Translator: CKtalon Editor: CKtalon
With that said, Salted Fish began to leave.
Fangzheng said, “Wait up.”
“What is it? Regretting?” Salted Fish asked.
Fangzheng shook his head gently. “Before leaving, there’s something you need to see. Jingxin, play it for him.”
Salted Fish was puzzled. What was he to watch?
Red Boy held the cell phone and clicked ‘play.’ The video’s name was very long, titled: “Discovery of extraterrestrial beings. Dissection research venue.”
Salted Fish looked at something which looked like an octopus being sliced up, after which it was soaked in medicine or placed under a mirror for scanning… The more he watched, the more horrified he felt.
Red Boy said, “Extraterrestrials are things like you, creatures who aren’t from Earth.”
Then, Red Boy searched in front of him: “How Earthlings deal with extraterrestrials, supernatural creatures.”
There happened to be such a question, and there were hundreds of replies. Red Boy clicked on the thread, and the replies were uniform: “Slice it up!”
“Slice it up and dip it in some spicy sauce. Have a taste of it!”
“Slice it up and braise it!”
“Slice it up and steam it!”
Upon seeing this, Salted Fish’s cold sweat poured down like a waterfall. He subconsciously gulped mouthfuls of saliva.
After seeing all of this, Red Boy said, “As a fellow non-Earthling, I have to remind you that a salted fish which can speak is definitely more valuable for research than any ordinary extraterrestrial. Alright, go on now. Be careful.”
With that said, Red Boy patted Salted Fish on the shoulder and turned to walk away.
Fangzheng also prepared to get up. The instant he turned around, he silently counted. “One, two, three.”
“Master! Wait!” As expected, the moment Fangzheng stepped into the meditation room, Salted Fish could not help but cry out.
Fangzheng was amused the moment he heard that. It had played out as he had expected. Although Salted Fish had lived a long time, he had spent most of his life in the Heavenly Dragon Pond on Mount Numinous. Perhaps his understanding of Buddhas and Bodhisattva far exceeded everyone present, but in this world, he knew nothing about it or about how complicated the human psyche was! He was indeed a little afraid after being intimidated by Fangzheng.
“You agreed to provide meals if I became a formal employee!” Salted Fish shouted.
Fangzheng turned around and nodded. “Of course, This Penniless Monk never lies.”
A bolt of lightning struck the spot in front of Fangzheng, leaving him a little embarrassed. However, his skin had been honed to be extremely thick. He sighed without even blushing or having his heart skip a beat. “What a nice bolt of autumn lightning. From the looks of it, it’s going to snow again. Amitabha.”
With that said, Fangzheng pushed open the door to the meditation room and entered it.
The moment he entered, Fangzheng pressed his chest and mumbled in fear. “I should be more careful with what I say in the future. F**k, that was terrifying!”
Salted Fish looked up into the sky and saw that the skies were clear. As it was evening time, there were even a few especially bright stars. A thought arose in him. “How is there lightning in such good weather?” Then he asked Monkey. “I’ve heard of ‘what a nice spring rain,’ but you have the saying ‘what a nice bolt of autumn lightning’ over here too?”
Master chuckled and said, “If Master said it, probably.”
After that, Monkey walked off.
Salted Fish saw that the others had scattered as well.
He shook his head and left with his mind filled with questions. He jumped into the Heavenly Dragon Pond and continued his carefree life.
Although it was winter, the Heavenly Dragon Pond didn’t freeze, which meant that the water temperature was above zero perennially. As such, not only was it not cold to soak in it, it actually helped resist the cold. Apart from feeling a little hungry and not having fish babies to chat or posture to, making him a little lonely, he felt that everything else was okay.
After the bell and drum sounded, night descended. After Fangzheng returned to the monastery, Salted Fish looked curiously at the bell and drum tower, mumbling. “I didn’t notice at first, but these two things are treasures! The bell’s gong contains the soft singing of Buddha’s voice, and the drum’s gong resonates like a war drum. Could they be the Yongle Bell and Kui War Drum?”
Salted Fish wasn’t great socially, but having lived for so long, just what he had heard from others was enough to make him a walking encyclopedia. He knew quite a lot about the Earth Immortal world, so he could tell a lot of things with just a look.
However, Salted Fish was only slightly puzzled. Having lived on Mount Numinous, what kind of treasures had he not seen? He was already immune to it.
Inside Fangzheng’s meditation room, Red Boy was sitting in front of him, asking curiously, “Master, since that salted fish has lived for so long, he’s quite valuable.”
“Oh? Why do you say so?” Fangzheng asked with a chuckle. In fact, he had also guessed Salted Fish’s true value already, but he just wasn’t too sure. Therefore, he got Red Boy to discuss the matter with him.
Red Boy said, “Having lived nine trillion years, this fellow is definitely one of the oldest things alive. Furthermore, he lived in Mount Numinous. Over there, Buddha, Bodhisattva, and Arhats talk about scriptures every day, about secret news, etc. He must have heard quite a bit. Besides, as you said, he was right in front of Buddha, hearing him chant the scriptures and listening to his preaching. That’s really impressive. This fellow’s brain is a Buddhist encyclopedia! Calling him an Ancestor isn’t wrong at all. If we can really dig out all that he knows, it will be like having a treasure vault!”
Fangzheng narrowed his eyes and nodded slightly. “That’s indeed the case.”
“However, this fellow was thrown out, so he clearly is problematic. Master, it probably won’t be easy if you want to rein him in,” Red Boy said.
Fangzheng chuckled. “This Penniless Monk never thought of reining him in. Just like with you, as long as you do not kill or commit heinous sins, has This Penniless Monk ever tried to rein you in?”
Red Boy was taken aback. Indeed, Fangzheng had never really done much to him. Instead, by following Fangzheng, he had subtly and unknowingly changed some of his flaws. Red Boy scratched his head and chuckled foolishly.
After Red Boy left, Fangzheng looked at Zen Master One Finger’s photograph and sighed. “I never expected that I would one day use your method to bring up disciples. Heh heh. I’m just unsure what kind of people I’ll end up with.”
After saying that, Fangzheng lay down on the bed with his brows furrowed. It appeared like something was on his mind as he couldn’t sleep despite tossing and turning. Finally, Fangzheng sat up and asked, “System, is Jingxin’s cultivation almost done?”
“Why do you ask?” the System asked.
Fangzheng sighed. “When Jingxin’s cultivation is done, doesn’t that mean he will be returning to Bodhisattva’s side?”
“Of course. He’s only one of your missions and doesn’t truly belong to One Finger Monastery.”
Fangzheng felt a little vexed. “Then how far is he from being done?”
“Are you very worried about this? Will you miss him? You have to know that there are few reunions yet many separations in this world. Gathering together is a result of fate, while separation is just normal. Even for a married couple, they can be together for less than a hundred years. After that period, aren’t they too separated for eternity?”
“Don’t tell me nonsense like this. I’m asking you a question.” Fangzheng was truly vexed.
“Heh heh, then tell me why you are asking this question,” the System said.
“By suddenly giving me a Salted Fish with divine powers as a Guardian Protector, are you trying to hint at something?”