Note: Everything above this is an announcement by Creative Novels. It’s not written by me (Reika). So if you read something like “I’ve been sick” that isn’t me. That’s the owner of Creative Novels.
Chapter 36 – Never Marry A Man With Two Tintins
One of the elders of Qinghua Sect who was good at healing and alchemy needed two disciples to do minor, unskilled tasks. The two disciples only needed to be level four disciples but their monthly salary was twice what Cheng Nuo currently got. Also, if they performed well and showed an aptitude for the work, they were likely to be formally accepted as the elder’s official disciple.
Li Qing told Cheng Nuo the news with a smile on his face and patted him on the shoulder: “Among these newcomers, when it comes to attentiveness and comprehension talent, I think I can count on you. If that wasn’t the case, Wang Hui wouldn’t have been saved. Go and give face to Bai Cao Yuan by performing your tasks well.”
Of course, Li Qing didn’t mention that the real reason why he was doing this was because Liu Guang had searched him out earlier and asked him to take care of Cheng Nuo. When an elite disciple asked him for a favor, Li Qing had to give him face. If this wasn’t the case, would a newcomer who hadn’t even been in Bai Cao Yuan for half a month be given this opportunity? Cheng Nuo was overjoyed and thanked him solemnly. Li Qing said a few more encouraging words.
Cheng Nuo thought this matter was related to Ningzi’s pillow talk. Buying some snacks and cloth from the disciple in charge of supplies, Cheng Nuo gave them to Ningzi. Apart from their night duties, the females also washed the clothes of the more than 100 people in Bai Cao Yuan. Ningzi took the gifts and winked at Cheng Nuo: “If you want to do it later, come to me at any time.”
Cheng Nuo’s skin broke out in goosebumps. How could there ever be a time when he was interested in other men? Although there are no sisters in this world…
The next day Cheng Nuo packed up and left Bai Cao Yuan along with an older disciple.
The place where the elder lived was called Du Yue Lin. The environment was very quiet and elegant, with a row of bamboo buildings hidden in the bamboo forest. Seventy-eight disciples were busy making medicine in the courtyard. Based on their clothing, all of them were level two and three disciples.
The arrangements for Cheng Nuo’s stay here were quickly finished. The head disciple here was a cold-faced young man named Qi Lei. Cheng Nuo followed the other’s example and called him Shixiong. Cheng Linzi, the master of Du Yue Lin, was in closed-door cultivation so Qi Lei was the one who currently handled everything.
The work here is not as hard as Bai Cao Yuan’s but they were just as busy. Since Cheng Nuo’s time in Bai Cao Yuan was short, he wasn’t familiar with many of the herbs and procedures. Thus, from time to time he needed to ask for instructions. Knowing that Cheng Nuo had used his connections to secure this post, Qi Lei looked coldly at him and his impression of this new disciple fell to the very bottom.
In the evening, Qi Lei gave two books to Cheng Nuo and the other disciple. He said expressionlessly, “This book contains some of the most common herbs used for alchemy. There are more than one hundred herbs listed. You two have a good look at them. In three days I’ll test you on what you’ve learned.”
Cheng Nuo hurried to catch up, revealing two tiger teeth and laughing: “Thank you Shixiong.” He really wanted to learn more.
Qi Lei glanced at him then waved them out.
Perhaps because Cheng Linzi loves tranquility, there weren’t any women who did special services here. That night Cheng Nuo lit the oil lamp and started carefully reading the book.
Herbs are classified according to their effects such as wound healing, detoxification, boosting skills, and so forth. The effects of pills were different depending on the proportion of herbs used. Some herbs were classified according to their element. For example, lightning elemental herbs should not be taken by those who had water elemental energy. If they did, it will negatively affect their cultivation.
Cheng Nuo read the book with relish. This kind of thing sounded completely unscientific but it had its own logic what was very interesting. After reading about the different types of herbs he understood the basic theory about the elements and which ones complemented or obstructed the others.
