Death Sutra (死人经) by Bing Lin Shen Xia (冰临神下)

edited January 2017 in Translations

Death Sutra (死人经)

Author: Bing Lin Shen Xia (冰临神下)

Current Status: completed
Genre Tags: wuxia, martial arts, revenge, suspense, and humanity
Translated by Goodman


"The soul rises to the nine heavens, the spirit falls to the nine abysses. The living suffer in grief, the dead settle in peace."

Editors: Lygnaw, Savage Bunny, Moonclipse
TLC: Warlock

Volume 1  The Teenage Killer

Prologue  Two Commandments for a Killer

To kill someone, you may as well do it neatly, don’t drag your feet. If you can be stealthy, then be stealthy. If you can kill in one move, then kill in one move. If you can be ruthless, then be ruthless and exterminate everyone. What white robes purer than snow, what fair competition. What rules of the Wulin and the Jianghu legends? All these are all bullshit. A killer is not an actor, who are you trying to show these tricks to?

There was only one principle for top killers - survive and live long.

Every generation of the "Unique King" educated their descendants like this, and now, Shangguan Fa was teaching his own sons the same words.

The first commandment for a killer is to be covert. Be prepared before making a move. Try your best to occupy the right place and strike at the right time. Hiding in the darkness is your biggest advantage.

Even if your target is a partially paralyzed beggar, you should still treat him as a peerless master. Approach him quietly and from behind, serve a fatal strike.

You think it's shameful, right? That’s right, that beggar was not shameful, he was already dead, and there was a one percent possibility that he was a real peerless master, trying to lure you into the trap by disguising as a beggar.

All is fair in war. The one who wins the battle is a good general, who cares what methods he had used?  Especially the soldiers, they should be thankful for the general's unscrupulous tactics. It is only because of  these tactics that they were able to survive and have the opportunity to enjoy the sweet taste of victory.

A great general will always attack from the enemy's rear and flank; only an arrogant idiot talks about a fight to the death every day.

A killer is not a general, so he should be even more cunning, more insidious, and much more merciless than a general.

Once upon a time, there was one such master; he was born into a martial arts family, And had extraordinary kung fu skill, He rarely ever met his match since adolescence. If one wanted to seek advice, they even had to make an appointment. After a competition, they were all convinced that he was "the best in the world" and was just missing a plaque to hang on his door.

And what happened to this master in the end? Dead. He wasn’t even 30-years-old at that time. His dead body was found lying in the sewer ten days later, decomposing to the point it could not be identified. Even the morticians didn't have the heart to let his parents see his corpse.

Why did he die? Because he had made the mistake of leaving his family and starting his martial adventures in the Jianghu world.

All the people who came for consulting would obey the rules, compete face-to-face. Surrounded by martial arts legends, only with the word of "start", would they would start to compete who was the swiftest, firmest, and most accurate. Everyone was too ashamed to use the low-level tactics, and even the slightest deviation in the moves would be ridiculed.

The master who was accustomed to "fair competition" became vulnerable once he left home and entered Jianghu. Nobody knew who killed him, and nobody knew how he was killed. The only thing people knew was that he received a fatal injury in the back.

Although everyone sympathized with the early death of the young master and openly criticised the sneaky killer, privately, they argued that the master was not a real master. How could a master not be able to defend against a surprise attack on his back?

Even those who had been defeated by the master’s sword gradually changed their tone, claiming that they had been defeated only because they did not want to take any advantage. If it was really an unavoidable confrontation, it would have been hard to say who would win.

What could the master do? He was already dead and had become a bunch of bones; he couldn't even utter a single word to defend himself.

In the end, the mysterious killer had become an idol. Everyone was gossiping about his deeds, claiming to have witnessed his moves before. Some even claimed that they were the killer.

This is the real face of Jianghu legends. No matter what methods you use to climb up high, admirers will naturally change things such that you led a moral and upright life. People would only see that you stood on the peak; nobody cared about the methods used and how many dead bodies you stepped on.

The second commandment of a killer is to restrain from being soft-hearted. When attacking, do it ruthlessly. Make sure to cut off the weeds and dig up the roots. Killing people is not only to ensure silence, but also for the "pretext".

There was one such master. To avenge his father’s death, he studied and trained martial arts for 10 years. After his debut, he immediately swept away all his opponents and gained full confidence. He found his enemy and slew almost all of his family. Even the fowl and dogs were not spared. However, when he was about to kill the pair of orphan and widow, he became soft-hearted. He wanted to be known as a hero,  having the good reputation of "not killing women and children". It was this thought that was his downfall, causing him to be killed later.

Could the orphan and widow have taken revenge on the master? Of course not. That orphan had low talent, and would not be able to match the master's one finger even if he cultivated for a hundred years. That widow didn't know any martial arts and looked so ordinary that she couldn’t sell herself to make a living, let alone to seduce somebody to avenge herself.

However, they were very wealthy. Naturally, their property had been taken away by that master, but the orphan and widow didn't think so. The woman let word get out that, whoever took revenge for her, could share half of the family business that originally belonged to her.

Although that weak woman’s reward was just pie in the sky, could you imagine how many people were touched by such a promise? Countless. Since then, the master's house was visited frequently; he always had to keep one eye open, even when he was sleeping. In the end, he was killed by a nobody.

Did the orphan and widow take back the money? Obviously not. The nameless pawn became indifferent to the mother and son after giving them a small piece of land. He had finally gotten the exclusivity to the family business that was worth millions.

The fate of the orphan and widow's was not important. What counts was the "pretext". Without the orphan and widow, no one had the right to ask for the family business from the master. With these two puppets, anybody in the world had a perfectly justifiable reason to kill the master.

This is the "pretext".

"Fame" is the most illusory, most damaging thing in the world. A real killer never seeks "fame", and never leaves the opponent with an opportunity to find "pretext".


Shangguan Fa, lord of Golden Roc Castle, was the seventh generation Unique King. Technically, he was not a real king as he had no territory. He could, however, go anywhere within the 36 countries of the Western Regions. Although he had no subjects, but whether it was kings, princes or ordinary pawns, their faces would pale when his name was mentioned.

He was the Western Regions’ Assassin King.

No one was clear about how high the Unique King’s kongfu skills had reached. He had never participated in a competition openly. Those who came after him, and those he came after all ended up dead.

The Unique King had very little enemies, as for those that he killed, even their dogs were beheaded.

Shangguan Fa had always followed a killer's two commandments. For him, these two principles were more precious than life. Therefore, you could imagine how furious he was when he learned that his eighth son didn't exterminate all his targets.

The seven generations of Unique King, had killed countless people over the last 100 years. The death count was so high that they could populate a small country in the Western Regions. It had never occurred to them that they may commit a certain flaw: killing the wrong person!

Several heads were lined up on a long table. A known guest could feel the fury of the Golden Roc Castle Lord, and tactfully hid in the shadows nearby.

Shangguan Fa picked up a head and hurled it at his eighth son, whose facial color interchanged between blue and pale. It was this head that had made Shangguan Fa lose face in front of the guest. This was the face that, no matter how much he spent, could not rectify his mistake.

"Are you my son? Are you really my son?"

Shangguan Fa had a slender face, slightly tanned skin and  sunken eyes. The Shangguan family had lived in the Western Regions for many generations, and inevitably, they had  mixed with those of the barbarian descent. When he was angry, his gaze was sternly cool and unmoved, like the Gobi snow-capped mountains.

His question didn't need a reply. The eighth son and his father were like two peas in a pod. The only difference was that the eighth son was relatively young, and currently his face had turned red, like two red-hot irons.

There was only one way to alleviate the raging fury of the Unique King, kill. Even when facing his own sons, he was not soft-hearted. Occasionally in the Shangguan family, it happened that father, sons, and brothers killed each other, because there was only one throne.

But Shangguan Fa hesitated. He suddenly thought of the eighth son's mother. That woman had brought him endless joy. Even after all these years, he could still vividly remember her sly smile and perfect body. She had died of an unknown terminal illness. Like all women in the world, no matter how much energy they had spent on men, their last wish was always for their own flesh and blood.

The disease had broken out very quickly, so when she was dying, she still retained three-fourths of her original appearance. Her sad and beautiful face made her plea very difficult to reject and forget.

"Let Nu'er grow into a man like you."

The eighth son had lost his mother at an early age, and Shangguan Fa believed that he had kept his promise and given his eighth son the most comfortable life, the most rigorous training and the greatest degree of trust.

Wives are a disaster, thought Shangguan Fa. His fury decreased a little, but still, he was  like a beast in its cage, restless and wanting to find an exit. So he pulled out the saber at Shangguan Nu's waist.

Shangguan Fa had to do something, rules were rules. It should never be compromised for anyone or anything. He resisted his urge to kill; brandishing the saber, he cut off the eighth son's right hand, the hand that was used to hold the saber.

The sad and beautiful face faded away in Shangguan Fa's mind.

"Seven days. You have seven days to bring the right head back."

Who was that missing wretch? What was his name? Shangguan Fa only had a vague impression. He had to die by the Savior of Golden Roc Castle. He had already proven his worth by forcing the Unique King to cut off one of his own son's hand.


Shangguan Nu pushed away the arms of his subordinates, staggering out of the great hall. He was as furious as his father. A large bag of jinchuang medicine was used to stop the blood flow from his wrist, but no medicine could block the resentment inside his heart.

He hated his own father for not even giving him an opportunity to explain. Just because the guest said that it was the wrong person, his father believed that he had made a mistake. This was the first time he had the chance to take charge of a task. Originally, this meant that, just like his brothers, he could stand on his own from then on. But now, he had lost his right hand, losing more than half of his martial arts skills and had lost all his face.

He also hated his own subordinates, that group of waste. It was all because of their carelessness that caused him to make the mistake and ruined his great future.

Most of all, he hated the missing teenager that was meant to be dead; yet was still lingering for a few more days. Even killing him a hundred times could not make up for his lost right hand.

Shangguan Nu must vent his anger. His hatred to his father could only be buried deep in his heart, though, as he didn't even dare to speak it out. That missing teenager was not in front of him, so he could only release his wrath on the dozens of killers and sabremen under his command.

Killers were the essence of Golden Roc Castle and sabremen were the mercenary of Golden Roc Castle. They had all made an oath to never betray the young lord.

Shangguan Nu used his left hand to pull out the sabre. His movements looked a tad clumsy, which incensed him further.

The killers and the sabremen had already heard about what happened in the great hall. Now they all behaved like lambs waiting to be slaughtered, fearfully watching the young lord rushing into the house with a pale face.

The sabre moved up and down, down and up. No one could escape, and no one dared to hide. One hand after another was chopped off, like the falling of leaves in winter. No one uttered a word. These people were doomed to sacrifice everything, including life, when they were assigned to Shangguan Nu.

Shangguan Nu didn't know how many hands he had cut, but his mind finally became quiet. These people were all his subordinates. Abolishing their martial arts would only weaken his own strength.

"Go kill! Go fucking kill for me immediately! Apart from the head, you are not allowed to leave any complete corpses!"


  • edited January 2017
    Editors: Bella, Moonclipse, Savage Bunny

    Chapter 1 Leaving The Manor

    Even a beast could experience an awkward period; Although it was strong enough to survive on its own, it was still unwilling to lose its mother’s care and milk. It naively thought that this was normal in life, so it spent the surplus of its energy rolling and playing with insects. Sometimes, even an interesting scene might occur: a young leopard, even bigger than its mother, lying lazily on the grass, sunbathing as it patiently waited for its meal. It would never think that this beautiful moment would eventually be brought to a sudden end. Once the mother was ready to get pregnant again, “The Chosen One” turned into “The Abandoned One”. It would have to wander alone, with every difficult hunt, killing off a little bit of it’s memory of its innocent past. In the end, it was either fated to die miserably or grow into a ruthless killer.

    Fourteen years old, Gu Shenwei was at such a stage. The name was a bit old-fashioned and somewhat childlike, playful innocence still remaining within him. His parents and brothers all felt a little anxious because of this, but he had his own plan: to only grow up “properly” after his elder sister gets married.

    There were only three months left before that day, but the planned life was interrupted by an accident.

    One afternoon, a family servant grazing at the back of the mountain had brought back a piece of strange information; a rider had stopped on the opposite side of the mountain, observing the side of the manor.

    Lord Gu Lun had personally visited the back of the mountain to check, but the rider was already gone. The Lord then rode his horse to patrol around, but he still hadn’t found anything.
    The Gu Family had moved from the Central Plains to the Western Regions two years ago. The manor was in an oasis, located on the south of Tianshan Mountains. The surrounding area within a hundred mile radius was the desolate Gobi Desert. There was only one small village at the foot of the mountain, with a dozen of tenant farmers living there. Strangers didn’t often come to the area, therefore it was no wonder that the Lord had been surprised at the news.

    Gu Lun had originally been a military officer, so he had a high level of vigilance. He asked the family servant for more detailed information about the rider’s clothing and behavior, and then quietly arranged for the guardsmen to stay alert.

    Gu Shenwei’s two elder brothers felt that his father was making a fuss out of nothing. That rider had probably been a herdsman looking for grass, and had automatically left when he saw there were people here.
    Although Gu Shenwei would usually make trouble out of nothing, this time, he had agreed with his father and treated the situation as “serious”. He had solemnly rode a pony, patrolling outside the manor. Any signs of trouble had made him ride over that area fast, making sure to confirm if it had been a rabbit or a bird.
    However, after a few days, no strangers had been found anywhere near the manor. It was all calm, and the days seemed to have had gone on as they used to. Dozens of people in the Gu family had continued to work on preparing the young lady’s dowry. The journey from the Western Regions to the Central Plains was thousands of miles, so many things needed to be prepared in advance.
    Everyone had things on hand. The young lord’s duty had been to run into his elder sister Tsuilan’s boudoir every day, fawning and playing silly, which had made her gut-wrenchingly sad. She hadn’t even moved one step away from home, but her tears had already soaked several pieces of clothing.
    Gu Shenwei had a certain way of thinking in his mind. The Central Plains and the Western Regions were like two worlds. Once they parted, he didn’t know when they could meet again. He just wanted to use these seemingly naive means to let his elder sister remember him.

    The quiet days had only been temporary; the tenth day after the strange rider had shown up, several masked men had sneaked into the manor, creating no small amount of movements.

    No matter what purpose those people had for breaking into the manor, it seemed that they had failed. Although the guards outside of the manor were lax, inside the manor, Lord Gu Lun had taken strict measures and always arranged for guardsmen to patrol at night. The watchful old servant Yang Zheng had been the first to witness the intruder.

    Numerous fights had broken out in various places during the confusion, but the confrontation had been very short. The young lord Gu Shenwei had awoken from his sleep, still tired, and didn’t understand what had happened. The masked men had already escaped.

    No one had been hurt.
    All the people in the manor had awoken. More than a dozen guardsmen had excitedly talked about how they had blocked the masked men. Listening to their tone, it had seemed as if hundreds of people broke into the manor, but the old servant Yang Zheng had been very sure that the masked men numbered no more than five people.

    Gu Shenwei hadn’t seen the masked men and was disappointed, imposing himself on his father and elder brothers with continuous questions. In the end, the eldest brother had sternly ordered him to shut up. Gu Shenwei had reluctantly retracted himself into a large chair, quietly listening to everybody else’s analysis about the origins and purpose of those masked men.

    There had been a lot of forces in the Western Regions and the names of the people and the places were very complex, making Gu Shenwei very confused while he had been listening. His interest gradually diminished, and he had fallen asleep unknowingly. Before he had completely gone into the sleep, he frequently heard the word – butcher. He had thought, No matter what the “butcher” refers to, there’s nothing to be afraid of, my father is a real general.

    In fact, Gu Lun’s general title was not as genuine as his youngest son thought it had been. He worked as an imperial bodyguard of the Central Plains Palace. After his retirement, the emperor only symbolically labeled him as a third-level conquering general.

    While he had worked in the Palace, Gu Lun had actually been famous in the Wulin of the Central Plains, all because of a set of martial arts handed down from the older generations of the Gu family. In order to learn the spear manual, one of the martial arts manuals in the Gu family, Yang Zheng, a kung fu practitioner, had even been willing to be a servant. Both the eldest and second sons in the Gu family could be considered as a master. Only the youngest son, who was neither old nor young, had practiced without any accomplishment.
    The young lord of Gu family had looked handsome and smart. He was also studious, but he had one shortcoming – he had no patience. No matter what he tried, it was temporary and would be ignored after only a few days. Besides, he was the youngest son of the family, so his parents, brothers and sister greatly favored him, which also contributed to his shortcomings.

    Gu Shenwei had been sent back to the bedroom. After he woke up, he did not run into his elder sister’s room as usual. Instead, he swung around the Manor, inquiring about the details of last night’s encounter with the thieves.
    The masked men had collapsed with one hit. All the people in the manor felt that they had won a victory. The only regret was that no captives were seized; not even a drop of blood was left, which was like a fly in the ointment. Towards the young lord, everyone was eloquent, describing the scene as extremely thrilling. 
    Gu Shenwei had become even more disappointed after listening to the story. He had complained continuously to his small bookkeeper, Ming Xiang, blaming him for not waking him up in time.
    Ming Xiang, who was similar to Gu Shenwei’s age, was the only one who dared to argue with the young lord in the family. He spread his two hands in despair, showing a look of disbelief, ”My young lord, you are a kung fu practitioner, you must always keep your eyes and ears open. I’m only a little bookkeeper. I wouldn’t know anything after I fall asleep even when beaten to death; how can I wake you up?”

    Gu Shenwei couldn’t beat the little bookkeeper in the debate, which had annoyed him so much that he ran to his elder sister’s place for comfort.

    Unlike the excitement of the guardsmen, the lord Gu Lun and the old servant Yang Zheng looked very serious the whole day. Their supervision and urging of the guardsmen were stricter than usual, they had also sent out someone to collect new information. Apparently, Gu Lun believed that the break-in from that night was not over yet.

    Both the inside and outside of the manor showed a trace of tension.

    With the enthusiasm fading in half a day, Gu Shenwei was not concerned about the masked men anymore. He had full confidence in his father and brother’s martial arts, and there were also other masters in the manor. Even if millions of troops were coming to attack, there would be soldiers to block. He himself could do nothing but watch the fun.

    Moreover, the current Western Regions was not the same as a dozen of years ago. At that time, the big powers had struggled for supremacy, small countries had fought like dogs, the despotic tyrants had taken the soldiers on, gangs had been everywhere. Robbers often found that their victims were their peers, and ordinary people could only hide at home to seek a blessing from the Buddha. Today, all these belonged to the past. The three major powers, the Central Plains, the Bei Ting, and the Shu Le, had achieved a balance and reached a compromise. More than 30 small countries, old and new, were able to re-stabilize. Gangsters declined in numbers, gradually becoming a legend.
    When they had moved from the Central Plains to the Western Regions, Lord Gu Lun’s words were well thought out. “The Western Regions is now very stable; that piece of the manor will be like a paradise.”

    Gu Lun’s words had been right; the oasis where the manor was located, was indeed like a paradise.
    Gu Shenwei believed in his father, so he was not worried at all. As usual, he accompanied and chatted with his elder sister, wandered around the manor, and argued with the little bookkeeper Ming Xiang. At nightfall, he would be driven by his father to bed, and quickly fell asleep.

    In the dim light, the young lord of the Gu family had felt somebody shoving him. He had opened his eyes with dissatisfaction, asking, “What? Robbers again?”
    The little bookkeeper Ming Xiang had yawned like his young lord, holding a candle, “Not the bandits, it’s the lord.”

    Gu Shenwei had barely gotten up when he saw his father’s lean figure standing in the shadow of the door.

    “Huan’er, put on clothes and send your sister away.”

    Huan’er was Gu Shenwei’s nickname, only his closest family called him like this.
    “Elder sister is leaving already? Brother-in-law still hasn’t sent anybody here yet.” Gu Shenwei was very surprised. there were still more than two months before the original departure date, he was not prepared for that.
    “Well, it had been pushed earlier, things have changed a little bit, so we have to start now.”

    Gu Shenwei, who had been too sleepy and lacked the energy to think, sounded an agreement. With the help of Ming Xiang, he got dressed and wore a cloak. Gu Lun packed the prepared baggage on his back, and inserted a dagger in his belt.

    The inherited martial arts of the Gu family were well known for it’s sabre and spear, but was not proficient at using a sword. The dagger was specially designed for Gu Shenwei. It had a narrow blade that was less than two Chis long, and weighed half a kilogram. [1. Translator’s note: Chi is a Chinese unit of measurement; it is the equivalent of 0.3333 meters.]

    The daggers were usually kept by his father, and Gu Shenwei himself would rarely use one. He couldn’t help being extremely excited, instantly wiping away his drowsiness. He immediately tried to pull the dagger out to appreciate it. Gu Lun held his son’s hand, whispered:

    “You are also a man of the Gu family, use it to protect your elder sister, protect yourself, do not bring it out to show off.”
    “I will.” Gu Shenwei solemnly promised. A scene was immediately played out in his mind; hordes of masked men were attempting to snatch the bride and he held the dagger while standing in front of his elder sister to protect her.
    Gu Lun led the two kids out of the manor from the back door. Everything was quiet, and they did not encounter anybody. There were already three people waiting outside; the young lady Tsuilan, close maidservant Ju Xiang and the old servant Yang Zheng, respectively.

    The servant Yang Zheng was both a master and a friend of Gu Lun. Gu Shenwei had followed him to practise the basic kung fu skills for several years, so he called him “Master Yang.”

    Gu Lun lifted his youngest son up onto the horse. With the shadow of the night lights, his face was even leaner, more like an old-fashioned teacher than usual.

    Small bookkeeper Ming Xiang climbed on the horse by himself, his body wriggling. He was still rather drowsy and strongly dissatisfied with this unexpected escort task. He would have rather stayed in the manor and never come out again than to travel across the desert.
    There were only five horses and five people. The elder sister Tsuilan’s body was wrapped in a cloak, nothing else was with her. She had only brought her closest maidservant out of four and her luggage was also very little.

