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Thread: Magic Sword, Sentimental Flower (幻劍情花) - Yun Zhongyue

  1. #21
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    you're Da Best white...
    Gonna keep waiting for the next chapter....

  2. #22
    Senior Member whiteskwirl's Avatar
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    Hey everybody! No update on the story today, but I have something else for you: a video of the author himself!

    Below is a short memorial video featuring Yun Zhongyue, the author of this novel I'm translating. He passed away in 2010, but in the video we can see and hear him talking about his work, and we get to see his study where he wrote as well. I added the subtitles myself. It was a quick job, but hopefully it makes sense. Enjoy!

    Make sure the "CC" button is on on the youtube video to see the subtitles/captions!



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    Thanks whiteskwirl

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    You're welcome everyone who has said thanks. I appreciate your readership. I'm a bit behind on translating but I should have another update today or tomorrow.

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    Default Chapter 2, part 3

    Here is part 3 for your viewing pleasure. The next update after this will finish chapter 2. Enjoy!



    Chapter 2: Little Tyrant
    Part 3



    The Zhuang family had several shops in the prefectural city, Clear Water Xiang shop the largest. It sold locally-produced products to the Guangdong and Guangxi regions, the ships loaded in Hengzhou.

    The Zhuang family had an agreement with the shipping companies, their storehouses frequently piled with goods.

    Yixin had his own matters to attend to, so he only dallied in the shop a short while before leaving his brother with the manager to arrange things.

    There were a lot of small jobs to do around the shop, and dealing with customers was no simple matter, it could be quite complicated. One must be patient and flexible in handling affairs in order to do it well.

    The shop stayed busy until around the hour of the monkey[1], and the manager always had several clerks to help him.

    He didnt plan to live at the shop,, so before dark every day he had to go out of the city. Just as he was preparing to leave, a clerk entered the accounts office and said, Young Master, theres a man here named Liu come to see you. Hes waiting in front of the shop, do you want me to bring him in?

    He was confused, how could there be someone looking for me? As far as he knew, he didnt have any friends or acquaintances with the surname Liu, but how could a shop not receive a guest?

    He rose and said, Hurry and see him to the reception room.

    He thought about having the manager go to meet the guest with him, but he refrained.

    He had been back home for only a few days, and this was his first day on the job, so to have someone suddenly show up to see him surprised him.

    The reception room was where clients were received and business was discussed, and when he arrived he instructed a clerk to prepare tea. At the door to the reception room was a middle-aged man with an honest face.

    He was surprised, but he put on a smile and welcomed the guest and instructed the two attendants there to leave, and he personally served the tea, and said happily, Master, youyour complexion is not very good, here, have some tea. Master, how did you know your disciple was at this shop?

    The guest sat down and accepted the tea, and nodded. You can tell its me straight away, and can also tell my complexion is bad, my appearance changing skill is really of no use.

    The guest was none other than Mystical Freak Qiu Lei, who had escaped with his life from Zhurong Peak.

    I could tell from your eyes, Yiping said with a smile.

    So, I want you to work hard practicing the secret of changing your expression and how to change your eyes.

    Your disciple has already made some headway in that regard.

    Your teacher is lucky to have escaped death, at present my skills have been depleted by half.

    Yiping was shocked. He shot up and asked quickly, Master, what happened?

    Sit down, dont get so worked up!

    Mystical Freak looked at him with disapproval. No matter how incredible the situation, you mustnt get your mind so agitated. Getting worked up like that can speed up the flow of your qi, and when your qi speeds up your strength will decrease, and you will lose the power to handle a sudden change.

    I was wrong. He sat and regained his composure. But, Master definitely encountered something terrible, its hard for me not to get anxious.

    Anxious about what? Im not dead! You just cant control yourself! Mystical Freak laughed and drank his tea. Kid, you remember at the beginning of last year when we traveled to Huaian, and that matter with that damn Yan, the head of the salt commission?

    I remember. That cursed creature controlled Zhejiang, the areas north and south of the Huai river, Changlu, and the Hedong Salt Commission.

    We saw him employ twelve beautiful women to carry his sedan chair.

    He had three hundred armored bodyguards, and countless unarmored ones. When he stayed in the market town no one was allowed to pass through, or else would be cut down on the spot.

    Who was his main commander?

    The fourth of the Four Old Hegemons of the Jianghu, Mountain Uprooting Tripod Lifting Huangfu Jun.

    Right, hes extremely treacherous, good at playing power games, a sinister, fierce look, very cunning. Hes followed that Yan Jian for eight years, and so far no one has been able to assassinate Yan Jian, hes really a powerful figure.

    Master, that has nothing to do with us. the Hu-Guang area[2] isnt Yan Jians jurisdiction, he wont run rampant down here south of the Xiang river.

    Of the people heroes of the rivers and lakes are calling to root out, who is the head?

    The second of the Four Hegemons, Benevolence and Righteousness Fortress Benefactor Wu Shiming. Everyone among the rivers and lakes recognizes him as the leader. Next is the leader of the Four Hegemons, Number One Under Heaven of Fortified Might Qilin[3] Fortress, Sword of Heaven and Earth Gongsun Zhou.

    Good, you remember. Also, there is Spirit Calling Envoy Zhan Hong.

    The dark path has a lot of famed masters, his three-section staff can attack a person from twenty feet out, and he will use any kind of hidden weapon to kill people anyway he can, not a good creature. Three years ago he offered his services to Huangfu Jun. Ive heard hes already become quite wealthy.

    Hes already reached Southern Mountains Zhurong Peak.

    Eh! Yan Jians henchmen really have extended to the south?

    Zhuang Yiping was unable to maintain his composure, his face changed slightly.

    Seems that way Mystical Freak told about his run in on Zhurong Peak with Nine Extremes Deity. Finally, he said, I was hiding in the grasses after suffering injury and trying to recover, all I could do was hide it out, but just then Spirit Calling Envoy ran into those other lowlife trash and had to duke it out, not more than eight feet away from where I was hiding.

    I have no friendly relations with Spirit Calling Envoy, why does he want to find me, and who were those people he was with? The person who leaked my whereabouts no doubt was my good friend Mountain Essence Liu. Mountain Essence is my only friend, why would he sell me out?

    Your disciple will go find those dogs

    Youre too impulsive, child, right now the problem is not seeking out revenge. I dont want you wasting time and energy playing with your life with those vile dogs, its not worth it. Most important right now is to investigate what Spirit Calling Envoy and his henchmen are up to.

    I bet its probably Calm Sword Wei Anren, Zhuang Yiping said confidently.

    I had that thought too. If he has really been persuaded to offer his services to Yan Jian, then Yan Jian has even more muscle to put pressure on officials and the people.

    Master, Calm Sword probably wouldnt soil his integrity, hes really into Buddhism, and hes long ago shown the rivers and lakes what kind of person her is, he wouldnt do such underhanded things.

    Its hard to say, whether or not the white cloud leave the mountain is beyond its control. Ive suffered injury and cant deal with those contemptible creatures. Child, since youre no longer roaming the rivers and lakes, keep an eye on the Wei family.

    No, Master, I dont want to live the rest of my life in my hometown, Ive already told my dad clearly, I want to enter the rivers and lakes and help those who dont have anyone to rely on. Dads already not as determined as he was before to keep me at home; I already planned to come find you after several days. Now, we should leave as soon as possible and go find Nine Extremes Deity

    I already told you, those people are not worth fussing about.

    Mystical Freak said earnestly, incidents calling for revenge and killing are extremely common among the rivers and lakes, if you fuss over every one, your whole life you wont be able to do your proper duty. Instead, youll spend year after year finding is hard to sleep and eat in peace because of revenge and retaliation.

    ThenMaster plans to

    Originally I had planned to go back home and heal my wounds, but Spirit Calling Envoy showed up, I cant help but feel a little anxious. Calm Sword is your close neighbor. If we unfortunately guessed correctly, Im afraid he will have a big problem, which might very well end up dragging you in with it.

    Your disciple has had no contact with the Wei family

    Whether you have or havent doesnt matter, but its affect is another matter. Im afraid you will be seized with a sudden impulse to take matters into your own hands, and you might get played and trapped into something you cant get yourself out of.

