Chapter 34 - Prestige of a Master
The day after Cai Zhongpu surrendered, several police vehicles stopped by the Emerald Antique Brook and retrieved the painting from the Song Dynasty. There was also a silver van that stopped on the corner of the Old Street, where there would be people watching in shifts. The Emerald Antique Brook was already closed, and Cai Yan was hiding in the Three Flavour Hall.
The medicine room was large, and under Su Tao’s arrangements, he built four guest rooms. Worried that Cai Yan would be in danger by herself in the Emerald Antique Brook, he had strongly insisted on her moving to the Three Flavour Hall.
Living together with Cai Yan, it had also flipped a new chapter in his life. Just think about the temptations behind the additional pink bras and underwears hanging on the clothesline.
The other rooms were prepared for Xiao Jingjing and the other two. They could choose to stay in in the future, extending the opening hours of the Three Flavour Hall since several long-time customers complained about the early closure.
Cai Yan’s emotions calmed down after two days, and her shoulder wound had also formed a scab. So by the time Su Tao woke up, he would be assaulted by a fragrance that came from the kitchen with Xiao Jingjing standing beside Cai Yan in a loss; cooking had been her responsibility in the past.
“You don’t have to wake up so early.” Su Tao glanced at the clock. It’s still 5:50, that meant that Cai Yan woke up at 5, at the latest.
Cai Yan filled a bowl of congee and passed it to Su Tao. “I can’t sleep anyways, so I woke up early to make breakfast. You offered me shelter, so I can’t be doing nothing every day.”
Wang Peng took a mouthful of the egg cake and smacked his lips. “Big Sister Yan, you don’t have to do anything in the future. If Master doesn’t want to keep you, I’ll keep you.”
Xiao Jingjing frowned before she spoke in a stern voice, “What nonsense are you speaking?”
Wang Peng knew that Xiao Jingjing was reprimanding him for being rude by teasing Su Tao. He took a glance at Su Tao and felt relieved when he didn’t see any response. “Oh, right. Master, I and Zhao Jian have decided to be your disciple. We won’t even need the intern salary, so please accept us. If you refuse, we’ll keep pestering you about it!”
Su Tao’s mood was pretty good today, so he glanced at Wang Peng and Zhao Jian before nodding his head. “The intern salary will still be provided, and I will accept the both of you as my disciples. But it’s not so easy in my Three Flavour Hall. Both of you must work hard to learn. Otherwise, I will throw both of you out!”
Wang Peng was initially saying it casually. He never thought that Su Tao would actually agree to it. Immediately, he pulled Zhao Jian and did an acceptance ceremony, which Su Tao accepted.
The reason why Su Tao did not want to accept them right from the start was that he was worried that they wouldn’t have the patience and willpower. So wouldn’t he waste his effort if they gave up in the end?
Cai Yan smiled when she saw that Su Tao had accepted two new disciples. “Su Tao, should I become your disciple as well?”
Wang Peng immediately waved his hand. “That can’t be done, the seniority will be messed up!”
Cai Yan blushed. “What’s messed up? I don’t know any medical skills, nor do I have the talent in it. So I’ll just be dragging you guys down, forget about it.”
Xiao Jingjing lowered head and knitted her brows. When Zhao Jian saw this, his face revealed disappointment.
Su Tao pondered before saying, “Cai Yan, since the Emerald Antique Brook has stopped operating, you can help out as a cashier if you’re bored. The Three Flavour Hall has been getting quite busy lately, so you can help out.”
Cai Yan knew that Su Tao did not need her to work; he just didn’t want her thoughts to go wild when she had nothing to do. “I dare to guarantee that you will not lose a single cent when I’m the cashier.”
Su Tao smiled. “Heh, if your performance is good, I’ll give you a raise.”
Cai Yan gaze roamed around. “The treatment’s enough that you provided me food and a shelter to sleep in.”
Seeing that everyone had pretty much finished their breakfast, Cai Yan swiftly tidied up the table while humming a tune, then entered the kitchen. Looking at her slender silhouette, Su Tao inwardly sighed. Although Cai Yan might appear cheerful on the surface, he knew that she was in deep pain in her heart. Su Tao had put lots of effort to treat her illness, which had gotten serious due to Cai Zhongpu’s situation.
Treating Cai Yan was tougher than treating Vera. Cai Yan’s illness came from the heart, which she had to depend on herself to resolve it. External help could only alleviate her pain, but it didn’t treat the roots.
As usual, Su Tao brought his disciples to practice the Pulse Art outside Three Flavour Hall at seven. He first led them in a cycle of Pulse Art before letting them do it in parts while he advised from the side. Occasionally, he could put his fingers on their acupuncture points, allowing them to feel the essence of that particular move.
Back then, when he started practising the Pulse Art, he had reached a small success in it, which caused a bodily fluid evaporating feeling to come from his acupuncture points. It was just like running, where one would be covered in sweat after the session.
However, the three of them were clearly inferior to himself. They had practised it for about ten days, and they still couldn’t achieve it. In the end, Su Tao had to personally guide them to feel the qi circulating in their bodies.
After he finished his breakdown explanation, he got them to perform it once again. Ten moves later, Su Tao smiled when he saw a redness rising from Zhao Jian’s head; it was the sign of qi gathering.
The Pulse Art wasn’t the same as ordinary martial arts. Martial arts gathered qi in their dantian, while the Pulse Art gathered them in their acupuncture points. Upon reaching a small success, one would have qi showing on some acupuncture points, not the dantian.
