The Great Worm Lich Chapter 31
When the lady in red was teaching her junior sister a lesson, Zhang Lisheng who had no idea that he was in luck and escaped another trouble had gotten into the crowd and climbed up the long stairs with his wizard worm on his back long ago. He was wandering around the Qingyang Palace with his mother.
The Hunyuan Hall which worshipped the Taiqing Daode Tianzun occupied a wide space of 26 stone columns with the carving of mountain deers, phoenixes, black tortoises, and more spiritual creatures. All of them looked realistic.
The Eight-diagram Pavilion was built on a high-rise platform where the entire thing was joint with mortise and tenon without any wedges or bolts. There was a glazed gourd treasure tripod who stood tall all the way to the pavilion ceiling. The design was simply exquisite.
Apart from that, was the Hall of Three Purities with the most worship statues, the Doulao Hall with the sculpture that looked the most like a female Buddha and the ginormous three platforms in the backyard. These unprecedented cultural landscapes made the young man from a mountain village of limited knowledge to indulge himself.
However, as he stepped into the last courtyard of Qingyang Palace, Zhang Lisheng felt a jolt in his heart all of the sudden, while a piercing, pained sensation came up in his skin all over his body.
Noticing there was something wrong, he stood still immediately ignoring the fact that the crowd was squeezing each other behind him.
He looked around and eventually saw at the end of the courtyard, a wooden sign written with 'Dao follows what is natural' derived from the Dao De Jing before the Hall of Jade Emperor was a single-horned copper goat that was guarding the palace door staring at him maliciously.
The glare really came from the copper goat. In the spur of blankness, all Zhang Lisheng could feel was the copper goat with a rat's ear, cattle's nose, tiger's paws, rabbit's back, dragon's horns, snake's tail, horse's mouth, goat's beard, monkey's neck, chicken's eyes, dog's belly, and pig's rump was getting bigger and bigger.
Eventually, it grew to a size that was similar to the Hall of Jade Emperor that was behind it with its mouth opened wide and sharp teeth showing. It seemed like it was going to devour Zhang Lisheng in one gulp.
Under the force of the single-horned copper goat, Zhang Lisheng frowned and clenched his teeth, without him realizing it. The wizard power in his blood began to flow automatically, while Mountoad which was in his backpack shook its body and faintly releasing a breathing sound for the first time, in the circumstance of not being driven by incantation.
"Baby, what's wrong? Are you not feeling well?" Lili who was next to Zhang Lisheng, asked loudly when she saw her son stood still out of nowhere and soon began to clench his teeth as his whole body was shaking with no reason.
A high-decibel lady's voice was extremely ear-piercing even in a crowded and noisy environment. Moreover, the one who was clamoring was a foreigner.
The tourists in the courtyard were stunned and looked towards the place where the noise came from one after another. A few Westerner tourists among them walked towards them in big steps and asked in concern, "Ma'am, may I know if you need any help?"
"M-my son, h-he became like this all of the sudden while he was walking. I don't I don't know why he became li-like this" Lili proceeded to shout in panic, "Doctor, is there any doctor here?"
"Oh God, the merciful God. I beg for your gospel, is there any doctors here"
The foreign tourists who came up to them first looked at each other and shook their heads one after another in regret and concern.
At that moment, a big Chinese man with a beard all over his face came out of the crowd and shouted at Lili as well as the tourists around with his fluent Mandarin with a mix of stammering English, "Please give them some space."
"This kid must be having epilepsy, we must give him enough space to breathe."
"Ma'am, I'm not a doctor. But I'm studying a master's degree in clinical nursing at the Western Sichuan Medical University."
"Does your kid... your son has epilepsy, asthma or medical history of other neurological diseases?"
"If... I mean if he does, did you guys bring the emergency medicine of these types of diseases?"
Although clinical nursing was training nurses instead of doctors,this young man who looked more like a robber rather than an intellectual, was a master's degree holder from a medical school after all. Under his call, soon the tourists made a wide space for Zhang Lisheng and Lili.
Regarding the questions that the bearded man had raised, Lili who was in the middle of the space stammered panicky and embarrassedly, "I I-I-I don'tI-I"
Naturally, the bearded man did not know that this lady who looked like she cared for her son to her bones had just reunited with her child for less than 24 hours. He thought that her brain was not functioning anymore, due to her nervousness.
"Don't panic, Ma'am. Breathe, no, take a deep breath."
"Your kid is alright. Let me help him remove his backpack and loosen his collar to improve his breathing condition" Since the bearded man could not get anything informational from the patient's mother, he extended his hand onto Zhang Lisheng's backpack while comforting Lili.
"Stop right there!" A loud scream came from far away. Soon, the tourists who surrounded the space felt a flash before their eyes. Suddenly, a young lady who had arched brows and bright eyes wearing sports attire appeared in the space out of nowhere. She blocked the bearded man's arm.
The medical master degree student was stunned like he was having an illusion. He said blankly, "L-Lady, wh-where did you come from? I-I'm saving him. D-Don't"
The young lady was the lady with arched brows who had the intention to kill Zhang Lisheng at the Qingyang Palace entrance. Hearing the bearded man's gullible words, she smiled coldly and said with a mean, low voice, "Saving him? Hmph, you should save your worthless life first."
