The Demi Gods and Semi Devils

Book 1: Adventures of Youth

Chapter 4: High Cliffs and Faraway Persons

Original novel written by Jin Yong (Louis Cha)

Fan translation by Moinllieon (send email)

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After several kilometers, Black Rose found another mountain path. But the mountain path gradually got steeper, causing Black Rose's gallop to get even slower and allowing the cursing and shouting behind them begin to get closer and closer.

"Black Rose, so sorry to make you work so hard today." Duan Yu shouted. "But could you please run just a little faster?" After several more kilometers, he could actually see the reflections off the blades of sabres and swords behind them.

"Faster, faster!" Mu WanQing urged Black Rose continuously and Black Rose's speed picked up. Suddenly, a deep, bottomless gorge dozens of meters wide appeared in front of them. Black Rose let out a long neigh and took several steps back.

Seeing that there's no where left to go, Mu WanQing asked: "I'm going to try and jump this gorge. Do you want to stay here or chance it with me?"

"If there's one less person on the horse, then it would be easier for Black Rose to jump this." Duan Yu thought. So he replied: "Why don't miss go first and then pull me over?"

"Not enough time for that!" Mu WanQing replied as the pursuers closed in. Backing up the horse several more steps, she gently patted on its belly a couple of times and shouted: "Shh! Jump it!"

Black Rose shot forth towards the edge of the gorge. Just inches from the end of the path, she jumped. Duan Yu felt as if he was flying through the air, only carried by the clouds; but his heart beat so fast that it felt as if it was about to jump out of his mouth.

Because of being urged by her master, Black Rose had jumped with all her might and her front hooves landed on the other side. But because the distance between the sides was just too wide and, after running all night and being injured, she was tired, her hindlegs did not reach the other side and she began to fall.

With lightning quick reactions, Mu WanQing immediately grabbed Duan Yu and jumped up off the saddle. Duan Yu landed first and Mu WanQing came crashing down right after, landing neatly into his arms. Fearing that she might be hurt, Duan Yu held onto her as tight as he could. Black Rose's desperate scream could be heard as she fell further down into the gorge.

Overwhelmed with despair, Mu WanQing struggled out of Duan Yu's embrace and ran to the edge of the cliff. But all that could be seen were clouds and fog, not a trace or sign of Black Rose anywhere. She suddenly felt light headed as the whole world began to spin around her. Her legs gave out from under her as she collapsed onto the ground.

Shocked and afraid that she might fall or roll over the edge, Duan Yu scrambled over as fast as he could. Her eyes were close tight, she had obviously fainted from what just happened. He was at a lost about what to do next when he suddenly heard someone shouting.

"Shoot! Shoot! Kill the 2 of them!"

Duan Yu looked up and saw that 7 or 8 men already arrived at the other side of the gorge. So he immediately picked Mu WanQing up and ran in the other direction. "Soow!" An arrow suddenly whistled by, grazing his ear.

He stumbled around for several more steps before he crouched down to make himself smaller and continued to ran away. "Soow!" Another arrow flew right over his head, right where it would have been normally. He suddenly caught the sight of a huge rock to his left, so he dove behind it. And just in time it appeared, as an endless cacophony of projectiles hitting the rock arose as soon as he jumped behind the rock. Duan Yu stayed as still as he could, not daring to move a muscle.

"Smash!" A huge rock suddenly sailed over the rock and landed just beside him. The person who tossed the rock must have been incredibly strong as to be able to toss such a huge piece of stone more than 30 meters. Fortunately for Duan Yu, the distance made it almost impossible to aim the throw.

Figuring that this place wasn't safe after all, Duan Yu immediately picked Mu WanQing up again. In one breath, he ran as fast as he could for about another 40 meters or so. Only then did he feel safe from all the projectiles and stop.

He caught his breath and gently laid Mu WanQing down onto the grass. He then jumped behind another rock and stuck his head out to take a peek at the other side of the gorge.

By now the other side was filled with people as every one of them was pointing one way or another as if they were planning something. Once in a while Duan Yu would hear a sentence or 2 of what they said, filled with cursing and rude comments, that was carried over by the wind.

"If they went around the mountain and came up from the other side, then the 2 of us would be completely defenseless." Duan Yu thought to himself.

So he walked over to the other end of the mountain top, looked down, and scared himself so much that he almost lost his balance. Several hundred meters below the edge of the cliff a huge, jade colored river was roaring by. Turned out they had arrived at the shores of LanCang River. The rapids were furious, no way to get up from this side. But if those guys get to the bottom of the gorge, they could climb up this side and the 2 of them would still be killed. He took a deep breath and sighed, figuring that whatever happens happens and that he'll worry about what to do when the time comes. Suddenly, something he said just a little bit before popped back into his head: "There's really not much to be gained from dying half a day earlier or later."

He returned to Mu WanQing's side. Noticing that she still haven't come to, he was trying hard to figure out how to wake her up when he noticed that there was an iron spike sticking out from the back of her left shoulder and the blood from the wound covered most of her shirt. He was busy running for his life earlier and sitting in front of her on the horse before that, so he had no idea that she had suffered such a horrendous wound.

"Is she dead?" was the first thought that popped into his head. So he immediately moved her veil aside and put his finger underneath her nose to check her breathing. He was greatly relieved when he felt a faint breath.

"Got to pull that spike out and stop the bleeding." He decided. So he grabbed the spike, bit down hard, and pulled. The spike came out rather easily. But he did not know what to expect and had his entire face covered by a spray of blood.

Mu WanQing screamed in pain as it woke her up, but she then immediately fainted again.

Duan Yu pushed down on her wound as much as he could, trying to stop the bleeding. But the blood was almost squirting out and it looked hopeless. At his wit's end, he pulled a handful of grass from the ground, stuffed them into his mouth, chewed them into a pulp, and smeared it over her wound. But the blood just washed the pulp off the wound.

"When she was wounded by those hooks," he suddenly remembered, "she used some herbs or medicine from her shirt and the bleeding stopped soon after."

He gently reached into her shirt and took out the objects one by one. There was one comb made out of yellow poplar, a small mirror, 2 pink handkerchiefs, 3 small wooden boxes, and one porcelain flask. He was taken aback when he saw these female items. Only now did he realize that this was a girl in front of him and realized how inappropriate it was for him to reach into her shirt and feel around. Also, it was very difficult to link these female items with this merciless killer.

He had seen Mu WanQing pour some green powder out of the porcelain flask to SiKong Xuan as the Kid Elder's magical medicine but did not know whether or not it could stop bleeding. So he popped open one of the boxes and was immediately engulfed by a faint fragrance. The box was filled with blush. The second box was half filled with a white powder and the third box had in it a yellow powder. He put both of them up to his nose and sniffed them. The white powder was odorless but the yellow powder was so spicy that it made him sneeze from just one sniff.

"This is either the blood clotter or a deadly poison." He thought to himself. "Better be on the cautious side, it would be terrible if I misused it." So he poked Mu WanQing for a while until she slowly cracked open her eyes.

Ecstatic, he asked: "Miss Mu, which of these medicines stops bleeding?"

"The red one." She replied before closing her eyes again.

"The red one?" Duan Yu asked to make sure, but she did not reply. Duan Yu was quite puzzled, that red one was clearly blush, how could it stop bleeding? But since she said so, then might as well try it out; it's can't be any worse than applying poison onto the wound.

So he tore off a bit of the cloth around the wound, scooped up a bit of the blush with his finger and applied it onto the wound. When his fingers touched the wound, Mu WanQing, even though she's half-conscious, twitched from the pain.

"It's ok, it's ok." Duan Yu comforted. "Let's stop the bleeding first."

Strangely, the blush turned out to be incredibly effective. Soon, the bleeding significantly slowed down and stopped. After a while, a yellowish liquid oozed out from the wound.

"Making blood clotters like blush," Duan Yu thought out loud to himself, "girls these days are really something."

Only now did he finally calm down from all that work and he noticed that the other side of the gorge had quieted down.

"Are they really going to come up from the bottom of the gorge?" He wondered. Crawling to the edge of the cliff, he looked down and his heart began beating fast again. As he expected, he saw about a dozen or so men slowly climbing down the cliff facing him towards the bottom of the gorge. Even though the gorge is deep, there's still a bottom, and as soon as they reach it they could climb up this side. From the looks of it, they would arrive in about 5 or 6 hours.

Although the outlook was grim, he couldn't just give in and wait here to die. Looking around again, he realized that they were on the very top of a peak with sheer cliffs on 3 sides and a river on the other. He sighed and dragged Mu WanQing underneath a rock that was jutting out of the ground so she wouldn't catch anything from the cold mountain winds. After that, he started to gather rocks and put them by the very edge of the cliff. Luckily, there were all kinds of rocks all over the place and he was able to quickly gather quite an impressive mound. Satisfied with his own work, he sat down at Mu WanQing's side to rest himself.

As soon as he sat down he felt the sand on the ground rumbling, rather painfully, against his bare skin. His thoughts began to wander as he compared his situation with a particular line of teaching he had read in the Book of Changes. Somehow his thoughts led him to compare himself to a large goat.

{Note: Here Duan Yu's specific thoughts were filled with old Chinese terms that uses characters that aren't even in dictionaries anymore. I'm sorry I could not translate his thoughts word for word, but the gist of it was that he somehow compared himself to a large goat.}

Having not slept at all last night, he was as tired as he could ever remember being. After analyzing a couple more phrases from the Book of Changes, he was just about to fall asleep. However, knowing that enemies were approaching, he did not dare to let himself sleep. As wave after wave of the fragrance from Mu WanQing hit him, he suddenly realized that when he put his fingers underneath her nose to make sure that she was alive he had actually removed her veil and saw her face. But he was too occupied with her well-being at the time to pay attention to what she looked like. And now for no good reason he couldn't bring himself to remove the veil to take another look. Thinking back some more, he seemed to remember that her skin was white and smooth, at least nothing like her claim of having a pot-covered face.

At this time Mu WanQing was still passed out, if he quietly removed her veil again there was no way she would know. He wanted to, but did not dare to. His mind was racing: "I'm living and dying with her right here, most probably dying actually. If I don't even know what she looked like before I die, then won't my death be a little too much in vain?"

But deep down he was also afraid that she might actually turn out to really have a pot-covered face: "If she wasn't just incredibly ugly, why would she always have a veil on and not let anyone else see her real face? This particular miss's actions are so rough and rash, she probably has no relation whatsoever with the words 'beautiful and elegant'."