As a member of the Basketball Team, Zhao Jian’s athletic nerves were developed, so he was the first to break through the threshold. Eighteen moves later, Xiao Jingjing was the second, and Wang Peng was slightly worse. There weren’t any signs even after twenty moves.
“Master, why do I feel a comfort in my body?” After finishing the Pulse Art, Zhao Jian had clearly sensed his changes.
Su Tao smiled. “You and Xiao Jingjing have reached a small success in the Pulse Art. In the future, you guys probably need about… Six months to reach the second stage.”
Back then, when Su Tao learnt the Pulse Art, he only used two days. But naturally, the three of them were weaker than him, so Su Tao did not set any high standard for them.
To reach the second stage, they would have to store qi in seventy-two acupuncture points that were involved by the twenty moves. It wouldn’t be an easy task to achieve.
“What about me? When can I reach a small success?” Seeing that Zhao Jian and Xiao Jingjing had succeeded, Wang Peng felt a little disappointed in his heart.
Su Tao held his chin and pondered for a long time before answering, “You can continue to practise the Pulse Art. But, I feel that you should focus more on distinguishing herbs; your talent lies in there.”
Su Tao wasn’t just making a half-hearted comment. Although Wang Peng’s athletic nerves were developed, his five senses were more sensitive than most others. So if he became a qualified herbal physician, his future achievements would be higher.
Hearing Su Tao’s encouragement, Wang Peng immediately slapped his chest. “Then, I’ll focus on herbal medicines!”
Su Tao intended to teach in line with his disciples’ abilities. Zhao Jian focused on acupuncture techniques, Wang Peng on herbal medicines and Xiao Jingjing would study everything. It was something that Su Tao had decided after gauging them for ten days.
At about 7:30, there would be people coming to the Three Flavour Hall to buy herbs. So Su Tao briefly arranged the workload, and the Three Flavour Hall started their business for the day.
Su Tao had been getting the three of them to practise with the acupuncture model while allowing them to watch how he treated his patients. Occasionally, they would personally experience what the acupuncture feels like under his help.
Xiao Jingjing was surprised since there would be patients with all sorts of illnesses. However, Su Tao’s treatment for them was all within the acupuncture manual that he had written for them.
The apple never fell far from the tree. Xiao Jingjing realised that despite Su Tao’s young age, his skills were at the level of starting his own sect to teach. He was even on a level higher than Tang Nanzheng. Although Tang Nanzheng’s skills were excellent, it was due to his rich experience and reference to the medical books. He did not create any treatment techniques unique to himself.
The papers that Deng Ming and Di Yuan looked at with contempt as being beneath them were essences of Su Tao’s diagnosis and treatments. Figuring this out, Xiao Jingjing felt even more surprised. Everyone would have a little selfishness, but not Su Tao. He had given those valuable materials to the two of them unconditionally.
After treating a patient with a throat illness with the help of Xiao Jingjing, Su Tao suddenly declared, “Starting tomorrow, you will be responsible for the consultation. I will not interfere with them.”
He had noticed that Xiao Jingjing was accurate and seasoned with her needles. She was already qualified to start with diagnosing.
Xiao Jingjing’s face was written with disbelief as she doubted, “Can I do it?”
Su Tao nodded his head. With a complicated flash in his eyes, he gently rolled up her sleeve. “Even if you want to practise your acupuncture techniques, there’s no need to be impatient!”
Everyone else thought that the reason why Xiao Jingjing wore long sleeves on such a hot day was due to her being conservative. But the reality was that she was just trying to hide the marks on her arm. It turned out that Xiao Jingjing would spend a lot of time practising acupuncture, and when she got a sense of it, she even use herself to test it out!
Su Tao massaged her acupuncture points. She was accurate with her needles, but irritating her acupuncture points often would cause side effects, so he was just trying to help her ease them.
Xiao Jingjing’s skin wasn’t considered fair, but her skin was tender and soft to the touch.
Sensing the warmth of his touch, Xiao Jingjing’s heart surged for some reason. She never thought that her Master would be the one that understood her the most, seeing through her thoughts.
Su Tao retracted his hands and ordered, “Your acupuncture technique can be considered as making a foothold. In the future, as you continue to practise, you will advance in them!”
According to Su Tao’s estimation, Xiao Jingjing’s acupuncture technique was firm, she only lacked experience. This was the reason why he gave her the duties of taking over the consultation work.
Xiao Jingjing nodded her head. She soon thought of a matter, so she fished out a stack of money from her bag. “These are the sales for the Beautifying Cream.”
Su Tao waved his hand and smiled. “Haven’t I told you the last time? You can have it all.”
Xiao Jingjing’s face flushed red. “I cannot take it!”
Su Tao knew that Xiao Jingjing was prideful deep in her bones, so he could only use another method to convince her. His brows suddenly furrowed and put on a stern face. “If I tell you to keep it, then keep it. Are you not going to listen to the words of your Master?”
Xiao Jingjing was stunned before she restlessly stored the money. “Okay, Master.”
Seeing that Xiao Jingjing was frightened by him, Su Tao felt pretty good, so he kept the expression. “In the future, my instructions must be strictly followed. I do not like a sloppy person.”
When Su Tao left the consultation room, Xiao Jingjing’s gaze turned complicated before she sighed and murmured to herself, “What’s with the sudden change of face? Master is weird sometimes, changing his mood instantly without any warning. I couldn’t understand him.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter