Book 6 Chapter 16 - The Human Heart Isn’t Made of Stone

Lin Xi looked at the river water.

The river surface was calm and beautiful, surrounded by a layer of calm mist. There were fishing boats and merchant ships moving along the surface, calm and quiet.

He Zijing and more than ten Swallow Descent Town’s officials walked to this river dam. When they got on the dam, He Zijing squatted down, tapping the dam with his fist. The exceptionally sturdy feeling he got in return made him feel a bit more at ease, the sinister smile on his face also becoming a bit stronger.

He was also looking at the bright and clean river surface, walking up to not far from where Lin Xi was standing.

“Sir Lin, don’t you now feel that it is time for you to put away your senseless actions, return to East Port Town?”

He didn’t look at Lin Xi who turned around to look at him. He faced the river water, his calm face carrying a hint of pride as he spoke these words.

The elder who was originally calmly half reclined on the bamboo chair’s body went rigid. He wanted to get up and say something, but Lin Xi instead patted him, having him relax. Then, he calmly said, “When the matters are related to so many lives and fertile land, what senseless actions are there to speak of?”

“Sir Lin, you said there is something wrong with this dam, but even after this night of violent rain, isn’t it still fine?” Kuang Xiuxian behind He Zijing said angrily, “This Swallow Descent Town’s river dam is within my realm of duty, and not something that Sir Lin should be interfering with, right?”

Lin Xi gave this official who was so fat his official uniform was stretched to the point that it didn’t have a single crease, looking like a leather bag a look, and then said, “You didn’t even have it within you to check some areas crucial to the dam? Have you listened to the opinions of those who have participated in the construction and fortification of the dam?”

“Sir Lin.” Kuang Xiuxian sneered, reaching out a fat and white finger, pointing at the river dam. “No recordings are as convincing as examining with one’s own eyes. You would rather believe the words of an old farmer than the determination of so many Yunqin officials?”

Lin Xi’s brows furrowed slightly. He looked at this entirely red faced fat official, and then said in a calm and serious manner, “It is because he treasures these fertile lands and their people more than you all, so I believe him. Also, judging from what you said, I believe you don’t even understand the basic infrastructure of this dam, so you tell me if I should trust him or you.”

When Lin Xi said this, he was extremely impolite, to the extent where he was questioning Kuang Xiuxian’s true abilities. Kuang Xiuxian was immediately angry to the point where his face turned purple, shouting in anger, “You…!”

He Zijing waved his hand, stopping Kuang Xiuxian. He turned around to look at Lin Xi, calmly saying, “East Port Town’s river dam and the one here are the same, not producing any issues either.”

Lin Xi didn’t want to see He Zijing’s face. He curled his lips in disdain, and then his face instead revealed a truly happy smile, saying in mockery, “This is naturally the best result.”

He Zijing looked at the expression on Lin Xi’s face, at his smile. He himself also laughed, full of joy. “However, the Warden Office you are in charge of isn’t. Earlier, three prisons were burned down, and it was rumored that there were only three people left behind by you. Otherwise, if there were a few more people, the situation might have been a bit better.”

Lin Xi’s brows immediately furrowed. This was indeed something he didn’t expect.

“Also, along the way, I picked up some even more interesting information.” Lin Xi’s change in expression made He Zijing feel even more joy, Kuang Xiuxian and the others behind him even more so couldn’t hide the expressions of mockery on their faces.

He Zijing gave Lin Xi a look. After a slight pause, he continued, “Substitute Town Supervisor Jiang Wenhe actually accompanied you in your folly for an entire night, not only transferring over large amounts of manpower from the military, even Martial Sector’s shipbuilding wood was used, even using a large amount of Internal Affairs Sector’s silver to purchase large amounts of straw sacks and wood materials.”

Lin Xi’s face sunk, coldly looking at He Zijing, “It seems like your attitude towards me isn’t just one of simple conflict.”

“Sir Lin is young and heroic, but you should understand that transferring funds from the Public Warehouse is a serious crime. Speaking words that frighten and confuse the people is even more a serious crime.” He Zijing narrowed his eyes slightly, saying this while looking at Lin Xi.

The entire body of the elder who sat on the bamboo chair went rigid once more.

He had also served as a minor government official before, so his way of speech as well as his knowledge and experiences were quite different from ordinary villagers, he also understood that the ‘confusing the people’ in Yunqin law was a serious crime second only to the serious crime of an armed rebellion.

“I will carefully explain the reasoning, I believe that when so many people’s lives are involved, many officials higher up won’t act negligently.” Lin Xi instead coldly replied to He Zijing.

“Human lives are indeed a big deal. However, the issue right now is that both of the dams are fine, but your Enforcer and Warden Office’s officials have an issue. You say that you trust this old farmer, but I instead wish to ask you, those higher up officials, would they believe in the judgments of Trade Sector officials, believe this truth, or would they trust an old farmer whose teeth have pretty much fallen out?”

Lin Xi also furrowed his brows in disgust.

He didn’t wish to speak any more nonsense with He Zijing, didn’t wish to go beyond his authority to suppress anyone, nor did he want to lose any respect and etiquette before the faces of other officials. However, these officials really didn’t give him any reason to show respect or maintain etiquette. Moreover, after saying so much, the only matter he hadn’t thought about was that the Warden Office would actually catch on fire.

“What do you all want to do?”

