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Book 6 Chapter 14 - Humanity, Some Have It, Some Don’

Immortal Devil Transformation
     Under the wind and rain, the lights within the study of Swallow Descent Town Supervisor He Zijing’s small courtyard were always lit.

    Ever since he was roused awake by Lin Xi, He Zijing didn’t go back to sleep. After locking the doors and refusing to see Lin Xi, orders were secretly sent out from his small courtyard one after another.

    Most individuals who had the ability to serve as Yunqin’s Town Supervisors were not mediocre. Moreover, unlike cultivators like Lin Xi who came out of an academy, these officials who slowly crawled their way up from the bottom, their methods towards bureaucracy and sense of danger would always be sharper.

    Even Lian Zhanshan had a bit of sensitivity towards the way the wind blew, just that he incorrectly judged the direction.

    In He Zijing’s opinion, Lin Xi’s background was worth him feeling apprehensive over, perhaps he was Li Xiping’s own student, or the student of some even higher level official at the provincial level. However, Lin Xi’s way of carrying himself as an official, in his eyes, really was a bit too childish.

    Unable to even separate who are whose people, this is the most childish thing.

    He, He Zijing, was precisely someone Xu Ningshen brought out of the border army, that was why Xu Chengfeng found it so convenient to conduct matters in Swallow Descent Town during all these years, he himself naturally obtaining many invisible benefits from this.

    This time, even though the Three Towns Battalion Commander Xu Ningshen clearly assumed an attitude of drawing a dividing line between himself and Xu Chengfeng, nor was there any proof stating that he was previously aware of Silver Hook Lane’s situation, Xu Chengfeng was still his son in the end. This case was extremely large, but despite Jiang Rui, this Imperial Censor’s denouncing, Xu Ningshen was still only penalized for a year of salary, dropping one rank.

    Moreover, he still sat on the position of the Three Towns Battalion Commander, no one immediately transferred over to replace him.

    He Zijing naturally understood that when waters were too deep and too muddy, it was best to not wade in it. He wasn’t aware of Xu Chengfeng and the others’ way of doing things either, but he understood extremely clearly that there were some wealthy individuals who, for the sake of satisfying some indulgences they couldn’t satisfy elsewhere, didn’t cherish the silver they had. As such, where did Silver Hook Lane’s silvers flow to?

    Xu Ningshen temporarily received this type of punishment, but he understood that most of these silvers most likely flowed upwards.

    Attracting customers, investigating information, training students, treating visitors and offerings, fostering some hidden powers, even down to providing some imperial bodyguards with some special weapons and armors out in the open, all of this needed large amounts of silver… wealth, for those higher up, had even more uses.

    …

    In He Zijing’s opinion, Lin Xi’s way of conduct was too childish, he was unaware that he was someone who was under Xu Ningshen, this large tree. However, in this Deereast City, many people understood this extremely clearly.

    If he wanted to get off Xu Ningshen and the military’s ship, even if he chose to drown himself, others definitely wouldn’t believe that he left Xu Ningshen’s ship.

    That was why it was unreasonable, how could he possibly put on that raincoat, go with Lin Xi into the rainy night, walk up to that dam?

    However, since Lin Xi came, he had to make corresponding actions.

    He had to prepare well. What if that river dam really did collapse like Lin Xi said? What was he supposed to do? Meanwhile, the river dam that had already experienced the test of several decades, what if there were absolutely no issues? What was he supposed to do then?

    Lin Xi’s thoughts were extremely simple. He felt like this world still had many good people, and most people were much simpler and cleaner than the people of his previous world, not as cold and detached either. That was why his attitude was just like meeting friendly neighbors, if he had the ability, he would obviously help out. However, for He Zijing, this was precisely a chance to deal with Lin Xi.

    Right now, the one who sat in front of He Zijing was Swallow Descent Town’s Land Manager, Kuang Xiuxian.

    Because of the favorable weather for crops in Swallow Descent Town these past few years, the harvests being excellent, Kuang Xiuxian’s achievements were also extremely outstanding, having quite the hopes of being promoted within a year or two. That was why he was content and easy-going, his body round, the new official uniform that was sent out already extremely tight around his body, making him look just like an inflated cloth bag.

    Right now, he adjusted the oil lamp in front of He Zijing to curry favor, adjusting the flame so that it was a bit brighter. This official whose face was covered in red light, as if oil was even going to drip out from his face, maintained the most respectful attitude towards He Zijing possible while saying in disdain, “What does that Lin Xi understand? I already checked that dam many times, the entire thing is made from clay mixed with sticky rice, hay, sand, stones, and other stuff to make the sturdiest structure, even thicker than normal border pass walls. Even if soldiers were to try and dig a hole out of it, they might not necessarily even be able to…”

    A burst of footsteps suddenly sounded while he was still speaking. A soldier dressed in bright copper plate armor entered this study while dripping wet, giving He Zijing a respectful bow.

    “Sir Shang?”

    Kuang Xiuxian was stunned. This soldier was precisely the military officer Shang Yin who was in charge of Town Supervisor Manor’s garrisoned troops.

    Shang Yin nodded towards him, but didn’t stop and said, “Sir He, Lin XI has already ordered the people behind the dam to evacuate.”

    “Excellent.” He Zijing nodded in admiration, “All of you, continue to wait, have someone report back once every hour.”

    “This subordinate will listen to orders.”

    Shang Yin bowed, turning around and quickly walking out.

    Kuang Xiuxian was stunned, layers after layer of cold sweat covering his back.

    Only now did he understand. Turns out He Zijing had long sent out all of the garrisoned troops, having all of them wait on a hill not too far from the river dam.

    If the dam truly did show some changes, all of the soldiers would immediately join the support, so it couldn’t be said that Swallow Descent Town’s officials didn’t really do anything, not taking any action.

    This Town Supervisor’s schemes and carefulness revealed his true character, it wasn’t something he could hope to achieve.

    At the same time, this official who was as round as a ball knew that if the river dam was entirely without issues, this Town Supervisor would definitely have even more things he could do.

    …

    Dong!

    Dong!

    On East Port Town’s river dam, another stake sunk into the earth following Jiang Xiaoyi’s smash.

    His hands were still continuously trembling, most of his soul force now exhausted, his entire body also covered under the splashed mud, his hair and face as well, it was already impossible to tell that this was a tall and handsome young man.

    Not far out, many dark bodied men were shouting as they worked in the areas Chen Yangzhi designated as the weak points of the dam. These fish market people, Black Oil and Stone Rats already laid countless short stakes, moreover packing quite a few straw bags with silt up ahead.

    Right now, the river dam was densely packed, unknown just how many people there were there. Not only were there men among them, there were even many women and children without much strength, all of them using baskets to carry sand and silt, moving them to some areas, and then some men would work together to raise large stones, packing these areas more firmly.

    Perhaps it was because his perception was sharper since he was a cultivator, but Jiang Xiaoyi already felt that the trembling of the great dam decreased considerably.

    When he saw the dozens of stakes that were already added, his already somewhat weary self felt a bit more at ease. He couldn’t help but wonder how Lin Xi was doing over at Swallow Descent Town.

    Suddenly, his body trembled slightly.

    He saw a woman whose face seemed to be covered in bloody scars roll up her sleeves, dragging a large stone together with many others.

    Even though her entire body was covered in mud, even her clothes’ colors unable to be made out, even though her face seemed to be covered in bloody scars, she still gave off a type of gentle and beautiful feeling. However, what drew Jiang Xiaoyi’s attention wasn’t her beautiful appearance or her figure, but rather her unswerving determination.

    She collapsed in the mud again and again, but stood up again each time, roaring out just like the other men.

    He didn’t know why, but this scene, on this incredibly chaotic dam, in his eyes, seemed especially clear.

    “The rain has stopped a bit!”

    “The rain is going to stop soon!”

    Suddenly, someone shouted. Cheers erupted one after another, shaking the skies and moving the earth.

    Jiang Xiaoyi couldn’t help but raise his head towards the sky as well, seeing that the rain indeed became more sparse and fine, the skies already slightly bright.

    This night was already almost over, while East Port Town’s dam was still in good shape.

    …

    The sky was going to brighten soon.

    Swallow Descent Town’s dam was still fine.

    Almost all of the villagers behind Swallow Descent Town had already been evacuated, gathering on a hill in the back.

    Only Elder Gao’s family stubbornly chose to remain in his earthen walled small courtyard. Three or four groups of people came to advise him, but all of them failed.

    Under the lead of several villagers, a mud covered Lin Xi arrived before this lowland earthen wall small courtyard.

    “Elder…”

    When Lin Xi had only bowed slightly, before he could say much, the moment this white haired elder whose body was covered in rough cloth clothes saw the mud covered Lin Xi, he already knelt down, hard to hold him back, choking with emotion. “Sir Lin, your respected self rushed over here yourself in exhaustion, this old one truly doesn’t wish to cause you any trouble. However, it’s not that I don’t want to move, but rather that I cannot.”

    Lin Xi stared blankly for a moment, and then he took a step forward, supporting this elder and saying with a gentle voice, “Elder, what trouble do you have? There is no harm in speaking your thoughts.”

    “My son already fell ill and left this world, my Gao Family only has this lonely elder and my weak daughter-in-law left, as well as a less than four year old grandson. All of the farm work depends on two cows. Now, one of them is close to labor, if we cannot take care of it, if something unexpected happens, even if we avoid this flood, we still cannot continue living.” The elder said with sorrow, “Moreover, we depend on these two cows for survival, so these two cows are already not only like old friends, they are also what we depend on. How can we abandon them at this time?”

    “Turns out it was just this.” Lin Xi smiled, and then said, “There is a cow cart, today, we can let that cow of yours ride in it. We’ll find some people, bring them to a place of higher elevation.”

    The elder was stunned.

    With a creak sound, the cow pen’s door in the distance opened. A woman staggered along with a child, kneeling down from far away.

    Lin Xi smiled as he raised his head towards the sky.

    The rain was about to stop, a bit of light already visible from the east.

    His smile was just as brilliant as this light.

    His mood was light and carefree.

    When this family left with him, everyone here already evacuated. Even if the river dam burst, there wouldn’t be too many casualties.

    For a cow to sit in a bull cart, this was a bit laughable even for him… However, for them to be unable to leave because of these two cows, stuck in a financial dilemma, out of gratitude towards these two cows who allowed them to continue living, it still made him further sense the humanity Vice Principal Xia spoke of.

    …

    The rain completely stopped.

    The sky already brightened.

    On another hill behind this Swallow Descent Town’s dam, more than two hundred soldiers withdrew into the forest according to Shang Yin’s instructions so that Lin Xi couldn’t see them.

    Shang Yin stood next to a tree. He looked at the other hill, many people were currently ascending a hill with a cow cart behind them that was covered in hay, a cow resting on it.

    When they saw the bull that was pulling it, as well as Lin Xi who lent a helping hand from time to time, this Swallow Descent Town military official also gave the brightening sky and distant great dam a look. Immediately afterwards, a hint of indescribable smile of mockery appeared.

    On East Port Town’s dam.

    Because Chen Yangzhi was extremely sure that even if the rain stopped, the dam still wouldn’t be safe, people were still rushing over like ants. Only some people who were truly just too exhausted were swapped out, temporarily resting on the high ground.

    There were quite a few townsmen who brought out large pots, cooking up one batch of spicy noodles and hot congee after another.

    Jiang Xiaoyi also already stopped.

    Zou Yishi at his side was also lying on the ground, not moving.

    He washed his face with the river water. Under the morning light, he saw that the scar covered woman still continued to run about without rest.

    Suddenly, this woman also noticed Jiang Xiaoyi was looking at her, exchanging a look with him from the distance.

    A bashful expression immediately appeared on this woman’s face, but then she quickly lowered her head, silently carrying a large sack of sand and stones on her back as she walked towards the dam.

    Jiang Xiaoyi opened his mouth slightly. For some unknown reason, his chest began to feel a bit suffocated.

    …

    In East Port Town, because most of the villagers hurried to the dam, under the morning light, most of the shops didn’t open, this East Port Town seeming unprecedentedly beautiful and peaceful.

    A amiable faced fat merchant carried a basket, walking out of the door.

    He walked through several alleys, but didn’t find a single noodle shop that was opened, thus unable to immediately eat a bowl of chili oil noodles with chinese cabbage and meat slices. This made this fat merchant couldn’t help but mutter a bit in complaint.

    However, a signboard-like amiable smile continued to hang from his face.

    He didn’t continue to look for noddle shops, instead heading towards East Port Town’s Warden Office.

    When he reached the Warden Office’s high walls, sensing the emptiness and peacefulness inside, his face instead revealed an even more satisfied expression. He continued walking, but the basket in his hands was flung out, easily making its way over the tall wall in a strange manner, flying into the distance, into a wormwood covered roof.

    He continued forward, disappearing into an unmanned alley up ahead.

    No one noticed the basket he flung out, it calmly rested on the roof of a prison cell.

    The sunlight became even brighter. This basket slowly released clear smoke, and then it became a fire, burning more and more fiercely.