Chapter 206: Gifting Tea Leaves
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: GaiaNove
Only after hearing those words did everyone remember that the conclusion of the test between him and Lu Xun wasn't out yet. All eyes immediately shot to Elder Tian.
Elder Tian sighed bitterly.
An appraisal competition against the creator of the painting?
What a joke! It would be ridiculous to say that Zhang Xuan had lost!
More importantly, just by granting the painting a name, the painting was raised by nearly an entire level.
"Zhang laoshi, here is your Spirit Calming Tea!"
Since Zhang Xuan had achieved victory, Tian Gang handed the teacup to him. The steam from the tea still lingered above it and the fragrance tickled Zhang Xuan's nose. Even before drinking it, Zhang Xuan felt refreshed and energized just by the aroma itself.
After taking the teacup, just when everyone thought that the young man would drink it and indulge himself in its fragrance, he simply tilted the cup and poured it onto the floor.
The fragrance of the tea immediately diffused all around the room.
Upon seeing such a valuable cup of tea being wasted, Liu Ling, Huang Yu, and the others were astonished. Disbelief shone in their eyes.
This was Spirit Calming Tea, a tea which countless cultivators dream off, only to remain out of their grasp. Even Huang Yu, an assistant master teacher, wasn't qualified to drink it. To pour it away like that.
What a waste of precious resources!
Everyone looked regretful.
"Zhang Xuan, my grandfather offered you such valuable tea out of goodwill, yet you poured it away like that. What do you mean by that?"
Tian Long abruptly stood up.
His grandfather had his butler present Zhang Xuan with the tea, but the other party poured it away in front of him. This was blatant disrespect for Elder Tian.
Besides, even Tian Long wasn't qualified to drink the tea. Yet this fellow simply wasted it like that. He found it unforgivable.
Infuriated, regardless of whether the other party was a grandmaster painter or not, he immediately rebuked him.
Ignoring the other party's howl, Zhang Xuan placed his hands behind his back and looked outside the hall. It seemed as though his attention was somewhere far away. He sighed.
"Stop putting up a front here. You are the one who poured away the tea, yet you're saying it's unfortunate now. Do you really take the Tian Clan as people you can step on like that?" Tian Long lashed out.
He was the one who poured the tea out, yet he was saying that it was unfortunate now. What the hell are you trying to do?
Are you doing it on purpose?
Everyone else were perplexed as well. They had no idea what Zhang laoshi was up to.
Liu Ling, Zhuang Xian, and the others stared at each other confused.
As master teachers, they possessed incredible discerning capabilities, allowing them to see through many matters. Yet they realized that their discerning abilities were useless before him.
They couldn't see through the other party's cultivation, his thoughts, or his intentions.
He was a mystery wrapped in an enigma.
Especially now. Despite the risk of offending Elder Tian, he spilt the tea on the floor. What was he up to?
If things went on like this, there'd be no backing down anymore. They were considering whether they should step forward to mediate the situation.
Just when everyone was feeling apprehensive of the fight that was about to occur, Zhang Xuan turned around to look at Elder Tian.
"The tea leaves of Spirit Calming Tea grow at the peak of the ice mountain, granting it its calming and revitalizing properties. It is harvested right after the blooming of its flowers. Usually, when brewed, it should allow one to maintain Heart of Tranquil Water for hundred breaths. Yet this cup could only allow one to maintain the state for twelve breaths. For the effects of such fine tea leaves to be reduced to this state, if this isn't unfortunate, what else can it be?"
"You How did you know that this cup of tea could only maintain Heart of Tranquil Water for twelve breaths?"
Elder Tian was initially infuriated by Zhang Xuan's actions as well, but upon hearing his words, he was stunned.
The effects of Spirit Calming Tea were clearly stated in the books to last for hundred breaths. However, no matter how Elder Tian brewed the tea, he was only able to maintain its effects for twelve breaths or so. Initially, he thought that it was due to the inaccuracies of the book, but hearing the matter from Zhang laoshi's mouth at this moment, he was astonished.
