Bull Devil was at a loss for words.
After a very long time, he finally asked, “Little… little sister, are you joking?”
“Who’s joking with you?” I quickly clarified my intentions and patted the bull’s butt. “It’s jingzhe. It’s time to start farming. Big brother is the world’s strongest bull, so plowing fields isn’t a big deal!”
“I’m the magnificent master of Ji Lei Mountain and Hou Yan Mountain and a great god. How… How could I plow fields like an ordinary bull?” Bull Devil shook his head. He was determined to not go along with this.
“Big brother…” I pulled on his sleeve and pleaded, “I’m begging you. If we don’t finish tilling the land today, it’ll be too late to sow the seeds.”
“But… But, if word gets out that I did this, big brother won’t have any face left.” Devil Bull’s voice had softened from my pleading.
I saw that his worry could be resolved, so I quickly promised to the heavens, “Miao Miao guarantees that she won’t tell anyone else about today’s events!” I also dragged over Yin Zi who had been crouching down near the field to secretly laugh and made him promise too.
Bull Devil normally doted on me in every possible way. He only hated that I didn’t asked him for help with anything normally. It was difficult for him to turn down this rare request. He hesitated for a long time. Finally, he gritted his teeth and turned around to change into his original animal form. His multicolored divine bull form was twice as big as other bulls.
I happily picked up the plow and attached it to him by mimicking what I had seen other farmers do. This was also a great engineering project. I spent a long time sorting it out before it could be considered properly done. Xiao Cha had walked here from the courtyard with a basket in her hand.
Seeing Yin Zi, she happily said, “Elder sister Yin Zi, it’s time to eat.” She turned her head and saw Bull Devil. She jumped up in shocked.
She asked, “Where did this bull come for? Why is it so big?”
“Borrowed.” Yin Zi replied simply.
“So beautiful.” Xiao Cha gently and cautiously walked to the bull. She stretched out her hand in curiosity to stroke the bull.
Bull Devil turned around and made a loud noise with his nose.
This scared her so much that she ran away to hide behind a tree. She quietly looked from far away. She didn’t dare to come closer. After she looked for a moment, she gave Yin Zi an excuse and left.
Just as I was preparing to put my hand on the plow, Bull Devil unexpectedly shook his head. He shook me off and walked forward by himself. The field that he plowed was deep and orderly. It was very beautiful.
“Big brother, you don’t need to hurry. You can do this slowly.” I considerately comforted him. But, as a result of my words, Bull Devil plowed faster.
Yun Zi stealthily walked closer to me to discuss the next step, “I can handle catching the insects. I’ll let the nearby crows come here to eat the insects and also drive out the birds that like to eat grain.
I nodded and continued the conversation by saying, “Watering the plants won’t be troublesome. I’ll ask Ao Yun to send a dragon here to regularly summon rain at night. What else do we need to do for farming?
“Sowing, fertilizing, and harvesting shouldn’t be anything special. When its time, we’ll watch other people and copy their actions.” Yin Zi counted out these tasks on his fingers.
“I’ll let the mouse demon solve the problem of spreading the fertilizer. After he had paid respect when he first came to the mountain, he hasn’t paid me protection fee for several months. He can repay those months by working.” Early on, I had beaten the group of small demons near Xiang family’s village into obediently listening to my words.
“We’ll do the sowing and harvesting. We should do something ourselves.” Yin Zi indicated that he was very satisfied with my work method.
We hadn’t spent a long time talking it over before Bull Devil finished plowing the field. The grievance and strength in his body wasn’t gone. He also easily plowed part of the neighboring fields before coming back.
I hastily went forward to give thanks.
After Bull Devil regained his breath, just as he was about to speak, Xiang Qing’s voice came from a distance, “Miao Miao, I borrowed a hoe to plow, so don’t worry and let me handle this.”
“The field has already been plowed.” I quickly replied.
“Ah?” Xiang Qing had walked to nearby. He saw Bull Devil and the neatly plowed fields. Somewhat shocked, he asked, “Where did the bull come from?”
