Translator : Casualtranslator
~ Enjoy ~
Zhang Xiaohua was puzzled when he heard this, why would he not be able to learn this “Worry free heart sutra” that he picked? Could he easily go astray during his cultivation?
Just as he was about to ask, Ou Peng continued to explain, “You have made things really difficult for me indeed. Sigh, never mind.”
After finishing his sentence, he motioned his hands to call Zhang Chengyue to the front, lowered his head and instructed a few lines. Zhang Chengyue’s expression became curious as he listened, his eyes flickered towards Zhang Xiaohua a few times and after the instruction was fully passed out, he hurriedly walked out of the discussion hall.
Ou Peng continued to speak, “Zhang Xiaohua-ah, your second brother has become a Piaomiao sect disciple while you have obtained an inner energy cultivation method. Our Piaomiao sect always settle our debts or grievances, and your kindness can be counted as to be repaid, are you satisfied with this outcome?”
Zhang Xiaohua quickly walked to the front, bowed respectfully and said, “Sect master Ou’s words are too kind, we two brothers are extremely grateful for your large gift. Many thanks for sect master’s kindness.”
Ou Peng turned his head towards Ou Yan, smiled and asked, “Yan-er, I have settled this matter like this, are you satisfied as well?”
Ou Yan laughed and replied, “Many thanks for elder brother’s kind actions, your younger sister is extremely satisfied.”
Ou Peng laughed heartily and said, “Alright, good. Members of the same family do not act as two separate families.”
Ou Yan stood up and said, “Elder brother, I have taken up much of your time so I will not interrupt your discussion of official work any further. Your younger sister will take her leave now.”
Ou Peng said, “Alright, hurry go back to rest. Take good care of your body.”
Ou Yan replied, “Understood, elder brother.”
After finishing her sentence, Ou Yan called Zhang Xiaohua and He Tianshu who had only been watching the show from the side for half a day, and the three left the discussion hall together.
Zhang Xiaohua looked at his second brother who was hiding his joy deeply in his heart and whose eyes were filled with gratitude, smiled slightly and nodded. He patted his breast to show that he did not return emptyhanded before following behind the slightly dumbfounded He Tianshu and walking out of the discussion hall.
The three people crossed several courtyards and were about to enter the garden when they heard someone called out from behind, “Villa master Ou, please hold on.”
Ou Yan and the rest stopped in their tracks when they heard the voice, they turned around and saw a person chasing from afar. When the person came closer, they realized that he was Ou Peng’s first disciple Zhang Chengyue.
When he got nearer, Ou Yan asked, “Chengyue, does your master have any other business?”
Zhang Chengyue replied respectfully, “Villa master please hold for a moment, my master has something to pass to Zhang Xiaohua.”
After listening to these words, Ou Yan and the rest felt strange and when Zhang Chengyue saw their confused expression, he did not bother to explain and handed over a thin booklet smilingly. Placing the booklet on Zhang Xiaohua’s hands, he said, “Zhang Xiaohua, my master ordered me to take out the ‘Piaomiao steps’ from our secret book repository’s third floor and pass it to you. The first three levels of the ‘Piaomiao steps’ do not have high requirements for inner energy so you should be able to learn it. However, you must remember that this ‘Piaomiao steps’, oh right, as well as the ‘Worry free heart sutra’, can only be practiced by you alone. Without the acknowledgement of Piaomiao sect, you cannot pass on these manuals to another person or lose these manuals. Else, our Piaomiao sect will have to administer harsh punishment on you, and might even cripple your martial arts cultivation.”
Zhang Xiaohua replied in a confused tone, “What is this ‘Piaomiao steps’? Why are its requirements so high, I don’t know inner energy and have never learnt of any footstep techniques so how do I learn this?”
Zhang Chengyue maintained his smile when he heard this, he said, “These are master’s instructions. You can ask pharmacy hall’s He Tianshu for advice if you encounter any difficulties while practicing in this ‘Piaomiao steps’.”
Afterwards, he turned around to He Tianshu and said, “He Tianshu, I believe you have heard what I said to Zhang Xiaohua earlier.”
He Tianshu was shot back from the request, he was still feeling envious of Zhang Xiaohu’s luck and was feeling quite annoyed but he answered, “I’ve heard them.”