    ”Where’s big brother and second brother? Where’s Mum? Are you not going with us, Dad?” Gu Shenwei asked wide-eyed, sleepiness totally gone. This pedestrian dress was not like escorting the bride; it was more like fleeing.

    “You go first, we will catch up later.” Gu Lun casually replied. He pats the crupper and urges everyone to leave.

    Gu Shenwei held the reins lightly, clearly wanting to ask more questions, but Yang Zheng passed from his side and said in a muffled voice,


    The horse under Gu Shenwei’s legs was slapped by Yang Zheng into moving forward. When he reined his horse to look back again, his father had disappeared without even saying farewell to his daughter that was getting married.

    Deep in the night, the moon hung from the western sky; it was midnight now. Gu Shenwei was very upset; this scene was totally different from the one he imagined about his elder sister’s marriage.

  • edited January 2017
    Editors: Bella, Moonclipse, Savage Bunny

    Chapter 2  The Pursuers

    The old servant Yang Zheng led the way as the five of them took advantage of the night to sneak out. First, they passed through a field of grass,then they climbed a hill. Upon turning to the only dirt road near the manor, the lush grass disappeared without a trace. A single step took them to a completely different world, one that was covered in hard soil and gravel. The small bookkeeper Ming Xiang groaned with fear.

    Gu Shenwei had been in a half-awake state the entire time. Marching in the night, his elder sister’s marriage, the dagger hanging by his waist, everything seemed so unreal. It was not until the horizon turned bright did he finally become alert, surprisedly that the rays of the sun were coming from behind.

    “Hey, are we heading west?” Tsuilan’s betrothed was located in the Central Plains. This marriage had been decided since Tsuilan’s childhood. To deliver the bride to the groom’s family, they should’ve been travelling to the east.

    Yang Zheng vaguely hummed, as if the young lord’s question didn’t deserve an answer. After a while, he said, “Let‘s go to Shu Le City, there will be officers and soldiers to escort us.”

    ”Shu Le City?” Gu Shenwei cried out in pleasant surprise. Shu Le was the largest country in the Western Regions. Strictly speaking, the manor of the Gu family was located inside this country. Its capital occupied a large area and had a high population density; it was one of the most flourishing places in the Western Regions. Gu Shenwei had heard its name a long time ago, but he hadn’t seen it for himself ever since they moved here two years ago.

    Gu Lun had once served as a senior official in the Central Plains, so Gu Shenwei didn’t feel it was strange  for the Shu Le country to send troops to escort them, he just thought their own entourage was too small.

    Miss Tsuilan had been sitting on the horse, and seemed to have no objection to this arrangement. Gu Shenwei restored his vitality. He kept the same pace as his elder sister, talking about what interesting things they might see in the Shu Le City, and also pulling out the dagger, waving it semi-professionally. Tsuilan was a little bit quiet, and would only occasionally speak a few words to persuade her brother to be more careful.

    Although she was only three years older, Tsuilan’s care for her naughty brother was very motherly-like.

    Because there were two girls, they walked very slowly. The sun was scorching at noon, but Yang Zheng still had no intention of taking a rest. Tsuilan and the maid-servant had already stumbled a bit, but they endured without complaint. Gu Shenwei, was worried about his elder sister,  but also could not stand walking under the blazing sun for a long time, clamored loudly for food and a cool drink.

    Just then, a hasty click of a horse’s hooves faintly came from behind .
    Yang Zheng jumped off the horse and listened quietly for a while. He took off the familiar spear from the right side of the horse and stood in the middle of the dirt road, his white hair fluttering majestically in the wind.
    The others consciously retreated to the roadside, while only Gu Shenwei’s eyes lit up. He also jumped off the horse, drew the dagger, and stood side by side with Yang Zheng.
    “Sister, do not be afraid, I’ll fight the robbers!”

    “Move out of the way.” Yang Zheng held the spear in front of him, using the shaft of the spear to draw the young lord back. He had a high status in the Gu family, except for lord Gu Lun, he was not polite to anyone, especially when Gu Shenwei was still only his disciple.

    Gu Shenwei shook his dagger discontentedly. He still wanted to fight on his own and have an opportunity to help kill the enemy. Just then, he saw a cloud of dust rising from a distance; the pursuers had already come.
    A total of three people, all dressed in black, reined the horses from twenty steps away and drew their broadswords from their sheaths.

    “People from the Gu family should go home.” The man-in-black in the center said, the sound like cold, rusty iron.

    ”The unnamed people should get lost back home.” Yang Zheng straightened the spear.
    The Gu family were known for their “ superbness in  sabersmanship and spearsmanship”. They first practiced the saber, then the spear. Yang Zheng was especially proficient at the spear. Although faced with three enemies, he had no fear.
    The man-in-black on the left side slapped his horse, brandishing his broadsword to kill.
    With his legs set apart, Yang Zheng held the spear, pointing the spearhead forward. He squatted a little, his appearance like a farmer holding a hoe to fight against the leaping wolf.

    The man-in-black rushed closer, broadsword held high in the air, about to slash down. Yang Zheng suddenly stabbed out the spear in his hands.

    The stab was simple and plain with no tricks, but it was also hard to judge the strength. It seemed that even children could escape from it, but surprisingly, the man-in-black couldn’t evade the attack, and he was pierced in the chest. Both his body and broadsword fell down. Not even a single cry was uttered. His horse continued to run for a while before it stopped.

    The other two men-in-black unconsciously pulled the horses and went back two steps.

    Gu Shenwei excitedly took two steps forward. He had never realized that his master’s martial arts level was this high. He had been quite skeptical of his own family’s spearsmanship. Master Yang Zheng practiced the same stabs every day and hadn’t practiced any other moves after so many years. Gu Shenwei hadn’t expected that such a simple stab could have tremendous power. The young lord couldn’t help but look at his master and the family spearmanship with new eyes.
    The two men-in-black glanced at each other, then raised their broadswords, slapping their horses to attack at the same time. The two of them, one left and one right, wanted to attack from both sides.

    Gu Shenwei stepped forward, also wanting to test the power of his own dagger. In fact, he had never learnt any swordsmanship before, and had only absently practiced several sets of sabersmanship. For him, there was no difference between the use of a sword and a saber.
    Yang Zheng drew the young lord behind him with the shaft of the spear again. His legs still slightly bent, he extended his long spear forward, as if he only knew this move.
    Sometimes, using one move was enough. Yang Zheng had been immersed in spearsmanship for decades. Regardless of the weather, he would practice stabbing at least a thousand times every day, and had never stopped. To others, it appeared to only be a common stab, but in his mind, it was actually a move of million strokes. One move matched a million strokes. The more he trained, the more infinitely wonderful it became, which was indescribable.
    Only lord Gu Lun could understand his mind; after all, the spearsmanship was passed from Gu Lun to Yang Zheng. Gu Lun had often sighed, saying that the spearsmanship of the Gu family’s “two superbness” could only be inherited by someone whose surname was not Gu.

    Because of this reason, Yang Zheng was very loyal to the Gu family. As long as he existed, he would not allow anyone to hurt the young lord and the young lady.

    At this moment, the two men-in-black arrived to kill.

    Yang Zheng stabbed the spear out two times in a row. It was so fast, that it seemed as if the two men were stabbed at the same time.

    One of the men fell silently off the horse, while the other screamed with a cry of “Aah!”. Although he swayed in his saddle, he didn’t fall off his horse. He clicked his legs and leaned his body, commanding the horse to flee towards the west.

    Yang Zheng turned around and held the spear with a single hand. He aimed the spear for a while, then threw it with force. The one zhang-long spear shot out, as smooth and fast as a javelin. [1. Translator’s note: Zhang is a Chinese unit of measurement; it is the equivalent of 3.3333 meters.]

    Thirty steps away, the man-in-black was speared through the chest, falling down to the ground like a puppet.

    “Master Yang!” Gu Shenwei cried out with both surprise and admiration. “Teach me spearsmanship!”

    “Stab the target five hundred times a day. You will have the initial success in three years, and after stabbing a thousand times a day, stick to it for ten years. Only then will you master spearsmanship completely.”
    “If so, it’s not as good as practicing ‘balanced power’, after ten years I will be even more powerful.”

    “Well, that works too.” Yang Zheng walked to the corpse and pulled out his spear, wiping the blood off with the man’s body. He then turned back and mounted his horse, continuing to march. He didn’t put the young lord’s enthusiasm to mind; likewise, he didn’t care about the three corpses left on the road.

    ‘Balanced power’ was an internal Qi manual of the Gu family. It was always passed down to the sons of the family, and prohibited to pass to the daughters and those who didn’t have the surname of Gu. It had great power, and was the basis of the Gu family’s martial arts. Although Gu Lun trusted Yang Zheng completely, even Yang Zheng was not taught the ‘balanced power’.

    Gu Shenwei had practiced ‘balanced power’ since childhood. It had been nearly ten years now, but he was still only at the first level, making it the slowest record of practising the manual among all the ancient descendants of the Gu family.

    The five of them continued to move forward. Gu Shenwei was very interested in the origins of the robbers. Yang Zheng was silent, so he had no choice but to eagerly discuss this topic with the small bookkeeper Ming Xiang. His elder sister Tsuilan and her maidservant Ju Xiang slowly recovered from the scare, and would occasionally insert a word.

    After discussing for two hours, Gu Shenwei ‘s enthusiasm extinguished. Suddenly, Yang Zheng said:
    “His kung fu was very good.”

    “Who?” Gu Shenwei asked with surprise.

    “The one that almost ran away.”

    “Him? I don’t think so, he was pierced to death by you, my master, before even making a move. No, his kung fu is good, but the Gu family’s spearsmanship is better, isn’t it?”


    Yang Zheng didn’t argue anymore. A master’s competition often ended in life or death within several moves. The loser didn’t necessarily have inferior kung fu skills than the winner, even if they lost in one move. In a different time and place, the situation may have been reversed. It was very difficult to explain clearly about the subtle differences of a fight to an outsider. Although Gu Shenwei was surnamed Gu and the time he spent practicing his family’s martial arts was not short, he had never attained mastery over the martial arts, and thus could still be considered as an ‘outsider’.

    As they travelled , the sky gradually became dark and Yang Zheng finally decided to stop for a rest. To rest, they were actually sitting on a roadside stone for a short time as there were no inns and villages nearby.

    After rushing for a whole day, Gu Shenwei was exhausted, leaning against his elder sister. Ming Xiang and Ju Xiang took out the dry food and water from the package, serving the young lord the meal.

    Yang Zheng simply ate a few bites, frequently looked east, while still being wary of his surroundings.

    Gu Shenwei disapproved of Master Yang’s excessive cautiousness. Master Yang not only learned spearmanship from his father, but also learned his rigid character. There were three corpses lying on the road, who would dare to follow?

    “Young lord Huan, there is a very important task that I do not know if you are willing to do or not?” In the Gu family, only Yang Zheng called Gu Shenwei ‘young lord Huan’.

    “I’m willing, I’m willing, does it have anything to do with killing the robbers?” Gu Shenwei excitedly jumped up.

    “Hm, but it’s not easy to accomplish so don’t force yourself, young lord Huan.”

    “The more difficult the better.” Gu Shenwei said proudly as he held the hilt

    “I want you to ride ahead to Shu Le City and ask for help.”

    “Ask for help? Aren’t the robbers dead?”

    “There may be more robbers.”
    “Master kills one with one move, I…… kill one with two moves, we can kill them all.”

    “But there are many of them and only two of us. it would be difficult to protect the Miss.”

    Gu Shenwei glanced at his elder sister Tsuilan, ”That does make sense, I’ll go, but to whom? The King?”

    “No, when you arrive at Shu Le City, find Marshal Yang and tell him that I need his help, he will understand.”

    “Okay, Okay.”
    Gu Shenwei stood up to get on a horse, but Yang Zheng grabbed him. “Exchange your clothes with Ming Xiang, yours are not suitable for a galloping horse.”

    The more Yang Zheng arranged things formally, the more excited Gu Shenwei became. Ming Xiang was somewhat hesitant to be a pulled by the young lord to a further distance. They exchanged the clothes in the end.

    But what made Gu Shenwei unhappy was that Yang Zheng had confiscated his dagger. He had told Gu Shenwei that it was unnecessary on the road, “Head west, and you will be able to reach Shu Le City within one day and night.”

    Gu Shenwei leaped onto the horse as the day’s fatigue disappeared without a trace. He showed a bright smile to his elder sister. ”Wait for me to bring help back!”

    He was still very simple and naive, not even asking for the details or not realising how he was about to leave with nothing, not even considering how he would eat or drink on the road.

    Gu Shenwei rode the horse farther and farther, gradually became a little black spot in the horizon. Tsuilan, who had been watching her brother’s figure, suddenly sighed. “I hope the horse runs fast enough, and I hope he won’t turn back.”

    Yang Zheng’s face slightly changed. The Miss’s age was pretty young and her personality was gentle, but she was not stupid. She had seen many things. She already understood most of what had happened.
    “Forgive me, Miss. I racked my brains, but could only save one person.” Yang Zheng said with a voice of grief while going down on one knee.

     “Uncle Yang, please get up. Saving my brother alone is enough to save the Gu family, what are you guilty of?”

    The little bookkeeper Ming Xiang and maidservant Ju Xiang looked at each other. They did not understand what the Miss was saying, but their hearts felt very uneasy.

  • edited January 2017
    Editors: Moonclipse, Savage Bunny

    Chapter 3 Extermination

    Gu Shenwei pinched his thighs hard, driving away his sleepiness. He had been riding a horse almost all night, and was tired, drowsy, and dizzy. Only like this could he have a profound understanding of how hard it is to ride a horse. When they had moved from the far away Central Plains to the Western Regions, he had been curled up in the arms of his family, and hadn’t felt the harshness of the Gobi Desert.

    He stopped the horse. Two roads lay ahead, one towards the north and the other towards the south. Master Yang had said to always head for the west, but he hadn’t mentioned how to choose between the south and north.

    Fortunately, pedestrians had started showing up on the road. Unfortunately, the first few people didn’t know the language of the Central Plains.

    Gu Shenwei was very serious about the task Master Yang Zheng assigned him. He couldn’t wait patiently on the road, so he simply chose the northern road. After riding for a period of time, he finally met a group of herders, of which one even spoke the language of Central Plains fluently. He told Gu Shenwei that he had been travelling the wrong way. After hearing that the teenager was looking for ‘Marshal Yang’, he couldn’t help but laugh.

    “There is no Marshal Yang, within the whole Shu Le Country there is no Marshal Yang.”
    “Master Yang said there was one, so there must be one.” Gu Shenwei said firmly. a herder probably had never seen any dignitaries.

    “Haha, your master is really good at making jokes. In Shu Le country, we don’t have the title of a marshal, we only have a general and commander. Even if there are marshals, why would we use a man from the Central Plains with the surname Yang?”

    The shepherds laughed while walking away, leaving only Gu Shenwei to stay at the place.
    Gu Shenwei was not a fool, he was only naive since he had never been deceived before. His biggest setback in life was nothing but being bullied by his two elder brothers, so he easily believed and accepted his father and master’s words. Once he started thinking over it carefully, he immediately realised that the whole thing was unusual from beginning to end.

    The teenager’s heart was filled with a foreboding omen.

    Gu Shenwei turned around the horse and rode back to the original road, his face stretched tightly. He felt very bad after  finding out that he was excluded from the plan. He would like to know how his father and Yang Zheng would explain once they met again.

    However, even though it was already noon, Gu Shenwei still had not found his elder sister and other three. A group of travelling merchants came from the east. Everyone looked panicked, as though they had just been robbed. One of them, probably out of good intentions, shouted to the teenager who was rushing and riding alone.

    “Go back! Go back!”

    Gu Shenwei didn’t bother with the kind reminder. His heart clenched tighter. The horse under his legs had already been foaming at the mouth, But he still used his whip to blatantly urge it to run faster.
    Half an hour later, he saw a spear standing straight on the roadside from far away. It was shaking slightly, like a flagless flagpole.

    mounted on top of the spear was a head, its white hair floating gently in the wind.

    When he urged the horse closer, Gu Shenwei recognized that it really was his master, the old servant Yang Zheng of the Gu family. His were eyes wide open, seemingly unconvinced of his death.

    He had once killed three people with the long spear, and yet just over one night, he had ended up being beheaded. The ones that killed him must have wanted to show their strength by stabbing his head with the long spear, showing to the passers-by.

    Then, Gu Shenwei saw the corpses lying on the ground. There was more than one.

    Within the vicinity of the spear was Yang Zheng’s body, which was free from scars. The one who killed him had only used one move to neatly remove the head. Gu Shenwei could not imagine the level that the killer’s kung fu skill was at.

    Three more bodies lay nearby. One was the maidservant Ju Xiang. Her chest and face were covered in wounds, and the clothes were stained with blood. She knew nothing about martial arts, but the killer had used more moves. It seemed that the killer just wanted to torture her.

    Another one was the small bookkeeper Ming Xiang. He was still wearing the young lord’s clothes. Gu Shenwei could only identify the body through the clothes, as Ming Xiang’s head was gone. It hadn’t been mounted on a spear, nor thrown nearby.

    Gu Shenwei fell from the horse and onto his knees. He could not help but vomit everything until his stomach had nothing more than spit. He forced himself to see the last corpse. This body looked very strange.

    What comforted Gu Shenwei was that this last corpse was not his elder sister, but a teenager who was of a similar age to him. Like Ju Xiang, the body was covered with lots of scars, but the body itself looked unfamiliar. Gu Shenwei had never seen him before.

    Gu Shenwei jumped back onto the horse and continued to head east; he wanted to know the whereabouts of his elder sister, to go home and find out what this was all about.

    In his impression, the Gu family had no enemies, not in the Central Plains, nor in the Western Regions.

    At dawn, Gu Shenwei arrived back at the small village at the feet of the mountain, where more than a dozen households were the Gu family’s tenant farmers. Usually, at this time, it was a scene of curling smoke, but today every family had closed their doors. Not a wisp of smoke rose.

    Looking up the mountain, the Gu family’s manor had already been turned into ashes.

    Gu Shenwei rode to their own front door and jumped off the horse. He blankly stood there, his heart at a loss. Looking at the pitch-black ruins, he felt that he was trapped in a strange dream. No matter how hard he tried, he just couldn’t wake up.

    How did his home become like this? How did the people die like this?

    Gu Shenwei stepped over cooling pieces of broken tile and wood. He entered each room, as if the roof and walls still existed.

    This was a massacre without rebellion. Each body was left in its original place, already burnt beyond recognition. But according to its location, Gu Shenwei could still roughly determine who it was.

    His father Gu Lun and mother Xu lay side by side, both heads cut off. Gu Shenwei had to push aside blocks of bricks from their body to see the two small skeletons. In his son’s eyes, Gu Lun knew martial arts and was a great hero, and yet even he was unaware when faced with the foreign enemies.
    His two elder brothers also lay in their original places, also beheaded and dead quiet. Their decade-long hard training of kung fu skills didn’t even have a slightest chance to display itself.

    All the servants and guardsmen who died had been left with their whole body; it seemed like the killer was only interested in the owners’ heads.

    But elder sister was still missing. There were only three maidservants’ bodies left in her room. Although the bodies were burnt out of shape, Gu Shenwei could still recognize that none of them were his elder sister.

    This teenager had been worry-free since his childhood, and he was very much beloved. All of a sudden, he had been dropped into being an orphan. His initial feeling was fear Now that he had no home, who would protect and guide him in the future?

    He had been thinking of formally entering the adult world after his elder sister got married, But with the twinkling of an eye, he found himself alone in a strange world, the future was uncertain, and the view in front of him enshrouded with fog.

    Slowly, anger occupied the heart of this teenager. He wanted to retrieve his elder sister, he wanted revenge, to kill all enemies, no matter how many enemies there were and where they were from.

    Once he thought of revenge, Gu Shenwei suddenly restored the reason. He couldn’t go find his enemies with empty hands, he needed some capital.

    Although the Manor had been looted by the killers and most of the property had been swept away, something would always slip through the net.

    Gu Shenwei had never cared about the financial situation of his family, but at this moment, much of the small details in life flashed through his mind, and he deduced some small secrets.

    Under his second brother’s bed, he dug up a small bag of silver. He had almost burst into tears when he pushed aside his second brother’s corpse, but he held back. What was the use of tears now? When he had been a child, this trick might have been able to bring comfort and help, but now it just meant weakness and shame.

    The road to revenge would be very long, he didn’t even know who the enemy was. Right now, the most important thing was how to deal with the remains of his family.

    The owners of the Gu family didn’t even have a whole body left. The bodies were burnt till only charred skeletons were left. Just a single, feather-light touch  would break them. Gu Shenwei carefully carried his two brothers’ remains to his parents’ room, putting them side  the side his parents’ remains.

    It was called a ‘room’, but in fact, there were no rooms left anymore. The roof had collapsed, the walls fallen. This was a place of ashes, tiles, charred wood and copper iron. It wouldn’t take long before this place becomes a wasteland, ruined  with grass.

    Gu Shenwei had seen such a village before, dense bones in the grass. It became a reptile’s nest, trampled freely by the birds and animals passing by.

    He could not allow his loved ones to suffer this torture after they died with incomplete bodies.

    Gu Shenwei suddenly steeled his heart. He went to find a brick, and kneeled on the ground. He smashed the four remains, smashing them very hard, as if they were the enemies. He didn’t know from when he had started crying.

    “God is not fair!”

    Gu Shenwei said bitterly as he scooped the bone ashes and spread them to the air. The Gu family should not suffer such a fate. Although his father Gu Lun practiced martial arts, he had never set foot in the Jianghu grievances. He had been even more cautious in the Palace, had always refused to offend people, and adhered to the tao of tolerance, sometimes even to the point of weakness.

