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Early in the morning, Cheng Xiao Xiao was woken up by some noises coming from their yard and it sounded like Zheng Yuan. She was curious what was going on outside.
She pulled the blanket over the sister before she put on a jacket and went outside. She found Zheng Yuan practicing the horse stand squat in the backyard and next to him was none other than their own mother!
Horse stance squat
Photo credit: baike.com
What was going on?
She paused for a bit and approached the two. Baffled, she asked, “Mom, Zheng Yuan is practicing martial art?”
“Yes, Zheng Yuan has been too lazy so I had to watChapter over him.” Said Mrs. Cheng gently, “Since you are up, you can watChapter him for me, and I can go prepare breakfast!”
“Ohhh….” Replied the still confused Cheng Xiao Xiao.
Sitting down in the yard, Cheng Xiao Xiao rubbed her eyes. She looked at the brother who was squatting in the yard motionlessly and was quite impressed. He had a solemn look, his thighs spread at a 15-degree angle, same width as his shoulders; both feet pointing forward, center of gravity moved downward; both feet spread of two to three feet apart, both arms went from a circular formation to palm down, muChapter like what martial artists look like in the kung fu movies she had seen in the past.
She was very curious about the background of this family.
Normal farmers didn’t teaChapter their kids to read and practice martial arts. Without any memory of her “past”, she has been wondering about this. She could tell her parents didn’t come across as regular villagers, nor did her siblings look like they grew up in a remote village. Now that she had seen her parents teaching her siblings reading and martial art, she wondered if all these have something to do with her father’s injury?
She pondered for quite a while, but couldn’t figure out anything.
After breakfast the next morning, Cheng Xiao Xiao was just about to take her brother Zheng Yuan up into the mountains. After all, if she wanted to level up the dimension, she’d need to find and collect more precious items into the dimension. She didn’t expect visitors at her front door.
“Xiao Xiao, you and Zheng Yuan going up the mountain?”
The slightly hoarse voice carried a hint of nervousness. The owner of this voice was Liu Danhang, a resident of Willow Village. He was about 17 year old. A slight blush was visible on his still slightly childish and honest face. He looked both of longing and infatuation.
The corner of Cheng Xiao Xiao’s mouth twitched a bit. She was wordless. It was obvious that this boy was fond of the original Cheng Xiao Xiao, but without the memories between the two of them, she didn’t have too muChapter fondness toward him.
She didn’t respond to him right away. Zheng Yuan, who was standing nearby, tugged at her sleeve, “Big sister, if Danhang ge1 accompany us into the mountain, we won’t have to be worried about running into dangers!”
Suddenly remembering her previous encounter with the banded krait, Cheng Xiao Xiao nodded slightly, then turned and led the way.
Cheng Zheng Yuan gave Liu Danhang a smile then dashed to follow his older sister.
Liu Danhang recovered after a slight pause. A happy smile spread on his plain face. He quickly followed behind Cheng Xiao Xiao and her brother.
“Big sister, are we going to gather firewood or herb first?” Zheng Yuan knew that they were there to gather herbs for their father, so he decided to ask her for her decision first.
After trekking through an entire mountain, Cheng Xiao Xiao was exhausted and taking a break in a shadow of a tree. Liu Danhang was not far away, but he didn’t catChapter up to chat with the two of them.
Wiping her sweat away, Cheng Xiao Xiao took a look around and replied, “We still have quite a bit of firewood left at home. Let’s go gather some herbs!”
“Okay!” Replied Cheng Zheng Yuan obediently.
Liu Danhang noticed the two of them continuing on, he resumed follow them after a slight hesitation.
“Big sister, is this an herb?”
“Big sister, what’s the name of this? What kind of effects does it have?”
“Big sister, why does this herb have so muChapter spines?”
“Big sister, how muChapter longer are we going to be gathering herbs!”
1. Ge – literal meaning is “older brother”. Here Zheng Yuan was using that as a respectful form for someone older than him, not that they are actually related.
While Cheng Zheng Yuan was asking all kind of questions, the two of them were gathering more and more herbs. Liu Danhang, who were following nearby, had given up hunting but gathered the herbs that he recognized. He planned to give these to Cheng Xiao Xiao and her brother.