    Calm Sword conducts himself well, if he has been unable to endure the threats and bribes and has thrown in with Yan Jian, that would be the martial groves misfortune. The martial fraternitys integrity would be completely ruined.

    But good and back fortune have no door, we invite it in ourselves. If he really cant withstand them, then who could avoid being pulled into the rivers and lakes disaster? I came here today to warn you to be careful, to let your mind prepare itself. If you can extend a hand to help Calm Sword, might as well extend the hand, but but mustnt under any circumstances take the initiative, you mustnt force the issue.

    Your disciple will keep this firmly in mind.

    Good. Your teacher suffered a sneak attack, hit by a Heart Busting Palm when he was already weak. My injuries are not light, and I am already advanced in years. Whether I can recover in two or three years is uncertain, so I plan to hide away and take care of myself. You mustnt go off charging about.

    Master, I meant it earlier when I said you could stay here and recover

    No, I first have to go find my old buddy the Generous Alchemist. Without his miraculous pills theres no hope for me to recover completely. I dont know where Generous Alchemist has wandered off to. Searching for him alone is more convenient. Its getting late, I should go.

    Master, come to my place first, maybe I can use my internal energy to heal you

    I know your neigong is refined, but this kind of injury penetrates to the marrow. Without some wonder drugs for assistance, no one would be able to help. The boats waiting for me at the dock. I must hide by day and travel at night to distant parts. Im leaving, dont see me off.

    Master

    Wait til Im all better, Ill come and find you.

    ***

    Sunset clouds filled the sky, Zhuang Yiping walked route back to his home. He appeared to be laden with anxiety, walking with his hands clasped behind his back and his head down, lost in thought.

    A weary crow returning to the forest, on the small path one frequently could see people traveling in twos and threes, heading back home. Passing through a small wood, he heard the sound of footsteps.

    He didnt pay any attention. He had only been back home a few days, he had been gone for twelve years, none of the neighbors come these past ten years left much of an impression on him.

    Whoever was coming probably would not recognize him. In the last ten years he had grown up, even his close relatives had not recognized his change, so there was no need to say hello.

    A burst of light, high grade, particularly delicate fragrance entered his nose.

    He froze, then instinctively turned his head back to look.

    A brief glimpse and he froze again.



    [1]3-5pm

    [2]Hunan, Hubei, Guangdong, and Guangxi were collectively referred to as Hu-Guang.

    [3]Qilin, 麒麟, a mythical creature somewhat akin to a unicorn, but is chimeric.
    Last edited by whiteskwirl; 12-03-14 at 12:03 PM.

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    Thanks whiteskwirl

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    Thanks whiteskwirl

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    Thanks whiteskwirl

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    Thanks, whiteskwirl.

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    Thanks whiteskwirl!

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    Thanks whiteskwirl , very interesting story!

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    Thanks whiteskwirl. A different author gives a different perspective. Keep up the good work so far.

  13. #33
    Senior Member whiteskwirl's Avatar
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    This part finishes chapter two. I will be continuing this translation from now on. I've started a bunch, kind of flailing around trying to decide what to translate, but I've decided to stick with this one. I like Yun Zhongyue's style, his work has a strong sense of place. I plan to update regularly; I can't let Foxs run this forum all alone, we need some more wuxia in here.





    Chapter 2: Little Tyrant
    Part 4




    Oh! What a pretty girl, he thought.

    Then recognition shook him. The feeling pulled him back more than ten years to vague memories from when he was a kid.

    She was a refined, beautiful girl, two eyes like deep pools, her pupils sparkling like diamonds. Although she wore plain unadorned clothes, it couldnt cover up her graceful bearing, and it really couldnt cover up her beauty.

    In short, she was a fifteen or sixteen year old bud in the flower of her youth, truly a hard to forget young girl!

    She also recognized him and her face glowed with astonishment. Her feet slowed and the wildflowers in her hand suddenly fell to the ground. He knew who she was, and he thought of the little tyrant who had kicked him earlier.

    First impressions were most important. If the first encounter is pleasant then if there is no special incidents, that impression wont change.

    At the same time, the impression extends to associations. If you like the person tehn you will also like that persons brothers, sisters, and friends. And vice-versa.

    Youre Brother Zhuang, she said innocently with delight. Then rosy clouds appeared on her cheeks. Do you still remember me?

    Youre Little Chunchun. He laughed, it was a sincere laugh. The runny-nosed crybaby in the blink of an eye turned into a little celestial. So pretty, if I met you on the straight I wouldnt have the courage to talk to you.

    Youre a good talker. Chunchun lissomely came approached, a faint shy smile increasing her loveliness thirty-percent. I head Dad say you had returned safely and I was very happy, butI havent come to see you.

    Chunchun, were grown up now. He sighed. Time has dragged us far apart, the past will never come again. That happy time when we used to pick flowers and steal fruit in the mountains is already a thing of the distant past, so dim I cant even remember it clearly. Yes, weve grown up, weve already passed the age of youthful dreaming. Even if I hadnt been gone for ten years time would still have pulled us far apart.

    Zhuang Gege (Gege=big brother), do you really think that? Chunchun asked faintly.

    Its not that I want to think like that, its that I must. Oh! You still like to pick flowers?

    Yes, what girl doesnt like to pick flowers? Zhuang Gege, where have you been these long ten years?

    I was running around with a vagrant, muddling through the last ten years. Chunchun, its getting dark, Ill take you home.

    Lets walk together.

    Youre already a young lady. He took slow strides. You cant be out this late picking flowers, you know?

    II was waiting for you.

    Waiting for me? You

    Little Brother said he saw you at noon enter the city with Big Brother Yixin, soI didnt know when you would come back and I was afraid I wouldnt recognize you, after all we havent seen each other in ten years. I waited for you almost two hours, then suddenly saw you. I was really a bit at a loss.

    Thanks for waiting for me, he mumbled. Mentioning the little tyrant, his mood began to darken.

    He left home when he was twelve, Chunchun was only six then. In their area all the kids would play together every day, running around the mountain stealing peaches and picking plums.

    Chunchun and the other seven or eight kids who were around six to eight years old would all follow the boys.

    Back then he didnt have any special feeling toward the gentle girl who would cry so easily and liked to follow him around, he just knew Chunchun didnt like to contend with the others for things, so he would often give her extra fruit to make up the difference, nothing more than that.

    Then, that crybaby girl still followed behind him.

    But in fact that ugly girl had turned into a celestial maiden, now she walked beside him and talked tirelessly of the past.

    He remembered Chunchun had two elder brothers.

    The oldest was Yunpeng, four years older than him. He had been the leader of their group of boys. He grown strong like a mountain and his disposition was just as fierce. The second brother was Yunyi, he was two years older than him. He was a dirty troublemaker who was always the fastest to steal his neighbors fruit.

    Anyhow, the two boys didnt take good care of their little sister, as if they felt a crybaby little sister tagging along behind them spoied their splendor and pleasure.

    Are your brothers well? he asked.

    I remember every time we went to the mountains to play I always waited for you, Chunchun said, not letting go of her earlier topic. Only, Zhuang Gege, you seemed to not like me much.

    I cant remember. He searched his memory. I think I treated everyone the same. Oh, I remember. One time you fell in a ravine and I turned back and carried yout on my back all the way home. Your familys steward Second Uncle Jiang like to beat me, he thought I had bullied you. You were so busy crying as if the world wa ending you didnt have time to stick up for me and plead innocent for me. After that I didnt go to your house anymore.

    It was all my fault. Afterward, my dad scolded Second Uncle Jiang severely.

    I heard last year your dad and Instructor Tan from the Changsha military school went to Dongting and had a falling out with the Prince of Dongting. How are things now?

    My dad doesnt roam the jianghu anymore, he doesnt get involved with that pointless stuff anymore. Do you remember Sister Xia, from the Cai family from south of the mountain?

    Cai Xiaoxia? She

    When we were little you liked her the best. Shes already a mother of two children now, she had one at the beginning of the year and then again at the end of the year.

    Oh! Shes doing well then.

    He remembered better now, Xiaoxia, that eight or nine years old girl in pigtails, clever and cunning and coquettish, everyone liked her. Yes, he liked Xiaoxia the best, they had been childhood playmates. Now she already had to kids of her own.

