Chapter Two Jade Stick
Blurred like a fantasy, the lights floating, Dong Fu was just as beautiful at night as it was in daytime.
The lanterns on the two sides of the street gave off bright and gentle light. From the sky, there were the barks and squeals of the ling beasts and the lights coming off the flying talismans which were even more attractive than a meteor shower. The cool night didn’t lessen the people, but made it even more busy. The merchants all gathers sufficient energy and the shop workers in each store wore uniforms as they stood on either side of the door, one person holding a copper bell, one person holding an eight-divination mirror.
The worker holding the copper bell sent out a spell and a clear voice spread out from the copper bell: “This store sells talismans, all kinds of talismans at great prices. Whether or not you are a lianqi apprentice, or a skilled jindan, this store can fulfill your needs……”
Engraved on the copper bell was a Clear Sound Incantation. The voice was mild and moderate, and definitely wouldn’t be harsh on the ears. Even if it was heard for a long time, the listener wouldn’t be bothered.
The worker with the eight-divination mirror cooperated beautifully and had made out a spell at the same time. The eight-divination mirror flashed and above his head, holograms of different started to flash, realistic and moving. And as the sound of the bell changed, the holograms above his head changed as well like a stoplight. This was a mirage spell, producing illusions and tricking others to thinking it was real.
If it was two stores that faced each other, a frequent scene was the workers from both stores glaring at each other, the bells swinging rapidly, the lights of the eight-divination mirror also flashing.
The same scenes were occurring on all around the street.
“Fifth-grade Secret Paradise. Has one lingspring, five hundred ping , full of ling energy. No matter for raising animals or planting ling grains or grasses, we guarantee you have a good harvest! Two million fifth-grade jingshi. Don’t miss it, it won’t come again!”
“This store is selling all kinds of high-grade ling herbs. Thousand year old store, quality is guaranteed! All of the medicine of this store has been inspected by high-level medicine professors in the Tian Xin School of Medicine! Please don’t worry!”
“Do you want to get into Yi Zi Hui Sword Sect? This training center takes in students all year round, passing on all kinds of beginning spells. Personal lessons by experienced sword xiu  of Yi Zi Hui Sword Sect. Guaranteed to pass the first time! Why are you hesitating? Come try! Those who register now will receive fifteen percent off!”
This was the city with no night, the primary town Dong Fu!
Zuo Mo wasn’t unfamiliar with this prosperous primary town, but he wasn’t used to it. He didn’t come often. If he hadn’t brought a flying paper crane, it was hard to even make a trip to Dong Fu.
Even the most beautiful street would have an intersection. Zuo Mo stared dazedly. He was lost.
Damn it, lost again!
He hit his head in frustration and hurt.
Helplessly, Zuo Mo walked to a banyan tree and lifted his face. On the branches, he saw many small red birds. The little birds were entirely red and had long crimson tails. When they flew, it was like there was a stream of fire behind them so they were called Flaming Birds.
They were intelligent and psychic. They could understand human speech and were good at learning. Many cities used them as road signs and direction. However, it wasn’t a free service.
Zuo Mo bore the pain as he threw one piece of first-grade jingshi. A flaming bird spread its wings and swooped down from the tree, accurately catching the jingshi and swallowed it into its stomach.
“Free Market.” Zuo Mo shouted.
The flaming bird flew a few circles around his head below heading in one direction.
Zuo Mo hurried to keep up behind the bird. The flaming bird didn’t fly very quickly. The long tail feathers threw off red light that glowed brightly in the night.
The red light spread out in the air and quickly disappeared. Passing through the lantern-lit streets, quietly listening to the calls of peddling, quietly looking at the holograms changing at the two sides of the street, and thinking about how he felt when he had opened his eyes two years ago, unconsciously, Zuo Mo became silent.
He sighed in his heart and a slightly sorrowful mood pervaded.
The clear call of the flaming bird startled him awake. When he saw the free market not far away, his mood lifted. The flaming bird circled a few times around and turned to leave with a trail of red glowing dots behind. Zuo Mo waved his hand at the leaving flaming bird.
The free market was the most common place for low-level xiuzhe. The so-called free market, it was due to the fact that anyone could put up a stall and set things. They only had to buy a Mini-Room, and pay some fees before they could freely sell. The price of a Mini-Room was much lower than a store front. Usually when the Mini-Room was collapsed, it was only palm-sized and easy to transport. Many xiuzhe would buy one to carry around. Then they didn’t have to worry about where to sleep when they went out.
