Chapter 10 – Yu Lian and Penniless
The campus was covered in snow. Several part-time workers and student volunteers were noisily clearing up the thick layer of snow on the road using shovels. Several girls were carrying big bamboo baskets while scattering some salt on the already cleared road. This practice came from the experiences of a study in the five Dalian Islands in the north. Salt could help thawing snow and stopping the ground from freezing.
The sky turned dark very early during winter, it was already a little dark and oil lamps were lighted everywhere. Lin Qi yawned while walking in a corridor through the campus. Every passer-by dodged him, those students who just left the classrooms with books in their embrace, whether male or female, all cautiously kept away from Lin Qi.
The bell tower in the depth of the campus produced the gloomy sound of a bell, signaling that the dining hall had finished preparing dinner. Several European grey-capped greenfinches flapped their wings to flutter down from the top of a big bald tree and miserably hunted for food on the withering lawn which was just recently cleared of snow. Looking at these small birds, Lin Qi softly sighed: “Birds in winter is like Lin Qi with no money to spend, so pitiful!”
Sighing, Lin Qi looked at the towering circular stone pagoda in the distant and couldn’t help but to curl his lips. His eyes flashed with a greedy golden light.
As the empire’s elites, the students of the Fifth University enjoyed excellent accommodation. Lin Qi’s dormitory was built using thick grey marble. The six-floor tall building could accommodate two thousands students. At the four corners of the dormitory were 30-meters tall pointed square tower. At the center of the building was a huge circular dome. On the square tower was an exotic statue of a pair of wings carrying several youths and embedded in a circular multi-colored translucent shell. Its luster was extremely gorgeous and dazzling.
When entering his own room, a core member of the Ironfist Brotherhood, Lin Qi’s subordinate, Yu Lian, was sitting on Lin Qi’s bed. His two legs were raised to the bedhead and his hand was holding a sealed letter. He was complacently biting on that small mustache of his, then sneered.
Older than Lin Qi by two years but was on the same year as Lin Qi, Yu Lian was a famous playboy in the Fifth University. Born into a declining household of nobility, Yu Lian had a tall stature. His features were handsome and smart. His meticulously styled short golden hair was very elegant. A small mustache above his upper lip gave off the impression that he was smiling all the time.
Yu Lian had a pair of bright and intelligent azure-colored pupils. His eyes were agile and quick-witted as if continuously shooting amorous glances outward. By relying on his tall and robust figure, his handsome and smart features, his captivating pair of eyes, and his sweet mouth, in addition to his hereditary title of Baron, Yu Lian often appeared in the dreams of numerous University City’s female students.
Seeing Yu Lian with that lowly smile and that pink letter in his hand, Lin Qi couldn’t help but lamented: “God, did you fool that unlucky woman again? Oh, dear Yu Lian, do you really want one extra romance?”
Passionately kissing the letter in his hand, Yu Lian carefully folded the letter into a rose, then gently put is inside his shirt’s pocket. He complacently shook his thigh, looked at Lin Qi smilingly, and extended a hand: “Boss, lend me a crowing, this is a girl living in a small town, she proposed a private and intimate date with me.”
Inhaling deeply, Yu Lian shouted loudly using arias brimming with love: “A beautiful date, a shy girl, pure white skin, a soft body. Moonlight, roses, serenades, also fine wine and fragrant and tender calf meat, oh, just with one crowing, I could enjoy such a beautiful night.”
Lin Qi sighed softly. He fished out the two Redemption Talisman he bought from Priest Bahrain at the school gate, then placed the two palm-sized coarse paper on Yu Lian’s palm. “May God save your soul, you damned Yu Lian! I don’t even have one copper coin, do you hear me, not even one copper coin!”
Yu Lian’s face stiffened. Strongly patting Yu Lian’s slick and glossy head, Lin Qi snorted coldly: “There’s a Jisai nomadic performing troupe from outside the city!”
Yu Lian widened his eyes and showed a strange smile: “Oh, right, a very big-scaled Jisai performing troupe, there are more than three hundred people in total, including 47 pretty young girls. Oh, that Gina, the lead female dancer, her figure is very good, really very good; one of my hands can’t even hold her completely! Boss, you know, I had caressed at least three hundred girl’s bosom, but not one can compare to her!”
“My god!” Lin Qi had no alternative but to roll his eyes. This Jisai performing troupe just arrived not too long ago. Yu Lian unexpectedly already fooled around with its lead female dancer. Such efficiency, it could only be said that Yu Lian had an outstanding gift of seducing women.
Hooking his fingers, Lin Qi snorted coldly: “Mister Ge Lang wants to invite Gina, that lead female dancer is called Gina right? Mister Ge Lang wants to have dinner with her, if you know what I mean. Give Gina a price, if she’s satisfied, bring her to meet Mister Ge Lang. Oh, for Mister Ge Lang, you know, follow the old rules!”
Yu Lian jumped up excitedly, snapped his fingers proudly, and gracefully danced and made two turns in place.
“I knew it, I won’t delay my date with that cutie! Oh, a city girl from a rich family, I really longed for that beautiful moment when I strip the clothes from her bosom!” After hugging Lin Qi warmly, Yu Lian strode out in lively dance steps just like moving clouds and flowing water: “Rest assured, boss, your course credit, also the cost of my date, they are settled. Mister Ge Lang is a generous gentleman, I know, he’s very generous!”
“Wretched thing!” Lin Qi helplessly looked at Yu Lian’s back. He wrinkled his brows and opened his drawer. Sure enough, the last three silver coins he put inside the drawer’s hidden frame already disappeared without a trace. In the entire Fifth University, someone who dared to infiltrate Lin Qi’s room and stole the last bit of his secret stash, other than Yu Lian there was no one else.
Three lovely silver coins disappeared just like that. Lin Qi who hadn’t had dinner only felt stabbing pain in his heart.
“Oh, no! Have to think of a way to earn some money!”
After walking several rounds in his room in distress, Lin QI gave a long sigh: “Winter, I hate winter, once winter comes, merchants and travelers suddenly decrease by 90 percent, every time during winter, I’m always distressed about money! Damned patrolling Dragon Calvary, damned Guardian Office, why does University City have so many copper hats?”
Once thinking about those secret police wearing copper helmet, Lin Qi felt sadness that was hard to endure.
“I have to earn some money!”
The penniless Lin Qi sighed and helplessly looked through the window towards that tall cylindrical stone pagoda.
“Must earn some money, damn it!”