He just could not make up his mind. In trying to make up his mind, he just got sleepier and sleepier until he actually fell asleep.

After what seemed like forever, a crackling sound suddenly woke him up. Running to the edge of the cliff, he was able to see 5 or 6 men climbing up the cliff. Luckily, the cliff was so steep that their progress slowed to almost a halt. Duan Yu's mind was screaming to himself: "Wow that was close! Too close!"

He picked up a rock and threw it over the edge. "Stop! Or else I'm going to let you guys have it!" He shouted.

From his position above them, he could easily hit them with rocks; and because the climbers were still about 100 meters away from him, they could not hit him with their projectiles. When they heard him, they stopped, but only for a second before they resumed climbing, only this time they were zig-zagging and temporarily hiding behind certain rocks. In a flurry, Duan Yu tossed 5 or 6 rocks over the edge in a row. Two screams went up as 2 men were hit and fell to their deaths. Only then did the rest of the climbers realize the predicament they were in and began to scramble down the cliff. One of them was too hasty in his retreat, lost his footing, and also fell to his death.

Duan Yu had studied Buddhism with highly respected monks ever since he was little. He even refused to learn kungfu. So this was the first time he had taken a life, and it scared his face white. He had intended to just scare those climbers away, but ended up killing 2 men and indirectly causing the death of another. Even though he knew that if he didn't do what he did and the climbers made it to the top, both Mu WanQing and him would have been dead, he still could not help feeling terrible.

He just stood there, completely still from the shock, for a long while before he returned to where Mu WanQing was. She had sat up and was leaning up against the rock. Surprised and ecstatic, Duan Yu said: "Miss Mu, you... you are ok now!"

Mu WanQing did not reply. She just stared at him from behind the mask, there was viciousness in that stare.

"You just sit there and rest for a bit, I'm going to get some water for you." Duan Yu said in a soft voice.

"Were people trying to climb up to here?" She asked.

Tears rolled out of Duan Yu's eyes. He wiped them off with his sleeve and replied in between his sobs: "I accidentally killed 2 of them and... and scared... scared another one to fall."

"So?" Mu WanQing asked, not knowing what to make of his crying.

"The Heavens want us to live, I... I killed for no good reason, I deserve to die." Duan Yu replied between sobs. "Those 3 men could have parents, wives, or kids, they would surely be destroyed when they hear the news. How... how could I have done this to them? To their families?"

"You got them too." Mu WanQing said with a sneer.

"I have parents, but no wives or kids." Duan Yu replied, not understanding what she was trying to say.

Mu WanQing's eyes suddenly flashed a very peculiar look, but only for a brief instant before turning back to the cold, steely look they had before. "After they make it up the cliff, are they going to kill you? Are they going to kill me?" She demanded.

"Mostly likely."

"Hmph! You would prefer being killed over killing others?"

"If it was just me, then I would never kill anyone. But... but I can't let them hurt you." Duan Yu said after he thought about it for a bit.

"Why?" Mu WanQing fiercely demanded.

"You saved my life before, I have to save yours too."

"I'm going to ask you a question, and if you don't tell me the whole truth, the arrows in my sleeve are going straight through you throat!" She lifted her right arm slightly off the ground as she said that so it aimed towards Duan Yu.

"So those arrows of yours that killed all those people came from your sleeve." Duan Yu observed.

"Idiot," Mu WanQing shouted. "Are you or are you not going to listen to me?"

"You are not going kill me, why should I listen to you?"

"If you really get on my nerves, I very well could decide to kill you," Mu WanQing replied viciously. "Now tell me, did you see my face?"

Duan Yu shook his head: "No."

"Really?" Mu WanQing asked. Her voice was getting lower and her forehead was covered in sweat, obviously she was using up all strength to sustain this conversation. Nevertheless, the tone of her voice was still very threatening.

"Why should I lie to you? You can't just not believe everything I say." Duan Yu replied.

"You could have done it while I was passed out."

"I was too occupied with that wound on your back, it didn't even cross my mind."

Angry, Mu WanQing's breathing became labored as she demanded: "You... saw the skin on my back? You... you applied herbs to my back?"

"Yes," Duan Yu answered. "That blush of yours works wonders. I can't believe it's actually a blood-clotter."

"Could you come here help me sit up a little?" Mu WanQing suddenly asked.

"Alright, you shouldn't talk so much. Just rest until you are alright and then we can try and find a way to escape." Duan Yu said as he walked over to her side to give her a hand.

His hands was just about to touch her arm when suddenly, "Smack!" He was slapped so hard on his left cheek that it left felt as if it was on fire. Although Mu WanQing was injured, her moves still packed quite a punch.

Duan Yu, caught totally off guard, was dizzy and got spun in a complete circle. Covering his cheeks with his hands, he angrily shouted: "Why... why did you hit me?"

"How... how dare you? How dare you... touch my skin? How dare you... look at my back...." Mu WanQing shouted back in equal fury before passing out from both anger and exhaustion.

Shocked, Duan Yu completely forgot about that slap as he scrambled forward and got her to sat back up again. Only then did he notice that blood was once again spilling out of the wound on her back; turned out that she had put too much force into that slap, and the wound that was just beginning to heal ripped open again.

"Miss Mu got mad at me for touching her skin, but if I don't do anything, she would surely die from blood loss. Oh well, I guess the worse that could happen is getting slapped a couple more times." Duan Yu decided.

So he ripped off a piece of his shirt and began wiping away the blood around the wound. But with her snow-white and baby smooth skin in his sights coupled with wave after wave of her fragrance, he did not dare to look more than he had to as he hurriedly applied the blush onto the wound again.

This time it didn't take as long for Mu WanQing to come to. As soon as she opened her eyes, she shot a murderous look at Duan Yu, who, scared that she might hit him again, was standing a good distance away.

"You... again...." Mu WanQing said, knowing that Duan Yu re-applied the blush from the coolness she felt around the wound.

"I... I can't just let you die," Duan Yu argued.

Too exhausted to respond, all Mu WanQing could do was try and bring her labored breathing under control.

Suddenly noticing the sound of water running to his left, Duan Yu walked over and found a small but clean mountain creek. He bent down, washed his hands, and took a good sip of the water. Then he cupped some water in his hands, walked over to Mu WanQing's side, and said: "Come on, drink some water, you'll feel better."

Mu WanQing hesitated, but losing all that blood had made her incredibly thirsty, so she pulled back a little corner of her veil, revealing her mouth.

It was high noon at that moment and the sun shone down directly onto her face. Duan Yu noticed that her chin was quite small, her face was white and, just like her back, smooth as silk, with not even a trace of a blemish was to be found. Her cherry-like mouth sat cutely in the middle and, with her lips quite thin, revealed 2 rows of jade-like teeth. He suddenly realized: "She... she's actually incredibly beautiful!"

Some of the water had leaked through the cracks between his fingers and spilled onto Mu WanQing's face. To Duan Yu, they looked like little dew drops on the morning flowers. Taken by surprise by the whole situation, he did not dare to look anymore and turned his head away.

Mu WanQing finished the water he had brought her and said: "More, go get me more."

Duan Yu obeyed her and got her more water. After a total of 3 trips, her thirst was finally quench.

Duan Yu, being extra safe, crawled to the edge of the cliff and looked around. He saw 7 or 8 men standing on the other side of the gorge looking over on this side with bows and arrows in hand. Looking down the face of the cliff, he saw that nobody else was trying to climb up. But knowing that the enemy wouldn't just give up, he figured they would eventually figure out another way to attack.

He shook his head, drank some more water from the creek, then washed off some of Mu WanQing's blood that had spilled onto his face. Then it occurred to him: "The cure for Intestine Fragmenter! Not that it would really make a difference now, but I guess it couldn't hurt to use it."

So he took out the little porcelain bottle out from inside his shirt, dumped some of the powder onto his hand, and swallowed it with a mouthful of mountain water. He thought: "This medicine tastes horrible, but at least it's better than how that Intestine Fragmenter tasted. Ay, who knew Miss Mu is that beautiful. Hopefully this situation is like it's written: 'lose horse', 'worry not for evil'."

{Again, Duan Yu is quoting from a book that he read, most likely the Book of Changes, which seemed to be his favorite.}

But then he thought: "There's water here, but no food. Our enemy don't have to get up here, they just have to wait a few days and the 2 of us will die of starvation."

Depressed and showing it on his face, he returned to Mu WanQing's side and commented: "Too bad there isn't any fruit on this hill, or else we can at least pick them to combat hunger."

"Useless talk!" Mu WanQing replied. "All that talking isn't going to help us is it?"

After a pause, she suddenly asked: "How did you meet that little girl of the Zhongs?"

Duan Yu told her, as good as he can remember it, how he first met Zhong Ling in Sword Lake Palace, how he was made fun of, and how she came to his rescue, etc., etc.

Mu WanQing did not utter a word during the entire story. After he finished, she snickered: "You don't know any kungfu, yet you keep on meddling in other people's business in the martial world, are you tired of living or something?"

"I got myself into this mess, so I deserve whatever I have coming, nothing to say about that. But I just don't feel right about dragging miss into this as well." Duan Yu replied, rather apologetically.

"What are you talking about? These enemies are mine, if you didn't exist they would still gang up on me wouldn't they? If it wasn't for you, I wouldn't have to worry about you... I... I would be able to go out in style and die in battle, at least it would be much better than starving to death here."

Mu WanQing paused after she said "worry about you" because she felt rather foolish to actually saying that she worried about him and was blushing feverishly. Luckily the veil covered her face and Duan Yu attributed the change in her voice to the fact that she, being exhausted, was finding it difficult to speak. So he tried to comfort her: "Miss, just rest a couple of days for your back to recover. Then when you try and bust out, they might not be able to stop you."

Mu WanQing let out a cold laugh and said: "Easy for you to say, is it possible for this wound of mine to heal in a couple of days? There really is quite a lot of them out there...."

Suddenly, from the other side of the gorge, there came a howl so loud that it shook the entire mountain. Mu WanQing snapped up, grabbed Duan Yu's arm for support, and asked in a shaking voice: "Who... who is that? How can his inner strength be that strong?"

The howl circled the mountain endlessly, lasting for what seemed like forever. With all the echoes it caused in the mountains, it was literally like an army of ghosts, crying and screaming upon their return to claim their lost souls. Even though it was in the middle of the day, Duan Yu suddenly felt as if the entire sky darkened right in front of him. Only after an eternity did the howls and noises gradually cease.