    Perhaps his father had some secret enemies, but the Gu family had already moved thousands of miles to the Western Regions; there was no untied knot, so why would the killers even chase to here?

    Gu Shenwei could not figure out. He blamed this all onto God. He grabbed the block of brick and mercilessly throws it into the air.

    After God’s brutal treatment of the Gu family, it seemed to want to sneer at the Gu family’s young lord. The brick only flew a few feet high, then fell outside the door with an ironic arc and dropped on the flower pots with a dang sound.

    The pomegranate tree in the pot had already become a length of dark wood, the flower pot burnt till brittle. With that sound, it cracked into pieces, falling on the ground.

    Gu Shenwei had used up all his strength long time ago. After throwing the brick, he could not help but fall on his knees. His hands supporting on the ground, he panted. He didn’t even have the strength to curse.

    A moment later, the mockery of God became a show of miracle. Gu Shenwei raised his head and saw that mass of soil still maintained its shape of the flowerpot. He suddenly recalled something.

    Then he ran outside like crazy. He forcefully pushed aside the scorched earth with his hands and threw the flower root aside. He dug up a small oilskin bag. With a little pinch, he determined that a book was inside, and finally felt relieved. He hid it safely by carefully putting it close to his chest, behind the small package of silver.

    He had suddenly remembered the scene he had accidentally saw after their move to the Western Regions one night; his father had stuffed something into the flowerpot. At that time, he was sleepy, only confused about his father’s actions and didn’t analyze it seriously. At this moment of losing all his family members, his mind came across this memory, and he guessed what his father had hidden.

    Inside the small oilskin bag hid the shortcut for practicing ‘balanced power’.

    Balanced power’ had nine levels of yang power and nine levels of yin power. Even Gu Lun, who had trained in it for the longest time, had only reached the fifth level of both yin and yang power. However, there was a faster way to significantly increase the internal Qi for a very short period of time. The only concern was that it had a great hidden danger, and therefore very few people practiced it in the Gu family’s history.

    The highest level of ‘balanced power’ would be invincible, and Gu Shenwei had no doubts about it. Suddenly, God was no longer the culprit of the Gu family catastrophe; on the contrary, it had pointed out the road to revenge for Gu Shenwei.

    Gu Shenwei had just cursed God, so he was more than willing to call this miracle as God’s will. He was only  fourteen years-old and had always been under the wings of his father and brothers. Never had he thought that one day he would bear the heavy burden of revenge. He had even faintly wished that the one who died was himself. Any one of his two elder brothers were more suitable than him to revenge for his family.

    He needed God’s will to support his belief in revenge.

    But now, the most pressing matter was to find his last family member, his elder sister Tsuilan who cared for him the most. She may still be alive, suffering somewhere.

    God’s will played a joke again at this time; a sharp whistle suddenly rang outside the manor, which was particularly terrifying in the silent night.

  • edited December 2016
    Hmm interesting
  • edited January 2017
    Editors: Moonclipse, Savage Bunny

    Volume 1 - Chapter 4  Crossroads
    Gu Shenwei suddenly stood up. He impulsively wanted to go out and have a life-and-death fight with his enemies, but his reason quickly prevailed. Regardless of the origins of those killers, even his father Gu Lun, master Yang Zheng and his two elder brothers didn’t have the chance to fight back, hence he himself was even more vulnerable. His survival was already a big miracle.

    New whistles joined in from all directions, either long or short, like a group of noisy raptors fighting for food. Cluttering with hoofbeats, it seemed that thousands of people had rushed into the ruins of the manor.

    Gu Shenwei bent his body. Just when he hid behind a dilapidated wall, a torch was thrown into the air over his head.

    Gu Shenwei hadn’t even realize what had happened, when the back part of his neck suddenly seized and he was firmly grasped by a big hand. The owner of the big hand drove the horse to jump, causing Gu Shenwei’s feet to uncontrollably leave the ground.
    The hooves had not yet landed, when the big hand suddenly loosened. Gu Shenwei fell heavily to the ground and cried out pain, rolling over twice before standing up. He found himself surrounded by riding sabremen. With the reflections of many torches, all of them behaved like hungry wolves, greedily staring at the little prey.

    This kind of situation happened often in the human world. After an earthquake there was always a rainstorm, and after the rainstorm there was always the wild wind. His bad luck was like an attacked animal; the dripping blood would always attract more carnivores, followed by the scavengers, then the  night-walkers, the flies, and more tiny creatures, until that mass of flesh and blood completely disappeared.

    The annihilation of the Gu family was a deadly wound; the first wave of killers had already been satiated and safely left. Behind the killers, a group of wolves and crows followed.

    They were filthy robbers and thieves, but there were far less than Gu Shenwei thought. In fact, there were only five of them. The whistles, hooves, and torches had enlarged the scene.

    Gu Shenwei had no way of knowing the identities of these people; he could only treat them as the enemy. He was like a cub being forced into the corner, growling a low sound in the back of his throat and showing claws that weren’t sharp.

    A bullwhip quietly attacked from the darkness. Gu Shenwei fell onto the ground again, making the thieves burst out in laughter and excitement. One of them leaned over to seize the teenager and placed him on the horseback. He rashly started searching his body. He found the packet of silver hidden closely to the teenager’s chest. He held it high and cried,

    “Hey, this kid is one of us. He is faster than us!”

    Gu Shenwei now understood the identities of these people. A fierce wave of wrath overcame through him. “Let me go!” He shouted, struggling to grab the small bag.

    The robber laughed even louder, not taking the teenager seriously. He put the silver close to his chest and hit the teenager with a heavy palm. He then took out the small oilskin bag.

    Gu Shenwei’s back felt like it was broken, the pain penetrating through the marrow. What made him even more panicked, though, was that the internal Qi manual was also taken away. It was one of the most precious relics of the Gu family, even more important than his life.

    The robber blew a whistle and ripped away the oilskin. He was stunned. Inside was a thin book. He looked through a few pages, but did not recognize any words.

    “What the hell is this?” The bandit was very angry.

    “Give it back!” Gu Shenwei tried to stand up.

    The robber struck him in the face, almost stunning him. He threw away the book and pulled out ropes to bind him. Then, he jumped off the horse to follow the others and scavenge valuable items in the ruins.

    Gu Shenwei’s hands and feet were tied. He could only creep like insects. He struggled until he finally fell from the horse onto the ground, then he forced his body to crawl to that book.

    He was almost close to the manual when suddenly, a strong breeze blew the manual away. A nearby torch left by the robber started to blow, like a snake’s flicking tongue, long and short. The flames touched the pages of the flying book, immediately burning it up cheerfully.

    Gu Shenwei’s heart seemed to be burnt by the torch too. What he regretted the most was not practising his family martial arts properly, and now he even couldn’t beat an ordinary bandit.

    He rolled onto the book to suppress the flame, and then quickly rolled away to avoid the torch nearby. He bit the book and dragged it a little bit further, finally saving the family manual; but only a part of it, as the first few pages were almost burnt completely.

    He lamented as he looked at the book, but when he read the text, he was stunned; although he could recognise every word, when it was put together, it was clearly an account book. not even a word was related with the internal Qi!

    The hard found and saved ‘manual’ was unexpectedly not the quick way for practising the ‘balanced power’. Gu Shenwei felt like a bucket of cold water had been poured over his whole body. In his simple revenge plan, this secret manual held an extremely important status. Without the manual, just by relying on his own modest martial arts skills, it would probably take at least thirty years of hard training for him to be eligible for the revenge.

    The shortcut of practising the ‘balanced power’ had great side effects. Every generation of  lords from the Gu family would cautiously hide the manual, never allowing his descendants to see it easier. One ancestor was said to have trained according to this method and had his internal Qi develop fiercely and fast, his strength doubled. Combined with their own “two superbness of sabersmanship and spearsmanship”, he was famous for a while, but after three years, he died suddenly and inexplicably. The way he died was very miserable.

    The only thing Gu Shenwei wanted to do was revenge, so naturally he didn’t care about what would happen after three years. Now however, even the hope of dying with the enemies was gone.

    The robbers were good at finding treasures within the ruins. In less than a stick incense of time, they had harvested large bags and small bags of treasures and went back to the courtyard, their mouths blowing whistles, ready to evacuate.

    The robber who had captured Gu Shenwei had also came back, and put two bags on the horse. His gains were not as many as others, so his mood was not very good. He went over to the teenager and kicked him mercilessly.

    Gu Shenwei curled up his body from the pain. The robber grabbed the rope that bound him, wanting to carry him back to the horse.

    At this moment, Gu Shenwei suddenly realized something. The oilskin that held the book was right in front of him, revealing a corner of thin white silk. Before he was carried back to the horse, he opened his mouth and bit the corner of the white silk. By the time he laid on horseback, the white silk had been swallowed in his mouth.

    All the robbers left, leaving the manor and going down the mountain.

    There was another robber near the small village which was at the mountain foot, guarding a dozen prisoners and more than thirty cattle and sheep. These captives had been tightly tied around the arms and strung with a rope. Gu Shenwei was also thrown to the ground, and retied to the last person of the captive group.

    The six robbers drove the prisoners and animals east. Gu Shenwei struggled to follow. He had no time to spit out the white silk from his mouth.

    It was early morning when the robbers stopped at a t-junction. Gu Shenwei felt that this place was not very far from his home, but he rarely left the manor and had no impression of this road.

    The dirt road stretched from the north to the south, through a narrow mountain pass. A few miles down the road, it merged with the main east-west road. Hundreds of people were already gathered at the crossroads.

    Most of the people were wearing old, broken leather, which seemed to have never been cleaned. Oil-billed, shining under the sunshine. Everyone had weapons, with eyes that were vicious like a crowd of beasts that were forced to gather into one group.

    Obviously, these were different gangs among the bandits, and they had divided into several groups, each full of alertness. The palm of the hand was always in a position not far from the weapon, with a gesture that suggested they were ready to fight at anytime.

    Strangely, the vicious robbers only crowded the west side of the crossroad. Although the other side a very wide open area, no one went there, as if that empty area hid some ghosts.

    Even more surprising was that all the robbers were looking towards the north. They all had anxious looks on their faces, as if  they were waiting for someone.

    Four hours ago, Gu Shenwei thought that he had been guided by ‘God’s will’, never expecting that he had become a prisoner of the bandits, and mixed with a group of dirty, panic men and women.

    Among all the prisoners, Gu Shenwei was actually the dirtiest. With sweat, dust, and ashes covering his whole body, he was like a humanoid clay sculpture.

    While the robbers were not paying attention, Gu Shenwei spat out the white silk he had held in his mouth. He did not dare to look at it and just secretly stuffed it close to his chest. He had already been searched once, hopefully there wouldn’t be a second.

    The people they were waiting for was late; the robbers became more restless and upset, cursing. They were not accustomed to be so close to their peers. Two groups had already fought with several people injured, but fortunately no one died for it.

    Gu Shenwei was still confused about why he was captured. So many robbers that were said to be demolished years ago were gathered near the Gu family’s manor. He raised his head and glanced at the robber who captured him, wanting to seek some information from him.

    The robber, like everyone else, was dressed in leather even in summer time. He had a strong body, and his dirty face had a thick beard and a scar on his cheek.

    The scar-faced robber sensed the look below. He lowered his head and stared at the teenager captive with ruthless eyes. “Go escape.”

    Gu Shenwei was not that stupid of course, he was standing in a crowd of robbers. They were also surrounded by the endless Gobi desert, to escape was to court death, not to mention that his hands were tied with a group of prisoners together.

    “You already took the money, why aren’t you letting me go?”

    Though his tone was tough, Gu Shenwei already faintly understood that along with himself, the other men and women, and those animals, they were all money in the eyes of the robbers.

    The scar-faced bandit spat on the ground, the thick phlegm flying over Gu Shenwei’s head. He simply disdained to answer this ignorant kid’s question.

    An old-looking bandit gazed gloomily at the new bandits and prisoners. He suddenly said, “The harvest is not that good, Soaring Eagle.”

    The scar-faced man who was called Soaring Eagle spat again, saying, “The tiger’s mouth takes all.”

    Gu Shenwei‘s heart jumped a bit. The ‘Tigers’ were definitely the ones who killed the Gu family. The robbers clearly knew what had happened. He had always thought that the killers who murdered the Gu family had already hidden somewhere unknown, and were difficult to find.

    Perhaps his eyes showed a special mood, because the old robber glanced at him once more but didn’t mention anything. He continued to look towards the north of the mountain pass.

    Gu Shenwei waited for a long time, but no one mentioned the ‘Tiger’ topic again, forcing to ask, “The tiger you followed is not small.”

    The robber Soaring Eagle’s lips were tight, as if he had not heard those words. After a while, he said coldly,

    “No more nonsense, is there a tiger bigger than the Unique King?”

    The Unique King.

    Everybody in the Western Regions knew the Unique King.

    Gu Shenwei’s heart suddenly sank. Unexpectedly, his enemies were strong.

  • edited January 2017
    Editors: Savage Bunny, Moonclipse

    Volume 1 - Chapter 5  Swordsman

    Two years ago, as soon as he had arrived the Central Plains border, Gu Shenwei had heard a lot about the Golden Roc Castle and the Unique King‘s legend. At that time, he had been interested in the famous killer organization in the Western Regions. He had unintentionally mentioned that he wanted to see the Unique King, but because of this, he had been ridiculed by his two elder brothers.

    In the Western Regions, the Gu family hadn’t have any chances to make a connection with the Golden Roc Castle. As a result, Gu Shenwei had quickly forgotten about the castle and and the King. He would never have imagined that the next time he heard of them would be related with his revenge for the massacre of the Gu family.

    That night, after the masked men had broken into the manor, his father and elder brothers had frequently mentioned the word “butcher”, unexpectedly it had actually been the Unique King. Gu Lun had already guessed that it was the Golden Roc Castle that had intended to do harm to the family, therefore he had deliberately driven his daughter and youngest son away.

    The Golden Roc Castle wanted to exterminate the Gu family, but why on earth would they want to?

    Gu Shenwei was puzzled. The Gu family hadn’t dealt with any outsiders in the Western Regions in the past two years, how could they offend the ‘Assassin King’ of the Western Regions?

    The clip-clop of horse's hooves was suddenly heard. From the north mountain pass came a brown horse, a rider in a grey cloak sitting on it. After seeing him, the robbers became excited, but then disappointed since he was not the one they were waiting for. If there hadn’t been a ban for crossing the line, someone would have already immediately gone to the rider to force him to leave some money for using the road.

    The rider, who was wearing a grey cloak, suddenly saw a group of hideous people gathering at the roadside. He was neither surprised nor panicked. Instead, he urged his horse to trot forward.

    Swoosh! Someone threw a flying dagger at the rider. People were not allowed to cross the border, but weapons could.

    The rider’s grey cloak swept over like a cloud. He raised his right arm and grabbed the flying dagger with his bare hand, casually putting it in a leather bag, “Got it.”

    With a lift of his cloak, a long sword was exposed, hanging by the horse’s side.

    “Swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain!”

    Someone in the crowd cried out. Nearly a hundred robbers seemed to have been cast by a spell. All of them pulled their horses to retreat two steps almost at the same time. Especially the one who threw the flying dagger, he didn’t even dare to utter a sound. Some of the prisoners on the ground understood what had happened, while some were confused, but they were affected by the fear in the atmosphere, so they stepped back together.

    Gu Shenwei, who stood at the rear of the line, was almost knocked down by the people in front, but he still tried to look at the front by standing on his tiptoes. He had never heard of the ‘Swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain’, and didn’t know why others were afraid.

    In front of him were two teenagers similar to his age. Like the robbers, they obviously knew the horror of the ‘Big Snow Mountain’, and lowered their head to hide behind the adults.

    The rider from the ‘Big Snow Mountain’ revealed a slight smile; his cheeks were red from the exposure to the wind, snow, and sunshine. He habitually narrowed his eyes, as if he was always looking for something.

    “Members of the Soaring Eagle gang, step forward.”

    His voice was not high, and he didn’t speak harshly, nor looked scary, but it had an irresistible power. Gu Shenwei observed as the face of the scar-faced bandit who was called Soaring Eagle turn blue.

    The Soaring Eagle gang was a small gang with only six people. It wasn’t even convincing to be called a gang. But Soaring Eagle, after all, was a leader, so he couldn’t retreat like a turtle retracting its head into its shell.

    “The Soaring Eagle is here. This is the territory of Golden Roc Castle, what do you dare to do?”

    The rider in a grey cloak glanced at the empty land of wilderness. “There is still one step left. Besides, when have you ever heard that the men of Big Snow Mountain were afraid of the ‘Butcher King’.”

    Delight emerged in Gu Shenwei’s heart. So the Unique King also has enemies. He had always thought that no one would dare touch the Golden Roc Castle. In this way, his hope for revenge seemed to become much bigger; he thought he should find a way to join the Big Snow Mountain sect.

    Soaring Eagle‘s face became greener. His brothers held their sabres while in a panic. The east side of the road was the territory of the Golden Roc Castle. As bandits, none of them were allowed to cross the border, not to mention being protected.

    Soaring Eagle gritted his teeth and exclaimed, “Brothers and sisters, why are we 81 Gangs of Tian Mountain not united? Why does nobody utter a sound when we are being bullied?”

    The other bandits looked at each other. Nobody spoke. They were all small gangs, barely making a living. This was the first time that they heard the so-called ‘81 Gangs of Tian Mountain’, so if they didn’t have any hatred, then they didn’t think there was a need to draw the sabre to help.

    The rider from the Big Snow Mountain sneered. “81 Gangs of Tian Mountain, what a big name, I am very scared. However, I’m only looking for the Soaring Eagle gang, it has nothing to do with the others.”

    These words reassured the other robbers. Not only did no one stepped forward, they also moved backwards a bit to keep a distance from the Soaring Eagle gang.

    Although Soaring Eagle knew that he had reached a dead end, he was a bandit who had experienced hundreds of fights and had survived the bandits’ ‘Golden Age’ a decade ago where there were gangs everywhere. His bones were left with a stubborn cruelty. If it couldn’t be avoided, he would fight hard instead; there was no use asking for forgiveness.

    Soaring Eagle spat phlegm out. This was the last dirty thing he would spit from his mouth.

    He jumped off the horse, and pulled out his sabre, his brothers doing the same. Six men lined up, six sabres gleamed in the sun. The snow-white stainless blades were a sharp contrast to their dirty clothes.

    The rider from Big Snow Mountain gave a smile of satisfaction. He untied his cloak and put it on the saddle. He then jumped off his horse and pulled out his large broadsword from the side of the horse.

    His broadsword was almost as wide as an adult’s palm. With the tip of the broadsword touching the ground, the hilt was as high as the rider’s heart; the blade had some obvious dents, as if the owner had used it to cut wood.

    “My name is Long Feidu.”

    “What you’re called means shit to me. Anyway, you are a man from Big Snow Mountain, we have to fight to the death.” Soaring Eagle led his five brothers and slowly moved forward. The six separated and formed an arc, encircling Long Feidu.

    “I had to let you know who killed you.”

    Long Feidu held the broadsword with his two hands, the tip of the broadsword still on the ground.

    The six members of Soaring Eagle gang approached step by step. They didn’t have a habit of declaring their names before killing somebody; these bandits were more accustomed to the principles of the Golden Roc Castle: The result justifies the means; kill first, speak later.

    Gu Shenwei had a very good impression of the rider Long Feidu. He was trying to stand on his tiptoes and see a little more clearly, but the two boys in front of him were totally frightened, always squatting behind the adults. With the connection of the same rope, Gu Shenwei was not able to stand straight, and he couldn’t see what was happening at the front.

    A shout came from nowhere, then weapons clanked twice, but then it was all quiet again. It sounded more like a bored blacksmith casually beating tools than an intense scene.

    But the onlooking bandits and the prisoners had all exclaimed in unison.

    Gu Shenwei jumped high over the head in front of him. He was just able to see Long Feidu lifting his broadsword high. Five out of the six from the Soaring Eagle gang had already fallen. Only the leader, Soaring Eagle, was standing stunned opposite, his sabre fallen on the ground. He raised his left arm in front of his face, as if to withstand the broadsword.

    Although Gu Shenwei only caught a glimpse, he firmly remembered this scene and hadn’t forgotten it for many years later. What gave him the deepest impression was not Long Feidu, who held the broadsword standing like a God, but Soaring Eagle, who was scared, completely losing the will to resist.

    At this moment, an idea suddenly appeared and formed in his mind. It was so easy to kill a person. None of those “Sabre comes and the sword goes”, ’Tossing maneuvers”, “Wonderful tricks and superb secrets” showed up. He had systematically practiced boxing, sabersmanship, and now all of them seemed to be naive, exaggerated, and useless.

    Gu Shenwei caught one glance before he was pulled down by the two teenagers in front of him. The nearest teenager stared at him, as if he was warning him not to move.

    There was a muffled sound of blunt objects cut by a sharp sword. Gu Shenwei clearly heard it this time, and also the sound of a body falling on the ground; he heard them all.

    “I’m ‘Tan Duo Feng’ Long Feidu from Big Snow Mountain. If there is anyone who wants to get revenge, they can come for me now, after, or whenever.”

    No one wanted to take revenge for the Soaring Eagle gang. The bandits were thinking about only one thing; Never provoke this person, Soaring Eagle must have lost his mind to become an enemy of this guy.

    The captives in the front suddenly became restless. From the gaps, Gu Shenwei saw Long Feidu walking towards them, the broadsword still dripping blood on the ground as it had not been sheathed yet.

    This person wanted to put his hands on the captives? Gu Shenwei didn’t feel fear like the other captives, he was a little bit excited. He would like to tell Long Feidu his own background and deep hatred. He would even like to worship him as a master, and seek the help of the Big Snow Mountain.

    He didn’t think this would be difficult. He believed that the emergence of the Big Snow Mountain rider was also part of the God’s will.

