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Thread: Swordsman the Lost Duel

  1. #61
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by szfong View Post
    I REALLY like the new chapter....

    Why do I have a feeling that LHC may soon "stab" or "strike" RYY in the chest or across the face in a future chapter
    Won't spoil it for anyone. But I think you will enjoy how the love triangle plays out.

  2. #62
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by optimus610 View Post
    Interesting chapter. I see how you are changing how LHC thinks about RWX and YY. Given his mindset. When he finds out that his love is really DFBB he will be shocked, but will accept it as long as she explains everything to him. But even if she doesn't. He's too attached to her to betray their love. From a plot stand point you can do a lot after he finds out.
    You are right, this will be the privitol point in my story. I have a few surprises planned but I think everyone will like them.

  3. #63
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liljanger View Post
    Random person is what I have in mind. The main character would be DFBB and her other half. But i would not call it swordsman because it's going to be completely adapted though the characters would be the same.
    Just read your prologue. Well done. Have fun and welcome to the party

  4. #64
    Member optimus610's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mandred Skavenslayer View Post
    You are right, this will be the privitol point in my story. I have a few surprises planned but I think everyone will like them.
    I have an idea what you are planning.
    If anyone is interested in some of my other work. You can check them out here https://www.fanfiction.net/u/106973/

  5. #65
    Member Liljanger's Avatar
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    Thanks for the updates Mandred and here's wishing everyone Merry Christmas!

  6. #66
    Member Silverhawk's Avatar
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    Thanks Mandred. Been away for a bit but finally caught up with the chapters

  7. #67
    Senior Member szfong's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mandred Skavenslayer View Post
    Won't spoil it for anyone. But I think you will enjoy how the love triangle plays out.
    I see LHC receiving a "tricycle" as his Christmas present which he will be happy riding all year long.

  8. #68
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Surprises




    Linghu Chong sat in a tea-house at the foot of North Mount Heng and slowly sipped at his drink, wishing that it was wine. The weight of the borrowed armour felt uncomfortable but he could ignore it. He smiled as he remembered how he had acquired it.

    After leaving Yingying and her father he had ran into a military officer by the name of Wu Tiande. The man had been terrorising the peasants of a small town, taking food and money as he pleased. At first Linghu Chong only wanted to teach him a lesson but then an idea came to him. He knew that news of his relationship with Xiao Bai had probably spread across the Martial Arts world and that he had now become an outcast of the righteous schools.

    This meant that he was a target for any righteous schools or individual who wanted to make a name for themselves. Although he was not afraid of death he wanted to live long enough to see Xiao Bai again. So he had knocked Wu Tiande unconscious then taking the man's clothes, Linghu Chong had borrowed his identity.

    With his life now safe Linghu Chong had tried to think of where Xiao Bai might be. Knowing that she was Yilin's sister and Bai Xuesheng's friend, Linghu Chong hoped that one of them might know where she was. As he was closer to North Mount Heng he decided to try there first.

    As he was planning on how to infiltrate the nunnery he spotted a group of nuns coming towards the tea-house. He recognized Abbess Dingxian and her martial sister Dingyi at the head of the group. Hoping that his disguise would hold up Linghu Chong stayed in his seat as the nuns occupied the tables behind him.

    “When I find that young scoundrel I am going to...” Dingyi was cut of by a gesture from Dingxian:

    “Sister please calm down. Yilin's letter said that she had gone to find her sister. We can't be sure that this has anything to do with Lord Bai.”

    “But sister you know that rake's reputation.”

    “Be that as it may, we cannot go marching into White Tiger Palace and accuse someone of his standing of abducting Yilin without evidence.”

    Dingyi seemed about to argue but Dingxian continued talking before she had the chance:

    “Besides we you must remember that our primary reason for leaving the nunnery is to attend the meeting at Shaolin Monastery to decide what to do with that Devil Dongfang Bubai who is being imprisoned there.”

    “Who would have thought that the infamous Dongfang Bubai would be a woman. It truly beggars belief.”

    Linghu Chong froze when he heard the words. It wasn't hard for him to guess that Dongfang Bai and Dongfang Bubai were the same person. Now things were starting to make sense. It must have been she who had taken him to Shaolin Monastery and she must have offered her own liberty in exchange for Yijin Jing in order to save him. Although logically it all made sense, emotionally Linghu Chong was having trouble accepting it.

    How could the love of his life be the most hated monster in the Martial Arts world? He tried to convince himself that she couldn't be. That this was just one big coincidence. After all the family name Dongfang was not uncommon amongst the people of the north. Perhaps Xiao Bai was just related to Dongfang Bubai. That would explain their shared family name and Xiao Bai's prominence within the Sun-Moon Sect.

    But the next words of the nuns destroyed his fantasy:

    “What I find hard to believe is that she would sacrifice her freedom for Linghu Chong. Perhaps there is some goodness in her after all?” said Abbess Dingxian.

    “Sister how could you say that. It has long been rumoured that Bai Xuesheng has a strong relationship with that devil. More likely Linghu Chong is just her most recent lover and she is just pretending to submit to Shaolin in order to save his life.”

    Linghu Chong almost snapped on hearing Dingyi's words. He knew first hand of Xiao Bai's purity and that Bai Xuesheng was just her friend. He almost voiced his outrage but stopped when he realized that he had just accepted his lover's identity as Dongfang Bubai. But this posed another question. What was he going to do now? So caught up was he in his musing that he only noticed that the nuns had finished their meal and left when they had passed the horizon.

    Throwing down a handful of coins for his own drink he hurried after them, still unsure what, if anything he was going to do about his suddenly very complex love life.