"This guy's kungfu is so good that there's no possible way for me to beat him." Mu WanQing said. "Just... just leave, don't worry about me anymore."

"Miss Mu, is that how you think of me? I, Duan Yu, might be 'a piece of wood', but I'm not that kind of a person." Duan Yu answered with a smile.

Mu WanQing stared at him for a long time, stared at him with what actually seemed like care and worry. "That 'piece of wood' business was just me messing with you, don't worry about it." She said in a gentle and tender voice. "Why do you want to die with me? What... what good would it do? Just run away and think of me once in a while, and that would be good enough for me."

Duan Yu had never heard her talk like this before. Once that howl went up, she seemed to have turned into a different person. It's just that she was so used to talking in that cold, uncaring way that all those nice and sweet things came out rather stiff and awkward for her. He had to smile: "Miss Mu, why couldn't you talk like this all the time? You were really like a beautiful and elegant lady just then."

Mu WanQing humphed and, suddenly turning vicious, demanded: "How do you know whether or not I'm pretty? You saw my face didn't you?"

Her fist tightened like an iron clamp around Duan Yu's arm.

"When I got you water, I saw half of your face." Duan Yu finally said with a sigh. "But just that half of your face is enough to make you a rare beauty."

Despite Mu WanQing's personality, she's still just a girl. So she couldn't help but feel good when he complimented her looks. Besides, she had been wearing that veil for so long that nobody had ever complimented on her looks before, all anybody ever noticed was her kungfu. Feeling warm and fuzzy, she loosened her grip and instructed: "Go find a cave or something to hide in. No matter what you see, don't come out. He'll be here any minute now."

Quite taken aback by that revelation, Duan Yu jumped up and shouted: "I can't let him get up here!"

He ran over to the edge of the cliff and looked down. His eyes suddenly blurred as he saw what looks to be a man in yellow making his way up the face of the cliff at an incredible speed. The cliff was almost a sheer drop, yet this man was moving as if he was on flat ground.

Terrified, Duan Yu shouted down: "Hey! Stop! Or else I'll start throwing rocks down at you!"

That man let out a huge laugh and actually began to move even faster.

Seeing that he was making his way up the mountain that fast, yet not wanting to kill again, Duan Yu picked up a rock and threw it a couple of meters to the side of the man. The rock wasn't really that big, but after dropping such a long distance, it carried quite a force with it. "You see that? Had I hit you, you would be dead by now! Turn around!" Duan Yu shouted.

"Stinking bastard! Don't want to live anymore? How dare you greet me so rudely?" That man let out a cold snicker and said.

Seeing him moving even faster, Duan Yu had no other choice. He picked up a couple more rock and aimed it at the man's head. Closing his eyes so he didn't have to watch the man die, he dropped the rocks. All he heard was the sound of the rocks falling through the air and the man's loud laugh. Confused, Duan Yu opened his eyes and saw that the man was still alright and the rocks had already fallen past him. Now Duan Yu was terrified. In a near panic, he grabbed a whole pile of rocks and dumped the entire load onto the man at once.

That man waited until the rocks were almost about to hit his head, and then he reached up with a hand and casually pushed them out of the way. Once in a while he would give a little hop sideways and avoid a potentially troublesome rock. Duan Yu dumped about 30 or so rocks as fast as he could at him, but all he was able to do was slow the man's progress a bit. Not being able to do a thing as he got closer and closer, so close in fact that Duan Yu could just about make out the man's frightening face, Duan Yu scrambled back to Mu WanQing's side and shouted: "Miss... Miss Mu, that... that man's too strong, let's get out of here!"

"Too late," Mu WanQing coldly replied.

Duan Yu was just about to reply when a huge force suddenly hit him from behind, sending him flying. He fell into a little group of trees and was almost completely knocked out. Luckily, he had landed into an area that was literally covered with little trees, thus he only suffered minor scratches on his face and not much more. By the time he had gotten up from the fall, that person was already standing at Mu WanQing's side.

Duan Yu scrambled up and positioned himself in front of Mu WanQing, blocking the man's path. "Who are you? And why are you trying to hurt others?" He asked.

Mu WanQing was caught completely by surprise. "Ru... Run! Get out of here!" She shouted at him.

That man let out a hearty laugh and said: "Too late to run away now! Your old man here is the Divine Croc of the South Seas; in terms of kungfu, I rank number... number... hehe I'm sure you 2 kids have heard about me, right?"

Duan Yu's heart was pounding, but he forced himself to not panic and began sizing up the man in front of him. The first thing he noticed was his unusually large head. Two rows of white and menacing teeth can be seen in his huge mouth, yet his eyes were unexpectedly small and round, like 2 peas. Still, the force in his stare was positively menacing as they looked Duan Yu up and down over and over again, causing Duan Yu to shudder involuntarily. He had an average built, but his legs were skinny, almost to the bone. He carried a beard that looked as if it was made out of iron, every single strand was stiff and straight. Despite the beard, it was impossible to tell how old he was. He had on a silk robe which drooped down to his knees. The silk was of a very high quality and expensive, yet the pants he had on was made of very cheap and rough material and was so dirty that it was difficult to make out its original. His fingers were long and pointy, which reminded Duan Yu of chicken paws. At first glance, Duan Yu had thought that this man was just indescribably ugly, but the more he looked at him, the more he felt that it was only because the man's looks, built, and even clothing just simply didn't match.

"Come here," Mu WanQing instructed. "Stand beside me."

"You... you sure he won't harm you?" Duan Yu asked.

Mu WanQing let out a little cold laugh and said: "With that little bit of stuff you know, what chance do you have of stopping 'the Divine Croc of the South Seas'?"

Despite her tone of voice, Mu WanQing couldn't help but be touched that Duan Yu would actually put himself in danger to protect her.

Duan Yu figured that she was right. If this man wanted to get him out of the way, all he had to do was simply lift his arm. So it was probably best not to anger him yet. Thus he backed up until he was even with Mu WanQing and said: "Oh, so you are 'The Divine Croc of the South Seas' who's kungfu is ranked number... number... that is... I have much admired your famed and illustrious name. I have humbly been able to meet several brave men and heroes these last couple of days, and I have to say that your amazing kungfu has to be the best among them. Not one of those rocks I tossed down hit! Sir, your kungfu is truly amazing."

"Even though I'm brown-nosing, his kungfu really is something else, so all this kissing up isn't that bad." DuanYu reasoned.

Divine Croc of the South Seas was on cloud nine from all the praise that Duan Yu tossed at him. So he let out another, rather stiff, laugh and replied: "Your kungfu might not be anything to brag about, but at least you know what's good when you see it. I guess I'll let you live just for that. Now get out of my way."

Ecstatic, Duan Yu suggested: "Then could you, sir, please let Miss Mu go too?"

Divine Croc's eyes bugged out, reached out with one arm, and gave Duan Yu a shove that pushed him back several steps before he was able to recover his balance. In a heavy and vicious voice, he said: "Take one more step forward, and your old man here is going to kill you!"

"Men like him is capable of doing anything. I better just stay here for now." Duan Yu thought to himself.

Divine Croc opened his eyes wide and sized Mu WanQing up several times before asking: "Did you kill 'Little Devil' Sun SanBa?"

"Yes," Mu WanQing replied.

"Did you know that he was my beloved disciple?"

Duan Yu was screaming on the inside: "Oh bad! This is bad! Miss Mu killed his beloved disciple, that's not the kind of thing that you can just make it go away. Even if I kiss up to him ten times as much it would still be of no use."

"Not when I killed him, but I did find out several days later." Mu WanQing replied.

"Are of scared of me?" Divine Croc of the South Seas asked.


Divine Croc let out a thunderous roar of fury that shook the entire mountain. "How could you be not scared of me? How... how dare you! Who's protection are you hiding under?" He demanded.

"Yours!" Mu WanQing replied coldly.

Divine Croc was taken aback for a moment by this. "Damn rubbish! What do you mean you are hiding under my protection?"

"You are one of the '4 Arch-Villains." How could a man at such a lofty position stoop so low as to attack a severely wounded girl?" Mu WanQing's reply actually seemed to include a bit of praise.

Divine Croc paused a bit in surprise before bursting out laughing heartily: "That's a pretty good point!"

Upon hearing the words "4 Arch-Villains," Duan Yu suddenly realized that this man was actually a friend of Zhong Ling's father, Zhong WanChou. Hoping to get to a better position using Zhong WanChou's name, he cut in right as he heard the man make that last comment.

"Every where in the martial world you hear people say that the Divine Croc of the South Seas is a great hero and a brave man. Not only that, some people say that Divine Croc wouldn't even fight if his opponent was just a single man. The more foes he fights at one time, the happier he is. This, obviously, shows how great of a fighter he really is."

Divine Croc was smiling so much as he was listening to that that his round eyes became just 2 slits. Nodding profusely, he asked: "That's another pretty good point, who did you hear that from?"

"No Measure Sword Sect's head of their East Faction Zuo ZiMu, head of their West Faction Xin ShuangQing, the head of the Divine Farmer Clan SiKong Xuan, the master of Thousand-Enmities Valley Zhong WanChou, his wife Gan BaoBao, and then there's Grandma Rui and Grandma Ping from just south of the Yangtze. Hehe, too many, too many. I can't remember all of them."

Divine Croc nodded and said: "You, little fella, is quite a character eh? Next time you hear somebody praising me, better remember his name for me, ok?" Turning to Mu WanQing, he inquired: "I heard that your kungfu is pretty good, how did you get hurt so bad? Who did it?"

Looking weak and wronged, Mu WanQing replied: "There were 4 of them and they ganged up on me. I'm not like you, the more enemies the better, I can't handle that many of them."

"Yet another good point. Four fighters ganging up on one girl? Have they got no shame?" Divine Croc replied.

"That's right!" Duan Yu immediately cut in. "A real hero wouldn't even fight if there was just one foe, where did they get off fighting 4 against 1? It's a shame that you, sir, wasn't there, or else you would grab one in each hand and snap the bones in half."

"No! No! No!" Divine Croc shook his head vehemently.

Every time he shook his head and said the first "No!", Duan Yu's heart skipped a beat, he said 3 straight "No!" in a row, so Duan Yu's heart skipped 3 straight beats. He could not figure out where exactly he had said something wrong.

