Chapter 80: Intentional

“Are all high-rank cultivators able to see through my affliction with a glance?” Zu An couldn’t help but ask. If that was really the case, he wouldn’t even dare to face anyone anymore.

The still chuckling Jiang Luofu shook her head and replied, “Don’t worry, I learned about it from another source. You don’t have to worry about anyone seeing through you.”

Zu An first heaved a sigh of relief before burning rage consumed him. 

It must be that darned Ji Dengtu! He must have revealed my condition while flirting with someone else. What the hell! Aren’t doctors supposed to have a code of ethics that they’re supposed to follow?

“Cough cough, it looks like we have strayed off-topic.” In order to clear away the awkwardness in the air, Zu An quickly changed the topic and brought the focus back to his purpose here. “I don’t expect any wages or tangible benefits from my honorary teacher title. Naturally, I won’t be teaching any classes either. All I need is just an identity that’s officially recognized.”

Jiang Luofu gave the matter some thought, but she eventually shook her head. “If it had been a powerful cultivator with a good reputation who donated the 7,500,000 silver taels, I could have tried going for it. However, you should also be aware of how others view you. If I really bestow you with the title of an honorary teacher, I’ll probably get flooded with spits the next moment. Brightmoon Academy would also become the laughingstock of the country. I can’t afford to take on this risk.”

She paused for a moment before adding with a helpless smile. “Who told you to behave so unruly over the years? You only ended up  hindering yourself.”

Naturally, there was no way Jiang Luofu knew that the original Zu An was real trash, so she assumed that he had just been slacking off.

In truth, Zu An wasn’t too surprised by this outcome. It was within his expectations that Jiang Luofu would turn down his request, and he was only using this as padding for the real intention he had in mind. “If I can’t become an honorary teacher, I want you to give me a slot to participate in a dungeon then.”

It was a huge loss to spend 7,500,000 silver taels for a slot to enter a dungeon, but if he were to factor in the fact that he was unlikely to be able to cash out the debt note and that it rendered the Heiress’ Ball of Delights useless, the price was still something that he could barely accept.

If he had chosen to participate in the selections with his own capabilities, while he did stand a fair chance if he used all of the means he had, he wasn’t fully confident that he could emerge victorious. It would be all over if he were to encounter some monstrously talented prodigy from other academies or something.

This matter concerned the welfare and happiness of ‘little Zu An’; he needed guarantees. In a sense, it was like insuring for the worst. On top of that, if this sum of money could buy him the goodwill of Brightmoon Academy’s managerial team, it was still a fairly worthy deal. It had only been a few days since he had transmigrated over to this world, but it was already apparent to him that academies had an incredibly high standing in this world.

Jiang Luofu’s face darkened. “Don’t you know that the dungeons only open once every few years? There’s high demand and the slots are limited; each academy would only send out the few most outstanding students to enter the dungeon. So, prodigies have to go through intense competition in order to earn their qualification. How could I just give a slot away that easily?”

Zu An shrugged. “I don’t believe that you, as the principal of the academy, wouldn’t have at least that much authority. It’s 7,500,000 silver taels we’re talking about here. Naturally, I can’t be giving it away for free, right?”

Jiang Luofu stared at Zu An with eyes so sharp that they seemed to be able to penetrate through any lies he would spout. “What do you intend to do in the dungeon?”

“Of course it’s to search for treasures and see if I’m lucky enough to stumble on fortuitous encounters!” replied Zu An. 

He didn’t intend to talk about the Evanescent Lotus so as to not bring himself unintended trouble.

Jiang Luofu nodded. “I can see where you’re coming from. Dungeons do hold many opportunities that entice cultivators. However, the slots to the dungeons are monitored by many eyes, and the Ministry of Rites is keeping a close eye on this too. I can’t just give it away at a whim.”

Zu An immediately lost his patience, but before he could say anything, Jiang Luofu raised her hand to stop him and carried on, “Calm down and allow me to finish my piece first. While I can’t give the slot to you directly, I can still pull some strings from the dark and assign you relatively weaker opponents. This way, you’ll be able to obtain the qualification rightfully, and the academy would be able to relieve itself from pressure too.”

“Doesn’t that mean that I’ll have to fight for the slot then?” Zu An was a little hesitant about this. As much as possible, he didn’t want to reveal his trump cards to others. He preferred to be the one pulling the strings from the dark instead.

Jiang Luofu straightened up her posture and said, “I don’t know why you’ve been slacking off all of these years, but this is a world where the strong is respected. As long as you’re able to prove your worth, you’ll be able to receive high standing and ample cultivation resources. So, if you continue to lag behind the others, you’ll only be overtaken by everyone else. The gap between you and the others will continue to increase, and you’ll find it hard to catch up to them.

“I’ll be honest; I don’t really understand the rationale behind your thought process. You might have some considerations in the past, but you should know that you’re a student of our academy now. You don’t have to fear or cower before any enemies anymore. You can feel free to reveal your talents under our protection, and only then will I be justified to allocate more cultivation resources to you.”

Zu An was moved by Jiang Luofu’s words, He could sense that the latter really had his welfare in heart. However, the reasons involved in this matter were a little complicated. For one, he couldn’t possibly tell her that the old Zu An was real trash, right?

In the end, he could only change the topic with a random rebuttal, “If my enemy is the emperor, will you be able to protect me too?”

Jiang Luofu was still feeling incredibly passionate after her rousing speech earlier when she heard Zu An’s question and choked up. Her fair face immediately flushed red. “If that’s the case, I’m afraid I can’t do anything about it then. But again, who do you think the emperor is? How could you possibly have the capability to offend him?”

“I’m joking! Don’t worry about it. I’ll take your words to heart and do whatever that is needed. Alright, I think I should be heading off to class now,” replied Zu An.

