Page 5 of 5 FirstFirst 12345
Results 81 to 95 of 95

Thread: Dagger Lee unabridged

  1. #81
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 79 - A Righteous and Loyal Comraderie

    GongSun Yu let out another roar as he crawled on top of his body, "We must have been wrong, he definitely didn't ..."

    His voice died out again.

    Another spear had been plunged into GongSun Yu's back!

    The spear was pulled out. Under the dim light from the lanterns on the walls, there appeared to be a hazy mist in the tunnel.

    A light pink mist.

    A mist of blood!

    Where twenty six people originally stood, sixteen had already fallen.

    This bloody massacre didn't seem to be over yet. The stronger and weaker sides seemed to be even further apart now.

    A medicine peddler who had about six wounds on him said in a husky voice, "Tie ChuanJia is already dead, let us leave this place!"

    There were only three of them left in this losing battle. There really was no way that they could hold off any longer.

    One of them who wielded an axe in his hand, a 'Mt. Hua Splitting' axe, gritted his teeth and said, "Second brother, should we retreat?"

    The blind man replied, "Retreat? The 'Eight Righteous Ones of the Central Plains' would rather die before retreating. I'll strike down whoever mentions the word 'retreat' again!"

    One of the men in yellow laughed and said, "Good! You've got some guts! Then today let us deliver on your death wish ..."

    His voice was suddenly cut short as well. His eyes bulged out like a dead fish.

    He died rather quietly, only a *GAAK* *GAAK* sound came from his throat.

    His breath hadn't stopped, but he just couldn't finish his sentence. He tried with all his strength but not a single word would come out. Because protruding from his throat was what appeared to be a dagger.

    A dagger seven inches long:

    Little Li's flying dagger!

    All movement suddenly stopped, everyone's eyes were fixed on that dagger!

    No one knew where in the world that dagger had come from, but every single one of them knew who had arrived.

    Everyone in that underground tunnel had their mouths drop wide open.

    Li XunHuan was standing right before them.

    But no one dared to turn their head to look at him, they feared that once they turned their head, that soul-searching life-taking dagger would suddenly appear in their throats.

    They were all the most loyal and accomplished members of the 'Gold Currency Union', not a single one of them was a coward that feared for his life. But by now, they were all exhausted and weak, they had seen too much death and too much bloodshed.

    This had already sapped them of much of their courage, and in addition, 'Little Li's flying dagger' was renowned throughout the world not just as a dagger, but as an almost demonic entity!

    Now those four words became even more closely tied with the meaning of death.

    Or perhaps only now did they truly understand the meaning of death.

    The dead body of one of their companions laid at their feet.

    Just a blink of an eye ago, he was still a living breathing human being.

    Then, that dreadful dagger instantly turned him into a dead corpse.

    His life suddenly became completely meaningless, before he could ever realize it.

    Nothing else was more terrifying than this suddden change, what they feared was not death, but this horrifying apprehension.

    The blind man suddenly said, "Li TanHua?"

    Although he couldn't see a single thing nor did he hear any sound whatsoever, he could somehow sense Li XunHuan's presence, he could sense a terrifying killer aura.

    "Yes." Li XunHuan replied.

    The blind man let out a long sigh and slowly sat down.

    Jin FengBai and the woodcutter followed as he did and slowly sat down as well. They sat down right in the pool of blood where GongSun Yu and Tie ChuanJia's bodies laid. By the looks of their eyes, they had seemingly sat down in another world.

    In that world, there was no vengeance and there was no suffering.

    Li XunHuan slowly walked over in front of the men in yellow.

    His hands were empty, no dagger was in sight.

    But it seemed as if there was a dagger in his eyes.

    He stared at them and asked, "Where is the person that they brought with them?"

    The men in yellow were are staring at their own feet.

    Li XunHuan sighed and slowly said, "I don't want to force you, but I hope you all won't force me to either."

    One of the men in yellow who stood across from him, whose face was full of cold sweat and whose body was trembling, suddenly asked, "Are you looking for Hunchback Sun?"

    "Yes." Li XunHuan responded.

    That man in yellow suddenly had a weird smile on his face and said loudly, "Fine! I'll take you to find him, just follow me!"

    His weapon was a tiger-head hook, after that sentence was finished, his hand raised up. The tip of the hook penetrated into his own throat.

    He could no longer withstand that horrifying apprehension. Death became his quickest way of escape.

    As Li XunHuan watched his body fall to the floor, he slowly clenched his fists.

    "Hunchback Sun was already dead!"

    The death of that man in yellow was his reply!

    But what about Lin ShiYin?

    A hint of fear suddenly appeared in Li XunHuan's eyes. His eyes slowly moved up from the corpse as his pupils contracted.

    Then, he suddenly heard Tie ChuanJia's voice. Sweat and blood was all over his face and covered his eyes. He could barely see and panted heavily and said, "Yi MingTang, Second Brother Yi ..."

    The blind man whose expression was usually like stone started to twinge, he bit down on his teeth and answered, "I am here."

    "Has ... has my debt been repaid?" Tie ChuanJia said.

    "Your debt has been repaid." Yi MingTang said.

    "There is one more thing that I want to say." Tie ChuanJia said.

    "Speak." Yi MingTang said.

    "Although I have wronged Brother Weng, I never betrayed him, I only ..." Tie ChuanJia said.

    Yi MingTang interrupted him and said, "You don't have to say anymore, I understand."

    He really did understand.

    A person who betrayed his friends would never sacrifice his own life in such a situation.

    Not only did Yi MingTang understand this, Jin FengBai and the woodcutter understood this as well.

    It was a pity that they all realized too late.

    Tears started to form in Yi MingTang's eyes, eys that had been blind for so many years.

    Li XunHuan saw it, he saw it very clearly.

    It was the first time that he realized that blind people were able to shed tears as well.

    Warm tears were already flowing from his eyes.

    Warm tears that fell onto the cold face of Tie ChuanJia. He knelt down and lightly wiped off the blood and sweat from Tie ChuanJia's face.

    Tie ChuanJia finally opened his eyes, as soon as he saw Li XunHuan, he exclaimed, "Young master! Young master ... you really came!"

    He was overcome with joy, he struggled to stand but kept collapsing back to the floor.

    Li XunHuan knelt down beside him and said, "I have come, we will have plenty of time to talk later."

    Tie ChuanJia struggled to shake his head as he said with a painful smile, "I can die now with no regrets, there is nothing else left for me to say."

    Li XunHuan said with tears in his eyes, "But there are still things that you must say. The fact that you hadn't betrayed Brother Weng, why don't you clear everything up? Why did you avoid it for so long?"

    "I avoided it not for my own sake." Tie ChuanJia said.

    "Then for whom?" Li XunHuan asked.

    Tie ChuanJia slowly shook his head from side to side.

    His arms and legs were convulsing in pain, but the expression on his face remained calm and at ease, a gleeful smile formed from the corner of his lips.

    His death was very peaceful.

    One of the most difficult things to do in life is to die a peaceful death!

    Li XunHuan knelt motionlessly beside him, his entire body fell numb.

    He obviously knew who Tie ChuanJia had died for.

    He had most likely arrived at Happy Cloud Manor before Li XunHuan and discovered ShangGuan JinHong's plans to ambush him and had followed them to this underground tunnel. If for any reason he knew that Li XunHuan was in danger, there wasn't a place that Tie ChuanJia wouldn't go to help him.

    But how did he uncover ShangGuan JinHong's plot?

    And what were the secrets between him and Weng TianJie, Brother Weng? That even in death he was unwilling to disclose?

    "Just what are you hiding? Although you can die with no regrets, how can I ever rest peacefully not knowing how you came to this end?" Li XunHuan said sullenly.

    "I think I know what he was hiding." Jin FengBai suddenly shouted.

    "You ... you know?" Li XunHuan said.

    Jin FengBai's face had always been dark and foreboding but now it was sickly green.

    He gritted his teeth and said, "The friendship and loyalty that Brother Weng showed towards others was widely known, I'm sure you've heard about this as well."

    "I have." Li XunHuan said.

    "As long as it was from a friend, there wasn't a single request that he'd deny. And because of this, his expenses were always very great. But he wasn't like you, he didn't have a father who was an Imperial Magistrate." Jin FengBai said.

    Li XunHuan smiled.

    "So he was always in poverty. Somone who lived in poverty, but had many friends, and also demanded respect, would be forced to think up other ways to repay his debts." Jin FengBai said.

    "Are you saying ... that Brother Weng engaged in illegal businesses?" the woodcutter said.

    "Right, I had accidentally overheard about this. But I could never bear to reveal the truth, because everything that Brother Weng had done was out of necessity." Jin FengBai said.

    He suddenly continued loudly, "But everyone who Brother Weng had taken advantage of must have had it coming to them and probably deserved it! Although what he did was take advantage and rip people off, it was never anything that went against his morals or his conscience."

    "And what relation does Tie ChuanJia have with this matter?" Yi MingTang asked.

    "After many deals, people had started investigating his business dealings. One of Tie ChuanJia's close friends turned out to be the inspector that was given this case. The two of them had long suspected Brother Weng, but weren't certain of his guilt.

    "So that's probably why Tie ChuanJia befriended Brother Weng, so that he could investigate further and act upon finding evidence." the woodcutter said.

    "I think that's what most likely happened." Jin FengBai said.

    He continued, "Tie ChuanJia was unwilling to reveal this because Brother Weng had always been good to him. He soon came to regard Brother Weng as a good friend, there was no way that he'd reveal this to ruin Brother Weng's reputation after his death. So he took all the blame and false accusations upon himself. He really wasn't running away this whole time for his own sake."

    "But why haven't you ever told us about this?" Yi MingTang said.

    "Me ... ? How would you expect me to reveal this to everyone? Brother Weng had always been so generous and kind towards me. Even Tie ChuanJia was unwilling to reveal this, how could I ever bear to do it?" Jin FengBai said.

    "Great! You really are a true friend of Brother Weng's. A true friend!" Yi MingTang said.

    There was a cold smile on his face but his entire body was trembling.

    "I know that it was really unfair to Tie ChuanJia but I had no other choice, I really had no other choice ..." Jin FengBai said.

    His voice kept lowering as he spoke, he suddenly picked up a sabre, it was the same sabre that had just taken Tie ChuanJia's life. He turned it towards himself and plunged it into his chest at exactly the same place that the sabre had stabbed into Tie ChuanJia.

    Although he was writhing in pain, he had the same type of smile on his face that Tie ChuanJia had earlier, "I really owed him too much, but now, at least that debt has been repaid in full!"

    He died very peacefully as well ...

    One of the most difficult things to do in life is to die a peaceful death.

    Yi MingTang suddenly started laughing madly, "Excellent! You were brave enough to reveal the truth, and brave enough to repay this debt, you really are a true friend of mine! At least we 'Eight Righteous Ones of the Central Plains' never do anything that would disgrace ourselves!"

    His laughter started to sound like a weeping cry.

    The woodcutter suddenly knelt in front of Tie ChuanJia's body and bowed once, then he turned to Yi MingTang and said, "Second brother, I will go ahead first."

    Yi MingTang's laughter abruptly stopped as he changed immediately to a cold and calm demeanor and said, "Okay, go on ahead."

    "I'll be waiting for you." the woodcutter said.

    His axe rose up, blood sprayed across the floor, he died even faster, and even more peacefully.

    If he hadn't seen it with his own eyes, Li XunHuan would've never believed that there people who were this unafraid of death.

    There wasn't a trace of emotion on Yi MingTang's face as he turned to Li XunHuan and said, "I haven't left yet, because there is still something I must tell you."

    Li XunHuan could only nod his head.

    "You should've figured out by now that we had been hiding out here for a very long time, because we expected Tie ChuanJia to return here sooner or later, so there is much that we know about what happened." Yi MingTang said.

    He slowly continued, "We knew about ShangGuan JinHong's plot from the very beginning. Long Xiao4Yun knew about it as well. I had always found it weird why you would befriend such a person."

    Of course Li XunHuan had nothing to say to that either.

    "Tie ChuanJia found out about this trap from Long Xiao4Yun, he had purposely leaked this information to him because he wanted to send Tie ChuanJia to his death. But he didn't anticipate that we would have followed him here because there was no way that we would allow Tie ChuanJia to die in the hands of someone else." Yi MingTang said.

    He continued, "But concerning Madame ... Miss Lin ShiYin, she did not fall into harm's way, nor did she fall into ShangGuan JinHong's hands. If you pay a visit to Happy Cloud Manor, you will definitely be able to see her there."

    Li XunHuan felt a warm surging feeling in his chest, was it gratitude? Or was it happiness?

    "And now all enmities concerning us eight have been settled, I can only hope that you will bury all of us together. And if anyone should ask about the 'Eight Righteous Ones of the Central Plains', I only hope that you will tell them that although we had made mistakes during our lives, that we tried our best to right our wrongs in death." Yi MingTang said.

    The remaining men in yellow had already quietly slipped away. Although Li XunHuan had seen them leave, he didn't bother to stop them.

    Nor did he bother to stop Yi MingTang.

    Because he knew that Yi MingTang really would not be able to live on.

    As long as a person could die with his mind at ease, what else could he ask for?

    Death meant nothing to them.

    But now as Li XunHuan looked at the floor that was littered with corpses, he couldn't help but start shuddering, because he realized the brutality and horror of 'vengeance'.

    No matter how deep that vengeance was, it had all been settled now.

    Yi MingTang was perfectly correct, although they had made mistakes during their lives, they were able to die with honor, dignity, and a clear conscience.

    There are few people in this world who are able to die as they did.

    Li XunHuan's arms and legs were cold to the point of trembling now, the burning in his chest felt like fire.

    He fell to his knees in a pool of their blood.

    It was the blood of true men!

    He calmly knelt there, he preferred the company of these dead men much more than the devious smiles of the living.

    "A real man is unshaken by joy in life and unshaken by fear in death!" If a person can really die without regrets, then what is so frightening about death?

    But it really is hard to die in such a way!

    Sun XiaoHong hadn't stepped foot inside that place the entire time. It wasn't that she was afraid, but she couldn't bear to witness such a gory scene. She realized that men really were different from women.

    She realized that being a woman was a blessing in its own way.



    In the small shop, there was a single light and two people.

    The light was very dim, their mood was even dimmer ...

    The light lay in front of Li XunHuan. Wine also lay in front of Li XunHuan. But it seemed like he didn't even have the strength to lift his cup, all he could do was stare idly into it.

    The flame danced and flickered.

    After who knows how long, Li XunHuan finally let out a sigh and said, "Let's go."

    "I ... am I coming with you?" Sun XiaoHong asked.

    "We came together so of course we'll leave together." Li XunHuan responded.

    "We're leaving? But aren't you going to pay a visit to Happy Cloud Manor?" Sun XiaoHong asked.

    Li XunHuan shook his head.

    "But wasn't the whole reason we came for was to go to Happy Cloud Manor?" Sun XiaoHong asked.

    "There's no need to now." Li XunHuan replied.

    "Why not?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    He stared into the light and said, "Yi MingTang assured me that she is safe, that is enough for me."

    "And you're relieved by simply hearing his words?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "He is the type of person who is definitely trustworthy." Li XunHuan said.

    She blinked and asked, "But ... don't you want to see her?"

    Li XunHuan fell silent and then slowly answered, "Seeing her will be like not seeing her. Since she is safe, there's no need for me to go."

    "But since you're already here, would it hurt to just see her?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    He fell silent again, then suddenly smiled and said, "I suddenly feel happy again. Since my mood has come back, it makes no difference whether I see her or not."

    Sun XiaoHong sighed and smiled, "You really are a strange person, other people can never understand the things that you do."

    "You'll understand sooner or later." Li XunHuan replied.

    She stared dumbly at him for a few moments before saying, "But you should at least stay to ensure that they get a proper burial."

    "They can wait, but ShangGuan JinHong can't." Li XunHuan said.

    He smiled a very bittersweet smile and continued, "Dead people are much more patient than the living, wouldn't you say?"

    End of Chapter 79

  2. #82
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 80 - A Terrible Mistake

    "So you're not as loyal as I had thought. Well at least more loyal to the living than to the dead." Sun XiaoHong said jestingly.

    "When did we start heading out yesterday?" Li XunHuan suddenly asked.

    "It was nighttime, about the same time as it is now." Sun XiaoHong replied.

    "And at what time did we arrive here today?" Li XunHuan asked.

    "Late afternoon, it wasn't yet dark outside." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "And how did we get here?" Li XunHuan said.

    "We rode a carriage for quite some time, then traveled by foot until this morning, and afterwards we went on horseback." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "So even if we traveled the same way as we had before, we still wouldn't be able to get back before late afternoon." Li XunHuan said.

    "Right." Sun XiaoHong replied.

    "But now, we haven't slept for quite some time. We won't have as much energy as we had yesterday, so there's no way we can travel at a faster pace than yesterday." Li XunHuan said.

    "But yesterday I wasn't quite able to keep up with you. No wonder grandpa had said that your speed is just as incredible as your dagger." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "So even if we left now, I may still not be able to make it back in time to duel with ShangGuan JinHong" Li XunHuan said.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly fell silent.

    He lifted his head, looked at her and said, "You should be encouraging me to leave now, you know that I can't miss this meeting."

    Sun XiaoHong turned away and bit down on her lips as if she was trying to hide from his gaze.

    After a while, she said softly, "I only want you to promise me one thing."

    "What is it?" Li XunHuan said.

    "This time let's only go by carriage, lets not go on foot or on horseback." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "You want me to rest on the way." Li XunHuan said.

