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Chapter 66: Square Head
“Today, my left eye has been jumping constantly. Is something good occurring?” Wang Tong walked into the main hall and sat down on the chair next to Pei Huai. He started to neaten his clothing. As he neatened the hem of his robes, he pretended to pat away the dust, and wanted everyone to see what he was wearing.
Qing Yuan sneered. Wasn’t he just showing off what his apprentice had bought him?
“How about you go to the door cracks and search. Maybe you will be able to squeeze some jade coins out.” Qing Yuan rolled his eyes.
Wang Tong ignored his jealous expression and continued to adjust his clothing. Qing Yuan’s eyes became wider in anger.
Heng Yan walked out of the inner room and saw several peak masters sitting together. He coughed dryly. “Today, I summoned all of you to tell you good news.”
“All the evil cultivators have been caught?” Qing Yuan asked expressionlessly.
“You are going to increase our monthly stipend?” Wang Tong’s gaze was full of anticipation.
“None of those.” Heng Yan pointed at the message seal. “Yesterday, Kong Hou send a message saying Five Flavors Manor is willing to join our sect.”
“Really?” The five peak masters became excited. Qing Yuan, who was the one that liked food the most, even stood up from his chair. “Kong Hou Shizhi really managed to persuade Bai An?”
“Of course.” Heng Yan nodded and smiled. “It was a coincidence. Kong Hou coincidentally went to Five Flavors Manor for other matters and mentioned this to Bai An. Bai An said if Splendid Cloud Sect is willing to accept them he will agree.”
“Kong Hou Shizhi is so skilled to have accomplished something we have hoped for so long.” Qing Yuan rubbed his hands in happiness. “Sect Master, this matter is important. Let me be in charge of it. I will go prepare gifts for Five Flavors Manor.”
“No hurry. I have already had Wu Chuan go prepare the gifts.” Heng Yan saw Qing Yuan appear as though he wanted to immediately go visit Five Flavors Manor with gifts. He raised a hand to suppress this. “Kong Hou accomplished this matter. I decided to give her a reward. What do you think?”
“Of course, not just reward, but great rewards.” Qing Yuan took out a pile of best quality pills from his storage ring. “I will add this.”
When it came to public rewards of the sect, Heng Yan never made a decision on his own. Kong Hou was a disciple of Moon Perching Peak. While the other peak masters liked her as well, in matters relating to cultivation resources, if he did not take care, it may cause conflict.
Many conflicts originated from the lack of communication. Heng Yan did not want the sect to be in discord due to minor matters.
“Little Shizhi made such a great contribution. We want to reward her, and I fear even the other disciples will want to give gifts to her.” Pei Huai took out some glowing talismans. “I will add these to the pile. I have not forged good talismans recently. When I make a talisman of the highest quality, I will give that to her.”
The four peak masters all added to the pile. As a result, the things they sent out were more valuable than the reward that Heng Yan had planned.
“It seemed that you are all very welcoming to Five Flavors Manor.” Heng Yan looked at the talismans, seals and pills covering the table. “Qing Yuan, work hard for a few days and go visit Five Flavors Manor with Wu Chuan to plan the joining process. Since they are willing to become our subordinate sect, we will not slight them.”
Acceptance gifts delivered by a peak master of the main sect and the eldest sect disciple was enough to express the sincerity of Splendid Cloud Sect.
Two days later, when the disciples of Five Flavors Manor were still fighting over whether osmanthus cakes should be salty or sweet, someone suddenly knocked on their gates.
Chu Ji Xuan, who had not joined for three days yet and was trembling under the pots and bowls, pulled open the door. He saw a dozen cultivators standing outside. The leader had snowy white hair and healthy skin without any hint of age. The cultivator half a step behind the leader looked to be in his twenties. He wore white robes and had a silver sword. His hair was neatly pinned up with a jade coronet, and his handsome face seemed slightly stern.
“Greetings, Young Friend. I am the peak master of Splendid Cloud Sect’s Daybreak Cloud Peak, Qing Yuan. I have come to visit with acceptance gifts.”
Celestial Kong Hou’s sect?
Chu Ji Xuan bowed towards them and said, “Transcendent, please wait for a moment. This junior will report to the manor master immediately.”
“I do not dare accept.” Chu Ji Xuan turned and ran inside, almost colliding with the eldest sect disciple, Dan Hong. Dan Hong saw him walking hurriedly and thought he was frightened by the other members of the sect. He comforted, “Do not be afraid, everyone only has their opinions about their food. They are very gentle at other times.”
“Eldest Shijie, I am not afraid. However, a transcendent who says he is a peak master of Splendid Cloud Sect has come to the door with acceptance gifts. I need to report to Master.”
“Wait, which sect did you say?”
“Splendid, Splendid Cloud Sect.” Chu Ji Xuan saw Eldest Shijie’s expression had changed dramatically. Thinking of her valiant figure when she held a pot and beat Second Shixiong, he took a small step back.
“What did Splendid Cloud Sect come with?”
“With… acceptance gifts?” Chu Ji Xuan felt something was not right. When people usually visited, they would not take care to say that they came with gifts. What was this acceptance gift? Were they taking one of the women of the sect as a concubine?
When he thought of this, Chu Ji Xuan frowned. While he had only stayed at Five Flavors Manor for a few days, he could see his fellow disciples were obsessed with cooking, and were honest people. That peak master of Daybreak Cloud Peak was very old, and still wanted a concubine?
Were all cultivators so shameless?
