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Thread: The Black Dragon Swordsman

  1. #41
    Junior Member hello me's Avatar
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    so good!!!!!!


    wow, I want more!!!!!


    Long, what a exiciting and enticing chapter....more please...more.

    Cannot wait....

  2. #42
    Junior Member Quantum's Avatar
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    WOW!!!!!
    This is one story i can't wait to read

    This story has a mysterious air to in my point of view.

    I Like it how you give detail description of the moves.
    It made me feel that i could picture it in my mind
    I am not much of a reader until the day i started reading your story.

    Long, can't wait till the next chapter Hope you'll update soon
    To live life like a dream is rare. To let it happen in reality is even more rare.

  3. #43
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    Wow, a descent into hell and a "Butterfly Effect" moment. Interesting expository device there... nicely done.
    HK47: Now do you understand the travails of my existence master? Surely it does not compare to your existence but still...
    You: I survive somehow
    HK47: As do I. It is our lot in life I suppose master. Shall we find something to kill to cheer ourselves up?

    -KotOR

  4. #44
    Senior Member Long's Avatar
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    Default Chapter 11: Demon Cult’s New Chancellor

    Chapter 11: Demon Cult’s New Chancellor

    A middle-aged swordsman in black robes with red trimmings walked forward from the right end of the great hall before leaping down into the duelling pit. One could see that this swordsman wore a red cape with the head of a large black bull embroided on his back. A gold belt with the head of a black bull at its centre was wrapped around his waist. One could see that his robes were torn at shoulders. His arms were as solid as rock and his legs were like the trunk of a tree. His chests were like a plate of iron and he stood at 6’0 tall. He appeared to be a very imposing figure indeed. The complexion of his face was red, and it appeared that white smoke was coming from his nostrils as he breathed in and out. He had a very rough and rugged that was covered in sword scars. It was an indication that he was an experienced fighter. He was carrying a long black pitchfork with three prongs in his hands. The central prong was slightly longer than the prongs to the right and left sides of the pitchfork. This man was none other than the Black Bull Assassin, the 8th senior apprentice of the former leader of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins.

    Not long after a swordsman in plain white robes with black trimmings, and a black cape, walked from the left end of the great hall and joined the Black Bull Assassin in the duelling pit below. A red half-crescent moon was embroided on the top right hand corner of his robes. One could see that he was a very tall and skinny man in his mid 20s. Compared to the imposing figure before him, this swordsman appeared to be as frail as thin strand of reed. But a strand of reed can be very flexible and swift. A pair of short sails was carried in his left hand. A bamboo rain hat rests on his head, helping to shield his face from visible sight. His eyes were blue and glowed underneath the bamboo rain hat. This was an indication that this man possessed some very unique skills and abilities. This man was none other than Rain of the 5 Storms, and one of the 5 Guardians of the Demon Cult.

    “Let the fifth duel commence”, shouted a man in white robes standing at the head of the duelling arena in the great halls. This man was the Deputy Rule Elder. The 3,000 odd spectators in the great hall gave a soft cry in anticipation of another epic battle between the black and the white swordsman who had just entered the duelling arena. It’s obvious that the battle for the Chancellor of the Demon Cult was just hotting up.

    “After you!”, said the Black Bull Assassin in a rough voice whilst cupping his hands and bowing slightly. It was a sign of great respect for his opponent.

    “After you!”, said Rain returning the sporting gesture by cupping his hands together and bowing slightly.

    Before both men had resumed to an upright position, a bright spark flashed and a loud ‘clang’ echoed through the air, as the pitchfork clashed violently with the pair of sails. The Black Bull Assassin and Rain had already had already exchanged a strike at the wink of an eye. The Black Bull Assassin had now motioned forward aiming a powerful strike towards the middle of Rain’s chest. Rain gave a loud cruse before gliding backwards and swiftly turning his upper body to his right to defend the blow with his sails. The large audience roared in approval upon seeing the skills on display. They were eager for more and cheered wildly.

    Rain hissed loudly before motioning forward with his right arm extended to launch a swift counterattack towards the right shoulder of the Black Bull Assassin.

    “Excellent move!”, praised the Black Bull Assassin as he took three paces backwards before twisting his pitchfork from right to left to defend the blow. Bright sparks and another loud ‘clang ‘echoed’ through the air.

    Wasting no time the Black Bull Assassin gave a loud shout. He followed through the motion of his last stance and attacked towards Rain’s lower left abdomen with the end of his pitchfork with the three prongs pointing towards him. Seeing the powerful attack, Rain twisted away to his right and just managed to avoid the strike.

    “Great move!”, praised Rain as he swiftly launched the sail in his left hand into the air like a projectile towards the middle of the Black Bull Assassin’s chest. It flew a great speed and appeared to the naked eye to be a tiny raindrop of silver flowing through the air

    The Black Bull Assassin took evasive action by rolling three times to his left. A ‘cling’ sound echoed through the air moments later as the lone sail hit the right wall of the duelling arena. The sail did not strike into the wall however, but instead it rebounded off the wall before zipping back in the direction from which it came. Rain twisted his body to the left and caught the handle of the sail with his left hand as it flew past. The Black Bull Assassin and Rain exchanged another 30 stances with each other and fought to a standstill. The large audience exploded with loud applause to show their appreciation whenever they saw the flashes of light and sparks in the arena below.

    “This Black Bull Assassin is really an elite fighter! No only does he possess a high level of inner energy, but his lightness kung fu is just as equally good!”, Rain thought inwardly as worked on another plan to defeat his tough but stubborn opponent.

    The Black Bull Assassin roared out loud before once more before launching a strike towards Rain’s head. The strike was both swift and powerful. Rain bent like a reed in the wind and avoided the blow. A sail was launched to attack the head and the right hand of the Black Bull Assassin before Rain had even resumed standing in an upright position. The Black Bull Assassin was a little startled by the quick counterattack. He was at this moment kneeling down on his right knee with the pitchfork extended outwards to follow through on his previous attack that struck nothing but thein air. He could not retract his weapon back in time to block the pair of sails launched at him. He immediately pulled his head back and avoided the first sail.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried the Black Bull Assassin as he was struck on the right hand with the second sail.

    A loud ‘clang’ sound echoed through the air as the swift blow caused the Black Bat Assassin to drop the long and heavy pitchfork onto the ground. Another soft ‘clang’ sound was heard moments later as one of the sails dropped to the ground as well after striking the Black Bull Assassin. But the other sail launched at the Black Bull Assassin’s head rebounded off the wall and had already been retrieved by Rain. He now dashed forward at great speed to launch an attack towards the Black Bull Assassin’s heart.

    Even without a weapon, the Black Bull Assassin was very courageous. He was also rather stubborn and would never admit defeat that easily. He decided to grab onto the blade of Rain’s sail with his left hand to fend off the attack. He immediately felt a burning pain from his left hand as blood flowed freely from the deep wound. But the Black Bull Assassin decided to ignore it before launching a right palm towards Rain’s head. Rain gave a slight shriek and just managed to pull his head back in time to avoid the blow. He then let out a grunt before counterattacking with a strike of his own towards the Black Bull Assassins left shoulder.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried the Black Bull Assassin as he was struck with two fingers on the left shoulder. He left his entire left arm going numb and released his tight grip on the blade of the sail. An indication that his pressure points on the left shoulder had been sealed.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried the Black Bull Assassin only moments later as a blade of the sail penetrated his left stomach. Blood immediately gushed from the wounds. But it was not a serious injury. When he released his grasp on the blade of the sail, Rain had pushed forward continuing with his previous attack. Moments later the Black Bull Assassin felt the tip of the sail pointing towards his adam’s apple pressure point.

    “Do you admit defeat? Or shall I kill you?”, Rain could be heard asking in a chilling voice moments later.

    “Young master Rain! I admit that I am defeated! Thank you for showing me some mercy!”, replied the Black Bull Assassin.

    “It is because I respected your skills and bravery that I have decided to let you live! If it was any other fighter it would be a different matter!”, coldly replied Rain as he withdrew his weapon and unsealed the Black Bull Assassin’s pressure points.

    Rain collected his other sail from the ground before leaping back up to the left side of the hall to receive a warm congratulation from Tit Yum Ching and the others. The Black Bull Assassin on the other hand leaped up onto the right side of the hall with his head down after picking up his long black pitchfork. But his was met by dead silence. Gwai Mo Ming had a disappointed look on his face. Both of his warriors from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins had lost their duel. The Black Bull Assassin immediately sat down and meditated to recover from his injuries. He was not alone as Fung Lau Sit was also sitting by the side of him in deep meditation. She had been there after the first duel.

    “The fifth duel has been won by the Sacred Lady. She now leads this series of duels at 3-2! The next duel is between the White Maiden and Thunder! Let the two fighters step forward and assume their places in the duelling pit!”, shouted the Deputy Rule Elder once more.

    “How is he?”, Fung Mun Kit could be heard asking before stepping forward from the right end of the great hall. She was referring to Yeung Yin Siu.

    “He’s barely alive! Hopefully we can divert enough of our inner energy to get him through this difficult phase!”, replied Fung Lau Yin.

    At this moment, one could see that Fung Lau Yin was sitting on the floor directly behind Yeung Yin Siu who had been propped up onto a meditating position. Both of her arms had been extended to channel her inner energy through the right and left side of Yeung Yin Siu’s shoulders. This was a last stitched effort to heal Yeung Yin Siu’s internal injuries. Everyone knew that Yeung Yin Siu had been in a critical position when he fainted in the duelling arena like that after defeating Cloud in the previous duel. He had actually stopped breathing for around 30 seconds until Fung Lau Yin had sealed all of the pressure points around the injury. She then striked a phantom palm onto his heart and managed to just revive him through the shock of receiving a powerful palm. Though he had been breathing very faintly, he was just barely alive at this moment.

    In front of Yeung Yin Siu sat Siu Wai to the right and her elder sister Siu Wah to the left. It was obvious that Siu Wai was channelling her inner energy through the right arm of Yeung Yin Siu, and Siu Wah to the left. Smoke and vapour was rising from the heads of all three ladies indicating that they had burnt a lot of their inner energy. Steam was also rising from Yeung Yin Siu’s head. Sweat was flowing freely from his forehead and face, indicating that his core body temperature had been rising somewhat and that he was slightly over heated as a result of losing too much blood. But there was no other way in which to cure him at this moment in time.

    “Sister, if I didn’t have to fight this round I would have already used my inner energy to help you save him! You know that!”, remarked Fung Mun Kit giving a slight sigh.

    “So would I! But I need to preserve energy for the upcoming fight!”, replied Gwai Mo Ming standing to the side with a concern look on his face. He was grateful that Yeung Yin Siu had won his match as it was indeed turned out to be a critical one. But he knew he could not afford to burn any inner energy before his big match against Lightning.

    “If I wasn’t injured, I would have saved Fisherman Ho already!”, remarked Kiu Pin Fok in a low voice. He had been very concerned as well and cursed himself for being injured.

    “Okay! Okay! I realise everyone is concerned! But I still need to concentrate on healing Fisherman Ho’s injury and would appreciate it if everyone stayed quite!”, protested Fung Lau Yin sounding very annoyed. She loved Yeung Yin Siu like a son and thus did not want anyone to distract her from healing his injuries.

    Sitting by Yeung Yin Siu’s side all this time was Bak Tin Kiew. She was chewing on medical herbs and applying it to Yeung Yin Siu’s wounds. Upon seeing that Yeung Yin Siu had fainted in the duelling pit, Tit Yum Ching gave an order to a couple of Demon Cult members to fetch some medical herbs. A small porcelain bowl was sitting to the side of Bak Tin Kiew. Once she had finished applying the medical herbs to the wounds, she took out a small blade and slashed her left wrist and placed it over the porcelain bowl.

    “Eh! Little apprentice! What are you doing?”, asked Fung Mun Kit in shock upon seeing that Bak Tin Kiew had slashed her wrist.

    Bak Tin Kiew had studied medical books before, when she tried to uncover the mystery of the wounds on her mother’s body, and was thus aware that when I person had lost a lot of blood they needed to replace it with more blood otherwise they would die. She replied, “Fisherman Ho’s lost a lot of blood! So I’m just donating a small bowl of my blood to help him heal his internal injuries!”.

    “What good is that going to do?”, rebutted Siu Wai to the side.

    “Eh! Siu Wai! You don’t know that much! That little girl is right! Fisherman Ho will need some more blood! In fact 20 years ago I saved the life of my sworn sister by doing exactly the same thing!”, replied Fung Lau Yin with a smile on her face.

    Seeing that Bak Tin Kiew had already filled the bowl with blood, Fung Lau Yin continued, “Let’s stop channelling our inner energy into Fisherman Ho’s body now so that the little girl can pour a bowl of blood down his throat!”.

    Moments later, Bak Tin Kiew sealed the pressure point to her left wrist to stop the blood from flowing. She then poured the bowl of blood down Yeung Yin Siu’s throat. As expected Yeung Yin Siu’s breathing became a little stronger upon drinking the bowl of blood. His pulse had also gotten stronger and it appeared as if he was coming around a little bit. His core body temperature had also dropped. Everyone felt a little relaxed upon seeing that Yeung Yin Siu’s face had regained a reddish complexion and was no longer as pale white as before.

    “Eh! Little girl, it’s too soon to stop! He’ll need at least another two bowls of your blood!”, said Fung Lau Yin upon seeing that Bak Tin Kiew had stopped donating her blood.

    Bak Tin Kiew unsealed her pressure points and poured another two bowls of blood for Yeung Yin Siu. She suddenly felt a little dizzy herself. But she felt extremely happy upon seeing that Yeung Yin Siu’s face had returned to normal upon drinking another two bowls of blood. Even though he was still passed out and breathing a little faintly, it was certain that he would come around, sooner or later. It was just a matter of time.

    “Thank you little girl!”, said Fung Lau Yin turning to Bak Tin Kiew.

    “It’s nothing! Fisherman Ho is a friend of mine!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew.

    “Let’s channel and concentrate our inner energy to the lower stomach regions now! This should bring him through the crisis!”, ordered Fung Lau Yin as she gave instructions to Siu Wai and Siu Wah and turned her attention back to healing Yeung Yin Siu once more.

    “Oi! White Maiden, are you going to fight or not? We’re waiting!”, shouted the Deputy Rule Elder.

    “Alright I am coming!”, replied Fung Mun Kit as she leaped down into the duelling pit to join Thunder. He had been waiting down at the duelling pit now for sometime.

    “Let the sixth duel commence!”, shouted the Deputy Rule Elder upon seeing that the two fighters had taken up their positions in the duelling pit.

    “After you!”, said Fung Mun Kit upon entering the duelling pit with a bow. She held her butterfly sword in her left hand and the wolf sword in her right hand. Both were in attacking position.

    “After you”, said Thunder returning the gesture with a bow. He held a large hammer in his right hand and a long iron nail in his left hand.

    Before Thunder had even stood upright he clashed the hammer against the nail. The sound of thunder suddenly echoed through the great hall, and the 3,000 plus audience gave a loud cry and cheer, applauding the skills of thunder. Fung Mun Kit countered by striking her butterfly and wolf sword together. It created a high pitch sound. To the spectators it appeared as if a large wolf wings had suddenly emerged in the duelling pit below to swallow the sound waves produced by Thunder. The duelling pit shook violently below as the opposing sound waves collided and cancelled each other out.

    The butterfly sword flashed left creating a bright white light, and the wolf sword flashed right creating a bright red light. The butterfly sword striked towards the right thigh of Thunder and the wolf sword slashed upwards towards the left shoulder. Sparks flew when the iron nail swung across to block the wolf sword and the hammer defended against the butterfly sword. Loud cries erupted once more upon seeing the awesome power on display. Wasting no more time, Thunder launched his hammer forward aimed for Fung Mun Kit’s chest. Fung Mun Kit twisted around and took three paces backwards and avoided the strike. The two fighters exchanged another 40 stances to a standstill.

    Thunder gave a loud roar before smashing his hammer hard onto the ground. The floor shook and one could notice that the ground became like a violent wave of water as dust flew in the air attacking towards Fung Mun Kit. Knowing that she could not defend against the powerful attack, Fung Mun Kit leaped up vertically in the air. The sound of thunder echoed through the great halls once more as the right wall of the duelling pit immediately collapsed as bits of marble flew through the air and landed on the pit below. Gwai Mo Ming and the various others standing near the edge of the duelling pit had to take evasive action to avoid embarrassingly falling into the duelling pit as a result.

    Suddenly a loud ‘clang’ sound echoed through the air as Thunder dropped the iron nail in his left hand. He cried out in pain, “Ah Ya!”.

    Fung Mun Kit had actually launched her butterfly sword in the air attacking towards Thunder’s left shoulder when she leaped into the air. It was so quick and swift, Thunder had not been able to detect the attack, as a result of the dust flying up from the ground, and bits of marble exploding from the right end of the hall. The sword rebounded off the wall shortly after striking Thunder. Fung Mun Kit caught the handle of the sword as it zipped passed her upon landing. Thunder was slightly alarmed at this moment. He had expected that the awesome power generated through his hammer would put him in an advantageous position. He could have never expected that it would have actually backfired on him.

    Realising that she had gained the upper hand in this battle, Fung Mun Kit utilised her lightness kung fu, and zipped up to Thunder and stood around 6 paces in front of him. Thunder extended his arms and launched his hammer at Fung Mun Kit’s stomach. Fung Mun Kit then moved left and avoided the strike. She then took this opportunity to make the first move and flashed right, then left again, and then right again. To the many spectators Fung Mun Kit appeared to be a white blur moving left and right and no one knew she was at this point in time. Getting slightly frustrated, Thunder launched a series of powerful thrusts by extending his arms. But he only managed to strike thin air.

    “Stand and fight if you’ve got the guts!”, protested Thunder upon seeing a white blur zip left and right before his eyes. He could no longer tell where Fung Mun Kit actually stood. He would not be in this position had he did not drop his iron nail. He could have used it to attack to the left and the hammer to the right of Fung Mun Kit. That would certainly force her to leap backwards and defend. But he no longer had this luxury so cursed underneath his breath as he launched a series of blind and aimless attacks in an effort to gain victory by sheer luck.

    Moments later Thunder make up his mind that he would attempt to pick up the iron nail from the floor. He motioned forward towards his right when suddenly he saw a flash of white and a flash red attacking towards his stomach and shoulder from his right. He immediately leaped back and twisted his hammer to block the two attacks. He broke out in cold sweat upon realising that his opponent had him covered regardless of which direction he moved. Except backwards towards the left wall. Attempting to reach the iron nail on the floor would only put him at a further disadvantage. In fact that was the main reason why Fung Mun Kit had raced forward upon realising that Thunder had dropped his iron nail. She had now set up an invisible formation around Thunder and had been waiting patiently for him to make a mistake.

    Thunder had a sudden thought and worked on another plan. A slight smile crepted across his face as he kepted a watchful eye on the white blur and gripped his hammer tightly with both hands. Suddenly he roared out loud before motioning forward to his left. As expected he saw a white and red flash attacking towards him from the left side. As the two blades came forward, Thunder had already stepped back and twisted his body before extended both of his arms forward attacking with his hammer towards the mid-stomach region of Fung Mun Kit. She was slightly caught off guard as she had not expected Thunder to throw a fake, before counterattacking.

    Suddenly a loud and chilling cry of, “Nooooooooo!”, echoed through the great halls and sent a shiver down everyone’s spine and made them leap up in fright. It was a cry filled with great regret, sorrow, and grief.

    Both Thunder and Fung Mun Kit became slightly startled having no expected to hear such a loud and painful scream that they momentarily became distracted. But Fung Mun Kit was the quickest to respond. By now she had retracted both her swords and twisted right to just avoid the hammer being thrusted forward by Thunder. Moments later a white and red flash attacked towards the right side of Thunder’s unguarded body.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried Thunder as the butterfly sword pierced his right stomach region. Blood immediately gushed out from the wounds, but it wasn’t serious.

    “Ah Ya”, cried Thunder only moments later as the wolf sword pierced his shoulder. But it wasn’t serious either. A loud ‘clang’ was heard moments later as the heavy hammer hit the floor. Thunder could suddenly feel a sword placed against his adam’s apple point.

    “Do you admit defeat? Or would rather die!”, shouted Fung Mun Kit as she stood over her fallen opponent.

    “Humph! If it wasn’t for that chilling scream! I wouldn’t have been distracted and would have never loss!”, protested Thunder as he punched the ground with his fist.

    “No excuses! Besides, I had you covered even without that sort distraction! Are you going to admit defeat or not?”, Fung Mun Kit asked for a second time.

    Thunder gave a loud sigh before replying, “Okay! Okay! I admit that I am defeated!”.

    Thunder picked himself and his weapons up before leaping to the left side of the great hall to join Tit Yum Ching and the others. He was greatly disappointed at having lost.

    Moments later, Fung Mun Kit leaped to join the others on the right side of the great hall. She asked in a concern voice, “How’s Fisherman Ho?”.

    “Big sister, see for yourself!”, replied Fung Lau Yin with a calm voice.

    One could now see that Yeung Yin Siu eye’s were wide open, though he appeared to be a little dazed and confused still. He was mumbling something under his weak breath and no one understood what he was saying. He was repeating over and over again, “It cannot be…”.

    Mixed in between was, “Gentleman East rules with…”.

    But everyone could tell that Yeung Yin Siu had recovered somewhat and was no longer in a critical condition as he had been moments earlier. Being awake and conscious was a very good sign indeed.

    “So he’ll be okay!”, asked Gwai Mo Ming before stepping forward from the right end of the great hall.

    “He’ll return to normal in a few moments time! He’s a little disorientated at the moment. But that’s to be expected!”, replied Fung Lau Yin. One could now see that sweat was flowing freely from her forehead and face. She looked very tired and weary. A sign that she had burnt up a lot of energy to revive Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Chief Gwai, everyone has done their jobs! It’s still tied at 3 to 3! It’s up to you now to snatch what you’ve always wanted! The balance of power in wulin now rests in your hands!”, Fung Mun Kit could be heard saying to the side of Gwai Mo Ming. The major reason why she had returned to China was ensure that Gwai Mo Ming and his supporters win the leadership of the Demon Cult. That would ensure peace in wulin for at least another few years as Gwai Mo Ming was not the type to seek world domination. Gwai Mo Ming did not reply. He remained silent.

    “The sixth duel has been won by Clan Leader Gwai. This series of duels is now tied at 3-3! The next and final duel is between Clan Leader Gwai and Lightning! This contest will determine who the Chancellor will be! Best of luck to both sides! Let the two fighters step forward and assume their places in the duelling pit!”, shouted the Deputy Rule Elder once more.

    “Good luck!”, Tit Yum Ching could be heard saying to Lightning at the left side of the great hall.

    “Sacred Lady, thank you for your concern! But I can assure you that this match is ours!”, replied Lightning in a confident tone before leaping down onto the duelling pit below. Lightning carried no weapon in hand. His zigzagged sword was strapped to his back. He had intended to fight bare handed against Gwai Mo Ming. This was rather usual indeed.

    Gwai Mo Ming joined him moments later. He carried a plain long black sword in his hand with a human skull carved into the hilt of the sword.

    “Let the final duel commence!”, shouted the Deputy Rule Elder from above upon seeing that both fighters had taken their places in the duelling pit.

    “After you!”, shouted Gwai Mo Ming as he cupped his hands and bowed to show his respects to his opponent.

    “After you!”, shouted Lightning was returned the sporting gesture by cupping his hands before bowing slightly.

    Gwai Mo Ming immediately crouched down with the sword tip pointed forward in an attacking position. His right leg was bent with his toe pointing in the direction of his opponent. He did not attack, but rather waited for his opponent to make the first move so that he could counterattack instead. Lightning observed the positioning of his opponent and a smile suddenly flashed across his face.

    “So he wants me to attack first!”, Lightning thought to himself.

    One could see that Lightning’s luminous blue eyes were glowing underneath the bamboo rain hat. It suddenly became brighter as Lightning brought his hands together before suddenly striking out with both of his hands. A blue flash of lightning emerged from his palms and attacked towards Gwai Mo Ming’s chest. Gwai Mo Ming dodged to the left and avoided the strike. A loud ‘boom’ sound echoed through the great hall moments later as bits of marble flew in the air as the power of the lightning strike struck against the wall. Wasting no time, Lightning launched another five strikes. Gwai Mo Ming had utilised his ghost mountain lightness kung fu, and rolled continuously along the ground, but had only narrowly avoided the strikes. He broke out in cold sweat upon realising the awesome power possessed by his opponent. Not only was his inner energy strong, but his lightness kung fu was also good. The two fighters exchanged around another 30 stances with each other. But at no time was Gwai Mo Ming allowed to attack. He was defending furiously.

    Lightning finally realised that he wasn’t going to be able to land a blow on Gwai Mo Ming with one of his lightning strikes from a distance. His opponent possessed very good lightness kung fu. He decided to kick against the wall from where he stood and launched himself horizontally in the air with both of his palms forward at Gwai Mo Ming. Upon seeing the attack, Gwai Mo Ming held out his black sword with the tip pointed towards the head of Lightning. He had expected Lightning to abort his attack upon seeing this stance. But to his surprise, Lightning continued forward. A loud ‘clang’ echoed through the air as Lightning clasped the blade between his palms as he pushed Gwai Mo Ming towards the left end of the wall. Gwai Mo Ming tried to resist the force by channelling all of his inner energy to the tip of the sword, but he could still feel himself being forced backwards at great speed. An indication that Lightning possessed greater inner energy.

    “Dam he’s powerful!”, Gwai Mo Ming thought to himself as he let go of his black sword and rolled to the side to avoid being pushed and crushed against the wall.

    Gwai Mo Ming was not at all concerned with losing his sword. Instead he decided to channel all of his inner energy through his palms as he launched a series of ghost palms towards Lightning. To the spectators it appeared as if there were a number of luminous skeletons were flying through the air attacking towards Lightning. To everyone’s surprise, Lightning stood there with his arms folded. Just when it appeared as if he would be hit with a ghost palm, Lightning appeared to have disappeared and moved to another area in the duelling pit. He had some how managed to teleport himself out of the danger with great ease. That required exceptional lightness kung fu. Suddenly Gwai Mo Ming saw a series of blue lightning flashes attacking towards him. They attacked towards his head, right and left shoulders. Gwai Mo Ming defended with this strike by launching three ghost palms forward. The duelling pit shook violently once more as the two opposing forces cancelled each other.

    Gwai Mo Ming then rolled forward to retrieve his sword from the ground. He immediately rushed forward like a black shadow and stood three paces before Lightning. He slashed downwards with his sword to strike a blow down towards his opponent’s head. Lightning suddenly appear to have evaporated from sight as the sword met with thin air upon striking downwards.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried Gwai Mo Ming as he had been hit squarely in the back with a lightning palm and was sent crashing against the front wall of the duelling pit. Lightning had teleported behind him before launching the strike with his palms.

    Moments later Gwai Mo Ming felt the tip of a sword placed against his adam’s apple pressure point. It appeared as if Lightning had suddenly teleported to where he stood. Picking himself off the floor before coughing up a mouthful of blood, Gwai Mo Ming threw his sword down in disgust. He shouted, “I’m old and have become useless! I admit that I am defeated!”.

    Gwai Mo Ming realise that he was no match for Lightning. In fact to the 3,000 spectators watching the fight, it appeared as if Lightning was virtually unbeatable and possessed some super natural powers. Even the Black Dragon Swordsman might have struggled to defeat him.

    Lightning did not reply but could be heard laughing out loud a short distance away. The laugh was filled with joy and triumph. He leapted up to the left end of the great hall. Dropping to his knees he said, “Congratulations Sacred Lady! You’re now the new Chancellor of the Demon Cult!”.

    “It’s all thanks to you and everyone who fought today! Otherwise I would not have been able to obtain this position!”, replied Tit Yum Ching as she turned thank each and every one of her fighters.

    Gwai Mo Ming picked himself up from the duelling pit before taking a seat at the right end of the great hall. One could tell that he was greatly disappointed at having been defeated. Though Fung Lau Yin was still sitting on the floor to channel inner energy into Yeung Yin Siu’s body, once could notice that she had shot a suspicious glance across at Gwai Mo Ming. She then resumed healing Yeung Yin Siu.

    The Rule Elder stood forward before shouting, “The seventh and final duel has been won by the Sacred Lady. She has won the series of duels 4-3!”.

    A loud cheer exploded through the great halls. Turning to Gwai Mo Ming, the Deputy Rule Elder asked, “Clan Leader Gwai, do you have anything further to add?”.

    Still looking disappointed and dejected, Gwai Mo Ming replied, “I have nothing further to add! The Sacred Lady and her supporters won the leadership battle fair and square. I have no complaints or appeals to lodge against any of her fighters!”.

    “It’s official then! Let everyone here now congratulate the Sacred Lady, Tit Yum Ching, as the 56th Chancellor of the Demon Cult! The Scared Lady will be officially sworn at the traditional ceremony in the morning! I hope everyone can stay here till then!”, shouted the Deputy Rule Elder raising both of his hands in the air.

    “Congratulations Sacred Lady!”, cried the 3,000 odd members in the great hall. The cheers, cries, and applause lasted for another 5 minutes as the pillars of the great halls shook from the over bearing noise.

    Tit Yum Ching and her supporters took this opportunity to climb the steps next to the duelling arena to the second level at the front of the hall. She now sat herself at the Chancellor’s chair, and the 3 Fingered Demon Zither and the 7 Fingered Demon Flute sat to the left and right sides of her. The 5 Storms now stood behind her with their arms folded.

    Holding both of his hands in the air again to silence the crowd, the Deputy Rule Elder continued speaking in a very loud voice, “Now that we have elected a new Chancellor to govern over the affairs of our Sect! It is now time for me to pass over the proceedings of this annual general meeting back to our new Chancellor, Tit Yum Ching!”.

    “Thank you Rule Elder! According to our ancient rules it is now time to name a Deputy Chancellor who will govern over the affairs of our Sect when I am not available!”, remarked Tit Yum Ching as she stood forward to face the 3,000 odd members.

    Shifting her glance from Gwai Mo Ming and then to Lightning, Tit Yum Ching continued, “I now name Clan Leader Gwai as the Deputy Chancellor!”.

    There was a long silence in the great hall as no one had expected Tit Yum Ching to name a rival as the Deputy Chancellor. Lightning of the 5 Storms casted an annoyed look back at her. He remained silent and folded his arms in disgust.

    Hearing no response, Tit Yum Ching asked in a curious voice, “Well! Clan Leader Gwai! Do you accept?”.

    Still looking disappointed and dejected, Gwai Mo Ming replied, “Scared Lady! Thank you for your invitation to be the Deputy Chancellor! However I am old and this position is better left to be occupied by the more youthful!”.

    “Eh! Chief Gwai, I seriously ask you to reconsider your decision! All of the fighters who fought for you today had hoped that you accept this position!”, interrupted Fung Mun Kit trying to change Gwai Mo Ming’s mind.

    “Chief Gwai, you must accept this position! It is the reason why Brother Kiu and I have decided to come out of our peaceful retirement for the past 20 years! We would not have interfered in this matter otherwise!”, agreed Fung Lau Yin trying persuade Gwai Mo Ming to reconsider his decision.

    “Senior apprentice brother, you must be kidding! You convinced me to come all this way and now you’re saying you don’t want to be the Deputy Chancellor? Humph! If I’ve known that earlier I would have stayed and recovered from my injuries in Louyang! This is the last time that I’m ever going to do anything for you again!”, protested Kiu Pin Fok as he was coughing wildly.

    “Please reconsider Chief Gwai!”, agreed Fung Lau Sit to the side. His refusal to take up the position of Deputy Chancellor of the Demon Cult would put the small 7 Vixens clan in a dangerous position. She knew that the 5 Storms would never let them off the hook that easily for supporting the leadership challenge of another candidate other than Tit Yum Ching.

    “Thank you all for your concern! But I have already made up my mind! I’m old and will retire from wulin shortly! I will therefore not accept this post!”, replied Gwai Mo Ming. He only wanted to be the Chancellor of the Demon Cult. Having failed to accomplish his goal, he no longer cared about anything else. His many supporters stood to the side with stunned looks on their faces. To them it appeared as if Gwai Mo Ming had momentarily lost his senses and had not properly assessed the proposal being put forward by Tit Yum Ching.

    “In that case, I’ll now name Lightning as the Deputy Chancellor!”, Tit Yum Ching decided to say upon hearing the response from Gwai Mo Ming.

    Fung Mun Kit, Fung Lau Yin, and Kiu Pin Fok gasped upon hearing that Lightning was going to be named as the Deputy Chancellor. They could tell there was going to be unspoken trouble in wulin in the future. But there was nothing that they could do at this moment in time. They had done their part to keep the peace, but it appeared as if fate was now against them.

    Turning around to cast a glance at Lightning, Tit Yum Ching continued in a curious voice, “Well Lightning do you accept?”.

    “Scared Lady, I accept this position with pride and will support you throughout your term as the Chancellor!”, replied Lightning whilst cupping his hands and bowing slightly. His luminous blue eyes became brighter and one could see that his face carried with it a slight wicked grin.

    Lightning then went over to sit at the Deputy Chancellor’s seat. He lent back comfortably in the chair to observe the rest of the proceedings. Thunder, Rain, Cloud and Win followed him over to the Deputy Chancellor’s seat and stood behind him with their arms folded.

    “Since Lightning has accepted the post of Deputy Chancellor, the 5 Storms can no longer hold the post as the Guardians of our Sect. I therefore name and promote the ‘5 Elements’, current Regional Commanders, Red Flame, Blue Water, Yellow Air, Brown Wood, and Black Earth as the new Guardians. Their vacant Regional Commander positions will be filled at our next meeting!”, shouted Tit Yum Ching as she motioned her hands to the 5 Elements.

    Moments later, Red Flame, Blue Water, Yellow Air, Brown Wood and Black Earth, made their way to the front of the hall. They bowed and stood behind Tit Yum Ching with their arms folded.

    Clearing her voice, Tit Yum Ching continued with the formalities, “I will also promote Deputy Rule Elder Kwan to the position of Rule Elder. Siu Wah of the 7 Vixens will now occupy the Deputy Rule Elder position! Thunder, Rain, Cloud, and Wind will now hold the positions of Guardians of the Deputy Chancellor!”.

    “Thank you!”, said former Deputy Rule Elder Kwan, Siu Wah, Thunder, Rain, Cloud and Wind accepting their new posts. The Rule Elder changed his seat. Siu Wah stopped channelling her inner energy into Yeung Yin Siu’s body and approached the front of the hall. She bowed and took up her seat next to the new Rule Elder.

    Holding both her hands up in the air, Tit Yum Ching continued, “That concludes all of today’s activities and the annual general meeting is closed for the day! As Rule Elder Kwan has said! Everyone will be officially sworn into their posts at the traditional ceremony held in the morning! I hope everyone can stay until then!”.

    “Tonight we shall have a feast in celebration of our new Chancellor! I hope everyone can stay to enjoy the celebrations. It is now 6.00pm! The feast will commence at 8.00pm here in the great hall! Also I hope everyone can stay for the traditional ceremony! Drinks and light refreshments are provided at the Garden of Fate outside the right entrance of the great hall! Please proceed there now!”, shouted Lightning as she stood up and walked to the front of the hall. It was his duty to organise the feat and celebration as Deputy Chancellor.

    Upon hearing there was going to be a feast and celebration later on in the evening the 3,000 odd members cheered and applauded loudly. Many of the started to leave the great hall towards the right exit and headed to the Garden of Fate on the island outside to rest and recuperate before the evening’s celebration. Lightning, Thunder, Rain, Cloud, and Wind could now be seen running around giving various orders to a number of Demon Cult members. Some were ordered to move chairs and tables into the great hall. Some were directed to the kitchens, and others were ordered to repair the duelling pit. The other Demon Cult members were ordered to take care of the various guests outside.

    “Chief Gwai, should we stay or should we go?”, asked Fung Mun Kit to break the silence. But he did not respond.

    “Big sister, I think we should stay! Too many of us are injured to be risking a journey in the dark! We should set of first thing in the morning!”, replied Fung Lau Yin whilst standing up. One could now see that Yeung Yin Siu had recovered and was laying on a stretcher on the floor next to Kiu Pin Fok. His eyes were wide open and it appeared has if he could hear and understood the conversations around him. Siu Wai and Bak Tin Kiew sat either side of him with concerned looks on their faces.

    “It would be rude and a sign of disrespect to the new Chancellor if we were to leave now! We should therefore stay for the feast at least!”, agreed Fung Lau Sit nodding her head in agreement.

    “Fisherman Ho needs some rest! We should stay!”, added Siu Wai and Bak Tin Kiew almost simultaneously.

    “It’s agreed then! We will stay for the celebrations and head of in the morning!”, replied Gwai Mo Ming still looking disheartened. He disappeared from the great hall moments later to get some air. All of the elite fighters from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins followed him outside to the Garden of Fate. Fung Lau Sit, Siu Wah and the rest of the 7 Vixens followed him shortly afterwards. The only people remaining in the great hall were Fung Mun Kit, Fung Lau Yin, Siu Wai, Kiu Pin Fok, Yeung Yin Siu, and Bak Tin Kiew.

    “Auntie, can I have a few words alone with you and Kiu Pin Fok please!”, Yeung Yin Siu suddenly decided to ask in a weak but serious voice. Though his body hurt all over, he was now okay, and passed beyond the critical stage.

    “Okay! Please leave us!”, replied Fung Lau Yin whilst waving her hand to the others to leave them for a moment. Fung Mun Kit and Siu Wai walked out of the great hall to join Gwai Mo Ming and the others outside. Bak Tin Kiew went along with them reluctantly.

    “What is it?”, continued Fung Lau Yin upon seeing that everyone had left them. She had no idea what Yeung Yin Siu had wanted to say, but was glad to hear that he was okay and was now able to talk. Earlier he was still a little dazed and was saying a lot of things that didn’t really make sense.

    “Auntie, when you and my mother took an oath of sisterhood! What did she give you in exchange for your red wolf danger?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in a curious voice.

    “Sister Lok gave me one of her jade butterflies! Why do you ask?”, replied Fung Lau Yin as she reached into her pockets and pulled out the piece of jade that was carefully handcrafted into the shape of a butterfly.

    “Nothing! May I have a look at it please?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu as he reached out a hand to take the jade butterfly.

    “Why of course! Here you are!”, replied Fung Lau Yin in a very curious voice. This had been the first time that Yeung Yin Siu had been so secretive as to not reveal to her as to what was on his mind. She was slightly stunned and intrigued at the same time. She suddenly had a thought.

    “Do you think that sister Lok has left some clues behind on the jade butterfly as to where she has hidden the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Art?”, Fung Lau Yin couldn’t help but ask upon seeing how Yeung Yin Siu was carefully observing the piece of jade.

    Pausing for a moment, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “It’s possible! I just have a strange feeling that she has! As you well know, my mother was very clever! She would never allow anyone to locate the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Art that easily!”.

    “You’re right! Sister Lok was indeed a very clever woman!”, agreed Fung Lau Yin. She now understood a little more about why Lok Gum Fa had suddenly decided to propose that they take an oath of sisterhood at the Chongqing Gardens, down by the lake. Lok Gum Fa figured that she must have been dying and had three great concerns in her heart that particular night. One of them was to find the Black Dragon Swordsman. The other reason was she wanted to find a good parent for her son. Finally she wanted to make sure that, other than her son, no one would be able to locate the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Art.

    A smile flashed across Fung Lau Yin’s face upon coming to this realisation. She thought inwardly, “So the Heretic Maiden is indeed very clever and cunning!”.

    “Well! Do you see anything?”, asked Fung Lau Yin.

    “Nothing!” replied Yeung Yin Siu as he held the piece of jade close to his eyes so that he could study it very carefully. He knew that his mother would not just leave clues that anyone odd fool could find. He suddenly had a thought. Instead of looking at the piece of jade, he ran his fingers along the surface and each curve.

    “Ah Ha!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu after around 5 minutes of feeling the piece of jade with his fingers. It appeared as if some words had been carved alongside of the left wing.

    “What did you find?”, Fung Lau Yin and Kiu Pin Fok asked simultaneously.

    “Look here! There appears to be some very small words written on the left wing! But I cannot make out what words they are! The characters must be very ancient!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu in a very excited voice whilst pointing to the corner of the left wing.

    “Here let me take a look!”, said Fung Lau Yin as she took the piece of jade and held it towards the candle light from one of the pillars for a closer look.

    Pausing for a while she continued, “Yes, you’re right there appears to be some characters carved onto the left wing! But I cannot read the words. They look very unusual!”.

    “Perhaps, it’s because you’re illiterate!” interrupted Kiu Pin Fok with a grin on his face as he sat up from his stretcher.

    “Why you… After all these years you’re still so irritating as ever! I’m not illiterate! Just shut your stinky mouth and mind your own business!”, protested Fung Lau Yin looking very annoyed.

    “And yet after all these years, you still don’t get it! I only take orders from my Queen! Besides this is the Little Prince’s problem and not yours! So he needs my help on this one! So it is my business too! Just you remember that I am his uncle!”, rebutted Kiu Pin Fok whilst stroking his beard.

    Hearing no response, Kiu Pin Fok continued, “Here! Give it to me! Let the Emperor take a look! He’ll solve this mystery!”.

    “Humph! Okay, if you think you’re so clever take a look for yourself!”, replied Fung Lau Yin as she handed the piece of jade over to Kiu Pin Fok.

    Kiu Pin Fok held it in the air towards the candlelight whilst stroking his beard at the same time. After a while a wide grin flashed across his face. He shouted, “Ah Ha! I told you that the Emperor would solve this mystery!”.

    “Uncle, what did you find?”, Yeung Yin Siu couldn’t help but ask. His face was full of excitement and anticipation.

    “Little prince, your mother was indeed very clever! She has written these words backwards!”, replied Kiu Pin Fok.

    Turning to Fung Lau Yin, Kiu Pin Fok asked, “Hey old hag, can I lend one of your swords!”.

    “Here! Don’t blame me if you can’t catch it!”, replied Fung Lau Yin as she threw one of her twin blades forward at great speed. She was clearly annoyed by Kiu Pin Fok’s remarks.

    “Ouch! What are you trying to do? Kill me?”, protested Kiu Pin Fok upon being struck on the chest with the twin blade. It was still in its sheath so did not really hurt at all.

    “Eh! Uncle, stop messing around! What can you see? Are you able to read the words and tell me what they say?”, interrupted Yeung Yin Siu. He knew if he did not step in, Fung Lau Yin and Kiu Pin Fok could go on arguing for sometime.

    Holding the left end of the jade butterfly wing over the twin blades. Reading the words reflected over the blade, Kiu Pin Fok replied, “Little prince, the words carved here are Golden Lion Cave!”.

    “You’ll find that the Golden Lion Cave is located outside Yicheng City north of the Hugang province! It’s near the Yangtse River! Indeed it is highly probable that Sister Lok has hidden the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Art in those caves!”, interrupted Fung Lau Yin.

    “That’s certain!”, agreed Kiu Pin Fok.

    “Hmm. That’s very unusual! The two of you actually agreeing to something!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu upon noticing that for once Kiu Pin Fok and Fung Lau Yin did not argue with each other.

    Sitting up all of a sudden, Yeung Yin Siu, decided to say with a determined look, “I’ll head off to Yicheng after I’ve recovered from my injuries then! It’s about time that I reclaim what is mine!”.

    “Eh! Little prince, don’t be so happy just yet! Your mother was a most clever woman! I doubt that this would be the last clue that will lead you to the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Arts. In fact this may just be the beginning of your search!”, replied Kiu Pin Fok in a serious voice.

    “I agree! There was probably a very good reason why your mother wrote those words backwards! But you should start at the Golden Lion Cave never the less!”, agreed Fung Lau Yin.

    Yeung Yin Siu nodded his head to indicate that he agreed. Turning to Kiu Pin Fok, he decided to ask, “Uncle, I never had the chance to ask you this before! But when the Black Dragon Swordsman attacked you in Chongqing, where were you? What did he looked like? Are you certain it was him?”.

    “Wow! Wow! Little prince, you’re asking way too many question all at once!”, protested Kiu Pin Fok waving his hands in the air.

    Clearing his voice, Kiu Pin Fok retold his story. He said, “That particular day, I heard some of the locals mentioned that they had run into a very odd and eccentric man wearing a torn and weathered black robe! They said he wore a red cape with a black dragon emroided onto the back. He carried a short black sabre that was strapped to the side of his right leg! Apparently he had been carrying the head from a clay statute of the Buddha over his shoulders as he walked through the streets of Chongqing! Naturally a number of people were upset of this disrespectful gesture to the Buddha and went to confront him! I heard that over 50 people died at the edge of his black dragon sabre that day. He was said to have been shouting ‘well where’s your Buddha to protect you now? Surely if he existed he would have stopped me by now! Ha! Ha! Ha!’ as he was chopping the heads of people from the shoulders!”

    Pausing for some breath, Kiu Pin Fok continued, “So naturally I thought that he was indeed your father, Yeung Tin Lung, so went to investigate to see if the rumours were true! I wanted to know for sure whether he was still alive or not! I asked one of the locals about the statute of Buddha incident! Apparently the Black Dragon Swordsman had invaded the headquarters of the Emei Sect before totally destroying their large clay statute of the Buddha. This was said to be done in pay back for the events that occurred 20 years ago, when 5 apprentices from the Emei Sect mortally wounded his wife, your mother, Lok Gum Fa! He chopped of the head of the Buddha and claimed it to be his own. He left words on the belly of the statute saying that, ‘I am an immortal. I therefore cannot die. I am thus no lesser than a god! In fact don’t believe in any gods! They’re nothing but lies! If the Buddha exists and wishes to seek revenge then he may do so! I will be waiting at 8.00pm at the Phoenix Gardens! Does the Buddha accept the challenge or is the Buddha nothing more than just a plain cowards?’. And with that he left Emeishan!”.

    “That man sounds as if he is insane or has gone mad with rage! Are you sure that it was my father?”, interrupted Yeung Yin Siu not having been 100% certain that his father was capable of doing such a thing.

    “Eh, little prince don’t interrupt me! I was getting to it!”, protested Kiu Pin Fok.

    “That night I decided to head off to the Phoenix Gardens and hid in the bushes to wait for his arrival! I figured that if he were the real Black Dragon Swordsman, he would have been able to identify me in the dark with his divine 9 dragon inner energy! If he were fake then he would not have been able to identify me! That night around 20 nuns from the Emei Sect went to confront him! All the Black Dragon Swordsman did was laughed. I heard him say, ‘What are you mere mortals doing here? Besides looking for an early death! I am immortal and will only duel with the Buddha! Go away or die!’. Naturally the 20 apprentices of the Emei Sect did not leave. They surrounded the Black Dragon Swordsman and attacked. But as one would expect, they were no match for him and were thus all brutally murdered that night! But for some reason the Black Dragon Swordsman did not appear to notice that I was hiding nearby!”, continued Kiu Pin Fok.

    “I don’t understand! If he didn’t know you were hiding in the Phoenix Gardens, how were you injured at the edge of his blade?”, interrupted Fung Lau Yin with a very curious voice. This was actually the first time she’s heard the full story about how Kiu Pin Fok was actually injured from the beginning. When Kiu Pin Fok had initially told her the story, he was cursing underneath his breath that it was the Black Dragon Swordsman who had injured him.

    “Because I wanted to test whether the man who stood in the Phoenix Gardens was fake or the real Black Dragon Swordsman! So I stepped out to confront him. I said, ‘Oi! You’re not a loyal subject of Chongqing! And you must therefore pay your taxes before leaving!’. If he was the real Black Dragon Swordsman he would have recognise me! But surprisingly he replied, ‘Who the heck are you?’! I therefore reached the conclusion from those comments that he was indeed nothing more than just an imposter! So I charged at him! But who could have guessed that he would know the divine 9 dragon stance, the most powerful stance from the Black Dragon Sword Arts and was thus injured by his blade. But something strange then happened after that!”, continued Kiu Pin Fok. He was half talking and half shaking his head at being attacked that night.

    “What happened?”, Yeung Yin Siu couldn’t help but ask.

    “A young swordsman dressed in plain white robes emerged from the darkness shouting, ‘I’m Fa Fei Sit! Swordsman from the Himalaya! I heard that the Sabre Saint Invincible West is reigning Grand Champion of Wulin’. To that the Black Dragon Swordsman replied coldly, ‘So what’. The young man replied, ‘I’m here to challenge you to a duel!’. To that the Black Dragon Swordsman said, ‘Humph! You’re not worthy yet!’. He then left the Phoenix Gardens without saying another word. The young white swordsman named Fa Fie Sit pursued after him! It was then I decided to leave Chongqing and headed to Luoyang! I knew it was not safe there for me any more! But I was still in some pain at that time. That was when she found me!”, replied Kiu Pin Fok whilst pointing a finger at Fung Lau Yin.

    “From what you’ve been saying, it appears that the man who attacked you that night was nothing more than an imposter posing as the Black Dragon Swordsman! He was unable to detect that you and the white swordsman named Fa Fei Sit had been hiding in the Phoenix Gardens! If he were the real Black Dragon Swordsman he would have been able to!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu. He was slightly puzzled by the events. Fung Lau Yin had already heard this part of the story before so had nothing further to add.

    “Eh! One cannot be certain! He seemed half mad and crazy! So maybe he knew we were hiding but didn’t care! Besides he had used the ‘divine 9 dragon’ stance to injure me! This move is the Black Dragon Swordsman’s most deadly move,! So no doubt about it! That was definitely him! Humph! And to think we were once friends!” rebutted Kiu Pin Fok whilst looking rather annoyed at being injured by whom he thought had been the real Black Dragon Swordsman.

    Many years ago the leader of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins, had put a large bounty on Yeung Tin Lung’s head, when he expelled himself from the clan to marry Lok Gum Fa. The leader of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins was afraid that Yeung Tin Lung might surrender to the orthodox clans and thus reveal all of the secrets of the clan. That would lead to their ultimate destruction. But Gwai Mo Ming, Kiu Pin Fok and the other elite fighters of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins, decided and agreed amongst themselves that they would leave the Black Dragon Swordsman alone and would not pursue after him. That was largely as a result of Kiu Pin Fok’s persuasion. That’s why there were no swordsmen, other than Kiu Pin Fok, from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins in Chongqing to try and capture Yeung Yin Lung over 20 years ago. So one could say that Kiu Pin Fok had done the Black Dragon Swordsman a great favour, and that’s why he was upset at the thought of being injured by the real Black Dragon Swordsman.

    “But did you see what he looked like?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu. In his mind this was a very important question, as it was quite possible for someone to dress themselves like the Black Dragon Swordsman. But the Black Dragon Swordsman according to the descriptions given to him by Fung Lau Yin had very distinct facial features.

    “No! It was too dark! I couldn’t see his face at all!”, replied Kiu Pin Fok whilst shaking his head.

    “Then we cannot be sure that it was my father who attacked you in Chongqing that night then! Firstly, this man appears to have lost his mind. He didn’t even recognise you! Also he wasn’t able to detect you hiding in the bushes. And you did not see his face either. Finally even though he knew the divine 9 dragon stance, that does not necessarily mean that it was the Black Dragon Swordsman! Perhaps there’s another explanation for all this!”, rebutted Yeung Yin Siu.

    Yeung Yin Siu had always held his father in the highest respects since childhood and had always imagined him to be a great hero. That was despite all of the stories that he had heard from others that stated otherwise. He merely blocked those stories from his mind. Kiu Pin Fok did not reply. He remained silent and deep in thought.

    “What are you going to do then?”, Fung Lau Yin finally decided to ask to break the dead silence. She had seen the determination written on Yeung Yin Siu’s face.

    “Auntie, I am going to first locate the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Art! I will then head to Chongqing and confront the Black Dragon Swordsman who attacked uncle myself!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Little Prince, are you out of your mind?”, Kiu Pin Fok couldn’t help but ask.

    “I have to know the truth! I want to get to the bottom of this!”, confidently replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Okay! If you insist! Brother Kiu and I will meet you at the White Horses Inn at Chongqing in two months time then! I would also like to see for myself whether this Black Dragon Swordsman is real or not!”, remarked Fung Lau Yin.

    “I’ll let bygones be bygones if he’s the real Black Dragon Swordsman! But I swear I’m going to skin him alive if he’s just an imposter!”, said Kiu Pin Fok whilst slamming a fist on the ground.

    Just at this moment two men wearing white robes with red trimmings walked towards them. One of the men were wearing blue bandanna on their heads, and the other a brown bandanna. It was none other than Blue Water and Brown Wood, two of the newly appointed 5 Guardians of the Demon Cult. It was said that Blue Water had a very unique style of inner energy and lightness kung fu that allowed him to walk on water. He was also a very good swimmer. Brown Wood on the other hand was an expert at camouflage and could blend himself against any background or landscape. He thus worked very effectively as a spy.

    Cupping their hands together the two men said, “Greetings! Which one of you is Fisherman Ho?”.

    “Greetings Blue Water and Brown Wood! I am Fisherman Ho! How can I assist you?”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst cupping his hands together to acknowledge the two men.

    “Oh so you’re Fisherman Ho! It’s nothing! The Chancellor was concerned about your injury and has asked that we prepare a small guest room for you so that you may rest before this evening’s celebrations!”, remarked Blue Water.

    “The room is now ready! So we’ve come to take you there! Are you ready?”, continued Brown Wood to the side as he stepped towards one end of the stretcher. Blue Water went and stood at the other end of the stretcher.

    “Why of course!”, gasped Yeung Yin Siu not really knowing what to say. He had now idea that Tit Yum Ching would to so much trouble over him on the same day that she was elected as the Chancellor of the Demon Cult.

    “Not fair! Not fair! I too am injured so how come now room has been prepared for me?”, protested Kiu Pin Fok as he laid on the ground.

    Casting a side glance at Kiu Pin Fok, and waving his hands over to two Demon Cult members, Blue Water replied, “Master Kiu, there are plenty of bunkers and beds outside in the Garden of Fate! I’ll arrange someone to have you taken over to one if you like!”.

