Even a Shaman Needs Evening Self Study

Even a Shaman Needs Evening Self Study

Chapter 11 - Artifact Spirit

Lin Yang yawned as he walked to the classroom door, feeling drowsy after a full meal and being warmed by the afternoon sun. Suddenly, he heard a loud bang of a hand slamming on a desk.

Startled, Lin Yang looked over and saw Kong Xuan glaring fiercely at Tan Xiao, his hands propped on the desk. Kong Xuan's extremely handsome face now had a sharp, intimidating aura, his eyes shining like flames.

Kong Xuan looked as if he had suffered a great humiliation. "What did you say?!"

"...I'm sorry." Tan Xiao didn't make any other movements and was even apologizing. He wasn't very familiar with the new classmate, but after exchanging a few words and observing his actions, Tan Xiao could tell this wasn't Lin Yang, but Kong Xuan, without needing further observation.

However, after saying this, Kong Xuan became even angrier.

Tan Xiao was about seven or eight centimeters shorter than Kong Xuan, clearly at a disadvantage.

There were a few other students scattered around the classroom, originally resting, but they were startled by Kong Xuan slamming the desk and were now staring at them in shock.

Lin Yang's heart jumped. They weren't going to fight, were they? He rushed over to mediate. "Don't be impulsive, don't be impulsive." He thought to himself, things were fine in the morning, how did it look like they were about to fight now?

He asked Tan Xiao, "What did you say? Was it very dirty?"

Judging by how angry Kong Xuan was, just how dirty was the insult?

Tan Xiao opened his mouth and was about to speak, but Kong Xuan had already said viciously, "You dare say it!"

If those words were spoken, it would be an even greater loss of face. How could he establish himself in the three realms if it spread?

"If I said something wrong, you can correct me." Tan Xiao was also very helpless. He had mistaken Kong Xuan for someone else, but did Kong Xuan need to get so angry?

"Yes, yes, talk it out nicely." Lin Yang glanced over and saw that Kong Xuan had slammed his desk, not his own. He didn't care since it wasn't his own desk, right?

Kong Xuan had completely lost face, but it was still difficult to say it out loud. He stared at Tan Xiao with his phoenix eyes. "I await the day you regret this!"

Tan Xiao: "..."

Why was he regretting it already?

Tan Xiao pried Kong Xuan's hand off. "You should wait for the monthly exam first."

It had to be said, Kong Xuan's words were really intriguing. Moreover, on the first day of his transfer, Kong Xuan seemed to have a past history with Tan Xiao.

"Hey, hey, class officers should lead by example, don't provoke him." Lin Yang held Tan Xiao down and went to persuade Kong Xuan. He also knew about his deskmate's little flaw and quietly smoothed things over. "He doesn't recognize you? Even if you're really childhood friends, it's no use. He really can't remember faces."

Lin Yang tapped his face. Although he couldn't imagine the world of face blindness, he could see Tan Xiao's helplessness.

Kong Xuan paused. So that was the case? Indeed, only this could explain it.

Unable to recognize faces, there was actually such a terrible affliction in the world!

But he still had to be angry. Kong Xuan pondered for a moment, then left with a flourish of his sleeves.

"What... did you do to him exactly?" Lin Yang asked in amazement. "You were getting along fine before, even agreeing to eat together."

"I didn't do anything. I'm the one being wronged here." Tan Xiao thought to himself, just because someone has a good-looking face, there's no need to have a meltdown over being mistaken for someone else, right?

Lin Yang looked back again. Kong Xuan had already stormed off to who knows where.

Xiao Tan was indeed Xiao Tan, always shutting people down with a single sentence.

Originally, they had agreed to eat together, but since Kong Xuan ran off, Tan Xiao went to eat by himself.

By the time afternoon classes started, Kong Xuan had returned, his handsome face cold. However, he was always like this, so it wasn't unusual.

At this point, most people had heard rumors that Kong Xuan and Tan Xiao had "fought" at noon. Tan Xiao was already quite well-known at No. 1 Middle School, and now he seemed to be at odds with the eye-catching transfer student. Who wouldn't be curious?

