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After another long period of time, Chen Chang Sheng finished explaining the contents of the paper, and Luo Luo hurriedly carried over some cooled tea.
He took the teacup and drank from it, and then said: “Your situation is different from Tang Thirty-Six’s, because unlike for humans, it is rare for someone of the yao race to practise human cultivation methods and attempt to break into the next realm, therefore we have to be extra cautious. However, if you really could mould your Core to resemble the Ethereal Palace, there should be a possibility of success.
Luo Luo nodded her head and replied: “Rest assured, Sir. Only after I am completely ready, and you have approved of it, will I attempt to break through this realm.”
Chen Chang Sheng looked at her seriously and said: “Actually, I’ve been thinking, you really do not need to take this risk.”
Since she was the yao race’s only Princess, she owned many things: the people by her side that served her were all legends on the same level of Jin Yu Lu. Because of this, Luo Luo really did not need to cultivate so diligently, and especially, it was not necessary for her to use human cultivation methods and risk her life.
“The cultivation method used in the White Emperor’s clan is only suitable for males: females have absolutely no opportunities to reach the highest level, and yet, my parents, their Royal Majesties, have me as their only child.” As Luo Luo spoke, her voice became lower and lower, while she drooped her head, appearing rather dejected. Then, all of the sudden, she raised her head and resolutely said: “That is why I have to come up with other methods.”
Chen Chang Sheng was silent for a moment, and no longer tried to sway her. He took out a few prescriptions from his bosom and handed them over to her.
Seeing his serious expression, Luo Luo knew that these prescriptions were not ordinary, and she alertly looked all around, making sure that no maids had dared to come close. It was only then that she turned back around to receive the prescriptions. To her surprise, she saw that the surface of the table was covered with many medicinal herbs, fruits, and root-like objects.
The medicinal herbs had already been arranged neatly by type, with a name tagged upon each binding. The roots still had remnants of fresh soil, while some of the fruits even had dew remaining on their surface ——she was a bit amazed, and didn’t know how Chen Chang Sheng had carried those things in; where were they previously put on his body?
Chen Chang Sheng did not provide an explanation. He told her the names of all of those medicinal herbs, fruits, and roots, and even gave simple explanations for each one’s medicinal effect. Then, he pointed at the prescriptions and said: “Li Palace should have medicine refining masters. If there is one that you trust, ask him to help you; things such as temperature control and other details have already been written down.”
Luo Luo asked: “What will these pills be used for?”
“Their main purpose is to foster a solid foundation. It is the same medicine I am currently giving Tang Thirty-Six to adjust his body. Only, it is inconvenient to come to the palace every day, and moreover, refined pills should be more effective, so I thought of this method, hoping that when you start to break through your current realm, it can be of use; it should at least be able to lower the risk.”
Chen Chang Sheng waited for her to put the prescription away, and then said: “After today, I will be using all of my effort to prepare for the Grand Examination, and might not come to see you frequently, so take care of yourself.”
Luo Luo wasn’t sure why he cared so deeply about the Grand Examination, but during those several months she stayed at Orthodox Academy, she was made very clear of this point. Thinking about how her tutor, even at this time, did not forget her, and was treating her so attentively, she couldn’t help but feel moved.
Then, she remembered what Jin Yu Lu had previously said, how Chen Chang Sheng had suffered ridicule and humiliation on the divine avenue, and her thin eyebrows stirred up——she had been moved just a moment ago, but she was now very angry. She lowered her voice and said: “Those people actually dared to treat Sir so rudely, they’re far too impudent!”
As she said those words, she was like a small tiger, still cute, but also rather majestic.
Chen Changsheng extended out his hand and rubbed her head, laughing: “Now this is more fitting of the White Emperor’s daughter.”
Luo Luo clicked her tongue, and her majestic atmosphere immediately dissipated.
It was only after having dealt with all of the important matters that Chen Chang Sheng had time to be concerned about her current situation. He asked: “Are you satisfied living here?”
