Chapter 13: Divine Physician Ji
Barely a few seconds after arriving at this thought, Zu An’s expression darkened once more. A curse had been put on this lousy body of his, such that he could do nothing even if a beautiful woman were to leap into his embrace.
Recalling what Old Mi told him, he turned back to the young man beside him and asked, “Shouping, are you familiar with the Master stage?”
“Everyone in the Zhou Dynasty knows about it. Is young master unfamiliar with it?” Cheng Shouping looked at Zu An with a bewildered look.
Zu An nearly choked on that. He quickly replied, “Of course I am familiar with it! I was just testing you!”
“I see!” Cheng Shouping widened his eyes in realization. “Masters are able to draw raw ki from the world freely, allowing them to soar freely in the sky. They are top-notch figures in this world.”
Zu An was astonished to hear that. “How many Masters are there in our Brightmoon City?”
“How many?” Cheng Shouping looked as if he had just heard the joke of his life. “None at all!”
“Ah?” Zu An was stunned. Brightmoon City looked pretty big to him, so how could there not be even a single Master here?
“Putting aside Brightmoon City, I doubt that there are any Masters in our entire Linchuan Commandery!” Cheng Shouping exclaimed. “You should know that in the Zhou Dynasty, only the Three Dukes, Grand Marshall, General of Swift Steed, and a few Kings are Masters. Given how few Masters there are around, so how could we have any in our Brightmoon City?
Following that, Cheng Shouping began to explain how one’s position corresponded to one’s cultivation level in this world, raising waves of shock in Zu An’s heart. Old Mi was making fun of me! There are only that many Masters in the world. Even with the help of the keyboard, I would have been a withered old man by the time I reach the Master stage. Not to mention, he doesn’t even know that I have a cheat key with me. Just where did he get the confidence that I would be able to reach Master stage?
While Zu An was still deep in thought, he suddenly noticed that Cheng Shouping was staring at him with a look that seemed to be saying ‘be patient with the mentally challenged’, and this left rage fuming in him. “You sure know quite a lot, don’t you?”
Cheng Shouping was smiling so brightly that his facial features almost seemed to be squeezing together. “Young master, you’re flattering me.”
“You are a cultivator too?”
Cheng Shouping’s smile froze momentarily before he lowered his head gloomily and replied, “That’s not it. My lacking talent in cultivation prevents me from sensing raw ki.”
Zu An nodded slightly. “Idle people like you sure know how to live life well. You’re so knowledgeable despite being unable to cultivate.”
You have successfully trolled Cheng Shouping for +33 Rage!
Zu An pondered for a moment before asking, “Are there any extremely skilled physicians or the sort in Brightmoon City? The kind whose reputation has spread far and wide.” This won’t do. I’d have already turned into an old man by the time I reach Master stage through the conventional way! I need to find some other means instead.
Since this was a world of cultivation, there had to be miraculous physicians capable of pulling off the impossible around. Perhaps they would be able to resolve the problem he was facing.
“Extremely skilled physicians? Ah, there is one!” Cheng Shouping seemed to enjoy the process of providing answers to others and resolving their doubts. “Divine Physician Ji is Brightmoon City’s… No, to be more accurate, he’s the most skilled physician in the entire Linchuan Commandery. There’s no illness that he can’t treat!”
“Ji? He can’t possibly be Ji Xiaolan, right?” Zu An asked.
“Ji Xiaolan?” Cheng Shouping scratched his head in confusion. “He isn’t.”
Zu An’s interest was sparked. “Let’s go then! Bring me to him!”
Cheng Shouping looked at him in confusion. “Young master, weren’t you whipped by the Second Miss just a moment ago? No matter how I look at it, you should…”
Zu An’s eyes swam about as he quickly spun up a lie. “I’m visiting Divine Physician Ji to have those wounds treated!”
“But our estate’s physician has already applied medicine for young master earlier. You’ll recover with a few days of rest. There’s no need for you to look for Divine Physician Ji,” Cheng Shouping replied.
Black lines streaked across Zu An’s face as he replied, “Are you the young master or am I the young master? Why do you have so much nonsense? All you have to do is to bring me there!”
“Young master, please be appeased. I’ll bring you there right away!” Cheng Shouping quickly put on a fawning smile once more.
