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Chapter 15: Dossier Records

    Chapter 15: Dossier Records

    Translator: CKtalon  Editor: CKtalon

    As the gray-robed elder watched Patriarch Liu leave, he said with a smile, "Old Fang, Qin family's second young master has already delivered such a show of force the moment he returned. He even exterminated that old demon, Chu Yong. Impressive."

    "He is, after all, an immortal cultivator that has served in the northern borders." The blue-robed man, Commander Fang had a rare look of solemnity as he continued, "The dossier handed down by the imperial government states that he had slain 261 demons. He has even slain three powerful demons at the Connate realm!"

    "He must have cooperated with other cultivators for such a feat, right?" The gray-robed elder said with a chuckle, "After all, he only knocked open the gate of immortality a few years ago. He's probably no match for a demon at the Connate realm in a one-on-one fight."

    However, Commander Fang remarked, "I have been to the northern borders. It is where the demon scourge is held back, resulting in one of the most horrifying struggles between us humans and demons. Cultivators seldom live long in such a land of tragedy. Yet, he had survived three years and slain so many demons. To be honest, I do not even have the confidence fighting him in a one-on-one match."

    "What?" The gray-robed elder was taken aback. "Old Fang, you are at the Connate False Core realm."

    "So what?" Commander Fang shook his head. "For cultivators, the cultivation Dharmic methods are extremely important. For example, consider the sacred lands of Daoists or Buddhists, the heritage there is the zenith when it comes to cultivation. Just one or two of their juniors, despite being at the tenth or eleventh level of Qi Refinement, can easily crush us seniors from smaller sects."

    "Top heritage results in extremely robust foundations! Knocking open the gate of immortality is extremely difficult but once it happens, the condensed Quintessential Essence would be extremely pure. As for people like us from small sects who step into the Connate False Core realm, that bit of power of mine...has purity probably equivalent to juniors from those sacred lands of Daoists or Buddhists, even if they were at the tenth or eleventh Qi Refinement realm."

    The gray-robed elder nodded. "That I know. Disciples of the sacred Daoists and Buddhists lands are naturally impressive! However, is the second young master from Qin Manor also that powerful?"

    "He reached the ninth level of Qi Refinement at thirteen, yet he did not enter the neighboring cultivation sects and instead left home to roam the world. He clearly has great ambitions!" Commander Fang continued, "For him to be able to stay in the northern borders for three years, he probably is from one of the top sects, even if he isn't from the three sacred lands of Daoism. Furthermore, he is not a greenhorn that lacks experience. He is someone who has truly carved a path out of a sea of blood, with more than two hundred confirmed demon kills. Furthermore, it was at the battlefront in the northern borders!"

    "Whoever meets him as an opponent should only quiver in fear." Commander Fang said with a sigh.

    The gray-robed elder nodded slightly and revealed a smile. "Then, I will request for his help. With that niece of mine and this second young master from the Qin family, the chance of success will be higher."

    "County Governor, I have to remind you." Commander Fang said solemnly, "Be it the three sacred lands of Daoism or the other top sects, they value their disciples greatly. As top heritage makes knocking open the gate of immortality very difficult, requiring a great deal of help from the masters and seniors in the sect, it is not easy for them to nurture a successor. In addition, the cultivator has to have the talent and grit before he can knock open the gate of immortality before twenty years of age. Therefore, every disciple is a treasure to them. When a young one is bullied; who knows, an old one might pop out next!"

    "I'm requesting for his help and not making him my enemy," said the gray-robed elder with a smile.

    ...

    Elsewhere at Qin Manor.

    It was a day in spring. The amount of sun was perfect.

    Qin Yun was lying on a chair, leisurely sunbathing. As the sunlight scattered across his body, it felt warm and comfortable.

    "Second Young Master, Second Young Master." A servant came to inform him. "There's someone outside the manor, saying he is sending a letter on behalf of his master, Yu Bai."