    ####

    Bai Xuesheng was going through the reports from his spies. Having delivered his present to Yilin he had returned to White Tiger Palace. He had felt his heart bleeding when he found out that she was taking Holy Vows and even now he regretted not confessing his love to her at the time. He knew he had taken the cowards way out but he couldn't help it. He had been afraid that she might have rejected him.

    He had never been rejected in his life and had no idea if he could take such a blow. So he had decided to not risk his heart, but instead to bury it, hoping that one day it would die and he could go back to his playboy lifestyle. Opening a report from his spies at Mount Song he knitted his brow in anxiety. His face got more anxious as he read on.

    Dongfang Bai's secret was out and Zuo Lengshan was calling a meeting at Shaolin Monastery to decide what to do with her. Bai Xuesheng called for a servant and when he arrived Bai Xuesheng commanded that Tai Zhong be summoned at once. The captain arrived within a few minutes and bowed to his Lord:

    “You summoned me my Lord?”

    “How many men can you mobilise immediately?”

    “Including the Iron Tigers, five hundred.”

    “Have them march on Shaolin Monastery as soon as supplies are ready for the journey.”

    “At once my Lord. Will you be leading us?”

    “I will meet you at Shaolin” with these words Bai Xuesheng hurried out of the room and to the stables. There waiting for him were two of his fastest horses, saddled and loaded with supplies.

    ####

    Linghu Chong kept a discreet distance behind the nuns. He had been following them for several days hoping to pick up more information about Xiao Bai. He was still unsure what he was going to do about her, but knew that he must see her so that they can talk face to face. He was sure she would be able to explain everything to him.

    It was starting to get dark and the nuns were heading to a local nunnery to spend the night. Being unable to follow them Linghu Chong decided to spend the night in the nearby forest. He slept fitfully, his dreams plagued with nightmares. He saw two figures standing in a field littered with bodies. One was dressed as a woman and the other a man. Looking closer he saw that the woman was Dongfang Bai and the man was himself.

    Dongfang Bai was shouting at him hysterically and he was pointing a sword at her. The dream Linghu Chong that was watching this tragedy unfold tried screaming at them to stop. But he had no voice. He tried to run between them and stop them from doing something they would both regret. But he had no legs. He was like the wind and could only witness what was to take place.

    His awareness focussed on his doppelgänger holding the sword. He saw the face crease up in a mixture of confusion, fear and anger until finally he released his anger in a thrust straight to the heart of Dongfang Bai. The sword sank into her chest but her face showed no sign of pain. Looking into those deep soulful eyes he saw only disappointment. Then he saw her pain but it was no physical pain, it ran much deeper. The sword had not pierced her heart, but her soul and killed the wonderful woman that was hiding there.

    Linghu Chong woke with a scream and clutched at his chest feeling the blow that Dongfang Bai had suffered. Looking around he saw a sword besides him and threw it away as if it was diseased. Gradually he calmed down and remembered where he was. Still shivering with fear he went to pick up his sword but then noticed that there was a strange glow in the night sky. With a shock he realized that it was the glow of a great fire and that it was coming from the nunnery.

    ####

    Dingxian and Dingyi looked on in horror as their apprentices battled to save them. The two of them were trapped inside the burning nunnery while outside their surviving apprentices were engaged in a deadly struggle with dozens of masked men. There was a line of archers in front of the nunnery ready to shoot the Abbess and her martial sister should they try to leap through the flames. The situation seemed hopeless and the Abbess offered up a silent prayer that her apprentices be spared.

    Someone soared through the air high above the combatants and a wave of sword Qi flew from the mysterious figure. The Qi wave sliced into the archers keeping the nuns trapped and they were all sliced neatly in half. Taking advantage of this turn of events the nuns leapt out of the burning building and went to the aid of their apprentices. They needn't had bothered.

    The figure was already amongst the masked men and making short work of them. He moved with a speed and confidence that seemed impossible. No blade could touch him, but his own blade never missed. His footwork seemed random but not a single step was misplaced. His style was like not nothing they had ever seen before yet was also strangely familiar.

    Before long all the masked men were dead save two, whose skills with the sword marked them out as the leaders of the assassins. However even their skills were no match for the stranger who had disarmed them within a few strokes. Quickly the Mount Heng apprentices surrounded their unarmed assailants and removed their masks. A collective gasp could be heard as the faces of Deng Bagong and Gao Kexin were revealed.

    Dingxian stepped forwards and addressed the Mount Song elders:

    “Brothers Deng Bagong and Gao Kexin, I assume it was Lord Zuo who sent you to kill us?”

    “That is right” declared Deng Bagong defiantly.

    “Lord Zuo already leads the Alliance, why does he still desire to have the five schools become one with himself as the sole head?”

    “We just follow orders.” shouted Gao Kexin.

    “Release them” commanded Dingxian.

    “But sister!”

    “Those who commit evil always get their comeuppance.” responded Dingxian. The Abbess then addressed the Mount Song elders:

    “Please inform Zuo Lengshan that North Mount Heng are no longer part of the Five Mountain Alliance nor will we be taking any more orders from him. We maybe women but we will not submit to tyranny.”

    The Mount Song elders hurried of as if afraid that the Abbess would change her mind. Turning to her rescuer Dingxian studied him for a moment. He was dressed as a military officer with but the armour seemed to be slightly to large for him. He held himself with pride but his gaze showed signs of humility. The Abbess bowed:

    “Please accept this nun's gratitude for your assistance, may I know which Mount Hua expert has saved us.”