Zhang Chengyue continued, “The earlier words are also for you, do you understand?”
He Tianshu was still oblivious as he replied, “Alright, I understand…”
Realization dawned on He Tianshu before he finished his sentence, he became overjoyed and immediately changed to a respectful tone, “Pharmacy halls’ He Tianshu understands, please pass on my gratitude to our sect master for his kindness.”
Zhang Chengyue nodded and said, “I will definitely pass on your feelings of gratitude, you deserve this reward too. Alright, villa master, this disciple will take his leave.”
After finishing his sentence, he bowed to Ou Yan and went away.
Zhang Xiaohua who was standing at a side saw He Tianshu’s deeply grateful expression and felt confused, he pulled the latter’s sleeves and look at Zhang Chengyue’s disappearing figure. Even when the figure finally disappeared, the latter’s feelings of gratitude did not diminish in magnitude. Zhang Xiaohua felt stumped so he asked, “Squad leader He, the person has already left long ago, there is no need to continue to look at him, you can’t see him anymore.”
He Tianshu turned his head back around while still drunk on happiness, his eyes were filled with emotions as he said to Ou Yan, “Villa master, your subordinate’s strength was insufficient the previous time causing you to sustain injuries, so I was already grateful for not being punished. I have not even dreamt of being rewarded today.”
Ou Yan smiled comfortingly and said, “Your sect master knows when to reward and punish clearly, and your contributions in the previous attack was not insignificant at all. If you were not there, the situation would have become very different. I believe that the sect master had not rewarded you earlier because he was undecided on the reward, and since there is a good opportunity now, I hope you can learn this martial art with Zhang Xiaohua together.”
He Tianshu replied modestly not daring to claim any credit.
Zhang Xiaohua was even more confused after listening to their conversation, he scratched his head and asked, “Squad leader He, is this footstep technique so awesome? How does it compare to ‘Worry free heart sutra’?”
Upon hearing this, He Tianshu pumped his fist down Zhang Xiaohua’s head and said severely, “It is one of Piaomiao sect’s top three martial arts, do you think it will be awesome? As for how good your ‘Worry free heart sutra’ is, I am not so certain but given the looks of everyone in the discussion hall earlier, I guess that is must be a rubbish martial art.”
Zhang Xiaohua was indignant when he heard He Tianshu’s reply, he argued, “But, this is from the second floor, surely it’s better than the first floor common martial arts.”
Of course, he did not dare to say, “Moreover, I took this manual from the third floor.”
He Tianshu answered, “If it is a good inner energy cultivation method, why would the sect master ask eldest senior brother to gift you with this Piaomiao steps?”
Zhang Xiaohua became enlightened, he finally understood the meaning of Ou Peng’s previous words.
Zhang Xiaohua said helplessly, “Then I can only practice this rubbish martial art.”
However, he defended his feelings and added, “At least it is better than those common inner energy cultivation methods in Jianghu.”
Ou Yan who was listening from a side comforted, “Don’t think so far ahead yet, I will ask elder sister Qin and the others when we get back.”
Following which, the three went through the small door and returned to Huanxi mountain villa.
As for station head Luo who was in Lotus escort, he was feeling indignant after hearing fourth master Wen’s words and his face became an ugly green shade in colour. However, he had no other choice but to go over to the courtyard where Zhang Xiaohu resided, walk to his door and pace back and forth in regret. He was not regretful of badmouthing Zhang Xiaohu behind his back, rather, he was regretting not knowing about Zhang Xiaohua having the support of Huanxi mountain villa behind him. In his mind, the two Zhang brothers were merely villagers from the countryside who came to Pingyang city to search for a living, Zhang Xiaohu encountered dog crap luck and received private tutelage from fourth master Wen when Zhang Xiaohua was injured by the inner energy attack of a fellow station member. Since Zhang Xiaohua was seriously injured yet Yu Deyi was still fine and Huanxi mountain villa did not retaliate, station head Luo assumed that Zhang Xiaohua was only a dispensable servant there.
