Chen Chang Sheng deeply cared about time.
Realizing that the one he had to marry was a phoenix, he continuously suffered humiliation and suppression from people with high positions. Even the royal palace appeared…..If he was a normal youngster, he probably already would feel extremely depressed or have some mental traumas, but he did not have time to feel upset. He did not have time to get angry because the thing he lacked the most was time.
When he sees a goal, Chen Chang Sheng is the type to go for it without hesitation. He would not think back and forth and he did not need to shout out, but he simply stayed determined and insisted on competing for time.
His current goal right now was to obtain the first place on the Great Trial in a year.
To him who still did not successfully purify, this goal was truly too far away. Yesterday after he announced his goal in inn, even the most arrogant and narcissistic Tang Thirty Six was completely wordless. Although others would think the goal to be a dream, Chen Chang Sheng did not change his mind at all, but instead cherished every second because he knew that this goal was very far away.
The Tradition Academy was broken and declined but so what? The buildings are conquered by green ivies and the stones from them are about to fall off but so what? Chen Chang Sheng didn’t care and he didn’t have time to care. He determinedly and dedicatedly walked on his own path. He left the lakeside and walked deeper into the school. He was prepared to find people inside and start his school life immediately….
After half an hour, he stood in the court alone. The entire ground was filled with wild grasses. He could faintly hear insects humming, but there was only him looking around blankly.
He did not find a single soul in the academy. Previously he thought that no matter how broken and deserted The Tradition Academy was, it had at least some teachers or even a janitor. But how could one anticipate that after he searched the entire school, not to talk about man’s shadow, he could not even see any traces proving that people had came here recently.
There used to be a majestic teaching building behind the center garden of the Classical Teaching, but now it was all in ruins. Any structures above second floor were destroyed. Only half of the fountain and stone lion was left. A few green plants were growing out of the leftover of the stone lion and blossomed purple flowers, both beautiful and melancholic .
It clear to him that the ruin of the academy wasn’t due to the erosion of wind and rain nor the doing of time. There should’ve been a terrible battle ten or twenty years ago and the teaching building was in the radius of the fight. Chen Chang Sheng thought silently and shook his head. He headed for the relatively persevered building to the right.
That building was built with stone and wood and was about several yards tall. The stone wall was full of ivies and moss. The paint on the walls and windows were all gone. It looked extremely poor. There was a label on top of the stone stairs and it took him quite a while to recognize the words on it. He later determined that the building was probably a library.
He walked towards the window and looked into the building. Although the light was a little dim, he still observed the inside clearly. There were shelves upon shelves of books inside. Chen Chang Sheng was a little surprised because he didn’t expect that after years of neglect the Classical Teaching still had this many books. Even if the Tradition didn’t confiscated them, did the government not care as well?
Book was the first thing he touched in this world and the object that he was most familiar with. Books are just like milk to a baby for normal person as they are for him. He was naturally close to books because it could offer him spiritual comfort. – As he was looking at countless books through the window, mysteriously his negative mood turned a little upbeat.
He walked to the front door and was about to push in until he saw a bronze lock on the knob. The locket was grey and dull and it was some old relic. It was hard to tell how long the door was left undisturbed but the most important thing was that there was a powerful presence inside the locket.
Chen Chang Sheng thought there was a strong enchant in the locket.
No wonder after the Classical Teaching was left neglected for so many years, its storage of literature was still perfectly safe from thieves and bandits. After realizing this, his mood got even better. But he didn’t know how to open the locket because he didn’t have the key. He also didn’t know if there was still a key. Even if there was a key, where is it? Whose hand was it in?
He didn’t even know who to ask because there was no one in the academy to ask.
But he wasn’t bothered because even though he couldn’t enter no one could either. Following his previous path he walked towards the dorms of the academy. The dorms were consisted of dozens of small buildings and they were a big part of the campus. Everywhere tall greens and ivies were growing. Perhaps it was a nice environment back in the days, but now it’s kind of gloomy and dark.
He randomly chose a door and opened it. The first thing he experienced was the musty smell. He saw the dust and spider web and decided to break the window inside the room. He realized that it will be hard to clean and will take a long to organize. He shook his head and left. Chen Chang Sheng thought it would be a long time before he could to move from the tavern to here.
Standing on the stone path outside of the small building and looking at the dense forest covering the sun and sky, he heard the chirping of the insects and birds. He felt the gloomy setting of the dark forest and felt that the truth was lost in time. Chen Chang Sheng slowly closed his eyes.
