yes ch. 34 is being translated by Da Bao, Fox-s and me......i think we still got 30-60% of translating to doOriginally Posted by IcyFox
yes ch. 34 is being translated by Da Bao, Fox-s and me......i think we still got 30-60% of translating to doOriginally Posted by IcyFox
The purpose of the ninja is to flip out and kill people.
You translators have driven me to the point of trying to read this story in Viet because I'm dying to know what's next! You and your cliffhanger endings!
By the way, I think you guys translate it a lot better than the vietnamese translators becuase they make it so hard to understand!
whew...its bound to be some good reading for the next part...all the fighting
Who cares about the fighting! I wanna see Guo Fu kow tow to Yang Guo!! nd I'll be disappointed if she doesn't!
yeah that'll definitely happen!!!!!!!!!!!Originally Posted by Bloodflowers
The purpose of the ninja is to flip out and kill people.
IcyFox, that's the longest 2 pages you have ever translated!!
Can't wait to see Yang Guo and Xiao Long Nu reunion and Guo Fu kowtowing!!!
Da Bao, if you read this, please know that I am trying to send the unfinished Chapter 34 your way, but I got the message
'Da Bao has exceeded their stored private messages quota and can not accept further messages until they clear some space.'
Please clear up some space .. or give me your email so I can re-send the file. It's rather long, since we have more than 60% of Chapter 34 finished.
To all: Please be patient for a little while, we are working hard on it. By 'we' I mean IcyFox, Jin_Yong_Fan, Da Bao and I.
Return Of The Condor Heroes
CHAPTER 39 – BATTLE OF XIANG YANG
The group of people proceeded south and inquired about Fa Wang (Golden Wheel Monk) and Guo Xiang along the way. Soon news came from everywhere saying the North and South Mongolian Armies were already besieging XiangYang, engaging the Song soldiers at the foot of the city several times, with both sides suffering many loses. The situation there was grave and urgent. Huang Rong was worried and said, “The Mongols are pounding Xiang Yang, we must get there fast. Let’s ignore Xiang-Er’s safety temporarily.” The people agreed unanimously.
The elders Huang Yao Shi, Yi Deng and Zhou Bo Tong did not bother about the worldly affairs, but Xiang Yang’s fate was extremely important, besides everyone was putting in their best to defend it, so they could not ignore the situation.
They did not meet any delays on their journey and so they reached the outskirts of Xiang Yang in a day. They found the battle trumpets sounding continuously and the flags waving around, the swords were like a forest and the horses were running frantically about. The city was like a speck in the desert as the Mongol Armies surrounded it. When they saw this, they were shocked and dismayed. Huang Rong said, “The enemy is mighty. We must wait till evening to attempt to get in.” They then hid in the nearby forest and apart from Zhou Bo Tong who was smiling mischeviously, the rest looked grim.
At the second watch, Huang Rong led the way and charged through the enemy camps. Although their martial arts were powerful, the Mongol camps were vast, one coming after the other. They were only halfway through when the patrols spotted them. The soldiers sounded the alarm and 3 hundred squads surrounded them. The rest of the camps, however, did not stir and was still calm.
Zhou Bo Tong grabbed two long spears and tried to cut a way out while Huang Yao Shi and Yi Deng held a shield each guarding the rear and blocking the troops. The 4 women were in the middle and the group pushed their way out anxiously. They were still in the camp grounds and so the enemy did not fire arrows at them for fear of hitting their own horses and losing a valuable war asset. However when they reached the open plains the archers fired relentlessly, causing Zhou Bo Tong, Yi Deng, etc. to have a hard time fending them off. The 7 people moved and fought at the same time but the enemy troops increased in numbers, with dozens of spears piercing towards them. Zhou Bo Tong, Huang Yao Shi etc. all unleashed their mighty palm power and smashed many spears and killed many soldiers. But the Mongols were much superior in numbers and they fought fiercely, forcing the group into a dangerous situation.
Zhou Bo Tong laughed, “Old Heretic Huang, looks like our 3 old lives are going to be lost here, but you must think of a way to get these 4 dolls safely out of here.” Ying Gu spat, “What rubbish! How can an old woman like myself be a doll? If we are to die, we die together, let’s just save these 3 dolls.”
Huang Rong was secretly shocked, “The Old Imp (Old Urchin Lao Wan Tong) looks like he’s not scared of the sky or the ground and never said a word of seriousness. Today we’re heavily surrounded and he thinks of sacrificing his life, looks like this situation is indeed dire!” The enemy gathered together like ants from all directions and apart from fighting to the last man, she also could not think of any way out.
After charging through several more camps Huang Rong saw 2 large black tents on the left and since she accompanied Ghengis Khan on his western expedition, she knew the tents were used to store the grain. She snatched a torch of fire and dashed to the tents. The soldiers shouted and chased her. She ran forwards quickly and darted lowly into a tent, and set everything on fire. Soon the tents were ablaze and she rushed out and rejoined her party.
The tents contained many flamable objects and the fire caused many small explosions within. Zhou Bo Tong found this interesting and threw his spear aside, snatched 2 torches and ran around and set everything on fire. He unwittingly set a stable on fire causing the horses to neigh unceasingly, throwing the camp into chaos.
Guo Jing heard some confusion in the camp at the west of the city and he rushed to the city wall. He saw a few people rushing out from a burning camp and knew they were creating trouble in the enemy camp so he quickly dispatched the Wu brothers with 2000 men to meet the party.
The Wu brothers had not gone a mile when they saw Huang Yao Shi supporting Lu Wu Shuang and Yi Deng supporting Zhou Bo Tong. The 7 people rode on 5 horses galloping quickly. The Wu brothers did not go forward to attack the enemy but ordered the men to get into formation, holding the enemy back. They then ordered the flank to come forward and support the party while everyone retreated back into the city.
Guo Jing was waiting at the top of the city wall and saw it was his father-in-law, wife, Reverend Yi Deng, Zhou Bo Tong and company. He was delighted and quickly went forth to receive them. But he saw that Lu Wu Shuang was hit by an arrow in the waist and 3 arrows were lodged in Zhou Bo Tong’s back and his eyebrows were scorched by fire. The 2 people were badly injured. Cheng Ying and Ying Gu also suffered arrow wounds but their conditions were not so serious. Yi Deng and Huang Yao Shi had good medical knowledge but when they examined Zhou Bo Tong and Lu Wu Shuang, they frowned and remained silent.
Zhou Bo Tong laughed, “King Duan, don’t fret, this Old Imp wouldn’t die so easily. You should spend more effort treating that doll Lu Wu Shuang.” He had always made monkey faces at Huang Yao Shi but he respected Yi Deng and was perhaps even fearful of him. Yi Deng has become a monk many years ago but Zhou Bo Tong still addressed him as ‘King Duan’. Huang Yao Shi and Yi Deng saw that he had a high tolerance of pain so they smiled and stopped worrying. Lu Wu Shuang, however, was still unconscious.
The following day at the crack of dawn the war drums were sounded and battle chants were shouted. The Mongolians had attacked. The Xiang Yang troops acted according to Governor Lu Wen De and the Defence General’s orders and defended the 4 city gates. Guo Jing and Huang Rong accended the city walls and saw that the Mongol troops were spread across the mountains and plains, seemingly countless. The Mongol armies had attacked Xiang Yang many times, but this time the campaign involved the largest military strength ever. Fortunately Guo Jing had spent some time in the Mongol armed forces before and was well-versed in their techniques of capturing a city, so he was well-prepared. No matter how the enemy deployed their archers, firearms, battering rams or scaling ladders, the troops were positioned in such a way that they could counter them all. By sundown the Mongols had already lost 1000 troops but they continued to fight fiercely.
Apart from the legions of soldiers (1 legion = 10,000) in Xiang Yang, the popluation amounted to 100,000. Everyone knew that once this city falls all would be lost, so everybody resolutely defended the city; even the old and weak carried the stones and rocks used to repel the enemy. The city resounded with the sounds of fighting and the arrows flew overhead like locusts.
Guo Jing wielded a long sword and commanded the troops at the top of the city wall with Huang Rong by his side. The sky was red in the sunset and the scenery was a sight to behold. However at the foot of the city the enemy soldiers swarmed forwards and their faces could be seen. Guo Jing stood his ground at the top exuding a heroic aura and his heart was filled with the deep and sincere love for his wife. On this day the mighty enemy was pounding the city and it was uncertain if they could be driven back again. Huang Rong thought, “Brother Jing and I have been married for 30 years, most of our time was spent on this city. The 2 of us have been defending against the enemy for so long, even if all our blood is splashed on this wall it wouldn’t be in vain.” She looked at Guo Jing and noticed that his hair had turned a shade whiter so she thought, “Everytime the enemy attacks, Brother Jing will have a few dozen more strains of white hair.”
Suddenly they heard the Mongols call out thogether, “May Your Majesty live to 10,000 years!” The voices resonated throughout the area. A large banner was hoisted and a metal charriot with a green umbrella came forward together with a large entourage. It was the Great Khan Meng-ge himself coming to lead the battle.
The Mongols saw that their Khan was here personally and their morale was raised by leaps and bounds. The red flag was waved and the soldiers at the foot of the city split into formations with 20,000 men attacking the north gate. These troops were the Khan’s personal guards and were very highly trained and they were fresh and without battle fatigue, all wanting to prove themselves to the Khan. Several hundred scaling ladders were placed against the city walls and the troops accended like a nest of ants.
Guo Jing waved his arms, shouting, “Brothers, today we shall let the Khan see the might of the heroes of Great Song!” His shout was generated by his chi and everyone could hear him clearly amidst the din. The Song troops had battled for a day and were getting tired, but when they heard Guo Jing shouting, their weary senses were jerked into attention and thought, “The Mongols have oppressed us long enough, today we shall show their Khan what we’re made of!” Everyone gave their best to the life-and-death battle.
The Mongol soldiers’ bodies were piling higher at the foot of the city and the troops at the back became mad with rage, stepping on the bodies to assult the city. The Khan’s attendants rode back and forth to relay the orders and depolyed the troops forwards. Dusk was approaching and thousands of torches were lit, throwing so much light that it seemed like day.
When Governor Lu Wen De saw this situation, he saw that the city could hardly be defended he timidly ran up to Guo Jing and Huang Rong stammering, “Hero… Hero Guo, we can’t defend anymore, let’s… let’s leave the city and retreat south!” Guo Jing sternly said, “How could the Governor say that? Xiang Yang exists and we exist, Xiang Yang falls and we fall!”
Huang Rong saw that the situation was precarious and if Lu Wen De suddenly gave the order to retreat, the troops would be thrown into confusion and Xiang Yang would be overrun, so she shouted, “If you dare to say anything about retreating I’ll bore 3 holes through your body!” Lu Wen De’s guards came up to block her but she swept across with her leg and the guards fell backwards.
Guo Jing shouted, “Let’s go up and repluse the enemy together! If we don’t fight to the death, how can we consider ourselves true men?” The soldiers all respected Guo Jing, now they heard him shout with awe, they agreed and grabbed their weapons, sprinting to the edge of the walls to fight the incoming enemy troops. General Wang Jian hollered, “We must defend the city tenaciously, the Mongols can’t hold on any more!”
A Mongol officer shouted, “Everybody listen up – The Khan has decreed that the first man up the city shall be the lord of Xiang Yang!” The Mongol troops cheered the whole body of soldiers rushed forwards without caring about their lives. Meanwhile an officer came forward with a red flag bearing the decree. Guo Jing grabbed a metal bow and shot an arrow which seared through the air. The officer was hit and he immediately fell off the horse. The Mongolians called out in surprise and their morale was deflated. Before long, another battalion arrived at the foot of the city.
Yelu Qi took a long spear and ran before Guo Jing, saying, “Father- and Mother-in-law, the Mongolians are still not withdrawing, I would like to get out of the city and engage them.” Guo Jing said, “OK! Take 4,000 soldiers with you. But be careful.” Yelu Qi turned around and decended from the wall. Before long the battle drums were sounded and Yelu Qi together with 1,000 Beggars’ Sect members and 3,000 soldiers charged out of the city with full battle-gear.
At the north gate the Mongol troops were in a desperate situation, when they saw the oncoming Song troops charging towards them, they fled immediately. Yelu Qi’s regiment persued them. Suddenly the Mongolian troops fired 3 canon shots and 20,000 soldiers surged forwards and surrounded Yelu Qi’s 4,000 troops.
The 3,000 soldiers had good training and good martial arts and were very brave. Together with the 1,000 Beggars’ Sect members, they were not intimidated even though they were surrounded. Guo Jing, Huang Rong, Lu wen De and Wang Jian were watching the ongoing battle below but saw that the Song battilion’s formation was still orderly even though they were fighting 1 against 10. In the darkness the weapons flashed under the torches’ light and it seemed like a hundred thousand silver ants dancing. It was a bloody battle!
The Mongol armies were now using 20,000 troops to hold down Yelu Qi’s 4,000 troops and another 10,000 soldiers to scale the city wall. (A bit confusing here – if they’re using 20,000 men to fight 4,000 then why are Yelu Qi’s troops fighting 1v10?)
Guo Jing saw that Yelu Qi’s troops were blocked outside the city and the Mongolians were sending even more reinforcements, then he ordered the Wu brothers to leave a gap and allow the Mongolians to get onto the city walls. The thousands of Mongol soldiers at the foot of the city saw that they had broken the defence and they cheered.
Lu Wen De’s face turned pale and he trembled uncontrollably, saying, “Hero Guo, How… how… how can this be good? We should… should…”
Guo Jing did not reply and saw that about 5,000 troops have already accended the city wall then he waved his black command flag. The drums sounded and Zhu Zi Liu and Wu San Tong suddenly appeared and ambushed the enemy, closing the gap and stopping the enemy’s invasion. The 5,000 soldiers were trapped inside the city.