    Moments later two Demon Cult members stood over Kiu Pin Fok and picked his stretcher off from the ground. They immediately headed towards the Garden of Fate. He could be heard protesting in the distance moments later, “Not fair! Not Fair! It’s not the same as resting in the luxury of the Chancellor’s guest room!”.

    “Eh! Brother Kiu, stop your complaining! At least you’re getting a free help to the Garden of Fate! Our little Fisherman Ho seems to have attracted the attention of the Chancellor it seems!”, interrupted Fung Lau Yin whilst casting a warm affection at Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Eh! Fisherman Ho! Just you be careful now! The more prettier the woman! The more devious they are!”, snickered Kiu Pin Fok whilst casting a glance back at Fung Lau Yin.

    “Why you…”, protested Fung Lau Yin upon hearing Kiu Pin Fok’s comments. But he was now some distance away and was not worth arguing with.

    Turning to Yeung Yin Siu, Fung Lau Yin said, “Fisherman Ho! Are you going to be okay?”.

    “Auntie, don’t worry about me! I feel fine! You need some rest! I’ll see you at the celebrations!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu casting a warm smile back at Fung Lau Yin.

    Picking up Yeung Yin Siu’s stretcher off the ground, Blue Water said, “Don’t worry about Fisherman Ho! The Chancellor has asked that we take good care of him and that we’ll do!”.

    Walking towards the secret passage behind the front of the great hall, they said, “Goodbye Ms Fung! We’ll see you at the celebrations!”.

    Cupping her hands together, Fung Lau Yin replied, “Goodbye!”. Moments later she disappeared from the great hall as she headed towards the Garden of Fate to join the others.

    By now Yeung Yin Siu began to feel very tired. His wounds were still hurting slightly. He closed his eyes before falling into a deep sleep. He had actually slepted through the beginning of the celebrations. There was a great feast of roast boar, roast pig, roast beef, fried rice, fresh clams, shark fin soup, and fresh oysters that he did not get to taste. There were endless barrels and different varieties of red wine, and beer that he did not get to drink. He had missed all of the laughter, chatter, story telling, and companionship in the great hall. There was great sparing, wrestling, and dancing that he did not get to participate in.

    Suddenly he could hear someone knocking at the door. He opened his eyes and realised that it was pitch dark. But he had now felt a little more refreshed. Clearing his voice, he asked in a low voice, “Who is it?”.

    But there was no response. He thought inwardly, “I wonder who’s at the door? Could it be auntie, Siu Wai, or Bak Tin Kiew coming to look for me?”.

    Moments later he could suddenly hear someone whisper from outside of the door, “Is he awake!”.

    “Yes!”, replied the voice.

    “Okay! Leave us! This is none of your business!”, continued the soft voice of a young lady from outside.

    Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this voice. He said, “Ah! So it’s none other than the Sacred Lady…”.

    “Actually, I should say Chancellor! Congratulations! And welcome! May I have the pleasure of knowing why you’re here?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu as he struggle to sit up on his bed.

    “Very clever! You must have remarkable ears!”, smiled Tit Yum Ching as she entered the room.

    Moments later she lit the small candle on the table to provide much needed light. One could see that she was now wearing a flowing yellow dress with red trimmings. A red veil with yellow trimmings covered the lower portion of her face. But one could tell that she had gentle and soothing eyes. She had a very pretty face. Her gaze was fixed at Yeung Yin Siu.

    “I was just concerned about your injury that’s all!”, continued Tit Yum Ching in a soft voice as she sat down on the table.

    “I’m fine now! Thanks for your concern!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he struggled to stand up before sitting himself down at the table.

    Moments later two maids walked into the room, carrying a large plate of fresh clams and oysters. The other maid carried a jug of red wine. Both of the maids left the room shortly afterwards.

    “Have some! These fresh clams and oysters will do your injury good!”, said Tit Yum Ching whilst pouring a glass of wine for herself and another for Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Of course!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. Picking a chopstick from the table, he feasted on some of the oysters and fresh clams. He was feeling rather hungry and was therefore glad that Tit Yum Ching had made all of the necessary preparations.

    After a while he drank a cup of red wine, raising his right thumb in the air, he remarked, “Great wine! It tastes really smooth! What is it?”.

    Smiling, Tit Yum Ching replied, “I’m glad you enjoyed it! This wine is actually brewed with the blood of wolves! It has very good healing properties and goes down well with seafood!”.

    “I see!” replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smile on his face.

    After a short while, Yeung Yin Siu couldn’t help but ask, “Won’t all of your guests outside in the great hall notice that you’re gone? You should be heading back!”.

    “Oh! Perhaps you’ve over looked something! Do you know what time it is?”, Tit Yum Ching decided to respond by asking another question.

    “No”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    A smile emerged from Tit Yum Ching’s face as she said, “It’s now 1.00am in the morning! Most of the people have gone to bed! I noticed you weren’t at the celebrations! So I’ve decided to come and see you personally!”.

    “Oh! You wanted to see me about something? Tell me what’s troubling on your mind?”, quizzed Yeung Yin Siu in a curious voice. He knew that a person of Tit Yum Ching’s stature would never meet him alone at such a late hour without some kind of ulterior motive.

    “It seems nothing ever gets under your guard!”, praised Tit Yum Ching upon realising that Yeung Yin Siu had guessed her intentions correctly.

    Pausing for a moment she continued, “Okay! I will be up front with you. There has been something that has been troubling on my mind for sometime now since father’s death!”.

    “What is it?”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He had no idea what was on Tit Yum Ching’s mind. He knew it must be related to the events earlier in the day.

    “How well do you know Gwai Mo Ming?”, quizzed Tit Yum Ching all of a sudden.

    “Personally! I don’t know him that well! But I heard that he is a man of true character and can be considered a great hero of the Demon Cult!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. This was indeed the truth. The annual general meeting of the Demon Cult was the first time they’ve actually met. But he has heard much about Gwai Mo Ming in the past from Fung Lau Yin and Kiu Pin Fok. He thus trusted and respected their judgement, that Gwai Mo Ming was a great hero at heart.

    “Why then did you vote and fight for him?”, quizzed Tit Yum Ching once more.

    “Because for one I respected him. I also believed in his abilities as a leader and his abilities to unify the Demon Cult!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    “At first I thought Gwai Mo Ming was a great hero and a man with good intentions as well! That’s why I would not have minded if he had won the elections and subsequently became the Chancellor!”, said Tit Yum Ching in a serious voice.

    Leaning forward slightly to make sure that no one would overhear their conversation she continued in a low voice, “To tell you the honest truth I would never have considered running for the leadership if I believed that Gwai Mo Ming or Miu Tit Sie would do a good job! Do you know why I ran for the elections?”.

    “No. Please tell me!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He was now very intrigued.

    “Four months ago, my scouts informed me that Gwai Mo Ming had met an unfortunate death at the hands of a masked swordsman on his visit to the South of China! So we were very surprised to hear that he was still alive and had decided to run for the leadership two months later!”, remarked Tit Yum Ching.

    “So what are you implying!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    “I believe my scouts and we have since recovered a body from the South of China that we believe to be the real Gwai Mo Ming! Thought the face of that body had been slashed beyond recognition, I am 100% certain that the current Gwai Mo Ming is nothing more than an imposter!”, concluded Tit Yum Ching.

    “Why are you so certain? Do you have any proof?”, Yeung Yin Siu couldn’t help but ask. If what Tit Yum Ching was saying was the truth, then it had great implications on the balance of power of wulin. He was also great troubled, at the thought of having fought alongside and nearly died for an imposter who may harbour ambitions of world domination.

    “Firstly, I know Gwai Mo Ming’s skills well! He fought alongside and has defended my father for many years. His skills are exceptional. His level of inner energy should be superior to that of Lightning! Yet today, you saw with your own eyes at the ease with which he was defeated in that final duel! Secondly no one knows who Gwai Mo Ming actually is. So it is very easy for someone to impersonate him!”, remarked Tit Yum Ching. Her face was full of concern and worry.

    “Finally I offered him the position of Deputy Chancellor! I personally know that someone with Gwai Mo Ming’s heroic character would certainly take up the position and assist me in unifying the Demon Cult! It is a very important position! Yet he refused! That leads me to think that he only had ulterior motives in becoming the leader! This is most unlike the Gwai Mo Ming I used to know!”, continued Tit Yum Ching.

    This was indeed very troubling. Yeung Yin Siu decided to say, “What you’ve said makes some sense! If the current Gwai Mo Ming is an imposter! Who? And more importantly which clan do you suspect he’s from?”.

    “Surely Brown Wood your top scout would have some leads for you!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu with a beaming smile.

    “I suspect that this imposter is somehow linked to the Divine Tiger Sect!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    “The Divine Tiger Sect? I’ve never heard of them before!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu with a shock expression on his face. He recalled the name of the Sect from his dream. But he had no idea of their origins or who they were.

    “The Divine Tiger Sect is a mysterious clan that is rumoured to have formed in the city of Fuzhou in the Fujian province over 5 years ago! They have just recently opened a second centre on Tiger Mountain in the Jianxi province recently!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    “Is that all that is known about this Divine Tiger Sect?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu with another question.

    “It is rumoured throughout wulin that they are somehow linked to Sabre Saint Unrivalled East! All of their swordsmen are said to be proficient in the arts of the unrivalled tiger sword arts! Furthermore their Chief is said to be named Feng! He is rumoured to have three personal apprentices. The first one is called Feng Sap Chut, his 25 year old son. The second apprentice is named Yik Lo Fu. The third apprentice is named Feng Sing Yau, his 20 year old son!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    “Feng Sap Chut! I’ve heard of this name before! But there’s little I know about him! But what else do you know about this Divine Tiger Clan?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu. He recognised the name from his dream. But had no idea what he looked like or even where he was based. But he had now become very interested.

    “The only other information I have about this clan is that they have many scouts throughout wulin, to spy on all of the members from all of the orthodox, unorthodox, and Demon Cult clans! Once they uncover a secret about a member of any of those clans, they use it to blackmail them to become spies for the Divine Tiger Sect!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    “So you suspect that the Demon Cult has been infuriated by the Divine Tiger Sect!”, asked Yeung Yin Siu.

    “That I am almost certain! But I don’t know who!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    “So you’ve decided to come and seek my assistance in uncovering those Demon Cult members who are linked to the Divine Tiger Sect!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu.

    “No, you’re totally mistaken! That’s not why I’m here! I already have the 5 Elements working on that issue!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    “The reason I’m here is to see your assistance in monitoring Gwai Mo Ming, members from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins and the 7 Vixens! I am aware that you are close friends with members of both clans! I am advised that they will be leaving the Demon Valley in the morning and that you are to travel with them! Once they leave here it would be very difficult for me to keep a watchful eye on them! Can you do this for me as a friend?”, asked Tit Yum Ching.

    Yeung Yin Siu suddenly smiled upon hearing the word ‘friend’. He now realise why Tit Yum Ching had visited earlier at the Golden Dragon Inn. He replied, “Of course! If what you’re saying is correct then we’ll need to keep a watchful eye on everyone who may have connections with the Divine Tiger Sect! Something tells me that they’re up to no good!”.

    “Excellent! I knew I could count on you!”, replied Tit Yum Ching raising a wine glass in the air before taking a sip.

    “It’s late! I must get going now!”, continued Tit Yum Ching as she suddenly stood up to leave. She had achieved her goal and thus wished to leave.

    “So soon?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu. A beaming grin crepted across his face.

    “Of course! I have to be up early in the morning to be sworn in as the Chancellor!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    “Then not so soon! I won’t be there for your ceremony tomorrow! So I’ll take this opportunity if you may, to toast you three times and congratulate you on obtaining the position of Chancellor!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu.

    Sitting back down on the table and pouring a glass of wine, Tit Yum Ching said, “Why of course!”.

    “Cheers!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he held a cup of wine before downing it.

    Tit Yum Ching and Yeung Yin Siu drank another two cups of wine. Tit Yum Ching stood up and left moments later to return to her room. Yeung Yin Siu pondered over what had been said before he finally decided to rest. It was around 5.00am in the morning when the skies were still black, when a pair of footsteps from outside suddenly awaked him.

    “Who is it?”, Yeung Yin Siu decided to ask in a low voice.

    “It’s only me! Tin Kiew! My master and your auntie has sent me here to wake you up! We’re leaving now!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew standing outside.

    “Okay! Okay! Just wait where you are! I’m be with you in a second!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he struggled to get out of the bed.

    Upon opening the door he was greeted with the bright and affectionate smile of Bak Tin Kiew. Now that they were leaving the Demon Valley, she had changed back into her usual flowing green dress. Though she was still wearing a white mask to cover the upper portion of her face.

    “Fisherman Ho! Good morning! And how are you?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew. Her voice was soft and carried an air of concern.

    “Good morning! I’m fine now! It doesn’t hurt as much as before! I should be able to walk today!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a slight grin. Though one could tell he was wincing a little in pain upon standing up.

    Yawning slightly, Yeung Yin Siu decided to ask, “I thought our plan was to leave around 6.30am to 7.00am in the morning. Why the sudden change?”.

    “You missed the celebrations and have been sleeping all night! So obviously you don’t know! Gwai Mo Ming and the Black Bat Assassin had a heated exchange last night shortly after the celebrations. I had come to get you, but Blue Water said that no one was allowed to disturb you!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew. Her face was full of concern.

    Yeung Yin Siu was shocked upon hearing of the recent events. He remembered what Tit Yum Ching had said to him in the previous evening. So he couldn’t help but say, “Eh! Tin Kiew, don’t stop there tell me what happened! What was it all about?”.

    “The Black Bat Assassin, as always was just speaking what was on his mind! As you may well know he is a little abrasive and up front sometimes! He had been protesting all night long about how Gwai Mo Ming had sent his elite fighters to convince him to come to the Demon Valley and how in the end it was all for nothing! Gwai Mo Ming was very upset by those comments and started having a go at the Black Bat Assassin! Your auntie and my master joined in also! They had blamed him for not taking up the position of Deputy Chancellor! So he got up and left in a hurray!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew.

    “So what? I don’t understand?”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a blank face.

    “No one has seen Gwai Mo Ming since that time! The Black Phoenix Assassin has also gone missing!”, continued Bak Tin Kiew.

    Many thoughts were now flashing through Yeung Yin Siu’s mind. He said, “Perhaps the Black Phoenix Assassin have gone to search for Gwai Mo Ming!”.

    “That’s why we’re leaving now! Master hopes to catch up with them before they leave the Golden Dragon Inn! Everyone’s waiting for us!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew as she walked to the side of Yeung Yin Siu, and placed his arms over her shoulders to support him as they walked down the corridor.

    They reached the great hall were everyone had been waiting in around 10 minutes time. There were around 60 people standing around the great hall at this moment. All of them carried a small travelling bag over their shoulders. Amongst them were, Fung Mun Kit, Fung Lau Yin, Fung Lau Sit, Siu Wah, Siu Wai, Kiu Pin Fok and the rest of the elite fighters and members from both he 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins and the 7 Vixens. By now Kiu Pin Fok had almost recovered from his injuries and was standing in an upright position, holding onto a small staff to support himself as he walked.

    “Okay! Let’s go! If we hurry we may still be able to catch up with Gwai Mo Ming at the Golden Dragon Inn”, shouted Fung Lau Yin waving a hand in the air upon seeing that Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew had arrived.

    The group of 60 fighters walked out of the great hall of the Demon Cult down the soul crushing passage, and then proceeded down the passage of lost souls. The Night Owl and Red Flame had been there to see them off and ensure them a safe passage out of the Demon Valley. They then boarded the tiny little green bamboo rafts and made there way back across the red lake before heading up towards the mountain slopes behind Hennan. The reached the base of the Demon Valley leading towards the mountain ranges in around 30 minutes time.

    They were about to walk up the slopes when the Black Scorpion Assassin, cried out in a booming voice, “Everyone stop! Stand on alert! There’s something ahead! It appears to be a deceased body!”.

    Fung Mun Kit and Fung Lau Yin walked towards the front of the group to join the Black Scorpion Assassin. Waving a small torch over the two deceased bodies, Fung Lau Yin could suddenly be heard gasping out aloud, “It’s the Black Phoenix Assassin!”.

    “How did she die?”, the Black Scorpion Assassin could suddenly be heard asking in total disbelief.

    “It appears as if she had been slained by the tip of a small fencing sword! Look here!”, replied Fung Min Kit pointing to the wound marks on the neck.

    “What did you say?”, cried Bak Tin Kiew as she suddenly raced up to inspect the wounds on the deceased body of the Black Phoenix Assassin.

    Siu Wai walked over to support Yeung Yin Siu so that he too could walk up to the front to inspect the bodies. As he approached he heard Fung Mun Kit asking, Bak Tin Kiew “Eh! Little apprentice, have you seen these types of wounds before!”.

    “Yes! I’ve seen this kind of wound before! But the skill of the swordsman didn’t appear to be as refined as this!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew. Though her face turned a little pale upon seeing the stab wounds on the necks of the Black Phoenix Assassin, her eyes appeared to be hot with rage.

    “I’ve seen these marks as well on my travels to the South of China!”, interrupted Siu Wai to the side.

    Casting a quick glance along the slopes of the Mountain ranges above them, she continued, “It’s the work of the Unrivalled Tiger Swordsmen from Fuzhou!”.

    “The what swordsmen?”, asked the Black Scorpion Assassin.

    But before Siu Wai had a chance to respond, over 120 men wearing black robes, and black masks appeared on either side of the mountain ranges. A blanket of arrows suddenly flew towards the group of 60 swordsmen from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins, and the 7 Vixens. They were severely outnumbered. Shrieks and loud cries echoed through the valley as many of the moderate to lower level fighters amongst the group, were struck down by the arrows and died instantly.

    “It’s an ambush! Let’s charge out of here!”, shouted the Black Scorpion Assassin as he leaped up onto the mountain slopes and brought down 5 masked men with his long black spear.

    “Agreed!”, cried Fung Mun Kit, Fung Lau Yin, Fung Lau Sit, Siu Wah, the Black Bull Assassin, Black Panther, and the Black Bear Assassin simultaneously, as they charged up onto the sides of the mountain slopes to deal with the masked men as well. Loud shrieks and cries continued to echo through the valley. The battle had now become intense.

    A blanket of arrows continued to rain down on the many fighters who stayed down at ground level on the valley. Amongst this group were Kiu Pin Fok, Yeung Yin Siu, Bak Tin Kiew, Siu Wai, and the Black Eagle Assassin. They were all frantically ducking, dodging, and weaving to get out of the way of the arrows. Moments later many of the fighters around them had fallen dead upon being struck by the arrows. Over 20 fighters had been now been slained in the short space of time.

    “What are we waiting for? Quickly lets get ourselves up along the slope! Otherwise we have no chance of surviving”, shouted Kiu Pin Fok as he frantically waved his walking staff, left and right to defend against the sea of arrows flying towards them.

    The Black Eagle Assassin remained at ground level, twisting left and right, to avoid the arrows fired directly at him. He returned those arrows with a flurry of six at a time from his black eagle bow. He killed a number of masked men lined up along both sides of the slope.

    Seeing that there were still a number of fighters who had stayed at ground level, the Black Eagle Assassin remained behind to provide the ground cover. He had intended to leap up along the slopes himself, but suddenly decided against it. The Black Eagle Assassin was often known as the ‘Arrow Saint’. So each of the arrows he shot from his bow, hit the mark and brought down one of the masked men along the slopes. Shooting 12 arrows at a time at a frantic pace, he shouted, “Do you all want me to die? What are you waiting for? Get up onto the slopes now, and I’ll try my best to cover the whole lot of you!”.

    Another 10 shrieks could be heard at ground level as another 10 swordsmen from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins and the 7 Vixens, slumped to the ground and died, upon being struck by arrows. Wasting no more time Siu Wai immediately grabbed Kiu Pin Fok by the arm and leaped up onto the slope. She shouted, “Fisherman Ho! I’ve got your uncle! He’s safe with me! You take care!”.

    “Great!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself as he was also frantically dodging and twisting to avoid being struck by the arrows. He felt a sharp pain building up from his right stomach region. It hurt so badly that he could not utilise his lightness kung fu.

    By now a red, white, and blue blur could now been seen on both sides of the mountain slope along with a number of black shadows, reeking havoc on the masked men who ambushed them.

    Yeung Yin Siu suddenly felt someone had crepted under his shoulders to support him. He looked down and noticed that it was Bak Tin Kiew. Moments later she attempted to utilise her divine butterfly lightness kung fu to leap up onto the side of the right slope. A number of swooshing sounds could be heard as around 16 arrows were fired towards them as they leaped in the air. Yeung Yin Siu tried as best as he could to twist to the side so that he could defend against the arrows fired directly at them. But he knew that his efforts were likely to be in vain.

    Seeing the urgent situation emerging before his eyes, the Black Eagle Assassin, abandoned his stances of defence and turned his attention on Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew. He fired 12 arrows into the air, aimed for the 16 arrows attacking towards them. A loud and continuous ‘cling’ echoed through the air as the 12 arrows met with 12 of the arrows fired towards Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew before diverting them in another direction.

    “Ah Ya!”, the Black Eagle Assassin could be heard moments later as he was strucked down by a sea of arrows and died instantly. He had sacrificed his life to save Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew.

    Yeung Yin Siu was now able to block 3 of the remaining for arrows that attacked towards them. But he could not reach the fourth and last arrow striking towards Bak Tin Kiew’s right shoulder.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried Bak Tin Kiew as she had been pierced through the right shoulder. Blood started to gush freely form her wounds, as she felt a sharp pain going down her right arm.

    Bak Tin Kiew almost dropped the butterfly sword from her grasp, but gritted her teeth and held on. She also held tightly onto Yeung Yin Siu with her left arm, but could now feel herself descending towards the ground. She no longer had the strength to continue leaping upwards onto the slope.

    Noticing that Bak Tin Kiew’s body had suddenly become weak, and realising that they were now falling back towards the valley, Yeung Yin Siu channelled his inner energy. But he suddenly felt a sharp pain from his right stomach region and he nearly passed out as a result.

    Moments later a loud ‘thud’ echoed through the valley as both Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu crashed landed into a small cave at the side of the valley. They had virtually disappeared from visible sight. Both Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew passed out upon landing on the ground.

    Frantic cries of, “Fisherman Ho!”, and “Little apprentice!”, could be heard through the valley above the loud shrieks and the clashing of the swords along both slopes of the of the mountain. The heated battle for survival for those still alive had only begun.

    End of Chapter 11.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

  5. #45
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    You certainly create vivid and memorable characters.
    HK47: Now do you understand the travails of my existence master? Surely it does not compare to your existence but still...
    You: I survive somehow
    HK47: As do I. It is our lot in life I suppose master. Shall we find something to kill to cheer ourselves up?

    -KotOR

  6. #46
    Senior Member douggilmour's Avatar
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    great chapter, that twist with imposter was unexpected.
    just like to point out some little grammar mistakes for ur revision:
    1)It’s obvious that the battle for the Chancellor of the Demon Cult was just hotting up. --->heating?
    2) “So you suspect that the Demon Cult has been infuriated by the Divine Tiger Sect!”, asked Yeung Yin Siu.
    infuriated--->infiltrated
    and some spelling error that a spellcheck can solve.

    Also, there were some parts in the fights scenes in which i couldn't stop laughing...its like ,"oh he got stabbed in the stomach and blood is gushing out, but hey, nothing serious, " ....LoL , i laugh at the stupidest things.

  7. #47
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    I think he is filtering it through a spell checker. That's why you see close and sound-a-like variations as opposed to actual mis-spellings. Maybe it's set on auto-correct or something.

    Originally posted by douggilmour
    great chapter, that twist with imposter was unexpected.
    just like to point out some little grammar mistakes for ur revision:
    1)It’s obvious that the battle for the Chancellor of the Demon Cult was just hotting up. --->heating?
    2) “So you suspect that the Demon Cult has been infuriated by the Divine Tiger Sect!”, asked Yeung Yin Siu.
    infuriated--->infiltrated
    and some spelling error that a spellcheck can solve.

    Also, there were some parts in the fights scenes in which i couldn't stop laughing...its like ,"oh he got stabbed in the stomach and blood is gushing out, but hey, nothing serious, " ....LoL , i laugh at the stupidest things.
    HK47: Now do you understand the travails of my existence master? Surely it does not compare to your existence but still...
    You: I survive somehow
    HK47: As do I. It is our lot in life I suppose master. Shall we find something to kill to cheer ourselves up?

    -KotOR

  8. #48
    Senior Member Long's Avatar
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    Originally posted by douggilmour
    great chapter, that twist with imposter was unexpected.
    just like to point out some little grammar mistakes for ur revision:
    1)It’s obvious that the battle for the Chancellor of the Demon Cult was just hotting up. --->heating?
    2) “So you suspect that the Demon Cult has been infuriated by the Divine Tiger Sect!”, asked Yeung Yin Siu.
    infuriated--->infiltrated
    and some spelling error that a spellcheck can solve.

    Also, there were some parts in the fights scenes in which i couldn't stop laughing...its like ,"oh he got stabbed in the stomach and blood is gushing out, but hey, nothing serious, " ....LoL , i laugh at the stupidest things.
    Yes thanks for pointing that out. Once I have finished the entire story, I will be doing a comprehensive edit for the second draft, to flush out the story. Extend parts that I thought was too short and cut parts I thought was too long. Make consistent the things that are currently inconsistent. As part of this process I will be looking at spelling errors, grammer, and typos. I have been using a dodgy spell checker.

    Now that you mention it - the way I have written the battle between Fung Mun Kit and Thunder at the end did make me laugh a little as well. I have to admit that I had a bit of a creative blank whilst writing up Chapter 11.

    Thanks for reading the story by the way.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

  9. #49
    Senior Member HookOnRice's Avatar
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    I am one of your silence reader. Just want to drop a line and said what a great story you are writing. Keep up the great work. For i can't wait and have constantly checking for new update.

  10. #50
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    Default Chapter 12: A Time for Healing

    Chapter 12: A Time For Healing

    It is dead silent except for the sounds of dripping water and two small rocks banging together echoing back in forth in the darkness. From the tiny flashes of light created through the sparks one could see that it was a handsome young man in torn and weathered black robes frantically trying to light a small fire. A pile of dried leaves and sticks were laying on the floor. Moments later the sparks ignited the dry leaves and a small fire is lit, providing much needed light in the dark cave. From the small fire, one could now see that the handsome young man in black robes was indeed none other than Yeung Yin Siu. He had just awoken from his daze after crash landing into the cave. His face was bleeding slightly as a result of receiving minor cuts and grazes from the lose debry covering the entrance of the cave. Bak Tin Kiew was laying unconscious by the fire. The arrow that had struck her in the right shoulder had been dislodged during the fall. Her flowing green dress has been stained with blood and the lower portion of her uncovered face was covered with various cuts and minor bruises. It was lucky that both he and Bak Tin Kiew had landed in a large pool of water in the cave. Otherwise they had both died upon hitting the ground.

    Looking directly above his head Yeung Yin Siu could see a small ray of light shining from above the opening of the cave. He estimated that they had fallen around 200 metres below the ground. The walls of the cave were moist and covered in fungus. Water was tricking down along the wall to the pool of water below, making it very difficult to climb up along the wall. He knew that both he and Bak Tin Kiew were seriously injured and thus could not fully utilise their lightness kung fu or inner energy to climb up the walls of the cave in any case. He gave a long sigh upon realising that they were going to be stuck down the dark cave for a long while to come.

    “She’s badly wounded!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu as he turned his attention and stared at Bak Tin Kiew’s face for the first time after removing the mask. It was slightly pale from losing too much blood. He noticed that blood was still gushing freely from the right shoulder region as a result of the arrowhead being dislodged from the fall. Wasting no time, Yeung Yin Siu, decided to seal all of the pressure points around the wounded areas to stop the bleeding.

    Looking around the cave, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that Bak Tin Kiew’s travelling bag had fallen into the pool of water. Her butterfly sword had fallen out of her grasp and landed on the ground besides the fire. Yeung Yin Siu noticed that his own travelling bag had been dislodged during the fall and landed on the ground near where he was currently resting. All of the contents in his bag were still dry. Diving back into the pool he retrieved Bak Tin Kiew’s travelling bag. It was soaking wet. He decided to open the bag before laying all of the contents out to dry by the fire. He found a golden hairpin in the shape of a butterfly, and a long jade bamboo flute, along with a number of silk dresses in the bag. He placed them near a large rock by the small fire to dry. He also managed to find a small bag of medical herbs.

    “I must save her!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself upon seeing the deep slash across Bak Tin Kiew’s left wrist. He now realised from these wounds that it was none other than Bak Tin Kiew who had donated blood to him when he was in a critical position after the duel with Cloud.

    “She’s burning hot!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu out loud once more upon placing a hand over Bak Tin Kiew’s forehead. This indicated that she was getting a slight fever. Sweat was forming on her forehead. Her flowing green dress had also been soaked in water. Sleeping in wet clothes would only increase the chances of getting sick.

    Yeung Yin Siu had a sudden thought as he immediately opened his own travelling bag to take out a black cape before laying it out along the ground. Moments later he propped Bak Tin Kiew up onto a meditating position and started to undress her to remove the wet clothes. After taking off the flowing green dress, he noticed that Bak Tin Kiew was wearing a white undergarment. Being a gentleman, Yeung Yin Siu hesitated for a long while before deciding to proceed any further. He smelt the fragrant scent of rose perfume and was now clutching onto the soft body of a virgin girl. He could fell his heart starting to beat rapidly. It was pounding so fast that it almost seemed as if the sound of his heart pounding was echoing loudly through the dark cave. Looking at the pale but pretty face of Bak Tin Kiew once more, Yeung Yin Siu, had his first awakening of love. He could now feel blood rushing up to his face making him feel all hot. He felt slightly embarrassed and turned his head away for a moment to regain his composure. But for some reason he could not stop his heart from rapidly beating like a drum.

    Plucking enough courage, Yeung Yin Siu decided to remove the white undergarment revealing a pink brassiere that had been stained in blood. He could now see the deep scar on Bak Tin Kiew’s right shoulder. It was the exact spot where the arrow had struck her. He relaxed a little and became calmer upon noticing that the blood that had flowed from that region was red. It was an indication that the arrowhead had not been poisoned. Shifting his glance across from the right shoulder to chest, Yeung Yin Siu suddenly noticed the soft and elegant curves on Bak Tin Kiew’s body. To him they appeared to be shaped like two large porcelain rice bowls. Its shape was very different to the chest of a man. Though he became very curious he dared not touch them. Deciding to shut both of his eyes, Yeung Yin Siu reached around to the back of the brassiere before untying and removing it. Bak Tin Kiew was totally naked now, and her soft body glowed underneath the small fire. Keeping his eyes closed, Yeung Yin Siu laid Bak Tin Kiew down onto the black cape on the floor. Reaching blindly across to find his travelling bag, Yeung Yin Siu decided to take out one of his dry brown robes to cover Bak Tin Kiew’s naked body with it. He managed to accidentally touch Bak Tin Kiew’s body once or twice when trying to cover up her body with the brown robe. He noticed that her body was very warm, soft, and smooth.

    Opening his eyes again, Yeung Yin Siu, decided to take Bak Tin Kiew’s green dress, white undergarment, and pink brassiere to wash it by the pool of water to remove the bloodstains. He finished in around 5 minutes time, before returning and placing the wet cloths on a nearby rock to dry by the fire. Reaching into his travelling bag once more, Yeung Yin Siu took out a small black silk cloth. He wandered over to the pool of water to wet it before returning to the side of Bak Tin Kiew’s body. He started to wipe Bak Tin Kiew’s face with the silk cloth, to remove the dirt, sweat, and blood from her pretty young face and neck. Yeung Yin Siu then uncovered the brown robe covering Bak Tin Kiew’s naked body to the shoulder bone region before starting to wipe away the blood from around the wound. But he dared go no further. He felt that it would be inappropriate to lower the brown robes below the shoulders. Taking the small bag of medical herbs from Bak Tin Kiew’s bag, Yeung Yin Siu began placing them into his mouth and chewed them slowly before applying the herbs on the deep wound on Bak Tin Kiew’s right shoulder. He finished applying the medical herbs to Bak Tin Kiew’s right shoulder in around 10 minutes time.

    Though Bak Tin Kiew was still laying unconscious on the floor her breathing had remained steady throughout that time. A sign that she was okay and would soon recover after a little rest. Yeung Yin Siu felt a little relieved upon seeing this. He sat in the darkness away from the fire for a while to observe the pretty face of Bak Tin Kiew glowing in the fire. A slight smile appeared in his face as various memories flashed through his mind. He remembered how he had behaved like a rogue when they had first met. He also remembered the fierce and annoyed look on Bak Tin Kiew’s face when she drew her sword and pointed it towards his adam’s apple pressure point after he had insulted her. He also remembered that it was the same tiny little girl, who had creped under his shoulders in an attempt to leaped up to the slope of the mountains. She had risked her own life to save him. He suddenly felt a warm tinge in his heart as a little teardrop rolled down his eyes.

    Moments later, another thought flashed through Yeung Yin Siu’s mind as he picked up a long stick from the ground. Tearing a small piece of black cloth from his robes, he wrapped it around the stick before placing it in the fire to use it as a torch. He now had an urge to wander around and check the surroundings. Most importantly he wanted to know if there was another way they could leave the cave. Waving the torch over the large pool of water to the side, Yeung Yin Siu noticed that there were a number of unusual white fish swimming in the water. He began to relax a little upon realising that they had something to eat and would not die of starvation.

    Walking around the cave, Yeung Yin Siu suddenly noticed a small stone table and two stone seats carved to the side of the cave.

    “Obviously someone has lived in this cave before!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself as he continued walking through the cave.

    Turning to his left, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that there was something red glowing in the darkness. He walked forward for a closer look. There was a secret small room carved into the side of the rock wall. The door was slightly ajar and the glowing red light appeared to be emitted from inside. Pushing the door wide open, Yeung Yin Siu walked into the room. Suddenly he could hear two swooshing sounds through the air. It was a sign that two projectiles had been launched in the air. Yeung Yin Siu ducked his head and twisted to the right side of the door. The two projectiles narrowly missed him and two ‘cling’ sounds echoed through the air shortly afterwards as they collided into the opposite wall of the cave. It was obvious that various traps guarded the room.

    Waving the torch left and right, Yeung Yin Siu could now see that a long broad sword had been struck into the centre of the stone table in the middle of the room. But this was no ordinary sword. It glowed in the dark and light up the room with a reddish light. A circle of warm heat was being emitted from the sword. He walked over to the table and tried to pull out the sword. But he could not move it an inch. It was obvious that the elite fighter who had struck the sword in the table had not intended for it to be pulled from the table so easily. A small stone bed had been carved into the side of the wall to the left of the room.

    Yeung Yin Siu walked up to the bed and noticed there were two human skeletons resting on the bed. A torn and dusty red robe with white trimmings was wrapped around the skeleton closest to him. A large white circle and a red-half crescent moon was embroided on the top right-hand corner of the robes. A torn red headband with a white circle and a red half-crescent moon was wrapped around the head. The other skeleton resting on the bed appeared to be that of a female. A black dress was wrapped around the skeleton. A black belt with a red at its centre was wrapped around the waist of the skeleton. From the texture of the two skeletons, it appeared as if the male had died sometime before the female.

    “Who are these two people? How did they come to be in this place? Why did they die here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself.

    Yeung Yin Siu was about to leave the room when he noticed some words had been carved into the right wall. He immediately went to the side and read the words out aloud to himself.

    From the ashes of poverty,
    Rose a hero of great novelty,
    A fierce warrior and yet kind at heart,
    The great revolution he did start,

    For once wulin stood divided,
    But under this great hero they united,
    To fight for the freedom of the nation,
    Driving the Mongol Empire to total destruction,

    The price of peace was paid with treason,
    Betrayed by a friend without reason,
    Condemned to an eternity in hell,
    For his story one could never tell.

    In memory of Yeung Kai Seng by Tit Miu Lan.

    “Yeung Kai Seng! So this was one of the rebel leaders of the revolution against the Mongol Yuan Dynasty! He’s also the first ever person in the history of wulin to be able to unite all of the martial arts clans and rally everyone together for a common purpose! A great hero indeed!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself. Moments later he dropped to his knees and bowed three times to show his respects.

    “Ah! So this must be none other than Tit Yum Ching’s great ancestor, Tit Miu Lan! So that red sword on the table is the Iron Blood Sword!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself as he glanced back at the second skeleton resting on the bed. It is well known that the Tit family bloodline has ruled the Demon Cult throughout the generations. Though Tit Yum Ching is now the last of that bloodline. Tit Miu Lan was a renowned fighter during her generation. She possessed advance skills in the iron blood sword arts and the iron blood palms. Both of which have now been lost through the generations.

    Yeung Yin Siu recalled that he had previously heard about the story of Yeung Kai Seng from his uncle and auntie. According to Kiu Pin Fok, the Divine Red Moon Sect was originally an orthodox clan and not part of the Demon Cult. It was founded by a man named, Yeung Yau Tan, who was actually a disciple of Shaolin, during the last 10 years of the Song Dynasty. Yeung Yau Tan wished to defend the country against the Mongol invasion. But his efforts were in vain. Yeung Kai Seng was named as the 16th Chief of the Divine Red Moon Sect in 1358 AD and the Chancellor of Wulin in 1362 AD. In order to fulfil the ambitions of his great ancestor, and in order to drive out the Mongols from China, he was said to have taken an oath of brotherhood with Chu Yin Cheung, Chief of the Ming Cult, and Chancellor of all of the unorthodox clans.

    The combined forces of Yeung Kai Seng and Chu Yin Cheung were great but they could not overcome the forces of the Mongol armies. In 1364, Yeung Kai Seng was said to have secretly met with Tit Kiu Sam the Chancellor of the Demon Cult in order to propose an alliance. Tit Kiu Sam was said to have accepted the alliance after Yeung Kai Seng had married his younger sister Tit Miu Lan. Subsequently Yeung Kai Seng decided to merged the Divine Red Moon Sect with the Demon Cult in a demonstration of trust. Following four years of bloody wars the combined forces of the orthodox clans, unorthodox clans and the Demon Cult managed to drive the Mongols out of China and capture the capital in 1368 AD. Having achieved his lifetime ambition, Yeung Kai Seng, decided to retire from wulin to live a peaceful life with his wife Tit Miu Lan. Subsequently Chu Yin Cheung, Chief of the Ming Cult, became the Emperor of China. Members of the Ming Cult became Ming Government officials.

    The Chancellor of the Demon Cult, Tit Kiu Sam was offered the position as the Prime Minister of China. But he declined the offer and refused to accept a Government post. Chu Yin Cheung misread the intentions of Tit Kiu Sam, and thought he had harboured ambitions of becoming the Emperor himself. Tit Kiu Sam was then invited to a secret meeting where he was ambushed and brutally murdered. But Chu Yin Cheung did not stop there he then accused Tit Kiu Sam of committing treachery against the Ming Government. Members of his clan were then declared as outlaws and the land owned by Demon Cult members was declared to be crown land. This lead to years of bloody wars between the Ming Government and the Demon Cult as Chu Yin Cheung sought to decimate them. He feared that the power of the Demon Cult was strong enough to overthrow his rule as the Emperor of China. Yeung Kai Seng was said to have come out of retirement upon hearing of Chu Yin Cheung’s treachery. He left his wife in Hennan and set out to murder Chu Yin Cheung to avenge the death of Tit Kiu Sam. But he fell for an ambush, was poisoned, and subsequently captured. Tit Miu Lan arrived to save him on the day of his execution, but they were hotly pursued by elite Ming Cult fighters on their way back to the Demon Valley. But no one in wulin had heard about them since. It was said that the Demon Cult kept the red half-crescent moon as their insignia in memory of the deeds of Yeung Kai Seng.

    Looking directly below the writing on the right wall, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed there were a number of drawings depicting various kung fu palm stances.

    “The Iron Blood Palms and Iron Blood inner energy!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu out loud upon reading the words carved below the various drawings on the wall.

    Suddenly Yeung Yin Siu noticed another set of unique drawings depicting various swords stances on the opposite wall. He read the words out loud to himself once more, “The Iron Blood Sword Arts!”.

    Next to the drawings depicting the swords stances, Yeung Yin Siu noticed further words and drawings had been carved into the wall. He read them out loud, “Essence Dissolving Art and the Divine Red Moon Sword Arts!”.

    “So these are the renowned arts of these two elite fighters who died here! Obviously they have carved these drawings in the wall in the hope that their martial arts skills are not lost to the world. But what use are these to us? If we don’t figure of a way to leave this cave, we’re going to die, as they did, here anyway!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself as he exited the room.

    He wandered around the entire cave. Apart from a few vines with unique berries, he but did not find anything else that could help them. It appeared as if there was no other way out of the cave apart from above. Picking a handful the small purple berries from the vines and placing them in his pockets, Yeung Yin Siu, decided to wander back towards the small fire. By now the dried leaves and branches had almost burnt out. There was only a reddish glow amongst the black ashes. Walking around the cave, Yeung Yin Siu, picked up a couple of large tree branches before throwing on top of the small fire. The cave lit up once more with bright light. Looking around he noticed he had plenty of dry debry to use as fuel for stoking the fire for a long while. White smoke was rising from the wet clothes placed over the rock to dry. Smoke was also rising from Yeung Yin Siu’s robes as he sat by the fire.

    Looking up above at the bright light, Yeung Yin Siu though to himself, “Surely someone will notice the smoke rising above the cave sooner or later and come to rescue us!”.

    But hope soon faded before his eyes as he watched the white smoke seemingly being absorbed by the vines, fungus, and plants along the walls of the cave. None of the white smoke could escape to the top. Thus no one would ever suspect that two people had fallen down the cave. Yeung Yin Siu slammed his fist on the ground upon this realisation. Glancing back towards the fire he noticed that Bak Tin Kiew was still laying unconscious on the floor. Other than the crackling of the fire and the dripping of the water it was dead quite in the cave. He gave a long sigh before picking up a very long and thin branch off the dirt floor. Taking a hook, a small coin to use as a sinker, and a piece of string from his pockets he soon assembled a simple fishing rod. He used a purple berry as bait before placing it in the water to try and catch one of the unusual white fish for lunch. He sat by the edge of the pool with both of his feet dangling in the water. He hummed a mellow tune that echoed in the cave.

    “Ah! Ha!”, cried Yeung Yin Siu out loud in around 10 minutes time as pulled the fishing rod from the water. He had just landed his first catch of the day. One could now see there was a rather large fish around 30cm in length dangling at the end of the line. It was wriggling wildly in an attempt to escape.

    Wasting no time, Yeung Yin Siu leaped up onto his feet before reaching into his travelling bag to take out a small knife. He immediately cut off the head of the fish before placing it onto a large green leaf on the floor next to him. Placing the small knife in his pockets, and baiting the line with a purple berry, he casted it in the water once more and waited. He hummed another mellow tune as he sat in the darkness. His spirits suddenly picked up as he was feeling quite proud of himself at the moment. Around 30 minutes, he managed to catch another three medium sized fish. Deciding that four fish was more than enough lunch for two people, Yeung Yin Siu, placed his self-made fishing rod against a rock. He began gutting, scaling, and preparing each of the fish that laid out on the floor. Moments later he skewed the large one with a long thin stick before placing over the small fire to fry. He sat on a large rock around the fire so he could keep a watchful eye on Bak Tin Kiew as he was cooking.

    Moments later a smile flashed across his face. It appeared as if Bak Tin Kiew was coming around upon smelling the delicious aroma of fried fish. She was now twisting left and turning right whilst groaning slightly in pain.

    “I promise! I promise!”, screamed Bak Tin Kiew at the top of her lungs. Her voiced echoed back and forth through the cave.

    Yeung Yin Siu was startled by the scream and nearly dropped the fish he was frying into the fire. But he managed to catch it before it slipped out of his grasp. Placing the half-cooked fish back on the big green leaf on the floor, Yeung Yin Siu kneeled down besides Bak Tin Kiew. He could now tell that Bak Tin Kiew was still in a daze. She seemed a little confused. She appeared to be talking in her sleep, but a lot of the sentences were broken up and did not make sense. Sweat was forming on her forehead as she turned her head from left to right. It was obvious that she was having some kind of nightmare.

    “Shh! Don’t worry! Big brother Yeung is here!”, taking Bak Tin Kiew’s hands into his own and whispering softly into Bak Tin Kiew’s ears said Yeung Yin Siu. His voice carried with it an air of affection.

    “Noooooo!”, cried Bak Tin Kiew trying to release her hand from Yeung Yin Siu’s grasp. Her hands were shaking uncontrollably. It was obvious that she was still in a daze and did not know what she was doing.

    “It’s okay! I’m here! I’ll protect you!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu as he whispered in Bak Tin Kiew’s ears once more. He had wanted to calm her down. But he meant what he said.

    “I’ll remember! I’ll remember!”, cried Bak Tin Kiew out loud once more. This time Bak Tin Kiew held tightly onto Yeung Yin Siu’s hands.

    “Nooooooo!”, cried Bak Tin Kiew moments later. She suddenly opened her eyes before suddenly sitting straight up right. Yeung Yin Siu suddenly turned his head away.

    No long after Bak Tin Kiew suddenly felt cold air brushing against her back and across her shoulders. She looked down and gasped in horror. She suddenly realised that she was totally naked. The brown robe that had covered her body and slipped down to her waist revealing her chest when she had sat in an upright position.

    “What the heck!”, cried Bak Tin Kiew as she frantically pulled the brown robe up to cover her chest. Though she was still feeling slightly weary and weak, she was now fully aware of what was happening around her.

    Looking around she noticed that her pink brassiere, white undergarment, flowing green dress, and all of the other silk dresses were scattered by a large rock to dry by the fire.

    “Why you little pervert! I’m going to…”, cursed Bak Tin Kiew with a hand raised in the air before stopping short upon noticing that Yeung Yin Siu had been sitting to the side of her all this time.

    Bak Tin Kiew was going to slap Yeung Yin Siu square in the face for undressing her. But she pulled back upon noticing that he had turned his head away. This was an act of a true gentleman and not a pervert. Though Bak Tin Kiew was still slightly suspicious at why she was now laying on the floor stark naked, she gave Yeung Yin Siu the benefit of doubt. As the emotions of anger subsided it gave way to shyness. Blood suddenly raced up to her face making her feel at hot. The complexion of her skin was now as red as a cherry. Indicating that she was slightly embarrassed. Turning her head away she remained silent and did not say a word.

    “Eh! Little girl, if I wanted to perve on you! Why would I cover you up with my brown robes? I could have just left you laying naked by the fire!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu in a cheeky voice to break the silence. He was still sitting with his back facing towards Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Stop calling me little girl! I’ not young any more!”, protested Bak Tin Kiew. Emotions of anger stirred in her heart taking away her shyness.

    “Of course! Sorry Tin Kiew!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a slight smirk. He was going to continue by saying, “Also little girls don’t have curves like yours!”, upon remembering the elegant and soft curves on Bak Tin Kiew’s slim and compact body when he was undressing her. But he decided that would be too cheeky and not a very appropriate thing to say to a young lady.

    “Why… Why… Why did you undress me?”, Bak Tin Kiew finally managed to bring herself to ask as shyness overcame her again. She was still slightly suspicious and wanted to hear the truth directly from Yeung Yin Siu’s mouth.

    Clearing his voice, Yeung Yin Siu responded whilst pointing an index finger towards the lake, “We landed in the pool of water over there! I don’t know how long we were both unconscious upon landing in the pool of water. But when I came to you were still passed out and looked like you were getting a slight fever! So I thought it would be best if you didn’t sleep in those wet clothes of yours! It was for your own good!”.

    “Really? Then why didn’t you dress me in some dry clothes? Why did you leave me like this for?”, continued Bak Tin Kiew in a shy voice.

    “You didn’t have any dry clothes! Your travelling bag also fell in the pool of water along with you! I had to lay the rest of them out to dry as well!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst motioning his finger to the big rock by the fire.

    Bak Tin Kiew could tell that Yeung Yin Siu had been telling her the truth. His voice was full of sincerity. Besides she did not know how long she had been passed out for. They were alone in the cave with no one to help her. So Yeung Yin Siu could have taken advantage of her and done what he pleased during that time. But he did not. So she was very grateful that Yeung Yin Siu had been a gentleman and behaved himself. But she had one burning question on her mind. She asked in a nervous voice, “Did… Did… Did you see anything?”.

    “Not very much! Only a little!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu in a cheeky voice.

    Bak Tin Kiew reached her right hand forward. Moments a ‘whack’ sound echoed through the cave as Yeung Yin Siu was slapped across the face.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried Bak Tin Kiew moments later. She felt a sharp pain going through her right shoulder. She winced slightly.

    “Eh! Tin Kiew, don’t take it the wrong way! You’re mistaken! I meant to say that I saw your shoulder blade only whilst applying medical herbs to your wounds! I did not see anything else! You can relax now!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a slight grin on his face.

    Pausing for a while, he continued, “I’ve kepted my eyes closed all that time! I could swear a deadly oath if you don’t trust me!”.

    “No! There’s no need! I trust your word!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew in a soft voice.

    Looking down on her right shoulder, Bak Tin Kiew noticed that her wounds have been covered in medical herbs for the first time. Clearing her voice, she said in a gentle and apologetic voice, “Fisherman Ho, I apologise for slapping you earlier! I should have known that you’re a gentleman and would not have anything devious in mind!”.

    “Thank you!”, continued Bak Tin Kiew after a short pause.

    “Tin Kiew, that’s okay! I admit that I was being a little cheeky earlier!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    Looking on the ground Yeung Yin Siu could see the a shadow of Bak Tin Kiew reflecting from the fire before him. He continued, “Also there’s only two of us in this cave! So from now on you may as call me by my real name or brother Yeung if you want!”.

    A slight smile appeared on Bak Tin Kiew’s face upon hearing this. She replied, “Okay brother Yeung! You may also call me by my real name or Ah Kiew if you like!”.

    “Ah Kiew! Are you hungry?”, Yeung Yin Siu decided to ask. He remembered that he was in the process of frying a piece of large before he became startled by Bak Tin Kiew’s scream.

    Bak Tin Kiew could now hear that her tummy was rumbling slightly. She replied without giving it a thought, “Yes! I’m starving!”.

    “Ha! Ha! I thought that would be so! That’s why I caught four large fish! Two each!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst pointing an index finger over to the fish on the ground.

    Seeing that Yeung Yin Siu had kepted his back turned to her all this time, Bak Tin Kiew couldn’t help but let out a little laugh. She said, “Dummy! You can turn around now if you want!”.

    Turning around, Yeung Yin Siu, saw a little girl clutching onto a brown robe trying her best to cover her chest and waist. Her snow-white legs and shoulders were being exposed however. He could feel his heart thumping once more upon seeing this sight. Bak Tin Kiew’s eyes were shining brightly under the light of the fire. Her smile and her face looked very inviting for some reason. Placing a hand over his heart to try and stop it from thumping, Yeung Yin Siu turned around again before saying, “Your clothes are now dry! Why don’t you change first before we continue!”.

    “Don’t you dare turn around then! Unless I say so! Promise! Otherwise I won’t ever talk to you again!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew. She was no longer worried that Yeung Yin Siu was going to peak at her whilst she changed. But she wanted to make certain with a warning that he wouldn’t.

    “Okay! Okay! Hurry up! Just change quickly!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu. His heart was still beating rapidly. He could smell the sweet flagrance of rose perfume in the air. He felt slightly weird and unusual inside. An urge to clasp and hold Bak Tin Kiew in his arms entered in his mind. He also wanted to kiss her rosie red lips. He had never felt this way before and became a little uneasy as a result.

    At this moment Bak Tin Kiew walked across to the big rock next to the fire. She did not take the brown robe with her to cover her body but instead was walking naked underneath the firelight. Looking down on the ground Yeung Yin Siu could now see a shadow with a very slim figure and elegant curves making its way across the cave. Though the shadow was slightly out of proportion it painted a very detailed image in his mind. His heart beat uncontrollably. But he resisted the temptation to turn around and take a closer look.

    Bak Tin Kiew took her pink brassier, white undergarment, and yellow flowing dress from the big rock by the fire before dressing herself again. Saying in a soft and innocent voice, she shouted, “You can turn around now!”.

    Turning around, Yeung Yin Siu saw a pretty little girl dressed in a flowing yellow dress. She was still clutching her right shoulder with her left hand. Indicating that she was still feeling a little sore. In fact she was wincing slightly as her whole body was in a little bit of pain having fallen 200 metres into a pool of ice cold water.

    Yeung Yin Siu couldn’t help but praise, “Excellent choice of dress! You look very beautiful!”.

    “Thanks!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew with a little shy laugh. He face turned slightly red though upon hearing the praise.

    Walking over to pick up the half fried fish off the floor, before sitting back down and placing it over the fire to fry once more, Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “Let’s cook ourselves some lunch them!”.

    “Is there anything I can do to help?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew as she sat by the fire with her hands placed to each side of her face to observe Yeung Yin Siu frying a piece of fish.

    “Eh! Tin Kiew, you’re still injured. I’ll fry them for you!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu casting a side glance and a smile across at Bak Tin Kiew.

    “Big brother Yeung! Okay, if you insist!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew returning an affectionate smile back at Yeung Yin Siu. She suddenly felt warm inside.

    “Here you are!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu whilst passing a piece of fried fish skewed onto a stick over to Bak Tin Kiew in around 5 minutes time.

    “Brother Yeung, thanks!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew taking the piece of fish before taking large bites from it seconds later.

    “Hmm! Very tasty! Even with such simple tools you’re still able to cook up a very good dish! You’re truly amazing!”, praised Bak Tin Kiew all of a sudden with a thumb raised whilst taking large bites from the piece of white fish.

    Yeung Yin Siu skewed another piece of fish onto a long stick before frying it for himself. He removed it from the fire in around 10 minutes time before eating the piece of fish himself. He suddenly felt a large surge of energy flowing through his body upon taking large bites from the fried fish. He felt strong again and the pain around his right stomach region seemed to have subsided a little. The fish appeared to possess some unique properties.

    “Excellent! Excellent! Do you feel a surge of energy through your body upon eating the white fish?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in an excited voice.

