Chapter 5: Concentration
Tian Luo tried to find A Lian for a very long time; she waited until the sky was entirely black, and only then did A Lian return. Immediately getting angry she said,
“Where the hell were you?! I thought you were caught.” Previously A Lian had also reminded herself not to get caught.
A Lian felt somewhat embarrassed, still immersed in the joy of the chance encounter with High God. She wanted to inform Tian Luo of this matter; Tian Luo inhaled when she heard the story. Astonished, she said,
“You are saying… You saw High God Rong Lin?”
A Lian nodded,
“Yes… High God is still as affable as in the past.”
Tian Luo knew A Lian usually worshipped this High God, and she’d heard her say High God Rong Lin had a good reputation. His kind-heartedness could be said to be a model for all men in the six worlds. She now understood why A Lian had not returned until it was late, she had been with High God. Naturally, Tian Luo had nothing to worry about. Curious, she asked,
“Then what did High God Rong Lin look like? Is it possible that he is more beautiful than High God Xiao Bai?”
Tian Luo had never seen the aspects of society, and so believed these Ninth Heavenly Pavilion senior males were very handsome. On the day of the admission ceremony, she had seen the aloof and remote High God Xiao Bai, whom only a foolish person would offend. How could A Lian have seen High God Xiao Bai, and not blush or have her heart race like the other newly entered female disciples—unless she had already seen even more handsome male disciple, how could she behave like that?
Naturally, A Lian thought High God Rong Lin was the most good looking. But certainly, High God Xiao Bai was High God Rong Lin’s close friend, and as a kind hearted High God, perhaps he would be unwilling to have people praise him and belittle his friend, A Lian thought, then said,
“Both High Gods’ looks have their own merits, it makes no sense to compare.”
Each had their own merits, and it was about the same. Tian Luo could hardly imagine, that in this world, there was someone who looked similar to High God Xiao Bai.
Tian Luo pulled her arm,
“You tell me about it again.”
A Lian’s expression was joyous and smiling, she said,
“High God’s eyes are like stars, eyebrows like the moon, he was tall and slim, and all the limbs below the neck…”
Agreeing, Tian Luo said,
“Ah then he really is handsome!”
Exactly. A Lian, grabbing the High God’s robes she wore agreeingly said,
“The rarest thing is High God’s kindness. Today, I disturbed his rest, not only did he not rebuke me, but was also quite concerned about me, telling me to be careful when I went back.”
Tian Luo became even more excited! And let out a loud incessant sound. Such an excellent High God, no wonder A Lian thought of him for two hundred years.
After returning in the middle of the night, A Lian conscientiously washed the High God’s robes three times. Finally returning to Tian Luo’s side, she asked,
“Is there any fishy smell?”
Tian Luo very much understood A Lian’s mood, and immediately sniffing, stated,
“Actually there is no fishy smell, there’s also a small fragrant smell.”
The next time she saw High God, it was important to return this gown to him. Naturally she wanted to wash clean any residue of her own scent. Listening to the words of Tian Luo, A Lian let out a breath and relaxed a little. But frowning again at the next moment, she said,
“This fragrance, ah, what if High God doesn’t like it?” She thought about it, and muttered, “I will wash it again, and dilute the fragrance a little.” At that moment, the two East Sea women, Yi Gui and Yi Zhang returned, and saw A Lian drying clothes in front of the courtyard.
The clothes looked like a man’s. Yi Zhang disdainfully said,
“This bighead really has no shame, even seducing a man, and going so far as to dry men’s clothing in front of us in the courtyard.”
Yi Zhang did not like A Lian, apart from A Lian’s low rank, she hated her face. Having a cousin that was better looking that herself, she was already under a lot of pressure, and now there was this bighead fish who she didn’t know. The silver carp’s appearance was not plain, to be born with a charming face like that, people could not help but loathe.
Unexpectedly, Yi Gui looked indifferent and did not say anything. The Ninth Heavenly Pavilion usually did not forbid male and female relationships, and naturally many people formed cultivation pairs—one night stands were also commonly seen. Don’t talk to other people, Yi Gui had said, but only a few days after arriving at the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion, she had already had intercourse with a few senior brothers. But, Yi Gui’s thoughts were a bit more delicate that Yi Zhang’s, and now seeing A Lian drying the robes, with a glance saw that the robe was not an average person’s.
After A Lian took the clothes to dry, she took her own jade gourd from her belt. This jade gourd was gifted to her by A Pang when she was leaving Dongze Lake. It merely looked like a very small ornament to tie at the waist, and simple in style, but actually it could be packed with many things. Perhaps the part packed inside A Lian especially treasured was High God’s robes, she could not let it get damaged.
After that day, she went to the Blue Wave pond every day, to possibly be able to see High God again.
She had been so excited that day, she completely forgot to ask High God what he liked to eat. If he did not like the taste of silver carp, and if he liked to cook, which kind of cooking skill did he like the most.
A Lian was completely preoccupied that entire day. The Ninth Heavenly Pavilion did not have an undeserved reputation, and after the entrance ceremony, the daily schoolwork was very arduous. Newly entered disciples, even though the elite of each clan had been chosen to come, the fact was their aptitude was unevenly matched. A Lian and Tian Luo were like this, at the bottom of the ranks.
For instance, when learning the illusion technique today, Tian Luo had been scolded to tears several times.