At this time the Song soldiers were trapped outside the city while the Mongol soldiers were trapped inside the city. Fierce fighting was still going on at the east, west and south gates and the soldiers were shouting unceasingly.
The Khan was sitting atop a small hill directing the battle himself, and beside him were more than 200 battle drums, producing deafening noises and a man could hardly hear himself over the din. The dead and the injured were lying everywhere and the blood covered the armour and weapons. The Khan has experienced many battles and conquered many lands even until Europe; many armies fled on sighting his armies. This time, however, he witnessed such a crushing setback and he was surprised, thinking, “Everyone says the Southerners are weak and useless, but these people are no weaker than my armies!
It was the 3rd watch now and the Moon and stars were shining brightly, illuminating the Earth. All was calm and still except the thousands of people fighting to the death at this city.
They fought late into the night and the losses on both sides were heavy but victory was still undecided. The Song soldiers occupied an advantageous position while the Mongols were superior in manpower.
Suddenly the soldiers at the front called out and a squad of Song soldiers charged out and rushed to the small hill. The Khan’s personal guards all fired a volley of arrows to hinder them. Meng-ge looked down and saw a Song general carring 2 spears and riding a large horse moving swiftly on the battlefield and could not be blocked. The arrows flew towards him like torrents of rain but he blocked all of them. Meng-ge waved his left hand and the drumming stopped. He asked around, “This person is so brave and fierce, who is he?” A white-haired general said, “Your Majesty, this person is Guo Jing. Years ago Genghis Khan made him the Golden Blade Prince Consort (Jing Dao Fu Ma) and he greatly contributed to the western campaign.” Meng-ge called out in dismay, “Ah, so it’s him! He really lives up to his reputation!”
Meng-ge’s generals heard him praise Guo Jing so highly and so they were dissatisfied. Four of them yelled out, grabbed their weapons and charged towards him.
Guo Jing saw that these 4 people were tall and their horses large, 2 of them wearing white head-gear and the other 2 wearing red head-gear. Their voices were like the runbling thunder and their horses were swiftly closing in on him. He raised a spear and chopped down, cutting the sabre of one of the generals into two and pierced him in the chest with the other spear. Another two of them thrust out their spears and tried to block Guo Jing’s spears. The last general pierced his snake-spear towards Guo Jing’s abdomen. All four of them were using long weapons and he could not turn on time to face the last spear, so he released his spears and avoided the spear thrust at his abdomen. He then grabbed the other two’s spears and snatched them away like a bolt of lightning. The 2 generals were well-known warriors of the Mongolian armies but how could they resist Guo Jing’s extraordinary strength? They felt their arms go numb and Guo Jing quickly turned the spears around and thrust the spears towards their chests. The spears could not penetrate the strong armour but the blow caused them to cough out blood and fall from their horses.
(The white head-gear is the rank insignia of a regiment [10,000 men] commander while the red head-gear is the the rank insignia of a battalion [1,000 men] commander.)
The last general was very brave and although he saw his 3 other comrades die, he still attacked with his spear but Guo Jing avoided his thrust again and smashed down heavily on his helmet, crushing his skull.
(Er, I think this novel should be rated R for the violence…)
Everyone saw Guo Jing kill 4 brave generals within a few seconds and became frightened. Even though they were in front of the Khan’s charriot, they did not dare step forward to fight him, only firing arrows in hope of warding him off. Guo Jing’s horse galloped up the small hill but the hundreds of spears formed a wall in front of the Khan so he could not get closer. Suddenly his horse was struck by 2 arrows and collasped; the Mongol soldiers cheered and swarmed forwards.
However Guo Jing leapt up and pierced a company commander (Bai Fu Zhang) and jumped onto his gorse. He swept his spear about forcefully and killed more than 10 guards.
He dashed about wildly and the soldiers around him fled. He could kill at will amidst the hundreds of thousands of troops and the Mongol soldiers could not handle him. Meng-ge frowned and commanded, “Whoever kills Guo Jing will be rewarded with 10,000 taels of gold and a triple promotion!”
Guo Jing saw that the situation was dangerous and he realised he could not reach the Khan. He killed a few more troops nearby and quickly shot an arrow towards Meng-ge. Although the arrow was not shot with great strength, it seared through the air like a lightning bolt and flew straight towards Meng-ge. The guards were all stunned and 2 company commanders quickly used their bodies to shield the Khan. The arrow pierced right through the first person and lodged itself in the second person’s chest. The 2 of them were stuck together but they did not collapse.
When Meng-ge saw this, his face turned white. His guards surrounded him and they retreated down the hill.
At this time many Mongol soldiers shouted. A body of Song soldiers charged out and the leader wielded 2 metal ores and swung them around fiercely, it was the Boatsman. Huang Rong saw that Guo Jing was not doing well so she was worried and sent the Boatsman together with 2,000 men as reinforcements. The Mongols saw their Khan retreating, causing their battle formation to crumble.
Huang Rong saw everything clearly and commanded, “Everybody, say the Khan is dead!” The soldiers cheered, “The Khan is dead! The Khan is dead!” The Xiang Yang troops have fought with the Mongolians for many years so they also picked up some Mongolian; now they were shouting and yelling in Mongolian.
When the Mongol troops heard this, they turned around and saw their Khan’s Banner Party retreating hastily and thought their Khan was really dead so they discarded their weapons and quickly ran off.
Huang Rong ordered the soldiers to pursue them and opened the north gate. 30,000 soldiers charged out of the city. YQ’s 4,000 men had already decreased to half and the remainder chased the enemy together. The Mongol troops, however, were well-trained and withdrew in a swift and orderly fashion, so the Song troops could not catch up. But the 5,000 Mongol soldiers trapped in Xiang Yang could not escape and were all killed.
When the enemy had gone, it was already morning. This battle was fought for a whole 24 hours and the sand was stained with blood and the bodies piled up into small mountains. Damaged weapons, broken flags and dead horses littered the battlefield.
The casulty rate was 40,000 for the Mongolians and around 23,000 for the defenders of Xiang Yang. This is the worst defeat the Mongolians suffered ever since the beginning of the southern campaign.
Although the defenders of Xiang Yang managed to drive away the enemy forces, Xiang Yang was filled with mourning; mothers crying over their sons and wives crying over their husbands.
Guo Jing and Huang Rong did not rest immediately but went to survey the 4 gates and consoled the soldiers. They then went to visit Zhou Bo Tong and Lu Wu Shuang and found that they had greatly recovered. Zhou Bo Tong could not tolerate being in bed for so long and he was already pacing around restlessly. When Guo Jing and Huang Rong saw this they laughed. Finally they went back home for a good day’s sleep.
The next morning, Guo Jing went to the government office to discuss the military situation with Lu Wen De. Suddenly a soldier reported that a Mongolian regiment was heading towards the north gate. Lu Wen De was shocked, “What… they had just gone… why are they back? This… this can’t be happening!”
Guo Jing immediately went up to the city wall to take a look. The enemy stopped several li (1 li = 0.5 km) and did not attack. After some time about 1,000 workers put together a 10-storey high wooden tower.
By now Huang Yao Shi, Huang Rong, Yi Deng, Zhu Zi Liu and company were already observing the enemy and saw they built a tower out of the blue and could not figure out what they were up to. Zhu Zi Liu said, “If they’re building this tower to spy on the city it’s too far out to see anything from there. Moreover if we fire flaming arrows they tower would be destroyed, what use is that?” Huang Rong knitted her brows and thought deeply but could not come up with any reasonable explanation. The people around her were equally puzzled. Zhu Zi Liu continued, “Could it be that they can’t defeat us so they’re building some sort of prayer tower? Or are they trying to perform some witchcraft?” Guo Jing said, “I’ve been in the Mongolian armed forces for so long yet I’ve never seen anything like that before.”
As they were talking, they saw the workers digging a deep and broad moat around the tower and used the mud dug out to form some sort of wall. Huang Yao Shi said angrily, “Xiang Yang is the hometown of Zhuge Liang. The Mongolians dare to try some silly tricks here, they’re really looking down on us.”
Then the horns blew and the drums sounded. The legion came up and took up positions on the left of the tower. Then another legion came forward and took up positions on the right. Finally another 2 legions took up positions at the front and back of the tower respectively. Altogether there were 40,000 soldiers surrounding the tower. The formation spreaded over a few li and footmen, calvary, archers and infantry formed up together, looking like a metal bucket around the tower.
A trumpet was blown and the drumming stopped; the soldiers were all silent and 2 horses came up to the foot of the tower. The riders got off and went up the tower together. It was some distance away and they could not be seen clearly but it looked like a male and female.
The people were still wondering what was going on when Huang Rong suddenly screamed and fainted, falling backwards. The people quickly woke her and asked together, “What? What?” Huang Rong’s face was deathly pale and she trembled, saying, “It’s Xiang-Er, it’s Xiang-Er.” Everyone was stunned. Zhu Zi Liu asked, “Madam Guo, what did you see?” Huang Rong said, “I can’t see her face clearly but by intuition I deduced that it must be her. The Mongolians can’t take this city so they came up with this evil plan. This… this is totally despicable and terrible.” Huang Yao Shi and Zhu Zi Liu heard this and were speechless as their faces turned pale with anger. Guo Jing was still blur so he asked, “How on Earth did Xiang-Er end up there? And how are the Mongolians despicable?”
Huang Rong finally got up and said, “Brother Jing, Xiang-Er was unfortunately captured by the Mongolians. They built this tower and filled the base with dry grass and forced Xiang-Er up the tower. They’re trying to force you to surrender. If you don’t they will burn her alive to wrench our hearts and destroy our concentration so that we can’t defend the city properly.”
Guo Jing was shocked and furious and asked, “How the hell was Xiang-Er captured?” Huang Rong said, “We were busy fighting the enemy for several days, so I didn’t tell you about this in case you lose your concentration.” She then narrated how Guo Xiang was captured by the Golden Wheel Monk (Jin Lun Fa Wang or Jin Lun Guo Shi) and how Yang Guo went missing at the bottom of the Loveless Valley. After she had finished, Guo Jing frowned and said, “Rong-Er, it was wrong of you to do that. Without determining if Guo-Er is dead or alive how could you just leave the valley like that?” Guo Jing had always respected his wife and never scolded her in front of others, but this time he spoke sternly to her in front of everyone, causing her face to turn red.
Yi Deng said, “Madam Guo was suffering an intense chill and could have died from hypothermia and we believed Yang Guo was not there. Besides the young lady has been captured so we quickly gave chase. You can’t blame Madam Guo.” Guo Jing did not dare to argue with Yi Deng and only said sternly, “This girl Guo Xiang has always caused a lot of trouble. If anything happened to Guo-Er how could we be at ease? Just let the Mongolians burn her up.”
Huang Rong did not say anything but decended from the city wall. The people were all discussing how they could rescue Guo Xiang when they suddenly saw the city gate left open and a single horse was galloping north. The rider was of course Huang Rong. Everyone was shocked and Guo Jing, Huang Yao Shi, Yi Deng and company all mounted their horses and gave chase.
They galloped near the tower and stopped out of range of the archers. They saw a young pretty girl tied onto a wooden pole at the top of the tower. It was indeed Guo Xiang.
Although Guo Jing said she always created trouble, she was after all his daughter so how would he not be anxious? He said loudly, “Xiang-Er, don’t worry, Father and Mother are coming to rescue you!” His internal strength was very solid and his voice was clearly heard at the top of the tower. Guo Xiang was already getting dizzy under the hot sun but when she heard her father’s voice, she happily shouted, “Father, Mother!”
Fa Wang laughed, “Hero Guo, if you want me to release her it’s very easy. But do you have the courage?” Guo Jing had always been calm and steady, he was more calm in precarious situations and was not angry with what Fa Wang said. He said, “Fa Wang, if you have any problems just tell me.” Fa Wang said, “If you have the benevolence of a parent, come up here with your hands bound and exchange yourself for your daughter.” He knew Guo Jing had a high sense of public duty and would not lose Xiang Yang for his daughter, so he purposely said this to provoke him into walking into the trap. But Guo Jing did not fall for it and said, “It’s me you want, why create trouble for my daughter? Since the Mongols fear me, how can I let you kill me so easily?”
Fa Wang laughed coldly, “Everyone says Hero Guo’s martial arts are very outstanding and his bravery is unmatched, but he’s actually a coward who’s afraid of death.” His attempt to provoke him might have worked on others but Guo Jing just smiled and did not bother.
However Wu San Tong and the Boatsman was provoked by Fa Wang and they waved their metal hammer and metal ores respectively and surged forward. The Mongol archers were already poised to strike and were only waiting for them to get closer to shoot them down. Reverend Yi Deng saw that this was bad and jumped off his horse and somersaulted, landing in front of their horses. He waved his sleeves and obstructed the horses, saying, “Go back!” The 2 had gone forth only due to a burst of anger but they knew that there would be no return once they went, so when they saw their master blocking them, they retreated immediately. The Mongols saw this old monk caught up with the horses and could not help but cheer.
Fa Wang said, “Your daughter is beautiful and intelligent, I like her very much and want to take her as my diciple and pass down all my skills to her. But the Khan ordered her to be burnt alive if you don’t surrender. You’ll be sad and I’ll feel that it’s such a pity, please consider this carefully.”
Guo Jing snorted and saw about 40 soldiers standing at the foot of the tower with fire torches and would immediately set the tower ablaze on Fa Wang’s command. The 40,000 soldiers guarded the tower tightly, how can anyone penetrate their formation? Even if they got through, the soldiers could just set the tower on fire, how could they rescue Guo Xiang on time?
