Chapter 48 – The District Magistrate Returns the Kindness
If Li Qingshan knew what Li Long was thinking, he would definitely praise his insight. Li Qingshan was a proper innate master, except for the fact that the Ox Demon’s Fist of Great Strength did not focus on practising qi. Moreover, he had cultivated for far too short of a period, so he could not show it.
His mind had completely submerged into the spear techniques. With his interest piqued, he flicked his wrist and produced seven blurs that blossomed like flowers. It was extremely dazzling, shaking up and thundering through the air.
Suddenly, Li Qingshan drew back the spear, and the violent gusts of wind stopped with the weapon. His muscles relaxed. “How satisfying!”
He was not a master of the spear, but it was almost impossible for him to rival true masters of the spear who had devoted several decades or even their entire lives to the art; this was regardless of his talent or how mysterious the superhuman ability was.
However, not a single master of the spear was his opponent. As long as it was a clash of weapons, the seventy-one kilogram Tyrant’s spear coupled with his ox demon’s strength could knock away anything. Splitting the webbing between their thumb and index would be a light wound. Shattering their hand or even their entire arm was possible.
This was the reason why he needed to find a heavy weapon; it would allow him to take on ten times as many martial artists with his strength alone.
After trying the spear, Li Qingshan was still not satisfied. “Shopkeeper, I need two more things. I need arrows and armour. You don’t seem to have either of those here.”
He had already decided on unleashing his full advantage. Although the Ox Demon Forges its Hide could block the punches of second-rate masters or even blades and swords from ordinary people, it probably could not stop the weapons of third-rate masters imbued with inner force. Blunt and sharp weapons were two different things in the first place.
With his strength, he would not feel burdened even when equipped with several dozen kilograms of armour, but his defences would increase significantly. Once he charged into the nest of bandits, there would be even less of a reason for him to fear their numbers.
The shopkeeper was troubled. “That’s all military equipment, not regular equipment. Normally, you can’t just buy it. Probably only the city’s arsenal has it.”
Actually, that was not the primary reason. Most of his customers were people of the jianghu. Was there anyone who roamed through the jianghu with a set of cumbersome armour on? As for arrows, there were even fewer people in the jianghu who used bows. Otherwise, with how the business was bent solely on profits and the Arsenal of Arms’ colossal backing, there was not a single thing they would not sell as long as they could make money.
Li Qingshan nodded. “Fine then. That’s all then.”
The shopkeeper said, “Hold on. May I ask for the young hero’s name? Why haven’t I seen you before?”
“I’m Li Qingshan. It’s the first time I’ve come to Qingyang city, so of course you haven’t seen me before.”
“The Descended Tiger, Li Qingshan!” The shopkeeper was startled. How could he not know about this figure who had caused quite the ruckus recently?
Li Qingshan raised an eyebrow and became determined to change the nickname. Then he visited the clothing shop to buy a nice set of clothes before settling down in the best establishment that the city had to offer.
Li Qingshan washed his face and rinsed his mouth before changing into his new clothes. When he emerged again, Li Long praised him. “Nice!”
He had changed into a set of navy warrior’s robes, revealing his wide chest and smaller waist. He seemed extremely valiant. This was just the clothing accentuating his features. After going through the killing and tough training, his aura was elated, like a treasured sword gradually being polished.
His bronze face was still not particularly handsome, but his facial features were chiseled like they were sculpted from rock. He really did match his nickname of Descended Tiger a little, radiating majesty without the slightest tolerance for slander.
At this moment, two guards from the government suddenly visited. They greeted Li Qingshan in a hurry as soon as they saw him. They were even afraid to look at him directly. They said without the slightest trace of the arrogance they would show to normal people. “May we ask if you are young hero Li? Our district magistrate invites you to visit. The carriage and horses have already been prepared.”
Li Qingshan was surprised. He had no idea why the district magistrate had summoned him. Was it to reward him for killing the bandits? He immediately agreed. Since it was the district magistrate, they would have the responsibility of repelling bandits and ushering peace to the people. If he could get the magistrate to give him some people, he would be even more confident.”
He entrusted the Tyrant’s spear to Li Long, and Li Qingshan arrived at the entrance of the government’s office with the guards. A plump figure came to receive him, grabbing Li Qingshan by the hand and studying him all over. He marvelled at him.
