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Thread: The Sword And The Exquisiteness by GU LONG

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    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    Arrow The Sword And The Exquisiteness by GU LONG

    Chapter 1 A Sudden Calamity

    In a dark shady courtyard, there is an old man in a green robe standing under an old tree. His hair, eyebrows and beard are coloured greenish by the light. He looks very tranquil and carefree, his hands are folded behind his back as he watches the young man, who sits in front of him, writing.

    The young man is kneeling in front of a small table, in his hand he is holding a brush. It is as thick as a the arm of a baby in diametre and it is about 7 metres long.

    The young man is writing the final characters on his essay.
    The young man puts down his brush and raises his head and says:"All the heroes in the realm wouldn't miss out on The Gathering at Lake Huang. Aren't you going, father?"
    The old man smiles and says:"You ask me this question after copying the scriptures of Nanhua (a Taoist codex written by the Taoist philosopher Chuang Tzu 369-286 B.C.)it seems that your cultivation has improved. However should you be asking this question altogether? After all this time haven't you been able to pass beyond the word "hero?"
    The young man looks up and ponders for awhile and replies:"Yes, you're right."
    A gentle breeze was blowing, the leaves rustled, suddenly a black figure came down from the tree tops. In an instant he ascended and came down without any noise.
    The man is rather short and skinny man in a black robe. The robe is very tight revealing his trained muscles and every part of his body is maintaining a sharp vigilance.
    The old and young man are not startled and just look at him casually, it seems like to them that this man was standing there the entire time.
    The man lauged and said:"The Old Man of Mount Yue, Yu Fanghe has indeed great self- control. It's even more surprising that young master Yu has the same self-control. I, Hei Gezi (Black Pigeon) am deeply impressed."
    Yu FangHe smiled:"Oh, you're Master Hei one of the 7 Heroes whose art of leviatation is famous throughout the realm."
    Hei Gezi replied:"Old master should know that I am the weakest and most useless one of the "Seven Birds of Wulin". I'm unworthy of becoming a robber or even an armed guard. I just rely on my fast legs and my tight mouth to deliver messages."
    Yu Fanghe happily said:" Brother Hei does not take money that is not honestly earned and that earns my deep respects. But I'm wondering which old friend has asked you to deliver a letter."
    Hei Gezi replied:"If that person does not want to reveal his identity I'm obliged to keep his/her identity a secret. That is my professional code, I also know that you wouldn't force me to reveal his/her identity. But I know this letter concerns a important secret of old master Yu." After saying this he takes out a letter and gives it to Yu.
    Yu Fanghe was hesitating for a minute and returned the letter to Hei Gezi and said:"Would you mind opening this letter and loudly read out the contents?"
    Hei Gezi said:"But this letter concerns a secret of you...."
    Yu Fanghe smiles:"Because of that, I would like you to read it because I have no secrets. And everything in this letter I am not afraid to let anyone know."
    Hei Gezi was deeply impressed and smiled:"No secrets at all! Except for you who can say he has no secrets."
    Hei Gezi opened the letter and found the pages in it. The pages are stuck together and Hei Gezi wetted his fingers with saliva and separated the pages.
    He started to read the letter out loud:"Dear brother......"
    Suddenly he fell down with convulsions, Yu Fanghe was startled and quickly rushed over to help. After feeling his pulse he knew that Hei Gezi was soon to die and quickly asked:"Who gave you this letter?" Who?"
    Hei Gezi opened his mouth and wanted to say something but couldn't produce a syllable.
    Yu saw the colour of Hei's face turn to green from white to from white to red and from red to black. In a matter of seconds the colour of Hei's face shifted 4 times and the flesh of his face disappeared mysteriously leaving behind a black skeleton.
    The young man was feeling very frightened by this and exclaimed:"Goodnes! What a deadly poison!"
    Out of the robe of Hei Gezi rolled out an ingot of gold, that was the price of the letter also the price of his life.

    Yu Fanghe looked at that ingot of gold for some time and picked up the letter.
    The young man was startled and said:"What are you going to do, father?"
    Yu Fanghe returned to his calm self and said:" This man died because of me, furthermore whoever tried to ambush me will try again and who knows who will be the next innocent victim. It is best that I should die, instead staying alive feeling remosefull of the deaths that are to follow."

