I Have Medicine - Chapter 401 - Conversion of the Zhang Family
Chapter 401 – Conversion of the Zhang Family
However, this hidden, little thought was snuffed out before it could be realized — Just as Gu Zuo was about to close his eyes again, Gongyi Tianheng opened his own, and met Gu Zuo’s dumbstruck gaze.
Out of a conditioned reflex, Gu Zuo revealed a glittering smile: “Big brother, good morning!”
Tianheng’s eyes slightly squinted. Shortly thereafter, his lips cracked a grin: “Morning.”
A second later, Gu Zuo hurriedly leaped up: “I should get out of bed and wash up first!”
After he finished speaking, he rushed into the bathroom like a wisp of smoke.
Tianheng slowly sat up, and walked into the bathroom at a languid pace.
At this moment, Gu Zuo was brushing his teeth in front of the mirror.
Meanwhile, without any sense of shame, Tianheng stood in front of the toilet, and pulled down his underwear…
Gu Zuo: “! ! !”
The next moment, he shut the small door that partitioned the bathroom!
Tianheng raised an eyebrow: “Ah Zuo, what’s wrong?”
Gu Zuo swallowed a mouthful of saliva: “Nothing!”
Tianheng didn’t pursue the matter. He only leisurely took care of his business inside, flushed the toilet, and opened the door again.
At this time, Gu Zuo had already finished brushing his teeth at lightning speeds, and was in the middle of wiping his face with a freshly-washed towel. He made room for Tianheng at the sink.
Tianheng brought out a brand-new set of toiletries, and slowly started to wash his face and brush his teeth.
Actually, both of them were practically free of dust and contaminants, and didn’t need to clean themselves like this. It was just that, when all was said and done, they had good living habits from the very beginning. After sleeping, they would continue these habits every time.
However, due to all sorts of reasons, Gu Zuo couldn’t help but feel a little embarrassed even during such habits.
Tianheng seemed totally oblivious.
After struggling for a short while, Gu Zuo decided not to let his thoughts diverge again.
Soon after, the two swiftly put on the clothes that the Zhang Family prepared, and they went downstairs.
Gu Qi was already up and about.
Gu Zuo saw that his family’s dad was sitting in the living room, but he didn’t feel that this was unusual. It was because, in his vague impressions, after father was taken away, dad insisted on going to bed and getting up early — This was originally a habit of father, but afterwards, it probably became one of the only ways they could cherish his memory.
Gu Qi called out in greetings: “Morning.”
Gu Zuo smiled and waved: “Morning, dad.”
Gu Qi winked: “Son, how was your sleep last night?”
Gu Zuo paused, and quickly spoke without his face blushing or breath hitching: “I slept very well.”
Gu Qi’s gaze fell onto Tianheng.
Tianheng walked over in an unhurried manner: “Hello, Uncle Gu.”
Gu Qi couldn’t tell anything from Tianheng’s side, but he felt that there hadn’t been any groundbreaking progress made in terms of their feelings of affection — Could it be that his son still hadn’t confessed yet? Or should it be said that he had misinterpreted Tianheng’s thoughts?
In Gu Qi’s eyes, Tianheng was still calm and undisturbed. Instead, it was Gu Zuo who gave him a look that said, “Dad, you shouldn’t stare so obviously.”
Gu Qi: “…”
Whatever. This young man could have fun tormenting himself.
Right at this time, someone pressed the doorbell.
Gu Zuo was the youngest, and hurriedly scampered to open the door. As he raised his head, he happened to see the face of Zhang Bohan, who had been following them around yesterday. But this time, Zhang Bohan wasn’t the only person present. There was a elderly man with a dignified bearing who shared some resemblance to Zhang Bohan, as well as quite a few bodyguards in the back.
Zhang Bohan showed a smiling expression: “We prepared some breakfast at home. It was considered pretty good, so we came over to give some to you guys. I hope we’re not bothering anyone.”
Gu Zuo shook his head, and pulled the door open: “Not at all. Please come in. It just so happens that we haven’t eaten breakfast yet.”
As Zhang Bohan switched to indoor shoes and came inside, he gave an introduction to Gu Zuo: “This is my grandfather. This time, he’s here to pay a visit to Mister Gongyi as well as the person whom Mister Gongyi has been thinking about all the while. Please don’t take offense to our presumptions.”
Zhang Huiguo also gave a nod to Gu Zuo.
Gu Zuo said: “It’s fine. Everyone is just in time to eat together.”
After that, several people went inside in quick succession.
