Translator : Casualtranslator
~ Enjoy ~
After mixing with these azure robed servants with little hats, Zhang Xiaohua naturally understood their thoughts. Some of these people were born in servitude in Huanxi mountain villa, whereas the others were sent as children from Pingyang city’s neighboring households by their families for money. Life in the mountain villa was quite boring, and their hearts would become empty after a long time. The rules in Huanxi mountain villa were strict, none would dare to flout any of them outright, although that did not exempt them from partaking in sneaky actions.
Ma Jing probably belonged to that group of people whose hearts were empty. He was usually bullied in front of his peers, so upon seeing the more recently arrived Zhang Xiaohua, how could he let him off that easily? He would naturally find ways to tease him and gain enjoyment from it, but Zhang Xiaohua has set his mind on learning martial arts so where would he find the time to entertain the jokes and pranks of such people? The swan is not bothered by the sparrows, Zhang Xiaohua has not kept any of these pranks into his heart, and unknowingly, he has dug the hearts of these people and already started to put them beneath his notice.
Zhang Xiaohua was not aware of his own changes. Actually in the cases of most changes, the observer outside would have a clearer picture than the changing person himself. As the saying goes, cities are built by the sages, and Zhang Xiaohua could not be bothered to engage himself in the small plays among these greasy kittens.
On that dark cloudy day, Zhang Xiaohua spent his time meaningfully by keeping himself busy with work. The excitement from yesterday had already subsided, even though only one night has passed since then, one falls greater when his expectations are higher. Zhang Xiaohua did not expect that the martial arts he was looking forward to so much would require him to begin from the horse stance. It was truly a case of guessing the journey but not guessing the beginning. However, this horse stance was too easy, how could it be considered as martial arts?
At least, he had finally seen a shadow of his dream being realized, and Zhang Xiaohua naturally dropped the burden which he had carried for so long as he waited patiently for He Tianshu’s arrangements.
The person whose feelings were of opposite of Zhang Xiaohua was He Tianshu. Yesterday, He Tianshu did not put the matter of teaching martial arts to the boy in his eyes, he thought it was a ripple in his life which could fade into oblivion. However, upon seeing Zhang Xiaohua’s performance in the horse stance yesterday, his heart made a three hundred and sixty degrees turn.
Even though Tian Zhongxi and his group of azure robed little hats men were envious of He Tianshu and the other’s life, and wanted to enjoy their perks, He Tianshu himself had a basin full of bitterness which he did not know when it would be emptied. As long as there were people in this Huanxi mountain villa, the people would be discontented, and if people were discontented then they would become prickly and petty. Piaomiao sect’s disciples’ pettiness was no different from the other servants, and He Tianshu was a warrior who battled with this every day.
Even though it seemed easy, and there is no need to talk about the upper echelons of the Piaomiao sect, but for the other members like He Tianshu who looked like they have luxurious and glorious lives to outsiders, they had their own difficulties. Following their own personality and disposition, they were split into several personal factions, and among these factions, the most important thing would be martial arts. If one had profound martial arts, he would not need to grovel before other people’s legs, and could instead extend his own legs for other people to grovel before. Those who were not as good with martial arts would have to count on their personal connections, but like everything that happened in Jianghu, in the sect, and on earth would have their own price.
For someone with a common personality and ordinary aptitude towards martial arts like He Tianshu, they had nothing to bring out from themselves and could even rely less on their connections. They were not willing to bootlick, they were not opportunistic, and they could not gain the favors of their superiors, so they only had a few buddies in the sect to enjoy meat, wine and perhaps a little boasting. When Huanxi mountain villa needed servants, who will the sect send? Of course it would be He Tianshu types of people who do not have close relationships with the majority. It might be called an important task entrusted by the sect to only the trustworthy and reliable people, but in actual fact, the job was only slightly more than glorified servants who still had to work in the fields.
After working in the medicinal fields for several months and not even seeing someone like Zhang Chengyue to come over and inspect their progress, how could the task be considered as important to the sect? In the end, they had to rely on themselves to make a miracle to elevate their positions even further in the sect so they would not need to continue working on the fields and stay as a farmer. A father reaping his son’s fortune was common logic, and a master enjoying his disciple’s glory was the same. Now when he thought about it, He Tianshu regretted making Zhang Xiaohua call him “Squad leader He” and not master so that this genius disciple would not leave his own palm.
However, who would have spared a second glance at Zhang Xiaohua’s ordinary appearance.