"I don't snap their bones in half. I just go 'Crack!' and snap their neck. Snapping their bones doesn't necessarily kill then, no fun in that. But snap their necks and those sons of turtles will die. Don't believe me? Then let me snap your neck and you'll see." Divine Croc continued.

"I believe! I believe you! No need to prove it to me." Duan Yu immediately replied. Then he suddenly remembered that one of the servants in the Zhong family was welcoming a "Yue Number Two" of the 4 Arch-Villains who, because he mistakenly said "Yue Number Three" and called him a "great man," had his neck snapped by the man. So the man in front of him must be Yue Two.

"That's right! You are as evil as evil can get. Some people call you Yue Number Two, I say you should be Yue Number One. When Yue Number One grabs somebody's neck, that man is dead for sure!" Duan Yu praised.

Happy beyond words, Divine Croc grabbed Duan Yu's shoulders and shook him out of joy. "That's right. That's so right! You are a pretty smart little fella, actually know that I'm as evil as evil can get. Yue Number One is out of the question, Number Two is pretty good anyway."

Duan Yu felt as if his shoulders were about to be squeezed into little pieces. Nevertheless, he forced a smile on his face and said: "Says who? I say the words 'Yue Number One' without the slightest of doubts in my heart."

"Duan Yu, Duan Yu. What won't you do to save Miss Mu? Kissing up like a coward, where are all those morals you got from all those books now?" He thought to himself. "But if it was just for me, then I would never say anything like this. Scared of death, what kind of a man would I be then? It's only because I'm trying to save Miss Mu do I force myself to stoop down to such a level. It is written in the Book of Changes: 'If going along helps those who are true, then real gentlemen should do it'. That's the real logic behind conquering the hard with a soft touch." Having reasoned himself to that point, he felt a lot better.

Divine Croc let go of Duan Yu's shoulders and turned to Mu WanQing: "Yue Number Two is a real man and would never hurt a girl...."

"He still wouldn't claim to the title of Number One. Wonder how evil that Number One guy is." Duan Yu thought to himself, but afraid of upsetting him, he kept quiet and did not ask.

Divine Croc continued: "... Come next time when you have got helpers, then I'll kill you. I can't kill you today, but I have to ask you a question. I heard that you said you had always worn the veil so as to not allow anyone to see your face, and if anyone saw your face, then you'll have to either kill him or marry him. Is this true?"

This was a complete shock to Duan Yu, and then he saw Mu WanQing nod, which made this whole matter even more confusing and shocking to him.

"Why the hell did you make up such a messed up rule?" Divine Croc asked.

"That is what I swore in front of my master. If I didn't, my master wouldn't have taught me kungfu." Mu WanQing replied.

"And who the hell is your master? Talk about messed up! Wow, ridiculous stuff, just ridiculous!" Divine Croc replied.

"Out of respect to your seniority, I have been very polite towards you. But you are wrong to talk about my master in such a rude manner." Mu WanQing replied with pride.

Divine Croc reached out and struck a huge piece of rock that was sitting right beside him with his palm. Immediately the rock shattered, sending small pieces flying off and hitting Duan Yu, giving him quite a sting. "How could a person be that good at kungfu? If that had hit a person, there's no way the person would survive." Duan Yu thought to himself as he turned and looked at Mu WanQing.

But Mu WanQing kept her stare, not showing the slightest hint of fear, not even a blink.

Divine Croc traded stares with her for a long time before finally breaking the standstill: "Alright, I guess you have point. Who is your master? Who is so... hehe... such... hehe...."

"Master is known as the 'Guest of Secluded Valley'." Mu WanQing answered.

"'Guest of Secluded Valley'? Never heard of it, must not be anyone important!" Divine Croc mumble to himself while trying to recall where he had heard of the name before.

"My master lives alone in a secluded valley, that's the reason for the name 'Guest of Secluded Valley'. How could that compare with the famous name of yours?"

"Another good point." Divine Croc nodded before suddenly raising his voice in a shout: "My disciple Sun SanBa, did he see your face? Is that why you killed him?"

"You know what kind of a person your disciple is," Mu WanQing replied coldly. "Had he even learned a tenth of you kungfu, then I wouldn't have been able to kill him."

"Another good point." Divine Croc nodded. But his thoughts turned to the fact that his sect had always, by rule and tradition, passed their kungfu down through one disciple and one disciple only. The death of Sun SanBa meant that more than 10 years of hard work in his teaching Sun SanBa had been completely in vain. The more he thought about it, the madder he got until he finally screamed: "TaMaDe!"

Seeing his complexion suddenly turn into a burnt yellow color and his expression turn animalistic, both Mu WanQing and Duan Yu was scared, and that was before they heard him scream: "I must avenge my disciple!"

"Second Master Yue, you already said that you wouldn't hurt her." Duan Yu immediately cut in, bumping him up to a more respectable "Second Master Yue". "Besides, it's probably for the best that your disciple died. He couldn't even learn a tenth of your kungfu, had he lived, he could have lost you a lot of face."

"Yet another good point. I can't afford to lose any face." Divine Croc nodded and turned to Mu WanQing. "Did my disciple see your face?"

"No!" Mu WanQing said, grinding her teeth together.

"Alright, so that my disciple may rest in peace, I'm going to take a look and see whether or not you look like an ugly monster or a beautiful goddess."

This gave Mu WanQing the scare of her life. She had sworn in front of her master, if Divine Croc removed her veil by force, there was no way she could kill him, but how could she marry him? Almost panicking, she replied: "You are a famous man in the martial world, how could you stoop so low to do such an evil thing?"

"I'm as evil as evil can get, the more evil the action the better. I only have one rule in my life, and that's never kill anyone who can't fight back. Other than that, everything goes, nothing is off limits. So why don't you just be a good girl, take off the veil yourself, and save me the trouble." Divine Croc replied with a sneer.

"You really have to see my face?" Mu WanQing asked, her voice was shaking.

Growing impatient, Divine Croc threatened: "If you keep on stalling, not only am I going to take off your veil, I'm going to rip off all your clothes too. I said I won't snap your neck, but snapping your arms and legs aren't out of the question is it?"

"I can't kill him, so the only way left is suicide." Mu WanQing decided.

She turned to Duan Yu and shot him a look, telling him to run. Duan Yu shook his head. With a little quiver of his beard, Divine Croc reached out with those chicken-claw like hand of his, trying to grab Mu WanQing's veil.

Mu WanQing flicked her sleeve. "Shoo! Shoo! Shoo!" Three small arrows shot out with lightning quickness and hit Divine Croc's belly. But with a pop, each of the arrows fell harmlessly down to the ground, it was as if he had on some kind of armor underneath his shirt. With another twitch, Mu WanQing shot out 3 more poisonous arrows, 2 at his chest and 1 headed toward his face. As if they hit a hard rock, the 2 arrows flying towards his chest fell down onto the ground. The third arrow was just about to hit his face when Divine Croc reached up with his middle finger and, with a gentle flick, the arrow disappeared from sight.

Mu WanQing took out her sword and brought it up to her neck. However, because of her severe wounds, she was not able to move fast enough as Divine Croc, with one swift move, took the sword out of her hand and threw it onto the ground. With a cold laugh, he said: "My rule is only 'Never kill anyone who can't fight back'. You shot 6 arrows at me, so you made the first move. I'm going to take a look at your face and then kill you. You made the first move, so you can't accuse me for breaking my rule."

"No! You are wrong!" Duan Yu suddenly shouted.

"What!" Divine Croc turned his head towards Duan Yu.

"You call yourself a real man, how could you bully a severely wounded girl?"

"She just shot 6 poisonous arrows at me, didn't you see that? This is a severely wounded girl bullying a real man, not a real man bullying a severely wounded girl."

"No, you are still wrong."

"Bullshit! What do you mean still wrong?" Divine Croc shouted in anger.

"Your rule is 7 words, 'Never kill anyone who can't fight back', right?"

"That's right!" Divine Croc's eyes looked as if they were going to pop out.

"Can those 7 words be changed?"

"My rules, so of course they can't be changed!" Divine Croc answered impatiently.

"Not one word?'

"Not even half a word!"

"If it's changed, then what?"

"Then I'm a tortoise son of a turtle!"

"Ok, very good! You haven't hit Miss Mu, yet Miss Mu tried to hit you with arrows, that's not 'fighting you', that's 'striking first'. If you hit her, in her condition, there is no way that she could fight back. That's why she tried to ambush you, because she can't fight back. If you killed her, then you have changed your rule, and if you change your rule, then you are a tortoise son of a turtle."

Duan Yu had been reading Confucius and Buddhist books ever since he learned how to read, and had analyzed all those ambiguous saying in those books down to the bone. Sayings such as "Is isn't, but have not to", and "White horse is no horse, hard rock is no rock", he analyzed and thought about them until there was nothing left to think about anymore. That's why at this crucial moment, he was able to just grab a hold of Divine Croc's rule and run with it.

Divine Croc let out a furious howl and grabbed Duan Yu by the shoulders.

"How dare you call me a tortoise son of a turtle?" He shouted as he was about to bring his palm down on Duan Yu's head.

"If you change your rule, only then are you a tortoise son of a turtle!" Duan Yu shouted back in a hurry. "If you don't change your rules, then you won't be a tortoise son of a turtle! Whether or not you are a tortoise son of a turtle is completely up to you."

Seeing that even though his life hung by the thinnest of threads, Duan Yu was still shouting "tortoise son of a turtle" non-stop. Mu WanQing knew that Divine Croc would undoubtedly explode in anger and break his neck. Suddenly overwhelmed with sadness, tears filled her eyes as she turned away, not wanting to watch any further.

But unexpectedly, those few words stopped Divine Croc in his tracks. "If I break his neck, then wouldn't that be killing someone who couldn't fight back? Doesn't that make me a tortoise son of a turtle?" He thought to himself.

Staring at Duan Yu with that pair of small eyes of his, he gradually tightened his grip. Soon, Duan Yu's bones were creaking, hurting him so much that he almost fainted. "Come on! Kill me! I can't fight back!" Duan Yu shouted at the top of his lungs.

"I'm not going to fall for that!" Divine Croc replied. "You really want me to be a tortoise son of a turtle don't you?"

As he said that, Divine Croc lifted Duan Yu off the ground and slammed him down hard back onto the ground. Duan Yu temporarily blacked out from the impact before recovering to feel as if all of his internal organs had exploded.

