Chapter 290: Division Altar.
‘Mr. Xiao Luo is very good at selling ducks!’
Ji Siying wrote down another one in her notebook. Since she came to Xiao Luo, her notebook had become thick with notes about Xiao Luo. It was full of Xiao Lou’s daily life. She never let pass even the smallest details, such as what kind of food Xiao Luo liked to eat or what kind of show he liked to watch.
She wrote every single one of them down, waiting for a good opportunity to analyze them and see if she could find any clues from these daily behaviors.
If Xiao Luo knew that she had been recording these, he would’ve been very speechless.
With a few loud firecrackers ringing in the morning, the New Year was coming.
On this day of the Little New Year¹, the most important activity of the Luo people was to go to the altar of the public memorial service to kill chickens and set off incense and firecrackers. The scene was very lively.
Shi Gong was one of the old ancestors of Luo Village and was also the god of Luo Village at that time. Shi Gong Tan was the temple built by the Luo Village in memory of him. It was on the same level as Xiao ancestral temple or even higher.
According to legend, the division has great sacred power, painting sacred symbols; making sacred water, and granting invulnerability. There had been wars with people getting injured. After drinking the sacred water, the Shi clan’s men attained great strengths. They were brave and good at fighting, they became impenetrable to weapons. They could frighten the enemy to pieces, ran around amok and defended Luo Village’s land.
Until now, the master’s skill of painting sacred symbols and making sacred water had also been handed down. The successor was an old man named Xiao Quanren. He would be invited to attend all the white affairs and happy events in Luo Village. He was now the god of Luo Village. One time, when someone ate fish, the fishbone got stuck in his throat, Xiao Quanren was invited and gave the man a drink of the sacred water, the fishbone that was stuck in his throat was then swallowed.
This was not an individual case, but there were many cases that could not be explained by science up to now, and could only be explained by teachers and public figures.
It was precisely because of this “Spirit” of the martial arts world that its status in Luo Village people’s mind was respected.
As for the sacred water, it was placed in the innermost part of the altar of the master. It was held in a huge wooden barrel, which was locked. Xiao Quanren, the old man, was in charge of the key. The sacred water started out as ordinary mountain stream water, ashes and chicken blood were added to it, then it would need to be sealed for 7749 days for it to become sacred water.
The sacred water was clear and had a refreshing fragrance. Every other month, on the 15th, an altar would be held to offer sacrifices. Luo Village people would come to drink the sacred water and pray that they would live a long life.
“When will you start drinking sacred water?”
Ji Siying learned these from Xiao Luo’s mouth, she yearned and was curious about the sacred water.
Xiao Luo put down the cup, looked up and gave her a pondering look, “Do you want to drink?”
“Yes, it should be an old tradition.”
Ji Siying nodded and said, “Doesn’t Mr. Xiao Luo want to drink?”
Xiao Luo smiled, “I have drunk too much since I was a child. In fact, it doesn’t have any special taste, it’s just like clear water. However, if you want to drink it, I will take you to see it tonight. Maybe you can rub a mouthful of porridge to drink.”
In any case, there was nothing to do at home. It was better to take the liaison officer to familiarize herself with the customs of Luo Village.
Ji Siying now yearned for the very sacred water. She was thinking, ‘Could it be that Xiao Luo grew up drinking sacred water, that his strength is so strong?’
At dinner time, grandma told Xiao Luo that Aunt Tao’s son, Xiao Ping, had come back, but she also brought back bad news. Xiao Ping and his wife lost their money in the clothing business.
Not only did he lose 100,000 yuan, but he also owed 200,000 yuan in loans. Originally, Aunt Tao Xiu’s family was a low-income family. Her income came entirely from the fact that Aunt Tao Xiu and her husband Xiao Youfu smashed cement and bricks to build a house for people. Xiao Ping still had three children. The family was already burdened with a heavy weight. The failure in business undoubtedly added to the family’s misery.
“Ping’er’s family has just gone to Xiao Qiu’s house.” Grandma said.
“What are they doing at his house?” Asked Xiao Luo.
Grandma sighed, “The family’s savings are only 80,000 yuan. If the 200,000 yuan is not paid off immediately, it will be 300,000 yuan or 400,000 yuan in a few days.”
“Isn’t it illegal to raise prices when lending money?” Ji Siying said, while eating.
Xiao Luo replied, “It’s illegal, but we are in a remote place, and the government’s influence here is relatively weak in management. This is where the business of high-profit loans grows.”
Ji SiYing understandingly nodded, she continued to eat.
Grandpa spoke at this moment and said to Xiao Luo, “Xiao Luo, our family is close to your aunt Tao Xiu’s family. I andPing’er’s father are brothers. Aunt Tao Xiu also takes care of your grandmother and me. If you have the ability, please help their family.”
“Well, I know, Grandpa.” Xiao Luo answered with a smile.
At eight o’clock in the evening, the altar was very lively, beating gongs and drums, setting off firecrackers, lighting incense and candles, bowing down and kowtowing. Many young people who had come back from earning money from other places returned here, boasting horn and conch, and a bonfire was set up at the gate of the altar.
The appearance of Xiao Luo and Ji Siying immediately attracted everyone’s attention.
“Xiao Luo, you and your girlfriend also came!”
“Take your girlfriend and worship the ‘teacher’ (God of Luo Village) together, you will become our daughter-in-law in Luo village.”
With enthusiasm, they said.
“Un.” Xiao Luo answered with a smile.
Under the candlelight, Ji Siying’s cheeks reddened with a kind of attractive glow, she looked curiously at the sight of the altar. The building was very old, two round pillars were full of the breath of vicissitudes of life and years. There was some kind of moving melody of drums. Xiao Quanren, the old man, was holding a burning paper on the vanity with scribbles murmuring something.
This was an ancient tradition and ceremony, it made him look as if he was back in an ancient time!
Of course, she didn’t know that many young Luo village men were looking at her. Her beauty made them extremely envious of Xiao Luo, especially Xiao Qiu. Seeing this woman who was like the heroine of a TV series, comparing the ugly woman Li Honglian with deformed facial features in his home, his psychology had a great gap, which felt very unpleasant.
A young man with a round face came up and gave Xiao Luo a gentle thump on the chest with a smile. “You did it. You have such a beautiful girlfriend.”
It was Xiao Ping, only two years older than Xiao Luo, but with his three children, he was under a lot of pressure. There were many wrinkles around his eyes and his whole person looked very old.
Xiao Luo said hello and saw that he was not depressed, presumably Xiao Qiu lent him money.
“Why don’t you introduce your girlfriend? Do you know that all the bachelors in the village envy you now?” Xiao Ping said with a smile.
Xiao Luo had a wry smile in his heart, he also hoped this was true, but all of this was fake, he and Ji Siying were just colleagues.
Then Xiao Ping and Ji Siying were introduced to each other.
“Miss Ji, welcome to our Luo Village. Luo Zi is a good man who is honest and single-minded. I can assure you that Luo Zi is definitely the best man in our village.” Xiao Ping boasted.
His words just fell when a light cough sounded, it was Xiao Qiu who approached them.