Teaching at the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion, and famed for his fighting prowess, was Sir Chong Xu. It was said that this sage who was young, conceited and contemptuous, wouldn’t even bow his head for a magistrate’s salary. However, after marriage, in order to make a living to feed his family, he had no choice but to teach at the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion.
For several times in a row, Tian Luo completely failed. This made Sir Chong Xu extremely angry,
“With your aptitude, even if you entered the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion, you won’t be able to stay more than a few days. You had better pack your luggage a bit earlier and leave, and save our Ninth Heavenly Pavilion’s rations,” he berated.
A Lian had wanted to speak for Tian Luo, when Sir Chong Xu came over and glared,
“You need not urgently defend her, you are better off not associating with her! Look at you, are you casting a spell?”
A Lian merely had three hundred years of cultivation, and Tian Luo was of no help, with herself approaching four hundred years of cultivation, her parents had given her many spirit pellets to eat in order to increase her cultivation. Thus, Tian Luo could also transform half of the front of the gourd to a specified shape, although she couldn’t change it entirely, when compared with A Lian, being able to always change a little much better. If it really must be said, Sir Chong Xu did not speak wrongly.
After meeting with Sir Chong Xu’s abusive tirade, Tian Luo once again used the immortal arts, and was finally able to transform. And so, A Lian felt embarrassed, as she was the only newly entered disciple to continuously fail the basic illusion technique.
After school, Tian Luo at once consoled her and said,
“Don’t get too upset. We can practice again properly—diligence can make up for awkwardness, so just try harder.”
Naturally, A Lian understood this reasoning as her aptitude really was very lacking.
After the two people returned, they diligently practiced the illusion technique.
Tian Luo had passed with much difficulty, as she herself was a tactless and impulsive person. Not knowing the secret, she could only watch A Lian fail, and was worried but did not know what to do. A Lian saw her looking as though she was blaming herself, and although she felt discouraged, she nevertheless did not dare to show it in front of Tian Luo, so as to avoid her blaming herself even more.
After entering the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion, not everyone could successfully graduate. Three months after entering, there was a large test, and if the standard was not met by that time, Sir Chong Xu had no choice but to tell them to pack up and leave. After all, the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion needed a leader of the six worlds. How was A Lian, this kind of humble small demon with stupid techniques, able to come and muck up the ten thousand year golden reputation.
In the dead of the night, seeing Tian Luo sleeping, A Lian got up and went alone to the side of the Blue Wave pond. The reason she’d returned this time was actually not to see High God, but rather because she wanted to properly practice the illusion technique.
Tomorrow was Sir Chong Xu’s class, and if she was thick skinned again, she would be unable to stand his sarcastic and cutting remarks.
A Lian faced the willow at the side of the pond, and silently read the mnemonic chant to herself, before trying it several times. Every time she failed, the willow would sway lightly, but nevertheless still looked the same, not even the tree leaves transformed a little.
This was the basic illusion technique; if she could not learn to do something this simple, then she certainly could not stay at the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion for a long time.
A Lian tried once again. Then again and again, until soon the sky was almost bright.
“…What are you doing?”
A Lian’s slightly sluggish body heard a familiar voice in the background, and excitedly turned to see a tall, handsome silhouette. The gloom on her face was swept away, as she immediately bounced over,
“High God Rong Lin!”
Rong Lin had already watched for a very long time. Although he did not have much contact with the small fish demon, he knew that if he talked to her, it would definitely be a struggle. He had planned to turn a blind eye, immediately leaving like this, when he’d heard her say the secret immortal arts. Seeing her clumsy appearance again and again, that had been the last straw.
With her qualifications, when all is said and done, how did she enter the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion in the first place?
She smiled prettily, but he looked just as indifferently as always and did not answer her question, but quietly and coldly said,
“Close your eyes, and focus your energy…..”
A Lian smiled sluggishly, and managed to respond, but only then did she realize that High God was unexpectedly giving pointers to herself. She immediately followed suit.
“Don’t be distracted, you must now think of what you want this tree to turn into in your mind. Think about what that thing looks like, then silently say the mnemonic chant……”
High God’s voice really was pleasant to hear!
The illusion technique was not difficult at all, let alone this was an entrance-rank illusion technique. It was just a tree in front of you, a fixed motionless shell you changed at will. As long as there was a little skill, it was a simple matter.
Even though Rong Lin occasionally returned to the Ninth Heavenly Pavilion, as a High God, it was naturally impossible to teach these spells in person, and he for the most part only lectured. To instill benevolence, one ought to speak of a few spiritual things, such was in line with his High God status.
He saw the small fish demon’s earnest face, and personally felt that he should help. It should not be too much of an issue, as at the moment there wasn’t much to care about, and so he turned back to her. Treating her indifferently, so as to avoid her thinking they had a close relationship, he pointed out her spells. Then seeing her not move for a long time, Rong Lin said,
“I’m fine, I’m fine”
If it was really fine, what was this manner of speaking? This simple illusion technique, as long as there is no distraction, was absolutely unlikely to be a problem. He had even personally given directions, but she had an entirely careless attitude! Even a better tempered High God, also would not be able to stand being treated by a disciple this way. He turned around, just about to think about reproaching, when he saw the goal, a tall lofty figure.
Rong Lin was stumped for words. Why did she transform the willow into him.
However, seeing the small fish demon scratch her head in embarrassment, and looking at him with large eyes, she remorsefully said,
“I’m sorry, I… I’ve been thinking of High God.”