Guan Ping’s eyes flashed in disappointment.
“Sis Guan, Boss got me to bring you over. We have already reserved the best banquet in the best hotel in Black Mountain City,” said the man politely as he opened the door for her.
Guan Ping wished to reject him but upon seeing the luxurious car and the helicopter, she finally gritted her teeth and nodded in agreement.
This was the first time Guan Ping was agreeing to Boss Zhang’s invitation. It was also the first time she understood what it meant to give in to sensual pleasure and how much awe one could create from a single action. She saw a few familiar faces and when she alighted the helicopter, everyone looked at her enviously. She realized that although she had been telling herself to lead a clean, chaste life, she really enjoyed such a feeling! The feeling of being a queen was simply… intoxicating.
After a busy morning, Fangzheng finally finished irrigating the Crystal Rice paddy. The Crystal Rice had already grown to the height of a finger. The sprouts were thick and strong, unafraid of the elements. Fangzheng was delighted when he noticed. If and when he harvested it, he could truly eat until he could no longer move every day. He did not need to worry about starving anymore.
Upon coming to this thought, he hummed a tune and returned to One Finger Monastery.
Days passed but what left Fangzheng depressed was that there were clear skies for four consecutive days! The sun was becoming hotter as the temperatures rose.
That noon, just after Fangzheng finished his lunch while he was sitting in the temple hall preparing to recite the scriptures. He saw a familiar figure walk into the temple hall. “Venerable Fangzheng, I’m back.”
Fangzheng looked at the woman in front of him and immediately recognized her. She was none other than Guan Ping who had visited a few days ago. Guan Ping’s clothing had changed. Her clothes could have been described as appropriate the last time, but this time it could be described as gorgeous! Even if Fangzheng had no knowledge of tailoring, he could tell that each stitch and fold in her clothes was meticulous. It was similar to Li Xueying’s clothes. They were obviously expensive.
Upon seeing Fangzheng’s odd gaze, Guan Ping’s eyes flashed a look of misery as she whispered, “Venerable Fangzheng, can we talk outside?”
Fangzheng nodded and left the temple hall with Guan Ping. They sat down under the bodhi tree. The young monk seemed to change miraculously in front of the woman.
“Female Patron, are you now able to finish the story you were telling This Penniless Monk the other day?” asked Fangzheng.
Guan Ping nodded. “Yes. Venerable Fangzheng, I’m becoming more and more confused.”
“Why are you confused?”
“Venerable Fangzheng, what do people live for?”
Fangzheng countered, “What do you wish to live for?”
Guan Ping shook her head. “I do not know. My parents told me ever since I was young that people should strive to be vindicated. Therefore, I studied endlessly and gave it my best effort. I got all sorts of scholarships and finally, I became an actress.” Noticing Fangzheng’s lack of reaction, Guan Ping could not help but add, “The kind with a little fame.”
Fangzheng’s expression remained unchanged as though her achievements were nothing worth mentioning. At least, it did not cause his heart to stir.
Guan Ping frowned slightly as she continued, “A while ago, I was the second female lead in the very popular Zhen Guan’s Chronicles.”
Yet, the monk in front of her remained collected as though a second female lead was worthless. It never occurred to her that Fangzheng had even met an international superstar. How could he be impressed by the accomplishments of a B or C-list actress?
Guan Ping felt a little displeased but continued. “Later on, someone entered my life. He’s old but he’s nice. He has been courting me ceaselessly. A few days ago, he knew I came here and sent someone to pick me up. He even used a helicopter to ferry me off to lunch.”
Upon saying this, Guan Ping subconsciously glanced at Fangzheng. Yet, the monk in front of her remained calm, reactionless. Guan Ping really wanted to ask him, “Do you know what a helicopter is?” In the end she decided to hold her tongue.
Guan Ping continued. “I went and it was the most luxurious banquet I had ever seen. I was in the brightest limelight.” The helicopter descended with flowers paving the road. There were crystal cups and 1982 vintage red wine. Everything was just so mesmerizing…”
The more she spoke the brighter Guan Ping’s smile became.
Having seen all this, Fangzheng more or less understood Guan Ping’s reason for coming here.
At that moment, Guan Ping laughed as she cried… her hands covering her face. The more she cried, the sadder she became until she began wailing!
Fangzheng sighed when he saw this. He remained silent as he watched.
Guan Ping was done crying after five minutes. She sat up and looked at Fangzheng. “Abbot Fangzheng, am I sick? I was brought up on the ideal that those that revel in debauchery are trash! I also know that he is courting me only because I’m a novelty. He has courted many female celebrities in the past and he divorced them shortly after marrying them. I’m no exception. Such a person is someone I used to despise the most. I disdain such people. He’s only a wealthy nouveau riche! But… but I really enjoy that feeling. But every time I want to accept him, I have a voice inside me. It screams at me, calling me a sinner! I feel like i’m a criminal, as though I’m selling my soul to the devil… I’m afraid… but I also thirst for it. ”
Fangzheng sighed. Everything was as he had expected. She was a pitiful and sad woman. She was being enticed by money while hoping to uphold her purity and morals. She thirsted for money but was afraid of being immoral… But from what she wore, her body had clearly made the decision despite the dilemma she felt she was going through.
Fangzheng pressed his palms together. “Amitabha. Patron, why did you come to This Penniless Monk if you have already made your decision?” Fangzheng felt a little disparagement towards her. He had seen many women. Fang Yunjing, Ma Juan, Jing Yan, Li Xueying, etc. They ranged from being beautiful to notl but all of them lived honestly. They had their own goals and their own souls. As for Li Fengxian from the past, although she had sold her body for money, she had done so to live on. Deep in her heart, she wished to jump out of that life and carve a path for herself.
But Guan Ping had completely lost herself. She no longer had anything in her eyes except greed and her fancy wishes! Then for what reason did she seek Fangzheng? Was it truly to have her conundrum resolved?
Guan Ping was taken aback as she looked at her clothes. She then looked at Fangzheng’s bright eyes as a look of shame flashed across hers. She muttered, “I… I haven’t made the final decision. Venerable One, I need help, help extricate me from my dilemma. It doesn’t matter which side I eventually choose. As long as I feel I made the choice myself, without being tempted.”
Fangzheng smiled as he looked at Guan Ping. “If that is the case, This Penniless Monk can indeed help you.” With that said, Fangzheng’s expression turned solemn. “Patron, look at This Penniless Monk’s hands!”
As he spoke, Fangzheng secretly cast the divine power, A Golden Millet Dream.
Guan Ping looked at Fangzheng’s hands as he instructed. She saw a golden lotus flower in his hand. It slowly bloomed and a golden pill appeared inside it. It glowed with rainbow light, making it look extremely beautiful! Without even approaching it, she could smell the herbal fragrance from it. Even a fool would know that it was absolutely extraordinary!