Chapter 246: Farewell
Translator: Translation Nation Editor: Translation Nation
Crown Prince Palace
The snow had stopped and the clouds were dark, but not heavy. The sunlight pierced through the layer of clouds and shone down upon the land. The Crown Prince looked somewhat tired but had ordered for meals to be served. A hot pot boiled as steam rose out from it.
When Pei Zi Yun returned, the Crown Prince was somewhat surprised, but laughed, "It's good that you've returned, we can have the meal together. Men, get him a place to sit!"
Pei Zi Yun didn't decline the invitation as he sat at a table and picked up a cup, poured some wine into the cup and gave it to the Crown Prince, who accepted it. He looked down and saw that it had been filled to the brim with red wine, he drained the cup in a single gulp. When the Crown Prince finished, he placed his cup down and sighed, "It can be said that we are living luxuriously and comfortably now, but we still have to abide by so many layers of rules and customs. In order to prevent gossip, I shan't pour a cup for you. You have to pour your own wine. We still have to obey the rules, I'm rather upset by it."
"Many years ago, when I was younger, my Emperor Father would take our whole family to the hall where we would sit on the floor and watch warriors perform. They would fight before us, while we drank wine and conversed. We were so happy!"
"But we're in the present and no longer in the past. We're not the royal family!" Pei Zi Yun poured himself a cup of wine, and spoke, "Actually, this humble servant has returned to inform you that of his departure."
"What? You're leaving?" The Crown Prince stood up abruptly, which caused his cup of wine to topple and crash to the ground, the cup shattered, as wine and fragments of porcelain scattered everywhere.
The Crown Prince ignored the broken cup as he grabbed Pei Zi Yun's hands, "Did someone offend you and that's the reason for you to leave?"
"Who would dare to? I shall sentence him to death!"
After getting the much-needed assistance of Pei Zi Yun, King Lu had been defeated time after time. Now that he heard Pei Zi Yun wanted leave to depart, the Crown Prince refused.
"Crown Prince, King Lu has sustained severe damage to his campaign and everyone has their eyes on his every action. Your Majesty is completely different, and looks like you're winning. This humble subject is a Daoist, how would it look if I constantly visited the Crown Prince's Palace?"
"This is the most important reason."
Hearing these words, the Crown Prince froze as Pei Zi Yun changed the topic, "Although King Lu has taken huge damage, you shouldn't force your advance too quickly. Instead, just maintain the status quo for a little while longer, and that would be to your advantage."
"It seems like the grand scheme of things has been settled. Regardless of how much more capable King Lu is, it would be hard for him to come back from this set back. The Crown Prince shouldn't worry too much."
The Crown Prince listened attentively to Pei Zi Yun as he paused, before he released Pei Zi Yun's hands, "But, why are you leaving today?"
Pei Zi Yun sighed, "Crown Prince, this humble subject is a Daoist. What reason can there be for me to constantly visit the house of an official, much less the Crown Prince? Since I've decided on departing, it's better I do so earlier rather than later."
"If the Crown Prince has an order, this humble subject would surely obey the command. A Daoist has to stay some distance away from the secular world in order to refine his mind and cultivate. This is my duty."
The Crown Prince finally regained his senses as he realized that Pei Zi Yun was only helping him in order to achieve peace within the nation. Now that the difficult time has passed, he would return to his own place.
"You've helped me greatly, and I shan't shortchange you. Men, retrieve the gold for me." The Crown Prince then poured a cup of wine for himself as Pei Zi Yun picked up his own cup and drained it. Without any ceremony, Pei Zi Yun retrieved the gold bills from the eunuch.
"Many thanks for your generosity Crown Prince." Pei Zi Yun bowed as he spoke, "Take care, Crown Prince."
As his words landed, Pei Zi Yun strode off. He stepped in the soft snow across the yard and disappeared into the long roads after a short while later. The Crown Prince didn't have any mood to continue his meal, as he looked at the gorgeous view with snow layered across the land and sighed, "He's truly a Daoist!"
Grand Princess Palace, Peach Garden
There were several peach trees within the small island in the palace, it was much warmer within. The little Canton Princess held onto the qin.