Guo Jing was with the Mongolian armed forces for a long time so he knew how cruel the Mongolians could be. When they conquered a city, they could kill hundreds of thousands of women and children in a day. Burning Guo Xiang alive was like killing an ant to them. He raised his head and saw that his daughter was thin and pale and was greatly distressed. He shouted, “Xiang-Er, you’re a good girl of Great Song, don’t be afraid. If Father and Mother can’t save you today, we’ll kill this bald bastard to avenge you! Understand?” Guo Xiang cried and nodded, saying, “Father, Mother, I’m not afraid!”
Guo Jing said, “This is my good daughter!” He took out a metal bow and shot 3 arrows continuously, hitting 3 soldiers at the top of the tower and the arrows pierced right through them. They screamed and fell to the ground. Guo Jing’s archery skills was taught by the legendary Mongolian General Zhe-be and he practiced for many years. He was standing out of range of the Mongolian archers yet he managed to hit the 3 men on the tower. The Mongol troops yelled out and quickly raised their shields to protect themselves. Guo Jing said, “Let’s go!” He turned the horse around and went back to the city.
The people got back up to the city wall. Huang Rong blankly stared at the tower and her heart was beating rapidly.
Yi Deng said, “Their formation is solid, if we want to save Xiang-Er we must first break and destroy the formation of the 40,000 men.” Huang Yao Shi said, “Exactly.” He thought for a while then said, “Let’s use the 28-Star Formation (name taken from the comic/manga version) and battle them.” Huang Rong hung her head and said, “Even if we win, they will set the tower alight, what do we do then?” Guo Jing said, “We’ll try our best. Whether Xiang-Er lives or dies we’ll leave it to fate. Father-in-law, how do we use the 28-Star Formation?”
Huang Yao Shi laughed, “The formation’s changes are complicated. When I saw the Dipper Formation of the Quan Zhen Sect, I thought deeply and came up with this formation to counter their Dipper Formation.” Yi Deng said, “Old Heretic Huang is a master of the Five Elements so I think this 28-Star Formation must be marvellous.” Huang Yao Shi said, “My formation was orginally intended for a fight consisting of only a few dozen Wulin fighters. I never expected to use it in a battle involving thousands of men. But apart from a few changes, it can be used roughly as it is. Unfortunately we lost the 2 condors.” Yi Deng said, “Let’s hope for the best.”
Huang Yao Shi said, “If the condors were not killed by that bald bastard, we could send them in to rescue Xiang-Er by air when the formation is in action. This 28-Star Formation follows the changes of the Five Elements and we need 5 skilled fighters to head this formation. We already have suitable people for the north, south, east and central positions. But Zhou Bo Tong is injured so he can’t fill the west position. If only Yang Guo were here. His martial arts are not below Ouyang Feng, but where can we find him now? This last position is really giving me a headache.”
Guo Jing looked at the tower, then looked far out into the north. His heart flew to the Loveless Valley,
And muttered, “I’m worried about Guo-Er, I don’t even know if he’s alive.”
On that day Yang Guo was totally heartbroken and thought he would never see Xiao Long Nu again and so he jumped down into the valley, wanting to smash himself up and end it all. However after falling for some time there was a splash and he found himself in a deep lake. He had fallen from a great height and so he sank deep into the lake. Suddenly he noticed a light in front of him which looked like an underwater cave. He wanted to look closely at it but the water pressure was too high and he rose back to the surface. At this time Guo Xiang also fell into the lake.
Yang Guo did not hestitate and immediately dragged Guo Xiang to the surface and pulled her to the bank and asked, “Sister, how did you fall down here?” Guo Xiang said, “I saw you jumped down and so I followed suit.” Yang Guo shook his head saying, “Nonsense! Are you not afraid of death?” Guo Xiang laughed, “If you’re not afraid, neither am I.” Yang Guo’s heart shook and thought, “Don’t tell me that at such a young age she already have deep feelings for me?” He shivered slightly.
She then took out the last needle saying, “Brother, on that day when you gave me the three golden needles, you said I could ask for a wish for every needle and you woud promise to do it. Today I’m telling you my third wish : Whether or not you can get to meet Sister-in-law, you will not commit suicide.” She then placed the needle on his palm.
Yang Guo looked at the needle and said, “You came all the way from Xiang Yang just to ask for this?” Guo Xiang was delighted and said, “Yup. You’re a man of your word. You won’t break your promise to me.”
Yang Guo sighed. He had just gone from life to death, then from death back to life. No matter how strong his will to die, he would not repeatedly attempt suicide. He examined Guo Xiang and saw that she was shivering and teeth chattering. Her face was void of colour. He picked some dried leaves and wanted to start a fire but their flints were wet and rendered useless, so he said, “Sister, circulate your internal energy to get rid of the cold so you won’t get a chill.” Guo Xiang was still worried and asked, “So you promise not to attempt suicide again?” Yang Guo said, “I promise!” Guo Xiang was overjoyed and said, “Let’s circulate our energy together.”
They sat down together and circulated their chi. Yang Guo practiced his internal energy on the Chill Jade Bed since young and did not fear the cold so he placed his palm on Guo Xiang’s back and sent a stream of ‘yang’ chi to her. Before long Guo Xiang felt warm and stopped shivering.
When she was well-rested, Yang Guo asked how she ended up here in the Loveless Valley. Guo Xiang told him. Yang Guo angrily said, “This Fa Wang is so ruthless, when we get out of here I’m going to beat him to pulp.” Then they saw a large white condor crashing down into the lake, appearing to be severely injured. Guo Xiang was surprised and said, “That’s my family’s condor.” Then another condor flew down and landed near them and Yang Guo placed Guo Xiang on its back. He thought the condor would be back to pick him up so he waited for some time but it did not show up. Little did he know that the condor was already dead.
Yang Guo looked around and saw a few bee hives on a large tree. The bees were larger than normal and were of the same species that Xiao Long Nu reared back at the Ancient Tomb. Yang Guo exclaimed in surprise and stood rooted to the ground. He then went over to examine the hives closely. He saw that they were man-made and the workmanship looked like Xiao Long Nu’s doing.
He thought, “Could Long-Er have lived here after she jumped down?” He paced around the bank and felt that it was like the bottom of a deep well. The place hardly received any sunlight.
He walked around and found that some of the trees had much of their bark stripped off and then he saw some flowers and stones arranged neatly and he suddenly became happy and worried at the same time. His heart beat rapidly as he felt Xiao Long Nu must have lived here before but after 16 years he did not know what might have happened to her. He had never believed in divine intervention but now he was consumed with anxiety and knelt down and prayed, “O’ Heaven, please let me meet Long-Er again!”
After praying, he looked around again but did not find any more traces of her. He sat under a tree and thought, “Even if Long-Er is dead there would surely be some remains left behind, unless they have sunk to the bottom of the lake.” He then remembered the light beneath the lake’s surface and wanted to explore it, so he jumped into the lake.
He shouted, “I must get to the bottom of this. I’ll never give up until I find out what happened to her.” He dived into the lake and it got colder as he went deeper. Soon the water was icy-cold. Yang Guo did not mind the cold but the pressure was too high and he could not dive any deeper. He was now out of breath so he surfaced and grabbed a rock and tried again.
This time he sank rapidly and saw the light again. He quickly swam towards it and strangely felt a swift current sweeping him into the cave. He threw the rock aside and found that the cave was going upwards. Soon he broke the surface with a splash. He saw the brilliant sunlight and the fragrance of flowers filled his nose. It was like another world. He looked around and saw beautiful flowers and bright green grass - it was as if he entered a large garden. However the place was still and quiet and there was no one around. He got out of the water and saw a thatched hut several metres away.
He dashed forwards but slowed down after a few steps and thought, “What if I can’t find out anything here?” His heart sank and feared that his last hope would soon be dashed. He stopped outside the hut and listened carefully but there seemed to be no one inside. He only heard the bees buzzing.
After a while he plucked up his courage and trembled, saying, “I’ve come for a visit. Please pardon my intrusion.” He repeated this but there was still no response. He lightly pushed open the door and it creaked open.
Stepping in, he looked around and was stunned. The furniture was simple but the house was sparkling clean. There only was a table and chair but its arrangement was very familiar, exactly the same like the arrangement in the Ancient Tomb. He did not examine the place and naturally turned left and he saw a small room. After passing the small room, he found himself looking into a bigger room. In the room the bed, table and chair also had exactly the same arrangement as in the Ancient Tomb. The only difference was that the furniture in the Ancient Tomb was made of stone while the furniture here is made of wood.
On the left was a bed which looked like the Cold Jade Bed he practiced his Internal Strength; In the middle a long rope was suspended through the room which he used to practice his Qing Gong (Lightness Skill); Near the window was a small stool which was where he learnt to read and write. On the left was a rough wooden cabinet; when he opened it he saw children's clothes made of tree bark which was exactly of the same design Xiao Long Nu made for him years ago. He walked into the room and touched the bed. The tears had already welled up in his eyes but now he could not hold them back and the tears rolled off his cheeks and fell onto the bed.
Suddenly he felt a smooth hand lightly stroking his hair, gently asking, "Guo-Er, what's making you unhappy?"
The tone and the manner his hair was stroked was similar to how Xiao Long Nu cajoled him when he was young. Yang Guo jerked around and saw a fair and extremely beautiful girl standing gracefully in front of him. She looked exactly the same as the Xiao Long Nu he thought of daily and missed terribly for the past 16 years.
The two of them stared at each other then exclaimed “Ah!” and embraced each other tightly. It seemed so real yet it seemed like a dream.
After a long while Yang Guo finally broke the silence. He said, “Long-Er, you’ve not changed a single bit. But I have aged.” Xiao Long Nu stared at him and said, “No, it’s just that my Guo-Er has grown up.”
Xiao Long Nu was slightly older than Yang Guo by a few years but she lived in the Ancient Tomb since young and learnt internal strength techniques from her master, which required her to purge her emotions. Yang Guo however more readily expressed his emotions, so at their wedding the 2 already looked about the same age.
(Paragraph translated by Sunnysnow. Edited by IcyFox.)
The Jade Maiden Skill's cultivating techniques from the Ancient Tomb sect concentrates on the essential rules of the "Twelve nothingness and Twelve plentifulness" which support each other. The 'Twelve nothingness' refers to the restrictions regarding thought, love, desires, matters, words, laughter, worries, fun, happiness, anger, good and evil. The 'Twelve nothingness' will inevitably become part of one's livelihood. The ‘Twelve plentifulness’ states that if one thinks too much, the concentration will be disrupted. If one loves too much, the energy will break down. If one desires too much, one will lose one’s knowledge. If one has too many matters at hand, one will look weary in appearance. If one talks too much, it will affect one’s breathing. If one laughs too much, one will strain one’s organs. If one worries too much, it will affect one’s nerves. If one plays too much, it will affect one’s ideas. If one is too happy, it will result in complacency and trouble. If one is too angry, it will affect one’s pulse. If one experiences too much good, one will despair. If one experiences too much evil, one will invite chaos. If one does not rid the ‘Twelve plentifulness’, one would not reach enlightenment.
Xiao Long Nu practiced this skill since young and had no happiness or worries, so she was even more emotionless than the founder Lin Chao Ying. Once Yang Guo entered the Ancient Tomb things changed and as they got closer she found it harder to follow the ‘less speech’, ‘less action’, ‘less hapiness’ and ‘less worries’ rules. After their marriage they were separated for 16 years, Yang Guo travelled around and roamed Jiang Hu and missed her terribly. Xiao Long Nu on the other hand was forced to live in this deserted valley and could not totally avoid thinking of him and found herself practicing these principles again to combat her boredom. So when they finally met again it appeared like Yang Guo was older than her.
Xiao Long Nu has not spoken for the past 16 years and now when she started speaking again she was not very fluent. So they did not speak and just stared at each other smiling. Yang Guo could not contain his excitement any longer and took her hand and ran out of the hut, saying, “Long-Er, I’m extremely happy.” He jumped up onto a big tree and sommersaulted several times.
In his excitement he forgot everything and sommersaulted just like he did when he was young in the Ancient Tomb. He never thought about this before and never expected to do something like this as a middle-aged man. The only difference was that his qing gong (lightness skill) was excellent and he could sommersault effortlessly. Xiao Long Nu laughed heartily and cast all the whatever ‘less laughter’ and ‘less happiness’ into the wind.
Xiao Long Nu took out a handkerchief. Yang Guo finished sommersaulting and walked to her grinning. Xiao Long Nu would always wipe his sweat with the handkerchief but now his face was not flushed and he was not breathless, of course he was not sweating. But she wiped his forehead all the same.
Yang Guo took the handkerchief and saw that it was made of tree bark and was rather rough and thought she was having an uncomfortable life here and was very regretful. He stroked her hair gently and said, “Long-Er, you have suffered much these past 16 years.”
Xiao Long Nu sighed and said, “If I didn’t grow up in the Ancient Tomb, the past 16 years wouldn’t have been easy for me.”
They sat shoulder-to-shoulder beside a stone and talked about past events. Yang Guo asked her every single detail. Xiao Long Nu talked for a while and became more fluent, then she slowly narrated her story for the past 16 years.
That day when Yang Guo threw the half-pill down the valley Xiao Long Nu knew he did not want to be left alone as her condition was supposedly fatal. That night she thought carefully and decided to die first and kill off his thoughts of suicide so that he would neutralize the Pasionless Poison. She was afraid that if she left traces of her suicide it would only hasten his own suicide so she thought for half a night and so she finally went to the Heart-Wrenching Cliff and carved the words, purposely making a 16-year long appointment and then she jumped into the valley. At that time she thought that if Yang Guo’s life could be saved, after 16 years he would have forgotten her and dispel his thoughts of suicide.
When she said this, Yang Guo sighed, saying, “Why did you think of 16 years? If you said 8 years wouldn’t we be reunited 8 years ago?” Xiao Long Nu said, “I’m aware of your deep feelings for me and 8 years would be too short to sooth your feelings. Ah, I didn’t expect that even after 16 years you still jumped down.” Yang Guo laughed, “That’s the advantage of having such profound feelings. If I got over you and only cried at the Heart-Wrenching Cliff then went off, I would never see you again.” Xiao Long Nu said, “This is fate.” Both of them came back from death to life and were finally reunited, so they were very thankful for their good fortune.