    She married to the Li family in Shanghengjiang, she married someone she didnt even know. Her husband is a good-for-nothing, loves to gamble. Her in-laws blame her, say she hasnt kept a tight rein on him.

    Chunchuns tone was resentful. That dirty swine has been addicted to gambling since he was young, how can they blame Sister Xia? It was that matchmaker harmed her, and her parents didnt give a second thought to her happiness. Shanghengjiang is about thirty li away from here so its not hard to learn about someones character.

    Thats life. He said, a bit sadly, Life usually doesnt work out the way you want it to, when something happens you just have to accept fate.

    Do you want to go see her?

    Dont joke around, Chunchun. He forced a smile. If I really went to see her it would only make her days more troublesome. Rumors would abound and it would be the talk of the town.

    Plus, we were only neighbors when we were kids, to make a special trip of thirty li to go see her, people would think I was crazy, and theyd take me as a scoundrel.

    As they walked side by side talking carefree about the old days they lost track of time and before they knew it Mist and Rain Pavilion came into view. Not far from there was Yipings house.

    A three-way junction lay before the pavilion, one of the other pathes led to Wei Family Manor.

    Two dark shadows emerged on the little path. They stood before the pavilion and saw Yiping and Chunchun walking side by side. The little path was not very wide so they of course had to walk close together, making them look intimate.

    The two shadows were two handsome young men, dark robes fluttering, obviously men of talent.

    Especially the one on the left dressed like a scholar, who wore a pearl and jade inlaid magnificent long sword. He looked stalwart and unrestrained. His arrogant, heaven-disdaining dignified tiger gaze made one not dare to look at him the wrong way.

    Thats my younger sister, the young man on the right said.

    Who is that person? The sword-wearing scholar asked, his slanting eyebrows knit, eyes flashing like cold lightning.

    Oh! That looks like Zhuang Yiping, the son of my neighbor the Zhuang family, hes just returned home.

    Oh! Brother Yunyi, your younger sister and he seemed to be close.

    They grew up together!

    Still far off, Zhuang Yiping saw them and said to Chunchun, Look, your Second Brother has come to meet you.

    Chunchun raised her head sharply. She laughed, Its my Second Brother, the other one

    Zhuang Yiping these past ten years had roamed the jianghu with his shifu, who had hid his identity and covered his true appearance and taken him tosee coldly all matters of the jianghu.

    Therefore, he was familar with the jianghu, he had seen and heard a lot, but unless it was a life-and-death crisis he didnt meddle in others affairs, but the activites of the jianghu didnt not escape he and his shifu.

    That is Number One Under Heaven Mighty Qiling Fortress Sword of Heaven and Earth Gongsun Zhous beloved son, hes called Young Master of the Wulin Young Fortress Chief Gongsun Yunchang. Hes famous among the jianghu, hes a household name.

    He explained methodically, Sword of Heaven and Earth is chief among the Four Hegemons. He had some dealings with your dad in the past, I didnt know Young Master Gongsun had come to Hunan as a guest of your fathers. Its possible something big has happened.

    Eh! How do you know all this jianghu stuff? Chunchun asked, surprised.

    Did you forget? I was abducted by a vagrant of the jianghu and wandered around everywhere with him, how can I not know matters of the jianghu? If I didnt know I would have been able to survive!

    That young master really has a lofty spirit.

    Hes known as Young Master of the Jianghu, of course his appearance will be a cut above others.

    What kind of person is he?

    ThatIm not too sure about. They quickened their pace and were soon at the pavilion.

    Zhuang Yiping was the first to make his greetings toward Wei Yunyi. He smiled, Second Brother Wei, do you still remember your little brother Zhuang Yiping?

    Wei Yunyi returned the greeting and smiled, News of your return has already spread within and without the city, you still look faintly the same as before, how could I not remember?

    Brother Yiping, these past few days my big brother and I havent been at home, we just got in from Changsha last night by boat. Hehe, I havent seen you in ten years, youve grown strong. In a few days Ill invite you to the city for a few drinks. Here, let me introudce you two, Little Sister you come too.

    The sword-carrying scholar really was Gongsun Yunchang. As soon as his eyes lit on Wei Chunchun they radiated.

    Introductions complete, they said a few polite words.

    When Gongsun Yunchang heard Wei Yunyi introduce Yiping as part-farmer, part-businessman, son of the country wealthy man who never leaves Hengzhou, how could he not look down on Yiping? Plus Yipings plain clothes, so even a nod and a greeteing from him was obviously forced.

    But Wei Chunchun, the Young Master of the Wulin was particular attentive to her, smilng proudly, he said with pleasure to her, From what your brother says, your waigong and neigong training has reached an outstanding level, worth notice to all under heaven. Presently the whole world is un upheaval, disciples from all the famous schools are making their start among the jianghu, theres really no lack of talent among the wulin.

    Miss, if you have an interest in steeling yourself within the jianghu, I should be considered a forerunner. I live on the northern bank of the Great River, youre welcome to come pay me a visit. Due to Uncle Weis prestige, you will receieve a warm welcome from all the chivalrous heroes, making a name for yourself would be as easy as turning your palm.

    Chunchun maintained her gentle smile, and said in a dignified manner, Fatehr once said, the jianghu is full of treacherous people and traps are everywhere, its not suitable for a girl to roam the jianghu. My humble village is picturesque and heroes bring glory to a place, even my father prefers to stay in this place, why should a weak girl like me flaunt herself among the jianghu? Im grateful for your kindness, Young Master Gongzun, but I must decline.

    Zhuang Yiping was tactful, he said to Wei Yunyi, Second Brother Wei, Ill come see you in a few days, Ill take my leave now.

    Wei Yunyi didnt detain him, but laughed and said, Just returning home my home has a lot of guests, I cant get away to do anything, well talk in a few days, take care.

    Zhuang Gege, tomorrow Ill come find you. Chunchun said with a winsome smile, Thank you for escorting me.

    Gongsun Yunchang, standing to the side, his tiger eyes flashed cold lightning.


    END CHAPTER TWO
    Last edited by whiteskwirl; 11-03-16 at 08:31 AM.

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    Default Chapter 3: Part 1

    Chapter 3: Internal Strife
    Part 1




    The word love is an enigma, the word fate is even more mysterious.

    Zhuang Yiping didnt think anything of his childhood playmate Wei Chunchun when he was young. Separated these ten years they had each grown up, Miss Wei was now a graceful and striking beauty, so it only stood to reason that he ought to fall in love with the girl he grew up with, especially since her affectionate actions showed clearly she was smitten with him.

    But ever since little Yunfeis rude behavior that time, he felt a strong prejudice against the Wei family which prevented him from thinking about getting close to Chunchun, it had set up a chasm between them he couldnt cross over.

    Young Master Gongsun and Zhuang Yiping were opposites, one look at Chunchun and he looked at her like a goddess, one look and hed already made up his mind about feelings toward her and had settled on his strategy for winning her over.

    Chunchun was extremely affectionate toward Yiping, her pretty face revealed the secrets of her heart and when Gongsun Yunchang saw this the Young Master of the Wulin really felt a strong dislike toward Yiping, murderous thoughts emerged.

    Yiping was a feeling person, peoples expressions as well as the changes in their inner feelings were difficult to escape his attention.

    He saw the murderous thoughts in Gongsun Yunchangs eyes and he saw the continuous tender affection Chunchun had revealed to him.

    Gongsun Yunchang stared at Yiping as the latter gradually faded away in the distance, then he turned to Wei Yunyi and asked with a forced smile, Brother Yunyi, is that Brother Zhuang fellow a man of the wulin?

    Wei Yunyi laughed and said carelessly, Thats hard to say. There hasnt been many natural or man-made disasters in the Hunan region, the people are prosperous and the population is growing, so a lot of people are moving west to seek a living.

    Heading west along the Xiang River, over the river across the plains to Lingzhou, along the Li River in Guangxi down toward Guilin prefecture, even down toward the southern route the Qin army took in the old days toward Yuenan, far to the south business are cropping up. That region is a wild and untamed area, barbarian tribes abound everywhere and wild animals enter the cities and suburbs, if you dont know any martial arts its difficult to defend yourself. Consequently, the villages in Hunan all have martial arts training schools.

    Practicing self defense doesnt count as being part of the wulin, Gongsun Yunchang said proudly.

