Chapter 197: Apprenticeship
He left Lan Ling’s notebook in his bedroom. Yang Ming planned to return to her during the next holiday. Now he had a more important thing to do.
Yang Ming looked at the time, and it was about the time to visit Fang Tian. Yang Ming was full of excitement and admiration. The King of Assassins! That was such an impactful and cool name!
Yang Ming didn't drive today instead he went there by train. It wasn't that Yang Ming didn’t want to drive, but he was afraid that Zhang Bing would suspect something if he went out too frequently with Zhang Bing’s car.
So Yang Ming decided to buy a car quickly. It would be inconvenient for him not to have one.
Dong Jun had already arrived by the time Yang Ming came to Fang Tian’s house. Dong Jun nodded to Yang Ming. “Junior apprentice, you’re here.”
“Junior apprentice?” Yang Min sweated. “Such a term is so ambiguous. It sounds like Zhu Bajie .”
“Ha, you have a pretty active imagination.” Dong Jun laughed, “Master has been waiting for you in the house.”
“Alright. I never thought that you are the disciple of Uncle Fang!” Yang Ming laughed.
“Uncle Fang?” Dong Jun was astounded. “How can you be so impudent to Master?”
“Since it’s a habit then never mind.” They heard the bright voice of Fang Tian after Dong Jun spoke. “Yang Ming, you can be impudent to me. But you can’t be impudent to the grand master. The ritual for apprenticeship later is my retirement ritual too. It means the previous generation will retire and the next generation will arise.”
“Is it that formal?” Yang Ming didn’t know the tradition of one to one teaching had so many rules, but he still said with obedience, “Alright, I understand.”
Inside the house, everything was prepared. The incense burner table was set up on an old Eight Immortals table. There was a portrait on it. The window curtains were pulled closed too. Fang Tian said to Yang Ming, “Yang Ming, come over here.”
Yang Ming didn’t dare to show any disregard since the mood was solemn. He followed Fang Tian’s instruction and walked toward him in a good manner.
“Kneel down.” Fang Tian pointed at the small rush cushion  in front of the incense burner table. Yang Ming immediately knelt down. Fang Tian only spoke softly after a long while, “To the Grand Master, the fourth generation of assassins, Wang Fangtian, will be retired from now on and I will pass the legacy to Yang Ming. He will become the fifth generation of the King of Assassins.”
As he spoke, Fang Tian bowed and said to Yang Ming, “Bow three times.”
Yang Ming followed the instructions and kowtowed three times.
“Alright, you can get up now.” Fang Tian nodded his head and asked Yang Ming to stand up.
Yang Ming sighed a relief. Luckily the procedure wasn’t that complicated.
“You will address me as master and Dong Jun as senior apprentice in the future.” Fang Tian said lightly, “Of course, you can address me as uncle if you’re not used to it. It’s just a name. If you graduate as an assassin, you will have different names to cover your true identity.”
Next, Dong Jun naturally had to avoid Fang Tian and Yang Ming when Fang Tian started to teach Yang Ming his lessons. Although Dong Jun was Fang Tian’s first apprentice, there could only be one King of Assassins.
After Dong Jun left, Fang Tian said lightly, “Show me your strength. Hit me now.”
“Huh?” Yang Ming didn’t want to bluff, but his strength was real. He could lift a one hundred kg man with one hand. So it was obvious how strong he can be, and now Fang Tian was asking Yang Ming to hit him!
Yang Ming looked at Fang Tian’s skinny body shape and pondered, Can he withstand my punch? Yet, he still threw out a punch with half of his strength since Fang Tian looked confident.
Fang Tian grabbed his punch easily and said, “Is this your strength? Where is the power you had when you hit Yu Xiangde in the detention center? You didn’t eat dinner today?”
Yang Ming was agitated by Fang Tian. He wanted to pull his hand and hit again, but he astoundingly realized his hand was locked and couldn’t move! Yang Ming was shocked because he usually was the person who locked other’s arm, but today… it’s at this moment that Yang Ming truly realized that Fang Tian was a professional! Not only was he a rapid and skillful professional, but he also had his strength.
“Strength is the basic quality that an assassin should have, but it’s not the most important.” Fang Tian released Yang Ming’s hand and said flatly, “Most of the time, killing people doesn’t require any strength.”
“Which means my strength isn’t enough?” Yang Ming asked.
“For the current state, it is far from enough. I’m giving you another chance. Show me what you have.” Fang Tian shook his head.
Yang Ming didn’t hold back anymore. He threw a heavy punch toward Fang Tian, and yet Fang Tian still held his hand easily. He nodded his head. “Not bad, this punch is much stronger. The time for your training could be a lot shorter. At least it will be shorter than mine in those years.”