However, right at this time, his expression changed, his voice also becoming unprecedentedly clear and cold.

The elder on the bamboo chair only turned his head, also breathing heavily from being angered badly. He gripped the walking stick in his hand, as if he was going to strike in a certain direction.

On the distant high cliff, some villagers were currently heading down, seemingly wishing to return to their original homes.

When he saw Lin Xi turn around in disgust, as well as Lin Xi and Chen Yangzhi’s current expressions, He Zijing sneered, coldly saying quietly, “Maybe someone told them to return… but even if no one did, if there is nothing wrong with this dam, could it be that you want them to continue remaining on that hill? What are they supposed to eat and drink on that hill?”

Lin Xi didn’t give him or those officials behind him a look. He grabbed the bamboo chair the elder laid on, and then began to quickly run across the dam, heading towards the distant tall hill with incomparable inner rage.

Previously, both him and Chen Yangzhi had carefully examined the conditions and water levels at various areas of the dam, they were certain that during the next four or five days it would take for the water level to decline, this dam still had a chance of bursting at any time. If it wasn’t because he had the ten minute rewind ability, having a set amount of time where he could ensure his own escape, he wouldn’t dare stay on this dam for such a long time.

When he began to do these things yesterday, he naturally already thought through all possible consequences. However, regardless, the worst result was merely losing his official rank that he didn’t care too much about to begin with.

It was because he was Vice Principal Xia’s Heaven’s Core level secret, someone with a Divine General identity, that was why he could easily speak the words ‘everything is just fleeting clouds’, this line.

Moreover, he clearly understood that even if there were some higher rank officials who produced misunderstandings towards his actions and behavior, Vice Principal Xia and the others definitely wouldn’t.

He hated trouble the most, and also only wanted to calmly watch the beautiful scenery on this river. However, the things that he ran into, he couldn’t just indifferently stand by and watch them play out. Since he was already involved, so many people investing so much, then there was no way he could give up like this.

Lin  Xi began to run even faster.

Since cultivators had patience and stamina that normal people could not match, that was why when they saw him run at such an astonishing speed, many people who were originally currently heading down the hill couldn’t help but slow down their movement, stopping.

At the very front of the several hundred people, Lin Xi saw people dressed in official uniforms after all.

As such, his expression became even colder.

“The dam’s water level is too high, there is still a danger of bursting at any time. Do not go down from the hill!”

When he was still a hundred steps or so away from these people, Lin Xi’s firm and resolute voice already sounded.

When they saw this Young Sir Lin who rushed over, many people on the hill were immediately shaken by a type of mysterious force. However, there were many people who already went down and entered the fields, even though they stopped their steps, there were still some who turned around to look behind them, a bit embarrassed.

The few Civil Sector officials among them had calm expressions, sneering, not saying anything.

It wasn’t that Swallow Descent Town didn’t have any cautious individuals or officials who admired Lin Xi, but that they didn’t have authority. The ones in Swallow Descent Town with the most authority were still the people of Town Supervisor He Ziling’s faction.

Lin Xi carried the bamboo chair, Elder Chen Yangzhi was breathing heavily from anger the entire time.

Because he was too stirred up, full of resentment, he couldn’t adjust his breathing all this time.

However, right at this time, this shriveled elder actually suddenly straightened his body.

He was already paralized for many years, his legs already dried up, but right now, he actually got up, his figure giving one a bit of an indescribable feeling of strangeness.

“Please listen to this elder’s words!”

“This elder is already ninety-three years old, why would I rush through the rainy night to talk nonsense and deceive everyone?!”

His throat was still releasing strange noises, but the resounding and distorted voice still transmitted outwards. “Please listen to this elder’s words, stop for five days on this hill! I…”

When he spoke like this, there wasn’t a single person who wasn’t moved. However, after speaking these lines, his voice was suddenly cut short, unable to release any more sounds.

Lin Xi’s face changed fiercely. He reached out a hand, supporting his chest.

The elder released a long breath, but he momentarily couldn’t utter any sounds. That was why the people who were closer to Lin Xi could only hear hissing sounds of breathing.

“Sir Lin, I’m sorry, this elder has dragged you down.”

Suddenly, the elder spoke these words.

His body was still leaning slightly forward, maintaining a stance of wishing to stand up. The walking stick he held in his hands reached out forward, as if he was still a bit unwilling, wishing to strike something. However, there was no more breath that came out of his mouth.

His figure seemed to have become a statue in everyone’s eyes.

Lin Xi’s heart sunk.

When he supported this elder’s chest, he already sensed that there wasn’t much warmth left on his body. This elder had already been slowly burning away the last of his life while bed-ridden, he was releasing the last bit of fiery life tonight to begin with, his swan song.

The entire hill became silent.

Many people felt as if they were struck by a great hammer.

There was nothing more powerful than this elder’s final pleas, the words he screamed out his lungs to say.

Suddenly, many people began to cry.

The human heart, is made of flesh, not stone.

Most of them didn’t recognize this elder named Chen Yangzhi, but this elder didn’t know them either. However, this elder and Lin Xi, in the dark of night, braved the downpour to come here, all to help them avoid danger.

This elder should originally be below his grandson’s knees, lying down in a warm bed, yet he was on this muddy ground, drenched in wet clothes, his breathing stopping here.

Everyone who got down the hill began to go back up.

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