Chu Li looked at Yang Baoshu for a while and sensed the change in his behavior. "You seem to have some good news."
"... Yes... Yes." Yang Baoshu's gaze subconsciously fell on Xiao Shi again.
Xiao Shi's snow soft arm was resting against her chin. Her porcelain face emitted a gentle glow of warmth under the dim lighting of the lamps. It was pale with a dash of rosy pink.
Yang Baoshu did not think that there was such a beauty in this world.
Xiao Shi stared at the chess pieces without moving. Her dark brows were slightly furrowed as if she was discontented and unsatisfied.
Yang Baoshu felt as though his heart was going to melt.
Chu Li prodded for more information. "So, what's the good news?"
"Oh, oh, I've become a headman in the association." Yang Baoshu tried hard to meet Chu Li's gaze but couldn't help to steal a few glances at the beauty sitting opposite him.
He was hoping that she would lift her head to look at him after hearing of his promotion.
Chu Li watched on with interest. He spoke warmly, "Not bad, the wage as a headman is quite attractive. It's enough to support your whole family's livelihood. Your mother doesn't need to overwork herself any longer."
"Yes." Yang Baoshu let out a wide smile.
However, he was quite disappointed that Xiao Shi did not once lift her head to look at him!
"There's bound to be some gang fights in the future but remember not to hastily charge ahead. Use your Agile Monkey Fist technique to outwit your opponent," Chu Li solemnly advised.
Yang Baoshu regained his high spirits. He nodded firmly. "Yes, sir."
"Alright!" Xiao Shi let out a long sigh before gently placing a white chess piece on the table. She was smiling victoriously.
Her smile was like a blossoming flower to Yang Baoshu who felt as if his whole world had suddenly lit up. The sun in his previously desolate world was now shining brightly!
Chu Li was starting to get worried that Yang Baoshu would visually-overindulge to the point of no return. He handed the clean plates back to him. "Thank you for the meal. Off you go now."
"... Then I shall excuse myself." Yang Baoshu begrudgingly turned to leave. He took his time up the steps. As he was climbing over the wall, he turned around for one last look but only saw Xiao Shi pressing Chu Li to make his next move.
Yang Baoshu was filled with sorrow and slowly made his way down.
"Bang!""Ouch!" He had lost his footing and fell straight to the ground.
"What the hell are you up to?" Madam Zhou came out to check on him. She snapped. "Have you lost your mind? The plates are broken!"
"Mother, I'm okay," Yang Baoshu responded.
Madam Zhou snorted. "I know you're alright, but the plates are broken!"
Chu Li shook his head, he was laughing as he heard the dialogue from the other side of the wall.
Xiao Shi also heard this, and she asked, "Your disciple?"
Her cold shoulder towards Yang Baoshu was for his own good.
She was well aware of her charm. If she had spoken to him, it would have teased him into prolonging his infatuation. Ignoring him was the best way to handle the situation.
Chu Li shook his head. "He's pure in nature - a rare find these days. Gave him a pointer or two."
"You're asking for trouble." Xiao Shi was staring at the chessboard, and she was grinning cheekily.
They were from two different worlds and were miles apart in terms of status. They would not meet again after Xiao Shi had left the place. There was no point in building a connection with him.
Chu Li said, "He's a good seedling. With proper nurturing, he may grow into a towering tree."
Qing Yun Town was very close to the Fairy's Capital - its location was of great importance. Planting an ally may be helpful to Chu Li in the future.
"He looks so stupid, what can he possibly become!" Xiao Shi replied.
She had great respect for Chu Li's cool head and wittiness. He was passive and unaffected by her beauty. It was a refreshing change from those who were head over heels for her.
Chu Li shook his head disapprovingly. "Circumstances create heroes. Don't look down on him."
Chu Li had often walked around during his free time. By now, he had the whole of Qing Yun Town figured out.
The Swan Goose Association in Qing Yun Town was a crummy thing. It was basically a group of poor people gathered together that nobody dared to bully.
However, their intelligence gathering was sharp and didn't draw any attention. They could do many things that others couldn't.
"Just as long as you don't forget what we came here for," Xiao Shi remarked while staring at the chessboard.
Chu Li smiled. "Let's move somewhere else after a few more days."