Zu An was a little surprised. For him to not get mad with this, it seemed like this lad had a good temper. Now that he thought about it, the Rage points he received from insulting this lad earlier was also a fairly small amount. Perhaps the years he had spent in the Chu Estate had built up his tolerance.
Zu An quickly changed his clothes before leaving the estate with Cheng Shouping. He was initially worried that he wouldn’t be able to leave the estate, but surprisingly, while the guards at the entrance did spare him a second glance, they didn’t stop him from leaving.
He thought about the incident that happened the previous night and asked, “Where is the First Miss?”
“The First Miss appears to have gone out,” Cheng Shouping replied.
Zu An heaved a sigh of relief. For some reason, he felt great pressure facing that pair of master and servant. “Speaking of which, do you know Snow?”
Cheng Shouping’s eyes lit up. “Who doesn’t know Sister Snow? She’s the personal attendant of the First Miss! Not only is she beautiful, but she has a sweet voice as well. There are countless people in the estate who views her as their dream lover. Young master, if you don’t mind, can you help bring us together?”
“You’re talking nonsense again.” Zu An was rendered speechless. Where did this fellow get the confidence to court Snow? “Don’t bother thinking of such useless stuff. Do you have any information concerning her? For example, has she been working in the Chu Estate from a young age?”
“Ah, she didn’t.” Cheng Shouping was a little depressed to hear Zu An rejecting his request to help pair him and Snow together. It looks like the young master is interested in Snow too. I heard that the personal maidservants of large clans are usually given to the groom as concubines. “Sister Snow was saved and brought to the Chu Estate around three to four years ago. She’s obedient and intelligent, so she quickly won the First Miss’ favor and became appointed as her personal maidservant."
“Obedient?” Zu An was cognitively incapable of associating that sharp-tongued lass with that word. He fell into deep thoughts after hearing that she had only joined the Chu Estate around three to four years back ago.
“Other than that, do you know the circumstances surrounding the second branch and the third branch? How are their relationships with my father-in-law’s branch?” Zu An thought about what had happened earlier today in the ancestral hall. He sensed an inexplicable enmity coming from Chu Tiesheng and Chu Yuepo.
“Still fine, I guess,” Cheng Shouping replied contemplatively. “The second old master spends his days managing the arms trade whereas the third old master manages the salt trade. They are the close aides to our old master.”
“Arms? Salt?” Zu An was taken aback. This was the world of cultivation! Even if they weren’t managing the spirit stone trade, they should at least be rearing demonic beasts or that sort of fantasy stuff. Why were they dealing with… such ordinary commodities?
As if having guessed Zu An’s thoughts, Cheng Shouping explained, “Young master, you shouldn’t underestimate these two commodities. They can bring about massive profits for the family. It’s through these two commodities that our Chu clan managed to build up a fortune that even rivals that of a country. You should know that there are only a small number of individuals who are privileged to be able to cultivate in our world; most people are ordinary mortals like us, unable to sense the raw ki in the air. Arms and salt are necessities that we can’t do without in our daily lives.”
Zu An clicked his tongue in annoyance. “What do you mean by ‘we’? Don’t lump me together with ordinary mortals like you. I am someone who can cultivate!”
Cheng Shouping blinked his eyes at Zu An, looking as if he was going to say something yet hesitating about it. He felt that the young master was really as the rumors put him out to be—utterly inept yet boastful.
However, it doesn’t matter. He’s the young master after all. I’ll help him win the First Miss’ heart. There’s no gratitude greater than one who delivers charcoal in a snowstorm. If I help him while he’s still down, he’ll view me as his confidant when he finally makes it big. Once that happens, I’ll naturally rise through the ranks. Perhaps, I might even be able to get together with Snow… Teehee~
“What are you laughing foolishly to yourself for?” Zu An smacked Cheng Shouping’s head. “Where’s Divine Physician Ji’s residence?”
Cheng Shouping quickly supported the two buns on his head to keep them in place. “Young master, you mustn’t hit my head. It took me a lot of effort to comb this hairstyle!”
Zu An looked at the two cha siu bao-like objects sitting atop Cheng Shouping’s head, and he shook his head speechlessly. “Enough. Hurry up and lead the way.”
