Chapter 372: Master Wei's Disciple's Provocation!
Everyone took their seats.
Everyone looked for their own spots.
Zhang Ye went to a small table in the back. "Teacher Su."
"Nicely done Teacher Zhang. Your few poems were enough to stun everyone." Su Na said jovially. She was not a bigoted person. She usually did not have the bearing of a Peking University teacher, and would joke around if necessary. "I have something I want to ask of you."
Zhang Ye sat down. "Go on."
Su Na said, "Can you give me the upper half of your couplet?"
Zhang Ye threw up his hands. "They have already been taken by President Wu. You can ask it from her."
"So you are agreeable to it? If you agree to it, I'll go over. Anyway President Wu likes poetry, and is probably not as interested in couplets, but my father likes it." Su Na said.
Zhang Ye smiled and said, "It's for Uncle Su? Sure, no problem."
Su Na said happily, "Then it's settled. Thanks!"
At this moment, Master Zhou looked around and his sights landed on Zhang Ye. He waved at him and said, "Young lad. Haha, come over to the main table."
Everyone was stunned!
The main table was for masters. Typical calligraphers were not qualified to sit there!
Master Wei also invited him. "That's right. Young man, come over. You have the qualifications to sit with us."
How could Zhang Ye go over? He immediately said, "Thank you, Masters. Thank you for thinking so highly of me, but I don't dare to impose, so I really won't be going over."
Wu Zeqing said, "Since he wants to sit over there, let him be. Let's eat."
A calligrapher in his forties was curious as he asked, "Old Wu, where did you get to know this person? Why have I never heard of him before? Does anyone know him?"
"It's also my first time seeing him."
The others also glanced at Zhang Ye.
Wu Zeqing said with a faint smile, "I'm sure you all know him. As for who he is, let me keep you all in suspense for the moment. Isn't everyone hungry? If not, I'll be the first to dig in!"
All of us know him? It can't be!
Master Zhou roared with laughter. "Right, let's eat first."
Mr Feng, who had previously participated in the competition, said, "Little Wu, don't say anything else. Please give me that 'Lady Yu, the Royal Beauty', if not, don't think of getting a gift from me."
Wu Zeqing smiled and said, "Teacher Feng, you are depriving me of a beloved item."
Mr Feng snorted. "I lost to a junior and have lost all my face. How can I not get some benefits? So it's settled, that piece of calligraphy is mine!"
Wu Zeqing smiled and said, "I'll think about it."
Mr Feng stared. "What's there to think about? You scammed all us old fogeys, and we haven't even settled scores. If we knew your teammate was so good at poetry and his calligraphy being so good, why the heck would we even try to compete with him!" They had really lost quite unjustly. They had lost based on literary skills.
Wu Zeqing said helplessly. "Alright then. 'Lady Yu, the Royal Beauty' is yours."
Mr Feng drank a mouthful of wine happily. "That's more like it."
With that, Mr Wang also spoke, "'The Lavishly Decorated Zither' is mine!"
"I want that 'Mourning Day'. Haha, I like those ominous poems. Old Wu, you have to forgo your love. Later on, I'll write a piece of calligraphy to exchange with you." Another calligrapher said.
So in a short while, all of Zhang Ye's poetry had been handed out, leaving not a single one with Wu Zeqing.
It was very common for calligraphers to exchange calligraphy pieces, not to mention that these were the original poems written by Zhang Ye for the first time. They had their value as collectables. Everyone knew this youth would one day amount to something. If he were to one day become a Master, these poetry's value would increase tenfold, maybe even a hundredfold.
When Chen Mo, who was sitting at the third table, heard the conversation at the main table and saw how Zhang Ye's poetry was so popular, his frown tightened.
A youth secretly said, "Wu Zeqing brought someone to mess things up!"
Another youth added, "It's too much. This is our teacher's birthday. Not only did he win the auspicious item that our teacher wanted, he even smacked the faces of so many teachers. What is he doing?"
The first youth said, "Senior brother, you must seek justice for our old master!"
These were all Master Wei's disciples.
Chen Mo's expression looked certain as he whispered, "Watch me!"
The banquet began.
The second segment also began.
Someone came over, "Master Wei, let me offer you a toast."
Another youth came over, "Big Sis Wu, happy birthday."
A few people came over, and took out the birthday presents they prepared. Someone gave Master Wei an ink slab, while someone gave Wu Zeqing a roll of painting he drew.
More and more came forward to give their birthday wishes.
Master Wei and Wu Zeqing had a rewarding trip as they received many things.
"Master Wei, this is a lowly work of mine. I wish you a long life."
"Thank you, you were so thoughtful."
Suddenly, Master Wei's most valued disciple, Chen Mo, stood up. He walked towards the main table and said with a laugh, "Teacher, he who teaches me for one day is my father for life. Thank you for all the guidance and teachings you have given me over all these years. I know you are not lacking in anything, and I can't produce anything nice to give to you. The only thing I can give you is the calligraphy I have learned under your years of nurturing. Today, I wish to write something for you. I wish you would be able to appraise the results of my learning!"