Regarding Zhang Xiaohu’s training in the martial arts, He Tianshu was also in a dilemma. Martial arts could be divided into internal and external martial arts, and the saying goes, “Inner training from a breath, external training on the bones, tendons and skins”. No matter what martial art it was, there would be some requirement to learn it. For example, in the case of internal martial arts, inner energy would have to be cultivated using some inner energy cultivation art, but He Tianshu’s own inner energy cultivation was ordinary and his cultivation technique was but one of the normal ones that could be found in Piaomiao sect. Even if this was the case, all cultivation techniques could only be taught within the sect, and imparting it to Zhang Xiaohua was something harshly prohibited. If found, not only would Zhang Xiaohua’s inner cultivation be wrecked, even he might face expulsion from the sect. Another thing was that these cultivation arts had to be cultivated since young when the body’s meridians were not fully developed yet, so that the meridians would be molded by the training and become thicker for a better foundation in the future. For Zhang Xiaohua whose meridians had already developed, it was hard for him to have any further advances in the internal martial arts.
Thus, He Tianshu did not consider this path of internal martial arts for long, and that left external martial arts. External martial arts practitioners could train their bodies to a certain degree so that they would not lose out in strength to an inner martial arts practitioner, like in the case of Shi Niu whose age was younger than He Tianshu, but someone like He Tianshu could never compare to such people. However, external martial arts also had a requirement to reach greater heights, Shi Niu was tall and large even when in his youth and his muscle density was unordinary. Looking at Zhang Xiaohua, it was highly unlikely that he satisfied the requirements. There was also an important point, external martial arts practitioners had to rely on external aids like medicine to stimulate their bodies, and if you think about it, wouldn’t that also imply that any further growth would depend on stronger external aids to stimulate the body further? The body which had been stimulated would also need herbs to maintain, and only through this process of stimulating and maintaining could external martial arts practitioners improve their prowess. If you only relied on the stimulants, then one can wait to collect their corpse; they simply had no chance to enter the Jianghu.
Even in the case of Shi Niu, he had to rely on some power to enjoy the herbs and medicine, if not why would there be a saying “the poor pursues literature and the rich pursues martial arts?” It was precisely for this reason.
After thinking about it, He Tianshu’s head was in turmoil. Even though there were many herbs in Huanxi mountain villa, they were all reserved for Piaomiao sect’s exclusive use. He would not have the guts to steal any. Furthermore, even if he could take some, this type of herbs would have to be consumed not just once or twice, and he could not afford to steal some every day.
With so many thoughts and troubles in his head, how could He Tianshu be calm?
He Tianshu’s thoughts could not settle on a solution all the way until after dinner time when he reached the usual place where he trained Zhang Xiaohua,.
However, he still had time to consider since Zhang Xiaohua was still not there yet. He Tianshu was slightly surprised, what was this brat up to? He was still filled with excitement last night, so why was he slackened so much over one day? He could not let this go, the boy was going to be He Tianshu’s insurance for the future, so the former would have to hold on to this opportunity tightly. Just as he began to look around to find Zhang Xiaohua, He Tianshu heard the running footsteps coming closer towards him, and when he turned his eyes to looked, it was indeed Zhang Xiaohua who had arrived.
When Zhang Xiaohua ran to his front, He Tianshu steeled his expression and asked solemnly, “Zhang Xiaohua, why are you late today? Is it because you feel that my training is too easy, or do you think that martial arts are easy to learn?”
Zhang Xiaohua saw that He Tianshu was upset so he quickly explained, “Squad leader He, it is not like that. I did not have any of these intentions, but was delayed because brother Xi instructed me to do some other things.”
Upon hearing his reply, He Tianshu‘s wrinkle smoothened and he nodded in approval. He said, “Mm, alright. If there is nothing in the future, you would have to come earlier. As the saying goes, ‘each cun of time is a cun of gold’, the more time you spend on learning martial arts, the further you will be able to go.”
Zhang Xiaohua nodded his head seriously and replied, “I understand, squad leader He.”
He Tianshu continued, “Then we shall begin for today. First adopt a horse stance position.”
After saying his sentence, He Tianshu also switched to the horse stance so Zhang Xiaohua did not hesitate and immediately split his legs apart, positioned both hands to his waist and bent down, adopting a steady and firm horse stance.
Seeing Zhang Xiaohua’s horse stance, He Tianshu did not waste any time and taught him the points to note and the benefits of the horse stance. After he was done, He Tianshu asked, “You should be clear by now, do you feel your lower body stabilizing?”
Zhang Xiaohua nodded his head in agreement, and He Tianshu continued to ask, “Is your waist sore or does your legs hurt?”
Zhang Xiaohua replied, “Not at all, I feel the same as usual.”
He Tianshu gave a silent approval inside; his student was indeed a genius.
Then, he said, “Alright, you can get up.”
Zhang Xiaohua stood up naturally without any pain as though he just got up from a chair, and He Tianshu nodded in approval again when he saw it.
Then, He Tianshu asked, “You have not learned any fist martial arts?”
Zhang Xiaohua replied, “Not before, but I have seen people performing the sixth fist martial art in Lotus escort.”
He Tianshu nodded and asked, “Do you still remember it, can you show it to me?”
Zhang Xiaohua answered, “No problem”
After replying the other party, Zhang Xiaohua adopted the sixth fist martial art’s initial position and was about to begin his performance.