    “Abbess how did you know...?”

    “Your sword style showed elements of Mount Hua's art within it.”

    “Abbess' perception is truly remarkable.” Linghu Chong knew that revealing who he was might prove dangerous. After all he was still an outcast of Mount Hua and given his relationship with Dongfang Bubai there was a good chance that the Abbess might attack him.

    However the Abbess' bravery in the face of the Mount Song elders had impressed him and he could not believe someone like her would be so ungrateful as to attack her rescuer, so he decided the tell her the truth:

    “I am Linghu Chong.”

    Dingxian smiled at the young man and thought how strange life was. It never does turn out the way one would expect.

    ####

    Having travelled through the night Linghu Chong and the nuns arrived at the harbour early in the morning. He had changed into his normal clothes and felt much better. The Abbess and him had talked through the night with him explaining his relationship with Dongfang Bai along with his expulsion from Mount Hua. Dingxian had offered her condolences for his expulsion but also her congratulations on him finding someone like Dongfang Bai.

    Linghu Chong was surprised that the Abbess had approved of him falling in love with the Lord of the Sun-Moon Cult and told her so. The Abbess had laughed:

    “Young man, a person's background is unimportant. All that matters is how they conduct themselves. Take Zou Lengshan for instance. He is Lord of the Alliance yet his behaviour is as despicable as any member of the Sun-Moon Cult. Judge someone by their actions not where they come from.”

    Linghu Chong nodded at the truth of the Abbess' words and thought back to how Xiao Bai had treated him. Always see had treated him with sincerity and tenderness. Whenever he was in danger she would protect him. When he was injured she would tend to him. When sad she would comfort him. What more could he ask for in a companion? If she really was Dongfang Bubai then so be it, he cared not. To him she was Xiao Bai, the love of his life. No she was more than that, she was his life and if he could not live with her then he would not live at all.

    A barge was found to take the nuns and Linghu Chong on their way, but it would be late afternoon before the supplies would be ready so the Abbess suggested that Linghu Chong go into the nearby town to relax. Linghu Chong was only to happy to obey as he hadn't touched a drop of wine in the last few days and was starting to feel the effects.

    Returning to the harbour at the appointed time he saw the Mount Heng apprentices but no sign of Dingxian or Dingyi. He asked Yihe the most senior of the apprentices about this and was notified that elders had gone on ahead to intercede on his behalf with Abbot Fangzheng in the hope of gaining his friends release. Linghu Chong could not believe that the Mount Heng elders would do this for him. Truly he was blessed.

    ####

    They were making good time and should arrive at their destination in a few days. Yet despite this Linghu Chong found himself impatient and nervous. He wished he could grow a pair wings and fly to Shaolin. He knew he was being foolish but could not help it. His nightmare from his night in woods still haunted him and he was desperate to reach Xiao Bai.

    Sitting on the prow of the barge he noticed a small rowing boat coming towards him. On it was the boatman and a single passenger. As the boat got nearly he could make out more details about the passenger. He was a man in his seventies with a head of white hair and a long beard of the same colour. When in earshot the passenger shouted a greeting:

    “Friends on the barge, are you of the North Mount Heng School?” despite his age the man's voice was clear and strong travelling easily to Linghu Chong.

    “Yes members of the Mount Heng School are travelling on this barge. May I enquire into elder's name?” replies Linghu Chong.

    Without replying the man leapt of his boat and onto the barge. His steps were subtle yet steady and Linghu Chong could tell that the man was highly skilled in the Martial Arts. The Mount Heng apprentices come onto to deck to see the new comer. Linghu Chong greeted the man with a salute:

    “Linghu Chong pays his respect to elder.”

    “So you are Linghu Chong?” that man's voice was empty of aggression and contained nothing but curiosity.

    “And elder is?”

    “Just an old man who is a little to curious for his own good. I've heard you are quite skilled with the sword.”

    “I have a little talent in the art.”

    “Good, I also know a few random strokes, how about a little contest?” the man's eye sparkled with interest. His posture and manner still held no threat in them. He seemed genuinely eager to spar.

    “I would never dare elder.”

    “Come now, indulge a silly old man.”

    Linghu Chong knew that to continue to refuse would be rude so he reluctantly nodded his head. The man smiled like a school boy being given a present. He signalled to the boatman who threw a bamboo stick to him. The man took a defensive posture the smile still on his lips.

    Taking a defensive stance with his still sheathed sword Linghu Chong waited for the man to attack. When the strike came it almost caught him by surprise. Instead of attacking with his the stick the man stamped down with with right foot causing the barge to tip to one-side. Linghu Chong was hurled towards the point of the bamboo stick and had to twist in mid air to prevent himself from being impaled. As he twisted he swung his sword at the man's head.

    The man leaned backwards and the sword passed in front of his face harmlessly. As he moved he swung his stick at Linghu Chong mirroring his own blow. Crouching down Linghu Chong stabbed low but the man lifted his leg and Linghu Chong found nothing but air. Standing on one leg the man brought his stick down towards Linghu Chong's back. Linghu Chong rolled forwards hoping the barrel the man off his feet, but his opponent leapt into the air on his single leg and let him roll on by.

    The fight ranged around the entire barge, bamboo stick and sheathed sword moving as if connected by an invisible thread perfectly mirroring each other. Although the weapons never touched the skill of the their wielders could not be doubted as the lunged, slashed and moved flawlessly. Linghu Chong tried to find a pattern in his opponents style. To his surprise it seemed that the man was using his style. No matter where he struck the man would position himself to allow him to find nothing but air.