They felt sad for a while. Yang Guo then asked, “Then what happened after you jumped down?” Xiao Long Nu said, “I was swept sub-consciously into the cave and carried to this place, so I lived here. This place is devoid of animals but there were plenty of fish in the lake and fruits on the trees but there was no cloth so I had to use tree bark to make clothes.”
Yang Guo said, “Then you were struck by the Soul-Freezing Needles and the poison entered your major accupoints, your condition was near-fatal, so how did you get well down here?” Yang Guo looked carefully at her and saw her snow-white face had no traces of blood and the black cloud between her eyes had disappeared.
Xiao Long Nu said, “After I lived here for several days the poison took effect and my whole body was on fire and I almost could not take it, but I remembered that on our wedding night you taught me how to reverse my chi flow on the Chill Jade Bed. It couldn’t neutralize the poison but could relieve the symptoms. The water here is icy cold and the chill could penetrate the bones, so I got back into the water and stayed for a while and found that the effects were amazing. Thereafter I often went to the lake’s bank and looked up, hoping to get some news from you. One day a few Jade Bees flew down to the lake. They were left behind by the Old Imp (Old Urchin or Lao Wan Tong). I treated them like friends and built a few nests for them. Soon they multiplied. I consumed the Jade Bees’ honey and the white fish in the lake and found my discomfort decreasing. So the Jade Bees’ honey and the white fish have anti-poison properties and when consumed as food would increase the time interval of the poison’s reactions. At first it reacted twice a day, then once every few days, then once every few months, then for the past 5 or 6 years it never reacted anymore, so I guess I’m OK now.”
Yang Guo happily said, “So the good will be rewarded with good. That year if you didn’t give the Jade bees to the Old Imp he wouldn’t have brought them here and you wouldn’t be saved.” Xiao Long Nu said, “When I got better, I missed you but the cliff walls were several hundred metres high and were straight and sheer, how could I get up? So I used the torns on the flowers and tatooed the words ‘I’m at the bottom of Loveless Valley’ on the bees’ wings. I tatooed several thousand bees but I got no response so I feared that I would never see you again.”
Yang Guo slapped his leg and said, “I’m too careless. Every time I come to the Loveless Valley I always see the bees but I never caught one to examine it or I could have prevented you from a few years of misery.” Xiao Long Nu laughed, “This is just a plan I used because I couldn’t think of anything else. Actually who would think a bee would have words on its wings? The words are also so small; even if a hundred of them flew past your eyes you wouldn’t notice the words. I was just hoping that a bee might get trapped in a spider’s web and when you see it you would remember our relationship and rescue it, then you would see the words.” What she did not know was that the words were already discovered by Zhou Bo Tong and the meaning deciphered by Huang Rong. (And Zhou Bo Tong did nothing…)
They chated for half a day and Xiao Long Nu went back into the hut to grill a big fish. The lake’s water was very cold and the white fishes were small but tasty and filling. Yang Guo ate the fish and felt some warmth in his stomach, making it very comfortable. He then told her what he did for the past 16 years. He roamed Jiang Hu and did many heroic deeds so his life was more action-packed than Xiao Long Nu who lived in the lonely valley but Xiao Long Nu never bothered about all the action and was contented with just looking at Yang Guo. So she just smiled and listened to his exciting adventures and forgot everything he said soonafter. Yang Guo however was very inquisitive and asked everything, including how she caught the fish and built the hut and showed great interest in every detail, making it seem like the small valley was actually more interesting than the whole world. (I think he was just asking all this to please her, but she’d probably be more pleased to just shut up and stare at him…)
The two of them talked throughout the night and until the next morning before sleeping. They woke up in the afternoon and Yang Guo said, “Long-Er, should we stay here until we’re old or should we go back to the wonderful world?” Xiao Long Nu would have prefered to live here peacefully with Yang Guo but she knew he liked all the noise and excitement. Although she loved him deeply she was reluctant to leave this place so she said, “Let’s go up and take a look, if things are bad out there we can always come back, but… but it’d be difficult to get up.”
They dived back into the lake and went back to the bank. They saw a long rope going all the way up and many random footprints by the bank. There was even a makeshift fireplace which had not died out. Yang Guo said, “Ah, some people came to look for us but couldn’t get past the lake.” He walked around and saw some words carved on a large tree which said, “Yi Deng, Yao Shi, Bo Tong, Ying Gu, Rong, Ying and Wu Shuang couldn’t find Yang Guo so we went back.”
Yang Guo was touched and said, “They’ve not forgotten me.” Xiao Long Nu said, “No one would forget you.” Yang Guo said, “Although they came here, they did not fall into the lake with great speed and hence couldn’t go deep enough to see the underwater cave. If I also came down with a rope, I wouldn’t be able to find you too.” Xiao Long Nu said, “I already said all this coincidence is due to fate.” Yang Guo shook his head and laughed, “This is called ‘With sincerity, one can cut rocks or gold’.”
He tugged the rope to test it and it felt firmly attached, so he said, “Let me go up first to see if that Fa Wang is still there.” But he remembered that Reverend Yi Deng, Island Master Huang and Zhou Bo Tong were all present so Fa Wang must be miles away by now. Then he asked, “Do you still have any martial skills? If you can’t climb, I can carry you up.” Xiao Long Nu smiled, “Although I didn’t improve even slightly for the past 16 years, my still retain much of my old skills.” Yang Guo laughed. He grabbed the rope and jumped, moving several metres a second. Xiao Long Nu followed suit and they got out in no time.
They stood side-by-side at the Heart-Wrenching Cliff and looked at the words carved into the rock face by Xiao Long Nu years ago; it seemed like a lifetime ago to them. They looked at each other and giggled with joy and forgot all their troubles 16 years ago.
Yang Guo plucked a Dragon Girl Flower and placed it in her hair and the colour contrasted with her face beautifully. He could not decide if the flower added vibrance to her or she added beauty to the flower.
Huang Yao Shi was explaining the 28-Star Formation at the top of Xiang Yang’s city wall for the battle with Fa Wang. Guo Jing found Lu Wen De and requested him to give the order for Huang Yao Shi to take command of the soldiers. At this time many of the heroed who attended the Heroes’ Meet had already left, but there were still many able people in the city.
Huang Yao Shi said, “The Mongolians are using 40,000 soldiers to surround the tower. If we use more soldiers to defeat them it wouldn’t require much skill. So we’ll also use 40,000 soldiers. In Sun Zi’s Art of War, using surrounding the enemy when you outnunber him 10 to 1 is no big deal, but it needs some skill to surround the enemy 1 to 1.” He stood on the command post and said, “This 28-Star Formation follows the Five Elements.” He waved the command flag and briefed them. Then he said, “The changes are complex and you can’t be familiar with this in a single day. So for this battle we must appoint 5 skilled martial arts experts familiar with the Five Elements to command the 5 divisions. Everyone are to obey their commands to carry out the formation.” Everyone waited eagerly.
Huang Yao Shi said, “The central division represents Earth and it shall be comanded by Guo Jing with 8,000 troops. Its mission is to rescue Guo Xiang and not to battle the enemy. All the soldiers are to carry a bag of sand on their bags to put out the fire if necessary.” Guo Jing received the order and stood aside.
Huang Yao Shi continued, “The south division represents Fire and it shall be commanded by Reverend Yi Deng with 8,000 troops. 1,000 men will escort the commander and the other 7,000 will be split into 7 battalions commanded by Zhu Zi liu, Wu San Tong, The Boatsman, the Wu brothers, Yelu Yan and Wanyan Ping.” Reverend Yi Deng accepted the command.
Huang Yao Shi continued, “The north division represents Water and it shall be commanded by Huang Rong with 8,000 troops. 1,000 men will escort the commander and the other 7,000 will be split into 7 battalions commanded by Yelu Qi, Elder Liang, Guo Fu and other senior Beggars’ Sect members.” Huang Rong accepted the command. This division was made up mainly of Beggars’ Sect members and all were tried and valiant veterans.
Huang Yao Shi then said, “The east division represents Wood and it shall be commanded by me, Old Heretic Huang, and there shall also be 8,000 men under me. All my diciples are dead with the exception of Cheng Ying and Sha Gu is not present.” So he appointed 6 heroes who attended the Heroes’ Meet to command the battalions in his division. He said, “The east division shall also be divided into 8 battalions of 1,000 men each and 1 battalion will escort me.”
Finally he appointed the west division’s commander, saying, “This division shall be commanded by Quan Zhen Sect Leader Li Zhi Chang…” As he said this, everyone felt that in terms of martial arts, this division’s commander had the weakest martial arts among the 5 divisions. Suddenly someone shouted, “Old Heretic Huang, how could you ignore me?” Everyone turned around and saw Zhou Bo Tong. Huang Yao Shi said, “Brother Zhou, you’re injured, you shouldn’t exert yourself, I orginally wanted to appoint you to this position but…”
Zhou Bo Tong said, “It’s such a minor injury; it’s no big deal. I’ll take it. Zhi Chang, you dare to vie with me?” Li Zhi Chang bowed and said, “I do not.” Zhou Bo Tong laughed, “Good, I knew you wouldn’t dare.” He then took the command token from Li Zhi Chang. Huang Yao Shi just said, “Brother Zhou, be careful. You shall take 8,000 troops and 1,000 of them shall be under Ying Gu to escort you. The other 7 battalions shall be commanded by Li Zhi Chang and other 3rd Generation Quan Zhen diciples. Your division represents Metal.”
After appointing the commanders he ordered the sergeant-major to prepare the weapons and equipment. He then waved his command flag and the 40,000 men got into formation. He shouted, “Legend has it that 28 Celestial Generals subdued the Demons long long time ago. Although we are not some Heavenly Army, we shall repel the invaders and protect our land from the Mongolians or we shall die trying!” Everyone cheered like the thunder and the 5 divisions left the city in all directions.
The west division marched out and each soldier carried a wooden pole on his back and they attacked the tower. 1,000 of them carried shields and warded off the arrows while the remainding 7,000 quickly threw down their poles and quickly built a structure which followed Huang Yao Shi’s diagram based on the Five Elements and Eight Trigrams. Soon they blockaded off the eastern side of the tower.
The west division was made up mainly of Quan Zhen diciples and they were familiar with the Dipper Formation, so their swords flashed like lightning and they formed groups of 7 and platoons of 49 darting left and right, causing the Mongolians to see blurry images and could only fend them off with arrows.
The north division roared and Huang Rong together with the Beggar’s Sect members brought hoses with them and they sprayed poison onto the Mongol troops. The poison caused severe pain and corroded the skin. The Mongols could not take it and retreated south. (Hmmm… Bio weapons…)
The south division appeared through great smoke and the 8,000 troops led by Yi Deng attacked by fire. The soldiers had some sort of fire thrower which spewed out flames at the enemy soldiers. The Mongol troops saw that things were really going wrong and were pushed towards the centre. Guo Jing and his 8,000 troops moved forwards gradually and when they saw the Mongol soldiers thrown into confusion, they charged straight to the tower.
Suddenly an alarm was sounded and many heads popped out from the ground. The Mongols were also well-versed in warfare and they also placed more than 10,000 troops in ambush. Guo Jing saw this and knew it was a trap. The Mongol troops were already in chaos under the onslaught of the 28-Star Formation and the Song troops were about to reach their objective but now they could not advance.
The drums rolled like the rumbling thunder and the Song troops engaged in a bitter fight with the Mongol troops. The soldiers protecting the tower were some of the best archers and their arrows decended like rain and hindered the advance of Guo Jing’s central division. Huang Yao Shi waved his flag and changed the formation; now it was Fire against Wood and Metal against Water.
The 28-Star Formation followed the principles of the Five Elements. The south division’s Yi Deng attacked the centre, Guo Jing’s central division attacked the west, Zhou Bo Tong and the Quan Zhen Sect attacked the north, Huang Rong and the Beggars’ Sect attacked the east and Huang Yao Shi’s division attacked the south. The formation’s status now was : Fire and Earth, Earth and Metal, Metal and Water, Water and Wood, Wood and Fire. The Song regiment only had 40,000 men but the formation was ingenius and the division commanders were highly skilled fighters, moreover the Song soldiers were all grateful towards Guo Jing and Huang Rong, so they risked their lives to save his daughter. Even though the Mongolians outnumber them almost 2 to 1, the Mongolians could not fend them off.
They fought for long and Huang Yao Shi waved his flag again. One division withdrew to the central position, Guo Jing’s division attacked north again, Yi Deng’s division returned south, one division went west and another attacked the east. The formation changed and now the status was : Wood against Earth, Earth against Water, Water against Fire, Fire against Metal, Metal against Wood.
The principles of the Five Elements seem mysterious but was actually discovered when the ancient Chinese people studied the changes of the environment. The principles were derived from the Tao of the Yin and Yang and religious worship, medicine and mathematics etc. all depended on this. This was said to be unique in the whole world. The Mongols were brave and fierce warriors and their fighting skills were excellent but their knowledge of such matters was rather shallow, how could they be a match for someone like Huang Yao Shi? After a few changes, the soldiers guarding the tower became very confused and saw groups of Song troops moving back and forth and they did not know how to deal with them.
Fa Wang was watching the battle from atop the tower and was shocked. A long time ago even Huang Rong’s stone formation gave him much difficulties, now with Huang Yao Shi being 10 times as knowledgable as Huang Rong, how could he understand what was going on? The 28-Star Formation completely awed him and saw that the casulties on his side were increasing rapidly and Guo Jing’s division was getting closer to the tower every second. Although he had Guo Xiang in his power, he was reluctant to burn her alive. He glanced at her and saw that although she was tied up, her head was raised proudly and she showed no fear. Fa Wang said, “Little Guo Xiang, quickly get your father to surrender. I’ll count from 1 to 10, if you don’t surrender I’ll order the tower to be set on fire.”
