Urban Tales of Demons and Spirits

Vol 1 Book of Thunder – Chapter 18 Ji Shi Tang

Translator:  MomoePom

Editor: Draygan

Quality Checker: Tezuka

First Published on Chaleuria.

 

Chapter 18 Ji Shi Tang

But at the moment, the little creature in front of me was so pitiful that I didn’t think too much about it. I took out a bottled water from my bag, poured some into the cap and handed it over to the white weasel. The little animal sniffed it a few times first, and after making sure it was not dangerous, it stuck out its tongue and started licking the water in the cap, issuing a seemingly pleased cry.

I poured the rest of the water on its head. It quickly shook its fur, called at me a couple times as if it was thanking me, then ran into the bush and disappeared in an instant.

What kind of animal was that? After thinking for a while, I still couldn’t figure out, so I just gave up. But saving an animal made my mood a lot better. I walked towards the hill behind the school, humming a song along the way.

The road leading to the old residence hadn’t changed. The weeds were still tall. I had to spend great effort parting them before I could take my first step.

If I were to come here often in the future, I should probably find a time to prune these weeds and make a road for myself.

Thinking about this and that in my head, unknowingly, that ancient old-style residence once again appeared in front of me. The residence didn’t change much, it stayed like when I came last time. The only difference was that I didn’t need to look for that mischievous cat this time, so I ended up having more time enjoying the surrounding scenery.

Like last time, after passing through the double doors, a big locust tree appeared in my field of vision. Coming around the locust tree, I arrived in front of the main house where Mr. Wen was.

I pushed open the wooden double doors, saying “Sorry to bother,” as I walked in.

“Mr. Wen? Are you there? I’m Gu Yu!”

No response came from inside, but some other strange voices did. Listening carefully, there were sounds of fighting as well as shouting, but I couldn’t hear clearly. It sounded like it had drifted over from afar.

My heart lurched, and I rushed into the inner room without thinking. “Mr. Wen! Mr. Wen, are you there? Did something happen?”

Wen Jiubo was lying on a long sofa, wearing a white long robe with his legs crossed. His long hair hung loosely in a mess, and he had an iPad in his hands. After a long while, he finally lifted his head. “Oh, Gu Yu. You’re here.”

I was completely stunned, my gaze shifted from Wen Jiubo’s face to his hands, then finally stopped on the iPad he was holding.

That’s right. All the fighting and shouting sounds I had just heard had come from this iPad.

My feelings of shame turned into rage. “What are you doing?!”

“Do you even need to ask?” Wen Jiubo raised the iPad in his hand for me to see. “King of Glory [1].”

I stared at Wen Jiubo, mouth agape, “So just now you were… playing a game?”

I couldn’t associate this person with online games at all.

“Yes.” Wen Jiubo put down the iPad, stretched, and then sat up. “Playing games helps a person’s mental and physical health. I just finished a business deal, so now is the time to recuperate.”

“Playing games is not what one calls ‘recuperating’!” I couldn’t restrain myself from retorting.

That being said, I still couldn’t help but to lean over and took a glance. However, from my glance, I found out that almost all of Mr. Wen’s heroes had max-level equips and rare items.

“The wealthy sure are wilful!” I said indignantly.

“That’s right,” Wen Jiubo didn’t show any signs of anger. Instead, he was actually smiling, “Therefore, a poor person like you has to work as a temp for someone rich like me. Do you understand?”

As he was talking, Wen Jiubo left the sofa and stood up, rubbed my nape like how one would caress a little animal and pushed me out of the room. “And as a temp, you shouldn’t come into your boss’s private office, do you understand?”

His words were so ridiculous that I didn’t even know where to start criticizing him. Who’s a temp worker?! And as a boss, you are doing nothing but playing games in your office!

“Alright, alright. Don’t look at me like that. The customers will arrive soon. Hurry up and go fill the prescriptions at the counter.” Wen Jiubo patted me on my back, and I staggered.

“W-wait a second. Filling prescriptions?” I was struck dumb. “Why do I need to fill prescriptions? I never heard about this!”

“Then what do you think I do?” Wen Jiubo replied lazily. He didn’t even bother to explain.

I became confused and asked, “Aren’t you an exorcist? Doesn’t the sign at the entrance say ‘House of Exorcism’?”

“That’s only one of my professions. In this current society, if I only earned money by performing exorcisms and conducting rites, then I would have starved to death a long time ago.” Wen Jiubo seemed like he was simply stating a matter of fact.

That seems to make sense… which means his other profession is ——

“Chinese pharmacy.” Wen Jiubo led me to a room in the front yard. Before we even entered, I could already smell the scent of medicines permeating the entire room. I looked up at the wooden plaque above the room, it said ‘Ji Shi Tang’ [2].

Like all traditional pharmacies, there was a huge wood cabinet that covered the entire wall with numerous little drawers, each tagged with a different name for various ingredients. Wen Jiubo readily pulled open a drawer. As he crushed the ingredient inside using his thumb and forefinger, he explained,

“This is where all my daily expenses come from. Even though I was slightly lacking during my studies, I’m still way better than those Chinese pharmacies on the street which anyone can open. Most of the customers come here to treat an illness or fill a prescription, which means your main job as my assistant will be to fill the prescriptions.”

“B-but… I’ve never studied Chinese medicine before, I don’t know how to fill a prescription!”

“The prescription has the weight listed for each ingredient. There’s a small weighing balance on the counter. Don’t tell me you can’t even count?” Before I could protest further, Wen Jiubo already gave me a slap on my back. “Customers are coming. Hurry up and go!”

I was about to say how impossible that was as I turned back my head, but there were really three girls bashfully walking in. They looked at each other, no one wanting to speak first.

“Well, may I ask if Mr. Wen…” With great difficulty, a slightly more extroverted girl opened her mouth to ask.

I couldn’t bear the scene anymore and pointed him to them, “He’s the one playing King of Glory there.”

Wen Jiubo didn’t even lift his head and just said, “Menstrual disorders, right?

The young girls all blushed at once and glanced at me in embarrassment. I said in my mind, How does that concern me? I’m just here to fill the prescriptions.

Wen Jiubo finally lifted his head this time. Perhaps he had just won a battle and was in a good mood, he glanced over at the three girls with a smile, then said to me,

“Gu Yu, fill the prescription. Poria 12g, Chinese yam 15g, Atractylodes 9g, Codonopsis 9g, medicated leaven 9g.”

I hurried to weigh the different ingredients he had just recited, but because it was my first time, I bumbled around and it took me a long time to wrap up those ingredients. Luckily though, no one scolded me.


Translator’s Notes:

[1] A popular mobile game in China nowadays.

[2] Names for Chinese pharmacies usually ends with “Tang”, which means hall. ‘Ji Shi Tang’ literally translated means ‘Helping the World Hall’.

 

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