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Thread: Flying Dagger, The Flying Dagger Reappears 《飛刀,又見飛刀》 - Gu Long

  1. #21
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    Part Three: A Battle That Bewitches the Soul


      "I can go with you if you want. But promise me one thing at least."
      "What?"
      "I want wine. And I want to enjoy it to the full."
      "Alright, I'll buy you wine." Tie Yinyi said, "I promise you will have a great time drinking wine."


    ..


    Highland. A wide plateau.
      An autumn breeze was blowing, yet not a falling leaf could be seen. There was not even a single tree on this wild plain.
      Overnight, it had undergone great changes. There were suddenly more than twenty tents topped with golden tassels, erected around one massive tent with a canopy sewn from 1,128 pieces of calfskin.
      It took place in the morning.
      The cowherds who were there the day before, arrived in the morning. They thought they had come to the wrong place.
      Things became even more surprising by noon. No one could believe their eyes.
      All of a sudden, there was a red carpet over the grassland. Wagons brought in many exquisite wooden tables, chairs and beds, which were carried into different tents.
      Wine vessels cast from solid gold and silver were set on the table in the main tent.
      Another seven or eight large carriages appeared. Several middle-aged men alighted. They had potbellies protruding slightly and were all big shots, or so it seemed. There was a greasiness on their faces that could never be washed off.
      Almost no one recognized them. Someone was heard yelling from a distance,
      "Announcing the arrivals of Master Chen from Heavenly Scent Hall, Master Du from Spring Heart Garden, Master Hu from Jade Spring Pavilion, Master Li from Top Graduate House, Master Lin from Great Constellation Hall!"
      Another group appeared around dusk, on pliant horses wafting with plum fragrance. Gorgeous beauties stepped down from the carriages. They were attended to by maidservants both young and old, pretty page girls and handsome page boyseach with a unique grace and charisma.
      They were assigned to different tents.
      Tie Yinyi and Li Huai were of course the last to arrive.
      It was past twilight by the time they arrived. The tent was already resplendently lit like it was day.
      Li Huai squinted with his smiling eyes.
      "What they saythat Chief Steward Tie is the most generous man in the worldis surely no exaggeration."
      "I promise to let you enjoy your wine to the full. I'm going to pay for it in a grand manner."
      "Looks like I have no reason not to get drunk tonight."
      "Then get drunk," Tie Yinyi said. "The two of us aren't friends, but I can be drunk with you tonight."
      "We aren't friends? Why not?" Li Huai asked.
      Tie Yinyi stared at him. He had that same heavy and solemn expression in his eyes again.
      "Remember, you're the Second Young Master of the Li family. No one in the world can be your friend, given your status and position."
      Tie Yinyi stared at him. He had that same heavy and solemn expression in his eyes again.
      He continued, stressing each word, "Remember: after drinking with me tonight, you'd probably not have another chance to drink like this again."
      "Why not?"
      "Because you're now heir to those peerless flying daggers." Tie Yinyi's face became even more solemn. "And you must pay a painful price to be their heir."
      "So why must I inherit them?"
      "You're born to. You have no choice."
      "Can't I live a happier life?"
      "No."
      Li Huai laughed again. "I'm not convinced. I'd have to find a way to."
      No matter how depressed, disillusioned or despondent a man gets when he becomes sober, he's always happy when he drinksespecially when beautiful women attends to him.
      So Li Huai drank.
      Tie Yinyi also drankno less than Li Huai.
      The man had rampaged the world thirty years ago, massacring so many. There wasn't the slightest emotion on his face. Could this old man have an untangled knot in his heart, that could only be undone by wine?
      It was deep in the night and they were almost drunk. In the darkest, deepest, most pitch-black portion of the night, a strange and mysterious noise like that of buzzing mosquitoes was heard. It was soft, sharp and thin. Although it sounded far away, it was in fact clear and distinctlike it was close by.
      Tie Yinyi suddenly knitted his thick, silver braid-like brows. Li Huai immediately asked, "What is it?"
      "Nothing. Just drink."
      Emptying a large cup of wine down his throat, he saw someone enter the tent.
      A very strange person, entering with strange steps and gait.
      Someone who seemed to be dancing in.
      With a waist resembling a snakealthough more pliant and adept at twisting and turning. A waist that could casually twist into a position in a way no one could imagine. And suddenly twist out from that position in a way no one could imagine.
      There was a very primitive allure in those gyrating postures. Strange, mysterious and beautiful.
      With a satin-like skin, but without satin's glaring sheen.
      With a sheen that was soft and gentle, with a primitive temptation.
      With legs that were straight and slender. And with muscles trembling with wild elasticity and rhythm.
      A rhythm that could make every man's heart skip.
      Dancing to this beat, that person with the incredible dancing gait sat down in the tent. The hearts of everyone started to beat faster. They seemed to be holding their breaths.
      Li Huai reacted like them all.
      After this, whenever he met a close friend at a drinking session, he would express his admiration.