Li Qingshan drew back his hand uncomfortably. “Sir, is there a reason why you’re looking for me?”
“My little saviour, have you forgotten about me? In the mountains that day! The tiger!”
Li Qingshan suddenly remembered. “So that was you!”
“I’m Ye Dachuan. I’ve searched for you for a very long time. Please come in!” Ye Dachuan led Li Qingshan to the guest hall behind the government’s office, and his expression changed. “Why are you still strolling through the city?! Run quickly!”
Li Qingshan asked, “Why do I have to run?”
The advisor said, “Do you really not know what’s best for you? The people of the Black Wind mountain are searching for you everywhere. Not only do you not hide your tracks, but you’ve even appeared in Qingyang city. Someone will come knocking tomorrow to take your life.”
As he said that, he shoved a bundle of money and items into his hands. “We’ve already prepared a horse for you outside. You are welcome to rush to the Clear River prefecture. Don’t stop at all along the way. Here’s a letter. Take it to the prefect’s office and just hand it to the district magistrate’s… Ouch!”
Ye Dachuan stepped on the advisor’s foot. “That’s what I was going to say. I’ve already gotten my younger sister to put in a few words to the prefect, so you’ll be guaranteed a wealthy future. No matter how powerful the people of the Black Wind mountain are, they won’t be able to chase you there.” Then he sighed. “Originally, I wanted to keep you around as a sheriff so that you could assist me and quash out some more bandits. Cough cough, the reinforcements that I’ve requested for never arrived. They’ve probably been delayed on the way. It’s just too remote here.”
The advisor thought, The prefect probably wants you dead for good, so why would he send you anyone?
Originally, Li Qingshan found this funny. Ye Dachuan was short and fat, and he wore a large set of official’s robes. He was extremely similar to one of those wretched officials portrayed in novels and operas. Out of all of these characters, the better ones would just be mediocre people, while the worse ones would harass the kind-hearted.
However, seeing how he eagerly paved a path for him, he was touched. No matter how many crafty crooks there were in the world, there were still people who knew to return the favour.
When he came down from the mountains, all he thought of was how to uproot the Black Wind stronghold and slaughter them all before settling the debt of insult with the young master from the Dragon’s Gate sect. The face reflected the mind, so he was teeming with a murderous aura. If this went on, his cruel, murderous side would definitely possess him completely.
However, Li Long constantly assisted him due to being from the same village, while Ye Dachuan earnestly tried to return the kindness of saving his life. Whilst these two people were not particularly good or righteous, both just the most ordinary people among the crowd, it was exactly them that allowed him to see that human nature was not all evil.
Li Qingshan clasped his hands. “Thank you for your kindness, sir Ye. There’s no need for you to refer to me as saviour. You can just call me Qingshan. However, I haven’t come this time to run away!”
“You’re not running?” Ye Dachuan was furious. “Kid, you have no idea how anything works. Do you know how much risk I took on for you to get a government position?”
The advisor tried to persuade him as well. “Yeah, you’d better run quickly!”
Li Qingshan laughed. “I can run, but the Crouching Ox village can’t. And sir Ye, you can’t run either, can you? Since I’m brave enough to remain here, I have some confidence in myself.” He opened the bundle and saw some silver pieces inside. He picked them up and crushed them leisurely.
The eyes of Ye Dachuan and the advisor widened as they watched the silver ooze out from Li Qingshan’s hand like mud. They were not people of the jianghu, so how could they have seen martial arts before? Their evaluation of Li Qingshan immediately climbed even higher. Ye Dachuan hesitated. “With your skills, perhaps you really might be safe as long as you remain in the city. I’ll go see a few other people for your sake. Let’s hope the Black Wind bandits won’t attack the city.” He wanted Li Qingshan to stay very much. Once that happened, if any aristocrat dared to look down on him, he could send Li Qingshan to beat them up. By then, he could ask for whatever amounts of silver he wanted.
Li Qingshan said, “Sir, you said you want me to be the sheriff?”
“Yes, yes, yes!” Ye Dachuan smiled from ear to ear. He had already begun imagining the power and prestige he would possess in the future when he ran about freely with Li Qingshan.
Li Qingshan said, “Then I must request sir to gather men and horses and open the arsenal. I’m willing to face the Black Wind stronghold and eliminate the greatest threat to Qingyang for you, sir.”