"I'm not going to fall for that! I'm not going to kill you 2 little devils!" Divine Croc mumbled to himself before suddenly reaching out and grabbing the green silk cape that Mu WanQing was wearing.

With a loud rip, he tore it off. Mu WanQing let out a shocked yell as she instinctively shrank back. Divine Croc merely raised his arm up and tossed the cape aside. The cape caught the wind and started to fly off. Like a giant lotus leaf, it gently glided over the edge of the cliff and into the raging currents of the LanCang River. "If you don't take off your veil now, I'm going to rip off your shirt next!" Divine Croc said with a sinister smile.

"Come here," Mu WanQing gestured towards Duan Yu, who limped over to her side as quickly as he could.

Mu WanQing turned towards him so as to face away from Divine Croc. "You are the first man in this world to see my face." She said gently and slowly removed her veil.

Duan Yu's entire body shook. What he saw before him was more elegant than the shiny moon on a cloudless night and more beautiful than the lonesome flower that blossoms in the middle of a blizzard. A beauty fit for legends. The only thing was that her face was incredibly pale, which was most likely due to the fact that she was wearing the veil for such a long time. Even that thin pair of lips lacked color, but to Duan Yu, it just made her seem even more vulnerable and lovely. How could this be the same person be that monster who wouldn't even blink when she killed?

Mu WanQing put her veil down on the ground. "If you want to see my face, you are going to have to ask my husband first." She said to Divine Croc without turning around.

"You are married? Who's your husband?" Divine Croc didn't quite believe what he just heard.

"I swore that if a man ever saw my face, I would either kill him or marry him." Mu WanQing said as she pointed at Duan Yu. "He had already seen my face, and I don't want to kill him. So I can only marry him."

"This... this is...." Duan Yu was rendered completely speechless from this turn of events.

After recovering from the initial shock, the Divine Croc turned to Duan Yu. He sized Duan Yu up and down with those pea like eyes of his, sending chills down Duan Yu's spine as he was afraid that Divine Croc would, in a fit of rage, would snap his neck in an instant. Suddenly, Divine Croc began clicking his tongue over and over again out of excitement. "Amazing! Simply amazing! Quick! Turn around!" He said as his face lit up.

Too scared to disobey him, Duan Yu turned around. "Amazing! Wonderful! You look just like me! You are just like me!" Divine Croc commented.

There was not a thing that he could have said that would have shocked Duan Yu and Mu WanQing more than those 5 words: "You look just like me". The 2 of them thought to themselves: "What are you talking about? You are a kungfu master, and ugly. There is not even a similarity, not to mention the words 'just like'?"

Divine Croc practically jumped behind Duan Yu as he proceeded to grab the back of Duan Yu's head, squeeze his arms and legs, and even poke his waist a couple of times. After a couple of pokes and grabs, he cracked open a huge smile: "Just like me! Almost exactly like me!" Grabbing Duan Yu's arm, he continued. "Come on with me!"

"Go with you to where?" Duan Yu asked, completely befuddled.

"Oh just come with me!" Divine Croc replied. "Quick, kowtow! Then beg me to take you on as a disciple. As long as you beg, I will immediately take you in."

"What! This... this...." For the second time in just minutes, Duan Yu was rendered completely speechless by the surprising turn of events.

Divine Croc began jumping around and waving his arms like crazy, as if he had just found the most precious jewel in the world. "Your arms and legs are extraordinarily long, the back of your head is protruding out, and your waist is very soft and flexible; plus you are smart, young, and male. You are truly an amazing specimen for learning kungfu." He turned around as he spoke. "See? This is the back of my head, isn't it just like yours?"

Duan Yu felt the back of his head, it really did seem as if the back of their heads were very alike. Who knew that when he said "You are just like me!" he was only talking about the back of their heads?

Turning back around with the biggest possible smile on his face, Divine Croc continued: "We South Sea Sect had always had this rule, each man can only take one disciple. That dead disciple of mine, 'Little Devil' Sun SanBa, the back of his head was nowhere near as good as yours. So he sucked, couldn't even learn a tenth of my kungfu. It's best that he died, this way is all clean and neat, because I don't have to kill him now so I can take you as a disciple instead."

Duan Yu involuntarily shuddered. He was thinking to himself how cruel this man in front of him was, willing to kill his very own disciple so as to be able to change disciples just because he noticed someone else was better suited for kungfu. Even if he did want to learn kungfu, which he didn't, he would never choose this person to be his master. But if he refused, then disaster would be upon him. Just as he wasn't sure what he should do, Divine Croc suddenly shouted at the top of his lungs: "What do you think you guys are doing sneaking around like that! Get the hell out here now! Every single one of you!"

A dozen or so people came crawling out of the bushes, among them were Grandma Rui, Grandma Ping, and that swordsman. Since Divine Croc had climbed onto this ledge, Duan Yu had not been able to toss more rocks and thus keep them away. So this group was able to sneak up the cliff as well.

Even though they were holding their breaths and not moving while they were in the bush, they had no chance of escaping Divine Croc's sensitive ears. Because he was so overjoyed at discovering such a spectacular treasure in Duan Yu, he didn't really get angry right away. So he shot a mean look towards Grandma Rui, with a smile still lingering on his face, and shouted: "What are you doing here? Did you come to congratulate your old man here on finding a price disciple?"

"We are here to catch this little whore," Grandma Rui pointed to Mu WanQing and said, "to avenge the deaths of our companions."

"She's my disciple's wife!" Divine Croc yelled back, "How dare you try and capture her? TaMaDe! Get the hell out of here!"

Everyone was speechless as they just stood there, staring at each other.

Duan Yu finally summed up his courage and spoke up: "I can't be your disciple, I already have a master."

This made Divine Croc furious: "Who's your master? How can his kungfu be any better than mine?"

"You probably can't do a single bit of my master's kungfu! The 'Gua-Xiang' and the 'Xi-Ci' of 'Zhou-Yi', do you know anything about them? How about the reasons behind 'Ming-Yi' and 'Wei-Ji'? Can you explain them to me?"

Divine Croc of the South Seas just scratched his head. Gua-Xiang? Xi-Ci? He really never ever heard of any of them. Ming-Yi? Wei-Ji? For all he knows they really might be some kind of incredible kungfu.

{Note: Once again, all those things that Duan Yu just quoted are ideas from the Book of Changes.}

Seeing the troubled look on his face, Duan Yu continued: "Looks like you don't know any of these high level stuffs. So, while I'm grateful that you would actually consider me as a disciple, I could only accept it in my thoughts and not in my actions. How about next time I invite my master along and the 2 of you can duel it out and see who is really better. If you beat him, then I could still ask to be your disciple."

"Alright! Who's your master? It's not like I'm scared of him or something. When do you want this duel to happen?"

Duan Yu only really wanted to ward him off for a while with that line of defense, but unexpectedly, Divine Croc was actually really demanding a duel. He was just in middle of trying to figure out what to say next when a sharp and metallic whistle came piercing through the mountains, apparently originating from very far away. The shrill lasted for an incredible, a disturbingly long amount of time. It was amazing that the person who was blowing the whistle could have such a long breath, as if his breath had no end. At first, what everyone on the ledge noticed was the almost unbearable pitch of the whistle, but the longer they listened the more shocked they became, until all they could do was stare at each other, again.

Divine Croc patted his head some and shouted: "I don't have time to talk to you right now, Big Brother is calling me. When does your master want to fight me? Where at? Well? Come on!"

"This... uh... I... can't really just arrange a fight for my master." Duan Yu stuttered before suddenly turning around and pointing to Grandma Rui: "As soon as you leave, these people will kill the 2 of us. How will I be able to tell my master then?"

Without even turning around, Divine Croc reached back with his left hand and grabbed that sword-wielding man by the chest. Then, with a simple lean to his left, his right hand fell onto the top of the man's head, his left hand rotated right, his right hand rotated left, and his arms intersected. "Crack!" That man's neck snapped. His eyes stared out behind him as his head softly fell down. The sword in his right hand was half pulled out, which was already amazingly quick; but he still nevertheless died before he even pulled his sword out.

This was the same man, during the fight against Mu WanQing before, whose quickness stood out and was able to knock down those poison arrows that she fired at almost point blank range. But now, against just a simple twist from Divine Croc, he didn't even have a fighting chance. All the spectators were so shocked that they couldn't even move. Divine Croc then casually flicked his arm and tossed the corpse to the side. Three men who were with Grandma Rui suddenly, and simultaneously, let out a huge howl and charged. Divine Croc lifted up his right foot and kicked 3 times. All 3 of the men took off and flew over the cliff. The bloodcurdling shrieking came shooting up from the bottom of cliff and echoed all around the mountains until every hair on Duan Yu's body was standing on its end. Everyone of the group with Grandma Rui was scared out of their wits. "'Crack' and one neck is snapped. Hehe, so much fun!" Divine Croc said with a laugh. "One is not enough, I have to do it again. Whoever gets left behind will get his neck snapped."

Scared beyond description, Grandma Rui, Grandma Ping, and the rest of the people in her group all scrambled to the edge of the cliff as fast as they could and began to climb down.

"Can your master do that?" Divine Croc turned towards Duan Yu with a strange laugh. "If you become my disciple, I would immediately teach you how to do that. Your wife's kungfu is pretty good, so if she doesn't listen to you, then you can just 'Crack' and snap her neck in half."

Suddenly the metallic shrill picked up again, only this time it was in an endless number of short screeches. "Alright, alright! I'm coming! You and your grandmother, what's the hurry?" Divine Croc yelled at the direction of the whistle, as if the other person could hear him. "Be a good boy and wait here, don't you go anywhere." He instructed Duan Yu before he hurriedly ran to the edge and jumped over the edge.

"That'll surely kill him wouldn't it?" A surprised Duan Yu thought to himself.

So Duan Yu ran to the edge of the cliff and looked down. Divine Croc was making his way down the cliff a huge hop at a time. For every 30 meters or so that he fell, he would just reach out with his hand and push off of the cliff, enabling him to fall another 30 meters or so without hitting anything. Soon, he disappeared among the white clouds that surrounded the cliff.

Duan Yu stuck his tongue out and made a face out of a mixture of surprise, worry, and relief. Nothing else to do, he returned back to Mu WanQing's side. "That was so clever of you Miss, just like that, you had that evil-doer stumped." He said with a smile.

"Stumped?" Mu WanQing was quite puzzled.

"This... well, had Miss not lied and said that I was the first man to see your face, then you would... would...."

