Chapter 5: Yes, I’m Beating You Up
The entire two and a half square miles of [Herb Fields] of [Qing-Yun Sect] reverberated with the name of a man, gluttony in human form, Fang Xing.
In the two months since Fang-Xing devoured at least 10 pounds of meat every day. And this didn’t even include the rice, fruits and vegetables, and wine that he ate on the side. On some occasions, Fang-Xing would even buy herbs and tonics to go along with his enormous diet. Thanks to him, all of the five Daotongs underneath Fang-Xing had easily, and deliciously, gained themselves an extra layer of fat with a side of double chins…
Yet despite his enormous diet and his Daotongs becoming fatter each day, Fang-Xing somehow became thinner as the days went by. In fact, he became so thin that he was like a piece of paper; a gentle wind could easily send him flying. Fang-Xing, however, was ecstatic by the sudden changes to his body and his eyes shined with brimming energy.
‘As I expected. [Qing-Yun Sect’s Qi Formation] is really powerful… No wonder Uncle Joshu was no match for that man,’ Fang-Xing’s mind wandered on as he stared at the rabbit roasting crisply on the bonfire in front of him.
In these two months, Fang-Xing and his “apostles” blew all their savings on food and, so, they resorted to hunting for food. After all, Fang-Xing couldn’t really ask his Daotongs to sell themselves… besides, they wouldn’t sell for much anyways.
Another drastic change to Fang-Xing’s body occurred in his five senses. Ever since he practiced in his crazy method, Fang-Xing had grasped the basic flow of Qi; his eyes and ears became much sharper than ordinary folk, making hunting a breeze for him.
On one occasion, Fang-Xing ran into a wild wolf and fought with it. He grabbed its tail to jump on the wolf’s back and then bashing it with his bare hands until the poor sucker died. By the time Fang-Xing dragged back the wolf back to his wooden cabin, Wang and the rest of the Daotong’s were so stunned that they almost peed their pants. From that day onwards, “Fang-Xing Laoda” was no longer a title forced upon them, but rather something they wished to call him from the bottom of their hearts.
‘I finally have enough Qi to circulate one full Zhou’Tian 1. I wonder if this counts as reaching the first tier of [Spirit Stage]?’ Fang-Xing thought to himself. According to the rules of the Sect, once a Daotong reached the first tier of [Spirit Stage], they will be excused from any hard labor and, instead, receive numerous benefits, and finally becoming a real disciple of the [Qing-Yun Sect].
[Qing Yun Sect’s Qi Formation] did not mention anything on how to distinguish the differences between each tier, so Fang-Xing had no idea how close or far he was to reaching the first tier.
“Laoda! We’re back with the firewood,” Freckled-Boy shouted, smiling broadly. He and Wang stood side by side, each holding a bundle of firewood on their backs.
Although Fang-Xing and his group started hunting for food, the work at the [Herb Field] could not be delayed. As a result, the Daotongs took turn hunting with Fang-Xing. Today, it was Freckled-Boy and Wang.
Back when Wang was Laoda, there was a clear chain of command between each member: Wang bullies Number 2; Number 2 bullies Number 3; and so forth. But as Fang-Xing became Laoda, everything had become much easier. No bullying was allowed within the group and all of them obediently followed underneath Fang-Xing. Everytime Wang habitually ordered Freckled-Boy or Ghost Face, Fang-Xing would kick him until he stopped.
“The fire’s almost out! Hurry up you two!” Mocked Fang-Xing, hurrying the boys over.
The supposedly simple and ascetic lifestyle of these Daotongs had now become quite full-filling.
[Editor’s note: I can’t help it, I have a pun-ing disorder.]
After the hunt, as they were portioning out the cooked hare, one of the Daotong ran while screaming, “Laoda! In the [Herb Field], there are people claiming that they are from the head department and they’re looking for you guys. They’re really angry because you guys are not there!”
All three of them looked up and saw Ghost Face. Fang-Xing wondered and said, “Isn’t the monthly inspection tomorrow? What are they doing here today?”
“I’m not sure. But apparently a Shixiong passed our [Herb Field] and decided to drop in unscheduled,” upon hearing this, Wang looked surprised and bitter.
Normally, no one ever bothered them as long as the [Herb Field] was maintained well. Even someone from the [Yaosi Department] would only check once in every 3 months to make sure no slacking occurred. Although, if the [Yaosi Department] found something wrong or unusual during their visit, the Daotongs would have a huge cut-back on their monthly wage. In certain cases, there were some rumors of severe punishments being carried out. Therefore, no Daotong welcomed the Shixiong in the [Herb Field] as the Shixiongs would often use the inspection to blackmail some silvers off the Daotongs.
Now that there was someone in their [Herb Field] for an early inspection, Freckled-Boy was so scared that his face turned pale as Ghost Face.