    “Now that you’ve mentioned it! I do feel a little better than before!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew whilst shaking her head. She had eaten the entire 30cm fish by now and was patiently waiting for another.

    “Perhaps this fish has some great healing properties!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself as he ate the piece of fish hurriedly. He finished eating moments later.

    Having finished eating, he skewed the last two fish on the same stick to fry them together at the same time over the fire. Bak Tin Kiew sat silent by the fire. She was now turning her head to observe their surroundings. Finally she decided to ask, “Brother Yeung, is there anyway for us to leave this cave?”.

    “Yep!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he continued rotating the long stick to make sure that the fish was well fried. He did not look directly at Bak Tin Kiew when he said this.

    Calming down a little upon reaching the conclusion that they could leave the cave, Bak Tin Kiew, decided to ask in a soft voice, “So we’re only resting here for a little while aren’t we? When do you suppose we should head off?”.

    “I haven’t decided that yet! I suppose we’ll leave when we’re able to think of a way to be able to safely climb 200 metres up the wall of the cave!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a little bit of cheek. He had no idea as to how long they would be stuck down the cave, or how they were going to leave at this point. But he wasn’t worried at all. He figured it wasn’t a total waste of his life even if they were to die together down the dark cave. At least he wouldn’t die alone. So his spirits were high at the moment.

    “Oh!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew, not really understanding the full meaning of what had just been said.

    She remained silent for a while to reflect over Yeung Yin Siu’s comments. All she could hear was the sound of fried fish sizzling above the fire. Suddenly she leaped up onto her feet before gasping out loud, “Brother Yeung! Are you saying that there’s no other way to leave the cave apart from climbing all the way up the wall to reach the top?”.

    “That’s what I said! But don’t worry too much about it! I’m sure there’s a way out here! Let’s just save our strength and recover from our injuries. We’ll take it a day at a time okay? I’ll think of something!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu trying his best to calm Bak Tin Kiew down by sounding positive.

    Bak Tin Kiew did not respond. She remained silent in deep thought with a shocked expression on her face. No one could know what was on her mind at the time. She just gave a lengthy sigh to indicate that she acknowledge that there was nothing that she could do to change the current situation. Finally she decided to ask, “Brother Yeung, what are we going to do?”.

    “Like I said before. All we need to do is to be patient. We’ll get out of here sooner or later. I assure you of that!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu taking a piece of fried fish off his stick, before passing it over to Bak Tin Kiew.

    He took the other fish into his own hands before starting to take large bites of it. After a little while he continued, “Besides, it’s not too bad here! We have plenty of white fish and purple berries to eat as food! We have plenty of fresh water to drink from the crystal clear pool! We can also carve a hole in the ground to use as our bath! There’s a stone table, seat, and bed to rest at as well! In fact this is an excellent place to retire and live out the rest of our lives if we were old! Unfortunately we’re not!”.

    Glancing directly at Bak Tin Kiew, Yeung Yin Siu, decided to say with a smile, “There’s also plenty of excellent kung fu that we can master once we have fully recovered from our injuries!”.

    Upon hearing the words ‘excellent kung fu’ Bak Tin Kiew’s spirits began to rise. She was no longer in a depressed state as she had been previously. She asked in an enthusiastic voice, “Excellent kung fu? What excellent kung fu?”.

    Pointing with an index finger towards the glowing red light that was just visible from where they sat, Yeung Yin Siu said, “See there! There’s a secret bedroom carved into the side of that wall! Within that room are drawings depicting the Iron Blood sword arts, palms, and inner energy! What’s more there’s also the Essence Dissolving Art and the Divine Red Moon Sect sword arts as well! These are the renowned kung fu of Tit Miu Lan of the Demon Cult and Yeung Kai Seng of the orthodox clan!”.

    “But you’re not allowed to learn any of the Iron Blood sword arts, palms, and inner energy left behind by Tit Miu Lan okay!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu sounding very serious.

    “Why not?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew looking a little annoyed. Ever since she was 10 she had wanted to learn kung fu. She did not really care which ones, as long as they helped her to accomplish her life long mission. So she was slightly upset that Yeung Yin Siu had just mentioned to her that she was not allowed to learn a particular type of kung fu.

    “Because these arts have over the generations belonged to the ‘Tit’ family and the Demon Cult! A great Demon Cult warrior, named Tit But Dik founded them after years of meditation! We’re both outsiders! What’s more you’re an outsider from a respectful orthodox clan. So of course you’re not allowed to learn it! Besides these arts are considered to be evil and wicked by all members of the respectful orthodox clans!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk on his face.

    Yeung Yin Siu was never going to allow the Chancellor’s daughter to be learning such arts. He had several reasons for doing this. For one, he wanted to protect the reputation of Bak Tin Kiew. He knew it would bring the ‘Bak’ family great trouble if Bak Tin Kiew was to openly use it in the future. Secondly, he did not want the arts of the ‘Tit’ family to fall into the hands of an outsider who could potentially use it against the Demon Cult, or worse Tit Yum Ching herself. Thirdly, he only wanted to copy the arts so that he could give them to Tit Yum Ching in the future.

    “But we’re both outsiders in relation to Yeung Kai Seng as well! So why are we allowed to learn the martial arts that belong him and not the martial arts that belong to Tit Miu Lan?”, protested Bak Tin Kiew having not been totally satisfied with the reason she had been given.

    Pausing for a while, Yeung Yin Siu, continued, “I already told you that my real surname was ‘Yeung’ didn’t I?”.

    “So what? I don’t understand!”, responded Bak Tin Kiew.

    “Well to tell you the truth I’m not a total outsider! The martial arts in the cave belong to Yeung Kai Seng of the ‘Yeung’ family! So we’re able to learn them!”, concluded Yeung Yin Siu. He had no idea about his own origins and whether he was related to Yeung Kai Seng or not. All he wanted to do was prevent Bak Tin Kiew from learning the Iron Blood martial arts. It was a different story with the martial arts left behind by Yeung Kai Seng. They were from the orthodox stream, and thus Yeung Yin Siu considered that it was appropriate for them to be learning such arts.

    “So you’re saying you’re a distant relation of Yeung Kai Seng, and therefore we can both learn his martial arts! Well fine! Have it your own way then! I promise I won’t learn the martial arts left behind by Tit Miu Lan then! Are you happy now?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew whilst still feeling a little annoyed that she had been denied an opportunity to learn a unique set of martial arts that has probably been lost over the generations.

    “Don’t be too upset! The Divine Red Moon Sect’s sword arts and the Essence Dissolving Art are the two advance kung fu of Yeung Kai Seng! He used these arts to obtain the title of ‘Grand Champion of Wulin’ during his generation! So they’re more than enough for you to learn to be able to avenge the death of your mother!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu taking a bite from his fish. He finished eating moments later.

    After a short pause he continued, “Besides Yeung Kai Seng’s kung fu and sword art are from the orthodox stream and originated from Shaolin! So you can use these arts openly!”.

    “Oh!” replied Bak Tin Kiew upon finish eating as well. She finally understood why Yeung Yin Siu had tried to prevent her from learning the Iron Blood martial arts. A smile crept across her face upon this realisation.

    “How did you know that I want to learn these arts to avenge my mother?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew all of a sudden.

    “It’s simple! You’ve already told me before that you left Taishan to learn kung fu to avenge the death of your mother! Also your master, Fung Mun Kit, has only taught you in the art of self-defence only! So you do not yet have the skills to avenge the death of your mother! So obviously you need to learn these skills for that purpose!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. Bak Tin Kiew remained silent and did not respond. Yeung Yin Siu knew he had guessed correctly.

    After finishing lunch, Yeung Yin Siu led Bak Tin Kiew to the secret bedroom to show her the various drawings. Yeung Yin Siu also told her the story about how Yeung Kai Seng and his wife ended up being trapped down by the cave. Not long after they decided to remove and bury Yeung Kai Seng and Tit Miu Lan’s skeletons by the corner. They marked the graves with two large rocks before carving their names into the rock with Bak Tin Kiew’s sword. The bedroom was now their’s to do as they wished. Bak Tin Kiew remained in the room to observe the various drawings on the wall. She too had tried to pull the Iron Blood sword from the table without much success.

    Yeung Yin Siu on the other hand continued walking through the cave with a torch in his hand. He discovered that the cave was bigger than he had first realised. There was another secret room opposite to that of the bedroom. It was a toilet carved into the wall of the rock. He was feeling a little relieved upon this discovery as it meant that he did not have to carve one into the rock of the wall himself. There was another secret room behind the big rock by the fire. Within that room were various plants with wild berries and herbs. It was obvious that despite being poisoned that these two elite fighters had lived in the cave for a long time.

    That night Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew ate white fish for dinner again. They sat by the fire and chatted about a range of things from calligraphy, poetry, wine drinking, to childhood stories. They also played some little games, and rhyme chimes. It was all they could to do to pass the time. None of them were healthy enough to start learning the kung fu on the walls of the cave. Feeling a little tired, Bak Tin Kiew decided to rest at the small bed carved into the rock surface. Although there was no fire in the secret bedroom, the warmth being radiated from the Iron Blood sword was more than enough to keep her warm during the night. She slept very peacefully that particular night. Carving a mark into the large rock to the side of the fire to represent the number of days they had been in the cave, Yeung Yin Siu decided to rest by the pool of water. He had trouble sleeping that particular night. His heart couldn’t stop itself from beating rapidly.

    Soon the lone mark on the big rock by the side of the fire became, two, then three, four, five, and so forth. By the 10th day both Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu had fully recovered from their injuries. The white fish, wild berries, and medical herbs they ate had special properties that speeded up the healing process. They immediately started to practice the marital arts depicted on the wall on the 11th day. Yeung Yin Siu would give Bak Tin Kiew some helpful pointers when she struggled to understand the essence of the martial arts depicted in the drawings. Up to this point both Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew had been well behaved. Bak Tin Kiew spent the evenings by herself in the secret bedroom. She would play a mellow tune with her jade bamboo flute to pass the time. The music echoed through the cave. Yeung Yin Siu had spent his nights out by the fire near the lake. He would listen to the music being played by Bak Tin Kiew and hum a mellow tune to himself.

    During the days they would spend time chatting and joking with each other to keep their spirits and morale up. But most of the time they would be together in the secret bedroom practising the martial arts on the wall. Yeung Yin Siu had also carved a small bath into the hard dirt surface with a self-made spade. It was basically a thin plate of rock at the end of a long stick. Whenever they wanted to bathe, Yeung Yin Siu, would transfer some fresh water from the crystal clear pool to the bath using leaves weaved into the shape of a bucket. He would then heat up a couple small rocks by the fire before placing them in the bath to heat up the water. When Bak Tin Kiew bathed, Yeung Yin Siu would sit in the secret bedroom and hum a tune to give Bak Tin Kiew some privacy. Bak Tin Kiew did the same in return. Once they finished bathing Yeung Yin Siu would start a fire next to the bath to evaporate all of the water so that they could bath in clean water each day. Yeung Yin Siu had also grown a short beard and moustache during this period. He did not bother to shave with his short knife. When he had a moment spare, Yeung Yin Siu, would stand below the entrance of the cave pondering how they could leave the cave. But he had not yet come up with a good idea. Each and every single one of his ideas thus far were filled with great risk. Time passed like this for another 19 days. A lot had happened throughout wulin during this time, but they were none the wiser.

    “We’ve been here for a whole stinky month! There’s no way out of here!”, pondered Yeung Yin Siu by himself as he leaned against the big rock by the fire with a dejected look on his face.

    It was now very late in the evening, but Yeung Yin Siu was not to know that. He had no idea of the time as the cave had always been filled with darkness. The small ray of light shining from above the opening of the cave was the only indication he had of whether it was day or night. Looking above Yeung Yin Siu noticed it was pitch dark. He gave a long and loud sigh before taking out his small knife to carve a mark onto the big rock he was leaning on.

    “31 days and counting!”, he remarked to himself. He figured that Bak Tin Kiew must have been resting as usual on the rock bed in the secret room.

    As hard as he tried Yeung Yin Siu could not get himself to sleep that night. He shut his eyes tightly hoping that he would suddenly fall asleep but he did not. For some reason the once soft splashing sounds made by the white fish as they swam around the water seemed to be echoing very loudly in the cave. The soft dripping of the water from the side of the cave suddenly seemed very annoying. He tried counting to 100 in his mind in order to tire his brain into sleeping but that did not work either. Striking a fist on the ground, Yeung Yin Siu, sat up again before picking up more dry debry from around the cave to stoke the fire. A yellowish glow of light spread throughout the cave.

    Moments later he picked up a long stick from off the ground before standing with his front leg pointed forward in an attacking position. His back leg was bent to support him. The long stick was held high above his head with the tip pointed towards an imaginary opponent. He gave a soft cry before suddenly flashing the stick forward before twisting his body to the right. Underneath the firelight it appeared as if he had suddenly separated into three people. A strike was then launched towards an imaginary opponent’s mid stomach region. The left image of him flashed the stick towards the right. The left image flashed the stick towards the right. Finally the central image flashed the stick straightforward. Three soft ‘clang’ sounds echoed through the air as three holes appeared in a small rock nearby. Upon completing this move, one could noticed that Yeung Yin Siu was now standing on the left side of the rock despite having initially having twisted right. This was the ‘red moon reflecting in the lake’ stance from the Divine Red Moon sword arts.

    “What use is this move! I’m never going to leave here alive”, cursed Yeung Yin Siu as he threw the stick on the ground.

    Both he and Bak Tin Kiew had now grasped the basics of the Essence Dissolving Art and the Divine Red Moon sword arts left behind by Yeung Kai Seng upon practising it virtually every night and day. His skills had now been further refined, and he figured he could now beat Cloud with great ease. In fact his skills were probably as good as Thunder, and Fung Mun Kit by now, but still a level below Lightning and the various Chiefs and clan leaders of the elite sects. His skills are still far inferior to that of Bak Fung Wan and the Black Dragon Swordsman. He needed to practise the Divine Red Moon sword arts and the Essence Dissolving Art for a few years yet in order to achieve the same level of ability. Bak Tin Kiew on the other hand had only made steady progress and could now be considered as a moderately skilled fighter. Having only recently began training in martial arts, her inner energy levels were not as high and thus her progression was not as rapid as Yeung Yin Siu, who has been studying martial arts since the age of three.

    Many thoughts ran through Yeung Yin Siu’s mind at the moment. He had wanted to leave the cave to locate the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Art manuals. He also wanted to travel to Chongqing to confront the Black Dragon Swordsman. Yet it seemed as if fate was against him. Suddenly another thought entered his mind as he shot a glance at the red light being emitted from the secret room, “It’s not too bad being stuck down this cave!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu finally felt peaceful at heart as he laid back down on the ground to rest. Shortly after closing his eyes, Yeung Yin Siu felt someone tugging him by the sleeve. It was none other than Bak Tin Kiew. She said in a soft voice, “Brother Yeung, I haven’t been able to sleep tonight!”.

    Opening his eyes again, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “Neither have I. What’s been troubling on your mind?”.

    “Nothing! It’s really nothing!”, remarked Bak Tin Kiew whilst turning to leave. She had an uneasy expression on her face.

    “You don’t have to lie to me! You were wondering whether there’s anyway to leave this dam stinky cave don’t you?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk. He figured that Bak Tin Kiew had grown tired of living in the small cave, eating nothing but fried, and baked fish for the past 31 days.

    “That’s just part of it! I haven’t been sleeping well lately!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew as she gave a long sigh.

    “Oh! So your nightmares have returned! Haven’t they?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in a caring voice. By now he virtually knew all there was to know about Bak Tin Kiew. Talking was the only way for her to release the boredom in her heart for the past 31 days.

    “Yes! They’ve been getting worse and worse!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew. Her face turning slightly pale as the images of her nightmare flashed through her mind once more.

    Pausing for a moment, Bak Tin Kiew, asked in a shy and low voice, “Brother Yeung, can I ask a favour of you?”.

    “Why, of course! What is it?”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He had no idea what Bak Tin Kiew had wanted him to do, so he was very curious.

    “Can you come and sleep in my room tonight?”, shyly asked Bak Tin Kiew once more. He face turning slightly red upon saying this.

    Yeung Yin Siu did not respond. His heart was beating rapidly again. Taking a closer look at Bak Tin Kiew for the first time, he noticed that she was wasn’t wearing a dress at the moment. All she was wearing was her white undergarment and pink brassier underneath showing off her slim body and soft curves. He became lost in a trance. Various thoughts entered his mind.

    Seeing the troubled expression on Yeung Yin Siu’s face, Bak Tin Kiew decided to say in a low voice, “It’s much easier for me to sleep if I know there’s someone by my side!”.

    Snapping out of his daze, Yeung Yin Siu asked, “What was that you said? I missed it?”.

    Bak Tin Kiew’s face became even redder upon hearing this. She had only wanted to ask this once, and had not intended to ask it a second time. She was going to say, “Oh its nothing!”, but changed her mind at the last minute.

    Glancing nervously she replied, “Having someone by my side is the only way I can sleep tonight!”.

    “Don’t get the wrong idea! When I was at Taishan, my maid would use to sleep by my side whenever I found it difficult to sleep because of the recurring nightmares! But there’s no one else in this cave! I’m scared! So wondered if you’d mind spending the night in my room!”, continued Bak Tin Kiew. For some reason she felt her heart beating very rapidly as well. She turned her face away all of a sudden. Afraid that she might meet Yeung Yin Siu’s eyes with a glance.

    “Of course I wouldn’t mind!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he leaped up onto his feet. Moments later he grabbed Bak Tin Kiew gently by the hand to help her up onto her feet.

    Bak Tin Kiew felt a sudden bolt shoot through her heart upon realising that they were holding hands. She frantically tried to pulled them away. But Yeung Yin Siu did not let go. She cried out, “Don’t! Let go!”.

    “What?”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a blank expression on his face.

    “Let go of my hands! I can walk to the bedroom myself!”, continued Bak Tin Kiew. Her heart was beating rapidly at this point.

    Releasing his grasp of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands, Yeung Yin Siu, remarked with a smirk, “Okay! Okay! Relax! I’m letting go!”.

    Bak Tin Kiew led the way as Yeung Yin Siu followed closely behind with his head lowered a little. Upon entering the room Bak Tin Kiew immediately removed the blankets before sliding onto the bed to rest. Yeung Yin Siu sat himself at the table like a true gentleman would.

    Seeing that Yeung Yin Siu had not approached the bed Bak Tin Kiew said, “Dummy! I still won’t be able to sleep if I don’t have someone resting by my side!”.

    “You can sleep here tonight!”, continued Bak Tin Kiew whilst tapping to the side of the bed next to her. Her face turned red upon saying this, but one would not be able to notice underneath the red glowing light.

    Taking off his black top and placing it on the table, Yeung Yin Siu approached the bed. He took off his boots before slipping himself underneath the blanket and rested on the bed. He was now laying side by side on the small bed for two with Bak Tin Kiew. He could feel her warm soft body gently brushing up against his.

    Closing her eyes to rest, Bak Tin Kiew warned, “Brother Yeung, I’ve only asked you to sleep here to keep me company. Don’t try anything! Or else!”.

    “Humph! What do you take me for?”, protested Yeung Yin Siu turning his body to the side.

    Moments later Bak Tin Kiew fell into a deep sleep. Yeung Yin Siu on the other hand could not get himself to sleep. Hearing that Bak Tin Kiew was now softly snoring away, he couldn’t help but propping himself up slightly. He turned his body around to face Bak Tin Kiew. Underneath the glowing light he could see the pretty and innocent face Bak Tin Kiew before him. He suddenly had an urge to lean forward and kiss Bak Tin Kiew on the lips. He was experiencing his first awakening of love, and the flowery scent of the rose perfume intoxicated his heart making it harder for him to resist. He momentarily froze on the bed.

    Fighting off the temptation, he was just about to lie down and rest when Bak Tin Kiew’s right arm was flung across his chest. Moments later her right leg brushed pass the side of Yeung Yin Siu’s thigh. She was now hugging him tightly, though she was still snoring softly. She had no idea what she was doing at this moment in time. The side of her face brushed against the side of Yeung Yin Siu’s face. Yeung Yin Siu could feel the tiny soft body pressed up hard against his, making his heart beat faster and faster. He could feel blood flowing rapidly through certain regions of his body. Suddenly Bak Tin Kiew gripped him tightly as sweat began forming on her forehead. She then started rolling uncontrollably left, right, left and then right again. It was obvious that she was having a nightmare again. Yeung Yin Siu took this opportunity to take Bak Tin Kiew’s hands into his own. She calmed down a little shortly after.

    “Mother! I’m here!”, cried Bak Tin Kiew taking her hand away before giving Yeung Yin Siu a tight hug. Yeung Yin Siu returned the gesture and hugged her tightly.

    Moments later she cried out, “Noooooo!”, before awakening from her nightmare.

    “What the heck? What on earth do you think you’re doing? Let go now?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew upon noticing that she and Yeung Yin Siu were embracing each other in a tight hug. She had wanted to slap Yeung Yin Siu across the face, for what she thought was un-gentleman like conduct, but she could not remove her hand for the time being. They were still embracing tightly on the bed.

    “Eh! Tin Kiew, don’t blame me for this!”, cheekily replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst holding onto Bak Tin Kiew.

    Releasing his grip slightly he continued, “In fact I was sleeping peacefully when you suddenly reached over and hugged me! Before saying ‘Mother I’m here’!”.

    “Oh!”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew. During her days at Taishan her maid would often tell her that she spoke in her dreams and did a number of other things as well. So she knew it was not Yeung Yin Siu’s fault that they were hugging each other. But at the same time she couldn’t help but feel a little annoyed.

    “Did you really think that I would take advantage of you whilst you were sleeping? What kind of man do you think I am?”, protested Yeung Yin Siu. Though he had been tempted on many occasions he could not bring himself to do it. He was indeed a true gentleman who was caught up in a sea of emotions as a result of experiencing an awakening of true love for the first time.

    Bak Tin Kiew suddenly felt something hard pressing against her thigh. She gasped a little. Twisting her body to break free she remarked, “Eh! Brother Yeung! There’s no need to carry your small knife to bed with you. There’s no one else around but the two of us! So you don’t need to be on the alert for an unexpected ambush during the night!”.

    Moments later Bak Tin Kiew reached her hand down to grab what she thought had been Yeung Yin Siu’s small knife so she could throw it away from the bed. Yeung Yin Siu had wanted to say something at this point, but Bak Tin Kiew acted too quickly.

    “What the heck?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew as she reached under the blanket before grabbing a hard object in her hand. She gave it a tug to try and remove it from the bed.

    “Ouch!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Why aren’t you letting go?”, protested Bak Tin Kiew upon thinking that Yeung Yin Siu was holding onto his knife and not letting go. It did not occur to her that if it had indeed been Yeung Yin Siu’s knife pressed hard against her thigh, she would have suffered a wound.

    Feeling slightly embarrassed by the recent events, Yeung Yin Siu, couldn’t help but give a little laugh. He said with a big grin, “Eh! Tin Kiew, you better let go now! It’s not very appropriate for a young lady to be doing what you’re currently doing!”.

    Reaching down further, Bak Tin Kiew, felt something very soft. Reaching her hand up before pushing it forwards she touched Yeung Yin Siu’s lower stomach. She suddenly leaped up from the bed. Being a virgin, Bak Tin Kiew, had no idea what she had initially done or what part of Yeung Yin Siu’s body she had just touched. But her natural reaction and instinct told her that she had done something wrong.

    “Brother Yeung, I’m sorry! I didn’t realise… I didn’t realise… that… that… I had hold you still!”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew out loud. Her face turning red once more.

    “Oh! It’s nothing!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu unable to contain his laughter.

    “Sorry!”, said Bak Tin Kiew once more. She had read medical books and journals before, so realised that the anatomy of a male and female were different. She had in fact guessed by now which part of Yeung Yin Siu’s anatomy she had touched. Suddenly she broke out in a little laughter herself as well upon realising what had happened.

    Both Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu were now laughing hard together. Bak Tin Kiew had now overcome her initial shyness. Moments later she stopped laughing and fixed her glance at Yeung Yin Siu for the first time. The manly scent of Yeung Yin Siu captivated her heart. She smiled slightly, making her look all innocent and pure. Yeung Yin Siu met Bak Tin Kiew’s glance. He leant forward slightly before landing a gentle kiss her on her rose red lips. Bak Tin Kiew pulled back initially and motioned to slap him in the face. But her heart was pounding rapidly also. She could no longer overcome her own emotions. This was Bak Tin Kiew’s first awakening of love as well. She froze on the spot and hesitated. She was unsure as what to do next. Before she had made up her mind, Yeung Yin Siu leant forward again and kissed her once. Finally her natural instincts took over. She leant forward and kissed Yeung Yin Siu. She placed both of her arms around his shoulders and hugged him tightly. They exchanged a series of passionate kisses. Both of them felt a warm and comfortable feeling flowing through their bodies. Passion had been building up inside their hearts for the past 31 days. They felt as if they could no longer hold on. Otherwise they would both explode.

    “Wait! Stop!”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew out loud moments later upon realising that Yeung Yin Siu had motioned to undress her.

    “Why?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in shock as he gently kissed her neck by the right side.

    “Because we just can’t! Not yet anyway! Please understand that!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew pulling herself away.

    Bak Tin Kiew’s natural instincts told her what they were about to do, as much as she wanted it to happen herself, was inappropriate at this moment in time. Though she had loved Yeung Yin Siu with all of her heart since the events at the Demon Valley, she was still unsure as to whether he had really loved her or not. So she did not want to totally commit herself just yet. She had also heard her father, Bak Fung Wan, say that women of the Divine Butterfly Sect would lose 25% of their inner energy upon losing their virginity. She did not want that to happen just yet as she had not yet avenged the death of her mother. It would be a heavy price to pay indeed, so she could not afford a mistake.

    But she did not mind Yeung Yin Siu holding onto her body with his strong arms, whilst they slept. So she decided to say, “Brother Yeung! I just want you to hold me! There’s nothing more! Understand!”.

    Shaking his head, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “I don’t understand! Don’t you love me?”.

    “Yes… But… But… We just can’t! I’m not ready yet… Do you understand?”, mumbled Bak Tin Kiew trying to think of the right words to say.

    “I promise that I’ll never hurt you or ever break your heart! Trust me!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu moving forward to hold Bak Tin Kiew in his arms.

    “Don’t say ‘never’ or ‘ever’! I heard my father once say that few things in this world last forever except change and time! He also said never say never as the inevitable are most certain to happen!”, remarked Bak Tin Kiew. She was saying these things merely for herself. They reminded her to be cautious.

    Turning to Yeung Yin Siu, she decided to say, “Brother Yeung, I’m not ready yet! I hope you respect that! Just hold me tonight!”.

    “Okay! As you wish!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst sounding a little disappointed. He wrapped his strong arms around Bak Tin Kiew’s tiny body. Soon both of them fell into a deep sleep whilst holding onto each other.

    From that night onwards, Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew’s love for each other began to grow. They would hug and kiss each other in between practising king fu stances. They held each other’s hands and sat side by side in front of the fire when they rested. Yeung Yin Siu no longer slepted outside by the pool all alone. Each and every night that had passed by, he and Bak Tin Kiew would share the same bed. But as always Bak Tin Kiew would remain firm and would not allow her emotions to get the better of her. The nightmares she had been having disappeared from the night that Yeung Yin Siu slepted by her side.

    At the wink of an eye another 15 days passed by just like this. With each passing day, Yeung Yin Siu’s and Bak Tin Kiew’s inner energy were getting stronger and stronger. Their skills in the Divine Red Moon sword arts and the Essence Dissolving Art became further refined. The white fish did indeed have some unique properties. Yeung Yin Siu had also managed to copy the Iron Blood sword arts, palms, and inner energy onto a piece of black silk cloth. On the 46st day, Yeung Yin Siu, decided to utilise his Essence Dissolving Art to pull the Iron Blood Sword from the table. He had dissolved the chi energy binding the sword to the table. With a flick of the wrist he was able to pull the sword from the table. He noticed that the sword was very heavy, despite being very long and thin. The sword no longer radiated heat upon being pulled from the table. It actually felt quite cool.

    On the 47nd morning, Yeung Yin Siu was sitting by the fire carving a number short wooden pegs around 30cms long. One could see there was a beaming smile on his face as he hummed a mellow tune.

    “Big brother Yeung, good morning! What are you doing?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in a curious voice upon sitting herself by the fire.

    “Kiew yee, morning! I’m just making some wooden pegs!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a beaming grin. By now his entire face had been covered in hair. He looked very much like an old man. No one in wulin would be able to recognise him. The Iron Blood Sword rested by his side.

    “I can see that! But what an earth for?”, replied Bak Tin Kiew sounding a little annoyed.

    “After I’ve made enough of these, we can use them to escape from here!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu as he picked up another long stick before carving another small wooden peg.

    “Err… Escape from here! How?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in a curious voice. Though she was slightly happy upon hearing that they could escape from the cave, she was slightly sadden at the same time. Her heart told her that nothing was going to be the same between them once they leave the cave. She was no afraid of losing Yeung Yin Siu.

    Moments later, Yeung Yin Siu picked up a small peg and threw it against the rock wall. A loud ‘clang’ sound echoed through the cave moments later as half of the wooden peg struck into the side of the wall.

    Pointing to the other half of the peg that was sticking out from the side of the wall, Yeung Yin Siu, said, “See for yourself! We can use these pegs to make a ladder to the side of the wall to climb all the way up to the top!”.

    “But how will we climb out of the opening of the cave? We can only use the pegs to climb up to the side to a certain height!”, asked Bak Tin Kiew whilst pointing up to the opening of the cave. One could notice that it was domed shaped at the top.

    “Simple! We need to weave a rope around 30 metres in length and tie it to a thick log about 1.5 metres long! Once we reached the top we’ll throw the log out of the opening of the cave. The log will support us and allow us to climb up to the top using the rope!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. After 47 days living below the cave, he had finally thought of a safe way to escape.

    “I see! Is there anything I can do to help?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew upon realising that Yeung Yin Siu’s plans would work.

    “Yes. You can start gathering all of the vines to weave a long rope! Also find a thick log that is around 1.5 metres in length!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst casting an affectionate glance back at Bak Yin Kiew.

    “Right away!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew as she leaped up onto her feet and skipped around the cave to gather some vines.

    Another 10 days passed by as Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew made the necessary preparations to leave the cave. Each day, Yeung Yin Siu would climb up to the side of the wall before sticking a peg into the rock to support them. He deliberately used a lot of pegs upon realising that Bak Tin Kiew was much shorter then him and would find it difficult to climb up the wall. He finished inserting the pegs all the way up to the dome of the cave just below the opening on the 58th day. Bak Tin Kiew had also finished weaving a rope and had found a thick log to tie the end of the rope to. They had agreed to set off on the morning of the 59th day.

    Bak Tin Kiew felt very uncomfortable during the evening. She finally decided to ask, “Big brother Yeung, is it really necessary to leave the cave so soon?”.

    “Eh! Kiew yee, we’ve been stuck here a long time! It’s been around two months already! I had promised to meet up with my uncle and auntie at the White Horse Inn in Chongqing! I’m running late already so we must leave immediately!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    Turning to face Bak Tin Kiew, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Also don’t you want to avenge the death of your mother? The sooner we leave the sooner you can track down the identity of those who murdered your mother!”.

    “Aren’t you going to come along with me?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew whilst placing her arms over Yeung Yin Siu’s shoulders.

    Yeung Yin Siu hesitated. He had never given it much thought having made up his mind a long time ago that he would track down the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon Sword Arts, before going to Chongqing to confront the Black Dragon Swordsman. But at the same time he did not want to leave Bak Tin Kiew by herself. He knew her abilities were not yet good enough to roam through wulin. He gave a long sigh before replying, “Okay, I’ll come along with you! But first we will head to Kaifeng!”.

    “Kaifeng? Why Kaifeng?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in shock. She wanted to head off to Fuzhou to further investigate the Divine Tiger Sect. The wounds on the neck of the Black Phoenix Assassin, were the same as the wounds on her mother. So she suspected that one of the murderers belonged to the Divine Tiger Sect. She did not understand why Yeung Yin Siu had wanted to start their journey at Kaifeng.

    “I have some unfinished business in Kaifeng that I need to take care off with Blacksmith Chan!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst flashing the Iron Blood Sword left and right in the air.

    Smiling slightly he continued, “Also I want to catch up for a drink at the Dragon Tavern with three good old friends of mine! Surely you can guess who they are! You’ve met them before at the Golden Dragon Inn!”.

    “You mean the 3 Freaks of Kaifeng! Chopstick Lee, Mischievous Monk, and the Lucky Doctor? But why do you want to meet them?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew once more. She was slightly puzzled.

    “It’s been two months already! Surely they will have some news as to whether they were able to locate the senior apprentice of the Lion Prestige Escort, Dik Ho Tin!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a beaming grin. Since he was going to travel with Bak Tin Kiew, he figured it was best to kill two birds with one stone.

    “Perhaps you’re right! The 3 Freaks of Kaifeng may have found some important information relevant to the death of my mother during all this time!”, agreed Bak Tin Kiew. A smile flashed across her face upon this realisation.

    “Don’t talk too much! Get some rest! We’ll head off first thing in the morning! Good night!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst shutting his eyes.

    “Big brother Yeung, good night!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew as she shut her eyes as well.

    That night Yeung Yin Siu shut his eyes and fell into a deep sleep. It was the first time that he had been able to rest so easily. Most of the other nights he had spent twisting and turning in the bed trying to figure a way to leave the cave. Bak Tin Kiew on the other hand found it very difficult to rest. Her heart was not at ease so she got off the bed and walked around the cave for a while. A number of thoughts flashed through her mind. She remembered that Yeung Yin Siu and Siu Wai appeared to be very close. She had also heard that Yeung Yin Siu had met secretly with Tit Yum Ching before they left the Demon Valley. She was afraid that she would lose him one day. Down at the cave they were by themselves so no one could break them apart. But it was going to be different from now on. Another thought flashed passed her mind as she remembered that her mother’s death needed avenging. She cursed herself for thinking only of herself before walking back to the bed. Closing her eyes she finally decided to rest.

    Yeung Yin Siu was the first one to wake up in the morning. He walked around the cave to make the final preparations to leave. He caught two little fish for breakfast before deciding to wake Bak Tin Kiew up. The two of them sat by the fire and ate, but for some reason no one spoke a word to each other. Bak Tin Kiew collected all of her items and placed them back into her travelling bag. Yeung Yin Siu did the same. He took a long piece of wood before thrusting the Iron Blood Sword into the middle.

    Bak Tin Kiew saw what Yeung Yin Siu had just done so couldn’t help but ask, “Big brother Yeung, what on earth are you doing?”.

    “It’s best if I hide this sword before giving it back to the rightful owner!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he picked up the long stick containing the Iron Blood Sword before strapping it onto his back.

    “You’re not going to keep it?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew in shock.

    “No! I’m returning this sword and the Iron Blood martial arts to Tit Yum Ching whenever I have the opportunity! She’s the last of the ‘Tit’ family bloodline and these belong to her!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst looking up at the opening of the cave.

    Walking to the side of the wall he said, “Put out the fire! The sun is up already! Let’s leave this place!”.

    “Right behind you!”, shouted Bak Tin Kiew as she kicked out the fire. Upon looking up she noticed that Yeung Yin Siu had already climbed some distance up the wall.

    Bak Tin Kiew followed Yeung Yin Siu closely behind. She reached the top of the wall where in shaped into a dome in around 15 minutes time. By now Yeung Yin Siu was climbing up the rope made of vines towards the entrance of the cave. He had already thrown the long log out of the cave to support him as he climbed up. Moments later he disappeared from sight.

    “Kiew yee, catch! Don’t be afraid! Just climb up! I’ll hold onto the log for you!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu upon reaching the top. He threw the rope made of vines back down the cave towards Bak Tin Kiew.

    Bak Tin Kiew caught the rope and started to climb up. It was a lot harder for her because inner energy was not as high as that of Yeung Yin Siu. But she finally reached the top in around 10 minutes time. Yeung Yin Siu stretched out a land to pull her up.

    Sniffing the air he remarked, “Ah! The fresh air, and the sunlight! I’ve missed you both!”. He lent down and kiss the ground moments later.

    By now Bak Tin Kiew was sitting by the entrance of the cave sweating and panting slightly. She also place a hand on her forehead to shield her eyes from the sun. She had a little bit of difficulty seeing as the two of them had spent the past two months being surrounded by darkness.

    “Don’t worry! You’re eyes will get use to it!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu with a grin upon seeing that Bak Tin Kiew had been shielding her eyes from the sun.

    “I’m fine!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew with a smile. She was glad that Yeung Yin Siu had been so concerned about her.

    After a short rest Yeung Yin Siu walked around and found a large rock. He pushed it towards the cave before covering the entrance of the cave with it. Moments later he grabbed Bak Tin Kiew’s hands and held them into his own. He said, “Kiew yee, let’s leave this place! We’ll go back down to the Hennan port! Hopefully Ah Kau is still there waiting for us!”.

    “Okay!”, agreed Bak Tin Kiew standing up to leave.

    “Wait! We’re still in Demon Cult territory! You must put this on!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu as he handed over the white mask back to Bak Tin Kiew. She took it and wore it on her face once more. Moments later she tied a bit of black cloth over the hilt of the sword to cover up the two butterflies.

    They were just about to leap up along the slopes when something caught Bak Tin Kiew’s eyes. She said whilst pointing at a rotten corpse full of arrows before her, “Big brother Yeung, look! It’s the corpses of all of our friends and allies that we went to the annual general meeting with!”.

    “Not only that! There are also various bodies of the people who ambushed us!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu as he turned his head left and right to observe the corpses on the slopes.

    By now Bak Tin Kiew had moved closer and stood over the dead corpse that had been pierced by over 50 arrows. The flesh had rotted beyond the stage of recognition. But there was something very familiar about this corpse. There was a long black bow resting by the side of the body. He wore a cape with a black eagle embroided on the back.

    Yeung Yin Siu immediately rushed up to the corpse. He said, “This corpse belongs to the Black Eagle Assassin! He risked his life to save ours! Let’s give him a proper burial along with the Black Phoenix Assassin!”.

    “What about the others?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew turning to have a look at Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Just pile them up so we can burn them!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu. By now Yeung Yin Siu was running over a number of the corpses to see which one of them had a black phoenix embroided onto the back of the red cape. Moments later he picked up another corpse that had rotted beyond recognition before returning by Bak Tin Kiew’s side.

    Moments later he began digging two large graves in the ground using the a shelf mad shovel at the end of a long stick. He finished in around 20 minutes time before placing the Black Eagle Assassin and the Black Phoenix Assassin into the dirt graves. He picked two medium sized rocks to mark the graves and carved the words, “Here lies the Black Eagle Assassin and the Black Phoenix Assassin!”.

    After burying the bodies, Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew leaped up along the side of the slope. It was covered in dead corpses and there was a foul odour of death in the air.

    “Interesting! Why did men from the Lion Prestige Escort attack us?”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu all of a sudden as he examined one of the corposes wearing black robes and a black mask. A blue robe with a golden lion embroided on the back was revealed underneath the torn black robe.

    “Look, here’s a swordsman from the Kunlun Sect!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew examining another body.

    “Here’s a nun from the Emei Sect!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he investigated another corpse.

    “There’s another swordsman here! But I have no idea which Sect his from!”, remarked Bak Tin Kiew pointing to a swordsman wearing a golden robe with black trimmings.

    “That’s a swordsman from the Divine Tiger Sect!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he searched along the ground. He recalled the image from his dream. He had seen a swordsman dressed like that claiming to be from the Divine Tiger Sect. So he figured he had guessed correctly.

    Moments later he picked up a square insignia. He remarked was casting an uneasy glance at Bak Tin Kiew. He said, “This insignia has the words ‘Chancellor of Wulin’ carved on it! Do you recognise this insignia?”.

    “What are you implying? My father would never order anyone to attack the Demon Cult!”, protested Bak Tin Kiew looking very annoyed at the fact that Yeung Yin Siu had accused her father of launching the ambush attack.

    “Apart from your father, who else is known as the Chancellor of Wulin? Besides why are there so many orthodox clan members here? How can you explain that?”, rebutted Yeung Yin Siu as he passed the insignia over to Bak Tin Kiew for closer inspection.

    He suddenly had a thought, “Dam! What if auntie and uncle have been captured? I must rescue them!”.

    He was about to dash off when he heard Bak Tin Kiew say, “This does not belong to my father. His insignia is blue and the words, ‘Chancellor of Wulin’ are written in red! But this insignia is black and the words are written in gold!”.

    “Are you sure?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in shock.

    “Of course! I’m the Chancellor’s daughter! So I would know! Father is very found of the colours blue and red! He would never change the colour of the insignia’s!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew. She was very confident that her father had not led this ambush on them.

    Suddenly another thought crossed her mind as she remarked, “What if something has happened to my father?”.

    “Let’s leave here quickly and head to Taishan via Kaifeng! We’ll find out sooner or later!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst grabbing hold of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands. He remembered the poem about the 5 Greats in his dreams. He suddenly became very concerned.

    Around two hours later they reached the main city of Hennan once more. They were just about to enter the Golden Dragon Inn to ask the hotel manager about whether he had seen, Kiu Pin Fok, Fung Mun Kit, Fung Lau Yin and the others, when a handsome young man dressed in black robes ran passed them like a black blur. That young man looked very familiar in the face.

    “What the heck?”, remarked Bak Tin Kiew casting a quick glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    “What?”, replied Yeung Yin Siu in shock. The handsome did look very familiar to him. But he could not for the time being guess who he was.

    “Big brother Yeung, if you weren’t standing to the side of me at this moment, I could have sworn that the handsome young man in black robes who has just ran pass here was none other than you! He looked just like you before you grew that beard of yours!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew with a stunned look on her face.

    “What? Don’t be ridiculous!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    But before he had a chance to respond, around 50 Beggar Clan members hotly pursued after the handsome young man in black robes. They were shouting as they gave chase, “Fisherman Ho! You scoundrel! You’ve stolen our jade beating dog stick and murdered Beggar Hung!”.

    “Why are they crying out my name? And who’s that handsome young man?”, Yeung Yin Siu couldn’t help but think to himself.

    At this moment one of the District Commanders of the Beggar Clan approached Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu. Holding up his stick in the air, he shouted, “What are you two lazy bums doing? Fisherman Ho has just murdered our Deputy Chief, Beggar Hung! Aren’t the two of you going to help?”.

    Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself, “This is really bizarre!”.

    “Why should we help?”, Bak Tin Kiew could be heard asking to the side.

    Looking very disturbed and greatly annoyed, the District Commander replied, “Humph, I suppose the two of are nothing but cowards. Just because Beggar Hung has died, you’re not going to admit that you’re members of the ‘Dirty’ Beggar Faction now is that it! Well you can join those ‘Clean’ Beggar Faction if you like! Who needs you!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was slightly startled and amused at the same time. The District Commander had mistaken them to be members of the Beggar Clan because of the torn and dirty clothes they had been wearing. He wanted to figure out what was going on, before moving on. Clearing his voice he said, “Of course we’ll help! We’re right behind you!”.

    Moments later the District Commander disappeared. Glancing across at Yeung Yin Siu, Bak Tin Kiew asked, “Why did you offer to help. Shouldn’t we be going to Kaifeng?”.

    “Not yet! I want to see what’s going on first!” replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst grabbing onto Bak Tin Kiew’s hands. Moments later they disappeared out of sight and chased after the handsome young man in black robes along with the rest of the Beggar Clan members.

    End of Chapter 12.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

  11. #51
    Senior Member HookOnRice's Avatar
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    Great Update!!!

    Your writing is superb.

  12. #52
    Junior Member Quantum's Avatar
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    Wow a great update indeed.
    I really can't wait to find out what happens next
    I just hope you'll update soon Long.

    Hmm, so much has happen in 2 months...... I wonder why people would want to impersonate Yueng.
    The plot thickes i guess I can't wait to find out.
    To live life like a dream is rare. To let it happen in reality is even more rare.

  13. #53
    Senior Member Long's Avatar
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    Default Chapter 13: Mysterious Events

    Chapter 13: Mysterious Events

    The breeze is gently blowing on the outskirts of Hennan around an hour walk from the main city centre. There is an open field full of lush green grass on either side of a dirt track. A large herd of cattle and sheep could been seen grazing on the grass tended by a small farm boy. A small river of crystal clear water runs through the field of corn before intersecting the small dirt track in the distance ahead. A small bridge made up of long yellow bamboo sticks rests above the bank of the river, allowing travellers to cross it from the small dirt track leading them into a dark forest full of tall and skinny green bamboo trees. From a distance one could see that a handsome young man in black robes was fast approaching the small bamboo bridge. He takes a quick glance over his shoulders before increasing his speed. Seconds later he arrives at the bridge. But his face seems to carry an uneasy disposition as he suddenly stops in his tracks. Sweat starts forming on his forehead as he hesitates to cross over the bridge before him. Turning around he could see in the distance around 50 men wearing torn and weathered grey robes pursuing after him. They were getting closer and closer. Yet the handsome young man in black robes decides not cross the bridge.

    Glancing nervously at the writing carved into a large grey rock by the side of the river, he reads the words out loud, “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring”.

    Suddenly the handsome young man in black robes decides to turn around and stood in an attacking position holding onto the jade bamboo stick with his hands out stretched. He did not fear seem to fear the abilities of the 50 men pursuing after him. But he did appear to fear the opponent before him. So he chose not to enter the bamboo forest, deciding to take his chances with the men pursuing after him. Not long after the 50 men pursuing the young man in black robes caught up before standing 10 paces away. They immediately surrounded him and made sure that they blocked off all possible escape routes.

    A tall and well-built man in his late 60s decided to step forward from the crowd. One could notice that there were 9 bags stitched to the right hand side of his torn grey robes. He was obviously a District Commander of the Beggar Clan. He carried a short dog beating stick in his right hand. His eyes were sharp like that of a hawk. His face was red as he appeared to be in a little bit of a rage.

    Speaking in a loud booming voice he said, “Fisherman Ho! You’ve murdered our Deputy Chief, Beggar Hung and have stolen his jade bamboo stick! Give yourself up now! You have no where else to go!”.

    “Beggar Jong! You want me to give myself up? You’ve got to be joking! I’ve never thought of that!”, replied the handsome young man in black robes as he charged forward to attack the Beggar Clan members.

    “What a devil! Attack!”, shouted Beggar Jong as he waved his stick in the air. He leapt backwards to stand 5 paces away to direct the formation.

    Thirty-six of the Beggar Clan members stepped forward and formed the ‘Capturing the Wild Dog’ formation. It was a formation designed to capture an elite fighter without harming them. It was not intended to kill. The purpose of the formation is to seal all of the opponent’s pressure points before trapping them with their short dog hitting sticks.

    “Beggar Jong! Watch carefully! It’ll be the last time you’ll see this move!”, shouted the handsome young man in black robes in a very arrogant tone. Suddenly he twisted his body and spun in 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane.

    The force created by the chi energy knocked most of the Beggar Clan members off their feet. This indicated that even at such a young age the handsome young man in black robes possessed a high level of inner energy. Before any of the Beggar Clan members had a chance to respond, the handsome young man had already reached into his pockets. He grabbed a number of tiny silver needle projectiles before shooting them out towards the Beggar Clan members whilst still spinning in a 360 degree cycle. His projectile throwing technique was very precise and accurate.

    Moments later all of the 50 Beggar Clan members cried out, “Ah Ya!”, upon feeling a burning sensation in their eyes. Blood began pouring from both eye sockets before flowing down onto their face and neck. They were struggling to stand up right against the powerful force of the black hurricane, and thus they could not use their sticks to block the projectiles launched at them. Furthermore they had only intended to capture the handsome young man in black robes for questioning and not really want to kill him. So they were slightly caught off guard They could have never guess that the handsome young man in black robes would have been so ruthless towards them. He displayed no mercy what so ever.

    The 50 odd Beggar Clan members now rolled along the ground as the screamed in pain whilst holding their eyes. They could now only see darkness and gasped out in panic, “What a devil! What a devil!”.

    The majority of Beggar Clan members expected death moments later upon realising that they had been defeated. But the handsome young man in black robes did not take any action against them. Instead he stood there and laughed out loud. He said, “Ha! Ha! Who would have thought the Beggar Clan is so useless!”.

    Waving the jade dog beating stick about, he continued, “The jade dog beating stick is now mine! I heard a rule in the Beggar Clan that the person who holds the jade bamboo stick in hand is the Chief. So I guess I’m now your new Chief! Anyone who can defeat me can claim the leadership and the jade dog beating stick back! But until then, anyone who dares to defy my orders will suffer the same fate as everyone here today!”.

    Pointing the jade do beating stick forward in triumph he said, “Now get your miserable faces from my sight! I want all of you to spread the news throughout both the ‘Dirty’ and the ‘Clean’ Beggar Faction, that I Fisherman Ho am now the new Chief of the Beggar Clan! I will therefore attend and represent the Beggar Clan at the forum held at Shaloin in a few weeks time to discuss the position of Chancellor of Wulin!”.

    The 50 odd Beggar Clan members did not respond. They just kept rolling on the ground whilst crying out loud, “My eyes! My eyes! You bastard! You’ve blinded me!”.

    The handsome young man just kept on smiling. He stopped smiling upon turning around and taking a glance at the green bamboo forest behind him. Moments later he motioned to utilise his lightness kung fu in an attempt to dash off. It appeared for some reason that the handsome young man in black robes had wanted to get as far away from the “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring” as possible after his triumph.

    “Hold it! You’re not going anywhere!”, shouted an old bearded man wearing torn and weathered black robes as he approached the bridge. He carried only a long and thick stick in his right hand.

    Moments later a young girl wearing a white facemask and a torn and weathered green dress rushed up by his side. She was carrying a long white sword in her right hand.

    Looking a little puzzled as to the identities of the two people before him, the handsome young man in black robes shouted in an arrogant tone, “Who the heck are you two? How dare you interfere in Fisherman Ho’s business? You must be tired of living!”,

    Stepping forward the old beared man said, “Who am I? I should be asking you that question instead! Fisherman Ho’s business is my business! Therefore I must interfere!”.

    Pointing his old stick forward the old beared man demanded, “Who the heck are you? Speak!”.

    Smiling proudly the handsome young man in black robes said in a very arrogant tone, “You want to know who I am? If you can defeat me! Then I’ll tell you! But you’ll never have the opportunity!”.

    With that the handsome young man in black robes twisted his body and spun in 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane once more in an attempt to knock both of his opponents off their feet. He was successful against the young girl in green wearing a white mask. Such was the force being generated by the handsome young man in black robes that she immediately fell on her backside and struggled to get up.

    The old beared man stood with his arms folded. His hair was blowing wildly in the hurricane created by the chi energy from the handsome young man in black robes. Walking forward he said in a mocking tone, “Young man, you’re indeed very talented! When it’s summer my house often gets very hot! I wonder whether you’d be kind enough to come over during the hot summer days to create this small hurricane to relieve me from all of the hot air. You’d be a great human fan!”.

    “Why you…”, shouted the handsome young man in black robes, clearly not impressed by the old bearded man’s comments.

    The handsome young man in black robes suddenly stoped spinning in endless cycles. He immediately stepped forward and striked out with the jade bamboo stick aiming for the mid stomach of the old bearded man. Suddenly the old bearded man appeared to have twisted his body right. The he suddenly appeared in front of the handsome young man in black robe’s face before twisting left and then right again. It happened so fast that it appeared as if the old bearded man had suddenly separated into three people. The handsome young man in black robes became frozen on the spot as he watched the stances carefully unfolding before his eyes. His attack striked nothing but air despite having appeared to slash through the mid stomach region of the image of the old bearded man before him.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried the handsome young man in black robes moments later. He had been struck three times on the right hand. It suddenly felt numb as he lost all of the strength and immediately dropped the jade bamboo stick onto the floor.

    A little bit of fear gripped the handsome young man in black robes at this moment as he mumbled, “Who… Who… Who on earth are you? There’re… They’re… They’re very few people in wulin capable of defeating me!”.

    “Who I am is not important! But you’re very much mistaken about your abilities! You’re skills aren’t even a match for the top 50 fighters in all of wulin!”, remarked bearded old man as he picked the jade bamboo stick off the floor before passing it over to the young lady in green for safe keeping.

    Pointing his stick forward, the old bearded man suddenly demanded, “Well I’ve defeated you! Now it’s time for you to tell me who you are? Please tell me now!”.

    The handsome young man in black robes did not reply. He was looking rather dejected at having just been beaten so easily by the old bearded man. He did not even last one stance of the old bearded man’s unique sword arts and yet he was able to defeat 50 Beggar Clan members so easily.

    Hearing no response, the old bearded man continued whilst pointing his long stick forward towards the handsome young man in black robe’s Adam’s apple pressure point, “Well who the heck are you? Speak now! Or die!”.

    “I’m…”, replied the handsome young man in black robes before stopping short. A number of swishing sound suddenly echoed through the air as a sea of tiny shiny metal objects had been launched towards the old bearded man, and the young lady in green.

    “What the heck! How shameful! Ambushing one from behind!”, cursed the old bearded man as he dodged from left to right before blocking most of the projectiles launched at him.

    Looking up he noticed that the young girl in green had been able to defend herself from the surprise attack. A smile flashed across his face upon seeing this. But he was caught by total surprise upon seeing that a number of projectiles had also been launched at the handsome young man in black robes. The old bearded man had initially thought that the handsome young man in black robes and the men who had just ambushed them were in league with each other. But it was now obvious that they were not.

    “What on earth is going on? Who’s that handsome young man in black robes? Who are these people now launching an ambush attack at us?”, thought the old bearded as he continued using the long stick to block the incoming projectiles.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried some of the Beggar Clan members who had been crawling on the ground. They had just been blinded and so could not tell the direction in which the projectiles were coming from. Many of them were struck by a projectile as a result as they could not dodge from the ambush attack.