    "Yes. If you don't rest now, you'll be exhausted when you finally do see ShangGuan JinHong. You can't really duel with him if you're knocked out on the floor." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Li XunHuan smiled and said, "Okay, I'll listen to you, we'll take a carriage."

    Sun XiaoHong immediately lit up with happiness, "We can bring wine onto the carriage as well. If you can't fall asleep, I'll drink with you along the way."

    "Once I start drinking, eventually I'll be able to fall asleep." Li XunHuan said.

    "Great, as long as you can get some rest during carriage ride, ShangGuan JinHong won't be a match for you." Sun XiaoHong said with a smile.

    "You really have a lot of faith in me." Li XunHuan responded with a smile.

    She looked into his eyes and said, "Of course I have faith in you, otherwise why would I ..."

    Her face started to blush, she suddenly ran out and said gleefully, "I'll go look for a carriage while you prepare the wine. And if there's time, you should go see her, I promise that I won't be jealous."

    Her ponytail flew up and down as she ran and within a few moments she was out of sight.

    Li XunHuan saw her off before slowly standing up and walking out of the door himself.

    He looked up high, above the walls was a small room in one corner.

    The light in that small room was lit.

    What about the person inside?

    Was she quietly sewing clothes for her beloved son?

    The extent of a mother's love was like an unending thread of string.

    But it still wasn't as lengthy as loneliness, nothing in this world was as lengthy as loneliness.

    One year after another, one mouth after another. A thread that could not be sewn. A loneliness that could not be mended.

    She had already buried her own life, that small room was her grave.

    A person ... a woman ... without youth, without love, without joy, what did she live for?

    "ShiYin ... ShiYin ... you have suffered way too much."

    Li XunHuan suddenly bent down and started coughing, coughing out blood!

    How could he not want to see her?

    Although his body was standing still, his heart had already flown into that small room.

    Although his heart had flown into that room, his body was still standing right there.

    He didn't dare to go, he just couldn't go. Even if it were to be the last time he'd ever see her, he still just couldn't go ... seeing her would be like not seeing her. And what could he do even if he did see her?

    She was no longer his, she had a husband, a son, and her own world.

    She was really in an entirely separate world.

    She used to be his, but now he couldn't even cast a single eye on her.

    Li XunHuan wiped the blood off his lips and tried to swallow back down the blood in his mouth.

    Even the blood tasted bitter, extremely bitter.

    "ShiYin ... ShiYin, I'll be satisfied no matter what just as long as you're safe and at peace. Whether in hell or in heaven, the day will come when we can see each other again."

    But was Lin ShiYin really at peace?

    Blistering cold wind, he looked even more emaciated than a chrysantheum flower.

    Li XunHuan stood lonesomely in the western wind. Was he hoping that the wind would carry him away?

    After some time Sun XiaoHong had returned. She looked at him foolishly and said, "You ... you didn't go see her?"

    Li XunHuan shook his head and said, "Did you find a carriage?"

    "The carriage is waiting just ahead, if you're really not going to see her, then let's get going." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Let's go!" Li XunHuan replied.

    The carriage rocked back and forth along the road, wine wavered back and forth inside his cup.

    It was finely aged wine.

    The carriage seemed even older than the wine, while the horses seemed even older than the carriage.

    Li XunHuan wagged his head and said with a smile, "If only the horse pulling this carriage were Lord Guan's 'Red Hare', then this carriage would instantly become an antique. It's pretty amazing that you were able to find such a carriage."

    Sun XiaoHong couldn't contain her laughter, she lifted up her chin and said, "You're not pleased with my arrangements?"

    "No, no, I'm satisfied, very satisfied." Li XunHuan said.

    He closed his eyes and said, "As soon as I stepped foot into this carriage, I suddenly remembered something from a very long time ago."

    "Oh? What did you remember?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I remembered a wooden horse that I used to play with when I was younger, it feels like I'm rocking back and forth the same way on this carriage." Li XunHuan said.

    Before he could finish his sentence, he felt something go into his mouth.

    "After you finish eating these dates, hurry up and get some rest." Sun XiaoHong said with a smile.

    "If I really could fall asleep and never wake, it would be pretty nice, unfortunately ..." Li XunHuan said.

    Sun XiaoHong cut him off and said, "I got this carriage because I wanted you to be able to sleep well. As long as you can fall asleep, we can swich carriages in the morning."

    Li XunHuan downed his cup of wine and said, "If that's the case then I'll drink a few more cups so I can sleep soundly."

    The wine in his cup swung back and forth, her ponytail wagged back and forth as well.

    Her eyes were warm and radiant like the starlight outside the carriage.

    The starlight was like a dream.

    Li XunHuan was falling into inebriation.

    On such a beautiful night, with such a bueatiful companion, how could he not fall into a drunken stupor?

    Since he was drunk, how could he not fall asleep?

    Li XunHuan leaned to one side and lifted up his legs onto the seat of the carriage and mumbled, "Sages and heroes were always plagued with loneliness and had nothing but alcohol to keep them company ... but isn't drinking the night away just as depressing?"

    Everything fell quiet, soon there was only silence.

    He had finally fallen asleep.

    Sun XiaoHong stared at him quietly. After a long while, she reached out and ran her hand through his hair and said softly, "Sleep, sleep peacefully. After you wake up, all your sadness and trouble will be a thing of the past. And when that time comes, I won't let you drink so much anymore."

    Her eyes started to glow brightly, they filled with joyous expectations.

    She was still young.

    Youths are always optimistic about the world, they assume that things will always go the way they planned.

    She didn't understand that the world simply didn't work that way. The way things turn out are always far off from what we expect. If she knew just how far off her expectations were, her clothes would be soaked with tears.

    The carriage driver was leisurely sipping his wine as well.

    He didn't seem to be in a hurry.

    Because the young lady that called for the carriage had instructed him so!

    "Take your time on the road, we are not in a rush to get anywhere."

    The carriage driver smiled to himself. If he were riding in a carriage with his sweetheart, he wouldn't be in a hurry to get anywhere either.

    He was really envious of Li XunHuan, he felt that Li XunHuan was really lucky.

    But if he knew the kind of situation that Li XunHuan and Sun XiaoHong were in, he probably wouldn't be able to swallow that wine in his cup.

    The next day had arrived.

    When Li XunHuan woke up, sunlight had already flooded through the carriage window.

    He didn't know how he had fallen asleep for so long. Was he simply tired? Or was it the wine?

    Li XunHuan picked up his cup and sniffed it but slowly put it back down.

    The carriage was still shaking back and forth as it rolled down the road. It was moving very slowly, stopping here and there, as if the driver was slowly dozing off.

    Sun XiaoHong had fallen asleep on his lap.

    Her long hair flowed down his legs like water.

    Li XunHuan stuck his head out the window but couldn't see the carriage's shadow.

    The sun was directly overhead.

    After some distance there was a stone tablet by the side of the road that had the name of the village ahead.

    The time that he had agreed to meet with ShangGuan JinHong was fast approaching, a little less than six hours away.

    But they were only half way there.

    Li XunHuan suddenly felt his hands go cold as they started to tremble.

    There were times when he was worried, sad, or troubled, and there were times when he was happy, but rarely was he ever angry.

    Right now he wasn't quite angry, but very close to it.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly awoke and felt him shaking. She looked up and saw the angry expression on his face, it was an expression that she had never seen before.

    She lowered her head, her eyes already turning red, and said, "Are you upset at me?"

    Li XunHuan's mouth was shut, shut very tightly.

    "I knew that you would be upset at me but I still would've done the same thing. I don't care if you scold me or hit me, just as long as you understand that I did this for your own good." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Li XunHuan let out a long sigh. His entire body relaxed, his heart softened as well.

    What Sun XiaoHong did really was for his sake.

    What did she do wrong? As long as she whole-heartedly wanted the best for him, how could he blame her?

    "I understand how you feel, I don't blame you. But why can't you try to understand how I feel as well?" Li XunHuan said.

    "You ... you really don't think I understand how you feel?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "If you understood how I felt, you would know that even if you did stop me from meeting with ShangGuan JinHong this time, what about in the future? I have to confront him sooner or later, it could even be tomorrow." Li XunHuan said.

    "By tomorrow, everything will be different." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "What will be different by tomorrow?" Li XunHuan said.

    "By tomorrow ShangGuan JinHong will already be dead, he probably won't live past tonight." Sun XiaoHong said.

    The way she spoke was particularly strange, as if she was very confident in what she said.

    Li XunHuan couldn't figure out why she sounded so confident so he thought for awhile.

    "No one will blame you for not showing up today. Besides, it was all ShangGuan JinHong's doing. If he didn't force you to go to Happy Cloud Manor, then you wouldn't have been this late." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Li XunHuan was still lost in thought, but the expression on his face slowly changed.

    Sun XiaoHong's mood seemed to lighten as she leaned beside him and said, "Once ShangGuan JinHong is dead, no one will say that ..."

    Li XunHuan suddenly cut in and said, "Did your grandfather tell you to do this?"

    Sun XiaoHong blinked and said jokingly, "Well, maybe it was, maybe it wasn't."

    "Is he going in my place to confront ShangGuan JinHong?" Li XunHuan said.

    "Correct, you should know that once ShangGuan JinHong sees my grandpa, it'll be like a mouse seeing a cat. I think he is the only person in this world who can deal with ShangGuan JinHong." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She held his hand and wanted to continue on but suddenly fell silent because she felt that his hands were colder than ice.

    If a person's heart wasn't filled with fear, why would their hands turn this cold?

    But what was he afraid of?

    Seeing the expression on his face she was afraid to ask.

    "Did you grandfather want to go himself, or was it you who had asked him to?" Li XunHuan questioned her.

    "Does ... does it make a difference?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Yes, it makes a big difference." Li XunHuan said.

    "It was I who asked him to go, because when dealing with people like ShangGuan JinHong, it doesn't matter who kills him. It doesn't necessarily have to be you." Sun XiaoHong said.

    He nodded his head as if he was in agreement with what she said, but there was an entirely different expression on his face.

    Not only did he look frightened, but extremely grieved as well.

    Sun XiaoHong couldn't help but ask, "Are you worried?"

    Li XunHuan didn't have to answer, his expression answered for him.

    "I don't quite understand what you're worrid about ... is it grandpa?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    Li XunHuan finally sighed and said in a low tone of voice, "I'm worried for you."

    "You're worrid for me? Why?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Everybody makes mistakes in life. There are some mistakes we make that can be fixed but there are others that are forever irretractable." Li XunHuan said.

    Now there was not only grief in his eyes, but a deep feeling of pain as well.

    He looked straight at her and continued, "If you make a mistake that can never be fixed, no matter what your intentions were, you'll have to carry this burden for the rest of your life. Even if other people forgive you, you will never be able to forgive yourself. It really is a horrible feeling."

    He understood this feeling very well.

    Because of one mistake that he made in his life, he had to pay a terrible price.

    She looked back at him and suddenly felt a strange foreboding feeling, "Are you worried that I am going to do something wrong?"

    After a long pause, Li XunHuan asked her, "All these years, have you always been traveling with your grandfather?"

    "Yes." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Have you ever seen him use his martial arts?" Li XunHuan asked.

    "I don't think so ..." Sun XiaoHong replied.

    End of Chapter 80

  3. #83
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 81 - An Unintentional Tragedy

    Sun XiaoHong quickly added, "But this is because he never had the chance to, he never needed to."

    "He never needed to?" Li XunHuan said.

    "Because he has no equal." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "But what about ShangGuan JinHong?" Li XunHuan said.

    "He ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She suddenly stopped talking, did something just occur to her?

    "Your grandfather must have objected to ShangGuan JinHong's actions and deeds." Li XUnHuan said.

    "He ... he really was very annoyed with the way that ShangGuan JinHong acted." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "But he never went to face him." Li XunHuan said.

    Sun XiaoHong lowered her head and said, "No, he didn't ..."

    "Why would he just tolerate it for so long? And why would he only decide to confront ShangHuan JinHong after you had asked him to?" Li XunHuan said.

    Her mouth suddenly felt parched, she was at a loss for words.

    "When a person's martial arts reaches its peak, a certain fear is bound to arise. Fear that others will catch up with you, fear that your own skills will recede. And when that time comes, you will try your best to avoid it. In fact, you will try your best to avoid doing anything at all." Li XunHuan said.

    He sighed and continued, "And the more that you refuse to act, the sooner that you will really be unable to act. Some suddenly decide to go into seclusion, while others become self-destructive - perferring to just end everything in death ... this has always been the common trend in history. Unless you are really able to step past the material world and enter a stage where you forget about human emotions, and become completely oblivious to the world and its people."

    Sun XiaoHong felt her body slowly stiffening up, cold sweat covered her face.

    Because she knew that her grandfather was not 'emotionless'.

    He still cared about a lot of things, and a lot of people.

    "But I could be wrong ..." Li XunHuan said.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly flung herself over and embraced him tightly.

    Her body was shaking like the cotton underneath a bowstring.

    She was scared, very scared.

    Li XunHuan gently brushed her hair. Was it compassion? Sympathy? Or sorrow?

    A person who didn't have feelings would never do such a thing.

    A person like that would never make a mistake.

    But why did the heavens always force the passionate ones in this world to make mistakes that could never be corrected?

    Was a person wrong simply for being sentimental?

    Sun XiaoHong started to twitch as she burst into tears, "Please, please hurry back with me. Just as long as we can hurry back there ... no matter the price ... I'll do anything."

    There were sounds of horses neighing coming from the window, they were in a stable.

    If there was one thing Li XunHuan could do, it was picking out horses. Many people knew that this was so, Li XunHuan was not only an expert with woman, but also with horses. It wasn't easy to be an expert in these two fields.

    Beacause horses and women were both very difficult to understand.

    He picked out the two fastest horses he could find.

    The prettiest woman was not necessarily the most lovable one. The fastest horse was not necessarily the strongest one. Beautiful women lack sincerity, fast horses lacked endurance.

    Two horses fell over.

    Two people started to run frantically.

    The evening sun drew near.

    Two people ran as hard as they could, they didn't care what the people around them thought, they didn't care how tired their bodies felt.

    They didn't care about anything.

    The night drew near.

    There was no longer anyone on the road.

    The stars and the moon were nowhere to be seen on this night, there was not a single light in sight.

    A dark forest lay to the side of the road, outside of the forest was the outline of a pavilion.

    Wasn't this the arranged place for the duel?

    In the middle of the dark night, there seemed to be a glimmer in the distance.

    As the light started to get brighter, an outline of a person could be seen.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly let out a sigh of relief as her entire body loosened up.

    It was a miracle that she was able to keep running for so long, or perhaps she was driven by fear.

    Fear can bring out a person's hidden strength.

    But now, she saw it, she saw the one thing that she was hoping to see. Her panting suddenly stopped.

    She collapsed onto the ground.

    Li XunHuan didn't dare to let out a sigh of relief yet.

    As he saw that light flash back and forth, he noticed that it flickered in a strange rhythm. Sometimes it was exceedingly bright, while other times it would dim dramatically.

    Suddenly, that light flared up like a giant lantern.

    That day, outside a different city, under a different pavilion, Li XunHuan had seen this exact type of flickering light.

    That day, Old Mr. Sun was in that pavilion puffing on his pipe.

    With the exception of Mr. Sun, Li XunHuan had never seen that bright of a light come from someone smoking on a pipe.

    Li XunHuan felt warm tears swelling up in his eyes.

    Sun XiaoHong was on the floor, slowly sobbing as she got up.

    These were tears of joy, these were tears of gratitude.

    The heavens really didn't dictate that she would commit a grave mistake.

    Li XunHuan helped her up as the two walked towards the pavilion.

    The pavilion seemed to be full of smoke, a person was sitting right in the middle.

    The fragrance of the smoke was very familiar to Sun XiaoHong.

    She felt a surge of warmth in her chest, she let go of Li XunHuan's hand and dashed towards the pavilion.

    She only wanted to run straight into her grandfather's arms to tell him how grateful she was.

    She couldn't help and screamed out, "Grandpa! We're back ... we've come back!"

    The light in the pavilion suddenly went out.

    Then, they heard a person solemnly say, "Excellent, I've been waiting for the two of you!"

    The voice was cold, aloof, and resolute, completely void of tone and completely void of emotion.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly stood still. The warmth that she felt suddenly turned freezing cold, so cold that it froze her in place.

    That voice was like a club, striking her from heaven back down to earth.

    Suddenly, four lanterns lit up.

    Four yellow lanterns hung from sticks of bamboo.

    Under the glowing yellow light, sat a single person. He looked as cold as gold, as resolute as gold, even his heart seemed to be forged out of gold.

    He was puffing on a pipe.

    The pipe that he was puffing on was Old Mr. Sun's pipe.

    But he was ShangGuan JinHong!

    The person puffing on the pipe in that pavilion was ShangGuan JinHong!

    Blistering cold wind, torridly freezing rain.

    Nobody knew when it had started to pour.

    Sun XiaoHong just stood in the rain, her body entirely still, entirely stiff.

    She wanted to scream, but didn't have the strength. She wanted to rush in, but her body wouldn't move.

    Her chest was convulsing, she was about to vomit.

    But not even a single tear would come out.

    Li XunHuan had been walking at a slower pace than her, but now he just kept walking towards the pavilion, his steps hadn't stopped.

    But his breath had already stopped.

    He slowly walked up to the pavilion and stood face to face with ShangGuan JinHong.

    ShangGuan JinHong didn't turn his head towards him, his eyes were still focused on the pipe in his hands.

    "You're late."

    After a long pause, Li XunHuan responded, "Yes, I'm late."

