Chapter 124: The Rustling Wind Rises and the Remote Array Is Made
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
In reality, in the market, there always existed poorer quality products passing off as quality ones, especially those herbs in high demand. A layman without the relevant knowledge and experience would not be able to distinguish them, resulting in a higher likelihood of being tricked. Take ginseng, for example; the most famous ginseng was the northeastern ginseng. In the North East, three treasures existed: ginseng, pilose antler and mink. These were written into students’ textbooks and have been renowned all over. The more famous an item was, the more likely there would be replicas and fakes. An example would be distilled spirit. The country’s most famous would be Mao Tai and Wuliangye, and these were the brands that had the most fakes on the market. Similarly, there were quite a number of suppliers in the market who claimed that their ginsengs were of the northeastern variety. But in reality, 90% of them were fakes.
“How much did you spend for these two ginsengs?”
“I didn’t spend any money; it was a gift from my friend,” Wang Mingbao answered.
“Oh, that’s good.”
“The critical thing is that he has a lot of them!” Wang Mingbao’s next sentence alarmed Wang Yao.
“Haha, has he never thought of this? How is it possible for so much wild ginseng to appear in Lianshan County at one time? The northeastern ginseng’s quantity is very small. With the prevalence of people taking advantage of its rarity and digging it up, the ginseng has become fewer in supply. It has become a precious rarity in the marketplace. If it appeared, it would be snatched up immediately. Your friend was either cheated by someone or is prepared to cheat others.”
“I’ll have to ask him,” Wang Mingbao listened to him and said.
“This type of ginseng will cause adverse effects to the body when taken. If taken in small quantities, it’s not so bad.”
Having left Wang Mingbao’s place, Wang Yao headed to Li Maoshuang’s. Since the earlier incident, their relationship had developed from a simple supplier-customer relationship to a friendship. Li Maoshuang smiled happily in greeting as soon as he saw Wang Yao’s car enter.
“What a rare visitor. I just made good tea; come taste it.”
The tea was indeed of good quality. It was Huangshan Maojian. Li Maoshuang’s table had a new and exquisite tea set. The last time Wang Yao came, he did not recall seeing it.
“Here, have a taste. How is it?”
The tea color was a clear light green, and the tea was delicately fragrant and refreshing.
“Good tea!” Wang Yao remarked after tasting it.
“Here, take some home.” Li Maoshuang took out two containers and passed them to Wang Yao.
“How can I?”
“Why not? Don’t go back for lunch this afternoon either. I’ll treat you!”
“No, let me.” Wang Yao heard him and had a flash of inspiration. “Let me ask a few friends as well.”
He had made a few friends in the last couple of months. Upon reflection, it seemed that not even once, had he attempted to invite them for a gathering. Hence, he made a few phone calls, and the other parties were quick to accept his invitation. Wang Yao did not invite many, only three of them: Wang Mingbao, Tian Yuantu, and Li Maoshuang. The location was to be at Shenghua Hotel.
“All set. Today, it will be my treat,” Wang Yao smiled and said to Li Maoshuang.
“Okay, your treat.” Li Maoshuang did not argue. He regarded Wang Yao as his friend and had withdrawn his usual businessman shrewdness. This displayed his sincerity and frankness, which made Wang Yao very comfortable.
He stayed at Li Maoshuang’s place for a bit and the time came close to lunch. Thus, the two of them headed to the hotel together where a private room was booked. Not long after getting seated, Wang Mingbao arrived, and Wang Yao introduced them both. A few minutes later, Tian Yuantu arrived.
“Chairman Tian?!” Upon seeing this person, both Li Maoshuang and Wang Mingbao were surprised.
Tian Yuantu was a reputable person in Lianshan County. Although not a household name, to businessmen like Wang Mingbao and Li Maoshuang, they were familiar with his matters. They could never have guessed that Wang Yao’s third invited person was him. A person of such repute was someone they could never hope to meet on their own.
“Don’t call me chairman. From today on, we are all friends,” Tian Yuantu smiled and remarked.
Having ordered dishes with the waiter, the dishes started to arrive in quick succession, along with some liquor.
The four of them chatted cheerfully and humorously. The table had a harmonious atmosphere.
“I suggest that we do more gatherings like this in future,” Li Maoshuang smiled and commented.
“I am fine with that,” Wang Mingbao said.
“Sure.” Tian Yuantu smiled. This time, he had come because he was giving face to Wang Yao.
“Sure,” Wang Yao heard and smilingly agreed.
During the lunch, Wang Mingbao, Tian Yuantu, and Li Maoshuang swapped contact information.
After the lunch ended, Tian Yuantu gave Wang Yao a lift back to the village. Once he was up on the hill, Wang Yao made a cup of tea in order to relieve the effects of the liquor. He suddenly thought of the stalks of tea he had planted last year and exited the cottage. The tea plants had grown well; the leaves were a deep green, and there were new shoots sprouting due to the proximity of the spring season. The excellent growth was indubitably due to the ancient spring that was watered on them.