    The handsome young man in black robes was more than capable of dodging all of the projectiles launched in the air. Suddenly he launched a palm attack and managed to catch the young girl in green off guard. He had struck her on the right shoulder before recovering the jade bamboo stick in his hands. Moments later the handsome young man in black robes utilised his lightness kung fu and rushed off into the distance. Around six masked man wearing black robes and a black mask suddenly appeared in view before pursuing after the handsome young man in black robes. The young girl picked herself off from the ground clutching onto her right shoulder. She wasn’t seriously injured, but was suffering a little shocked at having been struck by a palm.

    The old bearded man was going to chase after the handsome young man in black robes, but he was stopped in his tracks once more as a number of projectiles were launched against him from behind. By the time he had blocked all of the projectiles launched against him, the handsome young man in black robes and the many masked men pursuing after him had disappeared from sight.

    Half of the 50 Beggar Clan members crawling along the ground had now been struck by a projectile and died instantly. It was a sign that the projectiles launched at them contained some deadly poison. All that could be heard at this moment in time was the remaining 25 Beggar Clan members still crawling around the ground crying out in pain, “My eyes! My eyes! I can’t believe I’m blind! That bastard!”.

    Suddenly it became quite. The projectiles being launched in the air had ceased. It appeared as if the various people who had surrounded the old bearded man and the young girl in green had taken off and retreated. But the old bearded man remained cautious and did not put his guard down. He was sure there were still various men hiding around the scrubs to the side of the bamboo forest waiting to ambush them. Turning left and right he listened in closely to detect possible sounds of danger. Suddenly he heard some faint rustling from the bushes behind him. The old bearded man immediately leapt forward in that direction with his long stick pointed forwards in an attacking position. He saw a medium built man wearing a black robe and a plain black mask rushing away. He appeared to be like a black shadow as he ran. It looked very much like the lightness kung fu of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins.

    “Gwai Mo Ming?”, thought the old bearded man to himself as he pursued after the masked man.

    He could now hear someone yelling from behind him, “Wait for me!”. It was the voice of the young girl in green as she pursued after them. But her voice was now some distance away. In indication that the masked man and the old bearded man possessed some exceptional lightness kung fu. They had travelled a great distance in a short space of time.

    “The masked man is indeed an elite fighter!”, though the old bearded man as he gave chase.

    Turning his attention back to the young girl in green, the old bearded man frantically shouted back in a booming voice, “No! Stay where you are! Don’t leave the blind Beggar Clan members! Protect them and make sure they’re safe from harm! We’ll need them alive to find out what happened here!”.

    “Okay!”, shouted the young girl in green as she turned to rush back to the bamboo bridge.

    Moments later the old bearded man could hear the frantic clashing of swords back at the bamboo bridge. It was followed by loud cries and shrieks seconds later. It appeared as if a number of men had suddenly been butchered to death. He thought inwardly, “Dam! The ‘tiger mountain trick’. That masked man was only luring me away!”.

    Giving it no further thought he immediately rushed back to help the young girl in green. He knew that her abilities were far lower than the men who had launched the ambush attack at the Beggar Clan members. Upon returning to the scene he heard the young girl in green could be heard crying out in pain, “Ah Ya!”. A man wearing black robes and a black mask had just hit her with a palm across the left shoulder.

    There were actually ten masked men now surrounding the young girl in green. Moments later the masked man that had struck the young girl in green immediately utilises his lightness kung fu. He took off upon seeing that the old bearded man had returned. The other 9 masked men followed him closely behind. The old bearded man attempted to give chase. But he was met with a sea of tiny little projectiles being launched at him and the young girl in green. Seeing the urgent situation, he rushed up to grab the young girl in green by the hands, before jumping into the small river below the bamboo bridge. The tiny projectiles narrowly missed them both.

    “Brother Yeung! I’m glad you’ve returned! I was so scared!”, remarked the young girl in green as she leant forward to give the old bearded man a firm hug.

    “Eh! Kiew yee, I’m glad you’re safe! I should have never left you alone!”, replied the old bearded man holding onto the young girl in green.

    It was now obvious underneath the clear daylight that the old bearded man was none other than Yeung Yin Siu, and the young girl in green was none other than Bak Tin Kiew. They had spent the past hour slowly pursuing after the handsome man in black robes. They had done this deliberately, as they wanted to see what the intentions of that handsome young man had been, and why he had impersonated Fisherman Ho. But they could never have guessed that he would have been so ruthless. So they managed to arrive too late to help the Beggar Clan members.

    Moments later Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew leapt back up onto the small bamboo bridge. Picking up a small projectile before placing it under his nose to smell it, Yeung Yin Siu, suddenly remarked, “Black widow poison!”.

    “What? Isn’t she dead?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew in amazement.

    “The Black Widow Assassin is definitely dead! But someone has managed to obtain her deadly poisons formula and managed to recreate the poison!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a look of concern on his face. He knew the black widow poison was virtually incurable. Only the black scorpion poison can cancel out the effects of the black widow poison. But according to Mischievous Monk there are many side effects involved as a result of that cancelling process.

    “Big brother Yeung, I suspect this group of masked men must have been at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult! Or they must be somehow connected to the Demon Cult!”, remarked Bak Tin Kiew picking up a needle off the ground to smell it herself.

    Nodding his head in agreement, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “Yes, it’s certain that those men attended the annual general meeting! But they may not necessarily be Demon Cult members! They could have just infiltrated the Demon Cult on that particular day!”.

    “Or they could be members from the…”, continued Yeung Yin Siu before stopping short. He remembered the lightness kung fu being utilised by the masked man and the handsome young man in black robes. He became very concerned.

    “What? Which other clan do you suspect these men to be from?”, questioned Bak Tin Kiew with a curious look on her face.

    “Nothing!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst shaking his head. He was going to say, “13 Ghost Mountain Assassins”, but he still didn’t believe in his heart that they could be capable of doing such an act. Nor did he believe that they harbour ambitions of world domination.

    Yeung Yin Siu had grown up under the teachings and wisdom of the Black Bat Assassin. So deep in his heart he knew that members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins were not really that evil at heart. Many of them just had unfortunate lives and thus resorted to becoming assassins to kill for money. It was the only way they knew how to survive. There was a rumour throughout wulin that said, “Just for money! Members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins would even kill their own parents, relatives, and close friends!”. But Yeung Yin Siu knew this was far from the truth. Besides many of the members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins were orphans and had no relatives, and the few friends they had were each other.

    Turning around he decided to ask, “Kiew yee, did you see who removed the Black Widow Assassin’s body from the duelling pit after she was slained by Rain? I was duelling in the next round and did not see what happened?”.

    “No!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew casting an uneasy glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    She gave a long sigh before continuing, “I was too concerned about your safety that I did not pay any attention to what had happened to the Black Widow Assassin!”.

    Giving a long sigh, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Only one person will know for certain who removed the Black Widow Assassin’s body from the duelling pit!”.

    “Who’s that?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in a curious voice.

    “The Chancellor of the Demon Cult herself! Only Tit Yum Ching would know for sure!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he walked over to examine the dead bodies of over 50 Beggar Clan members. The masked men had slained them all and left none alive.

    “Tit Yum Ching? You… You… You want to see her?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew in a low voice. Her heart suddenly ached a little.

    Not realising that Bak Tin Kiew was a little troubled, Yeung Yin Siu replied in an enthusiastic voice, “Yes! I’m going to arrange a meeting with her tonight when we head back to the Golden Dragon Inn! Besides, I have to return the Iron Blood sword and the Iron Blood arts to her sooner or later!”.

    Bak Tin Kiew did not respond. She kepted silent as she examined some of the dead bodies herself. Being a little inexperienced in wulin, she could not find any clues as to who had ambushed them.

    Hearing no response, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Besides I need to see her for another reason!”.

    “What else do you want to see her about?”, becoming slightly intrigued asked Bak Tin Kiew.

    “I must confront her about something!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu sounding a little uneasy as he remembered the handsome young man in black robes who had impersonated him. He was a no namer in wulin and could not think of the reason, for the time being, as to why anyone would want to impersonate him. So he suspected it had something to do with Tit Yum Ching.

    Not knowing what was on Yeung Yin Siu’s mind at the moment, Bak Tin Kiew asked, “What is it big brother Yeung? You look a little worried!”.

    Seeing the concerned expression on Bak Tin Kiew’s face, Yeung Yin Siu decided to keep what was on his mind a secret. He said whilst grabbing hold of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands, “Oh! It’s really nothing! I just wanted to ask whether she has seen my auntie or uncle that’s all!”.

    “Big brother Yeung! Is that really all you want to discuss with Tit Yum Ching?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew. She was not totally convinced that what Yeung Yin Siu had told her was the truth.

    Yeung Yin Siu did not respond. Letting go of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands he started to examine the injuries on one of the deceased Beggar Clan members on the ground. He remarked, “Interesting! Why would a Beggar Clan member ambush members from his own clan! This is really weird!”.

    “How can you tell that it was a Beggar Clan member who killed this person?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew as she stood over the body to have a closer look.

    Lifting the grey robe away from the right abdomen region to expose the wounds so that Bak Tin Kiew could see. Yeung Yin Siu continued, “See this slash across the right abdomen region! It is not a clean slice like that of created by a sword or a sabre. It is not smooth like that of a wound created by a staff or any other symmetrical weapon! Only a weapon with very rough, jagged, and inconsistent edges are able to create this kind of messy wound! It leads me to conclude that these wounds have been created by the short beating sticks of a Beggar Clan member!”.

    Bak Tin Kiew’s face suddenly turned pale upon seeing the wound on the Beggar Clan member’s body. Her eyes then filled with rage, as emotions of anger over took fear. She cried, “I’ve seen these wounds before as well. It’s similar to one of the wounds on my mother’s deceased body!”.

    “Then it’s certain then that a member from the Beggar Clan participated in murdering your mother!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he placed a hand on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulder to calm her down.

    “Did you manage to see the weapons being wielded by the other masked men who attacked you when I was gone?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu as he went to examine the other bodies on the ground.

    Shaking her head left and right, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “No. I was too focused on defending myself from the attacks launched by the masked man in front of me!”.

    “Well what weapon was that man wielding?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu as he tried to find more clues as to the identities of the other masked men who had just attacked them.

    Searching deep in her mind, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “He was wielding a standard long broad sword!”.

    “Broad sword? What was carved onto the hilt of the sword? Did you see it?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu. Indeed most of the wounds on the remaining bodies were thin and deep cuts, confirming that the standard broad sword created them. Many clans in wulin used this kind of weapon including the Wudang Sect. So it would be difficult to guess the exact clan of the men who attacked them just from these kinds of wounds.

    Shaking her head once more, Bak Tin Kiew remarked, “No. I didn’t manage to see what was carved into the hilt of the sword!”.

    “Then the only real lead we have is that some members of the Beggar Clan had participated in this ambush attack on their own clan members!”, sighed Yeung Yin Siu. He had wanted to uncover much more information. Also, he was greatly disturbed and totally shocked as to why someone would want to impersonate him to create trouble throughout wulin.

    “Big brother Yeung, wait! Come here!”, said Bak Tin Kiew as she looked around to make sure that no one was hiding nearby. She then took off her green top before holding it in her right hand. Moments later she untied her white undergarment to expose her shoulder blade. One could see that she was wearing a yellow brassier underneath, showing off her soft curves and elegant curves.

    “Eh! Kiew yee, what on earth are you doing?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in shock upon seeing that Bak Tin Kiew had partially undressed herself.

    Letting out a little shy laugh, Bak Tin Kiew said, “It’s not what you think! Two palms struck me earlier! I thought that you may be able to recognise these wounds!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu walked up to Bak Tin Kiew to observe the wounds and bruises on the right and left shoulder. But his eyes couldn’t help but wonder occasionally from the shoulder blade across the chest from time to time. There was a big black bruise on Bak Tin Kiew’s left shoulder. But that was to be expected given the force of the strike. But there was nothing unusual about the palm technique or clues left behind that would enable one to guess the identity of the masked man who had executed that palm strike.

    “The Iron Palms? Or could it be the Iron Blood Palms?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought out aloud upon seeing the red palm mark on Bak Tin Kiew’s right shoulders.

    “You recognise them? Then who do you suspect that handsome young man in black robes to be?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew upon hearing Yeung Yin Siu’s thoughts.

    Yeung Yin Siu remained silent for a while. It was obvious who one of the likely suspects were. He replied, “There are only a couple of people in wulin who come to mind with the palm techniques capable of leaving this kind of red mark behind on a human body! They are the Iron Palms of the of the ‘Mo Yung’ family and the Iron Blood Palms of the ‘Tit’ family!”.

    “Tit family? Do you suspect that Tit Yum Ching is somehow connected to the person who impersonated you? I thought the two of you were very good friends!”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in shock.

    “Eh! Tin Kiew, you don’t know that much. The Chancellor only makes friends with the people who can assist her. Also I’m not totally certain that she’s behind all of this! I don’t know whether she or any other Demon Cult member, for that matter, has that level of skill in the Iron Blood Palms! It has also been executed differently to the palm technique that I have copied from the cave! So it may not be the Iron Blood Palms after all!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He did not believe in his heart that Tit Yum Ching would do something to harm his reputation.

    Another thought crossed Yeung Yin Siu’s mind, as he remembered that the ‘5 Elements’ have recently been named as the 5 Guardians of the Demon Cult. Amongst this group of elite fighters was a person by the name of Yellow Air who is renowned as the master ‘shape changer’. It was rumoured throughout wulin that Yellow Air could fold air and bend sunlight to create an illusion. Yellow Air could thus assume any form or impersonate anyone in wulin. No one actually knew whether Yellow Air was a man or woman, such was the level of that persons skills in disguise. All Yellow Air had do to in order to impersonate someone was to look at them to observe their facial features.

    “Why would she want to harm my reputation?”, Yeung Yin Siu suddenly thought to himself as he suddenly felt very uneasy. He was certain that he had guessed correctly. Besides, Yellow Air had seen him at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult.

    Yeung Yin Siu stood deep in thought. His head dropped down slightly and it appeared as if he was now starring directly at Bak Tin Kiew’s chest. But he was actually searching through his mind about all the possible reasons as to why Tit Yum Ching would want to harm his reputation. But he could not come up with one for the time being. He had another thought, “Perhaps its Mo Yung Bak!”.

    Pulling her white undergarment above her shoulders, before dressing herself again, Bak Tin Kiew shouted, “Big brother Yeung, that’s very naughty! What do you think you’re doing? Keep your eyes up where I can see them!”.

    But Yeung Yin Siu did not reply for a long while. He was still lost in thought. Snapping out of his daze before looking up he said, “Eh! Tin Kiew, did you just saying something?”.

    Bak Tin Kiew was just about to respond when she heard the voice of a young girl saying in a very mocking tone, “Who’s the naughty one? Undressing themselves in front of a man in broad daylight! You are the one who should be ashamed of yourself!”.

    Turning around to the source of the voice, Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu suddenly noticed a tiny little girl around the age of 7-8 years of age standing behind them. She was wearing a light grey dress with white trimmings. Her hair had been tied into two piggy tails to the side. A big smile emerged on her face making her look rather cute and adorable.

    “I wonder how long she’s been standing here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly. He was rather shocked at having been unable to detect that someone had approached them. He was an experienced fighter and so should have not been caught off guard so easily as he had just been. What’s more by a 7-8 year old girl. He was rather bemused by this. Bak Tin Kiew on the other hand turned a little red upon hearing the young girl’s comments.

    Looking at the large grey rock towards the side of the bamboo bridge for the first time, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed the words carved into the surface. He thought inwardly, “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring! So this is the home of Du Gum Lin, sister of the great Calligraphy Swordsman! No wonder that handsome man in black robes feared going into the forest to escape! None that have entered the forest have come out alive!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was now studying the young girl very carefully. She had seen the various dead bodies on the ground and yet showed no signs of fear. This was very rare indeed. He thought, “Surely this young girl is not Du Gum Lin!”.

    Hearing no response the young girl continued whilst giggling, “You two have better leave! This is no place for secret romances! But I suggest that you both get married before doing anything else !”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to ask the young girl for her name, when someone approached the bridge from the dirt path. He said, “Eh! Ah Sing! Don’t be so rude! I’ve already told you not to make assumptions about people before finding out the truth about who they are and what they are doing first! Then perhaps you’ll understand what this young girl had been doing! It may not necessarily be rude as you may think it to be!”.

    “Also you don’t know whether they’ve actually already married or not! Yet you’ve suggested that they get married before they do anything else! True that your assumptions may prove correct! However by assuming you’ve already labelled and pre-judged a total stranger without even knowing the entire truth! How can you do that? That’s really bad! Haven’t you learnt anything that I’ve taught you for the past 4 years? Judge people on not what you hear! Judge people only on what you know!”, sighed the man in grey robes as he approached Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew.

    One could now see that the man who approached them appeared to be around 27 years of age. A clean grey robe with white trimmings covered his medium built body. His hair was tied neatly at the back with a white scarf. He a had a thin but very handsome face and appeared to be a well-educated man. He was carrying a large bamboo pen in his left hand and a long green bamboo stick in his right hand. A large rectangle bamboo basket had been swung over his shoulders. One could see that it contained a number of scrolls. Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this man as the grey swordsman he had been drinking with in his dreams.

    “Sorry master! I didn’t mean to pre-judge but…”, replied the young girl named Ah Sing as she rushed up to stand besides the man in grey robes.

    Tugging her master by the robe she continued, “Master! Sister Gum Lin is not in at the moment! Her servants suggested that you wait here for her to return! They will not allow us to enter! They were being quite rude to me also!”.

    “Why is she being so secretive at the moment? Even I have to wait here for her to return? You’ve got to be kidding! I’m her elder brother! This is most unlike her!”, remarked the man in grey robes with a worried look on his face. But he knew the temper of his younger sister well. So he gave a sigh and stood where he was.

    Looking around he noticed the many deceased bodies of the Beggar Clan members laying on the ground. Turning to face Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew, he said whilst cupping his hands together, “My name is Du Fu! May I have the pleasure of knowing your names and what business brings you to the Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring! Do you have business with my sister?”.

    Stepping forward and cupping his hands together, Yeung Yin Siu introduced himself, “A pleasure to meet you! Your sword arts are famed in the Central regions of China! My surname is ‘Ho’ and first names are ‘Yin Siu’!”.

    Glancing across at Yeung Yin Siu, Bak Tin Kiew thought, “Why does big brother Yeung persist with using the name Ho Yin Siu? Isn’t he afraid that the imposter has already ruined his image?”.

    “My surname is ‘Lok’ and first names are ‘Tin Kiew’!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew whilst cupping her hands. She was still using an alias name.

    “Ho Yin Siu?”, remarked Du Fu out loud to himself. This name did indeed sound very familiar to him. But he did not immediately remember where he had heard of the name.

    “You mean you’re Fisherman Ho?”, shouted Du Fu as he leapt back and drew his green bamboo stick and long bamboo pen in an attacking position.

    “Wait! Please let me explain!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he raised his right hand in an urgent rush.

    “Okay! I’m listening!”, replied Du Fu as he lowered his weapons. He had just given a big lecture to his young apprentice about making assumptions before knowing the entire truth. So he wasn’t about to act rashly and attack without first hearing the other side of the story from the man claiming to be Fisherman Ho. Along his journey he had heard a number of vicious rumours about Fisherman Ho that spread like wild fire. Fisherman Ho’s reputation was now in taters. Most of the shallow people in wulin believed them to be true without finding the truth out for themselves. But Du Fu was by no means a shallow person.

    Moments later Yeung Yin Siu explained in detail the events that had just taken place at the yellow bamboo bridge. He had also explained how he and Bak Tin Kiew had been trapped down a small cave on the outskirts of Hennan for the past two months. He left out the bits about him attending the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult. He also decided not to tell Du Fu about his own guesses about who he thought the handsome young man in black robes, and the masked man who had ambushed them had been. He was interested to hear Du Fu’s own guesses. Du Fu went over and examined all of the 50 deceased bodies on the ground. Moments later, Yeung Yin Siu described the wounds he had just seen on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulder blades to him.

    “Ah Sing! See! What did you learn today? These two weren’t doing anything rude! Nor did they have any romantic thoughts in mind! This young gentleman was just examining the wounds on his friend!”, remarked Du Fu upon hearing the end of Yeung Yin Siu’s story, whilst looking across at his young apprentice. One could tell that Du Fu was greatly troubled by the events. He remained deep in thought.

    “What should we do with these stinky bodies? We can’t leave them here otherwise Sister Gum Lin will get upset!”, interrupted Ah Sing whilst pointing over to all of the deceased bodies.

    “Ah Sing! I want you to go into the city of Hennan and find Rule Elder Beggar Lau! Lead him back here. Tell him these bodies will need to be delivered as evidence in time for the urgent summit at Shaolin!”, replied Du Fu.

    Ah Sing nodded her head and immediately disappeared from sight. One could see that she possessed excellent lightness kung fu, even for someone at such a young age.

    “Urgent summit at Shaolin? What’s happening there?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in shock. She had never heard about this summit before. But she knew that her father normally resides over all wulin matters on behalf of all of the orthodox clans. Most summits were held at Taishan and no Shaolin. So she wanted to know what the summit was about.

    “You two have been trapped down in a cave for two months! So no wonder you don’t know about the urgent summit held at Shaolin!”, remarked Du Fu.

    Giving a long sigh, Du Fu continued, “The Chiefs, and Clan Leaders of all the orthodox clans have written a letter to Reverend Guy Jang the current Abbot of Shaolin indicating a total loss of confidence in the leadership of Bak Fung Wan! They wish to remove him from the post of Chancellor of Wulin! This is what is being discussed at the summit! Rumours have it that the Chancellor of Wulin received a personal invitation to discuss this matter with Reverend Guy Jang around 6 months ago, but decided to decline the offer! So Shaolin had no other option than to call this urgent summit! Apparently Bak Fung Wan has already left Taishan and is making his way towards Shaolin to meet one on one with Reverend Guy Jang!”.

    “Ah! So father is still alive and well!”, thought Bak Tin Kiew with a sigh of relief upon hearing the news.

    “Removing the current Chancellor of Wulin from his current post? On what grounds?”, interrupted Yeung Yin Siu.

    Turning to face Yeung Yin Siu, Du Fu replied, “There are a number of reasons. The Head Master of the Huashan Sect has sighted the Chancellor’s inability many years ago to lead the orthodox clans to kill the Black Dragon Swordsman. His apparent return has shaken wulin with fear. Many innocent lives have died at the edge of his black dragon blade since his return. The Head Master of Huashan has had enough and seeks a resolution to this problem!”.

    Pausing for a while, Du Fu continued, “The Head Master of the Songshan Sect was angered upon receiving a letter warning him to stop the bloodshed between the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect. He was said to have written a letter to the Reverend Guy Jang accusing Bak Fung Wan of stealing the Frost Palms and Frost Sword kung fu manuals. He wishes Bak Fung Wan to return those kung fu manuals over to him! Also the Head Master of the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect have written a letter complaining against Bak Fung Wan’s conduct and handling of the situation! The Head Master of the Emei Sect and the Divine Butterfly Sect have also complained against Bak Fung Wan’s conduct!”.

    “Oh!”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew upon hearing this. She thought her father’s plan in dealing with the Songshan Sect and the Emei Sect had in fact been a good idea. Who would have thought that the various Head Master’s would then gang up on her father.

    Casting a curious glance at Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu continued, “Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan, Beggar Hung from the Dirty Faction had also written in a letter accusing Bak Fung Wan of recognising him as the rightful Chief of the Beggar Clan. The other Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan, Beggar Fong from the Clean Faction has complained about the same thing! Both Beggar Hung and Beggar Fong now seeks a resolution to this situation at the summit. Now Beggar Hung has been murdered and the jade bamboo stick has gone missing! It can only make matters worse for Bak Fung Wan come the summit at Shaolin!”.

    Giving a long sigh once again, Du Fu continued, “Finally there’s the matter of Fisherman Ho who Bak Fung Wan has failed to take any action against! Apparently in the last two months, Fisherman Ho has murdered the Head Master of the Lion Prestige Escort! The 3rd senior apprentice brother Wan Bong San is now their current Chief. The Head Master of the Emei Sect and the Head Master of the Kunlun Sect has also been murdered! And now Beggar Hung!”.

    Turning to look Du Fu in the eye, Yeung Yin Siu asked, “Do you believe that I’m capable of committing such cruel and ruthless crimes? Or do you think I’m innocent?”.

    Smiling Du Fu replied, “Of course I believe you’re innocent!”.

    “Oh! Why is that?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in a curious tone as a smile flashed across his face.

    “Because I passed by a handsome young man in black robes when I was heading this way! But I did not really pay that much attention to him! It is only now that I realise he must have been the same person as the one you’ve just described to me!”, replied Du Fu. Earlier he had been in such a rush to meet up with his sister that he did not really take much notice when he saw a man in black robes going in the opposite direction at a rapid rate. All he managed to do was take a quick glance at him.

    “But he was no longer carrying the jade bamboo stick! So he must either have lost it, hidden it, or given it to someone else”, remarked Du Fu.

    “Given it to someone else? Do you suspect that the handsome young man in black robes is working for someone?”, questioned Yeung Yin Siu, wanting to hear Du Fu’s guesses.

    A big grin emerged on Du Fu’s face as he continued, “You mentioned that the handsome young man in black robes used his chi energy to create a large hurricane! There are few people in wulin with this ability! They include, the 5 Storms of the Demon Cult, Yellow Air, the ‘Mo Yung’ family, Sword Saint Unrivalled East, Sabre Saint Immortal West, Gentleman Sword, Chopstick Lee, myself and elite fighters from the Songshan Sect!”.

    “However the only people capable of leaving the red palm marks on a human body are, members from the Demon Cult and the Mo Yung family!”, continued Du Fu with a beaming grin. He was confident that he had been able to narrow the field down.

    “That I already know!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smile.

    “Excellent! Excellent! But there’s something else you may not know! There are few experts in wulin that are a master of disguise and can impersonate anyone they wish! One of them is the ‘shape changer’ Yellow Air of the Demon Cult. The other that comes to mind is Mo Yung Bak the 22 year old son of the ‘Mo Yung’ family! Both of them are only subordinates within their respectful clans! So obviously they were working for someone!”, concluded Du Fu with a beaming grin.

    “Mo Yung Bak! I’m going to make him pay for this!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu inwardly as he clenched his fists tightly. He refused to believe that Tit Yum Ching would do something to harm his reputation. So he figured it must have been an orthodox clan member looking to impersonate him to cause some trouble to get rid of Bak Fung Wan as the Chancellor of Wulin.

    “Who do you suppose Mo Yung Bak is working for then? Obviously Yellow Air would be working for the Chancellor of the Demon Cult!”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew whilst casting a glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    Shifting his glance to Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu continued, “That I have no idea! The ‘Mo Yung’ family have always been secretive about their allegiance! They are obviously on the side that’s most profitable to them!”.

    Looking at the dead bodies on the ground, Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “I’ve checked all of the deceased bodies. Some of them died from the black widow poison, others seemed to have struck by the short dog beating sticks of the Beggar Clan, and the others died from the broad sword!”.

    “Very good!”, replied Du Fu looking at Yeung Yin Siu in some awe. In his mind Du Fu had always considered himself to be the most intelligent person in wulin. He was pleasantly surprised that there was someone who was equal in intelligence.

    “Indeed you’re correct! Beggar Clan members have participated in this bloody murder along with the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins, Lion Prestige Escort, and the Kunlun Sect!”, continued Du Fu was pointing at the various bodies on the ground.

    “How do you know for certain that the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect were also involved?”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew whilst standing to the side.

    “I’m not 100% certain. However, even though all of these clean wounds have been created by the broad sword. The thin long wounds are created by the broad swords commonly wielded by members of the Kunlun Sect and the thicker and shorter wounds are created by those normally wielded by the Lion Prestige Escort!”, replied Du Fu. He was a an expert at the weaponry of the orthodox clans. Yeung Yin Siu wasn’t and thus was not able to distinguish between the cuts made by the broad swords.

    “Hmm! Someone has impersonated me of murdering the Head Masters of the Emei Sect, Kunlun Sect, and the Lion Prestige Escort! And there are masked men in those same sect pursuing after the imposter! I wonder if the two events are connected!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu out loud.

    “That is certain! But I’m only guessing here!”, replied Du Fu.

    But before they could discuss the matter any further four people arrived from the dirt track carrying a carriage. The four young ladies were dressed in green robes. They each carried a short bamboo stick by the right side of the waist. There appeared to be a young lady sitting in the carriage.

    “Young miss, there are a number of dead bodies along the bridge! There are three people standing before us! There’s a young scholar in grey robes, an old bearded man, and a young lady in a green dress!”, shouted one the ladies in green as she stopped in her tracks.

    “Brother is that you? Who are these people? Why are they here? What happened?”, the voice of a young lady could suddenly be heard asking. The tone of her voice was cold and chilling.

    “Sister it’s me Du Fu! I apologise at not having visited you in over two years! But I’m here now!”, replied Du Fu as he raced up to the carriage.

    Pointing a finger at Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu said, “Those two people are my friends! As to what happened here, I’ll tell you about it later!”.

    “Brother, enough. I don’t want to see any uninvited guests! You can tell your friends to leave immediately! You’re welcome of course. I’ll see you tonight”, interrupted the young lady in the carriage.

    “What are you waiting for? Proceed forward!”, continued the young lady giving orders to her servants.

    Moments later the carriage crossed over the yellow bamboo bridge before disappearing into the green bamboo forest. Du Fu immediately raced up to Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu. He said in an apologetic tone, “Please forgive my sister! She has a very bad temper! She doesn’t trust anyone who she does not personally know! I was going to invite both of you in for tea! But I am not the master of the house here!”.

    Putting a hand up in the air to indicate that he was not offended, Yeung Yin Siu said, “That’s okay! We have other business at hand in any case! Perhaps we’ll catch up for a drink another time!”.

    “Definitely!”, replied Du Fu cupping his hands together.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew was just about to walk off when Du Fu raced up to the side of them. He said, “I’ll also be heading to Shaolin in a weeks time to attend the summit as a member of the Wudang Sect! I’ll inform everyone that the Fisherman Ho who has been creating trouble for the past two months is nothing but an imposter!”.

    “Thank you for your good intentions! But I doubt that they will trust your word alone!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu giving a loud sigh.

    “What are you going to do then?”, questioned Du Fu in a curious voice.

    “My name will never be cleared until I capture the real imposter and get him to confess in front of all of the heroes that attend the summit at Shaolin!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Do you have a plan in mind?”, asked Du Fu.

    “Yes! The Mo Yung family have always pride themselves on defeating an opponent using their own skills and abilities against them! I’ll do the same! I’m not concerned about Yellow Air! I’ll find out sooner or later whether he has any part to play in this!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu in a very confident tone.

    “Goodbye! And wish you the best of luck! I’ll see you at Shaolin then!”, replied Du Fu before turning around. Moments later he disappeared into the green bamboo forest.

    “Goodbye!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew simultaneously before turning to leave. They were no longer worried about the deceased Beggar Clan members on the ground, as Du Fu had already made the necessary arrangements.

    Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu slowly made their way back to the city of Hennan hand in hand to admire the scenery and the country side. A street noodle vendor was set up underneath a tall old willow tree in a clearing near a small lake. It was no lunchtime and they were very hungry. Pulling over a seat, Yeung Yin Siu ordered two bowls of steamed black duck noodles. He took out a small blue bag before handing over a couple of coins to the street vendor. The street vendor returned moments later with two bowls in his hands.

    Picking up a pair of chopsticks, Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “Do you realise that this is the first time in 2 months that we have been able to eat something other than those dam stinky white fish!”.

    Smiling, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “You’re right! I never thought steamed black duck noodle would taste this good as she continued eating!”.

    Moments later they heard the frantic cries of “Help me! Please help me!”, in the distance as a pretty young girl ran towards the noodle street vending store. One could now see that she was being hotly pursued by a man wearing a bright golden robe with a green dragon embroided on the front riding on a white horse. Around 40 armoured men followed closely behind the rider as guards. Each of the men held a long spear in hand. It was obvious that the rider man was a relative of the current Emperor of China by the way he dressed.

    Not long after the pretty young girl reached the street vending store before calling out frantically, “Help! Please help me!”. But no one dared help her upon recognising the rider.

    Placing a hand on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulders, Yeung Yin Siu said, “Don’t go anywhere! I’ll be right back!”, before suddenly disappearing out of sight.

    By now the rider and his 40 guards had reached and surrounded the street noodle vending store. The customers tried their best to dash away, but the guards prevented them from doing so. Stepping forward the rider shouted whilst fixing a gaze at the young girl, “Ha! Ha! Ha! Do you really think that you alone can defy my orders? I’m related to the Emperor! I may therefore do as I wish! You’re all my loyal subjects!”.

    Waving a hand to his guards he continued, “Surround her! Since she kicked me earlier today! I’m going to rape her now in front of all these people! Hold her!”.

    Seeing that many of the people had tried to rush off, the rider said in a loud voice, “Sit back down! Anyone who tries to leave will die! You’re all going to witness what happens to a young lady who doesn’t listen to my orders!”.

    “Sir, please don’t! Please don’t! What have I done wrong?”, asked the pretty lady in a frantic voice. Four guards had now surrounded her and were bending her over an empty table.

    “Ha! Ha! Ha! What have you done wrong? Who asked you to be so pretty! It’s your own dam fault! I must therefore have you!”, replied the rider with a smirk as he began undressing himself. He had come across a pretty girl along his journey and immediately wanted her. Who was going to stop him? He felt powerful and in total control. It was like he was invincible. He had the royal title, endless riches, and many body guards by his side. He could do as he wished and get away with it.

    Bak Tin Kiew decided to turn her head away at this point not wanting to see the rider undress himself. She had wanted to draw her sword, but her pressure points had somehow been sealed. She suddenly realised that Yeung Yin Siu had anticipated that she would want to act to save the pretty girl and thus had sealed her pressure points when he placed a hand over her shoulders. Bak Tin Kiew cursed inwardly, “What is big brother Yeung doing? Is he just going to let this innocent young girl get raped?”.

    Just at this moment a man wearing a torn black robe and a plain black mask stepped forward from behind the bushes. Bak Tin Kiew panic slightly upon seeing the masked man. He was dressed exactly like the masked man who had ambushed them earlier.

    “Ha! Ha! Ha! Who’s this insignificant little pest before my eyes!”, mocked the masked man walking towards the golden rider. Upon hearing the voice, Bak Tin Kiew became a little relieved. It was none other than Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Insignificant! Do you know who this is?”, shouted one of the guards pinning the girl down by the arms.

    “He’s probably only a country bumpkin who doesn’t know who he’s messing with!”, mocked the guard holding the girl down by the right arm.

    “Messing with the Emperor’s brother! He must looking for an early death!”, mocked the man pinning the girl down by her waist.

    “Humph! So what if you’re the Emperor’s brother! You eat, breathe fresh air, and drink water in order to survive! You bleed just like any other man! When you die, your flesh will just be meat for the maggots like the rest of us! The only thing that makes you different is that people recognise and bestow a title upon you! That title of yours only means something if others decide to recognise it! When no one recognises that title, it becomes worthless! Now let that young girl go!”, demanded Yeung Yin Siu whilst pointing this long stick forward.

    “Let go? You must be joking right! Who are you and how dare you interfere in my business, which in turn is the Emperor of China’s business?”, replied the golden rider in an arrogant tone. He ignored the masked man’s comments and was now proceeding towards the pretty young girl who hand been bent and now undressed over the table.

    “Oh! Such big titles! I’m really scared! At the end of the day when one decides to kill another without fear of death or fear for one’s own life! The value of grand royal titles and all of the riches in the world are worthless! As you’d die in any case! It’s the life of one against the other in its simplest form! The one who does not fear death and would die a for a good cause will therefore have the advantage! The only thing that can save you is if you’re an immortal! Then no one is capable of killing you!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    Hearing no response from the golden rider, the Yeung Yin Siu stepped forward, “Now hear this! I want you to remember it for the rest of your life! I am Mo Yung Bak of Nanjing in the Nan Zhili province! Prepare to die!”.

    “Why did big brother Yeung say that he was Mo Yung Bak? Why isn’t he taking credit for this heroic deed?”, thought Bak Tin Kiew inwardly.

    As he said the word ‘die’, he leapt up in the air and spun at 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane. It knocked the 40 guards and the golden rider off his feet. Utilising his lightness he zipped through the crowd of fallen guards and the golden rider before smashing hard with his stick against their chest. He only utilised 10% of his inner energy in the attacks. But all of the 40 guards and the golden rider coughed up a mouthful of blood and had been injured seriously. Even Yeung Yin Siu had become a little surprise at the level of his inner energy.

    Standing over the golden rider, Yeung Yin Siu, stampeded his face with his boot before starting to drive his head into the ground. He said, “Ha! Ha! Ha! Brother of the Emperor! Even with 40 guards! Doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to do any good to protect you! Here’s your lunch! Does the earth taste any good? Or should I find some dog turd for you to feed on?”.

    Still managing to curse, the golden rider said, “How dare you offend me! You’ll pay for this! I swear you’ll die a terrible death!”.

    “Humph! Your life is now at my mercy! Yet you still believe you’re in control! We’ll have to see about that!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with an evil grin. His eyes sharpened as he suddenly felt powerful and in control. He was a little shocked by it. But yet he somehow liked it. How was he to know that his father’s crazy blood flowed through his veins and had been pumped through his heart.

    Seeing that the guards had now been knocked out. Many of the customers attempted to run away. Zipping his stick into the air to block the path of those escaping before catching it again in his grasp, Yeung Yin Siu said in a mocking tone, “Eh! I’d like everyone to stay! I’m having a friendly chat with the Emperor’s brother! I’d like everyone to hear it!”.

    None of the customers dared to leave upon seeing the awesome display of kung fu. They remained seated. Leaning down, Yeung Yin Siu decided to punch the golden rider in the right and left eye, leaving behind two black bruises. He then decided to pluck the hair from the head of the golden rider one by one. The golden rider cursed and screamed in pain each time. It took around 20 minutes when Yeung Yin Siu had plucked all of the black hair from atop the golden rider’s head. He was now totally bald and was bleeding in several places.

    Grabbing the golden rider by the throat before slapping him hard across the face and spitting at him, Yeung Yin Siu said, “I bet you thought it was really fun when you wanted to rape that young pretty girl! Well you can bury that thought in your mind forever as you’ll never have that opportunity again! Today I am going to teach you a lesson you’ll never forget! Don’t mess me eccentric personalities of this world when they’re in a bad mood regardless of who you are!”.

    Taking a knife he suddenly sliced down towards the golden rider’s groin. He screamed a terrifying scream that echoed through the valley. It lasted for a long while. Moments later the gold rider passed out from the pain.

    Bak Tin Kiew was in total disbelief at this moment in time. The Yeung Yin Siu she had known thus far had been nothing but a true gentleman despite all of his cheek. She was slightly afraid upon seeing his darker side suddenly emerge before her eyes. He had appeared to have gone made with rage and loss all of his sense. But she should have known that there is a dark side in all humans that walk upon the earth. Those who do not believe so, are living in denial. It is the ability to suppress the dark forces that makes one good. Most people are able to do this subconsciously and thus do not recognise it.

    Her pressure points suddenly released as she rushed to grab Yeung Yin Siu by the hands, Bak Tin Kiew gasped, “Enough! You’ve made him suffer enough already! I’m afraid!”.

    “Afraid? You’re afraid? What can you possibly be afraid of? I Mo Yung Bak fear nothing!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu in a booming voice so that everyone could hear. He gave a glare back at Bak Tin Kiew. His eyes were full of rage. Bak Tin Kiew shivered upon seeing the anger built up in his eyes. She rushed back to her seat and remained quite. She no longer dared to upset Yeung Yin Siu any further at this moment in time.

    Turning his attention back to the golden rider, Yeung Yin Siu kicked him a few times in the ribs to wake him up before shouting, “Hear this now brother of the Emperor! You can lead your entire garrison to Nanjing for revenge if you wish! I Mo Yung Bak do not fear you!”.

    With this he grabbed onto Bak Tin Kiew’s hands before utilising his lightness kung fu to flee from the scene. They could hear the pretty young girl shouting behind them, “Big hero! Thank you!”.

    Suddenly stopping underneath a big willow tree, Yeung Yin Siu said, “Kiew yee, I don’t know what happened back there! It got out of hand! I’m sorry if I scared you!”.

    One could see that his body and his hands were shaking wildly. His heart was pounding fast as hot blood rushed through his veins. He did not know why he had acted so ruthlessly and behaved so wildly. It was as if the mad beast caged up inside his heart for centuries had been unleashed. Cold sweat dripped down his back as he remembered the line from the poem about the 5 Greats that said, “The ‘Northern Dragon’, now hidden, will soon appear. The other four greats will have reasons to fear”.

    “Shh! Shh! Don’t worry!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew in a gentle voice as she hugged tightly onto Yeung Yin Siu. They rested that way for around another 30 minutes before getting on their way again.

    On the way back to the city of Hennan, Yeung Yin Siu could not resist the temptation to undertake a number of other mischievous acts under the false name of Mo Yung Bak. But he was less ruthless this time. He had injured various members of the Black Cliff Mountain Robbers before stealing all of their gold and jewels. He picked fights with members from the Hengshan Sect, Zhongnan Sect, 5 Poisons Sect, and various Demon Cult members. He virtually picked fights with anyone who knew kung fu who crossed his path along his journey back to the city of Hennan. Demanding that if they wanted to look for him for revenge they could go to Nanjing and seek him out. Yeung Yin Siu figured that if someone was going to use his name and create a series of mischief throughout wulin, he may as well do the same. He wanted to drive the imposter out of hiding. He was certain that the imposter had not yet left the city of Hennan. Once he captured the imposter he had a number of tortures in mind to force him into confessing in front of all the heroes at Shaolin. He figured that his guess of Mo Yung Bak was correct, given that the wise and knowledgable Du Fu had also come up with the same answer.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew managed to arrive back at the city of Hennan around 6.00pm in the evening. It was now getting very dark and they decided to rest at the Golden Dragon Inn. Walking up to the manager, Yeung Yin Siu decided to ask, “Manager, around two months ago a young lady who booked a room here had a stable boy take care of a wolf named Black Snow! Did she ever return to collect it?”.

    The manager searched deep into his memory before replying, “Someone did come and collect the wolf I recall! Whether it was your friend! I’m not certain!”.

    “Ah! So Siu Wai is safe!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu as a smiled appeared on his face.

    “Did you see a young looking lady wearing a white dress pass through here around two months ago? Her hair had turned all white! So she won’t be hard to recognise!”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew to the side. She was greatly worried about her master.

    “She would have been with a pretty lady wearing a red dress, purple dress, and black dress. There would also be a number of men with them dressed in black robes with red trimmings! Each of the men would be wearing a red cape on their backs!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu upon noticing that the manager had been searching deep in his mind.

    “You mean the warriors from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins and the females from the 7 Vixens?”, replied the manager.

    “Yes!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew together.

    “I did see some of them pass through here! But not all at the same time! I remember many of them were asking whether I had seen the other people that were with them as well! You two are the last ones to ask me that exact same question!”, remarked the manager.

    “It’s okay! Could we have a room for two please!”, asked Yeung Yin Siu all of a sudden upon thinking that Siu Wai, Fung Lau Yin, Fung Mun Kit, Kiu Pin Fok and the others had returned safely. He was going to deliver a message by pigeon courier to the ‘White Horses Inn’ in Chongqing in the morning to let Fung Lau Yin and Kiu Pin Fok know that he was safe, and what his intentions were from now. He was going to help Bak Tin Kiew avenge the death of her mother before going to look for the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon sword arts.

    “Why certainly! Under which name?”, replied the hotel manager casting a suspicious look at Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu. They did not look like husband and wife.

    “I am Mo Yung Bak, and this is my sister Mo Yung Kiew!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk. He had guessed what was on the manager’s mind.

    “Okay! Last room on the East Wing!”, replied the hotel manager pointing towards the sign that said “East Wing” in the distance towards the left.

    Blushing slightly as they walked up the stairs, Bak Tin Kiew decided to ask, “Big brother Yeung, why did you only book one room for the two of us?”.

    Smiling for the first time since the encounter with the golden robed man, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “It’s the cheapest and safest way to be staying at the Golden Dragon Inn over night! Who knows what may happen at this Inn on any given night!”.

    After settling into their room, Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu went out to the restaurant for dinner. Yeung Yin Siu ordered plates of fried rice, roast beef and pork, along with a few dim sims. He had enough of eating seafood for the past two months. It was still early in the evening so the restaurant was not yet full. Glancing left and right, Yeung Yin Siu noticed something odd. To the left of them sat two odd looking men. One of the men was a bold man in his late 30s. He wore the standard white robe with red trimmings with a red half-crescent moon embroided on the top right hand corner. A large pair of metallic scissors rested to the right hand side of this man. The other man that sat at the table was a giant of a man. In his late 40s. He looked very much like a human meatball. He had a rounded face and his limbs were rather short. His skin appeared to be very oily. His white robes had been stained in red blood. A large machete rested on his right hand side.

    “Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon! What are they doing here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly upon seeing the two men. Both of these men were the Regional Commanders of the Demon Cult from the South. So it was strange indeed that they had remained in the North of China for so long after the annual general meeting. He continued eating with his head down. None of the men recognised him because of the beard he had grown.

    Moments later a third man entered the restaurant. Pulling over a chair he joined, Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon. Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this person. It was none other than Cannibal Chung.

    “The Chancellor sent me to see if you two had managed to scout any further news as to the location of Fisherman Ho! Do you have any news to report?”, asked Cannibal Chung in a curious voice as he leant forward.

    Glancing around the room to check if anyone was listening, Crazy Barber Wu replied, “Fisherman Ho! Fisherman Ho! Why on earth is the Chancellor so concerned about stinky Fisherman Ho?”.

    “Eh! Brother Wu, that’s none of your business! Don’t be so nosy! Tell me what you two uncovered!”, repeated Cannibal Chung looking rather annoyed.

    “Rumours have it that Fisherman Ho just recently just murdered Beggar Hung, the Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan and Leader of the Dirty Beggar Faction!”, replied Butcher Poon.

    “Apparently he has also taken the jade bamboo stick and has disappeared!”, continued Crazy Barber Wu.

    “But I suspect that he’s still in Hennan!”, interrupted Butcher Poon.

    “Good work! I’ll tell her personally when she arrives!”, replied Cannibal Chung.

    “She’s coming here tonight?”, asked Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon together in shock. Tit Yum Ching had not left the Demon Valley since becoming the Chancellor of the Demon Cult. So this was indeed a great surprise to them that she would leave, what to them appeared to be so minor.

    “Eh! That’s none of your business! Your mission here is now finished. The Chancellor has a new assignment for the two of you when you return to the South of China!”, continued Cannibal Chung in an authoritative tone.

    “I’ll confront Tit Yum Ching tonight!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly.

    “What are the Chancellor’s orders then? We’ll do our best to accomplish it!”, asked the Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon in a curious voice.

    “I’m not allow to say! It’s written in this envelope! It’s a secret mission that only myself, the 7 Fingered Demon Flute, 3 Fingered Demon Zither, and the Chancellor knows about! Remember the walls have ears!”, remarked Cannibal Chung as he passed the envelope over to Crazy Barber Wu, before taking a glance around the room.

    Opening the letter and reading its contents before passing it over to Butcher Poon, Crazy Barber Wu remarked, “Excellent! The Chancellor is really clever! I’ll make sure it’s done!”.

    “Excellent! Please reassure the Chancellor that she has chosen the right people for this mission! Even if I die, I’ll make sure this mission gets accomplished!”, agreed Butcher Poon before placing the letter in his mouth and eating its contents.

    “Eh! Brother Poon! Was the letter a good entree?”, asked Cannibal Chung with a smile upon seeing that Butcher Poon had eaten the later.

    Smiling slightly, Butcher Poon replied, “Talking about food! I have something special for you before I go!”.

    Taking a large basket in his hands before opening it to take a look, Cannibal Chung remarked, “Excellent! The finest cut of raw human meat! I’ll make good use of it! Goodbye!”.

    “Goodbye!”, cupping their hands together said, Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon before getting up to leave. Moments later they utilise their lightness kung fu before disappearing from sight.

    Cannibal Chung sat at his table to wait for Tit Yum Ching’s arrival. He couldn’t help but open the basket that Butcher Poon had given him. He took out what looked like the arm of a human before starting to take large bites out of bit. Bak Tin Kiew nearly threw up and passed out upon seeing the inhumane act before her eyes. She did not think it would be possible that someone would be capable of eating another human’s flesh. But how was she to know that there are many countless evils in the world that remain hidden and are very rarely seen.

    “Brother Chung! Put that away! The Chancellor is coming!”, said a man wearing a blue bandanna on his head and the standard white robes with red trimmings of the Demon Cult. This man was none other than Blue Water. Walking alongside him was a man wearing a red bandanna on his head. This was none other than Red Flame. Yeung Yin Siu had meant both of these men before at the Demon Cult so recognised them immediately. They both pulled over a chair to join Cannibal Chung at the table.

    “Welcome! Welcome!”, said Cannibal Chung as he placed the human arm back into the basket. Red Flame and Blue Water both shot an unapproving look at him.

    Not long after Tit Yum Ching entered the restaurant before taking a glance around the room. She was now wearing a red dress with white trimmings. A white veil covered the lower portion of her face. The old bearded man and the young girl in green wearing a white mask immediately caught her attention. She had seen a girl dressed exactly like the girl in green at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult, but could not for the time being guess who she was. She shot a suspicious glance towards the table.

    “Chancellor! What is it?”, remarked the 3 Fingered Demon Zither standing to her right side.

    “Do you suspect someone has infiltrated this hotel and will listen into our conversation?”, asked the 7 Fingered Demon Flute.

    “I’m not sure! But whilst we’re talking I don’t want anyone in this restaurant!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    Pausing for a while to observe the girl in green, Tit Yum Ching ordered, “Tell the manager to close the restaurant now! I want to hold the meeting here in secret!”.

    The 3 Fingered Demon Zither and the 7 Fingered Demon Flute did as they were told. The approached the manager who subsequently told all of the guests that the restaurant was now closed, and to return to their own rooms. A number of customers complained about the restaurant being closed so early, so the manager agreed to serve customers food in their own room.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew could do nothing but return to their rooms. Bak Tin Kiew remained in the room to rest and recover from the two palms striked she had received earlier in the day after finishing dinner. Yeung Yin Siu walked around the garden outside of the restaurant to wait for the meeting to finish. He had wanted to catch Tit Yum Ching before she returns to her room or leave. But he waited for what seemed like three long hours.

    “What on earth could they be discussing?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly as he wandered around the garden to pass the time.

    A number of thoughts entered his mind at this moment in time. He had a sudden though, “Tit Yum Ching had initially wanted to talk me out of quitting the Demon Cult! Now there’s an imposter who’s out to ruin my reputation! I wonder if…”.

    Just at this moment Tit Yum Ching approached the garden. As always the 3 Fingered Demon Zither and the 7 Fingered Demon Flute were by her side. They were very loyal to her and the ‘Tit’ family. Yeung Yin Siu immediately rushed to hide behind one of the large trees. He did not want to be seen at this moment in time, hoping to be able to listen into the conversations. But to his surprise, they weren’t discussing anything. Tit Yum Ching just strolled back and forth along the garden without saying a word. Her arms were folded as she was pacing up and down. Her once peaceful, indifferent, and emotionless face looked very weary and tired.

    “I’d like to spend some time alone! Please leave!”, demanded Tit Yum Ching after a while as she sat down at the small pavilion in the garden.

    “As you wish!”, replied 3 Fingered Demon Zither and the 7 Fingered Demon Flute whilst cupping their hands and bowing slightly. Moments later they disappeared from the garden. But as loyal subjects, they were never going to stray far away.

    Tit Yum Ching gave a sigh as she stared at the full moon shinning brightly high in the evening sky. She had been greatly troubled and stressed for the past two months upon assuming the position of Chancellor of the Demon Cult. She had sorted out a great amount of internal trouble over that time and had executed a number of clan members who broke clan rules. So of them she had known since childhood. But she was powerless to do anything about it. As rules were rules. She was thus very troubled at this moment in time. There was a touch of worry in her once gentle and soothing eyes. Looking around Tit Yum Ching noticed a large jug of wine resting on the table and a number of small cups resting to the side. She smiled a little before pouring wine into an empty cup. She drank the wine in one go before filling another cup with wine. She did this another six times before giving a long sigh.

    Deciding to finally step behind the big tree to reveal himself, Yeung Yin Siu remarked whilst stroking his beard, “Young lady! What troubles you so greatly that you would sit here all alone to drink? Aren’t you bored? Let me join you?”.

    Tit Yum Ching was startled, at not having expected that anyone would be in the garden at this point in time. She shouted, “Who the heck are you? What do you want?”.

    “Who am I? I’m a friend and just wanted to join you for a drink!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst stroking his beard. He did not want to reveal his true identity to her until he cleared his name.

    “Friend? You’re very much mistaken! I have few friends! And all of my friends have either died, or left!”, continued Tit Yum Ching whilst pouring another cup of wine before downing it.

    “Oh! What about Fisherman Ho then? Aren’t you two still friends?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk.

    “Who the heck are you? How do you know Fisherman Ho is my friend?”, replied Tit Yum Ching in shock as she stood up from the table.

    Laughing a little Yeung Yin Siu, walked to the side of the table before pouring himself a cup of wine. He said, “I heard Cannibal Chung say to Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon that you had been so concerned about Fisherman Ho that you have left the Demon Valley to find him! Is that not true?”.

    Pausing for a while he continued, “Also Fisherman Ho is my friend and he has asked that I deliver two gifts to you!”.

    Grabbing Yeung Yin Siu by the arm, Tit Yum Ching remarked, “You mean Fisherman Ho is still alive? Where is he? Please tell me!”.

    “Humph! What makes you think Fisherman Ho has died? Perhaps someone wants to find him to make sure he dies! He won’t be tricked so easily!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk.

    Looking rather annoyed, Tit Yum Ching replied, “What are you implying?”.

    “Surely you’re not going to tell me that you haven’t heard the rumours that Fisherman Ho has just killed Beggar Hung! And a few months ago he killed the Headmaster of the Lion Prestige Escort, Kunlun Sect, and the Emei Sect! So you knew he was alive! Why did you think he was dead?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu once more.

