Zhang Tianxing was really fond of Suan Ni. Or, to put it another way, He was really fond of small animals.
Jiang Lan watched Zhang Tianxing feed Suan Ni with all kinds of snacks from his drawer the whole morning. He was puzzled that Zhang Tianxing seemed to have an infinite supply of snacks in his drawer.
Finally, Xue Meng explained.” Have you seen his drawer full of snacks? He used them to attract cats and dogs, but he has failed to attract even one cat, and most of his snacks ended up in our stomachs.”
Xue Meng signed and kept repeating that maybe gods finally have mercy on him.
As Zhang Tianxing was stroking Suan Ni’s belly, he turned and gave Xue Meng a cold glance.” No more snacks for you now.”
Hearing this, Xue Meng turned to Jiang Lan.” Hear this? This is a man who places a cat above his friend.”
Zhang Tianxing was so immersed in the pleasure of stroking a cat that he chose to ignore him.
Suan Ni was made very comfortable by his constant attention that he barely left his nest.
At noon break, Xue Meng asked Zhang Tianxing to join them for lunch. Zhang Tianxing had finally returned from his month-long leave of absence. Xue Meng thought this occasion called for a lunch party.
Contrary to Xue Meng’s wish, Zhang Tianxing, the reason for their get-together lunch, turned down his suggestion.” I have to get back now. Evening, maybe.”
Then he drove away.
Staring at his departing car and shrouded in his car’s exhaust fumes, Xue Meng.” ?????”
In disappointment, he grabbed Jiang Lan and asked Xiao Xiaoyu to join them.” We can have a proper meal together without him. I will exclude him from our parties from now on!”
Xiao Xiaoyu gave him a cold face.” Are you still in kindergarten? Stop being this childish.”
They still had a good lunch together.
After they went back, they found Zhang Tianxing was already in the office with a gigantic carton box beside him. While holding Suan Ni in his arms, he was bringing out snacks from the box one by one for Suan Ni’s inspection.” Like this?”
Suan Ni leaned closer, sniffed, and shook his head.
He then threw the packet away and picked up another one.” How about this one?”
Suan Ni nodded this time. With Suan Ni’s approval, he put this packet inside his drawer.
Xue Meng came closer to have a look. There were various assortments of dried meat, fish, and fruit in the box, sealed in vacuum seal bags without any brand label.
After Suan Ni finished selecting, Zhang Tianxing opened a packet of dried fruit for him, put all those snacks that didn’t meet Suan Ni’s approval inside the box, and started distributing these around the office.
Jiang Lan scrutinized the snacks but failed to recognize most of them except a few. With a bag of Dan Mu fruit in his hand, he asked Uncle Zhou in a lowered voice.” Where does Zhang Tianxing come from?”
These ordinary-looking dried meat and fruits were all meats of the magic beast and magic fruits of the rarest sort. Zhang Tianxing apparently was not an ordinary mortal because he could bring back these many rare snacks after returning from home.
“Tianxing.” Uncle Zhou turned to make sure Xue Meng and Xiao Xiaoyu were out of earshot, then he whispered.” He is from the Dragon and Tiger Mountain.”
Taoism originated in the Dragon and Tiger Mountain in Gan Provincethe original text is 赣, the abbreviated name of Jiangxi Province in China, which was also the headquarter of the Zhang TianshiTianshi, the original text is 天师, literally means heavenly master Sect. Since Zhang Daoling first accomplished his cultivation and achieved immortality in the Dragon and Tiger mountain, Zhang Tianshi Sect had been headquartered in the Dragon and Tiger Mountain, managing their affair from Shang Qing Palace, taking up residence in the Tianshi Mansion. Their line lasted sixty-three generations uninterrupted. Every emperor in every dynasty chose to honor them by granting them titles and royal privileges. Since ancient times, the saying “There is Zhang in the south and Kong in the north” had been circulating, which is a testament to its power and influence.
In modern times, despite the decline of Taoism, the power of the Tianshi Mansion was still formidable.
And Zhang Tianxing was the second son of the Dragon and Tiger Mountain’s current master.
Master Zhang had two sons. The older son Zhang Tianling was famed for his outstanding cultivation levels, artistic skills and known to the world as the designated master in waiting, preparing to assume his father’s position. But it was rarely known that the younger son Zhang Tianxing was more advanced in his cultivation level. Only because of his eccentricity and disregard for social affairs, the Tianshi Mansion considered it necessary that he make as few public appearances as possible. After he reached adulthood, Zhang Tianxing left the mountain, claiming he was looking for opportunities. He had concealed his enrollment in a college and his employment in a Street Administration Office from his family.
