Thanks. Just a quick update: my son has obtained clearance from the doctor, so he can go back to school. His stress test came back good, we still have to see the cardiologist next week, but the doctor says we only need to pay close attention, and should not be concerned.
Placing her left hand on her martial sister's shoulder for support, Zhou Zhiruo shook her head. Ding Minjun had suffered pain from the peasant girl, she knew the peasant girl was very fierce. It was just that their Shifu often praised this young martial sister, saying that her perception was wonderfully deep, her progress was amazingly rapid. She would most likely play a very important role on the advancement of their Sect in the future. It was hard for Ding Minjun to accept, therefore, she told her to give it a try, with the hope that she would also suffer some pain under the peasant girl's hands. Seeing her Shimei was able to fight the peasant girl for more than twenty stances without suffering any defeat, which exceeded her by a large margin, Ding Minjun was very jealous in her heart.
Feeling the hand leaning on her shoulder was without any strength, she knew her Shimei's injury was not light. Afraid that the peasant girl would attack, she said hastily, "Let's go!" Supporting each other, the two of them walked toward northeast.
The peasant girl noticed Zhang Wuji's expression. "Ugly freak," she said with a cold laugh, "Seeing a beautiful girl makes your soul fly to the heavens."
Zhang Wuji wanted to explain, but he thought, "I won't be able to explain this matter clearly without revealing my history. I might as well not say anything." Thereupon he said, "Whether she is beautiful or not, what does that have anything to do with me? I was concerned about you, I was afraid you might be injured."
"Are you telling me the truth?" the peasant girl asked.
Zhang Wuji thought, "Actually, I was concerned about both of you." He said, "Why would I lie to you? I am surprised that such a young girl from Emei Pai can possess such an excellent martial art skill."
"Fierce! Very fierce!" the peasant girl said.
Zhang Wuji turned his gaze toward Zhou Zhiruo’s back, thinking that she came with light and graceful steps but left staggering. He remembered how on the boat on the Hanshui River she helped feed him, gave him towel to wipe his tears. He wished her injury was not heavy.
Suddenly the peasant girl laughed coldly and said, “You don’t have to be worried, she was never been injured. When I said ‘fierce’, I was not talking about her martial art skill, but she is such a young girl, yet her quick thinking and scheming ability is this fierce.”
“She was not injured?” Zhang Wuji wondered.
“That’s right!” the peasant girl said, “When my palm hacked on her shoulder, her shoulder produced internal energy reaction, which diverted my palm. Turns out she has trained the Emei Jiu Yang Gong [Nine Yang energy/power], with which she shook my arm that it went slightly numb and painful. Where did her injury come from?”
Zhang Wuji was greatly delighted; he thought, “Could it be that she is highly favorable in Miejue Shitai’s eyes that unexpectedly she passed on the Emei Pai treasured skill, Emei Jiu Yang Gong, to her?"
Suddenly the peasant girl heavily slapped Zhang Wuji's face with the back of her hand. Her action was so sudden that Zhang Wuji was caught off guard and his cheek turned red and swollen at once.
"You ... why did you do that?" he angrily asked.
The peasant girl hatefully said, "Seeing that beautiful girl, your soul fly to the heavens. I said she was not injured, why are you this happy?"
"I am happy for her, what does it do to you?" Zhang Wuji replied.
The peasant girl swung her palm again, but this time Zhang Wuji ducked that she missed. The peasant girl angrily said, "You said you are going to take me as your wife. It is still less than half a day and you already changed your mind as soon as you saw that pretty girl."
"You have said it early on that I am not fit to marry you," Zhang Wuji retorted, "You also said that your heart has already belonged to this boyfriend of yours, so you cannot marry me."
"That's right," the peasant girl said, "But you have promised me that you will treat me well for the rest of our lives, that you will take a good care of me."
"Of course I will keep my promise," Zhang Wuji said.