    But the two teenagers in front of him bent down too much, almost pulling down the people in front and behind them. Gu Shenwei was surprised to see the two shaking bodies. He suddenly understood. Long Feidu must have come for these two teenagers. Them panicking more than others had explained everything.

    In the eyes of Gu Shenwei, Long Feidu was already like a legendary martial arts hero who fought the strong and help the weak. So then why were the two teenagers were so frightened? He was puzzled.

    Long Feidu slowly walked over. The crowd immediately lowered a bit upon contact with his eyesight. He stopped at the end of the lined group.

    To Gu Shenwei’s surprise, the two teenagers didn’t show any fear at this time. They straightened their bodies higher than the adults attached to them, and gazed directly at the rider with broadsword.

    Long Feidu’s eyes narrowed, but his face was still motionless. He raised his broadsword.

    From such a close look, the long broadsword seemed heavier than it was; it didn’t even need a blade, it could kill anyone with its own weight.

    With this move of the broadsword, perhaps a bunch of heads would be cut off. But the prisoners behaved like the dead Soaring Eagle, too scared to move. They had completely given up.

    Only Gu Shenwei didn’t show the slightest timidity. Instead, he made a half step forward and sincerely looked at Long Feidu.

    “You came from the Big Snow Mountain, so you must be a real martial hero.”

    Gu Shenwei had never heard the people talking about the Big Snow Mountain, but this didn’t affect his judgment on Long Feidu.

    “No, I’m just a swordsman.”

    “Even a swordsman doesn’t kill indiscriminately, only …… the Golden Roc Castle does.”

    Light flashed in Long Feidu’s eyes. He seemed to be really touched by these words, but his weather-beaten face quickly became as cold as the snow-capped mountains. With his breath held, he gripped the broadsword more tightly.

    Gu Shenwei suddenly felt as though nothing was under his feet, and his heart seemed to have stopped beating. Just because of a superfluous word, he had to die with two unknown teenagers.

    Long Feidu’s broadsword move slanted. This move could cut off more than one head, but he changed his mind midway. He turned around and cut down with his broadsword.

    An arrow was cut through the middle and fell upon his feet.

    “Back-stabbing, you must be dogs of the Unique King.”

    “So audacious, you must be a little reptile from the Big Snow Mountain.”

    From the northern pass of the mountain came a rider in black. Behind him were two more riders, each holding a big flag. The flag had a red outline, and was embroidered with a golden roc in the middle.

  • edited January 2017
    Editors: Savage Bunny, Moonclipse

    Volume 1 - Chapter 6   Killer

    Gu Shenwei knew that flag.

    It was two years ago, the Gu family, included dozens of people, were leaving the Central Plains and passing through the desert to the unknown Western Regions. They had hired plenty of labour on the way, including a man that had carried a Golden Roc flag. He was not a leader, but he had always walked at the front of the team. He was also not a servant, so he hadn’t done any chores. He had stayed at a suitable distance from the employer. The horsekeepers had been a bit afraid of him.

    The journey to the Western Regions had been depressing and boring, but there had been one thing Gu Shenwei did remember clearly. The journey had lasted a month, but they had not encountered any attacks from the robbers. It seemed that the Lord Gu Lun’s judgement on the situations of the Western Regions had been confirmed. In fact, it was because they had been protected by the Golden Roc Castle.

    The Golden Roc Castle had once been the guardian of the Gu family, which made Gu Shenwei more confused; why did the protector become the butcher two years later? He even began to suspect if the robber Soaring Eagle was wrong.

    The two men holding the flag stayed in place while the rider in black came by himself, stopping more than ten steps away from Long Feidu. He jumped off his horse and unhurriedly put away his longbow. He acted as though he was preparing to say hello to a casually met old friend.

    “A swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain visits the territory of the Golden Roc Castle, what a surprising guest.”

    “Hey, a killer from the Golden Roc Castle dares to fight alone, it’s also very rare.”

    “I’m compelled, but I have somehow practised how to fight for several days.”

    “I’m ‘Tan Duo Feng’ Long Feidu from Big Snow Mountain.”

    Long Feidu held the broadsword with both hands. The broadsword was still slanted to the ground.

    “I’ve heard a lot of you. I’m a nobody from the Golden Roc Castle, it’s not worth mentioning.”

    The killer in black pulled out his sabre. This sabre was not the same as the ones used by the robbers. The sabre in his hands was straight and narrow, no more than two Chi long. [1. Translator’s note: Chi is a Chinese unit of measurement; it is the equivalent of 0.3333 meters.] Compared to Long Feidu’s broadsword, the killer’s sabre was like an embroidery needle.

    The two of them walked closer and closer. The onlookers all held their breath, waiting for the blow of life or death.

    Gu Shenwei was nervous inside. He looked forward to the victory of the Big Snow Mountain swordsman. He had also made up his mind that no matter how Long Feidu would treat the two teenagers later, he would not intervene anymore.

    The killer and the swordsman walked closer. They were less than three steps away from each other, and no one attacked. It was soon less than one step, and still no one attacked. The two of them just stared at each other, as if they were acquaintances passing by, nodding to each other.

    Gu Shenwei’s heart was suspended in his throat. He had watched a fight many times, and he himself had also participated in one several times. The two sides always squared themselves into a posture long before they were close, and kept changing their postures while they approached each other. Nobody had ever behaved the same as these two. It was so casual that even killing intent was not shown.

    The killer and the swordsman were side-by-side now, and they were separated by less than a step. With one more step, they would cross each other, and yet they still turned to stare at each other. It happened in just a moment. The killing intents suddenly burst out from nothing; it was very domineering. The sabre and the broadsword moved at the same time.

    Even if the crowd was already prepared, even if they kept watching, the crowd was still surprised. Their body unconsciously leaned back, as if the sabre and the sword were targeting at their vital parts.

    The two of them attacked as fast as lightning, but there was no intersection with the sabre and the broadsword. The killer in black retreated faster than the speed of the moving sabre. In the blink of an eye, he had retreated to five steps away, just at the edge of the broadsword’s attacking range.

    Long Feidu didn’t wait for his broadsword move to finish and also held it back.

    There seemed to be no winner after the first move. Gu Shenwei thought that the swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain was stronger, but he was not very sure because he remembered the words his father Gu Lun had once said.

    Gu Lun had always shown indulgence to his youngest son. He had never forced him too hard on practising kung fu, but once, when Gu Shenwei was overcritical of another’s martial arts skills, Gu Lun had shown an unusually serious look. He pointed to his own eyes first, then pointed at his own hands, and said.

    “It is much harder to have a good eyesight than a pair of powerful hands.”

    Gu Shenwei had made a small deprecating shrug at that time, but now he believed.

    Long Feidu had killed six gang members in several moves, while the killers from Golden Roc Castle had quietly killed dozens of people in the Gu family. The black killer in front of him might not have been one of them, but his kung fu skills couldn’t be any less than those killers. Both the killer and the swordsman were real masters, but when they fought for life or death, the moves were so simple, to the point of being crude. It was nothing but a hack and a stab, but it had the same effects as the old servant Yang Zheng’s thousand years unchanged long spear stab.

    Instead, for Gu Shenwei himself, although he had learnt several sets of boxing as well as sabresmanship and could comment clearly and logically about the different martial arts schools of the Central Plains, he wasn’t even able to fight back the most ordinary robbers.

    Flashy, this was the word his father Gu Lun had said while smiling and shaking his head.

    The killer and the swordsman clashed again. This time they did not slowly approach closer, but like arrows pulled at full strength, a leopard with taut muscles. They jumped up, in less than a moment, the sword and the sabre collided, making a harsh grating sound.

    It was the black killer who still retreated first. This time, he retreated farther than ten steps away, looking nervous and as if his hair stood on end.

    Long Feidu waved the long broadsword again and moved a big step forward.

    Gu Shenwei’s heart flipped. He thought that the swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain would pursue and strike a fatal blow to his opponent, but he was wrong. Long Feidu only made one step before he stood still, the two sides caught in a stalemate.

    The two of them confronted each other like statues for a long period of time, which made the surrounding audience bewildered, but nobody dared to rashly applaud. They could be killed if they stood on the wrong side.

    “Mercy powder, I should have thought of it.” Long Feidu suddenly kneeled down with one leg, his hands still gripping the hilt tightly but the broadsword was no longer a weapon to kill; it was only a support instead.

    Gu Shenwei didn’t know what ‘mercy powder’ was, and he was not the only one that knew nothing about it. However, they all knew one thing; the swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain was plotted against in secret.

    “You swordsmen are always like this, ‘should have thought’, but never prepared.” The killer in black’s tone was full of disdain, showing no trace of mercy to the defeated opponent.

    “The ‘mercy powder’ has no taste and flavor, and the victims will become weak and feeble. It did great harm to lots of people. Fifteen years ago, the Unique King had sworn to destroy it and forbade its use forever, and now it shows up again. So it seems the Golden Roc Castle is the same as before, still not trustable.”

    “Hey hey, it seems that you know a lot, but you are wrong. This is not ‘mercy powder’, so the honorable king’s oath was not broken, and the Golden Roc Castle is still credible. In particular, the notion that Golden Roc Castle never lets its enemy stay alive, you have to believe that.”

    The killer in black said while he walked behind Long Feidu, the sharp sabre on the swordsman’s shoulder.

    That’s it? Gu Shenwei couldn’t believe it, he had been looking forward to Long Feidu’s fight back. But the idea that good people should defeat bad guys, fairness should prevail was just a teenager’s expectation. The swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain also ‘should have thought of’, but too many ‘should’ would never become reality.

    The sabre of the killer slowly pierced into the body, until only the handle was left outside. Long Feidu didn’t resist. He died quietly, his body still on his knees, kneeling there by leaning on the broadsword. Not far away lay the six robbers who died under his broadsword.

    The black killer still held his sabre, which was still dripping blood. He turned back and looked at the dozens of robbers.

    He killed a real swordsman, and though his means was dishonorable, he was still the winner. So although everyone knew clearly that they would likely be able to kill the killer if they fought together, all the robbers, no matter how outrageous they behaved when robbing the people and livestock, were all like little sheep facing a vicious dog, frightened and obedient.

    The killer looked at others with scorn. He wiped the blood on the sabre with the body of Long Feidu, put the sabre into its sheath, then slowly walked back to his horse. He climbed on it and pondered for a while, then said coldly,

    “Finish the business and immediately go away, none of you are allowed to stay.”

    The robbers felt relieved. They all nodded and agreed.

    The swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain was disappointing. Gu Shenwei was more dismissive of the robbers‘ performance. The dawn of revenge had just appeared and faded away.

    Gu Shenwei couldn’t think of how to defeat his enemies from the Golden Roc Castle. He had originally thought that once he mastered the ‘balanced power’ by using the shortcut to practice, he could go and kill all the enemies, but now he realized that it was not that easy.

    However, he understood one thing. His father, Master Yang Zheng, and his two elder brothers, they died not because they had not been able to fight back, but because they must have been plotted against, the same as Long Feidu was.

    The killer in black drove his horse forward, turned east at the junction, and then entered the territory of the Golden Roc Castle. Behind him, were two men holding the flag closely followed, like two lionesses following behind the male lion who had just beat the invaders. The robbers waiting at the west of the crossroads were nothing but a group of wild dogs hunching their shoulders.

    “Finish your business and immediately go away.” Gu Shenwei quickly understood the meaning of these words, but he also found that he himself had become a commodity.

    Shortly after the Golden Roc Castle killer left, a group of traveling merchants came from the northern mountain pass. It was arranged in a long queue, with some riding, some driving the trolleys, different wearings and as many as hundreds of people.

    The businessmen and the bandits who had clear boundaries and were often at two opposing sides, had reached a tacit understanding of the peace on this road. Both sides were waiting for each other. The robbers took out the stolen goods and people, behaving as a merchant servant who had just started his career. They walked to the merchants to sell their own things, most of which they couldn’t even tell the names.

    The businessmen enjoyed this kind of sale. It was not only cheap, if they had good luck, they could also buy a rare treasure with unknown origin from the robbers who didn’t even know its value. The most critical thing was that the T-junction was safe. Even the most brutal criminals had to suppress their impulse and dare not touch a finger of the merchants who carried gold and silver.

    The businessmen had paid the protection fees to the Golden Roc Castle - the largest ‘bandits’ of the Western Regions, in exchange for privileges of not being harassed by small groups of bandits.

    The trade was in full swing, the bloody smell of the seven dead bodies instantly washed away. People came and left quickly. When Gu Shenwei peered through the crowd to look at the swordsman from Big Snow Mountain, he found that the body had already fallen down to the ground, and the broadsword was gone. Apparently the other corpses were also plundered.

    Gu Shenwei was full of emotions and didn’t know what to do. The two teenagers in front of him, though, didn’t have much emotional thoughts.The two of them had just escaped from death. The ‘life-saver’ turned out to be a killer from the Golden Roc Castle, and now they had to help themselves.

    The two of them opened their mouth to bite the rope. The captives nearby were stunned for a moment, before they all realised that this string of people had been free, their ‘owners’ – the six robbers from Soaring Eagle gang’ – were dead .

    However, at this T-junction dominated by bandits and merchants, owner was clearly not a rare thing. The captives had yet to get rid of the rope by biting when several businessmen had already came. They didn’t say anything and immediately commanded their servants to cut the rope. They were ready to accept this group of ‘goods’.

    Some of the captives obediently followed their new ‘masters’ back, while some of them wanted to explain themselves to the businessmen.

    “I am not a slave!”

    Gu Shenwei shouted towards the man with a big beard who came for him. The other two teenagers in front used another language and also clamored. No matter what languages they used, the only response they received was laughter.

    The big bearded man put away the knife used for cutting the rope and grabbed one of Gu Shenwei’s arm to take him on the trolley. Gu Shenwei was full of anger with nowhere to vent, so he used full of strength and kicked the big beard.

    Although Gu Shenwei was young and his martial arts was not well practised, the power of the kick was still not small. The big bearded man screamed with pain, then angrily striked a serious blow at Gu Shenwei’s lower abdomen.

    The punch was even greater than the strength of Gu Shenwei’s kick. Gu Shenwei had thought of a good way to defend himself, but he didn’t even have the time to do it before he was hit staggering. The big bearded man attacked much heavier than the Gu family’s guardsmen.

    The big beard wanted to beat him again, but the businessman snapped a few words, which probably meant that he should not kill the slaves, because that was the ‘goods’ they just bought.

    The big beard who got kicked felt very begrudged. He deliberately let the teenager’s head hit the wooden gate of the cage trolley when he opened it. Gu Shenwei only felt dizziness in his head before his whole body was thrown into cage.

    There was another person at the place he was thrown at. The man screamed and kicked Gu Shenwei away. Gu Shenwei rolled to one side, and only restored his consciousness after a while. He found out that the caravan had started out again, heading for the east to follow the footprints of the Golden Roc flag.

    This was not the only cage trolley, there was a string of them behind. The ones pulling the trolleys were strong oxes with double strong horns, with many ferocious barbarian cavalries  guarding on both sides.

    Gu Shenwei looked back inside the cage trolley. There were more than a dozen children curling up on the hay stack, staring fearfully at him with cub-like looks. He didn’t know which one was the one he had pressed against.

    The hope for joining the Big Snow Mountain was lost, and Gu Shenwei could only return to his original road of hope. He reached out to touch the white silk close to his chest, to check if it had the text which he was most anxious to see or not.

    The white silk was gone.

    Gu Shenwei‘s mind boomed. He searched his whole body inside out, but the white silk was indeed gone, and there was no trace of it in the nearby haystack.
  • I suggest you change the translation name to Death Sutra as  《金刚经》 is translated to 《Diamond  Sutra》
    Anyway, thanks for your work 
  • copasi said:
    I suggest you change the translation name to Death Sutra as  《金刚经》 is translated to 《Diamond  Sutra》
    Anyway, thanks for your work 
    Hi copasi, I have sent you a message. Please read it and let me know. Thanks.
  • edited January 2017
    Editors: Moonclipse, Savage Bunny

    Volume 1 - Chapter 7  The triangle face

    He must have lost the white silk when he had been fighting with the big bearded man. Gu Shenwei grabbed a wooden bar of the cage trolley and looked back. He could only see a string of ox carts, and after a while, when the group made a turn, he was able to look further.

    The T-junction was out of sight, the group having already moved far away.

    Gu Shenwei’s hands clenched so hard that his fingers became ghostly pale. He kept staring back. He couldn’t believe that his family’s secret manual was simply gone.

    “Is……there anyone of you who has seen a white piece of cloth?”

    With one last glimmer of hope, Gu Shenwei turned around and looked at the other kids in the cage.

    He didn’t know if it was because they couldn’t understand the language of the Central Plains or if they were not willing to speak, but all the kids didn’t answer. In fact, nobody even raised their head to glance at the newcomer.

    “A piece of white……”

    Gu Shenwei tried to describe the size of the white silk with his hands, but he gradually lost his confidence. All the kids in the cage looked skinny and wore ragged clothes. They definitely would not be interested in a piece of cloth.

    “They don’t understand what you are saying.”

    After the ox cart moved for a while, one teenage boy at the corner finally spoke up.

    This teenager was around Gu Shenwei’s age. He had a delicate and sharp face. Compared to the other kids, the clothes he wore were clean. The cage was small, but he could occupy a corner as his own. Now he was playing with a grass stick in his hands and staring at the new teenager with judging looks.

    “White silk, a piece of white cloth, have you seen it?” Gu Shenwei asked eagerly.

    The triangle-faced teenager thought for a while, then shook his head. “No. Is it very important?”

    Gu Shenwei sat down heavily, his mind was blank.

    “Where are we going?” He asked unconsciously after a while.

    “Jade City.”

    Gu Shenwei knew this city. It was a very important city in the Western Regions. As a transport hub, it connected with other cities and lots of traveling merchants gathered here. It was a paradise for the befuddled life and a hell for making living with the sword and sabre. He had stayed there for one night once, and ——-he suddenly recalled, isn’t Golden Roc Castle outside of Jade City?

    Gu Shenwei raised his head just in time to catch the triangle-faced teenager’s looks. It seemed that there was something strange about him that could continually attract the teenager’s attention.

    “You know me?” Gu Shenwei felt a bit annoyed and asked. Only the two of them in the cage could speak the language of the Central Plains, but he had fallen to become a slave, and had also lost the critical secret manual of the Gu family. Therefore, he really wasn’t in the mood to make a new friend.

    “A kid from a rich family.” The triangle-faced teenager said with a sneer. His tone was frivolous, full of irony and disdain.

    “So what?” Gu Shenwei grew angry, even though the anger going to his head mostly had nothing to do with the triangle-faced teenager.

    “Nothing, when we arrive at the Jade City we’ll be sold, but nobody will buy you to be a son or young lord. I’m just kindly reminding you, it’s not easy to change from a young lord to be a servant. The servants have their own rules and ways of living, do you want to listen to my advice?”

    The triangle-faced teenager’s words made sense, so Gu Shenwei nodded.

    “Wash your ass clean.”

    The triangle-faced teenager said seriously, his face showed a smile, the smile became bigger and bigger and finally became an insane laughter.

    Gu Shenwei didn’t understand those words for a long time, he was just annoyed by the triangle-faced teenager’s unrestrained laughter. Then he gradually felt the indecency meaning of those words, but the best time to fight back was gone. In his limited luxurious lifetime, he had never learnt how to cope with this kind of situation.

    The triangle-faced teenager had used his words to win and became more unrivaled. After he had calmed down, he pretended to be serious and said,

    “Don’t worry, a young lord like you, grows to look quite clean. When we arrive at the Jade City, someone will certainly rush to buy you. You will have a prosperous future, haha, and your ass will not be idle.”

    These words were clearly an insult.

    Gu Shenwei leaped up and punched the triangle-faced teenager, but he was blocked by the kids in the middle. They rolled up into balls, and the screams of pain resounded in the cage finally caught a guard’s attention. The guard didn’t say anything. He merely extended a stick and poked randomly in the cage.

    The kids quickly separated. Each of them had been poked, even Gu Shenwei, but the triangle-faced teenager in the corner still had not been hurt.

    The triangle-faced teenager suppressed his laughter until the guard left. Then he let go, holding his stomach as he laughed to to the point of being breathless.

    Gu Shenwei couldn’t imagine that there was such an annoying person in the world. The triangle-faced teenager once replaced the killer of Golden Roc Castle and became his most hated person.

    Gu Shenwei was not the only target of the triangle-faced teenager’s teasing. He would always be silent for a while, and then suddenly start talking unceasingly, either subtly or openly. His words were all about the miserable experience of being a servant. He would not stop until the audience was either irritated or frightened into crying.

    Unfortunately, he had a talent of speaking several languages. The kids in the cage came from different places, yet he could talk with almost every one of them. To match up with the astonishing rumors, he also made rich expressions and actions.

    “Some lords like eating kids, especially the ones as young as us. Every year, these slave traders will pick some kids with plump meat and sell them to the lords that have a particular appetite. The new lord will openly declare that you are not obedient, not obeying the lord’s orders and wanting to escape. He will then tie you up and wash your ass clean. Then he will torture you while he cuts your flesh to eat, piece by piece. Fry, boil, and use all kinds of methods. You would be alive watching him eat you.”

    The triangle-faced teenager bared his two rows of white teeth, stuck his tongue out and licked in a circle. “Wash your ass clean” was his favorite catchphrase.

    Only when an eight or nine year-old kid cried out, was he finally satisfied and shut his mouth to rest for a while.

    It was not long until Gu Shenwei got used to the triangle-faced teenager’s sarcastic ridicules and endless chanter. His mood was like a patient who had a fatal illness and already knew the ending, therefore had no will to live. If there was any hope, it would be when death would be near.

    The trade caravan moved very slowly, night after day. The slaves would occasionally be released to excrete their body. Gu Shenwei was like a walking dead, nonresistant, didn’t even try to escape; he had completely lost his confidence. Even God’s will had abandoned him, not even giving him a tiny hint.

