Chapter 11 – Zhang Hu
“Weasel?” Wang Lin was stunned. The first person he thought of that might fit the description was the yellow cloth disciple that laughed at him, however, he wasn’t sure.
“Ah? Did you not see him? He’s the man responsible for organizing the work of the disciple. He is also an honorary disciple but has been given right to start his cultivation. Wearing yellow clothes, he doesn’t look like a good guy at all. We all call him weasel.” Zhang Hu explained as he drank water.
Wang Lin took a bite of a sweet potato, then said, “I know who it is, I saw him today. He told me to bring back 10 vats of water a day starting tomorrow or else I won’t get any food.”
Zhang Hu was stunned. After staring at Wang Lin for a bit, he asked, “Brother, did you offend him before?”
Wang Lin shook his head and asked, “Why?”
Zhang Hu showed Wang Lin a pitiful expression. “Wang Lin, are you thinking that the vats are like the ones you use at home? Like this big?” He gestured with his hands
Wang Lin had a bad feeling and nodded.
Zhang Hu had a bitter smile. He said, “You must have offended the yellow weasel. The vats he is talking about is the size of this room, filling up ten vats… Wang Lin I won’t eat these sweet potatoes, you keep them. You’ll be lucky to get food every 4 to 5 days. You are new here, and all the foraging spots in the mountain are taken. Only the elder disciples can pick them. Tomorrow, I’ll just eat my wild fruits.” He placed the remaining sweet potatoes on the table, sighed, laid down on his bed, and fell asleep.
Wang Lin felt rage surge through him, but then he thought of his parents eyes filled with expectations and forced down his rage. He laid down on the bed asleep full of rage.
It was still dark on the second day when Wang Lin climbed out of bed. Zhang Hu was still snoring. Wang Lin put on his gray outfit and quickly made his way to the place he had met the weasel. Soon after he arrived, the sun emerged from the east. Yellow-clad youths opened the doors and gave Wang Lin weird looks. “At least you are on time. Get a bucket and head out east. There is a spring in the mountain, carry water from there.”
He paid no more attention to Wang Lin. He sat cross-legged on the ground and breathed slowly while facing the sun rise. A barely visible white mist came from his nose, rolling like two dragons.
Wang Lin eyed him with envy. He then walked into the room and looked around. Finally, behind a door he saw the 10 vats and let out a bitter smile as he walked toward the east gate.
Wang Lin arrived at the location after a long walk. The scenery was quite beautiful and the sound of running water was soothing. It was a place that could sooth the heart.
He had no time to appreciate the beauty. When the bucket was full, he picked it up and quickly went back up the mountain.
Wang Lin kept doing this until dusk. He hadn’t even filled one vat yet. If it wasn’t for the sweet potatoes filling his stomach, he wouldn’t have the strength to continue. His arms and legs were sore and numb. They hurt whenever he moved.
Wang Lin pondered a while, then carried away half a bucket of water to a deserted area. He looked around to make sure no one was in the vicinity. He dropped the stone bead into the bucket and sloshed it around a bit. Then he took out the bead and drank the water. He immediately felt a warmth in his stomach, and the muscle pain disappeared.
Although the effect was inferior to the dew’s, Wang Lin was still excited. He touched his chest and adjusted the position of the bead. He decided to not let anyone know of this treasure.
After he finished drinking half a bucket of water, his muscles were no longer sore and he felt full of energy. He quickly continued his job of fetching water.
That night, he dipped the stone bead in another half bucket of water and drank it. To avoid suspicion, he came back with a weary look on his face.
A while later, Zhang Hu came back. He still wore that overworked expression on his face. The two talked for a bit and Zhang Hu hesitantly begged for two pieces of sweet potato. He ate them and fell asleep on his bed.
Time passed by quickly, and in the blink of an eye, a month had passed since Wang Lin became a Heng Yue Sect disciple.
Wang Lin found out that Zhang Hu’s job was to collect firewood. He must collect enough firewood before he could eat. He had been collecting firewood the entire three years since he became an honorary disciple of the Heng Yue Sect. Three years ago, he would only eat once every three or four days, but now he has shortened it to where he could eat once every two days.
According to him, the honorary disciples are to do chores for ten years and be able to eat three meals a day before they can learn even the most basic cultivation.
The inner disciples are not like them. They have their own master, do not do any chores, and have their own rooms. Their only job is to cultivate.
In addition, there is a person in between the inner disciples and the honorary disciples, such as Wang Hao who became a help, but he’s basically a servant.
These people do not need to do chores, and also practice some low-level techniques. They only need to complete the work their master assigns them. However, these people possessed very little talent and they would just spend their whole lives being helpers.
As for the so called talent, Wang Lin learned from Zhang Hu that it was simply spiritual energy. Everyone has it, but in varying amounts. If one has enough spiritual energy, they can learn an immortal technique in a year, but if lacking, it would taken dozens or even hundreds of years.
A man’s life is limited. Someone with mediocre talent will never get anywhere in his lifetime. That is why the sect put such large important on spiritual energy.
This month, when Wang Lin was fetching water, he drank a lot of water that the stone bead had been soaked in, causing his body to become much stronger. Before, it would take him six days to fill the 10 vats, now it only took three.
However, in order to keep others from being suspicious, Wang Lin always got up before sunrise and leisurely walked toward the mountain with the bucket. While others were surprised he was able to finish within three days, they thought it was because he wake up extra early and went to sleep late.