    Knowing that it would be impossible to defeat his opponent in the conventional way Linghu Chong decided to do something unconventional. He fainted a lunge but then hurled his sword into the air. His opponent was distracted for a split second and Linghu Chong saw his chance. Grabbing the man's sword wrist with his left hand he immobilised his opponent. Then catching his falling sword with his right hand he brought the point to rest between the man's eyes.

    The man boomed out in laughter:

    “Excellent. That was a brave move.”

    “Elder's skill was magnificent. Please accept my thanks for your leniency.”

    “Skilled without being arrogant. A rare gem indeed. I am glad that Master Feng Qingyang has such a worthy successor.”

    “Elder is acquainted with my Granduncle?”

    “Did he ever mention Chongxu.”

    Linghu Chong immediately let go of the man and bowed deeply:

    “I humbly greet reverend Chongxu and beg you to forgive my impudence.”

    “Don't be foolish boy, I haven't had this much fun in years.”

    Linghu Chong didn't know how to respond. He had never expected the High Priest of Wudang to act like this. Chongxu chuckled and continued:

    “I guess you are going to Shaolin to save your friend?”

    “Yes Reverend.”

    “Good. A man should always be loyal to his friends. So I guess I'll see you there.” and with those words the reverend leapt of the barge and back onto his boat leaving very surprised Linghu Chong staring at him.

  9. #69
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liljanger View Post
    Thanks for the updates Mandred and here's wishing everyone Merry Christmas!
    Hope you had a Merry Christmas. Just read chapter 2 of your story. Guess you are enjoying Romance of the Condor Heroes

  10. #70
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silverhawk View Post
    Thanks Mandred. Been away for a bit but finally caught up with the chapters

    Hope you enjoyed them and Merry Christmas.

  11. #71
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by szfong View Post
    I see LHC receiving a "tricycle" as his Christmas present which he will be happy riding all year long.
    Every man's dream

  12. #72
    Member Silverhawk's Avatar
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    Thanks for for the quick updates Mandred.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandred Skavenslayer View Post
    Just read chapter 2 of your story. Guess you are enjoying Romance of the Condor Heroes
    So DFH will be the villain and DFBB who has yet to surface will be the protagonist this time? How interesting

  13. #73
    Senior Member Dongfang Xue's Avatar
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    Dropping by to show my support. Keep up the good work

  14. #74
    Member Liljanger's Avatar
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    Thanks Mandred

  15. #75
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    A New Dawn



    The rain lashed at her face like a whip, but still she pushed on. Every second counted and any delay could prove fatal. Yilin had reached the foot of Mount Shao Shi when she had been caught in the storm and common sense told her to seek shelter. But concern for her sister drove her on. She was not sure what she was going to do when she got to Shaolin Monastery. She could not win back her sister's freedom by force and if Bai Xuesheng was telling the truth then it was unlikely that the Abbot as going to release her when he discovered her identity.

    Yilin's haste made her careless and he foot slipped as she was trying to negotiate her way up a steep slope. Tumbling down the slope she banged her head on some rocks and stars blazed in front of her eyes as she tried to stay conscious. Laying face down in the mud she pushed herself to her hands and knees desperate to continue on her mission, but exhaustion overwhelmed her and she sank into darkness.

    ####

    Dongfang Bai flicked through the pages of the scriptures Fangzheng had sent her. Boredom had drove her to read the holy texts and she had dismissed most of their teachings as impractical theorizing. However one story stuck in her mind, that of Buddha and the eagle. She understood why someone might sacrifice themselves for a loved one, but could there really be a person like Buddha who would do it for every living creature in existence?

    She did not know but the idea of such a vast love intrigued her and made her think that maybe this would was not as cruel as she had always thought it was. There was a knock on her door and she opened it to see Abbot Fangzheng who was accompanied by two nuns:

    “Young lady, may we come in?” asked the Abbott.

    Although a prisoner of Shaolin, Dongfang Bai had been given her own set of rooms and been extended every privilege befitting an honoured guest, including her right to privacy. Inviting her guest in she studied them as they entered. The nuns were in their mid to late fifties and wore the uniform of North Mount Heng elders. The younger of the nuns smiled stiffly to Dongfang Bai but the older one looked at her with soft eyes similar to the compassionate gaze of Fangzheng:

    “Young lady, may I introduce Abbess Dingxian and her martial arts sister Dingyi.”

    After the greeting the nuns Dongfang Bai turned back to the Abbot:

    “Holy one, to what do I owe this visit.”

    “Young lady I have come to inform you that you are free to go.”

    “But what about our agreement?”

    “Young lady, I have to admit that I only fulfilled half of our agreement, for although I saved Linghu Chong's life I could not pass Yijin Jing to him.”

    “You lied to me” Dongfang Bai's voice sounded like the growl of a lion about to pounce on its prey and everyone in the room knew that they were in imminent danger of death. Swiftly Dingxian stepped forward:

    “There's no need for violence lady Dongfang, I have met Linghu Chong recently and can assure you that he is in good health. In fact both me and my sister have been saved by him so have come here to ask the Abbot for your release.”

    Although she was thrilled to know that Linghu Chong was safe, Dongfang Bai did not miss that fact that the Abbess had addressed her by her real name. She had never revealed her name to Fangzheng and so knew that her identity must have become known in the wider world. Nodding her thanks to the Abbess she again turned to Fangzheng:

    “Can I assume that you know who I really am?”

    “This humble monk begs Lord Dongfang's forgiveness for not recognizing your august personage earlier.”

    “And you are still willing to let me leave?”