"If I didn't want this Taoism palace of a thousand years to be tarnished, I would love to see you idiot being kindly eaten by an evil spirit."
As the young lady with arched brows was getting everybody's attention, her senior sister, the lady in red, had arrived casually before the single-horned copper goat that was guarding the Hall of Jade Emperor.
She then chanted a passage silently, "We're doing this in the event of an emergency, please do not take offense." The lady in red then waved her hands and two black talismans appeared in her hands. She then pasted the talismans onto the goat's eyes and wrote 'A wise head keeps a closed mouth' in seal script in the air.
As the seal scripts appeared out of thin air, the talismans that were pasted on the copper goat's eyes began to burn themselves and turned into ashes before vanishing. At the same time, Zhang Lisheng felt an image of darkness before his eyes and he came back to reality.
He looked blankly at the crowd around him and asked Lili after shaking his head, "Mother, what happened?"
Seeing that her son had gotten back to normal, Lili shouted in surprise, "You're alright, my baby! Thank you, God! H-how are you feeling now? You gave me a great scare just now"
"It should be the both of you who scared us. Your son released a worm to harm others, it won't harm himself anyway." The young lady with arched brows pouted and pointed at Zhang Lisheng's head without touching him while speaking in fluent English, "Little gringo, this is not your territory. If you're wandering in China, people like you should be smart and don't wander around as you wish."
Hearing the young lady saying words like 'released worm to harm others', Lili's expression that was combined with panic and glad was now completely pale.
She staggered and blocked in front of Zhang Lisheng with her wobbly body and boasted to the young lady with arched brows while glaring at her, "Miss, are you being racist to my child right now?"
"As an American, I respect China's long history but at the same time, I think that everyone is born equal where nationalities shouldn't matter"
"Alright, alright. Stop nagging, this mother from America. I'm not here to offend you but just a kind reminder to your son that this is a Western Sichuan ancient land, not the rising Shanghai or the Yellow Sea."
"The grass and the trees here might have a history of their own. It's better that you stay in the new city area if you've got a unique identity." The young lady with arched eyebrows waved her hands and vanished after a few turnings among the crowd.
The accident came to no end. Since there was nothing to see anymore, the tourists soon went back into their thick travel mood. Everything went back to normal.
The only one left was the enthusiastic bearded man stammered and gesturing while he reminded, "Ma'am although the season is late autumn now, but in a place that's crowded and stuffy, like this place, there's a possibility to experience heat stroke."
"Especially your child, looks, very small, no, he's very skinny"
"Thank you, sir, you can speak Mandarin. Did you say that my child might be experiencing heat stroke?" Lili's eyes lit up and asked loudly.
The bearded man was stunned and said while forcing a smile, "Ma'am, you speak much better Mandarin than me speaking English."
"Yes, your child seems like he has a weak body. He seemed to be experiencing epilepsy earlier but since he did not have foaming in his mouth and recovered himself all of the sudden, the biggest possibility would be the beginning stage of a heat stroke."
"It's better that you get him to a place with good ventilation to rest. Drink more water, salt water would be best."
"Thank you, thank you so much for your help." Lili thanked him with sincere gratitude.
"We Chinese has an old saying of 'Satisfaction derived from helping others'. Goodbye."
After the bearded man left, Lili's heart was filled with insecurity, while her face revealed hesitation and uncertainty like there was something that she wanted to ask Zhang Lisheng. However, she ended up saying gently, "Baby, the kind man who helped just now was right."
"Too many things happened in the past two days. Perhaps you haven't gotten used to it, you should take a rest. Let's go back to the hotel okay?"
Zhang Lisheng who had questions filled his head nodded and followed Lili walking out of the Qingyang Palace slowly.
The mother and son hailed a taxi on the street. The taxi headed straight towards the Golden Dragon Hotel and stopped at its entrance.
After returning to the hotel Room B4506, Lili has gotten Zhang Lisheng to lie straight on the couch in the living room, while she ran into the bathroom. She dipped a towel into cold water and wiped her son's face and chest.
Later on, she made a phone call hastily and ordered room service. She also specially asked the staff to get a big bowl of salt water.
Seeing his mother running around taking care of him, Zhang Lisheng could not get used to that at all and said, "Mother, I'm fine now. You don't have to worry about me."
"You need to watch out, even if you're feeling fine. Baby, I supposed you've never experienced epilepsy or asthma before?"
Although Zhang Lisheng's English was good, he had yet to master an uncommon medical terminology such as epilepsy and asthma. He could not help himself but ask, "Huh?" blankly.
"Epilepsy and asthma," Lili explained in Mandarin.
"No, mother. I might look skinny, but my body is pretty strong."
"You forgot about our promise, which is to speak in English." Lili had a sudden change of expression and unnecessarily said it nervously.
"I'm sorry, mother."
"Listen to me, baby. We're flying to New York after staying in Chengdu for one more day. I need you to promise me that you won't speak even a sentence in Mandarin, until the very last day. Can you promise me that?"
Zhang Lisheng opened his mouth and seemed like he wanted to ask why. 'Ding dong, ding dong', the doorbell came from the door at that moment.