    “Yes! I’ve heard those rumours! But I don’t believe it’s him!”, replied Tit Yum Ching whilst shaking her head.

    “What makes you so certain?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu once more.

    “I… I… I don’t know! I… I… I just know!”, mumbled Tit Yum Ching whilst pouring a cup of wine and downing it again.

    Stroking his beard Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “I don’t believe that its Fisherman Ho who did those cruel acts either! Why I saw him only a couple of days ago and he told me that it was an imposter who has been running around through wulin causing all of the trouble for him!”.

    “Imposter?”, replied Tit Yum Ching in shock.

    Tit Yum Ching suddenly had a thought. She said, “Do you think someone thought that Fisherman Ho has died and thus impersonated him to create trouble through wulin?”.

    “Ha! Ha! Young lady! You’re the one who thinks Fisherman Ho is dead! Is it not possible for you to do what you’ve just said? After all it would greatly benefit the Demon Cult when the orthodox clans are leaderless and in total disarray! It makes them easier for them to be conquered!”, snickered Yeung Yin Siu as he slammed a fist on the table.

    “Also wouldn’t it benefit you personally? That Fisherman Ho’s reputation is ruined throughout wulin? That way he’ll have to stay a Demon Cult member and spend the rest of his life hiding at the Demon Valley! You would therefore be able retain a bodyguard with great abilities! Is that not what you want?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst looking directly at Tit Yum Ching. He knew that the Chancellor of the Demon Cult was indeed a very clever person and was not as weak as she looks.

    “What are you talking about? Who told you that rubbish? I need his ability to be able to get along with the various unorthodox and orthodox clans to help me! So why would I want to ruin Fisherman Ho’s reputation? Besides we are good friends! I could never do that!”, protested Tit Yum Ching whilst shooting a glare at the old bearded man. One could tell that she was speaking the truth.

    Looking the old bearded man in the eye, Tit Yum Ching continued in a sincere voice, “Also you’re very much mistaken about my clan. Long ago we fought alongside the Chancellor of Wulin and thus have no ambitions of destroying all of the orthodox clans!”.

    Smiling delightfully inside, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Young lady, that is not to say that your enemies would not want to harm Fisherman Ho’s reputation knowing how much his friendship means to you! What’s more! They may have uncovered that he has agreed to assist you in monitoring some members from the Demon Cult!”.

    “In fact Fisherman Ho told me that there are only two people who are masters in disguise capable of impersonating him! One of them is your loyal subject Yellow Air and the other is Mo Yung Bak!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst casting a glance back at Tit Yum Ching.

    “Yellow Air? No you’re very much mistaken! I’ve sent him on a mission down South! You can tell Fisherman Ho the next time you see him! I can assure you he was not involved!”, replied Tit Yum Ching whilst looking up and down at the old bearded man. The way he was talking and the tone of the old bearded man’s voice sounded very familiar to her.

    “Okay I trust you! However, are you able to tell me when you saw Yellow Air last? How long ago was it?”, questioned Yeung Yin Siu. He was not totally convinced by Tit Yum Ching’s reply. On his mind this was a very critical question.

    “Now that you’ve mentioned it! I haven’t seen Yellow Air since the annual general meeting!”, remarked Tit Yum Ching in shock.

    Yeung Yin Siu was surprised by Tit Yum Ching’s response. He gasped in horror as a thought suddenly flashed pass his mind, “Dam! Have I wrongly accused Mo Yung Bak?”.

    Stroking his beard and looking a little concerned, he continued, “Young lady, then you can’t be sure as to what Yellow Air is doing at the moment! It could also be said that he may have betrayed you!”.

    Pausing for a moment, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Also Fisherman Ho tells me that Yellow Air is the only one who has seen what he actually looks like out of the two great imposters!”.

    Realising that the old bearded man knew too about the Demon Cult, Tit Yum Ching demanded, “Wait! Who are you?”.

    Breaking the long short stick in his hands to reveal the Iron Blood Sword, before taking out a black silk cloth and placing it on the table for Tit Yum Ching, Yeung Yin Siu said, “I’ve already told you! I am a friend of Fisherman Ho!

    “He told me to deliver these two gifts to you! He said that this sword and the martial arts contained in the silk cloth belongs to your family! He also said that you should learn these arts as they would be of great benefit to you in the future!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu as he presented the Iron Blood sword over to Tit Yum Ching.

    “The Iron Blood sword, and the Iron Blood martial arts? Where did he find these? Did he say?”, remarked Tit Yum Ching in shock upon taking the sword in her hands and reading the silk cloth.

    “Yes! Fisherman Ho found these on his journey and told me to return them to you! Where he found them? That I’m not certain!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He did not want to reveal where he had found the Iron Blood sword and the Iron Blood martial arts. He also did not want anyone else to disturb the resting place of Yeung Kai Seng and Tit Miu Lan.

    Turning to leave he said, “If you’re really concerned about Fisherman Ho then I suggest that you locate Yellow Air! Find out the truth about what he has been doing the past two months! That may help Fisherman Ho to clear his name! I’ll be confronting Mo Yung Bak!”.

    Tit Yum Ching did not respond. She remained silent as many thoughts now ran through her mind. She thought to herself, “Where on earth did Fisherman Ho find the Iron Blood sword! Who’s this old bearded man? How come I’ve never heard of him?”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to leave when he realised he had another question on his mind. He asked, “Also Fisherman Ho wanted to know who it was that removed the deceased body of the Black Widow Assassin from the duelling arena on the day of the annual general meeting?”.

    Searching deep in her mind, Tit Yum Ching replied, “Sorry! But I don’t remember! The only person that would know is the Rule Elder Kwan! He presided over the series of duels!”.

    “I must speak with Rule Elder Kwan!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu to himself. But he had more important matters on his mind at this point in time.

    “Young lady, goodbye and take care! I’ll let Fisherman know that you’re truly concerned about his safety!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he cupped his hands and utilised his lightness kung fu to disappear from sight.

    “Where have I seen this kind of lightness kung fu before!”, thought Tit Yum Ching inwardly as she watched the old bearded man disappear from sight.

    “Wait! You haven’t told me where Fisherman Ho is at the moment!”, shouted Tit Yum Ching. But the old bearded man did not seem to hear her pleas.

    Upon returning to his room, Yeung Yin Siu was greatly shocked and alarmed. The small candle lighting up the room had been put out. It was dead silent inside. He thought, “Where’s Bak Tin Kiew? Surely she hasn’t gone to bed yet! I should at least be able to hear something! Dam…”.

    Wasting no time, Yeung Yin Siu kicked open the door before appearing to rush into the room. He utilised his lightness kung fu before appearing to twist to his right. It appeared as if he suddenly split into three people before entering the room down the centre, left, and right. Suddenly a pair of luminous green eyes emerged from the darkness before launching several strikes at the image of the old bearded man on the right and at the centre. But his attacks hit nothing but thin air.

    “Ah! Ya!”, cried the mysterious man was struck on the left shoulder. Indicating that the man had actually entered the room from the left. Wasting no time he immediately turned around before leaping out of the window to escape.

    Yeung Yin Siu, decided not to pursue after the mysterious man. He was afraid that it would be just another ‘tiger mountain’ trick to lure him away from Bak Tin Kiew. He thought to himself upon remembering the pair of luminous green eyes in the dark, “Could that have been Night Owl? What’s he doing in my room?”.

    Another thought had crossed his mind, “But why would Night Owl want to attack me? He’s one of Tit Yum Ching’s loyal subjects!”.

    A little confused, Yeung Yin Siu walked over to the table before lighting the small candle. It lit up the entire room with a yellowish glow. What he saw amazed him. Someone had entered the room and tipped it upside down. It appeared as if they were frantically searching for something. Bak Tin Kiew was no where to be seen. Her travelling bag and sword had also gone. Cold sweat dripped down Yeung Yin Siu’s back as he thought, “Tin Kiew! Where are you? Where are you?”.

    Opening the window to look outside, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed for the first time that one could see and observe the various events taking place in the garden directly below. He had just been there moments ago and could now see the small pavilion where Tit Yum Ching had sat. A thought crossed his mind, “Could Bak Tin Kiew have opened the window and saw us talking together?”.

    Another thought suddenly entered his mind, “But surely Tin Kiew can’t have taken off just because she saw me talking with another young lady? Could she?”.

    Looking around the room once more, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that a small a dagger had been thursted into the top right hand corner of the bed. There was a letter at the handle of the dagger. Opening the letter, Yeung Yin Siu, read out loud, "Dear Mo Yung Bak, We have some unfinished business! It’s time that we resolve it! Meet me at the Dragon Tavern at lunchtime in Kaifeng in 3 days time if you want to see your little friend alive - Fa Fei Sit!”.

    “Fa Fei Sit?”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu as more questions then answers entered his mind. He heard Kiu Pin Fok had mentioned this name to him before. But he had no idea who this swordsman was or what he wanted.

    “What unfinished business does he have with Mo Yung Bak that he has decided to capture Bak Tin Kiew to force me to confront him? What on earth was he looking for in my room?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to leave the hotel room and make his way towards Kaifeng, when a masked man suddenly ran pass the corridor before launching a projectile in the air. Yeung Yin Siu twisted his body to the left before managing to catch the projectile in his grasp. Opening his right hand, he could see that it was only an insignia which had been launched in the air.

    “The Mo Yung family!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu upon reading the golden words carved into the black insignia.

    Turning the insignia over he read out aloud, “Meet me at the Crocodile Bridge – The real Mo Yung Bak!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu immediately utilised his lightness kung fu to pursue after the masked man who had thrown the insignia into his hands. He thought as he ran, “So my tactics have worked! I’ve driven him out of hiding!”.

    End of Chapter 13.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

  14. #54
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    Default Chapter 13: Mysterious Events

    Chapter 13: Mysterious Events

    The breeze is gently blowing on the outskirts of Hennan around an hour walk from the main city centre. There is an open field full of lush green grass on either side of a dirt track. A large herd of cattle and sheep could been seen grazing on the grass tended by a small farm boy. A small river of crystal clear water runs through the field of corn before intersecting the small dirt track in the distance ahead. A small bridge made up of long yellow bamboo sticks rests above the bank of the river, allowing travellers to cross it from the small dirt track leading them into a dark forest full of tall and skinny green bamboo trees. From a distance one could see that a handsome young man in black robes was fast approaching the small bamboo bridge. He takes a quick glance over his shoulders before increasing his speed. Seconds later he arrives at the bridge. But his face seems to carry an uneasy disposition as he suddenly stops in his tracks. Sweat starts forming on his forehead as he hesitates to cross over the bridge before him. Turning around he could see in the distance around 50 men wearing torn and weathered grey robes pursuing after him. They were getting closer and closer. Yet the handsome young man in black robes decides not cross the bridge.

    Glancing nervously at the writing carved into a large grey rock by the side of the river, he reads the words out loud, “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring”.

    Suddenly the handsome young man in black robes decides to turn around and stood in an attacking position holding onto the jade bamboo stick with his hands out stretched. He did not fear seem to fear the abilities of the 50 men pursuing after him. But he did appear to fear the opponent before him. So he chose not to enter the bamboo forest, deciding to take his chances with the men pursuing after him. Not long after the 50 men pursuing the young man in black robes caught up before standing 10 paces away. They immediately surrounded him and made sure that they blocked off all possible escape routes.

    A tall and well-built man in his late 60s decided to step forward from the crowd. One could notice that there were 9 bags stitched to the right hand side of his torn grey robes. He was obviously a District Commander of the Beggar Clan. He carried a short dog beating stick in his right hand. His eyes were sharp like that of a hawk. His face was red as he appeared to be in a little bit of a rage.

    Speaking in a loud booming voice he said, “Fisherman Ho! You’ve murdered our Deputy Chief, Beggar Hung and have stolen his jade bamboo stick! Give yourself up now! You have no where else to go!”.

    “Beggar Jong! You want me to give myself up? You’ve got to be joking! I’ve never thought of that!”, replied the handsome young man in black robes as he charged forward to attack the Beggar Clan members.

    “What a devil! Attack!”, shouted Beggar Jong as he waved his stick in the air. He leapt backwards to stand 5 paces away to direct the formation.

    Thirty-six of the Beggar Clan members stepped forward and formed the ‘Capturing the Wild Dog’ formation. It was a formation designed to capture an elite fighter without harming them. It was not intended to kill. The purpose of the formation is to seal all of the opponent’s pressure points before trapping them with their short dog hitting sticks.

    “Beggar Jong! Watch carefully! It’ll be the last time you’ll see this move!”, shouted the handsome young man in black robes in a very arrogant tone. Suddenly he twisted his body and spun in 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane.

    The force created by the chi energy knocked most of the Beggar Clan members off their feet. This indicated that even at such a young age the handsome young man in black robes possessed a high level of inner energy. Before any of the Beggar Clan members had a chance to respond, the handsome young man had already reached into his pockets. He grabbed a number of tiny silver needle projectiles before shooting them out towards the Beggar Clan members whilst still spinning in a 360 degree cycle. His projectile throwing technique was very precise and accurate.

    Moments later all of the 50 Beggar Clan members cried out, “Ah Ya!”, upon feeling a burning sensation in their eyes. Blood began pouring from both eye sockets before flowing down onto their face and neck. They were struggling to stand up right against the powerful force of the black hurricane, and thus they could not use their sticks to block the projectiles launched at them. Furthermore they had only intended to capture the handsome young man in black robes for questioning and not really want to kill him. So they were slightly caught off guard They could have never guess that the handsome young man in black robes would have been so ruthless towards them. He displayed no mercy what so ever.

    The 50 odd Beggar Clan members now rolled along the ground as the screamed in pain whilst holding their eyes. They could now only see darkness and gasped out in panic, “What a devil! What a devil!”.

    The majority of Beggar Clan members expected death moments later upon realising that they had been defeated. But the handsome young man in black robes did not take any action against them. Instead he stood there and laughed out loud. He said, “Ha! Ha! Who would have thought the Beggar Clan is so useless!”.

    Waving the jade dog beating stick about, he continued, “The jade dog beating stick is now mine! I heard a rule in the Beggar Clan that the person who holds the jade bamboo stick in hand is the Chief. So I guess I’m now your new Chief! Anyone who can defeat me can claim the leadership and the jade dog beating stick back! But until then, anyone who dares to defy my orders will suffer the same fate as everyone here today!”.

    Pointing the jade do beating stick forward in triumph he said, “Now get your miserable faces from my sight! I want all of you to spread the news throughout both the ‘Dirty’ and the ‘Clean’ Beggar Faction, that I Fisherman Ho am now the new Chief of the Beggar Clan! I will therefore attend and represent the Beggar Clan at the forum held at Shaloin in a few weeks time to discuss the position of Chancellor of Wulin!”.

    The 50 odd Beggar Clan members did not respond. They just kept rolling on the ground whilst crying out loud, “My eyes! My eyes! You bastard! You’ve blinded me!”.

    The handsome young man just kept on smiling. He stopped smiling upon turning around and taking a glance at the green bamboo forest behind him. Moments later he motioned to utilise his lightness kung fu in an attempt to dash off. It appeared for some reason that the handsome young man in black robes had wanted to get as far away from the “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring” as possible after his triumph.

    “Hold it! You’re not going anywhere!”, shouted an old bearded man wearing torn and weathered black robes as he approached the bridge. He carried only a long and thick stick in his right hand.

    Moments later a young girl wearing a white facemask and a torn and weathered green dress rushed up by his side. She was carrying a long white sword in her right hand.

    Looking a little puzzled as to the identities of the two people before him, the handsome young man in black robes shouted in an arrogant tone, “Who the heck are you two? How dare you interfere in Fisherman Ho’s business? You must be tired of living!”,

    Stepping forward the old beared man said, “Who am I? I should be asking you that question instead! Fisherman Ho’s business is my business! Therefore I must interfere!”.

    Pointing his old stick forward the old beared man demanded, “Who the heck are you? Speak!”.

    Smiling proudly the handsome young man in black robes said in a very arrogant tone, “You want to know who I am? If you can defeat me! Then I’ll tell you! But you’ll never have the opportunity!”.

    With that the handsome young man in black robes twisted his body and spun in 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane once more in an attempt to knock both of his opponents off their feet. He was successful against the young girl in green wearing a white mask. Such was the force being generated by the handsome young man in black robes that she immediately fell on her backside and struggled to get up.

    The old beared man stood with his arms folded. His hair was blowing wildly in the hurricane created by the chi energy from the handsome young man in black robes. Walking forward he said in a mocking tone, “Young man, you’re indeed very talented! When it’s summer my house often gets very hot! I wonder whether you’d be kind enough to come over during the hot summer days to create this small hurricane to relieve me from all of the hot air. You’d be a great human fan!”.

    “Why you…”, shouted the handsome young man in black robes, clearly not impressed by the old bearded man’s comments.

    The handsome young man in black robes suddenly stoped spinning in endless cycles. He immediately stepped forward and striked out with the jade bamboo stick aiming for the mid stomach of the old bearded man. Suddenly the old bearded man appeared to have twisted his body right. But he suddenly appeared in front of the handsome young man in black robe’s face before twisting left and then right again. It happened so fast that it appeared as if the old bearded man had suddenly separated into three people. The handsome young man in black robes became frozen on the spot as he watched the stances carefully before his eyes. His attack striked nothing but air despite having appeared to slash through the mid stomach region of the image of the old bearded man before him.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried the handsome young man in black robes moments later. He had been struck three times on the right hand. It suddenly felt numb as he lost all of the strength and immediately dropped the jade bamboo stick onto the floor.

    A little bit of fear gripped the handsome young man in black robes at this moment as he mumbled, “Who… Who… Who on earth are you? There’re… They’re… They’re very few people in wulin capable of defeating me!”.

    “Who I am is not important! But you’re very much mistaken about your abilities! You’re skills aren’t even a match for the top 50 fighters in all of wulin!”, remarked bearded old man as he picked the jade bamboo stick off the floor before passing it over to the young lady in green for safe keeping.

    Pointing his stick forward, the old bearded man suddenly demanded, “Well I’ve defeated you! Now it’s time for you to tell me who you are? Please tell me now!”.

    The handsome young man in black robes did not reply. He was looking rather dejected at having just been beaten so easily by the old bearded man. He did not even last one stance of the old bearded man’s unique sword arts and yet he was able to defeat 50 Beggar Clan members so easily.

    Hearing no response, the old bearded man continued whilst pointing his long stick forward towards the handsome young man in black robe’s Adam’s apple pressure point, “Well who the heck are you? Speak now! Or die!”.

    “I’m…”, replied the handsome young man in black robes before stopping short. A number of swishing sound suddenly echoed through the air as a sea of tiny shiny metal objects had been launched towards the old bearded man, and the young lady in green.

    “What the heck! How shameful! Ambushing one from behind!”, gasped the old bearded man as he dodged from left to right before blocking most of the projectiles launched at him.

    Looking up he noticed that the young girl in green had been able to defend herself from the surprise attack. A smile flashed across his face upon seeing this. But he was caught by total surprise upon seeing that a number of projectiles had also been launched at the handsome young man in black robes. The old bearded man had initially thought that the handsome young man in black robes and the men who had just ambushed them were in league with each other. But it was now obvious that they were not.

    “What on earth is going on? Who’s that handsome young man in black robes? Who are these people now launching an ambush attack at us?”, thought the old bearded as he continued using the long stick to block the incoming projectiles.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried some of the Beggar Clan members who had been crawling on the ground. They had just been blinded and so could not tell the direction in which the projectiles were coming from. Many of them were struck by a projectile as a result and could not dodge from the ambush attack.

    The handsome young man in black robes was more than capable of dodging all of the projectiles launched in the air. Suddenly he launched a palm attack and managed to catch the young girl in green off guard. He had struck her on the shoulder before recovering the jade bamboo stick in his hands. Moments later the handsome young man in black robes utilised his lightness kung fu and rushed off into the distance. Around six masked man wearing black robes and a black mask suddenly appeared in view before pursuing after the handsome young man in black robes. The young girl picked herself off from the ground clutching onto her right shoulder. She wasn’t seriously injured, but was suffering a little shocked at having been struck by a palm.

    The old bearded man was going to chase after the handsome young man in black robes, but he was stopped in his tracks once more as a number of projectiles were launched against him from behind. By the time he had blocked all of the projectiles launched against him, the handsome young man in black robes and the many masked men pursuing after him had disappeared from sight.

    Half of the 50 Beggar Clan members crawling along the ground had now been struck by a projectile and died instantly. It was a sign that the projectiles launched at them contained some deadly poison. All that could be heard at this moment in time was the remaining 25 Beggar Clan members still crawling around the ground crying out in pain, “My eyes! My eyes! I can’t believe I’m blind! That bastard!”.

    Suddenly it became quite. The projectiles being launched in the air had ceased. It appeared as if the various people who had surrounded the old bearded man and the young girl in green had taken off and retreated. But the old bearded man remained cautious and did not put his guard down. He was sure there were still various men hiding in the bamboo forest waiting to ambush them. Turning left and right he listened in closely to detect possible sounds of danger. Suddenly he heard some faint rustling from the bushes behind him. The old bearded man immediately leapt forward in that direction with his long stick pointed forwards in an attacking position. He saw a medium built man wearing a black robe and a plain black mask rushing away. He appeared to be like a black blur as he ran. It looked very much like the lightness kung fu of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins.

    “Gwai Mo Ming?”, thought the old bearded man to himself as he pursued after the masked man.

    He could now hear someone yelling from behind him, “Wait for me!”. It was the voice of the young girl in green as she pursued after them. But her voice was now some distance away. In indication that the masked man and the old bearded man possessed some exceptional lightness kung fu. They had travelled a great distance in a short space of time.

    “The masked man is indeed an elite fighter!”, though the old bearded man as he gave chase.

    Turning his attention back to the young girl in green, the old bearded man frantically shouted back in a booming voice, “No! Stay where you are! Don’t leave the blind Beggar Clan members! Protect them and make sure they’re safe from harm! We’ll need them alive to find out what happened here!”.

    “Okay!”, shouted the young girl in green as she turned to rush back to the bamboo bridge.

    Moments later the old bearded man could hear the frantic clashing of swords back at the bamboo bridge. It was followed by loud cries and shrieks seconds later. It appeared as if a number of men had suddenly been butchered to death. He thought inwardly, “Dam! The ‘tiger mountain trick’. That masked man was only luring me away!”.

    Giving it no further thought he immediately rushed back to help the young girl in green. He knew that her abilities were far lower than the men who had launched the ambush attack at the Beggar Clan members. Upon returning to the scene he heard the young girl in green could be heard crying out in pain, “Ah Ya!”. A man wearing black robes and a black mask had just hit her with a palm across the left shoulder.

    There were now actually ten masked men surrounding the young girl in green. Moments later the masked man that had struck the young girl in green immediately utilises his lightness kung fu. He took off upon seeing that the old bearded man had returned. The other 9 masked men followed him closely behind. The old bearded man attempted to give chase. But he was met with a sea of tiny little projectiles being launched at him and the young girl in green. Seeing the urgent situation, he rushed up to grab the young girl in green by the hands, before jumping into the small river below the bamboo bridge. The tiny projectiles narrowly missed them both.

    “Brother Yeung! I’m glad you’ve returned! I was so scared!”, remarked the young girl in green as she leant forward to give the old bearded man a firm hug.

    “Eh! Kiew yee, I’m glad you’re safe! I should have never left you alone!”, replied the old bearded man holding onto the young girl in green.

    It was now obvious underneath the clear daylight that the old bearded man was none other than Yeung Yin Siu, and the young girl in green was none other than Bak Tin Kiew. They had spent the past hour slowly pursuing after the handsome man in black robes. They had done this deliberately, as they wanted to see what the intentions of that handsome young man had been, and why he had impersonated Fisherman Ho. But they could never have guessed that he would have been so ruthless. So they managed to arrive too late to help the Beggar Clan members.

    Moments later Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew leapt back up onto the small bamboo bridge. Picking up a small projectile before placing it under his nose to smell it, Yeung Yin Siu, suddenly remarked, “Black widow poison!”.

    “What? Isn’t she dead?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew in amazement.

    “The Black Widow Assassin is definitely dead! But someone has managed to obtain her deadly poisons formula and managed to recreate the poison!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a look of concern on his face. He knew the black widow poison was virtually incurable. Only the black scorpion poison can cancel out the effects of the black widow poison. But according to Mischievous Monk there are many side effects involved as a result of that cancelling process.

    “Big brother Yeung, I suspect this group of masked men must have been at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult! Or they must be somehow connected to the Demon Cult!”, remarked Bak Tin Kiew picking up a needle off the ground to smell it herself.

    Nodding his head in agreement, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “Yes, it’s certain that those men attended the annual general meeting! But they may not necessarily be Demon Cult members! They could have just infiltrated the Demon Cult on that particular day!”.

    “Or they could be members from the…”, continued Yeung Yin Siu before stopping short. He remembered the lightness kung fu being utilised by the masked man and the handsome young man in black robes. He became very concerned.

    “What? Which other clan do you suspect these men to be from?”, questioned Bak Tin Kiew with a curious look on her face.

    “Nothing!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst shaking his head. He was going to say, “13 Ghost Mountain Assassins”, but he still didn’t believe in his heart that they could be capable of doing such an act. Nor did he believe that they harbour ambitions of world domination.

    Yeung Yin Siu had grown up under the teachings and wisdom of the Black Bat Assassin. So deep in his heart he knew that members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins were not really that evil at heart. Many of them just had unfortunate lives and thus resorted to becoming assassins to kill for money. It was the only way they knew how to survive. There was a rumour throughout wulin that said, “Just for money! Members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins would even kill their own parents, relatives, and close friends!”. But Yeung Yin Siu knew this was far from the truth. Besides many of the members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins were orphans and had no relatives, and the few friends they had were each other.

    Turning around he decided to ask, “Kiew yee, did you see who removed the Black Widow Assassin’s body from the duelling pit after she was slained by Rain? I was duelling in the next round and did not see what happened?”.

    “No!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew casting an uneasy glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    She gave a long sigh before continuing, “I was too concerned about your safety that I did not pay any attention to what had happened to the Black Widow Assassin!”.

    Giving a long sigh, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Only one person will know for certain who removed the Black Widow Assassin’s body from the duelling pit!”.

    “Who’s that?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in a curious voice.

    “The Chancellor of the Demon Cult herself! Only Tit Yum Ching would know for sure!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he walked over to examine the dead bodies of over 50 Beggar Clan members. The masked men had slained them all and left none alive.

    “Tit Yum Ching? You… You… You want to see her?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew in a low voice. Her heart suddenly ached a little.

    Not realising that Bak Tin Kiew was a little troubled, Yeung Yin Siu replied in an enthusiastic voice, “Yes! I’m going to arrange a meeting with her tonight when we head back to the Golden Dragon Inn! Besides, I have to return the Iron Blood sword and the Iron Blood arts to her sooner or later!”.

    Bak Tin Kiew did not respond. She kepted silent as she examined some of the dead bodies herself. Being a little inexperienced in wulin, she could not find any clues as to who had ambushed them.

    Hearing no response, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Besides I need to see her for another reason!”.

    “What else do you want to see her about?”, becoming slightly intrigued asked Bak Tin Kiew.

    “I must confront her about something!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu sounding a little uneasy as he remembered the handsome young man in black robes who had impersonated him. He was a no namer in wulin and could not think of the reason, for the time being, as to why anyone would want to impersonate him. So he suspected it had something to do with Tit Yum Ching.

    Not knowing what was on Yeung Yin Siu’s mind at the moment, Bak Tin Kiew asked, “What is it big brother Yeung? You look a little worried!”.

    Seeing the concerned expression on Bak Tin Kiew’s face, Yeung Yin Siu decided to keep what was on his mind a secret. He said whilst grabbing hold of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands, “Oh! It’s really nothing! I just wanted to ask whether she has seen my auntie or uncle that’s all!”.

    “Big brother Yeung! Is that really all you want to discuss with Tit Yum Ching?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew. She was not totally convinced that what Yeung Yin Siu had told her was the truth.

    Yeung Yin Siu did not respond. Letting go of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands he started to examine the injuries on one of the deceased Beggar Clan members on the ground. He remarked, “Interesting! Why would a Beggar Clan member ambush members from his own clan! This is really weird!”.

    “How can you tell that it was a Beggar Clan member who killed this person?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew as she stood over the body to have a closer look.

    Lifting the grey robe away from the right abdomen region to expose the wounds so that Bak Tin Kiew could see. Yeung Yin Siu continued, “See this slash across the right abdomen region! It is not a clean slice like that of created by a sword or a sabre. It is not smooth like that of a wound created by a staff or any other symmetrical weapon! Only a weapon with very rough, jagged, and inconsistent edges are able to create this kind of messy wound! It leads me to conclude that these wounds have been created by the short beating sticks of a Beggar Clan member!”.

    Bak Tin Kiew’s face suddenly turned pale upon seeing the wound on the Beggar Clan member’s body. Her eyes then filled with rage, as emotions of anger over took fear. She cried, “I’ve seen these wounds before as well. It’s similar to one of the wounds on my mother’s deceased body!”.

    “Then it’s certain then that a member from the Beggar Clan participated in murdering your mother!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he placed a hand on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulder to calm her down.

    “Did you manage to see the weapons being wielded by the other masked men who attacked you when I was gone?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu as he went to examine the other bodies on the ground.

    Shaking her head left and right, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “No. I was too focused on defending myself from the attacks launched by the masked man in front of me!”.

    “Well what weapon was that man wielding?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu as he tried to find more clues as to the identities of the other masked men who had just attacked them.

    Searching deep in her mind, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “He was wielding a standard long broad sword!”.

    “Broad sword? What was carved onto the hilt of the sword? Did you see it?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu. Indeed most of the wounds on the remaining bodies were thin and deep cuts, confirming that the standard broad sword created them. Many clans in wulin used this kind of weapon including the Wudang Sect. So it would be difficult to guess the exact clan of the men who attacked them just from these kinds of wounds.

    Shaking her head once more, Bak Tin Kiew remarked, “No. I didn’t manage to see what was carved into the hilt of the sword!”.

    “Then the only real lead we have is that some members of the Beggar Clan had participated in this ambush attack on their own clan members!”, sighed Yeung Yin Siu. He had wanted to uncover much more information. Also, he was greatly disturbed and totally shocked as to why someone would want to impersonate him to create trouble throughout wulin.

    “Big brother Yeung, wait! Come here!”, said Bak Tin Kiew as she looked around to make sure that no one was hiding nearby. She then took off her green top before holding it in her right hand. Moments later she untied her white undergarment to expose her shoulder blade. One could see that she was wearing a yellow brassier underneath, showing off her soft curves and elegant curves.

    “Eh! Kiew yee, what on earth are you doing?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in shock upon seeing that Bak Tin Kiew had partially undressed herself.

    Letting out a little shy laugh, Bak Tin Kiew said, “It’s not what you think! Two palms struck me earlier! I thought that you may be able to recognise these wounds!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu walked up to Bak Tin Kiew to observe the wounds and bruises on the right and left shoulder of Bak Tin Kiew. But his eyes couldn’t help but wonder occasionally from the shoulder blade across the chest from time to time. There was a big black bruise on Bak Tin Kiew’s left shoulder. But that was to be expected given the force of the strike. But there was nothing unusual about the palm technique or clues left behind that would enable one to guess the identity of the masked man who had executed that palm strike.

    “The Iron Palms? Or could it be the Iron Blood Palms?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought out aloud upon seeing the red palm mark on Bak Tin Kiew’s right shoulders.

    “You recognise them? Then who do you suspect that handsome young man in black robes to be?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew upon hearing Yeung Yin Siu’s thoughts.

    Yeung Yin Siu remained silent for a while. It was obvious who one of the likely suspects were. He replied, “There are only a couple of people in wulin who come to mind with the palm techniques capable of leaving this kind of red mark behind on a human body! They are the Iron Palms of the of the ‘Mo Yung’ family and the Iron Blood Palms of the ‘Tit’ family!”.

    “Tit family? Do you suspect that Tit Yum Ching is somehow connected to the person who impersonated you? I thought the two of you were very good friends!”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in shock.

    “Eh! Tin Kiew, you don’t know that much. The Chancellor only makes friends with the people who can assist her. Also I’m not totally certain that she’s behind all of this! I don’t know whether she or any other Demon Cult member, for that matter, has that level of skill in the Iron Blood Palms! It has also been executed differently to the palm technique that I have copied from the cave! So it may not be the Iron Blood Palms after all!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He did not believe in his heart that Tit Yum Ching would do something to harm his reputation.

    Another thought crossed Yeung Yin Siu’s mind, as he remembered that the ‘5 Elements’ have recently been named as the 5 Guardians of the Demon Cult. Amongst this group of elite fighters was a person by the name of Yellow Air who is renowned as the master ‘shape changer’. It was rumoured throughout wulin that Yellow Air could fold air and bend sunlight to create an illusion. Yellow Air could thus assume any form or impersonate anyone in wulin. No one actually knew whether Yellow Air was a man or woman, such was the level of his skills in disguise. All Yellow Air had do to in order to impersonate someone was to look at them in the face.

    “Why would she want to harm my reputation?”, Yeung Yin Siu suddenly thought to himself as he suddenly felt very uneasy. He was certain that he had guessed correctly. Besides, Yellow Air had seen him at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult.

    Yeung Yin Siu stood deep in thought. His head dropped down slightly and it appeared as if he was now starring directly at Bak Tin Kiew’s chest. But he was actually searching through his mind about all the possible reasons as to why Tit Yum Ching would want to harm his reputation.

    Pulling her white undergarment above her shoulders, before dressing herself again, Bak Tin Kiew shouted, “Big brother Yeung, that’s very naughty! What do you think you’re doing? Keep your eyes up where I can see them!”.

    But Yeung Yin Siu did not reply for a long while. He was still lost in thought. Snapping out of his daze before looking up he said, “Eh! Tin Kiew, did you just saying something?”.

    Bak Tin Kiew was just about to respond when she heard the voice of a young girl saying in a very mocking tone, “Who’s the naughty one? Undressing themselves in front of a man in broad daylight! You are the one who should be ashamed of yourself!”.

    Turning around to the source of the voice, Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu suddenly noticed a tiny little girl around the age of 7-8 years of age standing behind them. She was wearing a light grey dress with white trimmings. Her hair had been tied into two piggy tails to the side. A big smile emerged on her face making her look rather cute and adorable.

    “I wonder how long she’s been standing here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly. He was rather shocked at having been unable to detect that someone had approached them. He was an experienced fighter and so should have not been caught off guard so easily as he had just been. What’s more by a 7-8 year old girl. He was rather bemused by this. Bak Tin Kiew on the other hand turned a little red upon hearing the young girl’s comments.

    Looking at the large grey rock towards the side of the bamboo bridge for the first time, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed the words carved into the surface. He thought inwardly, “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring! So this is the home of Du Gum Lin, sister of the great Calligraphy Swordsman! No wonder that handsome man in black robes feared going into the forest to escape! None that have entered the forest have come out alive!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was now studying the young girl very carefully. She had seen the various dead bodies on the ground and yet showed no signs of fear. This was very rare indeed. He thought, “Surely this young girl is not Du Gum Lin!”.

    Hearing no response the young girl continued whilst giggling, “You two have better leave! This is no place for secret romances! But I suggest that you both get married before doing anything else !”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to ask the young girl for her name, when someone approached the bridge from the dirt path. He said, “Eh! Ah Sing! Don’t be so rude! I’ve already told you not to make assumptions about people before finding out the truth about who they are and what they are doing first! Then perhaps you’ll understand what this young girl had been doing! It may not necessarily be rude as you may think it to be!”.

    “Also you don’t know whether they’ve actually already married or not! Yet you’ve suggested that they get married before they do anything else! True that your assumptions may prove correct! However by assuming you’ve already labelled and pre-judged a total stranger without even knowing the entire truth! How can you do that? That’s really bad! Haven’t you learnt anything that I’ve taught you for the past 4 years? Judge people on not what you hear! Judge people only on what you know!”, sighed the man in grey robes as he approached Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew.

    One could now see that the man who approached them appeared to be around 27 years of age. A clean grey robe with white trimmings covered his medium built body. His hair was tied neatly at the back with a white scarf. He a had a thin but very handsome face and appeared to be a well-educated man. He was carrying a large bamboo pen in his left hand and a long green bamboo stick in his right hand. A large rectangle bamboo basket had been swung over his shoulders. One could see that it contained a number of scrolls. Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this man as the grey swordsman he had been drinking with in his dreams.

    “Sorry master! I didn’t mean to pre-judge but…”, replied the young girl named Ah Sing as she rushed up to stand besides the man in grey robes.

    Tugging her master by the robe she continued, “Master! Sister Gum Lin is not in at the moment! Her servants suggested that you wait here for her to return! They will not allow us to enter! They were being quite rude to me also!”.

    “Why is she being so secretive at the moment? Even I have to wait here for her to return? You’ve got to be kidding! I’m her elder brother! This is most unlike her!”, remarked the man in grey robes with a worried look on his face. But he knew his younger sister well. So he gave a sigh and stood where he was.

    Looking on the ground he noticed the many deceased bodies of the Beggar Clan members laying on the ground. Turning to face Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew, he said whilst cupping his hands together, “My name is Du Fu! May I have the pleasure of knowing your names and what business brings you to the Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring! Do you have business with my sister?”.

    Stepping forward and cupping his hands together, Yeung Yin Siu introduced himself, “A pleasure to meet you! Your sword arts are famed in the Central regions of China! My surname is ‘Ho’ and first names are ‘Yin Siu’!”.

    Glancing across at Yeung Yin Siu, Bak Tin Kiew thought, “Why does big brother Yeung persist with using the name Ho Yin Siu? Isn’t he afraid that the imposter has already ruined his image?”.

    “My surname is ‘Lok’ and first names are ‘Tin Kiew’!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew whilst cupping her hands. She was still using an alias name.

    “Ho Yin Siu?”, remarked Du Fu out loud to himself. This name did indeed sound very familiar to him. But he did not immediately remember where he had heard of the name.

    “You mean you’re Fisherman Ho?”, shouted Du Fu as he leapt back and drew his green bamboo stick and long bamboo pen in an attacking position.

    “Wait! Please let me explain!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he raised his right hand in an urgent rush.

    “Okay! I’m listening!”, replied Du Fu as he lowered his weapons. He had just given a big lecture to his young apprentice about making assumptions before knowing the entire truth. So he wasn’t about to act rashly and attack without first hearing the other side of the story from the man claiming to be Fisherman Ho. Along his journey he had heard a number of vicious rumours about Fisherman Ho that spread like wild fire. Fisherman Ho’s reputation was now in taters. Most of the shallow people in wulin believed them to be true without finding the truth out for themselves. But Du Fu was by no means a shallow person.

    Moments later Yeung Yin Siu explained in detail the events that had just taken place at the yellow bamboo bridge. He had also explained how he and Bak Tin Kiew had been trapped down a small cave on the outskirts of Hennan. He left out the bits about him attending the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult. He also decided not to tell Du Fu about his own guesses about who he thought the handsome young man in black robes, and the masked man who had ambushed them had been. He was interested to hear Du Fu’s own guesses. Du Fu also went over and examined all of the 50 deceased bodies on the ground. Moments later, Yeung Yin Siu described the wounds he had just seen on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulder blades to him.

    “Ah Sing! See! What did you learn today? These two weren’t doing anything rude! Nor did they have any romantic thoughts in mind! This young gentleman was just examining the wounds on his friend!”, remarked Du Fu upon hearing the end of Yeung Yin Siu’s story, whilst looking across at his young apprentice. One could tell that Du Fu was greatly troubled by the events. He remained deep in thought.

    “What should we do with these stinky bodies? We can’t leave them here otherwise Sister Gum Lin will get upset!”, interrupted Ah Sing whilst pointing over to all of the deceased bodies.

    “Ah Sing! I want you to go into the city of Hennan and find Rule Elder Beggar Lau! Lead him back here. Tell him these bodies will need to be delivered as evidence in time for the urgent summit at Shaolin!”, replied Du Fu.

    Ah Sing nodded her head and immediately disappeared from sight. One could see that she possessed excellent lightness kung fu, even for someone at such a young age.

    “Urgent summit at Shaolin? What’s happening there?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in shock. She had never heard about this summit before. But she knew that her father normally resides over all wulin matters on behalf of all of the orthodox clans.

    “You two have been trapped down in a cave for two months! So no wonder you don’t know about the urgent summit held at Shaolin!”, remarked Du Fu.

    Giving a long sigh, Du Fu continued, “The Chiefs, and Clan Leaders of all the orthodox clans have written a letter to Reverend Guy Jang the current Abbot of Shaolin indicating a total loss of confidence in the leadership of Bak Fung Wan! They wish to remove him from the post of Chancellor of Wulin! This is what is being discussed at the summit! Rumours have it that the Chancellor of Wulin received a personal invitation to discuss this matter with Reverend Guy Jang around 6 months ago, but decided to decline the offer! So Shaolin had no other option than to call this urgent summit! Apparently Bak Fung Wan has already left Taishan and is making his way towards Shaolin to meet one on one with Reverend Guy Jang!”.

    “Ah! So father is still alive and well!”, thought Bak Tin Kiew with a sigh of relief upon hearing the news.

    “Removing the current Chancellor of Wulin from his current post? On what grounds?”, interrupted Yeung Yin Siu.

    Turning to face Yeung Yin Siu, Du Fu replied, “There are a number of reasons. The Head Master of the Huashan Sect has sighted the Chancellor’s inability many years ago to lead the orthodox clans to kill the Black Dragon Swordsman. His apparent return has shaken wulin with fear. Many innocent lives have died at the edge of his black dragon blade since his return. The Head Master of Huashan has had enough and seeks a resolution to this problem!”.

    Pausing for a while, Du Fu continued, “The Head Master of the Songshan Sect was angered upon receiving a letter warning him to stop the bloodshed between the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect. He was said to have written a letter to the Reverend Guy Jang accusing Bak Fung Wan of stealing the Frost Palms and Frost Sword kung fu manuals. He wishes Bak Fung Wan to return those kung fu manuals over to him! Also the Head Master of the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect have written a letter complaining against Bak Fung Wan’s conduct and handling of the situation! The Head Master of the Emei Sect and the Divine Butterfly Sect have also complained against Bak Fung Wan’s conduct!”.

    “Oh!”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew upon hearing this. She thought her father’s plan in dealing with the Songshan Sect and the Emei Sect had in fact been a good idea. Who would have thought that the various Head Master’s would then gang up on her father.

    Casting a curious glance at Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu continued, “Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan, Beggar Hung from the Dirty Faction had also written in a letter accusing Bak Fung Wan of recognising him as the rightful Chief of the Beggar Clan. The other Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan, Beggar Fong from the Clean Faction has complained about the same thing! Both Beggar Hung and Beggar Fong now seeks a resolution to this situation at the summit. Now Beggar Hung has been murdered and the jade bamboo stick has gone missing! It can only make matters worse for Bak Fung Wan come the summit at Shaolin!”.

    Giving a long sigh once again, Du Fu continued, “Finally there’s the matter of Fisherman Ho who Bak Fung Wan has failed to take any action against! Apparently in the last two months, Fisherman Ho has murdered the Head Master of the Lion Prestige Escort! The 3rd senior apprentice brother Wan Bong San is now their current Chief. The Head Master of the Emei Sect and the Head Master of the Kunlun Sect has also been murdered! And now Beggar Hung!”.

    Turning to look Du Fu in the eye, Yeung Yin Siu asked, “Well do you believe that I’m capable of committing such cruel and ruthless crimes? Or do you think I’m innocent?”.

    Smiling Du Fu replied, “Of course I believe you!”.

    “Oh! Why is that?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in a curious tone. A smile flashed across his face.

    “Because I passed by a handsome young man in black robes when I was heading this way! But I did not really pay that much attention to him! It is only now that I realise he must have been the same person as the one you’ve just described to me!”, replied Du Fu. Earlier he had been in such a rush to meet up with his sister that he did not really take much notice when he saw a man in black robes going in the opposite direction at a rapid rate. All he managed to do was take a quick glance at him.

    “But he was no longer carrying the jade bamboo stick! So he must either have lost it, hidden it, or given it to someone else”, remarked Du Fu.

    “Given it to someone else? Do you suspect that the handsome young man in black robes is working for someone?”, questioned Yeung Yin Siu, wanting to hear Du Fu’s guesses.

    A big grin emerged on Du Fu’s face as he continued, “You mentioned that the handsome young man in black robes used his chi energy to create a large hurricane! There are few people in wulin with this ability! They include, the 5 Storms of the Demon Cult, Yellow Air, the ‘Mo Yung’ family, Sword Saint Unrivalled East, Sabre Saint Immortal West, Gentleman Sword, Chopstick Lee, myself and elite fighters from the Songshan Sect!”.

    “However the only people capable of leaving the red palm marks on a human body are, members from the Demon Cult and the Mo Yung family!”, continued Du Fu with a beaming grin. He was confident that he had been able to narrow the field down.

    “That I already know!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smile.

    “Excellent! Excellent! But there’s something else you may not know! There are few experts in wulin that are a master of disguise and can impersonate anyone they wish! One of them is the ‘shape changer’ Yellow Air of the Demon Cult. The other that comes to mind is Mo Yung Bak the 22 year old son of the ‘Mo Yung’ family! Both of them are only subordinates within their respectful clans! So obviously they were working for someone!”, concluded Du Fu with a beaming grin.

    “Mo Yung Bak! I’m going to make him pay for this!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu inwardly as he clenched his fists tightly. He refused to believe that Tit Yum Ching would do something to harm his reputation. So he figured it must have been an orthodox clan member looking to impersonate him to cause some trouble to get rid of Bak Fung Wan as the Chancellor of Wulin.

    “Who do you suppose Mo Yung Bak is working for then? Obviously Yellow Air would be working for the Chancellor of the Demon Cult!”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew whilst casting a glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    Shifting his glance to Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu continued, “That I have no idea! The ‘Mo Yung’ family have always been secretive about their allegiance! They are obviously on the side that’s most profitable to them!”.

    Looking at the dead bodies on the ground, Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “I’ve checked all of the deceased bodies. Some of them died from the black widow poison, others seemed to have struck by the short dog beating sticks of the Beggar Clan, and the others died from the broad sword!”.

    “Very good!”, replied Du Fu looking at Yeung Yin Siu in some awe. In his mind Du Fu had always considered himself to be the most intelligent person in wulin. He was pleasantly surprised that there was someone who was equal in intelligence.

    “Indeed you’re correct! Beggar Clan members have participated in this bloody murder along with the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins, Lion Prestige Escort, and the Kunlun Sect!”, continued Du Fu was pointing at the various bodies on the ground.

    “How do you know for certain that the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect were also involved?”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew whilst standing to the side.

    “I’m not 100% certain. However, even though all of these clean wounds have been created by the broad sword. The thin long wounds are created by the broad swords commonly wielded by members of the Kunlun Sect and the thicker and shorter wounds are created by those normally wielded by the Lion Prestige Escort!”, replied Du Fu. He was a an expert at the weaponry of the orthodox clans. Yeung Yin Siu wasn’t and thus was not able to distinguish between the cuts made by the broad swords.

    But before they could discuss the matter any further four people arrived from the dirt track carrying a carriage. The four young ladies were dressed in green robes. They each carried a short bamboo stick by the right side of the waist. There appeared to be a young lady sitting in the carriage.

    “Young miss, there are a number of dead bodies along the bridge! There are three people standing before us! There’s a young scholar in grey robes, an old bearded man, and a young lady in a green dress!”, shouted one the ladies in green as she stopped in her tracks.

    “Brother is that you? Who are these people? Why are they here? What happened?”, the voice of a young lady could suddenly be heard asking. The tone of her voice was cold and chilling.

    “Sister it’s me Du Fu! I apologise at not having visited you in over two years! But I’m here now!”, replied Du Fu as he raced up to the carriage.

    Pointing a finger at Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu said, “Those two people are my friends! As to what happened here, I’ll tell you about it later!”.

    “Brother, enough. I don’t want to see any uninvited guests! You can tell your friends to leave immediately! You’re welcome of course. I’ll see you tonight”, interrupted the young lady in the carriage.

    “What are you waiting for? Proceed forward!”, continued the young lady giving orders to her servants.

    Moments later the carriage crossed over the yellow bamboo bridge before disappearing into the green bamboo forest. Du Fu immediately raced up to Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu. He said in an apologetic tone, “Please forgive my sister! She has a very bad temper! She doesn’t trust anyone who she does not personally know! I was going to invite both of you in for tea! But I am not the master here!”.

    Putting a hand up in the air to indicate that he was not offended, Yeung Yin Siu said, “That’s okay! We have other business at hand in any case! Perhaps we’ll catch up for a drink another time!”.

    “Definitely!”, replied Du Fu cupping his hands together.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew was just about to walk off when Du Fu raced up to the side of them. He said, “I’ll also be heading to Shaolin in a weeks time to attend the summit as a member of the Wudang Sect! I’ll inform everyone that the Fisherman Ho who has been creating trouble for the past two months is nothing but an imposter!”.

    “Thank you for your good intentions! But I doubt that they will trust your word alone!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu giving a loud sigh.

    “What are you going to do then?”, questioned Du Fu in a curious voice.

    “My name will never be cleared until I capture the real imposter and get him to confess in front of all of the heroes that attend the summit at Shaolin!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Do you have a plan in mind?”, asked Du Fu.

    “Yes! The Mo Yung family have always pride themselves on defeating an opponent using their own skills and abilities against them! I’ll do the same! As with Yellow Air! I’ve got him covered. I’ll find out sooner or later whether he has any part to play in this!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu in a very confident tone.

    “Goodbye! And wish you the best of luck! I’ll see you at Shaolin then!”, replied Du Fu before turning around. Moments later he disappeared into the green bamboo forest.

    “Goodbye!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew simultaneously before turning to leave. They were no longer worried about the deceased Beggar Clan members on the ground, as Du Fu had already made the necessary arrangements.

    Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu slowly made their way back to the city of Hennan hand in hand to admire the scenery and the country side. A street noodle vendor was set up underneath a tall old willow tree in a clearing near a small lake. It was no lunchtime and they were very hungry. Pulling over a seat, Yeung Yin Siu ordered two bowls of steamed black duck noodles. He took out a small blue bag before handing over a couple of coins to the street vendor. The street vendor returned moments later with two bowls in his hands. Picking up a pair of chopsticks, Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “Do you realise that this is the first time in 2 months that we have been able to eat something other than those dam stinky white fish!”.

    Smiling, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “You’re right! I never thought steamed black duck noodle would taste this good as she continued eating!”.

    Moments later they heard the frantic cries of “Help me! Please help me!”, in the distance as a pretty young girl ran towards the noodle street vending store. One could now see that she was being hotly pursued by a man wearing a bright golden robe with a dragon embroided on the front riding on a white horse. Around 40 armoured men followed closely behind the rider as guards. Each of the men held a long spear in hand. It was obvious that the rider man was a relative of the current Emperor of China by the way he dressed.

    Not long after the pretty young girl reached the street vending store before calling out frantically, “Help! Please help me!”. But no one dared help her upon recognising the rider.

    Placing a hand on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulders, Yeung Yin Siu said, “Don’t go anywhere! I’ll be right back!”, before suddenly disappearing out of sight.

    By now the rider and his 40 guards had reached and surrounded the street noodle vending store. The customers tried their best to dash away, but the guards prevented them from doing so. Stepping forward the rider shouted whilst fixing a gaze at the young girl, “Ha! Ha! Ha! Do you really think that you alone can defy my orders? I’m related to the Emperor! I may therefore do as I wish! You’re all my loyal subjects!”.

    Waving a hand to his guards he continued, “Surround her! Since she kicked me earlier today! I’m going to rape her now in front of all these people! Hold her!”.

    Seeing that many of the people had tried to rush off, the rider said in a loud voice, “Sit back down! Anyone who tries to leave will die! You’re all going to witness what happens to a young lady who doesn’t listen to my orders!”.

    “Sir, please don’t! Please don’t! What have I done wrong?”, asked the pretty lady in a frantic voice. Four guards had now surrounded her and were bending her over an empty table.

    “Ha! Ha! Ha! What have you done wrong? Who asked you to be so pretty! It’s your own dam fault! I must therefore have you!”, replied the rider with a smirk as he began undressing himself.

    Bak Tin Kiew decided to turn her head away at this point not wanting to see the rider undress himself. She had wanted to draw her sword, but her pressure points had somehow been sealed. She suddenly realised that Yeung Yin Siu had anticipated that she would want to act and thus sealed her pressure points when he placed a hand over her shoulders. Bak Tin Kiew cursed inwardly, “What is big brother Yeung doing? Is he just going to let this innocent young girl get raped?”.

    Just at this moment a man wearing a torn black robe and a plain black mask stepped forward from behind the bushes. Bak Tin Kiew panic slightly upon seeing the masked man. He was dressed exactly like the masked man who had ambushed them earlier.

    “Ha! Ha! Ha! Who’s this insignificant little pest before my eyes!”, mocked the masked man walking towards the golden rider. Upon hearing the voice, Bak Tin Kiew became a little relieved. It was none other than Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Insignificant! Do you know who this is?”, shouted one of the guards pinning the girl down by the arms.

    “He’s probably only a country bumpkin who doesn’t know who he’s messing with!”, mocked the guard holding the girl down by the right arm.

    “Messing with the Emperor’s brother! He must looking for an early death!”, mocked the man holding the pretty girl’s right leg.

    “Humph! So what if you’re the Emperor’s brother! You eat, breathe fresh air, and drink water in order to survive! You bleed just like any other man! The only thing that makes you different is that people recognise and bestow a title upon you! That title of yours only means something if others do not recognise it! Regardless when you die, your flesh will just be meat for the maggots like the rest of us! Now let that young girl go!”, demanded Yeung Yin Siu whilst pointing this long stick forward.

    “Let go? You must be joking right! Who are you and how dare you interfere in my business, which in turn is the Emperor of China’s business?”, replied the golden rider in an arrogant tone. He ignored the masked man and was now proceeding towards the pretty young girl who hand been bent over the table.