    The environment of the trade caravan became increasingly cheerful as Jade City was just ahead. What was waiting for them would be wealthy buyers, flowing wine and the ecstasy of the gentle town. Most importantly, the trade caravan had already crossed into the Golden Roc Castle’s territory, and it would not come across any danger.

    The last thought had been shattered at noon of the third day. At that time, there was only one more day left of the journey to reach Jade City. The journey had become smoother, there were abundant green plants and there were lively villages ahead, in addition the villages were not type of places where robbers would show up.

    At that moment, a group of robbers stood in front of the trade caravan. The people at the back couldn’t see the situation, but the bad news was passed on one by one.

    “Some robbers are blocking the way.”

    “How come there are robbers here?”

    "Where is the killer from the Golden Roc Castle? Isn’t he leading the way?”

    “Don’t be afraid. We have more people and the robbers only have several tens of men.”

    “Big Head God? It’s the Big Head God, oh my god.”

    Gu Shenwei had some impressions about the Big Head God. This guy had always incurred some frightening stories. Those stories were unusual so Gu Shenwei had always taken him to be one of the characters in a myth but he hadn’t expected that he was real.

    “We are doomed, Big Head God likes eating kids the most, no matter you wash your ass clean or not, he will still eat you.”

    The triangle-faced teenager’s face was ghastly pale. He said the same words in four or five different languages. His expression was not as frivolous as usual, and his voice was also trembling, making his words seem more true.

    The story of Iron Mountain Big Head God was heard by all the children in the Western Regions. Once reminded, they all started panicking. Some of the timid kids curled in the haystack, trembling, not daring to raise their heads.

    At first, it was not the Big Head God himself that negotiated with the trade caravan. When the whole trade caravan was still on tenterhooks, a big scary voice said,

    “You don’t have to be scared, I’m a friend of the Unique King, I will not do business on his territory. I’m here to buy something, not rob.”

    The Big Head God from the Iron Mountain was surprisingly going to ‘buy’ something. The merchants were even more frightened. Nobody dared to respond, fearing that this was the code word of the robbers. What if they cheerfully approached close to the robbers, but what waited for them was a sabre cut?

    It was only when the Big Head God’s men threw two bags of gleaming silver on the ground, did the leader of the trade caravan ventured to ask,

    “May I ask my lord, what would you like to buy? We have……”

    “Buy people.”

    With this statement, the people from the trade caravan all retreated three steps, huddling together. They were all puzzled, who exactly dared to offend this big malicious star, to even make the Big Head God buy him?

    It was unexpected that the Big Head God really bought some slaves normally. A skinny middle-aged women came out of the robbers’ group and led a small team to check every cage that held slaves.The one that got pointed at would be pulled out.

    The merchant’s hanging heart finally calmed down, but those slaves who heard the news were freaked out. The triangle-faced teenager was stupefied at first, then his hands were fumbling in the haystack. He grasped ashes with both hands and started smearing it on his face.

    His move awakened everybody. Even Gu Shenwei who had lost his heart joined the group to grasp the ashes, trying his best to make him look ugly and unattractive.

    However, the skinny woman seemed to have a special ability. She could find their true look no matter how thick the ashes were. In this cage, her eyes swept across and picked two kids.

    Gu Shenwei steeled his heart and jumped out by himself. The triangle-faced teenager was paralyzed in the corner, still holding onto hope. The result was that he was pulled out roughly by one of the robbers.

    The skinny woman picked very fast. In the end, she picked a total of ten boys and ten girls, all around the ages of more than ten years-old. The two teenagers who were chased by the swordsman Long Feidu from Big Snow Mountain were also selected.

    “Virgin boys’ and girls’ flesh are most fresh, now we really are going to wash our ass and be eaten.”

    The triangle-faced teenager only said this in the language of the Central Plains. With a sad face, he followed behind Gu Shenwei and walked towards the new owner.

    The Big Head God was at the forefront of the trade caravan. Gu Shenwei only heard his voice, but hadn’t seen him. Now, he boldly looked up and glanced at him. Although he had already prepared, he was still shocked, thinking how was it possible to have such a scary person in the world.

    Big Head God was on a black horse. His exposed upper body was almost as tall as a normal person. He deserved his name; he had a giant head with loose hair, which made his head look even more bigger. It was like a large, ancient tripod carved with taotie. [1. Translator’s note: Taotie is a mythical ferocious beast which enjoys eating and drinking in large amounts.]
    His eyes, nose, and mouth were big, as if a statue of Buddha had stepped out of the temple.  

    His naked upper body had tight muscles, shining in the sunshine.

    His black horse was also extraordinary. It was a full circle larger than an ordinary horse and had dense teeth and fierce eyes. It was more like a beast that ate meat.

    Gu Shenwei somehow began to believe the legend of the Big Head God. The triangle-faced teenager behind him staggered, almost falling onto him.

    Big Head God’s band had plenty of horses, someone immediately brought out more than 10 horses. The newly bought virgin boys and girls either rode solo or rode double. All of them were forced to ride on horses.

    The triangle-faced teenager followed Gu Shenwei and climbed on the same horse and held Gu Shenwei’s waist from behind. No matter how hard Gu Shenwei tried to shake him off, he wouldn’t let it go.

    The robbers from Iron Mountain bought the people, then turned around to rush towards the east. The silver left on the ground was more than ten thousand, enough to buy another dozen slaves, but the merchants had still not recovered from the shock, even though Big Head God had already left, no one dared to touch the silver.

  • edited February 2017
    Editors: Lygnaw, Savage Bunny, Moonclipse

    Volume 1 - Chapter 8  Robbers' Camp

    The 20 virgin boys and girls who had been pressured by 50 to 60 robbers rode at full speed, arriving at the robbers’ camp that same night.

    The bandits of Iron Mountain’s camp was surprisingly built outside a big city, and not hidden deep within the forests of the mountain. Thousands of people were inside, with various weapons placed everywhere and flags flying. If seen from afar, it was more like an army which was ready to attack a city.

    “We must have arrived outside of Jade City.”

    The triangle-faced teenager dismounted the horse as he speculated while trembling; one hand was still holding the tail of Gu Shenwei’s clothing tightly.

    His guess was right. The structure of Iron Mountain gangsters was complex and had various languages being spoken, but the words “Jade City” were said repeatedly. Everyone who mentioned this city looked happy, patting each other with a tacit approval.

    Gu Shenwei was very confused. He recalled that in the legends, Big Head God of Iron Mountain had always appeared in the desert. Surprisingly, he had moved outside of Jade City, and it hadn’t looked like he had any intentions to rob.

    The teenagers were driven forward. The camp was mostly filled with men. They were also curious about the teenagers, pointing at them and bursting into coarse laughter when they passed by, which only terrified the little slaves even more.

    The tents of the camp were densely set up. The biggest one in the center was obviously Big Head God’s main tent.

    Big Head God walked directly into the tent. The ten pairs of virgin boys and girls were also brought inside.

    The tent was large enough to accommodate hundreds of people. The floor was covered with a thick carpet. The newly bought little slaves were all frightened, standing near the door and waiting for their unknown fate.

    A dozen sub-chiefs followed their chief and entered. Big Head God hadn’t sat down. He waved his big hand and ordered loudly,

    “Bring the meat.”

    The little slaves were startled. Two girls fainted directly, while another two boys cried out of fear. The triangle-faced teenager’s body softened, leaning on Gu Shenwei’s back. He started talking to himself with a sobbing tone;

    “I only said it casually for fun, they wouldn’t really eat people, right?”

    A group of underlings poured in, bringing rich wine and meat. Even the little slaves huddling in the corner were served with food.

    The wine and meat was casually piled on the carpet. Everyone sat on the floor and paid no attention to etiquette as they ate and drunk with a big mouth.

    The smallest piece of the meat would be more than 2 or 3 kilograms, boiled half cooked and with blood trickling after a bite.

    “What, what kind of meat is this?”

    The triangle-faced teenager asked in a low voice. The kids who had wanted to grab and eat the meat put it back after hearing his words.

    Gu Shenwei hadn’t eaten anything for the past few days and was already ‘burning’ with the fire of hunger. He didn’t put the triangle-faced teenager’s words in his mind and grabbed a piece of meat, taking a huge bite. Although the meat was hard and smelled of mutton, it was good for a hungry person; it also didn’t taste like the legendary human meat.

    Once somebody started, the others all followed. However, they were all confused. Big Head God had bought 20 kids, and it couldn’t just be to invite them to eat meat, right?

    Looking at the people in the tent again, not to mention Big Head God, the sub-chiefs also looked ferocious. Even the most normal-looking one had an arm filled with scars and tattoos. Some people drank so much that they even stripped naked.

    This was a group of men who were full of energy. No matter how much wine and meat they consumed, nothing came out, so they could only fight to vent their energy. Not even quarter of an hour after the meal had started, there had already been four or five fights. The onlookers did not discourage them, but cheered loudly with the help of wine. Wine cups were also thrown everywhere.

    After eating half a piece of meat, Gu Shenwei was already full. While he was observing these gangsters, especially the tall and mighty Big Head God, he suddenly had an idea pop into his mind; It would be very good if I could get help from Iron Mountain.

    But the two villains Unique King and Big Head God were friends, so Gu Shenwei could only randomly think about it.

    The meal was already halfway finished, but the mood of the crowd became more feverish instead of calming down. The crowd began to toast Big Head God, who accepted them all. The large bowl of wine in ordinary people’s hands was actually a small cup in his hand.

    One of the drunk sub-chiefs got up, staggering when he stood. With a voice louder than all the others, he said,

    “In a few days, our Miss of Iron Mountain will be wedded, and with the ten pairs of virgin boys and girls, the dowry is almost ready. I wish for Miss to have a baby early, and also wish for Big Head God to have a grandson soon!”

    The Iron Mountain gang didn’t care about etiquette, even calling the chief’s nickname directly. Big Head God didn’t mind. He raised his head and drank the bowl of wine, obviously very satisfied with the wishes.

    The little slaves all sighed with relief. So they were to be the dowry of the Miss, and not stay with Big Head God in the future.

    The triangle-faced teenager relaxed, then spoke nervously in a low voice,

    “The Miss’s family-in-law would not also be robbers, right?”

    No one answered his question, and no one cared, because that sub-chief proudly said one more sentence.

    “Big Head God, everyone in the world knows that our Miss is famous for her beauty. Now she’s getting married, shouldn’t it be the time for us uncles and brothers, to have a look at her?”

    This proposal was agreed by many people, but the echo quickly ceased, because everyone could see that Big Head God’s expression had changed.

    “You want to see my daughter?”

    “No, no,” the sub-chief immediately realized that he had said something wrong. His face became blue, the bowl in his hands falling down to the floor. “I don’t, I, I……”

    The Big Head God stood up with a boom and grabbed an iron spear nearby.

    The iron spear was thick and long. If Yang Zheng’s long spear was compared with it, then Yang Zheng’s spear would seem like a children’s toy.

    The sub-chief knew that he had made a terrible mistake and retreated in a panic. His face tried to make a slight smile, but instead it became more stiff and distorted.

    Big Head God shouted like thunder striking in the clear sky, then jumped. Considering his gigantic frightening body, his movement was surprisingly swift. He jumped over a dozen of people and speared through the sub-chief’s chest as he landed.

    Big Head God hung the dying sub-chief up in the air. The sub-chief’s hands held the shaft, looking at the chief in astonishment. He used up his last strength and said, “Forgive……forgive me.”

    “Big Head God’s daughter, except for my son-in-law, not a single man in the world can see her face. My son-in-law is the son of the Unique King, not a bastard like you.”

    The Big Head God and the Unique King were relatives by marriage!

    Gu Shenwei’s heart suddenly sank. There was not the slightest chance that Big Head God would help him with his revenge.

    However, his heart then filled with joy. He was going to follow Big Head God’s daughter and enter Golden Roc Castle. God’s will had appeared again after abandoning him for a few days.

    Gu Shenwei’s mind suddenly settled down, a clear path was shown in front of him: Sneak into Golden Roc Castle, look for the whereabouts of my sister, assassinate at least one of the enemies.

    The sub-chief’s death didn’t disturb the atmosphere of the banquet. The dead body was quickly carried out and the people continued to eat and drink.

    After the banquet, the ten girls were sent to the Miss’s tent to listen to her orders. The boys were sent to a small tent nearby. Their daily work was to endlessly scrub the utensils and organising the dowry.

    When his elder sister Gu Tsuilan had been getting ready for her marriage, Gu Shenwei had still been a young lord who lived a worry-free life. He had talked more and did less, but now he had to work for the robber’s daughter whom he had never seen before. His heart felt as if it was being cut by a sabre.

    The skinny woman who had picked the slaves for Big Head God was the Miss’s close servant. The teenager servants were also now under her control.

    The skinny woman ordered them to call her ‘Xue Niang’. These were the first two words the barbarian teenagers learnt about in the language of the Central Plains.

    Xue Niang’s appearance was nothing like Xue (snow). Her face was pale, her cheeks were sallow, and her body like bamboo. She knew that most of these teenagers could not speak the language of the Central Plains, so she usually didn’t say much and always pointed her finger if she had some orders.

    Her fingers were long and solid, like ten thin iron needles. If you didn’t understand her meaning immediately, you would be poked by the thin iron needles, which would leave a bruise lasting two or three days.

    The ten teenagers had all poked by the fingers many times, even the triangle-faced teenager who claimed to be the most obedient. Every time he saw Xue Niang come in, the triangle-faced teenager would immediately take over his original job and work with passion.

    Gu Shenwei’s chest had been attacked several times by the iron finger poke, his minimal internal power offering not even the slightest protection. From this, he thought Xue Niang’s kung fu must be very good.

    The Big Head God would often lead the robbers out of the camp. Sometimes they would come back with nothing, sometimes they would bring back many goods. It was difficult to say which ‘business’ they were doing.

    The exact date of the marriage had not been set. The only words known was ‘soon’, and there was also a rumor saying that new problems might unexpectedly pop up.

    Gu Shenwei felt that every day in the camp was like a year.

    The triangle-faced teenager had brought back the rumor. He didn’t forget to remind the audiences, “If the Miss can’t get married, we will follow her and suffer. This is a robbers’ gang. Although it is camped here today, nobody knows if we will move tomorrow. At that time, will Big Head God take a group of kids with him? Have you seen any other kids in the camp except us? I think, the Big Head God will not sell us, he will pierce through all of us to make a string, like this.”

    The triangle-faced teenager imitated Big Head God’s manner of stabbing a person with a spear. Three kids were so scared that they dropped the bronze they were holding onto the floor.

    On the fifth day after they went into the camp, Big Head God led his men out of the camp again, not returning at night.

    Gu Shenwei laid on the straw mattress after a long day of tiring work, but he couldn’t fall asleep.

    He had gotten used to the soft mattress. For him, the straw mattress was no different from the solid floor. Furthermore, ten people sharing one tent made him very uncomfortable. Previously, only the little bookkeeper Ming Xiang had slept in the same room as him, and Ming Xiang never snored, not to mention frequently grinding his teeth or turning over.

    Gu Shenwei had already accepted the fact that he had lost his family. His mind for revenge was increasingly firm, but he still couldn’t get used to some details in life.

    Someone was moving inside the tent. The roof of the tent had a gap. A ray of moonlight shined through, and Gu Shenwei saw two teenagers creeping to the door.

    It was the same two teenagers who had been targeted by the swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain.

    Gu Shenwei had once impulsively stood up and spoke up for them, but they seemed to not appreciate it in the least. Of course, they couldn’t speak the language of the Central Plains, but they also had never showed any meanings of gratitude.

    Gu Shenwei didn’t mind. He himself had too many other things to worry about.

    The two teenagers were alike, obviously they were brothers. They scanned their surroundings while they walked. Soon, the elder brother’s eyes made contact with Gu Shenwei’s.

    It was only just now that Gu Shenwei suddenly understood. The two brothers were going to escape.

    The elder brother paused for a while. He then pointed outside and made several easy gestures. His eyes were even darker than the night, shimmering like a watchful cat.

    The other kids were still sleeping soundly. Gu Shenwei pushed up his body, staring at the two pairs of eyes. He understood their meaning; the brothers were inviting him to escape with them.

    This seemed to be a good chance for escaping. Big Head God had taken many of his men away, and the rest were servants who didn’t know kung fu. The robbers didn’t arrange special guards for these ten teenagers, and Jade City was only several miles away from the camp. It was a good place to avoid being hunted.

    Gu Shenwei slowly shook his head, but he softly waved his hands and wished them all the best.

    He could not waste this golden opportunity to enter Golden Roc Castle. Unless he followed the young mistress, approaching Golden Roc Castle was like ascending to heaven for a normal teenager with minimal kung fu skills like him.

    There had the whereabouts of his elder sister, and there existed the enemy.

    The other teenager was a little surprised, but didn’t continue to persuade him. He also waved his hand, turned and pulled his brother’s hand, then carefully walked outside of the tent.

    Gu Shenwei lay down again. These two brothers must have the same unusual experience as him, but they couldn’t communicate.

    “Someone is running away! Someone stop them!”

    The two brothers had just walked to the corner of the tent when the triangle-faced boy’s voice suddenly rang. No one knew when he had woken up.

    The brothers were taken aback. They were slightly hesitant, but then turned back at the same time, rushing to the triangle-faced teenager who slept closest to the center.

    But the two of them had only just taken a step before they were both lifted up by a hand.

    It was Xue Niang. She wore white clothes that were as bright as daytime. She was incredibly quick, as if she had been waiting outside the tent.

  • edited February 2017

    Editors:  Lygnaw, Moonclipse

    Volume 1 - Chapter 9  Sworn Brothers

    “The two of them want to escape, I saw them. Him as well, he also wants to escape.”

    The triangle-faced teenager pointed at Gu Shenwei.

    The other robbers who had heard the shout rushed in, holding their torches, but when they saw that Xue Niang had already gotten everything under control, they didn’t intervene.

    Gu Shenwei had secretly decided to get revenge through unscrupulous means, but right now he even didn’t know how to be ‘unscrupulous’.

    Therefore, when he faced with the triangle-faced teenager’s false accusation, he hesitated for a while, but didn’t refute to show that he didn’t want to betray the brothers.

    Xue Niang snorted, not asking any questions. She threw the brothers up in the air and pressed her palms against their backs simultaneously. The two teenagers did not utter a sound. They fell back down onto the straw mattress; it was unknown if they were alive or dead.

    The triangle-faced teenager’s eyes were shining. Watching others get punished, even if it was not through his own hands, still made him excited.

    Xue Niang walked in front of Gu Shenwei. Without saying anything, her two fingers stabbed at Gu Shenwei’s left and right shoulders as fast as lightning.

    Gu Shenwei was originally sitting on the straw mattress, but now he fell onto his back as he felt pain penetrate into his bone. He lost control of both his arms and his forehead broke out into large droplets of sweat, He shouted aloud in pain, before forcefully holding it back.

    The triangle-faced teenager’s cheeks were red from excitement. He almost shouted ‘good’.

    Xue Niang then walked to the triangle-faced teenager. The teenager knelt expectantly on the straw mattress and eagerly said,

    “Xue Niang, you can rest assured, I……”

    Xue Niang raised her arm and slapped his face. The strength of her slap was so powerful that the triangle-faced teenager somersaulted and fell heavily onto the ground, motionless. Nobody knew if he was alive or dead.

    “Snitching little bastard.”

    After dropping this sentence, Xue Niang walked away. Although she hated the whistleblower, she still arranged for a robber to guard the tent.

    Both the brothers and the triangle-faced teenager were not dead. They woke up early the following morning. Although Gu Shenwei’s shoulder was still hurting, it didn’t affect his movement.

    The other teenagers avoided interacting, or even looking, at the four of them. They didn’t know what had happened; they just wanted to stay out of it.

    The triangle-faced teenager’s cheek had a clear imprint left on it. He covered his face with hands, looking very puzzled. After seeing the brothers and Gu Shenwei walking to him, he immediately rolled out of the bed and sat up.

    “Ai, what I did was for your own good. You can’t run away successfully, you would’ve gotten caught and be killed.”

    “I had no choice. We are servants bought by others, being loyal to the lord is our responsibility. Likewise, you can also go and snitch on me.”

    The brothers said something in their own language. The teenager’s triangle face alternated between blue and white, then said something back. Just then, Xue Niang came back again.

    They had all learnt the skinny woman’s fierceness and no one dared to be presumptuous in front of her, so they all went back to their own places.

    Throughout the morning, the 10 teenagers were cleaning the large and small incense burners outside the tent. Towards noon, though, something had happened that almost made Gu Shenwei forget his resentment towards the triangle-faced teenager.

    It was not known when the Big Head God had came back. He strode into his daughter’s tent, his face livid. This look of his only appeared when he had to kill somebody.

    The ban forbidding men from seeing his daughter naturally didn’t include him.

    Everyone felt a dangerous tension in the air. They wiped the bronze harder while perking up their ears to listen. It was on this day, the sixth day after becoming a part of the dowry, that the teenagers were able to hear the voice of the Miss for the first time.

    “No, I will not marry him!”

    Her voice was crisp, like the first drink of ice water in the blistering hot summer. Unlike her rough father, her tone was firm and tough. This was a tone others didn’t dare to have in front of the Big Head God.

    Big Head God’s voice lowered. Instead, it seemed as though he was trying his best to persuade her, but he only received an angrier statement from his daughter.

    “I will not marry a cripple, Dad, cancel the marriage.”

    Big Head God’s reply almost couldn’t be heard. The Miss then said something unrecognisable. Then a sound like the roar of a beast came from the tent, the bandit with an exceptionally huge body finally broke out, revealing his nature.

    “If you agree, you have to marry; even if you don’t want to marry, you still have to marry. Even if you are dead, you still have to marry him, fuck!”

    What answered the father’s threat was the Miss’s unwilling cry.