    “The Abbess has told me of your relationship with Linghu Chong. No one who shows such compassion can be beyond redemption. I am willing to trust in the judgement of the Abbess.”

    Dongfang Bai was taken aback by the Abbot's words. Could there really be people as wise and merciful as these people seemed to be? Her natural distrust of people made her weary, but her heart burned with the need to see Linghu Chong again. Thanking the Abbot, Dongfang Bai took her leave.

    ####

    Although she had reached to foot of Mount Shao Shi without incident Dongfang Bai did not let her guard down and scanned her surrounding with cautious eyes, expecting an ambush to be sprung at any moment. She noticed a still figure laying in the undergrowth nearby. Normally she would have ignored it as none of her business, but some instinct told her to take a closer look.

    With her nerves tensed she approached the figure and readied her body to defend herself. As she loomed over the unmoving body she let out a cry of shock as she saw the features of her sister. Crouching down she took Yilin in her arms:

    “Yilin!, Yilin! Please wake up.” Dongfang Bai continued pleading hysterically for her sister to wake up for a few minutes until her common sense asserted itself. She checked Yilin's breath and pulse then let out a sigh of relief as she found them both slow but steady. She then examined her sister in more details and saw the blood trickling down the side if her head.

    Satisfied that her sister was in no immediate danger Dongfang Bai put her over her shoulder and took her to look for help.

    ####

    “This humble monk welcomes his honoured guests” greeted Abbot Fangzheng as he entered he the Main Hall where his guests waited. Everyone rose from their seats as he entered and returned his greeting.

    The Abbot took this chance to study his guests. They sat in two lines to either side of his own chair. At the seats closest to him were Chongxu to his left and Zuo Lengshan to the right. Fangzheng turned to the left and gave his old friend a warm smile. Chongxu's presence gave the Abbot some much needed support. Both of them had shared many adventures together in their youth and now they worked tirelessly to ensure the peace of the Martial Arts world.

    Turning to his right Fangzheng kept smiling but couldn't keep the warmth he had shown to Chongxu. The Abbot had long suspected that Zuo Lengshan's ambitions went beyond the Five Mountain Sword Schools Alliance and the latter's recent behaviour had confirmed his suspicions. Now looking into his smug self-righteous face the Abbot felt a little nauseated.

    Travelling down the seats he noted Yue Buqun and his Ning Zhongze. They were sitting opposite Zuo Lengshan and the Abbot noticed that they were glaring at the Lord of Mount Song with barely contained hostility. Also present were Tianmen, Yu Canghai and Mo Da. There were two vacant seats in the Hall as Dingxian and Dingyi had not arrived yet.

    As everything retook their seat Fangzheng continued:

    “I would like to thank everything for coming to my humble monastery and to apologise for any oversight that might occur in seeing to your comforts.”

    As the Abbot was speaking Dingxian and Dingyi arrived. On seeing Zuo Lengshan Dingyi flew into a rage:

    “Zuo Lengshan you two faced scum, today I am going to rid the world of your vile presence.”

    The nun was prevented from carrying out her threat by Dingxian's hand on her shoulder:

    “Sister please control yourself. Remember we are all guests at Shaolin Monastery and cannot place the Abbot in a difficult position.”

    “But sister...”

    “We will settle our dispute with Zuo Lengshan at a later date. Right now we are to restrain ourselves in Shaolin.” the Abbess' words left no room for argument and Dingyi settled for a murderous glare at Zuo Lengshan.

    With peace once more restored Fangzheng continued:

    “My honoured guests, I assume everyone is here to discuss the matter of Dongfang Bubai.”

    “Honourable Abbot, we have all heard that you have captured this devil and have come to assist you in the ridding the world of this evil.” said Zuo Lengshan.

    Dingyi nearly exploded in anger at those hypocritical words but a look from her martial arts sister forced her to keep her temper. Surprisingly it was the Abbot who spoke up for Dongfang Bubai:

    “I am afraid you are mistaken Lord Zuo. Lady Dongfang was my guest and was staying here while I tended to Linghu Chong.”

    At these words Yue Buqun stood up:

    “I must apologise to the honourable Abbot for raising such a vile creature as Linghu Chong. I only hope that I can personally kill him to redeem my honour.”

    “If a may interject...” everyone turned to Chongxu as he spoke: “I have met Linghu Chong on my way here and must say that I found him an outstanding young man. He was skilled yet humble. Perhaps there has been some misunderstanding between the young sir and Master Yue?”

    “There is no misunderstanding! He took that devil Dongfang Bubai as his woman so damning himself and bringing shame to my school.” Yue Buqun spoke the words with the passion of a fanatic and Chongxu knew their was no point to arguing with him.

    However Dingxian could not allow someone to insult her rescuer:

    “Master Yue, with all due respect I must disagree. Linghu Chong once saved me and my school from destruction, thus showing his noble character. From his description of lady Dongfang, she seems to be a person not devoid of compassion. Perhaps they are not beyond redemption.”

    “Abbess are you suggesting that your school is also colluding with the Evil Cult?” said Yu Canghai.

    “How dare you! My sister was just speaking the truth and judging people by their actions. I have never witness lady Dongfang or Linghu Chong commit any vile acts, which is more than can be said for many of those present here.” Dingyi directed her words to both Yu Canghai and Zuo Lengshan. The former glared back at her, angered by the reminder of his treatment of the Lin family while the latter just ignored her.


    Fangzheng stood up before the discussion could get violent:

    “Everyone please calm down. The truth be told it really doesn't matter how we view lady Dongfang and Linghu Chong, for the lady has already left my monastery.”

