unsheathed – Chapter 35: Licorice Root

Chapter 35: Licorice Root

Chapter 35: Licorice Root

After walking out of Clay Vase Alley, Liu Xianyang and Chen Ping'an saw two groups of people standing to their left and right. There was a little girl riding on the shoulders of a tall and burly old man, and there was also a haughty little boy in a big red robe standing beside a calm and dignified-looking woman. However, Liu Xianyang was extremely composed as he walked between them.

The old man noticed this, and he felt like the young boy's disposition was somewhat similar to that of a great general. Meanwhile, the young boy in straw sandals tried his best to hide his guarded and overcautious expression, and this made him appear far inferior in comparison.

After bidding farewell to the two of them, Lu Zhengchun obediently stood there with fear and trepidation, reporting in a careful manner, "Liu Xianyang said that if the esteemed immortals offer a fair price, he'll be sure to part reluctantly with his family treasure and sell it to you."

The woman glanced at the old man from Sun Scorch Mountain and asked with a smile, "Senior Yuan, what do you say?"

The old man pondered for a brief moment before replying in a solemn voice, "We can't make the same mistake three times, so we'll do as Liu Xianyang suggested and give him a profound amount of wealth. Sun Scorch Mountain can offer him the position of true disciple. Apart from this, I can also privately loan him an immortal treasure for 100 years. As for you, the Light Breeze City's Xu Clan, you can give him whatever you want."

The woman was astounded. "True disciples of Sun Scorch Mountain already enjoy an extremely noble standing. Yet, Senior Yuan is still going to loan him an immortal treasure? Perhaps this young boy is a cultivation prodigy who was accidentally missed by the porcelain buyers when he was nine years old?"

The old man ignored her questions, and he simply smiled at the little girl and said, "The stalls in this small town have all kinds of histories and origins. Young Mistress, you can take a look around, and you might even be able to obtain some hidden treasures."

Being the young child that she was, the little girl excitedly commanded her steed to run. The old man, who was the chief honored member of Sun Scorch Mountain, laughed heartily as he started to run forward slowly. He looked much like a moving mountain.

The little boy chuckled and said, "How mighty of Sun Scorch Mountain!"

The woman gestured for Lu Zhengchun to return first. Meanwhile, she strolled down the street with her son, explaining, "Apart from that ordinary and main path of ascent, Sun Scorch Mountain also has a special 'sword path'. Passed down until today, they've already opened six paths to ascend to the peak. In other words, Sun Scorch Mountain has produced six genuine Sword Immortals who have attained Dao."

The little boy sneered and said, "What does it matter how many Sword Immortals they've produced? That's nothing but history! How much can it help them? Looking at the Qi refiners who have the right to enter this small town, even those who came after us, which of their clans and sects hasn't been powerful before?"

Holding the little boy's hand, the woman smiled and said, "Then do you know? In the next 100 years, two new sword paths will reach the peak of Sun Scorch Mountain. Moreover, the special thing about the girl who's the same age as you is that she can freely walk around the 'sword peak' that's brimming with sword Qi. In fact, the length of time that she can stay there for rivals that of the grand elders of Sun Scorch Mountain."

The little boy faltered upon hearing this. He immediately stopped in his tracks and said in anger, "If that stupid girl's so capable, why didn't you tell me earlier, Mother? I wouldn't have targeted her all this time and caused her to always retort at me for no reason. If she became my wife in a few years, and if we became Dao partners further down the track, wouldn't that have greatly benefited our Light Breeze City?!"

Looking at the fury on the little boy's pretty and still childish face, the woman didn't get angry. Instead, she smiled and elaborated, "Both you and that little girl are supreme cultivation prodigies who have a chance to ascend to the 'Upper Five Tiers'. Thus, the threads of fate between you two are far more complicated than normal. Purposefully trying to seek a predetermined result will only make things more unsatisfactory. In any case, do you really think that she hates you with all her heart?"

The little boy frowned and said, "Does she not?"

"We'll let nature take its course," the woman murmured in a gentle voice.

The little boy suddenly became serious, and he muttered, "Mother, I don't like the person behind Liu Xianyang. In fact, I hated him at first sight!"

"How come?" the woman asked in curiosity.

The little boy carefully mulled over this for a moment before replying, "That person's a little strange, and he's different from Lu Zhengchun who understands everything, and also different from Liu Xianyang who understands nothing. Also, I especially hate his eyes!"

The woman merely treated this as her son being childish, so she said, "We can't do as we please in this small town. However, you just have to think about this when this realm collapses, what fate will the people who live here face? Thinking about this will make you feel much better."

The little boy nodded in understanding. At the same time, he repeated the two words that he had uttered when he had first seen the young boy in straw sandals, "Measly ant!"

