other four all came from old Ke’s own stash. They were all of fine quality, so Shao Xuan even felt a little extravagant that he used such fine stones for practicing. Although old Ke didn’t mind it, but Shao Xuan himself felt a little ashamed.

Every day when he returned from old Ke’s place to his own cabin, Shao Xuan would feel sourness and stabbing pain all over his body. The pain in his muscles grew more and more intense, and it was hard for him just to set up a stone pot and light the fire. Especially the part between his thumb and index finger hurt even more with burning pain. He tried a few times before he could successfully set up the pot.

Something good must be thoroughly tempered. Shao Xuan felt that it was not the stone cores that got hammered, but himself. However, at night he slept safe and sound. And after a night’s recover, he would feel refreshed in the morning, as if the pain in the muscles was nothing but an illusion.

He did not know whether it was because of the totem power, or because of the other ability in his body.

Early the next morning, Shao Xuan planned to go to the training ground like normal. Yesterday he had found a place where there were quite a few fine stones. He could carve some stone cores out for practicing, so that old Ke could save his own. He would hate to waste too many of old Ke’s stones.

As he was walking, Shao Xuan realized that there was something irregular. People were not so active normally, but this morning, almost all of them got up early, and they were moving in the same direction.

After thinking for a bit, Shao Xuan suddenly tapped on his forehead.

He almost forgot that today was the day that Lang Ga and the others went out for the hunting mission!

Shao Xuan changed his direction and joined the stream of people together with Caesar.

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There was a path from the mountain foot to the mountaintop, which was almost a straight up path. It was higher than the other places in the surroundings and no one would build a house there. Hunting teams would walk on that path when they took off, as well as when they returned, so they would not interfere the other residents of the tribe.

As time went by, the path was given another special meaning. People in the tribe called it the “Path of Glory”.

The tribesmen had complicated emotions as if they were seeing troops off before they went to war. Pride, gloom, and hope. They did now know whether their families would remain intact when the hunting team returned. They did not know whether their families would bring back enough food when the hunting team returned.

Most of the people gathering along the Path of Glory were relatives of the warriors that were going on the mission. And they varied from kids to eldely. When the hunting team returns, the same people would gather here again to greet them back. Of course they would have different feelings that time.

However, aside from seeing off and welcoming back the hunting teams, to those warriors in the hunting team, there was another meaning for this path. That was a confirmation and acknowledgement of their personal strength. If Shao Xuan could summarize based on his understanding, the path would be a “Pride Road” to many of the warriors.

After the end of a hunting mission, it was absolutely clear who gets how much food. It was like an open chart for one’s processions. The wealthy people would have no lack of reputation, status and women. Those were all worthy of flaunting.

“Here they come!” someone shouted out.

Shao Xuan looked at that direction.

There were about two hundred people walking down the mountain. At the very front was the leader of the hunting team that Shao Xuan recognized from the ritual ceremony that night. Not only the leader, Shao Xuan had seen the ones following him before. They were dancing by the fire pit.

All people walking down the mountain had a feeling of generals at war, regardless of their expressions. Some were smiling and some were quite serious.

At the rear of the team among all tall and strong warriors, those few kids with limited height were pretty obvious and easily noticed. The Chief’s first grandson, Mao, was also among them. Fei, who had showed off his ability in front of Shao Xuan was also in the team.

“Hey, who are those kids?”

“They surely are strong and skillful since they can go on the first hunting mission.”

“Those are the top warriors from the newly-awakened warriors this year.”

“Hey, is that Mao? He deserves to be the first grandson of our Chief!”

People were discussing heatedly.

Sai’s father pointed out Fei and other kids in the troops and said to Sai, “Look for yourself! You are almost the same age, and you awakened with them in the same year. Now they are in the first hunting mission already, and you? Where are you now?”

Sai apparently was not convinced by his father’s judgement, “I can do the same if you lived up in the mountain!”

Sai’s father immediately was speechless, and he slapped his son’s face without any more words.

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