When Tang Si tried to act cute, she resembled Ne Zha from the children's book "Ten Thousand Whys" . Ji Yunshu didn't pay attention to her and just asked, "Why don't you go find Mo Ruo and ask him to accompany you?"
"Don't even talk about him, didn't I just give him a kick this morning? He's been angry at me for the whole trip. When I went to find him just then, he shut the door straight away. If you think about it, I'm his actually his saviour. Who treats their saviour like this? I shouldn't have saved him at the time, I should've just let him die."
"Ah Ji, just accompany me for a walk. You'll get sick if you're always cooped up indoors." She grabbed Ji Yunshu's sleeve and swung it to and fro.
Ji Yunshu felt extremely helpless and looked outside. Although it was evening, it was brightly lit outside and the lights cast off a red glow. Plus, the rain had stopped. She thought for a moment and nodded. "Ok."
Finally she agreed! Tang Si happily dragged her out the door.
Mingshan Academy was really quite large. In the daytime, it was secluded and tranquil yet also cozy and charming. At night, it gave off a warm and elegant feeling. There were red lanterns placed every ten metres or so on the meandering gravel path. Its light reflected off the blue green slate, the shadow of the tree and the mahogany wood. Each object had its own quality thwhich randomly interweaved together to give off a subtle, antique charm that appealed to the eyes.
The two of them wandered around the academy aimlessly. They didn't encounter a single scholar along the way. Tang Si was bewildered, "Where the hell did they all go?"
At that, Ji Yunshu recalled that the child who brought her meals had said that they were currently having lessons in the front courtyard. Since Mingshan Academy was so famous, it went without saying that there would be much to learn from its lessons. All the scholars must have gone to attend.
If she kept on walking aimlessly with Tang Si, it would be more boring and noisier than being inside. Might as well drag Tang Si over there.
Inside the hall.
The numerous students sat upright with straight backs. Books were spread out in front of them and freshly ground ink at their sides. They stared straight at the teacher and listened attentively, eyes gleaming with a thirst for knowledge. On the lecture stage, an older man sat cross-legged with eyes closed, swaying his head as he lectured on the topic of 'Piety as the fundamental principle'.
"The principle of piety was articulated well in ancient times. All one's actions shalt place piety forefront; the propriety of piety observed, compounded for thy closest kin. 'Mencius' Classic of Filial Piety' hath said that one must first exude propriety, as naturally as one rises to stand. Hundred Schools of Thought hath remarked contemplatively of the masses, thy father is the heavens, thy mother is the earth, to be unwed means to the first to bend thy knee out of piety. So piety is a virtue, it is benevolence. You must remember to act out of your own agency, Jiang Zi's 'Encyclopedia' also said, that which is called……"
The voice was deep and rich, but as it grew softer, his head also drooped lower.
A few days ago, the master spent a lot of money to invite this teacher. Although he wasn't some divine teacher, he was famous in the Jing region. A vast majority of his students passed the imperial provincial examination. Although he really wasn't on the same level as Teacher Yu, Teacher wanted his students to learn from multiple schools of thought so that they could distil the essentials from each. So he invited this teacher over to let his students learn from a different teacher.
Frankly speaking, it was like inviting any old speaker and have everyone listen to what he had to say and learn from it. The teacher was speaking at the front and the students became like statues and listened without moving until the teacher stopped talking……
He fell asleep!
The scholars who were unable to take it any longer stretched their necks and wriggled around, loosening up their muscles and bones.
One of the boys with small eyes and a small nose turned around to look and happened to see Ji Yunshu standing outside of the study hall. He immediately nudged Lin Shu who was next to him and leaned over to say, "Lin Shu, look".
Lin Shu frowned, angry that his study was interrupted. At the same time, he turned around with annoyance to look at the direction he was pointing to and saw Ji Yunshu and Tang Si.
"Why are they here?"
"I don't know."
"Master letting them stay here was already giving them face. Now they even dare to come here to the study hall."
He was mad as hell!
The small-eyed boy once again leaned towards him and let out a sinister smile, "Lin Shu, it's all because of them that you were punished by the teacher. Don't you want to…..." take revenge?
He didn't even finish talking when Lin Shu raised his hand to hit him heavily on the head.
"Why are you hitting me?"
"Don't cause trouble. I don't want to be punished and copy the 'Poetic Essays' again. My hands are still sore."
It hurts a lot! He held his head in pain, "Then what?"
Then the two of them sat tight waiting for an opportunity. In any case, Lin Shu had to take revenge.
The teacher had his head bowed for a long while before raising it again. He squinted his small eyes and muttered. It looked like he couldn't carry on anymore. He then closed his books and carried them under his arm. Then he stood up, picked up his robes and said while he walked towards the exit behind him, "All of you should study on your own, learn the principles of piety well, the topic for this year's imperial civil service examination might be exactly this."
His voice was deep but weak and dragged out even longer than the master and could only be no longer heard when he disappeared through the side door on the left.
Once the teacher left, the students in the study hall that were supposed to study continued studying. But Lin Shu smiled evilly and brought the people that usually hung out with him and walked with long strides towards the door.
Ji Yunshu actually wanted to leave when the teacher left as well. But just because she happened to see Lin Shu staring at her while he walked over, she may as well just wait where she was.
"Is that Teacher Ji?"
Sure enough, Lin Shu had already clearly figured out their identity.
Ji Yunshu humbly bowed, "Indeed."
Lin Shu smiled coldly, "The one named Jing amongst you was full of literary and philosophical knowledge. He had flawless logic for any argument. You seem similarly clean and full of elegance with a scholarly air. I wager that you're not bad as well?"
His voice was so loud! It naturally attracted everyone to stand around and watch. Those who were originally packing up to return to their rooms all came up to watch the show.
Ji Yunshu smiled. "This one is but a boorish man, how could I compare to you? You are scholars of Mingshan Academy. The talented among you will be taking the imperial civil service examinations in the capital. Some of you will definitely emerge as one of the top three in the examinations. This one cannot compare to you in any way at all so I won't try to display my measly ability in front of experts like yourselves."
Lin Shu took two strides forward and his huge figure loomed over her. He raised his eyebrows and smiled treacherously. "Teacher Ji, on the surface you're humble but your words…...are not humble at all." His words were deliberately provocative!
 Seems to be a children's comic or cartoon... imagine Dora the explorer or Caillou lol.