Fangzheng grabbed his tail and dragged him back eliciting a yelp from the wolf. He scolded him jovially, “You’re such a lazy dude. You run the moment there’s work to do. Now that the door is blocked, where do you plan on running? Be obedient and work. If not, I won’t give you any food.”
Lone Wolf whimpered, expressing his dissatisfaction. However, with the threat of not having his meals provided, he had no choice but to obediently allow Fangzheng to tie a wooden plank to him. He was being used as a wolf-shaped snow pusher.
Lone Wolf ate Crystal Rice and drank Unrooted Clean Aqua daily. His constitution was improving by the day and in terms of strength he was many times stronger than when he first arrived.
Fangzheng held a metal shovel. After practicing the Great Strength Vajra Palm, he was able to use it with ease. With the human and wolf working tirelessly, a path soon parted. However, the path was rather insufficient at five hundred meters.
After throwing away the steel shovel aside, Fangzheng patted Lone Wolf’s head breathlessly. He left the rest for tomorrow.
Fangzheng returned to the building, started a fire, took out his cell phone and began reading the Buddhist scriptures seriously.
After the incident at Baiyun Monastery, Fangzheng decided to learn from his mistake. Even if he still wanted to renounce asceticism, he had to study the Buddhist scriptures and understand the Buddhist Dharma if he did not want to humiliate himself while outside or at other monasteries. There were too many variabilities when relying on the System. In a way, he had learned a lesson.
Fangzheng scratched his head. “System, it’s too slow reading page by page. Are there any abilities that can augment me?”
“Be content. Your memory and perceptive abilities are far greater than ordinary people through the help of the Crystal Rice and Unrooted Clean Aqua. Buddhist scriptures cannot just be given to you. It requires you to read and understand it for yourself. There are no shortcuts. Work hard.”
Fangzheng pouted. “If martial arts can be taught to me without effort, why not the same for Buddhist scriptures?”
“Buddhist scriptures are not something easily instructed. Ignoring the fact that they need to be bought, what use do you have of them if you are given the scriptures but someone else has to read it to you?”
Fangzheng could not come up with a response. Since he could not rely on the System, he could only calm his mind and read the Buddhist scriptures himself. Thankfully, Fangzheng had survived reading the half copy of the Diamond Sutra from a young age. He naturally did not find it boring reading new scriptures.
Meanwhile, in a high-end district in Black Mountain City.
“Is this the place?” Zhu Lin stood by the door, taking in the scene in front of her. She felt that the place was extremely familiar! Although she had never been here, she was absolutely certain that she had seen it before.
“Yes, this is the place. This is a high-end district of our city. Our production crew has not found a suitable work location for the time being. We are still holding the auditions around in this district. Let’s go. It’s the building up ahead.” A man pointed to a European-styled building.
Zhu Lin nodded as she followed. She felt the place become increasingly familiar. When she stood in front of the building, she recalled something!
Wasn’t this the scene she had seen in that dream!? Back then, she was seeing it from a third person point of view, but this time, it was from a first person point of view! She turned her head to look at the two men that had brought her here. They looked the same as in her dream!
“Miss Zhu, what is it?” asked the man.
Zhu Lin took a deep breath and continued acting calm. “It’s nothing. I just haven’t been to such a nice district before. The houses here are truly extravagant.”
As she spoke, Zhu Lin secretly pressed a button on her cell phone. She had already set up a speed dial.
“You are my…” A familiar tune sounded. Zhu Lin said embarrassed, “Sorry about that. I need to take this call.”
The two men did not think much of it and stood there. Zhu Lin walked to the side and suddenly raised her voice. “What? He got into an accident?! Okay! Wait, I’ll be right there. Wait for me!”
“Sorry about that. My boyfriend got into a car accident. I have to go see him.” She broke into a run.
The man shouted, with wide eyes as he saw her leave, “Miss Zhu, this is a major production. It would be a wasted opportunity if you miss it!”
“No major production is more important than a person’s life. Please reserve the role for me. I’ll return once I’m done.” Zhu Lin ran off and vanished.
The men scowled, one of them spoke up, “This chick was good looking, it’s a shame we lost her.”
“She won’t run far. Wouldn’t she return?” The other man smiled and took out a cell phone, “Next target.”
After Zhu Lin left the district, she immediately got a taxi and made a police report.
Not long later, some news became the talk of the town among Black Mountain City residents.
“To swindle money and sex, they turned to force when words failed.”
“These scum should all die. Rumors say that many young women have fallen victim. They did not report it to the police because they did not want their naked pictures exposed and put on the internet. Well, it’s all good now. They have been caught.”
When Zhu Lin saw the news, she felt a speck of lingering fear. She sat at home, watching the ceiling in a daze. Vaguely, she saw the bald monk. “If not for Master, I might have already fallen victim. I have to visit him when I have the time. I have to thank him in person. How did he know that this would happen? Clairvoyance? Is he a God or a Buddha?”
Time passed. As spring lightning resounded, the snow that capped the mountains began melting. The willow trees began sprouting tender shoots as they came alive. The entire world started a new cycle and revived.
Fangzheng sat by a willow tree and plucked a tender branch. He gently rubbed the bark and separated the bark from the branch’s stem. Then, he gently pulled, extracting the stem, leaving the branch intact in its cylindrical shape. Then, on one end of the bark, he removed the hard bark on its exterior, leaving behind a tender green inner layer. He placed it in his mouth and gently blew.
“Hehe, I haven’t lost my touch.” Blowing such a willow whistle was one of the toys Fangzheng would make every spring. It wasn’t that fun and he couldn’t produce a decent variety of sounds but even so, he enjoyed the feeling. As Fangzheng blew the flute, Squirrel’s ears perked up. He jumped onto Fangzheng’s shoulder and cocked his head, looking curiously at the gizmo in Fangzheng’s mouth.
Fangzheng chuckled and continued blowing.
Squirrel took a step back then quickly stepped forward once more out of curiosity.
Squirrel did not retreat this time. He sprawled on Fangzheng’s face and hung himself from the whistle. His wide eyes glimmered out of curiosity.
Fangzheng stuffed the whistle into Squirrel’s mouth and smiled, “Blow some air.”
Squirrel looked warily at Fangzheng, turned around, then ran off. After climbing up to the tree, he blew with all his might.
Fangzheng was stunned that Squirrel managed to produce a sound. He never expected Squirrel to succeed. Squirrel was surprised as well. He jumped down excitedly, dancing and leaping. He went to seek out Lone Wolf while blowing the whistle.
From that day forth, the monastery had a whistling squirrel that rode on Lone Wolf.
Fangzheng found it interesting the first two days but with time, he realized it affected his reading of Buddhist scriptures. He chased both the wolf and squirrel out.
When he looked down, Fangzheng realized that his WeChat had a red notification.
Fangzheng opened it and realized that Zhao Datong had sent him a message. “Master, something bad has happened. I need your help!”