      "A stunning beauty. I'm sure that everyone will respond," Li Huai said. "I'm sure everyone who's still a man will feel aroused."
      "And you? Were you aroused?"
      "No."
      "So you aren't a man?"
      "Of course I am. I'm like every normal man."
      "Then why weren't you aroused?"
      "Because that she was a he."
      The listeners all collapsed in surprise.
      The man, who looked far more attractive than most women, was twisting and gyrating towards Tie Yinyi and Li Huai. He first gave Li Huai an amorous glance with his utterly bewitching eyes.
      Next, he put a satin box on the table with his slender, shapely fingers, which resembled bamboo shoots in spring.
      He then gave Li Huai another wink, and one to Tie Yinyi as well.
      And kept twisting and wriggling his hips in a dance, with his really pliant waist.
      Li Huai actually felt his lips go a little dry.
      But Tie Yinyi only watched coldly, without any change in expression.
      That man gave him a most seductive smile, then wriggled away like a tornado. He was soon out of the tent.
      His smile and dance was enough to put all these famous courtesans and beauties to shame. Only Tie Yinyi remained unmoved.
      "Not bad at all," Li Huai said. "You can actually feel indifferent to that woman."
      "I would have allowed him to stay if he were really a woman. Unfortunately, that she is a he."
      "He's not a woman?"
      "Neither a man nor a woman."
      "Then what is he?"
      "A transvestite," Tie Yinyi said. "One of the Six Transvestite Demons of Kun Province."
      Li Huai wasn't stupid.
      "I get it now, but not entirely. Why did that transvestite come look for you here?"
      "Why don't you first take a look at what's inside the box?"
      Li Huai opened the box. He froze. Everyone would be dumbfounded by the contents of the box.
      It was only a bean on a red satin cloth.
      A small bean.
      What's so strange about a bean?
      Why make such a fuss about a bean? Why did that weird man bring a bean in here so weirdly?
      Li Huai couldn't quite understand. Which was why he froze.
      "Is this what you so solemnly want me to see?" Li Huai asked Tie Yinyi.
      "Yes."
      "It looks like a bean. Only a bean."
      " Yes." Tie Yinyi still had that grave expression on his face. "It looks like a bean. Only a bean."
      "What's so special about a bean?"
      "A bean, of course, is nothing special," Tie Yinyi said. "If it's only a bean, then of course there's nothing special about it."
      "You mean it's not a real bean?"
      "It's not."
      "What is it then, if not a bean? What's this funny thing?"
      Tie Yinyi's expression turned even more solemn as he stressed each word. "There's nothing funny about this thing at all."
      "Nothing funny about it?"
      "Yes. If anyone were to take it lightly, he would die, taking the next step."
      Li Huai was speechless again.
      Li Huai was not someone often made dumb by another, but he didn't understand Tie Yinyi's words at all.
      "It's a curse. A curse that can kill in an instant."
      "I remember now!" Li Huai cried. "This is Wisteria Flower's bean!"
      "Yes."
      "I heard that if Wisteria Flower sends someone a bean, that person will be considered dead the moment he sees it."
      "Yes, Tie Yinyi said. "That's why I called the bean a deadly curse."
      "Is everyone who saw this bean dead? Each and every one of them?"
      "So far, no one has survived."
      "I heard that Wisteria Flower is a woman. What sort of a powerful woman is she?"
      Tie Yinyi kept quiet for a long time before he spoke, stressing each word. "You're still young. There are many things you don't understand. But remember: there are many women more powerful than you can imagine in this world."
      Suddenly, Li Huai kept quiet too.
      He suddenly remembered the Moon Goddess and Keke.
      Could they be considered powerful women?
      Li Huai didn't want to remember them or think about this question. He only asked Tie Yinyi, "Have you seen Wisteria Flower before?"
      "No."
      Li Huai sighed, with that same unique smile that no one could decide whether was hateful or adorable.
      "Then this bean must be for someone else," Li Huai said. "Even if it's some deadly curse, it's not for you."
      Tie Yinyi stared at him for a long time. His cold eyes seemed a little warmer, but his voice turned even colder.
      "You think it's for you? Are you going to take responsibility for it?"
      Li Huai admitted silently.
      Tie Yinyi smiled coldly. "I've seen many young men who like to play the hero. And many who aren't afraid of death. But it's a pity, you can't snatch this bean away for yourself."
      "I can't?" Li Huai asked.
      Before Tie Yinyi could say anything, Li Huai had struck like lightning. He snatched the deadly bean from the brocade cloth, giving it a flick. Up it jumped, from palm into his mouth. He swallowed it whole, like a tipsy drunkard swallowing a peanut. Then he asked Tie Yinyi with a gleeful smile,
      "Is it me who can't snatch away your bean, or you who can't snatch away mine?"
      Tie Yinyi's face changed color.
      Because that urchin-like smile on Li Huai's face immediately froze after he spoke. His face suddenly turned indescribably and horrendously grotesque, like a man freezing to death.
      Unless you have seen a person freezing to death, you absolutely cannot imagine the expression on his face.
      Tie Yinyi's pupils contracted. The muscles of his entire body also contracted.
      Unless you have seen Tie Yinyi's expression, you cannot imagine someone as calm, cold and indifferent as him looking like he did now.
      That strange mosquito-like noise rang out again at this instant, sounding distinct yet far away.
      Actually, it wasn't that far away now.