After leaving the small town, Chen Ping'an and Liu Xianyang quickly saw the covered bridge. Liu Xianyang casually asked, "Why did Song Jixin's family build this covered bridge? So be it if they wanted to build a bridge. But why did they have to build it over the old stone arch bridge? I heard that the stone arch bridge wasn't demolished either, so it's as if a new robe has been pulled over it. Say, will it feel hot in summer? Hahaha..."

In the end, the tall and broad young boy started to laugh at his own joke.

A plaque with four golden characters was hanging on this side of the bridge, and no one knew who had written them. The characters were extremely large, and they read, "Rising Winds Crashing Water".

As the two youths walked up the stairs, Liu Xianyang heavily stomped his foot a few times and said in a mysterious manner, "Old Man Yao once told me that there's something strange under these stairs. He said that when they were building this covered bridge, Song Jixin's father ordered the workers to dig a massive hole late one night. They then buried a large porcelain jar that was as tall as a person. Do you not find this frightening?"

Chen Ping'an huffed and said, "What's so scary about that?"

The two of them walked onto the covered bridge that offered some shade. Liu Xianyang lowered his voice and whispered, "Do you think it's because several people have drowned in that deep pool under the covered bridge? So they needed to invite monks and Daoists over to suppress the sinister aura?"

Chen Ping'an never spoke carelessly about matters regarding gods and spirits.

Liu Xianyang received no response, and this quickly dampened his interest in the topic.

This wooden covered bridge had only been built a few years ago, so one could still smell the coat of paint and the faint fragrance of wood. The main pillars and beams were all constructed from wood that had been felled from the mountains and forests that had been sealed for countless years.

Transporting the felled trees had been extremely difficult, especially since the small creek that ran around the mountains wasn't deep enough for them to float on. Thus, the workers could only transport them during heavy downpours when the mountain became muddy and slippery. If they weren't careful, they would fall into the raging waters and face perilous danger. Fortunately, no one had slipped into the creek and drowned at that time.

Some also said that Mr. Qi from the private school had personally gone over to help, teaching the workers how to properly transport the felled trees. Thus, it was thanks to Mr. Qi that everything had gone smoothly.

When they arrived at the stairs on the northern side of the covered bridge, Liu Xianyang suddenly sat down on a long bluestone slab. Chen Ping'an had no option but to squat down beside him.

Liu Xianyang smiled and asked, "If it weren't for me, would you and Song Jixin have become very good friends?"

Chen Ping'an shook his head and replied, "Perhaps our relationship would be better. However, it wouldn't be by much."

Liu Xianyang was extremely curious, and asked, "Why? You two are neighbors, and you're also around the same age. Truth be told, Song Jixin does like to talk about profound principles all the time, and the way that he speaks is indeed quite unpleasant to the ear. However, I don't remember him ever doing anything too offensive. Moreover, you're also an extremely amiable person, so why don't you two get along?"

Chen Ping'an smiled and replied, "Let's talk about something else. When we get to the blacksmith forge, you definitely can't goof around like you always do. Whether or not you can keep that suit of armor passed down by your ancestors depends on whether you can become Master Ruan's disciple."

"I know, I know. Chen Ping'an, to be honest with you, you really have to change your habit of nagging others in the future. Otherwise, you'll eventually annoy me to death."

Liu Xianyang leaned back, resting his head on the topmost step of the covered bridge. He gazed at the blue sky and said, "You covered great distances with Old Man Yao, and you also ascended many tall mountains with him. When you're standing at the top of those mountains, just how far can you see?"

Chen Ping'an casually plucked a licorice root from the ground and flicked the dirt from it before placing it in his mouth and chewing. His words were slightly unclear as he replied, "It was probably the year before last when we ventured the furthest. It took Old Man Yao and me around 10 days to get there and back. We needed to take a detour around a dozen or so restricted areas, and in the end, we arrived before a strange mountain that was terrifyingly tall. You might not believe it, but when we looked down from the waist of the mountain, what we saw was already a layer of clouds and mists. In the end, Old Man Yao and I finally managed to climb to the top of the mountain. However..."

Liu Xianyang waited for him to continue. Yet, after waiting for what felt like half a day, he still didn't hear another peep from Chen Ping'an. He turned around and said with a smile, "Just like taking a **, who the hell pulls their pants up halfway? Are you going to continue or not?!"

Chen Ping'an was feeling slightly sentimental, and he said softly, "You also know that Old Man Yao had a very poor impression of me. He almost never discussed any important principles with me, and he also wasn't willing to teach me the true skills of pottery firing. Old Man Yao didn't like speaking to me, so every time we entered the mountains, he would only say very few words to me for the entire journey. When we reached the mountain peak that time, however, Old Man Yao was probably feeling good, so he spoke a few more words to me. He told me to simply look at the scenery over there, and not to speak about it after we left the mountain. He said that a person should put their head down and work with their full effort. If one only knew how to talk, they would bring themselves nothing but shame even if they managed to leave our small town."

