Chapter 20.3 – Yan Feng’s Unusual Hobby
Nian Bing calmly said, “Maybe I am. Although, I think that in the future, Xue Jing and I won’t be able to meet each other that much. Miss Ling’er, if you are done questioning me, I’ll return to the Association. During that time, I think I won’t leave the Association. If Miss Ling’er still have any doubts, you can find me inside the library at any time. Big Brother Shi Jiu, you are riding a horse, so I’ll take my leave first.” As he finished speaking, he turned around and, with firm steps, he proceeded toward the Mage Association.
Long Ling was somewhat lifeless as she looked at Nian Bing’s back and mumbled, “Senior apprentice, do you think that I am a bit biased toward Jing Jing because she’s my good friend? Nian Bing is from a humble origin and I think Jing Jing must have said something to him that bruised his self-esteem. From the start, I know that Nian Bing is a good person. He doesn’t seem like he wants to harm anyone. He’s only carefully protecting his heart.”
Shi Jiu looked at Nian Bing and toward Long Ling unrestrained words, he inwardly felt happy. He agreed. “Yes! I also think Nian Bing is outstanding, but it’s unfortunate that he’s experienced many hardships since he was a child. Xue Jing, that girl, is really mad. You also can’t let her speak as she pleases. In the future, if there is an opportunity, you need to give her plenty of advice. As for Nian Bing, you don’t need to be anxious for him. I felt like he’s not someone who holds grudges. That matter had already passed, just let it go. It’s getting late, we should also return. I’ll go and bring Nian Bing.” As he finished speaking, he urged the saddled horse to go after Nian Bing.
Nian Bing didn’t refuse Shi Jiu’s invitation. He didn’t put the matter with Xue Jing in his heart, but Long Ling cared about it. He only cared about magic and how he could upgrade his strength. As for everything else, especially women, he didn’t think about it with the exception of his bet with the Wise Girl Luo Rou, which left him a bit interested.
The whole journey continued in silence. By the time they returned to the Association, it was already very late at night. Nian Bing properly changed into his Great Mage’s clothes. After he returned the fire mage’s gown and the Flame Star rod to Long Ling, he arrived at the library all alone.
Among the ocean of magic books, Nian Bing forgot about everything else. He even forgot he should first inform Feng Nu about the situation. He didn’t know how much time had passed. From outside, the room was a light in the dark night. Inside the library, the magical lamps could automatically brighten the room. Nian Bing didn’t look at every book. He only read books related to magic cultivation and some books on the basic knowledge of magic. Those are the two types of books he needed the most, especially those books that introduced the method of manufacturing magic scrolls. Those books took up most of his study time. Each time someone from the city came to deliver food, Nian Bing’s thoughts were concentrated on the book and he didn’t look at who delivered his food. He only smelled the fragrance and kept reading while he ate. During this time, that was all he did.
“Urgh! So tired! I don’t know how many days it’s been.” Nian Bing stretched his body, rubbed the sore muscles on his back and slowly got up. He finally read all the books he needed on the first floor. Relying on his inherently strong memory, he was able to engrave in his mind all the things he wanted to know.
He remembered a lot of things. Again, he didn’t rest at all. Nian Bing only felt very dizzy. Although he very much longed to lie down and sleep, he understood that in this kind of situation, he should meditate instead. He can’t relax and waste a even a single moment. Magic cultivation was like rowing a boat upstream. If he stopped moving forward, then he will fall back. It had been a while since he connect with the magic elements. His magic power inevitably declined. As he thought about it, he made an effort to rouse his spirit force. He properly sat cross-legged and begun to perceive the magic elements outside his body. With the assistance of the Ice Snow Goddess’s Stone and the Flame God’s Stone, he restored his spirit force.
By the time Nian Bing had awaken from his meditation, it was daytime. The sunshine passed through the windows of the library and shone onto him, momentarily making him warm. He knew that by continuously meditating through the knowledge of magic he learnt in the depth of the night, he was able to understand some things. He had already started to somewhat understand quite a few things about the source of his fire and ice magics. He indistinctly became aware that the balance between the two types of magic force were not at all stable. He still wanted to further investigate to reach the stage where he could fuse the two magic forces into a genuine Fire and Ice Homology. Practically speaking, he didn’t have any guidelines on what to do, after all, Fire and Ice are two opposing magics. Right now, because the two magic forces were whirling inside his body, they didn’t influence each other. In the case that balance was to break, he feared that his body would be unable to endure. Don’t even mention about the fusion of the magic force, as the problem lay on his ability to preserve his life. For that reason, Nian Bing knew that if he continued to cultivate, the whirlpool inside of him would keep getting bigger, along with hidden dangers it’ll carry with it. So, he didn’t dare to be rash. At the moment, he only wished to go to the second floor, the third floor and even, the mysterious fourth floor. If he knew about the theories, he would be able to guide himself. Although what he desired for was very uncertain, there was more or less some clues about the general direction.