Guo Xiang said, “If you love to count you can count to ten thousand for all I care.” Fa Wang angrily said, “You really think I won’t burn you alive?” Guo Xiang coldly said, “I just think you’re pathetic.” Fa Wang shouted, “How?” Guo Xiang said, “You can’t beat my father and mother, you can’t beat my grandfather, you can’t beat Reverend Yi Deng, you can’t beat Zhou Bo Tong and you can’t beat my brother Yang Guo. You only have the capablity to tie me up here. I’m just a small fry in Xiang Yang, I don’t deserve such despicable behaviour. Fa Wang, let me give you a piece of advice.” Fa Wang gritted his teeth and asked, “What?” Guo Xiang said, “What use have a person like you got on Earth? Just jump down and go to hell!”
Guo Xiang was already past caring about life and death and she had a razor-sharp tounge and she had never lost an argument. Fa Wang exploded with rage and screamed, “Guo Jing listen up! If you don’t surrender I’ll burn the tower!” Guo Jing said, “Do I look like the sort who will surrender?”
Huang Yao Shi shouted in Mongolian, “Jin Lun Fa Wang, you’re too stupid to beat the enemy; you can only bully small girls; you have no guts to fight us with real weapons. How can such a stupid coward be considered a hero? You were captured by us at the Loveless Valley and you kowtowed to Guo Xiang 18 times and begged her to release you. You’re an ungrateful bastard and you still dare to call yourself the First Protector of Mongolia?”
The part about kowtowing to Guo Xiang is rubbish. Huang Yao Shi was crafty and brilliant and got Huang Rong to translate all the stuff he just said before the battle and he quickly memorized everything. Now he said it with his chi and everyone heard this clearly through the din and Fa Wang did not know how to argue. The Mongolians always respected their warriors and despised cowards; now they heard what Huang Yao Shi said, they looked up the tower with contempt. The 2 armies were fighting intensely when the Mongolians heard that their commander was such a despicable cad, causing their morale to be deflated. The Song troops were all brave and valliant and were now at an advantage.
Fa Wang saw that something was wrong and shouted, “Guo Jing, listen. I’m going to count from 1 to 10. When I shout ‘10’, your daughter shall die! 1… 2… 3… 4…” He paused slightly after every number and hoped that Guo Jing could not take it and be greatly distressed if he did not surrender.
Guo Jing, Huang Yao Shi, Yi Deng and Zhou Bo Tong’s divisions heard Fa Wang counting at the top and saw a few hundred soldiers bearing torches at the foot of the tower, only waiting for the command to set everything alight. Everyone was getting anxious and charging towards the tower for all they were worth. But there were a few thousand archers firing arrows from the tower which severely impeded their advance. Under the rain of arrows, people like the Boatsman, Elder Liang and Wu Xiu Wen were all injured and some 3rd Generation Quan Zhen diciples were killed together with dozens of Beggars’ Sect members. The Song soldiers killed were uncountable.
Before the battle Huang Rong told Guo Fu to take off the Soft Armour and give it to her grandfather. She expected a tough battle and did not want her father to get hurt in the process of saving Guo Xiang. Huang Yao Shi accepted it but secretly took it off and tricked ZBT to put it on. So although ZBT was hit by many arrows he was not injured and he found this ammusing, charging forward and attacking the archers with his palms, causing them to back off.
Then FW shouted, “… 8… 9… 10! Good, burn the tower!” In an instant the base of the tower was engulfed in flames and the thick smoke rose into the air. Guo Jing’s 8,000 soldiers all had bags of sand on their bags but they just could not get near the tower.
Huang Rong saw the thick black smoke and her face turned white and she waved her flag randomly and disorderly. Yelu Qi went forward to support her and said, “Mother-in-law, go behind the formation and rest, I’ll save Sister Xiang even if it costs me my life.”
At this time a thunderous roar came from afar. Many Mongolian soldiers from behind the formation appeared and attacked Xiang Yang from 2 sides. “Long live Your Majesty!” The Mongol Khan was personally commanding the assault and the Mongol troops swarmed towards the city.
Guo Jing was carrying a spear and shield and had already advanced within 100 feet from the tower and the Mongolian archers were unable to hold him off any longer and he looked like he could accend the tower any moment now; suddenly he heard a disturbance at the back of the formation and thought, “Oh no, we’ve been tricked! The city has many soldiers but no able commanders, this is bad!”
When Guo Jing and Huang Yao Shi planned the battle they made sure the city was fully prepared for any sneak attack but the Mongol soldiers at the tower were exceptionally tough and the Khan ignored the battle at the tower and attacked Xiang Yang with his whole entire army. Guo Jing thought, “Saving the city is more important than saving my daughter!” He said loudly, “Father-in-law, let’s not bother about Xiang-Er, we must go back and attack the enemy.”
Huang Yao Shi looked back and saw the smoke rising higher and FW walking down the tower, leaving Guo Xiang alone at the top. He decided that he could not sacrifice the whole city for Guo Xiang and sighed, “Nevermind!” He waved his command flag and the troops headed back to the city.
Guo Xiang was tied on top of the tower and saw that her parents and grandfather were unable to save her and the heat was getting more intense. She knew the fire was spreading quickly and she would be burnt to death soon. She was rather fearful at first but now she calmed down and looked at the beautiful scenery, thinking, “It’s such a fun world, but I’m going to die soon. I wonder where Brother is. Has he come up from the valley yet?”
She thought back to her meeting with Yang Guo and felt her life was not a waste. She was in grave danger but she did not bother about the battle at the foot of the tower. Suddenly there was roar from afar and and sounded like soldiers being killed by the thousands.
Guo Xiang was surprised because the roar was similar to Yang Guo’s roar which cowered the wild animals. She turned her head and saw the Mongol troops on the west and north falling and rolling away from 2 people. The soldiers were being swept aside with a force comparable to the huge waves. Between the 2 people was a large condor and it spread its wings generating a typhoon and the arrows fell harmlessly to the ground on contacting its wings. This bird was fierce and majestic and it was of course Yang Guo’s Divine Condor.
Guo Xiang was overjoyed and saw that one of the 2 people wore a green hat and yellow shirt and was definitely Yang Guo. The other was a beautiful lady who wore a white gown which floated in the wind. The 2 wielded long swords and their swords flashed together gracefully. They followed behind the condor and charged to the tower. Guo Xiang shouted, “Big brother, is this Xiao Long Nu?”
The lady was obviously Xiao Long Nu, but he was too far and did not hear Guo Xiang talking to him. The Divine Condor cleared the path and deflected the arrows effortlessly; its wings were like iron but it was still slightly injured. The Mongol troops had never seen such a fierce and pwerful animal before and tried to stab it but were struck by Yang Guo and Xiao Long Nu’s swords and they fell away.
Yang Guo shouted, “Sister, fear not, I’ll save you.” He saw the lower half of the tower on fire and jumped lightly, reaching the ladder and he quickly climbed up. Suddenly a strong wind generated by a palm struck downwards – it was FW.
The following translation was taken from RoCH 3rd Edition Excerpts by Athena. Edited by IcyFox.
Yang Guo sheathed his sword and used his palm to intercept that blow from Fa Wang. When the two huge forces collided, both of them rocked about and the wooden ladder trembled like it was going to break. Both of them were shocked and praised his opponent, "I haven't seen him for 16 years, I never imagined his internal strength would have increased this much."
Yang Guo saw that the situation was dire and would not allow him to compete palm strenght at the ladder again. He drew his sword again and attacked Fa Wang’s legs. Fa Wang was standing above and if he used his wheels to fight he would have to bend over and that would put himself at a disadvantage. Furthermore his wheels were shorter than the sword, so he turned around and wanted to go up the platform again.Yang Guo raised his sword and attacked him ferociously from the back; every stance was swift as lightning. Fa Wang did not turn around but used his ears to determine where the attacks came from. He used his wheel to block every stance; it was like he had eyes at the back of his head. Yang Guo praised him, "Damn monk! Impressive!"
Fa Wang was standing on top of the platform and immediately retaliated with one wheel. Yang Guo avoided it and counter-attacked with his sword. He dived towards Fa Wang from mid-air. Fa Wang used his golden wheel to block him and his silver wheel was about to strike the blade.
Just a moment ago they exchanged one stance and Yang Guo felt that the palm energy of Fa Wang was solid, robust and stong. He had never encountered such power amongst his former adversaries. He was surprised by this and thought he had trained in the waves of the ocean and felt capable of withstanding the strong forces of tidal waves. 16 years ago Fa Wang was no match for him, but today after exchanging one blow he was almost incapable of withstanding that blast.
Seeing that his wheels were about to make contact with his blade, he did not retract his sword. He wanted to test the internal strength of Fa Wang. The wheels and sword collided with a loud clang. The huge powers collided with each other and Yang Guo’s sword broke into two while the wheels flew out of Fa Wang's hands. The wheels fell to the ground smashing three Mongolian archers. Yang Guo was shocked and thought, "For 16 years I have not used the heavy iron sword, I see that I am too overconfident today."
In order to perform the Jade Maiden Swordsmanship, Yang Guo could not use his heavy iron sword therefore he used an ordinary sword instead. When his blade made contact with the wheels of the Fa Wang it broke immediately.
After exchanging one blow both leapt aside as their arms felt numb. The Fa Wang took out his iron and bronze wheels and attacked again. Yang Guo did not have any other weapon, so he generated his strength to his right sleeve and whisked out. He also used his left palm to attack Fa Wang.
Guo Xiang shouted, "Old monk, I told you before. You’re no match for him! If you're really that powerful, why do you have to use your weapons? Can't you fight him empty-handed? You're a disgrace!" Fa Wang grunted and did not answer but increased the power and speed of his stances.
Huang Yao Shi, Guo Jing and Huang Rong lead their troops back to defend Xiang Yang, but when they saw Yang Guo, Xiao Long Nu and the Divine Condor fighting their way towards the platform they had hopes again of saving Guo Xiang.
Huang Yao Shi waved his command flag and ordered 4,000 soldiers from the east, south, west, north and central divisions forming a total of 20,000 soldiers to return and attack the invading Mongolian troops. The remaining soldiers were to assist Yang Guo in saving Guo Xiang. Although the Song troops were outnumbered but their spirits were raised when they saw Yang Guo on the platform. Each fought 1 against 10 and the Mongoliar archers kept shooting their arrows and held their ground firmly. Each time the Song soldiers advanced forward they were soon pushed back by the uncountable arrows.
The battle at the gates of Xiang Yang was also at its' peak. Governor Lu Wen De was too afraid to lead the armies; he wore his armour and hid in the government office with his two beloved concubines. He was trembling madly and kept stammering, "Merciful Avalokitesvara... please protect m...m...my entire family...Merci... merciful Avalokitesvara..." His two concubines were patting his chest and wiping away his saliva.
The scouts came and reported, "Another 10,000 enemy soldiers have reinforced the attacking troops at the east gate... At the north gate the enemy troops have put up the ladders..."
Lu Wen De rolled his eyes with fear and kept asking, "Is Master Guo back yet? Haven't the Mongolians retreated yet?"
At this moment Yang Guo using one arm had fought more than 200 stances with Fa Wang. Both of their martial arts are quite different from each other and the battle kept intensifying. The entire platform was overshadowed by their wheels and palm. The smoke coming from the bottom of the platform also thickened and soon a black cloud covered the platform. Although Yang Guo was not using a weapon he was not at a disadvantage. Fa Wang felt the platform was shaking lightly and knew that the fire had started to consume one of the pillars of the platform. It would only be a question of moments before the platform would collapse and then he, Yang Guo and Guo Xiang would all die together. Also he saw that the techniques of Yang Guo were very marvellous and feared that after another 100 stances or more he would be defeated by Yang Guo. In this dire situation he attacked Yang Guo's right shoulder with his iron wheel and when Yang Guo was about to avoid that wheel he threw his bronze wheel towards Guo Xiang's face. As she was tied to a pole, it was impossible for her to dodge that wheel.
Yang Guo was terrified and leapt towards Guo Xiang and used his sleeve to whisk the bronze wheel away. However when two experts fought it was uwise to be distracted and Yang Guo's attention was on Guo Xiang, leaving himself unguarded. Fa Wang struck out with his iron wheel the sharp edges were aimed at the left leg of Yang Guo. In mid-air Yang Guo frantically kicked Fa Wang's wrist with his right leg. Fa Wang turned his wheel around and Yang Guo could not avoid this anymore and his right leg was cut. Blood immediately flowed from his wound and his injury was not light. Guo Xiang called out in fear and Fa Wang took out his lead wheel. With two wheels in his hands he attacked Guo Xiang again from the top and bottom. He knew that although Yang Guo was injured he could not overcome him at the moment. So he deliberately launched a fake attack on Guo Xiang and by doing so Yang Guo would try to protect her with all his might. In a few moments Yang Guo was in a dangerous position and could only defend and not attack anymore.
Guo Xiang shouted, "Don't bother about me now! Just kill this old monk to avenge me!" Now Yang Guo called out in pain, his right shoulder was cut again by the wheel.
Xiao Long Nu and the Divine Condor were standing on the ground together with Zhou Bo Tong and they prevented the archers from shooting arrows at Guo Xiang. Her attention was entirely focused on Yang Guo; even when she was killing those soldiers her undivided attention was on Yang Guo. When she saw he was drenched in blood her heart skipped a beat. It was like her soul left her body; the ladder was consumed by the fire and there was no way for her to go up and help. Her mind went blank and she just raised her sword and was unaware where she was and what she was doing there.
