Chapter 284 – Destiny with the Buddha
Xiao An walked out of the formation in confusion. The surroundings were hazy as the sounds seemed distant before gradually clearing up.
She could clearly see Li Qingshan’s concerned face and clearly hear his worried voice. “Xiao An! Xiao An!” Gradually, she eased up again, and the remnants from the depths of her memories settled once more. She revealed a smile.
The surroundings had fallen dead silent. The female instructor was pale-white. She understood just how much trouble she was in this time. The child was much more complicated than she seemed.
With the limelight stolen away from him, Chu Tian said, “There’s nothing impressive about that. If I wanted to, I could do that too.”
The instructors responsible for guiding the Qi Practitioners returned to their senses. It seemed to be time for them to take everyone to go eat.
An old man with a face full of wrinkles appeared out of nowhere. He said gently, “You must be Xiao An!”
Li Qingshan shivered inside. He felt an aura as heavy as the ground itself from the old man. A Foundation Establishment cultivator!
The instructors bowed in a hurry. “Sir school leader, what brings you here?” They too had seen quite a few prodigies stand out during the elemental affinity test, but the various schools would only begin their contention over these prodigies once the tests were complete. Never had the leader of a school appeared at a time like this, let alone the fact that it was earth elder Huang, the most composed out of the leaders of the schools.
Earth elder Huang completely ignored the others. His eyes remained fixed on Xiao An. He bore the special, amiable smile that a senior would show to a junior, treating her with great warmth. He became more satisfied with her the more he looked at her.
“Come, try this. I planted it myself.” He reached into his hundred treasures pouch and pulled out a great handful of peanuts, directly shoving them into Xiao An’s hand.
Han Qiongzhi was stunned. Since when was this old man so generous? He was actually giving away the spiritual fruits he had tended to in his garden with great effort over several years.
Xiao An raised her head and glanced at Li Qingshan.
Li Qingshan could also see the spiritual energy within the handful of peanuts. There were at least ten times more powerful than pills like Qi Gathering pills. The benefits offered by a Foundation Establishment cultivator would probably come with greater costs than what met the eye.
Hua Chengzan shook his head with a bitter smile instead. Earth elder Huang was known to be as patient and settled as the earth. Never had he seen the earth elder behave in such an urgent manner throughout his time in the academy. But clearly, this child was enough for earth elder Huang to behave like that.
He considered himself to be a prodigy, but in that moment, he could only acknowledge her superior talent. No wonder Haitang wanted her regardless of the cost.
Just, just what are the origins of this child?
“Senior, please tell me what you want my Xiao An to do! Please be straightforward!”
Only at this moment did earth elder Huang seemingly notice Li Qingshan. Under the radiance of a supreme prodigy, not only did others pale, but even their presence seemed to become non-existent.
“This is the leader of the school of Agriculture, earth elder Huang. Why don’t you greet him?”
“Greet my ass!” A voice erupted. The person was still extremely far away when they uttered the first word, but they had already arrived nearby by the last. The slovenly daoist priest roared at earth elder Huang, “Old brother Huang, where’s your composure as a school leader?”
“The entrance examination still hasn’t ended. This isn’t in accordance with the rule of the academy,” Liu Zhangqing said in a sunken manner. Clearly, he was unhappy with being played.
Earth elder Huang took a puff of smoke. “I already have a foot in the grave, so does respect mean anything to me at all? As for rules, they’re set by humans.” He looked back, and his face became amiable again. “Child, as long as you join my school of Agriculture, you can eat these kinds of fruit whenever you want. What do you think?”
“The school of Agriculture?” Liu Zhangqing snickered. He removed a twin fish jade tablet from his waist. It flickered with light, actually a supreme grade spiritual artifact. He said nothing, but the disdain on his face explained everything by itself. Move aside, you broke ass. Intellectuals aren’t so easy to just walk over.
Earth elder Huang snorted out of anger too, emitting a stream of smoke from his nostrils. However, his gaze towards Xiao An only became even more amiable and kind.
“The school of the Military is about certain success when attacking, certain victory when fighting, about wind, forest, mountain, and fire, about invincibility.” Han Anjun would produce a great quake with each step, making the ground shake. The bearing he gave off made him seem like an entire army.
“The path you must walk must be one of the ancient cultivators. Please listen as I explain the reason in detail…” Ma Yuyi said with great sincerity, but why would anyone let him explain in detail?
“Namo Amitābha. Child, you have destiny with the buddha. Really. Buddhism monks don’t tell falsehoods.”
The slovenly daoist priest stamped his foot. “It’s all bullshit!” But now, no matter how loudly he cursed, no one paid anymore attention to him.
In the blink of an eye, the various leaders of the schools appeared one by one. Perhaps cold, perhaps amiable, or perhaps violent, the various powerful auras clashed on the square with great intensity. Their only target was Xiao An.
The school leaders embroiled in a contest as they constantly increased the benefits they could offer, describing the better future they could grant to her. At that moment, just the supreme grade spiritual artifacts that Li Qingshan saw were several in number. He also heard quite a few glorious deeds and stories regarding the accomplished seniors of the various schools.
Unfortunately, this contest did not last for too long. It quickly devolved into a war of pulling the rug and digging up dirt.
“Tending to the statues of buddhas and passing her later years in solitude? Master, do you really plan on destroying her life?” Liu Zhangqing said tersely.
“Child, this sir Liu has over a dozen concubines, and he even visits brothels regularly.” The One Thought master spoke the slovenly daoist priest’s mind, launching this verbal trump card.