    Big Head God bent his body to walk out of the tent. He stood in the doorway, roared again at the sky, then walked to the main tent. Each footstep seemed to make a hole in the ground. Along the way, everybody, no matter if it were the sub-chiefs or underlings or servants, all hid far away. No one had the courage to persuade him.

    Big Head God gripped his iron spear, wanting to find somebody to vent his anger. There wasn’t a single figure before his eyes however, so he held the spear in front of his chest, and shouted angrily,

    “Shangguan Fa, fuck your grandmother, if kill the wrong person, then just go to kill again, why the hell did you cut my son-in-law’s hand? I, I……”

    Even as a well-known bandit gang leader of the Western Regions, he could only say verbal threats to the Unique King, he actually had no choice.

    “Who is Gu Shenwei? Find that little devil, let me pierce one hundred holes in him!”

    Big Head God’s eyes were so red that they seemed like they were bleeding.

    Gu Shenwei suddenly heard his own name. Surprised and frightened, a bundle of hot Qi went straight up to his head. He almost fainted. All of a sudden, he knew who his enemy was.

    Soaring Eagle was right, it was the Golden Roc Castle that had slaughtered the Gu family. Furthermore, the one who had made the move was Big Head God’s future son-in-law!

    Heaven had eyes. God’s will had protected him and let him be bought by Big Head God. He would follow his enemy‘s fiancee to approach his enemy’s side.

    Ultimately, Big Head God didn’t find the opportunity to kill and vent his anger. The father and daughter’s anger, however, filled the whole camp, making everyone feel insecure. The first unlucky person was a bought virgin girl.

    Big Head God’s surname was Luo, so naturally, the Miss was also surnamed Luo. She had a strange name; her name was Ningcha. Although Big Head God forbade other men to look at his daughter, her name was not a taboo, so the robbers would always talk about her using her name, and Big Head God wouldn’t care.

    But, Miss Luo Ningcha herself did mind, especially when she was angry.

    It was over this issue that the virgin girl caused trouble. She was from the mountains and spoke a dialect nobody could understand. She made efforts to adapt to her new environment, earnestly learning the common language. One of the earliest words she learnt was ‘Ningcha’. Unfortunately, she had not understood the meaning of this word, and hadn’t known that this was the Miss’s first name.

    The second day after the father and daughter’s quarrel, the virgin girl was repeatedly reciting a few words of the Central Plains that she had mastered. After repeating the word Ningcha several times, she sighed for no reason. This however, was heard by the Miss.

    Few people knew what happened next. Gu Shenwei and the other teenagers were working outside the tent when they heard screams in the tent.

    The screams continued without a break. After a while, the punished virgin girl was carried out of the tent. Her face was full of blood, her original appearance almost unrecognisable.

    Her eyes and tongue were gone.

    Gu Shenwei didn’t know what the others were thinking, but he was very angry. This Miss Luo Ningcha was so cruel, she was no different from her ruthless father.

    But his anger was just anger. Even if he didn’t need to take revenge for his family, even if he was still the young lord of the Gu family, Gu Shenwei would not have the courage to fight for the virgin girl.

    The virgin girl was not dead. After two days, she returned to the Miss’s tent. Although she couldn’t speak and her eyes couldn’t see, she still had to serve the brutal hostess by using her ears to listen.

    As for why Luo Ningcha still kept this little maidservant, perhaps only she herself knew the reason.

    Every time he saw the blind, mute virgin girl groping in and out of the tent, Gu Shenwei would feel a chill from his heart spread to every root of his hair, both with sympathy and fear. He believed that other teenagers had similar emotions.

    Perhaps because the virgin girl’s tragic experience reminded the children the necessity of being united, On the third day after the incident, the triangle-faced teenager surprisingly took the initiative to show goodwill. He wanted to reconcile Gu Shenwei and the brothers who wanted to escape.

    “I came to apologize. I hope you can forgive my actions on that night. We live in the same tent, eat the same food, serve the same lord, and should help each other, like real brothers.”

    While he was speaking, the triangle-faced teenager touched the palmprint that had not disappeared, his expression genuine. He had this ability of being able to change his expression at anytime, so fast that others thought they were two people.

    He apologized with two different languages. Gu Shenwei and the brothers glanced at each other, then nodded together, showing that they forgave the triangle-faced teenager’s betrayal.

    They all had more important secrets in mind and didn’t care about the triangle-faced teenager’s trick.

    The triangle-faced teenager’s trick, however, was not just for reconciliation. Later that day, when the ten boys all went to the tent to take a rest, he coughed and spoke in a very formal way.

    He first spoke in two barbarian languages, then finally spoke in the language of the Central Plains:

    “Since we all agree, we officially swear to be brothers with different surnames. We will share the happiness and hardships together from now on.”

    He glanced at everyone with a contemptuous look. Seeing no objection, then continued to speak in three languages.

    “I, Lin Yang, will treat the people in this tent as real brothers from now on. I will not let the others be hungry if I have something to eat, I will not let the others feel cold if I have something to wear. If I’m rich, I will definitely let my brothers also be rich and succeed.”

    No one had any objections, not because they really had brotherly feelings, but due to the mutual language barrier. They didn’t know the other people’s ideas, and did not dare to be the first one. Not to mention that this was Iron Mountain Big Head God’s camp. The father and daughter were on edge, and they could find an excuse to kill at anytime, so no one wanted to dispute right now.

    The tent was in silence for a while. One teenager spoke in his native language, stammering something. He had probably stammered the meaning of an oath, because the triangle-faced teenager Lin Yang looked very satisfied.

    One by one, each teenagers swore the oath. Some reluctantly, some passionately, and even the two brothers who were betrayed made an oath, though their words were short and without much sincerity.

    The eight teenagers all spoke the barbarian language of the Western Regions. Gu Shenwei couldn’t even understand a word, let alone their names. Finally it was his turn. He hesitated for a while, before saying coldly,

    “I, Yang Huan, will be sworn brothers with all of you. If someone is stabbed in the back, he will be damned by the heaven and destroyed by the earth.”

    This was not a sincere oath as Gu Shenwei had not even used his true name.

    If it was several days earlier, the young lord of Gu family might have eagerly joined the oath ceremony, taken all the others’ words as truth. Now, he swore with lies, and he was very clear that none of the ten people’s oaths had a true word.

    Lin Yang also knew it, but he was still satisfied. He couldn’t step too fast; he had to move step by step. Once they entered Golden Roc Castle, he would slowly grab this small group firmly in the hands. The Miss would be the owner in name, but he wanted to be the real leader.

    The fifth day after the ten teenagers sworn to be brothers, Miss Luo Ningcha wasn’t able to change her father’s will and dressed up. She was ready to travel to Golden Roc Castle to get married. Gu Shewei also met the Gu family’s enemy, Shangguan Nu, for the first time.

  • edited February 2017

    Editors: Lygnaw, Moonclipse

    Chapter 10  Bridegroom

    Although everyone had only half-heartedly sworn to be brothers, the 10 teenagers became closer after that night, as if they really had found some sense of belonging.

    Gu Shenwei also thought that the idea of being sworn brothers was not bad. He didn’t have anyone to rely on at the moment, and he also had no martial arts manuals. To obtain his revenge through open means was impossible, so he could only use underhanded means. Having a group of brothers, ultimately, was not a bad thing.

    Of course, he would not tell his secrets to the others. In this small group of hidden schemes and exploits, one should never tell the truth.

    The following days were the honeymoon period for the 10 sworn brothers. They helped each other, learnt to speak each other’s language, and sometimes even made little jokes. No one could foresee the future life after going to Golden Roc Castle .

    On the morning of the Miss’s wedding day, the whole camp was arranged to look brand-new. From Big Head God to the lowest level minions, they were all dressed up nicely for the first time and reminding themselves not to exhibit bandit-like behavior.

    Nearly a thousand gangsters, regardless of their rank, crowded on either side of the road, wanting to see what the bridegroom looked like. He was the son of the Unique King, who had always kept a low-profile. Even for the biggest gang of robbers in the Western Regions, it was rare to see his appearance.

    Gu Shenwei in particular wanted to have a look at him.

    The fact that Golden Roc Castle had exterminated the Gu family from Central Plains had been spread; the Shangguan family deliberately did not conceal this. The details of what had happened, the before, the after, they were all gradually revealed to the teenager.

    This business——the Iron Mountain robbers’ gang called killing ‘business’——had been led by Shangguan Nu, the eighth son of the Unique King. The power he possessed comprised of 20 killers and 70 sabremen. It was also said that he also had a ‘green faced’ assassin.

    The sabremen, killer, and assassin were members of different levels in Golden Roc Castle; a sabreman was at an elementary level. They were usually hired from different places of the Western Regions. A killer was a person trained by the Golden Roc Castle itself; their martial arts skills would be significantly higher than the sabremen, and therefore they were considered as the key of the Golden Roc Castle. The assassin was one of the most mysterious group of people, their existence itself controversial. A legendary assassin had the highest martial arts skill. Their identities were hidden, they often wore a black mask, and were called ‘green faced’.

    20 killers and 70 sabremen were a force to be reckoned with. Some people even thought that this was using a hammer to crack nuts.

    In accordance with the rules of Golden Roc Castle, the sabremen was in charge of reconnaissance and other matters. They only killed when necessary. Only killers took the most important assassination task.

    It was these sabremen who had peeked at the manor from the mountain back and broken into the manor to find the actual situation and escaped, and it was them who were killed by old servant Yang Zheng in the end.

    20 killers, and perhaps the young lord Shangguan Nu and the mysterious ‘green faced’, had sneaked into the Gu family manor after everything had been prepared. They had killed the patrolling guardsmen quietly, then the lords of the manor, before finally killing the servants who were still soundly asleep.

    The entire operation had been planned out very well, so its execution had been exceedingly smooth, and weren’t faced with any resistance. Following the rules of Golden Roc Castle, fighting the enemy face-to-face was the last resort. It was best if the assassination was carried out with no resistance.

    Sweep away the gold, silver and other treasures then burn it down with fire, this was the standard procedure of Golden Roc Castle. For those objects that were not easy to move, they were all left to the bandits who had a sensitive smell.

    If everything had gone smoothly, this would have brought a prosperous future to the eighth young lord Shangguan Nu.

    That was the first time he had carried out a task by himself. He would have been eligible to stand on his own after being successful and cultivate his own strength. He would also marry the daughter of Big Head God, the leader of the largest robbers’ gang in the Western Regions, a rare strength that could be used to consolidate his family’s forces and his own status.

    And all because of the disappearance of a 14-year-old teenager, these became nothing more than an illusion.

    There were various opinions about how the teenager named Gu Shenwei escaped. It seemed that Gu Lun, the lord of the manor, had been a sly old fish. He had sent a series of troops out that night, scattering the attention of the sabremen outside and hence helping his daughter and youngest son escape.

    Shangguan Nu had made a poor judgment at that time. He had only sent the sabremen to chase, with the result of the three sabremen who left not returning. After the extermination of the Gu family, it was found that two young lords had been missing. Shangguan Nu had sent the killer in time, and the killer had brought back the head he had wanted.

    But it was the wrong head.

    The head that was thought to be the young lord of the Gu family actually belonged to somebody unknown.

    Because of this unforgivable fault, the Unique King had amputated his eighth son’s hand, and Shangguan Nu had chopped off several sabremen and killers’ hands.

    Shangguan Nu’s good future had ended just before it had started. Although the Unique King hadn’t declared anything, and maybe would not even declare it in the future, everyone was sure that Shangguan Nu would not be able to stand on his own for a long time. The marriage with Big Head God’s daughter, however, was not cancelled; instead, it became a pure family marriage as the Unique King and Big Head God needed such a marriage. Furthermore, the two of them temporarily had no other children at the right age.

    What made Gu Shenwei disappointed was that the rumors rarely mentioned the outcome of the Gu family’s Miss Gu Tsuilan. People either took it for granted that she was dead, or she was not mentioned at all.

    As for the true cause of the extermination of the Gu family by Golden Roc Castle, there were many rumours, each indistinguishable from the truth or lies, reasons included for money, for treasures, for hatred, for resentment, for others’ revenge, and so on. Anyway, this was not the first time the Golden Roc Castle had exterminated a family, and could even be regarded as an ordinary action by Golden Roc Castle. If not because it was related to the leader’s daughter, the robbers’ gang of the Iron Mountain would not even have an interest in it.

    The most incredible part of the whole story was the final outcome. It was said that the Unique King issued a ruthless order, requiring Shangguan Nu to bring back the correct head within seven days.

    Shanguan Nu had made it. In relation to this point, all the people casually mentioned, a 14-year-old child, how far could he run in the desert of the Western Regions? There was no doubt that he would be caught under the hunt of the Golden Roc Castle.

    Only Gu Shenwei himself was sure that he was not dead.

    As for how he unexpectedly lived to the present, he could only guess a general outline; first, it was Yang Zheng’s strategy. He let the small bookkeeper Ming Xiang pose as the young master, and also found another child to pose as the bookkeeper. Only this was not enough, there were a series of contingencies after that; Gu Shenwei had gone the wrong way, he had travelled back to the manor and been captured by a robber who didn’t know him. Later, the robber had died under the swordsman from the Big Snow Mountain, and Big Head God had accidentally bought him among those many slaves.

    These accidents made it impossible for Shangguan Nu to find any clues of the whereabouts of the missing person in time, so he was forced to use someone else’s head instead.

    Shangguan Nu had brought back the wrong head to Golden Roc Castle, but why had nobody pointed it out this time?

    Gu Shenwei racked his brains, but still couldn’t figure it out.

    The escort group from Golden Roc Castle arrived.

    Dozens of riders were dressed up brightly as they walked in two rows in the front. Although their numbers were small, they all looked dignified. The horses were all red and well-trained, moving in concert. The momentum had already overwhelmed the scattered crowd of onlookers that were the robbers’ gang.

    Behind them was a sedan chair lifted by eight people. Riding alongside the sedan was the bridegroom, Shangguan Nu.

    Shanguan Nu was indeed dressed as a standard bridegroom, but his face did not have the happy smile of a bridegroom. It was still the same as usual, ruthless. He turned a blind eye to the gestures and praises of the thousands of people.

    He was like a newly-appointed general who was inspecting his useless army.

    A sabre was still hanging by his waist, the black sheath exceptionally garish and unfitting with the whole escort group.

    It was known that men from the Shangguan family would not take their sabre away from their body until they died. The crowd passed along these words; they all understood and forgave the bridegroom’s rude behavior.

    Actually, the people were more curious about the bridegroom’s right hand, the hand that was chopped off by the Unique King.

    Without a hand to carry the sabre, even for a man of the Shangguan family, it was like a tiger without teeth.

    Shangguan Nu’s right arm was completely hidden inside his long sleeves. The reins were also inside the sleeves and held by something unknown. It looked no different from normal people.

    Even a person who knew nothing about politeness would not deliberately stare at the disability of others, but unfortunately, in the robbers’ camp of the Iron Mountain, courtesy was rarer than kindness. Thousands of eyes were all staring at that hidden crippled hand after they had glanced at the escort team and the bridegroom.

    Shangguan Nu’s face became colder and stiffer, as if he was part of the Iron Mountain.

    Big Head God had seen Shangguan Nu from far away. The smile on his face grew bigger and bigger, the dark clouds hovering in his heart swept away. The one coming in from the opposite direction was a real son of the Unique King, and now in this way, who could find out that he was crippled slightly? The young man was worthy of his own daughter, and he opened his arms widely, waiting to meet his son-in-law.

    Gu Shenwei saw his enemy too. The 10 pairs of virgin boys and girls, together with a group of sub-chiefs were standing behind Big Head God, could all clearly see as the bridegroom dismounted and kneeled down to meet his father-in-law. They even saw a length of hook exposed from the cuffs when Big Head God lifted his son-in-law up and gave him a warm embrace.

    The hook flashed.

    Gu Shenwei found that he was surprisingly very calm and didn’t have the expected nervousness.

    This was the enemy of the Gu family. It may even had been this young man who had personally killed his parents with his own hands and cut off their heads.

    Gu Shenwei was holding a red gift box and only a few steps away from Shanguan Nu. Suddenly, from within his heart emerged the impulse to move forward. His body involuntarily leaned forward.

    A stern look was shot at him.

    Xue Niang was looking at him, her eyes warning him not to make a fool of himself in front of the groom.

    Gu Shenwei suddenly woke up, and immediately resumed standing. His life was saved by his father who did everything possible to help him survive. This was also exchanged with the voluntary sacrifice of his master, Yang Zheng, as well as his elder sister. He should not waste his life so easily.

    He wanted revenge, but his goal for revenge was no longer Shangguan Nu alone. The enmity of extermination must be returned with another extermination.

    He had God’s will, and would definitely succeed.

    The groom Shangguan Nu stood up, his eyes randomly sweeping the people behind his father-in-law. Although Big Head God’s giant body hid a lot of people, he still saw a group of giggling bandits, with vulgar faces. The new clothes could not conceal the dirt on their whole body.

    Shangguan Nu was a little disappointed. Was this the power he had strived for? How did his father take a fancy to such a crowd?

    Gu Shenwei bravely met the sweep of his eyes, but he did not get a shred of concern.

    When he had made the decision to enter the Golden Roc Castle, he had also determined to take a huge risk; someone in the Golden Roc Castle must have already known him, and maybe Shangguan Nu had already inquired about his appearance.

    Just now, Shangguan Nu hadn’t recognize him; he had passed the first hurdle. However, when he arrived at the Castle, how long could he hide?

    Gu Shenwei knew that the duration for revenge left by God’s will was not long, so he had to move as soon as possible.

  • edited February 2017

    Editors: Lygnaw, Moonclipse

    Volume 1 - Chapter 11    Name

    The joint marriage between the largest killer association and the biggest robbers' gang in the Western Regions was destined to cause a sensation in Jade City and spread for a long time.

    Riding a horse together with the escort team, Gu Shenwei was probably the only person who was not interested in the wedding itself. Previously, he had already been to Jade City and this visit was his second time. His mood, however, was already quite different.

    It was two years ago. After travelling hard in the desert for almost a month, Jade City was the first populated city that the Gu family had encountered. Just as the first sip of water for a thirsty person was like nectar, in the travelers' eyes, Jade City was like a paradise on earth.

    Upon entering the city, shops and wineries were lined the place. The people walking on the street came from various places and had different colors. It was the first time that they had seen so many foreigners, and their eyes could not take it all in. They all had impudently stared at the foreigners.

    Lord Gu Lun, however, didn't like this place, so they only stopped for a little while before going to the government office to exchange their passports. Early morning of the next day, they had continued on the westbound road and headed for the manor. The manor in the oasis was several hundreds of miles away and the Gu family had already asked someone to buy it.

    Gu Shenwei and his two elder brothers had all felt regretful about this. Although his eldest brother had seriously chided his second brother for wanting to buy a barbarian female entertainer, he himself had also stared at the belles on the street, almost falling down from his horse.

    His second brother had no small amount of pocket money that had been secretly hidden under the bed. He had intended to come back to Jade City and buy a belle with white skin and big eyes.

    The escort team entered the city from the west gate and grandly marched on the street. The street sides were crowded with onlookers who all bowed to show their respect. Many people even scattered fragrant flowers to the ground. The marriage between killers and robbers received a royal-like courtesy.

    In Jade City, the sabre and the sword are the kings.

    Golden Roc Castle was located on the peak of the mountain outside Jade City. Its only access was a zigzag mountain road that started from the north gate of Jade City. Looking from afar, the castle on the mountain was like an imperial palace, and the city at the foot of the mountain was its first line of defense.

    Houses lined both sides of the mountain road. Although it was not as dense as Jade City, it was not desolate at all. Every household's door and walls had been decorated specially, adding joy to the wedding of Golden Roc Castle. In fact, most of these families had various connections with Golden Roc Castle; they had to rely on the Unique King to make a living.

    As the mountain’s elevation increased, the temperature gradually grew colder. Although it was midsummer, one could still feel a tinge of coolness.

    People approaching Golden Roc Castle for the first time would be astonished. From the foot of the mountain, no one would notice that the castle was actually built on an isolated mountain peak surrounded by a trench. Only a stone bridge approximately one zhang wide connected it to the mountain.

    There was no railing on both sides of the stone beam. If one looked down while walking on the beam, one would see that the trench was shrouded in mist and had no sound at all, making people teeter and not be able to stare for a long time.

    When they rode up to the stone beam, all of them dismounted and walked instead. No one dared to take the risk of having the horses frightened, dragging everyone down and being smashed into pieces.

    Anyone who nervously walked on the narrow stone beam and up to dozens of steps would be awed by the castle in front of them.

    In front of Golden Roc Castle gate was a broad path paved with bluestones. Some of these bluestones were damaged, indicating the long history of the castle.

    The walls were built with huge rocks of differing heights but were well-arranged. Even the lowest wall was about three to four zhangs in height. On the top of the walls were crossbow mounts and watchtowers. Numerous flags went straight up into the clouds.

    Such a castle really expressed the idiom, one man guarded the pass while ten thousand were unable to get through. As long as the inside was fully prepared, no one could break in from the outside.

    Gu Shenwei really began to believe in the existence of God's will; only because of God’s will was he able enter Golden Roc Castle.

    The gate of the castle was wide open. People stood at the entrance, ready to welcome the bride.

    Originally, Gu Shenwei thought he would be able see the legendary Unique King Shangguan Fa, but he was disappointed. Except for Shangguan Nu, he didn't see any men from the Shangguan Family. He did not even get to witness the ceremony where the groom and bride bowed to each other.

    Just like countless other dowries, the 10 pairs of virgin boys and girls became the property of the Shangguan Family and was immediately distributed after they had entered the Golden Roc Castle.

    The virgin girls were to be the young mistress's personal servants, and were sent to the Shangguan Nu’s courtyard. The 10 virgin boys were sent to a small courtyard which had the name ‘Ji Xin Yuan’. This led to Gu Shenwei's speculation that their main work from now on would probably be cutting wood.  