    He felt his entire mouth dry up. Bitterness. It was as if his tongue was rubbing up against iron, it was an indescribable taste.

    Could it be the taste of fear?

    "Better late than never." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "You should've known that I would come sooner or later." Li XunHuan said.

    "Its a pity that the person that should've come arrived late, and the person that shouldn't have came early." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    After those words, both of them fell silent. They stood face to face staring at each other, none of them moving a muscle.

    They were both waiting for the opportune moment.

    Once they made a move, it could not be taken back!


    In the midst of the rain and wind, under the dark forest, there were two more people, two more pairs of eyes.

    Those two pairs of eyes were fixed on Li XunHuan and ShangGuan JinHong.

    One pair of eyes was as soft and gentle as water, bright and radiant like stars. Even if you searched the entire world, it'd be hard to find another pair of eyes as beautiful as this.

    The other pair of eyes was deathly pale, they seemed to meld into the lifeless night. Even if you searched all of hell, it'd be hard to find another pair of eyes as frightening as this.

    Even if there were ghosts and demons secretly hiding in that forest, they would've long fled.

    This pair of eyes could make ghosts and demons tremble on their feet.

    Lin XianEr and Jing WuMing had arrived long before anyone else, and they had been hiding here for a very long time.

    Lin XianEr stood beside Jing WuMing and was clenching tightly onto his shoulder.

    Jing WuMing didn't make a sound, and didn't move a muscle.

    "If you want to kill him, now is the best chance, there won't be a better one than this." Lin XianEr said.

    "Someone else is trying to kill him right now. There is no need for me to attack." Jing WuMing said.

    "I'm not telling you to kill Li XunHuan." Lin XianEr said.

    "Then who?" Jing WuMing asked.

    "ShangGuan JinHong, kill ShangGuan JinHong!" Lin XianEr said.

    She was trembling with excitement, her fingernails dug into Jing WuMing's skin.

    Jing WuMing didn't move, nor did he feel the pain.

    But there was a strange fire in his eyes, it looked like the flames of hell.

    "He is fully concentrated on Li XunHuan right now, he won't have the strength to deal with anyone else. In addition, he has no idea about your right hand, you'll definitely be able to kill him." Lin XianEr said.

    Jing WuMing still didn't move.

    "You're the most familiar with the operations of the 'Gold Currency Union', once he is gone, you will be its new Chief." Lin XianEr said.

    She started to grunt under her breath.

    Her grunting didn't sound very pleasant at all. She sounded like a pregnant dog.

    "Even if you don't want that position, you should at least pay him back for what he did to you. So that when he gets to hell, he'll regret how he treated you." Lin XianEr said.

    Jing WuMing's eyes still looked like they held the flames of hell. Those flames started to flare intensely.

    "Go, hurry, if you miss this chance, you'll be the one who will regret it, not him." Lin XianEr said.

    Jing WuMing nodded his head and replied, "Okay, I'll go!"

    "Hurry, I'll wait for you here. Once you succeed, I'll be yours forever." Lin XianEr said.

    "You don't have to wait for me." Jing WuMing said.

    "Why?" Lin XianEr said.

    "Because you're coming with me!" Jing WuMing said.

    Lin XianEr suddenly felt that something was wrong.

    A hint of fright showed in her beautiful eyes as Jing WuMing started to squeeze her wrist.

    Lin XianEr never liked to fall to tears. She felt that women who had to turn to tears were not only weak but repuslive and foolish as well.

    Besides, she had much better ways to get men to do what she wanted.

    But now, she was in so much pain that she couldn't help but start tearing.

    She could almost hear the bones in her hand shattering, "What did I do wrong? Why are you treating me like this?"

    "In your whole life, you've made one mistake." Jing WuMing said.

    "What?" Lin XianEr said.

    "You shouldn't have assumed that everyone loves you the way that Ah Fei does!" Jing WuMing said.


    Li XunHuan had his back to the forest.

    He did not see Lin XianEr and Jing WuMing as they emerged from the forest, he was focused solely on ShangGuan JinHong. But what he did see was a strange look come over ShangGuan JinHong's face.

    ShangGuan JinHong's concentration was suddenly broken.

    He never gave his opponent such an opportunity before, and he definitely would never reveal such an opening ever again.

    But Li XunHuan didn't strike, his dagger stayed in his hand.

    Because he felt a terrifying killer aura coming from behind him.

    His flying dagger was not thrown with just his hand, it was thrown with his entire body and essence. If he had released his dagger, he would have had no way to defend an attack from behind him.

    His foot turned and slid seven feet. And he saw Jing WuMing.

    Jing WuMing was standing directly behind him.

    Then, he saw Lin XianEr, he had never seen such a look of distress on her face.

    It started to pour even harder.

    Every one of them was completely drenched.

    Even though lanterns hung from the corners of the pavilion, their lights paled in the darkness of the night.

    Jing WuMing stood in the darkness, he looked like a shadow, as if he wasn't even there.

    But Li XunHuan had shifted his gaze from ShangGuan JinHong to him.

    ShangGuan JinHong had also shifted his gaze from Li XunHuan to him.

    Because they both felt that victory and defeat no longer lay in their hands, but in Jing WuMing's.

    Jing WuMing started to laugh, very loudly.

    In his entire life he had never laughed so hard before.

    ShangGuan JinHong let out a sigh and said, "Just keep laughing, because you have every right to be laughing."

    "Why aren't you laughing?" Jing WuMing said.

    "It just won't come out." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Why's that?" Jing WuMing said.

    "You know the reason." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "You're right. I do know the reason." Jing WuMing said.

    He stopped laughing, slowly stood up straight, and said, "Because now I am the one who can decide both your fates, while both of you won't even dare to attack me."

    He was right, no one dared to attack him.

    If ShangGuan JinHong made a move on him right now, he would leave his defenses wide open for Li XunHuan. There was no way he would risk giving Li XunHuan such a chance.

    Li XunHuan was in the same exact situation.

    "I can help you kill Li XunHuan, or I could help Li XunHuan kill you." Jing WuMing said.

    "I believe that is so." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Do you? I'm not just a cripple who has outlived his usefulness anymore?" Jing WuMing said.

    "Everyone makes mistakes in judgement from time to time." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "How do you know you've made a mistake? I really could be just a cripple." Jing WuMing said.

    "Your right hand is even stronger than your left." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "How can you tell?" Jing WuMing said.

    "Lin XianEr is not a weak woman, it'd be difficult for anyone to hold her down with just one hand." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    Jing WuMing slowly nodded his head and said, "You really can tell. Its a shame that you realized a little too late."

    "Not only can I see that, I can see that I've made a mistake as well." SHangGuan JinHong said.

    "You really regret what you've done to me?" Jing WuMing said.

    "Yes I really do regret what I've done to you, I should've killed you instead!" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "So why didn't you kill me?" Jing WuMing said.

    "I couldn't bear to." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    A strange look came over Jing WuMing's face, "Even you can't bear to kill sometimes?"

    "I'm also human." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "So you think I won't kill you either?" Jing WuMing said.

    ShangGuan JinHong glanced over at Lin XianEr and said, "She definitely wanted you to kill me."

    "She did." Jing WuMing said.

    "But if you really wanted to kill me, you wouldn't have brought her over here." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    Lin XianEr suddenly burst out in laughter.

    She had fallen to the ground and was laughing madly, it really was quite a startling sight.

    "Of course he is afraid to kill you. If you were dead, he wouldn't be able to live on either. I finally understand now that he only lives for you. He came here because he wanted you to acknowledge his worth. But in front of anyone else, he wouldn't be worth a penny." Lin XianEr said.

    "But it'd be very easy for him to kill you." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "You think he is willing to kill me? ... When you wanted to kill me, he wanted to save me, do you know why?" Lin XianEr said.

    ShangGuan JinHong said coldly, "Because he wants to kill you in front of me."

    "You're wrong, he doesn't want to kill me in front of you, he wants you to kill me with your own hands ..." Lin XianEr said.

    She laughed and said, "When we were together, he was insane with jealousy. Back then I thought it was because of me, but now I understand that it was because of you. He despises anyone who gains favor with you. Even your son is not an exception ... you do know who killed your son, don't you?"

    "As long as he kills for me, it doesn't matter who he kills." ShangGuan JinHong replied emotionlessly.

    The smile on her face slowly vanished. She let out a long sigh and said, "I always thought that I understood men very well, but I really don't know what the two of you are thinking. I really don't understand what the relationship is between the two of you."

    She smiled coldly and continued, "All I know is that whatever is is, it is undoubtedly disgusting. I don't care what the two of you have to say, I won't hear a word of it."

    "Although you know very little, you've said way too much." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "But no matter what I say, there is no way I can convince you to kill him, isn't that right?" Lin XianEr said.

    "There is no way!" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    Lin XianEr turned to face Jing WuMing and said, "And there's obviously no way I can convince you to kill him either, right?"

    "Right." Jing WuMing said.

    Lin XianEr let out a sigh and said, "It looks like I'm going to die in your hands. The only question is by whom? Will it be you? Or you?"

    Jing WuMing didn't say another word.

    He lifted his hand and threw Lin XianEr towards the ground at ShangGuan JinHong's feet.

    Lin XianEr didn't struggle to get back up this time, she didn't move at all. She just crawled up into a ball on the ground.

    But she was a woman.

    You could expect her not to move and not to resist, but you couldn't make her shut her mouth.

  4. #84
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 82 - Unspoken Consolation

    If you were to pay close attention to a woman who was about to die, you would notice that the last part of her body to stiffen would be her tongue. This is because the most sensitive part of a woman's body was her tongue.

    "I should've figured it would be you. The whole reason why he brought me here was so that he could watch you kill me with your own hands. Only then would he be satisfied." Lin XianEr said.

    "And will you feel satisfied knowing that you'll die in my hands?" ShangGuan JinHong asked.

    "Well that depends on how you plan on killing me. I hope it won't be a quick death, because only by dying slowly can one savor the taste of death." Lin XianEr said.

    She suddenly started laughing, "We only get this chance once. Even if I have to endure unbearable pain, it'll all be worth it."

    "And if you were to die slowly, you'd be able to say a couple more words. Talking can hep alleviate the pain of death and it can also lessen its frightfulness." ShangGuan JinHong said coldly.

    "There's no way you'll kill me off quickly will you? I know you enjoy watching people die a slow and agonizing death. And I've treated you pretty well, haven't I? I entrusted all my hard-earned wealth with you and let you do with it as you pleased. When you ordered people to kill me, you clearly wanted to eliminate me from the picture." Lin XianEr said.

    "Right. You're not even worth a single penny now. That's why I don't even want to bother killing you." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    He suddenly kicked her towards Li XunHuan.

    This time she couldn't say a word. Her drenched clothes grasped tightly onto her skin.

    Her curvaceous figure was ravishing beyond words.

    After all, she was the most beautiful woman in the world. Not only was she attractive, but extremely smart as well.

    She could've been very well off.

    But now, she couldn't even die a proper death.

    She was supposed to be an angel living amongst the clouds, but now she was like a wild dog stuck in mud.

    How did it come to this?

    Was it because she didn't know how to appreciate all that she had?

    It started to pour even harder.

    Li XunHuan stared at Lin XianEr crawling around in the mud, he suddenly felt sadness and empathy.

    Not for her, but for Ah Fei.

    She had brought it all upon herself, but what about Ah Fei?

    Ah Fei hadn't done anything wrong.

    Although he chose the wrong person to love, he was not wrong for being in love.

    ShangGuan JinHong looked over at Li XunHuan and said, "I didn't kill her because I figured you'd have more reason to kill her than I do, so she's yours."

    Li XunHuan was silent for a long while. He finally let out a long sigh and said, "It looks like you've underestimated me again."

    After a long pause, ShangGuan JinHong nodded his head slowly and said, "You're right, I have underestimated you. You won't kill her either."

    He slowly continued, "The act of killing requires a murderous intent, and you need very ounce of it focused on me. Why would you waste any of it on a person like her?"

    "To kill, one must kill the right person. To kill, one must kill in the right place." Li XunHuan said.

    "Is something wrong with this place?" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Originally, no. But now, yes." Li XunHuan said.

    "What is wrong with it?" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "It's getting too crowded here." Li XunHuan said.

    "Is he making you feel uncomfortable?" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Yes." Li XunHuan said.

    He didn't want to hide it. Even if Jing WuMing didn't attack, he was still a threat to him.

    Because his sword could come out at anytime. There was no one in this world who could withstand a combined attack from the two of them.

    ShangGuan JinHong sunk his head and said, "I understand what you mean, but now that he has returned, no one can convince him to leave, isn't that right?"

    That last part was directed at Jing WuMing.

    "Yes." Jing WuMing said.

    Even though he stood far away from him, anyone would notice that Jing WuMing and ShangGuan JinHong were like one being, one indestructible force that couldn't be stopped.

    Li XunHuan let out a sigh, he suddenly thought of Ah Fei. If only Ah Fei were here ...

    ShangGuan JinHong read his mind perfectly and said, "If Ah Fei were present then you would have a chance, its unfortunate though ... that he is such a disappointment."

    "I was never disappointed in him. No matter how many times some people fall, they will always get back up." Li XunHuan said.

    "You believe that he is such a person?" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Of course he is." Li XunHuan said.

    "Well even if you're right, by the time that he stands back up, you'll have already hit the ground. And I can guarantee that when you fall this time, you won't ever be able to get back up." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Now ..." Li XunHuan said.

    "Now you don't even have the slightest chance." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    Li XunHuan suddenly laughed and said, "You should at least let me pick the place then. If a person is about to die, they should at least have the right to choose where they are going to die."

    "You're wrong, the person who kills has that power, the person who is to be killed has no such right. But ..." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    He stared at Li XunHuan and said, "I'll make an exception in your case. Not only are you a good friend, but a worthy adversary as well."

    "Thank you." Li XunHuan said.

    "So where do you wish to die?" Li XunHuan said.

    "If a person has suffered his whole life, he will want to die a comfortable death." Li XunHuan said.

    "Dying can never be comfortable." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "I just want to find a place where it isn't raining, and change into a fresh set of clothes. I don't want to die soaked and drenched in this nasty wet place." he smiled and continued, "Honestly speaking, except when I'm taking a bath, I always prefer that my body to be dry."

    "I've always heard that you're unafraid of death but I could never get myself to believe it, because I don't believe that there's anyone in this world who is not afraid of dying. But now ... I can somehow see how it could be true." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Oh?" Li XunHuan said.

    "When a person still has the mood to say such words when they know they're about to die, it shows that the person really doesn't value life and death. That's why I find it quite strange." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Strange?" Li XunHuan said.

    "The only thing that we have to fear in life is death. But if you are unafraid of death, then why should you even care whether you're dry or not when you die?" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    He looked at Li XunHuan and said, "That's why I think you have ulterior motives for doing this."

    "And what could those be?" Li XunHuan said.

    "Some people would think that you're merely stalling for time. Because even when faced with imminent death, some people will do everything they can to postpone it just a longer. Perhaps they think some sort of hope or chance will appear, or at the very least they get to live just a few moments longer." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "And you think that's my reason?" Li XunHuan said.

    "Of course not, I've never really underestimated you before." ShangGuan JinHong said, "You know that there won't be any sudden miracles, no one in this world can save you now. And also, I know that you're unafraid of death."

    "Well then, what do you think I'm trying to do?" Li XunHuan said.

    "I think you're just searching for an opportunity to let the two of them escape, because you know that I won't kill anyone here before killing you. A person won't waste his appetite on bread if he knows that a grand feast is waiting for him." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "That's a pretty bad analogy." Li XunHuan said with a smile.

    "Perhaps, but its not that far off." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    Li XunHuan's smile looked very forced, "But do you really care whether the two of them live or die?"

    "I don't have to." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    It really was of no concern to him.

    If they lived, they were of no threat to him.

    If he wanted them to die, he could kill them anytime he wanted to.

    Li XunHuan couldn't even bear to look at Sun XiaoHong.

    But whatever the case, she was still alive now, and she was still breathing.

    That was enough for him.

    What else could he possibly do for her?

    "But I've already said that I'd make an exception for you, because you're different from anyone else." ShangGuan JinHong said, "Since you've lived so cleanly, the least I can do is to make sure that you don't die in filth, like some wild dog in the mud."

    Death. How would he die? Where would he die?

    None of this was important.

    The only thing that mattered was that he could die peacefully.

    But what about Sun XiaoHong?

    He couldn't bear to look at her this whole time. He didn't dare to either.

    Because he couldn't afford to break his concentration.

    But he had to leave now, she must have known that this would probably be the last time she would ever see him again. He wasn't just going to some foreign place, he was leaving this world.

    How would she be able to follow him this time?

    He was afraid that she would want to accompany him, that she would want to die together.

    If she were to do this, he'd be force to knock her unconscious, or seal her accupoints and then slowly try to convince her to live on without him.

    It would definitely be a very sad and depressing scene.

    Li XunHuan really hoped that it wouldn't come down to that. She had enough of a burden to carry in her heart already, another such load and her emotions would probably fall to pieces.

    Although she was a very strong willed person, her emotions were rather frgaile.

    Sun XiaoHong didn't do as he had thought, she didn't even walk over to say goodbye.

    What was the reason?

    Li XunHuan finally couldn't resist and turned around to look at her.

    She hadn't fainted, nor had she moved from where she was standing.

    But she was staring right at Li XunHuan.

    Although the expression on her face was full of pain, the look in her eyes was still warm and resolute. Although she didn't say a word, her eyes were telling Li XunHuan, "Since this is something that you must do, then please just keep focused on doing it. Don't let me distract you, I understand and I won't try to stop you. Because I have complete faith in you."