As he heard the sound of the door opening, Nian Bing unconsciously raised his head to look. He only saw Long Ling walking in with a tray. As she saw the awakened Nian Bing, she couldn’t help but cry in alarm. “Nian Bing, you finish meditating?”
Nian Bing faintly smile and said, “Has it been such a long time since I entered the library? Were you the one who keep delivering my food?”
Long Ling said in a somewhat discontented manner, “You! To like reading books is a good thing, but you can’t read day and night like this! If it weren’t for my dad who prevented me from disturbing you, I would’ve already stopped you from reading already. You took three days and three nights just to read books. Afterwards, you meditated for two days and two nights. Really, I never saw anyone so eager to study. It’s no wonder that at such a young age, your magic had already reached the Great Mage’s realm. Here, for you. Eat something first. You must be hungry after two days of meditation.”
Nian Bing took the tray. On it, sat a bowl of plain rice congee, two steamed buns and pickled vegetables. Again, it was only ordinary food. However, at this moment, as he looked at these food, he clearly felt a warm feeling in his heart. Long Ling is actually a good woman. He could only be considered barely a friend, but she treated him very well. This feeling, he would make sure to pay back.
“What is with that foolish look? Don’t tell me you’re not hungry?” Long Ling lightly touched Nian Bing.
“Ah! I’m hungry. Of course, I’m hungry. I’m eating right away.”
Long Ling learned what it meant to wolf down one’s food in the end. In less than the time to take 30 breaths, the bowl of congee and the two steamed were completely devoured. Nian Bing still continued to wolf down the pickled vegetables until the dish was clean. When he swallowed the last bite, he patted his stomach with satisfaction.
“You eat so quickly. Aren’t you afraid you’d choke?” She looked at Nian Bing who seemed like he hadn’t eat anything in his life before. Long Ling couldn’t help but puff a laugh.
Nian Bing took the tray and gave it back to Long Ling and said, “Many thanks to you. Right now, I managed to rest. I think I should go to the second floor.”
“What?” ‘He still wants to read? Did he even rest for a moment?’ Long Ling looked at Nian Bing with shock.
Nian Bing faintly smiled and said, “No need. The second floor and the third floor still have many things I need to study. It is very difficult to stumble upon such a treasure trove. I’d really hate to leave it here.” As he finished, he proceeded to go upstairs.
Long Ling pulled Nian Bing and said, “Wait for for bit. You know what, yesterday, Jing Jing came to find you. Furthermore, Yan Feng also came.”
Nian Bing’s brows wrinkled as he asked, “Why are they looking for me?”
Long Ling replied, “Yan Feng came while you were still studying. He also came back the next day. He even saw you a while ago from the door. Since he saw you concentrating, he quietly left. As he was leaving, he even said that your look of concentration was very attractive. He even said a few more strange words but I don’t understand what he meant, but, at that time, he was making a kind of face that I saw for the first time.”
Nian Bing said with a wry smile, “Alright, no need to describe it. Oh! That’s right, Ling’er, who is Yan Feng in the end? It seemed like no one dared to offend him in Ice Snow City, not even Miss Luo Rou’s father, the honorable Earl.”
Long Ling answered, “Ah! He… his identity is very special. From what I know, he is the seventh son of the current Ice Moon Empire’s King, his Highness the Seventh Prince. However, I don’t know for what reason he was driven away to Ice Snow City by the King and let him reside here. The King even granted him a mansion here. Yan Feng doesn’t seem to have any hobby, except for training martial arts, he sometimes goes out to take a walk around and he rarely participated in banquets. The other day, he was attending the banquet because he once asked Luo’er for her help in an emergency. I felt that you are very special to him. It’s the first time I saw him that concerned about someone else.”
Nian Bing sighed and said, “This kind of concern is still not good. Why did Xue Jing want to find me?”
Long Ling spoke, “Jing Jing seemed to have fought with someone and had received an injury. She followed my words and sent someone to find you while she waited at Pure Wind House with that woman. Because of a brief remark, they fought again. As a result, a lot of people were injure since the woman was very difficult to deal with. Nevertheless, Uncle Xue stepped in and told her that you were no longer in Pure Wind House. Then, she agreed to leave. According to Jing Jing, that woman’s strength is unexpectedly no less weaker than Uncle Xue. She seemed to have the strength of a Martial Master. Jing Jing wanted me to inform you that the woman broke a lot of things in Pure Wind House. Altogether, it amounts to 167 amethyst coins. You have to come and give the compensation.”
Nian Bing whole body slightly trembled. “AH! Don’t tell me she went to find me? This is really bad! How can I forget about her? Ling’er, I’ll go out first. Many thanks for informing about these matters.”