    At this point, for the newly arrived teenagers, the only thing left for the wedding was ethereal music and faint laughter.

    The first night at Golden Roc Castle was quiet and long. Apart from someone bringing them dinner, no one came to ask about these new assets. The 10 teenagers slept in one room on a big, heated brick bed that barely fit all of them.

    The triangle-faced teenager Lin Yang was the earliest one to recover from shock. The handprint on his face had already disappeared, and he his confidence almost restored. It was he who had thought of the idea about being sworn brothers, so he proclaimed himself as ’big brother’.

    "Golden Roc Castle, you know, this is Golden Roc Castle. Even the royal families of the Western Regions have to show their respect to the Shangguan Family. You are lucky; no, I'm lucky, I will definitely be successful. Maybe I can win the Unique King's favor. Gaining favor in Golden Roc Castle means gaining favor in the whole of Jade City. As for you all, follow me honestly and learn some tricks for dealing with people. Maybe then, you can become somebody. What's more, don't blame me for not telling you; Golden Roc Castle will kill at least one person every day, so you'd better be careful."

    Lin Yang liked to scare people and even more, he liked to be touted. Several teenagers with pale faces sucked up to him, begging him to take care of them.

    Lin Yang talked noisily for almost two hours before sleeping quietly with satisfaction. Then, all the other teenagers fell asleep one by one. Gu Shenwei closed his eyes, then opened them. He still couldn't fall asleep, and also couldn't remember when the last time he had a good sleep was.

    He had already entered the Golden Roc Castle. His elder sister might be kept somewhere here. He could even sense her call. Although it was very risky, if he did not go out and explore for awhile, he would feel an unbearable uncomfortableness.  

    Although Lin Yang might jump up and shout again, or the outside may be full of traps, Gu Shenwei didn't care about these. He crawled up quietly and slipped out of the room with his bare feet.

    The yard was very small, with doors on the east and west sides. Outside the eastern door was an alley. It was this route that Gu Shenwei and the others had followed to enter the yard. The alley was long and guarded by guards during daytime. He thought for a while, before finally deciding to go through the west door and check out the situation.   

    The door was unlatched, which was a good sign. The outside was pitch-black, so Gu Shenwei had to let his eyes to adapt for a while before he was able to distinguish his surroundings. The ground was flat, with gravel as far as their eyes could see. Close by, some tall trees could be seen.

    This place did not look like it was part of Golden Roc Castle, and more like the outside of the castle.

    Gu Shenwei was surprised that it was so easy to leave Golden Roc Castle. Carefully, he groped forward for 30 to 40 steps, before his foot accidentally kicked a stone. He heard strange sound so he stopped walking. When he looked down, he was taken aback.

    He had already walked to the edge of a cliff. With one more step, he would have fallen into the abyss. No wonder nobody guarded here; it was not necessary.

    The strange sound had come from below, distant and weak. It was similar to the sound of a stone colliding with a cliff, and was also like a sharp whistle. In this quiet night, it was like a call from hell.

    Gu Shenwei's hairs stood up. He backed away two steps, before turning around and running back to the small courtyard.

    After returning to the yard, Gu Shenwei's mind settled a little. He then walked softly to the east door and pushed a bit, only to find that the door was locked. Retreating several steps to observe where he could jump out, his body suddenly hit something. He looked up to see a man looking down at him.

    The man was dressed in black, his face masked and almost merging with the dark. His right hand was positioned near the left side of his waist. If one looked closely, one would notice that the man’s hand was holding a hilt. He was standing there, as quiet as a ghost.

    Was there someone like him, coming out to investigate Golden Roc Castle?

    Gu Shenwei was pleasantly surprised at first, but the experience on the cliff edge had cleared his mind than usual, so he didn't move and didn't say anything.

    The two of them stared at each other for a while. finally the man dressed in black spoke first.

    "You violated the curfew."

    Gu Shenwei's heart sank. The man in black was not a helper, but a watchman of Golden Roc Castle. Not only was Golden Roc Castle impregnable from outside, but inside was also heavily guarded.

    "I didn't know, I am new here. I, I want to pee."

    "You are from the eighth young mistress's side?"

    Gu Shenwei nodded desperately.

    The man-in-black hesitated, then loosened his grip on his sabre.

    "There is a chamberpot inside the room."

    Gu Shenwei realized that he had just escaped from death. Nodding quickly, he ran to the bedroom and found the chamberpot. But because he was too nervous, he held out for a long time before being able to squeeze out a little. He always felt that the night watchman was still listening outside.

    His heart was still beating quickly after lying down on the brick bed.

    "No more risks." He reminded himself secretly.

    The other teenagers were still snoring and sleeping soundly.

    Gu Shenwei still hadn't thought of how he would get his revenge. The next day after he entered Golden Roc Castle, he found that it was extremely hard to even see with Shangguan Nu.

    Ji Xin Yuan had nothing to do with wood accumulation; it was a place to send off the dead.

    For those who were injured, ill, with low status, or not worthy for a cure, they would all be sent to this small yard to wait for death. In Golden Roc Castle, there were lots of people like this. Just as Lin Yang had said, "there will be dead people every day".

    Big Head God's daughter was enjoying her honeymoon, but the 10 teenagers brought along with her all fell into the ‘abyss’ after they woke up. The duties assigned to them were to take care of those dying people.

    To watch people being killed by a sabre or sword was one thing, and quite another to personally touch the dying, watch their wounds fester and bleed. After only one day, the teenagers looked decades older than they actually were, quiet and melancholy. The rotten odor lingered in their nose. Even Lin Yang was stunned, dull without a word.

    The person in charge of the Ji Xin Yuan was a 20-year-old man. He had a skinny body and a pale face decorated with acne. It seemed like he was someone who had fallen ill and sent to the yard to die, yet kept living and becoming the ‘lord’ of this place.  

    The man in charge was surnamed Han, and was called Servant Ji. He was clenching his teeth while saying his name, as if it was the teenagers’ fault that he had such an ill name.    

    He always carried a three-chi-long red stick, and had the catchphrase, "to teach someone how to be a good servant, one has to beat them until their bones are soft." 

    Golden Roc Castle had stricter rules than the robbers' gang of the Iron Mountain. The first thing Servant Ji did after taking over the new servants was to name them again. The method he used to choose a name was easy⏤he sequentially picked one character from the ‘thousand-character classic’, then added the character ‘Servant’. Characters that may be a taboo or too complex were first removed, with seven or eight hundred characters left to be alternatively used by successive servants.

    This was how Servant Ji received his name.

    He took out a roster that was labeled with a variety of symbols, indicated which words were still available.

    "San Lu Xiao Yao, Xin Zou Lei Qian, Qi Xie Huan Zhao. Hm, Lu and Zou have been used; there are still ten characters are left, just enough."

    The room used to brand named was a small yard nearby. A white-haired old man with slack skin was responsible for this work. Servant Ji would determine the character, and the old man would find the appropriate iron mold and put it in red fire.

    Even if they didn't understand the language of Central Plains, those teenagers understood what would happen next. They looked at each other. No one dared to be the first.

    "Hurry up, we have more things to do." Servant Ji urged impatiently.

    Lin Yang⏤he would soon be named Servant Yao⏤pushed Gu Shenwei ahead, so Gu Shenwei was the first one to obtain a new name branded on his right arm.  

    Servant Huan.

    It was surprising that his new name had the same character as his nickname.

    For the pair of brothers, the older one was called Servant Qi while the younger one was called Servant Xie.

    The teenagers' arms were all branded with two ugly characters, as well as a bird with spreading wings, the symbol of Golden Roc Castle.

    Servant Ji was very satisfied when he saw that his new underlings had forehead dripping with beads of perspiration. He even exposed the characters on his own arm, letting everyone look before dropping his sleeves and saying:

    "Now you are men of Golden Roc Castle. When you are alive, you are servants of the Lord. When you die, you will be servants of the previous Lord. Now, however, all of your lives are in my hands."

    Note: Zhang is a Chinese length unit, one zhang equals 3.3333..meters. Chi is also a Chinese length unit, one chi equals

             Ji Xin Yuan literally means Firewood Storage Yard.


  • edited January 2017
    Hi guys,
    the chapters posted here are all unedited ones, but luckily the Radiant Translations Group are helping me out with the edit. 
    Here I want to show my thanks to all of the dedicated editors in the Radiant Translations Group. I'll upload the edited chapters at WW and also here as soon as they are done. Thanks for reading.
  • Thx for the chapter
  • edited February 2017

    Editors: Savage Bunny, Moonclipse

    Volume 1 - Chapter 12  Pledges

    The first person that Gu Shenwei — now called Servant Huan — took care of was a dying young man in his twenties. There were three gashes on his chest, but he seemed to feel nothing. Lying on a brick bed, he didn't groan or make a request, as if he was already dead.

    Although they said to take care of him, really, he was just there to watch him die while filling up his bowl with water.

    Golden Roc Castle's mercy was to not bury him while he was still alive.

    The teenagers hadn’t even gotten familiar with their new names after only staying one night in the castle before they were sent to take care of the dying. They started their new life with the heavy stench of blood.

    Only one person was needed to take care of the dying man, but it was ‘off season’ these days. The man was the only wounded person in the yard, so Servant Ji called everybody. His explanation was to "Learn to get used to it", but he himself stood far away next to the doorway and held his nose.

    "This is the outcome of being a killer."

    Servant Ji seemed to be rejoicing over the misfortune of the dying young man, but man lying on the bed had no reaction to Servant Ji's words at all.

    "He is Servant Xie. We entered the castle at the same time. Look at him now though, he is lying there, waiting for death, and I'm the one watching him die. Hey, hey, want to be a killer? Work hard in your next life."

    The young man named Servant Xie didn't argue a single word; perhaps he hadn't even heard the words spoken by Servant Ji. It was Servant Yao (Lin Yang) who gathered his courage to raise his head and ask,

    "But one can become a somebody once he becomes a real killer, isn’t it?"

    Servant Ji was annoyed by these words. "Right, be a somebody, all of you, go become a killer. If any one of you can live longer than me in the east castle, I will kowtow to him. Who do you think you are? Want to be a killer? Humph!"

    Servant Ji shook the red stick in his hands threateningly at them, but because he didn't want to approach the dying, he left, irritated. In his eyes, the Servant Xie lying on the brick bed was already dead.

    Servant Xie died at dusk. Although the teenagers were reluctant, they had no choice but to carry the corpse under the threat of the red stick. They carried the corpse through the west door and dropped it down the cliff.

    "This is the final destination of all the servants of Golden Roc Castle, called Groaning Ghost Cliff. Listen, can you hear the strange sounds from below the cliff? It’s just like the moans of the dead."

    Servant Yao was teasing the teenagers again. One after another, the teenagers turned and ran away. Servant Ji was guarding inside the west door, and snorted at the teenagers' behavior, though nobody knew whether he snorted with ridicule or disdain.

    Gu Shenwei also ran with the others. He had already been here last night, and really had heard a moan under the cliff.

    Not long after that, the teenagers heard from Servant Ji that the cliff outside the west door really was called Groaning Ghost Cliff. Servant Yao hadn't made up the story. As for how he knew it, he didn’t say anything, so no one was able to guess.

    The Groaning Ghost Cliff was a triangular platform and had the remains of a stone table on it, positioned in the centre. It was said that in the past, people would add wood to the stone table and burn the dead. That was how the name Ji Xin Yuan came to. Since Golden Roc Castle changed its custom, the stone table had gradually been abandoned and destroyed. Now, only a few pieces of charred stone were left.

    In the following days, all that the teenagers did everyday was watch people die, then dropping their corpse off the Groaning Ghost Cliff. Most of the dead were young people; they had dreamed of becoming a killer and entered the east castle to be a disciple, but unfortunately, they failed in the end.

    Golden Roc Castle was divided into a number of relatively independent regions. The east castle trained killers while the west castle focused on various types of compound courtyards, such as Ji Xin Yuan which handled the dead.

    Although everybody knew that more people died than lived, they still fought for the right to enter the east castle one after another. The teenagers couldn’t understand why. Most of them had the same thoughts as Servant Ji; It was better to stay in the west yard honestly than to be a dead killer.

    But ambitious Servant Yao seemed to have a different idea. Several times, he had implied that he had the talent of being a killer. Nobody took it seriously however, because he didn't know kung fu and his body was no different than others.

    Gu Shenwei had also seriously considered working hard to enter the east castle. The killers from Golden Roc Castle had slaughtered the Gu family, so he would learn to be a killer here and then take his revenge. While this was an attractive idea and the perfect plan in his mind, it was not easy to realize.

    First, there was little time as the young lord of Gu family could be found out at anytime, so he had to hurry and take revenge.

    Second, training in the east castle was cruel and bloody. There were very little who could pass and survive successfully. He was afraid that he would die before getting revenge.

    The third and also most problematic was that without a reference, a low level servant like him wasn't qualified at all to enter the east castle.

    Gu Shenwei wanted to seek advice from the God's will again, but nothing happened.

    Since he had entered Golden Roc Castle, God's will seemed to have been blocked outside. He was helpless now, with neither away to find his elder sister nor a way to take his revenge. Right now, not to mention extinguishing the Shangguan Family, he couldn't even see the tail of Shangguan Nu's clothes.

    He was really afraid that he would be trapped in Ji Xin Yuan and carry the dead for his the rest of life.

    Not only him, all the teenagers felt like they had been forgotten. Golden Roc Castle seemed to not take the ten kids seriously. The teenagers would also be like those dying people, wasting their lives in this ominous courtyard until their death.

    The fifth day after they had entered the castle, the teenagers finally glimpsed a sliver of hope to survive.

    Xue Niang, Miss Luo Ningcha's servant, had come.

    Although the teenagers had never been comforted by Xue Niang and had suffered under her Iron fingers, seeing her now was just like seeing their beloved one. Only she could save them out of the sea of misery.

    That afternoon. Xue Niang opened the door and came in. As curt as usual, she said, "Follow me."

    The teenagers who were cleaning Ji Xin Yuan almost cheered aloud, but Servant Ji was standing in the doorway. They dared not show their joy because his red stick was not easy to deal with.

    "Who are you?"

    Servant Ji looked at the unfamiliar middle-aged woman with surprise. The woman walked so quietly that he hadn’t even heard the footsteps. He was very unhappy about this.

    "I'm Miss Ningcha's wet nurse."

    Servant Ji frowned. He had never heard of a ‘Miss Ningcha’ in the castle, and this woman's body was as flat as a coffin; she didn’t look like anyone's wet nurse.

    "What Miss?"

    With one finger, Xue Niang poked Servant Ji, causing his face to turn red. With a low humming sound, he sat down on the doorstep.

    "Let’s go."

    Xue Niang turned around and walked towards the courtyard door. Behind, the teenagers rushed to follow. Only Servant Yao had something more on his mind; he lifted Servant Ji up and softly told him the origin of Xue Ning.

    Xue Niang led the ten teenagers through the east door. They walked along the alley, and after several turns, they reached the courtyard of the eighth young lord Shangguan Nu. The lords of Golden Roc Castle resided in the north castle, far away from Ji Xin Yuan. There were many crossroads along the way. Gu Shenwei had observed carefully, but could only memorize three quarters of them. It was surprising that Xue Niang had been able to easily find them despite never coming before.

    The eighth young lord's house faced the south and was divided into two sections. Though it was not large, it was very elegant. It was hard to imagine that the owner of this place was actually a killer.

    Xue Niang pointed towards a vacant area in front of the great hall and ordered, "Kneel down."

    Everybody followed, but Gu Shenwei hesitated for a moment.

    He had long resolved that he would take revenge with unscrupulous means. As long as he could get revenge, then there was nothing he couldn't bear. Thinking of this, he quickly bent his knee and kneeled on the ground with the others.

    Xue Niang glanced at him. It was not the teenager's moment of hesitation, but his straight back that had aroused her attention.

    Kneeling next to the teenagers were the ten virgin girls and several close maidservants, their expressions anxious. It seemed that something big had happened.

    The door of the hall was open. In front of the door was a translucent screen, reflecting a slender silhouette.

    "Have they all arrived?"

    "Yes, Miss."

    Big God Head's daughter didn't like the title of Young Mistress, so her closest servant called her Miss. From then on, all the servants that had come along with her all called her Miss.

    "Let them swear one by one."

    This was indeed the voice he remembered of Big Head God's daughter, her tone devoid of the shyness and happiness of a newlywed bride. Instead, it had a hint of uncontrollable anger.

    "I, Xue Niang, swear to heavens that in my lifetime, I will be loyal only to Miss Luo Ningcha, daughter of Iron Mountain Big Head God. I will follow my lord's surname Luo and never change my surname. If I violate this oath, I shall be struck by lightning from the heavens, descend into the eighteenth level of hell, and never have a chance to reincarnate."

    Servant Yao was the first to follow and swear with sincere words. If Gu Shenwei hadn’t known Servant Yao through and through, he would have believed that he had followed the Miss for many years.

    Servant Yao had his own way in seeking information; for example, he had known about the Groaning Ghost Cliff. This meant that his set of methods for dealing with people actually worked in Golden Roc Castle.

    Gu Shenwei needed to understand his enemies, so he followed Servant Yao to be the second one to swear. He had just received his new first name and now he had to change his surname. He swore with his mouth, but in his heart, he kept repeating, I'm Gu Shenwei.

    It was difficult for those teenagers who couldn't speak the language of the Central Plains, so Servant Yao volunteered to be the translator. The teenagers followed with stammering words. Surprisingly, they were able to finish the oath.

    Nobody knew why Big Head God's daughter suddenly made them pledge.

    After pledging, the Miss behind the screen asked,

    "Xue Niang, who do you think is suitable?"

    "The other aspects are not important; the key point is that the person must be clever, and I think he is appropriate."

    The person she pointed to was Servant Yao, so Servant Yao responded quickly. He immediately moved forward two steps on his knees, kowtowed and said,

    "Little Servant would go through scorching fire and freezing water for Miss."

    The Miss didn't mention what he was suitable for, she only answered, "Then him.". The bizarre show for displaying loyalty came to an end.

    Later, the teenagers were led by a maidservant back to Ji Xin Yuan, while Servant Yao was left alone and didn’t come back until nightfall.

    Servant Ji complained while he locked the door. He had already inquired about the origin of Xue Niang and dared not directly challenge her, so he could only make oblique accusations. In his eyes, the ten boys ‘belonged’ to him. Xue Niang and the eighth young mistress putting her hands on them was actually against the rules and snatching his interests.

    Servant Yao was also implicated, but he didn't mind. He went back to the bedroom shared between the 10 teenagers, kicked off his shoes, jumped onto the brick bed and sighed with relief. Lying on the bed, he didn't say anything for a long time.

    Everyone knew his personality. Either way, he would boast about his special treatment from the Miss.

    "From tomorrow on, I will not be accompanying you all to take care of the dead." Finally, Servant Yao seemed to have thought of something unimportant and told them casually.

    "Why? Are you leaving here? " Someone asked curiously. In Golden Roc Castle, the language of the Central Plains was the official language. Those barbarian teenagers had barely learned enough to communicate.

    "Xue Niang will teach me kung fu; I will be a killer some time later."

    The teenagers were surprised at these words. Servant Yao had shown his interest in becoming a killer long time ago, but nobody had thought that good fortune would welcome him so quickly.

    "Can you?" Servant Qi asked abruptly in the Central Plains language at Servant Yao's side. Although he and his brother had joined to be sworn brothers, they had never forgotten Servant Yao's betrayal.

    In fact, everyone also wanted to ask this question. The first dead person they had thrown away was a disciple who had failed in the east castle. A thin body like Servant Yao probably could not stay up one day and be sent back to Ji Xin Yuan.

    "You don't know anything," Servant Yao said with disdain. "the killers are also humans, they have various grades and ranks and also follow the ways of the world. A normal person will die, but I'm the one recommended by the eighth young lord and Miss. Who would dare to touch me?"

    No one could refute him. They knew nothing about Golden Roc Castle and didn't understand the real situation.

    But Gu Shenwei was persuaded by these words.

    He did not want to waste time learning to be a killer, but if he could get the lord’s favor and recommendation, did that mean that he would have the opportunity to approach Shanguan Nu?

  • edited February 2017

    Editor: Moonclipse

    Volume 1 - Chapter 13  Servant Xiao

    It was not on a whim that Big Head God's daughter thought of her 10 teenager servants. Every day in the morning after the teenagers had made their pledges, they would be led by a maidservant to the courtyard of the eighth young lord and show their respect to the Miss.

    After several days, Gu Shenwei realized that it was not easy to become close to the Miss.

    Despite copying Servant Yao, Gu Shenwei didn't gain the Miss’ favor.

    When he was still a young lord of the Gu family, he didn't find it difficult to make someone like him, but now, he was a humble servant who stank of the dead. Others would do their best to avoid him, who on earth would like him?

    To show their respects to the Miss, the teenagers had to kneel on the edge of the courtyard with their body motionless and head held down. They were only allowed to stand up after the Miss had come back from outside and completely disappeared inside the backyard. They would then follow the path back to Ji Xin Yuan and face Servant Ji's cold expression.

    Although the Miss's surname was Luo and she was not a young lady of Shangguan Family, she still had to fulfill her obligations as a daughter-in-law and bow to her mother-in-law with the other daughter-in-laws every morning. It was during  this time that she had the worst mood, and she would vent herself by abusing her own servants, similar to her husband Shangguan Nu.  

    Servant Yao intimidated with a warning, " I wonder which one of you will provoke the Miss first. Don't ask me for help when that happens. Although we are brothers, I still have to protect myself first."

    Servant Yao always scared others and lied most of the time, but this time it was unfortunate that he was right. A teenager called Servant Xiao became the first unlucky one.

    Servant Xiao was strong, and was the tallest and oldest among the teenagers. With a kind face, he always wore a smile which made him appear to be even more naive than the youngest Servant Xie. He also held the record of being frightened until crying by Servant Yao. It was him, however,  that did an outrageous and incredible behavior during their second visit to the Miss.