Hearing those words, Luo Luo gave out a pout, and replied in an aggrieved tone: “I’m bored to death; I miss the Hundred Herb Garden, I miss our school, and I miss Sir.”
By now, Chen Chang Sheng knew that the space inside this Green Leaf World, was officially called Little Li Palace, and was linked to the Pope through his divine sense (think spirit sense). If Luo Luo still wanted to act how she had acted in the past and sneak out, she definitely would not be able to do it. Although Little Li Palace was vast, it was not connected to the outside world.
“I’ll think of a plan.”
Chen Chang Sheng said those words very naturally, even though with his current status and strength, rationally speaking, he would not be able to do anything. However, he had gotten used to treating Luo Luo’s affairs as his own, and it didn’t occur to him that this made him seem arrogant and ignorant of his own limits.
Fortunately, he and Luo Luo were currently the only ones in the room, and Luo Luo absolutely did not think this way. She said: “The Grand Examination is coming up soon, and Sir should rest and carefully prepare. You certainly should not get distracted because of me, since I know that you want to take first place.”
Right now, she and Tang Thirty-Six’s faith in Chen Chang Sheng had already started to approach blind faith, far greater than even Chen Chang Sheng’s own faith in himself. Regarding this, Chen Chang Sheng was very moved and grateful, and every time he lost confidence in himself, she and Tang Thirty-Six would always use their words and attitude to help him revive his confidence.
“Just then I saw that you were biting your brush again?” Chen Chang Sheng thought of an issue, and stared at her as he talked.
Luo Luo got a little flustered. At Orthodox Academy, Chen Chang Sheng had told her several times that her brush wasn’t clean, and that biting it could easily make her ill… she had with great difficulty corrected this bad habit, but after she arrived at Little Li Palace, there was no one to manage her, and she reverted back to her old habit again, biting her brush.
She nervously tried to explain: “Teacher, recently, my teeth have been growing in, so it’s very itchy, and sometimes I can’t endure it.”
Up to this point, Chen Chang Sheng had thought that she was only eleven or twelve years old, but logically speaking, an eleven or twelve year old should have already finished growing in all of her permanent teeth. Hearing those words, he couldn’t help but be a bit nervous, and after using fresh water and medicinal powder to wash his hands, he had Luo Luo open her small mouth: “Ah…”
Luo Luo obediently let out an “ah” sound, which she proceeded to drag out for a long time.
Chen Chang Sheng inserted his finger into her mouth and carefully examined her teeth. He discovered that she truly was growing in her permanent teeth, and that there wasn’t any big problem.
“Teacher, my permanent teeth will keep on growing in until I’m sixteen years old. It’s really annoying.”
Because her mouth was open, Luo Luo’s words were unclear, and the word Sir (Xian Sheng – Sensei) sounded like “Sheng Sheng”, like she was calling out Chen Chang Sheng’s nickname.
It was only at this moment that Chen Chang Sheng remembered: Luo Luo was the yao race’s Princess, and in many areas, was different from humans.
He washed his hands, and then gave her another prescription, which had nothing to do with treating illness, but was a way to increase her appetite. He also told her how to make a chew stick.
“Only iron tree sticks will work.”
Luo Luo picked up that pen. On the tail end of it was many distinct bite marks: “This pen is made from iron tree, or else it would break from one bite.”
Chen Chang Sheng was reminded of the White Emperor’s bloodline; creating a chew stick that could hold up was not easy. He looked toward the flower pots outside of the door and asked: “Those are iron tree saplings, but they are different from the ones shown in books.”
Luo Luo replied: “Those are banyan tree sprouts, but I don’t know whether they will grow to maturity.”
At Orthodox Academy, there was a lake, and next to the lake there was a big banyan tree. She and Chen Chang Sheng often stood atop the banyan tree while watching the setting sun.
Chen Chang Sheng laughed: “They will definitely grow to maturity.”