I thought you didn't drink the tea?
If you didn't drink it, how could you have known the effects of my tea?
"The tea set, teacups, and teapot are the Emerald Radiance Set personally created by Master Potter Wu Qingzi. As for the water, it came from the deep well in Three Gardens Platform, and it was exposed to the sun for two days straight before boiling it for an hour. And for the brewing technique, you used Seven Hearts Coiling Hands to make the tea. In order to brew this tea, you have cleansed yourself, eaten a vegetarian diet for seven days straight, and adjusted your state of mind to Heart of Tranquil Water. You went for perfection on every single aspect, fearful that a mistake would occur in the midst of anything. However, it is unfortunate. The effects of the Spirit Calming Tea you brewed still weren't maximized. Even more so, it could be said to be a failed product!"
Zhang Xuan gestured casually.
Elder Tian was flabbergasted. He didn't even notice the teacup in his hands falling onto the table.
The words of the other party were completely correct!
The water used for steeping the tea leaves was indeed from the deep well in Three Gardens Platform, the brewing technique he used was Seven Hearts Coiling Hands, and the tea set used was the Emerald Radiance Set. Before brewing the tea, he did cleanse himself and abstain from meat for a week.
He had kept all of these a secret, such that even Tian Long didn't know of it. Yet, how did Zhang laoshi find out?
More importantly to know of all of them in detail?
It was said that a grandmaster tea brewer could see through the flaws and problems within a tea just by looking, smelling, and tasting it. From there, they could offer the other party instruction, allowing the person to refine their skills.
Could it be that Zhang laoshi wasn't just a grandmaster painter, but a grandmaster tea brewer as well?
If that were the case, if Zhang laoshi offered him some advice, could it be possible for him to break through his bottleneck and reach an even higher level?
Elder Tian trembled, agitated.
Just when he was about to consult the other party on this matter, he heard Tian Long angrily howling, "To dare say that the tea which grandfather brewed is a failed product, who do you think you are? Do you think I won't teach you a lesson right now?"
Upon hearing these words, Elder Tian's eyebrows twitched and he nearly passed out.
In the Way of Tea, he had reached a bottleneck, and for many years, he had been stuck trying to surpass his limits. Right now, given how the other party was able to see through the mistakes in his Spirit Calming Tea, if he were to offer him some advice, he might be able to achieve a breakthrough. Yet his hopes were shattered with the words of this brat.
Moreover, you wish to teach a person on the level of a grandmaster in the Way of Tea a lesson?
You unfilial brute!
If not for your prejudice of this Zhang laoshi, I wouldn't have been so biased against him. If I hadn't been so rude to him, the other party wouldn't have been so displeased.
The more he thought, the angrier he became. "Shut up!"
Tian Long didn't expect his grandfather to bellow at him like that. Dumbfounded, he stood blankly on the spot.
"Go away, don't get in the way of us here!"
Waving him away, Elder Tian hurriedly stood up and walked over to Zhang Xuan. Clasping his hands, he bowed earnestly, like a student meeting a teacher. With a respectful tone, he said, "Zhang laoshi is right, the tea I've brewed is indeed a failed product. It doesn't have the effects that a true Spirit Calming Tea should possess."
He had no choice but to admit it.
Given how the other party's words were all true, he had likely seen some problem. If he were to reject his opinion vehemently at this moment, he would simply incur the ire of the other party. If so, he would pass by this opportunity to reach greater heights.
"Spirit Calming Tea can allow one to remain in the state of Heart of Tranquil Water for hundred breaths?"
Hearing Elder Tian admit to it, a commotion broke out among the crowd. Everyone stared at the young man as though he were a monster.
Especially so for Huang Yu and Bai Xun, they pulled their hair frenziedly.
Wasn't Zhang laoshi completely ignorant of the Way of Tea when he came?
Why could he see through so much now, even making Elder Tian lower his position and admit defeat?
Off to the side, Lu Xun and Wang Chao were even more so on the verge of insanity.