I hurriedly pulled him over and corrected his faulty wording, “This is a bull. And he is also your elder brother-in-law.”
“Bull? Elder brother-in-law?” Xiang Qing blankly stood there. It took him a long time to put together my words to understand the connection between those two words. My demon relative was here. Consequently, Xiang Qing hastily thanked him for being so loyal to me to do the favor of plowing the field.
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“No need. You have to treat my sister well.” Bull Devil was preparing to change back to his human form to go home.
Unexpectedly, there came elder sister-in-law’s crisp voice from behind, “Younger brother-in-law, the hoe that you recently took wasn’t very good. I brought another one for you to use. Yi, where did such a handsome bull come from?”
We were ruined. We didn’t dare to move. We could only look as elder sister-in-law walked forward and inappropriately and awfully moved her hands up and down on Bull Devil’s body.
She loudly shouted, “Husband, come here to look! I’ve never seen such a big, strong bull in my life.”
It was as if an explosion occurred. A group of farmers surrounded us and gesticulated at Bull Devil. They also touched him left and right and wanted to see his teeth.
“What a truly good bull… I’ve been farming my entire life and I’ve never seen such a strong bull.”
“His body is too beautiful. We’ve been raising bulls for so long and have never raised such a good bull.”
“Does he belong Xiang family’s second son? Could we borrow the bull to use?”
“Qing-er, could you lend him to uncle to use for a bit? I’ll return him later…”
Everyone was lively talking all at the same time. It made Bull Devil almost flip out in anger. If he really let loose his anger, the repercussions would be unimaginable. Xiang Qing and I saw the wrath and hidden bitterness in Bull Devil’s eyes and broke out in cold sweat.
“Calm down… You have to be calm. As the saying goes, there are no difficulties that a bull can’t pass through. There will always be times when you lose face. I’ve done things that are even more humiliating than this. Really, it’s no big deal. Don’t dwell on unpleasant things. Accept the situation and move on.”
I dug my brain for ideas and did my best to mollify him, “If you’re really angry, you can hit and yell at me to vent your anger later. Please don’t use violence against these ordinary villagers.”
(T/N: The actual saying is life doesn’t give impassable difficulties, there are only humans who can’t pass through these difficulties.)
“Rational, you have to be rational. As the saying goes, life is full of surprises. We must be brave enough to meet them. We can’t avoid. Escaping is a coward’s behavior.” Xiang Qing gingerly comforted him. “If you’re really angry, please don’t hit Miao Miao. It’ll be fine if you vent your anger on me.”
“Forget it. Odd things will always happen if you follow this cat. Look at how I’m dressed. It should balance things out?” Yin Zi had also walked forward to join in and cause trouble. “If you’re really angry, then you should ruthlessly beat those two. Whatever happens, don’t look for me. I’m innocent and I’m unable to endure your fist.”
“What are you guys whispering about on the side?” Elder sister-in-law turned around and asked in puzzlement, “Where did this bull come from?”
“We borrowed him from a village at the bottom of Ji Lei Mountain.” Xiang Qing hastily replied.
During this period of time, I’m afraid that the lies he said were more than double his previous life’s.
“I haven’t heard of that village…”
“What region is it located in?”
The nearby people started discussing again.
With a face full of admiration, elder sister-in-law stroked Bull Devil’s back and suggested an idea, “You don’t need to return the bull that quickly, right? Our neighbor’s cow will soon go into heat. How about mating them? This bull is so wonderful. His calf will also definitely be good. If we buy the calf, it’ll be a good helper with farming when it grows up.”
As soon as these words were said, Bull Devil was spooked out of his mind. He desperately dashed off into the woods with his four legs. In a blink of an eye, he disappeared without a trace.
“Younger brother-in-law! Why are you just standing there? Go after him!” Elder sister-in-law was anxious. “You won’t be able to compensate for the loss of such a good bull if you lose him.”