When the Tianshi Mansion got wind of this, he had already been working in the Street Administration Office for the past two years.
Uncle Zhou added as a gossip.”Zhang Tianxing has been on a leave of absence because something happened in the Tianshi Mansion, and his presence was needed there.”
After all, he was a member of the Tianshi Mansion. If his family needed him, he had to go back.
Jiang Lan said.” No wonder.”
No wonder Zhang Tianxing could bring a pile of dried Magic fruits and Magic beast meats as if these are ordinary commodities.
Jiang Lan heard his older brothers talking about the Tianshi Mansion. If the Dragon Palace was powerful and influential in the monster race, the Tianshi Mansion enjoyed the same status among human cultivators as the Dragon Palace in monsters.
Besides that, Tianshi Mansion’s headquarters was in the Dragon and Tiger mountains. After cooperating with the local government to develop and run many tourist resorts and various tourism facilities in the mountain, its revenue kept expanding, making a lot of easy money.
Looking at Zhang Tianxing, who was enjoying stroking Suan Ni, Jiang Lan didn’t know what to think.
He didn’t expect to encounter a member of the Tianshi Mansion in this small Street Administration Office.
Jiang Lan returned to his seat. Seeing Jiang Lan’s seemingly thoughtful and worried look, Zhang Tianxing suddenly said out of the blue.” I have nothing against the Monster.”
Jiang Lan turned to look at him. Despite his cold face, Zhang Tianxing had a soft look in his eyes when he looked at Suan Ni,
The Monster race now enjoyed peaceful coexistence with the humans. Even the Monster-killing human cultivators had moved into the same building with the Monster Bureau as neighbors, becoming a brother in arms under the administration of the Security Department. But despite that, the anti-monster sentiment was still a strong undercurrent among the human cultivators.
If you are not from my race, then you must be against me. This old saying was still in circulation nowadays.
Not all humans could accept foreign elements in their society. The human cultivators were no exception.
Even though Zhang Tianxing was reticent, he was very considerate. After Jiang Lan returned from Uncle Zhou’s desk with a worried look, he guessed Jiang Lan was worried that his little brother was too close to him that he might get hurt. So he said this to put Jiang Lan’s mind at ease.
Jiang Lan thought he misunderstood him. But after a pause, he didn’t explain. Instead, he gave him a friendly smile.
Zhang Tianxing went a step further.” May I have Nini as a guest at my home?”
In the office, he could stroke his little brother as much as he wanted, but leaving his brother alone at his home was out of the question.
Jiang Lan froze his smile and refused him coldly.
Suan Ni wagged his tail and meowed to indicate his agreement with his brother. Arching his back, he stretched, then he jumped back to Jiang Lan’s desk with a packet of his favorite dried fruit between his teeth to feed his little brother.
Zhang Tianxing watched him in disappointment.
Jiang Lan moved his lips a little, feeling a little embarrassed for his little brother’s total disregard for his indulger’s feeling, walking away with Zhang Tianxing’s gift without even a meow as thanks.
Nearing the end of office hours in the afternoon, Xue Meng again brought up his suggestion that they have dinner together.
This time, cold-faced Zhang Tianxing agreed.
Xue Meng was very chatty, and could never keep his mouth shut. Jiang Lan and Xiao Xiaoyu walked on his sides, listening to his gossip. Zhang Tianxing walked behind them with Suan Ni in his arms, enjoying his company.
Jiang Lan turned to look at Suan Ni, who appeared to be enjoying Zhang Tianxing’s cuddling. So he left them alone.
To focus on Xue Meng’s gossip.
Xue Meng held up his phone to show his phone screen.” The OPoriginal poster said he had seen a mermaid in Xun Yang Lake. You see, he even attached a picture.”
He showed a post on a local forum; most of the topics on this forum were about love lives and personal life, or unlikely and extraordinary stories. This OP claimed in the post that he accidentally shot a picture of a mermaid while taking a few landscape photos in Xun Yang Lake.
He also posted the shot he accidentally took. In the photo, a vague woman’s figure could be seen in the middle of the Xun Yang Lake. Despite the great distance from the photographer, the contour of the woman’s face could still be described as delicate.
Most of the replies below the OP were doubtful, accusing the OP of making up a fake story.
Xue Meng scrolled down the post and pointed to a reply from OP.” Most of the replies were doubtful about the authenticity of the photoshoot, so the OP said he would go to the Lake again yesterday afternoon to look for more evidence to back up his claim.”
Jiang Lan had a bad feeling about this. After a pause, he asked.” Is the OP still alive?”