Xiao Shi lifted her head to look at Chu Li. "Move again? Don't tell me it's to a place even shittier than here?"
"Are you getting used to living here? How does it compare to the High Duke's Public House?" Chu Li asked.
"What do you think?" Xiao Shi snorted.
Chu Li smiled. "I don't know what our next location will be like."
"Hopefully it'll be fine."
Yang Baoshu exchanged a few words with Madam Zhou before lying down on his bed absent-mindedly. He raised his head to stare at the wooden beams above him; his mind was filled with Xiao Shi's porcelain face.
His thoughts were filled with distractions and his heart was a maelstrom of sweetness as well as sorrow. Yang Baoshu tossed and turned about, he was unfortunately totally unable to fall asleep. He got up to push open the windows and then stared at the moon.
Who was she to Mr. Chu?
Judging by the way they talked, it seemed as though she was Mr. Chu's wife. Even if she wasn't his wife, they were definitely close.
To be able to converse so intimately with such a beauty was god-sent happiness. For Mr. Chu to be able to play chess with her was probably a reward for his past life!
Recalling the earlier scene, Yang Baoshu was reminded of his humble origins. He couldn't help but let out a long sigh. For the first time, he was feeling indescribable sorrow.
As he continued to stare at the moon, he was suddenly struck by a thought. A strong impulse stirred within him about what to do!
Mr. Chu was not old, perhaps only a few years older than him. However, Mr. Chu was already a master of the martial arts world; add on to this the fact that Mr. Chu was not exactly lacking in the silver and looks department.
Now, look at him. They were both normal men, and yet, why was there such a huge gap in their accomplishments?
If he could somehow be like Mr. Chu now that would be a life worth living. Mr. Chu was so unlike himself who was average and boring.
The second Yang Baoshu thought of this, he leaped out of the window and into his garden so that he could practice his fist technique under the moonlight.
Yang Baoshu was now only a headman. If he wanted to be as amazing as Mr. Chu, then he needed to become a commander, an association leader or an Innate Master. The road ahead was no doubt going to be harsh and winding.
Yang Baoshu trained his fist technique for a while before leaping back on his bed. He crossed his legs and did some meditation.
Chu Li was sitting in the yard and saw Yang Baoshu's thoughts the whole time. He shook his head as he laughed out loud.
It seemed that all men were alike - the source of their inspiration was always women. The Yang Baoshu that had seen Xiao Shi was not the same Yang Baoshu from before he had seen her.
Chu Li saw himself in Yang Baoshu.
However, Chu Li also knew that the world was cruel and that not everything always went according to plan. When Chu Li had first left the temple and arrived at the High Duke's Public House, he had wild ambitions to win the hearts of all the beauties under the sky. He planned on reaching infinite power so that he could become the first master.
However, his thoughts had changed in such a short period of time. Winning Xiao Qi's heart was better than all the beauties in the world. Unfortunately, his feeble state was prohibiting him.
Although Chu Li was already a great Rank 2 Chief in the High Duke's Public House, when compared to King An and His Majesty, he was subpar.
His cultivation level was that of a Grandmaster's, but he still had to look up to Enlightened Masters!
To become an Enlightened Master, he had three choices To head to Tempest Temple, become the emperor, or master the Heavenly Demonic Power. Right now, he was still trying to master the Heavenly Demonic Power. If it did not work out, then he would turn his thoughts to becoming the emperor.
Chu Li stared at the vast night sky as he stood under the moonlight. His heart was turbulent with all these heavy thoughts.
What was Xiao Qi up to? Was she so focused on cultivating that she had forgotten about him? Did he pop up in her thoughts every once in a while? Would her heart flutter when she thought about him?
Her cultivation training was emotional detaching, so what was the point of them meeting up again anyway?
As Chu Li was thinking about this, he slowly channeled the Heavenly Demonic Power under the moonlight.
He suddenly frowned and then turned to look towards the East.
In the radiance of the moonlight, he saw three men appear before him in the blink of an eye. They were threatening and hard to detect, like a fog that impaired one's vision.
The three elders shared a gloomy exterior. They glared at him coldly.
The lean elder in the middle stared at Chu Li for a while before asking firmly, "Where is the second young lady?"