    "Yu Bai? One of the four great scholars of Jiangnan, Yu Bai?" Qin Yun's heart stirred. "Invite him in."

    Soon.

    "My master, Yu Bai instructed me to deliver this invitation letter to Young Master Qin." A teenager spoke with restraint as he politely took out a letter and handed it over. A servant from the manor took it and immediately passed it to Qin Yun. "Second Young Master."

    Qin Yun took the letter and gave it a look.

    "Great calligraphy!" Qin Yun praised. After unfurling the letter, he commented, "Cloud Restaurant?"

    "Tell your master that I'll be there punctually," said Qin Yun.

    ...

    Cloud Restaurant was one of the most famous restaurants in Grand Dominance County. It was eight stories tall which was an extremely rare sight.

    Many visitors would come just to climb to its peak to take in the scenery! Cloud Restaurant frequently received guests up to the sixth floor. The seventh floor was split into six private rooms. Although every one of them was luxurious, it was possible to enjoy a meal there by spending some money. However, the eighth floor was a huge private room by itself. Sitting there, one could see through the windows and see the entirety of Grand Dominance City. The scenery was impressive but the price was expensive. Just a meal would cost dozens of taels of silver!

    Today, one of the four great scholars of Jiangnan, Yu Bai had come here early. He was a little nervous.

    "Master, that immortal cultivator is here," a guard hurriedly informed him.

    "Where is he?" Yu Bai surveyed his surroundings.

    "There!" The guard pointed into the far distance.

    Young Master looked over and saw a dashing young nobleman leisurely riding a horse over. There were drooping willows shrouding him along the path so one could barely make out his figure.

    "You can see so clearly despite such a great distance?" Yu Bai looked as his guard.

    "I'm at the eighth level of Qi Refinement. I naturally have better eyesight better than most people." The guard said smugly.

    Yu Bai finished a pot of tea before Qin Yun finally reached the building. There were two reasons for that. Firstly, Grand Dominance City was indeed huge. It was a large city with hundreds of thousands of people in it after all and the Qin Manor was located a distance away from Cloud Restaurant. Secondly, the horse he rode was very slow.

    Soon, he reached the eighth floor.

    "Young Master Qin." Yu Bai had long been standing outside the private room waiting. He immediately cupped his hands and said with a bow.

    Qin Yun casually smiled and said, "Great Scholar Yu Bai. Grand Dominance's scenery in March is renowned throughout the world. Since you are here in Grand Dominance, you should travel more. Just now, as I rode my horse here, the journey was filled with fluttering poplar and willows. It was like a piece of art. Although I'm from Grand Dominance County, the thing I like most over all these years is Grand Dominance in March."

    As he spoke, the duo entered the private room and took their seats.

    "Having come to Grand Dominance, I do find its scenery beautiful. The people are good looking too." Yu Bai said with a smile, "Today, Cloud Restaurant received a twenty-pound Lanyang Silver Whiskers Fish. It was caught early this morning in Lanyang river. It's a rare treat which will be served in a while."

    "Twenty pounds? Lanyang Silver Whiskers Fish can only be found in our Lanyang river. I haven't had that after being away for so many years. However, I have never eaten a twenty-pound Lanyang Silver Whiskers Fish either. The largest I've eaten was only twelve pounds," said Qin Yun. "It looks like I'm in for a treat."

    Delicacies were served one after another.

    Qin Yun ate mouthfuls after mouthfuls. Logically speaking, the number of dishes served was too much for two people but Qin Yun leisurely finished more than half of it without seeing any significant bloating of his stomach.

    "Yes, not bad." After drinking a mouthful of wine, Qin Yun glanced at Yu Bai and gave a faint smile. "Well, I had my fill today. It's time for me to leave."

    With that said, he stood up.

    "Brother Qin Yun, please wait." Yu Bai hurriedly said.

    "Oh?" Qin Yun sat back down. "Great Scholar Yu Bai, it seems like there is a motive behind your invitation."

