“It’s insane! They’ve all gone crazy!”
Venerable Shi was enjoying the cooling breeze in his courtyard, so peaceful, so quiet… then a shriek broke his relaxation. It was the second elder, all enraged and panting.
[What’s up with the perv? He’s always indulging himself whenever he gets the chance so why is he so peeved?]
Venerable Shi raised a mocking eyebrow, “Second elder, what has gotten you so testy?”
“Venerable Shi, I’m not angry at you, it’s this darn situation!” Second elder gesticulated, finding it hard to quell his rage, “Those hussies of mine have asked me to let them go to the Labor Office. You tell me if it warrants anger or not. And to think that I made an exception when taking them in to help them become inner disciples, yet now they’ve just left me!”
Venerable Shi squinted, “Have they lost it? No matter how lustful and whiny you are, neither is bad enough to choose the Labor Office over you! Are they just throwing a tantrum?”
“No, Venerable Shi, in fact, the Labor Office…”
“They’ve all gone mental.”
Another person rushed over and shouted his indignation. They watched a tall and buff man roaring.
Venerable Shi was even more perplexed now, “Seventh elder, what happened to you?”
“What else? It’s that damn Labor Office!” Seventh elder was blowing a gasket.
Second elder had found his soul mate in plight and asked him, “Your disciples came crying to send them to Labor Office as well?”
“Come crying? That would’ve been way better.” Seventh elder flicked his sleeve, “Those brats are demanding it. They all want to go to the Labor Office and what about me? How can I be a respected member of the elder community without proper disciples? Of course I refused, but those brats stole my pills and ruined my home. They were doing all kinds of crimes, one bigger than the last. Now I have locked them up, to reflect. Ugh, I’m outraged!”
Venerable Shi listened to their rants and grew unsettled by the second, “What on earth happened? Why have inner disciples flipped with no rhyme or reason?”
“Uh, Venerable Shi, you still don’t know?”
The two sighed and the second elder explained, “Labor Office has an aberration, throwing out pills and treasures like garbage and even establishing some Elite Labor Office. As long as a laborer passes his tests, they’ll get treasures and pills, resources even. They get more stuff than even an elite. The news has made the disciples lose their minds, all coming up with strange plans to get punished and be sent to Labor Office. This fight is harsher than even in the inner sect competition.”
Venerable Shi’s face fell and he frowned, “Labor Office again. Sect Leader has played his hand I see, and he played it big. “
“Sect Leader?” The two cried.
Venerable Shi was certain, “It must be him, or how else can the Labor Office without any backbone cough up so many things and upset the sect’s peace. Sect Leader is planning to use the lower rung to crush the higher ones, to aim for us. You two, convene with the elders and venerables. Let’s see just how far is Sect Leader going to take it!”
Venerable Shi’s eyes flashed and the two cupped their hands, “Yes!”
The ringing spread across the inner sect and the oldies rushed to the hall.
Xie Wuyue frowned, walking over as well. The place was packed.
“Who called for this meeting?”
Xie Wuyue took his rightful seat and demanded an explanation, “The copper bell can only be rung in times of great crisis, unless the Sect Leader does it himself. Have you forgotten or is the sect in grave peril?”
Xie Wuyue’s icy words made everyone shrink and stammer.
Venerable Shi stepped forth with a bow, “Sect Leader, I have rung it. There’s an urgent matter in need of your attention!”
“And what might that be? A siege?” Xie Wuyue raised an eyebrow.
Venerable Shi shook his head, “Inner chaos is more pressing. The unity of our people will brave any dangers. Demon Scheming Sect will survive! Which makes this inner trouble a pressing matter. We have to settle it before it affects our safety!”
“What could have happened to be so critical that it would lead to our destruction?” Xie Wuyue had a savage look staring down at Venerable Shi.
Venerable Shi’s eyes turned to his fellow oldies, “Elders, venerables, how many disciples are exhibiting odd behavior? How many are talking about going to the Labor Office?”
“I’ve lost half of my disciples and it won’t be long before I have none left!” A grizzled old man spoke with pain.
Then another one mocked, “You fool, just refuse!”
“You’re the fool. If I refused, who knows what they’d do, who’d they piss off. I used to scare them with Labor Office threats but now they’d accept it on the spot. “
“Yeah yeah, my disciples are going crazy as well, shirking all responsibilities. What am I supposed to do?”
“Labor Office is the latest fashion all of a sudden. Everyone is dying to go there!”
The old timers devolved into a clamor, a pissing contest for who had it worst.
It was a greater havoc than when Monkey King ran amok in Heaven. What used to be a drive for the disciples to get into the inner sect, had turned 180 degrees, and become a drive to plunge into the Labor Office.
And the blow that hurt the most was Labor Office being out of these old timers’ control. They would lose all power in a matter of days and wouldn’t be able to do anything about it.
The disciples no longer gave a damn about them and this was a crushing blow to their ego.
Eyeing the crestfallen veterans, Xie Wuyue hid a smirk. This was exactly why he brought Zhuo Fan over, to curb their greedy nature.
[Give it a few more days and the inner sect will collapse.]
Venerable Shi turned to Xie Wuyue with a bow, “Sect Leader, do you see? In a state such as this, the environment is no longer suited to promote learning and nurturing. With the entire balance turned upside down, it will soon spread to the entire sect, until the sect is no more!”
“What will you have me do then?” Xie Wuyue smiled.
Venerable Shi bowed, “Sect Leader, remove that so-called Elite Labor Office’s false name and reorganize the Labor Office!”
“Please Sect Leader, reorganize the sect! Uphold the rules!” The other oldies echoed.
Xie Wuyue laughed in their faces, “I will uphold the rules indeed. But with the Labor Office being the lowest rung of the Demon Scheming Sect, it hasn’t seen administration in ages, leaving it to run its course. And if a man of great talent were to come out of it, he would be just like High Venerable. It is the only hope for all those criminals, where a great merit will lift them above this wretched station. This is the sect’s rule, our rule.”
“Touching the Labor Office equals relinquishing all that we stand for and our ancestors!”
Xie Wuyue’s icy glare drove a shiver down their spines.
Going against their ancestral teachings was a heavy crime for them as well.
Demons had no ethics but for their sect, they had to have rules or chaos ruled.
Everyone shook their heads at the Sect Leader’s stance.
He had no intention of helping them deal with the Labor Office. In fact, he was against it one hundred percent. They were free to try, but would suffer the consequences.
Some elders who were thinking of causing a scene at the Labor Office perished this thought on the spot.
Venerable Shi stood up at Xie Wuyue’s side, having seen this coming. Only his eyes flashed.
“Venerable Shi is right about one thing. Everyone aims for a higher standing. If you can’t even get a hold of your disciples, how will you go any higher? Ha-ha-ha… “
Xie Wuyue left with a self-righteous grin, strutting out of the hall and leaving the oldies choking on their words.