Translator: CKtalon Editor: CKtalon
It was already too late for Jiang Zhou to stop Guan Xiangfeng with a shout.
“Master, don’t worry. I’ll stop him.” Qiu Xiaoye widened her stride as she rushed to the door and when she looked up, she saw Red Boy holding a huge machete. He was almost about to cleave down at a resplendent chair that looked like jadeite. She subconsciously also shouted.
“This! What are you doing? Fan Qing, get them to stop shouting in a monastery,” said Fan Qing.
Fan Qing nodded and immediately ran over.
Jiang Zhou felt assured with regards to Fan Qing. He was more mature in contrast, but…
“Stop!” Fan Qing’s roar left Jiang Zhou completely dumbfounded. What was happening in the backyard? Why were his three disciples acting this way? However, his leg was still injured, preventing him from going forward to take a look. All he could do was try his best to stretch his neck to look in. Unfortunately, he saw nothing because of the angle wasn’t right.
Jiang Zhou turned anxious as a result. “Fan Qing, what did all of you see? Bring me in.”
Only then did Fan Qing recall his purpose for coming after his fellow disciples. He was supposed to stop them from shouting, so why did he end up shouting as well? Fan Qing blushed as he hurriedly ran back with Guan Xiangfeng. As for Qiu Xiaoye, she stared at Red Boy like he had killed her father. It was as though she would eat him up if he dared cleave down upon the chair! This was enough to stop Red Boy from cleaving down…
As Guan Xiangfeng lifted up Jiang Zhou, he said, “Master, you might be unaware. There is an extremely exquisite chair in the yard. A brat is about to chop it up! That’s too much! I could not resist it and ended up shouting…”
Jiang Zhou looked at Fan Qing who smiled bitterly. “Me too…”
As they spoke, the trio arrived at the door. Jiang Zhou instantly saw a white-robed Fangzheng sitting under the bodhi tree. Just as he was about to say something, his gaze landed on the chair which lay on the ground. He also saw Red Boy with his machete raised high as though he was about to cleave down at the chair. The scene of the machete coupled with the chair was just too jarring! He could not help but notice it as well.
Just one glance was enough to make Jiang Zhou freeze. The chair might appear like beautiful jadeite with refreshing, natural patterns in the eyes of others, but in his eyes, it was a work of art made by a godly craftsman! Every part of the bamboo was carved, socketed, or sliced according to the bamboo’s natural conditions. Although this sounded simple in theory, the number of people who were capable of doing that in the entire world amounted to only a handful! And how could these people spend time and waste material to make a mere chair? Therefore, it was no exaggeration to say that this chair was an extremely extravagant chair indeed. Materials could be dealt with even if they were expensive, but skill was hard to come by. If the material was priceless, the work from both factors combined would truly be priceless.
And this chair had one of its legs broken! Furthermore, it was about to be chopped up!
At that instant, Jiang Zhou finally understood why his students had lost their minds and shouted. If he had been in their shoes, he too would have shouted!
“Patron, is there a reason why you came here?” Fangzheng was puzzled. Why did people come to mess with him whenever he did something trivial? Back when he chopped the bamboo, someone shouted. Now that they were chopping a broken chair, there were still people shouting… What were they up to? Were they trying to make a riot?
“Venerable Fangzheng, sorry for our gaffe. It’s just that… What is Venerable Jingxin doing?” Jiang Zhou looked around and saw many chairs, benches, and a table in the yard. These items all looked about the same, but the techniques used on them were actually different. Their styles were also different. He could tell that each stroke of the knife had been very precise during the crafting of these items. This was not ordinary furniture that had been crudely made.
Even Jiang Zhou who was used to seeing grand scenes could not help but think of one word—extravagance!
“Oh, this chair was broken by This Penniless Monk’s disciple when he sat on it. It’s useless to keep it, so This Penniless Monk plans on chopping it up for firewood,” said Fangzheng matter-of-factly. He naturally knew that Frost Bamboo was good stuff, but to him, apart from being able to eat the young shoots and making furniture with the old ones, bamboo was of no other use. What else could he do except for burning it? The System prevented him from doing business by selling them.
“Chop it up for firewood!?” Jiang Zhou, Qiu Xiaoye, Fan Qing, and Guan Xiangfeng exclaimed the moment they heard that. Their eyes widened, and the look in their eyes was as though Fangzheng had just killed their parents.
“It’s already broken. What use can it have besides being firewood?” Red Boy was puzzled as well. The bamboo was perhaps not bad, but from where he came from, it would be considered only somewhat better bamboo. What was so rare about it? As for the workmanship of the chair, his master had created a pile of furniture in one afternoon. So what if one of the oieces was disposed of?
Lone Wolf, Squirrel, and Monkey all shared the same thoughts. From their point of view, those things were worthless!
As they took in a deep breath, Jiang Zhou and his disciples tried their best to hold back their anger. After all, these were the monastery’s possessions. How Fangzheng and company handled them was their own business. They did not have the right to comment.
Jiang Zhou said, “Venerable Fangzheng, this chair’s material and workmanship are both excellent. This is good stuff that can hardly be bought outside. It’s a pity if you chop it up for firewood…”
Fangzheng asked in surprise, “It’s worth something?”
“Of course! Although the chair’s workmanship only involved a few cuts, each cut is incisive, with it following the grain of the bamboo. Besides, there are no external objects such as nails in the entirety of the chair. Placed there, people in the know would know that it was man-made, but those unaware might think it was naturally formed. Such an excellent item isn’t just worth something, it’s worth a lot! It will easily sell for a hundred or two hundred thousand! If it’s an antique which was made by a famous craftsman, it could be worth even more,” said Jiang Zhou.
“Is that so…” Fangzheng nodded as he asked the System. “System, look at how much my workmanship is worth. Can’t I sell it?”
“How can Buddhist craft be sold for money? Can you have some greater ambitions, please?” asked the System.
Fangzheng smiled wryly. “Let’s not use the money we earn. Let’s donate it to charity. Isn’t that okay?”
“Nice idea, but no! The skills given to you by the System exceed that of the best masters of this world. That alone is already quite excessive. Yet you wish to sell what you produce too? That would not be an act of good, but the cause of the destruction of an entire industry. You would be destroying the lifework of people who have kept to this art their entire lives. How many people can you help with the money you would gain from selling? How many people would suffer because of the destruction of an industry? Do you still think it’s good?”
Fangzheng was left speechless.
The System continued. “This chair would take at least a month or two for a top-grade craftsman to make, including choosing the materials, analyzing them, and beginning the crafting process. How many can you make a day?”
Fangzheng fell silent as he smiled bitterly. “Indeed. I didn’t think through the matter.”
Guan Xiangfeng’s eyes lit up when he saw Fangzheng turn silent. He thought, “As expected of Master. With just one sentence, this monk seems interested in the money! F**k, if I had known that, I would have offered money to buy the Frost Bamboo. Wouldn’t I have gotten everything I need then? I wouldn’t have had to beat around the bush. D*mn, I lost out!”