feigning madness without becoming insane
Hide behind the mask of a fool, a drunk, or a madman to create confusion about your intentions and motivations. Lure your opponent into underestimating your ability until, overconfident, he drops his guard. Then you may attack.
Kuangai county, a small southern mountain.
On a forested mountain, among the depths of the forest, where there was complete silence, three horsemen appeared. They broke the local silence, which is why at times in the bushes, animals and birds were frightened.
In the forest, in shadow, stood one pavilion, inside of which was a Stella that protected from rain and wind. There was an inscription on the Stella, which had already eroded by time. * Monastery of the southern hill *.
Song Yang Qing, Xiu Yi Tian, and Cheng Gui Shuo stopped the horses and looked at the inscription on the monastery. And when they made sure they arrived at the right place, Song Yang Qing raised his head and began to look around. A little higher, he saw winding steps leading to the top. Among the dense forest was a building with rounded corners of the roof. It must have been a monastery. Song Yang Qing gave a sign, and Xiu Yi Tian headed forward, freeing his horse. Song Yang Qing followed him, and Cheng Gui Shuo closed the detachment.
The peak of the top of the monastery resembled a castle of ancient times. And just before the doors of the temple, a young monk swept the ground. As soon as three people got off their horses, he went forward:
"Three gentlemen, it has already darkened. I do not know…"
Song Yang Qing squinted at him and, ignoring him, pushed him away. Xiu Yi Tian and Cheng Gui Shuo, pulling the horses, entered the monastery. That monk quickly ran into the monastery and reported the rest.
Very quickly, more than ten monks with batons ran out and blocked the way for three riders. Each monk was gray-haired and looked rather poor.
Song Yang Qing took a bag from his belt and threw it to the monks.
There was a ringing of coins. There seemed to be a lot of coins. Why the monks looked at each other with shocked glances.
"Money for candles. Get us a restroom and feed the horses." Song Yang Qing said indifferently.
"It turns out that these are virtues!" - the monk ran out of the palace. He waved his hand to the other monks to drop sticks.
"During this hectic time, many bandits appeared on the mountain. Therefore, when we saw the gentlemen breaking into the temple, we immediately thought that you were enemies. It turns out we were wrong. Please come inside." - That monk was pointing to the living room.
Three cultivators no longer pulled the horses behind them, because others began to look after them. And armed monks began to lift coins from the floor.
"Are you the head of this monastery?" "Song Yang Qing, who was holding his hands behind his back, asked.
"No, no. Poor monk Ru Huwei is only the head of the eastern courtyard." - politely Ru Huwei answered. He began to fawn in front of Song Yang Qing, as in front of a sponsor.
Song Yang Qing looked askance at him. "Let the head come and visit me."
Ru Hwei shook his head. "Unfortunately, the head went to visit some friends and will only be back tomorrow!"
It's already night, so Song Yang Qing and others stayed overnight in the living room.
Not much time passed before the fire was extinguished. Two young monks brought alms (food) and then left.
Xiu Yi Tian looked at the food. It was pretty simple. Rice with vegetables in the broth. Xiu Yi Tian took out a porcelain flask and poured some white powder into the cauldron. And taking a spoon, he began to interfere. Over time, the food darkened, which is why Xiu Yi Tian said with a sigh, "Brothers!"
Song Yang Qing and Cheng Gui Shuo came up and wondered. Food is poisoned. Who knew that monks looking so grateful would do that.
"A bunch of bald monks!" Cheng Gui Shuo gritted his teeth and was about to deal with the monks.
Song Yang Qing stopped him with his hand and, having gathered everyone, began to whisper.
After that, Xu Yi Tian poured the soup into a corner, then tidied up the table. Then, looking at each other, three people fell to the ground and did not move.
After half an hour, in one corner, through a gap, someone spied on the situation inside the living room. A little later, behind the living room, there was the sound of footsteps. Two monks with clubs entered inside, and behind them was an old monk of short stature, thin, with dark skin and a long gray beard. This monk was rather hunchbacked, but a light burned in his eyes. This was the head of the monastery Yuan Fang.
One student came up and lit the cauldron:
"The bowls are empty."
Looking at the people lying on the ground, the head of the western courtyard, Ru Min, folded his arms, said:
"Delinquent, delinquent. Head, we killed people again!"
Head Yuan Fang sighed:
"In this troubled age, ordinary people cannot take care of themselves, and of course, can not care about the temple. And the monastery of the southern mountain is so far from the city, in remote places. Who wants to come here at such a time and make donations? How, then, shall we be? We need to hold out for several years, and then I can definitely restore the temple in the city, and then the alms to us will increase. Then we don't need to do that.
"Ah ..." a few monks sighed.
Ru Huwei waved his hand, and several young monks approached the three men.
But who knew that one monk would suddenly cry out:
Xiu Yi Tian quickly kicked him, that he flew off, knocking down the others of the way.