    Brother Yiping started out when he was six years old, his familys training school has five master teachers, Southern Master Six Harmonies Long Fist is an orthodox school within the wulin. As far as what went on after he was abducted these past ten years, no one knows! Whether or not he stopped practicing martial arts during that time is unknown.

    He has a robust and strong physique, such a pity appearances are better than reality. Gongsun Yunchang wanted to tout his own prowess, Practicing martial arts isnt a simple matter, great teachers produce great students, how could a place like this where every village has its own school produce an above average fighter? Let alone

    Young Master Gongsun, Chunchun interjected, so youre saying if this place were the home of the mighty Shaolin Monastery, there must be masters here, heroes all over the place? But a backwoods southern place like Hunan must have no one.

    Haha, Miss, dont be so sensitive, Gongsun Yunchang laughed. Uncle Wei is known as one of the Four Heroes of the Wulin, the Fourth Sword Sage Southern Mountain is renowned throughout the jianghu and is from a great family, not at all the same as the average person coming out of these local martial schools, for example you

    Its getting late, we should head back, Wei Yunyi broke in, trying to smooth things over. He could tell his sister didnt think much of Gongsun Yunchang, if they kept on talking they would surely part on bad terms!

    As dusk settled, visibility became limited.

    As they walked the dim silhouette of Yiping rose up from the edge of the forest not too far off.

    Strange, whats that arrogant playboy doing down here in Hunan? Yiping mumbled to himself. Huangfu Juns henchmen emerge on Zhurong Peak and this playboy is a guest here. Benefactor Wu Shiming has called on the heroes of the world to fight a bitter fight to the death with the evildoers of the world, Sword of Heaven and Earth Gongzun Zhou is a supporter of Benefactor Wu.

    Circumstances are not good, this playboy must have been sent to come lobby for Southern Mountain to leave the mountain and join up with Benefactor Wu to eliminate the villains, but was found out by Huangfu Jun and secretly followed. If Southern Mountain is really aroused by his sense of justice and resolutely assents to leave the mountain and join the alliance, I fear something bad will happen, Huangfu Jun would be the worlds stupidest *** if he doesnt take the initiative to take the upper hand.

    Spirit Calling Envoy appeared on Zhurong Peak, but he didnt leave because of Shifu, most likely it his target was Southern Mountain. This playboy is inviting trouble on the Wei family, I must think of a way to stop Uncle Wei from leaving the mountain, and avoid Huangfu Jun getting the advantage, I cant let Huangfu Jun have an excuse to eliminate the Wei family.

    He retreated back into the forest and disappeared like a ghost.

    Yan Maoqing was appointed by Grand Secretary Yan Song to be in charge of four salt commissions, this happened the year before last. Before that Huangfu Jun had already been following the villains for six years.

    At that time that treacherous Yans official title was Censor of the Left, he often made inspection tours around the empire, always acting the tyrant, hes known everywhere as one of the Four Great Evil Villains.

    During this time, Wu Shiming was the leading figure among the heroes of the world, he tried many times to assassinate Yan Song, ambush him, plot his murderbut he was never successful. And Huangfu Juns henchmen routed the foolhardy heroes.

    Ever since Yan Song took control of the salt commissions the conflicts intensified like wildfire, both sides went all out, but the bad guys won out, Benefactor Wu never held the advantage, and his accepted position as leader among his friends of the jianghu was already in a precarious state.

    If Southern Mountain joined them, they might be able to come back from their inferior position.

    The Four Heroes of the Wulins Eastern Divinity lived in seclusion on Penglai Divine Mountain, no one could find him, so he wasnt likely to come back to the Central Plains to lend a hand to Benefactor Wu.

    Western Daoist hadnt shown his face among the jianghu in years, it was said he had penetrated deep into the western Kunlun mountains to practice his asceticism, no one knew when he would return to the Central Plains.

    Their only hope of getting help against the villian Yan was Southern Mountain and Northern Mountain.

    Sword of Heaven and Earth had sent his son Gongsun Yunchang to lobby Southern Mountain, that made sense. During the last surprise attack Benefactor Wu had suffered defeat. Sword of Heaven and Earth led a different group and they won victory, defeating many of Huangfu Juns henchmen.

    Consequently, Sword of Heaven and Earths fame was already gradually surpassing Benefactor Wus, shockingly becoming the new leader of the jianghu.

    Zhuang Yiping hoped he could stop Southern Mountain from leaving the mountain, at least put a halt to Gongsun Yunchangs plan.

    But he didnt get a chance. The next day he received word that Southern Mountain has indeed been roused by his sense of justice and had agreed to help Sword of Heaven and Earth, he was duty-bound to help, and had already set about preparing for the journey.

    Not long after noon, Yiping reached Mist and Rain Pavilion.

    A moment later Chunchun and the Little Tyrant Wei Yunfei appeared on the little path.

    Wei Yunfei was dressed even finer than before, wearing a blue satin tight jacket, on his belt he carried a dagger.

    Chunchun hurried to Mist and Rain Pavilion and welcomed Yiping with a smile. She said happily, Zhuang Gege, I brought my little brother here to apologize to you.

    Wei Yunfei strode arrogantly up to the pavilion, said angrily, Sis, I didnt say I would apologize to him, only if he can beat me in a round of fisticuffs.

    The little guys fists werent very big, he held them up, shaking them and curled his lip up at Yiping in a show of disdain.

    Yiping didnt wait for Chunchun to speak, but laughed, Little brother, when I left home you were still running around in your baby pants, you have the nerve to have a go at me?

    What do you mean have the nerve? Wei Yunfei curled his lip in contempt. Whoever has the hardest fists is the strongest, you know?

    All right, all right, Chunchun waved her hands unhappily. Since youre not going to apologize, you stubborn thing, Im not looking after you. Go on back.

    Im not going back, the little guy said resolutely.

    You

    Big Brother Gongsun told me to go with you.

    What? Chunchun was surprised.

    He said its dangerous for you to go out alone.

    What the hell! He sure is meddlesome.

    Dad also said that an unmarried girl has to have someone accompany her when she goes out, the little guy said with a strong sense of justice. He sat down on the pavilion railing and stared at Yiping.

    Yiping sat on the stone bench and said to Chunchun, Uncles worries are not without merit, having Little Brother with you is safer. Chunchun, I heard your father is getting ready for a trip?

    Yes, Chunchun said. She looked worried. Hes going north with Young Master Gongsun, for what reason I dont know.

    Your elder brothers?

    Theyre not going.

    And you?

    Of course Im not going. Im really worried, Dad hasnt worn a sword in so long, today he was personally sharpening it. I dont know why, but this whole thing gives me the shivers, like some calamity is about to happen, this trip is not a good thing.

    I know, the little guy said. Hes going to uphold justice and eliminate the villains. I heard Big Brother Gongsun say it. When Im bigger Im also going to go flaunt my strength with Big Brother Gongsun.

    You watch your mouth, youre too big for your britches, also arrogant and stubborn, so troublesome. Chunchun glared at the little guy.

    The little guy made a face at her, but he shut his mouth.

    Yiping shook his head. When is your father leaving?

    Probably within three days.

    Oh! So fast? These next few days your father ought to have more people out on the night watch and increased their vigilance, he said without thinking.

    Zhuang Gege, why? Chunchun said.

    Young Master Gongsun is famous among the jianghu, hes made not a few enemies. Its possible someone has followed him here to make trouble, and that could spread to your fathers house.

    Oh go to hell! the little guy cut in. Big Brother Gongsuns Heaven and Earth sword skill is not worse than my dads, who would dare come for him? Hmph!

    Yiping didnt want to say more, the little guy wasnt reliable, saying more would just cause trouble so he didnt offer an explanation. With that kid here he had no interest in discussing family matters with Chunchun, so he made and excuse and took his leave.

    Two days passed without incident.

    In receiving his guest, Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain left his personal quarters and put his guest up in the big house. It was a huge residence, four rows of rooms with a courtyard plus a house for the tenant farmers, thirty houses in all.

    Gongsun Yunchang was put up in the east wing of the front compound, a veranda led to the drawing room. The east wing had three rooms, the other two were empty, and with Gongsun Yunchang the only guest, there were only two servants.

    Tomorrow was the day they would set off, so that night the host held a banquet in the southern compound.