He was quite eloquent.
Master Wei stroked his beard and nodded with a smile. "Great! This present suits my taste!"
Master Zhou was also quite interested. He instructed people to set up ink and paper. The platform was in the middle, so everyone could see it. People, who were eating upstairs, could lean over the window to see it.
"Little Mo is planning on writing calligraphy?"
"Let's take a look."
"Little Mo is one of the most talented disciples of Master Wei."
The surrounding people put down their chopsticks and began to watch the lively scene while smiling and chattering.
Chen Mo held his brush and closed his eyes for a moment. Suddenly they opened his eyes and landed the brush on the Xuan paper. He was holding a small brush, so was it possible that he was writing a long poem?
Zhang Ye also looked over.
"As expected of Master Wei's disciple."
"He's not worse than that youth in shades from before!"
The crowd gave their praises by the side. As for Master Wei's other disciples, they also stood by the side cheering on their senior brother.
However, when the first line was written, someone exclaimed and then felt his heart pounding. This...
It was a folk song poem! This kind of poetry was rarely seen! And it was a folk song poem that no one had seen before. Clearly, it was a work created by Chen Mo himself. The creation of a folk song poem was much more difficult than ancient poems or melody poems. Firstly, it was rare, and secondly, it was difficult to grasp. It was too difficult to write one well as it required extremely deep ancient knowledge of literature! It was unknown how long Chen Mo had prepared for this, but this showcase made everyone astonished!
Master Zhou congratulated. "Old Wei, your mantle has an inheritor."
Master Wei said with a smile, "Little Mo is still far from that."
"Far from that? I think it's not much further. He will definitely be better than you in the future. Haha." Master Zhou and Master Wei were old friends, so it was very common to engage in banter.
The poem was very long.
A folk song poem was finished.
However, when everyone read the poem's content carefully, they were all stunned!
Chen Mo's folk song poem actually told a story. It mentioned an unsuccessful man in ancient times. He kept trying to pass the imperial examinations to gain fame, but his wife kept obstructing him, wanting him to go into business. The man refused, but his wife relied on her better family conditions, and began to preside all decisions of the household. In the end, the family business collapsed, causing the two of them to sleep on the street. In the end, the man succeeded in the examinations and became an official, while the wife become subservient towards him from then on, following his every word. Midway, the text even used words similar to 'only women and small-minded men are hard to deal with'.
The story was average. It was written like standard feudal period texts. As for a moral, there was none. It seemed to be writing about Chen Mo himself. Men had to stick to their ideals and goals, never listening to women. However, this story would not be anything in any other occasion, but in today's occasion, there was a problem, what more, a big problem! Not only was Master Wei celebrating his birthday today, but it was also Wu Zeqing's birthday!
What's the meaning of this?
Only women and small-minded men are hard to deal with?
Women should not be in the limelight? They should stay at home and just focus on assisting the husband and bringing up the children?
It was a story that said women should not do anything! And in the end, it even said that the wife down and out, while the husband was high and mighty? Who were you trying to repress!? What sort of status did President Wu have!? Only you dare to make such things up!
Chen Mo put his brush down. "I'm done writing."
The atmosphere seemed to momentarily freeze. No one present was an idiot!
Master Wei's face first turned sullen. "Insolence!"
Master Zhou did not praise Chen Mo either. He frowned and glanced at Wu Zeqing.
Wu Zeqing hung a faint smile on her lips but did not say a word.
Su Na could not stand for it. She stood up furious, "Chen! Who are you scolding!?"
A calligrapher's female family member said angrily too, "Who said women are inferior to men!? What sort of society is it!? To think you wrote such a feudal era ideology!"
Another woman said, "What sort of folk song poem is this!? To write us women to be completely good for nothings? What the heck do you mean, Little Mo! Do you look down on women?"
Chen Mo smiled and said, "I don't have those intentions. It's just a folk song poem. Some of the words are just referenced, and not what I personally believe. I'm just emulating the writing style of the ancients."
A group of woman began chattering. They could not stand for this!
Chen Mo ignored it. He knew he would definitely offend many people today, but he didn't care. He only respected Master Wei. Wu Zeqing had thrown his teacher's face, so as a disciple, he had to help win his teacher's face back. He thought Master Wei was just maintaining his bearing just now by speaking, but did not mean that he was not angry. Hence, Chen Mo produced this text, hoping to win the face from before back. He would not let Wu Zeqing win the competition, face, and auspicious gift and leave. He had to make her lose face!
They were not Zhang Ye's match!
But now, it was not a literary competition. Chen Mo was trying to settle scores!
Zhang Ye looked at Chen Mo and the folk song poem. He was truly infuriated. When everyone helped the old master bully Wu Zeqing in numbers, Zhang Ye was not truly angered. He knew everyone did not have the true intentions of bullying her. However, the meaning behind what Chen Mo wrote was different! This was clearly trying to embarrass Wu Zeqing! This was clearly trying to take revenge!
You are courting death!