"Who lied? I can't go back on something I swore on. From this day forth, you are my husband. But I won't permit you to become his disciple and learn that neck breaking skill of his to use it on me."

Duan Yu was startled for a moment before replying: "You were in danger and were merely stalling, why take it so seriously? How can I be Miss's... Miss's... that... husband?"

Using the rock that she had been leaning on as support, Mu WanQing slowly and shakily stood up. "What? You don't want me as your wife?" She demanded. "You don't think I'm good enough, is that it?"

"Miss, the most important thing right now is for you to get better. Please don't worry too much about all this talk." Duan Yu replied, figuring that it's best not to anger her even more at this moment.

Mu WanQing took a step forward and slapped him hard on the cheeks. But as she did, her leg suddenly gave out and she lost her balance, falling into him. Duan Yu instinctively wrapped his arms around her and caught her.

Wrapped in his arms, the sudden realization that he was her husband hit Mu WanQing, causing her to feel all warm and fuzzy inside, instantly her anger was gone. "Let me go!" She demanded, blushing hard.

Duan Yu helped her to sit down by that rock again. "She has a weird personality to begin with, and now that she's wounded she's probably confused as well. I guess the best thing to do now is to go along with whatever she says. Didn't the 'Trap' dialogue talk about 'saying without sincerity'? Well, now that I'm 'trapped' here, I might as well go along with 'saying without sincerity' as well. Otherwise, not only will I become that devil of a monster's disciple, I'll turn into this little devil of a girl's spouse. Then wouldn't I, Duan Yu, become a little servant of a devil?" As he thought about this, he couldn't help but crack a laugh at his own reasoning inside.

Having made up his mind to just go along, he said in a tender voice: "Don't be mad. I'm going to get something for you to eat."

"As bare as this ledge is, where are you going to find anything edible?" Mu WanQing replied. "Good thing those guys were all scared off. Let me rest for a bit until I get some strength back. Then I'll carry you down."

"N... no... no!" Duan Yu waved his hand from side to side as fast as he could. "Absolutely no. You can't even walk, how can you carry me?"

"You would rather die than to owe me anything? Darling, even though I, Mu WanQing, is a girl that kills without blinking, I am still capable of sacrificing my life for my husband." She was dead serious and resolute when she said those words.

"Alright, thank you. Why don't you rest up a little first and then we'll worry about the rest. From now on, can you not wear that veil anymore?"

"If you don't want me to, then I won't." Mu WanQing replied as she took her veil off.

Once again, Duan Yu was startled by her beauty. Only this time he was rudely interrupted by an incredibly sharp and shooting pain in his belly that forced him scream out in pain. It felt as if there was a small dagger spinning and dicing inside his belly, chopping his intestines to little pieces. Doubling over, huge beads of sweat began to form on his forehead.

"What... What's the matter?" Mu WanQing was just as shocked.

"That... that Intestine Fragmenter...." Duan Yu replied in between groans.

"Ai-Yo! Didn't you take the remedy?"

"I did!"

"Maybe you didn't take enough." Mu WanQing said as she took the little bottle from inside his shirt and poured out some more powder for him. But seeing no signs of improvement from him, she sat down besides him and tried to comfort him: "Is it getting better?"

Nearly passing out from the pain, Duan Yu replied: "It's getting worse and worse. Maybe that remedy is a fake... fake one."

"How could that SiKong Xuan use poison to hurt people? Once this is over we'll go and kill every single person in that Divine Farmer Clan."

"We... we also gave... gave him the fake medicine. SiKong Xuan's just responding, we... we can't really blame him."

"What do you mean can't blame him? It's not a big deal if we give him some fake medicine, but how could he give us the fake medicine?" As she said this, Mu WanQing wiped off the sweat off of his forehead with her sleeves.

Seeing his ash white face, her heart was suddenly overwhelmed and tears began to fall from her eyes. "You... you can't die." She shakily said between sobs as she leaned down and rubbed her right cheek against his left cheek. "Dar... darling, please don't die."

Duan Yu, being hugged by her like this, had never been this close to a young girl in his life. On his cheek he felt her tender and smooth skin, in his ear he heard her gentle and desperate calls of "Darling", and from his nose he smelled her faint and sweet fragrance. How could he not feel as if he was in heaven? Coincidentally, the pain in his belly seemed to subside just at this moment. Turned out what SiKong Xuan had given him wasn't fake. This is actually because the Intestine Fragmenter, being as incredibly lethal as it is, was just beginning to kick in. Even though the cure had already eliminated most of the poison, a couple waves of almost unbearable pain could not have been avoided. Of course, SiKong Xuan had known this all along, it was just that he was too afraid to bring this up earlier in fear of annoying the Holy Emissaries from the Nimble Vulture Palace.

"Is the pain getting better?" Mu WanQing asked, noticing that he had stopped groaning.

"It is a little better. But... but...." Duan Yu replied.

"But what?"

"If you leave me, it'll probably start hurting again."

Mu WanQing blushed and pushed off of him. "So you were faking it all along." She scolded, in a girlish way.

Duan Yu blush furiously as well. But another pain shot through his belly again, causing him to start groaning again.

Mu WanQing grabbed a hold of his hand: "Darling, if you die, I don't want to live on either. We'll meet again in the afterlife and be husband and wife then."

"No, no!" Duan Yu replied, not wanting her to do anything like that. "First you have to avenge me. Then you'll have to visit and clean my tomb every year. I want you to do that at least, 40 years. Only then will I rest in peace."

{It is a Chinese tradition to visit and clean a dead relative or friend's tomb every year on a particular date to pay respects to the dead.}

"You know, you are a really weird person. What difference will it make to you if I visit and clean your tomb once you are dead? It's not like you get anything good out of it."

"But if you die with me, I will get even less out of that. Ok, listen to me. As beautiful as you are, if you just visit and clean my tomb once a year, I would be happy to just catch a glimpse of you in the afterlife. But if you die along with me, we'll all just turn into a pile of white bones, nothing pretty to look at there." Duan Yu replied.

Hearing him praise her, Mu WanQing was happy for a moment. But then she turned to the thought that she had just gave her life to him today and now she was going to watch him die. She couldn't stop the tears from falling once again.

Duan Yu reached over and held her around her waist. Feeling a tender and warm softness around his fingers, a light went on in his head and he lowered his head to kiss her on the lips. It was the first kiss of his life, so he didn't dare to prolong it too much before lifting his head back up and resume staring back at her beautiful face. Sighing, he said: "It's a shame that I won't live too much longer and can't stare at your beautiful face more."

The kiss caused Mu WanQing's heart to beat like crazy, her face blushed crazily as her bashfulness took over. The white face became even more colorful and beautiful because of it. "You are the first man in this world to see my face." She said. "After you die, I will carve up my face so as to not let another man see my real face."

Duan Yu wanted to tell her no, but for some reason, a wave of envy suddenly washed over him as he really did not want any other man to see such a beautiful face. So the words made it to the tip of his tongue but just wouldn't come out. Instead, he asked: "Why did you take such a harsh oath? Such a strange oath, it's kind of... kind of good!"

"You are now my husband, so it shouldn't be a problem for you to know." Mu WanQing replied. "I was an orphan and never knew my father or mother. Once I was born I was abandoned and left in the wild. Luckily, I was saved by my master. She brought me up, took care of me, and taught me martial arts. She told me that all men in this world are liars and if one of them ever saw my face, they would undoubtly try anything they can come up with to lead me into traps. So ever since I was 14, I wore a black veil. I have lived all 18 years of my life in the mountains with my master."

"Oh, so you are 18," Duan Yu cut in, "one year younger than me."

Mu WanQing nodded and continued: "This Spring, a person came to visit us. He was a messenger from my master's martial sister, 'Pretty Medicine Fork' Gan BaoBao."

"'Pretty Medicine Fork' Gan BaoBao?" Duan Yu interrupted her again. "Isn't she Zhong Ling's mom?"

"Right, she's my martial-aunt." Mu WanQing replied before her face suddenly darkened. "I forbid you from thinking about that little devil, Zhong Ling. You are my husband, you can only think about me."

Duan Yu stuck his tongue out a little and made a face.

"What was that for? I'm your wife. So that means I only think of you and you alone. To me, other men are pigs, are dogs, are dirty swines."

"But I can't do that." Duan Yu replied with a smile.

"Why not?" Mu WanQing fiercely demanded with her hands raised, ready to strike.

"My mom, and your master, aren't they all women? How can I pretend that they are dirty swines?"

Mu WanQing was rendered speechless for a long while before finally nodding ever so slightly: "But I won't allow you keep thinking about that little devil Zhong Ling."

"But I didn't keep thinking about her. You mentioned Madame Zhong, which reminded me of Zhong Ling." Duan Yu argued. "So what did that letter to your master say?"

"I don't know. After Master read the letter, she became very angry and distraught and tore the letter to pieces. Then she told the messenger: 'I understand now, go back.' After he left, Master cried for several days straight, not even eating. I tried to console her, but she wouldn't listen, she wouldn't even tell me why, other than that 2 women wronged her.

"I said: 'Master, don't be distraught. If those 2 evil women wronged you, then we'll just kill them.'

"'That's right!' Master agreed. So right away the 2 of us left the mountain to kill those 2 women. Master then said that she had no idea that all these years that these 2 women were the cause of all her sorrows, and that luckily Gan BaoBao finally explained it all to her and told her where the 2 women lived."

"Madame Zhong seemed so innocent and shy, but who knew she would be so sinister and scheming?" Duan Yu thought. "She's using you! She hates those 2 women herself, but instead she has set your master up to kill them."

"Once we left the mountain," Mu WanQing continued, "Master made me swear that if any man saw my face, if I couldn't kill him, then I would have to marry him. If that man won't take me as his wife, or he leaves me after he marries me, then I have to kill that heartless man myself. If I go back on my word, my master would kill herself as soon as she finds out. My master can go through with anything she says, so this is no empty threat made just to scare me."

Inside, Duan Yu couldn't describe how surprised he was: "All oaths sworn in the world says something to the effect of if I go back on my word, this would happen to me. But her master actually used her own suicide as a threat, better not let her break his oath."

