My Daoist Life - 25
I jumped in fright, I could clearly feel his gaze on me.
I hurriedly withdrew my gaze, that person was seemingly very surprised and glanced at me, then recovered his gaze.
This person is very special, I could feel that the aura upon his body was similar to that on mine.
As soon as these people arrived, the CDC people seemed to have suddenly arrived at a consensus. The blockade was very quickly broken. Most of the army and police had been withdrawn, and the doctors of the CDC were also evacuated. However, that delegation from the cultural relics bureau stayed in the village. Moreover, there were still some armed forces and police left behind.
“Huang Jingyang, Huang Jingyang.” Just after lunch, I heard Huang Shulang shouting outside.
“What is it?” I went out.
“Those people have gone to Ba Jiao Mountain, must be to excavate treasures, you haven’t gone to take a look? A lot of people in our village have gone.” I didn’t know why Huang Shulang told me this news, but I was indeed very interested in this news.
I put two baskets atop Old Yellow, and then striking it on the back, walked out with a small basket in my hands.
“Huang Jingyang, where are you going?” Teacher Lin asked as she chased out after me.
“I am going to the mountains to collect firewood. The firewood in the house is being burnt away very quickly.” I was not making up excuses. There was indeed a deficiency of firewood in the house. Our firewood stove is not an economical stove. To prepare one meal, a lot of firewood had to be burnt. So we must often go like this to the mountains to collect firewood.
“I’ll go with you.” Teacher Lin thought that walking into the mountains was a very interesting thing.
“The mountain interiors are very difficult to walk, it would be better if you did not go.” This time, I wanted to watch on with the crowd, it would naturally be a bit inconvenient with Teacher Lin.
“I haven’t been to the mountain interiors yet. You need to take me along.” I really couldn’t refuse Teacher Lin’s request.
Black Bean also ended up following behind. At this time, there was a situation of winds calling and cranes sighing in the village. Even Black Bean and Old Yellow remained quiet. Obviously they could feel the uneasy atmosphere in the village.
[TLNote: Idiom: “Winds calling and cranes sighing”, Meaning “Feeling jumpy/Jittery/Panicky”]
Huang Shulang’s house burnt coal, so he didn’t need to go to the mountains to pick up firewood like me. Seeing Teacher Lin following behind me, Huang Shulang found it somewhat hard to believe what he was seeing.
“Teacher Lin is also going?” Huang Shulang frowned.
“Why? Do you have any problem with Teacher Lin going?” Teacher Lin said smilingly. Obviously she knew that we were using the picking up firewood as an excuse, or perhaps she had already heard my conversation with Huang Shulang earlier.
“I don’t, I don’t. Here in the mountain interiors, the trees are lush and the road is not so easy.” Having only arrived at the foot of the Ba Jiao mountain, one could already see, Ba Jiao Village’s Huang Clan’s graves. Several new graves had wreaths suspended on them, and when looking for afar, it looked very conspicuous.
“Huang Shulang, look there’s someone behind you!” Seeing Huang Shulang’s nervous look, I rolled my eyes, and shouted out suddenly.
Huang Shulang feet immediately went weak, as he slumped down on to the ground: “What is behind me?”
Huang Shulang barely stopped before crying. However, very quickly understood that I was just toying with him, so very discontendedly said: “Don’t try to scare people in the mountains, dead people are sca-scary you know?” [TLNote: Imagine him stuttering and repeating sentences]
“You are so cowardly, and yet dare to go to Ba Jiao Mountain? Just in case you see something, don’t go pissing your pants.” I laughed.
Teacher Lin pursed her lips, but her face was full of smiles.
After I said so much, Huang Shulang couldn’t remain unconcerned, moreover, since Teacher Lin was also here, Huang Shulang wasn’t willing to even think of losing to me: “Who is afraid. I just wasn’t ready a moment ago. You come again, I definitely won’t be afraid.”
“Eight Grannies, you need not come out in the daytime to scare people. Huang Shulang won’t be afraid of you.
Huang Shulang didn’t believe me, but still his whole body was trembling: “Huang Jingyang, I know that you are lying. I am not afraid!”
“You are not afraid, then why are you shaking?” I said laughing.
“Huang Jingyang, don’t scare people.” Teacher Lin’s voice also trembled somewhat.
I scratched my head, and honestly took the lead as we walked into the mountain. Huang Shulang being the cowardliest, didn’t dare walk in the front, but was also afraid to stay in the back, I could only walk in the front, with Teacher Lin following behind me, Huang Shulang walking behind her, and finally in the last was my family’s Old Yellow. Black Bean wasn’t as simple as Old Yellow. Just now he was walking in the front, and suddenly, he ran into a dense thicket to chase after some sparrows. From time to time, common sparrows would fly out of the thickets after being chased out by Black Bean.
“Huang Jingyang, can you make your dog not jump around in the thickets?” Huang Shulang was frightened several times, and had somewhat begun imagining every tree or bush as a threat.