Liu Xianyang tried to comfort him, saying, "I'm not trying to make excuses for Old Man Yao, but he didn't detest you even if he did dislike you. In fact, he was like that to everyone else, and it was only me that he treated a little bit differently."

Chen Ping'an nodded and agreed, "That's why I've always been extremely thankful toward Old Man Yao."ViiSiit nvelb/n(.)c/()m for ltest vels

"You've babbled on about so much, yet you still haven't told me what you saw!" Liu Xianyang suddenly blasted in anger.

Chen Ping'an pointed to the east. "The mountain that we climbed was already extremely tall. However, when we arrived at the peak and looked into the distance, what we saw was an even taller mountain in the east. I can't even describe how tall it was."

Liu Xianyang cursed, "So what you saw was nothing but a mountain? And here I was thinking that you saw a **ing flying immortal or something!"

Chen Ping'an pondered for a moment before saying with a longing expression, "What if there really is an immortal on that mountain?"

Liu Xianyang chuckled and asked, "Chen Ping'an, do you think that immortals also need to eat and **?"

Chen Ping'an stroked his chin and replied, "If immortals also need to eat and **... That seems a little unreasonable!"

Liu Xianyang ruthlessly smacked Chen Ping'ans head before leaping up and running away. As he ran, he didn't forget to shout, "Did an immortal just ** on your head?!"

Liu Xianyang hadn't controlled his power at all, causing Chen Ping'an to feel a little dazed at this moment. However, he didn't think about pursuing the tall and broad young boy. Instead, Chen Pingan stood up and muttered to himself, "Is thunder the snoring of immortals? When it rains, that can't be the piss of immortals, right? Otherwise, we're far too pitiful..."

Chen Ping'an quickened his pace and caught up to Liu Xianyang in no time.

They continued to chatter and jest, and before long, they finally arrived at the blacksmith forge next to the creek. Including the mud huts and thatched cottages, there were around seven to eight buildings in the surroundings. In Chen Ping'an's eyes, these were all bags and bags of copper coins.

There was also a large number of youths from the town currently digging wells, with many of them being disciples from the dragon kiln just like Liu Xianyang. Without work at the dragon kilns, there was naturally no more food in porcelain bowls bestowed by their emperor. Thus, those who were able to find work at the blacksmith and earn themselves some food in an iron bowl were already extremely fortunate.

However, according to Liu Xianyang, most of these people were only temporary workers helping with odd jobs here and there. He said that Master Ruan would only take a few in-house disciples at most. As for the others, they would at best only become long-term workers.

Liu Xianyang waved his hand and declared, "You can wait for me here. I'm going over to greet Master Ruan, and I'll see if I can bring you around to witness the sight of iron being forged. Tsk, tsk, I guarantee that you'll be frightened to death if you see his daughter swinging her hammer and forging iron!"

Chen Ping'an stood there and waited for him, not wandering around on his own.

Looking around, he could see that there were already seven wells taking shape, with frames and walls sitting around the wellheads. In some wellheads, people continued to climb out with baskets on their heads.

Chen Ping'an squatted down by habit as he looked at the busy workers, and he took a pinch of soil and slowly rubbed it between his fingers.

The soil felt slightly moist, yet it wasn't actually water-characteristic soil. Instead, it was the complete opposite, and it was fire-characteristic soil. However, it was the bottom type of fire-characteristic soil. According to Old Man Yao, this type of soil was called the "Seventh Month Fiery Star Soil". This type of soil would naturally become cool, and it wasn't too dry either. It was also extremely workable, and this ensured that the walls of the well wouldn't collapse too easily. This was a good thing.

Even though Master Ruan wasn't an expert when it came to digging wells, it was very clear that he wasn't an amateur either.

It was just that Chen Ping'an was slightly confused about why he needed so many wells in this small area.

Chen Ping'an grinned as he turned around to look at the creek.

Right now, in the eyes of this young boy in straw sandals, this nameless creek was like a treasure trove full of gold, silver, and copper coins.

However, when he finished collecting snake gall pebbles tonight, Chen Ping'an would secretly go to Clay Vase Alley and visit Gu Can's home. He would then follow Gu Can's instructions and dig up the treasure that he had hidden at the bottom of the large water vat. Gu Can had left in a hurry at that time, so he hadn't been able to tell Chen Ping'an very much. He had simply said that even his mother didn't know where this treasure was hidden.

As he thought about that snotty little kid, Chen Ping'an couldn't help but want to laugh.

In the past, Chen Ping'an had been a little kid who would follow Liu Xianyang around everywhere. He would follow him to fish, catch snakes, and steal eggs from bird nests. After he became a young boy, he had also ended up with a little kid who would follow him everywhere.