    The young man said:"But...but, father who wants to harm you? You have never had any grudges with anyone in your life. Who would...."
    Suddenly they heard a great explosion, the ingot of gold exploded the force of the explosion was so loud that all the leaves of the tree fell down.
    It seemed like Yu Fangfe never moved but in fact during the explosion he retreated for about 11 metres away and returned to the same position after the explosion.
    His normal very tranquil eyes were now filled with anger and he made a fist and said:"What a vicious person! This person does not only want to kill me but also wants to kill the messenger. He also calculated that the ingot would explode after delivering the letter."
    The young man was also angry and said:"Who can this person be? Not only does he have an evil heart but also a pair of crafty hands. If this person is not stopped,...."
    Yu Fanghe interupted him with a sigh:"Actually we cannot blame this person. If this person really hates me that much and really wants to kill me with that much passion, I must have done something to this person."
    The young man had tears in his eyes and said:"Father, you cannot have done anything wrong in your life! The way you treat others, how can people still want to harm you? Is there no more justice in the realm."
    Yu Fanghe said:"Peiyu, don't be upset. And don't say there isn't any justice in the world. Every person is bound to make a few mistakes in his life, even I. But at this moment I cannot remember what I did wrong.

    At this moment they could hear people from far away shouting:"Where is Yu Fanghe?......
    Where is Yu Fanghe?......"

    To be continued...

    <font size="1">[ April 15, 2003: Message edited by: Athena ]</font>
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

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    Cool! So glad you enjoyed this book enough to translate it. It’s definitely one of my(and seemingly also TigerWong's) favorites. Although your title translation left me wondering for quite a while. But it sounds nice. <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

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    Erm...
    what's the name of the book in chinese? I haven't read it yet, but it seems intriguing.

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    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    The novel is called: "Ming Jian Feng Liu"
    I had a terrible time thinking of a suitable title, this was the best I could come up with.
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

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    Senior Member Floo..'s Avatar
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    Hey, Athena!! Glad that you're back!!
    How's vacation?
    And... thx for translating this novel ^_^
    back w/ a vengeance ^_^

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    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><table border="0" width="80%" bgcolor="#dcdcdc" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1"><tr><td width="100%"><table border="0" width="100%" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="10" bgcolor="#DCDCDC"><tr><td width="100%" bgcolor="#eeeeee"><font size="1">Originally posted by Athena:
    <STRONG>I had a terrible time thinking of a suitable title, this was the best I could come up with.</STRONG></font></td></tr></table></td></tr></table></BLOCKQUOTE>

    The Famous Playboy Sword? <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0"> <IMG SRC="smilies/tongue.gif" border="0">

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    Senior Member TigerWong's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Alright, Athena! One of my favorite Gu Long novels! Good luck translating it, cause it's pretty long.. <IMG SRC="smilies/wink.gif" border="0">

  8. #8
    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    PeiYu doesn't strike me as a playboy, in fact I find him a true gentleman. So using the word playboy in the title will lead to some misconceptions. Also "Feng Liu" also can distinguished or exquisite so hence the title.
    Also this is not a word to word translation, that would take too much of my time. (The last time I did that, it took me weeks before I could finish translating just 2 chapters).
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

  9. #9
    Senior Member TigerWong's Avatar
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    Yeah, I was kinda thinking to myself that the events seem to be going by fairly quickly <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

    Anyway, it's great that you're doing this. I think the majority of this story is pretty suspenseful and interesting. Plus, a lot of eccentric characters. And readers will be exposed to a GL hero that is not invincible (at least not right away) or has all the answers.

    <font size="1">[ March 18, 2003: Message edited by: TigerWong ]</font>

  10. #10
    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    Arrow

    Continuation.....