The bodyguards’ movements were very efficient. They swiftly carried cases of food into the dining room, and all kinds of breakfast foods were laid out.
Meanwhile, Zhang Bohan and Zhang Huiguo had already exchanged pleasantries with Tianheng and Gu Zuo. Their bearings seemed very natural.
Gu Zuo quietly took measure of them, but he could sense the happiness and eagerness they concealed extremely deeply.
…But no matter how happy or eager they were, the meal would come before any discussion.
Hence, everyone sat at the table.
The hospitality that the Zhang Family showed Tianheng was indeed classy. When eating breakfast, the food ingredients were all selected with great care. First thing in the morning, one would experience a banquet that smelled, looked, and tasted great. However, they didn’t truly understand Tianheng. Although the items they brought out were good, it wasn’t really capable of filling Tianheng’s stomach. It only allowed him to try different flavors.
One could only say that the intentions were acceptable.
On the contrary, it had been a long time since Gu Zuo had eaten this many “modern delicacies”. This time around, he chowed down with a delightful mood.
Upon seeing this, Tianheng attentively passed some more dishes, which were happily eaten by Gu Zuo.
Zhang Bohan and Zhang Huiguo didn’t have too big of an appetite. Yet, when they witnessed this scene, they discovered that Tianheng showered Gu Zuo with great doting and favor. For a moment, they couldn’t help but call to mind the common saying, “Birds of a feather flock together.” Since the relationship between Mister Gongyi and this Gu Zuo was so familiar and intimate, Gu Zuo probably wasn’t lacking in good points, right? Moreover, when they observed Gu Zuo up close, while the other party seemed like an ordinary teenager at first glance, they realized that the spirited and elegant air that surrounded him was just like Tianheng had drawn. He was clearly extraordinary.
Once Tianheng and the others finished eating breakfast, everyone sat down on the sofas in the living room. Zhang Bohan saw his chance, and asked Tianheng: “Mister Gongyi, the Zhang Family’s people who’ve come to learn have already arrived. Would they be allowed to enter?”
Tianheng faintly nodded his head: “Let them in.”
Zhang Bohan wore a hint of a happy expression, and quickly made a phone call.
Subsequently, the doorbell rang again. He hastily went over, opened the door, and let the others in.
The number of people who entered was exactly nine.
Their ages basically ranged from fifteen to twenty-five. Each person’s stature was tall and straight, and their looks were clear and bright. From the seemingly non-existent similarities between their appearances, it could be seen that they were all members of the Zhang Family. Whether it was the main branch or the cadet branches, they all possessed the bloodline of the Zhang Family.
Zhang Bohan smiled: “Including me, there are ten people in total.” Soon after, he hesitated somewhat, “Would we still be able to successfully practice martial arts at our ages? If our ages are too high, we can switch them out for another batch of people to learn.”
Once these words were uttered, those nine younger generations of the Zhang Family carried some expectations. They looked over — It was only natural that they hoped that they could learn.
Tianheng looked at these people, and said to Gu Zuo: “Ah Zuo, how about you go and check their aptitudes?”
Currently, Gu Zuo’s eyes and heart were filled with thoughts of romantically pursuing his big brother. Now that Tianheng asked him for help so tenderly, he was naturally unwilling to shirk his duties! At once, he replied: “Okay, I’ll give them a look!”
After he finished speaking, Gu Zuo swiftly came over to Zhang Bohan’s side, and grabbed his wrist.
He decided to start from the oldest.
Zhang Bohan was a little astonished. Although he didn’t doubt that Tianheng might’ve had methods to check on them, he didn’t expect that the person “looking at them” wouldn’t be Tianheng. Rather, it was this Gu Zuo, whom they were tasked to find — Could it be that someone so young really had this capability?
Of course, he buried these kinds of questions in his heart, and didn’t voice these potentially aggravating thoughts aloud.
Tianheng took the initiative to say: “Ah Zuo is my personal pharmacist. Normally, he takes care of my health, but he can also concoct pills, refine medicine, and assist me in practicing martial arts.”
Zhang Bohan was startled: “Refine medicine?”
Tianheng faintly smiled: “Let’s finalize this matter first. Any concerns related to medicine refinement can be discussed later.”
On the side, Zhang Huiguo listened to this, and his gaze flitted.
From this Mister Gongyi’s words, he picked up on several things.
— Maybe this time, their Zhang Family really had come across a grand opportunity!
