nds dirty.
After ten years, the scholarly Sir Song had his skin tanned, his clothes the same as peasants.
He was humble and approachable, even spending a thousand gold on the construction of a bridge.

Unfortunately, the imperial pottery fired from the town’s kilns were not up to standard, whether it had to do with the glaze quality or structure, leaving the pottery masters puzzled.

In the end, someone from the imperial court probably felt the steadfast and diligent Sir Song was not getting the proper recognition for the work he was doing and got him transferred back to the capital.
When Sir Song left, he did not bring along a certain child.

Sir Song and the townsfolk were on good terms.
In addition, with the current overseer, close to Sir Song, paying close attention to Song Jixin, Song Jixin lived out his days in the town without worry.

The origins of the maid, Zhi Gui, were a topic of great discussion.
The people living in Muddyrun said that it happened on a bitter winter, the snow blanketing the roads.
A foreign girl was begging on the road and passed out at the entrance of Song Jixin’s house.
If someone had not found her in time, she would not have made it.

The old man who did chores for the overseer had a different story.
He swore that Sir Song had brought an orphan from a foregin place to keep his illegitimate son Song Jixin company and attend to him.
Sir Song wanted to make up for the fact he could not recognize Song Jixin as his son.

In any case, once Song Jixin gave the girl the name Zhi Gui, the father-son relationship between Sir Song and Song Jixin was all but confirmed.
The wealthy of the town knew that there was an inkstone that Sir Song treasured most.
The words “Zhi Gui” were engraved on the inkstone.

Song Jixin awoke from his stupor and smiled brightly.
“For some reason, I still think of that damn four-legged snake.
What do you think, Zhi Gui? I even threw it into Chen Pingan’s yard, and it still ran into our house.
Say, could it be that Chen Pingan’s shithole is so shabby and crummy that not even a snake is willing to enter it?”

Zhi Gui thought about it seriously and then replied, “Some things are just fate, right?”

Song Jixin gave her a thumbs-up and said, “Yes, some things are just fate! Just like Chen Pingan is fated to continue living that crummy life of his.”

Zhi Gui chose to stay silent.

Song Jixin said to himself, “Once we leave town, I’ll leave Chen Pingan to take care of the things in the house.
Will that guy sneak some stuff out while I’m away, hmm?”

Zhi Gui said softly, “Sir, that can’t be…”

Song Jixin smiled.
“Hey, Zhi Gui, do you know what it means to embezzle?”

Zhi Gui blinked, her eyes like a cloudless sky.

Song Jixin smiled and looked towards the south.
His voice containing a hint of yearning, he said, “I heard there are a lot more books in the capital.
More books than you can imagine.”

At that moment, the storyteller said, “Although there are supposedly no more progenitor dragons left, the descendants of the progenitor dragons like the flood dragon and horned dragon still exist in the mortal world… perhaps…”

The old man slowed down to add suspense.
When he saw that the audience had no reaction, bored, he continued, “Perhaps… they’re hidden among us!”

Song Jixin yawned.

A locust leaf fell from the tree and fluttered, falling in front of Song Jixin.
Song Jixin reached out and grabbed the leaf, catching it between his two fingers.

Chen Pingan planned to go to the east gate to collect the five copper owed to him.
When he came by the old locust tree, he saw the locust leaves fluttering before his eyes.
He reached out, wanting to catch one of them.

Then, a breeze came by, and the leaf that was just in his grasp slipped past his fingers.

A strong boy, Chen Pingan took a step to the side.
He wanted to intercept the leaf.

However, the leaf did a somersault and turned away.

Chen Pingan refused to give up.
He scuttled around, jumping around.
He tried several times, but it was to no avail.
He could not grab the locust leaf.


A boy in a school robe brushed shoulders with Chen Pingan.

The boy, who was skipping class, continued walking.
Unbeknownst to the schoolboy, a locust leaf laid on his shoulders.

In his stall, the taoist closed his eyes and entered a state of meditation.
He murmured, “Who said lady luck has no favorites?”

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