    “Oh! Such big titles! I’m really scared! At the end of the day when one decides to kill another without fear of death or for one’s own life! The value of grand titles and all of the riches in the world would not mean a thing! As you’d die in any case! The only thing that can save you is if you’re an immortal! Then no one is capable of killing you!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    Hearing no response from the golden rider, the Yeung Yin Siu stepped forward, “Now hear this! I want you to remember! I am Mo Yung Bak of Nanjing in the Nan Zhili province! Prepare to die!”.

    “Why did big brother Yeung say that he was Mo Yung Bak? Why isn’t he taking credit for this heroic deed?”, thought Bak Tin Kiew inwardly.

    As he said the word ‘die’, he leapt up in the air and spun at 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane. It knocked the 40 guards and the golden rider off his feet. Utilising his lightness he zipped through the crowd of fallen guards and the golden rider before smashing hard with his stick against their chest. He only utilised 10% of his inner energy in the attacks. But all of the 40 guards and the golden rider coughed up a mouthful of blood and had been injured seriously. Even Yeung Yin Siu had become a little surprise at the level of his inner energy.

    Standing over the golden rider, Yeung Yin Siu, stampeded his face with his boot before starting to drive his head into the ground. He said, “Ha! Ha! Ha! Brother of the Emperor! Even with 40 guards! Doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to do any good to protect you! Here’s your lunch! Does the earth taste any good? Or should I find some dog turd for you to feed on?”.

    Still managing to curse, the golden rider said, “How dare you offend me! You’ll pay for this! I swear you’ll die a terrible death!”.

    “Humph! Your life is now at my mercy! Yet you still believe you’re in control! We’ll have to see about that!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with an evil grin. His eyes sharpened as he suddenly felt powerful and in control. He was a little shocked by it. But yet he somehow liked it. How was he to know that his father’s crazy blood flowed through his veins and had been pumped through his heart.

    Seeing that the guards had now been knocked out. Many of the customers attempted to run away. Zipping his stick into the air to block the path of those escaping before catching it again in his grasp, Yeung Yin Siu said in a mocking tone, “Eh! I’d like everyone to stay! I’m having a friendly chat with the Emperor’s brother! I’d like everyone to hear it!”.

    None of the customers dared to leave upon seeing the awesome display of kung fu. They remained seated. Leaning down, Yeung Yin Siu decided to punch the golden rider in the right and left eye, leaving behind two black bruises. He then decided to pluck the hair from the head of the golden rider one by one. The golden rider cursed and screamed in pain each time. It took around 20 minutes when Yeung Yin Siu had plucked all of the black hair from atop the golden rider’s head. He was now totally bald and was bleeding in several places.

    Grabbing the golden rider by the throat before slapping him hard across the face, Yeung Yin Siu said, “I bet you thought it was really fun when you wanted to rape that young pretty girl! Well you can bury that thought in your mind forever as you’ll never have that opportunity again! Today I am going to teach you a lesson you’ll never forget! Don’t mess me eccentric personalities of this world when they’re in a bad mood regardless of who you are!”.

    Taking a knife he suddenly sliced down towards the golden rider’s groin. He screamed a terrifying scream that echoed through the valley. It lasted for a long while. Moments later the gold rider passed out from the pain.

    Bak Tin Kiew was in total disbelief at this moment in time. The Yeung Yin Siu she had known thus far had been nothing but a true gentleman despite all of his cheek. She was slightly afraid upon seeing his darker side sudden emerge before her eyes. He had appeared to have gone made with rage and loss all of his sense. Her pressure points suddenly released as she rushed to grab Yeung Yin Siu by the hands, Bak Tin Kiew gasped, “Enough! You’ve made him suffer enough already! I’m afraid!”.

    “Afraid? You’re afraid? What can you possibly be afraid of? I Mo Yung Bak fear nothing!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu in a booming voice so that everyone could hear. He gave a glare back at Bak Tin Kiew. His eyes were full of rage. Bak Tin Kiew shivered upon seeing the anger built up in his eyes. She rushed back to her seat and remained quite. She no longer dared to upset Yeung Yin Siu any further at this moment in time.

    Turning his attention back to the golden rider, Yeung Yin Siu kicked him a few times in the ribs to wake him up before shouting, “Hear this now brother of the Emperor! You can lead your entire garrison to Nanjing for revenge if you wish! I Mo Yung Bak do not fear you!”.

    With this he grabbed onto Bak Tin Kiew’s hands before utilising his lightness kung fu to flee from the scene. They could hear the pretty young girl shouting behind them, “Big hero! Thank you!”.

    Suddenly stopping underneath a big willow tree, Yeung Yin Siu said, “Kiew yee, I don’t know what happened back there! It got out of hand! I’m sorry if I scared you!”.

    One could see that his body and his hands were shaking wildly. His heart was pounding fast as hot blood rushed through his veins. He did not know why he had acted so ruthlessly and behaved so wildly. It was as if a wild animal caged up inside his heart for centuries had been unleashed. Cold sweat dripped down his back as he remembered the line from the poem about the 5 Greats that said, “The ‘Northern Dragon’, now hidden, will soon appear. The other four greats will have reasons to fear”.

    “Shh! Shh! Don’t worry!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew in a gentle voice as she hugged tightly onto Yeung Yin Siu. They rested that way for around another 30 minutes before getting on their way again.

    On the way back to the city of Hennan, Yeung Yin Siu had undertaken a number of other mischievous acts under the false name of Mo Yung Bak. He had injured various members of the Black Cliff Mountain Robbers before stealing all of their gold and jewels. He picked fights with members from the Hengshan Sect, Zhongnan Sect, 5 Poisons Sect, and various Demon Cult members. He virtually picked fights with anyone who knew kung fu who crossed his path. Demanding that if they wanted to look for him for revenge they could go to Nanjing and seek him out. Yeung Yin Siu figured that if someone was going to use his name and create a series of mischief throughout wulin, he may as well do the same. He wanted to drive the imposter out of hiding. Once he captured the imposter he had a number of tortures in mind to force him into confessing in front of all the heroes at Shaolin. He figured that his guess of Mo Yung Bak was correct, given that the wise and knowledgable Du Fu had also come up with the same answer.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew managed to arrive back at the city of Hennan around 6.00pm in the evening. It was now getting very dark and they decided to rest at the Golden Dragon Inn. Walking up to the manager, Yeung Yin Siu decided to ask, “Manager, around two months ago a young lady who booked a room here had a stable boy take care of a wolf named Black Snow! Did she ever return to collect it?”.

    The manager searched deep into his memory before replying, “Someone did come and collect the wolf I recall! Whether it was your friend! I’m not certain!”.

    “Ah! So Siu Wai is safe!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu as a smiled appeared on his face.

    “Did you see a young looking lady wearing a white dress pass through here around two months ago? Her hair had turned all white! So she won’t be hard to recognise!”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew to the side.

    “She would have been with a pretty lady wearing a red dress, purple dress, and black dress. There would also be a number of men with them dressed in black robes with red trimmings! Each of the men would be wearing a red cape on their backs!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu upon noticing that the manager had been searching deep in his mind.

    “You mean the warriors from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins and the females from the 7 Vixens?”, replied the manager.

    “Yes!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew together.

    “I did see some of them pass through here! But not all at the same time! I remember many of them were asking whether I had seen the others as well that were with them as well! You two are the last ones to ask me that exact same question!”, remarked the manager.

    “It’s okay! Could we have a room for two please!”, asked Yeung Yin Siu all of a sudden upon thinking that Siu Wai, Fung Lau Yin, Fung Mun Kit, Kiu Pin Fok and the others were okay.

    “Why certainly! Under which name?”, replied the hotel manager casting a suspicious look at Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu. They did not look like husband and wife.

    “I am Mo Yung Bak, and this is my sister Mo Yung Kiew!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk. He had guessed what was on the manager’s mind.

    “Okay! Last room on the East Wing!”, replied the hotel manager pointing towards the sign that said “East Wing”.

    Blushing slightly as they walked up the stairs, Bak Tin Kiew decided to ask, “Big brother Yeung, why did you only book one room for the two of us?”.

    Smiling for the first time since the encounter with the golden robed man, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “It’s the cheapest and safest way to be staying at the Golden Dragon Inn over night! Who knows what may happen at this Inn on any given night!”.

    After settling into their room, Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu went out to the restaurant for dinner. Yeung Yin Siu ordered plates of fried rice, roast beef and pork, along with a few dim sims. He had enough of eating seafood for the past two months. It was still early in the evening so the restaurant was not yet full. Glancing left and right, Yeung Yin Siu noticed something odd. To the left of them sat two odd looking men. One of the men was a bold man in his late 30s. He wore the standard white robe with red trimmings with a half red crescent moon embroided on the top right hand corner. A large pair of metallic scissors rested to the right hand side of this man. The other man that sat at the table was a giant of a man. In his late 40s. He looked very much like a human meatball. He had a rounded face and his limbs were rather short. His skin appeared to be very oily. His white robes had been stained in red blood. A large machete rested on his right hand side.

    “Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon! What are they doing here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly upon seeing the two men. Both of these men were the Regional Commanders of the Demon Cult from the South. So it was strange indeed that they had remained in the North of China for so long after the annual general meeting. He continued eating with his head down. None of the men recognised him because of the beard he had grown.

    Moments later a third man entered the restaurant. Pulling over a chair he joined, Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon. Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this person. It was none other than Cannibal Chung.

    “The Chancellor sent me to see if you two had managed to scout any further news as to the location of Fisherman Ho! Do you have any news to report?”, asked Cannibal Chung in a curious voice as he leant forward.

    Glancing around the room to check if anyone was listening, Crazy Barber Wu replied, “Fisherman Ho! Fisherman Ho! Why on earth is the Chancellor so concerned about stinky Fisherman Ho?”.

    “Eh! Brother Wu, that’s none of your business! Don’t be so nosy! Tell me what you two uncovered!”, repeated Cannibal Chung looking rather annoyed.

    “Rumours have it that Fisherman Ho just recently just murdered Beggar Hung, the Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan and Leader of the Dirty Beggar Faction!”, replied Butcher Poon.

    “Apparently he has also taken the jade bamboo stick and has disappeared!”, continued Crazy Barber Wu.

    “But I suspect that he’s still in Hennan!”, interrupted Butcher Poon.

    “Good work! I’ll tell her personally when she arrives!”, replied Cannibal Chung.

    “She’s coming here tonight?”, asked Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon together in shock. Tit Yum Ching had not left the Demon Valley since becoming the Chancellor of the Demon Cult. So this was indeed a great surprise to them that she would leave for something so minor.

    “Eh! That’s none of your business! Your mission here is now finished. The Chancellor has a new assignment for the two of you when you return to the South of China!”, continued Cannibal Chung in an authoritative tone.

    “I’ll confront Tit Yum Ching tonight!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly.

    “What are the Chancellor’s orders then? We’ll do our best to accomplish it!”, asked the Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon in a curious voice.

    “I’m not allow to say! It’s written in this envelope! It’s a secret mission that only myself, the 7 Fingered Demon Flute, 3 Fingered Demon Zither, and the Chancellor knows about! Remember the walls have ears!”, remarked Cannibal Chung as he passed the envelope over to Crazy Barber Wu, before taking a glance around the room.

    Opening the letter and reading its contents before passing it over to Butcher Poon, Crazy Barber Wu remarked, “Excellent! The Chancellor is really clever! I’ll make sure it’s done!”.

    “Excellent! Please reassure the Chancellor that she has chosen the right people for this mission! Even if I die, I’ll make sure this mission gets accomplished!”, agreed Butcher Poon before placing the letter in his mouth and eating its contents.

    “Eh! Brother Poon! Was the letter a good entree?”, asked Cannibal Chung with a smile upon seeing that Butcher Poon had eaten the later.

    Smiling slightly, Butcher Poon replied, “Talking about food! I have something special for you before I go!”.

    Taking a large basket in his hands before opening it to take a look, Cannibal Chung remarked, “Excellent! The finest cut of raw human meat! I’ll make good use of it! Goodbye!”.

    “Goodbye!”, cupping their hands together said, Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon before getting up to leave. Moments later they utilise their lightness kung fu before disappearing from sight.

    End of Chapter 13.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

  15. #55
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    Default Chapter 13: Mysterious Events (full version)

    Chapter 13: Mysterious Events

    The breeze is gently blowing on the outskirts of Hennan around an hour walk from the main city centre. There is an open field full of lush green grass on either side of a dirt track. A large herd of cattle and sheep could been seen grazing on the grass tended by a small farm boy. A small river of crystal clear water runs through the field of corn before intersecting the small dirt track in the distance ahead. A small bridge made up of long yellow bamboo sticks rests above the bank of the river, allowing travellers to cross it from the small dirt track leading them into a dark forest full of tall and skinny green bamboo trees. From a distance one could see that a handsome young man in black robes was fast approaching the small bamboo bridge. He takes a quick glance over his shoulders before increasing his speed. Seconds later he arrives at the bridge. But his face seems to carry an uneasy disposition as he suddenly stops in his tracks. Sweat starts forming on his forehead as he hesitates to cross over the bridge before him. Turning around he could see in the distance around 50 men wearing torn and weathered grey robes pursuing after him. They were getting closer and closer. Yet the handsome young man in black robes decides not cross the bridge.

    Glancing nervously at the writing carved into a large grey rock by the side of the river, he reads the words out loud, “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring”.

    Suddenly the handsome young man in black robes decides to turn around and stood in an attacking position holding onto the jade bamboo stick with his hands out stretched. He did not fear seem to fear the abilities of the 50 men pursuing after him. But he did appear to fear the opponent before him. So he chose not to enter the bamboo forest, deciding to take his chances with the men pursuing after him. Not long after the 50 men pursuing the young man in black robes caught up before standing 10 paces away. They immediately surrounded him and made sure that they blocked off all possible escape routes.

    A tall and well-built man in his late 60s decided to step forward from the crowd. One could notice that there were 9 bags stitched to the right hand side of his torn grey robes. He was obviously a District Commander of the Beggar Clan. He carried a short dog beating stick in his right hand. His eyes were sharp like that of a hawk. His face was red as he appeared to be in a little bit of a rage.

    Speaking in a loud booming voice he said, “Fisherman Ho! You’ve murdered our Deputy Chief, Beggar Hung and have stolen his jade bamboo stick! Give yourself up now! You have no where else to go!”.

    “Beggar Jong! You want me to give myself up? You’ve got to be joking! I’ve never thought of that!”, replied the handsome young man in black robes as he charged forward to attack the Beggar Clan members.

    “What a devil! Attack!”, shouted Beggar Jong as he waved his stick in the air. He leapt backwards to stand 5 paces away to direct the formation.

    Thirty-six of the Beggar Clan members stepped forward and formed the ‘Capturing the Wild Dog’ formation. It was a formation designed to capture an elite fighter without harming them. It was not intended to kill. The purpose of the formation is to seal all of the opponent’s pressure points before trapping them with their short dog hitting sticks.

    “Beggar Jong! Watch carefully! It’ll be the last time you’ll see this move!”, shouted the handsome young man in black robes in a very arrogant tone. Suddenly he twisted his body and spun in 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane.

    The force created by the chi energy knocked most of the Beggar Clan members off their feet. This indicated that even at such a young age the handsome young man in black robes possessed a high level of inner energy. Before any of the Beggar Clan members had a chance to respond, the handsome young man had already reached into his pockets. He grabbed a number of tiny silver needle projectiles before shooting them out towards the Beggar Clan members whilst still spinning in a 360 degree cycle. His projectile throwing technique was very precise and accurate.

    Moments later all of the 50 Beggar Clan members cried out, “Ah Ya!”, upon feeling a burning sensation in their eyes. Blood began pouring from both eye sockets before flowing down onto their face and neck. They were struggling to stand up right against the powerful force of the black hurricane, and thus they could not use their sticks to block the projectiles launched at them. Furthermore they had only intended to capture the handsome young man in black robes for questioning and not really want to kill him. So they were slightly caught off guard They could have never guess that the handsome young man in black robes would have been so ruthless towards them. He displayed no mercy what so ever.

    The 50 odd Beggar Clan members now rolled along the ground as the screamed in pain whilst holding their eyes. They could now only see darkness and gasped out in panic, “What a devil! What a devil!”.

    The majority of Beggar Clan members expected death moments later upon realising that they had been defeated. But the handsome young man in black robes did not take any action against them. Instead he stood there and laughed out loud. He said, “Ha! Ha! Who would have thought the Beggar Clan is so useless!”.

    Waving the jade dog beating stick about, he continued, “The jade dog beating stick is now mine! I heard a rule in the Beggar Clan that the person who holds the jade bamboo stick in hand is the Chief. So I guess I’m now your new Chief! Anyone who can defeat me can claim the leadership and the jade dog beating stick back! But until then, anyone who dares to defy my orders will suffer the same fate as everyone here today!”.

    Pointing the jade do beating stick forward in triumph he said, “Now get your miserable faces from my sight! I want all of you to spread the news throughout both the ‘Dirty’ and the ‘Clean’ Beggar Faction, that I Fisherman Ho am now the new Chief of the Beggar Clan! I will therefore attend and represent the Beggar Clan at the forum held at Shaloin in a few weeks time to discuss the position of Chancellor of Wulin!”.

    The 50 odd Beggar Clan members did not respond. They just kept rolling on the ground whilst crying out loud, “My eyes! My eyes! You bastard! You’ve blinded me!”.

    The handsome young man just kept on smiling. He stopped smiling upon turning around and taking a glance at the green bamboo forest behind him. Moments later he motioned to utilise his lightness kung fu in an attempt to dash off. It appeared for some reason that the handsome young man in black robes had wanted to get as far away from the “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring” as possible after his triumph.

    “Hold it! You’re not going anywhere!”, shouted an old bearded man wearing torn and weathered black robes as he approached the bridge. He carried only a long and thick stick in his right hand.

    Moments later a young girl wearing a white facemask and a torn and weathered green dress rushed up by his side. She was carrying a long white sword in her right hand.

    Looking a little puzzled as to the identities of the two people before him, the handsome young man in black robes shouted in an arrogant tone, “Who the heck are you two? How dare you interfere in Fisherman Ho’s business? You must be tired of living!”,

    Stepping forward the old beared man said, “Who am I? I should be asking you that question instead! Fisherman Ho’s business is my business! Therefore I must interfere!”.

    Pointing his old stick forward the old beared man demanded, “Who the heck are you? Speak!”.

    Smiling proudly the handsome young man in black robes said in a very arrogant tone, “You want to know who I am? If you can defeat me! Then I’ll tell you! But you’ll never have the opportunity!”.

    With that the handsome young man in black robes twisted his body and spun in 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane once more in an attempt to knock both of his opponents off their feet. He was successful against the young girl in green wearing a white mask. Such was the force being generated by the handsome young man in black robes that she immediately fell on her backside and struggled to get up.

    The old beared man stood with his arms folded. His hair was blowing wildly in the hurricane created by the chi energy from the handsome young man in black robes. Walking forward he said in a mocking tone, “Young man, you’re indeed very talented! When it’s summer my house often gets very hot! I wonder whether you’d be kind enough to come over during the hot summer days to create this small hurricane to relieve me from all of the hot air. You’d be a great human fan!”.

    “Why you…”, shouted the handsome young man in black robes, clearly not impressed by the old bearded man’s comments.

    The handsome young man in black robes suddenly stoped spinning in endless cycles. He immediately stepped forward and striked out with the jade bamboo stick aiming for the mid stomach of the old bearded man. Suddenly the old bearded man appeared to have twisted his body right. The he suddenly appeared in front of the handsome young man in black robe’s face before twisting left and then right again. It happened so fast that it appeared as if the old bearded man had suddenly separated into three people. The handsome young man in black robes became frozen on the spot as he watched the stances carefully unfolding before his eyes. His attack striked nothing but air despite having appeared to slash through the mid stomach region of the image of the old bearded man before him.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried the handsome young man in black robes moments later. He had been struck three times on the right hand. It suddenly felt numb as he lost all of the strength and immediately dropped the jade bamboo stick onto the floor.

    A little bit of fear gripped the handsome young man in black robes at this moment as he mumbled, “Who… Who… Who on earth are you? There’re… They’re… They’re very few people in wulin capable of defeating me!”.

    “Who I am is not important! But you’re very much mistaken about your abilities! You’re skills aren’t even a match for the top 50 fighters in all of wulin!”, remarked bearded old man as he picked the jade bamboo stick off the floor before passing it over to the young lady in green for safe keeping.

    Pointing his stick forward, the old bearded man suddenly demanded, “Well I’ve defeated you! Now it’s time for you to tell me who you are? Please tell me now!”.

    The handsome young man in black robes did not reply. He was looking rather dejected at having just been beaten so easily by the old bearded man. He did not even last one stance of the old bearded man’s unique sword arts and yet he was able to defeat 50 Beggar Clan members so easily.

    Hearing no response, the old bearded man continued whilst pointing his long stick forward towards the handsome young man in black robe’s Adam’s apple pressure point, “Well who the heck are you? Speak now! Or die!”.

    “I’m…”, replied the handsome young man in black robes before stopping short. A number of swishing sound suddenly echoed through the air as a sea of tiny shiny metal objects had been launched towards the old bearded man, and the young lady in green.

    “What the heck! How shameful! Ambushing one from behind!”, cursed the old bearded man as he dodged from left to right before blocking most of the projectiles launched at him.

    Looking up he noticed that the young girl in green had been able to defend herself from the surprise attack. A smile flashed across his face upon seeing this. But he was caught by total surprise upon seeing that a number of projectiles had also been launched at the handsome young man in black robes. The old bearded man had initially thought that the handsome young man in black robes and the men who had just ambushed them were in league with each other. But it was now obvious that they were not.

    “What on earth is going on? Who’s that handsome young man in black robes? Who are these people now launching an ambush attack at us?”, thought the old bearded as he continued using the long stick to block the incoming projectiles.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried some of the Beggar Clan members who had been crawling on the ground. They had just been blinded and so could not tell the direction in which the projectiles were coming from. Many of them were struck by a projectile as a result as they could not dodge from the ambush attack.

    The handsome young man in black robes was more than capable of dodging all of the projectiles launched in the air. Suddenly he launched a palm attack and managed to catch the young girl in green off guard. He had struck her on the right shoulder before recovering the jade bamboo stick in his hands. Moments later the handsome young man in black robes utilised his lightness kung fu and rushed off into the distance. Around six masked man wearing black robes and a black mask suddenly appeared in view before pursuing after the handsome young man in black robes. The young girl picked herself off from the ground clutching onto her right shoulder. She wasn’t seriously injured, but was suffering a little shocked at having been struck by a palm.

    The old bearded man was going to chase after the handsome young man in black robes, but he was stopped in his tracks once more as a number of projectiles were launched against him from behind. By the time he had blocked all of the projectiles launched against him, the handsome young man in black robes and the many masked men pursuing after him had disappeared from sight.

    Half of the 50 Beggar Clan members crawling along the ground had now been struck by a projectile and died instantly. It was a sign that the projectiles launched at them contained some deadly poison. All that could be heard at this moment in time was the remaining 25 Beggar Clan members still crawling around the ground crying out in pain, “My eyes! My eyes! I can’t believe I’m blind! That bastard!”.

    Suddenly it became quite. The projectiles being launched in the air had ceased. It appeared as if the various people who had surrounded the old bearded man and the young girl in green had taken off and retreated. But the old bearded man remained cautious and did not put his guard down. He was sure there were still various men hiding around the scrubs to the side of the bamboo forest waiting to ambush them. Turning left and right he listened in closely to detect possible sounds of danger. Suddenly he heard some faint rustling from the bushes behind him. The old bearded man immediately leapt forward in that direction with his long stick pointed forwards in an attacking position. He saw a medium built man wearing a black robe and a plain black mask rushing away. He appeared to be like a black shadow as he ran. It looked very much like the lightness kung fu of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins.

    “Gwai Mo Ming?”, thought the old bearded man to himself as he pursued after the masked man.

    He could now hear someone yelling from behind him, “Wait for me!”. It was the voice of the young girl in green as she pursued after them. But her voice was now some distance away. In indication that the masked man and the old bearded man possessed some exceptional lightness kung fu. They had travelled a great distance in a short space of time.

    “The masked man is indeed an elite fighter!”, though the old bearded man as he gave chase.

    Turning his attention back to the young girl in green, the old bearded man frantically shouted back in a booming voice, “No! Stay where you are! Don’t leave the blind Beggar Clan members! Protect them and make sure they’re safe from harm! We’ll need them alive to find out what happened here!”.

    “Okay!”, shouted the young girl in green as she turned to rush back to the bamboo bridge.

    Moments later the old bearded man could hear the frantic clashing of swords back at the bamboo bridge. It was followed by loud cries and shrieks seconds later. It appeared as if a number of men had suddenly been butchered to death. He thought inwardly, “Dam! The ‘tiger mountain trick’. That masked man was only luring me away!”.

    Giving it no further thought he immediately rushed back to help the young girl in green. He knew that her abilities were far lower than the men who had launched the ambush attack at the Beggar Clan members. Upon returning to the scene he heard the young girl in green could be heard crying out in pain, “Ah Ya!”. A man wearing black robes and a black mask had just hit her with a palm across the left shoulder.

    There were actually ten masked men now surrounding the young girl in green. Moments later the masked man that had struck the young girl in green immediately utilises his lightness kung fu. He took off upon seeing that the old bearded man had returned. The other 9 masked men followed him closely behind. The old bearded man attempted to give chase. But he was met with a sea of tiny little projectiles being launched at him and the young girl in green. Seeing the urgent situation, he rushed up to grab the young girl in green by the hands, before jumping into the small river below the bamboo bridge. The tiny projectiles narrowly missed them both.

    “Brother Yeung! I’m glad you’ve returned! I was so scared!”, remarked the young girl in green as she leant forward to give the old bearded man a firm hug.

    “Eh! Kiew yee, I’m glad you’re safe! I should have never left you alone!”, replied the old bearded man holding onto the young girl in green.

    It was now obvious underneath the clear daylight that the old bearded man was none other than Yeung Yin Siu, and the young girl in green was none other than Bak Tin Kiew. They had spent the past hour slowly pursuing after the handsome man in black robes. They had done this deliberately, as they wanted to see what the intentions of that handsome young man had been, and why he had impersonated Fisherman Ho. But they could never have guessed that he would have been so ruthless. So they managed to arrive too late to help the Beggar Clan members.

    Moments later Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew leapt back up onto the small bamboo bridge. Picking up a small projectile before placing it under his nose to smell it, Yeung Yin Siu, suddenly remarked, “Black widow poison!”.

    “What? Isn’t she dead?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew in amazement.

    “The Black Widow Assassin is definitely dead! But someone has managed to obtain her deadly poisons formula and managed to recreate the poison!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a look of concern on his face. He knew the black widow poison was virtually incurable. Only the black scorpion poison can cancel out the effects of the black widow poison. But according to Mischievous Monk there are many side effects involved as a result of that cancelling process.

    “Big brother Yeung, I suspect this group of masked men must have been at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult! Or they must be somehow connected to the Demon Cult!”, remarked Bak Tin Kiew picking up a needle off the ground to smell it herself.

    Nodding his head in agreement, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “Yes, it’s certain that those men attended the annual general meeting! But they may not necessarily be Demon Cult members! They could have just infiltrated the Demon Cult on that particular day!”.

    “Or they could be members from the…”, continued Yeung Yin Siu before stopping short. He remembered the lightness kung fu being utilised by the masked man and the handsome young man in black robes. He became very concerned.

    “What? Which other clan do you suspect these men to be from?”, questioned Bak Tin Kiew with a curious look on her face.

    “Nothing!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst shaking his head. He was going to say, “13 Ghost Mountain Assassins”, but he still didn’t believe in his heart that they could be capable of doing such an act. Nor did he believe that they harbour ambitions of world domination.

    Yeung Yin Siu had grown up under the teachings and wisdom of the Black Bat Assassin. So deep in his heart he knew that members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins were not really that evil at heart. Many of them just had unfortunate lives and thus resorted to becoming assassins to kill for money. It was the only way they knew how to survive. There was a rumour throughout wulin that said, “Just for money! Members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins would even kill their own parents, relatives, and close friends!”. But Yeung Yin Siu knew this was far from the truth. Besides many of the members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins were orphans and had no relatives, and the few friends they had were each other.

    Turning around he decided to ask, “Kiew yee, did you see who removed the Black Widow Assassin’s body from the duelling pit after she was slained by Rain? I was duelling in the next round and did not see what happened?”.

    “No!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew casting an uneasy glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    She gave a long sigh before continuing, “I was too concerned about your safety that I did not pay any attention to what had happened to the Black Widow Assassin!”.

    Giving a long sigh, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Only one person will know for certain who removed the Black Widow Assassin’s body from the duelling pit!”.

    “Who’s that?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in a curious voice.

    “The Chancellor of the Demon Cult herself! Only Tit Yum Ching would know for sure!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he walked over to examine the dead bodies of over 50 Beggar Clan members. The masked men had slained them all and left none alive.

    “Tit Yum Ching? You… You… You want to see her?”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew in a low voice. Her heart suddenly ached a little.

    Not realising that Bak Tin Kiew was a little troubled, Yeung Yin Siu replied in an enthusiastic voice, “Yes! I’m going to arrange a meeting with her tonight when we head back to the Golden Dragon Inn! Besides, I have to return the Iron Blood sword and the Iron Blood arts to her sooner or later!”.

    Bak Tin Kiew did not respond. She kepted silent as she examined some of the dead bodies herself. Being a little inexperienced in wulin, she could not find any clues as to who had ambushed them.

    Hearing no response, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Besides I need to see her for another reason!”.

    “What else do you want to see her about?”, becoming slightly intrigued asked Bak Tin Kiew.

    “I must confront her about something!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu sounding a little uneasy as he remembered the handsome young man in black robes who had impersonated him. He was a no namer in wulin and could not think of the reason, for the time being, as to why anyone would want to impersonate him. So he suspected it had something to do with Tit Yum Ching.

    Not knowing what was on Yeung Yin Siu’s mind at the moment, Bak Tin Kiew asked, “What is it big brother Yeung? You look a little worried!”.

    Seeing the concerned expression on Bak Tin Kiew’s face, Yeung Yin Siu decided to keep what was on his mind a secret. He said whilst grabbing hold of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands, “Oh! It’s really nothing! I just wanted to ask whether she has seen my auntie or uncle that’s all!”.

    “Big brother Yeung! Is that really all you want to discuss with Tit Yum Ching?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew. She was not totally convinced that what Yeung Yin Siu had told her was the truth.

    Yeung Yin Siu did not respond. Letting go of Bak Tin Kiew’s hands he started to examine the injuries on one of the deceased Beggar Clan members on the ground. He remarked, “Interesting! Why would a Beggar Clan member ambush members from his own clan! This is really weird!”.

    “How can you tell that it was a Beggar Clan member who killed this person?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew as she stood over the body to have a closer look.

    Lifting the grey robe away from the right abdomen region to expose the wounds so that Bak Tin Kiew could see. Yeung Yin Siu continued, “See this slash across the right abdomen region! It is not a clean slice like that of created by a sword or a sabre. It is not smooth like that of a wound created by a staff or any other symmetrical weapon! Only a weapon with very rough, jagged, and inconsistent edges are able to create this kind of messy wound! It leads me to conclude that these wounds have been created by the short beating sticks of a Beggar Clan member!”.

    Bak Tin Kiew’s face suddenly turned pale upon seeing the wound on the Beggar Clan member’s body. Her eyes then filled with rage, as emotions of anger over took fear. She cried, “I’ve seen these wounds before as well. It’s similar to one of the wounds on my mother’s deceased body!”.

    “Then it’s certain then that a member from the Beggar Clan participated in murdering your mother!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he placed a hand on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulder to calm her down.

    “Did you manage to see the weapons being wielded by the other masked men who attacked you when I was gone?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu as he went to examine the other bodies on the ground.

    Shaking her head left and right, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “No. I was too focused on defending myself from the attacks launched by the masked man in front of me!”.

    “Well what weapon was that man wielding?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu as he tried to find more clues as to the identities of the other masked men who had just attacked them.

    Searching deep in her mind, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “He was wielding a standard long broad sword!”.

    “Broad sword? What was carved onto the hilt of the sword? Did you see it?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu. Indeed most of the wounds on the remaining bodies were thin and deep cuts, confirming that the standard broad sword created them. Many clans in wulin used this kind of weapon including the Wudang Sect. So it would be difficult to guess the exact clan of the men who attacked them just from these kinds of wounds.

    Shaking her head once more, Bak Tin Kiew remarked, “No. I didn’t manage to see what was carved into the hilt of the sword!”.

    “Then the only real lead we have is that some members of the Beggar Clan had participated in this ambush attack on their own clan members!”, sighed Yeung Yin Siu. He had wanted to uncover much more information. Also, he was greatly disturbed and totally shocked as to why someone would want to impersonate him to create trouble throughout wulin.

    “Big brother Yeung, wait! Come here!”, said Bak Tin Kiew as she looked around to make sure that no one was hiding nearby. She then took off her green top before holding it in her right hand. Moments later she untied her white undergarment to expose her shoulder blade. One could see that she was wearing a yellow brassier underneath, showing off her soft curves and elegant curves.

    “Eh! Kiew yee, what on earth are you doing?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in shock upon seeing that Bak Tin Kiew had partially undressed herself.

    Letting out a little shy laugh, Bak Tin Kiew said, “It’s not what you think! Two palms struck me earlier! I thought that you may be able to recognise these wounds!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu walked up to Bak Tin Kiew to observe the wounds and bruises on the right and left shoulder. But his eyes couldn’t help but wonder occasionally from the shoulder blade across the chest from time to time. There was a big black bruise on Bak Tin Kiew’s left shoulder. But that was to be expected given the force of the strike. But there was nothing unusual about the palm technique or clues left behind that would enable one to guess the identity of the masked man who had executed that palm strike.

    “The Iron Palms? Or could it be the Iron Blood Palms?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought out aloud upon seeing the red palm mark on Bak Tin Kiew’s right shoulders.

    “You recognise them? Then who do you suspect that handsome young man in black robes to be?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew upon hearing Yeung Yin Siu’s thoughts.

    Yeung Yin Siu remained silent for a while. It was obvious who one of the likely suspects were. He replied, “There are only a couple of people in wulin who come to mind with the palm techniques capable of leaving this kind of red mark behind on a human body! They are the Iron Palms of the of the ‘Mo Yung’ family and the Iron Blood Palms of the ‘Tit’ family!”.

    “Tit family? Do you suspect that Tit Yum Ching is somehow connected to the person who impersonated you? I thought the two of you were very good friends!”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in shock.

    “Eh! Tin Kiew, you don’t know that much. The Chancellor only makes friends with the people who can assist her. Also I’m not totally certain that she’s behind all of this! I don’t know whether she or any other Demon Cult member, for that matter, has that level of skill in the Iron Blood Palms! It has also been executed differently to the palm technique that I have copied from the cave! So it may not be the Iron Blood Palms after all!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He did not believe in his heart that Tit Yum Ching would do something to harm his reputation.

    Another thought crossed Yeung Yin Siu’s mind, as he remembered that the ‘5 Elements’ have recently been named as the 5 Guardians of the Demon Cult. Amongst this group of elite fighters was a person by the name of Yellow Air who is renowned as the master ‘shape changer’. It was rumoured throughout wulin that Yellow Air could fold air and bend sunlight to create an illusion. Yellow Air could thus assume any form or impersonate anyone in wulin. No one actually knew whether Yellow Air was a man or woman, such was the level of that persons skills in disguise. All Yellow Air had do to in order to impersonate someone was to look at them to observe their facial features.

    “Why would she want to harm my reputation?”, Yeung Yin Siu suddenly thought to himself as he suddenly felt very uneasy. He was certain that he had guessed correctly. Besides, Yellow Air had seen him at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult.

    Yeung Yin Siu stood deep in thought. His head dropped down slightly and it appeared as if he was now starring directly at Bak Tin Kiew’s chest. But he was actually searching through his mind about all the possible reasons as to why Tit Yum Ching would want to harm his reputation. But he could not come up with one for the time being. He had another thought, “Perhaps its Mo Yung Bak!”.

    Pulling her white undergarment above her shoulders, before dressing herself again, Bak Tin Kiew shouted, “Big brother Yeung, that’s very naughty! What do you think you’re doing? Keep your eyes up where I can see them!”.

    But Yeung Yin Siu did not reply for a long while. He was still lost in thought. Snapping out of his daze before looking up he said, “Eh! Tin Kiew, did you just saying something?”.

    Bak Tin Kiew was just about to respond when she heard the voice of a young girl saying in a very mocking tone, “Who’s the naughty one? Undressing themselves in front of a man in broad daylight! You are the one who should be ashamed of yourself!”.

    Turning around to the source of the voice, Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu suddenly noticed a tiny little girl around the age of 7-8 years of age standing behind them. She was wearing a light grey dress with white trimmings. Her hair had been tied into two piggy tails to the side. A big smile emerged on her face making her look rather cute and adorable.

    “I wonder how long she’s been standing here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly. He was rather shocked at having been unable to detect that someone had approached them. He was an experienced fighter and so should have not been caught off guard so easily as he had just been. What’s more by a 7-8 year old girl. He was rather bemused by this. Bak Tin Kiew on the other hand turned a little red upon hearing the young girl’s comments.

    Looking at the large grey rock towards the side of the bamboo bridge for the first time, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed the words carved into the surface. He thought inwardly, “The Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring! So this is the home of Du Gum Lin, sister of the great Calligraphy Swordsman! No wonder that handsome man in black robes feared going into the forest to escape! None that have entered the forest have come out alive!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was now studying the young girl very carefully. She had seen the various dead bodies on the ground and yet showed no signs of fear. This was very rare indeed. He thought, “Surely this young girl is not Du Gum Lin!”.

    Hearing no response the young girl continued whilst giggling, “You two have better leave! This is no place for secret romances! But I suggest that you both get married before doing anything else !”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to ask the young girl for her name, when someone approached the bridge from the dirt path. He said, “Eh! Ah Sing! Don’t be so rude! I’ve already told you not to make assumptions about people before finding out the truth about who they are and what they are doing first! Then perhaps you’ll understand what this young girl had been doing! It may not necessarily be rude as you may think it to be!”.

    “Also you don’t know whether they’ve actually already married or not! Yet you’ve suggested that they get married before they do anything else! True that your assumptions may prove correct! However by assuming you’ve already labelled and pre-judged a total stranger without even knowing the entire truth! How can you do that? That’s really bad! Haven’t you learnt anything that I’ve taught you for the past 4 years? Judge people on not what you hear! Judge people only on what you know!”, sighed the man in grey robes as he approached Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew.

    One could now see that the man who approached them appeared to be around 27 years of age. A clean grey robe with white trimmings covered his medium built body. His hair was tied neatly at the back with a white scarf. He a had a thin but very handsome face and appeared to be a well-educated man. He was carrying a large bamboo pen in his left hand and a long green bamboo stick in his right hand. A large rectangle bamboo basket had been swung over his shoulders. One could see that it contained a number of scrolls. Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this man as the grey swordsman he had been drinking with in his dreams.

    “Sorry master! I didn’t mean to pre-judge but…”, replied the young girl named Ah Sing as she rushed up to stand besides the man in grey robes.

    Tugging her master by the robe she continued, “Master! Sister Gum Lin is not in at the moment! Her servants suggested that you wait here for her to return! They will not allow us to enter! They were being quite rude to me also!”.

    “Why is she being so secretive at the moment? Even I have to wait here for her to return? You’ve got to be kidding! I’m her elder brother! This is most unlike her!”, remarked the man in grey robes with a worried look on his face. But he knew the temper of his younger sister well. So he gave a sigh and stood where he was.

    Looking around he noticed the many deceased bodies of the Beggar Clan members laying on the ground. Turning to face Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew, he said whilst cupping his hands together, “My name is Du Fu! May I have the pleasure of knowing your names and what business brings you to the Forest of the Lady of the Eternal Spring! Do you have business with my sister?”.

    Stepping forward and cupping his hands together, Yeung Yin Siu introduced himself, “A pleasure to meet you! Your sword arts are famed in the Central regions of China! My surname is ‘Ho’ and first names are ‘Yin Siu’!”.

    Glancing across at Yeung Yin Siu, Bak Tin Kiew thought, “Why does big brother Yeung persist with using the name Ho Yin Siu? Isn’t he afraid that the imposter has already ruined his image?”.

    “My surname is ‘Lok’ and first names are ‘Tin Kiew’!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew whilst cupping her hands. She was still using an alias name.

    “Ho Yin Siu?”, remarked Du Fu out loud to himself. This name did indeed sound very familiar to him. But he did not immediately remember where he had heard of the name.

    “You mean you’re Fisherman Ho?”, shouted Du Fu as he leapt back and drew his green bamboo stick and long bamboo pen in an attacking position.

    “Wait! Please let me explain!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he raised his right hand in an urgent rush.

    “Okay! I’m listening!”, replied Du Fu as he lowered his weapons. He had just given a big lecture to his young apprentice about making assumptions before knowing the entire truth. So he wasn’t about to act rashly and attack without first hearing the other side of the story from the man claiming to be Fisherman Ho. Along his journey he had heard a number of vicious rumours about Fisherman Ho that spread like wild fire. Fisherman Ho’s reputation was now in taters. Most of the shallow people in wulin believed them to be true without finding the truth out for themselves. But Du Fu was by no means a shallow person.

    Moments later Yeung Yin Siu explained in detail the events that had just taken place at the yellow bamboo bridge. He had also explained how he and Bak Tin Kiew had been trapped down a small cave on the outskirts of Hennan for the past two months. He left out the bits about him attending the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult. He also decided not to tell Du Fu about his own guesses about who he thought the handsome young man in black robes, and the masked man who had ambushed them had been. He was interested to hear Du Fu’s own guesses. Du Fu went over and examined all of the 50 deceased bodies on the ground. Moments later, Yeung Yin Siu described the wounds he had just seen on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulder blades to him.

    “Ah Sing! See! What did you learn today? These two weren’t doing anything rude! Nor did they have any romantic thoughts in mind! This young gentleman was just examining the wounds on his friend!”, remarked Du Fu upon hearing the end of Yeung Yin Siu’s story, whilst looking across at his young apprentice. One could tell that Du Fu was greatly troubled by the events. He remained deep in thought.

    “What should we do with these stinky bodies? We can’t leave them here otherwise Sister Gum Lin will get upset!”, interrupted Ah Sing whilst pointing over to all of the deceased bodies.

    “Ah Sing! I want you to go into the city of Hennan and find Rule Elder Beggar Lau! Lead him back here. Tell him these bodies will need to be delivered as evidence in time for the urgent summit at Shaolin!”, replied Du Fu.

    Ah Sing nodded her head and immediately disappeared from sight. One could see that she possessed excellent lightness kung fu, even for someone at such a young age.

    “Urgent summit at Shaolin? What’s happening there?”, asked Bak Tin Kiew in shock. She had never heard about this summit before. But she knew that her father normally resides over all wulin matters on behalf of all of the orthodox clans. Most summits were held at Taishan and no Shaolin. So she wanted to know what the summit was about.

    “You two have been trapped down in a cave for two months! So no wonder you don’t know about the urgent summit held at Shaolin!”, remarked Du Fu.

    Giving a long sigh, Du Fu continued, “The Chiefs, and Clan Leaders of all the orthodox clans have written a letter to Reverend Guy Jang the current Abbot of Shaolin indicating a total loss of confidence in the leadership of Bak Fung Wan! They wish to remove him from the post of Chancellor of Wulin! This is what is being discussed at the summit! Rumours have it that the Chancellor of Wulin received a personal invitation to discuss this matter with Reverend Guy Jang around 6 months ago, but decided to decline the offer! So Shaolin had no other option than to call this urgent summit! Apparently Bak Fung Wan has already left Taishan and is making his way towards Shaolin to meet one on one with Reverend Guy Jang!”.

    “Ah! So father is still alive and well!”, thought Bak Tin Kiew with a sigh of relief upon hearing the news.

    “Removing the current Chancellor of Wulin from his current post? On what grounds?”, interrupted Yeung Yin Siu.

    Turning to face Yeung Yin Siu, Du Fu replied, “There are a number of reasons. The Head Master of the Huashan Sect has sighted the Chancellor’s inability many years ago to lead the orthodox clans to kill the Black Dragon Swordsman. His apparent return has shaken wulin with fear. Many innocent lives have died at the edge of his black dragon blade since his return. The Head Master of Huashan has had enough and seeks a resolution to this problem!”.

    Pausing for a while, Du Fu continued, “The Head Master of the Songshan Sect was angered upon receiving a letter warning him to stop the bloodshed between the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect. He was said to have written a letter to the Reverend Guy Jang accusing Bak Fung Wan of stealing the Frost Palms and Frost Sword kung fu manuals. He wishes Bak Fung Wan to return those kung fu manuals over to him! Also the Head Master of the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect have written a letter complaining against Bak Fung Wan’s conduct and handling of the situation! The Head Master of the Emei Sect and the Divine Butterfly Sect have also complained against Bak Fung Wan’s conduct!”.

    “Oh!”, gasped Bak Tin Kiew upon hearing this. She thought her father’s plan in dealing with the Songshan Sect and the Emei Sect had in fact been a good idea. Who would have thought that the various Head Master’s would then gang up on her father.

    Casting a curious glance at Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu continued, “Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan, Beggar Hung from the Dirty Faction had also written in a letter accusing Bak Fung Wan of recognising him as the rightful Chief of the Beggar Clan. The other Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan, Beggar Fong from the Clean Faction has complained about the same thing! Both Beggar Hung and Beggar Fong now seeks a resolution to this situation at the summit. Now Beggar Hung has been murdered and the jade bamboo stick has gone missing! It can only make matters worse for Bak Fung Wan come the summit at Shaolin!”.

    Giving a long sigh once again, Du Fu continued, “Finally there’s the matter of Fisherman Ho who Bak Fung Wan has failed to take any action against! Apparently in the last two months, Fisherman Ho has murdered the Head Master of the Lion Prestige Escort! The 3rd senior apprentice brother Wan Bong San is now their current Chief. The Head Master of the Emei Sect and the Head Master of the Kunlun Sect has also been murdered! And now Beggar Hung!”.

    Turning to look Du Fu in the eye, Yeung Yin Siu asked, “Do you believe that I’m capable of committing such cruel and ruthless crimes? Or do you think I’m innocent?”.

    Smiling Du Fu replied, “Of course I believe you’re innocent!”.

    “Oh! Why is that?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in a curious tone as a smile flashed across his face.

    “Because I passed by a handsome young man in black robes when I was heading this way! But I did not really pay that much attention to him! It is only now that I realise he must have been the same person as the one you’ve just described to me!”, replied Du Fu. Earlier he had been in such a rush to meet up with his sister that he did not really take much notice when he saw a man in black robes going in the opposite direction at a rapid rate. All he managed to do was take a quick glance at him.

    “But he was no longer carrying the jade bamboo stick! So he must either have lost it, hidden it, or given it to someone else”, remarked Du Fu.

    “Given it to someone else? Do you suspect that the handsome young man in black robes is working for someone?”, questioned Yeung Yin Siu, wanting to hear Du Fu’s guesses.

    A big grin emerged on Du Fu’s face as he continued, “You mentioned that the handsome young man in black robes used his chi energy to create a large hurricane! There are few people in wulin with this ability! They include, the 5 Storms of the Demon Cult, Yellow Air, the ‘Mo Yung’ family, Sword Saint Unrivalled East, Sabre Saint Immortal West, Gentleman Sword, Chopstick Lee, myself and elite fighters from the Songshan Sect!”.

    “However the only people capable of leaving the red palm marks on a human body are, members from the Demon Cult and the Mo Yung family!”, continued Du Fu with a beaming grin. He was confident that he had been able to narrow the field down.

    “That I already know!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smile.

    “Excellent! Excellent! But there’s something else you may not know! There are few experts in wulin that are a master of disguise and can impersonate anyone they wish! One of them is the ‘shape changer’ Yellow Air of the Demon Cult. The other that comes to mind is Mo Yung Bak the 22 year old son of the ‘Mo Yung’ family! Both of them are only subordinates within their respectful clans! So obviously they were working for someone!”, concluded Du Fu with a beaming grin.

    “Mo Yung Bak! I’m going to make him pay for this!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu inwardly as he clenched his fists tightly. He refused to believe that Tit Yum Ching would do something to harm his reputation. So he figured it must have been an orthodox clan member looking to impersonate him to cause some trouble to get rid of Bak Fung Wan as the Chancellor of Wulin.

    “Who do you suppose Mo Yung Bak is working for then? Obviously Yellow Air would be working for the Chancellor of the Demon Cult!”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew whilst casting a glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    Shifting his glance to Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu continued, “That I have no idea! The ‘Mo Yung’ family have always been secretive about their allegiance! They are obviously on the side that’s most profitable to them!”.

    Looking at the dead bodies on the ground, Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “I’ve checked all of the deceased bodies. Some of them died from the black widow poison, others seemed to have struck by the short dog beating sticks of the Beggar Clan, and the others died from the broad sword!”.

    “Very good!”, replied Du Fu looking at Yeung Yin Siu in some awe. In his mind Du Fu had always considered himself to be the most intelligent person in wulin. He was pleasantly surprised that there was someone who was equal in intelligence.

    “Indeed you’re correct! Beggar Clan members have participated in this bloody murder along with the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins, Lion Prestige Escort, and the Kunlun Sect!”, continued Du Fu was pointing at the various bodies on the ground.

    “How do you know for certain that the Lion Prestige Escort and the Kunlun Sect were also involved?”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew whilst standing to the side.

    “I’m not 100% certain. However, even though all of these clean wounds have been created by the broad sword. The thin long wounds are created by the broad swords commonly wielded by members of the Kunlun Sect and the thicker and shorter wounds are created by those normally wielded by the Lion Prestige Escort!”, replied Du Fu. He was a an expert at the weaponry of the orthodox clans. Yeung Yin Siu wasn’t and thus was not able to distinguish between the cuts made by the broad swords.

    “Hmm! Someone has impersonated me of murdering the Head Masters of the Emei Sect, Kunlun Sect, and the Lion Prestige Escort! And there are masked men in those same sect pursuing after the imposter! I wonder if the two events are connected!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu out loud.

    “That is certain! But I’m only guessing here!”, replied Du Fu.

    But before they could discuss the matter any further four people arrived from the dirt track carrying a carriage. The four young ladies were dressed in green robes. They each carried a short bamboo stick by the right side of the waist. There appeared to be a young lady sitting in the carriage.

    “Young miss, there are a number of dead bodies along the bridge! There are three people standing before us! There’s a young scholar in grey robes, an old bearded man, and a young lady in a green dress!”, shouted one the ladies in green as she stopped in her tracks.

    “Brother is that you? Who are these people? Why are they here? What happened?”, the voice of a young lady could suddenly be heard asking. The tone of her voice was cold and chilling.

    “Sister it’s me Du Fu! I apologise at not having visited you in over two years! But I’m here now!”, replied Du Fu as he raced up to the carriage.

    Pointing a finger at Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew, Du Fu said, “Those two people are my friends! As to what happened here, I’ll tell you about it later!”.

    “Brother, enough. I don’t want to see any uninvited guests! You can tell your friends to leave immediately! You’re welcome of course. I’ll see you tonight”, interrupted the young lady in the carriage.

    “What are you waiting for? Proceed forward!”, continued the young lady giving orders to her servants.

    Moments later the carriage crossed over the yellow bamboo bridge before disappearing into the green bamboo forest. Du Fu immediately raced up to Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu. He said in an apologetic tone, “Please forgive my sister! She has a very bad temper! She doesn’t trust anyone who she does not personally know! I was going to invite both of you in for tea! But I am not the master of the house here!”.

    Putting a hand up in the air to indicate that he was not offended, Yeung Yin Siu said, “That’s okay! We have other business at hand in any case! Perhaps we’ll catch up for a drink another time!”.

    “Definitely!”, replied Du Fu cupping his hands together.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew was just about to walk off when Du Fu raced up to the side of them. He said, “I’ll also be heading to Shaolin in a weeks time to attend the summit as a member of the Wudang Sect! I’ll inform everyone that the Fisherman Ho who has been creating trouble for the past two months is nothing but an imposter!”.

    “Thank you for your good intentions! But I doubt that they will trust your word alone!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu giving a loud sigh.

    “What are you going to do then?”, questioned Du Fu in a curious voice.

    “My name will never be cleared until I capture the real imposter and get him to confess in front of all of the heroes that attend the summit at Shaolin!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Do you have a plan in mind?”, asked Du Fu.

    “Yes! The Mo Yung family have always pride themselves on defeating an opponent using their own skills and abilities against them! I’ll do the same! I’m not concerned about Yellow Air! I’ll find out sooner or later whether he has any part to play in this!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu in a very confident tone.

    “Goodbye! And wish you the best of luck! I’ll see you at Shaolin then!”, replied Du Fu before turning around. Moments later he disappeared into the green bamboo forest.

    “Goodbye!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew simultaneously before turning to leave. They were no longer worried about the deceased Beggar Clan members on the ground, as Du Fu had already made the necessary arrangements.

    Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu slowly made their way back to the city of Hennan hand in hand to admire the scenery and the country side. A street noodle vendor was set up underneath a tall old willow tree in a clearing near a small lake. It was no lunchtime and they were very hungry. Pulling over a seat, Yeung Yin Siu ordered two bowls of steamed black duck noodles. He took out a small blue bag before handing over a couple of coins to the street vendor. The street vendor returned moments later with two bowls in his hands.

    Picking up a pair of chopsticks, Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “Do you realise that this is the first time in 2 months that we have been able to eat something other than those dam stinky white fish!”.

    Smiling, Bak Tin Kiew replied, “You’re right! I never thought steamed black duck noodle would taste this good as she continued eating!”.

    Moments later they heard the frantic cries of “Help me! Please help me!”, in the distance as a pretty young girl ran towards the noodle street vending store. One could now see that she was being hotly pursued by a man wearing a bright golden robe with a green dragon embroided on the front riding on a white horse. Around 40 armoured men followed closely behind the rider as guards. Each of the men held a long spear in hand. It was obvious that the rider man was a relative of the current Emperor of China by the way he dressed.