    Although he only glanced at her for a moment, Li XunHuan suddenly felt a huge burden being alleviated.

    Because he realized that she was an incredibly strong woman, that she would not make him worry about her. That even without him having to tell her, that she would try her best to live on.

    She wanted only to be a comfort and an encouragement.

    Li XunHuan couldn't express in words just how grateful he was, because only he understood just how much it meant that she was this understanding and supporting of him.

    He suddenly realized that he was extremely lucky to have met her.

    Li XunHuan finally started to leave. His steps were much more firm and resolute than when he came.

    Sun XiaoHong watched quietly as he walked away. After a long while, she finally turned to look at Lin XianEr.

    Lin XianEr was struggling to stand up from the muddy ground.

    She tried her best to look proud and elegant, but she knew that whatever she did was useless. Because even she felt quite distressed and miserable.

    Sun XiaoHong looked at her without a trace of emotion on her face.

    Showing no emotion was a way of showing disdainful emotions.

    Lin XianEr laughed coldly and said, "I know that you're looking down on me right now, but I think that you're much worse than I am, do you know why?"

    "No, I don't." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "He killed your grandfather, and he's about to kill Li XunHuan, yet all you can do is stand there like a piece of wood." Lin XianEr said.

    "And what should I be doing?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "You should ask yourself that ... don't tell me you don't even know what you're feeling in your own heart?" Lin XianEr said.

    "I know." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Then you should be grieving, regretting, and in pain." Lin XianEr siad.

    "How do you know that I'm not in pain? When a person is grieving or in pain, that person doesn't have to show it with words but with actions." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "And just what exactly have you shown? Just what exactly have you done?" Lin XianEr said.

    "What can I do now?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Since you know that Li XunHuan is walking to his death right now, you should at least try to stop him ..." Lin XianEr said.

    "You think that I can stop him?" Sun XiaoHong sighed and said, "If I were to do that, then his mind would just be in even more disarray, and he'd die even faster."

    "But you ... you haven't even shed a single tear." Lin XianEr said.

    Sun XiaoHong was quite for quite some time, before saying, "I really do want to start crying right now, start flooding my eyes with tears, but now is not the time."

    "What are you waiting for?" Lin XianEr said.

    "Tomorrow ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "But when tomorrow comes, there will be another tomorrow." Lin XianEr said.

    "Because there will always be another tomorrow, there will always be hope." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She slowly continued, "Although I've made a mistake, it's part of the past now and I'll just have to live with it. Even if I wanted to burst out in tears, it'll have to wait until tomorrow. Because there is something else that I must do today!"

    Only fools cry about the past.

    The courageous acknowledge their mistakes so that they will have the strength to deal with the present, instead of burying themselves in tears.

    Tears cannot wipe away humiliation, nor can they correct the errors of the past. If you really want to right the wrongs that you've done, the only thing that you can do is dig up the courage to start all over again from today.

    Lin XianEr froze still.

    The whole reason why she said those things was to upset Sun XiaoHong. Because since SUn XiaoHong was looking down on her, she wanted Sun XiaoHong to look down on herself as well.

    But she had failed.

    Sun XiaoHong was much stronger and much more courageous than she could have ever expected.

  5. #85
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 83 - A Deep and Profound Love

    After a while, Lin XianEr clenched her teeth and said, "What's so important that you have to do today?"

    "When a woman wants to support her man, it doesn't necessarily mean that she has to accompany him in death, or that she has to die for him. But rather, she should console and comfort him, so that he may feel at ease to do what he has to do. She should make him feel important, so that he won't feel like he is being neglected." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Is that it?" Lin XianEr smirked.

    "Other than that, what else can I possibly do for him?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    She didn't have to do anything else.

    That really was enough.

    Any man who was lucky enough to have a woman like her would feel completely satisfied.

    "I know that you're trying to upset me, but I don't blame you. Because I suddenly feel very sorry for you." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "You feel sorry for me? What's there to feel sorry about?" Lin XianEr said.

    "You think that you're young, beautiful, and smart and you think that all the men in this world will slobber at your feet. That's why when you meet someone who truly loves and cares for you, you'll never be able to appreciate it. Instead you push him away and think that he is just an idiot. But one day you'll realize that the people who truly love you in this world are not many. True love can't be bought with youth and beauty." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She softly continued, "And when that time comes, you'll realize that you have nothing, that your entire life is empty - when a woman reaches that point in her life, she is really someone to be pitied."

    "You ... you think that I've reached that point?" Lin XianEr said.

    Her voice was trembling, her entire body was trembling. Was she simply indignant? Cold? Or was she scared?

    SUn XiaoHong didn't answer her. She just looked coldly at her pale and troubled face, at her mud-covered body. That was more devastating than any answer that she could give.

    Lin XianEr suddenly let out a laugh and said, "You're right, I really did look down on him, and thought of him as nothing more than an idiot. But if I really were to go look for him right now, he would still come crawling back."

    "Why don't you go and try?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I don't have to try to know that there is no way that he can live without me." Lin XianEr said.

    Although her mouth said that it she didn't need to try, her body had already turned around and walked away.

    She was using all her strength and she ran incredibly fast, because she knew that this was her last chance. If she lost this chance, it would be all over for her. Sun XiaoHong stood silently for a few moments before turning her head away.

    The land was covered in a vast black expanse. Out of the rainy mist, the figure of a person appeared ...

    No one knew when that person had come, nor did anyone know how long that person had been here for.

    The first thing that Sun XiaoHong noticed were her eyes.

    Her eyes weren't very bright. Perhaps those were eyes had shed too many tears, so they appeared rather lackluster. But that quiet sense of sorrow and grief that she carried would bring even the most dispassionate of men to tears.

    Then, she saw her face.

    Her face wasn't that of an incredible beauty.

    Her face was too pale, as if she hadn't seen the light of day for a very long time.

    But for some reason, when Sun XiaoHong saw her, she felt that she had seen the most beautiful woman in the world.

    Her hair was disheveled and her clothes were soaking wet, one would assume that she was in distress. However, the strange thing was that anyone who saw her wouldn't think that way.

    She still looked very youthful, and very elegant.

    Regardless of the situation, she touch anyone with her unique nature and her indomitable strength.

    Sun XiaoHong had never seen this person before, but with just one glance she could guess who she was.

    Lin ShiYin!

    Only a woman such as her could make someone like Li XunHuan fall so deeply in love.

    Sun XiaoHong let out a long sigh!

    "Why does everyone think that Lin XianEr is the most beautiful woman in the world? She should be the most beautiful woman in the world. Not even considering when she was still young, even now, she is much stronger than Lin XianEr will ever be."

    Perhaps it was the rainy night, or perhaps it was because she was a woman, but that was what she thought.

    A woman's taste in woman is different from a man's taste.

    Lin ShiYin was looking at her as well, she walked over slowly and said, "You ... you're Miss Sun, right?"

    Sun XiaoHong nodded her head and said, "I know who you are, I've heard him talk about you before."

    Lin ShiYin let out a smile, a very sorrowful smile.

    Of course she knew which 'him' Sun XiaoHong was referring to.

    "So you've been here for quite a while." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Lin ShiYin lowered her head and said, "I heard that he was going to have a duel here and I just wanted to say a few words to him. But I haven't left the house for quite some time and I had gotten lost along the way."

    She let out a slight smile and continued, "But that's okay, what I originally wanted to tell him I can tell you instead."

    Her voice sounded very soft and fragile. It seemed like she needed to think for quite some time before every word.

    Every word she said was clear and insipid. Anyone who listened to her talk would think that she was a rather indifferent and heartless woman.

    But Sun XiaoHong understood her very well. Her words sounded cold and heartless because she was someone who had suffered and endured much pain in her life.

    Sun XiaoHong felt nothing but sympathy and compassion in her heart, she couldn't help but ask, "I know that he has always wanted to see you, since you've come all the way here, why don't you follow him to see him one more time?"

    "I ... I can't." Lin ShiYin said.

    She had originally wanted to see Li XunHuan, but when she arrived, there was already someone by his side. She didn't want to show up because she was afraid of the feelings that would arise if she saw him.

    Because she knew that if she was to see Li XunHuan again, she wouldn't be able to control herself any longer.

    Even though she didn't say any of this, Sun XiaoHong understood her very well.

    "I never used to understand why some people listen blindly to the words of others, and let others change their destiny. Only now do I understand that you listen to someone else not because you fear him, but because you love him, and you know that everything that he does is for you." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Lin ShiYin was trying to control herself the entire time, but now she just couldn't hold it in any longer.

    Tears started to stream down her cheeks.

    Because every word that Sun XiaoHong spoke went straight to her heart. Every word was like a needle, piercing deep into her soul.

    She had once asked herself, "I don't have anything anymore, I feel completely empty, exactly the same as Lin XianEr, but whose fault was this? Could it be that I have been mistaken in the past?"

    She used to despise Li XunHuan, she used to hate him.

    Such a wretched and sorrowful ending, was it all because of Li XunHuan?

    But only now did she realize that the one who was wrong was not Li XunHuan, but herself.

    "Why did I listen to him back then? Why didn't I just tell him straight to his face that I loved him, and that I wouldn't marry anyone but him."

    Sun XiaoHong said softly, "I'm not too sure about what exactly happened between the two of you, but I know that ..."

    Lin ShiYin suddenly interrupted her and said, "But now I know, now that I've seen you, I know that I was wrong."

    "Why is that?" Sun XiaoHong exclaimed.

    "Because ... if I had been as courageous as you, as strong and resolute as you, then it wouldn't have ended up this way."

    "But you ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I know now that I was never worthy enough to be his wife, only you're good enough for him." Lin ShiYin said.

    Sun XiaoHong lowered her head and said, "I ..."

    Lin ShiYin didn't let her speak and continued, "Because only you can comfort him and support him. No matter what he does, your faith in him will never change. But I ..."

    She sighed quietly as tears rolled down her cheeks.

    Sun XiaoHong was quiet for quite some time. She suddenly smiled and said, "But in the future, you'll have many chances to see him. Whatever happened in the past is behind you, but now the two of you can ..."

    Lin ShiYin suddenly cut her off and said, "You think that he still has a chance? That there is hope?"

    "Of course there is!" Sun XiaoHong said.

    She smiled and said, "Anyone else would think that he has lost all faith in himself. If someone doesn't even believe in himself anymore, then what hope is there?"

    "That's true." Lin ShiYin said.

    "But I know that he is acting this way only to lure ShangGuan JinHong into letting his guard down. Once ShangGuan JinHong takes his enemy too lightly, then he will start being careless." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Her eyes flashed brightly, "And once ShangGuan JinHong is careless, then he will be able to take his life!"

    Lin ShiYin let out a sigh and said, "He has so much confidence in himself because you believe in him so much. Your support and encouragement is extremely important to him, I don't even think you realize just how important you are."

    Sun XiaoHong lowered her head and smiled, "I do realize."

    Not only was she confident in Li XunHuan, she was very confident in herself as well.

    Lin ShiYin looked at her and felt an indescribable feeling in her heart. Was it envy? Jealousy? Or was it self-pity? Perhaps, it was just that she was really happy for him.

    Li XunHuan had been down for half his life, his heart must be extremely tired. Only someone like Sun XiaoHong could possibly comfort him. Even if he were to win this time, there would definitely come a time when he would fall again.

    Even if no one was able to strike him down, he would undoubtedly strike himself down!

    Lin ShiYin sighed and said, "That he was able to meet you, really is the work of the heavens repaying him for all his suffering. He deserves to be happy, but ..."

    She suddenly asked, "What about Jing WuMing? Even if he can defeat ShangGuan JinHong, there is no way that he can withstand an attack from the two of them."

    "Jing WuMing might not even attack. Since ShangGuan JinHong believes that there is no way that he will lose, he won't even ask for Jing WuMing's help. But by then, even if Jing WuMing wanted to attack, it would be too late." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She was entirely correct. That was Li XunHuan's one and only chance.

    If they wanted to defeat Li XunHuan, they only had one chance as well - his flying dagger would never give anyone a second chance.

    The question was who would be able to take advantage of that one chance.

    "So what you're saying is, that if Jing WuMing doesn't attack, then he will have a chance?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "Right." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "How can you be certain that Jing WuMing will not attack?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "I'm not." Sun XiaoHong said, "But what I am certain of is that after two hours, none of them will make a move."

    "But even if you are right, how do we know that something will happen within these two hours?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "Something will." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "What?" Lin ShiYin asked.

    "Ah Fei." Sun XiaoHong replied.

    Although Lin ShiYin didn't say a word, the look on her face was that of disappointment.

    Everyone couldn't help but feel disappointed towards Ah Fei.

    "Although no one has confidence in him anymore, that is only because he wears heavy shackles on his body." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Shackles?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "Yes, shackles. And only one person can release him from those shackles." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Who?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "You need the bell-ringer to unfasten the bell." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "You mean ... Lin XianEr?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "Exactly, when he finally realizes that Lin XianEr is not worth his love, then he will be free of his shackles." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Lin ShiYin paused for a while and then said, "You may be right. But he has fallen for so long, can he really get back up within such a short amount of time?"

    "For any other reason, he probably can't. But for Li XunHuan, he definitely can." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She slowly added, "For the people who we care about, we can sometimes do things that we're normally not capable of."

    Lin ShiYin let out a long sigh and said, "So that is the case ..."

    "So now I must look for Ah Fei and tell him everything that has happened." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Wait .. there is something else that I must tell you." Lin ShiYin said.

    "What is it?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I haven't been to the outside world for quite some time, yet I know so much about everything that has happened. Don't you find this strange?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "Not at all, because I know that you have a very intelligent son." Sun XiaoHong said with a smile.

    Lin ShiYin lowered her head and said, "No matter what happens, he will always be my son. I don't have anything in this world except for him ... that's why I hoped that you could tell him for me, to forgive him ..."

    "He has never hated anyone, you should know that." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Lin ShiYin was quiet for a long while, as if there was something that she wanted to say, but just didn't know how to say it.

    "Is it about the 'LianHua Compendium'?" Sun XiaoHong asked.

    Lin ShiYin sounded quiet startled and said, "You know about this?"

    Sun XiaoHong smiled and said, "I was the one who told him in the first place, my second uncle ..."

    "Right, when Master Wang came, Mr. Sun was also there." Lin ShiYin said.

    "Then that manual really was in your possession?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "It was, but I haven't told him about it this entire time." Lin ShiYin said.

    "Why is that?" Sun XiaoHong asked.

    "Because at that time I felt that martial arts was of no benefit to him, that it would harm him instead. The greater his martial arts were, the more troubles that were bound to arise, so ..." Lin ShiYin said.

    "So you've kept it from him the entire time, because you just wanted him to be a normal person, and lead a normal life." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "That was my biggest reason, no one else would ever believe me ..." Lin ShiYin said sullenly.

    "I believe you." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She sighed and said, "If I were you, I'm afraid that I would've done the exact same thing."

    Only a woman could understand how another women felt.

    Only another woman could understand how a woman was capable of doing anything for the man she loved. In the eyes of others, her actions would appear foolish, but in their eyes, no reason was more important in the entire world.

    "But I really regret it now, I really shouldn't have kept it from him." Lin ShiYin said.

    "You only kept it from him for his sake." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Because ... if he had studied the contents of the 'LianHua Compendium', even if ShangGuan JinHong and Jing WuMing were to team up on him, they still wouldn't be a match for him." Lin ShiYin said.

    "So that's why you feel guilty, that's why you want him to forgive you." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Lin ShiYin nodded her head and said, "I know that he won't blame me for it, but if I .. I don't let him know about this, I just won't be able to live with myself."

    "But you're wrong." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I'm wrong?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "If he had studied the 'LianHua Compendium', he still wouldn't be a match for ShangGuan JinHong." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Why is that?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "Do you know why Ah Fei's sword is so fearsome?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Because he ..." Lin ShiYin said.

    "He is fast, because he is so devoted, much more than anyone else. It is the same for Li XunHuan. If he had learned any other martial arts, then he would lose that focus. He probably wouldn't be as fast." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Lin ShiYin lowered her head and said, "No matter what the case, I only hope that you will relay my feelings to him."

    "You two will have a chance to see each other very soon, why don't you just tell him then?" Sun XiaoHong said.

  6. #86
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 84 - A Sudden Revelation

    Lin ShiYin fell silent for quite some time, then she lifted her head.

    The expression on her face had suddenly become very peaceful, "There won't be any chance that we'll see each other in the future again."

    Sun XiaoHong knotted her brows and said, "Why?"

    "Because ... because I am leaving for a very far away place." Lin ShiYin said.

    "You ... do you have to go?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I must!" Lin ShiYin said.

    "But why?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I've already made up my mind." Lin ShiYin said.

    Sun XiaoHong couldn't say anything to that.

    Lin ShiYin smiled and said, "My biggest weakness has always been my indecision. This might be the first time that I've ever made up my mind. I just hope that no one will try to convince me otherwise."

    "But ... but this is the first time that we've met. You should at least let me see you again, there's still so much that I want to talk to you about." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Lin ShiYin thought for a while and said, "Very well. I will see you here again tomorrow, in the early morning."

    And with that, Lin ShiYin left.

    It felt as if Sun XiaoHong was the only person left in the entire world.

    She hadn't shed a single tear the entire time, but now her eyes started to water.

    She had also made up her mind.

    As long as Li XunHuan survived, she would bring him here.

    Since the first time that she met Li XunHuan, she had decided that she would devote her entire life to him.

    She has never wavered from that decision.

    But now, she felt that she had been too selfish. So she decided that she would sacrifice her own happiness!