    He had raised his head and glanced at the Miss.

    The Miss had been walking in the courtyard with hasty footsteps and had said rather angrily, "why does little Ru have to change her name? Does Shangguan Family wants to occupy all of the characters in the world? It is outrageous, how dare you!"   

    In addition to Xue Niang, the Miss also had four personal maidservants. Following the Chinese idiom ‘Chen Xin Ru Yi’, they were called little Chen, little Xin, little Ru and little Yi. Privately, the teenagers thought that none of these names were good, but it didn't affect the Miss's love for them.

    Perhaps the Miss didn’t care about the four maidservants, and also didn't care about their names. She just didn't want to be forced to change the name for her underlings. She had to surrender, however, because this proposal was made by her mother-in-law, Mistress of the Shangguan Family.

    This was Servant Yao's analysis afterwards, but at that moment, the teenagers didn't think that much because they were all startled by another voice.

    "Your head was up? Why did you raise your head?

    Screams rang through the whole yard. The maidservant little Ru who hadn't received her new name yet angrily stared at a teenager kneeling on the edge of the courtyard. Following that, Servant Xiao was kicked down to the ground by Xue Niang before he could explain anything. His face hit the bluestone of the courtyard heavily. He no longer dared to move.

    The teenagers who had been kneeling with their heads on the ground, at that moment, even their eyeballs were all motionless with fear.

    The Miss's endless whining stopped abruptly, and a sound of someone rushing into the great hall was heard. After the screen was placed, she asked,

    "This man saw me?"

    Servant Xiao, because of that one head lift, turned from a silly teenager into a ‘man’.

    "No, he should not have."

    Although Xue Niang's kick was ruthless, she still spoke a word for Servant Xiao. Servant Xiao wanted to say something, but was gazed to hold back by Xue Niang.

    "I didn't see anything," Servant Xiao said vaguely while lying on his stomach. This inevitably revealed that he had raised his head.

    "Kill him." The Miss ordered from behind the screen.

    "Miss......this is probably not good." Xue Niang hesitated.

    The Miss was now in Golden Roc Castle, not the robbers' gang of Iron Mountain, so she no longer had supreme power over life and death. Although she was very angry about this, she couldn't do anything recklessly.

    "Poke out his eyes, cut out his tongue."

    This was the same punishment that the unfortunate virgin girl had suffered. The blind and tongueless virgin girl had stayed beside the Miss, and every time the teeneagers came to pay respects to the miss, they would see her.

    "I didn't see anything, I didn't see."

    Servant Xiao became terrified. His body shook uncontrollably as he lay flat on the ground.

    The four personal maidservants came together. It was their responsibility to get rid of one's eyes and tongue. The maidservant, little Ru, was particularly enthusiastic. She felt just as annoyed as the Miss and needed to vent her anger.

    Although Big Head God's daughter couldn't do as she wished, some things were still the same. No one could stop her from punishing her own servants.

    No one begged for Servant Xiao.

    Gu Shenwei didn't want to admit it, but he was really freaked out. He even hoped that he would temporarily lose his hearing so he didn't have to listen to Servant Xiao’s scream.

    The maidservants moved quickly and professionally; they even helped Servant Xiao stop the blood with medicine.

    Nobody said a word as they carried Servant Xiao back to Ji Xin Yuan . Although everyone was insincere while they pledged to be brothers, they all felt sympathy for the half-dead Servant Xiao at this moment.

    Seeing the bloody face of Servant Xiao, Servant Ji was astonished. He jumped back and waved the red stick in front of him like as if he was driving away some invisible evil. "what happened?"  

    Servant Yao briefly explained what happened. Upon hearing this, Servant Ji was frightened, his facial expressions changing constantly as he said, "you foolish boy, why did you raise your head!"

    Even though Servant Xiao had lost his eyes and tongue, he still had his hearing. He suddenly broke free from the teenagers' hands, cried out “Ho ho”, and rushed to the place where he believed Servant Ji was standing.

    It happened too suddenly, so no one was able to block him. Servant Xiao almost ran past his objective. At first, Servant Ji was petrified and froze in place, but then he became angry and swung his red stick at Servant Xiao.

    "You heartless fool, are you mad? Peeping at the eighth mistress, you want to court death?"

    Servant Ji's anger seemingly came from nowhere.

    Observing Servant Xiao's expression, Gu Shenwei immediately figured out the truth; It was Servant Ji who had ordered Servant Xiao to secretly peek at the Miss.

    That’s right. Servant Ji had revealed numerous times his curiosity toward the eighth mistress when chatting with servants from other courtyards. The robber's daughter of the West Regions was famous for her peerless beauty, but she had never allowed a man to see her face. The men from Golden Roc Castle had never experienced Big Head God's cruelty and naturally very much wanted to know if the rumor was true or not.

    For the 10 teenagers, the concept of not looking at the Miss was embedded in their mind, and even the most ordinary curiosity exterminated. Only Servant Xiao, who was naive and always liked to please others, was persuaded by Servant Ji.

    Everyone had figured out the truth, but no one spoke a word. With Servant Yao taking lead, the other teenagers grabbed Servant Xiao, and carried him into the bedroom. Servant Xiao didn't resist. He had already lost the consciousness from being hit by the red stick.

    Servant Xiao laid on the brick bed, his blood flowing everywhere without end. Servant Ji refused to find a doctor, so the other teenagers had no choice but to clean after Servant Xiao again and again. Anyway, their tasks were to take care of the dying, so this was no different from what they did usually.

    During the night, Servant Xiao kept moaning, panting, and occasionally made garbling sounds like he was trying to say something. No one could understand what he was saying, so Gu Shenwei couldn't figure out what he was yelling.

    Nobody could fall asleep in this situation. In the end, Servant Yao jumped off the brick bed and slapped Servant Xiao's head. He ordered something incomprehensible, before the dying teenager finally became quiet.

    Gu Shenwei almost didn't sleep that night.

    The next day morning, he opened his eyes, then realized Servant Xiao had already died before he was awake.

    The sworn brothers, who had no true feelings in the first place, finally broke up because of this matter. Everyone understood that little servants were neither qualified nor capable of being protectors. To survive, they had to find other backers.

    Three of them went to Servant Ji. Of course, they all learnt from Servant Xiao’s experience and would never peep at the Miss for Servant Ji.

    Another two made greater efforts to please Servant Yao. Servant Yao received the favor of Xue Niang and would soon become a killer; his future seemed to be bright.  

    The pair of brothers, Servant Qi and Servant Xie, remained independent. They rarely conversed with the other teenagers and always muttered something in their own language.  

    Gu Shenwei had no interest in forming alliances with this small group.The only thing he thought was about was how to get revenge.

    Xue Niang came again the day after Servant Xiao's death. She directly broke into Servant Ji's room with an unkind face.

    "You beat the Miss's servant to death."

    Servant Ji was frightened by Xue Niang's aura and backed up two steps. He suddenly summoned some courage to say,

    "Don't blame the innocent. You killed Servant Xiao by cutting out his eyes and tongue, it had nothing to do with me."

    Xue Niang was ineloquent, but she had strong iron fingers. She didn't speak anymore and instead, swiftly poked Servant Ji's chest twice. The teenagers all knew that this skinny woman's finger was even harder than the red stick of the overseer.

    Servant Ji's face immediately grew red as if he had done something wrong. Then, with a cry of pain, he fell down to the ground and curled into a ball. This was the second time he had been poked, and Xue Niang had used more power than last time.   

    The death of Servant Xiao came to an end after Xue Niang punished Servant Ji.

    Because Servant Ji did not want to be looked down upon by the teenagers, the next day, he invited his backer. It was all because of this man's help that he had been able to be the overseer of Ji Xin Yuan.

    It was during the evening, just when those nine teenagers were ready to sleep that Servant Ji shouted from his room and ordered everyone to come inside. He looked very emboldened and wanted to show his ‘strength’.

    Servant Ji's confidence was not groundless. An extra man appeared in the room, lying on a recliner while facing the ceiling. Servant Ji was sitting on a stool and massaging the man's legs.

    The man wore a black robe with a golden bird embroidered on the shoulders and with a dark red belt. A narrow sabre was by his side, indicating that this man was a killer of Golden Roc Castle.

    Other teenagers could only recognize that he was a killer due to the clothing, but only Gu Shenwei knew this person.

    Although he had only glanced at his side profile, Gu Shenwei felt that the man was familiar; he must have seen him somewhere before.

    "Little whelps, your Miss hasn't cut your tongue today?"

    Servant Ji said in an unkind tone. No one dared to respond.

    "Hey, be careful of what you say. That is the eighth mistress, you should show some respect." the killer in black said casually, his eyes still closed.

    "Third Brother, it’s not that I'm speaking nonsense. I have always taught the servants with this method in Golden Roc Castle, and I have yet to see any lords be unhappy about this. It was just a cheap dead servant, why did the new mistress ask the skinny woman to poke me twice? Moreover, they dug out the eyes and cut the tongue of that teenager, it was their fault he died. Third brother, I'm telling you, that skinny woman's finger strength is huge, the two fingerprints on my chest are still green."

    Servant Ji held the killer's right hand and rubbed it against his chest.

    His tone and behavior was totally different from the vicious overseer.

    "That woman has some background, and she has already showed mercy by not poking you to death. What do you want me to do? I'm the eighth young lord’s underling, how am I going to fight with the eighth mistress?"

    "Huh, I think the mistress is either too ugly or doesn't know how to please others. If not, why doesn't she allow others to see her? And the eighth young lord is going to leave and go far away only a few days after they have married. Alas! Third brother, you had left for a few months and only just came back, but now you have to leave again. Third brother, you really have to talk to the eighth lord about this Xue Niang. She who just entered the castle but is already so arrogant, what will she become in the future?"

    Gu Shenwei suddenly recalled who this man was.

    Approximately three months ago, a man called Han Shiqi from the Western Regions came to Gu family manor with a letter. And lord Gu Lun had accepted him as a guardsman.

    Gu Shenwei found himself to be on the edge of the cliff again. As long as Han Shiqi turned around and opened his eyes, he would immediately recognize the young lord of the Gu family.


    Note: Chen Xin Ru Yi (称心如意) is a Chinese idiom which means “be just in accordance with one's wish or give one the utmost satisfaction”。

  • Hi, a suggestion from myself if you don't mind. Adding this series to Novelupdates could attract more readers to this thread and your translation!! Just a suggestion...
  • Hi, a suggestion from myself if you don't mind. Adding this series to Novelupdates could attract more readers to this thread and your translation!! Just a suggestion...
    Hi, thanks for your suggestion. As you can see, most of the chapters posted here have not been edited and the editors are working hard on it. I will consider about it when they are done. 
  • edited February 2017
    Editors: Moonclipse
    Volume 1 - Chapter 14  Acquaintance

    Who had written that reference letter for Han Shiqi? That person must have had some relation with the extermination of the Gu family.

    However, Gu Shenwei had no clue at all. At that time, he was still a young lord who was unfamiliar with the ways of the world and didn't care about stuff like that. He would not have remembered this guardsman if it wasn’t for the fact that he himself had been in the study when Gu Lun met Han Shiqi in person.  

    Han Shiqi must know what the previous ‘young lord’ looked like, because one of his main tasks at the manor had been to recognize faces.

    The first head they had brought back was wrong, and it was also wrong the second time. Nobody knew that better than Han Shiqi.

    Gu Shenwei's biggest concern had become reality.

    He was in a critical situation right now and had no solutions at all. He couldn't leave awkwardly as this would only arouse attention, but he couldn't stay like this either because Han Shiqi would open his eyes sooner or later.

    Gu Shenwei could only pray quietly and leave his fate to God's will.

    His face expressed a sliver of the mood in his heart. Servant Yao, who was good at reading another person’s mood, glanced curiously at him. He opened his mouth with the intention of saying something, but he stopped.

    Han Shiqi, who was lying on a recliner on the other side, leaned over and lazily said while he beckoned Servant Ji to kneaded his waist,

    "Less nonsense, I am already very lucky to keep this hand. Everytime I see the eighth young lord my heart will beat faster; how could I dare to speak more? I will mention your matter to the young lord later."

    Servant Ji was not satisfied, especially in front of those new servants. So, in a coquetry tone while poking Han Shiqi's waist like a little woman, he said,

    "Third brother, I really don't understand. It was not your fault that they killed the wrong kid before letting you double check, and they should praise you for finding the kid in the end. What are you afraid of ?"

    Gu Shenwei also really wanted to know what happened with the second kid.

    Han Shiqi chuckled mischievously and stretched his body. Without answering, he turned back and opened his eyes, looking towards the nine servants.

    Gu Shenwei's heart jumped to his throat. He almost turned around to run away. He would rather jump off the cliff than be caught by his enemy.

    Han Shiqi closed his eyes again.

    "I will be leaving for about a month. Go find some ‘joy’ for me."

    Servant Ji took the hint. He had to play tricks to maintain the favor of his backer.

    "Servant Qi and Servant Xie stay. The rest of you, go back to your own room." Then he whispered in Han Shiqi's ear: "a pair of brothers......"

    The brothers knew he was talking about them and couldn't help but be confounded for a moment.

    The elder brother Servant Qi had big eyes and thick eyebrows, but his younger brother Servant Xie was delicate, with bright eyes and graceful eyebrows. Servant Xie was timid and always hid half of his body behind his elder brother. In Gu Shenwei's impressions, he didn't speak much.

    Servant Yao’s expression was terrible as if he had a big grievance. He immediately threw a tantrum after he went back to the bedroom.

    "On which aspects they are better than me? They are nothing but brothers. They don't know how to make visionable choices. I can guarantee that their asses were not even washed clean. Huh, Servant Ji thought I informed Xue Niang secretly. He should have thought of that everybody knows he had beaten Servant Xiao."

    Gu Shenwei speculated what the two brothers would suffer.

    Although he was only fourteen years-old, Gu Shenwei had already vaguely heard of something called catamite when he was in the Central Plains. He hadn't understood the exact meaning of the word, but he knew that it was a very dirty and bad thing.

    He sympathized with the brothers, but could not do anything. They had encountered a disaster while he had just escaped from his misfortune. Han Shiqi would go out tomorrow and came back a month later. Perhaps by then, God's will would have already helped him find his sister and escape together during this period. Then they could look for opportunities to avenge their family in the future.

    Servant Yao was angry that he had missed the opportunity to flatter Han Shiqi. As the ‘lucky’ Servant Qi and Servant Xie were not present, he could only vent his anger at others.

    "Servant Huan, it will probably be your turn next time. Look at how noble you are, you will certainly be favored by Master Han, Ah, I forgot to remind you, those men prefer to be ruthless to a small tender sheep like you. When it happens, you may not be able to walk in a few days, ha ha, they ... ... "

    Gu Shenwei really wanted to punch that triangle face. He suppressed his anger, reminding himself not to make trouble. Han Shiqi was just next door, so he'd better not catch his attention.

    However, he couldn't bear it anymore, finally losing his control and rushed at Servant Yao.

    Servant Yao was already prepared. The whole time, he had stood behind the other teenagers. The five teenagers hadn't learnt too much of the language of Central Plains, so they hadn't fully understood his words. They didn't know why Servant Huan had suddenly become so angry, so they held him together.

    Although Gu Shenwei, was far from being able to fight the killers and robbers with only his meagre bit of family-inherited kung fu skills, it was still possible for him to beat several kids of his age. Gazing at the proud triangle-faced Servant Yao, Gu Shenwei's reason suddenly went returned so he retreated to the side while suppressing his fury.

    It was already midnight when the brothers Servant Qi and Servant Xie came back.

    The elder brother Servant Qi sealed his lips and lowered his head, avoiding everybody while he walked in. His younger brother Servant Xie followed behind him, sobbing along the way.

    The two of them lay on the brick bed. The others all pretended that they hadn't heard anything, but there was one who hadn't finished venting his anger.

    "Hey, your asses must be very comfortable right? Do not think you are superior to me after finding a killer as a backer. I'm the Miss's confidant now, and in the future I will be ......"

    Before Servant Yao could finish his words, Servant Qi had run past several teenagers and punched him in the face. The two of them fought together. At first, the nearby teenagers tried to stop them, but then they all joined the fight.  

    In the end, all nine teenagers in the room fought each other regardless if it was voluntary or forced. The room was shrouded in darkness, so nobody knew who they were fighting with, therefore although Gu Shenwei knew kung fu, it was useless and he still received many hits.

    Everyone was in a fighting mood and hadn't realized that someone had come in with a lantern.

    Servant Ji said with a sneer,

    "Third brother, they are fighting for your favour."

    Han Shiqi was resting in Servant Ji's room and saw the group of teenagers fighting with a disorder that would catch the night watchman's attention. He felt annoyingly amused, then shouted ‘stop’ while he dashed up, grabbing and throwing them to separate everyone.

    Gu Shenwei's restored reason had totally disappeared. The anger which he had suppressed for many days had burst out, so with each punch he used his full strength. Suddenly, Gu Shenwei felt his arm held by someone. Without a second thought, he used this opportunity to turn around and duck his head under the arm while he using his left fist to punch the other's face.

    Han Shiqi was surprised. He did not expect that a small master was hiding among the group of kids. He didn't block the move; instead, he grabbed with more force and pushed outward. The undaunted juvenile was immediately thrown into a corner.

    More red marks appeared where Gu Shenwei's new name was branded. His bones were like broken, indicating the huge gap in power between him and the Golden Roc killer.

    The two of them stared at each other.

    One of them was once a spy who had sneaked into Gu family manor and was now a loyal killer of the eighth young lord Shangguan Nu. Another was once the young lord of the Gu family, but now sold as a servant whose arm was stamped with a disgraceful brand.

    Gu Shenwei was not nervous when it happened. Instead, he was very calm; he knew he had no way to escape. He would rather die fighting honorably than beg to live and lose the Gu family's face.

    The nine teenagers scattered everywhere in the room. They knew they had caused trouble, so no one spoke a word. Servant Yao turned his head to the side, as if what had happened had nothing to do with him.

    Han Shiqi swung his hand and smiled with surprise.

    Gu Shenwei knew he had been recognized. With the thought of fighting to die, he stared back bitterly.

    "Servant Ji, you have hidden a treasure."

    "Stop speaking nonsense, make your move."

    Gu Shenwei slowly stood up. The first level yang strength of 'balanced power' inside his body was like a raging river. Faced the well-known Golden Roc killer, his body was held up by the will of death. He neither trembled nor retreated.

    The teenagers all felt surprised that the well-behaved Servant Huan suddenly become unafraid of death. It was especially unexpected for Servant Ji. These teenager servants were all under his care, if they behaved like this in front of the lord, wouldn’t it be his fault?  

    "You smelly bastard, are you looking for death? How dare you speak with the master like this! What have I taught you before?"

    He drew the red stick hanging by his waist, preparing to carry out the ‘family law’.

    Unexpectedly, Han Shiqi held Servant Ji back. The smile on his face didn't diminish at all.
    "No, let him keep his wildness. Don't let others touch him, wait until I came back."

    Han Shiqi and Servant Ji left along with the lantern, leaving the nine teenagers in darkness. Everyone breathed heavily before climbing onto the brick bed one after another. In this fight, nobody won and nobody gained any benefits from it.

    Gu Shenwei also climbed onto the brick bed. His skeleton collapsed, too soft to support his body.

    What did Han Shiqi mean? Didn't he recognize him?

    How could it be possible? One of Han Shiqi's main purposes for sneaking into the manor was to recognize people. Or maybe that was not Han Shiqi, just somebody who looked similar to him?

    Indeed, Servant Ji always called him "third brother, third brother", but he had never mentioned his real name.

    "Another one whose ass is going to bloom......" Servant Yao muttered, before falling asleep. He felt aggrieved and didn't understand why such a good thing didn't happen to him.

    Gu Shenwei finally figured out the reason why he wasn’t recognised when he washed his face the next morning. His face was green and red, badly swollen and couldn't be recognized.

    He had been so occupied with worries that he didn't even feel the pain. Now with the shock of cold water, he felt an unbearable itching.

    The others were also seriously injured; some of them even limped while walking.

    When they were bowing to the Miss as usual, Xue Niang saw the awkward teenagers, snorted and didn't say anything.

    After they came back to Ji Xin Yuan, Servant Ji used the red stick in his hands to teach the teenagers that he was the master of this courtyard and that only he was qualified to beat others.

    Only the troublemaker Servant Yao was able to avoid Servant Ji's abuse. He would stay at Xue Niang's place and practice alone after they had bowed to the Miss. To become a killer in Golden Roc Castle, it was not enough to only have the lord's favor; one should also have a little martial arts foundation.

    However, Servant Yao suffered a lot under Xue Niang's training. When the other teenagers' swollen bodies had already recovered, his old injuries were replaced with new injuries and his face was always decorated with colours. Every day before going to sleep, he would still imagine about what he would do after becoming a killer, but he was not confident anymore.

    Gu Shenwei believed that, in several months, Servant Yao would die under Xue Niang's hands.

    The eleventh day after he had entered Golden Roc Castle, Gu Shenwei was worried since he still had not heard any information regarding his elder sister, and was also nervous about what he could do after Han Shiqi's return. Servant Yao who made very little at practising kung fu found him.

    The two of them hadn't spoken a word in the past few days, so Gu Shenwei was surprised to meet him. He was cleaning the floor in Servant Ji's room when Servant Yao walked in, earlier than usual.

    "You know kung fu?"

    Gu Shenwei didn't answer and continued cleaning the floor.

    "Teach me."

    "Dream on." Gu Shenwei thought secretly in his heart, still not answering.

    "Teach me 'balanced power' and I will return the silk to you."

    Gu Shenwei immediately stood up.

  • Hello guys, the first 14 chapters posted here have finally been edited. New chapters will be posted at Radiant Translations. Thanks for reading!
  • Woo-hoo, I finally make it to Chapter 50!
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