The autumn light passed through many windows, and when it arrived at the very deepest part of the real Li Palace, it became even more light and refreshing, and yet it was only after it reflected off of the top of the Crystal Throne that it once again began to glitter brilliantly. The clear and clean crystal was carved into the form of a lotus flower, and in the centre of the lotus flower there was a crown. The crown was divided into two colours, one black and one white, with no distinct dividing line between them, and yet, the two shades were not mixed into a grey. Rather, it was quite mystical, fused together in an incomprehensible way. It was extremely perfect; emitting a divine aura.
On the side of the lotus flower seat, there was a chair carved out of the trunk of a black flower tree, and on the chair sat an elderly man. The elderly man was wearing a loose hemp robe, and his grey hair tumbled over his shoulders, like a waterfall in winter that hadn’t quite managed to completely solidify into ice.
That elderly man was currently reading a book.
Opposite to the elderly man was another elderly man.
The Education Board’s Archbishop, Mei Li Sha, who was one of the few people from the same generation as the Pope, was naturally already very old. Every time the palace and Education Board’s clergy saw the age spots on his face, they would always become unboundedly concerned, always worried that this venerable elder would one day silently re-join the stars in the sky.
Mei Li Sha himself was unable to see the wrinkles and old age spots on his face, because ever since he grew his first white hair, over two hundred years ago, he refused to look in the mirror ever again, no matter if it was his own chamber’s luxurious copper mirror, or a mirror created from the coalescence of True Essence. Watching oneself grow old was a torturous process, especially for this type of person, for whom growing old could stretch through a process as long as hundreds or close to a thousand years, making it even more difficult to bear.
Not seeing, is not equal to not knowing; even if you were to blind yourself, the starry sky will still exist, Mei Li Sha himself very clearly knew that he had grown old, because he was growing more and more fond of sleeping——different from those normal elderly people who got up very early every morning at the third hour, the older he got, the more he liked to sleep. He always felt that his body was adapting in advance to his eternal rest.
Within the current Orthodoxy, he was the one with the longest history; due to recent events involving Orthodox Academy, he was considered by many to be the leader of the tradition faction of the Orthodoxy, or at least the figurehead; using these events to challenge the authority of the Pope. The Archbishop had long resided at the Orthodoxy’s Education Board and hadn’t stepped foot into Li Palace for quite some time. He even neglected to participate in the regular Seminars of Radiance, adding to the credibility of the rumours surrounding him; who would have thought that he would appear in Li Palace today, let alone to be sleeping here.
A sound rang out lightly, but the inside of the palace hall was exceedingly quiet, so the sound was very clear.
Mei Li Sha opened his eyes, and for a period of time his eyes were a bit muddy, before they gradually restored their clarity. He looked towards the book-reading hempen-robed elder opposite him, and while wobbling, stood up and walked over, humbly bending over his body and looking towards the plant in the flower pot next to the elderly man.
The flower pot was of a light grey colour, very ordinary; in the streets of the Capital, one could buy three of them for about a hundred coins. The plant planted in the flower pot was very strange; it had a healthy young stalk and several branches, but only had one leaf. That leaf was very green, and its vein network was very clear.
Previously, that clear “pa” sound had come from that green leaf, the very front end of the leaf seemed to be trembling——it wasn’t the green leaf that was trembling, but its vein network that was. The degree of the trembling was so slight that in the entire palace, perhaps only he and that hempen-robed elder were able to see it.
“That young Highness has become angry to this degree; you actually have the frame of mind to be reading that book?”
Mei Li Sha looked towards that hempen-robed elder, in a respectful, yet cosy manner.
That hempen-robed elder put away his book, lifted his head, and looked towards that flower pot. He had a very ordinary appearance; the most distinctive part was his extremely deep eye sockets. If one looked from the side, it looked very much like the entrance to an abyss of terror, but if one looked from the front, one would be able to see ocean-like tranquil azure eyes.