    Because she felt that Lin ShiYin needed him much more than she did!

    "The two of them have suffered too much already, they have every right to be happy. No matter what I will try my best to bring the two of them back together."

    "She had always been his, no one should ever separate them."

    "Long Xiao4Yun can't, he was never good enough for her!"

    "But I ..."

    She made up her mind to not think about herself. She bit down on her lips, wiped away her tears, and said to herself, "Even if I want to cry, it'll have to wait until tomorrow. There is still much for me to do today ..."

    She lifted her head.

    Everything was pitch black, it was deep into the night.

    But if the dark night is upon us, the bright light of day can't be far away.

    There are some who say that there are only two kinds of people in this world: good and evil.

    Lin XianEr could definitely be classified as the evil type, but what about Lin ShiYin and Sun XiaoHong?

    Although they were definitely good people, the two of them were very different.

    When problems or hardships arose, Lin ShiYin would just endure, and endure ...

    She felt that a woman's greatest virtue was to endure!

    But Sun XiaoHong was different. She would always resist!

    As long as she felt strongly against something, she would fight it!

    She was resolute, smart, brave, and full of confidence. She was never afraid to love, nor to hate. And if you were to search her entire being, you would never find a single dark or gloomy spot.

    It's because of people like her that there is humanity in this world, that it unyieldingly progresses.

    "The women in this world guide the future of the human race."

    This saying definitely applied to her.


    "As long as I go look for him again, no matter what, he will still come crawling back to me."

    "Without me, there's no way that he can live on."

    Was Lin XianEr really that confident?

    She had every right to be, she knew that Ah Fei was madly in love with her.

    But where was Ah Fei right now?

    "He must still be in that little house, because that house was 'our home'. My belongings are still there, my essence is still in that house."

    "He must be there waiting for me to return."

    Lin XianEr suddenly felt much more relaxed.

    "He probably hasn't been doing anything these past two days except drinking wine. He's probably made a big mess out of the house by now. He probably hasn't even moved those corpses yet."

    When she thought of this, Lin XianEr didn't dare to furrow her eyebrows.

    "But no matter, once I see him, he'll be dying to do anything I ask of him. I needn't lift a finger at all."

    Lin XianEr let out a sigh of relief. When a woman like her hits rock bottom, but there's still a place that she can escape to, a person patiently waiting there for her to come back, she felt incredibly overjoyed.

    "I really have been too cruel to him in the past, I was really pushing him over the edge. I'm going to have to treat him differently from now on."

    "Men are like little children. If you want them to behave, you have to give them their candy."

    She suddenly felt extremely warm inside her heart.

    "Come to think of it, he really isn't a very dislikeable or annoying person. He's probably much better than most of the men I've met in my life."

    Lin XianEr came to the realization that she did feel a certain amount of love towards Ah Fei.

    If there was anyone in her life who she sincerely had feelings for, it would be Ah Fei. The more she thought about it, the more she realized how lucky she was when Ah Fei was by her side.

    "I really should treat him better from now on. Men like him are extremely rare in this world, I'm afraid I may never find another one like him."

    And the more she thought about it, the more she realized that she must not let go of him.

    Perhaps she had always been in love with him, and it was just that he was so much more in love with her that she took everything for granted.

    If he wasn't so deeply in love with her, perhaps she would've wanted him more back then.

    This is one of our weaknesses, one of the contradictions of human nature.

    That is why smart men never show their feelings towards the women they love, instead they keep it all inside.

    "Ah Fei, please don't worry. From now on I will never hurt you again, and I will stay by your side each and every day. Let's forget all about the past and start over again."

    "Just as long as you treat me as you did in the past, I will listen to your every word from now on."

    But would Ah Fei still treat her the same as before?

    Lin XianEr wasn't so sure of herself anymore, her confidence was slowly waning.

    She had never felt like this before, because she had never realized how important Ah Fei was to her. She didn't even want to care whether Ah Fei would treat her well or not anymore.

    Only when a person really wants to obtain something will that person be afraid of losing it.

    This constant desire and dissatisfaction is one of the many weaknesses of humans.

    The sad thing is, the more you desire something, the greater your dissatisfaction may ultimately be.

    Lin XianEr lifted her head and saw the desolate house alongside the small road.

    There were lights inside the house.

    She stopped in place and tore off a piece of her sleeve and washed her face in the rain. Then she gently combed through her hair with her fingertips.

    She didn't want Ah Fei to see her in such miserable state.

    Because she really couldn't afford to lose him again.

    The lights were very bright inside the house.

    A candle was set on the table.

    There was a large pot of porridge next to the candle.

    The house wasn't as dirty or messy as Lin XianEr had imagined. The corpses were nowhere in sight, the blood stains had been washed away, everything was spotlessly clean.

    Ah Fei sat next to the table, slowly sipping on a bowl of porridge.

    He always ate very slowly because he knew that food shouldn't be taken for granted. That's why he ate slowly to savor each and every bite.

    But he didn't really seem like he was enjoying himself much right now.

    He had a bitter expression on his face as if he was forcing himself to eat.

    Why did he have to force himself to eat? Was it because he was simply trying to stay alive?

    It was late into the night.

    A single person sat facing a lonely candle, slowly sipping on porridge.

    If you never saw it for yourself, you wouldn't realize how sad and lonely this scene was.

    The door slowly swung open.

    Lin XianEr stood in the doorway looking at him.

    The instant that she saw Ah Fei, she felt an incredible warmth flood through her entire body.

    She didn't even know herself that she was capable of feeling this way.

    Because her blood had always been cold.

    Ah Fei didn't notice that someone had come into the house. His head was still lowered slowly sipping on that bowl of porridge. The porridge seemed like the only thing that was relevant in the entire world.

    But the muscles in her face looked like like they had stiffened.

    Lin XianEr couldn't help but call out softly, "Little Fei ..."

    Her voice was still as soft and sweet as ever.

    Ah Fei finally started to lift his head and looked at her.

    His eyes were still very bright, was it because of tears?

    Lin XianEr seemed a little teary-eyed as well, "Little Fei, I've returned ..."

    Ah Fei didn't move, nor did he speak.

    He looked like he had been frozen still and was unable to move at all.

    She slowly walked towards him and said, "I knew that you would be waiting for me, because I've finally realized that you're the only one who is truly good to me in this world."

    She didn't use any tricks this time.

    She actually spoke from the heart. Her feelings for Ah Fei were real.

    "I see now that everyone else was just using me ... and that I was just using them as well. I really never minded that they were just using me. But no matter how bad I treated you, you were still always true to me." Lin XianEr said.

    She didn't notice the change on Ah Fei's face.

    Because she was getting closer and closer to him, so close that she didn't see clearly what she should have been seeing.

    "I've decided that I'm never going to deceive you ever again, and that I won't hurt you ever again. No matter what it is that you want, I will listen, and I will promise ..." Lin XianEr said.

    *PENG*, the chopsticks in Ah Fei's hands suddenly snapped.

    Lin XianEr took his hand and placed it on top of her chest.

    Her voice was sweeter than honey.

    "I really have wronged you in the past. I will try my best to make it up to you in the future. I want you to feel that no matter how well you treat me, that it was all worth it in the end." Lin XianEr said.

    Her chest was warm and soft.

    Anyone who put their hands on her chest would not be able to take it off.

    But Ah Fei suddenly pulled his hand away.

    A wave of shock suddenly shot through her eyes, "You ... you ... don't want me anymore?"

    Ah Fei just looked at her silently, as if it was the very first time that he had ever seen her.

    "Everything I've said to you is the truth. Although I've been with other men in the past ... I've never felt anything for any of them before, it was all fake ..."

    Her voice suddenly stopped, because she finally saw the look on Ah Fei's face.

    Ah Fei looked like he wanted to vomit.

    Lin XianEr took two steps backwards and said, "You ... you don't like it when I tell the truth? Would you rather me lie to you again?"

    Ah Fei looked straight at her for a long while and then said, "There's one thing that I find very strange."

    "What?" Lin XianEr said.

    Ah Fei slowly stood up and said slowly and clearly, "How I ever fell in love with a woman like you!"

    Lin XianEr felt her entire body freeze still.

    Ah Fei didn't say another word.

    He didn't have to say anything else, that one sentence was enough.

    That one sentence was enough to send Lin XianEr into the bottomless abyss.

    Ah Fei slowly walked out.

    A person who suffers an innumerable amount of pain, insult and ridicule definitely will not just keep taking it.

    A person can tolerate lies, but a person can only tolerate so much insult - that is the case for women, and it is the same for men.

    It is the same for a wife, and the same for a husband.

    Lin XianEr just felt her heart sinking, and sinking ...

    Ah Fei had already opened the door.

    Lin XianEr suddenly turned around and threw herself at his feet, she pulled at his sleeves and said sobbingly, "How can you just leave me like this ... you're all I have left now ..."

    But Ah Fei did not turn around.

    He slowly took off the shirt that she was pulling onto.

    He walked out barechested into the rain.

    The rain was very cold.

    But the rain was very clean.

    He had finally let go of Lin XianEr, he had finally freed himself of the shackles that held his heart. It was like he had finally thrown away an old and worn out shirt.

    Lin XianEr was still clenching firmly onto that shirt, because she knew that there really was nothing else that she could hold onto.

    "In the end you'll realize that you have nothing, and that your life is completely empty ..."

    Her tears started to flow.

    At that point she finally realized that she had been in love with Ah Fei all along.

    Perhaps she tormented him because she loved him, and because she knew that he loved her.

    "Why do women choose to torment the men that they loved most?"

    She only realized now just how important Ah Fei was to her.

    Because now, she had lost him.

    "Why do women take things so lightly, only realizing how important they are when they've lost it?"

    Perhaps men are like this as well.

    Lin XianEr started laughing madly as she tore Ah Fei's shirt to pieces.

    "What am I afraid of, I'm still young and beautiful - as long as I want I can have as many men as I want ... I can have ten different men a day."

    She was laughing, but her laughter was more sorrowful than tears.

    Because she knew that altough men were easy to come by, 'true love' could not be bought with beauty and youth.

    What was Lin XianEr's fate?

    Nobody knows.

    She seemingly disappeared from this world.


    Two, three years later in ChangAn's most famous brothel, there appeared an extremely unique prostitute. She didn't ask for money, all she wanted was men.

    Rumors say that she serviced at least ten men a day.

    At first a lot of men were very interested in her, but as time passed the men that came to her were less and less.

    It wasn't simply because she aged very quickly, but because people slowly realized that she wasn't human. She was a mother wolf that devoured men whole.

    Not only did she enjoy breaking her men, the torture that she inflicted upon herself was even more vicious.

    Some people claimed that she was once 'the most beautiful woman in the world', Lin XianEr.

    But she herself never admitted to it.

    Several years later, in one of the most rundown slums in ChangAn, there appeared another peculiar woman who had become rather famous.

    She was famous not because of her beauty, but because of her ugliness, her unbelievable ugliness.

    The funny part was that when she was drunk she would often proclaim that she was 'the most beautiful woman in the world'.

    Of course no one believed her.


    The rain was freezing cold.

    Although the cold rain soaked Ah Fei from head to toe, he felt extremely refreshed. Because that cold rain made him realize that he wasn't a piece of dead lumber. It was the first time in two years that he felt so alive.

    In addition, he felt very relieved, as if a huge weight had been lifted from his shoulders.

    There was someone calling out to him in the distance, "Ah Fei ..."

    The voice was very low, he probably wouldn't have heard it a couple of days ago.

    But now, his eyes were no longer blind, and his ears were no longer deaf.

    He stopped and asked, "Who is it?"

    A person rushed over towards him, two long pigtails, one big pair of eyes.

    It was a beautiful young girl, she looked slightly beat up and tired.

    Sun XiaoHong had finally found him.

    She ran up to his face and said, panting, "You don't recognize me anymore ..."

    Ah Fei interrupted her and said, "I remember you, I saw you once two years ago. You were really good at talking. I also saw you two days ago, but you didn't say a word."

    Sun XiaoHong smiled and said, "It looks like your memory is pretty good."

    Her heart felt very relieved, because she noticed that Ah Fei was standing, and he was standing very tall.

    "Some people can still get up no matter how many times they've been knocked down."

    Li XunHuan and Ah Fei really were kindred spirits, she thought to herself.

    He knew what she would ask.

    But she didn't say anything, she just didn't know how to put it.

    "Feel free to say anything you want, because you are Li XunHuan's friend." Ah Fei said.

    "Have you seen her?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Yes." Ah Fei said.

    "Where is she?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "She has nothing to do with me, why would you ask me for?" Ah Fei said.

    In the past, whenever somebody would bring up Lin XianEr, he would always feel an indescribable giddiness, even her name had a strange hold on him.

    But now he seemed very calm.

    Sun XiaoHong stared at him and then let out a sigh of relief, "So you really have escaped from your shackles."

    "My shackles?" Ah Fei said.

    "Everyone has their own cage and shackles, but only a few people in this world can free themselves from them." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I don't understand." Ah Fei said.

    "You don't have to understand, just as long as you can do it." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Ah Fei was quiet for a long while and then said, "I understand now."

    "You really do understand? ... Then let me ask you, how did you free yourself from those shackles?"

    Ah Fei paused for a long time, then smiled and said, "I had a sudden revelation."

    'A sudden revelation', although this sounded very simple, to do so in actuality was quite hard.

    When the Buddha achieved Enlightenment under the Bodhi tree, he had a sudden revelation as well.

    Bodhidharma meditated for nine years before he had a sudden revelation.

    Whatever the case was, when you had a sudden revelation, your mind will be freed from its troubles. But before reaching that point, your mind was bound to experience countless trials and adversity.

    "You must have suffered greatly before you had come to your revelation." Sun XiaoHong said.

    Ah Fei didn't seem to want to talk about that anymore and suddenly asked, "Did he tell you to come look for me?"

    "No." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Where is he?" Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong fell silent. Her smile disappeared as well.

    "How is he right now?" Ah Fei asked urgently.

    Sun XiaoHong's expression sunk as she said, "Honestly speaking, I have no idea where he is right now, and I have no idea whether he is dead or alive either ..."

    Ah Fei's face changed colors, "What do you mean by that?"

    "I know that I can probably find him, but his life ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "What about his life?" Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong looked at him and said, "His life and death rests solely in your hands!"

  7. #87
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 85 - Who Was At Fault?

    It was raining outside but completely dry inside the house. There was a single small window that was very high up from the ground.

    That window was always closed. Sunlight rarely shined through and rain never poured in.

    The walls were coated with paint so thick and white that no one could tell whether the walls were made of earth and clay or iron and metal. But one thing that was very apparent was that these walls were extremely thick, thick enough to border off the world outside.

    Besides two beds and a large table, there was nothing else in that house. No chairs or stools, not even a single cup could be found.

    The house and its surroundings seemed more frugal and ascetic than the abode of a monk.

    Who could have ever guessed that the wealthiest, most influential, and most powerful person in the pugilistic world, Chief ShangGuan JinHong actually lived in a place like this?

    But Li XunHuan couldn't bother to be surprised.

    ShangGuan JinHong stood right next to him and said, "Is this place satisfactory?"

    "At least it is dry." Li XunHuan said with a forced smile.

    "It is indeed very dry. I can guarantee that you won't even find a single drop of water here." ShangGuan JinHong said, "Tea, wine, and water has never been served here before. Not even a single tear has ever been shed here."

    "What about blood? Has anyone ever bled here before?" Li XunHuan said.

    "Never - even if somebody wanted to die in this place, they would've bled themselves dry before ever reaching the door." ShangGuan JinHong said, "If I didn't want someone entering this house, whether they're dead or alive, there's no way that they would ever get in."

    Li XunHuan let out a slight laugh and said, "Honestly speaking, living in a place like this can't be comfortable at all. But dying here wouldn't be that bad."

    "Oh?" ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Because this place is like a grave anyway." Li XunHuan said.

    "Since it is to your liking, I will bury you right here." ShangGuan JinHong said with a sadistic smile on his face. He pointed to the ground with his foot and continued, "I will bury you right under here so that when I stand on top of this spot everyday knowing that Li TanHua is under my foot, I will feel very refreshed."

    "Refreshed?" Li XunHuan asked with a furrowed brow.

    "Because if I don't stay refreshed, I might wind up under someone else's foot. But once I remember your situation, I'll be reminded to stay alert." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "But if a person is alert and refreshed for too long, it will undoubtedly bring about pain." Li XunHuan said.

    "I've never felt a single ounce of pain. Never in my entire life." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "This is because you've never been happy before either ... I really wonder sometimes, just what exactly are you living for?" Li XunHuan said.

    ShangGuan JinHong's eyes flickered as he looked deep in thought, after a while he responded, "Some people really have no idea what they're living for. But even worse are those who don't even know what they will have died for."

    "Hmm?" Li XunHuan said.

    ShangGuan JinHong looked at him and said, "Such as you, you won't have any idea what you died for."

    "Actually, I never really wanted to know in the first place." Li XunHuan said.

    "You don't." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Because I've already realized that death isn't that big of a deal." Li XunHuan said.

    He didn't wait for ShangGuan JinHong's reponse and continued, "In your eyes, I'm already a dead person anyway, right?"

    "You really do know yourself well." ShangGuan JinHong said.

    "Since my death cannot be avoided, why bother letting anything bother or worry me?" Li XunHuan said.

    He suddenly sat down on the ground and sprawled himself out comfortably. With a smile, he said, "If I wanted to sit right now, I can sit, and if I wanted to close my eyes, I could close my eyes. Can you do the same?"

    ShangGuan JinHong clenched his fists.