The book’s illustrations were very detailed. Nonetheless, in the end, they were just brush paintings so there was a gap between illustrations and reality. During the day Cheng Nuo worked hard to memorize the appearance of the real thing with all his heart. His memory wasn’t as terrible as Liu Guang’s and he was able to master the topic.
Three days later Qi Lei came to test them. He gave them ten random samples and asked about the herbs’ attributes and common uses. Cheng Nuo was able to answer 70% of the questions correctly, which was more than his fellow disciples. Qi Lei, slightly surprised, looked at Cheng Nuo and said, “Your task for the next three days is to master the most basic wood cultivation technique.”
The foundation of the wood elemental ability was the same as those of the other elements. Once a foundation had been established, each person should discover which skills and abilities most suited him. The path of healing was one of many paths. Cheng Nuo kept his eyes on Qi Lei as he demonstrated the cultivation technique. He had been confused about some things before but after he received this instruction, he made great progress. Qi Lei’s attitude towards Cheng Nuo also changed a lot and he patiently taught Cheng Nuo who was completely oblivious to the change.
Cheng Nuo was very busy. Knowing that Liu Guang had settled down, he wasn’t as worried as before. After he had been staying in Du Yue Lin for more than a week, he still wasn’t able to find enough free time to visit Liu Guang but Liu Guang came to visit him again.
Liu Guang was a little taller and thinner. His green eyes were bigger and brighter, too. Cheng Nuo was pleasantly surprised and asked Qi Lei for permission to go and bring Liu Guang back to his rooms for a chat.
Qi Lei inclined his head slightly to Liu Guang. In fact, strictly speaking, Liu Guang should be called Shixiong but Liu Guang didn’t care at all since all his attention was focused on Cheng Nuo.
Cheng Nuo took Liu Guang’s hand and pulled him along all the way to his room. Liu Guang looked up at him from time to time, his face slightly flushed.
This time Liu Guang came with some gifts: delicious snacks, beautiful clothes and so on. They sat opposite each other and talked. Cheng Nuo said worriedly, “Last time you gave me so much money, did you leave enough for yourself?”
“I have enough.” Liu Guang kept his eyes fixed on Cheng Nuo and said, “If a disciple goes on a mission, he’ll be paid more.”
High-level disciples were equivalent to the military strength of Liao Ji City’s elites. They often go out to perform various missions, such as intelligence work, capturing criminals, etc., and the rewards differed based on the difficulty of the task.
Cheng Nuo didn’t quite understand so he was still worried, “Are those tasks dangerous?”
Liu Guang shook his head indifferently and his voice suddenly became softer, “That’s not it. I came here to tell you that I won’t be able to come and see you – we’re going to the forbidden area to cultivate and we will come out two years later.”
Cheng Nuo was shocked and repeated, “Two years?”
Liu Guang nodded, his face gloomy.
Going to the forbidden are was dangerous but as long as it made him stronger, this trial was nothing. The only thing that troubled him was that he wouldn’t be able to see Cheng Nuo for two years. He was also worried that people would bully Cheng Nuo. Right now he could barely stand being separated from Cheng Nuo for a few days. He trained very hard and felt exhausted at the end of the day but even that wasn’t enough to stop him from thinking about Cheng Nuo when he lay in his bed at night… Liu Guang secretly clenched his teeth and hid this feeling of loneliness from Cheng Nuo.
Cheng Nuo was silent for a while, thinking that this world has its own rules. Liu Guang training in the forbidden area should be a good thing. He finally showed a smile and rubbed Liu Guang’s hair vigorously, whispering, “Then you must be careful and take care of yourself. I’m afraid that the wild animals in the forbidden land are more dangerous than anywhere else. You must not show off…”
Liu Guang listened carefully and didn’t show impatience like he usually did. Cheng Nuo put his hand on his shoulder and thought that this young and tender shoulder was thinner than before. He couldn’t help but take Liu Guang into his arms.