On the other side of things, Gu Zuo didn’t dare use profound qi to probe Zhang Bohan’s weak and frail body. Instead, he divided a thread of psychic power, and rapidly checked Zhang Bohan’s situation. After looking around, he discovered that Zhang Bohan’s basic body structure was no different from that of his big brother. Although his muscles and bones were older, if he took some medicinal pills to nurse his health, practicing martial arts wouldn’t be a problem. Merely, due to his age and the scarcity of this world’s ambient qi, if Zhang Bohan’s comprehension skills were good, perhaps he could reach the Xiantian Realm and live to be one hundred fifty years old.
However, wanting to reach the Immortal Realm and extending his lifespan to three hundred years was incredibly challenging. It was almost impossible — In actuality, let alone Zhang Bohan, the peak that other martial artists, even the youngest among them, could reach was just Xiantian.
In this world, there basically weren’t any conditions that allowed one to reach the Immortal Realm.
But after giving it a second thought, if one could only reach Xiantian at most, so long as their body cultivation method was good enough and their financial resources were powerful enough, the age that one started practicing martial arts wasn’t that important. The most crucial points were the person’s comprehension and physical aptitudes, the size of their meridians, the level of variation in their attributes, and that they were willing to work hard. So long as they were still in the prime of their lives, there wouldn’t be any problems.
After making some considerations, Gu Zuo reported to Tianheng: “Young Master Zhang’s meridians are fine. Once I get some medicinal pills for him and the others to consume, they can forcefully generate a thread of true qi to test their attributes. If their attributes are alright, they can practice martial arts with big brother.”
Zhang Bohan listened Gu Zuo’s words. His original frame of mind, which had already relaxed slightly, became a little tense upon hearing that he still had to test his attributes — On the off-chance that his attributes were lousy, what was he supposed to do?
Shortly thereafter, Gu Zuo held the wrists of the remaining nine people one after another. He found that everyone’s meridians were wide. He was very satisfied. In this respect, the Zhang Family had decent eyesight. The bodies of the chosen Zhang Family members were in good health and rarely got sick. The inner qualities of the bodies of such people were also hardly lacking.
Zhang Bohan peered at Gu Zuo with an inquiring look in his eyes.
Gu Zuo smiled and said: “Everyone’s meridians are pretty good.”
Zhang Bohan sighed in relief. The other Zhang Family members felt more at ease, too.
Zhang Huiguo silently nodded.
Since they knew that Tianheng would provide guidance, the Zhang Family’s main branch, cadet branches, and retainer families held discussions almost throughout the entire night yesterday. Due to numerous considerations in terms of interests as well as checks and balances, these nine people were finally confirmed. The best-case scenario was that all of them could pass. Otherwise, they would need to select people again. Many things would be disrupted, and would have to be rebalanced.
Following this, Gu Zuo took out a bottle from his sleeve.
Contained within this bottle was a type of trick pill. Originally, it was the effect that “forcefully generated true qi” which piqued his interest. As a result, some were refined a long time ago. However, because it had been so long, they had been thrown into a corner and neglected. If it wasn’t for the present need, he wouldn’t have thought about them at all.
On the Central Continent, before ordinary martial artists joined some organizations, they had to be at the Blood Refining Realm at the very least. Once they reached this point, they would grasp a type of Testing Jade Stone, and infuse their true qi to test their respective general attributes. However this kind of jade stone was relatively crude. Although it was useful to both martial artists and pharmacists, it could only make approximate measurements. If someone didn’t have true qi, then there was no way to test them — Unless it came to some large organizations. They had items that could directly determine one’s attributes without the need for true qi, but not just anyone could get a hold of those things.
Gu Zuo only had this type of jade stone. Thus, if he wanted to test the Zhang Family members’ attributes, he needed to force them to generate a thread of true qi.
The Zhang Family members looked at the bottle in Gu Zuo’s hand.
Gu Zuo calmly and unhurriedly uncorked it, and poured out ten pearl-like, luminescent medicinal pills. He called Zhang Bohan to take them: “Each person takes one pill. Swallow it before grasping this jade stone.”
While speaking, he rummaged around his sleeves again, and pulled out a Testing Jade Stone.
Zhang Bohan hurriedly received the offered medicinal pills, and quickly passed them out to the other Zhang Family members. After these people held the pills, they smelled a medicinal fragrance wafting out that gladdened the heart and refreshed the mind. Unexpectedly, these pills were warm, lustrous, and glossy. It made them have a peculiar feeling.
At the same time, the gazes they used to look at Gu Zuo became somewhat reverential.