The warm springs within the ground were steaming. As soon as the hot steam touched the cool air, it became mist. The entire scene resembled a mythical land, as they stood beside the lake. The serving maid listened carefully as the Canton Princess plucked the strings of the qin and was enthralled.
The sounds of the qin were faint, subtle, and had joyful undertones to it. A bird flew overhead before it landed on the peach tree nearby. Perched atop a branch, it listened to the Canton Princess play her musical instrument. The granny maid then spoke proudly, "Her qin skills are becoming much better."
The granny maid then continued, "The little Canton Princess is like the Prince Consort, so talented. The way you play the qin reminds me of Lord Prince Consort."
"Who says so!" The Grand Princess sighed as she fell into silence for several moments, "I just wish she wouldn't be like her father."
All of a sudden, everything fell into absolute silence, nobody dared to breathe a word.
At this point, another granny maid walked towards them with hastened footsteps, "Grand Princess, Pei Zi Yun has come to say his farewells."
"Have you handled the matter I've told you to the last time?" The Grand Princess picked out a single grape and ate it as she asked.
"Grand Princess, the matter has been handled. Everything is in order, and we have two oxcarts for it." The granny acknowledged.
"Invite Top Scorer Pei in."
"Yes, Grand Princess!"
Moon Viewing Gallery
Pei Zi Yun walked over and scrutinized the building, he realized that it was extremely neat and clean. It was two stories of red pillars and walls and the tiles were brown wood. Many lanterns hung on the beams. Looking down, the entire peach garden came into view. The sun shone down upon the building, and the table was filled with grapes, dates, peanuts, and other dried fruits.
Pei Zi Yun sighed comfortably, "It was snowing so heavily yesterday, but it's so warm and comfortable here, just like heaven."
"This used to be the residences of a government official. However, it's been rumored that after he adjusted the layout of this place, something bad happened and he was stripped of his title."
"I've invited several people to this place and they've ascertained that there was nothing wrong with the geomancy of this place. It flowed with the wind and in the right direction of the river. This was a perfect place, maybe too perfect. Hence, no ordinary person would be able to live here, thus his family was broken up and calamity befell his offspring." The Grand Princess spoke.
"Geomancy?" Pei Zi Yun laughed, "Every career would boast that they're able to change lives. The lower the status of the profession, the bigger they would boast."
"Geomancy is just but a small path to traverse on."
"Oh, you know about geomancy as well?" Grand Princess asked curiously.
"I know a little." Pei Zi Yun picked up a red date as he spoke slowly.
"The previous dynasties had written several volumes of renowned books on geomancy with many good discussion topics. There's also a reason this piece of land might not be good for some people. For example, this mansion used to be the residence of an official from the previous dynasty. The officials within the Imperial Court were all extremely wealthy at that point in time, yet the owner still wasn't satisfied, he wanted to move up another level and was very greedy."
"When word got out, and rumors started spreading, the Emperor wasn't pleased. When the Emperor was displeased with him, the backlash of the Emperor's displeasure was thus upon him. The backlash was so immense, since it involved the Emperor, that the geomancy of this place was unable to protect him. Hence, he got into trouble, had his titles stripped, and his family killed."
The Grand Princess heard this, her eyes lit up.
"The lands are vast and many issues remain unknown to us, yet I am not deceived. If the geomancy of a location was superb, can he ever be more powerful than the Emperor?" Pei Zi Yun had never known anything about geomancy. However, after he acquired the memories from the Daoist of the previous dynasty, he was familiar with many theories and the terminology. All of a sudden, several words appeared within his eyes.
Novice, intermediate, advanced, master. Having a basic grasp of geomancy would mean the person was at the novice stage. Being able to apply his knowledge in a practical setting would mean he's of the intermediate stage. To be able to seek out Dragon Veins within the mountains would mean a person was in the advanced stage. At last, for a person to be a master in this subject, he would have to have a complete understanding of the subject and also know its limitations.
In other words, only when a geomancer truly understands the limitations of such a subject would they be considered a master in this field.
"If a person stayed away from the Imperial Court or was a low ranking official, geomancy might have some use. But once a person was involved within the Imperial Court and was of the seventh rank or higher, how can geomancy be of any use with the Imperial Qi bearing down so heavily?