Isn't this fellow garbage?
To be a grandmaster capable of producing a painting of the fifth level at one moment, to able to impress Elder Tian in the field of Way of Tea in the other. Where can one find such incredible garbage?
"Zhang laoshi, I hope that you can point out my mistakes so that I can correct them and not waste such precious tea leaves."
After admitting that he was unable to fully unleash the properties of Spirit Calming Tea, Elder Tian looked at Zhang Xuan respectfully.
"I have come to your Tian Residence with the invitation of the three master teachers as a guest, yet all I've been welcomed with was contempt ever since my arrival, even to the point of being tested of my capabilities." At this, Zhang Xuan shook his head as he glanced at the elder before him. "Do you think this is the appropriate way to treat a grandmaster painter?"
Embarrassment flushed on Elder Tian's face.
If the other party were just an ordinary noble, this matter would of no great import. But Zhang Xuan was a grandmaster painter, and it was very likely that he was a grandmaster in the Way of Tea as well.
It was one thing to not show a person of such identity the respect befitting of him, but to test him.
This was clear contempt for him.
The reputation of a master teacher mustn't be sullied, and the same could be said about grandmasters as well.
Regardless of which occupation it was, reaching such a level meant that one had surpassed countless others and achieved an incredible level of mastery in the field. Even in Conferred Kingdoms, they were respected existences. Yet, in a moment of folly, he
"Frankly, I don't want to say much. However, on account on your sincerity, I can offer you some advice."
Zhang Xuan glanced at him thinly. "Red wine has to be enjoyed in a wine glass. Even wine has its own silverware, needless to say, tea. Spirit Calming Tea has a calming property, but even though the Emerald Radiance Set is a treasure left behind by an esteemed potter, it is hot in nature. Since heat breeds irritation, how can one remain calm? This is my first piece of advice.
"The Way of Tea is an art of tranquility. Your actions of cleansing yourself and abstaining from meat is a form of respect for the art. However, since it should be an art of tranquility, should there be a banquet for it? Given the commotion, your heart is already disturbed, so how can you brew the most perfect Spirit Calming Tea? This is my second piece of advice!
"You should keep these two points in mind. Perhaps this might be beneficial to your progress in the Way of Tea. I still have things to attend to, so I will be leaving now. Farewell!"
Zhang Xuan waved and headed outside.
"Zhang laoshi, please wait"
Before Zhang Xuan could step out of the hall, Elder Tian hurried forward.
"Zhang laoshi, your advice has enlightened me. This is a token of my appreciation. I hope you can accept it."
After which, he beckoned and a servant brought a box to him. Opening it gently, the deep fragrance of tea leaves gushed into the air.
"The tea leaves of Spirit Calming Tea?"
"Given the quantity two taels?"
"Even considering the entirety of Tianxuan Kingdom, only three taels are produced every year. But you want to gift two taels at once?"
Upon catching scent of the fragrance, the eyebrows of everyone here shot upward. They were all shocked by Elder Tian's gesture.
This was definitely a huge gift.
Importantly, even Emperor Shen Zhui didn't have much of a chance to drink it. Through this, it was clear to see how valuable the tea leaves were. Yet Elder Tian gifted two taels of tea leaves at once, an amount sufficient for one to brew more than a dozen pots. Wasn't this gesture of goodwill too generous?
"Looks like even though Zhang laoshi's advice sounded ordinary, it has enlightened Tian laoshi. Otherwise, it would be impossible for him to offer such a generous gift to him."
While they were shocked by his gesture, they also understood that a gift didn't come freely. Elder Tian's action of giving so many tea leaves to the other party meant that the other party had pointed out the fundamental errors behind the tea he had brewed, and Elder Tian had benefited greatly from his words.
Without even drinking the tea, with just a single look, he was able to point out the problems, resulting in Elder Tian gifting his tea leaves to the other party willingly.
How many surprises did this Zhang laoshi hold within him? Was there still more to him that they didn't know of?
Library Of Heaven's Path Chapter 206
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