      The noise actually came from the strings of a huqin.
      Mosquitoes, of course, cannot play the huqin. Only human beings can.
      A tall, beautiful, busty woman appeared, dressed in opulent clothes, her mature charms still able to flutter most men's hearts. On her arm was the hand of a wan, short, emaciated old man with white hair, dressed in tattered clothes. They had suddenly appeared in the tent.
      Clearly, they had walked in slowly, the one supporting the other.
      Yet, by the time everyone noticed them, they were already inside the tent.
      The old man was playing the huqin.
      An old, worn huqin, with bowstrings already black with age. A few strings had snapped. It sounded like a buzzing mosquito, so indescribably irritating to everyone.
      The old man had a completely shriveled face, his aging eyes sunken deep in their sockets. There was no glimmer of light in them. He was blind.
      They came in and stood quietly in a corner, looking neither like beggars nor wandering tavern singers.
      Yet no one could help not noticing them. They seemed so mismatched.
      Even more amazingly, although the huqin was so close to everyone in the tent, it still sounded far away. Very far away.
      Only one person ignored them. He didn't even glance at them, treating them like they never existed.
      That person was Tie Yinyi.
      At this moment, Li Huai not only had a frozen smile on his face, his whole body also appeared stiff and motionless.
      In fact, although the man wasn't dead yet, everyone could see that he was close to death.
      Yet strangely, worry seemed to have left Tie Yinyi's face. Li Huai's death seemed not to have anything to do with him. Either that, or he had acquired some mysterious charm that could ensure Li Huai's survival.
    Last edited by kychong; 03-18-22 at 06:53 AM.

  2. #22
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    Thank you for yr hardwork, jiayou

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