Yu Zhenzhen sat right in front of Tan Xiao, as Kong Xuan's deskmate. She and Lin Yang could feel the tense atmosphere the most. Taking advantage of Kong Xuan being called up by the Chinese teacher to recite from memory, she turned around and said to Tan Xiao, "With you two, I don't even need to go on Jinjiang to read anymore."

Lin Yang immediately reported the big news to her. "Even if you go on, you won't be able to read it. Jinjiang crashed! You don't know, do you? It's already trending on hot search."

Yu Zhenzhen didn't even turn her head, calmly saying, "Crashing and trending, that's all. Don't worry, it happens a few times every year."

Lin Yang: "...Is that so?"

He wondered, did it crash for three days every time like this time? He couldn't read the tantalizing serialized stories for a full three days.

The joys and sorrows of humans are not the same.

Looking back, Kong Xuan had finished writing on the blackboard. He had written a passage from "Li Sao": "The vast and mighty spirit of the deceased, yet never perceiving the hearts of the people!"

After he put down the chalk, all the classmates, including the Chinese teacher, exclaimed in admiration, "Wow—"

Regardless of whether the recitation was correct or not, his calligraphy was powerful and vigorous, free and easy yet not lacking in rules. Moreover, it wasn't a messy "jianghu style," but had a strong classical feel.

The Chinese teacher looked at Kong Xuan appreciatively. "Just based on this calligraphy alone, you'll have an advantage in exams! When the grading teachers see it, the impression and appearance scores will be incredibly high. Some students in your class have handwriting that looks like chicken scratches. I have to look at it for a long time to figure out what character it is. During the college entrance exam, will the grading teachers take the time to decipher your writing?

"Students with poor handwriting, you can't write even faster. Even if you write slowly, at least it'll be neat so the teachers can tell what you've written!"

Taking advantage of Kong Xuan being on stage, the teacher gave a good lecture. After all, every class always had one student whose writing looked like a heavenly book.

Kong Xuan surveyed the class with his hands behind his back. When his gaze landed on Tan Xiao, he paused slightly, his phoenix eyes glancing at him darkly. Just you wait for the next sacrificial ceremony,

Tan Xiao was speechless and lowered his head to flip through his book.

The entire class saw it clearly.

Classmates: Just what kind of grudges and enmity do they have that we can't know about!


Tonight's self-study session was supervised by the head teacher. Of course, this didn't mean he only appeared tonight. He could appear at any time, even in advance from various directions.

Just like today, Ji Huiming arrived ten minutes early, causing the students who were originally joking around to immediately settle down and return to their seats.

The broadcast at Nanchu No. 1 Middle School was still playing a program. Today's segment was "Happy Hour", sometimes with the broadcaster telling jokes, sometimes directly playing talk shows or other comedic language programs.

This time, it was playing a crosstalk segment. The dialogue between the crosstalk performers came through the loudspeaker. It was a classic setup segment in crosstalk called "Chasing the Kiln". Ji Huiming listened and started laughing.

At a glance, he saw Kong Xuan returning to his seat from outside. He thought of this student's lamentable grades and appalling level of subject bias. To be honest, he didn't understand why Kong Xuan chose to take physics.

Not to mention, according to reliable information, Kong Xuan and Tan Xiao had almost gotten into a fight because of a discussion about a question.

Ji Huiming found an excuse to walk to his desk and asked, "Kong Xuan, you seem to live on Huaxi Road. Do you know who else in our class is your neighbor?"

Tan Xiao, who was looking down and doing practice problems, paused for a moment. He knew that Ji Huiming was talking about him, as Yu Zhenzhen had told him before.

But unexpectedly, Kong Xuan also looked back at him and said indifferently, "I know."

So Kong Xuan knew they both lived on Huaxi Road. Could it be that they had really met when they were young?

Ji Huiming looked, "Eh, you know? Have you two met on the road?" Kong Xuan's information was not written in detail, so he didn't know which section of Huaxi Road Kong Xuan specifically lived on, but it was an old street and not very big.

Kong Xuan said expressionlessly, "We haven't met. I leave early and he comes back late."

Ji Huiming: "..."

"Hey, since you're in the same class and also neighbors, it's fate. What can't be talked out?" Ji Huiming still didn't directly point it out, leaving face for both of them. "Everyone should learn from each other, complement strengths and weaknesses, that's the principle. I hope to see you make progress together."

He looked at Tan Xiao, "Right?"