A pharmacist…seemed very powerful.
Gu Zuo didn’t care about what they were thinking, and spoke up: “Young Master Zhang, you can take the medicinal pill first.”
Zhang Bohan wasn’t completely free of doubts concerning the pills, but if he wanted the Zhang Family to break through to another realm, how could he accomplish that without taking risks? Since he met Tianheng and successfully helped Tianheng find Gu Zuo, he was recognized as the family heir during last night’s family meeting. As the heir, he was able to directly obtain a slot to practice martial arts, but he also had to fight and take charge when taking risks was necessary.
As a result, Zhang Bohan steeled himself, and swallowed the medicinal pill.
In the blink of an eye, he felt a strange, warm current arising from an area slightly below his navel. It instantly flowed throughout his body by following certain paths. He promptly reacted. Those flowing paths were definitely meridians!
Immediately following which, Zhang Bohan didn’t dare hesitate, and tightly gripped the jade stone with his hand. At the exact same time, he seemed to sense an intense attractive force on that jade stone that rapidly absorbed the warm current in his body. As for the jade stone itself, it suddenly underwent a change!
It actually became a fiery-red color!
Of course, after the Zhang Family members carefully observed it, they realized that this fiery-red color wasn’t pure. It was speckled with traces of gold. However, this gold was far less pronounced than the other color. It didn’t negatively affect the beautiful red.
Gu Zuo looked at it, and said with a smile: “Young Master Zhang has the dual attributes of fire and metal. Among which, the fire attribute is exuberant, and the metal attribute is thin. This kind of constitution is suited to learning fire-attribute body cultivation methods.”
Zhang Bohan showed a happy expression: “My aptitude…”
Gu Zuo said: “It’s very good.”
This aptitude was better than he imagined because the constitution was relatively pure. In fact, the thinner the land’s ambient qi, the more varied a martial artist’s attributes tended to be. Compared to the Cangyun Empire, this place’s ambient qi was far inferior. Zhang Bohan only had two attributes. Moreover, his fire attribute was still so prominent. Based on this, his aptitudes could be regarded as exceptionally good.
Zhang Bohan relaxed, and handed over the jade stone to Gu Zuo.
Zhang Huiguo revealed a trace of a smile.
His rightful grandson was the oldest, but his aptitude was recognized. It was only natural that he was pleased. This would also shut the mouths of those other family members who still weren’t too convinced of his grandson’s position.
Seeing the astonishing reaction between Zhang Bohan and the jade stone, the eyes of those apprehensive children suddenly shined.
Right away, a person impatiently stepped forward. One hand stuffed the medicinal pill into his mouth to be swallowed, and the other hand swiftly took the jade stone. His entire face was flushed with excitement.
The jade stone soon presented its color, and the reaction was indeed different from when it was held by Zhang Bohan. This immediately caused the other Zhang Family children to become even more fervent. They all walked over in haste.
Not long after, everyone’s attributes were tested.
Gu Zuo looked them over one by one, and announced their attributes.
Sure enough, dual attributes were very rare. The other Zhang Family members had at least three attributes. Those who had four or five weren’t low in number either. Fortunately, while there was some variation in their attributes, there were always one or two attributes that were relatively prominent. It didn’t reach the degree of being untrainable.
It probably had something to do with their bloodline. There was a total of ten Zhang Family children. Among them, seven were comparatively strong in the fire attribute. As for the remaining three, two were strong in the metal attribute, and one was strong in the earth and water attributes — This person had to choose one of the two attributes to study.
Generally speaking, this batch of people could all practice martial arts.
Zhang Bohan’s fingers curled into fists. He made a decision.
Since his aptitude was the best, he had to become the most powerful in the future!
At this point, Gu Zuo’s matters were completed. He turned his head, and sought out Tianheng with a face looking for approval.
Tianheng raised an eyebrow, and smiled. He reached out to pinch his cheek: “Ah Zuo did well.” Following this, he spoke directly to the Zhang Family members, “I will give you guys three types of body cultivation methods aligned to metal, fire, and earth.”
Zhang Bohan firmly remembered every word that Tianheng said. At this moment, he couldn’t help asking: “Body cultivation methods and martial skills…”
Gu Zuo explained on his big brother’s behalf: “Body cultivation methods contain inner cultivation methods and martial skills. Since big brother is willing to teach you guys, he won’t trick you in this regard. Although practicing martial skills alone can be accomplished, without any inner cultivation methods, one’s body is incapable of producing true qi, and the martial skills won’t be too powerful.”