    Silence greeted the Abbot's words as everyone took in the shocking news. Mo Da, Tianmen and Ning Zhongze looked at the Abbot in shock. Zuo Lengshan, Yu Canghai and Yue Buqun seemed on the verge of erupting in rage while the two nuns just smiled knowingly. Seeing that nobody else was going to speak the Abbot continued:

    “I would like to offer my thanks to everyone for coming today and to ask that you all stay a few days to enjoy the hospitality of my humble monastery.”

    Polite murmurs greeted the Abbot's words and slowly people started leaving for their chambers, some angry at being denied their prey while others releaved at the peaceful resolution to the situation.

    ####

    Mo Da was in his room sharpening his sword when there was a knock on his door. Concealing the blade back inside his huqin he opened the door to find Zuo Lengshan standing there:

    “Brother Mo, would you come with me. I have something I would like to discuss with you.”

    Although Mo Da was suspicious of the man, he doubted that Zuo Lengshan would try to harm him in Shaolin Monastery so went with him. They arrived at a small garden where there was a stone table along with some stone seats. Zuo Lengshan asked Mo Da to take a seat and then sat down opposite him:

    “Brother Mo I have invited you here to discuss an important event.”

    “Lord Zuo flatters me. How can I be of service?”

    “I would like to discuss the unification of the Five Mountain Sword Schools.”

    Mo Da stood up and his hand drifted to the hilt of his hidden sword. Zuo Lengshan smiled at Mo Da's reaction:

    “But before we continue I would like to introduce you to a new apprentice of mine.”

    Deng Bagong and a young boy emerged from behind a wall. The boy was wearing a Mount Song uniform but their was no mistaking the features Liu Qin who looked up with terrified eyes at Deng Bagong. Mo Da shook with impotent rage but slowly removed his hand from the hilt of his sword.

    ####

    Yue Buqun stood in the doorway and looked over his shoulder with a triumphant smile. Staring down at the corpses of Dingxian and Dingyi he congratulated himself on removing another obstacle in his path to greatness. He still couldn't believe how easy it was to dispose of the nuns. If he could achieve this by using just one move from the Evil Resisting Sword what else could he do when he finally master the entire art.

    Of course there was the small problem of the first step required to study the art properly but Yue Buqun was sure that he could find a way around this. So drunk was he on his own confidence that he failed to notice that the chest of Abbess Dingxian still rose and fell very slightly.

    ####

    Dongfang Bai ran the comb through Yilin's hair and smiled as fond memories from her youth came back to her. It had been ten days since she had discovered her unconscious sister and brought her to the small village they were staying in. The local physician had diagnosed that Yilin had concussion and a fever, but that her condition was not life threatening.

    For two days and nights Dongfang Bai tended to her sister, eating little and not sleeping at all until on the third day Yilin's fever had finally broken. Fearing for her sister's health Dongfang Bai had remained with her in the village until she was sure that Yilin was well. Turning around Yilin saw her sister's smile and responded with one of her own:

    “What are you smiling at Jiě Jiě?”

    “Just remembering how I used to comb your hair every morning when we were younger.”

    “I remember running to your room every morning and thinking how lucky I was to have such a beautiful Jiě Jiě.”

    Giving her sister a hug Dongfang Bai whispered into her ears:

    “Now that you are safe I must go back to Shaolin Monastery.”

    “Are you worried about Linghu Dage?”

    Dongfang Bai nodded:

    “He doesn't know that I am free. If he confronts the Abbot I am afraid he might get hurt.”

    “I'll go with you.”

    “You can't.”

    “Jiě Jiě, either you take me with you or I am going by myself.”

    Dongfang Bai saw a reflection of her own stubbornness in Yilin's eyes and knew there was no point arguing:

    “I guess there are some-things even the Lord of the Sun-Moon Cult cannot conquer” she said the words with a mock sigh that caused Yilin to giggle.

    ####

    Linghu Chong sneaked into Shaolin Monastery by leaping over the high walls. It was the middle of the day and he knew he should have waited until nightfall to try this, but worry over the safety of Xiao Bai had made his throw caution to the wind. Finding a quiet courtyard he leapt onto the ground and went to the nearest door. As quietly as possible he made a small hole in the paper covering the door and peered inside.

    Seeing the bodies of Dingxian and Dingyi he burst into the room and ran to them. Dingyi was dead but Dingxian was still breathing. Gently he shook the Abbess and she slowly opened her eyes:

    “Abbess. What happened?”

    “Linghu Chong...I have..something to...beg you.”

    “I am at your service Abbess.”

    Weakly she lifted her hand and removed a jade ring from her left thumb, placing the ring in Linghu Chong's palm she whispered:

    “Linghu Chong, I appoint...you the new...Head of North Mount Heng.”

    “But Abbess how can a man be the Head of North Mount?”

    “If you...don't promise me...I will die without...peace.”

    With no choice Linghu Chong accepted the ring:

    “Also...be careful of...” with the last of her strength spent the Abbess died, unable to give her last warning.

    Linghu Chong tried desperately to wake the Abbess but to no avail. His grief over the death of the kindly Abbess turned to fear as he thought that a similar fate might have befallen Xiao Bai. Driven temporally insane by his fear Linghu Chong stormed out of the room and started shouting her name as he searched the monastery.

    Somehow he found his way to the Main Hall. His hysterical shouts had attracted a lot of attention and he found himself surrounded by a dozen staff-wielding monks. In a single swift movement Linghu Chong drew his sword and unleashed a wave of sword Qi. The monks nearest to him found their staffs a foot shorter and stepped back in terror:

    “Where is Dongfang Bai!? Release her now or I swear I will tear this place apart brick by brick.” roared Linghu Chong in a voice that made it clear he fully intended to carry out his threat.