Tan Xiao also said a bit blandly, "I guess so."

Ji Huiming looked at Kong Xuan again, "Kong Xuan, what do you say?"

Kong Xuan said casually, "Let's discuss it later."

Ji Huiming: "..."

The black lines on his head almost materialized. At this time, the bell rang. Ji Huiming temporarily gave up and finally emphasized, "The class officers should take the lead in uniting classmates."

Tan Xiao walked along the stone-paved road of the old street with his backpack. Due to the hilly terrain of Nanchu, the road had a slight slope, stretching his shadow very long.

As he was about to reach his doorstep, Tan Xiao received a voice call from Mu Fei. He pressed answer, "Hello?"

"It's me, Mu Fei. Tan Xiao, are you out of school? I'm at your doorstep, need to find you for something." Mu Fei's voice came from the other end.

"I'll be right there." Tan Xiao also quickened his pace. Arriving at his doorstep, he indeed saw a woman with a bun leaning against a car, tapping on her phone. He couldn't recognize the person but recognized the car, so he walked up with extra confidence and called out, "Sister Mu."

Mu Fei turned to look. Compared to their last meeting, she looked much more haggard, who knew if it was from staying up late writing documents. "Hey, Tan Xiao, I came to ask for your help. Those spirit garments you made before, can you make a few more for us?"

"What's wrong? Nothing happened to Xiong Hui, right?" Tan Xiao was a bit nervous. He had personally handled things on Xiong Hui's side, but he had always said he wasn't sure about the after-sales effect. Could it be that the warranty period was less than a month?

"Xiong Hui is fine, things are going very smoothly on his side. The entire excavation progress has sped up and the excavation team is overjoyed. It's just that Xiong Hui often asks about you, always wanting to inquire through Old Ji if you miss him." Mu Fei rubbed her face and said with amusement.

Tan Xiao: "..."

"He even asked for time off, saying he wants to come pay respects to you when he's free." Mu Fei thought to herself that Xiong Hui still had vacation days, unlike her who hadn't had a break in ages.

"Actually, the reason I came to find you is because we've had a lot of cases recently. Basically everyone in the office has been sent out, and we still have to haggle with the responsible units... Sigh, anyway, we're short on artifact spirits too, so I want to order some from you. Also, do you have any good incense here? Sell me some of that too."

They were running around everywhere, and it was inconvenient to carry many things back and forth, especially if they needed a large quantity. It was more suitable to buy from the locals.

"No problem, come in and have a seat." Tan Xiao led Mu Fei into the courtyard and rummaged through a sack of incense for her. "We haven't had tourists recently either, so this incense will just get damp and need to be replaced if not used. Take it all. The spirit garments will need some time to make."

"Okay, okay, thank you." Mu Fei had been here before but it was her first time entering the house.

Looking at that entire wall of masks, some with red angry faces, some with animal heads and human forms, exuding a strong mysterious atmosphere, she suddenly saw one with two horns and a jewel embedded in the center of the brow, the eyes orange-yellow.

Mu Fei concentrated and looked carefully. It seemed familiar but she couldn't recognize it. The dim lighting made it even more enigmatic. She asked in surprise, "Which revered deity of your altar is this?"

The gods worshipped by shamans were diverse and numerous, even different for each family. She couldn't identify them all.

Seeing this, Tan Xiao quickly took it down, "The neighbor's kid came to play and hung up an Ultraman Zero mask."

Mu Fei: "..."

... Damn, good thing she didn't casually pay respects just now.

"By the way, you don't offer any food either?" Mu Fei saw that his table was bare and cold.

"My family doesn't usually do Nuo rituals. Usually when my mom is here, she changes it once a week. When she's not here, I'm in school and don't have much time. But now there aren't really any tourists anyway, and our family doesn't rely on real skills to make a living." Tan Xiao said indifferently.

Mu Fei: "..."

Mu Fei almost choked. She glanced at the peacock paper mask Tan Xiao had used to invite the gods before, also hanging on the wall, and gave a dry laugh, "Running a tourism business sure is nice, huh."

"Mm-hmm, how come I don't see Mr. Xu?" Tan Xiao asked politely.

