It was probably ordered earlier, but the maid stationed outside immediately led the way for Gu Zuo. He was taken to an una.s.suming room and was asked to enter.
After he came in, Gu Zuo didn’t need to inspect everything to know that not one of the furnishings or decorations were out of place; the style wasn’t tasteless… In comparison, the Qi Family household was an ostentatious rich upstart.
Gongyi Tianheng wore a long robe, and sat behind a desk covered with unread doc.u.ments. On his side calmly stood a solemn young man. His appearance was exactingly rigid and uniform; only, at first glance the words “loyal dog” were evoked in one’s mind.
When Gu Zuo came in, Tianheng put down his pen, looked up, and smiled. His voice was very gentle: “Ah Zuo woke up? Please, take a seat.”
His smile  could really brighten a room. This face…even without the moonlight to enhance his stats , his handsomeness was off the charts.
Gu Zuo didn’t dare stare too much and sat across from him: “Young master Gongyi.”
Tianheng laughed: “I’ve been calling you Ah Zuo, so wouldn’t it be better if you called me by my name?”
Gu Zuo thought about it and felt that obliging his patron would facilitate an understanding, but he couldn’t recklessly act above his station. Thus, he switched to: “Young master Tianheng.”
Gongyi Tianheng went straight to the point and quietly asked: “You said you can cure me. But is this true?”
Originally, Gu Zuo wanted to confess about his system first, but his patron was obviously more concerned about his health… Which seemed quite normal. But in the end, it was tough explaining whether he was able to treat his illness or not.
Then, Gu Zuo turned his gaze to the silent young man.
Tianheng laughed: “This is the leader of my personal security force, the Tianlong Guards. He is very trustworthy.”
Gu Zuo let out a couple of hollow laughs, his eyes resolute.
As a matter of fact, trust wasn’t the issue; rather, the issue concerned his life’s safety.
His patron was very intelligent, but still, he couldn’t have known that he possessed something so extraordinary. Nonetheless, he’d better inform him enough to understand so that he could make an informed decision.
Tianheng clearly understood and ordered: “Dragon One , you’re dismissed. Don’t eavesdrop.”
The stern young man sized up Gu Zuo with a glance and felt that even the young master would be able to handle this weak chicken. He prompted left the room and closed the door.
Gongyi Tianheng returned his gaze to Gu Zuo: “You can be at ease. This door is special; once it’s closed, no sounds from within can be heard from outside. Even though Dragon One has keen senses, because I commanded him, he won’t come within thirty meters  of this room and hear what we discuss.”
Gu Zuo was relieved, but remembered his illness. He was slightly alarmed and tried to examine him: “First, can I check your pulse?”
Tianheng rolled up his sleeve to expose a bit of his pale arm, and placed it on the table.
Gu Zuo didn’t hesitate and began searching along his arm.
Although he didn’t have any genuine experience in curing illnesses, he’d learned enough to know how to take a pulse. Something as simple as that was easy to do…
After he finished, he was startled.
The pulse…there wasn’t any.
But without a pulse, shouldn’t he be dead?
He couldn’t possibly be a zombie!
Gu Zuo carefully looked at Gongyi Tianheng. Besides his handsome and pale skin, was there anything strange? Really though, according to his pulse, his body ought to be exhibiting many warning signs.
But right now, he couldn’t identify any, so what was the problem? His pulse belonged to people who died inexplicable deaths.
So, Gu Zuo promptly opened his mouth and said: “Young master Tianheng, please tell me what instructions previous pharmacists have told you. Also, please tell me about any aches and pains you’ve developed this past year.”
If he can’t get a clear understanding of his illness, how was he supposed to treat it?
Gongyi Tianheng was very cooperative.
Over many years, he had to fumble through this process many times, so now he explained in great detail.
In fact, this illness was a very strange one. When he was born, it seemed like he was a normal infant. Besides his high intelligence, there were no other peculiarities. After his first birthday, the Clan members discovered that his meridians were very weak and fragile.
One should know that becoming a martial artist depended on the apt.i.tude of a person’s meridians. Through the process of cultivation, the qi energy of heaven and earth would enter the body and then circulate through the meridians. Naturally, the larger and st.u.r.dier the meridians, the greater the amount of qi energy that can be absorbed, and the faster the cultivation.
Beyond expectations, Tianheng’s meridians were indeed thin and weak — don’t even consider absorbing the qi of heaven and earth, when taking medicine, too much would cause the meridians to rupture.
These qualifications made it impossible to practice martial arts. And yet, with the Gongyi Clan’s vast resources, so long as they found enough precious medicinal pills, the meridians would slowly improve… And where were these pills?
Gu Zuo was a little baffled.
If the meridians were weak, but didn’t affect his ordinary life, then he wouldn’t go so far as to consider him sickly…
Tianheng’s words continued, thoroughly smashing Gu Zuo’s a.s.sumptions.
Really, his patron’s problem stemmed not only from his weak meridians, but also from a genuine mystery-disease.
After the Clan concluded that Gongyi Tianheng’s meridians were beyond saving, due to his outstanding features, they didn’t really care too much. That was, until he turned ten. That year he suddenly loss sensation in both legs and was paralyzed. From a pharmacist’s diagnosis, they found the problem.
Besides Tianheng’s weakened meridians, after each pa.s.sing year, a meridian would develop a blockage.
At first his Eight Extraordinary Meridians  began to fail imperceptibly. Of course, they were independent of the primary qi flow of this body, and didn’t affect his life very strangely. Yet, when two of his Twelve Main Meridians  were blocked, all his afflictions revealed themselves, nearly leaving him paralyzed and bedridden.
In addition to allowing the qi energy of heaven and earth to circulate through the body while practicing martial arts, meridians served a greater function in people: circulating the blood and nourishing one’s vitality. If they were all blocked up, it was obvious as to what would happen.