    "Of course you can't because you still have lots to worry about, you still have to be wary of me." Li XunHuan said.

    "At the very least, I am much more comfortable than you right now." Li XunHuan said.

    ShangGuan JinHong smiled and said, "Since I promised not to let you die all all damp and wet, I had planned to make a move once your clothes had dried. But I've changed my mind now."

    "Oh?" Li XunHuan said.

    "Not only am I going to give you a fresh set of clothes, I'm also going to give you a jar of wine. Because the words you speak are a real pleasure to my ears, to be able to hear such words coming from a dead person really delights me." ShangGuan JinHong said.


    Long Xiao3Yun laid curled up in a bed fast asleep. There were several damp and muddy footprints on the floor.

    A lamp was lit but the dim light made the inn look even gloomier and completely devoid of life.

    Lin ShiYin slowly opened the door and walked inside.

    A mother's footsteps were always light. She would rather not sleep the entire night than risk waking up her child from a peaceful slumber.

    But Long Xiao3Yun was no longer a child anymore, he was more worldly and mature than most people in the world. But when he was sleeping he still looked like an innocent child.

    His face was still so young, so pale, and so thin. No matter what he had done, he was still just a lonely, helpless little child, still confused and bewildered by the large world around him.

    Lin ShiYin walked up to the bed and stared at him intently, she felt a certain bitterness in her heart.

    This was her only child, her own flesh and blood, her only comfort in this world.

    In the past she would have rather died than to ever part with him.

    But now ...

    Lin ShiYin lifted up her lamp and kept turning back to look at him.

    "I just want to look at him a little longer, just a little longer, because in the future ..."

    She was afraid to think about the future, she didn't want to think about the future.

    Tears erupted from her soft eyes.

    Even though Long Xiao3Yun's eyes were shut very tightly, tears started to flow as well.

    His body started to shake. Was it because of the cold? Or was he having a nightmare?

    Lin ShiYin bent over and wanted to tuck him under his covers tightly.

    She suddenly realized that the blanket was wet, Long Xiao3Yun's clothes were soaked as well.

    Lin ShiYin was slightly startled but after settling down, she said, "So you have went out as well."

    Long Xiao3Yun's eyes and mouth were still shut very tightly.

    "Were you following behind me the entire time?" Lin ShiYin asked.

    Long Xiao3Yun finally nodded his head.

    "So you heard everything I said before?" Lin ShiYin asked.

    Long Xiao3Yun suddenly took out an oilpaper wrapped package from under the covers and said loudly, "Take it."

    Lin ShiYin knitted her brow and replied, "What is this?"

    "You really don't know what this is? Didn't you decide to come back just to get this?" Long Xiao3Yun said.

    A look of sadness swept over Lin ShiYin as she said, "I ... I came back to see you."

    "If it wasn't for this, would you have still come back to see me?" Long Xiao3Yun said.

    He suddenly opened his eyes and stared at his mother.

    A look of sadness swept over Long Xiao3Yun as well as he said, "You've already decided to leave me, if it weren't for this, you would have left a long time ago."

    "You're right, I have decided to go to a far away place. But I ..." Lin ShiYin said.

    Long Xiao3Yun cut her off and said, "You don't even have to tell me, I know where you're planning to go."

    "You know?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "You're going to save Li XunHuan right?" Long Xiao3Yun said.

    Lin ShiYin was startled again.

    "You're preparing to use this 'LianHua Compendium' to go save Li XunHuan aren't you?" Long Xiao3Yun said.

    He held the package in front of him and said, "So why haven't you taken it yet? Why haven't you left yet?"

    Lin ShiYin's body started to waver back and forth as if she could no longer support herself up.

    "Once you show this 'LianHua Compendium', ShangGuan JinHong will definitely come to see you, because he is also a practitioner of the martial arts, he wouldn't be able to resist his curiousity." Long Xiao3Yun said.

    He gnawed on his teeth and said, "You're planning on using this opportunity to save him, because you know that dealing with ShangGuan JinHong won't be an easy task. So your whole goal is to stall him with this for as long as possible so that Li XunHuan can live on just a little longer, and so that Ah Fei with have just a little longer to rush to his aid."

    Lin ShiYin had nothing to say.

    Long Xiao3Yun was indeed a smart child, his every word mirrored her every thought.

    So now she was left speechless.

    "Li XunHuan really is good to you. Such that even if you were to throw away your own child, and even your own life for him, no one could say that you were wrong to do so." Long Xiao3Yun said.

    He started to tremble even more as he continued, "But have you ever thought about anyone else? Have you ever thought about me? I'm your SON ... I ... I ..."

    Lin ShiYin felt as if her heart was being pierced by needles. She couldn't help but take her son's hand and said, "Of course I've thought about you. I ..."

    Long Xiao3Yun pushed her away forcefully and shouted, "Of course you've thought about me, you want me to go with you to meet with them tomorrow morning right? Seeing as to how you're going to throw your life away for them, of course they're going to treat very well and take care of me."

    He continued, "But how do you know that you can definitely save him? If you were to die in front of him, he'd be in even more disarray. And even if Ah Fei could rush there to save him in time, he probably wouldn't last until then."

    Lin ShiYin started to tremble as well.

    "And even if he was able to survive, and even if he was willing to take care of me, there's still no way that I would follow him, I don't even want to lay my eyes on him!" Long Xiao3Yun said.

    "Why?" Lin ShiYin asked.

    "Because I hate him!" Long Xiao3Yun said.

    "But you've already learned ..." Lin ShiYin said.

    Long Xiao3Yun cut her off and said, "I don't hate him for destroying my martial arts."

    "Then why do you hate him for?" Lin ShiYin said.

    "I hate him for not being my father, why couldn't he have been MY father! Why couldn't I have been his son? If he was my father, he would have never left me, everything would have been so much better!" Long Xiao3Yun said.

    He suddenly fell to the floor and started crying his eyes out.

    Lin ShiYin's heart shattered, her entire body fell to pieces.

    She felt as if she couldn't stand up anymore and she fell down onto a chair that was behind her.

    "If only this child were his son, if only he were my husband ..."

    She had never even dared to entertain that thought, but deep down inside her heart, how could she not have secretly craved for it?

    The child of an unhappy couple will only be even more unhappy and suffer even more pain.

    But fault lies only with the parents, not with the child. Why did he have to follow them in enduring punishment and suffering?

    Lin ShiYin pulled herself up and walked over beside her son. Tears rained down as she said, "Son, I have really wronged you ... I have really wronged you ... With parents like us, it must have been extremely difficult being our son ..."

    A sad and decrepit voice suddenly rang from outside the window.

    "You have done nothing wrong. I am the one who is at fault."

    Long Xiao4Yun.

    No one would have ever guessed that he would ever look so distressed and worn out.

    He stood at the door, scared to even take a step inside.

    Long Xiao3Yun lifted his head and his lips moved as if he were about to call out, "Father."

    But not a single sound came out!

    Long Xiao4Yun sighed and said, "I know that you're not even willing to accept me as your father."

    He turned to Lin ShiYin and said, "And I know that you're not willing to accept me as your husband. My life really is pointless."

    "You ..." Lin ShiYin said.

    He didn't let her continue and said, "But I have always tried my hardest to be a good father, and to be a good husband. But it looks like I've failed, it looks like I've done everything wrong."

    Lin ShiYin stared at him.

    He had always been a solemn and strict man, always full of vigor and energy.

    But what about now?

    Feelings of pity suddenly rushed through her as she said, "I've wronged you as well. I haven't been a very good wife at all."

    Long Xiao4Yun let out a laugh, a very sorrowful laugh, and said, "That's not your fault, everything really is my fault. If I had never met you, if I had never met Li XunHuan, everything wouldn't have turned out like this. Everyone would have been happy and prosperous."

    Was his own fate completely changed by that incident?

    If he had never met Li XunHuan, would he have never turned out the way he did?

    Lin ShiYin started to weep as she said, "Regardless of what you've done, it was all for the sake of protecting this family, it was all for the sake of protecting your wife. So ... you really weren't at fault. There's no way that I can blame you."

    "But if both of us are not at fault, then who was at fault?" Long Xiao4Yun said.

    Lin ShiYin stared out the window into the rainy night. "Who was at fault ... ? Who was at fault ... ?"

    She didn't have an answer.

    No one had an answer.

    There are some things in this world which humans will never understand and will never have an answer for.

    "I originally didn't plan on seeing you two again. Since you had left this time, I had figured that you were leaving me for good. That is why I didn't want to bother to urge or beg you to stay, because ..." Long Xiao4Yun said.

    He let out a long sigh as tears started to fall, "I know that the things I have done not only have hurt you, but have disappointed you as well. But I just couldn't help but follow the two of you. Even if it was just to glance an eye at you from a distance, I was satisfied."

    Lin ShiYin burst into tears and cried, "Please, don't say anymore ... please ..."

    Long Xiao4Yun nodded his head and said, "I really shouldn't say anymore, because anything I say right now is already too late."

    "You know that I owe him too much, I can't just watch as he dies." Lin ShiYin said.

    "I owe him too, I owe him much more. That's why there are things that you should let me do instead." Long Xiao4Yun said.

    It seemed as if he had made up his mind as he strode over.

    "What ... what do you want to do? Don't tell me ..." Lin ShiYin said.

    Long Xiao4Yun suddenly sealed her pressure points. "You can't die, you shouldn't die, I'm the one who should die. The longer I live, the more that everyone will suffer. If I died instead, all of you will be much better off."

    He grabbed the 'LianHua Compendium' and rushed out of the door.

    In the distance, his voice could be heard shouting, "Son, take good care of your mother. As for this no good father of yours ... it really doesn't matter whether or not you will accept me."

    Long Xiao3Yun's eyes were wide opened as he stared out into the rain.

    He was no longer crying.

    But the look in his eyes was even more depressing than tears.

    After who knows how long, he suddenly shouted out loud, "I accept you, you're the only one who can be my father! And you're the only one I'd ever accept as my father! Other than you, there's no one else, no one else ..."

    This was the remorse shown from a child to his father. It was a bond that was shared between a father and a son, something that nothing in the world could replace.

    It is a pity that the father will never hear those words.

    All humans have moments of sudden realization.

    Did he have that realization because he was forced into a deadend situation? Or was it that he felt genuine respect?

    Blood is thicker than water.

    Only blood can wash away shame and hatred.

    Life eventually has to end in blood.

    But life also begins in blood.

  8. #88
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 86 - Washing Away One's Crimes With Blood

    A broad and expansive courtyard.

    This courtyard looked no different from any other wealthy family's courtyard.

    But as soon as you laid foot onto the steps leading up to the grand doors, you would undoubtedly feel a gloomy sense of death.

    Long Xiao4Yun had already made his way up those steps.

    Everything was deathly silent in the small courtyard, not a single person could be seen. But as soon as he laid a single foot on those steps, a large group of people suddenly appeared.

    Eighteen men clothed in yellow, Long Xiao4Yun had no way of seeing their faces.

    But that was of no importance, he had no reason to try to differentiate between their faces - the members of the Gold Currency Union were almost all exactly alike.

    They didn't have mouths, because they didn't need to speak. Even when they did speak, it was ShangGuan JinHong's voice that came out.

    They didn't have eyes, because they didn't need to see. Whatever they saw was whatever ShangGuan JinHong wanted them to see.

    They only had a small set of ears, because the only sound they needed to hear was ShangGuan JinHong's voice.

    They didn't seem to have souls either, but that made them much quicker. In an instant they had surrounded Long Xiao4Yun.

    Long Xiao4Yun took in a deep breath and said, "So it seems that the headquarters of the Golden Currency Union really is here."

    "Who are you? What are you doing here?" someone said.

    "I'm looking for someone." Long Xiao4Yun said.

    "Who are you looking for?" someone said.

    "Has your Chief ShangGuan JinHong returned yet?" Long Xiao4Yun said.

    The words 'ShangGuan JinHong' seemed to have some strange hold over them, as soon as they heard it, their manners immediately changed.

    "The chief has returned, you are ..."

    "I want to see him, there is something that I wish to present to him." Long Xiao4Yun said.

    "Please wait awhile, the Chief isn't taking visitors at the moment."

    Long Xiao4Yun let out a sigh and said, "Is he inside with Li XunHuan at the moment?"


    "Then I must see him now." Long Xiao4Yun said.

    "May we know your honorable name?"

    "My surname is Long, I have something extremely important to give to him right now. If you mess up this important matter, will you be able to shoulder the blame for it?"

    "Your surname is Long ... are you the one who had become sworn brothers with our Chief several days ago?"

    "Yes." Long XiaoYun said.

    As soon as the word 'yes' had left his mouth, a cold flash of light flew by.

    A single sabre and two longswords flashed towards him at the same time.

    "What is the meaning of this?" Long Xiao4Yun exclaimed.

    Although his voice was loud and clear, no one was listening anymore, and no one bothered to respond to him.

    Long Xiao4Yun let out a roar and brandished his fists.

    His martial arts were not weak, his fists were powerful and quick. A single punch carried the ferocity of a tiger.

    But he only had a pair of fists.

    The enemy had twenty two pairs of weapons - including hooks, twin swords, twin whips and twin brushes.

    The brush was the shortest, but it was also the most dangerous. The person who wielded it was the successor of the legendary 'Life and Death Sword', a famed accupoint striking martial art. This person's ranking in the 'Book of Weapons' was definitely not lower than that of 'Rain and Wind Meteor Hammer' Xiang Song.

    The sword was a 'Pine Streak' sword. Intent was hidden inside its techniques. Its moves were desperate, and its intent preceded the sword.

    Among the practitioners of the sword in the world, there weren't more than ten people who were better than him.

    The most vicious was the sabre.

    A 'Nine-Ringed Sabre', the sound of the rings shook the soul. After seven strikes of the sabre came out, Long Xiao4Yun was caught in the cage of the sabre's wind.

    The 'Judge's Brush' had also struck one of Long Xiao4Yun's accupoints.

    There were no sounds of breathing, there were moans of pain.

    Because his throat had been penetrated, all sounds that tried to escape were cut off.

    There was only blood.

    Blood shot out from his throat like an arrow.

    He fell to the floor.

    Blood sprayed all over his own body.

    He died before he could even close his eyes.

    His eyes were still staring at them, his eyeballs were protruding out.

    Although he had come asking for death, why didn't they even let him see ShangGuan JinHong for just a moment?

    Because 'Kill Long Xiao4Yun on sight!" was his direct order!

    Because no one was allowed to set a single foot inside the courtyard!

    That was also ShangGuan JinHong's decree!

    ShangGuan JinHong's orders were always as firm as mountains!

    The 'LianHua Compendium' fell out and was soaked red by the blood.

    No one cast a single eye on it.

    Who would ever be interested in the possessions of someone like Long Xiao4Yun?

    So this mysterious 'LianHua Compendium' fell to the same fate as many other mystical martial arts manuals, it was lost forever.

    Was this the fortune that befell the hands of man? Or was it a misfortune?

    The book was gathered along with Long Xiao4Yun's corpse and carried away.

    The members of the Golden Currency Union were experts at getting rid of dead bodies. They had a very simple yet peculiar way of disposing with corpses.

    Humans really were very peculiar.

    They will go out of their way to the greatest lengths to obtain certain things, but when that thing is right under their noses, they would never even realize it.

    Was this the foolishness of mankind? Or was it wisdom?


    Ah Fei had no sword in his hand.

    But that was of no importance, because he was suddenly filled with courage and confidence.

    There was a bamboo forest by the side of the road, standing where he was, he could see the courtyard of the Golden Currency Union.

    Ah Fei broke off one of the sticks of bamboo and split it down the middle into three pieces. He sharpened one end and wrapped a piece of cloth around the other end.

    His movements were swift and accurate, he didn't waste a single ounce of energy.

    His hands were very steady.

    Sun XiaoHong watched quietly by his side. She found it very strange and interesting.

    But she couldn't help but feel some doubt. She picked up the bamboo sword in her hand and it felt as light as a willow leaf.

    She couldn't help but exclaim, "Can such a sword be enough to deal with ShangGuan JinHong?"

  9. #89
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 87 - Rebirth

    Ah Fei was quiet for a few moments and then replied, "No type of sword is good enough for dealing with ShangGuan JinHong."

    Sun XiaoHong thought for a second and replied, "Then ... what do we have to do to defeat him?"

    Ah Fei didn't answer her.

    Ah Fei knew what had to be done to defeat him but the words just wouldn't come out.

    There are many words in this world that just won't come out.

    Sun XiaoHong let out a sigh and said, "You're going to have to deal with a lot of other people in addition to ShangGuan JinHong as well."

    "I only want to know, are you certain that ShangGuan JinHong has returned to this place?" Ah Fei asked.

    "I'm pretty sure that my guesses are correct." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Why is that?" Ah Fei said.

    "Because he can do anything he wants here without being seen." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "To be able to defeat Li XunHuan should be a glorious thing, why would he not want anyone to see him?" Ah Fei asked.

    "When a person is indulging in something that he really enjoys, he won't want to be seen by others." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I don't understand." Ah Fei said.

    "What do you like to eat the most?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I like everything just as much." Ah Fei replied.

    "My favorite are walnuts, every time that I get to eat walnuts, I feel like I'm in paradise. Especially on a cold winter night, I love hiding all alone and eating walnuts." Sun XiaoHong said.

    She giggled and continued, "But if there were people beside me watching as I ate, that pleasure would simply not be as great."

    "You think that ShangGuan JinHong sees killing Li XunHuan as some sort of pleasure to be enjoyed?" Ah Fei said.