Jiang Luofu wagged her finger. “Aren’t you forgetting something?”

Zu An subconsciously leaned his head forward, wondering if she was asking him for a goodbye kiss. Is my charm really that great? Well, I guess it doesn’t hurt me to give a small peck on such a beautiful face.

Perhaps it was out of instinct, but Jiang Luofu suddenly reclined backward, creating some distance between the two of them. “Where’s the 7,500,000 silver taels you promised?”

Zu An finally realized what she was referring to. With a sheepish smile, he took off his shoes, pulled out the debt note, and placed it on the table.

“…” Jiang Luofu.

With a face dripping with disdain, she picked up a brush and pried open the debt note with its tip. When she saw its content, a frown appeared on her face. “It’s a debt note?”

“With the academy’s influence and your wits, I believe that it won’t be hard for you to squeeze the money out of the Plum Blossom Sect.” Zu An laughed sheepishly. 

“I was still wondering why you would be so magnanimous as to donate so much money to the academy… Forget it. I thought that I was taking advantage of you earlier, but this assuages my conscience. I’ll help you deal with the matter concerning the slots. You should hurry to class now,” replied Jiang Luofu.

“Alright! See you, gorgeous principal!” Zu An waved his hand before sprinting off faster than a hare.

Jiang Luofu’s cherry lips curved into a slight smile as she murmured under her breath, “What an interesting lad he is.”

However, when she turned her gaze back to the debt note that was freshly dug out from the fellow’s shoes, her smile immediately froze in place. Maybe it was just her imagination, but she felt like she could smell an awful stench from it. She disdainfully stowed the debt note away before tossing the brush into the rubbish bin.

Meanwhile, Zu An leisurely strutted his way to the classroom with a light heart that was finally relieved of the boulder weighing down on it. Admittedly though, he still felt that it was a waste to give away 7,500,000 silver taels just like that.

Forget it, I’ll just leave it in the gorgeous principal’s hands for a few days as dowry. I’ll bring her back home together with my money in the future!

If anyone in the academy were to know of his thoughts, their lower jaws would surely fall slack from shock. There were plenty of men who were fond of Principal Jiang, but he was the only one who dared to harbor such thoughts.

By the time Zu An returned to the classroom, he noticed that the class had already started. The teacher was a scrawny middle-aged man with oily hair. He had a center parting that made him stand out even amidst a crowd.

Zu An discreetly snuck to his seat, but all of a sudden, there was a loud slam on the podium. “Who allowed you to enter the classroom?”

This loud slam jolted many snoring students awake. All of them quickly turned their eyes to Zu An.

Zu An thought that it was a bit ludicrous how this fellow was lashing out on him so abruptly. “You were focused on the lesson earlier, and I didn’t want to interrupt you. So, I chose to come in quietly.”

“The least you can do is to report your arrival after being late, and yet, you dare to strut in openly like nobody’s business. This is a blatant show of disrespect for your elders!” the teacher snorted.

Zu An felt a little exasperated. This teacher was blowing up a small matter for no good reason. I don’t even know him, so why is he so hostile against me?

Most students in the class were also pleased to see Zu An getting scolded. Many of them had fallen in despair as they lamented how a man like him could win the fancy of so many beautiful women whereas they were still single, so they were more than happy to see him suffer.

However, Zu An simply replied unhurriedly, “I was late because Principal Jiang summoned me over to have a word. Teacher, if you don’t believe me, you’re free to ask Principal Jiang about it.”

The middle-aged man choked up on Zu An’s words. Is this fellow trying to one-up me by bringing the principal into this?

You have successfully trolled Yang Wei for +44 Rage!

Zu An gasped upon seeing the name in the system. It finally made sense why the middle-aged man looked like this.

Yang Wei felt that there was a need to proceed carefully here. 

Is this fellow really related to Principal Jiang? I’ve never seen her getting so involved with a student’s affair before. I thought that he’s just a normal student and it would be more than easy to deal with him, so I agreed to help that fellow without hesitation. However, it seems like the matter is more complicated than I thought.

But it’s too late to change my mind now.

“Why did Principal Jiang summon you?” Yang Wei asked on, hoping to probe deeper into their relationship.

Zu An shrugged. “She’s just asking me how’s school and if I’m adapting well to school life.”

The frown on Yang Wei’s forehead deepened. “You should return for your seat first.”

Afterward, he began the lesson, but he couldn’t help but wonder just what the relationship between Zu An and Principal Jiang was. The Principal Jiang he knew of was not someone who would be so concerned with a student.

But all of a sudden, he recalled that Principal Jiang had been alone all of these years. Other than the child that was in another class, she didn’t seem to have any relatives or friends. How could she possibly be related to Zu An?

Most likely, it’s just the Brightmoon Duke asking her to take care of Zu An, so she’s just doing her part in his account. Hmph! I nearly got duped by him!

You have successfully trolled Yang Wei for +58 Rage!

Zu An was taken aback. What is wrong with this fellow? Is he really intent on going against me?

He wondered if he had offended this fellow anywhere, but nothing came to mind at all. Could it be that my good looks have seduced far too many women, and a woman whom he’s interested in is one of them?

“Boss, you’re formidable!” exclaimed Wei Suo.

“There are plenty of things I’m formidable in. Which one are you referring to?” asked Zu An.

Wei Suo shot up a thumbs up. Such extraordinary shamelessness… As expected of my boss! “Needless to say, I’m referring to how you won 7,500,000 silver taels from the Silverhook Casino yesterday. The matter has already spread all around the city, and everyone is curious to know how you managed to do it!”

Zu An laughed humbly. “Naturally, it’s due to my one-of-a-kind disposition!”

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