As for him making Zhang Xiaohua pay for his living expenses, it was an upright action grounded by valid principles and he would naturally not pursue the matter if Zhang Xiaohu had paid up promptly. If the latter didn’t pay but fourth master Wen still chose to defend him, then he was helpless to continue insisting. Things would be perfect if fourth master Wen took his side and Zhang Xiaohu did not pay up, but Zhang Xiaohu actually paid the expenses in advance causing him to appear petty. However, these were things he could not control and the situation actually spiralled out of control when Huanxi mountain villa chose to take the side of Zhang Xiaohua! For some unknown reason, the villa master got upset for the sake of a few coins, so station head Luo suspected that someone was behind the scenes pulling some strings. As for Zhang Xiaohu accepting his apology, the former was only a delivery hand so he had to give some face to himself if he wanted to stay in the escort station.
Unfortunately, after pacing back and forth countless of times within the courtyard until the sun had reached its peak, station head Luo still did not see any sign of Zhang Xiaohu and got impatient. He called out to the delivery hand who was peeking at him from a side to inform Zhang Xiaohu to find him when he returned, placed his hands behind his back and walked away while muttering, “And he is only just a delivery hand.”
Who knew that Zhang Xiaohu still did not go over to look for station head Luo even when the sun had set?
Station head Luo was feeling slightly annoyed, this Zhang Xiaohu sure had big guts, did he expect himself to go over personally to apologize? Just as he was preoccupied with his thoughts, he saw a delivery hand hurrying over to him and shouted, “Station head Luo, it’s not good, things are not good.”
Seeing the scene before him, station head Luo scolded, “What is not good, why are you so flustered? Has the sky fallen?”
The delivery hand smiled obligingly and said, “How could it be serious, station head, it’s just that Zhang Xiaohu has returned.”
Station head Luo’s brows wrinkled more severely, he asked, “Didn’t you tell him to come over to my place?”
The delivery hand replied, “I did so, which is why is said that things are not good.”
“Why so?” Station head Luo asked curiously.
The delivery hand replied, “Earlier when I saw Zhang Xiaohu returned, I informed him immediately that you waited the whole morning for him and after seeing that he had not returned, you instructed me before you left to inform him to find you when he return.”
Station head Luo spat and scolded, “Why do you not even know how to talk, why did you tell him that I waited the entire morning? Just tell him to come straight, why say so much rubbish!”
The delivery hand continued, “You’re right, the little one deserves to die. However, when Zhang Xiaohu heard this, he ignored your instructions and walked into his own room smilingly. I was curious so I peeked into his room and saw Zhang Xiaohu packed his belongings. Guess what he told me when I asked him what he was doing?”
Station head Luo replied casually, “How would I know why he was packing? Surely he did not quit the station.”
The delivery hand shouted in surprise, “You are really smart, station head, no wonder you are our station head. That was what he said which is why I ran over to inform you.”
“What? He quitted?” Station head Luo exclaimed and stood up from his chair.
He pushed the delivery hand aside and rushed out of his door.
When the delivery hand saw station head Luo’s vanishing silhouette, he said to himself, “This station head’s qinggong is so awesome, but the sky hasn’t fallen so he did not have to hurry so quickly.”
When station head Luo arrived at Zhang Xiaohu’s room in a hurry, he saw that Zhang Xiaohu had already finished packing his belongings.
Station head Luo walked into the room and asked immediately, “Zhang Xiaohu, I heard that you have quit the station?”
Zhang Xiaohu smiled when he saw that the visitor was station head Luo, he replied, “That’s right, station head Luo. I have already settled the matters over at the accounts room and fourth master Wen’s side, came back to pack my belongings and will be leaving shortly after.”
Station head Luo wrinkled his brows and asked, “Settled with the accounts room? Do not leave any unfinished business there.”
Zhang Xiaohu replied, “Please be at ease, station head. I have cleared up the job expenses a few days ago and only went over to collect my pay, so both matters have been finished now.”
Station head Luo said, “Actually, about your younger brother’ matter, I was only doing things the way they should be conducted officially. I have always put the station’s interest at the foremost and was not trying to implicate you in particular…”
Zhang Xiaohu interrupted, “I understand station head Luo’s concerns, but this matter has already passed so let them be bygones.”
Station head Luo said joyfully, “In that case, Zhang Xiaohu, you have forgiven me?”
As he spoke, he took out the ten tales of silver and passed it over to Zhang Xiaohu. He said, “Then keep these money back.”