Xiang Qing followed her order and scrammed. I also hurriedly followed him.
We followed the footprints and ran for a while before seeing that Bull Devil had already changed back to his human form. He was sitting underneath a big tree panting. I knew that he wasn’t happy, so I hurriedly walked forward to smile apologetically, “Big brother, thank you for your hard work and trouble today. You suffered grievances because of me.
Bull devil stared at me without speaking.
After I thought about it, I continued, “Big brother… you already have a wife and a concubine. You definitely can’t mate with those shameless little cows. Otherwise, elder sister-in-law Luo Sha will lose her temper and you’ll have to kneel on a washing board again.”
(T/N: Here’s a picture of an animal kneeling on a washing board. The washing board has grooves, so as you kneel, it’ll press against your knees and hurt a lot more than simply kneeling on the ground.)
“You!” I didn’t know why Bull Devil was so angry that he seemed half dead. He seemed like he wanted to hit me. Xiang Qing quickly went forward to intercept out of worry. Unexpectedly, Bull Devil’s hand went in a circle and hit his own leg instead.
I guessed that he was upset over not having the chance to be close to that beautiful heifer, but also worried what Luo Sha would do if she found out.
So, I hurriedly continued to persuade him, “Big brother, what’s wrong? You can’t make this mistake of violating a fundamental principle. You can only think about doing this in your heart.”
“Miao Miao, don’t say anymore…” Xiang Qing covered my mouth and pulled me behind him. Then, he smiled apologetically, “Elder brother-in-law, she was saying nonsense. Don’t keep her words in your heart. How about I treat you to a meal as an apology?”
“I don’t want to eat!” Bull Devil said raspingly.
Xiang Qing felt bad, “You came here from so far away and we caused you so much trouble. You won’t even let me act as a host. I truly feel very apologetic.”
“I want to drink wine!” Bull Devil suddenly smiled. The previous vexation was swept away. He pulled Xiang Qing’s closer by the shoulder, “Drink with me.”
“My ability to drink wine isn’t good.” Xiang Qing was in a difficult position.
“If you had a good alcohol tolerance, why would I ask you to drink with me?” Bull Devil gave him an angry look and scolded, “I want you to drink until you fall over in order to remove the resentment in my heart. And in the future, I’ll be able to say this old bull can outdrink you.”
Xiang Qing was helpless and could only agree. He turned around to say that I shouldn’t follow them and should return home to eat and rest. He’ll return home later, but I didn’t need to wait for him at the door.
I didn’t have any other way and could only watch them leave.
I returned to the fields by myself.
Elder sister-in-law saw that I had returned and anxiously asked, “Where’s that bull? Did you catch up to him?”
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“We found him. Xiang Qing is returning him now.” I replied without thinking. Yin Zi and I were packing up the farm tools.
I didn’t expect that elder sister-in-law wouldn’t give up, and she continued to ask, “Then what about the breeding? Go ask that family from Ji Lei Mountain. I had just asked my second maternal aunt about it. She said it wouldn’t be a problem. Once the calf is born, she’ll sell it to us.”
“Ah…” Seeing elder sister-in-law’s determined attitude, I really didn’t how to answer her questions. I could only look at Yin Zi for help.
Yin Zi considered for a moment before saying, “That ox can’t be used for breeding. He’s already been castrated.”
“No wonder he was so big,” Elder sister-in-law was lost in her thoughts for a moment, and then she sighed regretfully, “What a pity…”
Seeing that she didn’t continue asking questions about this, I hurriedly pull Yin Zi along to return home. I planned to come back tomorrow to sow seeds. I didn’t expect that before the setting sun had touched the horizon and set it aflame, Xiao Mao had already returned from school.
He was happily playing with Xiao Cha in the courtyard. Using the fact that she couldn’t see through his little tricks, he deceived her to the point that she was torn between living and dying.
Xiao Cha saw that Yin Zi had returned and wanted to come closer. She didn’t expect that Yin Zi would toss the tools in his hands to her. He said he was too tired lately and wanted to return to Ying Mountain to rest for a period of time. He ran off right after saying this.