Ten or twenty years ago, countless talented young students were walking on the stone path shoulder to shoulder or sitting on the chairs together. Sometimes there would be clashing of swords in the forest. Everywhere was filled with the chanting of the Scroll of the Way. Sometimes laughter could be heard from the small buildings behind him. From far away, the sound of the bell from the royal palace could be heard and the students were running happily with bowls in their hands.
He opened his eyes and all of these scenes vanished. The only things left were the lonely forest and the small buildings that had been destroyed.
The Classical Teaching was located in the very center of the capital and was the neighbor of the royal palace but it had been forgotten by the entire world.
The once happy and glorious place was gone. The laughter and chatting was no where to be found. There was only him standing alone in the forest.
He suddenly felt sad but it was only for a short duration. This feeling quickly vanished from within him.
He felt nice here, if he could see those images once again.
Chen Chang Sheng was able to see the peak of the Classical Teachings. He was able to see the talented young students and the images from the past. It’s not because he had some special abilities or because he was daydreaming, it was because he read literatures and stories about this academy.
He pulled down the ivies from the stone walls of the academy and saw the label “Classical Teaching”. Many records of the Scroll of the Way flashed into his head and transformed into actual information. These information became images which were carved into his brain. Chen Chang Sheng suddenly realized he actually knew a lot about the history and events of this school.
It was not complicated or hard for Chen Chang Sheng. If he could remember the most insignificant note in the Law of the Heavenly Academy and the complex military rule of the Starseeker Academy, then it’s only natural that he also remembered some history and legacy of the Classical Teaching. The Three Thousand Scroll of the Way contained too many information.
Maybe he was the only student of the Classical Teaching and maybe, as Madam Ning mentioned, it didn’t even have a teacher. But since he was going to start studying in the Classical Teaching, then he must start working. For example, he needs to obtain the key to the library. He needs to request for fundings. – He remembered very clearly, the Zhou government gave every school educational fundings. If the academy exist, then the funding will be given yearly. The Starseeker obtain their share through the military while the Classical Teaching receive their share from the Department of Traditional Education.
The lucky thing was, the key and name list of the Classical Teaching should also be stored and saved there.
Chen Chang Sheng left the Classical Teaching and followed the instruction on the map. Not for long, he arrived at the Department of the Traditional Education – it was a relatively unnoticeable building. There were only thirty steps of stone stairs in front of it. Although the columns were very tall, they were still very unnoticeable because there were dozens of evergreen planted outside of the building and covered the whole scene up.
No matter how bright the daylight was, it was hard to light up everything inside.
The department of traditional education’s entrance had very little people. After a long time, a priest wearing black robe would occasionally pass by. Chen Chang Sheng walked up the staircase and felt a bit strange. Then he noticed that behind the building there was a very crowded place. Many people were chatting about something there.
Walking into the department of traditional education, he found the related officers and said “I want to get student roster and key.”
“What student roster and key?”
That officer murmured with his eyes slightly narrowed. His face was chubby and contemptuous, but not to look down instead simply because he almost fell asleep in the spring wind dreaming about something fantastic.
Chen Chang Sheng increased his volume and said, “The Tradition Academy’s student roster and key.”
The officer slowly opened up his eyes, yawned, walked to the window, and washed his face. Finally having a clearer mind, he walked back to the desk and looked at Chen Chang Sheng irritated. He took out files from the drawer and said “Say your school’s name again.”
This time, Chen Chang Sheng paid more attention on pronunciation and said with a clear articulation and a mellow and full tone, “The Tradition Academy.”
That officer did not even think. He felt that this name was completely strange. He stopped looking in the file, looked up at Chen Chang Sheng, frowned and said, “Since when does the capital have such school? Is it registered? Did it pay all the taxes? Who authorized it?”
“It’s not a new school, it’s The Tradition Academy.”
That officer frowned and thought for a while, feeling that he had heard this name before but couldn’t remember. In the past ten years, he had made countless contacts with various school in the capital, but he never heard a school named The Tradition Academy….Suddenly, he remembered.
Chen Chang Sheng did not know what happened.
That officer said with a slightly cold voice “Are you joking?”
Chen Chang Sheng felt a bit strange, thinking that what kind of jokes are you trying to make?
That officer stood up suddenly, heavily pat the desk and shouted, “Do you think this is a place for jokes??!!!”
Chen Chang Sheng wanted to say something but didn’t get a chance.
That officer angrily scolded: “Which school are you from! How dare you make fun of teachers!”
Chen Chang Sheng said innocently: “I am really a student of The Tradition Academy.”
That officer looked at him as if he was staring at an idiot and said, “Lie, keep lying.”