Legend of the Great Saint
Book 1, Chapter 50
The time was right and the guests had all arrived. Ye Dachuan stood up and offered a toast, first saying a bunch of words like “This official is greatly honored everyone could come” that one said at such occasions. Then he went straight to the main topic, his face revealing an expression of indignation and grievance:
“I invited everyone to come today regarding a great matter of life and death concerning my Suncheer City. Correct, it’s indeed about the Black Wind Camp, this great tumor. The Black Wind bandits are extremely vicious and utterly evil, guilty of monstrous crimes. They snatched a lot of silver…cough, killed who knows how many honest folks.”
He felt extremely angry toward that group of mountain bandits who had unexpectedly even more money than himself. He hurried changed what he was saying after the adviser kicked him under the table.
“And now they even want to massacre the Crouching Bull Village. In my identity of the patriarch official of Suncheer City, what else would I have to tolerate if I had to tolerate this? Everyone must have heard of the one beside me. Tiger Descending the Mountains! Li Qingshan!”
He especially put heavy emphasis on the nickname of resounding fame “Tiger Descending the Mountains,” making Li Qingshan’s eyes twitch.
“This official has presently named this young hero constable of the whole of Suncheer City. He not only killed the Black Wind Camp’s third boss and several dozen bandits with his own hands, now he also wants to exterminate the whole Black Wind Camp. I invite everyone to pay out money and efforts to facilitate this matter. Only then it wouldn’t be a waste of those kind intentions, only then would it not let down the conscience of heaven and earth.” So saying he drained his cup of wine in one gulp.
Suncheer had no soldiers the county magistrate could dispatch. Even bailiffs were old, weak or disabled people idling their days away. But those great houses and great families had high walls and big yards one and all, with many servants and guards. As a result, Suncheer City’s public security was maintained in large part by this great Iron Fist Gate faction. To deploy an army, one could only borrow men from those noble families. Each family only needed to send four or five men to reach county magistrate Ye’s expectations.
The noblemen couldn’t keep drinking anymore. They looked at each others. Was this county magistrate for real this time?
To want money was normal, which county magistrate didn’t want money when they took office. But to want men wasn’t normal.
The first few county magistrates had made a show of leading a group of men for a trip around the mountains after receiving the money, but the magistrates coming after them didn’t even put on any pretense and only said that the timing wasn’t right. As to when the timing would be right, only the heavens knew.
There was an uproar upstairs the restaurant. The nobles didn’t even want to fork out the money, not even mentioning men. In case of injuries or death they’d need to spend more money to appease the families, and they’d even offend this group of disciples in exile at the Black Wind Camp.
Who even knew where the Crouching Bull Village was. Destroyed or not, what was it any of their goddamn business. The Black Wind Camp wouldn’t come to kill them anyway. As to children from other families, well there was no shortage of them.
A nobleman around forty to fifty years old possessing a virtuous and prestigious appearance said: “Lord Ye, we all understand your solicitude for the common people. We also can’t watch and not do anything, we have to at least make some contribution. However, it’s impossible if you want us to send out men. And even if we agreed, the guards wouldn’t agree, don’t you think so?”
He clearly indicated his position in a subtle manner. Since you have some strength right now, we can collect a little money for you as a gesture. You just take this money and keep honest, don’t come make trouble for us.
I actually collected some money! Ye Dachuan felt a little incredulous, he really wanted to pinch his thigh and check whether he was dreaming. He’d been fishing left and right ever since he became the county magistrate, but no one ever took him to heart and they hadn’t paid out even a single tael of silver.
Success always came too suddenly. Ye Dachuan calmed down his mood and exchanged a look with Li Qingshan as he started to think whether he should quit while still ahead.
Li Qingshan frowned. He didn’t blame those country nobles for regarding nothing but themselves. The heart of ordinary men were like this for the most part. Added to the way the previous county magistrates had conducted themselves, it was already unusual for them to willingly pay out money. There was no need to force them if it wasn’t possible to borrow this strength. He said: “Then we offer many thanks to all of you…”
“Dad, you can’t give him money!” Thump thump thump. A young man walked upstairs and ferociously stared at Li Qingshan.
Li Qingshan immediately remembered. This was the young man he’d met racing through the streets today, who’d knelt down and given him the purse. How did he suddenly become so bold, was it because he relied on the adults present?
The middle-aged nobleman chided: “Don’t play the fool, this isn’t a place for you, go downstairs!”
But the young man didn’t retreat, haughty self-satisfaction written on his face: “My apprentice brothers came!”