Then, suddenly, Fang-Xing broke the silence and said, “What are you all afraid of? I’ll go have a look,” while spitting the grassroots that he was chewing and ordering Wang to clean up their bonfire.
In the [Herb Field].
Three blue-faced Taoists stared coldly at Fang-Xing and his group.
‘It’s him?’ Fang-Xing smirked as he realized who the leader of the Taoist group was.
It was the Plump Taoist who ridiculed Fang-Xing in front of hundreds and thousands of people during the Recruiting Ceremony. The Plump Taoist was known as Yu Sanliang, an Outer Sect Disciple.
“Hah! Caught red handed! This is during work hours and you’re all slacking off! If I go and report this to the [Yaosi Department], they’ll beat the hell out of you guys!” As the Plump Taoist recognized Fang-Xing, his double-chin wiggled in excitement, “Oh, and especially you…. You’ve only been here for how many days? How dare you violate the rules of the Daotongs! Do you want to crawl back from where you came from?”
The Plump Taoist Yu did not belong to the [Yaosi Department] but instead worked at the [Zasi Department]2. The department was basically a glorified secretary who looked after all the menial matters in the [Qing-Yun Sect].
Yu was actually on duty to sort out something at the nearby field but he remembered the little monkey from the Recruiting Ceremony and wanted to check if Fang-Xing was beaten up by the older Daotongs. But who would’ve thought that when he arrived at Fang-Xing’s [Herb Field], the little monkey wasn’t there?
‘This is the perfect chance for a revenge for what happened three months ago,’ Yu thought.
“Isn’t that Shixiong Zhu? How nice of you to come visit? Please, take a seat.” Fang-Xing grinned broadly, pretending to order his Daotongs to find a seat for him.
“Bullshit! Zhu3 your face! My name is Yu.” His fat face jiggled as he cursed loudly.
Fang-Xing smiled as Yu was too stupid to realize the pun.
[Editor’s notes: My man.]
Suddenly, a random paragraph appeared in Fang-Xing’s mind:
‘[Spirit Stage]. Tier One. Physically weak. The amount of Qi contained in the meridians is…”
It was all information about Yu’s cultivation tier and stage, and even some extra information of his weak body.
‘[The Book of Revelation] can do appraisals on people too?!’ Fang-Xing was so surprised that he could no longer control his expressions.
Watching Fang-Xing’s expression change, the Plump Taoist Yu was convinced that his words must have frightened Fang-Xing. He then laughed coldly, “Scared, huh? The kneel in front of me. If I’m satisfied, I may just forgive you this time.”
Fang-Xing, thinking, circled around Yu.
Yu, unsure what the monkey was planning in his head, yelled, “What are you looking at, you little brat! I’ll kick you flying again if you keep looking at me like–”
“Are you from the [Yaosi Department]?” Interrupted Fang-Xing.
“No, but so?”
“Did the Shixiong from [Yaosi Department] ask you to come here for inspection?” Fang-Xing continued with his interrogation.
“I was just passing by, so I thought I’d check on all of you to make sure no one was slacking–”
“Slacking off, your mom!” Fang-Xing, being only 11 years old, was not very tall in comparison to the adult Yu. He, however, was able to reach Yu’s face with a swift jump and landed a loud slap across Yu’s face. Yu’s right cheek had a clear palm mark and then blood came oozing out of his nostrils.
“You son of a bitch, how dare you–” disoriented by the slap, it took Yu a few seconds before realizing what just happened. Before he could finish his sentence, Yu’s leg snapped backward from a powerful kick. Unable to balance, Yu face planted. Then, Fang-Xing slammed Yu’s body into the ground with his foot.
“How dare someone from the [Zasi Department] interfere with our [Yaosi Department]?” Landing another punch on the plump taoist’s face, continuing, “Yes, I’m beating you up. You know, you just need a good beating for thinking you have any authority here!”
Yu started crying but, remembering that he was a cultivator of the first [Spirit Stage], he tried to fend of Fang-Xing’s attack by using his Qi. Who would’ve thought that Fang-Xing had also reached the [Spirit Stage] and whatever Yu did, it did not help. All the Daotongs watched in pure terror as Fang-Xing continued to wail on Yu.
- Zhou’Tian: 周天, translating into ‘circle of the sky/heavens’. It is the name given to the concept or circulating something through the meridians starting and ending in the lower abdominal area (Dantian). ↩
- Zasi Department: 杂司监, lit. miscellaneous manage office. Hence they look after everything else the other departments don’t want to look after. ↩
- Zhu: it’s a play on words between 朱 (pronounced zhū, a popular Chinese surname) and 猪 (also pronounced zhū, meaning pig). Fang-Xing here called Yu as “Shixiong Pig”, but Yu thought he had merely remembered his name incorrectly. ↩