Liu Guang felt as though his entire body had suffered an electric shock and it seemed as though his feet were floating on clouds. Blushing, he put his head on Cheng Nuo’s shoulder and whispered: “I will become stronger after two years…I’ll be fourteen then.”
In another year, he will be an adult and be able to marry.
The elite disciples lived in Hidden Dragon Mountain. Lower-level disciples weren’t allowed to enter that place. On the day they left, Cheng Nuo couldn’t help asking for a half-day leave from work. He waited in the distant forest for Liu Guang to come out. A group of disciples wearing silver robes and riding magical beasts emerged. Liu Guang, a little teenager with red hair riding a tall magical beast stood out from the crowd.
Cheng Nuo was just about to walk forward when, suddenly, he saw a level two disciple run over and lift a package to pass to Liu Guang. It looked like it was clothes or something similar. Cheng Nuo smiled, surprised. Was this Liu Guang’s new friend? He didn’t remember Liu Guang mentioning that he had made a new friend.
He looked at that person curiously and realized that the teenager was a beautiful, fair-skinned female. He was around thirteen or fourteen years old. His straight blue hair was tied in a high ponytail. The teenager lowered his head shyly and his face was a little red. He looked up at Liu Guang from time to time. It looked like…
Cheng Nuo’s mind became chaotic. If a little girl had a passionate crush on that little brat Liu Guang then Cheng Nuo would probably feel like a proud parent, but this sort of thing… he put a hand on his forehead.
Although he had more or less adapted to this world’s strange ways, this kind of thing really annoyed him whenever he saw it! And that teenager… how could he have a crush on a little boy who was half a head shorter than him?
Liu Guang had actually forgotten Nan Cheng’s name. Seeing those black eyes again, he remembered that he had saved such a person during the entrance trial. He was at a loss for a moment. Why did the troublesome female come to see him?
Nan Cheng whispered, “I made some clothes for you to thank you for saving my life that day. I wanted to see you earlier but I never had a chance.”
Liu Guang glanced at the package. Cheng Nuo was a very good cook but he was clumsy when it came to other things, including sewing. He waved his hand carelessly and said, “No need, I have enough clothes to wear.”
Cheng Nuo had bought him two sets of clothes before and, in the past, Cheng Nuo used to mend Liu Guang’s clothes with his own hand. Thus, he was unwilling to throw those old clothes away.
Several of Liu Guang’s senior fellow disciples immediately started joking: “Little Shidi, accept it! It’s made with good intentions!” and “Ah, why can’t I get the ‘hero saves the beauty’ moment…?”
Liu Guang’s face suddenly turned red and he said: “I’ve said no, take it back.”
He rode straight ahead on his magical beast without looking at Nan Cheng. When he came out of the elite disciples’ restricted area, he could not help glancing at both sides of the road. Although he knew that Cheng Nuo could not come out most of the time, he was still disappointed. Now he was even more impatient to get away from the crowd.
Nan Cheng’s eyes suddenly turned red as he retracted the package. He was now a level two disciple. Female disciples were rare and most of the senior disciples were all very courteous to him. What’s more, he was from a good family so from the time he was a child, when had people ever not given him face? This set of clothes was the first one he had ever sewn and no one knew how many times his fingers had been pricked by the needle.
He couldn’t help but lose his temper just like a spoiled young noble. He was so furious that he dropped the package on the ground at shouted at Liu Guang’s back: “If you don’t want it, I’ll throw it away!”
Cheng Nup wanted to burst out laughing. In his opinion, Liu Guang was just a bratty little kid. How else should one view this sort of scene? However, he doesn’t approve of getting romantically involved at such a young age, therefore he won’t help.
When he saw Liu Guang riding around a corner, Cheng Nuo hurried up and shouted, “Xiao Guang!”