“I have no control over this.” I said laughing.
While I was walking, I was also picking up things in the mountains, like dried up branches and pinecones. After all, at least in name I had come over to collect firewood. Even Black Bean would also, from time to time, come over with a pine cone in his mouth and put it in the bamboo basket.
Huang Shulang, who had originally wanted to sit on the ground and pause to take a breath, upon seeing Teacher Lin also searching everywhere for firewood, was also forced to stand up, left with no choice but to look everywhere for it.
“Nowadays, it is only your house in the village which is still burning firewood for fuel. Burning firewood is not clean, as it also makes ash and smoke. You should see my house, we burn coal for power, and our house remains much cleaner.” Huang Shulang was very much criticizing my house’s firewood burning.
“Huang Shulang, did you forget that your entire family had once almost died of coal gas poisoning, eh?” I asked. Huang Shulang’s family, in one winter, had the windows of their house sealed shut tightly. The entire family was poisoned by the coal fumes. Fortunately, the village people discovered it, and by breaking open the windows, had the people escorted to the hospital. The entire family was on the verge of being wiped out. Fortunately, it was daytime, if it had been night, then I am afraid we would only have found corpses.
Huang Shulang wasn’t too happy with me bringing up old issues, but he also couldn’t find the words to refute what I had said.
Now in the village, very few people were burning firewood, so the amount of firewood in the mountains was bountiful. In a short amount of time and through only casual labour, we had already filled up all the baskets we had brought.
“Huang Jingyang, now we should return right? It’s already been half-day of helping you pick up firewood.” Huang Shulang impatiently said.
Teacher Lin asked immediately: “You still need to go somewhere?”
“Teacher Lin, the archaeology team that has come to our village, is studying relics over there. Let’s go over and take a look.” Huang Shulang said while pointing at the highest peak on Ba Jiao mountain.
It was on the highest mountain peak of Ba Jiao mountain that I had picked up the Bronze Medal. The villagers had also brought home treasured objects from that place..
“Huang Shulang, did your family return the treasured object that you had brought back?” I was somewhat skeptical of whether the people in the village had returned the things that they had picked up from the Ba Jiao Mountain or not, and even if they had returned them, they might also have played some sort of a trick.
“I returned it, I definitely did. If we hadn’t returned it, then how come not even a single issue has arisen in our family?” Huang Shulang said promptly.
I could naturally tell that Huang Shulang wasn’t telling the truth, because I could see somewhat dodgy expression in his eyes.
“You are lying. Your father must have definitely hid those objects somewhere. Must be preparing for digging them back again at some time. I urge you, it would in your best interests to dissuade your father from having any thoughts on those things, otherwise you will definitely suffer a mishap.” I knew that Huang Shulang’s family wouldn’t believe me, but now that I had warned them, if they still did not listen, then it would at least be their business. Later, I will also not go take care of their family.
Teacher Lin was a city person, she had never walked on a road like that Ba Jiao Mountain road. In fact, this so called mountain road, was fundamentally not a road, rather it was a pathway cut by the people who went to the mountains to chop out firewood. With thorns and thistles at every step, requiring quite a bit of experience to avoid hardship. Teacher Lin couldn’t walk even a single step, I could only walk with her following behind. Huang Shulang came across some other children of the village, and they abandoned me and Teacher Lin, to quickly run towards Ba Jiao mountain’s tallest peak.
“What are all you children doing here?” I could hear a voice of an adult coming from a distance. Presumably, it must be directed towards Huang Shulang and his group.
“We, we came to the mountain to p-pick up firewood.” The one who spoke was Ma Jindong.
Huang Shulang immediately spoke with boldness and conviction: “Right! We have come here to gather firewood. This mountain is our Ba Jiao Village’s mountain. Why can you all come, but we can’t come?”
“Hey! Fatty, what’s your name? What school are you from? Looks like I’ll have to go have a good talk with your teachers. We are the province’s Cultural Heritage Bureau Archaeology team. We are here to conduct archaeological activities, you are here to steal historical relics? That is a crime punishable by long jail term.” That adult said with a smile.
Huang Shulang immediately panicked: “We, we are here to pick up firewood, and not to dig or steal historical relics.”
“At present this area has already been sealed off by us of the Cultural Heritage Bureau, and no one is allowed to come here. All you children go back quickly. It is not safe here. Liu Jinan, get something to eat for these children, and quickly dispatch them off the mountain.” That man who had spoken in the very beginning, said in a commanding tone.
Huang Shulang said pleased with himself: “You all see, how fierce I am. I opened my mouth, and they could only comply and give us things to eat.”
That young man named Liu Jinan of the archaeological team, ran into the tent quickly, brought out a bag of snacks, and put them into Huang Shulang’s grubby hands: “These are for you all to eat. Eat and then quickly leave. This place is not some place that you should come.”
Huang Shulang grabbed onto it and said: “This is what I obtained, I should eat a bit more.”