    The manor had only two old hired hands keeping watch at night and they were not vigilant.

    The manor was constructed against the mountain, inside the courtyard were flowers and trees, outside there was a forest, anyone could easily get in from any direction.


    to be continued...

  15. #35
    Senior Member whiteskwirl's Avatar
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    Default Chapter 3: Part 2

    Chapter 3: Internal Strife
    Part 2



    Even though there were people on the night watch, they still wouldnt be able to stop a skilled fighter from entering. The southern village and the northern fortress and stockade were different, there was no danger to guard against.

    Due to Gongsun Yunchangs youth, the seating position between host and guest was arranged differently. Not long after darkness set in the lanterns in the hall were raised and lit. There was only one table set up, and according to regulations men and women could not sit together, so only Wei Anren and his sons and the guest Gongsun Yunchang sat there, along with three stewards who helped manage the country estate.

    At the head of the table Southern Mountain was already half a century old, though he didnt look old at all except for his handsome three-tuft long beard and his sky blue loose-fitting gown.

    He was a handsome man in his youth, he was once jokingly called Jade Pan An[1]. Now, although he was fifty, he still had slanting eyebrows, a pale face and red lips, no wonder his sons and daughter were all attractive.

    Their guest had already been there two days so they had already talked about what needed to be talked about, so at this banquet, after his three sons each had a drink with their guest, he smiled and said to Gongsun Yunchang, Virtuous Nephew Gongsun, these three days I have discussed things with you but my sons and daughter dont yet know the details. In order to prepare them mentally, tonight in the study I will inform them.

    Right now they must all have their suspicions, and urgently want to know the meaning behind this urgent letter your father has sent to me encouraging me to leave the mountain. Nephew, why dont you tell them about the turn events thats taken place within the jianghu so that they will understand why I feel so strongly about going.

    Gongsun Yunchang smiled and stood up, raising his wine cup. The letter my father gave me ordered me to go south and invite Uncle Wei to descend the mountain to uphold justice on behalf of the wulin and help eliminate evil

    Within the courtyard there suddenly came a ghostly howl, ear-piercingly sharp to make the hair raise on the back of your neck, cutting off Gongsun Yunchangs speech.

    Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain was stunned, his face changed, he suddenly stood up.

    His eldest son Wei Yunpeng had roamed the jianghu for several years with his father, he knew something was amiss, he threw down his cup and said, We have an uninvited guest

    Ha ha ha ha The deep laugh shook the hall, then black silhouettes suddenly appeared at the doorway of the hall.

    From the back door of the hall a could snort was heard, and three black-clothed people appeared blocking the door.

    The people at the front was very fast, slipping past eight people like lightning and fanning out guarding three directions, eight long swords glittering brilliantly under the lanternlight.

    A light cough, and then three people wearing dark blue entered.

    Without waiting for anyone to react, the leader of the three spoke up quickly, No rash moves! Whoever gets any bright ideas will have to face hidden weapon attacks from all directions, then will have to meet receive moves from me, Merciless Sword Soul-Snatcher.

    Gongsun Yunchang had already picked up a flagon of wine intending to throw it to catch them off guard, but not he set it back down.

    The entire manor has already been sealed off by over a dozen top men, anyone who doesnt know his ability and decides to charge out will be dealt with ruthlessly.

    Another person dressed as a filthy beggar said, No exceptions for anyone, so I, Ghost Beggar Liao Du, advise you all to not overstep your bounds.

    Ghost Beggar Liao Du was one of the Six Freaks of the Jianghu, the same generation as Zhuang Yipings shifu Mystical Goblin Qiu Lei.

    The first one with bright hawk eyes, the tall and thin one who had called himself Merciless Sword was a well-known master among the famous people of the White Way, the unfeeling one known as Merciless Sword Luo Guangqin, he was first among the Four Great Pugilists of the capitals Baoding prefecture. He was also known as Northern Sword, you could say he was the main representative of swordplay in the north.

    These past few years, Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain rarely went out. Although last year he had went to Wuchang, the capital of the Hu-Guang area to see friends, it was a quick trip and he had very little contact with other personages of the jianghu. But he had been taken unawares and he knew tonight did not look good for him, his opponent had come prepared and had complete control of the situation.

    What made him most anxious though was the eight of them carried no weapons. His heart dropped, he knew trouble was imminent!

    But he still thought he was in luck, Merciless Sword Luo Guangqin was a famed follower of the White Way, surely he wouldnt be too heartless?

    Brother Luo, whats the meaning of this? Retired Scholar Southern Mountain said, furtively hiding a pair of bamboo chopsticks up his sleeve. Im in the south, you in the north, we rarely have the chance to meet, I considered us something like friends, so whats the meaning of you bringing this bunch of men here in the dead of night to my humble abode?

    He bore down on us menacingly, what good does he have in mind? Gongsun Yunchang said, gritting his teeth. Hes one of Yan Songs henchmen, one of that villainous Mountain Uprooting Tripod Uplifting Huangfus faithful lap dogs.

    Merciless Sword laughed maliciously, said gravely, Young Master Gongsun, go on and curse me, just wait a bit and youll know how I deal with those who are foolhardy enough to curse me.

    Sir, did you come here for Young Master Gongsun? Retired Scholar Southern Mountain asked.

    No, I came for you. Merciless Sword laughed sardonically.

    Mountain Uprooting Tripod Lifting Huangfu Jun is interested in me?

    Wei Anren, you must know in your heart my purpose for coming here, theres no need to waste a lot of time talking. Merciless Swords face turned severe, Youre known as one of the Four Heroes of the Wulin who considers himself benevolent and righteous, youre not a cowardly petty man who fears for his life.

    Youre too kind.

    I have something to ask you.

    Im listening.

    Yes, you would do well too listen closely. Did you or did you not agree to leave the mountain and help Sword of Heaven and Earth Gongsun Zhou rebel and murder government officials?

    I agreed to Brother Gongsuns request to go and meet with Brother Benefactor Wu, whether or not its too kill officials and revolt is too early to say. Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain answered frankly because he figured denying it was already no use, plus he didnt intend to deny it.

    Are you aware that Benefactor Wu and Mountain Uprooting Tripod Lifting Huangfu Jun are sworn enemies? Do you know my position?

    Ive heard it.

    Then you must know the situation youre in.

    Merciless Sword turned to Gongsun Yunchang, asked, Young Master Gongsun, what did you offer Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain to get him to agree to go see Benefactor Wu?

    Uncle Wei is an outstanding hero, he would never any profit, his reason for lifting his righteous sword in the name of justice is to root our the traitors and rid the country of villains, and hed go through fire and water to do it. Gongsun Yunchangs voice was severe, Youre also a hero of the White Way, you regard yourself as chivalrous, but have actually been blinded by lust for profit and have betrayed your friends and sold out your conscience to throw yourself into the role of subservience to give your all to treacherous villains, youre three-tenths lower than a dog. Luo, do you think your swordplay is profound, really incredible?

    My sword is Merciless

    Do you have the guts to try your sword on me in a fair fight to the death according to the rules of the wulin?

    Ghost Beggar Liao Du snorted and extended his dog-beating staff, laughing maliciously, Everyone touts the rules of the wulin when seeking a fight, our matter here has no need for that. At the same time, youre not fit to fight Brother Luo. Just wait, because of your status as Young Master I will give you the opportunity for a fair fight, but right now shut your mouth and let Brother Luo deal with this false reputationed Southern Mountain Wei here.

    Ill remember that. I have stated my intention clearly to seek a duel with you, Gongsun Yunchang said loudly.

    I accept your challenge, Ghost Beggar laughed.

    Gongsun Yunchang clapped three times, said heavily, These claps will serve to seal the deal, Ill be waiting for you.

    Merciless Sword motioned for Ghost Beggar to withdraw, he sneered at Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain, Wei Anren, I wont be too hard on you, in light of our positions and past friendly relations, I will point the way to a brighter road, you mustnt pass up this chance.

    You want to talk terms? Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain asked.

    Theres no terms to discuss, I want you to make known your attitude.

    Go on.

    First, I want you to say in front of Little Gongsun here that you renounce your decision to leave the mountain and help Benefactor Wu. Second, you muse swear to me right here that you will withdraw from the jianghu and never again leave your manor, but will instead lock your doors to visitors and spend the rest of your days here in the country.