The peasant girl was angry. "If that's the case, why did you lose your soul as soon as you saw this good-looking young woman? That is very aggravating to those who look at you."
Zhang Wuji laughed. "I did not lose my soul," he said.
"I forbid you to like her," the peasant girl said, "I forbid you to even think of her."
"I've never said I liked her," Zhang Wuji said, "But why do you always have another in your heart, and never forget him?"
"I met him first," the peasant girl said, "If I know you first, then all my life I would be good to you only, and would not think about other people. This is called 'faithful unto death' [Confucian ban on widow remarrying]. The Heaven will not tolerate a double-minded person."
Zhang Wuji thought, "I knew Zhou family girl long before I met you." But it was inappropriate for him to say so, thereupon he said, "If you are good to me only, then I will be good to you only. If you remember another in your heart, I will also remember another in my heart."
The peasant girl was silent for half a day. Several times she seemed to open her mouth to speak, but each time she stopped. Suddenly tears started to flow from her eyes. She turned around so Zhang Wuji would not see her wiping her tears with her sleeve.
Zhang Wuji could not bear to see her crying. He grabbed her hand and said in a soft voice, "Why did we say these things without any reason at all? In a few more days my legs will be healed, and then the two of us will travel everywhere to have fun, won't that be great?"
The peasant girl turned her head; with an anxious look on her face she said, "Ahniu Gege, I want to ask you one thing, but you must not get angry."
"What is it?" Zhang Wuji asked, "As long as it is within my power, I will do it for you."
"You must promise me not to get angry first before I tell you," the peasant girl said.
"Alright, I won't," Zhang Wuji promised.
The peasant girl hesitated for a moment before saying, "With your mouth you said you won't get angry, but I also want you not to be angry in your heart."
"Alright, I also will not be angry in my heart," Zhang Wuji said.
The peasant girl flipped her hands so that she was holding Zhang Wuji's hands now. "Ahniu Gege," she said, "The reason I travelled for tens of thousands 'li' from the Central Plains to this remote Western Region was to look for him. Before, I still heard news about him; but as soon as I arrived here, he vanished just like a stone sank in the ocean and I have never heard anything about him anymore. After your legs are healed, help me to find him, and afterwards I will accompany you roaming the mountains and playing on the rivers, will that be alright?"
Zhang Wuji could not restrain from feeling unhappy. "Humph," he snorted.
The peasant girl said, "You promised me not to get angry; aren't you angry right now?"
Feeling uncomfortable, Zhang Wuji said, "Alright, I'll help you find him."
The peasant girl was delighted. "Ahniu Gege," she said, "You are very kind." Looking toward the distant horizon, her heart was beating fast with the memory of 'him', she said quietly, "When we find him, he will know that I have been looking for him for such a long time that he won't be angry with me. I will do whatever he says, I will obey whatever he tells me to do."
Zhang Wuji said, "Tell me, what is so good about this boyfriend of yours that you always keep him in your mind like this?"
The peasant girl smiled slightly and said, "How can I explain how good he is? Ahniu Ge, do you think we will be able to find him? When he sees me, will he beat me, scold me?"
Seeing how childish her affection was, Zhang Wuji could not help but feel sorry for her. He said in a low voice, "I don't think so. He will not beat you or scold you."
The peasant girl's cherry lips quivered; tears welled up in her eyes. Also in a low voice she said, "That's true, he will love me and pity me that he won't beat me or scold me anymore."
Zhang Wuji thought, "This girl loves her boyfriend this much. If only there was someone in this world who loves me and misses me like her, I will be happy even if I have to suffer more hardships and pain." He turned his gaze to the pair of footprints Zhou Zhiruo and Ding Minjun left on the snow, thinking, "I wish Ding Minjun's footprints were mine; if I could walk side by side with Miss Zhou ..."
"Aiyo!" suddenly the peasant girl called out, "Let's go, quick! It will be too late if we tarry."
"What?" Zhang Wuji was awakened from his daydreaming.