    "That's why I'm pretty sure that ShangGuan JinHong won't be very quick to kill him." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Why is that?" Ah Fei said.

    "If I only had one walnut, of course I would try to eat it as slow as possible. The slower I ate it, the longer that my pleasure will be drawn out for. Because I know it'll be somewhat difficult to bear once it is finished." Sun XiaoHong said.

    That feeling was more like emptiness.

    But she could never let the word 'emptiness' come out from her mouth.

    She continued, "In ShangGuan JinHong's eyes, there is only one Li XunHuan in this world. And after he kills him, he will definitely have that same feeling that I have after eating my last walnut. But I'm sure that his will be much more difficult to endure."

    Ah Fei slowly inserted the bamboo sword into his waist belt, he suddenly smiled and said, "I don't think it will be very hard for me to bear after I kill him."

    Before those words were even finished he had already leapt away.

    He didn't run very fast because he wanted to be prepared - when dealing with someone like ShangGuan JinHong, preparation was key.

    As he made his way toward the courtyard, he would slowly tense his arms and legs and then slowly relax them. This was definitely a very good way to prepare himself.

    He finally made his way up the steps and to the door.

    Suddenly, people appeared out of nowhere - eighteen people clothed in yellow.

    They were the first line of defense of the main branch of the Golden Currency Union, so of course their skills were all top-notch.

    Ah Fei took in a deep breath and said, "Although I don't want to kill, I won't tolerate anyone blocking my path either."

    A cold voice shouted, "I recognize you! And what if we do block your path?"

    "Then you'll die!" Ah Fei said.

    The voice laughed and said, "You couldn't even kill a dog!"

    "I don't kill dogs, but then you're not a dog!" Ah Fei replied

    There was no flash of light, because the bamboo sword didn't reflect light.

    But that bamboo sword could still kill - in Ah Fei's hands it could kill!

    Before that person could even finish laughing, the bamboo sword had already punctured his throat.

    But now, the bamboo sword started to glisten.

    It glistened with fresh blood!

    A Judge's Brush, Twin Hooks, a Nine-Ringed Sabre, and five other weapons shot out at Ah Fei with great force!

    Two sharp sabres swung towards the sword in his hands.

    Sun XiaoHong was slightly worried, she knew that Ah Fei's battle experience wasn't very great. He was always used to facing opponents one-on-one. Rarely was he ever attacked by a large group of assailants.

    His sword was fast enough to deal with a single opponent, but was it fast enough to deal with so many at once?

    Sun XiaoHong wanted to rush over to help him.

    But before she could even move, she saw three people fall to the ground.

    She could've sworn that the twin sabres had cut into the bamboo sword but for some reason Ah Fei wasn't the one who fell to the ground!

    Only the person wielding the Judge's Brush knew the reason behind this.

    His accupoint striking technique was always accurate, and it was always extremely forceful. Even he thought that he had landed a hit on Ah Fei.

    But as soon as the brush in his hands was about to hit Ah Fei, he suddenly felt all his strength disappear.

    The bamboo sword had already penetrated into his throat.

    Ah Fei wasn't that much faster than him, but he was faster by an instant.

    But that single instant was all that it took.

    Sun XiaoHong finally threw herself into the battle. Her body fluttered about like a graceful butterfly.

    Among the female experts in the realm, there were many who were skilled in lightness and hidden projectiles, disciplines which required little skill and strength. It was very rare to see a female expert who had deep internal energy and powerful palm strikes.

    Sun XiaoHong was not an exception.

    Her hidden weapons were shot out extremely fast, but her movements were even faster. The positions of her steps were strange and complex, it made her almost impossible to catch.

    She still believed that Ah Fei's sword was only meant for attacking a single opponent and was inadequate for dealing with groups.

    The way that Ah Fei used his sword was very unique. It was completely different from every school of swordsmanship.

    Because his moves didn't contain any slashes or strikes, only thrusts.

    And thrusts could only thrust forward.

    But for some reason Ah Fei was able to thrust in every direction, and he could thrust from any position!

    His thrusts could originate from his chest, his legs, or even his ears!

    He could thrust forward and back, and left or right!

    Suddenly, a person rolled towards him from behind, as a flurry of blades flew out.

    A 'Ground-Riding Sabre'!

    This sabre technique was extremely difficult to master, but if one was able to master it, its power was immeasurable.

    But Ah Fei seemingly had eyes in the back of his head. He dodged a spear that shot towards him, and released a backhanded thrust from below his waist and struck the 'Ground-Riding Sabre' practitioner in the throat!

    At that instant, another person flew out from behind the spear user. With a weapon in each hand, he unleashed a move called 'Pushing Forth the Mountain' towards Ah Fei. His moves were peculiar and his weapons were even more peculiar.

    His weapons were a pair of 'Phoenix Wing Golden Cudgels'.

    This type of weaponry was extremely rare, the club was lined with spikes. Although one would normally push the clubs at an enemy, one could also lift and impale an enemy on its end at the same time.

    Anyone unlucky enough to be struck by its attack would immediately be torn to pieces.

    Ah Fei should have leapt backwards to avoid the attack.

    But if he did, he would've lost the initiative and several other weapons might have taken his life!

    Yet he couldn't attack head-on either, the 'Phoenix Wing Golden Cudgels' would've ripped him apart.

    This was obvious to any observer.

    But just as it seemed that Ah Fei was at a lost over what to do, his body suddenly leapt up into the air.

    Sun XiaoHong caught a glimpse of him in the corner of her eye and let out a silent gasp.

    In that exact moment, Ah Fei's sword thrusted downwards from his legs. The twin cudgels struck upwards at the same time.

    *CHI*, the tip of his sword slid itself into his opponent's throat.

    The 'Phoenix Wing Golden Cudgels' were inches away from Ah Fei's chest. But the person wielding them suddenly felt a strange sensation in his throat as he collapsed to the floor. Even with all his strength he couldn't push the cudgels upwards another inch.

    His eyeballs almost jumped out of their sockets as he felt himself losing all control over the muscles in his body. Everything from his legs down suddenly felt cold as feces and urine gushed out from his bowels. His legs buckled as he crumbled to the floor.

    Only a terrified look of surprise remained on his face.

    He just couldn't believe that there existed such a swift and precise sword in this world.

    But now, there was no way that he could deny it!

    Suddenly, silence blanketed every direction, no one made another move.

    Everyone just stared blankly at the gruesome death that befell the 'Phoenix Wing Golden Cudgels' expert. Everyone smelled the foul odor that emanated from his body.

    Some people had the unstoppable urge to vomit when their stomachs started to turn.

    But these people didn't throw up because of the foul smell, rather they threw up because of fear. It was as if they had just discovered how horrifying and disgusting 'death' could be.

    It wasn't that they were afraid of death, it was just that dying in this manner was simply unbearable.

    Ah Fei didn't make another move either, he made his way out of the crowd of people.

    There were nine of them left and all their eyes were focused on Ah Fei as we walked past them.
    One of them suddenly bent down and threw up. Another one started to cry out loud. And yet another one fell to the ground as his body started to convulse.

    One of them even turned and fled to the nearest toilet.

    And how could Sun XiaoHong not want to vomit and cry also? Not only did her heart fill with fear, but sadness as well. She just couldn't comprehend how human life could suddenly become so worthless and despicable.

    Ah Fei simply walked forward, with sword in hand.

    Drops of blood dripped down from the tip.

    This sword not only could rob a person of his life, but also strip a person of his dignity.

    The sword was really that ruthless!

    But what about the swordsman?

    A large door met him at the end of the path.

    The door was shut tight. It was bound from the inside as well.

    This was ShangGuan JinHong's private quarters. He was waiting inside, as was Li XunHuan.

    ShangGuan JinHong hadn't come out yet, which must have meant that Li XunHuan hadn't died yet either.

    Sun XiaoHong was filled with glee as she rushed over to the front of the door.

    But suddenly her entire body stiffened up!

    The door was made of iron and at least a foot thick. No one in the entire world could ever knock it down.

    And of course ShangGuan JinHong wouldn't conveniently open the door from the inside either.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly started to feel dizzy, as if she had just stepped on air and was about to fall into a bottomless abyss!

    She couldn't stand up anymore as she collapsed onto the door and burst out in tears.

    Her plan had been foiled. All of her efforts were completely wasted.

    It would have been better if something had went wrong in the beginning. But to come so close and then having your hopes crushed was simply heart-wrenching.

    This kind of disappointment was the most difficult kind to endure.

    Ah Fei who had been standing quietly suddenly started to scream like a wild beast as he charged at full speed at the iron door.

    He bounced off and fell to the floor as he hit the door. But Ah Fei suddenly got up again and thrust forward with his sword at the door with all his strength.

    The bamboo sword snapped.

    No sword in the world could have penetrated this iron door, much less a sword made out of bamboo!

  10. #90
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 88 - Victory and Defeat

    Ah Fei's legs buckled as he fell to the floor and started to twitch. He suddenly felt as if they no longer had any alternatives, it was a feeling that always drove him insane.

    But it was useless for him to throw a fit right now.

    Li XunHuan was behind these iron doors slowly being tortured with the agony of death.

    And all they could do was wait helplessly from the outside.

    But what exactly were they waiting for? Were they waiting for ShangGuan JinHong to open those doors?

    The moment that ShangGuan JinHong stepped out of those doors would mean that Li XunHuan was no longer alive.

    What exactly were they waiting for? They were only waiting for certain death.

    There was no way that ShangGuan JinHong would spare their lives. The moment that ShangGuan JinHong stepped out of those doors would also be the moment that guaranteed their deaths.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly rushed over and tried to pull Ah Fei to his feet.

    "Hurry up and escape." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "You're ... you're telling me to run?" Ah Fei said.

    "There's nothing else that you can do right now, I ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Then what about you?" Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong bit down on her lips and thought for a long while before lowering her head and said, "But I'm different from you."

    "Different?" Ah Fei said.

    "I've already decided a long time ago that if he were to die, I wouldn't live on alone without him. But you ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I don't intend on accompanying him in death." Ah Fei said.

    "Then that's why you should run." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I don't intend on running either." Ah Fei said.

    "But why?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "You should know why." Ah Fei said.

    "I understand that you'd want to avenge his death, but it doesn't have to be now. You could always wait ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "I don't intend on waiting." Ah Fei said.

    "But if you can't wait then ... then ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Then what?" Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong's lips had already started to bleed.

    "Then you can only die!" she exclaimed.

    Ah Fei stared at the stains of blood on his bamboo sword.

    The blood had already dried.

    "I know that you're going to want to try nonetheless, but it will really be useless." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "And what use can come out of you staying here to die with him?" Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong could not think of an answer.

    "You are staying here because there are some things that you know will be useless if done, yet for some reason you can't avoid doing them anyway." Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong finally let out a long sigh and said, "You're starting to sound more and more like him."

    Ah Fei was silent as he slowly nodded his head.

    He admitted it, there was no way that he could deny it.

    Anyone who encountered Li XunHuan couldn't help but be affected by his immense selflessness.

    If he hadn't met Li XunHuan, Ah Fei would have probably lost faith in humanity a long time ago.

    "Never trust anyone, and never accept kindness from anyone; else your life will be filled with suffering."

    Ah Fei's mother had to endure an entire life of sadness and misfortune. Not once had he ever seen her smile. She died when he was still very young, most probably because she had already lost all hope in life.

    "I've wronged you, I really should've waited until you've become a man to leave this world. But I just can't wait any longer. I'm just so extremely tired ... I'm sorry I can't leave anything for you, just these few simple words. I had to suffer an entire lifetime to learn them, so please never forget them."

    Ah Fei never forgot his mother's words.

    When he left the wilderness and made his way into civilization, it wasn't because he was seeking a better life. Rather, he wanted to reap vengeance on humanity for what his mother had to suffer.

    But the very first person that he encountered happened to be Li XunHuan.

    Li XunHuan made him realize that life wasn't just full of pain and suffering. Li XunHuan also made him realize that death wasn't as ugly and repulsive as he had thought. He happened to learn a lot from Li XunHuan.

    He originally never believed that morals and virtues could exist in this world.

    But Li XunHuan really had an immense influence on his life, even moreso than his mother had.

    Because what Li XunHuan preached was 'love', not hatred.

    Love will always be much easier to accept than hatred.

    But now, he just couldn't hold in those flames of hate!

    Hatred bred in him a desire to destroy, to destroy others, to destroy himself, and to destroy everything.

    He really felt that life was too unfair, that someone like Li XunHuan had to die like this.

    Sun XiaoHong let out a sorrowful sigh and said, "If ShangGuan JinHong knew that we were just standing outside waiting for him, he must be extremely happy."

    Ah Fei gritted his teeth and shouted, "Then let him be happy! Only the good in this world are left to suffer anyway, happiness is always rewarded to those that are evil!"

    Suddenly a voice shouted out loud.

    "You're wrong!"

    Although those iron doors were extremely heavy, they didn't make a single noise when they were being openend.

    That is why no one knew just when those doors had openend.

    A person slowly walked out from those doors ... it was Li XunHuan!

    He looked extremely tired and worn out, but he was alive.

    The only thing that mattered was that he was alive!

    Ah Fei and Sun XiaoHong just stared at him in disbelief, tears started streaming down their faces.

    They were tears of joy. In happiness and in sadness, with the exception of tears, there was really nothing that needed to be said, there was nothing that needed to be done. Not one of them even moved a muscle.

    Li XunHuan's eyes were brimming with warm tears as well. With a smile on his face he said, "You're wrong. The good people in this world will never suffer in quiet despair. And the pain suffered by evil will always outweight their happiness."

    Sun XiaoHong stumbled over to him, fell into his chest and started sobbing unceasingly.

    She just couldn't stop crying for joy.

    After a long while, Ah Fei let out a sigh and seemingly couldn't hold it in anymore.

    "Where is ShangGuan JinHong?"

    Li XunHuan softly caressed Sun XiaoHong's hair as he replied, "He must be suffering right now because he happened to make one mistake!"

    "What mistake did he make?" Ah Fei asked.

    "Indeed, he had many chances to kill me. He really could've forced me into a situation where I couldn't even defend myself. But he let the opportunity pass." Li XunHuan said.

    But for someone like ShangGuan JinHong, why would he willingly give up an opportunity like that?

    Sun XiaoHong couldn't help but ask either, "Why was that?"

    Li XunHuan smiled and said, "Because he wanted to take a gamble."

    A spark suddenly shot into Sun XiaoHong's eyes as she said, "He must've not believed in the saying that 'Little Li's flying dagger, once released never misses its target!'"

    "He didn't believe it - he didn't trust anyone, there was not a single thing in the entire world that he trusted." Li XunHuan said.

    "And the result?" Sun XiaoHong asked.

    "He was defeated!" Li XunHuan said.

    He was defeated!

    These were three simple words.

    Victory and defeat was something that was decided in an instant.

    But to imagine just how intense, just how grand that one instant must have been!

    That one instant would have immense consequences on the martial arts world.

    That single flash of light must have been frightening! Yet magnificent at the same time!

    Sun XiaoHong's only regret was to not have been able to witness what had happened in that single instant!

    She didn't even have to see it with her own eyes. Just thinking about it made her short of breath!

    Shooting stars were also just as splendid and beautiful.

    Shooting stars streaked through the dark night in a burst of light that could cause people to get excited in just the same way.

    But a shooting star couldn't even compare to the resplendence of that single flash of light.

    The radiance of a shooting start was short lived.

    But the brilliance of his blade would shine for all eternity!

    The door had already been opened.

    No one could keep the entire world separated any longer.

    If you wanted to cut yourself off from the rest of the world, you must have been rejected by the world in the first place!

    Ah Fei walked through those doors.

    The first thing that caught his eye was the dagger, that mysterious dagger.

    Little Li's Flying Dagger!

    The dagger was not protruding from ShangGuan JinHong's throat, but it was enough to take his life!

    The blade of dagger had entered his Adam's apple through the collarbone and was slanted upwards. The dagger must have been released from an extremely low angle.

    The look of fear and disbelief on his face was the same as the expression on the faces of those whom he had killed before.

    All life was created equal. Especially in the face of death, we are all equals. But some people only comprehend this when the final result has already been determined.

    ShangGuan JinHong's face was full of surpise, doubt, and disbelief.

    He was the same as everyone else, he just couldn't believe that the dagger was that fast!

    Even Ah Fei had a hard time believing that it was so, he really couldn't imagine just how that dagger was released.

    He wanted desperately for Li XunHuan to explain in details everything that had occurred but he knew that Li XunHuan wouldn't say a word.

    The brilliance of that single instant, the speed of his dagger, were simply things that couldn't be described.

    "He was defeated!"

    ShangGuan JinHong's fists were still clenched as if he was grasping on to something, was he still unwilling to believe what had happened?

    It's unfortunate that he will never be able to grasp onto anything again.

    Ah Fei suddenly felt extremely gloomy, as if he could really sympathize with this person. Even he had no idea why he felt this way.

    Perhaps it wasn't ShangGuan JinHong that he sympathized with, but himself.

    Because he was human. ShangGuan JinHong was also human. All humans had similar instances of sadness and suffering.

    Although he hadn't been defeated, just what exactly was he grasping onto? Just what exactly had he gained?

    After a long while Ah Fei finally turned his head.

    And what met his gaze was Jing WuMing.

    It appeared as if Jing WuMing hadn't even noticed anyone coming in. Although he was standing idly behind Ah Fei the entire time, it was as if he stood in a completely different world.

    Although his eyes were set on ShangGuan JinHong, he was really staring at himself.

    ShangGuan JinHong's life was his life, he was ShangGuan JinHong's image.

