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Chapter 21 Everything is Fated

The neighbors nimbly arranged the stools to surround Lin Fan. Aunt Zhang and her son stood one side, wanting to see Lin Fan’s capabilities. The art of fortune-telling, was, after all, a mystery. Although today’s society was so advanced, many would still approach fortune-tellers for advice on the important occasions in their life. However, it didn’t mean that many believed it. Most people did it for the sake of consolation. The opening was simple. Lin Fan felt that there was a need to answer everyone’s small doubts. If there were people who were good with their languages and could give a sound explanation, then the Encyclopedic Points would definitely be in the bag. “In the ‘Spring and Autumn’ period (770 – 476 BC), fortune-telling was known as the study of the Yin Yang & Five Phases of Chinese Philosophy. It only flourished in the Tang dynasty, or it could be said that fortune-telling originated from the Tang dynasty. Back then, there was a great master known as Li Xu Zhong. He created the ‘four column method’, which is known as the study of the eight characters today.” Lin Fan tried his best to explain clearly but the neighbors were all lost in the sea of information and did not manage to understand his words. When Lin Fan was finally done with explaining, nothing happened. Literally, none of them understood what he had explained, thus he did not receive any Encyclopedic Points. Lin Fan sighed and thought, “This damned life, the Encyclopedic Points are so difficult to earn.” “Master Lin, why not we just go ahead with the fortune-telling? We couldn’t understand you despite your detailed explanation.” Mr. Zhang smiled and said as he lit up a cigarette. “Alright.” Lin Fan looked closely at Mr. Zhang’s face. From an outsider’s point of view, he must be fortune-telling already. But to these neighbors, they were just there to join in the fun. But in actual fact, they were still doubtful of Lin Fan. They just listened to how profound the idea was but how could they believe in what was being preached? The fortune-tellers in the streets these days are all scammers. They could bewitch you with their ambiguous words but it ultimately depended on whether the listener believed in their words. Then, his entire life flashed past Lin Fan’s eyes. “Zhang Guo Ming, sixty-three years old, will die at eighty-one years old…, will suffer a small disaster on the 30th of July at 2 pm. He would fracture his leg while moving some goods.” The life of Mr. Zhang could be said to be smooth, with little or no major issues. 30th of July was the very next day. But as Lin Fan thought of the rules in the magical encyclopedia, he knew that he couldn’t tell it to Mr. Zhang directly. “Mr. Zhang, something bad might happen to you tomorrow but it won’t be life-threatening. Don’t worry too much.” Lin Fan tried to console Mr. Zhang after breaking the news to him as he saw the fearful look on his face. “Xiao Fan, you’re not scaring me, right?” Mr. Zhang was really frightened by Lin Fan. Although he did not really believe Lin Fan, he still felt a strange feeling. “Hehe,” Lin Fan smiled and said. “Don’t move any heavy objects tomorrow and you’ll be fine.” “Move things? What heavy things?” Mr. Zhang said. Lin Fan shook his head, smiled sheepishly and said, “It’s a secret, just remember what I said today then you’ll be good.” Lin Fan was afraid of being too direct with his words as he did not want to be struck by lightning and end up as a handicapped man. But Lin Fan could tell that Mr. Zhang did not really believe him. To Lin Fan, what needed to be said, had been said. There’s always an end to life. They were lucky to be able to find Lin Fan to fortune-tell for them. Ultimately, it all depended if they believed in him since he had already said what he needed to say. “Mr. Zhang, did you hear what Master Lin said? Be more cautious tomorrow.” The surrounding neighbors jeered at him. Mr. Zhang turned his head to his left and right and felt a little unhappy. Why would he be faced with a disaster? But these were all requested by him. Even Xiao Fan had said it, he shouldn’t be angry. “Elder Zhang, Master Lin has already told your fortune. You gotta pay.” the neighbors laughed and mocked him as they saw that Mr. Zhang was preparing to leave. “I am already going to have an accident tomorrow, why should I still pay? Ugh, I’m going home.” Mr. Zhang slapped himself in the thigh and left. Lin Fan shook his head and did not pursue the matter further. “All of you should have thought things through. I can read your fortune but if you hear something that you dislike, you shouldn’t be unhappy. Life is like this- you can’t always lead a good life and likewise, good things may happen to some people. Today is my opening and since we’re all neighbors, I will do my fortune-telling for free.” Lin Fan said. “Xiao Fan, people look at the eight characters when they fortune-tell. Why don’t you ask for them?” The way they greeted Lin Fan had changed. After what happened with Mr. Zhang, some of the people did not call him Master Lin anymore. “I am just basing it on looks. In fortune-telling, there’s facial analysis, palmistry, the study of the eight characters, personal encounters, the study of the heaven and earth…,” Lin Fan explained. But to these neighbors, they did not understand him at all. “Master Lin, is Mr. Zhang really going to face a disaster tomorrow?” Aunt Zhang asked. Lin Fan just smiled, not saying anything. Everything was recorded in the magical encyclopedia. If one believed in it, it would change one’s life. If not, it’s just one’s fate. Some of the neighbors left as they had something on, while some others all had nothing much to do and so they decided to stick around to see what Lin Fan would say to them. Everyone had their own life, and not everyone would have something major happen in their lives. Some would only occur in a few years’ time and even in a few decades. Even if he were to mention it now, it would be pointless. Besides Aunt Zhang and her son, the others would just forget about Lin Fan’s words if they were to have their fortunes read by him. It would be better not to say. Just when Lin Fan was fortune-telling for the neighbors, something happened at Red Star Primary School. A group of citizens had gathered at the school. “Why isn’t Little Boss here today?” “Sigh, the wait is killing me. If I don’t get to eat little boss’ scallion pancakes, I would feel really uncomfortable.” “It’s almost eight,;Little Boss isn’t even here yet. I have to go to work soon.” For those people, the happiest thing that could happen to them was getting a taste of Lin Fan’s scallion pancakes. The absence of Lin Fan made them anxious. At a random road junction… Liu Xiao Tian was enjoying his day as he was praised by his team leader in the morning. It was all because he did not restrain little boss from setting up his stall the other day. he wanted the citizens to be able to purchase good stuff and hence decided to do away with his original decision to restrain the others. Because of that, it stirred up the reactions of the netizens. as many of the netizens liked what he did. This had improved the image of the city enforcement officers. As the team leader got the news, he praised Xiao Tian which showed that he had done a good job. Liu Xiao Tian was still young and he still had tremendous potential for promotion. “Leader, Little Boss did not set up his pancake stall today.” a non-uniformed city enforcement officer hurried over and said. “What? little boss did not set up the stall?” Liu Xiao Tian was furious when he heard the news. He was there just to eat Lin Fan’s scallion pancakes. It would be disastrous if he did not set up the stall. Could it be that little boss went somewhere else to set up his stall? “Get on the truck, let’s go have a look at other places. Maybe Little Boss shifted his stall.” Besides them, the ladies over at the Youth Arts Magazine Publisher were all staring intently at the school entrance and waiting for Lin Fan.

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