Xue Meng was surprised by his question.” How do you know the OP was missing?”
This post went viral after the OP went missing, constantly occupying the top position of this forum. Yesterday afternoon, this OP went to Xun Yang Lake with his cameras to look for mermaids. Around midnight, he suddenly posted a reply saying he had found the mermaid. But after he posted a blurry photo with a dark background, he suddenly went missing. So far, he hadn’t made an appearance yet.
On the forum, no one was certain if he was missing for real or just trying to generate much buzz about it by pretending to be missing.
At this moment, many more replies were posted, calling for the OP’s reappearance.
Jiang Lan recalled he had seen no one alive when he was there yesterday.” Have you heard that several deaths occurred in Xun Yang Lake?
Xue Meng was shocked.”NO.”
Xiao Xiaoyu seemed to know about it.” I have heard a little about it, but I am not sure if it is real or not. News media didn’t mention it.”
Jiang Lan thought, of course, the News media didn’t mention it. The corpses found had already been picked clean of flesh. The Police didn’t even know where to look for clues. Announcing these deaths would only cause panic.
He asked Xue Meng to send the link to this post to him, and he reposted this link to Ying Qiao, together with a message.
[Yesterday afternoon, someone mistook a Jin Po for a mermaid and came to look for it. Now, many people have seen this post.]
To cope with a situation like this, the Monster Bureau established a publicity department. The full name of this department was the Public Information Surveillance Department, which was responsible for controlling the spread of information concerning the Monster Race.
Ying Qiao promptly replied to his message:[ The Bureau has already sent someone over in the early morning. A wounded man was found in a patch of farmland a kilometer away from the Lake, who should be the OP of this post. Now he is in the hospital.]
He had a deep wound on his arms; a slice of flesh was bitten off. It was unclear how he managed to survive Jin Po’s attack. He escaped and managed to run for more than one kilometer away from the Lake and finally collapsed in a patch of farmland. When the auxiliary service of the Monster Bureau arrived on the scene to clean up the battlefield, they found him remained unconscious and sent him to the hospital.
Now the Bureau had found the OP. The OP’s post should be taken care of soon.
After hearing this, Jiang Lan changed the topic:[ Do you have time tomorrow night? I will buy you dinner.]
He had already mentioned to Ying Qiao that he would invite him to dinner the first thing when he received the bonus. But many things that happened in between forced him to put off his invitation. Now he was in possession of sizable pocket money from his fourth brother, plus the bonus. As a wealthy man with a bulging wallet, he felt urged to help a poor friend in need.
By the way, he also planned to talk about how to spend their limited income wisely.
Ying Qiao was apparently unaware of Jiang Lan’s calculation. After receiving his invitation, he felt the pleasure of parents witnessing the accomplishments of their cubs while being concerned that this dinner might cost the Little Monster too much.
When the Little Monster received his bonus, the first thing in his mind was to invite me to dinner.
Pleasure, satisfaction, and happiness.
[Ying Qiao: All right.]
Cheng Hua saw his still dragon tail suddenly start wagging back and forth, and put a hand on it to still it.” Don’t move. I haven’t finished applying the ointment.”
Hearing this, Ying Qiao pocketed his phone and felt bored. After a while, he couldn’t help bragging to Cheng Hua.” The Little Monster invited me to dinner tomorrow night.”
He offered his compliment to get him off his back.” How very thoughtful of him.”
He said this while holding a jar of lanolin ointment. He applied the cream evenly on Ying Qiao’s golden dragon scales with a brush made of wool.
Ying Qiao had returned to his original dragon form. Curled on a beauty salon bed, he spread out his white wings. Cheng Hua had never seen him in a better mood.
And he seemed to take issue with Cheng Hua’s compliment.” I have to go to dinner tomorrow. So I need to give my feathers a beauty treatment.”
Then he added with knotted brows.” Ten feathers fell off this month, three more than the last month.”
He said this like a middle-aged man concerned about his baldness.
Cheng Hua was used to his fussiness. He continued to compliment him.” Your feathers couldn’t be in better shape and very healthy. Losing ten feathers was very natural. He heard Chong Ming Bird almost went bald, losing nearly all of his feathers, and was searching for a magic regeneration potion.”
Perhaps this news was terrifying for Ying Qiao. He fell into silence.
But his silence lasted only three minutes.” More ointment on the scales, please, including the hairs on the tail, a little dry recently.”
Cheng Hua.” Ok.”
He kept complaining in his mind.
What’s the use of maintaining shining golden scales? Do you dare to show them off in the Little Monster’s presence?
No, you don’t.
So what’s the use of all these treatments?