“People from the Dragon Gate Sect came!” Some noble shouted, their voice filled with joy.
“My family’s kid is learning martial arts there!”
“That’s right, mine too!”
The nobles whispered to each others with happy expressions. Someone was fortunately sticking out for them so they wouldn’t need to pay out this silver.
Li Qingshan’s face suddenly became chilly. The insult he suffered that day on the mountain path rose again to his brain.
A group of people winded upstairs. Some were young and some were old, each and every one of them clothed in white and wearing a sword. Gathered together, they were seriously awe-imposing and stuck fear in the heart of men, acting as if they were alone in the world.
Their leader was precisely the Dragon Gate Sect’s young master, Yang Jun.
“My lord magistrate, you entertain every party to a banquet. Only the Dragon Gate sect was left out, could it be that you don’t take us seriously.” Yang Jun’s glance swept around. He slightly nodded when he saw Liu Hong, barely amounting to a greeting. His eyes lit up when he saw Li Qingshan, then an incomparable hatred exploded on his face: “You were indeed here, it’s made it easier for us to find you!”
“You’re looking for me?” Li Qingshan felt a little curious. Looking at the opposite side’s expression, it seemed as if he himself were the one who’d deeply offended the other party instead. But in any case he wouldn’t let them go lightly since they sent themselves to his door right now. It was only unfortunate he didn’t have the great spear with him, otherwise he’d have liked to see how many people would die once he swept the spear their way.
“I only regret not killing you with one strike of the sword the first time. Today I’ll make you spit out everything you’ve eaten.” Yang Jun looked at Li Qingshan as if watching his most hated personal foe. He’d immediately flown into a rage as soon as he learned that Li Qingshan had taken the spirit ginseng away.
He’d narrowly let the spirit ginseng slip away, and it ultimately fell into this country hick’s hands. It was said that the spirit ginseng couldn’t be so easily digested, but a great amount of medicinal quality would inevitably have been wasted away after so much time. Otherwise, how could a country bumpkin possibly have the strength to kill the third boss of the Black Wind Camp. This all should have been his originally.
In his eyes, Li Qingshan was an extremely despicable and hateful thief who’d stolen away his belongings. How could he not gnash his teeth in hate. He definitely had to make mincemeat of Li Qingshan.
Ye Dachuan stood up hurriedly: “Young hero Yang, let’s talk amicably if you have things to say. Qingshan is this county’s constable, how can you threaten him and scream murder.” He saw the Dragon Gate Sect come in all aggressive, everyone holding a sword, and had become timid at once. As the saying went, it was difficult for two fists to face a crowd. No matter how high Li Qingshan’s martial learning, how could he block everything in the confusion of sword stabs.
Yang Jun said with a somber face: “Lord magistrate, this man stole something extremely important from my Dragon Gate Sect. Today we’ve come to arrest him and bring him to justice, so please don’t stop us. Otherwise you should be careful, swords are blind.” Then he ordered without waiting for an answer: “Get him!” His arrogance and despotism had reached the peak as he smiled insidiously: “Don’t kill him, I’m going to slowly interrogate him about the thing’s whereabouts.”
More than a dozen people pressed forward. The nobles split into two sides as they crashed out of the way, while the magistrate and adviser ran off. At the great round table, there was only Liu Hong left sitting at ease as he leisurely nursed his wine.
There was only Liu Hong who knew best about Li Qingshan’s strength. One could have somewhat outlined the relation between the Iron Fist Gate and the Dragon Gate Sect from Yang Jun’s attitude right now. The Iron Fist Gate walked the way of the lower classes, widely accepting disciples from the streets, while the Dragon Gate Sect walked the way of the upper classes, its sect disciples children from wealthy families for the most part.
Although it couldn’t be said that they were incompatible like fire and water, they’d still never seen eye to eye. So he definitely wouldn’t say any word to warn them, he was more than willing to see some people from Dragon Gate Sect die off, especially that arrogant and despotic Yang Jun who had no respect for him. At the same time, he was also guessing at what that “important thing” could be? It seemed he had heard some rumors.
The one standing in front of the Dragon Gate Sect group was a tall and thin swordsman with a greenish face. His eyes were also filled with vicious enmity as he looked at Li Qingshan. It was precisely Chi Da. He’d greatly lost face in the sect after Li Qingshan broke up his sword tip on the mountain path, and then he’d been punished by the suzerain after going back. The hatred for Li Qingshan had also reached the very limit inside his heart and he was in a hurry to cut off a hand of his.