"He was assigned to go to Qi Province. Things are in chaos everywhere right now. I'm partnered with another senior colleague from our unit, he's in the car." Mu Fei and her unit colleagues had regulations when going out on missions, just like police patrols, at least two people.

Mu Fei remembered, "By the way, if you have any leads, let me know too. The two of us are about to go crazy digging three feet under to find a artifact spirit."

"I'm usually at school." Tan Xiao felt that he probably couldn't provide any useful information, but hearing "artifact spirit", he felt curious. This was probably an internal classification used by Mu Fei and the others. "What's a artifact spirit?"

"As the saying goes, 'A person grows old and becomes a teacher, an artifact grows old and becomes a spirit.' When an artifact has existed for a long time, absorbed enough spiritual energy of heaven and earth, or encountered an opportunity, it can develop spiritual intelligence and be called a spirit. We classify those as artifact spirits." Mu Fei explained.

"Some time ago on the Gengshen day, the Emperor's Essence descended to the world, giving birth to many new spirits and demons, including this artifact spirit that grew legs and is running around everywhere. If it were an ordinary artifact spirit, it wouldn't be so troublesome to find," Mu Fei gritted her teeth, "But this particular artifact spirit is eye-catching. If we don't find it and put it back in place soon, it could be a bit troublesome and might even attract public attention."

What kind of thing, if lost and not found in time, could attract public attention?

Tan Xiao asked curiously, "Could it be some antique from a museum?"

"Antiques can at least be temporarily not exhibited, it's not that much trouble," Mu Fei's shoulders slumped, "This fellow, is a server!"

"Servers can become spirits too?" Tan Xiao was shocked. "I've heard of ancient paintings and antiques becoming spirits, even brooms becoming spirits, but servers? You mean the kind of internet servers I'm thinking of?"

"Yeah, of course it can. Isn't a server a vessel? Ancient paintings were painted by people, brooms were made by people, and servers were also made by people. When placed there, they can absorb the spiritual energy of heaven and earth. It just so happened that this one had the opportunity to absorb the Emperor's Essence, so it grew legs and ran away. It even ran from the capital to Chu Province, quite the escape artist."

Mu Fei herself felt it was ridiculous as she said it, "The more advanced society becomes, the more absurd our work gets. The Emperor's Essence comes around every sixty years, and each time there are some new species that we have to record and tabulate."

"Think about it, sixty years ago, the most advanced vessel spirits were sewing machines and bicycles. Everyone would gather around to marvel at the novelty. Now it's servers. I really fear that in another sixty years, it will be satellites."

That thing must have been so close to the Emperor's Essence and absorbed it so well.

Tan Xiao: "..."

Tan Xiao suddenly had a thought and tentatively asked, "Wait, the server you mentioned, what server is it? Your department's, or whose?"

"Uh, well, the department now requires that it can't be disclosed." Mu Fei hesitated a bit. She was just asking Tan Xiao to help keep an eye out, a request she had made to all her colleagues.

Tan Xiao tried asking, "It wouldn't happen to be Jinjiang's, would it?"

"How did you know!" Mu Fei was shocked. "You didn't say you could divine."

"It's all over the hot searches, saying their server crashed. Is it really their server?" Tan Xiao actually hadn't seen the hot search himself, he had just heard Lin Yang mention it, and took a guess. He didn't expect to actually guess correctly. Even he found it unbelievable.

No wonder they were in such a hurry to find it. They couldn't open for business without it.

"Yeah, don't tell anyone. Who knows what tricks that spirit played before escaping, causing even their disaster recovery to fail. No wonder they must find it quickly. Such a hassle."

Mu Fei dejectedly dragged the sack of incense, "Alright, I need to keep searching high and low."

"Don't you want to eat something?" Tan Xiao called out to her, "I was just about to make some noodles for a late night snack."

She still had to work later in the night.

Mu Fei thought of Tan Xiao's cooking skills and couldn't help licking her lips.

She swallowed a mouthful of saliva, then resolutely said, "No, so many people are anxiously waiting to read!"

Jinjiang's escaped server, I'm coming to catch you!


Hello! I'm Echo, and I've always been fascinated by how stories can connect us across different worlds. When I'm not translating, I'm probably playing guitar or experimenting in the kitchen. I hope my translations resonate with you, just like a good melody

Give me feedback at moc.ebircssutol@ohce.