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22 Discussing The Fruits

 Only after a couple of breaths did Ranga manage to hide his killing intent. His trademark bashful smile returned to his face as he said, "Do not worry anymore. Now that you have reunited with your King nothing bad will happen to you."

The trio of Banabas, Nyasha and Tadi all rolled their eyes at this statement.

"Ahem..."Banabas cleared his throat and said. "This was just for you guys to get familiar with each other, so now let's get down to business. Normally we wouldn't send an incomplete team out for a mission, but every available team is currently out on a mission. There is a place called Honde Valley in the territory that the invaders took. Before those people came to attack we had a team that was patrolling the area and we noticed that there was a Tohwe tree that had twenty fruits that were not quite ripe yet.

It would take three years for these fruits to ripen, and before they could ripen those bastards attacked us. Even though our cultivation differs a lot from the invaders, the fruits still bear the same results. These twenty fruits would help us a lot, so your mission is to go behind enemy lines and retrieve the fruits. This mission was supposed to be an A ranked mission, but since you guys are not a complete team, and your new teammates are literally newbies it will rise in difficulty and it will become an S ranked mission. "

"This King has a question..."Ranga started. "These newbies, which class do they belong to?"

Banabas replied. "The first one is an enforcer. As for the second... we are not too sure which class he belongs to but he is probably a body transformation cultivator."

Not too sure...?

The trio was shocked. This was the first time that they heard something like this.

One has to know that the process of determine the talent and ability of a person was actually foolproof, and previously there had never been anything like being 'Not too sure'.

Seeing their dazed expressions Banabas smiled and continued. "I don't know much about him, but I was told to inform you about what I do know, since he is going to be your captain anyway..."

The three had shocked expressions on their faces. For a captain to be chosen the team would hold a meeting and vote on who would be the leader, but at the moment they were actually told that they already had a captain.

Banabas did not bother explain as he continued. "His name is Takunda Gumbo, he is fourteen years old and he just graduated from the Elephant Foot Guard. As far as we know he is an orphan from the Gumbo village. The envoy who found him did not get any definite results and when he brought him back to the EFG, he immediately threw him into the trial to join the EFG.

In that trial he murdered at least a quarter of the participants. And then from there he went through 4 years of intensive intermediate training and he came in first in the battle royal that the EFG hosted. You will know more about him and the other guy when you guys meet up."

After saying this much Banabas took out two pieces of paper and handed it to Nyasha and said. "Those are the full details of the mission and a map of the region you are going to. Your teammates will meet you there. Good luck!"

With that Banabas stood up and left.

The three youths spread out the map and were shocked to see the size of the valley that they were going to. One had to know that the continent that the Gutu Empire was located was very vast. In fact it would take them at least three months to get to Honde valley, and this is if they were on foot. If they used horses it would take less time, but they would also have to take care of the horses and this would add a little bit more labour.

The three studied the map in awe for a minute.

The map was very detailed as it showed the safest routes and the most dangerous. If they did not meet any enemy forces then it would be a relatively safe trip, since most of the beasts that were in Honde valley had yet to cultivate, and were just normal beats without any tiers.

After a couple minutes of studying the map, Nyasha finally spoke. "I suggest that we take three days to prepare and then set out then. What do you guys think?"

The two nodded and then all three parted ways to make preparations for their journey.

***

Three days earlier back at the training camp of the Elephant Foot Guard, the higher echelons were in discussion.

"Hall master that is just too crazy, are you trying to get the boy killed! I know that you probably hate him because he beat Tavonga in the end, but this is just too much. I won't accept it." the person who had spoken was a middle aged man with red hair. He was one of the trainers in the camp, his name was Nhamo.

The hall master had announced that the winner of the battle royal (Taku) was to join an active team as the captain, and on top of that he would have to meet up with his new teammate's mid-mission. This announcement had been met with silence at first before Nhamo had spoken.

Immediately after Nhamo had spoken, people began to whisper to each other.

None of them could comprehend what the hall master was thinking.

He was never one to get bested by his emotions, so the current situation was rather shocking to most people.