    Not long after the pretty young girl reached the street vending store before calling out frantically, “Help! Please help me!”. But no one dared help her upon recognising the rider.

    Placing a hand on Bak Tin Kiew’s shoulders, Yeung Yin Siu said, “Don’t go anywhere! I’ll be right back!”, before suddenly disappearing out of sight.

    By now the rider and his 40 guards had reached and surrounded the street noodle vending store. The customers tried their best to dash away, but the guards prevented them from doing so. Stepping forward the rider shouted whilst fixing a gaze at the young girl, “Ha! Ha! Ha! Do you really think that you alone can defy my orders? I’m related to the Emperor! I may therefore do as I wish! You’re all my loyal subjects!”.

    Waving a hand to his guards he continued, “Surround her! Since she kicked me earlier today! I’m going to rape her now in front of all these people! Hold her!”.

    Seeing that many of the people had tried to rush off, the rider said in a loud voice, “Sit back down! Anyone who tries to leave will die! You’re all going to witness what happens to a young lady who doesn’t listen to my orders!”.

    “Sir, please don’t! Please don’t! What have I done wrong?”, asked the pretty lady in a frantic voice. Four guards had now surrounded her and were bending her over an empty table.

    “Ha! Ha! Ha! What have you done wrong? Who asked you to be so pretty! It’s your own dam fault! I must therefore have you!”, replied the rider with a smirk as he began undressing himself. He had come across a pretty girl along his journey and immediately wanted her. Who was going to stop him? He felt powerful and in total control. It was like he was invincible. He had the royal title, endless riches, and many body guards by his side. He could do as he wished and get away with it.

    Bak Tin Kiew decided to turn her head away at this point not wanting to see the rider undress himself. She had wanted to draw her sword, but her pressure points had somehow been sealed. She suddenly realised that Yeung Yin Siu had anticipated that she would want to act to save the pretty girl and thus had sealed her pressure points when he placed a hand over her shoulders. Bak Tin Kiew cursed inwardly, “What is big brother Yeung doing? Is he just going to let this innocent young girl get raped?”.

    Just at this moment a man wearing a torn black robe and a plain black mask stepped forward from behind the bushes. Bak Tin Kiew panic slightly upon seeing the masked man. He was dressed exactly like the masked man who had ambushed them earlier.

    “Ha! Ha! Ha! Who’s this insignificant little pest before my eyes!”, mocked the masked man walking towards the golden rider. Upon hearing the voice, Bak Tin Kiew became a little relieved. It was none other than Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Insignificant! Do you know who this is?”, shouted one of the guards pinning the girl down by the arms.

    “He’s probably only a country bumpkin who doesn’t know who he’s messing with!”, mocked the guard holding the girl down by the right arm.

    “Messing with the Emperor’s brother! He must looking for an early death!”, mocked the man pinning the girl down by her waist.

    “Humph! So what if you’re the Emperor’s brother! You eat, breathe fresh air, and drink water in order to survive! You bleed just like any other man! When you die, your flesh will just be meat for the maggots like the rest of us! The only thing that makes you different is that people recognise and bestow a title upon you! That title of yours only means something if others decide to recognise it! When no one recognises that title, it becomes worthless! Now let that young girl go!”, demanded Yeung Yin Siu whilst pointing this long stick forward.

    “Let go? You must be joking right! Who are you and how dare you interfere in my business, which in turn is the Emperor of China’s business?”, replied the golden rider in an arrogant tone. He ignored the masked man’s comments and was now proceeding towards the pretty young girl who hand been bent and now undressed over the table.

    “Oh! Such big titles! I’m really scared! At the end of the day when one decides to kill another without fear of death or fear for one’s own life! The value of grand royal titles and all of the riches in the world are worthless! As you’d die in any case! It’s the life of one against the other in its simplest form! The one who does not fear death and would die a for a good cause will therefore have the advantage! The only thing that can save you is if you’re an immortal! Then no one is capable of killing you!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    Hearing no response from the golden rider, the Yeung Yin Siu stepped forward, “Now hear this! I want you to remember it for the rest of your life! I am Mo Yung Bak of Nanjing in the Nan Zhili province! Prepare to die!”.

    “Why did big brother Yeung say that he was Mo Yung Bak? Why isn’t he taking credit for this heroic deed?”, thought Bak Tin Kiew inwardly.

    As he said the word ‘die’, he leapt up in the air and spun at 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane. It knocked the 40 guards and the golden rider off his feet. Utilising his lightness he zipped through the crowd of fallen guards and the golden rider before smashing hard with his stick against their chest. He only utilised 10% of his inner energy in the attacks. But all of the 40 guards and the golden rider coughed up a mouthful of blood and had been injured seriously. Even Yeung Yin Siu had become a little surprise at the level of his inner energy.

    Standing over the golden rider, Yeung Yin Siu, stampeded his face with his boot before starting to drive his head into the ground. He said, “Ha! Ha! Ha! Brother of the Emperor! Even with 40 guards! Doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to do any good to protect you! Here’s your lunch! Does the earth taste any good? Or should I find some dog turd for you to feed on?”.

    Still managing to curse, the golden rider said, “How dare you offend me! You’ll pay for this! I swear you’ll die a terrible death!”.

    “Humph! Your life is now at my mercy! Yet you still believe you’re in control! We’ll have to see about that!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with an evil grin. His eyes sharpened as he suddenly felt powerful and in control. He was a little shocked by it. But yet he somehow liked it. How was he to know that his father’s crazy blood flowed through his veins and had been pumped through his heart.

    Seeing that the guards had now been knocked out. Many of the customers attempted to run away. Zipping his stick into the air to block the path of those escaping before catching it again in his grasp, Yeung Yin Siu said in a mocking tone, “Eh! I’d like everyone to stay! I’m having a friendly chat with the Emperor’s brother! I’d like everyone to hear it!”.

    None of the customers dared to leave upon seeing the awesome display of kung fu. They remained seated. Leaning down, Yeung Yin Siu decided to punch the golden rider in the right and left eye, leaving behind two black bruises. He then decided to pluck the hair from the head of the golden rider one by one. The golden rider cursed and screamed in pain each time. It took around 20 minutes when Yeung Yin Siu had plucked all of the black hair from atop the golden rider’s head. He was now totally bald and was bleeding in several places.

    Grabbing the golden rider by the throat before slapping him hard across the face and spitting at him, Yeung Yin Siu said, “I bet you thought it was really fun when you wanted to rape that young pretty girl! Well you can bury that thought in your mind forever as you’ll never have that opportunity again! Today I am going to teach you a lesson you’ll never forget! Don’t mess me eccentric personalities of this world when they’re in a bad mood regardless of who you are!”.

    Taking a knife he suddenly sliced down towards the golden rider’s groin. He screamed a terrifying scream that echoed through the valley. It lasted for a long while. Moments later the gold rider passed out from the pain.

    Bak Tin Kiew was in total disbelief at this moment in time. The Yeung Yin Siu she had known thus far had been nothing but a true gentleman despite all of his cheek. She was slightly afraid upon seeing his darker side suddenly emerge before her eyes. He had appeared to have gone made with rage and loss all of his sense. But she should have known that there is a dark side in all humans that walk upon the earth. Those who do not believe so, are living in denial. It is the ability to suppress the dark forces that makes one good. Most people are able to do this subconsciously and thus do not recognise it.

    Her pressure points suddenly released as she rushed to grab Yeung Yin Siu by the hands, Bak Tin Kiew gasped, “Enough! You’ve made him suffer enough already! I’m afraid!”.

    “Afraid? You’re afraid? What can you possibly be afraid of? I Mo Yung Bak fear nothing!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu in a booming voice so that everyone could hear. He gave a glare back at Bak Tin Kiew. His eyes were full of rage. Bak Tin Kiew shivered upon seeing the anger built up in his eyes. She rushed back to her seat and remained quite. She no longer dared to upset Yeung Yin Siu any further at this moment in time.

    Turning his attention back to the golden rider, Yeung Yin Siu kicked him a few times in the ribs to wake him up before shouting, “Hear this now brother of the Emperor! You can lead your entire garrison to Nanjing for revenge if you wish! I Mo Yung Bak do not fear you!”.

    With this he grabbed onto Bak Tin Kiew’s hands before utilising his lightness kung fu to flee from the scene. They could hear the pretty young girl shouting behind them, “Big hero! Thank you!”.

    Suddenly stopping underneath a big willow tree, Yeung Yin Siu said, “Kiew yee, I don’t know what happened back there! It got out of hand! I’m sorry if I scared you!”.

    One could see that his body and his hands were shaking wildly. His heart was pounding fast as hot blood rushed through his veins. He did not know why he had acted so ruthlessly and behaved so wildly. It was as if the mad beast caged up inside his heart for centuries had been unleashed. Cold sweat dripped down his back as he remembered the line from the poem about the 5 Greats that said, “The ‘Northern Dragon’, now hidden, will soon appear. The other four greats will have reasons to fear”.

    “Shh! Shh! Don’t worry!”, replied Bak Tin Kiew in a gentle voice as she hugged tightly onto Yeung Yin Siu. They rested that way for around another 30 minutes before getting on their way again.

    On the way back to the city of Hennan, Yeung Yin Siu could not resist the temptation to undertake a number of other mischievous acts under the false name of Mo Yung Bak. But he was less ruthless this time. He had injured various members of the Black Cliff Mountain Robbers before stealing all of their gold and jewels. He picked fights with members from the Hengshan Sect, Zhongnan Sect, 5 Poisons Sect, and various Demon Cult members. He virtually picked fights with anyone who knew kung fu who crossed his path along his journey back to the city of Hennan. Demanding that if they wanted to look for him for revenge they could go to Nanjing and seek him out. Yeung Yin Siu figured that if someone was going to use his name and create a series of mischief throughout wulin, he may as well do the same. He wanted to drive the imposter out of hiding. He was certain that the imposter had not yet left the city of Hennan. Once he captured the imposter he had a number of tortures in mind to force him into confessing in front of all the heroes at Shaolin. He figured that his guess of Mo Yung Bak was correct, given that the wise and knowledgable Du Fu had also come up with the same answer.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew managed to arrive back at the city of Hennan around 6.00pm in the evening. It was now getting very dark and they decided to rest at the Golden Dragon Inn. Walking up to the manager, Yeung Yin Siu decided to ask, “Manager, around two months ago a young lady who booked a room here had a stable boy take care of a wolf named Black Snow! Did she ever return to collect it?”.

    The manager searched deep into his memory before replying, “Someone did come and collect the wolf I recall! Whether it was your friend! I’m not certain!”.

    “Ah! So Siu Wai is safe!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu as a smiled appeared on his face.

    “Did you see a young looking lady wearing a white dress pass through here around two months ago? Her hair had turned all white! So she won’t be hard to recognise!”, interrupted Bak Tin Kiew to the side. She was greatly worried about her master.

    “She would have been with a pretty lady wearing a red dress, purple dress, and black dress. There would also be a number of men with them dressed in black robes with red trimmings! Each of the men would be wearing a red cape on their backs!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu upon noticing that the manager had been searching deep in his mind.

    “You mean the warriors from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins and the females from the 7 Vixens?”, replied the manager.

    “Yes!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew together.

    “I did see some of them pass through here! But not all at the same time! I remember many of them were asking whether I had seen the other people that were with them as well! You two are the last ones to ask me that exact same question!”, remarked the manager.

    “It’s okay! Could we have a room for two please!”, asked Yeung Yin Siu all of a sudden upon thinking that Siu Wai, Fung Lau Yin, Fung Mun Kit, Kiu Pin Fok and the others had returned safely. He was going to deliver a message by pigeon courier to the ‘White Horses Inn’ in Chongqing in the morning to let Fung Lau Yin and Kiu Pin Fok know that he was safe, and what his intentions were from now. He was going to help Bak Tin Kiew avenge the death of her mother before going to look for the Divine 9 Dragon inner energy and the Black Dragon sword arts.

    “Why certainly! Under which name?”, replied the hotel manager casting a suspicious look at Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu. They did not look like husband and wife.

    “I am Mo Yung Bak, and this is my sister Mo Yung Kiew!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk. He had guessed what was on the manager’s mind.

    “Okay! Last room on the East Wing!”, replied the hotel manager pointing towards the sign that said “East Wing” in the distance towards the left.

    Blushing slightly as they walked up the stairs, Bak Tin Kiew decided to ask, “Big brother Yeung, why did you only book one room for the two of us?”.

    Smiling for the first time since the encounter with the golden robed man, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “It’s the cheapest and safest way to be staying at the Golden Dragon Inn over night! Who knows what may happen at this Inn on any given night!”.

    After settling into their room, Bak Tin Kiew and Yeung Yin Siu went out to the restaurant for dinner. Yeung Yin Siu ordered plates of fried rice, roast beef and pork, along with a few dim sims. He had enough of eating seafood for the past two months. It was still early in the evening so the restaurant was not yet full. Glancing left and right, Yeung Yin Siu noticed something odd. To the left of them sat two odd looking men. One of the men was a bold man in his late 30s. He wore the standard white robe with red trimmings with a red half-crescent moon embroided on the top right hand corner. A large pair of metallic scissors rested to the right hand side of this man. The other man that sat at the table was a giant of a man. In his late 40s. He looked very much like a human meatball. He had a rounded face and his limbs were rather short. His skin appeared to be very oily. His white robes had been stained in red blood. A large machete rested on his right hand side.

    “Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon! What are they doing here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly upon seeing the two men. Both of these men were the Regional Commanders of the Demon Cult from the South. So it was strange indeed that they had remained in the North of China for so long after the annual general meeting. He continued eating with his head down. None of the men recognised him because of the beard he had grown.

    Moments later a third man entered the restaurant. Pulling over a chair he joined, Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon. Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this person. It was none other than Cannibal Chung.

    “The Chancellor sent me to see if you two had managed to scout any further news as to the location of Fisherman Ho! Do you have any news to report?”, asked Cannibal Chung in a curious voice as he leant forward.

    Glancing around the room to check if anyone was listening, Crazy Barber Wu replied, “Fisherman Ho! Fisherman Ho! Why on earth is the Chancellor so concerned about stinky Fisherman Ho?”.

    “Eh! Brother Wu, that’s none of your business! Don’t be so nosy! Tell me what you two uncovered!”, repeated Cannibal Chung looking rather annoyed.

    “Rumours have it that Fisherman Ho just recently just murdered Beggar Hung, the Deputy Chief of the Beggar Clan and Leader of the Dirty Beggar Faction!”, replied Butcher Poon.

    “Apparently he has also taken the jade bamboo stick and has disappeared!”, continued Crazy Barber Wu.

    “But I suspect that he’s still in Hennan!”, interrupted Butcher Poon.

    “Good work! I’ll tell her personally when she arrives!”, replied Cannibal Chung.

    “She’s coming here tonight?”, asked Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon together in shock. Tit Yum Ching had not left the Demon Valley since becoming the Chancellor of the Demon Cult. So this was indeed a great surprise to them that she would leave, what to them appeared to be so minor.

    “Eh! That’s none of your business! Your mission here is now finished. The Chancellor has a new assignment for the two of you when you return to the South of China!”, continued Cannibal Chung in an authoritative tone.

    “I’ll confront Tit Yum Ching tonight!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly.

    “What are the Chancellor’s orders then? We’ll do our best to accomplish it!”, asked the Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon in a curious voice.

    “I’m not allow to say! It’s written in this envelope! It’s a secret mission that only myself, the 7 Fingered Demon Flute, 3 Fingered Demon Zither, and the Chancellor knows about! Remember the walls have ears!”, remarked Cannibal Chung as he passed the envelope over to Crazy Barber Wu, before taking a glance around the room.

    Opening the letter and reading its contents before passing it over to Butcher Poon, Crazy Barber Wu remarked, “Excellent! The Chancellor is really clever! I’ll make sure it’s done!”.

    “Excellent! Please reassure the Chancellor that she has chosen the right people for this mission! Even if I die, I’ll make sure this mission gets accomplished!”, agreed Butcher Poon before placing the letter in his mouth and eating its contents.

    “Eh! Brother Poon! Was the letter a good entree?”, asked Cannibal Chung with a smile upon seeing that Butcher Poon had eaten the later.

    Smiling slightly, Butcher Poon replied, “Talking about food! I have something special for you before I go!”.

    Taking a large basket in his hands before opening it to take a look, Cannibal Chung remarked, “Excellent! The finest cut of raw human meat! I’ll make good use of it! Goodbye!”.

    “Goodbye!”, cupping their hands together said, Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon before getting up to leave. Moments later they utilise their lightness kung fu before disappearing from sight.

    Cannibal Chung sat at his table to wait for Tit Yum Ching’s arrival. He couldn’t help but open the basket that Butcher Poon had given him. He took out what looked like the arm of a human before starting to take large bites out of bit. Bak Tin Kiew nearly threw up and passed out upon seeing the inhumane act before her eyes. She did not think it would be possible that someone would be capable of eating another human’s flesh. But how was she to know that there are many countless evils in the world that remain hidden and are very rarely seen.

    “Brother Chung! Put that away! The Chancellor is coming!”, said a man wearing a blue bandanna on his head and the standard white robes with red trimmings of the Demon Cult. This man was none other than Blue Water. Walking alongside him was a man wearing a red bandanna on his head. This was none other than Red Flame. Yeung Yin Siu had meant both of these men before at the Demon Cult so recognised them immediately. They both pulled over a chair to join Cannibal Chung at the table.

    “Welcome! Welcome!”, said Cannibal Chung as he placed the human arm back into the basket. Red Flame and Blue Water both shot an unapproving look at him.

    Not long after Tit Yum Ching entered the restaurant before taking a glance around the room. She was now wearing a red dress with white trimmings. A white veil covered the lower portion of her face. The old bearded man and the young girl in green wearing a white mask immediately caught her attention. She had seen a girl dressed exactly like the girl in green at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult, but could not for the time being guess who she was. She shot a suspicious glance towards the table.

    “Chancellor! What is it?”, remarked the 3 Fingered Demon Zither standing to her right side.

    “Do you suspect someone has infiltrated this hotel and will listen into our conversation?”, asked the 7 Fingered Demon Flute.

    “I’m not sure! But whilst we’re talking I don’t want anyone in this restaurant!”, replied Tit Yum Ching.

    Pausing for a while to observe the girl in green, Tit Yum Ching ordered, “Tell the manager to close the restaurant now! I want to hold the meeting here in secret!”.

    The 3 Fingered Demon Zither and the 7 Fingered Demon Flute did as they were told. The approached the manager who subsequently told all of the guests that the restaurant was now closed, and to return to their own rooms. A number of customers complained about the restaurant being closed so early, so the manager agreed to serve customers food in their own room.

    Yeung Yin Siu and Bak Tin Kiew could do nothing but return to their rooms. Bak Tin Kiew remained in the room to rest and recover from the two palms striked she had received earlier in the day after finishing dinner. Yeung Yin Siu walked around the garden outside of the restaurant to wait for the meeting to finish. He had wanted to catch Tit Yum Ching before she returns to her room or leave. But he waited for what seemed like three long hours.

    “What on earth could they be discussing?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly as he wandered around the garden to pass the time.

    A number of thoughts entered his mind at this moment in time. He had a sudden though, “Tit Yum Ching had initially wanted to talk me out of quitting the Demon Cult! Now there’s an imposter who’s out to ruin my reputation! I wonder if…”.

    Just at this moment Tit Yum Ching approached the garden. As always the 3 Fingered Demon Zither and the 7 Fingered Demon Flute were by her side. They were very loyal to her and the ‘Tit’ family. Yeung Yin Siu immediately rushed to hide behind one of the large trees. He did not want to be seen at this moment in time, hoping to be able to listen into the conversations. But to his surprise, they weren’t discussing anything. Tit Yum Ching just strolled back and forth along the garden without saying a word. Her arms were folded as she was pacing up and down. Her once peaceful, indifferent, and emotionless face looked very weary and tired.

    “I’d like to spend some time alone! Please leave!”, demanded Tit Yum Ching after a while as she sat down at the small pavilion in the garden.

    “As you wish!”, replied 3 Fingered Demon Zither and the 7 Fingered Demon Flute whilst cupping their hands and bowing slightly. Moments later they disappeared from the garden. But as loyal subjects, they were never going to stray far away.

    Tit Yum Ching gave a sigh as she stared at the full moon shinning brightly high in the evening sky. She had been greatly troubled and stressed for the past two months upon assuming the position of Chancellor of the Demon Cult. She had sorted out a great amount of internal trouble over that time and had executed a number of clan members who broke clan rules. So of them she had known since childhood. But she was powerless to do anything about it. As rules were rules. She was thus very troubled at this moment in time. There was a touch of worry in her once gentle and soothing eyes. Looking around Tit Yum Ching noticed a large jug of wine resting on the table and a number of small cups resting to the side. She smiled a little before pouring wine into an empty cup. She drank the wine in one go before filling another cup with wine. She did this another six times before giving a long sigh.

    Deciding to finally step behind the big tree to reveal himself, Yeung Yin Siu remarked whilst stroking his beard, “Young lady! What troubles you so greatly that you would sit here all alone to drink? Aren’t you bored? Let me join you?”.

    Tit Yum Ching was startled, at not having expected that anyone would be in the garden at this point in time. She shouted, “Who the heck are you? What do you want?”.

    “Who am I? I’m a friend and just wanted to join you for a drink!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst stroking his beard. He did not want to reveal his true identity to her until he cleared his name.

    “Friend? You’re very much mistaken! I have few friends! And all of my friends have either died, or left!”, continued Tit Yum Ching whilst pouring another cup of wine before downing it.

    “Oh! What about Fisherman Ho then? Aren’t you two still friends?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk.

    “Who the heck are you? How do you know Fisherman Ho is my friend?”, replied Tit Yum Ching in shock as she stood up from the table.

    Laughing a little Yeung Yin Siu, walked to the side of the table before pouring himself a cup of wine. He said, “I heard Cannibal Chung say to Crazy Barber Wu and Butcher Poon that you had been so concerned about Fisherman Ho that you have left the Demon Valley to find him! Is that not true?”.

    Pausing for a while he continued, “Also Fisherman Ho is my friend and he has asked that I deliver two gifts to you!”.

    Grabbing Yeung Yin Siu by the arm, Tit Yum Ching remarked, “You mean Fisherman Ho is still alive? Where is he? Please tell me!”.

    “Humph! What makes you think Fisherman Ho has died? Perhaps someone wants to find him to make sure he dies! He won’t be tricked so easily!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk.

    Looking rather annoyed, Tit Yum Ching replied, “What are you implying?”.

    “Surely you’re not going to tell me that you haven’t heard the rumours that Fisherman Ho has just killed Beggar Hung! And a few months ago he killed the Headmaster of the Lion Prestige Escort, Kunlun Sect, and the Emei Sect! So you knew he was alive! Why did you think he was dead?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu once more.

    “Yes! I’ve heard those rumours! But I don’t believe it’s him!”, replied Tit Yum Ching whilst shaking her head.

    “What makes you so certain?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu once more.

    “I… I… I don’t know! I… I… I just know!”, mumbled Tit Yum Ching whilst pouring a cup of wine and downing it again.

    Stroking his beard Yeung Yin Siu remarked, “I don’t believe that its Fisherman Ho who did those cruel acts either! Why I saw him only a couple of days ago and he told me that it was an imposter who has been running around through wulin causing all of the trouble for him!”.

    “Imposter?”, replied Tit Yum Ching in shock.

    Tit Yum Ching suddenly had a thought. She said, “Do you think someone thought that Fisherman Ho has died and thus impersonated him to create trouble through wulin?”.

    “Ha! Ha! Young lady! You’re the one who thinks Fisherman Ho is dead! Is it not possible for you to do what you’ve just said? After all it would greatly benefit the Demon Cult when the orthodox clans are leaderless and in total disarray! It makes them easier for them to be conquered!”, snickered Yeung Yin Siu as he slammed a fist on the table.

    “Also wouldn’t it benefit you personally? That Fisherman Ho’s reputation is ruined throughout wulin? That way he’ll have to stay a Demon Cult member and spend the rest of his life hiding at the Demon Valley! You would therefore be able retain a bodyguard with great abilities! Is that not what you want?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst looking directly at Tit Yum Ching. He knew that the Chancellor of the Demon Cult was indeed a very clever person and was not as weak as she looks.

    “What are you talking about? Who told you that rubbish? I need his ability to be able to get along with the various unorthodox and orthodox clans to help me! So why would I want to ruin Fisherman Ho’s reputation? Besides we are good friends! I could never do that!”, protested Tit Yum Ching whilst shooting a glare at the old bearded man. One could tell that she was speaking the truth.

    Looking the old bearded man in the eye, Tit Yum Ching continued in a sincere voice, “Also you’re very much mistaken about my clan. Long ago we fought alongside the Chancellor of Wulin and thus have no ambitions of destroying all of the orthodox clans!”.

    Smiling delightfully inside, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Young lady, that is not to say that your enemies would not want to harm Fisherman Ho’s reputation knowing how much his friendship means to you! What’s more! They may have uncovered that he has agreed to assist you in monitoring some members from the Demon Cult!”.

    “In fact Fisherman Ho told me that there are only two people who are masters in disguise capable of impersonating him! One of them is your loyal subject Yellow Air and the other is Mo Yung Bak!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst casting a glance back at Tit Yum Ching.

    “Yellow Air? No you’re very much mistaken! I’ve sent him on a mission down South! You can tell Fisherman Ho the next time you see him! I can assure you he was not involved!”, replied Tit Yum Ching whilst looking up and down at the old bearded man. The way he was talking and the tone of the old bearded man’s voice sounded very familiar to her.

    “Okay I trust you! However, are you able to tell me when you saw Yellow Air last? How long ago was it?”, questioned Yeung Yin Siu. He was not totally convinced by Tit Yum Ching’s reply. On his mind this was a very critical question.

    “Now that you’ve mentioned it! I haven’t seen Yellow Air since the annual general meeting!”, remarked Tit Yum Ching in shock.

    Yeung Yin Siu was surprised by Tit Yum Ching’s response. He gasped in horror as a thought suddenly flashed pass his mind, “Dam! Have I wrongly accused Mo Yung Bak?”.

    Stroking his beard and looking a little concerned, he continued, “Young lady, then you can’t be sure as to what Yellow Air is doing at the moment! It could also be said that he may have betrayed you!”.

    Pausing for a moment, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Also Fisherman Ho tells me that Yellow Air is the only one who has seen what he actually looks like out of the two great imposters!”.

    Realising that the old bearded man knew too about the Demon Cult, Tit Yum Ching demanded, “Wait! Who are you?”.

    Breaking the long short stick in his hands to reveal the Iron Blood Sword, before taking out a black silk cloth and placing it on the table for Tit Yum Ching, Yeung Yin Siu said, “I’ve already told you! I am a friend of Fisherman Ho!

    “He told me to deliver these two gifts to you! He said that this sword and the martial arts contained in the silk cloth belongs to your family! He also said that you should learn these arts as they would be of great benefit to you in the future!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu as he presented the Iron Blood sword over to Tit Yum Ching.

    “The Iron Blood sword, and the Iron Blood martial arts? Where did he find these? Did he say?”, remarked Tit Yum Ching in shock upon taking the sword in her hands and reading the silk cloth.

    “Yes! Fisherman Ho found these on his journey and told me to return them to you! Where he found them? That I’m not certain!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. He did not want to reveal where he had found the Iron Blood sword and the Iron Blood martial arts. He also did not want anyone else to disturb the resting place of Yeung Kai Seng and Tit Miu Lan.

    Turning to leave he said, “If you’re really concerned about Fisherman Ho then I suggest that you locate Yellow Air! Find out the truth about what he has been doing the past two months! That may help Fisherman Ho to clear his name! I’ll be confronting Mo Yung Bak!”.

    Tit Yum Ching did not respond. She remained silent as many thoughts now ran through her mind. She thought to herself, “Where on earth did Fisherman Ho find the Iron Blood sword! Who’s this old bearded man? How come I’ve never heard of him?”.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to leave when he realised he had another question on his mind. He asked, “Also Fisherman Ho wanted to know who it was that removed the deceased body of the Black Widow Assassin from the duelling arena on the day of the annual general meeting?”.

    Searching deep in her mind, Tit Yum Ching replied, “Sorry! But I don’t remember! The only person that would know is the Rule Elder Kwan! He presided over the series of duels!”.

    “I must speak with Rule Elder Kwan!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu to himself. But he had more important matters on his mind at this point in time.

    “Young lady, goodbye and take care! I’ll let Fisherman know that you’re truly concerned about his safety!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he cupped his hands and utilised his lightness kung fu to disappear from sight.

    “Where have I seen this kind of lightness kung fu before!”, thought Tit Yum Ching inwardly as she watched the old bearded man disappear from sight.

    “Wait! You haven’t told me where Fisherman Ho is at the moment!”, shouted Tit Yum Ching. But the old bearded man did not seem to hear her pleas.

    Upon returning to his room, Yeung Yin Siu was greatly shocked and alarmed. The small candle lighting up the room had been put out. It was dead silent inside. He thought, “Where’s Bak Tin Kiew? Surely she hasn’t gone to bed yet! I should at least be able to hear something! Dam…”.

    Wasting no time, Yeung Yin Siu kicked open the door before appearing to rush into the room. He utilised his lightness kung fu before appearing to twist to his right. It appeared as if he suddenly split into three people before entering the room down the centre, left, and right. Suddenly a pair of luminous green eyes emerged from the darkness before launching several strikes at the image of the old bearded man on the right and at the centre. But his attacks hit nothing but thin air.

    “Ah! Ya!”, cried the mysterious man was struck on the left shoulder. Indicating that the man had actually entered the room from the left. Wasting no time he immediately turned around before leaping out of the window to escape.

    Yeung Yin Siu, decided not to pursue after the mysterious man. He was afraid that it would be just another ‘tiger mountain’ trick to lure him away from Bak Tin Kiew. He thought to himself upon remembering the pair of luminous green eyes in the dark, “Could that have been Night Owl? What’s he doing in my room?”.

    Another thought had crossed his mind, “But why would Night Owl want to attack me? He’s one of Tit Yum Ching’s loyal subjects!”.

    A little confused, Yeung Yin Siu walked over to the table before lighting the small candle. It lit up the entire room with a yellowish glow. What he saw amazed him. Someone had entered the room and tipped it upside down. It appeared as if they were frantically searching for something. Bak Tin Kiew was no where to be seen. Her travelling bag and sword had also gone. Cold sweat dripped down Yeung Yin Siu’s back as he thought, “Tin Kiew! Where are you? Where are you?”.

    Opening the window to look outside, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed for the first time that one could see and observe the various events taking place in the garden directly below. He had just been there moments ago and could now see the small pavilion where Tit Yum Ching had sat. A thought crossed his mind, “Could Bak Tin Kiew have opened the window and saw us talking together?”.

    Another thought suddenly entered his mind, “But surely Tin Kiew can’t have taken off just because she saw me talking with another young lady? Could she?”.

    Looking around the room once more, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that a small a dagger had been thursted into the top right hand corner of the bed. There was a letter at the handle of the dagger. Opening the letter, Yeung Yin Siu, read out loud, "Dear Mo Yung Bak, We have some unfinished business! It’s time that we resolve it! Meet me at the Dragon Tavern at lunchtime in Kaifeng in 3 days time if you want to see your little friend alive - Fa Fei Sit!”.

    “Fa Fei Sit?”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu as more questions then answers entered his mind. He heard Kiu Pin Fok had mentioned this name to him before. But he had no idea who this swordsman was or what he wanted.

    “What unfinished business does he have with Mo Yung Bak that he has decided to capture Bak Tin Kiew to force me to confront him? What on earth was he looking for in my room?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to leave the hotel room and make his way towards Kaifeng, when a masked man suddenly ran pass the corridor before launching a projectile in the air. Yeung Yin Siu twisted his body to the left before managing to catch the projectile in his grasp. Opening his right hand, he could see that it was only an insignia which had been launched in the air.

    “The Mo Yung family!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu upon reading the golden words carved into the black insignia.

    Turning the insignia over he read out aloud, “Meet me at the Crocodile Bridge – The real Mo Yung Bak!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu immediately utilised his lightness kung fu to pursue after the masked man who had thrown the insignia into his hands. He thought as he ran, “So my tactics have worked! I’ve driven him out of hiding!”.

    End of Chapter 13.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

  16. #56
    Junior Member Quantum's Avatar
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    yeah ! another update. Thanx long
    To live life like a dream is rare. To let it happen in reality is even more rare.

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    I like how u added Mo Yung family, kinda like MRF in Demi Gods and Semi Devils (DGSD), too bad he was such a poser as that character.
    As for the female characters, I feel Tit Yum Ching is a more intriquing character than Bak Tin Kiew.
    Also, Long, I notice sometimes u have thoughts of other characters, like what they are thinking. Is it what they are truly thinking or is it what Yeung Yin Siu (main character) percieves what they are thinking?

  18. #58
    Senior Member Long's Avatar
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    Default thoughts of other characters

    The thoughts are what the other characters are actually thinking at the time. I sort of thought it would be good to have some dialogue between two characters and to also find out what each person reacts. Hasn't worked as I would like so far so may change some of it in the revision.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

  19. #59
    Senior Member douggilmour's Avatar
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    I wasn't talking in general, I was talking about this exchange:

    “Also wouldn’t it benefit you personally? That Fisherman Ho’s reputation is ruined throughout wulin? That way he’ll have to stay a Demon Cult member and spend the rest of his life hiding at the Demon Valley! You would therefore be able retain a bodyguard with great abilities! Is that not what you want?”, continued Yeung Yin Siu whilst looking directly at Tit Yum Ching. He knew that the Chancellor of the Demon Cult was indeed a very clever person and was not as weak as she looks.

    “What are you talking about? Who told you that rubbish? I need his ability to be able to get along with the various unorthodox and orthodox clans to help me! So why would I want to ruin Fisherman Ho’s reputation? Besides we are good friends! I could never do that!”, protested Tit Yum Ching whilst shooting a glare at the old bearded man. One could tell that she was speaking the truth.
    That last line there, who's one? is it Yeung interpreting her answr or u, as the narrator, telling the reader how she was delivering her answer?

  20. #60
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    Default Chapter 14: Friends and Foes

    Chapter 14: Friends and Foes

    Soft rain is now falling in the evening. The dirt path is slightly muddy and the wind is blowing wildly. It is pretty cool at the moment. One could see that the leaves on the willow trees have begun turning yellow. A thick mist covers the evening sky. Making it almost impossible to see. An indication that summer is beginning to give way to autumn. The sounds of splashing footsteps could be heard in the darkness approaching a long wooden bridge at a rapid rate. One could see that it was an old bearded man wearing a torn black robe. He arrives at the bridge moments later.

    “The Crocodile Bridge! I’ve come to the right place!”, thought the old bearded man inwardly upon arriving at the bridge.

    Shifting his gaze towards the other end of the bridge the old bearded could see a tall black shadow. He appeared to stand around 6’0 tall and was a very well built man in his early 50s. His thick white hair was untied and blowing wildly in the wind. A golden belt with a black scorpion at its centre was worn around his waist. A red cape was flustering in the breeze. He was carrying a large black spear in his right hand. It appeared as if this man had been waiting at the bridge all night for someone. The old bearded man immediately recognised this person. It was none other than the Black Scorpion Assassin from the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassin.

    “So you’ve finally arrived!”, shouted the Black Scorpion Assassin upon noticing that someone had approached the bridge.

    Starring up and down at the old bearded man, the Black Scorpion Assassin continued, “Well were is your weapon? Draw it now! I won’t kill a defenceless man!”, upon noticing that the old bearded man came empty handed.

    “This must be a mistake! I’m not the person you’re looking for! I have an appointment with someone else here at this bridge tonight!”, replied the old bearded man in shock.

    Turning around to peer into the darkness behind him, the old bearded man continued, “I’ll stand here to the side to wait for him! You can go about your own business! But I can assure you that I’m probably not the same person that you’re seeking!”.

    “No, you’re the one who’s mistaken! You match the exact description of the person that I’m supposed to meet at this bridge tonight! I’ve come to kill you!”, replied the Black Scorpion Assassin in a chilling voice.

    “Kill me? Why?”, asked the old bearded man in shock.

    “Because you’ve offended someone and that person wants you dead! Now draw your weapon!”, shouted the Black Scorpion Assassin walking forward.

    “You must kill me? You don’t even know who I am? We have no previous feuds!”, asked the old bearded man not wanting to engage in a life and death battle with the Black Scorpion Assassin.

    “Yes! I must kill you! Regardless of who you are and whether we have any previous feuds or not! I have already accepted the 5,000 taels of gold! Now draw your weapon!”, replied the Black Scorpion Assassin. He had now stood five paces away from the old bearded man.

    Pausing to think of the right words to say, the old bearded man continued, “Is there no other way? I don’t want to fight with you tonight!”.

    “Why? Are you afraid of death? Even so it matters not! There’s no other way! I’m an assassin! I earn a living through killing other people! I therefore must kill you!”, replied the Black Scorpion Assassin.

    “Draw your weapon!”, shouted the Black Scorpion Assassin having had enough of the small talk.

    “Wait!”, cried the old bearded man in an urgent rush to prevent the fight.

    But it was too late, the Black Scorpion Assassin had already launched his spear forward aiming for the mid-stomach region of the old bearded man. He twisted left and avoided the blow. The Black Scorpion Assassin then launched his spear left, but the old bearded man ducked and avoided the blow. The Black Scorpion Assassin gave a loud yell before launching his spear once more aiming for the left shoulder of the old bearded man. He twisted right and avoided the blow.

    “You’ve yielded three moves to me already! Why don’t you draw your weapon? What do you want?”, shouted the Black Scorpion Assassin as he launched another series of strikes at the old bearded man’s head, chest, and thighs.

    Dodging from the various thrusts the old bearded man replied, “I just want to know who it is that sent you to kill me!”.

    Launching his spear forward left and right towards the old bearded man’s head, the Black Scorpion Assassin continued, “I can’t tell you as it would break the ancient code of the assassins! Besides I only heard his voice! I didn’t see his face!”.

    “So it may not necessarily be Mo Yung Bak who sent the Black Scorpion Assassin to kill me!”, thought the old bearded man as he did a couple of back flips to avoid the spear. He was still fighting bare handed, so all he could do was dodge. He knew that the Black Scorpion Assassin was a strong fighter. But he didn’t want to harm him either.

    Seeing that the old bearded man had yet to draw his weapon and was able to successfully dodge everyone of his attacks, the Black Scorpion Assassin became quite annoyed. He shouted, “Who on earth are you? There are not many people capable in wulin capable of lasting 30 moves bare handed against me!”.

    “Why don’t you attack! Draw your weapon!”, continued the Black Scorpion Assassin launching another series of thrusts towards the stomach, chest, and shoulders.

    “Who am I? I’m a friend of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins! I do not want to fight you!”, replied the old bearded man as he twisted left and right whilst moving backwards.

    “Friend? You’re very much mistaken! We have no friends!”, replied the Black Scorpion Assassin launching his spear forward continuously towards the old bearded man’s head.

    Observing the old bearded man more closely for the first time, he continued, “Also haven’t you heard the rumour spread throughout wulin that for money members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins would kill their family, relatives, and friends?”.

    “I’ve also heard of that rumour and don’t believe it to be true! I think most of the members of the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins just have unfortunate lives and have chosen to kill for a living! They’re not as bad as what the rumours say!”, remarked the old bearded man with a smirk as he ducked from a high attack.

    “Who the heck are you? Speak!”, shouted the Black Scorpion Assassin as he lowered his weapon. He was slightly intrigued by the old bearded man’s response. It was obvious that he was not a total stranger and knew much about the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins. So he wanted to find out the identity of the old bearded man before deciding take any further action.

    Taking out a black paper fan from his travelling bag before zipping it into the air and catching it back in his grasp, the old bearded man said, “Do you know who I am now?”.

    Glancing around to make sure that no one was nearby, the Black Scorpion Assassin leant forward and asked in a low voice, “So you’re the Black Bat Assassin’s apprentice?”.

    “No! I’m a close friend of his! I’m Fisherman Ho!”, replied the old bearded man. One could vaguely see in the darkness that the old bearded man duelling with the Black Scorpion Assassin was none other than Yeung Yin Siu. He had chased after a mask man from the Golden Dragon Inn all the way to the Crocodile Bridge expecting to meet Mo Yung Bak. But who could have guessed that he would have met up with the Black Scorpion Assassin who had been sent to kill him. By whom? He did not yet know. He thus became a little intrigued by this event and wanted to get to the bottom of it.

    “Ha! Fisherman Ho…”, remarked the Black Scorpion Assassin before stopping short. He was totally shocked. He suddenly remembered the duel between Fisherman Ho and Cloud at the annual general meeting. He immediately recognised the evasive stances that the old breaded man had just used against him. It was certain, the old bearded man was none other than Fisherman Ho.

    After a while the Black Scorpion Assassin remarked, “I should have known it was you! Only someone like you would be capable of beating Cloud through swiftness alone! Also only someone like you would be able to outlast me without a weapon!”.

    “So you also managed to survive the ambush on the outskirts of Hennan after all! We thought you had died along with the others! Your skills have shown great improvement!”, continued the Black Scorpion Assassin looking at Yeung Yin Siu in awe.

    “No wonder someone wants to impersonate me to cause trouble! They all think that I’m dead and thus won’t be able to foil their plans!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu inwardly.

    “Yes! It was through fate that I survived! What about the others? Have you seen Fung Lau Yin and Kiu Pin Fok?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu urgently.

    “They’re alive! In fact they have already left for Chongqing! They were expecting to meet you there!”, replied the Black Scorpion Assassin.

    Turning to cast a glance at Yeung Yin Siu, the Black Scorpion Assassin said, “Apparently you’ve murdered Beggar Hung, and the Headmasters of the Emei Sect, Kunlun Sect, and Lion Prestige Escort! Is that true?”.

    “I’ve heard that same rumour! But I can assure you its not me! I’ve been trapped down a dark little cave for the past two months!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu.

    Pausing for a long while Yeung Yin Siu continued, “I’ve discovered that someone has been impersonating me for the past two months! I have been in pursuit of the imposter all day. In fact he sought an appointment with me at this bridge tonight!”.

    The Black Scorpion Assassin replied, “I believe that you’re innocent! I now understand why you’re here and why I have been hired to assassinate you! Your enemy obviously does not wish to have his plan foiled by you!”.

    Giving a long sigh, the Black Scorpion Assassin continued, “3rd senior apprentice brother once saved my life! Therefore I cannot bring myself to kill you tonight! But I must warn you that you need to be careful from now on! Remember that your best friends are sometimes also your worst enemy! And your worst enemies can also sometimes be your friends! But I wouldn’t know that as I’ve never had any close friends!”.

    “Goodbye! And take care!”, shouted the Black Scorpion Assassin whilst turning to leave.

    Suddenly the Black Scorpion Assassin untied his red cape from his back before removing the black scorpion insignia from his belt. He threw his red cape in the air and the insignia on the ground. Moments later he took the black spear before thrusting it swiftly left and right in the air. He tore his red black cape into several pieces before dropping his long black spear on the ground.

    “What are you doing?”, questioned Yeung Yin Siu as he rushed up to the side of the Black Scorpion Assassin.

    “Since I cannot bring myself to kill you! I can no longer interfere in the matters and events of wulin! I will therefore retire! Goodbye!”, replied the Black Scorpion Assassin whilst cupping his hands to leave.

    “Why? Where will you go?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu, full of concern. He did not totally understand the future intentions of the Black Scorpion Assassin. He was a little puzzled. Yeung Yin Siu had always treated the Black Scorpion Assassin and everyone of the elite 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins like an uncle he never had, even though he rarely ever met any of them in the past 20 years. He was grateful that they had all made a decision not to pursue after his father in Chongqing over 20 years ago.

    Turning to face Yeung Yin Siu, the Black Scorpion Assassin said, “Warriors must adhere to the ‘ancient code of chivalry’! But assassins have one further code they must adhere to! That is the ‘ancient code of the assassins’! Have no friends! Have no family! Have no relatives! Kill or be killed! Succeed or die! I have now broken this code because I have failed a mission and chose to live! According to the code I should have committed suicide! But did not! Therefore I can no longer continue to be an assassin!”.

    Pausing for a little while to rest. The Black Scorpion Assassin continued after giving a sigh, “But I could not bring myself to kill someone I know and thus I do not consider that I have failed. I would never had accepted the mission had I known it was you! Besides life is too precious to be committing suicide! I’ve spent the last 50 years of my life as an assassin without failing to accomplish one mission until tonight! So I’ll take my chances with the Assassin’s Guild and the one who hired to me to kill you! They can seek me out if they wish for this failure! Therefore I must leave and retire! Where I am going? I do not know! But China is a big place. I’m sure I can find somewhere to rest!”.

    “Do you understand now?”, asked the Black Scorpion Assassin as he slowly disappeared into the darkness with his back turned.

    “Yes I do!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. But he could now see that the Black Scorpion Assassin had disappeared from sight.

    Looking around Yeung Yin Siu noticed that the Black Scorpion Assassin had left his golden insignia and his long black spear behind. He walked over and placed the black scorpion insignia into his pockets. He picked the long black spear off the ground to use as a weapon. He did not want to leave these items behind. Afraid that someone may use them to impersonate the Black Scorpion Assassin to cause further trouble. He couldn’t help but feel a little annoyed that someone had actually hired the Black Scorpion Assassin to kill him. He knew that the 13 Ghost Mountains had now been furthered weakened following the retirement of the Black Scorpion Assassin along with that of the Black Bat Assassin. The small clan now only had the services of the Black Bull Assassin, Black Bear Assassin, and the Black Panther Assassin.

    Casting a glance at the evening sky, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that it was now quite late. He remembered the note left behind by Fa Fei Sit in his hotel room. Immediately turning his thoughts on the safety of Bak Tin Kiew, he utilised his lightness kung fu and headed towards the port at Hennan. Upon arriving he was greatly disappointed. He could not see his old boat docked by the port.

    “Where on earth is Ah Kau? Why did he not wait here for me to return?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself as he looked left and right along both banks of the Yellow River.

    The soft evening rain continued to fall. His robes were drenched. Water was trickling off his face and arms. Looking around he noticed a large willow tree by the bank. He decided that he would camp under the tree to shield from the rain and rest for the night. He would catch a ferry in the morning and make his way down to Kaifeng in the morning. Walking around he gathered a number of tree branches before piling them underneath the old willow tree. Taking out a couple of rocks from his pockets, he struggled to light a small fire. The pile of branches finally ignited after the eight attempt. The fire was emitting white smoke as the branches were still slightly wet. Loud crackling sounds echoed through the air. Yeung Yin Siu immediately sat over the fire with his arms outstretched to warm and dry himself. He smiled as the memories of the past two months down at the small cave with Bak Tin Kiew entered his mind. That night he slept very easily using his travelling bag as a pillow and an old robe as a blanket. He had become accustomed to sleeping that way, having hardly slept in a comfortable bed all of his life.

    He was awoken around 5.00am in the morning when he heard a pair of footsteps approaching the Hennan port. Opening his eyes slightly he noticed a young girl wearing a flowing light blue dress. A light blue veil was covering the lower portion of her face. Her hair was tied into a couple of bundles by blue and white ribbons and flowed pass her back. She was of medium height and looked to be around 19-20 years of age. One could noticed that she had a very slim body with soft curves. A long white sword with two black butterflies were carved into the hilt of the sword. A pair of jade handcrafted into the shape of the butterfly dangled by the side of her right leg. It was obvious that she was one of the ‘3 Jade Maidens’ of the Divine Butterfly Sect. She was at this moment, standing on the jetty, looking out towards the Yellow River. It appeared as if she was waiting to catch an early morning ferry. But she had arrived too early for some reason.

    Looking on the ground, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that the small fire had virtually burnt out. Looking up into the sky he noticed that the rain was still falling softly. He was feeling quite cold at this moment as the wind was blowing gently across him. So he got up and picked up another large pile of old branches before stacking over the burnt ash. It made a loud ‘hiss’ sound as a small fire ignited once more. He sat over the fire with his arms stretched to warm himself. Moments later he closed his eyes, as he tried to get some rest. He knew the earliest ferry was at 7.00am, so he had another two hours to wait.

    “Mister! Is it okay if I come up to dry and warm myself by the fire whilst I wait for a ferry?”, shouted the young girl in blue dress down at the jetty upon noticing that a warm fire had been lit underneath the old willow tree.

    Yeung Yin Siu knew he looked a mess with the thick facial hair covering his face, and that he probably smelt as foul as a beggar clan member. So he shouted, “Come up if you’re not afraid to share a fire with dirty beggar!”.

    “So you’re from the Beggar Clan! We’re on the same side! Of course not!”, shouted the young girl in blue dress as she raced up from the jetty.

    “You’re totally mistaken! I’m a beggar! But I’m not from the Beggar Clan!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a smirk upon seeing that the young girl in green had approached the small fire.

    Noticing that the ground was slightly wet, the young girl in blue decided not to sit down. Yeung Yin Siu gave a little laugh upon noticing that the young girl was now squatting by the fire with her arms out stretched. Reaching into his travelling bag, he took a dry black cape before reaching out his hand to pass it over to the girl. He said, “Little girl! Why don’t you take this and cover the ground. That way you can sit and comfortably dry by the fire!”.

    “Mister! Thank you so much! You’re so kind!”, replied the young girl in blue. She laid the cape on the ground before sitting down.

    Yeung Yin Siu did not reply. He closed his eyes and tried to get some sleep. He was still feeling a little tired. He could smell the soft flagrance of rose perfume as the young girl dried by the fire. Images of him and Bak Tin Kiew kissing by the fire on the outskirts of Hennan flashed pass his mind. A smile appeared on his face as he quietly slept.

    The young girl in blue fixed her gaze at him. In her eyes the old bearded man before her was just a beggar who was homeless and forced to sleep on the streets. But he appeared to be a kind and gentle soul. She couldn’t help but ask, “Mister! May I have the pleasure of knowing your name?”.

    Opening his eye and yawning slightly, Yeung Yin Siu replied with a smirk whilst rolling over to his left, “My name? I don’t have a name! Most people just call me Beggar Ho! So you may call me that as well instead of ‘Mister’! You make me fell like some university teacher or merchant when you say that!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu did not want to say that Fisherman Ho because of the nasty rumours floating around wulin. But since the young girl asked and the fact that he looked like a beggar he felt it was appropriate to now call himself Beggar Ho. Until he cleared his name of course. He also found it a little amusing that despite the fact that he looked like a beggar the girl still called him mister. How was he to know that the young girl in blue is generally a very polite girl.

    “Beggar Ho! That sounds like a good name!”, remarked the young girl in blue with a soft smile.

    Noticing that the old bearded man before her had not asked about her name in return, she continued, “My surname is ‘Yuk’ and fist names are ‘Long’!”.

    “So you’re the one they call the ‘Jade Dragon’! One of the renowned ‘3 Jade Maidens’ of the Divine Butterfly Sect! Your master has named you well!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a slight grin. He always liked the name ‘Long’ meaning ‘dragon’.

    “Oh! So you’ve familiar with the ‘3 Jade Maidens’? How did you know that my name was given to me by my master?”, asked Yuk Long in shock. This old bearded man seemed to be very familiar with the customs of the Divine Butterfly Sect. He did not seem to be a total outsider.

    “It’s simple! I’ve heard that most of the personal apprentices of the Chief of the Divine Butterfly Sect are orphans! So obviously I’m guessing you’re no different! If fact I’d go as far to say that your master took you as an apprentice when you were 5 years of age!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu as he yawned. He fixed his gaze on the Yuk Wah for the first time. Even though a veil had covered the lower portion of her face, one could notice that she was quite an attractive young lady. In fact other than Tit Yum Ching, she was the most attractive lady Yeung Yin Siu has ever seen. She was prettier than Siu Wai and Bak Tin Kiew. In some respects her peaceful disposition reminded him of his mother, Lok Gum Fa, a little. He smiled upon this realisation.

    “You’re very good! Yes, I was an orphan when master accepted me as a personal apprentice! That year I was exactly five years old! Master has raised me and taught me kung fu ever since!”, replied Yuk Long. A smile flashed across her face as memories of how she had been accepted as an apprentice flashed past her mind.

    “What happened to your parents?”, Yeung Yin Siu finally decided to ask.

    Being an orphan himself, Yeung Yin Siu was always curious as to how other people in this world became orphans. It reminded him that he was not the only unfortunate person in this world. He had come across a lot of people in his 20 years that have ruined their lives through various reasons. Many of these people have used a lot of excuses and he had become tired of listening to them. He knew that as long as one has a will there is always a way. One the most common excuses he heard in his lifetime, was that if one was not an orphan, then they would have lived a better life. Yeung Yin Siu was one who knew this was far from the truth. He once heard Kiu Pin Fok say, “People are a product of the choices, they make, didn’t make, couldn’t make, and will make!”. It is the choices that people make that determine the quality of their lives. Those born into a poor family can still succeed in life through the choices they make. Those who are born in a rich family can still drive themselves and their family to ruin by the choices that they make.

    “My father! I don’t know what happened to him… He died before I was born! My mother died of illness on the streets of Chongqing!”, replied Yuk Long giving a little bit of a sigh. One could see that she had become a little saddened upon remembering the death of her mother.

    Seeing the sad expression on Yuk Long’s face, Yeung Yin Siu decided to say, “Sorry little girl, I didn’t mean to upset you by bringing back those sad memories that you have buried deep in your heart… The reason I ask is that I’m also an orphan! So I was just curious!”.

    “You mean you’re also an orphan and have been begging on the streets all of your life?”, gasped Yuk Long in shock. She had always thought that she had been very unfortunate in life at having grown up without her parents by her side. But at least she had her master and a host of junior apprentice sisters to keep her company at the Butterfly Valley. Yet all this old bearded man seem to have was himself and the open country. She couldn’t help but feel a little sorry for him.

    Guessing what was on Yuk Long’s mind, Yeung Yin Siu, gave a little laugh before replying, “Don’t be mistaken. Although I’m an orphan, I understand that I have two hands and two feet and may therefore do as my heart pleases! Today I look a mess! But I’ve not always been this way. Like you I was also raised by my master, and I also have an auntie and uncle who loves me dearly!”.

    “Who’s your master?”, asked Yuk Long all of a sudden.

    “My master? He’s a no namer in wulin and has passed away many years ago! He’s name is not worth mentioning!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a sigh. Even though Fisherman Nam’s kung fu was just modest, he had taken care off and taught Yeung Yin Siu a great deal about life. So he couldn’t be more than grateful about his master’s teachings. But he knew if he mentioned that his master was Fisherman Nam the young girl would immediately work out that he was none other than Fisherman Ho.

    At this moment Yuk Long felt a very close connection with the old bearded man in front of her. She did not know why she felt this way. But she figured it was because for the first time in her life, she had met someone who totally understood her. The old bearded man seemed like a long time friend to her. He was very easy to talk to. She found it very difficult to discuss her loneliness with her junior apprentice sisters, afraid that others may accuse her of being weak and frail. So she had always kept a very firm and authoritative disposition at the Butterfly Valley. Just when she was about to ask another question, two pairs of footsteps could be heard approaching the Hennan port. Turning to the source of the sound, she noticed two young ladies walking in the distance. One of them was wearing an orange dress and the other wearing a purple dress. She immediately recognised them.

    “2nd junior apprentice sister! 3rd junior apprentice sister! Good morning to you both!”, shouted Yuk Long to the two young ladies who were now standing at the jetty to wait for a ferry.

    “Senior apprentice sister! Is that you?”, asked Yuk Wah and Yuk Ling simultaneously as they fixed their gaze under the old willow tree. It appeared as if they were both a little surprised and shocked as if they did not expect to meet their senior apprentice sister at the port of Hennan.

    “Yes! It’s me! Yuk Long!”, replied Yuk Long whilst waving her hand to indicate them to approach the fire.

    Yuk Wah and Yuk Ling approached the willow tree not long after before exchanging a series of hugs with Yuk Long. They both stood over the fire with their arms folded. After a while they noticed the old bearded man leaning up against the tree to rest. They shot a suspicious glance at an old bearded man before turning their attention to their senior apprentice.

    “Sister Long, what on earth are you doing here in Hennan still? Aren’t you supposed to be in Kaifeng already?”, asked Yuk Wah as she placed a finger under her nose. She could smell the foul and fishy odour of the old bearded man leaning by the tree. It smelt quite unpleasant.

    “I had intended to travel to Kaifeng a couple of days ago! But I came across a handsome young man who appeared to be acting a little suspiciously! So I decided to follow him! But he managed to lose me! Then I heard that a young handsome man in black robes named Fisherman Ho had murdered Beggar Hung! So I stayed around to assist the Beggar Clan members in tracking him down! But we haven’t been able to locate him or the green jade bamboo stick since!”, replied Yuk Long whilst giving a sigh.

    “So this young lady had also been tracking down that handsome young man in black robes who impersonated me!”, thought Yeung Yin Siu inwardly upon hearing those comments.

    Turning to Yuk Wah, Yuk Long decided to ask, “Sister Wah, what brings you and sister Ling to Hennan? I thought you two were supposed to meet master in Kaifeng as well!”.

    Holding a finger under her nose as well, Yuk Ling interrupted, “Sister Wah, and I were sent to find the Chancellor’s daughter! She’s been missing for a while now! So we thought we’d try our luck in Xi’an before deciding to head to Hennan! But we haven’t managed to find her! So we thought we’d pass through here for a quick look before going up to Kaifeng! She’s probably dead by now!”.

    “Sister Ling, don’t say such things! The Chancellor’s daughter may yet be alive! Perhaps she’s run away not wanting to be found!”, replied Yuk Long whilst giving a sigh.

    “Where’s master now?”, continued Yuk Long after the short pause. She had hoped that her master was not yet in Kaifeng where they had agreed to meet up. She knew she would be punished for being late if that was the case.

    “She’ll be here shortly! She’s catching a ferry down the Yellow River from the Fengxiang! That’s why we’re here!”, replied Yuk Wah whilst casting an unapproving look at the old bearded man.

    “Sister Long, master will be here soon! So why don’t we wait for her down at the jetty instead?”, remarked Yuk Ling upon noticing that the soft rain had subsided. The morning sun had also arisen in the sky. She had actually made this suggestion as she wanted to get as far away from the old beggar laying on the ground as possible.

    “Err… Wait down at the jetty?”, replied Yuk Long not really wanting to leave the warmth and comfort by the fire.

    But she knew the personalities of her two junior apprentice sisters well. She said, “Okay! You two go down first! I’ll meet you both down there shortly!”.

    Yuk Wah and Yuk Ling immediately walked back down to the jetty upon hearing their senior apprentice sister’s orders. They could be heard saying to each other as they disappeared, “Why on earth would sister Long want to stay by the fire with that old beggar! He’s dirty and stinks like hell! She’ll probably catch a cold or some nasty disease if she’s not careful!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu hit the ground with a fist upon hearing this. He hated shallow people who pre-judged others on appearance or on the rumours they hear without first getting the facts straight.

    Noticing that the old bearded man had been upset by the comments, Yuk Long said in an apologetic tone, “Excuse my junior apprentice sisters! They’ve been spoilt to death by master since childhood so they don’t know any better!”.

    “I can tell that you’ve also been spoilt to death by your master since childhood! But you’re nothing like them! It’s your personality and not your upbringing that makes you different! Don’t worry! I’m not offended!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu fixing a gaze back upon Yuk Long and smiling.

    Yuk Long stayed silent and did not respond. She knew that the old bearded man in front of her was partially right. She had also been spoilt to death by her master since childhood. But it was because she wanted to live life according to her own ways, and to earn the things that had been given to her through life that makes her a very different person. She would often reject gifts from her master on the condition that she did not earn them. Yuk Wah and Yuk Long on the other hand would take what was given to them without question. They did not even care whether they had earn it or not. As they grew up they expected a number of things in life without realising that they had to work and sacrifice in order to get what they wanted. They thus look down upon people who had very little, or were in the process of striving for better things in life.

    “I’m sorry but I really must be going! I have some important business to take care off in Kaifeng!”, replied Yuk Long turning to leave to join her two junior apprentice sisters.

    “We’ve both got important business to take care off in Kaifeng! Even a beggar like me!”, smirked Yeung Yin Siu as he pulled his cape over his shoulders and closed his eyes again upon seeing that Yuk Long had turned to leave.

    But for some reason, Yuk Long, remained standing over him and did not leave. After a while she said, “You’ve also got business in Kaifeng? Why don’t you travel with us then?”.

    Opening an eye, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “Travel with you? Won’t your master and junior apprentice sisters get upset?”.

    Still believing that the old bearded man was a Beggar Clan member, Yuk Long replied, “We’re on the same sides! So we should do our best to help each other! Besides, you needn’t waste money on a ferry trip down the Yellow River to Kaifeng! I’ll explain to master when she arrives! She’d be more than happy to have you join us!”.

    “Okay! If you insist!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu as he closed his eyes to get some sleep. By now he was nearly out of money, so didn’t want to spend 6 to 10 taels to catch a ferry that he didn’t have to catch had Ah Kau remained in Hennan.

    Yeung Yin Siu dozed off for an hour it seemed before he was awoken by a gentle hand tugging him by the sleeve. He could hear the soft and gentle voice of a female saying, “Beggar Ho! Get up! Master has agreed to allow you to travel with us to Kaifeng!”.

    Opening his eyes he realised it was none other than Yuk Long who was tugging him. Getting up he placed all of his belongings back into his travelling bag. Kicking out the fire he walked down to the jetty. A large ferry had been docked to the side. There was a large cabin below with bedrooms and enough space for a small restaurant. This kind of ferry is normally used for travel by rich merchants, and Ming government officials. Yeung Yin Siu found it a little odd that the Divine Butterfly Sect could afford to travel in such luxury. But he didn’t mind. All he wanted to do was to be able to reach Kaifeng. Yuk Wah and Yuk Ling had already boarded the boat and stood on the deck. One could see the shocked expression on their faces upon seeing that the old bearded man was going to join them for the journey. The ‘Moon Maiden’, To Guk Fa, remained on the dock of the boat to greet him as the Chief of the Divine Butterfly Sect. There were around 20 Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices on the boat.

    “Beggar Ho! Good morning! My senior apprentice has told me that you wish to travel to Kaifeng! Since we Divine Butterfly Sect and the Beggar Clan are from the same side, I have agreed to allow you to travel with us!”, said To Guk Fa whilst cupping her hands together and bowing slightly.

    One could noticed that To Guk Fa still had the youthful face of a 20 year old despite being in her early 40s. She was still a virgin and remained unmarried, and thus kept her youthful appearance. Two streaks of white hair could be seen amongst the think black silky hair. A white dress with dark blue trimmings covered her slim body. She wore a white veil to cover the lower portion of her face. A long black sword with two white butterflies carved into the hilt of the sword rested in her right hand.

    Not looking directly at To Guk Fa, Yeung Yin Siu cupped his hands together before saying, “Greetings Chief To! Thank you for your hospitality!”. He did not personally like To Guk Fa after hearing stories about how she had left his mother, Lok Gum Fa, to defend herself against 5 nuns from the Emei Sect 20 years ago in Chongqing, from Fung Lau Yin. He was still angered by this event and thus did not wish to acknowledge To Guk Fa. In some ways he blamed To Guk Fa for the death of his mother as she was mortally wounded in the battle against the nuns from the Emei Sect.

    To Guk Fa couldn’t help but be a little bit annoyed at the disrespectful gesture shown towards her by the old bearded beggar. She gave a little sneer, but realised that she needed to play a good host. Stretching her hand in the direction of the comfortable cabin below, she said in a polite tone, “Beggar Ho! This way! After you!”.

    “That’s okay! I’m a beggar! So am not used to travelling in comfort and luxury! Besides it would not be very appropriate for an old stinky beggar like myself to share the cabin with over 20 females from the Divine Butterfly Sect!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu with a big grin.

    Turning to cast a glance at To Guk Fa he continued, “Thank you for your good intentions! But I’ll spend the entire journey on the deck!”.

    “Humph! If that’s what you’ve decided, you may spend the entire journey on the deck then! No one’s going to stop you! But I’ll arrange someone to bring you some food and refreshments! Goodbye!”, replied To Guk Fa as she headed down to the cabin to join her other apprentices. Her face had turned red, indicating that she had been upset by Yeung Yin Siu’s comments. Yuk Wah and Yuk Ling immediately followed her master.

    “Long yee! What are you waiting for?”, shouted To Guk Fa whilst waving a hand upon seeing that her senior apprentice had remained on the deck of the boat standing next to the old bearded man.

    “Master! I’ll be with you shortly!”, replied Yuk Long upon casting a side glance at Yeung Yin Siu.

    “You have something to ask me?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu upon noticing the disturbed and confused look on Yuk Long’s face.

    “Yes! Why did you disrespect my master just now? She’s done nothing to you! In fact she has treated you with the utmost respect!”, replied Yuk Long. She had always loved her master like a mother and thus felt insulted that Yeung Yin Siu had just disrespected her master.

    Turning to face Yuk Long, Yeung Yin Siu said with all sincerity, “Miss Yuk, I know you love and respect your master dearly! However this is a personal matter between your master and myself only! One day you’ll understand why! I apologise if I have offended you!”.

    “You have a previous feud with my master?”, asked Yuk Long in shock.

    Yeung Yin Siu did not reply. He just remained silent. But one could tell that he was deeply angered. Snapping out of his daze, he said, “Miss Yuk, you should join your master! I’ll explain everything to you later if I have the chance!".

    Moments later Yuk Long walked down to the cabin to join her master and all of her junior apprentice sisters. Yeung Yin Siu used his travelling bag as a pillow and his black cape as a blanket and slept on the deck of the boat. By the time he woke he found a small jug of wine, cooked white rice, and sate beef resting to the side. Looking up at the sun he realised that it was lunch time. Their journey down the Yellow River had been a peaceful one thus far. Yeung Yin Siu was feeling bored again after lunch, so he asked the boat master for another couple jugs of wine. He leant on the deck of the boat and drank all of its contents. He soon laid down to rest for a second time. When he woke he found another small jug of wine, white rice, and roast pork resting by his side. He noticed that it had turned quite dark upon opening his eyes. He estimated that it was now around 7.30pm in the evening. It was dinner time. Picking up a pair of chopsticks he ate his dinner. Suddenly something caught his gaze as he peered into the dark down the Yellow River. It appeared as if a tiny rowing boat was fast approaching the ferry. Having finished his diner, Yeung Yin Siu, walked along the deck towards the rear of the boat for a closer look. His eyes had indeed not deceived him. It appeared as if their was a young man in black robes rowing the boat towards the ferry. Moments later the handsome young man disappeared. Yeung Yin Siu immediately became a little suspicious. But he could no longer see the young man in black robes anywhere in sight. The rowing boat had stopped in its tracks.

    “Beggar Ho! Here you are! You look a little worried! Is there anything wrong?”, asked voice of a young lady as she approached to stand by his side.

    Turning around, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that it was only Yuk Long. Pointing his index finger into the darkness, he said, “Do you see that small rowing boat in the distance? The rower has suddenly disappeared!”.

    Peering into the darkness, Yuk Long replied, “I can’t see anything! Are you sure that you saw a rowing boat in the water?”.

    “Never mind! What are you doing here?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu as he walked back towards the front of the ferry. His natural instincts warned him of the lurking danger in the dark. He knew that something was about to happen and thus wanted to retrieve the long black spear in his hands in preparation for an ambush attack.

    “Nothing! I was just feeling a little bored so decided to come out for some fresh air?”, replied Yuk Long whilst casting a look at Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Oh! You have the company of over 20 junior apprentice sisters! Yet you still managed to feel bored? How’s this possible?”, asked Yeung Yin Siu in a curious voice as he picked up the long black spear.

    “Just because one is in the company of others that does not necessarily mean that they’re not lonely or bored! Most of the people at the Divine Butterfly Sect don’t really understand me fully or know what’s in my heart!”, replied Yuk Long whilst giving a loud sigh.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to ask, “Oh! And What’s in your heart?”, when a handsome young man in black robes leapt up onto the deck of the ferry. Yeung Yin Siu immediately recognised this person. It was the same person that had impersonated him that he had fought against at the bamboo bridge on the previous day. Moving like a black shadow the imposter immediately rushed down to the cabin. Suddenly the sounds of clashing swords and frantic cries could be heard in the cabin below.

    “Intruder! Intruder! Attack!”, Yuk Wah and Yuk Ling could be heard shouting from below.

    Wasting no time, Yuk Long, unsheathed her sword and rushed down to help her junior apprentice sisters. Yeung Yin Siu followed her closely behind clutching onto his long black spear. Upon arriving at the cabin below, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that around 5 Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices had already been blinded by a silver needle projectile. They were rolling around in pain on the floor whilst cursing out loud, “My eyes! My eyes! Dam you! Fisherman Ho you big demon!”.

    The imposter was spinning in endless 360 degree cycles to create a large black hurricane in the cabin. The majority of the Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices were struggling to stand upright. Many of them stabbed their swords into the wooden floor for support. Silver needles struck shortly after and sealed their pressure points. They were sent crashing against the cabin wall. Yuk Wah launched forward to try and pierce her sword through the black hurricane. But her skills were far too inferior as she was sent crashing on the other side of the cabin by a palm attack. Her pressure points had been sealed as a result. Yuk Ling then launched a strike towards the black hurricane with her sword pointed downwards. She was met with another two needle projectiles. She was caught in the grasp of chi energy and thus could not retract her sword to defend against the attack.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried Yuk Ling as she crashed hard into the floor. Her pressure points had also been sealed.

    “Ha! Ha! Ha! Who would have thought that the members of the Divine Butterfly Sect and the ‘3 Jade Maidens’ are so useless! Where’s the ‘Moon Maiden’? Is she nothing more than a coward? Why does she not come out to confront me?”, shouted the imposter in an arrogant tone whilst continuing his offensive. He blinded another 5 Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices with a silver needle projectile.

    “So he intends to kill the Chief of the Divine Butterfly Sect tonight!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly as he observed the battle taking place before his eyes. He did not want to take any action just yet. He stood to the side with his arms folded.

    “Shut your stinky mouth! We’re more than capable of dealing with you! How dare you insult my master! Prepare to die!”, shouted Yuk Long as she launched her sword forwards towards the black hurricane.

    A loud ‘clang’ echoed through the air as the butterfly sword in Yuk Long’s grasp seemed to have pierced through the black hurricane. On closer inspection one could see that the imposter had been forced to block the attack with his black sword. He then launched a dark palm towards the right shoulder of Yuk Long, but she managed to twist away before landing back on the floor.

    “Very good! Very good! So at least the ‘Jade Dragon’ lives up to her reputation!”, praised the imposter as he stopped spinning in endless cycles. He realised that he could knock the lone fighter remaining off her feet.

    A sea of projectiles was suddenly launched forward attacking nine vital pressure points on Yuk Long’s body. She twisted right and left in an urgent rush to doge from the attacks. Suddenly the imposter charged forward. Anticipating where Yuk Long would evade to dodge from the last two needles, he struck out a palm and caught her square on the right shoulder. A loud ‘thud’ sound echoed through the air as Yuk Long was sent crashing to the side of the cabin as well. She immediately coughed up a mouthful of blood before picking herself off the floor. She no longer had the strength to fight however. Her pressure points had also been sealed during the attack. The imposter immediately launched forward with her sword pointed at Yuk Long’s heart. He had intended to kill her upon seeing that she was totally defenceless. Seeing the urgent situation emerging before his eyes, Yeung Yin Siu, immediately sent his black spear zipping into the air. A loud ‘clang’ echoed through the air as the long black spear blocked the black sword from piercing through Yuk Long’s heart. The black spear immediately zipped back towards Yeung Yin Siu upon defending the blow.

    Turning around to face the old bearded man, the imposter cursed, “Not you again! Who the heck are you? Why do you insist on being so nosy?”.

    Having fought and lost miserably to the old bearded man on the previous day, the imposter attempted to leave by crashing through the side of the cabin wall. Yeung Yin Siu zipped his long spear to block the imposter’s escape path. He was forced to do a summersault to avoid the spear. Yeung Yin Siu immediately rushed to protect the side of the cabin. The imposter turned around and attempted to escape on the opposite side.

    “Not so fast! You’re not going anywhere! You mocked me earlier! I’ve here to confront you!”, shouted To Guk Fa as she suddenly emerged from a secret room in the cabin.

    To Guk Fa channelled her inner energy before releasing a couple of butterfly palms at the imposter to prevent her from escaping. To the naked eye it appeared as if a pair of luminous butterflies were fast approaching the imposter at great speed. To both To Guk Fa’s and Yeung Yin Siu’s surprise the imposter did not block the strike. But she seemed to have absorbed the two butterflies with her left hand. Channelling her inner energy, the imposter suddenly unleashed the butterfly palms with her right hand back towards To Guk Fa. She managed to dodge away from the attacks by rolling to her right. A loud ‘bang’ sound echoed in the air as a large hole was created in the side of the cabin.

    “You’re not Fisherman Ho! You’re from the ‘Mo Yung’ family!”, shouted To Guk Fa as she launched forward with her butterfly sword aimed towards the imposter’s heart. She recognised the moves as the ‘Essence Counterattacking’ strike.

    “Chief To, you’re correct! He’s definitely not Fisherman Ho!”, agreed Yeung Yin Siu as he launched forward with the tip of the spear pointed towards the back of the imposter’s right shoulder blade. He suddenly twisted left and appeared to have separated into three people.

    “Dam!”, cried the imposter upon realising that part of his identity had been revealed. In an urgent rush to escape from the old bearded man, he had actually resorted to using his top kung fu, the ‘Essence Counterattacking’ strike. He would not have used this move otherwise. This type of arts was based on absorbing the chi energy from an opponents attack, before returning the strike with the same level of power directed back at an opponent.

    The imposter blocked the butterfly sword attacking towards his heart. He then launched a shower of needles to force To Guk Fa backwards and defend. By the time he turned his attention to the spear attacking towards his shoulder blades, it was far too late.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried the imposter as the head of the spear lodged into his right shoulder blade. He was sent crashing to the floor. He coughed up a mouthful of blood before suddenly passing out from the pain.

    Seeing that the imposter had been defeated, To Guk Fa charged forward to take his life. Yeung Yin Siu zipped his long black spear to block the fatal blow. Casting an angry glare, To Guk Fa shouted, “Beggar Ho! What on earth do you think you’re doing? He’s come to kill us! Let’s eliminate this pest!”. She launched another attack striking towards the imposter’s adam’s apple pressure point.

    “No! I need him alive to clear the name of my friend!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he caught the long spear in his hands before zipping it back a second time to defend against the fatal blow.

    Moments later Yeung Yin Siu stood in front of the imposter to protect him. To Guk Fa raised her weapons in an attacking position. She said, “Beggar Ho! This is my ship! I may do as I wish! This rascal has come to kill me! Therefore I will kill him in return! Out of my way!”.

    “I’m not moving an inch! I injured him! He is therefore my prisoner!”, rebutted Yeung Yin Siu as he stood with his arms folded before his fallen opponent.

    “Out of my way!”, shouted To Guk Fa as she launched an attack with her butterfly sword towards the lower stomach region of Yeung Yin Siu.

    Twisting to the side to avoid the attack, Yeung Yin Siu, said, “Don’t blame me! You asked for it!”.

    Suddenly Yeung Yin Siu separated into three people. He launched three separate strikes towards To Guk Fa’s hand. He had intended to dislodge the butterfly sword from her grasp. To Guk Fa froze on the spot to observe the various stances. Before she had a chance to respond she felt her right arm going numb. She cried, “Ah Ya!”, out loud as she dropped her butterfly sword to the ground.

    “You dare oppose me?”, shouted To Guk Fa. Her face had gone red from rage. As the Chief of a clan she was also a little embarrassed at having been beaten, by whom she thought, was a no namer in wulin. The rest of the apprentices watching on the side also had shocked expressions on their faces.

    Yeung Yin Siu was just about to seal the pressure points on the imposter to make sure that he could not escape. When he heard the sounds of splashing and kicking in the once calm waters. It appeared as if there were a large group of people swimming towards the ferry. It was signs of further trouble. Wasting no time, Yeung Yin Siu, utilised his lightness kung fu to unseal all of the pressure points on the injured Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices. He shouted in an urgent rush, “Quickly! Pick up your weapons! We’re still under attack!”.

    “What the hell are you talking about!”, shouted To Guk Fa as she had not been able to detect any danger. She was still in a rage so her mind had not been functioning properly. She kept her focus on the young masked man laying unconscious on the floor who had just tried to kill her. Noticing that the old bearded man was some distance away, she took this opportunity to leapt forward with a thrust attacking towards the left stomach of the handsome young man in black robes.

    “Ah Ya!”, screamed the imposter out loud, as he was awoken by the pain of the strike. The black butterfly sword had penetrated through his body. He coughed up a another mouthful of blood, but did not pass out. Using his last ounce of strength he launched a black palm and struck To Guk Fa on the right shoulder. To Guk Fa jumped back upon being struck. But the palm was weak and did not manage to injure her. But this created enough space to allow the imposter to utilised his lightness kung fu before jumping out of the big hole on the side of the cabin. Whether he would be able to escape alive, no one was certain as the imposter seemed to have been mortally wounded.

    At this moment, Yeung Yin Siu, had picked Yuk Long off her feet, before placing her fallen butterfly sword back into her grasp. He had missed what had just taken place, but could now see that the imposter had disappeared. He cursed out loud, “Dam witch! What did you do? Where’s has the handsome man in black robes gone?”.

    “How dare you insult me!”, shouted To Guk Fa looking quite annoyed. She loss all self-control at this point and launched an attack towards Yeung Yin Siu’s right stomach.

    Yeung Yin Siu was at this moment peering into the darkness to try and locate where the imposter had gotten to. He knew that the imposter had been servery injured by his black spear and thus would not be able to swim far. But all he noticed were a number of black men leaping up onto the deck of the ferry from the water. They were wearing plain black robes, and a plain black mask to cover the upper portion of their face. These were the same men who had attacked him and the imposter on the previous day. Turning around to rush up onto the deck of the ferry, Yeung Yin Siu, just managed to see, at the very last minute, the black butterfly sword attacking towards his right stomach. A loud ‘clang’ echoed through the ferry as spear met sword.

    “What are you doing? Is this how you treat someone who’s just saved your life?”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he struck To Guk Fa with a light palm to send her flying backwards.

    “Intruder! Intruder!”, shouted Yuk Long upon noticing that around 20 masked men and leapt up onto the jetty and were making their way down to the cabin. It appeared as if these people had arrived to kill all of the Divine Butterfly Sect members.

    Suddenly violent clashing of swords and shrieks could be heard down at the cabin below. Twisting left and right, Yeung Yin Siu brought down 3 of the masked men with his ‘divine red moon reflecting in the water stance’. He immediately rushed up to the deck to try and locate the whereabouts of the imposter. He needed to capture this particular individual to clear his name. He wasn’t overly concerned about the safety of the Divine Butterfly Sect members at this moment. Besides their Chief, To Guk Fa, had just tried to take his life with an ambush attack. Peering ahead towards the helm of the boat, he suddenly noticed two rowing boats approaching the ferry at a rapid rate. One approached from the left and the other approached from the right. He could not see where the imposter had disappeared to.

    Frantic cries of, “Help! Please help!”, could be heard from the cabin below. Yeung Yin Siu immediately charged back down to the cabin. Zipping the black spear with his chi energy, Yeung Yin Siu, brought down a masked man who was about to strike a fatal blow at Yuk Ling. But he heard not cries of thanks or praise from the person whom he had just saved. Thrusting his sword forward, he struck down another masked man who stood over Yuk Wah. Looking left and right to observe the surroundings, he noticed that all of the blinded Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices had now been murdered. Yuk Long was fighting fiercely despite being surrounded by five masked men. It was obvious that she was the most talented fighter of the ‘3 Jade Maidens’.

    “Ah Ya!”, cried one of the masked men as he was pierced through the heart by Yuk Long’s butterfly sword.

    Suddenly another 20 masked men leapt onto the deck of the boat before racing down to the cabin. The remaining Divine Butterfly Sect members were now servery out numbered. Loud shrieks and cries could be heard as 5 Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices had been slained and fell to the floor. The cabin was now covered in blood. Seeing the urgent situation, Yeung Yin Siu, dashed by Yuk Long’s side to aid her. She had now been surrounded by 10 masked men and had received minor cuts to the arms and legs. Flashing his spear left, right, and forwards, Yeung Yin Siu brought down another 3 masked men. Just at this moment a white blur entered the cabin. Flashes of red and white could be seen as the white blur rushed around the cabin. Loud cries of, “Ah Ya”, could be heard as 10 of the masked men had been slaughtered in a short space of time.

    “Fung Mun Kit? What on earth is she doing here?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly as he watched the white blur race around the cabin.

    Suddenly another female warrior entered the cabin. One could see that it was a Taoist Priestess wearing a white robe with pink trimmings. Her hair had turned all white, indicating that she was quite old. It was tied into a bundle at the top. Like Fung Moon Kit, she the face of a 30 year old woman. She carried a white dust pen in hand. A pair of butterflies had been carved into the wooden handle. She immediately rushed to the aid of To Guk Fa. Slapping with her dust pen left and right, the old Taoist Priestess brought down another 5 masked men.

    “Master! You’re here!”, shouted To Guk Fa upon seeing the Taoist Priestess.

    “Cheung Cum? Could that be her?”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly upon seeing the Taoist Priestess.

    Upon seeing that help had arrived, the leader of the masked man waved his hands into the air before shouting, “Retreat! Retreat!”. The rest of the masked men followed his lead and jumped out through the hole to the side of the cabin.

    “What are you doing? Don’t chase after them!”, shouted To Guk Fa upon seeing that Yuk Long, Yuk Wah, and Yuk Ling had intended to pursue the masked men.

    Yeung Yin Siu stood to the side, starring out into the darkness to try and see whether he could catch a glimpse as to where the imposter had gotten to. But he kept focus on the conversations around him as he searched.

    “Master! What brings you here?”, he could hear To Guk Fa asking the old Toaist Priestess.

    “I was on my way to Kaifeng when I saw a number of suspicious people and decided to follow them! Who would have thought they had intentions of ambushing members from the Divine Butterfly Sect!”, replied Cheung Cum.

    After the death of her two favourite apprentices, Lok Gum Fa and Lin Chun Fa, Cheung Cum decided to pass over her leadership to To Guk Fa and retired from wulin. She subsequently became a Priestess having reached a decision that she would never marry and devote her life to the religion of Buddhism. Her heart had become peaceful since that event and she has been wandering around wulin by herself, to assist many unfortunate people. This had been the first time that she has interfered in a wulin matter in over 20 years.

    “Grandmaster! Good evening!”, said Yuk Long, Yuk Wah, and Yuk Ling whilst standing forward and cupping their hands to acknowledge Cheung Cum.

    “Enough! None of you are worthy to call me Grandmaster! Useless! Really god dam useless!”, shouted Cheung Cum whilst waving her hand.

    “Chief To! What have you been teaching your apprentices these past 20 years? How come they were so easily defeated?”, cursed Cheung Cum whilst glancing at To Guk Fa, upon seeing the many dead bodies of the Divine Butterfly Sect apprentices laying on the wooden floor of the cabin.

    Casting a glance at the ‘3 Jade Maidens’, Cheung Cum continued, “Apart from the ‘Jade Dragon’ none of your other apprentices have made a name for themselves in wulin! Shameful! You’ve spoilt your apprentices too much and therefore they do not dedicate themselves to practising kung fu! I hope you learn your lesson!”.

    “Eh! 2nd junior apprentice sister! Don’t be so hard on your 3rd senior apprentice! Those masked men who they’ll just encountered are indeed an elite group of fighters!”, interrupted Fung Mun Kit standing to the side.

    Giving a long sigh, Cheung Cum remarked, “Senior apprentice sister, perhaps you’re right!”.

    To Guk Fa and the ‘3 Jade Maidens’ fixed their gaze on the White Maiden for the first time. They were slightly curious as to her identity. Noticing the red wolf carved into the hilt of one of the swords for the first time, To Guk Fa decided to ask, “Master! Who’s she? And why does she carry a red wolf sword?”.

    Shifting a glance at Fung Mun Kit, Cheung Cum gave a sigh. She said, “Chief To! Don’t be rude! That’s your senior uncle grandmaster! You should thank her for saving your lives! We would have never driven those masked men away without her assistance!”.

    “Senior uncle grandmaster?”, gasped To Guk Fa and the ‘3 Jade Maidens’ in shock. Moments later they cupped their hands before saying, “Thank you senior uncle grandmaster for saving us today!”.

    “It’s nothing! It was my duty to help!”, replied Fung Mun Fit as she helped the injured apprentices to their feet.

    Turning to Cheung Cum she said, “Junior apprentice sister, I’ve not forgotten our previous feuds! However I have just set it aside for today for the safety of the Divine Butterfly Sect! I’ve got other business to attend to at the moment! But we’ll meet again! Next time we meet, we’ll be foes not friends! Goodbye!”. With that she left the cabin before returning to the rowing boat. She disappeared into the darkness moments later.

    “Senior apprentice sister, goodbye! I have I forgotten our previous feuds either!”, remarked Cheung Cum upon seeing that Fung Mun Kit had left.

    It was obvious that the two had not forgotten the feud they had with each other in the past. But were willing to set it aside to ensure the safety of members from the Divine Butterfly Sect. In fact Fung Mun Kit had also been secretly tracking the imposter through Hennan, before following him with her small rowing boat out towards the Yellow River. That was when she came across the ferry being attacked by the masked men. She had also seen that Cheung Cum had been rowing towards the ferry, but they decided that the survival of the Divine Butterfly Sect was more important then their previous feud. That was why Fung Mun Kit had left in such a hurry upon seeing that the various apprentices were safe from harm. Cheung Cum had remained behind to ensure that To Guk Fa and the others arrive at Kaifeng safely. They were all making their way towards the urgent summit at Shaolin.

    “Quick! Prepare a room for master to rest!”, To Guk Fa could be heard giving instructions to some of her apprentices.

    “No Need! Let them recover from their own injuries first! I can take care of myself!”, replied Cheung Cum as she waved her dust pen before disappearing towards the bedrooms to rest.

    Not totally satisfied, and thinking that she needed to take good care of her master, whom she hasn’t seen for over 20 years, To Guk Fa said, “Long yee, why don’t you go down and take good care of your grandmaster!”.

    “Yes master!”, replied Yuk Long before she disappeared into the bedrooms as well.

    Seeing that Yuk Long had disappeared and that the apprentices from the Divine Butterfly Sect were safe, Yeung Yin Siu returned to stand at the deck of the boat. He went from the front, to the left, then right, and then to the rear. At all times he was peering into the darkness to see whether he could see signs of the imposter swimming away towards the bank of the Yellow River. He then had a thought. Looking up into the sky he noticed the moon shinning above. He then fixed his gaze at the water along the river. He noticed the light reflecting off the surface of the calm water. Not long after he noticed a spot were no light reflected off the surface of the water. But the spot did not appear to move at all.

    “Ah Ha!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he dived into the water and swam towards the black spot.

    As he swam away from the ferry, he could hear Yuk Wah and Yuk Ling shouting behind him, “Master! Master! That smelly and stinky beggar has jumped over the ferry and is swimming away”.

    “Humph! We needn’t be concerned about him! Ungrateful little bastard!”, he could hear To Guk Fa replying moments later.

    After that Yeung Yin Siu did not pay any further attention to the comments being made by members of the Divine Butterfly Sect, but instead concentrated on swimming towards the black spot. Upon arriving about 10 paces away, he noticed that he had guessed correctly. The black spot, had indeed been a person wearing a black robe, laying motionless on top of the surface of the water, preventing the moonlight from reflecting off the surface. For some reason the masked men swimming away seemed to have missed this lone body. Or perhaps they thought it was the body of a fallen comrade who had already died. Yeung Yin Siu placed two fingers underneath the nose of the man in black robes. He became a little calmer upon realising that the man in black robes was still breathing faintly. Indicating that he was just alive at this moment. In fact it was lucky that the man in black robes had been laying on his back. Otherwise he would have died long ago.

    Grabbing the body with his left hand, Yeung Yin Siu started to swim towards the bank of the Yellow River. He reached the side in around 20 minutes time. He found it very difficult to swim holding onto a person with one arm. Walking around to pick up dry debry and lose branches, Yeung Yin Siu, found enough fuel to start a small fire. A yellowish light lit up the side of the bank. What he saw amazed him. He had indeed manage to stumble across the body of the imposter who had been seriously injured. Seeing that blood was gushing freely from the left stomach and right shoulder, Yeung Yin Siu, immediately sealed the pressure points around the regions to prevent further breathing.

    “I need to save this young man, if I’m to clear my name!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought inwardly as he reached into his travelling bag to take out a large bag of medical herbs that he had plucked from the cave on the outskirts of Hennan.

    Moments later he removed the black robes covering the young man’s body. But underneath the glowing yellowish light one could see that he immediately leapt several paces back in shock and horror upon removing the black robes.

    “What… What.. the heck! It… It… cannot be!”, mumbled Yeung Yin Siu to himself out loud.

    One could now see that the handsome young man laying by the fire wore a peach coloured brassier underneath the black robes for some reason. Yeung Yin Siu was now standing over the body with a stunned look on his face. He knew that this person could not possibly be Mo Yung Bak. Looking at the soft and elegant curves on the chest that resembled two large porcelain rice bowls, on the slim body before him, Yeung Yin Siu had another thought, “What if they’re not real! Perhaps its just a trick!”.

    He immediately placed two hands on the chest of the person laying down by the fire before grasping them softly in his hands. He suddenly leapt up in shock for a second time.

    “So they’re really real!”, he thought to himself. They felt very soft and smooth. Slightly bewildered he knelt down by the person in black robes to examine them more closely.

    Running his fingers softly along the face down towards the neck of that person, he suddenly discovered a lose fragment of skin near the shoulder blade. Placing two fingers underneath the lose fragment of skin, he noticed that it felt rather odd. It was not skin at all, but some kind of rubbery substance that was similar in texture to human skin. He thought inwardly as he glanced at the peach coloured brassier, “She must be wearing a mask!”.

    Wasting no time, Yeung Yin Siu, used a little bit of force and pulled the face mask from the young lady laying on the ground. What he saw was a rounded pretty face of an innocent young girl around the age of 18 years of age. Her long silky black hair had been untied underneath the skin mask and flowed pass her shoulders. Holding the mask up in the air, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that it matched the shape of his own face. A hole had been punched at the eye and mouth area of the mask. But apart from that it could sit perfectly on another person’s face. Once worn no one would be able to distinguish or tell that it was mask.

    “This is incredible! How did she make a mask with such a stunning resemblance to me?”, thought Yeung Yin Siu out loud upon placing the mask over his own face. It was an exact fit but for his long beard and moustache.

    Deciding that he needed to save the young lady in order to clear his name, Yeung Yin Siu immediately closed his eyes before undressed the young girl. He untied and removed the peach coloured brassier so that he could apply medical herbs to the left stomach region. He took out a brown robe to cover the young lady’s body from the waist. He covered the chest of the young lady with his black cape before applying medical herbs to the right shoulder and left stomach. He noticed something strange on the right shoulder of the young lady whilst applying the medical herbs. There was a small red tattoo on the shoulder blade. Taking a closer look, Yeung Yin Siu, noticed that it was the word, “Cheung”.

    “If this young girl is from the ‘Mo Yung’ family! Why does she have the word ‘Cheung’ tattooed into her left shoulder!”, pondered Yeung Yin Siu in the darkness as more questions entered his mind.

    Another thought entered his mind, “Perhaps it’s the name of her lover! Or someone important to her!”.

    The young lady remained unconscious all this time and had continued to be breathing very faintly. He noticed that her face had turned a little pale upon losing too much blood. Seeing the urgent situation, Yeung Yin Siu decided to take out his small knife before slashing himself across the left wrist. He held it over the mouth of the young lady so that blood flow freely down it. Yeung Yin Siu sealed his pressure points in around 10 minutes time upon seeing that the complexion of the young lady’s face had returned to normal.

    Sitting besides the fire, he couldn’t help but think, “Who’s this young lady? And where have I met her before? How did she managed to copy my face?”.

    Yeung Yin Siu had a thought upon remembering that he had been unconscious after the battle with Cloud at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult. He also remembered that this very same young lady had moved like a shadow. Indicating that she also possessed the 13 Ghost Mountain Assassins lightness kung fu. He had a sudden thought, “Perhaps this girl was also at the annual general meeting of the Demon Cult and managed to copy my face when I was unconscious!”.

    He had another thought, “Perhaps she had also been amongst our group when we were ambushed by those masked men! But who is she working for?”.

    Seeing that the peach coloured brassier and the black robes had been stained in blood, Yeung Yin Siu decided to wash them by the fire. He returned before placing them besides on a small rock besides the fire to dry. He couldn’t help but be a little annoyed at this point as he remembered that he had to get to Kaifeng to save Bak Tin Kiew. He knew he still about half a day by ferry away from Kaifeng. He pondered as he sat by the fire about how he would make his way to Kaifeng whilst carrying an injured person. He knew he had to be cautious of an ambush from the group of men wearing black robes and a plain black mask. They appeared to be working for a different side to the young lady who had impersonated him.

    Not long after the peach coloured brassier and the black robes of the young lady dried by the hot fire. Yeung Yin Siu decided that he would take this opportunity to fully dress the young lady before moving on. But trying to tie the peach coloured brassier with his eyes closed was a lot harder then he had first imagined. He spent the next few moments fumbling in the darkness, at all times trying to be a gentleman that he is. He finally succeeded in around 10 minutes time, before dressing the young girl in black robes. Starring out onto the Yellow River he noticed an old boat heading in the direction of Hennan. The boat was rather old and had various holes on the side. He immediately recognised this boat.

    Grabbing a large tree branch and lighting it, he waved it back forward whilst shouting repeatedly, “Ah Kau! Over here!”.

    Moments later the old ship steered itself towards the bank. It was followed by a loud cry of, “Master! Master! Is that really you?”.

    Realising that he had guessed correctly, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “Ah Kau! It’s me ! Hurry up you lazy bum! I have someone seriously injured with me!”.

    “I’m so glad its you and that you’re alive! First I heard you were dead! Then I heard several nasty rumours about you! None of which I believe to be true!”, replied Ah Kau as he anchored the boat to the side of the bank before racing up with an enthusiastic look to greet his master.

    Ah Kau looked slightly cautious upon approaching the man by the fire. Though the voice of the man sounded like that of his master, he looked nothing like it in the face. He couldn’t help but ask, “Are you really Fisherman Ho? My master?”.

    “Yes, its me and I’m alive! I’ve just grown a beard that’s all! Now come and help me! Stop talking all that gibberish!”, shouted Yeung Yin Siu as he motioned to kick out the fire. He knew what his young apprentice had been thinking.

    “Master! Who’s that? Where’s the other little girl?”, Ah Kau couldn’t help but ask upon seeing that an 18 year old girl was now by his master’s side. He was satisfied now that it was his master who had stood before him. But he was now slightly curious as to the identity of the young lady.

    “I don’t know who this young lady is! But she’s not a friend of ours! She’s quite evil and a foe!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu has he lifted the young lady in his arms and carried her towards his boat.

    “Evil? A foe? What do you mean?”, asked Ah Kau in shock. To him the young girl looked rather pretty, innocent, and harmless. He did not understand why his master had said that the young lady was evil and a foe.

    “Eh! Ah Kau! Just because she’s pretty doesn’t mean that she’s not evil! Do you know that this is the same person who’s been impersonating me and have been creating all of the trouble in wulin for the past two months?”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst giving a smirk.

    Ah Kau did not reply and remained silent as he followed his master closely behind in the darkness. Yeung Yin Siu had now walked onto the deck of his old boat. Moments later he disappeared down the deck before resting the young lady on the old bed. Picking up several pieces of rope he tied the young lady’s arms to the head and both feet to the foot of the bed before sealing her pressure points.

    “Master! What are you doing?”, Ah Kau couldn’t help but ask upon seeing that the young lady, despite being unconscious, had been tied to the bed. He thought that was rather cruel.

    “Eh! Ah Kau! This is none of your business! She may look frail at the moment, but she’s a very capable fighter! She’s also a very slippery customer! She nearly managed to escape my grasp for the second time! If I don’t tie her up she’ll certainly escape when she regains consciousness!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu whilst casting a glance back at the bed.

    Looking down the Yellow River, he ordered, “Ah Kau! Turn this boat around! We’re heading back to Kaifeng! We must get there by morning! Understand!”.

    “Okay master. As you wish!”, replied Ah Kau returning back to the helm of the boat to steer it down the Yellow River.

    Yeung Yin Siu went down to the cabin of the boat and sat on an old chair to rest by the side of the bed. He had initially thought that the imposter had definitely been Mo Yung Bak. So he had dreamt of a number of cruel and ruthless methods to get him confessing in front of all the heroes at Shaolin to clear his name. But the fire and rage in his heart suddenly faded upon seeing that it was only an 18 year old girl. He figured that she must have had a very harsh life and unfortunate life, leading her down the dark path of committing a number of ruthless acts. He was not yet certain as to the identity of the young girl at this moment in time, but he was certain that she was linked to the ‘Mo Yung’.

    Just at that moment the young girl seem to be coming around a little. She asked in a faint voice, “Where… Where… am I?”.

    Smiling slightly, Yeung Yin Siu replied in a cheeky tone, “You’re home now! Just relax!”.

    “Home? This is my home? So this is my home!”, asked the young lady once more upon opening her eyes before gazing around the room. She noticed she was resting on an old bed in a dark and smelly cabin. Her eyes looked a little confused.

    “Of course! You’re Fisherman Ho! So this is your boat!”, continued Yeung Yin Siu in a very mocking tone.

    “My… My… My… name is Fisherman Ho? Is… Is… Is… that what they call me? So my name is Fisherman Ho!”, remarked the young lady in a low voice. She did not notice that she had been tied to the bed and that her pressure points had been sealed. She felt a great deal of pain from her right shoulder and left stomach region however. She winced as a result.

    Fixing a gaze at Yeung Yin Siu for the first time, the young lady asked, “Who… Who are you? Are you my father?”.

    At first Yeung Yin Siu had been joking and playing with the young lady. But he could notice the dazed and confused look in her eyes. He asked in a serious voice whilst leaning forward, “You seriously don’t know who I am? I’m not your father!”.

    “I… I… don’t know! Who… Who… are you?”, repeated the young girl with a blank look on her face.

    “Perhaps she’s just trying to trick me!”, Yeung Yin Siu thought to himself as he untied the ropes binding the young girl to the bed and released her pressure points. He wanted to see whether the girl would try and run away. But she did not. She remained laying down on the bed, whilst shifting her glance left and right. Occasionally she would roll her eyes to the back of her head, trying hard to search her mind for memories and images of the boat. But she could not find any.

    Struggling to sit up on the bed before noticing the rope tied to the head and the foot of the bed, she asked in a gentle but curious voice, “Why… Why… did you tie me up for?”.

    “Because you’ve been a very bad and naughty young lady!”, smirked Yeung Yin Siu as he launched forward a palm strike towards her left shoulder blade. If the young girl had only been pretending to lose her memory she would have defended the blow. But she did not. Yeung Yin Siu just managed to pull his strike back in time not to hit her.

    The young girl was still looking blankly at him before asking, “Why… Why… Why… did you try to hit me?”.

    Yeung Yin Siu gave a long sigh. He reached the conclusion that the young lady had indeed lost her memory. He said, “I wasn’t trying to hit you! You just had a dirty spot on the left corner of your robes that’s all! I was just wiping it away!”.

    “How… How… How can you tell there’s dirt on my robes? They’re are so black and dark!”, asked the young lady.

    Starring back at Yeung Yin Siu, she asked, “If… If… this is my home and you’re not my father! Who… Who… are you?”.

    Yeung Yin Sui was going to respond by saying, “I’m your husband!”, but he thought that would be far too cheeky. So he said, “I’m your cousin! You may call me Ho Yin Siu!”.

    “Ho… Ho Yin Siu!”, remarked the young lady out loud to herself.

    Pausing for a moment to search deep into her memory banks for the name, she asked, “So… So you mean that my surname is also ‘Ho’! But what’s are my first names? I’ve forgotten! Can you tell me?”.

    Remembering the tattoo on the young lady’s shoulder blades, Yeung Yin Siu shook his head before saying, “Actually your real surname is not ‘Ho’! It’s ‘Cheung’!”.

    “Cheung?”, questioned the young lady. The name did indeed sound very familiar to her.

    After a while she replied, “Yes! I remember now! My surname is indeed ‘Cheung’!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu quickly searched in his mind for a name compatible with ‘Cheung’ that would be appropriate for a young lady. He didn’t know how long it would take for her to regain her memory, so thought that he would chose a nice name for her. He suddenly thought of an idea and said, “You’ve forgotten your first names? How could you do that? It’s very easy to remember!”.

    Smiling slightly, Yeung Yin Siu continued, “Your first names are ‘Ka Bo’! Meaning precious family treasure!”.

    “Cheung Ka Bo! Cheung Ka Bo!”, repeated the young lady to herself. The name seemed very familiar to her.

    She replied, “Yes… Yes… that’s right! Cheung Ka Bo! That is my name!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu starred at the young lady who was now dazed and confused as to her identity. He felt a little sorry for her. He gave a long sigh and said, “You’re probably feeling very tired at the moment. In fact you’ve suffered a serious injury! You were attacked by pirates earlier tonight and I’ve just managed to come in time to save you! So it’s no wonder you’re a little confused!”.

    “Attacked by pirates?”, gasped the young lady. Her face turned a little pale, as some past memories seemed to have flashed before her eyes.

    “Don’t worry! Just rest for now! I’m here to protect you! I’m sure you’ll regain your memory sooner or later!”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu as he took the hands of the young girl into his own, before easing her to sleep. She closed her eyes not long after as Yeung Yin Siu sat by her side and hummed a mellow tune.

    Seeing that the young girl had finally rested Yeung Yin Siu, walked up to the helm of the boat to speak with Ah Kau. He told Ah Kau the entire story from the beginning of the annual general meeting. After he finished he specifically ordered Ah Kau to treat their guest like a long lost cousin until she regained her memory. Feeling a little uneasy, Yeung Yin Siu slept on the floor that night besides the old bed where the young lady had slept. He slept very uneasily that particular night as many thoughts flashed pass his mind. He realised that his name would not be cleared until the young lady had regained her memory. He was also curious as to whom the young lady had been working for, and why she had set out to murder so many Chiefs and Head Masters from the orthodox clans. He was also a little curious as to who the black masked men where and why they had sought to eliminate many of the orthodox clans. It was obvious that they were not on the same side, making it even more troubling.

    Yeung Yin Siu was greatly shocked the next morning upon awakening from his late. It appeared as if he had overslept and woken up at a late hour. His body was out of rhythm having been stuck at the dark cave on the outskirts of Hennan for so long. His heart raced as he shot a glance towards the old bed where the young lady had been resting the previous night.

    “Where is she?”, he thought upon noticing that the young lady was no longer resting on the old bed.

    He immediately rushed up to the deck. Glancing left and right, he could find no trace of her. Suddenly he heard the cheeky voice of Ah Kau from above. He said, “Good morning master! It’s about time that you’ve finally woken up! We’ve nearly reached Kaifeng! It’s lunchtime already! I’m starving!”.

    “Eh! Ah Kau! Don’t be cheeky! Where’s that young lady?”, urgently asked Yeung Yin Siu.

    “Aren’t you supposed to say our lovely cousin! Young little miss Cheung?”, replied Ah Kau with a beaming grin.

    Pointing with an index finger towards the back of the boat, Ah Kau continued, “Young miss Cheung is resting at the back!”.

    Yeung Yin Siu immediately went towards the back of the boat behind the cabin. It was out of view. Indeed the young lady who he had just named, Cheung Ka Bo, was sitting at the back with her two feet dangling in the water. She clutched tightly onto a black robe to keep herself warm. Though she appeared to be in a little bit of pain, and slightly tired, her face was glowing underneath the sunlight. She appeared to be at peace.

    Noticing that someone had stood over her, Cheung Ka Bo said as she looked at the sky, “Good morning cousin! It’s a nice day isn’t it? I’m never seen anything like this! Even if I have I wouldn’t be able to remember!”.

    “Good morning cousin!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu fixing a gaze at the sun in the sky.

    After a while he continued, “It’s just the sun! It comes out everyday! Days like these are plenty! There’s nothing special about them!”.

    “Really! I don’t think I’ve ever seen the sun before! I may have! I’m not certain!”, replied Cheung Ka Bo whilst searching deep into her mind.

    “But this is the most beautiful thing I’ve seen! This is a moment to be cherished! If there are many days like this, then we need to cherish each and everyone of them!”, continued Cheung Ka Bo as she turned around to glance at Yeung Yin Siu. Her smile glowing in the light. It is indeed true, as we often take the little things for granted.

    “You should go back down to the cabin to rest! Your injuries haven’t recovered!”, replied Yeung Yin Siu. His voice carried with it a little bit of concern.

    “Cousin Ho, it’s okay! I’ll rest a little longer here! But I’m starving! Is there anything to eat?”, asked Cheung Ka Bo as she fixed her gaze at the sun in the sky, and watched the little fish swimming in the water.

    That day Yeung Yin Siu cooked up a delicious dish of fried fish and vegetables. The young lady called Cheung Ka Bo just kept praising his abilities saying she had never tasted anything so delicious. After a while she felt tired and rested peacefully on the old bed down at the cabin. They arrived at the port of Kaifeng around 3.00pm in the afternoon. In the distance they could see a puff of black smoke rising from the city centre. Yeung Yin Siu’s natural instincts told him to be cautious. He sensed that something was not right. He was a day early for the appointment with Fa Fei Sit at the ‘Dragon Inn’. He had deliberately done this so he could collect his sword from Blacksmith Chan before confronting Fa Fei Sit. He had also wanted to examine the surroundings. Suddenly a thought ran through his mind upon closely observing the smoke rising from the city, “Dam! Something must have happened to Blacksmith Chan!”.

    Wasting no time he immediately utilise his lightness kung fu to race towards the city centre. He could hear Ah Kau shouting frantically from behind, “What about your cousin, Cheung Ka Bo? What should we do with her?”.

    Shouting back as he ran, Yeung Yin Siu replied, “Let her rest on the boat! Make sure you take good care of her! I won’t be gone for long! I will return in the evening, at the latest! Remember business as usual!”.

    “Okay!”, Ah Kau could be heard shouting in the distance.

    Yeung Yin Siu arrived in the main city centre in around 15 minutes time. He had indeed guessed correctly. The old shopfront that once bore the sign, ‘Blacksmith Chan’s Workshop’ had been burnt to the ground. The old wooden sign had been broken and was now laying on the ground. Blacksmith Chan was no where to be seen. A large crowd had gathered at the front of the shop. They were curious as to what happened. As usual many of them were murmuring to themselves trying to figure out what happened.

    He suddenly had a thought, “Where’s Black Smith Chan? Whys he not here?”, as he turned left and right to observe the surroundings. Suddenly felt someone gently tapping him on his right shoulder. Turning around he could not see anyone. He was slightly puzzled by this event. Upon turning to the right, he noticed that someone had drawn an arrow on the wall. The arrow was pointing towards a small back street to the left. Wasting no time, Yeung Yin Siu, ran down the narrow path before noticing an arrow, which pointed him to another small narrow path towards his right. He followed the signs like this for another 10 minutes before arriving at the front of an old unused temple. There was a large clay statute of Buddha at the end of the temple. He went up and closely examined it. He suddenly noticed a large ‘X’ had been carved at his belly button.

    “Could this be where Blacksmith Chan has hidden my Black Dragon Sword?”, remarked Yeung Yin Siu out loud before channelling his inner energy and smashing the large clay statute of Buddha into little bits and pieces. What he found greatly amazed him.

    End of Chapter 14.
    "Seems, madam! Nay it is, I know not seems!" - Hamlet, William Shakespeare

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