“Shijie, I will go tell them right now that Master is not here.” Chu Ji Xuan rolled up his sleeves and prepared to leave the shameless old man outside.
“What not here—why are you not going in to report to Master!” Dan Hong hit the back of his head. She propped her hands on her waist and said to the shidi and shimei who were still fighting. “Put away the pots and bowls. Something good has happened.”
“Eldest Shijie, do not fool us. Last time, you also said this to us. Today, unless a large sect is accepting us as a subordinate sect, I will not give up.” A shimei dressed in blue robes holding a large ladle pointed at the shidi facing her and said, “These brats said us savory chefs are not as refined as the pastry chefs, I want to beat him up.”
“Then wait—Splendid Cloud Sect has come with acceptance gifts. After we formally join Splendid Cloud Sect, you can kill him and have him die a more glorious death.” Dan Hong glanced at the shidi who dared to make trouble with the issue of savory and pastry chefs. “Go and report the name of Splendid Cloud Sect. Maybe you will be reincarnated in a better life.”
The young shidi trembled and did not dare to speak.
Speaking of the conflict between savory and pastry chefs was a taboo among cooking cultivators. He had just said it impulsively and now regretted it. So no matter if he was scolded or beaten, he did not dare to make a sound.
“Master!” A disciple smashed open Bai An’s door. “Splendid Cloud Sect has come with acceptance gifts to accept us as a subordinate sect!”
Spirit Master Bai An spat out the pickled chicken claw he had been eating. “Huh?”
“Splendid Cloud Sect, the Splendid Cloud Sect of the top ten sects, is going to accept us as a subordinate sect. Right now, they are at the gates.”
Spirit Master Bai An was stunned. So Celestial Kong Hou had spoken the truth? So where had the misunderstanding between him and Sect Master Heng Yan occurred in the past?
“I do not know how the discussion between the sect and Spirit Master Bai An has proceeded.” Kong Hou lazily leaned against the carriage cushions, a book in her hand. But her attention was on Five Flavors Manor.
“Do not worry. As long as your honored sect truly plans to take Five Flavors Manor as a subordinate sect, Five Flavors Manor will definitely be unable to refuse.” Huan Zhong saw Kong Hou had not put this matter down and said, “Five Flavors Manor is weak and does not have any mountains or cities that belong to them. Even the place they live in is thin in spirit energy. Joining Splendid Cloud Sect is their best choice.”
Because other than Splendid Cloud Sect, no other sect in the ten major sects would accept them. Even though the sect eldest disciple of Clear Dawn Sect made a mention, that was a thought of the moment. To Clear Dawn Sect, Five Flavors Manor was not important.
Among the ten major sects, Splendid Cloud Sect’s selection of their subordinate sects was the strangest. Even now, people could not understand it. Before encountering Kong Hou, Huan Zhong thought that Splendid Cloud Sect was the weirdest sect in the cultivation world. After meeting Kong Hou, Huan Zhong felt that Splendid Cloud Sect had an interesting soul under their unrestrained appearance. However, this soul was difficult to discover.
“Master, we are going to reach Kui City soon.”
As Lin Hu spoke, the flying horses whined and dove, pulling the carriage to land outside the gates of Kui City.
Kui City’s doors were impressive, the new gates tall and sturdy. Countless inactive defensive and offensive formations gave off bright light. Kong Hou put down the curtain and said quietly to Huan Zhong, “Kui City must be very rich.”
“How so?” Huan Zhong lifted the curtain and looked out. He only saw the tops of the city walls were embedded with bright precious stones. There was also a sign hanging outside the gates saying “dirty carriages will not be allowed into the city.” The guards at the gates all wore golden armor.
This city seemed eager to show off its wealth to all outsiders.
“The gates of Kui City were renovated after the present sect master of Primary Luck Sect took that position. Primary Luck Sect has developed nicely in these recent years. A while ago, an elder of the sect reached Projection Stage.” Lin Hu explained the situation of Kui City. “Kui City is famed for its precious stones. When we come out of the secret realm, Miss Kong Hou can take a good look inside the city.”
Seeing Kong Hou not react to his words, Lin Hu also added, “Recently, the cultivation world has this saying that if Primary Luck Sect had not been established late, they might have joined the ten major sects already.”
“Then this sect is very strong,” Kong Hou said emotionally. “Will they stop us from entering the secret realm?”
Lin Hu was silent. “No…”
He had almost told her explicitly that Primary Luck Sect was interested in a position among the top ten sects. Why did Miss Kong Hou not react? All of Splendid Cloud Sect was like this. Could one of them pay some more attention?
“Regardless of where the secret realm appears, if a secret realm will accept a cultivator, then other sects cannot stop them.” Huan Zhong glanced at Lin Hu. “Lin Hu, enter the city.”
Receiving Master’s displeased gaze, Lin Hu did not dare to say more and drove the carriage towards the city gates.
After entering Kui City, Kong Hou saw many of the passersby were dressed in bright robes. Women with their hair dripping in jewels walked together with men whose hands were covered in rings like moving jewelry racks.
“Path Friend Chang De made an appointment to meet at Eternal Prosperity Inn. Should we go there now?” Kong Hou moved away her curious gaze and switched topics.
Huan Zhong nodded slightly and seemed a little reluctant.
Kong Hou saw a middle-aged man dressed in purple robes coming towards them. Kong Hou took a few more glances. She wanted to tell Huan Zhong but felt it was inappropriate. It was not elegant conduct to talk about other people’s appearances.
However… this person’s face was so square. She had never seen a head so much like a brick.
Translator Ramblings: Cooking is a great and profound art.
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