The hall master was silent as he watched the people in the large hall whisper to themselves. He did not really like explaining himself, when he made a decision, but with the current situation it seemed as though he really did not have a choice.

He had thought of many ways to dodge the issue, but ultimately he had to give some sort of explanation. To be honest he was in a very difficult position, it was one thing to make him a team captain but it is another to have him be the captain of an active team which had people who had more experience than he did.

After staying quiet for a couple of breaths and sighing the hall master finally spoke. "Listen to me. I am not doing this to put him in any danger, and even if I was it would only benefit him. In case you have not noticed, that kid is close to sensing Zesa. If he gets in situations in which he can reveal his potential then he would be able to form that strand of zesa even quicker. We all know that cultivation is not all about absorbing zesa and meditating.I don't really owe you people an explanation about why I am doing what I am doing, but all I ask is that you people trust me. My ultimate goal is to strengthen the Gutu Empire so why would I attempt to kill a genius of the Empire? Do you all believe that I am crazy enough to do sh*t like that?"

The hall suddenly became quiet.

No one really knew what to say at the moment.

On one hand they couldn't really figure out why he was doing what he was doing but what the hall master had said was true. He was a person who always had the empire's future in mind; he would even go as far as defying his higher-ups if it meant that a decision could benefit the Empire.

"If it makes you people feel any better..." the hall master stopped and sighed before continuing, "I will allow Tavonga to go along with him. It is fair that way isn't it?"

Most of people nodded in agreement. If you were already going to send out one genius, you might as well gamble and send two.

Before any form of agreement could be reached Nhamo spoke up again. "Even though this eases our suspicions, I do not believe that it is such a good idea. To be honest after your explanation, I now agree with you just a little bit, and I wouldn't mind you sending out Taku and someone else, but just not Tavonga. Tavonga was second to Taku only and I do believe that even though he accepted his loss, he still has a bit of his pride left. You cannot have two tigers living on the same mountain."

Most people were shocked by Nhamo's words because they realized that they could not really dispute with what he was saying. There had been cases in the past were people who had small rivalries would end up in the same team. This led to lack of stability in the team and would end up disbanding or in worst cases, killed when out on missions because of lack of coordination and or killing each other.

The hall master then nodded in agreement. He had seen his mistake and was quick to acknowledge it.

He then sunk deep into thought. He could not just send out any person with Taku, it had to be someone who was at least close to sensing zesa and someone who would be able to assist Taku at any time.

The list was not long to begin with, but he knew for a fact that others would not be able to keep up with Taku so he had only one option to be honest. But he looked rather reluctant to announce his decision.

This was because the person who he had in mind was his own nephew, Tino.

Tino had not done well in the battle royal. Not because he was weak, but because people had ganged up on him and attacked. Only after fighting with his thoughts for a while did the hall master finally speak.

"I have a suggestion. I have a nephew called Tino. He did not really do too well in the battle royale but he is a good fighter."

"What!"

There was uproar when the people heard this. The hall master was willing to send his own family out to join Taku.

Everyone in that hall knew that if it were them then they would not be able to send out their family.

Yet again the hall turned silent. They were truly moved by the hall maters actions and felt a little bit sorry for him actually. They admired the faith he had in his nephew but the danger it posed just made them feel more sympathy than anything.

Not waiting for anyone to reply, the hall master spoke. "So its decided, Taku and Tino will head out in a week to meet up with their other teammates. Now... let me explain to you the mission so that you can be more at ease. The mission is a mission to Honde valley. Four years ago a tohwe fruit tree was found in the valley. The fruits would need another 4 years to ripen but then those bloody f*cking invaders came, and the current location of their camp is located near Honde valley so we have not been able to go near it.

It is more of a stealth mission so we don't need to send out powerful personnel, the weaker the better. So I am pretty confident that they will be safe. There are a total of 20 tohwe fruits and they are about to ripen and we cannot, under any circumstance, let them fall to the invaders."

After saying this much, the hall master left leaving the hall shocked once again;tohwe fruits were very important to the growth of any empire, and now they actually found twenty.

Everyone in the hall was happy. But at the same time they felt a bit of anxiety.

Because if they were to land in the hands of the enemy, then it would be a disaster.