Whenever Yang Guo was faced with a great, powerful adversary he would use his Melancholic Sad Palms to defeat his opponent. This style was linked to his state of being but now he was just reunited with Xiao Long Nu and his heart was filled with bliss and happiness. There was not a trace of melancholy or sadness anymore. He was now faced with a dangerous situation and was using this very style. But somehow the flair of melancholy and longing was gone; every move and every stance he made was the same as in the past but the power of it was greatly diminished.
Guo Jing and Huang Rong saw Yang Guo's battle against Fa Wang and saw him being injured, unfortunately they could not rush over to help him. Huang Rong suddenly thought of something and took Yelu Qi's sword and gave it to Guo Jing. She said loudly, "Shoot it over to Guo-Er." Guo Jing took the sword and used two iron bows and placed the sword in between. He aimed and shot the sword towards Yang Guo. A bright flash seared through the sky and a loud whooshing sound was heard.
Yang Guo heard the whoosing sound and used his right sleeve to curl up the sword and immediately used his left hand to wield the sword. He stabbed the sword through the two wheels of Fa Wang. Fa Wang twisted his wheels and the sword was broken again. Everyone saw what happened and was stunned.
Yang Guo knew it was in vain, he could not rescue Guo Xiang he himself, would probably die here as well. He tragically looked at Xiao Long Nu and said, "Long-Er, farewell. Take care..." At this moment Fa Wang used his iron wheel to advance forward, wanting to strike Yang Guo on the skull. Yang Guo had given up all hope, he casually whisked his sleeve and struck out his palm and it smashed Fa Wang directly on the shoulder.
Zhou Bo Tong who was standing below shouted, "Good! One impressive [Entangled by the web of love]." Yang Guo was stunned for a moment and then he realized he was feeling lost and hopless earlier and he unintentionally used the stance [Entangled by the web of love]. The heart is the most important factor of this style - it commands the arm and the arm commands the palm. That day Zhou Bo Tong did not feel the sadness and melancholy in the Hundred Flowers Vally, therefore he could not grasp the essence behind this style. When Yang Guo was reunited with Xiao Long Nu, this style lost its essence. When Yang Guo faced death and parting with Xiao Long Nu the sorrow and melancholy suddenly surged forth in his heart and immediately boosted the power of the Melancholic Sad Palms.
Fa Wang was about to be victorious and suddenly he was hit on the shoulder. His chest hurt greatly and he trembled. He was furious and surprised and instantly attacked again.
Yang Guo backed away and retaliated with [In A State Of Disunity], [Irrational Direction], [The Settled Cessation] and another move quickly followed these three attacks which was the [The Meaningless Wanderer]. This stance was a kick, but it was a most elusive attack. Fa Wang could only vaguely see a leg, it was there but it was not. He could not avoid this kick and he suffered a heavy kick at his chest. He coughed up blood and fell. Both armies yelled, the Song yelled with joy and the Mongolians cried with surprise.
1st / 2nd Edition Ending
By now the tower was crumbling and Yang Guo knew he had no time to untie Guo Xiang so he quickly smashed the pole she was tied to and carried everything – girl, pole and all - and jumped off the tower. The Divine Condor jumped up and they landed on its back. They landed safely only just in time. The tower came crashing down.
Fa Wang was kicked off the platform and was injured but not fatally. He swallowed his pain and rolled away, wanting to get up but suddenly someone laughed and jumped onto his back. He was pinned onto a ground and it seemed like a thousand needles pierced through him. It was Zhou Bo Tong and his Soft Armour was like a porcupine. Fa Wang was severely injured and he could not move. The tower collasped and Zhou Bo Tong leapt away while a huge beam struck Fa Wang on his back.
Huang Rong saw that her daughter had escaped death and was filled with emotion. She was very grateful towards him and was willing to die for him. She quickly ran forward and cut the ropes. Guo Jing, Yi Deng, Huang Yao Shi and Yelu Qi were all greatly impressed.
3rd Edition Alternate Ending
The platform shook greatly now and was about to collapse. If it collapsed entirely now Guo Xiang was bound to die. Suddenly the Fa Wang refound his benevolence and he leapt up and cut the ropes of Guo Xiang using his iron wheel. He took her in his arms and said to her, "Call me Master me one more time." Guo Xiang looked up and saw tears in his eyes and called loudly, "Master!"
Fa Wang shouted, "Yang Guo, catch!"
Yang Guo saw Fa Wang throwing Guo Xiang at him and used his sleeve to catch her and his left arm to tilt her up. He jumped down with her. The Divine Condor spread its' wings and leapt up; although it could not fly but it could leap about 3 or 4 metres into the air. Guo Xiang and Yang Guo landed on the back of the condor and were descending on it. At this time the platform was collapsing and the Condor could not deal with the weight of two persons and fell down. Yang Guo gently pushed Guo Xiang aside and said, "Watch out!"
Guo Xiang performed the technique [The Flying Swallow Circling Away] and touched down. Seeing she was about to be safe, Huang Rong screamed, "Dodge! Faster!"
A heavy burning beam came crashing down towards her. Guo Xiang was shocked and fell down. Huang Rong and Yang Guo wanted to rush over to rescue her but they were too far away, furthermore they were blocked by Mongolian soldiers. Seeing that it was too late Huang Rong fainted.
Guo Xiang had her hands on the ground and wanted to leap away again, but she was trapped by the fiery beam. Her clothes were on fire too and the smoke was choking her. She closed her eyes and awaited death. Suddenly she heard someone landing next to her, she opened her eyes and saw Fa Wang. He was kneeling down with one knee and used his hands to lift the heavy, fiery beam. He generated a large force from his Dragon / Elephant Movement Skill and flung the beam away.
Although the beam was very heavy but his Dragon / Elephant Movement Skill was awesome and he generated every bit of his remaining internal strength which was incredible. The beam flew into the sky like a red blazing dragon. Both Song and Mongol soldiers looked up. The Mongolian soldiers ran away fearing that the beam would land on them. A gap appeared in their formation and Yang Guo helped Huang Rong up and dashed forwards.
Guo Xiang escaped from death and was helping Fa Wang up and she was calling, "Master, master!"
Fa Wang opened his eyes and said, "Good, good! I have finally managed to rescue you..." He coughed up blood and could not finish talking. His blood splattered on Guo Xiang's clothes and she saw that pieces of the platform falling down on them. She tried her best to lift Fa Wang and move him to safety. Yang Guo saw that she could not lift Fa Wang and helped her drag him away from the falling debris. Fa Wang kept coughing up blood and looked at Guo Xiang, he smiled and closed his eyes for the final time. Guo Xiang embraced his body and was devastated, she cried, "Master, master!"
Yang Guo saw Fa Wang sacrificing his own life to save Guo Xiang and so Fa Wang had earned his respect and he bowed to the body.
Huang Rong saw her beloved daughter safe again, she hugged her and tears of joy flowed freely. She was most thankful towards Yang Guo and Fa Wang. Guo Jing, Huang Yao Shi and Reverend Yi Deng were also touched by the actions of Fa Wang and were very grateful to him.
End Of Excerpt
The Mongol soldiers saw that their commander was dead and they were thrown into great chaos. The five divisions attacked them again and this time they were totally defeated.
Guo Jing waved and shouted, “Let’s go back and save Xiang Yang, then kill their Khan!” The Song army cheered and turned around and charged towards the Mongol troops.
Xiao Long Nu tore off some cloth and dressed Yang Guo’s wound. Her hands were trembling and could not speak. Yang Guo smiled, “You suffered more from your worries then I from the fight.” The Song troops gave a thunderous yell and formed up into five divisions again and attacked the Mongol army. Yang Guo saw that the enemy was orderly and unyielding and they outnumbered the Song army many times. Although the Song army attacked them like the mighty waves, they still could not move the enemy.
Yang Guo shouted, “The scum of a Khan isn’t dead yet and the enemy isn’t defeated yet. Let’s fight again. Are you tired?” He spoke the last few words gently and softly. Xiao Long Nu just smiled and said, “You said go then we’ll go.”
Then they heard a young girl say, “Sister-in-law, you’re ravishing.” It was Guo Xiang. Xiao Long Nu turned around and laughed, “Sister, thanks for praying for our reunion. Your brother praised you and dragged me to Xiang Yang to meet you.” Guo Xiang sighed, “Only you are worthy of him.” Xiao Long Nu took her hand and was very friendly to her. Xiao Long Nu was usually cold and indifferent to everyone, but since Yang Guo heaped praises on Guo Xiang and told how she jumped off the cliff to make him promise not to commit suicide, Xiao Long Nu treated her with difference.
Yang Guo ran past some lost horses and said, “I’ll cut a way through. Let’s go together!” He hopped onto the horse and rode off. Xiao Long Nu and Guo Xiang took a horse each and followed behind. The 3 of them galloped south and saw several hundred Mongol soldiers setting up the ladders at the south gate and climbing up like ants.
The 3 of them got onto a small hill and looked around and saw a few thousand Mongol troops surrounding Yelu Qi and his 300 men. The Mongolians used long spears and chopped down on Yelu Qi’s calvary. Guo Fu led a company and attempted to rescue him but was blocked by 2,000 Mongol troops. The couple longed for each other from afar but could not meet. Guo Fu saw that her husband’s troops were decreasing rapidly and her heart sank as she knew that once surrounded by a large army, even a highly skilled pugilist could do nothing.
(Special Edition Ending : Guo Fu got killed by the Mongol soldiers but Yelu Qi was saved by Yang Guo and all the readers are happy… But too bad this part was just made up by me…)
Yang Guo said, “Miss Guo Fu, if you kowtow to me 3 times I will rescue your husband.” Based on Guo Fu’s proud, overbearing and obnoxious behaviour, she would rather die than kowtow to him and admit his superiority. But now she saw that her husband was in grave danger so she did not hesitate and immediately got off her horse and fell to her knees, knocking her head on the ground.
Yang Guo was shocked and quickly dragged her up. He regretted saying that and said, “I’m just talking rubbish, don’t mind me. Brother Yelu and I are close buddies, how can I ignore his plight?” He jumped off the hill and dragged as many horses as he could and formed them up in 2 rows. He mounted a horse and held all the reins in one hand, yelling and charging into the enemy’s formation.
Yang Guo’s 2 rows of horses followed the “Multiple-Horse Formation” orginated from the Song army. However the horses were not trained in this and did not move in a straight path and followed Yang Guo only because he held on to the reins tightly. They galloped through the formation and Yang Guo utilised his advanced qinggong (lightness skill) and was jumping around on the horses’ back. The Mongols have never seen such an awesome riding skill before and their lack of reaction allowed Yang Guo to past through their formation without resistance. Yang Guo grabbed a large banner and erected it on one of the saddles.
The Mongol soldiers shouted and tried to block him but Yang Guo swept the banner and threw 3 officers down their horses. He saw that Yelu Qi was just a few metres away and shouted, “Brother Yelu, jump up!” He thrust out the banner and Yelu Qi jumped, landing on the banner. He mounted a horse and the 2 of them broke out of the encirclement together.
Yelu Qi panted and said, “Brother Yang, thanks for saving me, but my subordinates are still trapped and I don’t want to live without them.” Yang Guo was moved and said, “You go grab a big banner too.” Then he set both banners on fire. Yelu Qi said, “Brilliant!” He went forward and snatched a banner and lit it against Yang Guo’s banner. They shouted and charged into the enemy lines, waving the flaming banners about.
The 2 flaming banners flying around struck fear in the enemy troops. All those who went forward to stop them suffered serious burns. The tide was turning and the Mongol troops had no choice but to retreat. Yelu Qi’s battalion had only about 70 people left and they all charged together, finally managing to break out of the encirclement. Yelu Qi assembled the remnants of his soldiers and took them up to a mountain to rest.
Guo Fu went up to Yang Guo and bowed lowly to him, saying, “Brother Yang, I caused trouble for you my whole life but you’re broad-minded and magnanimous and you returned benevolence for resentment, saving…” Her voice became hoarse and could not continue. Yang Guo had saved her life several times in the past and knew she owed him a debt of gratitude but she was always loathing him, thinking that he was always eager to show off his martial arts and did not really intend to save her. Only now when he saved her husband she felt truly grateful and realised her past mistakes.
Yang Guo hastily returned the bow and said, “Sister Fu, we grew up together, although we quarrelled a lot, we’ve always been close as siblings. If you no longer hate me or despise me I would already be very happy.”
Guo Fu was stunned and the past events flashed past in her mind. She thought, “Do I really hate him? The Wu brothers were always trying to gain my favour but he never bothered about me. If he treated me better I would have been willing to die for him. Why did I hate him without any reason for so many years? Is it because I always think of him and miss him but he never paid any attention to me?”
For the past 20 years, even she did not understand her own heart and always treated him like her enemy but deep in her heart she actually had deep feelings for him. But Yang Guo could not understand her; even she could not understand herself.
Now her hate was gone she suddenly realised that she was actually very concerned about him. She thought, “When he charged into the enemy formation to save Brother Qi, who did I worry for more? I really cannot say.” At this time the clash of the ongoing fierce battle could be heard and she suddenly understood herself, “When he gave Sister Xiang such great presents on her birthday, why did I hate him to the bones? Guo Fu, ah Guo Fu, you’re jealous of your own little sister! He treated Sister Xiang so well but didn’t even acknowledge my presence.”
When she thought about this, her agner flared up again and she stared hard at Yang Guo and Guo Xiang but she woke up, thinking, “Why do I still care about all this? I’m a married woman now and Brother Qi treats me so well!” She gave a long sigh. Although she did not lack anything since young, but deep in her heart she felt a strange void. She always got whatever she wanted but could never get what she really desired most. So in her whole life even she did not know why she was always so hot-tempered and why she was always sulking when everyone was happy.