    For someone of Southern Mountains high status within the wulin these two conditions were more serious than taking his life. Merciless Swords prestige within the wulin was far inferior to Southern Mountains, to push him this hard would be unendurable for anyone with a little backbone.

    Cant do it, Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain point-blankly refused.

    Then dont blame me for being cruel and merciless, Merciless Sword said sternly.

    Sir, you think with these men you can compel me to just wait here helplessly for death? Southern Mountains attitude became tougher.

    You think you still have a way out?

    Do you have the guts to have a duel with me?

    Sorry, I have a lot of work to do, where can I find the leisure time to waste with you?

    Coward, strike. Southern Mountain raged, his hand flipped out and upturned the table over, turning the large square table into a defensive wall, bowls and plates and cups and chopsticks all smashed to the floor.

    The eight of them stood behind the table guarding the northwest corner, using the table to block hidden weapons, waiting for the enemy to charge and give them an opportunity to steal a weapon and break out of their encirclement.

    Ha ha ha ha Merciless Sword threw his head back and laughed wildly. You all want to fight like cornered beasts? Dont expect it to go as you hoped, Wei, I have two ways to deal with you, you must obediently bow your head and be captured. Come in!

    From outside the hall rushed in a large man, he bowed in greeting. Your subordinate is at your service.

    Go ask Brother Chase the Clouds to Catch the Moon Jin Cheng to bring in the Wei family prisoners.

    Yes sir, your subordinate will pass on the message. The large man saluted and withdrew.

    Southern Mountains stomach dropped, he gnashed his teeth, Luo, what are you planning? You

    Ha ha ha ha Merciless Sword laughed wildly.

    This method is most excellent for dealing with a stubborn inflexible one such as yourself, Ghost Beggar said, immensely pleased.

    The other method is: in case you hold your wife and children to be outside your consideration and still refuse to surrender and be captured, I will seal off the dining hall and set it alight with my Merciless Fire, that would me wonderful, wouldnt it? Merciless Sword laughed wildly, very proud of himself.

    Southern Mountains heart went cold, he knew he was finished. He yelled harshly, You venomous dog!

    Ha ha ha ha Merciless Sword threw his head back and laughed wildly.

    If he waited for the prisoners something bad would happen! Southern Mountain clenched his teeth, raised his right hand and launched the pair of chopsticks he had hidden at the three men by the back door. At the same time he leapt up and used his blazingly fast body skill to pounce.

    One of the estate stewards behind him happened to leap up at the same time.

    The twelve year old Little Tyrant Wei Yunfei scurried out from the table like a little rat, shooting forth low to the ground.

    to be continued...


    Notes:

    [1]Pan An was a Western Jin poet known for his good looks.

  16. #36
    Senior Member spynet's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks whiteskwirl !

  17. #37
    Senior Member whiteskwirl's Avatar
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    Default Chapter 3: Part 3

    Here is part three! Just one more part left to finish up chapter three.



    Chapter 3: Internal Strife
    Part 3


    Three people jumping out to risk life and limb, saying it takes time but actually it happened very quickly, the whole thing lasting only a second.

    Who knew that as the eight people inside the room prepared, the three in front of Merciless Sword already figured they would try to make a run for it, so at almost the same time eleven people raised their left hands and hidden weapons flew, splitting the air with sharp hair-raising whistles.

    Ah A wild cry lit out, coming from the men guarding the back door. Two of the three men dropped, their chests pierced like fish.

    Ugh Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain exclaimed, landing heavily as he came down from jumping over the table, slamming into the smashed bowls and plates and cups on the floor, coiling and twisting violently.

    The estate steward didnt get a chance to make a sound, he fell on the erect end of the table. The eldest son Wei Yunpeng pulled him down.

    Little Yunfei crawled at the edge of the table, trying to retreat, but a barbed bolt from a sleeve shooter stuck into his left back, at his collarbone, it hurt so bad he quickly almost lost the strength to retreat.

    The table was shot through with five of six various kinds of hidden weapons, the wall was even more littered with them, every one shot with shocking power, penetrating the black bricks two inches or more, it was clear each one was a malicious toy that could bust up anyones internal qi.

    No one else ran out, they all hit behind the table.

    But Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain couldnt retreat, he lay on the broken shards of dinnerware fighting for his life.

    Ha ha ha ha Merciless Sword laughed wildly. When he was done laughing he exclaimed, Who else wants to try?

    I want to duel with Ghost Beggar, Gongsun Yunchang called out from behind the table.

    Come on out, Ghost Beggar said heavily.

    First throw me a sword.

    Ghost Beggar waved his hand and a man guarding outside the hall came in and handed him a sword.

    Clang! The long sword clattered down in the middle of the hall, about six feet away from the table.

    Come out and pick up the sword, Ghost Beggar called out.

    Gongsun Yunchang straightened his back and stood up, he took a step away from the table.

    The second eldest Yunyi grabbed Gongsun Yunchang and cried urgently, Dont go, theyre up to something.

    Umm

    If they sincerely want to give you the chance to duel they wouldnt leave it so far away. Wei Yunyi pulled Gongsun Yunchang back behind the table as he spoke.

    Ha ha ha ha! If youre not coming out then can we tie you up now? Merciless Sword yelled proudly. Being in complete control of the situation it was hard to avoid feeling satisfied with oneself.

    Wei Yunpeng pushed away the already-dead estate steward, pulled out two white tiger nails from the vital points on the right side of his belly, raised them up and grit his teeth in anger, Come on, two white tiger nails, there must be two filthy dogs want to join me in the city of death.

    Im already tired of waiting, Merciless Sword said heavily. Enter! Is Brother Jin here yet?

    A large man entered the hall, bowed and said, The signal has already been given

    Dolt! Why dont you send someone to go check?

    Boss, after Group Leader Hu gave the signal he personally went to the inner courtyard to get them, but til now theres been no activity.

    Are they coming soon?

    I dont know, the lanterns in the main hall are extinguished, cant see the situation beyond or if anyone is moving about.

    Send someone quickly to urge them on

    He hadnt finished speaking when two guards from outside the hall fell flat on their backs, their cries were sudden, once they fell they didnt move, like two chunks of dead wood.

    Eh! Merciless Sword cried out. He had been facing outside so he saw everything clearly.

    A large dark figure appeared outside the hall, standing in the doorway like a door-god.

    A dark blue kerchief covered his brows, ink black frightening eye sockets, nose daubed with white powder, it was as if the person didnt have a nose.

    Gaping bloodthirsty mouth, crimson hairy cheeks, in his right hand he held a long sword, in his left a dark blue gown.

    No need to send someone to check, the strange-looking uninvited guest said clearly. Thirty two masters have been taken prisoner and eighteen aromatic tubes have changed owners. They drugged everyone in the house, I too sniffed a lot of the stuff. Seems like the only ones left are the thirteen people here.

    Two guards on either side didnt say a word, but raised their left arms and electricity seemed to shoot out.

    The strange guy shook his dark blue gown and the hidden weapons were caught up.

    How ever much scrap copper and iron youve got, best bring it all out now so you can save me the trouble. The strange guy spoke, taking strides into the hall. Second Brother Wei, take off your shirt to ward off the hidden weapons, but dont move yet.

    Wei Yunyi suddenly snapped out of his daydream and hurriedly took off his clothes.

    At the same time, he was confused, that monster seemed like a saving star, but why did he address him so intimately, who would call him Second Brother Wei?

    Ghost Beggar was wily like a ghost, he figured his chance had come, he suddenly charged forward, his dog-beating staff flashing out like lightning, the hidden weapons from his left hand shooting out before him.

    The strange guy didnt use the gown to stop the hidden weapons, instead the sword in his right hand flicked up light and quick, ding! ding! two sharp sounds and two three-edged swallowtail augers were sent flying.

    The long sword spun out, the swords light winking in a flash and then disappearing, soundless and motionlessly knocking the dog-beating staff to the side half a foot, then the ray of light flickered again.

    Just like that Ghost Beggars lower jaw was split open.

    Agh Ghost Beggar cried out, quickly stepping back.

    Again, again, the next time I will take out your eyes, the strange guy flashed his long sword as he spoke.

    Everyone on the scene was shocked.