Buying here was much cheaper than normal stores but one had to spend time to find them.
The free market was like a gigantic weiqi board, divided into squares. Each square could hold ten Mini-Rooms which were arranged five back to back with another five.
Very quickly, Zuo Mo found his goal.
“Oh, Mo ge, you came!” The store owner was a male about twenty seven or eight. He had a pointy head, his two eyes moving rapidly. He was call Fu Jin. His potential was average and he didn’t have much interest in cultivation. Right now, he only was on the third level of lianqi, so he decided to start a business. He was skilled at managing and had a variety of roads. He basically had everything, no matter if it was low-level talismans or some spells. He could get all of them.
Zuo Mo didn’t waste words: “Did what I want arrive yet?”
“Of course, of course!” Fu Jin patted his thin chest and laughed: “What Mo ge wants, I don’t dare not to do my best!”
Finishing, he started to dig through a little pouch at his waist. Zuo Mo looked with red eyes at the small cloth pouch at Fu Jin’s waist. The little cloth bag might be nondescript, but it was a third-grade Thousand Treasure Pouch.
But very quickly, Zuo Mo’s eyes were attracted to that small objected held in Fu Jin’s hands. A piece of blue-green jade, about one finger wide, two knuckles long. It was a jade stick.
“But Mo ge, don’t blame me for not reminding you. This ling plant jade stick has five kinds of five element spells. However, not many can learn all of them.” Fu Jin said seriously; “With Mo ge’s third level abilities at [Little Art of Rain and Cloud], why don’t buy a water spell jade stick? Don’t be irritated at my chattiness. But I’ve seen a lot these years and understand some. One ability is enough to overcome all.”
Zuo Mo solemnly responded: “Many thanks, Fu ge.”
The other was looking out for him. He knew that.
Seeing Zuo Mo still resolute, Fu Jin didn’t continue. He handed the jade stick to him: “Already said the price, twenty pieces of second-grade jingshi.”
Zuo Mo straight-forwardly gave the jingshi.
Twenty pieces of second-grade jingshi was a significant piece of business. Fu Jin’s mood improved and he smiled, teasing: “If Mo ge can learn all of it. Hey, then become a ling plant farmer. That treatment. Hey, don’t forget to help out this brother then!”
Zuo Mo also chuckled and raised his hands together expressionlessly: “Thanks, Fu little ge for the words. For ling plant farmers, it has to be at least having three kinds of spells at the third level. It isn’t that easy.”
The two finished their transaction in happiness.
The majority of the jingshi on his body left but Zuo Mo didn’t feel any pain. He carefully put the jade stick next to his skin. This was a treasure.
After purchasing the jade stick, Zuo Mo prepared to return to the mountain. Even though travelling at night was slightly hard, but if he stayed overnight at Dong Fu, he would need to spend money again.
Without the ling grains, Xiao Huang seemed to become lighter and nimbler as it carried Zuo Mo and wheezed as it flew in the direction of Wu Kong Mountain.
When he returned to his residence at Wu Kong Mountain, it was deep in the night.
Under the stars, Zuo Mo laid on the roof, his entire body aching. His fingers grasped the jade stick in front of his eyes. He narrowed his eyes, his mood unspeakably content.
At this Sword River prefecture, there were many people that farmed. Like Wu Kong Sword Sect, about seventy percent of the outer sect disciples would choose to farm when they choose their tasks. The sect would also give out some methods of farming. [Little Art of Cloud and Rain] was one of them. But the sect only gave out the most basic. Wu Kong Sword Sect was a sect for sword xiu. They had many sword arts, but the amount they had on any other arts were pitiful.
Farming was a deep and vast topic. Zuo Mo, who had continued as an outer sect disciple for two years, had a deep understanding of this.
The jade stick included five types of five element spells. They were all spells relating to farming. One of those included was [Little Art of Cloud and Rain.] When he saw this, the stone in his heart landed. Worth it! The elaboration inside the stick about [Little Art of Cloud and Rain] was more comprehensive than what he knew and even more profound.
Fu Jin wasn’t wrong. Being a master at one thing was more realistic.
