Chapter 2001: Three Students

“Big Brother Wang, don’t joke around.” Xinxue blushed and hurriedly denied: “This is our Study Room’s new teacher, Young Noble Li.”

The man was surprised to hear this and turned around at Li Qiye while continuously scratching his head like a monk trying to touch his hair. Their place never had a teacher before so this was quite unexpected.

Despite his burly stature and clearly being older, he was a respectful person and quickly went up to Li Qiye and bowed with a smile: “Please forgive me for the misunderstanding, Teacher. I’m used to joking around with her.”

He apologized with sincerity so Li Qiye nodded.

“My name is Wang Zuodong, also known as Goldloop Fist. I’ve joined Study Room for a long time now. Please take care of me in the future. I look forward to your guidance.” The man enthusiastically introduced himself and gave Li Qiye a quick hug. [1]

 Li Qiye assessed him before calmly responding: “Gather your stuff. The first class will start today.”

Goldloop didn’t dare to show any slight and gathered his stuff before following Li Qiye.

In this world of books, one could find literature works everywhere - the caves or even beneath the ground. Moreover, they were available for all students at the academy. Anyone could come for a read.

Alas, few actually did so because they had no interest in wasting their time with history or fine arts.

“Sigh, Old Liu is finding more stuff but there are too many here. Not to mention graduation, he can read for the rest of his life and won’t be able to touch the surface.” Goldloop commented as Xinxue brought them to a dark chamber.

This large hall was especially quiet too just like the rest of Study Room. They could hear a series of coughs echoing inside this chamber. It was as if the guy was about to cough his lung out.

Shelves lined them up among the walls with books everywhere. There was a unique moldy smell as if one was basking in an ocean of texts.

After walking through lines of shelves, they found an old man in a corner of the chamber. He sat in front of a table with a flickering oil lamp not doing its job too well.

The light illuminating his face made it even more yellow. His posture was terrible as he flipped through the pages while murmuring: “Gold spleen, gold spleen…”

He occasionally coughed quite hard, causing his bent back to hunch down even more. The guy was too focused to notice Li Qiye’s group.

“Old Liu.” Xinxue called out.

He still didn’t hear her and continued flipping the pages.

“If you want to find ‘Gold Spleen and Jade Needle’, you are looking at the wrong spot.” Li Qiye said flatly. [2]

“Boom!” The book in the old man’s hand fell to the ground as he seemed to be struck by lightning. He stood up and stared intensely at Li Qiye, petrified.

“Old Liu, Old Liu, come back.” Xinxue waved her hand in front of the old man’s face.

“How, how do you know?” The old man finally asked in astonishment.

“I know everything in Study Room.” Li Qiye nonchalantly said.

“How should I address you, Young Noble.” The old man regained his composure.

“Old Liu, I got good news for you. This Young Noble is our new teacher, you have someone to ask for help now.” Goldloop smiled and said.

The old man’s reaction was just like Goldloop’s earlier, shocked. He bowed towards Li Qiye and said: “I have eyes but couldn’t see Mt. Tai and your arrival. My name is Liu Jinsheng. Others call me Old Liu.” 

His hunchback body inched closer to the ground as he bowed his head.

“Let’s go, it’s time for the first class.” Li Qiye nodded and said before leaving.

Xinxue followed him with the other two right behind her. Goldloop blinked at Old Liu; these three were very familiar with each other with their own way of communicating.

He wanted to ask if Old Liu knew who Li Qiye was since Old Liu was the oldest and most knowledgeable in their group.

Normally, Old Liu would answer but he looked solemn this time and didn’t respond.

Finally, Li Qiye took the group back to the main hall. Li Qiye sat in the main position while the other three sat opposite of him. The two men were very respectful and sat there like obedient students, despite being older than Li Qiye.

Li Qiye looked at the three and said: “I most likely won’t be here for long but three of you will still be my students. I do not want to hear negative things that can be detrimental to my reputation in the future, so, when I am here, everything will be up to me. Regardless of your feelings now, you will come to find that behaving properly is your best course of action before me.”

Minxue didn’t say anything due to her nature. The other two remained quiet as well; they had their reasons for being here.

“Okay, your turn to speak.” Li Qiye told the group.

Minxue kept her head lowered. She had a problem of lacking confidence while Old Liu didn’t want to speak either.

“Teacher, what do you want us to talk about?” The relatively outgoing Goldloop asked.

Li Qiye elaborated: “Celestial has five classrooms, but I’ll just focus on our Study Room. It is much simpler than the other four, and I’m sure you three have your reasons for picking it. I wish to hear the reasons.”

The three glanced at each other. No one wanted to speak on this issue.

“Very well, I will make it private. Go out now, only one come in.” Li Qiye waved his sleeve.

The three of them stood outside and no one wanted to be the first.

For some unknown reasons, the two men were wary of Li Qiye. This feeling came from deep inside.

“Haha, Elder Liu, you’re the wisest among us and probably have some good insight to our new teacher. Why don’t you go first and talk to him?” Goldloop told Old Liu in order to avoid going first. 

He normally called the guy, Old Liu, but now, he changed it to a respectful address in order to push the guy into the fire.

Old Liu gave him a disdainful glance and said: “You’re probably afraid of being figured out, you go first then. We’ll see who can stand outside the longest.” He then shamelessly walked and stood behind Goldloop.

“Old Liu, what do you mean, I don’t have anything to hide.” Goldloop gave him the side-eye.

“Fine, I’ll go first.” The cute girl toughened up after seeing the hesitating men and walked inside.

“Sigh, we two men have thrown away our face today, not as brave as the little girl. I guess that’s what happens when we’re afraid of being exposed.” Goldloop shook his head and said.

1. Note, the word for ring here is like a loop you wear around your wrist as a weapon. For example, one guy in Kungfu Hustle

2. Not 100% sure on this translation until I get more context. That word is spleen for sure, it could be a shorthand of two characters combination that I’m not catching

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