    Ghost Beggar was one of the Six Freaks of the Jianghu, he was one of the few masters of the jianghu who really stood out from the rest. He used a long weapon as well as hidden weapons for support, to unexpectedly take a sword swipe to the face was really difficult to believe.

    No one could make out clearly how the strange guy used his sword, he was too quick.

    The flash of his sword was out of the ordinary, as if it had already known where the gap between Ghost Beggar and his staff would be and had wedged itself in there. It was as if it had forced Ghost Beggar to make a fatal gap and let the sword take control.

    Merciless Sword was astonished, his face dropped and he raised his sword in a defensive posture. YouWho are you? State your name.

    What does it matter who I am? the strange guy asked back.

    I am Merciless Sword Luo Guangqin

    A hired thug! Good-for-nothing wulin scum, what are you getting so high and mighty about?

    You Merciless Sword stammered.

    Arent you called Merciless Sword?

    II

    Come on! I want to see just how merciless your sword is.

    Merciless Sword clenched his teeth, gave a loud shout, brandished his sword and charged forward, his sword thundering like a tempest and screaming like the growl of a dragon, using his internal energy to drive his sword, its force extending out eight feet in a dogged deathblow. His master stroke was known as Heaven and Earth at Peace, the move containing an attack at the upper and lower body, fast as lightning, unsurpassingly fierce, it was truly a killing blow.

    Having been hit by three hidden weapons, Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain came to and was pulled back behind the table by his eldest son Wei Yunpeng who had seized the opportunity and used his shirt to ward off any possible hidden weapon attack to risk getting his father to safety.

    Just at that moment he stuck his head out from behind the table to watch the strange guy.

    The strange guy stood rock-solid, the gown in his left hand hanging limply at his side, the sword in his right hand brushing easily downward, the fierce attack Heaven and Earth at Peace dissipated like mist and smoke.

    Strange was that Merciless Sword attacks quickly, yet he suddenly slowed.

    Clang clang! The two swords touched twice, sending out a burst of sparks.

    The four corners of the hall were ablaze with lights, but it was still difficult to see the swift soaring paths of the swords.

    Merciless Sword was knocked to the side a step, he retreated hastily in shock.

    This outstanding master of swordplay was finally met with something strange and terrible, the way his opponent received his moves was different from normal swordplay conventions, he saw his foes level was really incredible.

    The sharp point of his sword barely touched his own swords center of gravity, completely negating the force of his strike, to his such a mark so precisely was a rare feat, but the strange guy had done so easily.

    Again, after three moves I will counter. The strange guy said coldly, But if you throw that Meridian Broken Spirit Nail in your left hand, Ill make you bleed out right here. Sir, your swordplay is more than fierce, but is not nimble enough. Im sorry to say you will never have a chance against me!

    Merciless Swords sword hand trembled, his face blanched, he asked horrified, YouWhat kind of swordswordplay is that?

    Heretical swordplay from the heterodox school, the strange guy said.

    From whose school doe you hail?

    Enough nonsense.

    Your strange force of your sword is exceedingly heterodox, your level pure and refined, youre not young?

    Trying to sound me out?

    You

    If you dont come on, I will have to go on the offensive. The strange guy took a stride forward.

    Can you take thirteen against one? Merciless Sword fell back.

    One against twelve, Ghost Beggar is in enough pain to fly to heaven! The strange guy pressed forward. The thirty two men outside are all flat on their backs now, if I cant handle you bunch of drybones, how could I dare show my face?

    Ive lost today, Merciless Sword backed off. Well meet again some day, you cant run away, Commander Huangfu Jun will flay your skin. Having said that, he jumped like a tiger to the back door.

    If you dont leave behind the antidote to your Meridian Broken Spirit Nail, the strange guy said, then I can guarantee you wont live to see the sun rise in the morning.

    If he could just get outside the door he would have a chance to slip away. But Merciless Sword was frozen cold, he didnt dare flee for his life. From his hundred-treasure bag[1] he took out a porcelain bottle and set it on the floor, then clenched his teeth and said, If you have any courage youll say your name and rub the ink and powder from your face.

    You wanna talk big? All right, if you want to see my real face theres a condition, if you see my eye I will dig out your eye; if you see my mouth I will cut off your lips. Come here, tell me which part of me you want to see, Im very generous, Ill give you what you want.

    Was he serious? Merciless Sword didnt want to find out, he made a secret signal and his men all filed out.

    Another called out and Ghost Beggar, his lower jaw split open, also filed out of the hall.

    Dont forget to take the other thirty two men with you, the strange guy said. Theyre all laying in the main hall. Light a torch and youll see them. Can you release their acupoints on their heads? Dont press too hard or they will become idiots.

    Merciless Sword grudgingly withdrew from the hall, staring the strange guy down as he did, then made his quick escape.

    The strange guy then went to the door set a medicine bottle down. This is the antidote to the knockout drugs, hurry and wake up your family.

    Yunyi called hastily, Friend, please wait

    The strange guy was gone in a flash, soundless and motionless like a ghost.

    Yunyi ran to the door but there was no trace of him in the courtyard, the night wind whistled, chilly and quiet and lonely, there was no one around.

    Son, dont go after him, Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain called out weakly. Come take out these Meridian Broken Spirit Nails for me, I cantI cant bearcant bear

    He fainted. Merciless Sword had thrown three Meridian Broken Spirit Nails, two had hit, one in the chest, and the other in his upper rib on the right side. Without the antidote, even if they hadnt hit vital areas he wouldnt be able to make it til noon.

    Gongsun Yunchang stared blankly out hall where the strange guy had just exited, then finally he mumbled, Who wasthat person? His swordplay was unlike any I have seen, so frightening.

    One of the estate stewards helping Little Yunfei up forced a smile, You should say so lovely, because he was standing on our side.

    The entire manor was busy that night, the next day funeral arrangements were made because one of the estate stewards had been killed by a hidden weapon.

    The master of the house was seriously injured, so the eldest son Yunpeng took charge of things.

    After the investigation they learned the villains had scouted everything out and had a person planted inside to release the knockout gas.

    Inside the compound, all the women and children had been hit by the knockout gas, no one was spared.

    The lady of the house, Yunpengs wife Miss Ge, Miss Wei Chunchun, and her wet nurse Miss Zhang had all been bound hand and foot. It was fortunate that the strange guy had come when he did, taking out the six villains within the family quarters.

    Because there was six kerchiefs on the floor it was clear they had been knocked off when the strange guy had hit their acupoints in the back of their heads, so they knew there had been at least six men there.


    to be continued...




    Notes:

    [1] A hundred-treasure bag is a bag, usually leather or sometimes cloth, used to keep ones necessities for traveling.

  18. #38
    Senior Member whiteskwirl's Avatar
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    Default Chapter 3: Part 4

    Chapter 3: Internal Strife
    Part 4


    The rest of the family was out of the loop after they had been rescued, they were all muddleheaded and laid down to rest for a while.

    After activity within the household calmed they began to speculate who their savoir could have been.

    The lady of the house was also a hero of the wulin, but she was a piously devout Buddhist.

    She said it well, it was a savior sent by the Great Merciful Bodhisattva Guanyin, it wasnt a person, how could a person knock out thirty two evil villains with such stealth?

    Although Merciless Sword and Ghost Beggar were no match for Southern Mountain on their own, he didnt think he could best them within fifty moves, yet the strange guy had injured Ghost Beggar with one stroke of his sword, and with one move had frightened Merciless Sword.

    Taking the various swordmasters of the jianghu into account, whose skill was that good? If it wasnt an envoy of Guanyins than what was it?

    The Wei family began to take precautions to guard against the unforeseen.

    Gongsun Yunchang also got ready to leave, of course he couldnt pack off and leave while Retired Scholar of Southern Mountain was injured. On the morning of the third day he saw Southern Mountain and saw the latter was out of danger, so he took his leave.

    Southern Mountain had his eldest son Yunpeng hire a boat for his guest, and said that after his wounds were healed he would pick a day to leave the mountain. He was very angry, he wouldnt be cowed by brute force.

    At his sickbed, Gongsun Yunchang didnt have much he could say.

    Yunpeng led their guest outside the hall, talking with him as they walked. Brother Yunchang, take a boat to Wuchang, it should be safe, but you have to be careful, those villains wont be put off that easily. I hired a boat for you in secret, it will leave in the early morning.