Guo Fu’s face was red and white as she thought about her heart’s affairs. However Yang Guo, Xiao Long Nu, Guo Xiang and Yelu Qi were all observing the ongoing battle at Xiang Yang. The front line soldiers had already scaled the city wall. Guo Jing and Huang Yao Shi’s army attacked their flank heavily but the Mongol army was too large and their formation remained intact. The Khan had already directed all his forces to attack the city and the defenders inside were getting more disorderly and could not hold the enemy up much longer. Guo Xiang anxiously cried, “Brother, what to do? What to do?”
Yang Guo thought, “I’m fortunate enough to see Long-Er again and Heaven has been very kind to me. Even if I die today I wouldn’t regert it. Dying for one’s country is the greatest honour for a true hero.” He became alert and said, “Brother Yelu, let’s fight the enemy again.” Yelu Qi said, “Nothing could be better.” Xiao Long Nu and Guo Xiang also said, “Let’s go!” Yang Guo said, “OK! I’ll lead and you guys will wield long spears and follow behind.” Yelu Qi relayed the command to his company and everyone grabbed a few spears.
Yang Guo took a spear and jumped onto a horse, galloping off with the Divine Condor running by his side and using its wings to deflect off any incoming arrows. Xiao Long Nu, Yelu Qi, Guo Fu and Guo Xiang followed closely behind. Yang Guo dashed straight to the Khan’s banner. Yelu Qi was shocked and thought since the Khan was personally commanding the attack, all his elite guards must be there protecting him and there were only about 100 Song soldiers with them – this was suicide. Then he remembered his life was saved by Yang Guo and he whould follow him to the end of the Earth.
This company moved extremely fast and reached Xiang Yang city in the blink of an eye. Meng-ge’s (The Khan) guards saw Yang Guo coming swiftly and fiercely towards them and so they sent 200 men to go forth and stop him. Yang Guo threw his spear and it pierced right through a company commander’s chest. He took a spear from Yelu Qi and killed the other company commander. The Mongol guards panicked and Yang Guo tore through their formation. All the soldiers were alarmed and held their weapons tightly and swarmed forward to block him. He threw a spear for every man he saw and killed them instantly. His left arm’s superhuman strength was developed when he trained against the mighty waves at the sea. The spears he threw could pierce rocks, obviously it could fly through flesh and blood. Every throw of his was aimed at an officer and he threw 17 spears, all penetrating the officers’ armour and killing them.
This sudden attack was like a bolt from the blue and the legions of Mongol troops at the foot of Xiang Yang city could not stop him. He shot right through their formation and came right up to the Khan himself.
Meng-ge’s guards dashed forwards to block him, disregarding their lives. A body of armour clashed together and formed a wall in front of the Khan. Yang Guo reached out to take a spear from Yelu Qi but he grabbed thin air and saw that the spear was knocked off by some Mongol warrior. The Khan’s face turned as white as sheet and immediately rode off and Yang Guo shouted, stepped on the horse and leapt up, throwing himself forward. The soldiers stabbed towards him desperately but Yang Guo sommersaulted in mid-air and used his internal strength to snatch all the spears away.
The Khan saw the situation was terrible and quickly whipped his horse and galloped away. The horse he was riding was hand-picked from the best horses from the Mongolian stables and was swift like a dragon and could fly like the wind. It was nicknamed the ‘Flying Cloud Horse’ and was superior to Guo Jing’s ‘Blood-Sweat Horse’. The horse flew on the plains and Yang Guo used his qinggong and tried to chase him. The Mongol troops hurriedly persued behind Yang Guo.
All the soldiers saw this and everyone just stopped fighting to watch what would happen.
Yang Guo saw the Khan riding away and was happy, thinking he could catch up with him. However this ‘Flying Cloud Horse’ was extremely fast and seemed to be gliding along the plains. Yang Guo was getting more anxious as the Khan got further away from him. He quickly bent down to pick up a spear and threw it at the Khan.
The spear flew like a meteor and everyone held their breath in anticipation. The horse galloped even faster and just as the spear was about to hit the Khan it lost its propulsive force and stabbed into the ground. The Song army cursed while the Mongol army cheered.
Now Guo Jing, Huang Rong, Huang Yao Shi, Zhou Bo Tong etc. were too far away and could only stare in desperation. The Mongol army had tens of thousands of troops but they could only cheer the Khan on as they could not catch up with his horse.
Meng-ge looked back and saw Yang Guo getting further and further behind him and was less worried and quickly rode towards a legion. The legion cheered and came forward to welcome him. If he reached them, even with Yang Guo’s skills he would be no match for an entire legion.
Yang Guo was starting to despair when he suddenly thought, “The spear is too heavy and can’t go that far, why not use a stone?” He picked up 2 stones and shot them out forcefully with his internal strength. The stones cut through the air like bullets and they hit the horse in the back. The horse neighed in pain and lifted its legs up, throwing its rider into the air.
Although Meng-Ge was the emperor of the Mongolians, he rode horses and trained in archery since young, just like Genghis Khan and his father, and he conquered the European territories on horse-back. Now he was thrown into the air but he did not panic and steadied himself. He grabbed a bow and hooked his legs firmly onto the horse. He then turned his body and shot an arrow at Yang Guo.
Yang Guo ducked and quickly picked up a larger stone and shot it out with all his strength. The stone flew like a missile, ripped through the Khan and emerged from his chest, shattering on impact. The Khan’s organs were crushed and he fell of his horse dead.
The Mongol army saw their Khan fall from the horse and they were all stunned. Guo Jing immediately gave the command to counter-attack and all the Song troops rushed out from the city. The Song troops formed up in the 28-Star Formation again and attacked the Mongol army. The Mongol army was now in total chaos and they fled without their weapons and trampled on one another. The countless dead lay scattered throughout the plains and the remnants scurried north.
Guo Jing and the Song army persued them but suddenly they saw a Mongol army appear in the west and its formation was orderly and the main banner bore the insignia of Kublai. Both Guo Jing and Kublai knew something was wrong. Guo Jing knew the fleeing soldiers could not have re-grouped so fast while Kublai knew something had happened to the Khan’s army. Kublai quickly ordered a withdrawal. Guo Jing and the Song army persued them for 30 li but could not catch up. Moreover Lu Wen De had sent his officials to summon Guo Jing back to the city. The Song army withdrew as well.
Ever since the Mongols opened the campaign with the Song Empire, they had never suffered such a disastrous defeat – they even lost their Khan in the battle. The Khan did not appoint an heir before his death and all the generals vied for the Khan’s position. Kublai ordered his army back north and battled his brothers. Finally Kublai emerged victor in the civil war and became Kublai Khan. However after the civil war the Mongols did not have enough resources to launch another invasion on the Song Empire. Xiang Yang was safe from the Mongolians until they launched another campaign 13 years later.
Guo Jing led the army back to Xiang Yang and Lu Wen De was waiting at the city gate with the other soldiers and they welcomed the return of the victors. The citizens of Xiang Yang also came out to welcome them with wine.
Guo Jing took Yang Guo’s hand and raised a cup of good wine and offered a toast to Yang Guo, saying, “Guo-Er, you did such a great thing today, from now everyone shall revere and respect you.”
Yang Guo was touched and finally said something he had wanted to say for the past 20 years : “Uncle Guo, my accomplishments today are all due to your guidiance.”
The 2 heroes said no more and drank the wine, thinking there was nothing they could desire.
They entered the city together and the citizens welcomed them with thunderous applause. Yang Guo thought, “More than 20 years ago, Guo Jing took my hand and brought me up Zhong Nan San (Mt. Zhong Nan) and sent me to Chong Yang Palace to learn martial arts. He was completely sincere and honest towards me, yet I rebelled against my teacher created a lot of trouble! If I didn’t correct myself, how would I be what I am today?” He was extremely satisfied with himself.
The city was in a joyous mood although many have lost their fathers, brothers, husbands and sons because their victory was complete.
Night fell and a large banquet was thrown for the heroes. Lu Wen De wanted Yang Guo to be the Guest-of-Honour but he refused flatly. Everyone pushed to each other for a long time and they finally persuaded Yi Deng to be the Guest-of-Honour. Seated next to him was Zhou Bo Tong, followed by Huang Yao Shi, Guo Jing, Huang Rong, Yang Guo, Xiao Long Nu and Yelu Qi. Lu Wen De thought, “Island Master Huang is Hero Guo’s father-in-law but that old monk Yi Deng’s appearance is not remarkable while that old man Zhou is crazy and silly, how can either of them be the Guest-of-Honour?” However everyone was overjoyed and ignored him.
All the generals and officials took turns to offer toasts to Guo Jing and Yang Guo and praised them to be heroes of the highest order.
Guo Jing then thought of his master’s kindness and said, “If not for Quan Zhen’s Priest Qiu’s righteousness and my seven masters who went to Mongolia to teach me martial arts, and not forgetting Master Hong, how would I be so highly-skilled today? But as we indulge in wine today, all my masters with the exception of Master Ke are already dead.” Everyone felt rather sad. Guo Jing continued, “Now we have won the day, I would like to accend Mt. Hua (Hua Shan) tomorrow and visit my master’s grave.” Yang Guo said, “Uncle Guo, I was thinking of this too, why don’t all of us go together?” Yi Deng, Huang Yao Shi and Zhou Bo Tong all missed their old friend and so they agreed.
The banquet lasted late into the night before ending.
END OF CHAPTER 39
Last edited by IcyFox; 01-15-06 at 01:31 AM.
Oh ... This is not a complain by any means sorry if it looked likeOriginally Posted by Felipe
I was just kidding saying these were Icyfox's most long two pages, 'coz he was torturing us bit by bit stopping last post on a cliffhanger then he said...
...comming next: guo fu kowtowing
... only 4 pages remaining now...
... only 2 pages remaining now...
something like that I was getting crazy... when he said only 2 pages remaining I kept comming here compusively LOL...
I'm very greatful for all the translators's hardwork. Thanks
edit: After reading...
Wow!!! such an exciting chapter!! thank you a lot IcyFox!!!!!
Last edited by Felipe; 01-15-06 at 03:07 AM.
Kowtows to the translators 3 times. Thanks herds! One more to go and the rest of the unfinished chapters.
rayon, are you going to finish chapter 25 or not.
Let us know if you're not going to and maybe someone else will.
I think the worst of the brain torture is over! I've started Bee Dreamers translations!
Yipee! They won against the Mongols for the time being. Even in the desperate yet had to win battle. Nevertheless, it still bought some time for the Hans to actually strenghten teir position for 13 years. But..................... why was the Song dynasty still overthrown by them? Guess I must read the history books and further more into the book!
I am living in exile, waiting for a little ray of hope to bring me back to where I belong.
CHAPTER 40 – THE SUMMIT OF HUA SHAN
Translated by Foxs. Edited by IcyFox.
Early the next morning Guo Jing and the others quietly left Xiang Yang for Mount Hua (Hua Shan). They avoided the troops and the people’s festive farewell. They walked slowly since Zhou Buo Tong, Lu Wu Shuang, the Wu Brothers and the Boatsman still had not recovered from their injuries. They covered only less than a hundred li everyday. By the time they arrived at Mount Hua, those who were injured had already recovered.
Yang Guo showed them Hong Qi Gong and Ouyang Feng’s graves, which were side by side. Immediately they performed the ceremony. Huang Rong had purchased the supplies on the way, just at the foot of the mountain.
Guo Jing did not want to show respect toward Ouyang Feng’s grave. He still remembered how his five masters died under the Western Poison’s hands. True, it had been decades ago, but he could not forget it. Yang Guo was different. Together with Xiao Long Nu they knelt in front of Ouyang’s grave. Zhou Bo Tong only clasped his fists in front of the grave and said, “Old Poison, Old Poison! You committed countless crimes in your lifetime. And after you died, your grave is right next to the Old Beggar’s. I’ll say you are very lucky! Today everybody else is kneeling in front of the Old Beggar, except these two kids. If you knew this, you would probably regret your ruthlessness!”
Everybody was amused to hear the Old Imp’s (Old Urchin or Lao Wan Tong) jabbering.
They were about to eat dinner after the ceremony when suddenly they heard distance sound of weapons clashing and people cursing. Zhou Bo Tong was always ready to have fun. He was the first to run toward the battle noise. The others followed behind.
After a couple of bends the path led them to a plateau. There they saw about thirty to forty people battling each other. Some were short, some were tall, some were old, some were young, and there were priests, monks, men and women. They did not pay any attention to the newcomers. Perhaps they thought these newcomers were tourists or pilgrims.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, hold on a moment!” finally a big burly man shouted. “Fighting chaotically like this will not determine who will be the ‘Number One Valiant Hero under the Heaven’. Let us take turns and fight. Whoever wins last shall hold the title.”
“That’s right!” said a priest with long whiskers. “There were Swords Meets on Mount Hua then. Why don’t we do the same? Let us see who will win.” That proposition was unanimously accepted.
“All right, who will go first?” Several people stepped forward.
Bo Tong and the others looked on. They did not know who these people were.
When the first Swords Meet on Mount Hua was held, Guo Jing was not even born yet. The Eastern Heretic, Western Poison, Southern Emperor, Northern Beggar and Central Divinity were fighting for the Nine Yin Manual. In the end the Central Divinity won the title of ‘Number One Valiant Hero under the Heaven’.
The second Swords Meet on Mount Hua was held twenty years later. Wang Chong Yang, the Central Divinity had passed away then. Other than Eastern Heretic, Western Poison and Northern Beggar, Zhou Bo Tong, Qiu Qian Ren and Guo Jing also attended. This time there was no clear winner. Who would have guessed that after decades there was the third Sword Meet on Mount Hua, with unknown people as contestants? Therefore, Huang YaoShi and the others were bewildered.
Immediately they saw six people fought in three pairs. As soon as they fought, Huang Yao Shi and the other were laughing, even the composed Reverend Yi Deng smiled. We don’t need to compare them with the experts; they were far inferior even to Guo Fu or Guo Xiang.
