Jing Yi followed her advice and didn’t think about it any longer for the time being, instead focusing on his food. When they finished, he went back with the others and waited until Si Fen called them over to help with transporting the goods to the first seller.
They were busy for the rest of the day and only returned when the sky was already getting dark. Jing Yi crawled back into bed, feeling too tired to worry about anything else. He thought of Qiu Ling briefly but then drifted off into sleep soon enough.
When he woke up the next morning, it was still dark outside. He sat up in bed and rubbed his eyes, blinking a few times to try and wake himself up. It probably wouldn’t be long before they had to go and eat and then start into the next day.
Jing Yi’s guess was exactly right. It only took a few more minutes until the other three got up as well and soon enough, one of the people from the inn knocked on the door, calling them to come and eat.
The four of them went down and once again, Si Fen waved Jing Yi over to come over to her. He said goodbye to the others and then hurried over, sitting down next to her when she motioned at the chair. “Good morning.”
She gave Jing Yi a smile and rubbed his head. “I hope you slept well. Today, we’ll have a lot to do. That person I told you about is also the guest of one of the people we’re going to see today. I’ve agreed to meet with him later in the afternoon so I want you to help out until then and after that, you can stay there and take care of your own matters. What do you think?”
Jing Yi nodded. “Of course. Thank you again for —”
“Yes, yes, yes, yes. I know already. You don’t have to say it anymore. You’re very grateful that I’ve been helping out so much and you really don’t know how to repay me so you’ll at least work hard and all of that. It’s alright. I know it and I feel like it’s the right thing to do. It was my decision so there’s no need to obsess over it.
“Anyway, it’s on you to secure going with that person’s guest. If they don’t agree, then I can’t help you either. You’ll have to get by on your own.” She was a little worried about him but there was nothing she could do so she could only tell him things as they were.
Jing Yi nodded again. “I’ll do my best.”
“I bet that you’ll do that.”
They didn’t say anything else anymore and just rushed to eat before everybody moved out to bring the goods over to the first seller.
Just as Si Fen had said, they were busy the whole morning and early afternoon. They didn’t even have time to eat lunch in between and just rushed from one place to the other, getting goods off the carts and then lifting others onto them, before moving everything to the next place and then the next one.
By the time they arrived at the place that Si Fen had mentioned, Jing Yi was already covered in sweat and his breath came ragged puffs. He would have liked nothing more than to take a break and wash up to get rid of the sweat but he knew that he couldn’t do that. He had to make sure that he paid Si Fen back and also left a good impression on whoever it was that might be able to take him along. After all, he still had nothing to give other than his own ability to work. If he came across as a lazy person who wouldn’t lift a finger or couldn’t take some hardships, then that person might say no from the get-go. He didn’t want that to happen.
Si Fen first dealt with her business and then told everyone to go sit down and take a break while she called Jing Yi over to talk with the other merchant.
“This is the boy I told you about. His name is Jing Yi.”
Jing Yi bowed to the man, feeling a little nervous. “Thank you very much for agreeing to meet with me.”
The man rubbed his chin, looking him over. “Well, he looks like he’s a hard-working person and really just as young as you said. I guess I’d feel bad if I didn’t at least ask that guest if he’d be willing to take him along.” The man turned back to Si Fen and nodded at her. “Very well, I’ll take him with me then and you can go and take care of everything else you need to.
“You know I can’t guarantee for anything though. If that guest decides against it, I’ll send the boy back to that inn where you’re currently staying. You’ll probably be there for another few days, won’t you? Then he can still help you out a bit while deciding what else to do.”
“Very well. Then we’ll do it that way.” She turned to Jing Yi and patted his shoulder. “Good luck. I guess that your chances aren’t that bad. Just give it your best shot and it’ll likely work out. And if it doesn’t, it won’t be the end of the world. There’s always another way.”
“I’ll do that. Thank you for your guidance.”
Si Fen laughed, and hurriedly bid farewell to the two of them before Jing Yi could start another round of thanking her. She had really heard that more than enough in the past few days.
When Si Fen was gone, the merchant turned to Jing Yi and gave him a smile so he wouldn’t be too nervous. “Boy, did Madam Si already tell you about what kind of person my guest is?”
Jing Yi shook his head. “No, she didn’t. She only said that it was somebody who was traveling a lot.”
“Mn, that’s about right. You have to know, this person isn’t a common one. He’s actually one of the people from those deity sects.”
Jing Yi’s eyes widened when he heard that. Somebody from a deity sect? So … Somebody like the disciples of the Yun Zou Sect? It wouldn’t happen to be somebody from his own sect, would it? That would be a little too coincidental.
The man laughed when he saw his expression. “That’s right. The person you’re going to meet is actually such a bigshot. You should better behave well when you see him.”
Jing Yi nodded. It was a matter of course that he would behave well in front of a stranger. Especially so if the stranger was one that was hopefully going to do him a favor. If he didn’t, then he would’ve brought the negative answer onto himself. Jing Yi pondered for a moment and finally couldn’t help but inquire further. “The sect this person is from … you wouldn’t happen to know which one it is?”
He didn’t have high hopes considering that most people didn’t even know the difference between cultivators and practitioners and just called all of them Daoists. If anything, they’d only know a sect if it was close by and appeared regularly in their town. To his surprise, the man straightened up and nodded though.
“But of course! You won’t believe this but this person is actually a disciple of one of the few demon-hunting sects. It’s called the ‘Chun Feng Sect’. You might have heard of them!”