I didn’t have a reason to stop him, so I only walked forward to ask Xiao Mao who returned earlier than usual, “You didn’t skip class, right?”
“Nope,” Xiao Mao replied with a smile. “Blue Feather Goddess gave our class a break, so I ran here to spend time with mom.”
“Even if you’re on break, you can’t relax on practicing.” I lectured my son with a strong sense of righteousness, “Since everything happens to be okay at the moment, follow me to practice martial arts.”
(T/N: Remember when Miao Miao was a student?)
“Okay.” Xiao Mao directly replied without fooling around. He left Xiao Cha and followed me going out.
I ran and led my son to a forest that was a few miles away. I found a place that didn’t have traces of other people and changed into my cat form to practice fighting together.
“Your core strength isn’t strong enough. Your legs’ ability depends on your core strength. With such weakness, you won’t be able to defeat anyone.” While I attacked, I admonished Xiao Mao, “You need to be faster! Your legs are short. If you can’t defeat someone, then its okay to hide too.
Xiao Mao suddenly jumped up. In midair, he twisted his body and using his hands as support, he fiercely kicked out in a series of connected movements.
I had somewhat underestimated the enemy and was almost hit in the waist.
At this time, he roguishly smiled, “All’s fair in war.”
“Good job.” I couldn’t help but praise, “You have cat and snake lineage. You should be excellent at concealing your actions and using this to your advantage. Against fellows that you can’t defeat directly, secretly wait until you the right time to attack just like when you’re hunting.”
Xiao Mao stopped his movement, rubbed his head and said, “Uncle Bull Devil told me differently. He said that I have to fight fairly and without tricks. Its disgraceful to be sneaky.”
“He’s speaking nonsense,” I smiled as I shook my head, “His animal form can’t be hidden, so of course, he said that you have to fight honorably. And, when you’re fighting to the death, who cares about lofty principles. In the end, whoever lives is the winner. Let people say whatever they want.”
“So, its like that. Offset my weakness with strengths and disregard gossip.” Xiao Mao nodded and leapt into the battlefield to continue fighting with me.
The sky was gradually getting darker. The treetops were awash by the moon’s light. The air was somewhat chilly.
I saw that we had already practiced enough and went forward to bring Xiao Mao home. But, he twisted out my grasp and disagreed. He said that he wanted to continue to practicing and wouldn’t go with me no matter what.
I was never good at refusing my son, so I could only listen to him and continue our practicing
When my entire attention was focused on Xiao Mao, a white horse unexpectedly burst out of the tall underbrush. On the horse, there was a bald monk with delicate features. He had a straight nose and slightly thick lips. He looked like a kind and an amicable person. He was wearing a long grey robe with a crimson kasaya over it and worn out shoes. He looked extremely shabby looking, except for his hat that looked exceptionally beautiful and special.
The lotus-shaped hat was embedded with gold and the sides were red. On each petal of the lotus flower, there was a multi-colored portrait of Buddha. It had a feeling of saintliness.
When I recovered my sense, I suddenly remember that I was in my cat demon form. I hadn’t changed back to my human form yet and felt somewhat guilty.
As I was pondering whether Xiao Mao and I should hide or ask Xiao Mao to not say any irresponsible remarks and walk forward to greet the monk, the monk suddenly screamed earth-shakingly loud, “Disciples, save me! There are demons here! Demons! Hurry here!”
The sound was so loud that it could break through sky until it reached the Nine Heavens. It shook the surrounding area… My ears only hear buzzing sound afterwards…
T/N: Omg, poor Bull Devil. You’re the best big brother.
I’ve always thought Miao Miao does embarrassing things because she didn’t know better or at least, she thinks those things aren’t humiliating with her cat mindset. But, reading her words to Bull Devil when she’s trying to mollify him, is she aware of her actions to some degree and is purposely disregarding it because Xiang Qing is more important to her?