    The shouting, cursing become louder and louder, there were voices of shock and the noise of breaking down of doors. It seems that the servants of the Yu residence couldn't stop these trespassers.
    The young man Yu Peiyu was surprised and said:""Who would dare to invade our home?"
    Yu Fanghe gently said:"We shouldn't stop visitors from entering, furthermore when they have already entered our home why should you bother going outside to greet them..."Yu Fanghe turned around and smiled:"Do come in."
    There were 5 smartly dressed men standing in the courtyard now. They all looked very fierce and ready to kill, however when they saw that father and son Yu were still very much tranquil they were rather shocked. The first man holding a large broad sabre laughed arrogantly:"Yu Fanghe, you despicable fiend! I finally found you!"
    During his arrogant laughter he raised his sabre and hacked at Yu Fanghe, the power of the sabre forced the leaves down but Yu Fanghe just stood there not moving seeminly he just wanted to be hacked.
    Yu Peiyu didn't even raise his head his finger just moved and everyone heard "Ping" and the man couldn't hold on to his sabre.
    One part of his body felt numb and his ears were still humming, the colour of his face changed and stared at this young man. He didn't dare to attack but didn't retreat either.
    Yu Fanghe called out:"Peiyu, do not harm them."
    Indeed Yu Peiyu now stood still and didn't advance. The man laughed arrogantly again and said:"Of course, Yu Fanghe wants to keep his repuatation as a benevolent man, he will never harm anyone. But I want to kill you old fiend, and if you wound me just a bit you're a hypocrite!"
    This man was so incredibly unreasonable and said this in vigorous way, Yu Fanghe was not impressed and smiled:"In that case all of you want to take my life."
    The man laughed and said:"You're absolutely right!"
    And grabbed his sabre again and called out to the other 4 men:"Brothers, attack!"
    A nine ringed sabre, a mourning sword, tiger-headed hook, a judge's brush, a chain spear, 5 weapons were aimed at Yu Fanghe.
    At this point someone laughed:"With your abilities you can never harm old master Yu!"
    A shadow passed by and dashed towards the 5 weapons, first the sabre flew away and was stuck in a tree, the sword was broken into 2 halves. Judge's brush flew up too, the hook ripped open the abdomen of the sword user and the chained spear was wrapped round the neck of the hook user.
    The person was extremely fast and his techniques were like lightning even father and son Yu were impressed.
    Now they saw that this person was a handsome young man in a purple robe, his eyes were bright and shining but he looked emotionless. He knelt down and said:"On my way here I overheard these men plotting something against old master Yu. So I decided to follow them and saw that old master Yu was still very polite to your own agressors and these ruffians were too rude for words. In my anger I might have used too much force, so please forgive me for using force on your premises."
    He helped out but did not claim credit but asked to be forgiven.
    Yu Fanghe sighed deeply:"No matter what you did it because of me. How can I blame you? Don't ever say things like forgive and so. These 5 men... (*sigh)... I don't know what I've done to them but it has lead to their deaths here."
    After awhile he smiled again and turned to this young man and held his hands wanting him to stand up:"You're not only young but also very handsome if you are the son of an old friend that would be most fortunate."
    The young man wouldn't get up and said:"Although you don't recognize me, but my life was saved by old master Yu. Old master Yu, you have done numerous benevolent deeds in your life how can you remember a small child that you once saved."
    Yu Fanghe held his hands and said:"Now that child has grown up and even saved my life. It seems...."
    Yu Fanghe suddenly stretched his arms and flung that young man away and stepped back three paces. His body was shaking and said in a crackling voice:"Who... who are you?"

    The young man landed elegantly on the ground and laughed:"Old man Yu, your palms have contracted my deadly "Instant Rutheless Depraving Needle". Not even an immortal can save you now and you'll never know who I am...
    Yu Peiyu is standing next to his father already, and saw that the hands of his father are swolled twice the normal size and were entirely black now. His father looked dead pale and was shaking and couldn't speak anymore.
    Yu Peiyu was devastated and shouted:"What grudges do we have? Why do you use such vicious tricks against us!"
    The young man laughed, but remained emotionless:"I have no grudge with you nor your father. I just want your lives."
    Yu Peiyu looked at the bodies of the 5 dead men and hatefully gritted his teeth:"This is also one of your traps."
    The young man replied:"Yes, it is. In order to take your lives not only did we have to sacrifice these 6 men...."
    Suddenly he whistled and 20 odd men leapt from the walls holding swords and sabres. Juding by the steps they were all experts but all their faces were veiled with a purple cloth. They were afraid that people might recognize them.
    The young man laughed arrogantly:"Yu, surrender now resistance is useless. We were afraid of old Yu's invincible "Golden Silk Palms" but now he is useless. What do you hope to accomplish."

    To be continued.....

    <font size="1">[ April 11, 2003: Message edited by: Athena ]</font>
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

  11. #11
    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    To Floo..: I will send you a private message soon and tell you everything. Well, almost everything. <IMG SRC="smilies/wink.gif" border="0"> <IMG SRC="smilies/wink.gif" border="0">
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

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    I've this strange inertia to chinese books. I'd never have picked up ming2 jian4 feng1 liu2 to read normally. But now that I've read the 1st chapter, it gives me the momentum to read the entire thing in chinese. And in the expence of my sleep, I finished it last night.

    And I understand why Meh and TigerWing like this story. It's one of GL's better written stories. There's character development for the main character, he isn't invicible right from the start (unlike LXF, whom I liked, but found rather unbelievable)

    Athena, thanks for starting the translation, if not I'd never have read this particular novel.