Hearing the laugh, the six people stopped the fight, leaped back and somebody barked, “You reckless bunch! Your masters are having a contest here, and you are laughing there? Go away, we have mercy on you!”
Yang Guo laughed and whistled loudly. His voice echoed throughout the valley. Those people were shocked, they were scared to death and throwing away their weapons, they scrambled away.
“Ladies and Gentlemen! Engarde!” Yang Guo shouted.
Those people looked up, screamed and ran away. Somebody shouted indistinctly, “Go! Go away! That was the Condor Hero!” A moment later the plateau was empty. Cheng Ying, Guo Fu and the others chuckled.
“There are useless people out there, but I wouldn’t dream they dared to hold a Swords Meet on Mount Hua,” Huang Yao Shi sighed.
“There were Five Experts,” said Zhou Bo Tong. “With the death of Western Poison, Northern Beggar and the Central Divinity, who could take their places?”
With the Five Experts Zhou Bo Tong meant Eastern Heretic, Western Poison, Southern Emperor, Northern Beggar and Central Divinity. Among them only Eastern Heretic Huang Yao Shi, and Southern Emperor Reverend Yi Deng left.
Huang Rong chuckled, she said, “Reverend Yi Deng and my father have always improved their skills. Therefore, they were among the Five Experts then, they should be now. Frankly speaking, my husband has inherited Northern Beggar’s skills; he is one of the Experts. Guo-Er is young, but his martial arts are extraordinary. He is unmatched in his generation, plus he is Ouyang Feng’s adopted son. Therefore, he deserves to be one of the Experts so he inherits Western Poison’s title.”
Hearing her Zhou Bo Tong shook his head. “No, it’s not right!” he said.
“Why not?” Huang Rong asked.
“Because Western Poison is venomous, while this kid Yang Guo is not! How could we call him ‘Western Poison’?”
“Well, Brother Jing is not a beggar!” Huang Rong laughed, “While Reverend Yi Deng is not an emperor anymore. I think we’d better modify their titles a little bit. Father is the Eastern Heretic. It is a trademark; no modification is necessary. Reverend Yi Deng has become a monk, let us call him the Southern Monk. Now, about Guo Er, I’d like to propose a title, ‘Passionate’. How’s that?”
(Note : There are many different interpretations and debates concerning this title. I just used one of them.)
Huang Yao Shi was the first to say, “Eastern Heretic and Western Passionate, old and young. Yes! This is a good title.”
“Pardon me,” said Yang Guo, “I am too young, I do not dare to be compared with the Seniors …”
“Ha ha... Little Brother!” said Huang YaoShi. “You are wrong! You are called ‘Passionate’, why can’t we act it out for a moment? Besides, your name, your skills, don’t they exceed those of the Old Urchin?”
Huang Yao Shi understood Huang Rong’s intention. She did not mention the Old Urchin’s name to provoke him. Yang Guo also understood father and daughter’s intention. He exchanged glances with Xiao Long Nu; they both laughed. He thought, “This word ‘Passionate’ is so appropriate …”
“Southern Monk and Western Passionate have been settled. How about the Northern Beggar?” asked BuoTong.
“I propose the word ‘Hero’, hence the Northern Hero,” said Zhu Zi Liu. “The valiant people of this era call Brother Guo Jing as Great Hero Guo [Guo Da Xia]. He did a great service for his country. He defended Xiang Yang for decades, he protects the people and secured the peace. His valiance is superior to Zhu Qi or Guo Gai of the yesteryear. I believe it is very appropriate to call him the ‘Northern Hero’.”
“Agreed!” Reverend Yi Deng, Wu San Tong and the others voiced their support.
“Eastern Heretic and Western Passionate, Southern Monk and Northern Hero, we have four experts,” said Huang Yao Shi, “What about the Central? Who deserves to hold the title?” He cast a glance to Bo Tong, but he continued, “Madam Yang is the only heir of the Ancient Tomb Sect [Gu Mu Bai]. I reckon it is appropriate for her to hold the title! When she was still alive, Heroine Lin ChaoYing had roamed the Jianghu, even Wang Chong Yang held her in the highest regard. Who does not know the Jade Maiden Swordplay from the Ancient Tomb Sect? If Heroine Lin ChaoYing attended the Swords Meet at Mount Hua, not only the titles of the ‘Five Experts’ would have changed, but the title ‘Number One Valiant Person under the Heaven’ would be hers. Yang Guo’s skill was acquired from his wife. If the disciple is one of the experts, can we question the master? Therefore, Madam Yang deserves to hold the Central position in place of the Central Divinity!”
Xiao Long Nu laughed. “I really don’t deserve it,” she said.
“If not, Huang Rong should be one of the experts,” Huang Yao Shi continued. “She is still inferior in term of martial arts skill, but she is intelligent and smart. Wasn’t there a saying that ‘brain over brawl’?
“Good, good!” Bo Tong clapped his hands. “What is Eastern Heretic? What is Great Hero Guo? I am not happy will all those. This little girl Huang Rong is different. She is so smart. I, the Old Imp, got a headache whenever I dealt with her. My limbs are weak, I cannot move! She should become one of the Five Experts; nobody deserves better!”
Hearing him, everybody was amazed and impressed. They knew Zhou Bo Tong liked to fool around but he had a big heart. Others deliberately did not mention his name to provoke him. Who knew he was really naïve? He did not have any intention to boss anybody about; he did not desire fame.
“Old Imp, you are great!” said Huang Yao Shi. “For me fame is nothing. For Reverend Yi Deng, it is emptiness. You are not like that. Your heart is free. You are superior to us. Because we have already had Eastern Heretic and Western Passionate, Southern Monk and Northern Hero, you should hold the Central position, you are the Central Imp!”
Huang Yao Shi’s speech was applauded by loud cheering and clapping. Everybody was happy; they were having a good time.
Yang Guo pointed to the Jade Maiden Peak. “Our sword technique is called Jade Maiden Swordplay. We cannot miss a visit to the peak,” he said to Xiao Long Nu.
“That’s right,” answered his wife. Holding hands they climbed the peak.
On the peak there was a small temple with a statue of a horse next to it. It was the Jade Maiden Temple. Inside the temple was a big rock - its center was hollow. It contained clear water. Yang Guo had climbed Mount Hua before, and Hong Qi Gong had explained to him the points of interest of the mountain. He pointed to the rock and told Xiao Long Nu, “This is the water basin of the Jade Madien. This clear water never dries up all year long.” Xiao Long Nu nodded. “Let us go to the hall to pay our respect to the Jade Maiden,” she said.
Yang Guo complied. They went to the hall. There was a statue of a very beautiful woman. She looked so dignified. What amazed them was that the face of the statue bore a close resemblance to the statue of Lin ChaoYing inside the Ancient Tomb.
“Could it be that the Jade Madien is actually our Grand Martial Master?” asked the wife.
“Very possible,” answered Yang Guo. “Grand Martial Master Lin liked to wander around. She had helped many people. It could be that some people remembered her kindness and built this temple.”
“That’s right. If it were a Jade Madien, how could there be a horse here? Looks like Grand Martial Master roamed around riding a horse.”
The two of them then knelt in front of the altar. They prayed silently for protection and happiness as husband and wife.
At that time they heard footsteps coming near from outside. They turned their head and saw Guo Xiang.
“Little Sister, let us look around together!” Yang Guo was delighted. “Oh yes!” answered Guo Xiang.
Xiao Long Nu held her hand and together they left the hall. They walked on a long stony path and climbed to a big cave. Guo Xiang looked inside the cave, she felt cold breeze coming from the cave and she shivered. The cave was like a deep well, one could not see its bottom. It was different from the one at the Passionless Valley; it looked scary.
“Be careful,” Xiao Long Nu warned her, holding her hand.
“I heard the water of this cave flows to the Yellow River [Huang He],” said Yang Guo. “It is one of the eight Water Palaces in China. During the Tang Dynasty there was a draught in northern China. The Reverend Tang San Zhang wrote a letter to Heaven, asking for rain. He threw the letter down this cave.”
“From here flowing to the Yellow River, how peculiar!” said Guo Xiang.
“Well, it was a legend!” Yang Guo chuckled. “Nobody has ever gone down this cave. Who would prove it?”
“When the Reverend Tang San Zhang threw his jade board letter, did Concubine Yang stand next to him?” asked Guo Xiang. “Did it really rain?”
Yang Guo laughed. “How can I answer your question?” he said, “Whether it rained or not, that was the Heaven’s decision. Even a king could not force its will …”
Guo Xiang looked at the cave, she softly said, “That’s true, even a king could not have everything his heart desires …”
Yang Guo was amazed to hear her said that. “This girl is still young, but she is mature,” he thought. “I must try to make her happy.” He was going to open his mouth when suddenly Xiao Long Nu said, “Ah, who’s that coming our way?” She pointed her finger away.
Yang Guo turned around. Under the steps there were two people stealthily creeping nearer. Xiao Long Nu’s eyes were really sharp; she could see them in the dim light of dusk.
“Their skills are not bad,” said Yang Guo softly, “Judging from their movement, they must have some ulterior motive. Let’s hide and see what’s going on.”
Xiao Long Nu and Guo Xiang complied. They hid behind a big rock next to a big tree. Not too long they could hear footsteps approaching. It was evening, the moon had risen.
Guo Xiang stood next to Xiao Long Nu. She did not care about those two men, she looked at Yang Go and thought in her heart, “If only I could be like this forever, being with Big Brother and Sister Long, I would desire nothing else …” She wanted the time to stand still and stop passing…
Xiao Long Nu inadvertently looked toward her direction and she saw tears welled up in her eyes; she was puzzled. She thought, “This is strange, what is she thinking about? I’ll talk with my husband later and see what we can do to make her happy.”
Actual beginning of HSDS.
Most TV adaptations cut this part out. Basically it introduces Zhang San Feng and the Jiu Yang Zhen Jing (Nine Yang Manual).
(This part was translated verbally by my friend IcyBlade but I didn’t take it down so I may not have remembered everything correctly.)
However Yang Guo said loudly, “We had great times together in Jianghu, we shall chat over a cup of wine when we meet again. Let’s part here.” He put on a cape, held Xiao Long Nu’s hand and walked down the mountain together with the Divine Condor.
The moon could be seen though it was day, the breeze stirred the leaves, the birds chirped cheerfully but Guo Xiang could not hold back her tears and the tear drops fell to the ground.
“The autumn wind is soothing, the fallen leaves clump together, the birds go south for the winter. When can they meet again; the time is hard to decide.”
END OF STORY.
THE RETURN OF THE CONDOR HEROES.
Last edited by IcyFox; 01-02-07 at 01:00 AM.
RoCH is completed, finally! (Well, sort of...)
Don't worry about Chap 34... It's nearing completion... (In fact I was even sent a Sneak Preview of it... )
Anyway, some background notes for the part skipped in Chap 40:
Yin Kexi and Xiao Xiang Zi had stolen the Jiu Yang Zhen Jing (Nine Yang Manual, the one Zhang Wuji learnt the Jiu Yang Shen Gong from) from Shaolin Temple. Zhang Jun Bao (Zhang San Feng) and his master Jueyuan are sent to get it back. Yin Kexi and Xiao Xiang Zi somehow ended up on Mt Hua and hid the manual in a gorrilla (check HSDS for details). The 4 people bumped into the newly installed Greats and co. and Zhang Jun Bao fought the 2 goons to get their manual back. He was obviously losing (after all he was just a teenage Shaolin monk) and Yang Guo gave him some hints to get the better of the 2 of them.
After that they left, YG left, everybody left and Guo Xiang went home crying. That's about it.
Last edited by IcyFox; 09-16-06 at 08:10 AM.
Sigh .... ! heavy sigh ...!
This story is winding up. Thanks IcyFox. I am happy and sad at the same time.
Now, about the rest of Chapter 40, I've done most of it, and sent it to Elfyhead. Let's just hope he/she will finish it, as the icing on top of the cake, or like a cherry on top of a cup of ice cream.
Awesome! I really can't believe the ROCH translation is/will be finished. Translators, thank you for all your hard work!
Thanks so much for finishing the story! I loved it from beginning to end!
This is one of Jin Young's best works (well I liked it ^_^), so thanks for translating it. You kept us in total suspense there.... I hope you translate other novels like DGSD...
Here are some pictures of RoCH taken from all over the Web...
Hope you enjoy them.
My book has this little footnote (or a disclaimer, allegedly by Jin Yong himself) on the death of Mengke Khan. I thought you might want to know. To the editor, it is up to you to include this small footnote or not. I did not change names; they are as they appeared in my book, except for Mengke (reference: http://countrystudies.us/mongolia/18.htm ). I would appreciate any help with the pinyin, so that I can persuade our editor (James) to include it on the Chapter.
According to the book Yuan-shih:
Mengke’s title was Hian Cong. He was the firstborn of Tuli who was titled Yong Cong. On the second month of the ninth year (phia-cu) he led his troops to surround a city, attacking all its gates, scaling up the walls, killing a lot of Song’s troops. However, even though it was attack forcefully, the city stood its ground. Then in the (kui-hay) year, he suddenly passed away. He was on the top of his years; was a quiet man, he spoke very little. His rules were strict.
According to the book Shu Tung Chin Kao I:
Because his troop movement was detained too long, the Emperor Hian Cong had fallen ill and eventually died.
According to the book Chungking Chih:
The Emperor Hian Cong had died while attacking the city Chungking. Whether he died by a stone or not, the notes were unclear. One fact remain, that the Battle of Xiang Yang was the fiercest. The city stood its ground under decades of fierce attack from the Mongols.
Therefore, to make this story more interesting, Xiang Yang was made the place where Mengke died; which made that city free from Mongols attack. This is not a historical fact, and the writer (Jin Yong) merely used the event as a historical background to the story.
Last edited by fox-s; 01-15-06 at 10:33 PM.