All this while, he had received multiple gifts from people like Tian Yuantu, He Qisheng and he had no suitable means of returning the favor. Getting something from the supermarket was obviously unsuitable for people of their stature. He had plenty of herbs in his herbal field, which could be made into decoctions. However, giving medicine as gifts was inauspicious. Having pondered on the matter, he decided tea was suitable. He could give his own cultivated tea to a few people as gifts, and such a gift appropriately showed his kind intentions.
However, making handmade tea was a technical type of work, and Wang Yao had no foundations for it. Hence, he started by buying some books online about the process of handmade tea. He read and tried to learn from them. In Lianshan County’s southeastern region by the river, there were a few villages that planted tea. In those places, many of them processed their own tea; Wang Yao was prepared to find time to visit the area and learn onsite.
With this matter decided, he went to the other side of Nanshan hill. The array required a few more rocks to improve its efficacy.
After another of his meridians became unblocked, he felt more strength in his legs. As he brisk-walked on the hill path, his strides were swift, and when he moved the rocks, it became easier than before. The unblocked meridian had increased his body’s overall strength, and his constitution had also changed. His inner Qi had become substantial.
This time, he merely took an afternoon to move a rock that faced the back of the foot of the hill to the location of the array, and further moved the rock to the peak. Seeing that the sky had darkened, he did not continue to move it up.
In the afternoon of the next day, just after he had completed his chores, he saw two people making their way up the hill—a man and a child. It was Zhou Xiong and his son. Wang Yao was surprised to see them. As with the other visitors to the hill, Zhou Xiong had brought gifts.
“The next time you come, don’t bring anything.”
“Hello, Sir,” Zhou Xiong’s son smiled and greeted him. It could be because he had not had physical activity for some time, but the path up the hill had left his breath quite rapid, and his face was rosy.
“Okay, come into the cottage and rest.”
Once inside the cottage, Wang Yao made Zhou Xiong a cup of tea and poured Zhou Wukang a cup of water. It was the ancient spring.
“This water tastes good!” Zhou Wukang drank a few gulps and commented.
“Drink more then.” Wang Yao heard him and smiled.
Over the period of interaction with him, Wang Yao was very fond of this child. He was sensible, strong-willed and stronger than other kids his age. This could be due to the child’s experience with the illness. After they’ve rested a while, Wang Yao took the child’s pulse.
There were some changes in the child’s body. Previously the vigor and life that took much effort to restore seemed to have diminished.
Is it due to his weak constitution? Is recovering on his own not possible?
“He seems to have recovered well. I will make another decoction; you can come then to get it,” having completed the examination, Wang Yao told Zhou Xiong.
Subsequently, Wang Yao showed them around the hill and wanted to ask them to stay for a meal, but they declined his invitation and left the village around noontime.
“I’ll need to make the Regather soup.”
Having seen off the father and son, Wang Yao called Li Maoshuang and asked him to prepare the herbs that he required.
In the afternoon, he placed the last two rocks in their specified locations in the array. When the last rock was placed, there was no premonition. A sudden gust of wind blew, and the tree leaves rustled noisily. In a flash, the wind disappeared.
In the afternoon, Tian Yuantu dropped by and brought with him a set of medical records. It was for the patient he told Wang Yao about before. The other party was very careful and had removed the name of the patient from the records.
“That’s all?” Wang Yao looked at the records and laboratory tests. It was evident that the information was limited.
“That’s all.” Tian Yuantu felt a little awkward, as the other party had furnished very little information.
“I’ll take a look,” Wang Yao smiled and said. “By the way, I have something to ask you.”
“What is it? Go ahead.”
“Do you know of anyone who knows how to process tea leaves by hand?
“Handmade tea? Why do you suddenly ask about this?” Tian Yuantu heard him, and his curiosity was piqued. In Lianshan County, such people were in short supply.
“Outside, I have planted some stalks of tree plants that can be picked. I would like to make my own tea so that we can try it fresh.” Wang Yao pointed to the tea plants outside the window.
“I’ll have to check on this. There are a number of tea growers by the river; however many have resorted to using machines to process their tea. Those who hand process their tea are few and far between.”
“I will have to trouble you to help check. When I have time, I’ll go to the ones by the river to take a look,” Wang Yao said.
“No problem. This is a small matter.” Tian Yuantu said with a smile.
He stayed at Wang Yao’s place for a while and then left.
Eh? When Tian Yuantu reached the foot of the hill, he stopped and turned to look up the hill.
“Strange, why do I feel a little weird? Is this an illusion?”
When he was up on the hill, he felt comfortable, the air was fresh, and his breathing was smooth. There was a breeze that constantly blew in an unhurried manner. Once he got down the hill, though, the feeling vanished, and he felt that the breeze was a little cool.
“Don’t tell me it’s due to the trees?” He felt slightly curious. In any case, he did not overthink it.