"My master is like both my mother and father," Mu WanQing continued, "I owe so much to her. How can I not listen and obey her? Besides, she only did this because she was looking out for me. I didn't even think twice, I immediately kneeled and took the oath. The first thing the 2 of us did when we made it down the mountain was to go to SuZhou to kill the woman named Wang that lived there. But she lived in a really strange place, every way you turn you always end up in this little river bay or something like that. My master and I killed quite a number of that woman's underlings, but we still weren't able to see her. Later on my master suggested that we split up, and if we don't meet up in a month, then we'll head to DaLi separately and meet there because the second woman lived there. But unexpectedly that woman named Wang had a lot of very powerful servants, Grandma Rui and Grandma Ping those 2 old bags are the leaders of them. I can't beat all of them by myself, so I fought them off the best I can as I made my way towards DaLi and found Martial Aunt Gan. She said that it was best if I stayed with her at her Valley of Ten Thousand Calamities until my master showed up, then we'll all go into DaLi and kill that other woman. But my master wasn't able to make it before Grandma Rui and her gang of servants showed up. You should know all about what happened after that."

She was very tired from talking this much, so she closed eyes and took a break. After a bit, she continued: "At first, I thought you were just like my master said, a liar with no heart and no feelings like all the other men in this world. But after you borrowed Black Rose, you actually came back to warn me about the coming danger, I know that was not easy just by itself. And then when all those servants surrounded me, and even though you didn't know any kungfu, you still tried to protect me. I... I'm not heartless you know, naturally, I was very grateful."

"Uh-huh," Duan Yu mused. "You dragged me around behind your horse, dragged me through water, and slapped me at the slightest provocation, turns out that it was because you were grateful! Wow! Of course! If you weren't grateful, you would have killed me with an arrow a long time ago."

"When you cared for my wounds, you saw my bare back," Mu WanQing continued, "and I saw your bare bottom. I had already figured that I probably have to marry you anyway. And then Divine Croc of the Southern Seas kept on forcing me and I had no choice but to let you see my face." She stopped and turned to look at Duan Yu, her eyes filled with love and tenderness.

"Can it... can it be that she really developed feelings for me?" the realization finally shot through Duan Yu's mind as he said. "So what if you saw my bare... bare that, don't worry about that. Also, you were in danger just then and had no other choice, in that situation you don't have to follow your oath that closely do you?"

"I swore to it, how can it be changed?" Mu WanQing shouted. "Do you think that bare bottom of yours look good or something? It was ugly as death! If you don't want to marry me, then come out and say it. That way I can just kill you right now and not worry about breaking my oath."

Duan Yu didn't know how to respond to that. Suddenly, his belly began hurting again, doubling him over once again.

"Say it, are you or are you not going to marry me?" Mu WanQing demanded.

"My... my belly... belly hurts!" Duan Yu groaned.

"Do you or do you not want to be my husband?"

Figuring that with this pain, he couldn't live much longer anyways, Duan Yu decided that there was no point in hurting her before dying and and causing her great sadness, nodded as much as he can with the pain and replied: "I... I'll marry you."

Mu WanQing's finger had wrapped around the arrow-firing trigger within her sleeve. Hearing him say those words, she was overjoyed, making her face look like a newly blossomed flower. Taking her finger off the trigger, she hugged Duan Yu and smiled.

"Darling, let me rub your tummy for you."

"No, no! We are not married yet!" Duan Yu objected. "Men and women... men and women shouldn't... that is... you shouldn't do this."

"Pei! Then why did you kiss me just then?"

"That's because you were so beautiful that I couldn't help myself. Please forgive me!"

"No need to ask for forgiveness," Mu WanQing smiled even wider. "I liked it too when you kissed me."

"She's so innocent and naive, and it's all real. Not like Madame Zhong's fakery. Zhong Ling's so young that her innocence is real too." Duan Yu mused.

"Oh I know! You are starving, that only makes the pain worse." Mu WanQing continued. "Let me go cut off some meet off of that guy for you."

Before Duan Yu's mind registered what she meant, she stood up using the rock for support and looked as if she was about to walk over to that swordsman whose neck Divine Croc had snapped.

So shocked that he forgot about his belly ache, Duan Yu shouted: "Human flesh is inedible. I would rather die than eat that!"

"Why not? When I was with my master, we ate tiger meat and leopard meat. Are you saying that we shouldn't eat all of them?" Mu WanQing was rather confused.

"Of course you can eat tigers and leopards, but not humans!"

"Is human flesh poisonous? I didn't know anything about that."

"It's not poisonous. It's just that you are human, I'm human, and that guy is human too. We can't eat humans!"

"How come? I saw jackals and wolves eat other jackals and wolves when they were hungry all the time."

"That's right. But if we humans eat human, then aren't we no better than those wolves?" sighed Duan Yu.

Mu WanQing had stayed with her master all her life and never had any meaningful contact with another person. Her master was an eccentric character and never talked to her about the world outside. As a result, she was completely clueless about the rules, etiquette, or morals of the world. So at this point, hearing Duan Yu saying that "humans can't eat humans", she could only stare at him with her elegant eyes in confused trust.

"Killing all those people wasn't right of you either. Confucius wrote: 'Do onto others as you would have do onto you.' If you you don't want to be killed then you shouldn't kill others. If others are in trouble, then you should help them. That's what it means to be human."

"But if I was in trouble, would others come and help me? How come that other than my master and you, everyone else I met want to bully me, harm me, and kill me? If tigers or leopards want to bite me or eat me, I would kill them. If people wanted to kill me, then naturally I would kill them. How is that any different?"

Duan Yu had no answers for her questions. All he could say was: "So you really don't know anything about how the world works."

"You don't know any martial arts, yet you meddle in the matters of the martial world. Seems to me that you don't know that much about how the world works either."

"Can't deny that!" All Duan Yu could do was force a smile and nod in agreement.

Suddenly, Mu WanQing let out a little yelp and jumped into Duan Yu's arms. "He... he's back...."

Duan Yu turned around just in time to see a yellow figure jump up over the edge of the cliff as Divine Croc of the Southern Seas landing on the mountain top.

As soon as he saw Duan Yu, he smiled. "You haven't kowtowed to me and officially become my disciple yet. So I have to be careful. Some shameless dude could come along and steal you from me. Number 1 said that everything world always favors those who make the first move. Only when you actually have the thing you covet should you consider it as yours, else if somebody took it from you, it's much harder to snatch it back. Number 1 is always correct, I can't beat him, so I got to join him. Hey! Kid, get over here and become my disciple!" Divine Croc ranted.

Noticing how he freely admitted that he lost to "Number One" despite being very competitive, Duan Yu was quite surprised. But with Divine Croc's left eye was swollen and the corner of his mouth split open, Duan Yu had to be convinced that it was "Number One" who had done this to him. Knowing that he could not become his disciple, Duan Yu instead decided to try to change the subject and waste time.

"That was Number One who blew the whistle just then wasn't it? Did you guys have a fight?"

"That's right!"

"Then you must have won and beat Number One black and blue, right?"

"No, not at all," Divine Croc violently shook his head. "His martial arts skills are way better than mine. We haven't met in so many years and I figured that even if I couldn't beat him this time and become Number One of the '4 Arch-Villains', I would at least be able to last 100 or 200 moves with him. But who knew that after 3 punches and 2 kicks he had knocked me down for good. So Number One is still his place to take, I'll just settle with being second. But I was still able to land a couple of good kicks on him. He actually said to me: 'Yue Number Three, your kungfu has improved quite a bit.' Number One actually praised my kungfu, and what Number One says is always correct."

"But you are Number Two, not Number Three," Duan Yu pointed out.

"It's been a long time since we met," Divine Croc's face changed color as he replied. "Number One just said it without thinking. He forgot about it."

"But 'what Number One says is always correct.' How could he mistakenly mis-rank you?"

Unfortunately, this seemed to have hit a sensitive spot for Divine Croc as he suddenly howled and shouted in fury: "I'm Number Two, not Number Three. Now get over here, kneel down, and beg to become my disciple. Then I'll pretend not wanting to, and then you beg some more, kowtowing over and over again, forcing to me acquiesce and accept you as a disciple even though I'm really actually happy inside. This is our South Seas Sect's rules, later on when you accept a disciple, you got to do the same thing, don't forget it."

"Can this rule be changed?" asked Duan Yu.

"Of course not!"

"If it is changed, then you are still a tortoise son of a turtle?"

"That's right!"

"This rule is really great, I agree. But you have to be sure not to change it, or else you would be a tortoise son of a turtle then."

"Good, now kneel down and beg me."

"No, I won't kneel down and kowtow to you, nor will I beg to become your disciple."

Divine Croc was so furious that his face turned burnt yellow. He snarled, revealing a mouthful of sharp teeth, as if he was about to pounce onto Duan Yu. "You are not going to kowtow and beg?" He shouted.

"No kowtowing, no begging."

"Then I'm going to snap your neck into two!" Divine Croc shouted as he took a step forward.

"Go ahead and snap. I can't fight back anyway!" Duan Yu replied as Divine Croc grabbed his shirt with his left hand and put his right hand on top of Duan Yu's head. "I can't fight back. What does that make you if you kill me?"

"A tortoise son of a turtle?"

"That's right."

"I can't kill him, and he isn't willing to beg me, what can I do?" Divine Croc was stumped. He look around and suddenly noticed the Mu WanQing's concerned expression. An idea came to him as he scurried over to her and picked her body up by the back of her neck before taking a couple of steps back toward the cliff. Once he had arrived at the edge of the cliff, he took a step back with his left foot but kept his right toe on the edge in a move called "Rooster Stands on One Foot." It looked as if he was about to fall down the cliff along with Mu WanQing as he teetered there on the edge of the cliff.

Not realizing he was playing around with him and genuinely afraid for Mu WanQing's life, Duan Yu shouted: "Careful, stop that! You... let her go!"

"Boy, you are just like me. I have to have you as a disciple! I have to go over to that peak over there to wait for a couple of people..." smiling a sinister smile, Divine Croc paused for a moment to point to a faraway peak before continuing. "So I don't have time to waste here with you. So quickly come and beg to become my disciple, then I'll let your wife go. Otherwise, hehehe! Geh!"

He made a gesture with his hands as if he was snapping Mu WanQing's neck before suddenly turning around and jumping off the cliff. Pressing his right hand against the face of the cliff, he began to make his way down, carrying Mu WanQing with him.

"Hey, hey! Careful!" Duan Yu shouted and ran to the edge of the cliff as fast as he could. Looking down, he saw that Divine Croc had already fell almost 50 meters with Mu WanQing. As soon as Duan Yu sat back down from relief, his belly began hurting again.