He had already gained a rough understanding of the situation in the Chu Estate. He still hadn’t uncovered the culprit who was plotting his death yet, but what was more important right now was to resolve the problem plaguing the lower half of his body first!
“Young master, I think you need not look for Divine Physician Ji anymore,” Cheng Shouping quickly ran up to Zu An as he spoke.
“Why is that so?” Zu An was bewildered by that remark.
Cheng Shouping explained, “Divine Physician Ji has established a rule saying that anyone who seeks consultation with him has to pay 100 silver taels as consultation fee.”
“100 silver taels just for a consultation? That’s daylight robbery!” From what Zu An had seen and heard over the last two days, he came to realize that the currency in this world was similar to that of ancient China. A thousand copper coins was equivalent to one silver tael, and ten silver taels was equivalent to one golden tael.
There was still another currency that was more valuable than gold, and that was ki stones. However, ki stones were hard to come by, so it was difficult to quantify its value.
However, the unit of measurement in this world differed from that of ancient China; it was similar to the modern world instead. One tael was equivalent to 50 grams. The purchasing power of silver here was still fairly high as its value hadn’t depreciated due to overproduction. A silver tael was worth around 1800 RMB.
To pay 100 silver taels, which was equivalent to 180,000 RMB, just for consultation was ridiculous. It was no wonder Zu An would kick up a fuss!
Zu An pondered for a moment before putting his arms around Cheng Shouping’s shoulders. “Lil’ Pingping, I’m a little short on cash at the moment. Can you do me a favor and help me this once? I’ll pay you back with interest once I get the money.”
Cheng Shouping silently grabbed the sachet hanging by his waist for security. “Young master, I’m a mere servant. If even you don’t have money, how could I have any?”
Zu An had noticed Cheng Shouping’s subtle movements, but he didn’t pay any heed to it. Even if Cheng Shouping had some money on hand, it was unlikely that he would have 100 silver taels. “Do you know if there’s anywhere in Brightmoon City that sells slaves?”
“Young master, are you referring to the slave market? There’s a place in the city for nobles to trade their servants and maids, and they are usually worth from a few to tens of silver taels…” Sheng Shouping said. A moment later, he suddenly froze in place. He turned stiffly to look at Zu An and gulped down a mouthful of saliva. “Young master, you can’t be thinking of selling me, are you?”
Zu An’s expression immediately turned solemn. “How is that possible? What kind of person do you take me to be?”
Zu An felt that Cheng Shouping was at most only worth a few silver taels. Besides, he was a servant of a Duke’s estate, so it could be difficult to sell him out.
Despite having received Zu An’s reassurance, Cheng Shouping still felt a little unnerved. He quickly said, “Young master, there’s actually another way around this. Aside from paying 100 silver taels, you can also get a consultation with him by accomplishing a task for him.”
Those words put Zu An’s heart at ease. He slapped Cheng Shouping’s shoulders and remarked heartily, “You should have said that earlier! I nearly sold you just now!”
Cheng Shouping: “…”
Looking at Zu An’s excited profile, Cheng Shouping found himself at a loss for words. One must know that the tasks set by Divine Physician Ji couldn’t be accomplished by just anyone. Nevertheless, out of fear of getting sold, he refrained from telling the truth.
Not too long later, the two of them arrived by a residence. Looking at the crowd gathered outside the residence, Zu An gulped down a mouthful of saliva. “Why are there so many people around?”
Cheng Shouping laughed sheepishly as he replied, “Didn’t I tell young master earlier? Divine Physician Ji’s place is always swarming with people.”
Zu An thought about those specialists in top-notch hospitals in his previous life, where one had to make an appointment a month ahead of time in order to have a consultation with them. Considering this, it was only natural for Divine Physician Ji’s business to be booming too.
Wait, this isn’t right either. Doesn’t a consultation cost 100 silver taels? Are the people of this world that rich? But these people gathered around are dressed quite shabbily, and it doesn’t seem like they are well-to-do.
“Where is Miss Ji? Why is Miss Ji not here?” Someone amidst the crowd shouted, and it immediately stirred a commotion.
“That’s right, we want to meet Miss Ji!”
Zu An was stunned to hear all that. He turned to Cheng Shouping and asked, “The Divine Physician Ji you were referring to is a girl?”Previous Chapter Next Chapter