    Two figures flew across the ceiling and landed between Linghu Chong and the monks. The mist of anger that had clouded his mind vanished as he saw Dongfang Bai. Dropping his sword he ran forwards and scooped her up in a crushing embrace:

    “Chong Ge, is it really you? I am not dreaming am I?” asked Dongfang Bai.

    “If this is a dream I don't ever want to wake up.” replied Linghu Chong as he lost himself in those wonderful eyes.

    “That can be arranged!” shouted Zuo Lengshan as he pushed his way through the monks with the assembled masters flanking him.

    Letting go of Dongfang Bai, Linghu Chong picked up his sword and prepared to defend himself. Dongfang Bai spread her arms out in front of her lover and her sister determined that no one would harm them. Yue Buqun spotted Yilin and stepped forwards:

    “Yilin, what are you doing here?”

    “Dongfang Bai is my sister uncle Yue” she replied sheepishly.

    Yu Canghai let out a mocking laugh:

    “It seems that the connection between the Evil sect and the Five Mountain Sword Schools Alliance runs very deep indeed.”

    Abbot Fangzheng stepped forwards and tried to diffuse the situation:

    “Please everyone, there is no need for violence. Lady Dongfang I welcome you and the young sir back to my monastery.”

    “Holy one is to kind. I am sorry for disturbing your tranquillity. We will leave at once.” replied Dongfang Bai.

    “Do you think you can really come and go as you please!?” shouted Zuo Lengshan.

    “I was addressing the Honourable Abbot, whoever you are.” Dongfang Bai used a tone of voice that an owner would use on a disobedient dog and it was not lost on Zuo Lengshan.

    “I am Zuo Lengshan”

    “And what makes you think you can stop me leaving?” Dongfang Bai had kept her tone from before, indicating that she was not impressed by the name.

    To her surprise Zuo Lengshan smiled:

    “Lord Dongfang's martial art is world renowned and it is true that we may not be able to stop you from leaving. However the same may not be true for your sister.”

    The doors to the front of the Hall flew through the air and landed upright in a semi circle around Dongfang Bai, Yilin and Linghu Chong. As the doors fell down a new arrival could be seen standing in front of Yilin.

    “Bai Xuesheng!” gasped Zuo Lengshan.

    “Anyone who threatens Yilin answers to me” Bai Xuesheng's words were laced with Qi and vibrated in the ears of everyone in the hall.

    “Well it seems that the Dongfang sisters charms are truly irresistible. Even the Lord of White Tiger Palace is a slave to their sensual ways.” mocked Yu Canghai.

    The words had barely left his mouth when Bai Xuesheng was upon him. With a sharp slap to the face he sent Yu Canghai sprawling to the ground. As the Head of Qingcheng school tried to get up Bai Xuesheng stepped on the side of his head and slowly started applying pressure:

    “I give you to the count of three. Either you apologise to the ladies or I crush you skull. One.”

    “I am sorry, I am sorry. Please don't do it.” babbled the man.

    Bai Xuesheng stepped of the man then walked back to his companions and gave Abbot Fangzheng a bow:

    “My apologies for that unpleasant scene Holy One.”

    “Bai Xuesheng, even if you get pass us we have several hundred people at the foot of Mount Shao Shi. You will never leave here alive.” barked Zuo Lengshan.

    “Why must you always underestimate me Lord Zuo?”

    As if on cue a Mount Song apprentice ran into the Hall and addressed Zuo Lengshan:

    “My Lord a large body of men have arrived and they don't seem friendly.”

    “How many?” asked Zuo Lengshan's

    “About five hundred, including my Iron Tigers. I might not leave Mount Shao Shi but I can promise you that you won't.” answered Bai Xuesheng.

    “Everyone please calm down. I do not want to see this sacred ground washed in blood.” said Abbot Fangzheng.

    “May I make a suggestion?” all eyes turned to Chongxu as he spoke:

    “In order to avoid a massacre a propose a contest. Three of us will challenge three of you to three duels. If the three of you win the most duels then you can all go free. If we win the most duels then the ladies will stay at Shaolin for twenty years.”

    Dongfang Bai turned to her companions and received nods of acceptance from them:

    “Very well, which three experts will you choose.”

    “Abbot Fangzheng is our host so must participate. Reverend Chongxu proposed this contest so he cannot stay out of it. I to would like to see what the younger generation are capable of.” Zuo Lengshan's words were well chosen. By offering to fight along side the two most respected persons in the righteous Martial Arts World he was enhancing his own status and implying that the three of them acted in the same accord.

    Dongfang Bai turned to the Abbot:

    “Honourable Abbot, I have long heard of your famous Yijin Jing. It is an honour to finally be able to witness it.”

    Stepping into the centre of the hall the combatants faced each other. Dongfang Bai struck first with her customary blinding speed. Luckily for the Abbot his lifetime of training had allowed him to master the art of nothingness. This was a state of being were the body became incredibly sensitive to its environment around it allowing the person to react without conscious thought and cutting down reaction time to a fraction of what it normally would be.

    Even so the Abbot found himself nearly overwhelmed by the barrage of blows being rained down on him and had to activate his Thousand Hand Buddha Palm. Qi enhanced after images of his palm shot towards Dongfang Bai each one as powerful as an actual palm strike from the Abbot. The palms flew in close formation and at great speed leaving only the smallest of gaps between them.