Yang Ming was relieved. It looked like he finally got the affirmation from Fang Tian.
“I have ten packets of Chinese medicine for you. Use it to soak your hands and legs every night.” Fang Tian pointed at the plastic bag on the floor. “Then, go hit a tree every morning after you wake up. Do it for ten days for more than three hours each time. Come and see me after ten days.”
“Ah? Is there any fist position or pattern?” Yang Ming asked curiously. It sounded like practicing recklessly!
“No need. My medicine will promote your bone development and protect your arms and legs to not get hurt.” Fang Tian said lightly, “After ten days, the tree’s meridians will burst and die. If it still lived, then maybe I have overestimated your potential.”
Meridians will burst? Why did it sound like the ”seven hurt punch” in the martial art novel? But Yang Ming didn’t question further. Fang Tian should have his reasons, so Yang Ming nodded. “I will put effort into it.”
“Alright, it’s late already. You should go back.” Fang Tian passed the Chinese medicine to Yang Ming. “Decoct for half an hour in a clay pot, then soak your arms and legs for one hour.”
Yang Ming went back to Song Jiang Industry University after he bid farewell to Fang Tian. Yang Ming really felt amazed as he simply helped two old men and these old men gave him such great benefits.
“What are you holding? Why does it smell like Chinese medicine?” Zhang Bing and Tian Donghua covered their nose as Yang Ming went back.
“My hands and legs have rheumatism so my dad’s friend prescribed me some Chinese medicine to soak my hands and legs.” Yang Ming made up some excuse on his train ride already. Zhang Bing and Tian Donghua would suspect what that was if he didn’t.
Zhang Bing and Tian Donghua lost their interest and kept watching TV when they heard it was for healing.
There was no kitchen in Yang Ming’s dorm. He only had the electric rice cooker that he bought with Chen Mengyan. So he used it to cook the medicine. Although it wasn’t as good as fire cooking, that was his only choice.
“F*ck, what is this thing?” Zhang Bing complained, “Quickly open the window. The smell of medicine is so strong! Are you trying to smoke us?”
“Just tell me if you want to die. Don’t be so nosy!” Yang Ming glared at him.
“Xu! Tian Donghua put his finger on his mouth and pulled Zhang Bing. “Be mindful of your voice. That guy is so strong. Aren’t you scared of being punched?”
“Ha!” Zhang Bing was amused. “He was joking just now. Can’t you even figure it out?”
“Ugh! That really scared the sh*t out of me!” Tian Donghua shook his head.
After he finished cooking, he didn’t filter the medicine dregs with gauze. After all, it was used to soak the hands and legs instead of drinking. So he poured it directly into a bucket and soaked inside his room.
The next day, Yang Ming woke up early. When the phone’s alarm rang, the sun had just risen. Yang Ming yawned then he hastily wore his clothes and left the dorm.
It was autumn; the sky was still dark. The students who did morning exercises hadn’t come out yet. Yang Ming walked toward the forest at the north side of the school. This was a wasteland bought by the school. There were few students here because there were no paths. It was the place for couples to have sex during the summer but it was only a rumor. Yang Ming was a freshman so he couldn’t verify it. But he was sure that there was no one there.
Yang Ming found a thick and solid tree with fewer scars on it. Then he started to punch it. One time, two times, three times… Yang Ming didn’t feel well at the beginning, but it was nothing after he got used to it.
The Chinese medicine was working. Yang Ming hands were just slightly red after punching with such great impact. They didn’t swell. He did feel pain, but it didn’t bother him much.
Three hours passed quickly. Yang Ming looked at his watch. It was 7 a.m. already. Although he didn’t think there would be anyone here, he was afraid that the security guard might patrol here.
Yang Ming didn’t want to be suspected, so he marked the tree and left quickly.
 Zhu Bajie is a senior apprentice too in “Journey to the West.”
 蒲团 - rush cushion -
Please write a review for our August Event! Maybe we'll create some extra accounts and write some ourselves haha!
And the assassin training begins!!! Find out what happens next! Support us with Patreon!
Chat with us on Discord!
Write a REVIEW and VOTE on Novel Updates! Tell other readers why you read SPSF!
Don't forget to Vote at Gravity Tales! We're coming close to 11th!
Many THANKS for all your votes and support! :)
If you like works from this author, Fishman II, Gravity Tales also features another one of his novels, Beauty and the Bodyguard, translated by Marcy and edited by Weirdo. Lin Yi is a disciple of Yang Ming. He knows martial arts, is a great cook and highly skilled herbal doctor and of course, has his own harem! Check it out!