Grabbed by the back of her shirt and dropping along with Divine Croc, Mu WanQing noticed that his hand was flat against the face of the cliff. Whenever the speed of their fall became too fast, their bodies would suddenly slow up a bit, as if he was using the power of his palm as a brake. Mu WanQing had no strength at all at this moment, but even if she did, there was no way she was going to struggle to free herself in midair. After a while, she decided to just close her eyes all together. After what seemed like forever, she felt her body suddenly bounce upward, signaling that they have landed. Not hesitating for even a moment, Divine Croc began to walk as soon as he landed. He was about average height, and with Mu WanQing being a rather tall woman, the two of them were about the same height if lined up next to one another. However, Divine Croc was carrying her like a baby, as if she weighed nothing at all. Walking swiftly through the rock filled, foggy valley, he made his way out in no time at all.

Upon reaching the end of the valley, he finally turned to Mu WanQing. "You are my disciple's wife, so I won't trouble you just yet. But if that boy doesn't become my disciple, hehe, then he won't be my disciple anymore, and you won't be my disciple's wife anymore. When the Divine Croc sees a pretty young girl, he has always first enjoyed her then killed her without exception," he said in a rather loud voice.

Mu WanQing involuntarily shuddered. "My husband don't know any martial arts, how is he suppose to get down from the cliff? If he was too worried about me and accidentally slips on his way down, where would you go find another disciple? Where will you go and find another talent like him?"

"A very good point. I didn't think about how he's suppose to get down," Divine Croc nodded in agreement before suddenly letting out a drawn out howl.

Soon, 2 men wearing yellow appeared on the mountain side and bowed to Divine Croc. "Go to the top of that cliff over there and look after that boy there. If he says he want to become my disciple, then carry him down. If he refuses, then just stay there by his side until he does, but don't hurt him. He's my hand picked successor, and definitely do not let anyone else take him in as a disciple!" Divine Croc instructed.

"Yes sir!"

After leaving his instructions, Divine Croc picked up Mu WanQing and began walking off again. Mu WanQing was slightly relieved, knowing she would be safe until whenever Duan Yu arrives. But her darling was stubborn as a bull and probably would rather die before becoming the disciple of someone as cruel and vicious as this Divine Croc.

"His feelings towards me seems to be very chivalrous but not loving. He probably wouldn't become this evil man's disciple just for me," Mu WanQing thought to herself. "Ay! I just wish that he's safe and sound and wouldn't fall off of the cliff. I wonder if his belly is still hurting?"

Like her emotions and thoughts, Divine Croc was carrying her up and down as he made his way through the mountains. This man's stamina was truly astounding, as soon as he made it up a peak he would immediately walk back down without the slightest pause to rest. After making his way over 4 peaks in a row, he finally stopped atop of the highest peak around.

The first thing he did after he put Mu WanQing back down was pull his pants open and take a piss at the bottom of a tree. Mu WanQing, disgusted, immediately walked to a distance and pulled out her veil. Afraid that he might lose his control and throw all that master-disciple thing out of the window if he looked at her one too many times, she put on her veil, sat down on the side of a rather large rock, and tried to get some much needed rest.

After finishing his business and readjusting his pants, Divine Croc walked up to her.

"I see that you have put on your veil. That's probably for the best, or if I look at your a bit more, something might happen," he commented.

"Well, at least you still can tell what is right and wrong," Mu WanQing mused.

"Why aren't you talking to me? And why are you pretending to be asleep? Think you are too good to talk to me?"

Mu WanQing shook her head and opened her eyes. "Mr. Yue, what's your given name? In the future when my husband become your disciple, I have to know your given name at least."

"My name is Yue... Yue.... Oh dammit! My dad picked my name for me and it's a terrible name! My dad did not do a single thing well in his life that bitch son of a tortoise!"

Mu WanQing almost cracked up at that remark: "If your father is a bitch son of a tortoise, what does that make you? Cursing at even your father, I guess you really don't have any manners at all." But then she was reminded that she didn't even know who her father was at all, even then her master told her that her father was a traitorous man. Realizing that she was not necessarily much better off than Divine Croc, she fell silent in sadness.

He paced in one direction for a bit, then turned around and paced back in the other direction, not letting Mu WanQing one moment of peace. Tired of watching him just walk back and forth, Mu WanQing closed her eyes. But she could still here his footsteps pacing around endlessly.

"You just finished climbing several mountain peaks, aren't you tired?" She asked him. "Why don't you sit down and rest a bit?"

"Who asked you? Your daddy here just don't like sitting!"

Mu WanQing had no choice but to try and ignore him. Immediately her thoughts went to Duan Yu, leaving her heart warm and sweet one moment but cold and bitter another.

Suddenly, the sounds of crying gently drifted through the air, the sound was unspeakably sad and wretched. Faintly, it sounded like a woman was crying: "My baby, my baby!"

Divine Croc spat in the general direction of the sound. "Pei! She's mourning again!" He commented before shouting. "What are you mourning for? I've been waiting here forever!"

"My baby! Your mother misses you so!" The voice seemed to continue on.

"Is that your mother?" Mu WanQing was greatly confused by this turn of events.

"Like hell she's my mom! What's wrong with you?" Divine Croc looked insulted at the mere question. "That bitch right there is 'No Evil Left Undone' Second Madame Yie. The word 'evil' is second in her nickname. One of these days, I'm going to exchange my nickname, 'Vicious Demon Evil Fiend', with hers!"

Mu WanQing suddenly had an epiphany: "So if the word 'evil' comes second in the nickname, it means that person is the second among the 'Arch-Villains'."

"What what is the number one's nickname? What is number 4's?"

"Can you stop asking me question? Your daddy here don't want to talk to you anymore!" Divine Croc impatiently replied.

"Number One's nickname is 'Evil Overflowing the Cup', Number Four is called 'To the Core Evil'." A serene female voice suddenly answered.

{I know the nicknames are a little bad, but I'm working on it, and it's hard to make the word evil appear in the right places. I'm open to suggestions. :o)}

Mu WanQing was shocked by the speed of Second Madame Yie, the sound of her voice hadn't faded yet and she had already quietly made it up the mountain. Immediately Mu WanQing turned to get a good look at her. She was wearing a light green dress. Her hair was long and dancing in the wind. She looked about 40 and her face graceful and elegant. But both side of her face had 3 blood red scars that went from the bottom of her eyes all the way down to her chin as if somebody had just scratched her face open. In her arms was a 2 or 3 year old baby, a cute, chubby looking boy.

Mu WanQing had thought that this "No Evil Left Undone" Second Madame Yie would have been a terrifying woman because she was ranked ahead of Divine Croc. But she turned out to be quite good looking. In her surprise, Mu WanQing had to look her over again. Second Madam Yie shot her a sweet smile, but it caused Mu WanQing's entire body to shudder, for her smiled seemed to hide beneath it an infinite amount of suffering and sadness. Almost starting to cry right then and there, Mu WanQing immediately looked away.

"Third Sister, why isn't Number One and Number Four here yet?" asked Divine Croc.

"From the beat-up look on your face, it's obvious that you've just been taught a lesson by Number One, and yet you are thick skinned enough to ask why Number One isn't here yet?" Second Madame Yie quietly answered. "And besides, you are obviously third, yet you are so determined to get ahead of me. If you call me 'Third Sister' one more time, your older sister is going to have to get serious."

"Then get serious! What do I care?" Divine Croc angrily answered. "Do you want a fight?"

"If you want to fight, then I guess I'll keep you company then," Second Madame Yie answered with a slight smile.

"Mommy! Mommy! I want my mommy!" The kid in her arms suddenly began to ball.

"Good boy, I'm your mommy, stop crying." Second Madame Yie tried to console the boy.

But the boy just began to cry even louder: "I want my mommy! I want my mommy! You are not my mommy!"

Second Madam Yie began to rock him in her arms and start singing a little lullaby. "Rock rock rock, rock to grandma's bridge, grandma calls me angel...."

But the kid wouldn't stop crying. Divine Croc was getting really annoyed listening to this.

"Why are you trying to console the kid? If you going to kill him, then you might as well hurry up and kill him."

"... a bag of candy, a bag of fruit, eat a bag and keep a bag." Second Madame Yie kept on singing with a smile on her face.

Mu WanQing was shaking uncontrollably as the more she thought about what Divine Croc said the more frightened she became. According to Divine Croc, Second Madame Yie was going to kill the child, she was furious and afraid at the same time. Second Madame Yie endlessly tried to comfort the kid with another lullaby: "Good kid, mommy's good little boy, good little boys go to sleep soon." Her voice was filled with warmth and care that Mu WanQing could not bring herself to believe what Divine Croc just said.

"You kill a kid every day but yet you still put on this little act every time, have you no shame?" Divine Croc was furious.

"Don't be so loud, you are going to scare my little baby," Second Master Yie quietly told him.

Divine Croc suddenly reached out and tried to grab the kid, wanting to fling him to his death so he doesn't have to listen to another minute of his crying. But even though he was fast, Second Madame Yie was faster still. Her body stepped aside like a ghost or apparition and Divine Croc's move came up empty.

"Ai-yo! Third Brother, why are you trying to bully my baby for no reason?"

"I want to throw that little devil as far as I can so he will shut up!"

"My little darling baby, mommy loves you. Don't be afraid of your ugly monstrous third uncle, he can't beat your mommy." Second Madame Yie softly tried to comfort the kid. "You are so cute, mommy has to play around with you for the night before killing you. Your mommy can't bring herself to part with you yet."

Mu WanQing almost threw up after hearing that. "This Second Madame Yie should indeed be ranked ahead of Divine Croc. This Yue Number Thew is stuck being 'Vicious Demon Evil Fiend,' he's not going to get past her for the rest of his life!" She thought.

After failing on his first attempt, it seemed as if Divine Croc knew that any other attempt would just be futile as he just paced back and forth, cursing fiercely at her under his breath. Suddenly, he shouted: "Get the hell out of here! Where is that kid? Why isn't he here to ask me to become his master?"

Two yellow shirt men slowly stepped out from behind a rock and stopped as far away from Divine Croc as they could. It was the 2 men that Divine Croc instructed to look after Duan Yu.

"Your... your humble servant climbed up that cliff, but... but he's not there. We can't... can't find him anywhere." One of them stuttered out.

Mu WanQing was shocked: "Did... did he fall off the cliff?"

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To Be Continued...

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