    Im sorry I brought so much trouble on your father, Gongsun Yunchang said in low spirits. Judging by the tone of your fathers voice, it seems like as soon as he is better he is going to go find Benefactor Wu and discuss his plan for revenge and go find and settle accounts with Merciless Sword.

    Thats certainly his plan, Wei Yunpeng sad indignantly. Merciless Sword is just a lackey of Yan Songs, yet he has the audacity to attack us, you can see how arrogant they are.

    Brother Yunpeng, I have something to say, but I wonder if I should?

    Were friends, if you have something to say just say it.

    The villains were defeated, but they wont give up, they will stage a comeback, and when they do they wont send such second-rate people like Merciless Sword. If your father and Benefactor Wu join hands and leaves you in charge of things here, will you be able to handle them when they come again in full force?

    Uh Wei Yunpeng hesitated.

    Only with your father at home will those dastards have misgivings. If they know your father wont dare leave home then he wont be any threat to them and wont attack him, and your household wont be in danger.

    Thats all up to Father to decide

    But your father isnt likely to disregard your opinion, right? Gongsun Yunchang said sincerely, Your father was unfortunate to suffer injury, its natural for him to be angry, but youre a sensible person, you can calmly assess the situation. To tell you the truth, this incident shocked me, that is to say I wouldnt dare ask your father to leave the mountain. If something were to happen again it would be all my fault!

    Gongsun Yunchangs analysis was reasonable, it made the inexperienced Wei Yunpengs hair stand on end, he couldnt help nod and say, I will explain all this to Father, but who can say whether he will give up his plan, he doesnt change his mind easily.

    Gongsun Yunchang left the Wei family the following morning, and the Wei family finally resumed its former tranquility.

    Little Yunfei left shoulderblade had been hit with an arrow, fortunately the bone had stopped it and there was no internal injury, he used some medicine on the wound and in one or two days was all right.

    Seeing off Gongsun Yunchang the little guy pulled on his sister Chunchuns hand, but he wasnt heading back home, he was heading down the small path leading to the Zhuang manor.

    Where are you pulling me to? Chunchun said suspiciously.

    To go find Zhuang Yiping, Wei Yunfei said loudly.

    Find him? What for? Were still busy at home

    Sis, dont you find it strange? he said, pulling her along.

    Find what strange? Youre talking nonsense, youre up to something foolish, arent you?

    Remember that day I went with you to Mist and Rain Pavilion to see him, he said we should add more people to the night watch and be on the alrert at night. Neither you nor I paid any attention, after we went back we forgot about it, but what do you know that night something happened. Sis, dont you think thats odd?

    Uh

    How did he know something was going to go down at our house?

    He just got back from roaming the jianghu, he knows a lot of jianghu news

    Didnt he come back at just the right time? The little guy stared at her, eyebrows raised. Who can guarantee he wasnt sent ahead secretly by Merciless Sword?

    Eh! Where do you think youre going? Chunchun said. If he was sent by Merciless Sword, then why would he warn us first?

    So I want to ask him, and he better give me a satisfactory answer, the little guy said furiously.

    You have it out for him, Im not going with you. Chunchun stopped. Based on the fact that he was kind enough to warn us I can guarantee he had nothing to do with it, you mustnt be rude and offend him.

    If you wont go, Im still going.

    Little brother

    The little guy took off, ignoring her shouts.

    She was just about to go after him when she heard Second Brother Yunyis voice behind her, Sister, hurry back, Dad is looking for you.

    She shook her head at the retreating figure of her little brother in the distance, then turned and went back home.

    If she had went with him would would the subsequent problems have sprung up?

    Experienced friends of the jianghu are especially vigilant against three kinds of people: foreigners, women, and children.

    Children ought to be pure and innocent, lovable, guileless. Yet some have particular dispositions, are suffered from upbringing in bad environments, so that even though they still held some of their childishness, it but concealed their primeval unruliness, and it was fearful when it erupted, more violent than an adult, more ruthless and reckless, more impervious to reason.

    This Little Tyrant Wei Yunfei, although he wasnt all that bad a kid, but because he was the spoiled youngest child he had naturally grown wild and arrogant and overbearing and unreasonable, opinionated and judgmental, a detestable attitude that made others unable to put up with him.

    His wound was still wrapped with a cloth so he couldnt run fast, his mind was already ill at ease. It was not easy to find the Zhuang manor, though he bumped into several neighboring villagers.

    These villagers feared the Little Tyrant as if he were a tiger, they carefully avoided him and gave way on the road, staring at him with that fearful and despising glares as he passed.

    This time he was in an even worse mood, the flames of his fury more scorching.

    Luckily, Zhuang Yiping just happened to be exiting the village with one of the manors longtime hired hands to go to the city to handle some affairs.

    Zhuang Yiping saw the enraged Little Tyrant walking quickly toward him. He slowed his pace.

    The hired hand was smart, he said in a low voice, Thats the little beast whos not been taught properly, he must be up to no good, Fourth Young Master, lets steer clear of him.

    No need to avoid him, that wont solve anything. Zhuang Yiping said calmly, These past few days Ive heard too many absurd stories about him, someone ought to teach him some manners for the Wei family, otherwise sooner or later hes going to get himself into some real trouble. Just stand to the side, Ill deal with him.

    Fourth Young Master, you mustnt, the hired hand exhorted him. That little bastard is strong as an ox, his martial arts is very solid, our martial instructors are all afraid of him, you wont be able to reason with him. Look at him, like a ghost ready to devour someone, hes definitely looking for trouble, maybe a goat from our village trampled some of their crops.

    Hes come for me, you hurry on ahead, Ill catch up to you.

    The hired hand shook his head, then left, taking a detour through the weeds.

    Yiping stood with his hands behind his back, waiting for the Little Tyrant to approach.

    The little guy came on arrogantly, thinking Yiping would step to the side according to circumstances, but he was entirely mistaken, Yiping just stood casually in the road waiting for him. His anger erupted like a volcano, once out it couldnt be contained.

    They met face to face, less than eight feet away from each other.

    They stared at each other, for a while, it seemed neither wanted to be the first to break the impasse, like a pair of gamecocks.

    The little guy glowered, insufferably arrogant.

    Yiping watched him indifferently, silent, not moving.

    You did a good deed, the little guy finally said, unable to contain himself. He clenched his teeth. You cant fool me.

    Of course what I do are good deeds, Yiping said sarcastically. Youre really funny, what is a little kid doing handling family affairs? Youre the third brother of the Wei family, what rank do you think you hold with the Zhuang family?

    The little guy shook with anger, springing forward as if he was going to kick.

    Hold it! Yiping shouted heavily, his voice like thunder, like a seismic wave shaking ones liver.

    His flash of anger was powerful, his tiger eyes flashed like divine lightning, his manner intimidating, like a deity guarding a pass.

    The little guy was startled half to death, he stopped dead in his tracks.

    Ill warn you, Yiping said heavily. Youre not a little kid anymore, from here on out youre going to mind your place, you will behave yourself when in my presence, or else Ill send you crying to mommy and daddy, you got it?

    This was the very first time the little guy had been lectured by someone, he was stupefied.

    Listen up, Yiping said, softer. Be reasonable, present your argument in a clear and methodical manner, if you want to fight you can throw down at anytime, I promise you it wont do you any good.

    Yipings softer tone just raised the little guys cockiness, but because he was standing too close to kick, without thinking he threw a punch. His little fist was aiming for Yipings stomach, it was a quick and powerful strike, he didnt seem to be bothered by his shoulder injury.

    Yiping was big and tall, his arms were long, he reached out a hand and grabbed the little guys elbow and dug his ring finger into the tendon between his elbow joint.

    The little guy felt an electric shock, his body shook, he struggled, affecting his wound, his body went limp and he cried out, Let go, letgo

    Yiping waved his hand and the little guy staggered back.

    Had enough? Yiping said. Next time Ill pull out your tendon.


    END CHAPTER 3

  19. #39
    Senior Member spynet's Avatar
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    Thanks for the updates whiteskwirl !

  20. #40
    Senior Member whiteskwirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spynet View Post
    Thanks for the updates whiteskwirl !
    You're welcome!

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