The corner of Liu Zhangqing’s eye twisted.
“The school of Confucianism is full of hypocrites!” “The school of Yin-yang is completely useless!” The school of Agriculture is full of bumpkins!” The school of Military warps human nature!” All of these abuses that they had kept repressed in their hearts erupted.
A while later, the eyes of the various school leaders all reddened from anger.
The One Thought master unfurled the monk robes he had just put on again, revealing the ripped upper half of his body.
Li Qingshan stood beside Xiao An, so he was also surrounded by them all. He felt uncomfortable. Were these the leaders of the various schools? Sure enough, they were each stronger than the last, but their demeanour was horrid. They were like a group of wretched hounds fighting for food.
Yet, it just so happened that he could not even rival any of these wretched hounds.
The Qi Practitioners that were relatively closer were all pressured by the aura. They all staggered backwards before directly collapsing on their bottoms.
Everyone was dumbfounded. Just what was going on?
Wu Gen said, “Brother Hua, what are we supposed to do?”
Hua Chengzan’s responsibility was to maintain order during the entrance examination, but all he could do was shake his head when confronted with this group of disorderly people. “Let them be!”
Xiao An glanced at Li Qingshan again.
“Li Qingshan! Do you still remember me?” A desolate coldness descended. Li Qingshan suddenly turned around. “Old- commander Wang!”
Wang Pushi stood with his arms crossed nearby. He did not partake in the contest. He walked over.
Li Qingshan’s impression was that this Scarlet Hawk commander did not seem to be on particularly good terms with him. He knew the reason for this extremely well too. Although knowing the reason was completely useless, he still raised his guard.
Wang Pushi patted his shoulder firmly and laughed aloud. “Impressive, kid! It has been so long since I last saw you, and you’ve already reached the sixth layer! I haven’t misjudged you!”
Li Qingshan grinned. You haven’t misjudged me? You’d better think about why again.
“This is enough for you to be promoted to Scarlet Wolf guard. As long as you cultivate a little in the school of Legalism, there’s a great chance for you to become the future Scarlet Wolf commander too!”
“Thank you for your care and concern, commander Wang. I’ll definitely work hard so that I don’t let you down, commander!” If Li Qingshan still could not tell what he was hinting at, there was no point in him living for so long anymore.
Wang Pushi chucked inside. This time, it’s me, old Wang, who has gained the advantage.
The school leaders immediately responded. They looked at Li Qingshan together. Dammit, how did we forget about how the child was brought here by this kid? She’ll definitely listen to an adult like him with how young she is!
The slovenly daoist priest tried to save the situation in a hurry. “You have to think about it clearly!”
The One Thought master said, “Exactly.”
As the various gazes landed on him, Li Qingshan immediately felt the pressure multiply. He sighed gently and crouched down, asking Xiao An, “Are there any schools you want to go to?”
“I want to stick with you!” Xiao An ignored the gazes in the surroundings and said gently.
Wang Pushi smiled even wider. According to the rules, no one could forcefully interfere as long as this child had made her decision. Even if they wanted to interfere, they would have to ask him, Wang Pushi, first. Moreover, there was the Hawkwolf Guard behind him.
Li Qingshan smiled. “That’ll be a little difficult. You know I can’t handle those buddhist scriptures!” He stood up, brought his hands together, and bowed. “One Thought master, just as you have said, Xiao An has a destiny with the buddha. Please accept her into the school of Buddhism to cultivate!”
From a certain perspective, the Path of White Bone and Great Beauty was a buddhist ability. She constantly read the various buddhist scriptures and sutras to deepen her understanding of this ability. Now that this opportunity had presented itself, he obviously could not let her miss it. In her hands, even the Strength Talisman of the Guardian Kings would be unleashed with extraordinary power, so if she learnt even more greater buddhist techniques, just how powerful would they become?
And, during the contest earlier, the conditions that the One Thought master had offered were extremely impressive in order to express his sincerity. As her guardian, he had to choose a path most suitable for her.
The One Thought master was slightly surprised before ravishing in joy. Originally, he thought there was no chance for him to succeed. The school of Buddhism was one of the better major schools within the academy, but they were nowhere close to the schools of Confucianism and Legalism in terms of the number of disciples they possessed. Their numbers paled in comparison to their old rival, the school of Daoism, too.
After all, most people possessed various kinds of desires, with young people in particular. Just how many people were willing to follow the precepts, rendering all vanities void to comprehend the unsurpassable buddhist dharma? Not to mention that Xiao An was still a little girl, which made the chances of success even more meagre.
But never did he imagine that the tables would turn in the end, giving him what he wished for. He brought his hands together and bowed back at Li Qingshan. “Indeed, indeed. Sir, your wisdom truly blazes like a lantern. She does possess a destiny with the buddha. This is not a lie. Everything follows the buddha’s arrangements.”
Li Qingshan thought, If the buddha really knew about Xiao An’s existence, he’d probably slay her in the very first instant. He saw how Xiao An frowned rather unhappily, so he comforted her and said, “Don’t be like that. We’ll both be in the academy. We’ll have plenty of chances to see one another.”
Xiao An would never object to him, and she also knew that he did this for her sake, so she nodded gently. “Alright.”
The One Thought master smiled in relief. It was all over now. “Sirs, thank you for going easy on me!”
Wang Pushi’s complexion immediately coldened, turning into a face without mercy. He shot a glare towards Li Qingshan sternly before leaving in a flash.
Li Qingshan understood that it would be rather difficult to be promoted now.