The memory of the Daoist as he severed the head of the dragon came into mind and Pei ZI Yun smiled. Even after he had killed the latent dragon, the dynasty lasted for several more years. Despite the fact that the previous dynasty had been on a decline, Imperial Qi still abounded within the air, as it seeped out. Most of the lower class wouldn't have access to the Imperial Qi, and yet there was still a small chance the smaller dragons would come upon them, and they could gain access to titles of nobility or innate skills.
Not wanting to speak further, he bade his farewell to the Grand Princess, who reminded him, "The information which you requested for regarding Daoists of the previous dynasty have been acquired. There is a total of 3,000 documents, two oxcarts full."
"Many thanks, Grand Princess." Pei Zi Yun bowed deeply.
The Grand Princess picked up the jade green teacup and took a sip before she laughed, "You've done a great work of merit for the Crown Prince. This is a small matter. Not enough to be so courteous."
Just as Pei Zi Yun was about to speak, the sound of the qin rang out and he paused.
The sound of the qin was clear, crisp, and soaked in emotions. The most noticeable aspect about the melody was the amount of feelings invested into it. It was continuous and orderly, like a stream of water as it flowed. Pei Zi Yun listened closely and quietly as he picked up the opened the lid of the teacup, and hot steam rose to his face.
After some time, the sound of the qin reached its finale. Pei Zi Yun sighed, "The Canton Princess is truly gifted with the instrument. She sounds like she's at the pinnacle of learning."
Hearing Pei Zi Yun's words, the Grand Princess replied, "This strength of hers comes from her father. Lofty but filled with emotions."
The both of them looked down, and saw the lake in the middle. The young canton Princess held onto her instrument by the side as she smiled joyfully.
Pei Zi Yun forced a bitter laugh as he bowed and then left. He thought to himself, "The Canton Princess has improved so quickly, it's rather amazing. Could she be one of the Three Ye's and Two Guo's?"
"It's only that, such fortunes, can be used on the qin?"
Pei Zi Yun walked out and saw a pair of oxcarts that waited for him outside. An official was waited alongside the cart. When he saw that Pei Zi Yun walked over, he stepped forward and bowed, "Greetings Dao Master."
As soon as he bowed, he retrieved an imperial tile from his robes, "Dao Master, the Crown Prince has sent me here to wait on you."
Pei Zi Yun knew that this man was supposed to assist him in anything he wished. He laughed, "I do have something for you to do. Can you help me collect all the belongings of many Daoists from the olden days? I wish to place these items at home for decorative purposes."
Pei Zi Yun instructed him before he took out a thick stack of notes. When the official saw this, he snapped out of his daze and bowed, "Yes, I shall instruct some of my men to assist in this matter."
As for why Pei Zi Yun didn't ask the Crown Prince and the Grand Princess to assist him in this search, the official understood that this was a small matter, and didn't need to trouble the highly esteemed royalty.
After all, it was just about collecting mementos. There weren't many of such items going around and they were probably worth quite a fair bit as well.
Pei Zi Yun smiled to himself as he stepped into the cart and headed for the pier. The pair of oxcarts trailed behind him. When he finally arrived at the pier, he noticed that the oxcarts were filled with documents.
"Be careful with these. Organize these items according to the type. Whoever ruins it, might find it hard to compensate." Someone shouted out.
Each book had less than 3,000 words but were manually written and were valued at 10 coins. If the books were to be printed instead, it would cost only 1 coin.
Although printing the books would be much cheaper, Pei Zi Yun could resell some of these books back in the city. He could also donate some of these written works, or even place them within his own home. He hoped that in a hundred years' time, his Pei Mansion would be filled with great works.
"Young Master Pei, the books have all been loaded."
"Alright, let's set sail!"
The boat set off as Pei Zi Yun waved his hand as he bid farewell to the capital city. His heart was already fixed on travelling to the mountainous areas, where the Dragon Veins lurked.
"After coming under attack by the backlash, my memories have been washed clean, and yet that isn't important. I've managed to acquire the Daoist's memories."
"It seemed like these Immortal Dragon Veins could be found within Ying Prefecture!"
"I have to go and see them for myself."