    When life had already disappeared, how could the image still remain?

    No matter what, whenever Jing WuMing stood nearby, everyone would always feel a dreadful killer's aura enveloping them from all sides.

    But now, that aura was nowhere to be found.

    When Ah Fei stepped into that room, he didn't even notice that another soul was inside.

    Although he was still alive, all that was left an empty shell. He was like a sword that had lost its edge, completely without purpose.

    Ah Fei couldn't help but sigh inwardly, he understood very well how Jing WuMing must have felt.

    Because he had experienced that very same feeling before.

    After some time, Jing WuMing walked over and lifted ShangGuan JinHong's corpse with his hands.

    He still hadn't laid an eye on anyone else as he slowly walked towards the door.

    "You don't want to seek revenge?" Ah Fei said.

    Jing WuMing didn't turn around, his steps didn't slow down either.

    Ah Fei laughed coldly, "Are you afraid?"

    Jing WuMing suddenly stopped in place.

    "There is still a sword at your waist, why are you afraid to take it out? Unless that sword of yours is only there for show?" Ah Fei said.

    Jing WuMing suddenly turned around.

    The corpse dropped to the floor, the sword flew out from his waist!

    The sword flashed, and shot straight towards Ah Fei's throat!

    He was still incredibly fast, just as fast as he was before. But for some reason when his sword was within about half a feet of its target, the bamboo sword in Ah Fei's had already reached his throat!

    Ah Fei had made three bamboo swords, this was the second one.

    He looked at Jing WuMing and slowly said, "You are still extremely fast, but you can no longer kill. Do you know why?"

    Jing WuMing lowered his sword.

    "Because you desire death more than your opponent. That is why you will never be able to kill." Ah Fei said.

    Jing WuMing's normally lifeless eyes suddenly lit up with incredible sorrow. After a long while, he finally responded, "Yes."

    "I can kill you." Ah Fei said.

    "Yes." Jing WuMing replied.

    "But I won't kill you." Ah Fei said.

    "You won't kill me?" Jing WuMing asked.

    "I won't kill you, preceisely because you are Jing WuMing!" Ah Fei said.

    Jing WuMing's face suddenly twitched.

    These were the exact same words that he had said to Ah Fei during their first encounter. But today, his words had suddenly turned into Ah Fei's words.

    He pondered maliciously about those words. A flame seemingly ignited in his eyes, like a pile of ashes that had suddenly caught fire again.

    Ah Fei looked at him and said, "You can leave now."

    "Leave ... ?" Jing WuMing said.

    "You once gave me a chance. Now I'm giving you a chance as well ... your very last chance." Ah Fei said.

    He watched as Jing WuMing made his way out, a strange feeling swelled up inside of him.

    "A tooth for a tooth, blood repaid with blood."

    What Jing WuMing had once given him, he now repaid in full.

    When a person's heart had already died, there are only two things that can keep that person alive.

    One of them is love, and the other is hatred.

    Ah Fei was able to keep living because of love. And now, he wanted to prolong Jing WuMing's life through hatred.

    But truly, he just wanted for Jing WuMing to live on.

    If this was really vengeance, it would be the most selfless kind of vengeance possible. If all vengeance was carried out like this, the history of mankind would have been much brighter. Mankind would undoubtedly be able to live on forever.

    No matter what, vegenace was always very satisfying.

    But was Ah Fei really that delighted right now?

    He just felt tired, so very tired ... the sword in his hands had already fallen to the ground.

    Sun XiaoHong had been watching quietly the entire time. Only now did she finally dare to utter a sigh of relief.

    "It is extremely easy to kill someone, but extremely difficult to convince them to live on."

    Those words were Li XunHuan's words.

    No matter who or what the situation was, the method that he always approached with was love, not hatred. Because he knew that hatred could only bring about destruction. Love had the power to give live throughout eternity.

    His love would forever be that broad, his personality would forever be that selfless.

    Sun XiaoHong suddenly realized that Ah Fei had become exactly like him.

    She couldn't help but glance over at him.

    Li XunHuan appeared to be worn out and tired as well, so much so that he couldn't even say a single word.

    She stared at him for a long while before finally smiling and said, "You two have just defeated the two best figters in the entire world. The most powerful union in all the land has just been dismantled in your hands. You two should be extremely overjoyed, but there isn't a single trace of happiness on your faces. It's as if the two of you are the ones who have just lost."

  11. #91
    Senior Member Mojo Jojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Northern NJ


    Chapter 89 - Epilogue

    Li XunHuan was quiet for a long while before letting out a sigh as he said slowly, "When a person is victorious, he will always feel extremely tired and lonesome."

    "Why is that?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Because he has succeeded, he has completed all his goals. There will be nothing left for him to look forward to. But the one who suffered defeat would actually be driven to work even harder than before." Li XunHuan said.

    Sun XiaoHong bit down on her lips and said, "Then the taste of victory isn't very sweet, is it?"

    Li XunHuan fell silent for a while before he let out a smile and said, "Although victory is somewhat difficult to endure, at the very least its much better than defeat."

    Success and victory can never really bring satisfaction, nor can it really bring happiness.

    True happiness can only be experienced during the struggles that you encounter throughout your life.

    If you've been fortunate enough to experience that kind of happiness, then your life hasn't been lived in vain.

    Pavilions were always the place where people met to say their farewells. Parting always brought about a melancholy mood.

    Therefore, just the mention of the word 'pavilion' carried a subtle sense of unhappiness.

    The rain had subsided, the grass and weeds were disheveled.

    Outside of the pavilion by the side of the road was a young couple saying their farewells.

    A heroic boy, a passionate girl. They were obviously in love. He really should stay and enjoy the happiness of youth. Why was he so intent on leaving?

    There was a sword by his side, but no sword no matter how sharp could sever the bond of youthful love and longing. His eyes were red as if tears had already been shed.

    "You've accompanied me thus far already, just go back now."

    The girl lowered her head and asked, "When will you return?"

    "I don't know, in a year or two, perhaps ..." the boy replied.

    The girl's tears started to stream down her cheeks as she said, "Why must you make me wait that long? Why must you go for?"

    The boy straightened up his posture and said, "I've already told you before, I want to find and defeat every single one of them!"

    His gaze focused into the distance and brightness emanated from his eyes as he continued, "The people listed in the 'Book of Weapons', ShangGuan JinHong, Li XunHuan, Guo Songyang, Lu FengXian ... I want everyone to know that I'm even stronger than all of them, and after that ..."

    "And after that, then what? We're already so happy right now. After you've defeated all of them, will we really be that much happier?" the girl pleaded.

    "Maybe we won't be, but nonetheless it is something that I must do!" the boy said.

    "Why?" the girl asked.

    "Because I can't just spend half my life meaninglessly like this. I want to make a name for myself. I want to become just as famous as ShangGuan JinHong and Li XunHuan. In fact, I know for sure that I can succeed!" the boy said.

    He clenched his fists tightly. He really was that resolute and determined.

    The girl looked at him admiringly, her eyes carried an inexhaustible tenderness and warmth. Finally, she sighed and softly said, "I know that you can succeed as well. No matter how long you'll be gone for, I'll always be here waiting for you."

    Their hearts filled with the sorrow of parting, but also with the anticipation of happiness that was to come.

    Of course the two of them wouldn't notice anyone else.

    Underneath the forest, there were two people staring intently at them.

    When the boy finally took the first big stride on the road that lay before him, Sun XiaoHong let out a sigh and said, "If only he knew of the fate that befell ShangGuan JinHong, I'm afraid he wouldn't be as quick to leave his sweetheart ..."

    What happens when a person finally does a make a name for themself?

    Sun XiaoHong looked towards Li XunHuan with tears in her eyes as she continued, "He wants to be just as famous as you, but you ... are you really that much happier than him? I think ... I think that if you were in his shoes, you wouldn't have done the same thing."

    Li XunHuan's eyes were still fixed on that boy's figure as it disappeared into the distance as he said, "If I were him, I would've done the exact same thing."

    "You ..." Sun XiaoHong said.

    "People must have goals and ambition, sometimes we have to abandon everything else and chase them with a purpose. Regardless of the outcome, whether it be success of happiness, it doesn't really matter." Li XunHuan said.

    A proud smile broke from the corners of his lips as his eyes filled with brightness and said, "Some people will think that this is foolish, but without that type of mindset, what would our world be like?"

    Sun XiaoHong's eyes suddenly filled with the same kind of tenderness and admiration that the young girl had shown. She, like the young girl by the pavilion, felt extremely proud of her man.

    Ah Fei who had been standing in the distance slowly started to walk towards them.

    But Sun XiaoHong still held on tightly to Li XunHuan's hand, she didn't let go. She was not ashamed, she felt that her affection was not something that she needed to hide.

    In fact, she would've gladly announced her affection to the entire world if she could.

    "I don't think that she will come." Ah Fei said.

    They were planning to meet Lin ShiYin here.

    They knew nothing of what had happened between Lin ShiYin and Long Xiao4Yun. Just like how that young boy knew nothing of the fate that befell ShangGuan JinHong.

    There are some things that are better left unknown.

    As soon as she thought of Lin ShiYin, Sun XiaoHong's grip unknowingly started to loosen.

    But she immediately held on tightly, even more tightly than before, as she replied, "She agreed to meet me here, I'm sure that she will come."

    "She won't come!" Ah Fei said.

    "Why?" Sun XiaoHong said.

    "Because she knows herself that there's no need for her to come." Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong was the one who had asked the question, but when Ah Fei answered, his eyes were looking at Li XunHuan.

    Li XunHuan didn't let go of Sun XiaoHong's hand either.

    In the past, whenever he heard someone mentioning Lin ShiYin's name, he would always feel an indescribable pressure and sadness, as if his entire body had been locked down by shackles.

    He had always carried that burden of sadness with him.

    But now, that sadness was no longer as strong as it had once been. What exactly had set him free?

    The feelings that he had for Lin ShiYin were built up over an extremely long time, so of course they would be very deep.

    And although he had known Sun XiaoHong for a much shorter amount of time, the two of them had endured the most difficult of hardships and loneliness. They had braved through life and death together.

    Was this kind of affection even stronger?

    By then Lin ShiYin was already lone gone.

    Ah Fei was right - she didn't come, because she didn't have to.

    Long Xiao3Yun had once asked her, "Why won't you allow me to go see him just one last time?"

    Lin ShiYin asked her son, "And why would you want to see him for?"

    Long Xiao3Yun gritted his teeth and replied, "At the very least, I want to make it clear to him just what my father died for."

    No matter what Long Xiao4Yun had done in the past, he had washed it all clean with his own blood now.

    As a son, one would obviously want the world to know that.

    But Lin ShiYin didn't feel the same way, as she said, "He did what he did only because he felt that it was the right thing to do. Not because he was begging for the forgiveness of others, and not because he wanted the entire world to know." she paused for a second and continued, "Not only did he repay his own debt, but he repaid our debt as well. As long as we live on happily, I'm sure that he will be able to rest in peace."

    She didn't want to go see Li XunHuan because she knew that it could only result in sadness.

    They didn't bother to look for Long Xiao4Yun's corpse either, because they knew that the Golden Currency Union disposed of corpses very quickly and efficiently.

    If they really did go to look, all that they would find would be sadness - this was something that Sun XiaoHong knew first-hand. Her grandfather's corpse would never be found again.

    There are some things in life that we simply cannot control, that no one is able to control.

    Although these things were difficult to endure, we have to find ways in which to live through them, and to live past them.

    They had decided to live on! Because death was not the solution to their problems - death wasn't the solution to anything.

    There was another group of people saying their farewells inside the pavilion.

    This time it was Ah Fei who was saying goodbye. He said that he wanted to travel the open seas to look for an herb that granted everlasting life and to look for the deity of longevity.

    Of course he wasn't telling the truth, but Li XunHuan didn't bother to stop him.

    Because Ah Fei's origins had always been a mystery. He never liked to talk about it even in front of Li XunHuan. But whenever Li XunHuan mentioned Shen Lan, Xiong Mao'Er, Wang LianHua, Zhu QiQi, and the heroes of the previous generation in stories and legends, his face would always light up with a very peculiar expression.

    Was there some sort of relationship between Ah Fei and the heroes of the past?

    Could they be the reason that he had decided to sail the open seas?

    Li XunHuan didn't bother to ask.

    Because he believed that a person's past was not important - humans weren't dogs, they weren't horses, pedigree was of no great importance.

    Who we wanted to become was entirely up to us.

    That was what was most important.

    When friends part, it was common for there to be a lot of well wishing but also a lot of sadness and emotions. But between Ah Fei and Li XunHuan, there was only well wishing, there was no sadness.

    Because they knew that the other would live on happily, and that there would be plenty of chances for them to see each other again in the future.

    Especially when Ah Fei saw Li XunHuan's hand, he felt even more at ease.

    Li XunHuan's hand was still holding on tightly to Sun XiaoHong's hand.

    That hand had wielded the dagger for way too long, that hand had held the wine glass for way too long as well. The dagger was too cold, the wine glass was too cold as well. It really deserved to enjoy the feeling of warmth by now.

    What else in this world could be warmer than your lover's hand?

    Ah Fei knew that Sun XiaoHong would appreciate that hand more than anyone else. Although that hand still bore the scars of battles fought, they would definitely heal over time.

    As for himself, of course he had his own scars.

    But he didn't wanted to mention it anymore.

    "The past is the past ..."

    This phrase seems really simple at first glance, but the number of people who were able to do such a thing were not many.

    But both Li XunHuan and Ah Fei were able to completely let go of the past.

    "In three years, I'll definitely return." Ah Fei suddenly said.

    He looked at their hands and smiled, "When I return, the two of you better take me out for some wine."

    "Well that's a given, but it's a pity that three years is such a long time." Li XunHuan said.

    "But the wine that I want to drink is very unique, I wonder if the two of you will be willing to treat me to some?" Ah Fei said.

    "What kind of wine do you want to drink?" Sun XiaoHong asked.

    "Of course that would be a wedding toast." Ah Fei replied.

    A wedding toast, of course that would be a wedding toast.

    Because it was the wine that was toasted at a wedding, it would need three years time - three years more than enough time to mourn for her grandfather.

    Sun XiaoHong's face started to blush.

    "I've tasted every type of wine except for this one, I only hope that the two of you will not disappoint me." Ah Fei said.

    Sun XiaoHong's face turned even redder. She lowered her head, but couldn't help but secretly glance over at Li XunHuan.

    The expression on Li XunHuan's face was very peculiar. The words 'wedding wine' seemingly caught him off guard. After a long pause, he said, "I've invited people to drink every kind of wine before, but never have I invited anyone for wedding wine. Do you know why?"

    Of course Ah Fei knew why, but Li XunHuan didn't want him to answer.

    So Li XunHuan answered for himself, "Wedding wine is simply too costly."

    "Too costly?" Ah Fei said.

    Li XunHuan smiled and said, "Because when a man offers to treat others to wedding wine, he is admitting that he is willing to slowly pay off a certain debt for the rest of his life. Unfortunately, I'm not one who likes to disappoint his friends."

    With a gentle cry, Sun XiaoHong threw herself into his chest.

    Ah Fei let out a laugh.

    He hadn't laughed like that in a very long time.

    With that one laugh, he suddenly felt much younger. He suddenly felt himself surge with courage and confidence. He suddenly felt a rekindled hope in all of humanity.

    Even a withered piece of lumber was full of life in his eyes. Because he knew that out of that dead log would come renewed life, after some time a young tree would definitely sprout.

    He never realized just how powerful a simple 'laugh' really was.

    Not only did he admire Li XunHuan, he was very grateful as well. Because it was not easy for someone to let out a laugh that they had held in for such a long time. But if you were able to bring laughter to others, then that was even more incredible.

    'Drawing feet on a snake', not only was that gesture a superfluous one, it was very silly as well.

    But there is already so much discontent in this world, why not help by trying to add a little laughter?

    Laughter, was like perfume, not only did it make oneself pleasant, it made others happy as well.

    What's wrong with acting a little foolishly if it could bring out laughter in others?

  12. #92
    Senior Member ChronoReverse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003


    I've taken the time to put the whole text into a single text file for everyone's convenience.

    Any newer version of WinRAR can open this. If you can't open it go here:

    7zip is free and opensourced. It can also open RAR and ZIP.

    Incidentally, I've just started to reread the whole thing and doing some minor edits for grammar and spelling. This will probably take a long time =/

    [update]Download away. I put it on my own webspace and there's 1TB per month. [/update]
    Last edited by ChronoReverse; 02-10-06 at 04:41 AM.

  13. #93
    Senior Member CC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003


    Many thanks to all the translators and chrono for taking the time to compile it.

  14. #94
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004


    I must have slacked off at work for a month straight finishing the last 20 chapters. Fun times, fun times

  15. #95
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Thumbs up Thankyou so much..

    This translation work is great.. love all the translators.. truly amazing work

Similar Threads

  1. Need Help Finding The Legend of Dagger Lee...
    By raymond_obsessed in forum Taiwanese TV Series
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 04-10-08, 09:06 AM
  2. some stuff in Dagger Lee
    By PJ in forum Wuxia Fiction
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 02-24-08, 09:45 PM
  3. Lee Chum Foon's second and third dagger?
    By Ken Cheng in forum Wuxia Fiction
    Replies: 40
    Last Post: 11-19-07, 03:12 PM
  4. Legend of Dagger Lee 2000
    By nitran in forum Mainland China TV Series
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-19-07, 09:18 PM
  5. Asking about Little Lee Dagger
    By Jian Shen in forum Wuxia Fiction
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 06-02-04, 01:39 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts