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|Author: Luo Jiang Shen||Original Source: SFACG||Word Count: 3161 characters|
|Translator: Sigma||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 2032 words|
After the ceremony ended, the newly appointed samurai left the main hall with bright faces as they held their certificates. Before leaving with Ashikaga Kiyoshi and the old man, Sakiko had asked Lily to meet her in the evening. As Lily and Nanako were leaving, she was curious and asked, “Oh right, Nanako, what are the Six Swords of the Eastern Nation you mentioned?”
Nanako had a satisfied expression as she perked up and said, “The Eastern Nation’s Six Swords are very famous. They are the top samurai among the younger generation of Kanto!”
“The top samurai of the younger generation?” Lily asked with a deep breath, “who are these six samurai?”
Nanako came to a stop before jumping to turn around, her hands on her waist, as she looked up at Lily. Despite her short stature, her atmosphere was quite daunting, as though she wanted to overwhelm Lily with this topic.
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“The sixth member and the weakest of the Six Swords of the Eastern Nation: Hojo Dijon1, the eldest son of the Hojo Clan’s Head, also known as the strongest warrior of the Hojo Clan!”
“Fifth member: Ashikaga Kiyoshi, the oldest Young Master of the Ashikaga Clan. You’ve just met him.”
“Fourth: Taira Hachirou, the prodigy of the Taira Clan. The one who represents Mikawa Province’s samurai.”
“Third: Itagaki Nobuyoshi, the oldest samurai in the group, a fierce samurai from the Kai Province.”
“Second: Uesugi Rei, the Land of Snow’s Goddess of War that has earned the respect of the entire Eastern Nation. She’s the renowned Blade Maiden of Echigo Province. They say she rides a black steed and killed the Blue Demon with only one slash!”
“And the top samurai is… Minamoto no Shimizu. There’re not many legends about her. We just know that she’s a Sword Maiden, the pride of the Genji Clan in the Eastern Nation, but she rarely appears.”
“Hehe,” looking at Lily’s astounded face, Nanako continued, “So, are you frightened now when you hear their names? Anyway, the two that stand at the top of this generation’s Six Swords are both women, and I heard that they’re extremely glamorous.”
“Oh…” Lily agreed with blurred eyes.
Uesugi Rei, she heard this name again.
She hadn’t expected that the strong, beautiful, yet cold woman who forcefully stole her first kiss without any explanation was one of the Eastern Nation’s Six Swords.
Ranked second, she was even stronger than the Ashikaga Kiyoshi she had seen today. She was the woman who stood at the summit of this generation’s young samurai in the Eastern Nation.
Lily suddenly felt helpless. She thought that if she were stronger, she could get back her dignity; however, it looked like Uesugi Rei was standing and watching her from a tall mountain that was getting farther and farther away. Was it even a mountain that she could reach?!
“Hey, hey! Are you okay? Big-breasted woman!”
“Err… Sorry, I was a little bewildered just now…” Lily didn’t even warn Nanako about calling her big-breasted woman as she was drowning in her wavering thoughts.
‘Whatever the case, the one who forcefully kissed me is the peerless woman standing at the top of the Kanto samurai. Should I consider myself lucky? Hmm…’
Bewildered, Lily comforted herself.
Unconsciously, she stroked her gloss, pink lips with finger, her nipples becoming erect from arousal.2
Lily walked absent-mindedly with Nanako until the two walked out of the inner hall and saw Shiu waiting for them at the gate.
“Master, where should we go now?” Shiu obediently asked.
“Ah, I…” Lily gradually pulled herself together and said, “Ah, I just remembered that I wanted to make a trip over to the shop. You guys just play around here and wait for me.”
“Yes, take your time, master!” Shiu happily received the order, waving her hand with a cat-like smile on her face.
“Play?” Nanako looked at the lush green grass yard.
Lily walked to the islet inside the Dojo where most of the shops were situated. First, she visited the anima containers shop, where she sold all the animas that weren’t reserved for empowering Sakura.
“There are thirty-six rank-one animas. So, eighteen kwan in total,” said the womanish sounding onmyoji wearing a purple fur coat.
Although Lily was a boy who turned into a girl, she didn’t like effeminate men.
Turning into a woman and being effeminate were two completely different stories.
“Thank you,” Lily received the money. She didn’t linger for long, leaving immediately after her business was done.
She went to another shop where precious items were collected. She took out the heirloom, a shiny bead, she had taken from Daidouji.
The shopkeeper was an old man. He observed the item meticulously then took a deep breath. He was quite surprised when he spoke to Lily, “Miss, you’ve just become a samurai and yet you’ve managed to get such a rare item. This is indeed most surprising.”
“Ah no, I’m just lucky,” said Lily, her face turned towards her heaving breasts.
The old man wiped beads of sweat from his forehead and said, “this item is a white jade stone. Although it’s not a real jade, it is a very precious stone due to its unique aura. This white jade stone is top-quality. It is clear and the color is not bad. After so many years, the jade has become even more polished and natural. However, it now contains some vulgar and even resentful spirit, which has greatly destroyed its auspicious aura. However, I guess as you have kept it for quite a long time, it has absorbed your innocence and faint scent. The evil energy is somewhat expelled. So now, it’s worth much more than the time you got it.”
“Oh?” Lily was happy upon hearing the old man’s appraisal. Her red lips parted, letting out white mist, “S- so, how much I can get if I sell it?”
“This lucky and elegant Miss samurai, because this bead has been purified by your innocence, its value has increased significantly. How about it, I’ll buy it one hundred kwan,” The old man’s eyes sparkled as he gestured.
“Ah…” Lily looked somewhat hesitant. One hundred kwan was a big number to her. However, it was an heirloom of the filthy rich Daidouji Clan, yet it was worth only one hundred kwan? It sounded a little cheap. Had she risked her life only for one hundred kwan?
Lily asked again, “Grandpa, I heard that it’s a family heirloom. Shouldn’t it be extremely rare and precious? It should be priceless, no?”
The old man wore a nice face and answered with a smile, “This kind of white jade stone doesn’t have actual function and power, but many families have used it as the symbol of fate and passed it down through generations. To them, it seems to have some special meaning or priceless value as you say. However, to a buyer, if it’s a primary stone or some precious stone passed by the nobilities or officials, it will have a better price. However, this bead has been contaminated by filthy energy and resentment, which has destroyed a lot of its actual value!”
The old man looked pitiful. However, he was looking at Lily with bright eyes. “If you haven’t kept it with you for a long time and used your fresh and pure nature to purify the bead, the price would have been even lower. As you’re from the Genji Dojo, Miss, I’m not going to mistreat you. I’ve offered you the price a little higher than the other shops. It’s because of your excellent appearance. If you don’t believe me, you can go to another shop and check. So, will you sell it to me?”
Lily was a little disappointed. The stone that carried special meaning to the Daidouji Clan was tarnished by their own corrupted moral character, which had degraded and reduced the value of such an heirloom.
“I should sell it anyway,” Lily said indifferently.
“Thank you, miss!” The old man excitedly said. He walked away and then returned with a black wooden box with ten silver ingots within.
Right in front of Lily, he began to stack the ingots, one by one, into a black velvet bag and handed it to her. Since it wasn’t polite to let a virtuous woman be seen putting away money in front of others. The old man understood this well.
“Thank you, uncle,” Lily thanked him then received the bag.
In total, Lily had sold the items and received one hundred and eighteen kwan, plus fifty-one kwan she had confiscated from Shiu, she now had one hundred and sixty-nine kwan! She was now a young lady with money!
One should know that in Heian Empire, when the average income of a farmer’s family was converted to money, the total amount didn’t even add up to one kwan annually.
Matsuda earned around two hundred kwan a year, but this money was used to cover all the samurai in the family, to protect the territory, and for paying the munitions. He couldn’t use the money for only himself.
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As Lily had been walking on the path of a samurai, she also took risks and earned money. And, it seemed she could earn money really fast!
Of course, Lily didn’t sell the Shiroi Fugu and the shurikens. She returned them to Shiu. In some aspects, Shiu was her henchman. Of course, she couldn’t let this female ninja be barehanded.
Holding the money, Lily headed toward the chamber of secret techniques3. She wanted to buy the “Genji Swordstyle”.
It was an isolated ancient-looking hut behind the bamboo. Under the shadow of the bamboo stood a small statue of Hachiman4.
Lily walked into the room and saw a bald middle-aged Buddhist priest sitting there with a kasaya (clothing). Behind him stood many bookshelves adjacent to the walls filled with rare ancient books and scrolls.
“Great Master, I want to see the books about swordstyles here,” Lily said respectfully.
The Buddhist priest looked somewhat fiendish, but the way he talked was really gentle. “Miss, although this is a shop of Genji Dojo, any books regarding sword styles, techniques, and secrets you can name in Kanto, you can find here. Of course, they are just entry-level.”
Lily studied the Buddhist priest and thought he might have some old stories to end up in this line of business. Did he drop the butcher knife and become a Buddha?
The voice of the middle-aged Buddhist priest was low but tender. He continued, “Except for our peerless technique, the [Genji Swordstyle], we also have [Taira Swordstyle], [Shinkage-ryū], [Torikashinto-ryu], [Hokushin Ittō-ryū], [Lord Mikawa’s Sword Theory], [Mutsu’s Famed Style]…
“Of course, the best of them are [Genji Swordstyle] and [Taira Swordstyle]. And, because it’s more convenient and easier to learn, the [Shinkage-ryū] is also popular lately.”
Lily asked, “Master, how much do these swordstyles textbooks cost?”
“«Genji Swordstyle» has nine books. The author was the greatest hero in the history of Heian Empire, Genji Clan’s Martial God Yoshitsune. We sell the three first books here. The original price is two hundred kwan. As you are the Dojo’s disciple and you’re an official samurai, in principle, you can buy them at half price, which is one hundred kwan. However, you’re not allowed to spread it to outsiders.”
“The [Taira Swordstyle] has eight books. The author was the ancestor of the Taira Clan, the Highest Chancellor Taira Kiyomori. We also sell only the first three books for one hundred and fifty kwans. But I can’t give you a discount.”
“The [Shinkage-ryū] has five books. You can buy the whole series here with only eighty kwans. The Dojo’s disciples can have a seventy percent discount. I have to say, it’s the most practical Swordstyle.”[Torikashinto-ryu], [Hokushin Ittō-ryū], and [Lord Mikawa’s Sword Theory], we sell the whole series here at the price of one hundred and twenty kwans. The best discount I can give is seventy percent.”
“And the [Mutsu’s Famed Style]…”
“Great Master,” Lily intervened, “I have already thought about it. I want to buy the first three books of [Genji Swordstyle].
Lily immediately took out one hundred kwan.
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