Hearing that familiar voice made Liu Guang feel excited. He quickly turned his mount around and jumped down. He blushed and said, “Why are you here?”
“I’ve come to send you off with this gift.” Cheng Nuo smiled and handed over a parcel. Inside were some of Liu Guang’s favorite foods: rice balls containing small pieces of meat. The whole thing was firmly tied with lotus leaves. He stroked Liu Guang’s hair and smiled, “You can eat this on the way.”
Liu Guang’s eyes sparkled but he just nodded. He didn’t want to tell Cheng Nuo that they couldn’t bring anything into the forbidden area except clothes. He stared at Cheng Nuo for a while before jumping back up on magical beast.
Only when the figure disappeared completely did Cheng Nuo turn back sadly. For two years, he will be so worried! Just as he turned around, he was startled to see a young man staring at him with a hostile gaze.
He immediately smiled and explained, “My name is Cheng Nuo, Liu Guang’s brother. You are?”
Nan Cheng stood there frozen for a moment, blushing. He bowed his head in embarrassment then said, “I’m Nan Cheng. Please help me give this to Liu Guang.” After saying this, he stuffed the package into Cheng Nuo’s hands then ran away so fast that Cheng Nuo didn’t even have time to call out to him.
Cheng Nuo didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry. The clothes that were made today certainly wouldn’t fit Liu Guang when he came back in two years’ time! If he really could wear it at that time, then Cheng Nuo knew that Liu Guang would be half-mad with rage. That little boy always hated being short. He couldn’t help but smile at the thought of the awkward look on Liu Guang’s face.
Two years was not a long time but neither could it be said to be a short time. Cheng Nuo’s life was very busy during this time. His only worry was that there was absolutely no news of Liu Guang at all.
Unexpectedly, after Cheng Linzi emerged from his closed-door cultivation that Qi Lei would recommend Cheng Nuo to him. After passing Cheng Linzin’s tests, Cheng Nuo became an official disciple. His rank rose from level four to level three. It was considered difficult for level four disciples to rise in rank to the third level but for a level three to become level two was merely a question of time and cultivation.
Cheng Linzi was serious in speech and manner, a strict teacher who had high standards. Cheng Nuo’s personality was originally quite careless but, without noticing how it had happened, he has changed. When it comes to cultivation, Cheng Nuo was very conscientious and strict.
In one year Cheng Nuo mastered the basic cultivation and healing techniques. His wood elemental abilities had slightly improved. Now he could use the wood energy in his body to grow some commonly-used plants. In addition, his ability to toughen his body could now last for ten minutes. However, his cultivation technique did not focus on strengthening his body.
Every morning he forced himself to get up an hour earlier than the other disciples to train his speed and endurance. He often missed Liu Guang when he trained. That little brat spent a lot more time training than Cheng Nuo did. Since Cheng Nuo was the older brother, he had to work harder!
Liu Guang’s little friend Nan Cheng came to see Cheng Nuo several times, always with some gift and asking for news of Liu Guang in roundabout ways. Cheng Nuo was speechless at first but a parent who always likes to talk about his child. Whenever Cheng Nuo reminisced about Liu Guang, Nan Cheng would listen to those stories with starry eyes.
In truth, Cheng Nuo was also worried about something. What would he do if later on Liu Guang had a gay affair? It would be better for Cheng Nuo to live separately from them because if he had to look at this sort of thing, his eyes would go blind…
He seldom looked in the mirror but when he did he saw that his face had matured a lot. His childish look had completely disappeared and his figure was quite decent, much better than it had been in his old life before he transmigrated.
It’s been almost two years. That little boy Liu Guang should be a big boy now, right?
Every time Cheng Nuo thought of that, he couldn’t help but smile.
- Yes, it’s a timeskip and after this the kids will be of age to fool around some. 😉
- Thanks for reading. I’ll try to translate at least one more chapter this month.