Speaking up to here, he deliberately paused, and stated: “Of course, practicing cultivation and developing true qi is very difficult. It requires one to spend large amounts of wealth to purchase resources to temper the body. If you guys only study martial skills, your consumption will be a little less.”
The members of the Zhang Family weren’t fools, and decided quickly.
Zhang Huiguo straightforwardly smiled and said: “Mister Gongyi is noble and righteous. My Zhang Family shall humbly accept.” His voice was aged, but it was very steady, “Since they’re going to learn, it’s only natural that they’ll learn the best. The Zhang Family has its finances. We’re willing to use up our inside information to raise true martial artists.”
Zhang Bohan also spoke in a low voice: “We aren’t afraid of suffering hardships.” Then, he spoke with great sincerity, “Even if we’re too slow-witted and can’t produce true qi, we absolutely won’t hold it against Mister Gongyi.”
Hearing the words of the two Zhang Family leaders, although Gu Zuo knew that the other party was a little cunning, he was still pleased by the respectful way they talked to his big brother. The current Gu Zuo was totally unlike that helpless teenager in the past. After being taught by his big brother for so long on the Central Continent, he had experienced so much. While he wouldn’t say that he had a superior or condescending mentality, he also had a trace of “willfulness” when it came to his techniques and abilities. The Zhang Family praised Tianheng, and treated him with great esteem. Gu Zuo felt a sense of resonance with them. Regardless of whether their thoughts were true or false, he was willing to treat them a bit better.
As a result, Gu Zuo said: “Rest assured. I will give you guys some medicinal pills to help you practice martial arts.”
Tianheng pondered for a moment, and saw through Gu Zuo’s way of thinking. Bemused, he felt his mood becoming cheerful: “Zhang Family Head, since Ah Zuo is willing to take action, your Zhang Family’s children will be able to smoothly tread upon the path of martial arts.”
When Zhang Huiguo, Zhang Bohan, and the others heard this, they became even more ecstatic.
Following this, Tianheng disappeared upstairs. In a flash, he returned with three volumes: “These three martial skills will be handed over to you.”
Zhang Huiguo hastily reached out. His fingertips quivered somewhat as he received them. After taking a deep breath, he opened them. In the volumes were many diagrams and figures. It looked quite peculiar, but no matter the quality of the material or the sensation evoked from those movements, it made him realize that these volumes weren’t counterfeit articles.
Tianheng continued: “As for the inner cultivation methods, I will impart mnemonic chants. You all will decipher them on your own. If you don’t understand, then come and ask later.”
Then, he recited three mnemonic chants, and told those Zhang Family children to repeat them from memory.
It had to be said that, when making the selection, the Zhang Family had already chosen younger generations with outstanding comprehensive qualities in all aspects. The mnemonic chants weren’t long. After Tianheng recited them twice, everyone memorized the one that was suitable for them. This left Gu Zuo very satisfied — He knew that the reason why his big brother used dictation was to pass along certain linguistic cadences during the recitation, which would induce a reaction from those Zhang Family members. However, this didn’t mean that he was willing to let his big brother repeat the chants over and over again. Two times was quite good.
The Zhang Family members obtained mnemonic chants and martial skills, and they wanted to study them right then and there.
However, Tianheng said: “In addition, there’s a matter that I want to discuss with the Zhang Family Head. Why don’t you have the others go into seclusion to decipher the mnemonic chants. After the matter is discussed, I can provide them pointers.”
Zhang Huiguo was mature and experienced. He immediately recalled the matter of “medicine refinement” that Tianheng previously mentioned, and his heart had a hunch. He promptly waved his hand: “Apart from Bohan, everyone else will go to the Fine Arts Building to study the mnemonic chants first.”
The other Zhang Family younger generations were still caught up in the excitement. Even though they knew that there was a matter of importance, they weren’t able to hold back their desires to go and learn martial arts. They all quickly departed.
Meanwhile, Zhang Bohan stayed behind. He suppressed similar thoughts about wanting to study the mnemonic chants, and earnestly waited for Tianheng’s next words.
This kind of display naturally left Zhang Huiguo very pleased.
Tianheng opened his mouth: “Would your Zhang Family be interested in a business transaction?”
T/N: In Chapter 95, the five elemental attributes were assigned different colors during the jade stone testing, where white referred to metal and yellow referred to earth. The discrepancy may be due to the author forgetting, or simply a quirk of this particular testing stone.
Also, just a heads up that trigger warnings have been added to the novel summary page and Chapter 1.
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