    Fangzheng looked on in shock as Dongfang Bai kept coming towards him, stepping in between the palm strikes with the ease of someone going for a stroll. In desperation the Abbot summoned all of his Qi energy and surrounded himself in a transparent Qi dome that shone like a golden shield. This was the Golden Bell Shield which made ones aura as strong as diamonds.

    Incredibly Dongfang Bai didn't even slow down but lunged forwards with her right hand, fingers thrusting out. As the Abbot looked on he saw her index finger glowing in a red light as it pierced his supposedly impregnable shield and pressed against his jugular. Dongfang Bai took a step back:

    “I thank the honourable Abbot for his leniency.” she said with an apologetic bow.

    “Lady Dongfang's skills can truly be said to frighten both gods and demons, this humble monk accept his defeat.”

    Dongfang Bai stepped back amongst her companion and winked at Linghu Chong. Her lover smiled back and stepped forwards:

    “Which expert would like to give me some pointers?”

    Zuo Lengshan leapt into the air and the sheath of his sword shot towards Linghu Chong's face. Linghu Chong dived under the sheath and lunged upwards trying to slice of Zuo Lengshan's feet. The Head of Mount Song flipped in mid air and Linghu Chong's blade scratched the soles of his shoes. Landing lightly Zuo Lengshan went on the offensive. Every blow from the man was aimed at killing his opponent and powered by immense Qi strength. Even with Dugu Nine Sword, Linghu Chong was hard pressed to stay alive.

    Forcing himself to remain calm Linghu Chong quickly went through what he knew of Mount Song's Sword Art. Time seemed to slow for him as he saw Zuo Lengshan strike and he recognized the move from the carvings on Repentance Cliff. Moving accordingly Linghu Chong positioned his sword to strike at the blind spot he knew would be there. Zuo Lengshan's well homed reflexes saved him as he leapt back from the decapitating swing, but in so doing he had lost his momentum. Linghu Chong went immediately on the offensive and Zuo Lengshan could do nothing but retreat.

    Finally as Linghu Chong corned Zuo Lengshan against a wall something very strange happened. Zuo Lengshan had just blocked a slash to the heart from him but as Linghu Chong tried to pull his sword away he found it stuck to Zuo Lengshan's blade. Looking closer Linghu Chong saw that the swords were encased in a thin layer of ice.

    Zuo Lengshan stabbed his sword into the ground trapping both blades then sent a palm strike at Linghu Chong with his free hand. Linghu Chong met the attack with his own palm and instinctively activated the Art of Star Absorption. That was to prove a mistake for as soon as he absorbed Zuo Lengshan's Qi his all body became ice cold and he was barely able to break free and stagger backwards.

    As he fell backwards he felt Dongfang Bai's arms catching him. Turning to his love he gave her a weak smile:

    “Stupid boy, did you think your Art of Star Absorption would work on me. I have spent the last decade developing my Freezing Inner Energy. Now you know how it taste.” Zuo Lengshan laughed wickedly as he spoke and Dongfang Bai had to fight the urge to rip his throat out.

    Finally Bai Xuesheng stepped forward and saluted Chongxu:

    “Reverend, I cannot tell you what an honour it is to receive some guidance from your illustrious self.”

    “Bai family's Martial Arts is world renowned, it is this old man that is honoured.”

    Bai Xuesheng shot his palm out to where the frozen swords were and sent a bolt of Qi energy at them. The ice shattered and Linghu Chong's sword flew into the air to be caught effortlessly by Bai Xuesheng.

    Chongxu drew his sword and started circling Bai Xuesheng. The priest's footsteps were so light that they wouldn't have disturbed a spider's web as he rapidly closed the gap between him and his opponent. Chongxu's sword was just as light as his steps seemly to float on the breeze as it mirrored the circular movements of his footwork. Throughout this whole time Bai Xuesheng remained statue still and Yilin feared that he might have been frozen in terror at the dazzling skill of Chongxu.

    As Chongxu lunged forwards Bai Xuesheng struck. The blades met in a shower of sparks and both of them shattered as the energy of the wielders collided. Chongxu was caught completely by surprise by the blow and staggered backwards from the release of energy. As the priest regained his foot he found the broken yet still sharp remain of Linghu Chong's sword at his throat.

    Bai Xuesheng stepped backwards and saluted:

    “I thank Reverend Chongxu for your guidance.”

    With a smile Chongxu replied:

    “Amazing truly amazing.” He realized that Bai Xuesheng had figured out that if he tried to match swordsmanship with him then the younger man would have been at a disadvantage. So instead he had channelled all his powers into one devastating blow which shattered both their swords but gave him victory.

    Bai Xuesheng discarded the broken weapon then helping Dongfang Bai support Linghu Chong the four companions left Shaolin.


    I am going back to work tomorrow so will be uploading a lot slower.

  16. #76
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silverhawk View Post
    Thanks for for the quick updates Mandred.



    So DFH will be the villain and DFBB who has yet to surface will be the protagonist this time? How interesting
    No problem

  17. #77
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dongfang Xue View Post
    Dropping by to show my support. Keep up the good work
    Thanks for the support

  18. #78
    Senior Member Mandred Skavenslayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liljanger View Post
    Thanks Mandred

    Hope you enjoy the newest chapter

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    Nice chapter. One thing though. Shouldn't have Zuo Lengshan and the rest been a little more surprised that lhc new the star-sucking skill? It came off, at least to me, that Zuo Lengshan already knew lhc knew the skill.
    If anyone is interested in some of my other work. You can check them out here https://www.fanfiction.net/u/106973/

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    Keep up the good work, Mandred.

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