    By the way, I've noticed that for every GL novel that I've read, there's always at least 1 woman that enjoys stripping and loves to trap men using her body. And brothels are always featured. Are there any acceptions? That's one of GL's writing features that I don't like. Maybe it's because I'm female. <IMG SRC="smilies/angrystick.gif" border="0">

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    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><table border="0" width="80%" bgcolor="#dcdcdc" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1"><tr><td width="100%"><table border="0" width="100%" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="10" bgcolor="#DCDCDC"><tr><td width="100%" bgcolor="#eeeeee"><font size="1">Originally posted by Athena:
    <STRONG>PeiYu doesn't strike me as a playboy, in fact I find him a true gentleman. So using the word playboy in the title will lead to some misconceptions. Also "Feng Liu" also can distinguished or exquisite so hence the title.
    Also this is not a word to word translation, that would take too much of my time. (The last time I did that, it took me weeks before I could finish translating just 2 chapters).</STRONG></font></td></tr></table></td></tr></table></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Oh, you're too serious. <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0"> I just said it sort of as a joke.

    I wouldn't have used that translation either if I had been translating, for the same reason. You know, I never did realize that the word 'Feng Liu' can also mean exquisite or distinguished. That would make a lot more sense. I kept wondering when the hell Yu PeiYu was going to start flirting when reading the book. <IMG SRC="smilies/tongue.gif" border="0">

    See, this is the sort of stuff that makes me wish I lived in China. It's so hard to go beyond just the most obvious translation for me. <IMG SRC="smilies/angrystick.gif" border="0">

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    Senior Member TigerWong's Avatar
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    Metwin1: I'm glad you enjoyed it too (although the ending could have been better). I don't know how you guys do it...reading it all in one night! What happened to the "in-depth" Midnight Orchid discussion you started? <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

    Meh: Yu PeiYu does have a lot of girls fall for him though (but he's too devoted...). I also have a very hard time coming up with a decent translation for this title.

    <font size="1">[ March 18, 2003: Message edited by: TigerWong ]</font>

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    YPY had some girls, but it was more like a ZWJ-type thing. He certainly didn't try to woo any of them(at least from what I remember).

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><table border="0" width="80%" bgcolor="#dcdcdc" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1"><tr><td width="100%"><table border="0" width="100%" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="10" bgcolor="#DCDCDC"><tr><td width="100%" bgcolor="#eeeeee"><font size="1">I don't know how you guys do it...reading it all in one night! </font></td></tr></table></td></tr></table></BLOCKQUOTE>

    You mean you can't do this sort of stuff? Maybe you're just too old. <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">

    I finished this book in two sittings. GL books are pretty quick reading.

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    Midnight orchid? That one just fizzled out... :P Besides, I don't really like the story.

    My problem is that I have a one-tracked mind. Stories should follow a linear fashion. JY's stuff is good in that sense. THe storyline proceeds logically, and there's character development. Usually.

    GL is easier to read, and uses simpler chinese characters. But he goes in circles, and repeats the same scene over and over, with different interpretations depending on the points of view. They get me confused, I never know which senario I read is the one the actually happened. His characters like to preach certain strange ideology which is intersting when read for the 1st time. However, the lines seem to repeat themselves in differnt novels.

    Right now, when I read GL's stuff, I am afraid to assume who the good and bad guys are cos I know I'll be 'cheated'. But GL's interesting, and a refreshing change to JY.

    What do you guys recommend that I read next? I've read the LXF series, the CLX series, Jue Dai Shuang Jiao, and of course this one. I think I've read XSYL as well.

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    Senior Member TigerWong's Avatar
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    Meh: No he didn't try to woo anyone ('sides, one was too young anyway). He was too devoted to his fiancee.

    And yes, I'm afraid I am too old <IMG SRC="smilies/frown.gif" border="0">. I don't remember the last time I read any book in 2 sittings, much less one...

    Metwin1: But you're the one who wanted to discuss it! <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0"> Ah, well...I didn't enjoy the story either.

    I think theres a thread on here about GL recommendations not too long ago.

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    TigerWong: yep, i was the one who wanted to discuss it. Actually, I just wanted to know who Mr orchid is, that's all. <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

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    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    Arrow

    Yu Peiyu looked around and saw that these 20 odd men were quite strong. His heart was filled with grief, pain, anger and also shock.
    Any other person would have gone mad or would have attacked his agressors without any reason anymore. But not him he was different from anyone else. He carried his father on his back and picked up that long brush.
    The attackers were advancing forward, they were all a bit surprised by the tranquility shown by Yu Peiyu.
    At this point the swords and sabres hacked towards Yu, his entire surroundings were encircled by metalic light. A gush of wind horizontally swept out, the long iron brush made contact with the swords and sabres. Some were broken, bended or flung aside, the men were pushed back and felt a numbness in their shoulders and couldn't raise their arms for awhile.
    No one believed that this handsome, gentle young man had such tremendous strength.
    Now another group advanced forward but they did not dare to make contact with the brush.
    More than 20 men surrrounded Yu Peiyu, none of them could penetrate the powerful wind created by the brush, although the force of the brush is very powerful but it was also very stressful after 20 stances Yu Peiyu began to sweat.
    The purple robed young man laughed:"Good, tire him out! The rats are trapped and have no place to hide."
    Although Yu Peiyu was fighting against those 20 men his eyes were focused on that young vicious man and his hands with the poisonous needles.

    Peiyu heard his father's breathing become weaker and weaker, and the enemies are closing in now. He was heart-broken and tired and yelled out:"Enough!"
    He also knew if he got away now it will be very difficult to find out who the mastermind is behind this entire plot.
    He flung the long brush towards the chest of one the men, this man was terrified and quickly rolled on the ground to avoid being hit. The brush was stuck in the ground and Yu Peiyu used to catapult him and his father over their attackers.
    The vicious young man called out:"Chase them, quickly!"
    By the time they went outside they couldn't find a trace of them, the young man ordered them to spread and search. However in fact Peiyu hid under a bridge nearby, because he was carrying his father on his back and he exhausted he knew he couldn't outrun them anymore.
    One man said:"Should we check under the bridge to....."
    The young man angrily said:"Yu is not an idiot, do you think he will stay under the bridge till we find him."

    Peiyu stayed hidden for some time and after he felt that the attackers were gone he quickly carried his father back to their house. He put his father on the bed and quickly took out some medicine out of the cupboard. He gave his father some pills, these pills were made by Yu Fanghe and saved many lifes how ironic that these pills cannot save his own.
    At this time Yu Peiyu burst out in tears, Yu Fanghe's face was black and he opened his mouth and said weakly:"Am I wrong? What...what have I done wrong?"
    Yu Peiyu cried out:"Father, you have done nothing wrong in your life!"
    Yu Fanghe wanted to smile but the muscles in his face have hardened and he was unable to smile again. With extreme difficulty he uttered his last words:"I did nothing wrong, you must remember my teachings. Always be tolerant and forgiving.... tolerant...and forgiving..."
    His voice slowly died out.

    Peiyu knelt down and cried for hours on end, the sun had already set.
    It was now dark and quiet, but after awhile there were footsteps and judging by the sound this person was walking towards the Yu residence.
    Finally, the door was pushed open and this person entered with extreme caution, at this time Yu Peiyu stood up.
    The person was startled and called out:"Who are you?"

    <font size="1">[ April 14, 2003: Message edited by: Athena ]</font>
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

  20. #20
    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    Arrow

    It should have been Yu Peiyu that should have asked that question, judging by her shadown and figure this intruder was a young, gracious woman.
    The girl started shouting angrily:"You fiend, how dare you commit such crime and stay here!"
    She drew her sword and stabbed 7 times, her swordsmanship was swift and vicious Peiyu outmanoeuvred her 7 deadly stances and said:"The Flowered Chestnut Swordsmanship?"
    The girl scoffed:"You recognize the sword skills of the Lin family. You..."
    Yu Peiyu sighed and said:"I am Yu Peiyu."
    The girl was stunned and dropped her sword and said in a trembling voice:"Brother Yu, is uncle...."
    She looked at the bed and suddenly she knelt down and started crying:"I can't believe it... it is impossible..."
    Yu Peiyu stared at her, she cried ever so sad and suddenly she raised her head and said:"I've cried enough, tell me what happened."
    Yu Peiyu lighted a lamp and saw that the girl wore mourning clothes and was shocked and asked:"Is uncle Lim....?"
    "My father was murdered 6 days ago."
    Yu Peiyu asked:"Do you know who was the killer?"
    The girl said:"I don't know." The light shone on her pretty face, although she looked somewhat sickly her face was still full of character.
    She continued:"You must think it is strange that I don't know who killed my father. That particular day I went out by the time I got back my father was dead and nobody else was around anymore."

    <font size="1">[ April 11, 2003: Message edited by: Athena ]</font>
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

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