Zhang Xiaohu broke into a slight smile, he pushed back the hand which station head Luo extended and said, “This humble one understands station head Luo’s kind intentions to follow the station rules, how would I have any objections to you? I have already paid my younger brother’s living expenses to the station so all accounts have been settled and there is no need for further transactions. This twenty taels were given by Huanxi mountain villa so how can I accept it? If station head Luo wishes to return the money, you should look for Huanxi mountain villa and not me.”
Station head Luo acted as if he did not hear Zhang Xiaohu and he continued to push the money towards the latter. Finally, Zhang Xiaohu received the money and placed it on the table, he said, “Why must station head Luo make things difficult for me? I shall leave the money here.”
Station head Luo replied helplessly, “Fourth master Wen had said earlier that I have to seek your forgiveness no matter the cost.”
Zhang Xiaohu smiled and said, “Haven’t I said this earlier, the humble one has no complaints against the station rules so there is nothing to forgive. Moreover, fourth master Wen did not mention about this when I bid farewell to him so station head Luo does not have to put it to heart.”
Station head Luo’s heart relaxed when he heard these words, he smiled and said, “Since that is the case, I assume that you have forgiven me. Actually, Zhang Xiaohu, why must you quit when you have been doing well all these time? I was still planning to work together with you for the next few years, and have discussed with fourth master Wen to make you a bodyguard. We can work harmoniously together in the future with you being my deputy and I will nurture you whole heartedly. It’s such a pity for the station to lose such a good help.”
Zhang Xiaohua smiled as he cupped his fists, “Many thanks to station head Luo’s kind intentions but this humble one does not have the fortune of doing so.”
Station head Luo patted Zhang Xiaohu’s shoulders and said, “It’s alright, Zhang Xiaohu, the doors here will always be open for my best ever deputy. Just look for me if you are unable to adapt outside, and I will put a good word in front of the overall station head for you.”
Zhang Xiaohu cupped his fists again when he heard this, he said, “Alright, I shall remember these words from station head Luo. This humble one bids his farewell now. If I am unable to adapt in Piaomiao sect in the future, I will definitely look for station head and hope that you will present me with a livelihood again.”
After finishing his sentence, he picked up his knapsack and exited the door without looking back.
Station head Luo smiled as he watched Zhang Xiaohu’s disappearing back, he replied in a magnanimous voice, “No problem, Zhang Xiaohu, if you are unable to adapt in Piaomiao sect in the future, feel free to find me…”
“What? Piaomiao sect?!” Station head Luo suddenly realized the situation.
At that moment, the previous delivery hand entered into the room and said to station head Luo, “Station head Luo, I have just received news that the martial arts school division’s Yu Deyi and Yu Lun said Zhang Xiaohu had somehow had the fortune of stepping on dog poo and got accepted as a disciple in Piaomiao sect, the two have just gone out to drink some wine to relieve their spirits.”
With a “Pa” sound, station head Luo slapped the delivery hand on his face and said fiercely, “Why didn’t you say this earlier?”
“I only found this out recently, how could I have informed you just now?” The delivery hand covered his face and replied in an innocent tone.
“You……” Station head Luo stamped his feet and pointed to him while at a loss for words. He picked up the money on the table and stormed out of the room as though he was trying to chase after Zhang Xiaohu.
Unfortunately, Zhang Xiaohu had already mounted his horse and followed behind the Piaomiao sect disciple to who knew where.
At that moment, Zhang Xiaohua was sitting in his room in Huanxi mountain villa, a sky blue manual was placed on his table top while beside it was a thin booklet of only a few sheets of paper.
Without saying, they were the “Worry free heart sutra” and first three levels of “Piaomiao steps”.
Zhang Xiaohua first picked up the “Worry free heart sutra” and browsed through it indifferently, Zhang Xiaohua had never seen a normal inner energy cultivation method before so he had no idea what should one look like. However, from the general picture he got, this “Worry free heart sutra” had eighteen levels with secret formulae and training methods for each level. The description of each level was also clearly detailed and there did not seem to be anything missing, so why did Ou Peng say that he would not be able to practice it?
Could the manual be incomplete?
Or was it easy to go astray?
Just as Zhang Xiaohua was preoccupied with his thoughts, he suddenly heard a knock on his door.