And Gongyi Tianheng was already eighteen years old.
He still has two meridians that were unblocked. But at his twentieth year , the circulation of his qi and blood would stop and his life would end.
Gu Zuo heard this and his face immediately fell.
As it turned out, not only must he struggle to survive for this month, but his patron could only live for two more years! Moreover, even if Gu Zuo pa.s.sed this task, if his patron kicked the bucket, he still had to find another patron! Totally not fair!
Anyway, Gu Zuo was supremely depressed. When he looked at Tianheng, his expression was like a sinner looking upon the face of G.o.d.
As of right now, his patron was able to walk around. There was no telling how many medicinal pills were used nor how much effort was expended so that Tianheng could act like a normal person.
In fact, at that moment, every movement Tianheng made was very painful.
— Truly, it was about all he could endure.
But heroic pa.s.sion soon burst forth from Gu Zuo’s heart.
Thinking that his patron could suffer through so much hardship, how could he give up now? If he could cure his patron, Gu Zuo would cling tightly to his thigh and never let go .
Therefore, it was time for him to search through his three texts and seriously comb through every page to find those prescriptions that targeted Tianheng’s symptoms. Anything that matched his patron’s situation should also be looked at. Then, at the rear of the books where the case-studies and unusual illnesses were recorded, did they have anything…
Thinking clearly, Gu Zuo didn’t have any intentions of hiding his secret. Immediately, three ancient texts appeared on his palm. Holding onto > and >, Gu Zuo handed over > and said: “Young master Tianheng, look at this. Many illnesses are presented near the back of this book. We should both search through it and see if there are any that match your descriptions.”
He said that while opening up > and browsing the back.
Gongyi Tianheng watched as the three books appeared out of thin air and his pupils shrank.
A storage device?
This thing was extremely precious. The Cangyun country’s royal family only had three such storage devices. The Five Great Clans only had one each, kept in the safe keeping of the Clan head.
He didn’t expect that this little guy would actually have one.
But this thought only flashed by; Tianheng’s attention was focused on the ancient text in his hands.
This should have been the result of Gu Zuo’s “fortuitous meeting” and the reason why he dared come here and seize him… He hoped that what he needed was contained within.
Gongyi Tianheng quickly opened the book.
Across each sheaf of paper, his slender finger scrolled back and forth. Line for line, it gracefully flew across the pages.
On top of that, he firmly embedded every word in his mind.
However, to compare Tianheng’s lightning speed, even Gu Zuo’s progress appeared somewhat slow.
This matter concerned Gu Zuo’s fate and his patron’s life. He didn’t dare neglect a single detail. His observation was exceptionally meticulous. Anything that mentioned deadened meridians was picked out by him.
Simultaneously, he would read and write down notes one after another using a brush. His appearance was single-minded, and his heart was free of haste.
Gongyi Tianheng quickly finished reading and blinked a few times. The information from the ancient text flashed through his mind.
Gu Zuo’s circ.u.mstances were really out of the ordinary. To say the least, this > recorded an insane amount of medicinal pill types — based on the division on strength among martial artists…
There were 13,200 pills for Houtian martial artists,10,831 pills for Xiantian martial artists, and 8,691 pills for Tuofan “Immortal” martial artists.
Although it was widely known that each division in medicinal pills had over one thousand types, as far as he knew, all the pharmacists of Cangyun country were aware of only five hundred kinds of medical pill recipes — of all grades, not just a single grade.
Even if a pharmacist dedicated his whole life, he wouldn’t be able to refine all the recipes recorded in the >. He was deeply humbled by all the case-studies in the back of the book. Granted that he regarded himself exceedingly knowledgeable through ceaseless study, after looking through this book, he profoundly understood that his thinking was very shallow.
Suddenly, Gongyi Tianheng’s state of mind became very restless, and was forced to suppress it.
If he could practice martial arts…
Then he could travel the world, and he wouldn’t be forced to confine himself to the cage of Cangyun City!
 璨然 – Can ran, similar to 粲然一笑, to describe the brightness of a smile.
 没了月光的加成 – Mei le (to cease to exist, to vanish) yue guang (moonlight) de jia cheng (from a game perspective, the experience point modifier).
 龙一 – Long yi, instead of a name, this seems more like a designation. An equivalent would be like the American’s use of “Eagle One” and “Eagle Two.” Seems appropriate for a personal guard.
 十丈 – Shi zhang. One 丈 is about 3.3 meters, so I rounded ten zhang to thirty meters.
 奇经八脉 – Ji jing ba mai, the Eight Extraordinary Meridians. Formed at birth, they function as deep reservoirs from which the Twelve Main Meridians can be replenished.
 十二正经 – Shi er zheng jing, the Twelve Main Meridians. The meridians responsible for the bulk flow of qi through the body. For an overview of Gongyi Tianheng’s dilemma, when he was born he had weak meridians. As he grew up, with each pa.s.sing year, one by one his meridians would be blocked. Starting from the peripheral eight extraordinary meridians, there were no signs of illness. He would be eight years old at this time. However, once the blockages began appearing in the twelve main meridians, his body would be greatly affected. Thus at ten years old, two main meridians were blocked (likely corresponding to his legs, since they were paralyzed). Therefore, he is eighteen years old now and he has two main meridians left. Once he turns twenty, all his meridians would be blocked and he would die.
 及冠 – Ji guan, traditionally, a coming of age ceremony for a man who is twenty years old.
 抱大腿 – Bao da tui, literally to hug a big thigh. Metaphor for clinging to someone influential or famous to curry favor.
T/N: A quick poll. Who thinks I should keep using “Man-Level” or change it to “Human-Level”?
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