Translator: CKtalon Editor: CKtalon
The duo settled their lunch with something simple before visiting various places, such as the commercial and residential districts. When Liu Beijun saw the greenified, well-facilitated districts, he felt extremely envious. He could not help but say, “If only I could live here.”
Fangzheng still did not say a word.
In the afternoon, Fangzheng brought Liu Beijun to Tsinghua University, where they saw students sitting under the shade of trees, reading. Coupled with the chirping of the birds, it made the entire area emanate a serene feeling, almost as if they were in a book. Liu Beijun’s gaze changed when he saw the city-garden university. And, the more he saw it, the more he liked it. He could not help but say, “This is what school should be like! It’s awesome! Our school is nothing but trash compared to this place!”
Fangzheng remained silent.
The two stayed in the capital for two days and when they left on the third day, Liu Beijun looked covetously at the city behind him. “Abbot, this is what you can call a city, but why is there such a huge difference? Also Abbot, you haven’t spoken to me in two days. What exactly are you up to?”
Only then did Fangzheng put down the scripture book in his hand, and he said lightly, “See things for yourself and think them over. We can talk about it when we get back.”
Liu Beijun scratched his head. He was unsure what Fangzheng meant.
After they alighted the train, they saw the familiar Black Mountain City. In the past, Liu Beijun felt that Black Mountain City was rather prosperous and big. However after experiencing the beauty of the capital, he suddenly thought that Black Mountain City was just this and nothing more. After entering Songwu County, his brows knitted together. When he reached One Finger Village, his brows were locked tightly in a complete frown. He realized that he could not say a word.
Just as he was about to scale Mt. One Finger, Liu Beijun suddenly stopped.
“Why aren’t you walking?” Fangzheng finally spoke.
“Abbot Fangzheng, I do not wish to go up,” said Liu Beijun.
“And the reason?”
“I do not want to be trapped in this farming village that faces the yellow soil and blue skies my entire life. I want to go to the city!” Liu Beijun clenched his teeth, before saying something that surprised even himself.
Fangzheng was unperturbed as he asked lightly, “How?”
Liu Beijun was taken aback. He lowered his head and said, “I’m not sure. I can go there to work.”
“Work? What can you do? You saw for yourself what those companies did when This Penniless Monk brought you there. Do you think there’s any job you can do?”
Liu Beijun was completely dumbfounded. The companies they had gone to were either related to computers or other things he had no clue about. The only jobs he could understand were in construction. But if he worked in construction in the city, what would be the difference between doing that and staying in the village to do the same? Besides, he yearned for the life of a white-collared worker—an office job, not a construction job!
Liu Beijun stared at Fangzheng and asked, “Fangzheng, I know that you have a solution, right?”
Fangzheng turned around and said, “Think it over yourself. Once you figure it out, you can head down the mountain.”
In the end, Liu Beijun followed Fangzheng back to the mountaintop. But from that day, he fell into deep thought and frustration. After seeing the bustle of a major city, he could no longer stand the tranquility of the mountaintop. One day, a couple came up to the mountain and prayed in the temple hall. Liu Beijun happened to pass by and heard the man mumble. “Buddha, please bless my son and let him be accepted into a good university. I hope he doesn’t need to farm and can become a decent city-dweller.”
Liu Beijun’s body quivered. University?
He was a poor farming village boy. He was without ability, yet he wished to go to a big city. What other method would be easier and more acceptable than getting into a university?
All these days, he had been thinking of various solutions, such as working in the city at the construction sites or factories. But ultimately, he had given up after checking the Internet using Fangzheng’s cell phone. The assembly line life which was akin to a robot’s life was not something he wanted. After tasting a delicacy, how could he bring himself to eat chaff? However, because he had blocked out the idea of schooling deep down, it had prevented him from coming to this realization.
Now that he was reminded of it suddenly, the enlightened Liu Beijun rushed to the backyard and said to Fangzheng, “Abbot Fangzheng, I wish to attend school!”
Fangzheng nodded. “Go down then.”
Liu Beijun nodded and turned to run out. Indeed, the huge white wolf at the door was gone. The instant he walked out of One Finger Monastery, he laughed! Then he turned to bow thrice towards the monastery, shouting, “Abbot Fangzheng, if I succeed one day, I will definitely return to thank you!”
With that said, Liu Beijun ran off.
Meanwhile, Liu Hongyun was drinking sadly at home.
“Stop drinking.” His wife grabbed the wine cup from him.
“Woman, what do you know? I can’t stand the frustration if I don’t drink! Other children all attend school, but our child plays truant. I feel so disgraced when walking outside,” said Liu Hongyun in a depressed state.
“It’s… It’s not like you can change a thing doing this, right? If I had a say in it, you shouldn’t have left the child on the mountaintop. Abbot Fangzheng is a monk after all. He probably isn’t capable at teaching children,” grumbled Liu Hongyun’s wife.
Liu Hongyun sighed. “Out of sight, out of mind. I turn frustrated seeing him.”
Just as he said that, the door opened.
Liu Hongyun’s wife looked up and saw that Liu Beijun was back. She immediately smiled and exclaimed, “Little Jun, you are back!”
Liu Hongyun turned abruptly when he heard that. Realizing that Liu Beijun was back, he immediately stood up, picked up his slipper, and was about to unleash a beating while yelling, “Did you sneak back? Go back!”
“Dad! I want to study!” Liu Beijun did not hide it; instead, he screamed it at the top of his voice.
Liu Hongyun’s slipper immediately stopped in front of Liu Beijun’s chest. Liu Beijun was his child after all, so he could not bear to hit him in the head. However, Liu Beijun’s yell left him dumbfounded. He stroked Liu Beijun’s head in a daze and then his own head. He felt warm as he mumbled. “Did I have too much to drink?”
“Dad, you didn’t. I wish to study,” said Liu Beijun.
Liu Hongyun’s slipper fell to the ground as he rubbed his face, saying in disbelief, “Wait a moment. Give me a moment. Dear, I didn’t have too much to drink, right?”
“No, you just drank two cups. Our son really wishes to study.” Liu Hongyun’s wife said with a sobbing tone as she could not help but wipe the tears from her eyes.
Upon seeing his parents in this state, Liu Beijun suddenly had the urge to hit himself. He suddenly realized how much of an ignorant bastard he had been! He had had no idea how good the world outside was without visiting it. Nor had he realized how hard his parents worked for him. Now, he understood and realized. He knew what he wanted to do in the future. He also understood his parents’ thoughts. He felt wistful, but even more so he felt a sense of responsibility. He needed to be accepted into university, both for himself and for his parents!