To the young boy with no relatives, one was like his older brother, and one was like his younger brother.

He needed to repay one, and he needed to look after the other.

Thus, even though Chen Ping'an's life had been full of hardships all these years, he didn't find it painful or miserable at all.

Johnchen and Flying Dumpling's Thoughts

Do you think immortals also need to eat and **? XD

Chapter end

Chapter 31: Beating Around the Mountain
Chapter 32: Peach Leaf
Chapter 33: White Dragon Disguising as a Fish
Chapter 34: Gathered Together
Chapter 35: Licorice Root
Chapter 36: Ancient Book
Chapter 37: Fist Technique
Chapter 38: Ninth Tier
Chapter 39: Cursing the Locust Tree
Chapter 40: Returning the Courtesy
Chapter 42: Prodigy
Chapter 43: The Young Boy and the Old Dog
Chapter 44: Coming to Light
Chapter 45: Sunlight
Chapter 46: Skirt Dagger
Chapter 47: Going Alone
Chapter 48: The Hunter and the Hunted
Chapter 49: Porcelain Shard
Chapter 50 (1): One Who is Destined for Great Things
Chapter 50 (2): One Who is Destined for Great Things
Chapter 51: Confrontation
Chapter 52: Shudder
Chapter 53: Gift
Chapter 54: Facing the Enemy
Chapter 55: Feeling Proud in the Spring Breeze
Chapter 56: Nodding Bodhisattva
Chapter 57: Sword Nurturing Gourd
Chapter 58: Teacher
Chapter 59: Sleep
Chapter 60: There's a Ghost
Chapter 61: Helpless Pawn
Chapter 62: Falling Tree
Chapter 63 (1): So That's How It Is
Chapter 63 (2): So That's How It Is
Chapter 64: The Three Chens
Chapter 65: Jewel
Chapter 66: Looking Up
Chapter 67 (1): Long Journey
Chapter 67 (2): Long Journey
Chapter 68: Spring Under the Heavens
Chapter 69: Night
Chapter 70: Daylight
Chapter 71 (1): I’ll Like You for a While Longer
Chapter 71 (2): I’ll Like You for a While Longer
Chapter 72: Black Cloud
Chapter 73: Wooden Figure
Chapter 74: The Fire Dragon Roams the Water
Chapter 75: Mountain Selection
Chapter 76: Back to Back
Chapter 77: Entering the Mountains
Chapter 78: Another Dream
Chapter 79: Spring Welcome Seal
Chapter 80: Leaving the Mountains
Chapter 81: Imperial Preceptor
Chapter 82 (1): Master and Student, Senior Brother and Junio
Chapter 82 (2): Master and Student, Senior Brother and Junio
Chapter 83: Dreams
Chapter 84 (1): I Have a Sword
Chapter 84 (2): I Have a Sword
Chapter 85 (1): Conclusion of the Examination
Chapter 85 (2): Conclusion of the Examination
Chapter 86 (1): Walking the Same Path
Chapter 86 (2): Walking the Same Path
Chapter 87 (1): Little Teacher
Chapter 87 (2): Little Teacher
Chapter 88: Grand Entrance
Chapter 89: Two Heads
Chapter 90: Heavy Rain
Chapter 91: Jade Hairpin
Chapter 92 (1): Bamboo Bookcase
Chapter 92 (2): Bamboo Bookcase
Chapter 93 (1): There's a Character on the Wall
Chapter 93 (2): There's a Character on the Wall
Chapter 94: A Feast for the Eyes
Chapter 95: Too Small a Place
Chapter 96: Demons in the Mountains and Rivers
Chapter 97: Bowing to the Mountain
Chapter 98: The Meddlesome Mountain God
Chapter 99: The Mountain God and the Bamboo Saber
Chapter 100 (1): The World Beneath One's Feet
Chapter 100 (2): The World Beneath One's Feet
Chapter 101: Guard the Mountain
Chapter 102: Soaring White Ray
Chapter 103: Bamboo Building
Chapter 104: Sharing the Spoils
Chapter 105: Rootless Duckweed
Chapter 106: People from All Walks of Life
Chapter 107: Fishing Net
Chapter 108: Spring Hunting
Chapter 109: The Young Boy Has Some Words to Say
Chapter 110: All Good Things Must Come to an End
Chapter 111: Bamboo Hat
Chapter 112: Powerful Individual
Chapter 113: Unparalleled Might
Chapter 114: Seeing A'Liang Again
Chapter 115: There's an Old Scholar In the World (1)
Chapter 116: There's an Old Scholar In the World (2)
Chapter 117 (1): There's an Old Scholar In the World (3)
Chapter 117 (2): There's an Old Scholar In the World (3)
Chapter 118 (1): There's Righteousness In The World
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