But Zuo Mo had his own ideas.
If he could learn all five kinds of the five element spells and if three kinds reached the third level, he could become a ling plant farmer. If [Little Art of Cloud and Rain] hadn’t broke into the third level, he wouldn’t have had the idea. But since he could comprehend the third level of [Little Art of Cloud and Rain], that should that he had a bit of a talent at five element spells.
If he had given up all the ling grains to exchange for contribution points from the sect, he could receive somewhat of a good sword manual.
But he didn’t do that. What did he need a sword manual for? To chop wood?
In comparison, farming spells were more useful. Even if he didn’t learn all of them, the more he learned, the more abilities he had. The sect didn’t have much, but uncultivated ling fields were everywhere. With enough ling fields, he could grow more ling grains, and get more jingshi.
Thinking and thinking, Zuo Mo’s head became clearer and his drowsiness disappeared.
He sat up and reached out with his palm to touch his face. The muscles on his face were solid and hard like wood. This was why he never had any expression.
He didn’t care about beauty, he cared about another matter.
The faint starlight fell in the yard, giving out a slight silver shimmer like the night mist which rose. Sorrow rose in the eyes of the expressionless Zuo Mo.
Two years ago, when the head of Wu Kong Sword Sect was returning to the sect, he had found an unconscious Zuo Mo and took him back to the sect. From when he woke up, he found that his memory was blank. In the following two years, he tried all the ways he could but couldn’t find any hints of his memories from two years ago.
He found the part about him that was strange. It was his face. Frozen like a stone. He could not make any expression. The sect leader said it possibly could be a rare kind of affliction. Because of this face, he wasn’t taken in by the other disciples at the beginning and had received quite a few wrongs.
But he didn’t dislike this face of his. It was one of the only two links he could find. Maybe one day, this wooden face could remind him.
Who am I……where is my home……
The other link was the dream that always appeared. Whose voice was that? And what he must not forget?
But he forgot everything!
Sighing in his heart, he shook his head as though he was shaking all those thoughts from his head. He carelessly took up the sound tablet beside him and input ling energy in.
The sound tablet was one of the most popular talismans in this xiu world. It was made up of a base and a round jade tabled. There were seal arrangements and it could receive sound transmissions from large scale seal arrangements. Zuo Mo’s sound tablet was one of the most simple. A base made out of cedar wood holding a jade tablet the size of a palm. After putting in ling energy, the surface of the jade tablet shone and flickered though a multitude of colors and a melodious voice came out.
“ Bloody Sky Metropolis  Jie once again breaks out in fierce conflict. Twelve xiuzhe camps simultaneously suffered large scale attacks from yaomo, fatalities are serious.”
“Zhou Ding Sword Sect has found another new jie. The exploration has already found large amounts of jing veins. According to those familiar with the matter, there are more than fifteen sects that have sent out high-level xiuzhe at the same time. Additionally, as there are a high amount of aboriginals on this jie, industry xiuzhes predict that this could cause the prince of xiu slaves on the market to drastically decrease……”
“After slaying famous high level master Xi Mo Da of the yao race, the Xi Shang Sword Sect of Xi Shang Jie has forged the life feather into a flying sword. Today, the flying sword has finally come out of the forge. It is rumoured the energy of the sword when it came out expanded ten miles. High level experts from forging sects estimate this Gold Feather Sword has reached an astounding seventh-grade~ The Xi Shang Sword Sect has a new weapon!”
Under the stars, Zuo Mo listened silently. When he had just woken up, this rough sound tablet had helped him gradually understand this world.
And it was from that time that he developed the habit of listening to the sound tablet everyday.
When his mood was bad or jittery, he would open the sound tablet and listen silently. His mood would then calm down.
In the dark sea of the night, the stars shone and a zombie quietly sat on top of the roof and listened to the sound tablet, spellbound.
 金丹: the fourth major stage of cultivation.
 坪: one ping is 3.3 square meters.
 修: shortened form for xiuzhe
 都天血: Du Tian Xue. The order is metropolis sky blood. But the reason for the name makes it Bloody Sky Metropolis Jie.
 妖魔: yao and mo are two different things. Yao could be considered equivalent to spirits, and mo to demons. They are put together as yaomo because they are both enemies of xiuzhe but they aren’t one entity.