The three of them walked further and further. Before they realized it, they have already trekked through three hills1. It was as though they had forgotten about time and exhaustion and gathered more and more herbs.
“Big sister, we are already in the early afternoon, should we start gathering firewood?”
Zheng Yuan stopped and looked at the sun before he shouted out to his big sister.
It was then when he said Liu Danhang approaching them with a big bundle of herbs. Cheng Zheng Yuan was a bit surprised, “Danhang ge, why are you gathering herbs too?”
“It’s for you!” Liu Danhang smiled shyly and cast a glance over at the one sitting under the tree.
“Why thank you!” Smiled Cheng Zheng Yuan happily and shouted toward the one under the tree “Big sister, I think we have enough herbs. Let’s stop gathering more herbs!”
“Wait, I will come right over!”
That’s what Cheng Xiao Xiao said, but she was staring intently at something that looked like mushroom in front of her. After sniffing it, she was quite certain it smelled like lingzhi mushroom2.
It wasn’t that she couldn’t tell they were lingzhi; rather, in her previous life, cultivated lingzhi was quite common. But cultivated lingzhi did not remotely measure up to these wild lingzhi that she was looking at.
Lingzhi, also known as lingzhicao (“mushroom grass”), shenzi (“divine mushroom”, with shen; “spirit; God; supernatural; divine”), zhicao (“mushroom grass”), xiancao (“immortality plant”, with xian, “(Daoism) transcendent; immortal; wizard”) and ruicao (“auspicious plant”, with rui, “auspicious; felicitous omen). They belong to the Order Polyporales, mainly come in red (chizhi) and purple (zizhi) forms. They are saprophytic fungi and grow at the base and stumps of deciduous trees.
Photo credit: cqcb.com
Photo credit: Wikipedia
Lingzhi taste slightly bitter and are mild in nature. They have effects on the heart, lungs, liver, and the spleen. They are good for the heart and can calm your nerves, calm the lungs and help with respiration, regulate the qi and clear blood stasis, nourish the liver and strengthen the spleen. It’s main application is to treat the weak bodies, but can also be used to treat tiredness, palpitation, insomnia, vertigo, dizziness, persistent coughing.
Lingzhi had been used as herbs for over 1000 years and are very precious herbs. Among the different types of lingzhi, purple ones are the most precious.
What she saw in front of her were black lingzhi, a relative common type; but, she still considered herself lucky to have found this precious herbs in this world.
Should she collect this into the dimension?
If they could help the dimension level up and allow her to grow them in the future, she would even be able to sell them!
Looking happy, Cheng Xiao Xiao quickly tossed the lingzhi into the dimension. She couldn’t hop in and check the status right away, but she would be able to when she got home.
Returning with her bundle of herbs, she felt awkward when she saw Liu Danhang standing next to her brother, but she walked toward them anyway.
“Big sister, Danhang ge collected herbs for us too!” Said Cheng Zheng Yuan with a big smile.
Liu Danhang was too shy to see how Cheng Xiao Xiao reacted. With a simple and honest look, he reached back and rubbed the back of his head.
Looking at his foolish face, she couldn’t get her thankful words out, so she turned and said to her brother, “Let’s take a break first, then we can collect some fire wood and head home!”
“Big sister, I am thirsty and hungry, give me white radis.h.!.+3” Cheng Zheng Yuan treated the white radish that his sister grown as snacks.
Cheng Xiao Xiao took a look and scolded him lightly, “All you could think of is to eat!”
“White radishes are delicious and quenChapter the thirst, why wouldn’t it?” Justified Cheng Zheng Yuan righteously.
“What is white radish?”
1. Apologies. I have been using “mountains” in the past, but judging by the context – that they could trek through multiple in a day – these would probably be better referred to as hills. Hills and mountains are not as distinguishable in Chinse than in English.
2. In the Chinese language, língzhī (灵芝) is a compound. It comprises líng (灵); “spirit, spiritual; soul; miraculous; sacred; divine; mysterious; efficacious; effective)” and zhī (芝); “(traditional) plant of longevity; fungus; seed; branch; mushroom; excrescence”)
Random translator note:
3. Was it me or was he quickly turning into a spoiled brat?! Where did he expect her to pull these out of? He didn’t know about the dimension!
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