Song Yang Qing quickly stood up, grabbed a monk by the stick, and said with a grin:
"A bunch of crooks in the pursuit of wealth!"
After what was said, he struck that monk. Then he quickly grabbed the sword that was behind him and pulled it in front of him.
In an instant, three swords flickered in space, and the monks with batons began to retreat. In a moment, a lot of blood was flowing. The monks could not resist them at all. Only the head Yuan Fang opposed them, waving a staff and allowing the rest of the monks to escape.
"It is scum, evil!" Song Yang Qing grinned.
Yuan Fang was not an opponent of Song Yang Qing and the rest. Except for brute force, he possessed weak cultivation. He plainly could not answer the blow.
But what surprised was how much Yuan Fang's clothes had already been ripped, but it didn't seem to bring damage to Yuan Fang himself. It looks like he was wearing armor. Otherwise, he would have died a long time ago. Under the clothes, one could already see something fleecy. And when they already cut through his clothes well, a metallic sound came from the sword.
However, three people could not cut Yuan Fang. They could only pierce him. But it was difficult. Yuan Fang, in turn, was already dripping by blood. After several sword attacks, blood was already flowing over his skin.
Several people fought, and their battle moved into the yard. Song Yang Qing gave a sign, and Xiu Yi Tian and Cheng Gui Shuo stopped fighting. Three people with frightened faces surrounded Yuan Fang.
It seems that all the monks of the monastery fled here. Only those who had already been killed by Song Yang Qing and the others did not come running, and there were more than 10 of them. Now, as a result, more than 20 monks stood at a distance from three students. They were obviously afraid to approach the experienced Song Yang Qing and others, but they could not even retreat.
Yuan Fang, bleeding, took the staff and began to twirl it. He viciously looked at three people.
"Do you want to live or die?" Song Yang Qing asked in a cold tone.
Yuan Fang gritted his teeth: "If you want to live, then let me go."
Song Yang Qing:
"Of course, but you need to complete the work for me. Only obediently obey me, and you will be able to open the monastery in the city. I will help you with this. I can also ask the ruling house to issue you an official certificate. Otherwise, such evil spirits wherever they run away, they can always be found. And the demon killers will not let you go!"
Song Yang Qing took out a tablet and showed it.
When Yuan Fang saw the hieroglyphs on the tablet, his pupils clenched ...
After some time, the monks already cleaned the troupes of their people.
And Song Yang Qing and others had already entered another cleaner room. Then came the just bandaged Yuan Fang. Three students only now saw, like metal wool on it, and realized that it was an unformed spirit, not a hermit.
Looking at Yuan Fang carefully putting new clothes on his wounded body, Song Yang Qing could not restrain himself and asked:
"As I know, this monastery has long been standing. And how could the crowd of monks make evil spirits the head of the monastery?"
Three people were surprised by this fact.
Yuan Fang answered bitterly smiling:
"I'm not the head Yuan Fang ..."
And when he told everything, Song Yang Qing and others understood everything.
It turns out that the real Yuan Fang passed away two years ago. And he turns out to be a bear, which the monks picked up 200 years ago near the monastery. Perhaps since he always heard the teachings of the Buddha, a spirit gradually arose in him. And he learned the technique of absorbing the spiritual qi of heaven and earth. As a result, the bear began to cultivate gradually. And when he had already embarked on the path of a cultivator, he was transformed precisely into the head Yuan Fang. Only his cultivation was not enough, so he transformed into a person with a defect.
As he said earlier, in the troubled time, the temple on the southern mountain began to be reduced. And when there was the head, Yuan Fang, he somehow from the outside got food and livelihood of the temple. But as soon as he died, hard times came. And the head of the monastery was just appointed Yuan Fang. Only this young man, to fulfill the desire of the mentor, went the wrong way. He began in the pursuit of wealth to kill people.
Moreover, he gathered students and robbed people on the road. That's how their monastery was going through times. However, some students left the monastery without saying a word. They did not understand how, being the Buddhist monastery, such things could be done. So half of the monks left, and Song Yang Qing and the rest killed some more.
"In fact, I did a lot of good things. In the vicinity, how many gangsters and robbers were here, I interrupted them with the monks. If one gangster appears, then I will kill one gang. Those gangsters are disgusting scoundrels. They kill and rob people and take women with them. And for them, it doesn't matter - poor or rich. I rob only the rich and, at times, transfer the things to the villages in the neighborhood. And now all the neighborhoods are cleansed of bandits, and the villages live in peace. Nobody locks a house. Even if they don't know that this is the monastery on the southern mountain did for them, they still certainly won't speak badly of us." Yuan Fan strongly emphasized this point. He wanted to be thought of as the right person.
Song Yang Qing and others were in surprise. They were astounded by the actions of this head of the monastery. Yes, it looks more like the head of a gang.