    "I do have a request," said Yu Bai.

    "Go ahead and tell me," replied Qin Yun.

    Yu Bai said with a sigh, "I had let my youth slip by for forty years and led most of life recklessly. However, some of my old friends have recently died either of age or illnesses. Only then have I realized that I'm not too far from death."

    Qin Yun listened to his monolog. Most people would suffer a drop in vitality past the age of forty. It was also common for them to lose their lives from a serious illness. Living to fifty or sixty before passing away was considered normal. Those that could live to seventy were at an advanced age!

    "I have three children. My daughter has already been married away. Between my two sons, the elder one is studying and can barely be a county scholar. His literary talent is greatly inferior to mine. That's pretty much all he will amount to in his life. My younger son is now nine years old. He's at the four level of Qi Refinement." Yu Bai said, "I'm afraid that after my death, my two sons will not be able to protect the family estate. There's no hope for my elder son but I wish to send my younger son to a cultivation sect. Even if he can't knock open the gate of immortality, he will be able to protect the family estate with strength at the eighth or ninth level of Qi Refinement."

    "However, it is difficult to enter the gates of cultivation sects."

    Yu Bai looked at Qin Yun and said, "Brother Qin Yun, you are a cultivator and must know other cultivators. I wonder if it's possible for you to help my son enter a cultivation sect?"

    Qin Yun sneered. "There are countless mortals seeking immortality. How could entering a cultivation sect be easy? Even the people in second or third-rate cultivation sects would number two or three! A sect with eight cultivators or so would be considered flourishing. Do you know why?"

    Yu Bai listened attentively.

    "It's because as cultivators, we seek the path of unfettered longevity! Not the longevity of our disciples! It's already irritating to deal with matters of the secular world. Some would rather avoid the secular world and cultivate in quiet and remote lands. How many of them are willing to take in disciples? Do you know how much effort is needed to teach a disciple? Do you know how much it delays one's own cultivation?"

    "Furthermore, cultivation stresses the importance of Dharmic methods, money, companionship, and finally, land! Dharmic methods are what cultivation sects have! But for money...hmph. The expenditure of a cultivator is like mountains of gold and silver. How can a cultivation sect nurture so many disciples? Familial Mountain Sect that is closest to us has only three cultivators, including the sect leader." Qin Yun shook his head.

    Cultivators did not want to spend the effort because even after spending it, their disciples might still not be able to knock open the gate of immortality!

    Besides, massive amounts of wealth were needed.

    "If you want your younger son to enter a sect, there are two ways." Qin Yun said, "One, your son has to be extremely talented. For example, he has to be at the ninth level of Qi Refinement at twelve or thirteen years of age! Cultivation sects will be willing to take him in as a disciple without wanting anything in return. Two, you have to produce a hundred thousand taels of silver before the sect might consider taking him in as a disciple."

    Yu Bai said helplessly, "My family doesn't run any businesses. It only earns its money from my literary talent. Even if I were to sell everything I have, it would only be twenty or thirty thousand taels of silver."

    Qin Yun shook his head.

    Although Yu Bai was a great scholar that was known throughout the world, the means of earning money left one wanting. Renowned courtesans might be willing to give him money but how much could they give? By paying him three hundred to five hundred taels of silver, Yu Bai would have to produce a poem for her. If he dedicated poems so frequently, his poems would also turn cheap.

    Now, it was already pretty impressive that he had managed to save twenty to thirty thousand taels of silver past the age of forty. After all, one of the other four great scholars of Jiangnan, Great Scholar Zhou, had degenerated to the point of needing to survive on renowned courtesans.

    "It's not bad having earned twenty to thirty thousand taels of silver. However, to seek immortal cultivation?" Qin Yun said, "Forget it."

    "Brother Qin, please help me. Tell me any condition you have. If I can do it, I'll definitely try my best." Yu Bai said anxiously.

    "There is fairness in everything. Since you want me to help you, what can you do for me?" asked Qin Yun.
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